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June 2014 Beauty Favorites

11 Jul

Finished

So, it’s almost the middle of July. I seem to be very late on this one! But hey, it’s still July, so technically I am on time. Technically.

Caolion Pore Mool Pool Deep Cleansing: This was one of the items in my Memebox Mini #2, and I have fallen utterly in love. It’s a bizarre combo cleanser/makeup remover, but unlike any one I’ve tried before. Usually makeup removers are heavy on the oil (and I’ll be honest, I often use straight-up Vaseline for removing stubborn cat eyes), but this is an oil-free blend that leaves you feeling so refreshed.

Solstice Scents Cameo: Yes, I’ve finally obtained a full size of this after raving about it in the Spring Collection post. Cameo is everything. Cameo is life. Almond, rose, cream… it’s like a perfect afternoon tea party.

MAC Pure Heroine Lipstick: I’m pretty sure no one has noticed, but the purple for both my header font and the lipstick ratings is identical to MAC’s Heroine. Yes, there are a few makeup-themed Easter eggs in the design! Purple lipstick is basically my favorite thing on earth so I jumped on Pure Heroine insanely fast. It’s really only slightly darker than the original but the brightness is toned down significantly, leaving a perfect rich purple for a vampy look. It’s summer, but I will rock fall makeup if I want to!

Shiro Cosmetics’ Chinchillin’: When I was a little girl, I begged my dad for a pet chinchilla. It never happened. But at least now I own this amazing eyeshadow! It’s a highly shimmery grey-purple combo… I wouldn’t say that it is a duochrome, but depending on the light it can lean more neutral or very bright. It’s one of those lovely shadows that is perfect for a one-shadow look… or with a little bit of Dammit Moon Moon in the crease!

ELF Ariel Collection Surf’s Up Bronzer: I went a little crazy trying to find this, hitting up 3 Walgreens in the city before an amazing saleswoman looked up where it was still in stock for me. And behold, it’s all mine! This isn’t really in my favorites because I like to use it… it’s actually a really gorgeous golden bronzer, but it’s SO PRETTY I don’t want to ruin it. I’ll just hold it and pretend it’s part of my underwater treasure trove.

May 2014 Beauty Favorites

2 Jun

Websize

While I originally intended the “Lipstick” half of this blog to focus on reviews of indie products and beauty boxes, I’ve recently found myself drawn to… well, more standard beauty blog-style posts. Hauls, reviews of commercial products, and monthly favorites! So let’s dive into what I’ve been putting all over mah face this past month.

Sephora + Pantone Universe Rush Luster Cheek Sweep Palette: While the name of this product might be a mouthful, it’s pretty simple. A blush palette with, well, blush in it! Two blushes: the radiant orchid you’d expect from this year’s lineup, and a gorgeous rose gold that doesn’t match anything in my collection. The middle champagne is more of a highlighter, like a powder version of Benefit’s Watts Up. Both of the smaller blushes also make gorgeous shadows! I love blush. I love purple things. I love highlighter. I love rose gold. This palette is basically my life right now.

MAC Pink Poodle Glaze Lipstick: I am a sucker for limited edition colors. And cutesy names. This was an impulse purchase that I regretted horribly until I actually got it in the mail: it’s a gorgeous, vibrant fuchsia with an irresistible blue sheen. Perfect for summer! Okay, it’s not summer yet and to be honest I HATE summer (spring and fall are my jam) but I don’t even care hot pink lips all the time

Dreamworld Hermetica  Mystical Sunset Eyeshadow: About 6 or 7 months ago I went through a lavender & mauve eyeshadow craze. I then promptly “organized” them all and proceeded to forgot where they were. While looking for my rose golds I stumbled upon my lilac treasure trove and the obsession started all over again. Mystical Sunset is my flavor of the moment: it’s a perfect soft wash of color for the lids, springy and sweet.

