Category Archives: Makeup talk

It’s Been 4 Years, Y’all

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4 Years

4 Years

It’s been 4 years here at BeautyinBudgetBlog.  4 years.  That is the longest that I have ever worked on any single project in my entire life.  And I have to say that it has been a hell of a ride over the last 4 years.  This is my 738th post.  I have thousands of comments.  I have been able to interact with people, not just all over the country, but all over the world.  I’m lookin’ at you Botswana, Albania, Kenya, Slovenia, Hungary, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, and 153 other countries that are too many to name but all equally amazing to me.  I never in a million years would have ever guessed someone from Azerbaijan (or anywhere else for that matter) would ever care what I have to say.  I started this blog for a couple reasons.  I thought that it would be fun.  I wanted a place to talk about my growing obsession with makeup with other people who were equally obsessed.  And, it has been a lot of fun.  My mother might look at me strangely when I am on the edge of my seat awaiting Tarte’s new Holiday releases, but the internet geeks out with me over each new collection.  I love being an active member of the beauty community, and it really has become a “community” in every sense of the word.  In addition to the fun, I also wanted to start this blog as a service to others.  I am often frustrated by the makeup machine that keeps producing more and more product for higher and higher prices.  So many people on Youtube and in blogs were gushing over the higher-end brands, but there weren’t nearly as many people focused on drugstore brands or cheaper alternatives.  It is so hard to tell what is worth spending our money on, and that was my primary goal.  I wanted to explore beauty that fits into a budget so that you don’t have to drop half a paycheck to get glammed up.  I have gotten countless comments over the years with people telling me that this blog has saved them money and introduced them to products that they never would have considered otherwise.  I’ve gotten comments from women who had given up on makeup, but now have a renewed interest thanks to the blog.  Even better, I’ve gotten comments from people who feel more beautiful and confident as a result of playing with techniques and products that they have discovered through this blog.  I think that is so wonderful, and exactly why I do what I do.

I know that makeup can be a frivolous thing, and it is easy to look at this blog in the same way.  I have certainly done it at at times.  But when I really think about it, the connections that I have made and the feedback that I have gotten is anything but frivolous.  I am blown away and humbled by the consistent love and support that I have been shown over the last 4 years.  I am so flattered that any of you read my words, and I am so honored that I have been able to help you in a small way.  I don’t know what the future will look like here at BiBB, but I appreciate you being along for the ride.  Thank you for the last 4 years.

BECCA Cosmetics Now Available at Ulta

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Becca

BECCA Cosmetics Now Available at Ulta

I have some beauty news for you today.  Ulta is now carrying BECCA cosmetics.  BECCA is a brand that is all about enhancing your natural beauty.  Here is their philosophy, taken from their website: “Perfection is yours to define. Polished or undone. Soft or sultry. Whatever you want to achieve, perfected skin is the essential starting point. Through premium formulas and expert tips, BECCA can help you attain a natural, effortless complexion that elevates your every look. BECCA presents a highly curated selection of cosmetics that further reveal your natural beauty rather than covering it up. By matching your skin tone, you can create perfect looking skin while highlighting your favorite features and amplifying the look with a dramatic eye or bright lip when the mood strikes. Lightweight, luxurious and advanced, BECCA makes your entire beauty routine a more enjoyable experience while still performing all day.

BECCA Cosmetics Now Available at Ulta

BECCA Cosmetics Now Available at Ulta

BECCA is now available at Ulta.  You can shop the brand online right now, and it will be arriving in select stores August 9th.  To promote the new brand, Ulta is offering free shipping on you entire order with any BECCA purchase.  They are also offering a free gift of a full-size BECCA Beach Tint ($25 value) with any $30 BECCA purchase.  I love seeing new brands pop up at Ulta.  Though you can already buy BECCA from Sephora, I prefer Ulta’s rewards program, so I’d rather shop there.  Now if we could only get Josie Maran at Ulta.  Oh well, BECCA is a good start.  😉

Happy Birthday from Sephora and Ulta 2014

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Happy Birthday from Sephora and Ulta

Happy Birthday from Sephora and Ulta

Today I have the free Birthday gifts from Sephora and Ulta to show you.  If you are a rewards member at Ulta and a Beauty Insider at Sephora, you are entitled to a free birthday gift with no purchase necessary.  Sephora has had this program going for a while now, but this is Ulta’s inaugural year.  My birthday is next week, but I was able to pick up both gifts already so I have them here to show you.  Let’s start with Sephora.

