June Favourites, updates and wishlist

ByGary B. Cooks

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COLOURPOP Shadow Palette

Bare Necessities & Stone Cold Fox 

These are so good, especially Stone Cold Fox. I have two 9-pan palettes from Colourpop, which are both really good, but I think these are even better, particularly the shimmery shades. Pretty much all eyeshadows I’ve tried so far on the eyes have excellent pigmentation, they are so smooth and blend with such ease. There’s so many taupe shades in various depths, so I can create a nice basic natural look and the shimmers can easily be picked up with a brush (unlike in So Taupe) and don’t need much layering on the eyelids. Eyeshadows last well on me and I get no creasing, but I often use a setting spray, since I’m currently testing three, so that is likely helping a lot. I think I have everything I need with these two palettes and I’m very happy with the quality.  

TOO FACED Born This Way Foundation 


I haven’t bought a high-end foundation in a while, but this caught my eye when I was watching Youtube videos for pale shades of foundations recommendations. I got the shade Swan, which isn’t the lightest one, but the lighter Cloud looked so off-white on swatches, I assumed it would be too light. Swan is actually a tiny bit darker than my skin tone, so not ideal, but it blends in ok. I haven’t had it long and I’ve only worn it with my summertime skin care (which is glowy), but the name fits this foundation. It’s got a good amount of coverage, about medium, so I only need a tiny bit of concealer under my eyes and on an old blemish mark, but despite the higher coverage, it looks like skin and very natural. It wears nicely through the day too without flaking or making my lines very obvious. It fits my dry skin.

I rarely mentioned this, though I just posted a review about it, but I’ve had it since november and it’s the concealer I use on most days. It’s got a good amount of coverage for me, it’s not matte so it looks more natural and it lasts well, but its main plus is the amount of nice ingredients, so it’s makeup with skin care. It has niacinamide, vitamin C, caffeine, resveratrol, hyaluronic acid, peptides, salicylic acid and a couple of extracts. Shade Flax is a tiny bit dark and yellow, but like the TF foundation it blends in ok. 

My long-time favourite. This formula genuinely feels like using an eraser when there’s not much on the sponge. Though I wear Clinique on most days, I put the shade Brightener on top to lift the area under my eye, since it has a pink tone to it. Otherwise I use shade 00 Ivory which fits me perfectly. 

Another old favourite and I have a backup for this because I like it so much. It’s such an amazing highlighter, a neutral champagne shade with an intense glow, but very fine shimmer. Texture is something between a powder and a cream, so I apply it with fingers and blend the edges with a sponge if needed. 

This is from the latest Revlon’s line, which is designed mostly for oily skin and I got all three products. I thought this line certainly won’t be for me, but I found myself reaching for this powder on most days. Normally I wear Physician’s Formula Rose All Day, which I still adore, but I use skin care that leaves a strong glow and an SPF over it, and this is more mattifying. It’s very finely milled, smooth and not very obvious on the skin. I find this makes my skin and makeup look smoother and just better, plus it never sticks to a certain area, leaving an odd textured patch like it happened to me at Maybelline Fit Me loose powder recently. My skin is dry, so me saying this keeps me matte all day is not the best endorsement for the powder, but I saw reviews are in general good. 

BENEFIT Wanderful World Blushes Powder Blusher 

Shellie (mini) and Willa

These are new and Benefit quite unusually for them released a whole collection, instead of just one blush at a time like they used to do. I own an absolutely ancient Coralista, which used to be my favourite and most used blush, but I don’t really know where it is at the moment. I picked a full size Willa and a mini Shellie, which I see as a replacement for Coralista. These are insanely pigmented. I only need to touch them with my fluffy blush brush and it’s enough for my (granted, very pale) skin. A mini will last me forever (sadly they don’t have a mini Willa, so I got the full size). Willa is a warm-ish pink, more of a I-just-came-from-the cold shade for me, while Shellie is a proper coral that brightens up the face. Formula is smooth and blends ok, though these are very pigmented and I need to apply a very small amount, so it’s not like blending a less pigmented blush that I can apply gradually. I’m very interested in getting a shade or two more of these. 

This is such a perfect nude shade for when I want to define my lips and have it look like I have nothing on. I’ve praised this formula before and it’s one of my absolute favourites. It’s one of the most long lasting and feather-light lipsticks, plus it’s matte, which is my preferred finish. 

MILANI Color Fetish Matte Lip Makeup – The Flora Collection

320 Petal

I’m not completely sold on the shade (swatch is somewhere in this story for now), since I mostly wear either nudes or reds, but the quality of the formula deserves a praise. For one it’s super smooth and fully opaque in first swipe, but I most appreciate the staying power, as it can survive about 8h+ without fading much. 

Another of my favourite nude shades. This one is darker than Oriflame’s and it’s a not exactly a no-makeup look shade for me, but it’s a lovely neutral that’s neither too pink nor too peachy. Formula is matte, but creamy feeling and I love the format of it because I can be precise and it kind of works as a lip liner too. 

DEBORAH MILANO 24 Ore Waterproof Eye Pencil

5 Golden Green

I’ve realised that my makeup collection is in general quite old and last year I barely bought anything new, but my eyeliners are particularly old. I own an absolutely ancient Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliner in Stash, which I used to use every day, but it has become dryer and haven’t used it in a while. They discontinued it since, so I set upon find a replacement for my favourite green-gold shade. Luckily I didn’t have to go far, as I found it in my local DM. Deborah’s shade is similar, but lighter. Formula is creamy, colour pay-off great and it lasts well. It wasn’t cheap for drugstore, but it’s good quality.  

OLAPLEX No.9 Bond Protector Nourishing Hair Serum

The latest Olaplex product, this one is a leave-in, which is not a cream with silicones like no.6, but a gel-ish liquid and I liked it straight away. I own all Olaplex products, but I’m still missing a spray leave-in among their offering, though this is close enough or even better. It’s the first step I apply after rinsing off the mask or conditioner and before my “army of usual leave-ins” (Joico K-Pak Liquid Reconstructor, Moroccanoil All-in-one leave-in conditioner and Palmer’s Hair Oil) and I find my hair dries smoother. Formula is light and a small amount can be applied to a large area, so I don’t have to use more than a pump or two. I haven’t had it long, but so far I’m a fan.   


KISS Strip Lash Adhesive

I needed a better glue than what’s included in the boxes with Essences fake lashes (to be fair the bar is low) and I picked this because it’s sold in DM & Müller and has good reviews. It’s good and I’m glad I picked it up. It holds all day, the corners of the lashes stick right away (that’s where Essence fails miserably) and it isn’t in any way annoying to use (it has a brush as the applicator, so you don’t waste product). I used to have a Catrice and/or an Essence glue, which I have no idea if they are still sold, but this is so much better. 

Also Essence half lashes are super cute. 

LA ROCHE-POSAY Anthelios UVMune 400 Invisible Fluid SPF50+ Sun Cream

I like my Garnier Fluid, Nivea anti-pigment sunscreen and Shiseido Urban Environment Age Defense SPF 30, but LRP has a new state of the art filter Mexoryl400 in this sunscreen and since I tend to spend quite a lot of time in the sun, it thought this may be a good investment to make. It’s a replacement for their Shaka Fluid, which was in the same packaging. I’ve been using it every day since I got it, but I make sure I apply a foundation over it because the second day trying it, I just quickly applied this on the way and went out. When I came back 2 hours later and saw myself in the mirror – my skin was yellow. The cream has a faint yellow tint and I guess my skin is so pale that it shows. Otherwise it’s similar to Garnier’s Fluid, so very liquid and light, but less elegant and has a shine that lasts on the skin – I make it even worse with a vitamin C serum (I’m currently using the less shiny SVR Ampoule Anti-Ox instead of Afrodita’s because of that) and Balea’s niacinamide day cream. 

Somehow I ended up with three new setting sprays, the first two are well-known and loved, the last is new on the market. I repurchased Urban Decay’s All Nighter, which I had years ago in the original packaging and a day after I placed the order, I was sent the Revlon and Milani version. They are very similar, all do what they are supposed to, so make makeup last all day, all have the same mist, which is not the finest I’ve tried (that honour belongs to ArtDeco), but has no large droplets and all are very light on the skin.  

URBAN DECAY All Nighter Setting Spray Travel Size

A beloved setting spray that does exactly what it promises. Most of my makeup lasts all day with it with the exception of blush. It’s almost the same as the other two and I kind of trust it most because it’s high-end, but on one occasion I have noticed some flakiness on my nose, so it can be drying due to the alcohol content. 

