Category Archives: Revlon

Some Interesting New Drugstore Items for 2016

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New for 2016

New for 2016

It’s a new year, and that means that there are a ton of new products out for our enjoyment.  There are so many new collections out right now that it is tough to keep track of all of them.  I decided that it might be fun to show you some of the new items from the drugstore that caught my interest.  This is by no means an exhaustive list of what is new in the drugstore, but rather the items that look interesting to me.  A couple of the items have been out for a few weeks now, but most of them are just now hitting the shelves.  I am going to try to include pricing, but please remember that prices vary by location.

Maybelline Color Tattoo Concentrated Crayon

Maybelline Color Tattoo Concentrated Crayon

I am probably the most excited to try the new Maybelline Color Tattoo Concentrated Crayons.  What?  Yes, the super popular Maybelline Color Tattoos are now available in crayon form instead of the pots.  I don’t know how the formula has changed to accommodate the new style of Color Tattoos, but I really hope that they are as good as the pots were.  I also hope that they expand the shade range soon because these shades are great for fitting basic needs but not terribly unique.  These retail at Ulta for $6.99.

Maybelline Dream Velvet Soft-Matte Hydrating Foundation

Maybelline Dream Velvet Soft-Matte Hydrating Foundation

Another Maybelline item that caught my eye is the new Maybelline Dream Velvet Soft-Matte Hydrating Foundation.  Hydrating and matte don’t usually go together, so right away I am intrigued.  Maybelline claims that it is a refreshing gel-whipped foundation that leaves complexion perfected and smooth with a velvety, soft-matte finish while skin stays hydrated for 12 hours.  I have tried whipped mousse foundation, but no gel-based foundations, so I am sold.  I have to know what this formula is like.  The Maybelline Dream Velvet Soft-Matte Hydrating Foundation retails for $10.99 at Ulta.

 Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water All-in-1 Makeup Remover & Cleanser


Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water All-in-1 Makeup Remover & Cleanser

You can’t watch Youtube these days without Micellar water making an appearance in some way, and I am interested in the Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water All-in-1 Makeup Remover & Cleanser.  This has been out in some areas for a little bit and has gotten some great reviews.  Here is the blurb: “This All-in-1 cleanser is surprisingly powerful yet gentle to skin. It effectively removes makeup, cleanses skin and refreshes. A multi-purpose cleanser that contains Micellar technology. Like a magnet, micelles capture and lift away dirt, oil and makeup without harsh rubbing, leaving skin perfectly clean, hydrated and refreshed without over-drying. Dermatologist tested for safety. Ophthalmologist tested. Non-comedogenic–won’t clog pores.”  Micellar water is intriguing to me, and I want to know more.  The Garnier version retails for $8.99 at Ulta.

Physicians Formula Mineral Wear Talc-Free All-in-1 ABC Cushion Foundation SPF 50

Physicians Formula Mineral Wear Talc-Free All-in-1 ABC Cushion Foundation SPF 50

Cushion foundations are hitting the market hard right now, and I am most interested in the Physicians Formula Mineral Wear Talc-Free All-in-1 ABC Cushion Foundation SPF 50.  Physicians Formula claims that it is a creamy mineral fluid foundation that promises to correct visible imperfections, blur lines, and leave skin with an airbrushed finish as well as protect it with an SPF 50 Broad Spectrum Sunscreen.  I have never used a cushion foundation, and although I know that Korean brands have been producing them for years, they are relatively new to the US.  L’Oreal has also released a new cushion foundation, but this Physicians Formula is more appealing to me.  The one major drawback for me, though, is the price tag.  Both the Physicians Formula and the L’Oreal cushion foundations are between $16 and $18, depending on where you get them.  That is pretty steep for the drugstore.  Still, the product is intriguing.

Nyx Cosmetics Whipped Lip and Cheek Soufflé

Nyx Cosmetics Whipped Lip and Cheek Soufflé

Next I have a slew of lip products to show you, the first of which is the NYX Cosmetics Whipped Lip and Cheek Soufflé.  This is a 2-in-1 whipped mousse for you cheeks and lips that leaves a matte finish.  It has a doe-foot applicator with a pointed tip for precise lip application.  You can also dab a little of the mousse on your finger to apply a wash of color to your cheek.  I like 2-in-1 products, and I am interested to see what NYX has come up with.  If there is a brand that I trust with stellar cheek and lip products, it is NYX.  The Whipped Lip and Cheek Soufflés retail for $5.99 at Ulta.

Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lip Color

Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lip Color

I am also interested in the Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lip Colors.  These are a lightweight gel matte formula, which is different.  The Ultra HD Matte Lip Colors have been out for about a month now, and the reviews have been mixed.  The main complaint that I have seen is that they don’t actually dry down to a fully matte finish.  I can see why that is a big problem for a product with the word “matte” in the name, but it’s not an issue for me.  I have not jumped on the matte lip cream bandwagon because my lips are too dry to follow that particular trend.  I think that they are lovely, but they just make my lips looks pickled.  So a demi-matte, comfortable formula like this is way more my speed that a true matte.  These are $8.99 at Ulta.

L'Oréal Infallible Pro-Matte Gloss

L’Oréal Infallible Pro-Matte Gloss

Along the same lines is the new L’Oréal Infallible Pro-Matte Gloss.  Like the Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lip Colors this is a demi-matte lip product that keeps a certain level of hydration to keep lips from drying out.  I am not sure which lip product I am more interested in between the Revlon and the L’Oreal.  They seem pretty similar by the description.  If any of you have tried either of these two products, I’d love to hear your thoughts.  The L’Oréal Infallible Pro-Matte Gloss retails at Ulta for $9.99.

