The Monkey Is In.

So be prepared. Bring a banana.

I'm a writer of horror and dark fiction. I've been doing this since 1999 and believe me when I say, it's cheaper than therapy and safer for the world at large.

Filtering by Tag: makeup brush

Ipsy April 2018

For those who may not know, Ipsy is a monthly subscription service. For $10 you get 4-5 sample sized (sometimes full sized) makeup, skin care, and hair care products along with a reusable makeup bag. Check them out here: IPSY

(I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones)

April's theme: Social Butterfly. Because yes, that's EXACTLY what the introvert in me wants.

April's theme: Social Butterfly. Because yes, that's EXACTLY what the introvert in me wants.

Each month Ipsy creates a theme for the bag. While I hate them most of the time, this being no exception, the bag itself is so frakkin cute! The pink toned butterflies are pretty, the rose gold accents are beautiful, and that little card can go fuck itself. Don't ever count on that card to have useful information, by the way, unlike every other service out there. 

Anyway, let's get to the products. I'm pretty sure I'm excited about all these and mildly okay with one.

H20+ Oasis Hydrating Treatment: I want to say I've tried at least one product from this brand before thoughI can't remember for sure. But I'm excited to try this gel-like moisturizer. I've had good luck with all brands that come out with this kind of formula so I'm hopeful this will be amazeballs, too. Full size is $38 so this sample runs about $7.50. (I can't find ANY info on their cruelty free status so I've emailed them directly.)

Purlisse Coconut Oil and Coffee Sugar Body Scrub: I've used face products from Purlisse that can suck my dick but this body scrub is awesome. Gentle but effective exfoliation, the oil leaves your skin soft (it does coat your tub/shower so be careful of that!), and it smells divine. Not like sweetened coffee - just a good strong coffee scent. You can actually purchase this sample size tube on their site and it goes for $10. It's good for one use, though, and that's it. If you're bigger than me, it won't be enough (Says CF on their site but no other website backs that up).

20180419_130607.jpg

Ciate London Starstruck Double Ended Stamp liquid liner (black): At first I thought the stamp was going to be wing shaped, which I would not be opposed to trying because the struggle to get a good wing on my eyes is real. But this is a star because it's festival season (Coachella - who outside of California fucking cares) so I was a little disappointed. However, it looks so cute on the face (don't mind the lines on the hand stamp - product got on the base of it but you can get a clean stamp if you're careful). So since the liner end works pretty well, nice and black, easy to use, I'll let the star stamp slide. This particular eye liner is not available on the Ciate or Ipsy site so it must be an exclusive. The link I provided is for their regular eyeliner and it goes for $18 (CF).

Paula Dorf Bronzer in Bora Bora: I seriously thought this was an eye shadow until I went to Ipsy to get info on the product. Whoops. But that just proves they always send bronze or browns or neutral shades all the time so it was easy to mistake this for eye shadow. That would explain why it's not too warm or cool a color. It's a nice neutral shade that should look nice on everyone (at least with fair skin). I only use a little bronzer, if at all, and I have 3 of them already so I might not keep this. It's a nice shade, though, and feels nice on the skin. Full size is $32 so this sample is about $6.50 (Says CF on their site but again, can't find confirmation anywhere).

20180414_172212.jpg

Glamour Dolls Romantic Rose blending brush: Never mad to get a brush! And I think this has replaced my favorite Real Techniques brush for crease work. This is the perfect mix of precision shadow placement and blending. It's soft but not too soft, tapered to get the shadow right where you want it but doesn't plop down color that won't blend out. It's pretty perfect. Full size and is $5 (CF and Vegan).

Overall value runs about $47. Not too bad. I'm not completely surprised that I couldn't find CF status confirmation on several sites. A lot of brands are not well known and/or don't pay to have PETA or Leaping Bunny certify them. But it does leave me a little leery of what brands Ipsy is committed to working with for the bag each month. 

Ipsy January 2018

All righty. Here we are, 2018, new year, new Ipsy bag, same lame ass non-info card bullshit...

For those who may not know, Ipsy is a monthly subscription service. For $10, you'll get 4-5 sample (sometimes full) sized makeup, hair, skin care products, and a reusable makeup bag. Check them out here: IPSY

(I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones)

20180111_180441.jpg

January's theme is Game Face, I think. To be honest, I usually throw away the card the second I take it out of the bag. It's covered in bullshit platitudes, heavy handed 'inspirational' crap, and I can hardly believe it but I'm sure it's even smaller than last year. To play devil's advocate with myself, they're probably saving $$ by not making it larger and are able to get companies like The Balm, Ole Henriksen, and other well-known brands to get their products in here. But still....SO FUCKING WEAK.

