L’oreal

Model Monday: Barbara Palvin

Image via fashiongonerogue

20-year-old Hungarian model Barbara Palvin began her work at age 13. In less than a decade, she’s skyrocketed to the top of the modeling world. She’s shot covers for her native Hungary’s editions of Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Instyle, and Vogue, French and Turkish L’Officiel, Spanish Harper’s Bazaar, Russian Vogue, and Italian Marie Claire, to name a few. She’s been shot by established photographers such as Miles Aldridge,
 Plavin is best known for being a Victoria’s Secret model, but she has done campaigns for brands such as Armani Exchange and H&M. In 2010, she hit the runways for the first time as an exclusive model for Prada during Milan Fashion Week. She’s graced the runway for top designers, like Emanuel Ungaro, Jeremy Scott, Louis Vuitton, Mui Mui, Nina Ricci, and Vivienne Westwood. 
Palvin is also a face of L’Oreal. 
Being a face of a commercial cosmetics brand, it makes sense that Palvin is partial to L’Oreal when it comes to her own makeup. She loves the brand’s foundation, BB cream, and mascara, as well as their Superliner Blackbuster Intense eyeliner and Rouge Caresse lipsticks. 

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FotD:Job Interview Makeup

*Photos coming soon!*

Yesterday, I had a job interview at a majorly cool restaurant in my city. I love the young, cool energy of the place, so I wanted to look fresh and natural. I relied on a lot of my favorite products to help give me a professional look (and most of them are from the drugstore).
While I love makeup, hair is something I’m less apt at. Since I applied for a position in the kitchen, I decided to pull my hair back into a simple, sleek top knot. I’m so nervous and excited for this job, so putting in effort to my appearance gave me an extra boost of confidence and one less thing to worry about during the interview.
What are your favorite safe for work products?

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Model Monday: Coco Rocha

Image via cocorocha.com

Coco Rocha is easily my favorite fashion model. She’s so beautiful, poses like a queen, and can sell any garment or product. But what I also love about Coco is her infectious spirit and hint of rebelliousness–she’s no stranger to a gorgeous purple lip or super winged out eyeliner. 
The Canadian beauty began her career in 2004. Since, she has appeared on the cover of Vogue, as well as five international editions, plus W, Elle, and Harper’s Bazaar. She’s done ad campaigns for Balenciaga, Chanel, Dior, Dolce & Gabbana, Calvin Klein, Lanvin, Longchamp, and Zac Posen, to name a few. She’s walked the runway for top designers, such as Jean Paul Gautier, Isaac Mizrahi, Zac Posen, Matthew Williamson, Carolina Herrera, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Christian Dior, Donna Karan, Chanel, and Versace.
She’s also crossed over a bit into TV, appearing on Project Runway modeling a contestant’s design as a challenge winning prize, assisting the models on America’s Next Top Model with a posing challenging, and mentoring a team of aspiring models alongside Naomi Campbell and Karolina Kurkova on season 1 of The Face.
So naturally, someone with that much star power has landed a few beauty campaigns as well! Coco has done beauty modelling for luxury makeup line Yves Saint Laurent as well as budget friendly drugstore brand Rimmel.

Images via mimifroufrou and pier59


Coco has kept her laid back attitude despite massive fame, even doing her own makeup for several red carpet events. Being a model, she’s picked up tons of tricks from pro makeup artists like Pat McGrath and integrates them with her unique aesthetic. And to top it off, she has no problem sporting makeup from the drugstore. So what are some beauty products Coco loves? Here’s a few:

  • Smashbox Eyeshadow in Oyster
  • Maybelline Dream Mousse Foundation
  • L’Oreal Magic Smooth Souffle Foundation
  • Maybelline Great Lash Curved Brush Washable Mascara
  • MAC Technakohl Eyeliner
  • Lancome Effacil Gentle Eye Makeup Remover
  • Lubriderm Daily Moisture Moisturizing Lotion
  • Dove White Beauty Bar Soap
You can score Smashbox, MAC, and Lancome from any department store, and every local drugstore can satisfy your Maybelline, L’Oreal, Lubriderm, and Dove needs.
Sadly, I couldn’t find out the exact brand or shade of fabulous purple lipstick Coco loves to sport. But if you want a similar look, MAC Heroine, or limited edition Lavender Whip should get the job done. For a cheaper option, many have raved about Cover Girl Divine.

