MY 5 FAVORITE PRODUCTS UNDER $50

As part of my no-buy year, I’m trying to really get to know and love my collection and starting a “favorite products under $X series” to help me in that process. I’ll be doing posts every month for different dollar amounts, and I’m so excited to dive into my collection in this way. This time, I’m writing about my favorite products under $50. I would love to see your favorites and recommendations for under $50 beauty products in the comments! And, of course, thank you so much for being here, and it would mean so much to me if you subscribe here or on Instagram @liftbakelove for new posts.

Westman Atelier Face Trace Contour Stick in Biscuit ($48)– I’ve included this in multiple favorites posts because I really do love and use it so much.  This is one of my go-tos when I’m short on time and just need to add some color to my face without having to do a lot of work or blending. I own so many cream bronzer products, and always come back to this one as my “I just don’t want to think about it and need something that works” product. I stand by what I said in my 2020 favorites post: if I had to start my collection over, this would definitely be one of the first things I replace.

Auric Glow Lust in Morganite and Selenite ($45) – This product is my favorite for making my skin look amazing no matter what’s going on with it. Even if my skin is dull and dehydrated and not looking its best, Glow Lust will make it look glowy, smooth, and moisturized. Every time I wear it, I instantly feel more confident, especially for video meetings because Glow Lust reflects so beautifully and distracts from anything else going on. Of all of my glowy, liquid products, this is definitely my favorite of the bunch. I use it as a primer, mixed in with foundation, and as a highlighter, and it works amazingly well for all of those purposes.

Auric Glow Lust in Morganite and Selenite

Fitglow Beauty Lip Colour Serums ($42) – I know I write about these all the time, but it’s because I truly love them, and I’m so happy I have so many of them. I use them almost every day. The formula is incredibly nourishing, thick, hydrating, and long-lasting, and I just reach for them so often especially because they work so well as toppers for more matte lipsticks or lip liners. All the shades are beautiful, and I can always find one to match my look. I’ve been really loving Halo and Regal this month in particular, but all of the shades I have get a ton of use. I have 5 full sizes and the rest are minis, and I highly recommend looking out for sales or mini sizes if you’re interested in these!

Fitglow Beauty Lip Colour Serums in Bliss, Beach Glow, Kind, Halo, Ful, Root, Nudie, Gospel, Regal, Cheer, and Juice

Roen 11:11 Quad – This is my favorite Roen quad of the three that I own, and it’s definitely my most used. Each shade is a perfect one-and-done on it’s own, and they are so easy and quick to use. The shade swatched farthest to the right below is my go to for adding a high impact sparkle to any eye look, whether it’s on top of the other shades in the 11:11 palette or any other eyeshadow I’ve used. It just seems to finish off any look, particularly in a world where I want people to see my eyes through a screen. I also really love the Roen formula because it’s so versatile – with a finger, the shades go on incredibly pigmented and intense, but with a brush, you can create a very sophisticated wash of color. They last all day on me with an eyeshadow primer, and I don’t have any issues with flaking or fall out.

Farmacy Honey Halo Hydrating Ceramide Moisturizer ($45) – This is hands down the best moisturizer I’ve tried for my super dry skin. It’s incredibly thick but still absorbs super quickly and plays well with my other nighttime skincare products. It’s been really dry even though it’s solidly Spring now, and I’m so glad I have this to keep my skin hydrated and moisturized. In particular, it’s been saving my dry skin from totally losing all its hydration overnight. I

What are your favorite products under $50? Let me know in the comments below! Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to see here on LiftBakeLove, and thanks for reading! As always, some links may be affiliate links that support the blog, but all reviews/opinions are completely my own and unsponsored.

Pat McGrath Midnight Sun Mothership Eyeshadow Palette Review

As part of my no-buy year, I’m trying to really get to know and love my collection, and part of that is doing more in-depth reviews of products I already have. This helps me spend more time playing with them and learning about why I like (or don’t like) certain products. For this series, I’m planning on doing a full review on each one of my palettes, starting with the ones I have from Pat McGrath. For transparency, I was able to get Midnight Sun for $65 on sale last year, so while I know it costs $125 regularly, some of my opinions are influenced by having purchased it half off. And, of course, thank you so much for being here, and it would mean so much to me if you subscribe here or on Instagram @liftbakelove for new posts.

Even though this is one of the least talked about Pat McGrath palettes, it’s the one I was most excited about. It has 10 shades of varying finishes including mattes, shimmers, and glitters. The color story feels tailor-made for olive skin and brown eyes, and even most the more colorful shades are still ones that I can use.

Midnight Sun shades are swatched and listed below from left to right top row and then left to right bottom row. For transparency, I took this after I swatched these and swirling with my fingers smoothed the shades and took away any signs of usage.
Midnight Sun shades are listed below in order from left to right on my arm

Skinshow Moon Glow – This is one of my favorite inner corner and browbone highlight shades I own. It’s a pale beige with a pearl finish that just finishes off any look with a bit of brightness. The shimmer is very fine so it’s easy to use with any other eyeshadow finish without it feeling like it’s “too much.”

