Saturday, November 29, 2014

First Impressions ~ Cargo Cosmetics Shanghai Nights Eye Palette

Hi Makeup Maniacs!  Not sure if you've noticed that I'm not posting as often as I used to. Well, between family, work, and my YouTube channel, I've been having a difficult time keeping up with the blog.  Although I love completing YouTube vids, my true passion is writing, so I definitely miss posting as often as I used to.

Anywhoo, I wanted to show you something I recently hauled.  (For a video about a Crazy Collective Haul <----------- click that link)  

This is Cargo Cosmetics Shanghai Nights Eye Palette and it's pretty darn badass!  The 12 eyeshadows are just beautiful.  From neutral to cool tones, this palette has everything you need to create some wonderful looks.  

Eyeshadows Swatched without Primer
From Left to Right - Top:  Wai Tai, Skyline, Bund, Lychee, Jin Mao, and Neon
Bottom:  Hu, Street Style, Ginger, Jade, Bar Rouge, and Night Life

I've really enjoyed playing with this palette.  I bought it at Kohls for $39 and I think that is a pretty good price.

Here is a look I created with the colors Neon, Bar Rouge, and Bund (black liner was by Marc Jacobs):

I had tried two of Cargo's face palettes before, but never any of their eyeshadows, so I wasn't sure what I was getting myself into with this purchase.  The formula of these eyeshadows is a little more powdery than I prefer, but overall, I was impressed by the quality.  I do not regret my purchase!

So, on my 5 star scale, with 5 being the best and 1 being the worst, I rate this palette 4 stars!  I took away a star because I felt these shadows could be less powdery and more pigmented.  Otherwise, this palette would get a perfect score.  

I hope you enjoyed my little review of this palette.  Please check out my YouTube channel, Mel's Makeup Mayhem!  It's FREE!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Makeup Starter Kit feat. 4 Essentials!!

So, not everyone is a Makeup Maniac, huh? Who would have thunk it?!  If you are just getting interested in makeup, but you're not sure where to start, let me give you my two cents...

Here are 4 makeup must-haves to start the non-makeup user's collection!

#1.  Lipstick
You should start with the lips.  Don't worry, you don't have to go for the candy apple red or shocking violet color right away.  Baby steps.  Pucker up and say, "Yes!" to a lovely rose-toned shade.  It's a color group that looks great on lots of different skin tones.  A great, inexpensive brand to try is Milani.  They have a color called, "Plumrose"  and it's just perfect for anyone, in my opinion!
Milani Color Statement Lipstick, Plumrose- .14 oz

#2.  Mascara
Mascara not only makes your eyes appear more open, it provides definition to your eyelashes, giving you a more polished appearance.  Waterproof mascaras can be quite drying, so you only need to wear those if you are in wet and/or very humid conditions.  Otherwise, get yourself a great regular, black mascara. I suggest getting one that lengthens, as well as, gives volume.  Maybelline's the Colossal Volum' Express mascara is a great one!

Maybelline® Volum' Express® The Colossal Washable Mascara

#3.  Brow pencil or powder
Sprucing up your brows also polishes your look, but if you are just starting out, you may not know how to shape them, pluck them, or fill them in!  Anastasia Beverly Hills Beauty Express for Brows and Eyes gives you everything you need in one place!  It comes with brow wax cream to tame those wild brows and help them lie flat.  It also contains an eyeshadow duo that can double as a brow bone highlighter. Of course it contains brow powders to fill in your brows, but what really helps a "newbie" is the set of brow stencils!  These stencils can give you an outline of where to pluck your brows, depending on what shape you prefer.  They also set a guideline for filling in your brows.  I'm telling you ladies, this product is AWESOME!

Anastasia Beverly Hills - Beauty Express For Brows and Eyes

#4.  Concealer
If you don't necessarily need full coverage for your mug, or don't enjoy the feel of creams or powders on your face, perhaps concealer is the way to go. You can use it just to cover those dark spots or blemishes so that you are not uncomfortable with a face full of makeup.  However, concealer will give you a little more confidence, as it evens out your naturally beautiful skin! A great, inexpensive concealer is the NYC Liquid Concealer.  This stuff is thick enough to cover up discoloration, but will not break the bank!

