Makeup splurges for better or worse

What constitutes a makeup splurge? Is it money? Is it the lack of resistance? Is it weakness? I say it all depends on the situation. A splurge can be something that’s $5 or something that’s $100. It’s all what you believe you want rather than just need. Today I’m featuring 7 products that I feel I splurged on. Some are worth every cent, some are regrets. Please check out my choices to see if you agree.  —  Marcia

NATASHA DENONA EYESHADOW PALETTE 10 ($95)

Natasha Denona Eyeshadow Palette 10

This is my most expensive splurge and one I’m on the fence about. $95 is a lot to spend on a palette but it does have 10 gorgeous shades that are outside of my comfort zone to some degree. The shades are #56p Pearl (champagne toned shimmer), #06p Anthrazit (charcoal black with a subtle silver shimmer), #47p Dark Sepia (dark chocolate brown with a slight gold shimmer), #02m Blue Space (rich royal blue with a shimmer finish), #27m Slate (vivid purple shimmer), #19m Deep Teal (intense teal shimmer), #25m Aura (cream white with a gold iridescent finish), #13m Raw Gold (deep gold with a bronze undertone), #87m Light Coral (peach shadow with a subtle gold shimmer), #07m Graphite (dark grey with silver shimmer).

Natasha Denona Eyeshadow Palette 10

As you can see these are all shimmer shades but the extent of the shimmer is unique to each shade. It’s really not the most practical palette because of all the shimmer. The problem for me isn’t the cost though but the quality of the shades isn’t uniform. Some apply easily while others want to fight with me.

WAS THIS A GOOD SPLURGE?  Depends, it got me over my Natasha Denona craving and I didn’t buy the more expensive palettes. I like this but I can’t say I love it. (Swatches from Sephora, mine don’t look like this though)

PRETTY VULGAR NIGHTINGALE EYESHADOW PALETTE ($35)

After falling in love with Pretty Vulgar Early Bird Eyeshadow palette I was anxious for more. But I’m a pretty staid individual colorwise so I went with the tried and true. Considering I have 357962 nude and brown palettes did I need this? That’s why it’s a splurge, I don’t need it.

Pretty Vulgar Nightingale Eyeshadow Palette

WAS THIS A GOOD SPLURGE? I’m the wishy washy queen right now because I haven’t decided. I’ve had it for a few weeks and haven’t touched it. Some of the Early Bird shadows are disappointing and I’m worried that I’ll find that here too. What to do?

Pretty Vulgar Nightingale Eyeshadow Palette

DIOR METALIZER – METAL CREME SHADOW ($25)

Once I saw the Dior Metalizers reviewed I couldn’t stop thinking about them. Metallics are hot for fall and I’ve always loved metallics in accessories and cosmetics. I chose Bronze Tension – mistake! It’s too dark and doesn’t blend well on me.

Dior Metalizer Cream Shadow in Bronze Tension

I want to like this so badly that I can taste it. I love to start with a cream shadow and use it as a base or to highlight powders. But I picked the wrong shade. I don’t see any metallic on my eyes with this very dark shade. (inject crying emoji here)

Dior Metalizer Cream Shadow in Bronze Tension

WAS THIS A GOOD SPLURGE? Obviously not which saddens me.

STILA HUGE EXTREME LASH MASCARA ($23)

There’s a story behind buying this mascara. I received a sample size in one of my subscriptions and put it aside for a while. When cleaning to move I find it and tried it. I totally fell in love with it. Wearing Stila Huge was like being granted false eyelashes. You know I couldn’t wait to buy this in spite of having umpteen unopened mascaras.

Stila Huge Extreme Mascara

Stila Huge Extreme Mascara

Well … the tube I bought is a dud. Some days my lashes look totally amazing, other days they are a mushy mess. I’ve determined that the problem is that the opening for the wand is too large which makes too much mascara coming out. There’s none of that satisfying sound you hear when opening a tube. Even cleaning it off doesn’t guarantee that I’ll love my lashes that day.

WAS THIS A GOOD SPLURGE? With mascara you just never know what you’re going to get. One tube can make angels sing, the next tube can make them cry. This makes my lashes cry 50% of the time.

