Drugstore Beauty Dash

We get it. You live and breathe all things beauty. (Welcome to the PrettyCity club!) And, while we love designer brands like Chanel, Gucci, and Prada, but we’ve got to feed our beauty habit, pay opur bills... and still have enough money left for soy lattes, yoga classes, and Uber.  

For this edition of Drugstore Beauty Dash, we’ve rounded up a few essential beauty products that are easy to find and won't break the bank.

Essence Eye                                                                                                                                  

They say the eyes are the windows to the soul.  Well, why not make those peepers unforgettable?  Whether you are looking for gorgeous shadows, solid liners, stunning brows or sexy lashes, Essence has you covered.  With eye makeup ranging no more than $10, you can hide, or tell, all with your newfound steal of a deal.  In rich neutrals and easy-to-carry palettes, don't blink and miss out on this one!

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick

Lipstick on the teeth might be our scariest nightmare yet…or was it a real life dilemma?  Not anymore thanks to Revlon. The Super Lustrous Lipstick is not only drenched with hydration but the color stays put on your pout!  Whether you are looking for vixen red or subtle sand colors, Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick has you covered.  And at only $4.99 a tube, be bold and try a few. We won’t kiss and tell.

 

Maybelline Volum’ Express The Falsies Push Up Drama Angel Mascara

Bigger is not always better unless we are talking about hair and lashes of course!  Cue Maybelline Volum’ Express The Falsies Push Up Drama Angel Mascara.  Its signature wing brush actually lifts and extends the lashes to greater lengths. There’s no clumping, no messy residue, or flaking left behind.  Just soft, lengthy lashes that last all day.  Ophthalmologist tested and only $7.49 each, we bat our lashes to that!

Jordana Easyliner for Lips

You’ve got the lipstick, but with pennies to spare, why not grab a lip liner that completes the look?  Jordana’s got you locked and lined with ultimate color.  Creamy, consistent shades that glide on smooth without any need for sharpening, this lip liner is so fabulous that it can be worn on its own!  Choose from a lineup of amazing colors at only $2.99…you will wonder how you ever lived without!

 

Soap & Glory Glow All Out Highlighting Face Powder .31 oz

Cheekbones are all the rage.   With so many highlighting and contouring products out there, it’s easy to get lost in a sea of blushes and powders.   Keep it simple and sexy with Soap & Glory’s All Out Highlighting Face Powder.  A gentle sweep across the cheekbones for a highlighted, luminous look that will make every selfie seem as though there’s perfect lighting.  Get it for $12.99 at local drugstores.

The Best Concealers... and a few concealer mistakes you DON'T want to make!

Best Concealer

The Best Concealers | Concealer Reviews

We've all got our dirty little secrets. When it comes to looking gorgeous, honesty is not the best policy. We recently put dozens of cover-ups and concealers to the test in an effort to find the best products money could buy. A few favorites emerged. A few less-than-stellar concealers made separating the bad from the beautiful an easy task.

Here's what we loved and what to look out for... because getting what you want often begins with figuring out what you don't want. (Turns out that's true of men and makeup.)

So, we begin our search for the best concealers by establishing our list of don'ts..

Concealer Dont's

  • Don't use one concealer for all purposes. For example, the best cover-up for blemishes is often too thick under eyes.
  • Don't apply concealer underneath foundation; that reduces the effectiveness of even the best products.
  • Don't rub; apply by patting lightly with your pointer finger or a flat makeup brush. 

The Best Concealers

Jane Iredale's Circle/Delete Under Eye Concealer, $32, is the best product we've found for concealing dark circles. But this must-have product goes beyond just covering up "raccoon eyes." Key ingredients such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide provide sun protection while vitamin K reportedly acts as a lightening agent to help fade hyperpigmentation. Get yours here.

Best concealer for blemish cover-up

Laura Mercier's Secret Camouflage is the hands-down winner for covering a bevy of skincare sins, from blemishes to blotches. In a range of shades with unsexy names such as 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8, this product proves that concealing imperfections is serious business. Each compact in the Secret Camouflage collection contains two shades: one to match skin's undertones and one to match skin's color. Each shade can be used separately or blended together as needed. Get yours here.

