My holy grail makeup products

   Hello there! I've been wondering how to start off this blog these past few days and last night it finally clicked. I decided to share my all time favorite makeup products - those that I can't walk out of the house (most of the time) without using them.

   These are my go to products, those that I use every day and of which I keep backups in case I either finish them or in the very unfortunate case- lose them. It has happened. :(

+ I categorized them into face products, eye products, lip products and tools.

   Alright, so without further ado, these are the products:


Makeupforever HD foundation in N120
   I've been in love with this foundation for over a year and a half now. It gives off an airbrush finish to the skin but it's not cakey at all. It's gives medium coverage and it's very easy to build it up by adding another layer without it feeling heavy on your skin. I used to use the N125 which would be great at summer when I'm tanned but right now I prefer the N120.
   It has yellow undertones and I felt like the N125 had more rosy undertones so the 120 fits my skin tone a lot better. I recommend swatching them on a bigger portion of your skin or asking for a tester (if they have them available) so you can go outside and see if the colors are either too dark or too light for your skin. I chose the N125 without doing that so when I used it the next day and went outside I found that it was too dark for my skin at that time.
Make up for ever Mat Velvet Oil-free foundation in #35

    Another foundation that I use frequently is the Mat Velvet+, again from Make up for ever. Due to my combination skin I get quite oily, especially around my nose so what I do is I use a small quantity of this foundation in combination with my HD one.
   I rarely use it alone since it's a little too dark for my face during winter time, but with the Mat Velvet+ you get more coverage. I prefer using it with my HD foundation because I prefer the finish I get by using them together.

   These are the swatches for the two foundations. You can clearly see that the HD is a lot more yellow and lighter than the Mat Velvet+, which is darker and has more rosy undertones.

   Right now you can probably tell what brand I prefer for my foundations and concealers. I find that after using products from so many different brands (including drugstore ones) the Makeup for ever line is one of the best I've used so far, it matches my skin tone and they are very good quality.
   In the image above I've swatched my favorite concealer (EVER). I have REALLY dark under eye circles due to both genetics and lack of sleep. I've used dozens of eye creams over the years which never seem to help but right now I've been using the StriVectin-EV- Get even dark circle corrector (which I plan on reviewing very soon). Click on this to read more about this product on the company's website 
   The Make up for ever full cover concealer tends to be a lot more dry than other liquid concealers but by using your fingers you warm up the product so you're able to blend it out easily. I actually  recommend applying this with your fingers rather than using a brush. 
   It's very long-lasting (it's waterproof), rarely gets into the creases under the eyes so touch-ups are not necessary.

   The Shiseido translucent loose powder is the first one I've used of this kind and I'm on my third one in about three years. It lasts so much I actually keep checking how much there is left of it in the pot (jar, whatever you want to call it!) and can't get over the fact that this 18g powder can last over a year.   
   In the meantime I've purchased a few other loose powders but they don't ever come close to the Shiseido one. This keeps my face matte for up to 4-6 hours without blotting or applying some more of it, lightens up my face and makes the skin feel very silky and at the same time keeps everything in place- foundation, concealer, blush etc.
  I admit I was a little taken aback when I first purchased it, I saw that the powder was white- I thought that it would either make me look very pale and look totally unnatural but it's completely invisible on the skin, it does lighten up the face but it makes you look more fresh and it gives off a sheer glow.
Blushes by Benefit: Coralista and Dallas
   I've never really used blushes that much before I tried the ones from Benefit, I find that the colors are very pretty and can be used on most skin tones. These two are my favorite of the bunch. They're very versatile, they can be used for various makeup looks, they look perfect during summertime and they give you that healthy glow during wintertime. 
   I tend to use Dallas when I want a more contoured look to my cheeks, usually when I wear less eyeshadow or none at all, when I just want a fresh looking face. 
   Coralista is most used when I just want that rosy glow to my face, I usually use it during wintertime when my face gets quite pale and I want just a little bit of color on my cheeks.


   Moving on to the eye products, I wanted to share my favorite eyeshadow primer. It used to be the Urban Decay primer potion one but one day I decided I should experiment more so I bought the Lorac behind the scenes eye primer. 
   I can truthfully say that it's as good as the Urban Decay one if not even better. It keeps my eyeshadow in place without any creases for an entire day without it feeling dry on the lids.
   I LOVE it. Here is the link to their website: clickie!

Jane Iredale Purebrow-brow gel in #Brunette
   I've never really payed too much attention to my brows either than plucking them and keeping them in a nice, tidy shape until I bought this from Jane Iredale. This was the first product I've purchased from this brand, I admit I didn't think too much about it until I tried it on and I wondered how and why it took my so long to try something like this and discover that I absolutely love it.
   I have thick eyebrows. They're also very dark. Darker than my natural hair color, actually! That's why I always kept well away from eyebrow products such as pencils and powders. I never thought they would help in any way or change the appearance of my eyebrows other than thicken them up even more and make me look kind of silly. Oh how wrong was I.
   The Jane Iredale brow gel has lovely, natural colors which help by contouring your eyebrows, it also helps you keep them in place due to it being a gel.
   I recommend wiping the excess off (especially from the end of the brush) before using it so you won't get too much product on your brows.

