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.

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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.

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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.


My Current Skin Care Line Up

I know I talk a lot about different products, but I thought you might find it interesting to see the full regime as it stands now.  First off, I ought to say that I have a staggered rotation system for skin care. I like to have an older product I’ve been using for a while roll into my trial for a new product so that I’m not changing out every item at the same time. 

For example I am currently testing three Timeless Skin products (gifted to me by Timeless Skin for testing and review purposes for which I am extremely grateful).  The Hyaluronic Acid Serum I have been using for two weeks now (Labor day started week three so I will be reviewing it on the 21st after 30 days of use), while the while the Squalane Oil from Timeless skin is just starting its second week of use and the HA Spray is on its first full week of use.

The same can also be said for my Purlisse Blue Lotus 4-in-1 Cleansing Milk.  I used it for a month but will use it a little bit longer since I just started with the HA spray. I’ll use the same cleanser while I figure out how everything reacts and then I’ll start a new cleanser trial.  I generally find that staggering new products keeps my skin from freaking out with the new so I get a more accurate opinion about how things work.

Now I do have one disclaimer, my skin care routine is slightly jumbled a bit because I am trying to get in several workouts  and don’t want to just sweat off my products, so I’ll try to put those in here as well.

current cleanser

In the mornings, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, I am trying to get in about twenty minutes of strength and flexibility training.  This is mostly with youtube videos, wii fit and yoga.  It is done in doors and because I have the tendency to talk myself out of it, I find it is easier to start with the workout before I’m fully awake.  So on those mornings I splash water on my face to rinse off the remnants of my night cream, towel off and after dressing, do my planned work out.

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After I turn on the coffee pot and cool down a bit, I start in on my morning skin care. I start by washing my face, currently with the Purlisse Blue Lotus 4-in-1 Cleansing milk. 

Toner

I then use a toner.  I just finished the Akar Balancing Toning Mist and am now trying the Pixi Skin Treats Clarity Tonic.  Typically with Pixi I tend to go for their exfoliating toners so this was a new one for me.  While early in my use thus far I have been liking it.

serum

After toning I use a serum on my face, neck and decollete.  Currently, the serum I am trying out is the Timeless Hyaluronic Acid Serum.  And I did remember to take before pictures this time so I will have before and after photos from 30 days of use. 

I’ve actually noticed a positive change actually, but I will get into details with the full review.  At the moment I can say that I really like this serum and am turning into a pretty big fan of Hyaluronic Acid in skincare.

After I apply the serum, I brush my teeth while it takes it’s time settling in.  While this serum sinks in fast, I really like to give it a little extra time to settle in before I move on. You can probably see it in the background of the above photo but I am a big fan of the Aquafresh Extreme Clean toothpaste.  It has been my go-to for years.  I like the taste better than I like the regular aqua fresh.  Although sometimes the foaming can be a bit much.  But it is a good toothpaste.

eyecream

Then once I have wiped up all of the toothpaste fall out, I apply my eye cream.  Currently I am using the Glossy box Skin Care Eye Boost Cream (I’ve almost finished my month of use so a review will be coming soon).  With eye cream I not only use it around my eyes, but on the fine lines around my lips. 

The same formulation that helps eye cream work on the delicate tissue around the eyes also helps it on the fine lines around the lips. It was one of my grandmother’s favorite tricks and one I use increasingly as I get older.  In its own way that skin is just as delicate as the eyes and a little extra help in fighting those lines doesn’t hurt.

Squalane Oil

After the eye cream I use the oil.  At the moment I am using the Timeless 100% Squalane oil.  Oddly enough, I am finding that I can use it both morning and night unlike many other oils which I have only been able to use at night.  I think it’s because squalane’s main purpose is to simply lock in moisture and it really is just one type of oil (it’s also a really affordable oil as these things go). I’ve just started using it so I’ll have to see how it works moving forward.  Right now I am really enjoying it.  I use three drops and apply it to my skin and then follow with my moisturizer. I like applying the oil first rather than blending it in with the moisturizer. No real reason, it is just what I prefer.

moisturizer

The moisturizer I am currently using is the Dior Dream Skin Capture Totale. It was sent to me by Influenster and comes in a refillable container.  I can already tell you I am going to want to get a refill.

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At the moment it is running about even in my moisturizer preferences with the Peter Thomas Roth Hungarian Thermal Water Mineral Rich Moisturizer and the Volition Celery Green Cream. 

Those three may be my top three moisturizers of 2020 at this point.  Still the year is not over.

sunscreen

Speaking of Volition, after I apply the moisturizer I top it off with my Volition Prismatic Luminizing shield with SPF 50. I keep trying other sunscreens and I keep going back to this one.

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You will notice there is a second sunscreen in the picture however.  This is the Polaar Fluide Solaire also with SPF 50. While it is a good sunscreen, I don’t like it on my face.  It feels just a little too heavy.  It is perfect for my neck and upper chest where v-neck t-shirts expose the skin and I have really been enjoying using it there to give my skin some extra protection. 

lip masks, the maple day cream is in the tube and the night mask is in the jar.