Happy Birthday from Sephora

Happy Birthday from Sephora 2014

This year, the Sephora Beauty Insider Birthday Day Gift is this Make Up For Ever Happy Birthday Celebration duo.  The set features deluxe size samples of Make Up For Ever Smoky Extravagant Mascara and Rouge Artist Natural lipstick in N9 Copper Pink.  The mascara brush has a fun shape, and it is designed for dramatic lashes.  The mini lipstick is a gorgeous warm pink with brown undertones, perfect for me.  I am really happy with this year’s free gift.  If you are not a Sephora Beauty Insider, you really should be.  It’s free to sign up, and even if you don’t buy anything from Sephora, you still get a free birthday gift every year.  Last year’s gift was a set from Benefit, and the year before that was a duo of Fresh Sugar lip treatments.  If you are a VIB Rouge member, you also will receive an MUFE Aqua Eyes eyeliner sample for your birthday along with the mascara and lipstick.

Happy Birthday from Ulta

Happy Birthday from Ulta 2014

Ulta’s first free Birthday gift is a full-sized Signature CK One Mascara.  It has an adjustable wand, where the shorter and plumper size is supposed to help with volume, and the longer size is supposed to help with added length.  Gimmicky, maybe, but still pretty cool.  I am happy with this gift, though mascara wouldn’t have been my first choice.  I do love that, unlike Sephora, Ulta is giving out full size birthday gifts.  I have mentioned Ulta’s Reward program many times on this blog, so I won’t go into detail now.  I will just say that I prefer it to Sephora’s program because points earned  convert into dollars off your purchases instead of pre-picked gifts that you may or may not want.  It’s free to join at Ulta as well, and it is definitely worth it.

So, those were my Birthday freebies from Sephora and Ulta.  You can’t really complain about getting free stuff, am I right?  Oh, and I have a question for you.  Are you interested in me doing a birthday haul?  I hesitate because hauls aren’t as much fun in blog form as they are in video, which is why I stopped doing them.  But I’ll do a haul post if you want to see it.  Let me know in the comments below.  My birthday is next Tuesday, and I will definitely have more beauty stuff on the way.

Urban Decay Electric Palette

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Urban Decay Electric Palette

Urban Decay Electric Palette

Urban Decay has another very exciting release coming up, and this time they are getting back to their roots.  If you have been bored with the UD Naked collection, then the new Electric Palette may be for you.  The Urban Decay Electric Palette will contain ten vibrant pressed pigment shades for color lovers to ooh and ahhh over.  There are a couple repeat shades from other palettes, like Revolt and Chaos, but there are also several new shades in various finishes.  The palette will be released March 18th, and will retail for around $50.  You’ll be able to pick it up at Sephora, Ulta, or urbandecay.com.

I totally recommend checking out Leesha’s (XSparkage) video with swatches of the palette and a review with her thoughts on how successful the UD Electric Palette really is.  Definitely subscribe to her of you are a fan of color.  She always has very interesting and colorful looks to show.  It should play after the ad.  (This is my first attempt at embedding a video, so fingers crossed.)   🙂

I am probably going to pass on this one because I have so many palettes already and I’m trying to pair down instead of adding more before my move.  How about you?  Are you excited about Urban Decay’s upcoming  Electric Palette?  Let me know in the comments below.

Makeup Tips to Help You Look Younger

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ManyCandlesBirthday

I remember as a kid watching the movie “Steel Magnolias” many times with my mom.  One line that stuck out to me that I though was oh so funny at the time is spoken by Dolly Parton’s character to Julia Roberts’ character after she admits to finding the first stages of crow’s feet.  “Honey, time marches on and eventually you realize it is marchin’ across your face.”  Ha-ha.  *sigh*  If you are old enough to remember that scene, then this post is for you, my peeps.  I love the beauty community and all the information that is available, but the online beauty presence is overwhelmingly made up of young women and girls.  Though I fully support anyone brave enough to put themselves out there with blogs or Youtube accounts at any age, the 30+ demographic is getting missed, let alone those in their 40’s or 50’s and beyond.  The tricks and techniques that it seems everyone is doing don’t always work on skin that isn’t firm and taught.  Some can even make us look older, and we sure as hell don’t want that.  I am in my mid 30’s, so I have a lot of time to go, but I can definitely see that I am not 20 anymore.  Here are some tips and tricks from my own research and experience that are geared toward those who have noticed a little softening or sagging and don’t want to emphasize their flaws.  And even if you are still in your 20’s, these are good things to keep in mind for the future.

