Friday, April 28, 2017

Elf Long Lasting Lustrous Shadow: Love it or Lose it?

I bought the shade toast, which is a warm yellow-gold color. I had hoped to use it on my lids as a center of the lid highlight to bring some shimmer and life to my eyes. But trying to use a brush with this product is impossible to get any color out of the pot, and even with your fingers the product is much more likely to stick to your fingers than it is to stick to anything else. I had absolutely no luck getting this color to give me any pay off on the lids. It reminds me of a poorly formulated version of the Loreal Infallible shadows, which I will likely replace this color with down the road. I will keep trying to see if I can get it to work because the color is beautiful, especially over my favorite eyeshadow Laura Mercier African Violet, which a review is coming soon on so stay tuned for that!

Back to Elf's Toast, its super soft and appears pigmented in the pot as well as on your finger when you go to swatch it, but it doesn't transfer to the lids over other shadow or on bare skin. I had a bit more luck smudging it onto the inner corner of the eye, but it has a ton of fallout and turned me into the glitter fairy for the entire day. I kept seeing little light reflections on my face when the glitter would fall out and it was all over my under eyes by the end of work. I feel like I have a more workable version of this shade in the elf 144 palette with all the rainbow colors in it. And, if I don't I can always pick up an Anistasia Beverly Hills single to match when I pick up Pink Champagne soon.

As creamy and gorgeous as this shadow appears at first, it seems very picky about how it applies and what it is applied over top of. I'll keep trying, but this has been a total flop so far.

Have fun in the sun, and Stay Beautiful!


Future me here! This is still something I'm struggling to use, but I have since had some luck in the past few months in figuring out how this product works and applies best. You have to pack it on your fingers by pressing kind of hard into the product because it is essentially a powder shadow with a creamy texture. I actually like it more now than I did, but it still turns me into a glitter fallout fairy mess by the end of the day. Probably not going to buy it again, but it's a fun little product when I use it here and there.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Completion of the Closet Declutter!

The results of my entire wardrobe declutter are actually quite amazing. In total, I've downsized my clothing and accessories by about one third of the original amount, being mindful of my size and shape as well as my age and what style of clothing I typically wear. This process forced me to be honest with myself about the things I own in regards to what I've worn and not worn, how often I've worn it, when the last time I remember wearing it, and whether I'll ever wear it again. Often pieces survived in the pile multiple times, only to be gotten rid of after more thought was put into the process; things like will I take it if I move, would I miss it if it was destroyed tomorrow, would I repurchase it if I lost it. This is pretty much how I did all of my belongings because if I don't have an attachment to it, and I won't miss it then I don't necessarily need it. The exceptions to this are things like art supplies and special occasion clothing. I also kept pretty much all of my previous housewares, assuming that when I move out again I will have nothing but those and it will save me from having to purchase a lot of things in order to function on my own.

I loosely based my decluttering on the KonMari methond, using the idea that if it doesn't bring me joy I don't need it, but if something served a purpose to me I had no need to get rid of things just to get rid of them. My biggest addition to this method was creating a pile of clothing that brought me joy and I would consider keeping if they still fit me properly, since I had gained a decent amount of weight in the last year or so. Under KonMari you are not supposed to try on anything but go on gut feelings alone, but for me I had to check a good bit of my gut feelings against my physical size to make sure I wasn't keeping things I couldn't wear.

I still go through my closet about once every two months just to make sure things are being taken out if I notice I haven't worn them or my preferences have changed regarding particular items. In the last 6 months about 3 more grocery bags of clothing I don't have any desire to keep has gone to donation!

Stay Beautiful and Keep Tidy, Ladies.


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Hello Lashes!... Or not?

So let's start here, I have both long and thick lashes naturally so I don't need something capable of massive amounts of drama for a daily basis. Some mascaras give me too much length and can't hold a curl for any period of time, however others clump my lashes together to simulate volume and instead cause me to look spidery instead. But my biggest problem with a lot of mascaras? They feel tacky and my lashes stick together every time I blink. It drives me crazy to feel like I need to pull my lashes apart or separate my top and bottom lashes with my finger nails in order to be able to see. Not to mention the fact that messing with my lashes often makes them start to flake and crumble. I have a terrible time with mascara and I have so far found only two that I enjoy and cause me almost no headaches.

