Maybelline Color Elixir Lip Color Review

After seeing so many rave reviews on the new Maybelline Color Elixir Lip Colors, I knew that I had to give these a try. All of my favorite blogs and beauty YouTubers had nothing but good things to say about these. I purchased one in the color Fuchsia Flourish. I was drawn to this color because I have lipsticks that I thought this would look nice over.

The Color Elixirs are new glosses from Maybelline that have a lot of pigment and high shine. The tube is typical lipgloss packaging, just a little shorter. The applicator is a little larger than a standard doe foot applicator for a gloss, but I really like it. It makes application easier and deposits more product on the lips. Application is very nice. The gloss applies smoothly and goes on relatively opaque for a gloss. It feels very smooth on the lips and isn't gritty or patchy.

Fuchsia Flourish

There is a floral smell to this gloss, and this is the point where everything went wrong for me. The smell isn't bothersome in the tube. A smell doesn't bother me when applied, but it had a very unpleasant taste. I couldn't keep this on my lips. Then, I tried a only a little over a lipstick as I intended to use it and got the same results. I cannot attest to the staying power of this gloss, but it removes quite easily.

I am so disappointed that the Color Elixir Lip Colors did not work for me because it is a very beautiful lip color. Since so many people love them, I won't say that this won't work for you. As with any product, make sure you purchase it from a store that will allow you to return open makeup and keep your receipt. I purchased mine at Target and easily returned it with my receipt.


Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Beauty Gift Set Review

Between a polar vortex and now another Arctic blast, my skin has been in need of some serious help. If you have read previous posts you will know that I have been on the hunt for a hand cream strong enough to deal with my rough patches. Erratic weather and frequent hand washing have not been kind to my skin, so this had me trying the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream set.

This set contains The Original Eight Hour Cream, Eight Hour Cream Intensive Moisturizing Body Treatment, and an Eight Hour Cream Lip Protectant Stick Sunscreen SPF 15. The set I have came with a makeup bag, but the one on the Elizabeth Arden site just has the products.

The Original Eight Hour Cream is a product with multiple uses to protect skin. I have used it to treat rough, cracked skin, but it can also be used to soften cuticles, shape eyebrows, or to add shine to lips or eyelids. The Original Eight Hour Cream is the classic formula and it looks and smells like it is from another era. This is a very thick petroleum based formula with a citronellol  fragrance. Because it is so thick, I would not recommend this for overall application but for rough patches that need extra attention only. A drugstore alternative to this is the Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream. It is not as thick as the Eight Hour Cream, but it is very similar and is fragrance free.

The Eight Hour Cream Intensive Moisturizing Body Treatment is an extra moisturizing body lotion with a slight lemon fragrance. This looks like a body lotion, but it provides extra hydration. The Intensive Moisturizing Body Treatment is exactly what I have been looking for in a hand cream. It has a little extra thickness and extra hydrating properties that make it perform better than others I have used. I have also used this to soothe my dry legs and elbows. This is a body lotion that goes the extra mile.

Intensive Moisturizing Body Treatment and Eight Hour Cream

The Eight Hour Cream Lip Protectant Stick Sunscreen SPF 15 is a very light moisturizing lip balm. It has minimal shine and no color, so it would be appropriate for both men and women. What really impresses me about this lip balm is that it is moisturizing without feeling heavy. I like to use lip balm at night, but usually it turns into a film on my lips by the morning. With this, I wake up with moisturized lips without the gunky film.

I am very impressed with the effectiveness of all of these products. They all do exactly what they say and are very moisturizing and therapeutic. This set has improved my dry, cracked skin, and that's saying something.

Bite Beauty High Pigment Pencils Review and Swatches


Since their products were released in Sephora Bite Beauty has been a brand that has piqued my interest, so I was really excited when I received a set of the High Pigment Pencils as a Christmas gift. When I read on the package that all of Bite's products contain food grade ingredients, I became even more excited to try these out!

