Beauty, Cosmetics, Skin Care

My Morning Skin Care Routine

Today I am going to share with you my morning skin care routine. I strongly believe that investing in your skin is one of the most important personal investments that one can make. This is true from both a health and beauty standpoint. However, I don’t think that you must necessarily break the bank to do so. Brands like The Ordinary from DECIEM are making affordable, high quality skin care products more accessible to all. The Ordinary’s creed is: “Clinical formulations with integrity.” I have been testing a few of their products for the last few months. In this post, I will walk you through the steps of my AM skin care routine and share my thoughts on what products have worked best for me. FYI: This post is not sponsored and all products have been purchased with my own funds.

Background: I’m 32 years old but most people guess that I’m in my mid-to-late 20s. I have a fair to light complexion. My skin would probably be best described as combination, but lately it’s been a little more on the dry side. I get occasional hormonal acne on my t-zone. Otherwise, breakouts have never really been an issue for me. My biggest skin care concerns would be: anti-aging, redness, large pores and uneven skin tone.

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Step 1: First, I cleanse my face using my Clarisonic Mia 2 ($169) and The Cleansing Gel ($90 for 6.7 oz of product) which I bought when I went on a major La Mer binge. (Let’s just call it a moment of temporary insanity.) Amazingly, I still have about half a bottle left. It’s a gentle, foaming cleanser ideal for dullness, uneven texture and dryness. Would I repurchase it? No. It’s a very effective cleanser, but there are many other options available for a fraction of the price. However, I paid $90 for it so I will get my money’s worth!

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If I’m pressed for time, I’ll soak a cotton pad in either the Bioderma or L’Oreal Micellar Water and wipe it over my face for a quick cleanse. My favorite cotton pads are from Shiseido ($5 for 40 sheets) because they’re ultra soft and gentle on the skin.

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I use the sensitive brush head for my Mia 2. Tip: I buy my replacement brush heads from Amazon for much cheaper than in stores. Even most of the off-brand heads will work. You should change your Clarisonic head at least once a month to keep things hygienic.

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Step 2: After gently drying my face with a clean wash cloth, I apply the Buffet ($14.80 for 30 ml) by The Ordinary to my face, neck and décolletage. You should apply the products with the lightest consistency first. The Buffet is a “Multi-Technology Peptide Serum.” In addition to multiple peptide complexes, this product also contains “probiotic complex (with lactococcus lactis lysate), in a base of 11 skin-friendly amino acids and multiple hyaluronic acid complexes.” Hylauronic acid is important because it hydrates the skin. If you have dry skin, then adding hylauronic acid to your skin care routine is an absolute must. The Ordinary also carries a Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 Solution if you don’t opt for the Buffet. Again, you can also find H.A. for relatively cheap on Amazon.

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Step 3: I like to incorporate a serum containing Vitamin C into my routine because it has a wide variety of benefits. Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant, brightens the skin, boosts collagen and reverses signs of aging. I apply ALL of my skincare products to my face, neck and décolletage. Right now, my favorite serum is Vine[Activ] Glow Activating Anti-Wrinkle Serum by Caudalie ($52 for 1 oz.) It’s formulated with Caudalie’s Anti Cell Burn-Out Complex which is designed to address damage caused by “common pollutants and life stressors.” It also contains the brand’s signature grapeseed polyphenols, spruce extract to support natural antioxidant defenses, Vitamin C, Vitamin E to boost radiance and hyaluronic acid to hydrate skin and defend against wrinkles. This serum makes my skin seriously glowy. Another Vitamin C serum that I’ve tried recently is Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2%  by The Ordinary ($5.80 for 30 ml of product.) This is a water-free, silicone-free suspension because water can destabilize Vitamin C. I didn’t really care for the texture of this product, so I will be trying their Vitamin C Suspension 30% in Silicone ($6.80 for 30 ml of product) in the near futureFYI: Ricky’s NYC now carries The Ordinary products.

Step 4: Next, I apply eye cream by very lightly patting it around the orbital bone and onto the eyelid with my index finger. You should never rub or pull at the delicate skin around your eye. I have yet to find my holy grail eye cream, so I’ve been experimenting with different brands. Right now I’m testing a deluxe sample the Tarte Maracuja C-Brighter Eye Treatment ($38 for 0.35 oz) It’s not a bad eye cream, but I don’t think I’d purchase the full size. My quest for my ride or die continues. What’s your go-to eye cream?

