Clearly, I am one when it comes to makeup. Since you're probably not surprised that I'm going a bit back on my word about some things, I'll just get right to it:

I'm no longer in possession of Laura Mercier lipsticks in Fresh Brown and Amaretto, or ck Calvin Klein's Glory lip gloss. After some soul-searching, bathroom cleaning, and others' input, I made myself return these. Since my lip color choices are usually neutral and safe, there was just no justification for the space these were occupying. Fresh Brown was replaced by Maybelline's Moisture Extreme Lipstick in Sugared Bronze, and I'm just as happy with it. I kept the ck Calvin Klein Pastel Gold lip gloss because it is a color and type I just don't have. My only other "good" gloss right now is a reddish bronze from MAC, and this is a good complement for a balanced and reliable, if tiny, selection. I'll splurge on a good lipstick for an awesome, hard-to-find color, not a neutral.

There is a Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer sitting in my bathroom counter, and so far, so good! It makes my face look more even and polished without feeling like makeup. As a moisturizer it leaves a soft glow, and is only slightly drying in already existing problem areas. Completely worth the money in most ways, but I have a nagging feeling that I can find something similar and less expensive. Suggestions are welcome.

There is also a beautiful Nars Bronzer/Blush duo (Orgasm/Laguna)alongside the tinted moisturizer, and it makes me so happy just to look at it. It is one of my more substantial buys yet, and I'm proud of it. This duo gives just the right amount color to my face, and with a little work I think I might get the contouring down, too. It's a foolproof addition to anyone's makeup routine, and while I'm still going to give it some time just to be sure, this one will probably be a keeper.

I have similar feelings about Smashbox eye shadow Trio in Smashbox.com. This trio consists of some basic neutrals - a pale but brightening yellow, a soft shell-pink, and a dark, matte brown. The quality of these shadows is wonderful (extremely soft and blendable), and any issues I'm having are more about technique than the product itself. I particularly love the yellow for the inner corner of the eye and on the brow. But my It's-so-basic-there-must-be-a-cheaper-version-out-there moment did force me to peruse the drugstore aisle to no avail. I might just stick with this one to make life easier.

All of these have been much less tricky to use than some of the other supposedly fantabulous things I have bought, and are much more effective - who could ask for more?


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