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Sephora Favorites 2014

Hello beauties, how are you all? OK…we have a lot to get through today so I’m gonna jump right in!

This time of year is especially exciting for cosmetics lovers with stores and brands releasing value packs and great deals. See my Tarte Bon Voyage Set review HERE

What I really look forward to each year however, is Sephora’s Favorites sets. They’re like a sampler box of all the amazing products and brands that have become cult favorites and we get to try many different products at a fraction of the cost. In fact, I’ve come to love many of my all time favorite products as a result of these sampler boxes.

Sephora has definitely done it again with a great array of Favorites. I only listed a handful from each category but you can check out the full range of Sephora Favorites including smaller size sets, perfume and mens range HERE
 

SUPERSTARS

$75 – Get it HERE

Featuring 12 of the most popular products from makeup to skincare, perfume to nails, this set has it all! Including a full size Anastasia Brow Wiz pencil, Urban Decay Sin eyeshadow,  a gorgeous red nail polish from Formula X and a NARS Orgasm blush, these products alone are enough to justify this pack.

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Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Dark Brown / Benefit Cosmetics POREfessional / Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real Mascara In Jet Black / Bumble And Bumble Surf Spray / Chloè by Chloè Rollerball / Formula X Nail Color in Ignite / Fresh Sugar Rosè Tinted Lip Treatment / Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil / Nars Cosmetics Blush in Orgasm / Smashbox Cosmetics Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 35 in Light / Stila Cosmetics Stay All Day® Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner In Intense Black / Urban Decay Eye shadow in Sin

LIPS

Give Me More Lip Pack – $59 – Get it HERE

With a whopping 17 products, this has to be my favorite set seeing as I love lip products so much. They’ve included so many gorgeous shades which would look great on all skin tones so you can confidently purchase this set and enjoy the vast array of colors and formulas within. They even put a Too Faced Melted lipstick, an OCC Lip Tar and Hourglass gloss in there. Yep…me=kid…this box=candy store!

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bareMinerals Marvelous Moxie™ Lipstick in Speak Your Mind (bubble gum pink) / Benefit Cosmetics Hydrating Tinted Lip Balm in Posie / Bite Beauty Luminous Crème Lipstick in Palomino (vibrant magenta) / Buxom Mini Full Bodied lipstick in Menace / Fresh Sugar Berry Tinted Lip Treatment / Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick in Icon / Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Outlaw / Laura Mercier Lip Glacé in Blush (medium rose brown) / Laura Mercier Crème Smooth Lip Colour in Red Armour / MAKE UP FOR EVER Waterproof Lip Liner Pencil / Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Black Dahlia Lip Tar: Matte Test Tube / Sephora Collection Rouge Infusion in 10 Red Essence / Stila Stay All Day® Vinyl Lip Gloss in Nude Vinyl (medium pink nude) / Tarte LipSurgence Lip Tint in Moody / Tarte LipSurgence Power Pigment in Flush / Too Faced Cosmetics La Creme Color Drenched Lip Cream in Naked Dolly / Too Faced Cosmetics Melted Liquefied Long Wear Lipstick in Fuchsia

 

MASCARA

Lashtash Pack – $45 – Get it HERE

Use code: GIFTSHIP to get free shipping on this product through til Nov 18th

So you want to try a new mascara but don’t know where to begin? Lashtash set features some of the most talked about mascaras and they threw in an eye makeup remover which happens to be my personal favorite. I use waterproof mascara and this Sephora eye makeup remover melts the product right off my lashes…no tugging, no scrubbing which is usually the downside to wearing waterproof mascaras.

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Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real Mascara In Jet Black / Buxom® Lash Mascara In Blackest Black / Clinique Dual Ended High Impact Mascara And Lash Primer / Josie Maran Argan Black Oil Mascara / Kat Von D Immortal Lash 24HR Mascara / Lancôme Paris Hypnôse Drama Mascara / Sephora Collection Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover / Sephora Collection Outrageous Curl Dramatic Volume And Curl Mascara / Smashbox Full Exposure Mascara In Jet Black / Urban Decay Perversion Mascara / YSL Mascara Volume Effect Faux Baby Doll

 

SKINCARE

Skin Wonderland Set – $56 – Get it HERE

Skincare is very personal, it’s definitely a time consuming process to test out products and see if they work with our skin type. Considering how expensive skincare products can be, a set like this is well worth it to try out new alternatives and maybe even find that one product that can transform our skin. This pack features cult favorites from amazing brands…

