Face Five Challenge

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The lovely Tanya from leopard Lace and Cheesecake and Sissi from Beauty4Free2U both tagged me to do the Face Five Challenge. This tag came at the right time because I haven't been into wearing a lot of makeup right now. The weather keeps going from cold to warm and back to cold again, so it's difficult to adjust. 

So, here is the challenge: Create a full face look with only 5 items! 

Here are the rules:
1. Use Five and only Five products to create a complete makeup look.
2. Each different product counts as 1 product. Multipurpose products count as 1 product, such as Benetint, Bombshell the One Stick, Nars Multipurpose Stick. 
3. No palettes are allowed. No trios, quads or multi-shade palettes.
4. Tag Five others to complete the Face Five Challenge
5. Have Fun! 

Here are the items used for this challenge!



1. Physicians Formula mineral Wear Talc-Free Mineral Airbrushing Loose Powder in Translucent Light

2. MAC Powder Blush in Strada

3. tarte emphasEYES clay shadow stick (no color name listed on package, but it is brown)

4. Lancome Definicils High Definition Mascara in Deep Black

5. Clinique Chubby Stick in Mega Melon


Here's the look!





First, I used the Physicians Formula powder as a foundation and concealer. The product says translucent, but it has pretty good coverage. The MAC Strada blush was used to lightly contour and used as a blush. Sadly, this color is discontinued, and I was very lucky to find it at an outlet. Strada is a great color to use to contour if you are pale. For eyes, I used the brown tarte emphasEYES stick as an eyeshadow and made the color more concentrated toward the lashes to define. I also took this color under my lower lash line. Then, I used a coat of the Lancome mascara to finish off the eyes. I have a full review of this mascara here. For lips, I used the Clinique Chubby Stick in Mega Melon to finish off this low maintenance look.

I really like this challenge. It really makes you think about the different ways you can use the products that you have. I have really been enjoying seeing how others have been using their products in new and different ways to complete this challenge.

I would like to tag these beauties!
Micaylah from Beautys Blessings
Tracey from Traceys Beauty
Brittnee from A Beauty Product A Day
Charlotte from Makeup by Candlelight

-xoxo Lauren

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Tag! Would You Rather - Beauty Edition

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Hi beauties! I'm back with another fun tag! I was tagged by Kerry over at Dull to Glam to do the hilarious Would You Rather - Beauty Edition tag. Some of these may be impossible for me to answer, but I will try my best!



1) Would you rather lose all of your mascaras, eyeliners, lipsticks, and lipglosses or lose all of your palettes and eyeshadows?
I will have to go with losing all of my palettes and eyeshadows. I could deal with never having any lipgloss, but I could not deal without having mascara and lipstick. I wouldn't like being without some of my palettes, but I think I could deal with it.


2) Would you rather chop off all your hair or never be able to cut it again?
This is probably going to seem odd considering that I have long hair, but I would rather chop it all off. There does come a point when long is too long. I have had short hair in the past and liked it. My hair grows super fast, so having short hair for a short time wouldn't be that bad.

3) Would you rather have a coral cheek or a pink cheek?
I would rather go with a pink cheek. On my skin tone, coral can be a bit limiting with the other colors I choose for eyeshadow or lipstick.

4) If you had $1000 to spend, would you rather buy clothes or makeup?
This is such a difficult question, but I'm going to have to go with clothes. Makeup can be expensive, but if I'm going to spend some serious cash, then I would love to get a couple of high end clothing items that I can wear for years.

5) Would you rather apply lipstick as eyeliner, or eyeliner as lipstick?
Yikes! Ummm...I guess lipstick as eyeliner. It would be a mess, but I'm sure I have a brownish color that wouldn't look too bad.

6) Would you rather only shop at MAC or Sephora?
I would rather shop at Sephora. I really like MAC for some things, but Sephora has so much variety!

8) Would you rather wear winter clothes in summer or summer clothes in winter?
I would rather wear summer clothes in winter because sometimes you can were I live! This winter it has gone from record lows to near record highs in a matter of days. Climate change is a problem!

9) Would you rather have dark nails or bright nails all year round?
Dark nails. I like brights sometimes, but dark nails could work year round.

