Tag Archives: Wet n Wild

A Fancy Face With Drugstore Finds

21 May

Anyone who reads fashion magazines, glamour spreads, even blogs may wonder sometimes if any REALLY good makeup can be found at your local drug store. It can be very disheartening to see a killer shade of lipstick on a model in a magazine only to find out that one tube costs over $25. I remember when I was a teen, if I spent more than $5 on ANY makeup product, it was “high end”. Wow… times have changed. I decided to put aside the samples and products that I had gotten from some of the higher end beauty stores or at the cosmetic counter of my local exclusive department store to see if I could get a SLAMMIN’ look for a more reasonable price.

I went through my vanity to find things that I mainly use that could be close to or even equal in quality for less expensive products in my local drug store or retail store for the main products that I use. Now, let me state for the record — I have a TON of makeup. In fact, if I wasn’t involved in what I do as a writer, I’m sure an intervention would have been discussed. I can’t help it if I get products to test and try, get coupons for free items, and I get random products in the mail from brands that follow me on my social medias. But when I did some math in my head, I realized a lot of people don’t have access to many of the things I have. So, my quest began: could I get a great natural and/or glamour appearance with products from my local drugstore without breaking the bank? A full face—from foundation to lip gloss–for a high-quality, almost red-carpet look? Hmmm… Let’s see how I did…

Foundation: There are a ton out there, any glamourista knows that. The problem with foundations is that everyone wants something different from them. Some people need a formula for dry skin, one for oily skin, some like mineral liquids, and others like a powder foundation. Finding one really depends on what your skin type is like. We will just take my skin as a basis for this test. I have super sensitive skin (thank you, red hair) and can go from dry to oily in a matter of 24 hours. After being at The Makeup Show this past weekend, I kept hearing about professional makeup artists using NYX Cosmetics’s “Total Control Drop Foundation”. Okay, wait—these world famous MUAs who have access to ANY brand at ANY cost are picking a drugstore foundation to have in their cosmetic kits? I had to know why. I stopped by the brand booth at the show and talked to two fabulous brand representatives from NYX. They agreed—makeup artists from all over are carrying their Total Control Drop Foundation with them. Why? Well, I bought one to find out. I will say, it IS pretty awesome. It has a dropper so you can get just the amount you need without oversaturating your skin. It is light, buildable, and didn’t irritate my sensitive skin at all. Available in 24 shades, it wasn’t hard to find one that matched my very pale skin easily. I like the fact you can “add” things to it so your skin can get an even better look: a color adjuster, a mattifier or even a primer. I was super excited to find this product at The Makeup Show! A great deal for $14.

Setting Powder: Setting powders, for some of us “old schoolers” remind us about when they were skin-toned (not mine), turned into a shiny cookie from the talc, and gave us a nice orange glow. I was over that one fast. I just gave up on the powder thing for MANY years. Then… ta-da! I received a free sample of this new, high end HD powder. It wasn’t a pressed powder–it was loose. Not very easy to carry with me. Not to mention, it was white! Who wears white powder? After reading the details and practicing its application, I came to love it fast! It was translucent when applied to the skin and set my makeup perfectly. I bought a jar and, honestly, to this date, I still have it—it lasts forever! Then, about six months ago, I received an item in a monthly subscription box. It was NYX’s High Definition Finishing Powder. Yeah, there’s that NYX brand again! I put it on my vanity and let it set. One day, when laziness was at its max, I realized I needed an all over evenness to my skin and grabbed NYX’s powder since it was close by and tossed it in my purse to apply at work. Wow…was I amazed! A big brush swiped over the powder compact with a light dusting all over my makeup gave me a soft, flawless look. I was very surprised! I was even more surprised at the price. It ended up being 1/3 of the cost of my high end brand. And it did the same thing. Having this powder in a compact made it easier to carry with me as well. It has now become a staple in my purse. A fabulous price at $10.00

Blush: With my skin being very pale, I do not need a lot of blush to get a rosy hue to my cheeks. In fact, there are times when a pinch with my fingers right on my cheekbones gives me enough color for an hour or so. (That’s a nice trick to remember when your face needs a slight glow.) While I was flipping through a doctor’s office magazine, I saw this ad featuring a beautiful model with gorgeous cheeks. I was shocked when I saw what she had used… e.l.f. Blush in Fuchsia Fusion. I didn’t think this redhead could pull of a color like that but I wanted to try. Wow, I was surprised! I certainly did not need a lot of color, but the shade was gorgeous. Just a tiny sweep on my cheeks upwards was the perfect color I needed. Although it looks a little bold in the package, it gives me a healthy glow. And a little goes a long way. A great find for only $3

