Spring beauty launches are here in full swing and there is so much to explore this season! I love that there is literally something for everyone this season whether you want something glowy or matte, sheer or full coverage etc. Most of my new discoveries are from Sephora so I’ve teamed up with them to share my top beauty picks for a spring makeup bag refresh.
I feel like my go-to concealer is always going to be the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Ginger but I still love trying out new formulas. Many of you like the ones that are creamy and lightweight for under the eyes. I’ve recently discovered the Armani Power Fabric High Coverage Stretchable Concealer in 6.5 and think it’s an excellent alternative for a similar blendable feel but with a semi-matte finish. It has a creamy easy to blend feel making it really nice for under the eyes. I am a 6.5 in the Luminous Silk Formula and usually like to match my concealer shade, but you might want to go a shade down if you need extra brightening. The Laura Mercier Flawless Concealer is another great lightweight option that isn’t quite as creamy as the NARS but still blends nicely. I wear 3W in this formula.
Three Go-To Cheek Products
There are a lot of great cheek palettes out this season but I’m really liking what I already own for this spring transition. I find the best natural bronzer to warm up the skin without looking overdone is the Becca Sunlit Bronzer. The shade options go from light to deep so there is something for everyone – even super fair skin girls who feel like they cannot wear any bronzer. I also think for spring anything peachy or pink-gold is universally flattering. You can’t go wrong with something like NARS Orgasm. For a natural cream highlight that won’t look greasy or too sparkly I highly recommend the NARS Super Radiant Booster.
Neutral Eyeshadow Colors
The eyeshadow palette I’ve been most excited about is the Urban Decay Naked Reloaded Palette. It’s a really pretty updated version of their original Naked and I’m 100% obsessed. For something deeper with more mattes opt for the NARS Skin Deep. If you want something simpler for an easy everyday wash of color on the lids I’ve always sworn by the Laura Mercier Caviar Eye Sticks. I often layer 2 colors together and then add a liner for a super quick and easy eye.
Spring Lip Must-Haves
I’m still really loving the Bobbi Brown Crushed Liquid Lip. They’re probably my most reached-for lip products this year. Mixing and layering the colors will give the best effect – I love mixing Lychee Baby with Juicy Date or Peach and Quiet. For a tint and balm in one you really can’t find anything better than the Dior Addict Lip Glow. I’ve loved the classic shades like Coral for years now, but my favorite is the Rose Gold option. If you want to splurge on a tint + oil the Hourglass N. 28 Lip Treatment Oil in Adorn is a really pretty pink rose.
That wraps up my spring makeup bag roundup refresh for the best things I’ve seen so far this year. If you’re shopping at Sephora make sure you take advantage of their Beauty Insider Program! You can accumulate points every time you shop for minis and early access to launches and events throughout the year. As always I’d love to hear what you have in your spring makeup bag right now! Or what you have on your spring wishlist/radar!
I love glowing makeup especially this time of year! There’s nothing quite like combining a good glossy lip with soft shimmering cheeks to brighten up your whole look for the holiday season. Today I’ve partnered with Sephora to share a few glowing holiday makeup looks that I’ve been loving lately. Sephora is truly one of my go-to’s for beauty shopping. They have most of the brands I love and I’ve been a Sephora Beauty Insider for years. The points and perks they offer are among my favorites out of all the beauty rewards programs I’ve signed up for. By popular request I’m doing three looks with each of the three Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizers in Fenty Glow, Diamond Milk and Fussy. So many of you have asked for a review!
Glowing Look 1: Featuring Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb in Fussy
Holiday Look 1 features the new Fussy Gloss Bomb which is a sheer soft pink shimmer. This one is also on the sheer side but has enough color to give a glowing pink tint to the lips. I like this also layered on top of Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Lip Liner. I mix a blended blush + highlighter from Hourglass which adds the perfect amount of glow. For those who haven’t tried the Gloss Bomb it’s a cushiony smooth gloss without the tacky feel. All three colors have a smooth shimmer to them. They are softly scented like a faint cherry.
