Browsing Tag

beauty blog

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, Makeup

Everyday makeup

currentmakeupcurrentmakeup2I’ve finally come up with a makeup routine that works pretty well for me. It doesn’t take too long, and I manage to look put-together by the end of it. In my February favorites, I mentioned the Wet n Wild Max Volume Plus Waterproof Mascara, the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette, and the Milani Lipstick in “Pretty Natural”. I’ve still been using these three items almost every day. Lately, my skin has been a bit better, so I feel more comfortable using a heavier foundation, which is typically the opposite of what people do, I know, but I find that when I put a heavy foundation over active breakouts and flaky skin, it makes everything look way worse. So, when my skin is behaving, the Tarte Amazonian Clay Full-Coverage Foundation makes my skin look radiant and smooth. I’ve been using the Wet n Wild Illumi-Naughty Highlighting & Concealing Pen, and I really like it. It doesn’t accentuate the dryness around my eyes, and it’s just peachy enough to cancel out some of the dark circles.

For quite a while, I hadn’t been wearing much eyeshadow, but my Vegan Cuts box changed that by introducing me to the 100% Pure Eye Creamstick Liner. While this is a dual-ended product, I’ve been wearing mostly the “Champagne” color. It’s such a unique shade! I’ve tried using both colors on my eyes at the same time, but they don’t blend together very well, so I’ve been using “Naked” and “Buck” from the original Urban Decay Naked palette to blend it out. I do think it can be worn alone for a one-shadow look, too. I’ve been trying out the Wet n Wild Eyeshadow Primer underneath, and I think it does a good job.

For the rest of my face, I’ve been cycling through the different blushes and bronzers I’ve recently purchased. I do like the Physician’s Formula Butter Bronzer, although it’s extremely subtle, and I really have to pack it on to see a bronzing effect. I chose the Wet n Wild Ombre Blush in “In a Purple Haze” for this look to match the coolness of the eyeshadow. Of course, I always use the Anastasia Brow Wiz, and I chose The Balm’s Mary Lou-Manizer.

There you have it! What are your everyday makeup staples lately?

Beauty, Caila's Favorites

February beauty favorites

febfavorites2016Surprisingly, I don’t have too many favorites this month despite trying so many new things. I guess I’m still forming opinions on most of them. Here are five products that did manage to solidify a place in my heart:

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette | I’ve actually had this palette for over a year, but I don’t think I’ve ever featured it as a monthly favorite. I especially like Dim Light; I’ve been using it to set my concealer around my eyes, and it’s the least detectable powder I’ve ever used. It gives the skin an airbrushed look, which, for someone with large pores like me, is a godsend.

Wet n Wild Max Volume Plus Waterproof Mascara | This is one of the best mascaras I’ve used, and also one of the cheapest! I wouldn’t say it’s the most volumizing mascara out there, but it holds a curl well and doesn’t make my lashes look spidery. It’s a great every day mascara that I’ll definitely be repurchasing.

Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser | I’m actually surprised by how much I like this cleanser! It’s the gentlest cleanser I’ve ever used, and I like that it can be used as a first step, makeup-removing cleanser, or as a regular cleanser on dry skin. It removes mascara well (I’ve used it to remove the Wet n Wild waterproof mascara, and it gets almost all of it) and it doesn’t strip my skin or make it feel tight at all.

Milani Color Statement Lipstick “Pretty Natural” | I know I’m not supposed to be buying more lipsticks, but…I guess I don’t have an excuse. I just wanted a new lipstick, okay?! This is a great natural color. I wouldn’t say it’s a “my lips but better” shade, because it is a slightly warm pink, but it’s definitely not bold. The formula is very good; it slightly stains the lips, so it continues to look good as it wears off.

Wet n Wild Contour Brush | In my review of the new Wet n Wild brushes, I mentioned that this one was probably my favorite of the bunch, and it continues to be. Aside from a powder brush to set my concealer, this is the only other brush I’ve been using. It’s super soft, and the bristles are very flexible, almost wispy. It’s great for when you want your contour and/or bronzer to be super blown out and blended.

What were your favorites this month? By the way, if you aren’t following me on Instagram, please do! I’m starting to post mini reviews on things like sheet masks that don’t really make it to the blog.

Beauty, Skincare

Glossier Phase 1 Set

glossier2glossier3glossier4I got myself a little birthday treat! Yes, today is my 27th birthday, and I can’t think of a better way to treat myself than to buy some skincare and makeup (and to eat pizza and cake all day) that I’ve been coveting for a while. I went back and forth for a long time about which Glossier items I wanted. Let’s be real, I want all of them, but I decided the Phase 1 set would be the best bet for getting an overall feeling for the brand’s products. I’ve used everything a couple of times now, so I thought I’d share some first/second impressions.

