Friday, June 29, 2018

How to Cover Under Eye Circles

Dark under eye circles are absolutely the worst. Some of us experience darkness on it's own, while others have raised or puffy under eye bags. I am going to give you some of the different things you can do to reduce circles and bags, as well as some killer makeup to help you cover up both.



1 - Drink More Water

I know it sounds trivial, I know it's irritating, but not drinking water causes your skin to look dull and can create sallowness.  Drinking water and eating healthy will help your body in all kinds of ways both inward and outward. You can read more about that here.

2- The Spoon Trick

This is really more about the puffy bags than just darkness. Under eye bags (or puffiness) happens as we age. It is usually cause by weakening muscles and aft around the eyes, which deteriorate and collect in the skin underneath it. Some of us may also see some puffiness around our eyes after a good cry or during allergy season due to rubbing and inflammation. This trick works for both.

Put two spoons in the freezer for 20 minutes, then place each one under your eyes (so the convex part that rounds outward is pressed against your skin) for 5 minutes. gently press and rock the spoon back and forth just a touch. This helps to freeze the fatty tissue and break it up. Follow this with a little under eye serum or moisturizer.

3- Use a good Under Eye Serum

There are some serums that help to immediately diminish or  get rid of under eye circles temporarily. These are great for last minute touch ups and after-cry sessions. My absolute favorite for this is the Benefit Puff Off (which has a cool metal applicator tip... does that sound familiar 😉)

But for aging women who are seeing those truly puffy under eye bags that aren't from inflammation, you need a powerful and hard working under eye serum. My favorite under eye serums that really work at the Michael Todd Beauty KNU Serum Eye Treatment and the Exuviance Age Reverse Eye Contour.

4- Take off your makeup at night

If your under the age of 30 and you get consistent under eye circles, a common culprit is not completely removing your eye makeup. Crazy right? But it's true. Make sure you are completely removing your eye makeup each night. My favorite eye makeup removers include the Mary Kay Oil Free Eye Makeup Remover and the Benefit They're Real Makeup Remover. Follow this with a makeup removing microfiber towel. I like these ones by Fresh Face from Walmart.



5- Cover it up!

If none of that is working you likely need to consult your doctor or dermatologist. But whether it's a health issue, or you are simply working towards reducing them, you want to look good now right? So start by using the right concealer for your under eyes. It's really up to personal preference but I like the It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye. It is a little bit of a thicker formula that has a ton of coverage. My next favorite is the It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Concealing Pot. It has build able coverage and is very lightweight and hydrating. Pat whichever under eye concealer you choose under your eyes and then BAKE.  If you do not know what baking is or how to do it click here. Baking is a really powerful way of setting your under eye makeup to ensure brightness and keep everything in place. It also fills in fine lines and wrinkles and will help to smooth out bags and brighten darkness. Plus these concealers can be used all over the face, not just under the eyes.



Hopefully these tips and tricks were helpful to you!


Wednesday, June 27, 2018

REVIEW: Redken Pillow Proof Blowdry Primer Spray

Packaging - 4 (very good)
Scent - 3 (average)
Feeling in the Hair - 5 (excellent)
Longevity - 5 (excellent)
Priming Power - 5 (excellent)
Overall:


This product, just like any other primer, makes the products you put on top of it last longer. I had never seen a primer for your hair before when this fist came out, and I love this product! It smells weird to me personally, but a lot of my clients love it. I would describe the smell as something in-between roses and honey. Because it's a thin formula and in a spray bottle once you buy it you don't have to buy more for a long time! It also feels really lightweight on the hair, I honestly can't even tell when it is in. But the most important thing is that it works! My product lasts longer and works better when I use this first. I also have to use less product when I use the primer first, and my hair dries faster too!To use just spray it on damp or dry hair before using other product. BONUS! It is also a heat protectant. It isn't powerful enough to protect from the heat of a flat or curling iron, but it is just right for a blow dryer!

