An Ode to Glossier

 

If there’s one brand that speaks to millennials right now, it’s Glossier. Their “Skin First, Makeup Second” mantra caters to the young twenty-something crowd who are way too busy going to school or work (or hot yoga) to spend 30+ minutes on a full face of makeup. And you know what – it has me hooked too.

I have only tried a few products from Glossier, but I can already tell that I like how the products perform and how convenient they are. So far, I have tested out: the Cloud Paint in both Puff and Beam, The Balm Dotcom in Coconut, and the Super Pure Serum.

Cloud Paint

This has been my favorite purchase from this brand so far, and let me tell you – I hate cream blushes with a passion. Why? They fade, they’re patchy, and they’re so sticky. But somehow Glossier really hit the nail on the head with these little guys because not only is the product name dreamy, but so is the formula. Both colors are gorgeous; Puff being a bright baby pink and Beam being a soft pinky-peach color. You really only need a teeny tiny amount – and while they blend perfectly well with fingers, my preferred method is to dot the product on my cheeks and then go in with a flat stippling or kabuki brush to blend everything out. I love that I can get a light flush of color or layer for higher coverage without getting blotchy like I do with other cream blushes.

Balm Dotcom

I LOVE this stuff! First off, the coconut scent is amazing; It smells like actual coconuts rather than a cheap sunscreen like other lip balms. It also does a really amazing job with moisturizing my lips without being too thick. I sadly lost mine when I had half of a tube left, but I am definitely ordering another one in the very near future.

Super Pure

So a quick back story: Last September I bought a Clarisonic and it completely ravaged my skin. I have never had such bad reaction to anything in my life, and although some reviews I read warned of a purge period during the first few weeks of use but let me tell you  – this was no purge. So for months I tried all sorts of treatments, pimple related products, and moisturizers but nothing really seemed to help the acne that had formed. I tried this on a whim since it’s reasonably priced, and the modern packaging was right up my alley. I wouldn’t say it completely cured my skin issues, but it definitely helped calm things down a bit. I can’t use it all over my face because my skin is so dry, however when I see a new little pimple pop up I go after it with a few dots of this serum. I’m tempted to also get Super Glow as well since my skin is so lackluster now.

 

Have you tried anything from Glossier? Has there been anything from the brand that you loved or just didn’t click with? Let me know in the comments!

Unfortunate High End Products

img_0128

 

I feel slightly guilty writing this post because I don’t necessarily dislike these brands as a whole, but these specific products did NOT work out for me. Some of these products were really hyped up by the Youtube and blogging community, but for one reason or another they fell a little short for me. Let’s get started!

 

img_0129

 

Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette – I was so excited to buy this palette in all of its neutral glory, but the dry formula and lack of pigmentation really disappointed me. I didn’t return it, and I do still try to use it just because I feel like I should really like this – I find the color selection so interesting since there are gorgeous neutrals and a few fun colors, but no matter what primer or brush I use this palette just misses the mark for me.

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation – It seems like everyone lost their minds when this foundation came out, including me. This is a medium to full coverage foundation that is supposed to have a natural finish, however on me it turned into one big ‘ol greasy mess. It separated on me pretty badly, and accentuated every imperfection so this product gets a thumbs down for me personally. (FYI – the Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara is amazing, so not all products from this brand were a fail for me!)

Burberry Complete Eye Palette in No. 02 Mocha – This was my birthday present to myself last year and I have used this exactly once. The packaging is so unbelievably gorgeous, but like the Too Faced Palette I had pigmentation issues with this one. I can totally understand the allure and purpose of a sheer shadow formula, however these lasted for about 12 seconds after I applied them (with primer). Sad, but maybe I just need to give this a second chance knowing that they will turn out looking more natural.

Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Cream Shadow Stick in Shadow – One.Big.Splotchy.Mess. This little guy is so emollient! I first tried using this on its own and it was way too messy, but even used as just a base it didn’t work out either. The powder shadows I placed on top turned out blotchy, and everything ultimately creased on me so it’s safe to say I’m not a fan. The Laura Mercier eyeshadow sticks are fabulous though if you’re interested in a cream stick forumula!

