Holiday Gift Guide #4: Makeup Edition!

Hey y’all!

December is officially under way and the holidays are going to be upon us before we know it. It’s easy to fall into the trap of getting pretty stressed out around this time of year — there can be a lot of pressure leading up to the holiday season, and it can be a crazy busy time for all of us and the year comes to an end. However, the holidays really shouldn’t be stressful — they’re supposed to be a time of joy, after all! — but ya know, sometimes that’s easier said than done.

It’s particularly easy this year to let the holidays sneak up on you before you even realize what’s happening, leaving you unprepared. After all, what even is time anymore in COVID? Do any of us truly know what day it is? Probably not. So if you haven’t completed your shopping yet, don’t worry — you’re definitely not alone. Cut yourself a little slack — it’s been a crazy year. If you’re still needing to get some shopping done and are in need of some ideas, I have you covered. Almost every item on this list is good for all makeup users, regardless of skin tone or skin type. As well, all these items can be found at Sephora, which tends to ship pretty quickly (within Canada, at least), so you’ll have plenty time to pick out some items and get them shipped and ready. (And of course, if the person you’re buying gifts for isn’t super into makeup, you can always check out my previous gift guides on Self Care, Skincare, and Lifestyle!).

Urban Decay All Nighter Pollution Protection Setting Spray

I figured that I’d start off with a product that truly would work for anyone on your list, regardless of their skin tone, skin type, or preferences. This setting spray by Urban Decay is a total classic, and one of the best products I own. One coat of this stuff, and your makeup will not move even a bit all day. Not even a little. It won’t fade, smudge, or wear off in areas that are oily or even high-contact (ie. under your mask). This stuff WORKS. Plus, it can be universally gifted to anyone who wears makeup — they’ll be sure to love it.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Huda Beauty Obsessions Palettes

Obsession palettes was a super fitting name for this product, because I’m completely obsessed with them. These palettes come in a wide variety of colours and themes, from neon, and pastel, to nude and jewel tones. These palettes are nice and pocket sized, making them great for compact makeup collections or travel — but don’t let their tiny size fool you, they pack a lot of pigment, making them last endlessly. These are some of my favourite eyeshadow palettes that I’ve ever owned, and I couldn’t recommend them more as a gift.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Eyeliner

Stila’s liquid liner is, IMO, the penultimate liquid eyeliner. This liners been my go-to since high school, and it’s never let me down. This liner is SUPER pigmented, and comes with a solid felt tip that makes it easy to apply. Seriously — this liner comes out in the blackest black I’ve ever seen an eyeliner come. For any winged liner fans in your life, this liner will make the PERFECT gift.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Primer & NARS Pro-Prime Eyeshadow Base

This is another gift that’s pretty universally good for any makeup lover in your life, regardless of what they’re into or they’re skin tone/skin type. Makeup primer is something all makeup users likely use, and if not — they might like to give these a try! These are, hands down, the two most effective primers I’ve ever used in my life and I could not recommend either of them more. Milk Makeup’s Hydro grip primer is hydrating, lightweight, and provides a smoothing effect. Most importantly — it holds your makeup in place ALL day (even under a mask!). As well, NARS’s Pro-Prime shadow base is the only shadow primer I’ve ever used that holds your shadow perfectly in place for hours on end — it doesn’t crease, smudge, or fade (and I’ve accidentally fallen asleep with it on before). These both will make great gifts for any makeup lover you’re looking to spoil — no matter how picky they are.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out Milk Makeup’s primer and NARS’s shadow base online at Sephora!

Kaja Mochi Pop Bouncy Blush

This is a product I tried recently and totally fell in love with. This little cream-powder blush is easy to apply and makes a great everyday, simple-look blush. It’s cute, shimmery, and has a super-unique formula so that, contrary to other cream blushes, doesn’t stay sticky or need to be set the same way. Even if you have someone on your list that isn’t crazy into makeup that you’re still needing a gift for, this blush makes a great addition to any simple, every-day makeup collection.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder

This is another product I tried recently and was blown away by. I’m a big fan of the “dewey” makeup look, so I love adding in a little shimmer wherever I can. This finishing powder is meant to be applied over your face (or just areas you’re hoping to add a little extra glow to) after you’ve finished your makeup to add just a little extra shine. It really adds just a small shimmer, so you won’t look shiny or oily, but just a little dewey — and it makes my makeup look even more flawless and natural, IMO. It comes in a couple shades, but it isn’t like foundation where you’ll need to know someone’s skin tones/under tones to buy a perfect match — especially since it is so sheer. If you have a dewey/natural makeup lover in your life who’s always looking for a little extra glow, I could NOT recommend this finishing powder more.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer

Is there a soul out there who’s tried Fenty’s Universal Lip Luminzer who HASN’T loved it? Seriously, this stuff is the best and I’d own it in every shade if I could. Fenty Beauty is so high quality and made to have products that are flattering for all. The original and light pink shades of this gloss are classic shades you can’t go wrong with, and the two clear shades look like they’d be a fantastic addition to any collection (I’m hoping to get my hands on them myself!). These glosses are long-lasting, and they don’t bleed into your skin at all. 10/10, would make a fantastic gift.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

Sephora Luxe False Lashes

This last one is a great for any lash-lovers, or any makeup users who’ve been wishing to test out lashes but don’t where to start. These lashes are the BEST, most realistic lashes I have ever used. They’re fluffy and beautiful, plus they come with a clear strip that’s very flexible — making it work well with all eye shapes. I find that these are great beginner lashes, since they have such flexible strips and fit so easily along your lash line. Honestly, if my lashes could look like mine do when I’m wearing these 24/7, I’d be the happiest I’ve ever been.

Sound like the perfect gift? Check out this product online at Sephora!

And that wraps up this year’s gift guide! I hope that you’ve all enjoyed it — I really put in a lot of effort putting this together for you all this year. Hopefully you’ve all got good, safe, socially-distanced plan for the holidays this year — whether that means with the family under your roof, your SO, your roommates, or even alone. Hopefully, along with this online list of gift ideas, you’ll be able to stay home and safe this holiday season.

Sending you all so much love right now! I have a number of exciting posts planned out for you over the final weeks of 2020, so stay tuned for that! I have a number of posts lined up, from a FabFitFun unboxing, to a little round up of 2020, a look back at 2020 and my very first ever ColourPop haul. I’m so excited to share them all with you, and I hope you’re all just as excited to read them!

Much love y’all — please stay safe this holiday season!

Xo,

Meredith

Trends I’m Loving: Beach Vacay Edition!

Hey y’all!

So to start off, I have some super exciting news to share — I’m officially a FabFitFun affiliate! I don’t even have to tell you guys how excited I am about this, as I’m constantly referencing products and brands they introduced me to and raving about what I received in my boxes each season. If you want to get in on the fun, click here to head over to the FabFitFun site and get $10 off your first box when you use the code SPRINGLOVE!

(As a side note, if you’re curious about what type of products you may receive in a FabFitFun box, you can check out these sneak peek photos of the Spring Box, or my past Winter and Fall Unboxings to get a better idea!)

But for now, back to today’s content — for my 100th (!!!) blog post, I’m going to be sharing all my favourite fashion and makeup trends for a stylish and fun beach getaway. While I love how trendy and cool fall and winter fashion can be, summer is my favourite season and I just love how simple and easy-going summer style is. In my opinion, a great vacay wardrobe should incorporate both that care-free summer feeling, as well as taking every opportunity to try out as many new trends as possible (as tragically, vacation time is limited so you may as well take advantage). Vacation style, ideally, should therefore be cute, casual, and above all else — comfy. I mean, you’re taking a break right? So get comfortable and relax! (And if you don’t have any plans to take a vacation any time soon, feel free to keep reading — I’m going to be rocking these trends all summer too!).

A Cute Peach Lip

Peach tones have been the summery trend I’ve become obsessed with lately. I won’t lie, I’ve avoided peach the last few years — when it gets too bright and coral-hued I find it clashes with my skin tone and can look unflattering. However, I’ve been sticking to lighter, more neutral tones lately and I have to say — it is SO cute. Just look at this — is it not the perfect summer shade?

Of course, peach can be incorporated into any aspect of beachy summer looks — I got a peach manicure to match before I flew down to Puerto Vallarta as well! But a cute peach lip in my new fave. My favourite peachy lip looks are Kylie Cosmetic’s lip kit in Dirty Peach. (I love using Kylie Cosmetic’s Endless Summer Lipstick as a top coat to this to add some shine, but apparently they no longer carry the shade. However, if super-matte looks aren’t your thing, MAC Cosmetic’s Frost Lipstick in shade Skew would make a great topcoat as well!).

Some On-Trend Accessories

Okay, so cute hair accessories in 2020 isn’t really news. You can’t go more than a minute on Pinterest or Insta without seeing some super cute hair clip inspo. However, this was my first time really getting to test this style out personally. You can find me wearing chunky hair clips just about every day now — I’m pretty much addicted.