The bag is an absolute hideosity. I just can't even...the contrasting colors are so 80s, which might be on trend but as a child of that era, I don't ever wanna see it again! However, I'm digging the products this month!

20180112_102527.jpg

Absolute New York Eye Artist Single Shadow (Posse): This shadow is soft but not crumbly, decently pigmented, and does look very pretty on the eye. It swatches like a warm orange/brown but it's actually a rose-taupe color. It's nothing super special so I'll probably donate it. Looks full size and goes for $5. (their website says CF but I can't find any corroboration on that from my cruelty free resources so...?)

The Balm Mary-Lou Manizer: I've tried quite a few products from this brand through Ipsy and I've been satisfied with most. I've never tried this cult favorite and now I can! Though I hate the size of their samples (sometimes the small pans are difficult to work with) I'm usually happy to get something from them. I'm sort of okay with Mary-Lou. It's described as a warm honey color but it looks more light gold. Can look like a wet, high-shine accent on the skin, which is nice. In some light, though, I can see all the sparkle (mirco glitter, at least, and not giant chunks). So I do and don't like it. When I'm in the mood to look like a micro fairy jizzed on my face, I'll probably reach for this. Full size is $24 so this 1g sample is around $3. (CF)

20180111_180809.jpg

Cake by Cake Beauty Heavenly Cream Intensive Body Balm: I still have 2 or 3 other lotions from Cake Beauty but they are all different formulas! This stuff smells fantastic and absorbs well. It's 20% shea butter and also contains aloe and camellia leaf extract. I look forward to smelling like vanilla frosting for the next 6 months. Mmmm...frosting (disclaimer: don't be an asshole and eat lotion. That's just dumb.) Full size goes for $22 so this 1 ounce sample runs around $4.50. (CF)

Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Eye Cream: Holy hell the website claims this eye cream can do ALL THE THINGS - brighten, reduce dark circles, firm, instantly reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and is great for under concealer. Then there's a long list of data including lots of "100%" and asterisks and on and on. Personally that comes off as trying too hard but that's just me. The first time I tried it, it felt thick and sticky and didn't brighten anything. BUT it did feel moisturizing and it absorbed rather quickly for such a thick cream. I thought it would be too heavy under concealer but damn if the Tarte Shape Tape didn't look great! If nothing else, at least it'll provide some moisture during this frigid winter season! Full size is $38 so this teeny sample is maybe $7.50. (CF)

SLMISSGLAM L36 Tapered Highlight Brush: I love getting brushes. And I'm not usually a girly-girl, but the pink glittery handle on this is adorbs. The synthetic bristles are super soft and it works perfectly with the Mary-Lou Manizer highlight sample! Apparently it works with powders, creams, and liquids but...because it's kind of flimsy, I'm not so sure about that. I'll have to test it out. Full size. This brush is not available on the SLMISSGLAM site (which actually makes me want to throw up it's such a pastel rainbow unicorn glitter shit show) so it may be an Ipsy exclusive. I've linked the closest looking set of 6 brushes which goes for $80. So maybe this brush is around $13. (CF)

All told this bag is around a $33. Not terrible but I've had bags that are upwards of $50-$70 so it's kinda weak. However, I do think I'll get a lot of use out of the products this months so it's still a win for me!

 

Ipsy December 2017 Review

The end of 2017 is upon us. And so is my last Ipsy review for the year. For those who don't know, Ipsy is a monthly subscription service. For $10 you receive 4-5 sample (sometimes full) sized makeup, skin, and hair care products. Check it out here: IPSY

(I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones)

20171221_120225.jpg

I guess the theme this month is Snow Globe, whatever the fuck that's supposed to mean. Who cares anyway? The bag, though, is awesome. It looks like some kind of fancy clutch you'd take to a party or something. So yeah, that's a keeper. Let's see what's inside this month!

