The Monday Edit, February 22, 2021

Some articles to read, videos to watch,

and words to think about for the week ahead.

articles to read

If you haven’t heard yet, Hautelook is on its way out. The sales that the Nordstrom owned company typically features will be incorporated into the Nordstrom Rack website. Nordstrom Drops Hautelook from

I watch a lot of remodeling, house flipping, and real estate type shows. Considering how often they are featured, you would think that someone would mention that farmhouse sinks are high maintenance. Check out this article to find out the reasons you may not what a farmhouse sink after all.

I’ve been living in my current place for over a year now and I’m still looking for entryway solutions. I’m working with a very small space so most suggestions have been too large. I finally found an article that has some slim options. 9 Tiny Entryways with Seriously Big Organization Ideas from

Videos to Watch

I’m not a minimalist nor do I have plans to become one, but I still find a lot of value in the videos from Ronald L. Banks.

After striking out with 2 different glowy primers to help with my dry skin issues, I’ve been on the hunt again.  I found this video from Kelly Gooch that has some good recommendations to look into.

Words to think about

This is a quote I refer back to often. In honor of being blessed enough to celebrate my 38th birthday yesterday, it seemed fitting.

“For sure we live in a youth-obsessed culture that is constantly trying to tell us that if we’re not young and glowing and “hot,” we don’t matter. But I refuse to buy into such a distorted view of reality. And I would never lie about or deny my age. To do so is to contribute to a sickness pervading our society—the sickness of wanting to be what you’re not. I know for sure that only by owning who and what you are can you step into the fullness of life. I feel sorry for anyone who buys into the myth that you can be what you once were. The way to your best life isn’t denial. It’s owning every moment and staking a claim to the here and now. You’re not the same woman you were a decade ago; if you’re lucky, you’re not the same woman you were last year. The whole point of aging, as I see it, is change. If we let them, our experiences can keep teaching us about ourselves. I celebrate that. Honor it. Hold it in reverence. And I’m grateful for every age I’m blessed to become.” — Oprah Winfrey, What I Know for Sure

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sticking around and checking out more of my content. 

  • Brands A-Z: Check out this index if you want to know what products I have posted about in the past.
  • MAC Cosmetics:  I likely have some swatches you’ve been searching for if you love Mac as much as I do. 
  • Shop My Stash:  Join me as I share swatches of my products and occasionally search for alternatives to new releases. 

Lancome Makeup Round-Up

Lancome 435 bisque w canyon eyeshadow gold lame eyeshadow 25 brush dual finish highlighter dazzling bronze

Although this isn’t an exhaustive round-up of the entire brand, I wanted to talk about the current products that I own from Lancome before I let them go.  This is a great brand that I can truly show appreciation for, but I’ve just come to realize that it’s not for me.  I always have a good experience using their products and I’m always able to find items that suit my skin tone.  But on the downside, I’m continually disappointed by the packaging when considering the price I paid.  That is saying a lot considering I never pay full price for Lancome, and I still come away feeling like I overpaid.  As a military spouse, I can get Lancome products for 15% off and I don’t have to pay tax.  The products I’ve tried just feel lighter and cheaper than brands in a comparable price range like NARS and Bobbi Brown. 

Cheek & Contour Brush #25, $40

Lancome cheek and contour brush 25 review
Lancome cheek and contour brush, #25

This brush was such a disappointment despite getting it for $32 instead of the $40 retail price.  It is a natural goat hair brush, which commands a higher price, but that is where the price justification ends.  It is not as soft as it should be at this price and I’m not impressed with the construction of the brush. It is technically put together better than a drugstore brush, but it doesn’t feel like a $40 brush to me. I can’t tell you how the small/contour end works.  Since I never intended to use that part of the brush, I never tested it. 

