Purchased by Me

For years I have been against spending money on luxury cosmetics.  Not that the products were bad, I just could not fathom spending $50.00 or more (for example) on powder or blush.  Then one day I found myself in Dillards among beautiful shades of lipsticks and powders all of which I considered “luxury cosmetics.”  It was there and then I decided to go for the gusto and purchase one of these pricey items and see how it fairs.

One of the first products I purchased was Chanel’s Natural Finish Loose Powder in Translucent 2.  This finely milled powder is to die for!  I mean it is perfection in a jar.  You get 1 oz of product, but this will last you for a while as you only use a little bit at a time.  The product never appears powdery but instead looks luminous on your skin.  With this powder, it is not about coverage, but instead it is about the finished appearance you receive when using it.

Chanel Natural Finish Loose Powder

I have to admit that this powder is totally worth the money.  I have tried many loose powders (MAC, Laura Mercier) and the Chanel powder tops them all.  The packaging itself is great and comes with a small Chanel powder puff.  I prefer to use a big powder brush to dust it over my face and the cap is great to roll my big brush around in.  It will set your makeup and keep your face beautiful no matter what conditions you find yourself in; such as the humidity down here in New Orleans.

I did some research and in case you have oily to sensitive skin, the Chanel Natural Loose Powder should not break you out. This has now become my go to powder.  It makes my skin look more natural, glowing and flawless.  This powder is an instant home run for me!

The Chanel Natural Finish Loose Powder retails for $52.00.  It may be purchased at Nordstrom and Dillards.


Purchased by Me

Everyone who wears makeup uses foundation.  Foundation gives us an even canvas on which to apply our makeup.  But must you spend a lot of money to achieve the look you want?  Of course not.  But there are those few foundations where you get what you pay for.  I chose three foundations to speak about: (1) a low end (2) a mid range and (3) a high end.

Low End

Sephora Teint Infusion – This line of foundation is light to medium in coverage and compares to the MAC’s Studio Waterweight Foundation.  It will give you an even skintone, and it is weightless in texture.  And even though it is light in texture, the foundation is buildable.  I read somewhere that those with oily skin may have some difficulty with the product. However, I found this product to be very affordable. It goes on smooth, velvety to the touch and is long lasting. I liked the fact that the Sephora Teint Infusion was easy to blend, gives me a natural look.  This foundation retails for $24.oo at all Sephora locations and www.sephora.com.

Sephora Teint Infusion Foundation

Mid Range

MAC Mineralize Foundation – the optical blurring effect that this foundation formula gives virtually diminishes imperfections and fine lines for a more even tone.  It reflects light beautifully, and gives a beautiful and natural, satin finish.  It goes on sheer but has buildable coverage. And as a bonus, this foundation has 15 SPF.  I have very dry skin in the winter, and I have found that is when this foundation works best for me. I really like how natural it looks on my face. I typically apply it with a foundation brush and then apply light powder around my T-Zone. It also gave me great buildable coverage.  The MAC Mineralize foundation retails for $36.00 and may be purchased at your local MAC store or www.maccosmetics.com.

MAC Mineralize Foundation

High End

We have finally reached our high end foundation; Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua.  The foundation is ultra-light skin perfecting sunscreen makeup.  It has 15 SPF,  and you just need a small amount for coverage.  Your skin will have a refreshed and polished appearance when using this foundation.  The foundation has 10 shades (not as many as I am used to), but the shade which you do end up choosing is extremely complimentary to your skin tone.  Coverage is buildable and blends seamlessly.  This foundation is one of the better high end foundations.  The Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua foundation retails for $48.00 and may be purchased at Nordstrom, Macy’s and www.chanel.com.

Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua Foundation

So if I had to choose a favorite, which one would it be?  That’s a tough one, but I would go with MAC’s Mineralize Foundation on the basis it contains both of the good qualities in the low end foundation and the high end foundation.  Not to mention there are plenty of shades to match your skin tone.

So what are some of your foundations which are in your arsenal and why do you like that foundation?


Purchased by Me

We all know that shading your brows will help frame your face giving you a complete look.  But do you necessarily need to spend $20.00 or more to complete your look with a brow pencil?  In my opinion, no.  But I will let you be the judge.  I am setting up a battle between It Cosmetics Brow Powder against ULTA’s Brow Gel Crayon.

ULTA Brow Gel Crayon vs It Cosmetics Brow Powder

Here is the look with the It Cosmetics Brow Powder.  The product retails for $24.00.

It Cosmetics Brow Powder Swatch

The pros of the It Cosmetics Brow Powder:  It has an oval shaped tip which is great for both thin and thick brows. The spooly end brush gives a natural polished look.  The Brow Power Universal Eyebrow Pencil matches all hair colors and covers those troublesome grays.  The cons:  It is pricey.  When I applied the brow powder, it took me several swipes before I could achieve any color.  Once I did, I found the color to be decent, but not the exact coverage and color I was hoping to achieve.

On to the ULTA Brow Gel Crayon.  Here is the look I achieved with this product.  It retails for $3.97.

