Wow! Has it really been two months since my last post?! I cannot believe how fast the fall went and that Christmas is already behind us! I’m sorry that I’ve been so absent, although if you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you’ll see more updates from me on a (pretty much) daily basis. To say that I’ve been busy, and really haven’t we all, is an understatement. With work, holiday celebrations, family and just plain LIFE, my “free” time has been pretty well sucked dry. However, as we approach the New Year I wanted to set some new goals for myself. I want to be more active with my blog- the way I used to be when I first started FOUR YEARS ago. Yes, that’s right. We just passed my 4 year blogiversary. I’m feeling like I’ve let you all down because of how absent I’ve been- but rest assured that is going to change. I also started filming YouTube videos again this year. I hope to do even more of that into 2015 as well.

Anyway, enough of my rambling. Let’s get to the good stuff. My favorite products of 2014. I tried to keep this as edited as possible and only include items I used A LOT. As in, for many weeks. Usually in a row. Let’s start with the more boring base products.

2014 Favorites Base

Primer/Powder/Concealer. I did actually finish my MAC Natural Radiance primer and it’s worth noting that I really enjoyed it. It was a recommendation from Karen over at Makeup and Beauty Blog and I can’t thank her enough for turning me on to it. However, as beauty lovers do, I am perpetually looking for the “next best thing.”

Too Faced Hangover Primer.  It’s soothing like skin care but smoothing like a primer, and it smells like coconut :). It feels like a drink for my skin.

Becca Ever Matte Poreless Primer. Since my skin is decidedly combination, I also have areas of my T-zone that need some mattifying. For that I use the Becca Ever Matte Primer. I lightly pat this onto my forehead and around my nose. It does a great job of keeping shine at bay, but it doesn’t keep me completely matte throughout the day.

Dr. Jart+ Water Fuse BB. By far the best BB Cream I have tried. I also tested another one from this line, but it broke me out. I’ll stick to this version. It’s lightweight, wears well and evens out my complexion without looking cakey.

MAC Face & Body Foundation. This was by far my most used foundation of the year. It’s easy to build up or wear as a light layer. They have a wide range of shades and it sits so nicely on the skin. My favorite way to apply it is with a beauty blender. :) I have several bottles to mix and match my shade throughout the year.

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer. I resisted trying this for a loooong time. Believe the hype about this product. My tube is almost gone (it lasted me around 3 months). The coverage and consistency is perfect for under the eyes. It doesn’t cake up and it does have a brightening effect. I’ll be repurchasing soon.

Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder. This is a simple, cost-effective setting powder that I dust over my T-zone pretty much on a daily basis. It doesn’t have a fragrance and it doesn’t look cakey. Did I mention it’s less than $5? ;)

2014 Favorites Face

Face Products.

Clarins Splendours Bronzer. I picked this up in 2013, but it’s remained one of my all-time favorite bronzers for its color, texture and design.

Edward Bess Daydream Bronzer. This is a late-comer but has been on my wishlist for ages. I only got it a few weeks ago, but I haven’t been able to use anything else since. I understand why this came on such a high recommendation. It is the perfect bronzer color and the formula is beyond. It has a nice fragrance to it.

RMS Living Luminizer. Easily my most used highlighter of the year. You can see just how much of a dip I have put into it. It’s natural, slightly subtle and just makes your skin glow. It’s not shimmery or glittery. It’s the most appropriate highlighter for anyone anywhere. Period.

Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight. If you read my initial analysis of Candlelight (and the RMS one) you are probably wondering why it’s being featured here. The answer is simple; it’s all in the application. I finally found the correct brush (Real Techniques small tapered) to apply it. It’s fool proof. Glowy enough to be noticed, but subtle enough to make people wonder just what makes your skin look so healthy. Believe in the magic of this powder, because it does exist.

Guerlain Meteorites Perles d’Etoile. These are easily my favorite Meteorites I own (I have 4 shades in total). I love the gentle luminosity they give my skin, and the gold tin with pinky-red pearls just gives it something a little extra.