Oopsie Daisies Up & Away Nail Polish: I pretty much got a 3DS just to play Animal Crossing New Leaf (and SMT IV… and Pokemon Y….), so I was pretty much forced into buying this polish. By my brain. It’s actually kind of hard to work with: the white cream base is a little thin and it’s VERY chunky glitter (well, it’s matte, so not “glitter”), so it’s best to start with a white base from another company and use this as a glitter topcoat. Once you get the hang of it, it’s *totally fabulous*

Michael Todd Tropical Fruit Enzyme Exfoliating Scrub: I got this in my March Birchbox, but didn’t really start using it until this month. It’s a very, VERY gentle exfoliant: probably gentle enough to use every day, though of course that’s not something I’m really willing to do. But I use it every other day in the morning and it’s been working wonders. I slacked off on my skincare for a few months and payed a heavy price, so I have been fighting a battle to bring it back to a more presentable level and this is my new best friend. Great for both the flaky dry skin on my forehead and my acne-prone chin. Marry me, enzyme scrub.

Bonus item: Aquaphor! I have perpetual dry lips. Basically nothing helps. Not Vaseline, not lanolin, not chapstick. Well, they mitigate the problem, but never stop it. Enter Aquaphor. I went to get a tattoo and the artist insisted on using Aquaphor for aftercare instead of Vaseline. Of course I have a ton left over, so I’ve been using it as an overnight lip mask. Suddenly, I can wear drying lipsticks without painful cracking and flaking. It’s a miracle.

Review: Sleek’s i-Divine in Del Mar Vol. 1

29 May

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Sometimes I sit around and think about the drugstore makeup available in the UK and cry a little bit inside. Because let’s face it, they have it way better than the US in that regard. But we have Sephora, so I suppose it evens out. And Sleek, my favorite UK drugstore brand, ships to the US for insanely cheap. I mean under $2 cheap. Shipping & handling on this palette was a whopping $1.34, bringing the whole shebang to a shockingly reasonable $13.33.

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If I had one complaint about Sleek, it’d be the packaging on the limited edition palettes. They always have SUCH beautiful box design, but the actual palettes are just the usual black cases. Sigh. They’re the only makeup items of mine I keep in their original packaging, aside from Paul & Joe. Also, they use a black, rubber-ish material similar to NARS but it somehow manages to be even more prone to picking up fingerprints. I swear I rubbed most of them off before taking this picture, but yet some remain…

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Del Mar follows this season’s super-bright matte trend, but for a much more reasonable price than, say Urban Decay’s Electric Palette or some of the other mid to high end brands. It’s also got a lovely, fresh selection of shades–not exactly neons, but definitely not ordinary colors.

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My other Sleek pet peeve is that the names of the shadows are on a plastic insert. I think their makeup naming is pretty creative and I so wish they just stamped it on the back of the box. I really hate having to keep these stupid things, sigh.

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Mm, yeah. Look at those colors. We’ll start descriptions with the top row!

Lounge Lovers is a very shimmery silver with taupe undertones, it has the most glitter of any in the palette

Poolside is a deep, matte teal

Sunset Strip is a lovely matte clementine

Ambience is a basic matte eggplant

Chilled Out is a matte white, and one of the only shades in Del Mar with pigmentation issues

Blue Marlin is a stunning matte peacock blue

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Why is the mirror so dirty?! It’s all a dust magnet, I tell you.

Opening Party is a navy blue with just a hint of satin finish and a teeeny bit of pink shimmer

On The Rocks is a perky coral with a shimmer finish

Talamanca is a matte cocoa brown, and one of the only “normal” shades in Del Mar

Feel Euphoric is a pink-leaning coral with a bit of shimmer

Balearic Beat is a matte kiwi green that looks a bit sickly in the pan

Paradise is a gorgeous matte lilac

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Swatches, one swipe applied wet onto bare skin (as always, I should just make a little disclaimer about this).

As you can see, pigmentation is pretty intense on most of these. Chilled Out falls a little flat, but since it’s basically a highlight shade and I have enough white shadows in my collection to last me several lifetimes it gets a definite pass. I was also not that impressed with Talamanca, which looks much darker and richer in the pan. But, again, it’s really the common colors that fall short.

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The surprise favorite for me was Lounge Lovers. From online shots I expected a straight silver, but it’s really a lovely taupe! And, of course, Blue Marlin has a special place in my heart because of my intense love for peacock blue. But I think in general the bottom row has better pigmentation than the top: probably because of all the shimmers, which performed better than the mattes.

While this might not be a wearable palette for a lot of people, I’m a color addict: I love brights, I love playing around with color combinations and contrast. There are a lot of relatively unique shades in here, and the mattes definitely make it more refined and less “night club.” While it’s in the same family as UD’s Electric, I don’t think there is a single shade overlap. Which is great, because I plan on combining them into a color explosion on my face.

