*August Product Empties*–Would I Repurchase?

Happy Friday ladies! <3 I hope you’re all having an awesome week and start to your weekend–happy labor day weekend!! Is anyone taking any camping trips or have any fun parties/get together’s going on?! :-)

This month I accumulated quite a few empty products–products I have used up–so I wanted to go ahead and put a blog post together showing you guys what all I have, my thoughts on them, would I recommend them or not, and will I be repurchasing them. <3

SO lets jump right in because I have a lot of stuff!! :-)

 

Product Empty #1: Macadamia Natural Oil Deep Repair Masque $33

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I still love my Aussie 3 minute miracle, however this is an amazing product. It’s a cult-favorite deep hair conditioner on You-Tube and with bloggers for a good reason. Among its many attributes which cause me to love it, is its amazing smell–very tropical and fruity–the creamy/thick consistency that coats and penetrates your hair with very little product, and just how unbelievably soft this makes my hair feel.

When I was using this regularly once or twice a week my hair was definitely showing the benefits, it was softer, more manageable, more hydrated and smelled amazing. This container did last me 6+ months so um yes–I think the $33 dollars for those who say it’s too pricey, is WELL worth it. If you are on more of a budget, they do have a smaller version for $16 in a tube at ULTA that will last you a couple of months as well.

YES I will be repurchasing this, it’s on my list! <3

Product Empty #2: Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara $23

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Yup–I will be repurchasing this–this week actually. This mascara is really unbeatable for me. I love L’Oreal Miss Manga mascara (especially combined with this one for some added length) and I love a couple of other mascaras which I will talk about, but this one…. this one is just unbeatable in terms of making your lashes like a billion times thicker and just gorgeous. It can flake a little, but not anything that is bothersome to me, and when I top this off with the Miss Manga or a waterproof mascara, it’s perfectly awesome.

Product Empty #3: Mally Volumizing Mascara $20

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This is a mascara I have used on and off for YEARS–probably the first time I tried it was about 6 years ago when I ordered off of QVC when I first heard of Mally Beauty. This was the first product I tried from her line, and the love affair is still burning strong. <3

It may look pretty basic, and I never hear anyone talking about it, but it will forever be in my top 3 holy grail mascaras because this gives me the same effect as the Better Than Sex lashes–maybe just a TAD less volume, but it really is amazing. It’s VERY black, and it thickens your lashes amazingly. It lengthens decently well, and doesn’t clump up, at least never has on me.

The only reason I’m not repurchasing right NOW is because I have backups of others to go through still, but in the future I will repurchase it just like I always do, and I HIGHLY recommend it.

Product Empty #4: Maybelline Dream Wonder Powder  $8.99

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This is–for me–the best drugstore powder out there. This is absolutely, without a doubt comparable to high-end powders that sell for WAY more than 3x more. It is SO soft and velvety, it keeps me matte for hours and has amazing coverage. I won’t be repurchasing it right now just because I’m more into translucent setting powders right now–namely my Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder, however I know that whenever I want to be a little more budget-conscious, or I want something with more coverage–this is 100% the powder I go for. I HAVE recommended it to many people and will continue to do so. <3

Product Empty #5: YSL “Babydoll” Mascara $30

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I love/hate this mascara. Would you like to know WHY I love/hate this mascara?! Because it is WONDERFUL–and it’s freakin’ pricey!! And here is the best part… I use this… only on my bottom lashes. WHY WOULD I PAY $30 JUST FOR MY BOTTOM LASHES you ask!?? Because this brush is PERFECT for the lower lashes, the formula is fantastic, but that BRUSH–it’s skinny and very “spiny” so it doesn’t clump my lashes at all and it really coats those babies. I think coating your lower lashes (NOT just your top) is extremely important and can really make or break an eye look (I promise).

So yeah… will I repurchase this spendy little diva? … YUP. I’m not ashamed. 100% worth it. <3

Product Empty #6: Skindinavia “The Makeup Setting Spray”  $29 (EVERYTHING 20% OFF ONSITE FOR LABORDAY)

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FIRST off, like it says above, Dermstore is having a 20% off labor-day sale so if you’ve been wanting this setting spray, GO-GO-GO!

Now for WHY you want this setting spray: I have tried many… many different brands of setting sprays, THIS one is superior in so many ways. It’s so completely gentle, it feels like nothing on your face, however my makeup stays on for DAYS (if I let it), well at least all day, it controls my shine and it is extremely refreshing as well when used throughout the day (although you don’t need to, just nice sometimes when it’s hot out).

I do have a very FULL review on this spray HERE, so I’ll leave it at that–but YES I have already repurchased this because I won’t be without it. <3

Product Empty #7: Olay Regenerist Luminous Tone Perfecting Cream Moisturizer $24.64 (on sale at ULTA.com)

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I had received this product in an Influester box a few months ago and fell in love with it instantly. I hoped and hoped it wouldn’t break me out because it’s texture is SO incredibly velvety and almost serum-like feeling (instantly absorbs though) and it smells SO delicious, so I wasn’t sure how my skin would react to it. Luckily it reacted amazingly with my combination skin and after a couple of weeks of use my face was definitely more evenly toned and brighter looking.