What do you think of Coco’s fierce makeup looks? And is there another model you think I should cover next Monday? Let me know!

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L’Oreal 24HR Infallible Eyeshadow in Glistening Garnet Review

Image via Amazon

**Unfortunately, my camera is broken! Since money is tight right now, I don’t know when I’ll be able to get a new one. Personal images/swatches will be up ASAP, but that could take a while. I’m so sorry for and disappointed by this inconvenience. Thank you beauties for being patient with me in the meantime.

I had heard a lot about L’Oreal Infallible shadows, and was especially intrigued since they seemed similar to some high-end shadow formulas that have come on the market in the past few years. I don’t have any experience with the designer products, but this L’Oreal shadow left a good impression.
Color:

Glistening Garnet is a lot more pink (and a lot less garnet) than the name or online swatch would have you think. It’s a cool, jewel-toned medium pink-burgundy with a satin finish and a slight gold sheen. (It was slightly more rich and true to pan with primer). It’s pretty, but not the most unique shade on the market. For a makeup junkie, my stash is comparatively light, and I have 3 lookalike shades (you can see comparison swatches at the bottom of this post). (4/5)

Wear:
Whether or not you use a primer doesn’t matter with this one! Either way, it wore beautifully for a solid 8 hours. This makes it a viable option for slap-on-and-go color if you’re in a rush. (5/5)

Formula:
To the touch, the powder is soft and smooth. When applied over bare lids, it was smooth, opaque, and even, like a MAC shadow. This went on a wee bit stiffer over primer–I needed to go back for more product to cover the whole lid because it didn’t want to budge from where I initially laid it down (this made blending a bit less dreamy, but still not problematic). This shadow was still vibrant, gorgeous, and easy to use, even with a base. There was also no fallout, fading or creasing. (4.5/5)

Packaging:
Infallible shadows come in sturdy plastic jars with screw on lids. It doesn’t feel expensively heavy, but could probably take a beating, although it doesn’t seem immune to cracks if accidentally dropped. The window that shows the color is actually the bottom of the product. The packaging is square, but the pan is round. There’s also a plastic stopper included, which I thought was a luxe and functional touch. (4.5/5)

Price:
Drugstore shadows are known for their bargain prices, and this line is no exception. It sells for $7.99 USD each, and contain 0.12 oz of product (so $66.50 per ounce). That’s more product for less price! For reference, an average shadow is about 0.05 oz, and a MAC shadow could cost you $300 an ounce. Plus, the quality is very high for drugstore, at half the price of more expensive brands. Definitely a solid deal! (5/5)

Wow Factor:
What’s unique about this shadow is the powder: it’s not wholly pressed, but it’s not loose either. It won’t fall out if you turn the jar upside down, but when you dip a brush in, it separates in a way that’s reminiscent of a loose powder (so more kickup than your standard pressed powder). Plus, the color payoff and texture are all high quality, given the price. (4/5)

Overall:
I really like this shadow! While the one I picked up wasn’t the most unique, there’s enough variety in the collection–and good enough quality from the one I’ve seen–that I’d want to try others from the range too. The powder is smooth, soft, long-wearing, and opaque. (4.5) A-

Availability:
-L’Oreal is available at drugstores and specialty shops, like Ulta.