So if you are scared of Electric’s pricetag or the colors in Sleek’s Acid & other matte palettes, this might be one to try! It’s summery, it’s tropical, it’s bright and refreshing, it’s insanely cheap. Really, it’s hard to go wrong with any Sleek palette. Except for the damn dust-attracting packaging.

Makeup Adventures: De-Potting & Re-Potting Liquid Cosmetics

27 May

Are you guys ready to come on an adventure with me through some truly terrible photos as I attempt to destroy my Rimmel concealer and put it in another jar? Of course you are. Because, you know, who doesn’t want to look at blurry, grainy iPod photos of my squished makeup?

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Here we have the surgical tools: a spatula, a jar to transfer the concealer into, scissors, and of course… the makeup itself: Rimmel Match Perfection 2-in-1 Concealer & Highlighter in 125 Fair. I actually LOVE this concealer. It’s pale enough for me (which is rare), it’s got lovely coverage but it doesn’t look cakey, and it has a great highlighting effect that makes it perfect for undereye circles. However, it has one of those annoying bristle applicators where you squeeze out a little at a time into a faux-brush. I don’t have time for that shit. I’m going to be blending it in with my Beauty Blender or a concealer brush anyway, and all the applicator does is waste product as it dries it all up between uses. The solution? De-pot and then Re-pot!

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As I’m sure you can tell from this super detailed closeup in high definition (I am soooo sorry, it was very late, I don’t know what I was thinking with these pictures), I hit a bit of a bump almost immediately after cutting the bottom off. The damn thing is less than half full. And I’ve used it maybe 4 times? So there was no way it was fitting into my picked re-potting jar. BUT I have a million tiny jars lying around, so I just swapped the taller one out for your basic 5 gram cosmetic jar.

Because the damn tube for this was so long, and there was so little product for it given the size, it was easiest to cut into sections and then scoop into the jar. Behold, the carnage.

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It filled the 5g jar right to the brim thankfully, and considering how much I use in a week (yeah, I don’t use it daily, I have so many concealers I like to switch it up), this will last me a long time. I managed to get almost all the product out, but sadly with anything liquid you are never really going to get 100%. There’s always some stuck to the walls of the container. Damn you, Rimmel!

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If you attempt any kind of de-potting, I highly suggest keeping a record of the item’s full name & shade. I just take pictures so I have a visual catalog of all my abused products: it’s an easy way to keep track of them all.

De-potting can be scary. You’re ruining packaging and taking a big risk by taking your precious makeup babies out of their first homes. Makeup babies? I mean, it’s not like I think of my eyeshadow palettes as an extension of my family or anything! Everyone calls them that. I swear. Ahem, anyway. De-potting can really be a HUGE space-saver for liquid products like foundation, highlighter, liquid blush, face primer, or shadow primer (one thing I depot immediately after getting it–SO much easier to apply!). Just, you know, do it during the day. When you can take halfway decent shots of all the gory action.

Review: Clinique All About Shadow Palette in Neutral Territory 2

30 Apr

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If you are like me, Clinique is a “mom brand.” It’s something you associate with your mother and middle-age women: classy, but not on-trend. However, they are working hard to change their image (I mean, they have purple lip crayons! that are really purple!), so when I heard people raving about their new neutral palette, I ordered it during the VIB sale. Because, you know, I need more neutral palettes. And purple lipsticks. Never enough.

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Clinique was known for their seafoam green packaging for a loooong time, but they’ve recently switched to a mirror-finish for blushes and eyeshadows. It’s super-modern, but almost like… trying too hard to be modern? It’s like it is yelling at me LOOK HOW SLEEK AND MODERN I AM CHECK IT OUT CHROME FINISH ROUNDED CORNERS, DO I REMIND YOU OF A HIGH-END SINK? Also it gets fingerprints all over it and it’s so messy and smudgy, I had to buff it hardcore to get an even semi-decent shot. But, you know, it’s just packaging.

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The shadow names are kind of hilarious. Many of them are taken from other quads or duos, and don’t have individual names. So they are, from left to right: sugar cane, light shade of diamonds & pearls duo, light shade of neutral territory duo, light shade of day into date duo, brown shade of polar blue quad, hazy, black honey, dark brown shade of morning java quad.

