REVIEW: M.A.C x Nicki Minaj Lipsticks in Nicki’s Nude & The Pinkprint

Since her debut, Nicki Minaj had never failed to generate buzz with her outlandish dress sense. But most recently, she has ditched her neon and over-the-top aesthetics in favour of a more natural and sophisticated look and cleverly translated her newfound (understated) style into business opportunities. Not long after the announcement of her upcoming collaboration with H&M, the “Rake It Up” rapper is in the spotlight again for scoring yet another endorsement deal. This time, it’s from M∙A∙C.

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj 2017

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj 2017

The M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj collection boasts a wide array of nude lipsticks and lipglasses – mostly repromotes and in regular packaging – including two nude lipsticks she had custom-designed for M·A·C. What’s more, we makeup fanatics in Singapore got to shop the collection two weeks before it officially hits stores in the U.S. 😍 Our prayers have been answered at last – no more lagging behind the rest of the world in getting first dibs on new M∙A∙C collections!

This was actually the fourth time Nicki Minaj had team up with M∙A∙C. In 2010, she worked with the brand to create a special edition Pink 4 Friday lipstick, and then in 2012 and 2013 on the Viva Glam line which saw the release of two limited-edition funky-coloured lipsticks in the name of supporting the M∙A∙C AIDS Fund. Hence, even if you’re not into pop music, this multi-talented American rapper-singer-songwriter shouldn’t be at all stranger to you.

If you haven’t had the chance to access the latest collection, fret not for I’ve got scoops to share! Once again, a big thank you to M∙A∙C Singapore for allowing me to preview the collection before it was made available to the public on 7 September 2017.

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj 2017 - the display

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj 2017 – the display

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - all Lipsticks and Lipglasses in this collection

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – all Lipsticks and Lipglasses in this collection

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipsticks (regular packaging)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipsticks (regular packaging)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipstick swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipstick swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipstick swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipstick swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipglass

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipglass

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipglass swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipglass swatches

Last but not least, the two #NickiNudes that sold out in the U.K. in less than 7 hours…

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Nicki's Nude and The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Nicki’s Nude and The Pinkprint

Created by Nicki Minaj, Nicki’s Nude and The Pinkprint are the only shades from this collection to have differentiated packaging conferred upon them. They are presented in corresponding-coloured tube endorsed by the rapper herself (to give them a more personal touch) and tucked into a box of the same colour. Naturally as a packaging junkie, I was drawn towards them despite having had my eyes set on Derriere and A Girl’s Got Needs. I’m sure this was the case in the U.K. as well 😅

#1 Nicki’s Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude (US$17.50 / S$33)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude (US$17.50 / S$33)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude (bottom: when lipstick is freshly applied to the lips vs once it wears off)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude (bottom: when lipstick is freshly applied to the lips vs once it wears off)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude

Nicki’s Nude is a pinked beige described as a soft corally pink with Amplified finish. This highly-wearable shade complements most skin tones. It goes on sheer but is buildable to medium coverage and is hydrating and emollient with a hint of sheen to give the face a healthy glow.

Although the application is smooth, it lends an uneven consistency to the lips especially around drier areas (unfortunately my lips were exceptionally parched when I wore this due to heatiness) and settles into the lines so it was impossible to achieve uniformity with this lipstick. The chalky and transfer-prone texture also renders it short-lived on the lips. Once the product wears off, it leaves obvious streaks all over the lips as shown in the animated lip swatch above.

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude - swatch comparison

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude – swatch comparison

#2 The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint (US$17.50 / S$33)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint (US$17.50 / S$33)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint (bottom: when lipstick is freshly applied to the lips vs once it wears off)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint (bottom: when lipstick is freshly applied to the lips vs once it wears off)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

Named after Nicki Minaj’s third studio album, The Pinkprint is a bright cool pink which is described by M∙A∙C as a midtone creamy pink with Amplified finish. It glides on buttery and moist with a generous dose of sheen to exude an impish glamour à la Her Minajesty (what Minaj refers to herself as). In addition, it feels balmy and emollient and gives a moderately opaque payoff but with very limited buildability. However, it isn’t very long-lasting and has the same issue of leaving powdery streaks once it wears off.

