Best of 2014 – Face Makeup & Tools

Continuing on with the avalanche of annual favorites, today we have the Best in Face Makeup & Tools. Kind of a strange grouping but trust me, it works. J Since the Tools are pretty much all used with Face Makeup, it actually makes sense. So, now that we know what we’re waffling on about, let’s actually do it! J

Probably the best product in the face makeup category that I have tried in 2014 comes from IT Cosmetics and it is the Bye Bye Redness. I guess you’d call it a color-correcting concealer because it really shines for covering up redness, but it can really cover up any kind of imperfection with ease. It’s meant to be used under foundation since it is only available in one shade, but because my skin tone is pretty similar, I often wear it over foundation as well. I have to a bit careful with it because it is quite thick and can emphasize pores, but I find if it’s used sparingly in targeted areas it doesn’t become much of a problem. Since this past year has been filled with red, angriness on my face, the IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Redness has been a life saver (you can read more about it here)!

I’m going to switch things up a bit and move on to a tool! Not only that, it’s a new entrant into the brush realm. I’m talking about Flower Beauty’s new Lip Brush! I don’t actually use it for lipstick, but for concealer (usually the Bye Bye Redness). It’s a nice, dense small flat brush that works perfectly for covering up any pesky trouble spots. I’m torn about the handle because it is a rather cheap feeling plastic, but that also means it’s quite lightweight. Plus I really love the shape of the handle. It looks really gorgeous and it’s affordable as well! J Well done with the Lip Brush, Flower Beauty!

Another concealing tool that I have absolutely loved this year is simply called the Concealer Brush from ELF. This brush is ideal for blending concealer under the eyes. The size and shape is perfect for that area. The bristles are soft and splay out just enough to seamlessly blend without wiping away product. It’s genius – and it’s even more affordable than the Flower Brush. Run, don’t walk to grab the ELF Concealer Brush!

My last tool entry for the year is one that I use for pretty much anything and everything. I’ve used it for blending eye shadow, setting powder, applying both liquid and powder concealers, wiping away fall out. You name it, this brush can do it! It is the Setting Brush from Real Techniques. Again, an affordable brand too! JThis brush is a real powerhouse and is a must-have for anyone.

Getting back to face favorites, I have a few blushes to share. I tend to swap out blush rather frequently, but these formulas definitely deserve a mention. The first set of blushes I fell in love with over the Summer and they are the All-In-One Blushers from The Body Shop. My favorite shade is probably Guavabecause it’s just a nice, bright, pigmented matte pinky-coral. It’s a beautiful color and the formula meshes nicely with the skin. It also wears well and it definitely deserves more attention!

Next, there are the much-hyped Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes. These blushes have the most incredible silky smooth texture and on the skin, they just make the healthiest looking glow. There’s no glitter or shimmer, just luminous goodness. I really love Ethereal Glow for a blush topper that gives that “kissed by an angel” effect (you can read more of my thoughts here). I also love Mood Exposure, which is a surprisingly beautiful neutral plum that works with any look. I have it in the Blush Palette, which you can read more about here. The Ambient Lighting Blushes get a lot of hype, but it’s well deserved because they truly are beautiful.

A perennial blush favorite that needs inclusion this year are the NARS Blushes. Everyone raves about them and they definitely deserve it. The powders are soft and blendable, nicely pigmented and they wear well. In the Summer I could not put down the shade Torrid, which is a nice shimmering peach-leaning pink. Then in the Fall, Outlaw was never far from my reach. It’s a gorgeous almost duo-chrome shade of berry-plum laced with a golden sheen. It looks a bit scary swatched, but it is absolutely stunning on the cheeks! A common favorite among beauty lovers, the NARS Blushesdefinitely found a permanent place in my heart in 2014.

Finally I have my last face favorite. I’m not a big highlighter person, but this year I may have been converted…at least a little bit. JThe Cover FX Illuminator in Moonlight is just absolutely stunning! Depending on how it’s applied, it can look incredibly natural, or it can be built up for a more intense glow. It’s not glittery or sparkly, just a beautiful natural looking highlight. If you’re a bit frightened by highlighters, or just want one with a buildable natural finish, definitely check out the Cover FX Illuminator in Moonlight.

