Tarte Clay Play Palette

When traveling, I am pretty good at keeping my clothing, shoes and accessories to a minimum. Where my real problem is when I go to pack up my makeup. I start off thinking that I will not need much and end up with two makeup bags, a brush bag and a few random items shoved in my purse. Because of that, I am always looking for the perfect all-in-one product to help cut down on the number of items I “need” to bring with me. That’s what I was looking for when I picked up the Tarte Clay Play palette.

“Define & contour your features with this universal ‘power sculpting’ palette – like shape-wear for your face! Sculpt your eyes, brows, nose & complexion with 12 essential shades: nine neutral-to-smoky matte shadows with buildable color, and three sculpting face powders contour a variety of skin tones. Each microfine powder blends to a natural, long wearing finish minus the harsh lines. The secret’s in the clay: it helps balance & replenish skin so you get the most even payoff without creasing, caking, or flaking. #slaywithclay” -Ulta Beauty

The product

The Tarte Clay Play palette is full of everyday neutral matte shades. There are 9 smaller pans that can be used as eye shadows and 3 matte face powders to use to bronze and contour.

While all of the shades are matte neutrals, there is a wide variety of tones. For me, Sand is the perfect all over base shade while Solstice is perfect as a matte brow bone highlight. I use Instinct, Dunes, Journey and Stone as my transition shades for neutral and cool toned looks. Ember is perfect when I am going for a warmer look while Onyx works great to deepen the outer-v to create a smokey look. I also use Smoke to fill in my brows.

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Swatches from Tarte.com

As for the face powders, I have found that I like to use all three. I will go in lightly with a big fluffy brush and Timber to bronze up my face. Then, I will use Terracotta to contour my cheeks and jaw line. I like to finish with Desert to deepen my contour a little more, but closer to the hairline.

final thoughts

My final thoughts? I am really in love with this palette. I have had it for about two months now and I use it every single day. While it isn’t a stand alone palette for me, I love it as a companion palette. I like to pair this with palettes that lack transition shades, such as the KVD Saint & SinnerHuda Beauty Desert Dusk and Natasha Denona Aeris palettes. What makes this palette so great to travel with is that it has any matte/neutral eyeshadow I could need, a brow powder and my bronzer and contour shades. So it is basically 4 products in one. The powders are pigmented and all blend beautifully and, I have to say, Tarte makes my favorite black shadow. I HIGHLY recommend this, especially if you travel a lot or need a multipurpose palette.

What is your go to palette for traveling?

xoxo

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Tarte Holiday 2018

I’ve said it before and I will say it again, I love Tarte Cosmetics. I can’t think of a product from them that I have tried that I didn’t like. I especially love their blushes and the Hybrid Gel Foundation. One thing that I enjoy about the holidays are all the cosmetic releases. So many brands release value packs for discount rates, it makes it hard to decide what to pick up. Tarte is one of those brands, but they go above and beyond. They have so many great releases and exclusives for every beauty supplier. What really caught my eye were the Lip Luxuries Deluxe Lip Sculptor Set, Limited Edition Box Set and the Limited-Edition Tartiest Lip Bling Top Coat.

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I am a huge fan of the Tarte Lip Sculptors! They are a lipstick and gloss duo that is perfect for traveling.

I know that matte lips have been all the rage, but I definitely need something more moisturizing, especially while I was on Isotretinoin. These are the perfect product. They are creamy and pigmented. They stay put without the need of a lip liner and make your lips look luscious.

Normally, one of these is $24 but in this set you get 5 travel sizes for $29. If you are the type of person who likes to wear a different lip color each day, this is the perfect set for you. Or, if there are only a couple color you would wear you can always break apart the pack and give the extras to others.

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I travel a lot and I love it. One problem that I have is that I have a tendency to over pack especially when it comes to my makeup. When I first saw this set at Ulta, I thought it would be the perfect set to travel with. It includes 25 eye shadows, two blushes, highlighter, bronzer, matte lip paint, glossy lip paint, sex kitten liner and tarteist mascara.

