The beginning of the year is always a good time to reflect and review the last year, and this year I wanted to start the habit of looking back at what I’ve purchased, used, and loved. I pulled out all the beauty products I have and complied a list of my favorites/most reached for. Here are the items I just can’t stop using in 2016 (in no particular order)!
- Too Faced Sweet Peach Eye Shadow Collection Palette
This palette has a lot of fun color that is not traditional for me, but for some reason I love using it. It has enough neutrals if you want something simple, but lots of fun colors if you’re feeling like adding some pops of colors. I also love the peach scent (I know that’s a hit or miss with people). It was a limited addition that lauchend earlier last year, but they re-released it with a bunch of other peach themed items at the end of 2016, so if you wanted to try one but couldn’t get your hands on them the first time around, make sure to check them out now!
- Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion in Anti Aging
I’ve been a loyal follower of the Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer. I have not venture out a lot when it comes to eyeshadow primer, but of the ones I’ve tried, this one works best for me, and if it aint broken, why fix it?
- Buxom Lash Waterproof Mascara
This one was recommended to me by my coworker. I love the formular and the wand is really easy to use. I’m not very picky when it comes to mascara but most of them smudge on my bottom lash line (even some waterproof ones), so when I found this one I was extremely happy.
- Glossier (everything)
Glossier is definitely the standout beauty brand for me in 2016, I was a little slow to try out their initial line of items because I already had things that serve the same purpose in my collection. My first encounter with them is the Boy Brow and Generation G, I have not touch any other brow gel since I got my hands on the Boy Brow, and although the first iteration of Generation G was not a big hit for me, I love the newly reformulated version that they came out with later on in 2016! I’m not a big fan of foundation because I just don’t like the way they feel on my face, but when I started using the Perfecting Skin Tint I was hooked. I never used to like putting on foundation on a daily bases but now the Perfecting Skin Tint is my go to everyday base! It’s so easy to apply and feels pretty much invisible on my face, and helps even out my skin tone so effortlessly. When they came out with the Stretch Concealer I was a little afraid because I’ve never found a concealer that makes me feel comfortable, feels natural, and doesn’t crease up or look cakey. This one, though, is a total game changer. It’s easy to apply, so creamy, and looks so natural. It’s the one and only concealer I use.
- Too Faced Teddy Bear Hair Powder Brush
This brush in particular is my favorite brush to use for bronzer! I have not used any other brush I have since I got this one (unless it’s dirty). The shape of it is easy to pick up the powder and apply to the face, it’s also extremely soft and is cruelty-free!
- Kat Von D Tattoo Liner
For my favorite eyeliner of 2016, it has to be the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner. Like many others have said, love the applicator and the formular is easy to apply. But unlike most other people, I prefer the Mad Max Brown color over trooper, I’ve always been more into brown eyeliner because I think black looks too harsh.
- Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick
The standout lipstick of the year! I really love the formula of the product and love that it’s made with natural and organic ingridents. The formula is super creamy and super pigmented, and the scent is delicious!
- Benefit Cosmetics Cheekathon Blush & Bronzer Palette
A palette that does it all for your face. It has all the cult classic face powder from Benefit at an amazing price point. This palette is my first interaction with Benefit face powders, and I have to say the hype is real! The color of Hoola is amazing and very universal, the 4 blush colors also all stand out on their own.
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Definer
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know I’ve been a diehard Anastasia Brow Wiz fan since I discovered it in 2015, but when they came out with the Brow Definer, it totally one upped the Brow Wiz in the way that it’s so easy to use and doesn’t require you to be as detailed (perfect for the I’m in a rush and need to go days).
- Benefit Cosmetics Goof Proof Brow Pencil Easy Shape & Fill
Benefit came out with a bunch of brow products this year, as a person that doesn’t have a complicated brow routine, I decided to give the Goof Proof Brown Pencil a try as it seems really easy to use. I really like the formula and the packaging is very easy to handle. I would say I like this one just as much as the Brow Definer.
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Master Palette by Mario
As a late comer in 2016, this palette wasn’t released till October but it has quickly become my favorite. It’s a neutral dream with some darker colors that works hand in hand with the rest of the palette. I love the pigmentation of the palette, and the formula is even better than the Modern Renaissance Palette in my opinion. My only complain is that the palette was a limited edition so I’m dreading the day I hit pan (should’ve gotten a backup).