So that does it for my Face Makeup & Tools Favorites of 2014. See, they actually do make sense together! As with the last installment, my prior annual picks will be linked below as well as the other posts for this year. I hope you are enjoying them and I hope you have the strength to return for the next installment in a few days! J

5 Brushes I Use Every Day! – Real Techniques, IT Cosmetics, ELF, Anastasia & Royal & Langnickel

You know those brushes that you never give a second thought to? You know, the ones that you use all the time to the point that you just grab them out of habit? They’re the brushes that get the most love, but the least praise. Well, I literally use these five brushes everyday (that I’m wearing makeup at least!). Since they get so much love from me, I thought I should give them a little attention and share them with you!

I suppose I should go in the order that I use them, which means this Concealer Brush from ELF would be first! I don’t always use a brush for foundation, but I’ve discovered that I really like using a brush with most of my under eye concealers. This one from ELF is relatively new to me…it may be rather new period…but I absolutely adore it! It’s a nice fluffy brush so if nicely diffuses the concealer for a soft-focus finish. It also easily spreads product without absorbing it or moving it around too much. Best of all, it is nice and soft, which is a must under your eyes. I had been using another brush that I really liked the performance of before I found the ELF version, but it was really scratchy. The ELF one is the best I’ve found to date. The only thing I might change about it would be the width. It is a small brush, but it can be a little difficult to get into the inner corner of your eye with it. Not a deal breaker, but a minor tweak I would make.

Once I’m done with the concealer, I like to set it with a powder using the Real Techniques Setting Brush. This brush is actually fantastic for a number of things, but I typically find myself using it for setting under my eyes. Again, it’s soft and fluffy. It doesn’t place too much powder anywhere and it fits under the eye brilliantly. Since it tapers in to a bit of a point, it’s not too tricky to get into smaller areas like the inner corner either. I wouldn’t go trying to line my eyes with it, but it’s just perfect for under the eyes. I also just like the feel of the handle in my hand. Kind of random, but it’s a satisfying feeling! J
Next I probably tend to go for my blush. I absolutely adore the IT Cosmetics Heavenly Luxe French Boutique Blush Brush. IT Cosmetics just makes fantasticbrushes in general, but this one is suburb! It really places blush right on your cheeks and nowhere else. It’s so, sosoft that it almost doesn’t feel like it’s touching your skin. The synthetic bristles are not too dense, nor are they too loosely packed, so there is enough give to diffuse the color, but without washing things out so heavily that you need to apply your blush twelve times. It’s just absolutely divine and I love it! J
Moving on up to the eyebrows, I have another relatively new brush. I must say that I’m not sure that this specific brush is so fantastic as much as this kind of brush is just a necessity for my brows. The brush I’m currently using is from Anastasia Beverly Hills and it is the #12 Brush. It is quite a thin angled brush that is also quite densely packed. I find it would be perfect for either creating perfectly shaped brows, or, if you’re like me, for filling in relatively thin brows. I’m really not a stickler on these brushes, partly because I often use pencils for my brows when I’m in a rush, but the absolutely necessary part of this brush is the spoolie on the other end! I love brow brushes that include a spoolie and find it ridiculous when they don’t. This spoolie is on the firm side, which I found a bit jarring at first, but it somehow manages to be firm enough to groom brows as necessary without removing too much product. I’m not gonna lie, there’s nothing particularly unusual about this spoolie, but I definitely find a spoolie to be necessary for my brows no matter what I’m doing with them.

Finally I have a brush I picked up from IMATS a few years ago, but didn’t really start using until recently. It’s from Royal & Langnickel and I believe it’s probably just considered their Synthetic Flat Top Kabuki Brush. There’s no name on it, but that describes it perfectly. I use this with a setting powder when I’m completely done with all my makeup. It’s a little firmer than a lot of powder brushes that I have, so I feel like I can really press the powder into my skin nicely. It is still loose enough that it doesn’t make the powder cake or apply too heavily either. I also kind of like that it just has a stubby little bit of a handle because I feel like I have more control over the pressure I use and where I’m placing things. Definitely glad I picked this little guy up! J
And that gets us to five brushes that are definite must haves for me on days I wear makeup! As far as I know, all of these brushes are made with synthetic fibers and I think, with the exception of Royal & Lagnickel, that all of these companies only make synthetic brushes. I’m not 100% sure about Anastasia Beverly Hills or ELF, though they are both cruelty-free brands. I try to only buy synthetic brushes, but a lot of companies don’t state whether a brush is natural or synthetic so it can be difficult to tell. I’m getting on a tangent here. I hope you enjoyed this and found it useful. If you would like to see some more of my favorite brushes, check out this collab post of my 5 Favorite Brushes here. I would love to hear what kinds of application tools youuse everyday too! Leave a comment and let me know! J Thanks for stopping by!!! J

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.