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Step 5: Moisturizing is a crucial part of any skin care regime. At the moment, I’m loving Drunk Elephant’s Lala Retro Whipped Cream ($60 for 1.69 oz.) It’s thick and creamy without being heavy or greasy. It has a lightweight whipped texture. I like that it has a pump that’s much more hygenic than an open jar which can become a breeding ground for bacteria. It’s also noncomedogenic so it won’t cause breakouts. Currently I use this moisturizer in the AM and PM. My all time favorite moisturizer is Crème de la Mer by La Mer but it’s quite a splurge at $85 for 0.5 oz of product. I tend to only use the La Mer moisturizer at night.

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Step 6: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, wearing sunscreen 24/365 is probably the most important bit of anti-aging advice that I’ve ever received. Most dermatologists recommend a minimum of SPF 30 and a maximum of SPF 50. Personally, I prefer to err on the side of caution by using SPF 50. I never skip this critical step even if my foundation contains SPF. I like the Algenist SUBLIME DEFENSE Ultra Lightweight UV Defense Fluid SPF 50 ($28 for 1 oz) because it’s oil-free so it won’t break me out. Also, it contains Alguronic Acid which is known for its anti-aging properties. I would recommend the Ultra-light Hydrating Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50+ by Eau Thermale Avène ($24 for 1.69 oz) for those with very sensitive skin. The Algenist lotion is a physical sunscreen; whereas the Avène lotion is a chemical sunscreen. I found this blog to be very helpful as it discusses the differences between physical and chemical sunscreens as well as the pros and cons of each. The jury is still out on which type is more effective. It’s really just a matter of preference and what works best for your skin. Both of these sunscreens are rich in antioxidants which help prevent premature aging. When shopping for a sunscreen, it’s very important to select one that contains broad-spectrum UVA/UVB filters. Some people prefer to opt for a moisturizer that contains SPF. I’m not really a fan of such products, but to each their own. NOTE: Do not wear a moisturizer containing SPF to bed!

So there you have it! Remember that better skin means less makeup and less risk of premature aging. Stay tuned for my nighttime skincare regime!

What are your must-have skin care products?

xoxo, Sarah

Beauty, Cosmetics, Hair

BREAKING NEWS! ColourPop is coming to Sephora!

 

BREAKING NEWS! ColourPop is coming to Sephora!

Trendmood1 just announced that ColourPop is coming to Sephora around November! Reportedly, ColourPop’s pricing will not change.

What are your thoughts on this news? Personally, I’m very surprised. It’s certainly an interesting coupling. Most of the brands that Sephora carries are high-end; whereas ColourPop’s prices are more comparable to the drugstore.  However, I love ColourPop’s products and having easy access to them at Sephora will be convenient. (Plus, no more shipping fees if you’re a Rouge!) I’m definitely not mad about this news at all. I think that Sephora is trying to tap into the Millennial/Generation Z markets as ColourPop is especially popular with teenagers and young adults. Is Sephora trying to move in the same direction as Ulta?

I’m eager to read your opinions so please leave a comment below!

xoxo, Sarah

Beauty, Cosmetics, Makeup

Huge Drugstore Haul (Part 6) L’Oreal Colour Riche Matte Lip Colour & Lip Liner

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(Photos are by my beloved, Joseph LaMura. Thank you for your love, support and encouragement in this endeavor.)

Welcome to Part 6 of My Huge Drugstore Haul! Yesterday we discussed some high-end matte lipsticks, today I’m going to share some exciting new, budget-friendly lip products from L’Oreal. The brand has expanded their Colour Riche Lipstick line to include new matte lipsticks and lip liners.

The Lipsticks:

Intense Hydration. Rich, Matte Color. Comfortable Wear. Smooth, Creamy Feel. Take it to the matte with 16 new gorgeous L’Oreal Matte Lipstick shades. Indulge in richness beyond compare with our most luxuriously rich matte lip color and intensely rich hydration. With this L’Oreal matte lipstick your lips are kept soft and smooth with a creamy feel. With a spectrum of gorgeous shades from bold to nearly nude, Colour Riche Matte Lipstick offers a shade that’s perfect for any look and any occasion. 

The L’Oreal Colour Riche Matte Lipsticks retail for $8.99 for 0.13 oz of product. They’re available at Ulta, Target and select drugstores such as Walgreen’s.

