Category: Reviews

Review: Sunday Riley Effortless Breathable Tinted Primer

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I know a couple of big-name bloggers have just written about Sunday Riley Effortless Breathable Tinted Primer, but I’ve actually had mine for about a month now. I was waiting on a full evaluation before writing about it, but I’ve hinted at it a couple of times. Unlike the people who are now rushing out to buy it because of Anna and Kate (and no shame in that), my purchase was made due the usual: Lisa Eldridge. (And, yes, I’ve made the tag. 🙂 )

I mentioned that I have been wearing my By Terry Cover-Expert basically every day, except for the few days where I feel like wearing a little less. And the Effortless Breathable Primer is what’s been less. Only, I would never call it less, because it’s so so much on its own.

Sunday Riley Effortless Breathable Tinted Primer (more…)

The Search for the Perfect Red: Surratt Mégalomane Automatique Lip Crayon

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The search for the perfect red has led me on to Surratt Mégalomane Automatique Lip Crayon. I’ve been dying to try this for ages, so I’m pleased to share my findings!

If you’ll remember, I initially thought I wanted the Surratt Alluring Automatique Lip Crayon (described as “a perfect red”), but when I saw them in person, I decided on the Surratt Mégalomane Automatique Lip Crayon (described as “a blue red”). I still think they are the counterparts to Ruby Woo and Russian Red, so we’ll see about that…

Surratt Mégalomane Automatique Lip Crayon
Here she is!
Surratt Mégalomane Automatique Lip Crayon
Right, this is why I usually do it in the backyard…I can’t see anything! Am I in the photo?

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Review: By Terry Cover-Expert Foundation

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I mentioned in passing that I’ve been trying out different foundations to become my new every day base, and By Terry Cover-Expert Foundation is definitely the front runner.

By Terry Cover-Expert Foundation (more…)

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Review: Illamasqua Neutral Palette

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I first ran across the gorgeous bronze-y, antique gold shade in the Illamasqua Neutral Palette in this post, and I pretty much decided then and there that it needed to be in my life. Then I got lured in by the Chanel Charming Palette (damn you, Lisa Eldridge [just kidding, I love you, call me]), and it drove all thoughts of the Illamasqua palette out of my head. Well, after returning the Chanel palette, I wandered over to the Illamasqua counter and righted this terrible wrong. And now this goodness is in my life.

Illamasqua Neural Palette
Illamasqua Neutral Palette – $46.50

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New Holy Grail product alert: Sunday Riley Good Genes Treatment

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2014 is starting off with a bang. (And I told you it would be the year of Sunday Riley!)

I’m bringing you a new Holy Grail product post, just as I’m testing and putting through their paces not 1 but 2 more! (Unprecedented!) At this rate, the rest of the year will have a lot to live up to!

Like so many of my recent beauty interests, I started looking into Sunday Riley because of Lisa Eldridge and this tutorial. The day that my face was highjacked by the Sunday Riley makeup artist at Barneys, she recommended a few of their skincare products for me, but didn’t mention this. My curiosity was piqued by seeing her use it and then seeing it was a lactic acid product. (Again, something Lisa Eldridge recommends.)

So when I went to Sephora to get some samples, I made sure to get some of Sunday Riley Good Genes to try.

Helloooooo gawgeous!!
Helloooooo gawgeous!!

Honestly, at first, I wasn’t sold. I was using the REN Resurfacing AHA Concentrate at night and noticing some improvements in the red marks left by my really bad breakout. The Good Genes was going on top of a lot of other things, and I wasn’t noticing that it was really doing anything.

But the directions for the AHA Concentrate say to use it 7 days on and 7 days off, and so after the second round, I had a thought. All the reviews of Good Genes said it helps your skin look better and glow. The description on the web site was similarly effusive:

Everyone wants the unmistakeable look of having “good genes”. This amazing treatment is formulated with key ingredients which will plump fine lines, reveal brighter, newer skin, and improve circulation, offering a smooth, vibrant complexion. Long term use will restore damaged skin, reduce hyperpigmentation and acne scars, reduce the depth and number of lines and wrinkles, even out skin tone, & increase epidermal firmness and thickness.

So I stopped layering it on top of a lot of other things and started putting it on directly after toning at night. And the next morning I woke up and went, “Woh.” And the next morning. And every morning I wake up and go to wash my face and notice it looks a little better every day. My red marks are now so faded that only I would notice them, because I look that closely.

It’s has a nice creamy consistency and feels really nice on your skin. It tends to drink it up. Sometimes I do feel a bit of a tingle, but nothing too bad. All the Sunday Riley products have strong scents, and for a while, this was my least favorite of all of them—it’s a bit herby—but now I really love the scent and enjoy putting it on. (I enjoy putting all of them on, it’s bad. I’m getting addicted and it’s an expensive addiction!)

I went back to the Sunday Riley counter a couple of weeks ago for something else, and the person there that day gave me a lot of skincare samples. He recommended the Good Genes as my moisturizer for day. But I have found that when I use acid exfoliators during the day, it stimulates oil production in my skin, and it winds up looking oilier a lot faster.

Just to test this theory out, I did an experiment yesterday using all the new products I’ve recently adopted that have left me practically shine free the whole day, and used the Good Genes as well. And, yep, definitely more oily. So I will stick to using this at night, but boy, am I glad I found it!

It’s going to set you back, I won’t lie. (But not as much as the Bionic Anti-Aging Cream!!) But it can be found at Sephora, which means samples can be found. I always advocate testing out products before investing, if you can. But I have found this one to be worth the money. I’m finally not embarrassed to not wear foundation again!

Have you used Good Genes? Any Sunday Riley products? What are your holy grails?

