It’s that time of the year again where sweater weather is upon us and all I want to do is stay inside with a warm cup of hot chocolate (and a cuddle buddy, but mine happens to be 480 miles away). Fall is one of my favorite seasons and like the leaves, I was ready to shed some of my old beauty products and welcome in some new brands. Out with the old, in with the new. Tis’ the season of transition, right?
As I’ve recently discovered, the Sephora in Georgetown is infinitely better than the one I had been shopping at before, so much so that it’s become a favorite location. There were so many brands I’d never seen at Sephora before (like BECCA Cosmetics, Guerlain, Jaclyn Hill, etc.), ABH’s entire line of matte lipsticks, and enough Too Faced products for everyone that I was just living. As you could imagine, it felt like passing through the pearly powdered gates of my own personal Heaven.
Ironically, most of my purchases were products that I carried over from my summer wish-list onto my autumn wish-list. I’ve been vibing natural-mattes lately, so a lot of products I bought were nude toned. Below you can find an overview of the items and some of my first impressions! I’ve been using these products solidly for a week now so I have a pretty good idea of their uses. My honest opinions can be found below.
$ – Less than $30
$$ – Between $20-$55
$$$ – 55+
Disclaimer: With every price point I list, I take into account the affordability of comparable products. Even if the item may fall under a $$$ category, but is affordably priced compared to other items of the same quality, I may still mark it with a $$.
BB TINTED TREATMENT PRIMER
by Tarte ($$)
If you happened to read my previous post about Tarte’s Hydrating Boost Gel Moisturizer, then you know how averse I used to be to Tarte products– but after buying their H2O boosting gel moisturizer, the brand slowly began to redeem itself in my eyes. Fast forward to the present, Tarte and I are once again on good terms.
I will say this: when I went into Sephora to get a tinted moisturizer, I initially had my sights set on Laura Mercier’s Tinted Moisturizer. But, as always, once I got into the store and began to sample products, I found a better alternative that suited my needs more than the product I initially went to buy. Something extraordinary that I’ve discovered when it comes to Tarte products are how precise the colors match to actual skin tones. Even with the foundation I didn’t end up liking (discussed here), the color match was on point, and this BB cream was no exception.
I love this particular moisturizer/primer because the BB cream applies smoothly, is buildable, and a little goes a long way (which is what one would hope for with such a small tube of product). That being said, I do wish the tube was slightly bigger for $36. Post-application, Tarte’s BB cream gives the same airbrushed look as a thin-coverage liquid foundation while still feeling weightless at the same time. I’ve integrated this product into my everyday beauty routine in place of foundation, and there is hardly a visible difference. Less makeup, same look? Count me in, always.
AMERICAN DOLL LIQUID LIPSTICK
by Anastasia Beverly Hills ($$)
Those of you who are loyal followers of my blog know that I absolutely adore Kylie Lipkits, and the primary reason I got this lipstick was because it has been cited on numerous blogs as a dupe for Kylie’s Mary Jo K lipkit and I was doing a Kylie inspired makeup look for my nightlife job. As a small aside, I prefer ABH’s formula for liquid lipsticks more than Kylie Cosmetics’, and at $21 per lipstick, ABH’s liquid lipsticks cost less than Kylie’s.
After trying American Doll on, I can confirm it is indeed a dupe (from what I’ve seen in photos, since I don’t have Mary Jo K), and looks nearly identical to Mary Jo K. American Doll is also cool toned, which makes for a flattering (and wearable) shade of red, and let’s not forget about ABH’s stellar packaging.
All in all, I’m never disappointed with ABH so let’s not even go there. I only rated this product an 8/10 because American Doll is obviously not a shade you can wear every single day.
SYNDEY & UNDRESSED
by Buxom ($$)
Despite the fact that these lippies are classified under different product lines (one is a lip foundation and one is a lipstick), I hardly noticed any differences in texture and feel. From my understanding, Undressed is from Buxom’s nude “lip foundation” line and can be used as a liner, underneath a gloss, or as a lip shade unto itself. Syndey is from Buxom’s regular lipstick line, and is slightly more moisturizing and pigmented than Undressed.
Color wise, I’d say that Syndey is a great pale pink to use for a flushed, just-bitten look and Undressed is great if you’re going for a nude lip or an full-lip lipliner. Overall, I use Syndey more for color and Undressed all over the lips as a nude ‘lipstick’.
However, I will say that I am thoroughly impressed with the thought put into Buxom’s lip foundation line. Not only did they market directly to the trend of nude lips (smart move, 4 for you Buxom), this is a product that has much more product than most other liners. In fact, I’d say this is the holy grail of lip liners. Compared to Huda Beauty’s lipliners which are supposedly intended to be used all over the lip (*cough* there’s hardly any product left after one use *cough*), Buxom packed an extra amount of lip product into this tube to make it worth the money spent.
As far as lipsticks go, these two products are definitely a worthwhile investment and I will probably end up buying more in the future. Buxom is highly underrated at the moment, but they’ve definitely moved themselves to the top of my own personal list, and I’d encourage anyone on the fence to try the brand out.
TERRACOTTA BRONZING POWDER
by Guerlain Paris ($$)
Another one of those brands whose existence I was unaware of prior to venturing to the Georgetown Sephora, I was so glad when I stumbled onto Guerlain’s line of bronzing powders. The first thing I said when I saw their bronzers sitting side by side were,”OH MY, THESE BEAUTIES, LOOK AT THEM!”
I will disclaim that the picture I took above doesn’t do the bronzer proper justice, and not only are the colors of Guerlain’s bronzers highly pigmented and matte– they all smell a little like butterscotch! Every time I open the package, I can’t help but crave a Caramel Macchiato from Starbucks.
Beyond that, there is very little residue with the powder, and it looks completely matte when applied to the face. I bought Terracotta (Guerlain’s lightest shade) because I was looking for a soft, brighting, buttery bronzer that wasn’t too overpowering. This is definitely a bronzer to use if you’re aiming for a natural look. The shade itself sits right in the middle of a highlight and bronzer, lifting the face while subtly defining the cheeks.
I hard been searching long and hard for the perfect bronzer and I wanted to jump for joy when I finally found it… would 10/10 recommend.
All in all, this is one of the only Sephora hauls I’ve done where I was completely in love with every single product that I bought. After trying these products out and using them extensively for a week now, I am almost certain they will be on my favorites list for a long time to come, and I use these daily.
QUESTION CORNER FOR Y-O-U (yes, you!):
Do tell– what are your beauty must have’s for the fall? If you’ve already done a haul, what would you say the product with the biggest letdown was? I know we all have those, and I’d be curious to see what yours are. Also if you’ve tried any of the items I’ve listed above, tell me what you think of them! I’d be curious to see if you felt the same way I did about them or not.
Thanks for stopping by! I love hearing from every one of you and reading your comments! xoxo