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

REVIEW: Hey Honey Take It Off Mask EDIT

Packaging - 4 (very good)
Longevity - 5 (excellent)
Scent - 3 (average)
Ease of Removal - 3 (average)
Result - 5 (excellent)
Overall:



I love facial masks! I do at least one every single week on myself. After I am done I want my skin to feel smooth and soft and rejuvenated. This mask left my skin glowing! It's a sticky consistency when your put it on but a little goes a really long way (which as we know I love!) but it is clear which is a touch annoying when you take it off. I left it on for 30 minutes and then peeled it off. Taking it off took a little time and was easily the most frustrating part of this process. I definitely think that you need to have some sort of exfoliation or cleansing facial brush to really remove this product (Mary Kay Skinvigorate, Clarisonic, Olay ProX Brush, ect). Other than that the smell is kind of weird, a little citrus-esque, but faint enough that I didn't mind it.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

REVIEW: Karity Brow Goals

Packaging - 5 (excellent)
Longevity - 5 (excellent)
Ease of Use - 5 (excellent)
Wear - 5 (excellent)
Overall:



This is my die hard new favorite brow product. I'm hooked you guys. Let me dive right into why. The packaging is sturdy, luxurious, and functional. I hate when caps are really loose and bound to just fall apart, but these are not that way. A little goes a super long way. Everything is perfectly pigmented, so it's not heavy on color but it is enough and it's buildable. Once I put it on, it seriously didn't budge all day even through my sweating!

But my favorite thing about this is the ingenuity and versatility. This product has three parts. A twist up crayon or pencil, a powder (on a firm stippling sponge) and a spooli. You usually only see any two of these on a single product. You get all three, in a functional and sleek package with perfect color matching. Who could ask for more? Karity did. They said they wanted this to be affordable, so you get it all for only $12. When affordable products that are multinational and make your life easier come around, you have to hop on the bandwagon.



Use the code FRIEND-C6H9JVH at checkout for $5 off your order of $10 or more!




Monday, June 18, 2018

What False Eyelash Brands Do You Like?

There are a million brands of false eyelashes out there. They have different gimmicks and different price points. I use a lot of different lashes both on myself and my clients. Everyone needs something different, so it doesn't make sense for me to only carry one thing. BUT there are some guidelines I use to pick my lashes to ensure quality. I am going to go through the three things I look for below.


1 - Cruelty and Mink free

A LOT of false lashes are made with mink. I am against mink farming. Minks do not provide a lot of meat for consumption or anything of that sort, and those that farm mink typically do so for the exclusive purpose of selling their pelts. I am not a supporter of that. Some lashes say they are cruelty free and made with mink, but I don't buy it. HOW would they get the mink fur without killing a mink? And those minks come from mink farms. Some justify it saying they use "scraps" and don't purchase their own from farmers, but it is still partaking and I'm not a fan. I'd rather use synthetic hair, but generally my lashes use human hair.

2 - The Band
Lashes all have different bands. The 4 above are the most common. Lash 1 depicts a full black band. Lash 2 shows a Demi-Band. Lash 3 has what I call a Fan Lash Band. While lash 4 has a fine band. To me the finer and less solid and thick the band is the better. The thicker bands are harder to manipulate as well as to blend in with your makeup to make them look natural.

3 - Strands

Are the strands course? Are the thick? Do they look like plastic? Do they feel soft? Do they blend? I like lashes that look real, not fake. Below are two sets of lashes. They both have a stiletto pointed kind of look. Both are dramatic. BUT one has a wispy and natural feel to them, the others are plastic and cheap looking.


Some of my favorite brands of lashes are Ardell and Kara. I am not one for brands like House of Lashes because I simply don't see the necessity to spend $10+ on a single use item. However their lashes are very high quality.


Now don't forget the glue! I have tried SO MANY lash glues and my favorite is the Duo brand. Their packaging touts that they are #1 lash glue brand world wide and I believe it. I'm not sure you can do better honestly. It's gentle, easy to take off, dries quickly, I am not sure what else I could want in a glue. It also dries clear and doesn't get goopy on the lids.



Saturday, June 16, 2018

REVIEW: Sonia Roselli SexAPeel

Packaging - 5 (excellent)
Scent - 4 (very good)
Exfoliation - 5 (excellent)
Gentleness - 5 (excellent)
Overall:


I have been super impressed by this product. Sonia Roselli is a respected makeup artist and so when she started coming out with her own line of products there was a lot of buzz. I have been using this for some time now but for some reason never reviewed it. Let's start with the packaging. It comes in a sleek pearlized bottle that is sturdy, functional and sexy. The simple writing is elegant and high end looking. The nozzle itself has the capacity to be "on" or "off" so that you don't accidentally spray it and it makes it ideal for travel. The scent is almost nonexistent, but what is there is very pleasant. It has a rose-like fragrance, but just a hint.

