Product Reviews

get the REAL beauty scoop, and take inventory of products with exclusive reviews

Lipstick Queen

Born to Be Queen

Why be a princess when you can be a Lipstick Queen! I was introduced to Lipstick Queen at my local Ulta store and was beyond excited to test out of a few of their new Cupid’s Bow collection ($22 each).

Lipstick Queen

Why be a princess when you can be a Lipstick Queen! I was introduced to Lipstick Queen at my local Ulta store and was beyond excited to test out of a few of their new Cupid’s Bow collection ($22 each).  <Insert pics of products here> Fun fact! Clara Bow was America’s original “It Girl”, who inspired perfectly outlined, seductive lips. To this day, creating heart shaped, cupid’s bow lips is called “putting on a Clara Bow”. Yes, this will be on the test! <Insert pic of Clara Bow with caption: Clara pining for her Prince> Cupid’s Bow is a collection of 8 Jumbo Pencils that double up as both liner and lipstick. I am certainly more of a gloss girl myself, but I gave them a whirl. Both colors were super pigmented and glided on with no hassle. They also had staying power, but I would recommend wearing a gloss over them, as they felt a little dry on my lips. <Insert lip pics here with caption of color names under each: Ovid and Golden Arrow> Cupid’s Bow Ovid complements my tan skin for the summer months, but will also be a nice raspberry color for fall. Golden Arrow had a pinkish tint to it, while giving off the nude lip vibe. Definitely one I would wear on a regular basis and the safer of the two colors. I really want to get my hands on Lipstick Queen’s Frog Prince next. It is an emerald green lipstick that adjusts to your skin’s natural coloring and pH levels, transforming into a rosebud shade. Sounds magical!  Now go out there and rule the world, Lipstick Queens!

Fun fact! Clara Bow was America’s original “It Girl”, who inspired perfectly outlined, seductive lips. To this day, creating heart shaped, cupid’s bow lips is called “putting on a Clara Bow”. Yes, this will be on the test!

LipstickQueen

Cupid’s Bow is a collection of 8 Jumbo Pencils that double up as both liner and lipstick. I am certainly more of a gloss girl myself, but I gave them a whirl. Both colors were super pigmented and glided on with no hassle. They also had staying power, but I would recommend wearing a gloss over them, as they felt a little dry on my lips.

Lipstick Queen
Golden Arrow
Lipstick Queen
Ovid

Cupid’s Bow Ovid complements my tan skin for the summer months, but will also be a nice raspberry color for fall. Golden Arrow had a pinkish tint to it, while giving off the nude lip vibe. Definitely one I would wear on a regular basis and the safer of the two colors.

I really want to get my hands on Lipstick Queen’s Frog Prince next. It is an emerald green lipstick that adjusts to your skin’s natural coloring and pH levels, transforming into a rosebud shade. Sounds magical!

Now go out there and rule the world, Lipstick Queens!

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

MadHippie1

“Higher” Skincare with Hemp

Hemp kind of has a bad rap (unless you hail from Colorado, wink wink). Although hemp seeds come from Cannabis Sativa, the oil actually is rich in essential 3-6-9 fatty acids as well as antioxidants. It has properties that help replenish the skin, prevent premature aging, and maintain moisture balance.

mad hippie

So why not channel your inner free spirit with Mad Hippie’s Antioxidant Facial Oil ($24.99/select Whole Foods Markets)? This hydrating oil has been formulated with hemp seed oil, argan oil, goji, and camu camu without the harmful chemicals, parabens, or synthetic oils and fragrances. Made in the USA, it is also vegan with no animal testing!

mad hippie

Mad Hippie Facial Oil comes in a cute little medicine bottle complete with dropper. I chose to use it at night so my clean face could soak in all the goodness and chill vibes, man. Seriously though, the list of oils and extracts in the ingredients are impressive: Sunflower, pomegranate, cranberry, blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, and kiwi to name a few.

Upon using it for a few weeks, I will say I think my skin would benefit from this more in the winter time, as it is an oil, and oils are…well…oily! However, it was super hydrating, and I am sure after getting “baked” in the sun, Mad Hippie Oil is the product I will turn to. To find out more, go to www.madhippie.com.

