Sunday, January 31, 2021

My First Post of 2021: My ULTA Roundup!

 Hey Everyone!  This is my first post of 2021!

So allow me to start with "Happy New Year!"  I hope your 2021 has been a good year so far.  As Nina Simone sang: "It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life for me, and I'm feeling fine."  While I feel we have the freedom to make this decision for our lives on any random day of the year, there's nothing like the social conditioning to self-love agreements starting the first of the year.  

So let me jump right in.  I want to talk beauty (sorry to any guys tuning in), but a New Year is a great time for ladies to find a fresh new look.  And, let's be honest, with everything going on in the world right now, a lady wants to look her best during a Revolution, no?  You know me...sharing is caring.

I always wanted to do one of these round up pics.
*manually checks off blogger bucket list*

I don't know about all other women reading this post, but when I run out of beauty products or cosmetics, it happens ALL at once!  Mascara, concealer, moisturizer, you name it!  Except for shampoo and conditioner.  I'm not sure why I always seem to have plenty of conditioner but always chronically low on shampoo.  As Milton would lisp in the movie "Office Space": "But ratio of conditioner to shampoo is too big!" 

For YEARS I had been using a cosmetic base by Sothy's (a French company and a product line I truly adore).  It was recommended to me by an aesthetician in South Carolina and used to put some on after my facials.  It lays on the skin beautifully, and what I mean by that is, you can't see that you're wearing any.  But, the one thing I didn't like about their product and pump is that you can't really see when you're nearing the end.  So you end up muscling the bottle open, taking scissors to the inside sack and q-tipping the rest of the product out.  Also, you have to order it online with shipping fees, and sometimes that can be a pain.  I was in the habit of ordering two at a time just in case I ran out.

Luckily I have an ULTA in such close proximity that I can ride my bike to (when there's warmer weather.)  On my recent trip, I was looking for a good all over base that didn't provide the "YOUTUBE influencer coverage of a drag-queen" but that just lightly smoothed and evened my skin tone.  My goal with make-up is not to cover but to enhance.  I want my freckles to show through (even though I don't have many left on my face from strict sun protection in the Colorado sun.)  

With COVID restrictions, it's such a mess at Ulta's and Sephora's because you can no longer play with the products and test them.  They are all sealed up and in an official state of quarantine (although why are we still using that's clearly surpassed 40 days and 40 wait, that's was Noah's Ark...anywayyyys).  Luckily I had the nicest bubbly little beauty consultant walk up to me and ask me if I need help.  The thing I want to emphasize here is the amazing customer service and how she would use her phone to color match me.  I explained it was my first winter in Colorado and that I wanted a fresh glowy "put together look for work."  And, she showed me some creamy and moisturizing additions to my skin/make-up routine.  So, this is my round-up, thanks to this awesome beauty consultant:

1. Lancome Teint Idole Ultrawear Makeup Stick:

Let me start by saying, I've never used a foundation stick.  I LOVE this guy!  I'm HOOKED!  I'll never go back to liquid foundation again.  Here we have all day color wear and soft matte finish but still super creamy!  For most of my life I assumed matte finishes would look dry and be aging.  But, I have gotten so many compliments about how smooth and flawless my skin looks.  The color match was perfection.

I'm not done...(slobbering love affair with a foundation stick...sad, I know, but LET ME LIVE!)

This foundation has a built-in Broad Spectrum SPF 21 (not that it stops me from still applying sunscreen from hairline all the way down to my d├ęcolletage)!  Second, I love how I can draw on line exactly where I would want the coverage and then blend with a beauty blender.  It's the least messy way to apply foundation, it travels well (think carry-on baggage scanning), and it's just an all around amazing product.  Well done, Lancome.  I won't be strong arming this thing open to try and pry out the remaining project.  It's super quick!

2. Urban Decay Beached Bronzer (Sunkissed):

This stuff rates as the best bronzer I've ever used.  I usually have to be super careful since I'm fair skinned not to look orange with a bronzer.  For the longest time I shied away from bronzers.  But, a bronzer is totally necessary for those who engage in skin/sun protection but still want a healthy sun kissed glow.  A lot of people like the glittery bronzers, but they look dirty on my face.  I'm a huge fan of the matte bronzers.  Trust me, I do not know a lot about make-up (although I find watching someone on YouTube cake on make-up oddly therapeutic).  Matte allows for a classic sculpting and to showcase your features and make them pop, as in, "Oh my God, Becky, you have cheekbones for daaaayyys, girl."  After applying foundation, I dust some right below my hairline and work down and a wee bit.  I add some from where my hairline meets the stop of my ear all the way under my cheekbone...BOOM POP!  And, I brush some on my jaw line.  Sometimes, I'll contour my nose.  Anyways, I love this compact.  Such a great buy!