I wanted to love this mascara... but I'm so glad I bought the travel size first to try it before paying the price for the full size. This mascara's wand causes clumps like no other, and once the clumping starts the wand can't fix it no matter what angle you hold it at. Even the spikey ball tip on the end can't fix them. And even worse, the ball tip is completely useless for my lower lashes and the rest of the wand is basically the same. I get no real coverage on my lashes, especially on my thin lower lashes no matter how much I try, unless you count the chunks of dried mascara I seem to be getting out of the tube.

Either I got a massive dud, or this product is not at all what it's marketed to be. I haven't heard many people talk about this mascara, and maybe this is why.

If you've had good luck with this product leave me some advice on how to use it.


Friday, December 30, 2016

Things I Need To Stop Buying

I've been on a decluttering spree now that it's come time to start moving furniture and redecorating and I've started to realize that I buy a lot of things I never end up using much. I find them interesting at the time but never really get into them enough to have spent the money. And unfortunately this applies to both my makeup and my daily life.

The list of things I need to stop buying in 2017 is as follows:

1. Candy: I never eat much candy as it is, and I frequently buy so much that I end up throwing it away because it goes bad or because I lose interest in eating it. I'm not big on eating sweets, but boy do I love to buy them.

2. Cream Eyeshadow: I enjoy them when I first get them, but then it just becomes a hassle to use them up before they dry out. I can't convince myself that using them as a base is something I enjoy.

3. Single Eyeshadows: This mainly applies to the ones I can't depot into palettes I already own, because I tend to reach for a palette faster than a single any day. There's a few colors I reach for as singles, mainly my Milani Bella Eyes colors because they're the perfect shimmery highlight color for the eyes, but I shouldn't be allowed to have more things like this because I just don't go for them enough.

4. Lip Glosses: I literally never wear lip gloss. Trying to pan what I already have is a huge task in itself, as the last thing I need to do is buy more while I still have this many to use up. I have probably two favorites that I'll actually pull out and enjoy putting on but beyond that, they need to go and never return.

5. Stilettos: I have knee and back problems; this should go without saying... If I can't walk long distances in it I can't have it. But more importantly, if I can't walk down a hill or the stairs without assistance from another human being or a hand rail I am NOT allowed to own the shoe. I don't care how pretty they are they hurt me and I need to wear more practical shoes in my daily life. (I have since declutter rd myself down to 3 pairs of stilettos that I can't bear to part with just yet.)

6. Nail Polish: Seriously, I own pretty much every color I could possibly ever wear, and there's no way I will ever finish them I have so many. Fancy top coats are my worst enemy though, I started buying up sheer colored top coats and milky white ombré top coats a while back and I never use them. I.Have.To.Stop.
And then glitter top coats became a purchase, and I've literally worn maybe 2 of them ever.

7. Colored Mascara/Liner: I just don't use them. Trying to pan what liners I have has been killing me this year. I threw away all the colored mascaras because they were WAY past their expiration, but the liners are all untouched except for the occasional swatch. I don't wear anything but black liner and mascara so I shouldn't even bother spending my money on anything else.

If I can manage to stop buying these things, 2017 will be a great year for my budget. Leave me a comment with one thing you have to stop buying in your life.

Happy Holidays, have a wonderful New Year and, as always, Stay Beautiful!


Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Pan That Product: Update #2

So it's been about two months since my last update, and surprisingly I haven't made nearly as much progress as I had expected to. I've done a pretty good job of using more of the products, but not much has been removed from the project since my last update.

I did finish the Josie Maran Pure Argan Milk sample and after a few uses of the Dr. Brandt Pores No More sample I decided it isn't really doing much for me and I will be tossing what's left in the bin since it was free and there isn't much left anyway.

In place of these items I decided to add my deluxe sample of the Too Faced Shadow Insurance eye shadow primer. I find this to be a really great primer and it keeps my eye shadow in place all day, but I dislike the lack of color in the product because it doesn't cancel out any of the purple tones from my veins which can interfere with my shadow looks. I will enjoy using it since it works so well, but I will likely not repurchase it on it's own because of this reason. It's almost entirely full but it's only 5 grams of product so it should be easy enough to use up if I put my mind to it.

I have made some pretty good progress on the It Cosmetics mascara, however it's really hard to want to use it because every time I try I end up with clumps on my lashes and even on the bottom lash line where I have almost no lashes I end up with them all clumped together.There's no way to get them to spread back out, even with running a regular lash comb through them the clumps disappear but my lashes still sit together in chunks. Definitely not a repurchase once it's gone.