FACE:

Start with the best canvas.  Obviously good skincare is essential at any age.  A beautiful face of makeup starts with good skin, so be sure that you are moisturizing and exfoliating. As far as makeup, I really think that primer is necessary as you mature.  Primer helps to fill in pores as they get larger with age, as well as smooth over lines and any dry patches that you may have.  Yes, it’s an extra step, but it makes a huge difference and is well worth it.

Avoid the Matte Myth.  As we age our skin tends to get dryer. Even women with oily skin in their youth will see a decline in oil production as they age.  Because our skin changes so much, the foundation that we used for years may not be the best for us anymore, especially if it is mattifying.  There is some controversy over what I like to call the “Matte Myth”.  Some people swear that once you hit 40 every product you use has to be matte.  That makes no sense to me.  If I already have dry skin in my 30’s, why on earth would I use matte foundations in my 50’s that will just dry me out even more?  Younger skin has a natural glow, and we should try to reproduce that trait with the right products.  I personally believe that a light foundation or tinted moisturizer with a dewy or satin finish is best for mature skin.  Avoid thicker formulas because they will cake up.

Apples aren’t your friends.  When it comes to blush, how many times have you heard to smile to find the apples of your cheeks and apply your blush there?  Too many to count, right?  Do me a favor, look in the mirror, smile, and put your finger on the apple of your cheek.  Go ahead, I’ll wait.  You didn’t do it did you?  Seriously, go do it.  No, really.  In the mirror you can see the apples of your cheeks are nice and high.  Now, keep your finger on your cheek and stop smiling.  Did you see your finger drop?  I know.  It will be okay.  As we get older our features start to droop as we loose elasticity.  That means that our apples get lower and lower, so applying blush to the apples of our cheeks can actually make us look older and sort of like one of those sad crying clown paintings.  Instead, apply blush to the high points of the cheek bone toward the temples.  Just be sure to blend well so you don’t look like you have stripes on the side of your face.  (Is it the 80’s already?)  Also, I really think that a satin finish blush or even one with a subtle shimmer is the best bet.  Remember, we want to avoid the Matte Myth and bring back a youthful glow.  Just be sure not to go too shimmery because chunky glitter looks really odd on anyone over 15.

EYES:

Control your shimmer, woman.  Okay, so we all know by now that I love me a shimmer shadow.  That’s never going to go away, and I refuse to kiss shimmer goodbye.  And I don’t see any reason why I should have too.  The reason people avoid shimmer is because they don’t want the light to reflect and emphasize wrinkles and creases.  Older women often limit themselves to matte neutrals for this reason.  That’s a fair point, but you don’t want your eyes to get lost in the shuffle.  If you want to detract from the lines on your face, what better way to do it than to play up the eyes that can definitely still look bright or sultry.  A little bit of shimmer can give you the extra oomph you need to make the eyes the focus of your face.  Just be smart about placement.  Keep shimmer limited to the moving part of your lid.  Avoid the crease because shimmer will bring out folds there, so a matte crease color is best.  Also, be sure to use a matte highlight on the brow bone.  The section under the brow can droop substantially and you don’t want to call attention to that area, so a matte highlight is key.  With that flash of shimmer just on the lid, your eyes will command attention without turning on you.  And keep in mind that primer is your friend.  Prime your lids first, you’ll thank me later.

Limit your color palette, but don’t throw it out.  I’m sorry, but the days of cobalt blue eyeshadow are over.  Don’t despair, though, because there are still plenty of colors that you can still wear.  You are going to want to steer clear of really bright pop art colors, but you are not completely limited to shades of brown and gray.  Olive or forest greens are still definitely on the table, as well as pinks, peaches, and plums.  Don’t be afraid to pop some color, but use it strategically with other neutral shades.

Brown is best.  Black eyeliner can look too harsh on older eyes, but you don’t want to go without liner completely.  As your lashes thin, you definitely want to bring out that lashline and frame your eyes.  Liquid liners are tricky on aging eyes and can sink into fine lines and feather.  Pencils will work best with lines and creases without going where you don’t want it.  Use a pencil liner in a dark brown shade.  It will look more natural than black, but still have the right impact.  Line three quarters of the lash line (top and bottom), but leave the inner corner bare.  Lining the entire eye all around can close it off and make your eyes look smaller.

