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    Affordorable.com

    is a virtual space where Liyana Aris documents her evolving modest personal style, which is based on the art of looking casually stylish while still remaining modest and doing it all on a budget; about 93% of her closet are filled with affordable things. (PS: The remaining 7% has a lot to do with her secret addiction to Adidas shoes and her occasional splurges on discounted high-end bags and clutches, shhh.) [+]
    29.5.12 .

    I got a bunch of The Balm products for my birthday earlier this year: the Nude'Tude palette, Plump Your Pucker lipgloss (coconut flavoured), Meet Matt(e) palette and Hot Mama blusher/shadow (you can check out my review on Meet Matt(e) here: the Balm Meet Matt(e)).


    I've only seen the the "naughty" version of the Nude 'Tude palette here and this is how it looks like on the inside:


    The first time I opened it, I saw that some of the shadows have slightly dusted the mirror in the palette. Not that I was too bothered because you could wipe the smudges off. If you like your makeup palettes to come with a mirror, you might just like this one as the mirror is pretty generous in size. As with all The Balm palettes, be sure not to get the palette near anything wet as the packaging is made from cardboard-like material.

    The Balm Nude'tude palette's 12 colours:


    Swatches (no primer underneath), from left to right:


    Colour decriptions:-
    Sassy = frosty white
    Snobby = shimmery yellow gold
    Stubborn = shimmery-pearly light pink
    Stand-offish = frosty light pinkish gold
    Selfish = frosty greyish brown taupe
    Sultry = satiny-almost matte medium brown
    Sophisticated = chocolate with bronze shimmers; i love that the shimmery particles are of a different colour than the shadow!
    Schitzo = shimmery-pearly golden brown
    Sexy = matte dark burgundy
    Silly = copper-brown with gold sparkles
    Serious = matte black
    Sleek = matte dark cocoa brown

    I wonder how long it took to come up with names starting with 'S' for all 12 colours? That must have been quite a fun process, I should think.

    Verdict:
    I absolutely LOVE this palette! My favourites are Sleek, Sexy and Sultry, and the ones I like less are Snobby and Stubborn. Snobby has poor colour payoff and as for Stubborn, I do think the colour looks adorable in the pan but on my colouring it looks all wrong. I might have to get creative in how to incorporate the colour into my makeup looks.

    This palette retails for RM 115 at Sasa here in Malaysia. I never finished any of my eyeshadow so I always think of the palette's price, instead of doing the individual calculation e.g. 115 divided by 12 for the price of each individual shadow. For RM 115, it's quite a bargain for the quality you get. Once in a while Sasa offers 15% off all The Balm products so if you're interested in The Balm, make use of that.

    Nude 'Tude is a palette comprised of "nudes" but the great thing is you get an incredible variety of nude shades. Instead of all earthy colours, Nude 'Tude offers slight pops of colour with nude-y pinks and golds and bronzes, which I find refreshing. The pigmentation mostly does not disappoint, except for Snobby. I'd definitely recommend this palette to everyone.

    More photos of swatches:

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    29.5.12 .

    I got a bunch of The Balm products for my birthday earlier this year: the Nude'Tude palette, Plump Your Pucker lipgloss (coconut flavoured), Meet Matt(e) palette and Hot Mama blusher/shadow (you can check out my review on Meet Matt(e) here: the Balm Meet Matt(e)).


    I've only seen the the "naughty" version of the Nude 'Tude palette here and this is how it looks like on the inside:


    The first time I opened it, I saw that some of the shadows have slightly dusted the mirror in the palette. Not that I was too bothered because you could wipe the smudges off. If you like your makeup palettes to come with a mirror, you might just like this one as the mirror is pretty generous in size. As with all The Balm palettes, be sure not to get the palette near anything wet as the packaging is made from cardboard-like material.

