Wowder Is Here!

Seen the memes yet?

You know – the memes where people call Glossier for the perfect-skinned; the memes where people coat themselves in Vaseline, saying "I love the newest Glossier highlight!"

Basically, what's been coming to pass is: Glossier's been criticized for appealing only to those with dry, clear skin. That their products don't suit those with more oily skin; that they're not being inclusive; that their "no-makeup makeup" only really works on one skin type.

Well, Glossier heard, & Glossier responded – in the best manner possible: by using a meme making fun of their own brand.

Two days ago, on Instagram:

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First: nice response! Light-hearted acknowlegment that yeah, maybe their products weren't for everyone – up til now. The link was wowder.net. This redirected to glossier.com/wowder, which claimed:

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A little information, a little video, & a waitlist. People complained that they couldn't stand the wait! That this was going to be Glossier's most unique product yet; a product that strayed from natural dewiness – & helped people with more oily skin control their shine.

Some of you into the beauty scene may have spotted "Wowder" in a video made by YouTuber Jackie Aina – you can watch it right here.

The video was titled: "Trying NEW Makeup! First Impressions and More." Jackie tried a host of products made by a host of brands, including Burberry, Natasha Denona – & a brand that Jackie said she could not reveal. In the description box, it says: "One of those products is a product I previously tested BEFORE agreeing to collaborate for this video. Today you'll get a sneak peak of that product!"

Jackie went on to test the "Wowder" – she used two shades: "Rich" & "Dark/Deep." Jackie said: "These powders are designed to set the makeup. They control oil, they are mattifying, they help with long wearing of makeup – BUT! These powders do not respond the same way some others do, & I'm going to show you what I mean by that."

Jackie went on to use this for her under-eye area, & also used a bit to dust all over her face. She mentioned that the product had a special brush – but used her beauty blender when applying Wowder on her under-eye area. She mentioned how neutral this powder was – no excess red or yellow under-tones. She seemed to be quite happy with her results, by the end.

For Glossier to send a product to Jackie Aina to test out speaks volumes. She's an extremely popular YouTuber – but she's "different." By different, I mean: She's not afraid to speak her mind about certain brands & their questionable ethics; she's not afraid to call out brands for their lack of shade diversity; she makes videos with a full face of cruelty-free makeup, or a full face of makeup made by black businesses.

Basically – Jackie is a hilarious, talented, politically correct YouTuber – & I trust her because of her unapologetic reviews. She's extremely open – so for her to say such positive things about Wowder? Again, it speaks volumes.

Right off the bat, this told me that Wowder would be good for those with oily skin, & there would be shades that would suit women of color – yes, even dark-skinned women of color. Great! I was a bit apprehensive, though – would I like Wowder? I have dry skin; I have pale skin. I love highlight & I love looking dewy. Would Wowder appeal to me?

Well, I got to find out a bit sooner than the rest of you. Full disclosure: I am a Glossier Rep, & while I am not paid for this review (or giving this information) I have been sent Glossier products in the past & continue to get sent new products if I make sales quotas as a rep. I was lucky enouh to make my quota (thanks to all of you!) & I got a mysterious email a few weeks ago, from "The Wowder Team."

I wanted to make sure that it wasn't spam, so I reached out to my wonderful community director. I got a winky face, & a bit of a tongue-in-cheek confirmation. Low & behold – my Wowder arrived about 5 days ago, & I have been testing it ever since I got it (quietly, that is). Let's take a look at my first impression photos. First: a letter to me from The Wowder Team:

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Basically: identities were revealed, & there was a box that I was extremely excited to open.

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As you can see, I got "Light/Medium." I was…extremely apprehensive about getting this shade. Turns out – this is the lightest one! & it suits me beautifully. Why? Well, turns out it's actually okay to have a powder that is slightly darker (or the same shade) as your skin, as long as it's neutral. For me, in fact, choosing a powder that is my exact foundation shade could be detrimental if I happened into a paparazzi event – the flashback would be terrible. Should I say James Charles terrible?

My point is – no one's face is "HD-white" – not even me, whitest of whites. So – we start with the lightest shade, which is "Light-Medium." Then there is "Rich" & "Dark/Deep," the shades Jackie used combined. The shades are sheer, so they are adaptable. They're not necessarily universal, but these three shades will cover the whole range of skin tones – becaues of the neutral undertones the powders possess.

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I was a bit suspicious of the color of the powder – & how it would look on my skin – but I had (& still do have) faith in Jackie Aina, so I persisted.

I don't use under-eye concealer, so I don't set my undereyes. I decided to be creative – that's what Glossier's all about, right??? I decided to use it in place of a "face makeup" aside from concealer. So, basically, I used a bit of Tarte's Shape Tape Concealer in Fair or Glossier's Stretch Concealer in Light for spot coverage/coverage in the middle of my face. Then, I would lightly buff Wowder over my forhead, center of my face, & other areas I might want to cover.

Wowder is truly amazing. Take it from an oily-skinned, extremely famous YouTuber like Jackie Aina – & a quiet, dry-skinned, not-famous-at-all writer (????) like me. We both love Wowder! We use different shades, & we use it in different ways – but we both love it.

I've found that Wowder has a blurring effect. It definitely prevents flashback in photos. It's almost like a filter when you wear it. It's buildable – I could see myself wearing Wowder, & Wowder only – I like it best, however, in the way I have been using it the past few days.

What're some other fun facts about Wowder? Read away:

  • Contains diamond powder for dimension; no flat effect here! & no, don't believe the people on Reddit – diamond dust does not hurt your skin
  • It has an airy, weightless formula – it absorbs oil, but vanishes into skin (this is why it's great for all skin types)
  • The "trampoline mesh" that keeps the powder safe = no mess packaging. It's easy to shake out a little; it's equally easy to make sure you're not wasting product, either.

"Does it come with the brush?" 

According to Glossier, the Wowder Brush was "specifically designed to work with Wowder" (I would hope, anyway!!!). The bristles are very soft, but they're also dense – great for a powder like Wowder, or even for a more intense powder highlight. Its shape makes it easy to buff Wowder all over the face, or focus on smaller areas: like under-eyes. Glosser: "The Wowder Brush ($20 USD, $25 CAD) & Wowder ($22 USD, $27 CAD) were invented to work together, so we've made you The Wowder Duo PDP - this includes Wowder & the Wowder brush, which total to $35 USD or $45 CAD. In both currencies, you'll save $7 by buying the duo.

Don't want a powder, but want the brush? The Wowder Brush is available separately! Don't want the brush, but want the powder? Wowder is available separately!

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Is dewy OUT now? Is Glossier being trendy by switching things up? Will they maintain their relevance?