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Shiseido Benefiance WrinkleResist24 Pure Retinol Express Smoothing Eye Mask Sheet / Kate Somerville ExfoliKate® Intensive Exfoliating Treatment / Nude Skincare ProGenius™ Treatment Oil / Amorepacific Treatment Enzyme Peel / L’Occitane Cleansing And Softening Shower Oil With Almond Oil / Caudalie Hand And Nail Cream / Josie Maran Argan Infinity Cream Intensive Creamy Oil / Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist / Clarins Tonic Body Treatment Oil / Lavanila Laboratories The Healthy Deodorant in Pure Vanilla / Ole Henriksen Lemon Strip Flash Peel

 

GLAM

Beauty Closet Pack – $99 – Get it HERE

If all you want out of a favorites pack is to have everything you could ever need to achieve a flawless, glam look, this set is for you! Treatment oils, face primers, eyeliner, mascara, bronzer, perfume, nails and lip color…they even included a micro mini beauty blender! Packing for travel will be an absolute breeze with this pack.

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Algenist Complete Eye Renewal Balm; Anastasia Beverly Hills Mini Clear Brow Gel / Full-size Ardency Inn MODSTER Smooth Ride Supercharged eyeliner in Gold / bareMinerals Mini READY™ Touch Up Veil Broad Spectrum SPF 15 in Translucent / Beautyblender micro.mini sponge applicator / Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector™ in Opal / Bite Beauty BB for Lips in Flush / Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black eau de parfum rollerball / Full-size Formula X Nail Color in Fahrenheit / Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer / Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil / Julep Freedom™ Polymer Top Coat / Lancôme Paris Lip Lover in 355 Framboise Etoile / Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20 in Nude / Living Proof Prime Style Extender / Ole Henriksen truth serum collagen booster / SEPHORA COLLECTION Colorful Mono eye shadow in #32 Pop Idol / Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 35 in Light/Medium / Stila Convertible Color in Peony / Tarte Amazonian clay waterproof bronzer in Park Ave Princess / Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara

 

Again, there are so many more sets to choose from so you can check out the full Sephora Favorites range HERE

 

What do you guys think of these sets? Any favorites or Have you purchased any? xx

 
 

Product Series: Concealers

As self explanatory as the name “concealer” may be, concealers are also a product that a lot of people get confused about. In today’s Product Series, we’ll look at different concealer formulas, what they do, tips and tricks to achieve the best results and of course some of my personal (and industry) favorite brands.

If you have specific skin issues such as major pigmentation, dark circles or discoloration, make sure to check out my post on Color Correctors HERE
 
Concealers
 

WHAT ARE CONCEALERS

In a nut shell, concealers are a more concentrated, pigmented version of foundations designed to provide coverage in areas where there are scars, marks, pigmentation or to brighten areas that may need a boost of light (mainly the under eye area and higher points of the face). I have an in-depth post on how concealers are used to highlight the face and features which you can check out HERE

THE MOST COMMON CONCEALER PROBLEM: What color to go for?

Most people think concealers should be 1-2 shades lighter than the skin tone. Although this is true when concealers are used for “highlighting and brightening” purposes, it doesn’t really go down too well when covering blemishes, acne and pimples. A pimple/acne is usually raised, so it’s already highlighted against the skin. When we use a concealer lighter than our skin tone for the purpose of covering it, we’re actually doing exactly the opposite…we’re highlighting it further – not to mention any dry skin on or around it.

Lucky for you guys (not so much for me), I’m sporting couple of nice little numbers on my cheek so I can demonstrate exactly what I mean in pictures :)  Although no product will help flatten a raised blemish, the color makes a huge difference in making it as invisible as possible.

On the very left is my bare face. Middle is where I’ve used a lighter shade of concealer and as you can see, it practically grabbed onto any dry skin on the blemish and obviously didn’t blend in with my skin color either, highlighting the problem area further. On the very right is my Maybelline Fit Me concealer in the same shade as my skin tone/foundation:

*I didn’t use any foundation or setting powder in the pictures, so once these products go on top, the blemishes will be even less visible.

In summary, if you need a concealer to cover blemishes, acne and pimples, it’s best to go for a color that is the same as your skin or foundation tone. If you need a concealer for brightening/highlighting purposes, it’s better to go for 1-2 shades lighter than your skin tone or foundation. For both purposes, it’s best to have 2 different shades of concealers to achieve the most flawless results.
 