And uh… is it just me or does this shade remind you of one of her many pink latex outfits?

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint - swatch comparison

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint – swatch comparison

On the whole, the limited-edition lipsticks are alright and nothing exceptional. If not for their packaging and the fact that this collection will be discontinued from 19 October, I wouldn’t have bought them for sure. A big part of me had hoped that Nicki had designed something else from the accompanying 18 lipsticks because I’m personally not very fond of pink hues. But if I have to choose between Nicki’s Nude and The Pinkprint, I’d pick the former because The Pinkprint is too pale for my liking (even though, admittedly, it applies slightly better).

On a side note, the star seems to have bigger plans up her sleeves and these lipsticks barely scratch the surface of what she has in store for us. Just last month, she had teased on her Instagram account that she is currently working on a “first of its kind partnership” with the brand that is slated for release next year. I may not be a fan of her music but collaborations with M∙A∙C always gets my attention. So until she spills the beans (which I’m quite positive is pretty soon), I am definitely keeping a close eye on further updates about this secret project! Could she be introducing a more extensive range of pink lipsticks?

What are your thoughts about this and her upcoming collection? Let me know in the comments below, or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

M.A.C × Nicki Minaj is now available islandwide and M.A.C (UK). It will be launched on MACCosmetics.com on 21 September 2017.
MAKE-UP USED: [EYES] Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat Tenant Eyeshadow Palette / Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Deep End & Mars / Clinique Pretty Easy Liquid Eyelining Pen [BROWS] Sigma Brow Powder Duo in Medium [FACE] shu uemura Petal Skin Fluid Foundation 764 / Benefit Hoola Quickie Contour Stick / Benefit Rockateur / Benefit Girl Meets Pearl Luminizer

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REVIEW: LORAC Cosmetics x Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipsticks – Belle-ieve, True Beauty, Savoir Faire, Red Rose & Tres Chic

Hello everyone!

These days, it is imperative to set aside some money for rainy days. And by rainy days, I mean days when makeup companies drop new products unannounced.

So.. LORAC Cosmetics recently sprang a surprise on unknowing beauty community with the launch of their Beauty and the Beast capsule line which included a limited-edition eye shadow palette, cheek palette, lip gloss collection, and lipstick collection. Since this collection didn’t serve primarily as a build-up to the premiere of the movie (or directly capitalise on its popularity since this was release in June, more than 2 months after it completed its run in major theatres), I supposed no one had expected this collaboration to happen.

Fortunately, I was lurking around the internet when the news got out so I managed to snag some stuff before the rest of the world did. No prize for guessing what I bought😂

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection (US$36)

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection (US$36)

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection

This Beauty and The Beast lipstick collection features 5 brand new moderate-coverage MOD Cream shades that are inspired by the Disney classic, right down to their names. Vanilla-scented and decked out in clear plastic with gold-foiled rose detailing and a metallic gold body where the movie title is imprinted on, these lipsticks are cleverly and luxuriously packaged to fondly remind one of the iconic yellow gown Belle wore in the film while taking away the “cheap” look.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection swatches

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection swatches

The lipsticks are neatly arranged in a vacuum-formed plastic tray and then packed into a paper box. Each set is priced at US$36 (domestic shipping is free), which breaks down to a cost of less than S$10 per lipstick. WOW! I am sure no one expected it to be this affordable especially with the Disney logo plastered on every lipstick (which gives most sellers the excuse to jack up their prices). But I can’t help feeling sceptical about the quality 🤔

#1 Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

Belle-ieve is a warm mauve with a hint of pink undertones and a satin finish. It has the right amount of slip to allow for a smooth and even application across the lips without skipping or tugging. Highly pigmented, it delivers a one-swipe intense colour and an opaque payoff with an added sheen of moisture. It has such thick mousse-like consistency that it actually sits atop the lips nicely and conceals most of its flaws rather perfectly at the same time.

