I used to be a fan of Lash Blast Volume (orange tube) for everyday wear but quit using it after I noticed the formula got a little thinner. I picked up a tube of Fusion thinking it would be different but was disappointed. Yes it lengthens and thickens, but it smudges worse than any mascara I've ever purchased! I've never used a mascara that immediately found itself in my concealer like this one. After a few days of trying to make it work and having to layer on more under eye coverage, this tube was trashed. It really is a shame because like I said, it makes lashes look great. I think a thicker formula would be a huge improvement.
Primer/ Corrector -BeneFit Cosmetics - The Porefessional
FlyLikeAG6 4/15/2013 8:03:00 PM
I got the GWP size as a part of a Sephora VIB event last summer. This is a decent primer. Foundation goes on smoother and t-zone makeup doesn't slip off during the day. I like how it kind of fills in pores. But I don't see this working through the summer for my combo skin in the humid south. The POREfessional lacks staying power and needs to absorb more oil. Not that I'm looking for a miracle (I know what's realistic!) but I'll keep looking. FWIW, I've never purchased the same primer twice.
Makeup Brushes -Sephora - Pro Airbrush Concealer Brush # 57
FlyLikeAG6 4/8/2013 10:40:00 PM
This is probably my new favorite brush! I love using this to apply a tiny bit of foundation under my eyes as a base for corrector, and to spot blend foundation on my temples and around my ears. I guess my only complaint is that I can't get a full coverage on pimples and blemishes when using the brush with concealer, but for concealing some hyper-pigmentation, this is awesome. At $24.00, this brush is reasonably priced for the quality.
OK, if you can use this tiny little thing for concealer, I applaud you. But most of us look at this tiny thing and think that it is useless. Think again. This is an awesome gel liner/pencil brush! I highly recommend this brush if you want to try a gel liner but don't want to shell out the extra cash for an expensive brush. Unlike some HE gel liner brushes, these brush hairs don't separate and wash beautifully. This is also great for applying a small bit of shadow under the eye or in the corners of the eye. And for $1.00, you just can't beat it.
This is the most expensive brush I own! I love how solid the brush feels in your hand. It is well crafted and the densely packed hairs are strong yet super soft, and just get softer after each washing. At $50.00, this feels like an investment that is going to hold up for years to come. This brush definitely applies blush evenly and is plenty large enough for getting even color on the apple of the cheek. My only complaint is that this brush makes it very easy to spread the color too widely. So I use a either a light hand (light pinks) or just the tip/side of the brush (deep pigments). If you're looking for a precision blush brush or something that works well for contouring, this definitely isn't it. But I love soft blush, I love Bobbi Brown, and I don't regret this purchase.
The first and only Kabuki brush I'll probably ever own! I love the results I get when I use this to apply and blend loose powder. Also great for blending bronzer into the face, and getting rid of liquid foundation streaks. Why would I switch to something else when this does such an awesome job?!
Makeup Brushes -MAC - #187 Duo Fiber Face Brush (Stippling, Skunk Brush)
FlyLikeAG6 4/7/2013 11:10:00 PM
The big, bad 187 brush from MAC! I finally caved after several years and spent the $42.00 to see what all the fuss was about. While you're at the MAC counter you get to hold this lovely, well-crafted brush with luxurious hairs. The MAC artist even applies foundation on you and it looks flawless. "I MUST HAVE THIS BRUSH," you think to yourself. Then you get home and use it for the first time and get stuck picking 10 black hairs off your face!!! I've been using this brush 3-4 times a week for three months and I'm still picking at least three brush hairs off my face after each use. I clean my brushes daily with Sephora's spray cleaner and shampoo them weekly with baby shampoo. So three months = roughly 12 shampooings, and there's still shedding. In fact, this is the only brush that I own that sheds. For comparison, before splurging on the 187, I had the ELF Studio Stipple Brush ($3.00!!!). While the 187 is much denser and applies foundation so much better, the ELF Studio Stipple DOES NOT SHED AT ALL, probably because it is completely synthetic. Something else that irks me is that the white synthetic hairs of the 187 never become white again. You can shampoo it two or three times, it just won't happen. The ELF Studio Stipple washes beautifully and looks unused after being shampooed. I know it isn't a quality brush, but c'mon. If ELF can get a $3.00 brush to come out looking clean, why can't MAC?!? As for foundation application, there's a learning curve for anyone who previously used sponges or a traditional foundation brush for liquid foundations. Just remember that with the 187, a little foundation goes a long way. If you use Studio Fix or ColorStay, only get color on a few tips of the white hairs and start stippling quickly, and work in small areas. Dabbing the brush in product and smearing it on your face is not going to work! I like this brush because it allows me to only use a tiny bit of foundation to get great coverage (which no, the ELF Studio Stipple isn't as great as the MAC 187). Would I repurchase? Probably not. I'd try any other "skunk" brush before going back to this one if it ever got lost. Hopefully the shedding will eventually stop.
