Ok. August is over and I don’t know whether to feel slightly excited or rather sad. I love the summer months so much, but then there’s something kind of welcoming about autumn. So I’m torn between not wanting the warm, sunny weather to end – I hate the cold so so much! – and the new and exciting fall colors with enticing new beauty launches. But August is gone, so no use dwelling on that! Instead let’s wander back through my Cruelty Free Beauty Favorites of the month!

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It’s been a month of being reminded why I love things so much. That’s especially true of this first favorite – the Japonesque Luminous Foundation and the Cover FX Custom Cover Drops! I don’t know what it is about the Japonesque Foundation, but it just works with my skin. It doesn’t emphasize texture, it doesn’t get insanely shiny (kind of surprising actually!), it looks natural, it lasts pretty well, and it just plain looks good on my skin. That said, I feel like I need a bit more coverage than it provides – it’s maybe a light to light-medium coverage on its own – so I add in a few drops of the pigment-loaded Custom Cover Drops and it amps up the coverage without altering anything else! They are such a wonderful little creation. 🙂 My only complaint about the drops is the packaging. I have been so careful with the bottle (let’s face it, I’m rather anal with all of my makeup) and I still have pigment drops oozing out around the top every time I screw the cap back on. It frustrates me on so many levels! But back to the point! Together, these two create my dream team foundation. 🙂

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Another rediscovered love is the Sibu Beauty Seabuckthorn Balancing Facial Cleanser. I have raved about this before, but stopped using it briefly to test out a Foreo (one of the disposable vibrating silicone egg-like things that dies immediately) which required a cleanser with absolutely no scrubby texture to it. The Sibu does have a very gentle exfoliating feel to it so I pushed it aside…plus I ran out and my local Whole Foods stopped carrying it. 🙁 Once the Foreo died, I briefly tried something else but wasn’t terribly impressed. I felt the need to remind myself why I loved the Sibu so much, so I ordered it from VitaCost*. There’s just something about the Sibu Cleanser that kind of brightens the skin and makes it look alive and healthy. I noticed a difference almost immediately after switching back! This is just a fantastic cleanser that’s gentle and effective, plus I think it would work for pretty much any skin type.

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Sticking on the rediscovered train, I have the Urban Decay Afterglow 8-Hour Powder Blush in the shade “Rapture.” These blushes are really great. I haven’t really forgotten about them, just had forgotten how beautiful this shade is! I guess I’d call it a neutral slightly plummy-rose. It’s that kind of shade that just works with everything and for any situation. It is pigmented, blends well, stays put and it is just a fantastic formula in addition to a beautiful shade. If you haven’t tried one of the Urban Decay blushes, I highly recommend them (plus they will be a part of Ulta’s upcoming 21 Days of Beauty sale for half price!!!).

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I know I’ve mentioned these next items before, but I’m not sure I’ve claimed them as a favorite. Why? Clearly I’m stupid because they are incredible! What are “they?” The Milani Everyday Eyes Powder Eyeshadow Palettes in the shades “Bare Necessities” and “Earthy Elements.” These are just the perfect every day kind of palettes. The “Earthy Elements” palette consists of warm orange-toned neutrals that are completely wearable, while the “Bare Necessities” palette is more of a golden bronzy neutral palette. The selection of colors in each palette is great with a good mixture of matte and shimmer finishes. The shadows themselves are creamy and pigmented. I do always tap my brush off before applying them, so I never have a problem with fallout. I’m not sure they’re prone to it anyway, but I’d rather be safe than sorry. 🙂 They blend beautifully and I’m always happy with my eyeshadow when I use these palettes. Wonderful quality at a wonderful price (usually around $10)!

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Earlier in the month, I was actually reaching for the Tarte Tartelette In Bloom Clay Eyeshadow Palette for my eyes. Every time I use this palette, I seem to get compliments on my eye shadow. I feel like I rarely have anyone even mention my makeup, but something about this palette must do something magical. ? This palette consists of mainly matte shadows. Only three of the nine shades are shimmery. I don’t tend to love all matte looks and I can’t say I’ve tried creating one with this palette either, but again, I’m always happy with my shadow when I use it! The combination of shades is fantastic as you really do have a lighter shade that can be used on the brow bone, a medium shadow that works well for blending in the crease, another slightly deeper shade for deepening things, and a really deep shade that’s great for liner or with a really light hand for just a touch more depth. It’s also laid out nicely so that you can just go across in each 4-shadow row for a complete eye look, or you can mix and match like I usually do. All of that said, some of these shadows are on the soft side and are prone to fallout even after I tap my brush off. It’s not terrible, but consider yourself warned! 😉 Again, high quality shadows in gorgeous shades (plus stunning packaging!), though this has a much higher price tag at $45.

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Moving back to the affordable end of the scale, my go-to mascara has been the Essence Plump No Clump Mascara. It’s absolutely fantastic for adding some volume without clumping – appropriate name I suppose. 😉 It also adds decent length as well and it is really black! It’s a surprisingly good mascara at a surprisingly affordable price (around $5 I believe). I haven’t experienced smudging or flaking or anything else unsavory even in the insane humidity we’ve had in August. It’s the kind of mascara that works for a little more than natural looking-lashes with one coat, but then a second coat makes a much more dramatic lash. It’s almost like having all of the best worlds in one! 🙂 It’s not as dramatic as something like the Too Faced Better Than Sex, but it’s more like an everyday dramatic mascara if that makes any sense. Whatever you want to call it, I love it! ?

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Last but not least, I have some highlighters from a relatively small company called Looxi Beauty. I placed an order in early August and have been testing things out ever since! 🙂 I am absolutely in love with their Highlighter in “Ever After.” It is the coolest duo-chrome shade, though I’ve discovered that in can look a bit like a bruise in some light. I know, not a look anyone is after, but I still love it so much! It’s absolutely gorgeous in other lights. It is described as a beige with violet reflects. It’s obviously the violet that creates that bruise-like glow, but it can also look kind of silvery-beige. Whatever it is, I love it and I love it’s shifting colors! 🙂 If that’s not your thing, I also adore the shade “Stripped.” I believe this is meant to dupe one of the Pat McGrath highlighters. I don’t care what the inspiration was, it’s absolutely gorgeous! This one is described as an iridescent pink and man does it deliver! When the light hits your cheeks it literally looks like they’re glowing pink. It is so pretty! I think everyone needs this highlighter! I wouldn’t call it a pink highlighter – it’s almost more of a white – but it really does have an iridescent pink shift that is just other-worldly. I highly recommend checking out Looxi Beauty and at least one of their unusual and incredible highlighters! 🙂

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It’s been an interesting month, but certainly a good one on the makeup front. 🙂 I love rediscovering why I love certain things. Finding new things is exciting as well, but it’s nice to see what has stood the test of time and I’ve gone back to over and over again. This month has been a nice blend of the two! I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the loves of August and I’d love to know what you’ve been loving as well! I look forward to seeing you again soon, and thank you so much for sticking with me during this recent half-hiatus.

*Referral Link – I receive a dollar amount to use on the site if you use this link.

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