The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Cream: Doesn't sound to great, does it? Who wants their creams watery? But, according to the on-line description, this is supposed to be a great gel based moisturizing cream with 63% fermented green tea extract (instead of water). I do like the gel based ones. They're kiind of cool. Haven't tried this and I probably won't because Tony Moly is not cruelty free. Full size is $25 so this sample should run around $4. (NCF)

Nip + Fab Dragon's Blood Fix Pumping Serum: I love the glycolic cleansing pads from N+F so when I got this in my bag, I was pumped! No pun intended. Haven't opened it yet because I've still got half a bottle of The Ordinary buffet serum to use up. Full size is $20 so this sample is worth about $8. (CF)

Luxie Beauty Precision Shader Onyx Brush 239: I'm never mad at brushes, y'all. This is a nice compact shader with a slight taper to it. It really can put shadow RIGHT in the crease. It's not as good at blending that color out if you got too precise and heavy with a shadow so keep that in mind. This is full size and is valued at $14. The link is to their Rose Gold style - the black handle might be an Ipsy exclusive. Not sure. (CF)

Pixi by Petra Mesmerizing Mineral Duo in Orchid Ornament: I've never tried Pixi shadows before. I've heard mixed reviews so I've never wanted to spend the money on them. They're not high end pricing but they're not drug store either. These are two very soft and beautiful shades. They actually seem different in the pan compared to on the skin. I can't quite put my finger on it! You can see in the swatches that these shades can be built up but for my eye look, I just powdered my eyelid and swept a little of each color on (the gold on the lid and the dark rosy brown in the crease). These particular shades aren't available on the Pixi website (again, might be exclusive to Ipsy) and the mesmerizing minerals only come in 6-pan palettes. But they all look really pretty! Full size is $12 so this little duo is probably around $3. (CF)

NYX Faux Blacks Eyeliner in Obsidian: I actually own two other colors in this line. They're not great (one is Oxblood, the other is Olive but I kept the red one because I have no other color like it) so I was a little bummed about getting this. AT FIRST. Boy was I wrong about Obsidian. First, you'd think the name would indicate it's black but it's actually a dark, dark blue. Second, I've never encountered an eyeliner that stayed on my tight line and waterline as long as this one. MAYBE the Urban Decay 24/7 came close. So holy fuck me I love this pencil. It goes on super creamy so it wears down very fast. But I can live with that! This is full size and goes for $8. (CF)

Total bag value is around $37. Not too bad considering only one of the items isn't cruelty free and I'm stoked for everything else, including the bag. Nice little holiday wrap up (heh, see what I did there?) for 2017. Hope you all have a wonderful, safe, and happy holiday! See you in 2018.

FINAL Medusa's Makeup December 2017 Review

Well, the time has come. December is my final month for the Medusa's Makeup monthly subscription box. It's been fun and I've really enjoyed about 50% of what I've received. Not the best score, not the worst, but not enough to keep going. At least for now. The good news is I've gone out on a pretty dang good note!

In case you'd like to check them out, head to their website for all pricing, inventory, etc. MEDUSA'S MAKEUP

(I paid for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones)

20171214_104420.jpg

The makeup bag included this month is new (valued at $8.00). It feels like it's made out of canvas, something sturdy. It's actually kind of nice but I don't know if I'll keep it. I have so many from Ipsy....oh fuck it. I'll toss one of those and replace it with this! The personalized note is also new. Very nice touch!

Contour Brush: I've received their eyeliner and angled brushes in past months and I've enjoyed them. The eyeliner one is too thick for precise lines but it still works if you don't mind a little messy application. This one is a flatter, denser brush with a slight point. It will be great for getting into the eye socket/crease. $6.00 (on their site they only have the whole set for sale but if you've never tried their brushes, $18 for the set is a good price to find out how they work for you)

Lip Balm: I was so excited to get this. I really wanted to know how it is, since it's new. I've only used mine once so far (since I have about 6 already opened around the house) but it feels really nice, seems to last a good while on the lips, and smells great. $8.95

Eye Dust in Golden Boy: DEAR FUCKING GODS WILL YOU LOOK AT THAT GORGEOUS COLOR!!! If I've learned nothing else from MM, it's that their eye dusts are fantastic (not the Mystical Eye Dusts - those are kinda lame). And that's not a built up swatch. I had very little product on my finger when I made that. So pigmented! I've already planned out a look for a convention I'm working this weekend so I can wear this. Ah...I feel faint...so...beautiful........ $8.00

Lipstick in Triple X: I've only received one regular lipstick from them before and it was beautiful. This is just as creamy and comfortable so I do recommend a lip liner. I was worried this was going to be way too bright of a fuschia for me. But the top pic is just one layer and it's rather sheer. It's perfect if you just want a little bit of a brighter color but aren't ballsy enough (or maybe bright fuschia doesn't work with your skin tone) to go full saturation. It can be built up so the second swatch shows that. Took 3-4 swipes across each lip to get this opacity. I have to admit I really like it both ways (hey now...). $12.00

So including the bag, this month's value is $42.95. Great value and great items to close out my subscription. In case you forgot, or are new, Medusa's Makeup is also a vegan and cruelty free brand so if you'd like to explore that route, this isn't a terrible place to get started!

