dope taupe

bb the taupes1.jpgthere’s just something about a taupe eye shadow, you know?  it’s such a beautifully subtle, natural color, giving any eye color a nice little pop.  it’s suitable for every day use as well as a heavier makeup look, while being grungy enough to not look overdone.  for me, my taupes are old reliables.

sephora shadow and liner in 04 taupe // the creamiest (obviously) and most pigmented of the bunch.  taupe is really the perfect cool-toned taupe, with flashes of lavender or silver depending on the light.  it’s described as a shimmer but i would say it’s more on the metallic end.  it reminds me somewhat of laura mercier amethyst but still a true taupe.  i highly recommend checking out these shadow sticks, they are the best on the market in my opinion.

rms beauty eye polish in myth // my other favorite cream taupe.  i’ve mentioned this shadow a million and one times, but it’s just that good.  it’s a sheer wash of glowy goodness; a cool-toned taupe with hint of minkiness.  i would say this can be hit or miss product depending on your shadow/lasting power/creasing preferences, but i love the messy, sheeny look it imparts.

colourpop super shock shadow in mixed tape // this is a new purchase but i’ve already worn it 3 times so that’s really saying something.  this is like the cream to powder, more pigmented version of myth.  it has those purple cool tones, but this time with subtle silver shimmers.  it looks extra cool on me, definitely on the silver side, which i love.  if you haven’t tried these shadows – and it took me forever to – they are just the coolest things.  they are a marshmallow consistency that’s impossible to describe, but they are a cream/powder crossover.  gorgeous.

l’oreal colour riche shadow in 201 // this is another very sheer and shimmery formula.  it’s a lot sheerer than i expected or would like it to be, but it’s beautiful either way.  sitting next to mixed tape you can really see the silver tones, so i would say this doesn’t contain as much purple as the others.  the shimmers are more noticeable than any of the other shadows i’ve mentioned, but still not in an obvious or tacky way.  i don’t know if i would repurchase this shadow just because of the lack of pigmentation, but i’m enjoying it in the mean time (i purchased this in london but the us shade pain au chocolat is identical).

gabriel cosmetics eyeshadow in sable // the only matte taupe i have, but the only one i need.  i absolutely adore this eye shadow, it’s the right amount of browny purpley pink without making me look sick or weird.  this is a really nice staple shadow that’s easy to wear and blend, but is a slight departure from a regular brown.  this also looks great when blended with the powdered shadows mentioned above.

sephora contour eye pencil in 15 flirting game // this is an honorable mention as it’s a liner and not a shadow.  this is a darker taupe than the sephora shadow stick, but still a true taupe and not a brown.  it has fine silver shimmers that i don’t find noticeable when i have it actually lining my eyes.  i’m really not an eyeliner person, but sometimes i want that definition, so i love this color to give me the eyeliner look without being nearly as harsh as black or brown.  i don’t reach for this often, but i think this is a product to check out – creamy, blendable, and long lasting.bb the taupes2.jpgbb the taupes3.jpg

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dope taupe

the lipstick that bohemian dreams are made

this bohemian’s dreams, at least.  it’s called stardust.  need i say more?  MY PERFECT LIPSTICK IS CALLED STARDUST.bb kosas stardust5.jpgok moving on from how happy that makes me.  i have been wanting to try a kosas cosmetics lipstick since they came onto the scene about two years ago.  they are full of great ingredients and don’t use any of the bad ones, including parabens, pthalates, mineral oil, phenoxyethanol, fragrance, petrolatum, and more.  all of kosas’ colors are natural-looking and understated, even the darker or brighter ones.  they are not only beautiful but unique, and a true staple for anyone, makeup lover or not.

so back to the colors.  i was pretty set on getting rosewater, which is described as a blushing rose, with a hydrating finish.  and then kosas released more shades for s/s 2016, including stardust.  and i was sold!  how could i resist a name like that?  stardust is described as a sheer neutral nude with pink and brown undertones, like a summer tan.  ok, now how could i resist THAT?bb kosas stardust2.jpgbb kosas stardust1.jpgbut in all seriousness, stardust is exactly how kosas describes it.  it is the perfect neutral brown pink, with not too much brown but not too much pink.  it is truly my lips but better.  it’s also the perfect level of color, so it doesn’t make it too obvious that i’m wearing lipstick.  the finish is hydrating but not slippery, and extremely long lasting.  honestly it really is like a summer tan – i just feel better with it on.

