The Makeup Bag: December 31st, 2020

The makeup bag used December 26th – 31st, 2020

Ah, the makeup bag for the week after Christmas.  Always a low key affair until you get to the actual New Year’s eve.  This year it was an interesting bag.  I used last week’s products for my holiday calls and then swapped out the makeup bag.  In addition I will be using a completely separate New Year’s eve Makeup bag to get ready for my sparkly stay at home night.

But that is another story.

Which means that this week’s makeup bag was both easy and low key. I started off with the Yensa BC Foundation.  It is from their Super 8 collection and I have to say I have had really good luck with that entire collection. 

The BC Foundation is a cross between a BB Cream and A CC cream and I have to say, It goes on easily and just melts into the skin for a low key look that is my skin but better.  I’m using a sample and I think I might be able to get one more week out of the sample tube.  It might be pushing it so I think what I am going to do is keep it in next week’s makeup bag to use it up and have another product on standby for when this does run out.  I suspect it will run out sometime mid-week next week.  However it is on the products to pick up again list, so it will be returning once I’ve whittled down some of my foundation products.

The number of products in the drawer tends to make me nervous about products expiring before I can use them.  So I am working through open products.  Actually the last time I opened the drawer (to get this week’s product out) the drawer was thinning out a bit.  I think because I used up and got rid of all of many of the sample sizes it doesn’t seem as frighteningly packed.

The primer I used with my foundation this week was an old favorite.  It is the Urban Decay Optical Illusion Primer. I remember trying this primer when it first came out and falling in love with it.  My love affair has lasted and even though it isn’t my one and only it still ranks high on my list of primers. I hadn’t tried it in a while so last time I was in Ulta I picked up a travel sized tube to see if I still liked it.  And yeah, I do. I’ll keep the travel size in my dressing table rotation until it is through and then pick up a full size.

My bronzer this week was the NARS Laguna Bronzer.  It is a sample size that is finally starting to get a dent in the center of the pan.  I refuse to let myself buy a full size until I use up the sample.  I have had this sample a while though as it is small enough that it tends to slip to the bottom of the drawer.  I have decided though that it will be getting up, so it will be rotated in with increasing frequency until it does get used up.

Another product that I tend to forget about is the sample sized Tarte Blush in the shade Quirky.  I just somehow never remember to pick it up. I really like the blush formula and the shade lends a really nice soft flush to the cheeks which isn’t over the top. It really works well with the natural skin look of the Yensa Foundation.

Elf and MAC

And then we have powders.  Oh my darlings do we have powders.  First there is the loose e.l.f HD translucent powder.  It is a really good setting powder.  It can leave a little bit of white in the crevices of the nose, but a quick dab with my lovely Huda Beauty sponge takes care of that.  I really like the flat pointed section for getting into tight spots on the face. I am always amazed at how useful that one flat side actually is. I think regardless of brand that is the shape I will look for.  And soon I will have to look for another makeup sponge as mine is sadly looking like it needs to be replaced.  

However I really do like the e.l.f. HD setting powder.

As for pressed powder, my dearest No 7 made it through most of the week.  Sadly it will not make it to the new year.  It gave its all and I salute it.  I will also repurchase it. Repeatedly. I am going to try to not pick it up right away so that I can use some other powders in my dressing table. 

But this is one of my favorite formulas for pressed powders and at some point it will return.  For now we have to bid it a fond farewell and let it at least have the distinction of being the first product placed in the January 2021 Empties bin.

Because I wasn’t entirely sure my No.7 would make it through the week I pulled out the sample size of the MAC Studio Fix powder. It is the tiniest little pan so it is kind of a pain to work with but the product itself is really nice.  I really forgot how much I liked MAC products.  I always remember their lipsticks but somehow tend to forget about their powders and eyeshadows.  I really enjoy both actually I just haven’t picked them up in a while. I may need to remedy that in 2021.

I did actually use a MAC Satin Lip in the shade Mocha this week.  I like the Satin Formula and found it comfortable to wear.  The color was a little light for me so I deepened it with Huda Beauty’s Lip Contour in Trophy Wife.  It was a nice blend of colors and I enjoyed the combo this week.  When I wasn’t wearing that combo I reached for my e.l.f. Sheer Slick in Black Cherry

T to B: MAC, MAC blended with Huda, Elf, Huda lip liner on it’s own

Because I seemed to have both a samples theme and a MAC theme going I added the MAC Strobe Cream sample I received in my Birchbox Advent Calendar.  I know several people put it all over the face as an all over glow, but I think everyone has realized that isn’t really my thing.  The strobe cream did make a really excellent and subtle liquid highlighter this week.  Since I was going for a more subtly look it really suited me well.  This is another product that I need to remember I have and to use it more often.