Well, I hope you enjoyed my post!  Feel free to join me on my YouTube channel for some more info and fun!  Click here for Mel's Makeup Mayhem!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Nails of the Day!

Hi Makeup Maniacs! I am not the best at nails and I certainly don't have a large nail polish collection, but I do like to see my hands and feet well manicured.  I love when fingernails and toenails match.  I notice that one color in my small collection always seems to stand above the rest, especially during fall and winter.  And that is Essie's classic color called, "Wicked".

This is one of those blood red colors that looks black.  It's quite lovely and goes well with any type of clothing.  I definitely consider this a "cult classic" and a "must have" for any cosmetics junkie or makeup maniac!

I hope you liked my Nails of the Day!  For even more fun, watch some of my vids on YouTube. Give me some positive feedback and let me know if there is a certain look you'd like for me to do a tutorial for!  Mel's Makeup Mayhem!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

8 Makeup Items ALL 40-ish Women Should Own!

OK Makeup Maniacs, I want to talk about 8 cosmetics that should be in the lives of every woman who is 40 and over.  I am not trying to "sell" you on the items that I so happen to mention, I am just using them as examples of products that I like.  I want you to get a feel for what I think is truly essential to to a great makeup routine for those 40-ish folks out there.  So, without further ado, here I go...

#1.    Face primer
Face primer is designed to be worn under liquid or powder foundations.  A face primer is important because it evens out your skin tone, smooths out fine lines, and neutralizes discoloration.  When choosing a primer, be sure that it is gentle and free of harsh chemicals.  One that I really like is Benefit's The Porefessional.

#2.    A light coverage foundation
A BB cream is a good choice here.  These are great because not only do they act as a foundation, they also act as a primer, moisturizer, sunscreen, and concealer. When you use a BB cream, you can actually skip the skin primer.  These products are light and great for day to day wear.  I personally like to wear BB Creams on the weekends. They contain antioxidants and ingredients, such as, licorice that help even out skin.  One BB Cream that I like is by Tarte.  The coverage is excellent, it blends well, and it goes on smoothly.

#3.    A long-wearing, medium to full coverage foundation
This is great for a long work day or for a fun night out.  Not only does foundation act as a barrier against environmental pollutants, but it helps even out your skin, making redness and age spots less visible, which helps you feel more confident about your appearance. A good, long-wearing foundation is MAC's Studio Fix Fluid. (YES!  I finally bought/tried some MAC products)

#4.    Concealer
The name says it all.  Because it is thicker than foundation, it is better at hiding dark spots.  It can help you look well rested when you really aren't and will even out your skin even more so than foundation alone.  The key is to buy a concealer one shade lighter than your foundation.  A great, inexpensive concealer is NYC's Smooth Skin Liquid Concealer.  
#5.    Brow Color
Filling in eyebrows is a MUST, especially as we age.  Our brows get sparse with time and making them appear more "natural" draws people's eyes upward.  That lifting effect gives us a more youthful appearance.  I am personally obsessed with a few brow products by Anastasia Beverly Hills. A must have is Anastasia's Beauty Express for Brows and Eyes.  I have talked about this product many times before. It contains a brow wax, brow powders, as well as, a highlighter and eyeshadow.  It even contains brow stencils, if you want to achieve that perfect brow.
#6.    Mascara and Matching Eyeliner
I personally use black A LOT, but matching your mascara with your eyeliner makes your lashes look fuller, because after 40 (unfortunately) your lashes get thinner.  I love Physician's Formula Organic Wear Black mascara and Jessie's Girl liquid eyeliner pen.