Lancome cheek and contour brush 25 review

Overall it doesn’t look as nice to me as other comparably priced brushes and the longer I’ve owned it the more it sheds.  As an example, my Estee Lauder blush brush is natural hair, cost $42, and doesn’t shed at all.  I’ve had the Estee Lauder brush since early-2019 whereas I just got the Lancome brush in March 2020. I guess I should give it some credit because it picks up just enough product and it does blend well. The problem is that I have used much cheaper brushes that I can say that about.

Dual Finish Highlighting Powder, $41

Lancome Dual Finish Highlighter Dazzling Bronze Dark Skin
Lancome 05 Dazzling Bronze

Even though this formula is too intense for my taste, I think this is a really nice underrated formula.  It comes in a nice range of shades and has a unique creamy texture.  I do have dry skin which I think makes some highlight formulas appear more intense.  In the height of summer when my t-zone produces some oil, I notice that highlights melt into the skin making them appear less intense.  You can see swatches and my full review here.

Color Design High Pigment – True Color Eye Shadow, $22

Lancome Color Design Eyeshadows Gold Lame and Canyon
Lancome Color Design Eyeshadows in Gold Lamé (left) and Canyon (right)

This is one of the nicest eyeshadow formulas I’ve used, but I still don’t manage to use them enough.  That just happens sometimes, we can think something is objectively better and still prefer something else.  For a point of reference, this formula reminds me most of the bareMinerals Gen Nude formula but is less dense.  They are somewhat hard pressed, but at the same time I wouldn’t lump them in with old school MAC eyeshadows.  I wish the lids were a flip top instead of sliding up to open, but that is just a personal quirk. You can see swatches and my full review here.

Teint Idole Ultra Stick Foundation, $43

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Stick Foundation 415 Bisque W and 435 Bisque W
L to R: 415 Bisque W and 435 Bisque W

Lancome has just released an updated formula for their stick foundation and in doing so has dropped from having 29 shades to just 22.  The above shades, 415 Bisque W and 435 Bisque W, didn’t make it into the new lineup.  Both of these shades are available in the liquid version of Teint Idole Ultra so I decided to go ahead and show swatches of them. The brand seems to do a decent job keeping their shades consistent across formulas, so maybe that is still helpful for someone.

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Stick Foundation 415 Bisque W and 435 Bisque W swatches
Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Stick Foundation (discontinued) L to R: 415 Bisque W and 435 Bisque W (heavy swatch, wet)
Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Stick Foundation 415 Bisque W and 435 Bisque W swatches
Lancome Stick Foundation (discontinued) L to R: 415 Bisque W and 435 Bisque W (blended, dried down)

As far as my untrained non-cosmetic chemist eye can tell, they have removed the sunscreen ingredients and the tambourissa trichophylla leaf extract (also called rosabora) from the new formula.  Based on the below ingredient listings, I have a hard time believing the new formula will perform much differently than the old formula.  However, I recognize that I am not a cosmetic chemist and that, at times, any change no matter the size can make a difference.

Discontinued Formula


New 2021 Formula


Past Experiences

Despite my occasional disappointment in packaging that seems cheap, there are some exceptions.  But even when I do like the packaging, it usually turns out those are the times I don’t like the product inside. For instance, I love the L’absolu Rouge lipstick ($32) packaging, but the scent of it bothers me.  Fortunately, in my experience, the scent of the lipstick doesn’t linger after application. It just bothered me so much I didn’t even want to open the ones that I owned in the past. I also think the packaging of their liquid Teint Idole Ultra Foundation ($47) is quite nice, although the formula didn’t work out for me when I tried it.  And taking it way back, I did like the packaging and included brush for the Audacity in Paris eyeshadow palette ($68).

So there you have it. As it turns out Lancome just isn’t a good fit for me personally. I do think they excel at formulating great makeup, and that for some people, it will surely tick all the boxes. For me, however, it just doesn’t live up to the price tag. I also think that someone who hasn’t tried as many products as I have over the years, would have a totally different take on the brand. I’ll definitely be keeping an eye on this brand, but for now, I’m done buying from it.

What are your thoughts on Lancome? Let me know in the comments below.

