The Make Up Bag: September 18th, 2020

The Make up Bag Used September 12th – 18th

This was a strange week.  I had plans, chose the full array of products, and then with the first use of the QMS Medicosmetics Active Glow Tinted Day Cream, those plans went out the window.  I really liked using the QMS Active Glow, and the link will take you to my full review if you would like to check it out.  However, it was very much a no make up makeup. Attempting to use a full eyeshadow palette or regular lipstick just sort of looked foolish with it.  So I decided it was going to be a very minimalist week.

First off, there was the sunscreen.  While there were two in my bag this week, the Volition Prismatic Luminizing shield (my absolute favorite) and the Polaar Fluide Solaire, I used them in different ways. 

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The Volition went on my face and the Polaar, which I found a little heavy on my face, went on to my neck and upper chest where my t-shirts often expose the skin to the full punishing rays of the sun.  As sunscreen I like them both, but as I don’t really care for the Polaar on my face, I use it on my neck.

While I could just use the Volition on both my neck and face, I haven’t found any other sunscreen I like on my face so this lets me use other sunscreens and reserve the Volition strictly for my face. It makes it last a bit longer and this week I certainly had space for both tubes in my makeup bag.

Because the QMS is so luminous on the skin, I definitely needed my setting powder this month. Since I was using limited products on my face, I went with the Becca Pink Haze Setting powder.  The QMS evened my skin tone and the Becca Pink Haze brought some color to the skin while still maintaining the no makeup look. 

It was just a healthy glow to the skin more than anything else.  Of the Becca Powders I’ve tried I think this may be one of my favorites.  To keep it from looking powdery once I applied it I used my damp Huda Beauty Makeup sponge to kind of tap it down and take away the excess. 

I really like the flat section of this makeup sponge.  I really didn’t think it would make that much of a difference, but it really has.  I know other makeup sponges have that feature as well, but that combined with the texture of the Huda Beauty sponge make it one I reach for the most.

Over all the QMS Active Glow mixed with the Becca Pink Haze gave me a really healthy natural look all week. And it didn’t get rubbed off by my face mask which was nice.

While I steered away from both bronzer and highlighter this week, my blush was called into action. Actually I’ve called this blush into action quite a few times and it is starting to get a very distinct divot in the center. This week I used my Gold Rush Blush from Benefit as my eyeshadow. 

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It gave me a slight color to the lids to add definition without looking like it was really there. The slight gold shimmer to the blush made it look like I did something but wasn’t trying too hard. Which was kind of the look I was going for this week.  It worked beautifully in this capacity.

These powders were set into place with my HA Spray from Timeless Skincare.  It was sent to me for a trial and this was the second week I put it into use.  I am still absolutely loving it.  The cucumber scent is amazingly refreshing and I like it almost as much as I like the spray. It makes my day feel spa like (and yes it is mostly because I am very scent oriented.)

It kept the powders into place (which is what a setting spray is asked to do) and it has good for my skin ingredients.  I was very happy to use it a second week.

With the powders in place and locked down for the day I reached for my Scandal Eyes Wow Wings Mascara from Rimmel.  Rimmel is a long time favorite drug store brand of mine.  Their powders and mascaras have always found a place in my world. 

The wand on this particular mascara is shaped to give you maximum lash lift towards the outer corners of your eyes.  I really enjoy this mascara.  Alas it is reaching the end of its life.  It has reached the six month mark and not only is it time to let it go, but after six months of use the little left remaining in the tube is beginning to get a little clumpy. 

the mascara wand from Rimmel

As it was perfect for six months I’m okay with it going clumpy when it reaches it’s expiration date.  If it didn’t I’d be tempted to keep it past it’s expiration date.  The clumps force me to get rid of it. It is a mascara that I will be repurchasing again in the near future.  It gave me very dramatic lashes and didn’t flake on me.

And finally we come to the lips.Even in a minimal make up week, I still ended up with three lip products.  The first is the Bite beauty Agave Lip mask in Maple. Most days I wore this at least part of the day.  Mostly around two ish when I was starting to think that snacking sounded like a good idea. 

The maple scent makes me feel as though I have already enjoyed a treat and therefore don’t need a second one. Which helps curb a lot of my snacking cravings.  It also keeps my lips nice and soft, which I’m sure is more the marketing plan for the product. At least I don’t think – Bite Beauty – Helps keep you from stuffing your face with potato chips mid afternoon – is their new campaign slogan.

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While I used this tube a lot, it barely shows a dent because so very little is actually needed to cover the lips.  It is one of those fantastic products that seems like you can use forever and never run out and then magically one day it is empty.  Then you stare at the empty tube in shock wondering how it could be empty. At least that is my take, you need so little it always seems like there is enough for just one more use in it.

my two main lip products this week

The second lip product I didn’t like as much.  It is the Alamar Cosmetics lip gloss in birthday suit.  It looked good on and it smelled nice, but it was very sticky feeling on the lips.  I know that most lip glosses have a somewhat sticky feel to them, but this seemed a little extra sticky.  It does look nice though.  I think this is one of those lip glosses that will end up in my purse so that if I have to apply it before giving a speech or taking a photo it can be applied, but it isn’t one I will be turning to often. Looks nice but doesn’t feel nice.

My third and final product looked nice, felt nice and smelled nice.  I think it also did some nice things for my lips too.  It is the Yensa Super 8 Lip oil in the shade pink shine.  While it gives a nice gloss to the lips, it isn’t sticky (cause it’s a lip oil). It also isn’t greasy, which I was worried about. 

Despite looking toxic-ly red in the tube it really only gave a delicate tint of color to the lips.  And throughout the day it sort of absorbed into the lips making my lips feel smother and better than before I applied it, which is not something I usually get with lip products.  The oils were quite nourishing.  I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that I like it as I have had good luck with this Yensa Line.  The Primer has long been a favorite of mine and last week I tried out their foundation and really liked it.  So for me anyway the Super 8 line from Yensa is super indeed. And to be honest, I kind of want to pick up the entire line of lip oils. Which as much as I love lip products is really rare for me to say about an entire line. But I really liked this lip oil.

lip swatches, Yensa on top and Alamar on bottom

So that my darlings was my minimal makeup bag this week. No primer, no bronzer or highlight. It was a simple quick and easy routine.  With the exception of the sticky lip gloss and the realization that I had to say goodbye to a well loved mascara, it was a pretty good week.

Because the summer is ending, I am going to be going through my foundation and foundation like products and pulling the darker ones.  These I want to use before my skin starts losing it’s tan.  I can’t remember if I have any I haven’t tried yet that are in the darker range.  If there are I will go with those first, but I think I might have gotten all of them.  I now I have some new winter shades to test But that is still a little while off.  O next week might be a primer review rather than a foundation one. Or maybe there will be something else that jumps out of my make up bag and decides it wants to be singled out. I’ll have to see what makes it into my make up bag before I can tell.   Either way, that is the end of this week’s make up bag.


Paula's Choice UK

QMS Medicosmetics Active Glow Tinted Day Cream

To be honest, I wasn’t entirely certain what to expect from this product.  QMS Medicosmetics is a rather pricey brand and I’ve had my issues with them before.  The Lip Line corrector did very little for me and the eye cream was too heavy and clogged my pores rather badly. However I heard very good things about this from a cousin, who has similar skin to mine and also had issues with the eye cream.  So when I saw it as an option during Boxy Charm Choice I clicked on it.  I figured maybe the third time is the charm.

Before we get into my experiences and thoughts, let’s see what the product page has to say.

Lightweight, sheer, colour adaptive cream with vitamins. Helps to blur imperfections to reveal visibly glowing, even skin. The combination of a skin-perfecting light tint and hydrating formula make this an ideal day cream.

This sheer cream combines hydration with a complexion restoring tint.

Enriched with vitamins, this day cream is ideal for indoor days for a refreshed no-makeup, natural look or under makeup to even the complexion. Its clever tint is designed to work with every tone and its moisturizing ingredients help to firm and smooth the skin.

Ingredients

Aqua (Water), Decyl Oleate, Glyceryl Stearate, Butylene Glycol, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Oil, Propylene Glycol, Isoamyl p-Methoxycinnamate, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, PEG-8 Distearate, Steareth-2, Cetearyl Alcohol, PEG-30 Stearate, Glycerin, Panthenol, Methyl Gluceth-20, Tocopheryl Acetate , Sericin , Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract, Chlorella Vulgaris Extract, Retinyl Palmitate, Maris Aqua (Sea Water), Hydrolyzed Algin, Oryzanol, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Galactoarabinan, Lecithin, Inulin Lauryl Carbamate, Sodium Phytate, Citric Acid, Hydrogenated Palm Glycerides Citrate, Silica, Xanthan Gum, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Glyceryl Oleate, Alcohol, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Dimethicone, BHT, Parfum, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Piroctone Olamine, Potassium Sorbate, Benzyl Salicylate, Citronellol, Eugenol, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Coumarin, Linalool, Limonene, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Yellow Iron Oxide (CI 77492), Red Iron Oxide (CI 77491), Black Iron Oxide (CI 77499)

QMS Medicosmetics

Normally I don’t include foundation ingredients lists (although to be fair I am not certain why I never have so maybe I will include them in the future) but it seemed like the right thing to do since skin care benefits were being claimed.

I had to try this product several different ways to see how it felt best to use this for me and to get a feel for the formula.  My skin tends to be in the what is called the normal to combination range.  In the summer I lean a little oily (especially in the t-zone) in the winter I lean a little to the dry, at least in my current climate.  I’ve lived other places where I was normal to dry year round or normal to oily year round. I really am sort of balanced on that dividing line which is why I end up with seasonal skin care.