    The Balm Nude'tude palette's 12 colours:


    Swatches (no primer underneath), from left to right:


    Colour decriptions:-
    Sassy = frosty white
    Snobby = shimmery yellow gold
    Stubborn = shimmery-pearly light pink
    Stand-offish = frosty light pinkish gold
    Selfish = frosty greyish brown taupe
    Sultry = satiny-almost matte medium brown
    Sophisticated = chocolate with bronze shimmers; i love that the shimmery particles are of a different colour than the shadow!
    Schitzo = shimmery-pearly golden brown
    Sexy = matte dark burgundy
    Silly = copper-brown with gold sparkles
    Serious = matte black
    Sleek = matte dark cocoa brown

    I wonder how long it took to come up with names starting with 'S' for all 12 colours? That must have been quite a fun process, I should think.

    Verdict:
    I absolutely LOVE this palette! My favourites are Sleek, Sexy and Sultry, and the ones I like less are Snobby and Stubborn. Snobby has poor colour payoff and as for Stubborn, I do think the colour looks adorable in the pan but on my colouring it looks all wrong. I might have to get creative in how to incorporate the colour into my makeup looks.

    This palette retails for RM 115 at Sasa here in Malaysia. I never finished any of my eyeshadow so I always think of the palette's price, instead of doing the individual calculation e.g. 115 divided by 12 for the price of each individual shadow. For RM 115, it's quite a bargain for the quality you get. Once in a while Sasa offers 15% off all The Balm products so if you're interested in The Balm, make use of that.

    Nude 'Tude is a palette comprised of "nudes" but the great thing is you get an incredible variety of nude shades. Instead of all earthy colours, Nude 'Tude offers slight pops of colour with nude-y pinks and golds and bronzes, which I find refreshing. The pigmentation mostly does not disappoint, except for Snobby. I'd definitely recommend this palette to everyone.

    More photos of swatches:

    28.5.12 .

    I recently got an email from someone asking me about how i got my Real techniques brushes and I was instantly reminded of my undone review on them, so here it is!

    If you want to read more info on the brushes and a little story on how I came to purchase them online, I wrote more details in an earlier post Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman Brushes, right after I had just gotten these brushes in the mail and washed them for the first time.

    Some positive points about all of these brushes:
    - All the brushes have white tips, which makes for easy washing! If the tip isn't completely white after washing, it means your brush isn't completely clean.
    - No shedding whatsoever with these.
    - They all have a flat base so they can stand on their own (not that I make them stand, I'm too worried they would topple over and get dirty!)

    I will  further break down the good and the bad of each brush now.

    Stippling Brush


    What I use it for: Apply foundation

    The Good
    • Blends foundation beautifully
    • Allows reaching of crooks and nooks of the face (I initially thought it was too small and stumpy but the size turned out to be a blessing)
    • Bristles appeared firm and stiff but are soft and gentle on skin
    • Handle seemed too thick at first but it actually allows better handling

    The Bad
    • Can't think of any!


    Buffing Brush


    This brush comes in the Core Collection with three other brushes.


    What I use it for: Apply foundation

    The Good
    • Super soft
    • Buffs out foundation perfectly
    • Even better than the amazing stippling brush! (I used to love the stippling brush more but now I reach for this a lot more)
    • Reaches all crooks and nooks of the face
    • Thick handle allows good grip

    The Bad
    • None!


    Multitask Brush


    The multi task brush can be found in the Travel Essentials kit with two other brushes.


    What I use it for: Apply powder, blush and bronzer; could probably be used for applying foundation as well

    The Good
    • Multitask brush can really multitask!
    • Soft and gentle

    The Bad
    • A little too stiff so have to be gentle when using it; might wipe foundation off face if applying powder / blush / bronzer too hard with this brush
    • Better for pressing product into the skin than blending for above reason


    Blush Brush


    What I use it for: Apply blush and powder

    The Good
    • So fluffy and oh-so-soft
    • Blends blush like a dream! Blush seems to "melt" into skin
    • Doesn't wipe off foundation

    The Bad
    • Humongous, thus intimidating at first sight; but this applies in terms of appearance only. I only use the tip of the brush anyway, so basically the size only bothered me before I used the brush


    Contour Brush

    This one comes with the buffing brush in the Core Collection.