Chanel Joues Contraste in Jersey. Otherwise known as the blush I couldn’t put down. I have such a serious love affair with this blush. It reminded me of how much I fell for Chanel’s Rose Ecrin. It’s so wearable, soft and gives the perfect amount of definition to your cheeks without being over the top. Just plain LOVE. I blame Rachel from Makeup Never Sleeps fame for enabling this purchase.

Amazing Cosmetics Blush in Pink Chocolate. Natalie from Flowerbomb31 on YT inspired this blush purchase. I bought it earlier in the year and kind of tucked it away for awhile. I rediscovered it late in the summer and had such a hard time reaching for something else…especially during #30blush (which I meant to do summary post on, but haven’t….yet). It’s a great formula and the color is, as the name implies, a rosy-brown tone that is effortlessly flattering.

2014 Favorites Eyes

Eyes

Tom Ford Eyeshadow Quad in Cocoa Mirage. This was my very first Tom Ford Quad.  I absolutely love the silky formula and this quad in particular is so versatile and useful to me on a daily basis. I can use it on it’s own, or pair the matte shades with other palettes or singles. I’ve made dents in the pans!

Charlotte Tilbury Fallen Angel Palette. If you buy nothing else from my entire list of favorites, please, do yourself a favor and get this. No, I mean, stop reading, open a new tab and order this palette. It’s stunning. I can’t speak for the permanent range of Charlotte Tilbury shadows but this palette is hands down the best eyeshadow purchase I have made this year. All of the colors are pigmented and blend like a dream on the lid. The shades are dimensional and the formula is reminiscent of a gelee. Except, I experience ZERO fall out with these. I’m in LOVE.

Benefit Gimme Brow. The lazy girls guide to no-time-for-this brow enhancement step 1- Use Benefit Gimme Brow, step 2- See step 1.

Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper. Game changer for winged liner. The best liquid eyeliner I have used to date. Beats out Marc Jacobs, Stila and Lancome. You need to try this.

Laura Mercier Caviar Sticks. Pictured above are two of my most used shades, Sugar Frost and Sand Glow. I have tried pretty much every eyeshadow in stick form on the market: Urban Decay, Sephora, Mally, MAC, Chanel, Marc Jacobs, By Terry….the list goes on. The ones I return to again and again for the wear time, color selection and  reflective quality are the Laura Mercier Caviar Sticks.

Dior Mono Fusion Shadow in Mirror. This shade is so sparkly and such a dainty gold. It’s really unique to my collection and I can use it layered over other shadows to transform them or wear it on it’s own. It’s not very pigmented, but it gives your lids such a stunning glowing sparkle that it’s beauty just cannot be denied.

Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Liner in Espresso Ink. This was my first Bobbi Brown liner and I quickly picked up another shade after falling for the formula. It’s the right mixture of dry and pliable. What I mean is it’s not at all goopy or messy. It’s easy to work with, sets quickly and the shade is perfect for everyday wear.

2014 Favorites Lips

Lips

Dior Addict Extreme Lipstick. This remains my favorite lipstick formula of all time. It’s comfortable, has a decent wear time and the colors are all gorgeous. I love the shine these leave and how luxurious they feel both in the tube and applied. The shade pictured is Cherie Bow (a long-time wish list item after seeing it on Tiffany from Will Work For Makeup) but I couldn’t possibly pick a favorite shade.

Dior Addict Lipgloss. It’s no surprise then, that Dior also makes my favorite lipgloss formula. Shine, comfort and luxury come together for the best gloss out there (at least for my tastes). If all of my other glosses went away and I only had Dior Addict glosses left, I wouldn’t be mad. ;)

Chanel Glossimer in Seashell. This has sentimental value to me. I bought it on my honeymoon (we got married on the beach earlier this year) and it always takes me back to the beach that day. I hope they never discontinue it! It’s soft and girly and smooth. No stickiness, just shine.

