REVIEW | Glossier Skin Tint, Stretch Concealer, & Cloud Paint

After purchasing and loving Glossier’s Generation G lipstick (review here), I had been dying to try more of Glossier’s makeup. However, for the longest time, I really wasn’t in need of new makeup, so I refrained from buying new stuff.

Recently, I finally was at a point where I could add new products to my collection, so as part of a massive haul, I purchased the Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint (1 oz, $26) and the Cloud Paints (0.33 fl oz, 2 for $30 or 1 for $18). I also opened the Stretch Concealer (0.17 oz, $18) that I purchased a while back to use for the first time with the Skin Tint and Cloud Paints.

The Perfecting Skin Tint

The Perfecting Skin Tint comes in five possible shades: Light, Medium, Dark, Deep, and Rich. Before I go into anything else about this product, I have to point out that the shade names are very misleading. I purchased the medium because I am a very true medium skin-tone, but it ended up being way too fair for me, to the point that I looked ghostly.

Also, since there are only 5 shades, I would think it’s likely that some people would have difficulty finding a shade match – it’s even likely that the shade Dark is too dark for me, and I would have to mix Medium and Dark together to get my ideal shade. I know this is a skin tint, which means the coverage is minimal, but there is enough coverage that you can tell if the shade of the tint doesn’t match your skin tone.

My issues with the shade names and shade selection aside, I really enjoyed this product. Generally, my skin behaves well, so I don’t really need much coverage. This product gives me just enough to even out my skin tone. If I have any blemishes, I’ll go in with a concealer for more coverage (Glossier Stretch Concealer is great for this).

This skin tint is definitely on the dewy side for a face product, but that’s what I like. If you don’t like dewy complexion products, you may not enjoy this, though going over the product with a setting powder does minimize the dewiness a bit.

Surprisingly, this product is also very long-wearing – on more than one occasion, I’d put it on in the morning, and it’d still be on my face after 12 hours of wear. I also didn’t wear this on really hot days, so it may be different in that case. I’ll be bringing this with me to the hot and humid Taiwan later this year, so maybe I can give an update on wear time after my trip.

Overall, great product! It does what I want it to do and is pretty affordable for a non-drugstore product. I definitely plan on re-purchasing in the future if I don’t find something I like more, though next time, I’m purchasing the shade Dark. In the meantime, I plan on mixing in the Drunk Elephant D-Bronzi Anti-Pollution Sunshine Serum and hope that will help deepen the shade a bit.

The Stretch Concealer

The Stretch Concealer comes in the same five shades as the Perfecting Skin Tint, though the shade Medium in the concealer worked for me so much better than Medium for the skin tint.

love this concealer. Colourpop’s No Filter Matte Concealer in Medium 28 had been my favorite for a while, but then it stopped working for me because it would dry out my undereye when I used it. The Stretch Concealer is creamy and not too thick, which is perfect for blending out. I use it to cover my dark circles and any blemishes on my face, and the Medium shade is perfect for both of these functions.

Would I repurchase this? YES, though a repurchase would be far into the future, since I don’t use up concealer all that quickly. Like most Glossier products, the price of this one is pretty reasonable – it may seem expensive for very little product, but since this is a cream concealer, a little goes a very long way, and I can foresee myself using this for a good while.

The Cloud Paints

I thoroughly enjoyed all of the products in this post, but the Cloud Paints were by far my favorite. It may be because blush is just more fun than complexion products. I purchased Storm, a warm rose, one of the newer shades, and Beam, a soft peach.

The shade descriptions are pretty accurate, and these blushes are pigmented. Generally, I’m not a fan of blushes that are too pigmented, but since these are a gel-cream formula, it’s much easier to control how much I’m applying to my face.

The Cloud Paints may very well be my favorite blushes ever. I don’t think I’ve seen another blush formulation quite like the Cloud Paint one – it’s neither a gel nor a cream, and it’s extremely pigmented in the best way. I’ve tried Storm and Beam each on their own, and also mixed together, and the colors are beautiful, no matter how I wear them. The longevity is pretty amazing – immediately I compare it to the Pixi Sheer Cheek Gel that I reviewed recently, which had a similar formula but no pigmentation whatsoever and no longevity either.