   My love for the Urban Decay eyeshadows has started about 6-7 years ago when I bought my first palette. Since then I bought other four palette's which I love just as much as I love the first one. 
   They're very pigmented, long-lasting, come in very cute, attractive boxes. They also have very fun names- for example one of the eyeshadows I love the most is one called AC/DC (which is one of my favorite bands also).
   I chose to review the Naked palette because it's the one I use the most. For everyday makeup I usually use browns, beige, peach, pink colors so I prefer using this one as it has most of the colors I need. 
   For a day look I would use the color #Naked on the entire lid, pat a little #toasted or #Sidecar on beneath the crease then blend it out with #Buck or even #Hustle and finish it off with #Virgin on the brow bone and in the inner corner of the eye. You can achieve a smoky brown eye by doing that or you can go for a black smoky eye by using #Creep and/or #Gunmetal and finish it off with #Virgin on the brow bone, inner corner and even on the lid.
MUFE-Aqua liner (waterproof) in #13 and Dior-Diorshow art pen in #095 catwalk black

   I've always loved eyeliners (both liquid and pencil or gels) so I'm always bound to buy ones that I haven't tried before but I always seem to return to my trusty Make up for ever liquid eyeliner and my felt tip Dior. 
   They both deliver a flawless cat eye look, you can easily line the lower lash line with the Dior and connect with the top part in the outer corner of the eye. I recommend resting your elbow on something sturdy such as a table when applying the eyeliners, it's a lot more easy to achieve the straight lines and the flick when your arm's resting on something. 
Rimmel London-Scandaleyes (waterproof) in #001 black, Collistar-Smoky eyes professional pencil in #302 and Chanel-Le Crayon Yeux in #01

   I usually use the pencil eyeliner when I want to line my lower lash line and I smudge it so it looks more smoky or I either use them when I want to achieve a quick smoky eye.
   I find that the Rimmel London one is the best one for smudging but it's not as long lasting as the Collistar or the Chanel. It applies a bit more smooth than the other two but it doesn't stay in place too long although it's waterproof.
   I chose the Collistar pencil because I like the fact that it's a dark brown so it's not as harsh as the other two, which are both black. It's actually meant for doing the smoky eye look, it comes with a sponge end so you don't have to carry one around. The Collistar pencil is very long lasting.  
   Another pencil that comes with a sponge end is the Chanel one, this one is again, PERFECT for doing a smoky eye or for smudging it under the lower lash line. It's not as harsh as the Rimmel London pencil so it can be used on the crease and blended instead of using an eyeshadow. 
   Here are the swatches- without and with flash:
Left to right: Chanel, Collistar, Rimmel London, Make up for ever and Dior.


MUFE-Rouge Artist in #N2

   I love lip products- lipsticks, stains, tints. I've been searching for a perfect nude lipstick for myself for over a year but never found that perfect one that suited my skin tone and didn't make look weird/pale or washed out . I also have very pigmented lips so I was looking for a nude lipstick that would actually show up on my lips even when I didn't put on a little foundation or concealer on my lips to make them less pigmented.
   I fell in love with this lipstick from Make up for ever. It's pigmented yet it's not matte- it feels silky and it's also very conditioning- PERFECT for the wintertime when most people get the chapped lips syndrome :).
   I also bought a lip liner from the same brand which I LOVE- super long-lasting and I'm amazed by how many colors they have available.
MUFE-Aqua lip in #1C

Shu Uemura eyelash curler
  Ok so I've always been fascinated by eyelash curlers but two years ago I bought a drugstore one and it literally chopped off dozens of lashes. Naturally, I told myself that I will never EVER use one again but after about a year my eyelashes grew out (to my amazement- even stronger than before, longer) and I decided to buy myself a Shu Uemura curler. I own another four- two from Sephora and another two from E.L.F. which I thought were great before purchasing the Shu Uemura. 
   It's PERFECT. Doesn't tug, doesn't damage my lashes but at the same time- curls them like crazy! I sometimes don't even bother putting on mascara due the fact that the curls lasts up to 5-6 hours, sometimes even more. There are mornings when I wake up and my lashes are still curled so yeah, I've found my perfect eyelash curler- it's worth every penny.
MUFE #144 wavy
   I have dozens of brushes but I've never loved and use one like I use the #144 from Make up for ever. I use it to apply eyeshadow all over the lid especially. It's soft, tapered- you can tell it's a high quality makeup brush.
Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman-expert face brush

Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman-stippling brush
    I have numerous foundation brushes- flat ones, domed ones, stippling brushes, most of them are on the pricy side so when I found out that the Real Techniques brushes are available on a website in my country and I saw the prices I immediately ordered a few then ordered a couple more after a few months.
   These two are my favorites- the domed one is perfect for both powder and liquid foundations. I find that it's best used to achieve more high coverage results whereas the stippling brush gives a more light application- but it can be built up, of course.
   Both brushes are easy to wash and they maintain their shape really well. I've had no shedding from any one of the brushes although I've used them for about four months already.

   This is my cat Zoe, who was sitting on the white piece of cardboard I had set up as a background for the photos when I came back from washing the swatches off my arm. She probably thought I needed some help so she sat down and posed for the camera.

   So those are my holy grail makeup products. I plan on sharing my point of view on the other products I use frequently, (if not daily) but the ones I reviewed in this post are the ones I prefer and up until now have worked great for me.
   The next post is going to be about my daily skincare routine- a kind of a "holy grail skincare products" this time, so stay tuned for my next post and THANK you so much for reading!


1 comment:

  1. Really want to try Makeup Forever! Is it available to buy online in the UK?xx
    There is a MAC lipstick giveaway of your choice over on my blog!xx
    Katherine Rose | Uk Beauty Blog