January 16, 2014

Review: Ulta Beauty Smoothie in "Berrylicious"


Hey there my little cupcakes!Just throwing out a quick review on this Ulta Beauty Smoothie! I've been using this shower gel/bubble bath/shampoo for a few weeks now and wanted to give you guys the play by play on how I feel about it!

Well guess what, I LOVE IT! I initially had the Cupcake flavor in my hand and then stumbled on this Berrylicious scent. I wasn't 100% happy with the cupcake one anyway so I figured this one looked so rich and berry-like that I had to get a whiff! Oh my goodness, if you haven't smelled this shower gel you need to get in your car and get to your nearest Ulta NOW. It is amazing! It fills up my entire bathroom for a good hour or two with this overwhelming heavenly berry scent! It is to die for! I want this in body mist form because I want to smell like this all day, everyday for the rest of my life!

It's a triple threat: bubble bath, shower gel, and shampoo. I'm not one to use these "multitaskers" on my hair and I am in love with my Biolage but for a bubble bath and a shower gel, this is perfection in a bottle! It is so creamy and rich and lathers up into an amazing foam on my body puff. As for the bubble bath aspect, it's okay. Nothing too crazy and the bubbles only last for a short while. I mainly use this as my shower gel and I've significantly already made a dent in it! This is by far my favorite body wash and I plan on stocking up when they're on sale! (I grabbed mine for 50% off at the end of December!)

Let's be friends!
Subscribe to my YouTube to stay up to date with new video posts!
FACEBOOK: /thecupcakeblondie
EMAIL: kkumse@gmail.com

January 14, 2014

Try-It-Out Tuesdays: Almay Shadow Softies

Welcome back to another Try-It-Out Tuesday! Thanks for being here with me! Today's we're reviewing the Almay Shadow Softies that may be catching your eye when you walk into your drugstore!

These shadows average between $4.50 and $5 a piece in my local drugstores and I was able to pick them all up for FREE. Yes, FREE! Couponing for beauty products truly is a blessing when you're running a blog! ;) Let's just say with manufacturer coupons, BOGO sales, and store coupons I was able to MAKE MONEY off buying these shadows and used that extra overage to buy other cosmetics. If you want to know more about couponing for cosmetics I'll be happy to start another series with tips and deals when I find them!

Now onto the products, shall we? These Almay shadows look so interesting when you see them on a shelf and the best thing is that every store I've been in had a display that incorporated a sample tester you could actually feel! Upon first touch these shadows are super soft, similar to a whipped cream formula (hence the "softies" name). I personally think they come in an amazing array of color choices for all styles as well! I wanted to snag these the second I saw them but price wise I wasn't sure a single shadow was worth nearly five bucks.

This is why I was so happy to find out I could make money off them at my Walgreens! So I was able to pick up 8 colors (my sister chose one she loved) and they're pretty average quality.

Recently I watched a video from a while back from Miss +emilynoel83 on Beauty Broadcast Express about these and she wasn't thrilled with them. And when I swatched them originally I wasn't too impressed either. But in this photo you can see the colors are super pigmented! Well, I don't know why they look so great here because once they're on your eye (primer or no primer) most of them are NOT this bright!

I went ahead and swatched the colors I have on my lids sans primer to get the true color by itself straight on the skin. I used my finger to apply as I've noticed since they are a whipped/soft texture brushes just DON'T work! I describe the outcome below in order from top swatch down.

  • Midnight Sky - this is a deep sparkly navy with total pigmentation! More than likely I'd use this on the outer V or crease. I dub this the best of them all (in my collection).
  • Moss - olive green is a shade I absolutely love on my brown eyes and this moss color hits the spot! It is amazingly pigmented and can be built up to be a strong mossy green or lightly for a softer look. If you like olive, this is a good one to purchase!
  • Petal - a very, very subtle pink. This is nothing like what it looks like in the pan. But, I did a look recently with this pink and I used a powder shadow on top of it and it looked amazing! You can definitely build this one up and use it as a base for a pinker look.
  • Peach Fuzz - this is the orange shade in the pan but is very flesh-toned on the skin. It takes a lot to come off as "orange" as it looks in the pan but it is possible... with a LOT of work! This is one I probably wouldn't recommend wasting your time on since it's pretty weak.
  • Seafoam - this is the super light blue color and it's very subtle at first. I was able to build it up to a brighter blue and really like it for a sky blue look. Not disappointed at all.
  • Cashmere - in the pan it looks like a beautiful buttery yellow but on the skin it's more of a cream color. Very nice for a highlight but not great for an all over the lid look.
  • Lilac - a beautiful dusty purple shade, very nice for a subtle purple look. I know a lot of purples on the market can be overwhelming and super bright but this is the perfect pastel violet for a soft look.