It’s just very hydrating and velvety feeling I love to use this every morning. I will be repurchasing this because I was really bummed when I ran out the other day lol, and I definitely recommend it.

Product Empty #8: Benefit Porefessional Primer  $31

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If you have read even a couple of my posts you’re already going to know the answer to this one–YES I already repurchased it–before I even ran out of this one because oh my gosh I don’t want to go a day without it! :-P Nothing fills in my pores and creates the velvety finish this does for me. I actually only use it on my cheeks, right around my nose and towards my temples because I have huge pores there (darnit) so this last me a long time–I’ve had this container since… christmas I believe… so yeah lasted me 8 months!! <3

All in all, yes I recommend it, it’s a fabulous primer and worth every penny.

Product Empty #9: Philosophy Purity Made Simply Cleanser $23  (My size is the $10 for 3 oz)

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I used to swear by this stuff, I always pre-cleanse to get a lot of my makeup off before I actually wash my face with cleanser, and since I used to love this so much I purchased a little bottle of it when I ran out of my Boscia’s Makeup Break-Up Cool Cleansing Oil cleanser to see if maybe I’d like it better, but I really don’t. I do think this is a great face wash and if you’re looking for something very simple that works and doesn’t have a lot of fragrance, you will love this.

I just really prefer to use a cleansing oil and the Boscia one is still my favorite. I won’t be repurchasing this, however yes I do think it’s nice and would recommend it, it’s just not MY personal favorite have-to-have-it product.

Product Empty #10: St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse Self Tanner $42

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Again, this is a WONDERFUL self tanner, I have used it for several years. However, after discovering my Famous Dave’s Bronzing Mousse, I just don’t use anything else. So yes I recommend it, however I recommend the Famous Dave’s even more because it has a better color, lasts longer, dries faster and has less of a scent. Therefore no I won’t be repurchasing this. <3

 

PHEW, okay guys that’s it for now, I hope you’ve all enjoyed and mostly I hope that this can be helpful to some of you if you’ve been considering any of these products, or if you’re looking for makeup or skin care and aren’t sure what to try. :-)

Love you guys!

God Bless,

kiss

Rachel <3

 

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BRAND NEW “Makeup Geek Vegas Lights Pallet” *Review*

Hellloooo!!!! I feel like it’s been F-O-R-E-V-E-R since I last posted; my best friends wedding was over the weekend in which I was both a bridesmaid and had the pleasure of doing her makeup, and my son started 1st grade on Monday–whew! Things have just been busy, busy for me!! I’m SO glad to finally be sitting down and getting this post done for you guys, I miss blogging SO much if even a few days go by and I can’t write.

I’m SO excited to bring this review to you all today, I pre-ordered this pallet before it launched a couple of days ago on the Makeup Geek website. This is Makeup Geek’s FIRST pallet and Marlena who is the founder of this amazing company said excitedly in her YouTube announcement for this pallet that it has been in the makings for 2 years. She is extremely proud of it and I can tell you right off the bat that Marlena has put her heart and soul into this one.

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Everything from the packaging, to the sweet hand-written thank you note that came in the package, to the incredible quality and stunning colors of this pallet, it is high-end quality and I’m absolutely blown away by it.

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The Vegas Light’s Pallet comes with 6 shades, features 5 new and exclusive eyeshadows, plus their existing Bada Bing eyeshadow.

Eyeshadow Shades Included in the Palette (From the Makeup Geek website)
– Casino – Shimmery saturated metallic gold with orange undertones.
– Sin City – Shimmery Golden Apricot/ Golden Medium Orange.
– Roulette – A rosy, burnt shimmery sienna.
– Mirage – Pale matte beige with yellow undertones and a silky finish.
– Desert Sands – Matte, medium terra-cotta.
– Bada Bing – Deep brown with flecks of gold.

 

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These shadows are SO pigmented and soft, if you like warm, gold/yellow toned colors then you will love this pallet. If you are more into cooler tones, I don’t think this will be for you.

The only shadow I don’t see myself using AS much is Bada Bing, and that’s just preference. It is a fantastically pigmented shadow and smokes out a look with these other colors beautifully, I just don’t care for the glitter in it myself.

I’m blown away at the pigmentation of these, and I think I’m going to really like using them with a little MAC Fix+ to really intensify their vibrancy.