Ipsy September 2017 Review

Interested in trying out different beauty products? Then maybe you should check out Ipsy, a monthly makeup, hair, and skin care subscription service. For $10, you'll receive 4-5 sample (sometimes full) sized products to try. Check them out here: IPSY

I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones.

20170915_120039.jpg

This month's theme is "Like A Boss". I guess it's about empowerment or some shit. What the ever loving fuck, Ipsy? At least you didn't include that giant ass catalog telling us about Ipsy Cash again.

re:p Bio Fresh Mask: A collab with Soko Glam (a South Korean beauty and skin care company), this mask is supposed to be great for those with sensitive skin. I haven't opened it because I have a bunch of others to get through but I'm excited. My skin isn't super sensitive but it can get bitchy so I do enjoy trying these kinds of products. This 20 ml sample probably goes for around $10. (CF)

M.A.C. Strobe Cream in PinkLight: I've neither used nor purchased a MAC product before. Way too expensive and now that I'm paying attention, not cruelty free, so I will never purchase their stuff. I only swatched this to show you what it looks like in case you'd like to purchase it. Top pic is before the cream is full absorbed. Looks kinda like a white cream. But once you work it in, it give the skin a soft beautiful glow. Travel size is $12 so this 6 ml sample is about $2.40 (NCF)

Hanalei Papaya Enzyme Powder Cleanser: I've seen this kind of product popping up here and there and it is intriguing. I haven't used it yet because honestly I'm a little nervous that it'll be too harsh. I guess there's only one way to find out! Full size includes 14 packets so this 5 packet sample goes for about $1.40. (CF)

20170919_162628.jpg

Pacifica Coconut Blush Duo (Beaming and Tenderheart): Beautiful natural shades. The swatch in the middle is a combination of both. I think they all look beautiful (on my skin tone at least). This product isn't on the Pacifica website so I had to do some maths to figure out a value. Their matte face powder is 8g for $17. This blush duo is 14g so I figure it's worth around $30. (CF)

Luxie Rose Gold Medium Angled Shading Eye Brush 207: I'm never mad at getting brushes. And I've received Luxie ones before. They are super soft and work great. I've never had a problem with them shedding or the ferrules breaking or popping loose. Very nice brushes and not expensive either. Full size and goes for $12 (CF)

Except for the MAC cream, everything in here was cruelty free this month. Hooray! And the value was around $56, give or take a few dollars. Not bad at all.

Ipsy August 2017 Review

For those who don't know, Ipsy is a monthly beauty subscription service. For $10, you get 4-5 sample (sometimes full) sized hair, skin, and makeup products to try out each month. Check them out here: IPSY

I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones.

The theme this month is Good Vibes Only. And I'll tell you right now I don't get good vibes off this when they include an itty bitty theme card and a GIGANTIC catalog for their new Ipsy Cash program but do NOT include an info card on the products. In fact, it makes me furious. So you can afford to put together this huge catalog, on thick stock paper, glossy, full color, but you can't be bothered to tell me about the five little products? You and your theme can eat a bag of dicks, Ipsy.

Now, they may only be doing this GINORMOUS catalog once to introduce the program and that's cool. But if it shows up again next month, I'm gonna start throwing elbows.

The bag this month has some pretty colors on it (there were 3 versions created) though I would have preferred the one with more red because...red. But this is cool. It's also made of a thick vinyl so if you travel with spillable liquids, this might make a good containment system!

Crown Medium Face Contour Brush: I don't contour but the beauty of brushes is that almost all created can be multi-taskers (Alton Brown would be so happy). This one will probably be a great blush brush. And I am NEVER mad at getting brushes, especially ones so frickin' soft! This is full size and goes for $7 (CF perhaps - lots of conflicting info. These are synthetic brushes so they probably ARE CF but no guarantees)

Air Repair Skincare Super Hydrating Eye Cream: I've only used this once (after I mucked up an eye look and had to start over so the makeup wipe irritated my under eye). It's a good thickness, absorbed quickly, and moisturized really well. I'm not into under eye creams anymore but I do like them for before I apply concealer or eye makeup and my under eye is dry and irritated. Helps product go on much more smoothly. This sample of 5mls costs around $7.50 (CF according to their website but none of the other sites I check include them so...?)

