First Impression and Face of the Day: Catrice Even Skin Foundation 005 Even Ivory

My most anticipated addition to the Catrice range was definitely the Even Skin foundation especially after they promised that it would include an extremely light shade and after stalking several drugstores in my area here we are.

The foundation promises:

-to be longlasting and caring

– instant reduction of redness and dark spots (medium to full coverage)

– more even skin tone within 8 weeks of daily usage

-luminous matte finish

-SPF 25

It comes in a frosted glass bottle with a pump, very straight up, very basic, no frills, no fuzz. The bottle contains the standard 30ml/ 1.01 fl.oz. and costs €7.45.

As per usual you can enlarge all pics by clicking on them.

Let’s have a look how it applied on my skin:

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Here you see my naked face, cleansed and prepared with my Nivea day cream for dry and sensitive skin. My skin is coming back from a nasty spell dehydration, black heads and bumps. I finally switched back to the Neutrogena Anti Black Head Daily Scrub and within two days of using it the bumps have been visibly reduced and the inflammations have gone down what you see here is mainly scarring.

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The foundation is really creamy and looks quite yellow against my skin when it comes out of the bottle.

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In this picture I applied the foundation on the right side of my face with my Rossmann flat top buffing brush.

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And here is the left side applied with the Essential Foundation brush by Real Techniques. The foundation works with both, if anything the coverage is sheerer with the Essential Foundation brush. The foundation goes on very smooth and creamy and a little goes a long way. It is lightly scented but the scent is not noticeable once the foundation is applied.

I know Magi of magi-mania.de said for her this is too light a coverage to warrant the label ‘medium’ but if you look at the following pictures especially you can see that the redness has been blurred over and other blemishes have been covered up, to me this is medium coverage. The foundation is buildable, so you may actually get this to full coverage if you like.

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This is the foundation after about 10 minutes. It settled slightly in the lines under my eyes but once that was blended out it was fine. Within those 10 minutes the foundation did not noticeable oxidize. The finish of the foundation is semi matte and has somewhat of a soft healthy glow.

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Here you can see my face powdered and contoured and the brows filled in.

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Aaand here is the final result and here

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you can see my jaw line better. You can see that the redness has been taken down quite a bit but it is still shining through. I personally like it that way. I did not use any concealers on my face. Neither under my eyes nor anywhere on my skin, this is all the foundation.

On my dry skin the foundation works a treat. It feels creamy and moisturizing, I can feel it on my skin a little bit but it is not crazy heavy.
I’ve been wearing it for about two hours now and despite the oily residue from my moisturizer the foundation hasn’t creased or crawled in any lines and pores and even my oily(er) nose is still matte.

So far the foundation gets a BIG thumbs up from me, of course I’ll have to see how it goes over time but at this point it is holy grail material.

Lastly let’s have a look how it compares to other light foundations:

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from left: Catrice Even Skin 005, MAC SFF NW10, L’Oréal True Match N1, Manhattan Endless Perfection 56 Light Porcelain, Astor Perfect Stay 091

It is the lightest of the bunch, even lighter than my MAC SFF NW 10

And here it is swatched next to the foundations that are readily available in German drugstores

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bottom to top: Catrice Even Skin, Manhattan Endless Perfection, Astor Perfect Stay

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and the three foundations blended out

You can see in the swatches that the Catrice foundation looks almost scarily yellow but it doesn’t look like that on my skin. Astor and Manhattan look more pink. I think the yellow in the Catrice foundation helps to cancel out the red.

There is no swatch of my beloved Max Factor Facefinity All Day Flawless it is for the simple reason that I am out, and I haven’t gotten the chance to pick up a new bottle. From memory I can tell you that it is more neutral than Astor and Manhattan and colorwise sits closer to the new Catrice foundation.

I hope this help some of you with the decision whether to pick up the new Catrice foundation or not. It is very light, quite possibly the lightest on the market.

My Favorite Summer Nude

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Nail swatch of Crew First! also absolutely LOVE the bottle design!

Part of my Project100 was to teach me to only buy things that I really need and would wear more than once and so far I am doing really well. One addition to my nail stash (which still needs to be broken down further – I’m still far away from my goal of 50 bottles period) is Crew First! from the essence nauti girl limited edition. I absolutely loved the idea of the collection with it’s nautical inspiration and mixture of crisp white blue and red.

Crew First! is a very light salmony pastell color. Not quite as light and airy as essie fiji or find me an oasis, but close enough that I can pull it off. The color is a few shades lighter than my skintone so to me it is the perfect nude. To me it makes my hands look really clean and put together. One of those colors that you can chuck on and it is going to be appropriate for any event that is coming your way that week.

