Tarte Rainforest After Dark review and swatches

Tarte Cosmetics has an exciting new, limited edition palette out called the Rainforest After Dark Eye and Cheek Palette ($38).  This is a wonderful palette with a beautiful range of shades inspired by dusk in the rainforest.  I had high expectations when Tarte sent this to us, and I was not disappointed!

tarte rainforest after dark...the box is even textured like snake skin

tarte rainforest after dark…the box is even textured like snake-skin

tarte rainforest after dark

tarte rainforest after dark

The packaging is gorgeous, with a golden snake design and a purple snake-skin textured box.  Inside, the palette is a round, CD size palette emblazoned with the snake and a purple jeweled eye.  It has a large round mirror that is big enough to reflect your entire face.  Nice!

one blush, one bronzer, one highlighter, and six eyeshadows

one blush, one bronzer, one highlighter, and six eyeshadows

tarte rainforest 5tarte rainforest 3

The products inside include one blush, one highlighter, one bronzer, and six eyeshadows.  The unique thing about Tarte powder products is color-correcting colored clay.  The rose clay helps to soothe skin, vanilla clay controls oil, and gold clay moisturizes.

unleashed blush

unleashed blush

champagne highlighter

champagne highlighter

park ave princess bronzer

park ave princess bronzer

left to right:  champagne, unleased, park ave princess

left to right: champagne, unleased, park ave princess

The Unleashed blush is a pretty plum matte pink.  It has terrific staying power and is such a flattering shade.  Champagne is a gorgeous highlighter, just be sure to buff it well – that’s what turns it into a flattering glow.  I actually use this on my eyes as a brow shade, too.  And Park Avenue Princess is a perfect bronzer, a buttery satin warm gold brown that looks terrific on almost everyone.

The eyeshadows are just to die for.  The texture is buttery soft, the pigmentation is wonderful, and the shades are beautiful. Three are golden browns, and three are pinky purples.

left to right:  don't turn a-brown, tan-gled up in you, up to no gold

left to right: don’t turn a-brown, tan-gled up in you, up to no gold

left to right:  up to no gold, tan-gled up in you, don't turn a-brown

left to right: up to no gold, tan-gled up in you, don’t turn a-brown

First up, the golden brown shades.  up to no gold is a shimmery gold with a velvet texture.  I think this is my favorite of them all, it really makes my brown eyes POP. tan-gled up in you is a matte tan that goes on so smooth, I almost can’t believe it’s a matte eyeshadow.  don’t turn a-brown is a dark brown with tiny golden shimmer.

left to right:  bare to explore, make a mauve, plum away with me

left to right: bare to explore, make a mauve, plum away with me

left to right:  bare to explore, make a mauve, plum away with me

left to right: bare to explore, make a mauve, plum away with me

Next, the pinky purples.  bare to explore is a matte pink beige that has a silky texture and is a great base shade.  On busy mornings, I throw this on as a wash with some black eyeliner and I am good to go.  make a mauve is a satin plum mauve that is even prettier in person.  plum away with me  is a shimmery dark plum with silver sparkle.  Gorgeous.

Included with the palette is a card with instructions for two different eye looks, the Afterhours Adventure, ‘inspired by the deep orchid hues of dusk, this spellbinding evening look will unleash your inner bombshell as you flawlessly take on the night‘; and Seductive Sunrise, ‘ignite your wild side anytime with this sultry, yet subtle everyday look.

Rainforest After Dark definitely give you everything you need for day or night, subtle or sultry.  Pick it up before it’s sold out!  - Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration

Vapour Organic Beauty – eco beauty done right

Vapour Organic Beauty

Vapour Organic Beauty

Vapour Organic Beauty creates products that they say are good enough to eat. According to the USDA “Vapour is the only color cosmetic manufactured to the USDA’s Organic Food Standard.” vapour beauty usdaThat’s saying something but there’s a lot more to say about this company that is made entirely from certified organic plants, vitamins and minerals. They are cruelty free, sustainable and ethical. And they make great products if the 5 lovelies they sent, seen above, are any indication of what they can do.

I’ve reviewed a few other Vapour Beauty products and liked using them but the newest ones I have are even better than before. I’ve been wearing them a lot and getting a lot of pleasure from doing so.

Aura Multi-Use Blush sticks in Charisma and Intrique

Aura Multi-Use Blush sticks in Charisma and Intrique

My absolute favorites are the AURA MULTI-USE BLUSH STICKS. That’s no surprise to anyone who knows me. I’d much rather use a cream blush product than a powder one. I find creams to be much more natural looking and easier for me to control. With a powder blush I never quite know how much pressure to put on a brush and I can end up with too much. But with these AURA Multi-Use Blush Sticks I quickly learned how much to use and I find them exceptionally easy to apply and blend.