My brows were taken care of my wet ‘n wild Ultimate brow kit this week.  As usual I used my own brush instead of the provided one and stuck with the one lighter shade in the kit.  The darker one I still need to remember to use, but it is too dark from my brows so I will have to work out something  in maybe the shadow eyeliner department.  If you remember my initial use of the kit you may recall that while I really love the light brown brow powder, I despise the cream highlight in the kit.  So this week I ignored it and pretended it was not there.

For my mascara I went with the Beauty for Real Mascara again this week.  While I really like the mascara it wasn’t actually my intention to use it, I simply forgot to switch it out.  Using it a second week wasn’t a hardship though.  It is a really good formula.  However I will remember to exchange it for another in the following week.

Which finally brings us to the eyeshadow for the week.  This week I grabbed the doughnut shaped Maple Glazed palette from I heart Revolution.  I know it looks like a toy, but I really like this palette.  It is quick and easy to use and the shadows are easy to use and work well.  To be honest I mostly used the darker brown accented with the bronzy shade this week. It was quick and easy and I didn’t have to worry about it much.  I liked the way it looked and will happily reach for this palette again. 

I don’t know if the doughnut series is still available (I picked mine up at Ulta a while back) but every time I use it I find myself wanting to pick up the other doughnut palettes in the line.  It is just very well set up and easy to use.  Plus, this is one of my favorite travel palettes as the puffy doughnut on top pretty much insures the shadows won’t break. Surprisingly we have reached the end of the Makeup bag.  There were no real surprises this week.  I know some of you are thinking, ‘weren’t you trying a new setting spray?  And yes I was.  However, I wanted a bit more time with it before I formed an opinion. So I will use the Pore Professional Priming spray from Benefit for another week and then next week post a full review as well as put it in my Makeup Bag post.  I just didn’t think I had long enough to sort out how I felt about it to put it down. So there we have it my darlings, this week’s makeup bag.  But stand by, the New Year’s edition is about to arrive in 10…9…8…7…


The Make Up Bag: June 5th, 2020

The Makeup Bag, used May 30th – June 5th

Welcome once again to The Make Up bag. I had a really good line up this week.  If you read my foundation post yesterday then you know the first item this week was a replacement.  My plan was to use a Nars Foundation however it was just a little too pale for my current skin tone so I replaced it with the Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless foundation instead.  I really enjoyed using it and am quite sad that it is leaving the makeup bag this week so another product can take it’s turn in the rotation.  I really liked it and look forward to seeing it again.

Also covered in a separate post was the Hello, Charmer eyeshadow palette from BoxyCharm.  It was the palette I used throughout the week.  There were some highs and some lows but overall it was a really fun palette to use.

My primer this week was the NYX Professional Makeup Pore Filler Primer.  I really like this primer.  It has a light tint to it and glides on to the skin like silk. It does a fantastic job filling pores and with the Maybelline foundation it made my skin look fantastic. 

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Even without my foundation on the primer made my skin look great. It is actually one of my most used primers.  A little goes a long way, which is why I wasn’t overly concerned by how light it felt when I added it to my make up bag last week.  I ended up having just enough product left in the tube to last the week, although luckily I had one day where I tested the foundation without primer otherwise I probably wouldn’t have had enough.  Regardless, the tube is now empty and will be relegated to the empties bin.  Next week another primer will take it’s place but eventually I will be replacing this primer.  It is a good one to have on hand for everyday use.

This week I also used the Elf Camo concealer.  It is an excellent concealer that doesn’t crease under my eyes.  It also worked as an wonderful  eyelid primer.  It is one that I always like to keep on hand.  It is actually the concealer by which I judge other concealers.  If you are a concealer, you are either as good as or not as good as the Elf Camo concealer.

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It will be rotating out this week and I will not be rotating another concealer in to take it’s place.  Instead, next week I am going to attempt to practice a makeup trick I’ve been hearing about for a while.  It is the using powder after moisturizer and before foundation trick. I’ve watched a lot of back and forth about it so I am going to try it this week. The claim is not only that it helps foundation look better and stay on longer but that you don’t need concealer if you don’t have huge under eye circles. I’ll post my thoughts on that after I try it (along with links to the You Tubers who inspired my attempt to try it).

So instead of a new concealer I will be using the Pretty Vulgar eyelid primer that came in May’s BoxyCharm for my eyelids and I will be rotating in one loose powder and one pressed powder.

That’s right, a new pressed powder. I have been working on finishing up the Rimmel Stay Matte pressed powder and I have to say that on Wednesday I thought I was going to have at least one more week with the Rimmel.  It is no hardship as I really like the powder.