Becca Ultimate Colour Gloss in Pink Lotus. A bright pink coral that is a dream to wear and apply. It’s not too much, but just enough. it took my from spring to summer with ease and I never wanted to put it down.

Clarins Instant Light Lip Perfector. This is not the first time this has been featured in a yearly favorites. I actually think it’s the 3rd time! One of the easiest lipglosses to wear alone or over anything. Any shade will do (I own three and they all function the same) and you will always find one in my handbag.

Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick in Fig. This shade is so perfect. It really is my ideal everyday lipcolor. It’s slightly rose, slightly pink and absolutely face-brightening. The formula is nice and creamy, and not at all drying.

Fresh Sugar Lip Balm in Tulip. This was a new shade for this year and I am SO glad I picked it up. This lip balm is top of the top. It’s so silky and I keep one with me at all times. I have several shades, but this one stands out as a favorite for it’s bright pink color that instantly perks up the complexion.

Lip Per-fekt.* The lovely people at Per-fekt sent this to me months ago and it’s remained a staple in my bag ever since. It has a minty-fresh scent and feels slightly cooling on contact. It’s a grab-n-go formula that applies slightly glossy and with plenty of natural-rosy pigment.

That wraps up my favorite products for this year. And what a year it was! I also have to mention some of my favorite beauty Youtuber’s. I watch videos while I get ready, while I paint my nails, etc. Thanks for making my laugh, enabling me and keeping me so entertained! <3

Andie from TechnoCupcake (We actually got to meet and had a shopping day together Love love love!)

Sam from LipstickLady518 (Her personality is just so infectious! Her taste in makeup is just beyond!)

Tara from Tarababyz (Epic hauls, in-depth reviews and so down-to-earth)

CarrotFlowers (Oddly enough, I don’t know her real name! I love her hauls, humor and taste!)

Sara from Hapagirl8 (This is a more recent discovery but I love her voice, her style and of course, her makeup picks!)

Leslie from LipglossLeslie (Her bubbly personality is charming and I could watch her videos all.the.time).

Michele from Michele1218 (I have watched Michele for 4 years. Her favorites are my favorites and she’s just very classy).

 

Happy New Year!!!!

The first day of Autumn is just around the corner and I couldn’t be more excited. While I enjoy the summer, it’s been quite hot and humid here for about as long as I can tolerate. I prefer the fall with the cool breeze, changing colors and warm soups! I love the weather when you need to throw a sweatshirt on to go for a walk at night.

In celebration of fall I went through my makeup and picked out the shades for eyes, lips, cheeks and nails that I always wear this time of year. I am going to start with my favorite- blushes!

DSC_0139

Shown: NARS Madly, Hourglass Mood Exposure and Laura Mercier Mocha Spice

In the fall I tend to go for similar colors for lips and cheeks. Nudes, berries and rosy tones make up the majority of my choices for both categories. I think I reach for nudes more because I tend to amp up my eyes more in the fall. These three shades are all very nude, in my opinion. None of them are completely matte, which I like. Nude shades can be harder to blend into the skin without a satin finish or a bit of sheen. It makes it more skin-like.

DSC_0142

Shown: Tarte Blushing Bride, MAC Stark Naked, NARS Mata Hari, NYX Raisin

Not all berry shades have to be intimidating. They can be a berry pink, have a mauve tone, etc. that make them easier to wear. MAC Stark Naked was limited edition (NARS Sin is somewhat close) but the rest are readily available. Mata Hari was a surprise for me when I bought it years ago because I expected it to be a summer color. While it does look great with a tan, Mata Hari is a chameleon. It has just enough mauve/murkiness to it mixed with the right amount of berry pink. It’s a must have for me.

