The Make Up Bag: March 5th, 2021

Welcome once again to the Weekly makeup bag post.  I have a surprise for you this week.  I have decided that this may be my last makeup bag post for a while.  I had several revelations this week and it has led to a few changes and proposed changed.  For a while things may be a bit unsettled as I shake them out and play around with them.

Now don’t worry, I will still be discussing makeup, however I am going to try to add my list of products and a picture of what I did with them to my Daily posts. While I started the Makeup bag as a way to not get overwhelmed by the number of products and so that I could rotate them well, lately I have been finding it is a little too regimented for me. 

Take my foundation this week.  This week I used the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Cream foundation.  I am glad I did, however it is more of a full coverage foundation than I usually use.  It prompted me to do a more elaborate eye look  with the Huda Beauty Palette than I have done with eyeshadow in a while. Which I really liked. 

However mid way through the week I found myself wanting a lighter look, both with the shadow and with the foundation.  I found I could still get the lighter look with the Huda Beauty Palette, but I needed to switch out my foundation.  I ended up pulling the NYX Bare With Me foundation in to help out. I really enjoy both foundations, but I want to be able to decide what look I feel like wearing that day rather than just limiting myself to what was in the bag.  I’m sure there will be weeks where I use the same product repeatedly, but I want that to be a choice, not a requirement.

Bare faced left, One of my full face looks for this week.This used the Neutrogena foundation

The second reason is that I have several sample sizes that I want to use up before I purchase the full size of the product.  To do so I will need to use them more often.  In addition sometimes when new things come in I want to try them right away rather than waiting a week.  So I am going to try adding the makeup to the Daily post and we will see how that works out.  I’ll still break out new products as they arrive into full posts, since I love doing my reviews but This post will be altered starting next week.

A softer look, only swapping out the foundation and lip. This used the NYX foundation and the Fenty Lip Gloss

This week however I had a bag full of products that were either new to me or ones I don’t reach for very often.  The first new product was the primer.  I used the Illamasqua Beyond the Veil PrimerThis link will take you to my full review, but I have to say, I liked it, but I think I prefer the regular Hydra Veil Primer from Illamasqua.  Both are nice, I just have more fun with the clear jelly.

The foundation I mentioned was the Neutrogena Cream foundation.  It is nice and more full coverage than I expected.  It felt a little greasy going on but once blended in the greasiness faded.  It is a little light for my skin tone, but it did lead me to a less natural look than usual. Which was a nice change of pace.  I did swap it out several days for the NYX Bare with Me mostly because I really do like a lighter look during the day when I am working. As always I adored the NYX foundation formula. It feels like you are wearing nothing at all and does a great job covering what I wanted covered.

For my bronzer I dipped back into the Ace Beaute Bronzer palette.  I’ll admit I pulled this one out because I was doing a declutter of my bronzer/ face palettes this week and I honestly couldn’t remember if I liked it enough to keep or not.  So I tried it.  And I did like it better than I thought I did. It actually worked really well for me and it is one that I will be keeping and using more often.

My blush came in the Glam Bag X from IPSY and it was the Patrick Ta Monochromatic moment blush.  This is my first Patrick Ta blush and I think I will have to write out a full post on it.  I thought it was going to be too light for me and it was more pinky in tone than I usually prefer, but it worked well and I very much enjoyed using  it this week.  It is a huge blush so I think it is going to last me a really long time.

For highlighter I pulled the Huda Beauty Highlighting palette in Pink Sands out of the drawer.  I’ll be honest, I forgot about it.  It was buried in my eyeshadow drawer and I found it when I was decluttering and organizing.

I really enjoyed using it this week as it is a really good set of highlighters.  I can tell that if used on a regular basis, I will drift to the deep gold toned product more than anything else.  The silvery one and the brighter gold were just too bright for me and the pink faded into my skin tone with very little to show for it.  The gold, was amazing. I could very much see purchasing that as an individual highlighter.

My concealer was the Maybelline Age rewind concealer I love this formula. It is hands down the best drugstore formula I have tried.  It doesn’t crease and accentuate my fine lines and it is a fantastic lid primer.  I have had it long enough though that I think I may need to keep using it up so that I can use it before it expires.  Once it does I will be buying a new one. I just want to use as much of this product up as a I can before I have to repurchase it.

My eyeliner was the Ciate London Stamp and Drag eyeliner.  The formula of the liner is good and it is the same formula in their other eyeliners, which I like. The main reason I put it in the bag this week was that I wanted to play around with the stamp.  Some days were better than others but like anything else, with practice I got better at using it.  Once I did, I found I really liked it.

My setting powder was a sample size from Lottie London.  This was my first Lottie London product and I have to say, I am not a fan. The powder was well powdery on the skin and left a white cast.  I actually felt bad about saying other powders left a white cast after using this. 

small holes that became clogged very quickly

In addition, there are only three really small holes to get the powder out of so it took FOREVER to get enough product through them.  I am sure there are more holes in them for the full size, at least I really hope so, but the powder drove me bonkers and about midweek I swapped it for the Ciate London Extraordinary Setting powder.  I enjoyed it much more.

For my pressed powder, I have to admit, I opened a new compact of No7 Perfect Light Pressed powder.  I know I said I was going to wait, but I couldn’t.  It was just right there calling to me and I succumbed.  So I opened it and remembered how much I actually love that pressed powder.  It never looks powdery and absorbs oil with a quick mid-day pat. I was very happy to see it again.

As I mentioned before my Eyeshadow Palette this week was the Huda Beauty Rose Gold Remastered palette.  It also came in the Glam Bag X and quite frankly makes me very excited to see what comes in May’s box. This link will take you to the full post but the quick summation is that I absolutely loved it.


I will be reaching for it quite often. The formulas were pigmented, soft, blendable and they stayed in place all day.  Plus look at those colors. They just say Mimsy all over them

For this new and mostly new bag, I opened the Pat McGrath Fetisheyes Mascara.  I know it was an excuse, but I took it.  It is a really good mascara. It didn’t flake and it thickened and lengthened beautifully.  It is a mascara that I will enjoy using to the very last drop.  Provided I can get to the very last drop within six months.  I am going to try though. While it is good and I will enjoy using it, it isn’t such a fantastic formula that I will feel compelled to repurchase it though. It is good enough to use and if it happened to be on an IPSY ad on I would add it on. I’m just not sure I’d pay $30 for it. There are so many really good mascaras out there that do exactly what this does, some with even better performances that I’m just not sure that price is justified. I am very happy I actually got to try a Pat McGrath product but when this is used up, I won’t be buying it again.

My brows were also a new product this week and that was the Marcelle Nano Eyebrow Pencil.  It came in a Birchbox a while back and I decided now was the time to try it.  Marcelle is a brand that is hit or miss for me.  Sometimes it is fabulous, and sometimes it fizzles. This, I have to say was a hit.  The formula was good.  It wasn’t too dry or chalky and the color worked well with my brows.  I am going to have to sit down and do some serious maintenance on my brows, but the product was nice.

For the lips I had two products this week.  The first was the About Face liquid lipstick in Take Aim. (it is what I am wearing in the top photo above)  It is a lovely dark and highly pigmented shade and one I will get a lot of use from. When ordering remember that the outer glass packaging is frosted so the product looks lighter in the packaging than it is coming out. As a liquid lip it went on smoothly and dried down really fast.  It wasn’t terribly drying on the lips but once it dried down it wasn’t moving anywhere. It stayed in place all day.  I t moved around a little when I ate something a little greasy, but that is something that happens with most liquid lips.  It was very comfortable formula to wear and I was quite impressed.

The second lip product I had around this week was the Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb in Diamond Milk Lip Gloss. (It is in the photo of the softer makeup day pictured above.)I really enjoy using this lip gloss it feels really juicy on the lips but not super sticky.  As a gloss you have to re-apply it periodically if you want the shine to remain, however even when it wears off my lips feel as though they had an extra burst of hydration.  I like the formula.  I often forget I have this lip gloss though because it is slightly too wide to stand up in my lip stick holder so it goes into the drawer.  I might have to figure out a way to keep it out so that I don’t forget it.

To lock everything in place, I used the Pore Professional Super setter Spray.  While it is something I have used before and enjoy, it is a relatively new product and so I decided it counted.  Besides I didn’t have a new to me setting spray to try out and as I have several open that I am trying to use up and clear out, I didn’t think it a good plan to go and buy a new one.

So that was this week’s make up bag.  Next week I will start with the smaller daily posts instead of the weekly one.  If it goes well, I’ll continue and if it doesn’t I will return to this format or try something else.  It may be in a state of flux for a while. As always feel free to let me know what you think and if you see me mention a product that you want broken out in a more full individual post let me know.   For now I am off to editing land and will see everyone back here later today for Face Mask Friday.  See you then.

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The Make Up Bag: February 26th, 2021

The Makeup Bag used February 20th – 26th, 2021

This week’s makeup bag was a strange one. I wanted to test a flat top foundation brush (from F.A.R.A.H this is the link to the review if you are interested) so I chose five separate foundations for the week. I chose five that I really like and know how they perform for me so that it would be easier to test the brush.  It also meant that I didn’t consistently use any single foundation this week.  It was kind of a fun change. It also gave me an excuse to use several of my favorite foundations.

The Foundations this week

All of the foundations I used this week I really liked.  I used the powder Foundation of KVD Vegan Beauty.  This one is really good if you are in a rush as you just brush it on like powder, add a dash of blush and go.  I also used my Kristofer Buckle Triplicity Foundation.  I will pretty much use any excuse to go ahead and add that to my makeup bag as it is a really nice, really easy formula.  My excuse was that the stick formula makes it a cream foundation. 

I actually had a cream foundation in my dressing table and quite frankly I forgot all about it.  It is the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Compact Makeup.  I used it, really liked it, put it in the drawer and forgot it.  I think I may keep this one out this week to use it a bit more.   For my liquid foundations I used the e.l.f Acne Fighting foundation and the Pretty Vulgar Cool AF Lava Water Foundation.  I love both of them and will reuse them until they are gone and then repurchase. 

I wanted two products in each category but I only had the one powder foundation.  The KVD Vegan Beauty powder foundation is one I also need to reach for more often.  As you can see I have the old packaging on it and should probably use it up.  In certain lights you can see the outline of pan beginning to show through so I’m pretty confident I can use it up this year, even with switching out my foundations.  I just need to remember to keep it on the list.

While the focus was on the foundation this week, it clearly wasn’t the only product I used.  For primer I used the last of my Benefit Porefessional Pearl Primer.  It was the last of the sample and now it will journey to the empties bin. I like the primer and will be purchasing it in the full size as soon as I’ve cleared out a few of my primers. A could of them are actually pretty close to being used up so it shouldn’t be too terribly long.

Benefit also supplied my setting spray this week.  I used the Porefessional Super Setter.  I love the fine mist a d setting power of this setting spray.  But why am I mentioning it this early in the post, you might ask? Good question.  Normally I end with the setting spray, but things got a little discombobulated this week. Plus, I also had to use it with my eyeshadow. 

This week I used the Teddy Boy eyeshadow palette from Butter London.  The shimmers didn’t really show up terribly well unless I wet my brush or finger for application so it was the Porefessional Supper setter to the rescue.  While I ended up using it to set my face, it also helped out my eyeshadow palette.  This link will take you to the full Teddy Boy Palette review.  It isn’t my favorite palette but it is different from anything else I have in my collection, so I am okay with keeping it a while. It survived my Spring Declutter.  We’ll see what happens next time I sort through my palettes.

I used my Pretty Vulgar concealer this week.  It is a really good concealer and it worked well as a eyeshadow primer as well.  I think the tube is now about half empty.  It isn’t low enough that I need to keep it around to use up, so I’ll trade it out next week, but it is about at the halfway point which makes me sad as it is one of my favorites.  I may have to do a full face of Pretty Vulgar makeup before it goes out.  This is one of those brands that I have almost a full face of products to use.  At least as long as the concealer lasts.

My bronzer and blush were both trial sizes this week.  I used my NARS in the shade Laguna as my bronzer and my bareMinerals Bounce and Blur Blush in the shade Mauve Sunset as my blush.  I adore both of these products and I have to say this year you will be seeing a lot more of these tow samples because I won’t allow myself to purchase the full size until I use the samples up. 

Mostly because I know that once I have the full size, I won’t actually use the samples any more and they will be wasted.  Plus I know that if I can use the samples up then I will definitely use the full size.  With these two it isn’t a hardship as I really enjoy both products.  In fact I fall more in love with the bareMinerals Bounce and Blur each time I use it. It is the absolute best of both powder and cream blushes combined into one. They are both very bendable and ae easy to work with. I highly recommend both of them.

I had a pressed powder from e.l.f and a loose powder from Ciate London this week.  With the Ciate London Extraordinary Setting Powder, I used the translucent version.  I like the fact that it doesn’t have the coconut scent that the Vacaay powder does, but quite frankly I prefer the Everyday Vacaay version, even with the coconut.  I actually have an unopened container in my drawer, but I wanted to use this travel size up first. 

The regular extraordinary powder can leave a little white on the skin if you aren’t careful.  The Vacaay version doesn’t have this issue.  As long as you go back in with a brush it is fine, I just thought it a little odd that one had the smidge and the other didn’t.  The e.l.f. pressed powder also had this issue. I really like the formula of the elf HD pressed powder though as one it is in place it really keeps the shine from coming through and doesn’t look powdery. I think in the future with the elf I would get the tinted powder rather than the translucent.  I like the formula but the translucent does tend to be a little too white on my skin. 

My eyeliner this week was the Tarte Double Take eyeliner.  One end is a liquid pen and the other is a soft pencil.  I enjoyed both sides this week and will certainly be using this again.  Which is a bonus for me as I have a second unopened liner that came in this month’s Boxycharm waiting for me to finish this one. While I did an eyeshadow palette declutter I think my next declutter may end up being eyeliners.  I at least need to separate the open ones from the others so that I can use some of them up.  The issue is that I really don’t wear eyeliner all that much and when I do I tend to reach for my reliable Eyeko more than anything else.  I think I might have actually use the last Eyeko I had up completely. I’m pretty sure that is what prompted me to gram a different eyeliner this week. But I am glad I did as I enjoyed the Tarte Double Take. 

This week I used the Hourglass brow pencil and it was a good formula.  The pencil is starting to dry out a little, or at least it no longer seems as comfortable to apply as it did when I first got it.  When I looked at the amount of product left in the pencil though, it is getting pretty low.  The Hourglass eyeliner may be sticking around in my makeup bag for a while as I try to use it up.  While I still enjoy using it, I can tell a difference from when I first used it to now.  I think that if you are going to use this brow pencil then you need to buy it and just use it until it is gone and don’t let it hang around.  It is nice, but it doesn’t have the greatest longevity.

No mascara on the left, mascara on the right.

This week my mascara was actually two mascaras.  I picked out the Kristofer Buckle Mascara to use as it has been open a while and while it gave me the length I wanted it wasn’t performing as well as it usually does.  I think it is just reaching the end of its life.  This one has been open for five months.  And I think this will be its last turn through the makeup bag. Sadly when I went on the site to capture a link so that you could go find it for yourselves should you be interested, this mascara was not listed on the site at all. I don’t know if they are doing things to the formula or releasing a new mascara so I will have to dive deep and find out. As I’ll soon need to repurchase my Kristofer Buckle Triplicity Foundation, I will be popping in and out of the site anyway.)

To bulk up the fading Kristofer Buckle I called in the Ciate London WonderWand.  This is not the first time I used this mascara and it won’t be the last.  It is fabulously thickening, which made it the perfect pairing for Kristofer Buckle’s Lengthening.  Together they were a great tag team. I may not be able to purchase the Kristofer Buckle again, depending on availability, but I will very much be repurchasing the Ciate London Wonder Wand Mascara. I have a second unopened ciate london mascara in my dressing table so I may compare the two to see if I like one better than the other before I buy it. As the Wonder Wand is getting low on product, I may have to do that test sooner rather than later.

My look for the day (the bangs were not behaving)

And finally the lips.  This week I used the Gel Color lip and cheek Balm crayon in Posh from Nudestix.  While I would not use this shade on my cheeks it made a fantastic neutral lip crayon that was surprisingly long lasting.  It wore off a bit at lunch time but surprisingly is hung on most of the day with a single morning application. 

I know I sound a bit surprised but I tried a liquid lip from Nude sticks a while back and I really didn’t care for it so I am surprised by how much I really enjoyed this lip crayon. I suppose it goes to show you can’t judge an entire brand on one product. I was quite impressed with this nudestix crayon.  I know this came in either a Look Fantastic or a Glossy Box a while back but I can’t remember if I used it or not.  Even if I didn’t I am glad I used it this week as I really enjoyed it and will be reaching for it again.

This week was mostly about the foundations as I worked with the brush to see how it performed.  As a consequence I chose products that for the most part I knew wouldn’t give me much trouble.  Next week I have almost an entire bag full of new products to try. In fact I am going to see how many new products I have and put most of them in the bag.  So while this week was a bag full of good solid products, next week is going to be much more of an experiment. I can’t wait to see how it ends.

If you ae looking for brushes, Bdellium is having a sale. The link will take you to sale pages. I’ve really enjoyed all of the brushes that I’ve used from them and find them to be of consistently good quality. They also have a wide variety of styles so you can usually find the brush you ae looking for in their stock.

The Makeup Bag: February 19th, 2021

The Makeup Bag: used February 13th – 19th, 2021

Welcome my darlings to the weekly makeup bag.  Here I go through all of the products I used throughout the week and let you know what I thought of them.

This week I will start with a Primer.  You know I love a good primer.  I love smoothing the canvas of my face down as much as possible before I start to apply everything else.  This week I chose my small sample of the Pore Professional Pearl for my primer.  I chose it for several reasons.  The first was that it is the last of a whole bunch of Pore Professional sample sizes that I had.  I slowly worked my way through them and whittled it down to just the one.  And once I got down to the last one, I let it languish in the drawer while I use other products. 

This was once my absolute favorite primer.  It is still good, but I can’t remember when exactly when I picked up the primer so it is time for it to be used up.  The second reason I chose to use this primer is because the Clarins primer I’ve used for the last two weeks, and fell in love with, sort of reminded me of this one and I wanted to compare  them to each other.  The fact is that I still really like the Pore Professional Pearl Primer.  I actually prefer it to the regular Porefessional Primer to be honest.  It not only fills the pores like the original but the pink tint really suits my skin tone.  In the pallor of winter it brings a very slight pink tint to the skin.  It is light enough that I don’t think it can actually be called a tint.  Maybe a hue would be a better term.

Bare face on the left and just the primer on the right

Either way it brightens the skin and makes me look healthier, even on days when I just wear the primer and no foundation. I very much like it and as I think I have only a week’s worth of product left in the sample tube, it will be sticking around in the makeup bag another week, just so it can be used up.  It is also going on my list of products to purchase in the full size very soon.

This week I used the Kristofer Buckle Triplicity Perfecting Foundation stick.  I adore this stick foundation.  A couple of swipes across the face and a quick blend with the Bdellium 999 Master blender and that’s it.  No muss no fuss.  And this shade works so well for my skin.  It is light Warm in case you are wondering.  The color is actually flexible enough with my skin that I can wear it year round.  It also requires so little product to create a fantastic look so the Foundation stick lasts a long time. 

Unlike other foundation sticks I’ve tried, this doesn’t need to be warmed up or anything before applying it.  The center circle of product is actually a priming agent,  I find I still like a pore filling primer underneath, but the primer in the foundation really helps with the smoothness of the application. 

This is one of those foundations I always travel with because it is so quick and easy to use, and because it is as stick it doesn’t spill. It feels weightless on the skin.  It is one I will continue to use and always repurchase.

just primer on the left and foundation over primer on the right

This week I also reached for another favorite.  I pulled the RealHer Ultimate Glow Getter Cheek trio out of my makeup drawer.  It is a blush, bronzer and highlighter combo and as you can see the bronzer is already showing the outline of the pan underneath.  This is one of my favorite face palettes.  All three products are buildable formulas that let you control exactly how much product you want to apply on your face. 

Even though the palette is small enough to be travel sized the pans are large enough to be used with the face brushes I usually use.  I don’t have to get a different smaller brush to use them. The white casing was a little unfortunate of a choice as you can see the area around the bronzer has become especially dirty.  It does clean up easily, but it does accumulate fast on the white plastic. 

I like that the pans can easily be popped out of the palette as I think I will probably run out of bronzer before I use up the other two pans and I love the thought of being able to replace the pans in the palette with new ones a they are used up.  I think it is really smart and I really hope I can get this bronzer in a single pan to fit it inside once it is used up.

Speaking of used up, I completely used up the sample size of the It Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Pressed powder this week.  It was a good powder and one I wouldn’t mind using again.  It wasn’t my favorite pressed powder, but it was nice to use even if I won’t be running out to immediately buy the full size.

I like the extra cap that provides space for a powder puff if you use one

My loose powder this week was the Pacifica Cherry Velvet translucent setting powder.  I think this is either the second or third container of this I have had in my dressing table and when this powder is used up, I will be picking up a replacement of it.  It is a great loose setting powder and pacifica is a really good vegan brand that I can easily pick up on a run to Target.

I think I have about half a container of this powder left in the container so it will take a while for me to use it up, but when I do, it will be replaced.  It is finely milled enough to set my makeup without being powdery and it has no white flash back in photographs. The cherry scent can be a bit overpowering  if used every day, but in a rotation of other powders it is always a nice delight to have the cherry scent around for a week.

Eyeko Lid Gloss in Zodiac

Because I wanted to try out the Galactic Lid Gloss from Eyeko this week I added both it and the Meet Matt (e) Trimony to my makeup bag.  The Balm’s shadows always work well for me and they were again fantastic this week.  I live using this all matte palette in general, but it also is a great palette to use when working with layering sparkle and shimmer products over. 

The Balm Meet Matt (e) Trimony Palette

It was excellent with my shimmer stick shadows and it was again fabulous with the Eyeko Galactic Lid Gloss.  The lid gloss itself was fun to play with and I think I will be picking up several.  While you can read my full review here, the lid gloss performed well.  It could be sheered out to a little shimmer and it could be packed on for a coppery, metallic foil look. It was very versatile and once dried, stayed in place all day.  I am a huge fan and look forward to trying out more colors.

As the Eyeko was so dazzling, I couldn’t resist keeping the New Big Poppa mascara from Wet ‘n Wild out another week.  This is one of their new products and so worth picking up.  In the photos it took just one application to make my lashes stand out. It does a great job lengthening and making my lashes look a little fuller.  It also didn’t flake throughout the day.  I’d say it might be one of my new favorite drugstore products, but quite frankly it out performed many of my more expensive mascaras.  I am very much a fan of Big Poppa. I’ll try to remember to trade him out for next week’s selection, but it will be hard to let him go.

No mascara on the left, mascara on the right

I had two lipsticks this week.  I have the Dose of Colors liquid lipstick in Stone that I am trying to finish out and I had the Nars Bullet style lipstick in Karat. If applied directly the Nars is a deep purple red lipstick that I absolutely adore.  It can be tamed by using a brush to apply it and thin it out a little bit, for when you don’t want to be quite as vampy.  It can also be lightened with a little dose of Dose of Colors Stone on top of it.  Stone is a pinky neutral shade.  The tones played well with the Nars and the two colors blended well.  I could go very neutral with Stone alone or super dark with Kirat.  I could also hit most of the spectrum between by blending them in different ways.  It was the best of all lipstick worlds.  The only downside was that these formulas both tend to be a bit drying. 

But that wasn’t a problem as I had Teadora Wild Superfood Lip Drops on hand.  The link will take you to my full review of them.  The drops may be a lip treatment, but when used with a drying lipstick formula they really keep your lips from drying out.  Just let your lipstick actually dry down before you apply it so that the lipstick doesn’t smear.  That is the only trick.  It will make everything more glossy instead of matte but your lips won’t feel parched, dry and cracked.

My final touch was my setting spray and I have to say I opened the new bottle of the Timeless HA Spray that just came in.  I finished the old bottle and couldn’t resisted ordering the exact same one again.  I thought about the other scents but I really like the fresh Cucumber scent of this cucumber scented HA spray.  I also like the extra dose of HA and the way it keeps my makeup in place. I will say that the Pore Professional Super Setter does better at locking things down, but the HA spray gives me those extra skin care benefits.  I think at this moment those two are my top setting sprays and while I will continue to try others, those are the two I will most often reach for.

And that my darlings is the makeup bag for this week.  I’ll admit, I did go for a lot of tried and true products this week.  I had some of my favorites I just couldn’t help reaching for. I think the reason was mostly due to my skin.  Right now I am going through a really good skin moment.  I have had a really good spate of products and I really like the way my skin looks and feels.  Several of those products however are running out or have run out and are being replaced. 

I’ll do a skin care line up post in the near future to discuss. But the end result is that since I am getting ready to try new products I wanted to take advantage of my good skin moment by using products I knew weren’t going to cause me trouble.  Hence the lineup of favorites. I’ll get over it, I just wanted to take the small window before I start tinkering with my skin care again. While I enjoy trying all new skin care products, sometimes there is a slight risk. Of course some times that risk pays off by adding new favorites to my line up.  We’ll have to see as things move forward. But for now, this was my makeup bag this week.

Challans de Paris

The Makeup Bag: February 12th, 2021

The Makeup bag used February 6th – 12th, 2021

Good morning my darlings it is time once again to review all of the products I used on my face this week.  As usual we will start with primer. 

This week I again used the Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch primer and I have to say the photos do not do it justice.  It was like magical pore eraser in a pretty red glass jar.  I love this primer and A part of me really wants to keep it in the makeup bag until it is empty and then just replace it, however, I have other primers in my collection that I need to use. 

So this coming week I will return it to my dressing table and take out another primer.  Actually because it reminds me so much of the Pore Professional Pearl Primer, I might take my last remaining sample of that out of the dressing table and use it so that I can get a comparison.

Bare face on the left, just primer on the right.

Plus I think the sample has been in my dressing table long enough.  It is unopened but I know it won’t keep forever and as I am not planning on traveling anytime soon, keeping it for travel is sort of pointless.

