June: New Findings and Favorites

June has been a trying month and I’d be remiss if I didn’t say I’m happy (though somewhat nostalgic since it’s the first month since I’ve received my BA) that this month is coming to a close. Here are my favorite things from this month that helped keep me sane.

Recipes:

My go to cookie recipe for whenever I’m in a bad mood (that’s when I bake) is this Soft Snickerdoodle Cookie Recipe. The taste of these cookies make me feel like I’ve done something right in my life. I feel like a baking god even though all I do is follow the recipe. If 24 cookies is too much for you, halve the recipe or freeze/ refrigerate some of the dough.

Alternatively, since I’m a vegetarian I eat a lot of alternative protein sources like tofu. This Crispy Tofu Recipe leads to wonderful tasting tofu (I know, that’s an oxymoron for a lot of people) that can be combined with many-a-dish for a satisfying meat free meal. You can even make tacos with these tofu bits.

Clothing:

I’m waiting on a clothing haul I ordered but my current favorite item that I wear everyday is this Floppy Sun Hat from Amazon in the color beige. I’m serious about my sun protection and this hat makes me feel more secure walking around outside after my sunscreen has doubtlessly worn off (because if I’m wearing makeup I find it hard to reapply every two hours as directed).

Beverages:

This one is simple: Polar water. Get it in your favorite flavor from Walmart, grocery stores, etc and rejoice in water that tastes almost like soda but has zero calories. This might be the lazy person’s approach to getting enough water, but it has made my water drinking go up exponentially. My favorite flavors are the limited addition Strawberry Sunrise and Pineapple Grapefruit.

Media:

I’m used to reading 200+ books a year but this year got off to a shaky start with numerous health problems, stresses, etc. so I haven’t read a lot at all. However, I started reading again because I was able to find a new combined addition of a series from one of my favorite authors N.K. Jemisin, called The Dreamblood Duology. She’s an awesome sci-fi writer who is really expanding the genre as far as inclusivity, quality, and world-building goes. The last book in her The Broken Earth trilogy, The Stone Sky is coming out in August and I couldn’t be more excited.

As far as TV goes, I recently watched the Handmaid’s Tale and the second season of Sense8. Both were fantastic. The Handmaid’s Tale is one of the few TV shows/ movies that I felt added to it’s source material instead of detracting from it and it explored dystopian terror in the way that I feel is highly relevant to America’s current political atmosphere (despite the fact that the book was written in the 80s, though the show was altered to take place in modern times).

Sense8 was just a wonderful, highly dynamic show to watch. The relationships, depiction of people from all different races, walks of life, and sexualities gave me a feeling a hope while I watched it. It was also a sci-fi show, which made it extra enjoyable for me. Thankfully, even though the show got canceled, it’s coming back for a feature length movie.

Beauty:

I haven’t been wearing that many products this month, and definitely not many new ones. My go-tos have been mainly lip products because my lips are so chapped during the summer months.

Fresh’s Lip Treatment SPF in Berry and Jack Black’s SPF Lip Balm have been my two spf lip balms, my choice varying on whether or not I want some tint or a clear balm for underneath makeup. Smith’s Mocha Rose  is my favorite all-round lip balm because it smells so good.

My newest lipstick that I’d been coveting for awhile and finally purchased is Bite Beauty’s Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Dragonfruit because I love the name and the beautiful, summery, magenta/violet color for the warm months.

My favorite eye product in recent memory (that seriously packs a punch) is  Stilla’s Magnificent Metals Liquid Eyeshadow in Diamond Dust. It’s a lovely product that makes my eyes sparkle to the high heavens and I’ve never worn anything that got me more compliments on my eye look (I usually pair it with shadows from The Modern Renaissance Palette by Anastasia Beverly Hills but it can definitely be worn alone). Just make sure you use glitter glue. All of the shades in this line are amazing and I’m looking to purchase Sunset Cove in the near future to create a perfect mermaid eye.

