REVIEW: Bobbi Brown Luminous Moisturizing Foundation

Lately, I’ve been obsessed with Bobbi Brown products. I’ve glossed over her line before but never took the time to really learn about any of her products. When I was younger, I thought the line was boring and “old lady,” lol. Of course, when I was younger, I didn’t know what I was doing or what quality truly meant either!

Let me introduce to you the Bobbi Brown Luminous Moisturizing Foundation. Previously, I wrote about the Extra Repair Foundation – which is great for fall and winter months. I thought that this foundation would fall into that category because of its moisturizing properties. However, it doesn’t make me greasey and I love the finish.

This is a great, all-around, everyday foundation. I say this because it’s easy to apply, very low-maintenance, and performs to the same level every time I apply it. It’s very fuss-free, which for me, means that I can apply it everyday without having to worry about which brush to use, whether it’s going to wear off during the day, or how many times I’m going to need to blot.

The glass packaging is cute and compact, but the foundation doesn’t come with a pump. I would say that THIS is my biggest gripe. It just makes everything overall messy – I hate pouring it out onto the back of my hand, because most of the time, I pour too much out. Another gripe with the packaging is that the opening gets gunky because foundation will collect and dry around the opening. Bleh.

Bobbi Brown’s Luminous Moisturizing Foundation is described as a “super-moisturizing formula [that] gives skin a soft, healthy, even-toned glow as it helps reverse the visible signs of aging.” It claims to be “formulated with a natural collagen boosting, skin firming blend of Hexapeptides and Milk Thistle Extract.”

The main purpose of this formula is to “soften fine lines and imperfections” to make “Skin look and feel refreshed, renewed and beautifully luminous.” The scent reminds me of gentle herbs – it smells good, natural; not in a floral, laundry kind of way though (thank goodness). The smell is kind of lavender-ish, I think. It’s very pleasant and I have no complaints about it.

My Bobbi Brown shade is Sand (2). Like I’ve mentioned before, Bobbi Brown provides a wide range of shades. Her philosophy is to create yellow/golden-toned foundations, so this is a great line for Asian skin tones, those with really pale skin tones, and those with darker skin tones. She provides a great range of in between colors as well. Generally, the warmth of her formulations blends well into the skin and I believe the yellow tones help counteract the redness even better.

Coverage is roughly medium – however, it can be sheered out (using a bueaty blender) or buildable when packed onto problem areas (using a synthetic buffing brush). Overall, I like the customizable coverage because we can’t always have “good skin days.” Wear time is good for a moisturizing foundation but it isn’t the longest lasting – although it doesn’t claim to be. It’s very soothing and gentle on the skin; and I like to use this when my skin is irritated and not being responsive towards products.

I recommend this over the Extra Repair Foundation and prefer to use this on days when I’m in the mood for a liquid foundation and not a BB cream or tinted moisturizer. Although oil does break through halfway through the day, I just blot and move on and it doesn’t bother me. The finish is luminous but not shiny or overly dewy, which I like because sometimes I feel that dewy formulas can be mistaken for oiliness.

I don’t tend to powder, but if I feel like it, I dust some on over my t-zone. For those having difficulties with color matching for foundations, give Bobbi’s line a try and ask for a sample.

Made in Canada.
1 fl. oz.
Retails for $46.00

*Quotes extracted from http://www.bobbibrowncosmetics.com

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Too Faced La Crème – “Naked Dolly”

It seems that all brands and companies across the board are coming out with the hybrid-style lipstick: pigmented color, yet moisturizing formula that doesn’t compromise the comfort of your lips. Because everyone is jumping on the band wagon, it’s gotten increasingly difficult to pick a “favorite.”

For me, however, Chanel’s Rouge Coco Shine will always reign supreme. I don’t mind experimenting and reporting back though. :)

Too Faced came out with new lipsticks luxuriously named La Crème. It is described as “a rich and creamy lip color infused with moisturizing and strengthening benefits.” With 16 available shades, it’s kind of nice to have a wide color range to play with.