MILANI Make It Last Flora Scented Setting Spray

This is a limited edition version of the popular Make it Last Spray Setting Spray with added floral fragrance, which reminds me of the old The Body Shop LE scent Honeymania, so a sweet floral fragrance. The scent is its main feature and if you want something with perfume, this is the one, though scent disappears fast. I tested it with Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless foundation, which doesn’t have the best staying power (looks so good on my skin, though) and by the end of the day, it was worn off from where I needed it most (red spots from old blemishes), but otherwise it was ok on other parts. Eyeshadow looked good, as did the lipstick, but blush was worn off. It’s the one at which I haven’t noticed drying (yet? It also has alcohol 2nd, but also niacinamide 3rd on the list, so ingredients-wise, this is the nicest).  

This one is made for oily skin and it can be drying, as I’ve also noticed flakies on my nose on one occasion, but I kind of like it most. It promises a blurring effect and I do feel my skin looks best with this one. It’s nothing specific, but the makeup on a whole looks smoother. I wish they made a more hydrating version of this, but if you have oily skin, this may just be the best choice. 

Since I already mentioned the other two products, I may as well mention the Grip Matte primer. Formula is gel-lotion and a very silky feeling one under the fingers. It makes my skin feel so smooth to the touch, it’s nothing I’ve felt before, as it doesn’t have that classic silicone feel to it. Foundation applies nicely over it, smoother than without a primer. It says it blurs pores, which is partly true, by that I mean since it’s clear, you need to apply a foundation over it to see the full effect, but it’s not like Benefit’s Porefessional Pearl. The problem with this line and my dry skin is that I can only use one product at a time in my routine. I used all three at once and my skin felt so dry and tight, however, my makeup was pretty perfect when I took it off. Skin looked smooth and completely matte, foundation didn’t slip into lines, my eye makeup looked like freshly applied, only the blush was gone, but I was rubbing my cheeks at one point because I was removing dust (I was also rubbing my eyes because something fell into my eye. Twice). I think this line is worth a try if you have oily skin.


NAJ OLEARI Absolute Stay Eyeshadow 04 Golden Brown & 05 Pearl Taupe – I’ve been testing these in Müller the last two times I was there. I’m looking for new cream eyeshadows to renew my stash and these proved to be by far the best from what I could test in drugstores. Creamy, very pigmented and once they set, they don’t wipe off the skin – they are essentially dupes for Kiko’s. I’m mostly drawn to these two neutral shades, but several are nice. 
NAJ OLEARI Luminous Eye Pencil 02 Pearly Brown – an eyeliner that would replace my Urban Decay Bourbon. It’s a medium brown with gold flecks and a nice, smooth formula. 

BENEFIT Dandelion & PomPom Blush Powder – I already praised the formula above and these are the two shades I’m most interested in getting next. Dandelion is the only shade that survived from the old line up. 

KISS Falscara – Apparently this is quite popular and praised. You stick these under the lashes and they are supposed to look like lash extensions, since there is no band visible. They are insanely expensive in Müller, though, over 22 €, but you get the special glue and tweezers, while you can repurchase just the lashes later, though we don’t have that set here.

CATRICE Cheek Lover Oil-Infused Blush – I love the Oil-Infused highlighter and I’m considering getting the blush too. I’ve been put off by the coral shade, but lately I’ve been enjoying such colours. 

K18 Leave-in Molecular Repair Hair Mask – some fancy new insanely expensive hair peptide-based technology, which is hailed as the new Olaplex or even better. Obviously I’m interested. It’s not a mask, but you’re supposed to wash the hair with shampoo and then just apply this leave-in. Bottles are so stupidly small, but I can’t help myself be interested. 

SOL DE JANEIRO Brazilian Glossy Nourishing Anti-Frizz Hair Oil – SDJ made a hair silicone-oil with their traditional scent and that sounds so good. It’s not cheap, but these products tend to last a while. 

SOL DE JANEIRO Cheirosa Perfume Mists – I’m drawn to these based on reviews. I know how 62 smells, as I had a cream that to me smelled similar to The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin, but I’m not sure about the others. Reviews are good and I think they might be similar to my beloved BBW mists. 


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