Useful Information:
-There’s 18 shadows in this range, including Glistening Garnet. There’s a good mix of neutrals and brights.
-All the shadows seem to have the same satin finish, so on this end, there’s not much variety.
-L’Oreal is notorious for their staunch opposition to cruelty-free practices. medianet_width=’600′; medianet_height= ‘250’; medianet_crid=’228266391′;

MAC Eyeshadow in Star Violet Review + Swatches + Dupes

This is my own photo.

MAC Eyeshadows are easily my favorite on the market. Star Violet was the first one I picked up, but it wasn’t quite love at first swatch. I spent hours (yes) at the MAC counter looking for a bold, unique shade (not a “natural, nude makeup look” kind of girl), and finally settled on this baby after seeing it’s burgundy flash gold. Buuuuut, when I got home, I initially found it a dupe for Urban Decay’s Last Call. (They’re actually not that similar). So I didn’t use it for a while. However, like all MAC shadows I’ve tried, the quality is great and it’s actually a really lovely shade.
Color:

MAC describes this shade as a “pinky-brown plum.” This description isn’t bad. The warmth and sheen in this shadow is more golden than brown, which sounds dirtier than this shade is. Its more burgundy than plum, which brings to mind a cooler, purpler shade. Star Violet is distinctly not purple/plum/brown. I feel comfortable labeling this shade “rose gold.” Without a base, this shadow is a soft, warm rose gold. Over primer, the pinky rosiness is more pronounced, making it look true to pan. (4/5)


This is my own photo.
Wear:

SV went on opaquely with and without a base, and gave me no application issues, like fallout, patchiness, or creasing. It wore very well, lasting six hours before I had any issues (at that point, I had some sparkle fallout, both when a base was used and without a base). By the 8th hour, there was some minor fading. (4/5)


Formula:

Star Violet is in the veluxe pearl finish, which promises to be “vibrantly toned, velvety soft, shimmeringly metallic,” and “overlaid with high-shine pearl.” This was an apt description, and the shadow made good on all claims. This definitely has a reflective finish. The powder feels soft and smooth to the touch. There’s a little bit of powder kickup when a brush is used, but this isn’t much and doesn’t translate to powderiness on the lid. The product blends easily without sheering out. (4.5/5)


Packaging:

SV comes in standard MAC packaging–a metal pan in a small, circular black plastic case with a flip-top lid and clear window to see the shade inside. The brand is emblazoned across the clear window and the product name and texture is on the bottom. The packaging feels sturdy but light–nothing luxurious or shatter-proof if you were to accidentally drop it. While the size is small enough to travel with, the pan is large enough to use easily. This packaging is functional (easy to store/travel with/use) but also economical: I like that there’s no unnecessary plastic used, just enough to surround the product. (5/5)


This is my own photo.
Price:

MAC shadows are $15 USD each, and contain 0.05 oz of product ($300 per ounce). While the brand is slightly more affordable per ounce than comparatively priced brands, I realize that the cost is still out of a lot of consumers’ price range. As I often state, MAC makes good quality products, so if you love the shade, splurge. (5/5)


Wow Factor:

I was impressed by this shadow’s complexity, it’s deep pinkish base with gold duochrome. It really plays well in the light. It’s excellent quality, pigment rich, soft, applies like a dream and wears great. However, it’s not the most unique shade on the market, didn’t hit the ideal mark with wear time, and had a little bit of fallout. Great, but not perfect. (4/5)


Overall:

This is a great shadow that I’d recommend. I think Star Violet has versatility: the pinkiness playing up cool, fair skin, and the rich pigment and gold warmth would work well on deeper, warmer complexions. There’s enough product to last awhile, the texture, opacity, wear time, and application are all great. (4.4) B+


Availability:

MAC is available at department stores, and online at their website.

