PRODUCTS I’M LOVING & HATING | Favorites & Fails

I haven’t done a favorites & fails in forever! A huge chunk of that was “I don’t have time” and also, a lot of items were still the same in my daily routine. But now, bum bum BUM (cue dramatic music)… I have new items to talk about with you! While this eyeshadow palette is … Continue reading “PRODUCTS I’M LOVING & HATING | Favorites & Fails”

I haven’t done a favorites & fails in forever! A huge chunk of that was “I don’t have time” and also, a lot of items were still the same in my daily routine.

But now, bum bum BUM (cue dramatic music)… I have new items to talk about with you!

While this eyeshadow palette is hard to get a hold of right now, it’s insanely popular for a reason and has the perfect set of shades for transitioning your makeup from summer to fall. The price is oh so right at only $16 and the shadows blend out like a dream. An added bonus? It’s a spot on dupe for a certain $129 high end palette… yep, you read that correctly!

This brand new mascara has quickly become an every day item. Seriously, I haven’t used anything else since ripping open the package in delight! If you’re obsessed with high end favorites like the Too Faced Better Than Sex, Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir, and more… try this. You won’t be disappointed. It doesn’t transfer or flake on me and my lashes look bombdotcom.

(Unfortunately) I’ve become obsessed with this facial essence as a part of my nighttime skincare routine (I say unfortunately because hoooly $$$). Also unfortunately… I’m loving this super pricey skin cream. I can’t tell for certain yet if it’s making my face look better than a newborn baby’s cheeks, but it sure feels amazing and I do see results in the short time I’ve been using it!

These sneakers are super comfy, casual and cute, the best of all worlds! I love the texture and also the little leather detailing. A perfect summer to fall shoe for ankle length jeans as the leaves start to change. Bonus: the insole is super comfortable!

Another fun fact is that I’m trying to move toward a more plant based diet. It has so many benefits for health and the environment. Plus, it can’t hurt to just try something new and good for you! As someone who was never much of a meat eater anyway, I love the idea of finding my nutrition and protein through foods I enjoy more. That being said, sometimes I want a quick way to get ahead of my daily greens. This green superfood is amazing! (The flavor takes a bit to get used to, but that’s part of making the diet change too, your taste buds change! Add it to juice instead of water until you’re used to it or try one of their flavored options, the berry one is my favorite.)

On to the negative Nancy part of the post… I do have a few fails to discuss. As always, these just didn’t work for me, that doesn’t mean they’re not someone’s holy grail item!

This lip balm kind of sucks. Plain and simple!! I’ve tried two of them, thinking one was a fluke. But alas, no. It has a gritty texture that’s not necessarily exfoliating but is certainly annoying. It’s also no where as hydrating as the name implies. HARD PASS!

These liquid lipsticks are from one of my absolute favorite brands! The colors are cute on the lips, wear wonderfully and feel lovely… BUT the formula is a disaster in its packaging! I’ve tried to store these upright, but no matter what I do, a disgusting oil seems to leak out of the package. No thanks, I’ll save my hands, purse, and makeup bag the trouble. (Anyone else having this problem??!)

That’s it for the favorites & fails this time, I’d love to hear what some of yours are!

Xoxo, Meeghan 

HIGHLIGHTERS FOR PALE SKIN | Glow for the {Pale} Gods

Even though 2017 is starting to wind down (but whyyyy is Christmas decor in the stores already?!), highlighting is definitely not going out of style any time soon. With that being said, the coming short, cold days crush any hope I have of not being as pale as Casper the Ghost… so here are my … Continue reading “HIGHLIGHTERS FOR PALE SKIN | Glow for the {Pale} Gods”

Even though 2017 is starting to wind down (but whyyyy is Christmas decor in the stores already?!), highlighting is definitely not going out of style any time soon. With that being said, the coming short, cold days crush any hope I have of not being as pale as Casper the Ghost… so here are my favorite highlighters for pale skin with swatches (not in any particular order, including drugstore and high end).

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GLOW TO THE GODS! (click product name to shop)
Anastasia Beverly Hills Illuminator in Starlight: Let’s get this one out of the way because it’s technically discontinued (WHYYYYYYY!?). These compact highlighters from ABH are amazing and extremely glowy, but it seems they’ve since transitioned to only producing palettes?? If you can get your hands on this or the shade ‘So Hollywood’, I suggest you do.

OFRA Cosmetics Highlighter in Beverly Hills: I picked this up in the Ulta 21 Days of Beauty sale and it is blinding. Wear your sunnies! It’s nice that you get 5 colors in one pan or can mix for a beautiful 6th shade, but for fair skin tones, the deepest 1-2 shades of the “wheel” won’t work alone, you’ll need to mix those with another shade. Regardless, it’s stunning and a little goes a very long way.

theBalm Mary Lou Manizer Highlighter: An oldie but a goodie for me! Mary Lou is a cult classic for a reason, with a lovely pale champagne color that works on the face, eyes, collar bone, etc. I find that you can build this one up or sheer it out, a perfect formula for anyone really.

BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed Highlighter in Champagne POP: This shade was originally created by Jaclyn Hill but has since become part of BECCA’s permanent line. It works well on my fair skin, but if you are a little bit more fair, then try Moonstone, and if you are extremely fair, try Pearl (which is almost a white highlight). This formula is super creamy, soft and pigmented, truly beautiful on the skin. But fair warning, being a somewhat soft pressed formula, the pans can break easily, so don’t drop it!

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Laura Geller Baked Gelato Swirl Illuminators: Everyone talks about Gilded Honey (that highlighter alone blew up the Laura Geller brand to household name), but not enough credit is given to the other shades which are better suited to fair skin (Peach Glow is my favorite!). I honestly love these, and as they’re a baked formula, you can wear them dry or wet the brush for a truly intense highlight.

ColourPop Super Shock Highlighter in Flexitarian: I raved about this in my Drugstore Must Haves blog and it’s one I have to try not to reach for every day, I love it so much. (And it’s cheap!) You can apply these lightly for a more subtle glow, or pile it on to crank up the wattage. All Super Shock formula products were designed to be applied with your fingers, but I apply it with a damp beauty sponge, to make the highlight melt into my skin.

Marc Jacobs Glow Stick in Spotlight: This is the most silly looking package of all… and yet AWESOME. It looks like a mini deodorant but the shade is gorgeous for fair skin. It’s a bit more sheer than ColourPop Flexitarian for example, but oh so lovely. I don’t recommend applying directly from the stick, for some reason that always disturbs my foundation??

Benefit Watt’s Up: Everyone RAVESSSSS about this champagne gold cream highlight and it’s true, it’s super pretty! The formula is more of a cream to powder feel, so it dries down nicely if you want to avoid a wet highlight. It takes forever to get through, so I’ve never actually had to purchase it… hellooooo Sephora point perk freebies!

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Essence Pure Nude Highlighter: This is the PERFECT subtle “look at that naturally glowing skin” kind of highlighter. I can’t begin to express just how perfect this is if you’re not into megawatt highlights, or you want a natural glow. Seriously, it’s under $5 and truly reminds me of so many more expensive brands.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders: These are less “beaming highlight” and more “subtle glow” (they do have their Strobe Powders for a bit more glow). I love these, and so many companies try to compare but just never are exactly as perfect. A must have for Bridal looks, photoshoots or even daily life. Take the time to go swatch these at a Sephora and see how they just make your skin look so healthy and luminous.

e.l.f. Baked Highlighter in Moonlight Pearls: This is a highlight that everyone in the beauty community seems to know about but doesn’t mention regularly! It truly is gorgeous and can be built up to look blinding. It looks champagne in the pan but comes across very light when built up. Another baked product so you really can make it shine even more with a wet brush.

e.l.f. Shimmer Highlighting Powder in Pearl Glow: Pearl Glow came out after the initial launch of the e.l.f. Shimmer Highlighters and for whatever reason, the formula of this particular shade is worlds above the next deepest (I only own those two lightest shades so I can’t compare otherwise). It’s sooo buttery, smooth, and a super high bling pigment that doesn’t emphasize any texture or sit awkwardly on my skin. (FYI I found the other shade I have to be more chunky/glittery?? Weird.)