I brought endless hair accessories with me on my trip to test out, and I’ve discovered all of my faves. Obviously, oversized clips are all the rage right now — I got mine from H&M, and personally I think they’re adorable. If you’re looking to be perfectly on trend for your next getaway, I’d totally recommend checking out their accessory stock, as well as Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie for the cutest pre-tied bow scrunchies and scarves.

Glossy, Glittery Lips

You guys all know by now that I’m a gloss gal through and through — I just love the look! Now, I’ll be the first to admit super glossy looks don’t work out perfectly for every day on the beach (Is it super cute? Totally. But does your hair end up getting stuck in it every two minutes? Also yes.).

That being said, it still makes SUCH a cute beach look for the right occasion — especially for those uber-glossy, glittery looks that lipstick just can’t achieve. I found the perfect gloss for this getaway at Kylie Cosmetics in shade Oh You Fancy?. This gloss is just about as glittery as it gets, and it’s got a cute clear/peachy hue. It totally adds to a peach lip look and gives that perfect shine that helps add to your glowy beach look.

A Cute Bikini Collection

Every so often, I like to grab a few new bikinis to keep up with the latest trends. I find that bathing suit trends can be super distinct to each season and always changing, so it’s great to pick up a few so you look super on-trend before any beach vacation.

My personal faves this season are stylish snake prints and the return of bold neons — especially if you’re rocking a tan. As well, any bandeau or tank-style top is always just so cute. There’s endless stores that carry trendy bikinis, but some good ones to check out are ASOS, Free People and Revolve.

A Pinterest-Worthy Beach Hat

Looks that are cute AND practical? Count me in. I’ve really fallen in love with the wide-brim beach hat trend lately — for starters, simply because of how adorable it is. But Pinterest-famous vibes aside, this hat really does help protect both your eyes and sensitive face from the sun, which makes it a win in my books. While I bought this hat while away on my trip (it’s surprisingly hard to find vacation accessories in February) this style of hat is a staple that, in a few months, you’ll be able to find just about anywhere. While I may not have bought it from any commercial store, I’d recommend checking out H&M’s stock when the time comes — I really am falling in love with their accessories!

A Reliable Fake Tan

I don’t know about you all, but I’m not a fan of tanning. Only problem is — I love looking tan. You see my problem here? Maybe this is my personal opinion, but I find lying in direct sun fun for about half an hour before it starts getting really unpleasant. Plus there’s so many other downsides, such as the potential of uneven tanning, as well as sun damage — both on the cosmetic level, as well as damage to your skin’s health. While, yes, you could just load up on sunscreen, isn’t it easier to be in the sun/shade/indoors at your leisure and let your fake tanner do the heavy lifting? Who knows — maybe I’m just lazy or bitter because I burn super easily, but I consider this to be a vacation essential. (If you’re curious, my go-to is St. Tropez’s Classic Bronzing Lotion).

A Fresh Take On The Classic White Beach Dress

I should start this one off my ensuring you all I have nothing against white summery dresses, obviously. I love them! But you have all summer long to wear all the white dresses your heart desires, and only a short time away on vacation to really make a statement.

I’ve been obsessed with this cream-coloured romper ever since I bought it on sale at Aritzia at the end of last season, and I’ve been dying to show it off. I just love how it manages to be cute and classic while also switching up the whole usual white dress idea. If rompers aren’t really your thing, you could also give a two-piece set a try! Personally, I can’t wait for summer to roll around so I can go shopping for some cute matching shirt-and-short combos.

A Solid Waterproof Mascara

I could go super into detail here, or you could just check out my latest Thursday Favourite’s post about why Too Faced’s Better Than Sex Waterproof is the ultimate travel mascara. Either way, if you’re going to be swimming, sunning, or sweating — you’re going to need this.

That’s it for my little tropical fashion moment — but the good news is as of today we’re officially one step closer to spring! Happy March, everyone, and if you’re just so over this whole “winter” thing (and don’t have time to plan a getaway), just 21 more days until we’re all free of it. I don’t know about you guys, but I, for one, could not be more excited.

I hope you’re all having a restful and relaxing Sunday and are gearing up for a good week — personally, I’m taking a night off to relax as I have yet another crazy week ahead. If only vacation lasted forever, right?

Much love,

Meredith

Holiday Gift Guide #3: Makeup Edition!

Hey y’all! Happy Sunday!

