Influenster Mary Kay Voxbox

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I actually received this a few days ago but I’m just getting to it now. A few weeks ago I was asked to complete a quiz to receive a Voxbox from Influenster and I was selected to receive this box for review. I received 5 items which included: (Retail Price)

-Mary Kay Lash Love Lengthening Mascara in I Black ($15.00)
-Mary Kay Cream Eye Color/Concealer Brush ($10.00)
-Mary Kay Lash Primer ($15.00)
-Mary Kay Cream Eye Color in Violet Storm ($22.00)
-Mary Kay True Dimensions Lip Stick in Pink Cherie ($18.00)

So let me start off by explaining the brand. I don’t have a Mary Kay lady on speed dial or anything, a few years ago I did know this customer from working at the dealership who often dropped off catalogs and the like, I maybe have been to one Mary Kay party a long time ago. Like 10 years ago, when I really didn’t care too much about makeup, well I can’t say I didn’t care but it seemed to be geared towards older ladies. I think that’s the image a lot of people get. It was like going to a Tupperware party but for makeup that was way too expensive. Quite frankly the prices of these products are a good surprise for me, but maybe it’s because I am older and willing to pay more for my makeup now than I was when I was in my teens. Overall I like these products, even if the lip stick wasn’t exactly a complimentary shade to me.

Click more for my individual product reviews.
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Girl’s Night & Haul

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So it’s been a crazy new year thus far and I haven’t had a chance to hang out with my buddy Lindsey so I invited her out tonight since I had 2 straight days off! Since Lindsey had to work I picked her up at work and we headed over to Elephant Bar. I’ve never been, but the menu looked decent. Lindsey had the Teriyaki Chicken and I had the Kona BBQ combo which had ribs and chicken. I have to say it was pretty delicious and very affordable. I was shocked when Lindsey said she’d never had Creme Brullee so we had to split one of those for dessert.

After dinner we went to Sunrise Mall, we always do the same thing but I always manage to get lost. We parked over by JC Penney’s because Sunrise doesn’t have an actual Sephora in the store so we had to settle for the one at JC Penney’s. We browsed for a bit and unfortunately the lady that helped us last time who was so awesome wasn’t working and we didn’t really get any help. I was going to try some foundations but the lack of service was a bit off putting so I just bought more of the Urban Decay All Nighter Spray. Lindsey purchased more mascara since that’s her favorite makeup item.

After that I had to stop at Bath & Body Works to pick up some of those little anti bacterial mini things for my brother. They were on sale 5 for $5, and I picked up one of the new Sweetheart Scents Sprays for $8 (Regular Price $12!). We had alot better service here from Chris and Dani. They’re definitely getting a survey from both Lindsey and I.

The last stop of the day was Victoria’s Secret. Now I rarely buy any clothes from Victoria’s Secret, if I do I get their pajamas or their sweaters but I do love their fragrances and I wanted to try some of their makeup. I was hoping they’d have some in their store and luckily they did. They were having a sale so I picked up a few of their makeup items to try, 2 of their body sprays, a setting spray and a little combo pack. Plus I received a trio of makeup bags for free!

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Etsy: Performance Colors Set

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Well hello there! Long time no see, or hear. Today I’m gonna share my latest mini haul with you and it’s primarily samples from a seller on Etsy called Performance Colors. I ordered this about a week ago and I’m so excited to try these items out. I purchased these all on my own so I wasn’t asked to review these or anything.

I was just perusing Etsy one night and stumbled upon the Lid Primer and was intrigued so I decided to give it a shot. A full size lid primer shadow base was $5.00 for 2.8 ml so it was a great deal, especially if you use primer sparingly like I do. I also purchased a sample set (3 samples) of the foundation and the concealer for those darn under eye circles I have. I actually received 4 of the foundation samples including the medium tone. Shipping times and rates were reasonable and I received my items in my mailbox today. I was pleasantly surprised to see a lovely note from Tiffany letting me know she had included some samples based on my Etsy profile photo!

Off the bat I eliminated 2 of the lightest foundations which was to be expected. I was surprised at how thick the formula was, but the coverage and the color match were excellent. I tried it without primer so my skin was a tad on the dry side but tomorrow will be my full day test run. I always have problems with applying concealer and the full test for those will have to wait until tomorrow.