Best Concealers

Best bargain and best VEGAN concealer

Ideal for blemish-prone skin, The Body Shop Matte Clay Concealer helps conceal all types of skin imperfections with their 100% vegan Matte Clay Concealer. This lightweight concealer is enriched with skin-clearing tea tree and offers up a full-coverage matte finish that we tested...and loved

It promises to work well at concealing imperfections, blemishes, and dark circles; we found it's excellent for covering zits and equally as good under eyes. Normally $10, on sale for $6 now here.

 

Best Concealers

Best concealer for him

For men who have something to hide, we like the Menaji Skin Care line, reportedly used by everyone from Tom Hanks to Evander Holyfield. The Undetectable Concealer ($29 at Menskincare.com) is available in hues ranging from Light Camo to Deep Dark Camo. The fragrance-free formula is sure to be a hit with guys, and the added benefit of SPF 8 helps prevent sun damage, particularly good in the sensitive under eye area.

Carolyn's "Best Concealer" pick: Tarte Double Duty Beauty Shape Tape Contour Concealer

"Tarte makes one of my favorite concealers. I discovered it at Ulta when a under eye laser treatment left me with not one but two black eyes! This concealer was dense enough to cover my med spa "oops!" and years later, I still count on it. If you want substantial coverage -- like I do thanks to running several businesses and having four kids -- Tarte serves up natural looking coverage that is ideal for covering up a myriad of sins." Get yours here.

What's your favorite concealer? Do tell! Share the scoop in the comments below or find us on Facebook + Instagram.

The Best Lip Glosses for 2018

The Best Lip Glosses for 2018

This week, we asked PrettyCity readers to share which one beauty product they couldn’t live without. Turns out glittering lips beat pretty peepers 2 to 1, with 1,871 respondents picking lip gloss and balm over mascara. (Powder, bronzer and concealer couldn’t even compete.)

And, since we like to think of ourselves as Beauty MDs, we’re prescribing glosses that shine and balms that soothe...pick two products and sparkle in the morning :-) 

Our A to Z "gloss-ary" of the best lip glosses on the market now.

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The Best Red Lipsticks and The Worst Red Lipsticks: So Many Reds, So Little Time

By Pretty City Editors

The Best Red Lipsticks

The Best Red Lipstick and the Worst Red Lipstick

Crimson lips are simply timeless. We’ve been long-time fans of a classic red lip done right...  but red lipstick done wrong is a messy, feathery, unattractive affair. That's why the most important thing -- other than confidence -- when rocking bold lips, is picking a lipstick that lasts, and dumping the ones that don't. Here's what you must know... hold your kisses until the end, beauties. ;-) 

Red lips demand attention so starting with a smooth canvas is a must. Ban pesky lip bits with Aveda’s Botanical Kinetics Liquid Exfoliant ($27 at Aveda salons and spas and online here). Apply generously to a cotton ball and then swipe over lips. Next, for a perfectly smooth pucker, moisturize lips by swiping on lip balm and then blotting lips with a tissue. 

While some beauty experts recommend certain shades of this hue based on skin tone, we’ve found that trial and error is the true test. Thankfully, we’ve done some of the work for you, pre-screening over two-hundred red lipsticks to round up a few of the darlings and the duds.

Best Red Lipstick: Prescriptives Colorscope Lipcolor in “Racecar Red” ($21)

You’ve undoubtedly heard of fire engine red, but Prescriptives kicks it up a notch with their Colorscope Lipcolor in “Racecar Red,” a juicy apple red available in your choice of cream, shimmer or sparkle finishes. The moist formula goes on smooth but boasts a surprising level of staying power; $21 at Prescriptives.com.

Worst Red Lipstick: NYX Black Label Lipstick in “Cherry” ($7)

We’re fans of the NYX collection and The Black Label collection lipstick in “Cherry” appeared to be a winner at first glance. Unfortunately, this “silky smooth” lipstick went on slick, and didn’t stay put, leaving us red-faced rather than pucker perfect.

Best Red Lipstick: Rimmel’s 1000 Kisses Stay On Lip Liner Pencil in “Red Dynamite” and Lasting Finish Lipstick in “Alarm” ($3 to $5)

For just a few bucks, we fell in love with Rimmel’s 1000 Kisses Stay On Lip Liner Pencil ($3.99 at Walmart) because it glides on easily and keeps its commitment to stay on our lips without straying.   Paired with Rimmel’s Lasting Finish Lipstick in “Alarm” (on sale now for $4.97 at Walgreens), this glamorous duo aims to prove that style can be a steal.

