Boxycharm: January 2018

Its the last day of January, so what better way to finish the first month of 2018 than with a Boxycharm review! I seriously can’t believe that January is already over. It seems like it was just yesterday I was finishing my finals and getting ready for Christmas and now I’m back in school getting ready to take some midterms. Though it was a little late this month, my Boxycharm arrived at the perfect time. I was definitely in need of a little boost to get me through the month.

If you aren’t familiar with Boxycharm, it is a monthly makeup subscription box. For just $21 a month you receive 5 full sized products. Honestly, you can’t beat that! You can check out how to sign up here.

The products

This month we received TWO palettes, a primer, eyebrow pencil, and liquid lipstick.

The first palette is the Crown Pro Glam Metals Eyeshadow Palette ($29). This palette has 9 shimmer/metallics and two mattes.

Overall, this palette is okay. Would I ever spend $29 on it? Not a chance. But I am happy to have it. The shimmers are pretty and a few are rather unique to what I already have in my collection. The mattes are really terrible. They are not pigmented at all. The palette is super cute and I will continue to use the shimmers on the lid, inner corner and lower lashline.

The second palette we received is the PUR Bronze & Brighten Cheek Palette ($34). This palette contains an Afterglow highlighter, Mineral Glow bronzer, and a new blush in the shade Blushing Glow.

All three of these products are super pigmented! Also, they all contain shimmer. The being said, I think this is a really great, versatile palette. All three shades are super creamy and would be beautiful on the eyes. I also really love using these on the face, just make sure to use a less-dense, fluffy brush. Considering I can use this on the face and eyes, I think this is a great palette for any girl on the go.

Guys, I was SO EXCITED when I say this primer in my box! I have heard so many people rave about the regular one, I couldn’t wait to try the Dr. Brandt Pores No More Luminizer Primer ($38). When putting this on the skin, it felt hydrating and sunk in without leaving a weird film. I noticed my pores looked smaller and I was definitely luminous. My foundation applied beautifully. The only thing I noticed was my foundation breaking up really badly after a few hours. I’m not sure if it was the primer or something else. I will keep trying it with other foundations and update later.

From It Cosmetics, we received the Brow Power Universal Eyebrow Pencil ($24). The tip on the pencil isn’t super fine, but for me that is okay. I only have a few places I like to fill in, so I do not need anything too precise. My only problem with this product is it only comes in one shade, “universal taupe.” While this shade may work for most light skin tones, I have a feeling it would look really ashy on medium to deep skin tones.

The final item in the box was a Girlactik Matte Lip Paint in Posh ($23). I have never tried anything from Girlactik and was excited to give this a shot.

The color was really pretty, but nothing overly exciting. The formula went on smoothly and pigmented. It dried down after a couple minutes and was transfer proof. This lasted through me drinking coffee and eating. It only started to fade after I ate some greasy Mexican food. It was really comfortable to wear, though it did make my lips look a little dry. I would be open to purchasing more colors if they ever had a good sale.

final thoughts

We received three HUGE brand name products this month from PUR Cosmetics, It Cosmetics and Dr. Brandt. Overall, this month’s box had a total retail value of $148. To me, it was totally worth it! I love Boxycharm because you get to try so many brand name products for an incredible price.

What product were you most excited for this month?

xoxo

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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.

Image result for tarte clay play swathes
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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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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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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Sephora Favorites: Sunkissed Glow

My husband always jokes that Sephora is my happy place. I always laugh along, but who am I kidding? I love going there to play with all of the different products. Between their 100’s of tester products, free mini makeup lessons and awesome return policy, what’s not to love? One of my favorite things to get from Sephora are the Favorites kits. They generally have a theme and include a bunch of different testers from many different brands. Some of the ones I’m currently loving are the Hydration Favorites and the Nude Lip Kit. Although it is not currently available, I have also really been loving the Sunkissed Glow kit. So, I figured why not give a bunch of mini reviews for all the products included?