The formula is amazing. Very moisturizing and keeps your lips looking smooth and even. I also noticed that even after the color has worn off, the moisturized feeling is still left behind. I like it and it feels nice on the lips so no complaints there.

Sephora claims that La Crème will “indulge lips with luxurious color and super moisturizers including white lotus flower and power peptides.” This lipstick range “comes in abundant shades in four essential color ranges: nudes, spices, pinks, and reds.”

The color range in the categories listed above is nice because I think different skin tones can find flattering lip colors this way. If you’ve noticed, nudes, reds, pinks, and everything in between comes with different undertones. This is a deal breaker if it doesn’t compliment your skin tone.

My favorite nude may not work with your skin tone. Also, I’ve noticed that your natural lip color will play a role in how the color of the lipstick will look you.

My shade here today is “Naked Dolly,” which is loosely described as a “satin pink.” It’s a nudey-pink with very little beige undertones. This is good for fair to light skin tones and will work for those with golden and neutral undertones. I don’t think it will be very safe for those with pinker or olive undertones.

The shade is quite pale and applying too much will makeup your lips look scale-y and dry even when it’s not. My gripe with the formula is that it’s TOO moisturizing – in fact, it’s slippery on your lips and will get everywhere – your coffee cup, in your hair when the wind blows, your boyfriend, etc.

The color is pretty swatched on my arm but didn’t do much for me on my lips. It just blended in and looked like I slightly muted my lips. The waxy feel leaves a weird taste in my mouth sometimes but it’s not the end of the world for me. It’s buttery smooth and good, safe color. For me, it’s nothing special because I own tons of shades like this. The formula reminds me of Revlon’s Lip Butters.

What do you guys think? Yay or nay? For me, nay.

Ingredients:
Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Sterols, Vegetable Oil, Polybutene, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Diisostearyl Malate, Polyethylene, C12-15 Alkyl Lactate, Isostearyl Hydroxystearate, Triisostearyl Citrate, Trimethylolpropane Triisostearate, Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax (Candelilla Cera/Cire De Candelilla),Isostearyl Isostearate, Tridecyl Trimellitate, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Flavor (Aroma), Limonene, Benzyl Benzoate, Citral, Linalool, Geraniol, Hydrogenated Polycyclopentadiene, Nelumbo Nucifera Flower Extract, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Tribehenin, Sorbitan Isostearate, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Phenoxyethanol, Mica. May Contain/Peut Contenir (+/-): Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Red 6 (CI 15850), Red 7 Lake (CI 15850), Red 30 Lake (CI 73360), Yellow 5 Lake (CI 19140).

0.11 oz
$21.00 per tube

Quotes extracted from http://www.sephora.com

REVIEW: Revlon ColorStay 16-hour Eye Shadow “555 Moonlit Clair de lune”

I’ve been experimenting with various drugstore options for awhile and avoided the shadows until now. My expectations for shadows are high because of my experiences with high-end products. However, this is not to say that there are no drugstore alternatives available.

Revlon is my favorite drugstore brand and I’ve been impressed with their ColorStay range for quite some time. Recently, at Ulta, there was a promotion going on – buy 2 get 1 free – and, of course, I jumped on it before it was too late!

I chose the Revlon ColorStay 16-hour Eye Shadow in “555 Moonlit Clair de lune.” Again, it’s a rather safe quad considering I’m a fan of neutrals. For me, I wasn’t too concerned about the color choice; I was looking for quality of texture and formulation. Claiming to last up to 16 hours is quite steep, but I was also curious about its true lasting power as well.

On a everyday basis, I skip eye primer and move onto the eyeshadow. I don’t particularly have oily lids and I haven’t really experienced any of my shadows wearing off halfway through the day. Creasing has never been an issue for me; I’ve personally always had issues with EYELINERS smudging more than anything else.

