Beauty Favorites

My Favorite Beauty Products of 2018

Ahhh… another year come and gone. 2018 was awesome and I learned a lot about myself makeup wise. For example, don’t buy into the hype and be true to your aesthetic.

I love color and I love pinning those really beautiful rainbow eye looks on Pinterest, but when push comes to shove, I am more of a neutral girl. It works for me and my skill level and you know what? That’s ok.

With that being said, my favorite beauty products of 2018 all have a very common theme and I have featured them in my blog a million times before, but that’s because I really love them and I probably knew from the moment I applied them that I was going to love them because they just made me feel so beautiful. And isn’t that what matters?

The most important thing about makeup is not what everyone else buys or wears, but what you like and what makes you feel the prettiest when wearing it and no other palette made me feel so pretty when I wear it than Dream St. from Colourpop x Kathleen Lights.

I am big lover of metal shades, like gold and bronze, and also earthy colors, like browns and peaches. They compliment my green eyes and I know that Kathleen Lights, who also has green eyes, featured them in this palette for that very same reason. She literally said it was her dream palette and I can see why. It’s the perfect palette, in my opinion at least.

This year, I made a conscious effort to buy from brands that weren’t exactly mainstream, at least not yet. I wanted to support smaller brands because I love me a good David and Goliath story. This year, I have to give it to Antonym Cosmetics. Based in my very own hometown, they are the full trifecta: organic, cruelty free and beautiful.

From it’s sleek bamboo packaging to the glamorous, shimmery finish, my favorite blush this year was their Baked Blush in Peach. It melts so nicely into your skin, compliments my intrusive freckles and leaves my cheeks with just a small sliver of shimmer. Perfection!

Speaking of shimmer, I have to give props to my favorite highlighter of 2018. I love a good dupe and when I got the Ittse Illuminator in Barbados, my first thought was that it was an doppelgänger for The Balm’s Mary-Lou Manizer. However, the more that I wore it, the more I realized that although there were similarities, there were differences as well and it was those differences that made this highlighter a stand out.

For one, the formula is much more creamier and melts a bit more into your skin than Mary Lou. I like that because it gives me that lit from within glow that I prefer. Also, it’s just a tad bit more icier, as Mary Lou has a slightly more peachy undertone.

Both are beautiful, but I would go for Barbados because quality it’s the same, but it’s also cheaper at $10. Score!!

When I was thinking of lipsticks, I realized that it wasn’t just one lipstick or shade that I reached for the most this year, but rather a specific line. This year, I discovered Colourpops Ultra Satin Liquid Lip. Yeah, I know, I am late to the game (as always), but in my defense, I was never a fan of liquid lips, until I met this one.

The Ultra Satins are both long wear and comfortable and you know Colourpop has like a million different shades to choose from. My favorites this year were Aquarius and Dreamy, which is not featured because I couldn’t find it when I was choosing colors, but I did find a runner up in Rever, which sadly is not for sale anymore on their site. I can thank Kathleen Lights for making me a believer in this formula.

Last but not least…. lashes! I don’t wear falsies, which is why I have very specific demands from a mascara. I need my mascara to give me length and volume, but I don’t want clumps. I use to be a big fan of the Marcelle Xtension Plus, but after getting a full size tube of the Butter London Double Decker Lashes Mascara in a Boxycharm, I was converted.

This mascara leaves my lashes full and feathery, without a clump in site. Also, the brush is thick and full of bristles, so it deposits just the right amount of product. Sadly, I had to throw away my last tube of it before I wrote this post, as it was way past it’s expiration, so I was unable to take a picture of it, but check it out in the Butter London site. It’s the best!!

Let me know in the comments below what your favorite products of 2018 were. Maybe your old favorite, will become my 2019 favorite.

Till next time, my friends!



Ittse – Ready Rouge Creme Cheek Color – Review Time

I think blush is one of the most underrated beauty products out there. Most of the time, eyeshadows and lipsticks take all the glory, but I see very few people talk about the hardworking blush.

Well, I’m going to change that today because I managed to get my hands on the latest release from Ittse of their Ready Rouge Creme Cheek Colors and it’s going to get cheeky in here!

Well, I did get one contour in the set, so not all are blushes, but they are are truly beautiful. I also did end up giving some of the pans to my friends to try out, so I couldn’t swatch them all for you, but I believe them to be the same in quality (other wise, I would not have given them away 😉).

Creamy to the touch, when you swirl your finger in the pan, you are kind of taken aback by how smooth it is because I expected something waxier as my experience with previous cream blushes always had me struggle a bit to get product out.

Not the case with these shades. I was easily able to get enough product from just one swirl to dot both cheeks and blend it in, which is nice because when you first put it on, you are like “Yowza! That’s pigmented!”.

Personally, I love a pigmented lipstick or shadow, but I kind of want a soft, natural blush. That’s ok, because they actually blend out really nice. You can use a brush or even a beauty sponge to work the product in, but I used my fingers and it was fine.

Ready Rouge Creme Blush in Coquette

The finishing effect is this soft natural flush of color, which is perfect for an everyday look.

I thought it would be nice to see if I can wear the shade Coquette as a lipstick as well, since I like the look of my cheeks and lips matching, but I believe that it requires a bit more wax to give it the lasting power we see in a cream lipstick.

If you want to pick up one the Ready Rouge Creme Cheek Colors to try for yourself, you can do so by heading over to the Ittse website. The pans will run you $10 each or you can pick up a quad for $38.

If you want to save 20% on your order, feel free to use my code BEAUTYSWATCHER. Keep in mind that I do make a slight commission if you buy any products.

Anyone else want to give their most favorite hardworking blush a shout-out? If so, do so in the comments below.

Till next time, my friends!



Ittse Fell Street Collection – Review Time!

Before I had kids and became, you know an adult, I loved to travel. Not that I don’t do that now, but it’s different when you have kids. With little ones, it’s hard to get them to appreciate the history of a city, when all they care about is if there is  gift shop somewhere. However, even though I don’t travel as much as I used to, I love it when a designer or brand curates something around a location, even if I haven’t ever been there, because it makes me wonder why they chose that style or color story.

So is the case with Ittse’s Fell Street collection, which is a sensuous and warm collection filled with earthy browns, reds and dark mauves. I imagine that there must be something special about this street or district for it to deserve a full collection because by taking a quick peek at their website, they seem to have dedicated mostly eyeshadow quads to other famous San Francisco sites. So of course, I began googling Fell Street to see what the hubbub was all about and was rewarded with beautiful pictures of colorful Victorian houses, brick buildings and view of Panhandle Park.

I have to admit, I don’t see the correlation between the rich fiery colors of the collection and any pictures I pulled up on Google, but some things should be left to interpretation. Maybe it’s one of those you have to be there to experience it kind of thing.

Conceptualization aside, the Fell Street collection does not disappoint. These colors are literally me in a nutshell. I love the combinations of smoky browns and rich burgundy colors because neither shade overpowers each other. They seem to work perfectly together no matter how light or deep you go. Consisting of 3 mattes and 3 shimmer eye shadows, 1 cheek color, 1 illuminator and 2 lip cremes, the colors are:

  • Grace – a pinky bone color.
  • Istanbul – a coppery/rose gold shimmer.
  • French Pressed –  muted cool toned brown
  • Russian Hill – a STUNNING shimmery gold toned red.
  • Para – a shimmery burgundy
  • Caviar – matte black
  • Paris Pink – warm matte pink cheek color
  • Riviera – GORGEOUS shimmery pink highlighter
  • Birthday Suit – creamy cool toned mauve lip color
  • Cassis – creamy berry lip color

Performance wise all the colors stood the test of a full day of work. I did have to reapply the lip colors, but I don’t think that is unusual for a cream lipstick. I do have to admit that carrying around a lip brush was a pain in the butt, but I would just swab with my finger and dab for a blotted look. I liked it.

