Battle of the Sponges!

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spongesSince I’ve been getting back into using liquid and cream foundations, I’ve developed a bit of an obsession with makeup sponges. In other words, I’ve jumped on the sponge bandwagon. Big time. I started with the realTechniques Miracle Complexion Sponge followed by the Precision Makeup Sponge (a London Drugs knockoff of the Beauty Blender). Finally, I took the plunge and went for the real deal, ordering the Beauty Blender from Sephora. I’ve thoroughly tested all three sponges and am ready to weigh in with my thoughts on each. Do the less expensive knockoffs measure up to the Beauty Blender? Does the Beauty Blender live up to all the hype? Read on to find out!

 

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Review: Dior Fusion Mono Eyeshadow #881 Hypnotique

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270215 004I just finished cleaning my makeup brushes, something I try to do at least once a week. While I was swirling those bristles, I thought to myself: there sure seems to be a lot more brushes to wash than usual. Then it dawned on me that that’s because I’ve been testing out a lot of new products lately, which of course means experimenting to find just the right brush for each product. Several different brushes were dirtied while testing out the product pictured to the right: Diorshow Fusion Mono Long-Wear Eyeshadow in “Hypnotique.”

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A Brush Set for Duo-Fiber Haters

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I’ve reached the conclusion that I am as addicted to buying makeup brushes as I am to makeup itself. I have more than I’ll ever need, and yet, if I see a new brand I’ve never tried, I’ve gotta have it! If I see a unique shape or style of brush, I’ve gotta have it! If realTechniques comes out with something new, I’ve most definitely gotta have it!

My realTechniques collection has steadily grown over the last couple of years. It was slow-going at first, because I had to order them from amazon.com, but now they’re widely available in several stores in my area. London Drugs seems to be committed to carrying the full line now, which makes me very happy. I’ve also seen them popping up in Walmart, Winners and Save-On-Foods.

My most recent addition is the Duo-Fiber Collection:

110115 035I held out on buying this set for some time, because…pause for effect…I hate duo-fiber brushes. Gasp! I’ve acquired several different ones over the years, usually in kits and gift sets, and I never use them. The white bristles are always too spiky and stabby, and often, the difference in length between the white and black bristles makes the brush too floppy. The result is a brush that covers too wide of an area and is difficult to control.

Not so with these. This collection has given me a new appreciation for duo-fiber. The white and black bristles are more evenly blended, and the length difference between them is less pronounced. I find I can actually use these for products that I want to apply sparingly, and I feel like I have complete control. Also, these brushes are soft, not stabby.

1) I use the largest one, the Duo-Fiber Face brush, for a light dusting of powder or bronzer.

2) The medium one, the Duo-Fiber Contour brush, I’ve been using to apply heavily pigmented blushes when I want to avoid clown cheeks.

3) The smallest one, the Duo-Fiber Eye brush, works well for lightly blending shadows in the crease, or for a applying highlighter. I like a small brush for highlighter.

I probably wouldn’t have bought this set if not for the fact that I got the Duo-Fiber Face brush in the limited edition Nic’s Picks set. On a whim, I tried the brush and thought, hey, I don’t hate this!

The realTechniques Duo-Fiber Collection is duo-fiber done right!

 

Review: EcoTools Fresh & Flawless Five Piece Complexion Set

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Has anyone else noticed that EcoTools has given their brushes a bit of a face lift in the last little while? I’ve been a devoted EcoTools fan for many years, and when I first jumped on the bandwagon, the brushes looked like this:

vegan-makeup-brushes-ecotools

Aesthetically, the brushes and their packaging had an earth-friendly vibe with their bamboo handles, cruelty-free taklon bristles and plain cloth carrying cases.

Now, the brushes look more like this:

1289-ecotools-touch-up-set-out.jpg_1And I approve! With one simple change, EcoTools has upped the chicness factor without compromising their earth-friendly image. I think the bronze-toned ferrules are far more attractive than the silver. Also, they now come in carrying cases with pretty designs on them.

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