Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Genuine Glow Highlighting Creme for Face and Eyes in Bare Blush

Disclaimer: I purchased this.
This is a product that seems to be flying under the radar, as I really have not seen much posted about it. Which is a shame, because Estee Lauder's Genuine Glow Highlighting Creme ($20) is quite lovely!
Available in three shades, Gleam Glow, Sweetest Thing, and Bare Blush, I opted for Bare Blush as it seemed the lightest option of the three. Online swatches were few and far between so it was really a toss up, but fortunately Bare Blush has not left me disappointed. These twist up cream pens are touted as a "highlighting wash of color", and Bare Blush has a slight pink undertone with just enough icy shimmer to give it impact without looking frosty or metallic when blended out on the skin.
The applicator is a twist up pen with a soft cushion on the end. I find the size of the cushion is just right if I want to touch it to the corner of my eyes, as it will leave a small dot of the cream that I then tap on with my fingers. I also tap it along the tops of my cheeks, down the bridge of my nose, on my brow, and on my cupid's bow to highlight all the usual places. It does not interfere with my foundation and using my fingers to smooth it out has given me the best results.
God knows I did not need another highlighter, but I'm happy to have this in my collection. It has a 4.8 out of 5 star rating on the Lauder site, and I think it's definitely a hidden gem if you don't mind a click pen applicator. Fortunately, this one is working well to date, as I don't have a problem with product gushing out.
I'd say the biggest drawback is that you are getting a mere .11 ounces for your $20, but the amount I use is also quite small, so I would imagine this will last me quite some time.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Countdown to Gorgeous Day 6: Allspice and FOTD

Disclaimer: I purchased this. Links are to previous reviews.
I overslept this morning and was consequently rushed trying to make it to my first meeting of the day. Don't you hate that? My whole morning routine (which usually begins with drinking coffee in bed, checking email, and snuggling with the dogs) was consequently thrown off.  So, today's message of "Be cozy" was a bit lost on me, especially when I was outside trying to wrangle my errant dogs from barking at the neighbors boys, who were shooting hoops at 7:25 am.
Behind the "Be cozy" door is the loose eye shadow "Allspice", which is a shimmery copper brown. I was able to throw together an easy eye look using Allspice over the lid up to the crease, where I then applied Kat Von D's Oak and Fringe from the MetalMatte palette in the crease.
Champagne Pop rounded out the trifecta by providing some inner eye shimmer. I tight lined my eyes with Julep's Blackest Black. It came out a bit grungey because I was rushed, but let's say it was deliberate.
Foundation is the It Cosmetics CC+ Cream, which I am really growing to like. I set it with the Tinted Mineral Veil, and I noticed last night that it was still largely intact after a 9 hour day. Blush is the bareMinerals Natural Passion with a light dusting of Tropical Sunset on top. I filled in my brows with Inika's Blonde brow pencil, which I have on my Project Pan list and am trying to finish off. I'm wearing a very light application of nyx's Ibiza on my lips.
I had no time to force my bed head into submission beyond wetting the back and slapping on a barrette. Figures that today was back to back meetings whereas some days I sit in my office and see practically no one.
I'm off to pick up my car! Here's hoping they properly diagnosed the EPC light problem (crankshaft), as it was not giving them any codes to go by. 

Monday, December 5, 2016

Countdown to Gorgeous Days 4 and 5: Mineral Veil and Lash Domination with FOTD's

Disclaimer: I purchased this. All links are to past reviews.
I'm enjoying the little sayings on each of the doors to the Countdown to Gorgeous advent calendar by bareMinerals. Nothing wrong with starting off each day with a simple positive affirmation plus a makeup treat!
Day 4's offering is the Tinted Mineral Veil. I just finished one of these, although the one I had was lighter in color, so was probable the original or hydrating version. The Tinted Mineral Veil is supposed to add a subtle hint of color, and I do think it warms my skin up a bit. I emptied more than I was intending on the palette below.
Tinted Veil on left
I don't always wear makeup on the weekends, but I had the heating/cooling technician scheduled to come by on Sunday plus needed to make a run to Costco, so I decided some effort was in order. I went for a natural/neutral look using the Lauren Brooke Cosmetiques Creme Foundation in Neutral 30 with the Tinted Mineral Veil as my setting powder.
For eyes I used the Color Tattoo Creamy Beige underneath ColourPop's Smash, with BECCA's Champagne Pop for the middle of the lid shimmer/inner eye highlighter. I've been tightlining with Lancome's Black Coffee Le Crayon Khol Smoky Eyeliner.
Rose Spritz Luminous Blush
For blush I used the bareMineral's Natural Passion cream blush (I've hit major pan!), with a light dusting of Rose Spritz Luminous Blush from the BECCA + Jaclyn Hill Champagne Face Palette.
On my lips is Nude Passion from Day 3 of Countdown to Gorgeous. It was like pea soup outside and my camera kept fogging up, but I managed to get one decent picture. My heater is also now working - apparently it needed configuring/some type of code from the technician. My car is still in the shop, so one down and one to go.
Behind Day 5's door is a mini-sized Lash Domination mascara. I remember trying this a while back and not being overly impressed, but sometimes second impressions are different.
I remembered the wand being a little bit scary with all its spikes, which do a decent job of separating and combing through lashes. Since I used Estee Lauder's Little Brick Primer prior to applying the mascara, the spikes tended to grab a bit more, but nothing too bad.  I'm just "eh" about Lash Domination, although I will continue to use up this sample.
Day 5's makeup featured the It Cosmetic's CC+ Cream as my foundation, topped with the Tinted Mineral Veil.  For eyes I used Color Tattoo's Nude Compliment as a base shade and Kat Von D's dark brown Oak and tan Suede from the MetalMatte palette in the crease/outer V.
Buxom's Mink Magnet provides the shimmer in the middle of the lid, with a Le Metier de Beaute cream shimmer shadow as my inner eye highlight. Lancome's Black Coffee has been my liner of choice for the last few weeks. I like how this turned out.
Blush is Natural Passion again, this time lightly dusted with Laura Geller's matte Bosenberry. Now that I've hit pan on Natural Passion, it makes me want to use it all up!
I've got Nude Passion on my lips with Trail Blazer in the middle for a pop of shine/shimmer. I really like both of these for a peachy nude lip.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Countdown to Gorgeous Day 3: Nude Passion

One of the reasons the Countdown to Gorgeous advent calendar interested me was because of the Pop of Passion Lip-Oil Balms. I'd previously received a deluxe sample of Plumberry and really liked it, so was interested in collecting a few more. Color me happy that Day 3 delivered for me.
Nude Passion is the lightest of the eight shades and gives a barely there wash of peachy tan. There is a fair amount of product in the deluxe sized samples, and I think Nude Passion will get plenty of use in the coming colder days.
My lips need constant balm or they are uncomfortable as hell, and the Pop of Passion balms contain jojoba, sunflower, and passion fruit seed oils to help keep them hydrated and soft.
Since this is not a high impact color and it was getting too dark for me to take pictures of my FOTD outside, I'll show you the eyeshadows I decided to wear with the lip balm. All links are to previous reviews.
I used the Color Tattoo in Caramel Cool as my base, with bareMinerals Mai Tai (top right) in the inner corner and BFTE's Woozer (bottom) on the rest of the lid up to the crease.
Some mattes were in order to define the crease and outer V, so I used Kat Von D's MetalMatte palette. I haven't reviewed MetalMatte yet and it looks to be out of stock now, but suffice it to say I love it. I combined the peachy Fringe and the dark brown Oak in the outer V/crease, and then used the deep gold Flash to brighten the middle of my lid.
The Heating/Cooling repair guy is coming out tomorrow (Sunday!) to trouble shoot my furnace, so hopefully I've have heat before we hit freezing temps on Friday. I made an appointment to service my car on Monday and apparently none to soon, as my EPC light came on this afternoon. When it rains, it pours. It does help to have little treats like this to look forward to.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Countdown to Gorgeous Day 2: Tropical Sunset and FOTD

Disclaimer: I purchased this. All links are to past reviews.
Day 2 of the Countdown to Gorgeous advent calendar by bareMinerals brings us a loose mineral powder blush called Tropical Sunset. It did not feel tropical in my house this morning so I decided it was time to turn on the heat, only to discover that my furnace did not want to cooperate. Joy. To. The. World.
I had my inside unit and air conditioner replaced in June, and I'm guessing something connected to the furnace is not operating correctly. Fortunately, the days are still hitting the upper 60's here in Mobile, so I will not freeze yet.

