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Makeup

These 10 Travel-Size Makeup Products Make Packing Easy

It’s tempting to put up with moving your makeup around, squeezing it into every little crevice of your suitcase and makeup bag while traveling. But I’m here to tell you: invest in creating a travel size makeup kit now. Yes, even if you have an all-in-one makeup kit — invest in mini makeup products!

Trust me, I get it — you love your MAC makeup, and they don’t have your fav in a travel size. It’s scary to give up your favs. Who has time to research and try out new makeup, then put together a kit when getting ready to travel?

Me. I do. You’re welcome.

If you’re about to get cramped for a trip, these travel size makeup products will make your life easy and, yes, work just as well as your favs.

20% of all affiliate sales are donated to The National LGBTQ+ Task Force. Thank you for your support!

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Sunshine Skin Tint SPF 30

milk makeup SUNSHINE SKIN TINT spf 30 foundation

If you need a base, choose one that’s easy to control and has SPF in it – kill two birds with one stone, you know? Milk’s Sunshine Skin Tint has SPF 30, but 0 zinc, so you won’t dry out despite the dry air. Instead, it’s filled with hydrating grapeseed, avocado, mandarin, jojoba, and olive oils, as well as squalane to boost your natural moisture.

BUY NOW – $42


Secret Camouflage Correct and Brighten Concealer Duo Stick

laura mercier Secret Camouflage Correct and Brighten Concealer Duo Stick

Laura Mercier comes in clutch, having created a concealer to make last-minute coverups easy. On the Camouflage Correct side, cover up zits, dark spots, and other blemishes; on the Brighten side, take care of dark under eye circles (use an under eye primer first!). Plant-derived squalane hydrates; Laura also included blurring powders and pearls and plant extracts to help blur and brighten.

BUY NOW – $32


DOUBLE TAKE CONTOUR STICK

Uoma double take contour stick with bronzer and highlighter

This double product will make others do a… double take. Yeah, I went there. The contouring Sculpt melts into your skin, allowing for easy, natural application – but it still creates a jawline that could kill. Spin it and follow up with Strobe to give you a glow that radiates, and you have a perfectly-contoured face with one small product.

BUY NOW – $40


Cheekslime Blush + Lip Tint with Plant Collagen

Freck Beauty
Cheekslime Blush + Lip Tint with Plant Collagen

Don’t pack a lip color and blush – who has room for that on a tiny airplane or train ride? Instead, use a cheek-lip tint! We recommend Cheekslime from LGBTQ+-owned Freck, which has elasticity-encouraging plant collagen, brightening carrot root and ginger root extracts, and hydrating glycerin infused in the formula. There are four pigments, so every skin tone has an option that stands out (or remains subtle yet flattering — it’s buildable!).

BUY NOW – $22


Supernatural Stick Highlighter

well people supernatural multi use highlighter

UOMA’s Double Take is great, but if you have room for one more product, bring a small highlighter along to apply anywhere, anytime. W3LL PEOPLE’s highlighter also nourishes your skin using jojoba oil, green tea, and olive oil for a dewy glow. Use one swipe for subtlety, or build up to disco-ball-status – ideal when you only have one product to take you from meeting rooms to rooftops.

BUY NOW – $22


Eyebrow & Eyeliner Compact
CLÉ DE PEAU BEAUTÉ

You can use a double-sided pencil, but why not go the extra mile for a compact that gives you options? (Plus, compacts are great for Tetris.) Use the angled brush for a quick shaping, then sponge and brush on pigments to give you your desired color using the three shades. It also comes with a spoolie to brush it out, so you have voluminous, natural brows in one small container, rather than three colors and a separate spoolie you can’t seem to locate.

BUY NOW – $70


MINI MASCARA 101 

When I can’t put anything else on, mascara is my go-to. It opens my eyes, gives me a little drama, and indicates that I put some effort into an early morning. Mascara 101 is just as good as Better Than Sex, and it comes in a mini container that fits in the corner of your makeup bag or clutch – perfect for both plane and presentation touch-ups.

BUY NOW – $16


dark rum perfume oil.

Malin and goetz dark rum natural perfume oil roll on travel size

You know how sitting for hours can give you a weird smell? Yeah, it’s kind of gross to be sharing air with hundreds of strangers, all of whom smell different. This perfume oil rolls on flawlessly, giving hints of rum mixed with leather and creamy milk. Carry it everywhere, and pull it out during that straight-to-the-presentation Uber ride.

BUY NOW – $32


TANTI BACI EXTREME CREAM MINI LIPSTICK SET

haus labs casa gaga tanti baci mini lipstick collection of five

Different events call for different shades of lipstick, but bringing multiple large containers for only a tiny bit of pigment is irrational. HAUS gives you five mini lipsticks ranging from taupe to scarlet, and they barely take up space in your makeup bag (if you don’t use the one that’s included!). If you realllllly don’t have room, you can still pick your top two that will transition you from dressed-down suit to dressed-up cocktail gown.

BUY NOW – $52.08


Clear Toiletry Bag

Rough Enough Clear Toiletry Bag Makeup

There is nothing more frustrating than having to pull out 20 items from a makeup bag to find that one damn product. Stop seeing red and choose a cosmetic bag that’s clear (which are currently super trendy), giving you the ability to see exactly where your mascara is hiding. Your seat neighbor will appreciate you not using the entire table during your search.

BUY NOW – $28.12

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What mini makeup products do you have in your personal travel kit? Tips for making it easier to pack? Share your secrets with us in the comments!


Read More Makeup Articles:

Traveling? Here’s How To Pack Your Makeup and Skincare
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Categories
Makeup

12 Eyebrow Pencils Perfect For Redheads

As someone who used to have fire-truck-colored hair, I know firsthand the difficulty of finding a solid auburn eyebrow pencil. And over the years, I’ve met many like past me who say the same: “where is a goddamn eyebrow pencil for redheads?”

Turns out, there are many out there… you just need to know where to look! I’ve scoured the web and consulted with fellow redheads to find the 12 best eyebrow pencils to pair with your auburn locks.

20% of all affiliate sales are donated to The National LGBTQ+ Task Force. Thank you for your support!

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Brow MVP Ultra Fine Brow Pencil & Styler

FENTY Brow MVP Ultra Fine Brow Pencil & Styler

Fenty is beyond inclusive in its foundation and concealer shades, so it’s only natural that Rihanna would offer 14 different shades in her eyebrow pencil line. Brow MVP is an ultra-fine liner, giving you the ability to outline with precision and mimic natural brow hairs to fill in sparse areas. Hinoki oil is hidden in the ingredients list, but it encourages hair growth – gotta love Rihanna for checking all the boxes.

BUY NOW – $22


Color Icon Brow Pencil

WET n wild color icon brow pencil in auburn

Redheads who don’t want to go too dark, but still want to look subtle, the ginger color of Wet n Wild’s Color Icon eyebrow pencil is for you. At $2.99, it’s super affordable – but 1k+ reviews land it at a 4.3-star rating. Use the thick spoolie for fluffing your brows, then apply the creamy pencil to shape and in sparse spots. Brush the lightweight formula through and let it last all day.

BUY NOW – $2.99


Bushy Brow Pomade Pencil

LIME CRIME Bushy Brow Pomade Pencil

A pomade in a pencil? Yep. Perfect for those with bright red hair, not just casual auburn… or those who simply want bright red eyebrows? Also yep! Lime Crime’s pencil comes in “Valentine,” a bright red shade that has a matte finish to it. The formula also includes vitamin E and sunflower seed oil, which are fantastic for protecting and strengthening strands, respectively. Not super bold? Use the spoolie to buff out your brows and lessen the red impact.

BUY NOW – $15


Insta-Brow Waxy Brow Pencil

SEPHORA COLLECTION insta-brow waxy brow pencil

Take a glance at Sephora’s auburn eyebrow pencil, and it looks more brown than red – like, no red in sight, tbh. But it’s this subtlety that allows for a natural tint to your brows. The color is sheer, so you won’t get huge impact with one swipe – nice if that’s what you’re looking for. It’s super waxy, with glide coming from an entirely-vegan formula that will both structure and condition your brows.