First, the set ($80) comes in a sturdy white box embossed with the Glossier “G”. I’ll definitely be keeping it to store bits and bobs. It also comes with a black tote, cute stickers, and two reusable zip pouches. The four items in the set are the Milky Jelly Cleanser, Priming Moisturizer, Balm Dotcom, and Perfecting Skin Tint. If you were to buy each item individually, it would come to $81, so it’s worth getting the Phase 1 Set for the box, the stickers, the pouches, and the tote. There are also a couple coupon codes for the site floating around the internet, which will give you $5-$10 off.

glossier6Milky Jelly Cleanser | This is my favorite product in the set so far. It’s the gentlest cleanser I’ve ever used, hands down. I’ve used it on wet skin like you would a normal cleanser, but since it doesn’t foam up at all, it’s a slightly weird sensation, like literally rubbing jelly on your face. The best part is that afterward, my skin didn’t feel tight at all. Even with Cerave Foaming Cleanser, which I’ve used for years and consider to be pretty gentle, I experience a slight tightness. I think I prefer using the Milky Jelly on dry skin as a first cleanse/makeup removing step. I was skeptical that it would actually work to remove mascara, but it did a surprisingly good job.

glossier5Balm Dotcom | I really like this stuff. I’ve only used it as a lip balm so far, and it works well. I’ve been looking for alternatives to Aquaphor, and so far, I think this is the best contender. While they do have similar ingredients, Balm Dotcom contains beeswax, and I can definitely tell that it feels waxier than Aquaphor.

glossier8Priming Moisturizer | I’ve only used this once, and while it was good, I’m a little scared to use it regularly as it contains an ingredient I suspect to be irritating to my skin. I know, I should have done better research before buying the set, but I figure if my skin didn’t freak out after one use, it’s safe to use maybe once or twice a week on non-consecutive days. I can say that it seems to be a pretty average moisturizer – not amazing, not horrible.

glossier7Perfecting Skin Tint | I’ve been all about lighter-coverage base makeup this winter. That being said, this is really light coverage, and it’s probably not enough for the average person who likes to cover dark circles and other skin concerns. I did know that beforehand thanks to other reviews, and I do like it. It’s a light, watery consistency that melts into the skin nicely. It’s not completely invisible though. Thanks to the flaky war zone that is my face right now, I can see it on my forehead and around my mouth if I look closely, so it is still makeup, and not a moisturizing product.

I’ve totally fallen for the “Skincare as makeup” approach that Glossier takes with its products, and their branding and marketing are some of the best out there right now. I’m a huge sucker for that kind of stuff, but I’m glad that the products are living up to the hype so far!



Beauty, Nails

More Wet n Wild 1 Step Wonder Gel Nail Polishes

morewetnwildwondergelDSC_8109I told you guys I would pick up more of these nail polishes! I knew I wanted Power Outage because I didn’t have a really good opaque black polish, and the other two, Cyantific Method and Bye Feluschia! (omg those names) also caught my eye. From what I can remember, the rest of the colors were various shades of either orange or purple, two colors I don’t really like to wear, so I don’t think I’ll be picking up any more of these.


One coat of each color


Two coats of each color

Power Outage is a wonderful opaque black, and while I haven’t worn it on all my nails yet, I don’t think I’ll be disappointed. As I mentioned in my first post about these, you could get away with only applying one coat, but I recommend two. I have worn Cyantific Method, and it was pretty good. The color isn’t my absolutely favorite, and it chipped pretty quick on me, but it’s not horrible. I’m pretty disappointed in Bye Felushcia! I had no idea it was a shimmery color. For some reason, I absolutely hate those kinds of polishes. I guess it’s because they remind me of all the crappy nail polishes I had when I was a little kid in the ’90s. I broke this out last night to paint my toe nails, and audibly groaned when I put it on the first nail. When I asked my husband what he thought of the color, he said “It looks kind of…gaudy?” I don’t know, I think these kinds of colors are really dated, and I’ll probably give this one away or see if I can exchange it.

Have you tried these yet? I’d love to know your thoughts and your favorite colors! Read my first post about these here.


Beauty, Lips, Makeup

Three current favorite lipsticks

threelipsticksLast week, I wrote about getting rid of three quarters of my lip products (and a lot of other stuff). I may love makeup, but I’m not the kind of person who wears a different lipstick every day. I find that almost every lip product, no matter the brand or formula, is too high maintenance for me. I’m always drinking something (usually coffee or water), and I hate having to constantly check my lipstick in a mirror and touch it up. So, I’m trying to have some will power and stop buying lip products once and for all. Of course, if something really catches my eye, and I’m confident that it’s a good formula and that I’ll wear it often, I won’t feel bad about buying it.

Here are three of my favorite lip sticks that made it through the purge.

threelipsticks2The first is L’Oréal Le Matte Lipcolour Stick in She’s So Matte. This is a warm, neutral shade; it’s one of the few peachy lipsticks that I think suits me. As far as formula, this one of pretty long-lasting. I don’t have to reapply that often, and it continues to look alright on the lips as it wears off. The second two products are actually quite similar to each other. Colourpop Matte Lippie Stix in Lumière and Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipstick in Lovecraft are both matte mauve colors. Lumière is just a touch more purple and Lovecraft pulls slightly grayer on the lips. The lasting power of both is also pretty similar. My tube of Lovecraft came in a sample bag, and if I ever run out of it, I don’t think I’d purchase the full size since it’s $21 and the Colourpop Lippie Stix are only $5 and so similar in formula.

I’m really surprised that three of my most-worn lipsticks are matte; I tend to hate the way matte products feel on the lips, but these are all comfortable and long-lasting.