But Thursday morning I accidentally knocked it into the sink and it shattered. It was really a thin little wafer of product. It also became spattered with toothpaste residue.

Yeah, so alas we must part and a new product will take it’s place.  I have to say I feel oddly nervous.  My two standard pressed powders are the Rimmel Stay matte and the Elf Translucent.  I finished up the ELF a few weeks ago and decided not to replace it so I could try new products.  I didn’t worry because I still had the Rimmel.  Now it is gone so I’m working without a net this week.  I have no familiar standby should something go wrong. I know it sounds silly, but I really can’t remember when I didn’t have a Rimmel compact in my make up drawer. Even when I didn’t wear any products other than powder, mascara and lip gloss, I always had the Rimmel around. It feels really strange to let it go. I am sure at some point it will return.

But as we move on we come to bronzer.  This week I used the Too Faced Chocolate Gold Bronzer.  It too joined my collection via Boxy Charm and while I have used other bronzers by Too Faced and liked them I was a little hesitant about the shimmer.  To be honest, it wasn’t really noticeable. 

That may just be my skin tone, as gold tones really work well with me.  It added a little depth to the color, but it wasn’t highlight adjacent, which is what I was worried about. It could be a little dark when first applied but it blended out well and was an excellent product to use.  I really liked this and look forward to using it again.  I also have to say, I really love the sleek packaging of the compact as well as the yummy chocolate scent. It definitely stays in rotation.

This week I got to use one of my favorite blushes and that is the Benefit Gold Rush Blush.  It too has a bit of a gold twinkle too it and I was hesitant about it, but it is an excellent color on me and it blends really well.  I am sad to see it rotate out at the end of the week, but needless to say, it will be returning and it will be returning often. I really need to take advantage of their current sale and maybe try a different blush from them, but I really like this one so chances are I’ll just buy a backup. That’s not a bad thing of course. Although if the Gold Rush is part of a blush palette I might try that instead. I could get my favorite AND try something new. I know, you probably didn’t need my inner dialogue as I talk myself into buying blush, so we will move on to Highlighter (and post the sale link in case I’m not the only one eyeballing it.)

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This week I used the Steve Laurant Jelly highlighter as my highlighter of the week.  It was an interesting product to use. It took me a little while to play with it and I have to say the trick is to use your finger to apply it and not a brush.  If you use a brush you will either blend it in too much so it disappears or you will end up with a blinding stipe that looks like you are attempting to be some sort of photonegative of an old school football player. (Do they still use the black stripes under their eyes?)

Using your finger is the way to go with this.  Apply it and the gently blend with the fingertips and it is a stunning highlighter that is not too much. It is just enough for everyday wear.  If you are a blinding highlight sort of person, just don’t blend it in as much.  Either way, use your finger, not a brush. It took me a few days to come to terms with this highlighter, but now, I think we are friends.  I will be keeping this in rotation.  I won’t know for sure if I would buy it again until I use more of the product.  I think it’s going to be one of those decisions I make once I think I’m running out of it, which could take a while because its a large pan. I really like the gold tint of it, but I am not certain I would care for a silvery or pink shade. But as it is a relatively full product, I have plenty of time to decide.

With regards to lips, I had three products to choose from this week.  I kept the Ciate Watermelon lip oil around because I liked it and wanted to have a lip oil around.  It has a slight watermelon taste to it and a more pronounced scent.  It is very summery and it really helps hydrate my lips after time in the sun. I have to say in general, I have really been impressed with Ciate products lately.

I also had a sample size of the Smashbox Liquid lipstick in the shade Stepping Out.  It is an excellent nude shade that on me at least doesn’t make my lips disappear into the skin. (it is the top swatch on my hand photo) I like the formula as well.  It dries down so that after about five minutes it stops leaving lip prints all over my coffee cup, but it never dries down all the way so my lips never felt parched.  Oddly enough with all my hand washing on the day I took a photo of this swatch at the end of the day I still had to use a make up remover to remove the remnants from my hand. It has great longevity and is very comfortable to wear.  It is however, the end of this samples life cycle.  There are only the dim traces of product left on the insides of the tube.  It will be journeying to the empties bin.  However, I do like the color and the formula enough that I will be looking at Smashbox and picking up several shades in the future.

Because I highly doubted that the Smashbox sample would last the week I added a second sample size lipstick to my make up bag and that was the Bite bullet lipstick in the shade Rhubarb. (lower swatch on the above hand swatch photo) It is a comfortable lipstick to wear.  It doesn’t dry down and will leave lip prints on drinks, but it doesn’t really smudge or get on your teeth.  It doesn’t make your lips feel dry or feel waxy and it has a pleasant scent.

