Hello frenz and welcome back! It's the end of August and that means it's time for a favorites list! I can't tell if this month flew by or if it took forever. Seriously, this month felt never ending but I'm still a little shocked that tomorrow is September. Anyways, I've had a lot of favorites this month, but I narrowed it down to some holy grail products I've this month. Let's jump right into this, shall we?!

First up is Benefit's POREfessional Primer. I actually just found out that this is considered a primer hahaha, well good, because that's what I've been using it as. My sample size is pretty much empty, I'm having to curl the tube and squeeze out product lol, but this primer is AAAA-MAZINGGG. I have huge pores on my nose and the tops of my cheeks, and this seriously fills them in and blurs them better than any other pore blurring product I've tried (and I've tried a ton). You can actually see it fill in your pores as soon as it's rubbed into the skin. It has a smell that I would call "cheap chocolate" haha, like those cheap chocolate quarters or something — but it's not a scent that turns me away. I actually quite like it! This is a little pricey, at a whopping (according to Sephora's website) $12.00 US (sample size) to $49.00 US (full size). I'm OBSESSED with this stuff, and plan on repurchasing this weekend! Maybe I can talk my boyfriend into buying me the full size lol…MAYBE.

Next up on the chopping block is Too Faced Shadow Insurance Eye Shadow Primer. Please excuse my veiny wrist and hand. They're gross, I know lol. I bought this product off of Wish (before they priced high end makeup accordingly lol). I can't remember the exact price I purchased this for, but I believe it was under $10! Looking at Sephora's website, it looks like the packaging on this product has changed, which I can believe because I purchased this like two years ago. I honestly can't tell differences between eye shadow primers other than their consistency. I don't buy nor test out too many eye primers, but I really love this primer for dark, smokey looks and for working with bright colors. It holds color incredibly well without creasing. I try not to use this on a daily basis because I know I'll have to repurchase at full price lol, which is a total of $20.00 US. I guess that's not too bad!

Onto one of the greatest drugstore finds, ELF High Definition Under Eye Setting Powder. It might be one of the best drugstore setting powders.It's very finely milled and you don't need too much, which is good because the pot it comes in is rather tiny. The old formula used to have a bit of sparkle in it, which is what I think turned a lot of people off to it, but the formula now is INCREDIBLE. I don't know how it does it, but it has this ability to blur your under eyes. I use a powder puff and just pat it into my skin (sometimes my whole face, lol). It sets your concealer so friggin' well, it doesn't budge AT ALL. Seriously, it takes a lot of rubbing to get my concealer off at the end of the day. I heard from a beauty YouTuber (I can't think of who), that it can be used as a dupe for the Laura Mercier Setting Powder. At $6.00 US, you can't get a better and more affordable under eye setting powder!

Speaking of concealer, I rediscovered Maybelline's Dream Lumi Highlighting Concealer and OH MY GOD GUYS, why did I ever stop using this?! The shade I have is in Radiant and holy crap, does it live up to its name. It's rather apricot-y when you first put it on the skin, but when you blend it out, it leaves your under eyes so bright and concealed (haha duh). I would say that this is a high coverage concealer. It covered up a huge zit on my cheek once so that's good enough for me. The only thing I wish was different is the tube it comes in. I always feel like these type of packages jip you out of product because it comes out through the brush, but it gives out more product than anyone would ever need. I dunno, am I the only one that thinks that? Anyways, this is a whopping $6.44 US at Wal-Mart (which is where I purchase 95% of my drugstore makeup, btw). You can't go wrong with trying this stuff out!

You didn't think I forgot about eye shadow, right? Good, because I didn't. Please excuse my wonky shaped arm lol I broke it when I was a kid and it didn't heal correctly. Anyways, Maybelline's The Nudes palette is literally my holy grail. I use this palette every single day. I live and breathe for this palette. I bought this a little after it dropped a few years ago, and to be honest, I didn't like it at first.

It's definitely one of those palettes that needs to be broken in. The top layer, for some reason, doesn't have a lot of pigment, but once you get past that, HOLY COW. They are so pigmented and blend like a breeze. There's also no fallout, even with the darkest shades! I actually use the medium brown shade to fill in my brows! If I have wear any brown or neutral eye look, there's a 100% chance I used this palette. For being a $10.00 US drugstore palette, I would say it's pretty damn good and it's one of my holy grail products.