The lash primer is so hard for me, because it requires so much work to get it to look great. I feel like I would like this product so much more if it was black, or if it was a mascara and not a primer. It adds an extra step that I don't feel like I need because I have full and long lashes already. (I know, every woman's dream come true) With it being white it's hard to cover with mascara, and it almost always pokes through, I'm much more likely to wear falsies before putting this on anymore. I loved it when I first bought it and reviewed it years ago, but I have learned so much more about makeup since then, and have tried so much more as well. I think it's just time for this to hit the bin. Especially since it's over the 6 month mark anyway. Maybe I will try a black fiber mascara and see what I think later this year. (Let me know if you're interested in that.)

I've been using the liquid liner from Hard Candy and the Milani liner duo every day as my eye makeup I'd like to think I've made a lot of progress on both, but they appear to still be going strong. the worst part is that since it's a real wood pencil I can't even twist it up to see how much is left. Same goes for the liquid liner; I have no way to tell how much is left. Hopefully I finish them soon.

Since I've been making such good progress on the other two liners I think I will for the time being put aside the Avon green pencil liner as well as the Essence potted liner, and come back to them after I have finished the first set.

I carry the Bath and Body Works lip gloss and the Avon Moisture Therapy lip balm in my purse for touch ups on the go. I'm making a ton of progress on the lip balm since I reapply multiple times a day while I'm working to keep from getting chapped lips this winter. The gloss is a little harder to use up, but only because I don't like reapplying it as often throughout the day. The peach gloss is about halfway finished and I apply it more often for going out that for being at work because it tends to look better with a full face of makeup which I don't usually wear at the warehouse.  The lip balm is about two thirds finished, and the berry lip gloss is on it's way to being half done.

The taffy lip balm is on deck to be started as soon as the Moisture Therapy is finished up, which should be by the beginning of the new year. There's about a quarter of the balm left in the tube currently and I haven't been using it lately while I'm focusing on the other one.

Of the perfumes, the Michael Kors sample is going the best, because it is small it lives in my purse so I spray it throughout the day when I feel like I need a little bit of a pick me up. It's the perfect amount of sexy with a lightness that doesn't over do it for day time. My other perfume, the Imari Seduction one, is much more of a night time going out scent and hasn't had as much use since I haven't been out much lately. They are both about a quarter finished at the current moment, but the sample is only .03 oz compared to the .5 oz.

The illuminating primer from Loreal hasn't gotten much use, mostly because I still can't figure out how to wear it to make it work for me. I still find that it changes my foundation when I mix it with it, and I lose it on my skin when I try to apply it like a liquid highlighter. I've used up less than a fifth of the .68 oz bottle, and I still have no idea how to make it show up on me. Even when I apply it and don't put foundation over it the product is so subtle it is basically nonexistent. I'm not sure yet if I will finish this product or declutter it, but I am going to think on it until my next update at the end of the year and keep trying to figure it out.

The foundation has no progress, same with the two hair products (the serum from Paul Mitchell and the Garnier conditioner) as well as the hand lotion. The hand lotion got lost in the shuffle when I changed purses a few weeks ago and I haven't remembered to change over the rest of my products. I have been giving my hair a rest from products until I can get it dyed again and the deep conditioner lives at my man's house now so I don't get much chance to use it with our busy holiday work schedules, but I'll get back to it in a week or so when work calms down.

My Garnier gel lotion is packed away in a travel bag that got lost in the clutter with the busy last few months and I will have to dig it out, because I have made decent progress by using it every day and I hope to finish it by the end of the year by continuing to do so. I have about a third of the canister left, and it only holds 3 oz or product so I should make it through the last ounce in about a month at the most.

Stay Beautiful Ladies!


Thursday, December 15, 2016

Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas Shopping Haul

Everyone loves the sales on Black Friday, but I personally hate being out shopping with that many other people in order to get them. I went out for a bit on Black Friday in the middle of the day, and it wasn't too horrible since a lot of people were at work. I didn't buy much, just two pairs of booties from Kohls and two of Hard Candy's Metallic Mousse liquid lip colors (Smoke & Mirrors, Sweet as Honey). 

