Falling for Bright Blush

Maybe it's because the weather is warming up, or maybe I've just been inspired by the Glossier Cloud Paint promotional images, but I've been all about brighter blush shades lately - who even am I? I've been such a diehard "no blush" blush girl for such a long time. My cheeks tend to get a little rosy on their own throughout the day, so I was always afraid of accentuating that. However, I realized how flattering and awakening it is when the color is placed behind the apples of my cheeks (on my face, anyway), and I feel like a whole world has been opened up for me.

The products that sparked this, of course, were the Glossier Cloud Paints.* Leave it to Glossier to get me to try something out of my comfort zone. I was thinking I would only use Dusk, the nude shade, but I've actually been getting the most use out of Haze, the berry color, and Puff, the cool pink shade. These are just beautiful, and they way they blend into the skin makes it look like a natural flush. Once I realized that a brighter, cool-toned blush actually suited my complexion and helped me look more awake, I started digging back through my collection and dusting off some old loves, as well as picking up a few new favorites.

I still gravitate towards cream products most days, as they're quicker and easier for me to apply. I've fallen back in love with the Estee Lauder Genuine Glow Blushing Creme* in Sweet Cheeks - it's a lovely, balmy formula that blends out super easily and leaves the most beautiful flush. It really perks up my skin and makes it look well-rested and glowy. Another stick formula I'm always reaching for are the Bite Beauty Multisticks - Mascarpone is my go-to when I'm wanting a more vibrant pink. It's a warm salmon shade that's super flattering and brightening. This formula also works on the lips and eyes if you're wanting to make a monochrome look out of it, too. I've also started using the Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in Blushed Rose. This is a little more neutral than the other blushes here, but since it's deeper than I normally wear, I figured it still counted. This formula is beautiful and easy to apply - I really need to try more from Bobbi Brown.

When I do want a powder blush, I've got two gorgeous shades I've been alternating between. The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Diffused Heat is an old favorite - I gave it to my sister a while ago, and then when she decided she didn't want it anymore, I took it back. I couldn't be happier to have it back, because this one really makes me look the healthiest out of all the options here. It's the prettiest pinky-coral shade with a touch of glow, and it seems to be the exact shade my skin turns when I blush. A newer one I got recently is the Givenchy Le Prisme Blush in Vintage Pink - I assumed it would be a more brown-y pink color, but it's quite bright on the skin. Swirling the four sections together creates such a lovely shade, and the formula of this is unreal - I'm not sure if I've ever felt a softer powder product.

Do you like brighter blushes, or are you more into neutrals and bronzers? What's your favorite blush?

The Twenty-Fifth Birthday Splurge

One of my goals for the year was to spend less money on new beauty products. And so far, I'm failing miserably. I had been good (well, better than usual) for a couple weeks, and since 25 is kind of a big birthday, I decided to treat myself to a few things using some of my birthday money. I'm hoping this will be my "last hurrah" of sorts, especially because we set a date for our wedding (!!) so saving money for that feels a whole lot more real now.

La Mer The Bronzing PowderI tried to resist this one, I really did. I certainly didn't need another bronzer, let alone one this expensive. But it's just so beautiful. I can see myself using this for years to come, and it makes me feel so happy to take it out and use it. It's such a lovely shade when all four sections are mixed together - not too orange, not too gray, with just a hint of glowy-ness. It's super smooth and pigmented and blends over the skin effortlessly. It does have a bit of perfume to it, so that's something to keep in mind if your skin is sensitive to that.

Givenchy Le Prisme Blush, 'Vintage Pink' | I found this beauty while perusing Sephora's website and decided the shade Vintage Pink had to be mine - I've been into brighter blushes lately. The formula of this is insane, so much softer and smoother than I was expecting! It kicks up a little bit of powder, but that's not something that ever annoys me about a product. I convinced my sister she needed the peach shade, and she vouches for how gorgeous it is, too.

By Terry Rouge Expert Click Stick, 'Bare Me' | I had heard nothing but rave reviews about these lipsticks, and being a fan of the few By Terry products I've tried, I decided to jump on the bandwagon and try one out for myself. I of course chose one of the nudes, Bare Me, and it's a beautiful color - not too beige, not too pink, just right. The formula is lovely as well. It glides onto the lips so comfortably and smoothly, and yet it's quite matte. It doesn't feel dry at all, though - this may be a dangerous new find.

Drunk Elephant B-Hydra Intensive Hydration GelDespite knowing this wouldn't be hydrating enough for my skin type on its own (gels never are), I wanted to try this to layer underneath more hydrating creams as more of a serum step. I had tried it on my hand recently in Sephora and was amazed at how smooth my skin instantly felt. So far it's been love, as is everything else I've tried from Drunk Elephant.

Dior Addict Lip Glow PomadeThis just looked too chic to ignore. I'm a huge fan of the original Dior Lip Glow balm, so I needed to try its new(ish) gloss counterpart. It doesn't really give my lips a color like the original does, but it's super comfortable and a beautiful gloss nonetheless. It feels quite nourishing on the lips and not sticky whatsoever - it's one of those "cushion-y" glosses.

Milk Makeup Eye Vinyl, 'Bridge' | I'm suddenly VERY into the glossy eyelid look (more on that soon), so I wanted to try one of the Eye Vinyls from Milk Makeup. I like that it's in a convenient click-pen so I can use it on the go without my fingers getting sticky. The color bridge is a sheer nude color that pretty much looks like a clear gloss - just what I wanted. I use a thin layer, but it doesn't feel sticky or goopy at all and gives me that editorial look I've been wanting.

Kevyn Aucoin The Exotique Diamond Eye GlossEven though I got the Milk Makeup product, I just couldn't resist this one. I had been adding it and removing it from my cart since it came out, so I finally decided to bite the bullet. This one is GORGEOUS, and if you just want to find the best of the best for eye gloss, this is it. It has tiny shimmer particles suspended in it, but this only adds to the glossy look once on the eyes - it doesn't look glittery in the slightest. This feels a little tackier than the Milk option, but it just means it sticks around longer. It's not going to keep your eyes glued open, A Clockwork Orange-style, or anything.

Have you gotten any fun new beauty products lately? And let me know if you're an April baby, too!