Category Archives: Tools and Accessories

Target Up & Up Concealer Brush Duo

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Target Up & Up Concealer Brush Duo

Target Up & Up Concealer Brush Duo

I have a neat little concealer brush duo from Target to show you today.  This is the Target Up & Up brand Concealer Brush Duo.  I have an eyeshadow blending brush from the Up & Up brand that I really like, so I decided to give these concealer brushes a try to see if the quality continues to impress.  I have been tempted by the Sigma P82 Precision Round and P84 Precision Angled brushes, but could never justify the $19 (each) price tag.  The concealer brush that I currently use has longer bristles for a completely different shape.  The Target Up & Up Concealer Brush Duo is only $5.99 for the set, so I figured that I could try this shape out without too much investment.  I’m glad that I did.

Target Up & Up Concealer Brush Duo

Target Up & Up Concealer Brush Duo

These Up & Up Concealer brushes come with a rounded tip brush head and an angled tip brush head.  Here is what Target has to say about the brushes: “Use this uniquely designed up & up concealer duo for smooth, precise application of liquid, cream, or powder concealer. The rounded brush tip allows you to target small areas, including around the nose and over blemishes, while the angled brush tip allows you to target angled areas around the eyes for complete coverage.”  Both brushes are dense and have very soft bristles.  They don’t feel scratchy and the don’t poke the delicate skin under the eyes.  These are very inexpensive brushes, but the quality is much higher than the low price wold have you believe.

Angled brush tip

Angled brush tip

As recommended, I use the angled brush for under eye concealer.  It does a good job of blending out my concealer and leaving my under eye area smooth.  It is also precise enough to get right up to the lash line without getting concealer in my eye.  It’s a great brush.

Rounded brush tip

Rounded brush tip

I like the rounded brush for spot concealing.  I also use it after I put on my foundation to make sure that I don’t have any product build up in the creases of my nose or around my mouth.  Both brushes are pretty small, so they do a really good job at getting into those hard to reach areas.

I don’t own the Sigma P82 or the P84, so I can’t honestly say how these compare in quality or function.  I can say, however, that now that I have these Up & Up brushes I don’t feel like I need to get the Sigma brushes.  They are exactly what I was looking for.  They perform very well, and they have stood up to washing without shedding or losing their shape.  These are good brushes, especially when you consider the $5.99 price tag for the set.  I definitely recommend checking out the Target Up & Up brand Concealer Brush Duo next time you find yourself in Target.

Beauty and the Beast Themed Bags from SOHO Beauty

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Belle from Beauty and the Beast

Belle from Beauty and the Beast

Continuing on with Disney collections, SOHO Beauty now has line of makeup bags featuring Belle from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.  Belle is one of my favorite Disney Princesses, so I am happy to see her featured.  According to SOHO Beauty, “This collection blends the romance of Beauty and the Beast with functional design to make your fairy tale dreams come true.”  There are four new bags in the collection, and are available at drugstore.com, walgreens.com, and Walgreens locations.  The styles are a little bit different than past Disney princess collabs, but not by much.  Three out of the four bags have rose and gold theming, the wristlet being the one exception.  Unlike the previous Frozen collection of bags, SOHO has varied the images so that it is conceivable to want to collect the whole set.  The different style options (taken from drugstore.com) are:

  • SOHO Disney Belle Wristlet- $7.99
  • SOHO Disney Belle Organizer- $9.99
  • SOHO Disney Belle 2-Peice Clutch Set- $9.99
  • SOHO Disney Belle Train Case- $11.99
SOHO Disney Belle Wristlet

SOHO Disney Belle Wristlet

SOHO Disney Belle Organizer

SOHO Disney Belle Organizer

SOHO Disney Belle 2-Peice Clutch Set

SOHO Disney Belle 2-Peice Clutch Set

SOHO Disney Belle Train Case

SOHO Disney Belle Train Case

And of course there is a correlating Belle makeup line that has been released from e.l.f., just like with previous princesses.  I know that it has popped up in certain Walgreens stores, but the makeup is not yet available at walgreens.com or drugstore.com.  This time the collection includes Orly brand nail polish and lip balm from a brand called Townly.  I’ll be sure to post about them when they pop up online, or I spot them in my local Walgreens.  What do you think of the Belle collection?  Do any of these bags tempt you?  Have you purchased any of the SOHO Disney bags from past collections?  Let’s discuss in the comments below.

 

Beauty Quickie: L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray

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BeautyQuickiegreen

I have a Beauty Quickie for you today.  Let’s talk about the L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray.  For those who haven’t seen my Beauty Quickies before, they are shorter product reviews that I usually do.  It’s kind of a down and dirty look at the product.  The setting sprays that I enjoy the most are the Urban Decay All Nighter and NYX Dewy Finish Makeup Setting Spray.  They both perform very well.  I was really curious to see how L’Oreal’s version stands up, especially with a $16 price tag, a bit much for the drugstore.

L'Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray

L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray

Here is the blurb from L’Oreal: “Keep your makeup looking fresh hours after application: no melting, fading or touch-ups necessary. This lightweight, oil free setting spray locks in your total makeup look, Face, Eyes, and Lips, preventing color from smudging or settling into fine lines for all-day staying power.”  I have dry skin, so I usually don’t have too many issues with fading throughout the day.  My main reason for using a setting spray is to get rid of that powdery look when I am finished with my makeup.  But I did put Infallible Pro-Spray & Set to the test on long days in warm weather.  I tried it over several foundations, and to be honest, I didn’t see much of a difference in how my makeup wore.  I tried to give Infallible Pro-Spray & Set the benefit of the doubt, but it just didn’t seem to do anything.