Dries Van Noten par Frederic Malle was a graduation gift and it’s my favorite fragrance of all time. To me it smells like a french bakery. I can’t get enough of it. I keep it on my new vanity in view of my bed so I can stare at the bottle.

I’ve found my favorite Etsy shop called the Tattoorary which makes a whole bunch of beautiful temporary tattoos in various prints/ patterns and designs. My current favorite is this vintage floral design which looks very similar to something I want permanently tattooed on me in the near future. Right now I’m ordering these to figure out where I might want something permanently placed, if I truly like the idea of ink on my body, and simply to have fun.

That about wraps it up. What were your favorite products/ items over the past couple of months?

 

 

Cruelty Free Makeup in Every Category

I went Vegetarian almost two years ago and I decided to go cruelty free with my makeup purchases six months after that. Six months later in the summer of 2016 I decided to purchase non-cruelty free makeup again.  Why? A lot of cruelty free makeup companies aren’t available at the drugstore and many cruelty free makeup companies are owned by companies that test on animals. Additionally, many of the ingredients in cruelty free makeup have been tested on animals and therefore, consist of ingredients that have benefited from the ability to test on animals (a fact which many companies don’t advertise). Some of these ingredients are also  known to be harmful to both humans and animals. It seemed to me to be a on-win-situation. Still, most of the makeup I purchase is cruelty free because despite my cynicism and research, I do believe in an individual’s power to make informed purchasing power and I don’t agree with animal cruelty. However, I’m not here to say what’s right or wrong, even as I’m strongly considering making the decision to go cruelty free again. There are a lot of factors that go into that decision, including wealth, accessibility, safety, and personal beliefs, which mean that I am most definitely not going to sit here and say that cruelty free is the way to go for everyone without considering all factors involved. What I am going to do is offer some well researched options and allow you to make your own decisions based on what you are looking for in makeup. Each category includes affordable options.

SPF: One thing I will always say no matter what is don’t ignore sun protection. Don’t do it.

Elta MD makes great chemical and physical SPFs and is cruelty free

Glossier’s Invisible Shield is  a good chemical SPF that doesn’t break me out, is good for sensitive skin, and is colorless.

CeraVe has as SPF, cruelty free options in a variety of formulas.

Moisturizer:

I exclusively use CeraVe’s night time PM moisturizer or Moisturizing Lotion. They’re fantastic options that haven’t failed me yet.

Primer:

Elf has several good primers that are effective and cheap but my favorite is NYX’s Pore Filler. It’s identical to Benefit’s Porefessional and genuinely works.

Foundation/ Base:

Nar’s Radiant Tinted Moisturizer has SPF 30 and comes in a variety of colors with a beautiful finish.

Wet N Wild’s Photofocus line comes in 20 shades and looks beautiful and subtle on the skin. My favorite traditional foundation I’ve ever tried. Very affordable

Concealer/ Correctors:

Nar’s Radiant Creamy Concealer is quite beautiful for all over the skin and for highlighting

Glossier’s stretch concealer is great for undereyes and dry skin. Limited shade options.

Wet n Wild’s Photofocus Concealer is another great option for undereyes and spot concealing. Once again, very affordable. Only six shade options. For correctors, try Wet n Wild’s Cushion Correctors in yellow, green, peach, or lavender for your specific skin concerns.

Blush:

Wet n Wild makes great, pigmented (sometimes too pigmented in my opinion so be careful), and extremely affordable blushes.

Glossier’s Cloud Paints are seamless and undetectable on the skin. A liquid/ cream formula.

Nyx’s HD blushes are my favorite affordable blushes, my favorite being the shade Pink in Town.

Nar’s powder blushes are the best and most impactful blushes I have ever tried.

Also try Bite Beauty’s Multisticks for some highend, cream to powder, mutlitasking color.

Bronzer:

Any of Physician’s Formula’s bronzers, but especially the Butter Bronzer. It smells like coconut and is a creamy, powder formula. Unfortunately this line comes in extremely limited shade options (for the most part light and medium).