Aurora Pro Color Corrector in Pistachio: I don't have a ton of redness on my face so these green correctors aren't that useful. But I tried it anyway on the little bit I have around my nose and cheeks. It ended up looking like a full-on Monet (gold star to anyone who knows what movie I stole that from BEFORE checking the link I provided). It looked really dry when I got up close in the mirror, though the product felt nice and creamy going on. Oh well. Their full sized concealer tubes go for $8 so this is perhaps half the size? Can't tell because there's no amount info on the website but it's a decent sized sample so let's go with $4. (No info on CF status anywhere)

Seraphine Botanicals Liquid Coal Waterproof Liquid Liner: I got the blush last month from this brand and I love it. This seems to be a nice black liquid liner that allows you to make a thin or thick line. It didn't bleed into the wrinkles on my skin either. I didn't make a wing with it but on the eyelids directly it didn't smudge or break down. And when it came time to remove it, no problem! I don't like waterproof stuff because it's so hard to get off (heh) but this was a breeze. This is full sized and goes for $22. (CF)

TheBalm Voyage Vol. 2 Highlighter in Kuwakaribisha: Ipsy says this is an eye shadow but TheBalm website includes this shade as their highlighter in the Voyage Vol 2 palette. So I'll go with TheBalm on this one. However, it does makes a great eye shadow! It's super pigmented and reflective as all fuck. Looks gorgeous on the eye as well as the face. I just wish the sample was bigger! I've valued this same sample size pan for their eye shadows in the past so I'll do the same for this highlighter and give it $1.50. (CF)

So give or take a few bucks the value of the bag is about $42. No too shabby! 

Ipsy July 2017 Review

Okay, I have to admit the bag really got me this month. So much so that I don't even care* how fucking useless the theme/card is all the time.

For those who don't know, Ipsy is a monthly beauty service. For $10 a month, you get 4-5 sample (sometimes full) sized beauty, skin, and hair products, along with a reusable makeup bag. Check them out here: IPSY

I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones.**

I think the theme had something to do with lazy summer days or some shit. I don't know who Gudetama is (another Internet sensation of which I'm completely unaware) but OMG look at that egg yolk's cute little butt! I literally (in the classic-and-should-be-the-only definition of the word) squealed with delight. It's a keeper for sure. Now, on to the products.

Ahava Mineral Hand Cream: I've received a few products from this brand before. While they've all been just okay, this hand cream is probably the nicest. It smells fantastic - but very floral. If that bothers you, you'll hate this. It's thin so it absorbs quickly but the skin feels silky afterwards, not greasy. Full size is $24. This travel sized tube is valued at $10. (NCF - some mixed info but no corroborating evidence of CF on any of the research sites I check)

IBY Crease Eye Shadow Brush: Inspired By You Beauty (pronounced I.B.Y.). This is supposed to be a domed shadow brush, great for blending out darker shadows on the eye. The cut on mine looks kinda wonky - not an even domed shape. Not sure if that's how it's supposed to be. It is very soft, synthetic, and 100% vegan. Full size valued at $12. (The brush is vegan so you have to think they're a cruelty free company but I can't find any info on their site or on any of the websites that compile CF company info.)

Ciate London Wonderwand Gel-Khol Hybrid Liner in Black: The claim is this has the pigmentation of a gel liner but the blendability of a khol pencil. And I would agree. I tried this on for shits and giggles without eye primer, over eye shadow, to see how it would work. It lasted longer that the eye shadow and didn't fade at all. The outer wing did lighten a little, which isn't surprising on my oily lids, but unless you were all up in my business, you never would have known. The brush is a titch scratchy but nothing terrible. I can't tell if this is full sized or not, but if not it's darn close. Full size is $18 so I'll call this item $15, just to be safe. (CF)

Seraphin Botanicals Lychee + Gold Healthy Glow Rose Gold Blush: (geez there's lot of long named shit this month). GORGINA blush color. Beautiful blend of peach and pink with a soft glow. Almost enough to forgo a highlighter. Almost...It kicks up a ton of powder but it's surprisingly not very pigmented, which I prefer. Easier to work with. This is full sized and goes for $14 (Vegan and CF)

Ofra Cosmetics Eyeshadow in Gold Rush: I've heard sooooo much about this brand and now I finally get to experience it for myself! Though I'm bored to tears with yet another warm universal gold/copper color, it is rather nice. I didn't use a primer to test it out and the color payoff was pretty dang good. And I didn't wet it, which is how it really shines, I guess, since it is a metallic. So I'm excited to play with it some more. Full size, 4g, is $12 so this 2g sample costs $6 (Vegan and CF)

I've come up with a $57 value this month. Holy schnikies. Ipsy hasn't had that good of a value for a while now. And I do actually like everything this month!