Eye Shadow: This is another personal preference. I know people who despise crayon colors, some who love loose mineral colors, and others who only wear natural colored pallets. In my career, I am busy and free time is limited. Because of that, I want—and need—an eye shadow that will last all day. Now me, specifically? I want a shadow that is glittery, shimmery and a long-time wear power. After seeing ads (and with a coupon in hand), I set out to get myself a L’Oreal Infallible 24HR Eye Shadow color. This easy to apply creamy shadow can be put on with your finger or even a tight brush (like a concealer brush) for more precise application. If you want to combine two or three shades, use a brush to get the colors you like then blend, blend, blend to get the look you want. Keeping it simple, I chose to get the color “Silver Sky”. I used my finger to dot, dot, dot then blend. I loved it! Yes, it wore all day. Yes, it was super water resistant. No, it did not crease. I was just what this busy girl needed! Over the years, I have managed to collect about 12 different shades that I like to wear alone or with other shades. When I wear L’Oreal Infallible 24HR Eye Shadow, I don’t stress when I can’t check it. I know it is fine. $8

Now there are your powder shadow girls. That’s okay too. I have about 12… or 70… different shades of loose mineral shadows. There are some very high quality pure mineral shadows on Etsy (like Notyce Beauty & Deviant Cosmetics) but in the stores, I’m pretty picky. A while back, while wandering around a discount store, I found a trio of colors that I loved. They had natural, soft, and subtle looks but I wanted something bold. I grabbed Wet ‘n Wild’s Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio in “Spoiled Brat”. Since I don’t use many pressed eye colors, I was hesitant to invest a lot of money for just a few purse shadows. I could not, however, pass this trio up. Of course, other color combos were present and each trio had great shades of pressed shadows for just about anyone. Since loose minerals are hard to carry around with me, this pressed trio of shadows was perfect to give me a few fun colors at a fab price. $3

Mascara: Probably out of all makeup that is on the market, mascaras are the hardest for me to settle on. Every new one that comes out says it is better than the last. And I fall for it every time. There are also ones that I have loved that have just disappeared. UGH! I am often given mascaras to try from different brands to test and only a few times have I flat out not liked them. But there are also very few that I have loved enough to buy again. When it comes to drugstore mascaras, there are so many that I literally get overwhelmed when I go looking. I am not able to try any of those before buying and am afraid of getting something that will irritate my eyes or just doesn’t look good. I actually made a list of what I wanted with a mascara and what I didn’t then went on to various company websites to see if they had something close to my desires. After I chose my brush style, formula, color and longevity, I was able to narrow it down to three mascaras. The first one was difficult to find. It was out of stock in many stores. The second one seemed to do just about everything. I’ve been wearing it for a week and have had no eye irritation, smudging or difficulty in getting it all off at bedtime. It was not that expensive and I had a coupon too. Would I buy it again? Not sure… we’ll see. But am I wearing mainly now? Yes, yes I am. Every day. I like the results I am getting L’Oreal ParisVoluminous® Extra-Volume Collagen Mascara. A decent deal for $8

Eyeliner – Pencil: I am a child of the 80’s. Back then, your pencil eyeliner was awesome if you got it really sharp then heated it with a lighter. Looking back?…ugh, what was I thinking. Eyeliners have come really far since then. There are pencil liners that will stay strong on your waterline without having to melt them on. The problem is that most of them are super high end and are not cheap. One summer on vacation, I realized I left my pencil liner home. I got a little paranoid so I headed out to the nearest drug store to try and find something that could hold me over. Thanks to a recommendation from a customer, I decided to try NYX’s Slim Eye Pencil in Black Glitter. It was a little sparkly but not a ton, just enough. It sharpened easy, glided on without tugging and didn’t smudge at all. I liked it so much I went back and got a few other colors. I really like using the glitter liner on the waterline and then I nbetween the lashes with a thin line of the NYX Silver liner (or other bold color) underneath. A very chic look at a very reasonable price! $3.50