Urban Decay 24/7 Waterline Eye Pencil in Street – I have a few UD liners and the formula on those are fantastic, so I had high hopes for this one. Sadly this is one of the toughest liner I’ve ever used. It’s pretty chalky, it drags, and it’s impossible to smudge out.

 

Special Bonus

img_0117

Laura Mercier Fall In Love Face Illuminator Collection – I bought this palette a few weeks ago and ultimately returned it. The powders themselves were so gorgeous in person, but they were so incredibly dry and flaky. I used a few different brushes but they looked chunky and disappeared quickly, so back to the store it went. This palette was about $60 USD so for that price point I really didn’t think these were worth it.

 

LORAC Mega Pro 3

img_0062

PSA – I bought a new camera and I cannot for the life of me figure out how to remove the dumb date stamp in my pictures. Once I figure it out, I’ll swap the pictures.

 

Ladies and gentleman, boys and girls – the new Lorac Mega Pro 3 has finally hit the shelves! Is is worth the $59? In short, yes – yes it is!

img_0094

 

First off, the packaging is very reminiscent of the first two Mega Pro Palettes – except this is so much easier to get dirty. Regardless, the palette itself is gorgeous with a creamy white base and metallic rose-gold lettering. I took this out of town with me over the weekend and I felt SO fancy pulling this bad boy out when I was getting ready.

I think that the formulation of the shadows (both matte and shimmer) are on par with the first two Pro palettes, in the fact that they are creamy, bendable and pigmented. There is fallout per usual, but it’s nothing ridiculous. The shade range this time around is a lot more universal in my opinion. I picked up the Mega Pro 2 last year and honestly, I have used it once. I find the shades in that one to be too light and dark (if that makes any kind of sense). I didn’t find there to be many mid-tone shades to throw on the lid, most of the shades were brow bone highlights or accent shades for me. Also, I initially appreciated the fact that the Mega Pro 2 included some unconventional colors, however after the first use I felt myself shying away from that palette. I don’t wear Lavender purples and bright oranges on a daily basis, so as an everyday woman I felt that the Mega Pro 2 wasn’t very versatile.

The Mega Pro 3 has an unbelievable amount of brown/bronze shades, so if you have 1 or more neutral palettes than I doubt this will be something you need. I have enough neutral shadows to provide a bronze smokey eye for every woman in North America, so this was not a necessity for me. But have I gotten use out of this for the past week or so? You betcha!

img_0107

I swatched a majority of the shades, and I haven’t found a true dud yet. I find that the shimmers are exactly that – shimmers. No chunky glitter in ANY of the shimmers, which is a major plus for me. A few colors like Cider and Rose Quartz come off a little more metallic, but they’re not too over the top. Also, there are a few muted pops of color (Pomegranate being the loudest color of the palette) that keep things from being too boring, which I appreciate. All in all, I feel like Lorac produced a well made and well thought out product that actually got me excited to wear eyeshadow again.

 

At the time of this post, you can find the Lorac Mega Pro 3 at Ulta stores and at Ulta.com for $59.

 

New Finds

 

It’s that time of year where I finally feel like I can start wearing my Spring and Summer products! Naturally I needed to find some new products to spice things up a bit, and the Sephora VIB Rouge sale gave me a good reason to go a little wild.

 

 

Two foundations I picked up to try are the It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+ and the reformulated YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat. I grabbed the It Cosmetics CC cream at Ulta, and it’s going to be perfect when the weather gets warm since it gives great coverage and has a high SPF! The shade medium is a pretty solid color match for when I’m a little tanner so I’m very happy about that. For the YSL foundation I’m not sure I’m completely sold yet – call me crazy, but I feel like it’s not dewy and radiant anymore! The old formula was so creamy and hydrating and I feel like the new version is more satiny. I’m going to play around more, but so far it’s just alright.

