Category: Product Review

e.l.f. Haul and Reviews: Metallics and Glitter Galore

I got myself some e.l.f.  That’s a hashtag waiting to happen right there….

I wait until I need my favorite brow pencil.  Bet you can’t tell from this photo which one that is….

And because e.l.f is a super awesome company, they usually have a free shipping sale happening and I don’t have to wait long to get extra savings.  I got free shipping AND half off this order.

Here we go…

I’ve been wanting to try some of the rose gold eyeshadow techniques that I have been seeing.  In order to do that I needed some metallics, and they are all the rage now.

Take for instance these makeup transformer gels.  They are supposed to give you a pop of glitter alone or you can layer it over a powder for extra pigment.  It promises glitter and that’s what’s in it!  When I opened the package, I thought the tube was a little thin.  But a little goes a long way here.  It removed easily and left no spot welded glitter behind.  Here I got rose gold, and golden glitz.

              

Next is the eye primer transformer, matte to metal.  You can take a matte shadow and transform it right on your eyes, and before your eyes, into a metallic look.  I bought Taupe, Silver, and Gold.  I tried it on my arm alone, and was pleasantly surprised to see that it is highly pigmented.  It has a handy doe foot applicator to get precise applications.  It’s fairly non smudging and to remove I had to give a few scrubs on my arm with a baby wipe.  There was NO shimmer left behind.  Impressive.

         

And these eyeshadows…long lasting in soiree, confetti, and toast.  They have a bit of an oily texture to them, but dry when applied.  The soiree was the most pigmented.  These are also smudge proof, were easily removed, and left no shimmer behind.

     

This last photo… is my non-ringing endorsement photo (save for the blush and bronzer which was a repurchase for me.)  There’s no swatch here of that, and I didn’t mention the navy liner, which IS swatched here.  It’s a good smooth, non tugging liner… nothing else to say.

The baked eyeshadow, in pixie, is hard to apply.  I have a baked shadow metallic palette from e.l.f which is essentially the same thing.  I find that the product is hard to pick up on my brush, and then there is a lot of fall out on the face, causing you to have highlight in areas you might not want to be highlighted… like right under your eyes.  You can see here it’s barely visible.  This might make a good highlighting bronzer too.

   

And this velvet matte lipstick called vampy violet is… well… vampy.  You can tell by this photo it looked black.

And you can tell by this photo, it looked nearly black.

It’s a Halloween lip color for me personally.  I’m too pale to pull it off all year.  The application was a bit streaky for me too, less smooth than my other colors in the same product.

Conclusion:  I LOVE my metallic and glitter products, which can actually be used all over the face as a highlighter or even a lip shimmer.  I don’t love the lip color, and I’m indifferent to the baked shadow.

Here’s a look I did with MOSTLY e.l.f products including the Taupe eye primer transformer, and the soiree eyeshadow.  The photo doesn’t do the metallic shadow justice.

Get yourself some e.l.f.!!!

Broadway Colors Lip Cream Review

I ran into Dollar General for some eyelashes.  I don’t normally wear them but I had a special occasion to go to, which I’ll explain a bit later.

Husband and I wanted to go to the next stop on our list of errands, but they hadn’t opened yet, and so by him telling me to “take my time” I ended up buying a few lipsticks.  I know, you can hardly believe it.

The brand is one I am not familiar with, but decided to give it a shot after I was so displeased with the Colour Pop lip creams I purchased a while back.

Today’s review is on the Broadway Colors buttery matte lip cream in the shade, Hello, Sunshine.

The product is very affordable, at only $3.  That’s half the cost of the Colour Pop matte lip creams.  I’ve had a hard time going back to lip creams since then.  Those lip products were very drying, and had a chalky, uneven look.

But… I was killing time and that led to lip color purchases.

First, the product states it has mango, shea and cocoa butter in the formula.  The scent is light mango and refreshing.

The wand has a precision tip, which is quite useful.  I was pleasantly surprised that the product was buildable, unlike others that just wipe off more when you try to fill in that pesky spot.  One coat was all I needed to get a nice pigmented color.

And once you have it wiped on your mouth… well it feels comfortable and easily wearable.  I even forgot I had lipstick on at one point.  A dangerous move, as you can easily end up with it wiped clean across your cheek without a helpful friend to point out your faux pas.

