Friday, September 4, 2015

August 2015 Favorites

Hey friends! I'm not gonna lie, I'm pretty excited to share last month's collection of favorites with you. I feel like I had SUCH a good month beauty-wise and really fell in love with a multitude of different things. Narrowing down the list to something that wouldn't make for an epic-ly long blog post was pretty challenging, but I think I've done all right. From makeup, to skincare, to some body bedazzlement, I think I've managed to cover all the major beauty bases. Come take a look!

Left to Right: Nudestix Lip + Cheek Pencil in Ripe, NYX Prismatic Blush in Golden Peach, Cover FX Custom Cover Drops in G20, Supergoop CC Cream in Light/Medium
Makeup. August was a big makeup month for me, comparatively speaking. I've been making a lot more of an effort to try new looks and share them with you guys on Instagram, which I think has also helped me better utilize my stash. One of my go-to staples all month has been the Supergoop Daily Correct CC Cream SPF 35 ($32). Since I've been using AHAs and other skincare that makes you more sensitive to the sun, I've been trying to be extra careful about using SPF every day. This CC cream is great because it's truly a one-step wonder. You get effective, broad-spectrum sun protection, medium coverage, and a radiant dewy finish all in one bottle. I don't think it's the most long-wearing product, nor does it make your skin look totally flawless. It's more for the everyday, "I want to look pulled together while I run to the grocery store" kind of situation. As you can see from the swatch above it does have a slightly pink undertone, which isn't ideal for my skin, but it still manages to blend out pretty well.

When I have been craving a more traditionally done-up look, I've been reaching for the Cover FX Custom Cover Drops ($44). I wear the shade G20, although I think at the height of my summer tan it's ever so slightly pale on me. This customizable foundation comes in a dropper bottle and has a pretty thin, liquidy texture. Instead of using it on its own, its meant to be mixed with a primer or moisturizer to create your own custom product. It honestly took me quite a while to figure out a combination that I was happy with. I've found that the drops themselves have a very matte texture, so mixing them with a mattifying base often made my skin look really dry. Or, if I mixed it with a moisturizer sometimes I wouldn't get enough coverage. Basically, this product is kind of a double edged sword. It's awesome that it gives you so much flexibility, but that also means that you can be in for a lot of trial and error to find your perfect method.

For me the a-ha moment came when I tried mixing my drops with the YSL Touché Eclat Blur Primer ($52) (you can also check out my full review here). This primer is feather-light and has a super silky texture. It mixes with the Custom Cover Drops really easily and creates this foundation that glides on like a dream and makes your skin look amazing. It has a sort of satiny-matte looking finish and lasts incredibly well. The only downside is that purchasing the pair will burn a $100 hole in your wallet. You do get a lot more flexibility out of each of these products, and they will last quite a long time since you only need a few drops of each to cover your entire face, however it still may be a cringe-worthy purchase. With the holidays approaching I'd say get your hands on a gift card and make use of those holiday discount codes if you're lusting after either of these products!

On the more affordable end of the spectrum, I still cannot get over how beautiful the NYX Prismatic Eyeshadow in Golden Peach ($6) is. It's vibrantly peachy-pink with a stunning golden metallic finish. Honestly the swatch above really just doesn't do it justice. I think NYX is probably one of the best affordable makeup brands you can get your hands on (which reminds me I should do a NYX brand focus for you guys one of these days) and these prismatic eyeshadows are par for the course. If you like that almost foiled, super light-reflective eyeshadow look you should definitely check out this collection. There are some other really gorgeous shades, and at $6 a pop you really can't beat the price!

This past month I also had my first go-round with Nudestix after purchasing the Limited Edition Birchbox for CEW Prestige Headliners Collection. Needless to say, I am OBSESSED. The Nudestix Lip + Cheek Pencil ($24) brings together top-notch quality with super easy application. I think the whole pencil format of the entire line is SO smart, as they're incredible portable, simple, and also fun to use. This particular product is incredibly creamy, and yet doesn't leave your skin feeling sticky or tacky as some lip and cheek products do. I think it blends out beautifully on the cheeks for a natural flush, and looks just as lovely on the lips. I couldn't have received any more perfect a shade for me than ripe, which is a peachy pink that perfectly compliments the yellow undertones in my skin.