Peace, love, and hydration!

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

BurtsBees

Latest and Greatest from Burt’s Bees

Oh happy day! Burt’s Bees has introduced new collections that will have you buzzing.

Burt's Bees

You know that old standby Burt’s Bees Beeswax chapstick you have tucked away in your purse? Burt’s Bees Squeezable Beeswax Lip Balm, ($3.99) is exactly like the original- only softer, smoother, and squeezable! I love how it gives just a little shine that the chapstick doesn’t provide, and the peppermint flavor leaves that signature tingle behind.

Burt's Bees

Burt’s has also come out with a collection of Sheer Body Lotions ($10). They are formulated with Safflower Oil Oleosomes, which have been clinically shown to moisturize skin instantly and leave it feeling soft and smooth. For those of you who have read my previous posts, I am a sucker for anything in a spray bottle! I had lots of fun spraying this lotion on my arms and legs…it’s the little things in life, I suppose.

Burt's Bees

Next, I’m dying to try Burt’s Bees Renewal Collection. This face care line helps reduce the look of lines and wrinkles while firming skin to appear smoother and more hydrated. And with white hibiscus and apple rejuvenating complex, I am sure it smells divine.

Find Burt’s Bees newest collections and www.burtsbees.com, and let us know what you think of them in the comments below!

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

 

mastey-cover

Mastey- Say Yes to Eco-Friendly Hair Care

As a beauty blogger, I have been dying to try using more eco-friendly products on my face, skin, and hair. Let’s be honest- I am not getting any younger, and I will try anything that doesn’t have harsh chemicals or additives that will aid in the aging process! Mastey has a whole line of eco-friendly hair care products, and I had the chance to try out their Color Protecting Shampoo and Conditioner.

mastey

I have fast growing hair, and before I know it, it reaches halfway down my back. Having a good shampoo and conditioner is very important to me. Mastey’s hair products are 100% vegan, rich in antioxidants, and are formulated with argan oil and olive oil. Best of all, they contain no ammonia, sodium chloride, parabens, synthetic dyes, and no PPD (more information on the negative effects of PPD is here).

I LOVED the pearlescent shine the shampoo had when I squeezed it into my hand.

Behold the shimmery beauty:

mastey mastey

Although the shampoo was nice, I really fell in love with the conditioner. You know when you go to the salon, and they use shampoos and conditioners that smell way better than anything you can ever buy in the store, and you’re like “what is this heavenly scent and why can’t I find it anywhere?” That is Mastey’s Color Protecting Conditioner. True story.

Interested in giving your over treated locks a break? Head over to www.mastey.com, and check out their whole line of haircare products. I will definitely be passing this on to my health conscious vegan friends!

Have you tried Mastey shampoo and conditioner before?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

june favorites

May and June Favorites 2015

Things have been a bit crazy lately with all the travel for my “real” job, so May slipped through my fingers before I could find the time to write up a favorites post. And considering I’m about to depart on yet another trip (an actual vacation this time) for the next two trips, I won’t have time to do a June favorites before July rolls around. The solution here? A really late May favorites and an early June favorites all rolled in to one. Woop, woop!

Being on the go for the past few months has meant that my makeup routine has been trimmed down. I don’t feel the need to overload my carry-on with excess palettes or break the TSA 3-1-1 rule with multiple liquid foundations.

And when I have been home, I’ve been prepping for vacation with sunless tanner, bright polish  and burn-free skin. And now that I’ve rambled for long enough, let’s get to the main event … my current beauty faves.

june favorites

Smashbox Photo Filter Powder Foundation | Benefit Roller Lash | Michael Kors Gold

Skin Authority Sunless Tanner | IT Cosmetics Brow Power

Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy in Vegas, Baby | Aveeno Sunscreen

What beauty products are you loving lately?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

sunbumcover

Time to Become a Sun Bum

Warm weather has arrived, and if you’re anything like me, sun, sand, and beaches are in your future! Sun Bum has a whole beauty line geared toward the dog days of summer, and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on them.

