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Helloooo everyone! Oh wow, it's been almost a year since I last posted! How have you all been?! A lot has changed for me obviously but one thing that remains certain is that I always knew that I was going to come back to blogging again! I just didn't know it was going to take this long. :) The past year I've been focusing solely on improving the condition of my skin by using quality skincare products, wearing very little makeup, and being a little less experimental with new makeup! I think I just wanted to give my skin a little break from testing new things all the time. Now my skin is no where near what I still want it to be but it is so much healthier and I feel so much better and more confident leaving the house without any makeup on. I plan to write up a post on how I take care of my skin but that will have to be for another day.
For now, let's have a look at some of the things I've been loving for the first month of 2017! :)
Estée Lauder Micro Essence Skin Activating Treatment Lotion
Estée Lauder Micro Essence Skin Activating Treatment Lotion has been my skin saver for the last few months! I wasn't even planning on buying it but I was running out of my ANR (pictured on the right) and I happened to find the duo set at the airport duty free. I honestly didn't expect to see any improvement from such a clear, liquidy lotion, but only after a few weeks, I noticed my skin becoming brighter and clearer! And may I say more glowy, too! People close to me also noticed the change and this lotion was the only thing I added to my skincare routine. It's marketed as an “essence-in-lotion” but it's basically a clear essence to me. I suppose you can use a cotton pad with it but I prefer to just put a few drops in my palm then rub my hands together and spread it on my face directly. It absorbs instantly and leaves nothing but suppleness on the skin. No greasy or drying feeling afterwards. Then I follow with my ANR. This powerhouse combo has done wonders to improve my complexion and I don't think I'll ever be without either of them! I know people are crazy about the SK-II Facial Treatment Essence but I personally can't stand the smell. For anyone who feels the same, I highly recommend the Estée Lauder Micro Essence as an alternative! :)
Tarte Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Eyeshadow Palette
As I mentioned above, I've been a little less experimental with makeup so most of the time these days you'd only see me in “classic colors”. Neutrals, light brown, peachy, warm pink, champagne — these are basically my go-to colors for eyes. I consider the Tarte Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Eyeshadow Palette one of my staples. The colors are goof proof as they coordinate well among each other. Basically you can just throw any one color on your lids and be done. No brain power required (exactly what I need). My favorite colors are Force of Nature and Natural Beauty. Texture-wise, these are some of the best-performing shadows in my experience. Wonderfully creamy and blendable. For anyone looking for a palette full of suitable colors for every occasion, you might not want to miss this one!
theBalm DownBoy and FratBoy Shadow/Blush
I've also been shopping my own stash a lot! I actually re-discovered so many items that I used to love but never got to use them as much as I'd like (because as a beauty blogger, you quickly move on to trying new things all the time). theBalm Shadow/Blush is one such product. DownBoy is a brightening, milky baby pink while FratBoy is a coral-peachy. Both are matte colors with texture that is very easy to apply and blend out. DownBoy is especially my favorite as it seems to add a hint of subtle glow just enough to brighten up my face in the most lovely way. It truly is a safe, easy, and happy color for me. :)
Yves Saint Laurent Baby Doll Kiss & Blush Lips & Cheeks
I wasn't too crazy about the YSL Baby Doll Kiss & Blush Lips & Cheeks when they launched but they grew on me as I continue using them. The 3 colors pictured here are the more “peachy-coral” tones of the bunch which complement my basic eye colors really well. (I have really just been so into peachy tones lately!) The color may seem so bright in the container but I find that once it's spread on the skin (and lips), it has a tendency to sheer out quite a lot. On cheeks, it performs well in terms of longevity and color clarity. On lips, it doesn't seem to stay on well unless you prime your lips with a thick coat of lip primer or concealer first. The consistency is neither liquidy or thick but somewhere in between. It has a bit of a mattifying and silicone-y feel which aids in spreadability. It isn't drying on the cheeks in any way but on the lips, it is just a little. Apart from the luxurious, packaging, it features the signature YSL mango scent, too (that I can't seem to get enough of!).
Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real! BIG Sexy Lip Kit
You know what I've realized about myself as a makeup lover? I think I am the biggest Benefit Cosmetics fan! I bet I have about 90% of their makeup sitting in my stash. ^_^” I wasn't planning to of course but it just happened. Most people think of nothing but only quirky, gimmicky packaging when it comes to Benefit but I have to say I have come across some really excellent products from them over the years! Their liquid tints are the bomb, no doubt. Their blushes and brow products are also fantastic. I also love their Hello Flawless Powder Foundation. And my latest crush: They’re Real! BIG Sexy Lip Kit pictured above! First, I think it's a good deal on the price. Second, the colors are great! All 4 of them are wearable in everyday life. My favorite is Revved-Up Red which is a bright but wearable red that perks up my face instantly the moment I put it on! The quality is there as well. Good pigmentation and staying power. They're designed to double as a lip liner and lipstick in one but I'm not one to line my lips with a darker shade than the rest of my lips. What I do instead is to flip the bullet and use the darker tip on the inner side of my lips to make gradient lips! Now that's more my thing. I can't wait until they launch the full line. I can already see myself collecting all the colors. :) Full review is now up, see it here!
Benefit Cosmetics the POREfessional Pore Minimizing Makeup
I usually do 5 items for my monthly favorite posts but for this month I'll have to throw in the 6th item! The POREfessional Pore Minimizing Makeup hasn't launched in the US yet but it's already available at all Benefit counters and Sephora stores in Thailand. I have only used it for about a week and I have to say I'm already a fan! Light to medium coverage with liquidy texture perfect for a normal work day. It seems to also control oil quite well. So far I'm loving it! Let me continue testing it for a few more weeks before I write up my full review. :)
BUY ▶ Thailand ฿1,300 | Sephora
Well, it's great to be back to the blogging world! But as much as I'd like to update my blog every day like I used to, I'm afraid my current schedule won't permit it. For now I can see myself putting in 1-3 new posts a week but hopefully I'll be able to do more soon! :)
So hello again and welcome back to Hello Jaa! ❤