Some of the ingredients are organic!

The set I received came in a metal tin with a mirror inside that is very convenient for carrying the pencils in your handbag, or you could use it to store something else. The set comes with four lip pencil lipsticks that are in a retractable pencil format. The bottom of each pencil has a swatch of the color for easy identification. The lids of these pencils don't seem very secure to me. They don't snap closed, so it may be easy to not put the lid back on tightly. I have had these kinds of lids and caps come off of pencil products in my handbag before, and they make a mess. Just know if you carry these in your purse to put them in a makeup bag or a separate compartment rather than having just having it loose.

Madeira, Cranberry, Rhubarb, Quince
The application is wonderful! They glide on easily and are creamy. I really enjoy having the precision of a pencil without the dryness. As the name suggests, the pencils are very pigmented, so you do not have to work to build up the color. They feel very light on the lips and look like they should feel heavier because they are so pigmented.

In direct sunlight Top to Bottom: Madeira, Cranberry, Rhubarb, Quince

Natural light indoors

Madeira is a light pink nude color that is flattering on the lips. I don't always enjoy wearing nudes because they can make my lips disappear. This color is light without making you look sick. I don't have pigmented lips, so this color looks very natural with my skin tone. I do think that this color would work well on someone with pigmented lips wanting to go for a nude lip look because it is so pigmented. 

Cranberry (Limited Edition)
Cranberry is a bold true red color. Although this is limited edition, Cranberry is not out of stock at Sephora. As you can probably guess from previous posts, I love this color!

Rhubarb is described as a plum rose. The last time I wore this, it looked a little brown. This is a great natural color for darker skin tones and for those that dislike nudes.

Quince is described as a rose berry color. It is very vibrant, and I would almost call this a fuchsia. I love this color, and it is quickly becoming my favorite shade to wear! Pinks and berry colors really perk up a light complexion. 

The High Pigment Pencils are very long lasting, and they do not feel drying on your lips like typical long wearing lip products. When I wear these, they do not transfer to my water glass, but they will transfer to a cup of hot tea. If the lip color wears a little it leaves an even stain on your lips, and it won't get patchy. The finish is described by Bite Beauty as a "modern matte look." I would not consider the finish matte, as all of these colors have a bit of depth and life to them. However, the finish is not overly glossy or shiny. Overall, I am very impressed with these pencils and highly recommend them. I cannot wait to try more products from Bite Beauty!

Have you tried anything from this brand? What did you think?


Liebster Award

Hi lovelies! I was nominated for the Liebster Award by Jenna from A Blog Full of Makeup.

The rules:
  • Link the blog that nominated you for the award
  • Choose 11 bloggers to nominate who have less than 200 followers
  • Answer the 11 questions given to you
  • Let the people you have nominated know that you have done so
  • You can't nominate the person that nominated you
  • Create 11 questions for the people you nominate to answer

Here are the questions that I received:
What is your favourite type of post to read and write
I really enjoy reading and writing reviews. It is so interesting to learn why a product worked or didn't work for someone.

What is your favourite thing to do on a weekend?
I love going to new restaurants with my husband. I have discovered a few new favorite places in the Dallas area this month, so I may do a separate food post. Let me know if you like this idea or not.

Do you prefer Horror or Comedy films?
Comedy! I love to laugh, but I can't watch others suffer, even if it's not real.

If you would live anywhere in the world where would it be?
I know this is probably cheesy, but I really love where I live now in the Dallas, TX area. For the first time in my life I really enjoy where I live and it is not taken for granted. There is a surprising amount of cultural diversity here, so sometimes it can feel like being in another country. I love it! It is always nice to fantasize about living in another country, but I don't know where that would be...

What is your favourite drugstore makeup brand?

What is a really good dupe you know of?
Revlon lipstick in Pink Pout is very close to MAC Angel.

If you had to choose would it be foundation or mascara?

What is your favourite TV show?
Downton Abbey 

What is that one song you keep listening to lately?
Whatever music I'm trying to learn.