Okay, let's talk about foundation. Having fair, oily skin with huge pores and dry patches makes it really hard for me to find a good foundation. I'm super picky —they need to be demi-matte, medium to full coverage and not be too light or too dark (duh). You'd be surprised how hard it is for me to find the correct shade lol, but again, ELF has outdone themselves with their Flawless Finish Foundation (with SPF 15). This foundation has everything I could ever want, including being only $6.00 US! This foundation has the ability to be full coverage, but still look like your skin! It looks a little wonky in the swatch, but once it's blended well and dries, it lives up to the adjective "flawless."

The only thing I would say is you shouldn't over apply with this because it will turn cakey…fast. It also has a floral-ish scent. I don't know why I want to say it smells like peonies because I don't know what the fluff those smell like, but it's the first thing to come to mind when I smell this. For someone who can't stand floral smells, I can handle this scent. It's not too strong and it's rather refreshing! If your skin is sensitive to scents, I wouldn't recommend you use this, but if not, go out and buy it. You won't be disappointed!

Two more products left, guys, and both being my favorite part of doing makeup. I recently rediscovered Anastasia Beverly Hills' Powder Contour Kit. I forgot how fabulous this kit was! This is another product I bought off of Wish, most likely under $20 (can't be sure). It came broken (so sad), but it's still very usable. I love how easy these are to blend. They're smooth and not patchy at all. For being the medium to light kit, I would say that these are still way too dark and warm for me, so it definitely helps to go in with less product and a light hand. I'm not sure why I stopped using this but it's definitely back in my good graces. I can't believe I got this so cheap when it's $40.00 US at Sephora. I definitely think it is worth the money anyhow and chances are, I'll repurchase the refill pans.

Last, but certainly not least, is my holy grail highlighter – L'Oreal True Match Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator. I have a few highlighters that I think are gorgeous, but I can't help but always reach for this one. I'm one that LOVES a blinding highlight, and that's exactly what this one does. I use the whitest shade the most, but they're all so gorgeous. They're incredibly pigmented (more in person than through camera) and they don't accentuate skin texture. It has some sparkle in it, but not enough to bother me. I bought this at CVS for $12.99 US and it was so worth it. I've had it for over a year now and not even close to hitting pan. 10/10 for L'Oreal on this highlighter!

It was hard not to add more products to this list, but we would be here all night. What were some of your favorites this month? I'd love to hear about 'em! Until next time, XO.


Rimmel London Stay Matte Liquid Lipstick Review

Hello frenz and happy Monday! First, off let me say how sorry I am about the absence of posts last week. I could lie and say I had a lot going on, but the truth is that I wasn't in the mood to blog. I've been feeling a little down about my blog recently and that's why I've shied away. But good news! I'm back with some awesome products to talk about! I went shopping sometime last week and picked up some new makeup and today, I want to talk about the Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Lipsticks. Are you excited? I'm excited! Let's get right into this, shall we?!

It seems like every makeup brand now has their own liquid lipstick, whether it be matte or not so much. I found Rimmel's Stay Matte liquid lipstick at Wal-Mart and it was priced at $4.97. I've honestly never tried any liquid lipstick (I'm a noob to new things), and I figured this one was inexpensive enough that I might give it a go, and if I didn't like it, then it would only be $5 down the drain. You get .21 fluid ounces per tube and it is good for two years.

Unfortunately, this product is not cruelty-free…

This liquid lipstick line has 14 shades, ranging from brown nudes, pink nudes and some darker and fun colors. I picked up the shade Mocha, which is a medium brown nude shade. I always get nervous when purchasing nude lip colors because it could go one of two ways; either I look like a walking corpse or I look insane. My skin tone is pretty fair with a pink undertone, so it's very difficult to find any brown nude that flatters my skin. I hoped for a miracle when picking up this shade.

Rimmel claims that this product will give you bold color with just one stroke, that it is kiss proof, transfer proof, water proof, and that it is lightweight with a velvety matte finish. If you follow me on Instagram, you saw the initial swatch of this product last week on my story.

It's very pigmented and not streaky, even with one quick swipe. It comes with a pointed sponge applicator, which is great because it ensure that you get a decent amount of product, instead of having to dip into the tube often.

It has a faint sweet smell, reminiscent of the scent from the Rimmel Long Lasting Lipstick line. It dries completely matte and is completely budge and transfer proof (at least upon swatching). It doesn't take long to dry, maybe a minute and a half tops.