The lipstick also lends a slightly tacky sensation but that can easily be eliminated (while still maintaining the intensity) by dabbing the excess oil onto a facial tissue. Doing that would also extend its wear time. On days I don’t stuff my face with food, it could last about 5 hours on me so its longevity is not an issue. What really bothers me, however, is malleability of the bullet. It seems really prone to melting and has already slanted quite a bit after a few uses even though I usually keep my lipsticks away from the sunlight. I’m not sure if this is an isolated problem but do be careful not to exert too much pressure on the first use just in case.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve – swatch comparison

#2 True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

True Beauty is a cool pale pink with fine gold shimmers infused into it which imparts a subtle frosty sheen. This smooth lipstick glides on like butter and eventually lends a glossy finish which offers some plumping effect. It applies sheer at first, but is buildable to a medium coverage. That said, it settles noticeably into the lines and ends up streakier with each coat. It, too, leaves a tacky sensation on the lips which likewise can be removed. Due to its exceptionally soft and creamy consistency, it tends to ball up upon application and roughen the look as shown in the above lip swatch. Hence, I would suggest using a lip brush to apply this lipstick for better control of the texture.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty – swatch comparison

#3 Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

Savoir Faire is a peachy coral with a satin finish that applies effortlessly to deliver full coverage and colour intensity. This universally-flattering shade casts a radiantly youthful glow and instantly brightens up even the dullest of faces. It has a creamy and nourishing texture topped with a lustrous sheen to soften the lines and lend a glossy appearance to the lips. If wet lips aren’t your thing, simply blot the excess moisture away gently for a matter look and a longer-lasting wear. I have nothing much to rant about this shade. Needless to say, this is definitely one of my favourites from this collection!

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire – swatch comparison

#4 Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

Red Rose is a cool-toned red with a satin finish. It applies like a dream and offers insanely-pigmented colour in full opacity in a single stroke. Ultra moisturising, this lipstick is formulated to provide uniform colour coverage and high-shine to add luster and volume to the lips without settling into the lines so they (even for the thin ones) look absolutely juicy and fuller. It has the same tackiness as the other lipsticks in this collection and is certainly not transfer-proof. But it is comfortable enough for you to keep wanting to reapply the product.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose – swatch comparison

#5 Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

Très Chic is a cool brown with the shine and softness of a satin but the tug and pull of a matte during application. It goes on thick and balmy to deliver a light wash of colour and mostly-sheer colour payoff which needs to be layered to achieve reasonable opacity. It applies patchy and the uneven consistency accentuates any imperfections on the lips so exfoliation is a must beforehand. Although this shade feels the driest among the lipsticks in this bundle, it has the best staying power as it clings onto the lips all day without weighing them down.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic – swatch comparison

All in all, these lipsticks (my first from LORAC!), save for a few shortfalls, have earned a spot in my regular makeup roster. The creamy and soft bullets are highly susceptible to melting so you have to ensure that the lipsticks are kept in cool environment (especially in humid countries like Singapore) or they will break or dislodge easily. But of course, if that happens you can always employ the melt-and-freeze trick to repair it. Every application renders a thick and rich consistency because more product is dispensed each time although this also translates to lesser uses. Nonetheless, this lipstick bundle is a very worthy purchase because the quality is really up there for the price you pay. I would definitely recommend this to anyone in a heartbeat!

What are your thoughts about these LORAC MOD lipsticks? Let me know in the comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

LORAC × Disney Beauty and the Beast was available on LORACCosmetics.com.

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REVIEW: M.A.C x Steve J & Yoni P Lipsticks in Spotlight Me & A Killing Smile

Hello everyone!

Husband-and-wife design duo Steve Jung and Yoni Pai are not only a household name for their contemporary casual pieces in South Korea, but are also widely known among western fashion cognoscenti since having their creations stocked at major retailers such as Selfridges, Nordstrom and NET-A-PORTER. Following their inception in 2007 with their label Steve J & Yoni P (or SJYP), the London-based designers have dominated runways of late and had even collaborated with Topshop on a capsule collection in 2011. They were further catapulted into prominence when Lee Hyo-ri and Jang Keun-suk (among many of their high-profile clients) as well as Hollywood celebrities Rita Ora and Olivia Palermo were spotted wearing the brand on a few occasions.