*That's a lie. I still care and still get pissy about it.

** I hate that I have to put this disclaimer in the post because people in general assume if you review something positively, it's because you're being paid to do it. Fucking weak.

Medusa's Makeup July 2017 Review

For those who may not know, Medusa's Makeup is a monthly subscription service. For $16, you'll get 4-5 full sized cruelty free and vegan beauty products of the indie brand, Medusa's Makeup. Check them out here: MEDUSA'S MAKEUP

I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones.

I love how MM switches up the package envelope. The flamingos are so cute! This month we also got a free beach bag (or looks like it could also be a reusable grocery bag). How fucking cool is that?

Lip Paint in "Cowgirl": FINALLY a lip color I will wear! Sure, it's a corpse nude but I much prefer that kind of look when I do really dark and/or dramatic eye makeup. This is the same formula as the others so it's super comfortable. It's a little streaky and when it dries down you can see it gives that "asshole" look to the lips (because the product won't stick to the inner most wet part of the lips, when you purse your lips, it looks like a butthole - I didn't coin the expression, dammit!). But I can work with this for sure! $12

Brow Wow Wow: There's only one brow product on their site and it's this brow definer and highlighter in one. The brown is a cool dark shade, which is fine. The highlight is gorgeous. It doesn't show up on camera but it has this almost white/blue duo-chrome to it. But it's also very soft and powdery, as you can see. $12

Angle Eyeliner Brush: Not sure I could use this for gel or liquid liner. It's a very soft and bendy brush. It would probably absorb too much liquid and not be stiff enough to stand up to gel. However, this will make a great eyebrow brush. I don't like the look of harsh, strong, drawn on brows. As you can see in the swatch, it makes a soft line of color, which is perfect for me. $8

Glitter in "Mystique": I wasn't blown away with the purple glitter last month (I loved the color and the name but the product itself ended up being kinda meh). I anticipate the same from this. But the color is stupendous - blue/green/yellow/purple. When all packed on, it is stunning. $8

According to the card, it's a $45 value this month (I guess they're counting the bag at a $5 value). Hooray!

Ipsy May 2017 Review

For those who may not know, Ipsy is a monthly beauty subscription. For $10 a month, you receive 4-5 sample (sometimes full sized) makeup, skin, and hair products. Check them out for yourself here: IPSY

(I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones)

The theme for this month is USELESS. And if you can believe it, the card is even smaller than last time and has even LESS information on it. What. The hell.

I have to admit, though, I kinda like the bag. It's a clear thick plastic that will probably be decent at holding liquids while traveling (NOTE: I've used this a couple of times now and yes, it's good so far). And who doesn't like ice cream? COMMIES, THAT'S WHO.

The little bottle of lotion was an extra I got for cashing in some points. My profile said the points would expire in February so I wanted to hurry up and use them before they disappeared. Soon after I redeemed this little baby, the pop up info told me that the remaining points actually don't expire until 2018. Son of a bitch. The lotion is...okay. Scent is a bit overpowering.

Okay. Now for the actual monthly products:

Global Beauty Care Charcoal Wash Off Mask - stung a little but sometimes that happens with a new mask. I love the twisty top that allows me to seal it back up so the rest of the product doesn't dry out! I can't find a lot of info on them so I'm not sure if they're CF. But I think this is full sized and goes for $5.

Pacifica Beauty Island Life Eye Shadow - I've received a few makeup items from this brand before. I really have enjoyed past eye shadows and these are just as gorgeous. Pretty pigmented but VERY soft so be careful when you want to finger (swatch) them. This palette is exclusive to Ipsy so I have no idea how much it's worth. (CF)

Royal & Langnickel Precision Angled Brush - I've heard a lot about this brand floating around the internets so I was excited to get one in my bag. But...I don't know what to do with it. I don't contour; it's too big for eyes; it's too small for blush. So, yeah. Again, can't find this exact brush on their site so I don't know the cost. But it's vegan so that makes it CF.

Manna Kadar Radiance Split Pan Highlighter/Bronzer Duo - While the sample is a little small to work with, the colors are beautiful. The bronzer will be a better eye shadow on me and the highlight is pretty. Again, can't find any damn info on sizes/amounts but I know it's not full  size (which is $21). It is CF though!