First, let’s cover this as a day cream.  I tried it without my moisturizer under it and I tried layering it over my moisturizer. While it applied like a moisturizer, I did not like wearing it on it’s own. Without the moisturizing layer it felt oddly drying. However with the moisturizer underneath, I found I had to add less moisturizer to my skin when I followed with this.  Currently I am testing out the Dior Dream Skin Moisturizer. While I will be posting a review soon, I have used it long enough to know how it performs. 

On days without the QMS Active Glow, I used two pumps of the moisturizer, let it sit and then once absorbed went about my makeup application. If I used two pumps when I was using the QMS Active Glow, it was too much moisturizer. I’m pretty sure this is how I ended up with break outs on my chin this week.

amount of product used

If I used one pump of moisturizer and then applied the QMS after it absorbed, things went really well.  So I believe that the QMS Active Glow Tinted Day Cream does provide moisture to the skin, it just didn’t provide enough for my skin. Although I have no way of testing to see if the enriched vitamins were in facet absorbed I will say that with the exception of the chin break out while I was figuring out application, my skin looked and felt really good this week.

But I didn’t really use this as just a moisturizer.  I used it as my “foundation product” of the week. So how did it do in that capacity?

Well, first of all I have to say that it smells more like a foundation product than it does a moisturizer.  It smells like a healthy vitamin enriched foundation (no paint smells here) but still like a foundation product rather than a moisturizer. If I were categorizing products in a blind scent test, that is the category I would put it in, even though I am not exactly certain what the actual scent is composed of.

the glow with no powder

The tube has a pump dispenser which I like as it keeps the product away from air and light.  The pump worked easily.  I generally found I needed two pumps to cover my face.  Applying it was interesting.  It didn’t really care for the foundation brush so I applied it with my hands like a moisturizer.  This worked well. I then went in with my HUDA Beauty Sponge and made certain to smooth it out near my eyes.  That flat and pointed side was perfect for that and it was just the right light touch this product needed. 

For coverage, the tinted day cream was extremely light, but it immediately evened out my skin tone. It also made me extremely glowy.  I’m not a huge fan of the glowy look, but a quick powder took care of the glow.  I know I’m not a fan of the glow, but it felt really strange with this product. I think because it has the glow of a glowy foundation, but doesn’t react on the skin like a regular foundation.  It was almost like someone put glow drops in my moisturizer. So that I found a little strange.

My skin with just the QMS and a quick hit of powder. No red spots showing

However I have no other complaints.

Seriously, that was it’s one flaw.  It absorbed into the skin like a moisturizer so there was no worries about it cracking along the moving parts of the face or settling into fine lines.  It was almost non-existent on the skin in terms of feel, yet when I went to wash my face at night I found that it stuck with me throughout the day.  The even tones lasted all day and  as I applied the powder when the QMS Active Glow was still damp on the skin, it locked the loose powder into place.

It did however affect my entire makeup routine.  While I’ll get into that on Friday with my weekly Makeup bag post, most of the products I pulled this week I didn’t use because with the light coverage of this product, they felt like over kill.  I ended up using a loose setting powder with a pink tone which gave my skin all of the color it needed and then I used a light sweep of blush on my eyelids instead of eyeshadow as the eyeshadow palette I chose this week was simply too much. I also ended up switching out my lipsticks for balms and glosses.

This QMS Active Glow is perfect for a light, no makeup day, but it is not something you can build up.  I did try a foundation on top of it and in that instance the QMS felt more like a really good primer.  It gave me the even skin tone under my foundation so my foundation didn’t have to work that hard.  However, I have several primers that do just as well so it felt like a waste to just add foundation on top of this when it really worked well on its own. I do like the fact that if I was having a no makeup day and suddenly have to go somewhere I can just apply foundation on top of what I am wearing without having to scrub down, which is nice. Especially as I tend to go from working alone at my desk for long stretches of time to the occasional meeting.  Also because it is a moisturizer, it didn’t really have any issues rubbing off on my mask, which was extra nice.

I have to say in the end I am quite pleased to have this product in my collection.  It threw off my entire makeup bag this week, but it is going to be well used.  Because the tint is so light and designed to be used by multiple skin tones, I can use it year round without having to find a different shade and my skin reacted well to it.  The glow part I didn’t care for but it was very easily toned down into something wearable and I can see this being pulled out of my dressing table a lot in the future. Because of it, I don’t have an eyeshadow palette review ready to post right after this, because I really didn’t get to wear the eyeshadow this week. But I consider that a small sacrifice (and I’ll fill in a different post later this afternoon).  Apparently with QMS Medicosmeticals, the third time really was the charm. As long as the rest of my wek doesn’t start to resemble the Goldilocks story, I can live with that.


Huda Beauty

The Make Up Bag: September 11, 2020

The Make up bag used September 5th – 11th

This week I wanted to test one of the sample sized foundations I picked up in my summer shade.  It was the Yensa BC Foundation.  It is full coverage and is formulated as a mix of BB cream and CC Cream.  I really enjoyed using it this week.  While I will be keeping the remainder of the tube in my collection until I use it up, I will eventually end up purchasing a full size. It gave me excellent coverage without being cakey and it didn’t settle into my fine lines throughout the day.

To be honest, I am not as enthused by the primer I used with it.  I thought about using the Yensa primer, which I absolutely love as I thought it would pair well with the foundation (which it did actually, there was one day where I tested the two together and they are a winning combo), however I am trying to work through my sample sizes so that they don’t pile up and expire before I can try them and so that I can decide what full sized products I want to add to my dressing table in the future.

So the sample sized primer I pulled was the Too Faced Hangover Rx Replenishing face primer.  I can’t decide if I don’t like it or if I just didn’t like it with this foundation. The primer smells like coconut, which is not my favorite, but it isn’t strong enough to be a major issue.  It is white and massages into the skin like a moisturizer. It is very hydrating, but to be honest I didn’t notice much of a difference when I wore it under my foundation and when I wore the foundation with no primer.  By contrast when I wore the Yensa primer underneath, it enhanced the foundation.

I think I might like it better with a foundation that feels more drying on the skin as I suspect that this is either designed for those with dry skin or who are using a foundation that tends to dry them out.  While I have foundations that occasionally crease towards the end of the day I don’t really have any that leave my skin feeling dry.  What I might do is try this again in the winter time and see if I like it better when my skin is dryer.  I think the issue is that it is just not really designed for my skin type.  So at the moment, it will return to the dressing table for a later week long test but as of now I don’t think I will be picking up a full sized version of this primer as much as I tend to love Too Faced Products.

By contrast I brought out the Kristofer Buckle translucent loose setting powder to use again.  This is its second time in my makeup bag.  I picked this powder up as part of the Vanity Collection Kits that are offered on the Kristofer Buckle site. 

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I chose it because I wanted to test out the Triplicity Foundation Stick and because I absolutely adore the formula of the Cashmere Slip Lipstick.  The shade Bardot is the lipstick I grab before any other one in my collection.  Don’t get me wrong there are others I really love, but it is just such an excellently wearable formula. But that isn’t the point.  The point is I picked up the kit and the powder was in it.  Incidentally, I highly recommend the kits.  All of the products are full sized and it is a really affordable way to try out multiple products from the brand. And they are having a BOGO sale on the kits so it is a good time to stock up.

Affiliate Exclusive | BOGO on Vanity Kits

When I tested the products I more or less had a Kristofer Buckle themed Makeup bag that week.  I knew I loved the lipsticks and I absolutely fell in love with the Triplicity foundation stick and because of this I think the powder got shorted.  I remember thinking ‘it’s a good powder, but wow that foundation.’

Sometimes I get focused on one thing and let others slide.  This week I used the powder in my bag.  I was not distracted by the other Kristofer Buckle products. I have to say I found it better this time than I did the first.  It is very finely milled, sits well on the skin and does not cause a white cast in photos.  It also has zero scent.  After a couple of months of coconut scented powder (which I liked, it was a good powder) it was really nice to have a powder that has no scent. The little powder puff that comes with the powder is completely useless.  I used a powder brush and my Huda Beauty makeup sponge instead, but it is a much better powder than I remembered from my first use and I was happy to use it this week and I will be happy to keep it in rotation.

With powders I like to keep one pressed powder and one loose powder.  This week my pressed powder was the No. 7 Perfect Light pressed powder.  It is one of my go to powders.  I will often wear it simply over primer to control shine and it is the compact I reach for when I need to powder my nose mid day.  As I didn’t need to powder my nose this week beyond what I put on in the morning, I did not get to use this all that much.  I’m going to be keeping it in the makeup bag this week.  Also I think it will work well with the foundation product I plan to use this week. No. 7 is also having a sale at the moment 20% Off When You Spend $79 with code 20OFF. The sale runs through September 13th.



This week I pulled the Revolution Fast Base Concealer to use.  Because the foundation did not require any extra assistance, I ended up using it solely as an eyelid primer.  It worked well even though the shadows had a tendency to fade throughout the day.  It gave me a smooth, even toned base from which to start building my shadow looks.

Speaking of shadows, I used the Ciate London New England Palette this week.  The link will take you to the full review.  It is a bit mixed.  The pigments are more buildable than intense and if you want the shimmers to brighten you have to use a damp brush.  With a damp brush the shimmers and metallics are spectacular.  The look just has a tendency to fade to nothing after about six hours.

For my bronzer this week I took out my Space Case Fakeation on Mars Bronzer.  It Is one of those products that I tend to forget that I have.  The case is dark blue and tends to fade into the shadows of the drawer. 

The product itself is quite nice.  It is a buildable formula rather than an intensely pigmented one so if you are worried about applying too much bronzer and making your face look dirty then this might be an option for you to look into.   I really like it because I can decide just how dramatic I want to be.  I am also glad I found it now as it is one of those bronzers that really helps when your skin is going through seasonal tonal changes. 

