April Favorites: Beauty.

Can I be insanely cliche and predictable for a moment?


April Beauty Favorites I howsweeteats.com


I’m seriously freaking out that it is (almost) May already. It’s scary.

Anyway, let’s talk makeup! It’s only my favorite day of the month. And I’m being totally truthful. This is my absolute favorite day because I like discussing makeup-y things with other beauty obsessed people. I have a couple repeats this month which may be annoying, but honestly… they are my favorites and this is what I use. It’s not like I just pick stuff out to put in these posts. This is allllll what’s going down on my face.

Let’s get to it.

MAC Lipglass in Nicki I howsweeteats.com

First up, lipglass! You might remember that I have major love affair with MAC dazzleglass, but long before those came out I was hooked on their lipglass, as I’m sure many of you were. The above is one of my all-time favorite pinks. This is actually my second tube, which speaks volumes if you’re a lipgloss person, but I flew through my first one last summer. It’s so pretty-pinky-coraly and I just adore it. It’s the Nicki lipglass and it’s always in my purse. It’s actually sort of similar to a NYX butter gloss I mentioned a few months ago (which I still ADORE) but this one is much more opaque. The NYX ones are a bit more sheer.

Revlon Darling, Charm, Cherish - NYX Nude Pink Liner I howsweeteats.com

Okay. Next. This is sort of a funny story. Well, not really. So – I am totally not a lip stain girl. I actually HATE when my lips are stained, mainly because in the past any sort of “stain” has been translated to your lips being hot pink for eons. I also actually love to reapply gloss or lipstick – heck, even change colors throughout the day. I mean, I can never make up my mind. A few months ago, Jessica introduced me to these revlon kissable balm stains and even gave me one for my birthday. While I liked them, I still couldn’t get behind the whole stain (even though these mostly stain in the color they show) and set them aside. But… I used it earlier this month and decided I liked it. So much so that I had to go and buy a few more colors – these are (from top to bottom) darling, charm and cherish.

OMG. After getting these ones, I became freakishly obsessed. I am in love with them, and even more so? I’m in love with LAYERING them! I will mix two different ones and use combos of the three above, plus the first one I had (which is in honey). I still sometimes use gloss on top and I still find that I reapply the heck out of them, but I can’t get enough. These shades are so perfect for spring and summer.

I am also not a lipliner girl but this color is perfect for defining my lips when using these colors and not looking like a crazy person.

Korres Lip Butter in Jasmine I howsweeteats.com

Since you’ve listened to me whine about how incredible the Korres Jasmine lip butter is for the last four months, I was super excited to get the little squeeze tube of the same product in a gift set. It doesn’t seem to have the milky wash of color that the tub does, but it still smells the same (aka perfect) and feels like heaven on your lips. If you don’t like dipping your finger into the original tub, this is a win.

Benefit Cha Cha Tint I howsweeteats.com

Cheek stuff! This is another sample that I’ve had for ages. To be frank, I don’t really like Benefit products. I think they can be sort of hype-y. I REALLY loved them back in high school and wanted everything they put out, so maybe that is why I am not as enthralled these days? There are a couple of blushes that I have and like, but other than that, I’m not a huge fan. Yes, that includes the They’re Real mascara. Don’t like it. It does nothing for me. BUT. Since I’m hooked on coral, this cha cha tint is becoming my best friend. I really have learned to love cream blush (I talked about one of my other favorites in February) and while this is a bit more liquidly, I love how it blends. It’s definitely not as scary as it looks in the photo. It’s super fun! I think it would also look even better on darker skin tones.

Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Exposed and Tipsy I howsweeteats.com

And yes, I’m still faithful to my favorite tarte blushes. I’ve mentioned these both before but if I’m in a rush (or just if I… want them), these colors are my go-tos. The one of the left is exposed, which I think will always be in my makeup bag. The right shade is tipsy and is so much fun for this time of year. Again, it’s not scary. I adore it. I love these things.

Real Techniques Brush I howsweeteats.com

While on the topic of blushes, I want to smash my entire face into this brush. Holy crap, it is so flippin’ soft. I don’t necessarily use it for blush all the time – sometimes for powder or even bronzer or something, but it is SO FLUFFY. It is by real techniques and I get it at Ulta. It is much cheaper than any brush from MAC and feels like a darn cloud on your face.

Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette I howsweeteats.com

Moving on to eyes… yeah, still losing it over the naked basics palette. It’s still strange for this color lover but it’s perfect. I have no other words. Except: adore.

MAC talent pool, trax and steamy I howsweeteats.com

Buuuut… I still can’t let go of all color. As you can tell, these babies are well loved. From the right, these are MAC talent pool (which I think was limited edition or something but it is YEARS old), trax and steamy. Three of my all-time faves and colors I clearly use constantly. I always reach for these, even if it’s to use a liner brush and put them on my lower lash line with natural shadow on top.

