ELF Cosmetics ‘Mint Melt’ Eyeshadow Palette & Shadow Stick – Swatches & Review

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Elf has been releasing a whole slew of new products lately, and they’ve been really upping the quality and creativity of their products, so I’ve been so intrigued to try their newer releases as they come out! And especially when I saw this whole collection, from the packaging to the colors to the products, I was in love and was just so excited to try it out. Their newest collection is the ‘Mint Melt’ collection, and features a mint green theme to the all of their products.

They released some new makeup products, along with some new skincare. Along with two eyeshadow palettes, 3 shadow sticks, 4 lip glosses, and a brush set, they also released a Mint Melt cooling face primer (I did grab that one as well and will review it in a separate post), a Whipped face mask, and a Minty Fresh Cooling Cleanser. I didn’t grab either of the two skincare items just because my skin is -sensitive- and I didn’t want to mess with the routine I already had.

I also only grabbed one of the eyeshadow palettes and one of the shadow sticks in the colors that truly interested me in a moment of -self control-. I grabbed these right off of the Elf website, along with some other new products to try. As I always do with makeup reviews, I’ll show swatches, eye looks and then a review. Feel free to click to any of the links above to skip to certain parts of the review.

So let’s get right into the swatches and review!

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Wet N Wild NEW Color Icon 10-Pan Eyeshadow Palettes 2021 – Swatches

I’ve mentioned before that I want to bring consistent makeup reviews back to the blog, and I’m enjoying testing out new makeup to post about here. And to add to that, I want to start adding in swatch posts as well! These will come with multi-part reviews, like this one, or for larger palettes that will require longer amounts of testing. With this post being the first, this will feature purely just swatches and images of the palettes, and then as I finish each individual palette review, I’ll link it above. I’m sure it’ll shift as I continue figuring out my style and process, but for now that’s what I’m aiming for!

I wanted to get these swatches out, so you can at least see the color stories, and how they look on my skin tone, and get a little bit of an idea of how the shadows will perform. Of course, swatches never tell the whole story, and the true test is always how the shades perform on the eyes. But I know I always still like to see swatches to see if I’m interested in the first place.

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Alright, so today we’re looking at a new release from Wet N Wild.

These are the new Color Icon 10 Pan Eyeshadow Palettes. If these sound familiar, it’s because it’s a new version of a fairly recent product. They had the original Color Icon 8 pan palettes way back in the day, and those were updated with the last version of the Color Icon palettes, only released in 2017, with some later versions coming in later in 2018, so they’re not that old at all. They still have these older Color Icon eyeshadow palettes available for purchase on their website, with no discount at all. There’s only one color overlap with ‘Nude Awakening’, so I can’t tell if these will eventually replace these, and they’ll release all of the same palettes later on or what. Intrigued on why they chose to change them up again, but all I knew is I saw new Wet N Wild eyeshadows so I had to try them out and see what was up.

Instead of the more flimsy black plastic of the previous ones, we have a more sturdy white plastic packaging. I will say it feels thicker and a little more higher quality than the previous, so that $1 price increase makes sense. I had issues with the hinges breaking on the other ones, and I don’t think you’ll have that issue with these.

We have 4 of these new 10 pans. I grabbed a few from a new display in Walgreens, and ordered the other shades I was missing right off of Wet N Wild’s website. They retail for $5.99 each and feature 10 shades.

Alright enough rambling, let’s look at these swatches already!

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Essie Spring 2021 Collection – Swatches & Review

Did you say you wanted more spring collections? No? TOO BAD, WE HAVE MORE SPRING COLLECTIONS. Tis’ really the season, and I always love the “start” of a new year of polish. And as always, I’m writing about spring as it snows outside, we love the Midwest. But at least today it’s cute snow, it’s fluffy snowflakes lazily falling, it’s so nice to sit inside and watch. And write about polish.

Anyways, this next one is the Essie release for Spring 2021. This is 6 shades, featuring 3 creams and 3 more shimmery shades. I picked this up from my one true love, PolishPick.com aka forever the best places for me to grab mainstream polishes. This color story is definitely a more unique one for spring, and we have some “nontraditional” colors. I loved the different range of colors we have here, and of course there are only so many pastels that can be done!

So let’s get right into the swatches!

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Orly ‘Day Trippin’ Spring 2021 Collection – Swatches & Review

We’re continuing right along with spring collections, and I’ve been loving all of the different and more unique color stories that have come out this year and season! Of course, I’ll always have a soft spot for pastels and light cream shades, but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t living for these beautiful cream shades. And speaking of beautiful creams, today we’re looking at the Orly release for Spring 2021!

