Paula’s Choice Blush It On Contour Palette review and swatches

Paula's Choice Blush It On Contour Palette

Paula’s Choice Blush It On Contour Palette

I probably recommend the Paula’s Choice line more than any other, but honestly mostly for skin care. I have had a love/hate relationship with her color cosmetics. Cream Concealer? Not for me. Foundation? None of them are my favorites. Lip gloss? Nothing special.  Some of the color cosmetics are fantastic though – love love love the Bright & Berry Lip Collection, Brow Defining Cream, and Eyeshadow Palette.

I recently placed an order for about 10 of the Gentle Touch Makeup Remover – it’s so good I get anxious when I am down to five bottles! – and at the last-minute decided to add in the Blush It On Contour Palette. This is Limited Edition and costs $36. I was a bit uneasy spending that amount when I haven’t loved Paula’s blushes in the past, but I am happy I took the plunge and I’ll bet you might want to invest after reading my review.

Paula's Choice Blush It On Contour Palette

Paula’s Choice Blush It On Contour Palette:  top row left to right – Pearl, Delicate Coral, Peony; bottom row left to right:  Bronze, Dusty Rose, Soft Mauve

Prior incarnations of blush from Paula didn’t do much for me. They just weren’t pigmented enough and didn’t last on my blush-eating skin. However, this palette is a wonderful improvement from the previous blush formulas. The Blush It On Contour Palette has six shades for highlighting, contouring, and blushing like a school girl. The formula is silky smooth, blends in beautifully, and has a satin matte finish. The colors are long-wearing with minimal fading, and they don’t oxidize throughout the day.

Paula's Choice Blush It On Contour Palette

Paula’s Choice Blush It On Contour Palette left to right:  Pearl, Delicate Coral, Peony

The highlighting shade is Pearl, which swatches pretty dramatic but has a beautiful, glowy effect on that looks very natural. Paula is typically anti-shimmer yet pro-luminescence, and this highlighter definitely delivers. I love it on the tops of my cheekbones for a youthful glow, as well as down the center of my nose with the Bronze shade lightly brushed down the sides to give a ‘thinning out’ effect.

Delicate Coral is a very pretty coral shade that is gorgeous on warm skin tones and deeper skin shades. I love this when I have faux-tanned my skin into the medium range; it looks like summertime and sandy beaches to me.

Peony is a very pretty medium pink without shimmer. It is a perfect everyday shade for work, and it layers nicely for a more dramatic evening look.

Paula's Choice Blush It On Contour Palette

Paula’s Choice Blush It On Contour Palette left to right:  Bronze, Soft Rose, Dusty Mauve

Moving on down to the bottom row, Bronze provides the ‘contour’ in the palette name. This is a soft but versatile contour/bronzer. I like that it’s matte – I think too much sparkle and shimmer ruins some otherwise terrific contour products. I love this just underneath my blush to give my cheekbones more definition and, as I mentioned, it’s awesome paired with Pearl for thinning out the nose.

Soft Rose is a light pink that pale complexions will adore. It’s probably too light for any skin tone darker than medium, but this is a great ballerina pink that is just tad bit peachy.

Dusty Mauve is my favorite of the blush shades. It’s a deeper berry pink that might be a tad too dark for you pale princesses, but is amazing on any shade darker than porcelain. It’s the most dramatic of the shades so go easy with it and build up to the color you want.

Paula's Choice Blush It On Contour Palette

Paula’s Choice Blush It On Contour Palette

Paula's Choice Blush It On Contour Palette

Paula’s Choice Blush It On Contour Palette Pearl and Soft Mauve

If I had my druthers, I would love for Paula to add two more shades to this palette – one more highlighter with less pink tint and more sheen, and one more bronzer in a deeper shade. But that’s really nitpicking.