The first thing that I noticed was the Marc Jacobs Highliner Gel Eye Crayon in Ro (Cocoa). These eye liners have been so hyped on YouTube and I’ve been dying to try them. However, it is hard to convince me to spend $25 on an eye pencil. Thankfully, the one included in this kit was full sized, so I should be set for awhile. Sephora claims it is “a crayon that delivers intense color and 12-hour waterproof wear and amazing glide.” I would agree with all of that except the 12 hour wear. My eyes must be more watery than everyone else’s because I only get a few hours before this wears away. For me, it is super pigmented, but I think I’ll stick to my Ulta gel liners.


Within the kit, there were two highlighters. The first is the Milk Makeup Liquid Strobe in Gleam. This strobing liquid is a true gold color. I find the color is pretty, but i am not a fan of how it applies. It comes with a roller ball applicator. I find that this does not distribute the highlight evenly and I still have to blend it out. So, I usually roll a little on my fingers and tap it in. It is very reflective, though I don’t find that the color suits me. I will continue to use this product, but I would not purchase the full size. I much prefer the CoverFx Custom Enhancer Drops in Celestial.

The second highlight included was the Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal. I have to say, I am in love with this one! It is so soft and creamy and it applies like a dream. It is described as a “golden opal pearl” and it just stunning. It is very reflective and a little goes a long way. Plus, this sample size is perfect to keep in your purse or to take when you travel.


Another bronzy product was the Urban Decay Half Baked Eyeshadow Shimmer in Golden Bronze. The one included in this kits is full sized, a value of $19. I really love this eyeshadow color. It is beautiful all over the lid and will make any eye color pop. I like it best when applied with my finger or a damp, flat brush to get the most shine.

Also included is the Radiance Foundation Primer by Laura Mercier. This primer gives your foundation a smooth base while also illuminating the skin. Currently, I tend to prefer more hydrating foundations and primers. I like this primer because it does smooth my skin and adds a beautiful radiance. It is also slightly tacky, which I personally feel like helps to keep my foundation on longer. I love pairing with with my Wet n Wild Photo Focus Foundation.


Now, the this kit included two bronzers but I received a third as a free sample so I decided to include it in this review. The first bronzer is the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer in Luminous Bronze Light. This is another product I was so excited to try because it is so hyped on YouTube. I was also so happy when I found out that it was the lightest shade because I am usually quite fair. This bronzer is more warm toned with a slight shimmer. While I am not convinced it is the right shade for me, it is really beautiful. I love the formula and it looks wonderful on the skin. I am debating trying out the Radiant Bronze Light as it looks a little less orange.

The second bronzer is the Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer in Medium/Deep. First, this bronzer smells amazing. It’s just like chocolate. I was so scared this would be too dark for my skin tone. However, I really love it. It is more of a cool tone and if I go in with a light hand, it is perfect. I love this travel size because I can take it with me wherever I go.

The bonus sample I received is the Benefit Hoola Quickie Contour Stick. Hoola is a cult favorite bronzer, but one I have yet to try because of how warm it appears. I love using cream contour, so i was excited to give this cream to powder stick a try. First, I feel like the name is misleading. I would never use this as a contour because of how how warm it is. That being said, I enjoy using it as a bronzer. If used sparingly and really blended out, it is beautiful.


Included in the kit was a Nars Shimmer Lip Gloss in Orgasm. Now, the product included was full sized and at first I really enjoyed this gloss. It is pigmented and the color is beautiful. The formula is also smooth and not too sticky. However, I soon realized that it reminded me of another product that I have: the Covergirl Katy Kat Pearl Lipstick in Apricat. To me, they are so similar that I could never justify spending $26 on the Nars Lip Gloss when the Covergirl Lipstick is around $8.

The final product in the glow bag was the Tarte Brazilliance Plus+ self tanner. When you buy the full size, you also receive a mit. I didn’t do my whole body because of the size of the sample, but I did test it out on my arms. It gave me such a beautiful fake tan. I definitely will be purchasing the full size soon.


Though it doesn’t count as a product, I also really love the bag that was included. It is so pretty and fun for summer. Overall, I loved this Sephora Favorite Collection. Just counting the 3 full sized products, that bag is valued at $75. Considering I received 6 other samples and a bag, all while paying $45. I have to say, these little bags are great deals.