    What I use it for: Applying bronzer and blush

    The Good
    • Easy to contour as it fits right in the contour of cheeks
    • Good at blending
    • Soft

    The Bad
    • Might be good at blending but a fluffier brush is needed to blend the edges of contour a little better


    Domed Shadow Brush


    Domed shadow brush is included in the Travel Essentials set.

    What I used it for: Apply concealer under the eye and on spots

    The Good
    • Great at blending concealer

    The Bad
    • A little too big and bushy for me for applying eyeshadow on the eye (not that it matters because it's just perfect for concealing)


    I didn't take any photo of three other brushes, which are:

    Pointed Foundation Brush

    This is found in the Core Collection set.

    The Good
    • Blends cream products well
    • Soft
    • Small size with pointy tip allow reach of crooks and nooks
    The Bad
    • Much too small for applying foundation all over face; takes too long


    Essential Foundation Brush

    This is found in the Travel Essentials kit.

    The Good
    • Blends cream products well
    • Soft
    • Small size so allows reach of crooks and nooks
    The Bad
    • Too small for applying foundation all over face; takes too long


    Detailer Brush

    The detailer brush is part of the Core Collection.

    The Good
    • Good at applying lipstick
    • Good for spot concealing

    The Bad
    • Better lip / spot concealing brushes out there

    All Real Techniques brush sets come in a panoramic case with this tag attached to it:


    Final verdict: Overall I am a huge fan of Real Techniques brushes and would not hesitate to recommend them to any makeup lover. I bought these brushes on iHerb.com for about RM 200. If I had purchased the same brushes here locally I would've spent up to RM 400, which is double of what I paid on iHerb.

    However I do understand that it's more convenient and a lot faster to buy brushes straight from a local store. In this case, Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman is available for purchasing in Shins store in Malaysia. I also get that there's always the chance of your parcel getting lost along the way.

    That being said, I do highly recommend iHerb.com as I think it's a reliable website. I didn't find any negative review on iHerb before I used it which boosted my confidence in buying the brushes through them. It took them three days (THREE days only!) to send the brushes to me, so I am definitely a satisfied iHerb customer. Besides, the brushes are just so much cheaper to be bought online! Real Techniques brushes are supposed to be in the affordable range but you wouldn't think so with their local Malaysian Ringgit price tag.

    If you're interested in buying the brushes from the same site where I bought them, go to this link: iHerb: Real Techniques

    I really do hope I can expand my Real Techniques collection soon!

    Update (March 2014): Sam's sister Nic has joined in to be a collaborator so the brushes are now called Real Techniques by Sam & Nic Chapman. A few of the brushes I wrote about in this post are no longer listed in their official website but there are some new ones that I can't wait to get my hands on!

    xxoo

    3.5.12 .


    This look is similar to the one i wore when i was my cousin Laila Fasyah's (Achot!) wedding on her husband's side.


    The superstar in this look is one of my most favourite eyeshadows ever, Jealous Jordana from The Balm, a rich dark emerald green.

    If you like the look, just read on!

    1. Apply foundation - i used Avon Ideal Liquid Foundation in Pure Beige - then apply an eye primer. It's always a good idea to prep your eyes before a smokey eye look to prevent it turning into a racoon eye look. Then the first eyeshadow i applied right into my crease was Bronze by MAC from my 6 Dashing Lassies Eye Shadows palette. Blend the colour around.



    2. Pack on Jealous Jordana on the lids right up to the crease.




    3. Make a 'V' shape at the outer corner of your lid with a dark brown colour. Blend the colour around, staying just at the outer corner.



    4. Line your lower lashes and in between them with Jealous Jordana.



    5. Make the lower lashes smokier by adding the same dark brown we used earlier on the outer third only.



    6. Line your waterline with either a black pencil liner or gel liner.



    7. Apply concealer under your eye area to get rid of dark circles. Even if you don't have dark circles, appying concealer can brighten up your whole face. Conceal any spots you might have.



    8. Powder your face where needed; for my oily/combination skin, it's the whole face. Get mascaraed with your most volumising mascara! I chose not to apply any blush, instead i straightaway contoured my cheeks with my Hot Mama bronzer from The Balm. Pucker up with your favourite nude lipstick and lipgloss.


    Now it's done!




    More photos: