#BrandsToWatch / MAKE Beauty

PR Sample

MAKE Beauty

If you're anything like me, you love makeup. It's fun to play with (even as an adult), can help feel more confident or maybe just appear more awake than you really are (guilty on the second one). And while I love makeup, I just don't feature it that often on the blog. It's something that gets talked about literally everywhere, so I feel its something that doesn't really set me apart from others. However, when I do feature it, I make sure its from brands that should be standing out or have a purpose.

I was recently invited to try out some samples from MAKE Beauty; a cruelty-free brand that not only has makeup, but also skincare. Of those products, a wide select of them vegan friendly. The packaging is no-fuss, clean and minimal; definitely sleek. Of all of their products, I was provided an eyeshadow in Alabaster and lipstick in Taffy.

MAKE Beauty

Alabaster is a pale matte, peachy pink that, on my medium skin, can be a used as a base. In fact, lately I've been using is as an all-over eyelid color before I do a basic wing (see here on my Instagram). It's a very powdery formula, but you can really pack it on to deliver a solid color for a base. Those who are much darker may use it as a highlight and those much more fair can use it as a nice pinky shade for the lids. See the swatch below for a close-up.

MAKE Beauty

Taffy is a medium pink with a satin finish. It appeared quite glossy in the swatch, however on my lips, it was definitely more satin. The color is quite sheer, so while it does have a tad bit of a purpley-mauvey undertone, it leans more of a bright pink once on my lips. The downside to having very pigmented lips I suppose. This lipstick wore fairly well for a few hours, however once I began eating or drinking anything, it would rub right off. The formula itself wasn't drying, but rather hydrating. It felt like a balm and was really nice.

From the two products I tried, I'll definitely get more use out of Alabaster as it will allow me to wing line it up in this B. I'm definitely impressed nonetheless, so I'll be jumping to get a few things. Speaking of, if you're in the mood, use the code MAKEYOURSELF for 20% off your order. But act quick, it ends today April 15, 2016! Get shopping!

What are your thoughts on MAKE Beauty? Have you browsed their website to see if there's anything you like?

#Swatch / OPI Pussy Galore

OPI Pussy Galore

No better way to start off a week than with a nail polish swatch. As this month's theme is pastels, I'll be sharing a variety of colors, but all in the lighter shade range. Today's post is of a wishlist item I recently got to cross off, OPI Pussy Galore. This is from the 2013 Bond Girls Collection. I'm a big fan of James Bond, so I really wanted it for the collection factor more so than the color.

As you can see, Pussy Galore is a matte textured light pink with darker pink glitter thrown in. I used two coats for my swatch and it still wound up a tad sheer, so if you want a more opaque look, go for three coats. Also, I found this texture dried reasonably quick, as do most OPI textures. However, this didn't last at all. I took these photos the next day and after minimal office work, my tips were already worn done a bit.

OPI Pussy Galore

A close-up shot of the nail. You can see a bit of the darker flecks in there. But once you see below...

OPI Pussy Galore

It's beautiful! I do love the brush too.

As much as I wanted this polish, I'm pretty disappointed. Nothing to do with the polish itself, but I'm not the right skin tone to really pull this off. I don't think it suits me and even the hubs made a comment. I know its bad when he tells me in a gentle way that I'm not the right shade.

What are your thoughts? Do you have any of the OPI Bond Girls collection?

#SampleSunday / Omcali (Earthbody) Sacred Skincare Dream Body Oil


Omcali (Earthbody) Sacred Skincare Dream Body Oil

Happy Sunday to everyone! It's been dreary here this weekend, which means we've been wanting to do nothing but sleep. Really this gives us time to work on things around the house, cosplay stuff, the blog, etc. Today's Sample Sunday has been a long time coming. So much so the brand has even changed their name! This is the (Earthbody) Omcali Sacred Skincare Dream Body Oil. I got this in my November '14 Petit Vour box (yikes!) and finished it off in January '15 (doubles yikes!). Good thing I took notes!

So what is the Dream Body Oil? This oil is contains three major ingredients that assist in relaxation. Mugwort, which is used for pain and to reduce insomnia and nervous tension. Valerian, a relaxant that can reduce the amount of time it takes to fall asleep and minimize awakenings in the middle of the night. Passionflower, which can give a sedating effect. Just note that all of those claims are not backed by the FDA, so take that for what you want.

