Category Archives: Face

Buying Stuff: Foundation Edition


Not too long ago, about a year to be accurate, I barely gave two blinks about my makeup. And foundation was only worn on special occasions. Fast forward to today and the following bullshit has happened:


I have no idea how this has came to pass. I didn’t even think I cared about foundation. But now I’m obsessed like a proper crazy person. Should I be worried?

The newest babies of the family are these below. Let’s discuss, shall we?


Awww, the beautiful star of the show. Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk. The Holy Grail of millions (an estimation, but probably). How could I not buy this? Literally, HOW. COULD. I. NOT. You try watching countless YouTube videos singing the praises of this foundation and then somehow not shell out $60 willingly and carefreeingly to own a bottle of your very own. Spoiler alert: it’s impossible.

My color is 5.5 which is a pretty good match for my NW20 cool-toned skin. I had the lady on the Armani phone do a cross reference with some of my other matching foundations in order to settle on a color for me. I was taking a chance as there is no local Armani counter nor have I ever swatched them much less seem them in person. Not that I couldn’t have exchanged it if it was the wrong color, but who has time for that? I much prefer doing it right the first time.

It took a couple tries to figure out I really liked this foundation. This has a beautiful luminous finish (aptly named), but when you use a mattifying primer underneath it, you kind of ruin it. So don’t do that unless you’re okay with being WRONG. I used just a normal primer and then most recently a brightening primer from NP Set and now our love affair is confirmed. Approved! Put it in your basket.

Next is the Rimmel Stay Matte mousse foundation:


My color is #200 Soft Beige. I say it’s my color but really there’s only like 8 shades to pick from. Soft Beige is the best I could do. As long as I don’t put too much on, it seems to do okay.

The texture of this foundation is very mousse-y. I like mousse. It makes me think of dessert, which I also happen to like. So things are starting out rather good at this point. It applies very smoothly, does not give you cake-face, and evens out the skin very well.

Throughout the day I kept checking my face in the mirror for signs of shine, and happily things looked good. Was matte but not a one-dimensional kind of matte. It reflected the tiniest bit of light but in a positive non-greasy sort of way.

This tube was on sale at Ulta when I bought it so I parted with a mere $4 of my money. And honestly I like this foundation just as much as my high end brands. I do recommend you give this a try especially if you have oily skin. I mean, for the investment you’ll have to make, it’s totally worth it.

Now here’s two cuties all snuggled up – the Ellis Faas Skin Veil and the new Laura Mercier Smooth Operator:


So presh. Let’s start with the Ellis Faas first. This is the most expensive foundation I’ve ever worn. If someone hadn’t given me a very large gift card I never would have bought it. Cuz $90 for foundation is insanity. Unless you perform magic tricks upon the face, I draw the line at $60. And even that hurts a bit. However, I was very curious and it was practically free so I went for it.

My shade according to the Sephora Color IQ system is S103L. It matches pretty good when I’m applying it. It’s rather thick, but not sticky. Like it’ll blend out easily. However, and maybe it’s my fault for having high expectations, or maybe it’s their fault for charging almost $100 for their foundation, but at that price I was hoping it would glide on like silk and I would look like myself but only a wax figurine (i.e., perfect) version. Maybe “wax” isn’t proper, but have you been to Madame Tussauds? Those “people” in there are flawless.

I did not really like the finish of this foundation. It did not have as much coverage as the others. When I got in the car to drive to work (where I do my most constructive critiquing), I did not enjoy what I saw. The hyperpigmentation on my cheek seemed pronounced instead of concealed and my skin looked flat. What a bummer. I mean a real big o boo. I figured $90 would replace my old face with a new one; instead, I just looked old.

Later on in the day, the color seemed to settle into my skin and the finish did transform a bit to the good. I don’t know if it needs time to set or if the lighting in the afternoon is just more flattering. Either way, I will not gravitate towards this foundation as much as the others. Mom said she’d buy it off me for $20. I laugh in a guffawing unladylike fashion. Just cuz I don’t like it doesn’t mean I don’t want it. Have we learned nothing about me during this process?

