Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Review - xoBeauty Brushes and Lashes

Hello Princesses!

Today I'm going to be reviewing the xoBeauty Lashes and Brushes shown in the last Sunday Store Review! Like I mentioned briefly in the Store Review, there are so many questions asked about the quality of the xoBeauty brushes in comparison to the super cheap brushes you can buy off Ebay. Since I own the Ebay brushes as well as some of the xoBeauty brushes I included a little comparison between the two! 

I own two sets of the Ebay brushes, and they're great for first time brushes! They're super cheap, come in pretty colours and for around $0.50 each they work quite well! But you can't compare a $0.50 brush to a $18 brush, no matter how similar they look. The same goes with the millions of false lashes you can purchase on Ebay worth $0.10 each. They're super cheap for a reason.

"The Romantic" lashes were designed for the girly girl who likes a bit of flirt, a bit of length, and a bit of volume! They are super full but do not take over your eyes, so they can be worn both day or night. Tapered on the inner corner for comfort, and finished off with a beautiful flick and curve on the 'Outer V' to elongate your eye shape. These have an invisible lash band so you can wear them without eyeliner if you wish. 
The xoBeauty lashes are super thick and full! They're designed to look like naturally thick fluffy lashes, and I love the way that the thick sections of lashes are spread out so that they don't look too overwhelming. In comparison to the top Ebay lashes (closest things I had to the xo lashes!) they look very long, thick and fluffy! The Ebay lashes look exactly the same all the way along the band which isn't a natural look.
Full disclosure, I'm absolutely terrible at applying full lashes. I usually cut them in half and stick them on like that because the inner corner always lifts up! They lash glue (DUO) didn't dry very fast either, so you'll have to put up with visible lash glue - sorry!
Ebay lashes!
Yeah nope. These look really long and thin, don't blend with my natural lashes and also don't bend too well so don't want to stick down (making my already awful lash application even WORSE). They're not shaped (shorter on the inner corners, longer on the outer) so the inner lashes look super weird and unnatural.
xoBeauty Lashes
The lash band is a lot softer than the Ebay lash band, so it almost stuck down well (it's not quite stuck to the lashline, just a little above which is why they look so funny) but they blend quite well with my natural lashes and fit super well around the inner corner since the lashes are shorter! I actually cut these in half after doing these photos and I either use just the outer corner, or stick the two halves separately so they actually work better for my eyes ^.^
Which side do you prefer (ignoring the awful application)?
Face Brushes!
 Bronzing Brush ($18.00) 
Our jumbo sized Bronzer Brush is perfect for an even application of bronzer. This will imitate a beautiful sun-tan with little-to-no effort! The synthetic hairs blend flawlessly, and the large size means you can run your bronzer all around the outer areas of your face for a flawless, natural, sun-kissed glow. And, its super easy and quick! Follow up with a smaller brush to contour your cheeks, add blush, and highlight for a beautiful complete look.
 
The xoBeauty Bronzer brush has a flatter top than the Ebay brush which is more like a Powder brush. The xoBeauty Brush is insanely soft, while the Ebay brush is a little plasticy.
Our favourite blush brush! Perfect for both creams and powders. It is tapered which provides a perfect shape for cheek application. And, its super duper soft!
 
The Ebay brush is a flat top brush while the xoBeauty brush is tapered, making it amazing for blush. Again, the xoBeauty brush is super soft and the Ebay brush it plasticy. The Ebay brush has a little trouble picking up product and tends to flick the product off the face rather than blending it in because the bristles are a little stiff.

Ebay Brushes
To be honest I can't really even see the Bronzer or Blush when using the Ebay brushes. I had to apply it twice to even get this result, so I feel like they will do the job eventually, but it takes way more product to get the same result, and much more blending to make it look somewhat natural. 

xoBeauty Brushes
So much better! Even though my bronzing skill is definitely sub-par, these brushes make so much of a difference.  
Eye Brushes!
I used my Urban Decay Naked 3 palette for this eye look, but it's really the same basic eyeshadow recipe that I use for whenever I wear eye makeup! If I want it to be lighter I use lighter colours, if I want it to be darker I use different colours!

The first step is to prime your eyelids, I used the Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer. Then I take the lightest and most neutral shade in the palette (Strange) and apply it over my whole eyelid, browbone, and into the inner corners of my eyes.

