Thursday, September 22, 2016

Fall Hued Eye of the Day Using Matte Shadows

Disclaimer: I purchased these.
I woke up yesterday feeling like I'd been hit by a truck. It took me a good hour of sitting on the couch drinking coffee before I could convince myself to get into the shower. When I went to put my contacts in, I dumped Dr. Bronner's liquid soap all over one, thinking I was reaching for my lens solution. It was one of those days.
stila In the Know

Naked Ultimate Basic (image source:Urban Decay)
So, I'm going to post an eye look that I did a few weeks back that turned out really well.  I focused on using matte shadows, including the vibrant terra cotta orange from stila's discontinued In the Know. Still one of my favorite palettes.  Urban Decay's new Naked Ultimate Basic matte palette looks like it has some similar shades.
I've been using tape on the outside corners of my eyes in order to get a cleaner line, and I like the results.  Sometimes shadow extended too far drags down my narrow eyes, so I'm glad I discovered this tip from YouTube. I frequently view YouTube beauty videos online right before bed, just to lull myself to sleep. Some current favorites are KathleenLights, Tati, BiohazardousBeauty, and Kimberly Clark.  How's that for variety?
Sulu Beauty + LMdB's Burnished
We don't get much fall color in Mobile, although brown leaves are falling from trees.  It's also still in the 90's during the day, so I have to pretend that it's fall. You do what you can.
At least we get a lot of sun :-) Happy fall equinox!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Online Only Matte Lip Color in Natural by e.l.f. Cosmetics

Disclaimer: I purchased this.
Now that e.l.f. Cosmetics are at Ulta, I'm dipping my toe in the pool a bit more. I decided to try one of their Online Only Matte lip colors and chose the pale mauve pink Natural. I love the concept of this color and have admired this type of shade on other fair complected lasses, but wasn't sure I could pull it off. Three dollars is not too much to risk, so here I go.
The formula doesn't feel dry and did a pretty good job of covering my darker lips without looking chalky or patchy. The texture is thin and rather emollient, so there is some settling in my lip lines but nothing that scares me. I found the 3 or so hours of wear I experienced to be comfortable, really not bad at all for a matte lipstick.
One potential con is that the thin pencil bullet does not feel very sturdy, so I would not roll out too much when you apply. I'm not sure Natural is the most flattering lip color for me, but neither did I feel like it gave me the dreaded corpse lip look that some pale shades do. Overall, I like it!
Also, I would like to note that Ulta has gotten most of my beauty money this year. I've bought nothing to date from Sephora and will more than likely be letting my VIP status drop. Ulta's loyalty program is just so much better, and I find I'm not really missing the products that are exclusive to Sephora. At least not yet.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

