Beauty & Fashion

theBalm theBalmJour Creamy Lip Stain “Namaste” | Review

Hello friends!

I am of the opinion that theBalm is a pretty underrated brand in the beauty sphere! They have their popular products like the Mary-Loumanizer or their eyeshadow palettes, but everything else doesn’t seem to get quite the same hype. Today I’m sharing my review on one of their lip products; their creamy lip stain.

Color: Namaste is a deep, warm pink. It looks slightly more neutral upon application, but wears into a fuchsia throughout the day.

Finish: As the name suggests, this lip stain’s finish is definitely a cream, similar to that of a bullet lipstick but with less opacity. It’s not quite shiny like many glosses, but does hold a similar vibe to one.

Packaging: theBalm is definitely known for their cute, vintage looking packaging featuring various people, and this isn’t an exception. The tube is a matte grey plastic, with a cute sticker in it featuring a red head saying the shade name. Each shade has a different character on it, which is a nice touch.

Applicator: The applicator is your standard doefoot. I didn’t feel like the shape helped or hindered in applying this product.

Application: I found getting an even application with this color to be a bit tricky, as it’s not fully opaque. I had to be careful to not swipe back and forth too much, or I would risk pulling up the product I’d already put on my lips and making it look patchy. One layer was the best bet for getting an even application, however I still wasn’t completely happy with the evenness of it.

I also had a bit of difficulty with getting the edges of my lips, as product would want to bunch up and leave a thick line – with many other products it’s easy to fix, but with this one I had to carefully dab it away or risk a more patchy appearance. I found it easiest to press and rub my lips together to disperse excess product.

Continue reading “theBalm theBalmJour Creamy Lip Stain “Namaste” | Review”

Beauty & Fashion

CoverFX Custom Enhancer Drops “Moonlight” | Review

Hello friends!

CoverFX came on my radar when they released their custom cover drops, an ultra concentrated foundation.  From there, they developed other similar items in droppers, including these gorgeous highlighting drops!

Color:  Moonlight looks like a beautiful pale rose gold color in the bottle.  On the face, it becomes a silver color with just the slightest pink hint. Ulta’s website describes this as a “shimmering beige”, which sounds pretty accurate to me.

One huge caveat to this product is that it is infused with glitter.  I think this could be a huge turnoff to some people, because there’s a lot of people who do not want glitter on their face – just their eyes.  The first time I used it, I was shocked to find that there was glitter everywhere, and I assumed that it was because my eyeshadow also had glitter in it and it was just fallout.  After taking a really close look at this, however, I realized that there is definitely glitter being used to add the shine.

Continue reading “CoverFX Custom Enhancer Drops “Moonlight” | Review”

Beauty & Fashion

MAC Electric Wonder Collection Matte Lipstick “Life in Sepia” | Review

Hello friends!

Last year, MAC came out with arguably the most beautiful collection known to exist, a.k.a the Electric Wonder. With gorgeous packaging and popular, wearable shades this was sure to draw the eyes of anyone interested in traditionally feminine, “instagramable” packaging. I, of course, was no exception!

Color: Life in Sepia is a cool, mid-toned brown. On the lips, it definitely has a grey undertone – this is the kind of color that most people either love or hate. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s a vampy color, but it is definitely darker than a traditional nude.

Finish: As the name suggests, this is a matte finish. Even when it goes on there is very little shine, which quickly fades into a flat appearance.

Packaging: Unsurprisingly, the packaging of this lipstick is its selling point. It is a gorgeous pink marble, with veins of metallic gold scattered throughout. The inner portion of the tube is a matte gold, along with the small bit that peeks out and the MAC printed on it. The actual shape of the tube is a traditional MAC bullet lipstick.

Applicator: The shape of the actual lipstick is basic – just like any other lipstick shape with a traditional tear drop shape and a point.

Application: Applying this lipstick was as easy as any other bullet lipstick. Even after wearing it down a bit, I didn’t have problems with getting straight lines. One thing I will point out is that this particular shade is one that shows my natural lip colors on the edges if I don’t cover them completely. That just meant I had to be a little extra careful to make sure I got all the edges otherwise you could see pink, which looked a bit strange.

One other thing that is incredibly important to point out is the strong vanilla scent that MAC lipsticks have. This one is no exception – I could smell it upon application and for about 5 minutes after.