I bought low heeled booties from Kohls so that I could get rid of some of the shoes I can no longer wear and still have shoes I enjoy wearing. I'm not sure if I've talked about this before, but I have somewhat severe joint problems in my knees that as they get worse it becomes harder and harder to wear shoes with high heels due to the strain they put on my joints when I walk. So slowly I have been getting rid of things that make my joints hurt, and replacing them with more practical options that are still cute. It's not a huge change as I practically live in combat boots and off-brand Sperry's, but it's something I didn't think I would be going through in my 20's. My whole wardrobe has been changing this year because I am adapting to all sorts of changes that show up in your mid 20's as you become less like a teenager and more like a woman. I'm excited to see what my style becomes with these changes and how I adapt to my new lifestyle.

As for the Hard Candy lip colors, I've swatched them as well as worn the gold one once, and while I enjoy the formula I had been expecting them to have been more like a liquid lipstick that dries and less of a cream lipstick formula. The colors are to die for, and I love the metallic sheen and I'll likely be picking up the rest of the colors when I can get my hands on them.

Cyber Monday I ordered the Grav3yardgirl Swamp Queen Palette from Tarte cosmetics as well as the two Tarteist lip paints from the same collaboration (Swamp Family and Texas Toast) I also threw in the Gifted smart mascara because I had seen it before and was curious to try it. with the sale the palette and lip paints were 30% off, and the mascara was only $10. I swatched the lip paints and the colors are as amazing as they looked in photos and on Bunny's channel on YouTube. I haven't gotten a chance to wear them out, but I plan to wear the red for Christmas. I haven't played with the paletter yet either, and can't bring myself to open the mascara because I already have several open. I'll have to get these all opened up and let you all know how I feel.

I made both a in store purchase and an online purchase from Sephora for the holidays. In my online purchase I was able to get one of the gift bags of samples that were free with a $30 purchase. To qualify I purchased the Elizabeth and James Nirvana mini perfume rollerball set which has 4 rollerballs, one with each scent in the Nirvava collection (Black, White, Burbon, Rose). They're all very elegant fragrances with depth and a darkness to them from woody and musky notes. I've been completely obsessed with the complexity and deepness of these fragrances, but the price for a full size is a little steep for me, so the minis were a great way to experience each one without buying 4 full size bottles.

In the free samples bag (which is a cute black and white striped makeup bag with the same jewel print that it on the holiday gift sets this year) you had a choice of three sets each with about 8 samples in it. Each set was different, but I chose the one I thought I would enjoy the most. I received 2 perfume samples, 4 skincare samples, and 2 makeup samples. 

For perfume, I ended up with a sample Nirvana White from Elizabeth James, which even though I have the rollerball, I am excited to have this as well because of my love for these fragrances. I also got a sample of a perfume I have never heard of called Chloe which is a powdery rose scent. I wasn't completely excited for this product, but it smells like something I am willing to try out, if not it will become a stocking stuffer for a friend this Christmas. 

For skincare, I received a sample of the Modern Friction dermabrasion face wash from Origins which seems like something I will really enjoy using. I also have an Erno Laszio Sensitive Cleansing Duo from the Soothe & Calm line. This comes with the cleansing bar and the cleansing oil. I haven't broken them open yet, but I always like to try new skincare for sensitive skin since I struggle with finding something that is sensitive enough for my skin but also gets the job done and cleans my skin enough. Next up was the Dr. Jart+ Every Sun Day UV Sun Fluid spf 30 sunscreen. I'm pretty excited about this one because it is very liquidy and light weight so hopefully it won't clog my pores or irritate my skin, it doesn't have that horrible sunscreen scent, but instead a pleasant citrusy one, and it melts into the skin without leaving being all kinds of oily residue behind. And the final skincare item, which also falls into the makeup category, is the Sephora brand Waterproof Makeup Remover fluid. It's a biphase liquid remover which doesn't smell too chemically, but I'm not sure how much I'll like it or if it will be too strong for my skin or leave behind an oily residue like the last few I have used in the past, but it's worth a try. 

For makeup, I picked the set that had the CoverFx Custom Enhancer Drops sample in Moonlight, because I absolutely had to have it. Everyone has raved about this on YouTube since it came out, and there was no way I was passing up the chance to give it a try and see whether it's worth the splurge. It's a gorgeous soft golden colored liquid made to be mixed with foundation, and you can bet I'm going to be all over that. I might even try applying it like a liquid highlighter to see how it looks. I'm totally excited to have this and I can' wait to try it out. The swatch of it was like liquid metal, and I can't handle it! And Finally, I got the sample of the Makeup Forever Artist Rouge Creme lipstick in C211 which is the perfect "My Lips But Better" shade. I wore this one night to work to test it out, and it both applies nice and smoothly and lasts a long time.

