6 Lip Products for the Holidays

With Christmas looming a mere 12 days away, this coming weekend is bound to be filled with holiday parties galore.  Winter is when we break out darker colors, smokey eyes, and bold red lips.  While I’m not usually a bold-lipped kind of lady, being in a show and rocking a bold red lip in Pippin has forever changed my opinion of red lippies, and I now have faith that I can rock them.  Here are 6 lip products I’ve been using this holiday season.

Smith & Cult Lip Gloss in The Warning:  This is the sheerest of all of my picks, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a perfect look for the holidays.  This bright red gloss brings a pop of Santa red to your lips without forcing you to panic about getting red lipstick everywhere. It’s hydrating, not sticky, and even has a little bit of subtle glitter in there for an extra pop of party bling. ($22 @ Smithandcult.com)

Too Faced Melted Berry Liquid Lipstick: Melted berry is a stunning shade of berry red (almost deep, dark pink.  Almost.) that will surely pop on your lips this season.  I’ve found that I really enjoy the formulation of the Too Faced Liquid Lipsticks, and this is a bold shade I found I wasn’t afraid of even on the very first wear. ($21 at Ulta)

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetic Stained Gloss in Nomad: I’ll be honest, at first I thought this shade appeared to be far too dark for me to even consider trying on. Turns out that this deep colored gloss sheers out into a great winter maroon. It can be sheer or be built up for a more intense coverage.  I was incredibly surprised by how much I liked this shade, and have been wearing regularly. ($18 on Amazon)

Dolce & Gabbana Dolce Matte Lipstick in Dolce Flirt: I got a mini of this lipstick from an Influenster campaign a year or so ago, so I had to try it for review purposes. This was another product that really surprised me by how much I liked it.  This matte formula was very comfortable and non-drying. The shade “dolce flirt” was such a beautiful, flattering true red color that I loved wearing it to my husband’s office Christmas party. I felt sexy, feisty, and very festive. (available at Nordstrom $38)

Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella: This lip pencil is in a shade that feels like it was inspired by Miss Cruella DeVil herself. This is a deep scarlet red that definitely feels like the perfect bold winter lip in a long wear, top rated formula by Nars. ($26 @ Sephora)

Bite Beauty High Pigment Pencil in Pomegranate: This lip product is the one I used in my show that made me accept that I could pull off a bold red lip color.  Pomegranate is a gorgeous rich red that made my lips pop on stage, made my teeth look a bit whiter, and made me feel like a sexy little vixen going out on stage.  This is definitely a shade I will now rock on a regular basis. This product felt great on, stayed put, and lasted my entire show ( and afterward) without needing to be reapplied. This baby is the reason I’m no longer afraid to rock a bold lip, so shoutout to Bite Beauty to opening my eyes to a world beyond nudes and light pinks. ($24 @ Sephora)

What are some of your go-to lip products for the holiday party season? Do you wear the bold statement lip, or do you have some deeper neutrals that you enjoy? Let me know in the comments below. 

*This post is not sponsored. All opinions are my own. Some links may be affiliate links*

 

Too Faced Grande Hotel Cafe Review | Holiday 2016

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I’m a sucker for the holidays in pretty much any way, shape, and form, and the holiday releases from my favorite beauty brands are most definitely my weakest spot.  Since I wasn’t overly impressed with Too Faced’s releases from holiday 2015, I swore I wasn’t going to get hooked this year..and then I saw the holiday collection.  Christmas in New York is like a dream to me, and with the stunning shades and adorable packaging, I quickly broke my vow. I knew the collection had to be mine.  I ended up buying all 3 eyeshadow sets, as I couldn’t decide on one.  Today, we’re taking a look at the Grande Hotel 3 palette set.  

The Too Faced Grande Hotel is a collection of 3 individual eyeshadow palettes (Eggnog Latte, Peppermint Mocha, and Gingerbread Cookie) that can be given as gifts (there’s even a To/From label on the back of each one) or can be kept as a set and includes a deluxe mini of Better Than Sex Mascara.