DSC_0145

Shown: Illamasqua Sin, NARS Mounia, Becca Raspberry/Opal

While you can certainly use more sheer tones, it’s also fun to throw in some of those really pigmented colors that can imitate the effect of the cold. Illamasqua Sin and NARS Mounia are perfect for the fall. NARS Mounia was discontinued awhile back, but try a shade like NARS Taos or MAC Ambering Rose for a similar effect. Becca’s Beach Tint Shimmer in Raspberry/Opal is also worthy of fall must-have status. It’s the only cream product that made my list- but for good reason. The color gives a nice, refreshing berry tint while the highlighting aspect leaves behind a warm and wearable gold sheen. The two paired together are perfection and the formula is wonderful with excellent staying power.

DSC_0150

Swatches from L-R: Illamasqua Sin, NARS Mounia, NARS Mata Hari, Tarte Blushing Bride, MAC Stark Naked, NYX Raisin, Hourglass Mood Exposure, NARS Madly, Laura Mercier Mocha Spice, Becca Raspberry/Opal

Also worth noting are the two highlighters I reach for in the fall season.

DSC_0146

Shown: Laura Mercier Rose Rendezvous and Guerlain Parure de Nuit

Both of these majestic (yes, it’s that serious) highlighters were sadly limited edition. Try another highlighter from Guerlain, like their meteorites perles. MAC has released a highlighter called Superb that is pretty spot-on for Rose Rendezvous. I have some comparison swatches of similar highlighters done here. If you ever spot one of these in a blog sale definitely snatch it up!

That wraps up my favorite cheek products for the fall. I’ll be doing eyes next!

I have been noticeably procrastinating on writing this post. My last year’s favorites were done as a series, divided into categories, and was incredibly time consuming. I will be doing a separate post (check for that later this week) of my yearly favorites showing the products I reached for the most in eyes, lips, face and nails. This post, however, focuses solely on 12 products that I not only loved but that were released in 2012, as well as one product failure for this year.

2012 New Favorites 2

Clockwise from left: Guerlain Meteorites Perles D’Azur by Emilio Pucci, Chanel Joues Contraste Brume D’Or , Illamasqua Cream Blusher Zygomatic, Tarte Clean Slate 360 creaseless primer*, Real Techniques Expert Face Brush

Guerlain Meteorites Perles D’Azur by Emilio Pucci(LE)- I cannot tell you how many times I used these since getting them earlier this year (I believe May?). They became a regular part of my daily routine, adding a touch of glow to my skin without being obvious.

Chanel Brume D’Or(LE)- It was hard to decide between this, Notorious and Fleur de Lotus (all three are gorgeous and lovely in their own ways). But I decided on Brume D’Or because it really added a color of blush to my collection that is the perfect neutral when I have a summer tan. I used this a lot last summer and the color it gave was fabulous.

Illamasqua Zygomatic- Along with the powder blush Naked Rose, Illamasqua added to their blush lineup this year with some stellar shades. Zygomatic is a perfect neutral blush that blends into your skin like a dream, and great for those “no make-up” make-up looks.

Tarte Clean Slate 360 Primer*- The best eye primer I have used to date. It’s about 3/4 gone because I have literally not done my eye makeup without it since receiving it. I like that it comes in squeeze tube form vs. a wand (more hygienic) and it really makes a difference in how my makeup applies and how long it lasts (12+ hours).

Real Techniques Expert Face Brush- I’ve been a fan of these brushes created by Youtube Beauty Extraordinaire Sam Chapman of Pixiwoo. They are synthetic and super soft. They don’t shed and they hold up well to use and washing. This brush was a new release this year and was my absolute most used brush of the year. I use it daily for blending tinted moisturizer or foundation and even my concealer.

2012 New Favorites 1

Clockwise from left: Dior Fairy Golds, Laura Mercier Gilded Platinum, Too Faced La Creme Naked Dolly, Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick Empress, MAC Lipglass Revenge is Sweet, BareMinerals Ready Liner 5am, Urban Decay Mushroom

Dior Fairy Golds Swatches

Dior Fairy Golds(LE)- This was released in Dior’s holiday collection along with Night Golds (another favorite of mine). But between Night Golds and Fairy Golds, I definitely used this one the most. It has a slightly cooler tone to it and is a little more wearable for day-to-day use. The shadows were creamy and pigmented and long-lasting.

