Everyday Beauty Blog: Best of Beauty 2014!

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Can you believe that 2014 is ALMOST over? This year really has just gone by super fast for me. Well, I’ll take that back… The last couple of months have gone by fast! I’m not going to lie, the beginning of the year was not the best for me, but I persevered and I am in a much better place now. For me 2014 was filled with beauty busts but the beauty champs reigned supreme for me. In lieu of a “December 2014” favorites, let’s take a look back at some of my absolutely FAVORITE products of 2014. Introducing: Everyday Beauty Blog Best of 2014!

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5.) Too Faced Melted Liquified Lipsticks ($21.00 each) – When I reviewed these fabulous liquid lippies I raved about the wear time, how they felt on my lips, the packaging ,etc. and I ragged about the shade selection. I am happy to report that Too Faced has added quite a few new shades and the line stands at a whopping 18 shades in under a year. That’s how you know a product is great: rapid line expansion. The Too Faced Melted line sports an impressive shade selection that even features a new vampy bluish, purple shade shade: Melted Villain, which is new for their Spring 2015 collection. The Too Faced Melteds are my pick for Best of Beauty 2014 Lippie!

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4.) DermOrganic Shine Spray Therapy ($19.99) – I literally just received this product two weeks ago and this leave in spray is hands down the absolute BEST I have ever tried. It is one of the few products that actually does everything it claims to: seals the cuticle, provides heat protections, adds softness and shine, etc. If you try anything from DermOrganic snag this. My hair is ridiculously shiny, soft and manageable now that I am using it. It also has a very sweet, almost candy like fragrance that I love. The DermOrganic Shin Spray Therapy is a must have, Best of Beauty 2014 Hair Product!

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3.) Make Up For Ever Artist Eyeshadows/Blushes (Price varies starting at $21.00) – 2014 saw a TON of eyeshadow releases but my pick for shadows of the year goes to Make Up For Ever and their relaunched line of powder shadows and blushes. There is an INSANE amount of shades and finishes. The quality is there on 95% of the Artist Shadows/Primer. Can’t commit to a few full sized colors? Nab the Make Up For Ever Artists’ Shadow Palette. It’s a great starting point to get you hooked on the rest of the line! The Make Up For Ever Artist Eyeshadows earned Best of Beauty 2014 Eyeshadows!

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2.) T3 Single Pass Compact Iron ($79.00) – I spent most of 2013 and 3/4’s of 2014 searching high and low, far and wide, for the best flat iron for my tresses. And I finally found it in late August! The T3 Single Pass Compact Iron is everything  need to tame my locks and get them pin straight. Combined with the DermOrganic Shine Spray Therapy, I am flaunting shiny, straight hair for days on days. I use the T3 Single Pass Compact Iron more than any other beauty tool I own earning it Best of Beauty 2014 Beauty Tool.

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1.) Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick ($44.00) – How could this awesome foundation stick not be number one? Reformulated and relaunched for Spring 2014, Bobbi Brown’s Skin Foundation Stick is EVERYTHING you want in a foundation. It wears phenomenally on it’s own, plays well with primers and powders, covers well and it looks like skin. If you have to tried this yet, you have to for 2015. This power house foundation has been a recurring favorite for me since I purchased it. Was there ever any real clear cut winner for me this year? The Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick is definitely Best of Beauty 2014 for me.

I am looking forward to 2015 for SO many reasons: fabulous new beauty products, wonderful opportunities and of course our TWINS! Happy New Year my dear readers. I hope and pray that 2015 is a happy, prosperous and joyous year for all!

X’s & O’s

Ashley

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November 2014 Monthly Favorites

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Hola! Can you believe it’s December already?!?! November went by so fast and it was a rather rough month for me due to health and some personal issues. I’m trying to get back to what passes for normal here and I am not going to lie, it’s been rough but I did have some monthly faves for November. Shopping from your collection is ALWAYS fun and I rediscovered some “new” favorites from my stash. ! Now onto my November 2014 faves….

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November 2014 Favorites

MAC Prep+Prime CC Colour Correcting SPF 30 (Adjust) – I have had this little goodie in my stash for around six months now. I stashed it away after testing it out and I broke it out after raiding my stash at the beginning of November 2014. MAC Prep+Prime CC Colour Correcting SPF 30 (Adjust) is an amazing primer but when worn alone it corrects minor flaws and gives your skin a healthy, radiant look. I am in love with this goodie from MAC.

MAC Prep+Prime CC Colour Correcting Loose (Adjust) – I bought this lose powder as a companion to the previously mentioned MAC Prep+Prime CC Colour Correcting SPF 30 (Adjust) and obviously both of these products work very well together. Alone or with other products MAC’s MAC Prep+Prime CC Colour Correcting Loose (Adjust) is just fabulous and imparts that perfect airbrush finish when paired with a standard foundation.

Make Up For Ever Artist Palette – I said #byefelicia to almost ALL my eyeshadows (and now they just sit n my beauty cabinet) and I have been in love with the new Make Up For Ever Artist Eyeshadows and this palette is has become my trusty standby for all my looks. This powerhouse palette can take me from day to night and everything in between. If you own one palette, the Make Up For Ever Artist Palette should be it!

Anastasia Brow Wiz – This will forever be in my favorites until something better comes along. Anastasia’s Brow Wiz is perfect for creating/filling in a natural brow or for creating much more dramatic brow looks. Brows frame your face and if you do one “cosmetics” related step in your everyday routine… Do your brows girl!

MAC Kohl Power Eye Pencil in Feline – Another product I have had forever hiding in my beauty stash. I love Feline as it’s an intense black that can be layered for intensity or smudged out to soften the look of your liner. While I love Feline if you’re an eye rubber or suffer from watery eyes than I’d skip this and opt for a budge proof/waterproof option.

November 2014 has been a light makeup month for me and I found myself reaching for “basics” more than anything else to pair with a bolder lip. I’ve been on a MAC kick lately and I will say they do basics very well. What were some of your November 2014 favorites? What’s on your holiday wish list? Let me know in the comments section.

Ashley

Top Beauty Buys for Fall

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Can I tell you that I am SO beyond happy that it is finally, officially, undeniably Fall. The leaves have already begun to change colors, the air is getting drier and my beauty routine can finally change. With Fall being a transitional season for fashion and beauty you might need to start stockpiling some favorites/trends for the season now! Shopping for beauty products is so much fun but it’s even better when you have a friend to shop with. While I can’t be there with you physically, load my beauty buys onto you mobile and take me with you as you seek out your own beauty buys for the Fall!

ebblog fall beauty buys 1.) Make Up For Ever Artist Palette $42 Sephora – The Make Up For Ever Artist Palette has replaced my LORAC Pro2 as my current fall favorite. I love the assortment of colors, the shadows themselves are phenomenal and it’s the perfect size for travel. I reviewed this wonderful palette here and the array of shades and finishes are just beyond perfection for the Fall. Grab the Make Up For Ever Artist Palette before it’s gone.

2 & 3.) Shea Moisture Super Fruit Complex 10 in 1 Renewal System Hair Masque and Shampoo $10.99 each Ulta – My hair just L-O-V-E-S this combo from Shea Moisture. I very rarely use a “daily” conditioner and reach for a masque because I heat style my hair all the time so I need the extra moisture and the Shea Moisture Super Fruit Complex 10 in 1 Renewal System Hair Masque definitely meets my moisture needs. The shampoo companion to the masque cleanses very well for a SLS Free shampoo. It’s hydrating but not so much so that it makes my hair greasy quickly. According to the Ulta site, these are exclusive to their store but I could have sworn I saw this line at Target as well.

4.) Anastasia Brow Wiz $21.00 – Brows to me are the most important part of your face and a good brow can just make you look a million times better. Anastasia’s Brow Wiz has been my go to brow product for as long as I have been doing makeup (close to 4 years now). It’s easy to use, you can go natural or super bold and Anastasia Brow Wiz is available in a wide variety of shades. To stick with Fall trends you can buy two shades and rock the “ombre” brow.

5.)  NYX Matte Lip Cream in Copenhagen $6.00 – Wines/Berries are once again hot for the Fall and the NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Copenhagen is your best bet for a beauty bargain that will actually perform well, not kill your lips and look great on a variety of skin tones.

