5 Brands that Excite Me + Some that Don’t

5 Brands that Excite Me + Some that Don’t

Hey Everyone and Happy Monday!!

I was inspired to create this post after watching my favorite YouTuber, Emily Noel, create a video on this topic. It really got me thinking about not only my favorite products from the brand, but also just how excited I’ve been getting over their new releases.

These aren’t necessarily my very favorite brands of all time, but they’ve definitely had my attention the most lately. Oddly enough, most of the brands in my list are drugstore! I definitely feel like the more affordable brands have really upped the quality of their products over the last few years. I’ve really come to appreciate how great it is to diversify my makeup collection with more affordable items, rather than splurging on one or two high-end products. (Don’t get me wrong, Hourglass, Marc Jacobs, and LM still have my heart!)

This post will be a relatively broad overview of brands/products, but I am happy to do a more thorough review on anything y’all would like to see more of! Just let me know! All products mentioned are linked in each brand description. 

I’d like to add that the brands that DO NOT excite me are not inherently “bad” quality or poor in performance. They just disinterest at the moment due to over-production of new products or other various reasons I’ll get into later. This is not intended to bash any one brand or create negativity.


First, I’ll discuss the brands that are MOST EXCITING at the moment and mention the products that I love the most


Revolution Beauty

 

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My GOODNESS has this brand been absolutely blowing me away lately. The quality of the products I’ve tried out from them have been crazy good and they have an ultra-affordable price tag to match. Lately, I feel that they’ve really come out with unique products that grab my attention to want to try out. All the eyeshadow palettes I’ve picked up have provided really interesting color variations that I didn’t have in my collection previously.  You never feel like you’re walking away with a boring, over-produced range of colors.

Most importantly, I think Revolution has been a leader in inclusivity of all ages, skin tones, genders, etc.. They have AMAZING shade ranges for complexion products to meet the needs of their consumers. It just makes my heart happy to find a line of products that can be loved by all.

In my opinion, that’s the real beauty of the beauty industry.

LOOK at the gorgeousness in their Visionary Palette I recently picked up for only $7.00!

The set of colors just inspires me. PERFECTION.

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I’ve also recently talked about how good their Fast Base Foundation and Bake and Blot Powders are in previous posts, so I won’t harp on it again. If you missed those reviews, you can find them HERE and HERE. Just shockingly high-performing.

I know I haven’t really scratched the surface of all the different things RB has, but I can’t wait to try more. SERIOUSLY SO, SO GOOD! 

Send me your recommendations on what to pick up next!


bareMinerals 

 

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This is another brand that has been absolutely killing it with new releases lately. I feel that this brand is definitely WAY underrated. I hope the brand continues to grow and gain the respect it deserves.

BM has consistently prided themselves on creating “clean beauty” products, even before it was trendy. In my mind, this brand really set the standard of what should and shouldn’t be in your cosmetics. I also think they have some of the best price points compared to other high-end brands. I’m also really interested in trying out something from their new skincare line.

I’m making a bold statement with this, but their lipsticks are my absolute favorite among all other high-end/prestige options. Their Gen Nude line of matte liquid and radiant lippies released a few years ago was (and still is) a complete game changer for me. If I’m wearing a liquid lipstick these days, there’s about a 95% chance its a bareMinerals one. I absolutely adore their formulas and they are top-notch in terms of comfort.

Favorite bareMinerals Matte Liquid Lip Shades:

  • Weekend
  • Swag
  • XYZ

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Favorite bareMinerals Radiant Lipstick Shades: 

  • Notorious
  • Honeybun

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I’ve obsessed over their new Hydrating Foundation Stick in a previous post HERE. It is a dry-skinned person’s dream come true and I love the unique gel-cream consistency it has.

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The newest BM discovery for me is their Gen Nude Eyeshadow Palettes . The quality is OUTSTANDING and the shadows are a buttery dream to work with! I also love how compact they are — these would be perfect little palettes to travel with. I have the Gen Nude Eyeshadow Palette in Neutral, and its been such an easy addition for beautiful everyday looks. I highly recommend you check this line out!

SO MUCH LOVE for you, bareMinerals!! 