I do have to warn you all that Caviar has to be the blackest black eye shadow I have EVER seen. You all know how much dark colors intimidate me because any look can easily go wrong with just one too many dips in the color. However, I used a flat liner brush and used this to lightly smoke out my undereye and line the lid and it worked just as well.

Another two-for-one is Riviera. Although I initially thought it would be too dark as a highlighter, it seemed to work out fine for my pale skin. It also works beautifully as a shimmery eyeshadow and helps to introduce some lighter looks when using this collection.

If I had one complaint about this collection is that it runs you $99. However, Ittse does offer a payment plan to help with the initial sticker shock of 4 payments of $24.75 each. Also,  I am affiliated with Ittse AND if you use my code, BEAUTYSWATCHER, at checkout you will get 20% off your entire purchase. Keep in mind that I do make a slight commission if you use my code.

Anyone from San Francisco want to help me figure out the correlation between the color story and Fell Street? I think it will keep me up at night if someone doesn’t explain it to me.

Till next time, my friends!


***products above were gifted to me, but all thoughts are my own***


Ittse Glambition Quad – Review Time!

If you are a long time reader/friend of my blog, you may already know that I can be kind of a Hot Mess. Not on purpose, of course. As a working mom, I’m just kind of pulled in a million directions at all times and my day can consist of work meetings, after school activities, homework and housework. When your day is split up like that, I don’t have the time or desire to do a full face of complicated makeup.

Now when I say I don’t want any complications, it doesn’t mean that I want something uninspiring or boring, but easy. I don’t want to take out 72 products just to look put together.

Ain’t nobody got time for that!

So when I saw that Itsse was having a sale on their quad collab with Love for Laquer, I knew that I was going to pick that up and see if I can switch from “Hot Mess” to “Hot-Ness”.

See what I did there?? 😉

The Glambition Collection is really up my alley for multiple reasons:

  • The golden pinky color spectrum is so easy to work with. Perfect for a natural look, with just right amount of shimmer and glam to give it that “I’m Naturally Glowy” look.
  • They are buttery to the touch and are really blendable. The shimmery shades can be foiled for that metallic kick or patted on with your finger and the matte blends BEAUTIFULLY with a fluffy brush. There is a bit of kick up when you dip your brush into the product, but nothing major, in my opinion.
  • They are multifunctional colors. The pinky peach matte cheek color in #GIRLBOSS is actually a fantastic transition or crease shade.
  • Same goes for Run the World  (pinky shimmer) and Hustle & Glow (yellow gold shimmer) illuminators. They can be used on the lids, inner corners, under the brow bone and on the cheekbones. However, I will say that they are a bit glittery, so if you don’t like a chunky highlighter, I would avoid putting them on the cheeks or go in with a light hand.
  • Goal Digger, a beautiful rose gold shimmer, deserves it’s own bullet point. I LOVE this color.  It’s not an overpowering pink or chunky in any way and if you want an easy look, just pat it on your lid with a bit of #GIRLBOSS on the crease. If you want to take it up a notch, get a dark brown shade and build up that outer V and add a winged liner. Perfection!

The last point is the only real downside I find to this collection. I need to add a little depth to my crease and outer V and usually go into a chocolatey brown. Is that a real problem? No. These are singles, so when I was curating a palette around these colors, I picked out a nice brown from another palette and added it to this one. You can also dip into your contour or bronzer in a pinch.


I am affiliated with Ittse, so if you want to shop the Glambition collection, feel free to use my link here. Keep in mind, that if you do decide to make a purchase using my link, I will get a slight commission.

Any of you have you have any specific looks using this collection? If so, leave it in the comments below. You all know I need all the help I can get.

Till next time, my friends!



Ittse Marcel Starter Kit – Review Time!