L'Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray

L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray

In addition to the lackluster performance, I have two major complaints with Infallible Pro-Spray & Set.  The first is that the spray comes out a little too hard for my taste.  I use the recommended T and X motion to evenly distribute the mist, but it sprays too much.  My face ends up feeling too wet and a little sticky.  The other major complaint that I have for the Infallible Pro-Spray & Set is its horrible smell.  My husband says that it smells like glue.  I think it smells like cheap generic lotion from the 80’s.  It’s sort of a powdery, chemical, perfumy smell.  It is so gross, and not something I want on my face (or anywhere else).  L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray has gotten some great reviews online, but for me it is a total dud.  Save your $16, and put it towards the $30 Urban Decay All Nighter setting spray, or even better, spend $7.99 on the NYX Dewy Finish Makeup Setting Spray and get some Starbucks with the rest.

Monthly Favorites and Fails, March 2015

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March 2015 Monthly Favorites

March 2015 Monthly Favorites

It’s Monthly Favorites time, better late than never.  Thank you for your well-wishes while I was sick.  I was pretty bad off all week with that stomach flu, but I feel much better now.  Almost completely back to normal.  I thought about skipping Favorites for March since it is so late in the month, but I really like Favorites posts.  Besides, I’ve been testing new products that I haven’t gotten a chance to review yet.  I really want to at least mention a couple of them because there are so many drugstore brand sales this week.  So, even though it is almost half way through April, I am going to talk about my favorites from March.

L'Oreal Infallible Pro Matte Foundation

L’Oreal Infallible Pro Matte Foundation

My first favorite is one that I haven’t gotten a chance to review yet, but that I have been really liking.  It’s the new L’Oreal Infallible Pro Matte Foundation.  I am surprised my how much I like this foundation.  I have dry skin, so I was expecting that it would be too dry for me, but it isn’t as long as I use a good primer underneath.  L’Oreal Infallible Pro Matte has an extremely lightweight formula.  It does not have a full matte finish, but more of a demi-matte finish that keeps some of the life in your skin which is probably why I can get away with using it.  The foundation lasts all day on me, even long days outside like at Disneyland.  I will do a full review soon, but in the mean time, know that L’Oreal Infallible Pro Matte Foundation is a keeper.

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara

Another product that I haven’t gotten the chance to review yet is the Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara.  Here is the blurb from Maybelline: “Lash Sensational Waterproof Mascara is the first patented fanning brush with 10 layers of bristles to reveal a full flourish of lashes. Liquid Ink formula coats from all sides for a sensational full fan effect.”  I love how my lashes look with this mascara.  The “full fan effect” is no joke, and I get great length and volume with Lash Sensational.  This is definitely a mascara worth checking out.

Maybelline Baby Lips in Rose Rush

Maybelline Baby Lips in Rose Rush

It is Springime and I am all over a coral lip.  I keep reaching for my Maybelline Baby Lips in Rose Rush from the Pink’ed collection. For those who haven’t tried Maybelline Baby Lips yet, they are a tinted lip balm.  I find them pretty moisturizing and comfortable on the lips.  They have a lot of shine and generally sheer pigmentation, though some shades do pack more of a punch of color than others.  Rose Rush is a pink toned coral shade that has sheer, but still noticeable pigmentation.  I think that Baby Lips are a great option and I often have one in my purse.

Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushes

Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushes

I found myself reaching for my Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushes all month long.  I have several of them, and I love the formula.  I know that you are all probably familiar with the Amazonian Clay Blushes, so I won’t spend a ton of time on them.  All you really need to know is that they are nicely pigmented and apply very smoothly.  The blushes pictured are in the shades Adventurous and Treasured, which were both Limited Edition, but any of the Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushes are worth exploring if you haven’t already done so.  They are a cult favorite for a reason.

Clean Apothecary Olive Oil Brush Shampoo in Lemon Scent

Clean Apothecary Olive Oil Brush Shampoo in Lemon Scent

I am still absolutely loving my Clean Apothecary Olive Oil Brush Shampoo in Lemon Scent.  I did a full review of this brush shampoo as well as the Goat’s Milk variety, so be sure to check it out for more details.  I still can’t get over how well it cleans my brushes and how quickly I can get through all of them.  It cuts through foundation and cream products like nothing else that I have tried.  I have a ton of brushes, and this brush shampoo makes it so much easier to clean them.  I also really like the subtle Lemon scent.  It is very fresh.  Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoo is a little expensive, but I think that for my needs it is absolutely worth the cost.

Pedi Scrub Foot Buffer

Spongeables Pedi-Scrub Foot Buffer

I was without my Spongeables Pedi-Scrub Foot Buffer for a couple months, and now that I have it back I can tell how much I missed it and what a difference it makes.  This is the Revitalizing Citron-Eucalyptus version.  I think that I may prefer the Lavender & Tea Tree Oil a little more, but both scents are very nice.  One side of the Spongeable is soft and gentle, infused with soap and aromatic botanicals to leave feet clean, fresh and sweet smelling.  The other side buffs away dry, rough skin on heels and soles, and exfoliates.  Use the soft side to cleanse and moisturize; flip the sponge over to the scruffy side to exfoliate and massage away aches, pain and tension.  I really like Spongeables, and don’t want to go without again.