2012 New Favorites Swatches

Swatches L-R: BareMinerals 5am, Laura Mercier Gilded Platinum, Urban Decay Mushroom, Chanel Brume D’Or, Illamasqua Zygomatic, MAC Revenge is Sweet, Hourglass Empress, Too Faced Naked Dolly

BareMinerals 5am Ready Liner(LE)- What a gorgeous shade! This was released in their limited edition Night Vision set (which I have yet to review). Let me say I’m absolutely hooked on this formula! This shade was the reason I purchased the set, but I was blown away by the staying power of the liners in general. The black that came with the set is super black and stays on my waterline ALL DAY. Through a workout at the gym, my shower, meetings, errands, traffic…! Might be the best liner formula I have ever tried. Super creamy and easy to apply.

Laura Mercier Gilded Platinum (LE)- A gorgeous platinum shade with high shine and a smooth texture. The pattern? Fabulous.

Urban Decay Mushroom- Urban Decay revamped their eyeshadow formula this year and re-released many shades as singles, and added new ones to their lineup. I had always wanted this shade but it was previously (I think?) only available in their larger palettes. I jumped on this as soon as I saw they had released it as a single and wasn’t disappointed. Incredibly buttery in texture and excellent color payoff, this shadow is worth a look if you don’t already have it!

MAC Lipglass Revenge is Sweet(LE)- I am actually not a huge fan of the lipglass formula in general, however, I have been wanting this particular shade since it was released in the Disney Venomous Villains collection back in 2010 (anyone else miss those days of clever collections?!). I was happy to see it being repromoted in a collection this past November. The formula is actually more tolerable than I remember, not quite as sticky as it once was. The color is sheer, but lovely on the lips adding just a nice kiss of pink.

Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick Empress*- 2012 was the year of the liquid lipstick with several companies coming out with their own variation on the trend. This formula was my favorite. My favorite shade is actually Muse, but I seem to have temporarily misplaced it! The three shades I have all perform the same: long lasting, highly opaque coverage and smooth texture. As with any liquid lipstick/matte lipstick you need to be wary of dry patches on your lips as they will inevitably make those look worse and more obvious.

Too Faced La Creme Drenched Lip Creme Naked Dolly- Actually Naked Dolly is a new purchase for me, prompted by Tiffany of Will Work For Makeup. I originally purchased the shade Juicy Melons back when these lipsticks first launched last summer. It was a go-to shade for me well into the fall. I’ve been into nude lipstick lately so when I saw Tiffany feature this I knew I had to pick it up. Creamy, opaque in one swipe and super comfortable wear this has to be the best new lipstick formula released in 2012 for me.

And lastly, the one product fail for me this past year:

MAC vs Sigma F25 Brush

Sigma F25 Tapered Face Brush- I cannot tell you how much I dislike this brush. I used it and washed it for months before finally giving up on it. It is supposed to be like the MAC 138 (both pictured above). After realizing I would NOT be able to continue using the F25, I purchased the 138. The reason? It sheds… ALL OVER THE PLACE. In my products, on my face, on my clothes, on my counters. Literally every time I used it 5-10 hairs would fall out. I have no idea how it has any hair left at all. Do yourself a favor and skip the F25. The MAC version is softer, much less shedding (only a few hairs when I first washed) and has a better feel on the face. I wouldn’t even give this brush away, let alone sell it in a blog sale. I wouldn’t want anyone else going through the frustration I experienced with it.

Well, after that rant I think I can end this favorites post. Thanks for sticking with me and I hope you have a wonderful week! Feel free to share your favorite new products of 2012 below!