Aura Multi-Use

Aura Multi-Use

The two that I have – Charisma and Intrique – are unfortunately not available at the current time but they’ll give you an idea of what these are all about. The colors that are available are stunning (see beauty.com for great swatches). These aren’t just blush sticks, they are multiple use so you can use them safely on lips and eyes as well.

There is no fragrance to these, they are silky smooth and glide on beautifully, and they last well throughout the day.

Vapour swatches: Solar Translucent Bronzer, Charisma & Intrique Aura blush sticks

Vapour swatches: Solar Translucent Bronzer, Charisma & Intrique Aura blush sticks

SOLAR TRANSLUCENT BRONZER comes in 3 shades; from lightest to darkest they are Mirage (shown), Simmer and Spicy. I personally love the translucent quality of this bronzer since I am not a bronzing queen like my dear blog partner Lisa. I like a touch of color and I’m able to achieve that with Solar Translucent Bronzer stick in Mirage. Like the Aura sticks this is a cream product and I feel that I can control the amount I use as well as the placement better than I can with a powder product. Plus if I goof, it’s easier to blend down and fix.

Vapour Organic Beauty Solar Translucent Bronzer in Mirage

Vapour Organic Beauty Solar Translucent Bronzer in Mirage

Solar is infused with sun-specific super antioxidants Pomegranate, Green Tea and Acai Berry, and nourishes with a soothing organic Calendula Flower and vitamin-rich organic Shea Butter. This isn’t orange on me even though my lousy photography makes it look that way. Instead it’s a light tan that works well on my paleness. It’s described as a “pale gold that brings a kiss of the sun to pale skin”.

SIREN is the name for Vapour’s lipsticks and some of these shades really fit that description. Imagine my surprise when I opened the package to find this lipstick:

Vapour Beauty Siren lipstick in Dare

Vapour Beauty Siren lipstick in Dare

DARE is a rich plummy brown that looks almost black in the tube. I’m the girl that wears light lips. So how do I review a product that is this dark and vampy? EASY PEASY LADIES!! I applied it and then applied the gorgeous POSSESS lipstick over it and the angels sang. (Well maybe they hummed a little.)

Vapour lipsticks in Dare and Possess

Vapour lipsticks in Dare and Possess

POSSESS is a color that I absolutely love. It’s called a “sexy adult pink” and on my lips it turns a perfect soft mauve. It’s the type of color I grab when I want to look my best but still natural. When it’s worn over Dare it becomes a deeper version of itself. SIREN LIPSTICKS are unscented beauties. While Dare will only get used occasionally, Possess has a permanent place in my makeup bag. They have a creamy jojoba, pomegranate and camellia oil base so they don’t feel dry.

My comeaway impression of VAPOUR ORGANIC BEAUTY is that this is a very special brand of organic makeup. They are so sure of their products that they even sell samples of many of them. They are confident that once you try the textures and colors that you’ll come back. I’m confident of that too. Have you tried Vapour lately? — Marcia

*sent for editorial consideration

One day sale! tarte Shades of Clay Collection, February 4 on QVC

The tarte Shades of Clay Collection, a one day only sale on QVC, is definitely one of the best sales/collections I have ever come across. The Today’s Special Value® is only available at its special price until 11:59 p.m. PT on February 4, 2014 while quantity remains. The TSV Price is $59.96, and the total value of this terrific collection is $202.00.

tarte shades of clay collection

tarte shades of clay collection

inside the shades of clay collection

inside the shades of clay collection

The Shades of Clay Collection includes:

  • 0.68-oz colored clay SPF 15 liquid foundation and 0.51-oz colored clay CC primer in Fair, Light, Medium, Tan, or Deep
  • 0.31-oz clay blush bronzer in Pink Bronze
  • 0.27-oz LipSurgence Lip Gloss in True Love, a sheer raspberry shade
  • 0.10-oz clay eyeliner in Black
  • 0.24-fl oz lights, camera, LASHES mascara in Black
  • Bamboo foundation brush
  • Bonus Makeup bag
all the goodies inside

all the goodies inside

I have been using every single item in this collection every day since receiving it and it gets an A+ from me. This set is a seven-piece collection that features colored clay for a whole routine that creates a natural, glowy look. The set is pretty much everything you need for a full face of gorgeousness. It’s fantastic.

