Primer Primer (BFF Guest Post)

Daydreaming of being on this beach with a good book and a good drink.

Happy Saturday, Dolls! Sorry for the slacking, I’ve been studying my butt off for a test I had and working on some projects. Here’s a guest post by my beautiful best friend, Shannon. Enjoy!

Primer Primer

Ok, so textbooks aren’t called ‘primers’ anymore (and this post is far from a textbook) but it made for a nice title. Don’t judge.

I’ve got two primers to review today: a save and a splurge.

SAVE: I ordered e.l.f.’s mineral primer about six weeks ago because Miss Vanessa turned me on to their super affordable products and I thought, “Why not? It’s $3.” When I first used it, the pump wasn’t very forgiving so the product shot all over my hand. And surprisingly, it was runny not creamy like other primers I’ve used.

Click the picture to purchase.

Once I got the primer off my hand and onto my face, it felt slick and oily, and took a while to rub in and absorb (probably because one full pump is entirely too much primer for one face). But when it was rubbed in, it left a powdery-feeling finish. Very clean, very even. After a few uses, the pump became a little worn-in and I could better control how much primer was actually dispensed. By using less, it didn’t feel as oily as the first use and I fell in love.

Fast forward three weeks and I run out of primer. With no warning. The pump just kind of spurted the remaining primer onto my fingers tips and that was it. Less than a month’s worth of use.

Overall, I like e.l.f.’s product. It gave an even base and didn’t cause any break outs. It really did give results that Smashbox’s photo finish primer gives, but my mini tube of Smashbox lasted much longer than three weeks.

I would recommend e.l.f.’s mineral primer – it’s inexpensive, it works, but you’ll be making quite a few trips to the store/internet.

SPLURGE: Fortunately, I wasn’t out of primer for long. Shortly after running out, I made a trip to Sephora to pick up MUFE Matte Velvet foundation (that Vanessa also recommended). My rewards card with them gave me the opportunity to pick a freebie and one option was Dr. Brandt’s Pore-No-More Anti-aging Mattefying Lotion. I grabbed it thinking, “Anti-aging? Might as well be pro-active…”

Click the picture to purchase.

It’s AWESOME. Just a little goes a long way – it’s more creamy than e.l.f.’s primer without being oily or heavy. I’ve really noticed that it reduced the appearance of my pores. AND it also reduces fine lines and wrinkles! It gives a great, clean-feeling finish and a great base for make-up. I LOVE it! However, it runs $60 a 1.7 oz. tube. …yikes.

I would recommend Dr. Brandt’s mattefying lotion – if you have money to burn. It’s lasted me longer than three weeks, but I haven’t used it everyday.

<3Shannon

E.l.f. Cream Eyeliner Review

Photobucket My niece, Elizabeth, enjoying a tostada lol. She hasn’t quite mastered the art of eating like a lady.

Hello Dolls!
Happy Saturday! I slept for a glorious 11 hours last night and feel amazing :-D. If you’ve been reading my blog, you know that I love e.l.f. brand brushes because of their great quality and budget friendly prices. I picked up one of the cream eyeliners in purple at Target the other day to try out and I’m in love again! The packaging is really cute and the liner comes with a little brush that’s surprisingly good quality. The consistency is really smooth and creamy, almost like a gel; it glides on easily and is nicely pigmented.
One thing that I always check for with liquid/gel liners is their water resistance (I’m a crybaby lol). I swatched the liner on my wrist and let it dry for 5 minutes before I tried washing it off with just water; it didn’t budge, even with rubbing. I was able to take it off with face soap and warm water. For $3, you can’t really go wrong with these, I can’t wait to get all of the other colors. You can find the liners at Target and at the e.l.f. website.

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Have you tried these liners? If so, what did you think of them?

Have an awesome weekend!

<3V

Amazing $3 Makeup Brushes!

Photobucket Ahhh…just a reminder of the warmth that will be here soon enough!