So far, I’ve managed to track down the following shades:

  • Matte-Cademia (808) – A light nude
  • Matte-Sterpiece (802) –  A pinky nude
  • Matte-Caron (800) – A peachy nude
  • At The Drop Of A Matte (711) – A cool lilac purple
  • Matte Mandate (712) – A bright fuschia
  • Matte-Moiselle Pink (703) – A rose pink

The Formula: These lipsticks are very creamy, hydrating and pigmented. They are best described as having a demi-matte finish. The nudes seem to have less staying power than the brighter colors. L’Oreal recommends first lining and filling in the lips with one of the Colour Riche Matte Lip Liners before applying the lipstick on top. Using this application method seems to extend the wear time of these lipsticks. You will have to reapply after drinking or eating, but this is pretty standard for most lipsticks.

NOTE: Handle these lipsticks with care as they’ve very soft and can break easily.

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Photo from Target

The Lip Liners:

L’Oreal has also released seven Colour Rich Matte Lip Liners that correspond with the lipsticks. The lip liners retail for $8.99 for 0.04 oz of product.

Sharpenable Pencil, Creamy Matte Finish Comfortable Wear. Wear Alone or With Lipstick. Colour Riche Matte Lip Liners create definition to give a plumped appearance while enhancing your creamy matte lip color. With our wide range of shade from nude to bolds, you can find a matte lip liner to pair perfectly with any Colour Riche Matte Lip Colour.

The Formula:  Like the lipsticks, these lip liners are really creamy and glide smoothly on to the lips. They coordinate well with the lipsticks and can also be worn alone. They are not retractable, so keep a sharpener handy.

Comparisons: These lip liners are very similar to the MAC Pro Longwear Lip Pencils which retail for $21 each for 0.04 oz of product. Although MAC has a broader shade range, you could purchase two L’Oreal Lip Liners for the price of one MAC Lip Liner.

I purchased the following shades:

  • Matte-Stermind (112) – A light-medium nude that pairs nicely with Matte-Sterpiece, Matte-Moiselle Pink and Matte-Caron. Honestly, it could work with any of the nude shades. This is the closest match to my natural lip color. Matte-Stermind is a stunning nude for light to medium skin tones.
  • Matte’s It (110) – This is another nude, but it’s darker than Matte-Stermind. This would really compliment medium to deep skin tones. I like to pair it with the lightest of the nude lipsticks, Matte-Cademia, so that it doesn’t wash me out.
  • Best Mattes (108) – This bright fuschia pairs perfectly with Matte Mandate.
  • Strike A Matte-Ch (106) – This is an exact color match to At The Drop Of A Matte.

See swatches below:

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(From left to right: Matte MandateBest MattesStrike A Matte-Ch, At The Drop Of A MatteMatte-Moiselle PinkMatte’s ItMatte-Caron, Matte-Sterpiece Lip LinerMatte-Sterpiece Lipstick and Matte-Cademia)

Final thoughts: I’m really loving these lipsticks because they’re highly pigmented, non drying and feel comfortable on the lips. Furthermore, I like that they have coordinating lip liners. Also, the price is right. I would never guess that these lipsticks came from the drugstore. They wear like luxury lipsticks. Although I own many high-end lippies, I’d rather spend my money on a great eyeshadow palette, foundation or skincare product. I think that the drug store has a lot to offer as far as lipstick is concerned.

My personal favorite lipsticks in the collection are Matte-Moiselle Pink, Matte-Caron and At The Drop Of A Matte. My favorite lip liners are Matte-StermindBest Mattes and Strike A Matte-Ch. I grade these products an A. Well done, L’Oreal!

xoxo, Sarah

Beauty, Cosmetics, Makeup

NEW! Pat McGrath Labs – Lust: MatteTrance Lipstick

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Legendary British makeup artist Pat McGrath has wowed us once again with another stunning launch from her namesake cosmetics line, Pat McGrath Labs. McGrath made her first foray into lipsticks with last year’s Lust 004 which spawned the glittery lips trend. This time she turned her attention to mattes with the release of the Lust: MatteTrance Lipsticks. These nine first edition/limited edition lipsticks range in color from nudes to dark purple. They retail for $39 individually, $95 for each of the three trios curated by shade or $275 for the entire collection exclusively at Sephora. Yes, these beauties are pricey but they are luxury lipsticks available in very limited quantities. Later in this post, I will discuss some more budget friendly dupes.

