It's time to share the products I loved discovering and using throughout the month of November. Yay! And while last month's favorites included mostly drugstore products, this month has a high end focus, as I had a chance to use some goodies I'd pick up in the summer and early fall. I have quite a few this month so let's get started!
IT Cosmetics Brow Power Universal Eyebrow Pencil Universal Taupe ($24.00)
I received the Brow Power eyebrow pencil in the summer as a complimentary gift with my first Beautylish purchase. I admit to being skeptical when I opened the package and saw it was a "universal shade." I didn't know if I would use it, thinking it might not be light enough for my eyebrows now that my hair is blonde. But I decided to give the Brow Power a try when I ran out of the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz ($21.00) pencil I was using at the time (also a favorite for my eyebrows).
I'm glad I did as I've come to love this eyebrow pencil. It has a flattened, oval shape tip, which means you can get a thin or thick line depending on how you hold it, and according to the product description, the shade transforms to your eyebrow color. (More beauty magic? Nope, just some good old-fashioned award-winning technology.) It also has a spoolie on the other end, so it's easy for me to quickly run the color through my brows in the morning, filling them in where I need a little extra love, brush everything into place, and follow with a little bit of Anastasia Beverly Hills Eyebrow Gel ($22.00). I've bought a few other eyebrow pencils since I started using Brow Power and yet it's the one I grab time and time again to use in the morning.
Laura Mercier Eye Art Artist's Palette ($55.00)
When the first version of this palette came out a few years ago, I fell in love with the colors and immediately placed it on my Sephora favorites list; however, I wasn't sure at the time I wanted to drop the money for it. And of course, once I did decide to go ahead and buy it, it was no longer available. So, when Sephora started carrying this new version in the spring, I put it on my favorites list again, but still hesitated, mostly because I have so many palettes I wasn't sure I could justify it. I changed my mind, though, when one of my favorite YouTube makeup artists, Cora from Vintageortacky, reviewed the palette and used it in a tutorial. After that, I knew I had to have it.
Luckily, this palette is super versatile and I've already used it quite a bit because it's perfect for simple, yet beautiful, workday looks. There are 12 shades total, some cool and some warm, with matte, satin, and shimmery textures represented, all super pigmented and blendable. My go-to colors? Vanilla Nuts as a base, Fresco or Plum Smoke in the crease or as a transition shade, and Truffle or Violet Ink to warm everything up. I also love Bamboo for a little bit of shimmer on the lid. I definitely recommend this palette to everyone, and especially for green-eyed ladies like myself. And the sturdy packaging makes it ideal for travel.
Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder ($22.50 .33 oz/$37.00 1 oz)
I like to use a loose powder to set my concealer and cut down on my T-zone shine after applying foundation and had been using the e.l.f. High Definition Powder ($6.00). As often happens, though, I wanted to try something new and decided on this setting powder after hearing rave reviews about it in various YouTube makeup tutorials. I went with the smaller size to test it and as with the Laura Mercier eyeshadow palette, it's definitely worth the money. This powder is very lightweight, yet the coverage is wonderful and fairly long lasting, and doesn't give me the white cast like some other translucent powders can do. It applies beautifully with the puff it comes with or a sponge or big, fluffy brush. This one has become almost an everyday go-to as well.
MAC Cosmetics Matte Lipstick Instigator ($17.00)
I got it into my head at the beginning of the fall that I needed an aubergine or eggplant-colored lipstick, something so rich and purple-y, it might almost look black. I found what I was looking for while browsing through the lipsticks a couple of months ago at my local MAC store. I picked up a matte lipstick called Instigator, which is described as a deep blackened plum, and after swatching it, knew it was the one. I hadn't worn matte lipstick from MAC before and was pleasantly surprised to find out it applies relatively smoothly without a lot of patchiness. And the color is just beautiful. I wore Instigator quite a bit right around Halloween and have a feeling it might get some love during Christmas and New Year's as well.
Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler ($20.00)
I have very weird eyelashes. They're not particularly long and the lashes near the inner corner of my eyes are straight, but then start to curl the closer they get to the outer corner of my eye. This is one of the reasons I always use an eyelash curler before I put on my mascara. I'd been using the same drugstore eyelash curler for years and decided to splurge a little and treat myself to a higher end version. I'd read in several articles that the eyelash curler from Shu Uemura is one of the very best on the market and after using it for the last few weeks, I know why. Wow. Just wow. This curler has seriously stepped up my eyelash game. I can't really explain the mechanics behind why it seems to work so much better than anything I've used in the past (magic?), but it does. Because it evens out my weird eyelash discrepancy, it makes applying mascara so much easier.
And please, for the love of all that is good about makeup, do not, I repeat, do not use an eyelash curler after you've put on your mascara. It defeats the entire purpose of using an eyelash curler to begin with and you will most likely rip out some of your eyelashes along the way.
Smashbox 24 HR Photo Finish Shadow Primer ($20.00 .41 oz)
I've been a little obsessed with trying new primers over the last few months and got a deluxe-size sample of this eyeshadow primer as part of the Smashbox Try It Kit - Primer Authority ($28.00). I didn't think I would ever be able to find anything else to compare to the eyeshadow primers I love and use almost everyday, which include Urban Decay Original Primer Potion ($20.00 .33 oz) and Too Faced Shadow Insurance ($20.00 .35 oz), but as usual, I was wrong. As with all eyeshadow primers, the Smashbox primer helps prevent my eyeshadow from creasing and also to last all day, but I think I might even like it more than the others. It seems slightly waterproof somehow, which is great since my eyes always water. And as you can see, you get a little bit more primer from Smashbox than you do the others for the same price.
With the holidays around the corner, all of these products would make lovely gifts for the makeup lover in your life. Or even better if want to buy a little something for yourself. What were some of your favorites this past month? Let me know in the comments below!
Yours in beauty,
Lady Bon Vivant