*Items marked with a ‘*’ were provided by PR for review purposes only*

Hi ladies! I thought before I debut my super nail polish swatch-a-thon post that I would do a little write up of some products I have tried and just didn’t like or they just didn’t work for me. Most of these products have been endlessly hyped up on blogs and YT everywhere, which is what led me to them in first place.  Please PLEASE understand that the items that made my list didn’t work *for me*, which is not to say that they are necessarily not able to work for others.  Keep in mind that we all have different skin tones and types and that our tastes may be completely different.

Alrighty, then, with that out of the way, I present the products I regret buying, or that were  “not worth the hype” for me.

  1. Benefit Sugarbomb “blush”

Benefit Sugarbomb- Image from Sephora.com

I bought this in April sometime after seeing video after video of how this was someone’s “go to” blush and was their all time favorite and so on and so forth. I just don’t get it. My skintone doesn’t seem too far from those making that claim so why it *barely* showed up on my cheeks, I won’t know. There was absolutely, positively nothing special about this blush for me. So uneventful in fact that I didn’t even manage to take a photo of it and swatches before I took it back to Sephora. I have $3 blushes from ELF that are better than this. I honestly and seriously cannot see how someone of my skintone could ever wear this as a blush. Someone with VERY fair skin could probably do it, and well perhaps. I wouldn’t be so hard on this blush if it weren’t for 2 things: the hype and the price. I would be ok paying may $5-$10 for this blush. But certainly not $28, which is more than MAC, NARS, Tarte, or Sonia Kashuk which make far superior blushes to this one.

Alternative: Benefit Bella Bamba which is my favorite Benefit blush.You can see my review here.

2.  Dior Amber Diamond

Dior Amber Diamond

Ok, I get it. It’s Dior, it’s pretty, it’s soft, the packaging is cute. But this did not give me that “natural” glow that so many people have talked about this giving. It gave me a more subdued  frosty shimmer. It certainly wasn’t ugly on my cheeks, but it wasn’t any better or any different than my Physician’s Formula Shimmer Strips, which are around $9 compared to Dior’s $44 price tag. In my opinion, this is worth no more than $15-$20 at best, and the rest is paying for the Dior name. Maybe it’s because I had heard so much about it that when I eventually tried it my expectations were so high that it could never possibly live up to it. Kind of like when I finally watched the movie ‘The Ring’ years ago. Climatic build, huge let down. Whatever the reason, I tried it for two weeks and returned it to Sephora. I am not opposed to some day trying out a different shade if they ever choose to make more. But $44 is an awful lot to spend on a highlighter, so when I do drop that cash it needs to be *Ah-mazing* and this just fell very flat for me.

Alternative: Jemma Kidd Dewy Glow in Rose Gold which is by far the best highlighter I own, period, end of report. It gives me the natural glow I want, with the cream formula I love. Or, if you are looking for a powder, try the Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips–they make several shades and they are a bargain at $9.

3.  MAC Feline Kohl Liner

I had heard that this the THE black eyeliner to have. It was the blackest, and therefore the best. Not true, ladies. I don’t normally have issues with liner staying put for me. I use an eye primer and have several liners that don’t budge all day. I am not kidding you when I say that MAC Feline smudges on me EVERY single time I wear it. I end up looking  like a hot mess in short order with this liner. I don’t know what it is about it that either doesn’t last or doesn’t agree with my skin, but it is quite possibly the worst eyeliner it was ever my misfortune to purchase. Unfortunately I still own it because I didn’t realize how bad it was until several weeks into owning it. Trust me when I say you don’t need to hunt this one down. There are so many others out there that work so much better!

Alternative: Urban Decay 24-7 liner in Perversion is just as black and stays put on me on all day. For a gel liner, try MAC Blacktrack fluidline, which does last on me or Maybelline Eye Studio gel liner which is lovely as well.

4. EOS lip balm spheres

EOS Lip Balm Spheres

At first when I saw these cute little “dumplings” I was oh so excited to try them out. I mean, really, I love the presentation. But unfortunately for me, this were all show, and no substance. They really don’t do anything for moisturizing my lips at all. The red one actually made my lips for more dry than they did prior to using it. I don’t think I will ever purchase another because these two were just so uneventful. Unless they change the formula, these are complete duds.