Milani Cosmetics 

 

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I am absolutely loving SO many things from Milani at the moment! Everything they release is packaged beautifully in their signature gold color. It is truly one of those lines that visually pulls me in and makes me stop and look every time I run across it online or in stores.

Milani is my personal favorite affordable/drugstore brand for lip products and blush! They have SO many new items I have my eye on for purchase soon. They just have so many standout products that I consistently use in my collection and I just love them so freakin’ much.

Of course, my first Milani love is their baked blush in “Luminoso”. I swear this blush is universally stunning on everyone! It just holds a special place in my heart and immediately puts me in a good mood each time I apply it. I also LOVE their blush shade in “Berry Amore” — it’s what berry + bronzy dreams are made of!

 

I need their entire line of blushes in my life. If this photo doesn’t make your heart flutter, I don’t know what will!

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Image sourced from Milani Cosmetic’s Instagram Account

I have so many lip products from Milani that happen to be my very favorites! I’ve tried several different formulations in their line, and they are consistently so GOOD! Their Color Statement Line is fantastic and feels like a nourishing dream to wear. I’ve got the gorgeous shades Blushing Beauty and Plum Rose from this range so far!

I’ve also been a big fan of their Amore Matte Creams, I’ve repurchased the shade “Precious” several times! This is a super comfortable and pigmented cream texture and looks super hydrating on the lips. Their line of Keep It Full Lip Glosses is one of the best gloss formulas I’ve tried to date- the shade  “Luminoso” is stunning. They’ve also got a new Luminoso face palette with blush and highlights I’m dying to try!

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Image sourced from Milani Cosmetic’s Instagram Account

Here’s all the lippies I mentioned above swatched:

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Next, I plan to try out more of their face products and this eye-shadow palette! 

 

Milani, if you need a new full-time product tester — I’m your girl!! 


 

Wet n Wild

Wet n Wild is definitely a brand that can release some hits and misses. However, it’s really hard for me to complain about the “misses” because this brand is SO AFFORDABLE!

I really respect the fact that Wet n Wild wants all makeup lovers to have access to great products without breaking the bank. They always tend to release products that keep up with current makeup trends for a fraction of the price you’d pay for other brands. No matter what your budget is, they’ve got a great product to try out. I have specifically had a lot of luck with their face products!

A more recent purchase from Wet n Wild is their Photo Focus Primer Water in Cucumber. As a cucumber scent-fanatic, this product is the PERFECT mist to refresh and hydrate my skin. It’s just an instant pick-me-up and I love to use it in several different ways [more on that in a future post! 😉].

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I’ve been SO pleased with the foundations from Wet n Wild, and they so happen to be the most affordable ones on the market! Their Mega Cushion Foundation absolutely blew me away (I’m wearing it as I write this!). The Photo Focus Liquid Foundation could outperform a ton of prestige brands, and costs less than $5.00!

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**Image sourced from Wet n Wild’s Instagram

One of my absolute FAVORITE highlights in my entire collection is their Boozy Brunch Reflect Palette. It’s just golden-pink champagne perfection! For some reason, its a little tough to find so if you have the opportunity — pick this one up! I’ve also mentioned HERE how much I love their Brow Highlighter Stick to brighten the lower waterline and the arch of my eyebrow. It is a spot-on dupe for the Benefit High Brow Pencil!!

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Wet n Wild is just such a cool brand and there’s so many new things I’m super curious to pick up. I love the affordability of the products and the fact that they’ve always been dedicated to being Cruelty Free!

*ALSO: I’m in the process of testing one of their newest products that will be posted soon– stay tuned!


 

ELF Cosmetics

ELF is such an interesting brand to me. They’ve been coming out with cool products that have really intrigued me to want to try out more and more. Once gain, they have some misses in the line, but the hits are amazing ones!

I can remember years ago when ELF was that brand packaged in all black in white that I could only find in a small section at Target. It was crazy to me that pretty much everything cost around $1.00!

My first purchases from the brand were their makeup brushes. To this day, I use ELF brushes daily and they are some of my absolute favorite! Of course, now they have gained more popularity so the prices have gone up a little–but I’m so thankful that this brand puts out affordable makeup tools that work beautifully.