The formula itself is perfection. This is a chemical exfoliant. Usually we use scrubs that are harsh on our skin and can cause micro-fissures as well as inflammation, which is not ideal before a makeup application. This squirts out as a liquid and using a cotton round your can apply it and work it in in small circular motions to help slough off dead skin. It's gentle and incredibly effective. It works great for dry skin like mine, because it doesn't dry it out further. This is seriously a must have.




Thursday, June 14, 2018

REVIEW:

Packaging - 5 (excellent)
Length - 3 (average)
Flake Free - 0 (awful)
Volume - 3 (average)
Clump - 2 (not good)
Overall:


I wanted so badly to love this mascara. I am a fan of Tarte's other mascara so I hoped to be a fan of this too. The packaging is AMAZING. It's sleek, fun, creative, different, but still high end and luxurious looking. The issues all lie in the formulas.

It adds length but not a noteworthy amount. It adds volume, but once again, not a note worthy amount. It clumps for sure. It's not all the time every lash, but at least s out of 3 times I wear it I have some clumping happening, and it's frustrating. But the worst part? The flaking. It flaked all over my face. I basically wasn't wearing mascara by the end of the day (at least not on my lashes). Primers and sealers helped but didn't solve the issue. I do not recommend this product overall. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

BRAND BREAKDOWN: Karity

The Story:
The founder of Karity is named Isaac Rami. He says that hen his wife sent him to pick up a few things for her at a local beauty counter that he had some serious sticker shock. His sotry goes that he went home and as determined to find out why these products cost so much. He realized that these products cost so much because of the cost of traditional marketing, celebrity endorsements, sales agents, wholesale markups and then retail markups. He decided that he could create a beauty brand that had high quality products and deliver them for a super affordable cost but cutting out the middle man and growing organically. 


The Brand: 
Karity 21 Shadow Palette in Matte

Karity (which is the maiden name of the founder's wife), is rapidly growing, but still new. It has a limited amount of available products, but new ones are in development and quickly being added. The brand is supposed to offer high end and sleek packaging with quality products for a super affordable price. Their products are cruelty free and they currently pledge to donate to help feed an animal for every palette sold. It looks like their promise is to feed one animal for every palette through their local shelters. However the brand intriguingly states that they plan to change their charitable contributions every year to a different focus, so I am interested to see what might come up next.  


The Products:

Karity is a small and fast growing brand. They only have a handful of products so I will go over the few I have personally tried.

The Karity Lip Lock is the businesses major viral item. It boasts to be a comfortable matte liquid lipstick that lasts all day for $6. Seems to goo to be true? I had to try it. In three words? I love it. It lasts all day, its comfortable and it's incredibly pigmented. You can get a more detailed review here


The concealer palette surprised me as soon as I tried it. I picked it up with low hopes because I was paying for shipping to try the Lip Lock, so I might as well try this right? I had been looking for a new concealer palette. This is highly pigmented. It doesn't crease and it has a buildable coverage. You can see my full review by clicking here.  

The Eye Shadows were (I believe) the companies launch product. They have a few palettes (from neutral schemes, some fun mixed palettes and some bolder arrays) as well as eye shadow singles. They also sell refillable "travel chambers" which are basically empty metal palettes. These are pigmented, silky and honestly of the quality that I see from major prestige brands like MAC, Anastasia Beverly Hills and others, but it's $4 per pan as opposed to $12+. I do wish that the shadow palettes had tins that were compatible with magnetic palettes like their singles do, but hopefully that will change in the future. You can see a more detailed review here.

The last thing I have personally tried from Karity is a couple of makeup brushes. I do not have a separate review for these. I bought the Angled Eyeliner Brush (E22) and the Small Contour Brush (F21). They are soft and they are sturdy. I didn't have a lot of loose fibers even after being washed several times. Both have been added to my prokit. I actually like the Angled Eyeliner Brush better than the MAC Synthetic Angled Brow Brush 208, which is a $20 brush while the Karity is a $3 brush. 
My Take:

I am overall stoked for this brand. I truly feel that their products are thus far very high quality and affordable. I am floored by it to be honest. It's not just a one hit wonder item, but a full line. I just put in my second order and I am stoked to try out their new brow products, eye shadow primer, and makeup removal wipes. I think this company is making a splash in the beauty industry and with their low shipping prices, I encourage you try them out too. 



