Becca Wild Honey

With their natural looks and glow-inducing products, Becca have been rocking my beauty-loving world lately.

While they definitely are best known for their gorgeous highlighters, I have been trying – and loving – one of the blushes from their original line-up called Wild Honey.

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Seeing as I am incredibly pale, I like my blushed to add a good dose of warmth to my face and Wild Honey does just that. It is a peachy, bronze-hued shade with a subtle amount of sheen that makes it look very natural and soft on the cheeks.

It is by now means as shimmery or glowy as their Shimmering Skin Perfector Blushes, but rather a subtle wash of color that works great for every day. It is however, very soft in texture and pretty pigmented, so be sure to use a light touch when applying this and work in layers to build up your desired shade.

I am so looking forward to wearing this all summer when my freckled make an appearance because the bronze shade will compliment them beautifully. Once again Becca can do no wrong in the cheek department.

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Drugstore Find: Catrice Glam & Doll Mascara

Isn’t it the best when you find a really good product at a really low price? Case in point – the Catrice Glam & Doll False Lashes Mascara.This is, once again, one for my European readers, but if you have a drugstore nearby that sells Catrice run – don’t walk – to pick up one of these.

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Drugstore mascaras are, in my opinion, completely on par with higher end offerings. There have only been a few luxury mascaras that might have contested this statement but for now, I am absolutely happy scouring the drugstore aisles.

Now, the Catrice Glam & Doll comes in a few different variations, all of them raved about. I picked up the lavender tube touting ‘Blackest False Lashes’. Since I am not one for a natural lash look, this, of course, spoke to me.

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The brush is a curved plastic comb that hugs the lashes beautifully while separating and elongating them. The result is a pretty, fanned out lash that looks defined and full without being spidery or over the top (at least to my standards). I’ve actually gotten a lot of compliments on my lashes since wearing this, which never happens to me!

And for less than 4 Euros, I am more than happy to pick up numerous tubes of this in the future. In the past, I have loved the Max Factor False Lash Effect, but the Catrice Glam & Doll has for sure taken over that number one spot.

Music Monday #17

This Music Monday, I wanted to put the spotlight on one of my new favorite artists – Kevin Garrett. If you have been following my monthly playlists closely, you will have seen his songs pop up in my most recent ones.

Kevin Garret’s songs beautifully atmospheric and heartfelt, often accompanied by pianos and soft but supple beats. If you are a fan of James Blake, Johnny Stimson, or even Bon Iver, be sure to check his music out.

It was his song Refuse that first caught my eye (or ears) in one of the Michalak’s March vlogs, but his EP Mellow Drama is gorgeously composed as well. So while Kevin is best known for his collaboration on Beyoncé’s Lemonade, I am waiting with bated breath for a new solo release of his.

Indeed Labs Hydraluron

A few years ago, when the serum craze got started throughout the beauty community, so many people were raving about the Indeed Labs Hydraluron Moisture Boosting Facial Serum.

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As always, I am a bit late to the party but I finally got my hands on one of these little tubes and I am ready to share my opinion. Formulated with Hyaluronic Acid, Hydraluron is supposed to help with moisture retention in the skin in order to reduce dehydration, dry patches and fine lines.

The gel serum itself is pretty basic, so I think it would be suitable for even the most sensitive of skins. What you have to be careful about, however, is the amount you apply to the skin. When using to much, things can get a bit sticky and uncomfortable, so I would recommend a pea-sized amount on a damp face for best results (I use a hydrating spray toner right beforehand and put the serum on before it sinks in).

What I noticed immediately with this is that whatever you put on afterwards goes onto the face incredibly smoothly and somehow seems to penetrate deeper into the skin. I usually use this in the mornings and my face stays nice and hydrated throughout the day, which is one of my main concerns. I also find that Hydraluron works much better under make-up than an oil as it doesn’t interfere with any other base products.

So while it is a pretty basic skincare product – there’s no scent or color to rope you in – I really think Hydraluron is a beautiful serum that lifts any product used afterwards. You can definitely use this on its own or even put on a more luxe hydrating serum or oil afterwards to get the most out of those products as well.

I also love the no-fuss packaging that enables you to use up every last drop of the product and with its high efficacy, I think the 30ml in here will last me a good while.

Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil Cruella

One thing that North American beauty retailers definitely have figured out much better than their European counterparts are deluxe samples. Chances are you get a cute little mini version of your favorite product rather than a flimsy sachet.

This is also how I got my hands on a mini Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella, a beautiful dark and vampy red.

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The pencil glides on nice and comfortable without being too matte or drying on first application. I noticed as well that the formula is a bit more sheer than I anticipated, so with a first swipe, you can get a pretty and wearable stain that is very day-appropriate.

The color can also be built upon a little bit to work the color up to a more bold dark red. Seeing as it is a lighter formula though, it is not as long-lasting as other, thicker matte offerings.

I am really glad to have been able to try out a smaller version of the Nars Velvet Matte Pencils, especially since I didn’t love the Satin version as much. This however, is such an easy matte in a gorgeous color that I am sure I will pick up a full size sometime soon. Cruella is a beautiful shade that I’m sure I will get a lot of use out of, but let me know if there are any other colors I need to check out from the line.

Bookshelf #10: On my list

For this Bookshelf, I thought I’d tell you about what’s currently sitting on my bedside table, waiting to be read.

I have the terrible habit of starting several books at a time, so there are a few novels that I’m a few chapters in already.

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First up, Alice Munro’s  Lives of Girls and Women. I picked a used copy of this up back in Canada, as I thought it might be fitting to read something from the country’s first female Nobel Prize winner. I love family stories and this seems like a beautiful coming of age story intertwined with an account of a whole family living in Ontaria, Canada.

Next, I am still chipping away at John Williams’ Butcher’s Crossing. This caught is not a new novel, but it caught my eye because I loved his book Stoner so much. Butcher’s Crossing is set at the frontier lines of 19th century America and since I am not the biggest fan of a western setting, it is a bit of a tough one to get into for me personally. Williams’ writing however, is as precise and immaculate as always, so while the subject matter might not be the most gripping, it is still a pleasure to read.

And finally, I picked up the highly buzzed about When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi. As an avid reader of A Cup of Jo, I had been following Paul’s story for a good while and it saddened me so much to hear about his passing. Joanna previewed a bit of his book and his writing is beautifully melodic and enticing, so I knew I needed to get my hands on this. The topic of his work (a cancer diagnosis at age 36) is as tough as it is omnipresent and I am looking forward to getting into it as soon as possible.

Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer

I can’t believe I haven’t blogged about this product before, but a quick search through my archives has shown that I never mentioned the Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer on here, so let’s go.

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This is my second one of these little travel sized primers (they do come in a big container as well, but that one is extortionate in price…) and while I do not particularly love the packaging, the product inside is absolutely gorgeous.

It is a soft, mineral based primer that evens out the skin and leaves it smooth and matte, ready for any base to go on after it. It is not at all heavy or leaves any residue, which is nice, but it sure does matte out the skin. I usually concentrate the primer on my slightly oilier t-zone and I find that my foundation does last a good while longer and goes on without skipping or accentuating pores, lines or flaky bits.

As I mentioned before, it is a pricey primer and for that, the packaging, while luxe, leaves a little to be desired. Granted, I haven’t tried the full size, but this smaller one feels a bit impractical. On my first container, the pump broke pretty quickly, so I had the scoop out the product, which didn’t exactly work great.

It is a testament to the product however, that I decided to repurchase anyway, so if you’re interested and have a few bucks to spare, do check this gorgeous base product out.