BA Star Natural Eye Shadow Palette – Affordably Fabulous!

I just found an amazing high-end makeup dupe for a fraction of the price! I recently had a chance to try BA Star’s Natural Shadow palette and I have to say it has the same quality and same color payoff as the shadows in my Urban Decay Naked palette!

BAStar Makeup Palette

Comparable to high end eye shadow palettes, the colors in the Natural Shadow palette are extremely versatile and blendable – which gives you access to a variety of shades. It includes three mineral shadows in Bronze, Cocoa, and Nude along with two gel glitters – Gold and Crystal.

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Going for a lighter daytime look here

What I love about this palette is that you can wear the glitter as a standalone eyeliner or shadow – or you can mix it with either the Bronze, Cocoa, and Nude and create a gorgeous custom ultra glam shade of your own! I used an elf brush to apply the shadows because I wasn’t a big fan of the applicator. Nude works as a great highlighter and looks beautiful swept across your lid for a lighter day look. I’m in love with the Bronze shadow because it’s such a pretty warm color – and it very buildable – so you can go darker with this one if you like. Also, Bronze looks amazing as a liner for your lower lash line! Cocoa is the perfect dark shadow for this set, it makes a great smoky eye and works wonderfully as a liner and blended into the corners of your eye.

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Bronze, Cocoa, and Nude

What I love best thought about BA Stars compact eyeshadows is that they go on beautifully – and feel like velvet! I don’t know how they did it, but it feels like a cross between creme and powder shadow. It holds very well to your skin and doesn’t feel heavy at all. They just feel so smooth, look gorgeous, and last for hours – without any primer!

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Gold and Crystal Gel Glitters

BA Star caters to dancers, cheerleaders, and trendsetters – providing top quality products at extremely affordable prices! This palette only runs for $8.75 – and you get a discount if you’re ordering six or more. The BA Star palettes come in Natural Shadow – the one I received  Smoky, Pretty N Pink, and True Blue. Right now, BA Star is offering a discount to readers of The NYC Talon, for a limited time you can use code BBSMOKY to knock 50% off your BA Star Palette order! Check out their online store here or by clicking the image below!

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*I was sent a product sample by BA Star in order to facilitate this review. No compensation was provided. All opinions presented here belong to The NYC Talon and are not influenced in any way.

Iron Chef Our Way: Round 1

So round one is over and, as promised, here is what we all came up with using our secret ingredients:

My older sisters secret ingredient was broccoli and she made Broccoli Feta Bread!

My secret ingredient was strawberries! I was really excited about this one because strawberries are super versatile. However, my dad (one of the two judges) hates fruits (unlike his wife and children, who love them), so I had to find a recipe with something in it for him. So, making sure I had this week in the bag (or my highly competitive nature wanted to make sure all bases were fully covered), I made like three things. Strawberries Almonds and Cream Sweet Bread, Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries Dipped in Chocolate and Rolled in Potato Chips (yes I sooo went there), and Lemon Strawberry Shortcake (for dad) with homemade Lemony Whipped Cream.

Unfortunately, I accidentally deleted my Sweet Bread photo’s- but luckily I pulled the recipe from food.com where there are more photos and you can see how to make it yourself- because it was outrageously good! Just add a little almond extract to the batter like I did. Here’s the link!

My brothers secret ingredient was chips. Now he’s an avid chip connoisseur, I mean if I was a major chip company (like Lays, Doritos, Fritos, or UTZ) I would hire this kid as my mascot. Luckily for him, his metabolism is faster then lightening. But I digress, he made Cheddar Chip Mac ‘n Cheese – a recipe of his own making!

My younger sisters secret ingredient was chicken. Now out of all of us, she’s probably the least cooking inclined. So we were really surprised when she pulled this off- Southwestern Style Chicken Burgers with Cajun Mayo!

So after spending all day slaving working in a hot kitchen. The time to judge had come.While my parents enjoyed everything (as parents do), they let me and my younger sister know that we would be moving on to the next round. Leaving my brother and older sister up for elimination. My older sister ended up being eliminated (you have no idea how funny it sounds to actually write that- it sound so godfatherish), and my brother make it to the next round by the skin of his teeth. Her plate wasn’t as creative as it could have been, and his pasta would have been better had he served it hot and given the cheese enough time to thoroughly melt.

My younger sister and I were both commended for our excellent dishes- and the winner of this round was…ME! Yayyyyy!!! Personally I wouldn’t have minded if my ‘lil sis won because her burger was super flavorful and really really delicious- but, I am happy I won ;)

Did you like anything you saw??? If so, let me know in the comments below and I’ll post the recipe ASAP!

Iron Chef Our Way: Strawberries?

So my family loves watching every competition that Food Network has to offer, Chopped, The Next Food Network Star, and especially Iron Chef America. Just this weekend we decided to do our own version of Food Networks competitive program. With my mom and dad acting as judges, my siblings and I will all battle it out in our own kitchen stadium of sorts. Instead of being assigned one secret ingredient, we all were assigned an individual ingredient which we will create for consumption on every Saturday of the next month (since there are four of us). And every Saturday we’ll get a new ingredient. At the end of the month the winner will be the person with the highest grades. Grading will reflect presentation, taste, and creativity. Personally, I think this is a ruse by my parents to get out of cooking on Saturdays- but I love the idea of having our own showdown, it really encourages cooking, as well as creativity!

As it happens I learned my secret ingredient would be strawberries, which I’m pretty darn excited about! Plus, I figure I have the advantage since my older sis got broccoli, younger sis got chicken, and younger bro got potato chips (his is a little better than his sisters, I think). Anyways, I’m asking for your help to help me figure out what recipe I should make? I want to make something really beautiful, creative, and amazing! I want to win so badly that my sibs will wish they were never born! Mwah-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha! Ahem, we’re not competitive at all ;)

So help a girl out- link up any and all recipes with strawberries that look adventurous, crazy, and most importantly- delicious! And stay tuned, I’ll be sure to update next week with images and recipes- and you can let me know who you think should win!

Update! The results of round one can be found here!