Things I Have Been Loving.

Things I've Been Loving: Zoya Nail Polish Remover,  Oribe Superfine Strong Hairspray, Rose Mountain Herbs Argan Oil, Crystal Essence Deodorant, YSL 205 Rouge Pur Couture The Mats, Lipstick Queen Entourage, Hourglass Diffused Light, Make Up For Ever Artist Shadows ME-654, M-510, and M-600, Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Solo #2 Armani Navy, Rapidlash, Chikuhodo Z-5, Memebox Brushes, Pomellato Nude Ring, Gold Hoop Earrings, and EZsizer Ring Guards.

Things I Have Been Loving:
Zoya Nail Polish Remover, Oribe Superfine Strong Hairspray, Rose Mountain Herbs Argan Oil, Crystal Essence Deodorant, YSL 205 Rouge Pur Couture The Mats, Lipstick Queen Entourage, Hourglass Diffused Light, Make Up For Ever Artist Shadows ME-654, M-510, and M-600, Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Solo #2 Armani Navy, Rapidlash, Chikuhodo Z-5, Memebox Brushes, Pomellato Nude Ring, Gold Hoop Earrings, and EZsizer Ring Guards.

This blog centers around all the things I love.  However, sometimes there are things that are utilized (and loved) that are only mentioned in passing.  I mean really, there is only so much you can say about nail polish remover to excite the masses.  So for this post, I will briefly highlight all the things that have been on constant rotation in my routine as of late.  Don’t be surprised if an odd item makes its way toward the middle or end.  After all, I write in my kitchen with the company/distraction of my children, impending dinner and a perpetually hungry dog circling around me at all times 🙂  I hope you enjoy.

    1. Zoya Nail Polish Remover removes all traces of polish swiftly without drying out the nails or cuticles.  As an added bonus, the smell is so much more pleasant than your average drugstore polish remover.
    2. Oribe Superfine Strong Hairspray smells heavenly and the superfine mist holds the most challenging hair styles in place.  A word of caution, if used in excess the build up can feel heavy and unpleasant.
    3. Mountain Rose Herbs Argan Oil is exactly the same as Josie Maran Argan Oil, without the inflated price tag. I can purchase 8 oz. of MRH Argan Oil for $44 USD as opposed to 2 oz. of Josie Maran Argan Oil for $48.  Both are organic, cold-pressed and unrefined..you be the judge.
    4. Crystal Essence Deodorant is aluminum-free, natural and perfect for the fall/winter season.  The Pomegranate Fragrance is refreshing and non-offensive.  Even my husband and son love this brand.
    5. YSL Rouge Pur Couture The Mats 205 (reviewed here) has been worn on its own and paired with every lipstick in my collection.  The berry tone is beyond suitable for the upcoming cooler weather and the stain left behind is rather potent.
    6. Lipstick Queen Velvet Rope Lipstick in Entourage (reviewed here) is the best matte lipstick IMHO.  Do I need to say more?  Nope…I’ll stop gushing now.
    7. Hourglass Diffused Light (compared to Nars here) has been brought out of hibernation for the fall/winter season.  This ambient powder promises to diffuse the look of imperfections…yada, yada, yada….I use it with a dry BeautyBlender and use the press and roll method around the T-Zone area. However, do tread lightly with this beauty…too much will result in photo flashback in flash photography.
    8. Make Up For Ever Artist Shadows ME-654, M-510 and M-600 (reviewed here and here) have been used everyday since their purchase.  The creamy texture is beyond dreamy..try them and see.
    9. Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Solo #2 Armani Navy (reviewed here) is the best matte navy color on the market.  Not even Make Up For Ever has a navy of this caliber in their 210 color line-up.  If you are looking for truly exceptional quality matte colors..GA is your man.
    10. Rapidlash was purchased at the beginning of summer.  My typical coconut/castor oil mixture has served me very well, however, I wanted to see if I could achieve the same results in less time. Ladies this not only works, but it works a little too well, on me (I have to trim my lashes).  In all fairness, I have very long lashes naturally so my goal was to gain volume. Incredibly long lashes have not only been obtained using this serum, but it seems my once-upon-a-time voluminous lashes have magically returned.  Application has now been downsized to every other night, with the continued use of my coconut/castor oil conditioning every night.  Costco now carries this brand for $49 for a pack of two.  Bed, Bath and Beyond also carries this brand and you can use your 20% or $5 off coupons.
    11. Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush (reviewed here) is used everyday.  This beauty applies eyeshadow so quickly and defuses the most pigmented colors perfectly.  If you would like to invest in one quality Chikuhodo Brush, this would be my pick.
    12. Memebox Meme Eyebrow Brush (reviewed here) is used everyday to apply my tight line color, gel liners and/or dampened to apply powder eyeshadows as liner.  This little gem is worth the expense of the whole Meme Brush Set.
    13. Minimal Jewelry is the theme de jour.  I’m enjoying the simplicity of wearing one statement ring (Pomellato Nude Ring) with my plain 2 inch gold hoop earrings, sans necklaces and bracelets.
    14. EZsizer are wonderful ring guards used to protect rings and/or make rings fit more securely.  If you are like me and have enlarged knuckles and thin fingers, then these are a must for you.  I purchase the medium size for winter and the petite size for summer.
    15. Spirulina (read about the health benefits here) is suitable for internal and external use.  This green algae is added everyday in my post workout shake and applied once a week as a detoxifying mask. The idea for this mask came from Olivia from The Unknown Beauty Blog (here); in her wonderful post she outlines all the details to concoct this amazing mask.  Your skin feels so soft after the mask has been removed; frankly, everyone needs to get on the Spirulina bandwagon..That’s right I said it 🙂