BUY NOW – $12


Brow Stylist Definer Eyebrow Pencil

loreal paris auburn brow pencil

I know I sometimes want super fine lines, both to arch my brows and to fill in sparse areas with hair-like strokes. Enter: L’Oreal’s eyebrow pencil, which has a super fine tip to give you the precision you desire. If you want volume, use the spoolie to diffuse, or keep the lines clean and crisp by simply applying thin and realistic hairs.

BUY NOW – $9.49


BROWKIKI MICRO BROW DEFINING PENCIL

one size BROWKIKI auburn brow pencil

This retractable eyebrow pencil is waterproof for up to 12 hours; cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, AND vegan; and uses carnauba wax to keep them from smudging outside of your defined lines. One/Size also includes a strong helping of vitamin E to help condition and strengthen, so your brows don’t fall out with constant application and removal.

BUY NOW – $19


INSTANT LIFT BROWCILelf eyebrow pencil in auburn

$3… and over 1,000 reviews raving about how well it works? The Instant Lift Brow Pencil from elf is beloved for both its price and its capabilities. The 2-in-1 factor is nice, but what makes this pencil is its formula. Grapeseed oil conditions, strengthens, and shines, while the vitamin E nourishes and stops breakage before it happens.

BUY NOW – $3


Revlon Colorstay Auburn Eyebrow Pencil

revlon colorstay auburn eyebrow pencil

Revlon’s pencil won’t make your brows red, but it will fill in the skin behind and surrounding it to give a hint of auburn. It’s ideal for those who don’t want dyed brows, but still want to emphasize their color. It’s phthalate-free and waterproof, lasting up to 24 hours with its combo of waxes and oil. But beware: they do use two types of parabens.

BUY NOW – $11.29


Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil

HOURGLASS Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil

We don’t need to tell you how much we love multi-use products – lip and cheek tints, anybody? – which is why we absolutely love Hourglass’ Sculpting Pencil. It’s a 3-in-1, boasting the benefits of a powder, pencil, and wax all in one, with ingredients like synthetic wax paired with iron oxides and hydrogenated oils. The slant tip allows for precision outlining, which can then be filled in with the flat edge. Brush it out with the spoolie to finish your look.

BUY NOW – $37


ARTIST COLOR PENCIL

makeup forever eyeliner, eyebrow, and lip liner pencil in tangerine for redheads

Bright redheads who want to scream about their color, this brow pencil is for you. It comes in subtle auburn, of course, but that Tangerine. That Full Red. Countless Crimson. Those colors that are loud and proud, fitting anything from orange to burgundy. The best part about this pencil: it’s also made for your eyes and lips, making it a 3-in-1. We can’t get enough.

BUY NOW – $22


AUBURN EYEBROW PENCIL

PALLADIO brow pencil in auburn

This pencil is filled with oils that other pencils lack. For example, it has castor oil to nourish; jojoba oil to condition and soften; and cottonseed oil to provide an abundance of vitamin E and fatty acids, promoting repairing and strength. While Auburn isn’t vegan, the pencil is cruelty- and gluten-free.

BUY NOW – $6.99


Pro-cision Micro Slim Brow Pencil

Pro-cision Micro Slim Brow Pencil IN AUBURN

J.Cat calls their eyeliner pencil the “Pro-cision” brow pencil. But fear not – it’s not because it’s for pros, it’s because it will make you look like a pro. Like Fenty’s Brow MVP, J.Cat uses a micro-fine tip for precision and hair-like strokes in patchy areas. Unlike Rihanna’s option, it comes with a spoolie at the opposite end, so you can bush up your brows. After all, do feathered brows ever go out of style? 

BUY NOW – $5.99

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Which eyebrow pencil for you redheads is your favorite? Tell us in the comments!


Read More Makeup Articles:

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Categories
Makeup

These 20 Better Than Sex Mascara Dupes Will Send Your Lashes Soaring

Too Faced’s Better Than Sex mascara has been hailed as the best mascara on the market. Sometimes, however, you need back-ups in your makeup arsenal. And no, I’m not talking about more tubes of Better Than Sex — I’m talking mascara dupes that are just as good as, or even better than, the classic.

If this is something you’re looking for too, I’ve chosen 20 Better Than Sex mascara dupes that will lift your lashes and give you the ultimate doe-eyed look.

20% of all affiliate sales are donated to The National LGBTQ+ Task Force. Thank you for your support!

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Big Mood Mega Volume & Lifting Mascara

Big Mood Mega Volume & Lifting Mascara, a better than sex dupe

Get ready for all eyes on you with this Big Mood Mega Volume & Lifting Mascara! This volumizing and lifting pick gives you big, bold lashes sure to turn heads. The gentle formula is infused with jojoba wax, and it’s designed with a unique brush, making this Better Than Sex dupe easy to apply for all-day wear. Plus, it’s smudge and flake-resistant! You’re sure to achieve baddie lashes, giving you confidence that your lashes look luxe.

BUY NOW – $8


They’re Real! Lengthening Mascara

benefit cosmetics they're real! mascara

If you’re not talking about the classic Better Than Sex, you’re probably talking about They’re Real! from Benefit Cosmetics – which might as well be a dupe, despite its classic status. And, yeah, you’ll have trouble convincing others that you’re not wearing fake lashes. We love how this mascara curls, adding extra definition with the help of the domed-tip brush, which also separates lashes and stops clumping.

BUY NOW – $27


Roller Lash Curling & Lifting Mascara (Mini)

Roller Lash Curling & Lifting Mascara  mini

Roller Lash acts as exactly as the name implies: a roller for your lashes. (Duh.) The brush has a patent-pending “Hook ‘N Roll” brush which is meant to capture your teeny, tiniest lashes and bring curl and volume to them. With B5 and serine, which help soften and strengthen lashes, you’ll have 12 hours of making all those around you swoon, one blink at a time.

BUY NOW – $14


Voluminous Lash Paradise Waterproof Mascara

l'oreal mascara dupe for better than sex

Sensitive eyes can also have large, pumped-up lashes without feeling itchy and bothered. L’Oreal’s mascara provides volume and length and is waterproof, so you can know that your makeup will stay put no matter what you do to your eyes. Beeswax makes the formula glide and protects sensitive eyelids.

BUY NOW – $7.99


On Point Mascara with Hemp

pur cosmetics hemp mascara

You know it’s a PUR product because it’s a 4-in-1: this mascara defines, lengthens, nourishes, and protects from pollution. The formula is ridiculously gentle, with ingredients like aloe and sunflower seed oil soothing to the nth degree. Biotin conditions and strengthens, while Alteromonas Ferment Extract (found in the deep sea) protects lashes from environmental stressors. The hemp helps with preventing premature fallout and breakage, plus nourishing the skin around the lash line.

BUY NOW – $22


Come Hell or High Water Volumizing Tubing Mascara (Mini)

COME HELL OR HIGH WATER MASCARA

Come Hell or High Water will stay on your lashes… come hell or high water. This mascara does it all thanks to its ingredients, which help to curl, lengthen, and volumize all at once. Two percent argan oil conditions, while caliray’s Tubing Technology provides roll-off removal and a wax mix creates long-wearing lift. Because of the technology, the mascara is totally smudge-proof – but it comes off with warm water and a lil lash massage, no pulling hairs out required.

BUY NOW – $13


Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara

lash princess false lash effect mascara

If you’re looking for a mascara that will give you dramatic, false-lash-esque fluttering, look no further than the Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara. This iconic mascara has a fiber brush that provides voluminous lashes with just a few strokes, giving you insane length and volume that will make your eyes pop. The best part: it’s cruelty-free and ophthalmologically tested, so you can feel good about and when wearing it. It’s also formulated without alcohol, oil, parabens, or fragrances, so it’s gentle on the eyes.

BUY NOW – $4.99


RISE Lifting + Lengthening Mascara (Mini)

milk makeup rise mascara - mini

We love Milk Makeup, but nope, we’re not including their Kush mascara – we pride ourselves on our 4+-star average ratings, after all. Their Rise Mascara, however, does fall under the 4+ category, and it’s all due to its lash-lift properties. Milk’s Lash Wrap Technology is created from four vegan waxes for hold, as well as monoi oil and marigold extract for strengthening and conditioning. What I’m implying: there’s no crunchy curling here, just flawless, fluttery lashes.