So if you’re already a fan of Makeup Geek eyeshadows and their superior quality, I guarantee you will love adding this pallet to your collection. The packaging is absolutely adorable, well made and the mirror in it is actually really good, no cheap plastic mirror from Marlena! ;-)

I hope you’ve all enjoyed this review and found it helpful, I give it a 10 out of 10 stars and fully recommend it! <3

 

God Bless, 

kiss

Rachel <3

 

 

 

 

L’ORÉAL Visible Lift Blur Foundation *REVIEW*

Happy Wednesday my loves! I hope everyone’s is having a great day and start to their week. :)

Today I am bringing you a review of the new foundation from L’Oreal called “L’Oreal Visible Lift Blur Foundation” , it sells at your local drugstore for $14.99 and comes in 12 different shades. I personally wasn’t sure what to expect from this, so I read up on the website beforehand to see what the product claims were and if I thought it was worth my $15:

“L’Oreal Visible Lift Blur Foundation has an opti-blur technology that is great for all skin types. It is non-comedogenice and contains SPF 18. It provides anti-aging benefits while hiding any imperfections.” –Ulta

That really didn’t give me too much to go on, so I just took the plunge and picked it up to make my own conclusion. The color I picked up is a little darker than I was as I took the swatch pictures, but now that my self-tan is on again it matches pretty well.

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So as you can see it’s a very whipped texture, it reminds me almost exactly of my Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour foundation, only THIS foundation has a more silky feeling when applied. It almost feels like you’re applying a foundation mixed with a serum–so it feels very light and luxurious which I absolutely love.

I get very solid medium coverage with this, but I can easily build it up to full without it getting cakey or heavy feeling.

I prefer to apply it with a dampened beauty blender although it works well with a kabuki brush as well.

The thing I love the most about this foundation is the finish it gives me. It blurs my large pores and my fine lines VERY well, it doesn’t sink into them at all, so it gives me a very soft focus effect. For me this is a demi-matte finish. It’s not totally matte, but I wouldn’t say it’s dewy–just really velvety and luminous looking. It’s really stunning and when set with powder it is even more so.

BEFORE: Literally just woke up...

BEFORE: Literally just woke up...

AFTER: Foundation, a little blush, lip gloss and brows done. You can see it REALLY covers my dark circles.

AFTER: Foundation, a little blush, lip gloss and brows done. You can see it REALLY covers my dark circles.

Pros:

1) Good coverage

2) Beautiful finish

3) Price

4) fairly long-wearing

5) absolutely hides/blurs enlarged pores and fine lines.

 

Cons:

1) I’m not a huge fan of the shade range–it’s pretty much medium-dark shades.

2) I did get a little oily with this foundation–nothing bad, just needed to blot after 3-4-hours of wear.

 

So yes, overall I give this foundation a whopping 9 out of 10 stars. I think if you are like me and have some uneven skin texture, and enlarged pores you are going to love this foundation and it will be worth purchasing for you. I find it very comfortable to wear, and not unlike the performance of my higher-end foundations. I’m very impressed with this and definitely recommend giving it a try!

I love you guys, I will be posting lots of good stuff coming this next week so keep a look-out for that!

God bless,

kiss

Rachel <3

 

And The Winner Is….

Thank you to everyone who participated in the giveaway, I loved hearing from all of you and I wish

EVERY single person that entered  could win this!!! I will be having more giveaway’s soon with even more

exciting prizes, so if you didn’t win this time there will be many more chances!!

So the moment we’ve all been waiting for…

DRUM ROLL PLEASE…

THE WINNER OF THIS GIVEAWAY IS:

Katie from Plus+Beauty

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Congrats Katie and I will be contacting you ASAP to collect your info and get this awesome prize out to you!

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Last Day To Enter My Giveaway!!!

Hey my loves! Just wanted to remind everyone that today is the last day to enter the  “Mia Mariu’s Refreshing Foaming Gel Cleanser” giveaway

If you haven’t entered yet, go ahead and do so here:  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Entering is simple, you just have to be following this blog and leave a comment on the original post (HERE) and then there are additional ways

you can gain entries from which are optional.

Good luck everyone!

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I also wanted to invite you to follow Rachel’s Beauty Bites on my other social media sites:

481px-Twitter_logoTWITTER: 

Pinterest-logoPINTEREST: Visit Rachel Hill’s profile on Pinterest.

images (1) FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/msbeautyguru/timeline

instagram_logo INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/Msbeautyguru7

God bless!

kiss

Rachel <3

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+My Ever Growing “Makeup Geek” Eye Shadow Collection+

Hi my loves! I hope everyone is having a great week so far and is really soaking in that last bit of summer! <3 My family and I are going to our county fair this weekend which will be a ton of fun, and then my girlfriend is getting married the following weekend; I will be doing her makeup and I am SO blessed and flattered beyond words at having been asked to do this for her special day! I will definitely do some sort of post on that, I’m not sure if I want to do a makeup tutorial on the look, or just a general look at her and the wedding with some pictures and all–I’ll figure it out, but definitely going to be doing that! <3

Also before we jump in, just want to remind everyone about the giveaway which is going on right now on my blog, to enter you can go here —-> HERE <—– and win a full-sized bottle of my new favorite facial cleanser of life, Mia Mariu’s Refreshing Foaming Gel Cleanser. Easy to enter, open to US entrants only (sorry :(…) and the contest does end this next Tuesday, August 18th. <3

Alright so lets jump in! So far I have 13 of Makeup Geeks amazing eye-shadows. I pick up a couple of these every single month and they have definitely become my most used eye shadows right along side my MAC shadows. The quality of these shadows is so incredible; soft, buttery, easily blended, pigmented, just absolutely the highest quality.

