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I bought these two palettes awhile ago when Ulta had a “spend X amount and get a free gift” going on. I bought the Strobe palette for I believe $15 and got the Radiance palette for free. Unlike the eyeshadow palette I reviewed on my previous blog, I have been using these off and on since I got them…I just never got around to really talking about them.

I couldn’t use my little ring light because the cases are so reflective. They both came in boxes which I forced myself to throw away (I love holding onto packaging for some weird reason). The cases are plastic and snap closed. They are decently sturdy and pretty travel friendly. They aren’t overly bulky or anything. I actually don’t care for how reflective the cases are though because all of the inevitable finger prints drive me insane lol. Both also have mirrors inside.

The top one is the Strobe palette and the bottom is the Radiance.

So I mostly use the first swatch you see. The other two show up better on my face as a highlight than what the swatch suggests; however, that first one is the only one that seems “strobing” to me. The other two are pretty but a little more subtle.

The Radiance palette is what I expected from the name. All three are more of a subtle glow. The third one is obviously not meant for my skin tone but I think it’s the prettiest shade 🙂 I use the middle shade the most.

I honestly don’t mind these palettes. I don’t think I would have bought both at full price. I saw both of these at Marshall’s for like $6 and I would recommend either for that price. They aren’t the best highlighters in the world but they are by no means the worst I have seen! Which palette would you prefer? Anyone else use these?

-AV

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I bought this palette about a month ago at Marshall’s. I got it for $5.99, and it retailed for $12. It is the Makeup Revolution London Flawless Matte 2.

I wasn’t very impressed at first, so I didn’t do much with it at first. I’m wondering if it was maybe a little old because it swatched horribly the first time. But after playing with it a little, I have grown to like the right half of the palette.

On my skin, most of the left half just either looks the same or doesn’t really show up. But for $6…I can find some use for it. I think I would have been mad if I had bought it for $12… I really like the oranges, blues, and greys, and there are a couple of purple shades that are nice. I just tend to go for brighter, more stand out shades.

I was too lazy to do a row and wipe it off haha, so you get me twisting my arm in a semi painful way to show all four rows at once 😂 To be honest, it would have been underwhelming to do each row separate.

I have a highlighter palette from them that I really like…I would try more shadows from them I think. Especially if they are on sale lol

What do you guys think of Makeup Revolution London? Good drugstore brand or just kind of meh?

-AV

So I’ve only gotten four BoxyCharm boxes so far, but three out of the four palettes they’ve chosen have been great. I thought I would do a little update on the palettes since I seem to post what I got and then no update!

First off…the third palette I received which is not pictured here is Laura Lee Cosmetics Party Animal. One, it’s not pictured because I gave it away and didn’t keep the pictures on my phone. They are in a previous post if you would like to check it out. Two, I hated the palette, which is why I gave it away. That whole box was pretty worthless to me tbh.

My favorite palette so far is….

Alamar Cosmetics Reina Del Caribe Vol 1. I love love love this palette! It retails for $28 and I would 100% recommend it for that price. The shimmers are gorgeous…they are best applied with a fingertip or a wet brush. The mattes don’t swatch amazingly but they do apply and blend very well.

My second favorite palette so far is…

Crown Brushes Fuego palette. This originally retailed for $30 but when I just googled it for the price, I saw it was on sale on the Crown Brushes website for $9.99! I was going to say for the price of BoxyCharm ($21), I would 100% recommend this. But for $9.99…go get this palette! Again, the shimmers are beautiful…that middle one on the top row is my absolute favorite. It’s like a pink gold and reminds me on a sunrise 🙂 The mattes again don’t swatch the greatest but they apply and blend well.

My third favorite palette is then, of course…

Pretty Vulgar’s Nightingale palette. This retails for $35. I think that’s a bit steep. I would not buy it at that price, but it was totally worth the price of the box. If you find this one sale, and you need some cool tones, I say grab it. I don’t have a lot of cool tones and it was a nice change from the usual palettes. I really like the grey shades. Some of the shades aren’t the greatest (like the first white does not even show up on my skin), and some of the mattes really need built up. I’m enjoying it so far over all.

Anyone else still using these palettes. Which is in your favorite stack? I’m just so in love with the Alamar palette. I can’t wait for another one from them! 😍

-AV

Check out my Instagram Avlovesmakeup for looks and updates

September’s BoxyCharm!

I’m quickly starting to once again feel I need to drop ipsy and just with BoxyCharm. It’s fun getting both, but other than last month, BoxyCharm just blows ipsy out of the water. My ipsy should be here tomorrow, but I did the sneak peek to see what I was getting already.

This is just an overview of the box. I will hopefully do updates on what I like and how everything works 🙂 If you don’t know… BoxyCharm is a monthly subscription. If you pay monthly like I do, it’s $21/month. You can do bundles like 3 months, 6 months, or a year, and you do pay less a box. However, if you do a bundle, you can’t cancel and get a refund. If you do monthly, you can cancel monthly.

This month’s theme was Wild Child. My box added up to $117 with 5 full sized products. There are always a few product variations.

I was not excited for the eyeliner. It’s from Butter London and is a stroke of wow roll on liner. It doesn’t look super opaque to me and I know I will not be able to use it lol.

The blush is Laura Gellar Baked Blush-n-Brighten. It’s very pretty and is a little shimmery, but I’m excited to try it.

The liquid lipstick is Hank & Henry. I love the color and it does dry down matte.