#7.    Blush
Blush is essential because it perks up the cheeks and also gives a lifting effect when applied properly. A good pink or peach blush is good for almost every skin tone.  One that I think goes well on anyone is Nars' "Orgasm".  I think that one is self-explanatory, LOL!
And last is #8......
A sheer, yet vibrant color on the lips.
This gives you a pop of color, as well as, moisturizes the lips to keep them kissable.  One I like and I believe would look great on anyone is Revlon's Colorburst Lip Butter in "Sorbet" (#053) This formula is almost like a tinted lip balm mixed with a lip gloss and lipstick all in one!

I hope that you found this information helpful, if you did, please consider checking out my YouTube channel, Mel's Makeup Mayhem! because it is chock full of info as well!  

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

"Monarch" Palette by Kat Von D!

Hi Makeup Maniacs!  I hope you're all doing well.  I just wanted to show you the palette I've been using all week!

It's Kat Von D's Monarch palette!  This is just another great palette for fall because of the rich, reddish, gold, and brown tones.  I am OBSESSED with the color "dead head" which is this beautiful color right here:

Isn't it gorgeous?!

The entire palette is great.  The colors are quite pigmented, smooth, blendable, and last long. Here are some simple/everyday looks for you!

Please join me on my YouTube channel - click - don't forget to subscribe, comment on some videos, and give me lots of thumb up's!  :-)

As always, thank you for your support!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

My First MAC Products - Ever!!

Hi Makeup Maniacs!  A while back I wrote a blog post about never having bought anything from MAC.  Well, today I am here to tell you that I am no longer a MAC virgin.

So, let me talk about the three items I bought.  The first is the MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation that has SPF 15.  My color is NC 30.  This foundation is thick, so the coverage is medium to full.  I have used it a few times and I love it, because it covers my blemishes and large pores so well, even without concealer!

I also purchased a MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pot in the very popular color "Painterly".  I chose this one because YouTube made me do it!  Every beauty vlogger and every makeup artist starts out their tutorials by using Painterly as their base color before they continue on with their eye look.  So, the decision on which paint pot color to buy was pretty much made for me.

My last item is a MAC Amplified lip color in "Vegas Volt".  There were so many colors to choose from, I just had no idea which one to buy.  I wasn't sure if I should go with a safe nude or I decided to be a little daring and get a very vivid lip color.  This is an orange-y, coral-y, bright color that I think can be worn all year round.

I must admit that I do not regret my purchases.  Perhaps that is why MAC is such a popular just sucks you in...

Not sure if your hooked on MAC products?  Well, perhaps you need a new addiction, like Mel's Makeup Mayhem!  Check it out!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


Hello my Makeup Maniacs!  I can't believe I've reached over 150 subscribers on my YouTube channel. It may not seem like much to some, but I am truly honored.  Many of the other "tubers" have been so kind and welcoming.  It is such an amazing community.

To celebrate, I decided to do a beauty GIVEAWAY!  Here are all the details:

*GIVEAWAY begins 10/14/14 and ends on 10/21/14 at Midnight Eastern Standard Time.

*Open to folks in the U.S. and Canada

*Remember if your subscription to my YouTube channel is private, then I don't know if you're a subscriber :-(  Here's the link to my YT channel ---------> Mel's Makeup Mayhem!

*One (1) winner will be chosen using and will be contacted privately.  Name of winner will be put in the description box of the actual giveaway video after I've corresponded with the winner and the contest is officially closed.

*Winner will have 48 hrs. to respond to me, or a new winner will be chosen.  This pattern will be followed until someone claims the prizes.
1. Subscribe to my channel (or already be a subscriber)
2. Like this video
3. Share this video on Twitter, Facebook, or Google +
4. Leave a comment in comments section telling me where you shared this video (yes, I will research to see if you actually shared, Lol!)

Can't wait to make someone very happy with all these goodies!  GOOD LUCK to ALL who enter!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Palette of the Week!