CoverGirl Colorlicious Oh Sugar! Lip Balm

CoverGirl Colorlicious Oh Sugar! Lip Balm

The final item that I have to talk about to today is the CoverGirl Colorlicious Oh Sugar! Lip Balm.  Here is the blurb: “CoverGirl’s Colorlicious Oh Sugar! Lip Balm is a vitamin infused, moisturizing lip treatment that nourishes, protects and smooths lips. Grapeseed oil, avocado butter and vitamins C and E lock in moisture, keeping lips soft and smooth.”  I believe that these tinted balms are being set up as possible dupes for the Fresh Sugar Lip Treatments.  I find that extremely hard to believe  because I love the Fresh Sugar Lippies and I have never had much luck with CoverGirl lip products.  But, I am all about tinted lip balms, so I certainly want to try them.  🙂  The CoverGirl Colorlicious Oh Sugar! Lip Balms retail for $8.99 at Ulta, which is a little steep for tinted lip balm from the drugstore.  Hopefully the formula makes up for the price tag.

Those are all the new products from the drugstore that have caught my eye recently.  More products are spilling in for 2016, so I am sure there are plenty of new arrivals that I may have missed.  Have you tried any of the new products that I listed here?  I’d love to get your thoughts.  Are there any products that I didn’t mention that you think I need to check out?  Let me know in the comments below.  What products are you most interested in trying for 2016?

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October 2015 Monthly Favorites

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October Favorites

October Favorites

I am finally back from my vacation and somewhat settled in.  I came down with a pretty bad head cold the last day of my trip that has moved into my chest, so I took a couple extra days to rest up.  I’m feeling better now, though, so it is time to get back to blogging.  Today I have my Monthly Favorites post for October.  For anyone new to the blog, Monthly Favorites are those products that particularly stood out to me, and ones that I reached for over and over throughout the month.  This is the second month in a row that didn’t have any fails (go me), so I am going to get right into my favorites because there are a lot of them.

Revlon Nearly Naked Powder & Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous Foundation

Revlon Nearly Naked Powder & Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous Foundation

It’s been a year, but I am bringing back my favorite foundation/powder combo, the Revlon Nearly Naked Powder & Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3-in-1 Foundation.  I was obsessed with both of these products toward the end of 2013 and all through 2014.  I used both products up completely (two of the foundation, actually) and decided to move on to other things over the last year.  With my Walt Disney World trip, however, I wanted to go back to this combo.  The Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous is really great and unique because it works equally well for those with oily or dry skin.  Very few products truly are for all skin types, but this foundation really is.  The foundation is mattifying, without drying out your skin or making it look dull or mask-like.  It has solid medium coverage, but is still lightweight and not cakey.  The best part is that it lasts all day long, even in the worst heat and humidity (hello Florida).  I definitely think that it is one of the best drugstore options for foundation and I really needed it during my Disney trip.  Revlon Nearly Naked is such a good pressed powder.  I love how lightweight it is, and the soft focus effect it gives to my skin is lovely.  It blurs the imperfections and makes me look younger.  Revlon Nearly Naked is (for me) the absolute best powder in the drugstore and I am so happy to have it again.  Florida was hot and sticky, and I felt like I was melting every single time I stepped out the door.  I got rained on and completely soaked on Splash Mountain, I was super sweaty the entire time, and I needed my makeup to survive extremely long days.  This combo lasted an impressively long time in a variety of challenging circumstances.  I have experimented with a lot of foundations and powders, and though I have liked some of them quite a bit, this combo is still what works best for me.

Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Banana

Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Banana

I’ve been meaning to mention this next product for a while because I have been using it off and on for the last several months. But October is when I really dug into my Ben Nye Banana Powder.  This is a cult favorite in the beauty community, and many of you have probably heard of it, if you don’t already own it yourself.  I really like the yellow tones in this powder to help combat my redness.  My skin tone is mostly neutral with some warm yellow undertones, so the banana powder works very well for me.  It is very finely milled and the powder gives me a smooth and brightened look that I enjoy.  Loose powder is not my favorite thing because it is such a mess, so this will never be my go-to setting powder, but I have been enjoying it.

Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette

Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette

My go-to blush product all month has been the Makeup Revolution Ultra Professional Blush Palette in Sugar and Spice.  There will be a full review for this product coming, so don’t worry.  In the meantime, I did swatch some of my favorite shades from the palette.  This was wonderful in Florida because I needed to be economical with my packing.  The palette is compact, but gave me the variety I wanted.  The blushes are pigmented, smooth, and last well on my skin.  For $10, you get six blush shades in varying finishes and two shimmer shades.  There is a similar palette in Hot Spice available, and I have enjoyed this one so much that I may have to pick up the other one too.  Seriously, get to Ulta and check this out.  I’ll try to get the review up soon.

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case

For eyes I have been loving my new Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case.  I did a full swatch fest, so click over to this post to see everything included in the case and swatches of all the products.  I don’t know what it is about this palette, but I am so inspired by these shadows.  I have been especially loving the navy blue and chrome shadows in that last column for a look that I don’t normally go for.  The shadows are great, and I definitely recommend the case, especially if you are Sephora VIB or VIB Rouge and can take advantage of the sale going on now.

Physicians Forumula Sexy Boost Cat Eyes Mascara

Physicians Formula Sexy Boost Cat Eyes Mascara

I will admit that I bought the Physicians Formula Sexy Boost Cat Eyes Mascara during Ulta’s 40% off sale because of the packaging.  Could this get any freaking cuter?  The red “lace” flocking and that shoe charm!  I mean, come on.  As it turns out, I really like the mascara.  I took a risk because I have not loved Physicians Formula mascaras in the past, but the Sexy Boost Cat Eyes Mascara gives me long flirty lashes.  It’s not the most volumizing, but it does give my wimpy lashes a nice boost and I am happy with it.