There you have it! Overall, if you can get these for a discounted price or on sale, a few are worth picking up. I am impressed with the texture of how creamy they are to begin and the transformation to a more powdery feel. I feel Almay is trying to step it up in the makeup world and I give them an A+ for effort! Keep trying, Almay! I will continue to test out your new products at they hit the shelves! ;)

January 12, 2014

Tutorial: Naked 3 Natural

It is time! Time for a Naked 3 tutorial! Hopefully if you wanted this palette you were able to get your hands on it! My lovely family snagged it for me as a Christmas gift and I was so excited! This look is a lighter wearable look versus a deep sultry look. I hope you leave your feedback in the comments or on a social network!

Products listed at the end!

Freshly moisturized with my favorite facial moisturizer, the DG Dry Skin Cream ("compare to Ponds")!

I've been really liking this primer. It's a great price at only $6 and you can find it at Target, KMart, and online at the eyeslipsface website!

I then applied my foundation with my damp TJMaxx Beauty Blender dupe. It spreads out my foundation SO well since I have super dry skin. Since it's wet and you're dabbing the product on it doesn't aggravate those dry patches! Love using this tool for foundation.

I applied my lash growth serum before m eye primer and pulled out the big boy we're focusing on here: the Naked 3 palette!

I used Strange for my highlight, Dust and Buzz for the lid, and Limit as my transition/crease color.

Here are the eyes with highlight and lid colors applied!

I'm blending the color Limit here into my crease to mesh the lid and highlight together flawlessly. 

If you can see here, I have the lighter shimmer on the inside of the lid and the deeper shimmer on the outer corner!

I actually turned Blackheart from a black shadow into a deep purple color by very lightly using this in the outer-V and under the lower lashes. I don't know how I did it, but I did and I was SO proud that I ended up turning it into a whole new color!

A check in photo!

I applied the color Buzz under the lower lashes to add some emphasis!

And finally I also dragged the Blackheart color to the edge of the lower lashes for a smokey look. I did NOT pick up much product at all! I just tapped the brush into the color and tapped off the excess to keep it soft.

And the eyeshadow is complete! :)

I wanted a pop of color in this neutral look so I added a plum-toned liner to the bottom lash line and waterline. I smudged the liner using that pencil brush from earlier.

I used my favorite flesh-toned liner to the inner corner to really brighten up that area! I smudged it a bit so it wasn't harsh.

It may not seem like a huge step, but applying a light color to that inner tear duct area really bring light to your eyes and brightens it up! You don't need to point out my CRAZY brows either. In editing this they were driving me bonkers! We're fixing them now...

Voila! Much better!

Same concealer routine you see me do a lot! Match2Cover concealer under the eyes! Today I DON'T set the cream products with powder. I've noticed since I am dry using powder isn't helping keep the dry away this winter. Some days I'll use it if my skin is super hydrated but if it's a little thirsty, I skip that step.

I picked up this mascara at my dollar store for a steal and guess what, it will certainly be making an appearance in a few weeks in a post if you know what I'm hinting at...

And these are the eyes 100% done! I am LOVING this look so much! I'm a very neutral kind of girl and the rosey tones in the Naked 3 are right up my alley!

Blush, check! Highlight, check! Bronzer in January?! Yepp, I did it! And the Sunny bronzer from NYC is amazing!

I went for a very subtle cheek look so I bronzed the face (didn't contour) and added a little bit of glow to the cheeks. I didn't want anything overpowering since the eyes were what I wanted to focus on. If you look at earlier photos you'll see the difference that bronzer makes at warming up the complexion.

I lined my lips with this neutral liner...

...and doubled up on lip products! I wanted a deeper berry color with the cranberry balm and then toned it down with a nude gloss.

Here are the lips! Nice and natural looking without being "naked."

A flawless face that's is wearable for any time of day and any place! Work, school, interview, going out to lunch - you name it! If you recreate the look let me know and tag me on my social networks!