10) Would you rather give up your favorite lip product or your favorite eye product?
If I had to give up one it would be my favorite eye product. I'm really into bold lips at the moment.

11) Would you rather only be able to wear your hair in a ponytail or a messy bun?
I wear my hair in a ponytail a lot, but I love the look of a messy bun more. I'll go with messy bun! It can be casual or dressy, and I like having options.

12) Would your rather never be able to paint your nails again or never use lipgloss?
This one's easy! Never use lipgloss. I don't use lipgloss all that often anyway, but I paint my nails around twice a week if not more. I could not give up painting my nails!

13) Would you rather shave your eyebrows and have none at all or sharpie them in everyday?
Oh, wow...this is a no win situation! I have naturally thick eyebrows, and I don't have to do anything to them unless I'm in a show. The no eyebrow look would be really strange, so I'm going to go with sharpie them in every day. 

14) Would you rather live without makeup or nail polish?
This one's easy! I would rather live without nail polish. I wouldn't be the best situation, but I would choose makeup if it came down to that.

This tag is hilarious! I would like to tag a few people, and I tag any of you that wants to participate!
Brittnee from A Beauty Product A Day
Tanya from Leopard Lace and Cheesecake
Sissi from Beauty4Free2U
Lily from Beauty With Lily
Liz from My Pretty Obsessions

If you do this tag, then make sure to send me your link. I would love to read your answers!

-xoxo Lauren

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Lancome Definicils High Definition Mascara Review

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I rarely purchase high end mascaras, but every now and then I do like to try something new. I decided to go with a bestseller that I have never tried before -- Definicils High Definition Mascara from Lancome in Deep Black.


Lancome Definicils does what it claims to do in providing length and definition to the lashes. In one coat I notice that my lashes are long and separated. It does not provide a lot of volume, but it isn't a voluminous mascara. If you are into a natural look, then this is the mascara for you. It gives you long and defined lashes without looking too overdone in one coat. This mascara performs better when you only apply one coat. A second coat will start to clump a little bit, but if you keep working with one coat one eye at a time it seems to work better. If you let one coat dry and apply another, then you will get some clumping. 

Before

One Coat

Two Coats

The brush is a small tapered brush with the traditional nylon bristles. The small size allows you to get very close to the root of the lashes for more definition.



The Lancome Definicils mascara wears very well throughout the day. I haven't seen any flaking or smudging when I wear this. It stays put and does not transfer.

The Definicils mascara removes so easily that it will begin to come off with water alone. Some people won't like that, but I really appreciate not having to use force to remove my mascara.

While this isn't my favorite mascara of all time, I really like this mascara for a nice everyday look. What's your favorite mascara of the moment?

-xoxo Lauren

Let's be friends!


*Some links may be affiliate links. I provide links regardless.
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Glam Glow Youth Mud Review

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As you can probably determine from my Murad Intensive-C Radiance Peel review, I really enjoy exfoliating treatments. When I found a great deal on the Glam Glow Youth Mud mask at Costco many weeks ago, I knew I couldn't pass up on the deal.



You use this product like you would any other face mask, but you have to stir the mask up a bit to make it liquefy. It can look dried out in the jar, but it isn't. Apply a thin layer to your face and leave it on for up to ten minutes. It says on the box that it is a "Tinglexfoliate Treatment," and I would have to agree. I does tingle as it dries. I'm okay with it and like to have it on for the full ten minutes, but you may not be able to leave it on that long if you have super sensitive skin. This mask is one of those that hardens and tightens as it dries. As you wash it off in circular motions the leaves and volcanic rock in it physically exfoliate your skin.



I love the smell of this mask. It smells very herbal, like you really are at a spa. After I remove the mask, I notice that my complexion looks brighter and my skin looks a bit smoother. If I do not notice a difference immediately, then I will notice it the next day. It's nice to use a skincare product that actually has immediate results!

Follow me on Instagram for more lovely photos like the one below!
Mask partially dry

As much as I love this, I do have a complaint. The directions for use are on the box and an insert only. The directions for use cannot be found on the jar. While I realize that this is minor, I did look for the directions when I used this once to double check the length of time to leave it on my face and couldn't find it. It was a good thing that I still had the box. Just be aware of that flaw in the packaging.