Use the code FRIEND-C6H9JVH at checkout for $5 off your order of $10 or more!


I do not own the rights to any of these images or pictures. all opinions are my own and do not reflect the general public's or everyone's. 









Sunday, June 10, 2018

REVIEW: Redken Pillow Proof Dry Shampoo

Packaging - 5 (excellent)
Scent - 2 (not very good)
Application - 3 (average)
Lasting Effect - 5 (excellent)
Feeling on the Hair - 3 (average)
Overall:



I am not a huge fan of this product overall. It smells like powder and aerosol, not pleasant at all. It absorbs the oils on your hair really well, but tends to be kind of white and ashy looking. The effects of it last all day which is a definite bonus, but it does dry out the area that you spray it on and makes your hair feel stiff. It's just not worth the price point for something that performs like a cheap product.

Friday, June 8, 2018

REVIEW: Karity Concealer

Packaging - 3 (average)
Shade Range - 4 (very good)
Pigmentation - 5 (excellent)
Wear - 5 (excellent)
Texture - 5 (excellent)
Overall:
 

I was pleasantly surprised by this palette. I kind of got it on a whim, I have been looking for a decent concealer palette for a while. I have a concealer that I use for myself, but I needed on for my pro kit. All that I had tried were either to soft and creamy (so they would wear off quickly) or simply didn't cover without 60 layers of product. Karity claims to be pro quality at a low price point (which a lot of brands do) and when I was buying their lip lock and their eye shadow I decided to grab this too. Why not right?

So let's start with the packaging. It's nothing special for sure. It's your standard cardboard packaging, but it does look nice and sleek which I like. The biggest bummer to me with the packaging is that when I depotted it (which was super easy to do with it's cardboard packaging) I found that the metal tins the concealer are in are not compatible with a magnetic palette. This was odd to me because their eye shadow singles are compatible with magnetic palettes and they sell their own empty palettes themselves. So why not all of their products work with them, I have no idea.

The shade range is really good. It's actually better than pictured. It has a white, yellow and pink adjuster. It has  super fair, light, medium and dark rows of shades each with a warm, neutral and pink undertone. The dark shades are darker in real life than pictured. The thing that took them down to a four is I would have liked to have seen a black adjuster for super dark skin. This is worth a full point to me because inclusiveness matters.

These are super pigmented, I was really surprised by the formula's quality. It is creamy but not heavy, it has buildable coverage and I am just a general fan. It lasts all day, application is smooth, and I have so few complaints about the actual formula or wear. And at only $24, I'm not sure you can beat this palette to be honest (which breaks it down to $1.67 each).


Click here to check out Karity.com and click here to go directly to the eye shadows themselves!.  

Use the code FRIEND-C6H9JVH at checkout for $5 off your order of $10 or more!
If for some reason the coupon code isn't working, click here for $5 off.







Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Baking 101

picture credit: BuzzFeed
Baking is not very hard. But you've probably heard of it before and seen pictures like this → → → → → →

Why are people "baking", what is it, what does it do, what should I use and how do I do it? I am going to answer all those questions here.

Baking is a technique that has been used for years in the drag community. It includes taking translucent or setting loose powder, applying it in a thick layer to your face and allowing it to sit for 5-10 minutes. When you do this, the heat from your face sets the makeup you are wearing and fills in fine lines and wrinkles It creates a smooth and flawless finish that lasts longer.

When baking you need a blending sponge, a loose powder brush and some loose powder (either setting or finishing). you don't need much.

What's the difference between translucent and setting powder?
click on this link to get this question answered.


To recap, the difference is that setting powder is often tinted, is a larger powder meant to keep everything underneath from moving and can be heavier, where a finishing powder is very fine and silk-like and is made to fill in fine lines and wrinkles and give you an airbrushed and poreless look. Finishing powder isn't typically worn every day and is always the last step AFTER setting powder and setting spray.

