Monday, March 21, 2016

The Best Drug Store Makeup Products!

I love makeup! It is such an amazing form of self expression. I really do believe it is an art. However, as much as I love makeup, most of it is so expensive! I am a poor college student and I definitely cannot afford to drop $50 for some mascara. And as good as high end makeup is, there is really no need to splurge for it when there are drug store products that work just as well. Some high end products are worth every penny, but too often you're only paying for a brand name. I do have to add a disclaimer that I do use a few high end makeup products because their quality just cannot be met in drug store products. I'll talk about this more specifically below.

For this post, I will be breaking my favorite drug store makeup products into three categories: face, eyes, and lips. All of the products listed are my personal favorites that I use on a daily basis (okay-- on a good day when I'm not too lazy to paint my face). As another disclaimer: this is not a sponsored post. I am not affiliated with any company mentioned. All products were bought with my own money.


Liquid Foundation: Maybelline Fit Me! Matte + Poreless
Liquid Concealer: Maybelline Fit Me! Concealer
Pressed Powder: Maybelline Fit Me! Pressed Powder
  • My number one tip for getting good coverage from drug store foundation products is to find one brand/product set and stick with that for your foundation, concealer, and powder. It makes it so much easier to match colors and create a natural look. Maybelline Fit Me! are some of my favorite foundation products I've used. I love the matte look of the foundation.
BB Cream: Revlon Photo Ready BB Cream with SPF 30
  • I like to have a BB Cream or some sort of Tinted Moisturizer with SPF in it to wear for outdoor activities, like swimming or hiking. Also, during the summer I like to go lighter with makeup and use something like this instead of a whole foundation routine.
Contour Powder: L'oreal Infallible Pro-Contour
Blush/Bronzer: ELF Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder
  • Contouring is the newest trend in makeup, so pretty recently I decided I needed to try it out. It was harder than I expected to find good contouring sets at the drug store. I started out using this ELF Blush/Bronzing Powder, but it is a bit too shimmery for a natural contour. This L'oreal contouring set is a dream. It is matte with just a little bit of shimmer in the highlight. And it comes with the perfect brush to apply your contour. I usually use the L'oreal set for my base contour and then I use the ELF set as a blush and bronzer to accentuate the contour. I love the way it turns out.
Face Primer: ELF Blemish Control & Poreless
  • All of ELF's face primers work amazing and are only $3. I have tried almost every single one and these are my favorite. The poreless really does smooth your skin and not show your pores and the blemish control really does smooth out pimples and treat them at the same time. There are also primers that specialize in illuminating, hydrating, etc. I recommend trying a few out to see which one is best for your skin type. 


Eyeshadow Pallets: Maybelline The Nudes and Covergirl Rose Nudes (small)
  • The Maybelline and Covergirl nude pallets that have come out recently have gotten amazing reviews across the board. Maybelline has The Nudes, Rock Nudes, and Blush Nudes, while Covergirl has TruNaked in Nudes, Goldens, and Roses. I wanted to get a Covergirl Pallet in Rose but all of the big pallets were sold out (more proof they're loved!) so I settled for one of the smaller rose tinted pallets. These pallets have been compared to the Urban Decay Naked pallets so I would give them a try!
Mascara: L'oreal Miss Manga and Maybelline Lash Sensational
  • Miss Manga is my favorite mascara I have ever used, and that is saying a lot because Too Faced Better Than Sex is practically my baby and one of the only high end makeup products I use. But Miss Manga is just it for me. It lengthens and curls and volumizes lashes all in one! I usually like to use two mascaras, and that is why I have Maybelline Lash Sensational. It thickens and darkens my lashes. It is a good product, but it's not my favorite because the brush has more of the flat bristle effect and I don't usually like that. Other than that, it is a good product and I'm glad I gave it a try even if it isn't the right fit for me.
Liquid Eyeliner: Maybelline Master Graphic
  • This is a good eyeliner pen for top liner and winged liner. It does have a pretty thick head which can be tricky to get used to, but it stays all day. Any of the Maybelline eyeliner pens are good, I've tried most of them.
Pencil Eyeliner: Maybelline Pencil Liner
  • I got this eyeliner when I bought my Nudes pallet, it came in a kit around the holidays. It is a brown color which I usually wouldn't wear (I tend to stick with black) but the color is very nice and the application is very smooth. It also has a blender at one end that I use often.
  • Here's where my first disclaimer comes in. I have tried a few drug store eyebrow products, but I have never found something that compares to the high end product I use now. I use Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow, which is very common. It isn't very expensive, I think I got mine for $15 and it has lasted me over a year (I know you're not "supposed" to use makeup products for over a year, but it still works like the first day I got it and I'm not just going to waste it!). However, I know there have been some drug store eyebrow products introduced recently that are receiving attention. Maybelline Jumbo Dipbrow Pencils as well as NYX Dipbrow have received many good reviews, so I would recommend trying those.
  • I've had the brushes I use for years and they were a gift so I'm not even sure where they're from. I also use some Forever 21 brushes that were also a gift. But, there are so many good options for makeup brushes at drugstores! Sonia Kashuk at Target has really good brushes, but their prices tend to be closer to high end prices unless you find a nice sale. ELF brushes are said to work really well and are priced at under $5 depending on the brush, so check those out!


