Trying out the Viseart Bronze Noix

I have two Viseart eyeshadow palettes, one a full sized Palette and one a small travel sized one and I absolutely adore the formulas in both. While the full sized palette it in a hard plastic palette, the travel palette has the same fold up packaging as the bronzer and in my opinion just looks a little bit extra special.

Since I have the Viseart eyeshadow Palettes, I tend to think of Viseart as an eyeshadow brand, much the same was as I think of Bite Beauty as a Lip Product brand. But this week I was just all about getting out of my brand comfort levels. I tried a Bite Beauty Foundation and Viseart Bronzer.

Because the Viseart shadows are very pigmented, I was expecting the same thing from the Bronzer. I was expecting one sweep of the brush to add a thick dark line of product to my cheeks that needed to then be blended out. I found this was not the case. As you can see from the photos, one sweep of the brush left a light line across the skin. (I used the inside of my arm so it is easier to see. The second swatch has a couple of swipes of the brush so you can see that it is buildable.

single swatch

It just isn’t highly pigmented. For me this meant it was a lot easier to control how dramatically i wanted to bronze my cheekbones. I would much rather build up to the level I want rather than put on a lot of pigment and then have to blend it out. I also tend not to lean into dramatic bronzing during my everyday looks. Most of my makeup looks are the sorts of looks that you would wear to the office rather than a club. Or these days on a video conference call I suppose.

swatch built up

I will say that once in place, the bronzer didn’t really fade that much throughout the day. It remained pretty much how I put it onto my face until it was time for me to take my makeup off for the day. I didn’t have to worry about looking washed out mid day.

I did have to change the brush I used to apply it thought. Tyupically I use an angled and slightly fluffy brush for my bronzer. With this bronze Noix from Viseart I ended up reaching for the Flat Powder Brush from Laruce beauty (LR375) I found the flat edge and denser bristles much easier to use with this bronzer. Even though I think this is a travel pan for the brand, the pan is a really good size. The packaging I like so much also allows the packaging to create the space for what is a full sized pan in a travel sized package.

the Laruce brush

I really enjoyed this bronzer and I can see it being one that I reach for a lot in the up coming months. I suspect that even with it’s buildability it won’t be one I can use in the summer when I am tanned, but it is perfect for winter wear (when some of my more pigmented bronzers are far to deep in tone for me to wear now). It will just require the use of a brush with densely packed bristles to get the best out of this bronzer.

The big problem I found was was that I could not find this product on the Viseart site. I spent a lot of time looking actually. I found several eyeshadow quads that I really want to purchase but the only bronzer I managed to find was in their FACE section. It is part of a bronze and contour palette. I actually have an e-mail into the brand to see if I can get more information, but as of yet I haven’t heard back. If and when I do I’ll post an update but for now all of the links go back to that face page. with luck this Bronze Noix is still available somewhere as I know once I work my way through the pan,. I am going to want to repurchase.


Making Changes with Bite Beauty Changemaker Supercharged Micellar Foundation

Bite Beauty has, for a long time been my go to for lip products. From their Amuse Bouche Lipsticks that not only look good and feel good, but smell utterly delicious, to their Agave Lip masks, I have been a fan for years.

However I have never branched out of my little lip zone where Bite Beauty is concerned. I tend to have that habit with a lot of brands actually. I will find one category of product that I really like and suddenly I will think of them as the brand that does great lip products, or mascaras, or foundations and forget that they usually have an entire array of products, some of which I might also enjoy. I remember seeing that Bite Beauty released the Changemaker Supercharged Micellar foundation and I remember thinking, I should probably check that out.

And then the next time I visited the site I picked up the maple scented Agave lip mask in a tube. (regardless of what lip masks I end up trying out, it remains a personal favorite.) Yeah, I completely forgot about the foundation I wanted to try.

Luckily for me the Bite Beauty Changemaker foundation was a choice item in a Boxycharm Premium so despite my memory lapse I finally got to try it. I’ve been using it for almost two weeks now and it has been interesting. At first, I didn’t really like the foundation. I used a brush to apply it and it didn’t spread very well and felt heavy and streaky. I was using my usual foundation brush to apply it and then going in with a makeup sponge to clean it up a bit.

In the places where I used the makeup sponge, I liked the way the foundation looked a little bit better. So the next day I left the brush alone and just used the makeup sponge to apply the foundation. It was a complete game changer. The foundation felt less thick and heavy because I was using less product when I applied it with the sponge. It went over my skin smoothly and easily and I was very impressed with the way it looked.

Because I was using less product, I also had no problem with it wearing away or peeling around my nose or mouth. I only had those issues when I applied it too thickly. Otherwise it worked beautifully. After I used the makeup sponge to apply it, I went to the Bite Beauty website. They recommend either using a brush or your fingers to apply it. While I had no luck with my brush and really good luck with my makeup sponge, it also applied really well with my fingers.

The foundation is also described as a light to medium coverage foundation that you can build up in areas where you need it.