Bronze Eclipse – I love using this as a one and done shadow. It’s a rich bronze with warm undertones and a beautiful metallic finish. It goes on so smooth and easily and blends out like a dream. It’s just so quick to throw this one with a brush to get a beautiful eye look, but I can also mix in some of the lighter and darker shades in the palette for something more dimensional.

Vermillion Venom – This is a warm, deep burgundy red shade in the matte finish. This is the only shade in the palette I haven’t gotten any use of yet. It feels really smooth as I swatch it, so I’m sure it’s a lovely matte formula just like the rest of the mattes in this palette.

Blood Moon 005 – Surprisingly, this is my most used shade in the palette. It’s a beautiful warm-toned, bright sparkly copper metallic glitter. I prefer applying this with a wet brush for maximum impact but it works with a dry brush or finger too (though this might lead to a tiny bit of fallout). It really makes my brown eyes pop and works great as a one shadow look or combined with other shadows.

Jubilee – This is a warm pale gold with a sparkly metallic finish. It’s a bit too light and too yellow for me to use for a gold eyeshadow look by itself, but I find it helps add a brightness to a darker brown look or even something more neutral (like Mac Groundwork) as a topper shade.

Xtreme Dusk – This is a deep cool almost black matte that is a fantastic shade for deepening a look in the outer corner. It’s also great as eyeliner, especially because it’s not as stark as black but still darker than a dark brown. It is richly pigmented , silky, and super blendable without becoming sheer.

Taboo – This is one of the best crease shades I’ve found for my skin tone. It’s a more yellow toned brown that works really well with olive skin. Like the other mattes, it’s incredibly smooth, pigmented, and blendable. I was honestly surprised how much I appreciated this shade.

Wicked Envy – This is a medium-dark olive green that has a slight shimmer to it. Like the other metallic shades in this palette, this is incredibly smooth, pigmented, and easy to use. I love using this as an eyeliner shade because it’s quite a bold color and works really well with an eyeliner brush.

Blitz Violet Orchid – This shade is a cool-toned metallic purple that has flecks of blue in it. While this shade is beautiful, I’ve only used it once so I can’t say much about it. It goes on incredibly smooth and shiny and looks really cool, but I just don’t use purple very often.

Astral Solstice – This might be one of my favorite shadows of all time and is hands down my favorite eyeshadow topper in my collection. This shade is a warm beige that is incredibly sparkly and shiny and is sheer enough to go over lots of base shades. Whenever an eye look is feeling lackluster, I can throw this shade on top, and it immediately feels incredibly special. I’m glad I love this shade as much as I do because I actually own it in two palettes now (this one and Divine Rose) so keep in mind that this is one that been repeated across Mothership palettes.

What other palettes would you like to see an in-depth review of? Let me know in the comments below! Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to see here on LiftBakeLove, and thanks for reading! As always, some links may be affiliate links that support the blog, but all reviews/opinions are completely my own and unsponsored.

Glossier Lidstar Eyeshadow, Haloscope Highlighter, and Generation G Lipstick Review

During the 2021 holidays, I was gifted a Glossier set that comes with a Lidstar eyeshadow, Generation G lipstick, Haloscope highlighter, and Stretch concealer. I have never tried any of these products other than the Stretch concealer (which I love and have posted about many times), so I wanted to take this opportunity to review these staple Glossier products. Before I get into it, I love so many products Glossier makes and a few are even HGs of mine I’ve repurchased over and over again, so the fact that (spoilers) all of these ended up not being perfect for me is not a comment on the brand’s products in general. And as usual, my goal is to provide you with information to make the best purchasing decisions for yourself and the reasons why I might not like something might be why you’d love it! As always, thank you so much for being here, and it would mean so much to me if you subscribe here or on Instagram @liftbakelove for new posts!

Lidstar eyeshadow in Bun, Haloscope in Quartz, and Generation G in Leo

Glossier Lidstar in Bun – I really love how easy this formula is to use and how perfect the color is for a work appropriate one and done eye look. Bun is described as a soft champagne with a gold shimmer, and it’s a great shade of champagne because it isn’t too warm or cool. I can apply and blend the eyeshadow on both eyes in about 20 seconds and haven’t needed to use a brush any time I’ve used this. And initially, I’m always really happy with how it looks. Then, within about a half hour, the shimmer looks a bit faded, and it starts to look patchy. It’s a very different wear experience than other liquid eyeshadows I have like the Lisa Eldridge Liquid Lurex, which stays sparkly and full impact all day. The Lidstar seems to break up on my eyelids very quickly, and I find myself applying other shadows over top to make it look the way I want. I’ve tried it with and without eye primer and glitter glue and nothing seems to help. As a base for other shadows, it works pretty well, but I have so many other eyeshadows that I’d rather use for that.

