MY 9 FAVORITE PRODUCTS UNDER $30

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 $30. I would love see your favorites and recommendations for under $20 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.

Glossier Futuredew ($24) – This continues to be one of my favorite products, and it’s one of the only things I consistently use every day in my makeup routine. It provides the most amazing glossy, hydrating base that makes me look like I drank enough water (and if you know me, you know I have never had enough water). It works beautifully with any foundation, concealer, and powder combo I put on top of it and makes them look way better on my skin – no dry patches, no clinging, no flatness. I’ve also used it mixed in with other base products to sheer them out a little bit and make them more hydrating, and that works great too.

Melt Cosmetics Cream Blushlights ($22) – I have the shades Polished (warm pink) and Daydreamer (rich cinnamon), and I love having both a warm and cool option in this formula. It has a really beautiful luminosity to it from a slight amount of shimmer that makes this really special. These are my favorite formula for when I want a super glowy from within blush look. The formula blends so effortlessly and quickly, and I just love the super thin but hydrating texture. They also have great staying power for such an emollient cream blush.

Melt Cosmetics Cream Blushlights in Polished and Daydreamer

Viseart Petite Pro 4 ($30) – I got this during a sale at the end of 2019, and I still reach for it all the time even with all the other eyeshadows I own now. I’m so happy I decided to get it and that I have it in my collection. It’s the perfect mix of neutrals, and I’ve loved how small and compact this is for travel and how easily I can put all the shades into my Salt New York palette with my other single eyeshadows when I’m at home (which is why it’s missing from the picture above). 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 too. I love using the mattes to blend out another look that might need it or use the shimmers as a sophisticated topper.

Urban Decay 24/7 Moondust Eyeshadow in Space Cowboy ($22) – I own a ton of single glittery/topper type eyeshadows and love them all, but I think my absolute favorite is this one. I’ve used it on top of my eyeshadow almost every single time I’ve used my eyeshadow since I bought it, and I’m so happy with the effect it has. It’s a sheer shimmery eyeshadow that adds a wet look to any shadow without really adding any color or changing the color of the look underneath. It’s also incredibly reflective and glossy, doesn’t have any fallout, and is so easy to apply with a brush or fingers (and doesn’t require any glitter glue).

Lisa Eldridge Liquid Lurex Eyeshadow in Angelica and Bianca ($27) – I absolutely love this eyeshadow. This formula is so quick and easy to use. It’s almost like a mousse and feels halfway 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 some of the more spangly eyeshadows I’ve ever used, which may be the thing I love about them the most. 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. Bianca is a warm, purply-pink that really makes my brown eyes pop. Regardless of price, these are some of my favorite eyeshadows in my collection.

Angelica (left) and Bianca (right)

Chantecaille Brightening Eye Nude Kajal ($29) – This is the only eye liner I’ve found that is the right color to brighten up my eyes when I use it in the waterline – it’s not too white or pink. It just looks like I actually get enough sleep and makes my eyes look less red, even if it’s from allergies. It also stays all day and doesn’t irritate my eyes. It’s on the pricier side for an eyeliner at $29, but mine has lasted me so long, and I think it’s completely worth it.

Em Cosmetics Lip Cushion in Magic Hour and Venetian Rose  ($23) – I’m honestly surprised I haven’t panned one of these yet. I keep them at my desk to have an easy, full pigment lip color that’s incredibly easy to swipe on without a mirror. The formula is incredibly moisturizing and has enough thickness to not disappear right away even if I’m talking a lot. Either color completely brightens up my face, and I love having both a brighter pink and dusty rose shade at hand.

Em Cosmetics Lip Cushion in Magic Hour and Venetian Rose

Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Foundation Brush ($28) – This is one of my favorite foundation brushes (and I have a lot of brushes). I find myself continually going back to it instead of any others I have. It has such a perfect shape for foundation and even concealer because the angles and edges make it super easy to get into all the contours of my face. It’s also really densely packed which ensures it maintains the level of coverage of any product I’m using it with. It also never creates any streaks and cleans really well even with consistently using it with liquid products.

Olaplex No. 3 Hair Repair Perfector ($28) – Every time I use this, I feel like my hair has been transformed. It feels way smoother, stronger, and shinier without being weighed down. I notice a huge difference when I don’t use this treatment, and it’s incredibly worth it to me. My hair is normally super prone to breakage, and this is one of the only products I’ve tried that actually helps with that. It also helps my hair feel way less dry than usual without making it greasy. This is one of my only true hair staples (outside of my Bumble & Bumble loves) that I continue to repurchase over and over again.

What are your favorite products under $30? 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.