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These blushes are great for travel in that they’re very small, though since they would be considered liquids, they probably wouldn’t be my first choice either. Though, I love these so much that I may just deal with the fact that I have to pack more liquids to have these with me.

Overall, I continued to be impressed with Glossier’s makeup, and the brand’s makeup is definitely more of a winner than its skincare to me. I look forward to trying more Glossier makeup in the future 🙂

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REVIEW | Glossier Generation G Lipstick

For me (and probably a lot, if not all, of the beauty community), this year has been the year of Glossier. I had initially tried a couple of their products to mediocre results, but have since come to enjoy those after revisiting them. With this renewed interest in Glossier, I bit the bullet and hauled a few items (look out for that post!) that I had been eyeing through their Instagram, including this Generation G (0.07 oz, $18) lipstick in Zip, a poppy red.

I have to say, when I initially opened the tube, I was very wary – although this is a sheer matte lipstick, and pictures have proven this to be true, I was worried the color would be too bright and pull too orange on my face. I was so glad to be proven wrong – this is the perfect, everyday red for people who don’t really like bright statement lips – aka me. It gives that look of just kissed lips, yet at the same time, is pretty long wearing for such a sheer formula – it’s not transfer-proof by any means, but after a whole afternoon of wearing this, I didn’t see too much patchiness. I will definitely be looking into more colors of this lippie.

Shop with my link to get 10% off your first Glossier order! (This post is not sponsored, but I do get some store credit for purchases made through my link.)

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REVIEW | Origins GinZing SPF 40 Energy-Boosting Tinted Moisturizer

I was so excited when Origins released their SPF 40 Energy-Boosting Tinted Moisturizer (1.7 fl oz, $38) – I have been looking for a good SPF for a while, and I’m a big fan of Origins’ GinZing line, especially the Energy-Boosting Gel Moisturizer (1.7 fl oz, $28.50) and the Refreshing Eye Cream to Brighten and Depuff (0.5 fl oz, $31). Origins just happened to be having their Friends and Family sale, so I purchased this without much hesitation.

The products in the GinZing line from Origins all contain coffee bean, which helps wake up and restore radiance tired skin, and panax ginseng, an anti-aging ingredient that helps tone and brighten skin. They also tend to have citrus scents, and this tinted moisturizer is no different.

Reviews for this have been pretty mixed, as it seems that the tint, which is supposed to adapt to your skin tone, has been unflattering for many. For me, that concern was put to rest pretty quickly, as my friend had just tried this product without many issues. And, I figured if the color didn’t turn out too well on me, I could use it purely as a sunscreen underneath other face makeup.

Thankfully for me, the tint matched my skin perfectly – it doesn’t really have any coverage at all, but it does even out skin tone and give a nice, healthy glow to the skin. It felt and smelled like a moisturizer, with barely any sunscreen smell at all.

This product is perfect for lazy, no-makeup days, since you can easily use your fingers to apply this. I’ve only used this without any other makeup, as I don’t wear makeup on a typical day, but I can see myself using this on makeup days when I’m going for the no-makeup look.

I’m not sure if I would repurchase this since I do think it’s kind of pricey for how much you get and what it is, but if I don’t find anything I like more I will definitely come back to it.

Have you tried this tinted moisturizer before?

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REVIEW | MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation

I hadn’t been expecting anything else from Influenster this year, especially after that generous Posh VoxBox I received a few months earlier. So, needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised when I discovered I would have the opportunity to try this foundation.

From my understanding, this foundation isn’t new, but it’s been recently re-released with a new formulation. I’ve never tried any MUFE foundation before, so my thoughts on this won’t include any comparisons with previous iterations of the product.

This foundation can be purchased at $43 for 1.01 oz of product, and before I go into anything else about this product, I have to say that the shade selection is amazing – 40 shades! Of course, this should be the standard for any beauty company, but as one of the few companies that currently offers such a wide range of shades, MUFE gets two thumbs up from me. The shade I chose was Y345 (Natural Beige), which was basically my exact skin tone.

