Bite Beauty Lip Lab Limited Release Crème Deluxe Lipstick #001 Review

If you haven’t heard yet, on the first Wednesday of every month for the rest of the year, Bite Beauty will be releasing a new shade in their Lip Lab Limited Release Crème Deluxe Lipstick series. Being a huge fan of Bite lip products–and having seen a preview swatch of January’s shade on their Instagram–I had to snag the first shade of the year. Keep reading for my thoughts on January’s shade, #001!

Overall: 7.4/10

Packaging: 8.5/10 – Pretty standard for Bite lip products, with the matte grey packaging. I also really liked the box it came in, with the special “001 01/15” label on it. I’ve never been disappointed by their packaging, and I really like their unique bullet shapes.

Pigmentation: 8/10 – The shade is described as a “deep burgundy with a red undertone”, and I definitely got the red undertone to it when I applied it. It also took a couple swipes to build the color to full opacity, but it’s a beautiful color in my opinion when you get it there.

Texture: 7.5/10 – The lipstick isn’t particularly drying but I didn’t find it as moisturizing as other Bite lip products, and it is a bit waxy but that isn’t something that bothers me much.  I also found the product to be a bit slippery, which brings us to…

Application: 6/10 – Not gonna lie, this lipstick is a bitch to work with. Because it is slippery, even using a lip brush took work, which is rough considering that the product needs to be built up for full opacity, and using a lip brush sort of got me this watercolor-like result so I had to modify my technique a bit. You’re definitely going to want a good lip pencil with this one, but even that may not be enough. On top of that, it also applies rather patchy.

Longevity: 7/10 – I know not to expect super longevity in Bite’s products that are on the creamier side like this one, but with eating and drinking I got a solid two hours of good wear time out of it before it started to fade in the center of my lip (away from the lip line). I’d say between two and four hours, with eating a drinking, is a good range for the longevity.

The Bite Beauty limited release lipsticks retail solely on Sephora.com and are $36 for 0.15oz of product. I was able to have purchasing access to the lipstick a minute or two before 11am CST, which makes sense because Sephora operates on PST, and 11am where I live would be 9am there, making the release hit at the start of the normal 9-5 workday out there. These lipsticks are limited edition; as soon as they’re sold out, they’re gone. The hype of this product combined with the hefty pricetag (their standard lip products range from $22-$24, with a few others being no more than $30) only fuels my disappointment that this product under-performed in comparison to my expectations.

Looking at it in the tube, the shade looks beautiful, and I’m a sucker for dark shades. I’m not pale pale–I’m about NW20–but I’m pale enough where I can really appreciate the contrast of a deep, dark lipstick and it gives me LIFE. I was already a bit disappointed when this shade pulled more red than I expected on my hand swatch, but I thought, eh, once it builds up on my lips it’ll probably get darker.

I wasn’t completely off base with that hope, but my goodness gracious, was this terrible to work with. The struggle was very, very real. Not only did trying to place the product with a lip brush cause it to make the product more sheer than just going straight at it from the tube, but the product slides and slips that it makes it difficult to create nice, clean lines around the mouth or just get it to settle. You’ll notice even in the hand swatch that straight-from-the-tube application is a bit patchy. Even with the use of a lip liner and then blotting and setting the lipstick, I still ended up getting feathering after a while, I’d say around the one and a half to two hour mark which is when I first looked at it in a mirror post-application.

Lip swatch done using NYX lip liner in Auburn (closest I had on hand) and cleaning up with concealer.

However, I will say that I was surprised by the fact that once it did more or less dry, I didn’t notice any transfer while I was sipping wine all night. If there was any, it was minimal. This may have been a result of me blotting and setting it properly rather than anything on the lipstick’s part, so I’m not going to label this transfer-proof because certainly with this formula that would be highly inaccurate (and when I bumped my lips with my hand a couple times, I definitely got some transfer), but it’s still something I noticed. More surprisingly, because this is such a dark color, I didn’t have any staining; it came clean off my lips when I took off my makeup at the end of the night.

So, I’m torn. While I look Bite Beauty products and really do love this shade even though it’s not quite what I expected, it is such a hassle to work with that in the end it won’t be the first thing I reach for unless I have the time to sit and work with it. Even then, I have such little patience that I’ll probably opt for something else in my collection. This was such a letdown that it makes me hesitant to go after another of the Lip Lab Limited Releases. At $36 a pop–which is reaching high end pricepoint–I’d rather invest my money elsewhere if this formula is consistently going to be a disappointment.