Haloscope in Quartz and Generation G in Leo

Glossier Haloscope highlighter in Quartz – I love the effect this gives when I take the time to apply it just right. It provides a natural looking subtle glow that is glitter free and looks like I just have healthy skin. But because it has a champagne colored section and a clear section, if I apply it directly to my skin, I end up with a darker streak on my cheekbones and a patch where my blush has picked up under that. Instead, I’ve found it’s really important to either swirl it on the back of my hand first and then pick up with a brush or use a brush to pick it up from the stick before I applying it. I can get away with swirling my fingers in it and then tapping onto my skin but that can also lead to picking up product underneath because it’s a bit sticky. I hardly reach for this because I have so many easy to use cream and liquid highlighters that don’t require really any thought or attention.

Glossier Generation G in Leo – Like the other two products, I love the shade of this product. Leo is a perfect neutral brown that is so easy for me to wear and never looks like “too much.” I’m not surprised that it’s as drying as it is because it’s a matte product, but I find that it’s more drying than the other matte lipsticks I have. I can get away with using the Generation G if I really prep my lips with a lip mask while I’m doing the rest of my makeup or topping it with a gloss. I do appreciate that it’s sheerer than my other lipsticks, which makes it super easy to throw on. It also lasts much longer a lip gloss or balm, so it’s great if I need something to last under a mask. That said, I’d much rather use the Glossier Ultralips for a similar effect of the Generation G with a gloss added on top without needing two products. That way, I get the benefits of all the hydration that comes with the Ultralip formula which I’d rather have even if I need to reapply, since I am very rarely these days going somewhere I really need the lasting power of a lip product.

What products in your collection do you like but don’t use often for one reason or another? Let me know in the comments below!  Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to see here on LiftBakeLove, and thanks for reading! As always, some links may be affiliate links that support the blog, but all reviews/opinions are completely my own and unsponsored.

5 Products that Always Give Me A Confidence Boost When I Use Them

Someone requested this post, and I got super excited about the idea to think about which products give me a boost when I use them. These products are my version of a bold, red lip – when I put them on, I instantly feel more confident and put together. They make me feel happy and ready to face whatever life is throwing my way no matter what kind of day I’m having. As always, thank you so much for being here, and it would mean so much to me if you subscribe here or on Instagram @liftbakelove for new posts.

Roen 1:1 Quad – I love the Roen eyeshadows, but there’s one shade I use the most. The sparkly shade swatched farthest to the right below is my go to for adding a high impact sparkle to any eye look, whether it’s on top of the other shades in the 11:11 palette or any other eyeshadow I’ve used. It just seems to finish off any look, particularly in a world where I want people to see my eyes mostly through a screen. I did a huge presentation that I was really nervous for and covered my eyes with this shade and got so many compliments on it. So now when I’m feeling nervous, I just put on a ton with a finger, and I’m good to go.

Swatches of the Roen 11:11 Quad

Glossier Portrait and Lisa Eldridge Velvet Petal – I thought I wasn’t a pink person at all since I tend towards more browns and roses for my lip shades. Then I tried these two lip products and realized there’s something about a warm, pink lip that just makes me feel amazing. I’ve gotten compliments wearing both of these, and they really brighten up my face. Portrait is my go to for when I want a glossy lip, and Velvet Petal for when I want something matte and long lasting, especially under a mask.

Auric Glow Lust – This product is my favorite for making my skin look amazing no matter what’s going on with it. Even if my skin is dull and dehydrated and not looking its best, Glow Lust will make it look glowy, smooth, and moisturized. Every time I wear it, I instantly feel more confident, especially for video meetings because Glow Lust reflects so beautifully and distracts from anything else going on. Of all of my glowy, liquid products, this is definitely my favorite of the bunch.

Vesca Kissed By Bronzing Powder in Santorini – I’m not a huge powder product user, but there’s something about this bronzer that really pulls a look together. I find this creates a more satin finish which is great for someone like me that wants to look hydrated and dewy while still having something long lasting, especially under a mask. This Vesca bronzer is my favorite for this purpose (and also my favorite powder bronzer in general) – it’s not too orange, feels incredibly smooth and velvety, blends beautifully, smells amazing, and is such a believable bronzer on me. When my makeup is feeling a bit blah, I add this as a finishing touch, and everything feels right again.

Nail polish – Having super pretty, sparkly, fun nail polish on always makes me feel more confident and put together. I have a ton of polishes that I love for this, so here’s some recent ones that made me feel great while wearing them. I could list so many more – let me know if you want to see more nail polish on here in the comments!

KBShimmer Wrap It Up
Holo Taco Bring Me the Teal and Starrily Star Cluster
ILNP Cityscape
Starrily Uranus

What products make you feel more confident? Let me know in the comments below! Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to see here on LiftBakeLove, and thanks for reading! As always, some links may be affiliate links that support the blog, but all reviews/opinions are completely my own and unsponsored.