TYPES OF CONCEALERS

Liquid concealers: are most commonly used and they provide light to medium coverage – although most are buildable to a full coverage. They usually come in squeezable or lip gloss type of tubes with either a sponge or brush applicator.

Cream concealers: usually offer the heaviest coverage as they are much thicker in consistency. Cream concealers come in little pots or pressed pans, and occasionally in a stick/chubby pencil form. We tend to use cream concealers more for pro work in the studio or for covering tattoos or deep scars and pigmentation.

 

TRIED and TESTED FAVORITES

The products I’ve listed below are possibly the best in their categories and I’ve been using them in rotation for years now. The long wearing formulas are my favorite as they’re so easy to work with. They set quickly (most of the time they don’t even need extra setting powder on top) and they don’t crease. I love the others just as much, though I only use the heavy coverage formulas for specific jobs as mentioned above.

Click on the product pictures below to be taken to the stores; except DS=Drugstore

Regular Concealers

 

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MAC Select Cover-Up Concealer / Giorgio Armani Concealer / Maybelline Fit Me Concealer (DS) / Maybelline Age Rewind Concealer (DS)

 

Colorstay / LongWear Concealers

 

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MAC Pro Longwear Concealer / NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer / Revlon Colorstay Range Concealers (DS) / Maybelline Super Stay Concealer (DS)

 

Heavy Coverage Concealers

 

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MAC Studio Finish Concealer / Kat Von D Lock It Tattoo Concealer / Hard Candy Glamoflage (DS) / Dermablend Professional Cover Creme (DS)

 

Tools for Application

Using fingers are a great everyday way of applying concealers as the warmth of the skin helps melt the product and blend it in. However, the brushes/brush sets below, as well as the Beauty Blenders are my go-to concealer tools when it comes to achieving the most flawless finish.

For under eyes and highlighting, fluffy blending brushes and the beauty blenders (especially the new micro mini size for smaller areas) work best.  A fine tip brush such as the Sigma E11 below is perfect for precise coverage of blemishes/pimples but any fine tip brush (even from art shops) is good for this.

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Real Techniques Starter Kit (DS) / Sigma Precision Kit (also available individually) / Sigma E11 brush / Beauty Blender / Beauty Blender Micro Minis

 

CONCEALER TIPS AND TRICKS

* For concealing darkness, pigmentation and blemishes, I find it best to apply the concealer first, followed by foundation and powder to further conceal the problem areas. For highlighting purposes, you can apply the foundation first and then the concealer and powder which help emphasise the highlighted areas.

* When covering blemishes or under eyes, work in thin layers and build up the product as needed, rather than a thick layer. Most of the creasing problems occur because of the amount of product applied. Take your time and blend each layer really well, allowing the product to settle into the skin for a few minutes before moving onto the next layer.

* Try to go for a light setting powder – even a translucent one when setting concealers. This will help eliminate product build up and cakey heavy finishes. A fluffy powder brush is usually best. I will cover all these in more detail when we get to the Product Series post on powders so stay tuned.

* You can turn your regular concealer formulas into colorstay / long wearing formulas by applying your favorite eye primer to the area before you go in with your concealer ;)

And here we are beauties! I know this was a long post but I didn’t want to leave anything out. I hope this post helped answer some of your questions and let me know in the comments if you need further info on anything.

 

What’s your favorite concealer and tool to apply it with? xx

 
 

Tarte Bon Voyage Collector’s Set & Travel Bag

Hello beauties! As the holiday season is fast approaching, many brands have already started to roll out their limited edition packs. I’ve been keeping a close eye over these releases and sussing out value for money deals. And of all the sets I’ve looked at, Tarte Cosmetics Bon Voyage Collector’s Set & Travel Bag wins this category hands down!