Now let’s discuss the Laura Mercier one. My shade is Ecru. And the second I applied this foundation, I knew I wanted the full size. I love it when that happens don’t you? Being on the fence is no place for a lady, lemme tell you.

This is an extremely liquidy foundation. You have to shake it up real good prior to using it. It’s similar to the new Bare Minerals serum foundation if you’ve tried that. Super watery consistency so be careful or it’ll roll right off your fingers.

I’ve applied this a few times and I’ve discovered you get the best finish by using your fingers. Also it’s nice and buildable if you don’t get enough coverage the first go round. I don’t know about you, but if sheer coverage foundations didn’t exist I’d be perfectly fine with that. Otherwise, you must have the skin of a 14-year-old and we don’t like you anyway.

I got a smooth, almost airbrushed look with one layer and I stayed that way all day. I most definitely will replace my sample when it runs out because I just loved it. It’s one of those foundations that makes a noticeable difference on your face. Like, BAM!, instant supermodel. I ain’t even gonna pretend otherwise.

Then we have the Chantecaille Future Skin:


I’ll admit I got this foundation cuz I enjoy saying the name Chantecaille. But on the other hand, the jar packaging just spoke luxury to me and I wanted a little luxury in my life. And also cuz it’s my month-long birthday extravaganza. If you can’t turn 40 in a proper manner, then what is the point of life? I ask you, WHAT. IS. THE. POINT.

I did a little research and prayed to the little baby Jesus that Vanilla would be my shade. Turns out, it’s a pretty good match. Even I am amazed at my own skills sometimes.

Opening the jar, your first thought is Pudding!, then you calm down and behave accordingly. It’s a wonderful consistency though. Just a very creamy foundation that blends out so beautifully. It’s about a medium coverage but on the lightest side of medium – at least on my face that is. I have a splotchy complexion so maybe it takes something industrial to make me look flawless.

The finish is pretty natural. Not too matte but certainly not dewy. I liked it very much. However I wasn’t blinded by my own beauty or anything so it doesn’t compare to my beloved Giorgio or even the matte gorgeousness of the Rimmel. But I don’t regret purchasing it even though it was pretty pricey.

Last newbie is this tube of L’Oreal Visible Lift blur foundation.


I got the shade Creamy Natural #204 which was determined by holding the tube up against another foundation I know matched me. It’s not a science or anything but it worked.

I freaking love this foundation. It’s stunning. I can’t even quite put my finger on it but it makes you take a second look at yourself like Oh, hi there. My complexion was even, pores barely noticeable, color was a great match. It spread over the face like it was made of satin. It was pure pleasure to apply and insanely beautiful to wear. And even after a sweaty walk after lunch one day, it held up perfectly.

What is even more ridiculous is the fact this cost like $15. It does what the Ellis Faas (at $90) should be doing. Is that not crazy? If you have to consider this question then you may want to consult your physician about your broken brain.

In short, I very highly recommend this one. Two thumbs up and all that jazz. It’s approved. Put it in your basket like yesterday.

Okay y’all … I’m outta here. Got some birthday plans this weekend and lots of makeup to buy. Obviously I’ll be var var busy. See ya in September!

Benefit POREfessional


I know y’all know what this is.  It’s only been talked about ten billion times by beauty gurus, magazines, experts and nobodies like me.  It’s a product that’s destined for cult classic status, if it’s not officially already there.  It’s a must have, a bestseller, probably an award-winner (or should be).

But for those who hang out under rocks, this is what I’m talking about:


Benefit’s POREfessional.  Otherwise known as Miracle in a Tube.  First of all, I’ve never bought a full size of this; I’m working on my second sample tube as we speak.  But once that’s gone, I am no doubt, 100% certain I am repurchasing.  How can I not?  It creates a magic-like situation upon my face, and without it I would be a facsimile of a sham of a person with a face.

Let me explain.

I have pores.  Massive, crater-y, sinkhole-y pores.  It is hideous.  I never really noticed them before, back when I hardly used makeup, and could barely manage a half-hearted swipe of powder that was probably 2 shades too light for me anyway.  But now that I stare at my face for at least an hour and 20 minutes every morning (don’t judge; it takes 30 minutes just to do eyeshadow), I’ve been noticing some unseemly incidents and I no likee.  Face skin like the texture of an orange rind.  That’s not even an exaggeration.  Sound lovely?  It is not.