- Becca Jaclyn Hill Champagne Collection Face Palette (not pictured)
2016 was the year of highlight, but I didn’t purchase any individual pan because I wasn’t very into it at first. When Becca came out with the Jaclyn Hill Champagne Collection Face Palette including 3 extremely pigmented blush and the highlighters Jaclyn created- Champagne Pop and Prosecco Pop, I thought it’s a great way to get my feet wet. I’m really happy with the palette and loveee both highlighter, I can’t say that they’re my all time favorite since I haven’t tried much other than these two and the Becca Opal, but it’s definitely a palette worth mentioning. Champagne Pop is now part of the permanent collection and I know they still have some of the split pans available on Sephora if you want to give their highlighter/blush a try!
Can you believe we will be ringing in 2017 in just a couple days? This holiday season passed by so quickly and quit frankly, it feels kind of weird and I feel like I haven’t been in a festive mood this year. But as New Years Eve is getting closer and closer, and the After Christmas Sales happening all over the place, it is getting more and more excited about dressing up for the occasion. It is the one holiday you can shamelessly make yourself a walking disco ball after all.
Here are some items to add to your outfit for any and all NYE parties out there. The idea is that you don’t always have to repurchase a brand new outfit, but one key element that can help elevate what you already have in your wardrobe!
Hope everyone had a great year! See you in 2017!
- V-Neck Camisole Top
For a more casual, laid back party, you can go with a fun top like this and pair with some black jeans or skirts. I love the slightly loose fit that allows for an extra glass or 2 of champagne.
- Sequined Top
If you want a wow effect when you walk into a room, you can opt for a more dramatic top like this one. A statement piece that can be wear over or under a dress to create some unusual and fun looks.
- Long Satin Dress
Wear it alone or pair it with a top. This piece is classic and can be dress up or down depending on your need. I love the idea of adding a splash of color (that’s not the traditional gold or silver) for NYE.
- Sequin Dress
Another wear it alone or pair it with others option! For a more dressy look, you can pair this with a fur coat and some heels, or wear it under a sweater for a more casual yet festive outfit.
- Metallic Striped Cami Top
I love tops that are versatile, this one is shiny, festive, but the cut is more casual. The shape also allows you to easily tuck it into a pair of high waisted jeans, or wear it with a fun flowy skirt.
- Velvet Top
A more untraditional route when it comes to NYE dressing. This year anything and everything velvet is in. It’s cozy, fancy, and sometime different for the winter season. I like the option of having just the top so you can still mix in other elements if you want, or keep it very simple with a matching bottom.
- Off the Shoulder Top
If you’re looking for something unique, this top definitely screams that. It has a fun shape, perfect combo of gold and black for the festivities, and also shows off a little skin. The sleeves are a little bubble shape to give it a more playful look.
- Metallic Shimmering Dress
I know this color is very different and might even be ungly for some, but I love the light green with a little golden tone to it. It’s definitely a piece that will make your look pop!
- Contrast Sparkly Dress
For the more traditional, classy parties, this dress is definitely a winner. You have the black to elevate the formalness, but the gold panel ties it all together with the festive look you would want for a NYE party.
- Stain Maxi Dress
To go to the way way fancy spectrum, this dress is simple but yet a statement piece with the material being so bright and eye catching. The asymmetrical cut on the bottom is not too noticeable but creates a pretty flow to the dress.
I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to get to this post, but better late than never!
I have a couple of Bite Beauty Lipsticks and I love the formula, so Back in October when I took a trip to NYC, I knew I couldn’t pass on the chance to visit the Bite Beauty Lip Lab and create some for myself. I opt for the standard color option instead of customizing a color for myself, and ended up spending more than half an hour picking out the colors I want (definitely very glad I didn’t go custom because I might be there all day trying every color combo possible).
With the 2 color options I picked out a MLBB neutral color in their Amuse Bouche formula and a deep berry color in their matte formula. I really enjoy the experience of trying out different colors/formula leisurely and without having to clean out each lipstick before I try them like when you have to do in store. It is funny to see the colors I’m drawn to in the tube and the colors that I actually like when it’s on me. I think I’m starting to get a hang of picking out the correct color for myself. I forced myself to picked out a bold, fun color because I already have so many nude lipsticks and really want to branch out and add some bold lip options to my collection, and I’m so happy with the berry color I picked out. It’s so perfect for fall and winter and the matte formula is extremely comfortable and not drying. It’s not as matte as M.A.C. but I find that even though I love the look of matte lipsticks, I don’t usually like the way they apply on me and if they’re super matte it usually makes my lip look really wrinkly and old, so the Bite Beauty matte formula is perfect for me. I know they don’t do that formula anymore on Sephora and it might be something you can only get at the Lip Lab, so I would definitely recommend you trying it if you get a chance!
