My First Foundation! BareMinerals Made2Fit Custom Shade

That foundation has my name on it – literally

If you saw my recent post about testing foundation samples, you know that I couldn’t find a foundation that I loved and would want to purchase and wear regularly. It was a bit disappointing, but it wasn’t a huge deal for me. Then Influenster sent over the opportunity to create my own personalized BareMinerals foundation ($49).

I figured something that was literally made for me might be the best full-size addition to my collection. I also really love the BareMinerals bareSkin Serum Concealer which has great coverage but looks undetectable and blends in like a dream. I didn’t love the BarePro because it was too matte and a tiny bit heavy, but this claimed to be lighter coverage with a natural finish.

The Made2Fit formula is definitely dewy – I appreciate the hydration on my dry skin, but I did set my t-zone with powder because it was a bit too glowy for me in those areas. The coverage is light which I prefer, but I’ve read reviews that it’s buildable too. The shade was also the perfect match for me without emphasizing my yellow undertones. I was really impressed that it was so spot on. Even better, if it doesn’t match, you can exchange it for another shade for free.

So, am I a foundation convert? Not exactly. While I do like this more than any of the other foundations I’ve tried, I still think just a bit of concealer looks the same and it’s faster for me to apply. I’m really glad to add this to my collection for when I may need it though. I also love that it has my name on it – super cute – and a sanitary pump. If you have a hard time finding the perfect shade, I would definitely recommend this!

You can sign up for Influenster to receive free makeup too! Are you already a member? What have you received lately? If not, would you pay $50 for a custom foundation?

February Birchbox

Monthly unboxing and reviews

I was most excited when I saw this shampoo and conditioner from Love Beauty and Planet, which I’ve been wanting to try for a couple months. These are from the Volume line, which has Coconut Water and Mimosa Flower, and they smell lovely. The duo is vegan and sustainably produced with ethically sourced ingredients; I absolutely love that and am impressed that the full sizes are only $7 at Target.

However, the shampoo contains sulfates which I try to avoid for my dry, wavy hair. It claims to be replenishing and nourishing, and while it does not strip my hair as much as some other sulfate shampoos, I wouldn’t say it’s hydrating. There are no silicones in the conditioner, so it doesn’t weigh down my hair, but I’m not sure if I saw an increase in volume either. I might try the Hydrating Shea line because I’m really into the thoughtfulness behind the line and all of my favorite shampoos and conditioners are much more expensive.

My favorite item is the Balance Me Wonder Eye Cream. I love that it’s 99% natural and hydrating without being heavy. Some eye creams can give me milia, but this hasn’t and I’ve been using it for a week. I’ve tried a few things now from Balance Me and I’m impressed with the line!

The last two items are eye makeup products. I received the Smashbox Always On Gel Liner in black which is pretty boring. I don’t wear eyeliner much because my eyes are sensitive. I also received the MAC In Extreme Dimension 3D Black Lash mascara which was disappointing honestly. With such a dramatic name, I was expecting lots of volume. It separates very well, so I liked the fanned out effect, but there was not much length or volume. If you like a very natural looking mascara, you may like this.

Box breakdown:

  • Shampoo/Conditioner (3 oz each): $8
  • Balance Me eye cream (.24 oz): $14
  • Smashbox eyeliner (~.02 Oz): $9
  • MAC mascara (~.14 Oz): $7

For $10, I received $38 of product! I also got to try a brand I’ve been intrigued by, a brand I already loved, and a new mascara (which is my favorite makeup item to try). If you’re thinking about getting a subscription, please considering using my link!

What did you receive this month? Did we try any of the same items?

What’s In My Shower? Bodycare, Haircare, Etc.

My favorite shower things

Sometimes I forget about the products in my shower – even though they’re some of my most used items! So, I figured I would share some of my favorite body products, haircare, and other shower essentials.

I’m obsessed with this Josie Maran Argan Sugar Balm Body Scrub  ($38 for 10oz). It has a lovely abrasive texture for removing dead skin and then melts into a balm which leaves behind a layer of argan oil, coconut oil, and shea butter. It sounds a bit weird, but it’s really convenient to have a single product for both exfoliating and moisturizing. This smells amazing as well – sweet and citrusy. It also comes with this adorable wooden scoop, so you don’t get the jar gross or wet with your fingers.

This Number 4 Hair Care Detangling Comb is really useful and only $4! I think I received mine when I purchased a couple items from Birchbox, like their Super Comb Prep and Protect and Clarifying Shampoo. Reed loved the leave in conditioner and I was impressed that the shampoo was sulfate-free yet still effectively clarifying. This comb doesn’t rip out any hair and detangles gently. The curved end means you can hang it on your shower and I love the bright color.

Another bright item is this coral razor from Billie, a new subscription service. I’ve been super loyal to the Venus + Olay razors for about five years, but here in NYC, the refills can be $30 for six. Billie is only $9 for 4 cartridges that are automatically shipped to you. The blades are sharp and there’s an aloe bar for smooth gliding, but you still should use shaving cream. My old ones did have a giant comfort bar on both sides (and they smelled amazing – which is actually kind of weird for a razor), so I didn’t need shaving cream. You can sign up for Billie with my referral link if you’d like.

I have a couple face washes in my shower – the Acure Organics gel is great for removing makeup. It says it’s for normal to oily skin on the packaging, but I have dry skin right now and it doesn’t strip my skin at all. Reed loves the St. Ives Green Tea Scrub which I only use after a sweaty workout. The exfoliant particles are now 100% natural (instead of microbeads). It does contain dyes, which I think is stupid, but I’ve found most acne targeting cleansers are way too harsh for me and this one works to keep minimal breakouts at bay.