At $59 with a retail value of $423, this set is an absolute must. Get it HERE

 
Tarte Bon Voyage Collector's Set & Travel Bag

The set includes: a generous size gold travel bag adorned with purple floral pattern; 1x High Performance Naturals eyeshadow palette containing 20x 0.07oz eyeshadows; 1x LipSurgence lip tint in Romantic; 1x LipSurgence lip gloss in Visionary; 1x Limited-edition deluxe cheek stain in Muse; 1x Deluxe Maracuja oil; 1x Deluxe lights, camera, lashes 4-in-1 mascara; 1x Deluxe smooth operator Amazonian clay finishing powder
 

TARTE HIGH PERFORMANCE NATURALS EYESHADOW PALETTE (20 shades)

The star of the set is no doubt this amazing 20 color natural eyeshadow palette. Each eyeshadow is 0.07oz which is very generous for a holiday palette. Apart from the buttery, high pigment color payoff that we’ve come to expect from Tarte eyeshadows, what sold me the most about this palette is the color range and the balance of matte shades vs shimmer colors. I couldn’t even begin to describe the endless looks that can be created with this palette.

 

Tarte Bon Voyage Eyeshadow Palette

Tarte Bon Voyage Eyeshadow Palette

 

Here’s a close up of the colors I’ve photographed to give you a better idea of the color range. I couldn’t swatch the products this time, as I purchased it with the intention of giving it as a gift, however I’m melting over it so much that it will probably be too hard to part with :) There are 10 matte and 10 shimmer colors. With gorgeous bronze and brown shades, as well as soft taupes and pink accents, there are also pops of color with deep purples, shimmery green and perfect darks to create amazing smokey eyes. And how cute are the names please!

M=Matte / S=Shimmer

Tarte Bon Voyage Eyeshadow Palette

Row 1: Palace of Versaille (M); Moulin Rouge (M); I Think I Cannes (M); My Own Cotes Du Rhone (M); Boudoir Noir (M)

Row 2: Fall in Louvre (M); Provence Upon A Time (S); Eiffel For You (M); Too Haute To Handle (S); Bastille In The Night (S)

Row 3: Chantilly Lace (S); Merci You Later (M); No Champagne No Gain (S); Take On Bordeaux (M); French Riviera (S)

Row 4: C’est La Vie (S); Marseille The Word (S); Play Nice (M); On A Good Notre Dame (M); Le Cordon Bleu (M)

 

LipSURGENCE LIP TINT, LipSURGENCE LIP GLOSS & CHEEK STAIN

Tarte Bon Voyage Set

Lip Surgence Lip Tint in Romantic (peachy nude); Lipsurgence Lip Gloss in Visionary (peach/apricot); Deluxe Cheek Tint in Muse (soft nude) 

LipSurgence Lip Tint and LipSurgence Lip Gloss are both full size! These retail at $19-$24 each so it’s a great indication of why this set is great value for money. Both lip products are a natural peachy apricot color and they look beautiful together or worn alone.

Cheek Tint is a deluxe size and the color is limited edition. It has a subtle peachy shimmer. It would look beautiful as a blush on fair skin tones and a gorgeous highlight for deep/dark skin tones.

 

MARACUJA OIL; LIGHTS CAMERA LASHES MASCARA; SMOOTH OPERATOR SETTING POWDER

Tarte Bon Voyage Set

Last few members of this amazing set are all deluxe size but don’t let it fool you as a tiny amount of these products will last you a long time. I always appreciate sample sizes too as it’s a great way to discover new favorites without committing to full size.

Tarte’s Maracuja Oil is renowned for its nourishing qualities, as well as being a multi-use product. You can use it as a moisturiser/serum on the face, as a moisturiser for the body and even as a repairing serum for the hair. The bottle comes with a dropper so you can control the amount of product you use.

Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Setting Powder is a finely milled powder with no color so it’s perfect to use on any skin tone. It’s also great for setting under eye concealer without adding a thick layer of product as conventional setting powders can do at times. It feels like silk over the skin.

Lights Camera Lashes Mascara is one of Tarte’s best sellers. I haven’t personally used it as you guys know I’m a devout fan of my Lancome Hypnose Drama but again, this is a good way to test out a product if you’re after a new mascara to add volume and length.

In summary, Tarte’s Bon Voyage Holiday Set is probably the best value for money release that I’ve seen so far. They’ve been very generous in including the 20-shadow palette as well as the 2 full size lip products. Coupled with the full size travel bag and the deluxe products, I would say grab this set either for yourself or as a gift for that special someone before they all disappear off the shelves ;)

SHOP THIS LINE

Click on the pictures to be taken to the online store

 

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Bon Voyage Set / LipSurgence Lip Tint / LipSurgence Lip Gloss / Cheek Stain / Maracuja Oil / Amazonian Clay Setting Powder / LCL Mascara  

 

Have you guys purchased any holiday sets? What’s your favorite? xx