High Voltage Cosmetics Amp'd Up Gloss Impressions

Please read this post to see my updated opinion on the company.

I just read on the High Voltage Cosmetics facebook that the Amp'd Up Glosses will soon be discontinued.Looks like they're staying!

Anyway, I'm not sure if I had the Amp'd Up Glosses overly hyped in my head or what but I'm a little disappointed in my order. I love branding of the company and Jasmine seems like an amazingly sweet person so it's a little hard not to give it a glowing review.

I ordered on the 22nd, it shipped the 27th and got here yesterday. I bought three samples of the Amp'd Up Glosses in Jitterbug, Trendsetter, and Malicious and they're packed in clamshells with enough for a couple of applications. There is also a sticker on the back of the clamshells with the full ingredient list. Although unscented I actually thought they smelled a bit minty.

I apologize for the lack of swatches for Jitterbug and Trendsetter. For the life of me I could not get lip swatches that were color accurate and I'd rather not have any lip swatches as opposed to having inaccurate ones.

My opinions are different for all three colors so I'll talk about them individually.

Malicious looks very deceiving at first. It appears so dark in the clamshell but when you apply it on your lips or swatch it, it matches the site color. It is a gorgeous berry color with a frost to it. This one was the best out of the three that I got. It had a soft and creamy texture, very reminiscent of the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams. I had no problems with getting it even on my lips. This also acts as a lip stain.

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Jitterbug is described as a creamy light salmon pink. My beef with this is that my sample doesn't look like the official picture at all in the clamshell or on my lips. In my opinion it looks way more salmon/coral/orangey although I couldn't capture the brightness in the picture. I had a problem with the texture because some of the sample was creamy like Malicious and some of it was harder like a lipstick which is a little bothersome.

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Trendsetter is described as a natural pink. I think this is closer to the official product picture but a little bit darker. This one I'm just meh on. I couldn't get this one to go on nice and even on my lips. This also had an uneven texture throughout. In the picture you can see the larger pieces that were hard like lipstick but the surrounding product is soft and creamy. I also had problems with smaller hard pieces of the gloss dispersed throughout so I had to pick them out because they wouldn't blend out on my lips.

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I really liked Malicious but I'm not sure the Amp'd Up Gloss formula is for me. Everyone talks up High Voltage so I'm wondering if I just got a bad batch. I think I'd like to try her more popular Lip Candies instead.

I'm not going to completely write High Voltage off quite yet; I think my first impressions just aren't that great. Because of my experiences with them, I find I can't recommend them. I don't like that Jitterbug looks so different from the product photo and the inconsistency with the textures. I imagine its because of the different pigments used for each product but I think there should be some consistency in the product line.

If you're interested in trying High Voltage, I would highly recommend you add their facebook. They announce their sales there frequently. Details on the site and on the facebook page.

Putting my Sleek Storm Palette to Good Use FOTD

Sharing a camera with my sister is a bit difficult because she usually has custody most of the time. Luckily I got to use it so I wanted to show off the make up that I've been wearing almost daily.

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ELF Mineral Eye Primer
Sleek Storm Palette
- The 2nd shadow in the top row in the inner corner
- The 4th shadow in the top row in the inner half
- The 3rd shadow in the top row as a highlight
MUA Pearl 11 Eye Shadow in the outer half

Wet n Wild Brow and Eye Liner in Mink Brown for my eye brows


MUA Eye Shadow Review

I did things a bit backwards, I probably should have been extolling the virtues of Make Up Academy before giving away some of their eye shadows. The price of these shadows are so low so I think it's easy to brush them off but I promise you, they're one of the best I've ever tried.

It honestly doesn't feel like a £1 eye shadow, the pigmentation exceeds the price point and you get 2 grams of product. When I was on vacation and weather permitting, I wore the hell out of Pearl 11 eye shadow. It's a gorgeous neutral brown that works well with my neutrals color phase.

I've already posted the swatches several times before, but here they are again in case you needed a reminder. I had excellent wear with these eye shadows over primer.

The shadows are not too soft yet not too firm. I like Wet n Wild eye shadows but in comparison these are much firmer and it picks up excellently.

From left to right, Pearl 9, Pearl 12, Pearl 11, Matt 20.


From left to right, Pearl 9, Pearl 11, Pearl 12, Matt 20

MUA Shade 9, 11, 12, and 20

Here's a better view of the blue duochrome in Pearl 9

MUA Shade 9, 11, 12, and 20

and here's a better view of the green duochrome in Pearl 12

MUA Shade 9, 11, 12, and 20

If you're interested in these shadows and can't get your hands on them, you can enter to win the last two eye shadows in this post!