Lisa Eldridge Liquid Lurex Eyeshadow Review

I own almost everything that Lisa Eldridge has come out with except for her lip liners and foundation and have generally been super happy with the products (including the lipsticks, highlighter, blushes, and lip glosses). When I saw these eyeshadows come out last year, I knew I wanted to try a couple and have been testing them since then for this review. If you’d like to see a full Lisa Eldridge brand run down, let me know in the comments below! And, of course, thank you so much for being here, and it would mean so much to me if you subscribe here or on Instagram @liftbakelove for new posts.

Spoilers: I absolutely love this eyeshadow. This formula is so quick and easy to use. It’s almost like a mousse and feels half way between a cream and a liquid. I’ve tried using a brush and fingers, with and without a primer, and applying directly from the doe-foot and from my hand – nothing I tried didn’t work out amazingly. The formula doesn’t crease and looks exactly the same all day. I tested it on a 17 hour makeup day, and it honestly could have just been applied. I even did an hour and a half long gym session, and it didn’t budge. I’ve used it as one sheer layer, a thicker application, and layered on top of itself, and it looked great all three ways. I love how I have enough time to play with it and blend it out however I want before it sets down. They’re also both some of the more spangly eyeshadows I’ve ever used, which may be the thing I love about them the most.

Angelica (left) and Bianca (right)

Angelica is a rosy bronze that is the absolute perfect shade for me – I feel like I’ve been hunting for this color for years, and here it is. It’s the perfect mix of brown, bronze, rose gold, and metallic sparkle that isn’t too dark or too light. The sparkle really shines against the darker color in a very sophisticated way. I can pair it with almost any blush and lip color, and it looks right at home. If I could only pick one eyeshadow to keep, this would probably be the one.

Bianca is a warm, purply-pink that really makes my brown eyes pop. It also has a very sparkly, almost metallic finish, that makes it one of the sparkliest eyeshadows I own or have ever seen. I used Angelica first and thought that was the sparkliest eyeshadow ever, and this totally blew it out of the water. I was worried it would be too light and pink, but I’m really happy with the color for a brighter look and can’t wear it in the spring and summer. That said, I find that it looks better on me with a crease color and some added depth in the outer corner vs being a true one and done for me like Angelica.

Agelica (Top) and Bianca (Bottom)

The Liquid Lurex Eyeshadow is in the same price range as other liquid shadows like the Kosas 10-Second Eyeshadow ($28). It’s more expensive than the Bodyography Liquid Eyeshadow ($20) and the Glossier Lidstar ($18), but I like the formula so much more than those. The shadows stay pigmented and sparkly all day and don’t fade or crease, but they’re still easy to remove. They also are much easier to work with because of their almost cream like texture. Even if I wasn’t on a no-buy, I wouldn’t get any other liquid shadows because I honestly would rather be using the Liquid Lurex every time. And if I could go back in time, these would be the only two I would get.

Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to see here on LiftBakeLove, and thanks for reading! As always, some links may be affiliate links that support the blog, but all reviews/opinions are completely my own and unsponsored.

July 2021 Favorites

I can’t believe it’s already time to talk through my July favorites, which means we’re more than half way through 2021! I fell in love with a ton of new products this month, but as usual, I only feature products in my favorites that are true favorites that I’ve been using consistently for longer than one month. So if you don’t see something you were expecting based on how much I raved about it, you’ll likely see it in a future post. And as always, thank you so much for being here, and it would mean so much to me if you subscribe here or on Instagram @liftbakelove for new posts!

Phytosurgence Flash Florescence Cream Shadow in Potent Petal – I have used this shadow so many times since I got it that I feel bad for neglecting my other eyeshadows. Potent Petal is described as a  a soft cherry blossom pink with a slight hint of a champagne shimmer, which is perfect for my brown eyes. The formula is the perfect mix between a matte and shimmer shadow so I can use them for a more subtle day time look or build them up to something super multidimensional and impactful. It’s just so easy! I’ve frequently added the their new Flash Florescence Cream Shadow in Orchid Overload for some extra dimensional glitter, and the glitter sticks to these eyeshadows all day. I also love how much time I have to play with these to get them just where I want them on my lids, but then they dry down and stay put (even through some super intense gym sessions). I have also been loving Wild Oak (the other shade I bought), but Potent Petal is my favorite of the two.

Phytosurgence Skin Spark Blush Balm in Simmer – I have been loving the Phytosurgence blushes I got last month, but in particular the shade Simmer. It’s a beautiful bright pink that really wakes up my whole face. It blends so seamlessly and easily into the skin, leaves an impact with such little product, and stays all day. It doesn’t need to be built up but absolutely can be layered. The finish is just glowy enough without being sticky even though it has a balmy, moisturizing texture. I don’t know how they did it, but it’s basically perfect. it’s just really special, especially considering it’s only $17. If I didn’t own so much blush, I would buy more colors (definitely let me know if you want me to review any other colors though – I will grab them if you comment below with a request!).