When applying to the lips, it is very soft and creamy. You don't need to constantly dip into the product and it doesn't dry instantly, so you're able to layer without it getting cakey or patchy. It's not extremely lightweight, but it's not so heavy that you feel like you can't move your lips. It doesn't get too sticky and there's no pulling on your lips as it dries to a matte finish.

The initial swipe of the lips with my finger after drying proved this lipstick to be smudge and transfer proof. I also kissed my dog to test the claim of this product being kiss proof, and indeed, it is. Also, the color is gorgeous. It was surprisingly the perfect brown nude for me! (peep the selfie for some lipstick action)

I wore this product for over eight hours. It does become a little drying on your lips as the day goes on. I'm one of those people that constantly licks their lips and the corner of their mouths, so I was able to notice the drying feeling almost instantly. However, I was able to lick my lips without this product moving or fading whatsoever.

I decided halfway through the day to apply a lip gloss on top of it. I wanted to see how it worked with other products laying on top. It stayed well with the gloss and even stayed put when the gloss was removed. I was able to tell a bit of fading after the gloss was removed, but nothing that called for reapplication. Even throughout eating and drinking, this product didn't move a bit nor did the color fade.

By the end of the day, you could tell that the color faded just a smidge and that the corners of my mouth were completely without product (which I expected to be the case anyways). There wasn't noticeable cracking or patchiness. It stayed put suprisngly well throughout daily activities.

I hate wearing lip color for the main reason that it never stays put and I constantly have to reapply, but this product was not like that at all. I was able to apply it once and forget about it. I even checked on it at random parts of the day to see if there was any fading or cracking, but it looked just as perfect as it did after the initial application!

All in all, I give this product a 10/10. For being $5 from the drugstore, this product is really one of the best. I've always liked Rimmel, especially their Stay Matte line. Their products keep getting better and better. I can't wait to pick up more shades to try! What are your favorite liquid lipstick brands? I'd love to hear about 'em!

BATTLE OF THE PALETTES: W7 Lightly Toasted vs. Joly NK1

Hello frenz and Happy Friday! I hope you all had a wonderful week! I can't believe it's Friday already! I'm not sure where these days are going, but today is going to be fun because we're going to be talking about eye shadow palettes! I have about 12 palettes currently, some I use frequently and then there are some that I forget I even have (I can't be the only one). Today I will be talking about two palettes by two brands that don't have too much publicity…so let's just jump right into this, shall we?!

In one corner, weighing a whopping three grams with an expiration of five years is the Joly NK1 palette. I purchased this palette off of Amazon about two years ago. The colors were insanely similar to the Urban Decay Naked palette, and I thought it would be a possible dupe.

In the other corner, coming in at a whopping 15.6 grams and an expiration of 18 months is the W7 In The Buff: Lightly Toasted palette (ain't that a mouthful).

I purchased this palette around the same time that I purchased the NK1 palette, again, hoping it would be a dupe for UD Naked. Do you see an ongoing theme here? I can't tell you for sure if either of these palettes are dupes for UD Naked because I've never owned it, nor have I ever swatched it, but the shades look very similar.

So in preparation for this post, I did some research on both of these palettes. When I looked up the brand Joly on Google, I found the brand's website…which is rather sketchy, if you ask me. They don't have very many products, which I thought was a bit odd.

They have three eye shadow palettes; NK1, NK2 and NK3, which I'm assuming are supposed to be similar to the UD Naked line. They have a set of brushes, along with a brush stand and some powder puffs. When going to their about page, they don't specify anything about the company or the makeup they sell on their site…instead they talk about baby care products?

The whole site was incredibly confusing and gave zero insight into what the company is and what they do. They list that they are based out of California, but then list another address out of China. I won't even begin to tell you about their description of the product, because it was an absolute mess and was probably written by someone with less than half a brain stem. It also says to keep away from contact with eyes…but it's eye shadow so I'm confused???

Upon doing further research on this company and its products, I found absolutely nothing, which is really bizarre to me. If they are selling enough products to be at the top when you search on Amazon, then why isn't there more information about them? Am I just looking in the wrong place?

W7 is a popular brand in the UK, while also having an online store for the States. They have a vegan line, as well as hella palettes to choose from, along with other products like setting powder, foundation, eyeliner and whatever else your little heart desires. At least this brand's website seems a lot more legit that Joly!

The Lightly Toasted palette has 12 colors, ranging from nudes to coppers to golds. There are two matte shades, with the rest being shimmery and metallic. W7 also claims that the colors are highly pigmented with little fallout and they're not prone to creasing. Well, we're just going to put that to the test.

