Collaboration + Review: 2nd Love Cosmetics

Hello my loves! First of all, I would like to apologize for hyping this post on my social media platforms and not following through due to technical difficulties. I have a strong love-hate relationship with the digital world, and unfortunately, this blog depends on it. For that reason, I made sure this post was worth waiting for by putting my whole heart into it. I hope this post helps you in deciding whether or not you would like to give 2nd Love Cosmetics a try!

Before I give y’all the goods, the bads, and hopefully the lovelies, I wanted to thank Joshua from 2nd Love Cosmetics for reaching out to me and asking me whether or not I wanted to review their products. I am still in awe of this opportunity given that I do not consider myself as a make-up artist of any sort. Keep in mind, I’m the type of girl who cringes at the thought of wearing eyeliner (which explains the poor eyeliner job in the following pictures). After using 2nd Love Cosmetics’ products religiously for the last few days, I can confidently say that I will make a future purchase as I adore their products. I love finding and trying new up-and-coming brands because I like to think that they share the same drive and passion as my little ‘ol blog.

Even though all of the products that I received are complimentary for a review, my opinions are completely honest.

Let’s get up-close and personal. I usually don’t do a full face, but to really test out the products, I wanted to see how harmonious they are with my current holy grails. For background purposes, I will run down my routine for y’all: I started with Urban Decay’s All Nighter Setting Spray to prevent my make-up from melting off my face. Then, I placed a rather generous amount of Cover FX’s Blemish Concealer to lessen the red pigmentation from my acne. Next, I covered my face with Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Foundation in the shade of 4.0. Using the lovely Real Technique’s Expert Face Brush, I blended and buffed out the face products. Depending on how my face feels that day (oily vs. dry), I would usually lock in the products with Rimmel London’s Stay Matte Press Powder.

After my face is complete, I would go in and attack my eyebrows. Side note: I am still working on my eyebrows tutorial! I am beyond late with the tutorial, and that’s because I’m trying to do a video recording of it. Given my lack of experience and equipments, it is much harder than I expected, but I really want to post a tutorial of quality, so please don’t give up on me just yet! Anywho, this little blurb is kind of a tutorial, so give this a try if you are feeling ambitious! For eyebrows, my go-to product is the NYX’s Micro Brow Pencil; I use it to draw in my eyebrow shape in preparation of the eyebrow powder and wax/cream.

I have been using ELF’s Eyebrow Kit in Light and Medium religiously, so I was really excited to try a new product for a change. As pictured above, I was given the “eyebrow compact-this compact contains 2 powders, 1 brow cream and a dual ended applicator to create perfect brow color. Available in 3 colors: light, medium and dark.” I was given the compact in medium, and the colors are right on. As you can see, I was too excited to take a picture of the compact before use. I couldn’t help but compare this compact with the ELF’s Eyebrow Kit. My favorite thing about this kit has to be the pigmentation of the powders and cream; a little bit of the product definitely goes a long way. I strongly suggest using a little bit of this product as it may result in fall-out if a lot of product is used. Surprisingly, I really like the powders of this compact compared to ELF’s Eyebrow Kit; I don’t even use the powder in the Eyebrow Kit. The only con of this compact is the size of the dual ended applicator. Personally, I think the brush is way too big, especially because I like the ends of my eyebrows to be sharp and pointy. For application, I patted on the powder on top of the eyebrow shape that I drew in with the Micro Brow Pencil. Then,  I sealed it in with the cream and cleaned it up with foundation using an angle brush.

After eyebrows, I had a little too much fun with eyeshadow. I don’t wear eyeshadow on a daily basis because 95% of the time, I have no idea what I’m doing, and remaining 5% is used to blend the harsh lines between colors to my heart’s content. I used both Urban Decay’s Ammo Eyeshadow and The Balm’s ShadyLady vol. 2 Eyeshadow palettes. Then, I used Wet N Wild’s white eyeliner pencil in the inner corners of my eyes as part of my eye make-up routine. Next, I applied Almay’s liquid eyeliner, which I am not in love with. I am definitely in the market for a better eyeliner, so if you have any suggestions, then please comment below. Your girl really needs her wings to fly.