Did you purchase this lipstick? What are your thoughts? What Bite products do you love, if you own any? Be sure to share in the comments below!

Until next time, stay well, stay beautiful xx

Tarte Cosmetics Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Palette Review

Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Palette

Since I gained my serious interest in makeup beginning earlier this year, I’ve learned a lot about myself, primarily from a beauty standpoint. A couple of the finer points were that I have neutral-leaning-cool toned skin and semi-hooded eyes. While I do love my shimmer shades, I find myself, because of my semi-hoodedness, reaching more for matte shades, and ones on the more cool side of things. That’s why when Tarte Cosmetics introduced their Tartelette palette, I could not resist.

The Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Palette ($44.00 USD) was released for a special week-long “presale” of sorts and will be rereleased to the public in Spring 2015 (the exact date has not been announced, but Temptalia has said January 2015, which I don’t consider spring, but that may be my Wisconsin bias). It is an all matte palette that remains rather neutral, with some shades leaning warm and some leaning cool. Some may see this as being in the same vein as the Be MATTEnificent palette (which is back in stock at that link, in case you missed out on it last year!). When I found out about that palette, that was the all-matte palette I really wanted but had been too late to the game to get, which is why I grabbed the Tartelette immediately. I can’t confirm whether the shades in the Be MATTEnificent appear exactly in this palette but looking at them side-by-side I’d say at the very least there are dupe shades in the Tartelette, and obviously no blush.

The Be MATTEnificent and Tartelette appear to be similar in size though, and the size is one of the things I like about this palette. It just feels a little more compact than my rectangular palettes. Plus it’s slim in thickness too, which I also like because then it doesn’t feel bulky, a total plus. I mean, don’t even get me started on the original packaging of Too Faced’s Chocolate Bar palette…

L to R – free spirit, force of nature, dreamer, multi-tasker, caregiver, natural beauty

L to R – free spirit, force of nature, dreamer, multi-tasker, caregiver, natural beauty

L to R – best friend, bombshell, super mom, wanderer, power player, fashionista

L to R – best friend, bombshell, super mom, wanderer, power player, fashionista

Now to the shadows themselves. I took a risk purchasing a palette that no one else had gotten their hands on yet and while I was excited for the prospect of this palette, I was also equally terrified that I may have made a mistake. I had also never used Tarte shadows or any of their products up to this point so I was making quite an investment in a new brand for me. I did not come out disappointed. The shadows are soft to the touch and for the most part feel buttery or silky with a few that are perhaps a bit more powdery.

All the swatches you see above were done on bare skin, no primer/base to them. I’ll just get it out of the way now: fashionista is superrrrr pigmented and I love it. The rest have good pigmentation as well. free spirit, caregiver, super mom, wanderer and power player were all shades that I did have to go in for a second swipe just because they are on the lighter side, but these are shades that I would be using as a base shadow on the lid, highlights and/or transition shades, so they perform as I would expect and do not disappoint. The rest speak for themselves, though sadly I feel my this-is-the-last-light-I’ll-get-for-the-day-because-it’s-winter post-work photos don’t do them enough justice. When it gets dark by 5pm these days, there’s only so much you can do.

There’s also this handy little guide that is included with the palette.

Sadly my experience wearing the palette has been limited due to a hectic holiday, but I did create two simple neutral looks for Thanksgiving with my family and the day after. Both looks held up well through the eight hours that I wore them, even as I was getting increasingly sleepy at the end of both nights, which is when my eyes start to water and everything generally becomes a mess on my face! There wasn’t any creasing that I could notice, and perhaps the worse thing to happen was the colors beginning to fade. Bottomline, if you use a primer or some other base underneath, these should play nice for you.

I know many people are bored to death with neutrals at this point but I still feel that this is a welcome player to the game, especially as an all-matte palette. There are of course other options out there that are less expensive, for example the Sonia Kashuk Eye On Neutral Matte palette for $19.99 USD or theBalm’s Meet Matt(e) Nude which is $42.00 USD but can often be found on sale for half off, just to name two. However, most all-matte palettes I’ve seen up to now have always felt a bit more warm-leaning on the whole than I’d like, and I embrace my cool side more often (oh girrrlll, give me all the silver jewelry!). With the Tartelette having such a nice variety that works for both cool and warm tones, I have that flexibility to choose which way I want to lean with a look on a particular day. I get the feeling I’ll be reaching for this palette quite a bit on its own or in combination with my other palettes and shadows as it is a great complement to my current collection.