Now first off, these palettes aren't exact matches. A few of the shades are darker or lighter or more metallic than the latter, but all in all, they're seemingly similar palettes.

NK1 doesn't have shade names listed in or on the packaging, whereas Lightly Toasted has them listed on the back. If you're anything like me, you love your shade names — ten points to Lightly Toasted.

My arm isn't long enough to swatch 24 colors, so I split the swatches up into four each, going from left to right in the palettes.

As you can see, the beginning four nude shades hardly have any pigmentation from either palette, so I wasn't too impressed and was concerned about the pigmentation on the eyes. The NK1 palette is a lot creamier to the touch than Lightly Toasted. With Lightly Toasted, you really had to press hard to get product, and the product you did get had very little pigment.

You can see with the darker shades that they are highly pigmented for both palettes, although they still aren't exact matches for one another. Lightly Toasted has more sparkle in the shades, whereas NK1 has more of a metallic sheen.

When applying to the eyes, I find that the creaminess of NK1 gives it the ability to blend out seamlessly, without completely blending away. It also left fall out, but not enough to be bothered by it. Lighlty Toasted wasn't patchy when applied to the eyes, but it was a bitch and a half to blend, especially the darker colors. The metallic colors weren't as metallic as the NK1 shades and the two darker shades in Lightly Toasted (Up in Smoke and Dawn) have EXTREME sparkle to them. So when I tried to smoke out my look a little bit with the black shade, the sparkle and uneasiness to blend made those shades hard to work with.

Below is the look that I created using both of these palettes. The camera captured the colors beautifully. Can you spot the differences?

W7 claims that Lightly Toasted has little fall out, so at least I knew what I was getting myself into. What was most annoying about the fallout was that it was really only present on the darker shades, which were the most pigmented; leaving the process of wiping away the fallout a pain in the ass. It would just smudge and the color wouldn't budge (haha I made a rhyme). The creaminess of the NK1 palette causes the shadow to break and crumble, so I definitely had to use a lighter hand when dipping into those shades.

I wore these shadows all day (like 8 hours) to give you guys an accurate review of their wear. Today was a hot one – though I rarely was outside, I could still feel my skin build up more oil under my foundation. These shadows were really put to the test.

On the NK1 eye, you can see that the metallic sheen has worn off almost completely. Although the picture gives this look better justice, in person, you can see that the outer and darker shades have starting to slide a bit into the crease with lost pigmentation.

Lightly Toasted is still going strong. The metallic shade has hardly lost its sheen, although you can tell that awful blending job on my outer V with Up in Smoke (I told you they're hard to blend!)

These weren't the worst palettes I've ever used. Most of the colors have decent pigmentation and the formula of both weren't terrible, although I prefer the creaminess of the NK1. They're not something I think

I would use for everyday looks. I wish that there were more matte shades in these palettes. I love shimmer and metallics but it's hard to work with almost all shimmer shades. NK1 went on so pigmented and smooth — I really wish that pigmentation would've lasted throughout the day.

If I had to choose one to go with, I would favor Lightly Toasted. Although I wish they were creamier and had better pigmentation in their nude shades, I really like that the shadows lasted all day without creasing or smudging. It's a really decent palette for only $12.95 and I can't wait to try more from W7! I don't want to shit on the Joly brand because this is the only thing I've tried from them, but I really wish their website made more sense. Their palette isn't horrible, but there's very little information available about it which drives me a little bonkers.

I know this post was long, but I had a lot to say about these palettes. What good is having a makeup blog if you're not going to write detailed reviews? I had a lot of fun using these shades and doing the research to put this post together — let me know in the comments if you'd like to see more Battle Of series! What are some of your favorite eye shadow palettes? I'd love to hear about 'em!

How to Get Healthier and Longer Hair

Hello, frenz and Happy Humpday!! These weeks have been soaring by for me lately but it's okay because it makes us that much closer to Halloween – the land of horror movies and costumes and fun wigs!

Speaking of wigs and hair, today I wanted to talk about some of the ways that I got my hair back to good health and grew it a little longer. I've noticed recently how long it has gotten, although it's still not as near as long as I want it. I've only been doing these methods for about five months, but they really seem to work — so I thought it would be fun to share some of the things I did to make my hair healthy and longer! Let's just jump right into this, shall we?!

