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Friday, February 27, 2015

New NYX Intense Butter gloss/High Voltage lipstick swatches and review

Hey Guys!
I'm so excited that these are finally out! I had been hearing so much about these online and could not wait to try them. These are the NYX Intense Butter Gloss and their High Voltage Lipsticks. If you own any of the original Butter glosses, these are the same thing but super pigmented. The High Voltage lipsticks are new to their Spring line but I already love these.

Here's what they look like, I only purchased 2 of each color because I wasn't sure about them.
The Intense butter gloss- Funnel Delight and Spice Cake
The High Voltage Lipstick- Dahlia and Playdate

NYX Intense Butter Gloss and High Voltage lipsticks

Here are a few swatches of Funnel Delight and Spice Cake. They come packaged just as the Soft Matte Lip Cream does, with the same type of applicator. Funnel Delight is a bright Pink and Spice cake is a deeper kind of berry color although here it shows more red.

NYX Intense Butter Gloss
These are in the shade and in direct sunlight.

I like both of these, they are really pigmented and are almost the same formula as the original Butter glosses but I feel like these are a bit more sticky. They are still comfortable on the lips and they do stain a bit but I think they are a bit thicker so they do leave a slight tacky feeling.

The High Voltage Lipsticks I really love! These are so so so so creamy. If this were a concealer this would be awesome. I made the mistake of immediately opening these and swatching them a little too hard and took a chunk out of one. You can apply these with the slightest pressure and get full color. They are really creamy and still very pigmented. These are the shades Dahlia and Playdate. Dahlia is a dark purple color, it's not exactly black but very dark. Playdate is a nice almost pastel purple shade which doesn't suit everyone but I like it. These are also really glossy. In the shade you can't tell but in the sunlight you can see they are really shiny.

By the way, these come in 22 shades and the Intense Butter Gloss come in 12 shades.

NYX High Voltage Lipsticks
The swatch on top is in the shade and on the bottom in direct sunlight.

When I first swatched Dahlia, I thought Oh My God, this is so dark, I look like straight 90's gothic. After a while it grew on me and here's a picture I took the other day. My complexion is pretty light right now and I actually think this color is not bad on me. If you have fairer skin, I don't know that you'll like it as much but it is a really pretty shade. You should use a lip liner with these darker shades though, because they can get everywhere if you're not careful.

NYX High Voltage lipstick in Dahlia

Both of these are not super long wearing but last a good few hours as I said, the darker ones do tend to stain so it will stick with you for a while but the formula is by far worth it. You can get these on Ulta's website for $5.99 or in store. Why not go out and get a few? I hope you guys enjoyed this review! If you have any questions or requests, please feel free to leave me a comment. Thanks for reading!

A Guide to Gel Polish: CND Shellac

Hey guys! 
So I started writing this post a while ago and just recently read a post online from someone who was trying Shellac for the first time. I didn't realize so many people still have not tried it or even heard of it so I wanted to finish writing this to just give you a bit of info on the whole Shellac trend. 

Ok so Shellac has basically become a generic term for gel polish. CND (Creative Nail Design) actually came out with the first gel polish- Shellac. Many other brands have come out with their own version of gel polish- which all differ in names so many people have just gotten used to the term "shellac." Shellac or gel polish in general is a 3 step process- base coat, color coat, and top coat. It's basically a nail polish that lasts longer than an average polish- usually claiming up to 2 weeks wear time. The way they are used all differ as well- the amount of curing time, the steps used, etc. I just want to give you information and guidelines because most often I find people don't know exactly how it's used, what they're getting or really any information about it.

