Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Time Invested In Blogging

Another blog I follow posted something recently about the time it takes to blog, and as this is a subject I often reflect upon myself,  I thought I would write about it as well.

Keep in mind for right now I am not able to blog as much as I normally do or would like to. I am going to talk about my time invested in this blog under normal circumstances,  when things in other areas of my life are not quite as demanding.

I think a lot of non-bloggers and casual bloggers do not realize how much time and effort a serious blogger puts in to what they do. It is a lot more involved than "just writing".

It is not uncommon for the posts I make here to eat up 6-8 hours of my time.  And that is JUST time spent on the post itself,  from setting up for photos to clicking publish. Some posts come together more quickly and others take even more time,  depending on what the post is and how in-depth the provided information is.  Obviously a quick NOTD or EOTD will take less time than a product review or tutorial.

But that is,  again,  just time spent on the actual post.  That does not include time spent using/testing a product to review,  or if I am doing a manicure or EOTD just for the blog the time spent creating the look.

It also does not include time spent working on the design of the blog - creating graphics,  uploading them,  organizing links and information in the sidebar etc.  Not to mention the troubleshooting to try to fix problems that may arise with the blog from time to time.  There is also reading and responding to comments and emails,  as well as time spent utilizing and interacting with other forms of social media as a supplement to the blog.

Once all is said and done,  writing this blog is truly a full time job for me.

One I do NOT get paid for.

I do have some ads here - ones that generate so little revenue in the five or so years (if I am remebering correctly) I have had them up I have yet to reach the $100 minimum cash out even once.

I DO make sponsored posts here when the opportunity arises.  Thus far the only sponsored posts I have ever done have been in the form of free product in exchange for a review.  I know some readers have a problem with blogs doing sponsored posts,  whether of this type or where there has been monetary imbursment in exchange for the post.  My only problem with these posts comes when said blogger NEVER posts their own original non-sponsored content anymore in favor of only doing sponsored posts and every one of those posts is a glowing review.  It is hard to believe and trust a person who claims to totally love every product they get for free.  As such,  when it comes to my own blog I try very hard to maintain a balance between sponsored posts and my own non-sponsored content. That balance may tip from time to time,  for example right now I really do not have much to spend on new products to swatch and review,  so if I get more sponsored opportunities then sponsored posts will be more frequent. It is that or no new product reviews.  And I also will not post strictly in favor of products I have been sent for review just because I didn't have to pay for it.  If I don't like it or think it's overpriced for what you get,  I am going to say so.

While the opportunity has not presented itself yet,  if and when it does,  I have every intention of accepting monetary imbursment in exchange for posts here.  Again I know some readers take issue with bloggers who do this.  If you don't like it. You are free to avert your eyes,  click the little x at the top of your browser window,  and remove my blog from your subscriptions.  I put a lot of time and effort into this blog.  It is truly a full time job,  and I really think given that,  I DESERVE to take advantage of the opportunity to get paid for my efforts should that opportunity ever present itself to me.

All that said,  I also want to take a minute to thank y'all for all the love and support you have given me over the years.  I know some of you have been with me from the very beginning,  when I blogged over at another site. I know things get quiet around here sometimes,  but that's life and I wouldn't change it if I could.  Y'all understand that and stick with me through thick and thin,  and I love you so much for that.  I miss being able to write here more often and am working on getting things back to normal but it is hard,  because it requires money I simply don't have,  and there are so many other things that need dealt with that are more important than the internet and computer issues.  We live in a society that sees the internet as a necessity but the fact is,  it isn't and when money gets tight (or tighter than usual as the case may be) the internet is among the first of the expenses that can be cut to make affording other things like food and water a little more doable in the "lean times". I have been in a pretty rough patch for a while now and it is about to get worse but hopefully that means it won't be too much longer before things start getting better again.  I have an awful lot on my plate to deal with right now,  and y'all sticking with me through this madness that is life means the world to me.  I do get to post to instagram pretty regularly, so if you don't already and would like to,  make sure you click on over to follow me there.  (See link in sidebar to the right.)

Thank you again for sticking with me.  I may not be Kandee Johnson famous,  and truthfully I wouldn't want to be,  but I do have an awesome group of readers,  followers,  and friends here.  Y'all are truly the best!


Thursday, July 17, 2014

Revlon Colorstay Moisture Stain Review

I absolutely adore my Revlon Just Bitten Balm Stain. While as I have gotten older I have developed more of a preference for less glossy finishes in my lip products,  I do still love gloss sometimes.  (Hence my owning every shade of Hard Candy Glossaholic. Lol) So naturally I wanted to try Moisture Stain.