What are some of your favorite products to achieve the perfect summer glow?

Xoxo Sammie

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It Cosmetics: Confidence In Your Glow

It Cosmetics is known for their good for your skin makeup products. They do everything from foundation to eyeshadows to skin care. If you are looking for a product, chances are they have it. I first fell in love with the It Cosmetics Confidence in a Compact. Since then, I have also fallen in love with their CC+ Cream. When I first saw their take on the neapolitan face palette, I knew I had to have one. Originally, I bought the Instant Natural Glow. But, I recently won the entire collection, including the special brush, from Serein Wu. So, I just want to give a big shoutout to her! She is an amazing Youtuber and blogger. You can check her out here.


Here is the description of the products according to the It Cosmetics website, “from the sensorial experience of the fresh orange scent to the powerful vitamin C-infused radiance-boosting and brightening formula, Confidence in Your Glow™ transforms the look of your complexion with high-performance, anti-aging ingredients and talc-free, ultra-luxe pigments. Combined with proprietary Drops of Light Technology™, your skin will feel instantly softer and smoother with a younger, airbrushed appearance! Developed with plastic surgeons and perfect for all skin types and tones, this compact is truly your one-step wonder for your most beautiful-looking skin.” There are three different shades in this collection as well as the Heavenly Skin One-Sweep Wonder Brush #705.


The first, and lightest, of the compacts is Instant Nude Glow. The website describes this product as being perfect for achieving “the softest, sheerest naturally pretty glow.” I would describe the highlight as a light champagne color. The blush is a nice peachy pink and the bronzer is a soft warm bronze.


The only palette that I bought myself was the Instant Natural Glow. This compact is perfect “for a natural rosy kiss of radiance and natural boost of warmth.” The highlighter here is a little more pink tones. The blush is definitely rosey with a light, more cool toned bronzer.


Finally, we have Instant Warm Glow. On their website, it is described as “your richest shade of bronzer for the deepest color payoff, with a gorgeous peachy-pink flush for your brightening radiance.” This really says it all. The blush is a brighter pink with a darker bronzer and the highlight is a cream color.


The It Cosmetics brushes are unique because they are infused with skin care ingredients. The hair of the brushes are “infused with anti-aging collagen, silk, peptides, niacin and antioxidants.” The Heavenly Skin One-Sweep Wonder Brush #705 was made specifically to go with these palettes. You are supposed to be able to sweep the brush across the palette, from bronzer to highlight, and then sweep the brush across your cheeks back towards the hairline.


While this method does work, it is not my favorite. It is fast and looks pretty on the cheeks, but it does not work to well for bronzing the face. In actuality, I best like the brush for applying the bronzer by itself. It is so soft and blends the product like a dream. After applying the bronzer, I will go back in with other brushed to apply the blush and highlight.


Overall, I really love these products. They are pigmented, creamy and easy  to blend. You only have to barely touch your brush to pick up product. Just make sure to use lightly as the product does have some kick up. On the It Cosmetics website, each palette retails for $32 and the brush for $48. At those prices, I definitely think the palettes are worth it, but the brush is not necessary. However, if you head over to the QVC site, you can get a palette and brush combo for only $35.92. 

Which palette is your favorite? Mine has to be the Instant Nude Glow.

Xoxo Sammie

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Review: Tarte Hybrid Gel Foundation 

I had never really tried any products from Tarte, other than their blushes, until I tried a discovery set from Sephora. I instantly fell in love with all of the products and was itching to try more. Next thing I know, they were offering a promotion. For $63 you got a makeup bag, foundation, blush, eye liner, mascara, lip product and a brush. All of the products are full sized, shipping was about $5 dollars and I found a $10 dollar off coupon. How could I pass up the offer?


Honestly, what I was most intrigued about was the Empowered Hybrid Gel Foundation ($39). Tarte’s websites offers 17 shades and claims it is “a poreless, full coverage gel foundation with skin-smoothing hyaluronic acid.” Since starting isotretinoin, my skin has changed from oil/combo to just dry. So, I’ve been needing something that will give me full coverage while also hydrating my skin.