First, let me give you a little background on my hair. I've been bleaching and using boxed dyes since I was a preteen (over 10 years). I've gone from platinum white, the whole way to black and every color in between. I've had periods of time where it would be incredibly long, and then times that I would cut it insanely short. Most of the time with my hair short was spent researching how to grow my hair back out. It's been a lifelong struggle but I think I finally found some secret weapons to healthy and longer hair!

Last winter, I dyed my hair from blonde to brown to red. I hated it after three weeks and desperately wanted my golden locks back. I went to my local Rite Aid and purchased the Color Oops Color Stripper // $9.99, extra strength, just in case. It was a miracle in a bottle as all of the yucky red and brown tones were removed from my hair in as little as an hour. The color left on my head was a yellow, orange blonde so I just threw a dark blonde box dye over it and called it a day.

This is an absolute no brainer when wanting to grow your hair out. After using the bit of chemicals to get my hair close to my natural color, I put a halt to hair coloring and processing. Going back to your natural color relieves the pain of walking around with yucky colored hair and kind of gives you a fresh dew-over (pun intended!) My hair has decent texture and a bit of life to it, so I'm not too hesitant on leaving the heat tools in my drawer. There are a lot of different ways to style your hair without heat, if you feel the need to style it!

Why not give yourself a relaxing scalp massage at the end of the day? During my hair growing research, I stumbled upon the method of giving yourself a scalp massage to circulate the blood on your scalp and stimulate the hair follicles, thus causing your hair to grow. I give myself "scratchies" because I like my head being scratched and it works the same as a massage. Not only does this make your hair grow, but it's also soooo relaxing!

It sounds gross, but you'll be able to tell a difference in your hair in as little as a few weeks. Washing your hair every day strips the essential oils off of your scalp and out of your hair. Those essential oils are essential for a reason, as they leave your hair naturally moisturized. I wash once every four or five days, depending on the activities I've been doing. I'm able to do that because I don't build up a lot of oil in a short period of time, so if you're more oily, I suggest washing every other day or until your oil regulates and you can go longer.

Using a sulfate-free shampoo makes your hair healthier and smoother because it doesn't use harsh chemicals to cleanse the hair, leaving it noticeably healthier. I currently use the Suave Professionals Color Protectant Shampoo // $1.99 and Renpure Originals Coconut Cream Conditioner // $3.98 for the days that I wash my hair.When I bought the Suave shampoo, I was under the impression that it was sulfate-free (the internet lied to me). It turns out that it is NOT sulfate-free, but it does have less sulfate concentration. It still leaves your hair feeling silky and moisturized.

This is something that I believe has helped my hair immensely. By only washing your scalp, you're not stripping your ends of the oils that were combed through from your scalp. Instead, you're cleansing the scalp of excess oil and dirt while also letting the remaining shampoo gently cleanse the ends as you rinse.

When applying your conditioner, focus the product more on the ends and work your way up. This gives your ends a little bit of extra nourishment. Also, if you work too much product too far up, it can weigh down your hair and leave your scalp oily.

Hot water can pull the moisture out of your hair leaving it dry and lifeless. By rinsing with cool to lukewarm water, you're letting the moisture set into your hair rather than being stripped out. Try to refrain from over rinsing the conditioning product out of your hair.

I heard Nicole Guerriero mention this in one of her videos years ago and it's been something that has always stuck with me. Using a cotton t-shirt rather than a towel to dry your hair can be beneficial, in that a t-shirt isn't as dense or heavy as a towel. As you pull at and squeeze your hair, a towel has more density to tug and pull at split ends, causing your hair to break as you're drying it. A t-shirt is made of a softer material and will be more gentle on your hair!

After every wash, I always make sure to add a leave-in conditioner and oil to the ends of my hair to give them some extra moisture. The ends of your hair can become dry and break off, not allowing your hair to grow. My leave-in conditioner of choice is Garnier Fructis Sleek-n-Shine // $3.37. I've used it for years and it leaves my hair soft, without the extra weight.I also currently use a tiny amount (a little goes a long way) of Louanna 100% Pure Coconut Oil // $3.68 on my ends.Don't overdo it with the coconut oil, or else you'll look like an oil spill happened on your head. It gives extra moisture to your ends while also protecting against split ends!

For the days in between washing, I'll usually use a dry shampoo. I've experimented with a few different brands and formulas, but have recently been in love with the Not Your Mother's Beach Babe Texturizing Dry Shampoo // $4.84.It leaves your hair feeling like a fresh wash, gives it some beachy texture and it smells like a tropical vacation. It also doesn't leave any white residue, which is a huge bonus.

