Cindy’s {current} Beauty Favorites

Hey, gals (and guys)! Remember when I promised you that beauty-faves post 2 weeks ago? Well…it’s here! I have to apologize for getting majorly distracted by family/friend time while I was away in the wild West. Toddler and baby nieces, man, they get me EVERYTIME!

But really, let’s talk about this make-up sitch…cause I love it and love talking about it…so bear with me! These are just 15 (fifteen!) of my current favorites — products I use, have used, or just discovered and love.

1. I picked up this Sonia Kashuk Hidden Agenda concealer palette several weeks ago and I am loving it. It contains 3 cream concealers (light, medium, and a green-tinted one for covering redness), as well as a setting powder (which I NEVER use, I’d honestly rather have another cream concealer shade for blending). I mostly use the green tinted and light concealers the most, though I appreciate the darker shade for blending and I think it will definitely come in handy this summer.

2. Urban Decay Razor Sharp Ultra Definition Finishing Powder. GUYS! THIS POWDER is amazing, despite it’s super long name. I am so-super-obsessed. It’s an HD-style (as in HDTV) finishing powder, claiming that it creates an optical illusion that hides flaws…and, I totally drank the kool-aid. Since using this, I have totally given up on foundation primers, it has a similar effect with out the weird end-of-the-day foundation slide that sometimes happens with primers.  It has a weirdo-applicator that I was okay with at first, but grew to hate, so I just popped off the top and use it as a loose powder with a brush. I use this powder on my whole face after I apply my foundation and concealer. It’s super silky, smooth, and does not leave a cakey-powder finish. It’s also great over a little BB cream to smooth things out and amp up the coverage. I will definitely be re-purchasing.

3. Again, another overwrought name, but really, Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen WOW Brightening Makeup is my current go-to and has been for several months now (I have re-purchased it a few times). It has medium coverage and a super lightweaight feel on the skin. I love the silken texture of the liquid and it’s smooth application. As with everyone, I struggle with matching my skin tone. As an Asian/Caucasian I have yellowish undertones, some redness, some hyper-pigmentation, and I go from medium-light to bronzed depending on the season. The shade Honey…I’m so money is one of the best matches for my skin tone I have found, and it blends like a dream. Paired with the UD Razor Sharp powder and I feel pretty much as flawless as possible when I leave the house. Also, the pump-style package makes for very little waste.

4. These DreamLumi Touch Highlighting Concealers have been all over the internets recently, and I have totally jumped onto that bandwagon. I use these (I have them in Nude and Buff) exclusively around my eye area. If you have dark under eyes, these are a dream — they brighten with just a bit of highlight, without making you look crazed. PLUS they are a drugstore find and at Ulta you can often get them (and mix/match) for their Buy1Get1 50% deal they always seem to run on drugstore brands.

5. This Pixi Endless Silky Eye Pen in Cafe Gold is SO PRETTY! It’s a gold-flecked brown eye pencil that glides perfectly AND is waterproof. They are a lot like the Urban Decay 24/7 pencils (which I also use and love), but a bit cheaper and I think the colors are a bit more restrained. I have weepy outer-eye corners, so waterproof liners are my jam and this one is definitely a keeper.

6. Another Sonia Kashuk palette, this Arch Alert Brow Kit is pretty great. Though I have super dark eyebrows, they are sparse in areas, and ladies (gents, too) your eyebrows make your face. Non-eyebrowed folks are just creepy. For an example, check out this creepshow. There are 4 shades that have a bit of a waxy texture–eliminating the need (in my opinion) for brow gel. The darkest and medium brown shades both work for me–the medium is a more everyday look, while I use the dark one for nighttime. There is also a reddish shade and a fair one for our redheaded and blonde friends. I use this palette with a short, compact bristled brush.

7. I just picked up this Smashbox Halo Highlighting wand a few weeks ago, hoping that I would get the most product from it possible, and I am loving it. I am a big fan of liquid highlighters and was using one for Stila for a while, but the packaging frustrated me — the brush doesn’t reach the bottom of the bottle, so the remaining contents get dry and goopy…not cute. This wand has a click/pump that pushes from the bottom up, lessening the waste…which I love! I have the wand in the gold color — because I LOVE gold things — though I think the pink is just as pretty. I have only been using highlighter religiously in the last 6 months or so, but I feel like it really brings something extra to the make-up party. I use it to highlight the tops of my cheeks, the bridge of my nose, my brow bones, and the cupid’s bow of my upper lip. You could use the brush on the wand, but I just use to to dot the product on my face where I want highlight and brush it out with a stiff bristled, short haired, flat brush (like the white handled one pictured above).

8. Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush has been making huge waves on the internets and I couldn’t resist trying it out. I am a big fan of Tarte cosmetics and this blush does not disappoint. I purchased it in the color Natural Beauty, which is a matte rosy-red color. I call it the perfect Snow-White-Princess blush–it’s really red and rosy and pigmented and PERFECT. I love a doll-face, fairy-tale cheek on anyone and this product delivers. The color pay-off is huge — a little goes a long way and a light hand OR blending is absolutely necessary. I am a big fan of blending, so I pile it on, blend, and repeat until I like what I see. I have tried this blush in other colors and love them all just as much, but this is my absolute fave for my skin tone. My BFF has the color Blissful which is coral-y and beautiful too, and may just be next in my collection.

9. I am a huge fan of the glossy, balmy, lipsticks that are popping up all over drugstores these days. This one by Maybelline Color Whisper in Pin-Up Peach may just be my EVER-FAVE lipcolor for any and everyone. It’s creamy and light on the lip, glides on easily, and leaves behind just enough color. This particular color looks good on pretty much everyone, I could not possibly love it more. It’s the perfect sweet and vintage-y peach-pink color at a great price point.

10. & 11. Revlon’s Colorburst Lip Butters are really similar to Color Whisper, but waxier. The color pay-off is similar, sheer color with a bit of pop. These shades in Sweet Tart (10.) and Cherry Tart (11.) are my favorite shades of the bunch. Sweet Tart is a sheer, creamy, bright pink — think barbie toned down a bit. Cherry Tart is a great red — my other red lipsticks are from MAC and super pigmented and opaque — this one is more sheer and you can build the color allowing you to go for a cherry-stained look or a more bold red lip.

12. Revlon Just Bitten Kissable BalmStain in Rendezvous is the first (and only?) tangerine-y color I own. I like this one because it’s definitely part of the orange lip trend, but not overly so and is a nice intro into a more bold lip look. I like the chunky crayon style and the smooth balmy texture, not to mention the sheer, fun color. I woud say that if your natural lip is fairly dark, this may not apply evenly color-wise, since it is a sheer-stain product.

13. I recently dropped my Birchbox subscription and took up with Julep Maven. I’m liking this subscription because no matter what  I get at least 2 new polishes a month…which, for me, makes it totally worth it. Plus, if I’m not feeling the boxes, I can skip that month. This Julep color in Teri is such a perfect coral cream. I love a cream polish and I am loving coral this year, so this is perfect. In the bottle, it appears a little more drab and muddy than it does on the nail, and online is seems REALLY orange. I assure you, it’s definitely a coral and definitely one that I will use all summer.

14. I got this FLO Atomizer in a Birhcbox before I cancelled and it was hands-down the best thing I got from them all year. Even though it totally looks like a vibrator (oh, I went there… because it totally does) it’s the PERFECT size to decant a sample-size of perfume and fits perfectly in any purse, plus you can clean it and fill it again with something else. I thought I actually lost this and immediately purchased a new one (Sephora brand that seems to be pretty comparable).

15. While dry shampoo is hardly a new thing, I couldn’t resist sharing this travel-size bottle of cherry scented Batiste. I find this brand to be well priced (compared to Rockaholic, which was what I used to buy), and while the scent is hardly cherry-like, I love the throw-back look of the packaging and that it’s travel sized. I have not tried any tinted dry shampoo’s, but I do have super-dark brown hair and yeah, I do get the white residue, but I just let it set/absorb for a few minutes (I usually tweeze my brows or something while I wait) and then just rub it in super fast. As someone who NEVER washes her hair consecutive days in a row (I can’t even imagine how dry my ends would be), dry shampoo is worth minimal the effort. It’s easy enough and FAR less time consuming than washing, blow-drying, flat-ironing my hair on the daily.

**HEY! Just a little disclaimer to say that none of these opinions are sponsored–I purchased all of these products with my own dollars and tested them out on my own face and head and nails, etc. Links are provided for my readers by me and are un-sponsored, so that the products mentioned are easy to find and check out. All opinions are my own. 



  1. says

    LOVE this, Cindy! I totally just pinned the atomizer and now am worried about people thinking I pinned a vibrator (because you’re right, it definitely looks like one). I’ve been thinking of trying that Tarte blush, yes to princess blush! I also appreciate the Batiste rec. My Target may or may not have discontinued my favorite dry shampoo (couldn’t find it last time I looked, no empty row, boo) and I’ve heard good things about Batiste. Thanks for sharing your faves!

  2. says

    oh dear. probably such a good thing we do not live near each other.
    ever since you posted the hello flawless stuff on instagram, i’ve been dying for it. i tried the foundation in ulta but it seemed like even the lightest shade is too dark for me. i got the powder though, and i LOVE it. it’s so silky!

    i can’t get on board with the color whispers, but it might just be because i’m so loyal to the lip butters. LOVE THEM. i think i have every single shade. they are my go-to lip stuff whenever i’m in a rush, or out, or in the car, etc.

    i have a problem. glad i’m not alone.