The compact’s sell for $7.99 and the pan form (which is what I buy) that you can put into a z-pallet sell for only $5.99 a piece; so very affordable for just about anyone.

Don’t let the lighter shades fool you with my crappy swatches, they are my MOST used shades; peach smoothie I use every single day as a transition shade, creme brulee is also a deeper option for a transition shade, frappe–same thing and deeper still. I pretty much want EVERY SINGLE shade so I’ll have to pick up a couple more z-pallets or MAC pallets soon! :-)

Here’s a look at all 13 shades I have in my collection so far:

1) Peach Smoothie

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2) Creme Brulee

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3) Frappe

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4) Mango Tango

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5) Burlesque

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6) Envy

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7) Brown Sugar

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8) Shimma Shimma

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9) Cupcake

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10) Bitten

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11) Preppy

Preppy preppy2

12) Cosmopolitan

Cosmopolitan cosmo2

13) Prom Night

PromNight promnight2

 

Love you guys, have a great rest of your day and I really hope this post was helpful! :-)

God Bless,

kiss

Rachel <3

Mia Mariu’s Refreshing Foaming Gel Cleanser *GIVEAWAY* Contest


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Hey beauties! Today I’m SOOOOOO excited to be given this amazing opportunity to give away a full-sized bottle of the facial cleanser I have been LOVING recently. My last post I did review it which you can go ahead and review HERE, I truly am excited because I know you will absolutely love this and maybe otherwise may not have given it a try!

To enter is simple:

1) Click on the link here below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

2) The only 2 MANDATORY tasks are that you MUST BE FOLLOWING THIS BLOG and LEAVE A COMMENT ON THIS POST. Everything else is optional however will give you more entries meaning more chances to win the giveaway! :)

3) This giveaway is open to US ENTRANTS ONLY (sorry anyone outside of the US :(( …) as this will be shipping directly from Mia Mariu’s and this is what they have chosen to offer.

Here is some info about this amazing facial cleanser:

New and Improved anti-inflammatory formula with 8 natural botanicals!  Aloe, marigold, sea kelp, sea lettuce, plus nourishing essential oils: orange peel, lemon, lime and grapefruit are at the heart of this soft pampering cleanser.  This improved formula has increased levels of Aloe along with the addition of anti-inflammatory Sea Lettuce and essential oils making it an extra gentle cleanser.  Suitable for all skin types, non-irritating, paraben-free, sulfate-free, fragrance-free.

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So that’s everything guys, good luck to everyone and this contest will last one week, starting today and ending on Tuesday August 18th. :-)

Good luck everyone!

kiss

Rachel <3

 

 
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Saturday Standouts 8/9/14

Happy weekend ladies!! I had such a great couple of days, Stephen had a couple of days off work for once and we spent a lot of good time together with Sophia (my daughter). Also my son came home this afternoon from visiting his Dad in Cali the past couple of weeks, so to say I’m EXTREMELY ECSTATIC is even an understatement lol. It was SO GOOD to hug and hold him again! <3

MYBABESL::

I hope you’re all having a great day as you’re reading this, and as ALWAYS I LOVE interacting with all of you so please leave any comments or thoughts or anything you’d like in the comments below! <3

 

Product <3 #1 Mia’s Foaming Gel Cleanser $21

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This is something I was sent and have been EXTREMELY impressed and surprised by because I can’t get enough of it! I did some quick research on this company, and it is an online sales representative corporation much like “Younique” if you’re familiar with that (The 3D fiber lashes) and sells both skin care and makeup products. I’d never heard about it before so I was grateful to be sent the product! I didn’t expect to love it so much to be honest, but I actually look forward to using this to cleanse my face both morning and night.

I have used it twice a day for about a week now. The consistency is a gel that foams up as its deep cleaning your pores, I LOVE the texture of this, it feels very luxurious and soft on the skin, leaves my face feeling clean and refreshed without feeling like it’s been stripped what-so-ever.

The ingredients are just as luxurious with aloe, marigold, sea kelp, sea lettuce, orange peel, lemon, lime and grapefruit extracts being at the heart of this soft pampering cleanser. This formula contains high levels of Aloe, anti-inflammatory ingredients like Sea Lettuce and nourishing essential oils making it an extra gentle cleanser.

It smells delicious–like citrus–and I think for how much I’m loving this cleanser I would be more than happy to pay the $21 to repurchase it, and I look forward to trying more from this line!
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

 

Product <3 #2 MAC Eye Shadow in “Antiqued” & “Brown Script” $10-16

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Sigh… what can I say about these two shades… so brown script is just something that I use 95% of the time in all of my eye looks. I’m obsessed with this for a crease color and my eye is constantly pulled towards it in my pallet of shadows. Antiqued is one I already know I’m going to be reaching for all fall and winter, but this week I’ve been renewing my love for it. It just has the most beautiful burnt copper color that makes my eyes pop and really amps up any look I’m going for.