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First, let’s talk about the packaging.  Grande Hotel Cafe comes in a gorgeous box that’s shaped like a hotel you’d find in the heart of NYC.  When you remove the roof and open the doors you see the stunning interior decorated with Christmas trees (complete with famous Too Faced products underneath them) and you’re clearly meant to be sitting at the hotel’s coffee bar, where you would order one of the holiday beverages the palettes are named after. It’s genius packaging, and I’m not going to lie, the packaging definitely helped sell me the products.   Read more

Sephora Play! August 2016

Sephora Play August

It’s always a happy day when my Sephora Play! box comes in the mail.  I didn’t do any posting about it last month, but I discovered a few new things that I love thanks to that box, so I figured why not start telling people whats in the subscription?  Since I canceled my Birchbox subscription last month, my Sephora box is currently the only beauty subscription I currently have. 

Each month Sephora has a theme, and August’s theme was “The Eye Openers.” As one who currently struggles with things like under eye circles and puffiness, I was anxious to see what was inside my box.  Here’s what I found:

Make Up For Ever Artist Shadow in I-544

I am a huge fan of the MUFE Artist Shadows.  They’re smooth, buttery, and blendable, so I was super excited to see this beautiful pink granite shade in my box.  I was a little less excited when I discovered it was a shade I already had in my MUF Artist Palette Vol 1.  Either way, it’s a beautiful color.  

Full Size: 0.07 oz @ $21

Sample Size: 0.02 oz

Sample Value: $6.09

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Benefit Cosmetics New Brow Collection Review

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I haven’t always been on the brow game train.  It wasn’t until rather recently that I started paying attention to my brows at all, and at first it was only because my sister complained about how lame and sparse they were.  After finding my discovery and use of the original Benefit Gimme Brow and the Anastasia Brow Wiz pencil, I truly began to appreciate how much better done brows made me look and feel.  While I don’t think I will ever have the skills to make my brows “on fleek,” I do pay attention now, and because of that I managed to obtain a few of the items in the new brow collection from Benefit Cosmetics, and I wanted to give you my two cents about them. 

While there are 10 products in the brow line (who knew we needed 10 different products?!), I am only going to be talking about 3. These happen to be the 3 that I think are most practical to own: Gimme Brow, Goof Proof Brow Pencil, and Ka-Brow cream-gel color.  While I purchased the Goof Proof pencil because I needed a new brow pencil, but I obtained the other two in sample sizes,; one from my Birchbox and one from a bonus with a Sephora order.  While they aren’t all full size, I feel this gives me enough experience with them to justify a review.

The way I want to talk about these 3 products is in terms of coverage, like with foundation. I actually really like all 3 of them for various reasons, but I found it very easy to classify each as a light, medium, or full coverage eyebrow product, and I find all 3 to be useful for different reasons Read more

Choix Subscription Box Review

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Subscription boxes are everywhere you look nowadays.  You might even be subscribed to one (or multiple) boxes.  I love them because it’s like getting little fun presents shipped right to me every month.  While the surprises are great, have you ever wished that you could choose the items that come to you in a subscription box? If so, Choix is the beauty subscription box for you.

Choix

The word Choix ((pronounced SHWAA) is French for “choice,” so the name is pretty genius.  Not only does it look pretty and sound fancy, but the name tells you a lot about the box in one word.  Choix is a beauty subscription box that sends you 5 samples of your choosing every month.  With products ranging from makeup for the entire face to skincare, it is an ideal box for the beauty enthusiast in your life who is a firm believer in “try before you buy.”