It is great for darkening a slightly too light foundation without making your face look like it is overly powdered. (I’m sure there is another term for that, but you know what I mean).  I really like this when I am too light to still use my summer shades but not yet pale enough for some of my winter ones. If used when the foundation isn’t quite dry it really blends in nicely to help adjust the shade.

This week’s blush is one that came in a subscription box at some point, but I can’t remember which one.  I also forgot I had it.  I think what happened was that it came in and was a smaller size so when I put it with the other blushes it was over shadowed.  I don’t think I used it before this week.. It was the Mannakadar Buildable Blush in Bali Babe.  I would say that it is more bendable than buildable.  It is an intense pigment that does blend out well.  It does not go on light. That being said, I did like it.  Is it my favorite blush? No, and truthfully I probably won’t buy a full sized version. I will however use this until it is gone.  It falls into that good but not spectacular range.

Ofra and Bad Gal Bang, two of my favorites from this week’s bag

One product that always falls into the spectacular range is the Ofra Glazed doughnut highlighter.  It is simply stunning.  It applies bright but blends beautifully to a soft glow. This is a product I will use down to pan and then instantly replace. Normally I go for more gold toned highlighters, but this just blends so beautifully I am willing to lean towards silver.

I had two eyeliners in my Makeup bag this week.  One was the Hank and Henry Blickity Black and the other was the Milk Makeup Gel liner.  The Milk gel Liner is in a champagne nude type color (I couldn’t find the color on the liner) and it goes on creamy and smooth.  I used it in my water line.  It is more subtle than a white liner and gives a softer look.  I am a big fan of the formula and will be seeking out other colors to add to my collection.

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The Hank and Henry, not so much. The liner which is a calligraphy pen style, has the tendency to skip instead of giving a smooth line. It also bled a little into my fine lines, not a lot, just enough that I noticed when I was applying it.  While it stayed in place once it was on the lids, it tended to fade a little towards the end of the day, getting a kind of off black color by the time I went to take off my makeup. The final issue was that I had to kind of wait between eyes. I would get one done and notice it was skipping more the monger I used it so I would have to cap it and let it rest before doing the other eye.  I was not a fan.

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I am still a fan of the Bad Gal Bang mascara from Benefit, which was my mascara this week.  I think there is enough product for one , maybe two more weeks in the tube so back into the dressing table it goes, but it is with a pang of loss that I sent it away.  I really like this mascara.  The other Benefit mascaras are good and I enjoy using them, however this is my favorite.

And yes I realize I am sort of hoarding it a little bit but not just going ahead and using it up, but I have several opened mascaras to finish up as well as several unopened mascaras I want to try so once I finish this trial size I am not allowing myself to buy the fill sized version until I clear out a little more space in my mascara section.  So I am holding on to this as long as I can so that when I do finish it I can justify purchasing the full one. Don’t worry, it will still get used up within the six month deadline, I just want to hold on to it a little longer.

For my brows this week I kept the Hourglass brow pencil around for defining the bottom of the arch, but mostly used a tinted eyebrow gel.  I have several but I somehow never think to reach for them. This one is the Soap and Glory Archery Volu-boost brow fiber gel.  It’s the shade Talk of the Brown, in case you are curious. I really enjoyed using it.  It didn’t make my brows crispy or look plastered on (I really hate when bows are so insanely defined and plastered against the skin by gel that they look painted on.  I think it makes people look like cartoon characters. I am really happy that it looks like fluffy, natural looking eyebrows are trending.  While this did help me tame and define my eyebrows it didn’t give me cartoon brows so I was happy.  I really think having the eyebrow pencil to define the bottom helped and I like the Hourglass brow pencil formula.

Finally we come to the lips.  This week I had three options in my Makeup bag.  The first was a MAC Bullet style lipstick. It is in the shade mocha.  I always think of mocha as a brown shade but this read more pinky neutral on the lips this week. It was just as creamy and lovely to wear as I remember Mac lipsticks being and the shade went well with the pinkier tones of the eyeshadow palette without overwhelming them.

The trestique also went well with the brighter shades, blending but not competing with the eyes. I chose one of the lips from the Mini Matte Lip Collection, the Florence Fig to try out this week.  Again it is a neutrally pink, although slightly darker than the Mac. 

The darker Trestique is the top swatch with the lighter Mac below

I really love the formula of the Trestique lip products.  They are creamy and non drying and they last a really long time.  They need touching up after lunch, as do most traditional lipstick formulas but over all it lasts quite well.  I now have the set of mattes and the sheer glosses in the Trestique Minis and to be honest I am thinking of just putting them all in a jar and leaving them in the bathroom with my skin care so that they are on hand to reach for. 

I’ve actually had really good luck with the trestique formulas in general.  Their Bronzing stick is one of my favorites.  They are another brand where I almost have enough products to do a full face of just the brand.  I’ll have to take an inventory and see what I am missing and possibly do a full face make up bag one week.

ESSENTIAL 8 Routine – All In One Makeup Kit

The third lipstick product that was in my bag this week was the Clarins Velvet Lip Perfector.  I have to say I was very much looking forward to testing this out.  I’ve used several skin care products from Carins and I really liked the Lip water stain I tried.  However I did not use it this week.  I tested it out but the eye shadow palette tended to skew more pink tones and this was just a bit too red so it looked off.  I will be bringing it back this week and this week it will be used.  I am actually selecting my eyeshadow palette around this lip product. Next week will be it’s time to shine.

This week there is one final product in my Makeup bag and it is the setting spray. This setting spray however is a little something special. It is the Timeless Skincare HA Spray with Matrixl 3000 + Cucumber extract.  It was gifted to me by Timeless Skincare, along with several other skincare products I am trying. 

This is both a setting spray and skin care.  I posted a seperate post about this spray yesterday (the link above will take you directly to it). Because it is skin care and I do like to give skincare at least 30 to see if it works (as it generally takes that long to show any changes) this setting spray will be in my bag for at least the next month. Trust me that is no hardship. In addition to the skin care benefits which will bc covered at the end of the month long trial, it is a really good setting spray. In addition it’s cucumber scent makes me feel like i just left a spa. I know it is just the scent but it is really nice and extra refreshing. So I will be using it in my makeup bag as I do my full trial. Then I’ll start rotating other setting sprays in. 

And that concludes this week’s make up bag.  Next week I will be using the QMS tinted moisturizer.  From what I have heard, it is very light coverage so I will probably be going more natural with my look in the coming week. Which is fine with me.  It is still very hot here and I have no real plans to leave the house so easy and breezy suits me just fine.


This week’s Foundation: Yensa BC Full Coverage Foundation

This week I pulled a travel sized tube of the Yensa Color + Face Skin on Skin BC Foundation from my dressing table.  It is one of the few remaining sample sizes left in my dressing table and it is a summer shade I want to get some use out of before my tan fades.  In case you are wondering the BC part of the name stands for BB cream plus CC cream. It is listed as a full coverage foundation with eight superblocks essences and SPF40.

I recently watched a You Tube video with Wayne Goss explaining the amount of foundation you would need to wear before you actually managed to impart the SPF potential in foundation to your skin.  It is very eye opening and I highly recommend watching.  The basic review was you need far more product than you would ever rationally use to get the sunblock benefits so it isn’t a good idea to rely on its protection. He demonstrates it beautifully.

Which I didn’t rely on foundation spf before to be honest, so it feels like confirmation of me doing the right thing. Which is sort of unusual, but nice.  I like spf in the products I layer onto my face, but I add a full on sunblock as well.  So it’s nice to have the spf here, but it is more of an additional perk if it does anything.

As for the foundation itself, according to the Yensa Website …

8 BENEFITS FOR A SUPERFOOD GLOW™:

∞ Full coverage foundation

∞ SPF 40 protection

∞ Graceful aging moisturizer

∞ Built in concealer

∞ Provides brighter and even skin tone

∞ Helps minimize the appearance of pores
∞ Nourishes skin with 8 SuperBlacks Essence
∞ Blurs, imperfections, fine lines and wrinkles

 Ingredients in Tan Neutral Shade

Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Zinc Oxide, Cyclohexasiloxane, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Butylene Glycol, Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone, CI 77492, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Arbutin, Dimethicone, Sodium Chloride, Beeswax, Stearalkonium Hectorite, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, CI 77491, Phenoxyethanol, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, CI 77499, Ozokerite, PEG-10 Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Aronia Melanocarpa Fruit Extract, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Extract, Nigella Sativa Seed Extract, Rubus Fruticosus (Blackberry) Fruit Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Extract, Undaria Pinnatifida Extract, Laminaria Japonica Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Aluminum Hydroxide, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Adenosine, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Cananga Odorata Flower Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil, Cymbopogon Martini Oil, Michelia Alba Flower Oil, Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Leaf Oil, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Oil, 1,2-Hexanediol, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine) Oil, Sodium Hyaluronate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Lentinus Edodes Extract, Urtica Dioica (Nettle) Extract, Salvia Hispanica Seed Extract, Linalool, Limonene

yensa website

Those are all things I am down for. I have to admit that I do like the fact that each shade has it’s own ingredient’s list.  As you can see from the one I copied out, it is for the shade Tan Neutral, which is my summer shade and the shade I used. It is the seventh shade on the eleven spectrum range. 

To be fair, I think that I will be able to use this shade more or less until Halloween.  Then I would blend it with one shade lighter until the end of November and then use the one shade lighter until May, when I would gradually start blending the Tan Neutral into the Medium Gold, thus returning to Tan Neutral.