Worst Red Lipstick: Milani’s Glitzy Glamour Gloss in “All About Me” ($6.99)

Take it from us, ladies, avoid red lip gloss at all costs… especially this one. Perhaps as punishment for straying from red lipsticks into red gloss, “All About Me” ended up all over us; and the hue that had looked so beguiling in the drugstore left us looking more foolish than fashionable.

As a side note, we still live and die by Milani's Easy Lipliner Retractable Pencil ($4.99 at local drugstores or at milanicosmetics.com) "Cherry Pie," hand’s down the best bargain-priced red lip liner that we’ve reviewed.

Best Red Lipstick: VMV Hypoallergenics Velvet Matte Lipstick in "Light My Fire" ($27)

Color us yummy, thanks to VMV Hypoallergenics’ long-lasting "Light My Fire.”  This just-right-red is universally flattering, hypoallergenic and 100% Free of Phthalates, Parabens + Preservatives. VMV Hypoallergenics Velvet Matte Lipstick  is made with green tea for antioxidant benefits plus virgin coconut oil for intensive moisturization.

Get it for $27 at vmvhypoallergenics.com.

What's your go-to red hue? Do tell! Share the scoop in the comments below or better yet, head to our Facebook page and share pictures of your favorite red lippie.


This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, PrettyCity may receive compensation… so start clicking!

Drugstore Beauty Dash: Kokie Cosmetics Offers Affordable, Korean-Inspired Beauty Products

Imagine if MAC and Clio had an even more adorable baby and offered it up for a fraction of the cost of its parent's collections -- meet Kokie Professional, a self-described Korean beauty inspired line sold at mass retailers such as Walmart, Bed, Bath and Beyond, Meijer and others. 

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Metallic Lips for Fall 2017 and How to Wear Them

Metallic Lips for Fall 2017 and How to Wear Them

One of the hottest trends for Fall 2017 is metallic lips. Whether it’s a liquid lipstick, gloss or regular lipstick, it looks hot!  But, how exactly do you rock a shiny metallic lip, and what are the best brands and colors? Well, the choices are endless since almost every company has jumped on this beauty bandwagon. After doing some digging (and lots of shameless purchasing), we’ve rounded up some amazing shades for those who want to take a bite out of the Metallic Lip trend for Fall 2017.  

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These Mother's Day Gifts Are Musts!

These Mother's Day Gifts Are Musts!

By PrettyCity Editors

Mother's Day is just days away and if you haven't gotten your Mom a gift yet, it's time to get your shop on. Immediately! There's  still time to get something shipped directly to Mom so you can skip the whole last-minute-digital-gift-card routine and, maybe even, make your mother believe that you've got this adulting concept covered. As if.

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Fifty Shades of Darker Lipstick

Fifty Shades of Darker Lipstick

Everyone's abuzz about the kinky, sex-appeal of Fifty Shades Darker and we're over here thinking about what really turns us on... makeup! 

50 shades? That's nothing.. we've got more lipstick tricks than Christian has whips.

Darker? Why yes, we'd love to. Thanks for asking... and so, today, we're dishing about the deepest, darkest most flattering lipstick hues. How to wear 'em. where to get 'em and which ones have the most sex appeal. 

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Nail Polish, Not Poison.

 Image via  StyleTraces

Image via StyleTraces

Glue. Embalming Fluid. Nail Polish.  One of these things is not like the others. Or is it?

Actually, all three substances typically contain formaldehyde, a colorless gas compound that is also a carcinogen, meaning that it causes cancerous cell growth.   And while it’s no secret that we place a premium on looking pretty, good health is a building block of great looks.  So, to skip the carcinogens but keep the manicures, we’ve rounded up a bevy of lacquers that are long lasting, lovely and formaldehyde-free.

Zoya

Not only is Zoya Nail Polish formaldehyde-free, the collection offers hundreds of hues that go well beyond basics, like “Bevin” a dusty green with teal tones ($9 at Ulta) and “Charity” a faded mauve-purple with copper colored duochrome shimmer ($9 at Ulta).  The collection was created in 1984 when then-pregnant esthetician Zoya Reyzis foresaw the need for a nail polish free of harmful chemicals and carcinogens.  More than three decades later, the Zoya collection offers up high fashion hues with a healthy sensibility. 

