Favorites

I'm back!!! Current Makeup Favorites:

“Sometimes the greatest miracle is being able to face exactly where you’re at and say: This is where I am. No running, no hiding. There’s gold for me here and I intend to find it, no matter what.”

Hello my loves!!! It has been a while. After taking an entire year off from blogging, and honestly thinking I wouldn’t come back… I’ve realized how much I missed it. I wanted to apologize for my absence to those of you who genuinely loved this blog.

I’ve done a lot of soul searching.

A lot has changed in my life. And I realized just how much I was doing certain things because other people thought I should be doing them rather than because I genuinely wanted to. If any of you have found yourself in a similar place you know that simply ends up with you being miserable.

Creating a life the way YOU dream & envision it is so very important.

Fast forward to now ↬ I am in a much better place mentally. My business has grown, my relationship is incredible, and my family and I are healthy. Not much more you can ask for, right? I am focused once again and excited to be back to reviewing products - back to my roots. I’ve missed you all and thank you to those of you who stay in contact with me via my Instagram. You guys are truly the best.

So enough rambling! Here are a couple of my current favorite makeup products. Short but sweet; I haven’t been able to put these down!!


January 2019 Current Makeup Favorites.JPG
 
MAC Studio Fix Powder NC15 & Real Techniques Brush Crush 301.JPG

Call it a quarter-life crisis, I’ve barely worn makeup for the past couple months. I fell out of love with makeup for a while there.

Although this product is not new, I fell in love with MAC’s Studio Fix pressed powder (Shade NC15). I love applying it with my Real Techniques Brush Crush brush (say that 5 times fast) 301 - it’s a flat, dense brush and I either buff the powder in for a lighter coverage or dab/press it on for maximum coverage.

This powder is intense. It can become a full coverage powder real quick. But I love how versatile it is! I have been wearing this - and only this - as my base (and concealer) for the past month or so. It’s easy. When I’m lazy, I slap this on and it covers what I need it to cover but I can keep it lightweight in other areas that don’t need the coverage.

I’d recommend a primer underneath, either a mattifying/oil control or a hydrating primer depending on your skin type to help with longevity. I definitely wouldn’t wear this for a full 12 hour day, it breaks down too much on my skin. But for most days, this does the trick.


theBalm Take Home The Bronze in Oskar.JPG

theBalm’s Take Home the Bronze bronzer in Oskar…. As you can see, he’s very loved, and dirty. I’m so close to hitting pan!

** These bronzers have been renamed! This shade is now Oliver **

I’m pretty pale. So it’s hard for me to find bronzers that aren’t too orange or dark. This one is perfect. It contours and bronzes, not too warm and not too cool. I try to use others in my collection and always, always end up adding some of this over top because nothing compares! It blends beautifully, builds up well and lasts all day.

Merlot makeup look.jpg

In this photo, I am wearing theBalm’s bronzer as well as one of the blushes that I’ll talk about next!


bareMinerals Gen Nude blush - You Had Me At Merlot & That Peach Tho swatches.JPG

bareMinerals Gen Nude blushes in That Peach Tho and You Had Me At Merlot.

I love these blushes. I found them at TJMaxx, girrrrrl!!! That was a good shopping day!

I can’t say enough about these. They are gorgeous, pigmented, sooo creamy and blendable, they last all day. They are just so good. The Merlot shade is the blush I am wearing in the photo above. It’s definitely made for much darker skin tones than I have, and I have to use the lightest hand ever, but it was such a pretty shade! I couldn’t pass it up.

I’ll be picking up more shades, that is for sure.


Buxom Holographic Full-On Plumping Lip Gloss in Savannah swatch.JPG

I love Buxom’s glosses. I’ve said this countless of times but they are truly my favorite. This shade is impossible to photograph and I wish I could post a little boomerang video here to show you just how multidimensional this shade truly is… But you’ll just have to take my word for it. Buxom’s Holographic Full-On Lip Polish in Savannah is my absolute favorite lip topper ever right now. It is holographic, without a doubt. It shifts from the shade above to a gorgeous pink that I could not get to photograph for the life of me. It leaves the lips looking so juicy.

If you are unfamiliar with Buxom’s glosses, they do have a “plumping” formula that feels very cooling on the lips that some people may dislike but I enjoy (my boyfriend hates it lol) and it does have a slight scent. I definitely haven’t ever noticed plumping from any of Buxom’s products but I love them nonetheless. They just make good lippies. That’s all I can say!