Alternative: My favorite lip balm/chapstick is my Blistex Medicated lip balm. It soothes, protects, and moisturizes. It’s definitely not as cute as the EOS, but it performs like a star.

5 & 6.  Benefit Benetint and Posietint/ Tarte Cheek Stains

Benetint and Posietint

I am sorry, but these were  just plain bad for me. The Tarte Cheek Stains are equally bad on me. I don’t have them pictured here, but I have quite a few minis that have come in sets and the only one I like is ‘Eco Cheek’.  The Benefit ones have a horrendous taste which immediately rule them out for use on the lips. On the cheeks they don’t blend well and they dry so super fast. The Tarte stains are so sheer that you have to keep swiping and swiping for color. They are sticky and greasy as well. They slip and slide on my skin and never quite feel like they have ‘set’. I actually had to dig through my drawers to find them because they are buried in the abyss–which says something about a product for me when it’s at the bottom and the back of the drawer, ya feel me?

Alternative: I actually enjoy the Stila Crush lip and cheek stains immensely and own a couple of them. I can do a review if you are interested. Not budget friendly, but I enjoy the Beaute Flouron stain as well. The Body Shop made cheek and lip stains last year and I picked up an orange-y one. I am not sure whether they still make that shade or the line at all, but it is very nice.

7. Guerlain Meteorites

Guerlain Meteroites in Beige Chic

Ahh, one of the single most disappointing products ever. When I just entered “make up addict land”  MakeupAlley was the place I found first, because mostly I was looking for plain vanilla swatches. This product was one I saw frequently on there. Girls who had all the shades, loved them etc. So when Sephora (2 years ago?) had a set for sale that included this baby, I snatched it up, full throttle. Actually, this has a bit on sentimental value because I bought it in Vegas :)  at the Sephora just outside the Venetian. But upon trying it I could not see what so many others see in this product. The price is outrageously expensive, and again I think this is more “paying for the name” than anything else. I think the price is around $56 for a full size. Are you kidding me? Plus, I really *really* don’t like the smell of them. I would never buy another of these.

Alternative: Physicians Formula Happy Booster Translucent powder gives me the glow I thought I would get with Guerlain. Plus, the smell is 100x better. Better still is the fact that it costs around $11.  :)

8. Rimmel Fix & Perfect Foundation Primer

Rimmel Fix & Perfect

I don’t know that this can fall into the category of  “Hype” or not, because I don’t know that I have really heard a lot about it. What I can tell you is that this is a truly awful product (my experience) and I would never recommend this to anyone, especially oily/combination skin ladies. It did nothing in the way of smoothing or making my face feel more ready for foundation in the way of other primers, like my beloved Guerlain (review here). It made my face feel worse and like I had this heavy layer of moisturizer that was quite greasy. It was cheap and performed poorly. I really ought to just throw it away. I just have a problem wasting it. Do you ladies get this way too even if you absolutely hate something? Blech.

Alternative: Certainly loads more expensive, but I love my Guerlain primer. For a more budget friendly option, try Laura Geller Spackle ( I really enjoy this) or Smashbox Photo Finish primers.

9. MAC Nail Polishes

MAC Polishes Mean & Green, Bad Fairy

I can’t say whether it’s MAC’s formula or whether it’s me but these are probably the worst polishes for wear time ever. They chip so easily! It doesn’t matter what kind of top coat or base coat I try, they never last. When OPI, China Glaze and Essie are half the price and last 3 times or 4 times as long there really is no comparison. This is one MAC product I have zero interest in. The colors are gorgeous, but I expect (who knew) to be able to at least get through one day without any wear ‘n’ tear on my nails. Never happens when I wear MAC polishes, which is why I haven’t touched them at all in 2011. <—-not kidding :(

Well, I suppose I will end with that. Mostly, I have had fairly good if not great experiences with makeup and beauty products. The occasional fail does not stop my quest or my love for trying new things! I think it’s important to remember that beauty is subjective and ultimately lies in the eye of the beholder. How about you, what products have you tried that didn’t meet your expectations?


