Makeup

XCVIII: Mented Cosmetics, What's REALLY Good?

I guess that it’s about time I give Mented Cosmetics a try. I’ve seen ad after ad for their products, but when they made blushes (especially one that came in an orange shade) I could not pass up the chance to give them a try.

So, I got as close to a full face as I could and ended up with:

  1. Skin by Mented Foundation in M30 ($40) W| Foundation Brush

  2. Blush in Peach For The Stars ($22)

  3. Lip Liners: Pretty in Pink and Mented Night ($12)

  4. 3 Semi-Matte Lipsticks (3/$24)

  5. 1 Matte Lipstick ($18)

  6. 1 lipgloss in Send Nudes ($15)

  7. 1 Foundation Finder (Free)

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Lipstick

Dope Taupe, Nude La La, Mented #5, and Pretty In Pink are semi-matte lipsticks (except Pretty in Pink) with a mixture of browns and pinks to create the shockingly perfect nudes for women of color.

These are paraben-free, cruelty free, non-toxic, vegan and blendable lipsticks with a smooth formula.

They come in matte as well as semi-matte formulas and many of them have matching liners!

I love these lipsticks, but the matte shades are my absolute fav!

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Lip Liners

The lip liners are my least favorite. Anytime the lip liner differs from a pencil, I struggle.

This is a retractable lip liner which, I’m sure, is handy for a lot of people, but I suppose I’m a bit heavy handed so anytime that I attempt to apply these they just break off.

Since I lack in the patience area, I just choose to go with different lip liners, but I am sure that there is someone out there who swears by these (maybe even for the color options alone).

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Foundation (M30)

So far, I’ve tried M30, D20, and D30, and I have not found a perfect match in these foundation choices.

D30 was too dark for me, D20 was potentially a good color but had strong olive undertones (which I like but not in excess). So, M30 is about as close as I’ve come to a good match thus far. When I do a soft contour, the foundation looks fine and skin-like. It actually sits on your skin for a while and then takes on a skin-like form which was amazing to me.

The foundation is a creamy formula. It has a hydrating compound that gives you a good base to build your make up on, but may be a struggle for those with oily skin as it is definitely more of a cream than a matte-like foundation.

BUT, this foundation brush is a major key! I love the fluff of this brush and how it works with products whether they’re cream, powder or liquid products. So even if you don’t go for the foundation and foundation brush bundle, you should definitely just pick up the foundation brush!

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Blush

I tend to run towards all earthy tones when it comes to my make up, so usually, when I’m looking for a blush, the blush will be closer to an earthy color than an orange.

BUT, Orange is one of my favorite colors and I always buy orange eyeshadows and, now, blushes!

MY ONLY COMPLAINT:

When brands make a line of BLUSHES that come in different colors, I definitely believe that, IF THEY ARE GOING TO ADD SHIMMER, then they should provide one option with shimmer and one without (or just advertise the blushes as bronzers and move on 🤷🏾‍♀️).

Long story short, I would love it if this orange blush came sans the shimmer. But I’m still going to wear it, shimmer and all.

Overall, I love the products that I got (for the most part) and will definitely be ordering more. I currently have the Mented x ABF bronzer palette in my shopping cart as well as Red & Butter Matte Lipstick, so I will be posting about this brand again and may even record a full faced look using Mented Cosmetics products 🤔 because I hear that their eyeshadow palette is another best-seller.

In all, I am super impressed and look forward to reviewing more colors and more items!

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LIII: Colourpop No Filter Foundation Stix

I struggle with foundations. I struggle to find the perfect shade for my warm dark skin. I struggle to find the perfect formula for my combination (oily and dry) skin.

Colourpop recently released foundation sticks which are the perfect medium between a liquid foundation and a pressed powder. It’s literally a cream foundation in stick form, for those who do not yet use them.

I’m fond of foundation sticks and I normally use either Smashbox or Anastasia Beverly Hills. I am, however, very open to new brands that can better service my color-matching needs.

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The Question Is, Do They Meet My Color-Matching Needs?

Nope!

I have, once again, been let down by the make-up industry and their “many foundation color options”. Again, the amount of brands that brag about all of the colors and shades of foundation that they have compared to the number of African-American women like me who struggle to find a color that doesn’t make us look crazy… 🙄

Maybe my skin tone is not one that comes with a perfect match foundation. I mean, honestly, my skin doesn’t need foundation anyway. I have beautiful skin! But, I do want the option to wear it, so help me out brands! Help me out.

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Left: Deep Dark 197 W

Right: Deep Dark 213 N

Excuse my nails and grubby fingers, nobody’s perfect. 😹

 
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Look at this deception!

It looks like these would be perfect right? One for an all-over foundation and the other for a cool soft contour.

BUT, the color of the inside of our forearm is NOT the color of your face. Of course it won’t work!