That’s it for my current favorites! I hope you guys enjoyed and I hope that you’re as excited as I am that the blog is officially back!!! Please leave your favorites down in the comments below and leave any post recommendations that you’d like to see as well!

Love you all to the moon and back! xoxo.


Some of these products were sent to me by the company in PR. I am not being paid to talk about any of these products. Some links are affiliate links.

July Beauty Favorites - 2017:

 

"If the world is cold, make it your business to build fires."

- Horace Traubel

 

 

 

Hello darlings!

Here are my July beauty favorites! These are the makeup and skincare products I have been loving lately.

 

I struggled a lot with my skin the past few months so I didn't wear makeup as much as I usually do; I've found a few skincare products that saved my skin so let's talk about those first:

 

Drunk Elephant is a brand that I've quickly fallen in love with these past few months. They pride themselves on minimal, non-toxic ingredients and are said to be safe for even the most sensitive of skin. Their bright packaging is what first caught my eye when I found them in Sephora and their story is what made me try them. I'm so glad I did because I've been loving quite a few of their products! They are pricey so I'm slowly adding to my collection.

The C-Firma Day Serum ($80) is a Vitamin C serum made to brighten and firm as well as help with signs of photoaging. I tried this because I'm starting to see more and more sun damage pop up on my skin and I'd like to fade those spots as much as possible! This is a light-weight serum that absorbs quickly into the skin. It does have a funny little smell (not chemically) but that doesn't bother me much. It goes away once you've massaged it into the skin.

Although I haven't been using this long enough to say that I've seen amazing changes or anything... I've been enjoying it! I will update you guys as I continue using it.


Next up are two products from Dr. Jart. These were sent to me by the company (for PR unboxings follow my snapchat: @themakeupaffair) and they must have gotten the Bat Signal letting them know I needed them because I was recovering from yet another allergic reaction when these arrived and within two days, my skin was no longer dry, flaky and irritated! I was instantly hooked.

I am in NO WAY shape or form being paid to say that! I truly mean it.

Dr Jart Ultimate Hydro Gel review

Ultimate Hydro Gel ($39) is a gel moisturizer that is said to brighten and deliver long-lasting moisture. I can't agree with this more! I layered this on the areas that I had flaking, dry skin and let it just sit and soak in... As soon as it did soak in, I added another layer. This made such a huge difference! It's the only moisturizer right now that is helping calm that irritation down. Thank Goodness!

Dr Jart favorites

It has a seal to help keep the product contained as well as a little spatula so you don't have to stick your fingers in the product. It helps to keep it sanitary!

Dr Jart Ultimate Hydro Gel

You can probably tell that I've already put quite a dent in this! It's a gel based moisturizer so a little bit goes a long way and it absorbs quickly into the skin.

My other favorite from Dr Jart is the eye gel that is also part of this Hydro Gel line:

Dr Jart Hydro Soothe Eye Gel review

The Hydro Soothe eye gel ($42) became a quick favorite because of that gel formula! I'm very prone to milia on my eyes and cheeks and this is one of the only eye creams I've been able to use that doesn't cause them!

Hallelujah!!!

Dr Jart Hydro Soothe Eye gel

This also absorbs really quickly! If you have super dry under-eyes, this may not be enough moisture for you as it is super lightweight and not one of those thicker, more emollient eye creams you may be used to.


On to the makeup! :)

 

Benefit Brow product favorites

Benefit's brow products..... HOW have I never tried these before?!? I am obsessed!!! I will forever grab these before Anastasia's brow products from now on. They are that good. I'm trying out a few of their other brow products as well but these four are my current obsessions.

3D Browtones ($24) - This is an interesting product. It's a brow gel but it is meant to highlight areas of your brows. You want to pick up the shade that is slightly lighter than your brows and it will soften the look of darker brows or enhance lighter brows by adding dimension. I've been loving using this in the inner portion of my brows to keep that feathery, lighter look and to keep the inner portion from looking too harsh.

Ka-Brow ($24) - If you've ever used Anastasia's Dip Brow, this is pretty much Benefit's version of that... But in my opinion, it's better and easier to use. They describe it as a cream-gel and I think that's a perfect description. That stem coming out from the top of the jar is a small angled brush, I don't use it but it's actually pretty good quality! If you'd tried Dip Brow and struggled with it or completely hated it, try this! It's SO easy to use.

