Recent Beauty Favorites {July edition}

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Hey dolls! It's been a while since I've shared some of my recent beauty favorites. These aren't necessarily new products, but they are new to me, and I've pretty much fallen in love with each and every one of them. Somehow they've made their way into my beauty routine, and I'll tell you exactly why and how I use them.

Before I get to the products, I wanted to let you know that this post does contain affiliate links, which means that if you happen to purchase said item through the link, I get compensation for it. I've also included regular links to the brand websites too, but in cases where the item can be found cheaper somewhere else (like on Amazon) I let you know and linked you to the better deal (where I purchased it from). I'm just sharing a good deal when I see one!

Alright, now for the fun stuff!

e.l.f Studio Contour Palette | $6

Hallelujah! Finally, an inexpensive contour palette that really delivers and that doesn't cost and arm and a leg. I can't tell you how much I love this palette, and the fact that it's only $6 is crazy. The matte colors are perfect for highlighting and contouring the face, and there's one shimmery highlight color that I love to use on my brow bones and on the tops of my cheek bones for a bit of a pop. I use a combination of the two darkest colors to contour, shade, and sculpt my cheekbones, around my forehead, along my jawline, and on the sides of my nose. Love, love, love. I hope they keep this item forever! *Side note- this one is actually a brand new product to the e.l.f. line, and I think it's only available online right now. I haven't found it in stores (yet). 

Here's a little highlighting & contouring cheat sheet I found on Pinterest.

Biore Self Heating One Minute Mask | $5.99 {$4.54 on Amazon}

I actually did a sponsored post for this mask a few weeks ago and it's become one of my absolute favorites. I promise, I'd never write a review (especially a paid-for one) for a product I didn't actually like or use. Seriously, just read the post on why I dig this mask.

Loreal Youth Code Serum Intense | $24.99 {$9.09 on Amazon}

OK, this one isn't really new to me, but I just started using it again after going without it for a long time. I love the way this serum makes my skin feel- it's velvety soft, my skin tone looks more even, and my foundation goes on so much more smoothly when I've prepped my clean skin with this (followed up with my day moisturizer or night cream/oil). I noticed a difference in the texture of my skin by day 3 of using this Youth Code serum. Here's the other thing- this serum is almost identical to an amazing Lancome product called Genifique When I worked for Lancome (who is owned my Loreal) I used Genifique, and I can tell you that both serums look and feel almost identical, and I had virtually the same results from each of them. I'm convinced that Youth Code and Genifique are basically the same thing, except 1 oz of the Lancome version is $78. 

Covergirl LashBlast Super Sizer mascara | $5.99

Since my last experience with Covergirl mascara went so well, I decided to try out another new one that I've seen everyone raving about online. Plus, I was already at Target again and I think there's some kind of rule that says you can't leave Target without buying another tube of mascara. Anyway, I picked up The Super Sizer in from their LashBlast line, which boasts "400% more corner-to-corner volume for full, fanned out lashes." The instructions said something about twirling the wand, but I couldn't really get my hand to cooperate, so the first application was a bit gloppy. When I tried the next day I ended up with some pretty amazing looking lashes. I'm not sure if they were 400% bigger or what, but they definitely looked longer and fuller than with my other 6 or 7 mascaras that are floating around in my cosmetic drawer right now. I've been using The Super Sizer pretty much every day now, alternating with my other new favorite, CG's Full Lash Bloom

Veet Ready-to-Use Wax Strips | $9.99 {$6.25 on Amazon}

I have to admit, I bought these wax strips as a last ditch effort and thought for sure that they were going to suck and leave me having to shave every single day of my vacation. Wrong! My laziness and failure to make it to the beauty supply for more wax actually worked out perfectly, because I ended up really liking these cool little strips. Plus, they were so much faster, easier, and way less messy than my regular pot of wax! All you do is rub the strip between your hands a few times to warm up the wax, then place them on your leg, rub down over it firmly, and pull it off while holding the skin taught. Easy-peasy! The hair comes out and there's no messy, dripping wax or dipping sticks to worry about. You can even re-use the strips a 2nd, 3rd, and sometimes even a 4th time, depending on how sticky it remains. I waxed both of my lower legs in about 15 minutes and only used 10 or 12 strips. I really didn't think these would work, but I'm pretty sure I'm never going to buy another pot of wax again for home use. These are the way to go and anyone can figure it out- no experience required! (But do make sure to read the instructions and safety precautions in their entirety first, of course). 

PFB Vanish + Chromabright | $29.00 {$22.36 on Amazon}

Again with the shaving. Ugh. Along with it usually comes razor burn and ingrown hairs for me, which is why I try to wax when I can. But I still end up shaving a lot, I need something that really works for ingrown hairs and the scars that they leave behind (especially if they've been picked at). I read a lot of Amazon reviews before deciding on this stuff, and I'm glad I did my research because I'm really pretty happy with it. I just roll this on the sensitive skin areas as soon as I dry off after a shower, and then sometimes (when I remember) again right before I go to bed. I had some pretty dark looking spots around my bikini line that I wanted gone, and after about a month of using this they are much, much less noticeable. I'm going to keep using this for the rest of the summer and will have to see if there's anymore improvement, but it's definitely prevented me from getting any more new ingrown hairs since using it, which is pretty awesome in itself. 

Those are six of my latest favorites, and I've already got a whole slew of new stuff to try next! Have you used or heard of these ones? Or do you know of something I've just got to try out? Let me know in the comment section below- I'd love to discuss it from one beauty junkie to another.

Don't forget to enter the $25 Paypal/Visa gift card giveaway I have going on right now. Hop over to that post and check out how you can earn extra box tops for your local schools and get your entries in because one lucky person is going to have a little extra spending cash :)

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