Makeup Forever Smoky Extravagant Mascara

Makeup Forever Smoky Extravagant Mascara

Speaking of mascara, I have been enjoying the Makeup Forever Smoky Extravagant Mascara.  I got this sample from Sephora at some point and finally pulled it out.  This was great in Florida.  It is really long-wearing and didn’t smudge on me, despite what I put it through.  Perhaps a little too long-wearing because it was a pain to remove at the end of the day, which is the only negative thing I have to say about it.  It gave me a ton of volume and I really like the formula.  I usually buy my mascaras at the drugstore, but if you go more on the higher end side for your lashes, the Makeup Forever Smoky Extravagant Mascara is a good choice.

Coastal Scents 4 Piece Interchangeable Palette

Coastal Scents 4 Piece Interchangeable Palette

The final Favorite product that I have to mention is, in some ways, something that I use everyday.  This is a Coastal Scents 4 Piece Interchangeable Palette that I created a while ago when I needed a new brow shadow.  I like the Coastal Scents Hot Pot in Timeless Taupe for my brow shade.  You can plug any of their Hot Pots into this magnetic palette, so I chose two brow shades (because I wasn’t sure which one I needed) and two pretty shades.  It’s these two bottom shades that I really want to talk about.  I used the heck out of them while I was at Disney World.  They were so handy for a pretty, but also very easy eye look.  The shades are: Gypsy Green– An opaque wash of verdant beauty with a slight satiny finish and Cherry Moss A reddish-brown hue with green iridescent shimmer.  They were perfect when I got lazy with my makeup, and I wore both shades so many times in October that I can’t even count them.  Coastal Scents Hot Pots are really inexpensive, but I think the formula is great.  They are a good size too.  Coastal Scents is an old favorite of mine.  If you haven’t tried them, you definitely should.

That’s it for my October Favorites.  I hope that you saw something that you liked.  What were some of your favorite items for October?  Let me know in the comments below.  My vacation was wonderful.  I had a blast, and I am so glad that we got the chance to go.  That being said, I am happy to be home.  The Holiday Season has hit early this year, and I am all for it.  I love the Holidays, so I am so excited.  There are so many great collections out for the Holidays.  I am going to have to really work on practicing restraint because at this point I want All-The-Things.  What Holiday products are you planning to pick up?  Are you hitting up the Sephora VIB sale?  Let me know what is on your wish list in the comments.

Big Sales at Ulta

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Ulta

Ulta

Ulta is going all full court press with the sales this week on drugstore items.  Free shipping, 40% off, and Buy 1 Get 1 sales are all happening through Saturday October 3rd.  (Omg, is it really October this week?  Where did September go?)  These sales are available in store and online.  If you plan it well, you can rack up some substantial savings.  And don’t forget that you can still use the $3.50 off of $10 coupons that Ulta always has as well as any manufacturers coupons that you may find.  So let’s take a look.

NYX Buy 2 Get 1

NYX Buy 2 Get 1

NYX is currently Buy 2 Get 1 Free.  Now would be a great time to try out the new Liquid Suede Cream Lipsticks or the new Slide-On Lip Pencils.  If you really want to expand your eyeshadow collection, the new(ish) Avant Pop and Go-To Palettes are included in the sale.  I really like NYX, and I think that they especially excel at lip and cheek products.  If you haven’t tried NYX blushes or lippies, then you need to give them a shot.  Also in NYX news (taking a time-out from Ulta for a minute) the first ever NYX store is opening up this weekend.  If you happen to live in Southern California, the grand opening starts 10/2 at the Santa Anita Mall.  More store openings to follow soon in Rancho Cucamonga, Torrence, Santa Clara, and Walnut Creek. Now, back to Ulta.

40% off

40% off

Right now Revlon, Physicians Formula, and Almay cosmetics are 40% off.  I am definitely going to have to pick up another Revlon Nearly Naked Pressed Powder.  I ran out a while back and really miss it.  If you are a fan of Physicians Formula you will certainly want to take advantage of this sale.  Physicians Formula is rather pricey for drugstore, and 40% off is a great deal.  Remember Ulta accepts Manufacturer’s coupons and you can use them in conjunction with the Ulta coupon.

China Glaze

China Glaze

China Glaze polishes are Buy 1 Get 1 Free.  China Glaze polishes are $7.50 each, so that’s quite a savings.  I really like the China Glaze formula and recommend hopping on this deal.

BCRF

BCRF

Also through 10/3, you will receive free shipping on all orders, when you add a $1 donation to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation to your cart.  There is no minimum required for the free shipping deal.  Once the donation is added to your cart, you will see that your shipping has changed to free.  There is also a link to donate more to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation if you would like.

It’s a good week to be an Ulta shopper.  Be sure to sign up for the Ulta rewards program if you haven’t already.  It is free to do so, and you earn points for any purchases made at Ulta that can be exchanged for cash toward an Ulta purchase.  I like to hoard my points and spend them on my birthday and during the Holidays.  It is a good way to bring the price down on those Holiday gifts and palettes that I always want.  There are also special coupons throughout the year for rewards members, and I think signing up for the program is absolutely worth it.  Do you plan on taking advantage of any of these sales this week?  Let me know in the comments below.

Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup

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Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup

Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup

Today I would like to review Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup, as requested by my sister.  I’ve been interested in this foundation since it came out about a year ago, but hadn’t gotten around to trying it until now.  Here is what Revlon says about the product: “Inspired by the latest advances in anti-aging, this all-in-one formula combines Hyaluronic acid, our Exclusive Triple Lift Complex, and moisturizing ingredients. Relax the look of expression lines, smooth skin, and boost hydration 3X for a rejuvenated look.”  Let’s take a closer look.

Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup

Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup

Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup comes in a glass bottle and is 1 fl oz of product.  It has a pump style applicator, which is my personal preference.  As far as the formula is concerned, I am of two minds.  On one hand, the formula has some major problems, but under certain circumstances I do actually really like the look of Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup.  In general, though, it may be more trouble than it’s worth.  Although Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup is targeted toward aging skin, the formula does not handle skin imperfection well at all.  I am specifically talking about textural issues.  If you have smooth, evenly textured skin then you should have no problem getting a lovely smooth finish with Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup.  However, if you have large pores, fine lines, acne scars, bumps or divots then you will want to stay away.  When I was in NC last month, I had an allergic reaction that caused me to break out into tiny bumps all over the lower part of my face and my neck.  They weren’t red or very big, so they weren’t too terribly noticeable unless you were up close.  That is, until I put on Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup and suddenly it looked like I had a neon sign to proclaim my problem skin to the world.  It looked horrible.  I had to wash it off and apply  a different foundation instead.  (L’Oreal Infallible Pro Matte, incidentally, and it looked wonderful.)  A really good pore filling primer can help, but Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup definitely emphasizes problems with skin texture.  As far as coverage is concerned, Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup is light/medium coverage.  There is definitely some decent coverage with one layer of foundation, which is good because Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup does not build very well at all.  Most of you know by now that I have mild rosacea, so redness is a big issue for me (though I’m getting better, yay).  I usually use two layers of any foundation, unless it is a thick full-coverage foundation.  I tried that with Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup and found that it cakes up very quickly.  It tries to stick to the previous layer, so instead of blending out it turns a bit patchy.

I know what you are thinking.  Why, if Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup has such a problematic formula, did I say that I am of two minds?  The thing is that on a good skin day with even texture and not a lot of redness, Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup looks beautiful on the skin.  One layer of the foundation looks very natural.  It evens out my skin tone, while still allowing freckles to show through.  It doesn’t dry my skin out, and lasts a surprisingly long time for this kind of foundation.  The finish isn’t too dewy or too mate.  It works really well on me for a lighter makeup day.  So, although there are a lot of issues with the formula, there is some good mixed in there as well.

Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup in Bare Buff and Tender Beige

Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup in Bare Buff and Tender Beige

There are 12 shades in the Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup range.  I am usually the 2nd or 3rd shade in a range, so I tried them both.  Pictured above, I have shade 10 Bare Buff on the left, and shade 20 Tender Beige on the right.  Bare Buff was too light for me and made me look ghostly pale, so if you have NC20 skin, Tender Beige may be a better choice for you.  It also has a bit more yellow in it, which I prefer.  I have seen Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup priced as high as $15.49 at Walgreens and CVS.  It retails for less at places like Target, Walmart and drugstore.com.  I’m just going to put it out there, don’t pay $15+ for a drugstore foundation.  It is a ridiculous price, and Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup is absolutely not worth it.  I haven’t seen any anti-aging benefits since I began using it.  At the end of the day, if you combine the high price tag and the problematic formula, Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup is a dud.  I can’t recommend it.  That being said, there are some circumstances where Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup is nice.  If you have really good skin anyway, and like a comfortable formula with decent coverage, you may like Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup.  I am going to keep Revlon Age Defying Firming+Lifting Makeup in my collection for those good skin days, but it probably won’t be in my regular rotation.

14 Best of 2014

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Best of 2014

Best of 2014

It is time for my wrap up of the products that I liked best in 2014.  These are products that didn’t necessarily come out in 2014, but that I loved and used in 2014.  It’s basically my most favorite of all my favorite products for the year.  If you have been paying attention over the last year, all of these products should be familiar to you.  I have mentioned all of them in at least one “Favorites” post, though I do try not to be too repetitive in those posts as much as possible.  These are definitely the products that I have been reaching for throughout the year, so let me get started.

Derma MD Copper CoQ10 Moisturizer

Derma MD Copper CoQ10 Moisturizer

First up, let’s talk skincare.  In 2014 I discovered Derma MD when they sent me several products for review.  The product that I have loved most from the brand is the Derma MD Copper CoQ10 Moisturizer.  This is my third bottle, and I am sure that I will continue to use the Copper CoQ10 for a while.  It has helped reduce my redness so much, which is my number one skin concern.  I love the moisturizer because it is not greasy or oily in the slightest, but delivers a ton of hydration that lasts for hours.  It is extremely lightweight and absorbs into the skin so easily that you don’t even notice it.  I think that it would be appropriate for all skin types, oily or dry.  It is a great product, and I recommend it to anyone.  Derma MD is often featured on sites like Hautelook and Rue La La to cut the cost by a significant amount.  I also have a 50% off promo code at dermamdskincare.com for my readers.  Enter code beautybudget at check out to receive the discount.

The Body Shop Honemania

The Body Shop Honeymania

Moving away from the face to the body is the Honeymania scent from The Body Shop.  I love this scent so much.  I have body butter, lip butter, and shower gel in Honeymania.  It smells like honey and wild flowers, and is just a gorgeous fresh scent.  I actually prefer the formula of the body butter more from The Body Shop than from Bath & Body Works.  It is less greasy and absorbs into the skin better.  Honestly though, I almost don’t care what product it is as long as it is in the Honeymania scent.  😉

Coastal Scents Bionic Flat Top Buffer

Coastal Scents Bionic Flat Top Buffer

Moving on to tools, the Coastal Scents Bionic Flat Top Buffer is a dead-on dupe for the Sigma F80, but for a fraction of the cost.  This is my favorite style of brush for blending in foundation.  I have a review for all of the details about how the brush performs.  The bristles are soft and densely packed, making it a fantastic foundation brush because it feels comfortable on the skin and blends everything out easily and evenly.  The handle is shorter than most, so the brush fits much easier into makeup bags than similar brushes.  I have washed it countless times, and have had no issues with shedding or bleeding.  The Bionic Flat Top Buffer is very well made and a high quality brush.  If you are considering getting the F80 you should consider this one first.

