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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, 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

January Favorites

I only have a few favorites this month. I did a ton of shopping (like an embarrassing amount) but most of it either arrived within the past week, or I haven’t formed a full opinion on it yet. Here’s what I’m absolutely sure I loved in January:

Physicians Formula Mineral Wear Cushion Foundation | I know I just wrote about this last week, but it really was my favorite foundation in January. I wore it almost exclusively from the day I bought it. The natural appearance and light coverage combine to make a formula that works really well for me.

Wet n Wild Wonder Gel Nail Polishes | These were definitely the standout product of January. I absolutely love the opaque, long-lasting formula of these. I’m not a nail polish connoisseur, but I think these might just be the best ones I’ve tried. Check out my review here.

Wet n Wild Color Icon Blush in Rosé Champagne | When Wet n Wild reformulated their Color Icon blushes, they came out with a new color, Rosé Champagne. It’s a shimmery peach, and it is gorgeous. The shimmery particles aren’t chunky; they create just enough glow to make this a slightly highlighting blush. It has a warm undertone, but I think this is one of those everyday blushes that works with any look.

Christine Kobzeff | My last favorite of the month is a Youtuber I discovered a few weeks ago. Christine has a lifestyle channel that focuses on cruelty-free and vegan products. I love her “What I eat in a day” videos because the food she eats is simple and accessible, and it’s been great inspiration for me to try to eat better. Her personality is also really refreshing. I feel like most of the big beauty Youtubers are in their early to mid-20s, and their content is for teens and young girls. There’s nothing wrong with that of course, but I like that Christine’s content feels like it’s more for my age range.

Beauty, Lips, Makeup, Reviews

Review: Milani Moisture Lock Oil Infused Lip Treatments




Even though I wasn’t in the market for more lip products, I was intrigued by the Milani display in the new releases section of Walgreen’s. I suppose since my lips (whole body, really) have been frustratingly dry lately, “moisture lock” sucked me in. The colors and the packaging looked pretty, so I picked out the two shades I thought would be most flattering on me, 06 Revitalizing Grapefruit and 07 Protecting Pomegranate. According to Milani’s website, each lip oil has Jojoba, Avocado, and Tsubaki oils, and each one is infused with its own added oil to target specific concerns.

Straight home I went to test them out, and I was immediately disappointed. These have no color on the lips whatsoever! Maybe I’m crazy, but I expected some color, or at least some way to tell them apart. Aside from both being completely clear, they smell almost identical, and they both feel exactly the same on the lips. Of course, I didn’t want to count them as a total loss, so I did decide to keep them for a bit to test them each out, and there are definite pros and cons.

Pros: They are moisturizing. They give the lips a shiny gloss look without being gloopy or overly sticky. I also wouldn’t say they feel “oily” either; they’re like a normal lip gloss in most ways. Personally I like the scent, which to me is dead on for strawberry Jolly Ranchers. There is also no noticeable taste, which I prefer because it prevents me from licking my lips leading to more dryness. The packaging is quite pretty, and I actually like the extra wide applicator, which seems to be the same, or very similar to that of the Clarins Instant Light Lip Comfort Oils. They last on the lips a decent amount of time, about two to four hours if you’re not eating and drinking a lot. Milani is a cruelty free brand, and these lip treatments are all vegan.

Cons: To me, these seem like a gimmick. I like the concept of lip oils for sure, but if you’re going to come out with eight “shades”, make them distinguishable from each other in some way. Each of the eight lip oils is supposed to do something different for your lips, but if you read the shade names, they’re all synonyms for the same thing: moisturizing. The two I have look and feel exactly the same on my lips, and really, what else do we want a lip oil to do for us?

In conclusion, I don’t think these are bad at all for a lip gloss. They’re moisturizing, pleasant on the lips, and smell nice. If you’re in the market for a moisturizing, clear gloss, definitely pick one up, but just one!

Purchased at Walgreen’s for $8.49 each.



Beauty, Makeup, Reviews

Empties #3

I’ve been saving up my empties for an embarrassingly long time this time around. Hopefully I can keep this somewhat short!

DevaCurl No-Poo | This is one of my favorite curl-friendly shampoos. It has a pleasant “spa” scent that I love, and it’s very gentle. I haven’t repurchased it in a while simply because it’s quite expensive, and I tend to use it up very quickly.

Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle Conditioner | I loooove the entire Trader Joe’s Tea Tree line. I regularly buy the bar soap and the body wash. They’re so refreshing! This bottle is pretty huge, it lasted forever, AND it’s super cheap! I will definitely repurchase it sometime in the future.

L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil | This is my all-time favorite body wash. The scent is pure heaven. It starts as an oil, then lathers up into a soap. Since I can’t seem to find my go-to shaving cream, I’ve been using this for shaving too, and it works wonderfully! The one downside is that it’s expensive, and I always use it up so quickly.

Covergirl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3-in-1 Foundation | Ah, my holy grail foundation! This bottle lasted forever. I’m talking almost two years despite it being my most-used foundation. It’s a great medium coverage foundation that looks natural, doesn’t accentuate dryness or break up on me. Love, love, love.

Boscia MakeUp BreakUp Cool Cleansing Oil | I was not in love with this product. I used it to remove my makeup, and the first time I used it, the scent was so strong it burned my eyes. After I got used to it, I found that it removed my makeup well and did a decent job of cleansing, but it didn’t wow me. It’s quite expensive and I didn’t think it was any better at removing makeup than plain ol’ jojoba oil.

Maybelline Fit Me Concealer | This is still my favorite concealer. It’s creamy, and it covers blemishes and dark under eyes very well. I’ve just never found anything better!

Soap & Glory Hand Food | I carried this hand lotion around in my purse for a couple months, and I thought it was a pretty decent moisturizer. I’m not sure why, but I never like the scent of Soap & Glory’s products, Hand Food included. They are just too sweet and cloying for me. I would not repurchase this for myself, but I think it’s a good product.

Fresh Sugar Advanced Therapy Lip Treatment | This was a sample size, but it lasted forever! I’m always on the search for a killer lip balm, and I really liked this one. I thought it was very moisturizing, and it had great staying power. The scent is also lovely: lemony and sweet. The only thing I would note is that it seemed to get a bit melty and soft quite easily. Sadly, I don’t think I would ever buy a full size; I don’t think I can justify spending $25 on a lip balm.

Maybelline The Rocket Waterproof Mascara | No matter how many mascaras I try, I always come back to this one! I think I’ve repurchased it at least five times. It holds a curl like nothing else, and it’s volumizing without being clumpy.

Maybelline Age Rewind Eraser Concealer | I really like this concealer, but I don’t think I love it as much as everyone else seems to. I have to use it sparingly or I find that it accentuates any texture I may have under my eyes due to dryness. I did repurchase it because I think it does a good job of brightening my under eye area.

Anastasia Brow Wiz | I think I’m on my third or fourth Brow Wiz, and I may need to repurchase it again soon, which I will happily do because it is simply the best brow pencil out there.

Have you tried any of these products? Let me know your thoughts!