This came with my Orly Color Pass! I’m sure you’ve heard me talk about Color Pass so many times before, but of course for new readers I like to summarize it. It’s a service through Orly where you pay up front once, and then throughout the year you get 4 Orly collections automatically shipped to you. Each box also always comes with different little extras – this one came with a full sized bottle of Orly Bonder, one of my favorite base coats, and a cute little key chain. It’s great IF you’re already planning on buying each of the collections anyways, like I do. But of course, if you’re only interested in individual shades, there are websites to buy them as well! It’s a great value – again, if you’re already planning on buying the collections or just want to try out some more Orly products!

Anyways, this collection is called ‘Day Trippin’. This collection is their traditional 6 bottle release, and features 6 rich cream shades. I loved this color story all together, and can’t wait to dive into swatches already, so let’s do it!

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OPI ‘Hollywood’ Spring 2021 Collection – Swatches & Review

Look at her getting back to blogging in a timely manner! We did it, 2021 is really a new year, new me moment. Alright enough kidding myself, but I really have been feeling so inspired and back in love with blogging again, and I’m just so ready to talk about all of the makeup and nail polish with you all! I’ve been feeling more productive and back into more of a routine, and I’m so excited to talk about so much nail polish and makeup with all of you.

So let’s get into it! It’s officially spring here on the blog! That’s right, as we’re in the middle of a Polar Vortex here in Chicago, as I let my faucets drip to help keep my pipes from freezing over this next week of single digit temperatures, we’re talking about spring on the nails. Spring waits for no one in the nail polish world.

Spring collections are dropping from our mainstream brands, and OPI is kicking it all off for us. This is the ‘Hollywood’ collection for Spring 2021. With this collection, also celebrating 40 years of OPI, they say they’re returning to their birthplace in Hollywood. There are a lot of light pinks and peachy creams, some bright pops of jewel-tones and a metallic and a scattered holographic shade. Overall it’s a varied color palette that we haven’t seen before and I was so excited.

Of course I bought this from my favorite site, PolishPick.com. As I say in every review about them, they have the best OPI prices and allow me to grab all of these collections to talk about with you all. Definitely go check them out.

We have a traditional 12 shade collection to look through, so let’s get right into the swatches!

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BH Cosmetics ‘Garnet’ Eyeshadow Palette – Swatches & Review

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Swatches
Eye Looks
Review

I had to scroll for quite a while, but my last makeup review was way back in January of 2020 (I was so close to almost poetically posting a new one on the same day a year later, but I digress). I can’t say why I stopped posting reviews of makeup, maybe I felt like no one was reading them or I wasn’t “qualified” whatever that could mean. But for 2021 I want to keep posting more of what makes me happy and interests me, outside of nail polish! It’ll still be 90% nail polish here, but my 2nd love is makeup and I buy just as much of it, so I might as well just tell you all how I like it!

And of course, when the pandemic hit, and I started working from home, I wasn’t wearing makeup and wasn’t as interested in new releases. But then something hit these last couple of months and suddenly I’m back in and absolutely loving putting on makeup and trying out new products. I’ve been waking up earlier before work just to listen to a podcast and test out new makeup, and I’ve been enjoying it so much as little “me time”. And it’s allowing me to really test a lot of the new products I’ve been buying! I’m still working out a system and getting more proficient at writing these reviews, but hopefully soon they’ll be more regular!

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So let’s talk about this first palette back! Back in 2019, BH Cosmetics released a Zodiac palette series, dropping a small mini eyeshadow palette each month corresponding to different astrological signs. I’ll be honest, the color stories didn’t interest me too much, and I hadn’t heard amazing things about them, so I passed on them. But this year, BH announced that they were doing a new monthly series, this time inspired by birthstones!

I’ve been hearing amazing things about BH’s newer eyeshadow formulas, so I was definitely intrigued by these mini palettes. And when I saw the color story of this first palette, I was already sold!

Since they just released the palette for February, it’s a great time to talk about January’s release. This is the ‘Garnet’ palette for January, of course, matching the birthstone of Garnet. It features a heavily red themed color story, and it was just so cute and I couldn’t resist. These retail for $9, so they’re super affordable and just too easy to add into your cart. I gave you swatches, eye looks, and then a review on the formula! I like to be super detailed, so let’s just get right into it!

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Essie Valentine’s Day 2021 Collection – Swatches & Review

LOVE IS IN THE AIRRRR. That’s right, Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. Yes, time is somehow still moving forward. Will you all be having romantic takeout while watching Netflix as well? Yes, I’ll be doing this by myself and it won’t be any different from any other day, what about it. I’m sure I’ll be having a lovely night in with my true love, nail polish.