I'm biased – but I think Glossier's here to stay. They're reaching out to more people by releasing Wowder. Now, people with oily skin; people who enjoy a matte finish; people who retweeted or reblogged the Glossier memes (!!) will start looking at Glossier with a more serious eye. Glossier itself said:

"Fresh, real skin is what we’re known for, and Wowder is an extension of that. Still healthy and glowing, but matte where you want it—no more shiny t-zone. We aren’t backpedaling on the dewy look that’s core to our brand (dewy isn’t dead!

we love dewy!). Makeup is a choice. Choose your finish."

Choose your shade. Choose your finish. Choose the way you want to do makeup – or not! I'm here for it – & I never thought I would say that I love a powder as much as I love this one! But I really do. I might be switching my CC Creams out for Wowder & a little concelaer on extra hot, sweaty days. I think my skin will thank me. But now, I can choose a finish – & still shop with one of my favorite brands.

As I type this, Wowder is now available, & you can get it here!!! Get it! tell me what you think. I can't wait to here your opinions on Glossier's latest – & most unique (for them, anyway) product. & while you're waiting for your shipping, here's a few photos of me rocking Wowder last night:

But it comes down to this: if you follow me on social, or if you read this blog, chances are that you have dry/sensitive skin, & you might not normally wear powder. Are you worried about using a powder?

Remember this (while checking out on Glossier.com with your Wowder Duo):

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Love,
Sof ❤

The Lip Trio I’ve Been Loving Lately

"Blurry lips" have had a bit of a moment this summer. Whether it's dabbing a bit of creamy lipstick into the center of your lips & patting it outwards or carefully dropping a red, ink-like substance into your lips – I say into because it literally sinks into your lips as you watch – waiting in satisfaction for the slight blur it provided the outer lines lines of your lips.

Blurry lips look effortless, easy, & windswept. They look beautiful on days out; they look sexy when paired with a good liner & mascara. They can be done all kinds of ways. Here's a look I've been loving lately:

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This is the easy, care-free, blurry look I'm going for. However – I was about to go out for the evening when I snapped this photo. I had to make sure my lips would last at least an hour or two – it's no use to keep applying a product that simply flies off in thirty minutes or less.

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To make sure my lips stayed blurry…but also stayed in place, I took a few extra measures here. I used the Stila Lush Lips Water Plumping Primer Stila Lush Lips Water Plumping Primer – described as a "two-in-one aqua balm treatment and primer to keep lips looking and feeling full and plump." I don't think this is necessary if you don't struggle with dry or chapped lips; this is a product I use simply because it's like a lip balm underneath a lipstick or liner – without the greasiness. This one melts into my lips, & makes sure they have enough hydration to keep on a lip color without flaking or feathering. I don't think it's a "necessary" product & I have done many a look without this…but if you struggle with chapped lips, this is a nice primer for you.

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For a little definition, I used MAC's Lip Pencil in Burgundy. I know there's a lot of controversy over buying MAC, & I understand why; this pencil was purchased before I did research on brands, so I do still use it. To replace this one, though, I'll probably get Urban Decay's 24/7 Glide-On Lip Pencil in the shade Blackmail. The liners are very similar in effect & quality, & Urban Decay is a 100% cruelty-free option.

When I apply the liner, I'm not 100% precise with it; I'll make some areas a bit darker & others a bit lighter. I just make sure to define my cupid's bow & the lower bottom lip. Everything else is fair game. I blot the liner over with my finger before I use Glossier's Generation G Lipstick in Jam – my favorite shade, besides Zip. Jam is a great autumn/winter shade because it can be built down to a quite dark, berry, "jammy" shade. It's also gorgeous during the summer when lightly patted into the lips – which is exactly what I did for this look. It glosses over the feathered look the liner gives; softens some harshness. Then you're ready for the final step!

I used the Milk Makeup Oil Lip Stain in the shade Feelz to finish off my look. This product is very self-descriptive; the oil gives a good bit of sheen to the lip; it is not, however, glossy or sticky. This sheen eventually gracefully fades into the color already onto the lip. It's beautiful by itself; I also love using it as a lip topper. Whether sheen or matte, this product is a great finishing touch & ensures the color will stay for hours – thanks to the "stain" in the actual name of the product.

 

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I've swatched all three of the lip colors used on my hand below. I love this plummy shade at all times of the year; it just depends on how heavy a hand you want to use, really. I love using these products alone or combined – all three or just one. They're great products – all three are super easy to apply…even if you use more than one.

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The end result is slightly sexy, illusion-of-wine-stained lips. I like pairing it with a few sweeps of reddish-bronze eyeshadow. It looks sleepy – again, we're going with the effortless theme, remember? It's summer.

What's your favorite summer lip/eye/cheek? Tell me about it!

Love,

Sof ❤

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#FindYourLight: All About Glossier’s Haloscope Highlight & What It Does (& Doesn’t Do)

It’s been more than a year now since Glossier pulled their first corporate “Beyoncé” & released their highlight, called Haloscope, into the wild.

It made perfect sense at that time – strobing was in, “glowing to the gods” & “highlight so blinding you can see it from space” was the kind of aesthetic people were trying to achieve. So, of course Glossier would launch a highlight around that time.

Like most things Glossier, Haloscope is effective without being over the top, beautiful without being gaudy, simple without being dull. It just…is. Haloscope is the highlight you can carry in your bag (however big or small) when you don’t have time to finish getting ready in the comfort of your own home. It’s the highlight you can wear to work or school without getting that “well, that’s a lot of makeup!” – but it’s also the highlight you can apply with a heavier hand for that evening summer (or winter) party. It’s practical, it’s elegant, it’s perfect.

Glossier first started out their Haloscope campaign with two shades: Quartz, described as “a universally flattering, pearlescent glow,” & Topaz, “a healthy, sun-kissed glow.” They were marketed for being flattering on all skin tones & types, for being easy, for being enhancing, nourishing, & easy (before I get into product description, let’s finish with the last shade, shall we?).

Glossier then released a “limited edition” Haloscope in the shade Moonstone, described as “an opalescent glaze.” It only came in the 2016 Black Tie Holiday Set – you couldn’t get it as an individual item. But then…people loved Moonstone so much (people like me) that Glossier officially made Moonstone a permanent part of the Haloscope collection in March.

So, here we are, in July! A year & one month after Haloscope first launched. So…why am I talking about it again? This is kind of old news, after all.

Well, it’s mostly because Glossier revamped their Haloscope campaign – two new gorgeous girls, lots of swatches on different skin tones, &, best of all, a “space theme” – something I find ironic, given all the overboard comments on “highlight from space,” etc.

Now, on Glossier’s home page, you can find this:

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So, we have the “best in the universe” thing playing with the “universal shades.” Clever! But…do all three really work on all skin tones? Having tried all three, I’ll go with “yes.”