The packaging is also great – it’s a sturdy plastic, which may not feel as expensive as glass, but makes it easier to travel with. There’s also a pump which is very sanitary and allows for easy control of product dispensing.

I’m not much of a foundation wearer, but when I do wear foundations, I like ones that are light coverage and buildable if I want medium coverage. This one is great in that aspect, and it’s so lightweight – it’s as if I’m not wearing any face makeup at all. It blends like a dream, so you don’t get any streakiness either.

The wear time is pretty good as well – it does start breaking apart in my oily problem areas, such as my nose, but otherwise it doesn’t budge over the course of a typical work day.

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After 9 hours of wear time, no blotting or touch ups!

Overall, it’s a wonderful foundation, but since I’m not much of a foundation wearer, I won’t get much use out of it. That being said, my brother is a similar shade to me and wears foundation much more often, so I’ll be passing it on to him.

Have you tried this foundation before? What did you think of it?

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REVIEW | Urban Decay Brow Tamer

I bought the Urban Decay Brow Tamer (0.15 oz, $20) a while ago after I heard a Youtuber talk about it (I forget who), but I only busted it out recently because I had finally let go of my long expired Benefit Gimme Brow (0.1 oz, $24). I’ve used the Brow Tamer enough times now that I feel like I can give a fair review of it.

Upon first application of this, I already knew that I would not like it. Despite this, I still gave it a few more attempts to see if my mind would change – it did not.

First of all, the applicator brush is way too long. I have pretty thick brows, and I still had issues with product getting where I didn’t want it to be. On top of that, the formula of the brow gel itself is very wet, which makes application even more difficult. The wet formula also makes me feel like the gel doesn’t do much to hold up my brow hairs.

The one thing I do appreciate about this product is that it does make my brows look a bit darker, so I’ll continue to use this. However, I really don’t recommend spending money on this product – you’re better off buying the Gimme Brow for around the same price, and it does so much more for your brows.

After this one, I’m excited to try Glossier’s Boy Brow (0.11 oz, $16). Do you guys have any suggestions for other brow gels I should try?

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REVIEW | IPKN Twinkle Lips

The IPKN Twinkle Lips was part of a K-Beauty box I purchased from Birchbox a couple of years ago – I just never got around to it until recently, so this is by no means a new product.

This product is one of those that change color according to your body chemistry/temperature. I got mine in the shade “Glow Pink”, so the product goes on sheer but is supposed to leave your lips with a pink stain. And it did – my lips ended up being a glorious deep pink shade that I loved, which says a lot, since I’m not the biggest fan of pink lips. It’s not quite a MLBB, but it’s subtle in its finish and tone and goes perfectly with a simple or no-makeup makeup look.

The formula of this is amazing as well – it applies so smoothly like a lip balm and is so moisturizing on the lips. It reminds me of the Dior Addict Lip Glow Color Reviver Balm (0.12 oz, $33), which is amazing, but way too expensive for what it is. The Twinkle Lips is half the price, with slightly more product at 0.16 oz, so I’d definitely recommend this one over the Dior.

If you’re interested in trying this out, it can be purchased in the states at Birchbox ($18), Nordstrom ($18), or Amazon ($17.95). Birchbox also has a Twinkle Lips Candy Set for $25, which includes one Glow Pink and one Glow Coral. If you’re reading this the day I post it, Birchbox is having a secret sale on certain brands, including IPKN. With the code “SECRETSALE”, you can get 20% off, so the value set would only be $20 before tax. That’s almost two for the price of one!

If I ever run out of similar lip products to try, I’m definitely repurchasing this again. I love to try products like these because they’re so easy to use – you can just throw it in your purse or backpack, and you don’t even need a mirror to apply. Next up in my queue is the Butterstick Lip Treatment from Kiehl’s (0.14 oz, $19.50). If you’ve tried this one before, let me know how it went!

