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Favorite Concealers For Dark Circles

Today's post will be about my favorite concealers for the under-eye area. Concealing my under-eye area & dark circles has become routine for me. Admittedly I'm fortunate enough not to have awful dark circles, but they are still in need of some cover up...as I think most women can benefit from some color correction under the eyes. I'm super fussy about concealers under the eye. I can't stand if they crease, don't cover and aren't smooth enough too blend. Below are 3 concealers that I have found work great for me...

I always do my eye makeup first before any face makeup. Once I am done with the eyes, I will prime my under eye area and the rest of my face. I don't use silicone based primers on my face (they break me out), but a silicone base works excellent under my eyes. My favorite is the Too Faced Wrinkle Injection. I take a tiny little bit and smooth under my eyes. It doesn't ball up like some primers do, rather it sits perfectly until I'm ready to start concealing.

Once I am ready to start covering my dark circles, these are the 3 products I have found work the best and the ones I reach for the most...

MAC Pro Longwear Concealer 
 Pro Longwear Concealer
source: maccosmetics.com

This is the concealer I reach for if I need full coverage. Some days my dark circles are way worse (ie no sleep, not feeling well, etc) and need some major help. Pro Longwear is a thicker opaque formula that sets quick. It can be a little tricky at first to get used to (annoying pump) but it's quickly become something I use often. It covers everything from the face to the eyes extremely well. If you are someone who has really dark circles I think you might really like this one! I did a full blog post on this concealer in a past review if you would like more details (link here)

Origins Quick Hide
Quick, Hide™! Long-Wearing Concealer
source: origins.com

This is the product I reach for if I need a no fuss medium coverage concealer. It's creamy (not overly so) which makes it easy to work with & blend. It doesn't set right away so you will have plenty of time to work with it too. I haven't had any creasing with this either! 

Garnier Skin Renew Anti Dark Circle Eye Roller
Garnier - Skin Renew - Anti Dark Circle Eye Roller - Light/Medium
source: garnier.com

I've been using this one for awhile now. I just used it today and it actually sparked this post ha. This product is unique to the fact that it has a "depuffer" at the end of it...by this I mean that it has a cold tip that is supposed to reduce under eye puffiness & bags. I didn't notice a huge difference but it sure feels nice in the morning when you are still waking up! The product itself is thin but still creamy. I'd say this is more for someone who needs light to (maybe) medium coverage. I really like how this looks once applied and I feel like it almost makes my eyes look brighter and more awake. It's a must try in opinion. 

What are your favorite concealers for dark circles? 

Thanks for reading,

A Few Current Favorites...

Hi everyone! I'd thought I'd change it up again and feature a handful of products that I've really been into lately. I'm wondering if these shorter & quick reviews are more user friendly then my longer reviews. I'm planning to do a lot more of these style posts as I think they round up a lot more products and give you some ideas! I read a poll on one of my favorite blogs and it asked readers how they read blogs. Most people selected that they just skim and look at pictures & prefer to only read long reviews on single products if it was something they were interested. It really got me thinking...What do you think?

Anywho, here are some items I've really been into lately...

Clarins Intense Bronze Self Tanning Tint
SOURCE: Google Images
I've been using a sample of this from Sephora the past week. I've used it twice and love the results. It's lightweight and easy to work with. The texture is thin and spreads easily...a must with face self tanners. I read a rave review on this (here). I really value Natty's opinion and wanted to try it out myself. I LOVE it. The only thing I don't like about it is that it's not oil free....BUT I haven't had any breakouts yet. The ingredient list is short too. I plan on buying the full size of this once Christmas rolls around (I wish I would have discovered this before the VIB 20% off ended ugh). This is for sure on the way to becoming my new favorite face tanner!

Essie Miss Fancy Pants Nail Polish
SOURCE: This photo is not my own. Credit is given to Polish Insomniac. She has a great nail polish blog!

I love this shade. It's a wearable mix of gray & purple. It's just one of those easy to wear shades and I think it would work on a lot of skin tones. I like my neutrals so I couldn't pass this one up. My boyfriend, Jon, even complimented me on it! Haha. 

Neutrogena Healthy Volume Mascara
Left Photo: Mine & Right Photo: - credit given to Neutrogena.com

I've used this mascara for awhile now and I still love it. It's really hard to impress me with mascaras...I've really picky about everything with them. I wasn't digging the new CoverGirl Clump Crusher Lash Blast (not worth the hype in my opinion) and wanted to buy another mascara again. I switch off between using this and the original CG lash blast. These two are hands down my favorite. The neutrogena one never clumps, not a goop formula, and does as it promises - volume. This mascara needs some love as I don't think a lot of people gravitate to it!