 I think the number one thing about working in a salon is education. It's important to tell clients what you are putting on them and why. It's the same as any beauty product, you don't just walk into a store and buy something for no reason. You want to know what it does, how it's gonna help you, why you should use it. The same goes for your nails. I know that a lot of people feel like they don't need to go to a salon to get their nails done but being educated on the product helps and some of these products are not safe if used incorrectly. So with that said- let me give you the rundown on "shellac"- 

CND Shellac

(For Professional Use Only)

CND Shellac in the color Hollywood

This is the shade Hollywood

- Not every product you get at the salon is "Shellac." There are many other versions of gel polish out there. 
- Be sure the nail techs are using the complete system of whatever brand it is- the same base coat, color coat and top coat. The bottles should all match or look similar. The only way for the product to work as it's intended is for it to be used as a system. 
- It needs to be "cured" under UV light for it to work- it will never "dry" on it's own. 
- For CND Shellac- the base coat should be cured for 10 seconds, and two minutes for each coat after. 
- 99% alcohol should be used to remove the tacky layer after curing the top coat of CND Shellac. 
- Shellac does not "dry" or "set" or whatever. The term is "cure" which means it hardens from the UV light.
- You can get nail art done with gel polish- just ask, it's just as easy as regular polish, but might cost a few dollars more. 
- The removal process is simple but different for different types of gel polishes. Not all are removed the same way. 
- You do not have to go back to the salon to have it removed. If it is CND Shellac- you can use acetone to remove it. 
- Do your research- if you're not sure about something, don't agree to have it put on your nails!
- Ask questions! Don't ever feel uncomfortable with asking questions. If you're not sure about what is getting put on your nails, ask. If the nail tech doesn't know or can't tell you- then that's not a good salon. 
- Gel polish is made for natural nails. People who don't wear acrylics or other enhancements and want to keep their natural nails looking good. 
- Many salons are CND Shellac certified- check out their website- search your area and it will tell you if the salon is certified which means they have been properly educated on the product and how to use it.   

I also wanted to mention that some salons will use a different top coat. Like I said, it only works as a system so if they are using something different, it may not last as long, and it may not remove the same way. 

The removal process is simple. If it was applied correctly, all you have to do is use cotton soaked in acetone (NOT nail polish remover). Apply the cotton to each finger and wrap with a small piece of foil. Let it set around 10 minutes and then using an orange wood stick, gently remove. Most salons won't charge you to remove it if you are getting it re-done.

Here are a few resources if you'd like more information: 

Another option I want to mention is CND Vinylux. This works kind of the same way but you don't need a light to cure it. It goes on like polish but wears like a gel. 

So that's pretty much the basics of gel polish and Shellac. I hope I cleared up some confusion about "shellac." If you have any questions, feel free to ask me. I am a licensed Nail Tech for those of you wondering and I was Shellac certified at one of the salons I worked at (currently I am a SAHM). Until next time...

Friday, February 20, 2015

Covergirl Bombshell Pow-der Brow + Liner Review

Hey guys!
I recently saw this on Covergirl's Instagram and spotted it at my local Target on one of my trips. Since seeing it on Instagram, I knew I had to find it. This is their new Bombshell Pow-der Brow + Liner. When I found it at Target, they only had three shades available- Black, Dark brown, and Medium brown but on Ulta's website, it does show that they sell it in a blonde shade as well. I bought this in the Dark brown shade which I typically use any brow product in dark brown because my hair is pretty dark. I found this one to be a bit too dark though, at least, for me.

Covergirl Bombshell powder brow + liner review

What made me what to purchase this is- well, I am ALWAYS looking for new brow products to try. I also thought it was interesting because of the way it's packaged; it looks like a typical liquid liner but this said it was powder and you can use it as eyeliner or for your brows. Here's what the back of the package claims: 

And the ingredients: 

So let's start with the brows. It does say that the product adheres to the brows which is completely true. I feel like the applicator is what really helps this apply nicely. It's got a round skinny applicator that looks almost just like- you know those Cat tails that are found in lakes? That's what it looks like to me anyway but it's really unique how it holds the powder. So I applied this to just the arch of my brows with a SUPER light hand. This stuff is very pigmented so you have to be careful with it and it does have some fall out of course, because it is powder. Anyway, so I applied it to my arch and then just used an old mascara wand to blend it through my whole brow. It blends really nicely and is surprisingly easy to keep the product where you want it. 

Brow demo of Covergirl bombshell powder brow

Here's a look at the applicator: 

Covergirl bombshell powder brow + liner

Here are a few swatches. You can see, it is easy to control. I was able to use it like a pen  to draw this heart with ease. Again, this is the dark brown shade. 