Anything lighter than the one below my current shade would be too light for me even in the deepest winter and any shade darker than Tan Medium would be far too dark for me even in the deepest of summer. While I can’t personally judge the effectiveness of the range on either darker or lighter skin tones, the shades do seem to have a great deal of flexibility in them. Currently I hover somewhere in the middle of the spectrum.

bare skin on the left and foundation on the right. While it covered most of my dark spots it left my freckles which I kind of like

With full coverage foundations, I am always a little worried that the foundation will end up coming off looking like a mask.  When people wear the full mask like foundations it actually sort of creeps me out a bit.  It is fine on camera, I get why you might want to look flawless on screen. And don’t get me wrong, I am working with my skin care routine to make my skin look as good naturally as I possibly can, but I still like when skin looks like skin.  With the mask like appearance of some full coverage foundations I start to have Phillip K. Dick based nightmares.

Do androids dream of electric sheep?

This is not something I need to worry about just before I go to sleep.

That being said, I adore Yensa’s primer from this line and I do not mind keeping a full coverage foundation around as long as it isn’t mask like.

Start of the day face

This was in no way mask like.  It went on like a dream.  It covered my dark spots and felt like a moisturizer.  It covered everything I didn’t want to show but wasn’t mask like in any way.  It wasn’t cakey and didn’t settle into my fine lines.  It looked just as good at the end of the day as it did at the start.  While it was matte in finish, which I really like, it didn’t give me dead looking skin which sometimes matte finishes can do.  I didn’t have any noticeable shine by the end of the day either, which is a minor miracle given the heat.  Admittedly this week is less humid than it’s been in a while, so that helped.  But I didn’t have to powder my nose midday.

To be honest, I can’t find anything wrong with this foundation.  The sample sized tube I used contained 10 mL of product.  The tube was packed full, there was virtually no air space left in the tube when I opened it.  The amount dispensed on my hand in the photo was way too much product.  It was my first use and I simply squeezed out too much.  I needed about half that amount to cover my face.  Looking at the tube now, I estimate I have about another two weeks left of use in the tube. 

end of the day, lipstick and eyeshadow gone but the foundation remains

The full size of this product retails for $38.  I have to admit I have looked all over and I can not find the amount of product in the full size.  I know from the photos it is far larger than the trial size  so I’m guessing between 30 and 50 mL, but I couldn’t find anything that listed it. Either way, since you need so little, it should last a while.

And $38 is not bad for a product that works as nicely as this.  I’ve certainly spent more. I can’t say I’m actually surprised by how well I like it.  The primer from this line as well as the Pumpkin Turmeric 2-in-1 radiance polishing mask (and exfoliating mask) are both on my list of favorites.  The mask smells so good you almost want to eat it instead of wearing it. This foundation by the way had no real scent to it at all.

Over all, I can’t really say enough good things about this foundation.  I don’t generally go for full coverage, and to be honest I think I ended up only applying enough product for medium and a little extra rather than full on full coverage, but I didn’t see the point in adding more product, when this amount worked so beautifully. This is definitely making my list for products to repurchase.


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The Make Up Bag: September 4th, 2020

The Makeup Bag used August 29 – September 4th,2020

This week I had a very light make up bag.  Don’t get me wrong, I pulled a lot of things that I just didn’t end up using.  The reason I ended up not using them was mostly due to both the foundation product and the eye shadow palette I chose. Before I get into that, I do want to mention the makeup bag itself. As those of you routinely reading this know, I have a subscription to IPSY. With each month a new makeup bag is delivered.

At the moment I am alternating using them and deciding which ones I want to keep and which to give away. The goal is to only keep the ones I like using and get rid of the ones I don’t. Also there is a Kusshi makeup bag I’ve been eyeing for a while as I think it would be perfect for my everyday use and I can’t justify purchasing a makeup bag when I have a drawer crammed full of bags I don’t use.

KUSSHI

So, I am undertaking the methodical clearout before purchase. The bag featured above will be staying. I like the way that it opens wide and because it has no real internal supports I can open it wide. I will be keeping it more for travel than everyday use though. The lack of internal support is great when packing, as is the quilted interior and it is a good bag to keep with the luggage. I need a bag with a little stiffer structure to it for everyday use so items don’t spill out all over my bathroom.

So in the end a good bag I am keeping, but not for everyday use. So on to the products.

The foundation I used was the Hey Honey Trick and Treat CC2 Cream.  While it is an excellent product, it is very light coverage.  It took away my red spots and covered my dark spots.  It made my skin look like skin only better.  I really liked it but because it was so light coverage, I found myself not wanting to reach for the more pigmented lip products I chose for the week. 

The Hey Honey cc Cream and the Cargo Palette

Even though I pulled several new lip products to try out I ended up reaching for my OFRA liquid lip in the shade Passadena which is a nice neutrally pink that goes with pretty much everything and my Perricone, MD No lipstick lipstick which is essentially a lip balm with the barest tint of color.

I did use the Banana Bright Face Primer from OLEHENRCICKSEN this week though and I absolutely loved it. It smelled fantastic and sat well under both my Hey Honey CC Cream and my Volition Sunscreen.

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While it is a brightening primer, it is not a dewy skin sort of primer.  It doesn’t give your skin that dewy/wet look.  It is still a mostly matte primer, it just sort of brightens the darker spots to help even your skin tone out.  Working with the CC cream it was fantastic.  The primer also felt really hydrating on the skin.

Lip swatches, the Ofra is at the top and the Perricone, md is below

It also smells like banana flavored candy.

Which I kinda liked.

The Cargo Cosmetics Nude Beach Eyeshadow Palette I wrote a post on which the link will take you to.  The simple break down is that the shadows are a good quality and easy to work with but the shade range of the palette means that it is really limited.  It would be good for a quick office look when you don’t have much time to get ready in the morning, but it is ultimately kind of boring. If putting it into a makeup bag I would add a couple of extra single shadows to back it up.

My blush, bronzer and highlight all came from the Real Her Ultimate Glow Getter Cheek Trio Palette.  Because it is small and I currently keep it with much smaller palettes I tend to forget about it as it hides in the shadows.  Which is a shame because each time I take it out I realize just how much I really like it.

I enjoy using all three products in the palette.  They work well for me.  As I am currently at my darkest skin tone of the year, the blush is a little on the lighter end of the spectrum for me, but still workable.  The blush I like better when my skin is a little lighter.  What I like about this trio is that I could go as light or as dark as I wanted with the products.  It is easy to apply just a little bit.  Usually I build it up, but this week with the light coverage CC Cream on my skin, light was the way to go, and this Real Her trio delivered. 

I really do need to find a better place to keep it though because I do want to use it more.  It is one of those gems that I tend to forget I own until; I am reminded of and then I really enjoy using and wonder how I could have possibly forgotten.  Although I am starting to see the dim outline of the pan in the bronzer and blush so clearly I don’t forget it that much. 

palette and brow pencil

The reason I remembered that I had the Ultimate Glow Getter Cheek Trio Palette from Real her this week was because I was trying out the real her eyebrow pencil.  It is a very thin pencil and has a spoolie on the other end.  The pencil is a little stiff getting started.  It is not a terribly creamy product which took some getting used to.  However it is a good shade match for me and I really like the precision point. 

Once it got going it was a decent enough eyebrow pencil.  Would I go out and repurchase it?  Probably not.  I will however use it until it is gone.  If nothing else it prompts me to remember the very excellent Cheek trio Palette. So while not my favorite brow product it works well enough and I will keep it around until it is used up.

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One product I won’t be keeping around is the Brown eyeliner by Antonym.  I was very excited as this is a clean brand and I was also happy that Petit Vour includes some makeup products in the box as well as skin care. This however was not for me.  I’m sure it is partially because I am used to using either liquid liners of gel pencils but I did not like using this pencil liner. 

It was hard and it felt like I was jabbing my eyes out.  It took a lot of effort to get the pigment on and I had a really hard time getting a smooth line.  Oddly enough when I tried it on my hand it glided smoothly over the skin and left a deep brown line.  When I went to put it on my eyes, it didn’t. 

The only thing I can think of is that I tilt the pencil more when testing on my hand and use the point more when applying to my eyes. It did apply better when I tilted it a bit and used the side of the pencil, but then the line was too thick.  I have slightly hooded eyes and using the side just put too thick a line for me. I did wear it like that for a day, but the brown faded down fairly quickly and was mostly gone by the time I went to remove my make up at night.  I am very sad as I needed a brown liner and I really wanted to try incorporating more clean beauty products into my dressing table. Unfortunately, this will not be one of them.

This week I used the gifted mascara from Tarte and I loved it just as much as I did the last time I used it.  This and Maneater might be my favorite Tarte Mascaras. It defined my lashes and really treated them well without being overblown on the low makeup looks the other products were creating.

Last but certainly not least are my powders.  I am happy to say that I finally finished my Ciate London Everyday Vacaay Coconut Scented loose translucent powder. T was an excellent powder and I enjoyed using it.  I do have a back up already stashed in my dressing table, but I will not be opening it for a while. 

While I liked it, I am about coconutted out for the time being.  The scent isn’t strong it is just that this was the summer of the coconut scented products and I need a little break.  Next week, I’ll have a different powder. But I am pleased that I used it up.  It always gives me a feeling of accomplishment when I use a product up in it’s entirety.

Its weird but the sight of the empties makes me happy. And sometimes a little sad.  But still like I accomplished something.

I had a sample of the Mac Studio Fix Pressed powder plus foundation in my makeup bag this week. I used it to help darken the slightly too light Hey Honey CC cream.  It worked well as a powder.  I don’t think I would use it as a foundation powder as it seemed more of a pressed powder product.  A really god pressed powder product but still not a foundation powder. 