I also enjoy Wet n Wild’s Cafe au Slay cushion bronzer for a darker, more red tone. And their contour palettes which are a dupe for more Marc Jacob’s expensive contour palettes.

Highlight:

Nyx makes great highlights in cream, powder, and liquid formulas. Highly recommended, especially the Duo Chromatic line.

Elf’s baked highlighters are beautiful if you work with them a little. Scrape off the first layer of product and they work like a dream.

Glossier’s Haloscopes are beautiful and faultless when it comes to minimal makeup. They leave a wet/ glossy look on the face.

Wet n Wild’s cushion highlight is a light pinky shade that is a dupe for Benefit’s High Beam.

Try Essence’s Pure Nude Highlight for an affordable, glow-from-within powder highlight.

Powders:

Hourglass’s Ambient Lighting Powders in any shade are a great setting/ finishing powder for all skin types and won’t emphasize dry patches.

Physician Formula’s  SPF powders are another great setting and refreshing/ oil-soaking option.

Lipsticks:

Bite Beauty’s Amuse Bouche Line is highly pigmented, great smelling, and my favorite line of lipsticks ever.

All of NYX’s lipsticks which come in a variety of colors and finishes. My favorite lines are their soft-matte lip creams, matte lipsticks, butter cream lipsticks, and round lipsticks.

Wet n Wild’s Catsuit Liquid Lipsticks are some of my favorite Liquid Lipsticks of all time, especially the shades Missy and Fierce and Berry Recognize.

All of Colourpop’s lipstick formulas. Highly affordable with limitless options. Seriously, try these out.

Lipgloss:

Glossier’s clear lipgloss is fu**ing beautiful and isn’t  goopy. I love it and it lasts as long as a lipgloss can last.

Nyx’s butter and intense butter lipgloss. The original butter lipglosses are very juicy and come in a variety of colors. Great for nude glosses The butter lipgloss formula is thicker and more intense. My favorite shades are Oatmeal Raisin and Toasted Marshmallow.

Lipliner:

I lover both Colourpop’s and  Wet n Wild’s lipliners for less drying finished that stay forever. Nyx’s Slide on Lip Pencils are also a beautiful option (especially the shade Nude Suede Shoes).

Eyeshadows

Nyx and Colourpop make my favorite singles in many different shades and finishes. I also love Urban Decay’s singles for a more expensive option.

Too Faced Eyeshadow palettes (particularly their Natural Eye Palette and Sweet Peach Palette) are my favorites all around. The Natural Eye palette is more cool-toned while the Sweet Peach Palette is warm toned.

Anastasia Beverly Hill’s Modern Renaissance Palette was well worth the money and has incredibly pigmented shadows. The red shades are my favorites.

Wet n Wild’s Color Icon Palettes are a highly pigmented, affordable option. Try Walking on Eggshells for a more natural, but lovely option, to see what I mean.

Eyeliner:

For liquid I love Physician Formula’s 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum for a more shiny finish and Nyx’s Epic Ink Liner for a more matte finish. Both are perfect for a cat eye.

Urban Decay makes my favorite pencil eyeliners for definition. My favorite shade is a brown called Whiskey.

Eyebrow Pencils and Gel:

Glossier’s Boy Brow in Brown is my all time favorite brow product. It plumps the brows, tints them, sets them, and applies in seconds. I wear this along all the time.

For eyebrow pencils, try Nyx’s Micro Brow Pencil (truly a quality, though not always a color dupe, for Anastasia Beverley Hill’s brow pencils). However, my favorite cruelty- free brow pencil for my brows is Elf’s two dollar brow pencil in Neutral Brown. Their eye brow powder/ gel duos are also fantastic and easy to use.

Mascara: 

This is the area in which I have the least experience. All my favorite mascaras aren’t cruelty free. However, I’ve read and heard amazing things about Wet n Wild’s Lash Renegade and Essence’s Princess Lash Mascara. Both are incredibly affordable and I will be purchasing them after my current mascara’s run out.

