I have gone through several phases of lip treatments, balms…the ubiquitous Chapstick.  I have tried many and loved few. EOS lip balms? Totally dried my lips out. Jack Black Lip Therapy? Did basically the same thing as Vaseline for me (though my mom loves it). I always have a tube of Blistex with me, that’s a given, as sometimes I just really need a medicated balm. However, for daily use I really prefer to up the pretty factor in both product and packaging.

Enter Fresh Sugar Lip Treatments. My favorite balm ever.

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatments

I have four of the eleven (yes, ELEVEN!) varieties, including the not-pictured original (colorless) version.

As a PSA- Did you know they just released another shade, called Ruby? It’s on Sephora for VIBs right now (here) the description says it has shimmer to it! I will most definitely be picking that up.

The shades I have so far are  quite pigmented, have no shimmer and have a very consistent formula. The treatment has SPF 15 in it, which is always a plus. As a balm it isn’t greasy nor is it hard. It’s the right blend of smooth and creamy and feels like silk on the lips.

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment Swatches

Swatches L-R: Coral, Rose, Tulip

Tulip is the newest addition to my collection. It’s a nice, bright pop of pink and I have to thank Estee from EssieButton on Youtube for the heads up on the new shade.

All of the shades I have look nice and glossy on the lips, and they leave behind a stain for hours after wearing off. For Autumn I think I will need the Berry or Plum shade!

How you judge a lip treatment ultimately comes down to what you need it to do. If you are looking for something to treat severely dry, peeling lips I might suggest looking elsewhere or sticking to the Original version that isn’t tinted. When used daily I find the Fresh treatments help ward off the really dry and peeling lip situation and gives my lips a nice tint with a bit of gloss. It’s the perfect low-maintenance lip product for a beach bag or purse.

The full sized tubes will set you back $22.50. Steep, but considering the combination of silky gloss, staining tint and smoothing treatment – all working in perfect harmony I’d say it’s money well spent.

Charlotte Tilbury. You hear that name and immediately think… makeup artist…. beauty expert…. or, if you’re like me, you think: luxury makeup brand! Here in the U.S. we haven’t had reasonable access to the relatively new line of products in the past. That’s all about to change via Nordstrom and Beautylish. Nordstrom is having their anniversary sale right now and as part of that they launched an exclusive set. Our first taste into the line was actually my most wanted item: the Filmstar Bronze and Glow palette. Nordstrom offered the palette with the corresponding Charlotte Tilbury brush (more on that later).

Naturally, I jumped at the chance to finally try the brand (right after handing over that forkload of cash- RIP wallet).

Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow 2

The palette had a nice weight and feel to it and certainly looks every bit as expensive as it actually is. The rose gold packaging is a nice, elegant touch.

Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow

Inside you will find a large mirror and two very finely milled powders, silky to the touch and very pigmented.

I was immediately taken with the bronzer or “sculpt” shade. It’s effortless on my skintone, adding just the right amount of bronze and shade to sculpt my cheek bones and give my face a bit of color.

The highlighter is certainly pretty in its own right. It’s not chunky or glittery, just a nice smooth glow.

The next thing I had to do was compare these shades to products I already owned. Would they prove to be *that* special?

Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Swatches and Comparisons

Swatches L-R: Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight, Lorac Perfectly Lit in Spotlight, Charlotte Tilbury Highlight, Charlotte Tilbury Sculpt, Becca Duende Bronzer, Bobbi Brown Bronzer Natural 1

The highlight shade struck me as being not all that unique when I first swatched it. Though it does impart a lovely, believable glow, it’s not exactly ground-breaking either. The LORAC Spotlight highlight is very, very close- ever-so-slightly darker.

The bronzer is a bit more unique. It’s like a mix between two of my favorite bronzers, Becca Duende and Bobbi Brown Natural 1.

As for the brush (not pictured here), well, if you watched my latest video you understand my thoughts here. But to summarize: it’s cheap, reminiscent of a craft store brush and I wouldn’t have paid $5 for it had I had the chance to test it in person. So there.

My first impression of the Charlotte Tilbury brand is mixed at best. The brush was an utter failure. The Filmstar Bronze and Glow palette is nice to have and looks lovely to the eye. I can’t help but think the price tag overshadows what you actually get here and therefore cannot give it my highest recommendation. For now, it’s merely nice to have, but not a must. I will keep you updated if my opinion changes once I have had a few weeks of using it.

Have you tried the Charlotte Tilbury line? If not, what would you love to try if given the chance?

 

I bought some things over the last few months, here is my collective haul and first impressions!

 

I’m back! I was tagged by LipstickLady518 on Youtube (check out her channel, she is a seriously sweet person with great taste makeup!) to do the Summer Obsessed TAG.

 

Enjoy!

 

I have to admit that I take a keen interest in neutral or natural eyeshadow palettes. The super bright shades rarely interest me, but I’m always interested when a new palette of browns, golds and similar hues is released. You’d think by now I’d own every shade known to man- but it seems like every now and then a palette comes out that really takes neutrals to another dimension entirely. Which is exactly what the Kat Von D Monarch Palette did.

KatVonD Monarch Palette

 

The palette consists of warms, cools, mattes and shimmers. The first unique thing is that all of the shades are winners; there isn’t a dud in the bunch. The other thing that makes it different is the color selection. Just when you thought neutrals couldn’t be done any other way!

KatVonD Monarch Palette Swatches

Swatches L-R: Deadhead, Shadowbox, Disintegration, Vanish, Delaney, Killing Jar, Summerfly, Papilio, Wrath, Tiny Death, Telepathy, Entomology

My favorite shades are Telepathy, Vanish, Delaney and Disintegration. All of the shades are pigmented and look the same on the skin as they do in the pan.

You can get this 12 shade palette at Sephora for $46. It has a sturdy cardboard packaging that is nicely decorated and there is a large mirror on the inside.

If you love neutral shades but are looking for something that isn’t run-of-the-mill I think this is a good option at a great price.