6.) Lancome Nutrix Royale Body $30 – I am not usually one to go bonkers for high end body lotions BUT I got a sample of this as a Lancome gift with purchase and I fell in love with it. The scent is fresh and feminine and it cures even my diabetic dragon scales. I don’t think I will ever go without Nutrix Royale Body ever again making it a year round staple for me.

7.) EOS Lip Balm Coconut Milk $4 – EOS has been my go to balm ever since they “rolled” onto the scene a few years ago. I have yet to find anything that hydrates my lips like my trusty EOS balms. I do prefer the “milk” versions as they are a tad bit more moisturizing and perfect for my beyond chapped lips in the Fall. *Pro Tip*  Always apply lip balm in a sheer layer. Slathering your lips with any lip balm can actually contribute to further drying/chapping.

There you have it. My ABSOLUTE must have Fall Beauty Buys. See anything you plan on picking up? If you enjoyed reading my Fall Beauty Buys, check out the other ladies of The Beauty Council and their picks below.

Ashley

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Make Up For Ever Artist Shadows

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Make Up For Ever Artist Shadows are a new line of eyeshadows and blushes that are permanent to Make Up For Ever’s existing line. The Artist Shadows come in a mind blowing 210 shades with varying finishes. They are also the stars of two different Arists’ palettes:  the smaller Artist Palette (a Sephora Exclusive $42.00) and the MASSIVE 30 pan palette 30 YEARS, 30 COLORS, 30 ARTISTS (pretty much sold out now $250). Each individual pan retails for $21 and contains .07 oz of product. All 210 shades are available at Sephora and Make Up For Ever boutiques nationwide.

It’s not every day that a major cosmetics brand reformulates and relaunches their ENTIRE powder shadow line and when it does happen a relaunch can often miss its mark (>cough< Urban Decay!). Fortunately for Make Up For Ever they did an excellent job reformulating their shadows. I don’t think I have been this excited about eyeshadows in a very, very long time. The line consists of 210 shades in  an amazing and sometimes head scratching variety of shades and finishes. It was not until recently that I found out that these were meant to be shadows and blushes, which makes sense to me now as a large portion of this line are reds, oranges, corals and other traditional blush shades.

Some of you may be thinking, “$21 a pop are they nuts?!?!”. Make Up For Ever has launched a purchase incentive program with their new line of Artist Shadows : When you add 2 MAKE UP FOR EVER Artist Shadows and a Duo Palette to your basket, a $9 discount will be applied automatically at checkout ($34 for a duo). When you add 3 MAKE UP FOR EVER Artist Shadows and a Trio Palette to your basket, a $20 discount will be applied automatically at checkout ($44 for a trio).

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There shadow singles and a three pan palette with discount $44.00

If you’re interested in sampling a wider variety of the Artists Shadows for under $45 you can do what I did and purchase the Sephora Exclusive Artist Palette which retails for $42 and contains eight of the shadows that are available in the permanent line as well. I also took advantage of their pricing incentive and built my own three shade palette.

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Make Up For Ever Artist Palette $42 exclusively at Sephora.

Th shades I have sampled are fantastic and definitely worth the price of admission. The new gel-powder formula feels a bit odd to the touch but when applied/swatched the Artist Shadows I purchased are phenomenal. They apply smoothly, blend together well and are true to pan color even without a primer. I got 7-8 hours of wear time with minor fading and creasing without primer (I have oily, hooded lids) but with primer I was able to sleep in the Artist Shadows (DON’T do this!) and they looked amazing the next day.  I experienced no fallout when applying the Artist Shadows and that includes the glittery shades. And can I just say that these glitter pressed shadows are just phenomenal at adding dimension and bringing in light to a look.

