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Shu Uemura “the lightbulb” oleo-pact review (plus a preview of a couple of Fall 2014 “Brave Beauty” products)!

Here’s a quick peek at 2 products from the upcoming Brave Beauty collection, which features intensely strong colors and beautiful printed packaging. But this post is really about the lightbulb oleo-pact!

I’ve spoken about Shu Uemura’s the lightbulb foundation and powder foundation before, but I’m not joking when I say the new oleo-pact launching in Sep 2014 is my favorite of the bestselling series so far.

The original Lightbulb foundation is better for dry skins and dry weather; I loved it when I was traveling in Japan. In warmer weather or on oily skins, it can feel slightly heavy cos of the different oils in the formula, doesn’t really set and has a tendency to shift or smear off after a few hours.

The Lightbulb powder foundation I’m afraid I never quite liked as much because I personally don’t like matte full-coverage powder foundations, and I could never get this powder “glow” with the buffer sponge.

The oleo-pact combines the best of both worlds. It isn’t as dewy as the liquid foundation, isn’t as matte as the powder, and comes in a convenient portable compact for touch-ups on the go. 


Satin finish (natural-looking glow)

Lightweight feel; not as heavy as the liquid, but not as weightless as the powder of course


This has less coverage than the original liquid foundation, but it’s still buildable to a respectable medium coverage.

Lasting power: 

I tried this on normal/dry skin in humid weather without any powder and it stayed quite fresh for the whole day (about 10 hours) without oxidizing; no oil-control but it didn’t get dry or cakey on my skin either.


  • Sustained natural glow and good skin-evening coverage without being heavy or unnatural
  • Reasonable lasting power for normal-to-dry or combi/dry skins
  • Lightweight and non-greasy feel
  • Skin-conditioning
  • Stays fresh-feeling even after experiencing some humidity and sebum over the day; didn’t bleed, streak, or cake up after sweating even without setting powder
  • Good for normal to slightly-dry or even slightly-combi/oily skins


  • Contains oils so it won’t last extremely well on oily skins, although it would do ok on combi skins if set with some powder
  • Won’t be hydrating enough if you are extremely dry
  • The dense slightly-domed bouncy sponge is a PAIN to clean, just like the other lightbulb sponges. 
  • Not enough coverage to cover more prominent blemishes; a separate concealer would be needed
  • Not refillable; I’d like to purchase a refill for a reduced price instead of throwing out the compact and paying full price each time

The Lightbulb Oleo-pact will launch in Singapore on 1 Sep for $75.

Cle de Peau Beaute A/W 2014 Celestial Radiance

What a feast for the eyes!

Cle de Peau Beaute’s Autumn/Winter 2014 collection is themed around rich, deep, luminous colors around the eyes, and lots of lashes.

I have to admit I didn’t pay too much attention to Cle de Peau makeup before this because I always thought they would be a lot more expensive than other luxe brands. That’s actually not true though. They’re expensive of course. But because they use a refillable system where you pay less for refills, and only pay for a minimal amount of cases, you actually save a lot of space, and a reasonable amount of money overall.

Eye Color Quads

I received 2 eye color quads, a Perfect Lash mascara and an Extra Rich lipstick for review, but this just makes me want to check out the other quads in the collection! The colors are gorgeous and rich and smooth; not chalky at all. 

On first sight, I was drawn to 308 the violet palette, but to be honest, 305 is more the type of quad that I would use daily. The pigmentation of 305 is also just slightly richer and smoother. 2 shades in the purple 308 palette are duochrome shades, but once applied they both look like monochromes.

The warm 305 palette has no duochromes but the colors are gorgeous and intense.

Perfect Lash Mascara

This is a curved-wand mascara, and the waterproof formula is smudge-proof and holds curl very well. It’s more a defining and lengthening mascara than a voluminizing or dramatic one in my opinion. 

I don’t usually have problems with smudging mascara usually, but I can say it took quite a bit of effort to remove this with my Bioderma. I couldn’t do it cleanly, which tells me it’s quite long-wearing. An oil-based remover would be better. 

Extra Rich Lipstick 111

In my top image, I actually had the lipstick inserted wrongly LOL. It’s meant to go in the short gold end-cap, not the long black one. I had some problems inserting it the other day, but I did manage to get it into the black, and it worked ok, so I thought “ok I guess it’s a bit different”. Then the next day, I was told it went in the other side and managed to do it when I tried again.

You will feel a lot of resistance, before a click sounds to tell you it’s locked in place. 

111 is drop-dead gorgeous pink-based nude along the lines of MAC Creme Cup or Chanel Radieuse. Absolute love. This is a definite repurchase once I finish it. 

I do have to say the squared tip is pretty but not the most practical or easy to use. I’m used to a teardrop shape and I feel I need to be more careful with this squared shape. But that’s a minor problem.

Urban Decay Ammo Palette Tutorial - Blue and Violet Eye

Here’s one Summery look with cool-toned pastels. If you like the look of colored eyeliner pencils but aren’t sure how to wear it, or worry about it taking definition away from the lash line (it can make your lashes disappear), here’s the way to do it.

Always use a black liquid liner to set a base line at the lashes. 

THEN go on top of it with a colored pencil of your choice, without completely covering the black. Leaving a tiny rim of black near the lashes will help you keep that dark definition so you get the best of both worlds.

I used 3 shades in the Urban Decay Ammo palette. A pale purple (Grifter), a turquoise blue (Shattered), and a magenta violet (Last Call). It’s an almost My Little Pony type color-scheme. I used Sephora’s Smartliner in black, and Shu Uemura’s Drawing Pencil in ME Pink 12. 

