smart is the new pretty

Tag: cosmetics

So Much Love for Roses

So Much Love for Roses

 Eyes:  Colourpop Lo Key Palette and Cloud Nine eyeshadow Mac Cosmetics Carbon eyeshadow Urban Decay All Nighter Eyeliner  Buxom mascara topped with Too Faced Better Than Sex Waterproof Brows: Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade and Clear Brow Gel, Pixi Contour Powder  Face:  MAC Studio […]

Concealers for Summer 2017

Concealers for Summer 2017

Concealer is my most-loved makeup staple. I’ve tried so many over the years, and I’ve finally landed on a few favorites. Summer often brings light makeup days, so it is the perfect season for an easy wash of concealer and flip flops. However, I still […]

A Guide to Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Products

A Guide to Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Products

I adore Anastasia Beverly Hills; their highlighters and eyeshadows are some of the best I’ve ever tried. But Anastasia Beverly Hills is best known for its brow products. ABH is the reigning makeup brand for brows, in part because it was the first brand to offer a wide-range of brow specific products in every color. I have tried many ABH brow products, and as a devotee to the line I can offer a guide to Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Products. 

Brow Definer: The Brow Definer is so easy to use; the unique twist-up applicator has a long, thin pencil head. This may sound odd at first, but it is perfect for creating brush-like strokes and defining the brow. It’s my favorite brow product, period. The cream-to-powder formula also makes it very bendable, so by running the spoolie through the brow you can blend any thick lines to imitate real hair.

Brow Wiz: Another ABH classic, the Brow Wiz is a reigning brow pencil. It has the same cream-to-powder formula as the Brow Definer, so it is super bendable. The tiny retractable pencil draws fine lines, so you can create a detailed and natural looking brow. This is a great product, I just find that I can do my brows more quickly with the Brow Definer. Also, if you press to hard on your Brow Wiz you can break it, so don’t get too carried away while drawing on your arches.

Dipbrow Pomade: This is the most unique Anastasia brow product. The Dipbrow Pomade is a thick pomade; it has a waxier feel than the brow pencils. However, it is perfect for creating a really bold brow. It can be blended with a spoolie, but it doesn’t blend out as easily as pencil products. I like the Dipbrow for full-glam looks when I want my eyebrows to look as bold as the rest of my makeup. However, I find it takes me a long time to do my brows with the Dipbrow Pomade.

Brow Gel: The Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Gel is the superglue of brow gels. One swipe of this gel and your brows are locked in position all day long. One tube lasts for a long time (at least a year, I’d say), so it’s worth the investment.

A Guide to Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Products

What are your favorite brow products? Please comment and follow me on Bloglovin’ and Instagram, thanks for dropping by!

Almost Summer 

Almost Summer 

I’ve been super busy this month, so I haven’t posted in a while. But here’s a summery going-out look I did a few weeks ago. I can’t remember everything I used, but I know the lips were a sample of MAC’s Creme de Nude (which […]

Black Radiance Brilliant Effects Lip Gloss Review & Swatches

Black Radiance Brilliant Effects Lip Gloss Review & Swatches

I bought two Black Radiance lip glosses at Target a few months back, because I was looking for glittery lip glosses to send me into summer. While I should probably just break down and purchase the famous Jouer Lip Topper in Skinny Dip, I saw […]

Tarte Shape Tape Concealer Review 

Tarte Shape Tape Concealer Review 

Tarte’s Shape Tape Concealer has blown up the internet over the past year, and first things first: I’m a believer. I use concealer almost every single day, but nothing compares to the Tarte Shape Tape for me. 
I have two colors in this concealer, one that matches my skin tone and one that is a little lighter (for when I want a highlighted effect.) I use them both regularly, often mixing them, and this concealer comes in a variety of shades, so chances are you will find your match. 

What makes it so great? First of all, for a high-end concealer, it rings up at $24, which is a good price. Especially considering that you get a lot of product, and just a little goes a long way. I put three dots of the concealer under each eye, and that’s plenty. It covers my eyes and my lids, and it makes a great eyeshadow primer. 


This concealer is super full coverage, matte (but comfortable) and lightweight. The only con (which isn’t really a con) is that it’s always sold out at Ulta, which is the only store that carries it (but you can also find it on the Tarte website). 


I’m swooning for the Tarte Shape Tape, and I doubt I’ll ever be married to another concealer like this one. What is your favorite concealer? Be sure to follow my blog on Bloglovin’ and check out my Instagram. 