Entrancing color that satisfies with supreme hydration and opulent matte opacity. Flaunt your fixations orally in this luxurious, richly pigmented formulation that cloaks lips in a lightweight well of rich colour. Like a good lover, this lipstick lays down a high impact with a strong finish. 

The Lust: MatteTrance Collection features the following shades:

  • Omi – Mid-tone Rose
  • 1995 – Warm Light Nude
  • Flesh 3 – Brown Rose
  • Full Panic – Bright Fuschia
  • Elson – Blue Red
  • Obsessed! – Bright Orange Red
  • Antidote – Magenta Violet
  • McMenamy – Deep Burgundy
  • Deep Void – Deep Blackened Purple

The trios are as follows:

  • Skin Show – Omi, 1995 and Flesh 3
  • Colour Blitz – Elson, Obsessed! and Full Panic
  • Vicious Venoms – Antidote, McMenamy and Deep Void

 

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The nudes seem to be the best-selling shades in the collection. I purchased Omi, 1995 and Elson. However, I was able to try on Obsessed!, Full Panic and Flesh 3 in-store.

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All photos from the brand

Packaging: These lipsticks arrived in the standard Pat McGrath gold metallic plastic bag packaging with lots of gold sequins inside. I’d advise opening these packages over a trash can to avoid getting sequins everywhere.

The lipstick casing itself is extremely chic and luxurious. The lipstick tube is a sleek black and gold with a gold lip on the front. A unique feature of these lipsticks is that with the gold lips in front, twisting the gold part of the lipstick tube makes the bullet come out straight. Conversely, twisting the black base with the gold lips in front makes the lipstick come out as it normally would.

The Formula: The formula is thin in texture but intensely pigmented. It glides on effortlessly with just one swipe. These lipsticks are very opaque. They are comfortable to wear and non-drying. My personal favorite is 1995 although Omi (named after Naomi Campbell, naturally) is slightly more creamy. Flesh 3 is the final nude in the Skin Show Trio. On my fair skin, it looked like a deep reddish burgundy, but I think it would be absolutely gorgeous on darker skin tones as a nude.

The third lipstick that I purchased was Elson which is a classic, blue based red. I am a huge fan of red lipstick and I know that I’ll get plenty use out of this one. It’s another winner in my book.

Dupes: Since many of these shades are already sold out and not everyone wants to shell out $38 for a single lipstick, I’ve listed some dupes below:

  • Omi – MAC Twig ($17)
  • 1995 – MAC Whirl ($17)
  • Flesh 3 – MAC Paramount ($17)
  • Full Panic – MAC Killing Smile (LE.) I just purchased this lippie which is why I passed on Full Panic. These two lipsticks are practically identical.
  • Obsessed! – MAC – Lady Danger ($17) and NARS – Annabella ($34) NOTE: Annabella is more red whereas Obsessed! is more orange toned.

Availability: Currently, Omi, 1995, Flesh 3, Elson, Skin Show and Colour Blitz are sold out on the Sephora website.

These products will be available for in-store purchase in at these locations on 7/29:

NYC – Times Square & Union Square
Atlanta – Lenox Square
San Francisco – Powell Street
Las Vegas – The Forum Shops at Caesar’s Palace
Houston – Houston Galleria
LA – Hollywood & Highland

Final Thoughts: Unsurprisingly, Pat McGrath really hit one out of the ballpark with this collection. Although I could do without all of the sequins, the presentation is stunning and the formula and pigmentation are impeccable. If you feel like treating yourself to a beautiful luxe lipstick, then I’d highly recommend checking these out while they’re still available. However, there are also some great alternatives at half the price which I’ve listed above. This collection gets an A+. I can’t wait to see what Pat McGrath comes out with next. We’ve already seen highlighters, pigments, glitter and lipsticks. With such a talented, innovative and trendsetting artist, the possibilities are endless.

What’s your favorite luxury lipstick?

xoxo, Sarah

Beauty, Cosmetics, Makeup

Thoughts on the Anastasia Beverly Hills Subculture Palette

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Photo from POPSUGAR

First of all, let it be known that I’m a huge fan of Anastasia Beverly Hills. I am by no means bashing the brand in this post. However, I will not be purchasing or reviewing the new Subculture Palette until certain issues are addressed.

If you’ve watched any reviews of the Subculture Palette on YouTube, then you already know that this palette is a colossal mess. These eyeshadows are so powdery that even dipping a brush into the pan creates massive fallout. Yes, I’m aware that some fallout is normal but this takes it to a whole other level. There have also been major issues with pigmentation and blendability.

I think that Subculture is a stunning palette with tremendous potential. It was intended to be a companion palette to the Modern Renaissance, but quality-wise they couldn’t be more different. Hopefully Anastasia Beverly Hills will fix the problems associated with the first batch. Until then, I will not be paying $42 for this palette or wasting your time or mine with another redundant bad review. I would really love to own this palette but not in its present form. I have faith that ABH will make the necessary changes.

Anastasia Beverly Hills is offering refunds to customers not satisfied with their purchase.

What’s your take on the controversy surrounding the Subculture Palette? I think it’s probable that ABH changed their eyeshadow formula and/or rushed the release.

xoxo, Sarah

Beauty, Cosmetics, Hair, Makeup, Skin Care

July Favorites

My apologies for running a little late with this post, but better late than never right? See below for my July Favorites.

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Photo from Ulta

L’Oreal – Blow Dry It Quick Dry Primer Spray ($4.99 for 4.2 oz)

I love this priming spray from L’Oreal because it cuts my hair drying time in half. It contains Xylose 450 which is “a heat-resistant molecule that insulates the hair’s protective structure to withstand maximum hairstyling.” And did I mention that it costs less than $5?!

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Photo from the brand

Drunk Elephant – La La Retro Whipped Cream ($60 for 1.69 oz)

As mentioned in my previous review of the new Laura Mercier foundation, my skin has been going through a dry spell lately. I’ve been using this moisturizer both in the AM and PM. I like that this product is super creamy without feeling heavy or greasy.

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Photo from the brand

Pat McGrath MatteTrance Lipstick – 1995 ($38 for 0.14 oz)

I won’t go into much detail about this lipstick because I plan to do a full review soon. Let me just say that I’m completely obsessed with this warm light nude. I’ve purchased three lipsticks from this limited edition collection, but 1995 is probably my favorite. Pat McGrath never disappoints.

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Photo from the brand

Dior – Diorskin Airflash Spray Foundation ($62 for 2.3 oz)

I wear shade 100 Ivory, very light: neutral undertones. Is it expensive? Yes. Is it worth it? Absolutely. Out of the dozens of drugstore and luxury foundations that I’ve tried, Dior products seem to work best for my combination skin. This foundation is lightweight with buildable coverage. You can customize your coverage by choosing to apply straight from the can for a lighter finish, or with a kabuki brush for fuller coverage. I prefer the latter. This magic potion makes my skin look flawless. I even grant it holy grail status.

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Photo from Ulta

L’Oreal – Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Normal/Dry Skin ($9.99 for 13.5 oz)

As I’ve previously mentioned, I got hooked on Bioderma Micellar Water while traveling abroad last summer. Unfortunately, since Bioderma is a French brand, it’s not always easy to find in the states. This L’Oreal Micellar Water is a great drugstore alternative.

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Photo from the brand

TATCHA – Luminous Dewy Skin Mist ($20 for 0.4 oz/$48 for 1.35 oz)

This skin mist from TATCHA can be used as a primer right before applying makeup “for flawless application and a dewy, glowing look.” It’s also fantastic for touch ups on the go to refresh skin. I purchased the smaller sized bottle for testing purposes, but I will be splurging on the full-size once I run out. The smaller bottle would be perfect for travel or to throw in your purse.

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Photo from the brand

The Ordinary – AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution ($7.20 for 30 ml) – This solution containing Alpha hydroxyl acids (AHA) and Beta hydroxyl acids (BHA) treatment has done wonders for my skin. I use it once a week for 10 minutes to exfoliate and my skin looks and feels amazing afterwards! This formula also contains Tasmanian Pepperberry derivative to reduce irritation, a crosspolymer form of hyaluronic acid for comfort, Vitamin B5 to assist healing and black carrot as an antioxidant. NOTE: The Ordinary advises against using this product if you have sensitive skin.