Continue reading “MAC Electric Wonder Collection Matte Lipstick “Life in Sepia” | Review”

Beauty & Fashion

Ofra Cosmetics x Madison Miller Lip Gloss “Smiley For Ryleigh” | Review

Hello friends!

I will forever talk about how much I adore Ipsy, and this is part of the reason why! I was able to get this lip gloss as part of my bag – I love being able to try new collections from brands I enjoy!

Color: This is a mostly transparent peach gloss with tons of glitter. There is a hint of peach color in the base, but for the most part it’s clear with shimmer.

Finish: The finish of this is shiny, but more so I’d say this is a glitter finish gloss due to the lack of base pigment.

Packaging: The packaging of this gloss is a beautiful matte white cap with a plain acrylic tube and Ofra written on the cap. The product information is white, printed on the tube, and appears to have Madison Miller’s signature on it.

Applicator: The applicator functions like a basic doefoot, however it does have an interesting curve to it and a bit of a “chair” shape. I’m not sure if that really improves the application, but it is kind of fun.

Application: Application of this gloss is pretty easy. I dipped into the tube twice; once for each lip. Since the base is mostly clear I wasn’t too worried about going outside of the lip lines. One thing I do want to caution is that it can look streaky and clumpy upon initial application until you “blend” with the doefoot – so I’d be careful about applying without a mirror. You could also rub your lips together to distribute the pigment a bit more, but it was something I had noticed. This is me being nit picky!

There is a very sweet vanilla scent that dissipates after application.

Continue reading “Ofra Cosmetics x Madison Miller Lip Gloss “Smiley For Ryleigh” | Review”

Beauty & Fashion

Smashbox Always On Matte Liquid Lipstick “Babe Alert” | Review

Hello friends!

Aside from primers, one product that really worked for Smashbox was their liquid lipsticks! So many people discussed them when they first came out, and even years later I still hear people talk about these being a favorite formula.

Color: Babe Alert is a corally-pink nude. It’s got a warm undertone, and is mostly pink but feels more wearable than what I’d consider a “true pink”. Sephora and Ulta both describe this as a “nude rose” – I’d say more rose than nude.

Finish: This lipstick dries down to a completely flat matte finish. Even upon initial application the actual appearance of the dry down was pretty quick; there wasn’t any period of shine.

Packaging: The lipstick that I have is a sample size, but the packaging is similar between the full size and sample size. It is a large square acrylic tube with a black cap. The label is printed directly on the tube and doesn’t appear to be a sticker.

Applicator: The applicator on this lip product is a tear drop shape with a hole (also known as a well) in the center that holds extra product. It’s got a bit of a fuzzy texture to it but I didn’t find that there was any problems with that making the edges less crisp.

Application: Applying this lipstick is very easy. The teardrop shape made getting a sharp line simple, and the well holds enough product to cover both lips without having to dip back in.

I did feel like even with applying the normal amount that comes on the applicator, the product felt thick going on. This, in turn, played in to the amount of time that it took for the product to dry & I believe also played into how it looked later on.

Continue reading “Smashbox Always On Matte Liquid Lipstick “Babe Alert” | Review”

Beauty & Fashion

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick “Fire & Ice” | Review

Hello friends!

One thing I love about really popular, classic brands like Revlon is that they’ve been around long enough to establish cult products. One such product, though less popular than another red of theirs, is Fire & Ice!

I was fortunate enough to find this color on clearance, and knew I needed to snatch it up right away!

Color: Fire & Ice is a warm red that leans a bit coral – there is a strong orange-pink undertone to it.

Finish: This lipstick is a cream finish. I’d say it would lean a bit more towards matte than lustrous like a gloss, but it’s not quite satin. Interestingly, it’s also relatively sheer.

Packaging: The packaging looks incredibly classic. The tube is a glossy black, with a clear window on the top of the cap so you can see the lipstick color when looking down at it. When you pull the lid off it’s a shiny gold with Revlon printed on it.

Applicator: This is a standard cut bullet; there’s nothing special or unique about the shape.

Application: I found application on this lipstick to be as easy as any other traditional bullet lipstick. The point is just sharp enough that you can get a crisp line relatively easily, though I imagine that the more you wear it down the harder it will be to get that even line.