I also found a little gift inside, a crystal stone necklace from @Akitching ‘s jewelry line, Crystal Cactus. Wow, is this stunning!!

crystal stone necklace from @Akitching ‘s jewelry line, Crystal Cactus

crystal stone necklace from @Akitching ‘s jewelry line, Crystal Cactus

wearing my gorgous necklace

wearing my gorgeous Crystal Cactus necklace

Amethyst is my birthstone, so I was really happy to find this jewel inside that huge raspberry makeup bag.

What else was inside?  The truly unique colored clay CC primer.

CC Primer

CC Primer

CC Primer

CC Primer that includes color correcting lavender and green

CC Primer swatch

CC Primer swatch

Mine is in shade light. This is a color-correcting stick that neutralizes imperfections, brightens the complexion, and primes skin for foundation. Just smooth it on and then tap it in with fingers. The CC primer melts right in and creates a perfect canvas for foundation application.

Once you have primed with the CC primer, next up is the colored clay liquid foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15 (a World-wide Launch, by the way!) using the bamboo liquid foundation brush.

colored clay liquid foundation

colored clay liquid foundation

colored clay liquid foundation - see the mesh?

colored clay liquid foundation – see the mesh?

swatch of Light shade

swatch of Light shade

bamboo foundation brush

bamboo liquid foundation brush

The colored clay foundation with broad spectrum SPF 15 coverage gives medium but buildable coverage with a satin finish. The bamboo foundation brush is stellar – just press in onto the mesh sifter inside the foundation container then buff onto skin, going from the center out.

Follow that with the colored clay bronzer blush in pink bronze (yet another World-wide Launch).

colored clay bronzer blush in pink bronze

colored clay bronzer blush in pink bronze

colored clay bronzer blush up close

colored clay bronzer blush up close

colored clay bronzer blush in pink bronze swatched

colored clay bronzer blush in pink bronze swatched

I can hear all the oohs and aahs and this beaut certainly deserves it! It’s a combination of pinks and golds that warms the complexion and adds a natural glow. Dust it all over for instant warmth, and layer it on the cheeks as a blush.

Moving on up to the eyes, line with the colored clay eyeliner in black (woohoo, another World-wide Launch!) followed by two coats of the stupendous lights, camera, LASHES™ 4-in-1 mascara in Black.

mascara and eyeliner

lights, camera, lashes 4 in 1 mascara and cc eyeliner

CC eyeliner in black

CC eyeliner in black

eye look with eyeliner and mascara

eye look with CC eyeliner and lights, camera, LASHES mascara

For my eye look above, I am wearing a wash of MAC Painterly. I defined and lined my top lash line and waterline with the new colored clay eye liner in Black, which is a velvety eyeliner that truly glides on easily. Then, I finished with two coats of  lights, camera, LASHES(TM) 4-in-1 mascara. This is a seriously fantastic mascara, one of my top mascaras ever.  It gives great length, volume, and curl, plus it never smears on me. Love it.

The final touch for your tarte Shades of Clay look? The golden raspberry LipSurgence™ lip gloss in true love (can I get a World-wide Launch here?)

lip gloss

LipSurgence lip gloss in true love

eyeliner and lip gloss swatched

CC eyeliner and LipSurgence true love swatched

lip gloss on

true love lip gloss on

LipSurgence(TM) Lip Gloss in true love is a wonderfully flattering sheer raspberry shade with tiny golden shimmers. It has great slip and feels terrific on – this has found a permanent home in my purse.

My tarte shades of clay FOD

My tarte shades of clay FOD

I think every product is a winner and the shades are incredibly flattering. Plus, at this price you just can’t go wrong! Set your timer, leave yourself a note, do something so you don’t miss this sale. Again, the Today’s Special Value® is only available at its special price until 11:59 p.m. PT on February 4, 2014 while quantity remains. You will be glad you remembered!  - Lisa

*pr samples

tarte Holiday 2013: Off the Cuff

My goodness, tarte sure has some out-of-this-world holiday sets this year! Flying off the shelves is Off the Cuff ($42), a Sephora exclusive that is a $110 value ($95 of which is cosmetics). Unfortunately it looks like Off the Cuff is sold out online right now. I sure do hope they get more in stock because this is a terrific holiday gift option.

Off the Cuff

Off the Cuff

the cuff

the cuff

Off the Cuff is a pretty blush palette that comes wrapped with a bracelet. The bracelet is a black faux-leather cuff with a gold bow. There are two different closure snaps on the back which is great for different wrist sizes.

the palette

the palette – four blushes and a bronzer

up close

left to right:  Crave, Dazzled, Darling, Dollface, Park Ave Princess

The black and gold palette houses four (almost) full size blushes and one (almost) full size bronzer. The shades include Crave, a matte warm pink/coral; Dazzled, a shimmery satin berry rose shade that is part of the permanent collection; Darling, a matte melon; Dollface, a matte cool pink that is part of the permanent collection; and Park Ave Princess bronzer, a satin warm gold brown that is also part of the permanent collection.

left to right:

left to right:  Crave, Dazzled, Darling, Dollface

Park Ave Princess swatch

Park Ave Princess swatch

I like that this has a few ‘new’ shades plus the permanent shades are some of my favorites. I adore tarte powder blushes and bronzers because they are so pigmented. It doesn’t take much to get great color that lasts all day.

