Thursday, December 3, 2015

ELF: Best & Worst Products

As a broke college student who loves makeup, I have been really into finding good drug store makeup products and dupes for high end products.  As many of you are probably already familiar with, ELF (Eyes, Lips, & Face) is a very popular brand of drugstore makeup that is known for having products ranging in price from $1-3, & sometimes $5.  I have owned quite a few products from ELF since I started wearing makeup, and some of them are terrible and some I use almost every day.  Today I wanted to review some ELF products that I have used, and tell you what I would recommend from ELF and what products I think you should buy from a higher end brand.  These are mostly just the best & worst from ELF.  I left a lot of products off of here that I have used and been "eh" about over the years.
Disclaimer:  All opinions & photos are my own.  I have not been paid by ELF or given any free products to review.

     1. Clear Brow & Lash Mascara
  • I don't use the clear mascara all that often, but I use the brow gel side almost every day.  It holds my brows and the brow powder that I use in place all day, and it doesn't make my brow hairs clump together.  Win!

     2. Smudge Pot
  • I have an ELF smudge pot in the color "Ain't That Sweet?" and I use it all the time!  It's a cream eyeshadow, and it's perfect for those days when you want to look more put together without the effort.  I love this color because it isn't too out there, but it brights up my eyes really well, and it stays in place all day.  I put a photo of the smudge pot and a swatch above this section to show how pigmented and beautiful this product is!  I love it!

     3. Glitter Primer
  • I don't own ELF's glitter primer anymore, because I don't use glitter much anymore, but this was a staple for me when I did high school cheer.  I got into the glitter pretty heavy for games, and when I used this primer it didn't fall into my eyes.

     4. Endless Eye Pro Mini Eyeshadow Palette (Natural)
  • This is another product that I don't own anymore, but that doesn't mean I wouldn't recommend it.  I had this palette for years, and I even used it for my prom makeup (which lasted all night).  The only reason that I got rid of this palette was because it was old, and I did not feel the need to repurchase it because I have the Naked 1 palette from Urban Decay for my neutrals.  If you don't want to spend over $50 on the Naked palette, this is a great neutrals palette.  (It is normally $10, but is currently on sale for $7 on the ELF website)  It definitely isn't as high of quality as the Urban Decay product, but I was very impressed with the quality for the price.  As long as I used an eyeshadow primer and my white NYX eye crayon under them, there was very little fall out and they were decently pigmented.

     1. Individual & Natural Lash Kits
  • The lashes themselves are not the worst, but the glue is.  Fake lashes are definitely something that I would recommend spending an extra $4 on for better quality.  You don't need high end lashes, but $5 vs. $1 can make a huge difference.  I found these lashes really difficult to place, as they were very stiff, and the glue simply does not hold them on for very long.  I wore the natural lashes to prom, and when I went to the bathroom to touch up my makeup I found that one of my lashes had completely fallen off without me even realizing it.  How does that even happen?!?

     3.  Little Black Beauty Book (Warm)
  • This product isn't terrible, but I also would not recommend it.  It's only $8, but I would recommend saving your money and purchasing the palette I talked about in the "best" section.  It has a lot of neutral colors like the other palette, but I got a lot of fall out with them, and they were not very pigmented.  The packaging also started to fall apart about a week after I got it.  Overall, I had very high hopes for this palette after loving my other neutral palette, and I was really disappointed.

        Lip Exfoliator
  • I've had my lip exfoliator for almost a year now and I love it.  It works really well and smells like coconut & brown sugar.  Yum!

        Matte Lip Crayon
  • I purchased this one during my hunt for the best drugstore red lipstick, and it was probably my least favorite.  I have many matte lip colors that I love, but this formula is extremely drying.  My lips looked like a bright red desert, and every crease and crack in my lips was made very apparent.  Yuck!

        Makeup Removing Wipes
  • These are much cheaper and work just as well as any other brand that I have tried.

     1. Zit Zapper
  • I know a lot of people really like the zit zapper, but all it did for me is dry out my skin and create a flakey, dry scab-like thing in place of the pimple.  I quickly ditched this product and headed to the dermatologist to get real acne cream.

     2. Tinted Moisturizer
  • I had really high hopes for this product, because I wanted something lighter than foundation that I could wear every day and have some sun protection.  I only used it once, then immediately threw it out.  It was very orange, to the point where I looked like I had a bad enough spray tan that I could audition for Jersey Shore.  It also was very streaky and couldn't be blended well.  Of all of the ELF products that I have tried, I think this one is the worst of the worst.

     3. Under Eye Concealer & Highlighter
  • The concealer was fairly difficult to blend in, and couldn't be worn without foundation (I have since purchased an Urban Decay Naked Concealer that I can wear by itself when I'm short on time and it blends into my skin flawlessly).  The highlighter was sheer and streaky, and I did not like the shimmer in it.  I have heard really good things about the HD lifting concealer, so if I had it to do again, I would purchase that concealer and not the concealer/highlighter duo.

     4. Essential Brushes (White)
  • I have heard really good things about the $3 black studio brushes by ELF, but the $1 white essential brushes are terrible.  I have never had an eyeshadow brush shed on me before using the blending brush from this collection, and the brush fell off of the handle the 2nd time I used it.  The bronzing brush also shed all over my face and was very course. 

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