Setting Spray: Elf’s Makeup Mist and Set and Wet n Wild’s Photofocus setting Spray are great options to refresh and take away the powdery look of makeup. Also NYX’s Dewy Setting Spray to enhance the longevity of makeup.

Brushes/ Sponges: I exclusively use Wet n Wild, Elf, Real Techniques, and EcoTools brushes. All are affordable, as are the Real Techniques Sponges and the EcoTools sponges (my current favorites).

Thank you for reading! What are your favorite cruelty free products? My next step is trying some of Etsy’s affordable, indie, cruelty free makeup brands.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Favorite Berry Colored Lipsticks

Lipsticks are my favorite makeup product. I love being able to change how my face looks so easily simply by swiping a coat on and running out of the house. As much as I like eye shadow and have been wearing it for longer, it’s harder to master. Wearing lipstick just requires knowing what you like, color wise and finish wise, and then taking a minute or so it put it on. Nothing else. I wear lipstick, tinted moisturizer, concealer (sometimes without the TM), and mascara alone all the time and don’t feel any less put together. The look possibilities are also nearly limitless. Changing the color of your lips, even subtly, brings out different colors in your face and different features. It’s my miracle product.

My favorite shade of lipstick is berry. There’s a photo of me somewhere in a family scrapbook that shows me at 3-4 years old in a green and white daisy dress, with hair down to my waist, and the most beautiful wine color on my lips (most definitely applied by my aunt who was only 10 or 11 at the time). It’s the most flattering shade I’ve ever seen (in my opinion) and I’ve spent a significant amount of time trying to duplicate it. Needless to say, I have more berry lipsticks than I need. Here are my favorites in no particular order (it was too hard to decide):

Affordable:

Maybelline’s Blissful Berry (410) is the first lipstick I purchased with my own money (it wasn’t a reject from my Mother’s makeup collection). My Mom helped me pick it out at the end of my sophomore year of college. It’s a basic cream lipstick that’s a cool tone medium purple color that might pull more of a deeper berry-pink if your lips are darker/ more pigmented. It was the only lipstick I wore for months and I still wear it fairly often now… despite knowing that I should get a replacement. Now I like my berries with a little more red (like almost a wine stain), but I still think that it’s beautiful.

L’oreal Zoe’s Red is my favorite affordable lipstick. Unfortunately, I think its been discontinued, which sucks but that won’t keep more from checking stores and trying to find it before they all disappear. This shade is a more satin-matte (not completely matte but not quite satin either) deeper, but still cooler tone, red-berry. It’s labeled a red, and might appear more red on deeper skin tones, but on me it’s somewhere between a red and a berry, resembling the color of my favorite Cabernet Sauvignon on my lips. It makes me really happy and I wear it and it’s one of my favorite colors to wear to an event or with only mascara. The wear time is great for a more traditional lipstick. I find that I don’t have to reapply during the day because the color takes awhile to wear and it wears evenly if my lips aren’t chapped.

Wet n Wild’s Berry Recognize is another more purple-medium-berry shade in one of my favorite liquid lipstick lines. It has more red in it than blissful berry and is matte, but I don’t find it drying at all and I love the intensity and smoothness of the pigmentation. I wear this quite often. It stays for forever, but on my lips, does transfer (to be fair absolutely everything, from the driest of the dry formulas transfers on me). However, it transfers way less than anything else I own.

NYX’s Soft Matte Lip Cream in Prague is described as a ‘matte merlot’ on NYX’s website, which implies that it’s more red and wine colored than I find it to be on my lips. On me, it’s more of a medium berry pink with one layer, and a bit darker of a berry with another layer. That doesn’t mean I don’t love this color or this line of products. I own nine of the soft matte lip creams in total and find this shade in particular to be one of the best formulated out of what I’ve purchased. I love it so much I brought it with me when I went to Prague (I know, I’m cheesy) and I’m wearing it right now.  I think this color is the most universally flattering on my list.

Honor Mention: NYX’s Soft Matte Lip Cream in Copenhagen is the most perfect Berry-Plum color. I love this color/sahde more than anything I have on this list. Unfortunately, the formula is streaky for me. Maybe it’s just the one I purchased, but I don’t wear it very often despite loving the color when I can get it to apply properly. All of the other colors I own from this line apply smoothly and aren’t nearly as drying as this one. Still, if you can get this shade to work, it’s beautiful.

 

High End:

Shiseido Perfect Rouge Lipstick in Salon RD 305 is my most used lipstick because it’s super old and one of the colors my Mom gave me from a sample kit quite a few years ago. Let’s just say I wore this to a Winter Formal in High School and it’s one of the few lipsticks I liked at the time (I hate how lipstick looked on me until around the time I turned 19). It’s described as a deep berry but it’s really more of a medium berry red in a satin-creme formula. I adore this shade (if you can’t tell by how long I’ve kept it) and I’m terrified of it running out.

Urban Decay’s Venom is described as a bright-plum  in a cream finish and it’s exactly that. More of medium color because of it’s brightness, but it’s deeper in tone than most of the colors on this list. I bought it on my 20th birthday before Urban Decay discontinued it’s Revolution Line but kept this shade as a part of it’s Vice line. It’s the first high end lipstick that I purchased and I wear it mostly on special occasions (it’s my favorite Christmas shade) or when I’, feeling particularly dark. I usually don’t wear this alone without eye makeup because I love how it looks with other cool-toned colors, but it’s extremely stunning.

Sephora’s Truth or Dare is a satin finish berry-wine. It’s not quite drugstore price at $12.50 but it’s definitely not anywhere near the most expensive on this list. It’s a beautiful color with an impressive formula that isn’t drying, provides the perfect amount of shine without being glossy, and wears for hours. I don’t have anything negative to say about this color because it’s extremely flattering, wearable, and relatively inexpensive. I wear it quite often.

Bite Beauty’s Beetroot is a bold reddish berry that’s a new favorite of mine. Bite makes my favorite lipstick formula ever. The whole line smells fantastic (but subtle), wears for hours (I didn’t need to apply Beetroot at all), is creamy, non-streaky, and comes in the most beautiful and richly saturated shades. This color is a bit more vampy than some of the other colors on the list, which makes it perfect for me and one of my favorites.

Extra Special Mentions (my two favorites):

These are both beautiful, high end lipstick that were discontinued. I didn’t think it was fair to put them with the rest of the lipsticks because they’ve been out of stores for years. Unfortunately, they’re also my two favorites.

Bite Beauty’s Kir Royale is part of their discontinued Luminous Creme line and  is described by the brand as a bold berry/ wine. It comes across as that on my lips. On people with deeper skin tones, it appears to come off pinker and lighter. I don’t know if that’s because the one I have was a part of a limited edition holiday duo set (it’s a mini size that came with a lipgloss with the same name), but nevertheless it’s still a berry and it’s gorgeous. I wear this far more than I should considering that I’ll never be able to get a hold of it again but I can’t bring myself to stop. It looks great on it’s own and with brown and gold eyeshadows especially. I wore it on my 21st birthday, to countless parties, to class, etc, and I’m never tired of how creamy the formula is, of the smell,  graceful wear, or  it’s opacity. I’m also extremely fond of lipsticks named after alcoholic beverages. This is another shade (like Prague) that I think is pretty universally flattering.

Buxom’s Menance is my favorite lipstick. It’s a berry-wine-red creme lipstick with an extremely light amount of shimmer (I didn’t notice the shimmer until I looked at other reviews with close-up pictures). I wore this on my first important date and to other meaningful social events until I decided I had to save it so I could find a duplicate. On me (with my light skin and light mauvy-pink lips), it’s fairly deep, but not quite super dark. It’s a bold choice that I pretty much always wore with other makeup unless I was going for a more editorial-goth look (and honestly sometimes I am). This is the lipstick I want to be buried in, provided I die soon or find one in the future that closely resembles it. I’m also saving it to bring to the Bite Beauty Lab in New York City to see if I can have an exact copy of it made. This is the closet shade to the one I was wearing in that picture of me as a little girl and it will be a long time until I part with it.

Thank you for reading! What are your favorite berry lipsticks and what shade of lipstick do you like the best?

Note: Wet n Wild, NYX, Urban Decay, Bite Beauty, and Buxom are cruelty free and do not test on animals. However, Buxom, NYX, Urban Decay, and Buxom are  owned by parent copies that are not cruelty free and do test on animals.

 

Summer (or any season really) Makeup

My makeup routine doesn’t change too much when it comes to summer. My normal makeup routine resembles a lot of people’s summer routine: a tinted moisturizer with SPF, loads of sunscreen, SPF powder for touch ups (if I use powder at all), lip balm with SPF (yes, there is a clear theme here), concealer,  mascara, lipstick and/or lipgloss, and depending on the day, eyeshadow. I rarely do the full face with bronzer, primer eyeliner, blush, contour, foundation, preferring to go light on face products all year long, especially during summer, but I have some suggestions for lighter wear products that withstand hot temperatures.

SPF: Never skip on this, especially if you have fairer skin (but really no one should skip this step). Elta MD, Cerave, La Roche Posay, Neutrogena, and Glossier all have sunscreen options that work well depending on your skin type, budget, skin tone, and level of skin sensitivity. Think about whether you prefer a chemical or physical formula for your sunscreen.

Base: Tinted Moisturizer with SPF is a summer necessity . They provide enough coverage to even out your skin tone, provide additional, complementary sun protection, and give a glow to your skin. Despite having extremely oily skin, I find the options I’ve listed last a long time and give a pleasant finish to my skin that doesn’t make it look greasy.

My favorites are:

  • Nars Radiant Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30 (my shade is Terre Neuve) because it comes in a variety of shades, gives good coverage, looks very natural, doesn’t break me out (a real concern when it comes to having sensitive acne-prone skin) and the finish is beautiful. However, it is pricey and it is a bit luminous. I do set my T-zone with a tiny bit of powder when I use this during the summer to make sure I don’t look sweaty later on in the day. This is the product I’m currently using and loving right now.
  • Dr. Jart’s Gold Label BB Cream SPF 45 because it gives excellent, but still natural looking coverage (especially when applied with a brush), and has a semi-matte finish on the skin. I still need to set this if I want my makeup to last all day but it is rather long lasting. Unfortunately, it only comes in two shades and is pricey, which makes it an unrealistic option for most people. Despite how much I like this, I have to be careful when I use it because the Light/ Medium shade is rather pink on me.
  • Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream SPF 30 is a much cheaper option with the least amount of coverage on the list, but it will still even out your complexion rather well. I used this  during high school and college and this is the only product my college roommate/ best friend uses on her face (she loves it that much). This product only comes in three shades, which admittedly can make it difficult to work with, but it is sheer enough that a lot of people can utilize one of the options.

Foundation options if you don’t want something with SPF and/or need more coverage:

  • L’oreals’ True Match Lumi Cushion is my favorite to wear any time of year and for events because it still looks natural and undetectable on my skin, comes in many different shades, is easy to apply on the go, and can be built up super easily. I wore it for my graduation and it held up for hours. What sucks about it is that it’s not terribly cheap for the amount of product you get and it gets used up rather quickly. I still repurchase it but I only use it on special occasions.
  • Maybelline’s Dream Cushion Foundation only has six shades, but it has a less luminous finish than L’oreal if that’s not your thing, is longer lasting (not that I’ve had a problem with the L’oreal Cushion’s lasting power), has all of the application benefits of the L’oreal cushion, and lasts longer produce wise. I still only use it for special occasions because there isn’t a shade that matches me as well as I would like and I find it has more coverage than I want, but it’s still a great product.