   

I used every shadow in the palette and I was fairly impressed. The only shades I did not like were bangle and treasured. Otherwise, I used the shadows in every row to create a look to demonstrate the palette diversity.

 

I really enjoyed the blushes and highlight. They were smooth and blended well. The only powder product I did not like was the bronzer because I think it is too light for most skin tones.

As I said earlier, I enjoy a glossy lip. This set included a mini of both the matte and glossy lip paints. They were not patchy and were comfortable to wear. I like to top the matte lip with the glossy lip when it starts to get too dry.

Overall, this little box has been great to travel with. I took it with me to Punta Cana and it had every thing I needed for a complete look. Sadly, this one was an Ulta exclusive and is no longer available. However you can pick up a similar one from Sephora or Macy’s.

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Lip toppers have been huge the last few months. It seems like every company is coming out with one. Personally, I have stayed away from them. I really dislike glosses that have sparkle in them because they have a tendency to feel gritty.

This topper is different. It is fairly sheer and has very fine gold and pink/purple glitter. It makes my lips look so juicy without being sticky or feeling gritty. It also doesn’t upset the liquid lip I wear underneath. I think this will be so pretty in the spring and summer or topped over a holiday red for a festive look.

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What can I say, Tarte killed it again! I really like all of these product. The only things I was not a huge fan of were the Sex Kitten Liner and the bronzer. Other than that, every thing works so well. If you can only get one thing, I recommend the lip sculptor set. New to makeup or travel often? Definitely give the palette a try.

What product do you like most?

Xoxo Sammie

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Natasha Denona Holiday 2018: Aeris

I feel like Natasha Denona eye shadow palettes are the Porsche of the beauty world. They are stunning, high quality and way beyond most peoples’ price range. When the Lila Pallet was first released, I wanted it so bad. Luckily, I found the the Huda Beauty Desert Dusk palette satisfied my need for purple shades. However, since the first press photo of the Aeris pallet, I couldn’t get it out of my head. I have to be honest, it was mostly the blue shade. Luckily, the Sephora VIB sale came around and the palette was in stock at my local store.

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This is a five pan palette and is said to consist of “metallics, mattes, duo-chromes and sparkling chroma crystals.”

To me, I see only three formulas. Burnt Terracotta is a matte while Ice Blue, Red Bronze and Nude are metallics. The final shade, Peach Bronze, is a sheer glitter and I believe it is considered a chroma crystal. All of these were swatched dry with no base or primer.

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When I review palettes, I try to make looks using only the shades that are in the palette. All of these looks were created only using a mix of the five shades in the Aeris palette.

I LOVE this look! I started with Burnt Terracotta in the crease. I went in lightly at first and built it up lower in the crease. I went in with a tiny flat brush and Red Bronze on the outer two thirds. On the inner one third, I laid down NYX glitter primer and topped that with Peach Bronze. I took Ice Blue on a pencil brush and took it all across the lower lash line. For the inner corner, I wanted to brighten things up with a little Nude.

For this look, I wanted something more daytime but still glam. The best part? It is SO EASY to replicate. I started with Burnt Terracotta lightly in the cease and then packed all over the lid. I also smoked it on the lower lash line. I took a little concealer and blended it on the center of my lid. Then, I topped that with Nude and blended the edges with Burnt Terracotta. I added more Nude on the inner corner and the center of the lower lash line. Add some winged liner and you’re done!

As I mentioned, I am in love with Ice Blue and I wanted to use it in a different way. I took Burnt Terracotta and fluffed it all over the lid and blended into the crease. I applied NYX Glitter Primer on the inner two thirds of the lid and topped it with Peach Bronze. For the lower lash line I used Burnt Terracotta and added more Peach Bronze to the inner third. The look is finished with Ice Blue on the inner corner.