Just think of how much fun questions about looks with this will be! “Oh, I have “light shade of diamonds & pearls duo” as a highlight, black honey as a wash of color on the lid, and “dark brown shade of morning java quad” in the crease with “light shade of neutral territory duo” on the lashline.” Not at allll a mouthful.

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It comes with one of those weird plastic covers that separates the shadows from the brush. I never know what to do with these. It feels wrong to throw them out–they’re not flexible plastic, so they’re like… important? I don’t know?! They leave me feeling confused. Also there’s a friggin sponge applicator here, what the heck Clinique. Why.

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Okay, so I’ve been a little flippant so far, but that’s because it is easy to rag on the packaging and names when the shadows are THIS FREAKING GORGEOUS.  Uuuuuuhnfffff. They’re juicy. We’ve got a sparkling white, a yellow-tinted cream, a soft beige, a pink-mauve, a pale taupe, a deep brown, a maroon-burgundy (okay, I can’t describe Black Honey, it’s magic), and a rich mocha. Note that I didn’t use the shade names because they are absurd.

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None of the shadows are matte, and they all have a satin finish (except for sugar cane, which verges on glittery). The special thing about this palette is how they are satin-finished. It almost reminds me of indie shadows: the glitter is so multidimensional, it’s almost… rainbow? Well, I am terrible at describing this, so let’s just go to the swatches.

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These are all applied wet, one swipe with an OCC lip brush, over dry skin. All of the shades are highly pigmented: some of the lighter ones kind of disappear into my skin, but I assure you they really are there! And you can see a bit of the colorful shimmer here: there are hints of purple in the darkest brown, for instance.

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Angle them a bit and BAM, sparkleeee city. It’s a nice, understated “sparkle” that is definitely more shimmer/satin, but the colors in it are so unusual for a commercial neutral palette. The shades have so much depth, almost all of them would work for a single lid color. I actually already had a full size of Black Honey before getting this so I knew what I was getting into, but I did not expect this much pigmentation from the lighter shades!

This palette is $36 on Sephora, and the pans are pretty huge: about the same size as those in the Naked palettes. Each shadow works out to $4.50 and they are .05oz each. For comparison, the singles are $15 for .07oz. So if you’re interested in only a few, you are getting your money’s worth: but trust me. You will use all of these.

Review: Sleek’s Blush By 3 in Sweet Cheeks

28 Apr

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I have a thing for purple blush. If I see it, I have to buy it. I plan on doing a post with all of them soon–though, of course, I always feel like I have just one more to buy. So I am amazed that I put off purchasing this for so long: it was a limited edition, and I bought the matching palette. But sadly, I was convinced I could get the blushes for retail “later on.” Nope, I got this for $24 on eBay. Sigh. So was it worth paying $10 over retail–which, for a drugstore product, is a lot?

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I kind of hate that Sleek has these cute designs on their packaging but the physical product is just in a black case. It’s reminiscent of NARS, only boxy and not quite as sleek (hehe, sleek). But, you know, it’s a drugstore product so I am willing to compromise on packaging if the product is higher quality than US drugstore stuff.

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Ahhh, it’s so shiny. The sparkles. The shimmer. The lilac. It’s calling to me.

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There are three shades: Cupcake (a hot plum cream blush), Dollymix (a soft lilac with a satin finish), and Candy Floss (a hot pink with intense glitter).

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Swatches, applied on bare skin: each blush is swatched heavily and then blended, in the same order they are on the palette. I have mixed feelings on this palette as a whole. The good: Cupcake is INSANELY pigmented and blends like a dream. It’s soft and silky and while at first it’s easy to overdo, it blends out to a soft but bright flush. Cupcake is a fun, bold color that I am totally in love with: like a hot hot pink version of NARS’ Angelika.

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But, as you can see, there’s an issue with Dollymix. It’s not really at all purple once you apply it. The lilac fades to a very light, pale pink. There’s only a hint of purple to be found, and it’s super lightly pigmented: this swatch took 4 swipes with a brush, whereas Cupcake took 1 and Candy Floss took 2.