My HG Makeup Brushes from ELF: 

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ELF has also really stepped up their skincare game, and they have several new masks/serums that I’m dying to dry out! It just really excites me to see affordable brands create skincare that can work for any budget. I really LOVE their Illuminating Setting Spray Mist. It’s so awesome for the price and sets my makeup like a dream.

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I think ELF has the biggest variety of makeup primers to choose from, and they have one that can cater to all different skin types in SO many formulations (sticks, liquids, mists, and of course the infamous putty primer!)

I finally got my hands on the putty one, review coming soon! 

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I also picked up their Instant Lift Eyebrow Pencil, and I absolutely LOVE it. It works great and is just as easy to work with as the ABH Brow Definer for me, and it only costs $2.00 (this is over 10x cheaper than ABH for $23.00!)  

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Image Sourced from Elf Cosmetics’ Instagram account

As I mentioned, ELF is just one of my favorite brands to watch because they put out great products at such an affordable price. They also tend to run a ton of specials on their website, from % of entire purchases to free shipping! I’m really interested in trying out so many products from their Spring launches, the Beauty Shield Collection (photo below) is really calling to me.

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Image Sourced from Elf Cosmetics’ Instagram account

 

I can’t wait to see what you have up your sleeve next, ELF!    🙂



 

Now, for the brands that haven’t been holding my attention lately….

  • Tarte
    • I have several products from Tarte that I really love and enjoy. I respect them as a company and I think they’ve definitely made significant contributions to the beauty community. My main disinterest in their line comes from the seemingly constant output of new products that don’t always deliver the quality for the price you pay. There’s been a lot of products that receive so much hype and ultimately don’t work for me. Their most current releases just don’t interest me at the moment, but hopefully they’ll come out with a product I love and want to share!
  •  Urban Decay
    • Once again, I have an enormous amount of respect for UD as a brand and they have some fantastic products. Just personally for me, I don’t love their most recent new releases. I’m not a Game of Thrones fan (don’t hate me!), so I can’t get super excited over their GoT collection. I feel like many of their releases over the last few years just haven’t spoken to me in terms of the color palettes/tones chosen.
  • Kat Von D
    • I’ve never had a ton of products from KVD’s line, but I can say objectively her liquid eyeliner and liquid lips are good products. For personal decisions, I no longer choose to purchase her products or promote them on my site. We have differing ideologies on certain issues, so it is not a brand I can consciously support.

 


 

So now its y’all’s turn, please share your most/least exciting brands at the moment! If you feel like creating a whole post, tag me in it! I think it was a lot of fun to put some serious thought into what makes each brand special. As a makeup lover and consumer, I think it’s important to take a critical look at what different brands are bringing to the table.

Please share your thoughts! Also let me know of ANY product you’d like more information on –I’m happy to provide a thorough review! 

Thanks for Reading!

xo

Jena


 

 

FTC: This post is NOT sponsored and all products were purchased by myself. Opinions are honest and my own. Some links are affiliate. I really appreciate your support of my blog! 

*Some photos are from the Milani Cosmetics, Wet n Wild Cosmetics, and ELF Cosmetics’ Instagram Accounts

 

The MakeupDrop: Better than a Beauty Blender?

The MakeupDrop: Better than a Beauty Blender?

Hey y’all!

I am SO excited to chat about the newest beauty sponge I’ve tried out:

The MakeupDrop Hybrid! 

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I am a super-fan of using sponges for makeup application and I love putting them to the “test” to see how they perform. I use a sponge for it all— foundation, concealer, liquid blush/bronzer, applying setting powder, etc.. Each sponge I try seems to have its own unique pros/cons, and its interesting to see what new feature different brands come up with.

I think that many people would agree that the Beauty Blender set the stage for the hype of makeup sponges—it’s the “standard” for what all new releases are compared to. I have a pretty good collection of different brand’s products, and I must say the Beauty Blender is a special experience. It offers a softness and bouncy-ness that just hasn’t been identically replicated yet. I would have to imagine that because a Beauty Blender is the OG sponge on the block, they will never lower the price. Because I have found SO many affordable sponges that work really well for me, I haven’t bought a new BB in awhile. If I’m going to spend over $20 at Sephora, I’d rather pick up a new lip product or something that I can use more than a few months.

Don’t get it twisted though— I still love me a brand new, bright pink Beauty Blender (I just wish they were cheaper!)