Hi Lovelies,

How are all of you doing today? I’m at work on my lunch break trying to get some blogging in. I was so excited about the brushes below, I couldn’t wait to tell you all about them! Back in December, e.l.f. had a sale for 50% off of their studio items and I picked up some brushes to give them a try. My expectations weren’t that high, because I didn’t think $3 would be getting me much. I was so wrong! Their studio brushes are really good quality and I can’t wait to get more as backups. Check out the reviews below:

The Stippling/Duo Fiber Brush:

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I know a lot of bloggers and makeup artists have used stippling/duo fiber brushes to apply foundation, but I didn’t really want to use my MAC brush on a liquid…I was worried about ruining it (it was the first quality makeup brush I bought and I have an attachment to it lol). I figured I could finally give the technique a try with my new e.l.f. brush this past weekend. OMG, I don’t think I can ever go back to applying foundation with a sponge or my fingers. The brush was so soft and it picked up just the right amount of foundation and applied the liquid perfectly; I had no blotchiness or caking, it felt like the foundation had been melted perfectly into my skin (I’ve tried it with the MUFE Matt Velvet + and Revlon’s Colorstay foundation). The brush didn’t lose any of it’s bristles and it cleaned up with no problem The brush is currently sold out on e.l.f.’s website, but you can find them at Target too. A+ rating for this one!

The Powder Brush:

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The powder brush really impressed me as well! I used this to buff in my Mineralize Skinfinish Natural from MAC and loooooooved the finish. The powder was buffed in so well that there was no powdery look to my skin, it just looked flawless and airbrushed. The results are amazing over foundation or just my skin after moisturizer. The brush also works with blush, it blended the color so there was no harsh line or powdery finish. The bristles on this are very soft, but packed together really well so there wasn’t fallout. It is currently available online and at Target. A++ rating for this brush because it’s really versatile and made my skin look absolutely flawless.

I’m so excited about these brushes, I hope all of you get to try them (for $3 each, how could you not?!). I’ll be ordering a couple of backups for each for myself and for client makeup.

Have you tried the e.l.f. studio brushes? What did you think of them?

Have a great day dolls, we’ve almost reached Friday!

<3V

Haulage!

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Hello Lovelies :-),

How is your December moving along? This month is always very crazy and very expensive for me, thank goodness for saving up!
E.l.f. had a 50% off sale for their Studio stuff and I picked up a few things because it was a great deal (I keep telling myself that). As soon as I had placed my order, I received a $15 gift card from Sephora and OF COURSE had to pick some stuff up there because…because I felt like it lol. My Sephora is in the mall and so I got sucked into picking up a few other things as well. Lets just say that my wallet was whimpering by the end of the day. Here are the goodies:

Photobucket The E.l.f. order as a whole. Pardon my bed sheets, it was too cloudy and cold outside to take pictures in better lighting. Items here: 32 piece eye palette, concealer palettes in Light and medium, HD powder, Gotta Glow blush, and two eye brushes from the Studio collection.

Closeup/Swatch of Gotta Glow:
PhotobucketPhotobucket A perfect dupe for NARS Albatross, except this is only $3 regularly. Amazing color, finely milled, and long lasting. Creates an amazing glow.

The Brushes:
Photobucket “C” brush and Contour brush. Normally $3 each.

Concealer Palettes:
PhotobucketPhotobucket Light and Medium, normally $3 each. The concealers are light to medium coverage with a creamy and easy to blend formula. They lasted about 8 hours on me without creasing or caking.

High Definition Powder:
Photobucket Normally $6. Will post a review soon :-).

32 piece eye palette:
Photobucket Normally $10. I picked this up for my sister.

All Over Color Stick in Golden Peach $1:
PhotobucketPhotobucket This wasn’t part of the online order, my bf picked it up for me randomly at Target and I looove the color :-D.

Mall Haul:

MUFE Mat Velvet+
Photobucket $34 at Sephora, I use shade 20…aka “glow in the dark.”

Smith’s Rosebud Salve in a squeezy tube!
Photobucket I was so excited about this! I love the stuff and it’s soo much less messy in a tube. $6 at Sephora.