Claims and directions

Ingredients


I am so happy that I have this. It really is a great product. Because Glam Glow products are so expensive, I recommend this for special occasions when you need to look your best. I haven't been taking my own advice, though. I have been using it weekly! The Glam Glow Youth Mud mask comes at a pretty hefty price of $69 for the 1.7 fl.oz. at Sephora, so I recommend on waiting on a Friends and Family sale for this! There's also a 0.5 fl.oz. option for $19 if you can't wait. Or, if you're lucky like I was you can find this at Costco!

-xoxo Lauren
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Beauty Love Affair Tag

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Welcome to the Beauty Love Affair tag. We know you're not the kind to kiss and tell; but we want to know. We want the juiciest stories about your current love. Tell us about your worst heartbreaks. Give us the juicy details of your steamiest affair. We want to know if it was love it first sight. Tell us who turned out to be a total jerk. Confide in us about your sweetest temptation. Don't worry, this isn't about the men; it's all about your Beauty Love Affair.

I was tagged by Sissi at Beauty4Free2U. Go check out her blog! She has a unique way of adding humor to her posts that I love! The Beauty Love Affair tag was created by Saffron Lallem of Saffy Style, Ashley Maria of Ashley Maria, Love, Life, Beauty andShalunya of Shalunya & Boyet. They would love to read your answers so please feel free to tag them on Google + or leave a comment on their blogs. 





The Rules:
1 Answer each question with the name of a beauty product and, if you'd like, explain why.
2. Give out more Valentines (tag other bloggers).
3. If you are tagged more than once please feel free to answer the questions again using a different type of product. If you answered the first time with skincare, then answer again with an eye, lip, face, nails, or hair product.  

First Love
Oh.. You remember what it was like to fall in love for the first time. Such bliss and excitement! Who was your first love?
                                             
Cover Girl Clean Pressed Powder -- I used these over and over. It's discontinued now, but ah, the memories!

Puppy Love
Before you knew your real love, there were those childhood crushes that sometimes blossomed into a cute puppy love. Who was yours?
I loved the Bonne Bell Lip Smacker in the Dr. Pepper flavor! Who didn't love this back in the day?


Love Triangle
Such a predicament. This one is so sweet and demure, but this one is so bold and sexy. Tell us about being torn between two lovers. Who were the players in your love triangle?



I go in and out of relationships with cream eyeshadows! I love the Maybelline Color Tattoos and the Benefit Creaseless Cream Eyeshadows. My favorites are the Maybelline one in Barely Branded and the Benefit in Birthday Suit.

Current Love
Dating? Engaged? Married? Who is your main squeeze? Tell us about the one you can't live without or can't seem to let go of. Who is your current love?


I have really been into highlighters lately. One that I keep using over and over is the wet N wild Fergie Shimmer Palette in Rose Champagne Glow. I have a review of the Fergie Shimmer Palettes here. This product is so beautiful and so affordable. What's not to love?

Secret Crush
Even though you're committed to your current love, looking around and admiring from afar never hurt anyone... Who are you secretly crushing on?



Hourglass Mineral Veil Primer! I'm not into primers, but I've heard so many people rave about this. I think I may get the small size of this. It's best to take it slow.

Blind Date
Which was The One that was introduced by a friend or mailbox company e.g Ipsy that you love?


I got a deluxe sample of the Murad Intensive-C Radiance Peel in a Sephora order and loved it so much that I purchased the full size! I have a review of this here.

Steamy Affair
Which was The One that you left your steadfast regular for; the sexy, handsome one that caught your eye and had you hooked in a Steamy Affair?



Laura Mercier Mineral Powder in Tender Rose is my favorite powder foundation, and I love powder foundation! I have the loose and the pressed, and both of them are fantastic! When it is too hot for me to wear liquid foundation or when my skin is misbehaving, this is just perfect.

Sweet Temptation
Which was The One that has snagged your attention but you are only tempted by, you don't know yet whether you want a Steamy Affair or not with?
I'm just not sure about the Urban Decay Naked 3 palette or any of the Naked palettes. That's right, I don't own any of the Naked palettes! And I call myself a beauty blogger. I like the Naked 2, but I think I am most drawn to the Naked 3. Maybe I'll get one eventually, but I think I might have enough eyeshadow for now.