Do you apply your makeup with a brush, sponge or hands?
All three ways! I use my hands if I don't have much time, but I prefer a bush. I am currently testing out a couple of sponges.

Do you prefer to wear your hair up or down?

That was fun! I only have a few bloggers that I know that fit the under 200 subscribers requirement. Here are the bloggers I nominate:
Karen from KPsays
Sissi from Beauty4Free2U
Tracey from TraceysBeauty
Heather from BlushingBelle
Pilar from BeautyandMoreByPilar
Please go check out their blogs!

Your questions are:
What made you start a blog?
What books are you currently reading, or what was the last book that you read?
What is one makeup brush you cannot live without?
Do you play any musical instruments?
What is your favorite nail polish?
What is your favorite vacation destination?
Do you have a nickname, and what is it?
What is your favorite makeup brand?
What is your favorite thing to cook?
What is your go-to lipstick?
What languages do you speak?


Fragrance Friday -- Viktor&Rolf Flowerbomb


Today's Fragrance Friday is the widely popular Flowerbomb eau de parfum from Viktor&Rolf. This eau de parfum is a sweet oriental fragrance. The notes listed in this fragrance are top notes of bergamot, green tea, and osmanthus, middle notes, middle notes of jasmine, orange flower, freesia, rose, and orchid, and base notes of musk and patchouli.

At first spray, I do smell a little bit of the citrus from the bergamot, but I mostly get the sweet, sugary smell of strawberries, which is more than likely the osmanthus. As it begins to dry down, the floral notes begin to come through the sweetness a bit, especially the freesia and rose. The fruitiness of the orange flower is also prominent. The way fragrances develop is very interesting. Sometimes, I get  the notes of jasmine and orchid, and sometimes I cannot smell it at all. At the final dry down, the strawberry is still there but as a strawberry jam with patchouli. Smells delicious!

Flowerbomb is a long lasting fragrance with heavy sillage. This is strong and lasts all day, so you don't need to apply much at all. Because it has been so cold lately it is not quite so heavy on the projection, but this will broadcast quite loudly in the summer.

What do you think of this fragrance? Have you had a sniff?


Physicians Formula Happy Booster Illuminating Bronzing Veil Review and Swatches


The clear side is the bottom of the container when you take it out of the box.

Claims and directions


Today, I have a review of the Physicians Formula Happy Booster Illuminating Bronzing Veil in Bronzer. Physicians Formula has come out with many beautifully packaged face powder products, and I have been a fan of their mineral powders for years. The Illuminating Bronzing Veil consists of bronze and gold loose powder hearts that comes in a loose powder package without a sifter. The lid screws completely off and contains a mirror, and a puff and a brush sit on top of the loose powder hearts. This product claims to give an allover luminous glow without the mess of a loose powder. I found mine at Target, but it can be purchased at most drugstores.

While the pink puff and pink and red brush are very cute, I find them to be impractical. Most tiny applicators that come with products never seem to perform as I would like, so I rarely use them. The brush is too small to use for bronzer, but I decided to give the puff a try. These loose powder hearts are not meant to be applied with a puff. I couldn't get any powder to lift onto the puff and on my face with this method. To apply, I swirled a medium-sized powder brush in the hearts and swept the bronzer on my face under my cheekbones, along the sides of the nose, and on my temples. The shimmer in the powder adds more of a glow than a sparkle. Illuminating is an appropriate word choice. I like to use bronzer to bronze and contour at the same time, and this worked well for that purpose. You could use this lightly all over to add a hint of warmth.

Bronzer worn with MAC Well Dressed blush

The Physicians Formula Bronzing Veil is just that, a veil. It isn't very pigmented at all, but as you can see in the photograph above, it can be built up. I do notice a little color on my skin after just one sweep, but if your skin is darker than mine you may not. This veil is best for lighter skin tones if you are looking for some bronzing action.

