Review: Too Faced Chocolate Bar eyeshadow palette. Bon appetit!

As a graphic design student, I always knew that what attracts consumers to a product/event/etc. is not only the thing of itself but the total packaging and design. Too Faced is one of the cosmetic brand that always comes up with the cutest packaging. Every time I am in Sephora I am fascinated with the design, shape, and colors of their cosmetics. Their Melted Liquified Longwear Lipstick (which I have in Coral and Violet) are in little paint tubes, feminine typography and golden accents. They have a heart shaped blush and leopard bronzer with gold boxes. Their brushes are called “Teddy Bear” to emphasize the softness similar to animal hair (without testing of animals since Too Faced is a cruelty free brand), and they come in a bag with an oh so adorable  teddy bear zipper…but they took their creativity to whole new level with the Chocolate Bar eyeshadow palette.




I purchased the Urban Decay Naked 3 palette in April, and I absolutely adore the rosy, pinkish shades. So romantic. However, it was time that I needed some more neutrals. I could’ve gotten the Urban Decay Naked 1 palette, which has similar shades but only contains 12 compared to Too Faced Chocolate Bar’s 16 shades. I was just enamored with the exterior looking like a chocolate bar (duh). And lets be honest: the sweet smell makes me want to run out to the store and grab a bar of Lindt or Cadbury. That’s because this baby is made with real cocoa powder, vanillin, fruit powder, etc. (for a detailed list of ingredients, click here)

The 16 shades of the Chocolate Bar palette, with White Chocolate and Champagne  Truffle as the largest (because they would be used for the browbone or as a base for other shades)

The matte shades (no shimmer, just flat finish) from top to bottom: White Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Triple Fudge, Salted Caramel, Semi Sweet, Strawberry

The shimmer shades from top to bottom: Gilded Ganache, Black Forest Truffle, Marzipan, Candied Violet, Amaretto, Hazelnut, Creme Brulee, Haute Chocolate, Cherry Cordial, Champagne Truffle

Pros:
-The packaging was enough to make me more curious, and the scent gives me a big chocolate craving
-There's a variety of mattes and shimmers, different shades of brown (with violet and pink added to neutralize the browns)
-Most shades are pigmented, especially White Chocolate, Gilded Ganache, Triple Fudge, and Cherry Cordial
-You can mix and match shades to wear on a casual day to school or a night out (how's that for a sexy smokey eye?!)

Cons:
-The names of the shades are on a thin plastic sheet that comes with it instead of being printed on the product...so I'm thinking rather than going through the hassle of taking it on and off to distinguish the names, I'll just write it down on the product with a fine tip Sharpie.
-There were other reviews complaining that Candied Violet does not have enough pigment, and unfortunately I'd have to agree. And it's a shame because it has potential to be a beautiful, rich color. However I find that you can wet the brush with water for a more dramatic effect!
-Unlike the Naked Palettes, this comes with no brush, so when you want to bring it to you for travel you have to bring a separate brush (or use the Naked brushes if you have any of them!). But then again that's why the Chocolate Bar is $49 vs $54 for the Naked Palettes.

The cons are minor inconveniences since it didn't stop me from ordering it after daydreaming of it for months. Would I recommend it?! Yes! Especially if you (or a special lady in your life, like a friend, girlfriend, mother, sister) have a sweet tooth. It's quite expensive, but with the packaging, scent, pigments and variety of shades and tints, it can't be beat. Overall, I'm just obsessed with the juxtaposition of makeup and treats.

First I filled in the browbone with White Chocolate. Then I used Milk Chocolate for my lid and added Semi Sweet for the outer lid. For the crease I used Candied Violet and then I lined my lower lash line with Triple Fudge. As far as other makeup, I used: Tarte BB treatment 12-hour primer (Medium), Maybelline Face Studio Master Glaze Blush (Coral Sheen), L'oreal Voluminous Miss Manga Mascara (373 Black), and NYX Butter Gloss (Strawberry Parfait).

Do you have this product? Love it or leave it? Is it something you're interested in? Feel free to comment below!

New name + Review: Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick in Zin

So I guess you would say this is my first official post, and I decided to change the blog name to "Just Hantastic" as a spin based off my name, and because there are some spoonie bloggers and IG users with the names of "chronically_[insert adjective here]" and "fabwithlupus" (who is wonderful). I wanted something original and personal, and while my lupus is a huge part of my life, I don't want to to eat me up inside. I want the many other facets of my life to shine.

Anyway, I'm a lipstick addict. I have about 15 so far (which is minuscule compared to the other makeup junkies in the 50+ club, but someday I'll reach there!) and there are 3 things I look for in a lipstick: Does it last long throughout the day? Does it hydrate (or at least not dry out) my lips? How much color/pigmentation is in it?

I'm always on the lookout for a hydrating lipstick that lasts long, since I suffer from chronically dry lips. So when I went to Sephora last month and asked one of the employees to help me find a lipstick that meets my needs, and she referred me to Bite Beauty. 