First up- Sun Bum Beach Formula Sea Spray ($14.99 at Ulta)

Sun Bum

What’s not to love about sea spray in a squirt bottle? While protecting hair from the elements, it gives hair extra body, waves, and texture for that “I just spent the day at the beach” look. When it comes to my hair, I am not always fond of a matte-finish, because it can tend to look a bit “witchy” due to the length. This Beach Formula Sea Spray definitely has a matte-finish hold, but I liked how it brought out my highlights and didn’t make my hair look too scraggly.

I sprayed it on towel-dried hair and gave it a good scrunch or two before letting it air dry. The spray itself was lightweight and created the strand separation and definition it claimed it would. I absolutely loved how purposely messy my beach waves looked, and I think they looked even better after sleeping on them.Sun Bum Sun Bum

In addition to the Sea Spray, I scored a few of Sun Bum’s Sunscreen Lip Balms ($3.99) in Mango, Coconut, and my personal fave Key Lime. Not only are they SPF 30, but they also contain aloe and vitamin E- a perfect combination to keep lips protected during sunny days. I have one stashed in each purse!

sun bum

Check out more Sun Bum products at trustthebum.com or head to Ulta.com to experience them for yourself!

Have you tried out Sun Bum products before?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

june empties

June Empties 2015

This is titled “June Empties,” but I took these photos in May … so do with that what you will. Just like in my last empties post, most of these are hair and skin care products. Apparently I haven’t been smothering my face in enough makeup this year. Woopsies.

Anywho, let’s take a gander of the products I’ve used up since March and discuss whether or not I’ll be repurchasing.

june empties

Dove Daily Moisture Conditioner – Dove has been my favorite drugstore shampoo/conditioner for a while now. It leaves my hair feeling healthy and shiny smooth. It never weighs down my tresses while still keeping them soft and luxurious. Repurchase? Already did.

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Wash – Aveeno is my go-to brand for body lotion. It seriously rocks my world, and now so does their body wash. It’s super affordable and leaves you feeling oh-so-touchable. Repurchase? Already did.

Meg 21 Moisturizing Toner – I loved that this toner contained Witch Hazel. Something about the smell and the way it feels on my skin is just lovely. Plus, I could feel this toner fighting any spots that would creep up on my skin. I didn’t repurchase yet cause I had another toner to use up, and that makes me sad.  Repurchase? When I run out of my other toner.

Fresh Seaberry Moisturizing Face Oil – This stuff is my jam. I have been using it since March of 2014. It’s ultra moisturizing and I just love the scent. It’s perfect to apply before bed but also light enough on your skin for morning too. Moral of the story – I use it ALL. THE. TIME.  Repurchase? Already did.

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer – I mean, what could I say about this that hasn’t already been said? It’s my staple concealer – perfect for any and all events/makeup needs and doesn’t cake in my under-eye lines.  Repurchase? Already did.

Sephora Triple Action Cleansing Water – This cleansing water is an amazing dupe for Bioderma. I use it every night before washing my face, and it is a boss at removing all my makeup. Yes, even eye makeup. It goes with me everywhere … even to the airport bathroom when I obsessively remove makeup before my flights.  Repurchase? Already did.

What goodies have you used up lately?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclaimer

april 2015 favorites

April Favorites: 2015

April has come and gone. It was a fabulous month; maybe the best so far in 2015. Seeing as it was my birthday month, that might be a slightly biased statement. Oh well.

Can you believe it took me 27 years to finally test out Make Up Forever HD Foundation? And I call myself a beauty blogger ….. *disappointed head shake.* While I normally reach for light coverage foundations and BB creams, I’ve been L-O-V-I-N-G this more heavy-duty number. I can’t put it down. And with that, let’s move onto the rest of my April favorites.

april 2015 favorites

Foundation | Rollerball Trio | Agave Lip Mask |  Foundation Brush | Floral Pants

And while we’re at it, let’s talk a walk down memory lane and look at my January, February and March favorites as well.

What were your favorites this month?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

PriyayaMD-e1430063142566

Spring Beauty Must-Have: Priyana MD DNA Repair

Spring is well underway, and what better time than now to prepare your skin for the upcoming warm weather? Priyana MD has recently launched a new product called Damage Control C + DNA Repair, and I was more than excited to give it a go.