I then add my Bite Beauty Agave Lip mask in the scent Maple to my lips.  It really does smell like maple syrup.  And it tasks kind of like it too.  I generally find that not only does it keep my lips wonderfully soft but the scent makes me feel like I’ve already indulged in some delectable treat and thus makes it less likely that I will feel like snacking.  I sort of feel Like I’ve already snacked.

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And skin care done I sit at my desk and get a few hours of work done.  I don’t put makeup on at this point as my meetings tend to be in the afternoon and I still have my daily walk to get through.  All my skin care has a couple of hours to soak in though. 

Then I take my walk.  Before I leave the house I spray myself all over with a spray sunblock.  I’m partial to one from Neutrogena. Even with the sunblock underneath, I like to be extra careful, especially after my bad burn earlier in the spring.

In general I sweat profusely during my walks.  Which is fine.  I like to think of the seat as encouraging my weight loss.  However I am a mess when I return.  While I often employ the Busy Beauty Showerless wipes to get me through until I can take my evening shower, and have various ways of dealing with my hair, my face is a different matter. 

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If I don’t wash my face after my walk I am just going to feel gross the rest of the day.  But I don’t want to strip my skin.  So I tend to use a gentle cleanser that will just wash away the sweat (and sometimes pollen) residue from my walk in the park/walking trail. 

Post work out cleanser

The cleanser I have consistently used for a while has been the Olay Cleanse Gentle Foaming Cleanser.  It is an excellent oil free, no frills cleanser that just makes my skin feel less gunky after a good sweat. 

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To be honest I have been using this as my post workout cleanser since I started my weight loss journey.  I have lost track of how many times I have used up and replaced this bottle. It is also the cleanser I grab when another cleanser is giving me problems because I know it is effective and reliable. So I use it after my walks.

post workout serum

Something new I am trying, because it came to me in an IPSY box, is the 111Skin Cryo ATP Sports Booster.  It is a serum you are supposed to use after a workout.  So because I wanted to see how it worked, I have started adding it to my skin after my quick wash with the Olay.  Previously I just did the quick wash and then moved into my makeup.

After the 111Skin has had a few minutes to settle in, I apply my makeup for the day.  While I usually end with a setting spray, the HA Spray with Matrixyl 3000 sent to me by Timeless claims to be able to be used as a setting spray as well as being skin care, so this week I started using it to set my makeup.  There will be more on that later this week.  But I will tell you now that is it wonderfully refreshing and smells like cucumbers.

skin care based setting spray

And then I go about my day.

At the end of the day I use a cleansing balm or oil to remove my makeup and then I use a cleanser like the Purlisse.  I just finished the Province Apothecary Moisturizing Cleansing oil and tonight I will start using the Kahina Giving Beauty Oil Cleanser.  It too came in a Petit Vour Box and I am looking forward to testing it out. 

upcoming cleansing oil/makeup remover

Often times I will remove my makeup after dinner and then use a mask of some sort while reading or watching television or you tube.  With my mask I will apply the Bite Beauty Agave Nighttime lip therapy mask to my lips.  It is more intense than the maple one I use in the mornings, although with less of a scent. 

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It also keeps me from snacking while watching television.  I know it is technically supposed to be left on over night, and sometimes I will re apply it just before I lay down but I find when I am watching movies or television with my babydoll in the evenings I am tempted to snack.  This really keeps me from snacking, even after the face mask is removed.

Eventually, I will migrate to the bedroom.  I do my night time skin care before I start to read in bed.  Once or twice a week I will use an exfoliator.  At the moment I am using the Avant Gentle Rose Beautifying Face Exfoliant.  It is an extremely gentle physical exfoliate but I don’t like to use them too often lest it damage the skin. 

exfoliation

After the exfoliate is rinsed off (on the nights I use it) I go back in with my toner, followed by serum, teeth brushing, eye cream, oil and moisturizer. Depending on the moisturizer I am using I will either use the same one I use during the day or a night cream.  The Dior is good for both day and night, but on a few days where I have been outside a bit longer, I replace my moisturizer with a night cream.  Currently I am trying out the Glow Recipe Avocado Melt Retinol Sleeping mask.  I only use it a couple of times a week.

Then I read in bed for an hour or two and go to sleep.

night cream

I know, that’s a lot of different steps to my skin care.  Personally, I enjoy the ritual of it and I really like taking the time to work on my skin.  At the moment, my skin is doing really well.  Most of my acne has faded. I still have a few clogged pores where my mask presses into my face, but really that is a combination of mask and sweat.  Some combination of elements in the last week has really been doing my skin well. 

This is another reason I like rotating products.  I can check in with my skin and see what I was using when things start to get better and I can monitor it as I stop using certain products and see where things change.  I helps me to figure out what is actually working and what is not.  It is also why I am not opposed to taking extra time in my routine.  To be honest, written out it looks like it takes a lot longer than it actually does.  It only really takes me about twenty minutes in the morning and then another twenty at night (not counting the mask) so it isn’t really as onerous as it looks on paper.

But there you have it.  Even though some of the products rotate out, the sequence and system remains more or less the same.  There are always changes based on products though.  Sometimes the oil I’m testing is one I only want to wear at night and so I skip it in the morning.  Sometimes I will try two different serums, one at night and one in the day because one reacts poorly to the sun. Sometimes my skin needs more or less exfoliation.  But in general, this is my daily skin care regime.