***I’ll list pricing of each sponge mentioned below, but I think it is first important to know that the Beauty Blender and MakeupDrop Hybrid both retail for the same price —- $20 USD.


Naturally when I found this MakeupDrop Hybrid sponge/silicone thing, I HAD to order one and see how it stacked up to the competition.

The design of this sponge is unique– it is designed to be a 2-in-1 tool, with a silicone top and a sponge base for blending. The addition of the silicone is intended to avoid product loss that would otherwise be soaked into the sponge. The suggested use of the MakeupDrop is to apply the product (liquid or cream) directly to the silicone side and “dab or sculpt” the makeup into the skin. Finally, you use the sponge portion to blend your makeup in for an “airbrush finish.”

 

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*Notice the silicone part separates itself out of the sponge portion to minimize product loss. I must say, I love the overall design of the BeautyDrop. It’s a beautiful blue color that really POPS and the brand logo on the back is a really cool touch. 

 

Here’s a Comparison of the BB vs. MakeupDrop DRY 

*****I must apologize in advance— all of my sponges are clean but most have makeup stains I just can’t get out. So not lovely to showcase.

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As you can see here, the sponges are pretty similar in size/shape when dry. A big factor that sets the two apart, is the TEXTURE of the sponge. As I mentioned above, the BB is softer and more bouncy than the MakeupDrop both wet and dry. If you feel that the softness level is the most important factor in a sponge, the BB definitely wins.

Because the two sponges are the exact same price, my expectations were pretty high for the MakeupDrop. 

In my opinion, what really sets the two apart is that each sponge has unique pros/cons depending on your application method.  

 

PROS/CONS Each

  • MakeupDrop Hybrid
    • PROS:
      • I did feel it required much LESS product to build to the same coverage I would get with a BB. The product goes directly from the silicone to your face.
      • More precise application— because the MUDrop has more defined edges, you can really control the location/amount of product you want to add.
    • CONS:
      • The texture is less soft/bouncy than the BB
      • Concealer application is not ideal—the very defined/less spongy edges of the MUDrop made it more difficult to blend product near the inner conner of the eye.
  • Beauty Blender
    • PROS:
      • Soft, bouncy, and more comfortable to use.
      • Superior for blending out concealer
    • CONS:
      • Absorbs product easier, which results in product loss/waste.
      • Less precision in application.

 

Because I’m a nerd, here’s all of the other brand name sponges I have for further comparison: (Again, clean sponges with stubborn stains). I LOVE and recommend all the affordable sponges as well. They each have little unique details I enjoy. I thought the dark pink sponge on the far right was a L’Oreal sponge I love (and can’t find), but it is actually another Real Techniques!

Sponges are dampened here, and you can see that the bottom of the MakeupDrop definitely becomes more dense when wet. I should say that although it does swell up a good bit, the exterior material of the sponge gets extremely soft. Of all the sponges pictured below, the MUDrop definitely wins in terms of smoothest outer surface. 

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Here’s a more direct comparison of the BB/MUDrop when dampened: (Yes the MakeupDrop has a DROP of water….the irony isn’t lost on me ;-))

 


 

I think that the takeaway here is that each sponge has different qualities that make them great. I really appreciate the innovation that the MUDrop offers. To be competitive in today’s makeup market, you really have to bring something “new” to the table to keep consumers’ interests. I think this product is fun and definitely mixes up my normal makeup routine, I’ll keep experimenting with different formulas and products to see this sponge’s full range of use. If you want to spend $20 on a cool new makeup tool, I would say give this one a go!

Is this product a “DUPE” for the Beauty Blender, I would say no. But then again, I don’t feel like it’s trying to be! 😉

 

Shop ALL Sponges Discussed Here:


 

I’m dying to hear y’all’s thoughts on this!

Would you purchase the MakeupDrop Hybrid Sponge?? Also, share your favorite sponge(s) or other beauty tools below!! 

 

THANKS SO MUCH!!

xo,

Jena


 

 

 

 

 

FTC: This post is not sponsored and all products were purchased by myself. Thoughts and opinions are honest and my own. Some links are affiliate. Thank you for supporting my blog!