The extra gifts that were included in my purchase were samples of lip stick. I received 2 Restorative Lip Balms and 2 Matte Cream Lipstick samples. The lip balms were in the shades Duped and Rocket. Duped is a very pigmented pink color while Rocket was a shimmery almost coral red if that makes sense. I’m horrible at colors but the name is very spot on. It’s like a red with pink/red shimmer. I love it. As for the matte cream lip sticks I received Valentine and Hibiscus. Both are shades of red, neither are too red. Valentine is almost like a dark brick red and Hibiscus is a pink red. Makes no sense huh? Either way, I can’t wait to finish my blog post so I can open up my Etsy app and view the shop!

As for the actual full size product I purchased- the Shadow Magnet Lid Primer, it does exactly what it says it will do. I compared it to Urban Decay’s Original Primer Potion and it held its own pretty well. Of course their textures are very different. UDPP has a more liquid texture while the Shadow Magnet has a much thicker formulation. Here’s a photo of UDPP vs Shadow Magnet vs no primer.

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All in all this was a great purchase and I will definitely be buying more from Performance Colors.

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Influencer VoxBox: Palmolive Fresh Infusions

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I just received a new box today from Influenster, and I didn’t even realize I had qualified for it. In this box I got 3 full sized (16 fl oz) bottles of dish liquid. They come in 3 scents: Ginger White Tea, Lemon Thyme and Lime Basil. There were also suppose to be 5 coupon for $1.50 off but I think someone pulled some of them out of the box during shopping. I haven’t done dishes yet tonight and this is a nice little surprise. The dish soap we use most in our house is a different brand right now. Hint: it’s the brand which has the commercials with the baby animals covered in oil, being cleaned up with this product.

So far, I’m liking this new line. I love the packaging, it’s not the traditional dish soap packaging and its pretty sturdy. My one qualm is that it may not be so easy to handle while you’re washing dishes and your hands are wet. I could easily see this slipping out of my hands. Perhaps having some notches or changing the shape of the bottle slightly will help with that. Or even adding some texture to the sides of the bottle will help.

As for the scents themselves- I love the lime basil. It’s different yet still smells clean without being too overly fragranced. I’ve been seeing that a lot of brands are branching out to more fruity smells and while that’s acceptable , citrus scents are still my favorite. Most orange smelling cleaners including dish soaps are too strong in my opinion, so going with the essential lemon and lime were great choices. The White Ginger Tea was my least favorite scent but at least it wasn’t a strong scent. It was very subtle.

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Basics: Powders

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These aren’t the foundation powders I was talking about from my previous post. These powders are face powders you can use in addition to mineral powders, such as setting powders, mattifying powders or HD powders. Setting powders or finishing powders do exactly what you might have guessed- they set your makeup. Usually they’re made from a finer milled powder that fills in areas that your foundation powder didn’t. Mineral veils do almost the same thing but I don’t believe they’re as finely milled so they don’t work as well. Being that I’m not very picky and mineral veils work just as well for me, I use my mineral veils and setting powders as well. Mattifying powders are used during the day for clearing up excess oil that can accumulate. Palladio has a rice powder that works this way and they offer it in a sheet version that I keep with me at all times. My younger cousin actually ate one of these papers thinking it was food. Don’t worry, he lived.

Another powder that has been more available recently is the HD powder. I only have one of these and it’s the elf version. I don’t use it all the time since I don’t really take pictures in HD. When using flash photography this can give off a white cast which can look very odd. So unless you’re taking photos or videos in HD, you don’t really need to use this on a daily basis.

So, in conclusion- I recommend having these powders in your collection. Perhaps not all of them but they’re handy for setting your foundation (mineral or liquid) and can really maximize the staying power of your makeup. Another tip- if you’re ever using a creme eyeshadow you can make it last longer if you set it with a similar shade of powder eyeshadow.