I just bought this Milk Makeup cream highlighter today, so I can’t necessarily say how well it performs yet but I still wanted to make mention of it. It’s the typical pearly champagne highlight, reminiscent of the Benefit Watt’s Up – I just wanted to try something different and I haven’t heard much of this brand yet. It does seem to be very promising based off of an in-store swatch though! I also repurchased the St. Tropez Self Tan Dark Bronzing Mousse and trust me, if I repurchase something it means it’s worth it. It gives a nice olive tan that lasts for 5 days, and if I exfoliate and use the mitt it doesn’t get streaky.

 

Way back in February I decided to pick up my first Tom Ford makeup product and it did not disappoint! I grabbed the Nude Dip palette from Neiman Marcus and while it was ridiculously expensive, it is just stunning. All shades are shimmers, but I find them to be very refined and flattering shimmers that don’t lean too young.

While we’re on the subject of eyeshadow, I also grabbed the Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Eyeshadow Palette during a lunch break at work. There are 8 shadows, 6 being shimmers and 2 being “mattes”. The mattes seems to have a hint of  glimmer, but honestly it keeps them creamy and not looking flat – so I’m okay with it. The texture and color payoff of these is unreal, they are so smooth and pretty! It’s out of stock on Sephora’s website so hopefully it comes back in stock soon!

I decided to bite the bullet and finally get the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow – does it live up to the hype though? Sort of. I actually like the sculpt side for contouring, but the glow part doesn’t amaze me unfortunately. One of my new favorite things ever – bold statement there – is the limited edition Tom Ford Sheer Cheek Duo. Holy Moley this is the most stunning blush and highlight duo! The raspberry blush and pale pink highlight work beautifully together to give supermodel skin and cheekbones no matter what skin tone you are.I am highly thinking of getting a back up of this product! LOVE THIS STUFF.

Charlotte Tilbury: Brand Spotlight

There are few things in life that tug at my heartstrings like a well packaged product, and Charlotte Tilbury is one of the masters of product packaging when it comes to makeup.

I have a weird obsession with font and colors, and I adore how Charlotte Tilbury products ooze  1920s glamour. Aside from the packaging, Charlotte Tilbury products are now some of the most prestigious and coveted makeup items on the market. For a few products I can see why, and others I’m not so sure about – let’s take a look at the little collection I’ve accumulated over the past year!


  

For starters, I only own eye products from the Charlotte Tilbury range; Mostly because they are my favorite makeup items but also because they are the most raved about items from the whole collection. Aside from the Filmstar Bronze and Glow (which I think about purchasing to this day) and the lipsticks, I find that most people and bloggers rave about the eye shadow quads. They are just so aesthetically pleasing with the deep brown and gold inside. I’m usually tempted to use these quads just to feel fancy, and at $52 USD a pop they damn well better make me feel all giddy when I use them!

The first ever product I got was the Uptown Girl Palette for Christmas last year, and boy was I smitten. The purple/blue/grey shades are unlike anything I own and they are so soft to the touch. Sadly, they turned out to be a bit powdery and honestly I don’t find that they last long on my eye lids since they tend to blend away to nothing. Would I purchase this again with my own money? No, but I also do not regret having this in the least bit.

About a month ago I purchased the Smokey Bedroom Eyes Set, which included the Fallen Angel Luxury Palette and a Rock N Khol liner for $65 USD. I’ll get to the eyeliner in a second, but the real star of this set (and basically this whole post) is the Fallen Angel Palette. Based on the performance of the Uptown Girl palette, I was a bit hesitant to buy this set but naturally I crumbled when I saw how gorgeous these shades looked swatched on other blogs. This is now one of my all time favorite shadow palettes, it’s that good.

The highlight shade (top left of the quad) is perfect since it’s not too shiny and doesn’t lean to warm or cool. The taupe (top right of the quad) and the satin black (bottom right of the quad) are equally as stunning, and I love that you can create a sultry look from using just those two shades. The bronze (bottom left) is one of the most stunning bronzes I have ever seen or used. The formula of this palette is drastically different from the usual quads, in that the shadows are a little stiffer and they seem to adhere to my eye lids much better. Each shade has a gorgeous sheen to it, which makes this a very safe palette for more mature eyes since there is no chunky glitter or extreme frost.