Sweetening the Pot, or My Giveaway Rather

So I'm changing the rules of my giveaway a tad bit and adding in a prize that I think you guys will like. I originally had it as US only because I was iffy on shipping a liquid, but I've decided to make it International and to have the Bioderma Crealine as a second place prize for someone from the US if the first place winner does happen to be from outside the US.

Most of my past giveaways have been International and I think it's something I should stick to. You guys international to the US deserve some English love too! The giveaway page here has been updated with the new rules. With regards to adding in something, does this look familiar?

Sleek Original Palette

Yeah I'm adding in the Sleek Original palette as a prize.

I kept looking at the eye shadows and I came to the realization that you guys deserve it instead. Thank you for reading and commenting on my blog. For me blogging has very much become an artistic journey from learning how to write to learning how to take good pictures for color accuracy. I try to do it for you guys so thank you for reading!

The giveaway will be extended another week so you guys have until July 16th to enter!

MUA Shade 12 Eye Shadow vs Wet n Wild Comfort Zone Definer Comparison

I got the Make Up Academy Eye Shadow in Shade 12 specifically because I heard that it was a great dupe of MAC's Club eye shadow. I have the Wet n Wild Comfort Zone 8 pan palette and it's got a similar color so I thought it might be good to compare the Wet n Wild shade with MUA.

If you want to win the MUA Eye Shadows and you're in the US, enter my giveaway here!

For those not familiar with Make Up Academy, it is a make up brand with everything priced at one pound. MUA is only sold in Superdrug whereas Wet n Wild is easily available in the US. The Wet n Wild Comfort Zone palette is $4.99 and has eight pans of eyeshadow at 8.5 grams total. The MUA shade is about $1.62 when converted from pound to dollar for 2 grams of product.

Here are swatches of the two colors, Wet n Wild on the left and MUA on the right. This was over ELF Mineral Primer. Hopefully you can tell but the Wet n Wild duochome is much bluer and brighter. The base color is very similar, I couldn't tell much of a difference.

Wet n Wild and MUA comparison

I also swatched them over black eyeliner. I wish the pictures made the difference more obvious but I think you can tell that the MUA shade has a more muted duochrome

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The Wet n Wild eye shadow is a little softer in texture than the MUA shade. Because of that the Wet n Wild eye shadow seems a less stable and much more prone to breaking.

If I had to pick a favorite, it would honestly be the Wet n Wild shade because I'm hooked on the brighter duochrome look. This does not mean that I don't like the MUA eyeshadow, it's one of the best drugstore eyeshadows I've ever used and something EVERYONE with access to a Superdrug must get.

CLOSED Back from Vacation Giveaway!

*Please read the updated rules!*

I really couldn't go to England and France without getting some goodies to give away! It isn't much, but maybe for people who don't have access to some of these things it'll still be something good to win.

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Sleek Original Palette

You can win a 100mL bottle of Bioderma Crealine H20 Make Up Remover (recently revamped as Sensibio H20 although the pharmacies I went to still had it as Crealine), two Make Up Academy Eye Shadows in Shade 12 Pearl and Shade 20 Matt AND a Sleek Palette in Original.

For those not familiar with Make Up Academy, it is a make up brand with everything priced at one pound. For something so cheap, they're very pigmented and high quality!

Here are swatches of the MUA eyeshadows, you'll be winning the middle and far right eyeshadows. Unfortunately I don't own another Original palette to swatch, you can look at Vesna's swatches!

MUA eyeshadows

The Bioderma Crealine H20 is a really popular product among make up artists (like Lisa Eldridge who is probably my make up artist favorite of the moment) but it isn't sold in the US.


US Only unfortunately :( I went back and forth about whether I should have it open internationally and I think it might just be iffy since I am shipping a liquid. My next giveaway featuring one of my favorite lipsticks will be open international though!

Yeah I lied, I'm making it international and I've added the Sleek palette as a prize. However, I am sticking to not shipping the Bioderma Crealine overseas; if the first winner is international I'll just do a second drawing and let someone from the US win it as a second place prize. I'm going to extend it another week too just so I can compensate for changing the rules.

This will end July 16th. It isn't a requirement to be a follower in order to win. I will email the winner and they have 48 hours to respond otherwise I shall pick a new winner!

Mandatory Entry- Write a comment telling me what products YOU wish you could get your hands on that aren't available in your country. Please leave your email address in the comment, ex. m.stefanily at gmail dot com and you do it in that format to help combat spammers.

Extra Entry: For an extra entry, tweet this "Win two MUA shadows and a Sleek Palette from @Maimaimaiii http://bit.ly/l2P5kF"and write ANOTHER comment. It'll help me keep track of things.