Hi Makeup Maniacs!  I have been rockin' eyeshadows from my Lorac "Unzipped" palette this week and thought I'd share some information and swatches with you!
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I believe these colors are just so lovely for this fall season.  The plum-y, gold, rose gold, and browns are just stunning!  There are 10 eyeshadows altogether.  Three are matte and the rest have varying degrees of shimmer.  LOVE!
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Here are some looks I put together with this palette, as well as, some swatches!
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Color names from left to right starting from the top: Undercover, Unbelievable, Unattainable, Unconditional, Unbridled, Undiscovered, Unreal, Uncensored, Unspoken, Untamed
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Thanks for visiting, now please go take a gander at my YouTube channel...Mel's Makeup Mayhem!

Monday, October 13, 2014

First Impressions ~ Essie Sleek Stick Stickers

Hi Makeup Maniacs!  I guess I've been trying a lot of new items, because I sure am doing a lot of "First Impressions" posts, Lol! 

Well, I have been very curious about these Essie Sleek Stick Stickers for the nails, because a lot of women on YouTube are hauling and wearing these.  Let me tell you, I got a steal of a deal on these.  At Target a pack will cost you $9.99!  I bought mine at my local Dollar Tree guessed it, ONE DOLLAR!  Yeah, baby :-)

essie® sleek stick Stickers
Essie Sleek Stick Stickers in "croc'n chic"
At first I was skeptical about these things.  I worried that they would be difficult to apply and ruin my natural nails since my natural nails are quite weak, thin, and peel easily.  I thought putting these on my nails would make that situation worse, but I was soooo wrong!
So, not only was I able to apply these in 10 minutes, they stayed on for 4 day (s) with no major issues.
Application is quite easy and the directions, as well as, a small emery board, and small cuticle pusher are included in the package.  You have to wipe your clean, bare nails down with rubbing alcohol, wash your hands with soap, dry them well, push your cuticles back, and BOOM - apply.  

You choose the stickers that are the correct size for each finger, apply them, and smooth them out on your nail with your fingers.  After that, you fold the excess sticker over your nail and file the excess off using the enclosed emery board. The emery board helps to tear the excess sticker off and then you are left with nails that look as manicured as they do when you step out of the salon!

To remove them, you can just carefully peel them off.  Since my nails are weak, I first put some vitamin E oil on my nail beds to soften the stickers and then peeled. Easy, Peasy, Lemon Squeezy!

Even if these lasted one day, for the $1 I paid, it would be well worth it!  These are great for special occasions, or when you have no time or money for a professional manicure, but want those hands to look lovely!

On my 5 star scale with 5 being the best and 1 being the worst, I give these Essie Sleek Stick Stickers 5 stars!  With their simple application, staying power, and beautiful finish, these are definitely worth your money, particularly if you buy them at Dollar Tree!

Bored?  Want something to do?  Go check out my YouTube channel - Mel's Makeup Mayhem! - for more on beauty, makeup, and more!

Friday, October 10, 2014

First Impressions ~ Physician's Formula Sexy Booster Va Va Voom Mascara

Welcome to another "first impressions" blog post Makeup Maniacs!  This time I wore Physician's Formula's Sexy Booster Va Va Voom Mascara in Black for 24 hours!  Well, almost 24 hours - I made it to 22 hours, LOL!  You can check out my entire experience on video here.
Physicians Formula Sexy Booster Va Va Voom Volume Mascara BlackFirst of all, this mascara is infused with a vanilla scent.  So, it smells delicious.  Some of  its claims include:  High-Performance, Voluptuous Volume, Luscious Length, Clump Free, and Smudge Free formula that lasts 24 hours.  (Info gathered from
I went on to test its lasting power by attempting to wear it for 24 hours, which meant I had to sleep in it.
My findings:
1.  This is a very build-able mascara that is a dry formula.
2.  It did not clump after I put 4 coats on my top lashes and 2 coats on the bottom.
3. This mascara did not help with length, as much as, it helped with volume.  I thought it made my lashes look thicker, but not necessarily longer.
4. This mascara smudged.  By hour 22 - shortly after waking up, it was quite apparent that my mascara had traveled all around my eyes while I slept.

