Wednesday, July 24, 2013

theBalm InStain Blushes - Review and Swatches

  Disclaimer: All products were purchased by me, and all opinions are my own.

I have been back home for over a week now, and I still don't want to do much of anything. I have spent a lot of time reading and a lot of time sleeping. Oh yeah...I also watched the Syfy movie Sharknado last night with a friend. It was so horrifically awful that it was amazing. I hadn't laughed so hard in a long time.

In the meantime, my blog has been mocking me with my lack of motivation. I have a bunch of pictures downloaded onto my computer - some have been edited, some haven't - and a pile of products in my new product bin. Getting caught up isn't really an option at this point, but making progress is.

This is one of those reviews that has been waiting around for a while. It's another purchase I made during theBalm's 50% off everything sale. I wanted to pick up the entire collection of InStain blushes, but I restrained myself and only picked up two of them.Their regular retail price is $22, so I ended up paying $11 each for mine.


theBalm InStain blush in Argyle
theBalm InStain blush in Argyle
theBalm InStain blush in Toile
theBalm InStain blush in Toile

theBalm always seems to do a fantastic job with their packaging. It's cute and quirky. The exterior of the packaging looks like a magazine from the 1920s. The interior design around the blush pan matches the name of the blush color. The Argyle blush has an argyle pattern surrounding it; the Toile blush has a toile pattern surrounding it. The packaging itself is a sturdy cardboard with a magnetic closure.


theBalm InStain blush in Argyle
theBalm InStain blush in Argyle
Argyle is a much brighter pink than my pictures (and the pictures on theBalm's website) show. It's a slightly warm, hot pink shade that is completely matte.

theBalm InStain blush in Toile
theBalm InStain blush in Toile
 Toile is also brighter than my pictures show. It is a matte, coral pink shade.

Both blushes are highly pigmented. Do they stain? Sort of. With the swatches on my arm, I could get a little bit to come off with a dry towel. I could get even more off with just water. However, in order to completely get rid of the swatches, I had to use soap and water. On my cheeks, they last on my and look fresh ALL day. The one downside that I've noticed with these is their "staining" aspect makes then a little challenging to blend. It's practically impossible for me to NOT over-apply blush, and I rely on a kabuki brush to blend them out after I apply them. These blushes don't want to blend out as easily as other blushes in my collection.

Final Thoughts 

These are really good quality blushes. If you have trouble with getting blushes to stay, they are definitely worth checking out. There are 6 shades in the collection, and the shades have a broad enough range that there should be a shade that appeals to everyone. I'm happy to have Argyle and Toile in my collection. I may or may not pick up any more in the future. If you are thinking about picking these up, I would suggest waiting until theBalm goes on sale on Hautelook. I haven't seen the InStain blushes show up on there, but since most of theBalm's regular line goes on sale there regularly, I can see them listing these blushes there as well.

Have you tried theBalm's InStain blushes? Do you have the tendency to over-apply blushes like me?

Disclaimer: All products were purchased by me, and all opinions are my own.

Friday, July 19, 2013

My Minimal Makeup Look

Disclaimer: All of the products mentioned in this post were purchased by me. All opinions are my own. 

Well...the summer school I was teaching ended on July 3, and I had big plans for getting a lot of things done at home and getting caught up on blog posts. Sadly, plans changed.

My mom let me know that Friday that my brother was back in the hospital for an issue that he's been having regularly for months. On Saturday morning she asked me to come home to help out because she's not getting around very well because of a broken ankle. I was happy that she was willing to ask for help (it's hard for her to do), and was glad to help out.

However, my trip home ended up up lasting over a week, and most of it was spent sitting in two different hospitals. I didn't really care about looking good, but I also didn't want to look awful either. It gave me the idea to share with all of you my bare minimum when it comes to makeup. These were the only products I used for most of my trip home:

Clearly, concealer is important to me.

bareMinerals Correcting Concealer SPF 20 in Light 1 ($20) - I've got several correcting concealers in my collection, but this is the one I chose to bring with me. I really like the light, almost gel-like texture. I have used a brush for it, but lately, I've just been using my fingers to slick it on. As you can see, I just hit pan, and I will probably end up repurchasing it when I finish it off.

Silk Naturals Sleep in a Jar Light Peach ($6.50) - I consider this a holy grail item. I've gone through several jars. I applied this after all of the other products except my blush. It acts as my last defense against my dark circles.

Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil in CIA ($19) - If you are familiar with Urban Decay products, you might notice that this is the old formula. I bought it when it was on clearance. I have really been loving the ease of this concealer lately. It is creamy and has pretty good coverage. The pencil style makes it easy to dab it on where I want it. This is another product that I'll probably repurchase after I finish the one I have.

Meow Pampered Puss Foundation in Inquisitive Siamese ($25.95) - The price of this mineral foundation might seem a little bit high, but I want to point out that the size of this jar is HUGE. It's an 85g jar with approximately 22-30g of product, so it will last a really long time. If you aren't familiar with Meow Cosmetics, they have an impressive selection of mineral foundations. They have three different formulas with 86 shades. I used this for a long time as my everyday foundation. Since my particular formulation has lighter coverage, I also regularly use it as setting powder with a liquid foundation.

Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in Exposed ($26) - These blushes are another favorite of mine. I chose to take this particular shade with me because it is such an easy, natural-looking shade to use. I didn't have to think about it too much when I was getting ready to run out the door.

That was my look. I know a lot of you are probably gasping that I didn't use mascara. I know that's an everyday thing for most women. I personally think mascara looks strange on me if I don't do any other eye makeup. I should also point out that there was always a lip balm in my pocket. I never go anywhere without a lip balm.

In case you were wondering, my brother is doing better and is back at home. They did a different procedure that should help him manage his issue better. 

When you are in a huge rush, what products are must-have items for you?

Disclaimer: All of the products mentioned in this post were purchased by me. All opinions are my own.