Celebrate!

What’s the one blush color that’s flattering on all skin tones? Peach! A good peachy blush is an essential in every girl’s makeup bag. I like mine with just a touch of shimmer to keep me looking young and bright. My current go to is Tarte’s Amazonian Clay Blush in Celebrated. It’s the perfect pinky-peach for my skin tone and always helps elevate my look. It’s long wearing and doesn’t fade by the end of the day, meaning it’s perfect for day to day wear. Best of all it’s from Tarte! The brand has managed to do the seemingly impossible and meld cruelty-free, vegan-friendly with professional grade quality. It will take you from the boardroom to the bar without affecting your wallet, your conscience, or your look.

Stowaway

Let’s talk about brand loyalty. There’s a lot out there about whether sticking to one brand of skincare or makeup products is beneficial, or if it’s a marketing ploy aimed at getting you to spend more money. I think the truth falls somewhere in between. Yes, there’s a benefit to knowing that a range of products is specifically formulated to work together – you don’t have to worry about messy and potentially dangerous ingredient reactions, you should have a lower risk of allergic reaction, and all your products will look good when displayed together on your bathroom shelf (it’s a valid reason, I promise.) But there are times when brand loyalty can go too far. You should never settle for less than stellar products simply because you like a particular brand. I personally use a myriad of brands when it comes to styling my hair, but stick to one brand, Glossier, for my skincare. Up until recently, my makeup routine consisted of a blend of multiple brands, and it still does for formal occasions or nights out. However, I’m happy to say that for day-to-day use I’ve finally found a brand that offers a high quality range of products that I can use exclusively to create my perfect daily makeup look.

I’m talking about Stowaway. This niche brand has everything you need to create a complete makeup look, and all of their products are stellar. Plus, everything they make is “right sized” meaning that it’s all designed to be used prior to expiration. Now there’s no excuse for using five year old foundation or potentially hazardous mascara! Now, for the rundown of all their products:

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When it comes to complexion, Stowaway offers a BB Cream foundation and a concealer. The Radiant Complexion Beauty Balm is the only BB Cream I’ve ever liked. It’s got a wonderfully natural dewy finish (that never looks greasy) and covers more than your average balm. Plus, it’s one of the few niche cosmetic foundations that comes in a shade pale enough for me. The Creaseless Concealer is nothing short of miraculous. The teeniest drop can cover my under-eye area and any blemishes or redness I’m dealing with. And it lasts ALL DAY LONG without fading, melting, or creasing. My skin has literally never looked more perfect.

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The next part of Stowaway’s product line is their Cheek & Lip Rouge. This is a cream blush that has a beautiful translucence and blends like a dream. When dabbed into your cheek bones it creates a beautifully natural flush that’s ridiculously pretty. When dabbed onto lips it acts as a stain that’s slightly matte. It’s truly a versatile product. It comes in 3 shades: Cantaloupe – a bright orangey coral that’s great for summer, Peony – the most beautiful popping pink that looks seriously youthful, and Burnt Rose – a deep, dusty red that’s incredibly elegant and perfect for evenings.

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When it comes to eyes, Stowaway offers eyeliner and mascara. This is why I say the brand is perfect for everyday looks, but you might want to switch it up a bit for evenings. Their Effortless Eyeliner is teeny tiny, making it perfect for tightlining. It comes in tow shades: Jet – a deep black, and Spice – a tawny brown. The liner glides on smoothly and dries to waterproof in only thirty seconds (so smudge quickly if you like a bit of smoke) making it perfect for running around in the heat of summer. My only issue with the liner is that it doesn’t apply well to the waterline, but I tend to only line a bit of my lower lashline during the day so it all works out for me.

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In terms of mascara, you have two options. Their Extreme Lash Mascara is really cool. It’s a lengthening mascara that is made without thickening fibers. This means that it defines and lifts your lashes giving you a baby-like look that’s both natural and alluring. Their Defined Lash Mascara uses massive amounts of tiny fibers to build, thicken and define individual lashes so that your lashes look plump and glamorous. It’s perfect for an understated touch of femininity.

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Last is lipstick. Stowaway’s Creme Lipstick is richly pigmented, long lasting, and intensely hydrating. The extra small size ensures that you can fit it into even the smallest even clutch so that you never have to go without a touch up. With seven colors, you’re sure to find one you love:

  • Peony: This popping pink is my absolute favorite shade that Stowaway offers. It’s bright, fresh, and makes me want to smile.
  • Scarlett: A bright orange based red that will make everyone stop and take note.
  • Fig: A deep berry that looks ultra luscious.
  • Cranberry: A vampy, blood red that is perfect for events after dark.
  • Raspberry: A darker, berry pink that’s great for brunches and afternoon shopping runs around town.
  • Muted Plum: Perfect for a natural lip look this flushed shade is my go to for the day-to-day grind.
  • Champagne: This is the only color I didn’t like, because it made me look slightly dead. It’s a true nude skin tone, but was too yellow for my skin tone. Olive toned girls will like this one though!

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So there you have it. If you want to give it a try, click here for a free mascara with your purchase of The Stowaway Kit, which includes the Radiant Complexion BB Cream, Creaseless Concealer, Cheek & Lip Rouge, Creme Lipstick, Effortless Eyeliner, and Defined Lash Mascara. Don’t forget that Stowaway also offers subscription services so you’ll never have to rush to the store for mascara again. Additionally, for those eco-conscious readers, Stowaway offers a Recycling Service that will safely dispose of your finished products AND give you $5 for every 3 products you send back for recycling! What more can you ask for?

