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Is The e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush A Bargain Beauty Best?

I Bought It Affiliate Links

As a lover of makeup brushes, especially those on the lower side of the price spectrum, I was of little resistance when I first learned about the e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush.

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush Review

But does it shed? That’s what I really wanted to know about this nifty little brush, which looks quite similar to another favorite blending brush, the Good Karma Optical Blurring Brush by Urban Decay.

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush

Good Karma is definitely a hero in my brush belt. It’s been a favorite for well over a  year and I love the way it buffs foundation on my face and lends an airbrushed appearance. The one problem I have with this $25 brush is the fact that it sheds like crazy to the point where I’m not sure if it’s going to last much longer. Really, the shedding is something else!

The Coastal Scents Bionic Flat Top Buffer Brush I purchased just a few months ago is a nice alternative to Good Karma, but it isn’t much better with the shedding and it also takes a long time to dry.

The same can be said for a similar brush that was part of the Sonia Kashuk Anniversary Set. In general, these types of brushes shed, which is something I’m not entirely thrilled about. I wonder if it has something to do with the shape of the brush that’s causing the bristles to fall out en masse, or maybe the fact that they’re all constructed with synthetic fibers?

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush Comparison and Review

e.l.f., Sonia Kashuk, Urban Decay, Coastal Scents

Now, how does the domed-shaped e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush hold up?

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush Review and Comparison

There is shedding. Oh, yes, there is shedding. The shedding has not been as dramatic as the other brushes in the past 2 weeks I have owned the e.l.f., but there is definitely a bit of shedding to consider.

Review of e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush

All things considered and shedding aside, I have to say this is a very nice and sturdy brush that smooths and blends foundation over my skin. The brush is not as firm as the Urban Decay Good Karma brush, but the results from the e.l.f. version are similar to the results I get from Urban Decay’s take on the buffing brush.

My Final Thoughts: Having used many buffing brushes in my life, I have to say I love the airbrushed results they give skin. These types of brushes shed many fibers over time, which is something to keep in mind. For $6 you can’t beat the performance and value of the e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Blending Brush, making it a bargain beauty best bet.

Rating: A

Price: $6

Availability: www.eyeslipsface.com

Cruelty-free? Yes, the fibers are made of Taklon

Hello, Pink Eyeshadow Of My Dreams, AKA, ColourPop Super Shock Shadow in Bubbly

I Bought It

My love of all things ColourPop related shows no ends! Today I wanted to show off one of my newest acquisitions, ColourPop Super Shock Shadow in Bubbly.

ColourPop Super Shock Shadow in Bubbly Review

Bubbly is a gorgeous shimmery pink with hints of silver and heavy on the glitter. In other words, it’s another makeup must have!

ColourPop Super Shock Shadow in Bubbly Swatch

ColourPop is an bargain beauty online indie company that knows what it’s doing, and I really appreciate their excellent prices and wide variety of color options. Their blushes are $8, while their shadows, lipsticks, and liners are all $5 each. To boot, their products are top notch quality, which makes ColourPop a company I can really get behind.

As with all ColourPop Super Shock Shadows, Bubbly has a bouncy texture and is applied best with the pads of your fingers. It’s long wearing and you’ll experience zero glitter fall out.

ColourPop Super Shock Shadow in Bubbly Eyeshadow Design

I wore this lovely pink on Friday paired with purple and it was a big hit. Details on this look coming up soon!

My Final Thoughts: No, ColourPop does not pay me to rave about their products, I just like them that much! It’s the brand I run to for fun makeup treats, and you can’t go wrong with Bubbly, a shimmery, glittering princess pink.

Rating: A+

Price: $5

Availability: www.colourpop.com

Cruelty-free? Yes

Paraben-free? Yes

Gluten-free? Yes

 

Enhance Your Eyes With London SOHO New York® Belle Enchanted Eyes Brushes

Press SampleAffiliate Links

It’s a tale as old as time, true as it can be to state that a good set of brushes can make or break a flawless eyeshadow application. I’ve been testing the London SOHO New York® Belle Enchanted Eyes 3-piece set of  brushes and am please to report they fall into the category of not just good, but excellent makeup brushes.

SOHO Disney Belle Enchanted Eyes Brush Set

Available at Walgreens and drugstore.com, SOHO has partnered with Disney to create 5 sets of sponges and brushes that feature Disney princesses. Besides Belle from Beauty and the Beast, there are eyeshadow brush sets featuring Ariel and Jasmine, along with a Snow White foundation sponge.

