Category Archives: product reviews

product of the week: theBalm cosmetics mary-lou manizer luminizing powder/highlighter product review

Mary-Lou Manizer by theBALM Cosmetics Product Review. Makeup tips, tricks, product reviews makeup and beauty blog HUSH Beauty.

theBalm Cosmetics Mary-Lou Manizer Luminizing Powder/Highlighter, $24. Photo copyright HUSH Beauty 2012.

I’ve been meaning to do a product review on the Mary-Lou Manizer from theBalm Cosmetics for awhile, and it’s just about time to make a Product of the Week post, so I decided to combine the two. I received a sample size of this amazing highlighting powder with my October 2012 Birchbox shipment and as soon as I ran out I went straight to to order the full-size version.

Mary-Lou Manizer by theBALM Cosmetics Product Review. Makeup tips, tricks, product reviews makeup and beauty blog HUSH Beauty.

theBalm Cosmetics Mary-Lou Manizer Luminizing Powder/Highlighter, $24. Photo copyright HUSH Beauty 2012.

The Mary-Lou Manizer is my new favorite product. It is a perfect honey hue and I use it as an eyeshadow, highlighter and all-over shimmer. I love using a blending eyeshadow brush to apply it to my brow bone, and then I use it all over the face as a shimmer before I apply my blush and bronzer. If the blush/bronzer combo comes out too heavy, I dust a little bit of this luminizing powder around the edges to soften the pigments from my blush and bronzer.

Mary-Lou Manizer by theBALM Cosmetics Product Review. Makeup tips, tricks, product reviews makeup and beauty blog HUSH Beauty.

theBalm Cosmetics Mary-Lou Manizer Luminizing Powder/Highlighter, $24. Photo copyright HUSH Beauty 2012.

This versatile luminizer gives off a “soft-focus glow” wherever you apply it. It contains light-reflecting silica particles that conceal blemishes and fine lines, making it a wonderful illuminating “cover-up”. The honey color deposits a sheer shimmer, blurring imperfections. The Mary-Lou Manizer from theBalm Cosmetics makes you look good in all kinds of light settings, leaving your face with a fresh glow.

Birchbox suggests to use a blush brush and sweep this luminizing powder on cheekbones, layering over foundation. You can also apply directly to bare skin for a low-maintenance beauty routine that instantly enhances your features. Birchbox also suggests to use your fingertips or a shadow brush to wear as a shadow, or adding a bit of luminizer to the bridge of your nose and/or lower lash line to illuminate your whole face.

I have never heard of theBalm Cosmetics until I received the sample size of this product in my October 2012 Birchbox shipment. The Mary-Lou Manizer is available for $24 from and theBalm Cosmetics’s website. You can also buy this product from at the discounted price of $20.40.

what we’re wearing: product review of urban decay naked skin weightless ultra definition liquid makeup/foundation

product review of urban decay weightless ultra definition liquid makeup foundation at HUSH beauty blog - a makeup and beauty blog filled with makeup tips, tricks, product reviews, steals, deals and more.

Urban Decay Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup, $38. Photo copyright HUSH Beauty 2012.

I decided to write this product review on Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup awhile ago when the foundation first came out (late this past summer). Since I wanted to re-design the blog before I posted some serious content I never finished the post. I bought this foundation the minute it came out and I am currently on my third bottle (I’ve run out and had to buy a new one about once a month so far). This foundation is absolutely perfect on my “normal” to “combination” (I’m oily in the t-zone) skin, feeling truly “weightless” as it really doesn’t have that heavy, caked-on effect that comes along with wearing many other foundations.

For years I was using different foundations that Chanel put out, including their current Chanel Vitalumiere Moisture-Rich Radiance Fluid Makeup ($55, I find that Urban Decay’s Naked Skin is a lot more lightweight than the Chanel foundations I have used, and it leaves such a flawless look on my face. These factors, combined with the price difference (UD’s is a bit cheaper), made me change my brand of liquid foundation to Urban Decay for the last few months. I’m sure this product will soon become part of the HUSH Beauty Seal of Approval group.

First, I’d like to say that I absolutely hate it when foundation feels heavy and caked-up on my skin. I was never a fan of powder foundation for this reason — they often end up cakey and blotchy on my face. Liquid foundations, however, leave my skin with a much more even tone, blurring imperfections and adding radianceUrban Decay’s Naked Skin Foundation is so lightweight that you really do feel like your skin is naked, and it never cakes or blotches.