So what does one do to rectify this situation?  Buy all the pore-shrinking, minimizing, blurring, filling, and/or scraping off products in existence.  Then have at it.  Turns out, not much helps.  Not in an instant gratification kind of way, which is the only way I like to do things.  Serious, if you can’t make me beautiful and perfect RIGHT THIS SECOND then I have no use for you.

Received a small tube of the POREfessional in one of the many sample kits I purchased at Ulta.  I’ve been told people apply it as a primer, so that was honestly my intention first time I used it.  The color was nude and quickly disappeared into my skin.  The texture was very silicone-y, like powder or velvet or something equally luxurious and soft.  But the pore-filling power was … eh.  I didn’t think it did much other than maybe some psychological brain trickery.  Sometimes I feel I want a product to work so badly that I almost convince myself it does.  The POREfessional was one of those products.

I stopped using it briefly and kept up my search for that Holy Grail.  Nothing seemed to help.  I was greeted every morning by my gaping pores, who I swear were laughing all the way to the bank.  My face, in return, looked like this:


Are you feeling sorry for me yet?

About a month ago, I was watching a You Tube video (as I am wont to do), and one of my gurus told me the secret to the POREfessional is to tap the product on your skin instead of smoothing it on like lotion.  Tapping it on will fill in the holes, as smoothing it on merely smears it around haphazardly.  And I do not have time for haphazard when I have a pore emergency, trust me.  So I thought I’d give the POREfessional one more try.

Tap, tap, tap, tap, tap … and lo and behold.  The clouds parted, the sun came out, and angels began to sing.  It worked.  I present to you, before and after:


Photo taken no more than 15 seconds apart, no filter, same lighting.  See?  Flat-out miracle.  That’s all I can say about that.

The whole point of my post is to teach  you what I’ve learned.  If you’ve been  having not so much success with the efficacy of the POREfessional, try the tapping thing.  It made a world of difference.  Granted, my pores do not disappear completely, but they are much less pronounced and manageable.  I can handle that.

Who’s laughing now?

It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream


Oh, holy moly.

Serious, if you want me to buy your product, you can do a number of things.  Put an “award winner” sticker on it.  Brag about your scientific data.  Swear to beejebus it will fix all my problems.  Only have one of them left on the shelf (always incites a moment of panic and/or urgency).  Or, the most influential of all …

Put your product on YouTube and have a beauty guru sing its praises.

I watch a lot of YouTube.  I subscribe to about 20 channels, all beauty-related, and those girls on there can voodoo-slash-brainwash me like nobody else.  If they say something is amazing, about 2.5 seconds later, I’m writing a check for it.  I am easily persuaded, can I just say that?  I have bought so many things that I knew I didn’t need all because somebody trapped me in their sales wedge.  I mean, I have a Super Shammy, Lint Lizard, Old Brooklyn Lantern, two electric floor sweepers, and Time Life 80s compilation series to prove it.

Recently, I was watching a video and was told about the most amazing cc cream that ever lived.  I’ve never been a fan of bb or cc creams, as they don’t provide much coverage for me.  I have to have coverage.  Those freckles don’t hide themselves, ya know?  But anyway, they were talking about It CosmeticsYour Skin But Better CC+ Cream, a full-coverage cc cream, which instantly  made my ears perk up.  And then they proceeded to go on and on for about 10 minutes on how flawless it makes you look, and I was like … you had me at full-coverage; I go buy this now.


It comes in 5 shades, and I debated between Light and Medium, but finally decided on Medium as that is what my other bb/cc creams are.  Plus I swatched it on my face in the store and it seemed alright.  I also swatched it on my  hand, a makeup sponge, and then swatched a foundation that I already owned to see how closely it matched, etc.  I was doing a science experiment, apparently, but I didn’t want to have to return it back to the store so all that hoopla = var var necessar.