BUY NOW – $14


Honest Beauty Extreme Length Mascara + Lash Primer

honest beauty mascara, a better than sex dupe

Honest’s mascara is one of the best Better Than Sex dupes courtesy of its 2-in-1 feature. Both a lengthening mascara and a primer, you receive the ultimate boost thanks to prep and execution in one tube. Made with jojoba esters, a form of jojoba oil, the formula is soft and gentle while doing the ultimate work.

BUY NOW – $17.99


The Falsies Lash Lift

Maybelline The Falsies Lash Lift

Maybelline’s mascara is less than $10, and it might just be the best Amazon dupe on this list, tbh. I say this because it does everything Better Than Sex claims to do – it lifts, lengthens, volumizes, and curls – is a fraction of the price, lasts all day, and can be washed off with just a lil micellar water. The brush separates and coats each individual lash, so there’s no clumping. It’s also flake- and smudge-proof. Can your Better Than Sex dupe do that?

BUY NOW – $8.75


ON THE RISE VOLUME LIFTSCARA

nyx better than sex mascara dupe

Sick of mascaras that claim to give you that ultimate, fully-black gaze, only to find it lifts… without that striking black? Same. NYX knows this, which is why their mascara uses a highly-pigmented matte black formula (which is also vegan!). The brush head lifts and lengthens to the highest of heights thanks to its hourglass-round shape, an innovative way to create your most flattering lashes.

BUY NOW – $12


Mile High Club™ Volume and Length Mascara

mile high mascara better than sex dupe

No smudging. No flaking. No running. No BS in general. Aside from the name being perfect for a mascara that boasts lift, it has great ingredients to support lash health and soothe sensitive eyes. Peach leaf extract and castor oil stop breakage and condition, while trehalose strengthens each lash. The result: mile high lashes.

BUY NOW – $26


Vegan Collagen Fluffy Lash Thickening & Lengthening Mascara

Vegan Collagen Fluffy Lash Thickening & Lengthening Mascara, a better than sex dupe

Looking for a vegan mascara that will give you full, fluffy lashes? Infused with hydrating vegan collagen and plant-based fibers, this clean, 100% vegan mascara delivers full, fluffy lashes with a glossy authentic black finish. The unique twisted Fluff It Up Brush rolls the nourishing formula onto every lash while separating them for a soft, fluttery effect. Ophthalmologist-tested and safe for contact wearers, this Better Than Sex mascara dupe is sure to become your new favorite!

BUY NOW – $12


Killer Curves Curling Mascara

PHYSICIANS FORMULA KILLER CURVES MASCARA

Physicians Formula doesn’t treat your face anything but gently, with the utmost care and skin-loving ingredients. In their dermatologist- and ophthalmologist-tested mascara (perfect for eyes that can barely handle a single swipe), enjoy volumizing collagen, nourishing provitamin B5, and a variety of peptides and amino acids to encourage strong, healthy, luscious lashes. The brush has fibers that grip onto each lash, so you get length and curl at the same time.

BUY NOW – $8.98


SAIE MASCARA 101

saie mascara 101 better than sex dupe

SAIE’s site explains why every ingredient is necessary in their products, and their mascara is no exception. Ingredients include shea butter to condition and nourish and beeswax to thicken. Carnuaba wax helps to hold lashes in place, without flattening throughout the day, while still allowing for flexibility (no one likes lashes that don’t move, it just looks unnatural). All together, you have a buildable mascara that coats every lash equally and elegantly.

BUY NOW – $25


big ego™ vegan mascara

tarte big ego mascara

If your ego is big (which it should be – you’re fab), you need lashes that are equally as large. tarte’s big ego vegan mascara lifts, lengthens, and volumizes for up to 16 hours without flaking or smudging (glycerin is hydrating, so your lashes won’t dry out). You also won’t be bothered with each flutter, with the nourishing babassu and vitamin B5 for sensitive eyes. Thicken up with hydroxyethylcellulose & sunflower seed wax. Now this dupe is absolutely Better Than Sex.

BUY NOW – $23


Unlashed Volume & Curl Mascara (Mini)

unlashed curling mascara

You’re looking at this brush and going “what in the fun-house-mirror hell…?” I know, because I did the same thing. But the design is actually quite brilliant! With its shape, this mascara is able to touch upon every lash and give each one the love, lift, volume, and curl it deserves – all without awkward twisting of the wrist. Vitamin E conditions, while peach leaf and licorice root extracts help to moisturize the lashes.

BUY NOW – $12


Buxom Lash Volumizing Mascara

Buxom Lash Volumizing Mascara

Looking for a volumizing mascara that will coat your lashes minus the clumps? The hourglass-shaped brush contains dense, molded bristles define even the daintiest lashes, giving ultra length, definition, and curl. Plus, it delivers 3x the volume in a single stroke – giving you ultra-black lashes that look amazing. Infused with Vitamin E and antioxidants to help nourish and condition your lashes, this mascara is also ophthalmologist-tested – making it safe for even the most sensitive eyes.

BUY NOW – $23


Perfect Strokes Universal Volumizing Mascara

RARE BEAUTY mascara, a better than sex dupe

Ms. Gomez, you’re giving Better Than Sex a run for its mascara money with your dupe. Wear this mascara like a second skin – one that does it all, like lift, lengthen, volumize, and curl. The secret to its power: carnauba wax for hold, plus sunflower seed oil for shine and strength, olive oil for nourishment, and castor oil for coddling the smallest and weakest of lashes.

BUY NOW – $20


The Mascara

jones road the mascara

THE Mascara. It’s a bold name, kind of a bold claim. But many reviewers declare that it delivers! Though not a C-shape, the curled wand touches upon every lash, from big to baby, for a lifting and volumizing look. It’s a buildable formula – swipe on one coat of the hydrating sodium-hyaluronate-, vitamin-E-and-B5-, glycerin-filled formula for a subtle look, or multiple layers for ultimate drama.

BUY NOW – $26

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Which Better Than Sex mascara dupe do you recommend? Tell us in the comments!


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Categories
Skin

10 Under Eye Primers That Will Prep You For Makeup – And Wake You Up

Under eye primers are the best, and I’m here to tell you why.

Maybe you’ve just gone through a breakup and your eyes are irritated and red from continuously wiping tears away (lol, same, and let’s not talk about all that black mascara pooling in the creases). 

Or perhaps it’s allergy season, and your eyes are itchy, and suddenly your under eye skin is sensitive to the touch and looking puffy af.

Or maybe you didn’t sleep (lol, also me) and those dark circles are a little unsightly (sorry)… and you have a huge presentation in a few hours that requires you to look bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.

 

Whatever the case may be, you need under eye primers to help soothe, de-puff, and maybe cover the skin that is rarely taken care of (unless you have a dedicated eye cream in your skincare routine).

New to this game? Don’t worry – we’ve put together a list of the 10 best under eye primers that will best prep you for the days ahead – breakups, allergies, and all-nighters be damned.

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Hydro Grip Eye Primer

EYE PRIMER MILK MAKEUP

Milk Makeup is one of my fav brands, and their eye primer doesn’t just help with eyeshadow – it also helps battle under eye problems, like concealer that keeps migrating down your face. In fact, 94% said it helped concealer grip beneath the eyes. A huge shout out to the aloe water and niacinamide for the soothing hydration, blue agave extract for helping to lock in makeup, hyaluronic acid to keep moisture in, and hemp-derived cannabis seed extract for keeping the under eye area happy. We truly couldn’t look like this without you.

BUY NOW – $25


Vitamin Enriched Eye Base Primer & Moisturizer

bobbi brown eye base primer

Bobbi Brown is always worth buying. The formula includes hyaluronic acid and shea butter to moisturize, vitamins B3 and C to brighten dark circles immediately and over time, vitamin A to smooth, and caffeine to tame puffiness. Yeah, it’s one of the pricier options, but there’s a reason everyone and their mother owns products by Bobbi Brown: you’ll never regret the luxury of them.