Urban Decay’s Naked Skin has a formula that is supposed to mimic the beautiful skin you were born with, creating a natural and luminous demi-matte finish. This foundation is formulated with light-diffusing spheres, which leaves your face looking professionally retouched, with hardly a hint of makeup weight. The finish is matte but never flat, and luminous at the same time, without adding unnecessary shine to your skin.

Every woman is different, with different skin types and tones. Naked Skin allows for buildable coverage so that you can customize your look and comes in a “meticulously-calibrated range of shades” that really covers all of the different, beautiful skin tones. Urban Decay has formulated a precise shade numbering system for its Naked Skin Foundation to include both warm skin tones (which end in “.0”) and cool skin tones (which end in “.5”). The range of colors starts at 0.5 — a fair, porcelain shade with subtle pink undertones — and ends at 12 — a dark shade with deep, golden undertones. I was so surprised at the range of colors this foundation offers (there are 18 in all) — Urban Decay really hit almost every skin tone that exists, and I don’t think any other company has made a foundation that comes in such a wide range of precise colors.

Aside from the flawless, luminous, “baby skin” look, Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Foundation loads skin with nourishing ingredients including Matrixyl 3000 (a powerful anti-wrinkle peptide), protective and brightening Litchiderm, Green Tea antioxidant and Sodium Hyaluronate for optimal skin hydration and nutrient absorption. It is formulated without Parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, phthalates, GMOs and Triclosan. It comes in a sleek pump bottle with allows more control and less waste of the product.

I’m using Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Liquid Makeup  in shade 4.5 — a medium-light shade with rose undertones. Urban Decay has set up a comprehensive foundation shade finder on their website where you can figure out which one of their 18 shades is perfect for you. They have also set up a page where you can put in the product and shade of foundation you are currently using (or one similar to what you currently use) and “switch” it to your perfect Naked Skin shade.

I honestly feel like I have found the perfect foundation for my skin. It feels like I have little to no makeup on my face while leaving a luminous finish. Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Foundation leaves skin looking professionally retouched while its ingredients protect and nourish skin. Let me know what you think if you decide to try it out 🙂

Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup is available for $38 from Urban Decay’s website, ULTA, Sephora and any other store that sells Urban Decay products.

what we’re wearing: product review of stila’s in the light eyeshadow palette

Product review of Stila's In the Light Eyeshadow Palette. Beauty reviews, tips and tricks, steals deals and more at HUSH Beauty Blog. Photo copyright HUSH Beauty 2012.

Stila In the Light Eyeshadow Palette, $39.

Last week, I wrote about Sephora’s Beauty Insider Holiday It Kits: free with any online Sephora purchase of $25 or more. I chose the “In the Glow” It Kit, which came complete with a bunch of deluxe sample-size makeup, skincare and fragrance products. In my kit I received a sample “card” of the Stila In the Light Eyeshadow Palette and I loved it. I was about to order a product from Birchbox (Mary-Lou Manizer from theBalm cosmetics – the most perfect highlighter I have ever used), and I saw that they carried this Stila palette, so I threw that into my online shopping cart as well and decided to write a product review on the Stila In the Light Eyeshadow Palette.

Product review of Stila In the Light Eyeshadow Palette. HUSH Beauty blog: Product reviews, tips, tricks and more. Makeup & Beauty blog.

Stila In the Light Eyeshadow Palette, $39.

The palette comes in natural packaging – very cute and to the point. It includes 10 eyeshadows, one Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eyeliner in Damsel (a beautiful deep, dark brown), and one “lookbook” that gives you instructions on how to create certain eyeshadow looks using the colors and eyeliner in the palette.

Product review of Stila In the Light Eyeshadow Palette. HUSH Beauty blog, beauty product reviews, news, celebrity beauty and more.

Stila’s In the Light Eyeshadow Palette, $39, comes with a lookbook to create different looks using the colors in the palette.

This palette is a true “natural colors” palette. I know that many of you swear by Urban Decay’s Naked Palettes, but I bought the Stila one because I was so impressed by the consistency and staying power of these colors. Don’t get me wrong, I love Urban Decay‘s eyeshadows, but I fell in love with this Stila palette because of the range of colors it includes. It can be compared to UD’s original Naked Palette in that it has both warm and cool colors, but I think Stila’s are the absolute perfect shades.

Product review of Stila In the Light Eyeshadow Palette at HUSH Beauty - a beauty blog filled with product reviews, makeup news, tips, tricks, celebrity beauty and more.

Stila In the Light Eyeshadow Palette, $39.

