August Favorites

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Happy Friday, everyone!

We finally made it to the long weekend! I’m leaving for a mini vacation to Nashville with my boyfriend tomorrow morning which I’m thrilled about, so if I’m not super active over the next few days please bear with me!

I can’t believe that it’s already September and that it’s already time for another monthly favorites post. August was a whirlwind but I was able to test out a few new-to-me products that I’ve really been digging. Without further ado, lets dive in!

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Colourpop She Eyeshadow Palette: This has truly been my holy grail throughout the month of August. I’ve barely touched any other eyeshadows in my collection because I’ve been loving these so much. The shades are all so stunning and complement one another effortlessly. I have a feeling that this will continue to get a ton of love from me throughout the upcoming autumn months, as the deep burgundies and brown shades are quintessential fall colors.

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Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Paaarty: This is the blush that came in the Tarte birthday gift from Sephora, and I’ve been using it nonstop! It’s the perfect neutral toned blush for days where I don’t want super flushed cheeks but also don’t feel like applying bronzer. I also find that this blush lasts on my cheeks all day, which is perfect for week days when I don’t wear setting spray just to go to work.

Jouer Rose Quartz Highlighter: This highlighter is undeniably stunning. I know I raved about it over in my review post, but let me just reiterate how special this highlighter is. It is every blogger’s fantasy product – how could you ever say no to rose gold!? It really brings a little something special and unique to my face on days where I’m not wearing eyeshadow or doing any bold makeup look. The pink undertones to the highlighter brings a gorgeous flush to the face, while the golden shimmer catches the light beautifully to draw attention to the cheekbones. I am obsessed!

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Essence Get Big Lashes Waterproof Mascara: I finally ran out of my beloved Essence Lash Princess Mascara and was about to buy a back-up before I remembered that I had originally purchased it in a pack of 3 with two of Essence’s other mascaras. I chose to use the Get Big Lashes mascara throughout August mostly because it was waterproof, and I spent a lot of time out on a boat this month. Although the wand is a little too hefty for my liking, it definitely coats all of my lashes well. I do experience a bit of clumping on my lower lashes since the applicator does not have any fine, precise bristles, but my lashes brush out well with a lash comb. This definitely makes my lashes look thick and does give me quite a bit of length at the same time. It also does not smudge/transfer as much as the Lash Princess formula does on me, like due to its waterproof properties.


What products were you loving this month? Leave a comment below so I can check them out!

Review: Nyx Faux Black Eyeliners

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Happy Wednesday, everyone!

I hope your weeks are off to a splendid start. I’ve had a super busy week so far, but yesterday was my boyfriend and I’s three-year anniversary so it was nice to settle down and celebrate for a night!

Today’s post will be a review on the Nyx Faux Black Eyeliners. My go-to makeup look on mornings when I don’t want to do anything crazy with eyeshadow is using fun, colored eyeliner. The Faux Black Eyeliner line caught my attention because I gravitate towards darker-toned liners. I’m used to using black eyeliner to apply winged liner nearly every day, so I don’t feel like myself when I wear a super bright or light eyeliner shade. The Nyx Faux Black line contains matte liner shades that are a twist on the average black liner, ranging from rich midnight blues, purples, olives, and burgundies. I bought the shades Oxblood, Onyx, and Obsidian.

Nyx Faux Black Eyeliner swatches. From top to bottom: Onyx, Oxblood, Obsidian

Nyx Faux Black Eyeliner swatches. From top to bottom: Onyx, Oxblood, Obsidian

Onyx: Steely, cool-toned, forest green. This shade has some serious gray undertones – in some lighting it even looks dark gray rather than green.

Oxblood: Deep red shade with purple undertones. This isn’t as deep of a burgundy shade as I expected so I don’t use it on my upper lash line as much as the other two shades, but I still love using this in my waterline to complement eyeshadow looks.

Obsidian: Purple-toned navy blue shade. This is a very versatile shade, but it looks absolutely stunning on brown/green eyes!

