Product Reviews: Cheap Thrills Part #2 – Power Brow combo by L’Oreal & NYX

Per the theme of the first of my three-part series for cheap beauty thrills this summer, my second blog post is dedicated to achieving awesome eyebrows for a few dollars. As I said before, “cheap thrills” is meant with the most sincere praise! I’m all for looking great with quality products, at a low impact on my wallet. But there’s so much out there to choose from – let’s take a look at a few that I’ve come to love for my brows.

I think that one of the most misunderstood facial features to play up with makeup are the eyebrows – they can be either dramatically overdrawn and too dominating, or not be balanced enough and end up getting “lost” in an overall look. But there are two simple rules to getting your brows under control, and a part of your daily look. Rule #1: always clean up the brow area first by removing stray hairs. Whether it’s with waxing, tweezing or threading, it definitely helps to have a pro give you a great shape to start with – just make sure you maintain accordingly going forward. Rule #2: use products that give you a balanced, face-framing look that naturally complements you, and doesn’t overwhelm. Great brows are truly a powerful asset, even if you don’t have much other makeup on.

During summer, I’ve found that a solid combination to achieve great brows daily starts with a brow mascara, and ends with a brow pencil. Brow mascaras work two-fold: they lock down and tame unruly brow hairs, while adding color to even out and darken the brow.

I love NYX’s Tinted Brow Mascara since it reminds me a bit of Glossier’s Boy Brow, with a slightly larger brush. Begin with the thicker part of your brow (above the inner corner of your eye), and brush out to the end by following the brow’s natural arch. This formula does not flake, and darkens while blending in naturally. During a hot and humid day, a brow mascara definitely holds up better than powder or wax formulas. I use the shade Chocolate, which is a perfect golden brown that complements my auburn hair.

Next, I fill in and define where needed with a brow pencil – especially with a spoolie brush on the end. L’Oreal’s Brow Stylist Shape & Fill pencil is awesome for defining clean lines, filling gaps to give a fuller appearance, and is easily applied as a twist-up pencil. The spoolie is essential for blending the brow mascara and pencil products together, to create a natural effect. Plus, I love to use this spoolie to finish shaping brow hair into place, without adding more color. The shade below is 115 Brunette, and it blends well with the Chocolate shade from NYX. This formula is very long wearing, and does not smear – it’s held up during my regular sailing regattas, and attending an outside wedding this summer.

I also keep a spare L’Oreal Brow Stylist pencil in my gym bag makeup kit, as there’s no need for a pencil sharpener. It’s a quick and easy way to give color and control, especially if you are packing light for the gym or travel.

At ULTA and Target, it’s under $20 total for these two products together! Plus, both of these brands are coupon-eligible at ULTA, and often have BOGO deals – I’ve learned to stock up and have spares handy when needed. If you are in need of changing up your products, or are interested in playing with your brow look a bit more, both of these are easy to use and quality products to get you moving in the right direction without having to spend a lot.

© 2018 28daysbeauty

Product Review: Thrive Causemetics Triple Threat Color Stick & Infinity Waterproof Brow Liner

I am so excited to write this review, as I believe this brand is one to truly watch in the beauty industry. It’s not everyday that you come across emerging brands that have a purpose to serve the greater good and challenge the status quo, but they do exist! Think TOMS Shoes, Warby Parker, and FEED, for example.  Also, it’s rather rare in the beauty industry. Through the data algorithm magic of Facebook targeting, an ad came across my newsfeed that directly spoke to me – Thrive Causemetics, which gives a product to a woman in need for every beauty product purchased. The ad was bright in showcasing the eye-catching turquoise packaging, an on-trend highlighter for brows, and most importantly, the message had true heart. I clicked, read more, and ultimately purchased two products (which I knew I’d be able to use everyday) to get a better idea of who this newer brand is.

As I read more about the brand and company, I learned that it was founded by a woman who had real-world beauty and cosmetics industry experience, but who had also had experienced personal loss by losing a close friend to cancer. Through various giving partners, Thrive Causemetics donates product to women fighting cancer. This really spoke to me, as my own circle of friends and family has been affected by cancer, and I wanted to learn how she was making a difference with her brand. Products are named after people, are vegan, and made without the ingredients that have a lot of controversy around them in terms of safety (parabens, sulfates, etc). I’ve put a link at the bottom of this blog post that is their “About Us” page, as I feel like they tell their own story really well, and I’m happy to help spread the word.

I chose the Triple Threat Color Stick in “Maggie” (a rosy, berry pink), and the Infinity Waterproof Brow Liner in “Christina” (a universally light blonde), and gave them a try during the month of February. Read on for the details!

thrive causemetics
Triple Treat Color Stick and Infinity Waterproof Brow Liner
thrive causemetics
“Maggie” and “Christina” shades

First off, I LOVE the packaging because it’s both useful and easy to use. Each product has an attached brush, and the Color Stick’s brush does not face the product. This is great, because I can easily cap the end of the color/product, and spray clean the brush to let air dry. This is huge for hygiene, because I really dislike products that have a brush constantly in contact with the powder or cream product – that breeds bacteria, which leads to breakouts. So, much applause for the Thrive team to use smart packaging! The tiny kabuki brush blends the “Maggie” cream blush easily – just swipe the product on your cheeks, and use the kabuki to blend in circles. Or swipe the color on your lips, for a very pretty lip color – it applies just like lipstick! The Brow Liner twists up to give just the right amount of color, plus the spoolie brush on the end easily blends color in and controls brow hairs.

Second, the formulas rock. The color payoff is beautiful, and is true to what you see. The “Maggie” shade has just the slightest bit of shimmer, but looks natural and is long-wearing. Don’t let the intense bright pink shade fool you – the brighter the color the more natural the blush looks on cheeks. It’s a moisturizing and non-sticky lip color as well, and it is definitely on-trend right now with achieving the mono-chromatic look. The “Christina” shade went on smoothly, blended in perfectly with my brow hair, and had just enough wax to control brows all day.

I can’t wait to order more from this brand, and have also joined their lab to help answer questions as they develop future products. They have a fun yet sincere approach to their brand, and I appreciate their sense of duty to give back. As promised, click here to read more about them. As a veteran of the beauty industry, I really appreciate what they are doing since it’s a different approach to producing product and is making a difference in women’s lives.

© 2017 28daysbeauty