I would describe it more as light coverage that might possibly be considered a light medium coverage if you wanted to stretch the term. And I didn’t have any luck building it up. It was a beautiful lightweight foundation that offered a great natural looking finish, but building it up to achieve more of a medium coverage didn’t work for me. Any attempt at building it up made the foundation look and feel heavy.

Which is a shame as it is such a good lightweight foundation. Making it feel and look heavy seems like an insult.

What I ended up doing on the areas where I wanted a little more coverage, was to go in with a concealer first and then blend in the foundation over the concealer. The foundation blended really well with the concealer and everything looked more natural. The concealer I used was one from Pretty Vulgar. It’s formula really blended well with the foundation and made it mostly undetectable.

I know a lot of people put concealer over foundation, but I’ve always found it easier to blend if I put it on my troublesome spots first and then blur the edges of the concealer with my foundation when I apply it. When I do it the other way around you can always see the spots I am trying to conceal as though I was highlighting them. So my preferred application actually worked really well with this foundation.

In the end I really enjoyed using this foundation. The foundation I have is just a shade too light for me. While I can get away with it when my skin is winter pale, if I am to use this foundation when the seasons change, I will have to get a darker shade. I think this foundation may just be worth keeping a seasonal shade around. It feels light weight enough that I might actually be able to wear it in the warmer months. Recently I started sticking with tinted moisturizers in the summertime instead of actual foundations, but this one is light enough that I could probably use it as a tinted moisturizer on days were I actually wanted the coverage of a foundation.

I think it’s natural look would really lend itself to summer wear as well as winter, providing of course that I can get the shade correct. They do have 32 shades so I’m sure the right one is in there, it is just a matter of finding it. I have pretty high hopes though. The shade I have is L20 and the image on the foundation splotch matches the foundation I squeezed out onto my hand almost perfectly so it is just a matter of finding the same undertone one shade darker. with luck, that shouldn’t be too hard a task. If you are interested in this foundation, when I popped onto the Bite Beauty website to check out the links, I found that this foundation is currently half off the usual price. Typically it sells for $44 but is currently $22.

I don’t think it is a sitewide sale, but they do have several products listed on their sale page and this foundation happens to be one of the items. I’m not sure how long the sale will last, but it is up now if you are interested in shopping for this foundation or any other Bite Beauty product. Several of their Agave Lip masks are on the list and as always, I will highly recommend them. And after this past trial, I have to say, this Changemaker Foundation from Bite Beauty is something I highly recommend as well.


Getting Misty with Peach and Lily

I’ll admit, when this product first arrived in a Boxy Charm Box I wasn’t entirely certain how to use it. I know, its a mist so clearly you spray t where you want misted. And I do like Peach and Lily, especially the serum from their Glass skin line, which this Peach and Lily Glass Skin Veil Mist is a part of. It just didn’t seem to fit exactly into any category. I couldn’t tell if it was a setting spray or used like a thermal water mist.

So I looked it up.

We launched the first-ever iconic Glass Skin product in 2018 and sparked the Glass Skin movement. The Glass Skin Refining Serum has become a staple for hundreds of thousands of people, regardless of skin type or skin concern, to achieve skin that looks poreless, luminous and translucent. We received daily requests for another transformative Glass Skin product. It took two years to perfect the ultimate complement for our Glass Skin Refining Serum. Now, the wait is over!

Meet the Glass Skin Veil Mist.

Our non-toxic, silicone-free hydrating mist delivers an instant glass skin look. Spritz throughout the day to keep skin replenished with hydration, antioxidants and calming ingredients. Each day we face a host of skin stressors – this luxurious mist keeps skin glassy through it all. Wear on bare skin for a hydrated, glassy veil or under/over makeup as a skin-improving highlighter. Refreshing, lightweight and highly-moisturizing with major glow-staying power. Think of it as glass skin on tap – anytime, anywhere!

Peach and Lily

To me that meant I should use it as a hydrating spray in much the same way as I use my Avene Thermal Water Mist. So I tried it. The bottle is frosted glass which looks and feel quite luxe. The mist is super fine. While the product claims to have a light cucumber and peach scent, Peach and Lily don’t add any fragrance to their products. And to be honest I couldn’t detect a scent in the spray.

The mist was fine enough to use over makeup without spoiling it, but it is not a setting spray. It does nothing for the makeup look, except when you are using a slightly drying product. This product is all about hydration and I did have a couple of foundation products I used where the mist helped them out. The KVD Lock it Powder foundation I really enjoyed, but if powdered products were put on top of it, they could look a little powdery. Spraying this Peach and Lily Glass Skin Veil Mist over it, took that dry look away.

I am in the phase of the year where my skin is the driest. Yet because I am not spending as much time in the sun, I don’t reach for my thermal waters as much. That is something I need to work on. And because i was testing out this spray, I kept it in reach so that I could use it throughout the day. Because of it my skin is less dry than it usually is at this time of year. Which is a reminder that facial sprays aren’t only for the summer time and should be kept around even when you aren’t hot and sweaty from work in the garden.