Below are the ingredients (as listed on CosDNA):
Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Oil*, Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Seed Oil*, Artemesia Vulgaris (Mugwort) Flower*, Passiflora Incarnata (Passion) Flower*, Valeriana (Valerian) Officinalis*, Santum Album (Sandalwood) Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Boswellia Carteri (Frankincense) Oil, Anthemis Nobilis (Roman Chamomile) Oil* Claimed as Organic by brand
Another note, I listed these as they are listed on the brand's website and not the label for the bottle I have. The label for the bottle I have seems to also contain Rosewood oil, so I'm not sure if it still does, or it has been reformulated. As you can see from the ingredients, this is a highly moisturizing oil.

So how did this do? I used this morning and night and really, this did wonders for my skin. Not including its claims, this oil just happens to be amazingly moisturizing and I would definitely recommend it on that alone to anyone with really dry, flaky skin.

But what about the other claims? Honestly, I didn't read any of the other claims before I started using this product. I simply noticed that I overall felt great while using it. I tend to be a very anxious person and I did notice that I wasn't while using this oil. In hindsight, this definitely lived up to its claims, but while using it I didn't even think about how it was working wonders.

Sample Sunday Rating:
10/10

If you're interested in the Omcali Sacred Skincare Dream Body Oil, you can find it on Omcali's website for $12 for 1oz and $23 for 4oz. I will definitely go out and repurchase once I finish the oils I currently have.

#Unboxing / April 2016 Julep Maven Box

April 2016 Julep Maven Box

The Julep Maven April '16 Be Bright Collection is here! I'll admit, I was originally going to skip on all polishes this month, but I thought I'd give it a shot. Honestly, it wasn't even the polishes that made me go through with getting the box this month. Do you think you know what that may be? Let's take a look at the products in the box and then find out!

April 2016 Julep Maven Box kayla brigette brynn

Above are the polishes I picked out. From left to right there's Kayla, an iris blurple shimmer, Brigette, a white creme and Brynn, a sheer, vivid orange-red. I've included swatches of each and with Brynn included swatches with and without the white basecoat. Each swatch is two coats and for Brynn, I used two coats of Brigette and then two coats on top.

I'll be honest, I was planning on skipping the sheer polishes. It reminded me of the OPI sheer tints and those were something that seemed like a waste. I don't want a wash of color, let alone eventually need a total of four coats of polish. For someone like me, I like to take my time, but I also want to be done quickly. So still not sure how I feel, but I do know one thing. I love the color I chose. Not just the name, but I actually do like the color. It's the closest I can get to red without feeling overdone.

April 2016 Julep Maven Box Detoxifying Cleansing Stick

And now onto the product that made me want to get a box this month, the Detoxifying Cleansing Stick. This is essentially a cleansing balm in a stick form. The description also says that it exfoliates via fruit enzymes. So I think this may be best as an every other day cleanser, however I'll be glad to test and review for you all. Additionally, because what it's intended to do, I'm thinking this may be best as a second cleanser, however I can test it's makeup removal ability.

What about the bag? Well, that was just an add-on because I love neon purple. It's actually a very nice bag! There are lots of little pockets on the inside that can be used to hold products. I didn't need a new bag, but the color was calling me...

If you're looking to do some shopping over at Julep, use the code APRCOLOR for a free nail polish with your purchase of $10+. Only $10! I might be using this code myself! The code is good until May 31, 2016 and can be used twice per customer.

Also, if you're looking to become a Maven subscriber, feel free to use my referral link.* It's not necessary, but you'd do me a solid. But then I'd owe you a solid. So it's up to you!

What are your thoughts on the April 2016 Collection or the choices for the April box? Let me know in the comments!

#Empties / March 2016

*Affiliate Link / †PR Sample


Hope March treated you all great! I finished a ton of skincare this month, but I had quite a few things go bad on me. Partly my own fault as I kept shoving them to the wayside, but it is what it is. Anyways let's jump into the March Empties!


Missha Speedy Solution Firming Eye Patch // This was an OK eye mask. I didn't notice any changes, but it felt nice. I have one more to use, but based on my one-time use of this, I don't think I'd go out of my way to purchase this again. My search for the perfect eye mask continues.