So how does this relate to baking? You can use either the setting or finishing powder to bake, but your results will be different depending on what you use. The light nature of a finishing powder definitely gives a more pore less look, and is ideal for someone with aging, wrinkled or textured skin. The Setting powder may be to heavy and exaggerate the look of fine lines and wrinkles for someone with more mature skin. However if you have elastic and smooth skin, a setting powder will likely keep your makeup on longer and truly give you that "awake" look.

What does baking your makeup do? When you bake your makeup you are basically hyper-setting your complexion to make it look brighter and to give an extra layer of protection from creasing and wear. It also prevents oil from breaking down your makeup or ruining it. It often gives that awake and fresh look.

How do you actually bake your makeup? First apply your primer, foundation, and concealer. Some people do baking as a last step, but that is up to you. However you need your complexion on before you bake. So do your primer, foundation and concealer. Get all blended. Now using a blending sponge pick up a heavy layer of your loose powder. Then Place it on the parts of your face that you'd like to "bake". This is almost always done under the eyes, but also done on the chin, bridge of the nose and forehead. Sometimes also on the highest part of your cheekbones (but only on the cheekbones AFTER highlighter has been applied).

Once you've placed your powder wait for 5-10 minutes and the powder "bake". The idea is that the heat from your face is combining with the powder to compound it and powerfully set and brighten your makeup. While doing this you can move onto an unrelated activity, or do your lipstick or I like to do my eyes while baking, because the excessive layer of powder under my eyes usually catches all of the fall out from my eye shadow.

Once your time is up use a powder brush to brush off any of the loose powder under your eyes and around your face. Literally "wipe" it off with the brush and tap the excess off the brush before swiping again. It's that simple. Apply it, wait, brush it off. Done.

What to use to bake, I am going to give you my favorite setting and finishing powder specifically marketed for baking, but there are a lot of great choices. Check out this link for more options.

The Makeup Revolution Baking Powder has a silk like texture, and is similar to a finishing powder. It is specifically marketed for baking and is a little heavier than your typical finishing powder, but not as heavy as a setting powder. I seriously love it for baking, and it's a steal of a price. It also comes in four shades and it's pictured on the left.
 
The Temptu Invisible difference Finishing Powder is what I use in my pro kit and is a dynamite finishing powder. Light weight and perfect for mature skin. pictured on the right.


Last is the Cover FX Perfect Setting Powder which comes in a light-medium shade as well as a deep tonal value, but is mainly translucent. It's a great setting powder and works exactly how you want it to. It is a little heavier than finishing powder, but not to heavy or chalky. Pictured on the left. 


 



Monday, June 4, 2018

REVIEW: LAQA&CO Lip Lube

Packaging - 5 (excellent)
Scent - 5 (excellent)
Pigmentation - 2 (not very good)
Wear Time - 2 (not very good)
Ease of Application - 1 (terrible)

Overall:





I do not recommend this product. I love the packaging and it does come in a twist up and down tube. It also smells like mint (which I love!) but that is all the good there is. This "lip lube" barely even changes the tonality of the lips. You really wont get much color from it. It wears of quickly and the application is terrible because it doesn't go on evenly. I have tried this product over  5 times and never have I ever been able to get an even application from it. Skip this one and move onto a different tinted balm.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

REVIEW: Karity Eye Shadow

 Packaging - 4 (very good)
Variety - 5 (excellent)
Pigmentation - 5 (excellent)
Texture - 5 (excellent)
Value - 6 (incredible)
Overall:


I have been incredibly impressed by Karity thus far as a brand honestly. This eye shadow is amazing and can hang with the best of them. It's creamy and soft in texture, it's pigmented, and it lasts a long time. There are over 45 different shades, and you can get them as singles or in palettes. The packaging is interesting though. I usually like my shadows to come int heir own compact, that is easy to depot them from. This comes in a small cardboard pouch and is just the single pan. It's meant to be put into a metal palette like a ZPalette or on of their own metal palettes. However most brands that sell these single shadows in a pan like this they come in a cardboard envelop you have to slide it in and out of. This actually has a top that folds up in the cardboard envelop as well. It's not sturdy, but it's a lot better than the norm.There is more protection and less opportunity for damage when sliding it in and out of the packaging.