This final look I wanted something festive for a holiday party. I look Burnt Terracotta lightly in the crease, outer corner and on the lower lash line. I used my KVD Tattoo Liner to create a wing and topped it with NYX Glitter Primer. I then took Red Bronze to create a metallic red wing. I finished with Nude on the inner corner. This look is beautiful with a red or nude lip.T (2)I really enjoy the colors in this palette. That being said, it isn’t really a stand alone palette. There is only one matte, so you are limited there. Luckily, the colors all work well together.

The one matte shade is beautiful. It is smooth, blendable, and buildable. It works great as a transition and to create a warm smokey look. Nude and Red Bronze are beautiful metallic shades. They apply best with a damp flat brush or with your finger. Ice Blue is a little more sheer and needs to be built up a bit. I definitely prefer to use my finger or a small, stiff brush with the blue. The final shade is Peach Bronze. At first this shade was disappointing because it was so sheer. However, now that I know how to use it, I like it. It works best topped over another shadow. Also, you will want to use a tacky base and your finger to get the most opaque application. I love using it on the inner corner, lid and lower lash line.

Do you own anything from Natasha Denona?

Xoxo Sammie

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Huda Beauty Desert Dusk Palette

I know everyone LOVES warm eye shadow palettes but for me I am kind of over it. Personally, I haven’t really been drawn to the orange and red shades like everyone else. I own Modern Renaissance by ABH and that has been good enough for me. That is until I saw the Huda Beauty Desert Dusk Palette.

What really drew me in were the purple shade and shimmer shades. It was more than just the typical warm tone palette. The shades were so interesting to me and I knew I had to have it.

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Here are all of the shade swatched left to right, top to bottom. All are dry finger swatches done on bare skin.

The palette includes 8 mattes: Desert Sand, Musk, Eden, Amber, Oud, Amethyst, Saffron and Blazing; 6 shimmer shades: Blood Moon, Celestial, Nefertiti, Royal, Cashmere, and Turkish Delight; 3 duo chrome toppers: Twilight, Retrograde and Angelic; and one pressed glitter: Cosmo.T (4)

For this first look, I really wanted to use Twilight. I started by fluffing Desert Sand all over the crease. Next I went in with a little Eden as a transition shade. To add some definition, I used Amethyst on the outer corner and then swept it all over the lid. I also used Amethyst smoked out on the lower lash line. To finish the look, I put a little glitter glue on the lid and inner corner and then topped that with Twilight.

For this look, I started with Desert Sand as my base and went in with Musk as a transition shade. Then, I took Blazing a little lower in the crease. To add definition, I used Saffron on the outer corner. I also took a little bit of Musk, Blazing and Saffron on the lower lash line. On the inner 2/3 of the lid, I applied Cashmere with a damp, flat brush. For the inner corner, I applied a little glitter glue and finished the look with the Cosmo glitter shade.

For this final look, I started with Desert Sand as a base. It just works perfect with my skin tone. I then used Musk as my transition shade and went in with Amber a little lower. I also used these two shades on the lower lash line. Next, I took Oud all over the lid making sure that it was darkest on the outer corner. On the inner 2/3 of the lid, I placed a little glitter glue and topped that with Retrograde. The look is finished with Cashmere on the inner corner.T (2)

This palette has quickly become a daily go to! I just love the variety of looks you can do. You can create something colorful or go more neutral; flashy or casual. One of my favorite quick, easy looks is to use Saffron all over the lid and blended into the crease with a lighter color on the inner corner.

For me, the mattes all blend beautifully. The shimmer shades are reflective and apply best with a finger or flat brush. For the duo chrome toppers, I find that they really do best topped over a glitter glue. It helps to get the best pigment with the least amount of glitter fallout. These also apply best with a finger but a smaller flat brush works well too. For the pure glitter shade, most definitely use a glitter glue and either a finger or tiny brush. My favorite glitter glue to use is the NYX Glitter Primer. It is inexpensive, doesn’t irritate my eyes and keeps my glitter in place all day.