It was truly a treat getting to pick out your own color and see them making it into a tube. It would be perfect as a girls date, mother daughter date, or just as a gift for the special beauty lover in your life. The next time you visit NYC and have some time to spare, definitely check it out!
Thanks to the recent Sephora VIB sale, I was able to purchase some items I’ve been wanting to try for a while. Today’s look is made up with some tried and true favorites and a couple newcomers I want to point out that’re making their way to my everyday rotation!
I have been an Anastasia brow product fan since I started purchasing makeup for myself – first there was the Brow Wiz, then come the Brow Definer – I’m a big fan of both and for the longest time I’ve been resisting to try new brow products, because if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? Well, kind of. During the sale I decided to give the Benefit Goof Proof Brown Pencil a try because there have been a lot of hype about it (and the Benefit Brow products in general) circulating the internet. And I have to say, I’m very impressed by it and have been reaching for it almost every day. I love that it’s so easy to apply and the packaging makes it very easy to handle. I find the formula very creamy, and dare I say I think it might be even cremier than the Anastaisa range, though you have to be careful because it’s very pigmented and you can easily overdo it if you’re not paying attention.
For the longest time I debated whether or not I want to get the Modern Renaissance Palette. The color in this palette is very untraditional and not something I would have picked out for myself normally, but with all the red hue makeup look popping up everywhere, I was encouraged by the internet to trying these colors out. The formula is so easy to blend, and the reds are surprisingly easy to work with even for an everyday work look. I’m pretty comfortable with even the bolder warm shades (Red Ocher, Realgar), but I wanted to be more adventurious with my makeup so I’ve been incorporating more of the cooler shades (Venetian Red, Love Letter) in this palette into my everyday look and am loving it. This palette is so easy to use even though the color in the pan looks a little scary, I would definitely recommend anyone that’s still on the fence about purchasing to try it out!
The last new-in item I want to mention is the Viseart Blush Palette. Viseart products are known for their quality as they’re originally made for pro artists to use, and though the package isn’t as fancy and glamourious as some of the other brands on the market, I promist they’re definitely worth while. Spending this much money on an item is usually a hard pill to swallow, regardless of your budget, but as many reviews have mentioned the price per oz/g is actually pretty compareable, if not cheaper than many of the other mid range products out ther (it’s actually about $3.3 a gram compare to a Too Faced blush that’s about $4.3 a gram and a Benefit Blush that’s $5.8 a gram). There are 3 different palette combination to chose from so there’s something for everyone, if you’re in the market for some beautiful, pigmented blush, you should definitely try these out.
On my face today: Too Faced Hangover Replenishing Face Primer // Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint in Medium // Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Eye Shadow Palette // Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Mad Max // Viseart Blush Palette in Plum/Bronze // Benefit Cosmetics Goof Proof Brown Pencil in 04 // Glossier Boy Brow in Brown // Urban Decay All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray
This year I notice my skin is getting more dry than usual, so I decided to explore and experiment with body creams out there. I’m actually very very excited about all the skincare and bath products I got, which I usually am not. Below I’m gonna go through all the items I purchased, some I have not had the time to fully try them out yet, so like the makeup haul, I will pop in some first impression of them!
- Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil 7 Piece Body Butter Collection
Anything in a jar usually turns me off, for sanitary reason and my own laziness. But I really wanted something thick and heavy as a winter moisturizer so I decided to give this set a try. You get 7 different scents to try which is a great way to explore a brand that’s new to you. So far I really like the body butter from how it applies to how it leaves my skin. I apply it on my body (specifically legs which gets the most dry) after I shower and it keeps my skin very hydrated and moisturized throughout the night. It is very smooth and not tacky when applying, which was my biggest fear when it comes to heavy moisturizers.
- Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Body Boom
The Bum Bum Cream has been all over the internet, I’m curious about the hype and want to know if it’ll actually tighten up my skin. During my quest of searching for some moisturizer to test out I saw the set which is only 10 dollars more than the full size Bum Bum Cream and comes with a full size body wash, so I got suckered into getting the set. I have yet to try out the moisturizer yet because I wanted to give the Josie Maran Body Butter a fair try before switching, so TBD on how it works (the packaging though is so so adorable).