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Photo from the brand

Sugarpill Cosmetics – Diamond Eyes Pressed Eyeshadow ($13 for 0.12 oz)

I’m a big fan of Sugarpill’s eyeshadows. I love that they use bold, out of the ordinary hues. They’re always highly pigmented and of the utmost quality. Diamond Eyes is described as a “satin white with crystalline sheen.” This has been my favorite inner corner/brownbone highlight as of lately. It also doubles as a highlighter. Sugarpill’s loose pigments are also awesome. NOTE: I purchased this eyeshadow for half off at Ricky’s recently. It’s listed as sold out on the Sugarpill website, so it might be being discontinued. Pick it up while you still can!

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Photo from the brand

Parian Spirit Brush Cleaner (4 oz for $10)

I use this professional brush cleaner to spot clean my brushes after daily use. It cleans, conditions and disinfects. Unlike many other brush cleaners that smell strongly of chemicals, this one has a pleasant citrus scent. Also, it’s environmentally friendly and available in a variety of sizes. The spray bottle nozzle comes in really handy.

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Photo from Ulta

L’Oreal Paris Infallible Pro-Matte 24HR Foundation – ($12.99 for 1.0 oz)

This is my current favorite full coverage foundation from the drugstore. I wear the shade Classic Ivory 101. It has a demi-matte finish. I like that it provides the coverage that I need without feeling cakey or heavy. I don’t suggest wearing foundation for 24 hours straight, but it does last throughout the work day. TIP: Set this foundation with loose powder after application and before applying other products such as bronzer, blush, etc.  for best performance.

What products have you been loving lately?

xoxo, Sarah

Beauty, Cosmetics, Makeup

Huge Drugstore Haul (Part 5) NEW! L’Oreal Infallible Lip Paints (Matte & Metallic)

The original L’Oreal Imfallible Lip Paints were one of my favorite new products of Spring 2017. Therefore, I was very excited to try out the new matte and metallic formulations released this summer. L’Oreal also launched a matte metallic hybrid which I haven’t seen in stores yet. I love the applicator of these lippies because it’s super easy to use.

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(From left to right: Skinny DipTongue Tied, Festival, Cinna-Bomb and Velvet Pout. Not pictured: Peach Pit)

Photo from the brand

L’Oreal Infallible Lip Paints Matte ($9.99 for 0.27 fl oz)

Smooth Matte Coverage. High Impact Color. Full Coverage. Comfortable wear. Lacquer up lips in high impact matte lip color with L’Oreal Paris Infallible Paints/Lips Matte. In one stroke, the designer applicator precisely diffuses vibrant-full-coverage matte lipstick to lips for comfortable wear. Available in 6 high-impact infallible matte liquid lipstick colors. 

This range is available in some really beautiful neutral colors. I purchased the shades Skinny Dip (a light nude), Peach Pit (a peachy nude) and Cinna-bomb (a vampy, dark burgundy brown). The lipsticks do dry down matte but they’re crumbly and just don’t wear well at all. Peach Pit overly emphasized the lines on my lips. I’d definitely advise exfoliating your lips before application. If you’re looking for a budget friendly matte liquid lipstick, then check out the Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Lipsticks or Maybelline Matte Ink Lipsticks that I’ve reviewed in recent haul posts. The Infallible Paints Matte are a pass for me.

See swatches below:

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(From left to right: Cinna-bombPeach Pit and Skinny Dip)

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(From left to right: Liquid Venom, Chrome Cherries, Studded, Moon Lust, Galactic Foil and Smoldering Eclipse)

Photo from the brand

L’Oreal Infallible Lip Paints Metallic ($9.99 for 0.27 oz)

Glossy Metallic Finish. High Impact Color. Full Coverage. Metallic Liquid Lipstick. Comfortable Wear. Lacquer up lips in high impact liquid metals to get on-trend metallic lip looks. In one stroke, the designer applicator precisely diffuses vibrant full-coverage metallic lipsticks to lips for comfortable wear. Available in 4 high-impact liquid metallic colors. 

Like the original Infallible Lip Paints, these metallic shades do not dry down completely. These lipsticks are available in six shades, two of which are exclusive to Ulta. I own them all except for the darkest shade, Smoldering Eclipse. (And I think I’m going to pick that one up too!) These are really solid metallic lipsticks. They’re highly pigmented and comfortable to wear. The shade Moon Lust is supposedly a close dupe for the Smashbox Be Legendary Liquid Metal Lipstick in Mauve Squad at a fraction of the price. I would recommend trying these out if you’re into the metallic trend. My personal favorite shades are Moon Lust, Galactic Foil and Chrome Cherries. 