Love At First Sight
You saw it and immediately you loved it.



Tom Ford lipstick in Vampire Kiss -- Are you looking at that swatch?! It was limited edition, so I did not wait. I just got it! There are no words! Swoon!

Double Date
They came in a box set; two great things for the price of one. 
I knew I would love the Lorac Unzipped palette, but the small Behind the Scenes Eye Primer is really nice. It's a small size, but a little goes a long way. 


Friend Zone
You just knew he was amazing; but he's not all that. Who have you relegated to the friend zone? 


Too Faced La creme lipstick in Marshmallow Bunny -- I loved this so much when I swatched it in the store, but I don't like the shade on my lips as much as I thought I would. I'm hoping I can find a liner and a gloss combo that will look fantastic with this. It feels amazing on the lips, though!

Worst Breakup
You wanted to love him forever; but you quickly discovered that he was not 'Mr. Right.' In fact he was awful and broke your heart. Who was your worst breakup?

I got the basic set of Sigma brushes a couple of years ago. I had wanted them for a long time, and people had raved about how good they were. I don't know if the quality has declined with their brushes, but they were terrible! They shed like crazy! As wonderful as affiliate marketing can be, especially in the beauty community, this is an example of how it can be very misleading. I have heard that the Sigmax brushes are amazing, but if they can't make decent basic brushes, then I have no desire to find out for myself. 

I realize that saying things unfavorable toward Sigma products can be dangerous in the beauty community, but I have to keep this blog honest. That was my experience with that one set. I am very happy for you if have had a positive experience with them because I really wanted to love them!

Total Loser 
You were giddy when he asked you out. You had high hopes for a long relationship. Instead he was a complete dud. Who was your total loser?


Maybelline The Elixir -- There seems to be a love it or hate it situation with this product. It has a strong smell and a strong, terrible taste! 

Long Lost Love
You were young and he was among your firsts. You grew, you moved on, you two lost touch with each other. Recently you bumped into each other again and you remembered all the reasons you liked him. Who is your long lost love?



MAC Studio Fix Powder Plus in NC20 -- A makeup artist applied this to my face for an opera I was doing, and I thought there was no way that this powder was going to cover my breakouts and stay on under the hot lights. It covered and it stayed! I have been into powder foundation ever since. I stop using the MAC every now and then, but I always go back to it.

Major Lust
You haven't yet met. You're just loving him from afar because you feel like he's out of your league. Who is your major lust?


The One Perfecting Brush from Becca! It's so expensive for a brush, so I'll keep waiting on this one.

That was so much fun! I tag anyone that wants to do this tag! I know a lot of people have been tagged already, but I would like to tag some that I have not seen tagged. 

I would like to give Valentines to these ladies!
Kerry from Dull To Glam
Veronica from VeroSays!
Tracey from Tracey's Beauty
Claire from Sprinkle of Claire

Feel free to jump in on the fun! Make sure to send me links if you do this tag!

-xoxo Lauren

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Morgan Taylor Nail Lacquer - I'm Charmed Review and Swatches

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I am back with another Manicure Monday post! I skipped last week because my nails haven't been photo worthy these days, but here goes with a post anyway!

Morgan Taylor Nail Lacquer is a relatively new nail polish brand, at least to my knowledge. I was lucky enough to receive a few of these nail polishes from my mother for Christmas. I believe that she got them from a nail supply retailer, but I have found several sellers on Amazon that sell this brand.


Since I have been drooling over Deborah Lippmann's instagram of her Spring collection featuring pastels, the first shade I decided to try is I'm Charmed, a milky pink. I am ready for spring, and it has been showing in my nail polish choices lately.



This type of pastel color is very difficult to pull off if you're doing your own nails. For me at least, light pastels streak so easily. The first coat I applied went on streaky, but the second coat evened everything out. I think the best way to apply is to apply thick coats so no streaks happen in the first place. It dried quickly, so I didn't have to worry about a thicker coat smudging.