Tropical Sunset is actually a softer pink than you would think from looking at it in the container. It inspired me to pull out some of my loose shadows from bareMinerals, and I ended up using the dark peach Paradise (far right) and burnished brown Coconut Palm (middle) over Maybelline's Leather Color Tattoo in Creamy Beige.
As you can see, Creamy Beige is starting to dry out, but considering it's still over 2 years old and still usable, I've got no complaints. Except that it's limited edition and I can't get my hands on a new one.
For mascara I used Mally's Volumizing Mascara sample over Estee Lauder's Little Black Primer. The Mally's mascara is more wet than I care for and it tends to get a bit gloppy, both on the brush/tube and my lashes. Not really a fan.
I am a fan of my only Christmas mug, which was made by Design House Stockholm for Starbucks, circa 2008.
For foundation I chose It Cosmetic's CC+ Color Correcting Full Coverage Cream, which was a 100 point perk from Sephora if I'm not mistaken. The color match was pretty good and I'd say coverage is more medium than full. I initially used a large Mermaid brush to apply, but the cream tended to bunch up a bit, so I resorted to a damp Beauty Blender to smooth things out. I need to play with this a bit more, but initial impressions are positive.
For lips I went with Vincent Longo's Cupid's Breath to stain my lips, and then topped them with yesterday's Day 1 offering, Trail Blazer. I'm happy to report that the marvelous Moxie gloss formula agrees with my lips and I am enjoying it.
My highlighter of the day is Champagne Pop (bottom left) from the BECCA Champagne Collection Face Palette. After reading about how this palette is being released in other countries now that Estee Lauder purchased BECCA, I wouldn't be surprised if we see it again. The meaning of "limited-edition" is a moving target these days. I'm not complaining, just taking "limited-edition" releases with a grain of salt :-).

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Countdown to Gorgeous Advent Calendar by bareMinerals: Day 1

Disclaimer: I purchased this.
I bought the Countdown to Gorgeous ($79 with a $213 value) way back in October from bareMinerals with my 20% off birthday code, and I managed to save it so that I could truly use it as an advent calendar. It is actually my first time participating in this Christmas tradition, which apparently originated with German Lutherans in the 19th century. Let's take a moment to appreciate the pretty packaging. I used to rock climb in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and the cover of the box brings back those memories.
I typically watch YouTube beauty videos while I'm getting ready in the morning, and that's Casey Holmes in the background. Her makeup style is much more glam/dramatic than mine, but I enjoy her personality and how much she loves her dogs. Plus, she's from the south like me :-)
Advent calendars typically have 24 little doors with surprises behind each one, and you start on December 1st, opening one door each day until you finish on Christmas Eve. I made a point to not look at reviews or pictures of Countdown to Gorgeous so that I could be surprised, so let's see what I got on day 1!
Behind door #1 is the Marvelous Moxie gloss in Trail Blazer, which is a light peachy melon with shimmer. Perfect for the neutral FOTD I was constructing.
I lined my lips with Nudite from Le Metier de Beaute first, also filling in the lip except for the middle, which I left bare. I then used Trail Blazer in the middle of the lips for a pop of shine. I like how it turned out! The gloss has a cooling feel very similar to the Buxom glosses, which I happen to be a fan of.  This is a tacky gloss, which means it has longer staying power.  I find it moderately hydrating and comfortable to wear.
I'm going to try to post each day's treat along with the corresponding FOTD, but we will see how that goes. I've got good intentions, but life, you know....sometimes it gets in the way.
Other makeup used (links are to past reviews):
Foundation:  Peter Thomas Roth CC Cream in Light/Medium topped with Laura Geller's Balance-n-Brighten Color Correcting Foundation in Medium
Eye shadow: Maybelline's Color Tattoo Leather in Creamy Beige with Kevin Aucoin's Brighten, Starlight, Cool Tan, and Ruddy Earth from the Contour Book Vol II.
Mascara: The Little Black Primer by Estee Lauder and the Tarteist Lash Paint mascara
Blush/highlighter: Light dusting of Pamplemousse and Prosecco Pop from the Becca Champagne Collection Face Palette. Sephora surprisingly had a few of these on sale recently and I decided I better snatch it up this time. I like it.
Brows: Blonde Bombshell by Inika topped with Benefit's Gimme Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel in Light.
I look forward to seeing what is behind door #2 and am glad I saved opening Countdown to Gorgeous, although it did test my will power a few times. I saw more than a few interesting beauty related advent calendars this year, and I may have to invest in one going forward each year. Countdown to Gorgeous is still available from a variety of retailers (Ulta, Macy's, Nordstrom) if you want to join in on the fun.