For the cheeks, I used a pink Japanese cream blush by Heavy Rotation Creamy Cheeks 02, and I varied the look with 2 lip colors. A soft pearl pink (VDL 504 Jude) and a magenta fuchsia (Bourjois Rouge Edition 07).

Favorite Orange/Tangerine Lipcolors!

Here’s a quick list of 10 orange lippies that I posted about on Dayre yesterday. 

I think there’s a lot of confusion about color groupings because tons of magazines and makeup artists call everything “coral” these days. Not everything is coral. If you need some help differentiating here we go:

Nude-orange: apricot

Pink-orange: coral

Red-orange: poppy

Above are 10 shades in varying shades of orange-tones, and if you need more detailed info on each color, visit the dayre post here!

Urban Decay Electric Palette Demo, Swatches and Review!

I am a little tardy in giving the Electric Palette a test try. I have to say the colors are incredibly fun. All aside from a couple of the shades (Chaos and Gonzo) were very smooth and easy to apply evenly.

Chaos is an ultramarine pigment, which is a pain in the behind to use in any form because it goes on patchy and uneven and refuses to stick to the lid without primer. Also, remember that a lot of these neon pigments are not meant for use on the lips, so exercise caution if you want to use any of these on your lips.

Pigmentation-wise, the proof is in the pudding. Just click to expand all the images (and right-click to open in a new tab if they don’t open at full size for you). Most of them apply smoothly aside from the 2 I mentioned above.

Aside from a little black kajal and mascara, everything else  I used to create these 2 looks is from the palette, including the brush. I didn’t use any primer.

But honestly, it’s going to be hard for regular people to use the shades here that often. There are zero neutrals in here to mix with the bright shades, so I really think this is more of a pro palette for artists who need a convenient set of bright strong colors for more editorial looks.

If you love super bright rainbow looks and will wear them out however, then by all means go for it. This is great quality. Even the brush is usable, though it’s better for packing on color intensely and not so good for blending out edges. (I had to use my finger to smoke out the wings.)

An Afternoon at Penhaligons

If you’re ready to stop smelling like everybody else, it’s time to ditch the run-of-the-mill designer fragrances and start exploring niche lines. 

One of the brands you might want to try is venerated British line Penhaligon’s. The first thing that will strike you about the store is their quaint, quirky, old-world classiness, a reference to their gentlemen’s Barbershop roots and ties with Brit royalty.

The entire place is motifed with their signature “bow”/ribbon emblem, from the tiled floor to the cabinet detailing, and even to the gorgeous royal purple wall panel in the top image. (See the Hello Kitty bows?)

Some of the oldest fragrances from the line date back about 140 years, when the line grew from a humble barber shop into one of the premier toiletry brands supplying the English royal household.

During my hour there, I was asked by Store Manager Chris what other scents I’d tried and liked in Penhaligon’s, as well as what other perfumes I liked in general. That’s a VERY hard question for me, because I own so many and I’ll change and wear scents pretty much any time of the day, even when I’m sitting at home or going to bed. So after he learnt that I already know and like Ellenisia, Gardenia, Artemisia, and Endymion, he took me deliberately AWAY from those and through 8 of some of the stronger and more distinctive fragrances in various other scent groups, including their latest release Tralala, weaving stories about each scent and deconstructing accords into single notes for me so I could make sense of them. Here are my faves.

  • Peoneve - (Floral) the first scent I tried and the one that instantly made me go “Yesssss”. This is walking through a lush green garden in bloom, and going past over-ripe tangy Bulgarian roses to a huge peony bush with bright sweet pink petals.
  • Vaara - (Oriental) this isn’t a heavy chunk-of-spices-and-resins oriental like Shalimar or Opium. This is a soft, well-bred mix of saffron, florals, sweet resins and sandalwood. Very interesting and complex, and it changes a lot on the skin from moment to moment as it warms up and reacts with your chemistry. 
  • Eau Sans Pareil (Fruity-resin) Not a typical fruity scent at all. I like raspberry when it’s done well (juicy but not sugary and artificial), and it’s done beautifully here. This scent is fruity-sweet with class and depth. After about 10mins, it warms up and gets fuzzier and becomes a sweet soft skin scent. It was a toss-up between this and Peoneve for me because they developed the most beautifully on my skin.
  • Other recommendations I sniffed in earlier visits: Ellenisia (delicate ladylike white florals, including tuberose which I love), Lily of the Valley (clean, fresh, old-school soliflore lily), Gardenia (buttery waxy gardenia; this is lovely but I didn’t get it because I already own Gardenia parfum by Chanel, and I have to say that is a firm favorite)

I picked Peoneve in the end, because smelling it just makes me happy. It’s bright, it’s lush, it’s exuberant, and it has a definite presence, whereas the other 2 runner-ups were quite soft and more “discreet”. I also like that you don’t just get a flower. You get an entire living garden, including green leaves, clean earth, and the waxy sharp butteriness of a fresh petal.

If your idea of Peony is Jo Malone’s Peony and Blush Suede, I highly recommend you go sniff Peoneve. The Malone is extremely popular, but it’s overly simplistic and watered down for the price. If you’re paying in that price range, you should definitely explore more interesting scent houses!

Scent profiling sessions are free at the boutiques and take about 30mins to an hour. You will be presented with several scents until you narrow it down to 2-4 favorites, which will be sprayed on your skin to see how they work with your body chemistry. Penhaligon’s boutiques are located at Marina Bay Sands and ION, and counters with smaller ranges are accessible at Escentials (Tangs and Paragon). 

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