The product claims from Revlon,  as found on their web site:

• Drenches lips in glossy wet color

• Ultra-light creamy lipstain with Vitamin E and Aloe

• 88% of women felt lips were instantly moisturized without stickiness

I picked up the shade London Posh. I have to say I wish makeup companies would come up with a better way of providing a visual of lip colors because so often you don't get what you were expecting.  As was the case with this.  Based on the tube,  I thought this was going to be a rosy mauve. Instead it is a rather strongly orange based deep apricot. On their web site this color is shown as a pale peachy nude.  Even further from the true color than what you see before opening the tube.  (I never trust company swatches online,  it seems they are never remotely close to the actual colors.)

That said,  I don't hate the color. I don't love it either,  and I am bummed it is nothing like I anticipated.  It is not a color I would choose. I am not a fan of orange lip colors,  they don't generally work well with my skin tone.  This is a light enough shade and has just enough pinkness to it that it isn't too bad. It doesn't look quite as orange once applied due to the natural pigment in my lips,  but it is still a bit too orangey for my preferences. I paid $10 for it so you can bet I will use it. But based on color alone,  I would not repurchase.

All pictures were taken outdoors in natural shaded sun light without flash. Pardon my freckles.  They came with the red hair.  ;)

Now let's discuss other aspects of the product.

I like the shape of the sponge tip applicator.  It allows for more precise application than your standard doe foot applicators,  I think,  and also pick up plenty of product for application.  You don't have to dip back into the tube over and over to get more product. What is on the applicator when you open the tube is plenty.

Drenches lips in glossy wet color claim - I would have to say yes.  (See pictures above.) It feels a little weird going on.  I can't figure out how to explain it.  It's kind of like when you apply lotion when your skin is still wet after a shower - sort of slippery,  for lack of a better word.

Ultra light - Again I have to say yes, the product meets the claim.  It is a very lightweight lip color.  It feels smooth and creamy on the lips,  without being heavy at all. It doesn't feel like you have product on your lips.

Instantly moisturing without stickiness claim - Eh...  Not so much in my opinion.  It isn't sticky,  but I wouldn't say my lips feel moisturized. It isn't drying,  but I personally don't feel it is hydrating either.  My lips just feel normal.

Notice while this product is called a stain,  there are no claims that it is long wearing.  I think this being called a stain is misleading.  After using it almost daily for a week now,  I can say it absolutely is NOT a stain.  I would consider it more of a standard lip gloss,  with above average staying power.  It will leave behind marks on your glasses/bottles of things you drink.  It does transfer readily at the touch.  (Your SO will have visual evidence on them if you smooch.) It does seem to hold up fairly well through sipping a beverage frequently,  but you're going to have to reapply after eating. It simply does not wear as a stain,  contrary to the name Moisture Stain.

If I look at the product as a stain,  I am highly disappointed. Considering the product strictly as a gloss,  it is average,  or perhaps a bit above average at best. Is it worth the price? I can't honestly say I feel like it is worth the $10. These days $10 for a ds lippy is no longer that crazy,  and isn't really far from the average anymore.  But that doesn't automatically mean the value is there.  In this case I don't feel it is.

Have you tried any of the colors from this line?  What are your thoughts?


Sunday, July 6, 2014

I must apologize for my continued absence here.  Money is tight and life is crazy.  Being an adult is so over rated...

I haven't had time to do my nails lately or for makeup either. Even when I do manage to squeeze in some time for one or the other,  I never seem able to also get time in for pictures or to post.  This EOTD is one I did probably about a month ago but I just have not had time to post it till now.

I did this look using colors from my Amuse 96 palette. For the liner I used one of the shadows in conjunction with Manna Kadar trans-fix, which I could have sworn I reviewed here but it seems I didn't.  It is a product you can use to transform eye shadows into long-wearing eye liner. Now that I see I didn't review it,  I will add it to my list of posts to make in the future when I can make time to get it done.  Which can hopefully be soon,  but I can't make any promises.



Saturday, June 28, 2014

SinfulColors Summer 2014: Silk + Satin and Full Throttle Collections


SILK + SATIN A New Demi-Matte Collection for Summer

Slip into summer with this sinfully luxurious new nail polish collection from SinfulColors. This NEW demi-matte silk texture in summer brights is a must have fashion accessory. In rich matte shades and lustrous textures, they're guaranteed to add a little sunshine to your summer style. The SinfulColors Silk + Satin collection features sultry blues, pale banana yellow, fruity coral, even soft silver. And, for a glamorous twist, add SinfulColors Clear Topcoat on tips, or in creative designs to add a satin shine to these stunning silk

The six silky hues from the Silk + Satin SinfulColors collection clearly indicates a bright summer forecast ahead.