Juvia’s Place “The Nubian” Eyeshadow Palette Review

Juvia’s Place “The Nubian” Eyeshadow Palette Review

I’ve been infatuated with this eyeshadow palette since I first saw it. A Youtube favorite of mine, NikkieTutorials, was wearing the eyeshadows in one of her videos, and I thought “my gosh, what is she wearing on her eyes?” I had been looking for the […]

What You Need to Know about Eyeshadow Primer

What You Need to Know about Eyeshadow Primer

Eyeshadow primer is a crucial first step to creating a beautiful eyeshadow look. Not only can primer help make eyeshadows appear more vibrant on the eye, eyeshadow primer also makes eyeshadows last all day long. Most importantly, eyeshadow primer prevents eyeshadows from creasing on the lid. […]

Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette Review and Swatches

Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette Review and Swatches

Urban Decay’s Naked Palettes are iconic and popular. Their larger palettes (Naked, Naked2, Naked3, and Naked Smokey) are arguably some of the most coveted palettes in the game. But are they worth the hype?

I was interested in purchasing the Naked3 palette, but I was hesitant because I thought a swatch test produced an allergic reaction on my arm. I am not allergic to my Naked Basics Palette, but they aren’t the most comfortable eyeshadows I’ve worn. I find that when I layer them (e.g. to create a smokey eye) they feel chalky and heavy on my lids.

The palette contains six neutral shades. The eyeshadow formula is smooth, but with some fallout. I would not consider these eyeshadows as buttery as some of the other formulas I have tried. The one shimmery shadow in my pan has a different consistency from all the rest, and it hasn’t behaved the same ever since I dipped a semi-wet brush into the pan. I had washed the brush the night prior to using the palette, so the brush got the eyeshadow wet when I dipped it into the pan. However, that shadow (Venus) has never been the same. It has a splotch on it that has permeated into deeper layers of the shadow (I can’t seem to get rid of it by scraping off the top layer). I have gotten eyeshadows wet in the past, and they’ve always dried back to normal, so I’m not sure what happened with Venus.

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Despite my reservations about this palette, I use it frequently because of its cool-neutral browns(perfect for channeling a ’90s supermodel like Cindy Crawford or a low-key daytime look). The shades are:

Venus: A sheer white with a slight shimmer; this is the least pigmented shade in the palette.

Foxy: An off-white, slightly yellow neutral and one of my favorites in the palette. I use this eyeshadow all over the lid or as an eraser shade. I find this to be the easiest eyeshadow to work with in the palette, because it is so smooth.

W.O.S.: This eyeshadow is very similar in texture to Foxy, but more of a pink-peach hue.

Naked2: This shade is great for blending out your crease. It is a cool light brown, verging on taupe. The formula is drier and has more fallout than Foxy and W.O.S.

Faint: This is the warmest shade in the palette, but it is on the neutral side of the warm spectrum. It is a milk chocolate brown, similar to Naked2 in texture.

Crave: I love black eyeshadow, but I just can’t seem to fall in love with Crave. It isn’t as black as I want it to be.  Whenever I blend it out, it ends up looking like a dark gray.FullSizeRender (38).jpg

I like that this palette is compact and great for travel. It has wearable matte shades that are great for everyday use. I don’t like this palette for heavier nighttime looks, because the eyeshadows feel thick and uncomfortable when you try to build them up for a dramatic look. They blend very nicely into my skin, but they don’t blend into each other very well. The eyeshadows in the Naked Basics palette are not as easy to work with as eyeshadows from M.A.C., Morphe, or Melt Cosmetics. A 35 shadow Morphe palette costs $22, while the Naked Basics Palette costs $29 and you only get six eyeshadows.

I will continue to use the Naked Basics Palette because I like the colors and because its small size is convenient, but the eyeshadow formula is just average. You can easily find better eyeshadows, often at a more affordable price.

Kiko Cosmetics Radiant Touch Creamy Stick Highlighter

Kiko Cosmetics Radiant Touch Creamy Stick Highlighter

Kiko Cosmetics is an Italian makeup brand that has taken over Europe and is making its way to America. According to the Kiko Cosmetics site, the brand has “600 points of sale in 8 countries in Europe (Italy, Spain, France, Portugal, Germany, United Kingdom, Austria […]