It’s Sunday! Have you washed your brushes?

Here are the brushes I used this week.  I actually washed and conditioned my natural hair brushes!  I hadn’t conditioned them in ages.  I used my Daiso Cleanser For Puff and Sponge on my synthetic Sigma Kabuki and concealer brushes (it’s too harsh for natural hair brushes).  I used a gentle, SLS-free shampoo and a silicone free conditioner on the natural hair brushes (rinse extremely well if you do this).  All good!  They are sticking over the ledge of the shelf over an air conditioning vent.  ūüôā We are ready for next week! 

When was the last time you gave your brushes a little TLC? 


How to reshape a makeup brush 

So, yesterday, against my better judgement, I used a cleanser on my MAC 210 Precise Liner Brush that was probably too harsh.  I wanted to get out dried gel liner, so I used a cleanser I usually only use on synthetic brushes for really tough to get out emollient products (this is a natural hair brush).  Anyway, when I woke up today after letting it dry overnight, it was splayed all over the place and I was mad as hell, since this brush is new and I probably should have known better.  Anyway, I have used a method in the past for reshaping brushes with boiling water, so I thought I would give it a shot before giving up on a new brush.

I took an old beat up coffee cup (nice spoon marks there) and boiled water in the microwave.  I dipped the brush tip in for a few seconds…

Lifted the brush out, let it cool a couple seconds so as not to burn the crap out of myself, and re-shaped the brush tip with my fingertips.  DONE.  


It’s really that easy!  I’ve done this with the MAC 242 synthetic eyeshadow brush before too, I just made sure not to leave it in long enough to melt the bristles.  It works pretty well, if your brush is in a salvageable state.  Of course, sometimes you have to know when to let one go, LOL! 

FYI, you can do this with artist’s paint brushes, too! 

Hope this helps someone!  

How I learned to love the MAC 190 foundation brush

I’m a former MAC artist…ok, that was many years ago, but I still use some brushes by MAC (as well as many by other less expensive brands). ¬†The 190 foundation brush is a flat, paddle shaped foundation brush that has always vexed me a bit when I try to use it with liquid foundations, especially ones with a texture like Studio Fix Fluid that can be prone to streaking.

The MAC 190 foundation brush is a natural fiber brush (horse hair) and great for application of liquid and creams, but blending was where I was having a problem – this is because I was using back and forth “painting” type motions to work the product onto the skin and continued trying to blend this way. ¬†Eventually, I became disenchanted with my somewhat streaky results and stopped using this brush altogether, which sucks, because it’s expensive ($34.00 USD). ¬†One day I was feeling bummed out about it and started looking around YouTube for some tutorials on how to get better use from this brush. ¬†Low and behold, Wayne Goss (I love him!) had tips including using the side/tip to stipple and pat any streaky texture away once the product is on the skin, working in small areas of the face. ¬†This absolutely works wonderfully! ¬†I feel like I’m having a renewed love affair with an old brush now, as I have gotten my 190 out and have been using it for days.


MAC 190 brush with Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Foundation in Porcelain with MAC 134 brush and Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Powder in Translucent

Have you rediscovered any old favorites or learned to love something you thought you didn’t like?

It’s Sunday – time to organize and clean!

So, if I can get to it, I usually wash my brushes on Sunday (unless I haven’t used them much).  This weekend I’ve been cleaning a lot and today I rearranged my new makeup desk setup (I recently moved EVERYTHING across the room because I decided standing up is for the birds). I’m sure I will keep moving it around because I cannot seem to get good lighting even with 2 lamps and a lighted mirror.  Well…I got the cheap one…not the $200 one…ah, that’s a post for another day.

Last night as I kept dropping things while getting ready to go see Fury Road (holy shit, Kristin, you were right, OMGGGGGGG), I got sick of my desk space being taken up by my brush roll, dropping things, etc, so I went back to my cases and vase filler I put together with supplies from Michael’s.  In no time, I will be sick of dust and random cat hairs…there is no winning when it comes to brush storage.  (And yes, I’m running a brand new air purifier in here!) 

That’s an obscene number of brushes.  Some aren’t even shown here.  I take really great care of them, though, and most of my MAC brushes are about 13-14 years old – no lie!!  If you invest in quality brushes and care for them properly, it’s a worthwhile investment.  That’s not to say there aren’t some cheap gems out there – see that $1 ELF concealer brush?  I spot conceal with it nearly every day.  There are some Sonia Kashuk and Eco Tools brushes in there, too, along with the MAC and Sigma.  You might even spot one or two detail brushes from the art store! 

What brushes are your favorite?  Any special tips for how you store them? 

And now, your moment of fail

I recently ordered some stuff from NYX from their Memorial Day sale. ¬†Some sweet warehouse person saw that I ordered a black eyeshadow and threw in a freebie pencil brush – how nice! ¬†As I was snipping off the plastic wrapper, the brush slid down in the package…

Well, it’s the thought that counts. ¬†Sigh.

Have you ever had an un-boxing disaster? ¬†This is not my worst one, by far. ¬†I once stabbed a pair of scissors right through the fabric of a corset. ¬†Luckily, it was a cheap one (giggle)! ¬†Yes, yes, I know…each time I swear I will pay better attention!


