Makeup Haul: City Color Cosmetics

Aaaaand more makeup I bought and probably shouldn’t have. Especially because I had been researching “mousse” eyeshadow (which for some reason appeals to me more than cream eyeshadow) and stumbled across the City Color Cosmetics Metallic Shadow Pots which was, when I purchased the bundle, 15 dollars for the 6-color-galaxy-themed-product described as a “mousse shadow” and LITERALLY THE NEXT DAY the set was an Ipsy Deal for 10 bucks shipped. Well, to make this unnecessary story even longer, I bought another bundle of eyeshadows called “Single Shadows” in a set of 8, also for 15 dollars, because it made sense in my mind to get over the 25 dollar free shipping threshold and pay 30 dollars for 14 shadows, rather than paying 20 dollars for 6 shadows and shipping. Girl logic. So essentially I spent 20 dollars on convenience which could have been avoided if I’d waited a single day.

If you are interested, the mousse shadow bundle is currently 12 dollars on the City Color website. The Single Shadows are no longer offered as a bundle and they are now called City Chic Eye Shadow. It also looks like they are in a new package that has a flip up lid rather than a screw off lid like the ones I bought.


I’m not typically a fan of single shadows. I prefer eyeshadow palettes because of their convenience in both space saving and color presentation. I wear makeup every day, and on week days when I am rushing to get ready for work, juggling a bunch of single shadows in my tiny bathroom is not ideal. But I wanted free shipping and these were on serious sale (they end up being $1.87 for 0.113 oz of product) and I thought, why not? I liked (some of) the shadow names–that Green/Gold/Black shifty one near the bottom is called “Aztec Warrior”–and the colors, which are a bit richer looking in real life (the photos make them look brighter than reality) and are just different enough from everything else I already own to make it okay in my mind…which we’ve already established functions on less-than-reasonable when it comes to makeup.

But these are nice, and I’ll definitely get use out of them.


And these! The whole reason for my order in the first place! They have spacey names and are (again) unlike anything else I own. And they were inexpensive. And I wanted them.


The formula is very thick and very “whipped creamy” though I don’t know if I would go so far as to call them “moussey” because of how thick they are. More like melty jello? Or, like, icecream that isn’t melting? Food analogies!


These guys are very very very long lasting. They dry fairly quickly and when they do, they aren’t budging. And they stain. I think ultimately these colors are too bright for me to wear regularly as an eyeshadow, but I’m thinking I might try to wear them as liner. Any ideas?

More soon,


Note: Pictures taken in natural light. Products purchased by Girl.


Girl Doesn’t Shy From Shadow


2015 was The Year of the Eye Shadow Palette for me. Through some diligent sale stalking, and the generosity of my friends and family for Christmas, my Palette Wish List has been whittled down to this guy:


Give me a good enough excuse and I’ll no doubt find myself in possession of the 2016 Sephora + Pantone Watercolor Palette. I’ve heard mixed things, but I don’t own anything similar and that may be enough reason to try it out for myself.

Girl’s Summer Favorites

It’s finally September. The nights here are getting cooler, my sweaters are coming unboxed, pumpkin spice everything is on its way. And while I don’t have enough makeup (yet!) to make monthly favorites worth the post, I can more than fill you up on seasonal favorites. These are the things I’ve really enjoyed over the course of my summer:


Books and beauty products are two of my most loved functional art objects.


Stay, Illusion by Lucie Brock-Broido is a book of really stunning, eerie poetry. “Each child still has one lantern inside lit. May the Mother not / Blow her children out.”

And the It Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Vol 1 Matte Luxe Transforming Eye Shadow Palette…really soft, nicely pigmented, totally wearable matte shadows. I really really like these colors, even if they are housed in a weirdly puffy fleshy pink velvet palette.


The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton is also a breathtaking and eerie book, this one fiction set in the late 1600s. Highly highly recommend if you like historical fiction, or poetic prose, or mystery, or magic realism.