So while I really wanted this for the purple blush, it ended up being the worst of the lot. However, it’ll make a nice purple highlighter… and the other two blushes are awesome. I hadn’t even paid attention to them originally, and they are a hell of a lot better than Dollymix! So do I regret not getting this at retail? Yes. Do I regret buying it at a markup? No. I’m a blush palette whore. Even with the lackluster purple, I ended up with 2 super-pigmented blushes I will use the heck out of… for less than the price of one NARS blush. The only issue is that now I want all the Sleek blush palettes. All. Of. Them.

Review: Josie Maran Argan Lip & Cheek Color Stick Set

24 Apr

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Hello, my name is Leah Bayer and I am a blush addict. I need every color, every finish, every formula, every brand. Loose, pressed powder, liquid, cream, gel. Every shade from deep berry to hot pink to palest lilac. And because I have so many (and want so many more), smaller is always better. So of course when the Josie Maran Argan Lip & Cheek Color Stick Set popped up for a low $34, of course I jumped all over that. Plus I nabbed it during the VIB sale, so at 15% off it was too good of a deal not to get. Or so I tell myself.

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These are so adorably tiny. They are sleekly designed and would probably be great for traveling: small, compact, and you don’t have to worry about powder breaking.

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Each comes with a funny little plastic topper to keep them “fresh.” Since the gels can dry up this is important to not throw out, but it’s kind of funny. Like a hat for your blush!

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From left to right the colors are: Twinkle, Coral, Pink, and Beautiful. I’m not sure why two have actual names and two are just the colors, but oh well. There is under an inch of product in each stick, but you only need a single swipe to get enough for a decent blush look. I think these will last a really long time. I’m actually worried about them drying out over the summer, so I will probably pop them in the fridge!

Also, they smell incredibly strongly of pickled ginger–the kind you get with sushi. So if you happen to be disgusted by that scent, these probably aren’t for you. Thankfully I think ginger is the bomb diggity.

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This is one hard swipe of each color. Twinkle is more of a highlighter than a blush, so it’s less pigmented, but the other four pack a real punch. Pink and Beautiful look a bit similar, but Beautiful is definitely darker and more plum-like.

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Blended out! This was just lightly blended with my fingers, so while the initial application might be scary these are so wearable with a soft hand. They give a really dewy finish so they are perfect for the summer months ahead of us! They also last FOREVER: unlike powder, you don’t have to worry about fading, and they don’t “melt off” like some creams. These pack serious staying power.

I think there’s a nice variety of colors in this set and I am 100% happy with my purchase. In fact, I like them a lot more than I thought I would: I was expecting streaky, overpowering stain-power like Tarte’s push-up blushes, but these are much smoother and softer. They feel hydrating, though I’m not quite sure if they are actually beneficial for your skin (since Josie Maran sells argan oil for an INSANE markup, I’m not about to trust all the health benefits they slap on their products).

Ipsy April 2014

20 Apr

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Spring has sprung, the trees are budding, the birds are making baby birds, so it’s about time for makeup boxes to get a little less gloomy. Ipsy, I am so tired of hair products. So very tired. Thankfully, this month’s box was bright and cheery–okay, maybe not the colors, but I certainly felt happy opening it all up.

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This month’s bag seemed to get a lot of hate, but I really love it. Mainly because my boyfriend has a huge record collection–you might have noticed the record player I’ve taken several photoshoots on. Yeah, that used to be the living room table. Now it’s the music table. My dad has an exponentially larger record collection, so this bag makes me feel all nostalgic. I’m definitely using it next time I take a trip home!

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Urban Decay 24/7 Velvet Liner in Black Velvet (0.03oz/$15): The UD liner was this month’s big hyped item, because… well, it’s Urban Decay! And everyone got one, unlike most higher end brands that only end up in a handful of bags. Personally, I have at least two other black pencil liners from UD, along with a liquid one, so technically I don’t really *need* this but I want it. It’s soft and made specifically for smudging: it’s great for a grunge/rocker look, but I’ve found it to not be as opaque as their usual blacks and also much softer. Basically, not great for a crisp wing, but lord knows I have enough black pencils/gels/etc that fill that slot.

