THE TEN: Best of Lip Balms Edition — My Holy Grail & Recommendations

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As many of you are aware by now, I have incredibly sensitive lips. If my lips are not scrubbed and exfoliated at least twice a week, they will crack, dry, and/or peel. This means I am extremely particular about which lip colors, and more importantly, which lip balms I use. In the past six months, I have expanded my horizons and tried just about every popular and praised lip balm on the market. I will be sharing the most memorable ten here in this post. Check out my favorites after the jump!


STYLE: My Spring 2014 LOOK BOOK - Casual Outfits

Look book videos are always huge undertakings and big projects for me, no matter how simple they may appear to be. I give major props to fashion bloggers because it is harder than it looks! The older I get, the less I dress up. I can be found in Lululemon pants and Wildfox Baggy Beach Jumper sweaters most days, meaning that changing five times in one day is an astonishing feat for me. Ultimately, I could not be more proud of the final result. Our little team put so much effort into this look book, so we hope you enjoy it! xo

Makeup Worn:
Laura Mercier Lip Glace in Azalea
Velour Lashes in Guilty, Lashaholic
     *Use promo code RAEVELOUR to receive 15% off your purchase!
Givenchy Rose D'Exception

Outfit 1:
Jack by BB Dakota Caitlin Coat in XS
Theory Len Tubular Tank in Yellow [Nordstrom Rack]
Louis Vuitton Eva Clutch with Adjustable Shoulder Strap

Outfit 2:
Jack by BB Dakota Cadrian Jacket in XS
Theory Len Tubular Tank in Nude [Nordstrom Rack]
Citizens of Humanity Twill Pants in Navy [OLD]

Outfit 3:
Jack by BB Dakota Marlo Blouse in XS

Outfit 4:
Wildfox Couture Daydream Hoodie 
White Lululemon Shirt [OLD]
Paige Denim OLD [Similar Here]
Jessica Simpson Strappy Heels [OLD]
China Glaze Highlight of My Summer Nail Polish [Pedicure]


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Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Ethereal Glow and Diffused Heat Review, Photos, Swatches

The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush ($35 USD each) was the most highly anticipated launch of 2014 thus far. A groundbreaking hybrid that combines the customized lighting effects of the Ambient Lighting Powders with modern hues, these wearable new blushes offer seamless, soft-focus, and multidimensional color. Check out the face swatches after the jump!


BEST OF: By Terry Brand Review, Photos, Swatches + GIVEAWAY!

By Terry has become one of my go-to brands over the years. I love how the creamy and velvety textures are consistent throughout the brand, and the shades offered are all designed to be supremely wearable and flattering. Since I do get regular requests for By Terry recommendations, I figured it would be best to create a comprehensive brand overview. The video is naturally on the longer side since I discuss a dozen products, but I decided to include even more details regarding my favorite By Terry products here. Check out the photos and swatches after the jump!


Dolce & Gabbana Shaping Eyebrow Pencil in Mocha Review, Photos, Swatches

This Spring 2014 season, Dolce & Gabbana Beauty is introducing their first brow tool: Shaping Eyebrow Pencil ($45 USD). Conceived to create a tailor-made shape that enhances the wearer's natural look, this brow liner offers dual functionality with thick and thin aspects of the soft tear-shaped tip. Check out the complete details and comparison swatches after the jump!


The tarte Edit: My Favorite Products & Recommendations for Eyes, Lips, and Face

Due to popular demand, I always try to take time to review non-designer products during the lull between seasonal collections. tarte has been all the rage since gaining traction with their phenomenal Amazonian clay products, so I decided it was high time to share my favorites from this natural brand. Check out the individual product break downs and shades after the jump!


Spring 2014 Fashion & Beauty Haul + Update on Fitness & Tieks!