The Revlon ColorStay 16-hour Eye Shadow in “555 Moonlit Clair de lune” is a safe option, but comes with easy-to-work-with shades that can suit anyone for any occasion. The 4 colors vary in texture (semi-matte, frosty, etc.) and the level of pigment intensity varies as well.

As far as I know, I did not experience any fallout with this quad; it is easy to use and carry around; and, if in a pinch or traveling, this is a handy quad to pack without risking your more valuable products.

The back of the packaging resembles many Japanese drugstore eyeshadows. The picture example on the back is helpful but shouldn’t limit your creativity. The consistency of the product is not soft, nor do they feel finely milled. It blends okay only if you have a trusty blending brush on standby.

Pigmentation is just okay. It takes many swipes to get the appropriate amount of color deposited onto your lids. The lighter colors don’t show up that great, but the dark brown shade performs well. Up close, the colors are pretty and they do work well together.

The white, frosty shade is nice for the inner corner of your eyes. It really does brighten up your look and helps you look more awake. Personally, I wouldn’t use this as a brow highlight because it’s quite glittery and frosty. The medium brown-taupe shade is nice as an all over shade. It’s hard to get this color to pack on with a brush, so I just use the sponge-tipped applicator.

The pale champagne color is my least favorite color since it doesn’t really show up on my lids. It looks like something in the pan, but once swatched, it’s quite disappointing. You can detect a faint hint of shimmer but the color itself is nearly non-existent and pale. I like it for all over the lid when I’m not feeling motivated or inspired to apply eye makeup. It looks nice paired with eyeliner. The dark brown color has excellent pigmentation and is great for crease work or lining along your lashes. It’s a bit difficult to blend, but like I said, a trusty blending brush – like a MAC 217 – will get the job done, so no worries.

Here is the quad applied lightly onto my lids. I skipped the frosty white color since I was heading to a meeting and didn’t want to attract unwanted attention, lol. As you can see, everything is subtle but the colors are definitely buildable. As for lasting power, I can’t say that it lasted exactly 16 hours since I remove my makeup (all of it) before the 16-hour mark. However, without primer and in the heat and humidity, it didn’t run, smudge, or fade on me.

I would give this quad a C+ overall. I have plenty of other colors that I would reach for over this quad, but I like the quad for its convenience and portability. Perhaps it would be something good to have in your makeup bag in your desk drawer for touch ups as well.

What are your thoughts?

Top Neutral Eyeshadows to Own

Because of my love for neutral eyeshadows, I often get asked which ones are my absolute favorite. It’s a really difficult decision to make – it’s kind of like asking someone which child of theirs is the favorite, lol. I own tons and tons of neutral toned eyeshadows, so the ones that have made the cut are dearly special to me.

I chose 8 which I know is kind of an weird number – choosing 5 was not going to happen; and I really couldn’t find 2 additional eyeshadwos to make the final cut. So, with all honesty, I chose 8 that I would highly recommend. As you can see, the brands range from all across the board; and, keep in mind that these are all single eyeshadows and no palettes (since we all know that’s a totally different story).

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I like each for different reasons – whether it be for the application, formulation, texture, and of course, the color itself. They all serve a different purpose, but on most occasions, I mix alot of these colors together. Also, please note that there are various shades of browns and its corresponding undertones. Because I’m fair-skinned with golden undertones, I tend to not veer towards colors that are reddish, orangeish, or muddy in any way.

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I also admit, that outside of these 8 colors, I really don’t need any other neutral colors. However, since I not-so-secretly seem to want to hoard makeup, I can’t really take my own advice! However, I justify my neutral eyeshadow purchases by telling myself that they’re practical, useful, work-friendly, school-friendly, family-friendly, and going-out-friendly too.

Thus, because these colors are so multi-functional – it’s okay, right?