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REVIEW | Posh VoxBox

I was fortunate enough to receive the generous Posh VoxBox from Influenster a couple of weeks ago, and thought it’d be great to include reviews of those products here.

For those of you who don’t know what Influenster is, it’s an online/app community where you can post reviews or read other people’s reviews, and receive free products in VoxBoxes to test based on social media influence and completion of certain campaigns available to participate in on the site. Influenster predominantly features beauty products, but there are also food, health, pet products, and more. It’s easy to sign up, too – just link your social media accounts, answer some snaps to determine your interests, and you’re ready to go. If you’re interested, check it out here (x).

And without further ado, let’s get onto the product reviews:

  1. AQUIS Lisse Luxe Hair Turban ($30): I LOVE this. I have a lot of hair, and it always feels like such a hassle to deal with the mop my hair becomes after I wash it. I don’t like wrapping it with my body towel, because it’s too heavy on my head, but the smaller sized towels I have don’t fit all of my hair. This is perfect, because its design allows me to wrap all my hair up and have it comfortably sit on top of my head. Honestly though, seeing the price tag for this made me do a double take – it’s a pretty hefty price for a hair towel. I did a quick search and found similar products across the internet, for a fraction of the price, like this one from Walmart for $4.98. If anyone’s tried any affordable hair towels before, let me know how it went!
  2. Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Defrizzing Shampoo (8.5 fl oz, $22) and Conditioner (8.5 fl oz, $24): This is a great line of hair products, from what I can see from these two. The shampoo cleans my hair without stripping it of moisture, and the conditioner leaves my hair feeling soft. These products also do what they say, keeping hair defrizzed, and while my hair isn’t curly, I can visibly see more wave definition in my hair after I use them. The product is also sulfate free and has a light, pleasant scent. The only complaint I have is that the bottles are hard to squeeze – hopefully, this is only an issue with the sample bottles.
  3. LASHFOOD BROWFOOD Aqua Brow Powder + Pencil Duo (powder 0.04 oz, pencil 0.01 oz, $25): This is a great brow product. I don’t usually use brow powders or brow pencils because I don’t like doing too much to my brows, but this product definitely changed my mind. The pencil applied smoothly and had great pigmentation, and I’d definitely say it’s the winner out of the two parts of this product. The powder is great too and applies well to the brows, but has a little too much kick up of powder and can become a bit messy. I plan on passing this on to my sister, who will love it and get much more use out of it.
  4. Julep Boost Your Radiance Reparative Rosehip Seed Facial Oil (0.85 fl oz, $36): Despite all the hype and benefits facial oils seem to have, I’ve never been a fan due to bad experiences with a few that left my skin greasy yet not very moisturized. I had been prepared to pass on this because I broke out the first 2 days I used it, but I decided to give it another chance, and have continued to use it for the past 2 weeks, both night and day, as part of my daily skincare routine. I’m glad I did, because this is great. It gives me a great amount of moisture without leaving my skin feeling greasy at all, and it feels more like a serum than an oil. Next, I want to try mixing it in with my foundation and see how that goes.
  5. Dermalogica Stress Positive Eye Lift (0.85 fl oz, $65): This is an amazing product. The directions say you can use it either as an occasional treatment or daily to treat chronic eye fatigue, and I use it daily in the morning because I have fatigued looking eyes, dark circles, and puffiness. I’ve been using it for two weeks, and it’s been great. The applicator helps with cooling and depuffing, and the formula is light and absorbs well into the skin. I can’t say yet whether using this product has visibly decreased the fatigue or diminished my dark circles, but it definitely feels like it has. I’m going to continue using this and see whether it’ll do so in the future, but regardless, I definitely recommend this for anyone with puffiness, fatigue, or dark circles.
  6. Sigma Beauty Aura Powder in Nymphaea (0.3 oz, $19): This is a very pretty blush. You can’t really tell from the picture I have here, but the blush is actually very pink, despite it saying on the site that it’s a coral shade. Pink isn’t a blush color I usually reach for, so I was a bit disappointed to see it in the pan when I first opened it. But this shade was surprisingly flattering on me, and gave me a nice, healthy flush perfect for the summer. I need to build it up for it to show on my face, but I’m not sure whether it’s due to a lack of pigmentation or due to my skin tone being too dark for this blush. Overall, it’s a decent product, but probably not something I’ll reach for constantly.
  7. Sigma Beauty F40 Large Angled Contour Brush ($23): This isn’t the usual type of brush I use for blush, but it worked surprisingly well with the Sigma blush. Rather than circular motions, I swiped the product from the apple of my cheek back towards my hair line, and it applied the blush pretty evenly. On the other hand, this brush fails as a contour/bronzer brush. The brush hairs are way too long to get a nice chiseled look with contour and way too flimsy for precise application of bronzer. Overall, the brush is very well made and has definitely piqued my interested in Sigma brushes.