Gimme Brow ($24) - This has been a staple in my routine for years. It is a brow gel with microfibers that helps to add not only color to your brows but the fibers fill in sparser areas. It's just perfection. I love to use this on full-glam days all the way to no-makeup days. This helps to add texture back to your brows after filling them in. And on days when I wear no makeup, I like to throw this on to quickly fill my brows in without them looking too made up!

Precisely, My Brow Pencil ($24) - This is your Brow Wiz dupe! Dual ended, product on one side and spoolie on the other. This formula is incredible! It's not too dry, not too creamy. It lasts all day! It's the perfect brow pencil.


Next up are a few products from bareMinerals. I will start by saying that I haven't had the best experience with their products. Most were fails for me in the past but these are some new products they've recently released and oh my goodness, I am in love! These are phenomenal!!

bareMinerals Combo Control Primer review.JPG

bareMinerals Combo Control Primer ($26) - I haven't been able to find a primer I've loved in a while. I've been testing out a few and they've just been okay. So when I first tried this, I wasn't expecting much... After trying for the past few weeks, I love it!! I tried it with foundations that have been breaking down quickly on me and I've seen a huge difference in how long they wear now. It controls my oils but doesn't accentuate dry patches like some combo primers have done to me in the past. It's a milky formula but feels almost like a moisturizer once you apply it and it absorbs really quickly.

bareMinerals Bare Pro Full Coverage Foundation review

Barepro Liquid Foundation ($34) - This foundation.... Man, was this a pleasant surprise. I absolutely hated the Pure Brightening Serum foundation so I was nervous to try this... But I love it! There are 30 shades available with varying undertones (THANK YOU BAREMINERALS!!!!). These two shades are Dawn and Champagne, both yellow undertones. I mix both for a perfect match because I am almost never one shade!

The claims:

  • Full coverage
  • Papaya Enzymes improves the appearance of skin texture over time.
  • 24-hour breathable coverage
  • MineralLock Technology that blends mineral pigments with natural lipids in the skin to lock in transfer-resistant coverage
  • Bamboo Stem extract for naturally matte, soft focus finish
  • Heat, humidity, water and sweat resistant
  • SPF 20

This foundation reminds me of MAC Pro Longwear concealer... If you're familiar with the texture of that concealer, it's super similar to this. It's full coverage, apply a very light layer to start with because it's very easy to go overboard and turn into a total cake face! The finish is matte but I can see why they say it has a soft focus finish because it's not totally flat. I will be testing it more to see if it transfers or not but so far, I'm loving it! It wears all day so I've been choosing this one for work quite often.

bareMinerals Barepro foundation

It comes with a pump that locks; awwwww yeah!!!!

 

bareMinerals Contour Palette review

Barepro Contour Face-Shaping Powder Trio ($34) - Another product I was pleasantly surprised by! These powders are super creamy and blendable. I've not only been using them to contour but I've also loved using them as eyeshadows!

bareMinerals Contour Palette Tan to Dark

This is the Tan to Dark palette. For contouring, I can pretty much only use the darkest shade. The middle one is too orange for my skin tone and the highlight shade is too dark so those two I use for eyeshadows.

bareminerals powder shaping trio review

These are so easily blendable! I'll be picking up the lighter palette next.


Those are my favorites from July! Let us know your current favorites in the comments below!!

 

xoxo.

 

 

FTC: Some of these products were sent to me by the company. All opinions are my own.

Current Favorites - March 2017:

 

"In life you will realize there is a role for everyone you meet. Some will test you, some will use you, some will love you and some will teach you. But the ones who are truly important are the ones who bring out the best in you. They are the rare amazing people who remind you why it's worth it."

 

 

Hey guys! How long has it been since I've done a favorites post?! Forever, it feels like. And surprisingly, I don't have a ton of products to share.

As many of you who follow my Instagram know, I've begun on the path of starting my own business and that has taken up much of my time - and money... So the makeup splurges are quite few and far between as of late. But these products are ones that I've been really loving so I wanted to share them!

If you are interested in more info on what exactly my business is, I plan to write a blog post all about it soon but in short, I will be back to taking clients! I'm renting a room in a salon and will be doing makeup, eyelash extensions and a bit of waxing. I will put a post up with photos as soon as I get the room 100% finished!

On to the favorites!