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From left to right: Topaz, Quartz, & Moonstone
I’m not the only one who thinks all three shades are universally flattering. Take it from Kim Johnson, Glossier’s Community Manager: she was featured on Into The Gloss last December, demonstrating how she uses all three Haloscope shades – at once – to amp up her look for a night out. According to Kim:

“I highlight with Haloscope in Quartz, Topaz, aaand Moonstone. Yes, I use all three shades of highlighter. They’re like children—how can you possibly love one more than the other? Answer: You can’t. I apply Topaz on the sides of my nose and blend outward for the sunburnt look and in a line on my cheekbone right above where I’ve just contoured. I follow up with Quartz down the bridge of my nose, on the cupid’s bow and in the corners of my eyes and finish off with Moonstone in a half halo above the Topaz towards my brow bone. Blend it all out with your fingers and boom (read the complete feature here).

My kind of gal! I’m not a bronzer person – & I never will be. Okay, sometimes I’ll use a little bit during the summer…but it never feels quite right on me. More often than not, I’ll end up regretting a bronzer purchase (& I only have two), & wish I spent it on a highlight instead.

So, do I have all three at home with me right now? This very moment? Sadly, no. I have Quartz & Moonstone still in stock – Topaz ran out a while ago. I will be repurchasing it, however, after this campaign brought back to mind how all three Haloscopes can be the only makeup you wear (other than a skin tint or foundation). For example: Topaz as a bronzer, Quartz as a highlight, & Moonstone on the lids, inner corners of the eyes, & browbone. Done. Glowy, slightly flushed, & extremely effortless.

Now, for some examples: the new campaign girls, wearing (all three) Haloscope shades.

Moonstone:

Quartz:

Topaz:

As you can see, they all look really good. Both of these models have drastically different undertones & skin tones – but Haloscope still works its magic. I really don’t know how it works so well – someone as fair as me would usually steer very clear of a shade as dark as Topaz – but it just does.

Maybe some of the magic is due to its formula. I remember being verrryyy skeptical about the formulation of Haloscope when it was first released. As you can see in the photograph below, Haloscope has an outer halo, & an inner ring:

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Haloscope’s construction
The outer core is infused with genuine crystal extracts – either Rose Quartz or Golden Topaz, depending on the shade you choose – which is what gives Haloscope its glow, sheen, & its all-day staying power. The inner core (what looks like a lip balm) is a solid oil core of vitamin-rich moisturizers: Coconut, Castor Seed, & Sweet Almond oils.

Yup. Coconut oil.

I actually cringed when I saw that this is what half of the highlight was composed of – I’ve always been more than a little afraid of putting coconut oil on my face (it’s comedogenic…for me, at least) so this was a big balking point for me. When I ordered my first Haloscope in June of last year (shade: Quartz) I hurried around my house, worrying that the oils would melt the highlight before it got to me – or, even worse, that the oils would mess up my skin.

Neither happened. My Haloscope arrived, safe & sound, & I tentatively swiped it on my cheekbone. Then swiped again. I checked for a yellow/orange undertone – something I can occasionally get when working with a champagne-y color. Not there. I went out for the day, checking my reflection every once & a while. Still on. Still on. Still on. It stayed the whole day – despite the heat, despite my doubts, despite the coconut oil (seriously…still can’t figure that one out).

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Okay, so enough about the product information: What do I personally love about Haloscope?

Several things. One: the stick formula. Anything in a little tube or stick (ex. Cloud Paint or Haloscope) makes life a lot easier. Haloscope’s stick packaging allows me to very quickly swipe on the day’s glow & run out the door – great for when I don’t have much time but still want to look awake & put-together. It allows me to throw one in my bag, to dab on the center of my lids if I’m going out right after an evening class & don’t have time to go back home to amp up my makeup. It gives me a very dewy, glowy finish without having to layer a bunch of powders. Basically: it’s a very subtle strobe (or medium, depending on how much product/how many shades you use) that never looks sweaty – or powdery! It doesn’t fade out to sheer glitter, like so many cream or stick highlights – thanks, moisturizing inner core! Best of all, there are now three glowy, gleaming shades – all of them multi-purpose. I’m going to have to snatch up Topaz soon, & finally complete my trio. As for right now, check out the swatches (one swipe each!) of the two Haloscopes currently on my makeup table

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Moonstone on the left, quartz on the right. As you can see, Moonstone has a sheerer, more transluscent finish, & is also cooler. Quartz is more opaque, more golden; I’d call it a light champagne. I love wearing both of these on a daily basis!
So, once again, Glossier proved to me that I could do it! I can wear orange blush (thanks, Cloud Paint in Beam), I can wear a highlighter that has coconut oil in it without a hint of a clogged pore or a blemish.

I don’t usually talk as much about Glossier’s makeup products as I do their skincare products. That’s on me! There’s more than Boy Brow going on at Glossier’s labs – so let me start with reintroducing you to Haloscope.

Oh – & if you’re unsure where exactly to apply Haloscope…don’t worry. You can put it pretty much anywhere (that’s what I do), but if you really want to know the best places, Glossier has it mapped out for you:

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Gleam on!

Love,

Sof ❤

Shop all Glossier here! P.S.: Me this past weekend, wearing Haloscope in Quartz on my cheekbones, browbone, & inner corners of my eyes✨

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Some SPFs That Will Keep You Cute & Safe This Summer

Happy official summer, everyone! Now that we’ve had our first global heatwave (hello, reminder that the planet is getting warmer), it’s truly time to get serious about sun protection.

Yeah, I was joking about the planet getting warmer (except not really…because it is), but it’s no laughing matter. As summers (& winters) get warmer, we lose the protection of the ozone layer, which makes us more susceptible to UV rays – which cause cancer. Sun burn is bad, & cancer is worse. Of course, we’re all at risk for skin cancer – but making an effort to wear SPF on your body & face every. Single. Day. Will drastically reduce that risk.

So! I’ve already posted about a few sunscreens & SPF products, but here’s an even long lineup. Some of them are just plain old sunscreen; some of them are CC cream-type products; one is even a moisturizer that contains SPF. Two in one, perfect for those lazy summer days. I hope one (or more!) of these suit you, & even if none of these are particularly appealing…please wear sunscreen every day! You’re doing your own body a huge, huge favor.

SPF Products With No Tint 

These will give you sun protection with no tint, coverage…whatever you want to call a foundation product! Just plain old sunscreen kind of SPFs.

Dr. Jart Every Sun Day UV Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50

Dr. Jart is, all around, a very solid brand. It’s K-Beauty at its finest (check out their Beauty Balm, their Ceramidin line, & their rubber masks if you want to be blown out of the water). This isn’t my favorite product of theirs, but its a product my mama purchased for me when we found out my new meds would increase my sensitivity to the sun. SPF 50 is about as powerful as it gets! There’s some debate over whether an SPF 50 is truly more effective than an SPF 35, but if you’re paranoid about being protected, go with the 50 & your mind will be at ease. This is a physical sunscreen, so its active ingredients are zinc oxide & titanium dioxide – ingredients that sometimes leave a white cast or a tacky feel. On my skin, I haven’t had either of these issues with this product. Just remember I have fair skin, so this sunscreen might leave a white cast on those with deeper skin tones (feel free to comment below if you’ve tried this sunscreen – or any of the others – & what your experience with it has been).