Ok, before I get started, let me just say that I am in no way affiliated with Crown Brush; actually, Kristin and I aren’t sponsored by anyone and don’t get PR samples or anything. ¬†Now, onto the excitement: ¬†LOOK what I saw on Instagram earlier:

image from Crown Brush Instagram

Now, let me just say, many things aren’t just 40% off – a lot is 60% off! ¬†I just got 11 individual brushes for $25.00. ¬†Let’s put that in perspective. ¬†My MAC powder brush was $40.00 (ok, ok, but I had my last one for over 10 years). ¬†Now I realize Crown Brush can be hit or miss according to the grapevine, but the synthetic eye brushes I’ve gotten from Ipsy have been great, so here we go! ¬†Let’s give it a shot. ¬†I’ll let you know how they do.

This way to the sale!

Rachel’s Ipsy Glam Bag – May 2015

Well, I keep thinking my Ipsy Glam Bags can’t get any better, until they do. ¬†This time, I will absolutely use everything except the mattifying lotion and that’s only because I have the world’s most sensitive skin and this product is full of plant extracts and things that would make my face freak out. ¬†Everything else is awesome! ¬†Check out what I got!

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Ipsy is a makeup and beauty subscription service.  Every month, Ipsy sends a cute makeup bag full of 4-5 products, at least one of which is always full sized.  Well, this month it appears 2 of my products are full sized, the eyeliner and brush!  This month, I got:

1. ¬†Urban Decay travel sized Ozone (clear) 24/7 Lip Pencil. ¬†This can also be used as a lip primer! ¬†I’m super excited to try this, as I have never used a clear lip liner before and I have never used anything except balms as a primer. ¬†I know, bad makeup maven. ¬†This is great timing, because UD just came out with a jumbo sized Ozone pencil for those of you who love Ozone as a primer for filling in the entire lip. ¬†Great time to try! ¬†On the card with the UD pencil is 2 samples of the new Urban Decay Revolution High-Color Lipgloss in Failbait (LOL) and Bittersweet (you guys, I am lusting after that matching blush so hard right now). ¬†I can usually get several uses out of these gloss samples.

2. ¬†Luxie 205 Tapered Blending Brush – Well, how awesome is this! ¬†I need brushes all the time. ¬†I don’t wash mine often enough and I use saturated colors, so I go through my brush stash fast. ¬†Yay! ¬†I have seen Luxie reviewed on YouTube and most seem to like them.

3.  Briogeo Reparative Leave-In Conditioning Spray Р1 oz.  This is a good sized sample!  I got a conditioning mask from them before in another Ipsy bag that was so good, I swapped on Facebook for a second one.  I hope I love this, because I just re-upped my color on my super long hair and it seems thirsty!

4. ¬†BellaPiere Cosmetics Gel Eyeliner in Ebony – Full size! ¬†From the box: ¬†“Bellapierre creamy, preservative-free eyeliner pencil has been formulated with pure 100% minerals, natural waxes, and anti-oxidants.” ¬†We’ll have to see about this…I like preservatives, guys. ¬†I have had all natural products grow mold and stuff…preservatives are actually your friend (don’t get me started, LOL). ¬†If I love this, I will have to try to use it up fast. ¬†We will have to see if it holds up to my Urban Decay and Sephora waterproof pencils. ¬†It looks very nice.

5. ¬†Amie Naturally Kind Morning Dew Matte-Finish Moisturizer – This is the one product going in my swap box. ¬†It’s not them; it’s me. ¬†I have sensitive skin and this is loaded with plant extracts that would irritate the bejesus out of it. ¬†Also, I have combination skin with dry cheeks, so if I used this, I could probably only use it on my forehead and nose. ¬†LOL. ¬†My skin is a jerk. ¬†I’ll tell you all about it some time. ¬†ūüôā

Now for the extra fun part! ¬†I got…dun dun dun…FREEBIES! ¬†That’s right, when you review things, or share things on social media, or people sign up for Ipsy with your link, you get points. ¬†When you get enough points, you can redeem them for free stuff. ¬†How awesome is that? ¬†Well, this time around, they had some false eyelashes by Lash Attitude for only 100 points each! ¬†I got one of each pair in “Shimmy” and “Can-Can.” ¬†Fun names! ¬†Makes me think of burlesque and showgirls or something. ¬†Can’t wait to try these! ¬†Kristin says she has trouble with lashes, so since I learned how to do them with ease when I worked at MAC (because they made us, hahahahaha), I am considering making a tutorial. ¬†What do you think?

So, here’s the bag I got. ¬†Ipsy did 3 versions. ¬†I like this one, but all my products are important!

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Want your own Ipsy Glam Bag delivered to your door every month for just $10.00 USD? ¬†You can use My Link¬†and I’ll get points to redeem on cool stuff and you will get 5 items to try every month in your very own glam bag — AND when you review things and refer friends, you’ll earn points too. ¬†It’s so much fun! ¬†Kristin and I have been members for a long time and we love comparing what we get, sending each other what we don’t use, et cetera. ¬†Yay!! ¬†I love Ipsy, it’s like a mini holiday gift in my mailbox every single month!