If you follow my Instagram, you know that I've been quite into bright eyeshadows lately... So of course it's fitting that I mention Sugarpill. They are the powerhouse of BRIGHT eyeshadows!

The swatches from left to right: Buttercupcake, Love +, Flamepoint, Acidberry, Poison Plum, Dollipop, Kitten Parade, and Candycrush.

 

I wanted to post a close-up of the two shimmer shades because I feel like the crazy bright mattes are what Sugarpill is known for... And the metallics don't get as much love as they probably should. They are SO FREAKING PRETTY! Kitten Parade is absolutely incredible as a lid shade.

I couldn't say enough about Sugarpill's eyeshadows. The pans are huge, they are crazy pigmented and bright. They blend easily, which can be difficult to find in such bright colors. They are just perfect.

Head over to my Instagram to see my latest posts using these eyeshadows!


Next up is Maybelline's Better Skin pressed powder. I've seen a bunch of positive reviews about it so after shattering yet another Rimmel Stay Matte powder (does that happen to anyone else? EVERY SINGLE ONE!)... I thought it was about time to try a new brand.

The mirror is HUGE! I also like that they include a sponge versus a powder puff.... I never use it but hey, it's nice to have just in case.

I can't even really tell you why I love this powder.... It just works. Nicely. My skin looks more flawless after I use this. And who doesn't want that?! It lasts pretty well over foundation. I do need to touch up at my usual times so I can't say that it holds oils any longer than typical but it's a beautiful powder!

I use the shade 10 - Porcelain.


MAC Pro Longwear Concealer..... I won't talk about this much because it's been a favorite of mine for many years but I purchased a new one a month or so ago and fell right back in love with it.

Tarte's Shape Tape is phenomenal and I wanted to include that one as well but I find it very drying under my eyes.... And MAC's concealer has the closest amount of pigmentation but is a bit more hydrating so I've actually been grabbing for it more than my Tarte concealer!

I use the shade NC15.

... It's just one of those oldie but goodies that I will forever love.


Next up is.... Soap brows!!!! Have you tried this yet?!

There are tons of videos using this technique now but I will link the originator - Pixiwoo!

Essentially, you are wetting your spoolie with either water or fix plus and working some soap into the brush and then combing through your brows. Whether before applying product or after, it works both ways. I also love using this on days when I'm not wearing any makeup to get my brows in the shape that I want them. They stay put all day and I love using soap more so than any brow gel!

I know it sounds weird, but give it a try! The soap I use is from Amazon - the trick is finding a soap that is totally clear and doesn't leave a film over your brows. These from Amazon don't and they come in a three pack.


Anastasia's Liquid Lipsticks..... Another favorite I've mentioned before but I just can't get enough of them. I literally want to own every single shade. They are one of my favorite formulas. And I know that liquid lip formulas are so individualized and everyone has preferences but these are wonderful, in my opinion.

They are super pigmented, they don't dry my lips out too much or feel uncomfortable. They wear remarkably well and.... I just love them!

From left to right: Pure Hollywood, Naked, Catnip, Vamp and Requiem.


A little bonus random favorite... My Erin Condren Life Planner. I know... I know. I didn't ever want to get on the planner bandwagon but this planner is so freaking good. It's perfect for what I need!

I will include my referral link here - you will get $10 off your purchase. These are pricey planners but she ALWAYS has deals and coupons so don't ever pay full price! If you'd like a post more dedicated to planning, let me know in the comments below!

I didn't think I would enjoy using a planner this much but my memory is terrible and it has helped me to remember things so much better! The physical act of taking the time to write things down is definitely a game changer for me.


So those are my current favorites! What are some things you are loving?! Let us know in the comments below!

 

xoxo.

Melt Cosmetics - Dark Matter & Rust Eyeshadow Stacks:

 

"Just don't give up on me, on people, on yourself. I know people fill your holes with disappointments, but there's so much hope left to go around. Please do not throw yourself to the wild and let the wolves hunt you down. You were born a creature to be feared, to be valued, to be loved; not to be thrown away as if your parents raised you to be disposable. Trust me, you weren't brought to this planet to leave empty handed. You were meant to touch, to love, and to fight; to bring walls down, to repair your armor, and build your own castle. Life didn't teach you how to survive just so you can give up when it gets a little harder."