I really like how easy it is to apply in my brows and makes it that much quicker to get ready in the morning. I usually have to take out my angled brush and use two powders and a gel and this just makes it so quick to fill them in. By the way, if you want to check out my brow tutorial- you can find it HERE. The best part about this for a brow powder- it STAYS in place! Now, I know some of you will be mad at me for saying this but I have a hard time with the Anastasia Dip Brow. I know everyone loves it but for me, it just doesn't feel like it's water-proof, stay-proof and all that. Especially by the end of the day, if I forget and rub my brow, that's it. This Covergirl Pow-der is so awesome though. Seriously, it stays, even if you do rub it. It seems like the powder actually sticks to your skin rather than just brushes through the hairs. You get what I'm saying?

So next, I wanted to try it as an eyeliner since it does say you can use it as a liner. I used it for this quick wing and even then, it performed great. The applicator is not too big, it's a bit bigger than a regular eyeliner but not so much that it's hard to work with. I was able to line my entire lash line and even create a wing with it. Super simple, super easy. The powder is really soft and feels really comfortable. Like I said, it does have some fall out so you want to be careful if you wear contacts or are sensitive to anything in your eyes. I didn't have issues with it, but I did notice some powder on my face when I was done. 

Covergirl bombshell powder brow + liner

Overall, I love this product. I think it's great as a liner or brow product. I wish the dark brown was a touch lighter so I might try and purchase the medium brown shade to try but I really like this. Easy to use, applies well, stays on all day. Love it. If you are looking for another brow product, try this. This retails for around $9.00 and is available now. Let me know if you guys do try this and if you love it as much as I do. Until next time...

Friday, February 13, 2015

Jamberry nail wraps review and giveaway!

Hey guys!
Did everyone watch the Grammy's? I wasn't very impressed with the music this year- seemed like a lot of slow songs. Maybe I am just too old to know a lot of the people there but hey Beck won. I was like, what? Beck? Where has he been? So while everyone is talking about who wore what, I am just waiting to see what Fashion Police has to say about some of these artists. lol.

So today I have something fun for you guys. I recently got in touch with a rep from Jamberry nails, Xochitl. She's such a sweet girl and was kind enough to send me some Jamberry wraps to try. If you don't know what Jamberry is, check out her site HERE. So let me give you a bit of info about the company. It was started in 2010 by three sisters and what they are are basically wraps for your nails. They come in all kinds of designs and they are like stickers kind of- that's the easiest way to explain it. You apply them with a little bit of heat- from your hair dryer and they adhere to your nails for up to 2 weeks on your fingers and up to 6 weeks on your toes. 

Jamberry nail wrap kit

This is the kit that she sent me and it comes with every thing you need to apply the wraps. It's super easy and simple. The wraps come in a cute package like this with all the application and removal instructions on the back. They even offer a money back guarantee. : )

Jamberry nail wrap packaging

Here is 1/2 a sheet of wraps along with a few accent designs. 1/2 a sheet will give you enough for one mani and one pedi. The full set when you purchase online will give you enough for two sets, by the way, the full sets retail for $15.00.

Jamberry nail wraps

I've been a licensed nail tech since 2008 and have tried a few of these wraps from different brands and none of them lasted more than a few days on me so I was excited to try these. I manicured my nails before hand and wiped them down to remove any oils from my nails before applying. The good thing about these? No dry time and they only take a few minutes to apply. These are my freshly applied wraps. they came out really cute I thought, and I love pink so that didn't hurt. : )

Jamberry nail wraps
Excuse my dry hands

I am really hard on my hands and nails. I have two boys and we had a friend visiting this week so I had done some extra cleaning. In about three days, my wraps started lifting by the cuticle area and at the tips on a few of my nails. Surprisingly, (I am right handed) my right hand looked better than my left. 

After about five days, I had to remove three of my wraps because like acrylics, they were lifting at the cuticle and getting stuck every time I touched my hair. My right hand was still looking good and the left had only a few chips at the tips of the nails as you can see here. 

Excuse my super dry cuticles

I did not wear mine for the full 2 weeks, I did remove the rest seven days after I applied them.