Sigma E-36 Blending Brush

Sigma E36 Blending Brush

One brush from Sigma that is 100% worth the hype and the money is the Sigma E36 Blending Brush.  This brush is essential for me.  I have hooded lids that aren’t too big, and this brush fits in the cease perfectly.  I can lay down dark crease shades without them getting out of control and taking over my look.  The E36 is very thin and has long, slightly firm bristles.  The small fluffy brush is just perfect for precision blending and I use it all the time.  It may be too small for those with really large eyes, but it’s so perfect for me.

Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous Foundation & Revlon Nearly Naked Powder

Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous Foundation & Revlon Nearly Naked Powder

When it comes to face makeup, my foundation and powder are repeat favorites that I had from last year.  I am combining them and only counting them as one because it is the pair of products used together that is my true favorite.  I am talking about the Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3-in-1 Foundation and the Revlon Nearly Naked Pressed Powder, both of which have me scraping the bottom to get the last bit.  The Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous is really great and unique because it works equally well for those with oily or dry skin.  Very few products truly are for all skin types, but this foundation really is.  CoverGirl Outlast Stay Fabulous is mattifying, without drying out your skin.  It has solid medium coverage, but is still lightweight and not cakey.  The best part is that it lasts all day long, even in the worst heat and humidity.  I definitely think that it is one of the best drugstore options for foundation.  Revlon Nearly Naked Pressed Powder is such a good product that if you haven’t tried it yet, you absolutely must.  I love how light it is, and the soft focus effect it gives to my skin is lovely.  It blurs the imperfections and makes me look younger.  Revlon Nearly Naked is (for me) the absolute best powder in the drugstore and definitely one that I will repurchase.  It’s tough for me to use up products all the way because I have so much makeup to choose from.  It says a lot that both of these products are basically empty.  I highly recommend them both.

Coastal Scents Forever Blush in Poetic

Coastal Scents Forever Blush in Poetic

Hopefully you aren’t sick of me talking about the Coastal Scents Forever Blush in Poetic, because it was definitely a major favorite for me this past year.  Poetic is a warm, nude peach with a satin finish that looks good for any occasion and on many different skin tones.  The Forever Blush formula is so great in general.  The blushes apply smoothly and evenly, and they have great pigmentation and staying power. You can read my full review to see swatches and get more details on the Forever Blushes.  Poetic is my favorite, though, because it is such a universally flattering shade.  I strongly recommend that you check it out.

Maybelline Master Hi-Light blush in Mauve

Maybelline Master Hi-Light blush in Mauve

I haven’t mentioned the Maybelline Master Hi-Light blush in Mauve since the Spring, but that doesn’t mean that I haven’t been using it.  It is such a beautiful shade, and it wears really well.  Mauve has definitely become one of my favorite blushes, especially when I want to skip highlighter and use a blush with some shimmer.  It is sort of a plum toned rose-gold shade that is different than any other shade I have in my collection.  The shimmer particles are finely milled and do not look chunky or glittery.  It gives me a lovely sheen and looks great.  A little goes a really long way, so I’ll have this blush for a long time.  I really love it.

Lorac Pro Palette 2

Lorac Pro Palette 2

There is no way that I can talk about my favorite products of 2014 without mentioning the Lorac Pro Palette 2.  It is probably my favorite palette of all of the palettes that I own, which says a lot because I have so many of them.  For me, the Lorac Pro 2 has such a perfect mix of shades that I can easily come up with dozens of looks that are beautiful and distinct without having to think too much about it.  I love that, unlike the Naked palettes, there are plenty of matte shades as well as the shimmers for looks that have more complexity and that wear better on aging eyes.  The neutral everyday shades are appropriate for any situation, and the few colorful shades add some whimsy and set the Lorac Pro 2 apart from most other neutral palettes.  The mix of warm and cool tones makes the palette universally flattering and a good choice for anyone.  All the shades have great pigmentation and blend very well with each other without getting muddy.  I personally don’t need primer when I use LORAC shadows to get crease-free wear that lasts all day.  I can not recommend this palette enough.  Feel free to read my full review of the Lorac Pro 2 with swatches for more information on the palette.

bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow

bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow

In 2014 I discovered bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow and have been so impressed.  I don’t know why it took me so long to try bareMinerals, but I have really been enjoying the brand.  I first tried a mini bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow 2.0 in “The Epiphany” that I got in a kit over the Holidays last year.  I could not get enough of the creamy, silky formula.  I reach for that duo all the time.  Next, I purchased the bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow 4.0 in “The Soundrack” and that same buttery texture had me hooked.  The shadows feel so luxe and expensive on the skin- a real high quality experience.  My most recent bareMinerals purchase is the READY Eyeshadow 4.0 in “The Happy Place” that was just delivered a week or so ago.  It is absolutely gorgeous, and I can’t wait to play some more with it.  BareMinerals READY Eyeshadows are a little pricey, but they are worth it in my opinion.

e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin Chic

e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin Chic

How many times have I talked about e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin Chic this last year?  I have enjoyed the Smudge Pots in general, but Cruisin Chic is the number one “must-have” of the bunch.  The gel formula doesn’t crease, but also doesn’t dry out my lids.  It is lightweight and hardly noticeable.  It lasts all day long without fading.  And the best part is that the e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin Chic is only $3 (e.l.f. recently raised their prices).  Be sure to check out my review of the Smudge Pots.  Cruisin Chic is gorgeous brown-based metallic taupe.  It is a great everyday option that looks so multidimensional that I can get away with wearing it all by itself, but it still looks like I put way more effort into the look.  It couldn’t be easier to apply with either a brush or your fingers.  I can’t think of a single reason why you shouldn’t get it.  Trust me, you need this in your life.

Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment

Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment

Another products that should be no surprise to find in my Best of 2014 roundup are the Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatments.  Though I had tried them before this last year, I became obsessed with them in 2014.  I love the way that they make my lips feel.  The Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatments are so hydrating and have a beautiful sheer wash of color that looks so natural and pretty.  My two favorite shades out of the line are Sugar Rose and Sugar Berry.  Sugar Rose is very sheer, but still gives my lips some life.  The look is almost like my lips have a fresh kiss blush that is quite attractive.  Sugar Berry is a plum-toned berry shade that has still has decent pigmentation, despite being a sheer balm.  It is what I wear when I want color on my lips, but still want my lips to look natural.  I have really fallen for the Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment line.  They are definitely a splurge, but I really think that they are worth a go.

Nivea Kiss of... Lip Care

Nivea Kiss of… Lip Care

My other lip love of 2014 is much more affordable, but just as wonderful.  I am addicted to the Nivea Kiss of Milk and Honey and Nivea Kiss of Olive Oil & Lemon lip balms.  I am a lip balm junkie, and I continue to try new lip balms when I get them in Ipsy bags or something like that, but I keep coming back to Nivea.  These balms are so extremely hydrating.  I have really dry lips, and am constantly re-applying my lip products.  The Nivea balms last longer than most, and the formula is lightweight and silky without being greasy or waxy.  They have no noticeable taste, and the pleasant scent is extremely subtle and only lasts during application.  They are fantastic, and I can’t live without them.

Born Pretty Store Water Decals

Born Pretty Store Water Decals

One of my favorite new discoveries from 2014 are the Water Decals that I’ve been getting from the Born Pretty Store.  I had never heard of water decals before Born Pretty contacted me.  There was a steep learning curve for figuring out how to use water decals, and the first two attempts were somewhat painstaking.  By my third try, however, I had my technique down and they were easy as pie.  I absolutely love how professional water decals make my nails look.  I don’t go to the salon to get manicures, and I have extremely limited talent when it comes to nail art.  Let’s be honest, I can barely paint my nails without making a mess.  But the water decals make my clumsy efforts look expertly executed.  They are basically a temporary tattoo for nails, and (once you get the hang of it) really easy to use.  I have gotten all of my water decals from the Born Pretty Store, so you can either type “water decals” in the search box or just click the Born Pretty category on the right hand side of the page for a closer look at the manicures that I have come up with using water decals.  They are really fun and my new favorite way to do nail art.

Giorgio Armani Acqua di Gioia fragrance

Giorgio Armani Acqua di Gioia fragrance

Finally, my favorite fragrance has been Giorgio Armani Acqua di Gioia.  Oh my god, you guys, it smells so good!   Acqua di Gioia is a fresh, clean aquatic scent, with light citrus and floral notes.  It instantly transports me to a villa in the Mediterranean, and I can’t get enough of it.  The image in my head when I smell Acqua di Gioia is of clean blue water and fluffy white towels.  The name means “water of joy” and I can’t think of a better and more accurate name for the scent.  My husband also loves it and always compliments me when I wear it.  In fact, he liked it so much he picked up the men’s version for himself.  You have to smell Acqua di Gioia, if you haven’t already.  It is truly lovely.

And that completes my Best of 2014 post.  These posts are hard to do because I have used so many great products over the year.  I do think that I was able to round up the best of the best, so to speak.  These are the products that have gotten the most love over the year and that I would recommend the most to you.  I hope that you saw something that you like.  Let me know what your favorite products have been throughout 2014.  Are there items that I really need to try?  Tell me about them in the comments below.

Monthly Favorites: November and December 2014

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November and December Monthly Favorites 2014

November and December Monthly Favorites 2014

It’s the end of the month, which means that it is Monthly favorites time.  Today I have my monthly favorites for November and December.  I didn’t get the chance to do my favorites for November because I was driving cross-country for the move, so this time around you get my favorites for both months.  For anyone new to the blog, Monthly Favorites are those products that particularly stood out to me and ones that I reached for over and over throughout the month.  Since most of my makeup was packed away in a box (only two casualties in the move, and both were inexpensive products that will be easy to replace) I used pretty much the same products for most of November and December anyway, so it works out that I am combing the two months.  I have finally been able to unpack my makeup and can get some variety again, but for the move I relied on some old reliables that I knew I could depend on with a few new favorites thrown in.  So, let’s get into it.

Lorac Pro 2 palette

Lorac Pro 2 palette

First off, the one product that has been a super star for me over the last two months is the Lorac Pro 2 palette.  I love this palette.  It is seriously one of the smartest buys that I have made.  I can get so many different looks out of it for both everyday and special occasion.  The entire top row of shadows are matte shades and the bottom row are satins and shimmers for 16 shades total.  There are plenty of neutral shades, but there are also the Plum, Navy, and Jade shades for a pop of color.  I think that it is so versatile.  They are a great range of shades from light to dark and with both cool and warm tones to suit a variety of people.  The formula is great, and I have gotten so much use out of this palette over the last few months.  You can read my full review of the palette and see swatches by clicking this link.  I strongly recommend taking a look at the Lorac Pro 2, if you haven’t already.

Coastal Scents Hot Pot in Timeless Taupe

Coastal Scents Hot Pot in Timeless Taupe

I don’t remember if I have mentioned the brow product that I’ve been using for the last several months, but I have been really been enjoying the Coastal Scents Hot Pot in Timeless Taupe.  My brows are practically non-existent, so I find that a powder gives me the fullest coverage while still looking the most natural.  I found Timeless Taupe over the summer, and it is a great match for my coloring.  It is a great neutral shade, neither too warm nor too gray.  Coastal Scents describes it as “An antique brownish-grey hue with a matte finish”.  Coastal Scents sells a 4 Piece Interchangeable Palette that you can plug any Hot Pots into, as well as a 4-pan magnetic palette designed specifically for brows that includes Timeless Taupe.  I have no issues with fading or smudging with the Coastal Scents Hot Pots, so I definitely recommend them, especially at under $2 each.  (Don’t forget, there is still time to take advantage of the 40% off sale at coastalscents.com, through 12/31.)