YSL Rouge Volupte Lipstick in Sensual Silk
Photo Credit: Sephora.com

This lipstick is crazy expensive ($34!) and trust me I didn't want to pay full price. I waited until the Sephora VIB 20% sale came up. The price tag is ridiculous but the shade itself is perfect. The color, the texture and even the tube is really nice. I'll be honest and say I feel fancy when I put this on. It's a very wearable nude-pinkish shade. It doesn't wash me out and isn't too pink. This lipstick will be included in an upcoming post so stay tuned. For now, here's a great review of it here

Urban Decay 24/7 Pencil in Covet

This pencil was featured in my favorite Urban Decay products post back in October. Here's the link here. In the right photo Covet is the second from the bottom. It's a really pretty emerald green shade (ha my favorite color) I love putting a colored eyeliner on my lower lash line...I don't get crazy with color on my lids but I do like the "pop" I get when using this. I love the UD pencils...they are fantastic. If you don't want to pay the price tag you can always try the NYX Slide On Pencils. They are pretty similar and way cheaper.I personally like these better because I find that the NYX make my eyes itch...bummer. 

Blistex Medicated Lip Ointment
Photo Credit: Blistex

This lip product has been a savor for my lips. Every year like clockwork I get dry lips & chapped hands. It's really a nuance but with help from products like this I'll make it through the winter. This really does help with the dryness and they just feel "healthier" overall. It has a menthol feeling on lips but I like that. The tube is controllable and I really like the feeling on this product on my lips...there's something different about this lip product than others I tried. It's pretty cheap too...I want to say under $2 at Target! This will for sure be a staple in my purse!

Real Techniques Expert Face Brush

I did a detailed post raving about the Real Techniques brushes a few posts ago. Click here to read it for more details. These brushes have pretty much become my favorites for applying face makeup. They are great in so many ways. I've been using the expert face brush (left in photo) as my foundation brush with my Laura Mercier Silk Creme foundation (here's my review). It blends foundation seamlessly. This is currently my favorite foundation brush!

Hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving. Remember to enter my giveaway below...it's a thank you to you for reading! 

Thanks for reading,

Happy Thanksgiving Jewelry Giveaway!

Hi everyone! I hope you are all doing well! Today I will be doing my first giveaway! I was kindly contacted by Diane at BlueBirdBride to offer a jewelry giveaway to my readers. I was really excited because these necklaces are unique, pretty and something I would wear! I decided to do this giveaway the day before Thanksgiving as I am so grateful for all of the the blog friends I have made on here, and for all of you that take the time to read my posts. It really means a lot to me!

Here are some of jewelry pieces at her Etsy shop...

 love them!

Here are the details & rules...

  1. You may only enter 1 time (if you enter more than once you will be disqualified)
  2. You must be following my blog, Purple Shampoo via GFC or by email
  3. You must like BlueBirdBride on facebook. Link here
  4. Please check out BlueBirdBride on Etsy! Link here
  5. Not required but you can follow me instagram @ PurpleShampoo if you would like! I connect with readers through instagram & share previews for upcoming posts!
  6. Please leave a comment about what you are most thankful for this year. I'd love to hear!
Disclaimer: This giveaway will last for one week (November 21-November 28, 2012). Please make sure to review the above requirements for this giveaway. I will check to make sure the winner has completed the items listed above. The winner will be contacted within 48 hours via email. If you have any questions please email me at purpleshampooblog@gmail.com

Also, Diane at BlueBirdBride was kind enough to extend a coupon code to anyone who might be interested. The code is Fall2012. If you enter this code, you will have save 15% on your purchase!

Good luck to you all! Thank you again so much for your continued support!


MAC Pro Longwear Concealer - Review & Photos of NW25 and NC30

Hi all! Today's post will feature MAC Pro Longwear Concealer. This concealer has quickly become one of my favorite and most used products. I bought this concealer after seeing rave reviews of it on YouTube and other beauty blogs! I am so glad I picked this up...it's awesome!

What MAC says...
"A lightweight fluid concealer that provides medium to full coverage with a comfortable, natural matte finish. Colour-true formula lasts up to 15 hours. Helps conceal and correct the look of under-eye circles, and discolorations. Comes in a clear glass vial with a matte black pump"

This concealer retails for $18 at MAC. I have a Pro Card so I am fortunate to receive a generous discount. Even if I didn't have that discount, I would 100% still purchase this! Pro Longwear Concealer is housed on a small glass jar with a pump. I have to note that the pump on this concealer can be annoying. You have to be gentle on pressing it unless you want a ton of product. In my opinion it dispenses way too much product and it's tough because you can't really control it. I just find that I need to press ever so gently to get a smaller amount out. Since the product inside is so great I am willing to look past this flaw!