I decided to experiment with the cc cream on a weekend in case I got it disastrously wrong and had to go to work looking like I fell asleep in a tanning bed for 15 years.  I was allowed to skip the moisturizer, primer and SPF application as YSBB included all that, plus an anti-aging serum to boot.  How nice!  Went straight to the cc cream application. The formula is thicker than my normal bb/cc creams, and even my foundations, but I guess that’s expected in a full-coverage product.  However, it applies very smooth and light; does not feel icky whatsoever.

And the coverage?  While I could still see a few of my freckles peeking through, I absolutely loved the finish.  In fact, I did extra staring at myself that day because I couldn’t quite get over how pretty it was.  I’m sure I was on the verge of insane by doing so, but as they always say, insane and adorable cancel each other out. (They really do say that.  Pretty sure, anyway.  Or maybe I made it up.  Either way.)

For a cc cream, this was a pretty dang good product.  It wears like a foundation instead of the typical tinted moisturizer look.  Definitely look into it if you happen to be leisurely walking past the It Cosmetics display at Ulta.  I leisurely do that quite often, so I can’t be the only one, surely?  Do a swatchy-swatch and see for yourself.  And then buy it like stat because I’m the boss of you.

Evil with a Bow – (A Benefit Cosmetics Review)


ImageWell, Merry Christmas to me.

First, let’s back up. This isn’t your queen snack bee, but her twenty-something, makeup enthused, sister. A snackette if you will? Poking my head in to deliver a “guest post”, or in layman’s terms, offer up a few thoughts, but that doesn’t sound near as cool. Now that that’s cleared up, let’s dive in… Just be sure to keep your purse nearby and your best shoppin’ boots because these products are a NEED. Immediately.

Di and I exchanged belated Christmas gifts last weekend. Much to no ones surprise, Ulta gift cards and beauty goodies were received. Now, I have a few “high-end”, uber trendy, makeup items that can be found on the “good” side of Ulta. Ya know what I’m talkin’ about? Not your Revlon Lip Butter side (which is awesome, by the way), but the side that holds palettes of $50 eye colors in all the “best” shades and foundation primers we didn’t even know we needed. So, when my sister unveiled this little gem I was excited to try, but nothing really screamed out. I mean, how exciting could face primer be and a bronzer that had no luster? Thanks, but no thanks.

There it sat on my kitchen table for a couple days. Too busy to really play around with the new products. I work in the casino biz and my mornings are usually tight thanks to needing my running fix and scrambled egg whites. Finally, I peeked into said box and decided to try the That Gal face primer and Hoola bronzer.


Never having used a primer before, I didn’t know what to expect. My face tends to hold a lot of oil, so I digress from extra goop on the ol’ epidermis. The cream is a pale pink color, similar to calamine lotion, and glides on your face like a dream. After applying my tried and true, Estee Lauder Double Wear foundation, and applying its matching powder and bronzer (I’m Estee loyal), my skin revealed a beautiful matte look. Smooth, soft, creamy and distinctly different from my pre-primer days. Never again. Take my word, Benefit knows what they’re doing.

Now, I’ve always been a bronzer gal. The more shimmery the better, or so I thought. I’ve been fairly loyal to Estee Lauder’s bronzer, Bronze Goddess, it’s full of shine, and that fresh June-beach look. So when I took a look at Hoola, only a dark, dewy brown, looked back at me. Um, what? Looks like I’m going to dust clay on my face. How is this supposed to work?

However, I put my trust in this “Hoola” and gave it a go. Umm, glitter is not the answer people. And don’t judge a bronzer by it’s cover. It gave the most natural look. Never orange-y, and the lack of shimmer gave the appearance of true sun-kissed skin that was flawless and tan. I feel like I’ve lost years of quality-bronzing time. Shit. How could I have been so naive? This is a MUST try. Promise. I’ll even bet you my jogging time  and egg whites on it.


Now, in full disclosure, I’ve only tried these two products in the kit so far. And we are 2 for 2 on purchasing their full size versions. My purse can’t take too much too fast, but that’s what the plastic is for, right? That is so wrong and so right in the beauty world. I’ll be sure to report back as I try more.

For now – get yourself some primer, throw away those shimmering bronzers and stock your snack drawer. Di and I have lots coming your way…

Keep it simple.