While none of the colors are dramatic, they all give beautiful, natural washes of color that last all day. This is a great workhorse palette that you will find yourself reaching for time and time again. If you haven’t ordered from Paula’s Choice before, I have a code for $10 off your first order, just click HERE.  If you are looking for a great new blush palette I highly recommend this one – get it before it’s gone.  – Lisa

*purchased by me

Hard Candy is so 2016 – strobing, fierce lips, and glowy primer

Hard Candy Pure Defense Primer Serum, Fierce Effects Lipsticks, Strobing Kit

Hard Candy Pure Defense Primer Serum, Fierce Effects Lipsticks, Strobing Kit and Pencil

If you are looking for some up to the minute products with a price that’s unbelievable, Hard Candy is your best friend. Hard Candy is exclusive to Walmart and Walmart.com. so I think you should sneak over to the beauty section when you are buying your veggies. Hard Candy will only make a little bump in your budget, not even a dent. I have 3 types of products that were sent that you need to know about.

Hard Candy Sheer Envy Pore-Defense Primer Serum

Hard Candy Sheer Envy Pore-Defense Primer Serum

Hard Candy Sheer Envy Pore-Defense Primer Serum has been on my face daily since receiving it. What do you hear about all the time online now? Color Correcting!! That’s what every company is is bringing out and what we are all fascinated with. When I first started using this I had a surprise:

Hard Candy Sheer Envy Pore-Defense Primer Serum

Hard Candy Sheer Envy Pore-Defense Primer Serum

It’s a teal blue just like the bottle. Why teal? To brighten your face. The Pore Defense Primer Serum does a little bit of everything. First it contains pore-tightening actives and astringents that absorb excess oil. There’s micro-fine powder in the serum that you won’t notice but your skin will because it blurs fine lines while color correcting. I find this gives a nice glow to my skin that doesn’t look greasy. Plus it helps my foundation last! I can promise you that this $8 primer will be among my favorites for the year.

ULTIMATE STROBING KIT AND STROBING HIGHLIGHTING PENCIL

Hard Candy LOOK PRO! ULTIMATE Strobing Kit and Strobing Highlighting Duo Stick

Hard Candy LOOK PRO! ULTIMATE Strobing Kit and Strobing Highlighting Duo Stick

It wouldn’t be 2016 without strobing. In 2014 we called it highlighting but starting late in 2015 everyone started saying strobing. Whatever you call it, the LOOK PRO! ULTIMATE Strobing Kit is perfectly attuned to the times.

This $8 kit has everything you need to do your face: 2 Luminizers, Matte Bronzer, Matte Blush, a tube of Strobing Glow, and a travel size brush. The metallic kit closes firmly so it’s great for home or on-the-go. The colors in it are very flattering. I don’t use bronzers often so to find a light one that is good for some contouring is a pleasure. The color of the blush is peach and very flattering. The two luminizers will complement your look with a subtle radiant glow, nothing flashy. BUT if you want flashy that’s where the tube of Strobing Glow fits in. This gives a nice shimmer without glimmer and livens everything up. Use it on your cheekbones, your cupid’s bow, or to highlight your beautiful eyes.

Hard Candy LOOK PRO! ULTIMATE Strobing Kit Luminizers, Bronzer and Blush

Hard Candy LOOK PRO! ULTIMATE Strobing Kit Luminizers, Bronzer and Blush

Hard Candy Strobing Kit

Hard Candy Strobing Kit

Hard Candy ULTIMATE Strobing Kit Strobing Glow and swatch and Strobing Duo Stick

Hard Candy ULTIMATE Strobing Kit Strobing Glow and swatch and Strobing Duo Stick

For $6 you can purchase the Hard Candy Strobing Highlighting Duo Stick. These two work perfectly together but just as nicely on their own. Use this duo wherever you want to strobe. I like to draw a line down my nose and blend. It’s great to apply to your bottom lip in the middle to help create some depth and glow. The stick is soft and easy to use; it doesn’t wipe away your foundation or blush when you use it either. This Strobing pencil is great to throw in a clutch for a quick touch up too.

Hard Candy LOOK PRO! ULTIMATE Strobing Kit and Strobing Highlighting Duo Stick

Hard Candy LOOK PRO! ULTIMATE Strobing Kit and Strobing Highlighting Duo Stick

Both of these are highly impressive. Take off the name and no one would know that Walmart is your source.

HARD CANDY FIERCE EFFECT LIPSTICK

HARD CANDY FIERCE EFFECT LIPSTICK

HARD CANDY FIERCE EFFECT LIPSTICK

While 2016 is all about matte lipsticks not all of us love that look or the dryness. Matte isn’t the only trend for 2016 though for lips – fierce colors that can create many looks are just as new.