These two shades are two that I would absolutely recommend especially if you’re really into warmer tones like I am. :-)

Brown script is described as a warm chestnut-brown and is a matte.

Antiqued is described as an ash brown with bronze and is a veluxe pearl.

 

Product <3 #3 Makeup Geek Eye Shadow in “Cupcake” & “Bitten” $5.99

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Every time I pick up a new Makeup Geek shadow I am utterly blown away at the quality of them. I haven’t gotten a dud yet, the texture is very consistent throughout the line, the pigmentation, color choices, and blend-ability is simply on point–the same or better in some cases than my MAC shadows.

I recently picked up a few shades and among them were “cupcake” and “bitten”.

Cupcake is described as a matte medium pink. I didn’t have anything like this in my collection surprisingly and I’m SO in love with it. If you’ve noticed this color and just thought eh–it’s nothing special–no…no it’s definitely something special! Ha ha! This is so soft and feminine looking and it would complement any eye color.

Bitten is described as a matte, deep, maroon red. Again, if you are at all like me and were thinking eh–I’ll pass on this one… DON’T! Go and get it because it is the most luscious, deep, berry/maroon color it makes your eyes pop like no other, and the look of this in the crease and outer v with cupcake all over the lid is to die for!!! :-)

Using CUPCAKE & BITTEN. Lips are Gerard Cosmetic's BUTTER CREAM Gloss

Using CUPCAKE & BITTEN. Lips are Gerard Cosmetic’s BUTTER CREAM Gloss

Product <3 #4 Rimmel London Stay Matte Primer $6.99

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This one cracks me up because a couple of months ago I actually had this on my Makeup I Regret Buying list… well lo and behold I ran out of all my other primers and I needed SOMETHING so I thought what the heck I have it, I’ll use it. Um yeah, I can’t stop using it now. I LOVE this stuff… It really makes my makeup STICK on my face all day, it does keep me matte for hours and helps reduce shine throughout the day, and I love the consistency of it which is like a thick face cream almost. It feels very smooth and soft blended out onto the skin, and I’m really glad I gave this another try because I’m really loving it!

Product <3 #5 Makeup Geek Small Crease Brush $6.99

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This is the first makeup brush I’ve used/purchased from Makeup Geek and once again I am 100% satisfied with this product line. This brush through me for a loop because at first I thought they’d sent me the wrong brush; a pencil brush by mistake, but once I realized that nope–they’d sent me the right one, and tried this out, I am SO glad I got it. I have hooded eyes and sometimes getting that color to really build up in my “crease” can be hard.

This little wonder is somewhere between the perfect amount of stiffness and perfect amount of fluffiness to really get in there, deposit the color, and blend it into that crease beautifully. This is DEFINITELY help you achieve a cut-crease look as well so if you’re looking for something for that then really I think you should get this brush!

The price is outstanding, and now that I’ve tried one of her brushes I know I will definitely be going back for more! <3

Product <3 #6 Makeup Forever HD Foundation (128 Almond) $42

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So I don’t have the FULL bottle of this, which is why there is a stock photo of the bottle and just a picture of the swatch–I have gotten two pretty good-sized samples of this from Sephora now and I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt that at the moment this is my HOLY GRAIL, I LOVE, I NEED, I WANT this foundation. I WILL be purchasing the full size this week or next, and I am SOOOO thrilled with the performance and look this foundation gives me, it is out of this world you guys. I can not believe I’ve never tried this stuff before!

This has a liquidy consistency and reminds me exactly of my Smashbox 12 hour studio wear foundation. I can blend this on easily with either my sigma f80 or with my beauty blender and I can build this up from medium to full coverage without it getting heavy or cakey.

This lasts… and lasts… and lasts you guys, and in photos it looks stunning.

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CAN’T recommend this foundation enough it is hands down my favorite new obsession! <3

 

Alright guys that’s it for this week, I love you all so much and thank you for taking time out of your day to read my blog!

God bless,

kiss

Rachel <3

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Skin Care Obsessions: >>Serums<<

Happy Thursday ladies! Today’s post is all about one of my FAVORITE categories of skin care: serums! I absolutely love that these miracle potions have the power to drastically change and improve different issues in our skin such as texture, clarity, pore size, correct dark spots, diminish fine lines, brighten the skin, drench it in anti-aging antioxidants and even boost our other skin care items we’re already using.

Every skin care line from drugstore to very high-end sells different types of serums to help us combat and target our specific skin care needs. Sometimes these little gems are so packed full of words and ingredients we have NO idea what they even do and we just hurl ourselves into the hands of the Beauty God’s and hope we’re making the right decision in what we’re using.