Beautysets - 1
This product itself is fantastic! The coverage is excellent and never looks cakey even though it's a thicker consistency. I find it very easy to blend and work with. It does dry down faster than most other foundations/concealer type products but I haven't had an issue with that. I do always wear primer before using an face makeup to help prep my skin for application...it really makes a different!

For NW25 application, I will pump the tiniest amount I can and then light pat on the skin under my eyes. I will then continue to pat until it starts to blend. I will then grab a small synthetic makeup brush to continue to blend it out. For NC30 application, I will pump again a tiny amount and place on my cheeks and nose (where I have a lot of redness!). I will then do the same steps as above. Once this is set I will take my foundation and put it over it. This doesn't have to be an everyday thing, but I really like how it turns out so I do it almost everyday! I find that using this concealer then my favorite foundation gives me that "perfect skin" look...who doesn't want that! For reference, my favorite foundation is Laura Mercier Silk Creme...click here for my review!

I've worn this product as concealer as well as an all over face foundation. It definitely gives you that flawless skin look. It hides imperfections really well (ie acne scars, redness, dark circles, other discoloration). I have been wearing these 2 shades everyday lately and they have become staples in my everyday makeup. I plan to write up an updated everyday face makeup post soon so I can show before and after pictures. I think before & afters really can show the proof on how well something works!

Why do I own two colors?
I currently own 2 different shades in 2 different color families (NW & NC). If you are not familiar with MAC coloring, NW runs more peachy toned and NC runs more yellow toned. I have different shades because I use the NW25 under my eyes and NC30 on my face. NC30 matches my skin perfectly as I have a lot of natural redness and yellow/golden undertones. The strong yellow stones really help cover up my redness on my cheeks. Green concealer will also help cover up redness too! NW25 is peachy so it's perfect for the undereye area. Since dark circles tend to be in the purple to blue tones a peachy shade will color correct (ie opposites on the color wheel). I was using the NC30 under my eyes for awhile but I wanted to try NW25 and that ended up working even better! 

FLASH Left Photo (Top: NW25 & Bottom: NC30)
DAYLIGHT Right Photo (Left: NC30 & Right: NW25)

MAC Pro Longwear has been an awesome find thanks to the online beauty community! If you are in the market for a full coverage concealer or an excellent under eye concealer, I really recommend giving this a look! Remember to stay tuned for an updated an everyday face makeup post soon...both of these will be in that post!

Thanks for reading,

Nars Laguna Bronzer - Review & Photos

 Today's post will be about the famous Nars Laguna bronzer. This is probably one of the most talked about bronzers of all time. I didn't own it or even swatch it until early this year. I kept telling myself I didn't need another bronzer, but I had a VIB 20% Sephora coupon so I used that to justify my purchase. Nars Laguna was featured in my Top 5 Favorite Bronzer post. Click here to read that post.

I'll admit when I first starting using this I wasn't wow'ed. Typically if something is super hyped I end up being disappointed because my expectations are so high. However, shortly after that phase I found myself reaching for Nars Laguna often. Since then, it's become a staple in my makeup collection. It's a product I use often and really does compliment many different looks.

The bronzer itself is a soft textured powder that blends well and I haven't had any issues with it coming off cakey. The swatch is lighter than it looks in the pan which was a little surprising at first. The swatch above is just a light finger swipe...typically I will build this up in several layers on my face. However, the color that it comes off is a warm golden bronze with subtle shimmer (don't worry it doesn't translate as overpowering shimmer at all). Also I want to note that it does have those warm tones but it doesn't appear orange on the skin as it does sometimes when you swatch it on your hand. That is why I always suggest trying it on your skin at the store! I have a lot of redness in my face and I don't think this product accentuates it at all. I would suggest Nars Laguna for light to medium skin tones as darker skintones I would recommend trying Nars Casino bronzer (as I don't think this would show up). The color can be built up but upon initial application, but remember this is not a dark bronzer!

For application I prefer to use a fluffy brush to light sweep over my cheeks. Sometimes I will use this above my contour or on the backs of my cheeks. It works well on it's own for a subtle glow or can be layered with other bronzers or blushes...which is typically how I use it. 

Nars Laguna is housed in a sleek black case with a large mirror and easy to open compact. I love how the Nars packaging looks. It's very simple and there is something I really like about that! It does have that "fancy" feeling to it too. There is 8 grams of product for $34. So it is pricey but I think you do get a lot of product and this will last a really long time. I know some people breeze through this but I haven't even made a dent yet and I use it a lot!

Overall, I would recommend this to those who are in the market for a nice luxury bronzer that is easy to work with and is a "wearable" bronze for light to medium skintones. If you find a lot of bronzers make you look orange then I think Nars Laguna could work for you! It won't give you that "overdone" bronzer or make you look really tan, but it will give your skin a warm glow. Give it a look next time you are at Sephora or the department stores! 