REVIEW: Drunk Elephant Slaai Makeup-Melting Butter Cleanser

REVIEW: Drunk Elephant Slaai Makeup-Melting Butter Cleanser

Hey everyone!

I came to chat about my latest impulse purchase from Drunk Elephant, The Slaai Makeup-Melting Butter Cleanser. I saw it on DE’s Instagram and knew I wouldn’t be able to pass this one up.

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I bought mine online for $34 USD from Sephora. (I am pretty sure the Drunk Elephant website ships to more international locations than Sephora)

I love a cleanser that takes off all my face/eye makeup easily, without having to do 1000 extra steps to clean up leftover product. Considering the claims and high quality Drunk Elephant always tends to have, I had pretty high expectations for this one.

Just a few quick specs on it:

  • Its a rich oil, balm formula that claims to melt all dirt, makeup, & sunscreen off (even water-resistant formulas)
  • DE recommends for normal, dry, combo, and oily skin types
  • A few key ingredients are non-fragranced fruit extracts (blueberry, kiwi, and strawberry) and fruit oils (cranberry seed oil, acai fruit oil, watermelon seed oil) for moisture
  • It also comes with a small tube of Bamboo Booster— a mix of bamboo and charcoal powder to help exfoliate away built-up dead, dry skin.
    • This is an optional step recommended to use 1-2x/week along with the balm. (Due to excess irritation, DE doesn’t really recommend using the booster with retinols. I’m on an RX retinol, so I decided to skip this step for now). 

*Here’s a photo of the Bamboo Booster that comes with the cleanser (not sure if they are planning on selling this separately or not?). It’s a small little 3gm sample tube.

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Suggested Use:

  • Apply to dry skin, and massage the product in with dry fingertips
  • Add water to activate, rinse with warm water, and pat dry OR remove with a soft, damp cloth

**I used this with a full face of makeup on as directed, and rinsed with warm water.

 

The first thing I immediately LOVED about this product was the packaging. I do really like several other balm cleansers that come in a jar, but contamination is always an issue if you dip into it with makeup-covered hands.  DE solved this problem brilliantly, by providing a little scoop that has a magnet to attach perfectly on top of the container. SO CLEVER!

Here’s a photo of the magnetic scoop that comes with the cleanser:

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Random Q: Am I the only one that LOVES how each product in the DE line has its own individual color? Just such a fun little detail I really appreciate! 💚💚

On my first use of this, I think I used about scoop and a half, which was probably a little too much. You really don’t need much product to cover your whole face with a thin layer. I love how you can just rinse it off with water—some products with this consistency require you to use some type of cloth to actually pull the product off your skin.

didn’t have any issues with burning or sensitivity in my eye area. It will cause a little bit of blurriness if it gets in your eyes; if you’re a contact lens wearer like me –you might want to remove your contacts before using this. The balm is also completely odorless, so you don’t have to worry about it being over-fragranced. 

When I washed it off, I was genuinely shocked at how SOFT my face felt right away. It did basically remove all makeup on my face, including mascara and eyeliner.  My skin felt super clean, but not stripped or that overly “tight” feeling. It truly felt like a cleanser/moisturizer all in one step. I didn’t feel the need to go in with another cleanser or micellar water, but I did use my favorite toner on a cotton round.


 

I’ve used this product about 3 or 4 times total, and so far I am so so happy with it. It just works SO well and truly melts everything off. I would compare the effectiveness to the Clinique Take the Day Off Balm, which I also love; but this one really provides a higher level of moisture and noticeable smoothness to my skin. Because the effects of this cleanser aren’t really “dewy” or radiant, I think this would work on all skin types. It just provides so much nourishment and softness.

I just LOVE this product so much. As of now, it’s a game changer for my skincare routine and really exceeded my expectations. I’ll definitely keep using it and update on any more long-term effects seen from it.

Drunk Elephant, I love you! UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_a72

 

Has anyone bought this or is planning on picking it up? Please tell me ALL your thoughts about it!!

Thanks so much,

Jena

 

 

 

FTC: This post is not sponsored and all products were purchased by me. Thoughts and opinions are honest and my own. Some links may be affiliate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WANDERLUST Eyeshadow Palette

WANDERLUST Eyeshadow Palette

Hey everyone!