Left to right: Uptown Girl Palette, Rock N Khol liner, On the Prowl shadow, Fallen Angel Luxury palette, Mona Lisa Cream shadow, Supernova eyeliner

Around October I purchased the Nocturnal Cat Eyes to Hypnotize set in On The Prowl and Supernova for $39 USD. What I find interesting about Charlotte Tilbury shadows is that they all have different formulas. The single shadow in this set was very stiff and is much thinner/less opaque than the quads, however it is still a lovely product. I feel like this is an excellent shade to use to smoke up a look, but personally I find it hard to wear all over the lid. I think the glitters in the shade make it tough to use on its own, but as an outer corner shade it really brings a smokey look together.

Next up is the Eyes to Mesmerize cream shadow in Mona Lisa for $32 USD. When you swatch this is, it really out of this world. I mean it is so silky, pigmented, and really stunning. But unfortunately, when I try applying this it always ends up patchy and ultimately creases on me. I’ve tried everything with this stuff – flat brushes, fluffy brushes, and my fingers but nothing gives me an even application! If anyone has a good way of getting this on my lids, please please please let me know because I almost always end up with patches when I use this product.

I only have 2 eyeliners from Charlotte Tilbury, and both of them are from sets – don’t let this fool you though because they’re two of the best eyeliners I own. The black Rock N Khol liner from the Smokey Bedroom Eyes set is the smoothest, creamiest, darkest black liner I have ever used. It beats Urban Decay’s Perversion liner by a long shot, and that’s really saying something. The other liner is a little mini one from the Nocturnal Cat Eyes to Hypnotize, and it is a dark purple with little purple glitters running through it. I wear contacts and have super sensitive eyes, so the glitter part made me very wary but this liner isn’t scratchy or uncomfortable at all. I love this liner when I’m feeling something a little different from a black liner, but nothing too in your face.

My top recommendation would be the Smokey Bedroom Eyes Set, since you get a stunning and versatile quad with a really great liner to go along with it. What are your Charlotte Tilbury favorites?

Brand Spotlight: Hourglass Cosmetics

image

Hourglass Cosmetics is hands down my favorite brand when it comes to powder products. It seems like everything they make just perfects my complexion, even if I have 5 news zits popping up and I’m hungover from the night before.

The reason why I’m writing a post specifically on this brand is because when I first read about the Ambient Lighting Palette I kind of brushed it off as a waste of money. I never thought that a powder would make or break your look, and I kind of figured people just gave into the craze. I would swatch it at Sephora and wonder what the big deal was, they were all just shimmery powders and one of them was orange for God’s sake!

One random day I just walked in and bought it, because I was in the mood to buy something and I guess I couldn’t find anything else I was really curious about. And then it happened.

source: theblaze.com

I saw the light, the heavens above opened up to me, or whatever you want to call it; I was hooked. Every single time I used Dim Light to set my foundation I was shocked at how flawless my skin looked! It didn’t look caked up, dull, or fake, just beautiful. I have a Chanel Les Beige powder that I’ve been working through and I love it, but it doesn’t hold a candle to Dim Light. Even the Hourglass packaging has a weight and design that oozes luxury! Their products are expensive, but I never feel like it’s going to waste because it delivers everything I want.

IMG_0145

Top to Bottom, Left to Right: Mood Light, Dim Infusion Blush, Dim Light, Radiant Light, Ambient Lighting Palette, Incandescent Electra Blush

I ran through the Dim Light and Radiant Light shades so quickly in that palette, and it genuinely bummed me out because I had to scrounge around my collection for other powders that just weren’t on the same level. I purchased full sized versions of both shades, and added Mood Light to my collection.