3. Urban Decay Face and Lip Tint (Color 1993):

These things are the BOMB!  OBSESSED!  I am seriously contemplating buying all the other colors.  First, if you're just waking up and want to grab a cup of joe and head to yoga or the gym or out for a hike and don't want to look dead, you can just put this on your apples and lips and throw on a little mascara and DONE!  Literally, in the mess!  I LOVE this cream stick.  It provides so much moisture and glow (Remember, I go matte with everything else, so now are my creamy cherries on top)!  This color is perfection for Fall and Winter, but Urban Decay offers so many yummy colors.  You really need to go check this out!  FYI, you can apply right to your face; however, I use a ULTA brush to have more control of where I want it blended out.  Unlike a powder blush, this is so translucent.  Sometimes, with a powder, I feel like I can look like a clown and I don't feel like powder blush is buildable.  Guys, THIS is so buildable.  OBBBBBSESSED!

4. Urban Decay Brow Blade (Gingersnap):

WATERPROOF eyebrow products!!!!  What the what what??  Not that we sweat that much here in Colorado, but this is so nice for pool time!  I love this product because it's a dual edge product.  One end provides a very thin pencil perfect for drawing.  The other end provides for an ink stain if you want to go dramatic.  I will tell you that I really only use the pencil side because I have zero patience for making the blade flicks for the dramatic brow.  Honestly, as a strawberry blonde, I just want my brows a bit darker and less sparse looking.  And, I will never microblade (perhaps this is for a different post) but I've change my brow style three times in the past year.  So, I won't be doing permanent makeup any time soon.

5. Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-on Lip Pencil:

I have to confess I have already lost this pencil and I miss it so hard.  I'm going to have to swing back by ULTA and replace it.  It stands by it's promise.  It's quite literally an all day lip pencil.  After lunch or drinking coffee, our lipstick and gloss is audios amigos.  But, this pencil stays put.  I got the color "broken" and I love it.  It's a very soft nude color.  I have no natural tint to my lip so I love this stays on so strong.  This year I've finally started playing around with nude colors and I love them.  Anyways, this pencil is so good and such a great find.

6. Urban Decay Concealer:

YUSSSSSS!  I find that concealer can be such a hard thing to shop for.  When you're 41, you don't want to get stuck with one of those concealers that just ages you.  This one is so great and it only takes a small dab.  I put it under my eyes and BAM instant brightening.  I also put it on both sides of my nostrils because I battle light redness there.  This is the best concealer I've ever used and I'm a life long fan.  It's perfect for all skin types, especially mature skin.  It never settles into fine lines under the eyes.

And, drum roll please for the GAME CHANGER...

7. Urban Decay All-Nighter Setting Spray:

Ending on lucky number 7...ahhh, I love that.  No, I'm not into numerology, and I certainly am not here to discredit the validity of such practice.  And, yes, I do make a wish when I see 11:11 on the clock.  This stuff rocks the Casbah.  It literally keeps your make-up set all day.  And, the first time I wore it, a friend told me my face looked so smooth and was literally glowing.  I've gotten so many compliments on my skin since using this setting spray.  And, did I mention how moisturizing this product is?  It feels like I sprayed a cold drink of water all over my skin.  One day I left home without using it, and I turned around and went back home to do a quick spritz.  I promise you, your make-up will look as fresh by the end of the day as it did when you walked out the door.

I wanted to make mention of Urban Decay's commitment to social responsibility, which should make you feel good when you spend your hard earned money on their products:

UD launched a global initiative called the "Ultraviolet Edge," which promotes women empowerment.  They have pledged to donate 100% of earnings on select products to women in underdeveloped countries.  Additionally, UD is PETA certified, meaning they have zero participation in cruelty to animals.

Thanks so much for stopping by to support a blog writer in the New Year!  Here's to wishing you so much happiness in 2021!

Deuces, amigos/as!


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