Inside the container, I counted twelve bronze and six gold hearts. Judging by the look of the golden hearts, I was expecting the texture to be a bit chunky, but that wasn't the case. The finish turned out to be a subtle glow rather than a glitter bomb.

Heavy swatch of gold and bronze hearts

This bronzer really works for me, but I have the right skin tone and skin type for this right now. With the shimmer that this bronzer has, it may not work if you have really oily skin. I usually shy away from shimmery bronzers, but the cold winter we have been having has made my skin normalize. More shine is the last thing you want on oily skin, so I may not be able to get away with wearing this in the summer.

The Physicians Formula Happy Booster Illuminating Bronzing Veil would be great for those of you new to bronzer and don't want to over-apply or for those of you with very fair skin that just wants a more subtle bronzer.

Have you tried any of the Physicians Formula bronzers?

Manicure Monday -- OPI Muir Muir on the Wall

Today's manicure features Muir Muir on the Wall from the San Francisco Collection by OPI.
I got the mini set for Christmas that contains 4 mini nail polishes from the collection in the colors First Date at the Golden Gate, Muir Muir on the Wall, In the Cable Car-Pool Lane and Peace & Love & OPI. The San Francisco Collection came out as OPI's Fall and Winter 2013 collection, but some colors can still be found in Ulta store or on OPI's Amazon store.

Muir Muir on the Wall is a smoky plum with burgundy shimmer. I really like how unique this color is. In different light, it looks like a very cool brown. It can look a bit dirty, but I think the color is very chic and appropriate for the winter season.

The first coat applied terribly! It was streaky and patchy and had me very concerned. The first coat looked like a sheer black with burgundy shimmer. The second coat was much better. It evened out and became opaque, and I got the true color that you see in the bottle. Some nail polishes need the second coat, and Muir Muir on the Wall is one of them. Since this is a nail polish mini, it has a small brush rather than the extra large bush in OPI's full size bottles. I don't mind a smaller brush. It helps with precision, so I don't make a mess. My only complaint with the OPI mini bottles is that the names are not listed on the bottles. I wish OPI would put a sticker on the bottom of the mini bottles like they do on the full size ones.

2 coats in natural indoor light

2 coats in direct sunlight

I have been wearing this shade for a couple of days, and it did chip on the second day that I wore it. That's probably because I have been skipping a top coat on most of my manicures lately. This may be a shade for which I have to make an exception. Muir Muir on the Wall is a beautiful, trendy color, but it's not long lasting on its own.

Elizabeth Arden Makeup -- An Overview

I was so happy and grateful to receive the Elizabeth Arden Beauty On the Wild Side Color Box for Christmas. Before receiving this set, I did not own any Elizabeth Arden items or know anything about the brand. This was a limited edition item, and I cannot find it anywhere online. Even though, you can't go out and purchase this set, many of these items are sold individually. I will do my best to provide links to where you can purchase. I thought I would show you anyway and tell you my thoughts on what I have used so far because I have been playing with these products since the moment I got this set. Elizabeth Arden constantly does sets like this that are offered at a reduced cost when purchased with other products from the brand. There current one can be found here.

This is the front of the cover that was around the box.
Back of the cover with a list of the ingredients
This set comes with a sturdy cardboard and felt box that has a lid with a magnetic closure on the top and a drawer at the bottom. Products in this set include: a deluxe compact with 10 Beautiful Color Eyeshadows nad 2 Beautiful Color Radiance Blushes, a Crystal Clear Lip Gloss, 3 Ceramide Ultra Lipsticks, a mini Ceramide Lash Extending Treatment Mascara, an Eye Pencil, a Lip Pencil, 2 Beautiful Color Luminous Lip Glosses, and a 3 Piece Brush Set.

I am pleasantly surprised with the box itself. It is super cute and will be quite useful to have on my vanity. I love the leopard print and the red interior. It doesn't seem cheap at all and feels quite sturdy, and it's large enough to hold far more than the products that come with it.