MAC Pigment in Blue Brown I howsweeteats.com

And to continue my pigment infatuation from last month: I know I shared a bunch of (old) favorites, but this is a new one I picked up because I LOST MY MIND OVER THE COLOR. It’s MAC steel blue and the pics don’t even do it justice. In all my old MAC gift sets, there was only one blue pigment and it was such a dark navy that it almost appeared black. I just love this so much. And I’ll probably have it for, like, ten plus years.

Urban Decay 24/7 Liner in Underground I howsweeteats.com

Oh oh oh!! Oh my gosh. I am also really excited about this. You guys know I love my 24/7 liners (when urban decay released the liner vault earlier this month it took everything in me not to purchase a $300 box full of eyeliner), but brown is never a color I gravitate towards. HOWEVER. This shade, underground, is such a cool brown. It’s almost like… what’s the word… metallic like? Chromographic? I have no idea but it’s not just plain old brown. If you go to Ulta or Sephora and try it on your hand that move it around, you’ll totally see what I mean. It changes shades in the light!

Loreal Voluminous and Maybelline The Falsies Mascara I howsweeteats.com

Since I haven’t mentioned mascara since January, I thought I’d update you on what I’m using. I’m still gung ho about loreal voluminous carbon black, but I tend to combine it with this maybelline falsies flared. I actually don’t know why I didn’t mention the latter back in January – I’ve been using it for probably six months and I feel like it separates my lashes (which are short, stubby and nonexistent, hence why I always wear fakes which prob makes it worse) while lengthening too. I’m all about length – I could care less about volume. So I like the combo of the two – I’ll start with the maybelline one and finish with loreal.

I’m also still using and adoring my YSL color mascaras but those obviously aren’t everyday. Unless your name is Jessica…

Cover Girl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3 in 1 Foundation I howsweeteats.com

Okay. I can’t believe I’m even talking about this product. For two reasons: one, because it’s foundation and two, because it’s cover girl. Ew, I know, I’m such a makeup snob. I admit it. I mean, I will use practically EVERY BRAND out there before settling on cover girl. Just a mental block, I guess. I was proved wrong though…

I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but I’ve talked about how I loathe foundation and just hate having stuff on my face. It’s gotten a little better since I started using the beauty blender last year and I’ve tried out a handful of foundations just to see how they look. If I take my time, I usually tend to LOVE how my skin looks with them – just so even and flawless. Up until now, my favorite has been this YSL le teint touche eclat. That being said, I only wear it MAYBE once a week. Remember… I work from home and don’t have a life.

The only reason I purchased the above was because all the you tube girls I love were talking about it being so great. I figured since it was fairly cheap that I would give it a shot, and I had actually self-tanned my face and needed something a bit darker that usual anyway. OHMYWORD. I’ve only worn it maybe 5-6 times but ummm… it’s been perfect. I’ve applied with both a brush and a beauty blender. I love it every single time. It has kept my blush on my cheeks like nothing else. I still set it with my MAC Fix+ and just love it.

As a random but slightly relevant side note, I also learned this month that BB cream and foundation look so much better on my skin without a primer. Like many others, I drank the primer koolaid after trying tons and tons of samples. It also just FEELS really awesome on your face. But when I’m going to put something heavier on my skin, I’ve learned that whatever is going on looks much better and more natural without a primer. Riddle me that.

MAC Radiant Rose I howsweeteats.com

Along the same lines as face stuff, I’ve been using this MAC radiant rose concealer under my eyes. Freaking love it. As you can see above, it’s definitely pink toned which always works for me. I still love the maybelline instant age rewind that I talked about in January, but if I am wearing something like foundation on my face, I’ve found that this is easier to use and looks better. I’d say for the last 2-3 months, I’ve used this half the time and the maybelline age rewind the other half.

Aveeno Positively Radiant Moisturizer I howsweeteats.com

Let’s talk about moisturizer. What is your favorite daytime moisturizer with sunscreen?

My absolute favorite is my Trish McEvoy beauty booster cream that I talked about last year. GAH. I love it so much. It has a consistency that I’ve never felt in any other moisturizer. It’s perfect for my slightly sensitive, sort of dry but pretty normal skin. It’s just amazing under makeup or worn alone. However, it’s freakishly expensive and I’m also not thrilled that it’s filled with parabens. I know, I know… a lot of my other products are stocked with them too, but not things that I necessarily use on my body every single day of my life. I know that there is even research out there that parabens aren’t terrible and respected dermatologists that think they may be harmless, but I’m torn. All things in moderation… and my facial moisturizer used every single day is not moderation. I’ve never found anything else that I love as much. I have been using the above aveeno moisturizer and it’s pretty good. I’ve used yes to carrots in the past and when this is gone I may try an Olay one. But thoughts on your favorite?