This sunscreen has a slight sunscreen-y smell, which I don’t like. At the same time…it is a sunscreen…plus, it has powerful SPF, doesn’t break me out, & leaves no stickiness or white cast. The price is reasonable for the amount you get (& the strength of the SPF). If you’re a fan of Dr. Jart’s products & aren’t wary of physical sunscreens, I’d say give this one a go! Even though most physical sunscreens are a hit or miss for me, I’ve had no issues with this one.

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The Every Sun Day Sunscreen – with simple (yet elegant) packaging, a trademark of Dr. Jart products
Glossier Invisible Shield Daily Sunscreen SPF 35

One of the newer sunscreens to hit the market, the Glossier Invisible Shield is a chemical sunscreen – that means that it does not contain zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, the ingredients that are classically found in a physical sunscreen. This also means that it leaves no white cast, even on the deepest of skin tones. Glossier made this clear by casting a dark-skinned model in their Invisible Shield campaign.

I enjoy this sunscreen a good deal! It has a pleasant smell (citrusy), so if you’re bothered by the “sunscreen smell” this is a good option for you. It’s super lightweight – the texture reminds me of Drunk Elephant’s B-Hydra Gel – so I like putting it on if I’ll be wearing a full face of makeup. It sinks right in & I know that it won’t interfere with how my makeup sits on my face. You’re getting less product than the Dr. Jart sunscreen for about the same price (Dr. Jart’s is 1.7 fl. oz.; Glossier’s is 1 fl. oz.), but if you’re looking for a sunscreen that definitely won’t clog your pores or feel sticky/heavy on your skin, it’s worth it, in my opinion. Not my favorite Glossier product, but it’s a sunscreen that’s worth mentioning, especially for readers who have deeper skin tones.

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Glossier Invisible Shield – a step away from their classic #millennialpink packaging (the classic “G” logo remains on the top of the product’s cap)
Farmacy Green Screen Daily Environmental Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 30

I own three of Farmacy’s products (this one, the Honey Potion mask, & their Green Clean double cleanser) & have nothing bad to say about any of them. This is also a physical sunscreen, so it does contain titanium dioxide & zinc dioxide, but I get no stickiness, white cast, or sunscreen-y smell from this product. It’s a slightly lower SPF than the Glossier one, & significantly lower than the Dr. Jart, so this might be a reason for its lack of sunscreen-y scent. It’s also worth noting that it’s in the same price range as the Dr. Jart & Glossier – but has slightly lower SPF.

Still, I have nothing bad to say about this! It claims to be non-greasy &, interestingly, says it helps with fading dark spots. It’s definitely non-greasy, & I really enjoy the scent of the product; it’s super fresh. Another defense for the price of this product is that it’s cruelty-free & formulated with all-natural ingredients (side note: Glossier is also cruelty-free). &…I do think it helps fade dark spots – at least, the ones that you get from blemishes. I noticed a decrease in dark spots after I used this 5-6 times. It’s also great for sensitive skin – actually, all of Farmacy’s products are. I think it’s even less sticky than the Dr. Jart one (which isn’t sticky at all) & I enjoy the smell of this one a lot, too – which says something, since I usually despise the scent of most physical sunscreens. I’d say grab a sample & see how it feels! I have nothing bad to say – & you’re paying for 1.7 fl. oz rather than 1 fl. oz (which is what you get from Glossier Invisible Shield). Plus, it’s 100% organically-sourced & cruelty-free.

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Farmacy’s Green Screen – I like the packaging! It’s similar to the Honey Potion face mask – both have a wooden cap/top
Origins A Perfect World™ SPF 40 Age-Defense Moisturizer with White Tea 

Full disclosure (as always!!): I got this sent to me by Origins (thank you!!) & was initially skeptical. When I put it on the back of my hand, it felt too thick to be a day cream…it seemed to be more suitable for night use. However, it was contradictory – because who needs SPF at night, right? Still, Origins has never done me wrong (& yes…I’ve purchased 99% of their products myself. I’m being honest!), plus the white tea made the cream smell really good – so no sunscreen-y smell that I keep harping on about. I decided to give it a go at night, first, to see how my skin reacted to it, then if it was okay, try it during the day.

Night time = good. Day time = good. It’s not sticky at all – not even a little bit! – & leaves no white cast on my skin. It smells amazing, it’s great to use on no-makeup days…& it’s also great to use on makeup days, when I just don’t feel like putting on moisturizer & SPF. This one does it all. I love it, & will be purchasing it myself when I run out – but I don’t think I’ll need to for a while. A little goes a long way. FullSizeRender.jpg-31

SPF Products With Tint 

So…yup! These are SPF products. With tint. For days when you feel like you want face makeup, but don’t want an extra step to protect your face from the sun. But still want to protect your face from the sun.

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Erborian CC Crème – $44

I like this product pretty okay! That’s probably the best way I can describe it: pretty okay. I will say that it was an introduction to CC Creams to me. Like… the guy at Sephora patiently heard out my rant (“Nothing matches my fair skin, I’ve tried every foundation & BB cream in the book & I still end up looking orange. Or dry“) & then guided me over to K-Beauty, placed this in my hands, put it on my face, & I left with my mouth wide open. I’d never seen a product that adjusted to one’s skin tone. That blew my mind (& yes…it was in January of this year. I’m behind on this trend, I’m aware).

However…after looking into more CC cream-type products, I kind of lost my love for this one. It wasn’t a perfect match for me. Some days it would look really good; others, I kind of felt like a Mattel doll. It worked, but it didn’t move with my face. It does have SPF, yes – but it’s SPF 25. I wouldn’t feel comfortable wearing this without some extra protection. Also, this is a good product if you’re pale – but Erborian only carries two shades: Clair (my shade) & Regular. Regular is in no way a shade for deeper skin tones. It probably would suit people a few shades darker than me. Erborian in no way is covering the shade range that it should. I get that it’s a niche brand, & I get that K-Beauty doesn’t usually have darker shades…but I know of other K-Beauty brands that do. So, Erborian…I love your holographic packaging, & your CC Cream works pretty well for me. But I’d love to see a larger shade range (like…come on!!) & I’d like to see you amp up that SPF a little, too. Xoxo, Gossip Girl.

CLĒ Cosmetics CCC Cream – $31

Okay…yes!!! I first heard about CLĒ through one of the Glossier girl’s Instagrams (@ceciliagorgon), & was intrigued. It’s not often you hear a girl with a deeper skin tone (I believe Cecilia wears a combo of Deep & Dark in Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint/Stretch Concealer & Medium Deep in CLĒ but I’m not positive) talking about a CC Cream, so I checked out their shade range. Muuuuchhh better than Erborian’s. I haven’t seen them on all skin tones, but CLĒ has five shades. I know I’m always going to be the lightest shade in anything, but I like to look for greater diversity in shades now that I’m reviewing things for people with various skin tones & skin types.

