Category Archives: Beauty

Beauty Talk: September Sephora Play! Box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and style blog; September Sephora Play! Box

I know it feels repetitive to say this, because I feel like I’ve been saying it pretty much all year, but how are we nearly to October already!? I admit, I was pretty excited to receive this month’s box. August’s wasn’t amazing (full review here) so I was hoping this one would be great, and it didn’t disappoint! (Don’t forget to catch my last few reviews here and here.)

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and style blog; September Sephora Play! Box

  • Benefit Gimme Me Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel – I’ve been using this since it came in the mail instead of my normal e.l.f. brow pencil, and I definitely like it. It subtly darkens my brows without making them too dark (hello, light hair and fair skin I don’t want to overdo it). for the price point vs. my e.l.f., I don’t think I would purchase a full size, but I really do like the tiny brush and how easy it is to apply.
  • Stila Stay All Day Liquid Liner in black – This liner goes on super smoothly, and it did a pretty good job of staying in place all day. My daily liner is the Kat Von D Tattoo Liquid Liner.
  • I don’t think I would replace, as I think the Kat Von D creates a smoother line than the Stila and stayed just a touch better, but it’s a great alternative.
  • Laura Mercier Velour Lovers Lips in ‘Happy’ – Candidly, I totally forgot to add this into my shoot, because it was in my purse, which should tell you all you need to know. I’ve been wearing this lipstick and really like it. This totally surprised me, because I don’t normally wear non-matte lipsticks and this one has a little glitter but the color is perfect, which will make it perfect for holiday parties.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and style blog; September Sephora Play! Box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and style blog; September Sephora Play! Box

  • Belief the True Cream Moisturizing Bomb –  This was the product I was least excited about, but it turned out to be not so bad! It’s not super crazy thick like a lot of ‘moisture’ products are, but I’ve used it once a week and it definitely makes my (normal/combination) skin happy, and will be using it in winter to keep my skin hydrated. It’s light and has a citrus smell – which is exactly what I didn’t know I wanted!

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and style blog; September Sephora Play! Box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and style blog; September Sephora Play! Box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and style blog; September Sephora Play! Box

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Style accordingly, 

Beauty Talk: August Sephora Play! Box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; Sephora Play! box review

Another month, another beauty box from Sephora Play! (again, this post is not sponsored, I just love sharing new-to-me beauty products). You can catch my previous posts here from July and June.

This month’s box was exclusively products that were new to me. Most months, I’m super excited by at least 2 of the products, but this month was a bit meh.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; Sephora Play! box review

Brazilian Bum Bum Cream – Probably the product I was most excited to try, yet also most skeptical about. I started using this on the backs of my legs and booty, and immediately love the smell and the glow it provides (super subtle, but definitely enough to make you feel like a Brazilian babe!). Does it actually firm? Jury’s still out on that one, but it feels really smoothing as you put it on.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; Sephora Play! box review

Kat Von D Lock-It Concealer Creme– This concealer was a bit too thin for me to use on a spot treatment (I use this Tarte concealer for that) but would probably work well as an undereye concealer if you like something with a thinner consistency.

Too Faced Mascara Melt Off Waterproof Mascara Remover – I admittedly don’t generally wear waterproof mascara, but this is definitely an interesting concept. It comes out as a thicker oil on the wand. Definitely helps take off mascara without having to pull on your lashes with a cotton pad. (Overall, meh, I’ll probably stick to my liquid remover.)

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; Sephora Play! box review

Kat Von D Saint and Sinner Perfume Duo – My little secret is that rather than buy full-size bottles of perfume anymore, I have a small jar of samples that I rotate through. I liked both of these scents, they’re about what you’d expect. ‘Saint’ is a lighter, more floral scent while ‘Sinner’ is a darker, more masculine.

Micro Beauty Blender – Admittedly, I don’t use beauty bledner’s much, but the suggested use for this little guy is as a corrector, which I can totally get behind. Wet it, ring it out and you can use it to correct makeup missteps while creating that perfectly sculpted face.

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Style accordingly,

Stay All Day Series: Over and Under

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog; how to make your makeup stay all day

Last week, I shared the first post in a series about making your makeup stay all day. As mentioned, I had oily/combination skin growing up, and my makeup would be gone in just a few hours – SO frustrating, plus it felt like a colossal waste of money.