Jeffree Star Skin Frost in Peach Goddess: Ok, Jeffree Star rubs me the wrong way… but darn it this is a gorgeous highlighter! I picked it up for more than 50% off or else I wouldn’t have (seriously, such a click bait YouTuber, ugh) but it’s truly super glowy. I have to use it sparingly so I don’t go overboard! The nice thing with that is seeing how huge the pan size is, I’ll have this gorgeous highlight for years.

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Tarte Amazonian Clay Highlighter in Exposed: This is the only shade of the single Tarte highlighters which I like, and let me tell you… I FRICKIN’ LOVE IT! The other shades of single highlighters are kind of mehhhh… the formula doesn’t feel the same?? Exposed though is magically perfect for my fair skin at any time of year, even when I have a bit of a tan or am more pale. (FYI, the Tarte PRO Glow To Go Palette has two gorgeous highlight shades as well.)

Wet N Wild Megaglo Highlighters: These broke the internet. Ok, the wet n wild website, but still!! I have and love Precious Petals, and these Megaglo highlighters are some of the most lux feeling drugstore highlighters around. There are also new shades out which are stunning! I need to order Blossom Glow and Golden Flower Crown for my pale self.

Kevyn Aucoin Celestial Powder in Candlelight: This is a very high end price for a gorrrrrgeous glow. There are definitely alternatives for less on the market but I just love the Kevyn Aucoin formula, subtle payoff, and ohhhh that packaging. I’m such a sucker for packaging!

Artist Couture Diamond Glow Powder in Illuminati: This one is NOT for the faint of heart. I’ve basically saved the most shiny for last but it’s beautiful! All of the Diamond Glow Powders are intense, almost too much for an everyday look. But I’ve found that they really are lovely to have in your collection if you’re a makeup artist or lover. If not really experienced, the loose highlighter is a bit difficult and/or messy to work with, but the payoff is gorgeous.

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Ok guys, that’s it for now, although I could probably recommend glowing glittery gems for daysssss. I’d love to know your favorites too, let me know in the comments. Be sure to subscribe and follow all of my fun social links around here, and please share if you loved this post! Don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel too: Meeghan Dunleavy

Xoxo, Meeghan 

DRUGSTORE MUST HAVES | THE TOP 10 {CHEAP BUT BRILLIANT} ITEMS YOU NEED

It’s no secret I love a killer beauty deal, even more so when it’s cheap AND amazing. Beauty doesn’t have to break the bank, and while I do have splurge items I can’t live without, there are brilliant beauty items in the world for any budget. Speaking of… all of the items I’ll discuss below are … Continue reading “DRUGSTORE MUST HAVES | THE TOP 10 {CHEAP BUT BRILLIANT} ITEMS YOU NEED”

It’s no secret I love a killer beauty deal, even more so when it’s cheap AND amazing. Beauty doesn’t have to break the bank, and while I do have splurge items I can’t live without, there are brilliant beauty items in the world for any budget. Speaking of… all of the items I’ll discuss below are under $10 and from the drugstore. Yes, you read that correctly… UNDER $10. I’m not kidding. Stop hyperventilating.

Without further ado, when it comes to must have drugstore products, these 10 products are always in my daily rotation.

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FABULOUS DRUGSTORE PRODUCTS: (click product name to shop)
Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Foundation: A fabulous drugstore foundation that will leave you looking natural and smooth all day. (If the matte look isn’t your thing, they have a dewy formula also.) This is versatile enough to wear with minimal other makeup, or as a great base for a more dramatic look. The coverage is medium, slightly buildable, and will last all day on your face.

Maybelline Fit Me Concealer: This concealer gives a very natural finish, and is best suited to even out the complexion vs hardcore blemish coverage (it’s not very buildable or suited to that). It doesn’t crease on me and doesn’t disappear from my face as the day goes on. (FYI: my personal preference is to set any concealer with either the IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Pressed Powder or the Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder).