Perhaps that could be because of the size.  It is after all only about the size of a quarter.  Perhaps with a full size I could better evaluate it.  I will say from the sample I would be willing to give the fill size a try.  It might not work as a foundation but it was a very good pressed powder.  While I will keep it in my dressing table and circle it back through, I am very much looking forward to using a regular sized pressed powder this week instead of the Lilliputian sample.

This week I forgot to add a setting spray to my makeup bag.  I got so used to having the Revolution Spray around that I simply didn’t think to grab one.  However I did have Timeless Skincare send several products to me, one of which was a spray that can be used as a setting spray.  It is more skin care than most setting sprays so I may have to look into a few details, but I think I will be incorporating it in my make up bag for a while.  As it is skin care it should be an interesting addition.

But that is for next week.  This week is complete. 

I pulled more lip products to use, but never got around to using them.  I also pulled a concealer but likewise never touched it.  While I have a couple of foundation products I want to try out I also have the QMS tinted moisturizer to use.  I suspect it will be as low key as the Hey Honey and will lend itself to a no makeup look.  So what I think I am going to do is put a regular foundation into the bag next week and use the QMS the following week.

Mostly because I want to try out an eyeshadow palette that looks to be more on the brighter side and I really want to use some of my newer lip products. I will be packing my makeup bag later this evening so I’ll see then how I feel about the foundation products then.

As my cousin (who adores the QMS tinted moisturizer) is eagerly awaiting my thoughts on it, there is always the possibility of a switch up. So we shall see. For now it is back to work for me.  I’m still trying to play catch up from the giant monkey wrench tossed into my week by the bank kerfuffle so I will be hard at work and eagerly anticipating my Friday afternoon Masking break. Also as there are too many Labor Day sales to actually cover in a regular post I will be posting a Labor Day Sales post later this afternoon covering all the sales you might want to look into this weekend. If you aren’t shopping, no worries just skip it, if you are looking to stock up and trying to find the best price,tune in. So until then my darlings, have a great Friday.

Cruelty-Free Beauty Box

Hey Honey Trick and Treat CC2 for this week’s foundation product

This week I used the Active Moisturizing Color Correcting Cream with Honey and Propolis Trick and Treat CC² CREAM as my foundation. In general I have good luck with Hey Honey Products.  Their Good Morning Facial Serum is fantastic and I have tried several face masks of theirs that I love.  I can’t say I am a big fan of their Take Away the Drama Peel off mask as it was one of the most painful peel of masks I have ever tried. But it was the only mask I wasn’t terribly fond of that they produce.

Don’t get me wrong, it worked fantastically well. It just made me cry and contemplate life with a copper face mask as part of my new identity. But every time I used it my skin felt fantastic once it was removed.

As a CC cream, this product has relatively light coverage. It is good for a no to low makeup day. It is supposed to more or less be a cross between a moisturizer and a cc cream. And I have to say, they kind of hit it out of the park with this product.  Normally, I am very suspicious of products that try to do too much, but this CC cream gave me good coverage with very little product, it didn’t seep into my fine lines or accentuate any of my blemishes. It felt like a moisturizer going on and stayed in place all day while covering the redness from blemishes. 

Now, I will say it is a very light coverage cream.  If you are used to full coverage foundation, you probably won’t like this.  If you are looking for medium coverage, you might not be a fan either.  This is very light coverage that is very natural looking.  It is your skin, but a little better. I used it both with and without a primer this week and while the primer smoothed out the look of pores, the CC cream still was light coverage that looked really natural. The primer just worked as an assist in the enlarged pore areas.

clean skin on the left, the CC cream on the right, the shade is a little light for me but not too bad.

While I didn’t wear it on my walks this week, I did wear it outside in the garden.  Not only did it work well with my sunscreen, but it stayed in place even when I was doing a little bit of sweating.  I was just taking out some vines that were now spent and needed to go to the compost bin so there was some sweating, but it wasn’t buckets. However, when a drop rolled down the side of my face it did not leave a track behind where it took the CC cream with it. 

start of day

I think that was partially due to the light coverage and partially due to the quasi-moisturizer nature of the product.  Either way, I really liked that aspect.  It also didn’t show any marks from my face mask either when I wore it to the gas station. Normally I just worry about the product settling into fine lines.  With masks on a whole new pattern of wear concern is emerging.

In general I tend to go for medium coverage and that tends to be where the bulk of my products fall.  Occasionally, I will try a full coverage as I do want to have a full coverage foundation I can rely on, but for daily wear I tend to go medium.  Even the BB Cream from Purlisse that I really like is technically medium coverage.  I have nothing that could really be considered light wear that I have tried (although I still have the QMS tinted moisturizer to try that may fall into this category).  For $38 I might actually add a full sized version of this to my list to have a light coverage foundation around. 

end of day

The color is slightly too light on me, but I do still have my summer tan (and probably will through October). I think that instead of using the rest of this tube (it is half full after a week of use) I might put it back in the dressing table and wait a month or so to see if the shade matches me more closely then.  It is only a slight bit too light so I think that will be enough time to tell. And truthfully it is the sort of light that can be adjusted with powder and a little bronzer.  The concern I have with this is that there are only 5 shades.  Because of the lightness of the coverage, I think the shades are capable of covering a wider variety of skin tones.  I just want to make certain that if I do decide this is the light coverage foundation I want, that I get the right shade.

Incidentally if you are wondering about my list, this year I am trying out a bunch of foundations, BB Creams and CC creams to create a list of go to ‘foundation’ products.  While I will keep rotating all of the open products that work decently well on me until they are used up, I am making a list of products to order once they are empty.  Ideally, I would like a full coverage, medium coverage and light coverage, but I suspect I won’t be able to pair it down to just three products. While there have been a couple of bad products and a couple of so so products, I have found quite a few at varying price ranges that have been really good. It will be an interesting end of the year recap for certain. But until then, there are several more foundations to try.


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The Make Up Bag: August 28th, 2020

The Make Up Bag Used the Week of August 22nd – 28th, 2020

I know usually the first things I list are the Foundation and the eyeshadow with links to the full reviews, but this week I have to start with my setting spray. 

completely empty

I know it seems like an odd place to start but I am pleased to announce that I have finally finished up my I heart Revolution Fixing Spray in the scent Peaches and Cream.  It was an older spray that has spent a great deal of time in my dressing table and I made a concentrated effort to use it up.  



It is a really good setting spray so using it wasn’t a hardship.  It had just been around a while.  But now it is finished and I can rotate other, newer products into my makeup bag. I’m sure at some point I’ll pick up another Revolution spray but I am rather happy to change scents for a while.  The Peaches and Cream was nice, but I’m ready for a change.

just a wee bit left

Speaking of using up products, I am close to finishing out my Ciate London everyday Vacaay loose setting powder.  Only a week or twos worth of product remains so the jar was in my Makeup bag this week and will remain until I finish it out.  Then I’ll use a different product. Or rotate through my other powders.  I was just so close to finishing this that I just wanted to concentrate on it. And it is a good powder. Incidentally at the moment the look Fantastic Website has Ciate London Products on sale up to 70% off. and they are just kicking off their Labor Day sales. Right now you can get 22% off Sitewide with the code LABORDAY22. That sale runs through September first. They also have a Flash Sale! 40% off Select Peter Thomas Roth (valid through 8/29). I actually just finished testing out two moisturizer samples from Peter Thomas Roth and will be posting a review on Monday. (I’m also going to be trying to order the Hungarian Mineral Water moisturizer this afternoon. I love when my skin care trials and sales meet. It makes me feel the universe is working with me instead of against. But moving on back to the makeup bag…).

My foundation this week was the Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation.  I ordered the sample packets to try out the shade ranges.  I’m pretty certain that 213 is my shade but I will be trying the other packets periodically to make certain before I order a bottle.  As it is a $77 foundation, I want to be certain of my shade before I purchase. The samples came with a coupon for $10 off a purchase of the full sized foundation as well, which I thought was nice. While the link will take you to the full review I have to say that this foundation was absolutely amazing. I was really hoping it wasn’t.  I was hoping I could say, yeah it’s nice but not really worth the price.  Except that it is actually worth the price.

Discover the cult favorite Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation. Designed to give skin the same youthful glow you experience right after a facial, Aqua Foundation’s long-wearing liquid formula instantly illuminates dull skin.

My eyeshadow palette this week was also worth every penny I spent on it.  However in this case that was only $4.99.  I used the My Glamour Squad Eye shadow Palette from Wet ‘n Wild this week.  It performed fantastically well for me and I am actually thinking of picking up more Wet’n Wild eyeshadow Palettes.  In the post about the shadow palette, I stuck with finger swatches because that is what I always do and I wanted to stick with the standard. The finger swatches came out poorly. This formula works better with a brush.

I loved it on my eyes. I felt bad about the swatches so I did a quick swatch with a brush to show a little better how they apply. So that’s why there is a better swatch picture of the mattes in this post.

Actually the Coffee Cat palette they just came out with is right up my alley and will probably be one of my next purchases. As long as the formula of the shadows remains the same, I will be a big fan of Wet ‘n Wild’s shadows.

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While I used my Pretty Vulgar concealer under the shadows to give me a nice base to work with, I didn’t need to use the Pretty Vulgar lid primer.  So even though the official lid primer was in my bag, I didn’t need to use it with these shadows.   

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I like both the primer and the concealer, but I think next week I am going to switch out the concealer but keep the lid primer around.  I might not need the lid primer, but it is a new eyeshadow palette I will be working with so I like to have it around just in case.