With such an influence, it came as no surprise that M·A·C (a longtime sponsor of the makeup for Steve J and Yoni P’s shows during Seoul Fashion week) would sought to tap into their creativity and fashion prowess to release a collection “as cheeky and progressive” as their style for summer!

Steve J & Yoni P for M·A·C 2017

Steve J & Yoni P for M·A·C 2017

Launched in June 2017, the M.A.C × Steve J & Yoni P collection comprises 4 lipsticks (Spotlight Me / Candy Yum Yum / A Killing Smile / Yoni Crush), Lip & Cheek X 6 (Yoni Attraction), Eye Shadow X 2 (Touch Me Baby), Dazzleshadow X 2 (Midnight Fever), Powder Blush (Peony Petal), brushes (159SH Duo Fibre & 217SH Blending), a makeup bag and Studio Eye Gloss (Pearl Varnish). The packaging design drew inspiration from Yoni P’s signature look of blonde hair and thick, black eyeliner while other graphics of the components “speak articulately to the existing street style in Seoul”. This campaign was supposed to be a joint effort with a two-person team but I don’t know, it appears to be more centered around one 🤔

Cheeky and quirky packaging

Cheeky and quirky packaging

I’m personally not really a fan of the packaging (oops!) because I find the artistic direction to be too.. haphazard? The exaggerated facial features created with simple lines seem thoughtless and just don’t appeal to me. Furthermore, the packaging reminds me of that of Yazbukey for shu uemura, but quirkier. What do you think?

#1 Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me (US$17.50 / S$36)

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me (US$17.50 / S$36)

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

Spotlight Me is a warm peach and described by M·A·C as a light peachy nude with Amplified finish. It has a balmy consistency which gives it plenty of slip and a soft, creamy texture. Furthermore, it offers a buildable-to-opaque coverage with a hydrating shine. However, it leaves a tacky and waxy sensation and has the tendency to settle into the lines of the lips. This lipstick is lightweight and not transfer-proof so frequent reapplication is expected throughout the wear.

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me - swatch comparison

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me – swatch comparison

#2 A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile (US$17.50 / S$36)

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile (US$17.50 / S$36)

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

A Killing Smile is described as a bright pinkish red with Matte finish. This formula applies smoothly with no tug to lend a lip-hugging and opaque coat of cool raspberry pink, complete with a semi-matte appearance and a soft shine. It has a thick texture and an even and mostly opaque consistency, which can still be built upon for greater intensity. Like most M·A·C mattes, this shade is slightly drying but not to the extent of absorbing all the moisture from the lips and leaving them looking uncomfortably parched and cracked. It may not have the extreme longevity of M·A·C’s older mattes, but this still lasted on me for at least 4 hours.

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile - swatch comparison

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile – swatch comparison

Admittedly, despite the Asian-friendly colours and this collection being borne out of a partnership with Asian designers, I am just not feeling all of this. I had even hesitated on getting these lipsticks (hence the delay in this review) due to the limited range of shades that look vastly similar to many of my M·A·C lipsticks.

The unexciting and repetitive choice of colours meant that they are not intended to be statement pieces but collector’s items. M·A·C knows very well that die-hard fans of the brand and K-pop would try to snag a piece regardless of the products (and price) so long as they are adorned in limited-edition packaging – and I am a living example of how their effective marketing can convince customers into buying things they don’t need 😖

Having said that, this collection does offer a narrowed-down selection of lipstick shades that will certainly go well with most fair and medium skin-toned Asians if you don’t already own any of them. Furthermore, these are priced the same as regular-packaged lipsticks (yes, gone are the days of US$16-17 M·A·C lipsticks – prices are creeping up without us realising!)

So, what are your favourite products from this collection? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below or take a poll!

Thanks for reading!