Well, there you have it — these are the methods that I've found to really help keep my hair healthy and make it grow. Let me know in the comments if you've tried any of these and if they work for you. What are some of your favorite methods to healthy hair? I'd love to hear them!

SFX MAKEUP TIPS: Reference Pictures

Hello, frenz and happy Monday! I hope you all had a fantastic weekend. I took a little break from makeup this weekend to heal my poor, dry facial skin. The cocoa butter has yet again saved the day and returned my skin to its regular, moisturized state. Anyway, today's post is all about my favorite type of makeup…that's right, we're gonna be talking about special effects makeup! Let's jump right into this, shall we?

I've been doing special effects makeup for about three weeks, maybe a little longer. I've definitely progressed since my first go at it and I've learned certain things along the way. One of the most important things I've learned is using reference pictures to bring your look to life. There's one specific look that I think of when I talk about referencing, and that's my third-eyed gypsy look that I created a few weekends ago (or maybe sooner, I don't know, I'm terrible with time). 

What you don't know about that look is that the one I posted on Instagram was the second rendition. The original look was thrown together in about an hour…and looks nothing like the version that took me two hours, just on the eye alone.

image1 (3)

If you look at these pictures side by side, you can obviously tell which one is better. You can see on the first one there is absolutely no shading and highlighting. The pupil and iris itself look completely fake. There is no tear duct detail. There is no illusion of the eye actually being a part of my forehead. The funny thing about the first one is that I was actually planning on that being the final look! But I couldn't do it — I didn't have it in me to call that wimpy, pathetic looking eye the final product. I scratched the idea completely.

My future mother-in-law tagged me in an article a few days later about a girl who does illusion makeup. I will link it here because this girl is seriously phenomenal at SFX and illusions. Anywhoo, as I was scrolling through, I saw this look that she created of eyes all over her face.

As you can see, the details are immaculate and the eyes look so incredibly real. That's when I knew I had to do the third-eyed gypsy makeup over again. And that's when a new skill was formed.

What I learned from this is that you must have something to go off of, especially if you're a beginner. I saved the picture and studied it. I referenced it throughout the entire process of creating my own eye. Now, obviously, I didn't copy it completely. Chances are she used entirely different products than I, and I don't have the skill that she has. But the point is that referencing can make all the difference. I referenced the shading on the whites of her eyes. I referenced the shading around the outer eye to make it appear circular and to give the illusion of it being a part of my face. It turned into something I never in a million years thought I could do. I've been using reference pictures ever since, and it has progressed my SFX skill to the high heavens.

You have to remember that makeup is an art. In art classes, pictures are referenced and recreated. It's the same with SFX makeup or even every day makeup. If you're really trying to get into SFX makeup but can't quite get the hang of it, try studying and referencing. And hey, even if you're not into makeup, you can always try this tip for painting or drawing or whatever kind of art you're into. It might make all the difference.spooky


Hello, frenz and happy FriYAY!!! If you read my last post, you would know that I am changing up my blog. What I've come to decide is that I like makeup and that's what I want to write about. I apologize for all the confusion that has come with the change up, but makeup is something I love and it's something I want to pursue. I hope you all stick around to read my new content! As you can tell by the title, today is First Impression Friday, so let's jump right into this, shall we?

Let's talk about brows. Brows shape your face and they can either make or break your look. I've been fussing with my brows for YEARS and have just recently learned what works well for me and what doesn't. Now for the record, I don't have one set brow product. I use Maybelline's Nude eye shadow palette for my brows. Go ahead and judge me. The only brow product I've found that I truly love is the Anasatasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz, but I went through it super quick and I lack the bread to repurchase. So since then, I've been experimenting with different brow products, as well as shadows, to give me the perfect brow.

So today, I'm going to talk about a very popular brow product, E.LF.'s Duo Eyebrow Kit.image3
This product has been in my collection since about this time last year. I've wanted to try it forever, but could never find the blonde shade that I needed. I once tried the dark shades and I immediately regretted that decision and it turned me off to the product for some time. But alas, my local Wal-Mart had the blonde shade in stock and I purchased it for a measly $3…only to let it sit in my collection. Yesterday, I stumbled upon it and thought to give it a go.

This product is a duo, with a pigmented wax and a powder. The wax is a darker shade than the powder. It has more of a red undertone, whereas the powder is more ashy, with a cooler undertone. It comes in a tiny compact with a mirror attached to the inside top of the lid. Also included is a mini double-ended applicator; one side being an angled brush and the other being a small blending brush.image2
I chose not to use the applicator that came with it and, instead, reached for my E.L.F. angled brush, mainly because it has a longer handle and it's what I always use to fill in my brows.