at $24, these lipsticks are expensive, but also in the exact price range of other natural and conventional lipsticks.  they are packaged in a beautiful black tube with white writing – i did hope it would be metal packaging but it’s plastic.  that was kind of disappointing but it also means that it is a lot lighter to carry around.  this is the first lipstick that i have wanted to wear every day and that doesn’t make me feel overdone – it’s just the perfect amount of oomph for me.bb kosas stardust3.jpgmy only question is, why did it take me so long to bite the bullet?  pun very much intended.stardust1.jpgbb kosas stardust4.jpg

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the lipstick that bohemian dreams are made

the concealer search

part of the fun of shopping, for me, is the search.  the search for the best product, the best price, the best shopping experience.  in fact, this is actually a defining characteristic of many millennials, research-backed buying vs impulse buying.  i learned this at a luncheon with refinery 29 while i was interning at elizabeth arden – how the methods of shopping of millennials effect retailers and how those retailers can persuade millennials to purchase in the moment or at least be a part of their research.  ok wooooah tangent, let’s get back to the point of this post.
bb bare minerals concealer review 1.jpgi have been on the hunt for a pot concealer that i could wear as a pseudo-foundation – basically something ultra creamy that i could use to even out my skin but wouldn’t look or feel like i had anything on.  i tried the w3ll people narcissist foundation stick first (obviously not a pot) and while i liked it a lot, the color match wasn’t perfect and it wasn’t exactly what i was looking for.  it’s nice for brightening my face, but i don’t find myself reaching for it on a daily basis.

my next thought was the rms “un” cover-up, which is really the exact product i want, but none of the colors work for me.  i’ve mentioned it a thousand times before, but my skin is very cool-toned, so the yellow-based shades of the “un” cover-up just do not work for me.  glossier’s stretch concealer seems to have a more pink-based range, but to be honest i’m not that drawn to that brand anymore.  i’m sooo tired of seeing all the marketing on every single instagram post that pops up on my feed and i’m just kind of over it, for now at least!  some of their products are still staples for me (milky jelly cleanser, moon mask, and coconut balm dotcom are constants) so yes that concealer looks like it would be pretty perfect, but i’m going to pass on it for now.

then, very excitingly, nars came out with their new soft matte concealers.  in pot form!  pot form of my favorite concealer! – so i thought.  but yes, as the name would suggest, these are more on the matte side.  i tested them out at sephora and they are truly beautiful and creamy, while finishing to a matte or at least satin-matte formula.  i just don’t think they would work on my drier skin and the coverage seems higher than what i’m looking for.

and finally, i remembered my old faithful – bare minerals.  i actually owned the bare minerals correcting concealer quite a few years ago now, but i never really knew what to do with it so i got rid of it.  i don’t typically wear concealer under my eyes and i wasn’t yet using any products like that on my face, so it went by the way side.  but while browsing ulta the other day, this little pot of magic came back to me.  bb bare minerals concealer review 2.jpgthis concealer is perfect for what i have been looking for.  it’s creamy, glowy, and stays put all day.  it can be sheered out for just a hint of coverage where needed, but is also perfect for spot concealing blemishes with a small brush.  the color – light 1 of course – is the ideal mix of cool and warm tones, so it works to brighten while also matching my skin perfectly (it’s described as a light neutral cool).  and truthfully, this does not budge.  i find my nars radiant creamy concealer shifts around throughout the day, but i napped in the bare minerals and it still didn’t reveal the huge pimple i have on my chin.  it doesn’t crease on my eyelids, nor under my eyes.  i don’t wear undereye concealer, but it’s nice to know that i can with this and it will look totally natural and not like some kim k triangle shit.  also, it will be really easy for me to get another shade to match my tan in the summer because the shades are divided between warm and cool tones (though i get tan, i’m still cool-toned) – something that has always been difficult for me.