BUY NOW – $58


Bright Fix Eye Brightener

fenty beauty brightening under eye primer and concealer

Rihanna extends her foundation range into her under eye range, offering 16 different shades for any under eyes that need a lil help. It’s crease-, humidity-, and sweat-resistant, so no matter what you do, your under eyes will grasp onto any makeup you’ve applied beneath your lash line. Thank jojoba oil and sodium hyaluronate for giving you that moisture and conditioning your sensitive skin desperately needs.

BUY NOW – $26


Hydrabeam Brightening + Hydrating Under Eye Concealer

Hydrabeam Brightening + Hydrating Under Eye Concealer by saie

It’s not 16, but nine shades for an under eye primer is still pretty damn nice – and more than most offer. Olive-derived squalane and plant-derived glycerin work together to give you the hydration component, soothing that puffiness and delicate skin. Next, cucumber extract’s AHAs are gentle enough to provide light exfoliation and antioxidants. And finally, tomato extract gives that extra oomph by plumping and brightening, so you look wide awake on no sleep.

BUY NOW – $26


Full Night’s Sleep Cooling Blurring Undereye Balm

rem under eye balm

Do you ever see Ariana Grande looking tired? I thought not – she always has that doe-eyed, I-got-12-hours-of-sleep look instead. Bless her heart, she took that magic and put it in a balm, so you, too, can look revitalized after morning application. Just drench those under eyes in this formula, which consists of plumping mushrooms, hydrating glycerin, and de-puffing caffeine.

BUY NOW – $22


Smashbox X Becca Under Eye Brightening Corrector

Smashbox X Becca Under Eye Brightening Corrector

We love Smashbox at QUILL (did you read Marissa’s review of their Always On liquid lipstick? She smashed it), and people love the BECCA under eye brightening corrector. Rather than just cover them, the apricot and peach tints neutralize the blue in dark circles, while backlight technology (which includes light-reflecting illuminators) brings attention away from the darkness. Add in vitamin E to protect, and your dark circles are gone without pounds of concealer.

BUY NOW – $33


Sunshine Under Eye Brightening Light Coverage Concealer

Sunshine Under Eye Brightening Light Coverage Concealer

It’s not exactly shocking that Milk’s Sunshine ALSO made this list, what with its 4.4-star average rating and delightful ingredients, giving you coverage without caking. It does this with vitamin C, to help brighten; plant-derived squalane and hyaluronic acid to hydrate, then lock in moisture; and light-reflecting brightening powders (aka magic) that illuminate the under eyes, so those dark circles go into hiding.

BUY NOW – $28


Peeper Perfect Under-Eye Concealer

winky lux peeper perfect under eye brightener

Concealers should never be obvious – they’re supposed to conceal, right? Yet, somehow, so many concealers are… obvious. Not the case with Winky Lux, which offers full-coverage while blending in seamlessly with nine shade options. Ingredients include the elasticity-encouraging collagen, moisture-maintaining hyaluronic acid, and protective vitamin E – giving that sensitive skin a base it can enjoy.

BUY NOW – $16


+C Vit UnderEye Brightener

+C Vit UnderEye Brightener BY PIXI

Pixi’s primer relies on vitamin C to brighten those under eyes – and it works, so we’re not about to complain. This formula contains brightening licorice extract and plenty of extra citric acids, giving you bright eyes that CAN be bought. But don’t worry about dryness – hydrating glycerin and sea buckthorn oil totally nourish the under eye, so you won’t be scratching and rubbing your eyes from discomfort.

BUY NOW – $16


The Eyelighter Concentrate

THE EYELIGHTER by beautybio

Like Bobbi’s, this under eye primer is a bit of a splurge – but it’s well worth it. On top of being a primer, this under eye product also acts as a serum, providing 3-in-1 properties. Not only does this de-puff; it also smooths over lines and brightens any darkness hanging around. Plant-powered retinol prides vitamin A and exfoliation without irritation, with an assist from the ultra hydrating hyaluronic acid. Vitamin C helps brighten and firm as well, so you’re protected on all fronts after a night of tossing and turning.

BUY NOW – $58

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What under eye primers work best for you? Share with us below!


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Categories
Makeup

13 All-In-One Makeup Palettes For Easy Application

An all-in-one makeup palette is indispensable; after all, bringing five different products along with you is unrealistic, especially if they aren’t travel size. Face palettes are super popular now, but with so many options, it can be hard to find one that does everything you need. 

But no more of that searching high and low! Here at QUILL, we believe in making it easy to find all-in-one makeup products, like face palettes. So, we’ve put together a collection of 13 that will give you a glow, flush, or simply neutralize your face – whatever you need, you’ll find here!

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Clay Play Face Shaping Palette II

tarte clay play face palette ii

tarte truly outdid themselves with their Clay Play Face Shaping Palette. It’s massive, coming with everything you need: nine eyeshadows, blush, bronzer, and highlighter all fit within one palette. Each powder is infused with Amazonian clay to help with sebum control, so you don’t have to worry about looking oily. It’s not travel-size, so don’t expect to slip it into your purse for touch-ups. However, if you have the space, it’s a good investment for your makeup drawer!

BUY NOW – $45


Ambient Lighting Edit Unlocked Face Palette

Ambient Lighting Edit Unlocked Face Palette

Ah, yes, the height of luxury – right at Sephora. This all in one face palette uses satin finishes to give you a dewy, radiant look without the need for shimmer and sparkle. It contains a blush, bronzer, and highlighting powders to give your face the ultimate assist in any lighting. None of that “it looked so good in the mirror, and then I stepped outside!” shit – ANYWHERE is That Mirror using this face palette.

BUY NOW – $85


Butter Dream Team Palette

Butter Dream Team Palette

If it’s from Physicians Formula, you know it’s good for ya – and I’m not just saying that for the rhyme. In the Butter Dream Team Palette, the buttery powders are infused with murumuru, cupuaçu, and tucuma butters to give you the softest, most comfortable application; when on, your skin will revel in the conditioning it receives. Enjoy two bronzers, two blushes, one highlighter, and one face powder to dab across your face for an even, cohesive look.

BUY NOW – $19.99


9021-Bungalow! Eye & Cheek Palette

9021-Bungalow! Eye & Cheek Palette

As someone who lives in California, the name of this stood out to me. Then I looked at what was included, and I knew I would be sold if I didn’t have that already-there Cali glow (#humblebrag, #ilovemystate). The powders are universal – brush them on wherever for the glow you desire – with fun names, like Poolside Posh and Cabana Bae. SO California, and I love it.

BUY NOW – $25


All-in-One Face, Lip & Eye Makeup Palette

dior All-in-One Face, Lip & Eye Makeup Palette

It’s Dior, it’s dynamite, it’s daring, it’s delicious, it’s the dream. $115 seems pricey, but if you have the budget, this is the all-in-one palette to splurge on. The limited edition palette (get it now!) comes with blush, eyeshadow, bronzer, and highlighter, like most palettes. Unlike most palettes, it also comes with four lip shades, so you can go from bare-faced to glam with one product. Housed in a couture case, you’ll feel every bit elite whenever you bring it with you for application.

BUY NOW – $115


STUDIO FIX CONCEAL AND CORRECT MAKEUP PALETTE

STUDIO FIX CONCEAL AND CORRECT PALETTE

Unlike most of the face palettes on this list, MAC’s palette is filled with concealers to correct even the patchiest, zit-tiest skin out there. There are six different palettes ranging from light to extra deep, so no one has to feel resigned to a shade that kiiiiinda works with their skin tone. On top of four concealers, there are two correctors for the most even skin.

BUY NOW – $37


Day-To-Night All-In-One Compact Palette, Created for Macy’s

macy's exclusive day to night all in one face palette

THIS is the all-in-one you want to bring on long trips. If you’re in need of options, Macy’s Day-to-Night face palette-slash-case is exactly what your but-what-do-I-wear!? mind needs to be at ease. With 24 versatile eyeshadow pans, 27 lip gloss options (twenty! seven!), a blush, a highlighter, and a bronzer, your entire look (or five) sits within a three-tier case. Go from bed to breakfast, conference meeting to happy hour, then dinner to club within minutes. 