Choix carries a limited number of brand names, but the brand names are on the very high-end side, so I find that I am never at a loss for products I want to try.  Just a few names found on the Choix site are:

-NARS          -Benefit          -Bobbi Brown          -Kevyn Aucoin          -Lancome          -YSL       -Guerlain          -Cle de Peau          -Hourglass          -Clinique          -Smashbox

and more.   Read more

The Best Makeup of 2015

2015 Favorites in makeup.

2015 was quite a year, both in beauty and in general!  There were a ton of awesome products that hit the market. Some made a huge splash, and others..well, not so much.  I’ve put together a list of my personal favorites.  While many are new products from this past year, there are a handful on here that are not new to beauty, but I finally added to my collection and fell in love with them, so they’re new loves to me personally.  Let’s jump right in.

Cover Girl Ready, Set, Gorgeous Foundation: This foundation is full coverage (or mostly full, anyway), oil-free, doesn’t break me out, and is only $7.99 at drugstores and Ulta.  There’s nothing about that to not love.  While I enjoy trying higher end foundations, when I find something my skin loves for such a killer price, I stick with it.

It Cosmetics Celebration Foundation: This is a powder formula that offers the most full coverage I’ve ever seen in a powder before.  While I still need some concealer on my dark circles and breakouts, I fell in love with this because of how quickly I can put it on and be out the door.  It’s great for days when I don’t want to do a full face of makeup, but I still want to put some coverage over my troubled skin.  Totally in love with this quick fix.

Makeup Forever Full Cover Concealer: I have used this concealer for several years now, and it still remains my favorite.  Full coverage, oil free, and a little bit goes a long way, so I don’t even feel guilty about paying a high end price for it. I find it works great on my acne and scarring, however it is not the right kind of concealer for your under eye area.  Look for a slightly more hydrating formula, as the oil-free formula of this MUF concealer doesn’t work as well.  MUF did recently release a new concealer made just for those of us with under eye issues, which I do plan on trying when I’m in the market for a new under eye concealer.

ELF Contour Palette: This palette is just as good (if not better) than many of the high end contour palettes I’ve tried.  There are 4 shades: A bronze, contour, shimmer highlight, and yellow matte highlight.  The only shade I haven’t touched is the bronzer shade, but all of the others I use regularly, especially the contour shade.  When you can find a contour palette that is just a good as the ones that cost upwards of $40 and this one costs $6…well, you just go with it.

NARS Blush in Deep Throat: When I was in Japan I discovered I could get a NARS blush for a few dollars cheaper than in the US, but they were always sold out of Orgasm (my go to shade), so I had to branch out.  It turns out that Deep Throat is the perfect peachy, warm coral shade for my face.  There’s less shimmer than in Orgasm, but I actually prefer that for daily wear.  This blush is highly pigmented and will last a really long time, so it’s worth the price to me.

TheBalm Mary-Lou Manizer: I don’t know what took me so long to get this lovely piece of highlighting goodness. First of all, this product is huge, so it will last a long time.  Secondly, she’s simply stunning.  Mary-Lou is a beautiful, slightly golden highlight with multiple purposes.  I bought her as a highlighter, but one day decided to swipe her across my eyelids to see what would happen, and she made my eyes look so good with very little effort. I didn’t realize at the time that theBalm actually has “eyeshadow” as one of Mary-Lou’s functions.  She instantly brightens any look with very little product.  Dab her on your inner corners to brighten the eyes, or swipe her on your cheek bones for a stunning shimmer.  LOVE her.

Makeup Forever Artist Palette Vol 1: If I had to choose only one eye product to feature for the entire year, it would be this palette.  The 9 nude shades that come with it can create many looks from barely there to intense and smoky.  The shadows are buttery and smooth, highly pigmented, and easy to work with.  I’m definitely considering picking up another MUF palette in the new year.

Colour Pop Super Shock Shadow in Glitterati:  I’m obsessed with this product. Glitterati was the first Colour Pop shadow I tried and I was completely blown away.  It’s gold toned shimmer that is clearly meant to sparkle, but I feel it works in a sophisticated way, like glitter for the working woman.  I adore things that sparkle, so I was instantly hooked.  I find the Colour Pop shadows are best applied with my finger tips, which is fine since I use this as an all over lid color (usually blending something darker in afterwards).  For $5, you can’t go wrong.

