August 18, 2017

[Sponsored] Lens review: GEO Princess Mimi Almond Brown

Hello pretties ~

I hope you're having a good day. ^_^ I thought that today I'd do a review for a really popular circle lens called GEO Princess Mimi Almond Brown (identification number is XMM-204, also known as GEO Bambi Almond or similar names) circle lenses, sponsored by the super awesome circle lens shop called CirclelensesEurope, also known as Cirkellinser. I've done several reviews for them before so, in case you've read any of my previous reviews, you'll know by now that I love and support the shit out of this store! It's so convenient when they're based in Sweden too and are legit good, it makes my life so much easier.

The lenses I'm reviewing in this post were sponsored to me by CirclelensesEurope, aka Cirkellinser. My reviews always consist of 100% my honest opinion, no matter what. I don't ever compromise the truth.

My discount code "SAMURAI" gives you 10% off on any order placed on both CircleLensesEurope and Cirkellinser – feel free to use it! ♥



Base curve: 8.6 mm
Diameter: 14.2 mm
Water content: 40±2%
Life span: 1 year (I recommend 6 months)


Note: To all my Swedish readers, please scroll to the end of this post for a summary in Swedish. // Till alla mina svenska läsare, bläddra gärna till slutet av detta inlägg för en sammanfattning på svenska. :)


Before I chug along to the actual review of the lenses I want to tell you guys a little about CirclelensesEurope, also known as Cirkellinser. You might wonder why I'm mentioning two stores but the catch is that it's actually the same store, just for two different markets – CirclelensesEurope is catering for the whole Europe while Cirkellinser is for the Swedes specifically. Both sites have the same people behind it, the same products for sale, ship from the same place etc so yeah, there's nothing weird there. Neither of them is a copycat or a scam site so you can rest assured and buy from either of them with confidence!

Both of their sites are fresh, inviting, cute and easy to use! There is not a massive amount of circle lenses to choose from since they seem to focus on just a couple well-known lens brands – GEO and EOS, respectively. But what CirclelensesEurope lack in options they make up for with a really fast and affordable shipping – it's a flat price of 3€ for anywhere in Europe. The fast shipping puts CirclelensesEurope at an advantage over Asia-based lens stores for all European customers because yeah, if you're a cosplayer and need lenses urgently (let's say, a week before the con) then now you know what store to head to for your last-minute purchases. ;)

Regarding the shipping and handling time I want to mention that I've generally received my orders really fast – most commonly already on the next working day. Shipping to Sweden is usually 1-2 days and to the rest of Europe it's 3-7 days and it also says on their site that they ship out within 24 hours.

If you wonder to what European countries (note: they do NOT ship outside of Europe!!) they ship to then this is what it says on their site:
We deliver to following countries: Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Switzerland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, United Kingdom and Austria.
Their customer service I have nothing to complain about, it's professional and efficient – they seem to generally answer within 24 hours. Customer service is also really kind and easy to approach and it actually feels like there are caring humans behind the screen. All in all CirclelensesEurope is a very lovely and smooth shop to deal with, safe to buy from and I would recommend them any day to all my fellow European (and Swedish) cosplayers and circle lens fans. Be sure to check them out!


 ~***~ Lens review continues ~***~

The lenses arrived in a small regular white bubblewrap envelope that easily fits into your average mailbox so yeah, you should be able to get your order straight home and not have to pick it up from whatever your closest post center is. The shipping is really speedy, as always, and normally shouldn't take much more than a couple days within Sweden.


Inside the white envelope the lenses are packed in a small adorable drawstring bag – it's the small details that make the experience! With the order also came a free lens case (of course), a fancy business card with a hand-written 'thank you' note on the back, a GEO Medical information sheet (because I received GEO lenses) and, of course, the shop's own leaflet with information about their guarantees, wear & care etc – it's a really good piece of advice for all the first-time contact lens users out there.