Glowing Look 2: Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb in Fenty Glow + Stunna Lip Paint Fluid in Uncuffed
Look 2 features original color in Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer in Fenty Glow which is a pretty rose shimmer. It’s fairly sheer on its own but makes for the best layering gloss over any other color. I tried this over the Stunna Lip Paint Longwear Fluid in Uncuffed and it’s one of the best liquid lip products I’ve tried. It does have a matte finish but isn’t dry looking.
Look 3 is with the lightest color Diamond Milk. This adds the prettiest sheen to the lips. It’s also really nice layered over nude lipsticks or peach colors for a more diffused look. Wearing in this look:
As promised I have my Sephora Beauty Insider Event haul and a giveaway! I shopped both online and in store during the days for Rouge savings. If you’re a VIB Member the good news is that this weekend is your weekend to shop the event! You can save 20% off your purchases in store and online from 11/9-11/12 with code VIBBONUS at checkout.
In case you missed my roundup recommendations, you can find my top makeup picks and top skin/hair and body picks detailed with links to previous reviews and swatches where applicable. I had so much on my wishlist that I wanted to stock up on but tried to limit myself to a few newer things that I have been wanting to try. I highly recommend browsing online first even if you’re heading to the store. Some things are online only and there are some better value sets online as well. I haven’t had a chance to try everything but I do have some first impressions on things I have tried.
Three of these things I picked up before the sale. I hauled some Too Faced items because I caved to the hype. I asked many of you on Instagram if you thought these lived up to all the raves and it was a 50/50 split. What I bought:
Too Faced Hangover Replenishing Face Primer – I tried this a couple times and can’t really tell if it makes a difference, it has a pleasant coconut-like scent to it and does have a hydrating feel, it is silicone-free so I’m trying to test it with silicone-free foundations
Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara had really mixed reviews, based on a poll I did on Instagram, a handful told me it was your holy grail, but most did not like it. I tried the Waterproof version and it clumped like crazy, decided to try the original and love the way it looks, but it smudged like CRAZY and I ended up with racoon eyes, even with mascara primers and bases. Did not work for me.
Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb in Diamond Milk is such a pretty white pearl, I bought and tried the original Fenty Glow but couldn’t stand the scent. I decided to try it again in the newer white color (it smells the same) and love the way it looks, undecided about the scent.
Dior Addict Lip Glow in Rose Gold is a Sephora exclusive. I knew I had to have it. I’ve tried it and think it’s pretty. It’s one of the more sparkly ones. It didn’t really shift in color after applying it like the other shades do. Just a lot of sparkle but finish is smooth (no gritty finish from the shimmer).
Skincare Picks Part 1
REN CARE Gift Set has some calming product I’ve been wanting to try including the Evercalm Day Cream, Rescue Mask and Firming Beauty Shot. As we go into the colder dry season my skin is prone to irritation. I have high hopes as the day cream has been highly recommended by so many.
Shiseido Facial Cotton was a restock as the Sephora Collection Cotton Pads were out of stock online when I ordered (they’ve since restocked).
Fresh Rose Toner Mini was something I picked up at checkout. I’m always a sucker for minis and since I love the Rose Floral Toner Spray version decided to try this one.
Drunk Elephant Mega Haul
I hauled quite a bit of Drunk Elephant. I’ve loved their Baby Facial and Protini Polypeptide Cream. I even have Andrew using these! He’s obsessed and told me to restock on those. There are a lot of great sets with minis to try, some are online only. So many of you have asked for more Drunk Elephant reviews so I’m going to put what I purchased to the test and let you know.
A few thoughts on what I’ve tested and what to buy. If you’re interested at all in the Baby Facial, I’d recommend just getting The Big Reveal Kit (online only). The Lippe Balm is a lot nicer than I anticipated! I’m wearing it right now as I type up this post. It’s hydrating, doesn’t really have a scent, feels nice 🙂 My skin loves the B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum. I’m currently recovering from a skin flare up (due to 1 of 3 possible things I’m almost certain I’ve narrowed it down, but need to do some more testing on my face to be sure). The serum instantly relieved redness and soothed my skin.
