beauty basics

“nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful.” -sophia loren

welcome to my top 7 beauty basics post! i wanted to do this post because i have been in touch with so many amazing ladies who want the simple makeup facts: what are the must-have products, and what order do you use them in? please note that there are hardly any concrete “right’s” or “wrong’s” in makeup, (which is my fav part!), but these tips and tricks work best for me and in turn, i hope they prove to be helpful to you!! also, i’ve pictured some solid products in each makeup category, but you can always modify what i suggest and use something you currently own OR a different product that achieves the same result.


step by step

step 1: primer — primers are used to prep your skin for foundation application and extend the wear of your makeup. there are many different types of primers that can help you achieve the right look or complexion for your skin: smoothing, hydrating, color correcting, pore filling, blemish controlling. apply a primer after moisturizing and before using foundation. for best use, use only a pea sized drop of primer, and pat it into the skin focusing on the t-zone, forehead and cheek area.

step 2: foundation — foundation is used to give your skin the effect of an even tone tone, as well as to cancel out any discoloration or problem areas. there are so many foundations on the market ranging from drugstore to high end that it can seem overwhelming when finding one to meet your needs. my tip: think about your skin…is it oily, dry, combination, acne prone? do you suffer from hyper-pigmentation or redness? from there, you can decide on the coverage and type of foundation you want. coverage ranges from light (tinted moisturizer, BB cream, CC cream) to medium to full. type of foundations range from pressed powder, to cream, to liquid, to gel. also, be mindful of the finish you would like to achieve–dewy, satin, demi-matte, matte. choose a foundation shade that is most like the coloring of the back of your wrist/hand. faces are typically lighter in color because of all the washing and exfoliating we do. apply foundation to your skin 5 minutes after you’ve applied a primer. for best results, start off with a light base of product and continue to apply in layers until you’ve achieved the desire coverage. (for information about tools to apply your foundation with, check out my post).

step 3: concealer — concealer is used to conceal dark circles, blemishes, hyper-pigmentation, redness, and/or to brighten the appearance of the high points of the face. like foundations, concealers come in many different options. to select which type of concealer is right for you, think about what you’re trying to achieve: a brighter under eye, reduction in discoloration or redness, to cover a blemish, highlighting, etc. consistency of the concealer can determine how it covers on your skin so, typically the thicker a concealer is the more full-coverage it claims to be. conversely, if a concealer is thinner, you will probably receive a light coverage from it. (remember, this is a very vague statement and might not apply to every brand). you can also use concealer to “color correct”–if you’d like more info on this, please let me knowapply directly to your face in the areas you want to conceal or brighten. for best results, use tapping or dabbing motions when blending into the skin. do not rub! rubbing simply moves the product all over the surface of the face instead of allowing it to melt into the skin.

step 4: powder — powder is used to set your foundation or concealer, and can reduce the look of shine, or oil on the skin. some of us prefer to set our concealer with a different powder than our foundation, and that’s totally preference. using a yellow powder to set concealer gives off a brightening effect, which is trending right now. but, the most important part is to not forget to use some sort of powder because you do not want your foundation or concealer to crease or move. shine control powders are also very popular, and you don’t have to apply them all over your face. instead, concentrate the product on areas of your face that are oily. if you have drier skin, i caution you on the amount of powder you apply. cake faces are not on fleek, promise. apply powder to areas of your face that you want to “set” or areas that tend to be oily or shiny. for best results, swirl your powder brush in the product and tap the excess off. this will help you to not over apply!

step 5: bronzer — bronzer can be used to contour your face and/or add a warmth of color to the skin. you can choose between matte bronzers and shimmer bronzers. if you are contouring, please stick to a matte bronzer that is 2-3 shades deeper than your skin tone, but not orange. if you are just warming up your face, a shimmer bronzer is totally acceptable. i would not recommend a bronzer with glitter chunks in it at all, ever. to contour: apply bronzer to the hollows of your cheeks, the perimeter of your forehead, and neck line. then blend. for best results, gradually build up your contour color. regular bronzing: apply bronzer lightly to areas of the face that the sun would naturally hit–in the shape of a 3 (cheeks to temples to forehead). for best results, don’t start off strong with a lot of product, instead concentrate on making the skin look sun-kissed. you can always go back in to deepen certain areas up.