Keep an eye out for this set – even if it’s sold out online, I am sure there are some still available at Sephora stores. How can you resist such gorgeous shades all wrapped up in some bling??  - Lisa

*pr sample

Neutrogena healthy look cosmetics

Neutrogena

Neutrogena

Have you heart the latest news that Julie Bowen, aka Claire Dunphy of Modern Family, has been named (again) as the face of Neutrogena? I think of Neutrogena as a clear face cosmetic company. I don’t think of smokey eyes and bright red hot lips with Neutrogena. My impression has always been of a look like Julie Bowen represents. Good choice on both their parts.

julie bowenI can just picture her wearing the products that Neutrogena sent to test out. Subtle yet clear colors that bring out your best looks. With these products you don’t see your makeup, you see your face at its best.

Neutrogena Blush & Bronzer in Natural Glow

Neutrogena Blush & Bronzer in Natural Glow

The first product I want to share is Neutrogena’s Healthy Skin Custom Glow Blush & Bronzer. I have this in the lightest shade, #10 Natural Glow. It comes in 4 color combinations (also Posie Glow, Rosy Glow and Raisin Glow) so you should be able to find a combination that’s great for you. I couldn’t have asked for a better shade for me since everything about Natural Glow is understated and effortless. Back when I did my Top Ten bronzer post I mostly had to pick wishlist items rather than products from my collection. If I’d had this Blush & Bronzer then, I’d have had one of my choices.

Neutrogena Blush & Bronzer in Natural Glow

Neutrogena Blush & Bronzer in Natural Glow

Natural Glow

Natural Glow

While the blush isn’t a typical “blush” shade it works perfectly with the bronzer. Both give me warmth without turning me orange. When I am looking wan this is a great combination to use. I can add a little pink or peach blush on the apples of my cheeks and I’m set. I haven’t seen many drugstore bronzers that weren’t sparkly or fragranced which makes this is a great choice. Neutrogena Healthy Skin Custom Glow Blush & Bronzer retails for $11.50 but you know you’ll find it for less.

Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Sticks

Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Sticks

Neutrogena also makes my lazy girl favorite – lipstick crayons. I’m a huge fan of this kind of product since you get glossy color that’s easy to apply and hard to mess up. Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Sticks ($8.49) come in 8 shades. You can find these by number (10 to 80) which gives you an idea of the depth of color. But even better they name their shades which can be a rarity. I have #30 Sweet Watermelon, #50 Warm Caramel, and #60 Soft Raspberry.

Neutrogena Sweet Watermelon, Warm Caramel and Soft Raspberry

Neutrogena Sweet Watermelon, Warm Caramel and Soft Raspberry

All of these are easy to wear and impart a lot of moisture. According to Neutrogena after 3 days of wearing MoistureSmooth your lips would be softer and smoother. They contain fruit extracts including mango and shea butter. They have a very fruity fragrance which lasts. I’m a lip biter so these only last about 2 hours before I notice the color is gone but they are easy to reapply. And they are twist up so they are great to put in your makeup bag.

Neutrogena Moisture Smooth in Sweet Watermelon, Warm Caramel and Soft Raspberry

Neutrogena Moisture Smooth in Sweet Watermelon, Warm Caramel and Soft Raspberry

I’ve used Neutrogena Unscented Facial Cleansing Bar for years and always had confidence in the company. Now I can start exploring their cosmetics with the same confidence. What Neutrogena products are your favorite? Let me know in the comments since I’m feeling a shopping spree coming on! — Marcia

*sent for possible review

 

 

Prolonging my summer with Rayito de Sol 2-in-1 Sport Bronzing Sunscreen Gel

I admit it…I am missing summer already. I am just a summer girl. I love the beach and the fresh air. I love glowing, sun-kissed skin. I miss it…so I am getting my summer fix from Rayito de Sol.

Rayito de Sol

Rayito de Sol 2-in-1 Sport Bronzing Sunscreen Gel SPF 15

I had heard fantastic things about this line, which just happens to be the top sun care brand in Latin America. So I was very intrigued when they sent the BIZ their 2-in-1 Sport Bronzing Sunscreen Gel SPF 15 ($14.99) to test.