Overall, the value of this Posh VoxBox is $211.54 (price of sample size Ouidad shampoo and conditioner calculated from full size prices), which is amazing, and one of the reasons I will continue to be an Influenster user. You don’t need to be a famous influencer to try awesome products for free 🙂 (This isn’t sponsored. I just think Influenster is great.)

BIRCHBOX | JUNE 2016

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Even more belated than last month, as it’s already nearing the halfway point of July, but I still wanted to talk about the June box because it was pretty awesome.

No pictures for this month, as I moved and in the rush to move in before my new job started, I forgot to pack my camera. I’ve had some time to try each product this time though, so here’s what I got and mini-reviews for each product:

  1. Balance Me Congested Skin Serum (Full-size: 15 ml, $30): This serum felt really nice on my skin, but the scent is so overbearing (and chemical) that I don’t think I’d ever incorporate it long-term into my skincare routine.  I have other products that do similar things already that have more tolerable or better scents.
  2. Benefit Gimme Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel – 5 Deep (Full-size: 0.1 oz, $24):  I have pretty thick brows naturally, so I don’t really need to do much with them. Still, sometimes I feel like some parts of my brows are a little too sparse, and this product does a great job of remedying that. The sample was really well-sized this month, and I’m excited to try out the new packaging.
  3. Laura Geller Baked Gelato Swirl Illuminator – Gilded Honey (Full-size: 0.16 oz, $26): I’ve been meaning to try this product for the longest time because so many beauty Youtubers rave about it. After getting the sample and trying it for myself, I can see why. The consistency of the highlighter is amazing, and it applies so beautifully onto my skin. I’m definitely purchasing this full-size in the future.
  4. Lavanila The Healthy Sunscreen Sport Luxe Face & Body Cream SPF 30 (Full-size: 2.5 oz, $22): It’s always hard to review a sunscreen and say whether or not it helped with sun protection. Sun protection aside though, I really did not enjoy this product. The consistency was a little off to me, and there was a pink cast (almost like a tinted moisturizer, but just pink) when I put it on my skin. I lent it to my friend to use as well when we were outdoors, and she had the same issue. Definitely would not purchase this myself, especially when there are sunscreens out there with better consistency, higher SPF, and no pink cast.
  5. Marcelle BB Cream Golden Glow (Full-size: $1.6 oz, 28): I’m always happy to receive a glowy product, and this product definitely deserves its name. My face looked dewy upon application, and it was very lightweight yet gave me decent (lightweight-medium) coverage. The shade of this also matches my skintone really well.

 

Final verdict: Despite my disappoint with the sunscreen, everything else was so good that I was still very happy with the box.

BIRCHBOX | MAY 2016

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Belated post since it’s already June, but to be fair, I didn’t get my box until last week. Despite the late arrival of the box, I have to say this is my favorite thus far.

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With every box, you have three options: (1) let everything be a surprise, (2) choose one product yourself, and let the rest of the box be a surprise, or (3) choose a box with pre-selected products. This month, I chose to customize my SPF option, and I wasn’t disappointed with that or the rest of the box.