    • says

      I go between wishing I had a make-up crazed friend nearby and thinking it would probably be a HUGE problem. ha! and as for those lip butters…I just bought a berry shade, couldn’t even help it!.

      we can be united in our product problem, I’m okay with it.

  3. says

    Girl, if that atomizer was also a vibrator, we’d be in business but i’ll keep it semi-clean here. This is an awesome post and I am with you on the snow-white rosy-cheeked princess look. My mom used to tell me to pinch my cheeks when I wanted that look but I said, “look ma, there’s products now for that.” Your photos are great too! xoxo

    • says

      HA! if only…someone would probably make a boat-load of cash.

      At least the blush doesn’t hurt as much as pinches! thanks, lady!! XO!

  4. says

    i love me a makeup roundup! been curious about those revlon lipsticks (love the packaging) and been on the hunt for something good for my brows.

    • says

      yes! I love the revlon lipsticks a lot (I have a few more in other colors) and the brow kit is good for a softer look than a pencil.

  5. says

    LOVE this post, Cindy. Some days (ok, all days) I am so glad that I’m a girl. :) I adore the Tarte Amazonian Clay blushes (spectacular) and Batiste dry shampoo (so good). I have heard good things about the Revlon lip butters and think I might need to bite the bullet and give them a try!

    • says

      yay! I will talk about my skincare routine on my next beauty post–it should be in the next few weeks…I have a bunch of stuff I want to share with you all :)

  6. says

    I just wanted to stop by and tell you how great your blog is!
    Also, I used to wear the benefit powder with spf, but switched over to Origins a while back. The origins powder is very light and also has spf. I recently purchased a lip balm! I wish I would have read your review before I made up my mind. I was literally at Walgreens for like, an hour trying to pick. I ended up buying the Loreal lip balm in “caring coral”. Initially I wanted something with a red tint, but not too opaque (like a lipstick. I will definitely try the Revlon in cherry tart next. Yay :)

  7. says

    I also love the Tarte blush and I’m going to have to try the dream-lumi, because these dark circles have to go!

  8. says

    Eeeep! I LOVE makeup posts!! That atomizer was new to me and I’m pumped to give it a try.

    And now you have me TOTALLY sold on the UD High Def Finishing powder. I don’t even use a finishing powder and I really know I should. I’m gonna give this one a shot!

  9. says

    I am so obsessed with Rendezvous. It’s in my favorite video for this month and I literally have worn it every day for the last two weeks, as in my coffee mug has been permanently stained..
    Must try that foundation!

  10. says

    Ahhh I can’t believe how well you describe and explain these products, especially the lip stuff. “Barbie toned down a bit” and “nice intro into a more bold lip look” are pretty much exactly what I’ve been looking for for MONTHS in a lip color!

  11. says

    Found your site through How Sweet Eats, and I too, am obsessed with that dry shampoo. I bought it on a whim at Ulta since I feel like I never wash my hair (it dries it out soo bad!) and I LOVE IT. It’s light and makes my hair feel fantastic. I can’t wait to buy a huge bottle.

  12. says

    Hi, I just found your blog and it’s great to read what another half Asian/Caucasian likes as far as beauty products go. I’m, also, half Korean and I have such a hard time finding foundations/tinted stuff that actually looks natural and “matches”. I’m definitely on the paler (more yellow than olive), to boot.
    I look forward to following your blog!

    • says

      I totally feel your pain! Finding a good match is like gold, so many foundations seem to have pink undertones…I find samples are the key! Thanks for following :)

  13. cheryl says

    I have been waiting and sampling sooo MANY foundations and finally this week went and got the M.A.C. Studio Fix liquid, but then after reading your post I had to absoltely try the Benefit after I swore I would not buy another thing. The Benefit site offers a sample for $10 so I did it, darn it…..had to pay shipping. I am obessed!

    • says

      I use MAC studio fix when I am trying to really cover stuff up, the Benefit is definitely lighter–in coverage and feel. I love both :)

  14. Micah Tjeerdsma says

    I am SO excited to try out the Pixi liners! I use the Urban Decay ones pretty much daily…if only they were automatic then my life would be perfect. Have you tried any of the Nyx liners? I have heard they are quite similar to the UD ones, albeit less expensive and fewer colors, but with great staying power!

  15. stephanie says

    Thank you for the blush recommendation! I finally fell in love with a blush(Revlon Baby Stick in Passion Pink) but OF COURSE it was a “limited edition.” The Tarte blush looks perfect! Sephora is having a great 250 bonus right now, so I know where I’ll be tomorrow.


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