Mellow Cosmetics Creamy Matte Lipstick in Posh: I've never heard of this brand before so I'm glad I get to try something new! This lipstick is awesome. Gorgeous color that is more neutral/cool than warm, goes on smooth, and lasts quite a while without being drying. It's my favorite product this month! Mostly because I'm a lipstick whore. Full size and it's $13 (CF).

Well, I don't really have a value for the bag this month because there just isn't any info out there about some of the items. But I'm pretty sure it's over $10. Though I need to use the mask a few more times to be sure about whether or not it'll fry my face, I'm pretty happy with the rest of the items (even if I can't figure out price points).

Medusa's Makeup April 2017 Review

All righty. Moving into the second month of this subscription service! For those who don't know, MM is a monthly makeup subscription service. For $15.95, you'll get 3-5 full sized vegan and cruelty free makeup products. Check them out here: MEDUSA'S MAKEUP

I pay for this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones.

Even though I said I wouldn't, I had to include two extra packing pictures this month. The first is the padded envelope - which is different from last month. I'm not a polka dot kinda gal but how cute it that? Also they included a full color glossy pamphlet/catalog in the bag. Awesomesauce, party of one!

This month I got some great items!

Eyeliner Seal: This is basically a liquid that can transform any loose powder (I'll have to try it on a pressed one and let you know how that goes) into an eyeliner. It looks just like water but I know from past experience that plain water doesn't help the staying power in DIY eyeliner. The first time I used this (with the eye dust I got this month) was a disaster. Too much liquid. The second time was SO much better. See? I do have a learning curve, flat as it may be most of the time...Got more pigmentation and it lasted ALL DAMN DAY (though if I touched it, the eyeliner would smudge). And I only need a couple drops each use so this is going to last a loooong time.

Eye Dust in Helter Skelter: This loose pigment is a gorgeous blue black color. I think there's glitter in it but I can't be sure. Beautiful color, though maybe not knocking my socks off like last month's Wasabe. But I'm excited to play with it some more, maybe use my glitter glue to see what the color pay off will be.

L to R: Blush swatch; Helter Skelter with eyeliner seal; Helter Skelter dry swatch

L to R: Blush swatch; Helter Skelter with eyeliner seal; Helter Skelter dry swatch

Blush in Georgia Peach: HUGE pan size for this blush. Beautiful peach shade that needs a little bit of a light hand in application as it's pretty pigmented. The compact has a nice big mirror, too!

Eyeliner brush: Though the bristles on the brush aren't tapered or narrow enough for me to get a clean line, it does make short work of filling in a giant wing! Also works great if you're just wanting to get the color across your lash line and don't need to worry about it being super thin. Very soft, though if you use it to mix the powder and eyeliner seal, it soaks it all up and that's a pain in the ass. So live and learn!

A $36 value this month which is awesome because these products are going to last me a long time! Also, as a subscriber, I got a 15% off on-line order code AND another 10% off code in my email. AWESOME!

Ipsy April 2017 Review

Well, March came in like a lion this year, eh, midwesterners? Let's hope April has showers to bring May flowers and not too much more of Mother Nature's menopause specials. I don't know about the rest of you but our fence has almost been pulled out at least twice by all these wind storms!

Anyway, this post is about Ipsy. For those who may not know, Ipsy is a monthly subscription service where, for $10, you receive 4-5 sample (sometimes full) sized makeup, hair, and skin care products. Check them out for yourselves here: IPSY

I purchased this service with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones.

Have no idea what the theme is this month because I didn't bother to look at the card as it has NO useful info on it at all. Lemme go to the website. Hang on..."Sideshow". What the fuck is that supposed to mean? OMG so useless.

The bag itself is hilarious! I love the ticket shape, like what you'd get at a carnival or whatever. But the material is vinyl or something that feels like very tough stiff (*rowr*) rubber. Probably pretty durable, though. Meh. Let's get to the products.