Useful Information:

-MAC does not test on animals unless “where mandated by law.”
-MAC products are not vegan (and include ingredients like beeswax, carmine, and lanolin).
-MAC is a brand that gives back! Their Back 2 MAC program offers you a free lipstick if you return six empty product containers they can reuse for environmental friendliness. There’s also the MAC AIDS Fund, which donates 100% of the sale price of their Viva Glam products to improve the lives of those struggling with HIV/AIDS worldwide.

Dupes:
-L’Oreal Infallible Eyeshadow in Glistening Garnet
 (slightly lighter, less gold reflection, less expensive, closest dupe.)

Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Last Call (cooler, pinker, less gold, more expensive.)
Shiro Loose Eyeshadow in Heart Attack (Richer, bluer, cooler, no gold/duochrome, silver/blue glitter, cruelty free, vegan, less expensive. Best used wet. The powder looks like it could be a dupe for Star Violet, but actually isn’t. Don’t be fooled!)

This is my own photo.

What do you think of this shade? My makeup stash is pretty small for a beauty junkie, and I was able to pull out 3-4 dupes. Those with larger collections probably have more. Know a dupe I missed? Love the shade? Hate it? Let me know!

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Face of the Day 03

This is my own photo.

One of the things I love about makeup is the ability to play. You can reuse several products to achieve different results, or combine an eyeliner with a different shadow color, or pair a new gloss over a long loved lipstick an achieve a wholly new effect. Today, I use some of my tried and true favorites paired with new loves and achieved a look that I ended up really liking.
This is my own photo.

Here are the products I used an the order I used them:

Maybelline Color Tattoo in Too Cool all over the lid.
-Shiro Cosmetics Loose Eyeshadow in Detective all over the lid.
Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Junkie on the lower lashline/waterline.
Maybelline The Falsies Mascara on top lashes only.
ELF Blush in Pink Passion on the apples and blended towards the temples.
Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter in Strawberry Shortcake
-Avon Brow Pencil


I don’t usually rock liner on my lower lashline, but since the shadow has a strong glittery effect, I didn’t want the color to compete with it. So I tried it down below and loved the results! I mentioned in my review that Detective dries sheerer than it applies, and once I got Too Cool I knew instantly I’d love the way the two would look together. The results are as lovely as I expected! Here’s a pic to show you how it really glitters (sorry for the fallout!)
This is my own photo.

Isn’t it lovely? What makeup did you rock today?

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How-to: Do a Full Face Without Brushes

You might be wondering, “why on Earth would anyone want to do their makeup without brushes?” While it’s true that quality cosmetics brushes are worthwhile investments, some people just don’t have the interest, time, or means to do so. Or maybe you’re travelling, and–worst-case scenario, you’re travel makeup bag gets lost and you need to restock on a few functional products.

There’s an upside to this unconventional cosmetic practice: creams can be multipurpose (just make sure your products are safe for use on the eyes, lips, and cheeks before trying–not all products can go everywhere). Using a few key products can lend to a full face (and without those brushes and powders, it can save a ton of space in your travel makeup bag, and wallet, too).

So, here’s PV’s guide to getting a full face, without a brush in sight (feel free to skip steps that don’t apply to/interest you as necessary).

1) Foundation.

           
Images via Drugstore and Sephora

Fortunately, foundation is one of those products that is often applied with the fingers already. Pump or dab a small amount onto the back of your hand, then use your fingers to apply to the face, starting with where you want the most coverage and blending outwards. I love L’Oreal Visible Lift Absolute Serum Foundation ($14.99 USD), but I’m dying to try Laura Mercier Silk Creme Foundation ($45 USD) as well.

2) Concealer.