~***~

Before wearing any contact lenses I always take them out of their little glass bottles and put them to soak overnight in lens solution – it's not recommended to wear lenses straight out of the vials, in case you didn't know it.

I'm not sure why but the right lens always felt scratchy at one specific spot when I inserted it. I thought at first that maybe it was defective but I didn't see any visible flaw(s) on it and so I just kept trying until it felt sort-of wearable, which took at least three tries with careful cleaning of the lens between each try. The left lens was always perfectly fine (really notable comfort difference between the two!), nothing weird there. The right lens felt okay-ish at first, after all those tries, but slowly went back to that scratchy sensation and, again, at the very same spot (upper edge). :/ I had just enough time to take the photos for the review and then I took it out immediately. I just declared it defective at this point and sent an email to CirclelensesEurope stating my problem, they assured me that they always send out a replacement lens to customers if it's a production fault (defect) and, true to their words, I received the new lens within the next two days. Happy!

Replacement lens and what came with it.
As you can see I got it from Cirkellinser, for the Swedish market, but it's gonna be the same thing even from CirclelensesEurope since it's the same store. ^_^ On the photo above I'm showing the backside of the business card since they wrote a cute and caring message that reads "Dear [name], we hope that this lens will work better! Have a really nice day." – I'm more than pleased with the customer service! Also, when I wrote to them they were really kind, understanding and professional all through it and didn't doubt nor question my honesty at all. So yeah, I feel really safe dealing with them! ♥ Oh and of course, the replacement lens was perfectly fine to wear, yay!

Friendly reminder: it's never the store's fault if a lens is defective, they don't have control over it – you can be unlucky and get a defective lens of any brand of lenses and from any reputable store, big or small doesn't matter. Defective lenses are a manufacturer error during the creation process and, often times, the defective lens doesn't look any different from a normal lens – meaning that it's visually indistinguishable. Sometimes the defect is visible but you can't assume that you'll be able to see it with the naked eye every time, as was in my case. If a lens just doesn't feel right and is really uncomfortable to wear, even after multiple cleaning tries, it might be defective and in that case shouldn't be worn.
Also, most circle lens stores who care about their customers (and their reputation) will replace a defective lens if you contact them and tell what's wrong with your received lens – just like CirclelensesEurope did for me. :) Some stores might ask for photo proof, which is understandable (because there will always be people out there who will lie to get free products), but if you happen to have one of these "visually normal-looking" defects you should still be able to get around the photo request by detailing your experiences with the defective lens.

One lens in. Notice the size.
As you can see from the photo above my natural eye color is a light blue-gray mix with a faint golden brown ring around the pupil. These lenses aren't huge by any means but the enlargement effect is decent and noticeable indeed.
Regarding the color I was actually expecting these lenses to show up as more clearly brown than what they do but, then again, I should have seen it coming since the brown color is concentrated to only the very edges of the lens. It doesn't look bad by any means, more like the opposite – it's actually incredibly alluring and beautiful in the way that it enhances my eyes rather than directly changing the color. It's a bit hard to explain but I feel like these lenses were meant for the dark-eyed market (to create a cute and dolly "lighter rim" look) but wow, I seriously love how the darkness of the lens makes my light eyes pop and look all mysterious and magical!
You can see how the pupil hole is really large (aka how much of my real eye color shows through) and because of the way the lens is designed (dark colors at the edges only) it puts emphasis on what my real eye color is and just frames it in and makes it look really intense and mesmerizing. I adore the effect, although I must admit that this is definitely a fashion lens more than a cosplay lens, at least if you have light eyes like me.

Lens photos below!
All photos taken by me during a August afternoon with a semi-clear sky. All close-up photos are free from color filters and such and that's so that the colors would be as true to real life as possible.