BUY NOW – $30


4-in-1 Skin-Perfecting Powders Face Palette

PUR 4-in-1 Skin-Perfecting Powders Face Palette

It wouldn’t be PÜR if it didn’t come as a 4-in-1, right? Their Perfecting Powders Face Palette comes in three four-pan palettes: fair-light, medium-tan, and dark-deep. In the palette, you’ll find bronzer, blush, highlighter, and setting powder (which doesn’t come in most palettes, as you’ll see!). Inside: PÜR’s Energy Complex, which is filled with ingredients like green tea, ginseng, and vitamin B to fight aging and give you a glow.

BUY NOW – $34


Ambient Lighting Edit Universe Unlocked Face Palette

Ambient Lighting Edit Universe Unlocked Face Palette

While most of these powders have shimmer, Hourglass’ Pro Face Palette is the grown-up edition with its smooth, creamy, satin options. It comes in five shades of the brand’s Ambient Lighting Powder, which mimics the most flattering lighting to give you a camera-ready face. Featuring a bronzer, strobing powder, two blushes, and finishing powder, prepare for a glam-yet-natural finish that captures everyone’s attention.

BUY NOW – $80


Correct and Perfect All-In-One Color Correcting Palette

stila Correct and Perfect All-In-One Color Correcting Palette

Thank you stila for giving us a color corrector palette that also comes with shades to accent your features – not just hide. Whether you have acne, dark circles, red splotches, hyperpigmentation, or grey patches, this palette will give you natural, even-looking skin. Each pan is a cream with the exception of the purple powder, meant for brightening yellow undertones. It also has a delicious formula, filled with vitamins A, C, and E, as well as a bio-mineral complex for anti-aging, minimizing pores, and moisturizing without triggering oil.

 

BUY NOW – $45


Primrose All In One Face & Eye Shadow Palette

anastasia beverly hills Primrose All In One Face & Eye Shadow Palette

Primrose is a small palette that manages to fit everything you need for a full face of makeup. Grapefruit and Saddle are your main squeezes (pun intended) – large pans of blush to keep those cheeks extra rosy. There are four shimmery eyeshadows in pink and champagne colors, so your eyes will pop, plus matte powders to help contour. The shades are buttery, giving a smooth application with either a brush or your fingers – perfect for on-the-go!

BUY NOW – $55


Face Bento Cream Bronzer, Powder Blush & Highlighter Sculpting Trio

 

KAJA PLAY BENTO

This is the perfect palette for on-the-go application, because each piece of the bento-box replica – which comes with pressed powder blush and highlighter, as well as a cream bronzer – allows for finger application. Correct: no brush necessary here. Simply throw it in your bag and give yourself touch-ups whenever necessary. We recommend carrying around wipes if you won’t be near sinks, just so you don’t rub off makeup onto everything you touch.

BUY NOW – $28


All-Inclusive Eye, Cheek & Face Palette

All-Inclusive Eye, Cheek & Face Palette

Everything you need is included in this eye-cheek-overall-face palette, including highlighter, bronzer, two blushes, and three shadows. Ultimately, you’ll have a natural glow packed in one rectangle. The powders are buildable, so you can go from slight sheen to major intensity. It’s “Inclusive” for all skin tones, though we’d be lying if we said it’s completely acceptable to call one palette “Inclusive” in 2022 when you don’t offer a variety of shades. Come on now, Milani.

BUY NOW – $11.89

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Which all-in-one makeup palettes are best for your skin tone? Any we missed? Tell us below!


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12 Hoola Bronzer Dupes To Give You Glow
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Categories
Reviews

I Tried Out All Of Guide Beauty’s Products – Here’s My Review

With my years of medications for cystic fibrosis, epilepsy, and bipolar disorder, I have unfortunately developed tardive dyskinesia. In other words, my hands shake like no other; so, holding makeup and applying my essentials can be real f*cking difficult. Enter: Guide Beauty and their products made for people with disabilities – like my own tardive dyskinesia.

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by GUIDE BEAUTY (@guidebeautycosmetics)

I stumbled across Guide Beauty when looking for disability-friendly makeup products. The brand was one of the first to pop up, and I was immediately taken by how universal its design is. It solves so many struggles when it comes to applying the basics.

I added to cart, tagged them in my order, and two weeks later: my own kit of products came in.

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About Guide Beauty

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by GUIDE BEAUTY (@guidebeautycosmetics)

Guide Beauty was founded when superstar makeup artist and beauty educator Terri Bryant was diagnosed with Parkinson’s. She began living what her friends and clients had said – that application was hard, especially when dealing with shaking hands and a lack of precision.

Guide was Bryant’s solution: a beauty brand that made makeup accessible to everyone.

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by GUIDE BEAUTY (@guidebeautycosmetics)

Listening to the most pressing issues, Bryant and her team worked hard to come up with an ergonomic design for holding, making application a breeze. At the same time, she and her team worked tirelessly to create cruelty-free, vegan, and clean formulas. None of that harsh, toxic s*it on an ableist wand – just accessible beauty at its finest.

The result of active listening: a mascara wand that has grips and a jet-black formula; a brow gel that fills in and shapes effortlessly with an easy-to-hold handle; and an eyeliner combo, consisting of gel in a pot and an ergonomic applicator. (Hard to describe, I’ll show you below!)


My Review of Guide Beauty

Hey, what up, I’m Tess, and my body sucks.

tess sending peace sign to camera without makeup on

Therefore, this is my brutally honest review of Guide Beauty and its products. I ordered every single product, even though I really only needed the eyeliner applicator. You know, for science, definitely not because I’m obsessed with supporting brands that believe in accessibility.

The packaging is GORGEOUS, and it comes with a cute note from Terri!letter from guide beauty's terri bryant

I love the look of each product. The color is rich, and the hardware is a gorgeous complement. It doesn’t feel gaudy, instead looking chic and sleek.

The first thing I tried: the Guide Beauty Eyeliner Duo.

The pot is cute, and the black is super pigmented. However, it catches the light, so I know it won’t be oddly matte against my lids. The applicator is a little odd and almost intimidating, but Guide is thorough in their instructions.

applicator of guide beauty's eyeliner applicator applicator of guide beauty's eyeliner applicator

So, I glided my applicator through the gel, grasped it, and drew a line… with ease? As if my hands didn’t shake??

The result: a highly-pigmented, jet-black, strong line and cute wing. And no awkward irritation or build-up! It’s just a perfect line without excess gel or mistakes you can’t fix.tess wearing eyeliner on one eye

Happy with the result, I moved on to my brows.

I have pretty iffy brows, ruined by years of filling in, yanking, rinsing and repeating every day. They’re fairly strong closest to my nose, but they taper out weakly at the ends. Because of this, I’m always looking for good brow gels.

The handle for Guide Beauty’s brow gel has a protruding handle, giving you a natural space to rest your fingers and grip the applicator.

brow moment guide beauty review

I like how I don’t have to awkwardly twist my wrist in order to fill in both brows (I’m not ambidextrous). The handle makes it easy to grasp the brush and give yourself an even coat.

I can’t think of the last time a brow gel looked this good on me, but I’m obsessed. I have arches! I have strong eyebrows from nose to temples! I have color, so you don’t see peeks of skin! The formula is soft and easy to wipe should you get a little too crazy with the filling.

tess with guide beauty brow moment on one eyebrow

Finally: Guide’s mascara!

The color is pitch black, which I love, because my lashes are so light. I’m always wanting a doe-eyed look courtesy of my mascara, and few succeed. Guide, however? Their mascara is flawless. I have fairly sensitive eyes, and this mascara didn’t bother me one bit – even when I accidentally blinked some into my eyes.

Put it all together, and this is the final look!

tess full face of makeup


My Summary of Guide

Even if you’re perfectly able, you will love Guide Beauty’s products. Like I said, I didn’t need them for my lashes or brows, yet I don’t think I’ll ever find a more comfortable brand. The products are convenient, the formula is solid, and you’re supporting an amazing cause.

I can’t refrain: I give Guide Beauty’s kit a 10/10, because the price tag is absolutely worth it. Can’t recommend enough. I love it, and you will too. Thanks, Terri, for creating a product that makes my eyelids look flawless again. Beyond grateful.