For Foundation this week I went with the Laura Geller Quench ‘n Tint hydrating foundation.  It is hydrating and it is a really good light to medium coverage foundation that feels like a moisturizer when you apply it.  You can read my full review here, but the result is that I liked wearing it now but have reservations about summer wear. 

If my skin were dryer I think I could get away with year round use, but I think in the summer it would be too hydrating for my skin.

Just primer on the left, primer and foundation on the right

It was also a light enough formula that I needed to use my concealer on my cheek scar and this week’s concealer was the Trestique Conceal, cover and correct crayon.  Because of it’s shape and formula it worked well on my cheeks.  It is too stiff to use under my eyes though as I feel it pulls at the skin a little too much.  I love it for spot correcting though as it covers blemishes well and blends in with any foundation I have tried it with.

My bronzer this week was from elf.  It has been a while since I used this bronzer and I forgot how pigmented it was. The first day this week I used this my skin went from winter pale to summer bronzed as I tried to blend it out instead of having an intense bronze on.  I really like the elf formula because it is very blendable, but it is necessary to remember that it is also highly pigmented and needs a light hand when applying.

My bareMinerals blush I absolutely loved this week.  You can read the full review here but in short, the color was fantastic, the bendability was wonderful, the soft focus look was excellent and I really liked the feel of the product on my fingertips.  This is a blush that you apply with your fingers and I have to say I really  enjoyed using it and once this sample is used up I will be purchasing the full sized version.  So you will see this blush a lot as I work through it. 

My highlighter was a sample sized pan from Wander Beauty.  It is the Wanderess Glow in After Hours and I have to say it was a beautiful highlighter. It is a sort of silvery pink and blends really well into the skin.  I like that I can make it bright or subtle depending on my blending  The color as good and the formula worked well for me.  It is a big pan and even though it is a sample size, I suspect it will last quite a while.  For me highlighters tend to last a really long time since I use so little of them. I have always preferred my highlight in small doses and to provide a subtle glow rather than a blinding light.  While I could do something blinding with this, I like that I can go for a soft glow instead.

I had two powders this week one pressed and one loose.  The pressed powder was the It Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores pressed powder.  It is a sample sized.  It is also beginning to show pan.  While I will be keeping this powder in my makeup bag until it runs out I suspect that will be another week at best as it is very thin indeed at the moment.  Once it is gone however, I will be replacing it with something else.  I enjoy using it, but I will not be purchasing a full size once the pan is empty. It is a fine product, but I have others I currently prefer.

My loose powder this week was the Kristofer Buckle Translucent setting powder. It is a very finely milled powder that sits well on the skin and doesn’t cause flash back from cameras.  I really like using it.  The only thing you have to watch out with this powder is the fact that since it is so finely milled, when you open the inner lid, you can sometimes get a small cloud of powder.  It isn’t much, just a small puff that spots your hand, but it is something to be aware of.  I just run my powder brush over my hand before dipping into the powder itself and there is no waste.  Just be aware so that you don’t breathe it in and you will be fine.  It is a lovely setting powder and I am really glad I picked it up. 

Actually it wasn’t a deliberate purchase.  Kristofer Buckle has these Kits and as I adore the formula for their Cashmere slip Lipstick I wanted to try some of the other products on offer and ended up purchasing the kit so I could.  It was a fantastic investment as I have used every item in the kit repeatedly, and some, like the mascara, I have already had to reorder. This powder is one of the things I will be reordering once it runs out. Currently they are having a sale on this powder (among other things on the site). Normally it is $24 but currently it is on sale for $18 and there is free shipping.

I skipped the eyeliner this week, but my brow pencil was from Il Makiage.  It worked really well and has a fine enough point to it that it went exactly where I wanted it to go.  I really enjoyed using it. The shade I used was in Truffles and it suited my eyebrow color perfectly.  The product was soft enough so that I didn’t feel like I was scratching my brows with a pencil, but it was soft enough to leave product behind easily.  It was one of the better brow pencils I’ve tried.

The simple two color eye look I wore most of the week

For my eyeshadow I reached for my trusty Ciate London.  It was the nine pan The Trend Edit that I used this week.  The link will take you to the full review if you are interested.  This week I kept things pretty tame and went mostly with the brown shade Burnt on the lid and the shimmer baby towards the inner lid to lighten it up a bit. 

I love the other colors in the palette, but quite frankly this was a simple easy look that took no thought on mornings when I was rushed.  The colors don’t have a really wide range to them, but if you are looking for a good everyday palette you can wear to work and then use to brighten up the shine before heading to happy hour, this is a palette you might want to look into. 

And at the moment Ciate is having a sale, The Love Sale, actually.  Some of their items are up to 50% off.  As I have quite the collection of Ciate London Products there are many I can recommend.  They are good quality.  And for those of you who love the Muppets, their Miss Piggy Collection is also on sale. There is a good possibility the Miss Piggy Mirror will soon be mine.

My mascara this week was brand new, not just to me, but in general.  I had to run out to Target and as I hadn’t been out of the house in a while, I took my time.  Thee on the end cap was the new Big Poppa mascara from Wet ‘n Wild.  I know I have other mascaras that are waiting unopened and ready for their turn to be used, but I couldn’t resist.  I think it is the fact that the mascara is wearing a crown. I couldn’t leave the crown waiting in the wings.  While the crown is a nice decorative touch, I did find that the ridges of the crown actually let me grip the wand more comfortably and securely.  So it is a functional design as well. The wand is straight, relatively short and bushy with an hourglass shape to it. 

No mascara on the left and mascara on in the righthand photo

It made for a surprisingly effective application actually.  I really liked the way my lashes looked.  They were lifted and lengthened.  It was quite dramatic actually. I liked that the mascara stayed on all day without flaking on me.  It is actually a really good mascara.  I was very impressed.  I don’t know why I am so surprised because Wet ‘n Wild’s new releases lately have all been fantastic.  At this point I have tried new releases of their tinted moisturizer, eyeshadow, lipstick and now the Big Poppa Mascara.  All have been absolutely fantastic.

Very simple look for most of this week

I can’t really say the same for the Jules Smith  Beauty Lip gloss.  It is glossy and I do like the color, but it is sticky and even after the color and shine have worn off, my lips felt strangely waxy.  It was actually a strange feeling.  It felt like a heavy, waxy lip balm, but when wiped off my lips felt a little dry instead of nourished.  It was odd.  Luckily, this is a sample size and there is very little in the sample after a week of use.  I may keep it out to use up, because I really do like the tint of color, however formula trumps color and this is not a formula I will be purchasing in a full size.

I have to say the same thing about the Lise Watier Magnifix Setting Spray.  I like the thought of the healthy setting spray and I like the scent, which made me initially like the spray. I also used it right after using a very paint smelling setting spray so i think it got bonus points for that. It is a very wet setting spray that often leaves spots in my powder. The more I use it, the less I actually like it. I just dislike having to touch up wet spots it leaves behind. It gets a little old.  The bottle is halfway empty and I think I will use it up, but once it journeys to the empty bin it will not be repurchased.

And that my darlings was the good, the bad and the fabulous of this week’s makeup bag.  Tune in next week to see what new products are lurking in the soon to be refilled bag.

Botanical Republic's Collection

Trying out Laura Geller Quench ‘n Tint Hydrating Foundation

This week I used the Laura Geller Quench ‘n Tint hydrating foundation as my foundation product.

According to the website…

Quench your skin with Laura Geller’s intensely hydrating foundation. With a wash of color, this coverage is as weightless and refreshing as a splash of water, leaving skin with a natural glow. If you have combination skin and want medium coverage and a luminous finish – this foundation is for you!

TO USE: Apply a small amount to the face with fingertips, starting from the center of the face and blending outward. Repeat application until desired coverage is achieved.

Light to medium coverage is sort of my favorite section for foundation to play in so I was very happy that this was the quench ‘n tint’s target in terms of coverage.  I just find light to medium coverage easier to wear every day and reserve full coverage for special occasions and places where there will be a lot of photographs.

Plus, at the moment my skin is looking pretty good, so hiding it behind a foundation mask isn’t really my intention.  I was surprised by how thick the foundation came out of the tube. It had me a little worried at first However even though it is thick looking, It didn’t have the consistency of a thick foundation. It felt more like a night cream on the hand.

While I did dot the foundation onto my face as per instructions (sort of) I did use my 999 Master Blender foundation brush from Bdellium tools. I was very happy to get back to it after my Laruce brush test of the past few weeks.

dotted foundation

Even though I used a brush, I can see why it is recommended that you use your hands to blend it in.  It is a very wet feeling formula.  It isn’t liquid-y, but it is wet.  The foundation brush I used has very densely packed bristled and worked well with blending the foundation.  I think if I used a softer, less densely packed foundation brush it would not have done as well and it would have left streaks. My foundation brush did well because it was so densely packed.

It is a wet feeling foundation, however once blended out it feels just like a moisturizer on the skin.  It doesn’t feel like foundation.  You can completely forget that you are wearing it.