What are your thoughts on this palette? Did you pick it up during the limited pre-release? Will you pick it up in the spring during the general sale? Let me know! Feel free to ask questions about the palette as well.

I’ve got some Black Friday-Cyber Monday haul fun coming your way so be sure to stay tuned! 😀 Until then, stay well, stay beautiful! xx

Update 12/9/14: If you’re a VIB or VIB Rouge at Sephora, you can now pick up this palette at the link here! I will add another link when this palette becomes available to non-VIB customers.

My Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale picks

Happy Thanksgiving morning to my US readership, and Happy Holiday Sales Weekend to everyone else! No more where you are, I hope that you have a wonderful day and that you take some time to be grateful for friends, family and others in your life as well as the abundance of things, material and otherwise, in your life. While we excitedly make grabby hands at all the products we wish to buy, we must first remember what we already own and be grateful that we have the means to make these purchases. I must also say that I’m grateful for all of you. My readership may be small yet, but the fact that you guys keep coming back makes this all worthwhile 🙂

I’m not going to list every sale that’s going on mainly because someone else has already done that! For the most comprehensive list of what’s going down this weekend, check out this post on Nouveau Cheap’s blog. G is hard at work keeping that list as updated as possible, and that’s another thing for which to be grateful! And when I say comprehensive, I mean comprehensive. Go check it out!

I’ve already shared the Coastal Scents sale with you which started yesterday, and if you haven’t already checked out the website, get on that! The following are some of my other top choices for sales that you should be aware of and definitely check out over the next few days:

Anastasia Beverly Hills
loooove my Dipbrow. I was fortunate enough that when I started makeup was around the same time as the release of the Dipbrow Pomades. The SA at Sephora recommended it in Blonde to me and I have never looked back. Her brow products are truly my favorites, and starting tomorrow, 11/28, her brow products are all 25% off on the Anastasia website. Also on the Anastasia website starting 12/1 the Contour Kit is 25% off. From what I can tell, that only applies to the original Contour Kit, not the custom ones you can build.

theBalm
From 7am PST 12/1 to 7am PST 12/2, the entire theBalm website will be 50% off. I’m hoping to finally pick up their Mary-Lou Manizer and their Overshadow in No Money, No Honey that I keep seeing everywhere on everyone. I’ve also seen their Meet Matt(e) Nude palette recommended quite often to those looking for a good, affordable all-matte palette. I also just love their packaging!

e.l.f.
One of my favorite inexpensive brands. Valid now through 11/30, they’re having a BOGO 50% off sitewide sale with a free Limited Edition Kabuki Brush and free shipping on orders $35+ using code BLACKFRIDAY on their website. They will also be having a deal on 12/1 using code CYBERMONDAY for 50% off orders $30+ plus free shipping on orders $35+. This means that you order needs to be $30 before the discount to get 50% off but needs to be $35 after discount for free shipping, therefore your best bet is to get at least $70 worth of product to get both deals.

LORAC
This deal is great if you haven’t picked up either of the Pro palettes yet, have one Pro palette and not the other, or want to send these out as gifts. I highly recommend any of these above options because I adore my Pro palette. Starting at 8am PST on 12/1, the original Pro and Pro 2 palette will each be 25% off (down to $31.50 each from $42 each) on the LORAC website. All orders will also receive a free red eyelash curler. LORAC also does every day free shipping, no code required. BONUS! LORAC has two special Black Friday palettes, the Sultry Starlet Shimmer Eyeshadow Palette and the Vintage Vixen Matte Eyeshadow Palette for $12 each in Ulta stores and on the Ulta Website. AND they will have a Cyber Monday palette, the Champagne Dreams Eyeshadow Palette, for $15 on the website. If the Pro palettes are still out of your budget but you want to try out LORAC shadows, I highly recommend snagging one of these little guys.

Sigma
It may finally be time to treat myself to some Sigma brushes and up my brush collection game. Valid 11/27-11/28, Sigma is offering free worldwide shipping on all orders with code BF2014 on their website. Then on 12/1, they’re doing 20% off sitewide with code CM2014 once again on their website. There’s a lot of recommendations out there for plenty of their individual brushes but particularly their Mr. Bunny and Mrs. Bunny Travel Kits if you’re looking for a quality brush set.

