Ipsy Glambag Product Review: Meg Twin Nail Polish in Lovey Dovey (Limited Edition)

I enjoy experimenting with various nail colors. While I equally love just about every color on the spectrum, oftentimes I find myself gravitating towards nude colors. I like their versatility and simplicity. While I have a preference for brands like OPI, Orly and Essie, I am still open to trying other brands. Meg’s Twin Nail in Lovey Dovey came in my Ipsy Glambag this month which I was excited about. I Love the packaging, and how each tiny color snapped easily into one top.

The clear, twist off caps underneath are travel-friendly spill proof. Also, getting two colors (nude & grey) is a treat!  The brushes allowed easy application, so for those who aren’t really skilled at polishing his or her own nails, this is for you! The nude color suited my skin tone perfectly. Two coats of polish are sufficient and gave full coverage on my nails. The color dried quickly to a slightly glossy finish.

The nude color looks even more beautiful with a shiny top coat. I used Ciate London Gelology top coat which was in my February Glambag! I am sure any top coat would do. However,  the grey color wasn’t my favorite, just a bit harsh on my skin tone. But at $10 for two nail colors,  I’d definitely try the others. Worn alone or mixing and matching the colors is also fun because the colors are complementary. This is a limited edition, so hurry while they last!

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Ipsy Glambag Product Review: SKIN&CO Roma Truffle Therapy Face Toner

I am pretty much open to trying out new products, but new facial products make me a tad nervous. I have sensitive skin that can get easily irritated and break out at a moment’s notice. However, I was curious about SKIN&CO Roma’s Truffle Therapy face toner, because its’ something I have struggled with adding to my skincare regimen. I have read many other beauty blogs and articles stating its importance, but I still cannot get myself to be consistent with any particular toner.

Immediately I was excited at the mention of “truffles”.  I love truffle chocolates, truffle butter, and I associate anything truffle-related with luxury and good quality. So I knew this toner was going to do wonders to my skin. The packaging is good quality, something expected of a high end product. The top is gold, along with the lettering on bottle. The bottle is made of a hard plastic, which resembles glass at first glance. It is so important that luxury brands put time and effort into creating quality packaging.

The smell is quite pleasant, reminiscent of roses and citrus, but not overbearing. I applied the toner onto a cotton ball after using a variety of cleansers, from Murad’s Clarifying Cleanser to Pur-lisse’s 4-in1 Cleansing Milk. So it works well with a variety of other brands on the market. It made my skin feel clean and soft, carefully removing any residue and dead skin left behind after cleansing my face. After a week’s use, I felt my skin was noticeably soft, even, and clear. SKIN&CO Roma’s Truffle Therapy face toner retails for about $27 (Ulta & Nordstrom carry the brand), but I think it is worth the price. I am curious as to how effective the toner is when used with the entire SKIN&CO line and would be buying this once I run out.

 

Beyoncé Announces her Formation Scholars Program

Ok scholars now let’s get in formation.

In lieu of the one-year anniversary of the”Lemonade” album, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter has extended her humanitarian efforts on a collegiate capacity. Recently, Beyoncé’s official website  posted news of the newly minted Formation Scholars Program, suitably named after her hit song “Formation”. This program will award four recipients a scholarship to the following colleges or universities: Berklee College of MusicHoward UniversityParsons School of Design and Spelman College. The organization’s mission is to “encourage and support young women who are unafraid to think outside the box and are bold, creative, conscious and confident.” Scholarship candidates must be incoming, current, or graduate students who are studying music, arts, literature or African American Studies at the aforementioned colleges. Also, one recipient will be selected from each institution for the 2017-2018 academic year. Those who wish to apply should contact the participating schools for more details. Good luck to all those who apply!

Visit my original post for Level 21 Magazine’s blog here.

Ipsy Glambag Nov ’16 Review: Part 2

(for Part 1 of this lengthy review, click here). Let’s start with Tarte Maracuja Oil, because I have been eyeing this purple-bottled oil at Sephora for a long time, but the hefty $48 price tag was a repellent to my debit card. So, I was elated to see it in my Glambag! That first night I couldn’t wait to try it, a bit leery about using oil on my face during the day. It surprisingly left my face velvety smooth, and melted right onto my skin, since I was concerned that I would either break out or look greasy! I’ve tried a certain drugstore facial oil before, which ironically left my skin deprived of moisture, but Tarte was a pleasant surprise! I even apply some drops of this slightly nutty-smelling oil onto my beauty blender before I apply foundation, and it gives my face a fresh, dewy look. So, I definitely recommend this product and would buy a full-sized bottle.