step 6: blush — blush is used to give the skin an added flush of color. the beauty of blushes is that you can choose to give your cheeks a natural glow, a deepened glow, or something in between. blushes come in matte and shimmer shades, and any color between nude and merlot that you could dream of. blushes can be cream, powder or gel consistency. apply blush to the cheeks using tapping and sweeping motions. sometimes applying blush correctly seems daunting so use this trick: place your first and second finger together–lay your fingers on your face so that the second finger is touching the outer corner of your nostril–start using your blush brush to place the product on the opposite side of your first finger working towards your ear. BASICALLY, make sure there is a 2in gap from your nose to your cheek when you apply. then tap into the skin, and sweep the remaining blush up towards your hairline. essentially, this is done in a triangular motion.

step 7: highlighter — highlighter is used to give that extra oomph of glow to the skin. this step is 100% optional! highlighters can be cream, gel, or powder and range in shades. the most important part of selecting the right highlighter is to stay away from sparkles and glitter. apply highlighter to the tops of the cheek bones, down the bridge of the nose and on the cupid’s bow. for best results, use a stippling brush because it will create an airbrushed effect versus a “swept on” look. i also use mac’s fix+ to intensify the glow of my highlighters. to do this, i spray one spritz on my stippling brush, dab it on my hand, then use it to pick up the product. tap tap tap the highlighter on the skin, and voila!

to sum it up

  • primer first, wait 5 mins for the skin to absorb
  • foundation, choose color/coverage/finish
  • concealer, use to brighten or conceal
  • powder, use to set your foundation/concealer
  • bronzer, use to contour or to give the face added warmth
  • blush, apply in tapping/sweeping motions to give a flush of color
  • highlighter, optional–gives added glow to the skin

products mentioned

  • urban decay pore perfecting complexion primer potion
  • l’oreal infallible demi-matte foundation in shell beige
  • younique touch skin perfecting concealer in scarlet
  • neutrogea shine control powder
  • nyx matte bronzer in medium
  • milani powder blush in romantic rose
  • colourpop highlighter in wisp
makeup · Uncategorized

what brush is best?


products pictured

  • Real techniques sponge, $5.99
  • Real techniques triangle foundation brush, $23.99
  • Vasanti foundation brush, $32.00
  • Real techniques buffing brush, part of the Core Collection, $17.99

How and When to use

  • RT sponge: works best if used damp. Before applying your foundation, place the sponge under water. With squeezing motions, ensure water is penetrating the entire sponge. After the sponge has doubled in size, it’s time to dry it off. Best way to do this is to squeeze the excess water off into a towel. By using it wet, you will get a smooth finish to your makeup. However, the sponge technique does sheer out your foundation or concealer a little. I use the sponge to apply my makeup about 90% of the time because it applies evenly, and smoothest the product over your skin. I use dabbing, not dragging motions when using as well–do this so you don’t smear around any foundation making it look unnatural and patchy.
  • RT Triangle Foundation Brush: works best when you apply foundation to the back of your hand (to warm it up), and then lightly pick up product onto the brush. The amazing feature about this brush is that it’s tip is triangular and pointed, allowing for it to reach into small crevasses of the face. You do use this in “painting” motions or small strokes. It applies foundation pretty evenly as long as you do not overload the brush with product. If you do, you will find streaks and uneven coloring of product on your face which is never a cute look. My favorite area to use this brush in is around my eyes, and between my eyes and nose. It is shaped perfectly for these hard to reach places. If you notice you need some more blending action going on, lightly tap your RT sponge on those spots, and you will be good to go!
  • Vasanti Foundation Brush: this is the most common foundation brush out there, and to me, the one with the least perks. It does have a dome-shaped head that can fit into harder to reach parts of the face, so that is a good aspect of this brush. Some claim that brushes like this create a natural appearance, but I have found that this applies streaky which can cause the foundation to lay on top of your skin instead of being blended into your skin. The best way to use a foundation brush like this is to use it to lay the product onto your face in smooth, stroking motions and then use a sponge to tap the remaining product in.
  • RT Buffing Brush: this is my second favorite method of applying foundation. The domed shaped head and short bristles allow this brush to reliever great coverage of your foundation and the ability to blend it into your skin. Please do not drag your brush across your face as this won’t create any type of look worth wearing! Instead, use dabbing and patting motions to work the product into the skin. Circular and downward motions work best. I do not need to use a sponge to blend anything in if I use the proper amount of product with this brush. The idea is to use a little product at a time, and picking up more with the brush when needed. Glopping on a large amount of product and then trying to smooth it out and blend all at the same time just won’t do your makeup justice!