LIPS:

Your lips don’t lie, though it’d be great if they did.  Your lips lose fullness and start to look thinner and thinner as you get older, the traitors.  Because of that, you are going to want to avoid dark or vampy colors for the most part.  Now, I am not saying that you can’t still rock a red lip every so often, but it should probably sit out of regular season and just come out for the play-offs.  (Did I just use a sports metaphor?  What is wrong with me?)  Dark colors tend to make lips look smaller anyway, so they aren’t going to do you any favors.  Now is the time to start your love affair with nudes, mauves, and berries.  If you do go for a darker shade, be sure to line your lips to keep the color from feathering or migrating.  (That may be a good practice, no mater what your lip color.)  Oh, and keep the finish in mind.  Just say no to frost and pearl.  All a frost will do is take every line or crack on your lips and shout “Look at me, I’m here and I have friends!”

Be the master of illusion.  I can see why older women avoid lipgloss.  High shine lips definitely look better on youthful faces.  However, you may want to pick one up.  The thing about light is that it brings things forward.  That’s how contouring works, highlights bring features forward and shadows pull them back creating defined shapes.  You can kind of do the same thing on your lips to make them look fuller than they really are.  By adding a dab of gloss to the center of your lip it gives the illusion of fullness.  To add to the effect, you can also shade the outer edges of you lip with a lip liner.

I hope that you found these tips helpful.  If you have any other tips on how to look younger with makeup please share them in the comments so that we can all benefit.  Before I wrap up, though, I do want to say one thing.  I strongly believe that beauty comes in many packages and I do not equate youth and beauty.  It can be hard to see our physical appearance change, and our wrinkles may not always be welcome, but they do not have to be the enemy.  Our lines show that we’ve lived.  And remember, “Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, beautiful old people are works of art.” -Eleanor Roosevelt

Changes to Ulta Rewards Program

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Ulta Logo

Ulta Logo

There are some changes to the Ulta rewards program for 2014 that you should probably be aware of.  Most notable, in my opinion, is that the threshold for Platinum status is now $400 in one year instead of $350.  I received an email from Ulta outlining the changes, so I’m going to just re-post what the email said.

Thank you for being a valued ULTAmate Rewards® member. We would like to take this opportunity to share some ULTAmate Rewards® program changes for 2014.

New 2014 Birthday Gift
Celebrate your birthday with a FREE full-sized mascara, compliments of CK One and ULTA! Look for your birthday gift coupon in an ULTA email at the beginning of your birthday month.* And don’t forget — you earn 2X points on everything you buy during your birthday month. Plus, if you’re a Platinum member, you’ll get an extra special birthday gift.

2014 Platinum Program
Experience Platinum perks through the end of 2015 by spending at least $400 at ULTA in 2014. Every pre-tax purchase you make counts toward the $400 threshold. This includes both online and in-store purchases – as well as Salon Services!

Platinum members enjoy these pretty perks:

  • Earn points 25% faster (1.25 pts per $1 spent)
  • Take advantage of special Platinum bonus offers, such as 3X points, Salon discounts, and free gifts
  • Your points never expire while you’re a Platinum member
  • Receive a special Platinum birthday gift coupon – $10 Off anything!

Salon Indulgences
On February 23, we will no longer be accepting point redemptions for Salon Indulgences, as we are discontinuing that portion of our program. In lieu of Salon Indulgences, Platinum members will receive special Salon offers throughout the year. You have from now until February 22 to book and complete any Salon Indulgence appointments.

Remember, you will continue to earn ULTAmate Rewards® points on every Salon Service you purchase, and can redeem your points for discounts on any of our 20,000+ products in-store and online.  Thank you again for being an ULTAmate Rewards ® member! We appreciate your business and hope you will continue to make ULTA your one-stop beauty destination.

Sincerely,

The ULTAmate Rewards® Team

It’s great that we now get a birthday gift just like at Sephora, but the rest of the changes are a bummer.  I do love being able to redeem my points, though.  The Ulta rewards program is totally worth it.  I like to save my points throughout the year so that I can redeem for higher end palettes during the Holidays.  I was able to get the Naked 3 palette for less than $20 because of my points.  The changes aren’t great, but I still prefer Ulta’s reward program to Sephorah’s.  Are you an Ulta shopper?  What do you think of the 2014 changes that Ulta is making?  Let me know in the comments below.