Too Faced
Oh, Chocolate Bar Palette, how I love thee, how I want to each thee… Between that and the Melted lipsticks, Too Faced has a good place in my collection. On 11/28, if you buy 1 Better Than Sex mascara, you get one item of your choice 50% off on the Too Faced website. From 11/29 to 12/1, all sale items are 50% off on their website, plus get $10 off of any $60 purchase, $15 off of any $75 purchase and $20 off any $100 purchase. Then on 12/1, get a mystery grab bag for $35 on the Too Faced website. I’m excited to see what ends up in the grab bags!

Urban Decay
UD has a handful of specials up its sleeve starting 11/27 and rounding out on 12/1 on their website that I’m going to bullet point for you now:

  • 11/27 – 12/1: Free shipping on all orders
  • 11/27: 6-Piece Badass Lip Set $90 (Revolution Lipsticks in shades Anarchy, Catfight, F-Bomb, Naked, Native and Turn On)
  • 11/28: Ammo Palette $10, Smoked Palette $20; buy BOTH for $30 and receive a free deluxe sample of Perversion Mascara
  • 11/29: Any 2 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencils for $20
  • 11/30: Any 3 eyeshadow singles for $36
  • 12/1: Electric Palette + travel size Black Velvet 24/7 Velvet Eye Pencil for $36

I’m already setting a a reminder for that Cyber Monday deal because I’ve been lusting after that palette for a long, long time. From what I can tell, the deals go live at 10pm PST the night prior (so 1am EST the day of the deal) so take that into account if you’re setting reminders!

Indie companies are also doing their own deals this weekend, and a comprehensive list of those can be found here on the Indiemakeupandmore subreddit.

Remember, this isn’t a comprehensive list, just my own personal picks based on my wishlist or brands I’ve used and loved. There are plenty more out there, including other major brands, superstores, department stores and drug stores, and they all be found at that link I provided to Nouveau Cheap’s blog post.

And don’t forget to use Ebates wherever it applies!!! Seriously, you’ll thank me after the holiday season when you get that cash back.

What holiday deals and steals are you looking to take advantage of over the next couple days? Are there any that you know of that you haven’t seen get enough love yet? Let me know in the comments below!

Happy shopping, my dears! I love forward to spending this holiday season with all of you 🙂 Stay well, stay beautiful! xx

PSA: Coastal Scents 50% off sale starts NOW!

Source: CoastalScents.com

Congratulations on making it to Thanksgiving-eve everyone! Or, for my non-Americans, congratulations on making it to Wednesday–the weekend is in sight! I’m anticipating compiling a large list of my choices for Black Friday beauty and makeup deals before stuffing myself like a turkey tomorrow evening but right now I want to give you a head’s up on a sale that’s definitely one of my top picks.

Coastal Scents has begun their 50% off site wide sale now through Monday, December 1st. Yes, the entire website is reduced to half-off! Makeup, brushes, natural products, all are 50% off their original price. If you’re just getting into makeup or looking to experiment with inexpensive but quality products to expand your collection, I highly encourage taking a look at this company. Their 252 UItimate Palette is a favorite for those looking to expand their collection without breaking the bank, and it’s now down to $12.48. This is an especially great deal for beginners because it gives you tons and tons of shadows to play around with. Looking for some Naked palette dupes? The Revealed and Revealed 2 palettes have both brought in great reviews, and both are now reduced to $9.98! Need some new brushes and want to stay on a budget? Then perhaps their 22 Piece Brush Set for $17.48 may catch your eye.

There’s plenty of other products to choose from as well. I’ve built my own custom palette choosing from their pressed shadow “Hot Pots” which are currently all $0.98 and I think they’re a great option for adding variety to your eyeshadow collection. You can add these to any current existing magnetic palettes you may own or CS sells their own, which are also reduced in price. Skincare addicts who are into using oils in their skincare may want to check out their Oils that are on sale.

Have you tried Coastal Scent products before? What other products would you suggest grabbing during the sale? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time, stay well, stay beautiful! xx

PSA: Free shipping today on ANY Ulta order!

Good morning beauties and foodies and Happy Friday! We’ve made it through another exciting week, and as we dive on in to the holiday season, I know I’m going to have plenty to report on! Today is absolutely no exception.

Source: Ulta.com

Today only, Ulta has free shipping on any order. That’s right, any order! No code, no minimum, just place your order and away you go! As an added bonus, there’s currently a $5 off of any $10 purchase coupon*. Have an item that’s ~$10 that you’ve been wanting to try? Use the coupon, enjoy the free shipping, and then just worry about tax! This is a great deal for picking up some stocking stuffers and other gifts, or something for yourself.

And Ebates users can enjoy 8% cash back from their order!