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These liners are all in crayon form but are super creamy. The formula reminded me quite a bit of the Colourpop Crème Gel liners, but the Nyx ones are far less fragile than the Colourpop ones. The Nyx Faux Black liners glide on smoothly, and even after pressing down firmly I haven’t experienced any breakage whatsoever. They are also intensely pigmented!

The tips of the Faux Black Liners are not super sharp, meaning I cannot get a crisp, precise wing using these. Instead I like to smudge them on my upper lash line or use them in my waterline to complement eyeshadow looks. I do find it difficult to tightline with these as well since the tip is a bit chunky, so I like to use a sharp-tipped black pencil or liquid liner to fill in the gap between my lashes and the Faux Black liner on my upper lashline. This looks seamless since all of the shades have dark undertones. It is worth noting that the tips of the liners do get reshaped easily since they are so soft and creamy, so be sure that you have an eyeliner sharpener on hand to maintain the liners’ pointed shape.

The one real drawback I’ve found with these so far is that they do move around once my eyelids get oily throughout the day. While most of the liner remains on my upper lash line, some will smudge upwards towards my crease. However, if I apply these liners on top of eyeshadow primer, I don’t experience any slipping or sliding at all – they look perfect from the time of application until the time I remove my makeup at night! When I apply these in my waterline, I do find that they last quite a while; however, I experience some minimal fading around the 6 hour mark of wear-time.

Overall, for a drugstore eyeliner, I was quite impressed by these. I really love the shade selection that Nyx offers for the Faux Blacks line, and will likely pick up more shades in the future. If you’re someone who has an aversion to bold, black eyeliner, consider giving these a shot!


Have you tried any of the shades from the Nyx Faux Black Eyeliner collection? Which are your favorites? Leave a comment below!

Three Affordable Brands to Try More From

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Happy Friday, everyone!

We finally made it to the weekend! I'm going home to visit my family this weekend and I couldn't be more excited. 

Today's post is about three makeup brands that I want to try more makeup products from. My makeup collection is quite varied as I subscribed to a beauty service for quite some time, and through that I discovered a lot of really great brands. We all know I love affordable makeup, and through my makeup journey I've found several affordable brands that are fantastic quality. Three of those brands are Palladio Beauty, Pixi Beauty, and Makeup Revolution.

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Palladio Beauty: As you can see from this picture, I dropped my one and only blush from Palladio right before taking this photo. Palladio is a drugstore brand that makes a variety of products. This is one of their Baked Blushes which are super affordable at only $7 a pop. I have the blush in the shade Blushin', which the most gorgeous pink shade with peachy shimmer. It stays on all day and gives my face a healthy, flushed glow without needing highlighter. This is one of my absolute favorite blushes in my collection. I want to pick up more shades. I also really want to try their Crushed Metallic Eyeshadows - the shades Stellar, Meteor, Supernova, and Eclipse are calling my name!

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Pixi Beauty: Pixi is a unique brand that makes kick-ass skincare AND makeup products! I absolutely love that all of their products are made to enhance people's natural beauty. They don't make anything gimmicky, and you can tell that a lot of TLC goes into formulating all of their products. Their makeup and skincare is also friendly for people of all ages which can be super hard to find. The Glow Tonic is my skin savior - it makes my skin look healthy and glowy without needing any makeup. I also really like their Flawless Beauty Primer that I received a sample of from Ipsy. Out of their skincare range, I really want to try their Glow and Hydrating Milky Mists, their Glow Peel Pads, and their Glow Mud Cleanser. In terms of makeup, I want their ItsEyeTime palette, Fairy Dust pigments, Glow-y Powder highlighters, and their Lower Lash Mascara.

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Makeup Revolution: Makeup Revolution is a drugstore brand sold in Ulta that is notorious for creating spot-on dupes for high end products. They've even gotten themselves in hot water a few times for mimicking products too closely. I have two of their Vivid Baked Highlighters which are phenomenal. I also have one of their highlighting palettes (Golden Sugar 2 Rose Gold Blush Palette) and one of their blush palettes (Ultra Blush & Contour Palette in Hot Spice), both of which are of super high quality. What I want to try next are the Blushing Heart Highlighters (dupes for the adorable Too Faced heart-shaped highlighters), their New-Trals vs Neutrals Eyeshadow Palette, and their Flawless Ultra 32 Eyeshadow Palette.