Apartment room light. Only natural light.
Bathroom light.
Flash photo.
Facing a window in the corridor. Not sun side.
Yellow light in the staircase.
Indoors storage room. Natural light coming in from the side.
Basement floor. Really poor natural light in the distance.
Outdoors, facing the sun while being under the building's shadow.
Outdoors, back against the sun. Facing the wall, in other words.
Outdoors, facing the sun. Sun was hidden under a thin veil of clouds.
As you can see there's not much brown color in these and because of that it's actually my real eye color that gets the focus and thus these lenses appear more as an enhancer type of lens rather than a color changer – I mean, you notice that I'm wearing lenses but the first thought isn't "oh hey brown eyes!" but more like "his eyes look different", savvy what I mean? -_^ On brown eyes it would be a different story so I speak only for light-eyed individuals.
These lenses don't have enough color coverage to be viable for cosplay choices (unless you have dark eyes; I've seen my friend with brown-green eyes wear these for cosplay and it looked fabulous!) but these contacts are amazing for j-fashion styles like gyaru, mori, lolita and the like. I love how these lenses make my eyes look all doll-like and almost ethereal and glassy in some lights, it's so precious. *-*

When it comes to comfort it seems to be a bit mixed but mainly good. On the first day I wore these they started to feel dry already after 1 hour and 20 minutes but, then again, I had really dry eyes on that day so that might be why. Second time I wore these 4 hours went by just fine, which is better than average because my eyes are so sensitive nowadays that anything past 2-3 hours is good! I mainly don't feel them in my eyes and they don't blur my vision either.

Here, have some obligatory distance photos!




Want to see reviews of the GEO Princess Mimi series but in different colors?
Check out these: Apple Green

I need to mention that CircleLensesEurope and their Swedish counterpart don't carry prescription lenses at the moment, sorry to say it. I don't know if they plan to change that anytime soon since a lot of people have vision defects, me included, and need prescription lenses to see and wear lenses comfortably. My own vision defects are minor (-0,50 on my weaker eye) that I can get around just fine with plano lenses but yeah, if you can't wear lenses without power I'm really sorry to say that CircleLensesEurope don't carry prescription lenses for now. :'(

Remember, if you make a purchase at CircleLensesEurope or Cirkellinser you can get 10% off any order if you use the discount code "SAMURAI" during checkout – enjoy! ♡

Short summary:

Color: 4/10
These make my eyes appear darker and more defined at the edges, but they don't make my eyes appear legit brown since my real eye color overpowers the small amount of dark brown there is. It's a beautiful enhancing effect more than a lens you buy for color
– on light eyes at least. 
Design: 8/10
Simple yet beautiful design with a thick black limbal ring and darker brown irregular streaks reaching towards the center. Really cute!
Opacity: 3/10

The dark brown doesn't disappear into my eyes, meaning that it is decently opaque, but it doesn't stand out as brown either; it just looks like "something dark that frames the eyes", most likely because of the lack of area that the brown is printed on.
Don't get me wrong though, it's absolutely fantastic for the defined eyes look!
Enlargement: 6/10
Not as big as one might expect (despite being only a 14.2 lens according to the vials) but the dark colors makes quite the satisfying illusion of a bigger size.
Comfort: 5/10
Decent overall, but seems to be a bit of a mixed bag on sensitive eyes. I've been able to wear these for anything between 1-4 hours, depending on how dry my eyes are on that day.
Naturalness: 5/10

Actually not bad. It's not super realistic with the dark enhancement effect on light eyes (because of size) but it doesn't look blatantly off either.



• Sammanfattning på svenska

Vad är cirkellinser? 