Here’s the product before

And here it is right after lunch, a while later

I liked that the product did not bleed, and would only need a slight touch up after eating.

This one is a winner for only $3 at your local Dollar General!

oh yeah, and what did I need the lashes for?  Well I performed at a wedding, alongside my aerial friends, in the lyra and poured champagne during cocktail hour.  Here’s my makeup look for that day:

Happy Planner Update

Remember my Happy Planner Haul post last year?  I was tempted to get a brand new Happy Planner to start using this August.  But frugal living is the main name of my game, sooooo I did the responsible thing and used the 6 month extender I purchased last year.
So the other day it looked like this:
So I decided it was a great time to get to work on my planner.
My Happy Planner is an 18 month planner (July ’16 to Dec ’17), so I purchased a 6 month extension packet to get two full years out of my planner.  It didn’t seem to make much sense to let a few months go to waste, even though I was tempted to get a fancy and cute new planner with the numbers already all filled in for me.
Since my yard was flooding, I began to meticulously put the stickers onto the planner on the appropriate days, using the calendar on my computer as a guide.  It actually went really fast, and though this is plain, I can really spruce it up with stickers and little bits of artwork.  I want to try to make my planner more artistic, as that idea kind of fell to he wayside as I got busier in my life.

But looking at a colorful planner, makes me, well… happy!  So my plan is to collage it a bit, and doodle, and maybe use it as a “smash” journal to add some ideas.  I wanted to do more memory keeping, since I do love going back to see what was going on a year ago on that day!

Did you know that you could purchase this 6 month extension, and save money getting two years out of your planner?  It had stickers for the tabs, full month calendar view, and the individual days.

Shop online craft stores, and be sure to use your coupons, and competitor coupons if you need to purchase an extension, or a new happy planner.
Update to original post:  I still LOVE this Happy Planner.  It has so much space to write in all my lists and ideas, and plenty of space to jazz it up.  It really held up in my purse with some minimal wear to the edges of the cover.  I take it everywhere!  To lighten the load of taking it everywhere, I took out every month leading up to June ’17.

 

$2 Mascara

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I needed a new mascara and my all time favorite is Loreal’s Double Extend Beauty Tubes.  Because it works so good, I often have the tubes all over the bathroom sink.  So I wanted a quick one to just throw on my lashes and run out the door.  I was using an e.l.f cosmetics mineral mascara that I really liked, but I didn’t have any trips to Target planned, or an order for the internet.
While at Walgreens I wanted to just check their many choices of drugstore mascara, and I was intrigued when I saw Wet n Wild’s mascara for only $1.89.  I’ll try that!
It claims to condition lashes with proteins and is enriched with acai oil.
I’ve used it twice and here’s what I think:
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For under $2 it does the job, but don’t expect to have any huge fake looking lashes.  It doesn’t lengthen, and it doesn’t add volume, but for a natural looking definition, it does the trick.  I think it’s great for everyday.
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It removes easily with my facial cleanser and water, and it stay flexible and lightweight through out the day.  No running, and no flaking.  It really DOES feel like it could condition, but that would be a long term assessment.  I give it a thumbs up!
Remember, this is not a sponsored post, and I purchased this with my own hard earned two $1 bills!  These thoughts are my honest opinion… I’d never lie to you.  🙂

 

Pilot Frixion Erasable Marker Pens Review

I’m a sucker for school supplies and stationery, and anything I can use to play with my planner.  Check out my Happy Planner Review HERE.  My love for my planner extends to my fashion choices.  I select my everyday handbag based upon whether or not my planner will fit.
So when I spotted these erasable markers in Good Housekeeping magazine, I knew I had to give them a shot.  I typically use white out to “erase” my change of plans, appointments, and mistakes.  But that makes my planner look messy 🙁
BUT if I had erasable marker pens in every color, oh how the possibilities could be endless!  I can add to my to do list with zero regret!
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Enter these Pilot Frixion Colors Erasable Marker Pens, that I purchased with my own money, and am not being paid to review by the way.
They are evidently only available at Target (though a quick internet search brought them up elsewhere), and they were $13.49.
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The tips of the markers are nice and precise, so I can actually write in my planner with them and not have it look like a big glob.
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The colors are beautiful and varied:
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But the real question is; do they actually erase?
Well, the marker uses friction to erase the color, and the rubber/ silicone like eraser on the cap doesn’t create any eraser dust.  Though it was a bit of a habit to want to swipe it away, there is no residue.
Moment of truth:
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Ok so it isn’t COMPLETELY erased, and I can see the faint outline of the scribbles left behind.  However, I am extremely impressed with these marker pens.  These have come a long way from the ball point pens in blue or black, that didn’t really erase all that great, and created a lot of eraser debris.
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I love these, and I can’t wait to start using them all over my planner!!!  I think these were created with the adult coloring craze in mind, so now I feel like all I wish I had were some small coloring areas in my Happy Planner!  I love lots of color, so I can’t wait to start adding all these happy colors to my plans!