This palette also has a wonderful mix of shimmery colors and matte colors. I am a sucker for shimmer shades on my eyes, and I never really owned perfect matte colors. Finally, with this palette, I get the best of both worlds. “Bare” and “Bliss” are two absolutely perfect nude matte eyeshadow colors, while “Sandstone” (light cocoa) and “Ebony” (black) are darker matte colors that you can use for the sultry, smoky eye look. “Kitten” and “Bubbly” can be mixed with the lighter matte colors for a shimmery nude look, while “Sunset” (canyon pink), “Gilded Gold” (golden brown) and “Luster” (dark aubergine) can be used in the crease of your eyelid as slightly darker shimmer colors.

Night Sky” is a beautiful grey-blue, and I know that many of you might shy away from blues, but this is a true “natural” blue color that can really make your eyes pop if used properly. I recommend using it on the lid, with “Ebony” in the crease for a very glamourous look on a night out.

This palette also comes with a full-sized eyeliner, Stila’s Smudge Stick Waterproof Eyeliner in Damsel. I only ever wear dark-colored liners, and this deep, dark brown is a perfect shade. I recently raved about Chanel’s Stylo Yeux Waterproof Eyeliner in a HUSH Beauty Seal of Approval post, and this eyeliner from Stila is actually a wonderful alternative. It glides on smooth, just like the Chanel pencil, and it has serious staying power. I never tried Stila’s eyeliner up until now and I am impressed and very happy with it.

Stila’s In the Light Eyeshadow Palette can be purchased for $39 from Stila’s website, Sephora, Birchbox, ULTA and anywhere else that carries Stila products. Let me know if you try it out 🙂


product of the week: product review of too faced tinted beauty balm (b.b. cream)

Too Faced Beauty Balm in Creme Glow Product Review. Photo courtesy of Sephora.

Too Faced Beauty Balm in Creme Glow ($32). Photo courtesy of Sephora.

Even though Too Faced’s Tinted Beauty Balm is Product of the Week this week, it could easily be categorized under “What We’re Wearing” or even a HUSH Beauty Seal of Approval product since it has quickly become one of my absolute favorite staples in my daily makeup routine. This is the first beauty balm (BB cream) I have used and I just recently integrated this type of product into my daily beauty routine a few months ago. I am currently on my second tube of Too Faced’s Tinted Beauty Balm and, unless I try a sample of some other brand of BB Cream that I absolutely adore, I don’t see myself switching up brands anytime soon.

So, of course, I decided to feature this product as Product of the Week and write a product review on Too Faced’s Tinted Beauty Balm. BB Creams have only just recently (this year) made their appearance in Western markets. For years, women in east and southeast Asian countries like South Korea and Japan have been using BB creams (blemish balms) on their face to achieve that babydoll look of healthy, porcelain-like skin (much unlike western markets where the tanned look has been prevalent for the last few years).

BB creams have finally migrated west where they are being released by high-end brands (like Too Faced, Smashbox and Clinique) and, most recently, drugstore brands like Maybelline and Garnier. They now come in a broad spectrum of colors for a wider range of skin tones.

I tried out Too Faced’s Tinted Beauty Balm first, and I am perfectly satisfied with it. You can wear this BB cream alone as a tinted moisturizer or layer it over primer and under foundation (which is what I do). This multi-benefit skincare product has become a staple in my daily beauty routine for plenty of reasons. First, I am constantly looking for products that will truly give me that dewy, glowing look on my face. Too Faced’s Tinted Beauty Balm does just that and more. I don’t have to use as much foundation because this BB cream leaves a tint on your skin thanks to its light-diffusing pigments, leaving my skin smooth and radiant.

This beauty balm also boasts an anti-aging, multi-mineral complex that primes, prevents damage, promotes cell health, strengthens skin elasticity and enhances luminosity. I still use a primer (Smashbox’s Photo Finish Luminizing Primer which gives that radiant, dewy finish that I love) as a perfect base for my makeup and then I add a little bit of foundation (Urban Decay’s Naked Skin) to complete the flawless, radiant, luminous look.

The next components to this beauty balm are oil-free hydration and SPF 20 sun protection. It is also hypo-allergenic and “soothing for all skin types.”

Still not convinced? Well, if you aren’t really a fan of heavy makeup on your face, Too Faced’s Tinted Beauty Balm is a wonderful alternative for foundation (liquid or powder form). With four glowing shades, this BB cream evens out skin tone and deposits color to blur imperfections on your face. It leaves your face feeling hydrated and refreshed, and contains good-for-you mineral ingredients like Magnesium, Potassium and Zinc, as well as Ginseng and Ginko Biloba. It also contains Vitamins A & E for nourishing and Chamomile to smooth.

