(Beauty) Products: Review 7 of 12


I’m no longer relying on my phone (my laziness) for photos anymore. The amount of phone photos on this blog in the last year has been obnoxious. Especially when I live surrounded by excellent camera equipment. So no more!

Anyway, here we are again, with my endless Birchbox subscription. I am quite literally a month behind reviewing these products. The next box should be at my door any day now and I am just getting to this post. But this time things will be a smidge different. I’ll talk about the new products, but I’m also going to share with you what I actually use. But we’ll get to that. First the box:


This body wash smells AMAZING. I am generally a bar soap person but this immediately made me feel like I was staying in a fancy hotel. And that feeling is what I’m going for in every aspect of my life. Does this product (any product – home decoration, wardrobe, soap, etc) make me feel like a fancy lady in a castle? Excellent!

The only issue is that I don’t feel like the body wash really does anything for me except smell divine. I am a dry skin person and I need gentle, moisturizing, natural soaps. I am a dainty flower and I must be treated as such! So as amazingly delicious smelling as this is, I’m not going to actually buy it. But you should! Also an excellent scent for men! I recommend it, even if I’m not willing to pay for it.


I cannot fully express to you how much I adore shampoo, conditioning, all things hair. So whenever I get a shampoo sample, it is with great joy. Unfortunately, this product was the exact opposite of the body wash. I didn’t even use it, when I opened the shampoo packet and poured it on my hand in the shower the smell was so medicinal, so after shave-y, so gross, that I quickly rinsed it off my hand and hoped the smell wouldn’t linger there. This shampoo/conditioner combo gets a big fat FAIL.


Supergoop! What a fun name. So, around the time I started experimenting with this box of products I also started using my brand new Smashbox BB cream (Finally!!). My thoughts on that will come a little later, but I have found that this is a great layered underneath the BB cream for additional sun protection and moisture. I really like this. It’s not oily and it gives me more sun protection than a 10 or 15 block which is in most daily moisturizers. It would be a great option for layering under mineral makeup as well (I think, it’s definitely worth a shot either way).

Once this runs out, I think I may actually buy some for semi-every day use. Two thumbs up.



An eye pencil! Yay!! Maybe I will now officially be able to do my beloved (yet elusive) cat eye! This eye pencil glided on amazingly well, shockingly well. I’m used to using darker powders for a smudgy (and rather forgiving) look, and this went on straight and true the very first swipe.

Unfortunately, I tried it about 10 minutes before I had to get the whole family in the car and off to daycare and work. I don’t know if I am entirely comfortable with the harshness of a black liner. It may also be that I am a moron and it looked terrible. It did kind of look ridiculous. I need someone to hold my hand and show me how to do it. But also maybe with a grey? I’m not sure. It just felt so brash and over the top.

The good/bad news is that it was a BITCH To come off. Holy hell. I had to scrub at it and apply multiple applications of coconut oil (my go-to for stubborn makeup removal now) all while Kamel was calling to me that, “Lauren! We’re going to be late!” I was two seconds away from running out the door with 1 eye all fucked up from a botched eye-liner removal. So yay long lasting? Just don’t fuck it up… But ultimately I just don’t feel like I’m ready for an undertaking like: Real person eyeliner.


Now then!! I wanted to talk to you about the products I actually do use. Things have changed quite a lot from when I started this experiment. I am, though it may not seem so with the above reviews, actually way more comfortable with makeup and products in general. So, everything above is everything I use fairly regularly. I wear this stuff to work, not just on the rare rare fancy occasion. A year ago I would wear mascara, maybe some powder and that’s it. And there is nothing wrong with that at all, that’s still what I wear sometimes, but the reason I wasn’t wearing anything else wasn’t because I didn’t want to – it was because I wasn’t comfortable with it. I’ve learned that makeup is fun, not scary. And that’s a big step for me.


So, first – the item I’ve been lusting after for quite awhile. The Smashbox BB Cream in very pasty. Actually, I think it is called “Light.”


It’s hilarious because it looks like a concealer in this picture, but it really isn’t. It does smooth out any darkness around my eyes, and generally evens out m complexion. I tend to have some unevenness, especially if I’m tired and this helps brighten me up a bit without being 1) complicated or 2) too heavy.