Colour Pop Creme Gel Color in No Shame: I wanted to branch out this year and started learning how to apply gel liners.  Ultimately I opted for a deep plum rather than a black gel liner, and this one did not disappoint.  This is a formula that won’t budge, lasts all day, and has stunning color payoff.  For only $6 (price point was a big thing for me this year, as you can tell), I’m sure this product rivals many that cost several times as much. If you’re looking for a gel liner but you’re afraid to invest, I highly suggest giving Colour Pop a try.

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment: I got a mini of this product in a Sephora Favorites kit, and I totally understand why it’s in there.  This hydrating and nourishing lip formula keeps my lips feeling amazing for quite some time.  I find myself reaching for it throughout the day, either before lip color or just to refresh my dry lips, especially in the winter time. Bonus: It also contains SPF 15 for sun protection. Once I run out of this mini, there is a pretty good chance I will be getting a full size one.

Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick in Musk: Another brand I “discovered” and fell in love with in 2015 is Bite Beauty.  Among their amazing product lineup is this lipstick, which has long lasting color and is super hydrating.  I find myself reaching for this lipstick instead of lip balm sometimes, and it definitely gets the job done.  Musk is a beautiful dusty rose shade that looks natural, but gives my lips a little something more.

Fleur DeForce’s Lip Gloss in Written in the Stars:  I’m sure you know YouTuber Fleur DeForce. This year she released a book and launched a makeup line.  I went to one of her signings and she was giving out her makeup to the fans that came.  I picked out this gloss because she mentioned it being one of her favorite things in a late summer favorites video.  This formula is amazing. SO hydrating, very pigmented, and don’t even get me started on the delicious vanilla scent..  I’m completely obsessed over this product. The price is an added bonus at just under $11 on feelunique.com.

There you have it friends, my best in beauty for 2015.  Let me know in the comments below what some of your favorite products of 2015 were.

Here’s to a beautiful 2016!

Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Palette Review

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It is not news that contouring is all the rage right now.  After poking around and checking out all of my options, I decided to take the plunge on the Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Palette.

The palette comes in 2 different shades (light to medium, and medium to tan) at Sephora, but a third shade (tan to deep) is available at the Anastasia website. Each palette contains 6-0.11 oz shades and costs $40. I purchased the light to medium palette.

Palette Breakdown

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The 6 shades in the light/medium palette are:

  • Sand
  • Banana
  • Vanilla
  • Java
  • Fawn
  • Havana

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May 2015 Watch/Wish List

MayWishList

 

Ole Henriksen Sheer Transformation | ECCO Sandal | L’Occitane Ultra Matte Fluid  | MUF Artist Shadow Palette | Cane & Austin Pads | Sigma HD Brush | AG Skinny Jeans | Apt 9 Embellished Tee

 

1. Ole Henriksen Sheer Transformation ($65)- This is an oil free moisturizer that over time exfoliates and fades dark spots as well as calms and clears skin.  I’ve used minis of this and love it.  Don’t freak out about the price because this is for a 3 oz large tub.  Great value that will last quite some time.

2. ECCO “Damera” Leather Sandal ($119)- I bought a pair of ECCO sandals last summer and I love them.  My feet are high maintenance with CMT, so I need supportive footwear, and those to a stellar job.  The Damera sandals look like they’ll have the same comfort and support as my current pair, but with a bit more dressy feel with the silver shimmer.

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Tarte LipSurgence Lip Glosses Review

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I am a big fan of Tarte products.  One of my obsessions are the Tarte LipSurgence Lip tints, which were easy to use, hydrating lip crayons that left a beautiful wash of color on my lips.  Tarte now has a line of LipSurgence Lip Glosses, which offer the same hydration (and then some) in a sheer wash of high shine gloss color. For the natural/nude makeup lovers out there, these are great.  Since I tend to lean towards natural looking lips most of the time, I’m loving these.

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