 

Things I've Been Loving: Pure Hawaiin Spirulina.  This is the brand I use.

Things I Have Been Loving:
Pure Hawaiin Spirulina. This is the brand I use (photo courtesy of Amazon.com).

Spirulina Facial Mask

Things I Have Been Loving:
Spirulina Facial Mask.

Things I Have Been Loving: Rapidlash has not only given me length and volume, but my lashes seem darker as well.

Things I Have Been Loving:
Rapidlash has not only given me length and volume, but my lashes seem darker as well.

THE VERDICT:  If makeup could talk what would it say?

Makeup would like to know, “What have you been loving lately?”  Be well, stay safe and be happy.

-Maria

*Ifmakeupcouldtalk.com is not affiliated with any brands mentioned, all products were purchased by me, with the exception of Lipstick Queen Entourage and the Meme Brush. *Compensation is not given for any reviews. *This post contains store affiliate links. *Click on each photo to enlarge. *Click on the rose highlighted words to take you to a direct link to each product. *All opinions are my own and based on my experiences. *All photos are property of Ifmakeupcouldtalk.com unless otherwise noted.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush review, photos and comparisons.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

Chikuhodo makeup brushes are renowned for their handmade quality and attention to detail. Just like Chikuhodo Z-8 Cheek Brush (reviewed here),  Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush ($43 USD) is yet another example of an eyeshadow brush done right.  The size, shape, hair quality, design, and weight are so meticulously constructed, I often wonder why I waited so long to purchase this beauty.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

The Pros to Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush:

  1. Made from 100% Gray Squirrel.
  2. Hairs are”uncut,” shaped and assembled by hand in Japan.
  3. Substantial thickness to the handle, yet lightweight design indicate thoughtful construction.
  4. Densely packed hairs apply powdered eyeshadows easily and deposits color evenly for flawless results.
  5. Hairs are tapered with a “flat-round” shape–ideal for all over color application, crease color and lower lash line color application.
  6. Larger head size is perfect for fast application of eyeshadow during busy mornings.
  7. Soft gray squirrel hair is ideal for people with very sensitive skin..feels like silk on the skin.
  8. Has not shed one hair during usage or deep cleaning.
  9. Shorter handle (5.3 inches/13.4 cm/135 mm from tip to base) will allow people to get up close to makeup mirrors, without the annoyance of having the brush handle bump into the mirror.
  10. Wooden handle is engraved with the company name on one side and the brush name on the other.
  11. Now-eproject offers a personalized service where anyone can have their name engrave on the brush for an additional two dollars per brush.
Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