Hard Candy Fierce Effect in Chalkin Pink and Provocative

Hard Candy Fierce Effect in Chalkin Pink and Provocative

Hard Candy Fierce Effect in Chalkin Pink and Provocative

Hard Candy Fierce Effect in Chalkin Pink and Provocative

These 18 shades of lipstick give you a moist looking lip with lots of shine. You just need the lipstick, no gloss to top it off, to look like you have luscious lips. They come in 18 shades (not all are online): Chalkin Pink, Provocative, Show Off, Galactica, Newly Berried, Prowler, Glisten to Me, Thunder, Black Diamond, Slylac, Heart Breaker, Sky’s the Limit, Nudist, Seduced, Sunshine, Night Queen, Jealousy, and Virtual Reality. The pigmentation is off the wall.

Hard Candy Fierce Effect in Thunder and Slylac

Hard Candy Fierce Effect in Thunder and Slylac

Hard Candy Fierce Effect in Thunder and Slylac

Hard Candy Fierce Effect in Thunder and Slylac

There is a lot to like with the Fierce Effects lipsticks –

  • only $5 each
  • Highly pigmented shades that don’t need a second coat
  • Mix and match colors to create “fierce effects” with them
  • Easy to blend two shades together to create a new shade
  • Fierce Effects lipsticks are infused with argan oil
  • Moist and easy to apply, no need for a gloss

These are scented though but it’s not offensive to me since it’s a bubblegum fragrance and it doesn’t last too long. In spite of the fragrance I like that you can create an ombre lip or your own shade.

So 2016! Knowing Hard Candy it’s only the beginning. They’ve got 9 more months to come out with fresh, innovative products that are up to the minute and so wallet friendly. Which of these would you most want to use? — Marcia

*sent for consideration

Makeup Wars shines with favorite Highlighters and Illuminators

Favorite highlighters & illuminators from Tom Ford, Hourglass, IT Cosmetics, Becca

Favorite highlighters & illuminators from Tom Ford, Hourglass, IT Cosmetics, Becca

MAKEUP WARS is sharing some of the highlighters and illuminators that make us twinkle and shine, that make us glimmer and shimmer, that make us excited to be women in 2016.

Not every one of my highlighters is shown here, just the 3 newest and one all time favorite. There are many more that I really like but some just stand out more than others. Introducing 4 of mine: TOM FORD MOODLIGHT, HOURGLASS AMBIENT IRIDESCENT STROBE LIGHT, IT COSMETICS HELLO LIGHT CREME ILLUMINATOR, and BECCA MOONSTONE.

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight ($80) is one gorgeous illuminator. I resisted this for so long but the more I read about it and saw photos the more I desired it. This is amazingly subtle even if the photo doesn’t look that way. You are able to control the amount of illumination, easily building it up from an understated amount that brightens and lightens your face to a shimmery amount that gives more of a bronzing highlight. Tom Ford Moodlight (sometimes seen as Moonlight on a website) can be used separately or together. Use a big fluffy brush for an all over sweep of illumination or a blush brush to emphasize certain areas of your face.

Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light

Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light

There are 4 different Hourglass Ambient Strobe Powders. I chose Iridescent since it has a touch of pink that the others I’ve been using lack. Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light is described as an illuminating pink powder imparting a soft highlight. I have very fair cool toned skin and I thought this would add enough brightness without being overwhelming. And I was right. This is subtle yet lights up my face. The powder is angel soft to the touch yet doesn’t ever look powdery on me.

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone ($38) is the golden highlighter that I have. I bought a set that contained a travel size of Moonstone and it was one of the best buys I made. Moonstone, one of 7 shades, is a pale gold. It is slightly sparkly so it’s not a daytime look for me. I prefer to apply this with my fingers instead of a brush. It has an almost creamy finish to it so my fingers pick up this very soft powder and I find that my face is more luminous when used this way. The formula is enriched with ultrafine luminescent pearls. If I had to pick one brand for highlighting and illuminating it would be Becca. They really do stand out in this field.

