Hello everyone! I hope you all had a great start to your 2016 and an awesome first month! I missed last month’s favorites because I was super busy, so I have a lot to catch up on for this month!

Bolt Blogs January Favorites

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector – Moonstone: I got this mini size in the Radiant Glow Collection from Ulta, which is still available. You can read a full review on the kit here. I’ve been super into using this as my main highlight and then going over it with Champagne Pop to really add a lot of light. I know I don’t need pearl, but the obsession with these is strong…

Wet 'n Wild Contour Dulce de Leche Swatch

Wet ‘n Wild Contouring Palette – Dulce de Leche: I’ve really been searching for a cooler toned contour color but don’t do a proper contour often enough to make a splurge on something high end (I normally just lightly contour with Chocolate Soleil). When I found this at walmart, I was super excited to give it a try. The tone is perfect for me. This does kick up some powder, but it’s not a huge deal. I would recommend starting light and then building the color because it is pretty pigmented, but blends beautifully. The light shade is a little too heavy to set my under-eyes with, but I use it to set my t-zone. Wet ‘n Wild nailed this one. I really like using it with the BH Cosmetics brush. I got it in a set and unfortunately it isn’t sold individually but wanted to show what I’ve been using.

BareMinerals 5 in 1 BB – Radiant Sand: I think these are the most underrated beauty product on the market. I got the color Blushing Apricot and after falling in love got the color Radiant Sand. This color is so beautiful if you take a minute to create a nice gradient with layering and a fluffy synthetic brush. The formula is the perfect consistency and stays in place on my hooded, oily lids all day long!

It! Cosmetics CC+ – Light: I am so in love with this CC Cream. My only complaint is that the color is pretty off, but that’s where the next product comes in. Fair was too ashy but light is too dark…I really wish they had more colors in this product. Anyway, the coverage on this for a CC cream is unbelievable. Obviously it breaks up a little faster than a foundation but using a primer really helps.

The Body Shop Lightening Drops Swatch

The Body Shop Lightening Drops: When these drops first came out, I lost it. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten the lightest shade in a foundation and it’s still too dark! The Body Shop came out with Lightening and Darkening drops so you can adjust your foundation shades instead of having multiple shades in a foundation to fit you throughout the year. My only complaint with these is that it does make the product you’re working with a little more matte. Since the lightening shades have a pink undertone, I’m unsure how it would work on those who have warmer undertones.

L'Oreal la Palette Nude 1 Swatches

L’Oreal La Palette Nude 1: When I picked up this palette for $3 (read how here), I wasn’t going to be too upset if I didn’t like it, but there are a few colors in here I really enjoy. Overall, I don’t think I’d spend $20 on this palette but if you can use coupons or get a sale, I think it’s worth considering. I wish the colors were a little smoother to blend. There is one shade in the palette that is a total standout – it’s a bronze shade with a lot of brown and a gorgeous gold shimmer.

Nip+Fab Viper Venom Primer: Nip+Fab kindly sent me this primer and their new frown fix, which is also from the same line. The primer is very cooling and even a little hydrating but really smoothes out my skin and helps the makeup stick. I like that it doesn’t have a silicon feel because I hate primers that feel slippery.

If you made it to the end, thank you! Those are all of my favorites this month and I would love to hear yours! xoxo

Happy Monday! Today I’m bringing you a very exciting review on the company and products provided by Choix! Choix is the “makeup counter delivered to you,” which is fitting because the French name translates to “Choice” in English.

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I love subscription boxes and have reviewed a few before, so I was very excited when Choix reached out and asked if I’d like to try out some new makeup. In a nutshell, Choix let’s you try samples of high-end makeup for $5 a sample (free shipping) and if you end up purchasing the product, that $5 goes toward the product. If you want monthly boxes, it costs $20 for 5 samples and you get to choose what you get every month, which is probably the biggest advantage to Choix over other boxes. For more information, you can read up on their rewards program and other details here.

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The Packaging: The mailing box was very sturdy, so I would imagine it’d be very hard for anything to break! Very impressed right of the bat!

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The Product: The products are repackaged into sample containers just like they would be at a makeup counter for you to try. I picked out some things I’ve always wanted to try (especially the Chanel foundation) but have always been too afraid to spend the money on. I’m one of those people who feels very guilty returning a product if I don’t like it (even though most stores allow you to), so I always like to be sure about a purchase before I make it.

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The Value: First, how cute does this look? Everything was secured down in the box along with some little tools. There’s definitely enough product in each to use once, probably more.

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Here’s an up-close look at the products so you can see what you’re getting. I think I’ll be able to use all of the samples multiple times, except for the Chanel bronzer. I put the samples next to some more commonly known products for scale (the eyeshadow is Urban Decay).

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Final Thoughts: So, do I think Choix is worth the price? Yes!

I think the ideal customer for Choix is…

  • Someone who doesn’t live around a department store and can’t otherwise try samples of these products (I don’t live close to a major department store to try many of the high-end brands Choix offers)
  • Someone just getting into makeup
  • Someone who wants to give a great gift

I don’t see myself getting a box every month, but I would definitely get a Choix box if I had a wedding or big event so I could have a full face of crazy expensive makeup for only $20!

