If there’s anything I splurge on it’s usually skin care, eye shadow and base/foundation. I’m a firm believer that having a great base/foundation makes for a flawless makeup finish look, meaning prepping your skin with products catering to your skin’s needs as well as base that won’t clog pores.
I’m always striving to stay on the look out for products that are inexpensive without compromising the quality of the product, I have been uhhh fairly pleased with some of my drugstore finds but here are some of the ones that are high-end comparable in performance and price point.
For Chinese New Year’s day, I wanted to incorporate these products on my day’s red and gold look.
I prepped my skin with my usual day time skin care products, then primed with Lancome’s La Base Primer ($42.00 Sephora) I used Illamasqua’s Skin Base Foundation ($42 Sephora) set it with Rimmel’s Mattifying Powder ($4.99). For my brows, I used the Maybelline’s Color Tattoo in Matte Brown ($6.99 Limited Edition Ulta)- I didn’t get much use for this as I found it to be too drying for my lids so I used it for my brows to fill in the sparse area instead and it works amazing. On to the eyes, I primed my lids with Lorac’s Behind the Scene Primer ($21 Ulta) and used Lorac Pro Palette ($42 Ulta -FYI Sephora no longer carry Lorac products) along with the gold from Marc Jacob’s Starlet Palette ($59 Sephora Exclusive) for my liners, I used Milani’s Eye Tech Extreme WP Liquid Eye Liner ($8.49 CVS) and smudged Rimmel ScandalEye liner ($4.99 CVS) on the lower lash, upper and lower waterline and set with the black from the PRO Palette and finished the look with my current fave mascara which is the Loreal Lash Out Butterfly Mascara ($8.99 Ulta) in WP Blackest Black.
For the cheeks, I used my Benefit Hoola bronzer to contour and my go to this week blush and highlight from the Nars’ Guy Bourdin Palette.
For Lips, I opted for a satin finished red lips just because the matte is drying and my lips are a bit chapped otherwise, I would have used my MAC’s Rubywoo Red, for this look I used Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm ($7.99 Ulta) in Standout to line and fill then topped it off with Rimmel Show Off Lip Lacquer ($5.89 Ulta) in Big Bang and blotted it lightly to remove some of that gloss for a more satin finish.
*****Thoughts on the products mentioned*****
Some of these products I’ve owned for a while and some fairly recent/holiday releases.
Lancome La Base Primer- I like this, it’s oil-free, silicon feel primer that works well for me specially in the winter months where my skin feels a lil drier. A thinner consistency compared to Smashbox’s Photofinish primer. Longevity is not that great though, I found that whenever I used this primer my face is shiny on the 5th-6th hour. This primer is definitely not going to be a good recommendation to oily-combination skin. It may emphasize larger pores as it is not a filler primer and a little goes a long way.
Illamasqua Skin Base Foundation- I’ve used this foundation for over 2 years now and it’s definitely one of my go-to foundation specially for the summer time. It is a matte finish foundation with a medium-full coverage. It has an interesting sweet smelling scent that usually dissipates after the foundation is applied and dried. I can’t confirm on the longevity of this foundation but I can attest to about 8 hours of matte to semi-matte by the end of the day and would need to set it with powder and maybe a mid day blot if you’re oily, definitely a go for oily-combination skin and if you have dry skin, make sure you have a hydrating moisturizer underneath.
Rimmel Stay Matte Powder- Please read last #FrugalFriday post for a review of this product.
Maybelline Color Tattoo- These Color Tattoo’s are supposed to be a dupe for MAC’s paint pots and some do perform just as well but this one particular matte that came out in the fall of 2013, limited edition I believe, it is a bit too dry for me and hard to blend but I did find a great use for it. I ended up using this to fill in my brows and it works wonderful. I can call this a dupe to Anastasia’s brow dip. It is great for sparse brows and set it with powder matching my brows.