What are your favorite affordable brands? Have you tried anything from these three? Leave a comment below!

Review: Bite Beauty Multistick in Mascarpone

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Happy Wednesday, everyone! 

I haven't written a review in quite a while and have been playing around with some new goodies lately. Today's post will be focused on Bite Beauty's Multistick in the shade Mascarpone. Bite's Multistick is an ingenuitive product in that it has multiple functionalities. You can easily wear these as an eyeshadow, blush, or lipstick. I'm all for a good multipurpose product, but admittedly I was skeptical that this would work well in each of the individual areas of the face.

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In the packaging is a cream stick product with a flat edge, unlike typical bullet cream lipstick designs. The Bite "B" is classily embossed directly onto the cream product. The sturdy packaging it comes in is typical of Bite, with its velvety matte feel a la Nars. The cap snaps back onto the tube magnetically which is something I love. This ensures that the tube is truly closed so the product will not dry out at all unexpectedly.

There is a huge shade range for the Multistick, which was a bit daunting when I was faced with all my options laid out in front of me at Sephora. Bite is known for having a fabulous shade range in their lipsticks, so I'm not surprised by this at all. In the end I decided on the shade Mascarpone, as this is a deep, neutral-toned pink shade that I imagined would look equally lovely on the eyes, lips, and face. 

The description of the Multistick on Sephora's website indicates that it applies like a cream and wears like a powder, which is precisely what I've found through my experience. Interestingly, it claims to be formulated with 35% powder, which is something I've never seen before in a cream product. This unique formulation also makes it easy to be applied with either the fingers or a brush well, which was also surprising to me. 

I initially began using this as a blush as that was the technique I knew I would utilize most often. Initially the cream feels a bit sticky when I apply it on my cheeks, but it blends out effortlessly with my fingers or a blush brush and feels weightless on my face. It somehow manages to not lose the hydrating properties of the cream formulation even after it transforms into a powder. This means that it does not settle into my pores or the fine lines in my face. It also stays put on my cheeks all day, even without setting spray or powder. A huge win in my book!

On the lips, this performs like a stain more than any other type of lip formulation. Despite the fact that it settles down to a powder-like feel, I don't notice it drying out my lips the slightest bit. It was much more comfortable than I expected! As expected, this is definitely not a kiss-proof, eat-proof lipstick like a liquid matte would be. I don't like applying this directly to my mouth as it's often covered in foundation from using it as a blush; instead, I prefer to rub some onto my fingers then pat my fingers onto my lips. This makes for a very natural appearing lip. If you would prefer a more pigmented lip look, the Multistick can be applied directly onto the lips. 

The initial creaminess of the Multistick does lead to some creasing when applied directly onto the eyelids. I always need primer whenever I'm applying eyeshadow since my lids are so oily, and this helps prevent some of those creasing issues, as does setting the lid with a skin-toned powder first. 

As you can tell in the swatch above, the Multistick in Mascarpone is quite pigmented when swatched directly but easily blends out to a lovely flush. I blended it with my fingers for this photo. 

Overall, I am absolutely obsessed with the Bite Multistick! I will get a ton of use out of it, especially applying it as either a blush or lipstick. This is the perfect multi-use product for mornings when I am running late and need a quick splash of color to liven up my face. I am shocked that one product can so easily and effectively serve so many purposes. Bite really nailed the formulation on this one, and I will 100% be purchasing more shades in the future - I'm looking at you, Brioche, and Biscotti!

Have you tried the Bite Multistick yet? What are your thoughts? Leave a comment below!

Ways to Get the Most Bang for Your Buck

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Happy Friday everyone!

I hope you're all excited for the upcoming weekend! I'm back for part 2 of this week's smart spending mini-series. Today's post will be focused on how to stretch your dollar out as much as humanly possible, to ensure you're getting all your money's worth and more. You can find part one's post on how to save money when buying makeup here.