This is a great deal, especially for lovers of NYX. I know how hard it can be to find certain items in store sometimes from the brand, or how terribly picked-over the display gets. It’s also a great deal if you’re looking to pick up from the drugstore-brand side of things, or for any orders you’ve had in your queue that you were waiting to be large enough for free shipping.

I’ll keep updating you with my choice holiday picks and deals on top of the other things I’m working on. If you’re looking to stay completely up to date on deals at Ulta, Sephora, Target, etc., I would definitely recommend following Nouveau Cheap. Gianna is always on her game finding deals, and I found out about this deal through her Instagram. Her mission is saving you (and herself haha) money on the products you love, and if you’re a drugstore product super fan, you definitely cannot live without her.

Until next time, stay well, stay beautiful! xx

* Exclusions do apply. Please see the coupon for more details.

Edit: I almost forgot one last added bonus – through tomorrow, ULTAmate Rewards members get 2X points on purchases, and Platinum members get 3X points. Make sure you have this offer activated if you decide to order today! To check if you already have it activated, log into your rewards account on Ulta’s website, click on My Rewards and at the bottom of that page will be your Bonus Offers. Happy shopping!

PSA: tartelette Amazonian clay matte palette exclusive limited release!

I told myself for so long that with my UD Naked 3, Lorac Pro 1 and Too Faced Chocolate Bar palette that I was all set as far as palettes go, and then this beauty popped up in my inbox today…

Source: tartecosmetics.com

Behold, the tartelette Amazonian clay matte palette. That’s right, matte. palette. 12 matte shades. In one palette. My restraint was non-existent.

Now granted, the three big palettes I have are great and I like them for each their own reasons. I haven’t had trouble creating looks from them, and my life would probably be fine with just those three. However, I have neutral-leaning-cool skin, and while I can pull off warmer shades, I typically avoid them, and sometimes (aside from maybe my Naked 3) my palettes can feel too warm for what I’m feeling on a particular day. Plus, with semi-hooded eyes and a tendency for more “natural” looks as opposed to bolder eye makeup, mattes tend to call my name more often than shimmer shades. I look at this and I had this instant feeling that yes, this is the one. I did hesitate as I do not own any tarte products yet and, of course, being one of the first to purchase something before there’s any swatches or option to swatch it yourself is a risky venture, but I feel confident about this product. Fingers crossed! You’ll be the first ones to know no matter which way things go. 🙂

If you’d like to take the jump with me yourselves, click the link above. Starting today, the palette is only available for limited release for five days and then will be released to the public in Spring 2015. The palette ships free, you’ll get a free sample and if you use Ebates remember to get that 4% cash back!

Just looking at it, what are your first impressions of this palette? Will you grab it now or wait until it’s general release? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time, stay well, stay beautiful! xx

Stila Fall Fling Sale – 25% off plus Free Shipping! + Last day Too Faced Sale

Hello loyal readers! I do apologize for my absence. I’ve been working on an online course that I’ve been falling behind on as well as taking care of some personal life events. But rest assured, I have some great content coming your way soon, including several reviews and hopefully some more recipes!

But for now, I’ve got a great deal to tell you about – Stila Cosmetics is currently holding their Fall Fling Sale! Now through Monday, all items (excluding sale items and Holiday 2014 sets) are 25% off plus you get free shipping. No minimum purchase required and no code! This is a great time to pick up some Stila products that you’ve had your eye on or pick up more of your favorites. My personal recommendations would be their Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner and Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks. Their eyeliner is my go-to liquid liner right now, and the liquid lipsticks are just fantastic and stay in place for so long. Beso is more often than not my red of choice, it’s so great. I’ve also heard good things about their “in the ____” shadow palettes and their Magnificent Metals shadows.

Plus, if you’re an Ebates user (which, if you’re not already and do a lot of online shopping, you should be!) you can currently get 8% cash back on the website.

One last bonus bit for you – Today is the last day of Too Faced’s Friends & Family sale where you can take 20% off your order (excluding sale items) with code TAKE20, with free shipping on orders over $50. Been eyeing up that Chocolate Bar Eye Shadow Palette for your holiday gift? Do it. Get it. Now’s your chance! Speaking from personal experience, you won’t be disappointed. Plus it smells delightful. And you can get 4% cash back from Ebates.

I know a lot of us are still recovering from Ulta and Sephora having their 20% off offers, but if you happened to miss anything during those sales or need to keep tackling that holiday list, these are both great opportunities to take advantage of.

Until next time, stay well, stay beautiful! xx