Profusion Holiday 2013 Palettes: Twinkle Twinkle & Angelic Eyes Review + Swatches

Phew! What a mouthful with that title, huh? I go through weird phases of being a total makeup snob wanting only to focus on my mid-range/higher end makeup, then obsessing over inexpensive drugstore makeup (read: every Wet n Wild new release).

One brand I'd always steered clear of was Profusion Cosmetics. I assumed the quality to be questionable because it's sold at Dollar Tree alongside L.A. Colors, which is like p-u-r-e chalk to me. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE Dollar Tree and always check out the beauty aisle, but I'd drawn the imaginary line at chalk.

The Profusion Holiday 2013 palettes I picked up at Walgreens after reading this post on Nouveau Cheap, however, are totally not like that. I was pleasantly surprised and thought I'd share swatches in case you'd like to pick them up before they're gone.

Profusion Twinkle Twinkle 5 Color Eyeshadow Palette 01 Twinkle Twinkle 5 Color Eyeshadow Palette in 01
$1.00 | 8 grams
Available at Walgreens

Twinkle Twinkle 01 is a new all-shimmer, purple hued palette. The eyeshadows are quite opaque for $1 makeup, and primer helps bring out the colors even more. The texture is surprisingly soft to the touch without being flaky, dry, or chalky, which was my biggest fear (save for the white). The standout shade is the duochrome lilac-mauve. It's difficult to show the greenish-grey shifts in color but I promise they're there! The black is nicely pigmented but it stains, which may or may not be a bad thing depending on your preference.

Bottom Line: Definitely a must-have if you enjoy purple eyeshadow and have an extra dollar to spare! It's also a nice alternative to Wet n Wild's Petal Pusher.

Profusion Twinkle Twinkle 5 Color Eyeshadow Palette 02 Twinkle Twinkle 5 Color Eyeshadow Palette in 02
$1.00 | 8 grams
Available at Walgreens

Twinkle Twinkle 02 is a new all-shimmer, neutral-toned palette. Its quality is typical for $1 makeup, but primer does bring out the colors. The champagne shade is sheer and crumbly, as is the middle brown. The remaining shadows are soft to the touch and ever-so-slightly more pigmented. The standout color is also the most disappointing: the cool brown/burgundy with a gold glitter wash on the far right. It's incredibly dry and chalky, blends out to nothing, and has satin finish only if worn over primer.

Bottom Line: I'd recommend skipping need this one, especially if you're like me and already own tons of neutrals. Then again it's $1. Just expect a lot of glittery fallout.

Profusion Twinkle Twinkle 5 Color Eyeshadow Palette 03 Twinkle Twinkle 5 Color Eyeshadow Palette in 03
$1.00 | 8 grams
Available at Walgreens

Twinkle Twinkle 03 is a new all-shimmer, earth-toned palette. It instantly reminded me of Wet n Wild's Comfort Zone. All of the eyeshadows have great pigmentation and soft texture. Primer helps the gold in the middle green shade pop and gives the black something to adhere to as it's pretty crumbly without it. There's no real standout shade here, they're all great. The middle green also reminds me a little of Urban Decay's Mildew.

Bottom Line: Totally worthy of a dig through your couch cushions!

Overall: Some of the shades in the Twinkle Twinkle palettes are SO shimmery I'd say they're borderline frosts. I was very impressed with the performance, even with 02's shortcomings. It's up to you how you want to spend your dollars, but 01 and 03 are definitely winners.

When I picked up the Twinkle Twinkle palettes, I noticed there were quite a few other palettes on display along with all of the holiday bundles at Walgreens. One caught my eye because of its similarity to BH Cosmetics' Galaxy Chic Palette (you can see swatches here on Cait's blog), so of course I figured "why not?"

Profusion Angelic Eyes 10 Baked Shadows Palette Angelic Eyes 10 Baked Shadows Palette (Silver Packaging)
$5.00 | 13 grams
Available at Walgreens

Angelic Eyes is a new colorful baked palette. It has ten beautiful marbled eyeshadows, all of which really shine over primer. They are very hit and miss without it. All are soft to the touch, and two crumbled easily beneath the pressure of my finger alone (photo here). Because they're baked they all have nice color shifts and really remind me of a few Urban Decay eyeshadows.