Over all I found this a good product. The mist is finer than in most sprays I’ve tried and the mist it produced was truly a mist that left no splotches on the makeup. It kept my hydrated and I really like the glass bottle. This Peach and Lily Glass Skin Veil Mist is an item I will be picking up again. If you are looking to pick up this, or any other Peach and Lily product, now might be a good time. Their 20% off sale is still going on and well worth looking into. Since I want to try this veil mist with the glass skin refining serum I went ahead and ordered a bottle so I can try paring the two to see how they work together. But that will be an upcoming trial. For now, the mist is great on its own and well worth picking up.

Shop Peach & Lily!

Trying out the AOA Prowear Foundation from Shop Miss A

I’ll admit, I was skeptical of a $1.55 foundation. But I will admit, I am willing to give most anything a try at least once. At least as far as makeup goes. And in general I will try it at least twice to make sure the first time wasn’t a fluke.

For the past two weeks I have been trying out this AOA Prowear Foundation to see how it performed. The shade I picked out may be a bit to light for me, which is totally my fault. with lipstick and foundation I am really bad at picking shades in the store. With the low price tag attached to this though it meant that there was very little risk.

Plus with a light foundation I can always work a bit of magic with a bronzer to balance it out. If the foundation works that is.

When the foundation arrived, I opened it and found I couldn’t squeeze it out. to use it you have to snip the top of the inner nozzle to release the product. I know, sometimes you have to be smarter than the packaging. I won’t tell you how long it took me to figure that out. But in the end, I did figure it out. After that I did like the dispensing of the product. It came out well and not in too large an amount. It is a classic creamy foundation formula. So it won’t run out like a serum will. I don’t think you have to shake it, but I found myself shaking it just because of the bottle shape.

I applied the foundation to my skin and then blended it in with my foundation brush. Streaks were left behind. I had to call in a beauty sponge to get rid of the lines. Once I did, all was well.

The foundation was a fairly decent medium coverage product. It will last all day, but you need to wear a pore filling primer underneath. It will settle into the fine lines around your eyes and the corners of your mouth. This is not a foundation that you can wear without a good primer underneath, unless you do not have a lot of fine lines. While I use many good skincare products, that ship has sailed for me.

just the foundation

Even with a good primer, you are looking at about eight hours of ear before it starts to really sink into those lines. This is one of those foundations that I found easy to apply in a hurry, if I had a surprise meeting as it does blend very well and very easily. It is just not something that I am going to pull out of my makeup drawer when I know i have a long day.

full face done

I have to say even with it’s slight issues, the foundation performed better than I thought it would. And to be honest I often find myself with unexpected meetings that I hadn’t prepared for rather than a full day of meetings.

settling in the corners

So for me, the longevity is not that big an issue. I just have to remember that f I quickly apply it for a meeting, I can’t leave it on and wear it when I go out. Having said that, I would definitely be willing to invest $1.55 more in picking up a shade that is more suitable for my skin tone and keeping this AOA Prowear Foundation around. I just need to remember it’s limitations.

First Impressions: TerraVibe CBD Age Defying Eye Serum with Hyaluronic Acid

This product was sent by the brand for the purpose of review. As always the opinions are all my own.

I have a new product rotating into my skincare line up this week. Well actually I have several, but this is not only a new to me product, but a new to me brand. Plus it is an eye serum. With eye serums, as around my eyes tends to be where the bulk of my fine lines live, I really like to measure their effectiveness. So I try to take pictures before I start using the product.

Unfortunately I then often forget to label the photos and have to go back and search for them trying to guess if that was the pre use photo. So I figured that to help myself out, and to share with you, I would post the pre use photos along with my first use and first thoughts on the product. That way there will not only be a record, but I am more likely to remember to label my photos.

So what is the new product? It is the Terravibe CBD Age Defying Eye serum with Hyaluronic acid. There isn’t a lot of information on the website. The official page states…

Ultra Broad Spectrum CBD with added terpenes and CBG, 30ml bottle

The list price for this bottle is usually $59 but it is currently on sale for $53.10. Oh and terravibe gave me a promocode to share with you as well if you are interested it is VGSKINCARE20 in case you want to try this out.

While I would like a little more description on the site, I do like that they have a Certificate of Analysis posted for the product. Which quite frankly makes me more comfortable using it. The Certificate tells me how much CBD is in the product and more importantly it tells me that THC is not in the product. While THC is actually a great night time ingredient that I don’t mind using to help calm my mind and send me off to sleep, I really don’t want to be using it in a day time serum. Also the COA (Certificate of Analysis) matches what is listed on the bottle so I know that everything is accurate.

I am still learning about CBD products and so I’m at the point where I am reading a lot of the documentation just to be certain I am actually using what I think I’m using. I might not need to read as much as I do, but I still read it anyway. This is a first use post and I will keep studying the product while I spend the next month using it, so I’ll have more to say about the details then.

For now the how to use is kind of important. While there isn’t a lot of info on the site, eye serum is pretty easy to figure out. There are directions printed on the bottle. They are actually interesting. It states…

full bare face at the beginning of the trial

Use a dime sized amount each morning. Using circular motions work lotion into your skin until absorbed fully. Use on your neck, face and upper chest. Best results come from daily use.

