Earlier this week, after running so low on one of my favorite lipsticks that even frantically scraping at the bottom of the tube with a Q-tip didn’t work, I went rummaging through my makeup drawer to see if I had anything that looked similar. What I found was seven years worth of skin care and near-empty makeup containers that I hadn’t realized I’d been absent-mindedly collecting. As most women know, makeup is only considered “good”-meaning safe to use without the risk of causing a reaction or getting any kind of infection-for so long- and the majority of what I found was waaaaaay past it’s prime. I sat down, went through all of my blushes, eye shadows, mascaras, lipsticks, etc., and tossed what was either empty or expired- which, when I was done- left me with the bare minimum and not much else to choose from.
From there, I headed to the cosmetics Promised Land, Sephora, to do a major splurge to replenish and update my products. I shop at Sephora every couple of months, usually to buy more facial cleanser or moisturizer when I run out, but this trip was a full-blown haul. I went all out and really treated myself with products to get me through the end of the Summer and into the beginning of the Fall.
Here’s what I purchased (from left to right):
1. Clinique Superbalanced Makeup in “Breeze” ($23): I love my BB cream. I really do, but lately I feel I need a bit more coverage. I have combination skin in the Summertime, and this foundation, the only one that truly matches my skin type perfectly, gives me the coverage I need without feeling heavy on my skin or clogging my pores. The long-lasting formula is designed to absorb excess oil in my t-zone, while supplying hydration to my drier areas along my cheeks.
2. Too Faced “Better Than Sex” Mascara ($23): I was reaching for a tube of my usual Diorshow Black Out mascara when this sleek pink container with the provocative name caught my eye. One of the two sweetheart saleswomen who assisted me during my trip was wearing it, and her eyelashes looked amazing. I decided to be bold and try something new, and even though I’ve only been using this mascara for a couple of days- and I’m still getting the hang of the larger brush- I love the results so far. It’s not clumpy, gives a good amount of volume, and is really, really dark- which is the look I love.
3. Laura Mercier Bronzing Powder in “Golden Bronze” ($32): This is one of the few bronzers I’ve tried over the years that doesn’t make me look orange! This pressed powder bronzer, which has a hint of pink in it, contours nicely with my cheekbones, and gives me a natural sun-kissed glow that doesn’t look overwhelming on my fair complexion.
4. Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupté Lipstick in “Extreme Coral” ($34): I love the rich, creamy texture of this lipstick, which applies more like a balm. It hydrates and softens my lips while giving a gorgeous pop of color. All the shades of this particular line were lovely, but I decided to go with this coral, described as being on the reddish side- but looks more pink/peach on me- for the remainder of the Summer.
5. Benefit World Famous Neutrals – Most Glamorous Nudes Ever Eye Shadow Palette ($30): For the remainder of the Summer, I wanted to keep my makeup as light and natural as possible, and wait until the colder months to start using darker, more dramatic eye shadows and lip colors to better match my Fall/Winter wardrobe which tends to be on the deeper side of the color spectrum. I saw this nude palette, which includes four powders and two cream shadows, and snatched it up. I love the colors- which are light and can be mixed and matched in a variety of ways and still look great. This palette is perfect for the final weeks of the season.
6. Bumble & Bumble Surf Spray ($25): This product made my Summer essentials list this year. The more I use it, the more I love it. It just softens my curls and gives my hair those effortless, “just back from the beach” waves I covet so much.
7. Philosophy’s “Hope in a Jar” Moisturizer ($40): When my daily moisturizer, an oil-free, shine-controlling gel, left my skin feeling a little parched, I turned to Philosophy to help give me a moisture boost without causing breakouts. This moisturizer, which feels so light and fluffy and absorbs into the skin quickly, left my skin hydrated, soft, and glowing. So far there hasn’t been any unexpected bumps or blemishes as a result of using it every day- so I think it’s safe to say it’s a keeper!
8. GlamGlow Super-Mud Clearing Treatment Mask ($69): I’ve been in the market for a mask that would help clear out my pores of any deeply-settled makeup, dust, dirt, grime, etc. that my exfoliators and cleansers couldn’t reach, and my prayers were answered with this mud mask. Shortly after I applied this product for the very first time, I could actually see it sinking into my skin. I left it on for a long time, maybe forty minutes or so, and when I finally rinsed it off, small imperfections under my skin had been pulled to the surface where I was able to buff them away with my facial scrub. My face felt cleaner and more refreshed, and my pores looked visibly smaller.
9. NARS Illuminator Stick in “Orgasm” ($39): I swear by “Orgasm” (which sounds funnier than what I intended.) It’s one of NARS best-selling shades of blush, and for good reason- it’s beautiful. A shimmery peachy/pink color that compliments all skin tones, I love to put a little along my cheekbones and brow bone as a highlighter. This conveniently packaged stick applies like a dream and blends easily. It’s by far one of my favorite products.
10. NARS Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder ($34): To seal in my makeup and give me a nice, polished, matte finish, I turn to this translucent powder from NARS. A little goes a long way, so a light dusting will keep your face looking flawless for hours.
11. COVER FX Mattifying Primer with Anti-Acne Treatment ($38): After my moisturizer and before my foundation, I needed a primer that would protect my pores from getting clogged but that would also keep my makeup in place. One of the saleswomen who helped me recommended this product from COVER FX for my skin type and concerns. This primer feels sensationally silky, doesn’t leave any sort of greasy residue on my skin, keeps my makeup in place, and helps to both treat active breakouts while preventing future ones with it’s built in acne-fighting medication. It’s been working really well for me so far.
And there it is! Overall, I’m very happy with the products I selected and have been using- some familiar, and some new to me. I think if I hadn’t done the massive clean-out of my makeup drawer, this purchase probably would have seemed frivolous and unnecessary (even to me), but after going through all of my skin care and cosmetics, and assessing what I had and what I needed, I feel each product I picked up will not only be used (instead of stored and forgotten about,) but are also up-to-date with my current skin tone, type, and complexion- and won’t cause any kind of allergic reaction or infection that some of the older products I threw out could have possibly done.