I checked the mail today and found a literal rainbow waiting for me—the Wanderlust Palette by Profusion Cosmetics!

I couldn’t wait to get it unboxed and get behind the camera. I resisted my urge to swatch it right away, and managed to get a few photos.

For now, I’ll just share my first impressions and include photos of swatches. I will definitely spend a little time playing with it to provide a more thorough review. I was just too excited not to share! 🌈🌈

 

She is definitely a beauty!

This 21-pan palette is available at a very affordable price of $10.00 USD. It also comes with a brush that seems like it could be pretty promising.

I have to say, my eyes were immediately drawn to this section of the palette. Something about that green and brown! 💚

 

Now, let’s swatch!

First Row:

Shades are listed and shown in left to right. The first photo was taken with no flash, the second with flash.

Shades: 

  • Illusion
  • Tranquil
  • Chill
  • Serious
  • Frosting
  • Gravity
  • Love Story

If I’m being honest, the top row was pretty underwhelming. Many of the shades were gritty in texture and were pretty difficult to build up pigmentation. A number of shimmer shadows had more glitter than I usually like, so I would plan to experience some fall out and use a tacky primer before applying these. Despite a few disappointments, the shades “Chill” and “Love Story” did look more pretty in person and just didn’t photograph very well.

 

Second Row: 

Shades shown and listed from L to R:

  • Majesty
  • Hypnotic
  • Jade
  • Stormy
  • Splash
  • Regal
  • Nimbus

Photos of Second Row:  No Flash (top), With Flash (bottom)

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The second row is where the magic really starts to happen. I really love the green shades here and those blue shades are SUPER vibrant. It might take some courage to play with the brighter colors, but they are beautiful shades.

 

Third Row:

Shades Listed and Shown from L to R:

  • Coast
  • Statement
  • Nostalgia
  • Cruise
  • Enigma
  • Retro
  • Go Girl

Photos of third row: Top Photo (no flash) ,Bottom Photo (with flash)

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I really appreciate the different shades of brown in this row— its a good mix of warm and cooler-tones. This gives a great variety of transition shades for different skin tones and can correspond well with whatever look you want to achieve. It might be worth pointing out here that there’s no black shadow— I know many people like having that as an option for a more well-rounded palette. The blues in this row are bold and beautiful, the pigmentation for these are apparent right away and I love the shades chosen. Although they are bright, something about them seems a little bit more wearable than other blues I’ve seen in colorful palettes. I also love the unique jewel-toned hue that “Cruise” puts off. The “Go Girl” shade is probably my favorite color in the palette and gives me all the pink Barbie vibes!


Based on first impressions, I think this is palette is really pretty and I can’t wait to see it live in action. I will definitely put some time and effort into seeing how these shadows perform in application and provide details on my final thoughts. As mentioned earlier, it is a very affordable option for the quality and shade/texture variety. Most importantly, it inspires me to step out of my neutral box and play with some color!

**I purchased my palette HERE

So what are y’alls thoughts on this palette? Is anyone planning to purchase? If you already have it, I’m so curious to hear from you! Comment below!

Thanks for reading!

xo

Jena

 

 

FTC: This post is not sponsored and I purchased the products myself. Opinions are honest and my own. Some links are affiliate.

Some Single Eyeshadow Love

Some Single Eyeshadow Love

Hey Everyone!

I recently discovered the brand Sydney Grace from a few influencers on YouTube, Instagram, etc.. I was really impressed by the reviews and I love supporting smaller brands, so of course I had to see what all the fuss was about. Not fully knowing what to expect, I ordered 3 of the pressed pigment shadows.

SO. MUCH. BEAUTY.

I immediately started snapping photos. The delivery arrived super quick, and was thoughtfully packaged in a sweet little box. Then of course, I had to get to swatching!

The pressed pigment shadows come individually as 1.8g/0.064 oz of product and retail for $6.00 USD each.

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Initially, I was amazed by the smooth, buttery texture of the shadows. They swatched effortlessly and seem to glide right on my skin with an almost cream-like finish. So beautiful! The pigmentation is rich with great color payoff —the shades I have almost seem to morph into multiple tones in different types of lighting. So complex and duotone-y! It wasn’t easy narrowing down which ones to purchase, but finally I decided to buy the shades “Hot Stuff”, “Blushed”, and “Peace”

Swatches in natural sunlight:   Left to Right — “Hot Stuff”, “Blushed, “Peace”

Swatches in darker light with flash:

 

Individual Swatches:

Hot Stuff” —I especially love the unique olive/brown/red complexity of this one.