Today I’m sharing my third and final segment of my Holiday Gift Guide series with you guys. Holiday season is officially in full swing, so if you haven’t gotten the chance to start your Christmas shopping — now is the time! If you’re still feeling a little lost on what to gift this year and need some inspo, I’ve got you covered. I put so much effort and care into this series, and I really hope you all have gotten some great gift ideas out of it!

This week, I’m going to be sharing some of my all-time favourite makeup products. A lot of these products haven’t even been featured on my Favourites segment yet, but Holiday season is here, and I personally think a lot of these would make fantastic gifts for any makeup lover. I just decided I couldn’t wait and had to share — but stay tuned for more in-depth posts on a lot of these products coming in the new year!

For A Makeup Lover Who’s Always On The Go

Huda Beauty Obsession Palettes

For any of your travel-savvy makeup loving friends, consider gifting them a Huda Beauty Obsessions palette! Not only are these eyeshadow palettes compact and perfect for travel — they’re all absolutely stunning. The best part about these palettes is that there’s a colour story for everyone. They have all the classics such as warm brown, mauve and smoky for a classic bold look. Nude colour stories for every skin tone. Neon for anyone who loves a bold, trendy look. Gem toned palettes in five different colours for whatever colour preference anyone may have. AND they’re all super pigmented, smooth and stunning. What more could you ask for from the perfect gift?

Feeling inspired? Check out Huda Beauty’s Neon, Nude and Classic Obsession Palettes at Sephora!

For Your Favourite Lipstick Fanatic

Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kit and Glosses

No makeup look is complete without adding your favourite lip product as the final step. Ever since I took the leap and finally purchased myself some Kylie Cosmetic lip products, I’ve been obsessed. The Lip Kits in particular make great gifts, as they come as a complete set (lip product and liner) and come in a variety of formulas — such as matte and velvet liquid lipstick. As well, for any gloss or classic lipstick fans in your life, Kylie Cosmetics offers a large range of both products that are absolutely FANTASTIC additions to any makeup collection. Their lipsticks are smooth and creamy, and their lip glosses are SO pigmented it’s insane. As well, you can ensure any gift is on-brand for the holiday season by checking out Kylie’s stunning holiday collection!

Feeling inspired? Check out Kylie Cosmetic’s Lipsticks, Lip Kits and Lip Gloss online!

For Someone Who Loves To Splurge On The Staples

Dior Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara

Mascara makes a great gift as it is a solid staple as far as makeup goes. While sometimes it can be tricky to gift makeup if you don’t know someone’s preferred products, colours and formulas — you really can’t go wrong gifting a classic black mascara. If you’re looking to gift someone makeup but are worried about buying the wrong colour or product — consider gifting the Dior Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara! Splurging on an expensive mascara makes a great gift for anyone as they may not necessarily get to spend as much on a mascara for themselves regularly. I’ve written about this mascara a little more in depth previously in my Favourites segment, but this mascara really is fantastic at creating a flawless, natural look. It does an amazing job at curling and lengthening lashes without clumping up or getting “spidery”. Plus, you can feel good about buying a makeup gift that’s pretty universal and just about anyone could enjoy!

Feeling inspired? Check out the Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara, or Dior’s Mascara Line at Sephora!

For Someone Who Can’t Leave The House Until They’ve Perfected Their Liner

Tarte Clay Pot Waterproof Liner

Eyeliner is another makeup product that makes a great gift for someone when you’re unsure about their specific makeup preferences. Just like mascara, though, it’s pretty hard to go wrong with a classic black eyeliner. For any winged liner fans in your life, or anyone looking to experiment but struggles with drawing on the perfect wing, consider gifting Tarte Cosmetic’s Clay Pot waterproof liner! I just recently received this liner in my Tarte Cosmetics custom makeup kit, but I’m already conviced it would make a fantastic gift. First of all, winged liner tends to be a lot easier to apply with a brush than it is with a felt-tip marker, making this great for beginners. As well, this stuff isn’t kidding about being waterproof — once it’s on, it’ll last all day. No smudging, nothing. No matter who you’re gifting for, eyeliner newbie or pro, there’s really no going wrong with this classic black gel liner.

Feeling inspired? Check out Tarte’s Clay Pot Eyeliner on Tarte or at Sephora!