 

Colour Pop Lipstick Reviews

I finally tried out the Colour Pop lipsticks.  After wanting to test them out for a long time, there was a free shipping code, so I agonized over the colors to choose and placed my order.  Here’s what I thought.
First, I was pretty excited to get a product with a theme, and some fancy packaging.  Since I’m a frugal girlie, I wouldn’t ever drop serious bucks on my self for something as frivolous as lipstick.  I love my drugstore stuff, and love that I can try out colors with low risk and sometimes NO RISK if you buy from a drugstore that allows returns.
Colour Pop had some Hello Kitty lip colors, and the packaging is to die for.  From the minute you get your mailer, with this sparkly design, you feel like you spent a lot more than you did on the product.

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Here’s my honest unpaid review of these colors!
I got 2 of the Hello Kitty colors.  They were on sale for less than $5 a piece.  I purchased Date Mate and Let’s Play
“Date Mate” is a matte bright pink color like my signature pink.  I like it, but not in the matte.  I think it looks too flat on me, and I need to add a little shimmer to the center of the lip.  Here’s the shade in artificial and day light:
I suggest using a lip liner… here I did not.  It helps to get the line nice and straight.  (Here is it not.)  On a side note… this lipstick broke pretty quickly.  The cap is a snap on and I pulled it off and out flew the lipstick tube!  It’s very pigmented, as are all the colors, so it required some scrubbing to get it off the bathroom sink and counter.  Be careful around fabrics, I’m sure it would stain that very quickly!
The other Hello Kitty color is “Let’s Play.”  It’s a pretty red with glitter flecks inside. Same sale, under $5.
Here you can see the gold glitter left behind when the color is removed.
The next color I tried was my least favorite.  I thought the color was going to be way different.

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Zipper was $6 and is a matte liquid lip color.  Here is the color as shown on the website:

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Here is it on my lips:
As you can see, the daylight photo is vastly different than the artificial light photo.  But, I can’t seem to get the product to apply evenly on my lips at all.  The above is a single coat.  It went on streaky for me, and if you touch your lips together, it gets sticky and the coverage gets worse.  I wish I had a matching lip liner, because this color is very easy to go outside the lines when you have only a doe foot applicator to work with.  I noticed the color is kind of separating and pulling away from the tube….
Here I did a second coat to try to even out the color:
This color is definitely NOT user friendly, and do not apply this quickly in a crowded bathroom somewhere.  A steady hand is a must, time to fix it, makeup remover on a cotton swab, etc.  I’m not too crazy about how this feels on my lips either.  When I smiled, the lip color cracked and my lip lines were clearly visible.  Next time I might try to start in the center of the lip, so the color is not concentrated at the lip line, but this one is my least favorite.  When wiping it off with a tissue the color rolls off, and none of the other liquid colors do this.
The next color is also a matte lip color called “More Better.”  ($6)

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This one, though it seems to be the same type of lip color as Zipper, is “more better” in the user friendly factor.  I only require one coat, and the color seems to go on more evenly.  I didn’t need to keep going over the streaks which causes even more uneven application.  One coat and I was done.  The formula seems less heavy to me, and less sticky.  You can see how I wiped it off to show you how pigmented the color is.
I tried this one out for a long day of teaching dance.  By about hour 6, the color had begun to feather around my lip line.  I couldn’t just wipe it off, so I forged onward throughout the night, but it made me look like I had severe chapped lips and irritation.
The last liquid color I got was called “3-Way.”  ($6)