Va Va Voom mascara after 8 hours
For more information and actual footage, the video is the best way to go!  (And give it a thumbs up & subscribe to my channel while you're there!)

On my 5 star scale, with 5 being the best and 1 being the worst, I give this product 3 stars!  Mascara is not meant to be slept in, so although this mascara smudged after almost 24 hours, it was during sleep which may not be the best way to gauge its lasting power.  But because after 12 hours my eyes became irritated and because it did smudge before the 24 hours were up, I took away 2 stars.  Now, the formula is great for building volume without clumping and it dries fast.  The smell is delicious too!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

First Impressions ~ Pur Minerals 4-in-1 Liquid Foundation

Hi Makeup Maniacs!  I bought and tested yet another foundation that is out on the market.  I picked this little diddy up from Kohl's for a whopping $36! (Ugh)   It's called Pur Minerals 4-in-1 Liquid Foundation and it has an SPF of 15.
I also have to mention that I purchased the brush that was "recommended" for use with this foundation as well.  It's called the Pur Minerals Liquid Chisel Makeup Brush and it set me back $23. 
I truly only wanted to review the foundation here, but I have to say that this brush was horrible!!!  As I used the foundation with this brush for the first time, the brush shed like CRAZY!  It was quite annoying having to pick the hairs from my face, as I tried buffing in the product. Sigh.  So this BRUSH, gets a thumbs down from me.  Definitely a huge disappointment, especially considering I spent 23 bucks for it!
On to the foundation...

It is great!  The coverage is excellent. A little goes a long way with this one.  I was able to smooth out my complexion with only a few drops.  The color I selected (Golden Medium) matches my skin quite well.  And it doesn't make my skin look cakey.  I love the fact that my skin looks like skin with this!  I'm assuming that one would be able to build this product up and still get a lovely finish.  The final result is a not-quite-matte, not-quite-dewy look that lasts about 8 hours without my skin's oil shining through.

On my 5 star scale, with 5 being the best and 1 being the worst, I give this foundation 4 stars!  I took off a star for the brush.  I know I paid separately  for it, but if the company is going to recommend their brush to be used with this foundation and charge extra for it, then it should perform miracles and it fell flat!

Me - wearing the foundation :-)

Psst...Have you checked out my YouTube channel?  Well, go then...Mel's Makeup Mayhem!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

First Impressions ~ Sally Hansen's Miracle Gel Nail Polish

Makeup Maniacs, have you seen this stuff at your local drug store?  It's Sally Hansen's Miracle Gel Nail Polish.
Sally Hansen Miracle Gel
Depending on where you purchase this, you will spend anywhere from $7.99 to $9.99 per bottle.  The color polish can also be bought together with the top coat, which is actually a necessary step in this 2 step nail polish system.  The pair can be bought for anywhere between $13.99 & $15.99.
So, like I mentioned above, this is a 2 step gel polish system.  You do not require a light, unlike traditional gel nail polishes.  If you follow directions, this polish is supposed to last and give you "up to 14 days of color & shine".
Because I love the look and lasting power of gel polish, I wanted so much to try this and that's exactly what I did.  I paid $15.99 for the top coat and #400 "Smartease" which is a very pretty light pink.
Following proper directions, I put the first coat of Smartease on my clean nails (no base coat needed per package).  After letting it dry, I applied a 2nd coat.  I let that dry and then swiped on the clear top coat.
I did this on a Friday night and by Saturday evening (24 hrs.),  I had 2 chipped nails on my right hand.  Whaaa??  I thought it would last, at the very least, one week, but ONE DAY!  I was really upset that I paid so much for these products!  And I quickly learned that this stuff removes just as easily as regular polish.

On my 5 star scale, with 5 being the best and a 1 being the worst, I give this 1 star!  I will sum this up in one word:  DISAPPOINTING
Check  me out on YouTube folks :-)  Some interesting things are happening on Mel's Makeup Mayhem!