- Ming D. Liu, Stories I'll tell one day #81

 

Hello my darlings! Today's review is very exciting for me. Melt Cosmetics has been a brand that I've swooned over for a while now but never let myself splurge... After hearing one of my students (Hey Carla!!!) rave about the Dark Matter stack, I knew I had to get it. I've had it for months now and when they released the Rust stack, it was over. Another hole in my heart until I had it in my hands. These palettes - color wise - are so ME! Saying that I love warm, rusty tones would be an understatement. So I figured I'd include both in this review! Grab a drink and snack because it's going to be a long one!! I hope you all enjoy :)


For those of you unfamiliar with Melt Cosmetics, these eyeshadow palettes are magnetic circles that stack together. I absolutely love the packaging and find it so fun and creative. They don't take up a lot of room and easily fit in my vanity drawers so I appreciate that so much.

Another huge plus is that the eyeshadow pans are HUGE! With the Dark Matter stack, you get 3.57g of product total and Rust, 2.96 g... It bums me out a bit that you get less in one but I'm assuming it's because you are getting an extra eyeshadow in the Rust Stack.

 

Let's start with Dark Matter first:

My reviews on this stack are a bit mixed. You will see the swatch differences between this stack and the Rust shadows... I found that these eyeshadows were more on the dry side. Enigma (the red shade) more than all of the others. With that being said, I still very much love these shadows and find that they are very pigmented and blendable.

This stack comes with 4 eyeshadows - all matte - and retails for $48:

 

 

Blurr is the first and lightest shade. It's the perfect transition shade. Think - Makeup Geek's Peach Smoothie - it's very similar to that! 

 


 

Unseen is the second and is sort of like a step deeper and warmer than Blurr. Unseen is an amazing shade for the crease. I love using this to warm up any eyeshadow looks while bringing a little bit of depth.

 


Enigma is the next shade and the one that I was the most excited about in this stack. As I've said it feels very dry to the touch and doesn't give that smooth, creamy feel that many loved eyeshadows do. I'm not sure if I just got an off formula or if they are all dry like this - if you own it, please leave a comment below and let me know how yours is! But I still really love this eyeshadow. It takes some building up for full pigment but overall, it's gorgeous.


 

The last eyeshadow is Dark Matter, a deep black. It's also a little dry but beautiful and very pigmented.

 

 


You'll see a big difference between these swatches and the Rust stack. I think the dryness comes through on these swatches. They are good but I do wish they were smooth and creamier.

 

Alright, the star of the show is the Rust Stack. Truly. This became my favorite eyeshadow palette within the first use. It is absolute perfection. From shades to formula, pigmentation to blend-ability. It. Is. Perfect!!!!

This stack comes with 5 eyeshadows - all matte - and retails for $58.

The first eyeshadow is Classic. A warm-ish yellow. I love using this as a base, to set my eyeshadow primer/base, and as a highlight shade. I usually prefer shimmer highlight shades for my inner corner and brow bone, even for the lid, but this gives a subtle highlight and it's really nice.

 


 

 

Next is Antique, a beautiful peach. Amazing for a transition shade!!! 

 


 

Rubbish... This shade may scare some, it's a mustardy brown. I'm obsessed! It reminds me so much of Bobbi Brown's Camel, another one of my favorites. I love those weird yellow/brown/dirty-ish looking eyeshadows! 

 


Rust is the next shade and when I first got this, I thought that Rubbish would be my favorite but the second I applied this to my eyes... I think I squealed out loud. If you guys had seen me apply this stack for the first time you would have either thought I was hilarious or crazy.... Maybe both... It's warm and buttery, it blends like a DREAM. I have no words for how beautiful this shade is!!! 


 

The last shade is Rott, a deep brown. It doesn't look like much in the pan but it totally completes this stack! Pigmentation is insane and it also blends super easily.

 

 


These eyeshadows are amazing. This is what I was expecting from a Melt Cosmetics stack. Buttery, creamy, pigmented and honestly, this stack made blending easy. You always hear people say that about eyeshadows but this is truly the first eyeshadows that I can say that with. Obsessed isn't a strong enough word for how I feel about this palette. I love it so much.

 

I love both of these palettes. It easy to see which is my favorite out of the two but I plan to purchase every other Melt stack, that's for sure. 

Here are a few makeup looks I've done using Dark Matter and Rust:

 

 

Dark Matter


Rust

 

I hope you all found this review helpful! Have you tried any products from Melt? Let us know in the comments below! What are your favorites? Any hate-its?!

xoxo.