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Mini Haul: NARS Coeur Battant, Bad Behaviour, and Palais Royal

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I know I’m ages behind on the NARS Guy Bourdin Collection products, but things happen. 😉 The colors really spoke to me, but I was going to be good and skip it, until I watched this tutorial.

And, this is super dumb, but I added in an extra NARS item I wanted (again, thanks to Lisa Eldridge,) because there as a gift with a certain purchase amount, only it turns out after I ordered the offer had changed overnight and I didn’t need to buy it. But I’m not sorry. 🙂

DSC_1562-2 1. NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Palais Royal 2. NARS Guy Bourdin blush in Coeur Battant 3. NARS Guy Bourdin Cinematic Eyeshadow in Bad Behaviour

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The Search for the Perfect Red: YSL Rouge Rock lipstick

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It may be a new year, but this is not a new pursuit. I’ve felt it my sworn duty to seek out all the best red lipsticks to try and find the elusive “perfect” red. This is clearly a selfless pursuit. Clearly. I’m just doing it for all of you.

I recently sold a lot of my knitting yarn, and decided that I was going to use a little bit of it to try a new one. I couldn’t resist after seeing it on Le Simone Blog (here and here). So, welcome to my menagerie, Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Pur Couture The Mats in Rouge Rock (#203). (Say THAT 10 times fast!)

YSL Rouge Rock lipstick

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Review: Haus of Gloi Pumpkin Butter and Lip Balm

Acheté Échantillon

I was turned on to Haus of Gloi by Rebecca of HelloPrettyBird when she reviewed their products, and had to immediately go out and buy some of my own to try. I am a sucker for products that smell liked baked goods. Or flowers. Or fruits. Okay, fine, good-smelling products are my weakness all around.

Haus of Gloi is a two-person owned company producing vegan bath and body products and perfume oils. Basically, if you use their stuff, you wind up wanting to eat pastries all the time, but in a good way.

DSC_1677

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Review: Surratt Autographique Liner

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Confession time. On one of my visits to Barneys New York, I caved and finally purchased something I’d been wanting for a while. Not the $75-dollar lipstick. This one was more affordable.

I’ve been lusting after celebrity makeup artist Troy Surratt‘s new makeup line, Surratt, since what seems like forever (but is actually just mid-October). In particular, even more than the  Automatique Lip Crayon in Alluring, which is supposed to be a look-good-on-everyone red, I wanted to try the Autographique Liner.

I was fascinated by the description of how it was inspired by calligraphy pens and contains a similar capillary system. An important point to me was the point, which is fine and made of nylon, not felt. I really do love the Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner, but the felt tip does tend to lose its sharp tip and get fuzzy, which causes the straight line you’re trying to draw to have a ragged top edge.

Also, the Autographique Liner is refillable. So your initial purchase may be $42, which is a little high, but when you use it up, you’re only buying an $18-dollar refill.

It's a thing of beauty, really
Sorry, I know the aperture got fuzzy on the tip, but you can still see how sharp it is.

I have a sort-of dysfunction when doing a cat eye/flick because of my downward-turning eyes (the same reason I am loving my new eyelash curler). I have followed all the tutorials for how to know when and where to do the flick, and every time, my liner comes out differently. I just can’t judge the same.

So having my eyeliner tip get fuzzy and ruin my line adds an extra challenge that I don’t need. I was hoping the Autographique Liner would solve at least that problem, and boy has it.

I took another photo of the tip so that you could get some sense of how fine-tipped it is. The nylon tip is not a single piece, the way the felt-tip pens are, but instead made up of individual nylon fibers that thin out. But they also hold their shape, so the tip of the pen is never going to go wonky on you.

A thing of beauty
A thing of beauty

The first stroke of the liner isn’t thick and dark, so you do have to go over it again, but my god is it thin. Paper thin. It really allows for more precision when lining. I still have trouble because of my eye shape, but I’m also able to work in much smaller increments, more precisely, so my flicks still wind up nice and sharp and thin. (Even if they never look the same from day to day.)

I took some comparison photos for you to see the lines that each make with 1, 2, and 3 strokes.

P1000088-2

P1000090-2

As you can see, the Surratt liner wins by far in the first stroke. It’s amazing how thin a line you can draw.

The Autoraphique Liner is a touch more matte than the Stila, which is strangely reflective, though not shiny or shimmery. It just stays looking a little wet. The ink in the Surratt liner also stays more contained where you put it, and doesn’t bleed out as much when first applied, as you can see below.

P1000093-2

The only thing about the Surratt liner that I think can be improved is that it does tend to migrate down/bleed over the day. I have to do periodic checks and wipe off black that has accumulated underneath the flick. The Stila liner stays where you put it a lot better.

Still, for the luxury of being able to work so precisely with my liner, with a tip that is so beautiful it almost makes you cry (seriously, the nylon tip WILL NEVER GET FUZZY AND ALWAYS STAYS IN A SHARP POINT), I have reached for this liner over the Stila liner every day since I’ve had it. And that’s saying a LOT.

Have you tried either of these? What’s your go-to liner? Do you have any suggestions for me for how to line my eyes like a normal person (with eyes that turn down at the ends)?

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Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. For more information, check out my full disclosure policy.

The Search for the Perfect Red: Illamasqua Box Matte Lipstick

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On my continuing quest to find the perfect red,* I decided it was high time I hit the Illamasqua counter. They have an amazing array of colors in their lipstick line, and I had read about Maneater and Sangers, in particular.

(*I’m starting to think there’s no such thing, but more on that a different time.)

Color me surprised that I wound up walking out with a shade I hadn’t even heard of. Box, described as a deep, scarlet red, was actually created by Illamasqua’s creative director, Alex Box, as her signature red lipstick. So it looked like I was in good company!

To the video tape! I mean photos…

DSC_1559

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