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Mary Kay At Play Jelly Lipgloss in Teddy Bear (fullsize/$10): I have one item of Mary Kay makeup: a tiny, super-copper bronzer that makes a decent shadow. I got it for $2 on eBay. And hey, I like it, so this can’t be THAT bad… right? Wrong. So wrong. There are many gloss formulas I can tolerate: Buxom, Dior and NARS, for starters. Not too sticky, but with the right amount of shine. This is none of that. It’s thick, tacky, feels disgusting on your lips, yet somehow manages to sink into cracks and highlight them like a matte lipstick would? And it’s a gross nude shade, concealer-toned. Oh, and the color is almost sheer and not even that glossy. I am loathe to waste a product, though, so I plan on mixing it with a balm formula and adding some pigments for color. I will Franken this into a useable product one way or another!

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Swatches of the gloss and liner. I’m not sure why my hand looks so giant, but now I am very self-conscious of hand-size in photos. You can see that the UD isn’t 100% opaque, but aww a flower! Seriously, it’s awesome for smudging. The gloss? Yeah, it’s awful. Nude-tinted-orange. Who wants that on their face?

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Big Sexy Hair Root Pump (1.6oz/$2.71): I am not a person who does things with her hair. My hair is super thick and annoyingly long: it has volume for days and is perfectly shiny with only washing and brushing. Before I started subbing to beauty boxes, I had no hair products. Now I have a dozen (not counting shampoo or conditioner). One of these days I will take a picture, it’s pretty funny. I usually toss them in a cabinet and say “yeah, I am so gonna use this!” but never do.

This, though? I will so use it. I will give myself crazy, volume-filled 80′s hair. Mousse is so low-maintenance. I don’t have to think “ahh, is this too much oil? Wait, do I scrunch my hair BEFORE the spray or AFTER?” Put it in and aha, Farrah Fawcett.

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Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion Skin Exfoliant (.25oz/$9.75): Oh, another physical exfoliant! I don’t have enough of those. Dr. Brandt is one of those insanely overpriced brands I’d never, ever buy for myself but I loooove getting samples of. I can pretend I’m wealthy enough to pay $78 for an exfoliant! Though, honestly, even if I could I wouldn’t: I plan on continuing sample-hoarding until I am stocked for life.

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Rainbow Honey Polish in Midnight Fountain (mini/$5): There were two big ticket items in this month’s bag aside from the UD liner: this polish, and the Benefit Lolitint. I plan on snatching up a tint on eBay, so I was hoping for the polish. It was crazy rare: I’ve only seen a handful of boxes with it, and I was thrilled to get it in mine! It’s so freaking pretty. Many indies overdo the glitter but Rainbow Honey gets it just right. I’ve already ordered the mini surprise bag for April, and I’ll be back again soon for some of the Sweet Talk collection.

Total Bag Value: $42.46

While I hate the Mary Kay gloss with the passion of a thousand suns, everything else is totally spot-on. If you feel like signing up for Ipsy, please feel free to use my referral link!

Haul Hard: Sephora’s Spring 2014 VIB Sale

4 Apr

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Sales are one of my many weaknesses. I just can’t resist them. And I went totally overboard during last year’s holiday VIB sale (seriously, it was an embarrassing haul), and I swore I would tone it down for the spring sale. Okay, mostly because it is only 15% off while the winter one is 20%, but whatever. I gave myself $50 to spend and that was IT. No going over the limit! And I did it.

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Can we all take a minute to appreciate how terribly focused this is? Pro tip: don’t decide to mix it up by shooting on a record. Just don’t. They are shiny and distracting and ooh look at the lines and the books wait what am I supposed to be focusing on? ANYWAY I actually got my 3 requested samples this time, which is kind of a miracle: Prada Candy (which I love and must buy a full bottle of RIGHT NOW oh god why is this happening), Katy Perry’s Killer Queen (don’t judge me!), and Becca’s highlighting whosawatsit in Opal. Cause I need more highlighters fo real.

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I’ve had 300 points sitting in my account for such a long time, I decided they were getting lonely and cashed in on a mini Buxom lipgloss. I never save up for the 500 point samples because they always, without fail, have something in them I own (no I don’t need more Stila Kitten or NARS Orgasm what the hell Sephora, if I spend $500 here ASSUME I HAVE THOSE THINGS). There’s more variety with the 100 points and I’m actually really happy with this because Buxom makes one of the only lipgloss formulas I can tolerate. I was totally going to swatch this and then I remembered I was coming back to do separate posts for the rest of the things in here and could just swatch it then. But of course now I realize that no, I’m not going to give the mini gloss its own post too, that’s idiotic. So no swatch because sometimes my brain doesn’t do thinking good.