I didn’t photograph my shampoo and conditioner because they’re all almost empty and looking well loved. I adore the Alterna Caviar Moisture line, but at $34 a bottle, it’s a splurge. I’m currently rotating between the Verb Hydrating line ($14/bottle) and Living Proof Perfect Hair Day line ($26/bottle). I like them both and would definitely repurchase either. My hair is dry, fine, and wavy for reference.

Since I’m almost out of shampoo and conditioner, what line should I try next?? What’s your favorite shower product?

Foundation First Impressions

Testing three formulas

 

I have a confession: I’m a beauty blogger, but I don’t own a single foundation. It may sound crazy, but I have never tried a foundation that I loved. Maybe it’s just that I haven’t discovered the right one or it could be that I don’t like wearing heavy makeup. I generally prefer a bit of concealer where I need it.

I love concealer and I’m sure I’ve tried about 20 different ones; there are currently three in my makeup bag. So, I’ve decided to test out it’s companion and dip my toes into the vast world of foundation. I picked up a few samples from Nordstrom and Sephora when I was in Chicago and have been testing them out for a couple weeks.

The first is the ultra-luxe Guerlain Lingerie de Peau Fluid Foundation which retails for $63 (1 oz). I really don’t know if this is a good foundation or not because I only wore it for three minutes. This stuff reeks. Honestly, the perfumy scent was so strong that I had to wash my face. This has SPF 20 and the shade 02N was a great color match for my fair/light complexion with yellow undertones, but I was worried it was going to irritate my skin.

Next I tried the BareMinerals BarePro Liquid Foundation in Cashmere 06 ($34/oz). The shade matched me very well, but leaned a bit yellow when the label says it has a neutral undertone. This claims to be full coverage with a matte finish. It’s definitely the most coverage I’ve ever worn, but my freckles were still visible. I’m never trying to cover them, so I didn’t mind at all. I’m just not sure if that would make it truly full coverage. It definitely has a matte finish, so I used a hydrating setting spray because my skin is currently dry. It would probably be best for me in the summer, but then I don’t like wearing much makeup. It does have SPF 20 and lasted through the entire day. I also found this pretty comfortable throughout the wear, but it wasn’t weightless.

This last one isn’t exactly foundation, but it’s still a base which I hadn’t tried. I’ve heard great things about the Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer, so I picked up the shade Nude. This is $45, but the tube is 1.7 ounces like a standard moisturizer versus 1 ounce for foundation. It was slightly dark for me unfortunately, but it’s sheer enough that I still wore it for the whole day. I thought the dewy finish was pretty and that the effect was very natural. I appreciate the skincare ingredients and SPF 20, but I don’t think I would purchase the full size because it didn’t look much different than my every day makeup without a base product.

I hope this was helpful even though I’m a foundation novice! I just received the new BareMinerals custom foundation which may be “the one.” What’s your favorite base?

My Favorite Eyeshadow Palettes

Rounding up my best eyeshadows

Last week, I wrote about my favorite face palette; there was no competition because I don’t have many face palettes and that one is perfect. But for eyeshadow palettes… I own several and have decluttered even more. So after testing them all week, I’ve finally decided on two that have tied for my favorite palettes.

The Ciate Pretty Palette isn’t talked about enough in my opinion, but it’s amazing. The shadows are soft, blendable, and highly pigmented. The packaging is super cute, and it’s compact, so I travel with it often. The shade selection makes it easy to create a variety of looks with this palette alone too. The right side is full of shimmers and the left has all mattes.

Top row: Bright Spark, Happy, Feeling Lucky, Daydream, My Tribe Bottom row: Enchanted, Dainty, Unconditional, Lovely

I especially love Bright Spark and Happy, which I wear all the time. My Tribe is the perfect under eye setting powder in a pinch too; I’m about to hit pan on it. It may seem like I’ve hardly made a dent in the others, but you need such a tiny amount because the colors are so pigmented.

The Urban Decay Ultimate Basics Palette is one of my most used eyeshadow palettes. Almost all of the shades are matte – except Blow, which is the perfect shimmery lid shade. I love that there are a mix of warm and cool tones in this palette.

Gorgeous swatches via Safiyah Tasneem

The darkest shades work well as eyeliner, while a mixture of Nude and Pregram also works as an under eye setting powder for me. While this one may not be as “fun” in my opinion, it’s a staple and I would definitely repurchase it.

What are your favorite eyeshadow palettes? I probably shouldn’t add more to my collection… but I’d love to know!

Clean Beauty Round-up

Getting into green beauty

As I’m trying to incorporate more natural makeup and skincare into my routine, I wanted to share some new additions to my collection.

I love everything from Bite Beauty and the Amuse Bouche lipsticks are no exception. They’re creamy, smooth, and really pigmented.

This Clove and Hallow concealer covers the dark veins under my eyes so well. It also blends in nicely using the Ecotools Concealer Brush.

I’m usually not much of a primer girl, but the Whish Beauty primer is actually smoothing and hydrating on my skin. I’ve been enjoying the extra step in my routine.

I’ve been testing out some Mad Hippie skincare lately. I love that you can find the line at Whole Foods and it’s affordable compared to some other clean lines. I’ve been using the Vitamin A Serum twice a week to combat fine lines; I need to test it longer before I can give it my stamp of approval. I like the Cream Cleanser as a gentle morning face wash. It doesn’t remove my makeup, so I don’t use it at night.

This Beautycounter Nourishing Eye Cream is my favorite discovery from the line so far. It’s hydrating without being heavy.

Lastly, I’ve written about this Balance Me mask before, but I’m loving that it’s 98% natural and makes my skin feel so soft.

What are your favorite clean beauty products??