DG Dry Skin Cream Moisturizer
e.l.f. Mineral Primer
TJMaxx Beauty Blender Dupe
Covergirl 3-in-1 Foundation in 810 Classic Ivory
Rimmel Lash Accelerator Growth Serum
Urban Decay Primer Potion
Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette

  • Strange (highlight)
  • Limit (transition color)
  • Dust (inner corner/inner lid)
  • Buzz (mid and outer lid, under eye)
  • Blackheart (deepening the crease and under eye)

Rimmel Exaggerate Liner in Aubergine
NYX Wonder Pencil in Light
Essence Brow Pencil in Blonde
Essence Match2Cover Concealer
e.l.f. Small Stipple Brush
L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes
NYX Blush in Pinched
Wet n Wild Fergie Shimmer Palette in Rose Champagne Glow
NYC Bronzer in Sunny
Wet n Wild Coloricon Lip Liner in Willow
Jordana Twist and Shine Balm in Cranberry Crush
Maybelline Color Elixir in 060 Nude Illusion
NYX Dewy Finishing Spray (not pictured)

xo K

Unboxing: Julep Maven "Classic with a Twist" Welcome Box

Welcome back to another UNBOXING blog! This is my SECOND Julep Maven unboxing and this time we're diving into the Classic with a Twist style profile!

A brief rundown of the service: Julep Maven is a monthly subscription box where you get full sized nail varnishes or beauty products sent right to your door! There are FIVE "style profiles" to choose from based on a quick quiz identifying which look is right for you! You don't have to stick with the profile you're given, so choose which style YOU love most! You can get your hands on a Welcome Box of your own for only the price of shipping, just $3.99! Use the code FREEBOX at checkout. If you're interested in signing up or just reading up on it, click here and visit their website!

This month I found this pretty little purple box in my mailbox instead of the black box from December! Pleasant surprise!

Inside you're greeted by a shimmery sheet of tissue paper and some welcome cards right on top!

It's not a Julep box without a little quote.

In December I received a skin serum as my beauty item in the Bombshell box. This month I was given the nail and cuticle serum. This serum claims to strengthen nails and soften cuticles with keratin, peptides, and collagen! I haven't been able to give this guy a long enough chance to show me the results but I can definitely do a review in a few weeks. The packaging is gorgeous - looks rich and expensive. ;) And normally it is! This is valued at $28 to any customer coming to Julep's site to buy products!

In the Classic with a Twist box I was supplied a gorgeous red polish (Zora) and this light pink with shimmer (Myrtle). All Julep polishes are named after women's names so in my opinion it's easier to find the shade you want and refer back to it! The shimmers in the Myrtle polish are very faint but offer a gorgeous sparkle! And Zora is a beautiful classic red, not too deep and not too orangey. (I may add a swatch photo later to Twitter or Facebook).

Last but not least, this foil packet sample was not in my December box but was in the January one! It's a face primer that mattifys. There's an okay amount of product in the packet, but I don't really feel it's enough to give a good enough review on after use. But it's a nice little addition!

I did enjoy this box very much and look forward to trying out others from the Julep Maven collection! Thanks for reading & I'll see you guys soon! (Check below for more info on Julep!)

Each polish alone is about $14 but with the Maven box you can get 2 polishes AND a beauty item for only $19.99! Best part: your first box is FREE! And if you decide it isn't for you, you can cancel ANYTIME before your next box ships! It's that easy! Find out more at julep.com!

* I was not sent this box for review. I bought it with my own money and the thoughts are 100% my own. *

January 9, 2014

What I Got for Christmas!

I know, it's already the second week of January and I am just now getting to this! Today I'm going to share with you what I got for Christmas! I had a whole lot of other things that were just super random I didn't feel needed to be included. Thanks for reading!

Something I was so interested in adding to my collection was the Vice 2 palette from Urban Decay! This certainly isn't an everyday palette for everyone - it's more for the bold! But I loved the shades and I have fallen in love with UD so I wanted to have this puppy in my collection for some awesome shimmer looks later!

It might be simple, but I love makeup wipes and they can be pricey when you use them as often as I do. So the fact my mom and sister thought to grab me some of these, it was very nice of them! And honestly, I am super impressed with the power of these! They aren't sopping wet like some wipes but they do the job and are super soft on my skin! I recommend these to anyone needing some remover wipes and don't want to break the bank.

I had this cleanser on my list and was super excited when I opened it from my sister! I didn't even know they made it in a foaming pump version so that was extra cool! After using it for a few weeks I have to say... I'm going to be doing a blog post on my reaction to it. STAY TUNED for a Try-It-Out Tuesday with this cleanser! A lot of gurus on YouTube use the Purity cleanser so I absolutely wanted to try it!