B&BW Honeysuckle Wall Flowers

B&BW Honeysuckle Bouquet Wall Flowers

And finally, more of a lifestyle favorite is the Bath & Body Works Wallflower in Honeysuckle Bouquet.  I know that I have talked about how much I love B&BW Wallflowers.  They are so easy to just plug in and get any room smelling great.  I use candles in the living room, but I always have a Wallflower in the bathroom.  Honeysuckle Bouquet is described as “Sweet honeysuckle, pink peony and a touch of creamy vanilla bring spring to any room.”  I love the smell of honeysuckle, and this scent is divine.  I totally recommend picking it up for spring.

And, now onto some Fails for the month.  Sadly, I did have some products that I did not like at all.  Always keep in mind that my reviews are based on my specific experience with these products, and good or bad, you may have different results.  So, just because I give a product a bad review, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is a bad product.  It just means that it did not work for me.

Physicians Formula Argan Wear Renew BB Cream

Physicians Formula Argan Wear Renew BB Cream

My first fail of the month is the Physicians Formula Argan Wear Renew BB Cream.  I was so excited to try this out, and was extremely disappointed by its performance.  It is supposed to be “a luxurious, high performance formula that will even out your skin tone, vanishing flaws and imperfections and smoothing skin texture without ever leaving a greasy feel or finish.”  I tried so hard to make this product work for me.  I applied it with brushes, my fingers, a sponge, with and without primer.  No matter what I did, the BB Cream looked streaky and patchy on my skin.  I think there is too much oil in the formula, and that’s coming from someone with dry skin.  It sank into my pores, emphasized every flaw, and made my skin look terrible.  I was really surprised because I know a lot of people love Physicians Formula face products like this, but I hated the formula.  Also, people who are sensitive to smell will have a hard time using this product because the argan oil is kind of stinky.  All in all it was a big fail for me.

Born Pretty Water Decal Nail Wraps Set

Born Pretty Water Decal Nail Wraps Set

My other fail for the month was this Born Pretty Water Decal Nail Wraps Set.  This is the first product from the Born Pretty Store that has not worked at all for me.  The set includes five cute plaid patterns of full nail wraps that are water decals.  My main issue with these is that they were so big that they were completely unruly.  I had to cut them down a lot to fit my nails, and then when I tried to apply them, they kept folding up and creasing.  Every time I would try to smooth them out they would slip and slide around my nail because water decals are like that until they dry.  It was a very long and frustrating process which yielded very poor results.  I think the patterns are super cute, but they were not worth the hassle.

And that wraps up my Favorites and Fails for March.  I am sorry that this post was so late but like I said, I felt like I was dying last week, so it is better late than never.  I hope that you saw something that you liked.  I will try to get the full reviews of the new 2015 products up as soon as I can, though I probably won’t review the crappy BB Cream.  I’ll just say that it sucked and leave it at that.  But definitely a review for the L’Oreal Foundation and the Maybelline mascara will be coming down the pike.  What did you think of my Favorites and Fails?  Have you had any experience with these products?  Do you disagree with my opinions?  Let’s talk about it in the comments below.  Thanks again for all of your well wishes while I was sick.  I appreciate it, and I am so happy to be feeling better.

SOHO Beauty Introduces Elsa Frozen-Themed Makeup Bags

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Continuing on with Disney collections, SOHO Beauty now has line of makeup bags featuring Elsa from Disney’s hit movie Frozen.  Four new bags featuring the snow queen are available at drugstore.com, walgreens.com, and Walgreens locations.  They are similar styles to past collections with Disney princesses, this time around with a train case instead of the weekender.  The four bags have light blue and white Frozen snow theming.  They are very similar to each other, with almost the exact same image of Elsa’s face prominently featured.  The different style options (taken from drugstore.com) are:

  • SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Roundtop Bag- $7.99
  • SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Wristlet- $7.99
  • SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Organizer- $9.99
  • SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Train Case- $11.99
SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Roundtop Bag

SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Roundtop Bag

SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Wristlet

SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Wristlet

SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Organizer

SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Organizer

SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Train Case

SOHO Beauty Disney Elsa Train Case

And that is SOHO Beauty’s Elsa bag collection.  For those of you who are wondering, yes, there is a correlating Elsa Frozen makeup line from e.l.f., just like with previous princesses.  I know that it has popped up in certain Walgreens stores, but the makeup is not yet available at walgreens.com or drugstore.com.  What do you think?  Do any of these bags tempt you?  Have you purchased any of the SOHO Disney bags from past collections?  Let’s discuss in the comments below.

Great New Brushes from e.l.f. Now Available

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New Brushes from e.l.f.

New Brushes from e.l.f.

So last week, I told you about several new products that have been released from e.l.f. over the last couple of months.  Well, over the weekend e.l.f. released several new brushes to their Studio line that I thought deserved another post because I know some of you are going to want to get your hands on them soon. I am a big fan of the e.l.f. Studio line brushes.  I find that the Essential line can be pretty hit and miss, but the Studio line is consistently good quality for a very low price. It should be noted that almost all of these new brushes start at a slightly higher price than the old Studio brushes, but I will get into that.  So, let’s take a look at the brushes.  I’ll start quickly with the one that I told you about last week, just in case you missed that post.