The second item in my bag that I couldn’t wait to try was the Pur-lisse Balancing Moisturizer. Part of a facial care line created by former Power Rangers villain, actress Jennifer Yen, I was again concerned because I have sensitive skin and worried that this moisturizer would cause irritation.  Reading that it contains blue lotus, which is known for anti-inflammatory benefits, eased my mind. It also has white tea, known for anti-bacterial agents as well as Vitamin E which prevents premature aging. With that being said, it left my skin with a cool and lightly refreshed feeling, making my face supple and amazingly smooth, so much so, I utilized my Ipsy 30% discount towards a full-sized bottle. I will definitely continue to use this moisturizer, and intend on trying other Pur-lisse products.

Since I have tried a laundry list of mascaras before, with some, little, or no “wow factor”, so honestly I wasn’t really pressed to try  The Balm Black Mascara out. But, I was impressed with the wand, which had tiny bristles spaced apart perfectly so that each lash could get a fair share of mascara without clumping together. But…that’s it. This is the only item in my Glambag I could have honestly done without. Not a bad product, but not good enough to buy. I wouldn’t have known this have it not been in my bag. So, nothing lost nor gained.

I am normally a nude lip gal, so when I saw Color is Bae in Red Chili I was both thrilled and horrified! But then again, it is always good to try new things; after all, the things you are now comfortable with were once new to you too…So yeah. I tried it and loved it! First of all, I was delighted to find that this lippie was matte, which means it has staying power. It was also soft and didn’t sink into the lines of my lips, which is a plus, so I wouldn’t have that chapped look.

Finally…I tried Formula X Nail Color in Huntress, so if you cannot guess by the name, it is “huntress” green with flecks of gold, and with a hint of teal upon application. I adored how this color dried to a luster finish, although I added a top coat for extra shine, which wasn’t necessary. BUT….this nail color already chipped after less than 48 hours, so don’t expect your mani to last long. Mind you, I used a base coat, top coat, and two coats of nail color. So…this is a “no” for me. More like “Hell Naw, to the Naw Naw Naw”, but theres always that chance with nail polish, so overall I’d say my first Ipsy experience was overall pleasant. I appreciated the variety of products as I suggested in my questionnaire, so I know someone at Ipsy was attentive to my wants, and I look forward to my next Ipsy bag.

Ipsy Glambag Nov ’16 Review: Part 1

I love online shopping, and the highlight has been for me the anticipation that shopping  in a store cannot provide; it is more instant gratification, you grab, head to the register, then go. To me, there are some things that are just worth the ground shipping wait time, especially when it comes to beauty products. I obsess over them all, from hair to skin care and make up. I love them all equally! But just like most beauty lovers, I truly treasure cosmetics on a budget. So, I decided to gift myself a monthly subscription to Ipsy, which is an affordable $10.00/month (pre-sales tax). This way I could sample a combo of five luxury, mid-price, and/or drug store brands before I take the plunge to actually buy them.

So, I signed up, which was seemingly straight forward, but then I was asked to “share” my new status as an Ipsy subscriber via social media, in order to be removed from the waiting list! At first, I was a bit impatient with this step, but then quickly reminded myself that I usually share things I am passionate about with my relatives and friends, so I quickly got over it! Since I subscribed to Ipsy during the middle of October, I finally began receiving Ipsy emails: the first confirming that I would receive my first Glambag in November and what to expect on a monthly basis; the second was a “spoiler” email option to reveal which products I will receive by “sharing” my bag contents via Facebook or Twitter. I thought this was an excellent customer service strategy, since it did take the edge off of waiting.

I received my first Glambag, which was contained in this pink tin-foil packaging. Once opened, I see a palm-sized navy blue bag with gold cosmetic bottle and brush designs embossed on it. I was impressed with the bag’s unique design. Enclosed were my goodies, along with a card that had Ipsy’s monthly theme, Rockstarlet, along with suggestions on how to be interactive with social media while sampling the products. AT LAST, I took out my travel-friendly sized products, to my delight they were the following…drumroll, please…Tarte Maracuja Oil, Pur-Lisse Balancing Moisturizer, The Balm’s Mad Lash Black Mascara, Color is Bae Lip Lacquer in Red Chili, and Formula X’s Nail Color in Huntress. For part 2 of my experience with these products, click here.