ARTIS PALM BRUSH ($65)

The Artis Palm Brush is absolutely incredible. My words can not describe how much I love this brush and the Artis Oval 10 brush. Yes expensive, yes worth every cent to me. Here’s a description that explains the Palm Brush: “A brush with a generously sized, rounded oval of fibers to provide coverage to a larger areas of the face and body. It features more than 250,000 fibers. Artis brushes are made exclusively with CosmeFibre, a revolutionary engineered fiber made for applying cosmetic and makeup products.”

Artis Palm Brush

I use this and the Oval 10 for liquid foundation since I can’t believe the softness of the brushes and the airbrushed application.

WAS THIS A GOOD SPLURGE? Without a doubt. Even though I have the Oval 10 which is the same except that the Palm brush doesn’t have a handle, I wanted this and caved. Happy happy.

TARTE SHAPE TAPE aka DOUBLE DUTY BEAUTY SHAPE TAPE CONTOUR CONCEALER ($25)

So I found myself in Ulta without a plan to buy anything and I came across the infamous Tarte Shape Tape. When Shape Tape first came out you couldn’t find it anywhere not even Tarte’s website. That made the hunt more real. The last thing I needed was another concealer.

Tarte Shape Tape Concealer in Fair Beige

This very fat tube and very fat wand are quite interesting. I’ve always liked the concealers that Tarte makes and this one intrigued me. There are 14 shades to choose from and several that are light enough for me. After much deliberation I chose Fair Beige which I now see is for fair skin with pink undertones. The color choice was right.

Tarte Shape Tape Concealer in Fair Beige

Ulta explains how to use this as a contour and as a concealer. I mainly use it under my eyes. I rarely start a day with concealer but I do add it if I’m going somewhere later in the day or evening. “Powered by Amazonian clay and conditioning mango seed and shea butters, the nutrient-rich concealer helps promote skin elasticity and illumination with each crease-free application.”

WAS THIS A GOOD SPLURGE? At first I didn’t think so but it’s really grown on me. I have a ton of concealers and wondered why I bought another, but I’m glad I did. It doesn’t crease under my eyes and does a good job of covering everything up.

KJAER WEIS CREAM BLUSH – BLOSSOMING ($56)

Now this was a true splurge. I actually had no intention of buying this and then suddenly it was in my cart and on my CC. Hmm. I did no research into this other than knowing that Kjaer Weis was a luxury brand and that the reviews were amazing. But it’s a cream blush and I’m a nut for cream blush.

Kjaer Weis Cream Blush

The first thing to know is that this is the heaviest cosmetic I own. It could be used as a weapon. The metal compact is beautiful on my vanity and slides open to display the creamiest of all cream blushes.

Kjaer Weis Cream Blush in Blossoming

Blossoming is a beautiful light peachy pink shade that is subtle yet shows up perfectly on my fair skin. I’m totally in love with this color.

Kjaer Weis Cream Blush in Blossoming

Kjaer Weiss blush is – Certified organic – Formulated with Rose Rubiginosa Seed Oil to fight signs of aging – Free from gluten, petroleum, parabens, artificial coloring and fragrance. This comes in 5 shades that all look totally amazing to me. Lovely is on my list for the next time I “need” to splurge.

Kjaer Weis Cream Blush in Blossoming

This isn’t a cream to powder but it’s not sticky. I apply a light amount of setting powder to my cheeks first and then use my finger to blend the cream on. It melts onto my finger and applies like buttah! It’s infused with Castor Seed and Jojoba Oils to help strengthen and nourish the skin and has a Beeswax base that’s well-suited to all complexions.

WAS THIS A GOOD SPLURGE? Yes yes and yes again. I love it and when I can afford it I’ll purchase another.

Makeup Splurges

Affiliate disclosure

What’s the verdict on my makeup splurges? Would you buy any of these yourself? Do you have any of these? I’d love for you to share.  —  Marcia

Don’t forget to see what my friends have splurged on.