I think take a very mid toned brown colour (Nooner) and blend it out in my crease. I then take a shimmery colour and apply it all over the lid.
Then I take a darker colour (Factory) to use in the outer third of my lid, and into the outer third of my lower lash line. I use a little more of my crease colour (Nooner) to re-blend, and that's it!
Our Tapered Crease Brush is perfect for applying colour into your crease, and is super soft and fluffy so you can then blend that colour right out! This is slightly smaller then our similar Blender Brush, and more tapered
This is my favorite brush out of them all, I just think that it does such a good job at blending! I love that the eyeshadow didn't just get dusted off the brush like it usually would.  The Ebay brush does not compare. It's more like a domed brush rather than a blending brush so it just does not do a very good job. I'm not even sure how I did eyeshadow before owning a proper blending brush? (Tbh, that's probably why it was so bad). 

I think the pictures speak for themselves.
Our Tapered Blender Brush is perfect for blending colour into the crease. It is smaller than our white bristled blending brush, meaning its great to place colour and blend at the same time!

This brush isn't as necessary as the Crease brush, but it's still very handy! It's amazing for doing small detalied blending, as well as lower lashline stuff. Again, the Ebay comparison brush isn't quite the same, but it's the closest that they have! I think overall the difference between the brushes is that the xoBeauty brushes are much more detailed, so I get a lot more precision with them rather than the Ebay brushes which looks quite chunky and they eyeshadow goes out a lot further than the xoBeauty side. It just looks messy, it's hard work, and uses more product.
 Gratuitous eye shot. Why not.
Here's the final comparison between the xoBeauty and Ebay lashes and brushes. Personally I think there is a massive difference not only with the hilarious lashes, but with the face and eye brushes.

What I Love
- Amazing quality
- Easy to use
- Great range of products
- Supporting NZ businesses


What I Don't Love
- On the pricier side for some


Final Thoughts
I absolutely love the brushes and lashes I picked out! The brushes work so well that it took me half the time to look twice as good with twice as little product! I could never understand why my eyeshadow looked bad when I was using good quality eyeshadow, but honestly having good brushes makes all the difference! I will definitely be getting some more brushes from xoBeauty and possibly some fo the super cute hair ties and rings! ^.^

Thanks for reading all the way down to the end of this massive review! Do you like long picture heavy reviews, or short wordy reviews?

Monday, 20 October 2014

Manicure Monday - Pink and Purple Reverse Tips

Hello Princesses!

Today I have another super cute manicure (I swear I say this every week) featuring Lime Crime Parfait Day polish and a La Girls glittery purple polish! I decided to paint the underside of my nails in reverse colour so that it looks super cute even if you're looking at my fingers the wrong way!
I love the way this looks, but man I was tempted to pick at the underside of my nails for the first couple of hours! It literally feels like dirt underneath my nails, but instead it's sparkly glittery happiness! ^.^

Would you ever rock this type of manicure?

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Store Review - xoBeauty

Hello Princesses!

Today I'm going to be reviewing another well known New Zealand based store, xoBeauty! XoBeauty is the business baby of the gorgeous New Zealand  Youtuber, Shaaanxo. She began with her very own Brush line and has been expanding ever since, now including gorgeous lashes, super cute hair ties and delicate fine jewelery! There's been a talk amongst beauty bloggers and fans alike in regards to the pricing of her brand and the quality in comparison to brushes you can get off Ebay for a fraction of the price. Are you as interested as I am? 
Price Comparison
This is by far one of the most asked questions about the xoBeauty brushes, and potentially one of the most annoying/saddening questions. XoBeauty face brushes look similar to the Jessup brushes you can purchase off Ebay. The left set of xoBeauty brushes cost $80NZD for 4 brushes. The right set of Jessup brushes cost $6.50NZD for 5 brushes. I can see where a lot of people are coming from in regards to the cost aspect of the brushes because yes, it's a massive difference for brushes that look the same. But just like everything in life, the price reflects the quality of the products.

I really dislike the comment section on this store. Not because I dislike people commenting and sharing feedback, but it's literally become a place for little girls to complain about how they can't afford nice things. Just because I can't afford a Chanel handbag doesn't mean I go onto Chanel's facebook and complain about it. I didn't bother blurring their names because it will be visible if you follow the links anyway. That's what you get for complaining. I really dislike that they are implying that Sigma brushes are way better than the xoBeauty brushes, it's almost the same as saying that the brand doesn't deserve to be as good as Sigma without even giving it the chance. Don't mind me while I mini-rage at ignorant people on the internet, this is why I have a blog, I would probably explode if I didn't!
 