But even though you completely forget that you are wearing it, the foundation does stay in place all day.  On average I tend to wear my makeup about ten hours. 

Just foundation all blended in

This week I had one longer day that went for twelve hours, but otherwise it was ten hours with foundation.  I had no problems with the Laura Geller foundation fading away or wearing off throughout the day.  It didn’t leave me with strange bare spots (except around my nose where my reading glasses touch, but even then it was very slight).  I think the reason it lasted so long was that it does sit on the skin more like a moisturizer than a foundation.

Now at the moment my skin is behaving really well.  I have no odd dry spots and no real breakouts.  I have my one scar on my cheek, but overall I am pretty good blemish wise.  Because this is light to medium coverage, I had to go over my scar with my concealer to cover it. This is not the most concealing of foundations.  This is not a foundation I would reach for if I had a lot of red spots and blemishes to cover.  It is however one I would reach for if I was having a good skin day and wanted to wear a foundation I didn’t have to think or worry about. It evens the skin tone well and is weightless to wear.

It is a very worry free formula.

It is also a hydrating one.  If you have oily skin, you might want to try a sample to test it out before committing to a full size.  I found that I had to let my moisturizer sit and absorb for about an hour before I applied my makeup.  If I was in a hurry I could leave off the moisturizer, then go into my primer and then add the foundation and my skin didn’t feel overly dry during the day.  I did need a heavier night time moisturizer when I did that though.  Because it is so hydrating you need to think about your moisturizer game when applying this as well. 

The first day I tried it, I didn’t like it at all because it didn’t play well with my moisturizer. By the third day, I sorted out my application and things were working fine.  Even though it does say illuminating, there was no real glow to the foundation, it simply wasn’t matte.

Right now with my winter skin, I think I can easily wear this foundation.  It I comfortable and not too moisturizing.  I think I might have issues in the summertime.  I may have to do a second summer time test in order to figure it out. Because it is so moisturizing I might have some issues.  But then again my skin rides that balancing line called normal.  It is normal leaning towards dry in the winter and normal leaning towards oily in the summer.  Right now the moisture level of this foundation is perfect for my skin. I’ll test it once the seasons change, but I think this might end up being a seasonal foundation for me. As it is, the Laura Geller Quench ‘n Tint gets two thumbs up for winter use.  It was long lasting, moisturizing and light to medium coverage, in short it was all of the things it claimed to be.

If you are looking for brushes, Bdellium tools is having a big sale going on right now. They have three sections: 30% off, 50% off and 70% off. In the 70% off section they have the vegan line of green Bamboo brushes. You can actually get some of their shadow brushes for $2.70. In the 50% off category you can actually get a 10 piece set with carrying pouch for $32.50. And the 30% off features a selection from their golden triangle line as well as their Studio and Maestro Lines as well as a 12 piece studio eyes set with carrying pouch for $40.60. They have also released a new line of Double Dome blenders which I will admit I have no idea how to use but find utterly fascinating and may have to order just to try out. Every brush I’ve ever ordered from them has been top quality and I really like the thought they put into the shape of their handles.

Trying out the Rodial Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel

The full package with lid in place

A while ago I picked up two mystery boxes from the Glossy Box annual mystery box sale.  At least, they’ve done the sale a couple of years running and I am really hoping it remains an annual sale. Regardless of sale frequency, my premium mystery box ended up being the Limited Edition Rodial box that was released earlier in the year. 

When the box was released, it interested me, but it came out when I was concentrating on my holiday shopping so I put off my personal interests while I conducted my holiday gift buying and by the time I finished shopping for others, it was gone. So I was quite pleased to have it reappear as a mystery box. 

without the lid: the entire red part at the top depressess and product is dispensed through the hole in the top

The reason I was so interested in this box is because I have tried a couple of sheet masks from the brand and always came away with mixed reviews. Essentially the sheet masks had excellent serum, but the material from which the masks were made was too stiff to adhere well to the face.  I was hoping that by trying more products I would get a better feel for the brand.

In my mystery box was a mascara, a bottle of cleansing water, two sets of under eye gel patches, two sets of lip masks and this Sculpting gel, all from the Rodial’s Dragon’s Blood line. The mascara I will be opening soon and the cleansing water makes it Mimsy Skincare Shelf Debut this evening as I emptied a micellar cleansing water this morning, so I will have to get back to you on those.  The under eye gel patches were okay, but not my favorite and the lip masks were similar to the sheet masks; great formula, horrible execution.

This leaves us with the subject of today’s review: the Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel.

I’ll be honest, I didn’t know what a sculpting gel was when the item arrived.  I thought it might actually be a hair styling product and thought it strange that it actually came in what looked like a skin care container.  So I looked it up.

Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel is an innovative sculpting gel that helps to define facial contours and add volume to sagging skin. Dragon’s Blood forms a second skin-like protective film, renowned to protect against external aggressions, reducing redness and inflammation.

Gently massage onto a cleansed face and neck and allow to absorb thoroughly. Use morning and evening.

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Butylene Glycol, Polysilicone-11, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Glycerin, Laureth-4, Polyacrylamide, Phenoxyethanol, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Benzyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Laureth-7, Disodium EDTA, Citric Acid, Ethylhexylglycerin, Croton Lechleri Resin Extract, Lupinus Albus (White Lupin) Extract, Parfum (Fragrance), Propylene Glycol, Limonene, Dehydroacetic Acid, Commiphora Mukul Resin Extract, Geraniol, Potassium Sorbate, Linalool, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Fruit Extract, Sorbic Acid, Tocopherol, Anemarrhena Asphodeloides Root Extract.

Rodial Product page

What it breaks down into is that it is sort of like a creamy serum.  You apply it before your moisturizer, let it sit and then apply your moisturizer on top.

Okay, so knowing what to expect, I took the container into the bathroom to add to my skin care shelf and try it out. 

I will say right off that the lid drove me crazy during my use of this product, but I loved the design of the rest of the package.  The lid is just a clear plastic cap with no intents, no ridges, nothing to actually grip and it just pulls off and pushes back on.  It is super simple. 

Until you have anything whatsoever on your hands, from water to other product. Then you become a monkey trying to get an acorn out of a bottle when it won’t fit through the bottleneck. As I wash my face and used other products before reaching for the sculpting gel, it was a morning issue. In the end, I just started taking the lid off before starting anything so it was ready to go, which solved the issue.  I only really mention it because it was the only minor annoyance with the packaging.  The rest of the package was great.

the three parts, the pump mechanism to the left, the main jar in the center and the plastic lid to the right

It was one of those push top pumps where you press down and the product is dispensed on the top of the plastic.  Then you just swipe your finger across, gather the product and apply it to the skin.  There is no contamination of the product and it stays safe from the air.  The only packaging I have seen like this is with the Drunk Elephant Products.

While it is a fantastic design, it does take up space which meant there was less product than I thought there was going to be, which made me a little sad. This is a travel size and it lasted me three weeks. 

I know, I have been trying to list sample sizes that last under a month in the first impressions category instead of giving them a full review and only breaking out full sizes that last at least a month so I could see results, but quite frankly I couldn’t resist talking about this.  While thus far I have been sort of on the fence about how I feel about the Rodial masks, there is nothing on the fence about this Sculpting gel.

It is fantastic.

The scent of the product is slightly citric and quite frankly reminds me of a pack of smarties (the American Kind, I’ve added a picture in case you are confused). The scent is faint and fades almost immediately.

Smarties, and yes that is my skull cookie jar where I keep candy hidden

The texture of the sculpting gel is like a light gel cream, which sort of goes along with its name.  It absorbs rapidly into the skin and makes the skin feel amazingly smooth. I thought that as it sort of looked like a gel cream that moisturizer would feel like too much when placed over it.

It was not. 

Moisturizer went over it well and when using this sculpting gel I found that I liked the moisturizer I was using better.  I used this sculpting gel with a couple of trial sized moisturizers.  There was one I didn’t particularly care for, but when I used the Rodial first, I liked it a lot better. Which more or less just means I liked the Rodial Sculpting gel.  It is one of the reasons I kept having to pause my use of the Rodial.  I needed to get a feel for how other products worked without it along. 

All the cream that was left for the picture

The same applied to the products I used before the sculpting gel.  While the Rodial Sculpting gel may have gone on before my moisturizer, it went on after my serums, toners and other pre moisturizing products. 

And I have to say I really liked using it in conjunction with them as well. The sculpting gel worked well with every product I tried. There were no interaction reactions that I noticed.  While the product did not last long enough for me to see lasting results, during the time I used it, my skin felt absolutely fantastic.

In case you are wondering why my photographs aren’t as illustrative as they usually are, I did not realize the mechanism from the pump took up so much space so I thought there was more product inside then there actually was.  So in using it I thought, ‘Oh I still have time to take product pictures’ and then I ran out of product. It was most upsetting.  There were only 0.3 fl oz listed as being inside the jar so it was a true sample size. The full size contains 1.7 oz of product and costs $108.