Bottom Line: It's a nice abbreviated alternative to BH Cosmetics' Galaxy Chic Palette which is normally $22.95 when it's not on sale (but it's never not on sale). Though I'm not in love with the palette, I do enjoy a few shades that I think compare to Urban Decay's Fishnet, Oil Slick, Haight, and Grifter somewhat in color—not quality.

So, what do you guys think? I'm alright with having spent $8 on Profusion Cosmetics, and maybe next time I won't be so quick to pass on the brand. As always, all images are clickable and lead to massive photos on flickr if you want to take a closer look!


Oh, Vanity! Revamping My Makeup Storage

Well, would you look at that. I've finally come back to my ~DIY~ roots! By now you should know that I'm an obsessive planner and sometimes—actually, most times—I get ahead of myself and end up burned out before I've even gotten started. Another problem is, of course, wanting to do it allll.

Sanded Wooden Drawer with Drill

So, in the five whole minutes that we experienced fall in Chicago, I decided to give the desk I use as my vanity a little bit of a facelift. It was time; my mom bought it for my dorm almost a decade ago! Andrew and I disassembled and lugged it all the way out to the suburbs, then went in on it with spray paint in my in-laws' garage. After lots of legwork (armwork?) sanding and priming first.

Because my makeup collection had begun to overflow from my vanity, it was clearly the perfect time to embark on a project I first mentioned, oh, THREE YEARS AGO. The IKEA Fira mini chests I purchased way back when were intended for a different purpose, and though most were filled with craft supplies, two were completely empty and waiting to be used. It was destined to be!


It's safe to say I completely underestimated how long this entire process would take. I was convinced we'd get the entire vanity painted and reassembled, plus the two chests put together and painted and back in the city in one Sunday. Ha! Keep a look out for part two of this post soon. In the meantime, isn't it awesome what a little spray paint can do? I absolutely love it!


Disastrous Salted Caramel Brownies

First things first, that title is misleading. My first attempt at making brownies from scratch wasn't a total disaster, but the outcome wasn't very pretty either.

Chopped Tsokolate Chocolate for Salted Caramel Brownies

I should have known things were doomed when I pulled out what I thought was parchment paper only to see it was actually wax paper just as my caramel was ready to be poured. Of course! My panicked solution? Asking Andrew to butter a dish while holding the hot saucepan in one hand and my face in the other. Cutting the caramel into perfect little squares after it cooled clearly wasn't going to happen but I was relieved to have (semi) successfully made caramel for wannabe caramel candies.

Salted Caramel on the stove for Salted Caramel Brownies Salted Caramel pieces cooled for Salted Caramel Brownies

Using Smitten Kitchen's Salted Caramel Brownies recipe, I upped the salt content, but only by a pinch or two, to cut some of the inevitable sweetness. Everything would have been fine from here had I employed some common sense; ergo, caramel melts → mini-muffin pans are shallow → don't fill the pan so damn high.

Ingredients for Salted Caramel Brownie Batter Brownie Batter for Salted Caramel Brownies

Each bite had the perfect balance of sticky, salty-sweet caramel and rich, dark chocolate goodness. I mean, they were mouthwatering. I honestly could have eaten the entire batch in one sitting if they weren't headed to my in-laws as Sunday dinner's dessert. I served them warmed and topped with vanilla custard. SO, so good. I will definitely make these brownies again, being sure to forgo the mini-muffin pan. Having all-edge pieces was a delicious result, but I think a square pan is ideal.

Salted Caramel Brownies topped with Vanilla Custard

I debated having an entire post dedicated to these Salted Caramel Brownies but I think it's important to showcase your (my) failures and laugh at yourself (myself). Don't you? Obviously everything I make in my kitchen isn't a masterpiece (I wish!) and some things can be so painfully simple, I'll think "why am I putting so much effort into styling this food right now?" Yet here I am.

Things could have gotten way worse. I could have set off all the smoke detectors from the dripping caramel oozing off of the mini-muffin pan onto the bottom of the oven, the dripping caramel causing the apartment to go up in flames—is that even possible? Or I could have sliced a few fingers off while improperly holding my chef's knife chopping chocolate intended for Tsokolate (Filipino hot chocolate)!

Baked Salted Caramel Brownies

Now I'm thinking I could have gotten away with no one knowing about this, besides Andrew, if it weren't for this post... What's the worst damage you've caused in the kitchen? How did you recover?