Luna Sleeping Night Oil by Sunday Riley is worth every penny. I saw results in a couple days and my skin only continues to get better.

L’Oréal Infallible Pro Matte 24HR Foundation is my very favorite foundation. Ever. I have to mix two shades to get a match but totally worth the hassle.

Tarte Showstopper Clay Palette isn’t something I needed in my life but with Ulta points and coupons I got it for a decent discount and I’m glad I’ve gotten to play with it. The shadows are pretty and soft and the palette travels well.


At the Mouth of the River of Bees by Kij Johnson is a collection of strange and haunting short stories, each one more bizarre and heart-breaking than the next.

That H&M gold spike necklace has rarely left my neck.

My two favorite nail polishes for the summer were L’Oréal 109 Orange You Jealous and Essie Cashmere Matte in Comfy in Cashmere. The coral color I wore on my toes almost constantly, but the Essie Cashmere Matte colors chip within only hours of drying so I wore that color only when I was prepared for the upkeep.

The Malin + Goetz mojito lip balm came in an Ipsy and it is by far the best lip treatment I have ever used. It has a gel-like texture and I only wear it at night because it is thick…but it smells and tastes delicious, and it restores my lips to their full health in a single night, despite whatever moisture sucking liquid lipstick I wore that day.

Rimmel’s Stay Matte Powder in translucent is a new product to me, even though it has been a cult favorite for so long. I don’t like caking powder on top of my foundation, I always feel like it makes my makeup look unnatural and heavy. But I’m giving this one the chance to change my mind. I think it’s working.

Last are the two lip colors I have been wearing most often, NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Cannes (a mauvy nude) and Jordana Modern Matte in Matte Bare ( a dusty pink nude). I loved both of these (very similar!) colors even though they seem to be more Autumn-appropraite than summer-bright. But Girl does what she wants.

More soon,


Girl Doesn’t Have an Expensive Face

These are the products I’ve been using on an everyday basis, with slight variations to lip color or mascara. I’ve included only products I’ve purchased myself, excluding anything I’ve gotten from a subscription service to provide an accurate idea of the “cost” of my face.


Primer: Smashbox Photo Finish More Than Primer Blemish Control $16.00 at Sephora.

Foundation: L’Oréal Infaillible Pro-Matte Foundation (In 101 Classic Ivory & 102 Shell Beige) $11.99 at Target.

Eye Shadow: It Cosmetics Naturally Pretty Vol 1 Palette $42.00 at Ulta.

Mascara: Maybelline Volum’ Express The Falsies Mascara $6.99 at Ulta. 

Lip Treatment: Smith’s Rosebud Salve $6.00 at Sephora.

Lip Gloss: NYX Butter Gloss (in Créme Brûlée) $4.99 at Ulta.

Lip Cream: NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream (In Zurich) $5.99 at Ulta.

Total across three stores (not including taxes!): $105.95



So, from Sephora and Target I bought primer and foundation and lip salve at full price because I’d convinced myself I needed those things exactly at that moment and couldn’t wait for deals or coupons. When I repurchase the foundation I will wait until Ulta has L’Oréal at 40% off, or at least buy-one-get-one at 50 % off.

Everything I purchased from Ulta was discounted first by deals and then by coupons because Ulta always has a $3.50 off $10.00 or 20% off one item coupon running. The eyeshadow palette was on super-deal one day only for 50% off and I snatched it off their website. I had to pay shipping but. worth. it. The lip products and the mascara were all purchased during 40% off “brand” sales which Ulta does periodically with the drugstore brands they carry.

Primer: $16.00

Foundation: $23.98

Eye Shadow: $26.95

Mascara: $4.19

Lip Treatment: $6.00

Lip Gloss: 2.99

Lip Cream: $3.59

Total (not including taxes or coupons!): $83.70

Taking into account that mascara should only live to be 3 months old (but who actually throws out half a tube of perfectly useable mascara?) and that primer is a half size but that the eye shadow and lip products have much longer lasting power… if these potions and tinctures lasted me an average of sixth months and I wore them seven days a week, my face costs about $0.46 a day.