Tarte Maracuja C-brighter Eye Brightener I howsweeteats.com

My favorite eye creams in the past have been by kiehls and shiseido, but I received this tarte eye treatment in a little set at sephora and really like it a lot. I’m not so much concerned with something decreasing wrinkles – I don’t entirely believe that is possible and at this age, I’m going more for preventative care, but my main goal with any cream for my eyes is moisture. If my under eyes are dry, my concealer can get cakey and then I look even older. Ick. So I tap this on before bed and before I put on makeup. I don’t like that it doesn’t have sunscreen though, so sometimes I will just use my daytime moisturizer as a makeshift eye cream and tap it on so I have some SPF up there. Do it, people. You don’t need a little expensive jar of stuff!

…says the girl who just told you about an $85 moisturizer. Hi, I’m a hypocrite.

St Tropez Tanning Mousse I howsweeteats.com

Moving right along…

Last summer I purchased the wonderfulness known as St. Tropez after sky high recommendations from Heather. Um, it’s the best. As someone with insanely pale skin (no seriously – I am always the first shade in any sort of face makeup and often, the first shade is still too dark), I have tried every self tanner on the market since I was in high school. I never wanted to buy into the St Tropez hype but man… it is not hype. This is not streaky, it is not orange, it dries immediately and has never transferred on to my clothes once.

I can’t really be bothered to self tan that much, but I’ve done it a handful of times now and just love this product. It’s very subtle.

Pacifica Coconut Crushed Pearl Body Butter I howsweeteats.com

Once I have a little color in the summer, I occasionally like to use those pretty, sparkly lotions because I will forever be a 7th grade girl. Let’s talk about this pacifica coconut crushed pearl body butter. I spied this in Whole Foods a few years ago and nearly toppled over when I saw the price tag was near $25. UM WHAT. If I am paying $25 for lotion it better give me legs like Carrie Underwood. And a lot more.

Luckily, around Christmas time it was 50% off at Sephora. Win. It smells like the tropics. Someone take me there please. Only splurge on this if you find it on sale.

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Wash I howsweeteats.com

Don’t mind this upside down photo as I was too lazy to actually remove this bottle from the shower, and therefore climbed in the shower with my camera to take a photo. We have both been using this body wash for the last two months and it’s super gentle and wonderful. (And yes, the men’s facial scrub belongs to my husband.) I still use my Nuetrogena grapefruit body wash with salicylic acid right after workouts or sparingly, but this is our go-to soap. It smells pretty good too.

EOS Shave Cream I howsweeteats.com

Speaking of showering, I haven’t been a shave cream person since my mom told me I wasn’t allowed to shave my legs and I disobeyed her on the first day of sixth grade, but this EOS shave cream from target smells so good I want to eat it. It’s like FROSTING.

Batiste Dry Shampoo I howsweeteats.com

hair hair hair!

Alright. 2013 has been the year I’ve become enamored with dry shampoo. Yes, this translates to I-work-from-home-and-work-15-hour-days-and-barely-shower-let-alone-wash-my-hair but hey – who cares? I’m alone most of the day, thank goodness. I know I shared this back in January, but my Ulta has since starting carrying so many more scents and I am in love with the two above. They are my daily favorites. They smell DELICIOUS. The one on the right is my personal fave, but they were out of it last time I went (and it’s pretty much empty) so I grabbed the cherry. I like it a lot.

As another random but slightly relevant side note: I refused to fall victim to the dry shampoo trend for years. Since I don’t have oily skin (I mean, it never gets oily, ever) – my hair rarely, if ever, gets oily or greasy. And that’s with workouts. It doesn’t need the dry shampoo for that reason, but once I started using this, I fell in love with the volume and texture it gives. Which also says a lot, since my hair has a good bit of volume on it’s own.

Jo Malone Cologne in Ginger Biscuit I howsweeteats.com

Oh hi. I saved the best for last.

Even since I mentioned my favorite perfume in January, people have been coming out of the woodwork telling me I need to try Jo Malone scents. I think that my current perfume will be my forever perfume, but since it’s wildly expensive, I’ve been looking for a scent that I could wear in between to make my favorite last longer. After the taylor swift perfume disaster of 2013, I decided to go with this ginger biscuit cologne and AHHHHHH. This is to die for. After wearing Burberry Brit and Prada for the last almost ten years, I just kinda wanted a change, and now I’m set. Though I have to admit… I still spray that West Side perfume on my body when I’m home alone because I love it so much.

PS: I think this scent is limited edition. Wah.

Whew. I feel like I just talked FOR.EV.ER. Because I did. You know the drill. Tell me your favorites!

[none of this post is sponsored; I bought all of these products myself because I’m a beauty junkie/hoarder. none of these brands know who i am and after listening to me ramble, probably never want to. a few links above are amazon affiliate links.]