Eyeliner – Liquid: I have only been using liquid liner for a little over two years. It didn’t matter how many YouTube tutorials I read, the “winged liner” look wasn’t flying my way. Thanks to the help of a couple of my friends, I think I have finally achieved the look. It’s not always perfect and takes some time, but I can get there. The liquid liners that I first started practicing with were more than forgiving. I could make a small mistake and be able to fix it without much effort. The only bad thing was that usually meant that the liner didn’t stay as “crisp” as I wanted it to. If I wanted the winged liner look that day, I would have to use the liquid I had then go over it with a pencil or wet shadow. That didn’t always work so well. I was finally given some recommendations for a good pen liner but it was pretty steep in price. Especially since I wasn’t a pro at it. I tried it and was beyond thrilled with it, but that price made me wonder if there was any drugstore liquid liner with the same stay power. Fortunately I found one that was actually BETTER than the expensive pen I was using. Wet n Wild H2O Proof Liquid Eyeliner has a stay power like I have never seen before. It isn’t a pen (which is my only disappointment) but the applicator has a pen-shaped felt tip. It goes on smooth and gentle and stays ALL DAY! There is no crying or smudging or even wiping this off. Once it is on, it’s on! Now that has its disadvantages if you are a newbie to the liquid liner game. If you make a mistake, you need to fix it FAST or you will need to take it all off and start again. And to take it off completely takes the right products and a substantial amount of time. I find it is best if you give the applicator a blot on a tissue (hold it on an angle–don’t press the tip!) and go from there. That way you will have less product that can get unruly. You may even want to find a super thin, long handled brush to apply it with. (Instead of a makeup store, look for a good super-thin paintbrush at a craft store! Just make sure you clean it after each use so it won’t lose its shape. This gem is remarkably inexpensive for $4.

Lip liner: The main purpose of a lip liner is to keep your lip color from feathering into the fine lines around your lips. A good way to keep those lines from happening is to use your favorite eye cream around your lips morning and night. Eye cream is supposed to prevent you from getting lines around your eyes, right? So why not do the same thing for your lips. Find a lip liner pencil that isn’t too soft but that doesn’t tug when you apply it. I found that Rimmel London’s Lasting Finish 1000 Kisses Lip Liner was a great find for the cost. Available in 11 shades, this gem is perfect for giving you the perfect pout in a color that matches your lipstick or gloss. The long-wearing formula doesn’t transfer and can stay put for up to 8 hours. Not to mention, if you use a long wearing lip color, you want it to make sure it “stays in the lines” and a liner helps with just that. If you want, you can even use it as a long wearing lip color by itself by filling your lips completely with your favorite shade. And at its low price, you can pick all the colors that you love. $4

Lip Color: When it comes to an all over lip color, everyone has their personal preference to the kind they like. Some like pencils, others like regular lipsticks, many like liquid lip colors, some prefer stains. Whichever one you like best, you are sure to find something reasonably priced in your local drugstore. It might just be a case of trying different ones that give you the formula and colors you like. One little gem that I found is made by NYX called Epic Ink Lip Dye. Don’t let the name fool you. It’s not really a “dye” or even a stain. It is more like a liquid lipstick that goes on smooth and lasts a long time without any transfer. The colors are bold and give you a “notice me!” look. There are 12 shades to choose from in the current collection and run about $7.

If you want something that is fairly long wearing but is more of a gloss with a good color, don't pass by L’Oreal Paris’s 8 HR Le Gloss. I've been wearing this gloss for well over five years now and it is still the one I grab when I want long lasting, creamy color that hydrates. Available in 20 shades that include mattes, frosts and shimmers, this stay-put gloss doesn't feather or fade. It is a bit sticky which is not appealing for some but for someone who has dry, chapped lips (like me) they may appreciate that kick of moisture. You can find that in your local drugstore for $10.

One other little goodie that I recently discovered is a neat Lip tint by e.l.f.. Don’t let the color in the package deter you. It actually changes colors with the chemistry of your lips. It is moisturizing because it is infused with shea butter to give your lips some great hydration. It comes in three hues and can be put on at any time … even without a mirror! I had originally gotten Perfect Pink when it first came out but I thought, for a redhead, it was a little too bright for me. Then they released Perfect Berry and I was thrilled! It gives me that nice, rich, shiny light burgundy hue that looks great on my lips and matches my hair. They also released it in Perfect Peach which I am sure would also look good especially to match an outfit with warmer or neutral colors. e.l.f. offers these “Perfect” lip tints for $6.