Today I wanted to both share 6  ingredients in common serums that I believe are important to any woman over the age of 25, as well as what these ingredients benefit, and then also to share with you a few of the serums I both have and have tried that I have seen results and would recommend adding to your skin care regimen if you haven’t already. :-)

6 Ingredients/Serums You Need To Add Into Your Life:

  • Vitamin C–is an antioxidant that slows the rate of free-radical damage — free radicals are unstable molecules that damage collagen and cause skin dryness, fine lines and wrinkles. New research shows that ascorbic acid 2-phosphate, a derivative of vitamin C, not only neutralizes free radicals, but also reverses DNA damage.
  • Hyaluronic Acid–Applied topically, it increases hydration, improves elasticity and also reverses free radical damage, so it may have some benefit in protecting from UV damage. Bonus? Hyaluronic acid is one ingredient that works across the board. Every skin type, even oily, can benefit. Look for hyaluronic acid serums and apply one alone if you have oily skin or under moisturizer if you have dry skin. (source: blog.droz.com)
  • Retinal(NOTE: not for ppl with eczema or rosacia) stimulates collagen production, helps to rebuild and repair elastin fibers, accelerates cell turnover, encouraging dead skin cells to naturally exfoliate more quickly, thus revealing healthy, fresh cells. It is excellent in aiding the repair of sun-damaged skin and provides overall skin revitalization. Retinol minimizes the appearance of large pore and is helpful in the treatment of acne without drying. (source: makeupartistschoice.wordpress.com)
  • Vitamin E
    • Protecting the epidermis from early stages of ultraviolet light damage
    • Increasing the efficacy of active sunscreen ingredients
    • Reducing the formation of free radicals upon skin exposure to UVA rays and other sources of skin stress
    • Preventing the peroxidation of fats, a leading source of cell membrane damage in the body
    • Reducing transepidermal water loss from skin and strengthens the skin’s barrier function
    • Protecting the skin barrier’s oil (lipid) balance during the cleansing process
    • Reducing the severity of sunburn (source: Paula’s Choice)

 

  • Rose Hip Seed Oil–Harvested from the seeds of rose bushes predominately grown in Chile, rose hip seed oil is full of vitamins, antioxidants and essential fatty acids that are known to correct dark spots and hydrate dry, itchy skin, all while reducing scars and fine lines. With beauty benefits like these, we believe rosehip seed oil has the potential to become the next coconut oil. (source: www.HuffingtonPost.com)

 

  • Green Tea Extract–is an excellent anti-inflammatory agent and antioxidant. Green Tea Extract contains polyphenols and antioxidants to reduce redness and irritation, neutralize free radicals and prevent skin damage

 

Alright so now that we’ve covered some basics of the 6 ingredients and what it is they DO for our skin, let me show you some of the products that I have and/or have tried and can personally vouch for both their quality and effectiveness. :-)

 

- EVEN GLOW SERUM – Vitamin C Serum – Antioxidant Treatment  $29.95

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Right now this is my absolute FAVORITE serum, I use this every single morning and the reason I love it so much is not only is it packed full of anioxidants and vitamin c, it also contains Organic Rosehip Oil, Organic Sea Buckthorn Oil, Green Tea Extract, Botanical Hyaluronic Acid, and Resistem (Plant Stem Cells). All ingredients chosen for their ability to enhance Vitamin C efficiency on your skin.

This serum will help to diminish dark spots, hydrate your skin, protect your skin from the environment and sun exposure, boost collagen production, increase radiance and an all over glow, reduce lines and wrinkles and much more.

I have DEFINITELY noticed a difference in my skin since using this and prefer it even over the other vitamin C serums I mentioned in a previous post. This is exclusive to amazon and I will continue to repurchase it when I run out. It smells SO good, like oranges and feels hydrating, cooling and luxurious on the skin.
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Vitamin C Collagen Booster $48

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This serum has won multiple awards, it is truly an antioxidant powerhouse and I have had a couple of these bottles and was BLOWN AWAY at how bright and clear my skin became while using it. The ingredients in this are incredible, including: vitamin c, green tea extract, vitamin E, sodium hyaluronate (binds moisture to the skin and replenishes lost hydration), and aloe.

This is a more spendy option, but this bottle lasted me 4-6 months because you truly only need a little bit. It feels slightly tacky after you apply but that goes away especially when you top it off with your moisturizer.

 

Perricone MD Vitamin C Ester Serum $98

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Alright now we’re really stepping it up in price point… HOWEVER… IF you can manage to work this little baby into your budget I KNOW you won’t regret it. I’ve only ever been able to afford it once, and you better believe I shed a figurative tear when it was gone. This stuff is INCREDIBLE… do me a favor–go into Ulta or Sephora and try this just on your knuckles (where redness is normal in most ppl) and watch in shock and awe as your skin transforms. The redness will immediately be gone and your skin will look hydrated and brightened. That’s just the immediate results–wait until you see what this guy can do after a few weeks of use. Just be warned, if you do go test this–you’re going to want it–and it’s ain’t cheap! But oh–oh so worth it. <3

 

Azure Naturals Ultimate Retinol Anti Wrinkle Serum $23.95

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I’ve been using this retinol serum now for over a month. I noticed an immediate over-night improved clarity in my skin, and now after 5 weeks I am pleased to say that my acne I had been getting from stress has pretty much completely cleared up. Retinal is a HUGE help is improving acne, I actually noticed a difference in using this over using the proactive products I had been using prior. Once I stopped using all of the proactive and added this serum to my nightly routine, within a week my skin was clearing up considerably. This is absolutely my favorite serum for retinol at the moment and it contains 2.5% retinol which is a good dose but not too much where I experienced any skin reactions like dryness, redness, flaking or sensitivities.

