Brazen were on my 'to try' list for a while, and while they did not win my little indie brand poll, I decided to ignore your wishes and order from them first because they had a sale on :P
4 3gram Lip gloss pots in La Femme, Make Out, Pixie and Burlesque
Good glitter gone bad in Naughty Gold
Yummy Gummies lip scrub
The beauty guru sample set
Brazen is available on both Etsy and Artfire, but I found out a special sale through their facebook page (4 3 gram pots for $10 ) so I made my order by just emailing my list of wants to them. There was a little delay because they didn't have the ingredients for something I ordered, but it was only a few days and communication was great, I was kept well informed throughout. Sandi, who I spoke with, was really friendly and very helpful. One of the colours of lipgloss I wanted was sold out (it was the limited edition Blaze, which is now back for a small time) but she suggested La Femme, which is in a similar colour family and she had seen from my wishlist on my blog, the fact that she'd taken the time to look seemed really great to me, it showed she really cared about giving me what I would like best. The package was sent on the 4th of march (I got a shipping confirmation email, which I appreciated) and arrived on the 11th of march which is really quick for a parcel from the US (and yes, this should have been written 2 months ago, I know, I suck).
So here's everything I recieved:
Review and swatches under the cut :)
I didn't take a photo of it's packaging because I was too eager to see what was inside! It came in a bubble mailer, and then everything was wrapped in brightly coloured tissue paper sealed with silver 'Brazen' stickers. Very nice! Inside that everything was in zip lock bags and then each of the pots was sealed with shrink wrapped so everything was completely secure, no chance of leackage! the labels on the products are very nice, with silver metallic backgrounds, pink logo and black text. They include the product name and ingredients. Unfortunately I didn't get a nice photo of the pretty stickers because before I could my dog grabbed my package and tried to chew it up! I managed to rescue it before anything was destroyed but the labels ran (unfortunately they are not resistant to doggy saliva :P) and there are some chew marks. Sigh. Worse has happened though, he completely ate my Shiro lip sample :(
So firstly I will talk about the Beauty blogger sample set. For this I paid $3 (usually you just pay the shipping cost, but as I ordered other things as well I had to pay shipping ontop of this. Shipping was only $5 to the UK though, so really reasonable!) and I was just expecting a few samples, instead I got 6 eyeshadow samples, 1 full 3 gram eyeshadow pot, 3 perfume samples and 1 full 3 gram solid perfume pot! I was really surprised by how generous it was!
The perfumes samples I recieved were Girly Girl, Thai One On and Pear-ly Legal. The samples are sent as little butterflies cut out of material which is imbued with the scent. I think this is a clever way to get an idea of the scents, but you can't really tell what they'd be like on the skin. The solid perfume came in a 3 gram pot and the scent was La La Lychee. I'm not going to say much about these because unfortunately I don't like any of the scents. I'm very fussy when it comes to perfumes, so even though Sandi sent me fragrances based on notes I'd said I like (fruity, sweet, tart, girly smells) there aren't any I would wear. They're all just a little too sweet for me, slightly cloying and while I usually love lychee scents there was something very chemical about this one, it had a sort of background smell that reminded me of bathroom cleaner. I did wear it once to test the formula though and it was pretty good. It lasted a few hours before fading away, which is much the same as other solid perfumes I've tried. Scents are such a personal thing that I can't really say these are bad, just that I didn't like them.
The eyeshadows are really fantastic. They are wonderfully buttery smooth, very pigmented and super easy to blend. The colours are also all gorgeous! Some are complex, some are simple but they're all very pretty. I've also found them incredibly long lasting.
Here I am wearing 'Jaded' freshly applied (along with some of the Naughty Gold glitter and Collection 2000 glam crystals glitter eyeliner in Dig It) I wasn't wearing any primer and it wasn't foiled or anything.
And here it is after about 6 hours:
You can see that it has faded very slightly, and there is a tiny amount of creasing where the fold of my eyelid is, but it's barely noticeable at all! It's still incredibly vibrant and pretty much as i applied it!
Here are some swatches of all the colours I recieved. Unfortunately I do not know the name of one, the stupid dog licked the label right away:
Left to right:
Tease, Miss Independent, Tremor, Jaded, Iced, ? , Mayhem, Naughty Gold glitter
Tease, Miss Independent, Tremor, Jaded, Iced
Tremor, Jaded, Iced, ? , Mayhem, Naughty Gold glitter
The photos don't really show some of the colours to their best advantage. Tease has a tiny amount of blue interferance, Tremor has a small amount of purple glitter, ? is a blue/black colour with brighter blue shimmer and Mayhem is an amazing silver with a strong dusky pink duochrome.