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I hope you liked my review of Guide Beauty! Have you tried Guide? What are your thoughts? Share below!


Read More Makeup Reviews:

I Tried Machine Gun Kelly’s UN/DN LAQR – Here Are My Thoughts
Fluide’s “Superneutrals” Has Changed My Mind On Liquid Lipstick – Here’s My Review
Categories
Makeup Profiles

MOXIE Nail Varnish’s Founder Has Just That

If you’re looking to purchase from a company dedicated to bettering the world, let me introduce you to MOXIE Nail Varnish.

Actually, no, let me introduce you to the heartbeat of MOXIE: Mary Ann “EM” Kilgore, who formed MOXIE Nail Varnish with her husband, Hugh.

It was actually Hugh who emailed me, mentioning that they were a gender-neutral nail lacquer brand, and they loved what QUILL was doing, and would we want to talk?

The answer was an immediate yes. After a 45-minute introductory call, EM and I scheduled a time to really talk. 

When the day came for our conversation, I was under a raincloud. There were bugs in my room that maintenance had yet to deal with; my boyfriend had just broken up with me; I was in the middle of medication changes for my bipolar.

But when EM said hello and asked about People With Periods, prompting us to talk about taking first steps in our respective businesses, my spirits quickly lifted. I walked away 40 minutes later feeling uplifted and inspired.

And to say “MOXIE” had a new meaning to me after our conversation? Well, that’s an understatement. Here’s why.

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To keep things vague at her request, EM Kilgore witnessed adversity throughout her childhood, threading deep compassion and empathy throughout her identity.

mary ann "em" kilgore, founder of moxie nail varnish

So, when it came time to decide on which direction EM and Hugh wanted to take MOXIE Nail Varnish in, the Kilgore’s decided the philanthropic route was for them. It was inspired by her childhood and giving back in the ways she couldn’t then. 

“Before I became a manicurist, I did hair part time while working in corporate,” EM explains, laying out her beauty industry experience for me. “In the different companies that I worked in, I would use my haircutting skills to raise money during the holidays for different charities. I would offer haircuts for $10 to all of the employees and their families, and the money would go to local organizations.”

When EM began MOXIE Nail Varnish, she wanted to carry over her philanthropic spirit. So, “each month, a new influencer collab or special product is dedicated to a community cause. Currently, we contribute to 7 organizations,” EM says.

For example: in October – right before we spoke – they collaborated with a fellow MOXIE lover to create a pink lacquer for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, donating 30% of proceeds to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

“We have influencer Collabs where the influencer has an opportunity to actually create their own nail polish with a kit that I ship to them. We imprint their name directly on the bottle alongside MOXIE Nail Varnish. (October’s influencer was Jens_Ten; the varnish is called JEN.)

Another unique way MOXIE gives back: offering commission to their collaborators. For example, one woman wanted a Royal Purple lacquer with glitter. EM chose microfine glitter (it comes off the nails easier than your standard glitter), titled the deep purple “ROYAL!,” and offered the collaborator commission for three months. And, at a collaborator’s request, they’ll donate the commission to the collaborator’s nonprofit of choice instead. 

No matter what, MOXIE is about giving back to people, 100%. “It is an honor to work with these awesome artists,” she gushes. “The goal is for everyone to see themselves in the way the product is presented.”


And EM Kilgore is dedicated to making sure everyone has a product that works for them, which is why the swatch team from social media is diverse in itself.

This way, they receive feedback on what colors look best on specific skin tones, as well as what colors are universal. “We can use nail polish – my passion – as a playground for everyone to feel valued, included, and respected,” she tells me. “[That’s why] I am passionate about this brand.”

The best part: you don’t have to wait a year before their next color hits the market, because they make their own nail polish in their Orange County, California manufacturing facility. Aka, when EM is inspired, “MOXIE Nail Varnish can bring new colors to our fans quite quickly.” This is another reason why fans and swatch team members are so involved in the process – what needs to be (or is highly requested) on the market is available in a short period of time.

em kilgore choosing colors for moxie's next polish

While they did just release their first seasonal collection as an experiment driven by Nick, a member of their swatch team – “it’s an eight-shade Fall/Holiday array of shimmery brights, which can actually be worn year-round and fit in just perfectly with any season and person,” she says excitedly – EM is adamant that colors stay available. Because of this, there are currently 55 colors available, not including treatments. EM crafts every color herself.

The inspiration is versatile. “Our signature color is MOXIE!, an off-black with just a tiny touch of shimmer; that was inspired by a Tesla car,” EM laughs. And while, yes, they look at Pantone, too, true inspiration comes from the outside world.

“We really try to come up with new and different colors that aren’t focused on a particular season or trend, but rather by architecture, nature and different textiles.” And again, they also ask fans to request specific colors if they can’t find the specific shade they’d like to swipe on.

I’ve browsed the site multiple times, and I love every color I see. But as I browse it now, looking through the various blues and reds, I find myself drawn to bright orange FREEDOM. My True Colors Personality type is Orange, representing creativity; spontaneity; an aversion to authority; and bold.

I quietly make a mental note to mention this to EM.


MOXIE labels itself as a gender neutral brand.

moxie nail varnish logo with "colors for humankind" below

We’ve written about these – and I’ve reviewed Fluide’s Be Bold Nail Trio and MGK’s UN/DN LAQR – so how had I not heard of MOXIE in the first place?

Turns out, they started right when QUILL did, and they’re still growing in the gender neutral space (again, like QUILL). EM wanted to make sure that it was branded as for all, because in her earlier days as a manicurist, she noticed that only women-identifying individuals would come in to have their nails done.

“I made it a point to market my services to everyone, because everyone should enjoy manis and pedis,” EM says. “I feel that groomed nails are important, regardless of gender.”

EM notes that skincare lines are becoming better at marketing to men, now, by adding color correction items to men’s lines. While not outright lipstick and contour kits, it’s a step in the right direction. “I love the idea of anyone waking up and touching up a little of this or a little of that to put their best self forward,” she says. But, “why leave the nails out of the process?”

moxie nail polish in periwinkle

She understands that polish can be scary. While makeup can quickly be wiped off, nail polish is there – it’s a commitment. So, MOXIE offers BUFF!. “It’s a transparent tinted nail treatment with a low level of shine,” she explains. With one swipe, it covers the entire nail, giving it a healthier-yet-still-natural look. 

“BUFF! is a simple introduction to anyone wanting to extend grooming to their nails,” she says. I mention that men must love it – she says yes, but reminds me that it’s for everyone. “The great thing is that people who normally don’t wear polish will get introduced to the notion of swiping something on their nails.” She pauses, eyes widening and smile growing. “Maybe the next step will be full-on red polish!” she exclaims.

Something tells me there are smaller steps in between a natural look and full-on red, but I like where EM is going with this.


Ultimately, “I am so excited to see how thinking has evolved in the past few years and how the world has become,” EM Kilgore says, as we wrap up our interview.

“We’re so much more open to new ideas in fashion, self-care, and self-expression. And I am so excited that MOXIE Nail Varnish can be a part of this evolution.”

MOXIE NAIL VARNISH IN ROYAL BLUE

I ask where she’s hoping the nail industry will go next. She takes a moment to think. “​​I look at nail polish as a medium to express one’s style. … I would love to see polished nails become a natural part of creating a look for the day, or to even be a part of total grooming for everyone.”

But for EM, it all comes back to philanthropy. “There are so many things that we’ve been touched by,” she says, and she wants to touch upon all of them through MOXIE.

Why? I ask. What about it makes it so important to her to give back?

“It feels so good. It feels right. I mean, what’s the driver?”

She smiles and shrugs.

“It feels right.”


Thank you to EM Kilgore for this interview. Find MOXIE Nail Varnish at their website, or on their Instagram.

Categories
Makeup

Youth And The Beauty Binary: An In-Depth Look

When it comes to the gender and sexuality binary, change tends not to be welcomed with open arms.  People like what’s familiar and they enjoy what’s comfortable; anybody that doesn’t fall within the traditional gender roles, the gender binary, or isn’t straight is met with weird glances and disdain.