Revisiting the 5 Oldest Products in My Collection

As part of my no-buy year, I’m trying to really get to know and love my collection, and my friend suggested that I review the oldest five products in my collection as a way to revisit products that I might have forgotten about. I track all my purchases in an Excel sheet, so it was super easy to find the five oldest products, and I’m excited to review them. Not everything is linked because some of these items were limited edition or discontinued and aren’t available anymore. 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!

diptyque Paris Eau Moheli – My husband bought this for me for our first holidays together, and I’ve loved and cherished it ever since. It’s been more than 8 years since I received it, and it still smells exactly the same. The scent is a very fresh citrusy, green, and woody and definitely fits our joint love of nature and hiking. I wore it on our wedding day and have a travel atomizer I used whenever I went on a trip alone for work. The scent continues to make me so happy, and this is a great reminder for me to use it more often instead of trying to save it. I know it’ll go bad eventually, and I’ll have to throw it away, so I want to get as much use out of it as possible.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Master Palette By Mario – This was a limited edition palette, and I’m honestly so glad I bought it even though I wasn’t even really into makeup yet when it came out. It is one of my most loved makeup products in my collection and always what I used when I wanted my eye makeup to look great. I got so many compliments wearing this palette, especially the shades Paris and Marina. The quality is actually still the same as when I got it in 2016, and I won’t be getting rid of it until I’ve panned more of the shades. I wish that instead of buying more eyeshadow over the years, I just used this one more.

Four of the shades from the Viseart Theory Palette in Cashmere are on the right under JD Glow Unexpected

Viseart Theory Palette in Cashmere – This was given to me as a gift and was my first “higher end” palette. I honestly don’t use it very much because it’s quite cool toned and the shimmers don’t provide as much impact as I would want. I like the mattes but like using the mattes in my other palettes so much more, including in the Petit Pro palette I have from Viseart. I wish that I had gotten that one instead of this one originally. Writing this up had made me consider decluttering this to a friend because it’s made me realize that I’ve been forcing myself to use it instead of palettes that work much better for me. In the meantime, I had moved some of the shadows into my Salt New York palette to see if I’ll get more use out of them that way.

Bite Beauty Amouse Bouche Lipstick in Chai – This was part of the Sephora birthday gift set in 2018 and still one of my favorite lipstick shades. It’s a warm plummy brown that works so well with my lip color, and I always loved how it looked when I wore it. The formula is still super creamy and slightly hydrating. I also purchased the full size of Chai when they were discontinuing the lipstick line because I thought I’d for sure get through the mini. I didn’t know 2020 was going to happen and we’d be wearing lipstick so much less, but even so, I learned that I don’t need to buy a full size no matter how much I like the mini because it takes so long to get through lip products. The mini is still going strong and now I have so many other lipsticks I love wearing just as much.

Maybelline Expert Wear Eyeshadow Single in Nude Glow

Maybelline Expert Wear Eyeshadow Single in Nude Glow – I used and loved this eyeshadow so much. It’s still one of the singles I pack when I’m going on a trip because it’s such a great one and done. The color is a really pretty rosy bronzy sparkly shade that isn’t too dark or light on me. The formula has held up really well and still goes on creamy with no fallout. It was only $3.99, and looking back, it was a much better investment than some of the other eyeshadows I’ve purchased over the years.

What products do you have in your collection from years ago? Do you still wear them? Tell me about it 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.

My Top 15 Recommendations for the Sephora Sale

The fall Sephora sale is starting this Friday for Rouge members and soon after for VIB and Insider members! I wanted to share my top 15 recommendations for things to pick up during the sale, focusing on products that I’ve used, loved, and repurchased over and over again with a couple of newer must haves thrown in. If there’s a product you’re considering that I didn’t mention here, feel free to ask any questions in the comments! 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.

Mini Retro Eyeshadow Palette – I wrote about this palette in my March/April 2020 favorites, and it’s still one of my favorites. It’s been such a 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 in person, these are so special. I love using these shades in conjunction with other palettes (especially the shimmer shades) to add some color to an otherwise neutral look or to make a really pretty and sparkly pink or a sultry green look. The shadows still feel like new even having it for almost 2 years now, and I highly recommend it instead of spending over a hundred dollars on a larger ND palette.

Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Foundation Brush – This is one of my favorite foundations brushes (and I have a lot of brushes). I find myself continually going back to it instead of any others I have. It has such a perfect shape for foundation and even concealer because the angles and edges make it super easy to get into all the contours of my face. It’s also really densely packed which ensures it maintains the level of coverage of any product I’m using it with. It also never creates any streaks and cleans really well even with consistently using it with liquid products.

Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Concealer Brush – Like the foundation brush, this has really densely packed bristles which I really appreciate. It’s also designed to mimic the shape of your fingertip, and I find that it makes it like I’m blending out with my finger but without losing any coverage. I use it every day with my undereye corrector, and it helps so much when I’m attempting to correct my dark circles. It also works great for spot concealing given how precise you can get with it.

 Viseart Petite Pro 4 – I got this during a sale at the end of 2019, and I still reach for it all the time even with all the other eyeshadows I own now. I’m so happy I decided to get it and that I have it in my collection. It’s the perfect mix of neutrals, and I’ve loved how small and compact this is for travel and how easily it fits in my Salt New York palette when I’m at home. 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 too. I love using the mattes to blend out another look that might need it or use the shimmers as a sophisticated topper. This a great option for anyone wanting to try out Viseart eyeshadow, especially during the sale.