Some things to think about with these wraps:

Everyone's nails are different. I have been doing nails for 7 years now and have seen it all. Not every product is for every person. Some people like certain products and even though a product may claim to be "long-wearing" or last X amount of days, everyone is different. 

I have applied gel polish (2 weeks wear time) to clients and have had clients come back in 3 days saying it already peeled, came off or had some issue with it. I have also seen clients come back in 3 weeks still wearing their gel polish looking as good as it did as the day I applied it with no issues but outgrowth. 

I personally have very dry hands and my cuticles grow very fast. Regular nail polish doesn't last but a week on me and gel polish about the same. 

With all that being said, I do like these Jamberry nail wraps. They didn't last as long on me as promised but I would still recommend them. If you are one of those people that your polish stays on for weeks and gel polish lasts even longer, try these!! Even if you aren't, I think these are a great alternative to going to the salon. If you have an event to go to, wedding, party, long weekend away with your significant other, these are great. I would recommend these for all the younger girls as well, for prom or some other special event at school. They are great for natural nails, they don't cause damage and cost less than getting acrylics or some other product put on. 

The last thing I want to mention is that you can also get these custom made!!! It is a bit more than the original wraps but you can upload photos and basically get anything you want on them! How cute would it be to wear a picture of your kids on your nails for say, their birthday party! Or what about a Michael Kors logo? The possibilities are endless!

Also, I wanted to point out, Xochitl is a great representative. She has so much knowledge about the product, any questions she can help you with, just awesome. I love to praise good customer service just as much as bad because I think it's something that is hard to find now a days. I also wanted to include her contact info here if you would like to make a purchase or just have questions.

Xochitl- Jamberry Nails Consultant
Instagram: @Jamminwithxoch 

So now for the fun part- Xochitl was nice enough to donate a set of wraps for a giveaway! If you want to try these out, visit us on Instagram (@militaryandmakeup) and (@Jamminwithxoch) for a chance to win a set!

Until next time...

Friday, February 6, 2015

Physician's Formula Argan Wear BB Cream Review

Hey guys!
So I'm back with another review for you. There is so much new drugstore makeup out there right now- I wish I could try everything! Have you guys been buying any of the new stuff?

This is one of the new products from Physicians Formula. They have recently come out with a new line of Argan oil products- blush, bronzer, oil, and BB Cream which is what I have for you today. This is the Ultra-nourishing Argan oil BB Cream in the shade Light/Medium. 

Physicians Formula Argan Wear BB Cream

It does have an SPF 30 and here's a swatch of the product. 

Here's what the claims are on the back of the packaging. This BB cream is promising a lot here- even out skin tone, brighten skin and even improve your skin's texture and elasticity. Since it does contain Argan oil, it is supposed to be like a moisturizer/foundation in one. 

Physicians Formula Argan Wear BB Cream

If you look at the directions, it says you can use this under your foundation though so I guess you could use it as a tinted moisturizer if you wanted to. I have been using this for a few weeks now, because I did want to see if it improved my skin's tone/texture as it claims (I will get to that in a minute). I have to say that I do actually like this product. I have been using it as a moisturizer/foundation so I apply my primer first then I apply this with a beauty blender or a flat top brush. The consistency is much thicker than most BB Creams I have used. Usually they are runny and thin but this one is a bit thicker and applies nicely. I find that it does cover a bit better than an average BB Cream as well. It's still not full coverage like a foundation would be but it does even out your skin and give a pretty good base. 

You can see I have some scarring on the left side of my face, which it didn't cover. I didn't use any concealer or anything to show the true coverage of this. It does go on quite shiny and greasy looking but I find that it absorbs into my skin once I've let it sit for a while but still feels a bit tacky. I always set my t-zone with a powder because I am more combination/oily but I don't find that it looks oily after I apply powder. It doesn't feel heavy but it's not super light on your skin, you can feel that there is something there so it's not that light weight. If you have dry skin, this is a great product for you. It does feel really hydrating when you first apply it and like I said, it does look really dewy but dries to a normal finish. If you have pretty decent skin, not a lot of scarring or blemishes, this will just make your skin look that much better. 