ULTA Brow Gel Crayon Swatch

The pros of the ULTA Brown Gel Crayon.  It only took one swipe to obtain color on my brown and the shade was perfect. It just glided on without have to swipe back and forth to get color and coverage.  There was no smearing as you would expect with a gel crayon. I like using this product. I like the way it enhances my eyes and how it works well with my eye shadow.  The cons:  Sometimes the gel crayon can go on too heavy/thick.  During my research I discovered that some users complained that the brown gel wore off easily.  However, I did not have this problem.

So, yes.  My vote is for the ULTA Brow Gel Crayon.  It had all the properties that I look for in a brow pencil.  It was easy to apply, had good pigmentation, and it is a good value.

All products may be purchased at your local ULTA store.


Purchased by Me

You have been up all night binge watching your favorite show and you wake up with bags and circles under your eyes.  With dr. brandt’s Glow Revitalizing Retinol eye cream, you will be able to take on those bags and circles and regain your youthful appearance within minutes.  This little miracle bottle not only fights the signs of aging, but also reduces puffiness and fades dark circles.  The slender pink bottle may look sweet and demure, but do not be fooled; it contains potent anti-aging ingredients to battle wrinkles and fine lines, and micronized ruby crystals to effectively hydrate and re-energize delicate skin.


Since I turned 40, I have been battling to retain as youthful of a look as possible without fillers.  I had extremely dry skin under my eyes this winter, causing fine lines. I was hesitant to use a retinol based eye cream for fear of making the already dry area more dry and create more fine lines. It was not the case! My under eye area is smooth and moisturized now. I have only been using it two weeks and already see a difference.  I have tried so many different eye creams in the quest for a perfect one.  This product is great for day and night. My eyes do look brighter and more awake. The lotion is light and unscented and goes just fine under makeup – no sticking/smudging.

The retinol has helped out in the long term, but not so much that it irritates my eyes. It is light enough to use everyday without a burning sensation.  And all you need is the smallest dot, so it should last you for a while.  I am happy with the quick, youthful results and would recommend it to anyone who is battling those darn under eye circles and bags.

Glow by dr. brandt Revitalizing Retinol Eye Cream retails for $55.00 for 0.5 oz.  You may purchases it at Sephora, ULTA and Macy’s.

Get That Classic Look In One Box – MAC LOOK IN A BOX EYE KIT

Purchased by Me

MAC’s Look In A Box Eye Kit comes complete with black fluidline eyeliner gel, black mascara and black eye kohl liner.  All products are full sized products, and the eye makeup lasts for approximately eight hours and is waterproof.  You have everything you need to complete that sexy, sultry look for a night on the town. And do not worry, all of the eye makeup is safe for contact lens wearers and is ophthalmologist tested.  And to top it all off, the kit comes with a face chart to help guide you through the application process.

MAC Look in a Box Eye Kit

I will start with the In Extreme Dimension Lash Mascara.  This mascara completely amazed me!  My lashes were so thick and full of dimension that it looked like false lashes.  And it stayed that way all night long without flaking.  I like that I can build up the lash base making the hard to reach places pitch black and thick.  It can be a little messy at times, but nothing that would stop me from using the mascara again.

The next product is the black fluidline eyeliner gel.  I think the blacker the liner, the better.  I will admit, in my opinion that this liner is not a very deep black.  However, this gel eyeliner allows for foolproof application and is just pigmented enough to cover any false eyelashes.  I like this formula because of how fast it dries.  I am not sitting around fanning my closed eyes, waiting for the liner to dry.  The formula is smooth and creamy.  It even lasts on my watery eyes for hours on end.

Finally, there is the black eye kohl pencil.  It is silky smooth and rich in color.  Staying power is good on me; color stays true all day without fading. The only fault I could find was that this particular eyeliner does not last long on the waterline.  It does not smudge, and it lasts all day, but it will fade a bit.  The black color also does not get lighter on me and stays looking the way it did when I first apply it in the morning for the rest of the day, even through minor wear.

All in all this is a great eye kit.  I love how all the products are full sized and that these products are premium products.  The kit retails for $36.50 and may be purchased at MAC Stores and www.maccosmetics.com.


Purchased by Me

I was doing some research on the Internet not too long ago and came across a line of cosmetics called Gorgeous Cosmetics.  Gorgeous Cosmetics produces makeup for face, eyes and lips.  They even produce quality brushes, accessories (i.e. pencil sharpeners), makeup cases and gift sets.  You can even produce your own palettes.  When I first tried Gorgeous Cosmetics, I purchased a 4 pan palette for smokey eyes; the romance shade edition.  I   was highly impressed with the pigmentation and the silky feel.  The size of the eyeshadow pans are massive, so you really get what you pay for.  And in my opinion, the colors in the romance edition will compliment most skin tones and can be worn both day and night.

Gorgeous Eyeshadow with Custom Smokey Eye Shadow

Gorgeous Eyeshadow with Custom Smokey Eye Shadow Shades Swatches

The colors in this palette blends smoothly and wears for a long period of time.  You can wear each eyeshadow by itself or create your own masterpiece with a variety of colors.  And the dark colors can even be used as an eyeliner.  The palette is practically a chameleon of color palettes.  I love how I can derive a million looks with this romance palette.  My favorite color is Dusk Rose.  I love the shade of pink and how it can be blended with the rest of the colors to develop a one of kind look.

The Gorgeous Cosmetics 4 Pan Smokey Eyes; Romance Shades retails for $39.oo.  It may be purchased at www.gorgeouscosmetics.com.