To be honest, it actually smells a little bit like the rhubarb and strawberry jam my grandmother used to make.  There is no pronounced strawberry, but there is something sweet tempering the scent of tart rhubarb.  On the days I wore this I needed to reapply the lipstick after lunch, but I am okay with that given that it is a more traditional lipstick.

Since this sample size is not yet spent, it will be going back in rotation.  As the color is a nice reddish shade that I can wear with almost anything, I suspect that once this sample is used up, I will be purchasing a full size.  I just want to use the sample first to see if there are any hitches before I buy.  If there aren’t I suspect I will be purchasing several shades as I really do like the lipstick formula.  It actually shouldn’t come as a big surprise to me that I like it as I have been using their products for a while.  I used to get family in Canada to send down a care package of things I couldn’t get here and I have been using their Agave lip mask nearly nightly for the past few months as well.

Next in my line of products I have the Doucce Punk Volumizer mascara. It is a decent mascara.  It doesn’t flake off and lasts throughout the day.  It doesn’t clump or stick either. It has a big fluffy brush and if you work with it, the lashes to look lengthened.  You just really have to work with it. 

If you want volume, you are going to need to make at least two passess.  It is one of those products that qualifies as fine but a little disappointing.  I think the disappointment comes from the fact that volumizing is in its name.  It is something I will be using up, because there is nothing wrong with it, but this is not a mascara I will repurchase. There are other products I like much better. But it is decent enough to keep in rotation and use up.

The Skone tattooed waterproof eyeliner also falls into this category.  It is good, it works well, but it isn’t as smooth an application as my Eyeko so I probably wouldn’t repurchase it.  I will keep it in rotation though until it is used up. 

Actually I don’t like to open a lot of calligraphy pen eyeliners at one time so I only have two open at the moment (this and the Eyeko Fat Eyeliner) so I will be alternating between them for a while.  At least as far as the pen style goes, I have a couple of pencil style ones I use as well, but they don’t dry out like the pens so it is less of an issue.

Next we have the wet ‘n wild ultimate brow kit in ash brown.  I picked this up when I picked up the foundation and I have to say I really had no expectations.  I just thought it would be interesting to try.  It comes with a set of tweezers and a small brush.  The tweezers are tiny but okay, the brush is fine.  I could see both being handy if you were traveling with this. 

I like that behind the tools is a small mirror for an up close view, although from the brush my mirror is already too smudged to be of use. There are three products.  Two powders, one darker one lighter and one cream highlighting pan. The dark powder is far too dark for my eyebrows but the lighter shade works perfectly for me and I did enjoy using it. 

The cream is utterly pointless.  It is hard to use and not very effective.  Plus, it soaks up every stray molecule of powder that comes its way so you have to scrape the top clean before each use.  I like the idea, but the function was a fail.  I think that what I am going to do this week is keep this product around, use the powder and add a stick contour highlighter to go with it. I know it defeats the purpose of the kit, but I want to see how I feel about the brow powder when I don’t have to think about using the contour.  I suspect I will like it a lot better, which will help me to know should I find that wet n’ wild sells just the powder outside of the kit. It is a very reasonably priced product so I think it would be worth knowing.  So a second week for the kit and a determination of possible repurchasing to follow.

This leads us to the final Item in this week’s bag and that is the I heart Revolution Fixing Spray in the scent Peaches and Cream. What can I say?  The product is a winner.  It smells nice, it works fantastic and not only am I keeping it out for another week but I am contemplating picking it up in several more scents.  It is a great product and will remain in the bag for a second week.



So those were the products I used this past week, the good, the bad, the frustrating and the pleasurable.

Next Week’s selections for the Make Up Bag

For the upcoming week, the Revolution Fixing Spray will stay as will the wet ‘n wild brow kit. Joining it will be the Billion Dollar Brows Highlight and contour stick. I chose the ELF Bite sized palette in Cream and sugar and added a couple of KVD Beauty single shadows to extend it a little, as well as a KVD Beauty eyeliner. I’ll be using a Fenty Beauty cream Highlighter and a trestique cream bronzer For my lips I’ve got the Luna by Luna lip oil, Thrive cosmetics lip gloss and Maybelline Ink crayon to try. 

I’ll also be using an Hourglass blush, Illamasqua primer, Kevyn Aucoin mascara and an Anastasia Beverly Hills Stick Foundation. Finally, for powders I will be using a Ciate loose setting powder and trying out a No. 7 pressed powder as well. A few of the products I have tried before, the Tristique is actually on my permanent favorites list and is actually close to being used up.  Most of the products I chose this week are either entirely new to me or things I’ve only tried once or twice before. It should make it an interesting week.


Blinc Tubing Mascara