I don't believe that the brushes, lashes or jewelery are overpriced at all, but it really does depends on what you consider expensive.
 

Website Practicality
The website is aesthetically, incredibly pleasing. A crisp white background with pink and black writing looks incredibly professional. The website is quite nice to navigate, but I wish there was an option to "Shop Brushes" or "Shop Lashes" on the home screen rather than clicking into "Shop All" and then refining your search to "Single Brushes". It's only one extra click, but it's really all I could think of that I didn't like! ^.^

Shipping and Packaging
The shipping was incredibly quick (2 days) even though I purchased during a sale! My products were all individually wrapped, then wrapped in bubble wrap and tied with a pink ribbon with a super cute business card with hearts punched out!
Products
I didn't want to do a full review of these brushes and lashes in the store review, (it would be so super long!) but make sure to check back on Wednesday for a full review and comparison to Ebay brushes and Lashes!

"The Romantic" lashes were designed for the girly girl who likes a bit of flirt, a bit of length, and a bit of volume! They are super full but do not take over your eyes, so they can be worn both day or night. Tapered on the inner corner for comfort, and finished off with a beautiful flick and curve on the 'Outer V' to elongate your eye shape. These have an invisible lash band so you can wear them without eyeliner if you wish.
 
These lashes are absolutely gorgeous, full and fluttery, super soft and really lightweight to wear! I don't wear lashes regularly because I find that they press on my eyelids weirdly making my contacts feel super uncomfortable. These lashes feel a lot nicer to wear for longer periods of time than my regular cheap lashes! 
I purchased four brushes, two face brushes and two eye brushes! I wanted to purchase the Kabuki brush but it was out of stock by the time I got to checkout :C I absolutely love the design of these brushes, they look dainty and feel expensive and not at all like the plasticy ebay brushes.
Bronzing Brush ($18.00) 
Our jumbo sized Bronzer Brush is perfect for an even application of bronzer. This will imitate a beautiful sun-tan with little-to-no effort! The synthetic hairs blend flawlessly, and the large size means you can run your bronzer all around the outer areas of your face for a flawless, natural, sun-kissed glow. And, its super easy and quick! Follow up with a smaller brush to contour your cheeks, add blush, and highlight for a beautiful complete look.

I love this brush! I've never liked bronzing my face since it looks weird being so pale and the bronzer would just look so harsh and just ick. This brush makes it so easy to blend and leaves no harsh lines! Plus it makes a gorgeous regular face powder brush too, I'm all about multi-tasking tools!
Our favourite blush brush! Perfect for both creams and powders. It is tapered which provides a perfect shape for cheek application. And, its super duper soft!

This is super soft and light! If you find that you are often heavy handed on blush then, give this brush a go. It takes just a light tap in the blush and it's almost impossible to get too much product on the cheek.
Our Tapered Crease Brush is perfect for applying colour into your crease, and is super soft and fluffy so you can then blend that colour right out! This is slightly smaller then our similar Blender Brush, and more tapered
 
Our Tapered Blender Brush is perfect for blending colour into the crease. It is smaller than our white bristled blending brush, meaning its great to place colour and blend at the same time!

These were the brushes that I was most excited about in the order! I've never had proper/good eye brushes before and always struggled to blend my eyeshadow well. These changed everything. If you want to purchase one thing from xoBeauty I highly suggest purchasing the Tapered Crease brush because it is amazing. Amazing I tell you.
What I Love
-  Amazing quality brushes and lashes
- Super quick, cheap shipping for NZ orders
- Great selection in each section
- Super friendly Instagram/Facebook team
- Did I mention the amazing crease brush? There's an amazing crease brush


What I Don't Love
- Nothing!
Final Thoughts
I'm in love. Seriously. Everything about the packaging of the lashes to the signature on the brushes is just so me (unless they release pastel coloured handles, then I would legitimately purchase everything twice). I started off my brush and lash collection with super cheap brushes just so I could cover the basics and see which brushes I favoured, then I moved onto better quality brushes (XO brushes) and I'm not looking back. I love them, they make me look twice as good in twice as little time and with twice as little product. I'm so sold.

Have you tried anything from the xoBeauty line? What are your favorite brushes?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...