Mascara Monday: e.l.f. Studio Mascara Primer

It’s e.l.f.! I haven’t reviewed anything from my favorite brand in quite some time and so I figured it was time to hop to it. Plus, I’ve been getting a lot of questions about their mascara primer. Their $3 mascara primer. Their $3 mascara primer that works as well as the higher-priced ones. Yep. And this is why e.l.f. rules.

Price: $3 at EyesLipsFace.com and Target stores
Packaging (brush wand): 3 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: “Lengthen and volumize eyelashes instantly with this Mascara Primer. Revitalize lashes with Pro-Vitamin B5, Hydrolyzed Wheat and Soy Protein-enriched formula. An excellent conditioning base for mascara. Coat each lash with this nourishing primer for lashes that appear naturally thicker, longer and stronger!” (source)

The Truth: Always wanted a mascara primer and didn’t want to drop pennies on one worth more than $10? This one is sooooo worth your $3.

What I Loved About It: This baby really helps thicken lashes quickly.

What I Didn’t Like: The wand doesn’t suck but getting into those inner corners sucks just a bit.

Overall: Primers, primers, primers….do ya need ‘em? I guess it’s a personal thing. As a mascara junkie, I always like to keep a good primer on hand. And considering e.l.f.’s is so affordable and does a REALLY good job, I’d go with this one. It’s hard to review primers because on one hand I feel like they are all so similar. Except for the wands…


The wand for this one is just okay. Getting the corner lashes is tricky but if you accidentally get some primer on your lower lashline, it’s no biggie. You can simply wipe it off and keep on truckin’. That’s the best thing about primers…they do REALLY good at “prepping” the lashes for the mascara. This primer lengthened my lashes and bulked them up a bit and by the time I came through with the mascara, the lashes were already voluminous.

Another great thing about primers is that they make it so that you don’t need to wear more than one coat of mascara. While I normally feel the need to wear 2-3 coats of mascara, this primer gave me the look I was looking for with only 1 coat of mascara. Score! And while 2-3 coats of mascara would normally leave my lashes brittle – the primer kept them softer. Not that I NEED soft lashes but it was a nice little perk.

Do you need a primer? Not really. Especially if you’re okay with how your mascara performs. But if you’d like to push it to the limit to see if the mascara can be enhanced, this $3 primer is worth a try.

 

 

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 1 coat of primer

 

Lashes with 1 coat primer, 2 coats of mascara

Lashes with 1 coat primer, 2 coats of mascara

 

Lashes to the left are just 2 coats of mascara. Lashes to the right have primer and 2 coats of mascara.

 

 

Do I recommend it?: Sure. But only if you want to try something new.

Are you a fan of primers or do you find them a bit pointless?

Pretty Polishes: Sally Hansen Smooth + Perfect polishes

Lately I’ve been letting my nails breathe a bit. It’s a necessity for gals like me who polish her nails at least 5-7 times a week. My poor nails take a beating. Not as bad as they were when I was wearing acrylic and gel nails (never again, yo) but I believe in going nail polish free often so that my nails can continue to be strong.

Of course that period of time really only lasts like 3 days. Ha! I can’t help! I love nail polish. Usually when I come off of a nail polish detox, I like start off with softer shades. You know…instead of jumping into the crazy bright neons and glitters. Sally Hansen’s Smooth and Perfect Color Care polishes are perfect for this…

 

Here’s what Sally Hansen says…

“These polishes are designed to hide ridges and imperfections. They have a uniquely breathable formula promotes stronger, healthier looking nails with a patented technology that allows for up to 20% more oxygen to reach the nail. Ridges and imperfections are virtually erased and nails are left looking smooth, shiny and porcelain perfect.”

Niiiiice. These shades are all sheer, dainty and perfect for when you want to give your nails a break from all of the hardcore colors and finishes.

 

Sea is a light pistachio that I didn’t think I’d like but I really do. Aside from being very work-appropriate, this color will also look beautiful with some nail art on top.

 

Sorbet is so creamy and wonderful! Please excuse the bubbling on the pointer finger. This faint peach is so refreshing. Plus it reminds me of my paternal Grandma for some reason. :)

Dune appears to be a beige with just a touch of shimmer in it. The other polishes were creamy but I noticed a few lines of an opal finish in this one.

I used 3 coats for each of these and the best thing about ‘em is they aren’t streaky! It’s almost impossible to find polishes this faint that aren’t streaky. Sally Hansen has 5 more polishes similar to these and you can snag ‘em at drugstores nationwide for about $5.49. Oh! And you can also get them online at Drugstore.com.

Are you a fan of fairer shades or would you rather go bold or go home?