It can be difficult to select a makeup item from a drugstore simply from a magazine ad or even from a recommendation from a friend. Not everyone wants the same things so without being able to try it out for a while, it’s hard to know if it is the right product for you. I tell my readers to do their research: read online reviews about the product itself at their website, search online for public reviews, and try sites like Influenster that cover all kinds of products—makeup and more. Use these to make your decision but definitely ask the drugstore if you purchase it and find it is not the product for you that you can return it without a hassle. This should be able to narrow your choices down quite a bit and take the worry out of possibly losing money on a product that is not for you.

So Sassy wants to know… what is YOUR must-have drugstore makeup product? How long have you been using it? And of course, why do you keep buying it? I’d love to share your thoughts on your favorite products in a future article. Leave your comments below so I can do some research on the ones you love too!

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It’s New… But Is It Good?

10 Sep

Back to schoolSchool is back in session and with that come all new fashions and cosmetics to help you get your vogue on! New styles, hot looks and chic accessories to help you make the start of the new season first-class fab! Today I stopped to talk to my favorite glamour consultant who was filled with the latest info on what was new on the market. What was cool is some of the things she showed me I had already tried, so I was able to give her my personal opinion as well. She helped me, I helped her!

So what are THE hot new makeup and glamour items out right now? Let me show you a few:

image1. Maybelline Volum’ Express Falsies Big Eyes Waterproof Mascara – The thought behind this product is supreme! Why someone didn’t think of it before now is beyond me. The concept is simple–the purple end of the mascara has a long, big brush to coat your top lashes to look full . The opposite black end has a very thin, comb-like brush to get at every skimpy lower lash to make them stand out. You can even use this brush to get in the corners of your eyes to coat those hidden lashes. My experience? I have been using this mascara on and off for a month now. The brush idea is great! I am really able to “get in” and coat ALL of my lashes with both brushes. The mascara formula? I’m not completely thrilled with. It does stay ALL DAY–doesn’t smudge or flake–but I don’t think it makes my lashes as “lush” as other formulas. I’m not quite sure yet if I’d buy it again myself. But for the price and stay power? Completely worth the purchase!

image2. Bath & Body WorksSignature Fragrance Collection Shimmer Mist in “Beautiful Day” – If you are a glamour girl heading back to school, then this is your time to shine! a shimmer mist gives you a flirty scent with an all-day sparkle to make you look, feel and smell fab. This scent paints you with a crisp top scents of fall apples, pears, peonies and blonde woods. Delish! My experience? I love, love, LOVE this new scent! It’s fresh for spring but has the scents of fall fruits to keep it seasonal. I layers this scent to help it last its longest: shower gel, triple moisture body cream, and the shimmer mist. No matter what is on my agenda, this scent just keeps me smiling all day!

image3. Maybelline FitMe Shine-Free Foundation – If you are like me, the thought of any type of foundation in a stick sounds like it would be heavy, greasy, any not in a shade that would match my skin at all. And up till now, that has been my experience. But Maybelline went a step beyond. They put a foundation in a gel with anti-shine core that neutralizes oil the minute you put it on and keeps absorbing to give you an all-day matte finish. Convenience combined with clean coverage–perfect! My experience? If the stop making this foundation, I’ll cry for years. In all my years of wearing, trying and testing foundations, I have never used one with such fabulous coverage but still feels light as air. I don’t have to worry about shine no matter what. It stays put and does slide off my face like liquids do when it’s hot. And convenient? The gel stick makes it a breeze to just swipe, wipe & go! A MUST-HAVE.

image4. Hard Candy All Glossed Up – I grew up on the glamour and convenience of pencils in a beauty routine and I’m very psyched when I see a company nowadays revamp the old crayon into a new, luxe makeup item. Sometimes they hit, sometimes they miss. The sad fact is, though, that crayons have a limited style life so they may be hot and hip with the current colors but then the seasons changes and the colors and sticks are gone. What is nice about these Gloss sticks is they are über glossy, but are infused with the long lasting pigments of a stain. Long lasting color with a non-drying formula. Exactly what a girl on the go needs! My experience? I really love this gloss stick. I have yet to find a straight-up stain that stays put, doesn’t dry out, or doesn’t stay true to its original color. Although this goes on like a colored gloss, the base color does stay true like a stain. Even if the gloss disappears during coffee or lunch breaks, the stay will “stick” around. Then I can just add a moisturizing gloss if my lips start to get a bit dry. Available in 8 go-with-all shades–great long lasting, drenching color that lasts. I will be getting more because they are SO convenient and simple!