The deluxe compact is black plastic with the top in the same leopard print. The compact has a lid that opens straight up with a large mirror inside revealing the ten eyeshadows and has a bottom layer that slides out containing the two blushes and small applicators. This compact is indeed compact and travel friendly.
L-R and top row of ES: Blue Violet, Sand Dune, Chocolate, Periwinkle, Misty Teal-Highlighter
2nd row: Innocence, Graphite, Mauve Pink, Shimmering Copper, Deep Plum
I really like these shadows, but a couple of the names are a bit confusing. Misty Teal-Highlighter is dark teal that goes almost black with applied and swatched. I have no idea why Mist Teal has Highlighter in the name. My guess would be that it is because I found this in a duo and not a single eyeshadow. I've worn most of these colors, and they are very pigmented and blendable. I really like how Innocence, Deep Plum, and Chocolate are matte colors. Innocence would be a great matte highlight color, and Chocolate or Deep Plum would work well as matte transition or crease colors. There's also a good mix of colors and neutrals and matte, satin, and shimmery, sparkly finishes. I was able to find the following colors in single eyeshadow form on the Elizabeth Arden website: Chocolate, Shimmering Copper, Innocence, Periwinkle, and Graphite. Aside from Misty Teal, I cannot tell if the other colors are in duos.

Top-Bottom (on arm and in compact): Romantic Rose, Plum Perfection
I have used both of the blushes and really liked them. Both Romantic Rose and Plum Perfection are very blendable and buildable. I knew that Romantic Rose would look nice with my complexion, but I was concerned about Plum Perfection at first. Plum blushes have a tendency to apply patchy on me, but I am happy to say that this is not the case. Plum Perfection applied smoothly and blended easily. This is a great color to build up on darker skin tones. Both of these blushes are in the permanent line.

gloss in Sweet Pink, lipsticks in Cameo, Peony, and Ruby Rose, gloss in Rosegold
Top to Bottom: Ruby Rose, Peony, Cameo

All three of these Ceramide Ultra Lipsticks are creme finishes. I cannot detect any smell, and there's no taste when you wear them. These lipsticks apply smoothly and are comfortable to wear. They feel very moisturizing on the lips and are as long-lasting as a non long-wear lipstick can be. When they do fade, they do so evenly and are not patchy. I am very impressed with the pigmentation of the Ceramide Ultra Lipsticks. I was not expecting Cameo to be as pigmented as it is! All three of these colors can be found in the permanent line from Elizabeth Arden.

Top-Bottom: Rosegold, Sweet Pink

The Elizabeth Arden Beautiful Color Luminous Lip Glosses have the standard doe foot applicator to apply. They do have a vanilla frosting smell, but you can't smell it once you apply it to your lips. Also, there's no strange taste. The glosses have a thick texture with a bit of staying power for a gloss. Rosegold is a beautiful nude with a very fine gold shimmer in it. Rosegold looks great on it's own or layered over a lipstick or liner and has a nice amount of pigmentation. It's sheer but will show up on your lips. Sweet Pink is a milky pink with a hint of shimmer. This takes a few layers to build up the color. When I wore Sweet Pink on its own, it started to gather and get patchy after just a few minutes. I think this color is better for layering over a lipstick or liner.

Eye Pencil in Black Brown, Lip Pencil in Cocoa Rose

The Eye Pencil in Black Brown is a very pigmented dark brown color. This pencil is soft without being overly creamy and smudgy which I like in eyeliners. It is very easy to apply, and I have been wearing this frequently. It stays in place throughout the day and won't smudge. I could not find this eyeliner or this color on the Elizabeth Arden website.

The Lip Pencil in Cocoa Rose is a very versatile neutral shade. I have worn this with several different lip colors including the ones in this set. Cocoa Rose wears nicely with all three of them. The lip pencil applies smoothly without being overly creamy. I don't prefer overly creamy lip liners because they tend to lack staying power. Even though it isn't extremely soft, the pencil is not hard. It will apply without having to apply a lot of pressure. 