Lorac Behind the Scene Primer- This is a great primer and it goes on smoothly and it did keep my shadows true to color after application. It does not conceal the lids as the formula is a light one that disappears once applied on the lids so if you need to conceal lids, I suggest using a paint pot or cream shadow as a base. Longevity is ok if you don’t have an oily lid. In the summer time I usually turn to my trusted UD potion primer for it’s creaseless and long lasting formula. If you have non-oily or dry skin, give this Lorac primer a try but if you have an oily or creasy lids, opt for UD potion primer. As mentioned above, this primer is no longer available at Sephora so hunt yours at Ulta or online.
Lorac Pro Palette- I am in love with this palette (Just as I am with my other ones lol) but the versatility of this palette with it’s perfect blend of mattes and shimmer gives me the flexibility to create endless looks from natural day look to a more sultry, smokey night look. The palette contains pigmented and super easy to blend shadows. Price point is on the higher end but seriously, this palette will last you a long time and I think it’s definitely worth the investment.
Marc Jacobs Style Eye-Con Starlet Palette- Collection review of this palette is available here.
Milani Eye Tech Extreme WP Eye Liner- This has got to be one of my favorite liquid liner from the drugstore. It is a matte black eye liner that is easy to apply with it’s felt tip applicator (Perfect for beginners) goes on smoothly and best of all it stays and does not flake off.
Rimmel ScandalEye Liner- I like how creamy this is and so easy to apply. It is great for waterlining, unfortunately my eyes are too sensitive and have yet to find one eye liner (highend or drugstore) that stays on my waterline, this is great for lining and it blends and smudges so easily to create a smokey look. If your eyes are not so sensitive like mine, this is definitely a great eye liner.
Loreal Lash Out Butterfly Mascara- I am so impressed with this mascara. I originally purchased the original one and I loved it and it had a similar scent to my YSL’s shocking mascara ( as it should be expected since they have the same manufacturing parent) and I am impressed with the volume and length it gave me but…. the original one did not hold my curl and t definitely transferred on my lower lash when I had a teary moment the evening of when I wore the mascara (long story, my brother in law came home and surprised my niece and they caught it on video and I was boohoo-ing when I was watching the video-perfect mascara test if you ask me lol) Anyhow, I digress…but yeah this mascara was amazing for volumizing and lengthening my short stubby lashes so as soon as the waterproof formula was released, you already know I was all over that sucker and boy it did not disappoint, it is my current go to mascara on a day to day wear specially on my minimal days of brows, CC cream and mascara days. The brush is still taking a bit longer to get used to but the product itself is amazing.
Benefit Hoola Bronzer- Can’t say enough praise about this bronzer. This matte formulation is so easy to blend and works well with so many undertones from fair pinks to darkest olive. Benefit’s cheek products are amazing in general but this has been a fave repurchase of mine since it’s introduction and I would probably be hurt and depressed if they ever discontinue it’s production.
NARS Guy Bourdin Cheek Palette- I have to admit, I have struggled with the decision to buy or pass on this product when it launched for the holidays 2013, but only because I already owned full sizes of the 4 blushes in this collection, but what sold me was the highlighter in the palette. It had the perfect shimmer that is not frosty or glittery and the other matte pink shade is just so pretty underneath the orgasm in the palette. Overall, this is a great palette but unfortunately with it being a limited item, it may be hard to find them now. :-/ The good news is they are available in single pans except the highlighter, which I hope they do add them on to the permanent collection.
Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm Stick- This lip balm right here?!?!? Oh Em Gee! This is a super pigmented and moisturizing lip balm stick, It is creamy and easy to apply. One swipe provides enough coverage and actually lasts for a good 3-4 hours. The finish is not too matte that it dries up your lips because of it’s balm formulation. You can definitely wear this alone or top it off with any gloss to add some shine to it like I did with Rimmel’s Showoff Laquer ,This is a super pigmented laquer that can be worn alone or on top of any lipstick like I did. It is a great lip laquer that is super pigmented and has a glossy finish. You can mattify this lip laquer with a simple tissue blot.
Whew that was a lot of product…. Thank you for reading and if you have any products you wanted reviewed, high end or drugstore, please comment with your thoughts below or email, don’t forget to share & socialize with me on twitter, instagram and facebook ……stay beauty-full