Another plus: the CLĒ CCC Cream (CCC is for Color Control & Change) is $31, but has SPF 45 (!!), moves more easily on my face (it becomes part of my face rather than sitting on top of it), & boasts to be an all-in-one: a foundation, primer, & sun protector. I have to say they’re right. I’ve used this with & without a primer; sure, if I want an extra glow maybe I’d use that Becca Backlight Primer – but I don’t need one for it to stay on all day. & that’s great. In short – this is cheaper, is more likely to have your shade, has higher sun protection, & sinks into your skin rather than sits on top. !!!!

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White packaging with rose-gold detailing; super simple, super elegant
CLĒ Cosmetics Essence Air Cushion – $49

For those of you who want sheer coverage but MAX sun protection! The Essence Air Cushion was the first cushion foundation product I ever tried. I really like it – especially if I combine it with another product (sometimes it’s the CLĒ CCC Cream, sometimes the Glossier Skin Tint, sometimes the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer…it depends!), as it gives sheer coverage & sun protection without feeling sticky. This is so blendable that it’s guaranteed you’ll never have a “foundation line.” It comes in 4 shades – one less than the CCC Cream, has SPF 50, &, yes, you might be gasping at the high price tag – but that’s because the cushion comes with one compact already filled & a refill in a sealed bag. Essentially, you’re getting two products (& you can purchase cushion refills only – without getting rid of your packaging! here).

This won’t give you as much coverage as the CCC Cream. I’d say it’s somewhere between a CC/BB cream & the Glossier Skin Tint (if you know how that works) for a coverage reference. But…this is a great product for summer. It’ll even out your skin, give you enough coverage not to worry about redness or uneven skin, & protect your skin from the rays to the max.

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An up-close look at the Essence Air Cushion – refill not pictured. Mirror in the compact, so you can apply on the go (ideal for road trips)
Dr. Jart Cicapair™️ Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment SPF 30 – $52 (or $18)

Okay. I really, really love this stuff. I love it so much. It’s probably my ideal face makeup. Not my ideal face makeup when I’m having a bad skin week, let me be honest – but if I have a little redness & maybe one or two blemishes, I use this…& only this. It smells like freshly mown grass, goes on pale green but adjusts to your skin tone (like a CC cream). Yes…it’s expensive. I got the full-size version, but after using it for a bit, I feel like I absolutely could’ve gotten the $18 0.5 fl. oz. size & been just as happy. A little goes a long way. It absolutely obliterates redness from my face (even around & under my nose, which is a problem I always have with my dry skin), &, best of all, it moves with my face – if you can’t tell by now, that’s what I always look for in a face makeup product. I never feel like I have anything on; it sinks in like a moisturizer & doesn’t highlight any dry patches, doesn’t break me out or feel sticky (despite the SPF)…it doesn’t do anything I don’t want it to do, & it does everything I do want it to do. I just wish the SPF was a little higher. But…hey. I can’t ever have a perfect face makeup product, right? (Maybe so. I’ll keep looking)

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The pale green color of the Cicapair Treatment in the jar. It seamlessly blends & melds into your own skin as you apply it (with brush or fingers)
There you have it. That’s a lot of SPF combined. In the end, I’m at the very least moderately happy (hopefully happier!) with all of the products I mentioned. Most of them I love, some of them I absolutely adore. But all of them give sun protection to your face, which is super, super important!! It’s important year-round, of course. But if you’re out tubing on a river or lake, or going on a sunrise hike, or riding a horse in the Rocky Mountains – or just sitting in your own backyard – you’ll be getting more sun than you would in the winter. So it’s crucial to keep your face shielded. Wear SPF! &, if you want to embarrass your siblings, wear a bucket hat, too!

Happy summer. I love you all!

Love,

Sof ❤

 

Two Lip Luxuries For Your Summer Pleasure (Plus One That Won’t Break The Bank)

It’s officially summer, & I’m ready for my high-cut, low-back one piece swimsuits (that probably will only make it outside once or twice) going on walks in the late evening because it’s still light & warm out, & running around in the grass barefoot.

I love spending my days either outside, or inside with my windows open. Fresh warm air makes me feel cleaner & fresher-& I love that!

This clean, fresh feeling makes me want to stick to white T-shirts, breezy printed dresses, & a no-pants policy when I’m hanging out in my house.

It also makes me want to focus more on face mask-ing & less on face makeup-ing.

To be more clear, I always like to keep it simple-but I especially love keeping it simple in the summer. My goal? As little face makeup as possible (ideally none, if my skin is looking good!) a dewy highlight, a swipe of #boybrow, a pop of glitter on my lids, &….lipsticks.

Lipsticks are my favorite part of summer makeup because they glam up everything…yet don’t add 50 more steps to your routine. Best part of a summer party? Throwing on a dress, combing out my brows, & quickly swiping on a lipstick before I walk in. I don’t have to worry about lip liner or a perfectly shaped pout-imperfection makes my summer look even better. Just the right amount of dishevelment makes you look effortlessly beautiful (& in my case I truly try to keep the level of effort at a minimum-I swear I’m not faking!)

In the summer, I think it’s worth my while to spend a little more on a lipstick, since I won’t be thinking about full-coverage foundation…liner…lashes…

In reality, I don’t really like any of those things at any time of the year. If you do, that’s fine!! But this is me telling you that it’s worth your while to spend a little extra time choosing a summer lipstick, & maybe a little extra money. If you pick the right one (or ones), it’ll serve you well throughout the season, & perhaps beyond.

So, without further ado, here are two luxurious lipsticks-& my favorite lip gloss that, if you aren’t looking to spend a lot of money, will be an amazing, glamorous, yet inexpensive addition to your beauty table.

Tom Ford Ultra Rich Lip Color in 02: “Temptation Waits” 

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Okay…admittedly, I didn’t buy this myself. I’ve purchased one other Tom Ford lipstick in the past (from the Lips & Boys collection-shade “Malik”) but one of my followers (oh so kindly!!! Thank you thank you thank you!!) emailed me a Sephora gift card so that I could give this one a try. When it arrived, I squealed. Not only did the white & gold outside packaging look like the perfect summer accessory (forget handbags; just carry this lipstick!) the color in the tube was the perfect shade. It’s a dark shade on me; could be called a nude for deeper skin tones-but the way that Tom Ford lipsticks are formulated, you can just lightly swipe the bullet over your lips for a defined yet sheer look. Like all Tom Ford’s lipsticks, it smells slightly of vanilla; enough to be pleasant, but not too strong to overwhelm any fragrance you might be wearing. As you can see in the last photo, it has a slight amount of shimmer to it, which provides a plumping, yet ethereal effect. It’s perfect.

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“Temptation Waits” out in the sun. Easy application (no mirror needed) that gives you a blurry, effortless effect. 