I have used two of the three short handle brushes included in the set. My only complaint about this set is that it did not have any names for any of the brushes or their uses. I know that it does not really matter if you use a makeup brush for its designed purpose or not as long as it works for you, but it does cause some trouble when trying to tell you about them. The large one is obviously a blush brush and it applies blush nicely and blends out the product. The blush brush is very soft. I have used the brush in the middle to apply powder eyeshadow. It is a stiff brush, so it is best for building up color or for applying cream eyeshadow. I would not recommend trying to blend out color with this brush. I have not used the smallest brush. I think it's a lip brush. I'll have to get back to you on that one!

The last two products included in the set are the Crystal Clear Lip Gloss and the Ceramide Lash Extending Treatment Mascara. The Crystal Clear Lip Gloss is meant to be applied alone or over a lipstick for added shine. It has a hint of spearmint flavor and smell, but it is barely detectable and not at all bothersome. The gloss has a thick texture and will stay where you put it. This is perfect for making the lips look fuller and applying to the center of the bottom lip. I like using clear gloss with a red lip.

Because I have several tubes of mascara open right now, I have not opened or used the Ceramide Lash Extending Treatment Mascara.

If you are still with me, thank you for reading this long post! Please let me know if you would like a more in depth review of any of these products. I am still working and playing with them, but I love everything so far!

-xoxo Lauren

Let's be friends!

*Some links are affiliate links, and some links are not affiliate links. I give you links regardless because you're that special! ;)

Manicure Monday Review! CND Vinylux -- Night Glimmer

Happy Monday! It's the first Monday after all of the holidays are over, and I know we all need a little cheering up. If nail polish makes you as happy as it makes me, then you have come to the right place!

Santa and many of his elves knew that I started a beauty blog this year, and I was so blessed to receive many amazing beauty products as gifts. I love and appreciate absolutely everything! One of my gifts was the mini set of the CND Vinylux Forbidden Collection. This collection contains six miniature size nail polishes and one miniature top coat. CND claims that with two coats of color and one coat of the top coat, the polish will wear for a full weak. The Vinylux line has the same colors as the Shellac line, and they can be used to touch up Shellac manicures.

I decided to try Night Glimmer #160 first. The individual color can be purchased here, and the set of minis can be purchased here. This shade is quite interesting. It has a black/brown base with silver micro glitter. Applied, it appears as a metallic black or black with some sparkle. To me, this doesn't seem to be as harsh and is more wearable than wearing a jet black shade. This is similar to Chanel's Black Pearl, but Night Glimmer has larger shimmer particles in it that show up as such on the nails whereas the Chanel has more of an overall sheen without detectable individual particles.

Night Glimmer seemed thick when I first applied which had me concerned. This usually causes problems with smudging before it dries, but I was pleasantly surprised that smudging did not happen.

I must begin this part of the review by saying that I have lost my interest in top coats these days. I find them to turn bad far too soon. I can only get about half of a bottle's worth of use out of a top coat before it dries and gets too think and goopy to be helpful. At that point, if I use it my manicure smudges even after it has dried because there's simply too much product on the nails. I have had this issue with several top coats. And, it's not as if I am letting them get old. I prefer to use one top coat exclusively until it is finished for this very reason.

That being said, I applied one coat of the top coat. It was streaky at first, but it dried nicely without any visible streaking. I liked the shine that it gave my nails. My mother has a set this set, too, and liked the top coat so much that she ordered another in the full size. She has even used it as a top coat for nail polishes from other brands and likes it. I will see how this top coat performs as I continue to use it.

Night Glimmer and top coat did wear nicely, but I did notice some chipping after several days. Below is what it looked like after six days. It wasn't bad, but there was typical tip wear and a chip or two.
Night Glimmer removed easily with regular nail polish remover and a cotton pad.

Have you tried any of the CND Vinylux polishes?
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