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It’s a metallic lip.  I like this one the best for a dramatic night.  I wore it performing aerial dance at a grand opening of a business.  It stood up through the night.  It’s easier to apply, feels as light as the “More Better” and is just as pigmented.  It takes a few swipes to get the color even, much like metallic nail color takes a few swipes to get it opaque, but is build-able, unlike “Zipper.”
The third photo shows the gold glitter left behind when the color is wiped off.
Overall, I like the traditional lip stick colors more than the liquid lip colors.  I just really feel like that Zipper color is a different formula altogether.  It feels different going on and coming off the lips.  I would try Color Pop again, but I’d be more inclined to try the traditional lip sticks that I can handle easier.  The liquid lip colors are very much like any “stay proof” liquid color, except it feels like there should be a seal or a gloss provided to go on top of the pigment.
Primer:  I did purchase the primer, and though the website doesn’t say anything about needing it, I believe the colors went on much more smoothly with the primer…..except that Zipper color 🙁
So that’s my beauty review of the Colour Pop lip sticks.
I’d love to hear if you have tried any of the different formulas or colors and if so what is your favorite?
Until next time beauties!

 

Happy Planner Haul

20160805_151904_resizedAwhile back I posted this Happy Planner haul on my Instagram account, (if you’re following me, you’re totally awesome and I thank ya very much.  If you’re not… why aren’t you!?)  I also hinted at a big announcement for me.  I’ve been bursting at the seams to tell you all, but I was waiting till it actually happened.  And it’s happening…..
But I’m not going to tell you just yet.
I’m making sure that it will actually happen….

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But I’m telling ya that I’m going to be pretty busy for a few months, and I needed a great planning system.

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A Happy Planning system!
This is the Happy Planner…
I also bought a ton of frugal and fun supplies to go with it.
It might have been an excuse to buy cute stickers….
All of these stickers were $1 per sheet!
I like my planner for memory keeping too, so I wanted to snazzy it up.

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I’m really excited to continue to plan, craft and decorate in it.

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Here’s what I love about the Happy Planner Concept:
  1. The Planner is Happy!  With designer style pages, and cohesive quirky elements, you can customize this planner anyway you like.  You can add stickers, and washi tape, and lots of Happy Planner designated items that are in the line.  Not to mention that a quick trip to Etsy proved to have a zillion options for add ons, add ins, stickers, and anything else you might want.
  2. There’s a ton of room for the actual planning… plus decorating.
  3. The pages come in and out easily with this awesome disc binding system:20160805_151945_resized
4.  I purchased the 6 month extension pack so I can get a solid 2 years out of this planner.  There are wedding, fitness, and recipe extension packs too!
I think if you can make your planning system fun, and personal, you might have a lot more fun planning out your days!
If you have a Happy Planner or another planner system, I’d love to see how you make your personal planner happy!

Sealed with a Kiss, Lipstick Fixative review

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Awhile back I was at Sally Beauty Supply, and I bought this on an impulse.  I asked the woman working if it really worked, kind of with a skeptic tone.  She said she didn’t know first hand but a woman comes in all the time to buy 5 in one visit.  Well, with that I spent about $5 on this product and took it home.

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I really hadn’t thought about it since my normal lipstick stays so well.  But, (and if you’re a lipstick wearer you know what I’m talking about here) sometimes it’s not always easy thinking into the future about where and what you might eat if you’re going to a restaurant.
The other day I decided to try this out on a random trip shopping and errands… and we just so happened to end up at a burger place.. which was a great test to this product.
And I’m sad to say… it was a flop.  But you know I’m always willing to give something a second shot, and if it works next time… I’ll be sure to update you.
But here’s my experience:
The product claims to seal and fix your lipstick, and can prevent feathering if applied under the lipcolor.  I usually hate this because I feel like it’s going to transfer to the lipstick itself.
So I decided to try it by sealing it over top my lip color.
Problem number one:  I couldn’t actually get the roller ball to start rolling.  So to get the product out, I had to squeeze it onto my finger.

