Don’t be mad at me, please. TRS fam, I KNOW that I have abandoned you this summer. Before you swear me off forever, I promise I have a good reason: I MOVED! Yup, your girl packed her bags and crammed her copious amount of stuff into her car and drove up north. I spent the early part of the summer hanging out in New Jersey, safe and well taken care of thanks to some amazing family friends. It wasn’t long before I started to get the itch to get on the road again and finally head to my intended destination– ladies and gentleman, your girl is a New Yorker now!

I’m living in Brooklyn and figuring life out. I can’t say I’m quite at my destination yet but I have done some pretty interesting things along the way:

1. was invited to The Color Purple’s Tony Awards Watch Party! I met Oprah.

oprah
Yes, that is gum in my mouth. Yes, I am screaming. (I wasn’t the only one acting brand new. I swear!)

2. I alsooooo met Dannielle Brooks aka Taystee from “Orange is the New Black”

img_6196
This is a terrible picture of me and a beautiful picture of her. Such is life. I posted it anyway.

3. I made it into an “Improv Everywhere” flash mob video!!


One moment I was straight chilling in Bryant Park and the next, I was on stage clapping it up with 100 random people in the park.

4. I’ve been working on my other blog, Selfies and Snark.

I haven’t given up on writing, my fine friends. Not even a little bit.

That’s just a taste my friends. Tell me, what have you been up to?

Glow. Glow. Glow. Word on the street is that if you say it three times you can make it so. I personally believe that my highlight is the foremost way in which I win friends and influence people, so you need to know that I am treating this review like SERIOUS BUSINESS. Thankfully, the Marc Jacobs Beauty Glow Stick Illuminator is worth it.
Marc_Glow_Stick_Box_Dark_Skin

Product received courtesy of Influenster. All opinions, of course, are my own.

I’ll admit it, I was highly skeptical when I first opened up this illuminator. I received the color “Spotlight”– Marc Jacob’s universal shade. As a brown skinned lady, I always meet the word “Universal” with a healthy bit of side-eye. When I saw this beautiful, bright white pearlized stick, I was nearly positive that this highlighter was going to make me look like Casper with a tan.

MarcGlowStick_package

See what I mean? This is one swipe, applied directly from the stick to the back of my hand. The color is bright but beautiful, a silverish goldish pearl that catches the light of the back of my hand. But still. There was no way that this color was going to work for me. Right?

Marc_Glow_Stick_Swatch_Dark Skin

I’m willing to admit when I’m wrong. I blended the swipe in with my fingers and the stark shade melted into my skin and left a lovely soft gold highlight behind. No sign of ghostliness, no obvious chunks of glitter, just a really nice soft glow. If I was able to achieve these results with one thick swipe and rudimentary finger blending, how would this translate onto my face?

MarcGlowStick_Blended

VERDICT

The Marc Jacobs Beauty Glow Stick Illuminator is a win in my book. The formula is easily blendable and leaves skin with a very natural and very dewy “lit from within” type of glow. You won’t find a trace of chunky glitter here. The packaging is…different…but its generous size and oblong shape do serve their purpose– I can see you swiping this stick straight on the skin and patting it in with your fingers. And yes, the color “Spotlight” tells no lies– the universal shade lets you and your glow be the star of the show.

Watch the video and see how the shade looks in action!

CoverGirl Queen Collection. These three words add up to unending possibilities for Black Girl Magic. CoverGirl’s line of lipsticks, bronzers, foundations, eyeliners and mascaras are specifically marketed to all of us brown girls; a group of women who are often overlooked when it comes to beauty.

covergirl queen collection

She’s Your Queen To Be!

When I walk down the aisle of the drugstore, sometimes it feels like I’m invisible. There’s 12 shades of beige, from porcelain to sand, but only one or two that could even touch my skin’s chocolate brown. CoverGirl’s Queen Collection fills that gap with a wide shade range for all women with dark skin.

Though I was sent these products for free for review, as always, all of the opinions are my own.

I, like every human being alive, love receiving packages in the Mail. So when I got this package from CoverGirl, naturally I was curious. I had used some CoverGirl products in the past but they were never my first stop when it came to picking up makeup in the drugstore.