Since its taken me years to get my combo to something that really works for me, I wanted to share my favorite products.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog; how to make your makeup stay all day

Under:

  • Urban Decay Vitamin Infused B6 Complexion Prep Spray – I use this from time to time after washing my face (it works as a toner, too). I like that it mattifyes my skin.
  • Kopari Coconut Rose Toner – I actually got this after I shot these products, so no photo here, but I’ve become a big fan of this. It tones skin without leaving it feeling too dry. Plus the smell is amazing!
  • Tarte BB tinted primer (with SPF 30) – I love this stuff. There is absolutely NOTHING oily about it. It even feels matte when it comes out of the tube. I use this after washing, toning and moisturizing. (Pro tip: Generally, I will wash, tone and moisturize then go make breakfast so everything has a chance to soak into my skin before applying makeup. This helps my skin not feel so oily.) I’ll also use this on days I don’t feel like doing my makeup for the added SPF and for how even it makes my skintone.
  • Cover FX Mattifying Primer with anti-acne treatment – Shoutout to my girl Shivalicious for turning me on to this stuff a few years ago. It quickly became my mattifying go-to. It has definitely helped my skin!
  • Urban Decay Eyeshadow Priming Potion – This stuff is straight up MAGIC for me. I use this every day I wear eyeshadow. My lids stay perfectly in-place ALL DAY. Not even a little slippage. I can even leave my eye makeup on during a workout (for the record, this is not my normal practice, but hey, sometimes you have places to be after a workout) and it stays in place, no matter how sweaty I am.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog; how to make your makeup stay all day

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati style blog; how to make your makeup stay all day

 

Style accordingly, 

My favorite setting powders

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; the best makeup setting powders

After a very brief hiatus (sometimes you just need a little break), I’m back and ready to talk beauty. My goal seems to always be to make my makeup stay all day and NOT melt right off my face.

I’ve had oily/combination skin my whole life so making my face stay on all day without being a shiny mess is crucial. I’ve tried a LOT of products throughout the years so today I want to talk about setting powders. (There’s a post on the other products I use coming your way next week!)

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; the best makeup setting powders

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; the best makeup setting powders

  • Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder – I love this product. I typically use it when I’m going to an event or shooting for the blog. It really does give a little extra something to your skin – smooth, polished and a slight glow.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; the best makeup setting powders

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; the best makeup setting powders

  • Urban Decay Naked Skin Loose Finishing Powder – I used this baby forever until Sephora stopped carrying it (grrr….). I love this stuff though, and can’t recommend it enough if you’re looking for a nude setting powder over something white or neutral.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; the best makeup setting powders

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; the best makeup setting powders

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Style accordingly, 

July 2017 Sephora Play! Box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; July Sephora Play! Box Review

It’s hard to believe another month has essentially gone by already! 2017 is flying by faster than any year so far. Anyway, I wanted to share my thoughts on the products included in this months box.

I have to admit, I’m a big fan of the products included this month, so here we go:

  • Boscia Charcoal Pore Pudding – A black-and-white swirled charcoal face mask that detoxifies, minimizes the appearance of pores, and balances the skin’s hydration levels. I actually used this for the first time after getting home from the most humid day of the year, and it worked wonders for my skin. Actually did feel SUPER clean, and pulled out some gunk from my face that resulted from being a sweaty mess. Highly recommend.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; July Sephora Play! Box Review

  • bareMinerals Statement Matte Liquid Lip Color in ‘Luxe’ – I love a good matte liquid lip. My only issue with them tends to be that they’re drying, but this one isn’t. It goes on smoothly, and doesn’t dry my lips out like a lot of liquid lipsticks. Would definitely buy a full size. (Plus, you can never have enough blush/mauve-y pinks.)

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; July Sephora Play! Box Review

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; July Sephora Play! Box Review

  • Briogeo Roscaro Milk Reparative leave-in conditioning spray – As a blonde with color treated hair, I’m all about products that will repair my ends. I’ve been using this in lieu of my detangling spray, and so far, I like it. Definitely smooths my hair without weighing it down. Haven’t been using it long enough to say whether it actually repairs damage, but I’ll report back!

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; July Sephora Play! Box Review

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; July Sephora Play! Box Review

Shop the look:

 

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion and beauty blog; July Sephora Play! Box Review

Style accordingly, 

Beauty Faves: June Sephora Play Box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

Hard to believe we’re already in June, yet here we are. The year is nearly half over – what!? I’m excited to share another month of Sephora Play! products (I shared March here, and totally dropped the ball in May).

June’s theme is a ‘Summer State of Mind‘ and I’m once again loving the products they sent over. I’m a big fan of the fact that it’s generally a few products I’ve tried before and a few I haven’t.

As always, I highly recommend subscribing to Play! as it’s only $10/mo and you get deluxe samples!