I’ve tried the cleanser and think it’s nice but need to do more testing. Andrew is not a fan of the tinted sunscreen, but since he doesn’t really seem to be a fan of physical sunscreens it did not surprise me. We have a lot of testing to do, will keep you posted!
Hair Care Picks
Hair care picks include a few more Aquis Waffle Luxe Towels for workouts and so I have extra ones for my hair. I’ve been in search of a hair spray that is just a hair spray. These days there are so many added things in sprays like texture, volume, shine, etc. I think that’s great, but sometimes I just want something simple. The girls in the Sephora store recommended Living Proof so I picked up the Flex Spray in the mini size. A large number of you confirmed on Instagram stories that this is your favorite so I have high hopes!
For tools I ordered the T3 Whirl Trio before the sale but wanted to give it a mention. It’s always nice to be able to save on more expensive things like curling wands. I have dryers and straighteners I love but didn’t have a curling iron. This one has three interchangeable wands without the clips. I’ve played with it for a few weeks now and really love it. It heats up quickly and also comes with a glove to protect your hand so you don’t burn your fingers.
I also ordered a mini packet of the Christophe Robin Shade Variation Care Nutritive Mask with Temporary Coloring in Warm Chestnut. I tried it last night and left it on for only 5 minutes. I’m almost at the 3 week mark post highlights and color is starting to fade. Since my hair was lifted it’s now getting a little lighter. The mask darkened my highlights in a subtle but noticeable way from honey to a slightly chestnut red brown. I think I could have left it on a little longer for a deeper effect but so far I like it! Hair is softer since it is a mask. I used up 1/2 the mini packet since I have a lot of hair and it is long. It’s supposed to last 3-5 washes. I’ll keep you updated on this. I really love all the things I’ve tried from Christophe Robin.
For masks I restocked on the Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair Hair Mask. It also comes in this cute Mystical Minis Revive and Repair duo set if you want to try it in a smaller size. I had a chat with a friend about hair care the other day on shampoos and hair treatments for colored hair. Based on reader recommendations I bought the Oribe Color Safe Shampoo and Conditioner, but many of you also recommended the Kerastase Reflection Chromatique line. My friend swears by the same Kerastase (she said the one in the bright pink tubes) which is available at Sephora now. I wish I had ordered them during the Rouge event days! I might still place an order as I go through shampoo really fast anyways and will probably use up the Oribe very soon.
That wraps up my Sephora haul! I have a never ending list of things I want to try and I’m sure you do too! If you’re shopping the Sephora Beauty Insider Event for VIB, uou can save 20% off your purchases in store and online from 11/9-11/12 with code VIBBONUS. There are exclusions and restrictions on their website so make sure you check the details. You can shop the post here:
I’m hosting another giveaway! I’m going through my beauty vault and picked out some Tom Ford Beauty items including a few harder to find items to giveaway to 1 winner. Open internationally but you must be 18 years or older. Items I’m giving away include brand new full sizes of 7 items including: Tom Ford Waterproof Extreme Mascara, Lip Slick in Spiked Chery, Moisturecore Lipstick in Pipa, Eyeshadow Duo in AW16, Lips + Boys Cooper, Lips + Boys Jagger and Duo Blush in Lavender Lure.
To enter for a chance to win simply enter through the widget below with at least one of the steps.
Giveaway runs through 11/13/2018 11:59 PM EST. One winner will be picked within 48 hours and contacted by e-mail. They must respond within 24 hours or another winner will be selected in their place. Not sponsored or affiliated.
Insiders/ Non-BI members get 15% off 11/16-11/19 with code: BIBONUS
Terms, conditions and exclusions listed here. I tried to narrow my absolute top picks and favorites limiting myself to under 10 per category. There are so many good products available right now, especially with holiday beauty launches. Most of these are products I consider tried and true staples but there are a few newer items I’ve tried recently I think are really worth the splurge. Products that are press samples have a * next to them.