See swatches below:

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(From left to right: Liquid Venom, Chrome Cherries, Studded, Galactic Foil and Moon Lust)

Please like this post if you enjoy drugstore hauls!

xoxo, Sarah

Beauty, Cosmetics, Makeup

NEW! LORAC Unzipped Ocean Sunset Palette

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Photo from the brand

LORAC just launched the limited edition Los Angeles Unzipped Sunset Series which includes the Ocean, Desert and Mountain Sunset Palettes. Today, I will be reviewing the Ocean Sunset Palette.

Beautiful landscape in L.A. means stunning sunsets all year long! We are chasing the sun with the LORAC Los Angeles Unzipped Sunset Series. With the Unzipped Ocean Palette, embrace the call of the sea through richly hued shades inspired by sea-foamy shores, majestic sunsets, and the alluring mysteries of the deep. Ready for a swim in the surf?

These palettes retail for $42 for 0.39 oz of product on the Ulta website. There are ten brand new eyeshadows in each palette, inspired by the ocean, desert or mountains respectively.

The Ocean Sunset Palette features the following shades:

  • Mother of Pearl – Shimmery rose gold
  • Salt Water – Sea foam green
  • Ocean Floor – Bronze
  • Horizon – Light orange
  • Sea Urchin – Dark purple
  • High Tide – Dark mauve
  • Sundown – Light mauve
  • Sandbar – Golden
  • Bedrock – Light brown
  • Stingray – Midnight Blue

Like most LORAC eyeshadows, these shadows have a soft texture that can be a bit powdery. Other reviewers have said that the quality of this palette is somewhere in between the Pro Palettes and the original Unzipped Palette and I think this is pretty accurate. The eyeshadows in the original Unzipped Palette have a more buttery texture.

The shadows in the Ocean Sunset Palette perform best with an eyeshadow primer or base. Overall, they are nicely pigmented, smooth, buildable and blendable. The only shade that I had issues with is Salt Water which was one of the shades that attracted me to this palette in the first place. Unfortunately, it’s not as pigmented as I had hoped. It’s semi-sheer with a sparkly finish, but can be built up using a dampened brush or tacky base.

My personal favorite shades in the palette are the mauves and metallics which are Sundown, High Tide, Ocean Floor and Sandbar. Horizon can be used as a transition shade. Bedrock looks lovely blown out in the crease. Sea Urchin and Stingray are the perfect shades for a smoky eye. Mother of Pearl is a beautiful browbone highlight and inner corner shade.

The packaging is cardboard with a metallic sunset design and lettering on the front cover. It opens up by a flap on the right bottom corner. Although the presentation is stunning, the cardboard is a little flimsy. I don’t think this palette would be ideal for travel. Also, I really wish that LORAC had included a mirror.

See swatches below. As usual, I did not use primer:

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(From left to right: StingrayHigh Tide, Sandbar, Sundown, Bedrock, Sea Urchin, Horizon, Salt Water and Mother of Pearl)

Final thoughts: I really like this palette. The shade selection is well curated and the shadows perform well. I appreciate that LORAC has incorporated some unique shades that we don’t see in every palette. Next, I will be reviewing the Desert Sunset Palette, followed by the Mountain Sunset Palette as soon as I can get my hands on it. I grade the LORAC Ocean Sunset Palette an A.

Will you be buying any palettes from the Unzipped Sunset Series?

xoxo, Sarah

Beauty, Cosmetics, Makeup

SNEAK PEEK! Victoria Beckham x Estée Lauder Capsule Makeup Collection (Part 2)

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Photos from the brand

Time to start saving! Victoria Beckham has announced that her second capsule makeup collection with Estée Lauder will be available for purchase on September 1 from her website, Dover Street and Hong Kong Stores. And if the last collection was any indication, it will go quickly! This collection is limited edition.

I went kind of crazy over the first collection. I bought everything except for the Morning Aura Illuminating Creme. Beckham says that “the range includes new products and exclusive, signature pieces.” I love that she’s a fellow makeup junkie who is involved in every step of the process.

I’m particularly excited about the eyeshadow quad and duo. It looks like she will be releasing another Eye Metal. What could be in that gorgeous gold compact? Perhaps another highlighter? Is that a mascara I see? Only time will tell!

Will you be splurging on the VB x  Estée Lauder Collection?

xoxo, Sarah