Rayito de Sol is based in Argentina and it’s a family owned company that has been in business for over 90 years. This line is available in 15 different countries including the U.S., Argentina, Mexico, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Paraguay. Rayito de Sol specializes in products that instantly create that ‘iconic Latin glow’. They are the first line with products that give immediate color plus SPF protection. They have wonderful looking products like lotions and sprays and I was happy to try the gel.

swatch

My initial swatch…it looks so dark!

swatch smoothed out

swatch smoothed out…still a little scary

after

after smoothing in, skin looking fantastic and glowy

The 2-in-1 Sport Bronzing Sunscreen Gel SPF 15 I tried is the Instant Medium Color. It also comes in Natural Color, which I am assuming is a lighter shade. The initial swatch looked soooo dark, I was a bit alarmed…but it definitely lightened up when I smoothed it in. My skin tone is somewhere in between light and medium, and this gel gives me a slightly deeper color with a lot more ‘glow’ than I normally have. The gel has an interesting texture that is quite pleasant. It has lots of slip at first and it feels slightly wet for a few minutes before drying down completely. Plus it has a cooling effect that lasts for about 20 minutes. I use it on both my face and body with excellent results.

Even if it’s no longer summer, we all still need sunscreen. Why not get a beautiful Latin glow while you are at it? All the wonderful things I read about this line were true, I was not disappointed. They’ve got the goods and I can’t wait to try the other products. And some really great news – right now there is a 50% off coupon for online orders – just use the code 50off at checkout. Keep that summer glow and stay protected from those harmful rays with Rayito de Sol!  - Lisa

*pr sample

Lisa’s Top Ten Self Tanners

Self tanners have come a long way, baby. Years ago they were difficult to apply, smelled horrific, and turned you an unnatural looking orange. There are some truly great options out there today, options so great no one should be afraid to faux tan! I put my self tanners into two categories:  one night stands (these only last until you wash them off) and marriage material (these give you more committment – at least one week). Here are my top ten self tanners. The first five are my favorite one night stands and the next five are my favorite marriages.

1.  Gleam Body Radiance

Gleam Body Radiance

Gleam Body Radiance

Four fantastic color options, this one night stand is also the perfect remedy for any bad ‘marriages’.

2.  Red Carpet Kolour

Red Carpet Kolour

Red Carpet Kolour

Oh my this is a terrific one night stand…it makes any skin flaws disappear with beautiful tint and soft shimmer.

3.  Le Metier Bella Bronzer

Le Metier Bella Bronzer

Le Metier Bella Bronzer

The best liquid bronzer for the face and decolletage, hands down.

4.  Tarte Maracuja Rainforest Glow

Tarte Maracuja Rainforest Glow

Tarte Maracuja Rainforest Glow

A beautiful golden tan that is waterproof (hello swimming!) but not soap proof (hello one night stand!).

5.  Carlene K Shine Bronzer Body Glow

Carlene K Shine Body Glow

Carlene K Shine Body Glow

There’s a reason this is a favorite of Hollywood starlets – it’s gorgeous, easy to use, and I love the beautiful golden shimmer.

6.  Jan Marini Bioglycolic Sunless Self Tanner

Jan Marini

Jan Marini Bioglycolic Sunless Self Tanner

I love this especially as a face tanner.  The color adjusts to your skin so it’s extremely natural looking.

7.  Supergoop Self Tanning Sunscreen Mousse

Supergoop SPF 20 Gradual Self Tanning Sunscreen Mousse

Supergoop SPF 20 Gradual Self Tanning Sunscreen Mousse

This sunscreen is also a gradual self tanner, which is a great way to build up to that commitment.

8.  Tan Towels

Tan Towels take away those tan lines!

Tan Towels take away those tan lines!

See the tan lines? Tan Towels are a super convenient way to make them a thing of the past – even if you have the tan lines of a blogger.

9.  Make Me Smooth You Glow, Girl

Make Me Smooth You Glow, Girl

Make Me Smooth You Glow, Girl

I buy this self tanner over and over because it gives gorgeous color and I can get it in any scent I want. My most frequent pick is Day at the Beach, which is a “Coconut infused scent potion that will take you back to lazy days spent at the beach.”

10.  Beautisol Summer Glow Dark Tan Body Self-Tanning Lotion

Beautisol Summer Glow Dark Tan Body Self Tanning Lotion

Beautisol Summer Glow Dark Tan Body Self Tanning Lotion

This is a marriage, all right – it takes some time but it applies beautifully, gives deep dark color, and is total marriage material.

Happy faux tanning!  - Lisa