Rodial is a pretty pricey brand and I have to say, this is the only product from them that I can see justifying it’s price.  The sheet masks, under eye gels, and lip masks are all pricey for their category and I would give them a pass.  This Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel I would purchase in a full size.  It is actually going on my “Ideal” list.

For most products, skincare, haircare, makeup and so forth, I generally classify products by answering the question: would I buy again or in a full size or would I pass on using this product again?  A few products not only make the repurchase list but make the “Ideal” List.  This is the list of the products that would go into my Ideal Skin Care (or makeup or haircare) bag.

Sometimes a product stays on there for years.  Other times it makes the cut and then is eventually replaced. Partially, it is replaced because of new products that I try and how I feel about them, but sometimes due to my skin’s changing needs.  Occasionally, it is because the product is discontinued. 

I may not always stock my ideal products (because skin care goes bad and I like to try new things) but in my mind the products on the Ideal list are the products I compare other products I try to. With this, it is almost a cheat because I don’t know of any other products specifically in this category.  I know that my skin felt softer and more nourished and there was a slight tightening of the looser skin around my jaw line.

So perhaps the category is broader than I think and encompases more premoisturizing creams. Because quite frankly that was one of the bonus points for this cream. It not only worked well with my skin, but it went over serums and under moisturizers, causing no trouble and enhancing both. 

I do know that if I do come across something similar, the Rodial Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel is what I will compare it to. I also know that Look Fantastic tends to put different high end skin care brands on sale throughout the year.  Rodial is usually one of them.  While I would definitely purchase this product, given the high price, I will probably wait for the sales. Sale or not, I do know that I definitely want to see this product return to my skincare line up.

Speaking of sales, Look Fantastic has one you might want to look into: 15% off using the code PRESIDENTS plus a free Filorga Best Sellers Sampling kit for orders over $80. Also the Look Fantastic Beauty Box Treasure Edition has been revealed in full on the site if you want to see what is coming in the February box. I know my box is on the way (actually listed as being delivered this afternoon) and I can hardly wait. I know I usually try to avoid spoilers when I can, but when I went on the page, I saw both Elemis and Eyeko pictured and I got very happy.

Also for those shopping Eyeko has a 25% off deal going right now when you buy two or more products and Elemis has a deal going until February 12th.

For a limited time only, enjoy 20% off our limited edition Lunar New Year Pro-Collagen Marine Cream.* Use Code: LUNAR

Happy Shopping!

The Makeup Bag: February 5th, 2021

The Makeup Bag Used January 30th – February 5th, 2021

Welcome once again to the weekly makeup bag post, where I talk about the products I used this week and what I thought about them.  Are you ready? Excellent!

First up, we have the primer.  This week’s primer is the Clarins Instant Smooth perfecting touch and oh my darlings I am in love. (the link is just a link to their website. I have no affiliate code or anything it is just a fantastic primer).

It is pink in color and reminds me of the Pore Professional Pearl (which I personally prefer to the other varieties).  I needed just a tiny bit and I smoothed it over my face and POOF no more pores.

I don’t know how well it translates into the photos, but I’ve posted them below.  In person it felt like some sort of magic trick. It was fantastic. 

Bare skin on the left and just primer on the right (apologies for the head tilt)

The Primer retails for $39 and I have already book marked the product page.  I know, I love primers and I do have quite a few. I try very hard to rotate through them so that no product goes bad, and I really don’t like stockpiling products, but this is one that I am having a really hard time not ordering a second one just so that when this one runs out there is already another one waiting.  There are only a few products that I want to make certain that I have a backup of and this primer has now made the list. It doesn’t hurt that the primer is in a beautiful red glass jar. I am a sucker for jewel toned glass.  Putting an excellent product inside, just makes it more desirable.

This week I took the Too Faced Dew You Full Coverage foundation out of my foundation drawer to use.  I know it has been a while since I reached for it, but it is among my lightest foundations.  Although if you compare the color by the name Porcelain to the actual product you find the product is just a little darker than the color strip (in case you were thinking of ordering it.)

The difference isn’t major, but there is one so you might want to think about that when choosing a shade. Even though it is a full coverage foundation, I tend to apply low enough amounts that I can talk it into being more of a medium coverage product.  I like the way this foundation sits against the skin and I really like the design of the pump dispenser. 

Just primer on the left and foundation over primer on the right.

The scent of the foundation is fruity.  I think it is supposed to be tutti frutti, and it does smell fruity. I kind of like the scent and I like the way the foundation wears.  It is an easy one to wear and as the shade is my winter range, I can now wear it. So it all worked out. I will probably use up this foundation though and not repurchase it right away, mainly because I don’t wear a lot of full coverage foundations and I have a couple that I tried that I do like a little bit better. That doesn’t mean it’s bad, it just means it isn’t a category where I need to keep anything but my absolute favorite stocked.

Too Faced also supplied my bronzer and pressed powder this week actually.  I used the Cocoa Contour Palette this week.  I chose it because I could adjust my bronze to suit my skin tone.  I really like contour palettes when I am uncertain which shade would work best for me.  I also tend to forget I have this one, especially in the summer when I just use the small bronzer compact from Too Faced. I really do like their bronzers and this is a category of their products I would consistently repurchase as I do like their formula. It will however take me quite a while to work through the products in this palette.

This week I blended the light and medium contours to use. The product worked well and I love the chocolate scent to it.  I also love the packaging and to be honest the compact and the mirror is something I will use long after the product is gone.  The sturdy package is perfect for travel and that mirror is really nice. Too Faced has a lot of really nice packaging and the products I have are good.

To round out the Too Faced trio I used the Peach Blur.  As expected it smells of peaches and to be honest I forgot I had it.  I used it quite a bit before I picked up the Becca Pink Haze setting powder actually as you can see from the wear pattern in the middle. That used to be a peach in case you couldn’t tell.  It gives a slight pink to the skin and helps banish the winter whites with a healthier glow. While it works well enough to use, I really do prefer the Pink Haze from Becca.  I will be using this powder up, but not repurchasing it in the future. Which is kind of a serendipitous call as it is no longer listed on the Too Faced site, at least I couldn’t find it.

I have to jump back now to my concealer (which I did add before bronzer and powder, I just grouped the Too Faced products together.  This week I used the Julep Cushion concealer and as always it was fantastic.  I know a lot of people tend to draw the under eye triangles with concealer, but this has never been how I apply it.  I tend to apply dots and then go in with a makeup sponge to blend. I don’t have massive dark circles but I do have lines under my skin. I also have frequent bouts of insomnia and trust me, no makeup can really truly cover that up. I do like that the Julep formula does not emphasize them though.

The Huda Beauty Basic B sponge is great for blending out the concealer as it had that flat side that makes getting into the edges easier.  I love the julep formula.  My only issue is that the cushion top tends to make the inside of the cap a bit messy.  It is a minor issue though and I will happily use every last drop of this concealer.

face products on

My blush this week was my favorite Marbled light in Halo by Ciate London.  As always it performed beautifully.  I love the way it can be built up and the way it wears.  What can I say, it is one of my favorite products and if I don’t have a blush to test out I tend to reach for wither this Ciate Blush or the Benefit Gold Rush.  Both have a similar glow they add to the skin without being shimmery and both ate at the top of my blush list.

For my highlighter this week I pulled the Illamasqua highlighter in OMG.  At least I think that’s the shade name.  I love that I can be as subtle or as glowy as I want with this highlighter.  If I want a blinding strip of light, I can do that.  If I want a soft glow then I can do that too.  While I normally prefer more gold and pink toned highlighters, this is one of the few silvery toned highlighters that I really enjoy. It is a small compact though and I tend to forget it is there.  I need to make an effort to remember more often. I have to say I have been picking up more and more Illamasqua products lately and thus far they have all worked really well for me. This is one of those brands I need to pay more attention to.

My eyeshadow palette this week was one of the new 5 pan Color Icon Palettes from Wet ‘n wild.  The link will take you to the full review, but the basics of it is that it is a good palette with little fall out and colors that blend.  My only issue was that I wanted the brown matte to be warmer in tone to mix better with the rest of the shadows.  A minor complaint and the only one I had with the palette.

single ruset shade blended out with one dip into the pan

My eyebrow pencil was again the RealHer Eye am Strong. I know this is the third week in a row.  I was planning to change it out but then I noticed that I had almost no product left in it.  So I decided to just finish it out this week, which I did.  Alas it is now ready to depart for the empties bin.  No product remains. I enjoyed using it and once I use up a few more brow pencils (which doesn’t really take that long) I will be replacing it. This is another brand I want to remember to keep in my sites as I have several really good products from them in my collection.

Joining the Real Her in the empties bin this week is the Kevyn Aucoin The Expert Mascara.  I know it should have gone sooner but I really liked the mascara, especially the small curve in the wand, so I kept it a little longer than I should have just to use up the last of the formula.  The tube is now close to empty but it has been open far too long. It is also not performing as well as it did when I first got it, even though it is still nice, which is extra incentive to move it along to the empties bin.