The serum comes in a white glass bottle. I really like that it is not see through a the ingredients can be protected from the light. The bottle also has a dropper to dispense the product. The product has the consistency of a thin water cream and has absolutely no scent.

While I don’t mind what I like to think of as the CBD Scent, I really like that it is a scentless product.

close up of the side of my eye barefaced before trial starts

In the bottle description I noticed that it isn’t just for around your eyes. Which makes the dime sized amount seem accurate. It it was just going around my eyes then a dime size would be way too much. For the face neck and upper chest, it was exactly the right amount of product to use. So I did.

I have to say my first use was quite positive. I started around my eyes and then sort of expanded out and then down my neck as I worked, mostly because I wanted my eyes and forehead to have the most of the hyaluronic acid benefits since those show my lines more.

There were no instant results as far as lines go, but I wasn’t expecting them really. As a first use this was just an initial reaction. The serum went onto the skin easily and absorbed quite quickly. It also left my skin feeling silky and soft. I was very impressed with it in that first use actually.

While I have used hyaluronic acids before and absolutely adore them for their skin plumping line erasing benefits, terpenes in skincare are new to me. From what I’ve found thus far they are supposed to be anti-inflammatory, detoxifying, and might even help control sebum levels. For me that will be interesting. I am not a terribly oily skinned person, especially in the colder months so I will be watching to make certain that this doesn’t dry me out. Admittedly I am using it right before a day time moisturizer, so that might not even be an issue. It is just something I will be watching as I use the product.

While I did a test on my inner arm and had no sensitivity reaction, I have never really used a product like this on my skin and am very interested in seeing how it performs over time. Today begins the thirty days of testing. This Terravibe CBD Age Defying Eye Serum will be my day time serum for the next month. I’ll keep you updated in my weekly skincare line up (posted Fridays) and when the month is over, we’ll break down the actual results along with my final thoughts. Personally, given how well today’s first use went, I can’t wait.

Trying out the KVD Vegan Beauty Lock It Powder Foundation

For the past couple of weeks I have been trying out the KVD Vegan Lock It Powder Foundation. It is not a completely new product to me as I used to use this a long time ago, when the Lock it Powder first came out. I had the old round compact formula. I always found it a pretty good formula, at least what I remembered of it, and when I received this in a subscription box I was curious as to what changed.

The packaging has changed a bit. It is still a compact, but it is a square compact with the lid designed to look like an old wax seal. I find it rather aesthetically pleasing to be honest. The compact dose come with a small late application sponge. I didn’t use this. Actually what I found to be the best tool for applying this powder foundation was the older style flat foundation brushes. I used the one I have from the Billion Dollar Beauty brush kit and it worked fantastically well. Actually that entire brush kit has made its way into my favorites list.

However for the powder foundation, the flat brush from the kit was prefect. It could get into the edges by my eyes and it spread the foundation out well. I tried a fluffier brush with this foundation and it simply wasn’t the best tool. For me the flat foundation worked the best.

I did find that when I used a primer under it, I had to let the primer dry and sort of settle in before I applied the foundation. If I didn’t give the primer time to dry down a little, I would get more of the foundation powder clinging to the damp spots than the rest of the skin. Because this is a shade lighter than I would normally go with my foundation, the spots were noticeable. And this was really only an issue with a wet primer. When I used something like the Benefit Porfessionals, which had a thicker consistency, the foundation didn’t have a problem. I was however testing out the Figs & Rouge Primer this week as well and it is a very wet primer, so I had to wait for it to dry down a bit.

Just the foundation

The foundation was more full coverage than I expected and I was very impressed by it’s performance. I did find that after applying the foundation, if I went over it with a damp makeup sponge it completely illuminated any powdery look the product might have. Even without that step it didn’t look all that powdery once it was blended in. It only looked powdery if I applied powder over it. When I did that, my skin tended to look powdery. As a result I skipped the face powder when I used this foundation.

By the end of the day, the foundation looked a little faded, but there was no peeling or oily spots. Over all I was very impressed with it’s performance.

End of the day

I would like to end with a small but rather significant feature of this foundation. This packaging is refillable. Thee is a pin hole in the back of the compact so that when the product runs out, I can pop out the empty pan and replace it with a new one.

As the KVD Compact is not only pretty, but sturdy enough to last a while, I find this to be an excellent feature and one I will take advantage of when this pan runs out. I might choose to order a pan one shade deeper though. Just for a better shade match. Other wise, this KVD Vegan Beauty Lock It powder foundation was a winner.

The Best Drugstore Foundations

Oh my darlings we have reached that time of year. It is the time of year where inventory is taken, gaps marked out and the list of current sales grows longer each day. So each year I look at the products I use or have used throughout the year and decide which ones are worthy of repurchasing. Because the one thing better than getting a product you like is getting it on sale. while some sales have already been activated, some are yet to come, as they approach I’ll try to list them. For now, we look at products worth bothering to pick up. After all, even if it is on sale, somethings don’t need to be purchased. It is only a deal if it is a good product.