Will you be picking up this palette? Are you still a member of the warm tone shadow craze or are you ready for something new?

Xoxo Sammie

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Kiko Milano Cosmetics

It seems like makeup keeps getting more and more expensive. Especially when you are a fanatic, it is too easy to fall into the trap that price indicates quality. Next thing you know, you are justifying buying a $60 foundation. Or is that just me?

Luckily, I have found a brand that is not only great quality but budget friendly as well! Thanks to Octoly, I had to opportunity to try some products for free in exchange for my review. I have to say, I was not sure what to expect at first. Luckily, I was beyond impressed.

When it comes to mascara, I look for something that will define and volumize. The Luxurious Lashes Mascara ($12) formula definitely fits my needs. I am left with lashes that are black, volumized and fluffy. They hold a curl all day and I have had no problems with flaking or smudging. My only other thing I like in a mascara is for it to be waterproof. That being said, I find myself reaching for this mascara multiple times a week.

I have always been a fan of colored liner. I remember the first time my mom gave me a blue one, I was so excited! Now that I am older, that has not changed. I love a little color on the lower lash line or a bold wing. The Metallic Liquid Eyeliners ($10) are so fun! I got mine in a grey/gun metal color and I am in love. The pop of color is fun, wearable and perfect for the holidays. The formula was pigmented and I had no trouble creating a wing with the brush tip. It stayed all day with no cracking, smudging or feathering.

The final product that was sent to me through Octoly was the Velvet Passion Matte Lipstick ($12) in shade 316 which is a beautiful rose color. The first thing I noticed is that the cap in magnetized which I find so cool! I have carried this in my backpack and have had no problems with the cap sliding off. The next thing is the tip of the lipstick. It is slanted, which might look strange but is so useful! I use the tip to line my lips and the apply the lipstick like normal. It is so comfortable to wear and is long wearing. I had no problems with the formula becoming too dry or feathering. That being said, it is important to know that it is a traditional lipstick formula which means it is not transfer proof.

Overall, I am so impressed with all of these products! I have used the mascara and lipstick so many times over the last few weeks. I have not used the liner as much, but enjoy wearing it for a fun fall look or a night out with the girls. All of the products have been fantastic quality and are so affordable! I cannot wait to try more from Kiko Milano.

Have you tried anything from Kiko Milano? What are your favorite products?

Xoxo Sammie

I received this product complimentary from KIKO Milano U.S.A.. All opinions are 100% my own #gifted #honestreview #octolyfamily

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Review: Tarte Double Duty Beauty

I am always on the hunt for something new and interesting. Makeup is supposed to be fun and exciting. Even in the midst of looking for the next new thing, I have my go-to products that I always come back to. I recently realized that a lot of these products just happen to be from the Tarte Double Duty Beauty line. My love affair first started with the Hybrid Gel Foundation. This foundation was a God send after my skin dried out from taking isotretinoin. Since then, I have tried a lot of other products and Tarte has become one of my favorite brands.

One of the most popular items from Tarte’s Double Duty Beauty line is the Shape Tape Concealer. Though it is a little pricey at $25 a tube, it is so worth it! The formula is creamy, pigmented and blendable. It is perfect for covering blemishes as well as concealing under the eyes. The only problem is that it can be a little drying under the eyes if you have dryer skin. Currently, I like to layer it with my Maybelline Age Rewind and it is the perfect combo.

I am all about products that have dual purposes because I travel so much. They just make things easier and free up space in my bag. One of the newer Tarte products is their Blush & Glow highlighter and blush duo. I love the formula of this. The products are smooth and blend easily. The blush is not too pigmented, but buildable. I love the highlighter because it gives me a glow without being sparkly or accentuating texture. Beyond that, the packaging is beautiful, sleek and compact.