Concealer:

This is my favorite beauty product. It’s the only one I find completely necessary and it’s the only one I won’t leave the house without. Putting some concealer on immediately makes me feel better and more presentable, especially since after trying so many, I found the right one. Setting these with the tiniest bit of powder will help their longevity but the Nars option doesn’t really need it.

  • I use Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer for spot concealing and sometimes on my under eyes in the shade Vanilla. It’s my favorite, holy grail makeup item–my only holy grail makeup item. The shade range is extensive and it provides full coverage without looking cakey and simply makes me happy. I wish it cost a whole hell of a lot less though.
  • Wet n Wild’s Photofocus concealer is another great option for both undereyes (I find that the Nars concealer is sometimes a little drying for my bizarrely textured undereyes) and spot concealer. It costs 3-4 dollars and works beautifully.
  • Glossier’s Stretch Concealer is my favorite option for undereyes but it’s not great for spot concealing, it’s a bit expensive, and while it provides a natural coverage, it doesn’t cover discoloration completely. I use it because it’s hydrating, doesn’t exaggerate problems with  my undereye area, and I enjoy the finish but I do set it with a bit of powder because it needs it or it will crease.

Powders:

  • Physician’s Formula has two great cheap options with SPF that have worked better for more than more expensive versions and don’t break me out. Their SPF 30 Talc free loose powder is useful for dusting on your face when you don’t need a lot of coverage (it keeps the oil away rather well) and there is a SPF 30 pressed powder version that provides a bit more coverage and is easy to use for touch ups. Both come in a few shades but the line could use a more range.
  • Hourglass’s Ambient Lighting powders are expensive but they’re extremely beautiful and fool-proof. I’ve used mine everyday to set my undereye area and give my skin a beautiful finish since I purchased it for Christmas. One of my favorite products ever.

Highlighters (a year round, but especially lovely in the summer,  everyday necessity for me):

  • Glossier’s Haloscope is a stick highlighter that comes in three beautiful shades, is easy to apply, and gives a wet look to the skin. My favorite shade is Moonstone.
  • Wet n Wild recently came out with a cushion highlighter that I love. It’s also easy to apply (even easier and slightly less tricky than a stick highlighter) and is very inexpensive. It only comes in one shade though 😦
  • Colourpop’s highlighters are creamy, nondrying, and can be applied with your fingers or a brush. Comes in a slew of colors and are cheap price wise without sacrificing any quality.
  • Nars makes the best liquid highlighters I’ve ever tried because they have lots of impact but can be subtle as well because they melt into the skin. My favorite shade is Copacabana.
  • For powder highlight I like inexpensive options such as Colourpop’s pressed powder highlights, Essence’s beautiful and subtle Pure Nude highlighter,  NYX’s Duochrome highlights and their Strobe of Genius palette.

Bronzer

  • The only bronzer I like well enough to wear consistently is Physican’s Formula great smelling, smooth textured, Butter Bronzer.

Suggestions in this category are super welcome!

Blush

I don’t wear blush too often but I have a few light weight options I love for summer

  • Glossier’s Cloud Paint truly don’t look like makeup on the skin and my favorite shade Dusk can double as a blush/ contour for those with lighter skin tones.
  • Benefit’s Benetint is a classic for a reason. It’s easy to apply, has a universally flattering color, and packs a punch.
  • Nyx’s Whipped Lip and Cheek Souffle functions much like the Benetint it’s a bit thicker though and less stain like), is way cheaper, and comes in more colors.
  • Bite Beauty’s Multisticks are a lovely cream to powder option that never looks unnatural on the skin but still provides intense pigmentation
  • For powder (which is not my favorite during the summer) I use Nars blushes (insanely beautiful, the best blush formula I’ve ever tried), Nyx HD Blushes, or Colourpop’s pressed blush formulas. All great, smoothly formulated, pigmented options.

