Mar 312012

I’m always looking for dupes of my favorite products with less expensive ones.  I was on the Coastal Scents website and I noticed very good customer reviews on their lip pencils.  I also was intrigued by the fact that there were pencils with names similar to some of my favorite MAC Lip Pencils.   This is the 1st post in which I’ll begin comparing the MAC Lip Pencils to the Coastal Scents Lip Pencils.

I’m starting off with Currant vs. Current.

Above is MAC Currant Lip Pencil

Here is Coastal Scents Current Lip Pencil

Swatches of the two next to each other.

 On the Left is MAC on the Right is Coastal Scents.  You can see how there’s more pigment in the Coastal Scents Current Lip Pencil.  I had to lighten up my application while swatching.  This is the reason you can see a change in the intensity. They are very close in color and will provide similar effects.  See how

I paired them with MAC Up the Amp lipstick below.

MAC Up The Amp Amplified Lipstick alone.

MAC Up the Amp Amplified Lipstick with with MAC Currant Lip Pencil

Below is the same MAC Up the Amp Lipstick with Coastal Scents Current Lip Pencil

I’m very pleased and impressed with Coastal Scents Lip Pencils.  I love the fact that they glide on very smoothly.  More so than the MAC Lip Pencils.  I’m even more pleased that the Coastal Scents Lip Pencils only cost $2.95 compared to MAC Lip Pencils at $14.

Mar 262012

Are you looking for a professional makeup brush belt?  Well here’s my comparison of Elf vs MAC.

I purchased both brush belts last year when I started my freelance make up business.  I bought the ELF Brush Belt first because I didn’t realize that the MAC Brush belt was available on the MAC Pro website.  I tried to return the Elf Brush Belt but was informed by customer service that they didn’t accept returns or exchanges.  The rep explained that due to their prices being so inexpensive, they had a policy of all sales final.  I totally missed that memo.  I won’t ever forget it though.

My Pro MAC Brush Belt.  Last year it was $40.  Not sure if the price went up with the rest of the increase in Feb.

Elf Brush Belt.  I purchased it last year for $15. This is my first time opening it. LOL! :-)

There’s obviously a difference in the quality and texture of the belts.  My MAC brush belt feels more like leather and is more sturdy.  Honestly, even though it feels different, The Elf brush belt will still serve its purpose and get the job done.  I’m just not sure how long it would last though.  I’m very confident that my MAC brush belt will last me years and years.  Without a doubt, I consider it one of my best investments as a freelance makeup artist.

Sep 162011
up & up™ Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes 30-pk.
*The picture was taken from the website*
These are Target brand makeup remover wipes.  They are designed to be comparable to my favorite Ponds wipes.   They retail for $3.59.
Here are details about the wipes from
  • Number of Pieces: 30
  • Includes: Facial Exfoliant, Face Cleanser
  • Health Concern: Normal Skin
  • Used For: Exfoliating, Cleansing
  • For Use On: Face
  • Product Form: Wipe
  • Capacity (volume): 10.0 Oz.
  • Health Facts: Hypoallergenic, Alcohol-Free, Oil-Free
Side by side view of Up and Up wipe and Ponds wipe
Close up of Up and Up wipe in my hand.   It’s the same size as the Ponds wipe, but definitely doesn’t feel the same.
Close up of Ponds wipe in my hand.  I love the texture of these wipes.  It’s almost as if I’m using a very soft and gentle towel.  It makes me feel as though my face is being thoroughly cleaned without tingling, burning, or any type of irritation.

Here are my thoughts on how they truly compare.

My first test with any pack of wipes is the amount of moisture they have.  When I opened the pack of Up and Up wipes and took out the wipe, I could immediately see that it wasn’t as wet as the Ponds wipes.  I also noticed that the Up and Up wipes didn’t seem as sturdy as the Ponds wipes.

Overall they’re not bad.  They are about $2 cheaper than the Ponds wipes.  The downside is that I smell the fragrance more in these than in the original Ponds wipes.  I’ve also noticed that I have to be very careful when removing eye makeup.  If I rub too much, my eyes will burn.  I’ve never noticed my eyes burning with the Ponds wipes.
Have you tried the Target Up and Up Makeup Remover Wipes?

Aug 102011

I mentioned in part 1 of this series that I wished would’ve had the dupes for the M.A.C. #224 and #217 available.  I wanted to do separate posts so that I didn’t overwhelm you all to talk about them.

The Crown Brush C433 Pro Blending Fluff (whew long name) on the left is the brush the post will focus on.

Here are the two brushes next to each other.  You can see why I was so disappointed that didn’t have these brushes.  It’s very hard to tell the difference between the two…well besides the logos. Ha ha!  As far as how they function, I honestly don’t notice a difference.  This is the absolute best dupe for a M.A.C. brush that I’ve found to date.  The next time I see them available, I’m buying 3.  I purchased this Crown Brush in March of this year.  At the time, I wasn’t sure how it was compare so I only bought one.  I totally regret that now.

Coastal Scents has a brush that looks similar on the website, but it’s always sold out, so I don’t know how it compares.   The Coastal Pro Blending Fluff Brush retails for $3.95 on their website.
 Have any of you tried the Coastal Scents brush?