Now, this isn’t a complete Hateogram to the whole Colourpop No Filter Foundation Stix line (because Colourpop is over there working pure magic with their products), it’s just me acknowledging and slightly complaining about the fact that, if and when I want to wear make-up, I’ll still be grabbing and blending two foundations to get that base going!

And let’s not even get into bronzers! 🙄

XXXIV: Fenty Beauty #MoroccanSpice Palette, Worth the Money?

It Is a resounding and emphatic 'NO' from me.

This palette has many things wrong with it and very few things right. Now, I love Rihanna! I mostly love her attitude because I swear her amount of unbothered is a forever mood. I also love that she is stealing the make-up, Puma, and lingerie industry but this product is not something that's helped with that takeover at all. 

Where did it go wrong for me?

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Once again we are plagued by the dry formula that is currently attacking the make up industry! Yes, eye shadow is supposed to be a dry product, but this product is a type of dry that makes it more like dust and less like eyeshadow. 

Also, it lacks in pigment. When you put this dry, chalky eyeshadow onto your brush to apply it to your eyes, you get a harsh slide of spaced out product that wouldn't please the most inexperienced of makeup artists (me). 

Because I just can't get over the fact that I spent $60 on an eye shadow palette that I cannot use, I guess we might as well stop the 'cons' here!

But Was There Anything Right?

Yes!

The packaging is absolutely beautiful (maybe that's where the $60 that the palette costs went to and not the actual product). 

When you open the box of the product, there is a purple cardboard slide-out piece which has a top flap that easily pulls open. Once open, you have access to the palette. The palette is about the size of my hand (take into consideration my piano fingers guys). It is a beautiful purple color with a floral design in the middle.

The package is slimmer than a lot of eyeshadow palettes which either means that you get less make up for your buck or that it will be perfect for traveling with the product -- perspective. 

Should You Get It?

Let's assume, in a perfect world, that I just used the wrong eyeshadow primer (because I didn't use the FentyBeauty primer)... Let's assume that Rihanna's primer would make the product apply flawlessly! If this is the case, then yes, get the product. But, I used Urban Decay's Sin eyeshadow primer which is solid gold and goodness, so I know that it is not the case that the primer made this shadow a miss instead of a hit. 

Overall, I'd say that you should pass on this product. HOWEVER, she did come out with a bomb eyeliner with a perfect tip! You should just save about $40 and get that $20 gem instead. 

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XXXI: Mascara, Which is Best?

My most recent struggle presented itself in the form of uninspiring eyelashes! 

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I, like many others, have been whooed by the magic of Too Faced's Better Than Sex Mascara. Only, something has obviously been changed in their formula along the way because my eyelashes just don't come out the same anymore. It seems to have dried up a bit, it's no longer long-lasting, it clumps and it just doesn't get my eyelashes to the lengths that it once did. 

I gave this mascara multiple chances and even made excuses for it -- "Oh, it'll get better", "It's the first time it's messed up, maybe I should give it another chance.", etc. Sounding like a girl that should have walked away a long time ago!

But, I stayed with the hopes that it was me and not the mascara. Once my lashes began to become jet black clumps and not single-strand lashes like I like them, I was pretty much over this mascara and began a hunt for a new one.  

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So, I moved on up! I kept hearing rave reviews about this new mascara by Lancóme, Monsieur Big Mascara. 

Now, I hadn't tried any Lancóme products at all before, so this was a true shot in the dark for me. Taking a $25.00 chance on a new mascara, after Too Faced's mascara betrayed me completely, was difficult!

But, after the first application, I was hooked! This was the perfect jet black mascara. The wand was sturdy the way that I like as opposed to being flimsy. And the bristles are close enough together to get to the baby lashes but not too close as to cause clumping. 

The test with mascara, however, seems to be based upon whether or not they actually last! Now, when I apply my makeup for the day, I do not bring a makeup bag with me to touch it up throughout the day. Once it's on, it's on and I am done. So, I leave it at home. But, over time, the mascara starts to get dry and clumpy within the tube which makes it apply dry and clumpy when you go to wear it. 

I've done a number of tests to see if maybe my apartment gets too hot and causes my mascara to melt and then dry/harden but that wasn't it. The mascara literally starts to dry after about a month of having it (this happened with Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara as well). Maybe it is a flaw with the formula or maybe there's actually something wrong with the way that I store it, but either way, I just can't figure it out. 

So, the winner is: Benefit Cosmetic's Bad Gal  Bang!

This mascara is super lightweight and jet black (just the way that I like it). It lasts all day and really fans out my short, stumpy little lashes. So far, it's great.

I am still waiting to see if, like the others, it begins to dry within a month, but so far it has not shown signs of becoming dry or clumpy.

I highly recommend this mascara, if you haven't found your perfect mascara just yet. Give this one a try and let me know your thoughts! Also, if there's another mascara that you adore, let me know! I'm always on the hunt for a great product.

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