Cirkellinser är kosmetiska linser som har tagit världen likt en glittrande armé av mongoler. Till en början användes dessa färgglada och förstorande linser främst i Asien av idoler, modeller och liknande men har sen dess blivit alltmer populära även bland "vanligt folk" och även i västvärlden – särskilt bland ungdomar som har ett intresse för asiatisk populärkultur och mode. Det som skiljer cirkellinser från vanliga färgade linser är att dom kommer i otroligt många olika designs och färger (även onaturliga färger så som röd, rosa, gul och lila är vanliga) samt att dom får dina ögon att se större och vackrare ut! Cirkellinser finns att köpa både med och utan styrka. Det är flest unga kvinnor som använder cirkellinser men även folk från alla möjliga könsidentiteter har fått upp ögonen för hur spännande och kul det kan vara att byta ögonfärg ibland för att komplettera och hitta den perfekta looken!

~~~~~~~~~

Cirkellinser är en svensk online-affär –förmodligen den första och enda i vårt avlånga land som säljer äkta "circle lenses", numera även kallade cirkellinser på svenska. Tyvärr så säljer inte Cirkellinser linser med styrka i dagens läge.

Jag valde denna gång att recensera ett jättepopulärt linspar som heter GEO Princess Mimi Almond Brown (bilder finns ovanför!) då jag länge varit sugen på att testa dem och se hur de faktiskt ser ut på en ljusögd person – jag har tidigare bara sett dem på mörkögda personer då majoriteten av alla som recenserar linser på nätet har bruna ögon. Men som sagt, mina utvalda linser anlände inom nån enstaka arbetsdag i ett vadderat kuvert. I brevet fanns även ett snyggt visitkort med en handskriven hälsning på baksidan, ett gratis linsetui samt linserna själv som var förpackade i en söt liten snörpåse – jättemysigt och personligt!

Linserna är inte lika tydligt bruna som jag ursprungligen trodde, fast å andra sidan är det ganska uppenbart nu när man tänker efter då det färgade området är printat endast utmed en kort sträcka på kanterna och därmed är majoriteten av linsens mitt genomskinligt, vilket betyder att det är din riktiga ögonfärg som får fokuset på sig. Så jah, om man har ljusa ögon så köper man inte dessa för att ändra ögonfärg (dina ögon kommer inte att se förstahand bruna ut, med andra ord) utan för att framhäva sina ögon och få dom att se sådär mystiskt docklika, magiska och djupa ut! Det är en väldigt fin effekt och alldeles underbar för fans av japanska modestilar såsom gyaru, mori, lolita och liknande. Linserna är även lagomt stora och helt schyssta i bekvämlighet.

Jag hade oturen att råka på en defekt lins denna gång, den ena linsen liksom skavde alltid i ögat och var allmänt obekväm, oavsett hur många gånger jag tvättade rent den och försökte igen. Den vänstra linsen var däremot helt normal!

Grejen med defekta linser är att det kan ske vem som helst, vilka linser som helst och oavsett vilken affär du köpte från – det är ett produktionsfel och ibland är själva felet osynligt för blotta ögat, och därmed är det inte heller affärens fel då dem varken tillverkar linserna själva eller kan se om en lins är defekt eller ej, precis som du. I mitt fall så var det inget synligt fel på den defekta linsen men den var helt enkelt för obekväm för att jag skulle riskera att använda den. Jag tog därmed kontakt med Cirkellinser och skrev om mitt problem, deras svar löd "tråkigt att din nya lins är skadad. Du behöver inte vara orolig, vi skickar alltid ut ersättningslins till kund om det är en tillverkningsskada, vilket sällan sker som tur är :)" – superbäst! ♥ Så jag fick min nya lins inom två arbetsdagar och allt var perfekt. Hade absolut inga problem med att dem envisades, begärde bilder eller trodde att jag försökte lura dom – allt var väldigt proffsigt och enkelt. Grymt bra kundservice med andra ord, inget onödigt tjafs eller tjorv.
Linserna fick jag från Cirkellinser, en av mina sponsorer, i recensionssyfte. ^u^ Men fast jag inte själv betalat för just detta par så påverkar det absolut inte min ärlighet det minsta! Jag kan ärligt talat säga att Cirkellinser är en professionell och pålitlig hemsida och att jag, utan att tveka, skulle lätt beställa från dom själv även om jag inte var sponsrad. De säljer äkta cirkellinser som är tillverkade i Korea, ursprungslandet för dom alla flesta märkena.