Dior Addict Lipstick in 561: “Wonderful”

I’m unapologetically in love with all of the Dior makeup products I’ve purchased. The Diorshow mascara made me actually like mascara, the Lip Glow Balm, Scrub, & Pomade goes everywhere with me, & their plumping gloss is another winner. Plus…the packaging. I sometimes am too weak & buy a product just because I love the packaging, but Dior has beautiful packaging & beautiful products. No buyer’s remorse for any Dior product I’ve ever purchased, ever. However-I’d never tried any of their lipsticks, & after seeing a few featured on several of my favorite Instagram stories to watch (Glossier, Into the Gloss, Man Repeller-all the greats!) I decided to make one of them my summer friends. I chose “Wonderful” because it looked like a great sheer, shimmery finish-& a pinky coral for the lips is never a bad choice in my book, especially in the summer. This one didn’t let me down. First of all…the holographic/rainbow/silver packaging is beautiful, making it not only a lipstick but also an accessory, & Dior’s signature silver knob on the end of the product makes it easy to find in your purse, pocket, or backpack. Unlike the Lip Glow collection, this lipstick doesn’t have that minty-floral scent-I really can’t detect any scent at all. This didn’t make me sad, though-the ridiculously beautiful finish & silky-smooth application more than made up for a lack of scent (& for some, lack of scent might even be a bonus). This has just the right amount of shimmer (maybe even a little glitter!) to it, & lasts a long time, slowly sinking into your lips to become more of a stain as the day goes on. Feels like a balm, looks like a lipstick. 10/10, & I’m restraining myself from running right back to grab at least two more.

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Silver-holographic packaging…
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…Containing a beautiful rosy coral (stamped with “CD”).

And now for the product that has been in my bag & on my lips (& sometimes even my eyelids) all spring. It’ll stay in my bag, & on my lips-this time, though, I’ll be making it even better by layering it over top these two lovely lipsticks.

Glossier Lip Gloss

Everyone was in an uproar when Glossier made their Clear Lip Gloss (a limited edition Holiday 2016 product) part of their permanent makeup collection. And for good reason: this lip gloss smells like heaven (just the right amount of vanilla), isn’t sticky, contains Vitamin E (making it so moisturizing that it can be used as an overnight lip mask-which I’ve also done), & best of all, it looks like a lava lamp in the packaging-full of bubbles, & that #glossierpink shade (which ends up looking transparent on the lips).

I love this gloss because 1) it has no stickiness to it whatsoever 2) it is completely clear, making it an amazing addition to whatever lipstick or liner I’m wearing that day, & 3) it is $14-instead of my other favorite lip gloss, the YSL Tint-in-Oil, which is $32.

Basically, it’s a great way to amp up your summer look. Wear a tinted balm or a sheer lipstick during the day, & if you have no time to do some serious retouching before an outdoor party, just slip this gloss in your bag at the beginning of the day. Apply in the bathroom, in your car’s rearview mirror, or just slap it on-because it won’t let you down. Ever.

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The lava lamp of glosses.
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Infinitely instagrammable (Try taking a slo-mo video. You’ll be hypnotized).

I haven’t gotten pictures from the paparazzi of me wearing Glossier’s lip gloss over Tom Ford “Temptation Awaits,” but I have managed to score a few of me wearing Dior “Wonderful” with Glossier gloss. Enjoy:

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Shiny, shiny.
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Just a light layer of Dior “Wonderful” underneath my Glossier shine.

I hope that gives you some inspiration for some summer beauty #looks that are both comfortable yet infinitely flattering! Tag me on IG with your summer beauty looks, if you wish-I’d love to see them!

Shop with me at Glossier if you’d like to get your hands on some gloss!

(Sadly, I’m a small speck of a human, not Bella or Gigi Hadid, so I don’t have discounts for Dior or Tom Ford. But thank you to the lovely, lovely human being who sent me the Tom Ford lipstick. You are too kind!)

Love,

Sof ❤

P.S. My face makeup in both pictures is Dr. Jart Tiger Grass Color Correcting Cream; highlight is Marc Jacobs Glow Stick Glistening Illuminator, mascara is Diorshow, eyeshadow is…I don’t remember! Something sparkly. Probably from Colourpop. Brows? No filter, just Glossier (Boy Brow). Both tops I’m wearing are from Urban Outfitters; my necklace & earrings are the Tiffany & Co. Paloma Picasso olive leaf collection (my parents’ graduation gift to me, & my most prized jewelry). “How did you get your hair to go back in a bun & make it look so sleek when it’s so short?” A scrunchie. Bobby pins (at least 500). & Biossance 100% Squalene Oil. & more bobby pins. & a few prayers. 

 

The Glow(s) I’ll Be Wearing All Summer

My favorite thing about makeup has to be highlight. I’m definitely not alone in that – just look at Sephora’s sales of products like Becca Champagne Pop! However, I’m starting to see less appeal in powder highlights, & go straight to the cream/liquids when I’m shopping for a new highlight (not like I need more).

Here’s why I like liquids & creams more than powders at the moment: they move with your face, so you never look frozen or cakey, they fade more gracefully, & they can give you either a super subtle look by themselves – or a blinding glow if you layer a powder on top.

Basically, cream & liquid highlights are running my summer, & here are some of my favorite picks! I swatched all of these on a clean hand – & made sure to wipe off each highlight after swatching with a cotton pad soaked in micellar water, just so you can see how the highlight truly looks on my skin tone. For reference: I’m very fair, with cool/pink undertones.

Glossier Haloscope – Moonstone

Initially part of the limited edition Glossier Black Tie Holiday 2016 Set, Haloscope in Moonstone was made permanent in March of this year. I was super happy about this! It had been a shade I’d been eyeing…but I didn’t want to shell out $50 for the whole set just for one highlight. Now, you can get Moonstone as a single item – & it’s great.

This highlight works on all skin tones (check Glossier’s Instagram page for swatches of Moonstone on a variety of skin tones!) but it gives an opalescent, subtle, glazed effect. If you’re looking for a beam that’ll reach the sun, this probably isn’t it. It looks a bit underwhelming in the tube – it is white & rather transparent, & can be a bit dull once you’ve put it directly on your cheekbones. However, once the product goes onto your face, there’s absolutely no lack of glow! I love swiping it on when I’m on the go – it compliments my undertones really well, & I like the slight blue effect it gives off on my skin. This is one of those highlights that looks very different (yet very good!) on each individual skin tone. It remains one of my favorites in Glossier’s makeup collection.

Glossier Haloscope – Quartz

One of the two original Haloscopes that dropped last summer! (The other was Topaz, a bronzy shade that works beautifully as a highlight on deeper skin tones, & as a bronzy glow on lighter skin tones). This one is still super easy for me to work with – I had some qualms, as “gold-y” tones don’t always work for my skin tone…but since this one is so sheer & dewy, it’s super easy to tap into my cheekbones, on my nose, & brow bone for a natural, healthy glow. I also love combining this either with NARS Albatross on top (for a super powerful, yellow-gold glow) or blending Quartz & Cloud Paint in Beam (my favorite Cloud Paint shade!)