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Ipsy (My Glam Bag) Reveal

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I’m still fairly new to the world of Subscription Beauty Boxes but I’m already on my 2nd one. Last month I posted about how disappointed I was with my Birchbox and I subsequently cancelled my subscription. I signed up for Ipsy that day and I’m so relieved I did. I received by Ipsy bag today, 2 days ahead of schedule and I’m so happy with what I received. One of the main differences between my Birchbox and Ipsy bags is that you get the same items in ALL of the bags. With a few exceptions- I mean I received a different shade of the Nyx pigments than a few of the people’s videos that I viewed on YouTube. So what exactly did I receive in my Ipsy bag?

*Metallic Grey makeup bag (of course)
*1 Full Size Nyx Pearl Pigment
*1 Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeliner Mini in Zero
*2 Mirabella Eye & Face Primers (a mistake I’m sure)
*1 MAI Couture Booklet of Highlighting Papers (25 sheets)
*1 Be A Bombshell Lipgloss in Hot Mess

So I got basically 7 items, all of which are deluxe if not full sized items. There was no food, perfume samples, foil packs or fashion tape. Don’t get me wrong I love perfume but I don’t need a sample of perfume every month. So far this is a wonderful start for Ipsy. We’ll see how they do next month!

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Basics: Lip Gloss & Lip Sticks

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Let me start this off by saying that I’m not a lipstick/lipgloss kinda girl. It’s probably the weak link in my makeup arsenal. I am constantly overlooking my lips. I’m more focused on my eyes. You might not be able to tell that though if you saw how many lip products I own. Basically I have tons. I always carry Chapstick or other lip balms with me and I use them but I do not use any with actual color. My favorite lip balm has always been Carmex. I use it on a nightly basis and my cat Jack knows that it’s sleepy time when he smells it on my lips. I have recently found 2 lip products that I absolutely love. The first is the mini lip balms from Fresh. They were the birthday gift from Sephora this year. The Sugar lips mini is smooth and it has a fresh grapefruit like scent. It’s thick without being oily and it hydrates really well. I’m considering getting more lip products from this brand. The other mini lip balm was more reddish in appearance but it didn’t have a color when I applied it. The other lip product I love is from Too Faced and it came in my Beauty Darlings set, it was a mauve colored plumping lip gloss. Though it did have some color I only applied it lightly and it has a very minty feel on the lips. It’s very refreshing and has no flavor. I find flavored glosses kind of weird anyways. So those are the two lip products I use on a semi regular basis.

So the main reason why I don’t use lip products is their lasting power. I’m aware that lip sticks have come a long way and last a lot longer but I haven’t found one that I like enough to use. Usually lip sticks that do last long tend to dry out my lips and defeats the whole purpose of having lip stick in the first place. Also, I drink a lot of water throughout the day and I hate reapplying any products. I don’t even reapply liner and I love eyeliner. That makes me wonder why I even carry my makeup in my purse with me. I guess I’m just complex like that.

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Influenster Cosmo Voxbox

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So last month sometime I signed up for Influenster because I saw a few videos on YouTube and I decided to check it out. I signed up and created my profile. It’s a great website for reviewing all things and seeing what people are raving or ranting about. I was surprised last week when I got an email letting me know that they were sending me something. Today that something finally arrived and I love the products I received! It’s not really a beauty box per say it’s more of a lifestyle box. As you can see in the photo I received-
•Forever Red by Bath & Body Works deluxe sample
•2 Pilot Frixion Pens (Black & Purple)
•Ghirardelli Gourmet Milk Sea Salt Escape
•Venus Embrace Razor with Venus & Olay Refill

First off this is a really great kit because all of these things I have been so eager to try after seeing them in the store. If you’ve read my blog before I was recently at BBW and I ended up purchasing my Cashmere Glow spray because I wasn’t 100% sure about buying the full size fragrance size of Forever Red. Now I get to try it out with this .25 oz sample that apparently retails for $10.

As for the Venus razor I literally was staring at one of these boxes at Target contemplating buying it but wasn’t sure because 1- it’s wintertime and how often am I going to be showing my legs? And 2-my hair doesn’t grow that quickly enough that I have to shave. So now I get to give this a test drive to see if I really do need it enough to repurchase.

Pens are always a win for me and I always need pens, one of my favorite websites to peruse is Jetpens. If you looked at my purse right now I have at least 3 pens in there. While this isn’t a pen I would have normally picked up because I’m going through a click pen phase, this is a great pen to have since its erasable! And it comes in purple! A lot of pens only come in the standard blue & black so finding a nice purple pen is not as easy as you might think. These two a definitely going in my purse.