So let’s talk about some nail polish! Today we’re looking at the Essie release for Valentine’s Day 2021. This is a 6 bottle release of various shades of red, pink, orange and purple for the upcoming holiday of love. Essie has been doing a Valentine’s Day release for a couple years now, and I enjoy when companies do less traditional holiday releases! Of course, Essie also releases like 19 collections a year, but that’s another discussion.

I went on a good ol’ fashioned nail polish hunt for these shades, and by that I mean I took the bus to a bigger Target in a different neighborhood. Listen, that was an exciting Saturday for me, okay. And we love the satisfaction of finding a display of shades you were looking for. These have been a little more elusive to find overall, but I found them in displays in Targets as well as Walgreens stores! Target shows which stores have it in stock, so you can check their website before adventuring.

They don’t have the full bottle wraps like they’ve had other years, but the caps are printed with these cute little gold foil decorations. I do love the little decorations they put on the bottles each year for this specific collection.

Alright, let’s get into the swatches already.

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Sally Hansen Insta-Dri ‘Prismatic Shine’ Collection – Swatches & Review

There’s just something so exciting to me about a new release from Sally Hansen and I can’t explain why. Maybe it’s because it’s a “drugstore” nail brand, and it’s just a little something different from the mainstreams, and it’s always exciting hunting through the shelves of a Walgreens or CVS for them.

This time it’s for the Insta-Dri line, and I do love those little bottles, especially as they’re so affordable to grab! They’ve also had some quite interesting releases, especially with the Crayola and Jelly Belly collections, so anytime they do something new I’m intrigued and have to test it out!

When I saw this collection posted by another nail account, I was immediately intrigued. There are 8 new shades and they all have ‘Prismatic Shine’ right on the front label. Sally Hansen describes them as “8 new iridescent, out-of-this-world shades to add to our Insta-Dri lineup.” So it seems like these will be permanent and not just a limited release.

I grabbed these off of the Walgreens website because I’m impatient and love the convenience of online shopping. They retail for $4.49 there, while on the Ulta website they’re $5.59 and just mixed in with all of the Insta-Dri polishes.

So let’s get right into the swatches!

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Essie ‘Not Red-y For Bed’ Collection – Swatches & Review

You know, Essie collections have started coming, and they won’t stop coming. (Yes, that’s a Smash Mouth reference there, I am NOT sorry). In the past couple of years, Essie has really ramped up their releases per year, and it can sometimes be hard to keep up. Like for example, in 2020 I have folders for ELEVEN collections that released. And that’s not even including the Gel Couture releases, the ‘Roll With It’ collection and technically, this one also released in 2020.

It’s a LOT. Listen, I can talk about how it’s a lot while reviewing them all, okay. This blog and my Instagram are always here to help you navigate all of the releases and which ones you might actually want to buy. It’s my hobby, and I love doing it. Okay yes, we got that necessary discussion out of the way, now let’s look at this newest collection, my first Essie post of 2021.

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This is the ‘Not Red-y for Bed’ collection, and it features 9 shades. We have mostly pink and red tones, along with a neutral and a couple of blues! It’s a very interesting color scheme overall, and I can’t say I can immediately think of any other collections like it. I do love the idea of a more monochromatic moment with some complimentary shades.

Of course, I purchased this from my main love, PolishPick.com. You know the drill, I love them, they have the best prices for mainstreams and super quick shipping. It’s the main way I can afford to just review all of the collections, when each shade is about half the price that they are normally.

So let’s get into the swatches!

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Orosa Beauty ‘Curtain Call’ Winter 2020 Collection – Swatches & Review

Listen, I too often jokingly say to my mother that if she had put me in ballet from a young age, I could be a STAR at this point. I have flexibility and weird feet, it could have worked, okay. Who hasn’t had a dream of being a professional ballerina? There’s a dance studio that just opened near my apartment and once it’s safe to do again, I’m DANCING.

All of these rambles have a point, I promise. They all connect to the newest collection we’re looking at today. This is the ‘Curtain Call’ release from Orosa Beauty, which they say is inspired by “the mesmerizing movement of ballet”. “Get ready for light and airy hues paired with rich jewel tones that will have you dreaming of whimsical performances all winter long.” I love a ballet inspired theme, and I think this color story fits very well. And of course, it just reminds me of my dreams.

It features 5 cream shades and 1 shimmer. I grabbed this from the Orosa beauty website during their end of year 30% off sale. The shades retail for $12 each, or $62 for the full set of 6.

Let’s get into the swatches!

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