I’ve literally been singing Beyoncé’s “All the Single Ladies” ever since I decided to sit down and write this post. Don’t worry, me and the Hubs are doing A-OK, but every time I play around with my eyeshadow singles, it’s like this song automatically queues up in my brain.

Not that it’s a problem at all. I love that song! I just find it funny, that’s all.

Anyways, as you all know, I have been loving me some singles lately. I love mixing and matching shades from various brands and creating the perfect palette based on my mood. The best part about creating your own palette is the ability to play with any color of your choice and not being limited to a brands perception of the perfect Sunset or Tropical Palette (ahem, Natasha Denona … you know I’m talking about you, right?)

However, even I have to admit that every palette needs some basics. Colors that are perfect to deepen the crease, create a glowy highlight or make your cheeks rosy at the drop of a dime. Recently, I received the Marcel Starter Kit from Ittse is filled with a glorious bundle of shades that can be the foundation for anyone who wants to start building their own singles collection.

If you haven’t heard about Ittse, let me fill you in:

  • They are based in San Francisco, California and manufacture all their products right in the Bay Area.
  • All their products are cruelty-free, paraben-free, gluten-free and soon to be talc-free.
  • Although not completely vegan, they do carry vegan products and if click here, you will see that it’s quite extensive.
  • Everything is magnetic and all their packaging is 100% Recyclable.
  • They have you pretty much covered from your brows to you lips and everything in between. Except for mascara. Ittse, can we work on that? You all know I love me my mascara.

There are two pre-made Starter Kits ($49) to choose from, The Marcel, a warm neutral palette of pinks, golds and a brown or The Riley, a cooler palette, also with pinks and golds, but includes a grey and black for that dark smoky look. All of them include a cheek color, illuminator and 3 eyeshadow singles to create a simple look. Rounding off your kit, is a travel palette to store your singles, while leaving you enough room to grow your collection and add more color if you so choose.

If none of these pre-made kits is your thing, you can also Create Your Own Palette and choose from a variety of colors to assemble your perfect starter kit. I know that $49 is a bit steep, but I just found out they have a payment plan, where for 4 payment of $12.25, you can have your kit mailed to you as well. Pretty neat!

As I mentioned, I received the Marcel Starter kit and for a girl who is definitely way more comfortable playing with warm shades that darker ones, this is a good start. I got:

  • Illuminator in Barbados – my FAVORITE of them all. It’s this glowy, golden shade that melts right into my cheekbones. It’s not in your face shine, but it still looks like the sun has decided to somehow set on my face.
  • Cheek color in Bliss – a pearly pink, which I also have used on my eyes too because… Why not?
  • Eyeshadow in Brut – a shimmery champagne color. Not too yellow, not exactly gold, but a perfect in between.
  • Tan Lines – a shimmery pinky brown shade. Pat Tan Lines all over the lid and deepen the crease with a bit of Suede Booties and your are out the door. Love it!
  • Eyeshadow in Suede Booties – what a cute name, right? This is a slightly muted matte brown, with a tinge of orange. I’m sure it would also make a lovely bronzer, except that the pan is a little small to get enough product on a fluffy face brush, but on the eyes it’s perfect for an easy natural day look. Also a perfect crease shade.

I found all the colors to be pigmented and long lasting. If I had one critique, it’s that unless you add additional colors, this collection can get quite boring. Ittse sells a large array of colors to fit all your needs, but at $9-$10/pan it’s on the more expensive side. However, be patient and wait for one of their 20% of sales and you can score them for less and you might even get free shipping.

If you want to buy any of the Starter Kits or Create Your Own, feel free to shop with me using my affiliate link by clicking here. Please remember, that if you decide to purchase something using my link, I will receive a slight commission. 🙂

Any of you tried Ittse before? If so, let me know your favorite products in the comments below. I love recommendations!

Till next time, my friends!


PS- I received the Marcel Starter Kit from Ittse via PR, however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.