Bite Beauty is a lip company based in Toronto that is currently available in Sephora stores (including the ones in JC Penny). They use all natural and organic ingredients, some of which are edible. They sell lipsticks, lip liners, glosses, and the agave lip masks (which is also what the employee recommended for my dry lips, and I also bought it). 

I bought a BB lipstick before (in Tawny) but she recommended the Luminous Creme Lipsticks. I tested out Shiraz, which I really loved but was sold out. Then I kept testing until I found Zin. The berry red worked perfectly with my medium skin tone.


Zin it's true shade under the light


Zin on my lips.

I have mixed feelings about this product.

Pros:
-Super moisturizing! No flaky skin here, especially when I put the Bite lip agave mask beforehand.
-I love berry red shades, and this one is subtle enough to where I can use it on casual days but want a pop of color without being too obnoxious.
-It has a creamy, glossy finish
-The Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick contains resveratrol (same antioxidant in red wine) which has anti aging properties and fights free radicals.

Cons:
-Fairly pricy at $24 a pop.
-Does not last that long. It fades fast, and I noticed that when I drink from my water bottle, the color transfers. So that means I have to constantly reapply.

Would I recommend? Maybe, if you have the money for it. The colors are beautiful and subtle with a sheer-medium coverage, and you can't deny the moisturizing benefits and the organic ingredients prevalent. I love the shade but I probably won't buy again since I lack the patience to constantly reapply (for the price that it is, which is expected considered it's a high end brand vs. a drugstore brand)

Overall rating: 3.7 stars

An introduction to yours truly.

My name is Hannah, and I live in Northern California (Sacramento area, specifically, and I was a Bay Area native as a child). I am 24 going on 25, and entering my senior year at Sacramento State University. I will be graduating with a bachelor's degree in graphic design by Spring 2015. I have 2 forms of lupus (SLE and lupus nephritis) and it has affected my life for the past few years. Though I was diagnosed at the age of 16, I did not experience serious flares until I was 21 years old. These past few years have been a roller coaster. I've had hospital visits, monthly doctor's appointments and lab work, seizures (which result in a 6 month driving suspension), body image battles (thanks to prednisone), joint pain, a kidney biopsy and persisting high fevers all of October 2013. I took a semester off from college Spring 2012. It was a time of rest and getting some speech back after my first mini-stroke and seizure in December 2011. In addition, my dad passed away on February 7, 2013 from battling stage 4 lung cancer for 2 years. I miss him everyday.

These days, my lupus is under control physically, but it still has a hold on me mentally and emotionally. As of now, I am on 15 mg of prednisone (down from 80 mg in November 2013 due to those high fevers!) and holding on to that sliver of hope that I will taper it down and never have to take it again. I am currently not driving because I had 2 seizures this year. Not being able to drive has completely affected me emotionally, tested my patience, and made me question my independence and well being.

That doesn't mean I'm not thankful though! I acknowledge that my medical condition has been a breeze compared to other fellow spoonies. I do however, frequently ask myself, "Can I still live a full, beautiful life despite lupus?" I am thankful for God, my family, my friends, my boyfriend, my 2 dogs, being in a comfortable home, being able to still pursue school in a major I love despite the setbacks, etc.

I have always had an affinity of fashion and beauty. I may not be an expert on everything, but I am learning along the way and I want to share that love to whoever reads this blog. I want other people to know that despite what they're going through physically and emotionally, there is a way to feel beautiful inside and out. You are beautiful and fab no matter what chronic illness throws at you! And your life doesn't have to end because of it.

I also love to write. I have many abandoned blogs, and was also a part of the student newspaper my senior year in high school and my first year at community college (where I met my boyfriend of 5 and a half years! He was also involved in his high school newspaper his senior year). During that time, it when I realized that while I love to write, journalism and reporting wasn't for me. But design was something I always enjoyed. I had fun laying out headlines, photos, body text and captions on InDesign. This blog will be my way to get back into writing.

In this blog, I will be posting:

-Beauty reviews/tips
-Makeup/fashion hauls
-Seasonal looks
-Easy beauty/fashion routines for students
-My stories and experiences coping with lupus
-Some fitness stuff
-Some of my graphic design work (along with a bit of art and photography)
-Encouragement and inspiration for those who are struggling with chronic illness, mental illness, etc.
-Self care/health/wellness tips
-and more!

So I guess you can say this is a lifestyle blog with a little twist... (and even if I sorta call it a lifestyle blog, bear with me, my life is nothing like all like the other bloggers you see on Pinterest or Popsugar) I want to inspire and encourage others, and also myself. I want to get out of this funk I've been feeling, and I want to encourage myself to be the best I can be despite the struggle of chronic illness. But whether you have a chronic illness or not, sit back and enjoy. Feel free to laugh, cry, and think. Let's all be wonderful and fab...chronically fab!