Perfect Palette Tag

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I have something fun for today.  I’ve been seeing the Perfect Palette tag going around youtube for a while now, and I really wanted to do it here on the blog.  It’s a short, 8 question tag that focuses on palettes, and who doesn’t love palettes?  I decided to set some rules for myself that the palettes have to be pre-arranged (as in no Inglot or Mac (etc.) palettes with shades that I choose myself).  Also, as it worked out, these are all non-drugstore brands.  If you want me to do something like this with drugstore, let me know.  So, now let the fun begin.

Tarte Gorgeous Getaways Palette

Tarte Gorgeous Getaways Palette

Best Packaging: I could have gone many ways with this category, and almost went with my Balm Jovi Palette because it’s adorable, but instead I chose the Tarte Gorgeous Getaways Palette.  Although it is a little bulky, I just love that it has the travel palette so you can take each quad of shadows and a blush with you.  The packaging really sold me on this palette, and I am so glad that I got it.  This one was limited edition for the holidays, so I don’t think that you can still get it (but I could be wrong).  Sorry about that.  I promise that this is the only palette in this post that you can’t get your hands on.

Urban Decay Dangerous palette

Urban Decay Dangerous palette

Best Color Payoff: I chose the Urban Decay Dangerous palette for this category, but really any UD palette would have done.  I went ahead and swatched the shadows so that you could see them.  This is done with no primer and with me just swiping the color once on my hand.  They are all crazy-pigmented and totally gorgeous.  Look at those jewel tones.  Urban Decay has some of the most pigmented shadows on the market, in my opinion.  Even though this came out a long time ago, the Dangerous palette is currently $16 on UD’s website (which is how I got it).

Lorac Pro palette

Lorac Pro palette

Most Versatile:  I had to go with Lorac Pro for the most versatile palette.  It has an entire row of matte and an entire row of shimmer and metallics.  There are many neutral shades, but there are also some color shades to add some variety.  You can accomplish so many looks with this palette and the shadows work really well with each other.  Lorac Pro is one of my favorites and is totally worth the money.

Urban Decay Shattered Face Case

Urban Decay Shattered Face Case

Best for Traveling: I love my Urban Decay Shattered Face Case for traveling.  It’s so compact, but fits an entire face worth of makeup inside (minus foundation and mascara).  The packaging is sturdy, so I don’t worry about it opening or breaking in my bag.  I took the Shattered Face Case to Orlando with me, and I had no problems with it.  It was handy and a good addition.  Urban Decay Shattered Face Case is an Ulta exclusive, and is currently on sale at ulta.com.

TheBalm Shady Lady palettes

TheBalm Shady Lady palettes

Biggest Regret:  So, here’s the deal with TheBalm Shady Lady palettes.  I got these on super sale.  They retail for $39.50 each on thebalm’s website, but I got all three for around $30.  It was a great deal, and they are really good palettes, but I never reach for them because I have other palettes that I like better.  Even though the sale was amazing and theBalm has really good eyeshadow, I shouldn’t have gotten them because I never use them.

the Balm Jovi palette

the Balm Jovi palette

Best Color Names: For me, a music lover, hands down the best shade names are in the Balm Jovi palette by theBalm.  I love everything about this palette, and the packaging is so freakin’ cute.  The shade names just kill me.  Alice Copper, Lead Zeppelin, Third Eye Blinded… I mean come on!  And the classical section is great too.  I had to get this palette as soon as I saw it.

TheBalm Nude Tude

TheBalm Nude Tude

Least Used:  I do not regret getting TheBalm Nude Tude palette because it is really great, but I do not use it as much as I should.  As good as it is, I prefer the Naked 2 and the Lorac Pro for neutral eyes.  I pretty much stopped using Nude Tude as soon as I got Lorac Pro.  I really should go back to it because it’s so pretty and the shadows are really good.

Urban Decay Naked 2

Urban Decay Naked 2

Most Used, Most Loved, Desert Island:  I have to say that my most loved palette is my Urban Decay Naked 2.  I’ve used it so much and it hardly looks like I’ve put a dent in it.  I really love taupe eyeshadow, and the Naked 2 palette is perfect for me.  I like the packaging, and Urban Decay shadows are fantastic.  I had a hard time deciding between this and the Lorac Pro, but I just really really love Naked 2, so it eventually won out.

I hope that you enjoyed this tag.  I had fun putting it together.  I have a ton of palettes because I am addicted to eyeshadow and love palettes so much.  I didn’t realize how many theBalm palettes I have.  I also have quite a bit of Urban Decay.  I definitely need to pull out some of my less loved palettes and show them some attention.  I think I’m pretty set on eyeshadow for a while.  😉