I got lucky with the Beautylish Lucky Bag 2017

Beautylish Lucky Bag 2017

Beautylish Lucky Bag 2017

Once a year the webstore Beautylish has a secret sale for Lucky Bags. This is my third year buying this and it keeps getting better. The Lucky Bag is different for everyone lucky enough to be able to buy one. The typical bag is $75 and the only clue you get when buying is that the items are brands that Beautylish sells. Considering the quality that they cover, you can’t go wrong! This year they offered a $150 bag with the same amount of items but ones with a higher value. That went in a flash. I was on an early access list, went to buy the second I saw the bags were available but no luck with that. I’m not the least big unhappy though as you’ll see from my amazing bag.beautylish lucky bag 2017 tag

6 items, 6 top notch brands! $75 plus shipping = $198 in products that I’m so excited about.

my Beautylish Lucky Bag 2017

my Beautylish Lucky Bag 2017

BIODERMA MICELLAR WATER: ($6.90) I believe that everyone received the small size of Bioderma Micellar. Happily for me the one I received is Sensiblo H20 which is the one I use all the time. It never hurts to have a spare of this. 5 stars!!

Bioderma Micellar Water Sensiblo H20

Bioderma Micellar Water Sensiblo H20

JOEUR LONG WEAR LIP CREME in DULCE DE LECHE ($18): There are 26 shades of this liquid lipstick available at Beautylish so I consider myself extra lucky that I received a shade that I love. I’m always receiving dark lipsticks yet I really only wear MLBB or light shades. This matte pink (which I consider warm but they say is cool) is a perfect shade for me. It also gives me the chance to try this at last to see what I think.

Joeur Long Wear Liquid Lipstick - Dulce de Leche

Joeur Long Wear Liquid Lipstick – Dulce de Leche

I have always admired the Joeur matte lipsticks on others but never was sure if I should buy one. This has a caramel fragrance that lasts for a short while and doesn’t annoy me. My lips have to be well exfoliated to wear this but that’s not a problem. 4 stars! (fragrance removed one)beautylish lucky bag 2017 joeur lip collage

ORIBE DRY TEXTURING SPRAY ($22) – Believe it or not I’ve never used a product like this. I occasionally will use a dry shampoo and always like having one in the house. Ditto with a hair spray. But it’s rare that they get used. I saw this and thought of Lisa since she’d love this (“Bigger, better, full-on glamorous hair. This invisible dry hair spray builds in incredible volume and sexy texture. Patented polymers absorb oil at the roots, leaving you with just-styled hair for days (and nights).”). I’ll try it but I bet I end up giving it to my blog partner. 3 stars from me and surely 5 stars from Lisa.

Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray

Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray

SMITH & CULT NAILED LACQUER in LOVERS CREEP ($18): I can’t tell you how much I’ve wanted a Smith & Cult polish. I just never remembered to buy plus I couldn’t decide what color. Lovers Creep is a beautiful opaque bordeaux shade. I have a lot of polish to test but I just can’t wait to have the time to wear this.  Smith & Cult is “8-Free, Long Wear, High Shine & Smooth Coverage.” Definitely 5 stars.

Smith & Cult Nailed Lacquer in Lovers Creep

Smith & Cult Nailed Lacquer in Lovers Creep

Smith & Cult Nailed Lacquer in Lovers Creep

Smith & Cult Nailed Lacquer in Lovers Creep

NATASHA DENOUNA EYESHADOW PALETTE 5, PALETTE 13: ($48)  Well my heart skipped a beat when I saw the Natasha Denouna box. While palette 13 wouldn’t be one I’d pick to buy, it gives me the chance to try out her eyeshadows to see if I like them as much as her blush. Happily this doesn’t have the fragrance that the blush has. What it has is a duochrome green, a shimmery copper, and 3 matte shades that apply like butter.

Natasha Denoune palette 13

Natasha Denouna palette 13

Natasha Denoune palette 13

Natasha Denouna palette 13

I’m anxious to play around more with these shades. Flamingo is a great base shade with its touch of warm pink that doesn’t make me look like a flamingo. Sand Storm is very warm so I don’t think that it will get much use. Arizona is an easy to wear brown that can be built up. The prettiest shades are Pinja which looks green but reminds me of MAC Club with its green brown tone but with more oomph and Umber is an amazing golden copper. It’s a metallic shadow without visible shimmer. 4 Stars –  NO 5 stars, after all it is Natasha Denouna.