Finally- the chocolate. How can you go wrong with chocolate? Especially since its sea salt & almonds. I love sweet and salty combo foods, from the salted caramel Macarons from Ginger Elizabeth Chocolatier to the salted caramel lattes at Starbucks to Kettle Corn from well…everywhere. I’ve already tried this bar and at $2.79 each they’re definitely worth it.

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this but I got this box for free from Influenster by filling out my profile and doing reviews on products I’ve used in the past. If only subscription services that you pay for did this well at choosing products for me I’d never have cancelled my subscription (ahem Birchbox), and if Influenster did start a sub service I’d pay for quality products like this.

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Basics: Eyeliners

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If you asked me what my absolute favorite must have makeup item was, I’d have to say it’s eyeliner. Ever since I’ve been old enough to use makeup I’ve always used eyeliner (sometimes a little too much) to make my eyes pop. I started out of course with the traditional eye pencils and then moved onto liquid liners, I’ve only recently become a fan of felt tip liners since my favorite elf liners came out. Gel liners are great for getting a truly dark line, but not exactly portable since I prefer to use the longer brushes and they don’t fit really well in small cases. Crayons as well aren’t that portable and horrible if you live in a hotter climate, and they can’t really do a nice thin line. Also I typically only line my top line because my eyes get teary and I hate smudging! No matter what I do I can’t get my lower line to not smudge, even if I set it. So if you’re thinking about experimenting with liners or you’re fairly new to makeup, here’s my lowdown on the different types of liners from my own experience with them. These are only my opinions so you may have your own thoughts that differ from mine, and of course depending on your products you may have different experiences.

Pencil Liners:
Pros:Great for beginners, come in a variety of shades, perfect for your waterline, very inexpensive
Cons:Pointy (ow!), hard to use for filling in, constantly needs sharpening, doesn’t last very long, usually not waterproof, melt or break easily
Brands I use: Urban Decay, Maybeline, Wet’N’Wild, Nyx, NYC

Liquid Liners:
Pros:Long lasting, easier to control, usually waterproof,
Cons:Does not last long enough, fades, brush applicators can be messy, Depending on brand- can run out quickly
Brands I use: Maybeline, Revlon, L’Oreal, Wet’N’Wild, elf

Gel Liners:
Pros:Bold Colors & Lines, true to color, lasting power
Cons:Need to apply with a brush, not portable, dries out if not used regularly
Brands I use: Maybeline, WnW, L’Oreal

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Basics: Primers

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I once told my aunt about primers and she laughed at me, asking me exactly what kind of makeup I’m using that I would need to prime my face. I first started using primers a few years ago with my first Urban Decay Primer Potion, just for the eyes. I got the more gold Sin type, since I liked the shimmer it had. Then I tried Studio Gear’s Tinted Eyeshadow primer which was a bit more liquid. Of course there’s also Elf’s eye primer which looks so tinted I once mistook it for a concealer. When I finally started using face primers I started with Elf’s Mineral Primer and Bare Escentuals Prime Time. I liked the oily but not greasy feel of the BE primer but since I have oily skin I purchased the version for oily skin. It was more like a lotion and I wasn’t very happy with it, but I still use it. I have deluxe samples of Perfect & Poreless by Too Faced, Smashbox’s Face Primer samples, Shadow Insurance Primer by Too Faced and the Lip Insurance by Too Faced. I think the Lip Insurance is a bit much and I certainly won’t be getting mascara primer. That’s pretty much my short history with primers.

There’s more high end primers I intend on trying out but they’ll be face or shadow primers. You certainly don’t have to spend a lot of money on primers since they’re more common place now that even drug store brands offer primers. They can range from the elf liners that start at a few dollars to the prestige brands that average $30-$40. There are certainly samples out there you can try, especially for the more expensive varieties. From my own personal experience they do work. They prep your face and make products you use last longer. Eyeshadows are more vibrant and true to color when applied over primer. So I suppose what my aunt said in the beginning is true. It’s like paint primer, if you spend time cleaning and moisturizing your face, why don’t you ensure you have a nice clean surface to apply your product? It’s definitely a worth while investment.

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