1. Burberry “Pale Barley”
2. MAC “Soba”
3. MAC “Charcoal Brown”
4. NARS “Voyage”
5. Bobbi Brown “Heather”
6. Bare Minerals “Nude Beach”
7. NYX “Taupe”
8. Laura Mercier “Bamboo”

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I’m happy with my choices and would re-purchase them in a heartbeat if and when I run out/hit pan, lol. I have other shades that also need attention and love, so I try to rotate my eyeshadows when I can. However, when I’m in a pinch or I’m feeling uninspired and need something fast, I turn to these shades because they’re my favorite. What are your favorite neutral eyeshadows? Do they each serve a different purpose? Do you prefer colors?

Summer Favorites

Hopefully it’s not too late to write a post about my current favorite summer products, but I figured I’d give it a go anyway. Here, in Texas, August and September are intensely hot and humid so I thought there would be others out there who can benefit from this post! But believe me – I’m anxious for fall.

Summer time – to me – means less effort. It also means simplifying and being a minimalist, so it’s a good time to really get into the natural look without overdoing it. I like the light, easy look of summer because it can be so beautiful – light, tossed and glossy hair; jeans shorts and a tank top; bright nails; and, easy and effortless looking makeup – lashes, fun lip colors, and the statement blush.

I’m featuring: Shiseido Sun Protection Compact Foundation, L’oreal Voluminous Full Definition mascara, Essie nail polish in “Blanc,” and Benefit boxed blush in “Dandelion.”

Here’s my current summer time favorites. I know that the stash is quite modest, but I feel the stash embodies what I just stated above. It’s fun, quick, and easy to do. And, when it’s hot outside, I don’t want to put so much effort into meticulously making myself look like I planned the whole look. Please check the previous post for a more in-depth review on the Sun Protection Compact Foundation by Shiseido (shade SP20).

I have always passed up Benefit’s boxed blushes because it didn’t seem like anything special. I stumbled across it at Sephora while casually browsing (as usual) and gave it a curious swatch. On a whim, I bought it, fell in love with it, and couldn’t believe this whole time I was without this staple item.

I like that Benefit re-did the packaging so the lid is attached. I’m not that thrilled about the cardboard box, but it’s sturdy and cute and the product is still good. To me, the price is a bit high for something housed in paper; I would feel better paying $28 if it were in fancier packaging (in my opinion).

The pink shade is really lightly pigmented. It’s also very powdery as you can see from the photos. The “soft pink” shade, according to Sephora, is “Benefit’s ballerina-pink pressed highlighting powder.” It’s designed to achieve the “fake awake” look with its “shimmery, satiny, radiant, perk-me-up finish.” The product “takes your complexion from dull to radiant in an instant,” and I would most definitely agree with its claims.

The color is very faint but layers easily and is very blendable. It’s a light, soft pink that is natural and has a subtle brightening effect – which is strange since it’s not glittery or a bright color. The muted pink creates a good flush in a healthy way, and doesn’t come across as a “baby doll” kind of color (much to my relief).

More views of the brush here. I don’t use this and use a regular blush brush instead. To me, the brush is a bit stratchy and is too thin. I’m afraid that the color will apply in a thin streak if applied with this. However, if in a pinch, I suppose you could turn this brush on its side and apply the blush in a “wider” fashion.

Essie polish in “Blanc” is the most perfect white nail polish. There’s no shimmer or glimmer; it’s just a good ol’ sold white that applies smooth and opaque after two coats. It isn’t streaky and sheer like some white polishes can be. It looks so pretty on the fingers and toes in the summer.

I’ve been trying the L’oreal Voluminous Full Definition mascara after hearing MakeupByTiffanyD talk about it on YouTube. I love the formula for layering and am very happy with it. It doesn’t smudge and it isn’t too wet or dry – it’s just right. It also separates the lashes perfectly, which is great since it creates the illusion of having more lashes!

Here’s a quick face shot so you can get an idea of what all this looks like. My favorite out of all the products is the Shiseido Sun Protection Compact Foundation in shade SP20. The coverage is amazing and its ability to withstand heat, sweat, humidity, and oil is amazing.