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“Blushing” — Rose-gold/light copper perfection.

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Peace” —A delicious purple/mauve taupe.

 

So far, I am absolutely in LOVE with these shadows and how great they perform. I think they are at a very affordable price point for the outstanding quality and pigmentation. I can’t wait to play with these a little more and create some fun looks!

As I mentioned, I love supporting lesser known brands, and I hope Sydney Grace gains more attention for all the fantastic products. If you haven’t yet, I highly recommend y’all check this company out and see what you think! They also have other product varieties -(cream shadows, loose glitter, matte shadows, blush, highlights, etc.), I definitely want to try out more!

Has anyone purchased anything from this brand yet? Please share your thoughts!

**Link to the Website Here: http://sydneygraceco.com/

 

xo,

Jena

FTC: This post is not sponsored. I purchased these products myself and all opinions are my own. There are no affiliate links.

Face atelier Ultra Foundation: A 2-Day Wear Test

Face atelier Ultra Foundation: A 2-Day Wear Test

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Hey y’all!

Lately I’ve been on a foundation kick. I’ve been searching my collection to rediscover old favorites and purchasing a few new ones to test out. Although I’ve seen an improvement in my acne, I am struggling with a few textured and dry areas on my cheeks and between my eyebrows. My lines on my forehead and around my eyes are more prominent than usual since I’m overdue for Botox (first world problem). All that being said, I need a foundation that addresses all of these “issues” and won’t cake or dry me out. I want to look in the mirror and still look like myself.

Cue: FACE atelier Ultra Foundation. I’ve heard about this foundation from a ton of glowing reviews on YouTube and it has had me curious for a while. It’s more of a pro makeup artists’ brand and is less known in mainstream beauty communities. You can definitely tell it is geared towards makeup professionals with the minimal packaging and availability to purchase all the shades for bulk pricing. I so appreciate the toned-down, sleek look of the packaging. You are paying for the QUALITY of the actual product, not the pretty plastic it comes in. FACE atelier is a cruelty-free, PETA approved Canadian brand and is exclusively sold on their website [linked below], QVC, and Amazon [check reviews to make sure product is authentic—I did purchase mine from Amazon with no quality issues and fast shipping].

A Few Things to Know……

  • This foundation is oil and fragrance-free, non-comedogenic, and claims to not require the use of a primer (it is silicon based).
  • It comes in 2 sizes; I purchased the smaller one– 0.68 oz. or 20mL for $36 USD that comes in a plastic bottle with a pump.
    • A really cool feature that the FACE atelier website offers is that you can purchase a sample size in any shade for only $1.00.
  • Comes in a range of 18 shades, with some of them being “adjusters”, where you can deepen/lighten or adjust the undertone of another shade.

***I think that this customization option will help most skin tones find a shade that works, the formula is also pretty forgiving and seems to adjust with your natural skin tone as you blend it in. I purchased the shade #5 sepia –“cool-medium skin tone with yellow undertones”. It is pretty spot on shade-wise for me, but I feel like going up/down a shade could work just as well.

One of the claims for this foundation is that it doesn’t require a primer. However, I always use some kind of primer and I had just received a new one from Sephora I was dying to test out. I started out with a full pump of the foundation and dotted it equally all over my face, then blended with a foundation brush. [Note: I think that a damp beauty sponge would work with this, but a brush will give more coverage using less product]. Once I got the first layer blended, (with minimal effort), I was seriously BLOWN away. It instantly looked like a second skin with an absolutely stunning natural finish. My deep-set lines weren’t emphasized and meshed with the foundation perfectly; the textured areas looked smoothed and blurred. I used another full pump to provide an additional layer of coverage. The overall effect for me is a solid medium coverage, with a very lightweight and breathable feel. I can’t emphasize enough how beautiful of a skin-like finish this foundation provides, y’all. The website describes the formula as flexible to your own skin, which is an absolute perfect description of it. It blended seamlessly with my bronzer/blush and looked like I was having an awesome skin day. It is probably most ideal for normal/dry skin, as it does give a natural glow. Oily skin might require the use of matte primer/powders and more maintenance touch-ups throughout the day.