Melt Cosmetics Cream Blushlight – I have the shade Polished, and it’s such an incredible warm pink that looks so at home on me. It has a really beautiful luminosity to it from a slight amount of shimmer, and it’s my go-to blush for when I want something that has that super glowy from within blush look. It blends so effortlessly and quickly, and I just love the super thin but hydrating texture. They also have great staying power for a cream blush. I’m likely going to pick up another one during the sale because I love using it so much, even with my dozens of other cream blushes.

Natasha Denona Puff Paint Liquid Blush – This is a liquid blush serum that dries down but keep its beautiful sheen – you can see how dewy it looks on my swatch below. I love using it as a finishing touch after I apply other cream blushes to add some brightness and shimmer-free shine. It never disturbs anything underneath it and is just the right amount of pigmentation to use in this way. I have it in the shade Darya, which is a bright melon color that is really unique to my collection.

Hourglass Veil Translucent Setting Powder – I’ve talked about this in my favorites many times, and I still use it almost every day. It’s such a great for dry skin, and the full size really lasts forever. It looks like I’ve barely used it even though I bought it in 2019 and use it super consistently. If you don’t want to splurge for the full size and don’t use a lot of powder, you can totally get away with using the travel size for over a year in my experience. Even though I love the Kosas Cloud Set Powder (which is also a great thing to pick up during the sale), I still find myself reaching for this all the time, especially for under my eyes.

Farmacy Honey Potion Renewing Antioxidant Hydration Mask – This continues to be HG face mask, and one of the only ones I use consistently. 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 when your skin is feeling extra dry. It really is the best face mask of all time. My skin feels so smooth, hydrated, and glowy after using this. It’s my go to for when my skin is feeling stressed, irritated, overly dry, or anything else that requires help. It always comes to the rescue, and my 1.7oz jar is still going strong so it was totally worth the investment.

Nuface Mini Facial Toning Device – I know this is expensive, but it really works! This device has helped so much with my forehead wrinkles (they were so deep and now they are basically gone between this and the retinol!) and firming up my jawline and my neck. I’m so glad I invested in this now so I can keep using it on my skin for years to come. I have convinced a couple of other folks to get one and so far, they have all had good things to say too! I featured this in my year end favorites last year, and it’s still going strong and working great for me.

Shiseido Benefiance Wrinkle Smoothing Eye Cream Duo – This eye cream was sent to me to try and review, and I thought at the time “there’s no way I’m going to fall in love with a $70 eye cream.” And now, I’ve repurchased it at least four times! This is the only eye cream I’ve found that actually works to reduce wrinkles around my eyes without irritation and while still adding a ton of hydration. And this duo makes it less than $50, plus even less with the VIB discount. It’s totally worth it for me for how effective it is, and this is another product where I can really tell the difference if I switch to something else.

Ouai Scalp and Body Scrub – I got this mini 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’ve already purchased the full size, but if I hadn’t, I would absolutely grab a jar now.

Necessaire The Body Wash – I have tried a ton of body washes this year and my favorite is still this one. I love the eucalyptus for when I need a mood boost and the sandalwood is great for creating a sense of calm before I head to bed. I love the packaging and the formula is perfect for my dry skin even in the winter (I posted this as one of my July favorites last year, and it was great for the summer this year too). I’m starting to run low on this one after finishing my other one, so I might pick up another one during the sale.

Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Ultra-Fine Mist – I use this as a hydrating step while I’m doing my makeup every morning, especially if things are starting to feel a little drier than I want it to be, because I set everything with my Cover FX Setting Spray. I use this very much like a Mac Fix+, but Fix+ breaks me out, so I was so excited to find this. The watermelon mist is so fine, actually hydrating, and smells amazing. I love how it melts all my makeup together to look seamless without disrupting anything.

Laneige Cica Sleeping Mask  – I’ve talked about this in 3 favorites posts now because I love it so much. My last jar lasted me from before January 2020 until now, so for me, it’s 100% worth the $34 price for the jar (and I always pay less because I pick up one during the Sephora sale). I only use this mask twice a week when I use my AHA toner, and it really helps with any potential irritation that comes with using an exfoliator. It also makes a huge difference in taming the redness in my skin that I really don’t have any anymore. I will definitely be picking up another one during the sale!

Olaplex No. 3 – Every time I use this, I feel like my hair has been transformed. It feels way smoother, stronger, and shinier without being weighed down. I notice a huge difference when I don’t use this treatment, and it’s incredibly worth it to me. My hair is normally super prone to breakage, and this is one of the only products I’ve tried that actually helps with that. It also helps my hair feel way less dry than usual without making it greasy. This is one of my only true hair staples (outside of my Bumble & Bumble loves) that I continue to repurchase over and over again.

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

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?