Making a return trip into my Makeup bag this week was the Touch in Sol No Poreblem primer.  As always it performed beautifully.  I love the way it feels light, yet fills in my pores.  It is one of my favorite primers.  This week I have two new primers that have been added to my dressing table by subscription boxes.  I’m not sure yet which I’ll try out, but next week will feature a brand new primer.  The Touch in Sol is not going anywhere but back to my dressing table. 

For blush and bronzer this week I turned to Julep.  I really like the shade of the pore minimizing blush.  I have the shade rosewood which is my perfect summer shade.  I think I’m going to need to get a lighter tone for the winter months though.  I keep poking around on the Julep site to see which shade looks like it will work.   It is a great formula and one I don’t mind having multiples of.  At the moment Julep is having a sale as well so I’m hoping to make a decision before the sale ends. There’s nothing like a deadline right?

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I also used the Julep bronzer.  While not as spectacular as the blush, it is a good bronzer.  It is buildable and really easy to blend.  I use the shade medium tan and I think it will work for me both with my tan and when my skin grows winter pale.  The only difference is really how much product I use.  I use more in the summer but I really think just a lighter application will keep it working for me in the winter.  It is one of the reasons I really like the buildable formula.  It means I only need to buy one shade.

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For my mascara I paired the eyeko lash alert mascara with the doucce Punk Volumizer.  The eyeko mascara is great at lengthening and the doucce is great for bulking up the lashes so it was a good pair.  While I like the eyeko lash alert, I prefer the formula of their black magic mascara. This was the second week for the Lash Alert sample size and I managed to use up the remaining product in the tube.  So it will be sent to the empties bin. 

I’ll probably pick up the Black magic mascara or an eyeliner next time I shop with Eyeko mostly because I prefer the formula but it is still a pretty good mascara.  The Doucce was better paired with the eyeko, but still just an okay mascara.  I’ll be using it up and saying goodbye rather than repurchasing.

My eyeliner this week was from Beauty for Real.  It gave me a nice thin line of mascara and was easy to work with.  While it didn’t seep into my fine lines, it took a little while to dry down and was prone to smudging before it dried down.  Once dry it was fine, but you just have to be careful those few minutes.  I did notice that by the end of the day, the eyeliner had faded a bit, going a little more gray than black.  While it was a decent eyeliner and I will continue to use it, this isn’t my favorite and once it is done, I won’t be repurchasing it.

My highlighter this week was the floss sunlit from the August Allure Beauty Box.  It was an interesting product.  When you look at it it looks kind of silvery, but when you apply it, the highlighter turns more gold.  As I prefer the golden highlighters with my skin tone, I was okay with the change. 

highlight swatch, not blended in

What I found interesting was that it applied better with a finger than with a brush.  It was rather disappointing when I used a brush to apply it.  It faded away to almost nothing.  When I used my fingertip to apply it worked fabulously well. It blended nicely and provided just the right amount of glow.  I don’t know if I was just using the wrong sort of brush, but I’m not adverse to applying it with my fingers.  I think the fingertip might work better because of the product’s consistency.  While it is technically a powder, it is not very powdery and has almost a jelly consistency.  It’s kind of strange, like it is hallway between the two.  It is still powder and not a jelly but it has almost that wet touch to it. I kind of liked it actually.

And finally we come to the lips.I had four products in my bag this week.  I had a Huda Beauty lip countour in the shade Trophy wife, two liquid lipsticks from Bite Beauty (Caramelized and Infuse), and a lip gloss fromC’est Moi in the shade opulence.

The lip gloss was nice.  It had no real color to it so swatches just show up as a glossy spot. It sat well on the lips and wasn’t too terribly sticky.  It was a lip gloss so there was some stick factor, but it wasn’t too much.  It is a nice lip gloss that I used both on its own and over other products this week. 

The Huda Beauty lip contour I used both as a lip liner for Infuse and on my entire lips.  I like the color and under the C’est Moi lip gloss it wasn’t too drying.  It is still a lip liner so there is some drying when used this way, hence the lip gloss over it to make it more comfortable.  I also used Caramelized to alter the color a bit. 

Caramelized by Bite Beauty is just a little too neutral of a shade for me to wear on it’s own.  On me it makes my lips disappear into my face.  However it is an excellent lip topper.  I used it over Trophy wife to make that a little less pink and I used it with Infuse to make it a little less vibrant. Typically with bite beauty I end up going for their bullet style lipsticks (which I absolutely adore). But I really like these liquid lips. 

Lip swatches, Huda in Trophy Wife on top Caramelized in the middle and Infuse at the bottom (Bite Beauty)

The formula never really dries down so there are a few lip prints left behind, but it is a very comfortable formula to wear.   While I like the color of Infused, I often none it down with Caramelized.  I’ve done so often enough that Caramelized is starting to get a pinkish tint to it. Who knows, a few more weeks of use and the color might have altered enough so I can wear it on it’s own. 

Limited Time: The Bite Vault is Open! Some of our OGs are back (but not for long) so stock up while you can. (ends 9/2)

One thing I like with this is that the color remains for most of the day.  It dims a little in the afternoon, but I think that is because some of it wears off during lunch.  But at the end of the day, I was still wearing lipstick.   And I do like a lipstick that can last the day with me.

So that was my makeup bag this week.  I had a great deal of fun with it and it helped me start to add to my list of products I want to pick up in the near future. I hope this has helped anyone else reading to plan their purchases as well.


A week of Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation

The sample packs of Light and medium shades

This week’s foundation was one I have been wanting to try for a long time.  I finally ended up going on the Koh Gen Do website and ordering two sample packets.  I ordered both the light and the medium shade packets of their Aqua Foundation.

One of the packet samples broken out, There are two of each shade (I dropped one before I took the pic), so I ended up with 20 sample packets

The packets are $8 each and they have shade ranges from light to dark.  What I like is that the shades overlap on the ends.  For example the darkest shade in the light packet is also the lightest shade in the medium packet.  Which was a bonus for me because that happens to be my shade.  I am the darkest of the light and the lightest of the medium.  And there is some flexibility in their colors so I think this shade will match me for a long stretch of the year.

Open and poured into a lidded jar kept things from getting messy

In each of these $8 packets there are two packets of each shade.  Because I prefer light to medium coverage from my foundation, I found that each packet covered me for two uses. Rather than have an open packet around the sink where the product could dry out, I pressed the empty Ursa Major Flash Mask container into use.  I squeezed the entire packet into the little container and found it kept it nicely and neatly ready for use. Having a place to put the remainder also kept me from applying too much product in an attempt to not waste the remainder. 

I learned that lesson from the last foil packet I tried.  I am especially glad that the Koh Gen Do company offers samples of their foundation for sale as a full sized bottle costs $77. While I don’t mind occasionally splurging on a pricey item, if I do I want to make certain I get the correct shade. I feel much more confident in choosing my foundation now that I’ve tried a sample.  But before we get into my trial for the foundation, let’s look at the product info.

Born in Tokyo and raised on movie sets around the world, Koh Gen Do combines the planet’s most precious botanicals with Japanese skincare technology to nourish and protect your complexion’s natural ability to regenerate and thrive. Over thirty years later, Koh Gen Do remains a favorite among professional makeup artists and can be found regularly on the sets of blockbuster movies. Our secret to success on screen and off is simple: healthy, dewy skin enriched with natural essences looks as fresh on camera as it does in life.

At the heart of Koh Gen Do is the belief that everything you apply on your skin should nurture its radiant vitality. Whether you’re using one of our cleansers or cult-favorite powders, every Koh Gen Do elixir nourishes and enhances the luminosity of your complexion. Our products enrich the skin’s natural healing abilities, leaving your complexion soft, firm, smooth and flourishing. Backed by cutting edge Japanese skincare technology and healing plant-based ingredients, our gentle formulations feed and repair skin for a fresh, dewy complexion that glows even without a single drop of makeup.

The coveted Aqua Foundation, known for giving skin the same youthful glow you experience right after a facial, is redesigned for increased coverage, radiance, hydration and longevity. Formulated with our signature Gloss Film Powder, the light-diffusing minerals brighten and minimize pores, while resisting sweat and oiliness. This breathable serum foundation contains weightless skin-conditioning emollients that improve the hydration and health of skin for a flawless and comfortable complexion all day.

With the Decorte Liposome Serum on Monday and this foundation, it seems to be the week of Japanese beauty. Now I am generally not one for a dewy look and I am happy to say, I didn’t get it with this one.  As with all my foundations I applied it first on bare skin with no primer underneath.  These are the pictures I’m using in this post so there is no confusion about what was primer and what was foundation.  After, I tried it with my Touch in Sol No Poreblem primer and then with the Primer and powder under the foundation.

Putting on the foundation. I dot it into place and then use my foundation brush to smooth it into place and then touch up the corners with a makeup sponge.

While I don’t go for the dewy look, I also don’t go for full coverage either.  This meant I needed very little product to cover my face (hence the two uses per packet). Putting the foundation on felt like applying a light weight moisturizer.  It smoothed quickly and easily over my skin and felt absolutely weightless.  Honestly it really did feel like I was putting on a light weight moisturizer.  There was no cakiness and the product didn’t settle into any of my fine lines. 

I applied the foundation after my massive sweatfest of a walk in the mornings, when I walk, it is me and my sunscreen.  All makeup comes later. I did move around in the garden a bit so there was regular sweat throughout the trial of this foundation and I have to say, it performed beautifully.  The Aqua Foundation stayed in place until the cleansing oil took it off. I have to say it did a fair job with my pores.  I liked my skin texture better with a primer underneath, because it gave me an extra smooth look, but I didn’t feel like I had to wear a primer underneath.  This foundation wasn’t really pore filling, but it didn’t emphasize my pores either.

Before is clearly on the left and the after on the right. I really liked the way this felt on my skin and even without primer I loved it. With primer I was over the moon.