Becca, Hourglass, Tom Ford swatches

Becca, Hourglass, Tom Ford swatches

As someone who favors cream products I couldn’t leave out IT COSMETICS ($24). They’ve created two Hello Lights! Anti-Aging Illuminizers – Powder and  Creme. I love them both but IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer is my favorite.

IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer

IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer

Besides having wonderful anti-aging and hydrating ingredients (infused with peptides, hyaluronic acid, hydrolyzed collagen, silk and vitamins A, C, & E), it gives such a subtle and luminous glow. It’s perfect for spot highlighting like at the top of your cheekbones, above your eyebrows, and the cupid’s bow of your mouth. It’s a lit from within look and one I use often.

There are dozens more highlighters and illuminators that I enjoy using. Adding a bit of a liquid highlighter into foundation gives a beautiful dewy look, using an illuminating primer like COVER FX does all the work for you. Just don’t go without at least one of these wonderful products in your makeup collection.

Do you have a favorite in this category? Dare I ask what it is?  — Marcia


Holiday Gift Guide for Beauty Bombshells

If you have a beauty bombshell to buy for this holiday season, I have ten products that will make you her most favorite person ever. I’ve got five picks for cosmetics and five picks for body products, with something for every budget, whether you want to splurge or save. (Items under $50 are marked SAVE, and those over $50 are marked SPLURGE.) (Some items PR samples; affiliate links)

Paula's Choice

Paula’s Choice

1.  Start with the eyes and go for the Paula’s Choice Nude Matte Eyeshadow Palette (SAVE!  $40). This eyeshadow palette is a perfect choice for EVERYONE.  All the shades are matte and they range from light ivory to deep black, each shade a staple that should be in every makeup stash. This palette takes eyes from morning coffee to evening nightcap. Paula’s Choice teamed with Youtube star Wayne Goss to create this slim, chic palette of truly outstanding eyeshadows – I love this palette so much I’m on my second one, and I’ve purchased several to give as gifts.

GRANDElashes

2.  Give the gift of gorgeous lashes with a GrandeLASH Enhancer System that also comes with a free mirror (SPLURGE! $130)  ure, you could go with just a mascara to help that beauty bombshell create long lashes, but why not go even bigger with this trio from GrandeLASH? This set has a 3 month supply of  GrandeLASH-MD to encourage luscious lashes; GrandeLINER to enhance lashes plus give definition; and GrandeMASCARA for major volume and length. Plus, a beautiful GrandeBLING Mirror will help her admire those gorgeous lashes. Even better, right now you can get 20% OFF Any Holiday Gift Set with the Promo Code HOLIDAY20, which is good until 12/31/15.

Josie Maran Enlightenment Illuminizer

Josie Maran Enlightenment Illuminizer

3.  A great stocking stuffer for that ‘holiday glow’ is the Josie Maran Argan Enlightenment Illuminizer (SAVE! $26)  This is a gorgeous luminizer that gives skin a great halo of radiance. It is terrific on its own, and it turns any moisturizer or foundation into an instant illuminizer. The Champagne shade works with all skin colors, giving a healthy glow that any cosmetics aficionado will love. The Argan Oil is a terrific hydration boost for skin, too.

Cover FX

4. The budget-conscious beauty bombshell will really appreciate the Cover-FX Custom Cover Drops (SAVE!  $44), a bottle of concentrated pigment that turns any moisturizer, serum, or primer into a foundation. She can also add a few drops to turn any tinted moisturizer or sheer coverage foundation into full coverage.
 Kismet Liquid Lipsticks
 5.  Put luscious lips under the tree with Kismet Cosmetics The Succulent Collection:  6 Liquid Lipsticks (SPLURGE!  $120). These highly pigmented, creamy, long-lasting lippies are a lip junkies dream. The Succulent Collection has every color needed from neutral nude to burgundy red. They are highly pigmented, creamy, and long-lasting.
Tatcha Pure One Step Camelia Cleansing Oil

Tatcha Pure One Step Camelia Cleansing Oil

6.  She will love the gift of Tatcha Pure One Step Camelia Cleansing Oil (SAVE!  $48) first because of the exquisite packaging.  Then she will really love it because it’s the best – and easiest to use – cleansing oil out there. Just massage this oil into dry skin, then add a tiny bit of warm water for some lather. It rinses off cleanly and leaves absolutely no trace of makeup behind, yet skin is soft and moist. It’s like a Christmas miracle. Right now, Tatcha has a very cool offer for a free cosmetics pouch when you purchase 3 travel size items. Make the Pure One Step Camelia Cleansing Oil one of the three items (my other recs – Classic Rice Enzyme Powder and Soothing Triple Recovery Cream) and you’ll have a gorgeous travel set for that beauty bombshell.