Even though I set this with a powder, I didn't feel like it lasted forever. By the end of the day, it had pretty much worn off on any areas I didn't set. It didn't look bad though, I could still see a bit of blush on my cheeks so that's promising. It will last a good few hours where it looks the same as you applied it but with my oily skin, it just broke down after about half the day.

I bought this in the shade light/medium. I believe it comes in only one other shade which is a shame. Like most of their face products, there is usually only light shades available so this will only work if you are about my complexion or lighter. 

One huge thing I want to mention is that this BB Cream has a STRONG smell to it. It does say on the packaging that it is "exotically scented" but this is a super strong smell. If you are not good with scented stuff, skip this. To me, it kind of smells like some kind of cleaning products- you know that smell you get when you walk into a hospital? Like sterile. lol. Seriously, it has a strong smell, not bad but just strong. I find that it does linger a bit as well. The first few times I applied this, I could still smell it on my skin like 30 minutes after I put it on. I don't know if I have just gotten used to the smell now but yeah, anyone else notice the smell?

Last thing, I do feel like my skin is more hydrated and a bit smoother after using this for about two weeks. I don't see a notable difference in tone or anything but it just feels a little nicer so maybe it is helping but I do tend to have more oily skin. Depending on your skin type, this could be a great product for you. I recommend you try it out if you haven't already. It is available now at many drugstores and retails for $12.99. 

Thursday, January 29, 2015

L'Oreal Blow Dry It Review

Hey everyone!
Today I have a review on one of L'Oreal's new products. This is the L'Oreal Blow Dry It Quick Dry Primer Spray. They've recently come out with this new line so there are a bunch of different products, creams, hairsprays, etc. I picked this up at Walgreens and I don't remember exactly how much I paid for it but it retails at other places for around $5.00.

When I saw this, I was like I have to try that! This product claims to speed up dry time while protecting against heat damage and if you're like me and have a ton of long/thick hair, I'm sure you will try anything that promises to dry it quicker. So this says it's a primer spray, you put it in your damp hair and then use your blow dryer like you normally would to dry your hair. 

L'Oreal Blow Dry It

I've had this for a couple weeks now and I have to say, I really like it. First, I love that it doesn't feel greasy in my hair. You know how you buy some products or oils and if you put too much or whatever your hair is like an oil slick and just forget it, then you have to wash your hair again... ugh! This one, doesn't do that. I spray this all over my hair- directly into my hair and nothing. When you first spray it in your hair, it does feel slick and kind of like oil but once you dry your hair, it's just nice. It leaves your hair feeling really silky and smooth and really light weight. You can't even tell it's in there and leaves a nice shine to your hair as well. 

Another thing, it smells pretty good. It has a fruity, kind of candy type smell- something like one of the Britney perfumes? Help me out here- uh, Fantasy? I'm not sure but it has a sweet smell that doesn't linger. 

As for dry time- I'm not really sure on this claim. I put this in my hair and dried it with my hair dryer and it took a good solid 6 minutes to completely dry my hair, all the way though. I mean, dry like enough to curl or straighten it- not damp at all. Now 6 minutes may not sound like a lot but when you are standing in one spot and holding that dryer above your head, 6 minutes feels like an eternity. lol. I didn't feel like it really cut the time it takes to dry my hair. Maybe I just can't tell. If you have thin hair or shorter hair, maybe you will be able to tell that it dries more quickly but for me, 6 minutes really isn't that quick. 

L'Oreal Blow Dry It

Overall, I still really like this product and recommend it. Like I said, it may work differently depending on your hair type so you might have better results with it. I do like how it makes my hair feel and the smell of it. When I do curl my hair after applying this, my hair still looks and feels good and soft. It leaves it shiny and very touchable. If you have damaged hair or usually use an oil or serum (as my sister's like to call it "fro-be-gone"), I think you would love this product. It's does the same type of thing and doesn't weigh your hair down.

Have you already tried it? What did you think? If you've tried any of the other products in this line, I'd love to know your thoughts. : )

Friday, January 23, 2015

All about Brows- How I fill mine (Tips/tricks/products to use)

Hey everyone!
Ok so today we are talking brows! I know this is like a super touchy subject for everyone because everyone likes their brows a certain way so I'm just gonna show you how I do mine. This is what works for me, what I personally like doing and you don't have to do this to yours. I just wanted to share some info in case you've never filled your brows before or maybe you need some recommendations for new products or whatever.