PriyayaMD

Damage Control C + DNA Repair is a daily moisturizer that helps improve aging, sun-damaged skin by offering hydration and skin lightening benefits. This sounded perfect for me, as I have begun to notice lots of freckles (aka sun spots- gasp!) during the summer months. I’m also not crazy about the fine lines and wrinkles that appear around my eyes when I smile.

For the past month, I’ve paired the moisturizer with Priyana MD’s HylaSilk HA + NIA + Peptides Hydrating Serum and their VersaLift Eye Restore + Lifting Cream applying in the mornings and evenings. Although I’m not sure I’ve noticed a decrease in my sun spots, I have absolutely seen a difference in how hydrated my skin looks. The skin around my eyes feels firmer, and as they claim, lifted. And I didn’t realize how much my dark circles improved until I took a few shots of my eyes. Check out my makeup free face below.

PriyanaMDface

PriyanaMDeyes

I love the glow these products give my skin. The pictures above show what my skin looks like after applying all three following my shower. I am not usually a #makeupfree selfie kind of girl, but I was excited to share these with you to show how radiant my skin has become.

Although Priyana MD’s Damage Control C + DNA moisturizer may not be budget friendly for all (at $75), I have barely put a dent in it…and it works! I’d rather spend a little more on something that is long lasting and effective, to be honest. You can bet that this has become my new spring routine, and will continue to be essential through the summer months. What a great way to start the new season!

What is your Spring beauty must-have?

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure

KarelenCremeDryOils

My Spring Skin Care Regimen: Introducing Karelèn Products

I like to think of myself as a bit of a lotion connoisseur, so when I heard about the new brand, Karelèn, and their line of body butters, hand and body lotions, and dry oils, it was like I’d died and gone to heaven. Actually, my first thought was, “What is a dry oil and why haven’t I tried one yet?!”

KarelenCremeDryOils

KarelenCurlyTwirls

Receiving my goodies in the mail was much like opening my presents on Christmas morning. There was a lot of oohing and aahing. The body butters, lotions, and dry oils come in 13 fragrances, each with their own unique healing nutrients such as Vitamin E to neutralize free radicals, avocado rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and olive oil to promote cell growth.

I am a sucker for good packaging, and I loved the little pump on my Vivacious Vitamin E Hand & Body Crème. Not only did it make my skin feel silky smooth, it had a light and fresh fragrance that is perfect on these warmer sunny days.

…And can we talk about the dry oils? I love the idea of oils, but usually they are pretty messy and can leave stains on sheets and clothing. The two oils I’ve been using (Luscious Coconut and Olive All Over) go on like an oil, but rub in matte. They also smell divine- I have a small obsession with anything coconut! I was a little skeptical when the bottle said it was fast-drying, easily absorbed, and non-greasy, but the description was spot on. My only wish for these bottles is that they had spray nozzles to create a mist, rather than droplets of oil. Kind of like the old Australian Gold tanning oil sprays I used to use when I was a clueless sun worshipping high schooler.

Below you can see how matte the oil is after I rubbed it into my hand. No sun glare here!

KarelenDryOilHand

Karelèn also has a whole line of hair products called Curly Twirls. Although the weather has not become quite humid enough yet for me to wear my hair wavy, I have sprayed their Frizz Blitz Spritz with Argan Oil on my frizzies to smooth them down. I can’t wait to use the Curly Twirls Custard when it gets a little warmer. Both of these smell fantastic! On the left my frizzies are out in full force, and on the right they have been tamed by the Frizz Blitz Spritz. Nice and smooth and definitely not greasy looking!

KarelenFrizzBefore

KarelenFrizzAfter

The amazing thing about Karelèn products are that they are made in the U.S.A and are crafted with the earth’s finest essential oils. They contain no glycols, parabens, mineral oils, or petrolatum, and best of all are cruelty free. And for $8 each, they are a steal. If you want to check out their whole line, head over to their website at http://karelen.com.

Have you tried Dry Oils yet? Tell us in the comments below!

Photos: beautyXposé; Disclosure