Lips

  • Maybelline’s creamy mattes for a cheap but long lasting formula that doesn’t dry out the lips.
  • Bite Beauty’s luxurious feeling, pigmented lipsticks that aren’t matte but still last all day long. My favorite lipsticks ever.
  • Colourpop’s Ultra Satin Liquid Lipstick for a liquid lipstick formula that won’t dry your lips out at all, comes in many shades, and is inexpensive
  • Wet n Wild’s Liquid Catsuits for an intensely pigmented liquid lipstick that won’t come off and comes in some stunning shades. Seriously, try the red one.
  • Fresh’s Sugar Lip Treatments with SPF for a tinted balm that will hydrate your lips intensely while looking beautiful.
  • For glosses: NYX’s butter glosses or Colourpop’s Ultra Glossy Lips for inexpensive, lovely shine in a variety of shades

 

Other Summer Products:

SPF (seriously don’t forget that), a makeup mist to help your makeup last longer and get rid of a powdery finish (Elf makes a good one and so does Wet n Wild), a beauty blender like sponge or your fingers for application or a brush if you want more coverage, and blotting papers to get rid of unwanted shine (once again look to Elf for a super inexpensive but effective option).

Thanks for reading! I hope this helped you figure out some good summer makeup options. Leave what you like to wear during summer in the comments!

 

Skin Care (for the obsessed person)

I have sensitive, fry-an-egg-on oily, acne-prone skin. I’m also extremely vigilant when it comes to sun protection and (attempting) keep my skin clear so I don’t pick on it. In the past, I’ve had issues conquering my dermatillomania/ excoriation disorder. I was finally able to leave my skin alone (for the most part) by letting it heal, visiting a dermatologist, using copious amounts of SPF, and paying strict attention to the ingredients in the products I use. Yes, my skin still breaks out and sometimes I can’t help but pick on it, but for the past year I’ve had pretty nice skin and a lot of it is simply due to knowing how to take care of it. Below is my skincare routine and the products I use.

Mornings (daily):

  1. A gentle face wash. Either Soy Fresh Facial Cleanser (my favorite) when I have the money or a gift card, Cerave foaming face wash, or Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser.
  2. A Benyzol Peroxide acne cream on alternating days or a few drops of Glossier’s Super Glow facial serum
  3. A moisturizer. Either Cerave Moisturizing Lotion or CeraVe Night Time Moisturizer (yes for day time).
  4. Eye Cream. I use Cerave’s eye cream.
  5. SPF. My favorites are Glossier’s SPF 35 or the Physical SPF 41 Water Resistant from Elta MD. I also sometimes use Cerave’s Morning Facial Moisturizer SPF 30 but it sometimes plies on me but it’s great otherwise and allows you to skip the all over moisturizing step
  6. Lip Balm to prep my lips.
  7. Makeup (I always use a Tinted Moisturizer with SPF unless it’s an event. Then I use a cushion foundation.)

Extra step: Before makeup, if my skin is red, I use Dr Jart’s Tiger Grass Cream with SPF 30. It color corrects well without me having to add extra makeup.

Night (daily):

  1. Makeup Remover (if I wore makeup). I like the Simple Micellar Water best.
  2. Gentle Facial Cleanser (same as above)
  3. A Retinoid Acne/ skin treatment. I use adapalene 0.1 cream.
  4. A facial moisturizer. Either of the Cerave ones without SPF with a few drops of the Ordinary’s Hyaluronic acid+B5 facial serum

Treatments (mostly done at night):

About once a week at night I use Drunk Elephant’s Baby Facial TLC. On the nights I use this I don’t use the retinoid cream and the next morning I won’t use the benyzol cream so I can avoid drying/ overtreating my skin.

Once or twice a week (also at night and at least two days from the time I used the Drunk Elephant Baby Facial) I use my Clarisonic with the Cerave facial serum

I make sure to use some sort of moisturizing facial mask as well but I haven’t found a good one that isn’t a sample of an obnoxiously expensive product.

Thank you for reading! Let me know what products work well for you and what SPF you like. 🙂