The brushes are from Alamar Cosmetics. They had their palette a few boxes back and it’s amazing, so I’m glad to see the brushes 🙂 They are pretty!

Finally we have the palette! It’s from Pretty Vulgar and is the Nightingale palette. I actually was looking for grey shades, so this was great to get. It looks like the mattes will need built up, but I’m ok with that if they blend well and do their job 🙂

Anyone else get BoxyCharm? What was your favorite product? So far I’m most excited for the lipstick. I think it will look nice on!

-AV

I want to throw in some mental health posts or similar topics amongst my makeup posts. I feel like I find a lot of kindred spirits who are in the same or similar position to me.

I am only speaking on being a working mom because that’s all I have experience in. I am in no way or shape purposefully excluding the issues stay at home moms have…I just can’t personally speak on that topic.

In summary: man it is tough some days. Some days I have the most stressful days at work, then I pick up Genevieve (who is currently 17 months old)…my mom says she was a peach all day but then she just throws fit after fit all evening. I’m already riled up from work and it’s so draining to switch from work mode to mom mode. I can’t snap or be short with anyone at work, and I most certainly don’t want to with my baby. So all that frustration just stays inside. Super healthy.

Then there’s the guilt and longing. I want to be a stay at home mom. I long to do that while also feeling guilty that I’m not. Genevieve has started screaming and grabbing my legs when I drop her off at my mom’s house in the mornings. So I start my days sad and again, feeling guilty.

Then there’s the sadness. I’m working away and get a text…she just said a new word! Here’s a picture of her smiling away and playing. I want to be there, but I’m staring at this report on my computer.

I feel like this post kind of isn’t going anywhere, but days like today I just feel kind of scattered and sad. I had to call off work because I had no one to babysit and I had such a great day. I wasn’t nearly as stressed out as normal and Genevieve seemed happy to play with me all day. And I wasn’t trying to put cleaning up the house and doing errands into the 3-4 hours after work that Genevieve is with me and awake. I did stuff throughout the day and didn’t feel rushed. And I actually got some tasks done I had been putting off.

It’s hard to find time to post in my blog or take Instagram pictures or read up on new makeup. But I will just keep trucking along the best I can!

So to the working moms…I feel you. Keep doing your best! And cherish the time you do get to spend with your babies ❤️

-AV

Current Favs: Blushes

This is just going to be a short blog today. I believe I did a favorite blushes a few months ago, but since then I have gotten quite a few more. I actually don’t wear blush super often but I have been trying to wear it more often since I have accumulated so many! It seems both Ipsy and BoxyCharm like blushes, and I have bought some myself along the way.

My current absolute favorite is from Note Cosmetics in Desert Rose. This came in a BoxyCharm and I wasn’t excited until I tried it on. It’s a beautiful coral-y color and looked great on!

I picked this up from Wet n Wild. It was from their Birds collection (I can’t remember the whole collection name) but this is the shade Hummingbird Hype. I have to be wearing pretty neutral everything else because this is shimmery bright orange-coral! But man is it beautiful!

This is a pretty summery shade but I might sneak it in as long as I can 😁 This is Benefit Cosmetics Galifornia. If you are seeing a trend…it’s a beautiful pink-coral color. It does have a tiny bit of shimmer to it, but it’s nothing crazy. I took a picture of the packaging because mine magically shattered inside 😢 I still use the pieces though! I also bought this myself.

Next is Steve Laurant Cosmetics in Rose All Day. (It’s Rose with a little dash over the e…I can’t get my phone keyboard to type it!) I got this in an ipsy bag. I love that even though it’s a travel/sample size, it still has a mirror! I’m not super crazy about pink blushes. They can look weird since I am pretty cool-toned. But I do like this one with a light touch!

Finally we have Pixi by Petra, shade Beach Rose. This also came in an ipsy bag and I was so excited when I pulled it out! It is so buttery and smooth. It’s more of a neutral color on me than the name implies, but it’s nice for a natural look!

The swatches: (from bottom to top, Note Cosmetics, Wet n Wild, Benefit, Steve Laurant, and Pixi is at the top/nearest to my wrist)

These are “double dip” swatches. I swatched, dipped in my finger again, and swiped a second time. Each of them are pretty pigmented on the face with one light brush dip.

What’s everyone’s favorite blush?

-AV

Check out my Instagram Avlovesmakeup! ❤️

This is just a quick “look what I got” post lol. I literally can’t stop buying eyeshadow. I have so many. And I concluded awhile ago I should just stick to palettes because it makes more sense than buying singles. However… Colourpop was doing a last call sale on a bunch of singles, so broke down and bought a bunch haha. But I did buy a magnetic blank palette so it’s kind of like I bought a palette 🤷

I say this every time, but let’s talk packaging. Omg they have the best packaging! Even the box lid is freaking cute!!

Then they put in those cute little cards. I love them and save all of them 😂

The pink box in the bottom picture is the palette! It is so sturdy feeling, closes with a magnet, and is super sleek. I love it. It has a really cute design on it and is light/pale pink.

These are the shades I bought! I would list all of the names but I’m too lazy to pick each one up 🙋 If you want to know a specific one though I would be more than happy to tell you lol.

Now the best part…swatches!

So I love Colourpop because they are very affordable and have good stuff for the price. These aren’t the most amazing shadows I’ve ever worked with, but they keep me going back. They are buildable, blendable, and they have an amazing range of colors.

Here are two eye looks. Don’t judge them on these…I did these in like 5 minutes each.

Anyone else a Colourpop addict? 🙋

-AV