Sadly, I am not blessed with full thick/dark brows so I have been filling in my brows since forever. lol. Really, I have been penciling in my brows since I was about 16 and I know I don't look it but I actually just turned 31 so yeah, it's been a while. I have my moms brows which are super thin and light- really? Both my sisters have full, thick, pretty brows and I get this? Not fair. My brows have gone from super thin to super dark and penciled in, to barely there and everything in between. Check out this picture- this is around 10 years ago of me and my sisters.

 Anyway, so here are my brows before and after. I usually tweeze mine to shape them up. I've never had them waxed or threaded anything because I just feel like I don't have that much hair and even when they grow out, they still aren't that dark so you hardly notice. 

Here's the products I use- for now. Every few months I find myself changing how I do them or what I put in them. It really depends and with new products I find, I try them and like them or don't so it really changes all the time, but for now, these are the products.

I use these two small spoolie brushes- one to brush through my brows and the other to apply powder. I also use this angled brush from BH Cosmetics and a small eyeliner brush from ELF Cosmetics along with their eyebrow lifter and filler pencil. I set my brows with the Benefit Gimme Brow, if you haven't tried it, you need to get it. I have a whole review on it HERE. The main product I use on my brows is the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Duo. This comes in a bunch of different shades and has two shades of powders in this one container. 

Brow products

Here's one brow done. What a difference right? 

So I like to brush my brows with my spoolie before I apply anything. Using my angled brush and the dark shadow in the duo, I apply that to the bottom and top of my brow, just following the natural shape but not applying any product to the inner 1/3 of my brow. Then I fill everything I outlined in using the same dark powder. I add more to areas that are sparse or non-existent. Then I take an old mascara wand and dip that in the lighter shade of powder. I use this powder for the inner part of my brow. I just brush it gently in that inner part where there was no product. I also brush upwards- the direction of the hair growth. 

Please excuse my brows- I am trying to get them to grow out a bit and fill in. 

Lastly, I use my Gimme Brow to keep the hairs in place and add some extra volume to them. The Gimme Brow has little fibers so it really makes my brows look like I have more hair than I do. Here I added some of the ELF Lifter under my brows just to sharpen it up. Obviously if you use concealer or something like that you want to blend it into your skin. (I took this picture just after I applied it so you could see it.) And that's how I do my brows. I think mine look pretty natural. I don't add a ton of product or multiple products so they don't look crazy. It all depends on preference. If you like a stronger brow or maybe you are going out for the night, you would want to add more and make them darker.

I would recommend doing it this way if you're brows are really light like mine. If you have fuller brows and just need to fill in a few areas, then do that. Add powder just to those areas. Now, I like to do my brows after my face makeup so when I powder my face to set everything, I go over my brows. I feel like it helps hold any product I put on them better. Anyone else do this? Just something to try if you don't.

A Few tips:

You can use any product you like- powder, pomade, gel, pencil or a combination of all if you'd like. It really depends on what suits you. I personally think it helps to fill them in if they are light like mine. If you are worried that you will look like you have sharpie drawn on your face, don't. You just need a little practice and using powder is the easiest way to keep it natural. 

Start with a little, you can always add more. 

If you are already filling in your brows, try cleaning them up with concealer or adding a brow highlight underneath after you've filled them in. This really makes a huge difference. Seriously try it, you will like how it looks. 

Try using short strokes going in the direction of the hair growth and keep the darkest shade on the arch and at the end of the brow. 

If you want a super natural look, use a fiberized gel like the Gimme Brow just to add some volume/color to your brows. 

As they say, your brows are sisters not twins- they should look similar but not exactly the same. Don't worry about trying to get them perfectly even or the same because the more you try, the more you will mess it up. Trust me.

If you don't want to buy a brow product just yet, try using an eye shadow that is just a few shades lighter than your hair and that matches your skin tone. (Red heads, blondes, etc.) Even though I have dark hair and black eyebrows, I would never use black powder on them. Find something that fits with your complexion. 