september ipsy glam bag

face fashion edition
ipsy glam bag

image1 (26)

featured products

  • ipsy + NYX eyeshadow trio
  • treStique mini matte lip crayon
  • evelyn iona cream blush in ash
  • bayberry naturals rosehip & hibiscus moisturizer
  • vasanti brightenUp! exfoliating cleanser

first impressions

  • NYX eyeshadow-you have your all over lid shade (copper), your brow bown highlighter (champagne) and your outer corner definition shade (black). both the copper and champagne shades contain shimmer, and the black shade is matte. my favorite shadow is the copper color because it’s unusual–it’s a copper + brick combination. and unfortunately, the black eyeshadow translates very chalky to the eye lid, and some what patchy.  overall, i will probably only be using the copper shadow and i’m OK with that since it has such a unique tone to it.
  • treStique matte lip crayon-this is a nude lip crayon, that deposits matte color to your lips! the color is rich, non-drying and easy to smooth out. when wearing matte lip colors it is important to find a product that doesn’t cling to dry patches on the lips–and this one doesn’t thanks to it’s infusion of vitamin e and monoi tahiti butter. two thumbs up for this nude shade as well–not too pinky or too mauve, but a “your lips but better” tone.
  • evelyn iona cream blush-i’m impressed with this company because they are a natural & organic company that is cruelty free and paraben free. evelyn iona also donates $1 from every product purchased to women’s organizations. now onto the product review: cream blush isn’t my thang, but i’ll give this a subjective review! the color is a sweet rosy pink that gives your cheeks a very natural, blushed look. the consistency of the blush isn’t sticky or heavy, but creamy and soft. it does blend in well, but i noticed that after blending the opaqueness went away. this might be well suited for ladies who just want a flush of color!
  • bayberry naturals moisturizer-contains no sulfates,phthalates, fragrances or dyes. it is  81% organic and 100% vegan. i haven’t work this on my face yet, but i have rubbed in into my hand to see how it felt. it’s definitely not greasy or heavy, and feels smooth to the touch. i will be giving it a go on my face this afternoon!
  • vasanti brightenUp! facial exfoliating cleanser-i previously received this in a birchbox subscription, and i enjoyed it. the exfoliating beads are very fine and coarse, which is what gives the cleanser the ability to remove dead skin and brighten the skin. i would recommend using this 1-2 times a week as it could be harsh on your skin if used more.

about ipsy

from their website, “Each month, subscribers will receive a beautiful Glam Bag with deluxe samples and full-sized beauty products. Members can watch and play along with the stylists with the same products that they are using. All for only $10 a month.”

join ipsy using my referral link and become a glam bag subscriber today!!!!



a sunday well spent brings a week of content


products pictures

  • l’oreal magic skin beautifier BB cream in 820-anti redness [i enjoy using this bb cream when i’m having a low key day. the formula is a little runny, but absorbs well and it feels light on the skin. perfect product to provide a “your skin but better” glow.]
  • revlon photo ready eye primer + brightener in 003 [i love that revlon packaged this in a pen form. the twist up applicator makes it easy to swipe product wherever it’s needed. this primer is not thick and it’s certainly more of a “no makeup” make up look item, as the coverage is very light.]
  • e.l.f countouring blush & bronzing powder in st. lucia [how sleek is this $3 compact? good job, e.l.f.! i use the bronzer shade to chisel out my cheek bones and to give the rest of my face a hint of color. i don’t go crazy with this stuff as i use just enough to make my face look awake and refreshed.]
  • milani baked blush in luminoso [do i talk about this in every post? i think i might. do yourself and your face a favor, and buy this stuff at walgreens. it’s the best drug store blush on the market. i prefer to swirl my blush brush around in it dry, but since it’s baked, you can apply water or fix+ to amplify the product pay off. luminoso is a lovely coral with a hint of golden sheen. perfect for an easy blush look.]
  • real techniques bold metals collection brush in 101 [this is considered a foundation brush, but in the world of makeup, you can used brushes and products in any sort of fashion. so i would use as a two fold item-for your bronzer and blush, just to keep it easy. the bristles are tapered which is easy for contouring, and the tip of the brush is awesome for dusting a little blush on the apples of your cheeks.]
  • nyx soft matte lip cream in cannes [i would compare this shade to a mauve-y, brick red. the formula is unreal for the price, and it does a pretty decent job of staying and not flaking off. as with any liquid matte lip color, please be careful after a couple hours of wear because you will most likely have a funny looking cluster of product on your inner lip rim–it’s just the nature of the beast!

