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Beauty, Lips, Makeup

Colourpop haul and swatches

colourpop kiddo, echo park, dopey, cami, bossy, bangin brunettecolourpop-haulIt’s been over a year since I’ve ordered anything from Colourpop, and I really wanted to try some of their newer formulas, namely the Ultra Satin Lips and the Matte X. I did a little research and decided on one Sheer Lippie Stix in Kiddo, two Ultra Satin Lips in Echo Park and Dopey, a Matte X in Cami, and a Lippie Pencil in Bossy. I also really wanted to try out their brow pencil, so I picked out the shade Bangin’ Brunette. Here are some hand swatches in natural daylight and with flash:

Colourpop kiddo, echo park, dopey, cami, bossy, bangin' brunette

Swatches in natural light

Swatches with flash

Swatches with flash

I also took some pictures so you can see what they look like on my (very tired-looking) face. Note that I’m wearing Bangin’ Brunette in my brows in all the pictures:

bare lips

bare lips

Colourpop Kiddo


colourpop echo park

Echo Park

Colourpop Dopey


colourpop cami


colourpop bossy


After using each product only once or twice, I can only give my first impressions. So far, my favorites are Kiddo, Echo Park, and Cami. I wanted Kiddo for minimal makeup days when I needed only a sheer wash of color, and I’m happy to say it’s perfect! Echo Park is basically the same color as Kiddo, but obviously a very different formula, and much more opaque. I love the Ultra Satin formula, it’s so comfortable. Dopey even got an A+ on Temptalia. They really are that good. Strangely, my two Ultra Satin Lip applicators seem to be different! Dopey has a typical sponge tip, but if you look closely at Echo Park, its applicator is shorter and spikier. I have no idea why this might be. So far, I haven’t noticed any difference in how they apply the product, so I can’t complain too much. My favorite of all of these might be Cami. The Matte X formula is probably the most comfortable and most matte lip product I’ve ever used.

The only two products I feel so-so about are the Lippie Pencil in Bossy and the brow pencil. The lip pencil, while being very opaque, was a little difficult to apply. It tugged at my lips quite a bit and was pretty time consuming to put on. I’m also disappointed that it’s not a twist-up pencil. Fortunately, I won’t be wearing it often. I really only got it because I have absolutely zero red lip pencils since getting rid of a bunch of makeup earlier this year, and I needed one for a red liquid lipstick in my collection that’s a little patchy on its own. The brow pencil is alright, but I think it’s just a tad too warm and doesn’t match my hair perfectly. It’s also a little too soft and deposits too much color for my taste. I prefer a harder, waxier pencil.

I really love Colourpop. The quality of the products is generally amazing, and I’ll admit I’m already looking to get more Ultra Satin and Matte X colors!

Beauty, Eyes, Makeup

Mascara Clear-Out


mascara-clear-out-2I’ve been reaching for the same mascara every single day for months. The Wet n Wild Max Volume Plus Waterproof Mascara has been my go-to pretty much since the day I bought it. It meets all my criteria for a great mascara: semi-dry formula, holds a curl extremely well, waterproof, separates and elongates lashes, and is easy to remove. I figured since this is really the only mascara I use (the Heroine Make mascara is sticking around for special events), I might as well purge my collection of the not-so-great ones. Let’s jump right in:

It Cosmetics Hello Lashes | This is a pretty mediocre mascara. It doesn’t provide much volume, and it doesn’t hold a curl at all. I’m also not a huge fan of the spikey ball on the end of the brush. I always get mascara on my eyelids with brushes like this.

Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes | Hello clumps! I really dislike this mascara. It’s so thick and gloopy that I have to spend way too long brushing through my lashes with a lash comb to remove the clumps. It also has a very strong scent, and well, I prefer not smelling my eyelashes. It also doesn’t hold a curl at all, which is the number one thing I look for in a mascara.

Wet n Wild Max Fanatic Cat Eye | This one wasn’t as disappointing as a few of the others. I also like the brush, as I find it easy to apply to both eyes. I usually have a bit more trouble applying mascara to my left eyelashes because I could never get the hang of turning my hand around and holding the brush backwards, so I like the comb shape of this one. I’m tossing it because I’ve had it for quite a few months now, it doesn’t hold a curl super well, and it does flake a little bit throughout the day.

Jordana Best Lash Extreme | I think I need to give up on non-waterproof mascaras. I don’t think I’ve really loved a single one throughout the years. This is another mascara that I found to be mediocre. It’s a thick, wet formula that clumps up very easily and has to be brushed out with a lash comb. This type of mascara always flakes off on me. Not a fan.

Bare Minerals Lash Domination | I know this one was just a sample, but I didn’t like the tiny brush. I also didn’t like the super wet formula that made my lashes point further downward than if I was wearing no mascara at all. This one was a big fail for me.

Really, all I really want is for my lashes to stay curled throughout the day. If anyone has any recommendations for cruelty-free waterproof mascaras that hold a curl, I’d love to hear them!