Wet ‘n Wild’s Comfort Zone palette – brace yourself for this one…

Oh my. This palette took my breath away. I didn’t expect it to be so gorgeous. A quick glance of it and it looks pretty average, right?

I mean…you’ve got one side that will give you a nice daytime look and then you’ve got another that will give you an after 5-eye. But there’s really nothing special about it at first glance. Never, darlings…NEVER judge an eyeshadow palette at first glance. After some swatches, I have discovered that this palette is a diamond. It’s sooooo pretty!

The shadows on the left are all work-safe and un-intimidating.

…and the shadows to the right are rich and gorgeous.

And like all Wet ‘n Wild palettes, the back packaging gives you an idea of where to place each shadow. Which is definitely helpful for makeup newbies.

I’m finding that swatching shadows on my arms and displaying them WITHOUT cropping is so much better for viewing and for getting an idea of how the shades look…

Oh. And that blue brown shade?

Stunning! These shadows were silky, creamy and just a dream to work with. Wet ‘n Wild makes it so hard to justify spending more than a few bucks on some eyeshadow. Their quality of these palettes are just…wow. Unbelievable. And these palettes are only $4.99.

I love Wet ‘n Wild so much. I can’t even stand it.

 

The LookBag’s Goodies: March 2012

Soooo, I got my second LookBag and I wanted to share with y’all some of the goodies this go ’round. I did a complete review of how The LookBag works a few weeks ago. For some reason, I didn’t get a little flyer giving me information of what each product is this time. The good news is, every brand that is thrown into The LookBag is also listed on the LookStore website. AND, you can purchase directly from the website too. Pretty cool, uh?

Let’s see what we got this month…

First up is a pair of Shadow Shields.

These are pretty good at catching the fall-out from eye shadow looks. I wouldn’t get much use out of these because I don’t do a ton of eye shadow looks but these are pretty nifty for makeup artists and those who do a ton of looks. The sample should give you an idea if you’d like to purchase more of these. A box of 30 on The LookBag site will run you $7.99 (normally $9.99). Not too steep.

Then there’s Damone Robert’s Brow Highlighter in Bling Bling.

Considering Damone handpicks a lot of these goodies, I was wondering when they were going to throw one of his products in. I was most excited to try this. This is a product that I’d actually use regularly and would consider purchasing if I liked it enough. Sample size is large enough and I’ll probably get a few months of regular use out of this one. It goes for $20 but member’s price is $16.00. That’s a lot of money for a brow highlighter but it’s the norm. And they last forever. Anastasia Beverly Hill’s brow highlighters are around the same price, if not more expensive. Those who know the value in quality brow highlighters don’t mind shelling out the money.

The Cailyn Gel Eyeliner set was probably the best value in this month’s subscription.

You get a nice amount of gel liner and a dual-pot of loose silver glitter and a mineral shadow. Per the instructions, you can mix the gel liner with the glitter and shadow to create different looks. Nice! Aaaand, the top of the gel liner has a built in brush. Would I use this? YES! I am a gel liner fanatic and I never need a reason to need glitter. Member’s price for this is $16.80 but it regularly retails for $21. So yes. This is definitely a deal.

Indie Lee’s Squalane Facial Oil came next…

Packaging gets an A+ for me because even if I don’t end up liking the product, I can reuse that bottle. Product-wise, this is an anti-aging oil that I probably won’t use because I don’t use anti-aging products. The sample size is enough to give you a feel for if you’d like it or not. I’ve never heard of this brand but the beauty blogger in me can appreciate coming across brands I’ve never heard of it. Member’s price for this is $21.60 while is regularly retails for $24. I can’t say if this is a good value or not because I dont know how large the full-sized bottle would be.

SHEATERRA ORGANICS Rose Hips Black Soap

I have to give it to the brands of The LookBag. Most of the skincare products come in such reallllly nice packagings. Lovin’ this one. And considering this is a preservative-free product, the chances of my using it and purchasing it if I liked it are high. And I LOVE black soap. I’m using a cleanser similar to this so I will definitely be giving this one a whirl. Member’s price is $14.40 from the regularly priced $18.00. Again – I wish the site listed the ounces the full-sized bottle comes in.

Aaanad, I saved the best for last. This Franchè lipgloss in Ice Crystal is amazing!

Inglot has a gloss that is similar to this and oh man….it blows me away. Sample size gave me enough to experiment with putting this gloss over different lipsticks to change their colors and dimensions. I had so much fun using this! However, the price is a little too steep for me in that I probably won’t be purchasing the full-sized because the member’s price is a whopping $28.80. Yeah, that’s a deal considering the regular price is $38 but sheesh….c’mon-that’s A LOT of money for a lipgloss. So yeah. This sample was just a big tease.