To be honest, I was kind of hoping that I wasn’t going to like this product.   I was kind of hoping that it was over hyped and not something I loved.  Because quite frankly I didn’t need to fall in love with a $77 foundation. But alas, I seem to have done just that.

This Aqua Foundation was kind of amazing.

It’s the kind of product I can very easily see myself putting a few dollars away for each month until I have used up enough of my other foundations to justify the purchase.  Luckily, it will take me a while to work down through my stockpile because I know when I go to order the foundation there are going to be other products I want to pick up as well.

Starting the day

My goal this year was to try out many different types of foundations, looking for the few foundations that I could keep as my go to foundations.  At the moment Kristofer Buckle Triplicity Foundation Stick, Pretty Vulgar Lava Water Foundation, and ELF top the list. 

End of the day

These three are now joined by Koh Gen Do. It is the most expensive on the list at the moment, but I have to say, it is also at the very top of that list. I don’t know if it will maintain its king of the hill status, but because I needed to use so little of it, I have several extra packets left so I will continue to test them against other products (and use the different shades as my skin loses its summer tan).

Even if it does end up getting knocked down a peg by another product, it is still in the top tier of products and will eventually make a full sized appearance on my dressing table.


At the moment the Koh Gen Do Site is having a sale. The sample packets I picked up were $4 instead of $8 on their sale page. I wasn’t charged shipping for my packets as they were so light which makes it even better. There are other sales on as well. As a warning Sale items tend to go quickly. As of me writing this they had the packets in stock. The Aqua foundation itself was on sale as well, but was sold out in my shade. I’ve got my fingers crossed for a restock and will be lurking on the site to check.

Discover the cult favorite Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation. Designed to give skin the same youthful glow you experience right after a facial, Aqua Foundation’s long-wearing liquid formula instantly illuminates dull skin.

The Make Up Bag: August 21st, 2020

The Makeup Bag used August 15-21, 2020

This week I tried to focus on items I never tried before so it was a week of first impressions.  To start off with I used the Ciate London Extraordinary Foundation in the shade 127 Y Bamboo. 

It turned out to be a great shade for my deepest summer tan, although the clock is ticking as to how long I will be able to wear the shade.  I liked the foundation enough that once I clear out some of my current foundations, I will be picking up a lighter shade. 

While the link above will take you to the full review the basic summary is that it is a good foundation that feels weightless.  It has a bit more shine than I like but is easily toned down by a matte setting powder.  I am still working my way through the Ciate Everyday Vaccay Setting powder (I have only a few more weeks and it will be used up) and it worked really well with this foundation.

Less well received this week was the Ciate watermelon burst hydrating primer.  Don’t get me wrong it is a good hydrating primer.  The Extraordinary foundation just needed a pore filling primer underneath it to look it’s best.  This was not that primer. 

I called in the Benefit Porefessional primer though and it paired amazingly well with the foundation. There were a couple of days where I didn’t bother with foundation because I knew I was going to just be running in and out of the heat all day.  On those days I tend to use a primer and a dusting of powder. 

In that application, I really liked the watermelon burst primer.  It locked the powder in place and didn’t let my skin dry out.  The primer also has a nice watermelon scent to it that made me crave Jolly Ranchers all week.  It just didn’t pair well with the foundation I chose this week as it required something pore filling and not hydrating. I will be keeping the ciate primer around and using it again when a hydrating primer is called for. As winter dries my skin, that shouldn’t be a problem.  That I’m keeping the Benefit Cosmetics Primer around goes without saying.

Get a free Benefit duffle bag with orders $100+.* Use code: GLAMONTHEGO. Valid through 9/4/2010.

My NARS sample sized bronzer in Laguna finally starting to show a dip in the center.

I didn’t have a new bronzer this week so I went with my small sample size of NARS Laguna.  I absolutely love this bronzer.  It is a great color and a wonderful formula.  However I am not allowing myself to purchase a full sized version until I use up the sample. I am actually starting to feel a dent in the center of the pan so I will be reaching for this periodically in an effort to use it up. Plus I can’t remember when I got the sample so I’m worried it might be getting a bit old.  And if at all possible I like to use things up rather than throw them out because they are expired.

The blush was new to me and came from the August Look Fantastic Box.  It is the bellapierre cosmetics mineral blush in the shade amaretto. It is a loose blush which I haven’t used in a while.  For a long time though the loose mineral blush from bareMinerals was my go to blush so I am familiar with loose blushes and actually don’t mind them.  It is easy to apply too much so there is some technique involves with the tapping out of product, so it did take me a little while to get back in the swing of things.

Once I did I really liked it.  The powder applied well, blended easily and stayed all day.  Like the foundation though, it is a product that works best for me when my skin is at its darkest tan.  I suspect this is more of a summer blush for me as once my tan fades, it might be a bit too dark. For now though, the color was perfect.  And luckily the product is good for 36 months so I don’t have to worry about using it up in the next month or so.  As Look Fantastic sent a full sized blush in the August box, it will last a while.

My concealer this week was the Pretty Vulgar concealer.  I really like the formula.  Usually I use the concealer as eyelid primer as well and usually the Pretty Vulgar formula is really good in that capacity.  The eyeshadow  palette I was working with wasn’t the best this week so I pulled in the Pretty Vulgar lid primer as back up.  It is like Velcro for eyeshadow. 

It did its best, but the shadow didn’t help it. As I am planning to practice working with cut creases, I will probably be keeping both of them around in the following week as I find them both useful for that.

So be prepared for repeats with those. At some point I am going to have to pick up a pretty vulgar eyeshadow palette.  I love their foundation and mascara as well as their concealer and lid primer, it seems only logical. 

Pretty Vulgar Cruelty Free Makeup!

Also they just came out with a new blush palette that looks really interesting. I’m actually debating whether to pick that one or a benefit cosmetics blush palette.  I can’t justify picking up both at the same time, but I will probably talk myself into one of them.

There is a full review of the eyeshadow palette I used this week that this link will take you to.  It is the Morphe + Manny MUA Glam Palette.  I was not a fan.  While not the greatest formula, it wasn’t horrific.  It was just boring and meh.

There are two highlighters in this palette as well and they too fell into the category of nothing special. I suspect in my next declutter, this palette will be one of the first to go bye-bye.

For my eyebrows I kept the Hourglass brow pencil around for another week.  I really like it and to be completely honest I just forgot to change it out when I swapped out my makeup for the week.so it was an accidental repeat.  I’ll be sure to choose something new for the brows next week to make up for it.

Both my mascara and eyeliner were new this week.  The eyeko lash alert mascara came in my Look Fantastic Box in August along with the blush. I have to say while it was a pretty good mascara with great lengthening abilities.  I prefer eyeko’s black magic mascara. However it was a good mascara. 

The go-to brand for eyes, focused on our award-winning mascaras, eyeliners & brows.

Since sample sized tubes like this generally have only about a two week supply of product in them, what I am going to do is keep this around and pair it with a volumizing mascara. I have several that are nearing the end of the time I am willing to keep them around and need to be used up before they expire. Doubling the mascara will give me the lashes I want and help me not waste product.

My eyeliner this week was the Wander Beauty skyliner in black.  It is a gel formula which isn’t my favorite formula however I have to say I was interested by the description.  It is infused with olive oil (and other oils) to make it extra creamy and smooth to apply.  I have to say it was.  It didn’t tug at the skin as I applied it at all and glided into place as it was supposed to.  The pencil even comes with its own sharpener. 

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The only thing I didn’t like about the sharpener was that you had to roll the product out quite far to get it to sharpen and I suspect at some point I’m going to end up snapping a chunk of it off.  That is the down side of the creamy texture; the point blunts really quickly so you have to sharpen it a lot.  I will say though once in place, you need a makeup remover to get it off of the skin. When applying it you have a very limited window for adjustment before you have to accept that it is set in place for the day. Over all a pretty good product though and one I am happy to have in my collection.

This week I continued to use down my I heart Revolution Setting spray.  I love this setting spray, it is just getting along in age and I am fairly certain it is either at or past its expiration date.  I can’t remember when I bought it to be honest.  However I have only about one more weeks’ worth of product in the spray bottle so I will be using it up this week and then trying out something else.

This of course brings us to the lips.  Here I must confess I had a change of plans after packing my makeup bag for the week.  This week I put a neutral C’est Moi lip gloss, a Bite Beauty Liquid lip and a Huda Beauty lip contour in my bag.  They were all neutral shades.  I balanced them out with an elf liquid lip in the shade red vixen and a Clarins water lip stain in the shade red water.

e.l.f.: Free shipping every Friday for loyalty

Once I tried out the eyeshadow palette and realized no matter what color combo I was going to try it was all going to come out as a basic neutral, I ended up balancing it with the elf and the Clarins and didn’t reach for the other lip products at all. So the lippies I did not use last week will go back to the makeup bag for next week.

The elf and the Clarins were both fantastic reds.  The elf dried down nearly instantly so any adjustments had to be made immediately or you were suck with them (or forced to get a cotton swab with makeup removing oil and work delicately).It never smeared or left lip prints behind and once on I forgot I was wearing it. I have to say elf has been killing it lately.  From this lip to the well thought out bite sized palettes, I am very impressed.  This red faded a little throughout the day but at the end of the day it was still a vibrant red. It was a deeper, more blue toned red than the Clarins.

The Clarins Water lip stain was a bright red, that oddly smelled of cherries. I found it a little odd but strangely appealing. The scent didn’t last all that long though. Once the water stain dried it was pretty much gone.  The lip water is applied with a little brush and as the name suggests, feels like you are brushing water on your lips.  I found that if you applied it lightly to the center and used a finger to smooth it over the lips, you could create a light wash of red color.  If you applied it all over the lips and just let it dry then you had a much brighter cherry tone. 