Review of London SOHO Disney Belle Enchanted Eyes Brush Set

Not only are the Belle Enchanted Eyes brushes adorable with a yellow handle, gold ferrule, and yellow and black bristle, they work very well!

London SOHO Beauty Disney Belle Enchanted Eyes Brush Set

I don’t know about you, but I love makeup brushes and I really love that great brushes are available at a variety of price points these days. Good brushes used to cost a pretty penny back in the day! Thankfully, we have the benefit of improved brush technology on our side these days and synthetic brushes are just as good and in some cases better than natural hair brushes.

The Belle Enchanted Eyes set includes the following brushes:

SOHO Disney Belle Enchanted Eyes Brush Set Review

  • Large Smokey Fluff Brush – This brush is perfect for blending color across your lids and in the crease of your eyes.
  • Medium Smokey Fluff Brush – I might be in love with this brush, which is great for definition. I love using it in the outer corner of my lids and on my lower lash line.
  • Flat Angled Liner Brush – Great for lining either your lids or brows.

Good brushes are essential and these are actually fantastic. I’m really impressed by the suppleness of the nylon fibers and how well the brushes are constructed. Plus, the brushes do not shed, which is a huge plus.

My Final Thoughts: If you’re looking for an introductory set of eyeshadow brushes or if you’re looking to add new brushes to your collection, I highly recommend the London SOHO New York® Belle Enchanted Eyes Makeup Brushes. They’re not only adorable, but highly functional.

Rating: A+

Price: $12.99

Availability: Walgreens stores, drugstore.com

Cruelty-free? Yes

I’m Going Queen Of Country With Mary Kay For The Annual Academy Of Country Music Awards

Are y’all ready to get a little bit country with me? Mary Kay® is the Official Beauty Sponsor of the 50th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards in April. Celebrity artist Moani Lee has designed 3 stunning beauty looks for this event: Queen of Country, All-American Girl, and Boho Beauty. Mary Kay Academy Of Country Music Awards I love award show makeup inspiration and had a lot of fun re-creating the gorgeous looks and putting my own spin on things. Today I’m sharing my renditions of all three gorgeous looks, but I have to say my very favorite is Queen of Country, which is described as being “sexy, beautiful, and confident.” Mary Kay Queen Of Country Makeup Inspiration With a palette of smoky purples and pink, this look is smoldering and perfect for a fancy night out. I just love a good smoldering makeup design. Mary Kay Queen Of Country Makeup Inspiration Purple Eyeshadow This purple eyeshadow is the Mary Kay® Mineral Shadow in Sweet Plum, and it’s pretty much my new favorite shadow. I mean, it’s everything! Mary Kay Queen Of Country Products The products are all well-pigmented and long-wearing. A huge plus! Mary Kay Queen Of Country Swatches I had a lot of fun playing with the other collections as well, including All-American Girl, which has a light, fresh, and pink palette of colors. Mary Kay All American Girl This is such a pretty look and it’s perfect for spring. I’ll be reaching for these colors often! Mary Kay All American Girl Products Mary Kay All American Girl Swatches Boho Beauty is a sun-kissed, bronze design. These sunny shades are so pretty and will work so well for spring and into summer. The orange cream shadow I used for this look is such a great everyday color and I’ll be using it quite frequently in the upcoming months. Mary Kay Boho Beauty Yes, I had to add a flower garland to this look! Mary Kay Boho Beauty Makeup Mary Kay Boho Beauty Swatches All three looks are versatile and very wearable. I know I’ll be wearing these lovely products and having a lot of fun mixing and matching. For more about these looks, Mary Kay® has further breakdowns of these looks and a video you can check out on the main landing page. What do you think about these looks? Queen of Country has my heart, but I love them all and think they’re universally appealing. One very lucky Painted Ladies reader will receive a Mary Kay® prize pack! To enter for a chance to win, simply leave a comment letting me know which of the three country music-inspired makeup looks you like the best.

Brought to you by Mary Kay. All opinions are my own.

 

Entry Instructions:

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You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

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2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

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4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older (or nineteen (19) years of age or older in Alabama and Nebraska). Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 2 business days to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 3/30/2015 – 4/30/2015

Be sure to visit Mary Kay’s brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!