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Kabuki Brush

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Kabuki Brush

As I mentioned last Tuesday, this is the e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Kabuki Brush.  According to e.l.f., this is “A true beauty multi-tasker, this brush works for blending, highlighting, contouring, and stippling.The densely compacted bristles distribute powder evenly to create a smooth and soft-focused finish. Flat edges fit the contours of your face while curved corners allow for targeted, precise application. The soft bristles of this Taklon brush are vegan-friendly and easy to clean.”  To use, e.l.f. suggests starting on the outside of the face in small circular motions, apply product over the forehead, nose, and cheeks.   At $10, the Ultimate Kabuki is pricey for the Studio line, most of which come in at $3 each.  In fact, I believe that it is the most expensive brush that e.l.f. makes.  However previous e.l.f. Kabuki brushes are regularly priced at $6, and the Ultimate Kabuki is a very large brush, so the price (even for e.l.f.) is not out of hand.  Compared to other brushes of this kind on the market, it is a down right steal.

e.l.f. Studio Contouring Brush

e.l.f. Studio Contouring Brush

Now onto the brand new brushes.  This is the e.l.f. Studio Contouring Brush.  “This brush is specifically designed for advanced makeup application to help achieve professional looks. The densely packed hair and structured shape achieves flawless dimension along the cheekbones, forehead, and jawline for targeted contouring. Perfect for using with pressed or loose bronzer powder, liquids, and creams to create beautiful sculpting all over the face. This brush is made by artisans with expert craftsmanship to cut, shape, and hand-assemble the ultra-fine hair for a luxurious experience.”  To use, apply color on the sides of the brush for a natural blend, or use the top of the brush for fuller coverage.  The Studio Contouring Brush retails for $6.00.  All three of the new face brushes are a step up from the standard, so to me it makes sense that they are a few dollars more than the rest of the Studio line.  Again, similar brushes to the Studio Contouring Brush would cost a lot more than $6.00 from any other brand.

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush

Next up is the e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush.  “The Ultimate Blending Brush is specifically designed for advanced makeup techniques that help achieve professional looks. The large dome-shaped head and densely packed bristles maneuver in and around the crevices and contours of your face for seamless, even coverage. It picks up the perfect amount of product to build coverage with powder, liquid, or mousse foundation, bronzer, or blush. The ultra-fine fibers are hand cut, shaped, and assembled by artisans for expert craftsmanship for a luxury experience.”  This brush reminds me a lot of the Real Techniques Buffing Brush that comes in the Core Collection Face Brush Set.  The Ultimate Blending Brush retails for $6.00.  This is the only one of the new brushes that makes me wonder if the higher price is warranted.  I don’t know how much a difference in manufacturing or precision that the Ultimate Blending Brush would have over say, the Studio Powder Brush that is only $3.  At the end of the day, $6 is very inexpensive for a good face brush, but I do wonder how e.l.f. is going to handle the complaints (because you know that there will be people balking at those extra $3).

e.l.f. Studio Eyebrow Duo Brush

e.l.f. Studio Eyebrow Duo Brush

The final brush may not seem as exciting as the face brushes, but I am actually pretty interested in the new e.l.f. Studio Eyebrow Duo Brush.  “This convenient dual-sided brush includes a dense angled brush on one end to precisely fill in and contour brows while the wand side combs and shapes hair into place. Perfect to use with powder, cream, and gel formulas for a polished look.”  To use, e.l.f. suggests to brush hair into shape with the wand end. Then, following the natural arch, fill in any sparse areas of the brow with the angled brush by using short feathery strokes that mimic hair to help shape and define.  I love the e.l.f. Studio Small Angled Brush, and use it every day to fill in my eyebrows.  I pair it with the Essential Brow Comb+Brush.  I think that it is great that they made this combo, and think that it will be super convenient and useful.  The e.l.f. Studio Eyebrow Duo Brush retails for $3.00.

I don’t know about you, but if I am being honest I want all four of these new e.l.f. brushes.  I don’t absolutely need the Ultimate Blending Brush because I do have a similar brush already, but the other three brushes would be totally unique to my collection.  Even with the slightly higher prices, these brushes are extremely affordable.  Of course, e.l.f. always has a sale going on, so I will probably wait until I can score a decent discount and then scoop them up.  How about you?  Are you interested in e.l.f.’s new brushes?  Let me know in the comments below.  Right now all four of these brushes are available at eyeslipsface.com.  I am not sure when or if they will make their way into Target stores.

Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoo

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Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoos

Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoos

Hey everyone, today I want to tell you about a product that has been a real game changer for me.  I have the Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoos to show you, and they have worked wonders for helping me clean my brushes in record time and making the process much less arduous.  I hate cleaning my brushes.  I hate it with the burning intensity of a thousand suns, and I put the task off as long as possible.  I have so many brushes and it takes so long to wash them that the process feel torturous.  (Yes, I am a little over-dramatic.)  The Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoos are so good that they have cut my cleaning time by more than half.  I am not exaggerating.  They are so easy to use and work wonders at getting deep into the brush heads to get all the makeup out, no matter how dirty the brush is.  You have to check them out.