The polish goes on a bit streaky but it was okay for me in two coats, but I would let the first coat dry a little bit before the second to avoid bald spots. Three coats would probably make it completely perfect.

It lasts 3-4 days on me until it starts to chip, which is solid especially when you take into account that I work with my hands a lot.

In the picture you can see 1 coat of OPI Nail Envy, 2 coats of essence nauti girl Crew First! and 1 coat of Seche Vite.

The polish is limited edition but the trays just arrived in my hometown so I think you’ll be able to still get it if you like. I bought this polish with my own money.

Btw: Crew First! is ever so slightly lighter and less brown than essie spin the bottle. Close enough for a dupe? You decide!

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Crew First! vs. essie spin the bottle

The Sunday Riley Experiment – Drugstore Version

When I watched the Tuesday Talk the Pixiwoos did with Sunday Riley, something she said struck a cord with me: She said that when your skin feels tight and drawn after cleansing, under the microscope you can basically see the skin crack up like earth in the desert. And then those little cracks are actually the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Yikes, I know.

As I am getting older my skin has made a stunning transformation. I went from a VERY oily t-zone, to extremely dehydrated cheek-area and a normal to very slightly oily t-zone. It took me a while to understand what my skin needed and to react properly to it. As my skin is dehydrated oils don’t really work. Despite using a serum with hyaluronic acid underneath my alverde facial oil essentially just sat on my skin without properly penetrating and my face stayed dry.

On top of that I used very stripping cleansers to keep my two biggest nemeses black heads and subcutaneous white bumps at bay. These cleansers dried out my eye area (despite me trying very hard to avoid my eye area) to the point of flaking and texture on my eyelids and the inner corners of my eyes. My skin overall was angry sensitive and very very dry. Nothing would really help.

The first change came when I used a discontinued gel-based moisturizing mask by bebe. My skin inhaled the product and for the first time in weeks it felt almost comfortable. Because the product is discontinued I went to find an alternative and stumbled upon the balea line for dehydrated skin specifically which contains a cream gel (they also have an eye roll on, moisture serum and sheet mask ->Balea Aqua), bought it and BOY DID THAT THING MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

So this cream and the Tuesday Talk sparked the overhaul of my skincare routine. I decided to do this as a bit of an experiment and see what my skin feels like in the next 30 days. I don’t expect miracles, actually I am very weary of  the white bumps and black heads that I expect to get worse but I am ready to be surprised.

Here is my morning and night routine that I plan on keeping like this unless my skin deteriorates drastically. I am on a very tight budget at the moment so all of these products are drugstore.

Morning:
Alterra cleansing emulsion for very dry skin with organic shea butter and aloe (cream cleanser)
Rival de Loop Hydro eye cream for dehydrated skin (gel cream)
Rival de Loop Hydro moisturizing gel (serum with hyaluronic acid)
Balea Aqua moisturizing cream gel

Night:
Rival de Loop cleansing oil to break down oil, dirt, make up (discontinued but I have two back up bottles,oops :] I really hope they bring it back)
Alterra cleansing emulsion for very dry skin to cleanse the skin
Balea 5% Urea eye cream for very dry skin (has cleaned up all texture and flakiness within two uses)
Rival de Loop Age intensive serum (hyaluronic acid and detoxifying properties, don’t know about those but it does give an extra round of moisture)
Balea Aqua moisturizing cream gel

I am on the second day for this routine and so far my skin feels very comfortable, there is no tightness whatsoever, instead my skin looks really healthy and ‘plump’ (I hate the word ‘plump’). AND it doesn’t make me oily. So much win. On top of that I am pms’ing like a pro at the moment, which traditionally means that I have problems eating right and my skin is all over the place with cystic acne, etc. So far the acne is at a complete minimum, though.

Another disclaimer: I am aware that most of these products may not be too too great on the ingredients side but a) they are all formulated in Germany abiding by our rather strict laws when it comes to cosmetics and b) I AM ON A BUDGET. I DO NOT HAVE THE MONEY TO SPEND 150.000€  ON SKINCARE PRODUCTS. I HAVE BILLS TO PAY AND A CAT TO FEED.

And another one: My only problem with this routine is that there is no sun screen in there, I am working on fixing that because, trust me I know how important sun screen is, especially with a skin as fair as mine.