More August Empties and Sheet Masks I've Been Enjoying

Disclaimer: I purchased these.
I use sheet masks once or twice a week, so typically I'll have more than a handful in my monthly empties post. I wanted to do a more thorough review of the ones I really enjoyed. I buy most of my sheet masks via Memebox, especially when they are having mask bundle boxes. It's a good way to try out a variety of masks at reasonable prices.
Prelab's Skin Energy Mask in Soothing Energy includes more than a few ingredients that I like for my oily and congested skin, such as propolis extract, tea tree oil, aloe vera, and deep sea water.  The mask is supposed to help calm skin stressed by heat or environmental stressors, and considering it's the dog days of summer here in Mobile, I could use some soothing.
The mask is completely saturated and contains one bottle of enery ampoule, without much being left behind in the plastic container.  The fit of the mask is okay and I can get a good 30 minutes of wear before it starts to dry down. Memebox appears to have sold out of these, but they were reasonably priced at $2 with a BOGO offer.
bonvivant is Memebox's house brand, and they have quite the variety of masks currently priced at $1 each. I picked up a bundle set recently to try out some of the 100% Botancial masks, and so far so good.
The Niacinamide+Lime sheet mask is constructed from 100% Eucalyptus-derived materials, and I do find it comfortable to wear with a good fit.  The ingredients in this one include skin brightening niacinamide combined with revitalizing and purifying lime extract, which is also high in vitamin C. I'm not sure if I can tell any brightening going on, but my skin feels soothed and hydrated after wearing, which is about what I expect from a good sheet mask.
The Mogongtox Soda Bubble mask is supposed to deep clean pores and exfoliate skin with it's bubbling action from herbal ingredients plus carbonated water. It's gimmicky, but I can't deny it's fun. Come on now, who doesn't want to look like they've grown a white downy beard on 2/3's of their face? This is a 15 minute mask and it did leave my skin feeling clean and refreshed.  Would I use it regularly? Probably not.
Soda Bubble Mask Ingredients: Water, Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate, Glycerin, Propylen Glycol, Lauric Acid, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sodium, Hyaluronate, Dimethyl Sulfone, Potassium Hydroxide, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Betaine, Stearic Acid, Chamaecyparis Obtusa Water,Centella Asiatica Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Beta-Glucan, Papain, Carbonated Water
Banobagi has some nice masks in their Vita Genic jelly series ($2), 3 out of 4 which are featured here. Some unique features include a liposome jelly mask which is supposed to allow for better product absorption. The essence is highly concentrated with 20,000ppm  of the vitamin complex featured for each mask. 20,000ppm translates to about .68 ounces, so these are uber saturated to the point that enough essence is left in the package that you can slather it pretty much over your entire body, if you want. I'm not really one to save leftover essence, so some of mine goes to waste once I get tired of putting it on my arms, chest and neck. Seriously, there is a lot of essence in these!
Last up is Tosowoongs Pure Propolis Mask ($2), which has a relatively simple ingredient list that features propolis and niacinamide.  Propolis is a natural antibiotic, which makes it a great ingredient for blemish prone skin, and the niacinamide is a skin brightener. These are nicely saturated and fit my face well, so I like to pick up one when I place a Memebox order where I need to make the free shipping amount.
I find it quite ironic that I reach for my konjac sponge from Julep more than I do my Foreo mini Luna. These are good for about 3-4 months, so I switched to a new one for September.
A makeup sample I enjoyed in August was Sephora's Colorful blush in Sweet on You, which is a matte coral pink. I got a good 3 or 4 uses from this and I really liked it, as it was smooth with a nice satin finish on the skin. Pretty.
I've used several deluxe samples of Le Counvent des Minimes Loving Care Body Balm in the past, and I think it's a really nice lotion that is not heavy but does moisturize the skin.  I also like the fragrance, which I'd classify as a light, clean scent.  I've got more than enough body moisturizers at the moment, but this is a good one.
Last up is the AHA Care Peeling System by Somme ($4).  This is a another item that I got from Memebox (now sold out).  Step 1 of the set features a large cotton swab saturated with an AHA solution to help remove dead skin. Step 2 is a whitening ampoule enriched with herbal extracts that is supposed to help speed the regeneration of new skin cells, leaving your skin bright and clear. I could feel a tingle with the AHA solution but overall I thought it was a gentle peel.  My skin did look clear and smooth the next day so I do think it helped.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Empties! Products I Used Up or Tossed in August

Yes, it's taken me until mid-September to post my empties from August. Time is flying by per usual and better late than never, I guess. So let's get going!
Love my bareMinerals Complexion Rescue in Natural 05 (full review here), and will repurchase once I go through my other open foundations.  Which could be a while.
The Clean Face Oil Control Essence from The Face Shop (full review here) made for a good foundation primer, so I found it easy to use up.  Did it help control oil? Not enough that I would give a glowing endorsement in that area, and while I liked it, I don't feel the urge to repurchase.
I recently reviewed the Ciracle Vitamin Source C-20 here, so I won't go into much detail other than to say I liked it.  The big tub you see in the group empties shot is my First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream, which I like using as a body moisturizer.  There was a bit left in the tub but it had gone bad, so it was time to toss. I now like using Jojoba seed oil as a body moisturizer, so I won't be repurchasing.
The Bella Bronze Liquid Illuminator by Le Metier de Beaute was one of my first purchases from the brand over 3 years ago (review here), and it's finally gone. RIP.
I did not care for the  rose/violet/saffron scent of the Arlesienne hand cream by L'Occitane, although the formula is good.  Since it was just a sample size, I managed to get through it.
I wasn't sure about the Meyer Lemon Creamy Cleanser by Andalou Naturals at first, but I ended up really liking it. I think of cream cleansers as being for dry skin, but this one is targeted towards normal/combo and my oily skin did fine with it.  I used it as a second cleanser after removing my makeup with a cleansing oil, and it left my skin soft and clean without feeling stripped. It contains some really nice organic ingredients (aloe leaf juice is the 1st ingredient and Manuka honey is the 3rd), yet is reasonably priced at $12.95.  Andalou Naturals continues to impress me with their skin care products!
Gold leaf in blotting paper - what will they think of next?  This 3-pack sampler of the Aburatorigama Japanese beauty papers by Tatcha did a great job of removing oil without disturbing my makeup, and looking at the little gold flecks definitely made me feel rich/decadent.  A set of 30 will set you back $12, and if money were no object....