Along with my order I received three perfume samples that I picked,Mr. Burberry, and Versace Eau Fraiche to add to a present for my boyfriend for Christmas, and Eau de Cartier (another rose scent) which replaced one of the ones that was out of stock by the time they filled my order.

My In-store purchases at Sephora were mostly odds and ends that I had seen on my previous walks around the store and decided to pick up as a present to myself for working so hard. I started by picking up the Becca Glow on the Go set in Moonstone and the Anastasia Beverly Hills Metallic satin finish eyeshadow in Amber a metallic coppery shade. I then saw that Formula X nail polish was 50% off (making them only $5!) so I quick snatched up the shade Huntress, a deep emerald or olive with gold shimmer. which had been out of stock online for months, and the shade Intrepid which is an olive green or army green shade. At the end I finally convinced myself to buy the Bite Beauty multistick in Gelato, a dusty rose with a hint of brown which is a pretty good dupe for my favorite contour color from Revlon.

On the same shopping trip I ended up walking past MAC, and although I didn't get what I went in to get (an extra dimension shadow which was out of stock) I did end up with 3 items on clearance from the Star Trek collection. I got two pressed pigments (and I'll probably go grab a third since technically I bought the wrong one) To Boldly Go which is a mahogany color and Midnight which is a deep blue. I also was immediately overtaken by the nail polish in the shade Skin of Evil because of it's gorgeous silver metallic color with green and blue scattered throughout. I just couldn't resist!

Then, last week we went on a family trip to the outlet mall to do some Holiday shopping. I bought a couple of things in Rue 21 including a pair of jogger pants, two more pairs of shoes, a shirt, and a fake fur vest. I stopped in a bunch of stores looking at clothes and sneakers but came up empty in basically every store. We went to Bath and Body Works and I picked up some of the holiday scents. I of course picked up Vanilla Bean Noel in the large lotion and spray bottles since it's my favorite scent. I also picked up the small Ginger Bread Latte lotion and spray because they smelled yummy and the twisted peppermint small spray because the small bottles are buy 2 get 1 free. They're all very complex and not overly Christmasy. Most of them have a musky scent added to them to tone down the holiday scents.

Yesterday I went to Target to put together a spa kit for my best friend since she is just getting married and has a young daughter who runs her ragged every day. I figured she would enjoy a chance to pamper herself once in a while when she can get her hubby to watch their daughter for an hour or so. So after picking out some masks, bath bombs and a deep conditioning hair treatment for her, I had walked away with three nail polishes, a liquid lipstick and an all natural bees wax gift set for myself.
The nail polishes were on clearance and were Sinful Colors Supernova (1148), a neutral metallic, Sinful Colors Copper Pot (1503), an orange copper metallic, and Defy and Inspire's French Horns a silver and pink duochrome glitter polish. the liquid lipstick is from Tattoo Junkee and I'm just lucky I saw it when I passed it because there was only one hidden among the clutter. It's one of the chroma colors in Skinny Dip (2016-W) which is a matte pink lip color with a bright orange-copper chrome powder to put over top to change the look. They have a bunch of different types and I hope to get my hands on more of them soon, but I'm excited to have found this one! Finally the bees wax gift set is from Savannah Bee and has a lip balm and a body balm stick in it. The lip balm comes in Wild Blackberry and the body balm is Honey & Beeswax in Rosemary and Lavender. I was curious what the body balm would be, but thought I might see if it works for protecting my skin in the elements when it is really cold and snowy in the coming months. If not it may become a large lip balm, but either way it will do just fine. It might also do well for the cuticles and fingertips since I do manual labor for work.

Hope you ladies are as excited for these reviews as I am! 
Happy Holidays and Warm Thoughts

Why I haven't posted in a few months

I'm sorry to have fallen out of the habit of posting, but I will quickly get myself back on track. There's so much more to review in my vanity, and more coming every day. Between my job kicking up for the holiday season and requiring more hours out of me, and school coming to a close and needing more attention to finals and projects there just weren't enough hours in the day. The last month or so was filled with sleepless nights slaving over homework after having worked overtime, and watching the sunrise before going to sleep, and some days not sleeping at all. But it's all over now, the last project is in, the last final has been taken, and now it's back to my normal life. Plenty of time to review products, and plenty of products coming in for Christmas time.

Here we go!