I look for a good deal wherever I can. I am all about coupons, even if it just means saving pennies. Before going shopping, I scour the internet for whatever discount codes or coupons I can find to ensure that I'm making a smart purchase. Over time I've gathered some tips have proven tried and true to me time and time again when buying makeup, so now I am sharing them with all of you! Without further ado, lets dive in.

  1. Coupon codes: It took me a long time to learn that coupon codes are bountiful and readily available on the internet. I almost always find some kind of code when shopping online from Ulta or Sephora. Ulta almost always offers $3.50 off $15 codes to save you some cash instantly. But for the most part, I've found that most codes from makeup retailers give you additional samples, especially so for Sephora. I discover a lot of new favorite products through testing samples out, so this is perk is a huge plus in my book. To facilitate finding the best coupon codes for you, browse through the ones listed on the Retailmenot website - just beware that some codes will not work. Alternatively, if you use Google Chrome or Firefox and would rather download a browser extension, I would highly recommend using Honey. This extension automatically tests out coupon codes for you to save you the hassle of sorting through dud codes.
     
  2. Rebate websites: It's honestly shocking how much money I save through cash-back websites. I personally am a huge fan of Ebates. By shopping through this website, you receive a certain percentage back in cash simply by making a purchase as you normally would! Ulta and Sephora usually offer anywhere from 3-5% cash back on Ebates. However, on occasion double cash back is offered through Ebates, meaning you can get anywhere from 6-10% back from your purchase! Ebates also offers in-store cash back deals as well that you can access by paying for your purchase via credit card. Since using Ebates, I've already been sent a $20.68 check in the mail from my cash-back savings. If you want to sign up for Ebates, consider using my referral link here. I am not sponsored by their service by any means - this is 100% honest feedback from my experience own personal experience!
     
  3. Gifts with purchase: One of the major perks of shopping at Ulta is that they often offer free gifts with purchase. If you're planning on dropping some dough all on one brand, consider waiting until a sweet gift with purchase is offered. I once got a Clinique cleanser with my purchase of a bronzer! Ulta also offers giant bags of miscellaneous samples a few times a year with a $50 or $75 purchase, so that is totally worth waiting for as well.
     
  4. Subscription services: If you're a newbie to the makeup world and are looking to beef up your makeup collection on a budget, consider testing out a subscription service. There are so many available on the market right now to choose from (Ipsy, Glossybox, Boxycharm, Sephora Play and Birchbox are just a few!) I was subscribed to Ipsy for about two years when I was first getting into makeup and I absolutely loved it. For only $10 a month, I was able to test out a variety of amazing beauty products. This is a much more affordable option than paying for full-sized products that you're not even sure you'll like or feel skilled enough to use initially.
     
  5. Makeup sets: The makeup box sets that debut around the holidays are a fantastic way to test out many different products on a budget. These often contain generous sample-sized products that you can test out at a completely reasonable price before committing to purchasing the full sized version. I'm a huge fan of the Sephora Favorite sets - they've helped me test out makeup from a ton of different brands to determine which characteristics of products (finishes, shades, etc.) work best for me personally.
     
  6. Check price per ounce: Always be sure to compare the price per ounce when considering buying minis over full-sized products. Sometimes price-tags are misleading, and buying multiple mini versions of a product is actually a better deal than purchasing the full sized version. In these cases, the full-sized version has a more expensive unit price than the minis. A good example of this is the Smashbox Photo Finish Primer available from Sephora. The full-sized product is $36 for 1 oz. However, the travel-sized version is $16 for 0.5 oz. If you bought two travel-sized products, you'd spend $32 for 1 oz rather than $36 - a $4 difference! Be sure to be wary of that pesty price per ounce to save yourself some money in the long run.

That completes this week's mini-series on how to be a smart consumer when purchasing beauty products! I hope you learned something that will help will be a more conscious shopper in the future. Be sure to leave any helpful tips you have in the comments below!