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June Playlist 2015

I’ve always loved music, but over the past few months, especially since my Gran’s death, music started to play a huge role again in my life. We all know I’m mainly a metalhead and I am sure that this love will never end, I have started to explore other fields lately. Especially country. A couple of years ago I started with a Gloriana song, then Lady Antebellum made an appearance (to whom I returned this winter for their Christmas album). Through one of my recent mega-favorite youTubers Casey Holmes I found Kip Moore this late winter. I still love his album but have since expanded my palate. Now let’s see what is actually on my playlist:

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Pitch Perfect 2 OST
PP2 must have been one of my most eagerly awaited movies of 2015. I was lucky enough to be able to go see the preview with my best friend and I thoroughly enjoyed the movie, even if the German accent of DSM is cringe-worthy, but the story was ditzy and semi- parodiacal with a ton of funny moments and great cameos. I still can’t get over Clay Matthews et. al. , he was so great (for a Packer, anyway… jk 😜) The music they chose for the movie didn’t seem to be as mainstream as in the first movie but that maybe a German perspective because for instance the Country parts of the Riff Off (yes, there is another one and it is great IMO) don’t translate that well here, we simply don’t know them. I loved the movie’s rendition of the Universal fanfare (which is my favorite movie fanfare to begin with) as an a cappella piece for Elizabeth Banks’ and John Michael Higgins’ characters, perfect beginning!  Next on my list of tracks that stood out to me is the Kennedy Center Performance. This one ties almost seamlessly on to the last performance of the original PP movie with its different styles and upbeat tone. Then I got the Car Show performance, which introduces DSM and I loved their dark edgy set up and I love that they used Muse’s Uprising which is a song that we desperately need in this day and age. The Riff Off was one of my most anticipated parts and it was almost equal parts mainstream pop, country and 90’s hip hop (major throwback moment). I also loved the Bellas’ Back to Basics mash up and the campfire edition of Cups.

Last but not least the two world championship performances. Again I loved both DSM and Bellas, especially Flashlight was a nice touch. Sidenote: I would have loved to have Katey Sagal actually contribute a full track for the soundtrack, she has such a great voice.

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Carrie Underwood – Greatest Hits: Decade #1
After PP2 I was obsessing over the Riff Off, especially over the country part. I really loved Beca’s part and went looking for the title and voilà here comes Carrie Underwood with Before He Cheats. Demolishing someone’s property just because is neither legal nor morally correct, but fantasizing about is just fine IMHO. Either way, because of Before He Cheats I listened into Carrie’s Best of- Album and loved it. Some songs just make me dance around the room (Cowboy Casanova, Last Name and Undo It), some are just freaking cute (All-American Girl), some just strike a chord with me (Wasted, Little Toy Guns, Blown Away, So Small) and some I still can’t listen to in public because they still make me cry everytime (Just A Dream, Temporary Home, Don’t Forget to Remember Me). And some I love just so, like Mama’s Song, Two Black Cadillacs (don’t get me started on that one, I’m obsessing over it -.-) and surprisingly Jesus, Take the Wheel and Something in the Water, even though everything with an even borderline christian message makes me run screaming for the hills. I have settled for neo-humanist with agnostic tendencies and I am very comfortable with that.

A lot of Carrie’s songs tell stories, some are a bit cutesy and poppy but I really like that at the moment. I love her voice and the warmth her music seems to have in it (obviously all due to how it is arranged, etc.). Due to the ‘all out of hope and all out of fight’ I was in the past months, all I want right now is to curl up with music that just envelopes me and gives me peace for a while and Carrie Underwood and before her Kip Moore do that to me.

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Xandria – Sacrificium
Boy, their new singer has an angelic voice o_O She essentially beats everybody else I have ever listened to before. Btw, here is your metal for the month. Our Neverworld , The Undiscovered Land and Come With Me are the perfect songs to be lured away to better places, Until the End keeps me going and Little Red Relish and Stardust kinda tell stories. And OH MY GOD that voice.

So there you go, this is what will get me through the month, it’s a tough one too, with a paper due in the second half of June that I simply am not allowed to screw up.
I miss singing, too. I used to sing a lot and in a band but I haven’t done it in a LOOONG time and now when I use my voice I can’t hit the high notes anymore the way I used to and it sounds all scratchy and dusty. Meh. Need to get back to just belt sh*t out. It’s good for the soul.

Share the Love: Here’s to my Girls Jaclyn and Casey!

Remember how a few months ago I was complaining that I didn’t like my make up anymore, that I didn’t like applying it, that I didn’t like the outcome? That has changed pretty drastically over the last few months and it is largely because of Jaclyn Hill and Casey Holmes.

YouTube has always been a lot more about adapting techniques rather than picking up product recommendations (even though you might doubt that if you have read my xKarenina post from over a year ago). My first proper make up techniques I learned from copying xKarenina and the Pixiwoo sisters. A few months ago I had reached my limits with these techniques, they just didn’t do it for me anymore. That and my skincare was messing up my foundation situation, more on that later.