Natasha Denoune palette 13

Natasha Denouna palette 13

WAYNE GOSS OO BRUSH ($85): This originally was a limited edition brush but now it’s a permanent brush in the Wayne Goss Beautylish collection. It’s so magnificent that I don’t want to use it and get it dirty. How many times do I have the opportunity to have an $85 brush? Totally soft and luxurious. I’m overjoyed to have another Wayne Goss brush. I need to gather all the ones I have to review them for you.

Designed for a quick application with the softest finish. The large size is ideal for applying mineral or powder foundations—or any powder, bronzer, or blush—across the face. The tapered point lets you go into the eye area and do detailed highlighting work.The bristles measure 50mm in length, with a width of 20mm at it’s widest point. Hair Type: Goat. 100% cruelty free

Wayne Goss OO brush

Wayne Goss OO brush

Wayne Goss OO brush

Wayne Goss OO brush

I’m thrilled with my Lucky Bag and absolutely will be purchasing the 2018 bag. It’s been one of my favorite buys in a long time (and I’ve bought a lot). Have I tempted you? Would you spend $75 on a surprise bag?  —  Marcia

Natasha Denona Blush Duo in Light Antique Rose

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose

Do you ever have moments that you MUST buy something? You might have been thinking of it for a while or it might be an impulse buy, but you absolutely need it in your life. That’s my story with Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose. I knew nothing about it other than that it was a brand I’d been lusting after. I had 2 small items in my cart at Beautylish and went rummaging around on the site. And there it was! Natasha Denona, the Israeli makeup artist that was making a name for herself in the US. I quickly added this blush to my cart, totally ignoring the fact that I’d sworn up and down that I wouldn’t buy any more blushes. I didn’t give myself time to second guess myself.

Natasha Denona Blush Duo

Natasha Denona Blush Duo

There are 19 Blush Duos from Natasha Denona ($38) and I was looking for soft shades when I chose #2 Light Antique Rose. It contains 2 shades: 18 Renee’s Pastel Pink and 12 Light Antique Rose. As a pink lover I chose this for the Pastel Pink.

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose

What’s interesting about the blush duos is the way they are put arranged. They purposely have a dominant color on the right side and a more subtle color on the left for blending and softening edges. For me this is like getting 3 blushes for the price of the duo since I can use them separately or together.

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose

Upon swatching the blushes with my finger (and no primer) I was worried at first since the matte pink showed up so powdery and I was concerned that it would be like that on my cheeks. That was quickly put to rest once applied. The blush is soft and silky looking on my cheeks. The pigmentation is pretty amazing so a light hand is needed. I always have a velour puff at the ready with a blush this pigmented.

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose

The side with Light Antique Rose looked neither light nor rose on my fingers. It has a slight shimmer to it but it doesn’t look out of place in the daytime. As you can see in my finger swatches it’s much smoother. It applies beautifully but again, very pigmented.

Natasha Denona 02 blush duo from beautylish.com

Natasha Denona 02 blush duo from beautylish.com

Swirled together with a blush brush is my favorite result with this duo. I love the soft sheen and the color it produces on my face. It’s appropriate with all the neutrals I wear on my eyes.

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose swirled together

Natasha Denona Blush Duo 2 in Light Antique Rose swirled together

There are two downsides to these duos but they aren’t enough to change my opinion of these beauties. They have a fragrance which surprised me. When I first opened the compact I was dismayed and told my email buddy that I didn’t know if this would work for me. The fragrance isn’t objectionable but it is noticeable for at least a half hour after applied. It’s a floral, maybe a rose fragrance, but it’s not strong. The other downside is that I was surprised how similar the duos are. The cool toned ones all seem to have Pastel Pink on the left while the warm and neutral ones all have a matte shade called 02 Toutou. That would affect my purchasing another cool shade though I do love #19 Strawberry Cheeks and #8 Peach in case I get the urge again.

But the pros outweigh the cons for me. These are full size blushes that my brushes fit into easily. The compact is beautiful and sturdy and would travel well. The mirror is the full size of the 3 1/2″ X 2 1/2″ palette. Most important though is how much I love the way it looks once applied and blended. That’s what counts.

Natasha Denona Blush Duo

Natasha Denona Blush Duo

Have you indulged in Natasha Denona yet? — Marcia

*affiliate link used