Last week I purchased one of their Ambient Blushes in the shade Dim Infusion, and I am absolutely kicking myself for not buying the Ambient Blushing Palette when I had the chance! Dim Infusion is the most perfect peach color that just melts into your skin without being glittery. I really don’t know how they did it, because there’s no way to over-do it with this blush. It looks so natural and brilliant on my skin, tanned or not (this can be a big factor for me!). Today I marched right into Sephora and picked up another blush in the shade Incandescent Electra. Looking at it in the pan and swatching it made me so excited, so it had to come home with me. Random, but I’ve been careful to make sure I put a “control” swatch of NARS Orgasm on my arm when I’m looking at blushes to make sure I’m not just buying another duplicate; I’ve been noticing that a lot of my blushes look the same, so I’m trying to be smarter about spending money on crap I already have (HAHAHA, if I really followed this rule I wouldn’t have 85 bronze eye shadows…).

All in all, if you’re wavering back and forth on whether you want to give into the Hourglass hype I say at least try it. Have one of the Sephora associates help you out and try on one of the powders or blushes for the day and check yourself out in different lighting throughout the day. Or if you have an obsessive friend like me, ask to borrow one of the powders one day! I’ve had friends ask to try my makeup, and as long as it isn’t mascara or eyeliner (GERMS) I’m happy to share the love!

Chanel Eye Shadow, Blush, and Powder Review

100_1438

First things first: I’m sorry for being so MIA lately! I accepted an offer for a new job and I wanted to really make sure I wrapped up all of my projects at my old job before leaving. The past two weeks have been insane, but luckily I have given myself a teeny little break before I start my new position 🙂

As a little reward to myself, I bought a couple of Chanel goodies! I purchased a blush, powder, and eye shadow quad – clearly my shadow obsession has not died down in the least. Let me tell you, when you order something from Chanel they go all out with the packaging. The box everything came in? Sitting on my desk right now. It’s so pretty!

100_1436

Even the tissue paper they use makes me feel fancy! If you’re thinking about buying a thing or two from Chanel I highly suggest doing so on their website, especially since shipping is free when you spend $50 (not that hard when their blushes are $43 a pop) and you get two free samples.

100_1443

I picked up the Les 4 Ombres in Tisse Rivoli, and it is absolutely stunning in the pan. It even looks glamorous and chic despite my grubby applicators! However, performance wise this was a bit of a disappointment. The colors are exactly what I would go for and the texture is so dreamy, but they just don’t adhere to my lids very well and fade easily. The only way I can get them to stick around is by using a primer AND a Laura Mercier Caviar Stick – which is like straight cement on my eyelid. I’ve also noticed that using the sponge applicators is the best way to get decent color payoff. If I’m using these incorrectly someone help me, I want to love this!

100_1439

Next up is a Joue Contraste blush in Emotion. I was torn between this and Angelique, but I have a few pinky blushes like Angelique so I decided to try something new. I adore this color! It’s like a mix between a mauve, plum, and deep pink. It’s something I’ll wear year-round, but I can see this being perfect for Fall and Winter. Application can be slightly patchy if you’re oily, but it’s nothing a good brush can’t handle.

100_1445

100_1448

Oooh yeah, my favorite product! This is the Les Beige Healthy Glow Sheer Color in No. 30. I kept going back and forth between number 20 and 30, but ultimately grabbed the darker color because I figured if it was too dark I could use it as a bronzer. Luckily it worked out and this is my newest setting powder! The word “sheer” definitely fits this product because it doesn’t leave you with a ton of color, but it does give a little something extra. I can see a teeny bit of sparkle or sheen in the pan, but it definitely doesn’t translate on the skin. It’s just a solid product that brings your whole look together – and it looks uber fancy!

All in all I don’t regret splurging, even if I wasn’t over the moon about everything I got. I’m still going to work with that eye shadow palette because the colors are just so stunning! I’m very appreciative and fortunate to have a new position to look forward to, and I will be better about posting! I currently have a new haul in the works so be on the lookout for that! It’ll include my first personal MAC palette, a new fragrance, and other goodies!

Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray

100_1418

So this weekend I celebrated St. Patrick’s day and a very dear friend’s birthday in downtown Chicago, meaning I wanted my face to look presentable all day. Nothing kills your mood than going into a bar bathroom a few hours after putting so much effort into your makeup and feeling like a Michael Jackson “Thriller” extra is staring back at you, because your makeup is: a) smudged b) faded or c) literally melting off of your face.

In a last minute panic, I stormed into Ulta and snatched up the Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray hoping that this would provide some sort of comfort. In all honesty, I went in with intentions to get the new L’Oreal setting spray, but in all honesty the UD version was only a little more expensive.

So does it actually work, or did I basically spend $30 on water? VERY happily, this stuff lives up to the hype! I’ll admit, I was really skeptical because my face tends to eat makeup (I’ll put foundation on and 20 minutes later I’m barefaced) so I usually just deal with it and hope that the bars we end up in are poorly lit.

The bottle claims that your makeup will last for 16 hours, which is a pretty hefty but realistic claim. I want to look nice when I’m out from 11 am til the wee hours of the morning, and honestly with this stuff my blush didn’t even fade.

Will I use this every day or even every weekend? No. But when I’m out of town or going somewhere for an extended period of time I’m definitely breaking this guy out. I do wish my Ulta had a travel sized version, but I’m still glad I tried this.

Lancome Blush Subtil Palette

100_1413

Blush is something I can take or leave. I love it, but I cannot bring myself to pay an arm and a leg for it. However, when something comes in palette form I suddenly feel the urge to throw my money at it without question.

100_1415

Enter the Lancome Blush Subtil Palette in Rose Flush: This beauty comes with a contour shade, blush, and highlighter all for $43 USD. Yeah, it’s a hefty price but the quality is definitely there. The contour shade isn’t too dark and has a solid mix of cool and warm tones, which I really appreciate. I like my contours to look realistic, but this specific color also brings a little much needed warmth to my face. The blush is the star of this palette with the perfect balance of sheen and color, so you have a perfect color without looking like a grease-ball. It is my absolute favorite blush by a land-slide! The highlight shade is a naturalistic pinky-pearl color great for everyday use. I don’t think the highlighter is anything to write home about in my opinion, but if you think the sheen in the blush is intense this pairs perfectly.

I’m strongly considering purchasing more of the blushes since I think they’ll be perfect for the warmer weather (if it ever comes). It just gives me that glow I haven’t found from any other product!

What are your blush recommendations?

Marc Jacobs (P)OUTLINER and New Nudes Lipstick

Hey everyone!

After seeing the swatches and review on The Beauty Look Book, I just knew I had to grab something from the new Marc Jacobs Nude line this weekend. Everything looks so gorgeous but upon seeing things in person, I immediately grabbed the (P)OUTLINER in HONEY(BUN) and one of the New Nude Sheer Lip Gels in Moody Margot.

So beautiful and perfect for spring time, I cannot wait to finally wave good-bye to the snow and below zero weather.

100_1401

100_1403

First, let’s look at the packaging. The lip gel is encased in a beige squoval tube with a little button in the front, but it’s a magnetic closure. I think it’s so sleek and cool; it’s definitely something that I wouldn’t mind whipping out in public (that sounds so wrong). The lip liner is in a silver tube with a color indicator on the end and thankfully it twists up. I always feel like I waste half of the product for lip and eye pencils that need to be sharpened, and if I’m paying $24 for something I don’t want to waste anything!

100_1406

Both products are incredibly creamy in texture, with the lip gel feeling very balmy. I usually gravitate to lip products that are more on the sheer side when it comes to nude colors because if they’re too opaque I find they can wash me out. I like to have a little of my natural lip color peeking through so my lips don’t look artificial. The lip liner is probably my favorite because it’s a little more pinky than your typical nude. Layering these two together creates such a lovely splash of color that pulls your look together.

100_1412

L to R: (P)OUTLINER and Lip Gel combined, Lip Gel, (P)OUTLINER

As a first impression, I think these products are great and I’m very tempted to pick up another (P)OUTLINER in Primrose!

What do you guys think of the new additions? Have you picked any up/are planning to?