Glossier Ultralips – I have been loving all of the shades I got – you can see more swatches and comparisons of all of them here. The Ultralips are a pretty pigmented tinted lip balm that has a touch more glossiness than your average balm. I love how moisturizing it is and how long lasting it is (for a lip balm texture). You can also build up the color without anything weird happening like pilling or patching. Glossier says that the formula is so comfortable it’s like “pulling on a buttery-soft, well-loved cashmere sweater”, and I definitely agree. This is like putting on your favorite pair of sweatpants after a long day, but for your lips, and I have been using them so much.

Ultralip in Portrait, Villa, Trench, and Cachet

Farmacy Honey Drop Lightweight Moisturizer – I’ve been loving this in the summer because it’s incredibly lightweight but still very moisturizing. It also sinks into my skin so fast, which I really appreciate when it’s this hot and I don’t want to feel moisturizer on my face. It also layers incredibly well with my other morning skincare without causing pilling. I’m planning on picking up the Honey Halo Ultra-Hydrating Ceramide Moisturizer to try for the winter when my skin gets even drier than it is right now – let me know if you’d like a review!

NBM Cuticle Buddy Color Expression, who does amazing nail polish reviews, totally sold me on the Cuticle Buddy. And for $35, you can get a kit that comes with a great travel nail file, the cuticle buddy, and a full 1oz of nail oil to refill your cuticle buddy with. I think this is just such an incredible value, especially considering how great the oil is. I got the orange (growth) formula which contains tangerine and sweet orange essential oils, and it smells amazing. I’ve been using this every night, and I definitely feel a difference in my nail health and strength. I’m so excited to have found these and am hoping to pick up some of the fun summer scents when they restock. As always, you can use my affiliate code with Shop NBM to get 10% off sitewide: LIFT10. Like all my reviews, everything written is my completely unbiased opinion, and I would definitely be talking about these without being an affiliate (I even wrote this before getting a code and am editing this in afterwards). 

What was your favorite product this month? What would you like to see next on LiftBakeLove? Let me know in the comments below, and thanks as always for reading!

My Favorite One and Done Single Shadows

My favorite eye look to do right now is one shadow all over the lid. It’s super quick and easy, but with the right shades, can still be complex and impactful. These are my favorite six products to use for a one and done look! To easily compare, swatches of all 6 are in the middle of this post if you’d like to jump straight there.

I’ve written about how much I love the Vesca Moonlit Dream Cream Eyeshadows, especially the shade Lyra. This formula is still the easiest cream shadow I’ve ever worked with. They stay blendable for long enough to get your look just right, and then they dry down and don’t crease all day. I’m also still in love with the packaging – it’s super easy to only get what you need, and I don’t have to worry about them drying out. The color Lyra is described as a champagne rose with an iridescent reflect, and it’s the perfect coppery, rose, shiny, glittery, works for day and night color for me.

I just mentioned this Bodyography Glitter Pigments in my April favorites, but it’s quickly risen to the near top of my favorite shadows list. Off the Hook has been my favorite. It’s a beautiful taupe/bronze color that makes it perfect as a one and done shadow, especially when I’m looking for something more neutral than Vesca’s Lyra and with way more glitter impact. Their site says that these are a unique formula that incorporates “the saturation of a loose pigment, the cushion of a cream, and the silkiness of a powder”, and that describes it better than I could. I can throw them on with a brush or finger create a lot of impact and dimension quickly with one shade. They stay all day even with a regular eyeshadow primer, but they work great with a glitter primer too.

I’m a big fan of glittery/shimmery eyeshadows, but sometimes I just want something that’s a super easy matte look. I always rely on the Mac Pro Longwear Paint Pot Eyeshadow in Groundwork for that. It’s a neutral taupe that goes with any blush and lip color I’ve chosen. The formula is incredibly easy to work with and doesn’t require a primer because these are a hybrid primer shadow. It doesn’t crease and stays all day without fading. I know this formula and shade has a lot of hype around it, but it’s my only matte cream shadow for a reason – it’s really the best.

When I want something warmer and brighter, I always reach for the Laura Mercier Caviar Stick in Rose Gold. I’m not a huge fan of eyeshadow sticks because they tend to dry out on me and become hard to apply and blend. I’ve never had that issue with any of the caviar sticks I have, and the rose gold one in particular has continued to be reliable for much longer than I expected. Like the rest of the shadows on this list, it’s super easy to blend and stays all day. I particularly like this one for travel since it’s compact and I can swipe it on, quickly blend with my finger, and then I’m good to go.

From left to right: Vesca, Bodyography, Mac, Laura Mercier, Hourglass, Chantecaille

When I want a one and done with even more glitter than the Bodyography, the Hourglass Scattered Light shadows are my go-to choice. The shade reflect is a beautiful pink leaning champagne. I love using this when I want a fun look with one shadow, something impactful for a night out (remember those?), or used sheerly as a topper. The only issue I have with these that I don’t find with any of the others is that I sometimes experience fall out, so I recommend using a glitter primer if you have one.