My Instagram Life, 3/29/15

Can you believe it’s nearly April? It seems like March flew by at super sonic speeds. I hope you’re all having a fab weekend. Here’s a look at what happened on the blog and behind-the-scenes, as seen on Instagram.

This is one of my eyeshadow secrets. A dab of a cream base on the lid makes your powder shadows so much more vibrant.

MAC Pearl Cream Color Base

Last week I reviewed the City Color Contour Effects palette. Is it worth the $14?

City Color Contour Effects

Sugarpill Countess is a new favorite shadow. My thoughts and how I used it here!

Sugarpill Countess Loose Shadow

Really and sincerely one of the best teas I’ve ever tasted. From Trader Joe’s it’s the Rooibos and Honeybush Tea – it’s so sweet and flavorful and worth checking out!

Trader Joe's Rooibos and Honeybush Tea

A #throwback Thursday to my days working for MAC. I asked on IG if anyone knew what collection the t-shirt was from and no one knew! Can you guess?

Sheila Arkee MAC Cosmetics

My hair is really loving the Macadamia PRO line and I shared my 3 favorite tips for maintaining curly hair sanity.

Macadamia Pro Hair Care For Curly Hair

It was a good day when I got my hands on e.l.f. Cosmetics Fiji!

elf Fiji

I had a great time at the blogger preview event at The Makeup Show LA this past Friday. More details coming soon, but it’s always a pleasure listening to James Vincent talk about the beauty industry.

James Vincent The Makeup Show LA

It was even more awesome to meet up with my fellow beauty bloggers that I know so well online but have never met in person. We got along so well! On the left side of the photo is Krystal from Beauty By Krystal and on my left is Jamie Lewis from Makeup, Life, and Love.

Beauty By Krystal Painted Ladies Makeup Life And Love

I was so, so, so, super excited to see my former co-worker from MAC Cosmetics Erik Soto. Erik was a Pro Artist for Sephora for many years before recently becoming the Global Beauty Director for Kat Von D Beauty. He is super talented! Kat was at the event as well, and she is gorgeous in person!

Erik Soto and Sheila Arkee

Also at The Makeup Show LA event was Shrinkle from Sugarpill Cosmetics, and she is beyond adorable. Beyond! The day of the event I featured Sugarpill CandyCrush eyeshadow, a lovely cool minty shadow.

Sugarpill CandyCrush

One of my all-time favorite beauty tips is to use a recycled brown napkin to soak up excess oil. It works wonders!

Beauty Tip Use A Brown Napkin For Oil Control

I have a few posts coming up with my Makeup Show LA finds, but one of the greatest was these disposable hand palettes from Glamcor. They’re genius!

Glamcor Palettes

With my day-to-day life and busy schedule as a mom, I don’t often get out to events, but by sheer serendipity my mother-in-law was able to watch my son on Friday evening so I could attend The Makeup Show LA event in Downtown LA. I am so glad I went and connected with old and new blogging friends. I’m really hoping to attend more events this year – networking in person is a good thing!

Here’s to a blessed week!

Urban Decay, YSL, Wet n Wild, and Tom Ford On The Beauty Blog Coalition

Here’s a look at what members of the Beauty Blog Coalition talked about this week!

 

SolScents Continuous Spray Sunscreen Is Good-For-You Sun Protection

Press Sample

SolScents Continuous Spray Sunscreens will be my constant companions in the upcoming warm Summer months.

SolScents Continuous Spray Sunscreen

It’s already warm (and getting warmer) in Southern California, which means it’s time to take a little more care with sun protection. I’m always wearing SPF and love learning about new sun care products.

A while back I reviewed SolScents liquid sunscreens and have since fallen in love with these products that are in permanent residence in my purse. The lightweight texture and lovely scents make SolScents sunscreens a must have in my life.

SolScents Continuous Spray Sunscreen Review

I’ve been testing the Continuous Sprays and they’re definitely winners. Just as with the liquid sunscreens, The SolScents Continuous Sprays offer a lightweight, fast-absorbing, moisturizing product that’s antioxidant-rich and does not have the traditional cloying sunscreen fragrance.  They’re available in broad spectrum SPF levels of 30 and 50, with a portion of proceeds going to benefit various causes.

DSC_1442

SolScents Continuous Spray Sunscreen is currently available in two scents and SPF levels:  Deep Love, and Flower Blast. Deep Love benefits Breast Cancer Awareness and has SPF 30 and a scent of Sugared Plums & Freesia.

