This is a compensated review by BlogHer and L'Bel.
Despite having a full-on makeup addiction AND a secondary job as a beauty writer (to feed my addiction/enable me to justify my purchases for “research purposes”), my actual makeup routine is pretty minimal. I know! This IS just like an Alanis Morissette song!
You wouldn’t know it from my steamer trunk-sized makeup bag(s), but the truth is, I’ve got the whole thing—hair and makeup—down to under five minutes. (Video proof here!) I’m a creature of habit, and so while I’ll do little things like swap out this lip gloss for that, or switch from cream blush to powder, by and large, the routine itself remains pretty much the same.
The only time I stray from it is when I have a truly fancy party to attend. My litmus test for determining the Fanciness Level of a given event involves a complicated series of algorithms, but basically, boils down to “does my husband have to wear a tuxedo to this thang?” If so, I do one of three things to add a little something to shake up my routine:
As I mentioned, I’m a bit of a gloss fan. I have….well, an embarrassing number of them, and a special event is the perfect excuse for me to act like a grown up and put on some lipstick. The mere act of applying it just feels more elegant.
I’ve recently gotten over my lifelong fear of false eyelashes and learned how to actually apply them. (The secret: individual lash segments! So much easier and more natural-looking than the full eyelash strips.) Done right, they make your eyes look incredible and party-ready.
3. GET MORE PRETTY, PRETTY MAKEUP
Let’s be honest, I usually wind up taking options 1, 2, and 3. And with the holiday party season rapidly approaching (hold me!) I was delighted when BlogHer asked if I’d be willing to do a review of some beauty products from L’Bel. I said yes, because, uh, see above, and also, because I'd never heard of L’Bel, and I was intrigued.
And now I shall bore you with my product review methodology: I take my reviews seriously. I used my unfamiliarity with the L’Bel brand as a factor in this review. I did not research L’Bel in advance, so as to ensure a fair and unbiased perspective, and when the package arrived (it had been customized via questionnaire for my age, skin, and preferences), I held myself back from even checking the prices online. I honestly had no idea how L’Bel was classified from a price point perspective, and again, I wanted to judge the products on their own merits. My total lack of knowledge of the brand enabled me to critique itin a completely unbiased way, without thoughts like “well, it’s good, for a drugstore brand” or “for a department store product, I expected more”.
I only recently received the products, so I cannot speak to the efficacy of some (such as the Regression Yeux eye cream), which take a while to take effect. However, some standouts for me were the (surprise!) Delicious Lip Gloss Plump (which had the perfect touch of sweetness, but not so much that I compulsively licked it all off and needed to reapply it every 12 seconds. It’s a tough balance to strike), and the Regression Jour face lotion with SPF 15. It’s made to protect against the first signs of aging (which I TOTALLY HAVE), absorbs quickly, and has only the faintest of scents, which I personally appreciate.
Overall, I was impressed with the products I received. It was only after a few days of testing them that I actually looked up prices (and learned about the company). L’Bel is a French cosmetic company which focuses on developing products focused on both age range and skin type. The quality of the products and the upmarket packaging led me to believe the prices would be in the mid-to-high-priced department store brand range, but in fact, they were more along the lines of, say, Clinique. (The lip gloss, for instance is $11.)
And--YOU GUYS. I’m hosting a sweepstakes for $500 worth of L’Bel products custom selected for the winner.
Entering is easy: Since the holidays are coming, just leave me a comment below and tell me: What you add to your makeup routine for special occasions/moments. It can be as simple as “red lipstick” or as involved as “a Rapunzel-length weave. WITH GLITTER SPARKLES!” You can also answer the question in a post on your own blog, and leave a link to it in the comments below. The contest will begin on December 9, 2009 and run until January 8, 2010. Pretty please leave a valid email address in the comments.
Also, check out the BlogHer.com review/giveaway round-up page here for other reviews, and eight other chances to win, and feel free to follow L'Bel on Twitter for beauty tips and special offers.
Good luck, and happy holidays!
* No duplicate comments.
* You may receive an additional entry by linking on twitter and then leaving a link in the comments.
* You may receive an additional entry by blogging about this contest and then leaving a link in the comments.
* This giveaway is open to US Residents, aged 18 and older.
* Winners will be selected via random draw, and will notified by e-mail.
* You have 48 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.
* Please see the official rules here: