November 7, 2014

Current Beauty Favorites, Edition #2!




Hey everyone! I've decided it's time for another installment of the 'Current Beauty Favorites' segment! If you missed the first one, it is here.

Basically, I'll just be telling you about a few beauty products that I'm currently loving/ relying upon/ rediscovering in my collection. These are fun posts for me to do, because writing positive reviews is always more enjoyable than detailing negative aspects of any product! Enjoy!


1. Harajuku Lovers G of The Sea by Gwen Stefani, 1oz
It's sort of poor timing to mention this fragrance because it really is a Summery one. I don't care though- I wear what I want when I want!

I'll admit that the uber-cute mermaid drew me in, but, happily, this smells great as well- and I'm picky about women's fragrances. According to Fragrantica, "the top notes are red apple, wild berries and water lily; middle notes are jasmine, freesia and peony; base notes are woodsy notes, amber and musk." It's a light, crisp scent that is clean without being overly "fresh" if you know what I mean. I probably like this because I like jasmine so much, and you can definitely pick out that note. I'm bad at scents, but I also think I can detect the wild berries. It's not too fruity, which I dislike, and not too floral, which I tend to dislike equally. Basically, it smells light and nicely balanced to me!

A drawback would be that, since it's an eau de toilette, it doesn't tend to linger on the skin for more than a couple of hours, and for that reason you might burn through this amount rapidly.


2. Nyx Butter Lip Balm in 'Brownie'
I have two other Butter Lip Balms by Nyx, but this one is far and away my favorite! The color is a slightly brown-toned mauve that reminds me a lot of the tones found in Zoya's Naturel Deux set or even the Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette. For me, this is a MLBB (my lips but better) shade. My lips are fairly pigmented, and this color is just sliiiiightly darker, and just makes my whole face look more polished somehow. Since it matches so well, I can apply it sloppily on the go, sans-mirror, and not have to worry about a thing! (Here's a nice review and swatches of this color from makeupandbeauty.com.)

These Butter Lip Balms are pretty pigmented for a tinted balm. The texture is wonderful- buttery, creamy, and super comfortable- and basically just feels like wearing a balm. I only have one Maybelline Baby Lips, but the Nyx Butter Lip Balms are infinitely superior, formula-wise, in my opinion. I can see myself actually using this tube up, and that, to me, is crazy since I have a hard time wearing colored lip products on the regular.


3. Sigma E60 Large Shader
I use this eyeshadow brush every single day. I almost forgot to include it in my favorites because it's such a routine, second-nature part of my day!

If you can't tell from the photo, it is actually really very large, like the name says. It can cover my whole lid easily, so I mostly use it for applying colors that go all over the lid, not detail placement. However, the fantastic thing about this brush is that when you rotate it on it's side it fits perfectly in the crease, and makes it so easy to blend out color there. So, if you're in a rush, this brush makes it really easy to use just one eyeshadow to create a look that appears to be way more complicated than it is. It's hard to explain in words!

Anyway, I love this brush so much I'm considering getting a couple more so that I can have one dedicated to light shadows, one to dark shadows, and one to shimmery shadows. Overkill much? I think not!


4. Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in 'Auburn'
I've used and enjoyed Brow Wiz for quite some time, but this eyebrow pencil made my list because this particular color was recently, quietly launched by Anastasia! I'm not sure when they released it, but ever since I've used Brow Wiz, I've bemoaned the fact that they didn't carry a dark auburn shade suitable for people with dark red or burgundy hair. Now they do- hoorah!

This pencil will vanish quickly if you use it to actually fill in your brows, so I only use it to create the initial outline, which then gets blended in. (I use a brow powder to do most of the filling.) People always rave about how fine-tipped this retractable pencil is, but I do feel like it could be even finer. That said, I don't know of any other brow pencil in this perfect warm auburn color, and the spoolie on this thing is wonderful as well. 


5. e.l.f  Professional Concealer Brush
I've finally come to the dark side, and begun to use acetone and this brush to clean up my cuticles like most other nail bloggers! Now, I don't do this for every manicure, or even most swatches, but I will do it now if my cuticle lines end up being reeeally janky.

This $1.00 brush is famed for being perfect for cuticle cleanup, and I am here to confirm that! The shape and stiffness of the bristles really makes it easy to propel acetone around the cuticle line and fix mistakes! I haven't used this for actual concealing, but for perfecting manicures, it's awesome!