Quartz has a slightly more concentrated, intense glow than Moonstone – it’s less sheer, more solid, if that makes sense. If you’re looking for something a bit more powerful than Moonstone, you’ll probably be best friends with Quartz.

Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat Strobing Highlight Pen

Okay…I have to admit it. I got this mostly for the packaging (because it truly is gorgeous). If you’ve used a Touche Eclat pen before, you’ll already know how to work this: click the bottom, kind of like any run-of-the-mill pen, & product dispenses. I was kind of disappointed in how “orange” the product seemed to be, but once I blended it out, it just kind of turned into a golden shimmer with big flecks of gold glitter.

I wouldn’t call this…a highlight. I think that’s stretching it a little. However, if you’re a fan of glitter on your face (& I am! At times…) this could be a fun splurge to use over the summer. I’ve enjoyed combining it with other highlights, as well as using it on my lids. But if you’re looking for an actual summer highlight, I wouldn’t recommend this one as your one & only. It’s more glitter, less glow.

Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops: Celestial

You know! The one that everyone was losing absolute shit over on social media last summer. I finally gave in & got Celestial, which seemed to suit my skin tone the best. I have to say – no one is exaggerating when they say this product gives an overwhelming, beaming effect. I used a pea-sized drop on the back of my hand, as you can see – & that would be more than enough to use on my cheekbones, browbones, nose, & chin – basically, with one drop, I’m all set. I do think the price point is worth it because of this. A little goes a very, very long way. I think this might be the only product that I’d say is…a little too intense by itself. I love love love mixing these babies in with the Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint (in Light) or CLĒ Cosmetics CCC Cream (also in Light) – honestly, if I want to amp up any face product, I’ll put in a tiny bit of the Cover FX Drops – instant, radiant glow…but no sweaty effect. For those of you worried about highlights enhancing your pores: this is a great option for you. They’re so highly concentrated that they do not in any way enhance your pores/make your pores look larger. Never fear!

Basically, this is a super fun product, you can do a lot with it (eyes, lips, face – it’s safe for all those areas!) & really experiment. There’s some “crazier” shades on sale now, too – including Halo & Blossom, the brand’s latest two releases.

Glossier Birthday Balm Dotcom

I know what you’re thinking: this isn’t a highlight! Technically, it’s not. But I like to think of it as a much cheaper version of RMS Beauty’s Living Luminizer – it gives off that same holographic, peachy-glitter effect – for about a quarter of the price. Balm Dotcom is meant to be a multi-purpose salve for face & body, so it’s totally okay to use this on whichever part of your body you choose! I’ve used it on my lips, eyelids, & cheekbones so far – it’s the perfect combination of a face gloss & a highlight – less sticky than a gloss, more malleable than a highlight. I really, really love this product – & yes, I’m a bit biased, because I love birthday cake-scented (& flavored) things, & I love holographic things, but this truly is worth $12. If you want a salve, balm, eye gloss, & highlight, you can get it with the Glossier Birthday Balm Dotcom.

Marc Jacobs Glow Stick Glistening Illuminator 

Hello!!!! This is Glossier Haloscope on steroids (same form of dispension, same general idea of application). I was first put on to this when I read an interview with Jazzelle Zanaughtti (@uglyworldwide on Instagram, genderqueer model, bald, bad as fk! & a huge fashion/attitude inspiration) & saw her mention that she used this. I’d already had it on my Sephora loves list for a while, so I decided to take the plunge & buy it in March. I was not let down! This is an amazing product – super concentrated, doesn’t take a lot to glow – but at the same time, it doesn’t look like you’re trying too hard. Even if I’m wearing no face makeup, it’s so easy to swipe a little bit of this on my cheekbones, lids, & browbones, brush on some brow gel, & run out the door. The shade is “Spotlight: universal glow” & I have to agree…I’ve seen so many people with so many different skin tones/undertones rock this highlight. It’s truly amazing – & a little goes a long way, so you get a lot of bang for your buck.

Well – that’s about it! I collect highlights like crazy, but it’s still hard for me to find ones that work well on my pale skin without giving a brown/dark cast to the tops of my cheekbones. None of these do that – but none of these will look bad on deeper skintones, either! In my opinion, these are all universally flattering. It’s up to you which one (or two, or three) you’ll pick to make your signature summer highlight.

Let me know in the comments which highlight you’ve been loving so far this summer, & why! 

Love,

Sof ❤

Creative Lass Esthetic: Love, Support, &, Yes…Amazing Beauty Products

Okay. I was minding my own business, flicking through Instagram stories as one does, when I saw @ceciliagorgon, Glossier Girl (& skin inspiration) post a picture of a….lip powder?

I was intrigued. The brand was tagged as @clecosmetics, so I went to check out their account. Calming images of fashion, art, as well as photographs of their own cosmetics were spread across their feed. A mood board, as well as a skincare & beauty brand, it seemed.

The next day, I was at Ulta picking up a few things, & noticed the CLĒ Cosmetics Melting Cleanser on the K-Beauty shelf. It’s not often that I see non-foaming cleansers, so I picked it up to give it a go. For those of you who aren’t able to get Glossier (or even those of you who are)…this is a great option. Soothing, cleansing, sinks right into your skin & leaves you fresh & glowing.

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My first experience with CLĒ – their Melting Cleanser
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A description of the product’s effect on the back of the bottle (along with rose-gold lettering)

I reached out to CLĒ to tell them how much I enjoyed their cleanser, to see that they were already following me! What came after was some of the sweetest, most kind customer service (& lovely commentary on many of my Instagram photos) that I have ever experienced. They sent me a package with their CCC Cream & one of their lip powders!

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CLĒ CCC Cream, along with their Melting Lip Powder in Milk Choco

Each CLĒ purchase from their website (www.clecosmetics.com) includes a booklet, describing what the brand is all about, as well as some samples. What was my sample? The Oxygen Foam Cleanser.

I was extremely skeptical of the foam cleanser. As you all know, I have extraordinarily dry skin, & most foaming cleansers do NOT work well on my skin – they just strip me dry, leaving me feeling tight, painful, & more at risk for micro abrasions. On the back of the sample, the cleanser was described as “a new innovative concept of professional makeup remover and skincare cleanser all-in-one.” A self-bubbling cleanser, an all-in-one cleansing – & a deep-cleansing oxygen mask, something that’s become increasingly popular in Korea. I decided to give it a go, as it was described as a gentle product.

The Oxygen Foam Cleanser comes out of the bottle as a liquid – kind of like the Milky Jelly Cleanser. As you massage it into your face, it starts foaming up. Then, you just sit back & wait for it to take effect.

&…I loved it. I loved the way I would massage the cleanser into my skin, wait 30 seconds, watching it bubble up on my face (admittedly a lot of fun), rinse with warm water, & feel fresh, glowing – but never, ever tight. I included this in my May favorites post – it’s truly that good. 