It was about that time that I randomly found Jaclyn Hill on YouTube. I couldn’t tell you anymore how at this point. However as soon as I did I fell into a Jaclyn-shaped hole and didn’t come up for air until I had binged on basically all of her videos that are available on YouTube. I remember that this Jaclyn-binge seriously messed with writing my thesis at the time but I regret nothing, NOTHING I tell you!

Jaclyn is a self-taught Florida-based make up artist who worked for MAC as well as doing free lance. Together with Gerard Cosmetics and Morphe she has launched lipsticks and lipglosses and a massive eyeshadow palette respectively. I wish I could get my hands on her eyeshadow palette but 18$ shipping to Europe is a bit hefty for my wallet at the moment. She has the most bubbly, sweet personality and never fails to put a smile on my face with her lovely goofiness. Her make up tutorials are little treasures to me that I HAVE to watch as soon as they hit my sub box, seriously I couldn’t pick a favorite if I tried. Most of her looks are very full on. Always with lashes, at least 3-5 different shadows, contour, blush, highlighter, the like. But they are also little pieces of art everytime. Beautifully and very perfectly executed make up application.

What I learned from her is definitely to shade and blend my crease with warm brown transition colors before applying the lid color. I specifically like a mixture of Honeycomb and Toast (or Toast on its own) from the Sleek Au Naturel palette for that, while I like Bark and Regal to deepen my outer corner.

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When it comes to single shadows I like Go Charlie Brown by Catrice (also nice to deepen the outer corner for a lighter more nude look), and from the new essence I <3 nude range my favorite tauping. Note that I mostly use matte colors in the crease, I have come to not really like shimmer in my crease.

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Two other palettes that have made my life  a lot easier are the Catrice Absolute Matt and Absolute Rose plettes by Catrice. Both palettes have great taupey matte shades that work perfectly as crease shades.

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Also because of Jaclyn I rediscovered my 224 brush by Sigma which had previously been collecting dust . The 224 is the best to softly blend together crease shades. I am going to invest into a little smaller crease brush soon just to have a slightly more precise option.

My other big YouTube crush of recent months has been Casey Holmes. Southerner, dog mommy of three and with the most amazing no-bullshit kinda personality. Super fierce, super feisty, kinda sarcastic and still really sweet. Girl after my own heart in other words. Make up wise she and Jaclyn are rather similar: Full on, lashy, colorful and incredibly precisely executed. Much like Jaclyn she applies her crease colors/transition shades before the lid color, does an amazing job at contouring and her lips look always top notch.

From her I got the tape trick, to get a super precise eyeshape, the way to do your contour with that narrow flat top kabuki by Nars (the name escapes me, it actually looks a lot like the brushes you get in powder compacts, and one of those I am actually currently using when I feel like contouring) and partially because of her I recently got away from my super nudes into darker nudes .

Both girls together helped my with my brows. They are still not where I would like them but we are getting there (me and the brows that is).

I’m really grateful that I found these girls,both their personalities and skills really enrich my life at the moment and if you feel so inclined go give them a look-see or a follow, I feel they’re really worth your while.

The post in which I show you what I am doing differently with my make up will come up as soon as possible, but today was another of those days where it has been sleeting and raining all day and the light was absolutely horrendous. Sun in February in Germany can be really hard to come by.

Update All MAC Month and Project 100 Days/Mini Haul

I mentioned in my last post that I was thinking about doing an All MAC Month like I had done an All Essie Month in December. I started on February 1st and… couldn’t pull it off. I love my MAC make up I do, but after a while all the shimmer ( I don’t seem to have matte MAC shadows) and the lack of true neutrals got to me. On the 14th I called it quits. I will make an effort to wear my MAC shadows more but right now I need my Catrice All About Matt and All About Rose palettes as well as my Naked 2. The way I do my make up (post still to come as soon as I can get the lighting to cooperate) has changed so much the MAC shadows can’t pull it off anymore. So that was a fail.

My Project100Days was a bit of a fail too and then again it wasn’t.

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The first fail came when one of my DM’s of choice had 20% store wide and 50% on color cosmetics. That was too good to pass up BUT I only bought stuff that had been on my list for a long time like the Maybelline Color Tattoo in Permanent Taupe, their gel eyeliner in blue (finally a blue liner that doesn’t stain my eyelids, I couldn’t be happier) and the Garnier micellaire water for acne prone skin. I also bought essie Merino Cool which has been discontinued since, but polishes are not banned so that was technically not a fail. I also bought two back up mascaras because I am about to run out of my regular one and have already run out of my water proof mascara (sucks when you have a funeral to host), again buying back ups is not a fail. So that sort- of- fail came about three weeks ago, the second one came today.