It’s highly resistant against all the elements, which makes it ideal for summer time wear. The finely-milled powder offers optimal coverage while feeling light. Despite the super long-wear capabilities and built in sun protection, it’s light and doesn’t feel/look cakey. However, I suggest removing this with cleansing oil at the end of the day just in case.

What are you current summer favorites? Do you change your makeup routine seasonally?

*Quotes extracted from http://www.sephora.com

Summer Foundation Routine – SHISEIDO Sun Protection Compact Foundation SPF 34 PA+++

Summer is in full heat here in Texas and it’s allowed me to explore some new options for makeup. Normally, I’m a liquid-foundation-kinda-girl because powder foundation tends to get/look/feel cakey throughout the day. Sometimes I opt for mineral foundation (like the Laura Mercier), but in the summer months, it tends to make me more oilier than usual.

Recently, I decided to purchase and try out the Shiseido Sun Protection Compact Foundation SPF 34. I figured since I liked their regular suncare line anyway, the suncare-makeup line should be just as good.

I did my homework online and looked up reviews for both the liquid and compact foundation in this range, and decided that for right now, the powder foundation would be my choice since I was trying to avoid anything heavy and liquid on my face during the sweaty and humid months.

As with all Shiseido compact products, the refill and compact is to be purchased separately. I suppose this is more earth-friendly, but I do find it a tad bit inconvenient. I also read online that the compacts tends to break before the actual product runs out. I was told by the sales associate at the Shiseido counter that if the compact breaks to just bring it back to the counter for a replacement.

Sephora’s website describes this foundation as “a powdery foundation that resists perspiration and oil to remain fresh and color-true for hours.” It’s designed to be a “convenient solution” that “unites optimal sun protection with skin-caring makeup, in a single travel-perfect compact.” This foundation “minimize[s] imperfections [to] achieve a flawless, matte finish as you defend your skin against damaging UVA/UVB rays.”

“It smoothes on with a lightweight feeling and a natural, subtle look. It is recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation as an effective UV sunscreen.”

First of all, let’s talk about the packaging. It’s cute and bright colored, which is appropriate for anything catered towards “summer time.” Also, I like that the sponge is housed in a separate compartment so the powder foundation itself doesn’t get ruined. The flip-top compact has mirror included. The sponge is thick and durable; not thin and cheapy feeling.

Second, let’s talk about the claims. I agree that the prodcut “resists perspiration” and remains “color-true” all day. In fact, this product is truly the longest-wearing foundation I have ever owned. Upon application in the morning, it’s very matte and flat. However, after settling in on the face, it gets better and better. I can wear this for up to 10 hours without having to blot – and, this includes being out and about and sweating.

The powder smells like Shiseido’s suncare line. I personally still wear sunscreen under this powder foundation to double-up on protection since I reserve this product specficially for summer time and being outside. It’s quite impressive for a powder foundation and you don’t have to worry about your makeup melting, getting blotchy, or running off your face due to the heat.

The color match for this foundation is tricky because it ALL looks dark in the pan. Upon first glance, I would’ve assumed they were bronzers. It appears the color choices don’t suit darker skin tones, which is such a shame. I wear this powder foundation in SP20 which is the second to lightest color. SP10 was a reddish pink color and even though SP20 looked a bit dark, it swatches nearly invisible and blends in extremely well.

Also, the coverage for this foundation is amazing. Who would’ve thought a powder foundation could be so reliable with coverage? I can skip concealer most of the time, unless I’m having a “bad skin day.” And, even then, the redness from bumps and pimples is covered.

I apply this with the sponge provided. I normally steer clear of sponges, but I like this sponge and it seems to deposit the product perfectly onto my skin. I just do 2 swipes and pat it onto different portions of my face. It’s not cakey or powdery-looking at all. The directions for the product indidcates that it “can be applied with a dry or moistened sponge, for flexible coverage,” but I don’t really feel the need to use the product wet.

0.42 oz.
Made in USA
Container made in Japan

Active ingredient: Thiotaurineprovides antioxidant protection against free radicals.

$27.00 for refill
$8 for compact