By just looking at the pigmented wax, you wouldn't think it would be any different from their darker shades, but upon swatching, you can see that it is a much lighter brown, almost like a dirty natural blonde.image1 (2)

When applying the wax, it goes on very smooth and was more pigmented than I had anticipated. It worked well and filled in the part of my brows that were fuller, but the formula's consistency made it hard to fill in the sparse parts of my brows. It has a rather oily consistency and smudged easily. Wiping away the edges of my brow with my finger smudged the ends entirely. I couldn't really reach the product into the arch of my brow where I needed more coverage. I tried going in with the powder portion and it did a decent job at mattfying the wax, but was no good at giving my arch coverage.

Once I got the outer part of my brows filled in as much as I could, I started working on the inner part. My brows have been over-plucked for years (currently trying to grow them back), so I hardly have any hair on the inner brow, and the hair that I do have is a very light blonde. Again, the consistency gave me trouble on giving the illusion that I had full brows in the front. Even when applying the wax and blending it out, you could see the distinct space between where my eyebrow started and the "illusion" begins. It was nearly impossible to make hairlike strokes with the wax, leaving my brows blocky and thick. Again, going in with the powder only helped to mattify the wax, but didn't give me the coverage and illusion I desired. I ended up just coating my brows in the wax the best that I could, and then put the powder over it to try to make them appear less oily.

I wore this product for a good eight to ten hours before taking it off. It did a fairly good job at keeping my brows in place where I had hair, but as the day went on, you could see the sparseness of product in the inner part of my brow. It seemed like the mattifying effect that the powder gave completely wore off as the day went on and as my skin became more oily. If you would've seen me, you wouldn't have thought that I was a beauty blogger or that I had any clue what I was doing with a brow product. Looking in the mirror at the end of the day, my brows looked sparse, discolored and oily.

I really wanted this product to work out. E.L.F. is one of my favorite drugstore lines. They're inexpensive, cruelty-free and most of their products work fantastically for me. This duo eyebrow kit, however, was a complete bust…but I'm not giving up hope.

I want to try it again with the powder I currently use to fill in my brows and see if that makes much of a difference. I really want to like this product and find a way to make it work. Perhaps if you have fuller brows, this would work better for you. Like I said previously, the consistency didn't allow me to create the illusion of thick and full brows where my hair was more sparse. I wanted to take pictures of the inconsistency in color, but unfortunately, it wasn't showing up on camera…but it was a disaster in person.

Let me know in the comments if this product works for you and if you have any recommendations of how to make it work — I would LOVE to hear them. I hope you all have a fantastic weekend!rl


Liebster Award Nomination 2017 & My Nominees

Hello frenz and welcome back! This post is extra special and near & dear to my heart. I was nominated by the lovely Rena for the Liebster Award! For those of you who aren’t familiar with what that is, it’s an award for bloggers. No trophy involved, just recognition and support for your blog. It’s a big deal for me, because I’ve literally never been nominated for anything. I once won a 3rd place Track and Field award in elementary school, but that’s about the extent of my award winning abilities. If you haven’t, go check out Rena’s blog. She’s a cat loving personal blogger who writes about some pretty relatable stuff – plus she’s super sweet, so give her blog a read. Now, without further adieu, let’s get into this thing! 

Rena’s questions to me are as follows, with my answers. I hope you enjoy getting to know a little more about me!

1. What is your go-to dressed up outfit? Every time you want to look done up, what do you tend to do?
Well, let’s address the outfit portion — I usually where anything that I feel comfortable and confident in. It really depends on my mood. Sometimes I want to wear a dress, and other times leggings and a cute top can suffice as “dressed up”. Don’t judge — comfortable can also be dressy. As for what I do to look done up, I definitely gotta fill in these sparse brows and add a sharp as shit winged liner.

2. What is the last book you read?
I’m one of those people that read half a book and then put it down and start another one. I’m currently in the middle of reading three different books, but the actual last one would be Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult. This book caught my eye on Walmart’s book shelf AGES ago, mainly because it had Salem in the name. I hardly remember what it’s about but I know I really enjoyed it. Perhaps I’ll make it the fourth book in my ongoing reading frenzy.