Gold Eyeliner

Gold Eyeliner

For a fun pop of color and some instant drama, I have been using a gold liner on my bottom lash line.  Gold goes with a variety of eye looks, and such a small thing adds so much whimsy to your look.  The liner that I’ve been using is Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil in El Dorado.  I picked up one of the last ones that UD had on super sale well after they changed the formula, so El Dorado isn’t available anymore.  However, any bright metallic gold liner would work for the look.  I have been enjoying it for Holiday looks throughout December, but it would also be great for New Year’s Eve.

e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin’ Chic

e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin’ Chic

On days that I have been rushed to run out the door, or days when I wanted low-key makeup to simply wake my face up a bit, I’ve still been reaching for my e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin’ Chic.  It is such a simple “one and done” makeup product.  I don’t even need an eyeshadow brush.  I can simply apply it on the lid with my fingers and be done.  Cruisin’ Chic is a gorgeous metallic taupe shade with a ton of dimension and life, so I really can leave it to stand on it’s own.  The Smudge Pots are only $3 each, and e.l.f. is constantly running a sale, so there really is no reason not to pick Cruisin’ Chic up.  It’s worth it.

Coastal Scents Forever Blush in Poetic

For blush, I needed something that would work well with pretty much any look from a barely there makeup day to Holiday makeup.  I chose Coastal Scents Forever Blush in Poetic.  Poetic is a warm, nude peach with a satin finish that looks good for any occasion.  I have raved about the Forever Blush formula before, so I won’t go into too much detail.  It applies smoothly, and the blushes have great pigmentation and staying power. You can read my full review to see swatches and get more details on the Forever Blushes.  Poetic is such a universally flattering shade, that I strongly recommend it.

Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment in Sugar Berry

Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment in Sugar Berry

On my lips I have been leaning toward reds and berries.  One product that I can’t get enough of right now is my Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment in Sugar Berry that I got in the Fresh Sugar Lip Legends Holiday Set.  For a reminder of what the set looked like and swatches of 7 of the Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment line, refer back to this post.  Sugar Berry is a sheer, plum-toned berry shade.  The Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatments feel so good on the lips and add so much moisture.  I love the formula and Sugar Berry is a beautiful color for this time of year.  I am a fan of the whole Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment line, and though it is a splurge, I recommend that you treat yourself.

Red Lips

Red Lips

Finally, what would the Holiday Season be without a red lip, right?  My favorite red lip these days is achieved with Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in Standout.  It is a gorgeous Christmas red that is opaque and very pigmented.  I was a little wary of the Matte Balms at first because I have dry lips, but the formula is comfortable on the lips and doesn’t accentuate dryness or lines like other matte lips products can do.  Standout has great staying power, and is just a really beautiful red lip.  When I want a little shine, I have been reaching for the NYX Butter Gloss in Red Velvet.  It does not have the staying power that Standout has, so you will need to re-apply throughout the night, but Red Velvet gives you an absolutely stunning red lip.  I personally have not had any issues with the the shade feathering or transferring to my teeth, but I have worn it with a lip liner, and that usually keeps those types of issues at bay.  I recommend both products for lovely bold red lips.

Swatches

Swatches

And here is a swatch of the color cosmetics, minus El Dorado because it’s not available.  The top row from left to right is Coastal Scents Hot Pot in Timeless Taupe, e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin’ Chic, and Coastal Scents Forever Blush in Poetic.  The bottom row from left to right is Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment in Sugar Berry, Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in Standout, and NYX Butter Gloss in Red Velvet.

I don’t know about you, but I am ready for 2014 to be over and for 2015 to kick off.  I have high hopes for the coming year.  My main goal for 2014 was to get back to California, and though it took all year, that has finally been accomplished.  I am very glad that the move is over, and now it’s just a matter of unpacking and trying to settle into a new life here.  It may take a little bit to find my groove in my new surroundings, but I will get there.  It was a long and difficult journey to get to California, but it was absolutely worth it and I couldn’t be happier.  I have new projects to look forward to and, honestly, I have no idea what to expect from 2015, but I am excited to see what life brings me.  I hope that you are also looking forward to the New Year and that 2015 brings you everything that you are hoping for.

 

Monthly Favorites October 2014

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Monthly Favorites October 2014

Monthly Favorites October 2014

Happy Halloween!  It’s the last day of the month, so you know what that means.  It’s Monthly Favorites time!  For those of you who are new to the blog, Monthly Favorites are those products that particularly stood out to me and ones that I reached for over and over throughout the month.  This month was a little different in that I seemed to be really focused on my higher-end products.  Usually my favorites are mostly drugstore, with maybe one higher-end thrown in, but not so this month.  Also, I’m sorry the lighting is a little funky in these pictures.  I was racing the setting sun.  Most of my looks this month were very warm, with a lot of Fall colors involved.  I love greens, golds, taupes and browns, and this time of year I take any excuse to wear them.  But enough yammering, let’s get into the products.

Revlon Photoready Color Correcting Primer

Revlon Photoready Color Correcting Primer

I went back to my Revlon Photoready Color Correcting Primer this month.  I forgot how much I enjoy it.  The formula dries down to a satiny finish that offers a bit of hydration, without getting oily.  It feels lightweight and wears comfortably.  My makeup blends over it very easily and evenly, and I love the soft-focus look it gives the skin.  It doesn’t actually color-correct, but it diminishes the look of fine lines and pores, and even fuzzes out my freckles a bit.  My skin looks younger and more even with Revlon Photoready Color Correcting Primer.  Silicon-based primers are still my favorite, but this one is a great alternative.