M.A.C × Steve J & Yoni P collection is now available on MACCosmetics.com and M.A.C Bugis Junction, ION, NEX, Ngee Ann City and TANGS at Tang Plaza.

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[BOOK REVIEW + GIVEAWAY] Great Lengths: Singapore’s Swimming Pools

I am giving away 3 copies of ‘Great Lengths’!
Scroll down to the end of this post for more details 😚

We might have clinched several gold medals on the international stage for badminton and table tennis. But in all honesty, no other sport unites Singapore and evokes the pride in us like swimming does (even a relatively non-sporty person like myself gets a rush of adrenaline watching our national swimmers competing at the Games!). According to this list of Singapore’s sporting achievements, swimming has apparently brought back the most medals to date, including the elusive gold from the 2016 Summer Olympics. That said, the true reason for our enthusiasm towards the sport lies beyond these materialistic pleasures.

With tropical waters surrounding us and at least one swimming complex in almost every neighbourhood, water sports come as naturally to us as breathing, so it is not surprising for Singaporeans to have a deep affinity for all things water. The abundance of pools here means every Singaporean gets to swim recreationally, whether it be taking a dip or dive. Although unable to swim, countless family outings to swimming pools – or more specifically Jurong East Swimming Complex, which opened in March 2000 – in my primary school days inevitably forms a significant part of my childhood memory. Given our strong sense of attachment to our pools, Singaporean editors Jocelyn Lau and Lucien Low found it peculiar that there wasn’t any book about them and had therefore embarked on a year-long project to document our swimming pools – past and present. Their research resulted to the publication of 50 Metres in 2015. However, because it was more of a purpose-driven project (to commemorate SG50), 50 Metres wasn’t sold commercially and had limited circulation. Still, those who had seen the full-colour illustrated book had nothing but praises for it.

Upon seeing its potential, the editors decided to update the book with photographs and interviews with some of our renowned aquatic athletes. Award-winning heritage blogger Jerome Lim as well as former competitive swimmer Ang Peng Siong were also given a voice in the book to provide further insight into Singapore’s swimming pools. All these efforts contributed to the second edition of 50 Metres, retitled Great Lengths.

Book: Great Lengths, Singapore's Swimming Pools

Book: Great Lengths, Singapore’s Swimming Pools

Book: Great Lengths, Singapore's Swimming Pools

Book: Great Lengths, Singapore’s Swimming Pools

Book: Great Lengths, Singapore's Swimming Pools

Book: Great Lengths, Singapore’s Swimming Pools

Book: Great Lengths, Singapore's Swimming Pools

Book: Great Lengths, Singapore’s Swimming Pools

To the uninformed, our pools may just be another place for recreation. In actual fact, they have a weight of history behind them and hold a special place in the heart of many Singaporeans. Great Lengths uncovers just how much was unknown about the swimming pools here.

Swimming For All (p. 46)

Swimming For All (p. 46)

Besides providing opportunities for local budding swimmers to hone their skills, the great accessibility to pools had also set the scene for some of their most remarkable achievements. For instance, two-time Olympian (1984 and 1988) and Asian Games gold medalist (1982) Ang Peng Siong was once hailed as the World’s Fastest Swimmer in the 50-metre freestyle event with a timing of 22.69s in 1982. This probably wouldn’t have been possible without his father’s foresight and rigorous swimming practices at the now-privatised Farrer Park Swimming Complex. This book also features other outstanding swimmers who have represented Singapore at major sporting meets and bagged awards. You can expect read about Amanda Lim (who just won the 50-metre freestyle for the fifth consecutive year at the recent SEA Games), Theresa Goh (who was recently inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame) and Yip Pin Xiu among many others.

Pasir Ris Swimming Complex (p. 156)

Pasir Ris Swimming Complex (p. 156)

More recently, Joseph Schooling brought glory to Singapore with his stellar performance at the Rio games. Not only had he put this little red dot on the map with a new Olympic record of 50.39s for the 100m butterfly (and defeating the swimming legend Michael Phelps while at it), public interest in swimming grew dramatically and hit all-time high since the first community pools opened to the local sports-deprived residents in the early to mid-nineties. Looking for a place to swim? Great Lengths doubles as a complete directory (with address, and entry fees on p. 188-189) for all public pools to save you the hassle of Googling.