No mascara on left, mascara on right

Even though there is still product left inside and it isn’t dry or clumpy I will be saying goodbye as it has been open about ten months at this point.  I try to only keep a few mascaras open so that I can use them up by the six month mark.  I loved this mascara and I used most of it up, but for health and safety it will now be moved to the empty bin.  At some point though, it will be replaced.  I enjoyed the heck out of this mascara.

This takes us to the lips.  And this week I had a new lipstick to try.  It was the Wet ‘n wild Megalast matte bullet style lipstick in the shade Cinnamon spice.  I really liked the formula. 

It sat well on my lips and while it is a traditional lipstick and does wear off when eating or drinking it didn’t leave massive lip prints everywhere.  The formula was comfortable and I absolutely adore the color.  It is a nude with a rosy hue to it rather than a brown one and I really enjoy the shade. 

The formula was nice and even though I know the lip design has been used elsewhere, I still like it.  I suspect many more of these lipsticks will be coming into my possession. The formula is very wearable and as it is Wet ‘n Wild the cost isn’t prohibitive.

And so at last we come to the Setting spray.  Once again my darlings I found myself reaching for the Pore Professional Super setter.  I just adore the ultra-fine mist. It is so fine that one morning I put it on after applying my mascara and my mascara didn’t run. (I’m not my best before coffee.)

It also keeps my makeup in place well.  I am very pleased with this setting spray.  However, I will make a concerted effort to choose a different one for next week.  I make no promises about the primer though.  I am fairly certain I am going to have to talk myself out of using it every week.  But I’ll argue with myself about that next week.  For now I know I’m keeping the Clarins Smoothing primer in the bag another week.  Everything else I will change out.

Over all it was a pretty good slate of products this week. I have quite a few products that I liked using, teo that I used up and sent to the empties bin, a couple that I’ve marked to use up but not repurchase and one product I have fallen head over heels in love with. It was an interesting mix and one I am actually quite pleased with.

With Valentines day coming up, there are bunches and bunches of sales. I’ve listed a few I know of below in case you are interested in taking advantage of them.

Chantecaille has two offers that run from now until February 28th:

 $100 off Bio Lifting Discovery Collection with code TRYBIO. Discover the benefits of Bio Lifting skincare with this introductory set for $195 (a $344 value)

This unprecedented rich mask is powered by botanicals that virtually iron out the looks of lines and wrinkles. The anti-wrinkle hexapeptide softens the appearance of expression lines.

Free Gift: Smooth & Soothe Collection with any purchase of $225. Featuring best-selling Rice & Geranium Cleanser (8ml), Hibiscus Smoothing Mask (8ml) and Flower Harmonizing Cream (8ml). 

Featuring best-selling Rice & Geranium Cleanser (8ml), Hibiscus Smoothing Mask (8ml) and Flower Harmonizing Cream (8ml)

Embryolisse has an off of: $10.00 OFF on Makeup Compact Powder. Embryolisse – the Dermo-cosmetic expertise.

And finally Amore Pacific has complimentary shipping and samples on every order as well as this offer:

Lunar New Year: Enjoy a Limited Edition Scented Candle Duo + 5-piece Time Response Set ($319 value) with any $275+ purchase!

Happy Shoppong!

The Makeup Bag: January 29th, 2021

The Makeup bag used January 23rd – 29th, 2021

This week’s makeup bag was a very interesting one.  Upon first glance it looks like I went minimalist, which I sort of did.  Mostly it was a minimalism dictated by the Ofra Face Palette since most of my products came from it this week. But we’ll get to that in a bit.  We are going to start from the primer and work our way out today. 

The primer I used this week was one of my long time favorites.  It was the Urban Decay Optical Illusion Primer.  I tend to use it in the spots where I really want my pores filled and my coverage flawless. 

On me it works like a dream, and because I tend to use it only on my nose and cheeks where I have the most noticeable pores, One pump is all it takes for me. I really like the argan oil in the product as it makes my skin feel soft and nourished.   I especially like using this primer under lighter foundation products as it means that the light coverage products don’t have to work as hard to look fabulous. 

Bare freshly washed face on the left, primer only on the skin on the right

This week’s foundation product was the wet ‘n wild barefocus Tinted hydrator. It is a tinted moisturizer that gives sheer to medium coverage.  I was very impressed by t’s performance and look forward to using this product repeatedly.  Most of my tinted hydrators are tinted for my skin when it is in the summer and autumn.  I deliberately picked this one up because I wanted to have a shade that was more for my skin color in the winter.  I wasn’t certain if this would be the correct shade but I really liked how it worked out on my skin this week.  The link will take you to the full review of the barefocus, but the end result is that I really liked it.

Just the primer on the left and the foundation over primer on the right

This of course moves us into the Ofra Good to Go Mini’s palette. This palette provided my bronzer, blush highlight and eyeshadow this week. While I have used Ofra’s Blush and highlight before, the bronzer and eyeshadows were new to me. It was kind of a mixed bag for me actually.  The link will take you to the full review but here are the basics. The blush and highlighter performed well.  As I’ve used those before I quite frankly expected them to be good products.  The bronzer too performed really well.  It was when we got to the shadows that things became a little iffy.  With the mattes the formulas were nice but the colors weren’t my favorites.  The shimmers I fell in love with.  I absolutely adore the old gold shade called Ambition. 

I really like the fact that the pans can all be taken out and replaced.  Quite frankly I would replace all of the mattes.  The formula was good, the colors weren’t.  I did like having so many of my products in one place though.  I think that if I were traveling, this would be a good face kit to travel with because of the face products. I would just need to replace the mattes prior to traveling or add a second shadow palette into the travel kit.


The Ofra Palette came in this month’s Boxy Charm premium as did the two Fenty Products that I used this week.  The Setting powder I used was Fenty Beauty Pro Filter.  I used the shade Cashew.  The tone of the powder is really good on my, however it is a little darker than I need right now.  I looked very tan this week.  I think that I will put this powder back in my makeup drawer and take it out in the spring.  I think it’s darker shade would help deepen some of my winter foundations as my skin starts to tan for spring and I think that in the summer time it will be the absolutely perfect setting powder shade for me.  Right now it is a hair too dark.  The undertones however suit my skin perfectly so I am pleased to have this around.


The mascara I used this week was also a Fenty Product (the Full Frontal lifting and curling mascara to be precise) and also from January’s Boxycharm Premium.  I have to admit I pulled the wand out of the tube and I was not all that impressed.  Then I used the mascara and I was very impressed with the product’s performance.  Fenty is one of those brands that is very hit or miss for me.  Both the powder and the mascara were definite hits for me. I know the pictures below make me feel a little crosseyed to look at but the with mascara and without mascara pics are quite dramatic. I really look forward to getting a lot out of this mascara.  It lengthened beautifully and didn’t flake out at all through the day.  It was definitely a winner.

This week I kept my RealHer eyebrow pencil in the bag and again enjoyed using it.  I figured I had so many new products to try that I ought to keep a couple of my excellently performing ones in the bag to balance it out.  Hence why the RealHer Eyebrow pencil remained and I added the Urban decay Optical Illusion.  Some days, you need to keep a few trusted friends close.

This week I also went with a tried and true for my lip product.  I chose it not only because I love the formula and the color, but because it was an Ofra Liquid lip.  I figured if I was going Ofra-tastic with the face palette, I might as well add in the lips as well. So I did.  As always this liquid lip performed beautifully.  I always enjoy using it.  This shade is Pasadena and is one that I will be repurchasing (along with several of it’s friends) once I am finished with it.

And that is it.  I know short and sweet this week.  Also it was a pretty good week.  Most of my products were new to me items. And I believe the wet ‘n Wild product is actually just new to the market as well as new to me.  With the exception of the eyeshadow shades there was very little disappointment this week and a whole lot of cheering. Let’s hope next week is just as fabulous.

Good to Go with Ofra Cosmetics

The Ofra Cosmetics Good to Go Palette

This week I used the Ofra Good to Go Mini Palette in my makeup bag.  It contains a blush, a bronzer a large pan with four highlighters and six eyeshadows.  Of the eyeshadows three are mattes and three are shimmers. 

We’ll start with the highlighters.  Highlighters are what I automatically think of when I think of Ofra and these did not disappoint.  Because there are four you could go as soft and natural glow as you wanted or you could go for a really stunning highlight. 

Ofra Names

The four colors were well chosen and I really enjoyed mixing and matching with a little blending a well.  It is a really nice pan to have and four shades well chosen.

Highlighters, to swatch I started with the darker gold at the top and went clockwise around the circle

I have also used OFRA’s blush before and this blush in the shade Intentions was just like the others I have in my collection (although a different shade)  It is a very buildable formula.  I did not have clown cheeks with this blush as long as I went in with a soft hand.