Beauty, Lips, Makeup

Current favorite lip products & a dupe for Kat Von D Lolita

current-favorite-lipsticksAs I was going through my lipstick collection yesterday trying to figure out which products I’ve been wearing the most, I ended up discovering a dupe! Kat Von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lolita has been a cult favorite for a while, and for good reason. It’s one of those one-of-a-kind shades that looks good on everyone. As I swatched my other favorite lipsticks of the moment, I was pretty surprised to see that NYX’s Liquid Suede Lipstick in Soft Spoken looked really, really similar. As the two swatches dried side by side, they looked even more similar, so much so that I almost forgot which was which. Take a look:


katvond-lolita-nyx-softspokenThe difference is unnoticeable when worn on my lips. Of course this will depend on the natural color of your lips. I did a little bit of Googling, and it seems like a few people have noticed the similarity before.  The two lipsticks did look slightly different on another blogger who posted about them. One thing that is very different about these two products is the formula. Lolita is much thinner, and closer to a true liquid lipstick. Because of this, I find that I have to be careful when applying it because any overlapping of the product will show up as a dark patch. It’s also a lot dryer, and it can be uncomfortable. I actually prefer the formula of the NYX Liquid Suede. It’s thicker, and it dries a lot slower to more of a satin finish, so it never becomes uncomfortable. It also doesn’t have the same patchiness problem as Lolita. Depending on your skin tone, these may not look 100% identical (I would say Lolita is the tiniest bit warmer than Soft Spoken) but for $7 compared to $20 for Lolita, Soft Spoken is an amazing alternative.

My other favorite lip product of the moment is an old standby, the Jordana Twist & Shine Balm in Honey Love. These came out shortly after the wildly popular Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains that everyone raved about around four years ago. I did have a few of the Revlon balms, but I much preferred Jordana’s version, which didn’t dry out my lips like Revlon’s. I’ve been wearing Honey Love to job interviews and on days when I want my makeup to look a little more finished, but I don’t want something high maintenance like a liquid lipstick that I have to constantly check on.

That’s it for my favorite lipsticks right now! I definitely want to pick up another Liquid Suedes. I have my eye on Sandstorm.

Beauty, Eyes, Makeup

The Balm Meet Matt(e) Trimony Eyeshadow Pallette



The other side of the palette does contain a mirror, but it’s really hard to take a picture of a mirror and not see your ugly picture-taking-face in the reflection!

Back in April, I was shopping at Kohl’s in Wisconsin, and I mentioned to my mom that I wanted this palette, and she kindly bought it for me (thanks mom!).  I had never tried The Balm’s eyeshadows before, but I’ve only heard good things, so I was very excited to put this to the test. Here are some not-so-amazing swatches:


thebalm-meet-matte-trimony-swatches-2Believe me, my swatches don’t do this palette justice, as the quality of the shadows is brilliant. They are everything I want in a matte eyeshadow: buttery, pigmented, and easy to blend. My favorite shadow in the palette is definitely Matt Lopez – it makes a great warm transition shade. After that, my favorites are probably Matt Evans, Matt Rossi, and Matt Lin. The only shadow that isn’t quite as intense as the others seems to be Matt Kumar, the brick red in the center of the palette. Truthfully, I haven’t reached for Matt Kumar very much, since I tend to go for the lighter, neutral shades, but I’m sure I could get it to be just as rich as it looks in the pan with a bit of primer or fixative.


Wearing Matt Evans on the lid, Matt Lopez in the crease, and Matt Lin in the inner corner

Pick this up if you like a versatile matte palette with a good selection of cool and warm tones!

The Balm Meet Matt(e) Trimony matte eyeshadow palette $42

Beauty, Face, Makeup

Becca x Jaclyn Hill Champagne Collection Face Palette

beccaxjaclynhill-champagne-collection-face-palette-packaging-frontLast week, I was lucky enough to order the new, limited edition Becca x Jaclyn Hill Champagne Collection Face Palette during its early release on the Sephora mobile app. It will go on sale on tomorrow, May 26th and will be available in stores on June 16th. For whatever reason, I feel like I need Jaclyn Hill’s collaborations with Becca whenever they’re announced. I don’t typically get excited about blogger or YouTuber collabs, but it’s different with Jaclyn! Even though our makeup styles couldn’t be more different, I know what she brings out with Becca will be high quality and very, very pretty! Here are some more pictures:

beccaxjaclynhill-champagne-collection-face-palette-packagingThe packaging is very pretty. It is plastic, but it has a nice weight to it that I feel would be over the top if it were made of glass or metal. The back of the palette has a sticker that details which shades and formulas are inside. The entire inside of the cover has a good, high quality mirror.

beccaxjaclynhill-champagne-collection-face-palette-1 beccaxjaclynhill-champagne-collection-face-paletteInside, you get a 0.19 oz pan each of Champagne Pop and the new highlighter, Prosecco Pop (Becca’s original Shimmering Skin Perfectors come in 0.28 oz pans). Prosecco Pop is described as a medium warm gold. You also get three blushes, Rosé Spritz (0.10 oz), a “peachy pink with pale gold shimmer”, Amaretto (0.12 oz), a “matte toasted almond”, and Pamplemousse (0.12 oz), a “matte warm coral pink”.