I put this one last because even though I love it, I can’t seriously recommend it because it’s so expensive. Especially with all the other amazing options on the market, you don’t have to ever spend $52 on a single eyeshadow. That said, the Chantecaille Luminescent Eye Shadow is truly special, and I am so happy I have it in my collection. I have the shade Cheetah, which is a beautiful warm champagne. It has just the right amount of gold for me, and I find that it manages to bring complexity even though it’s quite light. I love how much impact this creates so quickly, and I continue to have to convince myself not to get another one.

What round up would you like to see next? I’d love to know, so leave it in the comments!

Kackie (Reviews Beauty) Made Me Buy It

Kackie has one of my favorite beauty channels to watch – so much so that I now start my day every weekday morning watching her newest video with my coffee, and I can’t imagine it any other way. What makes her stand out for me is that she actually reviews products rather than fawning over new releases. She covers textures, colors, formulation, packaging, etc. in depth, usually with comparisons to similar products you might already have. Kackie goes out of her way to give the most pertinent information to help viewers decide why something might or might not work for them and what they should know about the product when making a purchasing decision. For that reason, almost everything I’ve gotten because of her recommending it has become a fast favorite and something I wish I had bought sooner. There are, of course, a couple of things I wouldn’t buy again, and you’ll have to read on to find out which ones. With that incredibly long intro, let’s get into the products!

All of the products I’ve bought because of Kackie

Aesop Rind Concentrate Body Balm – I mentioned this in my 2020 body care favorites, and I’m still obsessed (and I really try not to use that word too much). This is the most amazing smelling product I own, hands down. My husband also loves it both because of the scent and how moisturizing and quickly absorbing it is. Because it’s 17oz, I feel like it’s going to last forever, and it’s totally worth the price to me.

Supergoop Zincscreen – My HG sunscreen, Krave Beauty The Beet Shield, was out of stock (as usual) when I saw Kackie recommend it. This sounded great because it’s meant for sensitive skin and supposed to work well under makeup as a glowy base. I used it every day as my primary sunscreen and have loved it under makeup or by itself. It has no white cast, blends super quickly, and isn’t too heavy on the skin. The only thing I don’t love about it is the way it smells – I can’t describe it but I just don’t like it. I decided not to repurchase it so I could try the Josie Maran sunscreen I talked about in my post last week, but I did really like it while I used it.

W3ll People Bio Baked Brightener Powder – I use this powder as a last step before my setting spray to clean up and brighten any areas that might need it. It’s perfect for that, and I’m surprised I didn’t have something like this in my routine. Kackie mentions this all the time as a way to correct going too far with blush or bronzer, and it really works for that purpose without adding coverage or mattifying your skin. It is one of the only brightening products I’ve ever used that actually works, and I’m so glad I picked it up.

Daniel Sandler Watercolour Liquid Set for Cheeks – I mentioned this highlighter in my 2020 favorites, and it’s still a favorite. I’ve also fallen in love with the bronzer! They both give an ethereal, natural, glowy effect while actually drying down so they last all day. I really love them both, and I’m pretty sure you can’t get them separately so I’m totally happy to have bought the set to get them. This blush formula is not my favorite – it’s pretty hard to control, and I’d rather use any of my cream blushes instead (like the ones I’ll talk about next). That said, if you’re a liquid blush person, I think you’d love these, and I do like them a lot better than the Glossier Cloud Paints which tend to disappear on my skin extremely quickly.

Petal Poppin and Rosé Latte in natural light

Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush – I just wrote about these in my February 2021 Favorites, so I won’t repeat myself too much. This is one of my favorite cream blush formulas, and I don’t think I would have chosen the Rosé Latte shade if Kackie hadn’t shown it on camera. I figured if it worked for her, it would work for me, and I was right! I’m so glad I ventured out of my comfort zone a bit with that color because it’s now one of my favorite shades in my collection.

Westman Atelier Baby Cheeks Blush Stick in Petal – This continues to be my the perfect “natural but makes me look way healthier and hydrated than I am” shade. It’s just so easy to use and blend, and it’s my go to for when I’m running late or don’t have as much time to do a full “blush look.” I also continue to love the packaging, which just makes it a joy to use. I’ve written about this a few times on the blog because it’s been a favorite since I bought it.

Roen 52° Cool, 11:11, and 75° Warm Eyeshadow Quads

Roen Eyeshadow Palettes – Every time Kackie used these, they looked incredible. She described them as having no compromises in formula, fun and easy to use, and something she wanted to reach for everyday. And I totally agree! I have really fallen in love with the formula and every look I’ve gotten with these. I love that I can do a one or two shadow look in seconds, and it has a ton of impact that lasts all day. The 11:11 quad is definitely my favorite, but I have no regrets getting all three.