3. Why did you choose the blog platform you are on?
Mainly because I wanted a site where I was able to gain followers straight from the platform. Plus, I’ve heard very good things about WordPress. I honestly don’t think I’ll ever transfer platforms. WordPress is where it’s at for me.

4. What is one goal you have accomplished this year that you are really proud of?
Finding what I want to do in life. It’s not so much of a goal I had, but I’m really happy that I found my calling this year. I know I want to write for a living, and in learning that, it’s completely changed my outlook on the future.

5. What hair product would you rather not live without?
Leave-in conditioner. My hair has a nice, natural texture to it. I can live without styling it, but I definitely need it to be hydrated so it doesn’t turn into broom bristles.

6. What methods do you use to plan your blog posts?
I take mental notes most of the time. I get an idea and outline it in my head. If it’s a more complicated post that requires research and planning, I free write on my phone just to get my ideas out. Then I paste it as a draft in WordPress, get on my laptop and paste it into a Word document for edit. 90% of the time, I plan and upload posts from my iPhone.

7. What is one beauty trend you’re afraid to try but really want to?
Bright colored hair. I once dyed my platinum blonde hair a non-permanent blue and it stained my hair. I spent countless nights bleaching my hair to get it out, leaving it dry and lifeless. I love the look of ombre’d colored hair and I would kill to have it, but I’m way too apprehensive due to a bad experience.

8. Do you prefer sweet or salty snacks?
It ultimately depends on my mood. Sometimes I have a hankering for chocolate that can only be satisfied by eating four bags of M&Ms. And then other times, I can eat 12 bags of potato chips like it’s nothing. I honestly don’t snack too often, but the type of snack I want is usually reliant on my mood.

9. What is one song you can’t stop listening to at the moment?
I don’t have one specific song as I do one specific artist. I went full 2006 emo kid and listened to My Chemical Romance for a month. Now I’m on a Melanie Martinez kick. I give it a few days until I’m jamming to Cannibal Corpse for weeks.

10. Do you have a favorite magazine and why?
I might be in my 20s, but I’m still a huge fan of Seventeen magazine. They have a lot of nice tips and trends — plus they always have vibrant colors which usually catch my eye. Their articles/stories are also very well written and their magazine is nicely put together.

11. What is one piece of advice you would give a first-time blogger?
Just do it. You might feel silly or like a noob, but the blogging community is extremely supportive of all types of blogs. I thought since I didn’t write about makeup or beauty that there wasn’t going to be a place for me in the blogging world, but the reactions to my posts are just the opposite. I have tons of blogger friends. I honestly have more online friends than I do in real life. Blogging is a commitment, but if you’re truly passionate about it, you will love every second of it. Just put yourself out there and go for it.

Now that you learned a little about me, it’s time for my nominations! Since Rena nominated me, I’ve been constantly thinking of who I want to nominate. There’s this rule about only nominating blogs with “200 followers or less”, but I feel weird about asking someone or creeping on their blog. So I’m going to nominate some of my favorite bloggers that really need some love and recognition.

Mystic Mogwai – I found this girl on Twitter and she’s so incredible. I love her style and her blog name is ingenious. She’s not one specific type of blogger, which is why I love her blog so much. She’s chatty and her blogs are fun to read!

Natural Hazards and More – This girl deserves so much recognition for her ongoing battle of informing the internet world on science. Her blogs are extremely important to the future of the planet.

Ditzy D Blog  – She writes about her self journey through anxiety and depression in such a beautifully honest way. Her blog deserves so much recognition.

The Emma Lifestyle – She’s a lifestyle blogger who writes about everything — from beauty products to book reviews to everyday life. She’s a sweetheart and I really enjoy her blog.

Howling Libraries – I really love book bloggers. Although I’m not currently too much of a reader, I enjoy reading book reviews. She writes really solid reviews, so why not go give her blog a read?

Black Tulip Beauty – And last, but certainly not least, is one of my FAVORITE beauty bloggers out there — mainly because she’s a total babe and I wish I could jack her style. She writes incredible product reviews and also has sunflower yellow hair!? She’s the total package when it comes to beauty bloggers.

Below are the questions for my nominees, if you choose to accept! Have fun!

1. If you could be any animal, which would you be? Why?

2. What is your holy grail beauty product and why?

3. What is the one thing you want most out of life?

4. How do you come up with ideas for blog posts?

5. Who is your biggest role model? Why?

6. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

7. What is your dream job?

8. Do you think you would survive in a zombie apocalypse? Why or why not?

9. What are you most confident about?

10. What’s your favorite movie and why?