H&M Dead Sea Mineral Mask // I wish H&M made these masks still. This one was nice and definitely comparable to the Freeman masks, but with better packaging. I liked this one, but it wasn't my favorite of all the ones I had. Cruelty-free status unknown.

Leaders Daily Wonders "What Happened Last Night" Radiance Revitalizing Mask* // Good mask, but it would be one I'd recommend you use in the AM as opposed to at night. This mask does a great job at making your skin look alive and amazing. I would definitely repurchase. I believe I found mine at Ulta... I think.


Bioderma Sensibio H2O Make-Up Removing Micelle Solution // I bought this big bottle when it was first available through Beautylish. I was super excited about it. So is Bioderma worth the hype? I think it is. I've had this for months (and months) and just barely used it up. It was super gentle on the eyes, didn't leave a greasy film and did a great job at removing eye makeup, but also body paint. I've used this to remove Gamora cosplay makeup and it worked wonders for removing the Ben Nye cream foundations. I have a few cleansing waters to go through right now, but once I'm almost out of those, I'm switching right back to this.

NUDE Skincare Perfect Cleanse Nourishing Cleansing Oil // I've reviewed this in the past, well, the previous version of the product. I still feel relatively the same, but I don't think its the best cleansing oil out there. There are definitely others I love more than this.

Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser* // This has been seen in a favorites in the past and in an empties. So I held true to my word and purchased a back up. I really do like it. Definitely one of my favorites cleansers. (Seems like a good topic for a post too...) Cruelty-free.

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil // I received this in my January '16 Allure Beauty Box and I was beyond excited to try this out. I have to say, I'm impressed. Is it my new all-time favorite oil cleanser? I think it might tie with the Julep Bare Face Oil.. I might need to compare in the future...

Body Prescriptions Make Up Removing Wipes // So I only have one of these to show, but I did use a few others. I bought a bag of these single packaged wipes at Marshalls and I can't even begin to tell you how amazing they work. I ended up going to an entirely different Marshalls to get another bag. These single packaged wipes are great for travel, so I'm pumped. So if you find these, grab some!

Dr. Jart+ Dermaclear Micro Water // After the Bioderma ran out, I decided to open up this little guy and see if it worked just as good. This however stung my eyes, so stick to using this on your face. I also didn't think it removed mascara as well as the Bioderma.


InstaNatural Youth Express Eye Serum† // I reviewed this back in February '15 and my thoughts still hold true. I didn't use it much after though, but that was because I had other products to try and this just kept getting pushed back further and further in my cabinet. It's only here because it expired. Would I go out and purchase on my own? Yes, but only if I was looking to help reduce dark circles. I'm not prone to dark circles, but it happens every now and then. Cruelty-free.

Skin Food Parsley & Mandarin Spot Gel // So in the search for a new spot gel, I found this and boy was I impressed. Too bad I can't find it on RoseRoseShop anymore! It smells a bit funky, but honestly you don't notice it after its on. I felt this did a great job at toning down bumps and texture, but not so much for actual pimples themselves. You know, the "big ones." So if texture is more your issue, then this is your jam. Cruelty-free status unknown; sells in China.

Burt's Bees Herbal Blemish Stick* // Tried and true. You know I love this stuff. I swear I don't break out a ton, but I use it a couple of times a day if that time-of-the-month leaves me with an unwelcome present. I do tend to go overboard, but it really does help diminish any spots quickly. Cruelty-free.

Blissoma Peace Evening Calming Facial Creme // This one is a big, fat nope. I tried this product on multiple occasions and it not only dried me out each time, but also made me break out. Something about this didn't like me. I decided to give it one last shot before it expired and it was still a flat out N-O. Cruelty-free.

Be Fine Eye Brightening Treatment // Another nope. Not that it did anything wrong, but it also didn't do anything at all. Hydrating, but not the kind of eye cream I need. Plus, the packaging was horrible and didn't pump anything out. I had to dig out product using a spatula or Q-tip. Cruelty-free.

Nature Republic Argan 20 Essential Toner // I used to adore this toner and while I still like it, I think it has taken a back seat as my third or fourth favorite toner. I'll buy it if I'm waiting for my other toners to come in, but won't be hauling this in the masses anymore. I am glad that I can get it easily thanks to the Nature Republic store nearby. Cruelty-free status unknown; sells in China.