La Mer Luminous Lifting Cushion Foundation is new, I was thrilled to find a match in Warm Bisque, review coming soon but it is amazing and it comes with a refill. I will say I do think there are color gaps, definitely try before you buy. I suspect when I lose my summer tan this color I’ve bought will definitely be too dark. It’s also very dewy in finish but will set well if you finish with a powder. I’ve since re-sampled the Soft Fluid Long Wear Foundation at the counter and really want to buy it, I’m in between Beige and Suede though.
Cover FX Power Play Concealer * is new, full review soon, this really impressed me for a full coverage concealer, it glides onto the skin without caking – if you found the Charlotte Tilbury Magic Away too thick but still wanted something full coverage, I’d recommend you check out the Cover FX option.
Armani Neo-Nude Fusion Powder is the best all over setting pressed glow powder, doesn’t make me too shiny, just adds the perfect amount of even coverage and glow, if you’re oily you should probably opt for an all matte option though. Review here.
La Mer Sheer Pressed Powder is one I have gone through several of Light and Medium, it’s the best sheer natural pressed matte powder I’ve tried, although I will say I think MAC Next to Nothing Pressed is a very close dupe that’s cheaper (but they don’t carry MAC at Sephora).
Urban Decay All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray is my go-to setting spray to set makeup and help make it last longer. It’s available in a number of size options including a mini if you want to try one before splurging on the full size.
Tom Ford Eye Color Quad in Honeymoon is probably my favorite warm neutral, it goes with anything and everything and brightens the face with any cheek color. Nude Dip comes in close second for neutrals.
Pat McGrath anything wins unless you’re not a glitter fan in which case I still think her MTHRSHP Subliminal Platinum Bronze Palette is amazing (review here). I’ll have a review of her Opulence collection posted tomorrow so stay tuned!
Laura Mercier Caviar Eye Sticks are my most worn shadow sticks, I don’t have oily lids so they last all day for me and don’t crease. Rosegold is my holy grail go-to shade I wear the most, followed by Copper.
Natasha Denona makes amazing eyeshadows, the pigment, intensity and complexity of her palettes are really truly beautiful. It’s hard for me to pick one but I think her Camel or 5-Pan in Color Option #2 are great ones.
Brows and Lashes:
Anastasia Brow Wiz * in Medium Brown has been a go-to until I discovered Dior and Hourglass, since getting highlights I’ve felt the need to change my brow color to match a bit more, Taupe and Caramel have been working great for me.
Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat in Pillow Talk is my universal lipliner for days I feel like adding it. Most of the time I skip it, but this color seems to go with all the neutrals I own.
That wraps up my top makeup picks and recommendations for things you can find during the Sephora Beauty Insider Event! Hope this helps if you’re looking for ideas. It’s always nice to have these events each year to help save on new things or to stock up on favorites. I’ll have a haul post soon and will also have another giveaway when I post the haul.
Dates, codes and details, online and in store at Sephora:
Rouge get 20% Off 11/2-11/5 with code: ROUGEBONUS
VIB get 20% off 11/9-11/12 with code: VIBBONUS
Insiders/ Non-BI members get 15% off 11/16-11/19 with code: BIBONUS
Let me know if you hauled anything yet! Or any fun beauty items recently if you’re not shopping the Sephora Beauty Insider Event. Always love hearing about what you end up buying!
Press samples indicated with a * next to the product listings.