Call me crazy, but I always wish haul videos could be longer! There is so much to show, but alas, I picked only the latest and greatest to share. For added variety, so I decided to update you on some goodies I had purchased before and have been using/wearing — such as my Tieks and Mat Lumiere foundation! I hope you find this helpful and inspires you to branch out this Spring, whether that means getting in shape for bikini season or just changing up your skin care routine! xo

Haul Products:
Nike Lunar FlyKnit Sneakers in 6
Chinese Laundry Elise Collection Accomplice Booties in 5.5
Tieks Flats in Metallic Pewter in 5
Jack by BB Dakota Caitlin Coat in XS
SK-II Facial Treatment Mask
SK-II Facial Treatment Essence
Marc Jacobs Remedy Concealer Pen in 2 Wake Up Call
Troy Surratt Lip Lustre in Coquette
Chanel Mat Lumiere Liquid Foundation in 20
Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector SPF 25 in Pearl
Becca The One Perfecting Brush

Makeup Worn:
Chanel Mat Lumiere Liquid Foundation in 20
NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Custard [blemishes]
Tarte Amazonian Clay Airbrush Foundation in Fair-Light Honey
Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector SPF 25 in Pearl
Tom Ford Bronzing Powder in Terra
Tom Ford Blush in Frantic Pink
Tom Ford Eye Defining Liquid Liner Pen in Deeper
Chanel Ombres Essentielle in Gri-Gri
Dior Iconic Overcurl Mascara in Black
YSL Glossy Stain in 25 Fuchsia Neo Classic
Velour Lashes in Girl You Craazy
     *Use promo code RAEVELOUR to receive 15% off your purchase!

Wildfox Couture V-Neck Baggy Beach Jumper in XS

Nail Polish:
Givenchy Rose D'Exception
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NARS Spring 2014 Makeup & NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette Reviews, Photos, Swatches

After four years of beauty blogging, I finally caught the NARS bug! It all started with the Radiant Creamy Concealer several months ago, and since then, I have continued to discuss more NARS on YouTube land. I have yet to purchase a full seasonal NARS collection, but the much-hyped Spring 2014 releases of the NARSissist eyeshadow palette and Final Cut cheek and lip products caught my attention. Due to these worthwhile purchases, I anticipate much more NARS in my future!
Now, the NARSissist palette is a great purchase based on numbers but seems to be hit or miss with many. I was quick to order it when it first launched because I wanted to expand my NARS eyeshadow collection. Since receiving it, I have loved experimenting with it. The palette has yielded consistently lovely results, so it is a winner in my book! I acknowledge that some of the shades are not as creamy as their full-size counterparts, but an eyeshadow primer will help smooth out the texture significantly (though I do not find it necessary on my normal lids). Overall, I can confidently say that I prefer the NARSissist to the Naked palettes.

As demonstrated in the tutorial portion of the video, the colors are well pigmented and easily buildable! Since I have discovered that many of the negative reviews are written by those who have merely swatched the palette, I will remind you again that swatching eyeshadows on the arms or hands is not necessarily representative of how they will perform on the eyes. I always encourage others to actually try on a product several times and give it a real effort before dismissing it! Just like with the Smashbox Full Exposure palette, I suggest breaking through the neatly pressed and packed 'seal' of the eyeshadows for best results. Note: I usually love applying eyeshadows with my clean fingertips, but with this NARSissist eye palette, quality eyeshadow brushes will make a noticeable difference in the color payoff and the ease of application/blending as well.

The Final Cut Collection's line-up is stacked with winners, but my favorites were the two that came home with me. The Final Cut blush only requires a tap of the brush, even when used with ultra soft squirrel mixes as I did. The Descanso Satin Lip Pencil is the perfect peach, the one I had been holding out for. It was totally worth the wait! I love that the Satin formula has a hint of glossiness and does not dry out my sensitive lips.

VIDEO: The tutorial for this look is more sultry than what I have been wearing regularly, but I wanted to share a look I have not worn in a while. I became so attached to the bronze color 'Fez' that I decided to create an entire look dedicated to it. The gleaming bronze and warm peachy tones of the blush and lipstick work in perfect harmony! Hope you enjoy it xo

Makeup Worn:
Chanel MatLumiere in 40 + Chanel CC Cream in 20
EM Michelle Phan Concealer Palette in Light [blemishes]
NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Custard [eyes]
EM Michelle Phan Love Me For Me Compact in Linen 8
Tom Ford Bronzing Powder in Terra
Cle de Peau Eyebrow Pencil Cartridge in 204 and Holder
NARS NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette -- Madrague II, Fez, Coconut Grove, All About Eve I + Bellissima I [highlighter]
NARS Eyeliner Stylo in Carpates
NARS Larger Than Life Eyeliner in Via Veneto
NARS Blush in Final Cut
NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Descanso
Stila Lip Glaze in Apricot
Dior DiorShow Waterproof Mascara
Velour Lashes in You Complete Me
     *Use promo code RAEVELOUR to receive 15% off your purchase!

