Good morning friends,

Have you tried Smashbox?

I went to Ulta a couple of weeks ago intending to buy the Too Faced Primed and Poreless face primer when one of the saleswomen there pointed at the primer in my hand and told me I shouldn’t buy that, but to try a Smashbox primer instead.

“Smashbox invented face primers,” she said, and ushered me over to the Smashbox display to ooh and ahh at the abundance of multi-colored primers that the company offered.

By pure happenstance, I’m sure, Ulta was offering a Smashbox best seller’s box that included a full-sized Smashbox primer along with trial-size versions of their Full Exposure mascara, mascara primer, eye shadows and eye shadow primer.

It’s a much better deal, she insisted. The Too Faced primer was $30 while the Smashbox best seller’s box was only $39. It was a good deal indeed, I thought. So I bought the box, fully aware of the fact that the saleswoman got what she wanted.

And I am one happier lady because of it.


bare naked faceLet’s start out with my bare naked face + primer + five hours of sleep.  Smashbox has literally a dozen primers, and I was absolutely mesmerized when I stood in front of that display at Ulta and swatched every single one of them on my hand. I actually ran out of hand, and had to start swatching on my biceps, but that’s besides the point.

The primer that is included in the best sellers box is the Smashbox Photo Finish Light Oil-Free primer. I was told that this primer is great for oily skin and makes your pores look smaller. If you think I won’t snatch up any product that promises to gives me matte skin and smaller pores than you must be new here. The primer feels very light and absorbs into the skin quickly. I’ve been using the primer for a few weeks now, and I can say it has really changed my make-up focused life. This is a new must-have product for me and my face just doesn’t look the same if I don’t wear it. If you haven’t tried one of Smashbox’s famous primers yet, you should!

And no, I am not being paid by Smashbox to say this. I honestly believe it!

Eye shadow primer, and eye shadow


Next to the face primer, the Smashbox eye shadow primer is my favorite product in the box. It truly makes your eye shadow last ALL DAY and look AMAZING. I now wear the primer whenever I wear eye shadow. It blows Urban Decay’s Primer Potion out of the water.

I was worried when I applied it at first because the primer is very white, and it made my eyelid look ashy. But you can’t see the whiteness when you apply the eye shadow on top, and I believe the contrast in color makes the eye shadow pop. Amazing.

eye shadowCan we talk about the colors in the eyeshadow trio for a second? We will. I am obsessed with the rose-gold color you see in the upper right corner of the palette. It is gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous, and the three colors all look amazing together. I also really like the dark brown crease color at the bottom. It isn’t too dark, so it is appropriate to wear during the day and to work.

I haven’t gotten a handle yet on inner eye highlights, so I can’t speak much for the white color in the upper left corner, but I do really like the color. It is an off-white, so not too crazy looking to put in the inner corner.

Mascara primer and mascara

mascaraI’ve never tried a mascara primer before, and I can’t say that this primer made a huge difference when used under mascara. The saleswoman at Ulta told me that you can also wear this primer alone before going to bed to strengthen and condition your lashes overnight, but I haven’t tried that just yet.

The Full Exposure mascara is good, but not great. I am just such a Too Faced Better Than Sex fangirl that the next mascara I try will have to blow my socks off. Full Exposure didn’t do that, but it is a decent mascara. Better than the Maybelline Rocket and Covergirl Clump Crusher for sure.




Overall, I was very impressed with many of the Smashbox products offered in the box. The face primer and eye shadow primer are my new favorite things, and make my world a better place. Are you familiar with Smashbox? What are your favorite and least favorite products from them?

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Hi friends,

Firstly I’d like to apologize for being MIA these last two weeks. I am falling behind on my two post per week goal, however I have been busy rearranging my time, my mind, and place I call home. Right now I am enjoying sometime in Los Angeles. I can’t wait to move here. I hope you all have the chance to go on vacation and visit your happy places too.

Don’t worry, I have more make-up and beauty posts coming soon!


Hi friends,

Today I am reviewing my first ever MAC foundation. Pretty cray that I have gone all these years without ever trying one of their foundations, even though I have been through pots and pots of their well-known concealer.

A few posts ago, I raved about the L’Oreal Lumi True Match foundation (link), so you may be wondering why I went out and bought another foundation. I like the L’Oreal foundation, but now I am starting to regret getting the lumi version. The lumi gives you a nice glow, but it gives me more of a oily sheen after a couple of hours. It has okay coverage, and is overall a nice, normal foundation but I am not a normal kind of girl (though I am nice). I will reserve the L’Oreal foundation for days out and about for a natural look. Sometimes, though, I want a wee bit more.