Swatches of the 75° Warm , 11:11, and 52° Cool Roen Quads

Vesca Moonlit Dream Cream Eyeshadows – I will admit that I bought these eyeshadows right after I saw Kackie’s reaction the first time she used the shade Lyra. I have absolutely no regrets! These eyeshadows are by far the easiest cream shadows I’ve ever worked with, and I still love the packaging – it’s super easy to only get what you need, and I don’t have to worry about them drying out. It’s so hard to choose between these or the Roen shadows if I had to only choose one sparkly/wet/creamy formula because they are all so beautiful, and I’m glad I have them all.

Thrive Causemetics Eye Brightener, Mascara, and Lip Liner – The mascara and lip liner are both now my standby HGs. I haven’t used any other mascara since I got this one (don’t worry – I switched to a new tube since then!). I can’t see myself switching any time soon.  It makes my lashes look amazing, doesn’t smudge, and washes off so easily. The lip liner I got is actually in the shade Kackie as it is Kackie’s collaboration shade. This is my favorite lip liner shade, and I can put any gloss or lipstick over top of it and it will look perfect. The formula also manages to be creamy, not drying, and have great staying power. The eye brightener is the only thing I didn’t love – the formula is great, but the shade I got is both too light for an all over color and too dark for an inner corner shade. I don’t reach for it very often for that reason and wouldn’t buy it again if I could go back in time.

Finding Ferdinand Custom Lipstick – I still can’t over being able to literally make any color that has a hex code for only $30. And the formula is incredible – it’s somehow sheer, impactful, moisturizing, and long-lasting all at the same time. The packaging is also so well thought out and truly feels like a luxury product. If I ever need another lipstick, even though it will definitely be awhile,

Vesca Lush Glow Creamy Lip Oil – I’ve already talked about this product on my blog twice because I love it so much. it’s like a lip balm meets lip oil meets lip gloss, and it’s one of my favorite lip product formulas I’ve ever tried. It’s super moisturizing, stays glossy for so much longer than I would have expected, and the color is just the right level of sheerness for me. Kackie showed all of the shades in a recent video, and it turns out that the shade I have (Ginger Lily) is likely the perfect shade for me so not only did she influence me to buy one of my favorite lip products of all time, but she saved me from buying a ton of other shades that wouldn’t have looked great on me.

Glossier Berry Balm Dotcom – I’ve written about how much I can’t stand the birthday shade of the balm dotcom and was pretty sure I would never get another one. Then Kackie included it in a best + worst lip balms video raving about them a few months ago, and I realized I could get one for essentially free while buying replacements for two of my favorite products of all time, Futuredew and Boy Brow since they come in a set. The berry shade is so much better than the birthday, and I can actually say I really do like it. It’s not in my all time favorites because I have a few balms I reach for more, but I absolutely don’t regret getting it, and it’s still getting a lot of use.

Acure Radically Rejuvenating Whipped Night Cream – I have super dry skin, and Kackie recommended this for someone who really need a lot of moisture in their night time routine. I really like this cream – it’s super nourishing without feeling super heavy (just like Kackie said it would be). It’s much more inexpensive than comparable creams I’ve tried. That said, my HG is still the Fresh Lotus Youth Preserve Dream Night Cream, and I’ll be switching back to that once I finish this. I’m super excited to have found a less expensive alternative though if I ever need it!

If you made it this far, thank you so much for reading! What would you like to see next?

March/April Beauty Favorites

I’ll be sharing some of my favorite “stay at home purchases” as I mentioned in my last post. Since it’s now May (already? how?), I wanted to share my favorites from March and April since I took a break last month.

I’ve tried lots of wash-off face masks, but I’ve finally discovered my holy grails, and I’m so excited to share these. The first is the Peter Thomas Roth Pumpkin Enzyme Mask. I’m only using it once or twice a week, so this jar will last forever, making the price much more reasonable for me. It is one of the only things I’ve found to really help my skin when it’s feeling congested or dull when an AHA toner won’t do quite enough. It smells strongly like pumpkin, so if you’re not into that, I would consider skipping this one. For me, it’s totally worth the smell for a few minutes to get clear, bright skin. Bonus – I haven’t had any acne issues since I start using it despite my not great diet and high stress levels lately.

What I use right after the pumpkin enzyme mask to deeply moisturize my skin is the Farmacy Honey Potion Renewing Antioxidant Hydration Mask. This mask warms up as you massage it into your skin, so not only does it work to deeply moisturize and calm my skin , it’s also a really great relaxing experience. It is the perfect mask to use after an exfoliating treatment or just when your skin is feeling extra dry. My only regret is that I bought the small size! I know there are a bunch of folks who use this a few times a week, which I definitely want to do now that I understand how great it is, so I’m hoping I can pick it up on sale when I run out!

If you know me or have read my past posts, you know I definitely don’t need any more blush. I got more anyway because it’s one of my favorite product categories. I think I’ve featured blush in my favorites every month so far, and that probably won’t stop any time soon. I’m usually more drawn to cream and liquid blushes, so I very excited to have found a really amazing powder blush formula – the Em Cosmetics Heaven’s Glow Blush in Magic Hour. It provides a soft, glowy look without being overly pigmented so it is such an easy way to brighten up a look. I also use this to set cream and liquid blushes if I know I’ll be on video calls for 12 hours, and the color is perfect for that for a wide range of shades. It’s been beating out my favorite Nars and Hourglass blushes for my most used powder blush, and I really hope they come out with more than just the two shades they current have!