Cirkellinser innehar även en äkthetsgaranti samt öppet köp i 30 dagar – de gör verkligen sitt yttersta för att du ska känna dig trygg och nöjd med ditt köp. Beställningar som gjorts före klockan 14:00 skickas samma vardag och frakttiden inom Sverige ligger på 1-2 dagar och kostar endast 19 kr. Jag kan varmt rekommendera deras onlinebutik till alla som är intresserade av att prova på att använda färgade kontaktlinser!
 
Min rabattkod "SAMURAI" ger dig dessutom 10% rabattdin beställning hos dem, glöm inte att använda koden i kassan!



Thanks for reading! ^-^
A big thank you to CircleLensesEurope and Cirkellinser for making this review possible!

~ Shiro Samurai out.

August 12, 2017

Lens review: Flora Diva Green

Yooo folks! 

Ready for another circle lens review? I for sure am!
This time the spotlight is on the Flora Diva Green lenses, a beautiful green lens that I'd recommend for bishounen characters and the like!
I haven't seen the Flora brand of lenses for sale anywhere else than at HoneyColor, just in case anyone wants to know where to purchase these. No, I'm not sponsored by them, if anyone wonders.

Let's get on with the review!



Base curve: 8.6 mm
Diameter: 15.0 mm
Water content: 55%
Life span: 1 year (I recommend 6 months)


The design is sort of simple but it's really appealing to me nonetheless! It's an incredibly pretty lens with a flower petal-ish print and a thin black limbal ring to add definition. There's some irregular black streaks reaching towards the pupil hole as well and these help in making the lenses appear more lively. It's a beautiful and alluring design that is great for cosplayers and alternative fashion fans alike!

One lens in.
I have light blue-gray (gray-blue, idk) eyes naturally and these definitely make my eyes look unmistakably green, which is a feat already in itself because a lot of green lenses end up looking muddy and bland on light blue-ish eyes like mine. I'm so happy with the color payoff of these, it's amazing and such a fresh and bright green shade to boot! This lens will definitely show up as green on any eye color, I'm pretty sure!

Lens photos below!
All photos taken by me during an August morning with a clear sky. All close-up photos are free from color filters and such and that's so that the colors would be as true to real life as possible.

Apartment room light, only natural light.
Bathroom light.
Flash photo.
Facing a window in the corridor. Not sun side.
White light in the corridor.
Yellow light in the staircase.
Indoors storage room. Natural light turned blue on camera for some reason.
Basement floor. Poor natural light in the distance.
Outdoors, back against the sun. Facing the wall, in other words.
Outdoors, facing the sun.
I can't help but think that these gives the look of fairytale eyes, haha. -U- The size is on the bigger side but it's not eating up my eyes either; these will work for dolly looks if that's what you like. I would love to use these for cosplaying some pretty boy characters since these lenses show up well from a distance and look all magical and sparkly if the light hits in a certain way!

Regarding comfort I'm extremely pleased, like seriously! I have really dry eyes naturally and I could easily wear these past 5 hours with no problems – I literally don't even feel them in my eyes for most of the time. I did notice though that in poorer lights (especially indoors) I do sometimes experience a slight blur/haze but it's nothing that really bothers me and it's really minor anyway. I wore these for approximately 6 hours before I got a random headache and decided to take them off, although the lenses still didn't feel dry at that point. Here you should know that normally anything past 3 hours is good in my standards but these are like, fucking comfort beasts in comparison. 8D It was so long ago since I last had such comfy lenses! I had almost forgotten that they existed. Definitely recommended in other words – give them a try if you're yearning for some legit awesome green lenses!

Distance photo!


Interested in reviews of the Flora Diva lenses in other colors?
Check out these: Violet, Gray

Short summary:

Color: 9/10
Lovely fresh and vibrant green color. Appears a true and non-muddy green!
Design: 8/10
A mesmerizing and versatile flower petal print. Cannot go wrong with this one!
Opacity: 8/10
Solid coverage, really good for costuming purposes.