It took a little longer to dry than the elf, but once in place it stayed in place.  And when I say stayed in place I mean makeup removers could only dim it, not defeat it.  The next morning I woke with my lips still pink. For me it wasn’t an issue as I was putting the elf red vixen over it, but in general I had very pink lips this week. If I were going somewhere and I was going to be out and about with no chance to touch up my makeup, the Clarins Water lip stain is a formula I would reach for.  If you are interested you can purchase the Clarins Water lip Stain at All Beauty. They are currently having an end of summer sale with 50% off most (if not all) of their items. It is well worth checking out.

If you give the Clarins a moment to dry it will stay with you and not smudge a lick throughout the day. And something about it just feels summery.  Maybe it is the pink tone and the cherry scent.  Either way, one application and you can forget it is even there. I am definitely going to see what their color range for this line is because if they all perform this well, it would definitely be worth keeping them around.

As a bonus I should say that neither of these lip products smudged the inside of my mask. That’s how well they dried down and stayed dried down. And neither caused my lips to go desert dry either.

Before I close this post I want to mention some tools.  I am still using and loving the bdellium tools 999 master blender brush.  It fits perfectly in my hand and does wonders with my foundation application.  I know they have a bit of a sale going on right now so if you are looking for some new brushes, now might be the time to look into them.

Studio 950 Oval Multipurpose Brush

The makeup sponge I’ve been using is from Huda Beauty and I really like the balance it strikes between soft and firm.  The flat side has proven more useful than I would have imagined for when I do detail work with the pointed end.  It is over all a nice, well thought out make up sponge.  I plan to use it until I have to buy a new one and then, unless I try another one I like better, I will be repurchasing it.

This week I added the complex culture powder brush that I received in August’s IPSY box and I am really liking it as well.  The bristles are dense, yet soft and it is perfect for powder application.  I very much enjoyed using it with my loose powder this week.  I think I will continue to use the Alamar powder brush for my pressed powders though because it seems to work better with them than the fluffier rounded end brushes, but for loose powders I am happy to have this brush on hand.

Next Week’s Foundation

And that concludes my notes from the Makeup Bag this week.  Next week I’ll have a whole new slate of products to test out, including a sample of the Ken Gen Do Aqua Foundation.

It is apparently a makeup artist favorite (according to reviews)so we’ll see how well it works for a writer. As always I’ll be back for the afternoon face mask later today.  This afternoon I’m giving the Super Silver Haze purifying Mask from Makeupdrop a try.  Until then, have a great Friday.


Ciate London Extraordinary Foundation Review

Recently there have been a lot of Ciate products finding their way into my makeup bag.  Some come from subscription boxes, others I pick up on my own.   The first Ciate product I picked up was the Jessica Rabbit eyeshadow Palette.  Every time I see it I remind myself that I want to pick up other products from that line.  I especially want the Jessica Rabbit compact, plus every time I reorder the Ciate loose translucent powder, I end up eyeing the glitter flip liquid lips.

I suspect that once I’ve used up a few more products and cleared out a little space in my dressing table, I will give in and order some lippies to try out at the very least. I can forget about compacts for a while, but I will almost always give in to the siren sound of lipstick calling my name.  Well, as long as I don’t get distracted by Caudalie and Molton Brown that is. I usually start looking at makeup on the Look Fantastic site but almost always end up veering into skincare and bath products. (incidentally Look Fantastic has a sale going on 10% off with the code LF10 as well as a Countdown Sale)

But my haphazard collection plan and multiple distractions are stories for another time, today we are here to talk about the Extraordinary foundation. According to the product page…

Long-lasting with a weightless, second skin finish, Extraordinary Foundation gives a medium coverage glow whilst blurring pores and imperfections. This versatile, buildable formula can be buffed into the skin for sheer finish, applied just where needed or layered all over for a fuller coverage.

At 50ml, Extraordinary Foundation is 66% larger than the average foundation size, plus the soft tube means it’s great for travel!

Botanical extracts such as Mimosa and Arctic Rose that help to instantly lift and energize skin leaving it soft and radiant, plus hydrating hyaluronic acid, moisturising squalene and oil-controlling bamboo extract. Up to 16-hour wear, Hypoallergenic, Non-comedogenic (does not block pores), and Vegan.

Okay so medium coverage is generally my favorite in the foundation arena.  I’m not so much of a glowy foundation sort of person, but I figured I was using a matte setting powder over it, that might help. Incidentally this week in my makeup bag I also had the Ciate Watermelon burst Primer and the Ciate Translucent setting powder. I really should have taken out my other Ciate products and just had a solo brand bag this week, but I am still missing a couple of items so, I’ll be doing that at a later date. When last I checked the bronzer was still listed as sold out.

Anyway, I picked up the shade 127Y Bamboo for my foundation.  As always when ordering foundation on line I crossed my fingers and hoped I picked the right shade.  Oddly enough The shade was an exact match for my summer tanned skin.  In about a month I will not be able to wear it as my skin will have lightened too much so I’ll have to take a guess on a winter shade, but that is only if I really like the foundation.

Bare skin on the left, just foundation on the right. While I love the coverage, I think it definitely needs a primer underneath. (no primer in this photo)

First I applied it.  As with any new foundation trial, I gave it a week’s worth of use.  The first day I tried it with no primer, the second with a primer (in this case the Watermelon Burst primer) and then with primer and powder under the foundation. For this one I actually tried out a different primer (the Porefessional mattifying primer) but I’ll get to why in a little bit.

First the solo run.

I applied the foundation using my favorite foundation brush (999 Master Blender from Bdellium Tools)and used my Huda Beauty blending sponge to really get into the corners and smooth out any lines left behind. As an aside, I have to say I have been really liking my HUDA Beauty sponge.  It has just the right balance between firm and soft and that flattened spot is really helpful. I know at some point I need to do just a tool review post, but seriously, The Master Blender and Huda, both fantastic.

Full face at the start of the day (i.e. before I’ve done my hair), Incidentally the lip is and elf liquid lip matte – dries down almost instantly but isn’t terribly drying on the lips. I forgot I was wearing it until my baby came home and commented very long wearing too.

So, the foundation is listed as medium coverage, but buildable.  I found one pump gave me enough product to cover my entire face. While I have some dark spots – the ghosts of breakouts prior, and some pigmentation and under the skin clogged pores, at the moment my skin has no major break outs. (look at the chin to see dark spot coverage.)  I am dealing with more of a textural issue than eruptions.  I’m sure in a week or so that will change as things erupt, but for now I mostly needed to conceal dark spots.

Which this foundation did really well with just one application.  I did not need to build it up.  The foundation went on smoothly and easily.  It covered my dark spots and yes, like the product claimed, the effect was very skin like. It was a bit glowier than I generally prefer but not over the top and a dusting of powder knocked it down to my preferred level. While I had no issues with the application, it is the wearing that tells the tale.

Over the course of the day (and the several days that passed making up this week) I wore my makeup for about 8 hrs each day.  Since the foundation is supposed to last for up to sixteen hors with no issues, I thought this was a fair time frame.  I’ll be honest, on occasion I will find myself wearing makeup for a ten hour stretch, but even that is rare these days. 

End of the day on the day with no primer underneath. I get texture showing in my cheeks as the day progresses without primer under most foundations and you can see around my nose the glow returning as the powder wore off bute even without primer it wasn’t terribly bad, just not as good as it could be.

I had no issues with the foundation crumbling or peeling away from the skin during those eight hours, regardless of what I put under it.  However what I put under it did affect the appearance.

Now first off with all of the trials I put it through, I did find that by mid day I needed to pat my t-zone with powder.  I think partially that was less the oil coming through the foundation and more the fact that I don’t really care for glowy skin and the powder was wearing off.  Either way, a quick moment with my compact and I was good to go for the rest of the day.

Now the rest of it.  I found that with no primer, while the foundation stayed in place, by the end of the day, the texture in the larger pores of my cheeks by my nose were starting to show a bit. See photo. 

The Ciate Watermelon Burst Primer I used this week is not really a pore filling primer. Its a good primer if I am just applying primer and powder for the day, which I am known to do, but it is not pore filling. Used alone under the foundation, it didn’t really produce too much of a change. 

Applying powder to the primer and then applying my foundation over it helped prevent the foundation from sinking into my pores and exposing the texture to the world at large.

While I was also trying out the Watermelon Primer this week, I did have one day where I pulled the Benefit PoreFessional Primer out of my dressing table.  I chose it because I have used it enough to know how well it works and I wanted to see how it worked with the foundation. 

Minimize pores and dryness with Benefit’s NEW The POREfessional: Hydrate Primer!

With the pore filling primer underneath, this foundation was fantastic.  There was absolutely no issue with texture.  In addition, because the pore filling primer from Benefit is a mattifying formula, it tempered the glow of the foundation to something I didn’t feel I had to add extra powder to during the day.  I added the setting powder when finishing my makeup, but I didn’t have to go in with a compact mid day.

I really liked using this foundation and I think I may look into one of their lighter shades.  While this shade suits my current skin tone, this is as dark as I will ever really be and soon I will begin the fading process. So the Bamboo matches me at my absolute darkest.  While good to have, it doesn’t help the rest of the year.  So I’ll seek out another shade in my next order. 

While it is a very good foundation, it is one that I know I need to wear not just with a primer but with a mattifying pore filling primer, like the Benefit Porefessional. I picked this up because I loved Ciate’s blush and powder and realized I never tried their foundations.  I have to say I am really glad I thought to pick this up. Hopefully the winter shade I pick will match me just as well. Finger’s crossed.


Molton Brown (US)