The Essence eye primers in I Love Stage and I Love Colour were a big disappointment to my oily lids (full review here), so they are getting tossed. Also getting tossed is Benefit's They're Real Push Up Liner in brown, which I found temperamental/difficult to use.
Clinique's Bottom Lash mascara was a favorite and will definitely be getting repurchased at some point in the future.  It does not smudge on me and lasted for quite a while, plus it's reasonably priced at $11.50.  I liked the brown but will try the black next.
Last for today (yes, more will be coming, as I want to give some face masks a more thorough review), is Le Metier de Beaute's Peau Vierge concealer.  Love this stuff, sad to see it go. It's pricey ($95), which means I won't be repurchasing, as I just cannot justify spending that much on a spot concealer.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Project Pan 2 Month Update!

First of all, I'm not sure why I feel the need to put an exclamation point on my Project Pan posts, but I do. There is just something so satisfying about actually finishing a makeup item, especially when there are a surplus of items languishing unloved. So let's see what progress I was able to make in two months.
If you missed my Project Pan announcement post, you can see it here. I've brought back 10 of the 12 items to show you my progress, and let's start with the 2 items that are down to their very last dregs! The bareMinerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream has become one of my favorite foundations, and after I could no longer squeeze any out I decided to cut it open. It felt like there was still some left, but I wanted to see how much.

There was enough for a few weeks more use (considering I rotate foundations fairly frequently), so I scrapped it out and put it into an empty container. I also used my Le Metier de Beaute (LMdB) Peau Vierge concealer down to the rim. I was curious how much was beneath the rim so dug it out with a knife.  A fair amount, actually, so I saved it to a container. It's a favorite, after all:-)
Let's continue with some more favorite LMdB products. I use the Peau Vierge pressed powder as my setting powder every day, and the metal part of the pan is slowly growing. It's going to take a while to finish this.
I use LMdB Nude eyeshadow every day after I apply eye primer to smooth my eye area and prep it for other shadows.  It's the same color as my skin and such a nice matte formula. I've hit pan!
I also made some progress on  LMdB's Shimmery Sand-White. Considering I mainly use it for an inner eye or brow highlighter, it's going to take a while to get through this. I originally thought I could use it as a face highlighter but it has some small silver shimmers in it that are larger than I like for a facial highlighter. I also tried using it mixed with a facial oil (hence why there are some scraped bits) but again the larger shimmer bits just don't work for me in that capacity.
The Inika brow pencil in Blond is slowly shrinking.  In July there was still a logo/writing near the tip, which is gone now:
I've made pretty good progress on my Buxom Cherry, which looked like this in July:

I keep Cherry in my purse and use it at least once a day. Looks like I'm down to 1/3 of the tube, which I should be able to knock out by my next update.

I did not make much, if any progress with Sunday Riley's Sunday, however:

Buxom's April did see some usage, although I reach for Cherry more.

I used Tarte's Energy fairly consistently and that sucker is lasting longer than I thought it would. I am enjoying it though, so there's that. Now, if I can finish Cherry, April, Energy by my next check in I'll add some replacement products, but overall I'm happy with my progress!