To help blend out concealer and foundation, there is the Double Duty Beauty Quickie Blending Sponge. I have to say, this isn’t my favorite sponge. It is just a little too stiff for my liking. I much prefer the Eco Tools sponge.

One of my all time favorite mascaras is the Light, Camera, Lashes from Tarte. So, I was more than happy to try out their Maneater Mascara. On their website, It claims to curl, lengthen and to give lashes 23x more volume. I have to say, I think it does all of the above. I love using this because it gives me the volume I want and keeps my lashes curled all day without any smudging or flaking.

Another awesome product to travel with is the Tarte Lip Sculptor lipstick and gloss duo. I love a glossy lip. With my skin being so dry, I need as many moisturizing products as possible. I love this because the formulas are pigmented and comfortable to wear. You can layer them or wear them on their own. The lipstick is so creamy and the gloss is not too sticky. Being that they are so compact, it is a great product to keep in your purse.
A similar concept to the lip sculptor is the Tarte Lip Architect. This is perfect for the girl on the go that does not want a glossy lip. It is a cream finish and it super moisturizing. One side is a lip liner and the other is a coordinating lipstick. While I enjoy the application, these are not the longest wearing but they are very comfortable.

The final product for today is the Sweet Tarte Fragrance Rollerball. This is a nice sweet fragrance. I like to keep this roller ball in my purse to use after going to the gym.

Over the last year, Tarte has become a favorite brand. Their double duty line has so many amazing products! Right now, Ulta even has a set with the full size highlighter/blush compact, lip architect, mini mascara and roller ball perfume. The whole kit is only $36!

What are some of your favorite Tarte products?

Xoxo Sammie

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KVD Saint & Sinner Eyeshadow Palette

I have been a fan of Kat Von D for as long as I can remember. I grew up watching her tattoo on tv and was always mesmerized by her process and talent. When she came out with her makeup brand, I was so intrigued because of her unique style. Since then, her eye shadow formulas have become one of my favorites. Each palette is so unique and she always manages to come out with interest colors, cool names and new ideas.


When I first saw the teasers for her holiday release, I couldn’t wait. I knew it was going to be beautiful but trust me, it is even more stunning in person.

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“Experience divine dimension with three fearless finishes: electrifying metallics, velvety mattes, and shimmering pearls, plus two new special effect glimmer shades. Rightfully placed at the peak of the palette, these transformative super-glimmer shades amp up any eye look with prismatic micro-pearls that catch the light with every movement. Each cushiony shade is blendable and buildable. Kat Von D’s signature high-performance, long-wear eyeshadow formula creates next-level eye looks that deliver major impact. Whether you’re feeling saintly, sultry, or a little of both, you’re sure to find endless inspiration within this show-stopping palette of epic proportions. ”


Within the Saint & Sinner eyeshadow palette, there are 12 Saint and 12 Sinner shades. They can be mixed and matched to create a huge variety of looks. Most of the shades are are a shimmer, metallic or pearlescent formulas but there are 7 true mattes. The colors range from black to neon green with a little of everything in between.

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Here are some swatches of the palette. Keep in mind, these are all finger swatches. There is no powder or primer base and no use of water or a setting spray.

         

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For this look, I started out with Amen as a base and in the crease. Then I went a little lower in the crease with Crucifix. To create a smokier look, I mixed a little bit of Crucifix and Sabbath for the inner and outer corner, as well as the lower lashline. For the actual halo, I used Vestment on the center of the lid and center of my lower lashline. The look was finished with a littler Heaven in the inner corner.

 

I was inspired by this look created by Kristen Leanne. I started with  Baptism as my base. For the crease, I went in with Martyr followed by Crucifix to darken the outer corner. I also used these on the lower lashline. For the lid, I used Worship as a base and went over that with Rapture and a little glitter glue. I also took a little bit of Worship on the inner 2/3 of my lower lashline. The look is finished with Exodus on the inner corner.