Wet n Wild Photo Focus Pressed Powder: This is a gorgeous powder for setting down your foundation and/or concealer without adding too much coverage. Again, perfect for my more natural days, when I just want to fight shine and cover minor imperfections. I use a light dusting of this daily!

Physicians Formula Butter Bronzer: Ok, to be fair this is over $10 but buy it on sale! I bought mine for about $8. This bronzer is seriously like summer in a compact, it warms up your face with a very slight sheen, and is perfect to bronze or sculpt with. It also smells like a summer tropical vacation! A very buttery smooth formula which is easy to blend, and (for good reason) took the beauty community by storm.

Wet N Wild Color Icon Blush: I love blush. REALLY, REALLY LOVE IT. I own far too may to be honest, but the Wet n Wild blushes are so affordable (seriously, $2.99), come in multiple shades and have huge pans of product, how do you say no to that?! These blushes go on, and stay on, like a more expensive high end product, but will save you so much money. The two shades which are my fair skin favorites are: ‘Apri-Cot in the Middle’ and ‘Rosé Champagne’.

Wet n Wild MegaGlo Highlighting Powder: These highlighters broke the internet, literally… they crashed the Wet n Wild website and sold out everywhere! Lucky for us, they’re back and with more shades than before. These highlighters are extremely smooth, creamy and give off a crazy amazing glow for only $5. If you’re looking for a blinding highlight, these are by far one of the most amazing you can find, regardless of price.

NYX Butter Gloss: If you wear glosses and haven’t discovered these yet… GO NOW! These are about $5 and the shade range is so vast, everyone is guaranteed to find a few they love. I find these to be super comfortable on the lips, not sticky or gloopy. They also provide a nice wash of pigment. My favorites are ‘Crème Brulee’ and ‘Apple Strudel’, worn over a pinky nude lipliner or lipstick.

Rimmel London Exaggerate Lip Liner: I prefer twist up lip liners, as I never seem to have traditional pencil liners sharpened when I want them (I’m all about convenience here) and the Rimmel ones are some of my favorites. They’re pigmented, creamy and don’t skip on the lips when I’m going for a precise application. My favorite shade is ‘Addiction’, which is more of a “my lips but deeper” shade. Top that with a NYX Butter Gloss and I’m good to go!

elf Eyeshadow Palette: These palettes seem to be overlooked by many, but they shouldn’t be! If you’re looking for an every day, wearable palette then look no further than the ‘Need it Nude’ or multiple ‘Mad for Matte’ palettes! I haven’t tried it yet, but the ‘Nude Rose Gold’ palette reminds me of the Urban Decay Naked 3 palette and the ‘Mad for Matte Summer Breeze’ is a great dupe for the Too Faced Sweet Peach palette… but all for a much lower price. These are middle ground when it comes to pigmentation, but you can build up the colors.

L’Oreal Lash Paradise Mascara: This has quickly become my every day mascara. Seriously, I haven’t used anything else since ripping open the package in delight! If you’re obsessed with high end favorites like the Too Faced Better Than Sex, Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir, and more… try this L’Oreal mascara. You won’t be disappointed. It doesn’t transfer or flake on me and my lashes look bombdotcom.

ColourPop Super Shock Highlighter: (I threw this in as a #11 bonus, because while ColourPop is super affordable, it’s currently an online-only brand.) I’ve been vocal before at not loving the Super Shock Blushes, but the Highlighters… WHERE WERE YOU MY PRECIOUS!? I love ‘Glazed’ for a more subtle glow, or if I’m feeling daring I turn to ‘Flexitarian’ and crank up the wattage. For me, these are best applied with a damp beauty sponge, to make the highlight effortlessly melt into my skin. All Super Shock formula products were designed to be applied with your fingers, but I find sponges an easier way to diffuse and blend the highlighters.

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What are some of your must have drugstore products? Do tell, I’m always on the hunt for a good deal! Also, let me know if you want more drugstore favorites, or even a list of best drugstore tools/application items. Be sure to subscribe and follow all of my fun social links around here, and please share if you loved this post!

Xoxo, Meeghan