6. Everyday Minerals Color Corrector in 'Mint,' .06oz
This is a loose mineral correcting powder in a light, minty green shade. Green cancels red, so this is meant to correct redness and bring the skin back to a more neutral tone. This powder works even better than this Physician's Formula pressed green powder I'd used in the past, and also better than any green liquid primer I've tried!

My redness problems are mild these days, but I wear this powder every day before my normal mineral base- or just alone- and I feel like it makes a big difference in how my skin looks, overall! My only real gripe is that this size is tiny, only .06oz, and Everyday Minerals doesn't offer a bigger one. Boo! Love this color corrector though!


7. L'Oreal Voluminous Butterfly Mascara in 'Black Brown'
The unconventional wand (picture here) drew me in, but I stayed for the awesome results this mascara gives my lashes! I have no mascara in recent memory that compares to this one, and I can't remember my lashes ever looking better!

The tapered wand is synthetic and has these sort of flared bristles on one end which are supposed to help curl and extend the outer eyelashes. You can also turn the brush over to use the shorter bristles on the back. I've heard people complain that the asymmetrical design makes it hard to do both eyes without switching hands, but I am a weirdo ambidextrous makeup applier who uses both hands equally when doing my eyes. The good news is that L'Oreal listened to consumers and released Voluminous Butterfly Intenza which is the same thing but with the flared bristles on BOTH sides, making it ideal for people who use their dominant hands for both eyes!

About the formula: it's on the drier side of things (my personal preference), and coats the lashes well without clumping. The combination of the wand + formula gives wonderful length, but the great thing is that this mascara layers on top of itself really, really nicely without clumping or looking spidery. So you can build it up easily for volume.

One drawback: Normally, this would be a deal-breaker for me, but I love this mascara enough that it's not. It flakes on me after about six hours. Flakes are a big no-no, since I have sensitive eyes, but I've found an easy way around this problem. If you just use a clear mascara on top (I've been using a deluxe sample of Anastasia Lash Genius recently), it'll seal everything in without disrupting anything, and prevent flaking hours later.


8. Sigma Warm Neutrals Eye Shadow Palette
I've been gravitating to the shadows in this palette quite a lot recently, and there's good reason. They are pigmented, creamy, and luxurious-feeling. But, more importantly, they blend so well. They are just a pleasure to use! (I also love how compact the packaging is.)

The color selection in this palette is my personal cup of tea. There are a lot of mauvey tones, and warm browns, as well as a couple of taupe-y colors. Most of the shadows here have shimmer (two have microglitter), but there are four mattes and they are strategically planned. There is a light bone color called Sugar Milk that is perfect for the inner corner or highlighting, a warm clay color called Cinnamon that is perfect to warm up the crease, a mauve called Innocent (one of my favorites) that is great for the lid, and a cooler-toned camel/ tan called Cozy that is also good on the lid or in the crease.

I also love Optimistic which is a darker rosy mauve with golden shimmer (can you see the dip?). The lightest pink, Oyster Sand, is also really cool since it has a duochromey quality. And, the deep brown in the corner, Warm Stone, is gorgeous!

These shadows are very soft (think Lorac), but don't tend to kick up a lot of dust in the pan or cause fallout on the face. They are pigmented with excellent color payoff. These are my first eyeshadows from Sigma, but I'll definitely be looking at more in the future!




That's it!  If you guys read any of that wall-o-text, props to you!




Thoughts?
Have you tried any of these products or something similar?

8 comments:

  1. That mermaid bottle is adorable! I didn't know NYX sold balms too, I need to look out for those. :)

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  2. I once bought one of Gwen Stefani's perfumes for the bottle too, haha. They're way too cute.

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  3. Great favorites you've been enjoying. I really need to give that elf concealer brush a try for cleanup since I'm always looking for a new cleanup brush to use.

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  4. They are relatively new, and pretty awesome I think!

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  5. It's so hard not to get drawn in to all of them, haha! That dang adorable factor. :3

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  6. You should! It's the perfect combination of cheap X effective! :)

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  7. That Eveyday Minerals powder sounds interesting, shame it's such a tiny pot though.

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  8. I will definitely repurchase it! It does seem like it's lasting a while, too.

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