Desert Sunset Glam

Facetune(1)

I was playing around with the new Too Faced Sugar Pop Eye Palette the other day and I came up with this fun look. It’s a nice way to add a little pop of color with the orange on the lid and the bright pink on the lower lashline. After I was done, I found the colors I applied reminded me of a sunset I had seen in Sedona, a beautiful area in the desert of Arizona. It looks something like this…

The Sugar Pop Eye Palette is a wonderful little palette–the colors are very pigmented and apply very smoothly. It also has a nice mix of neutrals and bright colors that are perfect for spring/summer. It retails for $36 and I think it’s a reasonable price for the quality of the product.

sugar pop palette

Step 1: Start with your gorgeous blank face.

step 1 desert glam naked face

I applied my normal skincare regime–toner, serum, moisturizer, and eye cream. I generally hold off on applying foundation until I am done with my eyeshadow, in case I have a lot of fallout.


Step 2: Prep & Prime

step 2 desert glam primePrime your lids with your primer of choice. Here I am using Tarte’s Colored Clay CC Eye Primer. You swipe it on like a crayon and blend it out with your fingers. It’s a good product, but I have had big problems with the packaging.


Step 3: Base Shades step 3

Colors You’ll be Using in this Step

Grab your standard transition shade on a crease brush. I recommend using a matte shade just slightly darker than your own skin tone. For myself, I use Wit from Stila Eyes are the Window to the Mind Pallete.


step 3 desert glam transition

Apply color in a windshield wiper motion to your crease. Back and forth, back and forth. You really can’t mess this up, you’re just applying the base for your more dramatic eyeshadow on top!


step 3 lid


Grab your lid shade with a flat eyeshadow brush, which would ideally just be your nude skin color. For myself, I use Genius from that same Stila palette. Swipe it all over the lid, from eyelashes to crease.

At this point, it will not really look like you’ve done much. That’s okay, we’ve only really started!


Step 4: Let’s Start Playing with Color

color pop upper


step 4 a

Grab the shade for your outer V, Malted Milk Ball, on your preferred brush. I normally don’t use any sparkly shadows in this area, but Malted Milk Ball actually has more of a satin finish.  I actually just use a squared off eyeshadow brush for this. We’re not aiming to be super precise for this yet. Starting on the outer corner of your eyelid/crease, apply Malted Milk Ball by inward short strokes. When you have built up the color to the depth you’re happy with, work it inward on the crease a little.


step 4 B

Take a clean fluffy blending brush and go to town on the outer edges of that brown we just applied. Blend, blend, blend. If you find the brown color is too light for your liking after blending, you can go back and intensify the color by repeating the above a second time.



step 4cApply your lid color, Macaron, from eyelashes to crease. Take the fluffy blending brush and blend out the edges around the crease and where Macaron meets Malted Milk Ball. You will probably need to go back and reintensify and blend a couple times, as Macaron is a little sheer. Note: At this point, I go and apply my foundation, eyebrows, and undereye concealer. Any fallout from this point is pretty minimal, plush it’s helpful to have eyebrows done before you do your eyebrow highlight.





step 4DPick up your eyebrow highlight color, Rock Candy, apply underneath your brows. You could also use this to highlight your inner corner if you want (I used Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal for my inner corner).

Awkward eye contact with the camera is optional.


Step 5: Line your Lids

step 5 dg

Tightline your eyes with black eyeliner (i.e. line the area between your eyelashes and eyeballs). Then apply the black eyeliner to your waterline. You could do a more dramatic eyeliner if you want, but this is what suits my eye shape the best. I am using Make up For Ever Aqua Eyes in Matte Black.



Step 6: Lower Lashline

lower lash line

step 6a

Pick up Peach Fuzz (color 1) on a smudge brush and apply all over the lower lashline.


Step 6B

Apply Malted Milk Ball (number 2) to the outer 2/3 of the lower lashline using your smudger brush.


step 6 C

Using a damp flat liner brush, pick up Bubblegum (color 3) and press into the outer 2/3 of lashline. You will probably need to go over the same area twice to get the color built up appropriately.





Finish the Look

PicMonkey Collage 1For mascara, I applied Tarte’s Lights, Camera, Lashes.

desert glam finished

PS I LOVE what this did for my hazel eyes. I also feel obligated to say that I self-tanned in between the top photo and when I shot this tutorial.

Empties & Favorites — Vol 2!

products cinco de mayoI decided to forgo doing my April favorites since my bag of empties was literally overflowing and I wanted to review these products before someone went on a cleaning spree and chucked them all on accident (if we’re being honest, between myself and my hubs there is only one of us who ever goes on a cleaning spree…and it is not me). We’ve got quite a few hits, a couple misses, and everything in between–Let’s get to it!

Lush Brazened Honey Fresh Face Mask ($6.95/2.1 oz; Disclaimer: they are preservative free and only last ~1 month) This mask, so far, is my favorite of Lush’s Fresh Face masks. It has a nice fragrance due to the honey in the product. I have oily/acne-prone skin and this mask did a great job of taming the oiliness, without overdoing it and creating dryness.  I don’t think I had a single breakout while I used this! It’s a hit!