Karin Herzog 7 Creams of the Week Set

7.  Give her the gift of seven days of skin care treatments with this truly impressive skin care collection from Karin Herzog, The 7 Creams of the Week (SPLURGE! $100). Any true bombshell beauty will swoon over this luxurious six-week system that has a different facial cream for each day of the week — kind of like a skin care version of the ‘day of the week’ underwear!

Repechage Vita Cura Triple Action Foaming Seaweed Bath

Repechage Vita Cura Triple Action Foaming Seaweed Bath

8. True luxury is found with the Repechage Vita Cura Triple Action Foaming Seaweed Bath (SPLURGE! $50). It’s already gift wrapped and holiday ready. Fifty dollars sounds like a lot for a bath oil, but this is a HUGE bottle and ingredients include seaweed harvested from the fresh seawaters off the Brittany Coast of France. The wonderfully clean scented bath oil has 12 vitamins, 18 amino acids and 42 trace elements and minerals for silky smooth skin.

Farmaesthetics Cinnamon Girl

Farmaesthetics Cinnamon Girl

Farmaesthetics Cinnamon Girl

Farmaesthetics Cinnamon Girl

9.  She will love getting a body beautiful with the Farmaesthetics Cinnamon Girl Set (SAVE! $39 ). Inside the pretty gift box are five fabulous body exfoliators:  Handmade Rainwater, Rose & Cinnamon Soap,  organic rose petals that you can  brew into a bath time tea with the included cinnamon stickSweet Soy, Geranium & Rose Bath & Beauty Oil that mixes with the Cinnamon Rose Body Scrub to make an exfoliating paste that removes dead skin and hydrates wonderfully. This is a truly impressive gift that she is going to LOVE.

Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter

Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter

10.  A terrific treat for hydrated, sweet-smelling skin is Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter (SAVE! $35). Body butters can be heavy and sticky, but this beautifully whipped concoction is creamy and light. The beauty bombshell will be thrilled with the 100% Pure Argan Oil inside, and your gift will be unique thanks to the unusual scent combinations. I absolutely love Honeysuckle Vanilla, but you can also choose from Vanilla Apricot, Sweet Citrus, Lavender, Red Rooibos, Cucumber Aloe, Jasmine, Ginger, Tropical Orchid, and Apple Crisp.  – Lisa

*PC and Cover FX purchase by me, others PR samples.

Lust and glitter with Sleek MakeUP palettes

Sleek MakeUPIf you haven’t tried the fabulously affordable UK line Sleek MakeUP yet, this is a great time to do so! They are having a sale on a pretty cool collection called the 24K GOLD GIFT SET (LIMITED EDITION). It normally sells for $41.49 and right now it’s on sale for $30.00.  The collection includes:

  • i-Lust Eyeshadow Palette in The Gold Standard
  • Glitter Me Lip Gloss in Private Jet
  • Midas Touch Highlighting Palette
  • Makeup Bag

Sleek MakeUP recently sent us some products to test and while I haven’t tried everything in the 24K Gold Gift Set I have tried most of it.

THE GOLD STANDARD I-LUST EYESHADOW PALETTE (LIMITED EDITION) sells for $11.49 and includes four shimmer powder eyeshadows and two cream eyeshadows in golden shades. The six shades are housed in a chic palette with a mirror and a dual ended brush, with one side a standard eyshadow brush and other side is a sponge tip. The palette is sturdy and actually closes so well it’s tough to open, especially if you have long nails. The brush is just so-so…you will want to use your own brushes.

Sleek The Gold Standard I-Lust Eyeshadow Palette

Sleek The Gold Standard I-Lust Eyeshadow Palette Laurent and Coco

Laurent is a shimmery plummy brown that is INCREDIBLY pigmented.  I put this on and was like WHOA!  Use a little and build your way up. Coco is a coppery gold with shimmer that is very pretty as a lid shade.