and since i’m sure you were wondering, this little baby has some pretty great ingredients.  it scores a 2 on ewg, contains spf 20, and is free of parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, synthetic dyes, petrochemicals, phthalates, gmo’s, and triclosan. i do wish it didn’t contain phenoxyethanol, but that is not a huge problem for me at the moment.  i also got the full coverage concealer brush which was one of the only brushes i ever owned throughout high school and most of college, and it really is a good one.  i used to use it in my bare minerals powder to cover up, but it’s a great match for the correcting concealer as well.  you can use the tip of it to pinpoint conceal, and use the rest for blending.bb bare minerals concealer review 4.jpgbb bare minerals concealer review 3.jpgmaybe it’s nostalgia, but i honestly love bare minerals and their products.  they are always beautiful, effective, and great quality.  some of my favorites are the original foundation, the flawless definition mascara (the only mascara i wore through high school and college – i’m dying to get a fresh tube since i haven’t used it in a couple years), and the lip glosses (they are discontinuing the marvelous moxie line but i have plans to get a couple of the gen nude buttercream glosses – they are stunning!).  what’s your tried and true favorite brand?

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the concealer search

the natural deodorant duo

i have tried my fair share of natural deodorants, from that ridiculous crystal (does that work for anyone?) to tom’s.  i was starting to think that natural deodorants just wouldn’t work for me when i started reading more about deodorant layering.bb deo picks.jpgto start off, i should preface this by saying i’m not a huge armpit sweater.  to give you way too much information, i tend to sweat in my face before my pits.  yes, it is as unfortunate as it sounds.  so truthfully i couldn’t figure out why natural deodorants weren’t working for me.  but here’s what changed:

  1. i actually listened to that whole “armpit detox” thing // for a week before using my deodorants (or the 5-7 days that it took for me to get them in the mail) i didn’t use any deodorants and i exfoliated my armpits.  this consisted of concentrated washing in the shower with my dr. bronner’s bar soap – they recommend 30 seconds of concentrated washing to get rid of bacteria, etc. just for every day.  so i did that while also using a soft washcloth for actual exfoliation.  after the shower i made sure to really dry my armpits.  not only did i just feel good, but i felt like this prevented me from smelling for most of the day.
  2. baking soda free // most natural deodorants, especially those in pot form, contain baking soda.  while it is a great deodorizing ingredient, as we know from using it in our refrigerators, it is also extremely harsh on the sensitive skin of our underarms.  it can cause many people to break out in rashes or just suffer severe sensitivity, so i decided to forgo this ingredient.  my pick for my pot deodorant is the meow meow tweet baking soda free deodorant in lavender.  i feel that using a pot deodorant is really the way to go when going naturally, as you are taking the time to massage it into your underarms and the ingredients are not being transformed into a hard stick.
  3. add a roll-on for extra coverage // for days when i feel i need extra protection, i will also add a roll-on deodorant on top of my cream.  i think this has made all the difference in natural deodorants for me.  i had heard a ton about the ursa major deodorant stick, so when i decided to give natural deodorants another try this was immediately what i chose.  it’s minty and cooling and really quite effective.  if i’m not layering this, i will also wear it alone for days when i’m running late or just can’t be bothered with rubbing my armpits for 2 minutes.
  4. get used to the sweat // one of the strangest but best parts about natural deodorants is that they are not antiperspirants.  meaning, you are still going to sweat.  it’s difficult to get used to for sure, but i actually like it.  i like knowing that my body is functioning as it should – that my sweat and bacteria is leaving my body as opposed to being collected in my breasts.  gross, but true.  really i got used to this super fast and i don’t find that i smell anymore.  i mean, i’m still gonna smell after a long workout or whatever, but my natural smell is no longer as bad as when i was using antiperspirant.

so there you go!  it really is possible to convert from antiperspirants to natural deodorants.  it takes time, but i personally think it is completely worth it.  i’m looking forward to trying out other brands when i finish these two products up, but i highly recommend both of them.  plus they smell amazing when worn together!  xo.

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the natural deodorant duo