One thing that I struggled with was needing to build up opacity on this particular color. I would typically swipe about three times to get the opacity level I wanted. While it would look opaque from normal talking distance, when looking up close you could definitely see the darkness of my lips poking through still.

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Beauty & Fashion

Colourpop Ultra Glossy Lip “Curvii” | Review

Hello friends!

In a wonderful turn of events, I got the iluvsarahii bundle by accident when I had purchased the KathleenLight’s bundle. ColourPop had given me to go-ahead to keep my bundle while they sent me the correct one, which means that I was able to get double the product!

If you’re interested in the other colors within this bundle, my review of 951 is here.

Color: Curvii is a pale peach with flecks of pink glitter.  Depending on how thick of a layer, it can go from a nearly clear gloss with glitter, to a very opaque peach.

Finish: In terms of gloss finishes, this is relatively creamy with glitter flecks throughout.  The thicker the layer, the more creamy it looks and less gloss-like finish it has.

Colourpop Ultra Glossy Lip "Curvii" | Review - A Midwest Belle

Packaging: The packaging of this lip gloss is really pretty, as it is part of the iluvsarahii collab.  It’s the standard acrylic tube with a gold cap and gold accents.

Colourpop Ultra Glossy Lip "Curvii" | Review - A Midwest Belle

Applicator: The applicator for this gloss is a brush tip – it’s definitely not my favorite for this type of formula, as the product is thick and the brush struggles to distribute product evenly.  I also noticed that there tends to be hairs out of place frequently.

Application: I find application of this gloss to be quite tedious.  The brush applicator means that if I wanted to apply this in a thick, opaque layer I am building constantly, but have to be careful to avoid streaks due to the paleness of this shade.  If I want to use a thin layer as a “wash” of color, it still doesn’t apply evenly with the brush and so I have to dip multiple times.

I struggled to get product my lips without missing spots or having clumps of product in certain areas, with no product in others.

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Beauty & Fashion

Physician’s Formula The Healthy Lip Velvet Finish “Berry Healthy” | Review

Hello friends!

I was unbelievably lucky and found a bunch of these Healthy Lips on clearance at Walmart – I couldn’t help but snag some because I’ve heard people rave about them.  Spoiler alert: for good reason, too!

Color: Berry Healthy is a neutral, deep pink that leans slightly cool, but could mostly be considered a neutral pink-berry.  The neutral-ness of the shade tends to make it look less berry than what one would traditionally think – there’s very little purple in it. I personally would consider this a pink nude in my own collection.

Finish: As most liquid lipsticks do, this formula dries down to a matte finish.  The packaging states that this is a velvet finish, but to me there isn’t much shine, and what little there is definitely goes away as the product wears.

Physician’s Formula The Healthy Lip Velvet Finish “Berry Healthy” | Review - A Midwest Belle

Packaging: The packaging on this lipstick is definitely unique to other liquid lipstick tubes! It’s square and acrylic with the silver cap.  This definitely feels weighty and more luxurious than a typical drugstore liquid lipstick.  The only complaint I have is that it’s unnecessarily bulky – there easily could have been less acrylic on the outside of the product and still kept the aesthetic.

Physician’s Formula The Healthy Lip Velvet Finish “Berry Healthy” | Review - A Midwest Belle

Applicator: I adore the teardrop applicator with a well on the inside. The shape lends well to application – it’s easy to get a crisp line with the pointed tip.  The well ensures that you don’t have to dip into the tube a second time as it holds enough product for both lips.

Application: I found application of this to be strange at first, until I got more comfortable with the formula.  It’s not actually fully opaque; it’s semi-opaque, but with this particular shade that actually worked in its favor.  The product is thicker than you would expect – not a mousse, but also not thin like a standard liquid lipstick.

There were some issues with evenness on application, especially on the edges of my lips.  You could definitely tell that some spots were more pigmented than others, however it was incredibly easy to just use my finger and dot off the excess.

Physician’s Formula The Healthy Lip Velvet Finish “Berry Healthy” | Review - A Midwest Belle

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Beauty & Fashion

Colourpop Ultra Satin Lip “951” | Review

Hello friends!

Funny story with this lipstick- I ordered the Kathleen Lights lip bundle, and was accidentally sent the IluvSarahii set instead.  When I told them about it, they said I could keep it, so yay for bonus reviews for all of you!

