Friday, June 19, 2015

TKB Trading and Silk Naturals Review

With all of DIY that I've been doing, I thought that I'd share my shopping experience and some of the products that I purchased recently from two different companies.

I first learned about TKB Trading years ago when I was into soap making. At that time, I had resources here locally so I ended up not doing any ordering from them. The popularity of soap making here has dropped dramatically and there are almost no resources but unfortunately, I am also not into making soap any more. 

I mainly ended up at the TKB website because I wanted to buy pans. That's when I discovered that they have a nice selection of micas and pigments to make a variety of different makeup items. I did two or three hauls within a 2 week period and this is most of what I ended up with:

I decided to start off with getting the press packs instead of just the tins. The press pack comes with two pressing tiles, a tamping tool (a pressing tile with a handle) and 9 pans. Just as a side note, the pans that TKB sells are made a tin and not aluminum. Be aware that tin will rust if there is prolonged exposure to water. Tin is magnet responsive and sticks very well. Aluminum pans will not rust but are not magnet responsive so you will need to stick a magnet onto the bottom of the pan. TKB does not sell aluminum pans. 

I bought the 57mm Round Press Pack, 44mm Round Press Pack, 26mm Round Press Pack and 24 x 21mm Rectangle Press Pack. The 57mm is quite large and I have no idea what I'll do with them. Maybe if I ever get into doing pressed powder or pressed powder foundation, I'll use that pan. The 44mm round pan is the perfect size for pressing blush into. I think that the 26mm pan is that one size that we pretty much consider standard as it is the same pan size as MAC pans. The 24 x 21mm rectangle pan is slightly smaller than the 26mm round and I totally love them! I actually prefer rectangle or square over round, even with my storage containers. Rectangle or square fit into refrigerators and cabinets so nicely whereas I feel that round containers waste some space.

I felt that while I was sure that I could find properly-sized round items to press with (like a quarter for the 26mm pan), the rectangular one would present a little more difficulty. For this reason, I decided to just buy press packs for all of the sizes this first time around. I have since ordered a 100 pack of the 24 x 21mm pans.

I could not find fractionated coconut oil locally so I had to place an order for it. It's an emollient oil which is also edible. It has many cosmetic uses but the main reason I bought it is to use it as a binder. It is non-greasy, colorless, odorless and tasteless. It is also anti-bacterial, which means the shelf life is forever. One great tip that I learned from youtuber/blogger Beauty Newbie is to make a mixture of alcohol and fractionated coconut oil in a spray bottle. We all have eyeshadows and blushes that kick up a lot of product and leave a powdery mess in the palettes. You can spray this mixture on and let it dry. It helps to tone down how powdery the product is.

Now for the micas...they are packed into ziplock bags. You can purchase sample size, which is approximately 6 grams all the way up to 1 pound! I purchased several in the 1 ounce size for only $4.00 each. I was surprised by how much mica there is! I think that I may be set for life! I did purchase a couple of the sample bags at $1.50 each and they are more than sufficient too. I think that you can get at least 2 26mm pans. Such a bargain! The product is a space saver being in the ziplock bags but it can get messy.

One of the colors that I bought, Davy's Gray is beautifully pigmented. I decided that I wanted to use it to make a couple of lighter colors to get a gradient eye effect.

Davy's Gray is in the top row, last pan on the right. The 2nd and 3rd pans are also Davy's Gray but mixed with Satin Pearl to make a light shade and a medium shade. The whole top row and the last pan on the bottom row are all TKB micas. This EOTD was done using all of the colors on the top row.

Great pigmentation and they blend well.

TKB's service was exceptional! I received my orders within a week of placing it. I even asked them questions via their "contact me" page and they were very helpful. I will definitely be ordering from them again soon!

I ended up discovering Silk Naturals because I had hit pan on my MAC Seedy Pearl eyeshadow. When I went to purchase another one, I discovered that it was discontinued! Thus began my online search for a dupe and this search led me to Silk Naturals. They have a wide array of beautiful ready-made colors! There are also many dupes to popular brands such as MAC and Urban Decay. The eyeshadows that I purchased were $4.50 for 3/4 tsp, packed in a 5 gram sifter jar. The blush that I purchased were $6.50 for approximately 1 1/2 tsp. packed in a 10 gram sifter jar. For every purchase over $10.00, you get a free eyeshadow packed into a 3 gram sifter jar. 

The site provides more indepth information about the colors that you are looking at, such as color family, finish, opacity, shimmer scale, etc. This is good information to know because pressing matte colors are difficult. I'm going to have to try my hand at it one of these days but from all that I've read, it can be hit or miss.

To press eyeshadow into either the 24 x 21mm pan or 26mm pan, it will require close to 2 containers of eyeshadow. To press the blush into the 44mm round pans, it will also require 2 containers of blush. Definitely more pricey than TKB but very much well worth it. I purchased 3 containers of Flirt Blush and used 2 and part of the 3 container to press. I purchased only one container of Be Mine blush and was too anxious to order more before pressing so I pressed only that one container. 

Wouldn't you know turns out to be my absolute favorite color! I have to purchase more so that I can press another pan and have it be a full pan.

Be Mine is described as a pinky rose color with a neutral tone. 

I received excellent service from Silk Naturals as well. Again, my purchase was received within a week of placing the order. I will definitely be ordering from them again. It's so difficult to decide which colors to buy!

I have several of the free mini eyeshadows from my purchases and someone gave me some. I want to press them so I think that I'll have to purchase the 15mm mini round pans from TKB. 

I have Barry M products and have heard of Shio Cosmetics and Fryrinnae. Fryrinnae is not pigments but loose eyeshadows. Has anyone had experience pressing these and can give me tips? I'm looking into possibly purchasing from them. Any other recommendations sources to purchase micas, loose eyeshadows or pigments to press? I'm totally hooked!