For brows I've been reaching for the Chella Dazzling Dark Brown Eyebrow Color Pencil ($18) a lot lately. This self-sharpening pencil has an incredibly fine tip that makes it really easy to precisely fill in any sparse areas of your brows. I think the color suits me well (although it may be just a tad more reddish than my natural hair color) and I find it to just be really fast and easy to use.

And of course, my last product is one that I don't even think you can get anymore, which totally bums me out. I wanted to try a new mascara, so I reached into my drawer of unopened ones and pulled out the Korres Volcanic Mineral Mascara in Obsidian Black. After having fallen in love with their skincare (which we will get to shortly) I was really curious to see how Korres did with color cosmetics. I thought this mascara was really quite nice! The brush has natural fibers, but is a little less dense and therefore way easier to wiggle between your lashes. I found that it added lots of volume and definition while still managing to make my lashes look flutterly and natural. It didn't smudge or irritate my eyes, and generally was pretty darn good! So, if you've got any recommendations as to mascaras that are similar to this, I'd love to hear about them.

I had a bit of a love affair with Flash Tattoos in August. They're just so incredibly fun and let me connect a little bit with my inner free spirit. In particular I've been reaching for the Isabella Flash Tattoos ($22), which have a sort of Mediterranean vibe with their blue, sea green, and gold pairing. If you haven't ever used a flash tattoo, they're basically the same as any other temporary tattoo in application, but have a stunning metallic finish that very much looks like you're wearing a piece of jewelry. I did a whole post all about them last month, and even came up with a matching nail art idea to go with, so check that out if you'd like to see Flash Tattoos in action!

Skincare & body. August was a month of little luxuries for me in the skincare department. I pulled The Body Shop Spa Wisdom Africa Ximenia & Salt Scrub ($32) out from the cabinet and fell in love all over again. This scrub is just to die for. Not only does it smell incredible, but it's got a luscious, balmy texture that nourishes your skin and provides gentle exfoliation. Since it does dissolve pretty quickly when it comes in contact with water, try applying it to dry skin before you turn on the shower (kind of like a cleansing balm) and then rinsing it off under warm water. It also is amazing for prepping your legs before shaving.

Another treat for my skin this month has been the Korres Wild Rose Vitamin C Petal Peel ($64). I wrote a full review of this mask a few weeks back, so I'll spare you the nitty gritty details here. But this skincare duo does truly amazing things for your skin. It smells absolutely divine (a little bit like the LUSH Rose Jam fragrance, for a comparison) and will make your skin visibly glowy and plumped. It's a bit intense, so those with very sensitive skin may want to try and snag a sample at their local Sephora first to try it out before investing in the full size.

And last, a simple but total wow product for me this month was the Air Repair Complexion-Boosting Moisturizer ($20). The formula in this product is really simple and full of amazing ingredients for keeping your skin soft and clear and has the most reasonable price tag considering its quality. If you're looking for a no-fuss, basic moisturizer, you seriously need to check this out.

Hair. Things have been a little less exciting in the hair department this month. I feel like I've been trying to use up a lot of products that I've had for a long time, which I think is making me less enthusiastic than usual. However, there is one product that I've seriously been loving. The Macadamia Professional Weightless Moisture Leave-in Conditioning Mist ($22) has been my everyday go-to for detangling and smoothing out my hair post-shower. It smells sweet and nutty and basically incredible, and doesn't weight down my fine hair. If you often struggle with leave-in conditioners making your hair feel greasy or lifeless, definitely consider trying this out!

So that about wraps things up! I'm still recovering from my finger injury, so blogging has been a little bit difficult for me this week, but I'm hoping to make some serious catch-up progress over the long weekend. I've got a few awesome reviews to share, including a few all-natural goodies from an up-and-coming brand, a limited edition drugstore blush, and a sculpting and contouring brush set you don't want to miss. I hope you all have an amazing labor day weekend! I'll be back with more posts for you soon.

What beauty products were you loving in August?

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