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.

March 2021 Favorites

This month went by so fast – I feel like I was just writing about my February 2021 Favorites yesterday! Spring is finally here, and I’ve been loving leaning into brighter colors as it gets warmer outside. I didn’t include any skincare products this month because I’ve talked about so many of them recently, but let me know if the comments if there’s anything you’re interested in learning about!

I now own over 20 cream blushes – it’s by far my favorite makeup product. And I think my new favorite formula out of all of them is the Kjaer Weis Cream Blush. I love that I can just buy a refill and put it in my Salt New York empty palette, and that it’s still around $30 even for a luxury, “clean” product. This formula has the perfect balance between blendable and long-wearing. It’s so easy to work with, create impact, and stays all day. I was shocked to find that it was still on my cheeks after wearing makeup for over 15 hours. Because I own so many cream blushes, I tried to get a shade I didn’t have already and chose Sun Touched, and it’s the perfect shade as we transition into spring. I also love mixing it with Spice and Rose , my favorite shades from Salt New York, for that “sun touched even though I never go outside” look.

Swatches of the Salt New York Blushes in Rose and Spice and KW Blush in Sun Touched

I’m shocked I haven’t written about the mini base brush from Sonia G. yet. I got it as part of the Keyaki holiday 2020 set, and while I love all the brushes in that set (so much so that I am still considering buying a backup set), this brush is truly one of a kind. It blends cream blush and highlight with no effort and is the perfect size for my face. For something that applies so seamlessly, I usually expect to have trouble picking up product. This brush is dense enough to pick up enough product and flexible enough to create a diffused look. If anyone connected to the company is reading this, please bring this brush back into your permanent line!

I was having trouble with some of my glitter eyeshadow toppers not staying put all day and moving around, so I decided to pick up the NYX Glitter Primer, and it’s a total game changer. It goes on super smooth, helps glitter adhere all day, and doesn’t cause any irritation. I really appreciate how lightweight it is on the eyes while still creating a great base for glitter to stick to. I definitely have had way more success with my glitter toppers with it, and I’m so glad to have found something under $10 that works as well as this does!

I’ve been loving all three of the Roen eyeshadow quads, but my favorite is absolutely the 11:11. 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.

Swatches of the Roen 11:11 Quad

My lips have been super dry lately, and I’ve been leaning on the Glow Recipe Glow Lip Pop Balms a ton. I have both scents/colors, but I like the watermelon better. They are hydrating, leave a nice stain, and smell great. They also gently exfoliate while you’re using it, which I really love. I’m always forgetting to take the time to scrub my lips, so this is a really easy way to buff away anything on my lips during the day when I apply this. My favorite way to use it is actually underneath my more matte lipsticks, especially darker brown ones like Velvet Affair from Lisa Eldrige. It mixes with the color to make it feel more springy while also making sure my lips don’t dry out from the matte formula.

The Replica Coffee Break perfume reminds me of a coffee shop on a Sunday morning early in the day before it gets busy. I used to love going to get coffee every Sunday with our friends (who I miss so much!), and this reminds me of when that was a thing. Even with the vanilla notes, it’s not too sweet. It’s perfectly balanced with pepper, citrus, and tonka bean notes, and it’s my favorite perfume that I own in the vanilla/veviter/patchouli category. One important note – this doesn’t smell anything like coffee. If anyone has a recommendation for something that leans closer to actual coffee, let me know in the comments!

I got this Ouai Scalp & Body Scrub as a gift with purchase, and I didn’t expect to get a lot of use out of it. It turns out that it’s the best scalp scrub I’ve ever used (and I’ve tried a lot of products like this). It works really well as a scalp scrub in that it gets out any residue or product build up that I have in my hair. What I really love about it though is that it actually hydrates as it works so I don’t have to worry about irritating my already super dry scalp. It makes my hair feel so much cleaner but without drying anything out, and it also smells amazing! I’ll definitely be buying the full size when I run out.