- Ouai Clean Shampoo and Repair Conditioner
Reading the review online for Ouai I was really skeptical on the smell, because a lot of people said it smells like old lady (but what does that even mean?). I decided to give it a try anyway because there are also a lot of great review and I have yet to find a shampoo and conditioner set that I really love. Upon first try I actually really like the smell, it’s very subtle but comforting, it doesn’t make me nauseous or overwhelm me. I went with the Clean Shampoo and Repair Conditioner combination because I really want something that will give my scalp a good clean, but also want to avoid having it strip away all the shine or dry out my hair. So far I would say I enjoy using them, will need a longer testing period to see if it’s a repurchase worthy product.
- Moroccanoil Fleur de Rose Shampoo and Conditioner
I had a sample of this shampoo and conditioner and liked it upon initial use, but after a while, the scent got a little overwhelming. I got them during the sale because I wanted to give it another try, but when I opened the packaging without ripping off the seal of the shampoo, I knew the smell would be too much for me. It’s a beautiful rose scent, which might be beautiful for a candle, but as a shampoo and conditioner it was just a little too much. They went back to the store the next day…
- Nest Holiday Ornament Scented Candle
If you want your home to smell like Christmas, these are not only delicious smelling but the packaging is also very festive. They would be great for decorating your home for the holiday or as gifts to loved ones.
- Belif Don’t Be Flaky Gift Set
I’m a big fan of the Belif True Cream Moisturizing Bomb and have been wanting to try their Moisturizing & Firming Eye Cream because HeyClaire raves about it all the time. I’ve been hesitant to purchase the full size eye cream because I’m pretty forgetful when it comes to applying it… So this set was perfect for me! I have yet to open the Hungarian Water Essence and I honestly have no idea what it really is, so will have to give that a test run before I report back.
November to me officially marks the beginning of the holiday season. All the holiday commercials are rolling out, decorations around the stores and shopping malls are going up, and the holiday gift sets of course are always something I’m excited to see.
For this haul I’m dividing up the makup and skin/bath and body portion so hopefully the post is not too wordy. Though I just received these products not that long ago so it will be hard to give a full review, I want to run through the list and my first impression of them!
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Eye Shadow Palette
I’m extremely happy that I decided to get this palette! The colors are very different than what I usually wear but they’re all very wearable. I’m able to create looks that are very neutral but also can put out some super dramatic looks, which I lack in my collection. The formula is amazing and I really enjoy playing around with it so far.
- Viseart Blush Palette in Plum/Bronze
Pretty much all my blushes are very summer-y, so when I saw the colors in this palette I couldn’t wait to try it out. I think the colors are perfect for the fall and winter, and the bronze will be great for the days you just want a little more definition on your face but don’t want to contour. But do keep in mind that they’re extremely pigmented, so use a very light hand when applying (especially the blush).
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Master Palette by Mario (an honorable mention)
I purchased this before the sale, but want to mention this in case you see one in store. This palette is one of the most gorgeous palette I’ve seen. Yes it’s another neutral palette, but I just couldn’t resist. The colors are so beautiful and the formula is so buttery, though I would be careful with the fallout. If you happen to come across this palette, BUY IT! It’s truly amazing.
- Tom Ford Ultra-Rich Lip Color in Revolve Around Me
This is my first ever Tom Ford lipstick! I’ve been wanting to try one but they don’t carry Tom Ford in the Nordstrom near me and I simply can’t justify buying a $53 lipstick… So when I saw Sephora started carrying some of their makeup items, I knew this would be my chance to try. The packaging is beautiful as you would expect, and I’m a little afraid to try the lipstick because I feel like I’m going to ruin the embossed logo, haha. I really do love the color from looking at it in the bullet tho, and can’t wait to try it out.
- Besame Cosmetics Classic Color Lipstick in Red Velvet
Red lips is something I love when I see it on others but never had the courage to try. When I discover this brand, I was very intrigued by their “classic reds” statement and the interesting shape of their lipstick. I got the Red Velvet which is slightly deeper red and not as orange or bright as a true red, but I think it suites my skin tone better.
- Urban Decay Vice Lipstick in Uptight
Another neutral lipstick, because a girl simply can’t have enough neutrals. I tried this color in store a while back and have been waiting for the sale to get it. I went with Uptight which is a Comfort Matte formula, a medium neutral color that is warm but not too brown. Sometimes I find a cool tone neutral can make me look a little dead so after many trial and error, I think I finally know what shades suites me best when it comes to neutral lipsticks.
- Buxom Lash Waterproof Mascara
Mascara is not something I get very excited about. I can never really tell the difference other than if it smudges on me or not. My eyelashes are not that impressive so even with a volumizing mascara, you can’t really tell the difference from regular mascara. I was recommended this by my coworker so I thought why not? I plan on giving it a few try to see if it makes me feel “wow”.