Clean Apothecary Olive Oil Brush Shampoo in the Lemon

Clean Apothecary Olive Oil Brush Shampoo in the Lemon

Here is product description for these brush shampoos: “Clean Brush Shampoo is what makeup artists everywhere have been waiting for: a brush cleaner strong enough to cut the elbow grease out of washing your brushes, yet gentle enough to not ruin the pricey tools you spent so much time and money accumulating.  The answer came to creator Jessicca Ochs, in pure, essential ingredients drawn from the world we live in – not hazardous factories.  Clean Brush Cleaner comes in a solid soap form and eliminates the need for extra materials; simply wet your brush, swirl it around in the tub, rinse, and lay flat to dry.  With two equally-beloved formulas, the Goat’s Milk aids in whitening brush bristles, while the Olive Oil provides necessary conditioning, particularly for natural hairs.  These cleansers rinse completely from your brushes and leave behind a light, pleasant fragrance of your choice if you wish.  No heavy, oily or dense residue – only soft, fresh bristles that perform like new.

I purchased the Clean Apothecary Olive Oil Brush Shampoo in the Lemon scent, and the Clean Apothecary Goat’s Milk Brush Shampoo in Unscented.  Both formulas work equally well at cleaning every trace of makeup off my brushes.  Even foundation brushes only take a few swirls to become completely clean.  I used to have to go back into my cleansing product several times and really work it into the bristles to get my foundation brushes clean.  I hated doing it because I was concerned about damaging the bristles, but it was the only way to remove all of the makeup.  It would take two or three minutes to get just one brush clean, which really adds up when you have as many brushes as I do.  With the Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoo I don’t have to be so hard on my brushes to get them clean, and it takes mere seconds.  Another great bonus is that, because of conditioning agents in the shampoos, the process doesn’t dry my hands out at all.

Clean Apothecary Goat's Milk Brush Shampoo in Unscented

Clean Apothecary Goat’s Milk Brush Shampoo in Unscented

I wanted to try both the scented and unscented versions of the shampoo because I know that people can be sensitive to scent.  I also wondered if the unscented version would have an unpleasant natural aroma as many unscented products can have.  The Goat’s Milk Brush Shampoo in Unscented truly has no scent.  The ingredients are: Glycerin, palm oil, coconut oil, goat’s milk powder, titanium dioxide, tea tree oil, and essential oil scent.  I definitely noticed that it got my white brushes completely clean and properly white again.  I decided to try the Olive Oil Brush Shampoo in Lemon.  Other options are Eucalyptus, Lavender, Grapefruit, Rose, Vanilla, and Unscented.  The ingredients for the olive oil version are: Olive oil, glycerin, palm oil, tea tree oil, coconut oil, safflower oil, and essential oil scent.  The Lemon scent was strong during the washing process, not overpowering, but definitely noticeable.  It is a fresh and bright scent that I really liked.  There is a very subtle scent that lingers on the brushes for a few days.  You may not notice it if you aren’t trying to find it like I was, but I was getting the brush right under my nose and sniffing it.  After a few days, even that subtle scent vanishes, and I couldn’t smell any trace of the lemon left on my brushes.  There is no residue left on the brushes, one thing that I was worried about with the Olive Oil formula.  Instead, they were soft, clean, and ready to go.

I can not say enough good things about the Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoos.  They are fantastic.  I purchased mine through camerareadycosmetics.com.  The one drawback is that Clean Apothecary Brush Shampoos are kind of hard to find, and you will most likely need to purchase them online.  Camera Ready Cosmetics has two sizes of brush shampoo, 2 oz and 4 oz, available.  The 2 oz tub is $15 and the 4 oz retails for $20.  I realize that seems pretty pricey for brush cleaner, but let me tell you, it is worth every penny.  If you have a lot of makeup brushes and it takes you an hour or two to clean them, you need this in your life.  You will literally be amazed at how simply and easily your brushes get cleaned.

E.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set

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e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set

e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set

Today I want to talk about the e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set.  The four brushes included in the set are just over five inches long, making them compact and perfect for travel.  I was already a fan of the Stipple Brush and the Small Stipple Brush from e.l.f.’s Studio line, so I decided to pick up the travel set to see if there was any difference between these brushes and the regular line, and also to try the two eye brushes that are exclusive brushes to this set.  Here is what e.l.f. says about the set: “This Brush Set is perfect for the girl on the go who wants professional-looking makeup. This sleek case securely holds 4 must-have brushes and includes a zipper compartment for storing your makeup essentials. The antibacterial, synthetic-haired Taklon brushes are softer, more absorbent, and can be used with powder or liquid products. The unique bristle picks up two layers of product to disperse on skin for buildable coverage and an airbrushed effect. Be a professional makeup artist and create a flawless look with these e.l.f. Studio brushes!

e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set

e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set

The e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set comes in a textured black travel case that folds in half.  One side is a zippered makeup bag, and the other side has brush loops to hold the four Stipple Brushes.  The bag secures with a velcro tab.  The makeup bag is a decent size.  You aren’t ging to be able to fit a full face of makeup in there, but it is perfect to hold what you would need for touch ups throughout the day.  Though this set is a little big for small purses, it will fit perfectly in medium and large purses, and is actually quite handy.

e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set

e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set

The e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set comes with four brushes.