Since I reviewed a drug store shampoo this morning, I thought it only fair to continue with another drug store item, foundation. Now some of you may be looking at the above photo and thinking that you see some Ulta products. When searching my Drug store foundations, I saw several I liked that I knew were from Ulta so I addend them onto this list since they didn’t really fit anywhere else. There is an Ulta in my town so I can pick them up just as though I was running to the drug store, hence their inclusion. I don’t have a Sephora in town so I order from them on line, but generally pick up Ulta products in person.

As with all my foundations, I go with medium coverage and I wear primer underneath them.

So on to the items.

  1. No 7 Lift and Luminate Triple Action Serum Foundation: It does have SPF 15 in the mix, but that is just an extra perk and not something you should count on. What I like about this foundation is that the serum consistency makes it fairly melt into the skin. It is suitable for sensitive skin and I have never had any issues with it. Because of the bendability of the formula the shades are fairly flexible. I can actually use the same foundation year round and simply adjust it slightly at the extreme light and dark times of the year (aka mid-summer and mid-winter). It is a beautiful medium coverage foundation.
  2. E.L.F Acne Fighting Foundation: I’ve tried quite a few Elf foundations at this point and I think this one may be my favorite from the brand. It is excellent if you are in the midst of hormonal break outs (or any other breakouts actually) as it doesn’t irritate them at all. While I don’t know if it actually does fight blemishes, it doesn’t make them any worse. I apply in a thin layer at first and then blend it in. Going light with this foundation helps it not to streak with a makeup brush. Of all of these foundations, it is probably the most long wearing. It doesn’t melt into the skin like the serum foundations on this list, but it blends really well and stays in place all day.
  3. Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless: This is a classic must have for a reason. It applies well, stays on all day and looks fantastic. The only reason I don’t reach for it more is because of the bottle. The glass bottle has an open mouthed top. I always end up pouring out more product than I need. I know that in some places like Look Fantastic, you can order the foundation in a squeezable tube that is easier to control. If you can find this at your drugstore, go for it. My drug store only sells the glass bottles. Normally I am all about glass, but it is the open pour that bothers me. I tend to appropriate a dropped from a now empty skincare product to use it. It is a great foundation, it is just that pour.
  4. Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation: I know there are a lot of people out there who dislike this foundation for one reason or another. I actually like it. I think I like it because I don’t wear it more than about ten hours at a time. The bottle says 24 hour coverage. I’d say 12 is more realistic. As I said I rarely wear makeup more than 10 hours at a stretch. And in that time, this foundation looks great. It is a fuller coverage foundation than the others on this list. It is still medium coverage, but it is on the higher end of medium. It is what I lean towards when I have to give a presentation and know I’m going to be under some bright lights and the focus of the room’s attention. Again, I wouldn’t wear it more than 12 hours, but in those 12 hrs it performs beautifully.
  5. Ulta Youthful Glow Foundation Serum Drops: I was very impressed with this Ulta Foundation. It actually came as a bit of a surprise for me. I tried a couple of other Ulta foundations and hated them. I tried this one honestly because I liked the look of the bottle and i think it was on sale. The bottle of course, has changed. I am actually almost out of this and will have to repurchase it soon. So I don’t feel too bad about the old packaging as it will soon go away. I do however like the older packaging more than the new. I will happily repurchase this foundation again. I don’t there are many Ulta products in general I would say that about, and certainly no other foundations. Part of that is that I like the serum style foundation. I prefer foundations that blend into the skin and feel weightless. This one does. It looks good on the skin and lasts all day. It doesn’t have as high a coverage as some of the other foundations on this list so I generally use it when I am having a pretty good skin day. The big thing to remember with this foundation is to shake well before use.
  6. Revolution Fast Base Foundation Stick: I seriously debated whether or not to include this on this list. But then I realized it is the stick foundation I find myself reaching for more often than the other products. Stick foundations are great when you are traveling or in a hurry. Well they are great in a hurry if they blend well. This one does blend well and gives good coverage that lasts throughout the day. It has a fairly wide shade range, however it doesn’t have a lot of flexibility. I have to keep two shades, one for summer and one for winter. As it is a very inexpensive product and quite contained, having two isn’t a problem, it is just something to keep in mind when shopping. It is a creamy formula and one that I tend to choose when traveling.

So there you have it, the top drugstore foundations I am currently using and would consider replacing. All of the links will take you to sites where you can find them. I believe some of the sales have already begun. If not, then just wait a few weeks for Black Friday sales to really get underway and then stock up. For me, all of the products but the Catrice (which I tend to use for public presentations which haven’t happened in a while) and the No7 (which I just repurchased) are getting low enough in product that I have them on my repurchase list. The elf and the Revolution products are the two I will repurchase first, the others will depend on the other items I need to replace. I hope when planning your shopping lists, this helps you out.

Trying out the IPKN Moist and Firm BB Cream

While I occasionally make fun of some of the small sample sizes that arrive in some subscription boxes, with makeup products, especially face products like BB creams and foundations, sample sizes really help keep me from making a lot of wrong purchases. Because that’s the thing with foundation type products. You really can’t tell how they are going to perform for you until you wear them.