SolScents Continuous Spray Sunscreen Deep Love

Flower Blast benefits Bullying Awareness, has SPF 50 and a scent of Jasmine and Cattleya Orchids.

SolScents Continuous Spray Sunscreen Flower Blast

My Final Thoughts: For a different take on sunscreen that’s full of good-for-you ingredients and refreshing scents, SolScents are worth checking out! I’ll be using both Deep Love and Flower Blast a lot in the Spring and Summer months!

Rating: A

Price: $12.99

Availability: Solscents.com and select Target stores. Check the store locator!

Cruelty-free? Yes

Paraben-free? Yes

Makeup Of The Day 97 With Sugarpill CandyCrush

Press SampleI Bought It

Sugarpill CandyCrush is just the cool, minty green eyeshadow my makeup collection needed! I thought it would amazing in a little twist on the traditional smoky eye. This is a fun Summer color combo!

Makeup Design With Sugarpill CandyCrush and MAC Sketch and Makeup Geek Poolside Eyeshadow and ColourPop Lumiere Lippie Stix

Keep reading for more photos and to find out what products I used for this look!

Continue reading Makeup Of The Day 97 With Sugarpill CandyCrush

I’m Crushing Hard For Sugarpill CandyCrush Eyeshadow

I Bought It

An eye makeup lover through and through, I’ve been on a bit of an eyeshadow spree lately, with Sugarpill CandyCrush being one of my latest acquisitions.

Sugarpill CandyCrush Eyeshadow Review

It was love at first sight with this cool, shimmery, icy mint green, which leans a tad bit more on the blue side of the color spectrum and gives off a bit of an old school makeup vibe.

Sugarpill CandyCrush and MAC Sketch and Makeup Geek Poolside Eyeshadow

I really don’t own enough light mint or blue colors, so CandyCrush is the perfect addition to my shadow collection.

Sugarpill CandyCrush Swatch

I love shopping for shadows at Sugarpill, finding their loose and pressed shadows to offer tons of color payoff and with a wide variety of both matte and shimmery eyeshadow options.

Sugarpill CandyCrush

CandyCrush is a bit soft, so be careful about not dropping it or letting it fall too often. That’s what happened to me, and while the shadow isn’t shattered, it’s definitely showing some cracks around the edges.

My Final Thoughts: You can’t go wrong with eyeshadow from Sugarpill. I love this indie brand and I’m glad I picked up CandyCrush – it’s a fun color to wear on it’s own, or paired with a smoky eye.

Rating: A

Price: $12

Availability: www.sugarpillshop.com

Cruelty-free? Yes

Paraben-free? Yes

Is e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji A Bargain Beauty Best Buy?

I Bought It Affiliate Links

e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji is one of those beauty items I spent months hunting down. And I mean, months! When I hear good things about certain products, I’ll search high and low, and that’s pretty much exactly what I did at any and every Target store I have come across since late 2014, when Fiji was first released.

e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji

So, what’s the deal with Fiji that makes it oh, so attainable?

Review of e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji

For starters, it’s matte, which makes it perfect to use for contouring purposes. Also, the $3 price tag makes it extremely attractive.

e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji Review

The blush in this duo is a deep berry color that is easy to build up. The bronzer has a nice amount of warmth to it, which I find makes it ideal for contouring purposes.

e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji Swatches

The matte texture is what sets Fiji apart from the rest of e.l.f.’s blush and bronzer duos. The pigmentation is really nice, and while I won’t claim it’s THE most pigmented blush I’ve ever used, it does offer a nice amount of long-wearing color. Fiji and the rest of the the colors in this collection remind me of similar products from Nars, and offer great color payoff with much better pricing.

Makeup With e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji

So, why didn’t I just order Fiji online to begin with? Well, when I first wanted this product, e.l.f.’s standard shipping was $8, and I didn’t really want anything else from e.l.f. at that time to justify that price. To my surprise, e.l.f.’s standard shipping rates have gone down about $3 and I was able to find and use a coupon code (BDAYFIVE) for $5 off my order, which also included a few other e.l.f. items I’ll be sharing with you soon.

My Final Thoughts: Price and product quality considered, I’m naming e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji a bargain beauty best buy. It’s definitely worth checking out, especially if you’re a fan of contouring.

Rating: A

Price: $3

Availability: www.eyeslipsface.com

Cruelty-free? Yes

Paraben-free? Yes