Tag Archives: #elf

October: Sparkle or Dull?

My makeup peeps…..why are there so many new and fabulous products being released???? Seriously! There are so many that I want to try out for you guys!

This month I decided to review a purchase I had made while redeeming some points at Ulta earlier in the month, the Too Faced Grand Hotel Cafe boxed set, and a brand new item from the Elf line, the instant brow lift.

Let’s start by chatting about some brows!

PRODUCT #1: Elf Instant Brow Lift Pencil

This was one of those random finds as I was trolling around Target one day. You know those trips….the ones where you go in for one thing and end up leaving with a cart full of things you really didn’t need???

Anyway…..I have been toying around with changing up my eyebrow routine for awhile now because I have not been 100% satisfied with the Anastasia brow products I have been using. If we are being honest….quality eyebrow products seem to be expensive, so when it comes to me purchasing a new one I really try to do a lot of research and get friends’ opinions so I don’t waste my money. I mean….I know this blog is about determining if a product sparkles or if it is a little lackluster, but my hope is to always have more sparkles than dulls….a dull product means money down the drain!

I was leaning toward trying out a product from It Cosmetics and was actually en route to Ulta when I stopped to make the previously mentioned unnecessary Target stop. It proved to be a smart move on my end, because the new brow pencil from Elf had just been released and came across my line of sight. At $2.00, its price was very attractive, and since I have always had good experiences with the Elf line, I decided to give it a chance.

Let’s talk about brows for a second. Do you need a product? Not necessarily. I never used to use one. Then one day I had an eyebrow wax that left them looking a little wonky and uneven if I didn’t use a product. For me, the product is more about shaping my actual eyebrow as opposed to filling them in. Depending on your brow, you may do the same, or they may be thin and you may need to spruce them up a bit.

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A look at the product in action. 

FINAL VERDICT: SPARKLE!

For $2.00, I was extremely pleased with this product. It went on smoothly and was easy to use, kind of like a mechanical pencil. I also loved that it included a spoolie brush on the opposite end to help blend and mute the color if you got a little crazy. I definitely recommend this product, especially if you want to try something cheaper before moving on to a higher price brow product.

***I do need to state this. The one thing I wasn’t super pleased with when it came to this item was the fact that it only came in three colors. I used deep brown because of my coloring, but it also comes in a taupe and neutral brown. I’m not sure if this is just because it is newer, but hopefully they expand the palette soon…the taupe, which is the lightest of the three, may still be too dark for you if you have very blonde hair, and there aren’t any options for my ginger friends. Fingers crossed for you guys!

PRODUCT #2 Too Faced Grand Hotel Cafe Palette

If you follow me on Facebook you may have seen me unbox this purchase live after redeeming my Ultamate rewards points at Ulta. When I saw this product, I had to have it….they claimed the three palettes smelled like coffee, and you guys know me…..

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Look how cute the packaging is!

What all comes in this boxed set?

-3 palettes that include 6 eyeshadows each, as well as one blush: Peppermint Mocha (top), Gingerbread Coffee (bottom left), and Egg Nog Latte (bottom right).

-Deluxe size of Too Faced’s Better Than Sex Mascara aka best mascara in the damn land.

As you can see from the picture below, the color palettes are great for all people, as there are colors that compliment both warm and cool undertones. I personally love them all, however, I have been using the Gingerbread Latte more frequently for the eyeshadow colors than the other two. The blush in that palette, called Gingerbread, is great for contouring if you are a contour lover like me. I’ve been using it for that purpose, then using the blush from the Egg Nog palette over top of it. As with any Too Faced eye shadow, the colors are incredible and great quality…some with some shimmer, some with a matte finish…but all able to be blended beautifully.

When it comes to the mascara…this is the kind I use every day. I always put one layer of mascara on before applying my lashes, and with some lash styles actually apply a layer after to blend my lashes and the falsies together. It is great on its own for you non lash wearers!

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A look at what you get with the Grand Hotel Cafe box, photo courtesy of Sephora. 

Here’s a look at a basic eye that I did last week blending three colors from the Gingerbread palette on my eyes: Maple Syrup on the lid, Ginger Cream on the upper lid to blend, and Cup of Joe to smoke it out a bit. I used the Peach Cobbler blush from the Egg Nog palette. Absolutely love it!

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Love the simplicity of this look….add lashes and a bright lip to make the eyes pop. 

FINAL VERDICT: SPARKLE!

This boxed set is a great value…it is only $49, and you get a ton of great items with it. The only bad thing about this item…it is limited edition because it is seasonal, so if you want it get it asap!

Be on the lookout for great deals coming up at Ulta and Sephora….they always have awesome items that are great for gifts or stocking stuffers that surface this time of year!

sparkleon

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August: Sparkle or Dull?

Guys, can you believe it is September???? I’m having a hard time accepting that summer is over and before you know it Christmas will be here. This year is flying by!

And so is this month! We have been crazy busy with wedding stuff these past few weeks which delayed this blog being posted a bit more than I had anticipated, and this week we had a curveball thrown in with a death in our family. My apologies, makeup lovers!

This blog is all about the eyes!!!!

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PRODUCT #1: Tarte Colored Clay Under Eye Corrector

I think Tarte has an amazing line of products, but I have mostly stuck to their eyeshadow palettes and lipsticks. Since I have a pretty strong love affair with my Kat Von D foundation, I’ve never considered their foundations or concealers (I know…..I’m sorry!). I guess I’m one of those people who sticks with something that she knows works for her and doesn’t like to always change it up…especially with foundation and concealers.

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Shopping with Mikaele!

I recently took one of my coaches to Ulta because….well, that’s pretty much my second office….and she needed some lashes, so of course I volunteered to help her! During our trip and random perusal of the Tarte aisle I stumbled across this clay under eye corrector. Let’s be honest….I’ve been lacking in the sleep department big time lately and my under eye bags needed a little TLC. I tried the product out in the store and loved it immediately. It went on smoothly, felt like silk, and had great coverage. It was purchased immediately, and I can tell you….I am still amazed by this product. As you can see below, the coverage is pretty freaking awesome. Just an FYI, the color I use is Light/Medium.

FINAL VERDICT: SPARKLE ALL DAMN DAY!

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Product #2: Elf Under Eye Setting Powder

This was a product that I was skeptical about. We all know I think Elf has some awesome makeup products/brushes, but for some reason every time I was in the Elf section and saw this little guy I always talked myself out of it. Yeah, it is only $3, but do I really need a setting powder?????? For my eyes????

Earlier in the month I was creeping on a few different youtube tutorials trying to master a specific makeup technique and noticed that all four of the tutorials I randomly selected to watch featured the makeup artist using this Elf product. I told myself that was a sign and decided to give it a whirl.

The purpose of this powder is to do exactly what it says: set the makeup under your eye perfectly. It claimed to leave skin feeling silky and help blend fine lines. Skin also is strengthened because of the Vitamin K and Vitamin C blend in it.

I applied this as a final step, so foundation was on, concealer, eye makeup, etc. The brush I used was another Elf product, the Elf foundation brush. The product itself comes with a small brush, but I like this Elf one better. Even though it is a foundation brush, I hate using it for that and think this one is a better option.

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Few things about this product……

1. It looks a little shimmery when you look at it in its pot. It’s very subtle. I actually used this when strobing last week and liked the look because it wasn’t as in your face as normal strobing is.

2. With that being said, don’t OVERUSE it! A little can go a long way, and if you use too much you will have cakey under eyes and possibly too much shimmer. Once you get the product on the brush, tap it lightly to get rid of the excess. Remember, you can always add to it….it is much easier than having to take it off or looking like a gothic stripper.

FINAL VERDICT: Sparkle!

I’ve been having lots of luck with sparkle products lately! Are there any items you have been curious about? Let me know….I’m always up for ideas to help you make beauty easier!

sparkleon

 

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April Beauty Finds: Sparkle or Dull?

Ok, first of all……I know…I know. It is mid May, and I am just now posting my two product reviews for the month of April. Cut me some slack though….these first two weeks of May have been crazy busy since my husband and I closed on our house and started the moving in process (don’t worry, I’ll share more on that later).

I am fortunate to have a lot of really talented friends in the makeup industry, so I always enjoy chatting about new products with them. The two I am reviewing today are two that have come up quite frequently  in conversation lately and both have  been presented with mixed reviews. Some people love them, some hate them….it was time for me to see for myself.

Product #1: Elf Makeup Mist

For a long time I questioned whether or not I really needed a setting spray to hold my makeup in place. Honestly, I thought it would do absolutely nothing for my face and possibly ruin my makeup, so I avoided using it.

During one of my photo shoots the makeup artist I was using misted my makeup with a setting spray from Urban Decay and my eyes lit up…..we all know that Urban Decay is my #1. I loved how it helped my makeup stay in place longer and, in my opinion, really helped cut down on that shine that happens sometimes if you have a cute T-zone like I do. At $21.00 a bottle was this really worth it? In my opinion, no, so I skipped it. When it comes to spending money on makeup, I believe some items are worth the higher price tag; a setting spray is not one of them.

I am a huge lover of the brand ELF, which is sold at Target and Walmart stores, for many reasons. Not only is it affordable (products range from $1-$10 or so), but their products are pretty darn awesome for the price tag. The majority of my makeup brushes are from their black collection, and while I was at Target to grab a few new ones I happened to notice their makeup mist, an item that I had chatted with some friends about not long before. It was time to give this little $3 bottle a try to see how she stood up to that $21 Urban Decay spray I had fallen in love with.

It. Is. Fabulous.

For a misting spray, it is light and doesn’t knock me out when I spray. It dries pretty much immediately and I felt held my makeup just as well as the Urban Decay item did. The good thing about mists? You don’t need much, so for $3, this bottle can last you a long time, giving you many many days of long lasting flawless makeup. I also noticed that my T zone shine didn’t show up as soon either! Score!

FINAL VERDICT: SPARKLE!!!!!
Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 11.43.28 PMProduct #2: Kat Von D’s Shade + Light Eye Palette

Kat Von D won me over around the time of my wedding when I finally realized that her Lock It Foundation was the best thing around in the world of foundations. Prior to that I had not given her makeup a chance for reasons unknown.

I’m always a little worried about giving a new eye shadow palette a try because I rely so heavily on my loves from Urban Decay and Too Faced. This palette was one that some of my pals loved and some hated. I knew one thing: I was the first completely matte palette that I had stumbled across and considered, so what the heck…..let’s give it a shot.

I was pleasantly surprised! The colors in the palette are great basic shades, and if you are someone who loves a matte finish, this is the palette you want. The quality of the shadows is great, too….rich pigments that stay on and are great to blend.

For me, I don’t usually do all matte. I know someone out there in the makeup world will tell me that you shouldn’t do a shimmery eye after 30, but whatever. I make my own rules and love shimmer/glitter/sparkle……and I will for-ev-er (in a Sandlot voice). Lately I have been using this palette for the bulk of my eye, and then I add a little pop of shimmer from another palette depending on the look I am going for that day.

Here’s a quick tutorial on the colors I love best and how I use this palette for a fun low key look! Overall, I think this is a great palette to add to your collection. Check it out!

FINAL VERDICT: Sparkle!!!!

I love when products go two for two in the sparkle category!

sparkleon

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