i hope you enjoyed my simplesunday drugstore makeup look! i would love to hear what y’all are loving on sunday’s and each day of the week! new product recommendations are always welcomed, too! take care.


bb cream BOMBSHELL

rimmel london BB cream radiance 9-in-1 skin perfecting super makeup

image3 (4)

the fuss

OH MY GOSH-i love this stuff. i wish that’s all i had to write to convince y’all of the amazing wonders of this BB cream, but i am not naive to the fact that it isn’t. i’m going to bullet point list the reasons why this $7.00 BB cream really is “super makeup”:

  • light weight formula with SPF 20
  • gives skin a smoothing effect
  • stays put on the skin in hot climates
  • provides build-able, medium coverage
  • moisturizes the skin without making you oily or greasy
  • doesn’t need to be used with a primer, although i prefer too
  • forumla does not break up on the skin meaning, it lasts 8+ hours

the benefits of wearing a BB cream over a traditional foundation are that BB creams are typically lighter in formula, provide SPF coverage, and often contain anti-oxidants that provide additional skin care benefits. rimmel’s radiance BB cream does provide the skin with a semi- opaque coverage, but please do not confused that with thinking it’s cakey or un-natural looking. it’s quite the opposite. the only draw back to this product is that rimmel only came out with two shades: light and medium. the good news is that the shades do match a range of skin tones in the fair-medium category, but unfortunately if your skin is olive or darker, these products won’t be ideal for your skin. i hope rimmel will soon update the shades and provide additional colors for all skin tones!


le matte & la lacque

matte-r of fact


lacque and roll

image2 (11)

about this product

l’oreal debuted this line back in june/july of 2015 which featured 5 matte shades, and 5 high-gloss shades. l’oreal stuck to the “nude to pink” theme with the colors of this line, but hey, those colors work for most customers. the packaging is slick, easy to throw in your bag, and the cap locks tightly allowing you to be worry-free when using these on the go!


le matte‘s formulation is a highly pigmented matte product that glides on with a creamy texture. once on your lips, the lipstick does begin to set and after 5-10 minutes of wear. i love that this color stains your lips a touch, because if you eat and drink with it on, it is highly less noticeable when it wears off. i wish i could make claims that this formula was “budge proof”, but it all reality, i do experience some shifting of the product during it’s wear on my lips. regardless, the color “matte-r of fact” is an eye catching, AMAZING berry fuchsia shade that is great for all skin tones if you’re wanting a bold lip!

la lacque‘s formulation gives a high-gloss, shiny look to your lips and applies like butter. this product seriously glides over your lips and makes them feel luxurious and moisturized. i often have to stop myself from applying too much of this stuff–because it feels that good on your lips! when you first put this lipstick on, it does have a bit of a tacky feel to it, but like the le matte, after about 5-10 minutes of wear it does set. you will not see any dry lips, fine lines, or chapped areas when wearing the la lacque lipstick which is a huge reason i fell in love! my lips are naturally on the drier side, and i hate when lipstick clumps and gathers onto dry areas of my lips. this stuff doesn’t let that happen. shine baby, shine!

L to R
[matte-r of fact, choco-late, lacque and roll]

image1 (24)


maybelline color tattoo

maybelline color tattoo 24hr eyeshadows: creamy beige–deep forest–bad to the bronze–vintage plum

image1 (23)


•creamy beige–part of the leather collection, satin finish with a slight illuminated sheen
•deep forest–part of the leather collection, matte finish
•bad to the bronze–part of the cream gel collection, foiled shimmer finish
•vintage plum–part of the leather collection, matte finish

how to apply

i prefer to apply these with my finger tips! the heat from your skin helps loosen up the product and gives it a smoother application. you can totally use a flat shader brush to apply this as well for a more intense look, or a blending brush for a smooth transition effect in your crease.

why to buy

these 24hr shadows are so great in a hurry! if you’re in a pinch for time, use your handy fingers and apply a quick layer to your lids and blend–voila! you’re ready, set, go. they do last the longest and crease less if you apply them over a primer or concealer. sometimes i use them as an eyeshadow base to prep the lid for other colors i’m applying–works like a charm! also, the color tattoo collection is lovely applied on their own, but you can always dress them up with other color combos for a night out or a special occasion! there are 5 leather collection shades, 10 cream gel collection shades, and 5 metal collection shades that you can purchase at any drug store, ulta, or!


