Check Out My NARS Birthday Gift, Plus COTW!

Thanks, Sephora!
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Kelly
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Thanks, Sephora!

I don't go to Sephora too often these days, but I knew I had to make one trip this month if only for my free birthday gift. (I turn 25 on Monday!)

Sephora did good this time, I have to say. I love NARS lip pencils, but I only own one (Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dolce Vita) since they're kind of pricy. So I was thrilled to add two more to my collection for free. I don't even care that they're miniature-sized; it makes them easier to tote around. 

Here is what NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella looks like on my lips:

NARS Cruella

NARS Cruella

And here is what NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien looks like on me:

NARS Rikugien

NARS Rikugien

Cruella is such a perfect matte, true red and it's so easy to apply (although I do have to watch out for feathering near the edges of my lips). Plus, it lasts for ages and ages. I'm so happy I finally have this classic red in my collection.

I didn't think I would like Rikugien because a light shimmery pink isn't normally my cup of tea, but it's surprisingly flattering. The shimmer isn't too much, and the pink adds a nice touch of color. I also love how easy it is to swipe on, and the satin finish is a little better for dry lips than Cruella. This is actually my new everyday shade. 

Now it's time for your Comments of the Week!

1. I often have to remind myself of this when applying beauty products in the summer so thanks, "Shmoe":

SUNSCREEN PSA. If you're really looking for effective sun protection, you need about a nickel to a quarter sized blob of sunscreen for your face alone. Sometimes this is a lot to use of combo products (foundation+SPF, moisturizer+SPF), but if you're not using that full amount, you're probably not getting the full SPF advertised. Combo products are great, but trying to "stretch" a product takes away from the SPF. PSA is done!

2. "traumica" has a good idea for using these tinted top coats:

This reminded me of when I was a kid, and I wasn't allowed to wear bright nail polish to school, so I used to add drops of bright nail polishes to a bottle of clear nail polish, just to get a wash of color. And an idea - maybe these top coats could be used to make ombre effect on nails? Like, having a pale, solid color as a base and then layering coats of tinted ones on each nail?

3. "Ella Marigold" amused and fascinated me in equal measure with her story of using the makeup baking technique back in the '90s: 

This makes me feel so old! But this is pretty much the way everybody did it in the early 90s. If you caked and baked enough, you could go clubbing and STILL have your make-up on when you got home. (Lips would be overdrawn with Spice lip liner by MAC and filled in with something nudish from MAC or Clinique. Then they would be powdered over a hundred times too and re-lined with Spice and powdered again so they would not move.) The only recurring issue I remember is that it's not easy to get the moisturizer/concealer/foundation ratio perfect - by that I mean that if you go too 'creamy' at the beginning you can end up with the whole thing turning into little balls of dough and having to start all over again. Or not enough moisture and you can end up looking and feeling like a dried out old leaf and having considerable trouble speaking or eating. You really have to get used to what your face needs. (Mine needs TONS of moisture which I let sit on for ten minutes before starting.) Funny thing is it looks really freaky in person now - fine on red carpet or Instagram, just odd to think that we used to all hang out like that and nobody found it remotely disturbing...

4. "han car" has some good advice for those who like to wear liquid lipsticks without built-in applicators on the go:

The Sonia Kashuk retractable lip brush from Target is the best makeup brush I've ever purchased, especially for the price. If you need to carry a lip brush, it's the only one that applies product that well, that is that soft and comfortable, and that stores that securely. I would have bought several more by now, but they can be cleaned so easily that I don't feel the need to buy another. Also, the -click!- when it closes is really satisfying. Please pardon any grammatical or typographical errors, as I am tipsy.

I say we need more tipsy commenting, based on that gem!

  • What's the best free beauty gift you've ever received? 
  • Did you get these NARS lip pencils as a birthday gift from Sephora? What do you think, is it the best one so far? 
  • Tell me your 25th birthday stories if you have any, please! (I personally have an entire week of debauchery planned.)