Eye Brushes Used:
Shu Uemura 10f
Hakuhodo J142
Bobbi Brown Blender
MAC 217

House of Harlow White Sunburst Studs

Chanel Paradoxal

J. Crew
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Tory Burch Lip Colors in Call Me, Ramble on Rose, and Pas du Tout Review, Photos, Swatches

Tory Burch launched her own beauty collection last year, and she has created 12 distinctive shades for her new Lip Color Collection. From tomboy neutrals to feminine pinks and bold brights, the collection is designed to flatter a variety of skin tones. Check out my swatches after the jump!


HOW TO | Washing Makeup Brushes + Benjabelle Brush Tree Review [Sunflower]

BRUSH CLEANING 101: I get loads of questions regarding this topic, so I figured it was about time to share all my tips here. Check out all individual steps and product details after the jump!


Coastal Scents Revealed Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches + Giveaway

I continue to receive review requests for great budget buys, so I'm very excited to share the relatively new Coastal Scents Revealed Eyeshadow Palette with you! If you have lusting after the Urban Decay Naked 1 & 2 palettes ($52 each), then tune in because this review is dedicated to the most affordable 'dupe' I have found. Check out the swatches and enter to win after the jump!


EM Michelle Phan Scribble Calligraphy Liquid Liners Review, Photos, Swatches + GIVEAWAY

I love eyeliner of all kinds, but EM Michelle Phan's new Scribble Calligraphy Liquid Liners have changed the game! I will share descriptions and swatches of all eight shades here and provide you with comparisons to other matte cream and liquid eyeliners as well. Check out all the details after the jump and find how how you can win a set of your very own!


Sulwhasoo Snowise EX Brightening Fluid and Cream Reviews, Photos

This review is dedicated to an incredible new range of skin care that I discovered thanks to Instagram! I had initially planned to include these Sulwhasoo products in my February Favorites video, but I wanted to focus strictly on the Snowise range and provide as many details possible here. Read more about my experiences with these exceptional moisturizers after the jump!


February 2014 Favorites [Hits & Misses] feat. Eyeshadow Palettes, Brushes, Skin, etc.!

February was such a busy month, and March will only be more hectic! I had to whittle this video down and leave out some skin care products, but I will be sure to cover them individually here on the blog later this month. Instead, I chose to discuss some of the hottest new makeup releases from Smashbox and NARS here in this episode, as well as the Hakuhodo face brushes I have been enjoying for the past few weeks. I hope you enjoy the video! xo

Tom Ford Eyeshadow Palettes in Cocoa Mirage and Seductive Rose 
Stila Lip Glazes in Fairy Dust & Apricot 
EM Michelle Phan All Over Face Brush
Make Up Forever 112 Foundation Brush
Sigma Beauty F69 Angled Pixel Concealer Brush 
GlamGlow Brightmud Eye Treatment
     *Get 30% Off ALL GlamGlow HERE with Promo Code: RRBM
     **Unfortunately this code was discontinued by the manufacturer. Sorry for any troubles!** 
ENJOY Conditioning Spray & Luxury Conditioner 
     *Get 20% Off ALL Enjoy HERE with Promo Code: RREJ

Makeup Worn:
EM Michelle Phan Concealer Palette in Light 
NARS NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette [All About Eve I, Nepal, Ashes to Ashes, Mekon] 
EM Michelle Phan Scribble Eyeliner in Tattoo Black   
Hourglass Film Noir Mascara 
Velour Lashes in Guilty, Lashaholic 
     *Use promo code RAEVELOUR to receive 15% off your purchase!

House of Harlow White Sunburst Studs

Chanel Spring 2014 Tapage


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The Makeup Show 2014 Haul! Hakuhodo + NARS + Stila

I always look forward to The Makeup Show! It is a beauty trade show, much like IMATS, but it has a more intimate feel. I was not able to take as many photos as I had hoped, but you can always take a look at my thorough Photo Diary from last year's show HERE! Today, I will focus on sharing my haul goodies, especially since many of you have continued to ask questions about Hakuhodo brushes. I expanded my collection quite a bit, so check out my new babies after the jump!
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