Oh and last thing. If you are a Lancome fan, or have your eye on something, they have a 25% off sale on the website that ends at 1:59 PM PT February 12, 2021.

 **Disclaimer:  I purchased all products featured with my own money.  For my full disclosure policy, click here.

The Monday Edit, February 8, 2021

Some articles to read, videos to watch,

and words to think about for the week ahead.

articles to read

I discovered the girllovesgloss website while looking for reviews of the MAC Face and Body Mixing Medium. In this post she talks about how to use some MAC Pro products including the mixing medium.

Are you someone who gets dressed everyday to work from home? That’s how I am and it really helps get me started and have a productive day. But make no mistake, despite the pandemic, not everyone gets to work from home. Here’s some work wear inspiration for those who still have to make the trek to the office. What to Wear to Work (Vogue UK)

Speaking of working from home, Karen from Makeup and Beauty Blog recently talked about sheer foundations she is loving.

There’s hard work being done to move us toward a more inclusive and diverse beauty industry. That work continues with an interview with the creator of the website Brown Girl Hands, Hannah Harris. Harris talks with Beth Gillette about her reasons for starting her website and Instagram account and the importance of brown skin representation in brand photography.

Videos to Watch

But seriously, has anyone tried the MAC Face and Body Mixing Medium? In this video, Senior National Artist for MAC, Fatima Thomas, features the product.

Watch makeup artist, Fatima Thomas at work

This next one is a long video, but if you love makeup declutters, it’s a good one. She actually gives a short review of each product making it more helpful than some I typically see.

Words to think about

“…your gift is the thing that you do the absolute best with the least amount of effort.” — Steve Harvey

If you enjoyed this post, please consider sticking around and checking out more of my content. 

  • MAC Cosmetics:  I likely have some swatches you’ve been searching for if you love Mac as much as I do. 
  • Shop My Stash:  Join me as I share swatches of my products and occasionally search for alternatives to new releases. 
  • Window Shopping Wednesday: My thoughts on what’s new in beauty (or sometimes just new to me).

 **Disclaimer:  I purchased all products featured with my own money.  For my full disclosure policy, click here.

Month in Review: January 2021

A recap of this month’s blog posts.

NARS Matte Bronzing Powder in Samoa

NARS Matte Bronzing Powder Swatch (Samoa)Check out the new matte bronzing formula from NARS.

Smashbox Brushes ReviewThese synthetic brushes are seriously underrated, check out my review if you’ve been curious.

The Monday Edit, January 18, 2021: Since I love helping people and sharing knowledge, I decided to start putting the Monday Edit together. This is my way of sharing more of what personally interests me outside of the items I decide to swatch. On the 18th I shared articles about eating healthy and passive income. For videos, I shared a MUFE’s primer demo from Melissa Alatorre and another from a dermatologist sharing moisturizer recommendations for hyper-pigmentation.

Sigma Warm Neutrals Eyeshadow Palette Swatches: Sigma’s newest eyeshadow palette release is worth a second look. Check out this post for swatches and a few comparisons with their Cor-de-Rosa palette.

Palette: The Beauty Bible for Women of ColourA book review and some swatches of some featured products covered in the book.

The Monday Edit, January 25, 2021: On the 25th I talked you through some thoughts and research I did on lactic acid, salicylic acid, and niacinamide for my dry sensitive skin type. I shared a video of some “clean” beauty favorites from a new YouTuber I recently discovered. I also showed a couple videos showing the Becca Light Shifter collection.

Covergirl Trunaked Queenship Cream Shadow Stick (960 unruly): If you have been considering trying the covergirl shadow sticks, read this review first.

Brands A-Z: I took some time to add a brand guide to the navigation menu at the top of my website. If you are interested in reviews or swatches for certain brands, you can check that page to find out if I have what you are looking for. There is also a search bar on the right hand side of the site that is always available if you prefer to search that way.

Thanks for Reading! I hope your new year is off to a good start.