Swatches in natural indirect light


Swatches in direct sunlight

So far, I’m enjoying all the shades. I think my favorites so far may be Amaretto and Pamplemousse, which is exactly the opposite of what I expected. Amaretto seems a bit deep for very fair skin tones, but it actually looks quite muted and pretty after it’s blended out. Pamplemousse is BRIGHT! You need a very light hand for all of these as they are extremely pigmented, but especially for Rosé Spritz and Pamplemousse. It should also be noted that while Amaretto and Pamplemousse are described as matte on Sephora’s site, they do have a very small amount micro glitter when viewed up close, though it’s nowhere near as much as Rosé Spritz, which has all the pop of the two highlighters. While I do think Prosecco Pop is gorgeous, it is a bit noticeable on my skin. It has an obvious gold appearance instead of a natural-looking highlight. I’m wearing it as an eyeshadow today, and I think it looks beautiful!

Some other things to note: My palette came with a 1.5 ml sample of the Backlight Priming Filter. Becca claims this is a $136 value. I could be wrong, but when comparing the pan sizes in this palette to their normal pan sizes and prices, I could only come up with an overall value of $106. Still, considering this is retailing for $52, it’s an incredible savings. I was honestly expecting this to be more in the $70-$80 range.

Overall, this is a gorgeous palette. It’s definitely something to look into if you’re a collector, if you love Becca’s formulas, and if you love blushes and highlighters! Will you be ordering this when it goes on sale tomorrow?

Beauty, Makeup, Reviews, Skincare

Empties #5


everythingcaila_empties_5Time for another round of empties reviews! Some of these have been mentioned multiple times before, so I’ll try to be brief 🙂

Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle Conditioner | Super cheap, light conditioner with a pleasant scent (if you love tea tree, like I do). If you have really thick, coarse hair, this might not be the best for you, but my hair is pretty fine and thin, so it works great for me. I’ve gone through multiple bottles of this, and I’ve already purchased another one.

Trader Joe’s Ultra Moisturizing Hand Cream | This was a really thick hand cream, and it was great during the dry winter months, but I found it very heavily scented, and it made me queasy at times. I thought it had a wonderful texture, but I won’t be repurchasing it because of the scent.

Shea Radiance Black Soap Body Cleanser | This came in one of my Vegan Cuts boxes. I thought it was a decent body wash, but it didn’t blow me away. It had a slightly off-putting yellowy brown color and a minty, almost medicinal scent. I would not purchase the full size.

Seche Vite Top Coat | Seche Vite makes what is probably the most popular top coat in the world. It dries completely rock hard and super shiny within five minutes. The only downside is that it gets thick and gloopy if you don’t use it up quickly enough, and I had to throw this one out when it was only about half empty. I did repurchase it.

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion | This bottle lasted me forever! I always prefer unscented body lotions in a pump bottle, so this was perfect for me. Unfortunately, Aveeno is owned by Johnson & Johnson, who still support animal testing. Boo! I’ll be researching cruelty-free alternatives.

Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Shampoo | I think this has been in my last two empties posts. I really like this shampoo – it lathers and cleans my hair nicely, and I would repurchase it, but my husband doesn’t like the scent, so I’ve been trying other shampoos lately.

Kose Softymo Deep Cleansing Oil | I used this oil cleanser as a first step in my skincare routine for several months. It was excellent at removing makeup, including waterproof mascara, so I happily used up the entire bottle. When I finished it up, I wanted to try something without mineral oil, so I did not repurchase it.

Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Frizz-Free Curl Mousse | This is my second or third bottle of this mousse, and I really like it! For a while, I wasn’t sure if it gave as much definition as my old favorite, the Herbal Essences Totally Twisted Mousse, but after using that one again, I do prefer the Shea Moisture Mousse. I’m actually almost done with another bottle of this, and I will probably repurchase it.

Original BeautyBlender | Ah, the beautyblender. I convinced myself that I would never spend $20 on a tiny little sponge, but I’m so glad I finally gave in. I don’t use anything else to apply base makeup now. After this one got really beat up, I wanted to try out the Real Techniques Complexion Sponge again to see if it was really as good as I remember, and it’s soooo not. I repurchased the beautyblender asap!

Trader Joe’s Lavender Salt Scrub | I love this stuff. Always have, always will. I’ll be picking it up the next time I see it at TJ’s.

Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Conditioner | Strangely, I did not like this conditioner as much as the other two Coconut & Hibiscus products in this empties post. It was a decent conditioner, but my hate for the packaging overshadowed any love I could have had for it. When the product because about 2/3 empty, the pump completely stops working. So annoying! Shea Moisture really needs to change the packaging for their conditioners.

Neutrogena Clear Pore Cleanser/Mask | I repurchased this cleanser for longer than I wanted to because it’s difficult to find cleansers with benzoyl peroxide. Eventually, I knew I had to stop repurchasing it because it’s not cruelty-free. I haven’t found anything else with benzoyl peroxide to replace it, and my skin is actually doing really well. I’ve changed up my skincare a lot recently, so I may do an updated routine post soon.

Phew! That was a lot of products, and I already have more piling up! Hope you’re having a great week!