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I did try to roll it onto my lips, and I saw a flaw right off the bat.
Problem number 2:  The color from my lipstick would have rolled into the fixative if the ball was actually rolling.  But the product is very liquid so I just squeezed some out and wiped and dabbed it gently onto the entire lip and lip line.
It started to get tacky and dry quickly, but it never really dried fully… so that sticky tacky feeling stayed with me the entire day.
Problem number 3:  Which meant my hair kept sticking to it…. and who knows what else.
I didn’t check myself in the mirror before our impromptu trip to grab lunch at the burger place.  Before I dug in, I blotted my lips onto the napkin and, problem number 4; all of the lip color just came right off as if there was no fixative on at all.  I ended up wiping all of it off very easily, with no rubbing or excessive wiping.
Overall it’s a flop… and there was no point in taking photos.  I’m really sad because it would have been awesome if this worked.
And on that note, if anyone DOES have a rave review on a lipstick fixative, I’d love to know so I can give that one a shot!

 

 

Michael Todd Soniclear Review Follow Up

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A long while back on my youtube channel I filmed a Michael Todd Soniclear Elite Facial Cleansing Brush Unboxing.  You can find it here.  I have since been able to use the brush consistently for several months and can give you my honest review.  Once again, this is a review on my own accord, and is unsolicited.  I have not been paid for this review.
Pros
  1.  I can 100% say that the Michael Todd is equal to the effectiveness of the Clarisonic.  The bristles in the brush may be a bit more sturdy, and less soft.  But this can easily be adjusted with the high or low level of the sonic vibration.  I love that I have used the brush for several months, and there is no staining on the brush head, and seems to stay cleaner for longer.
  2. It has the c boost:  Which if I’m honest, I’ve not been using regularly.  When I do use it though, it’s a nice gentle massage for my face, and sort of feels like it could be increasing circulation.  Blood flow does equal better skin quality, so maybe… just maybe, there might be something to that c boost feature.
  3. No breakouts when used regularly, just like the Clarisonic.
  4. So much more affordable for the actual cleansing brush, AND the brush heads.  They recommend changing them every 6 months, and the brush heads are a tad less expensive overall.  Up to $108 per year for Clarisonic brush head vs up to $50 for Soniclear.
Cons
  1.  No protective outer immobile bristles.  Clarisonic has a smaller movable area for the brush head because there is a circle of outer layer bristles that protects from splashing.  Because the Soniclear doesn’t have this feature, there is a certain degree of splashing and spray onto the bathroom mirror.. or my husband that might be brushing his teeth standing right next to me.  It’s a small price to pay for not paying a large price…. see what I did there?
  2. Another small silly con.  If you just so happen to power off the unit when it’s ready to beep to signal you to move to another facial area… you might have the machine screaming at you.  It could just be mine, but this has happened more than a few times to me.  I guess my timing is impeccable.  The first time it happened I panicked because, well it’s not like I can take out the battery to get it to stop making that horrible high pitched screaming noise!  But I resolved it quickly by turning it back on and off again.
And that’s about it!  Overall, I love the Michael Todd Soniclear Elite Facial Cleansing Brush!  I hope in the future that the company will create some other brush heads.  My favorite was the deep pore cleansing brush head from Clarisonic, and I’d love that feature for my Soniclear.    The cons aren’t really that earth shattering to keep me from purchasing this over the Clarisonic, and overall I’m glad I took the chance on this more affordable option.
By the way… if you like these honest beauty reviews, sign up for the Nicolyndime club here.  You’ll get a free drugstore skincare guide for all skin types, and an exclusive invitation to my facebook group too.

90’s Inspired Nails

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The time was the 90’s.  The movie was Clueless.  And the nail polish launched this nontraditional hue to the forefront.  A baby blue polish was on “Cher” and so that same color flooded all of the pre teen stores of the time.  This color reminds me of going to the Limited too…. and buying my first pair of flared jeans.  Those trips were fun, as I thought about how cool and fashionable I’d be in high school.
Alas, I was so not a “cool kid” in high school, but I am now unafraid of my out of the box fashion choices.
I love this Wet n Wild nail polish in “putting on airs” because it reminds me of that Hard Candy baby blue nail polish.
I first hated it when I started putting it on… but as soon as I dried, I LOVE IT!

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The formula also was self leveling, had good coverage, and wasn’t all thick and hard to work with.  Plus it’s Wet n Wild… a brand that’s been around since before my time, and I love them!!!
Enjoy this flashback to the 90’s.