Now onto the things I actually paid for :P
I bought a 'Good Glitter Gone Bad' in the colour Naughty Gold. This is a 5 gram pot of very fine black and gold glitter powder. There's not much I can say about this. It's just glitter. But it is very pretty, because the gold is mixed with a much less reflective black glitter it is quite subtle which means you just get a subtle hint of glittery goodness. The swatches are up with the eyeshadow but they didn't really capture how pretty it really is. It cost $5 (now it's $4.99) which is pretty reasonable.
I absolutely adore the lip scrub I bought. It came in a little black tub and was full to the brim. Yes, like most lip scrubs this is just a blend of flavouring, oil and sugar, but who cares? It's AWESOME! It works really well, there's just enough oil in the formula to keep it solid so it doesn't fall out all over the place. It works very well, scrubbing away any little flaky bits of dead skin and leaving my lips with a slight layer of moisturising oil and the delicious flavour. I chosethe flavour 'Yummy Gummies' which is supposed to be like gummy bears. Being vegetarian I haven't had gummy bears in many many years (damn you gelatine!) but i don't remember them tasting like this smells. Perhaps American and English gummis have different flavours? I don't know. But honestly I couldn't care less because the flavour is absolutely wonderful. To me it's like that 'fruit punch' drink you can get in the US, which I absolutely adore. I use this far more often than I need to just because I love the taste so much, and sometimes I just open it up and sniff it because it smells delicious too! It's available in a lot of other flavours too and I'm sure they're all yummy! It cost me $2.79 (now it's $2.99) which is an absolute bargain!
Finally the Lip glosses. I ordered 4 different colours in 3 gram pots but 2 of them actually came in 5 gram pots, so that was a nice surprise! The formula of these is nice, it's sticky so lasts quite a long time, a couple of hours without needing to reapply which is pretty good for a gloss. The problem with it being so sticky is that I don't think the packaging of it in jars is very practical. I have to use a lip brush to apply it and it sort of strings out when I open the lid. I think they'd be a lot handier in little mini gloss tubes, like the Fyrinnae Lip Lustres. They usually cost $5 for a 5 gram jar, which is a fine price. The pigmentation varies from colour to colour so I'll discuss them separately.
Left to right:
La Femme, Burleque, Pixie, Make Out
This isn't a colour I usually go for, it's not bright and brash enough for my usual looks, but it's so so pretty I'm really glad I got it! It's peachy pink colour with a very strong golden duochrome. The colour is quite sheer, but having the gold shimmer so strong it adds a whole new dimension to it. It's the closest I really come to neutral lips, but I really love it. I couldn't discern any flavour or scent with this colour.
This is a wonderful colour, a very blue light purple. It reminds me of lavender. It's beautifully shiney and glossy. I wish it was a bit less sheer. These colours are buildable but if you layer too much on it becomes much too sticky, it strings when you press your lips together. It's still a really lovely colour though! It has a vague candyish scent but it isn't strong.
I have about a million of these colours of gloss and lipstick, I love them! A bright candy pink with a blueish sheen. The swatch shows it very thickly applied. It looks beautiful like that but it's like Pixie and gets really thick and sticky when layered thickly. Sadly again this applies a little sheer with a comfortably thin layer, but it's still pretty. It has the same scent as Pixie.
This gloss is my favourite colour, it's a stunning slightly metallic vibrant red with tiny multicoloured glitter (it doesn't really show up in the photo irritatingly). It's also the most pigmented, being practically opaque in just a thin application. Unfortunately I find this hard to wear because it is quite scented strongly with mint oil. I can cope with the peppermint scent in some lip products like OCC lip tars but this one is too strong for me and burns me slightly. I have very sensitive lips, plumpers that feel like nothing on other people hurt me intensely, so most people will probably have no problem with this. I'm going to try wearing it again because I love the colour so much, but I don't know if I can cope wearing it for a long time :(
Here's a face using Brazen. I am wearing Jaded, Naughty Gold and Burlesque lip gloss lightly applied.
Would I order from Brazen again? Yes, absolutely. I love the lip scrub and glitter, the eyeshadows are really long lasting, buttery smooth and very pretty and the lip glosses, while not perfect, are still really good. The only thing I didn't like were the perfumes and that's just personal preference. Service was great with really friendly, helpful communication and super fast shipping. packaging was great and prices were really reasonable. Really I have no complaints whatsoever! I think this is a really great little indie makeup company and while I won't be buying any makeup in the foreseeable future ( ;__; no money) I would love to buy more stuff from them!