Being comfortable in what is familiar is not inherently a bad thing. It only becomes more of a problem when someone is complacent, indifferent, and contributing to issues that are actively hurting individuals that do not fit into a binary.

 

It seems like there always has to be a revolution that has to happen in order to enact some form of positive change.  And even when that positive change happens, there is no guarantee that it’ll stay, especially when it doesn’t fit within the traditional, heteronormative ideals that have been set in place for years.

Though in recent years, there has been more pushback from youth, especially from Generation Z, against the gender and sexuality norms, largely in the binary beauty industry.  Gen Z is challenging traditional beauty standards by creating an accepting environment for fluid expressions of oneself.

 

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The Beauty Binary

I’m sure most of you are aware of the traditional views of beauty.  From my own personal experience, I know that makeup and skincare and anything of the like were always “for women” or something that was inherently feminine.  If a man were to ever take care of his skin or touch a makeup palette, he was immediately deemed gay.  In other words, the norm is that beauty is only for women and not for men.

The beauty binary is rooted in patriarchal views that exist within our society.  For centuries, women have been told that wearing makeup is the only way to hold some sort of value in society; beauty is all that matters when it comes to living as a woman, and women have been reduced to mere objects.  As for men, they do not need to wear makeup, because more than just their looks are taken into account when considering their roles in the world.

 


Afraid To Express Yourself

Beauty, makeup, grooming, and so many other things have been so gendered for so long, that individuals who have wanted to explore the realm have been unable.  

There was and still is a stigma surrounding those who do not fit into the beauty binary.  If you are a woman and don’t wear makeup you are seen as ugly, and if you are a man who is interested in beauty, you are gay.  

 

Women might feel pressured into wearing makeup even if they don’t want to, and men might suppress any desire for beauty in fear of being perceived as less of a man.


Queerness And Beauty

Makeup has been considered something for straight women to use as a tool to garner the attention of men and the jealousy of other women.  Too long has makeup been weaponized to pit women against other women. And, it has also been restricted to one group.

In order to combat such norms, members and supporters of the queer community have used makeup as a way to resist conforming to the systems set in place.  Queer beauty can range anywhere from having no makeup to having a full face and then some — there really is no rule to it, as long as you feel comfortable and happy expressing yourself with your looks.

 


A New Era

Despite there being obstacles when it comes to challenging the “norms” that have been set in place, that has not stopped Gen Z youth from tackling the beauty binary.  Gen Z does not hesitate to question authority when it comes to ideals that seem unfair or outdated.  With Gen Z, a more accepting environment of those who think “outside the box” has been created, and offers a home to those who express themselves in ways that aren’t strictly in line with the binary. 

Social media has been a great contributor to this as well.  Social media allows people to share their stories with others as well as have conversations on certain topics regarding society.  There is a niche for nearly everyone on the internet, which gives a space for people to express what they are interested in with others who get excited about the same things.

Social media spaces like YouTube or TikTok have been great outlets for teenagers and young adults (and honestly everyone of all ages) to share their beauty journeys.  We have creators like Bretman Rock or Hyram Yarbro who have gone above and beyond in terms of breaking down societal norms when it comes to makeup and skincare.

 

Many other creators on these platforms also share and express their own makeup looks, showing how makeup is accessible for everyone who wants to try it, and that it is not something just for cisgender women.


Dissolution Of The Beauty Binary

As the years have gone on, more and more people are unafraid to wear makeup and express who they are.  Young people — men, women, trans/non-binary people — are becoming more comfortable in their skin and are unafraid to dive into the world of beauty.  

 

There is a slow (but steady) normalization of makeup and beauty for everyone.  An example can already be seen with Korean Pop (KPop) Stars, where boy groups like BTS are showing off their glamorous makeup looks without fear.  Even our own red carpet looks here in America are starting to become more experimental and bend the gender norms that are in place.


Looking Forward To No Beauty Binary

In my personal experience, I’ve seen a lot of straight men painting their nails or wearing makeup and overall expressing themselves in ways that they thought they may not have been able to prior; it’s a joy to see youth embrace beauty fluidity and actively combat the norms that have been set in place by the beauty binary.  And I absolutely cannot wait for the beauty binary to be completely destroyed and for everyone to show off their beauty in any way they want.

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Have you noticed a shift in the beauty binary, primarily among the youth? When do you think the beauty binary will become history? Share your thoughts below.


Read More On Fighting The Beauty Binary:

Shari Siadat Spills On TooD, The Importance Of Identity, And Breaking The Beauty Binary
Laura Kraber Never Asks Why She Should Helm Fluide – She Just Does It
Categories
Makeup

5 Makeup Collaborations We Absolutely Love

Looking to experiment with your makeup? Get in on a 2-for-1 by using makeup collabs that brands have created for pop culture perfection! From influencers to other brands to media favs, these 5 makeup collaborations are absolutely gorgeous (and fun). Grab them before they’re gone – many products are already selling out!

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MORPHE X LISA FRANK COLLECTION

cover of morphe x lisa pop culture eyeshadow palette

Do you want pure childhood nostalgia? The Morphe x Lisa Frank collection will give you that colorful burst of magical madness, but in makeup form. The makeup collaboration will bring you into Lisa Frank’s universe with its bright neon packaging, products, and tools. The collection includes two 35B artistry palettes, two lip crayon trios, six brushes, and a five-piece beauty sponge set. Now get your groove on with the Morphe x Lisa Frank makeup collaboration collection!


Disney x Ulta Beauty Collection

disney x ulta pop culture makeup collab (eyeshadow palette)

Disneyland tickets too expensive? Don’t worry, because Disney and Ulta came out with their Disney brand collaboration that’s a total experience. The collection ranges from makeup, to nail polish, to plush spa sets, to candles. The Disney x Ulta Beauty makeup collab has four eyeshadow vaults: Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom (pictured), Animal Kingdom, and EPCOT. The collaboration also comes with a makeup brush set, sponge set, cosmetic bag, and a face palette. That wraps up the makeup department; however, the Disney x Ulta collection also includes a nail polish vault set, a plush spa headband, and a Churro Bites Candle. 


MAC x Stranger Things

mac x stranger things pop culture makeup collab - cover of the void eyeshadow palette

Hey, just wanted to let you know that you should go on over to MAC x Stranger Things makeup collaboration because there is a big sale rn. Yes, you heard me correctly — and all products are up to 50% off! This epic pop culture makeup collab by MAC comes with four different lip glosses, two eye palettes, two powder blushes, and tons of synthetic face and eye brushes. I swear it will be ~strange~ if you miss out on this deal and collection. Now hurry!


Revolution Beauty x Shrek

Shrek x I Heart Revolution pop culture makeup collab (cover of Happily Ever After Shadow Palette)

The classic film, Shrek, has made its way into mainstream media — and now the makeup industry. Revolution knows what is good, providing the brand’s fans and Shrek aficionados with this first-ever Shrek makeup collaboration. The collection comes with three eyeshadow palettes, four mini shadow palettes, four lipsticks, a highlighter, clay mask, makeup bag, headband, brush set, and “magic” mirror. The Revolution x Shrek brand collaboration is inspired by the Shrek characters; therefore, get outta my article and into Revolution x Shrek’s makeup collection.

(Editor’s Note: QUILL prides itself on 4+-star average ratings; unfortunately, no ratings are available for these products. Revolution is reputable, however, and we recommend their products overall! And, let’s be real: how could we not include this collection?!)


Kylie x Kris

kylie x kris makeup collab from kylie cosmetics (kris pr box)SIGNED KRIS PR BOX (with all products) – $295

Have you been Keeping up with the Kardashians? Well, momager Kris Jenner and Kylie Jenner came out with their mother-daughter makeup collaboration recently. The theme revolves around cocktail hour for their collection, which comes with a lip crayon set, pressed eye powder palette, powder blush & highlighter cheek duo, under eye patches, and a lip serum. You can also get a signed Kris PR Box filled with every product from the collab. Honorary Kardashian: check!


Which brand’s makeup collab is your favorite? Any makeup collaborations you’d like to see? Tell us below!