e.l.f. matte lip sticks

“pour yourself a drink, put on some lipstick, and pull yourself together.”-elizabeth taylor

image2 (10)

[top to bottom]

•tea rose–hints of mauve, dusty rose shade
•berry sorbet–shades of fuschia and berry
•natural–your lips but better shade


light weight, matte formula that has hydrating characteristics. i get a slight minty taste when i first apply this lip product, and it quickly fades away as it melts into your skin. this is a semi long lasting formula, but i do find that after about 4 hours you need to reapply. my one gripe about these lip sticks is that they do leave a ring (dare i say crusty?) in your inner lips after that 4 hour mark. i don’t let it bother me too much since the price point is so incredible, and the shade ranges provide almost any color your heart could desire.


i wanted to feature these matte lip color’s by e.l.f. for 3 major reasons–they are affordable ($3), they are convenient to throw in your purse, and they are hydrating on the lips. you get a solid color pay off from these lippies, and you won’t find your lips flaking off while wearing them. e.l.f. does sell 12 shades on their website ranging from neutrals to bright pinks to brick reds. target also sells a few different colors as well. regardless of where you buy them, the point is to buy them and try them out, ha!


smooth skin foundation

maybelline’s dewy+smooth foundation

nars radiant creamy concealer

image4 (1)


the dewy+smooth foundation in 125 nude beige literally glides over my skin. i apply it with a damp real techniques sponge in dabbing motions all over my face. if i have specific problem area, i will apply a second layer. this foundation helps reduce the look of pores on my skin, evens out any discoloration, and still provides a natural looking finish–not too cakey.

the radiant creamy concealer in chantilly gives my skin a medium coverage look. it brightens any dark circles and helps camouflage red patches or acne. i bought the lightest shade in this line because i’m really digging the bright under eye trend at the moment. i do blend in my concealer with a damp real techniques sponge, and i make sure that there isn’t a distinct line between my concealer and foundation. if you’re like me and love this look, the secret is to apply a few additional dots of concealer right under the eye and let it “bake” for about 5-10 minutes, and then blend blend blend downwards in tapping motions.


before: image3 (3)

after:image2 (9)


for $5.99, this foundation provides your face with a dewy, non-oily canvass. your skin will look smoother, and have a more even tone all over. even though the concealer is pretty pricey at $29.00, it covers like a magician. instead of having to use multiple concealers each day you could invest in this product and get away with using only one concealer that provides amazing coverage, and brightness.


starter brush kit

this brush kit is ideal for all makeup lovers alike, but if you’re looking to start up your brush collection these are a few to get you on the right track! easily accessible at almost any drug store.

image1 (20)


real techniques brushes
[L to R]

  1. contour brush
    1. part of the core collection brush set, retails for $17.99
    2. this petite dome shaped brush is great for chiseling your cheek bones when trying to achieve a contoured look.
  2. buffing brush
    1. part of the core collection brush set, retails for $17.99
    2. this flat topped brush great for applying your foundation, and truly buffs it all in to achieve a flawless makeup look.
  3. power brush
    1. retails for $9.99
    2. this huge fluffy brush is great for powdering your entire face. this brush allows you to reach a lot of surface area with your powder products all at once.
  4. blush brush
    1. retails for $8.99
    2. my favorite brush listed! the shape of the bristles is what makes this product stand apart from others–the dome, tulip shape. it really nestles in closely to your cheek bones to provide a more natural application of blush.  i *love* this brush. if you buy one real techniques brush, let it be this one!!
  5. setting brush
    1. retails for $7.99
    2. this brush is petite in size and really fits perfectly into the crevasses or smaller areas of your face. i use this brush to highlight my cheekbones and anywhere else i feel like drawing attention too.  you could also use this brush to apply your under eye setting powder, if you fancy! it would fit perfectly into the shape of the eye socket!
  6. bronzer brush [in the middle]
    1. reatils for $12.99
    2. my newest purchase. this bronzer brush is retractable and has dual fiber bristles that help provide a more natural, even application of product. i find that the flat shape of the brush allows it to fit perfectly in the hollows of my cheek bones, and around my forehead to provide a natural bronzed glow.

where to purchase

•Target [availability varies]
•Walgreens [availability varies]
•Walmart [availability varies]