Picked up this retractable blush brush a few months ago. I didn't realize it was $26 - I thought it was on clearance for $7 like the retractable foundation brush, but I decided at the register to blow the extra cash. Anyways, I have no idea if the reviews below are for the pink Sephora Collection brush or an older version (I just added that pic of the pink brush), but this is a very, very good brush. I love the angled hairs. They're super soft and feel great on the skin. My brush has had zero shedding. It washes beautifully, immediately returns to shape and dries fairly quick. And unlike other retractable brushes, I think water has a hard time getting into the barrel part. This is a fantastic brush to keep in your makeup bag or purse for everyday use, but I'm still not over the $26 price tag so I'm taking off a lippie. I guess if you have the extra cash it is worth it, but this is not a must have for your collection.
Picked up a small can of this from Sephora for $6 to bring on a trip where I'd be sharing a hotel room with three other girls. Since I take a super long time in the shower, I thought I'd make every one's life easier by skipping a few showers and just splash and dash in the tub. I had never purchased a dry shampoo before and liked this small can. I really liked the smell. The smell lasted a full day after use. I didn't find it overpowering at all. I was kind of freaked out at first when I sprayed a lot this stuff on my roots because it was snow white. But I let it set in for a few moments then used a big comb to run it through my thick, shoulder length hair. Then I'd spray a light amount towards the back of my head, brush everything through, and done. No more oil and fresh smelling hair. I don't really "do" my hair often, but I can definitely see how this product gets bad reviews - it does absolutely nothing to volumize hair. I had to skip washing my hair two nights in a row (I usually skip a night anyways), both nights using this dry shampoo, and my hair was actually the flattest it had ever been. If I had tried to style my hair, it would have been horrible, so that was definitely a ponytail day. Overall, if you're like me and just want to skip a day of washing your hair, this could work, but don't count on any volume being added to your hair. If you're looking for something that will let you go two or more days without washing, forget about this product and find something else. I would not repurchase this stuff, and will be looking into DS brands for my next dry shampoo.
Styling Products -Suave - Professionals Sleek Anti-Frizz Cream
FlyLikeAG6 8/19/2012 8:19:00 PM
You get the best bang for the buck in this product. First off, I should say that I'm not really fond of doing my hair (thick and shoulder length with layers). I really just need something effective yet inexpensive to use after blow drying or flat ironing to keep my hair from frizzing out within a couple of hours. I finally got around to buying this after being impressed by other Suave Professionals products, and I'm impressed with this as well. The smell is nice, it doesn't make my hair oily, it doesn't build up, and it actually adds a bit of shine. If your hair gets oily, remember, a little goes a long way. I wasn't expecting a miracle cream that makes my hair completely unfrizzy all day for under $3, but this product lasts most of the work day. Will repurchase.
The Lip Stain Marker is my go-to product from Avon because I can stock up for myself and give them as gifts to my teenage nieces. The Rose color is one of those "my lips but better" shades. The Heart shade is very melon-like and great for summer. These lip markers are usually on sale. They apply well, dry fast, and last several hours. They also feel very soft after applied and I find the quality overall is better than any DS lip stain. Not giving it 5/5 lippies because it is not an HG product and I only purchase these maybe twice a year when a co-worker comes around with an Avon book, but I would repurchase the Rose shade for the soft, natural look.