If you’re looking for something more main-stream if that’s your thing, the other retinol I recommend is actually a cream, however it’s worth mentioning for you because I have used and LOVED this product and when I have the extra cash to spend on it I don’t hesitate! This product is:

 

Philosophy Help Me $47.50

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 -Retinol: Delivered in a patented microsponge delivery system this purest form of vitamin A encourages skin renewal and helps promote collagen to reduce fine lines, clear congested pores, even skintone, and smooth skin texture.
-Ascorbyl Palmitate (Vitamin C): Provides antioxidant protection against environmental damage.
-Tocopherol Acetate (Vitamin E): Provides antioxidant protection against environmental damage.
-Bisabolol: Derived from chamomile, this natural calming agent soothes irritated skin. (source: Sephora.com)

 

Honestly other than the Valencia Serum I listed first, if I would recommend ONE thing to buy; it’s THIS. My skin was DRAMATICALLY transformed in only 2 weeks of using this every single night. Once I stopped using it my skin started going south again.

This is again on my wish list and as I will be so happy to have it again because it is a miracle worker and I really don’t want to be without it! <3

 

For my hyaluronic acid I’ve been using this serum:

 

Hyaluronic Acid Serum by Foxbrim $16.97

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If you’re looking for a FANTASTIC hyaluronic acid serum, this one is fabulous. It has your hyluronic acid + vitamin E for better absorption, plus vitamin C, so this really is a multitasking skin care power house so if you JUST add this to your routine you will notice a difference in your skin. I have used this myself for 5 weeks now and again the clarity and brightness of my skin is vastly improved as well as my hydration levels which obviously is going to make EVERYTHING look better and help make your skin look and feel more youthful.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

 

So I REALLY hope this post, list and the information has been helpful to those of you that have read it; skin care is pretty much the most important thing since our skin is the largest organ on our body. Plus any makeup you put on your face is going to look a bazillion times better if you’re taking great care of your skin. <3

I love you guys!

God Bless,

kiss

Rachel <3

*July Favorites*

Hey guys, oh my gosh I can’t believe I haven’t posted up a blog post in a week! I’m SO sorry for that, there has been a lot going on in my personal life these past couple weeks which has really slowed down my ability to sit down and write-up a good, quality post. I personally can’t just write-up something and throw it up just for the sake of having something up; so again I’m sorry for my week-long absence but things are settling down towards the end of this week and I should be back to updating the blog 2-3 times a week. :-)

Today I decided to do my July favorites; since I missed last week’s Saturday Standouts and really do have a few amazing things to show you guys I figured I would go ahead and make it my monthly favorites… although this pretty much exactly resembles the Saturday Standouts lol…

OKAY… so these are products I’ve been reaching for pretty much all this last  month, a couple of them are newer and I can’t wait to share them with you! So okay enough of my blabbering hehe, lets get this going! <3

 Product <3 #1: LA Girl Pro Concealer $5 (LEFT: PURE BEIGE, RIGHT: CREAMY BEIGE)

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Okay this product I am SUPER excited about because I had heard some buzz on you-tube that this concealer is somewhat of a dupe or comparable to the MAC Pro Longwear Concealer, which is my FAVORITE concealer of all time and a staple of mine. MAC’s costs $19 and this costs $5… so I kind of HAD to give it a shot and see how it compared.

First off, this comes in a squeezy tube with a brush-tip applicator which is nice because it definitely makes it easy to apply. I don’t know if it’s the most sanitary way to apply your concealer, but I think as long as you clean it off if you use it on any active blemishes you should be alright.

The consistency is definitely not as thick as the pro long wear concealer, it is more liquidy but still very creamy. It has pretty decent coverage actually and I did notice that it held up well and doesn’t fade much throughout the day.

I DON’T think it’s a MAC pro longwear dupe, not even close; howEVER I have been reaching for it every single day and I absolutely love it. I will say though that it oxidizes literally upon immediate contact with air, so I dislike that about it. Just be sure to buy a shade or two lighter than you might normally think you would be and you should be fine. For $5, this is a fabulous concealer and I’m absolutely loving it!

 

Product <3 #2: MAC Eyeshadow in Embark and Vanilla $10-$16

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First off, if you all are still buying MAC eye shadows from a MAC counter and paying $16 a pop–stop it. LOL. You are paying $6 more for the compact version and if you want a cheaper alternative to the Z-pallet, believe it or not MAC’s is cheaper. Its only $8 dollars for the pallet and $2 for the insert. So yeah–definitely buy the pro pallet refills pans over the compacts.