Matte About Blue: A matte-nificent cornflower
Pipaya: A soft flash of coral 
Prime Purple: A delicate dose of lilac 
Real Teal: A quiet mermaid green 
Silver Solution: A gentle, shimmering silver 
Solar Flux: A subtle touch of yellow

Today I have swatches of Pipaya,  Prime Purple,  and Real Teal for you. 

Up first,  Pipaya: 

Described as "a soft flash of coral", there is nothing "soft" about this gorgeous,  summery shade!  It is a very vibrant deep red based coral. The consistency is slightly thin but not so thin that it is difficult to work with.  It is a little jelly-like,  and a little sheer with one coat.  It dries fairly quickly to a satiny,  semi-matte finish. This is a perfect "beach or pool" color for summer and is one of my favorites of those in this post.  Here it is pictured at two coats without topcoat,  outdoors in natural overcast lighting without flash. 

Next,  Prime Purple: "A delicate dose of lilac" describes this shade perfectly.  Y'all know how I love my purples,  lilac being among my favorite shades (and my favorite flowers! ) so I am completely in love with this one!  It is similar to Pipaya in texture and consistency,  though it is a bit more sheer.  I found this one needed three coats for optimal coverage as it was a little bit streaky as well. Here it is pictured at three coats without topcoat,  outdoors in natural overcast lighting without flash. 

Real Teal: The description of "Quiet mermaid green" is again perfect for this color,  in my opinion.  Similar to Pipaya and Prime Purple in texture and consistency,  this one is also fairly sheer and somewhat jelly-like. The addition of shimmer gives this shade some added depth and interest and leaves it with a more silky looking finish. While greens are not normally among my favorite nail polish hues I find I am really very pleased with this one and it is another of my favorites from the colors shown in this post. Here it is pictured at two coats which I found ideal though still just slightly sheer,  a third coat will provide full opacity if it is preferred. It is shown without topcoat and outdoors in natural overcast,  partly sunny lighting without flash. 

SinfulColors Silk + Satin, $1.99 Walgreens and other mass retailers for July 2014.

FULL THROTTLE Racy Shades for Summer

Pedal to the medal nail polish ranks big this summer. Think racy shades in rubberized textures. SinfulColors introduces its Full Throttle collection this summer with a starting lineup of five smoking hot hues that'll put your nails into overdrive. The ramped-up texturized shades range from radiant red to a powerful punch of purple to fiery orange.

Here, these five race-iest colors are guaranteed to make you look like a champion, on and off the tracks! 

Rain Rubber: A brilliant burnout blue 
Burn Rubber: A fiery-fueled orange 
Race Rubber: A powerful punch of purple 
Rubber Ball: A passionate pit stop pink 
Red Tired: A racy, radiant red

From this collection I have swatches of Rain Rubber,  Rubber Ball,  and Red Tired today. 

Rain Rubber: This is a pretty deep sky blue. It initiallyblooks like a standard creme on application but as it begins to dry the rubberized texture becomes noticeable. I found the formula to be a little sheer and there was some streaking at one coat, so a second coat was needed to even things out.  The formula is a little thick and it dries quickly which contributed to the streaking.  If you can be quick enough it is easily good to go at just one coat.  Here it is pictured at two coats without topcoat,  outdoors in natural overcast, partly sunny lighting without flash. 

Rubber Ball: This is a summer-standard hot pink hue. Similar to Rain Rubber in consistency and texture but I found this one thinner, almost too thin. It dried a little slower so it was easier to work with in terms of having some time to work with it before it started to set,  so there were no issues with streaking.  Here it is pictured at one coat without topcoat,  outdoors in natural overcast, partly sunny lighting without flash. 

Red Tired: Lastly is this almost neon bright red.  The consistency is between that of Rain Rubber and Rubber ball,  making it a pretty ideal formula to work with.  It applied easily and was good to go with just one coat.  This is another of my favorites from the shades in this post - who doesn't love a great,  bright red polish?  Here it is pictured at one coat without topcoat,  outdoors in natural overcast,  partly sunny lighting without flash. 

I am a little undecided how I feel about the rubberized texture of the Full Throttle collection.  They are fairly smooth to the touch,  just a slightbgrittiness almost like a fine grit sandpaper.  I feel like the texture is most easily noticed visually in Rain Rubber while Rubber Ball and Red Tired require a slightly closer look to really see the texture. I love the red so much,  especially,  there is a good chance the finish will grow on me. 

SinfulColors Full Throttle, $1.99 at Rite Aid in July 2014 and Walgreens for August 2014.

You can "like" SinfulColors on Facebook @ SinfulColors Professional and follow them on Twitter @ SinfulColors_NP to keep up to date on all the latest colors and collections. 

The product(s) featured in this post were sent to me for review. All opinions are my own based on my experience using the product(s).