             
Images via Beautylish and Sephora

Concealer is another one of those products that is commonly blended out with the fingers, and most come with built-in applicators. In fact, I’d say it’s more difficult to find one without an applicator! So with this step, apply concealer to any problem areas (acne, undereye circles, etc) as needed and dab with a finger to gently blend. I rely on my Maybelline Mineral Power Natural Perfecting Concealer, (about $6.94 USD) but Yves Saint Laurent’s Touche Eclait ($41 USD) is a popular choice.
3) Eyeshadow.
Images via Drugstore and Nordstrom

Many people worry about applying cream shadow to their lids due to fear that it will crease. However, there are many cream shadows on the market that are tried and true. They wear so well, in fact, that many use specific brands’ cream shadows as a primer for their powders, they’re that resilient against creasing! I love Maybelline Color Tattoos ($6.99 USD), but MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pots are an industry standard and fan favorite ($20 USD). Use your ring finger (or a cotton swab, if you’re concerned about contaiminating the pot) to grab product, then dab onto the center of the eyelid and blend outwards. 
(Psst, Maybelline’s Too Cool Color Tattoo is sheer enough to be lightly worn as a face/brow highlighter too!)
4) Blush.

Images via Maybelline and Sephora

Cream blushes add an especially lovely flush to the face because the warmth from your fingers melts the color a little bit, helping it flawlessly adhere to your skin. These products tend to run sheerer, too, so they translate to really lovely color on the face. Simply swirl your finger into the product, swirl onto the cheek, and blend outwards. I think Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blush ($7.99 USD) isn’t bad, and Tarte Cheek Stain ($30 USD) looks great.
5) Then apply liner, mascara, and lipstick/gloss as usual!
Or, if you’re really strapped for time/cash/patience, use multipurpose products!
Images via Sephora

Cosmetics brands know they have consumers with busy lives who want no-fuss products that will still help create the looks they want. NARS The Multiple ($39 USD) is ideal for this kind of person. A cream to powder product that’s safe for use on the eyes, cheeks, and lips, the Multiple is multipurpose color packed in a functional stick that’s easy and convenient to travel with. The shade range is impressive, too, so one of these babies in a darker shade could function as your bronzer for extra sculpting. Benefit Benetit ($30 USD) is also up this alley, with a bottle of color with a brush-on applicator that enhances both cheeks and lips. 

What do you think? Would you ever forego your makeup brushes?

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L’Oreal Visible Lift Serum Absolute Foundation Review

Image via Drugstore

When I was first getting into makeup, it was imperative that I picked up a decent foundation. “Decent,” to me, meant something that would add life to the face and make me look fresh, while still looking natural. Since I wanted to cover my freckles, I knew a sheer formula wasn’t right for me. Since skin makeup wasn’t that big of a deal to me then, I wanted something affordable. That’s how I walked away with L’Oreal Visible Lift Serum Absolute Foundation.

Coverage:

I found the coverage to be light-medium to medium with a slight dewy finish. My freckles are not very dark, and this did blur them without masking them completely. I was blown away by the pore coverage when I first tried this on (as I didn’t even think to hide them in my amateur days!). This gives a smooth, flawless base to work with, and looks like a china doll’s skin without looking too fake. Despite having more than sheer coverage, this foundation doesn’t feel heavy or like a mask. (5/5)

Wear:
This foundation wore really well. After a full day, my skin looked smooth, even and bright. My skin also had nice texture throughout wear time. Although, this can appear a wee bit cakey in areas such as the corner of the nose when applied, but it’s so faint that you’d only notice if you were looking very closely for it in particular. (4.5/5)

Formula:

The selling point of this foundation is that it has anti-aging benefits. (I’m only 21, but I figured prevention is the best treatment!). It also has SPF 17. It claims to have 24-hour hydration, but I didn’t notice a difference, negative or positive. This foundation has a thick enough texture to keep it from being runny but it’s not too heavy. It blends in easily (as promised), with only 2-3 pumps needed to cover the whole face. It adds brightness, smoothness, and evenness to the face without breaking me out. This does have a powdery scent that lingers, and can get faintly cakey in certain places, though. (4.5/5)


Packaging:

I thought this foundation’s packaging was nice, especially considering the affordable price. It comes in a hefty glass bottle with a soft curved design that feels more expensive than it is. I like that unlike most other foundations on the market, this one comes with a pump. It’s not only convenient, but I notice it doesn’t spurt out too much product, so it’s not wasteful. However, product can get stuck in there and come out clumpy the next use, so take care to wipe off the mouth of the pump once you’re done. Directions and ingredients are also printed on the bottle in a pull-down sticker tab. (4/5)


Price:

I picked mine up at Target for $14.99 USD. The bottle contains 1 fluid ounce, which is an average weight. Like most L’Oreal products, it’s not the cheapest at the drugstore, but as far as foundations go (which tend to run pricey overall), I think it’s considerably affordable. Plus, for the quality and accessibility, I think it’s worth the price. (4.5/5)


Wow Factor:

What impressed me the most about this formula was definitely the smooth, airbrushed finish it gave. It made a dramatic difference in the texture of my skin without a primer or anything to boost it’s leverage. It also has SPF, great brightening effects and semi-buildable coverage, all pluses. I like that it looks slightly expensive and comes pre-equipped with a pump. It’s breathable and feels natural. The only drawback-the thing that stops me from repurchasing!-is that the strong anti-aging ingredients are too harsh for my sensitive skin. 😦 (4.5/5)


Useful Information:
-If you have sensitive skin like I do, the potent anti-aging formula can cause a burning sensation during application.
-There are 12 shades in this range, severely limiting the number of people who could find a match for their complexion.
-L’Oreal tests on animals.
Overall:

I really, really liked this foundation! I feel like it does it all: evens, brightens, protects, prevents wrinkles, smooths, you name it. I’m saddened it was too harsh for my skin, because I really like the finish it gives to my face. Apart from my sensitivity, I have normal skin, so I don’t know how well this may fare on dry or oily skin (although if I had to take a shot in the dark, I’d say the caking might get pronounced on dry patches, but oilier skin may fare better, since this foundation isn’t too glowy). I’d definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a great base to enhance their skin texture by blurring pores and adding life and smoothness. 4.5 (A-)


Availability:
L’Oreal products are available at drugstores and cosmetic shops like Ulta.

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Sweet Makeup for Valentine’s Day!

Valentine’s Day tends to bring several things to mind: flowers, sweets, and hearts. Whether you’re coupled up this holiday or celebrating your own fierceness, makeup brands have plenty of goodies to treat yourself to that match the romantic theme. To get you lovelies in the holiday spirit, I thought I’d share the sugariest, rosiest cosmetic delights to make your holiday a little sweeter. Consider it my gift to you, Valentines! xoxo

Flowers:

Image via Walgreens

1) Milani Illuminating Face Powder ($9.79 USD) 
These blushes/highlighters are embossed with a girly rose pattern, making the pan as pretty as the color on your cheeks. There’s also talk of Milani repromoting their limited-edition Coming Up Roses blushers, which feature one large rose print, versus the small several blooms seen in the Illuminating Face Powders.
Image via Beautylish

2) Flower Beauty
This line of cosmetics was founded by Drew Barrymore and is available exclusively at Wal-Mart. I love both Drew and cosmetics (obviously!) so I’m dying to try things from this line. The Kiss Stick High-Shine Lipstick (pictured above) range looks sleek for drugstore, and all the shades are named after flowers (the one shown is Morning Glory). The line is fully-developed, with products for face, eyes, lips, and nails. Let me know if you’ve tried anything from this range and what you thought of it!
Also check out: Benefit Dandelion ($28), Benefit Posietint ($30), Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Cream Shadow in Cool Lilac ($24), Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in Rose ($42), Bobbi Brown Lip Color in Carnation/Rose, ($25 each), Clinique Cheek Pop ($21), Dior Rosy Glow Healthy Glow Awakening Blush in Petal ($44), Dior Dior Addict Gloss in Bed of Roses ($29.50), Guerlain Rouge Automatique in Cherry Blossom ($36), Lancome Rouge in Love Lipcolor in Roses in Love ($28.50), L’Oreal Colour Riche Extraordinary Lip Color in Rose Melody ($9.99), MAC Eyeshadow in Beautiful Iris ($15), MAC Lipstick in Fleur D’Coral, Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte in Rose Culte ($35)
Sweets:
Image via Fragrantica