The Sephora Holiday Beauty Insider Event starts today for Rouge Members! Sephora Beauty Insider members of different tiers will be able to shop the event on different weekends throughout the next few weeks. If you’re a Rouge Member you will have two weekends to shop. The event dates, details and discount codes per tier below (available both online and in store):
Rouge get 20% Off 10/26-10/29 and 11/2-11/5 with code: ROUGEBONUS
VIB get 20% off 11/9-11/12 with code: VIBBonus
Insiders/ Non-BI members get 15% off 11/16-11/19 with code: BIBONUS
There are some restrictions, the fine print for ROUGE, “20% offer valid for Rouge members on merchandise purchases made from 10/26/18 through 10/29/18 at 11:59pm PT and from 11/2/18 through 11/5/18 at 11:59pm PT in Sephora U.S. stores, Sephora Canada stores, Sephora inside JCPenney stores, and online. Offer not valid on jcp.com. On Friday, 10/26/18 in stores only, Rouge client and one guest of Rouge who is a member of the Beauty Insider program and is present at the time of redemption will be eligible for 20% off all merchandise purchases, along with a sample set free with any merchandise purchase. Sample set offer valid only in Sephora U.S. and Canada stores and Sephora inside JCPenney stores; assortment may vary. Limit of one sample set per Rouge client and one per guest and provided on a first-come basis. Quantities are limited. Not valid on purchases of customizable sets online, through Sephora’s Customer Service. Not valid on Google products. Clients are limited to the purchase of one Dyson item, three Drunk Elephant items, and three Tatcha items per SKU per transaction. Not valid on previous purchases, purchases of gift cards or eGift cards, FLASH, PLAY! by Sephora, gift wrapping, packaging, taxes, or shipping & handling charges. Return of discounted merchandise will be for the price actually paid. Sephora is not responsible for damaged, lost, or stolen promotional barcodes. Promotions have no cash value and may not be altered, sold, or transferred. Rouge status must be attained prior to redemption. No minimum purchase required. Due to heavy demand, Sephora FLASH delivery times cannot be guaranteed for this promotion. Not valid on orders shipping outside the U.S. or Canada. Cannot be used in conjunction with other promotion codes or Rouge Reward. Sephora and JCPenney employees are not eligible for these offers. Offers are subject to change, alteration, or termination by Sephora at its sole discretion at any time.”
I’ve split my recommendations into two posts. The first one today focuses on skincare, hair care and body favorites. So many readers have asked for more hair and skin recommendations over makeup, but that roundup is coming soon! For my makeup gurus I’m working on getting swatches of new NARS, a concealer roundup, Pat McGrath launches, Marc Jacobs Holiday and some Louboutin items up for you ASAP!
As a beauty blogger I put a lot of products to the extensive test, both purchased items and press samples. Skin care is always tricky for me because of the time it takes to see results along with the expectations I have with what “visible results” are. Other things such as seasonal changes, diet, aging, stress, hormones, that time of the month etc. all play a big factor as well. When it comes to testing skin care I recommend trying minis if you’re unsure. Sets are always great to try things first if you’re unsure about recommendations, reviews or ingredients. The one thing I appreciate most about the Sephora site is that they have more ingredients listed for product compared to any other retailer I shop at.
Skincare Face Cleansers
I love having testing different cleansers! Out of all the skincare categories I think I like cleansers and masks the most. My favorites:
Kate Somerville Eradikate Cleanser – If I had to use one face cleanser for the rest of my life, this would be the ONE. It has sulfur which helps with texture issues, remove impurities and keep pores clear. She has different formulas developed for different skin types and needs. I’ve tried every single one and alternate depending on how my skin feels. Her Kate Somerville Exfolikate Cleanser is also excellent.
Farmacy Green Clean Makeup Meltaway Cleansing Balm * is great for those of us who need to double cleanse or remove makeup first but don’t want liquid oil running all over your arms, face and sink. This is my go-to makeup remover for the face and I think it’s better than the Clinique one which is still pretty darn good.
I feel like exfoliation is key to having clear skin, but face scrubs are so personal. What one’s skin can tolerate truly depends on what other items are being used in a routine. If you’re using acids, peels, Vitamin C or retinols on a regular basis your skin sensitivity will be increased significantly and therefore you might not be able to use certain products. For me I keep acids and peels to a minimum (although I do want to try more). I don’t use Vitamin C on a regular basis.
Jack Black Face Buff is Andrew’s favorite. He’s tried all of mine and several other men’s brands but says this is hands down the best and insists it’s better than any of mine.
Tatcha Rice Enzyme Powders aren’t really exfoliator scrubs, but I use them as a cleanser/exfoliator. If you have ultra sensitive skin I think these are great alternatives to face scrubs.