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I love blush. I love all the blush. Cream blush, powder blush, liquid, gel, solid. But I especially like blush sets and palettes. I have been waffling on the Josie Maran Argan Lip & Cheek Color Stick Set ($34) for a while now but I finally decided to just go for it and order the suckers. It’s 4 little baby gel sticks and they are so cute and shiny. But I like small sizes: I have so so many blushes I doubt I’ll hit pan on any of them (okay, maybe on Orgasm or some of the tiny Tarte ones…). Also one is a super gold highlighter that is so summery. Why is it still cold, weather? Get your shit together.

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Another item that has been sitting in my cart forever! Apparently this was the “buy shit you can’t make up your mind about” sale. Clinique has a fantastic shadow formula and for $36 this palette is a steal. There were 2 reasons I originally hesitated: 1) I have a large size of Black Honey, the second shadow to the right, and 2) I absolutely do not need another neutral palette. I need LESS neutral palettes. But look it’s so pretty and warm toned and the pinks and I just I just NEED it.

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This is where I’d put pictures of my unboxed Electric palette, IF I WAS ALLOWED TO OPEN IT. My birthday is less than two weeks away and this is a present from the boyfriend. So, no touching! But he wanted me to get the points which is super sweet. And also, you know, the 15% discount. I wanna touch it. So bad.

VIB Sale

Okay, so this isn’t from Sephora even a little bit, but it came the same day so here it is. Originally I didn’t plan to buy anything from the MAC By Request line, even though Pink Poodle made my heart flutter. But apparently on release day when the bf woke me up early to say goodbye before he went to work I checked my email on my phone, saw the announcement, and ordered this. Literally I have no memory of doing it. But, uh I guess I did order Pink Poodle because here it is! And it’s so pretty. Like Jilted’s happy, preppy sister. And Jilted is probably my favorite lip color so man oh man am I excited for this one.

Of course I want to buy more stuff but I am very happy with the things I got: both the cheek gel set and the Clinique palette are (theoretically) everyday use items. I still do have to go to a physical store to pick up my bday gift, so I feel like the new Becca beach tint minis might make their way back with me, or at least the Bite vivid mini duo. But hey, if it’s under $20 it doesn’t count in Sephora-world! That’s my logic and I am sticking to it.

Benefit’s April Fools Mistake

1 Apr

Before we get into the actual, you know, content related to this website, a brief PSA: while I swore I totally would never crosspost anything from Plastikitty (my main website) here, I reviewed my cat for April Fools and he is totally the cutest so you should go coo over his squishy face. Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.

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April Fools jokes in the makeup community are usually rather innocent. Like Julep’s cat polish line (which I 100% admit I would buy if it was a real thing). But sometimes ugly biases and prejudices peek to the surface, which unfortunately is the case with Benefit’s April Fools “BeneBro” line, a fake line of makeup products for guys.

On first glance, it actually seems pretty realistic: brow products, a dual breath refresher and chapstick. These are all marketable items. The thing is, makeup is changing: it’s not just for girls anymore. A lot of guys are realizing that they too can fix small imperfections. The mood is slowly swinging from “women lie with makeup!” to “hey… maybe I can cover up my acne scars too?!”

But for guys, wearing makeup is a HUGE stigma sadly. We’ve yet to progress to a point where it is seen as okay and normal. Coming out with a real line aimed at men would be a giant leap in the right direction. Small, easy to use things like a simple brow kit, concealer, clear mascara, finishing powder: this could sell, and sell well. Especially if packaged in a manly, tongue-in-cheek way. I’m picturing something along the lines of the Old Spice commercials, but with super pretty lashes. So by slapping a big “HAHA this could only happen on April Fools, suckers!” on it, Benefit is making makeup for men out to be a joke. Which it’s not. For shame, Benefit!

Of course, this could be them fishing for interest. But still, it’s not cool. Men are the minority in the makeup world: don’t kick them when they’re down. We want them to come play with makeup! Benefit, you are making it *this much harder* to convince my boyfriend to let me put mascara on his beautiful lashes. Go sit in the corner and think about what you did. And maybe, just maybe, release this line as a serious thing. Because everyone deserves to feel kickass about themselves, whether it’s by running around naked-faced or by putting on hot pink eyeshadow.