Black Poppy Nail Polish from PacSun:
Photobucket It doesn’t have a color name or number, but it’s $3.50 and I’ve seen it at 3 stores so far. I’m sure you can find it at your local store. This was two coats.

Express Top:
Photobucket I got this on sale for $15.99. I’m going to belt it and wear it with skinny jeans and heels :-).

Have you done any shopping for yourself lately?

<3V

Guest Review by my BFF, Shannon!

Hi Dolls,
My best friend was kind enough to do a review on her favorite foundation. Happy Friday! :-).

Photobucket Shan at a Mustachio Bashio last year :-D.

Hi all! This is Shannon, Vanessa’s BFF who often takes advantage of her make-up skills. V asked me to do a guest review for her blog so I thought I’d give it a try.

I don’t like spending a lot of money on makeup. One, because 99% of the time I only use my go-to products so any extra items would go unused and two, I’d rather use it on happy hour or new clothes. But when you run out of a basic product, you HAVE to replace it. That’s how I came upon Almay’s Smart Shade Foundation.

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I ran out of my previous foundation and the CVS I shop at didn’t have my shade. So, after spending about 10 minutes trying to find a shade that worked (for a price I was willing to pay), I saw the Smart Shade. It was about $10 but it was coupled with a Smart Shade Blush (which alone sells for an additional $10). I was skeptical about how ‘smart’ the foundation actually was but I bought it anyway figuring it would probably match my skin color better than the $6-$8 foundations I had to choose from (and the back of my hand was covered in about 20 different shades already).

I used the Smart Shade Balancing in Light Medium. It starts out beige-y/white on your finger and darkens as you blend. (It’s really weird to see and I still haven’t figured out how it works exactly.) The foundation has a thin consistency, giving it a light finish. It evens your skin tone and covers small blemishes/shadows pretty well. There’s also really no scent to it, so that’s nice. The balancing formula works pretty well on my oily skin. My skin still gets oily, but I’m usually the only one to notice because I can feel it. The foundation prevents my face from looking slick/sweaty/shiny from the oil.

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Photobucket The foundation before blending.

The blush that was paired with the foundation (in shade 020) worked the same way – starts out pink and blends into your skin/foundation. The blush is thicker than the foundation but doesn’t feel much heavier. The application of this is kind of a science – too much and your entire cheek is pink, too little and it blends completely in and becomes hardly noticeable. But I like natural-looking makeup for my everyday use and this is just the right amount of pink/color without looking too dramatic.

PhotobucketPhotobucketThe blush before blending.

Photobucket The finished look.

I’ve used the foundation just about every day for the past 3 months and am just starting to get to a point where I need to replace it – so I figure $10 for 3 months worth of product is a good deal. (I bought a replacement foundation – Almay Pure Blends – and it was paired with a mascara. Score!)

I would recommend the Almay Smart Shade line to anyone who hates trying to find the right shade of foundation and who doesn’t want to break the bank.

Foundation: 5/5 Blush: 4/5

Products used:
-Almay Smart Shade Balancing foundation in Light Medium
-Almay Smart Shade Blush in 020
-Physician’s Formula bronzer in Moonlight
-Covergirl eyeshadow trio in Shimmering Sands
-Maybelline Define-a-line eyeliner
-Maybelline Define-a-lash mascara
-Covergirl Invisible concealer

❤ Shannon

P.S. This is Shan’s artwork, it’s us clubbing lol. I love her!
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I’m back!….and Reviewing!

Photobucket My awesome friend Katie and I at a Lady Gaga Party :-).

I’m so so very sorry for being away for so long for those few of you that read my blog! I had an odd couple of months and I didn’t have time for anything…and being so busy left me tired and uninspired, but I feel a million times better and I’m ready to do this again!

I picked up Revlon’s Colorstay liquid foundation for $1.99 on clearance at my grocery store (random, right?) only because it was $1.99, LOL. They had one bottle left in my color, 150 Buff, so I brought it home and gave it a shot.