  • e.l.f. Stipple Brush
  • e.l.f. Small Stipple Brush
  • e.l.f. Eyeshadow Stipple Brush
  • e.l.f. Tapered Stipple Brush

I have had good luck with the e.l.f. Studio brushes in the past.  They are good quality brushes that wash well and are well made.  These brushes are no different in the quality of bristles as far as softness and durability.  It is a well-made set.  E.l.f. claims that the four brushes in the travel set are all you need to do your whole makeup routine.  I want to talk about each brush individually, and discuss what e.l.f says it can be used for versus what I think the brush is best suited for.  I think that this is a great set, and the brushes are very useful, but I do not necessarily agree with e.l.f. on how to use these brushes.  So, let’s start with the face brushes that are available individually in the regular e.l.f. Studio line.

e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush

e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush

The e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush is my go-to blush brush.  I use it everyday, and I really wanted to know if the travel version that is available in this set was any different than the regular version.  I am happy to report that the only difference between the travel brush and the regular brush is the length of the handle.  The travel Stipple Brush is a couple inches shorter than the regular Stipple Brush, but the brush head is exactly the same.  The bristles are the same length and they are just as densely packed, which is to say medium density.  It is not so flimsy as to be useless, but it is not so firmly packed that it can stand in for a foundation brush.  Which brings me to e.l.f.’s claims.  They say that you can use the Stipple Brush to apply and blend your foundation, but I highly disagree.  A foundation application would take forever to apply and blend with this brush and it could still give you a pretty streaky look.  It can be done, but it is not the best use for the Stipple Brush.  I think the Stipple Brush is best used for face powder and for powder blush, highlight, and bronzer.  It is perfect for powder products with a lot of pigmentation because it is so easy to go in with a light hand and build the product up as needed.  The Studio Stipple Brush is essential in my collection, and perfect for this set.

e.l.f. Studio Small Stipple Brush

e.l.f. Studio Small Stipple Brush

Next up, we have the e.l.f. Studio Small Stipple Brush.  Just like the larger version, the travel brush differs in size only at the handle.  The brush itself is the same size as the full size Small Stipple Brush.  Unlike the larger Stipple Bush, the Small Stipple Brush is pretty densely packed, and therefore great for liquid and cream products.  In fact, the bristles on the travel size Small Stipple Brush may be just a tad more dense than the full size Small Stipple Brush.  This brush is perfect for cream products.  I use it mainly for cream blushes and cream or liquid highlight, but you can also use it for powder highlight.  It’s also a great blush for blending out foundation in hard to reach places like around the nose and under the eyes.  E.l.f. is right on with it’s description of this brush, and I also think that it is an essential brush to have.

e.l.f. Studio Eyeshadow and Tapered Stipple Brushes

e.l.f. Studio Tapered and Eyeshadow Stipple Brushes

Both of the two face brushes in the e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set are available for $3 at eyeslipsface.com or at Target stores.  The next two brushes are exclusive to the set, and are designed to be used on the eyes.  They are the e.l.f. Studio Eyeshadow Stipple Brush and the e.l.f. Studio Tapered Stipple Brush.  I had never used a duo fiber brush for my eye makeup before, so I was curious about how these brushes would work.  I will start with the eyeshadow brush.

e.l.f. Studio Eyeshadow Stipple Brush

e.l.f. Studio Eyeshadow Stipple Brush

Of its Studio Eyeshadow Stipple Brush, e.l.f. claims that “The short rounded shape is ideal for an effortless smooth application and concentrated color.”  I have to say that this is my least favorite brush in the set, and the one that I think was a bit ill-conceived.  The Eyeshadow Stipple Brush is a large, flat, tapered duo-fiber brush.  If you think about the purpose of a duo-fiber stipple brush and how it is typically used (in a “stippling” motion), and then you compare that to how a flat shader brush is typically used, you can easily see what the problem is.  The Eyeshadow Stipple Brush does not pick up very much product, and the shadow it does manage to grab on to applies very sheer with a lot of fall-out.  It is a very wide brush, almost as wide as the Small Stipple face brush, which is an issue for someone with smaller eyes.  It is good for applying an under the brow highlight, but that’s about it.  In general, I think it’s a terrible eyeshadow brush.  However, that being said, I think the Eyeshadow Stipple Brush makes a fantastic concealer brush.  It’s also absolutely perfect for setting your under eye concealer with powder, without it going on too heavy and accentuating fine lines.  While I do not think that is essential, and in fact is pretty terrible for the job it was designed for, I think the Eyeshadow Stipple Brush is still a decent brush if you can think outside the box.  Though my least favorite brush in the set, the Eyeshadow Stipple Brush does have its uses.

e.l.f. Studio Tapered Stipple Brush

e.l.f. Studio Tapered Stipple Brush

The final brush in the set is the e.l.f. Studio Tapered Stipple Brush.  The width of the Tapered Stipple Brush is somewhere between a half and three quarters of the Eyeshadow Stipple Brush, so it is a much more appropriate size for the eye.  The bristles are long and stiff, so it does a pretty good job at precise blending.  This isn’t a large fluffy brush, so it is great for using on the outer V and blending into the crease.  I think it’s a good brush, but just like the other eye brush in this set, I am understanding why there aren’t more duo-fiber brushes for the eyes.  It is really only the tall white bristles on the Tapered Stipple Brush that get any product.  It looks cool, but the shorter black bristles don’t really do anything.  The Tapered Stipple Brush is a good brush for on-the-go blending and deepening the crease shade to take your look from day to night for after work drinks with the girls or a date night.

I hope that run down gave you a good idea of what to expect from the e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set.  I do think that it is a good travel set.  It is a convenient shape and size, and the brushes are wonderful for touch ups.  I do not think that you can do your whole face of makeup with just this set, though.  I think that you will need to look elsewhere for a foundation brush, and I’d recommend using a different flat shader brush for your eyeshadow.  Still, the set is worth considering, especially if you find yourself frequently doing your makeup on the run. The e.l.f. Studio Stipple Brush Travel Set retails for $15 on eyeslipsface.com, but there is always a sale going on to cut that price down.  For instance, I purchased my set for $7.50 during one of e.l.f.’s frequent 50% off sales.  Also, it should be noted that the set is listed as Limited Edition, but I purchased mine last March and it is still available, so I don’t know how “limited” the set really is.  I think it is a good little set with some issues, but that can definitely fit your needs.