I’ve written about my love for Natasha Denona shadows before when I talked about my favorite products of 2019, but I know it’s not possible or practical for everyone to get a $129 or more palette. I’m so excited she came out with these $25 mini palettes with the same high quality formula and much more curated shadows so you only get what you need. The Mini Retro Eyeshadow Palette is a really great addition to my collection because the colors are so unique. I’m not sure I was able to capture them in my swatches here, but I’m loving the shade selection here. These are great to use in conjunction with other palettes (especially the shimmer shades) to add some color to an otherwise neutral look or to make a really pretty springy pink/green look.

I have found my perfect gloss formula, and they are only $14! The Tower 28 ShineOn Jelly Lip Glosses are beautifully sheer, moisturizing, glossy without being sticky, fairly long lasting for a gloss, play nicely with lipsticks and lip liners underneath, come in a great color selection – I could go on and on about these. I have the shades Fire and Fearless. Fire is a great spring/summer bright orange shade and Fearless is a really pretty berry, but both are sheer enough that I can wear them for my work calls or to warm up or cool down lip products underneath. I was going to splurge for a expensive lip oil during the Sephora sale, but these definitely fulfill that need for me, and I’m so happy I got these instead.

I definitely didn’t need more brushes, but Sonia G. restocked her pro face brushes, and I was so excited to grab the Face Pro and the Designer Pro. The Face Pro is the best brush I have found for a diffused contour and bronzer application and is able to create that diffused look with all of my powder bronzers. It’s really great for me to have a brush I can use without having to think about if it’s the right one for the formula. The Designer Pro is perfect for blush or highlight or targeted powder application and similar to the Face Pro, it works great with every formula I’ve tried it with. As with all her brushes, they look great after washing, there is very little shedding, and they have the right weight distribution to make using them a great experience. Of all my Sonia G. brushes so far, I would recommend these as these shapes are more unique in her line versus others, and if you’re looking for a super high quality brush for blush, bronzer, and highlighter, you can’t go wrong with these two.

What are you loving this month? Anything you want to see from me next? Let me know!

January 2020 Skincare and Makeup Favorites

I’m super excited to share my January 2020 favorites! These are 6 things that I either discovered or rediscovered in January that stood out as favorites.

The Laneige Cica Sleeping Mask has been a skin game changer for me. I got it as a gift with purchase from Sephora and loved it so much I went and got the full size, which I hardly ever do. I have dry, sensitive skin, so I tend to wait before committing, but this is incredible. It’s $34, but you only use it twice a week, and I can tell this jar will last me forever. My skin is less red, smoother, and brighter to the point that I went multiple days in January without foundation and felt like I didn’t even need it.

Speaking of going foundation free, I ran out of my MUFE concealer and needed a replacement, so I picked up the new Hourglass Vanish Airbrush Concealer. I’ve used it sparingly as foundation all over my face, and it looks beautiful. It covers my dark circles without looking cakey, and it blends right into the skin so you can’t even tell you’re wearing makeup. I’m really excited to have this for travel since I can use it as foundation and concealer using a tiny amount and won’t have to bring multiple base products. It is a little drying so I need to make sure to moisturize well first, but I am confident this will be amazing for the spring and summer.

I definitely didn’t need any more eyeshadow, but the Viseart Petite Pro 4 was on sale, and it’s been on my wish list since it launched. I’m so happy I decided to get it. It’s the perfect mix of neutrals, and I love how small this is for travel or to take with my during the day. Like all Viseart shadows, these blend seamlessly with little fallout and aren’t overly glittery, so I can put together a look for work super quickly. It’s also only $30 even when it’s not on sale, which makes this a great option for anyone wanting to try out Viseart eyeshadow.

I fell in love with a new primer in January – the Vichy Mineral 89 Face Serum. As you can see in the photo, I’m still working through the sample size, but I am definitely get the full size when I run out. It provides a hydrating base for anything I put over it, and I love to mix it with my Hangover RX Primer or the Hollywood Flawless Filter to add some extra hydration to those.

I also rediscovered two of my long time favorites:

I finally redeemed a voucher I had for the Lancome Monsieur Big Waterproof Mascara, and I realized why this was my favorite mascara for so long. It keeps my lashes curled all day so I look way more awake, it doesn’t flake or smudge, and it comes off super easily even though it’s waterproof.

I also started wearing my Nest Citrine again, and it is my perfect every day scent. I love how fresh it is and how it stays all day despite how light the scent is. I’m trying to work through my perfume collection, but it’s been tough because this is all I’ve been wanting to wear.

I’m trying out a few new things right now that you might see in my February favorites so check back in a month if you want to learn what they are! What was your favorite discovery in January?