Lipstick: Maybelline and Burt's Bees
  • As you can see by the picture, I really have a sweet spot for these Maybelline lipsticks with shiny lids. They come in many different types: matte, shimmery, etc. and there's so many different colors to choose from! They also feel like butter on your lips (soft... not greasy!). In this picture I have Siren in Scarlet, Ruby Star, Blissful Berry, and Deepest Cherry. This Burt's Bees Lipstick just came out and is 100% Natural and so moisturizing! Burt's Bees is an amazing company that does a lot of good in the world and always has quality natural moisturizing ingredients, so I had to give their new lipstick a try and I love it.
Lip Cream: NYX Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick
  • Lip creams that dry matte are crazy popular right now! I took awhile to research the best drug store products that fit this description and NYX was a favorite among reviewers. Lip creams usually dry out my lips and peel off weirdly for me, so I was a little nervous to try this, but each one is only $6 so I figured it was worth a shot. A friend recommended that I put on chapstick, let it sit, and then wipe it off before applying it. I did that for the first shade and it stayed on beautifully for hours. Later, I tried the other shade without the chapstick ritual and it definitely dried and peeled faster. So my verdict to you is that moisture is the key for these products!
Tinted Chapstick: Maybelline Baby Lips
  • I went through a phase in high school where I collected every single shade of these. I still have all of them and I love them! They are perfect for a day outside, at the beach or hiking, etc. Or if you just want to give your lips a break. They come in so many colors so you can definitely find one that suits you perfectly.

This is a very long in-depth post, but I really wanted to make sure to be honest in my descriptions! I hope this helps some of you out, whether you've been looking for a new drug store product or you already have your favorites. Obviously there are many other drug store products that are amazing, but these are my favorites that I actually use! Let me know in the comments what your favorite makeup products are! I'm always looking for an excuse to buy more makeup...

If you want to see an example of how I would use these products, a daily makeup routine of sorts, I would definitely be willing to give that type of post a try! I'm open for suggestions, compliments, criticism! I have a lot of exciting posts coming up so stay tuned. Subscribe with your email on the right side of the blog to be notified for new posts!

Thank you for reading!


Monday, March 14, 2016

How to have a Great Spring Break at Home!

Spring Break is coming up and as much as I know we all want to jet off to the Caribbean, sometimes (often) that is just not an option! I had my Spring Break this past week and I had my dreams of laying on the beach in California, but I really ended up laying on my parents' couch. I had my share of lazy afternoons, but I also made sure to get out and make the most of it!

For my FIRST tutorial on this blog, I am going to share some fun and inexpensive ways to make the most out of spending your Spring Break at home. I don't know if this really counts as a "tutorial" but I don't know what else I would call it... so we're going to stick with "tutorial" for now! Now without further ado, let's get Spring Breakin'!

1) Find a Festival or Carnival near you!

It's Festival Season! There are so many festivals or carnivals during this pretty time of year and we need to take advantage of it. The great thing about these events is they're often inexpensive or even free. You can never go wrong with a salted pretzel, caramel apple, or some shaved ice! Embrace going alone or make it a date! I went to a local St. Patrick's Day Festival with my mom and we shared a bunch of yummy food and shopped around a little bit. Festivals are some of my favorite events EVER, and I'm already looking forward to the next one.

2) Get in the water!

Let's be honest, everyone wants a chance to show off their new bathing suit and lounge in the sun during Spring Break, but we can't all afford a tropical vacation! Good news is, everyone has some type of water near them. Whether it's a lake, the beach, a creek, even a pool, getting into the water is a must for Spring Break. The beginning of my Spring Break was actually pretty chilly and stormy. I went to go cliff jumping (which is SUCH a rush!) but I wore a hoodie and didn't dare get into the water, so that's why this picture has such a bleak vibe. The lake was still a pretty blue so I didn't regret a thing!

3) Explore the outdoors!

I seem to be on a new hike every weekend and it is so fun! So many of us take for granted the beautiful environment we live in. This Spring Break, make an effort to look up the National Parks near you and venture into the great outdoors. There is so much to do: hiking, which is great for anyone; climbing, which you need a bit more experience and equipment for; and even camping, which can be a fun little getaway! Here's a confession: I love the outdoors, but I hate hiking. It goes along with my extreme dislike of walking. My favorite thing to do outdoors is exert myself with a short hike to a pretty place and then to just relax, enjoy my surroundings, and take some pictures. There's so much to do, you just have to get outside!


4) Pamper yourself!

Don't forget that Spring Break is a BREAK! Take some time out of your busy schedule to take a breath and pamper yourself. Pick up that book you've been meaning to read, paint your nails, make a homemade face mask, jam to Taylor Swift...! Do anything that is comforting but productive at the same time. Binge watching Netflix may sound relaxing, but you will feel so much better if you do something to take care of yourself!

 5) Go shopping!

I know, I know... shopping is not really mind blowing! Most of us would probably end up shopping even if it wasn't on the list. Here is my challenge for you. This Spring Break, seek out stores you wouldn't normally shop at or have otherwise looked over. I'm talking about the little thrift store in the same shopping center as your grocery store, the cultural marketplace on the other end of town, and the high end boutique you would never be able to afford. When you shop in places like those, it becomes less of an action and more of an experience.

I hope these ideas sound fun for you! These are all things I actually did on Spring Break and I ended up having a blast! If you are bored out of your mind this Spring Break, try one (or all) of these out. Comment down below if you do!

I have some fun post ideas in the works that I hope will be a hit. Stick around and check back often! Thank you for reading!