Nubar

Nubar's long-lasting, fast-drying nail polish collection is free of formaldehyde.  Those looking for carcinogen-free nail color will love Nubar’s hip hues such as “BOHO," an unconventional, free-spirited fringed rouge-rose that shows off layers & trails of subtle sparkles. Nubar nail lacquers are available online for $8.40 here.

Another of our favorite Nubar products is Nail Clear ($12.99), a nail mask for whitening nails and erasing stains sometimes left behind by harsher polishes. No need to soak nails, just brush on the mask and peel away. The key ingredient is grapefruit extract, an organic whitener that is also an effective antifungal.

Nail Tek

Citra III Formaldehyde Free by Nail Tek ($15 at Ulta) is an effective nail strengthener with a natural citrus-based alternative to formaldehyde. Citra is available in three formulas, one for healthy nails, one for soft, peeling nails and another for dry, brittle nails. We like to think of the collection as the cure for whatever ails your nails, all formaldehyde-free, of course.

Pre-Wedding Beauty Tips

Pre-Wedding Beauty Tips

Getting married is like preparing for a marathon. You start off excited and pumped up, and then the sheer size of this undertaking starts to weigh on you. Not to worry, with our tips on sporting picture perfect eyes and lips, you’re sure to win the trophy for chicest bride… and his heart.

Pucker Pretty

Soft, full lips are the ideal beginning (and ending) to a picture perfect wedding look. Lips that are Jolie-esque can be yours in four simple steps: Plump lips if needed, exfoliate, soften with a rich moisturizer and finish with a hue that complements your skin tone and your gown.

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The Best Mascaras

The Best Mascaras

Big, bad lashes have been the hallmark of sex appeal since women in the early 1900s began amping up their lashes with homemade concoctions crafted from hot beads of wax. If that sounds dangerous, consider that some women today are opting for Eyelash Transplants. The procedure, which can run upwards of $3,000, is done by harvesting hair from the scalp and implanting it into the lash line.

And then there are eyelash extensions, semi-permanent add-ons that cost $150 to $300 and serve up faux, fluttery lashes that can last up to three months… sans the use of mascara. 

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The Best and Worst Eye Makeup Removers

The Best and Worst Eye Makeup Removers

We’re always telling you how to bat a lash at the latest makeup trends; so it’s only fair that we divulge how to dispose of eye makeup with just one swipe when the look you love becomes so last season.

And while Dolly Parton may sleep with her makeup on, “In case I have to get up in the middle of the night," you don’t need to be caught in yesterday’s cat eyes the morning after. (Sorry, Dolly.) Here’s our definitive list of the best and the worst eye makeup removers, read it and you won’t be caught with something less than sensational around your eyes… like liners that run and mascaras that flake.

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The Best New Beauty Products: September 2016

The Best New Beauty Products: September 2016

There are so many new beauty products on the market, but this month's top 5 new beauty products stand apart from the rest. Here's what you need to buy now and why...

IGK Amaro Ombre Highlight Spray

Looking to change up your ‘do without the commitment? The IGK Amaro Ombre Highlight Spray adds dimension, highlights and pigment that you can easily wash out when you’re done. This spray isn’t like most temporary color sprays, it offers subtle, natural looking results that show even on dark hair. Meaning even brunettes can rock that golden hue and add depth to their color without the commitment of bleach.

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The Best Lipglosses

The Best Lipglosses

Our short, sweet and shiny round up of the very best lip glosses. Pucker up, buttercup, things are about to get sticky... in the best of ways!

NARS Lip Gloss

NARS lip gloss comes in so many oh-so-shiny shades, it’sone of our top lip gloss picks year after year. Try Striptease, a soft nude or Sixties Fan, a rich pomegranate hue. The clear shade is even perfect for layering on top of a matte lipstick. 

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Celebrity Beauty Secrets

Celebrity Beauty Secrets

Jennifer Garner

This butt-kicking beauty and mother radiates a kickin' sense of style. Her look is ultra-polished, reminiscent of classic natural beauties such as Katherine Hepburn. What's in Garner's medicine cabinet? First, she banishes undereye circles and bags with the help of the DuWop line of products. Garner's a fan of DuWop's Citrus i Gels for Dark Circles ($25 for three pairs here).

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