The first time I used it I definitely used too much. With BB/CC creams it really depends on the product how much you need to squeeze out. So for my face I need a little more than what is shown above and that’s it. I’ve also noticed that it can be a little drying for me, so using a light light light lotion, either blended in with the BB cream or as a base layer works best for me. And then if I am feeling ambitious I’ll finish it off with a multi-tonal powder, but I don’t find it overly necessary.

It’s pretty expensive and I don’t know if I like it more than the Olay one I had been using before, honestly. I might try the Garnier option that someone mentioned in comments just to compare. I mean, Smashbox clearly makes a good product, but I’m not interested in using it like a concealer, I just need something to rub around on my face to make me look a smidge better than I do when I roll out of bed. This does, but… I don’t know, I feel like it isn’t quite “everything I need in 1 bottle.” I do like it, but I’m not 100% there yet. Does anyone else have experience with Smashbox BB cream? Did it live up to your expectations?



This is an eye shadow sample my mom got in her free gift bag with purchse. I love it. I use it for a smoky look all of the time. Although – I don’t really know what to use the pink for. I worry it would make me look crazed. Thoughts? I’m assuming it is a highlighter for the crease of your eye but it intimidates me.



For Chistmas I asked for, basically, a bareMinerals starter kit and these eyeshadows were in it. I love the gold, I love the brown, they are perfect and I love love love me some bareMinerals.


Speaking of Christmas, I also got a Clinique face wash and lotion gift set. I use the face wash with my Clairsonic and it is the greatest. It smells really really good and is gentle on my sensitive skin and it does a fantastic job. Clinic lotion is classic. It can be a little heavy, but with my dry skin I’m cool with it. Plus I alternate with the BB cream, or I mix them together, or I go with the Supergoop, depending on the weather.

If you’re looking to upgrade your face wash/lotion routine (I was, I felt like it was time for some grownup shit), I highly recommend.


This is the greatest lip gloss/chapstick thingy ever. EVER!!!!!! And I don’t even like Rose scented stuff!


It has a little tint, which is very much welcome in my life, and it is incredibly smooth, not overly thick, and I just ordered 2 more kinds because this lives on my nightstand but I also want one for my desk at work and my purse. Ba. Bam. It’s happening. Anyone who lives chapstick as much as I do…. don’t even hesitate! Go buy this right now! It can be hard to find in real life but I found it here. Does anyone else use this? I know it can also be good for your hands, too.


Mascara! bareMinerals again. I love this because of its brush head. I find it a little clumpy so I’m still kind of bouncing around between a few, but this is my every day standard.


Look at that spiral. it’s just so cool to me, and it does a pretty good job, better than a standard brush head, that’s for sure. But the clumping. I just recently wiped it off and things have been better since this picture was taken but still… it can be kind of annoying.


And last, but not least, some Moxie lip gloss. I don’t use it that often because it wears off and I don’t feel like reapplying. But! I use it probably a few times a week. I just feel like the color and the application head and how long it lasts makes it a way superior lip gloss, and I have used some expensive damn lip glosses for weddings and stuff. This one kicks their butts. But I am also starting to feel like I want to move away from the gloss world and use a lip pencil with some of the rosebud stuff over the top of it, or just something a little longer lasting and a little more subtle.

To be honest, the whole lip stain thing I was trying to make happen a few months ago just never took off. It does dry out my lips and I don’t feel like I can maintain it while I’m at work. Suggestion? I’m kind of afraid of lipsticks, I worry they will be like the eye liner and overpower me and make me feel like a clown. Even though! I feel like they look amazing on 80% of women who wear them…. 20% not so much. Maybe I am just in the 20%…

So, what are your go-to every day products? What has changed for you in the last year in regards to your routine? Have you taken any risks? Have any of them been a success long enough to stick around? We little over half way through this product journey and I’m hoping I can still roll out a few more new discoveries in the months to come.

20 thoughts on “(Beauty) Products: Review 7 of 12”

  1. I actually use Lash Domination second. I am LOVING the L’oreal butterfly effect mascara, which I use first, then LD. Or just basic Lash Blast and then the LD really makes them stand out. I also find that I like most mascara better after a couple of weeks when it has time to dry out a little bit. They’re Real by Benefit is also quite good, again as a second layer.

  2. I use Benefit’s They’re Real mascara for special occasions (it seriously makes me look like i have movie star lashes), and the tried-and-true Maybelline Great Lash mascara for every day. Win!

