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Recently in Cosmetics: Face Category

When we first received our package from L’Oreal Paris containing their new Magic Smooth Souffle makeup, we read through their product information and all we could think of was “Huh?” With terminology like elastomer, microspheres and Mati-Crystal Technology, no wonder it’s just put simply as magic

But, confusion aside, I prepped my face for using the mousse-textured foundation, and started applying with my fingers. I definitely had a preconceived idea of what this was going to look like on my face. I used to be a regular user of Maybelline’s mousse foundation - mostly because of the coverage - but switched to mineral makeup because of the dull, matte look it left on my skin. I was pleasantly surprised, though, because my face was smooth and luminous. 

The consistency starts out thick and creamy, and as you apply it to your face, it turns velvety and dry (but not drying.) I was most impressed with by the Magic Smooth Souffle makeup was the even application. I always have a hard time getting even coverage with liquid/cream foundations, but not the case here. My face felt nicely primed for blush and eye makeup, and light as air (I really hate that cakey feeling, as we’re sure most ladies do.) Though the shade we were provided with was a touch too light, I’m sure I could find the right  tone in the dozen colors available. 

After the 10-hours-of-use mark, my face was still intact from the morning application. Plus, my oily complexion seemed much more under control than it normally is. The only thing I wish it delivered was some SPF, but sounds like a winner to me! $14.99,

We love mineral makeup, and above all, we love bareMinerals mineral makeup. Since their prime, their starter kits have been all over Ulta and Sephora. They are great, because they give you everything you need to, well, start. 

That kit hovered around the $60 mark, which was always a little steep (but well worth it). Well, just recently, bareMinerals reached out to the skeptical first-time shopper and released the Try. Believe. Love. kit for an incredible $20!

Though all the products are smaller, and it doesn’t come with their amazing kabuki brush (that’s what creates that airbrushed look), it does come with the following: Original and Matte SPF 15 foundation, Mineral Veil finishing powder, SPF 20 concealer, mini full flawless face brush and mini concealer brush. The $60 kit comes with two shades of foundation, the extra brush, and what they call “warmth” which is a transparent, bronzer-like powder. 

Overall, we think the Try. Believe. Love. kit is a fantastic pre-starter for the beauty maven who is interested in diving into mineral makeup, but wants to dip her toes in first. $20,

Stila-One-Step-correct.jpgClaims: This innovative, triple-swirled helix serum instantly color corrects, brightens and covers skin imperfections for a flawless face with no fuss. 

This primer, color corrector, brightener and anti-aging skincare serum instantly makes imperfections disappear, reduces lines, wrinkles, pores and pigmentation, and hydrates, controls oil and improves skin texture.

The revolutionary new product contains 3 color-correcting brighteners:
  • Green tone instantly neutralizes redness and conceals blemishes
  • Lavender tone counteracts sallow undertones for a vibrant, energized look
  • Peach tone brightens, illuminates and helps diminish the appearance of sun spots
Our take: We aren’t going to lie and say the eye-catching, tri-color design wasn’t the first thing to attract us to the Stila One Step Correct, because it absolutely was. We’re also not going to say that on our first try, we weren’t a little disappointed that all of our skin imperfections weren’t magically erased as it claims. We still needed to use concealer on some old acne scars that have stubbornly decided to stay put on our cheeks. But, with one and a half pumps of this serum slathered on our faces (that absorbs super quickly, and feels nice, cool and smooth going on), our skin took on a nice, glowing property. Not like this-stuff-makes-our-face-greasy glow, but a nice, underlying glow. 

Once we put on our makeup, we definitely noticed a difference in the look of our complexion. It was more even, but not in a fake, too-much-makeup kind of way. Throughout the day, our oily skin was less slick, and our makeup stayed put all day. This doesn’t happen normally, so we were very much impressed. 

Whether our pores and pigmentation have been reduced or not, we honestly can’t really tell, but as a face primer over moisturizer, this stuff works great. We can’t imagine putting on our mineral foundation without it anymore. It’s pretty pricey, but after forgetting it at home over the holiday weekend and seeing the difference in our final made-up look, we’d gladly spend extra for it! $36,
Almay-Concealer.jpgOK, so sometimes, prestige makeup brands (think M.A.C., Nars, Lorac, etc), are really worth the price tag. They deliver on their promises. Their products last on your skin and don’t rub off the moment you put your hand up to your chin in an extended, deep thought. But sometimes, you can find the same powerful punch in a very valuable package. 

Such is the case with Almay’s Clear Complexion Concealer. Now, we’ve tried a lot of concealers in our days. We have oily, acne-prone skin that tends to scar easily when we just can’t resist the naughty pop. So finding a concealer that stays in its place, covers well but doesn’t look caked on, and blends nicely is sort of (very) important to us. The medium color works perfectly with our tan skin tone, and isn’t too pinky-beige like some other concealers in that color range. Almay’s covering gem has salicylic acid in it, as well, which helps tame occasional breakouts, but don’t really expect clear-skin wonders from it either. Where this product shines is in its coverage and texture. 

We’re a fan of its consistency - not too thick and cakey, not too thin and runny. It covers discoloration and acne-scarring wonderfully when you follow it up with foundation (we use mineral makeup.) After a long, oily day, we appreciate its staying power, too, and the oil-free, hypoallergenic formula doesn’t add to our ever-present t-zone slickness. Though the package mentions not to use it near your eyes (we imagine because of the salicylic acid), we often use it for under eye coverage without any irritation whatsoever. Overall, for under $10, this is the best concealer your drugstore has to offer. $7.99 at
We firmly believe that certain products are best bought as sets (think eyeshadow duos, gloss palettes), but we never really ventured into blush/bronzer sets….until now! How cool is Hourglass Cosmetics’ new Illume Créme-to-Powder Bronzer Due?! Encased in their signature swivel compact, this new pair includes both a bronzer to add a little healthy color and a blush for a rosy glow.  We naturally gravitated towards the bronzer first, but couldn’t resist giving our cheeks a little extra flirt with the blush. It’s the best of both worlds.

As always, Hourglass is  free of parabens, phthalates and sulfates. $40, Available in May online at Sephora.

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