Enlargement: 7/10
Definitely on the bigger side but not massive by any means.
Comfort: 9/10
Amazing comfort! I can easily wear these 5-6 hours with no problems and I have really dry eyes naturally. I don't feel them in my eyes for most of the time, save for slight blur in poor light conditions.
Naturalness: 2/10
Too big and too unrealistically green to pass off as any kind of natural, to be honest.

Thanks for reading and do leave a comment if you have any questions!

August 10, 2017

Lens review: Vassen Sakura Candy Red

Hello puppies!

I will be reviewing a circle lens today – it's gonna be all about the Vassen Sakura Candy Red! What we have is a quite simple lens with a great dose of color and a huge black limbal ring, which in turn makes the lenses appear really cute and colorful. ^_^

Yo ho, let's go ~



Base curve: 8.6 mm
Diameter: 14.5 mm
Water content: 42% 
Life span: 1 year (I recommend 6 months)


This kind of lens style is popular with cosplayers, or at least that's the impression I got a couple years back when I first started using circle lenses. It's a simple single-tone red color that gradually fades towards the center and the print also features a really thick black limbal ring. I'd say that it's a pretty big lens, but it's not too big either; the bold limbal ring adds to the illusion.
The color is surprisingly vibrant and it pops in most lights. It's a crisp and bright shade and adds to the whole lens looking 'anime' – definitely cosplay material, as long as you're not too bothered by the large pupil hole.

One lens in. Notice enlargement effect.
Regarding comfort the lenses are thin and a bit floppy; I had some problems inserting them because of that the first time. I sometimes feel them in my eyes directly after insertion but I get used to the feeling rather fast and it disappears quickly too. These lenses don't block out my vision in any way and are nice while worn – I don't really feel them much in my eyes, which is always a good thing!
I got some occasional dry bouts but they only lasted a couple minutes at most and then the lenses went back to normal but I don't know, it happens to me with pretty much any lenses nowadays so I don't know what to think about it, lol. After 4,5 hours they suddenly felt really dry out of nowhere so yeah, I guess that's approximate wearing time for me. Pretty good, considering how horribly dry eyes I tend to have.

Lens photos below!
All photos taken by me during a August morning with a clear sky. All close-up photos are free from color filters etc and that's so that the colors would be as true to real life as possible.


Apartment room light. Only natural light.
Bathroom light.
Flash photo.
Facing a window in the corridor. Not sun side.
White light in the corridor.
Yellow light in the staircase.
Indoors storage room. Natural light that turned weirdly blue on camera.
Basement floor. Poor natural light in the distance.
Outdoors, back against the sun. Facing wall.
Outdoors, facing sun. Yes, it's painful.
I love red lenses, it's such a cool color! It's obviously not natural by any means but there's something with the red pairs that really catches my fancy, hehe...

I also want to mention that I've come to notice that a general rule of thumb is that the bigger the lens is the bigger the pupil opening tends to be, which in turn means that more of your real eye color will show through the center. Of course there are exceptions but yeah, this is the general conclusion that I've landed at. Just thought I'd throw that piece of information out into the world. :)

Distance photo!


Short summary:

Color: 9/10
Really fresh and bright red lenses that show up well!

Design: 7/10
Simple yet cute lens design with a single color and a bold black outer ring.
Opacity: 8/10 

The color is opaque and fades beautifully towards the center. Just be mindful of the big pupil hole if you dislike that look.
Enlargement: 8/10
Definitely on the bigger side but still wearable for casual-ish looks as well, assuming you rock a fancy style.
Comfort: 7/10 

Pretty good. A bit flimsy to put in but I don't really feel them in my eyes once worn. Wearing time approximately 4,5 hours on my dry eyes, possibly longer.
Naturalness: 1/10
Big red eyes, you say? No, not cutting it.

Thanks for reading my circle lens reviews!
Shiro Samurai says sayonara.