 

I wanted to go for something a little more day time. I used Amen as my base and went in with Martyr in the crease and on the outer corner. I also went very lightly with Crucifix to darken the outer v a little more. On the lid and lower lashline, I used Chalice.I finished the look with a little Relic on the inner corner.

 

 

Finally, I knew I needed a sunset eye. With Amen as my base, I took Martyr and Devil in the crease. For the outer v  and lower lashline, I used Crucifix. I took Rosary on my lid and on inner half of my lower lashline. Finally, I used Sacred Heart as my inner corner highlight.
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Overall, I really love this palette. I think it is absolutely perfect for people who love to experiment with bold looks or like to incorporate pops of color. That being said, for most people it is not going to be an everyday or stand alone palette. For the looks above, I did only use shades within the palette and I was happy with how they turned out. However, I find that  I like to mix this palette with mattes from my Tarte Clay Play or KVD Pastel Goth Palette.

Almost every shade is the palette was fantastic. What I will say is that Sabbath is not the blackest black, but it can be built up. Also, the top two shades, Absolution and Rapture, are glitter shadow toppers. These do best when applied over a glitter glue. All of the other shimmer or metallics shades I was able to apply with my finger or a damp, flat shadow brush.

Overall, I am in love with this palette. Kat killed it again. If you’re interested, you better hurry. This is a limited edition holiday release.

Do you like to play with color? Will you be picking up this beauty?

Xoxo Sammie

 

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NYX In Your Element Palettes

When I first saw the images for the NYX In You Element Palettes, I was instantly drawn to both Earth and Metal. Something about them just spoke to me and they were so different from the reds, oranges and yellows that everyone seems to be coming out with. The best part,l is NYX is a drugstore brand so I figured that I would be able to pick up both for somewhere between $30 and $40 USD. Sadly, that wasn’t the case.


On launch day, I rushed to my computer and anxiously waited for the NYX Cosmetics website to load. When it did, I was shocked. They were changing $30 PER PALETTE! Considering they sell $5 single shadows and other affordable products, I was dumbfounded. I decided that I would be much better off saving my money and picking up one higher end palette instead of spending $60 on two drugstore palettes.


So I waited and I am so glad I did. Right now, Ulta is having a sale September 24-30 and the NYX In Your Element Palettes are on sale. With the $3.50 coupon, they are only $17.50 before tax. Still a little pricey, but a bargain considering what they cost before the sale. So, I decided it was time I picked up both the Metal and Earth Palette.


The Earth In Your Element Palette was the first one that caught my eye in the press release pictures. The color selection screamed fall to me and gave me ABH Subculture vibes. While this is most certainly not a dupe, it is a good alternative if you had problems with the ABH formula or you were too concerned to purchase it.


When I swatched this palette in store, I was concerned. The colors seemed to be patchy and ill pigmented. I didn’t even pick it up at first and almost talked myself out of it. But, I kept thinking of how pretty the colors where and how it was on sale. I told myself that worse come to worse, I could always return the palette if I didn’t like it.


In the end, the palette performed much better than it swatched. The mattes were buildable and blended well. In the first look, I used colors 1, 3, 10, 4, 6 and 11. For the second look, I used colors 1, 8, 7, 2, 9, and 5. I didn’t have any problems with any shade in particular. The shimmer shades apply best with a stiff or damp brush and the green shades need to be packed on to show their true color.


Out of all six element palettes, Metal seemed to be the most fun. It is a palette of 12 different shimmer shades. So, obviously this is not a stand alone palette. But the colors seemed fun and unique.


When swatching all the colors, it became apparent that a couple of them would be used best as a topper or inner corner highlight as opposed to a stand alone shadow. The two that would be best as toppers are 1 and 5.


Also, I found that the shades did not work well with a brush. I tried with a dry flat brush, damp flat brush and with my finger. I decided to show how two different colors applied with each method. These can be placed directly on the lid, but will benefit being placed over the top of glitter glue or a tacky base. I found that there was a little bit of glitter fallout.