Yes, yes I have it! Naked 3! I have been trying to play around with color combos and certain looks with this palette and I have to say I am favoriting a different one over this one. And I'm favoriting a CHEAPER palette with MORE shades! Keep reading... ;)

It's always nice to get nail varnish as gifts as I tend to neglect this department! These awesome shades were gifted to me from my sister and the glitter is by far my favorite! I am super excited to try out the highlighter yellow once spring comes up!

I. Love. ELF products! If you've been around here a bit you'll certainly know ELF is one of my favorite cheap brands that packs a powerful punch with amazing products! ELF always blows my mind when trying new things and their liquid eyeliners have been favorites of mine for quite some time. The bets thing is that not only did I get a black liquid liner in this pack, I got a midnight blue one too! I was lacking a liquid navy liner so I was super happy! The pencil is pretty sub-par but what do you expect out of that price range for products? I always go into ELF with an open mind not expecting much but 9 times out of 10 am blown away!

No, they're not name brand Beauty Blenders, but they are amazing! I once bought a pink blender (shaped like this blue one) and used it dry for a month until the lightbulb went off and I realized why it wasn't applying my concealer at all like the girls online. Hello Kelly... get it wet! I have been using the green one in this photo for two weeks now and it gives me such amazing coverage and a dewy look. Love love love these! I would definitely recommend testing out a cheaper drugstore blender before shelling out the big bucks on a name brand Beauty Blender to see if you like the application and feel of a sponge versus your fingers or a brush. :)

This thing is pretty awesome! I have only gotten a chance to use it on my sister's thicker short hair and it did the job! This is a ceramic blow drying brush for your damp hair. You're to let your hair air dry or blow dry to almost dry before using this little guy. Then when it's just damp, you want to blow dry with this brush and the ceramic plates heat up from the air and straighten your hair! I naturally have pretty straight hair, especially compared to m sister's, so I haven't picked it up yet for myself. Bonnie and I tested it on her newly short bob and it really did straighten it! Now, don't expect the silky soft results of a straightener but it tamed her curls/frizz and cut down on straightening time!!! It was good enough (in my opinion) to even leave it as is since it really did straighten her curls out. This was from TJMaxx or Ross and I would definitely recommend it to anyone with curly/frizzy hair to cut down on the time you spend getting it poker straight!

This was a perfect little palette my mom got me from ELF that surprisingly has amazing pigmentation! This little guy was super affordable and came with applicators and a pencil liner! The shadows are by far the most impressive ELF shadows I've had a chance to try. I will swatch them in a blog later for you to see just how they compare to higher end brands! If you can find this little black book in a retailer near you that sells ELF, PICK IT UP! Gorgeous shades, quality color payoff, amazing price!

I've been wanting a wand to try out for a few months now so when I saw this one under the tree I got excited. After using it about 4 times now I think I'm going to rate this particular one a 6 out of 10. I love the waves it gives my hair (very cocker spaniel but I like it). It's a new style compared to my traditional barrel curler... but the heat. The glove is NOT heat resistant as it claims. I'm not expecting heat PROOF, no. I am expecting what is advertised - RESISTANT and I cannot touch the barrel without burning myself! The blue handle also gets scorching hot from where the barrel and handle meet down about an inch and half, right below the on/off switch. So I have to hold it lower on the handle without burning myself as well. Overall, this thing is DANGEROUS in my opinion... but I am giving it some time to try to master it. I have no doubt higher end brands are fabulous and safer, but this one from Lux Beauty isn't going to be something I reach for constantly I assume. Who knows, maybe I'll change my mind.

This was #1 on my list! I told my family and fiance if I don't get anything else this year I want this palette! This is my 100% favorite palette of all time! I now have a favorite higher end brand of makeup and Lorac takes the cake! I will go into detail more about these shadows in a later post, but know that if you have thought about a neutral/sultry palette before, spend the $ and grab this one! It's only $42 and it gives you 16 shades! Way more for your money than the Naked palettes! Buy it, buy it, buy it! Don't think about it - buy it!

No girl will ever turn down bath luxuries! My mom opened up her big bar of soap first so once I got to mine I knew what it was! These are always great gifts you can find at TJMaxx and discount stores and they are a favorite of mine! My sister was kind enough to get me a tote with all of these bath products in it! And when I opened a gift form my mom, it was the same tote but larger with a big fluffy towel and other bath products in it! I am a bath LOVER and you can always find me soaking in the tub reading a book or catching up on social networking.

Thank you so much to my family for getting me MORE than I ever expected this Christmas! You are amazing and I love you all. <3 xo