Skincare Moisturizers & Oils
Eve Lom White Brightening Cream is one of the most gentle face moisturizers I’ve tried with ingredients to combat dullness and pigment issues. I haven’t noticed that my sun spots have faded but it does brighten subtly, lift and tone. It calms the skin and makes it smooth. This is my fourth jar!
Kate Somerville Exfolikate Glow Moisturizer is an interesting concept because it has exfoliating ingredients, but doesn’t make you peel like the name implies. It has both glycolic and lactic acids that help with uneven skin texture. It hydrates nicely and adds the perfect amount of moisture.
Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream is one of two Drunk Elephant products I’ve tried and like. It’s suitable for any skin type and I like that it feels nice on the skin – it has the perfect texture and amount of moisture.
Eve Lom Radiance Oil is another one I just started using at night. I had finished my Kiehl’s and L’Occitane favorites and decided to try a few new ones. This one is really hydrating and lasts through the night. I think it’s going to be perfect for winter months ahead as we’re going into the dry season.
Skincare Extras: Masks, Mists, Treatments
Fresh Mask For Miles Set * has four of my favorite Fresh items, Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask, Lotus Youth Preserve Rescue Mask, Sugar Face Polish and Rose Face Mask. I think this one makes the perfect gift for anyone, especially the hard to shop for!
Fresh Rose Floral Toner is one I actually use more as a face mist, it’s alcohol-free and is a nice soothing face mist. I like to apply this before workouts.
Glamglow Supermud is my holy grail clarifying mask, it sucks out impurities, excess oil, unclogs pores.
Drunk Elephant Sukari Baby Facial is a favorite of mine and Andrew’s. We’re going to stock up on this one during the event. It’s a great resurfacing product that really does work over several uses and leaves skin feeling super soft.
Ouai Scalp and Body Scrub is scented in their rose scent. I haven’t used it on the hair, it was just so amazing as a body scrub I kept using it like that until it was all gone. I felt like couldn’t live without it so I bought another jar before the sale started.
REN Atlantic Kelp and Magnesium Salt Scrub is supposed to be an anti-fatigue body scrub. I bought this as I had really sore muscles after starting to lift weights. This made for a nice soak and hydrated the skin without leaving a greasy film.
Supergoop! Everyday Sunscreen with SPF 50 is my holy grail of body sunscreens. It’s easy to reapply, isn’t greasy, doesn’t smell like sunscreen and it’s transparent (no white cast). We’ve also found it effective in intense Florida sunshine.
Jo Malone Colognes are something I never see go on sale, so the event is a great time to save. My two favorites are Wood Sage and Sea Salt and Basil and Neroli. The layering combinations are endless and fun to play around with.
Hair Care Favorites
Everything about my hair care routine is going to change now that I just got highlights. So many of you have given me amazing color-safe shampoo recommendations. Since they recommend not washing your hair for 72 hours after the process I’ve been ok without any options, but I’m going to check them out this weekend. In the meantime items I swear by:
Aquis Lisse Luxe Long Hair Towel is something I discovered this year and really love it! I suddenly found it kept disappearing on me. Andrew did not know it was a hair towel, found it in the clean laundry pile, liked the texture and absorbent quality so much he decided to steal it and use it for during and post-work out sweat. I’ve since ordered a few more in the regular length and Waffle Texture to try and keep one as my own.
Aquis Prime Starter Kit * this is something I just started testing, it’s a four piece set with products and a turban to prevent hair breakage. I’ll have a more detailed review soon, but think it’s excellent.
Moroccanoil Treatment * is a classic multi-tasker, I use it pre-heat and as a finishing product. I also love the way it smells! Been purchasing this for years but one shown was gifted.
IGK Dry Shampoos are among my favorite. They had a limited-edition trio of minis online and I bought a few as I like the smaller size to carry in my totes. Jet Lag is my favorite for my hair, but all three are amazing. No white residue on any of the formulas.
Ouai Hair Oil another favorite for the hair, it’s a nice lightweight oil. Scent is floral and strong and might not be everyone’s cup of tea but I love how it performs.
Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask is my favorite lip treatment I think is going to work for any skin type. They have clear and tinted versions (swatches of Champagne, Lavender, Maple and Smashed here)
Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment Advance Zodiac * is a fun way to gift someone a lip balm that’s a little more personalized if it matches their zodiac sign! These are listed as online only. I received a few in the mail and think they’re so fun. I’ve tried the regular non-limited edition packaging one and think it’s better than the regular lip treatment, although the tinted ones are super fun too.
Dior Addict Lip Glow is something I actually consider more makeup than skincare, but I know some of you consider it skincare! It’s the best color-transforming balm I’ve tried. Perfect for an easy look and nice to reapply. It’s tough to pick just one shade, my favorite is Coral.
To keep on with my tradition with my Sephora Beauty Insider Event roundups, I’m doing another giveaway! I’m giving away one $250 eGift Card to Sephora. Open internationally, 18 years and older. Giveaway is going to run through November 1st. For a chance to win enter by using the steps in the widget below. I’ll select one person via the widget within 48 hours after giveaway ends. Not sponsored or affiliated.
I picked up two of the Bite Beauty French Press Lip Glosses ($22 each for 15 oz/4.3 g, made in Canada) in Salted Caramel and Dirty Chai and liked the colors so much I decided to buy the remaining four. The French Press Lip Glosses are coffee scented sheer glosses that have a cream finish. The coffee scent is actually pleasant to me, it’s like a soft sweet coffee scent and it’s not overpowering or heavy. After testing these for a few days I feel like this is both a hit and miss at the same time. Colors are really amazing, formula is something I think could be better.
There are six shades total, all coffee-inspired ranging from a light beige to deep brown. Colors include:
Flat White is a pale cool cream pink
Vanilla Latte is a creamy beige
Salted Caramel is a medium pink beige
Dirty Chai is a pink rose
French Press is a medium brown
Black Coffee is a deep brown plum
The texture is smooth and not sticky. It feels comfortable and moderately hydrating on the lips. Color-payoff and finish is where I think this gloss could be improved. Both Flat White and Black Coffee settled into lip lines and looked really patchy. Even with extra blending I found I couldn’t make them look right. Vanilla Latte worked better for me and I found it moderately streaky. I could smooth it out by swiping the sponge applicator back and forth. However after around 15 minutes I found it settled into fine lines on my lips. To fix the streaking issue I had to layer with a lip pencil, which seemed to fix it 100%. I tested these with some MAC Lip Pencils and Laura Mercier Lip Pencils and the final result was much better.
The remaining three colors Salted Caramel, Dirty Chai and French Press have a better formula for me. I found they worked well alone on bare lips, but adding a lip pencil improves the overall look and lasting power.
Swatch comparisons to MAC Lipglass in C-Thru, NARS Velvet Lip Glides in Stripped and Swing, Bite Amuse Bouche Liquified Lipstick in Caramelized and Whip, Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipsticks in Honeycomb, Molasses, Chai and Verbena:
All this said, if you look at the customer reviews at Sephora, they’re overwhelmingly positive. For me Salted Caramel and Dirty Chai worked the best and I’m happy with those picks. The rest of the colors are so pretty but I found the formula somewhat lacking due to the settling into fine lines and streaky application. I’m willing to make the extra effort to make the other colors work, but with all the options on the market these days I think a formula should be excellent as is without any extra tweaking required.
A few shots in direct sunlight:
Bottom line I’m conflicted about my thoughts. Colors are great, formula could be a lot better. I can make them work with a little lip liner added. I don’t know that I would say it’s worth the extra effort especially with all the other options out there, but I do know many people like these.