I must say that it wears very well. I am impressed that it didn't smudge because smudging is an even bigger problem  for me than chipping. I'm too impatient to wait for my nails to dry. This nail polish was very quick drying.

Have you seen anything from this brand? What are your thoughts?

-xoxo Lauren
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Liebster Award Part 2

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I was nominated for another Liebster Award by the lovely Tanya at Leopard Lace and Cheesecake. I absolutely love the name of that blog! Thank you so much for nominating me, Tanya!



In case you weren't with me for the first Liebster Award, the Liebster Award is a tag for blogs with a smaller following to help them gain exposure.

Here are the Rules:
1.You must link the person who nominated you
2.You must answer the 11 questions set by the blogger who nominated you
3.You can't nominate the person who nominated you
4.You have to choose 11 people to nominate with under 200 followers
5.You must tell the nominees they have been nominated


Here are Tanya's questions!
1. What is your favorite thing about blogging?
I really enjoy all of the interaction with my readers and other bloggers. Nothing makes me as happy with my blog than seeing a comment. You meet so many other bloggers, and it's great interacting with them on their blogs, twitter, and instagram. Everyone is really nice and loves talking about makeup. It is so much fun!

2. What was your very first post about?
It was a review of the Total Intensity by Prestige Long Term Relationship Fierce Color Eyeshadows.

3. What is the hardest thing that you have encountered with blogging?
The hardest thing that I have encountered is feeling overwhelmed with my blog. I have so many posts that I want to get up. I am never lacking on material for the blog, so I can feel overwhelmed and behind on my posts. 

4. What is your favorite store to shop at?
I love shopping at Neiman Marcus, but I limit my trips there for obvious reasons!

5. Who has inspired you in your life?
This is such a sweet question! There are so many people who inspire me for many different reasons, but a few stand out. They are my mother, my childhood piano teacher, and my husband. 

6. What is the first makeup product that you have used?
I am pretty sure that it was one of the Bonne Bell Lip Smackers. I loved all of the different flavors, and I remember being particularly fond of the Dr. Pepper one.

7. What is your favorite movie?
I really like The Wizard of Oz. I haven't watched it in quite some time, though.

8. What is the most that you have ever spent on a single beauty/skin care product?
I think $80. I purchased some rather expensive skin care for someone as a gift. It was a good deal, but I can't remember how much I actually spent. Full price would have been around $140.

9. Summer or Winter?
Right now, Summer all the way! I reserve the right to change my mind in August when it gets above 105 here.

10. Where is the furthest place from home you have been?
Italy! I loved it so much and really want to go back.

11. Salty or Sweet? 
Sweet! I wish it wasn't true, but it is.

These were really great questions! I had a difficult time finding people that had not already be nominated the first time I did a Liebster Award post, so I tag anyone that wants to participate! If you haven't done this tag, then I encourage you to answer these same questions! Please send me a link to your post if you do. I love getting to know more about my fellow bloggers!

Thank you all so much for reading! Feel free to leave a comment; it makes my day!

-xoxo Lauren
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L'Occitane Immortelle Precious Protection SPF 20 Review

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When I was sixteen, I got one serious sunburn. That was all it took for me to become obsessive over wearing sunscreen. In a way, I am grateful for that horrible sunburn because I have kept my skin really protected ever since. Fast forward some years, and it shows! I may be pale, but my skin is relatively damage free.


I get my beauty product obsession honest. My mother is seriously into skincare, so I got some amazing skincare products for Christmas including the L'Occitane Immortelle Precious Protection SPF 20. It takes time to see the benefits of new skincare items, so now that I have used this product for over a month, I believe that I can give a thorough and honest review.

product claims

L'Occitane has a line of products based on the oil of the immortelle flower -- a flower that does not fade after it is picked. This oil is supposed to stimulate collagen production to smooth the skin.


The cream comes in a beautiful blue glass jar with a sticker identifying the product. The silver part of the sticker has rubbed off a bit. While the jar is nice, I am not a fan of jar packaging for face creams. As you use more and more of it, it becomes increasingly difficult to get it out of the jar. Also, I prefer to not have my fingers in my products because it isn't very sanitary. Exposure to the air is another thing that should be taken into consideration.