You can buy Too Faced’s Tinted Beauty Balm from Sephora, Too Faced’s website and ULTA for $32. I’m sure you can find it in other stores or other online beauty boutiques for the same price. If you happen to try it out, let me know what you think!


HUSH Beauty Seal of Approval: Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Ebene Product Review

Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Ebene Photo courtesy of Chanel. Chanel eyeliner product review makeup and beauty blog HUSH Beauty makeup product reviews.

Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Ebene. Photo courtesy of Chanel.

For my first HUSH Beauty Seal of Approval post, I chose the one makeup staple that I absolutely cannot live without: Chanel’s Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner. Seal of Approval posts are the ones about my personal, tried-and-true favorite products; the cosmetics that I wear on a daily basis and the products that I immediately go to the store to replace as soon as I run out.

I have been using this eyeliner by Chanel for about three years now (if not more) and I honestly don’t ever see myself using a different liner for my eyes. I tried to switch it up a few months back and bought Urban Decay’s 24-7 Glide-On Eye Pencil, but went right back to the Chanel pencil. Like the Urban Decay pencil, Chanel’s Long-Lasting Eyeliner glides on smooth and really lasts for hours. UD’s pencil‘s pencil is a pretty good alternative (and $11 cheaper), but it’s certainly not the same.  

Chanel’s Long Lasting Eyeliner certainly lives up to its name – my top lash line hardly smears and I rarely need a touch-up. I do, however, touch up my bottom lash line a few times throughout the day, but this is mostly because my eyes tear a lot (thanks to awful allergies). 

This liner is a twist-up plastic “pencil” – you twist it up when you want to use it and back down when you’re done. The BEST part about this eyeliner is that there is a mini sharpener at the end so you can constantly have that same fresh point. For my lids, on my upper lash line, I don’t need to use a liner brush (unless I mess up real bad) because this liner glides right on, creating a perfect, straight line (and I am definitely not the most precise person when it comes to applying my top liner). 

Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner Colors. Photo courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue,

Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner Colors. Photo courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue,

I don’t usually stray far from my basic black eyeliner color (I use Chanel’s Waterproof Long-Lasting Liner in Ebene, a perfect neutral-black), but I have used this liner in the dark chocolate color, Espresso, and yielded the same positive results. Espresso is a rich, dark brown color. The liner comes in 14 different colors year-round (12 of which are pictured above) and Chanel often puts out seasonal, limited edition colors as well. 

This liner is a little pricey ($30but it’s definitely worth it for those of you out there who don’t mind splurging on makeup that you will use day in and day out. I have used so many different eyeliners over the years and I constantly find myself coming back to this one. This liner has true waterproof staying power and you can constantly keep the tip sharpened to a perfect point with the mini sharpener found on the bottom of the liner. No more messy shavings, no more uneven liner on your top lash line and – best of all – no smudges.

PRODUCT REVIEWED: Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner
PRICE: $30
AVAILABLE AT: All major department stores that carry Chanel 
cosmetics (Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom, Saks) as well as I’m sure plenty of other stores carry this product, but these are just the first few that popped into my head 🙂 


product of the week: wen by chaz dean healthy hair kit review

Wen Healthy Hair Kit. Photo copyright Hush Beauty 2012.

Wen Healthy Hair Kit. Photo copyright Hush Beauty 2012.

I have been meaning to buy the Wen by Chaz Dean Healthy Hair Kit for a few months now — I’ve heard rave reviews online, from friends and even from my own hair stylist. I finally got it, and I must say, this product has dramatically changed my hair for the better.

I just ran out of my first Wen kit (it comes with a 30-day supply and really lasts about a month), so while I wait for my new shipment, I have been using a regular sulfate-free “cleansing conditioner” I found at CVS, Agadir Sulfate-Free Argan Oil Daily Moisturizing Conditioner ($15.74, CVS). I will never go back to a regular shampoo & conditioner routine.

I bought my first Wen kit from Sephora, the Healthy Hair Kit ($39.50,, which I am reviewing in this post (after the jump). I ordered my second kit, the Deluxe Replenishing Kit ($34.95, Wen Haircare), from Wen’s website, which is a cheaper more-bang-for-your-buck option, and I am currently waiting for it to be delivered. 

Read my review of the Wen Healthy Hair Kit and about all the products in the kit after the jump. 

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