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Custom Three Shade Palette L to R: 1872 (Peachy Pink, I340 (Lime Green) and M408 (Mustard)

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Artists Palette L to R: M536 (Milk Tea), I524 Pinky Beige, I550 (Olive Grey) and D652 (Celestial Earth)

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Artist Palette L to R: ME 728 (Copper Red), ME230 (Peacock Blue), D926 (Blueberry) and ME930 (Black Purple)

Now there are some duds in the bunch (none that I bought but reviewing the ENTIRE line is not a possibility for me) and the variety of shades can be a bit daunting so my suggestion is to go in store to purchase the Artist Shadows as opposed to ordering online/over the phone. I’m really not a fan of the fact that I have to spend an extra $1 to get better packaging as they come in just a tiny plastic case and the actual pan is loose. You have to purchase the one, two or three shade palette for an extra $1 just to get sturdier packaging. The pans are not magnetic so if you have a ZPalette (or a similar product) you will need to use the magnetic strips provided when you buy a ZPalette.

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The Make Up For Ever Artists Shadows are a definite beauty splurge. At $21 a pop the Artist Shadows can get quite pricey BUT they are really worth it if you’re looking for high quality shadows  that are easy to work with, intensely pigmented and available in a wide variety of shades/finishes. Have you tried the Make Up For Ever Artist Shadows yet? Let me know in the comments below.

Ashley

 

Fall 2014 Beauty Haul

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The fall is my ABSOLUTE favorite time of year. There is nothing I dislike about the fall except maybe the rain but whatevs. I’ve been on a bit of a spending spree as of late so I figured I would share my beauty related purchases with everyone. I do want to say that Ulta Beauty has the best rewards program ever especially if you get salon services there (which I do!). I used my points to redeem to pay for some of the products below. Aaaaaaand now on to my Fall 2014 Haul!

 

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Make Up Forever Artists Shadows and Artist Palette – Special shout out to Cosmetically-Challenged because she really made me excited for this new line of gel to powder shadows from Make Up Forever. You can create your own palette OR you can choose to purchase the Artist’s palette. I opted for both. You do get a discount when you create your own palette (two or three pan palette) making the shadows a bit more affordable.

T3 Single Pass Compact Iron – I need a new flat iron badly and I prefer a smaller, compact flat iron because my arms get tired really, really fast. I had been on the fence about this because it’s got just a single heat setting but it gets great reviews and I think it’s time to graduate from Chi to T3.

 

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Urban Decay Perversion Mascara – I bought the full size because I loved the sample I got in last month’s Ipsy bag.

MAC Strobe Cream – The best thing about free standing MAC Stores is they sell everything so I was able to get a travel size Strobe Cream for $10.

MAC Pearlglide Intense Eyeliner in Designer Purple – My obsession with purple is real this season!

MAC Electric Cool Eyeshadow in Highly Charged – Moar purple!

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Shea Moisture Super Fruit Complex Shampoo and Hair Masque (not pictured) – I have to thank Daydreaming Beauty for inspiring me to try this line out. Before vacation I went pretty blonde which ended up really drying my hair out. I recently went back to my natural hair color and I am hoping these products help infuse my hair with moisture.

Redken Wax Blast 10 – A recommendation from my stylist.

Too Faced Cat Eye Palette – I have been on a Too Faced high recently. Hopefully that keeps up with this incredibly cute palette!

Urban Decay Shadow Box – It was the Urban Decay Ammo Palette that really jump started my beauty obsession and this was more of a nostalgic purchase. Plus it’s pretty!

Essence All About Nude Eyeshadow – A curiosity purchase. I have seen a few good review on their new palettes. This was the one that spoke to me.

Essence Stay No Matter What Eyeshadow Pencil in Whipped White Frosting – I was craving frosting and this eyeshadow pencil is beyond pretty. I have high hopes for this!

Essence Crystal Liner in Sparkling Purple – I’m addicted to adding just a little bit of glitter to my outter v, to give it that little bit of pop.

Deborah Lippmann Nail Polish in Flash Dance – I had a $20 Nordstrom Note and I got this. It’s such a GORGEOUS color! Perfect for my toes on fall!

City Color Barely Exposed – Last but not least… I grabbed this at Five Below. I loved my last City Colors purchase so I thought I’d try this.

There you have it, my Fall 2014 haul. I am going to TRY and go on a no buy but I suspect that is going to get really, really hard for me given that Holiday 2014 is literally right around the corner. Have you been on a shipping kick lately? What are some of the new items you have picked up?

Ashley