A Pop of Peony

Spring is the time for shiny hair and rosy cheeks. It makes you look alert, youthful, and even angelic. It counteracts your winter pasty-ness, and is especially beautiful on us pale girls. So, if you’re looking for a way to welcome springtime, look no further than Bobbi Brown’s Powder Blush in Peony. It’s the perfect pop of radiantly bright, matte pink. Its silky texture bushes on smoothly and lasts all day long. The best part, it manages to be bright while still looking perfectly natural.

Now, a few tips on application:

  • Place the blush high on your cheekbones. Don’t go any lower than your nose under any circumstances! Placement is extremely important – get it wrong and you’ll look like a girl who raided her mom’s makeup drawer, rather than the youthful, vibrant, and elegant lady that you are.
  • Blend the blush upward across your cheekbone, and then downward for a natural look. We naturally blush downwards so using downward strokes ensures your cheeks look realistic and not painted on.
  • Start light! Knock off any excess powder before applying. You can layer for a deeper color payoff. If you happen to get too bright, simply blend a bit of highlighter, pressed powder, or foundation over the apples of your cheeks for a dimming, but still radiant effect.

Have any other tips for pulling off bright blushers? Let me know by leaving a comment!

Contour with Curie

If there’s one thing I love, it’s niche brands. There’s something truly authentic about brands that focus on doing one thing extremely well. That’s why I keep coming back to Onomie for all my complexion needs. The brand makes a point to combine makeup and skincare. They offer a healthy skin subscription service and donate a portion of their annual profits to help educate women living in  low-income countries. Onomie is truly a brand that does more.

Now, in my previous post you learned all about my love for Onomie’s highlighter in Lovelace. Today’s post is about that same highlighter in its darker shade, Curie. Now, Curie was intended for deeper skin tones, but I find that it is a multifaceted product that can be used in more than one way. For those of us who fall on the pale side of the skin spectrum, Curie makes an excellent bronzer. It’s golden toned and glides on smoothly. I like to smooth this bronze beauty  underneath my cheekbones. My personal preference is to apply with my fingertips and blend it out with a beautyblender. It can seem a bit dark at first, but if you apply it before foundation it ends up giving you a beautiful tan glow that certainly makes your cheekbones pop.

Want to try before you buy? Use the code FRIENDTRY when you order your Try At Home Kit to get the entire kit for free. Absolutely free. Now go place your order and enjoy 🙂

BareMinerals All Over

Every year when spring rolls around I like to add a little color to my complexion. Unfortunately most blushes are way too deep or bright for everyday use. That’s why my go to for a bright youthful glow is BareMinerals’ All-Over Face Color in True. It adds the perfect rosy glow, and never looks overdone. Most recently I was wearing it to a friend’s wedding and a woman stopped me to ask what makeup I was using, saying that I had the best glow to my skin she’s ever seen. What better recommendation is there than that?

Shy Beam

Spring is all about looking fresh faced, bright, and bushy tailed. That’s why having a good highlighter is especially important this time of year. I personally like something matte and pale pink for spring, which is why Benefit’s Dandelion Shy Beam Matte Highlighter is my new favorite product. It’s a pale pink liquid highlighter that you can brush onto the top of your cheekbones for a soft angelic glow. Since it’s matte you’ll never look overdone. This product is for day-time use, not for a night out at the club. Perfect for contouring, Shy Beam can be used over or under foundation and even alone. If I’m just running to the store I’ll put this and mascara on and call it a day. It’s that effective, and that fabulous.

Nars

Brand loyalty is something I’m extremely guilty of. I’ve been known to buy every single type of product from a single brand before just so that everything goes together. I don’t know if it’s something about the packaging, or if it’s just that I like everything to be uniform but I really like to use things from the same brand.

One of my current brand obsessions is Nars. It’s iconic, the packaging is great, and the products are wonderful. Here are my favorite pics from the brand:

  • Larger Than Life Long-Wear Eyeliner
    The creamy, deep color of this eyeliner is wonderful. It goes on smoothly and lasts all day long. The built in sharpener and retractible applicator are added bonuses that make this eyeliner a must have.
  • Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base
    Eyeshadows won’t fade throughout the day with this primer. It goes on smoothly and keeps your shadow in place all day long. I especially like using it with metallic shadows because it keeps them bright and popping.
  • Pro-Prime Light Optimizing Primer
    This primer keeps your face in place all day long. I use it daily and my makeup looks exactly the same at the end of an 8-hour work day as when I first applied it. It also has SPF15 for those of us who burn walking from the car to the office.
  • Blush
    Nars is probably best known for their blushes. They apply like a dream and are always the perfect shade. My personal favorite it Orgasm, but I really do love and want all of them.
  • Velvet Matte Lip Pencil
    If you’re wanting a matte lip color that stays in place all night long (even through multiple drinks) and doesn’t leave your lips flaking, this is your go to. My favorite shades are Cruella and Train Bleu. You don’t even need lip liner.
  • Satin Lip Pencil
    My favorite everyday lipstick is this pencil in Rikugien. It’s the perfect blush nude to wear to work. It’s so flattering that I’ve even worn it in weddings! Plus the creamy formula feels like such a treat!

So, if you’re looking for a new brand to test out, give Nars a try.