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

  • Verb Sea Spray – I became a fan of Verb when their hair oil was included in another month’s box. (I use it between washed to tame my ends – it’s light enough for fine hair!). So when I saw another of their products to try, I was stoked. This stuff does give a beachy texture, but in my opinion, no sea salt spray really works WONDERS. I do like that it makes my hair easier to curl with a wand and give more textured waves, though.
  • Coola Makeup Setting Spray – What I love about this is that it has SPF 30 in it. The smell is pretty strong, so brace yourself. I am a longtime user of Urban Decay’s Makeup Setting Spray and this product isn’t changing my mind, but I can see myself using it on minimal makeup days when I’ll be outside.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

  • Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in ‘Lovesick’ – Funny story about this one is that I’m a BIG FAN of this particular lippie and I recently lost it. I bought a replacement one day before this little guy showed up in my Play! box. (I’m glad I now have two because it’s so popular it’s sold out online!)
  • Versace Perfume ‘Bright Crystal’ –
  • I have become the queen of hoarding perfume samples and going through those rather than buying perfume. I definitely like how actually bright this perfume smells. It’ll be an easy go-to
  • Klorane Dry Shampoo – This is my go-to dry shampoo for my fine, oily hair. The version with nettle oil (green top) is GREAT for keeping my hair from getting gross in between washes (I usually go every other day. Since my hair is so fine, I can’t go much longer than that.)
  • Benefit POREfection Primer
  • This product is obviously popular (or they’re just really good at marketing) because it’s everywhere all the time. I think I have about 5 samples of this stuff in my beauty drawer. I’ve tried it several times and haven’t ever been super impressed. It’s supposed to minimize pores, but I don’t really see that effect.

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

Success on Stilettos, a Cincinnati fashion blog; June Sephora Play! box

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Have you tried any of these products? If so, what were your thoughts?
Style accordingly, 

Recent Beauty Faves

Sephora Play! March box

I’ve been a Sephora Play! subscriber for over a year now, and the boxes just keep getting better. I jumped on the train as soon as it was available in my area.

(If you’re not aware, Sephora started it’s own monthly subscription box for $10/month for 5 deluxe samples – and no, this is not sponsored, I just really love this service.)

March’s box was particularly good, and since I hadn’t talked about it on the blog yet,  I figured it was time to share. Each month has a different ‘theme’ – March’s theme was ‘Glow Your Own Way’ with products designed to make your skin and hair shine and glow.

Sephora Play! March box

Sephora Play! March box

What I like best about each month is that it’s been a solid mix of products I’ve never heard of but am totally game to try and some that are already part of my everyday routine. Case in point, this month’s samples were:

Sephora Play! March box

Sephora Play! March box

Style Accordingly, 

Friday Faves: January Beauty Loves

It’s still hard to wrap my mind around the fact that it’s already February, so I guess that’s my excuse for this post being pretty late. I’ve been wanting to share some of my beauty favorites lately, both tried and true and some new-to-me products so here we go – better late than never I guess.

  • Sephora Collection ‘Plume’ Lashes – I’ve been using these for years, but wore them more frequently than usual in January, so I had to share them! They’re SO good. The best part is that you can use them for quite a few uses as long as you care for them. (AKA don’t drunkenly rip them off…)
  • Kat Von D Tattoo Liner – Another tried and true. I’ve repurchased this liquid liner over and over. It’s got a ‘felt’-type tip, but it’s not difficult to apply like some liquid liners plus it lasts ALL DAY.
  • Marc Jacobs Beauty (Re)Marcable Concealer  (in ‘Awake’)- Funny story about this concealer.. I use it for my everyday undereye concealer so I’m putting a good bit on each day, but this stuff LASTS. I bought it probably 2 or 3 years ago and JUST NOW replaced it! It’s $30, but well worth the price when it comes to brightening, coverage and cost per wear.

  • Tarte Creaseless Concealer –  This is a new one for me, but I’ve been in the market for a REALLY good blemish and dark spot concealer for pretty much years. I read other bloggers reviews on this and decided to give it a try and I’m glad I did. It’s really good, like really good. Great coverage and lasts all day.

  • L’Oreal Extraordinary Clay Shampoo & Conditioner – Over the last few months, I’ve been working to get my hair back to healthy. Years of bleach had my hair looking prettttttyyyy ratchet, not gona lie. I don’t wash my hair everyday, but on the days I do, I’ve been using the Kevin Murphy ‘Repair Me’ shampoo & conditioner (another product I recommend!). I’ve read you shouldn’t use the same shampoo & conditioner over and over so I’ve been alternating my Kevin Murphy with this. When I saw it was for ‘oily roots and dry ends’ I almost cried out ‘Where have you been all my life!?‘ in the drug store!