The Cons to Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush:

  1. Not sold in any retail location in the US.  Ordering such an expensive brush from an online source takes a tremendous leap of faith.
  2. People with smaller lid space will find this brush overwhelming.
  3. Gray Squirrel hair can only be used with powder eyeshadows…don’t even think about using this angel with cream eyeshadows.
  4. Deep cleaning is recommended once a month…so if you feel an overpowering urge to wash your brushes on a weekly basis…DON’T.  Chikuhodo suggests to “dry” clean gray squirrel brushes on a clean towel in-between uses.
  5. No other cons…This brush is pretty much perfect in my eyes 🙂
Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush used to apply all over lid color.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush used to apply all over lid color.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush used to apply color under the brow.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush used to apply color under the brow.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush dipped into bronzer to apply color to the eye crease.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush dipped into bronzer to apply color to the eye crease.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush used to apply color to the eye crease.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush used to apply bronzer to the eye crease.

Comparisons to Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush:

Comparisons: Billy B #8 Eyeshadow Brush, Shu Uemura #10 Flat Eyeshadow Brush, Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush, Smashbox #17 Brush.

Comparisons:
Billy B #8 Eyeshadow Brush, Shu Uemura #10 Flat Eyeshadow Brush, Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush, Smashbox #7 Brush.

Comparisons: Smashbox #7 Eyeshadow brush, Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush, Shu Uemura #10 Flat Eyeshadow Brush, Billy  B #8 Eyeshadow Brush.

Comparisons:
Smashbox #7 Eyeshadow Brush, Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush, Shu Uemura #10 Flat Eyeshadow Brush, Billy B #8 Eyeshadow Brush (click to enlarge).

  • Smashbox #7 comes the closest in size to Chikuhodo Z-5.  Both brushes perform similarly, but Chikuhodo surpass Smashbox in terms of design and softness.  Chikuhodo’s tapered head is suitable for more precise eyeshadow application, whereas Smashbox’s brush head is structured more as a blending brush.
  • Shu Uemura #10 is clearly not the same type of brush, Shu is primarily designed to lay down color on the lid.  Chikuhodo is able to deposit and blend out color at the same time.  Shu Uemura #10 is an excellent brush and has served me well for 14 years.  I prefer to use #10 when I want a heavy eyeshadow application.
  • Billy B #8 (reviewed here) is a great little brush for just about anything–the only difference other than the size, is the quality–would love it if Chikuhodo came out with a brush of this size in their Z-Series.
All eyeshadows (with the exception of the liner) were applied with Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

All eyeshadows (with the exception of the liner) were applied with Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush.

  • All eyeshadows were applied with Chikuhodo Z-5 Brush:  Bobbi Brown Cement on the mobile lid, Too Faced Bronzer in the crease, Bobbi Brown Bone under the brow bone, Cargo Water-Resistant Bronzer on the lower lash line and Bobbi Brown Espresso applied lightly in the outer corners. Chantecaille Iron Ore Eyeshadow (reviewed here) was used wet on the upper lash line with Estee Lauder Angled Eyeliner Brush.

Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow brush can be found exclusively at now-eproject.com and  Beautylish.com.

THE VERDICT:  If makeup could talk what would it say?

Makeup would tell you Chikuhodo Z-5 Eyeshadow Brush is one of those makeup tools you will always reach for, never regret buying and secretly wish for multiple back-ups.  I hope you enjoyed.  Be well, stay safe and be happy.

-Maria

*Ifmakeupcouldtalk.com is not affiliated with any brands mentioned, all products were purchased by me.   *Compensation is not given for any reviews.  *Click on each photo to enlarge. *Click on the rose highlighted words to take you to a direct link to each product.  *All opinions are my own and based on my experiences. *All photos are property of Ifmakeupcouldtalk.com unless otherwise noted.