image5. Maybelline Eye Studio Color Tattoo Pure Pigments Loose Powder Shadow – Maybelline is no stranger to the long-lasting eye shadow concept. Now they have come out with a loose powder with high pigmented color with no fall-out glitter. Yeah, I said those two things in the same sentence–no fall-out and glitter. In order to have this stay power in the past, shadows had to be a cream with a built-in primer and sealer. But now they have a loose powder in power colors that do the same!! My experience? Gotta say, I haven’t used it. But boy am I intrigued! I have more eye shadows than I know what to do with. But it might be a nice in an all-over highlighter color for me to build off of. Especially if it is high in sparkle and low in fall out!

Get ready–here comes the yellow bus! It doesn’t matter if you are getting ready to get on yourself or if you are putting on one of your own. Make sure you look your best! The glamour industry has so many innovative products now. Daily touchups are barely needed. Don’t think that these long-lasting make-up items are all hype. Seriously, most do what they say they will. I can’t tell you how convenient is not to run to the restroom every two hours! And as a student in school? It is a blessing. These all-day products certainly get an A+!!

Sometimes Nails DO Need A Break….

11 Apr

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been going really bright with my nails. I wanted a little oomph to my manicure and I thought some out-there colors and eye-catching hues would not just look good on my hands but also boost my mood during the “blah” weather trend we are having. It was a nice change to see my nails all decked out in flamboyant shades such as “Red Red” by Wet n Wild, “Go With The Flow-er” by OPI, and “Bling-tastic” Gem Crush Nail Color by Sally Hansen. Although the color makes my hands look fantastic, the minute I’d get a chip, the niceness all goes away. And once the chipping starts, it’s all over. There’s no saving it.

Because I have had bright, dark colors on for awhile, I noticed when I took my polish off today that my nails were looking a little dry and stained. Yucky. They needed a little love and attention. And rest. So I grabbed myself a natural-colored polish but not before I got my nails in good shape by giving them a quick, mini-mani:

 

  1. Remove all polish with a non-acetone nail polish remover. (TRICK!: Use lotion-infused tissues to help keep your hands and nail from getting extra dry!)
  2. Rub a good oil into your hands playing special attention to your cuticles, ridges and sides of your nails. Sweet almond oil works the best, but if you don’t have that, coconut oil, grapeseed oil or even olive oil will work just as good.
  3. Take a Chorlox Bleach Stick and with the brush end, give your nails a quick going over, avoiding the skin as much as possible. Let it sit for 5 minutes.
  4. With a nail brush (or an old toothbrush), brush off all the bleach using a few drops of your favorite fragranced soap or bath gel. Scrub lightly, underneath the nails as well. Rinse.
  5. Add a nice rich hand cream to keep them soft and silky. (My favorite? Tree Hut Shea Body Butter! Rich, moisturizing and smells good!)
  6. Give your hands about 30 minutes to absorb the moisturizer, then wipe each nail off with a paper towel, so any remaining oils won’t interfere with the nail polish. Then give them a couple of coats of your favorite light, neutral polish to keep them strong, protected and looking classic-ly neat!

 

So what are my go-to favorite neutral shades?

 

 

Sally Hansen Diamond Strength No Chip Nail Color in “Brilliant Blush”

 

 

 

MODE Nail Enamel in “Shade #118” (Sheer Mother of Pearl Pink) – I got this at my local grocery store on clearance for 75 cents!!

 

 


 

Revlon Nail Enamel in “Pure Pearl”

 

 

 

Plain nails don’t have to look boring. In fact they can look simply classy! Not only does it give you a simple, elegant look but it also gives your nails a rest from heavy dyes that can stain and dry out your nails. Not to mention, it won’t look like a puzzle missing a piece when the shade starts to chip. It will keep your nails on the down-low when only you know they aren’t completely up to par!

Okay, Fashionistas…. share on! What is YOUR favorite nail polish shade right now??