I found myself tapping off the brush before applying it to my cheeks mostly because the shade is a bit bright on me at this time of year. There was little fall out even when I did this with this blush. while not my favorite shade for this time of year, it ended up working really well for me.

Blush and bronze

Oddly the bronzer was the right shade for this time of year.  I would advise going lightly into the pan as it is highly pigmented, however it does blend out well so you don’t end up with one dark stripe across your face.  It was a very nice product and one I really enjoyed using this week.  It also made me want to look into more Ofra Bronzers.  While this shade was nice, I would like to try one with a slightly warmer tone.

And now we reach the eyeshadows.  Let’s start with the mattes.  They are Clean Slate, Reset and Ready. The shadows all went on smoothly and without any problems to be honest.  They were buttery soft and while they kicked up powder in the pan one tap and they applied well to the eye with no real fall out.   There was no patchiness that I noticed. 

the Mattes: L to R: Clean Slate, Reset and Ready

My issues were all about color with the mattes.  Clean Slate and Reset both disappeared on me with Reset only leaving a slightly orangey jaundiced look behind.  They both make wonderful bases for other colors to sit on top of, but on their own both colors more or less blended right into my skin and disappeared.  The big difference is that one looks a little lighter than the other. The red tones of Ready showed up, but it was a reddish shade that had a bit too much orange in it to suit my skin tones.  The mattes were simply not colors I would have chosen.  The formula of the mattes was quite lovely though so I probably will pick up some Ofra matte eyeshadows in the future.  Just not these shades.

Shimmers: L to R: Fresh, Ambition, Goals

The three shimmers however are a different story.  With a brush, they don’ show up at all. Just don’t bother with the brush.  Applied with your finger, they are stunning. The old gold bronze shade called Ambition may be my favorite eyeshadow. Not just of this palette, but in general. It was amazing and I am going to have a hard time not reaching for it to pair with other palettes in the future. I can already see it coming. 

When applied with the finger it was spectacular and stayed in place all day.  And the color is just fantastic. The reddish shimmer called Goals was also nice when applied by hand and did help to tame down the orange tinge of Ready. The green shimmer Fresh was a delight as well.  I was nervous because it is so bright but I have to say it is going into my spring must haves’ list. It is a lovely shade and unlike any other shadow I have.  At the moment I have an IBY pastel toned Enlighten palette that I like to use in the spring and I have to say I will be pairing Fresh with it once the weather is a little warmer. I can wear it now, but it feels a little to spring like for me to want to reach for it. Especially as today snow flakes are swirling down from a gunmetal sky.

The end review: three shimmers were fabulous colors and performed magnificently.

To be fair, everything in this palette performed well, I just didn’t like the matte shades so reaching for them was just sort of hard for me this week.  But even if I didn’t care for the shades, the formula was fantastic and knowing I like the formula goes a long way towards helping me decide what shadows I actually want to buy.  These may not have been my colors, but they did convince me to buy Ofra Shadows in the future.  Despite the shadows, I suspect I will get a lot of use out of this palette in the future.

The Underclub has two new bundles available. The first is the Best Week Ever Seven Pack and features:

  • Make It Happen Monday – Titov String Micro Bikini in Red
  • Tushy Tuesday – Toast Luna Thong in Eclipse
  • Humpday Wednesday – Toast Inga Tanga in Baked Clay
  • Thong Thursday – Toast Angela Seamless & Lace Thong in Blackberry Wine
  • Flirty Friday – Toast Hope Polka Dot Bikini in French Blue
  • Sexy Saturday – Clo Intimo Ginebra Brazilian in Black
  • Stay Chill Sunday – Peche Celeste Bikini in Lilac

They also have a Curvy Weekender Three pack if you don’t want the whole week. (I really like the look of the Lilac although that French Blue polka dot is adorable too). It features:

  • Flirty Friday: Toast Hope Polka Dot Mesh Bikini in French Blue
  • Sexy Saturday: Playful Promises Gemma Bikini in Black
  • Stay Chill Sunday: Peche Celeste Bikini in Lilac

It is available from now until the end of February and looks quite frankly amazing. I love the quality and look of their products (which is why I have a subscription with them). Just thought you’d like to know they were now on sale ig you are looking for a little something to refresh your drawer. Personally new underwear always makes me feel extra fabulous. The link below shows the items in the seven pack (or you could click to get a closer look on their site.)

Trying the new Wet ‘n Wild Barefocus Tinted Hydrator

barefocus from wet ‘n wild

Late last week I needed to be out of the house.  I needed to escape and just be somewhere that wasn’t home.  I know, I’m sure all of you have felt similar urges.  Mine hit and so I decided that as I hadn’t run my car in a few weeks it might be a good idea to give it a bit of exercise. So I grabbed my keys and my mask and went to Target. 

It has become the place with wide aisles where I can go that isn’t home.

At the time of day I went there were few people and I took great delight in moseying through aisles.  I talked myself out of a few on sale seasonal items that I didn’t need and found myself strolling through the makeup.  I was unable to talk myself out of picking up a new No. 7 powder.  I put it in the drawer of my dressing table and am still going to try using up some other products before opening it, but I know it is there so there is the temptation to just use it. But I am goung to try to resist.

I also couldn’t resist picking up a few wet ‘n wild items. 

While the eyeshadow and lipstick will wait until next week, this week I tried the Wet ‘n wild barefocus Tinted hydrator.  From the outside, this product looks like it was tailor made for me. An interesting thing though, when I wnt on the wet ‘n wild website, I couldn’t find it. The wet ‘n wild link above will take you to the wet ‘n wild site. Perhaps it will be posted soon. This link will take you to Target and the actual product I am reviewing. I’m not certain why it isn’t listed on the site. Perhaps it is because they are focused on their Valentine’s collection release. (which quite frankly looks really good: The All for Love Bundle for $11.99 looks really nice actually and I may be swinging back by to look into more details. It includes one of their nail polishes and I have to say, I really like the current formula for Wet ‘n Wild nail polishes. But that is for another post.)

Let’s go over the info on the front of the package shall we?

Barefocus tinted hydrator tinted skin veil.

That’s a big check for me.  I have been really enjoying tinted moisturizers from QMS to NYX Cosmetics, the tinted moisturizer has become one of the largest sections of my foundation drawer in the past year.  I love the lightweight of the product and the lighter coverage, especially when I’m going out less.

Sheer to Medium coverage.

Again hitting me right in my sweet spot. I have a few full coverage products but medium is my happy place.

And then they really got me…

Hyaluronic Acid and Squalane

Those are currently two of my favorite skin care ingredients and here they are together in a sheer to medium tinted moisturizer.

And then I saw the price. Because it is wet ‘n wild, you know it is going to be relatively economical and sure enough it was being offered for $4.99. It is also clean, cruelty free and vegan. So of course, it came home with me.

I wore it as my foundation product all week and quite frankly I loved it. I wouldn’t go swapping out my regular moisturizer for it, but it didn’t dry out my skin and I am now entering the dry skin phase of my year, so I appreciated that. 

dotted on before being blended in

When dispensed on the hand it looks exactly as you would expect a creamy foundation to look.  I have to say I was cautious as I took a sniff.  A while back I picked up the PhotoFocus Foundation from wet ‘n wild and although it performs beautifully the fresh paint smell of it tends to give me a headache so I don’t reach for it as much as I probably should. 

I am very pleased to say that this tinted moisturizer does not have that scent.  It has the light smell of foundation when you sniff the top of the tube but once dispensed it has almost no scent at all, for which I am very grateful.

Because it is a tinted moisturizer I did make a careful choice with my primer this week.  Tinted moisturizers are great if you want a barely there look, however if you have large pores or blemishes, I suggest a sturdy pore filling primer to go under them. 

Bare skin on the left, just the barefocus tinted moisturizer on the left.

This week I went with Urban Decay’s Optical Illusion primer and it worked like a dream. It blurred out my blemishes and pores and the tinted moisturizer did the rest.  It was a winning combo.  Quite frankly other than remembering to use a primer (which I would have done anyway because I love primers) there were no issues with this tinted moisturizer. 

I don’t know how much benefit the hyaluronic acid and squalane were but I like thinking of them in the mix.  And as the barefocus tinted hydrator from wet ‘n wild performed beautifully (and I used my regular skincare underneath) I am willing to just accept whatever extra kick they provided and keep using the product.  The barefocus tinted hydrator was definitely a win for me. Since I couldn’t find it on the wet ‘n wild site, I will be sending an e-mail to them today to see if i can find out more information. I am hoping that they became distracted with Valentines day prep that they just haven’t managed to get this barefocus up on the site yet. I know that doesn’t sound all that plausible, but one can hope. I really like the formula of this and am really hoping that it isn’t discontinued or otherwise taken off the shelves. I’ll let you know if I find out anything. For now, I’m just going to poke around their Valentine’s day collection and see what I want to add to my collection.

Fall In Love with the NEW Valentines Day Collection from Wet n Wild