You can find the Bite Beauty French Press Lip Gloss at Sephora and Bite Beauty. If you’re shopping at Sephora don’t forget today is the last day of their Beauty Insider Appreciation Event! You can use promo code once online, but you can use it in stores an unlimited amount of times. Valid in both US and Canada:
Rouge Members: 20% off with code YESROUGE, valid 8/24 through 9/3
VIB Members: 15% off with code YESVIB, valid 8/30 through 9/3
Beauty Insiders: 10% off with code YESINSIDER, valid 8/30 through 9/3
I have a roundup of my Sephora haul picks from the Beauty Insider Appreciation Event for Rouge. I ended up purchasing a little bit from every category for makeup, skincare and hair care. I still have a few things sitting in my online cart but since I did a massive haul I will probably not be purchasing anymore items for the event. I just hauled everything on Friday so I haven’t had time to test everything. Notes and first impressions on the items I have been able to test.
Makeup Base Picks
There were a few new bases I wanted to try out. Foundation shopping kinda stresses me out with the matching process. Some oxidize to different levels and in store lighting isn’t the best, so it can be a little tricky. There are a few other formulas I’ve been meaning to try but testers weren’t available so I’m going to have to guess sight unseen. Ones I did pick up:
beautyblender Bounce Liquid Whip Long Wear Foundation in 3.50 and 3.60, they only had a tester of 3.50 and while it looked good in store it did apply a little on the light side. I bought 3.60 and tried it at home which is a perfect match. I am getting tan though with regular outdoor runs. The next shades up look like a big jump so I may have to mix when I get darker. First impressions are really good, I like the coverage, it lasts all day, it’s not irritating and didn’t oxidize too much. A more detailed review to follow.
It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream Oil-Free Matte in Medium Tan – I’ve yet to try any of the It Cosmetics bases even though they’re extremely popular! Medium looked too light in store but after swatching Medium Tan at home I think it may be too dark. I will report back after I give it a test.
Natasha Denona Transformatte Pore Vanishing Matte Foundation samples in 27WY, 30W and 31W. These oxidized like crazy in store on my hand, but when I tried this on the face at home they did not. I still need to do more testing, but this is a full coverage true matte. I think my best match is 31W which is more yellow/olive.
Swatches below. Also included MAC Studio Fix Fluid in NC30 and NC35 for reference.
Also not a haul item but since some of you have asked, I wanted to share some swatches of the new First Aid Beauty Concealer. It’s available in 7 shades. I received press samples of this formula but haven’t had a chance to test this out. I will keep you posted. I think my shade match is going to be #3.
I have mostly skincare in my online shopping cart, so many things are either online only or not available in my local store. It’s tempting to stock up but for now I picked up:
I’m in need of a curling iron and had the T3 1.25″ Iron on my list. Part of me wants to wait until holiday to see if there are any sets. Part of me wants to take advantage of the discount and buy it now. Decisions, decisions! I hauled 3 items:
I’m always a sucker for a good lip. I actually bought the Fenty Beauty Mattemoiselle Plush Matte Lipsticks before but they were lost in all our moving last year. I repurchased S1ngle and Spanked, both are ultra smooth with full coverage and aren’t dry looking. I need to try more of these! I also picked up two of the Bite Beauty French Press Lip Glosses in Salted Caramel and Dirty Chai. Both are perfect neutrals. I tried Salted Caramel and think it’s the perfect pink beige. I also bought one of the new Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Glosses in Estrella which is so sparkly I don’t recommend it. It’s not chunky, it’s very smooth but the shimmer is a little too much (it was an impulse buy). Last but not least the sparkles got the best of me and I picked up the Pat McGrath Lip Fetish in Gold Astral to try.
That wraps up my Sephora haul! If there are any items you want reviewed first let me know in the comments and I’ll try to prioritize those!
Have you bought anything yet for the Sephora Beauty Insider Appreciation Event? What did you haul? You can use the Sephora Beauty Insider Appreciate promo code once online and unlimited times in store. Valid in both US and Canada, dates for each tier:
Rouge Members: 20% off with code YESROUGE, valid 8/24 through 9/3
VIB Members: 15% off with code YESVIB, valid 8/30 through 9/3
Beauty Insiders: 10% off with code YESINSIDER, valid 8/30 through 9/3
First Aid Beauty concealers provided for review. Other items purchased by me.