Note: Pictures taken in natural light. Products purchased by Girl.

Girl Doesn’t Do Any Ol’ Eye Shadow Palette

I’m discerning when it comes to, well, everything. I’m picky. I know what I like. And when it is time to spend my money on anything (but really, we’re talking cosmetics/skincare), I only want to invest in products that can hold up to my expectations. I’m not a try-it-and-see-if-I-like-it type. I’m a research-the-fuck-out-of-it-and-if-after-weeks-I-still-think-I-neeeeeed-it-then-maybe-I’ll-bite-the-bullet-and-buy-it type.

That’s how I got into blogging, I guess. I saw how useful the beauty blogging/vlogging world could be when it came to making well-informed choices and finding quality products worth their price tag.

For palettes in particular, I have…not so much rules as general guidelines. Packaging matters to me. Not just aesthetically, though that has serious value, but ergonomically as well. I want the design of my palette to inspire just as much as I want it to be comfortable and easy to use. For me that means shadows organized in a way that appeals to my personal taste (which is hard to nail down…) and isn’t overwhelming. Too many shadows can be just as bad as too few, I think. If I open a palette and have too many options (think any E.L.F palette over 12 shadows…) I set it down and reach for something else.

As well I don’t like bulky or gigantic palettes (think Too Faced), or palettes made of nonsensical material (velvet?!) or palettes that include extra space for that double ended brush that never gets any use. Why should I pay for that junk? I don’t need it, I don’t want it, and I have other options.

It helps to have these “guidelines” because it means I’m not spending as much as I would be otherwise. It narrows down my available avenues, keeping me and my budget in check. As well, it keeps my “collection” small. I want to do more with less and being picky helps me achieve that goal without feeling like I’m missing out on something.


These are palettes I’ve been eyeing lately and they adhere to the guidelines I’ve come to follow. 1. Kat Von D Monarch Eyeshadow Palette $46 at Sephora

I like the look of this palette, the packaging is eye-catching and user-friendly and the autumn colors are my particular kind of jam. I think if I ever invest, I would get a lot of use out of this. Plus, the names of these shadows! Entomology (matte cream), Telepathy (pearl gold), Tiny Death (glitter cream), Wrath (deep pearl orange), Papilio (pearl chocolate), Summerfly (glitter gold), Killing Jar (pearl copper), Delaney (pearl silver), Vanish (matte taupe), Disintegration (pearl brown), Shadow Box (matte chocolate), Deadhead (matte black).

2. Stila Eyes are the Window Shadow Palette in Mind $49 at Sephora

This palette is all matte, which I dig. It looks similar to the Monarch palette in terms of shade range, but I can’t help liking those warm toned browns and oranges with the contrast of cool toned grays and taupes. The packaging is sleek and would likely hold up better than the cardboard of Kat’s palette but I don’t know if I would ever take the plunge and pay fifty monies for it. I like it, I want it, but something keeps me from thinking I would get enough use out of it for the cost. It could be the way the colors are placed that doesn’t completely inspire me to want to smear them on my face, no matter how thoroughly I enjoy them individually.

3. Viseart Eyeshadow Palette in Neutral Matte $80 at Sephora

Oh look, another neutral matte browns palette with a pleasant pop of orange. There is no way I would spend 80 dollars on an eyeshadow palette but that doesn’t mean I won’t window shop this little guy. Similar again in color range, and I should think you don’t need both the Stila palette AND this one but a girl can day dream. Viseart claims to create makeup formulas that harness the best of natural and organic resources with modern technology (yay good for you ingredients) and they are an artisan brand from Paris (ooooh, French cosmetics). There is something appealing to me about all of that, which adds an allure to this palette that the other (less “artisanal” la de da) palettes lack. Extra points for marketing?

More soon,