If you use the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow, I have read that it's easier to apply when you add a tiny amount of oil to it. (Any type of oil. Coconut oil or baby oil would work.)

There are tons of brow products out there. Start trying a few and see what you like best and what works for you. If you have any recommendations for me, please let me know! I am a bit brow obsessed so I will try anything! 

I hope you guys enjoyed this post and learned something! Please let me know what you'd like to see next and any products you'd like me to review! Until then...

Friday, January 16, 2015

5 Best Drugstore Concealers

This post contains affiliate links. This means that I get a small commission at no cost to you when you choose to make a purchase through the links provided. 

Hey everyone!
How was everyone's week? It was cold here most of the week so we couldn't do much. I know, cold in TX? Yes! I can't believe it either. I love the cold but with the little ones, and flu season in full swing, not such a good idea right?

So today I have for you my top five concealers- two of which are palettes so we are really talking about more than five. Hopefully this will help if you are looking for a new concealer and by the way, all of these are from the drugstore so they are super affordable. : )

So to start with the singles, we have Pixi Correction Concentrate in Brightening Peach. Pixi is sold at Target and this concealer sells for $12.00 so it's a little expensive for drugstore but this is completely worth it. I believe they do sell this in a different shade as well but I don't know that you can purchase it at the store or if you have to buy it online. Anyway, this concealer is great because it is a peachy color which covers dark circles really well. It's also pretty creamy and the amount you get in this jar, 0.1 oz, will last quite a while. 

The next one is the Maybelline Fit me Concealer. I know a lot of people rave about this and for good reason. This is my favorite one of all. It's creamy and blends really well and applies with a doe-foot applicator so you don't even have to get your hand full of makeup. I have heard that this is a dupe for the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer. Personally, I don't own it so I don't know if that's true but this is a really nice concealer. I have it in the shade Fair which is light but it covers and brightens at the same time. This retails for around $5.00 and you can purchase it almost anywhere. Not bad considering the Nars is $29.00! 

Ok and onto the ELF Studio HD Lifting Concealer. This is my all time favorite concealer! I know I said the Fit me was my favorite, but this one really is. I have this in the shade called brightening which has a yellow tint to it. This one is easy to apply, creamy, blend-able and I just love it. The only issue I have with this is that I am allergic to it! Ugh! It has an ingredient that I am allergic to so I don't actually use it because it will make me itch like crazy! I was using it previously and even re-purchased it recently to see if it still irritated my skin and unfortunately, it does : (  I really do love this concealer though, I love the yellow undertone and the brightening effect it gives. The best part? It's $3.00 on the Eyeslipsface website

 From bottom: Pixi, Maybelline Fit me, ELF HD, 
ELF Brow lift

Before I show you guys the two palettes, I wanted to mention, I added this ELF Eyebrow Lifter & Filler because I know a lot of people use concealer under their brows to clean them up. This is the product I use under my brows when I want them to look a little more sharp and nicer. This is in Ivory/Medium and I really like this under my brows b/c it's not as stark as concealer, instead it has a pinkish tone to it which I like. Anyone else use this for their brows? 

Here is the Sonia Kashuk Hidden Agenda Concealer Palette. I originally heard about this palette from Emily Noel's Beauty Broadcast channel on Youtube and decided to go out and get it. You can also find this at Target for around $10.00.

 Sonia Kashuk Palette

It comes with three shades of concealer and a powder. All the shades vary a little as you can see and one does have a greenish tint to it. This is great because it covers any redness you might have from a blemish or if your skin tends to have that issue. These concealers are a bit drier than most, they don't glide on your skin as easily but applied with a warm finger, they go on quite well. I like the powder in here as well, it's really silky and just feels good. Also since it has three shades and a powder, it cuts your time from having to use different products. I recently did a post using this in my No Makeup Makeup look, if you want to see how I used it, you can read it here.

ELF Concealer Palette

This is the ELF Studio Complete Coverage Concealer palette and mine is in the shade Light. This comes with four different shades of concealer and you can actually get this on the eyeslipsface website in two other shades for a mere $3.00. Yup, this palette is super affordable and I don't know if you can tell by the photo but all the shades are really creamy, I mean REALLY creamy. You could use this as a foundation- that's how creamy and blend-able they are! I love this palette for the variety as well. You can use the darker shade here and the lighter shade there. If you're skin tone is in between, you can mix and match the shades- really, just a great palette. 

