November Favorites

Sorry this post is a bit late! But as I said in my Pile of Applications post, things are a bit hectic around here. Still, there were some products that managed to stand out from the PhD application craze and make it to my monthly favorites!

 

Quite by accident, my November favorites are color coordinated.

Quite by accident, my November favorites are color coordinated.

 

Too Faced Lip Insurance Lip Primer

IMG_3120

This is a sample size, but I cannot for the life of my remember how I received this sample since I don’t own many Too Faced products. I really enjoy this primer though. Only recently have I been concerned about lip primers in particular. Mostly because fall and winter are the seasons of darker, more matte shades and you want those lippies to stay put! Maybe it’s just me but I also think that this primer has helped seal some moisture into my lips. I notice less drying and chapped lips when I use this lip primer. A full size Lip Insurance primer retails for $19 and when this sample is up I may have to bite the bullet here.

The Balm’s Meet Matt(e) Palette

I got this palette awhile back from a Hautelook sale for $17, but it took me until November to really explore this palette properly. Honestly, having a Hautelook account is worth it for The Balm alone since this palette runs for $34.50 at Nordstroms.

All your matte needs in one.

All your matte needs in one.

All the shades are named after a Matt, which is cute. But the colors themselves are amazing. Buttery soft shadows that blend like a dream. The little brushes that come with the palette will do in a pinch but they’re nothing special.

Left to right: Matt Patel, Matt Schilling, Matt Smith, and Matt Gallagher.

Left to right: Matt Patel, Matt Schilling, Matt Smith, and Matt Gallagher.

The above photo shows some of my favorite shades from the palette. I love the smokey-taupe of Matt Patel, and the dusty emerald of Matt Schilling will be perfect for the upcoming holidays. You can barely see Matt Smith on my hand because it’s such a close match for my skin tone, which is great for those days you want to pretend you’re not wearing makeup. For similar reasons, Matt Gallagher is great crease shade.

Dr. Jart + Black Label Detox BB Beauty Balm

This tiny tube holds one amazing product!

This tiny tube holds one amazing product!

This wee sample came in my first Birchbox, which I did not do a review on because it came so late in the month. This BB cream has blown me away. Such a small amount covers my face and makes my skin look so much healthier. It helps conceal and combat blemishes and evens out skin tone. There is also a 25 SPF in this product, which is ideal for my lifestyle (I never walk out of the house without some level of sunblock on my face). Your skin will look velvety smooth. This balm comes in one universal shade–for my fair skin this blends out beautifully but darker skin tones would have a hard time matching up with this formula I think. A full-size .6 oz tube of this costs $36. Since I’ve gotten at least a half-dozen uses out of this tiny tube and it’s not empty yet, the price point for this BB cream is probably worth it.

Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser

Almost empty.

Almost empty.

As you can see, I am almost out of this sample sized cleanser, which came in an ipsy bag. Luckily, I already have a full-sized bottle of this from a previous PopSugar Must Have box since the product retails for $32. There’s a light strawberry scent to this cleanser that is invigorating. This cleanser is multi-purpose too: you can use it as a make-up remover (and it’s gentle on the eyes too), as a cleanser, or as an exfoliator. I have used this product all three ways and I will say each way is effective, but my favorite way to use it is as a cleanser. I just feel refreshed after using this cleanser.

Real Techniques Stippling Brush

The perfect brush.

The perfect brush.

Up until a year ago I was not that invested in makeup brushes. Boy, has that changed! My brush collection has grown, but my favorite brush is easily this Real Techniques stippling brush. It has a pleasant heft to it and the bristles are soft and densely packed. I use this most often for blush; this brush has cut down on heavy-handed application a.k.a. clown face. When I use this stippling brush it puts on just the right amount of color and gives a stunning airbrushed effect over the cheeks. For $9.99, you need this brush in your life.

And now for my other monthly favorites…

Favorite Film

It should come as no surprise that my favorite film for November is Interstellar. It’s been weeks, but I still return to the idea of that film and turn it around in my mind. A close runner-up though, would be Fury, another film I saw this month that blew me away.

Favorite Book

I think my favorite read from November would have to be The Book Thief.

That wraps up my November favorites. Hope you found something to enjoy!

Thanks for popping in!

October Ipsy Bag 2014

Ipsy time come-th! When I first saw the contents of my Glam-Room I was not all that excited. But after trying these products in the last week, I got excited. Here are my first impressions on all these ipsy goodies.

This month’s theme was Beauty Candy, which sounds amazing right? Except for the life of me I cannot connect candy to any of the sights, smells, or concepts behind any of these products. Which kind of drives me nuts. Usually ipsy’s themes are spot on and the products fit perfectly with the bag and theme. I know it’s a little thing when the products themselves are good, but Beauty Candy is a really cool concept that just got wasted on bag contents that didn’t match. Rant over!