Last, but not least, I ended my eye make-up routine with my favorite step of mascara. I like this step because I know what I’m doing here. I used Shiseido’s Eyelash Curler, and then I went in with “rose mascara- the long brush works to separate lashes, as well as add volume and length to your lashes. Apply one layer for a romantic look, and additional layers for dramatic eyes.” I added two layers for a dramatic look, and I thought it looked pretty good. Although it did lengthened my lashes, it didn’t mimic falsies. Also, I wished the wand was curved like most wands in order to reach the lashes near the corners of my eyes.

Okay, now that I am finally done with my eyes, I can move on to the rest of my face! This explains why I don’t do a full face often; it takes a lot of time and effort. Kudos to all of the make-up artists out there; make-up is definitely a form of art. Anywho, next, I moved onto “contouring,” and I put that term in quotation marks because this my form of contouring. Given that my face is acne-prone, I don’t like putting emphasis to the sides of my face where the acne lies, but I still want to give my face some sort of dimension. For that reason, I fell in love with this “Glow N’ Bronzer in Warmth. 2nd Love Baked Powders are a collection of soft, sheer powders that provide intense color and flawless coverage. Our powders are made with a special formula containing a high content of pearl powder, our collection of powders has intense color payoff and a high shine finish. Baked powders can be used dry or wet with a brush or sponge applicator and are long wearing compared to traditional pressed powder products.” I used this product dry with a brush, and unlike their claim of intense color payoff, I thought it was just the right amount of color payoff: not too much and not too little. I don’t wear bronzer often because the colors are usually a little too bold and dramatic for my cuppa tea, but this product gives a nice, natural shine. I especially like the lightest shade of the product as I used it as a highlighter. I see myself wearing this every day, so I will definitely make another purchase of this bronzer soon.

Similarly to bronzer, I didn’t expect myself to like the “Quick Stick Cream Blush in Bashful” so much. It is a “roll up stick blush that has a creamy texture. Unlike your usual powder blush, cream blushes can be applied and blended into the skin with a more luminous finish. Available in 6 rosy shades.” I don’t use powder blushes to begin with because again, I don’t like to bring attention to my acne that is prevalent on my cheeks. Surprisingly, this cream blush looks super natural on my skin, so I am able to achieve a really tasteful rosy cheek look with this product. Also, it is extremely easy to blend out, and for that reason, I’ve been wearing it every day since I got it. I’m definitely buying this product again, and I would love to try out the other shades.

We are at the home stretch, guys! Can you imagine how long it takes me to actually put on all of these products?! The last step to my make-up routine is all about my lips, which happens to be my all-time favorite step. I applied the “Signature Lipstick in Dusty Rose” followed by “Pout Plumping Lip Gloss in Coralina.” The Signature Lipstick ” is a moisturizing lipstick enriched with Vitamin E and Jojoba oils. These lipsticks provide a creamy, long lasting, velvety smooth finish in all shades.” Pout Plumping Lip Gloss “is a sheer lip gloss that smoothes out the lips and gives high moisture. It has a minty feel that helps to plump the lips slightly but is not overpowering. TIP: Wear it alone for a high shine and slight tint of color or wear it on top of your favorite lipstick for an extra shine Pout Plumping Lip Gloss comes in 6 luscious shades.” I applied the lip gloss directly on top of the lipstick, and I love the combination of these two shades together. I am usually attracted to bright, bold red shades, but I really like this natural pink shade as it would go with any outfit. Both of the products are extremely moisturizing upon initial application. I believe this is due to the incorporation of Jojoba oils, which I absolutely love. (TIP: mix in a few drops of Jojoba oil in your moisturizer for extra moisturizing power; you can thank me later. :P) The lipstick, however, dries up like a matte lipstick after a long period. Depending on your preferences, that can either be a pro or con, but in my case, it’s a definite pro because I like matte lipstick.

Through this experience and opportunity, I learned not to judge a book by its cover. I definitely did not expect to like this company’s products as much as I do. Of course, there were elements that I didn’t like so much, but overall, I was quite impressed. I hope y’all give 2nd Love Cosmetics a chance and let me know what you think!

For funsies, I paired up my full-face with Tobi’s sparkly gold A-line dress with a criss-cross back that I got for $15 (I’ll do a review of Tobi’s products very soon!) and Steve Madden nude heels that I got from thredUP for $21.

My photoshoots are never complete without this pose…so until next time, peace out, loves!

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