And trying out a bunch of products can be pretty costly. I’ve used a lot of, not really for me but since I’ve already spent the money to buy it I’m going to just figure out how to make it work until I can justify purchasing something else’ products.

I know sometimes my list titles are a bit much. I’m working on it.

Samples of BB products are my friends.

IPKN is a brand I have tried before however it was quite some time ago. I remember a friend recommending them and liking the items I tried, but that is about it. Other than a basic mental familiarity, I have one lip product in my collection that came from them. It is a nice protective lip gloss that actually works well as a balm and I like to wear when I know I’m going to be outside in the wind during the winter. Which of course is of no help when evaluating a BB cream. For those curious about the name IPKN, I looked on their about page…

IPKN was originally defined as “Independent Professional Korean New Yorker”.
It launched in 1999 as the first NYC-inspired South Korean beauty brand, bringing a universal beauty sense to Korea and helping to shape what we now call K-Beauty.

IPKN Website

And while we are on the site, according to the brand…

This all-in-one BB cream combines protection and control for 1-step perfection. Moist & Firm BB Cream promotes brighter and more even skin tone, increases the skin’s radiance, and supports firmness and elasticity. 

IPKN product page

I have no problems with skincare mixed into my makeup. It doesn’t always pan out, but I do like the thought. So how did this product work? Well actually. It is a BB cream so there is not a foundation facemask’s worth of coverage. I’ve posted the two photos side by side below to show my skin with nothing on it and then my skin with just the BB cream. While I am a huge fan of primers, for this photo, I skipped the primer. But only because of you. With this BB cream I would use a primer.

Without a primer the IPKN Moist and Firm BB cream did cover red spots and blemish marks fairly well. And it did last about six hours without an issue. I noticed after hour six, there was a bit less coverage. With primer it was better and the BB cream. With a primer underneath it, almost any primer actually, the BB cream lasted the full work day.

Bare Face

While it does blend into the skin well and for me this shade worked out fine, if you need any sort of pore filling, you are going to want a primer underneath. Because this BB cream is so light and melds into the skin so well, it tends to emphasis larger pores as the day goes on.

As I usually wear a primer, my main issue with this was the moist part of the moist and firm. I’m happy to have a BB cream firm all it wants, lord knows my skin could use it. The moist part was a bit of an issue. Sometimes with BB creams you can get away with applying it, then adding a brief kiss of blush and calling it good. I can’t wear this BB cream without powder. I have several good powders to choose from, but the moist aspect left my face looking a bit on the greasy side if I didn’t pat some powder over it. And periodically throughout the day (mid morning, lunch, mid afternoon) I had to pat away a bit of shine.

just the BB cream
full face in natural daylight

If you have dry skin, this may not be an issue for you. It may in fact be a large benefit and keep you hydrated throughout the day. It was too much for my skin and I looked greasy without powder. I also live in an area of high humidity, so that was also a factor. It is just something to watch out for. Think about your skin, before purchasing. As far as purchase prices go, it is not that expensive. A full sized bottle is $24. I think that is quite reasonable.

With this IPKN Moist and Firm BB Cream I think that I could probably use it more in the winter when my skin is dryer and there is less humidity. It is a good product that works well and looks lovely, but for my skin there is just a small window where I could use it without feeling overly hydrated and worried about looking greasy. I would love wearing the product during that window, but as I have other BB creams that I like using year round, I think I would pass on a full sized purchase. However, trying this product does make me want to look into the brand more and possibly see if they have a BB cream that is less moist. I’m fine with the firm though. I didn’t notice a difference, but I’m willing to be hopeful on that score.

This cotton-blend skirt has a paper bag waist which adds usefulness to the ventilated long silhouette. Keep the details prominent by combining yours with a simple white top.  – High Waist – 63% Cotton 34% Nylon 3% Spandex

Face Palette Declutter, September 2021

To be honest, face palettes were an interesting category for me to declutter.  When I started to get them out, I thought that I had only one or two.  Mostly because there are about two that I use on a regular basis.  The others were more or less tucked in with my eyeshadows and tended to blend.  If you include the blush and highlighter palettes, the sum total of my face palettes came to twelve. 

When all was said and done, two are instant declutters and one is a ‘try and see if it is still usable, but I think it might be expired, so possibly declutter or just put away for nostalgias sake’. I know it’s a strange category.  Let’s start with the two simple declutters.

The first is the Highlighter duo from Complex Culture.  Complex Culture is a brand owned by IPSY and some of their products filter into Glam bags now and then.  I actually really like their brushes, but thus far I am not a huge fan of their products.  I found their eyeshadows patchy and hard to work with and this highlighter duo is just, meh.

It has one gold and one silver shade of highlighters.  The pan size is large, the packaging sleek modern and luxe looking.  In fact I really like their packaging.  It makes me that much more sad when I don’t actually like their products.  They aren’t bad, just ordinary. 