Because I have a wedding to attend soon, I knew the L’Oreal foundation wouldn’t hold up all day, especially in the hot Georgia sun. Outdoor weddings in July are an…interesting choice. So I wanted something more heavy duty and decided to try a MAC foundation.

And…I love this foundation. But actually, I do.

It covers my blemishes so well and it truly lasts all day. It doesn’t make me look oily, and it’s truly a little miracle in a bottle. And I honestly think it makes a difference in the appearance of my entire face, because the MAC foundation provides such a nice base (poet). I don’t even have to wear concealer with this foundation, it’s that good!

The proof is in the pudding. This is me wearing the MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation over a Smashbox primer (review coming soon), with some under eye concealer on top. Please excuse my untamed brows.


One downside that I have to mention is that the foundation will transfer to your sheets, shirt collars, pillows, boyfriend’s shoulder, and whatever else your face touches. This was the reason I stopped using the MAC concealer if I do recall, it just got on everything!

~Remember to SUBSCRIBE to my blog to see more awesome beauty, food, and fun related posts! My next giveaway will be coming around sooner than you think 😉

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Happy August, friends!

August is my favorite month, and it has nothing to do with the fact that it is my birthday month (lies). July was a very hectic and stressful time for me, and I am just so happy it’s August. Remember that whenever you are going through a rough patch, it always gets better. August is the start of a new chapter of my life, and I am excited to see what happens.

I hope you all have a lovely August.
Nuance Salma Hayek
One of my favorites during the month of July was the Nuance Wild Lime Exfoliating Facial Gel which has really improved my skin with every use. A few months ago I decided that I wanted to dip into the world of skin exfoliation, so I started out this with this gel. At first I wasn’t too impressed, because when I think ‘exfoliate’ I imagine a mask that consists of little beads. When I use this gel product it doesn’t feel like it’s doing anything, but I’ve used it at least once a week for a few months and I will say I’ve noticed a big difference. My face feels softer and more radiant, and I swear this makes my pores look smaller! I mentioned in a previous post (link) that I have had a lifelong battle with my big pores, and I really think this product cleans and minimizes them.
Better Than Sex
 Better Than Sex. That’s a big claim there, Too Faced. A big one. And I won’t get into whether or not this mascara is better than sex (hint: it’s not) but it is better than They’re Real, Clump Crusher, Full Exposure, The Rocket, and every other mascara I have ever tried. This mascara is ahmazing. I don’t think I can go back to using any other mascara ever again. When I first applied it I thought that it was maybe too heavy to wear to work or during the day, but it’s not too overwhelming. It makes your lashes look very dark and full, and I just love that. I also like the heavy, pink tube that it comes it. I look very chic and pretty. Have you tried Better Than Sex? What is your favorite mascara?
Ulta lotion
I love the smell and the size of this Pomegranate Lime lotion from Ulta. LOVE the smell. I keep this in my purse and it is very light and moisturizing, and most importantly cheap! I also have a full sized lotion from Ulta that I am very impressed with. I plan to stick with Ulta lotions until I muster the funds to go after my wish list lotion – the pomegranate scent from Hempz.
This Swissco makeup sponge has improved my makeup game tenfold. I don’t think I can go back to using brushes now that I see how evenly this little dude applies foundation to my face. I raved about this product in an earlier post (link) and I am now officially a sponge convert. The only sad thing is that I hear you have to switch out your sponges every month for hygienic reasons, and this little dude’s time is just about up. I am curious to see if there is a huge difference between this cheap little dude that I picked up at Ulta, or the much more expensive sponges from Stila and Beauty Blender. For the time being, I plan to stick with Swissco.
We meet again Nuance. We meet again. There has got to be something good in this line’s skincare products, because both of this moisturizer and the just are just fantastic. This Renewed Radiance Nutrifying Night Cream is the first product I tried from the Nuance line, and I would repurchase it in a heartbeat. This cream is very hydrating and cooling. After I rub my makeup off at the end of the day and wash my face, applying this cream feels like a spa treatment. It is so soothing and just plain ol’ feels good on the skin, which I really appreciated after so many stressful July days and nights. I highly recommend, and I am eyeing some other products from the Nuance line now. Maybe I will pick up the eye cream or anti-aging cream next. Salma’s got a great thing going here.


~Remember to SUBSCRIBE to my blog to see more awesome beauty, food, and fun related posts! My next giveaway will be coming around sooner than you think 😉


Feeling social? Follow me on instagram @sammsimone