The cream has a nice botanical smell and, as you can see pictured above, is thick in consistency. It applies smoothly and blends into the skin easily. Because it is a thick and emollient cream, I wait a few minutes before I apply my makeup. I like to give it a chance to absorb. 

Typically, I prefer using an SPF of 30 on my face daily, but I actually don't mind the lower SPF 20 because it is winter. I think that protection from the cold is just as important as sun protection during winter, and this cream does a great job with both. For summer, this would not be a good choice for my skin, but it is perfect for the weather and shorter days right now.

No parabens!

Overall, I really like this product and would more than likely repurchase next winter. The only flaw is the packaging, but I may feel different about it if I got the Beauty Spoon. I just don't think that you should have to make an additional purchase just to be able to dispense the product. If you have a Beauty Spoon, let me know if you think I should get it. I would love to hear your thoughts on it! 

Do you have a favorite product from L'Occitane?

Thank you so much for reading and commenting!

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January Favorites and Fails

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I don't have a long list of favorite products for the month of January. The last month has been dedicated mostly to trying new products that I got during the holiday season. While I really like most of the products I have been trying, I haven't been using them with enough frequency to call them favorites. Because of trying so many new things, I also have a couple of fails.


First up, I have a couple of skincare items from Jurlique. I have not used many things from Jurlique, but I like everything that I have used. The Jurlique Rose Moisture Plus Moisturising Cleanser is a creamy cleanser that does a great job of cleansing the skin without stripping it. Because my skin is typically oily, I normally steer clear of cleansers that claim to be moisturizing. In my mind a moisturizing cleanser won't cleanse my skin as well as one that is clarifying. That isn't the case here. My skin is clean and refreshed when I use it in the morning and free of any makeup or residue when I use it at night. At night, I follow the cleanser with the Rose Moisture Plus Moisturising Cream. This is a very thick moisturizer that contains rose hip oil along with other natural oils to protect the skin. It is heavier than what I have used in the past, but it has been perfect for cold weather this winter. The sides of my nose have been irritated from a case of the sniffles, and this cream has been great for calming the irritation and not stinging the area.


My next favorite is the L'Occitane Immortelle Precious Protection SPF 20 cream that I have been as a daytime moisturizer. This is a product that has been new to me this month, but expect a full review coming soon. I was so excited to receive this because there was an article about this line from L'Occitane in the December 2013 issue of Marie Claire. This is a thick moisturizer with SPF that has really helped to protect my skin from UV rays and the wind and cold. The fact that this cream didn't make my skin too oily and worked well under makeup helps too.


The Rimmel Match Perfection Skin Tone Adapting Concealer has been my concealer of choice for January for the undereye area. This has a squeeze tube with a little brush on the end. The packaging isn't bad, but it does get a little messy. I wish Rimmel would have thought that through a little better; it doesn't quite work very well. The product itself is very nice and convenient to use. It blends quickly and easily and doesn't crease under the eye throughout the day. This is a very nice affordable option for under the eyes; however, this may not have enough coverage for those with serious dark circles.


My last product favorite is the Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Verve. I have long been on the hunt for an eyeshadow exactly like a L'Oreal single that I owned years ago. I cannot remember the name of the shade, and L'Oreal does not appear to sell it anymore. This eyeshadow is the closest match I have found, and I love it. I have been wearing it on its own all over the lid, over a cream eyeshadow base, and with other eyeshadows. Verve is described as an oyster shimmer, and that's accurate. Urban Decay Verve is a very quick, convenient, and easy to wear shade. That seems to be a theme for my makeup picks!

Unfortunately, I have a couple of fails. My first is the Maybelline Color Elixir Lip Color. I had a rather negative experience with this product and reviewed it in my previous post. You can go to the link for all of the information on why that did not work.


My very last fail and product is the John Frieda Root Awakening Shampoo for oily scalp. I have a very reactive scalp, and something in this shampoo made me have a reaction. My scalp got worse while using this! It does contain eucalyptus and peppermint oil, but all of the other ingredients are nothing special. This shampoo also have sulfates, so I think that is what caused the issues. I did not return this because my husband didn't have any problems using it. 

Those were the products that I used on a regular basis and loved last month along with a couple of products that did not work for me. What were your favorites for January 2014?
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