I do enjoy both of these palettes and think they are pretty. The colors definitely perform better than I expected after swatching in store. Both palettes did have a little bit of fallout but nothing too crazy. So the big question, are they worth the price?


In short, the answer would be no. At full price, it is ridiculous to pay so much for something from a historically drugstore brand. Where I think NXY went wrong is by partnering with social media influencers. Each palette was designed by a different influencer and the price reflects that. I wish NYX had created the palettes without the collaborations and kept the price around $20. However, if you see one that you like then I would definitely pick it up while it is on sale.

Do you plan on picking any of these palettes up?

Xoxo Sammie

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Ulta Beauty Cosmetics Part 2

I love shopping at Ulta. They are continuously adding more brands to their shelves and their rewards system is the best. I mean who doesn’t want to earn money off of their next purchase just for buying things you were going to get anyway? What a lot of people do not realize is that Ulta has their own in house brand. It ranges from makeup and skincare to hair and body products. I recently received a bunch of these products as a gift with purchase. I figured, why not make a part two to my Ulta Beauty review. You can check out part one here.


With my recent Ulta Beauty purchase, I received an eyeshadow primer, eyeshadow palette, eyeliner, mascara, face palette, lip primer, matte lip crayon and a lip gloss. Along with the makeup there was also a compact mirror, pencil sharpener and blush brush. All of these products came in a pretty purple watercolor makeup bag.


In my first Ulta Beauty Haul, we received a matte tinted primer. I loved it and still use it daily. In this bag we received the Tinted Eye Primer in Satin Blush. The tube is full sized and has a ton of product. The primer is a pink shimmer. The color is so pretty, but I would use it as a lid color or base for another pink shade. You wouldn’t be able to use this as a primer over your entire eye unless you want to look like you have pink eye.


The eyeshadow palette contains four matte shades and two shimmer. I was impressed with all of the shades, though the mattes were a little dry to the touch. The mattes included were Plum Pop, Desire, Say What and Buzzword. For the price, these blend much better than a lot of drugstore shadows. The shimmers, Sunshine and Fearless, are very pigmented and creamy. I used Say What to set my primer, Buzzword in the crease, Plum Pop on the outer corner with Fearless on the lid and Sunshine on the inner corner. I love the look as it reminded me of a sunset.


We received a pencil eye liner that is double sided. On one end is a liner in Blackout and the other end is in Plum. I am not a fan of these liners. I think they they are too stiff and not pigmented enough. That being said, I really enjoy the Ulta Beauty Gel Liners.


The final eye product is the Ulta Beauty Maximum Lashes Mascara. This mascara claims to be defining and lengthening. I already have fairly long lashes, but this product impressed me. It really helped to lengthen and define my lashes without being too wet or clumpy. It was also very black.


Along with the eyeshadow palette, there was a face palette that included a translucent powder, bronzer and highlight. The Ulta Finishing Powder in Translucent is great. I haven’t used setting powder in a while because it has been too drying. However, this one sets my concealer without making my under eyes super dry. As for the bronzer,  I usually prefer something cool toned. But, I do like the Ulta Matte Bronzer in Warm. It isn’t too orange and it blends really well. The only product I did not like in this palette is the highlighter. The Ulta Illuminator in Radiant Diamond was just too stiff and chunky for me. It was also subtle and accentuated texture. However, it can be pretty as an eyeshadow when built up and applied with a damp flat brush.


The Ulta Lip Primer claims to enhance the color of any lip product. I thought that it would act as a concealer on the lips, but it applied clear. I am not sure that it enhanced the color of my lipstick, but it was very hydrating and helped the product to go on smooth.