I heard that a little goes a long way, and that is definitely true. I only needed about half the amount in the picture above to cover my whole face. Now, normally I would color correct the redness in my skin. However, for this review, I skipped this step because I wanted to see how well the foundation would cover. Here is before and after application:Now, the website also claims that this foundation has “tarte 12-hour power” so I decided that’s how long I would wear it for.

All of these pictures were taken in natural light throughout the day. The foundation lasted pretty well till the end of day. As for coverage, I would say it is medium and buildable. All I needed was a few dots of concealer to cover any blemishes. My skin did not get too dry or flakey and I did not have any problems with the foundation transferring. My favorite way to apply this is with a sponge as I found that a brush was too streaky.


I’m very happy with this product. I’m so excited to try all of the other products that I got in the promotion. Tarte continues to impress me and I can’t wait to see what else the brand had in store.

Till next time!

Xoxo Sammie

Ps When my order arrived, it seems that the eyeliner I picked was not included. I emailed the customer service team on Saturday night and had a response by the next morning. Their team was a dream to work with and they shipped my product out the following Monday. The shipping was so fast, I received the package Tuesday afternoon. Their customer service truly impressed me!

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Origins #MyPerfectWorld Launch Party

You may have noticed by now, but I love natural skin care. So when I received my last Voxbox from Influenster, I was stoked! It was full of goodies from Origins. If you are unfamiliar with Influenster, it is a website where you can review products and qualify to receive more products for free in exchange for honest reviews. You can get more information here.


In this vox box, we received 5 products from Origins: Checks and Balances Cleanser, Ginzing Moisturizer and Eye Cream, High Potency Night-A-Mins and the Clear Improvements Mask. Honestly, I would be lying if I didn’t say that I’ve fallen for all of these products. Here is some quick reviews:


Check and Balances Cleanser: this is honestly my new favorite Cleanser. I even bought the full size. It smells amazing and leaves my skin feeling clean without being too dry or feeling tight.

High Potency Night-A-Mins: how cute is the name? As for the product, it smells great as well. I find that it is very moisturizing and does not clog my pores. However, this may be too heavy for some.

Ginzing Moisturizer: I really liked this cream and have used it every morning. It feels really fresh and helps perk up my skin. However, it may not be the best choice if you struggle with oily skin.

Ginzing Eye Cream: amazing! This cream actually helps to illuminate my under eye and moisturize. It is light weight and really gives me that “I just slept 8-hours” look even if I spent all night studying.

Clear Imporvements Mask: now, I have used a ton of charcoal masks and this is the only one I can say is truly amazing. It is comfortable to wear and does not overly dry my skin out or make my face feel tight. The real magic is when I wake up the next morning. I always see a noticeable difference in any breakouts I am having.


Now what was different about this Voxbox was that there was a VIP event. We were invited to come to the store to try products, chat and have fun! Let me just say, the store was so beautiful! I loved the natural and wanderlust vibes. Plus, how cute is the essential oils wall?


First, we were treated to free mini facials. It was so relaxing! Let me tell you, it was the perfect way to end the week. The women working there were very knowledgeable and so helpful. 


After masks, we all chatted and ate cupcakes and took tons of photos. There was a woman there that was doing tea leaf readings, so I figured why not give it a a go? I was very skeptical and was careful not to tell her anything other than my name. I wasn’t wearing my wedding ring or anything  because I was curious if she would give me the generic “you will find love” story. However, she was able to tell me a lot of things that were actually happening in my near future. It was so freaky! I was pleasantly surprised and it was fun.


Overall, I am so happy and thankful to have been a part of this vox box and to be invited to such a fun event. I really enjoyed the products I received and even picked up a few more. I highly recommend all of these products and definitely suggest checking out Origins. Some are a little pricey, but they do sales and email discounts. Plus, I honestly believe that good skin care is worth the investment.

Happy Wednesday!

Sammie

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