January was a really big month for me, beauty-wise. Most importantly, I started this blog! Reviewing collections and creating looks from them has given a structure to the way I do my make up. Instead of a what color do I wear today free-for-all, if I’m ever stumped for a day’s look, I can just choose from the collection I’m working on. Limiting my choices has stretched my creativity and is actually a ton of fun! I keep the colors of the current collection in mind and am coming up with new ways to combine them all the time. I also joined /r/indiemakeupandmore on reddit, which pulled me even farther down the indie rabbit hole, and gave me a community of people to talk to about my indies. (Which is good, cuz while he’s a great listener, my husband doesn’t have much to say on the topic.) It’s also led to my indie products featuring much more heavily in my rotation. I don’t think there’s been a day since I joined that there hasn’t been indie something or other on my face. So, now let’s take a look at the month as a whole.
Looks: I put 15 different looks up on the blog this month. Five were FOTDs, 5 were from the Tributes Collection and 5 were from the Musicians collection. I got more comfortable with red eyeshadow, which I’m starting to love. I even tried a couple of smoky eyes and wore bold lipstick once a week, which had been a goal of mine. My favorite looks are shown above. Because I’m me, all but one has winged liner. I love me some winged liner. From left to right:
- My day to night Tributes look with Baker’s Boy, Wildflowers, Ever in Your Favor and Mockingjay.
- My silver and navy winged look with Huntress and Rebellion from the Tributes collection, my husband’s favorite.
- My sparkly turquoise all-Shiro look with Diamonds, Cake and Steve, the first FOTD I posted.
- My red and gold Gryffindor look with Vivaldi, Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninoff from the Musicians collection.
- My pinky-neutral Musicians look with Mendelssohn, Bartok, Bach and Rachmaninoff.
Empties: These are the products I finished in January. I’ve started making a conscious effort to try to use up my samples, and I got through four of them this month.
- MAC Face & Body Foundation in N1: This is the first foundation I’ve had that’s actually the proper color for me, and I love it for that. It’s a very thin formula, which makes for light, dewy coverage, which I like, although when it’s hot it definitely needs to be set with powder. At first I applied it with my fingers like the girl at the MAC counter showed me, but I think I prefer using a buffing brush. It makes it easier to get a thinner coat. If I apply too much it can get a little itchy, but powder helps and most of the time I don’t have a problem with it. I already have a new giant-size bottle of this. Also, if you have MAC empties too, it’s worth hanging on to them, cuz there’s a program called Back to MAC where you can exchange 6 empty containers for a free lipstick.
- Urban Decay Primer Potion in Eden: This was the sample that wouldn’t end! I got over a dozen looks out of it and used it for both my swatch posts. I thought the little packet would dry up, but it didn’t. As a primer, I like it ok. It’s meant to be a “tawny matte” according to Sephora. It had a strong yellowish tone to it, and was pretty opaque. It worked fine to bring out the colors of the shadows and I don’t usually have problems with creasing, but I had to be careful around the edges, because if any of it didn’t get covered with eyeshadow, it was a noticeably different color than my skin. I don’t regret trying it, but I like sheerer primers better.
- Jack Black Double Duty Face Moisturizer: I wound up with three little sample packets of this and have been using them up. It’s slightly thicker than my usual Olay lotion, but it moisturizes well. It has a kind of generic lotiony scent, which I don’t love, since I’m used to unscented lotion on my face. I won’t buy it, but I’d choose it as a sample from Sephora again, especially cuz I can get four uses out of each packet.
- Greenwich Bay Trading Co. Fresh Milk Shea Butter Soap: I randomly picked this up at a specialty soap shop last time I was in America, but I really, really liked it. The milk scent was soft and creamy and fresh, and it was the perfect consistency for hand soap. It left my hands feeling nice. Plus the little bars were 3 for 4.25, which is a great price. I’d definitely buy this again and am looking forward to using the other scents I picked up.
- The Body Shop Satsuma Shower Gel: I love this stuff. It smells exactly like orange jello. I’m already on to my next bottle of it and have a back up for after that runs out as well.
- Lush Dirty Springwash: I really liked the sample of this I got. It’s spearminty and refreshing, which I love in a body wash. The mint feels great on my skin when it’s hot. The consistency is a little thin, so you need to make sure to add lots of water to your poof to get it to bubble up, but then it cleans well. I’d consider buying this.
- Mint Chapstick: I have used countless tubes of this. It’s been my go-to lip balm for years, but lately I’ve been wishing it was more moisturizing and more strongly scented. I’ll use the rest of the tubes I have, but I’ve got a lot of indie balms coming to me to see if I can find something better.
- The Body Shop Glazed Apple Body Butter: I got a sample of this and used it on my hands and feet. I like the Body Shop’s body butters as a before-bed lotion, but I didn’t care for this scent, even though I’m usually a fan of apple. This was too sweet and artificial (but not in a fun tart apple candy way) and also weirdly floral. Not a fan. If you like the scent, it does stick around a long time, though.
Orders: I ordered from eight different shops during January. Yay for spending Christmas money! I’ve got new eyeshadow brands, a ton of indie lip balms, a couple lipsticks, some bath stuff and my first indie perfumes coming. I’m most excited about my Baroque Eyeshadows, Haus of Gloi Pink Champagne-scented things and Ten Three Labs Salve Sticks, but something else could turn out to be my surprise favorite. You’ll just need to wait and see.
Next Month: In February I’ll continue to post a mix of random FOTDs and looks centered around a theme. However, in addition to looks using only eyeshadows from a single collection, I’ll also be posting looks that show different ways of using the same eyeshadow. I’ve also got a couple of tutorials focused on the type of super basic stuff that baffled me when I first started taking make up seriously. I’m really excited for it. In my quest to expand the kinds of make up I’m comfortable with (and so my blog’s not just a never ending stream of winged eyeliner and sheer lipstick), I want to do a few halo eyes and wear a bright lip color once a week. And, inspired by my accidental Gryffindor look, I’ll post looks for the other three Harry Potter Houses as well.
How’d January go for you? Do you have any beauty goals for February?