Thanks for reading,

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Real Techniques Face Brushes Review

Why do I love these brushes?
These brushes are quickly becoming my favorite face makeup tools to use! They are raved about in the beauty world and justifiably so! They are all extremely soft to the touch and blend makeup like a dream. They also don’t shed at all and I typically wash my face brushes once a week to deep clean them. These have held up well and look brand new once they have dried (love this). I also like that you can really see when the brushes need a bath. It helps me know they are 100% clean and good to go! Real Techniques brushes are also affordable. They range typically around the $8-10 range. In all honesty, they could probably charge more and I still would buy them…they are that good! I also want to make a special note about the handle on these brushes. They all stand up on their own and don’t knock down easily (see photo below). This makes it so convenient when you are doing your makeup and for storing them too! It’s a feature I haven’t seen with to any other brushes I own or on the market…it’s a really nice touch. Next time you are at Ulta give these a look! I highly recommend these to all.

Do brushes really make a difference?
YES! I am a firm believer that the outcome of your look is based on & dependent on the tools that you use. It doesn’t matter how much it costs…it matters the quality! I’m talking no cheap handles, no stiff or rough bristles, and no shedding. Obviously you can get away with using your fingers or a cheap brush every now and then…but honestly I notice a HUGE difference in my makeup application after using my favorite face brushes! Try these below and you can see for yourself…


Expert Face Brush:  $8.99 @ Ulta (left in photo)
"Ultra firm and broad for application and blending of cream or liquid foundation"
This is my newest addition to my Real Technique brush collection. Since I switch up which foundation I use almost daily, I wanted to have an extra foundation brush to use when my others were dirty. This one blends my foundation seamlessly and never leaves streaks. It’s one of those brushes that can help blend out thicker foundations that can go cakey if you use the wrong brush. If you are in the market for a new foundation brush, I would really recommend getting this! This brush will work with all textures of foundation…I have tried it with liquid (L’Oreal True Match, Givenchy Photo’Perfexion) and more creamy (Laura Mericer Silk Crème) and they all apply beautifully. If you are looking for a foundation brush for medium coverage to full coverage then you will really like this! The dense bristles allow for product layering and heavier application if desired.

Stippling Brush: $9.99 @ Ulta (right in photo)
“This dual-fiber brush is the trade secret for creating airbrushed, high-definition results with all types of makeup”

This brush was featured in older post of mine showcasing my favorite foundation brushes. It’s just one of those brushes that really does give you that airbrushed look with minimal effort. The bristles are duo-fibered so they don’t pick up too much foundation. There are ton of duo fibered and stippling brushes on the market, but this has been one of my favorites. It’s worked better than some of the really expensive ones! If you are looking for a foundation brush for light to medium coverage then you will really like this! You can sheer out the foundation or you can do multiple layers…either way works and it never get cakey!

Blush Brush: $8.99 @ Ulta (left in photo)
“Contour and define cheeks for flawlessly blended, high-definition results”
This brush is multi-purpose. Although it is a blush brush, I really like to use it for my loose setting powder. I definitely notice a difference in how the powder applies when using this VS other brushes. This brush seems to buff everything out so much better! As the name suggests, this works great for blush too. This is a really good brush option if you tend to have a heavy hand when applying blush and it looks overdone (or bright colors too)…the bristles prevent you from over applying. I would imagine this could work as a brush for highlighter too! As you can tell, this brush is versatile so it’s nice to have it in my collection.

Powder Brush: $9.99 @ Ulta (right in photo)
Evenly apply powders and mineral foundations for smooth, high-definition results”
This was my first Real Techniques brush purchase. I bought it to use for bronzer but I actually really like using it for my pressed face powder. It’s a large fluffy brush (but not too big) that helps fuse together foundation & powder. This brush is different than others I use for face powder because it doesn’t make my face cakey, never applies too much in one spot on my face (an issue I have with stiff cheap brushes…you probably know exactly what I mean!). I really enjoy using this brush with my Cargo Blu_Ray Pressed Powder. As I mentioned, this can work for bronzer too! This brush is a must for me because I don’t have anything like it. I was worried it would be too bulky but it’s not at all…it’s actually become a must-have beauty product for me. If you wear a full face of makeup then you will really like using this to set your makeup look.

These are just 4 of the Real Technique face brushes that I have in my personal makeup collection. You can find these and others at your local Ulta or online. The price is more than fair and the quality is outstanding…and that’s not a word I use often! These brushes have become staple items in my makeup collection and are used in conjunction with others every single day. If you are looking for new ways to apply face makeup then you have to check these outs as soon as possible! I know you won’t be disappointed!

Thanks for reading,

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