What was your favorite product this month? What would you like to see next on LiftBakeLove? Let me know in the comments below!

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?

Vesca Review: Moonlit Dream Cream Eyeshadows and Lush Glow Creamy Lip Oil

I’ve wanted to try Vesca for awhile now, but I have a bunch of powder bronzers and highlighters to get through that I have not used in so long because I am all about cream products now. When I saw these eyeshadows and the lip oil though, I knew I had to try them. My only regret is not getting them sooner! I wanted to share a bit more about the products compare to some similar products/shades I already own.

Moonlit Dream cream eyeshadow in Carina and Lyra & Lush Glow Creamy Lip Oil in Ginger Lily

These eyeshadows are by far the easiest cream shadows I’ve ever worked with. I honestly love the packaging – it’s super easy to only get what you need, and I don’t have to worry about them drying out. The colors are perfect for a one shadow look (see below for swatches!), they stay blendable for long enough to get your look just right, and they dry down and don’t crease all day. Even with that dry down, I was able to add additional shadows on top, like glitter toppers, and they stuck on amazingly well. I tried them with and without primer, and they worked well both ways. As usual (for me), I did find the primer helped with making the colors brighter (I use a very light colored primer) and longevity. My only gripe with these is that they only come in 4 shades.

I own 76 lip products at the moment. It takes a lot for something to edge itself into my top 5 formula/color favorites, but this lip oil easily did it. It’s hard to explain the formula – it’s like a lip balm meets lip oil meets lip gloss, and I’m honestly obsessed with it. 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. If I didn’t own 75 other lip products, I would buy the whole range (let me know if you want me to review any other colors though – I will grab them if you comment below with a request!).

Vesca Lush Glow Creamy Lip Oil in Ginger Lily, Lisa Eldridge Gloss Embrace Lip Gloss in Muse, and Sephora Collection Melting Lip Click in Caramel from left to right

I had a hunch that these three would be fairly close in texture and formula, and they are – but they also aren’t. If you’re looking for something super sheer and slightly moisturizing, the Sephora Melting Lip Click will totally suffice. If you’re looking for something more moisturizing that will add color, you’ll be happy with either the Lisa Eldridge or the Vesca. The Vesca is a bit more sheer, but it stays glossier on the lips, so it’s up to personal preference which one you’d like better! I have to say that I don’t regret owning them all because they serve different functions for me. I would only repurchase the Lisa Eldridge and the Vesca products, and I want more shades in both formulas for sure.

Sephora Collection Melting Lip Click in Caramel, Lisa Eldridge Gloss Embrace Lip Gloss in Muse, and Vesca Lush Glow Creamy Lip Oil in Ginger Lily from left to right
Tom Ford Cream Color for Eyes in Spice, Vesca Moonlit Dream in Carina, Hourglass Scattered Light Glitter Eye Shadow in Reflect, and Vesca Moonlit Dream in Lyra from left to right

I also thought that it would be really helpful to compare the Hourglass Scattered Light and Tom Ford Cream Color for Eyes with these, both for texture and color. The Vesca is by far my favorite formula to work with – it doesn’t flake or have fall out like the Hourglass can and it’s way easier to blend and maneuver than the Tom Ford (though the shade I have is quite deep on me which may be part of the problem). They all do dry down and don’t budge and look beautiful on the eyes. In terms of color, the Vesca is more true to the rose gold and gold colors I expected and I would rather use the Vesca for a one and done look than either of the other two for that reason – as you can see form the swatches, they have a lot more dimension and texture than the others in a really good way.

Hourglass Scattered Light Glitter Eye Shadow in Reflect, esca Moonlit Dream in Lyra, Tom Ford Cream Color for Eyes in Spice, and Vesca Moonlit Dream in Carina from left to right

I’m so happy I picked these up, and I hope this review and comparisons were helpful! What do you want me to review next? Comment below!