I have these shades in the same shades in formulas I like a lot more.  In fact I think I have repeats of these shades so I’m probably going to declutter some of these as well. I love golden highlight, but there are only so many you actually need. And this one I don’t need.  I tried each shade once and decided to set it aside.  I will clean it with disinfectant wipes and set it aside looking as fresh as possible for someone else to use.  But it will be passed on.

The second item that is being decluttered is something I wasn’t entirely sure what category to put it in.  It is the shimmer palette from Kypris.  I love Kypris skincare.  Their serums are absolutely fantastic.  These shimmer/highlights, not so much. 

If you use them as an eyeshadow then no matter what sort of lid primer or setting spray you use, they will dribble down your face in about two hours. With lid primer, you might get two and half hours. If you use them as highlighters, then they tend to blend in until you lose all color from them and just end up looking like a glittery vampire from one of the Twilight movies.

Don’t get me wrong, the look has its place, but that place isn’t really in my day to day look.  As much as I really wanted to love this, I just didn’t.  I think I really wanted to love it because I love their skincare.  I think I kept it in the drawer so long because when I looked at it I saw Kypris on the top and thought ‘oh I like Kypris.’  But the truth is I like Kypris skincare and this is a whole different thing.

And finally we come to the thing I ought to declutter and am trying to convince myself I don’t need to declutter.  And that is the KVD Shade and Light Cream Contour palette. Here is the thing.  I have had this palette forever and a day.  I know it has almost definitely reached the point of expiration.  And to be honest, there was one contour shade that I used in this palette.  Even when contouring was at it’s height, I never went in hard on it.  In fact the way I use my bronzer now is more or less how I always used my contours. I really enjoyed the product actually and I have been liking more cream products in general lately.  I never used the lighter whites and pinks and I used my one bronzer shade. That shade is showing pan and has only a little product left.  The other pans look virtually untouched.  The other dark shades are just not suitable for my skin tone and the pink and whites I just didn’t use. 

I think what I am going to do, in an effort to get myself to let go, because I really need to, is attempt to use the contour one last time.  I’ll remind myself how it works and then if I still like it, then I can look on the new updated KVD site. I know they sell the single contour shades in smaller palettes so I might just go for those. Or I will just get a refillable pan and take out all of the expired pans from this palette and just put the single pan in. I’ll have to took at options. I know they have a huge Labor Day sale going on this weekend so I may just pop in and see what variations they now sell.

With the changes I am not certain if it is still sold.  I will have to check.  Aside from that one use, it will not be used again.  If I keep it, it will be for sentimental reasons.  In general I am not sentimental about makeup, but I picked it up when shopping with a friend and that friend is no longer with us, so it is more a sentimental remembrance of her than of the makeup. So if it is kept it will be for that reason alone.  But there will be one last attempt to use it, if only to convince myself that I shouldn’t and that it is time for it to go away.

And that is it for my face palettes.  I don’t have a lot of face palettes to be honest, but the ones I do have, I really like.  I suspect the bronzer and contour palettes are going to end up having only one or two pans used out of them before I end up letting them go.  With the Ace Beaute there is really only one pan I use for my bronzer.  I do occasionally dip into the darkest bronze shade in that palette when I want a quick eyeshadow without bothering to find eyeshadow, but as it is a full pan of bronzer it would take forever and a day to use it as eyeshadow (and to be honest it isn’t very good eyeshadow it is just laziness or a time crunch that has me using it.) 

With the Park Avenue Princess Palette I can use the lighter shades as face powder actually so it will actually see more use. And quite frankly I do love that palette and I’m glad that it is now no longer buried and I can reach it more easily. I don’t think Tarte still sells the large palette, but all of the shades are sold separately so I would probably just pick up Princess Cut when I go to repurchase.

And that is really the point of the declutter my darlings.  It is to look at what has, in one way or another come into my house and decide what it is that I enjoy using, what I would like to pass on while it can still be used by someone else and what must, regrettable be disposed of. Of the three things leaving, two can easily be passed on.  It is only the sentimental piece that will either linger in the drawer or regrettably be disposed of in as environmentally friendly a way as I can devise.  This wasn’t a massive clear out by any means, but as it wasn’t a large category, I am satisfied with what I am getting rid of overall.  I suspect other categories may end up being a lot more dramatic.

KVD Vegan Beauty

It’s Prime Time: Primer Declutter

That’s right it is time to take a good hard look at primers.  I know, I love a good primer. And really only a few are leaving, but I will talk about the rest as well. So with them all laid out in front of me, let’s take a good hard look at what we have. 

First let’s look at the top six currently in my collection.  These lovelies are staying until the last dregs of product have been cleaned out of the container.  First we have the classic Porefessional from Benefit Cosmetics.  This is just a good all round primer.  It sits well under just about any foundation and it eliminates redness. To be honest this and the Elf poreless putty primer are the two staples I will always have in my makeup drawer.  Between the two of them they do everything a primer should do.  I have repeat purchased both of these and will continue to do so. 