So there you have it, five drugstore concealers that are all awesome at coverage and brightening and help keep a little money in your pocket. Are any of these your favorites? If not, what are yours? I'd love to try some new ones.
 Happy Friday everyone! 

Friday, January 9, 2015

No makeup makeup look (using only 4 products)

This post contains affiliate links. This means that I get a small commission at no cost to you when you choose to make a purchase through the links provided. 

Hi guys! 
So I wanted to do this post for a while and here it is finally! This is my "no makeup makeup" look or "minimal makeup" using five products or in my case, four. I only used four physical things because a lot of the products I used can be used for more than one thing on your face. I recommend all these products and use each almost everyday. 

Ok so here's the products I'm talking about. This is super minimal makeup so I only used concealer, blush, bronzer, filled in my brows and applied some mascara to my lashes. I used my Benefit Cheeky Sweet Spot blush set, Sonia Kashuk Concealer palette in 07/light, Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow duo in Dark brown, and Flower Beauty Extreme Measures Lengthening mascara in Intense black.

I have nothing on my face in the left picture. On the right I applied the darker shade of concealer to my blemishes and the lighter shade under my eyes to brighten them up. You don't want to use the same concealer for your face as under your eyes which is why I like this palette. It gives you three different shades and a powder. The reason being is that just like they say about highlighting/contouring- you want to highlight under your eye area and brighten it but for any blemishes, scars, or anything you want to cover, you don't want those areas highlighted so you should use a darker shade of concealer to hide them. I set the concealer with the powder that comes in the palette with my ELF Blush brush and added some powder to my T-zone as well.

(Please excuse my bare face!)

What a difference brows make! I use the darker shade in the brow duo on the outer part of my brows and the lighter shade on the inner parts and blend the two together. (I'll be doing a brow post soon!) I think brows are super important. Even if you have full/thick brows, I would recommend you fill in the sparse areas and use a brow gel to keep them looking nice and groomed. If you are really pressed for time, try using Benefit's Gimme Brow. It's a brow gel with tiny fibers that will help fill in your brow with minimal effort. If you want to read my review on it and get some more info, you can find it here. Any brow kit you have would work for this- if you like to use pencil or tinted gel, by all means do it. Whatever you feel comfortable with. I personally like this brow duo and have been using it forever. I also use this small angled brush from my BH Cosmetics Berry brush set. I got this set for free when I purchased some items from BH Cosmetics. I have a review of their Dark Rose palette if you'd like to read it here.

(Don't mind the dirty brushes, they need a good cleaning!)

I then used the Hoola bronzer to warm up my complexion- around the hair line on my temples and in the hollows of my cheeks. I also used a bit of this in the crease of my eyes. I think the bronzer really wakes up your skin and by adding some color, you don't look so tired and pale. For blush, I mixed the first two shades, Dandelion and Bella Bamba and applied that with my ELF Complexion brush to the apples of my cheeks, sweeping it back toward my ear. The blush also really helps to make you look more awake and gives you that natural flush of color- like you've been running. That's the only thing I liked about doing PT in the morning- right after working out, I'd shower and get to work and I felt like my skin always looked better and more glowy. If you want something that does double duty, try the ELF Baked Blush in Peachy Cheeky- it gives some color to your cheeks but also has some glow so it's acts as a highlighter as well. Finally, I used the Flower Beauty mascara on my lashes- love this mascara by the way. If you haven't tried it, get it, you won't be sorry. 

(Excuse the messy hair- I was in a hurry!)

And that's it! Super simple, minimal makeup look. You can do this in less than 10 minutes and it really makes a difference when you're pressed for time. I didn't add anything to my lips except some Vaseline but you could go with just a gloss or baby pink lipstick to add to the "natural" look. I love that this was so quick and easy, it helps to use products that you can use for multiple things or in multiple ways. What are some of your favorite products to use for a "no makeup makeup" look?