Contents page where you can find the names of all public pools + free bookmarks!

However, all good things must come to an end. As newer and better-equipped swimming complexes sprout up at every corner in Singapore, many once-popular neighbourhood pools with the most basic amenities are now a shadow of their former selves. While some survive as private entities, few such as the Buona Vista and Paya Lebar swimming complexes weren’t that lucky and had to be closed for future development. In this thoroughly-documented book, you get to learn more about the forgotten “pioneer” pools through old photographs and interviews with people who once swam in their blue glistening waters. It is fascinating to note that the first public swimming pool in Singapore (Mount Emily Swimming Complex) was actually converted from a service reservoir!

One of the 'pioneers' - Geylang East Swimming Complex. Opened in 1978 and is STILL in operation today! (p. 89)

One of the ‘pioneers’ – Geylang East Swimming Complex. Opened in 1978 and is STILL in operation today! (p. 89)

I would divulge more from the book but I don’t wish to spoil the suspense. You’d be surprise to find a wealth of information about the swimming pools in Singapore despite our size! If you’re keen to know more, be sure to grab a copy of Great Lengths (see below for price and availability) or… take part in my giveaway!

That’s right – I am giving away a copy of Great Lengths to THREE lucky readers 😙

★ ★ ★ FACEBOOK GIVEAWAY ★ ★ ★

To participate in this giveaway, all you need to do is complete the following easy steps:

  1. Like me (@fionaseahcom) and Great Lengths (@50metres) on Facebook (we will be checking!)
  2. Comment and tag 2 friends who may also want to win a copy of Great Lengths on this Facebook update

*BONUS*

+1 WINNING CHANCE

…if you share this review or the Facebook update on your Facebook page. Remember to change the privacy mode to public for verification purposes. Do also indicate that you have shared it in the comments so that I can look out for it!

THREE lucky winners will each walk away with a copy of Great Lengths worth S$28+, courtesy of Kucinta Books! 😉 Contest ends 15 September 2017.

T&C #1: ELIGIBILITY

This giveaway is open to everyone currently residing in Singapore only. To enter the giveaway, participants must like @fionaseahcom and @50metres on Facebook, comment and tag two (2) friends on this particular Facebook post. Only entries on Facebook will be considered for this giveaway. Entries submitted after 15 September 2017, 2359 h will be disqualified.

T&C #2: SELECTION & DELIVERY

Winners will be electronically selected and will be notified via e-mail within 3 days of the closing date. All giveaway results are final and prizes are also non-transferable. Winners will be announced on the aforementioned Instagram post as well as on this feature post. Prizes will be delivered by post only and no meetups will be entertained. In the event of unclaimed or unsuccessful prize claims, another draw will be held to determine the next winner.

NOTE

FIONASEAH.COM reserves the right to edit, amend the giveaway Terms and Conditions (T&C #1 and #2) as it deems fit.

★ ★ ★

Thanks for reading and may good luck be with you 😇

BOOK INFORMATION

With a Foreword by Sport Singapore
Introductions by Ang Peng Siong & Jerome Lim

Illustrations by Favian Ee 
Published by Kucinta Books 
Edited by Jocelyn Lau & Lucien Low 
Supported by National Heritage Board

Featured on CHANNEL NEWSASIA “On the Red Dot”, 25 December 2016

* * *

Price: S$28 (excluding GST)
Availability: Kinokuniya, Select Books, NaiiseKucinta Books website.
For loan at: National Library Board branches and at the Sports Hub Library

A sample chapter is available for viewing here.

For more information about the book, please visit Kucinta Books’ website or Great Lengths Facebook page.
THIS FEATURE WAS DONE IN COLLABORATION WITH KUCINTA BOOKS. ALL OPINIONS, AS ALWAYS, ARE GENUINE AND UNINFLUENCED.

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