IMG_2824

I really like the bag this month. After several meh bags, this teal vinyl bag will likely have a long run in my purse. It’s brightly colored and easy to see in the dark depths of my purse and so far has been rather durable.

On to the products!

Ayres Patagonia Body Butter (sample value $4.15)

The primary notes in this scented body butter are jasmine and rosemary. At first, I thought the rosemary would be too overpowering and might make me smell like a biscuit. But the jasmine-rosemary combo smells kind of alluring.  And the scent lasts for several hours, which for me is a good thing. Beyond the scent, this body butter is great. I’ve been using it primarily as a hand cream because the sample is only 1 fl oz, but my hands feel supple and silky to the touch. This body butter is also cruelty free and paraben free. Huzzah! A full size 6.75 oz jar of this body butter costs $28.00. For that price, I’m not sure if I’d purchase a full size (maybe one day if I’d like to splurge?) but I’m really enjoying this little sample. If you’d like 25% off your Ayres purchase, use the code AYRESIPSY at checkout on their website.

Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser (sample value $4.00)

This product has slowly won me over. Right as my ipsy bag arrived I ran out of my drugstore cleanser. Coincidentally, I have a full size of this stashed in my bathroom cabinet from a PopSugar box, but I hadn’t tried it yet because of the aforementioned cleanser. So I switched over to the Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser. I’m on my way to becoming a fan. This cleanser is so light and gets a little bit of a lather going when you rub it on your wet face, and leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth after. This product is also safe to use on your eyes as one of the recommended uses is for eye-makeup removal. You can supposedly leave this cleanser on for 5-15 minutes and use it as an exfoliating mask because of the strawberry extract acts as a natural exfoliant. There is a slight strawberry scent, which I’m not the biggest fan of, but it doesn’t linger so I think I can overcome it. Plus, a little bit goes a long way: a dime size droplet covers my face.  A full size cleanser is 4 oz. and is worth $32. I’m grateful I received a full size from another subscription box because I fear (or rather my wallet does) this may become a favorite. For 20% off the Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser use IPSYBC20 at checkout on their website.

Nicole by OPI in On a Gilt Trip (full size $5.00)

This is a full size product and my first Nicole by OPI product. Which is strange because you can get these just about anywhere. Price range depending on where you buy them and if there is a sale going on, so the price listed above is a median. I have this glitzy gold shade on my toes at the moment and I also used it in a floss manicure last week. The polish has held up rather well and dried incredibly fast. I like that it’s a more subtle gold: there’s still plenty of shimmer but it’s not as in your face with the glitter. I’d buy more from this brand in the future, for sure. Considering how easy it is to get a hold of, there isn’t a discount code for this product.

noyah’s Lipstick in Deeply in Mauve (sample value $3.00)

Jury is still out on this lippie. It’s a lovely shade that on my lips reads more like a light plum when built up, but you can also dab the lipstick on for a more truly mauve color. The staying power on this lipstick is fairly impressive: after a few hours the color is not as intense but it’s not patchy either. The formula is a semi-matte or more of a natural finish. The claim is that this should be a moisturizing lipstick, and that’s where I falter with this product. In no way did it dry my lips, but I didn’t feel they were hydrated either. My lips are going through a bit of a chapped phase at the moment, and I certainly don’t blame noyah for that. So that’s why the jury is still out. A full size noyah lipstick will cost you $18.00 and they only have five shades for now. For 15% off and a free lip balm enter FALLinLOVE at checkout on their website.

Skone Cosmetics TATTOOED Waterproof Eyeliner (full size $15.00)

I took this one for a test drive yesterday and this eyeliner is quite nice. It’s got a matte finish and the pigmentation is a true black. I was able to achieve a basic cat-eye rather quickly with this product. The tapered tip made it easy to draw both fine and thick lines depending on how you hold the pen. The one downside for me is that the felt-tip style applicator is inflexible. My Jesse’s Girl liner, which is of a similar quality and design, has a tip that’s more like a firm paintbrush so that it moves a little bit more, which makes it easier to manage the all-important flick of the cat-eye. So I wish the Skone applicator was more flexible, but that’s my only complaint. I got my brows waxed while my friend Marissa and I were out and I teared up a bit: my mascara ran but my eyeliner was locked in place. Waterproof: check. All-day wear: check. So for 10% off your purchase on Skone’s website, enter the code IPSY at checkout.

Though I wasn’t initially excited about these products, they all won me over to some degree. This is a solid bag from ipsy with absolutely no fails and some good finds. For the $10 price tag of the ipsy bag, this month’s value comes out to $31.15. Not a bad value.

I still think the Beauty Candy theme makes no sense with the bag’s contents, but those contents are pretty nice. Well done, ipsy!

If you’d like to give ipsy a shot, here is my referral link.