Overall: This month’s The LookBag was nice. I loved the inclusion of cosmetic products and I loved that most of the skincare products were paraben-free. Two months in and The LookBag is still impressing me. If you’re still not sure if beauty subscriptions are for you, give The LookBag at chance. If all else fails, you can cancel with no penalty and at the very lease, you’ll end up with SOMETHING that you can use from day-to-day.

Like that brow highlighter. Hollersssss!!!

Get a subscription here.

My current facial cleanser. What are you washing your face with these days?

I’ve found a new face cleanser! This is a big deal, y’all. Despite being a beauty blogger, I am far from a product junkie. I stick with what works and while I may review a ton of skincare products, I usually stick with the same ones until they run out. What I review and don’t use, I often donate and pass over to those who I know who I know will use them. I just hate being wasteful, ya know?

A few weeks ago I was roaming through Chamberlin’s Natural Foods store here in Orlando and found myself venturing in the skincare lanes. I’m so ridic. I can MAKE my own skincare products but still feel the need to “buy” some. I’m no Mama Clumps. I don’t have the patience to make my own stuffs. And soooo I buy. This go ’round, I picked up a cleanser from a brand that I’ve never heard of.

Dr. Woods, uh? Is this Dr. Bronner’s cousin? Ha! I vigorously scanned the ingredients list and LOVED that there wasn’t any artificial fragrances in it. Too many times brands say a product is natural but then dump a ton of artificial fragrances in it. Which always annoys me.

This cleanser is so wonderful, y’all. So wonderful. I’ve found a keeper and don’t see myself venturing away from this one any time soon.

Pro’s

-Contains tea tree oil. My favorite all-natural pimple bustin’ agent.
-Includes peppermint oil and that makes the skin feel rejuvenated.
-A little goes a long way.
-Has a mint-y/tea tree oil smell to it. Which I really like but I can see how it may turn off others.
-Nice clear consistency. I prefer clear cleansers over creamy ones. Even though they may not be the best for my dry skin, I feel like they do a better job at drying out those pimples.
-Minimal ingredients!

Con’s

-Can dry the skin out. You have to apply moisturizer quickly!
-Pretty pricey in stores. I paid almost $12 for it but saw that you can get it online for as low as $4.69!

So yeah, I love everything about this cleanser. And I love that I can get it online for almost HALF of what I paid for it. Between this cleanser, my Weleda Almond moisturizer and Boscia masks, I have a nice line-up of preservative-free facial care products.

I love featuring ALL products here on Clumps but for every day use? I stick to all-natural, baby. With my acne flare-up’s, gentler is better, ya know?

What cleanser are your currently using these days?

Amor de Lacquer: China Glaze Capital Colours Hunger Games collection (just a few)

Confession time: I’ve never watched any Harry Potter movies. Or Lord of the Rings. Or Pirates of the Caribbean. But The Hunger Games? Ob-sessed. I’ve read all 3 books (liked the first one the best, though) and can’t WAIT until the movie comes out. China Glaze’s Hunger Game collection features 12 gorgeous shades, all representative of the 12 districts of Panem.

Confused? Um. Read The Hunger Games. Like…now. I’ve only got 5 of the polishes. The HG obsessor that is me wanted to haul ALL 12 shades but only 5 spoke to me. I do want to pick up Agro though. That metallic olive green is gorgeous!

The collection in its entirety….

Fast Track is cool beige with gold micro-flecks that reminds me so much of another China Glaze shade. I just can’t put my finger on it. Anywhoovers, Fast Track is gorg. It’s a work appropriate shade with hella personality.

Mahogany Magic is a rich, yellow-based, brown creme. I used to feel some kind of way about brown polishes with my brown skin but now I am in LOVE with them. This brown reminds me a lot of Nubar’s Milk Chocolate except Mahogany Magic is a wee bit richer. Brown polishes rock so much.

Riveting is a jelly-fied gem and while it looks quite similar to China Glaze’s Orange Marmalade, Riveting is 10x richer and more vibrant. I have already called this polish one of my favorites….ever. Which says a lot. It’s stunning, captivating and just…riveting. Yes, riveting. Katniss would definitely approve.

Smoke & Ashes is a black that has blue micro-flecks. I heard great things about this polish so I just had to snag it. Well…it’s just okay. Outside it looks black. Inside it looks black and only when you look at the nails close-up can you see the blue flecks. I mean, it’s pretty but nothing ah-mazing, ya know?

Luxe & Lush was the polish that I was most looking forward to and it definitely didn’t disappoint. This flakie top coat is perhaps one of the most unique because the flakes are so spread out and in various colors. And unlike other flakies, it actually looks half decent on lighter shades. It looks okay on black too but REALLY pops on lighter shades. I love it over Mahogany Magic. I did one coat on the pointer and middle finger and two coats  on the middle finger and pinky.