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The last few weeks have been insanely hot here in Southern California, and my makeup is usually gone halfway through the day. I tried this on Saturday and loved the creamy texture; the perfume smell was a little strong, so caution to those with sensitive noses :-). After dusting my Mineralize Skinfinish powder over it, my skin looked flawless and like porcelain. This foundation held up through shopping all day and then a walk outside in 104 degree weather. I wore the foundation for two days without a problem and I was so excited ($1.99!!)….and then Monday came around and smashed my dreams.

If you’ve read my review on MakeUp Forever’s Matt Velvet+, you know that most foundations and my skin hate each other with a passion; Colorstay was in love with my skin for two days and then the honeymoon was over. I checked my skin at the end of Monday night and saw about 20 tiny little bumps on my cheeks…another foundation/skin relationship gone wrong.

I’m going to keep the foundation and use it for special occasions, because it seems to photograph really well, but it wont be my go-to like the MUFE foundation.

Rating: 3/5.

Have you had any bad experiences with foundation?

<3V

Makeup Forever Mat Velvet+…My New Love!


I think I may have to use the massage gift card the bf gave me…

Hello Pretty Readers!

It’s my Friday because I have the day off of work tomorrow; not for fun reasons, but because I have my annual dentist and doctors appointments, boo! I’ll be at the dentist at 7:30 am…so not looking forward to it. How has your week been?

On to the subject of today’s post!
……..…….
Makeup Forever Mat Velvet+. $34 at Sephora.

On my way to starting this blog, I read a ton of beauty blogs by other people, one of my faves being Tiffany’s. She’s so cute and stylish, and just awesome! Anyway, she does videos on her favorite products every month in which I heard about Makeup For Ever’s Mat Velvet+ foundation. Tiffany said she had used this during the time she was using Proactive to treat acne and that she hadn’t had any issues with it making her break out more.
My adventures in the world of liquid foundations have been interesting and every one has been a learning experience. I LOVE MAC products and use their powders and eye shadows more than any other…but their liquid foundations and my face can’t seem to get along; every time I use them, my face gets freaked out and starts breaking out like crazy. I’ve used drugstore foundations, Bare Essentuals, Estee Lauder, and Smashbox…if they didn’t break me out, they would oxidize and turn a weird orange color on my skin after a few hours.
After many failed attempts, I just gave up on liquid face makeup and stayed with MAC’s Mineralize Skinfinish Natural and studio fix/studio sculpt concealer. Well, I noticed that when I do heavy/dark/very bright eye makeup, I need a little more coverage on my face to balance them out. I gave in and went into Sephora for one more try with MUFE’s Mat Velvet +. The sales associate was really nice and helpful, taking 15-20 mins to match me and make sure I liked it and off I went.
I’ve used this foundation every day for a month and LOVED it. I’ve never used one that blended in so fast and that felt so light on my skin. Here are some notes for your reference:

Loved:
-The shade selection is awesome! (Always hang on to your receipt though, just in case you don’t like the color once you get home. Sephora’s return policy is great).
-It didn’t sink into my pores or oxidize.
-It stayed put all day, I just touched it up with my Mineralize Skinfinish powder when I left work at 5
-Controlled shine (I usually have to blot my face 3 times during work, I only had to do it once when using this foundation).
-The coverage is good, but doesn’t feel heavy and doesn’t look caked on.
-Applies really well with your fingers, a sponge, or a foundation brush. *Remember to wash your hands before if blending with your fingers*.
-Only a tiny amount (about the size of a regular m&m) is needed to cover my whole face.
-No strong odor.
-I didn’t break out!

Didn’t Love:
The price, $34. Even though I use a tiny amount each application, it still hurts to pay that much for foundation. I’m stingy about certain makeup items…maybe because I’ve had back luck with foundations before lol.

FYI-
As soon as you start blending, it goes from a liquid to almost a powder.
If you use a makeup brush, it will take more foundation than if you blend with your fingers.

I will definitely purchase this foundation again, I can’t imagine not having it now!

What’s your favorite foundation?

<3V