Sleek The Gold Standard I-Lust Eyeshadow Palette

Sleek The Gold Standard I-Lust Eyeshadow Palette Margiela and Vera

Margiela is one of the two cream eyeshadows, a taupe with golden shimmer.  I don’t do well with cream eyeshadow since I have oily lids, but this one has good pigmentation and wears better than most cream eyeshadows do for me. Vera is a light shimmery gold that is a few shades lighter than Coco with more of a yellow tone.

Sleek The Gold Standard I-Lust Eyeshadow Palette

Sleek The Gold Standard I-Lust Eyeshadow Palette in Vivienne and Louis

I’m sorry, somehow I swatched these two in opposite order – in the palette it goes Louis then Vivienne, but in my swatch picture Vivienne is on the left and Louis is on the right. Vivienne is a pretty shimmery champagne that is great as a wash, or for the lid or brow. Louis is the second cream eyeshadow, and it looks like a shimmery gold in the pan but goes on rather sheer with sparkles. I am not a fan of this one. There is no real color and the sparkles tend to migrate.

Five out of the six eyeshadows are winners for me, so I do recommend this palette, especially for the price. Most of the shades are highly pigmented and I love the color combination.

Sleek Solstice Highlighting Palette

Sleek Solstice Highlighting Palette

The 24K Gold Gift Set features the Midas Highlighting Palette, which I haven’t tried. However, I have tested the SOLSTICE HIGHLIGHTING PALETTE ($14.99) which is similar, just different shades. This highlighting palette features two baked powders, one cream highlighter, and one shimmer powder. The finishes are all metallic and meant to give skin a sheen.

Sleek Solstice Highlighting Palette

Sleek Solstice Highlighting Palette Ecliptic, Subsolar, Hemisphere, Equinox

I feel like the Solstice Highlighting Palette is a bit ‘young’ for me. At my age, too much sheen or shimmer isn’t flattering. That said, those of you in your 20’s and 30’s will enjoy this palette. The powders are all highly pigmented and are in flattering shades. They can all be used as highlighters as well as eyeshadows, not to mention for some shimmer on arms and décolletage. I really like the one cream highlighter, Subsolar. It sheers out beautifully and is a great highlighter, especially high on the cheekbone.

Sleek Glitter Me Gloss in Uptown Girl

Sleek Glitter Me Gloss in Uptown Girl

Sleek Glitter Me Gloss in Uptown Girl

Sleek Glitter Me Gloss in Uptown Girl

The 24K Gold Gift Set includes a Glitter Me Lip Gloss ($7.49) in Private Jet – I haven’t tried that shade, but I have tried the GLITTER ME LIP GLOSS IN UPTOWN GIRL (LIMITED EDITION).

 This is a sheer lip gloss with a raspberry tint and lots of shimmer. I like it – the shimmer isn’t grainy and the gloss has a nice slip. I tend to wear this over lipstick since it doesn’t provide much color on its own, but it definitely makes a party out of a subdued or matte lipstick.

I think the quality of Sleek MakeUP is terrific for the price point. Check it out and take a look at the 24K Gold Gift Set while it’s still available.  – Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration

Sleek 24K Gold Gift Set

Sleek 24K Gold Gift Set

Instant cheekbones with Youngblood Contour Palette

Youngblood Contour Palette

Youngblood Contour Palette

I am not really a huge fan of the Kardasian’s but one thing that I always admire about those ladies is their ability to contour.  Contour can give you instant cheekbones, a slimmer nose, a thinner face…it can completely transform your look.

A really terrific contour palette with options for all skin shades is the Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics Contour Palette ($47).

Youngblood Contour Palette

Youngblood Contour Palette

pr sample

This sturdy palette has 3 powder highlighter shades and 3 powder contour shades. The shades go from lightest to darkest, so this palette is extremely versatile.  All the shades are matte, making it different from the usual contour collection.

Highlighters typically have shimmer to bounce light off skin, increasing the effect. The problem with shimmer is that it doesn’t look natural. These shades are all matte so the contour/highlighting effect is definitely natural. The powders are also on the creamy side, not super dry, so they really meld into the skin.