 I did one coat of Luxe & Lush over Smoke & Ashes and it’s gorg. In. love.

And then over Fast Track…

Must Haves:
-Riveting. You REALLY need this. Not even kidding.
-Luxe & Lush. Because it’s the most epic flakie topcoat I’ve ever seen.

The formula of these were good. I didn’t have crazy issues with any of them. I used 2 coats for each and was surprised at how opaque they were. Especially Riveting. I just KNEW I’d have to go for 3 coats with that baby but nope…it took only 2. I’ll probably snag another polish or two from this collection. Prim would want me to. I know. I’m so involved with The Hunger Games. I grabbed these for $5.99 each at Sally Beauty Supply and of course e-tailers like TransDesign.com will have these for sale in the coming weeks.

See any you like? How awesome is that Riveting?

 

Amor de Lacquer….the series all about nail polish and nail care! Send your requests,
suggestions and ideas to Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

Mascara Monday: Urban Decay Lush Lash mascara

Huge news, y’all! This mascara review makes the 150th mascara review added to the Clumps of Mascara Mascara Bin. It’s hard to believe that I’ve tested over 150 mascaras AND wrote reviews for them. Is there a Guinness World Records section for something like this? Seriously. In honor of the 150th mascara review, I’ll be giving away UD’s Lush Lash. Aaaaand, it’s an International-friendly giveaway! Details after review!

Price: $20 at Sephora stores and Sephora.com
Packaging (brush wand): 4 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: “A thickening and lengthening mascara formulated to help lashes actually grow longer. ” (source)

The Truth: The wand is a dream!

What I Loved About It: This mascara lengthens nicely.

What I Didn’t Like: You probably won’t get the complete benefits of this mascara unless you use it in conjunction with Urban Decay’s Lush Lash System (Growth Accelerating Serum and Conditioning Mask). And that goes for $42.

Overall: Here’s the dealio, because I can’t spend weeks reviewing a mascara, I won’t be able to say much about this mascara’s ability to make the lashes healthier over time. What I will do is rap on the awesomeness that is the wand, the formula and whether or not the mascara’s overall performance is up to par.

Let’s take a look see at the wand.


Nice, uh? This is the perfect wand for maneuvering through wonky lashes. The bristles are smaller than I’d like but at least they are sturdy.

Formula-wise, I think this one’s formula is nice. It plops itself on the wand easily and distributing it on the lashes is easy. It flaked a bit on me throughout the days I wore it but this can be alleviated but applying a coat of your favorite mascara primer before applying the mascara.

This baby promises to thicken and lengthen and I think it does a darn good job. Like I think it does better lengthening than thickening, I love that I can apply 2-3 coats without it clumping up on me. I didn’t get insanely longer lashes with Lush Lash, but I find it be the perfect everyday mascara. Aaaand, if I weren’t too busy reviewing so many other mascaras, I would definitely use this for days and weeks at a time to see if helped lead me to healthier lashes. It’s been such a long time since I’ve reviewed an Urban Decay mascara and it’s a plum shame because Urban Decay is one of my favorite brands.

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 3 coats



Do I recommend it?: Sure do. Especially if you need a good separating mascara.

Have you tried this mascara yet? What do you think?

 


Pretty Polishes: Jesse’s Girl polishes rock!

You know what sucks? Falling in love with a brand that you can’t get in your city. I know, there really are more important things to be worried about in the world. I should feel petty for caring about something so little. It’s the beauty blogger in me. Really, it is.

Take these polishes from Jesse’s Girl….

Gorgeous, right? But I can’t even find them here in Florida. Back when I lived in Los Angeles, I never gave the brand a second glance but now that I am thousands of miles away, of course I want to hoard ALL of their products. Especially their polishes.

Check out Julie G…

Now y’all know I have never ever been a fan of pink polishes (or pink the color…yucky) but this baby is awesoooome! She isn’t as “neon” as a hot pink but isn’t super coral either. She’s like a Pepto Bismol pink with a ton of coral thrown in. I loooooove it!

I love Glee too!

 Glee was hard to capture so I ended taking two pictures with two different cameras. The one above shows its truest color. In natural lighting, this foil-y polish with turquoise shimmer leans more on the blue side.


What’s not to love about a polish that reminds me of mermaids?

So yeah. I am loving these two Jesse’s Girl polishes. Must.have.more. The formula for both were excellent. The dry time was surprisingly fast and I can always appreciate a polish that dries with the quickness. You can grab Jesse’s Girl polishes at Rite Aid and online for $2.99.

Have you tried anything from Jesse’s Girl?