For Someone Who Loves To Highlight EVERYTHING

CoverFX Custom Enhancer Drops

For any highlighter addicts in your life, CoverFX’s Custom Enhancer Drops are a must-gift. These drops are so versatile and can add a stunning glow to just about any aspect of your makeup. You can mix them in with foundation for a dewy all-over glow, add them below or above foundation for either a natural sheen or high beam highlight, and they can even be mixed into lip products, eyeshadow looks, body makeup — you name it. If you’re looking for the perfect gift for someone OBSESSED with highlighter, you really can’t go wrong with these. They come in so many colours, there really should be one to fit anyone of any skin tone. Plus, these really are the most pigmented highlighters I’ve ever come across — so they last forever (a little goes a REALLY long way). As well, their multi-dimensional glow is absolutely stunning. You can’t go wrong

Feeling inspired? Check out CoverFX’s Custom Enhancer Drops at Sephora!

For Anyone Looking For Perfect, Bushy Brows

Benefit Gimme Brow Gel and Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz

Natural, bushy brows have been all the rage this year. If you’re looking to gift brow makeup to someone, I’d absolutely recommend Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz Pencil + Benefit’s Gimme Brow+ Volumizing Eyebrow Gel. If you have someone who’s been looking to up their brow game while also maintaining natural looking brows, this really is the perfect duo. I’ve been using it myself for ages now, and it never fails me. The Brow Wiz pencil is perfect for shading in sparse areas, lining the brows and even adding in hair-like strokes. Benefit’s Gimme Brow Gel tops the look off perfectly by defining brow hairs and locking them in place, ensuring they don’t stray. They come in a wide range of colours, making them perfect for just about anyone too.

Feeling inspired? Check out Anastasia Beverly Hill’s Brow Wiz Pencil and Benefit’s Gimme Brow+ Volumizing Eyebrow Gel at Sephora!

For Someone Looking To Up Their Brush Game

Eyeshadow and Blush Brushes from MAC Cosmetics

You can have all the best makeup in the world, but it still won’t apply well if you don’t have great brushes to go with it. A lot of people avoid spending too much on brushes as it can be hard to see the point — however, it really is vital to flawless makeup application. There’s all kinds of benefits to spending a little more on brushes too — they last longer, shed less and stay soft (as long as you care for them properly). For someone who’s in need of a couple good brushes to add to their collection, consider gifting them some brushes from MAC! I’ve had many of these brushes for years now, and haven’t needed to replace them.

If you need suggestions on a couple staples, I’d definitely recommend:

  • #217 and #221 for blending eyeshadow
  • #239 for packing shadow onto the lid
  • #150 for setting and face powder
  • #168 for bronzer application
  • #116 for blush application
  • #184 for highlighter application
  • #263 for winged liner or lipstick

These are some of my favourite and most commonly used brushes — I use so many of these every day, and they’ve lasted me so well. They apply makeup flawlessly too — so if you know someone just starting out with makeup, or in need of a couple new brushes, they’d make the perfect gift.

Feeling inspired? Check out MAC’s brush collection on their website! I’ve also linked each specific brush on the list — just click the number to view it on MAC’s website!

For Someone Who Likes To Go Au Natural

Glossier Balm DotCom

For anyone you’re looking to gift for who likes to keep their makeup a little more on the natural side, Glossier’s Balm DotCom’s make the perfect gift! These lip balms are super hydrating and effective — they’re one of my all-time favourites. They make a great gift in the winter to help stop chapped lips in their tracks (and they come in a wide range of colours!). They help give a fantastic, natural tint — making them a great gift for anyone looking to keep things cute and simple. Whether it’s for some who likes minimal makeup 24/7, or someone who just likes a natural look for everyday matters, you can’t go wrong with these. Just for their hydrating aspect alone, they make a fantastic little gift collection or addition to any gift!

Feeling inspired? Check out the Balm DotCom line at Glossier’s website!

I hope you all enjoyed this series — I really enjoyed writing and sharing it with you. Christmas shopping can be challenging, and coming up with ideas isn’t always easy. The holiday season can already be busy enough as is, so I really hope I managed to share some great ideas with you guys and take a little load off so you can spend your time and energy enjoying the holidays, rather than stressing. (If you need more inspo, be sure to check out Part One and Part Two of my series as well!)

Don’t forget to stay tuned for next weeks post — after all, it’s my favourite part of the start of each new season! While it is a little delayed (as I received my box two days ago), I’m going to be unboxing my Winter FabFitFun box for y’all! I’m super excited about the winter box — I really loved the products I received last year and am VERY much looking forward to whatever self-care and cozy vibes this box brings.

Happy Sunday y’all, hope you guys all had an amazing weekend and are gearing up to have a great week!

Much love,

Meredith