The final two products were both for the lips. The first is the Ulta Matte Lip Crayon in Soiree. The color is very pretty and the formula is pigmented and smooth. I found it to be comfortable to wear, but not long wearing. It is also hard to apply because the tip is so fat. Also included was the Color Rush Lip Gloss in Olivia. This gloss is so pretty, smooth and pigmented. It feels hydrating and looks great on the lips. I would recommend wearing this over a lip liner to keep it from feathering.


Overall, Ulta continues to surprise me. A lot of their product I have tried, I have really liked. Their eye shadows have proven blendable and pigmented while the lip products are comfortable and smooth. I am excited to see what this brand will come out with next. I have my fingers crossed for a Stila Magnificent Metals dupe.

Have you tried anything from Ulta Beauty?

Xoxo Sammie

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Wet n Wild: Midnight Mermaid

I have been obsessed with mermaids ever since I was a little girl. I can remember spending summers in our pool with my cousin playing mermaid and trying to swim like we had tails. When I first heard that Wet n Wild was releasing a mermaid collection, I knew I had to have it.


The collection has 12 items total: 4 MegaLast Metallic Liquid Catsuit Lipsticks, 4 Color Icon Metallic Liquid Eyeshadows, 3 MegaLiner Metallic Liners, and one Mermaid Highlighting Bar. The collection is limited edition and can be purchased online at Wet n Wild and Ulta as well as instore at CVS and Walgreens.


The first products are the metallic liquid lipsticks. Wet n Wild first came out with their Catsuit Liquid Lipsticks early this year. I have a full review of them here. These are part of the same line except they are a metallic matte and in more trendy colors. The first is Coral Crown which is a burnt orange metallic. Next is Harbor A Crush which is a burgundy red metallic. It is also the only shade that is not vegan. Next are the really trendy colors. Siren’s Jewel is a metallic emerald green color and Sea Seduction is a dark blue metallic. All of these shades are really beautiful and comfortable to wear. They are very pigmented and were not streaky or patchy. While the red and orange are the most wearable, I can definitely see myself wearing the blue on a girls night out. The only this is that they do slightly transfer.


I was most excited for the liquid eyeshadows. With all of the glitter, they really reminded me of the Stila Magnificent Metals and they did not disappoint. There are four different shades: Lara’s Necklace (green), Aquatic Prism (blue), Mysterious Nights (black), and Moonlight Majesty (purple). They are different colored glitter in a matching base color. However, the base color is not super opaque. These work best when placed on the top of a powder shadow. I also found that they work really well when applied with a brush, for more precision. Ther work great as glitter liner or to use as a glitter cut crease. Also, they are beautiful to use for a glittery smokey eye or to create a glitter halo effect. I think it could be fun to use for a glittery lower lash line as well. I really enjoy these and hope the Wet n Wild will add to the collection with lighter colors.


Wet n Wild has had the MegaLiners for as long as I can remember. For this collection, they decided to change it up a little. They came out with three new, limited edition metallic shades. Sea Symmetry is a beautiful green color and it is fairly pigmented. I only have to go over it once to get full opacity. Sea Dreams is a dark blue and Trident’s Shimmer is a steel grey. These are both beautiful but they take a couple of layers to get full color pay off. I really enjoy using these on their own as well as a base for the liquid eyeshadows to create a glitter liner.


The final product is the Mermaid Highlighting Bar in Midnight Moon. This product is stunning! It has the image of a mermaid tail embossed across it. The product itself it very smooth and blends out great. The color is like a gold/green with pink shimmer. It is really beautiful on paler complexions and would work on most skin tones as a great inner corner highlight.


Here are swatches of all of the products starting with the liners, lipsticks and finally the shadows.

Overall, I am very impressed with all of these products. The lipsticks are comfortable, unique and will be stunning for fall. The shadows are so much fun and a much less expensive alternative to the Stila Magnificent Metals. The liners and highlighter are a fun pop of color. I really hope that Wet n Wild continues to expand their Catsuit Liquid Lip line as well as the liquid shimmer shadows.

What trends are you most excited for as we go into fall?

Xoxo Sammie

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