What’s In My Bag?

A Closer Look at Some of My Longtime Favorites

9 Tried and True Products That Won’t Let You Down

As a woman who’s flaws include perpetual lateness, and the undying ability to convince myself that I should always be purchasing a lot of elfin purses (you know, the bags that have the potential to hold 1/3 of your MasterCard, and maybe a stick of gum). The point is, if I’m being totally honest, this is more of a “What’s piled into the glove compartment of my car, and also eternally rotating in and out of my many, many tiny-sized bags?” Unfortunately, that seemed to be a fairly atrocious, not to mention lengthy title, so I went with something less complicated. After all, the point has much less to do with where one might locate these items, but why I love these items enough to lug them around, despite their inability to fit into my seemingly barbie sized  bags.

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So first off, this AFY Sixfold Concentrated Aloe Vera Gel is inexpensive, contains minimal ingredients, and does absolutely everything it says it will. The gel is marketed for acne removal, as well as dry skin relief, and it contains absolutely nothing but Aloe, Witch Hazel and Hyaluronic Acid. My results were very quick after my first use, so now I wear it nearly every day, and apply it just before my regular facial moisturizer. Dry skin due to weather change was my biggest concern when I was considering using this gel, and thanks to this little discovery, I truly believe that red, chapped cheeks are a thing of my past. I generally order a few at a time from Newchic, where the product usually fluctuates anywhere between $3-$7, depending on the site’s sales, so if you have any desire to try it, but the price is up, I absolutely recommend checking back later, because the price changes frequently, and it will go back down, so don’t lose hope!

Kat Von D Tattoo Liner has also been my best friend since my first use.♥ The eyeliner was recommended to me by a friend after she wore it to the gym by accident. After working out for two hours, she caught her reflection in a set of mirrors, and realized she’d forgotten to remove her makeup prior to working out. She relayed that upon further inspection, her eyeliner had not faded, smeared or given her that subtle racoon look we all know and love. To me, this was simply unheard of. I’d been doing makeup for years, and regardless of application technique, most every liquid liner (particularly with the sort of saturated brush Kat Von D’s Tattoo Liner is equipped with) requires regular reapplications when strenuous activity is brought into the mix. My friend’s convincing recommendation took place nearly two years ago, and I’ve been using it for everything but waterlines ever since.

The SEPHORA COLLECTION Teint Infusion Ethereal Natural Finish Foundation has the BEST consistency in the world- not too thick, but not so thin that I convince myself it’s 97% water. Let’s be real, there’s nothing comfortable about the idea of dabbing skin colored semifluid matter onto your face, so when choosing a liquid foundation, you want to ensure that it doesn’t actually feel as bad as the idea sounds. Bear in mind, the bottle does require a good shake before each use to achieve that perfect texture, but that should be the most strenuous part of the application process. I always apply the foundation using the SEPHORA COLLECTION The Perfectionist: Airbrush Sponge (Do not judge me). I did the whole “I do not require a $20 sponge to blend my beauty” thing for an entire year before someone sent me an original Beauty Blender, and I, like so many others, was won over by that small pink sponge, and eventually, it’s even smaller green counterparts. I always approach dupe products with caution, particularly if I know good and well that I love the original, but I also really love most everything I’ve tried from the SEPHORA COLLECTION, and I liked that the shape of SEPHORA’s sponge would allow me to use one sponge for both foundation and concealer, rather than purchasing 3 Beauty Blenders (1 original, 2 concealing) at a time for $40, I get 1 Airbrush Sponge for $12. So after reading close to a million comparison reviews that sounded positive, I decided to go for it, and I loved it. The result is no different than the result I get from that of a Beauty Blender, and it’s costing me less money.

the POREfessional face primer by Benefit Cosmetics is incomparable when it comes to primer, easily surpassing every other brand I’ve encountered thus far. I keep a travel size on me at all times, and a full size tube at home. This primer covers blemishes and fine lines like you would not believe, and paired with a light concealer is absolute gold. I try to keep my skin extremely healthy and free of such undesirable occurrences, but I am human and things do happen on occasion. An unsightly blackhead or blemish making an appearance in the midst of an already hectic day can make stress levels sky rocket, but knowing I have this awesome product in my corner alleviates those added anxieties.

I am not ashamed to say that my Mary Jo K | Lip Kit is probably one of the most gorgeous things I own. I know there has been some controversy regarding Kylie Cosmetics and their customer service as of late, and perhaps I’ve just been very fortunate in my personal ordering experiences, but I, myself, have never had an issue. I currently have 7 of these lip kits (in varying colors, of course, I’m not a total sociopath) and Mary Jo K is my absolute favorite, the color is just so classic and pretty. Each kit’s lipstick has had the same basic consistency that has lived up to it’s reputation of being extra long wear (I know this because I once fell asleep in Mary Jo K, and woke up looking vaguely vampire-esque).

MOROCCANOIL Hydrating Styling Cream gives my continuously bleached and just generally damage prone hair the perfect amount of hydration even on it’s worst days. Many hydrating/healing solutions leave my hair feeling oily or make no difference whatsoever. This styling cream gives my hair perfect balance, while creating the most gorgeous shine, and it can be applied to damp or dry hair, which is extremely convenient if you’re switching up your beauty routine semi frequently.

As I’ve mentioned many times before, I have what can only be described as, the most inherently dry skin in the entire world, so, for me, keeping hand lotion around isn’t optional, it is a necessity. My favorite is this Super Hydrating Indian Coconut Nectar Hand Cream by Pacifica. While this product has an almost comically long and very descriptive name, it lives up to the exceptions such a name might create. I really love Pacifica products, I have always seen great results from them, and their line is 100% vegan and cruelty free

The last on my list is INSTAIN® Long-Wearing Powder Staining Blush in Argyle, which is described on it’s website as a petal pink color. I’ve also tried their cheek stain in Lace (bright pink) and Houndstooth (mauve) but Argyle seems to look the best with my everyday look. It’s less harsh than the others and a swipe over my cheekbones seems to wake my entire face up in the morning. I used to prefer cream blushes (due to my aforementioned dry skin) but this blush stays in place all day, and never looks caked on or powdery on my face, so even if you’re an avid cream/liquid blush user, definitely give this product a chance.

Let me know your thoughts, and if there is anything you think I should add to my everyday essentials. Mad love to you all, and a very happy Tuesday! ❤

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