Disney’s Jasmine “A Whole New World” Collection by e.l.f. and SOHO Beauty

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Disney's Jasmine

Disney’s Jasmine “A Whole New World” Collection by e.l.f. and SOHO Beauty

E.l.f. is continuing on with their Disney Princess collections, this time focusing on Princess Jasmine from Aladdin.  E.l.f.’s Jasmine “A Whole New World” Collection is available through Walgreens and drugstore.com, and there are six new items to choose from.  That’s not all, however.  SOHO Beauty is also continuing their contributions by introducing four Jasmine themed makeup bags.  Take a look.  All of these promotional images and product descriptions came from drugstore.com.

e.l.f. Jasmine

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Lip Collection

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Lip Collection $5.00: Get beautiful precise color that lasts for hours with this pigment-rich Lip Stain marker.  The pen-like tip lets you draw on color easily promoting a streak & smudge free professional look.  Infused with nourishing Vitamin E to hydrate and moisturize lips.  Indulge in sweet lip satisfaction with these Super Glossy Lip Shines.  Each shade can be worn alone or mix and match for a custom color.  The high shine formula provides rich color for a beautiful long-lasting look!

e.l.f. Jasmine

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Eyeliner Collection

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Eyeliner Collection $5.00: Instantly brighten your eyes with these shimmering metallic liners that put the spotlight on you.  The long-lasting and smooth formulation glides on effortlessly without tugging at the delicate eye area.  The built-in sharpener cap makes every application precise and perfect.  With 5 dynamic shades included, you will sparkle and shine for any occasion, day or night.

e.l.f. Jasmine

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Eye Collection

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Eyeliner Collection $5.00: This eye collection allows you to create looks that reflect your personal style for any occasion.  The beautiful soft textures melt into the skin for vibrant color that lasts.  Convenient and easy to apply, just layer the colors to achieve your desired look.  Apply the shadows wet or dry for a fabulous look that won’t crease or fade.

Products included:

  • Eyeshadow Compact (0.243 oz / 6.9 g)
  • Eyeshadow Applicator
  • Lengthening & Defining Mascara (0.05 fl oz / 1.5 ml)
  • Brightening Eyeliner Pencil (0.04 oz / 1.0 g)
e.l.f. Jasmine

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Ultimate Face Collection

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Ultimate Face Collection* $10.00: This convenient 15 piece makeup collection for your lips and face allows you to create any look that reflects your personal style for any occasion.  The small sleek design is great for on-the-go beauty touch ups.

Product includes:

  • 9 Lip Gloss Shades (Net Wt. 0.183 oz / 5.2 g)
  • 2 Blush & 2 Bronzer Shades (Net Wt. 0.42 oz / 12g)
  • Lip Brush
  • Face Brush

*I just wanted to note that this looks like it is the e.l.f. Essential 13 Piece Face & Lip Palette (which includes the two applicators without counting them as separate “pieces”) in different packaging.  The products are exactly the same, but the e.l.f. Essential 13 Piece Face & Lip Palette is $8 at eyeslipsface.com.

e.l.f. Jasmine

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Beauty Book

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Beauty Book $10.00: Includes a step-by-step guide for a fairytale makeup look.  This Limited Edition Disney Jasmine Beauty Book is a collectible item that is sure to reflect your inner pretty princess.  The all-in-one book includes the must have makeup essentials to create your favorite Disney look so you can be enchantingly beautiful for any occasion.

Product includes:

  • 7 Eyeshadow Colors (Net Wt. 0.317 oz / 9g)
  • Dual Ended Eyeshadow Applicator
  • Eyeliner Pencil (0.018 oz / 0.5 g)
  • Blush (0.099 oz / 2.8 g)
  • Bronzer (0.099 oz / 2.8 g)
  • Blending Brush
  • Lip Color (0.003 oz / 1 g)
e.l.f. Jasmine

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Nail Polish Collection

e.l.f. Jasmine “A Whole New World” Nail Polish Collection $5.00: Revolutionary bristle design helps glide color on flawlessly.  Quick dry formula promotes no-mess application, and infused with active Vitamin E for stronger, healthier nails.  Formaldehyde Free, Dibutyl Phthalate (DPB) Free, and Toluene Free.

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Mini Weekender

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Mini Weekender

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Mini Weekender Bag $9.99: The SOHO x Disney Jasmine Mini Weekender is perfect for keeping all your most-loved beauty essentials near while on the go.  A side-to-side zipper allows for easy access to bottles, compacts and more.  The inside is adorned with a tonal purple lining illustrating what Jasmine’s world is all about.  The Mini Weekender’s double handles make for easy toting while the black patent PU on the bottom of the bag provides sturdiness and extra support.

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Organizer

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Organizer

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Organizer $9.99: The SOHO x Disney Jasmine Organizer is the perfect way to store and carry your beauty essentials.  This convenient beauty bag features a classic Disney moment of true love on the outside, while the inside is lined with a tonal illustration of what Jasmine’s world is all about.  The zipper closure and carrying handle make this the perfect bag for keeping countertops mess-free.  Go for a whole new look with this magical bag.