I reached out to the brand to ask them why this cleanser was so good for my skin – & dry skin in general, as most foaming cleansers aren’t recommended for my skin type. I heard back directly from creative director & co-founder (!!!) Lauren Jin. Here’s what she had to say: “This cleanser minimizes irritation because the micro self-generation oxygen bubbles gently remove deep seated dirt & makeup residue. You do not have to use fingers & cleansing tools that may cause irritation. Also, the cleanser leaves skin soft & supple due to the oxygen bubbles giving oxygen to clogged pores (usually covered from sunblock &/or makeup), because skin also needs to breathe.”

Thorough, makes sense, & further proves how amazing this cleanser is.

So – before I talk about more of CLĒ’s truly amazing products…what’s the brand all about? If you purchase from them, you’ll recieve a booklet that explains the philosophy behind the brand.

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CLĒ – Creative Lass Esthetic 

Pronounced “clay” not “clee” (yes, I messed it up too at first!) CLĒ stands for Creative Lass Esthetic. Their brand is: “minimally designed beauty products using the latest Korean technologies to suit the modern woman for an effortless lifestyle. CLE is an esthetic. An embodiment of the minimalist woman. A moment within daily rituals, where the sensation of touch is practiced. Femininity in the most subtlest form. The purest action of beauty; of self care. CLE is for someone who etches away the unnecessary, and finds admiration within the raw core of what is left.” 

Sounds good! According to the booklet, the “lass” that this brand is intended for “cannot be described or named easily. You don’t know what it is but there’s an intriguing quality in how CLĒ brings out your own unique beauty. And that’s what makes you who you are, so effortless and natural.”

Again…amazing! As you all know, I love the concept of “no makeup makeup.” This is what CLĒ is…along with two incredibly effective cleansers suitable for all skin types.

Next up? Their face makeup. I’m a sucker for CC Creams…& CLĒ’s take on it, the CCC Cream (“CLĒ CC Cream”) is one I’m 100% on board with. Like most CC creams, it comes out of the tube white, but adjusts to your skin tone. I wear the lightest shade “Light,” but it comes in 5 shades. It has a lightweight feel (again…no makeup makeup!) light to medium coverage, &, best of all…has SPF 45+. As you might know, I’m forever seeking out products with SPF in them. I’m extremely sun-sensitive…so to have a CC Cream with this much sun protection, as well as a lightweight feel, no stickiness, & no sunscreen scent is truly incredible. On days when I feel like a “full face” (my idea of a full face is a CC Cream) I use the CCC Cream all over my face. I also like to use it in combination with my Dr. Jart Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Cream…I dot the CCC Cream on the inside areas of my face, blending it out with the Dr. Jart Cream. A combo made in heaven.

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CLE’s CCC Cream, glowing in the sun.
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What the CCC Cream looks like all over the face (along with the Melting Lip Powder in Milk Choco)

Like most beauty brands originating in Korea, CLĒ is super focused on sun protection. Which is important for everyone, obviously…& especially important to me. I am forever on the hunt for products that will further protect my sun-sensitive face. CLĒ? They have me covered. Their Essence Air Cushion is no exception. This is for someone who’s looking for more sheer coverage (it’s lighter than the CCC Cream)…but the SPF level is 50+!!! I’d never used a cushion foundation before, so it was a bit difficult to navigate at first. However, everything’s packaged extremely hygienically, claims to have long-lasting hydration, a radiant glow, & includes a cushion refill – which is a comfort, if you were surprised at the higher price point. You can purchase a cushion refill separately! 

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Outside packaging…
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The inside of the cushion, including an applicator, & a shield from the actual product itself. Like I said, super hygienic.
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This is the product in all it’s glory! I know…looks too dark for my skin tone. But this is in the lightest shade, & actually is a little paler once it goes on my skin than the CCC Cream! Trust me, it fits my skin tone perfectly (& if you have questions, message CLĒ a selfie on Instagram. They’ll help you come up with the shade that fits you best).

Cushion foundation experience? 10/10. It’s a great way to combine a slightly heavier product (like the CCC Cream) with a sheerer product. Either way, you’ll be glowing, & best of all, protected from the sun.

Onto the most fun product CLĒ has: Melting Lip Powder. It sounds horrifically drying, I know – but I apply a lip balm before, go ham with my powder application, & have absolutely no problems at all. It contains Vitamin E, a hydrating ingredient, so that explains its ability to keep your lips from feeling & looking like the Sahara Desert. Refinery29 even featured it in their “New Lipstick Formula” article

It’s a great compromise between a liquid lipstick (which I am…truly over…) & a regular lipstick. This sinks in more easily, & lasts longer than a lipstick – you can go for hours without re-applying. It fades very gracefully, kind of like a stain – & is smudge & waterproof! When I want to go matte, I pass right over tubes of liquid lipstick & turn to these instead. You can build a high coverage lip, or leave it looking blurry & minimalistic. Either way, it’s an amazing product to have, feels really weird (in a good way) when you apply it, &…yup, can be used on your cheeks as well. I love a product that can be used in multiple ways! & CLĒ nailed it with this one.

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Melting Lip Powders – in more subdued shades, as well as more fiery ones!
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A close-up on the texture of the product
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As you can see by this “swatch” it’s most definitely a powder! But you can also see that some of the powder pieces have already started to sink into my hand. As the powder adjusts to your body heat, it sinks in & becomes a cream/stain-like product. 
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Just the other day, wearing a quick swipe of the Melting Lip Powder in “Barbie Pink” (& I don’t even usually like hot pinks!) along with a combination of the Dr. Jart Tiger Grass Cream & the CLĒ CCC Cream. Results? Dewy, natural, with a pop of color. 

Yes, some of these products were sent to me…but I purchased the cleansers (& one lip powder) myself. Why? Because they’re truly effective (especially the Oxygen Foam Cleanser. I will go on for days about it).

So…why am I so nuts about CLĒ? Here’s why…plain & simple.

These days, it’s really hard to find brands that uplift & support you as you support them (by buying their products!) CLĒ does this, & more. Tag them in a photo? You’ll get a sweet comment & some cute emoji. Have questions? You’ll hear back within 48 hours (usually much less) with a kind & helpful answer. Started by a young woman, managed by more young women, this is a brand that is as sweet as it is effective. I have infinite love for CLĒ, how they’ve supported me, & how innovative they’ve been. &, best of all, they’ve convinced me that I can use a foaming cleanser!!!! Who would’ve thought.

Stay tuned for more with me & CLĒ…there’s exciting things coming, & I cannot wait to share them all with you. But for now?

Lola, Lauren, & so many others behind CLĒ: I love you all! Thank you for your hard work, your kindness, & your committment to making people feel loved. That’s what beauty brands should do…& you’ve raised the bar. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Love,

Sof ❤

Visit CLĒ’s website here, visit their blog here, & check out (& follow!) their Instagram here& like I said…stay tuned 🙂 Also…to my international readers, never fear! CLĒ has international shipping.