Shopping Stories + First Impressions: Highlighter, Lipsticks, and Brushes

I don’t like writing haul posts. Why would I write one when I skip reading them on my feed? I do read through a few, when there are swatches and brief first impression reviews. Otherwise, I don’t bother.

But for accountability purposes, here I am. I don’t feel good writing this. It’s very Hi, I’m Rae and I’m a shopaholic. Maybe if I bring it to the surface, I will wake up.

I relatively shop less now, I believe, but that’s not the point. I could do better.

Sorry that this post isn’t in the giddy tone that haul posts usually sound. This is intended to bring me back to earth.

Let’s proceed.

Kevyn Aucoin Celestial Powder in Candlelight

The proceeds from selling my Hourglass Ambient Lighting palette went to this little thing. If you ask me, that’s a very mature thing to do. Not the shopping part, of course. I was talking about disposing one of my stuff before getting another one.

Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight

It turns out, this was a great purchase. It’s everything I’ve been looking for in a highlighter. Its effect doesn’t come from placebo or from the need to see that there’s an effect because it’s expensive and it must work. I feel that with Hourglass sometimes. With KA Candlelight, I see an obvious subtle sheen. I know, confusing. But it’s sheen! It’s not glitter, glimmer, shimmer or shine. It is SHEEN.

Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight Swatch

This was worth the guilt.

2 MAC Matte Lipsticks – Lady Danger and Taupe

I felt defeated with my recent foray into orange lipsticks. The feedback was favorable, but I don’t know. Those Wet ‘n Wild lipsticks were weird. They don’t apply evenly compared to the ones I owned before. I also realized that I’m not the type to make things work. So, I turned to MAC. Their matte lipstick formulation is usually consistent across all colors. Since Wet ‘n Wild Purty Persimmon looked ok on me, I decided to pick out Lady Danger which is a similar color. Tina and Donna’s recommendation also played a huge role in my decision too — not that I’m blaming you girls.

Lady Danger and Taupe

Top: Lady Danger | Bottom: Taupe

Buying Taupe was a different story. I needed a lipstick for when I want to wear colorful eyeshadows or clothes. I used to have another brown, Velvet Teddy, but it was too pale on me.

I first tried Taupe when V lent me her tube. It looked scary brown. I thought it will make me look older. But it looked awesome. Donna, who is almost the same skin color as me, also gave her thumbs up so I bought one. I consider it one of the more practical lipsticks in my collection.

Sigma Makeup Brushes – Small Tapered Blending Brush and Pencil Brush

Now I realize that brushes do make a difference in eyeshadow application. These and the other brushes I bought from Suesh made me want to apply eyeshadows. Of all makeup products, I probably enjoy eye makeup the least. Well, not anymore. Is that strange? I find it strange.

Sigma Brushes

Tapered brushes are awesome! The Sigma brushes I have are probably not the best eye brushes in the world. Some hairs can feel a bit pokey and scratchy. A few hairs already shed. They also fluffed up after washing (this is how E45 looks like new). Luckily, I bought brush guards (the non-rip off ones).

Maybe I got duds? The Suesh brushes are better.

Sigma Brushes 2

Since I’m just starting with eye makeup, these brushes and my fingers are enough for now. But I see myself exploring Hakuhodo and Rae Morris brushes in the future — when I’ve already developed the eye makeup application habit. By then, they’ll be worth it.

 * * *

I want to say “that is all”. Unfortunately, that’s not true. I decided to split this up into hopefully just two posts so it wouldn’t take too much from me. This is like Scatterbraintures Confessional, guys. This eats up energy. See you in the next.

39 comments

  1. I liked my HG palette, but I like that Kevin Aucoin highlighter. I enjoy going to sephora.com because I don’t usually like the stuff there, but when I go to nordstrom.com, the dilemma begins. >.<

    1. Likewise! Pero I sort of promised that I won’t buy anything again that will take weeks to ship here. I tend to forget my purchases :(

      So, no nordstrom for me anymore. Anyway, I think you will love Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight. Hindi ko lang masyado nagagamit lately kasi pawis at langis ang highlighter ko ngayon :D

  2. Weee, Lady Danger! :D I love that shade! Now I’m contemplating if I should get the HG palette pa. I also read good reviews about Becca’s Highlighters. Hay!

    1. Yup, think hard :D Sulit din naman si hourglass if you end up liking it. You have a finishing powder and a highlighter na din. I’m not into finishing powders so maybe that’s why I didn’t like it.

  3. I feel extra special because you read (at least I hope you did) and commented on my haul post. Bahaha! And Taupe, finally!!!!!!! I feel so proud of you, woman! <3 And why do you like Suesh brushes better. I somehow feel betrayed. Baka may mali sa mga nabili kong Suesh brushes :(

    1. I thought the Sigma brush just “feels” scratchy. But it actually scratched my skin. When I wiped a makeup remover after experimenting on eye makeup, ang hapdi! The other eye, where I used just my fingers, didn’t feel that way. The suesh brushes that I own are not synthetic. Maybe that’s why.