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Makeup

8 Dupes for Youthforia’s BYO Blush

Arguably their most popular and sought after product, Youthforia’s BYO Blush is one-of-a-kind: it matches and forms a flush based on your skin’s pH, giving you color that’s impossible to replicate. So, how do you find an alternative to a blush that does that? Bring in the BYO Blush dupes now, please – QUILL has 8 that can easily replace the Youthforia fav!

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On-the-Glow Blush

PIXI on the glow blush

Pixi’s On-the-Glow is a fantastic dupe for BYO Blush, thanks to an insane list of fruit extracts. Some you’ll find: blueberry to fight inflammation, apple as an anti-aging agent, and raspberry for its fill of vitamin C – great to help brighten and protect at the same time.

Both Youthforia’s option and its dupe feature aloe for its soothing properties. On-the-Glow matches the nourishing properties of BYO Blush’s various oils, choosing castor and sea buckthorn oil, the latter of which can help regulate excess oil, fight uneven skin texture, and help heal wounds. 

An interesting difference: Youthforia chose willow bark extract to help exfoliate and unclog pores, cleansing the skin of dirt and debris; Pixi decided to use witch hazel to help purify and tone skin with its astringent properties.

Ultimately, this blush won’t match your pH, and that’s a bummer. But it’s also half the price, is good for your skin despite being makeup, and comes in three shades, so you can choose the one that’s most flattering – or mix two different options together for the same price!

BUY NOW – $18


BeachPlease Lip + Cheek Cream Blush

TOWER 28 beachplease cheek and lip tint

This is a cream blush. I know, alarm bells, it must be highly-pigmented! But simmer down – Tower 28 wouldn’t do you dirty like that.

Instead, the tinted balm deposits a subtle hint of color on cheeks and lips without any caking or bursting hues. It’s less of a blush and more of a subtle swipe of color.

Ingredients-wise, green tea extract calms skin in this dupe, as well as aloe – which you’ll recognize in BYO Blush. Both also utilize oils for their nourishing properties – avocado and castor are special features in BeachPlease, though the dupe also has sunflower oil and jojoba esters. 

BeachPlease utilizes waxes (including sunflower) and shea butter for its nourishing, creamy formula, which glides right on. Add in bonuses like rosemary extract for firming and vitamin E to both repair and protect skin, and you have a worthy dupe for Youthforia’s BYO Blush. While we can’t recommend sleeping in this one, we can recommend wearing it whenever you want.

BUY NOW – $20


Bionic Liquid Blush

bionic blush by milk makeup

We love Milk Makeup for its inclusivity, but we’re spotlighting their Bionic Blush for its damn good ingredients.

Over here at QUILL, we’re big fans of mushrooms (especially reishi). So we were, quite understandably, thrilled to see that Milk’s Bionic Blush includes nourishing snow and reishi mushrooms, combining their hydrating and firming properties with hyaluronic acid’s ability to lock in all of that moisture.

The BYO Blush dupe also has plant-derived collagen, which erases any hint of aging by improving saggy skin and upping elasticity. Jojoba oil is found in both for its hydrating properties, but Bionic Blush gets an assist from sodium hyaluronate, too. So, while you may not have five billion oils, you have solid ingredients that will give you that nourishing, softening, smoothing touch.

Bionic Blush comes in four shades, all of which are considered “natural finishes,” thanks to the ability to build up color. No neon at first application, just a slow burn (figuratively, of course).

BUY NOW – $22


Cheek Kiss Liquid Blush

milani cheek kiss youthforia byo blush dupe

For less than $10, you can get a dupe for Youthforia’s BYO Blush that is extremely impressive. Milani’s blush is a kiss to the cheek, rather than a slather along the side of your face. Appropriate that it’s called Cheek Kiss, then, hm?

In terms of ingredients, they don’t really seem like equals. But take a look closer at what their ingredients actually do, and you’ll see that they each achieve the same aims.

As we know, all nourishment and fixes to various ailments come in the form of oils in Youthforia’s option. Softening, smoothing, anti-aging, hydrating – it’s all there. Instead of using a slew of oils, Milani relies on ingredients like glycerin to hydrate, watermelon extract to brighten and even out skin tone, and vitamin E for restoring and protecting. 

Still, the above don’t cover everything that BYO Blush’s ingredients do, so the heavy lifter rises to the surface: pomegranate extract. The ingredient helps with acne, reduces fine lines, promotes collagen production, prevents sun damage, and acts as a skin detoxifier, too. It basically cleans up your skin’s aisle 5 in one fell swoop.

And, we’ll emphasize it one more time: less. than. $10. Can you really score a better deal? (Love you, Target.) 

BUY NOW – $9.99


Juice Pot

the beauty crop juice pot

Maybe I’m just lame, but The Beauty Crop has only recently begun popping up for me. And when searching for dupes for BYO Blush, their Juice Pot was a quick qualifier.

BYO Blush is all about acting as skincare, and we’re gonna be honest: Juice Pot has talc. While not necessarily bad for your skin, it’s not like you can sleep in it. Regardless, we’re including this blush for its other ingredients and rave reviews.

The highly-pigmented formula proudly lists vitamin E as an ingredient, thanks to its reparative and protective properties against UV. They also boast elderberry to help balance out excess oil, and bilberry to fight hyperpigmentation by brightening dark spots and the epidermis overall.

Bilberry is also a great anti-inflammatory, so if you have acne or irritated skin, you’re in the clear – even with the presence of talc here.

BUY NOW – $15.99


Hy-Power Eye, Cheek & Lip Pigment Paint

Hy-Power Eye, Cheek & Lip Pigment Paint, a youthforia byo blush dupe

Consider Mother Monster in the running against Youthforia. Hy-Power works as a lip, cheek, and eye tint, so if you thought you needed three products? Yeah, no, you don’t anymore.

Hy-Power is ~powered~ by three key ingredients: plant squalane, which protects and softens skin; hyaluronic acid, for its moisture and hydration-lock abilities; and maracuja extract, which nourishes and calms skin. 

There aren’t oils in Hy-Power, but the amount of hydration you get from the above three ingredients rivals every oil in BYO Blush. Plus, vitamin E protects and acts as a bridge between protecting and repairing your skin from damage from environmental stressors.

BUY NOW – $24


Blush

i'm MEME blush

Look, not gonna lie when I say that this BYO Blush dupe stood out to me immediately because of the brand name, “I’m MeMe.” Do I know how to pronounce it? Is it probably not the way I think it’s pronounced? Yeah. Regardless: I’m in love.

In terms of fab ingredients, I’m MeMe includes the Vita D complex in their blush. “What is that?” I hear you ask.

Let me tell you: it’s a combo of vitamin D, almond, orange, and cranberry extracts, all of which help with evening out skin tone and hyperpigmentation, giving you an overall glow. Topped with orange peel oil to fight inflammation and acne, your skin will be clearer than ever!

For the nourishment that you don’t get in a swamp of oils, enjoy shea butter and eucalyptus oil – the latter of which has been suggested to encourage ceramide production and add moisture. Kaolin also comes into play to keep excess oil out.

BUY NOW – $15


Dew Blush Liquid Cheek Blush

SAIE Dew Blush Liquid Cheek Blush, a youthforia dupe

And to round out the list, we have Saie, whose ingredients can rarely be beat. Coming in six shades, from light pink to deep berry, all skin tones can reap the benefits of Saie’s Dew Blush. 

One thing I want to point out immediately: it’s fragrance-free. There aren’t any added essential oils or fragrances to make the blush pop the second you open the bottle. Saie relies on its solid ingredients instead, not smells, and QUILL appreciates a company that stands by its products’ compositions.

Speaking of ingredients, you’ll love to see brightening licorice root extract and mulberry, as well as glycerin for hydration. But it’s the unique ingredients that make this product the closer, the finale, the themme fatale of the list.

Basically, the Youthforia dupe uses elderberry to fight free-radical damage, while evening primrose soothes dry patches, and comfrey leaf extract fights aging and rejuvenates dull skin. The formula is also Clean according to Sephora’s standards, so no ick is to be found in the ingredients list.

BUY NOW – $25

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What dupes for Youthforia’s BYO Blush do you love? Tell us in the comments!


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