It Cosmetics Bye-Bye Redness

It Cosmetics Bye-Bye Redness

I am not sure if I mentioned It Cosmetics Bye-Bye Redness here on the blog before.  As you know if you have been reading along for awhile, I have mild rosacea and redness is a big issue for me.  Bye-Bye Redness really helps to cover it up.  Here is Ulta’s description of the product: “What is it: Bye Bye Redness Correcting Creme is a red neutralizing and correcting cream that completely cancels redness in your skin from view. Rich in peptides, hydrolyzed collagen and anti-aging technology, Bye Bye Redness Correcting Creme camouflages redness and any red-toned skin discolorations from rosacea, broken capillaries, blemished skin, irritated skin, sun damage, scars, age spots, physician procedures and more! Bye Bye Redness Correcting Creme gives perfect coverage that will never crease or crack and is designed to not only cover, but to make you skin appear supple and flawless!”  I have been using this as a base under my lighter coverage foundations.  With the move coming up, I’ve been trying to use up as many products as I can so I don’t have to lug them cross-country.  My light coverage foundations don’t get a lot of love because I usually need more than that, but with It Cosmetics Bye-Bye Redness as a base, I can use foundations that wouldn’t otherwise work for me without crazy layering.  One layer of It Cosmetics Bye-Bye Redness and one layer of foundation looks great, covers my redness, and no cake face.  A little goes a long way, so even though the jar is small, you barely need any product to cover your whole face.  The only down side is that it only comes in one shade, so if you are too far out of the range of that shade, even as a base it probably wouldn’t work for you.  But if you do fit into the shade range, it’s a great product.

bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow 4.0 in “The Soundrack”

bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow 4.0 in “The Soundrack”

I have really been enjoying my bareMineral eyeshadow this month, especially the bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow 4.0 in “The Soundrack”.  This quad is so me.   I love greens and golds, and it is so beautiful for Fall.  These shadows feel like butter and blend so easily and smoothly.  They have a luxe feel on the skin, more so that Urban Decay, Lorac, or other brands that I have tried at a similar price point.  I haven’t tried true high-end eye shadows (Dior, Guerlain, Givenchy, etc.), but I wonder if these bareMinerals READY Eyeshadows are just as good.  I don’t know, but I can say that they have a truly wonderful formula and I really recommend trying bareMinerals shadow if you haven’t already.

e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin Chic

e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin’ Chic

On the complete other end of the spectrum is the e.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin’ Chic.  I really like this product, and have loved quick and easy applications when I need to run out the door.  It’s really a one and done shade, where you can just apply this shadow and that’s it.  It reflects light in such a way that it has dimension on the eye, without needing assistance.  I have simply applied it with my fingers, slapped on some liner and mascara and was good to go on more than one occasion this month.  The best part is how incredibly cheap it is while still being this good.  Even though e.l.f recently raised their prices, the Smudge Pots are only $3.  You need this in your life.

Bite Beauty mini High Pigment Matte Pencil in Rhubarb

Bite Beauty mini High Pigment Matte Pencil in Rhubarb

Next up is my Bite Beauty mini High Pigment Matte Pencil in Rhubarb.  This was actually part of a Holiday set that I got last Christmas from Sephora.  You can read my review of the Best Bite Set here.  Bite Beauty uses food-grade ingredients and avoids synthetic chemicals, so their products are safe and of good quality.  Rhubarb is a dark, warm-toned, rosy mauve shade.  It is right up my alley.  The formula is creamy and it does not migrate or sink into fine lines.  I have been wearing Rhubarb a lot, and really like it.  If you are interested, Bite Beauty has a similar set available for this Holiday season at Sephora.  It is called the Best Bite Remix, and Rhubarb is part of that set too.

 

Bath & Body Works Twilight Woods

Bath & Body Works Twilight Woods

I have been loving Bath & Body Works Twilight Woods scented lotion.  I am not good at explaining fragrances, so here is what B&BW says: “The warmth and mystery of enchanted woods with an enticing blend of apricot nectar, mimosa petals & Tuscan cypress.”  All I know is that it smells so delicious.  It’s a little sweet, but not cloying.  It’s exotic, but not overly musky.  It’s feminine, but not girly (if you know what I mean).  It’s sophisticated, but not a grandma type scent.  It’s just really good, and my husband loves it too.  He always compliments me when I am wearing it.

swatches

swatches

Here are some swatches of the color cosmetics.  E.l.f. Essential Smudge Pot in Cruisin’ Chic is on the top, Bite Beauty mini High Pigment Matte Pencil in Rhubarb is in the middle, and bareMinerals READY Eyeshadow 4.0 in “The Soundrack” is on the bottom.  Hopefully you saw something that you liked and that sparked your interest.  But wait, there’s more.  I also have a non-beauty favorite for October, though it isn’t very seasonally appropriate.

 

Pineapple Kona Pop tea from Teavanna

Pineapple Kona Pop tea from Teavanna

My final favorite of the month is a lifestyle favorite.  I have been absolutely addicted to the Pineapple Kona Pop tea from Teavanna.  Oh my gosh you guys, it’s AMAZING!!!  Here is what Teavanna says about it: “Prepare to receive the royal pineapple treatment. The mainland melts away as the warmth of pineapple sunshine filters through a canopy of fragrant orange blossoms. You’re on island time now.”  The herbal tea has Pineapple and citrus infusion with light floral undertones.  It tastes like pineapple juice and iced tea had a love child.  It is so good.  I have only tried it iced, so I don’t know how well it would work as a hot tea because I am not fond of warm pineapple.  But if you like iced tea, you have to give this a try.

That’s it.  Let me know what your favorites for October were in the comments below.  We are moving in less that a month, and I am kind of freaking out.  I am over-the-moon excited, but also really stressed and overwhelmed by the amount of work I have to do.  I’m sorry that I couldn’t get any of my planned Halloween tutorials up.  Tutorials take a long time to photograph, and I just couldn’t fit it in.  I will be posting as often as I can, but I’m not sure what that’s going to look like yet.  I am also not sure how long I will be without internet when I move.  I will let you know when I know.  In the meantime, have a great time celebrating Halloween tonight!  Have fun and stay safe.