Good luck to everyone!

Sleek Storm Palette Swatches and Review

I decided to swatch the Sleek Storm Palette and MUA eyeshadows that I got while I was on vacation in England. I'm so sad that I don't have easy access to these eyeshadows because they're utterly amazing. I can get Sleek online, but it's $13.50 to ship to the US which is highway robbery! Still though, these palettes are amazing.

Sleek Storm Palette

Sleek Storm Palette

Swatches of the top row.


First color: This is a coppery bronze that is high shine metallic which I felt was a little less pigmented than the rest of the bunch.

Second color: Although this looks pure white on camera, it's actually more of a gold toned white. This fits really well with the rest of the palette.

Third color: This is a light brown matte nude. It isn't unpigmented at all, it actually just perfectly blends into my skin so you can't really see it.

Fourth color: This is more of a true gold that's super metallic.

Fifth color: This is a pink that had a slightly flakey texture. If you've ever used MAC Rose or Kitschmas pigment then you'll understand what I mean.

Sixth color: This was a semi metallic burgundy/maroon. I liked that this shade was included to offset the pink.

Bottom Row swatches


First color: This is a red toned dark bronze brown.

Second color: This is a grey toned blue.

Third color: This is a shiny metallic forest green.

Fourth color: This is a beautiful metallic purple toned navy blue.

Fifth color: This is a nice, slightly ashy brown.

Sixth color: This is a matte black that seems to be included in all the Sleek palettes.

I loved all of the colors, even the slightly flaky pink and the purple toned blue. With all of the shades, they were pigmented and applied ever so nicely on! I'd say that if you have access to Sleek, then you'll need this palette.

Vacation Haul Post

I had such an amazing time on vacation in England and France. Three weeks is a long time to be away from home so it is so nice to be back in America. I've got a haul of UK and French skincare and cosmetics and shall post pictures from my vacation in a couple of days once I get not so lazy. I had a lot of fun justifying my purchases by constantly thinking about the savings in shipping had I wanted to purchase them in the US. I also tried to buy things that I didn't have access to in the US.

English cosmetics haul first! I'm glad I took pictures when I bought everything because it means I can use it now and not have to worry about taking pictures.

Overall UK Haul. Sleek, Barry M, Gosh and Mememe. I could buy Sleek online but I would never pay the $13 in shipping that they seem to think is acceptable. If Lush UK used to be able to Royal Mail me things for $8 then Sleek can too.

Overview of English Haul

Sleek Original Palette

Sleek Original Palette

Sleek Storm Palette. The 2nd to last brown in the bottom row is more accurate in this picture than in the overall picture.

Sleek Storm Palette

These MUA eye shadows were one pound each or about $1.62 so you know I jumped on buying them!

MUA Eye Shadow in Shade 11

MUA Eye Shadow Shade 11

MUA Eye Shadow in Shade 12. This is a brown/green duochrome shadow that has been very popular recently.

MUA Eye Shadow Shade 12

MUA Eye Shadow in Shade 20

MUA Eye Shadow Shade 20

Barry M Eye Dust in 100 and 38

Barry M Eye Dust 38 and 100

Mememe Colourama Long Lasting Creme Eyeshadow in Molten Brown and Liquid Bronze

Mememe Colourama in Molten Brown and Liquid Bronze

Gosh Grey Brown Eyeshadow. This is a little more silver toned than it appears in the picture.

Gosh Grey Brown

I practiced more restraint with my English cosmetics than with the things I got in France. I started using the Embryolisse moisturizer immediately and since it is packaged in a metal tube it's all crimped up now. I got 2 huge bottles of Bioderma Crealine and a Kiko Makeup Milano lipstick in 78.

I'm hoping that the Bioderma Crealine lives up to the hype.It was on sale though and I can't get it in the US for cheap.

Overall French haul

Has anyone tried Kiko Makeup Milano before? They had a whole range that was only 2.50 Euros and a more expensive range with a large variety of cosmetics. I haven't heard of the brand so I only picked up a nude lipstick.

Kiko Lipstick in 78

I'm so glad I'm back in the US but I do miss French dairy. Oh the milk, sorry to say that American milk tastes like sock in comparison :(

Do you guys have any overseas (whether you're traveling from the US or from another country) favorites that you stock up on?

I'm Back from Vacation!

I had planned on posting earlier and had lots of ideas but my camera is being used by my sister so I can't upload all of the pictures from my vacation or take pictures of what I got from my trip quite yet.

I did have an amazing time in England with my brother and France with the rest of my family. Most of my family members live in France and I haven't seen them in YEARS so it was great to spend over a week there.

Until I have something more substantial to post about, here's a photo of me at Stonehenge!