***A few more details to note about my experience with this foundation: I wore it with a very hydrating primer that I was also trying out for the first time— the MILK MAKEUP Hydro Grip Primer. I can say that I would not recommend this combination of foundation + primer, I would reserve the primer for more matte, full coverage foundations. With the exception of my under eye concealer, I did not set my face with any powder or setting spray.

Here’s the Breakdown: 

I applied the foundation at 9 AM–took the pic at 9:30AM — it looked beautiful!

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By about 1 PM/1:30PM, I did notice that my face was getting shiny and my pores were more visible, but the foundation was intact and not broken up. Here is a pic about 2:30ish later that day, let the meltdown begin.  Woof!

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By 3:30PM (6.5 hours in), my face was way too shiny and I noticed the foundation broke up a little bit above my eyebrow and near parts of my hairline. I was genuinely horrified when I saw the amount of shine. EEEEK!!  I really, really think that the primer was the culprit of the excessive “dew” here. My husband said he thought I had on some type of gel face mask! 😂😂😂

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I did touch up at 3:30PM with a light dusting of Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder all over my face—this really eliminated the shine . Here is a photo after the touch up at 3:45PM. A little dry looking, but better!

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Finally, here is the last photo of the day, at about 8:45PM. This was almost 12-hours of total wear. It was expectedly more broken down and the shine is definitely back; However, It did hold up really well most of the day after my one touch-up. As mentioned before, I think I might have over-applied the primer or the 2 products simply don’t play very nice together.  Don’t mind my smeared eye-makeup– I’m having terrible allergies and issues with my contacts. There’s also flash here since the sun was gone for the day!

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On to Day 2……

I wanted to give this foundation another go to see if I could increase the staying power and avoid the literal meltdown again from the day before.  I knew I would have to change my application approach so I did a few things different this time:

        • I did NOT use the MILK Hydro-Grip Primer (it was in time-out for bad behavior—I will bring it out another day).
        • Instead, I used the Maybelline Facestudio Master Blur Stick in light/medium. I just applied this in my T-zone (still relatively new to this product but it has some very promising results so far).
        • I did not set my face with powder. However, I did use a setting spray—-I am absolutely LOVING the Wet N Wild Photofocus Cucumber Setting Spray. The sprayer is goooood.

I wore the Face atelier for a little over 8 hours on day 2. It wore significantly better with different primers—it didn’t get nearly as shiny throughout the day (just some shininess on the forehead as per usual). No touch ups were required, but I would not categorize this foundation as long-wearing—- not a deal breaker for me since it looks SO pretty most of the day and keeps my dryness at bay.

Here are 2 photos of me, one in natural sunlight and the other a little darker light. This was about 5 hours after initial application. (That hairstyle, though 🤣🤣)

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Lesson learned: Primers can make or break you, guys. (Sorry, another first world prob) 

Final Conclusions:

I really, really like this foundation and I’m very pleased with the effect it has on the overall look of my skin. I think it looks beautiful and natural and I’ll definitely continue to reach for it. It is SO wearable for day-to-day and would look amazing on skin of all ages—it is very nice to fine lines/wrinkles. If you are in the market for a new foundation to play with, pick this one up or try a sample from Face atelier’s website. (I also love supporting less-known, cruelty-free brands.) If you have tried this before or plan to, let me know. I’m so excited to hear your thoughts.

*P.S.—– Let me know if y’all would like a more thorough review of the MILK Hydro-Grip primer. It has some interesting ingredients and warrants some further testing…

If you’re curious, take a look at the MILK primer here: Sephora.com

Product Links:

Face atelier Ultra Foundation: https://amzn.to/2Fk2sgI   OR https://www.faceatelier.com/

Maybelline Master Blur Stick (I have light-medium shade): https://amzn.to/2FmaWnL

Wet N Wild Photofocus Setting Spray (Cucumber): https://amzn.to/2W


 

 

 

FTC: This post is not sponsored. Opinions are my own, honest reviews and experiences. Some links are affiliate links and product images are from Amazon.com