  1. Raw Spirit Fragrances Citadelle Eau de Parfum Rollerball (Full-size: 7.5 ml, $40.00): This is the only product this month that I was really meh about. I don’t have anything bad to say about the fragrance itself. However, I’m not amazed by it, and I have similar but better smelling ones in my collection already. It’s definitely not worth the hefty $40 for just a rollerball. Also, the sample packaging is very poor – it’s neither a spray or a rollerball, and every time I open the cap I feel like I’m going to spill it everywhere.
  2. Davines OI All in One Milk (Full-size: 135 ml, $30.00): Loved this. After using this, my hair was soft and in nice, loose waves comparable to those that I get when I use bumble and bumble’s Don’t Blow It (5 oz, $31.00). I’m definitely considering purchasing a full-size when I’m out of this generously sized sample.
  3. Davine’s OI Shampoo (Full-size: 280 ml, $28.00) and Conditioner (Full-size: 250 ml, $34.00):  Great shampoo and conditioner. They both smell amazing, and my hair feels clean and soft after use. The samples were really small (one-time use packets), but I can’t complain because they were bonus samples. I probably won’t ever purchase either though, because I have drugstore shampoos that do a good job on my hair already.
  4. Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner (Full-size: 0.07 oz, $18.00): This was amazing. Honestly, when I first opened it up, I thought it was going to be horrible because the tip didn’t look very thin at all. However, upon using it, I realized that wasn’t the case. It was really easy to control and draw really nice, even wings. The black is also very dark and didn’t fade throughout the day. No smudging either. I’d definitely purchase this in the future.
  5. Real Chemistry Luminous 3-Minute Peel – Body (Full-size: 5.4 oz, $34.00): I’ve only used this twice, and I’m already planning to purchase a full-size. I used it on my legs before a shave, and it definitely made a difference in the end result. My legs were much smoother and didn’t have as many ingrown hairs. Keep in mind though that for this product to work properly, your skin can’t be too wet.
  6. COOLA Classic Face Sport SPF 50 White Tea (Full-size: 1.7 oz, $32.00): Considering the size of the sample’s packaging, I was expecting to get more product, so that was quite disappointing. Otherwise, it’s a great product. It’s hard to measure whether it really protected my skin from the sun, but it’s lightweight, doesn’t make my skin greasy or aggravate it, and doesn’t smell like sunscreen. It’s definitely a good SPF product for people who spend a lot of time outdoors.

 

Final verdict: My favorite box so far. 😀 The only product I disliked was the fragrance, but those are always hit-or-miss. I’m looking forward to next month’s box.

REVIEW | NARS Laguna & Hot Sand Duo

As soon as I saw Kathleenlights on Youtube talk about this in her March favorites, I knew I had to get it. And I’m glad I did – it’s become one of my favorite face products ever.

This bronzer/highlighter duo is sold exclusively at Nordstrom and is limited edition, so get it while it’s still there!

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The product comes in the typical NARS compact, so the packaging is already on point. There’s also a decent amount of product. The only issue I have is the pan size is a little too small, especially for the bronzer. But I can’t really complain, since I bought this knowing that the pans would be smaller as a duo.

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The pigmentation is amazing, but the Laguna bronzer was lighter than I thought it would be. Here, it barely shows up on my medium skin tone, but on my face, it’s just enough for a subtle contour. It’s the perfect balance of warm and cool undertones, so it works for me as a natural bronzer/contour shade. If your skin is any darker than mine though, I don’t this bronzer will work for you.

Hot Sand is amazing. The moment I applied it to my face, it became my new favorite highlight. There’s a peachy undertone, which makes it slightly more pink than the usual gold highlight, but still gives a warm glow to the face. A little goes a long way – I use a fan brush to apply this so I don’t accidentally get too heavy-handed. From what I’ve seen, this highlight is only sold in powder form in this duo, or the Hot Sand/Orgasm duo, also a Nordstrom exclusive. It is, however, sold as a liquid illuminator at various locations. I’m definitely planning on picking that up in the future.

Final verdict: 5/5 stars. Out of the two products, Hot Sand is definitely the winner for me. However, I really do enjoy both of these, and I’ve used them almost every day since I purchased them.