01. 05. 2011

Hello ladies! Happy May! It was an awful, wet and cold April. I am looking forward to May in a big way! More sun, warmth, and of course…flowers! :) I really get into gardening, and my lavender is already green again and growing and so are my Irises! I love growing my own herbs and different flowers. I will definitely share pictures along the way this spring and summer!

I wanted to pull together all of the items I have been using pretty much daily so you can get an idea of what I am “obsessing” over at the moment.

Dish of Obsessions!

  1. DDF Oil-Free Moisturizing Dew: I have finally found my HG moisturizer in this. It was a 100 point perk on Sephora.com, and it sounded interesting. Before using my points on it I read the reviews and people with oily skin were RAVING about this product. I knew I had to try it after that, being an oily/combo skin gal myself. This stuff feels amazing on the skin. It never feels greasy or oily or anything like that. EVER.
  2. Guerlain Meteorites Primer: I have already reviewed this here, but cannot say enough how much I enjoy using this product. And use it I do, every single day. I really feel like this gives my skin that added boost of luminosity and smoothness.
  3. Tarte Amazonian Clay foundation and MAC Pro Longwear Concealer: My HG foundation and HG concealer are never far from reach. After trying numerous of each, I have finally settled into happy land with these two essentials. Let’s face it, if you don’t have these two right, you can’t be fully happy with your makeup, at least I can’t!
  4. MAC Quad: I finally got the brilliant idea that keeping all of MAC shadows in 15 pan palettes is great for saving space, it isn’t the most conducive to using the shadows on a daily basis. So I took four of my favorites and plunked them into this quad. I don’t use them all together, but sometimes I do use just this quad for my eye makeup. Patina is great all over the lid in a rush. I love using Nylon on the upper lid and blending Mystery halfway onto the lid and into the crease for a grey smokey look. Soft Brown can and is used in many, many looks to blend out harsh edges.

    MAC Shadows L-R: Nylon, Patina, Soft Brown, Mystery

    T-B: Stila Kajal Topaz, MAC Sharkskin, JK Dewy Glow Rose Gold

  5. Jemma Kidd Dewy Glow: Although more recent to my collection I can already say that I am 100% in love. After trying it out I promptly returned Amber Diamond as this gives the same effect but in my preferred texture! Those of you who prefer creams and liquid highlights to powder will definitely want to give this a go! I got it in the shade Rose Gold.
  6. Stila Kajal Liner in Topaz: I have never really liked white on the waterline (except certain special circumstances and looks) I prefer more of a nude liner there. Having struggled to find something to stay the course on the waterline I finally settled on Topaz during the latest F&F sale at Sephora. I have used it everyday since and I am so impressed with the staying power! Keep in mind that my eyes are not watery and I don’t suffer from allergies so this may affect your results if you do.
  7. MAC Sharkskin Shadestick (Disc.): Found at a CCO in Orlando earlier this year. I had wanted it for some time and was delighted at finding it. I recently re-discovered it upon digging through my collection one day. I use an eyeliner brush and swipe it on my eyes. I have no problems with it staying put. Much more brightening than a black liner!

    Tarte Clay Blush in Flush

  8. Tarte Clay Blush in Flush: Ahh, long lost love. When I first discovered my love for these blushes back in February I went on a spree and snatched up 6 shades right away. To my dismay I haven’t had a chance to play with all of them that much because, yes, I have several other new blushes to try as well. Flush is gorgeous! It was one of the first two I chose (the other being Tipsy) for good reason. You should check this shade out if you haven’t already!

That wraps up my current obsessions, save for two things: my new favorite mascaras! I am saving those for a separate post, coming right after this one! I can’t wait to share these with you guys because I am really excited about these two products!

Do we share any obsessions? What products do you find yourself reaching for day in and day out?