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Roundtop Bag

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Roundtop Bag

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Roundtop Bag $9.99: The SOHO x Disney Jasmine Round Top Clutch features a full top-zipper for easy access and black patent PU on the bottom of the bag for sturdiness and extra support.  This multi-purpose bag is big enough to carry your phone, brushes, and more while on the go, while also fitting perfectly in your purse or backpack.  What will you use it for?  Let your heart decide.

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Wristlet

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Wristlet

SOHO Beauty Disney Jasmine Wristlet $8.99: The SOHO x Disney Jasmine Wristlet is the ideal companion. This handy bag is no diamond in the rough. The zipper closure will keep your phone, compact and cards safe while the wrist band allows for easy toting. Throw it in your bag or use alone.

There you have it.  What did you think of the Disney’s Jasmine “A Whole New World” Collection by e.l.f. and SOHO Beauty?  Did you grab any of the products from the three previous princess collections?  Are you thinking of grabbing anything from this collection?  I don’t know about you, but I am a sucker for gimmicky packaging, lol.  A part of me wants to pick up a couple items, but I’m just not sure if I’d really get any use out of them.  Do you know what I mean?  I am wondering if they will be coming out with a Cinderella collection next to coincide with the Cinderella movie coming out in a couple months.  Are there any other characters would you like to see in a e.l.f. and SOHO Beauty collab with Disney?  Let’s talk about it in the comments below.

Born Pretty 500Pc Mini Gold and Silver Round Stud Box Review *UPDATED*

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***Update at the end***

BPS Mini Round Studs

BPS Mini Round Studs

I have another nail art review for you, thanks for the Born Pretty Store.  This time, I am reviewing the Born Pretty 500Pc Mini Gold and Silver Round Stud Box.  I have several reviews of their products up now, so be sure to click on the Born Pretty Store link under “Categories” on the right hand side of the blog to see all the items that I have received from Born Pretty and how they worked for me.  Though I have never been a fan of three dimensional objects on my nails, my previous experience with the BPS Nail Art Decoration Wheel of Round Rhinestones has made me want to expand my horizons.  So, when Born Pretty offered to send me some more nail art products, I decided that I wanted to try out some hardware on my nails.

Born Pretty 500Pc Mini Gold and Silver Round Stud Box

Born Pretty 500Pc Mini Gold and Silver Round Stud Box

The Born Pretty 500Pc Mini Gold and Silver Round Stud Box has twelve compartments of mini dome-shaped studs.  The studs come in both gold and silver, and come in three different sizes: 1.2mm, 2mm/, and 3mm.  They are mostly separated by color, but the 1.2mm are small enough to sneak into neighboring compartments.  The gold and silver can look very similar in certain lighting, so you have to be more careful with the smallest studs to make sure you have the color you are looking for.  If you look closely, you can see that a single gold stud snuck into my manicure with all the silver ones.  I used the 2mm (medium) size on most of my nails, and the 1.2mm on my accent nail.  Here is a closer look at the three sizes, side by side.

Born Pretty 500Pc Mini Gold and Silver Round Stud Box

Born Pretty 500Pc Mini Gold and Silver Round Stud Box

The smallest studs can be a little tricky to pick up because of their tiny size, but otherwise the studs were easy to use and stayed put for the length of my manicure.  I did not need to use nail glue to secure the studs.  I chose to apply a layer of Seche Vite to top my polish and pressed the studs into the topcoat.  I then added a top layer of Seche Vite over the studs to seal them in.  The result was super glossy, and the suds did not budge.  Just like the rhinestones that I reviewed previously, these studs can be used on a number of projects, not just nails.  I think all three sizes are perfectly appropriate for nails, but if you think the 3mm are too big you can also use them to decorate your craft projects, cell phone case, sun glasses, etc. With a little lash glue, you can use them as body art as well.

BPS Mini Round Studs

BPS Mini Round Studs

For this look I used CQ polish in Slate with Zoya Bevin for the accent nail.  I really liked the Born Pretty 500Pc Mini Gold and Silver Round Stud Box and will definitely use the studs in future manicures.  I like the hard edge they give the look, while still being subtle.  I think they easily transition from work to play, appropriate in the office or at a rock concert.  I definitely think that they are a good buy.  The box is $3.95 on the BPS website.

BPS Mini Round Studs

BPS Mini Round Studs

As I’ve mentioned in previous reviews, the Born Pretty Store is located in China, so shipping will take a while.  That was especially true during the Holiday Season because of some hold ups with customs.  I am not sure if that is still the case, but October through December orders were taking even longer that the typical 2-3 weeks, possibly as much as 5 weeks or more.  Hopefully those issues have been resolved.*  On the upside, shipping is free worldwide with no minimum purchase amount, and orders ship within 24 hours.  Check out their website bornprettstore.com, or facebook page for more details.  For 10% off any regular priced items from the website, use coupon code BBBK31.

BPS10offcode

FTC Disclosure: The product reviewed in this post was provided to me for free by Born Pretty Store for consideration.  This does not guarantee a positive review, and my thoughts on these products are 100% honest.  No other type of compensation was accepted.

*Update: I heard back from my contact at Born Pretty, and the issue with customs has been resolved.  It is normal for orders to take 2-4 weeks to ship to the US, and in my experience, it has been 2-3weeks.  You should still plan ahead if you are ordering something time sensitive like holiday items and order early.  But at least it’s a reasonable wait time again.