  4. It’s weird how one enjoys reading a piece that you didn’t really have fun writing… i feel like a leech! Haha! I’m probably switchin to Suesh eye brushes, thanks to your posts. Haul posts are evil in many ways.

    PS. Everything is so new in here, I like it! :)

    1. Meron din ako nun ata. Pero di ko chineck, panget yung nakuha ko, kulang sa bristles hahaha. Yeah, ikaw ultimate enabler ko, I think.

  5. Rae, I feel like a complete novice now. I usually buy stuff based on how the product looks and feels on me. in the past I had a difficult time applying eyeshadow mainly because my eyelids are uber oily and they melt and transfer to my lower lips making me look racoonish. I also love the Suesh Brushes! they were the first one I own, other than the REAL Techniques I find other brushes even expensive one so so. I really do need to write about the Drugstore brands soon, since Elaine has tagged me and everyone else. Now I need to shop. Nainggit!

  6. EHEM. Cheader cheader :P But nooo good job on the Kevyn Aucoin. As for the brushes, I use mac and have teensy eyes but have no problem with them naman (depends on which ones you get, I guess?) Watercolor brushes are a good hack, FYI :P

      1. Cliche pero MAC 217, womp womp. I think you already mentioned not liking it, soooo… I also like the 218. As for watercolor brushes, yung sa National lang. I got a set from the “pro” painting cabinet pero it was less than Php 500 for about 7 brushes na. They have super soft bristles and are smaller than eyeshadow brushes so that could solve your problem. I got it for art class but I took one for myself and okay nga talaga! IDK if it can work for packing, I mostly use it for blending. Found out about it from an old, old Youtube tutorial.

  7. sana pinagisa mo na lng na post.. para pag nakita mong marami.. mas masakit sa loob, di mo na ulitin? me sense ba? hahahaha.

  8. I have the Sigma Basic Eyes Kit they’re okay naman. I wonder why the brushes you got feel a pokey and scratchy?

    Forever in love with KA The Celestial Powder <3

    1. I was wondering the same thing. I rarely hear that with sigma. And hindi ako maarte sa brushes. When I was using the pencil brush, feeling ko kinakamot lo yung mata ko, haha. It shed some hairs din. Pero gagamitin ko pa din to.

  9. I heard that MAC brushes are good, and some of the Real Techniques ones for the eyes. I personally haven’t tried either of those. I do have Artist Studio brushes and some Charm brushes. I like both of those brands for my eye brushes.

  10. Maybe I’m really just not into makeup but I don’t really see the use of a proper highlighter. Dunno, probably because I have oily skin so I can’t appreciate stuff like that? Uhm.

    1. I’m also wondering why I like highlighters. My face is oily, haha. But, I don’t know, it really looks different. I don’t like super matte skin. Sometimes when I powder my face, it gets too matte and flat. I use this to bring back sheen at the right places

      1. Yeah, I don’t like the matte and flat look either. But so far the few times I used BB creams or powders I just apply a very thin layer to get somewhat dewy finish. Sometimes I miss wearing (even a little) makeup, but then I go out of the office and feel the blasted heat and think, NO. Lol.

        1. True, lately I have not been wearing makeup except for matte lipsticks. So I don’t know why I keep buying. It doesn’t make sense.

      2. I hardly even wear lipstick either so I look like a zombie most of the time. Imagine, my skintone’s darker by a shade or three than my normal and then I have pale lips. And no camouflage (makeup) whatsoever. I really must have no vanity in my body at all these days. Lol. Oh, but I do shape and fill in my eyebrows if that counts. ;)

        Truly, you had me fooled about your type. Haha.

        1. I don’t know why I seem ISTJ or something else that’s remotely my type. I type in whatever comes out of my mind and if I have time, I edit usually just the grammar and spelling stuff. Maybe writing Audit Reports changed me. :P

      3. It’s the overall style, you know? Like your layout: stark black-and-white, no-frills, so-not-girly. And for someone who writes a lot about makeup, you have a somewhat clinical approach to things, unlike others who tend to gush and blather about products and how they feel about them. You write facts and write in statements as opposed to simple sentences, get my drift? Sorry if I’m not making a lot of sense, just kinda hard to explain. Haha.

        1. Haha, I’m moving to a new house and trying to design it, my future house also looks like my blog — bare and black, white and beige! :P

          Oh, I know why! I was a tomboy growing up. And I really really like science and outer space. I thought I wanted to be a doctor so I read medical stuff when I was in HS. Then, I thought I wanted to be a cosmetic chemist. To be honest, I enjoy writing about makeup more than makeup itself. I just need a hobby.

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