InstaNatural Youth Express Eye Gel† // Again, another product reviewed in February '15. And again, only here because it is expired. I wouldn't go out and purchase this as my under eye area is just too sensitive for this. I would barely use any and it would still be too much; too tight and too drying. I think that the tightness is the firming action. While that might be good for those who have bags, for me, it was downright painful. I was making sure I was using the slightest bit, but still. Cruelty-free.

I'll be reviewing the Missha All Around Safe Block SPF 50+/PA+++ in an upcoming Sample Sunday post. I've done past reviews Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Collagen Booster, Tarte Pure Maracuja Oil, Jurlique Balancing Day Care Cream. Thoughts still hold true, so read those reviews!


Tisserand Rose Blend 24Hr Protection Deodorant // I found this product at Marshalls while on a hunt for natural deodorant. I'm in love as it not only kept me smelling fine. Didn't keep my too dry, but it also didn't leaving me sweating instantly. I found a few more at Marshalls and bought them all for backups. Cruelty-free.

hello. Supermint Fluoride Toothpaste // I like that hello. changed their packaging. The previous packaging made getting out that last bit way too difficult. Otherwise, good toothpaste. Cruelty-free.

Beauty Protector Protect & Oil† // I did a review on Beauty Protector products back in June '15 and and Sample Sunday back in February '15 I finally got a change to finish this bottle of oil! I love this oil and previously reviewed it too. With how long it lasted, I would definitely repurchase.

Portland Apothecary Sea Soap // The last time I bought I tattoo balm, I hauled a soap as well. This was an amazing soap and I highly suggest looking into them. Super hydrating and didn't leave me dry after getting out of the shower. Cruelty-free.


Julep Mighty Nail & Cuticle Serum // Ah! So sad this is gone. I did love this cuticle serum. I didn't use it too often, hence why its been close to a couple of years to use this up. Would I repurchase? I don't know. I think I need to use some other cuticle serums/cream before I can really say. I need to know what to compare it to. Cruelty-free.

Lady Soma Skin & Nail Treatment† // I reviewed this back in April '15. I liked it then and I'm sad to see it go. I would say this is a great, hydrating cream. I don't know how well it hardened my nails, but it was good for my hands. It can also be used on stretch marks, but I never tested it out for that. I suppose if I buy a tub, I should test it for that... Cruelty-free.

SpaLife Peppermint & Tea Smoothing Foot Treatment // Relaxing foot mask, but the effects only lasted that night. However, I didn't notice much of the peeling that it stated would happen. A bit bummed at that.

Dr. Scholl's For Her Cracked Skin Repair Cream // This was a standard foot cream that I had sitting in my office desk in case my feet were dry while I was at work. It took forever to use this up since it didn't get too much use. I think this is one of those creams you need to slather on at night and then sleep with socks on. It was just too greasy for walking around in at work. I felt my feet would slide around in my shoes/heels/sandals or whatever I was wearing that day.


YSL Touche Eclat Radiance Awakening Foundation in Almond (B30)* // Ok, so I might need to go out and buy this. This was not only a perfect match for my skin tone, but it looked like skin. It's amazing! Cruelty-free, except where required by law.

Bath & Body Works Forever Red Eau de Parfum // Got this in an old Influenster box, and while I don't think it was my kind of scent, it was nice enough for me to finish off. I wouldn't go out of my way to buy it though. Cruelty-free, except where required by law.

Pacifica Alight Multi-Mineral BB Cream* // I absolutely love this, but you'd know that if you've been a long time reader (see this; I really need to get back to doing these). I used it as my base and felt it did a nice job of just evening out the skin, but also added a wonderful glow. Those that are super pale won't get much use out of this. Definitely best for light-medium to darker skin tones. I got this sample size in an ipsy bag a (long) while back and I figured I'd use up this tiny size before tackling the full size I have. Cruelty-free.

And that's it! Sorry so late on the empties! I've got some awesome stuff to show you and I have some great ideas for the blog. Stay tuned! In the meantime, what did you see in this post that you'd like to see an in-depth review of? Any comparison/dupe ideas?

As always share your thoughts and I'll see you tomorrow!

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