Hikari Cosmetics Cream Pigment Eye Shadow: I believe the color is Honeydew. Looks like a frosty pink with a hint of peach behind it. It's beautiful. The texture is like a Colourpop shadow - feels like a cream but goes on like a powder. Using a brush is pretty much useless, though, unlike CP. Hardly any pigment pay off. But with a finger it's very nice. Could be used as a highlighter, too, because there's no glitter. Can't find an amount on the website for full size but I'm guessing this is a sample (because full size comes in a pot) but a decent sized sample. Let's call it half price and valued at $6.50. (CF)

Colourpop Creme Gel Pencil: You know how much I love CP. So I was excited for this product. The shade is Best O (oh my...) and is a deep burgundy. It looks kind of brown in the swatch below but on the eye it's much more reddish purple. Smooth and creamy, these are great eyeliners. HOWEVER - they are soft so break easily; I also had trouble getting the color to show up on top of the eye shadow. Had to work at it. Full size and is $5.00 (CF)

Touch in Sol No Poreblem! Primer: Interesting primer. It looks like a lotion. Feels like silicone. But once it absorbs, which it does FULLY, your skin just feels smooth and soft. It actually does look like it diminishes the appearance of pores. So cool. I only used it once but with just a translucent powder so I can't speak to it's ability to help makeup last longer. I'll let you know. Full size is $18 so this sample (the tube felt almost empty which is a bit of a rip off) is about $3. (CF)

Tried to do a quick look with the shadow and liner so forgive the messy brow powder and mascara.

Tried to do a quick look with the shadow and liner so forgive the messy brow powder and mascara.

Hanalei Aloe Soothing Gel: I do like aloe gel. Granted, this has aloe powder as it's EIGHTH ingredient but I'll still give it a shot. It does smell fresh and more like cucumbers than aloe but what the hell. Full size at 100g is $30 so this 10g sample is about $3.00 (CF)

Luxie Beauty Dreamcatcher Precision Foundation Brush 660: I am never mad at brushes. And I've received Luxie Beauty ones in the past and they are awesome. I don't use brushes for foundation but I'm sure I'll have no trouble finding another use for this one. Full size and is $23.00 (Vegan and CF)

I'm gonna round the numbers around and say this month was around a $40 value. I've had better. Think I've had worse. But I like everything in this bag AND they're all cruelty free so I'm all right with it!

Ipsy March 2017 Review

Well, it looks like there's a slight change in the Ipsy set up this month. Instead of a big card filled with useless platitudes and bullshit, it's now a tiny card with useless platitudes and bullshit. I'm wondering if the smaller card and larger bag are related in any way...

For those who may not know, Ipsy is a monthly subscription service. For $10 you receive 4-5 sample (sometimes full) sized products in a reusable makeup bag. Check them out for yourselves here: IPSY

(I pay for this with my own money and all opinions are my honest ones)

Not sure if the "Pretty is as pretty does" is the theme but who fucking cares anyway? The bag is larger than what's been sent in the past. Maybe a couple extra inches...and who doesn't like a couple extra inches, amirite? The bag feels like microfiber, is a pretty peach/pink color, and the design on the front is kinda cool. Have to say I'm digging this bag. It'll be great for travel. The products are:

Air Repair Skincare Complexion Boosting Moisturizer: I do like to try different moisturizers. Never heard of this but it touts being great to help repair damage and sooth dry skin. $21 for full size so this 10ml sample is about $3.50 (CF)

Cake Beauty Desserted Island Surpeme Body Mousse: Sometimes body and hand creams can be hit or miss. This feels very light but moisturizing. I'll let you know how it does but it smells heavenly (coconut and vanilla). Full size is $22 so this sample is $2.75. (CF)

Tarteist Quick Dry Matte Lip Paint: I can't tell if I got Rose or Delish. Both colors on line look the same but NOT what it looks like on me. It's a very warm terra cotta shade on my lips so I don't like it. The formula, however, does exactly what it says. It dries in seconds! It also doesn't feel drying, almost like there's nothing on your lips at all. It's totally transfer proof, until you eat something oily at least. Not sure about just water. But I'll see if anyone else wants this because I won't wear it. Full size is $20 so this 6ml sample is just over $3. (CF)

Doucce Freematic Eyeshadow in Marisa: The swatch doesn't really do this shade justice. It's got a bronze/pink shift to it (sort of like Urban Decay Fireball or Colourpop's Come and Get It). In the pan it looks rosy but not so much on the eyes. You can use this wet or dry depending on the look you want. I can't tell from their site but this looks like a full sized pan and it's worth $10. (CF)

Elizabeth Mott Blending Brush: LOOOOVE when they put in makeup brushes. And this one is so dang soft! I can't wait to use it. Full size and is worth $15. (CF)

All righty. This month's bag is worth just about $34. Not terrible, considering I'm kind of excited about all the products AND the bag is bigger than before. And everything is cruelty free. Whoop!