What are your beauty favorites lately? Please share, I love reading about new-to-me products.

Style accordingly,

Smile Brilliant for the Holidays

There’s no doubt that the holiday season always brings the opportunity for reunions, parties, gatherings – it doesn’t stop. With each opportunity to get together with old friends and spend time with family, also come endless photo opportunities.

What will make your selfies stand out? White teeth.

I’ve always been a proponent of teeth whitening. I’ve been drinking coffee since the age of 2 (yes, you read that right) and I love my red wine, so a little teeth whitening (I’ve used Crest White Strips a few times) has been necessary, so with the holidays right around the corner, I was so excited when Smile Brilliant reached out to me to try their whitening trays.

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How it works: Smile Brilliant sends you everything you need in an easy kit. It comes with molds to take impressions of your upper and lower teeth, which you make and send back to them. After about a week (so quick!) your whitening trays arrive and are custom molded to your teeth.

Once your trays arrive, you fill them using syringes of whitening gel. You can use them anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours per day, depending on how much time you have. They also provide desensitizing gel to put on for about 15-30 minutes after. I only used it the first couple of times I whitened, and it helped with any sensitivity. It’s also recommended to remineralize your teeth and prevent any staining. (Check out this video which illustrates how the whole process works.)

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My experience: I saw results after my first 3 uses. I tended to whiten for at least an hour each use, followed by the desensitizing gel. I definitely experienced a little teeth sensitivity at first, but it definitely calmed itself down. I also did experience a little gum redness, but that too worked itself out. Overall, Smile Brilliant was great. I love that the trays are custom, and that your trays are molded to your teeth. It’s also much less messy than a traditional white strip because the whitening gel goes right into the trays!

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The best part? You can win your own Smile Brilliant kit by clicking this link to enter.

You can ALSO get 5% off your order by using code: successonstilettos when you check out.

Dress accordingly,

Annie Signoff

 

*This post was sponsored by Smile Brilliant, but all opinions and thoughts are my own. 

Run, don't walk! Sephora sale!

It’s that time of year, ya’ll. The Sephora sale AKA early Christmas. 20% off EVERYTHING on the site is no joke.

The sale is currently open to all VIB Rouge members through today (use code 20ROUGE) until 11/7 and open to all other VIB members from 11/11-11/14 (code 20VIB).

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In light of the sale AND a conversation I had with my awesome brow magician (Hi, Wendy! – seriously, ya’ll she works wonders, go see her at Sia Spa) I wanted to share some of my tried and true beauty products from Sephora (in no particular order).

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  • Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector – I have this powder highlighter in two colors (Champagne Pop and Opal) and I use one EVERY day. Not only do they give an immediate glow, but it really lasts. I also have this liquid highlighter that I use a lot as well.
  • Laura Mercier Radiance Primer – I’ve blogged about this before, but I use this under my foundation (or mixed with my foundation) whenever I want my skin to really glow.
  • Sephora Collection Luxe False Lashes – I first purchased these lashes for my wedding (thanks, Shivalicious!) and I immediately became a believer. They price tag can be a little scary BUT they’re so worth it – I wore the same pair for almost a YEAR. They just recently wore out and I’m going to purchase my second pair.
  • IT Cosmetisc Superhero Mascara & Benefit Roller Lift Mascara– I use these two mascaras in combination (I apply IT Cosmetics first and then Benefit to lift) and I love what they do for my not-so-naturally lengthly lashes.

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  • Urban Decay Vice Lipstick – I have UD’s lipsticks in a ton of colors, especially the mattes. They’re not dry, which is great for me because I seem to have perpetually dry lips.
  • UD 24/7 Glide on Eye Pencil – I use this pencil to tight line my eyes every. single. day. and I cannot recommend it enough. They truly do glide on SO smoothly. It’s unlike any pencil liner I’ve ever used.
  • Sephora Collection Ink Gel – This cheek tint came in one of my Play! boxes and I haven’t looked back. I absolutely love it – I use it for everyday AND on days when I just throw it on over a BB cream.
  • Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick – Probably my favorite lippie to wear. Perfectly matte, not over-drying at all. The colors are SO vivid. My personal favorite is ‘Armageddon’ which will make even the palest person (me) look bronze (ie here)
  • NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil – Like the Kat Von D, I have this in quite a few colors and I love them. I especially love Cruella, Rikuguen and Never Say Never).

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Happy shopping! 

Annie Signoff