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Color: 951 is a really beautiful warm medium brown shade.  I’d say it has a little more depth than your average nude, but is still pink enough to be less intimidating for those scared of a traditional brown.

Finish: The Ultra Satin lips have an almost-matte finish that never quite dry down.  It’s like a demi-matte with just the slightest bit of sheen to keep from the traditional flat finish that most liquid lipsticks have.

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Packaging: The tube of this lipstick is just like their standard tubes, but the cap is a beautiful gold instead of their traditional silver.  The printing on it is also gold versus their traditional holographic text, and it says “iluvsarahii X Colourpop” to notate the collaboration.

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Applicator: The applicator on this is standard for Colourpop; a basic doefoot. While mine does fray a bit and doesn’t sit smooth, I had no difficulties at all with getting straight lines.

Application: I found the application of this particular shade to be very easy.  The color is opaque in one swipe and easy to get a smooth, straight line, even on the edges.

It does remain slightly tacky because it never truly dries down, so in the first few minutes after application it feels a bit off until you get used to it.  If I hadn’t been paying specific attention to that detail, I wouldn’t have felt this on my lips at all.

There is no discernible scent with the Colourpop lipsticks; it smells a bit like chemicals, but the scent isn’t offensive and did not linger. I could never smell it once it was on my lips.

This color had a tendency to emphasize the texture of my lips, especially when they were dry, so even upon application within a few minutes you could see each crack and crevice.  This can be helped by either having smoother lips than I do, or exfoliating/using balm the night before use to minimize the clinging!

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Transfer: One thing that I’ve noticed with all Colourpop Ultra Satin lips is that they transfer quite a bit; this one was no exception.  I found that it would come off on my water bottle after just drinking water, and always came off on my food.  I left lipstick everywhere, especially as the first layer wore down.  After it faded off a bit the amount that transferred did lessen, so if you blotted right away you would probably have less issues than I did!

Fading: Despite the fact that the amount of transfer was frustrating, I was surprised that the fading wasn’t too bad.  After eating a larger or more messy meal, there was a definite need for reapplication, otherwise I had a ring of product around the outside of my lips, and my lips looked even stranger due to the line emphasis.  However, just wearing throughout the day with drinking, breakfast and a non-messy lunch means that this lip product would still look good!

One thing I did notice was that the product built up a bit as the day wore on, which meant that I had patches of slightly orange dry spots on my lips.  This is something that I had only noticed when my lips were especially dry, so again if you properly moisturize beforehand I don’t think you’ll have this issue.

Comfort: Unlike a normal matte liquid lipstick, this never dries down completely. Because of that, I could always feel a bit of stick when I pushed my lips together and I felt more aware of it being on my lips.  That said, it remained incredibly comfortable throughout the duration of wear.  It’s not hydrating,  but it’s also not drying at all and is a great formula for those who hate liquid lipsticks for the feeling of them.

Overall: I love the comfort of the ultra satins, but the fading and transfer of them is definitely frustrating. I think part of the problem is that I have yet to try a lighter shade; both Stud and this one are a bit darker, more brown-toned nudes so it’s not a surprise that the appearance and wear would also be similar.

I haven’t quite decided if I’ll keep this yet, but I’m leaning a bit towards yes.  It’s really beautiful, and if you love this formula and can put up with the fading, you absolutely will not be disappointed!

Price Point: If you really love this color but don’t want to purchase the bundle, you can buy the single lipstick here for $7.  However, if you’re looking to buy a few lipsticks and save some money, you can buy the whole kit here!

Have you ever tried the Ultra Satin formula from Colourpop?

Beauty & Fashion

New At Ulta | June 10 – July 14, 2019

Hello friends!

Last month was looking a little weak in terms of new beauty releases, but this month is jam packed with them!  There’s a ton of beautiful new eyeshadow palettes, and some awesome mini sets of products I want to try.  Out of everything on this list, I’ve already picked up one of the mini Mac setting sprays, but I got the watermelon scent.

A lot of the makeup on this list is from Makeup Revolution/Revolution Pro/Revolution Skincare; how many brands can they have?! Additionally, Tarte has a few intriguing products on my list.

New At Ulta | June 10 - July 14, 2019 - A Midwest Belle

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