    In terms of eyeliner, i love the Nars liquid pencil. My everyday look involves this eyeliner (which can go on really thin or really thick, and is really easy to control), mascara, sometimes a swipe of a highlighter on my brow bone and cheek bones, concealer under my eyes, and blush. On days where i’m feeling creative (or down in the dumps), i throw in some eyeshadow and lighten up on the highlighter/blush. Also, eyebrow powder!

    I think bareMinerals eyeshadow is one of the best things in the world, and would love to get a few more palletes – the one i currently use has a bronze, a dark purple, and a light, bright purple that i mix and match.

    What kind of tools do you use with your eyeshadow? I found that having the right brush makes a gigantic difference (well, brushES. i use 3-4).

    ….now i’m starting to realize i’m pretty high maintenance when it comes to makeup. yikes.

  3. Hey! I JUST started using Supergoop. Really liking it so far, plus it meets my hippy-dippy requirements. I’m using the “Save Face” moisturizer, but have been thinking of checking out that serum.

    Also, I may have those same exact bare minerals colors. It really is a good product.

    I too have been experimenting with the black eye liner cat-eye thing and finding it a) insanely time-consuming to do properly, b) rather harsh when I look in the mirror. But I’m thinking maybe the latter is just because I’m not used to it? I do want to keep practicing, as I’d like to have another Eye Option in my arsenal.

    1. I love supergoop TOO! I got some of their mineral-vitamin-infused sunscreen for a tropical trip – and I wanted to tell every single person there about it – smelled great, made my skin feel great, and had no chemical-ingredients – Win! I also received a small sample of their “CC-cream” or whatever, in my recent birch-box and I’ve tried it a few times, and really liked it. It’s a bit heavy for my taste, since I normally just use a physician’s formula multi-tonal face powder only, but I can use the supergoop underneath on days where i want more coverage and also more sunny days – like Lauren suggested. Overall I really like the supergoop brand.

      My daily routine: aveeno daily soft scrub face-wash (about 4 times a week, other days just 2-1 water to Dr. Bronners magic soap), oil of olay moisturizer, face powder, eyeliner (Lauren, I can attempt to show you my ways sometime!), under eye concealer (I like the fat sticks/pencil that you can use your finger to smudge but isn’t a liquid, right now mine is l’oreal), and Mascara (the one with the pink bottle, green cap, I swear by, and so do several friends! It’s perfect!).

      On the topic of lipstick: Clinique is my go to – I experiment with rando drugstore impulse buys, but my favorite colors are always clinique and the quality is so fantastic. I really think if you want to venture into that arena, you should go ask them for some advice at Nordys. It is a really creamy feeling, a bit like lip-gloss but with more color and staying-power, and doesn’t have that overpowering or ‘too-matt’e look that I see sometimes that looks weird. They have tons of subtle colors too, which would be a good starting point. I think you would like it! (ps: talk about lipstick cheerleader!)

  4. I’m so helpless with make-up. I have exactly one lipstick and one eye-shadow (and mascara) that I wear when I want look slightly more put together. Otherwise I do nothing other than wash my face with some soap. And while I’ve grown to accept that I will probably never be an everyday, makeup-for-work person, I would like to know more than I did as a 16-year-old standing in front of the drugstore makeup counter.

    Like, how does foundation work? I would like to find a foundation that tones down the bright pinkness of my cheeks so people stop saying, “Oh! It must be hot/cold out, you’re so pink!” and I have to say, “Sort of, but this is actually just the color of my face…” Or do I use concealer? What is the difference?

    Maybe I should watch some YouTube videos? Is there a community ed class I can take?

    1. I would HIGHLY recommend a BB/CC cream. I put it on just like lotion and is easy which is key! Concealor I feel like you need a sponge to apply it and you can get that too makeup-ed look. (But clearly, I am not a pro)

    2. I’m no makeup pro either, but I use a little powder foundation all over my face for mildly toning down sort of splotchy skin. Currently using the Make Up Forever pro finish which I am loving. Just put on a light layer (over and/or under moisturizer to keep your skin from getting dry) and it evens out skin coloring just a little without being a full coverage makeup look (although you can layer the foundation a lot to get more coverage). With this approach I can get the kind of makeup coverage that I can notice but my husband doesn’t notice (which is about as much as I’m comfortable with for every day), and it doesn’t take special skill or much time. If you have a sephora near you they have a color matching machine that will tell you what shade to get, and the brand has a pretty big range so it is a good bet you will find a color that works for you.