Lush Ayesha Fresh Face Mask ($6.95/2.1 oz; Disclaimer: these are preservative free and only last ~1 month) I bought and used this mask after my skin was angry, red, and broken out all over from another product during the winter. It is marketed for mature and tired skin, and even though I’m only 29, I would say I noticed a great difference in my skin after using this. It calmed my redness, my breakout resolved, and my skin just looked healthy and fresh. The only downside I would mention: It does not smell great, I think it’s because of the asparagus in the mask (for real). It’s a hit!

Not Your Mother’s Clean Freak Dry Shampoo ($6.19/7 oz) This dry shampoo does a great job of absorbing oiliness and extending time in between regular shampoos (I only wash ~3x per week, so a good dry shampoo is always needed). Using it pretty much daily, it lasted 3 months. It does have a pretty severe white-cast, but I actually tend to use my dry shampoos at night, so by the morning all the oil has been absorbed and any white-cast is no more. That being said, I don’t think it’s a great option if you’re using dry shampoo to help create texture. The smell is alright. Considering the very low cost and how long the product lasts, I will definitely repurchase. It’s a hit!

miss manga brushL’Oreal Voluminous Miss Manga Mascara ($7.99) I was really excited about this mascara because everyone on YouTube was raving about it. Anytime people are getting excited about an affordable product, I’m on board! I was so disappointed though…it was so clumpy it was unusable. Spider lashes are not my thing. I think it had more to do with the brush than the mascara formula. I was looking through reviews on Ulta, and I wouldn’t say my complaint is isolated. Definitely a fail.


Lancome Genifique Yeux Light Pearl Eye Illuminating Youth Activating Concentrate ($69/0.67 oz) Besides legitimately having the longest name of any product I’ve ever used, this is a great eye serum. It was great for my puffy bags under the eyes and dark circles when I maybe didn’t get enough sleep or was feeling sick. The metal teardrop applicator also feels great on tired or puffy eyes because it stays nice and cool. For the price, I would actually say it’s a pretty good value–it lasted 6 months of twice daily use. It’s a hit!

Juicy Couture Juicy Couture Perfume ($72/1.7 oz) There is a little part of me that was embarrassed to buy this…but I actually loved the fragrance after I had received a sample and tried it on vacation. I could see it being a little heavy for some, but I love it and as long as you’re judicious with how much you use, it’s perfect. It has musk, vanilla, and floral notes. It’s romantic & sexy–definitely a more night-time fragrance. It’s a hit!

Ole Henriksen Grease Relief Cleansing Cloths: Oil Free Pore Refining ($15/30 cloths) I am fully aware it is nutty to spend $15 on face wipes. Nonetheless, these are my favorite. My makeup artist used them when we did our trial run for my wedding makeup and I knew I had to pick them up. They are refreshing and dry up any oiliness you have. My skin felt fantastic afterwards! They also did a great job removing makeup. My husband would steal them too and really loved how they made his skin feel too. When I go to grad school, this will probably be the first “luxury” purchase that goes away, but if you can afford them, they’re fantastic. It’s a hit!

products ive used up elnett

L’Oreal Elnett Satin Extra Strong Hold Hairspray ($14.99/11oz) This is a holy grail for many blogger and YouTubers and is for me as well. The hold is fabulous without being crunchy. The scent is great. You don’t need much either, so although it is definitely more expensive than some drugstore hairsprays, it will last you ages. It’s a hit!

The Body Shop Spa Wisdom Afrique Ximenia & Salt Scrub ($28/13.5oz)  There must have been a deal on this, because there is no way in God’s green earth that anyone should spend so much on a body scrub. For me, this was not something I’ll repurchase. I like my scrubs pretty rough and I felt this scrub was too gentle. The salt in it was very fine, so I didn’t actually feel exfoliated. It is very moisturizing, however. The fragrance is very mild. I wouldn’t say the product is a fail–it’s just not for me. If you are need a very mild exfoliant, this might be a good option!

Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder ($37/1 oz) Another holy grail product for many, myself included. This powder blends and absorbs seamlessly. It photographs well (some white powders can really reflect the light in flash photos, which looks really weird). This one container lasted me for-ev-ver. I have had it for at least 2 years. It’s a hit!


Favorites!! Since I’m not doing a “monthly favorites” this month for beauty,  I wanted to include a few other great products that made my day this month!

Favorite Gluten-Free Product: Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 Baking Flour Gluten Free I have Celiac Disease, and while I do my best to really not make this blog about that, I do feel like I need to look out for my Celiac homies when I find a good product. This flour is a great substitute. I have used it both in specifically GF recipes and subbed it into non-GF recipes without any problems. It’s also very affordable. I have found a 5 lb bag for $15 at my local grocer’s, which is MUCH cheaper than anything else out there.

Favorite Song: Rachel Platten “Fight Song” This song recently came through on my Pandora while I was out on a long run and it is the perfect workout song. I am always adding to my marathon playlist and this song is definitely on it!


That’s it for my empties/favorites! What products have you used up that you loved?