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Rossmann had 30% off of eye products (read shadows, liners, mascaras) and I treated myself to another  Maybelline Color Tattoo in Bad to the Bronze/ On and On Bronze and one of the new essence I <3 Nude shadows in my favorite tauping. The I <3 Nude shadows have the same incredible quality as the shadows of the Cookies and Cream TE a while back and while I usually work with more grey and purple taupes this is ever so much browner and warmer, the perfect crease and possibly contouring color. Ever since I started wearing make up at work colors like this have become my best friend, in fact the Catrice All About Matt palette has become my ‘Work- Palette’. It is so easy to wear this really light and neutral so that it gives just some definition to the eyes without drawing too much attention or that it would be noticeable if something moved or smudged (which so far it hasn’t, the shadows are great quality, especially for the price).

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On top of that I bought a back up of my Rival de Loop Moisturizing Gel, which comes in a new packaging and doesn’t say ‘without silicones/parabens’ anymore. I’m rather weary of that and I can’t compare the ingredients because I don’t have the box the old one came in anymore. Makes me a little grumpy that. I also got a back up of the clear up strips.

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However, I have been really good at asking myself ‘Do I really need that? Do I have something comparable? Would I actually wear that?’ So yes, I failed a little bit, but over the past 8-ish weeks I have become so much better at buying only relevant make up, if that makes sense. For instance I stood in front of the Catrice Nude Purism display today and bought NOTHING even though everything looked SO nice and was reasonably good quality. For the simple reason that I either had something comparable or I knew I wouldn’t wear it for long. And even when DM had their 50% off I didn’t go completely cray but only bought the stuff I had thought about for a long time and would really get use out of.

Today February 19th is actually hump day. 50 days of the 100 are done and dusted. Even though I didn’t stick to the ban perfectly I feel like I have found a balance for buying make up. I feel very comfortable with my collection right now.

If I don’t muck up big time in the next 50 days, I think Project 100 Days was a success

Update Project100Days

It’s been almost 4 weeks since we started Project100Days and here we are:
Last week I bought the last item on my exempt list and I am now faced with failure everytime I buy a new make up item.

Over the past 4 weeks I bought one book that was not on my list.

I bought no music or dvds eventhough I wish I could right now, because I am going through a phase at the moment where I am heartfelt bored with the music I have, but I have started to rediscover some of the cds I haven’t listened to in a while and then there is Spotify.

The ban on candy basically didn’t work, whatsoever. I have reduced my candy intake but that is about that. On top of it all we are currently dealing with a sudden death in the family and I compensated some of it by eating comfort food. I wish I were stronger than that but it turns out I am not.

When it comes to make up I am actually happy with what I have in my stash. The last two items I bought were the All About Matte and All About Rose palettes by Catrice which I both greatly enjoy and let’s face it, the only other eyeshadows I reach for are my Urban Decay Naked 2 and my Sleek Au Naturel (I will do an update on the changes in doing my make up as soon as I get around to it). The only thing I am still hankering after is the dark blue gel liner by Maybelline and maybe the bad to the bronze color tattoo.

On top of it all I am thinking  about making February an All MAC Month. Meaning all color make up will be from my MAC stash (accept for basics like mascara, brows and powder which I don’t have anything from MAC from). If I actually do that, expect a lot of red lips and colorful eyes :D I did something similar back in December with my essie challenge which was a lot of fun and I think it is a great way for me to rediscover and appreciate the make up I so lovingly selected and spent a sh*t ton of money on.

All in all I am surprised how easy it was for me to not buy dvds and music. I guess Amazon Prime and Spotify cover most of my needs without me having to buy anything.

Except for that one slip up (which was the first book in the C.J. Sansom Shardlake-series for Kindle on a special deal if you must know ;D) I’m doing real well with books too. Ever since that death I am having some trouble with my suspense of disbelief which makes reading basically impossible and watching TV shows and movies a lot less enjoyable, but it seems to be getting better. It’s no fun when you’re grieving and you can’t even escape from it by reading or watching something.

I feel like the Project100Days is really starting now, when my exempt list is done and I have no excuse anymore to buy new make up, we’ll see how it goes from here on out.

Something that definitely has changed already is how I buy things. In everything I buy, even food, I have become highly selective and I am starting to come around and appreciate what I have. What helps me is to go through my things, especially make up and books about once a week to still my thirst for new stuff to buy by remembering what I have.

All things considered I’m good with how things are going, bring on the next 73 days!