Youngblood Contour Palette swatched

Youngblood Contour Palette swatched

My skin is a little lighter than medium and I find I can use all the shades in this palette. Youngblood also includes a very helpful booklet with illustrations for contouring and highlighting. My favorite trick is to use the lightest shade right down the center of my nose, then use the darkest shade on sides. This makes my nose look straight and far more narrow.

As far as application, I use whatever works – a brush, a sponge, my fingers. Get a Youngblood Contour Palette for yourself and have fun playing – you will be amazed at how much you can truly transform your look!  – Lisa

*received for editorial consideration

Think Pink with Sleek Barekissed Illuminator

Think pink

Think pink

As a pink lover I adore finding new pink items to share for my “Think Pink” posts. Sleek MakeUP added to my pink collection with their Barekissed Illuminator in Casablanca. As you know everything lately has taken a turn to illumination and highlighting so the timing of this beauty is perfect.

Sleek Barekissed Illuminator

Sleek Barekissed Illuminator

Barekissed Illuminators ($13.49) come in a glass pump that is enough to last me for ages (30 mL, 1.014 fl oz.) and are available in 4 shades. With Casablanca it’s like they came into my house to check out my favorite colors since this radiant pink is perfect. Other shades are Cuba which appears to be the peach version of mine, Monaco a luminous cream, and Pompeii a bronze.

Sleek Casablanca

Sleek Casablanca

Sleek Cuba

Sleek Cuba

Sleek Monaco

Sleek Monaco

Sleek Pompeii

Sleek Pompeii

The Barekissed Illuminators are meant to enhance your complexion. They contain light reflecting pigments that give a lustrous shine without a drop of glitter or shimmer. I’ve used it in four ways so far.

1. Directly on my cheeks as a blush under my blush. I’ll dab this on with my fingers where I want my blush to be. Then once it’s dried down I’ll put a powder or cream blush over it. I love it this way when I’m thinking pink since it makes any blush last and last.

Sleek Barekissed Illuminator in Casablanca

Sleek Barekissed Illuminator in Casablanca

2. I’ll mix some in with my foundation for an all over brightening. This works especially well for me with some of my warmer shades. I don’t notice the pink but I do notice how much more alive my skin looks.

Sleek Barekissed Illuminator in Casablanca

Sleek Barekissed Illuminator in Casablanca

3.  Put this wherever you’d apply a highlighter to brighten your skin. It’s great on top of my cheekbones, a little down the bridge of my nose, and just above my eyebrows. I always make sure to blend well so it’s not obvious, just a hint of color for that great luminosity.

4.  After applying an eyeshadow primer, I’ll dab a drop of Sleek Barekissed Illuminator in Casablanca on top. I usually keep it on my browbone where it adds a whisper of pink in a secret way. No one would guess that’s what makes my eyes glisten just a bit.

Sleek Barekissed Illuminator in Casablanca

Sleek Barekissed Illuminator in Casablanca

These Illuminators are a great alternative to powder highlighters because they give you the same effect without any powder or powdery residue. As I mentioned they aren’t glittery or shimmery so even those of us with large pores can use these with ease. It’s not portable like a powder highlighter would be but I’m okay with that because I rarely touch up anything other than my lips when I’m out.

Now that Sleek sells to us in the U.S. there’s just so much to love. Shipping is also free with a $35 order and it’s so easy to find $35 worth of amazing products to buy from them. You also get a 10% off code when you sign up for their emails making it that much more affordable.

Sleek MakeUP is making some of my dreams come true with their fabulous and affordable products. What shade would you choose for your Barekissed Illuminator? — Marcia

 

 

 *sent for consideration

Ingredients: Aqua, Dimethicone, Isododecane, Glycerin, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Dimethicone / Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer / Cyclopentasiloxan, PVP, Phenoxyethanol / Ethylhexylglycerin, Tocopheryl Acetate, Panthenol, Disodium EDTA, Parfum, Tin Oxide MAY CONTAIN +/-; CI 77019 ( Mica ) / CI 77891 ( Titanium Dioxide ), CI 77492 ( Iron Oxide Yellow ), CI 75470 ( Carmine ), CI 77891 ( Titanium Dioxide ), CI 77491 ( Iron Oxide Red ), CI 77499 ( Iron Oxide Black ).