Thank you to Ellie and the Choix team for the box! Head on over to their website to drool over some Chanel, Dior, Bobbi Brown, Nars…you get the picture!

I wanted to create a makeup bag that would be ideal for someone just getting into makeup or a minimalist. A lot of times, you can find things even cheaper with promos (especially CVS) and sales (sign up for the e.l.f.’s emails). Obviously, leave out anything you don’t need/like to customize it. I hope you enjoy!

$100 Makeup Bag

Foundation: L’oreal True Match 9.99 | Wide shade range to suit a variety of skin tones

BB Cream: Olay Fresh Effects BB Cream 13.99 | For those who want lighter coverage

Concealer: L’oreal True Match Super-Blendable Crayon 8.99

Under Eye Concealer: Maybelline Dream Lumi Highlighting Concealer 7.99

Powder: Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder 4.99 | To set and mattify

Bronzer: NYC Sunny Bronzer 2.79 | A classic bronzer with a loyal following

Blush: e.l.f. Studio Blush Palette 6.00 | 4 shade options in 1 palette

Eye Primer: NYX Shadow Base (3 Shades) 6.99

Eyebrow: Sonia Kashuk Tinted Brow Gel 5.99 | Tints and tames

Eyeshadow: Wet ’n Wild Walking on Eggshells 2.99 | Compliments every eye color

Eyeliner: Revlon ColorStay Eyeliner 7.99 | Defines and stays in place

Mascara: CoverGirl LashBlast Clump Crusher 6.99 | Builds volume and separates

Lip Balm/Stain: Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain 9.49 | Moisturizes and stains

Lipstick: NYX Lipstick 3.99 | 42 shades for Kissin’

GRAND TOTAL: $99.17

I know that with tax, this would be over $100, but I think it’s a pretty good start. Let me know, what are some of your drugstore must-haves?

August Favorites | boltblogs.com

Hello all! I’m still not back in an official posting routine quite yet but I wanted to share a few of my August Favorites!

This Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes mascara is amazing! Lots of length and separation but sometimes it smudged if I didn’t set my under eye concealer well. Other than that, no complaints.

Tarte Mascara | boltblogs.com

I’ve also been wearing my Nars lipgloss in Orgasm just by itself for the lips. For the face I was wearing my Physicians Formula BB Cream (a little thick but manageable) with my Benefit Cosmetics Erase Paste. For blush I just wanted a little color on the cheeks so I was picking up my Too Faced Sweetheart blush.

I hope everyone had a great month!

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I love e.l.f. makeup. While some of the products are hit or miss, there are some really great gems in all of the lines! Some of the products are still in the package because it came in two orders

Mineral Foundation (Light): I currently use BareMinerals, so when I saw this I wanted to give it a try. I’ll review it and do a thorough comparison to BareMinerals later.

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Mineral Eyeshadow Primer (Blush): I wanted an inexpensive primer because I use a one even when I don’t wear eyeshadow (I have oily lids and don’t want my mascara to smudge). This color is not how it is pictured on the website but I still like it.

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Studio Hydrating Under Eye Primer: This product looked very intriguing. The photo reminded me of my Benefit “That Gal” primer so I had to throw it in my cart. So far, the two seem relatively similar. I’ll do a review.

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Studio Moisturizing Lipstick (Coral Cutie): I’m loving the orange lip trend and wanted to give it a try without spending too much. The formula was creamier than I expected, a pleasant surprise. I’ll try and do a summer look with this bold color soon!

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Studio Concealer (Ivory): This color is too orange but I’ll play around and see if I can make it work.

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Studio Makeup Lock & Seal: I’ve started experimenting more with wearing my loose shadows wet as liner and I thought this would be a great product. Plus with summer coming up, a little extra staying power never hurt. So far, I really like how it works and think it definitely increases the staying power of my eye makeup.

Comes with a brush and small mixing pot

Comes with a brush and small mixing pot

Studio Tone Correcting Powder in Cool: The product is, eh. It is not the best quality powder and is pretty chalky. It’s a decent setting powder but I don’t see it “correcting.”

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When swirled together, the color is just an off white

Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Cream (St. Lucia): I am very impressed with this cream blush and bronzer! I like it a lot and definitely gives me a bronze glow without looking too dark.

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First (accidental) Bolt Blogs giveaway went to one of my roommates! My order came with two of this product, so congratulations and enjoy your perfectly sculpted cheek bones 😉

Studio Lip Definer & Shaper (natural/nude): I have mixed feelings about this. I like the rosy colored shade but it is not the creamiest of formulas. The defining side is much too shimmery, but I did use it under my brow bone and liked it.

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Bonus: One end has a built in sharpener in the cap! in Back to Basics and Pearls of Wisdom

Essential Smudge Pot in Back to Basics and Pearls of Wisdom: I originally just bought Back to Basics and was so impressed I ordered Pearls of Wisdom. The pigmentation in the white is not what the bronze is. I would pass on the Pearls of Wisdom. But the Back to Basics has great staying power and is blendable.

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Essential Eyelash Curler: I wanted an eyelash curler for my makeup bag like the concealer so for $1 this was perfect! Bonus: It came with an extra rubber pad.

Tell me, what are some of your favorite e.l.f products? Want me to review anything further in depth? Let me know!