I’ve been on a beauty product hiatus lately, not being very interested in new beauty products, and not very motivated to try new things. But when the Sephora Holiday Shopping Event is right around the corner, it kind of force me to plan and think about the items I need to restock, and also list out some things I would like to try. Every year beauty lovers all over look forward to this event, because it’s simply an amazing deal and the perfect time for you to stock up on basics or try out luxury items at a great discount! This year is no different, and I’ve manage to pull myself back together and create a list of items I’m extremely interested in getting my hands on during the sale! Here are some of the items I’m eyeing, what are you planning on getting?
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Eye Shadow Palette
I’ve been eyeing this palette since it was released, the red tone in this palette is so different from anything I have. The colors are kind of intimidating, but after seeing a lot of tutorials online, they look so versatile! It is definitely one of those outside of my comfort zone product that I’m nervous but excited to try.
- Ouai Shampoo and Conditioner
Ouai has been one of the most talked about hair product this year, the baby of the hair genius Jen Atkin pretty much markets itself. I’m particular interested in the CLEAN shampoo to help tame the oily mess that’s on my head.
- Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit – Surreal Light
Okay, so I don’t need anymore face palette… But just look at this packaging! I’ve never tried any of the Hourglass powders so this palette seems like a great way to try them out!
- Tom Ford Ultra-Rich Lip Color
I think this one is pretty self explanatory here. Owning a Tom Ford lipstick is every beauty lover’s dream, but the hefty $50 + price tag is not a easy pill to swallow. The Sephora sale is a great chance to get your hands on one at a discounted price since there are no brand restriction during this sale. If you’ve been wanting to get a Tom Ford lipstick but haven’t been able to justify it, this is your chance!
- Giorgio Armani Beauty Lip Magnet Liquid Lipstick
Another high end lip product that normally would be hard to justify buying… I personally have not tried this product yet but am definitely interested to see what all the hype is about.
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Definer
One of the things I always have to purchase (multiple of) during the sale is my brow pencil. When Anastasia Beverly Hills came out with the Brow Definer earlier this year, I was unsure about it because I love the Brow Wiz so much I didn’t know how I would feel about the new shape of the Brow Definer. Turns out, it’s just as amazing (if not more amazing) than the Brow Wiz. I love the fact that I can be more careless with this one and not have to worry about the “lines” being too obvious.
- Benefit Cosmetics Goof Proof Brow Pencil Easy Shape & Fill
Speaking of brow products, one simply can’t ignore the huge range of brow products Benefit launched this year. Everything you could ever want for your brows, they’ve got it. I’m a fairly boring person when it comes to brows, I need my brow pencil, and my Glossier Boy Brow. So even though I already have a brand I like, I’m always open to trying out other ones on the market!
- Drybar Triple Sec 3-in-1
Dry shampoo is something I haven’t really been able to get on with. I just don’t seem to find them effective and it usually just makes me feel more greasy. I’ve heard a lot of good reviews of this one tho, so I’m tempted to give it a try.
- Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion
One of my favorite things to play around with makeup wise is eyeshadow, and one simply can’t go without a good primer. I’ve been loyal to the Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer since the very beginning, because I find it very effective and doesn’t give me a silicon-y feeling when applied.
- Urban Decay Naked3
Another out of the ordinary color palette for me. But since I’ve pretty much got my neutral palette covered, I thought it’s time to add in some fun colors. I’ve played around with this palette before at my friend’s place, and really like the look of the pinks on me which is unusual. Though I’m really interested in the palette, I have yet to be able to pull the trigger to purchase it, but I think the 20% off might just be the push I need to get it!
- Buxom True Nude Lip Foundation
I’m forever trying to find a good nude lipstick. I really like the coverage on this one and the color selection seems right up my alley.
- Kat Von D Tattoo Liner
An everyday stable in my makeup routine. Always good to have a few in stock in case you run out!
- Stella Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner
I still can’t decide if I like this one or the Kat Von D one more. I think they each have their time and place, so I like to have one of each in my collection so I can have my options depending on my mood that day.
- First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Face Moisturizer
A good face moisturizer is hard to come by. I’ve tried a few brands that are ok, but I’m not wow by. The only one that I absolutely love is the Sisley one my mom gave me, but that’s simply too expensive for me to repurchase whenever I run out… So I’m still on the lookout for a good alternative for the day I run out of my Sisley moisturizer.
- Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream
Another product that peaked my interest because of the name. The fact that it’s supposed to help firm up your skin just makes it even more intriguing.