These are two shadows that I picked up because I was looking for my everyday PERFECT, holy grail shades for both my brow bone highlight and for using on my lower lash-line. Embark was recommended by Jaclyn Hill, and Vanilla I did some research and swatch comparisons on and decided to get on my own.

*Embark is described as an intense reddish-brown and is a matte.

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*Vanilla is described as a peachy-ivory with reflects and is a velvet. I actually prefer this a LOT over MAC’s “shroom” because it is not as glittery/shimmery and still gives me that gorgeous highlight I want to brighten up underneath my brows and in the corner of my eyes.

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Product <3 #3: Sigma E15 Flat Definer Brush $14

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In addition to loving the shadow in Embark, this brush is what I use to apply that shadow to my lower lash-line. I absolutely LOVE this brush, it places the color so precisely and closely to the lash-line, applies is very densely and I’ll usually go back with a pencil brush and blend/smoke it out more. I do think that if you’re very into eye makeup you’re going to love this brush, I have even used it to kind of smoke out my eye shadow on my upper lash-line so that I can achieve a beautiful, soft smokey eye.

I think the price point is amazing, it’s completely affordable and well worth adding to your collection. :-)

 

Product <3 #4: MAC Blush in “Cantaloupe” & “Sunbasque” $17-$22

 

CANTALAUPE

CANTALAUPE

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Sunbasque

Sunbasque

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Wow so was this a MAC month for me or what!? Ha ha! These two blushes are probably… no they are definitely two of my favorite blushes in my entire collection. I think they are gorgeous by themselves and also blend well together to create a warm, summery, glowy cheek. If I don’t know what blush to wear, or I just want to KNOW it’s going to look fabulous, I’ll always reach for one of these two.

Cantaloupe is a matte shade and is described as a rich, warm cantaloupe. It pulls a very warm shade of peach on me, looks very natural and blends very seamlessly. I can also say that this blush is one of the softest, smoothest blushes that I’ve had from MAC, its formula is SO well done.

Sunbasque is also a very warm-toned blush which MAC describes as a gilded-peach with pearl. On me this pulls a beautiful shade of terracotta-peach and has the most stunning subtle sheen to it that makes you look very healthy and like you’re glowing from within.

 

Product <3 #5 & #6: Inglot Gel Liner #77  $12 & Sigma E65 Small Angle Brush $14

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So along with it just being extremely hot here, it’s also like I said been an emotional month for me so it probably would have been a disaster with big black panda eyes if I didn’t have this gel liner lol! It’s SO long-lasting and smudge-proof, budge-proof–like immovable people. The finish of this is so intensely black, its matte and looks so stunning. It really lasts until you take it off (I use coconut oil to remove it effortlessly) and a tip: If it seems to be drying out don’t toss it. use a little makeup spatula or even a q-tip and stir up the product and it will be like brand new again.

This eyeliner brush from Sigma I have been dying to tell you all about because for someone like me who pretty much has permanent winged liner–I’ve been searching for a long time for a brush the would both perfect my application, and make it look perfect/on point.

This brush far exceeded my expectations, it is densely packed yet still very soft so it doesn’t scratch or tug or pull on the skin around your eyes. It is angled so creating that perfect winged liner be it dramatic and thick or thin and precise, this brush is incredible.

 

Product <3 #7 & #8: Garnier Skin Renew Miracle Skin Perfector BB Cream $9.99 & Covergirl Ready Set Gorgeous Foundation $8.99

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I haven’t really been wanting to wear my more pricey foundations this past month, with Stephen (my babe) working so much during the summer months, and my son visiting his Dad in Cali for a couple of weeks (part of the reason… or rather most of the reason I’ve been extremely emotional) honestly I haven’t really gotten out more for more than grocery shopping and taking Sophia to the park.

So I’ve been using these two foundations; not necessarily together, but alternating between the two on different days. Both hold up well in the heat, both offer a beautiful natural/satin finish on me, and both give me a real solid medium coverage.

I like to apply these best with my beauty blender since they are more on the liquidy side and I just find it to be the best application for a quick and flawless finish. I like it a lot because with one of these as my base, my LA Girl Concealer and some Makeup Forever Super Matte Loose Powder or my Laura Mercier Translucent Setting powder I am good-to-go at least with my complexion.

If you haven’t tried out one or both of these drugstore gems yet, definitely go pick them up you won’t regret it! OH–and also don’t bother getting any other Garnier BB cream than the one for combo-oily skin… somehow the formula of this one is just superior to the dry-normal one and even though I’m not oily I buy this one. Just a tip! <3 

 

Alright my loves, I hope you truly are all having a great day and the end of your summer is going smoothly. Thank you for all of you who have helped encourage me and keep visiting my blog even though I’ve been having a rough month–things will definitely be better now! I’m so glad to get this post up, it uplifts my spirits and helps me to remember why I love doing this so much!

God bless you guys,

kiss

Rachel <3

Deuteronomy 31:6

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