The top six

Marc Jacobs Undercover (currently on sale BTW) is one of my favorite hydrating primers.  While it is good in the summertime, it is better in the winter.  It primes as well as helping to prevent skin from looking dry.  Touch in Sol ranks pretty high on my list of products and I think this might be the third container of this primer that I have purchased  Oddly enough while I adore the No Poreblem primer, I don’t really care for the other primers in the Touch in Sol line up.  For me this it their hero product and the one I will repurchase. 

This is the first Clarins Instant smooth primer I have tried and it will not be my last.  Technically I think it belongs in my top three products.  It takes down redness, fills pores, adds a healthy pink tint to the skin and feels super luxe to use.  I am about half way through the jar and know I will be repurchasing it.  The final product in the top six has to be the Tatcha Silk Canvas.  While this one is new to my collection, I have used it before and adore it.  It smells fantastic feels and looks good on the skin and just feels luxe to use.  It is the priciest of my primers so while I will use it and I love it, I actually have to think about it before I repurchase it. 

Needless to say all six of my top products are staying.

Almost empty

In my collection there are two mostly used up samples.  One is the Milk Hydro Grip Primer and the other is the YSL Touch Eclat primer.  I think I have two more uses in the Milk primer and maybe a week’s worth of the YSL.  I need to actually keep them out and use them up.  I have already reordered the Milk Hydro Grip primer.  I have it secreted away in my unopened products and am trying to forget it is there until I use up a few more of the open products.  I really enjoy it and love the way it holds my makeup in place all day.  I like the YSL primer as well, but it is pricy and I am not entirely certain it is worth the price. I think if I found it on sale, I would repurchase it, but I am not entirely certain I would pay full price for it.  The Tatcha, I would pay full price for.

There are also two unopened samples of primer that I have not tried out yet.  One is the Glam Glow glowStarter Nude Glow and the other is the Hard Candy Hydrating primer.  I will keep both primers until I try them out and get back to you on whether or not I would want to order them in a full size.


Speaking of haven’t tried out, when taking the primers out of the drawer I found the Dr. Brant Luminizing primer.  I honestly can not remember if I tried this out or not so I am putting this in my to be tried pile before I decide.  In general like Dr. Brandt so I have high hopes. 

The Urban Decay Optical illusion Primer just makes me sad.  For a long time it was my go to primer.  It honestly was the only primer I bought for years.  I believe it is now discontinued so I will be using up my travel sized container and then I will let it go into the land of makeup that was.  It was great, I loved it, but it is time to finish it out and let it go.   I actually may put this with the Milk and YSL so that I can work on using it up and sending it on it’s way.

There are two products I am on the fence about.  One is the Ciate London Watermelon Burst Primer and the other is the Too Faced Hangover Primer.  The Ciate London primer I think is a seasonal use primer for me.  I think it is too hydrating in the summertime, but I think my skin likes it better in the winter.  I am holding on to it to try out again this winter because I remember vaguely that I liked it in the winter.  The Too Faced primer I think might also be better in the winter as well.  I think I was more on the fence about it than I was with the Ciate.  So those are both in holding patterns until the weather changes.  Once it grows cooler, I will try them again and make the decision on whether or not to use. 

And finally we come to the getting rid of category.  There are three in this line up.  The first is the Master Prime by Maybelline.  This is a good primer.  The only reason that I am getting rid of it is because it is really, really old and I very expired. It fell to the bottom of the drawer and was not seen until I dragged everything to the light for this declutter.  (This is another reason why I will be using up a few more products before opening new ones). I can see me possibly repurchasing it but for right now it is good bye. 

The second departing product is the Studio Makeup Silk Hydration primer.  I just didn’t like it and found nearly every other product that I used to be better.  I see no reason to keep it around. It is in good enough condition though (as well as being recent enough) that I can pass it on to someone else who may enjoy it more. 

Nice but I am fairly certain I am allergic.

The third product I am passing along is the Vesca Beauty Primer.  I know, I started using it and never got around to reviewing it.  The thing is, I am fairly certain I am somewhat allergic to something in it.  After using it I realized my skin itched.  I didn’t think anything of it, but I am fairly certain that it was the itchy culprit.  It looked lovely under a flat matte foundation but far too shiny under an illuminating one.  It has an almost iridescent look to it and on a light makeup day it worked really well on its own with just a light layer of powder over it.  However lovely it looked, it wasn’t worth the itchy skin so it is being passed on to someone who will love it and hopefully not have the same issues as I did.

So that is my primer line up, the good, the bad, the not yet tried out and pretty much everything in between. While not many products are leaving, I feel really good about going through them and seeing what is in the drawer. because i really enjoy primers, I tend to keep a lot of them around, While I rotate through, a lot can be lost. I am going to concentrate on using up the samples and clearing out the open ones while trying the untested. I do roll through these pretty fast as they are my most used makeup category. Primers, powders and mascaras will always get used. I did have one primer expire on me which is really rare for me and kind of makes me feel disappointed. It also makes me want to do better. And is a reminder that will stop me from opening new products before I have used up some of my older ones. I’m sure I will forget as I sometimes just can’t resist, but hopefully the reminder will help.