The Foundation: Natural Hue Liquid Makeup in “Spicy Brown”

The Natural Hue Liquid Foundation in “Spicy Brown” was a pretty spot-on color match and the formula, when applied with a damp BeautyBlender, went on smoothly with medium coverage. It took about two squeezes of product to get my desired level of coverage– though it was a excellent match, the formula was a bit sheer for my liking.

Pick it up: CoverGirl Queen Collection Natural Hue Liquid Makeup

Covergirl Queen Collection Makeup

The Lipstick: CoverGirl Queen Collection Stay Luscious Lipstick in “Duchess”

The lipstick was a nice surprise. I am slightly addicted to liquid lipsticks at the moment and though I had seen these Queen Collection lipsticks in the store, I had never bothered to actually pick one up. I was missing out.

The lipsticks have a smooth formula and apply with a semi-opaque satin finish. The lipsticks are moisturizing and the color payout is bold, if slightly sheer. The color is build able so if yo really want to amp the color you can. The lippie is formulated to be long-lasting: even though you’re not going to get the staying power of a liquid lip, you’ll be left with a moisturized pout for at least a couple of hours.

Pick it up: CoverGirl Queen Collection Stay Luscious Lipstick
CoverGirl Queen Collection Lipstick Mascara

The Mascara: CoverGirl Queen Collection False Lash Drama

SO. MUCH. WIN. Out of all of the products in this collection, this is the one that I will definitely be picking up again. The short, firm bristles on the wand manage to wrap every single lash in mascara, providing an undeniable boost in fullness after one coat. This is the first drugstore mascara that I’ve found to be comparable to my OG favorite, Beauticontrol’s Dramatic Lash Mascara.

My lashes are short, fine and brown. (Brown skin, brown lashes. ::Shakes fist at the sky.::) Once I applied this mascara, my lashes were still short but they were curved upward and fanned out and deliciously dark. This mascara really struts its stuff when it comes to my bottom lashes– beautiful black fringe abounds.

Pick it up: CoverGirl Queen Collection False Lash Drama Mascara

CoverGirl Queen Collection Mascara

All in all, I think CoverGirl has a winner on it’s hands when it comes to the Queen Collection. These products are worthy of Brown-skinned beauties everywhere.

Tell me, will you be picking up anything from the Queen Collection?

Certified, unabashed lipstick addict here. If I am out of the house– ok, if I’m awake– then I am wearing something on my lips. I’ve been a lipstick addict since I was a young teen. Back in the day, I was a fan of this really amazing frosted bronze-nude Beauticontrol shade called “Nude Icing”. It made me feel sophisticated and grown up and perfectly polished. I, never having been one to stick with just one thing, counted the color “Diva” as my other favorite.

Diva was all that the name implied and more– the vampy, deep wine color brought the same drama to my lips that being a teenager brought to my life.

It’s practically my life’s work, you know, the collecting and documenting lipsticks that look incredible on brown-skinned beauties. In a world where darker skinned women don’t see themselves reflected NEARLY enough in the beauty world, it is a mantle that I wear with pride. After all, someone has to do it!

In the video below, I swatch and try on 5 of the best lipsticks for brown skin. Ranging from nude to purple to red, there is nothing but moisturizing, brilliant colorful goodness here. All of the lipsticks are from Beauticontrol’s Hydra Brilliance line so you know that you can grab your favorites from me here or by popping by the TRS shop and clicking on “Beauticontrol”.

Tell me…Which lip look is your favorite?

I am not a morning person. Don’t try to change me or send me any articles promising to teach me how to be a morning person– you’re just going to have to accept me as I am. Since I am well aware that I am not always at my best first thing in the morning, I have 7 beauty essentials in my bag at all times.

When it comes to putting together a beauty essentials kit, you’ve got to assess your own needs. For me, I feel my best when I have a smooth complexion, groomed brows and bold lipstick. If you are a girl who cannot live without smokey eyes and flushed cheeks than your toolbox will look a little different than mine. The key to true beauty is figuring out what makes YOU feel beautiful and owning your uniqueness!

Take a look at the contents of my bag:

In the bag, I keep the essentials to make sure that I have the look that I want. I want bright eyes and bold lips– my concealer and brows take care of that. One of my favorite liquid lipsticks is the NYX Liquid Suede Lip Creme in Cherry Skies. The smooth long-lasting formulation and rich color ensure that I have a perfectly polished appearance.

What do you keep in your bag to make sure that your look is on point?