Misc Beauty Tools -Cover Girl - Make-up Masters Sponge Wedges
FlyLikeAG6 8/19/2012 6:47:00 PM
I usually only use sponges to blend in concealer on myself, and these CG wedges are the best ones I've found. Unlike other brands that cost more, these wedges are extremely durable and can be washed and reused repeatedly without a loss in quality. These wedges are also very good at applying liquid foundation because they are so dense and don't inhale product. Of course, we all know that dampening a sponge before applying liquid foundation lessens the product absorption into the sponge, and it holds true with this sponge as well - it makes a world of difference to use these sponges damp. I suppose there could be better sponges out there, but why spend the time and effort looking for them and likely paying more when these are available at any DS or supermarket for under $3? Hate CG but want to use all of those CG coupons on something? Get these sponges. I stock up when I get enough coupons together and when any DS has a BOGO sale on CG. Then I'll end up paying between 1/3 - 1/2 price for them. The only reason I'm taking off one lippie is because the packaging kinda sucks. I tear the cardboard back off and keep the sponges in the plastic part, but it would be nice if they were sold in packages bigger than six because I sometimes help out with theatre makeup and we go through a lot of these. So overall, fantastic buy, will continue to repurchase.
Non-nail expert here. I hardly ever purchase nail color because I suck at doing my own nails, and I really don't have an interest in nail care. I get manicures at a salon every two weeks to look professional and usually pick a neutral polish. Two weeks ago I got a mani and this unusual blueish-grayish color caught my eye - Thanks A Windmillion. I had never seen it in any of the other salons and picked it. After my mani was finished and completely dry, the color was absolutely gorgeous! Then the next night I took a shower and then inspected my nails - no knicks of any kind and no tiny flaking of any kind on the edges (this always happens with any nail color even applied professionally with a top coat). Then a week passed and my nails STILL looked perfect. I became convinced that it was because that particular salon doesn't use thinners in their polishes, but then I went to the OPI website and learned about the gel colors. Now, days before I get another mani, my nails only have a couple of chips and the color is still as vibrant as it was on day one. I'm going back to the same salon to get this same color - only because I ordered my own Thanks A Windmillion and it simply hasn't been delivered yet. This has been a great late summer color and I think it will look great for fall too. Yes it is a blueish shade but it still looks professional, and I'm looking forward to using this color repeatedly.
Primer/ Corrector -Urban Decay - De-Slick Oil Control Makeup Setting Spray
FlyLikeAG6 8/19/2012 6:01:00 PM
I hate that something like this expensive UD De-Slick spray is HG for me, but it is. I got my first bottle - the travel size - months ago at Sephora with my VIB points. I fell in love! I spray this 3-4 times after my moisturizer (but before any TM/BB), go on and do your entire face, then spray 3-4 times on finished face. And voila! - no blotting my combo skin for 8 hours, cheap blush that would normally be finished by noon lasts well into the evening, and powder foundation that can last until you need to take it off with no caking at all during the day. And even this summer, in the oppressive hot and humid south where I live, I can use this product and end up only blotting once during the entire day, and the makeup stays put. I definitely understand that this spray probably won't control oil/set makeup all day for someone with oily skin, but even with the reviews I've read, it still made their makeup last 2-3Xs longer. And if you have dry skin, why do you need this product? Get UD's Dew Me or All Nighter spray instead. Overall, I wish I could take a lippie off for the price, but this product is amazing and I do not mind paying $30 a bottle. This beats all the money I've spent experimenting with face primers of all kinds without success. Will repurchase De-Slick spray over and over.
I picked up CG's LineBlast in Eternal Brown a few weeks and I'm very impressed all around. I love the felt pen tip - I'd never even considered using a product with one and that was probably why I've always failed miserably in applying liquid liners with my shaky hands. The felt tip makes it so easy to just shake and apply as thin or thick as you want. The staying power of this CG eyeliner is fabulous. The size of the product is fabulous as well, as there's no long applicator or pencil to try and control. I think the price was pretty fabulous too - I think I paid under $5 for this product. I've always refused to spend good money on any eyeliner because I'm so bad at applying it and wasting product, but this stuff is great for such a low price. The only non-fabulous thing I can say about this eyeliner is that it takes kind of a long time to dry, so be sure to have all of your shadow on and your lashes curled before you apply this or else it may rub off or get stuck and dry in other places. So 1 lippie off for the long dry time, but 4/5 lippies overall. Will repurchase.