1) Vera Wang Princess ($45-75 USD)
Who doesn’t want to smell delicious on date night? This fragrance is my favorite scent, very feminine and sweet, without being overpowering. The tasty notes in this scent make it perfect for a romantic occasion like V-Day. Ulta’s site claims the tasty top notes in this scent are water lily, lady apple, mandarin meringue, and golden apricot skin, followed by pink guava, Tahitian flower, wild tuberose, and dark chocolate, then finally pink frosting accord, precious amber, forbidden woods, royal musk captive, and chiffon vanilla. Say it with me: “Yum!” I’d still recommend this to those that don’t like food scents, as the floral in this notes water down any food flavors, so the fragrance smells quite balanced.
Image via Drugstore
2) Revlon Lip Butters ($7.49 USD each)
Like most beauty bloggers, I’ve sung the praises of these cute little lippies. And now I recommend them one more time. Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to sport a girly lip color, and this line has you covered, no matter what your confident-lip-look is (for me, it’s pink, so I adore Cupcake, pictured above). Not only is every shade in the line named after a sweet dessert or fresh fruit, but the hydrating formula will keep your lips kissable ’til the end of the night.
Also check out: Benefit Lollitint ($30), Benefit Sugarbomb ($28), Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in Nectar ($42), Bobbie Brown Lip Color in Brownie/Blackberry ($25 each), Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey ($15), Cover Girl Eye Enhancers 4-Kit Shadows in Sugar Coated ($5.99), Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment ($22.50), Lancome L’Absolu Rouge in Champagne ($30), Lancome Rouge in Love Lipcolor in Pink Bonbon ($28.50) Lavanilla Fragrances ($19-58), Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in Espresso ($21), MAC Eyeshadow in Blackberry ($15), MAC Lipstick in Candy Yum Yum ($16), Philosophy Cinnamon Buns Shampoo/Shower Gel/Bubble Bath ($17), Too Faced The Chocolate Eyeshadow Palette ($49), Too Faced La Creme Lipsticks ($22 each), Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Vanilla ($18), Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte in Peach Passion ($35) 
Hearts:
Image via Sephora

1) Too Faced Sweethearts Perfect Flush Blush ($30 USD)
These blushes have made a splash since they appeared in the beauty blogosphere. I haven’t had a chance to try them, but the tri-hued powders look large enough to use separately or swirled together. Either way, the powder looks adorable, not just for the candy colors, but in the sweet heart-shaped tin, too.
Image via Sephora

2) Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Throb ($17 USD)
For me, Illamasqua’s bread and butter product is their nail varnish line. Why not coat your nails in fierce, classic red this holiday? This lacquer line is on the pricey side, but this heart-hued red is the perfect accent to your romantic date look. 
Also check out: Cover Girl Lip Perfection Lipstick in Sweetheart ($6.99), Cover Girl Eye Enhancers 4-Kit Shadows in Pure Romance ($5.99), Edward Bess Ultra Slick Lipstick in Tender Love ($32), Illamasqua Powder Blusher in Lover ($26), Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Crush ($26), Kat Von D Everlasting Blush in Heartagram ($25), Kat Von D Shade Shifter Eyeshadow in Love Letter ($16), Kat Von D Everlasting Love Liquid Lipstick in L.U.V. ($19), Kat Von D Foiled Love Lipstick in Valentine ($19), Lancome Rouge in Love Lipcolor in Sequence of Love ($28.50), MAC Eyeshadow in Parfait Amour ($15), MAC Lipstick in Amorous ($16), NARS Blush in Amour ($30), Philosophy My Heart to Yours Shampoo/Shower Gel/Bubble Bath ($17)

What are you planning to rock this Valentine’s Day? Let me know!