  5. For that eye shadow palette, I’d do the lightest on the inner corner of your eye and on your browbone, pink on the inner 2/3 of your eyelid (it’s probably actually a really flattering, lovely warm color on), the bronze in the crease and outer 1/3 of the eyelid, and a touch of the darkest along your lash line and the outer bit of your eyelid.

    Kind of like this, but you can totally use the same color for browbone and inner eye corner. http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NKj4X4EvFZY/UBNUY8a-mXI/AAAAAAAAD0k/ksvOnVy1naQ/s400/eye.png

  6. I don’t wear much makeup but for cleanser and other skin care I have been using Tatcha http://www.tatcha.com/ which is all natural and based on Japanese beauty principles. I have never had so many compliments on my skin and every product I have used has been super awesome.

  7. Having a very similar experience with the smash box BB cream but thought it was just my skin, not the cream! It’s drying and I hadn’t thought to mix it with alotion. Other BB creams I’ve used (the l’oreal one, I’m thinking) have been better. And cheaper. Hmmm. You’ve got me thinking now!!

  8. Thank you!! I thought maybe it was just my weird skin. But after using it straight on for a few days I noticed that it was actually highlighting dry spots. I am not really sold, especially as a repeat purchase.

    1. No, I won’t be buying it again either. I meant to mention too that I splurged on the YSL touché éclat under eye concealer stuff and it is AMAZING. totally worth it!

      1. I LOVE that stuff, but found that it ran out too quickly to make it worth the investment. I use benefit boi-ing as a spot concealer (especially under my eyes) and it is pretty awesome.

  9. Lauren, did you ever find underwear that didn’t “slip into the abyss?” I keep buying new kinds and having the same umm ass problem. Thanks for all the beauty advice!

    1. I need to do another post on it. I found these amazing no-slip underwear from Title Nine, and they are SO comfortable, full bottom underwear that are kind of silky but stay in place amazingly well. They are not as panty-line free though. I’ve been searching and searching and I need to do another little round up and discussion because i was just thinking about it this morning and I am still using my ON ones almost every single day. Old ratty underwear….

  10. i am so glad to hear that you have a clairsonic! i am in the midst of trying to choose between the mia and the mia 2, which is twice as expensive but has two settings… if you don’t mind me asking, which one do you own? i have sensitive skin too, so any advice would be so appreciated! 🙂

    1. I have the one where I can have it on either a normal setting or the higher setting. I always keep it on the higher setting, so I would definitely opt for options!

  11. I have many make up thoughts. (I know, I know, you’re shocked.) I really wish I lived in Seattle and could organise a girly Sephora trip with you!

    Eyeliner: it seems like you’d be more comfy with a softer colour? Sephora has wonderful eyeliners that are about $10 and I often use a silver from there, which sounds like it should be all fancy disco ball partyville but is actually – maybe it’s more like a gunmetal grey? It’s subtle, but it defines, is what I’m saying. I have a similar brown and green in that same line. I also have a Bare Minerals eyeliner in black that is kind of hard to get off but not like yours – eyeliner shouldn’t be that hard to get off! Craziness.

    The pink eyeshadow is for the crease and I promise when you use it with the other colours it doesn’t make you look crazed. I never ever would have used such a colour until it came in a colour pack a lot like yours, which I then used so consistently that it ran out entirely (which has never happened to me before, I get bored a lot) and now I miss it. Sadface. Maybe just give it a try one day?

    It’s nice to move into bright lipstick colours gradually like you’re doing – when I first started wearing lipstick I too felt like a crazed clown woman, and I found it hard. (God knows why I persisted.) But I’m glad I did! I would recommend Poppy King’s line of lipsticks that are designed to be like a beginner’s lipstick almost – a bit of colour but not too much but you can layer it up. For you, maybe this one? http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/lipstick-queen-jean-queen-lipstick/3348913 though that’s expensive I know. If not that, then one of the Clinique chubby sticks? They are quite sheer but have some colour (though I don’t own one myself, I have tried them – I just haven’t gotten around to buying one yet, because I have a trillionty lip products.)

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