The best  part though? The price point. It's only $4 per shadow! Most brands that I feel have this quality are $10+ per shadow pan! That includes Anastasia Beverly Hills (I REALLY feel this is as good as them!), MAC, Urban Decay, and Tarte. I actually feel this is better than UD and Tarte too! In the palettes these break down to under $1.50 each!Although if you get a palette the pans are not magnetic palette compatible, but a few ZPalette magnetic stickers should do the trick.

Click here to check out Karity.com and click here to go directly to the eye shadows themselves!.  

Use the code FRIEND-C6H9JVH at checkout for $5 off your order of $10 or more!
If for some reason the coupon code isn't working, click here for $5 off.

Friday, June 1, 2018

What Makes this Blog Different?

I recently added a new tab to this website and decided I should make it a post too. "why this blog is different" is an explanation to new comers about what sets my blog apart form other beauty gurus and bloggers across the internet. Hopefully you agree with my assessment. Feel free to tell me if you'd like to see something different.



I am a licensed cosmetologist. I actually started this blog way back when I began cosmetology school. And I am not making that up either. There are all kinds of shady "hairstylists" out there on tv and YouTube, but when you want to get an appointment? It's a 6 month+ wait and haircuts start at $300. Yeah right! You can click here or go to www.AngelaWoodwardCosmetology.com to see my prices, pictures of hair and makeup I have done, where my salon is at, my hours there and more. You can even set up an appointment with me! I work at a locally owned, affordable, family salon in Spanish Fork, Utah. A wash, cut and style starts at $26, and I usually have an opening within 2 weeks.

Because of my education I truly know and understand hair. I know how it works, it's chemical makeup and how it reacts to things. I understand your scalp, skin and follicles on that same level. I also have understanding and knowledge of ingredients and what matters in skin and hair care. I share all of these things with you in a lot of my posts.

Ingredients MATTER to me. You will see throughout my blog that while I do tend to favor professional high quality products, I do not love them all. And I also do support a lot of affordable and accessible brands. But it's all about the ingredients. I read every single label, and anything I don't know what is, I google it. A lot of high end brands have sold to and started putting really poor quality ingredients in their products and I do my best to educate on that and review it accordingly.

 I do not have a staff of 50 people I pay to churn out articles. I publish 3-5 posts a week, and I write them all myself. I put a lot of time and care into each image and word I write, but I am not infallible. I am sure you'll notice grammar and spelling errors every now and again. Forgive me!

 That's right! This is not a major source of income for me, and I did this for YEARS before I got views from more than a few friends and family members. But I love beauty products, I love information, I love research and I love to share what I love! This is a passion of mine. At the salon I am widely known as "the product girl" and the other stylists consistently refer their clients to me for styling and product consultations to help them find the right things for them. I love this. This is what I do. I just want to share that with others.

 No ads, anywhere. I don't have ads on this website. There are some click through links, but you will not find banner ads anywhere to be found. Why? Because I hate them. You do too. I don't need them. This is a passion not an income for me. I don't make money off of spamming you guys because I hate it too.

Sometimes I do get paid for posts or given free products to review. But I am totally transparent about this process. People will reach out to me (usually through my contact form on the right hand side of the page) and ask me to review their items. I generally oblige by picking out items I think my readers will like or respond to. I then give an honest review of the product. If I don't like it, it will get a bad review. People can pay me $50 to ensure that if I don't like a product I do not post any review instead of posting a bad one, but I will NEVER post a good review for something I do not like.

I also do not posts other people's reviews and I do not post reviews for things I have not tried yet.

The only other option is sometimes people would like me to post a link to their website to purchase items I am reviewing. I have them pay me a fee to do so. However  that fee varies because I actually have a base rate, and then I total the cost of the item and shipping form their website and add it together and round up. I use a fake name attached to a different email address to order the item to my parents home, so that I can see if the website has the real genuine product and not a knock off. They sign an agreement stating they have authentic product. In the event I do get back a knock off I will get rid of the link and let them know why with no refund (as stated our contract). And since I have tried all of these products personally and reviewed them myself, it's easy for me to spot fakes for the most part.



Let me know if you have any questions or what you'd like to see changed! Thank you for reading and I hope you have a fabulous day!