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Maybelline The Falsies Mascara in Very Black Review

Image via Allure

I had heard lots about Maybelline The Falsies mascara, so when I finally got my hands on it for my birthday, I was excited to see what all the fuss was about. While it doesn’t live up to the “false lash” claim, I was surprised by what good things this mascara had to offer. 
Color:

The packaging touts the formula as being “very black.” It darkened up my naturally brown lashes and looked distinctly black, not sooty or grayish. It’s not a stark, matte black; it has a richer dimension. (5/5)


Wear:

This mascara certainly passed this test! It lasted all day (8 hours) without clumping or drooping. The curl held the entire time, and the lashes remained fanned out and separated. It didn’t flake, run, or smudge, either. (5/5)


Formula:

The Falsies is designed to be a volumizing mascara. While I did notice fatter, longer lashes, the results in both categories were slight (and not as dramatic as Colossal Lash). If you’re really after the look of false lashes in a tube, this product won’t deliver. However, what stood out to me in a very positive way was how separating this mascara is. Each lash looked neat, combed through, and defined, and remained that way throughout the wear time. It also holds a curl (from a lash curler) nicely. Unfortunately, this is the only mascara so far that has a scent that I don’t like. It has a bizarre bitter element to it that’s not pleasant, but also not strong or noticeable unless you deliberately sniff the tube. It feels like a drier mascara (think Cover Girl Lashblast), but layers like a very wet mascara (meaning, it clumps to high heaven–best to wear this one on it’s own). (3.5/5)


Packaging:

While the purple and blue color scheme is cute, I noticed that the tube feels lighter and cheaper than Colossal Lash does. The wand is flimsy and a bit large. But the spoon shape really hugs each of the lashes, coating them with an even layer of product, and separates them into a nice fanned out shape. It also reaches those tiny baby hairs in the inner corner somewhat easily. (4/5)


Price:

This mascara retails for $6.99 USD. This is equally priced to Maybelline’s other mascaras, and for drugstore, it’s a little on the less-expensive side (popular formulas Cover Girl Lashblast and L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes are both $8.99). So for what you get for the price (a nice, natural daytime mascara with excellent definition), I don’t think the Falsies is a bad investment. But if you’d like to notice a bit more of a difference in your lashes, I’d spend the $7 on a nice drugstore lippie instead and spend the few extra dollars and purchase a more “dramatic” mascara instead. (Often, Maybelline is buy one get one half off at Ulta, so if you’re on the fence with this product like I was, you can snag it at an even lower value). (3/5)


Wow Factor:

The real beauty of this mascara lies in it’s separating prowess, it’s curl definition, and staying power. However, (apart from the waterproof claim, which may have lended to the excellent wear), this product didn’t capitalize on those high points–it was marketed as being dramatically volumizing, giving the look of fake lashes, and it just doesn’t do that. In fact, it looks the opposite of false–it appears very natural and everyday, the kind of thing to rake on in a rush and rely on to look neat and presentable. Of course that’s not bad, it’s just not what the consumer would expect from looking at the product, which makes it a bit of a disappointment. (3/5)


Overall: 

I would recommend this mascara to someone looking for an easy, “good enough” mascara that they can use again and again. It wears phenomenally and lends superior separation to each lash. But it doesn’t layer well, so it’s just about impossible to get the dramatic effect of false lashes with this alone. It’s good to pick up on a half off sale but I don’t think I’d pay full price for it. Since it’s so difficult to layer with, and I prefer length to volume, I don’t believe I’ll be repurchasing once I use this up. If one was stuck between the two, I would easily recommend Colossal Lash over the Falsies, any day. (3.9) C+

Maybelline products are available at drugstores, and specialty stores like Ulta.

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