What I Tried and Loved in November

Every month I’ll be sharing a roundup of all the things I tried, which ones I loved or didn’t, and any other products I’ve been loving for the month.

November was a fairly heavy shopping month — hello, Sephora VIB sale AND all the Black Friday sales. But I took a bit of a break from makeup, so most of what I bought I’ll be trying in December!

New products I tried and loved

Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Contour Wand

I have been wanting to try the Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Contour Wand for a while, so I finally picked it up in Light/Medium during the Sephora VIB sale. This product is really easy to work with and doesn’t disturb your makeup underneath. It has quickly become a staple in my routine!

Pat McGrath Sublime Perfection Blurring Under-Eye Powder

I kept hearing great reviews of the Pat McGrath under-eye powder and concealer, so I told myself when the brand had another of its VIP sales, I’d get the set to try. There was a 30% off sale in late October, so I picked up the blurring under-eye kit that includes the powder, concealer, and concealer brush.

More on the concealer and concealer brush later, but the under-eye powder is a hit. I picked up the shade Light, which is a white translucent powder. If you’ve tried the Becca Under Eye Brightening Setting Powder, this is very similar, except that it’s pressed instead of loose — which I prefer! It has a gorgeous blurring and brightening effect that helps me look more awake — another new staple in my routine.

Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Mascara

I’m not usually one to buy luxury mascaras, but when I noticed the Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Mascara on sale for half off, with an additional 20% off during the Sephora VIB sale, I couldn’t resist. Katie Jane Hughes raves about this mascara, and I can see why. It gives instant volume without clumping. I may be a convert to luxury after all.

Pigments from Sigil Inspired by Tammy Tanuka

Sigil Inspired by Tammy Tanuka is one of the brands I really wanted to try this year, and after spending way too much time browsing their extensive library, I finally settled on an order of 18 pigments. And I loved them! Notable favorites include The Mad Professor, for its interesting mix of shimmery pigment and mica flakes, Heiress to the Throne, for its intense golden shimmer, and Mother of Oil, for its unique wet look. You can ses all of my looks and read more thoughts in my Sigil Inspired by Tammy Tanuka review.

Devinah Cosmetics Aurorae Flares Collection

Devinah Cosmetics is one of those brands that when they release a collection, I’m usually at my computer before launch with my credit card ready. The Aurorae Flares collection was no exception. Though I purchased in the initial release, I was still working my way through my Sigil Inspired order, so I didn’t get to try these until this month. And, naturally, I loved them! View my looks and read my review in my Devinah Aurorae Flares post.

Other new products I tried

Smashbox 24 Hour Photo Finish Eyeshadow Primer

I have used the Urban Decay Primer Potion for years, but lately I’ve wanted to see what else is out there that I may like better. This month I tried the Smashbox 24 Hour Photo Finish Eyeshadow Primer. I think it’s a great eye primer, but there are a few things I don’t like that just come down to personal preference.

First, I’d prefer to be able to apply with a brush. This primer is too thick for that — I have to squeeze a little out on my hand, then warm it up and apply with a finger. Second, I’d like a prefer a primer with enough pigment to cover discoloration and help shadows appear true to color. Otherwise, this is a great choice for a long-lasting primer if you have oily lids, and it applies incredibly smooth if you have textured lids.

Kevyn Aucoin The Eyelash Curler

As much as I love the effect, I hate curling my lashes. More often than not, it makes my eyes water, messing up my lower lash line and generally irritating my eyes for the rest of the day. I thought perhaps I just had the wrong shape for my eyes, and while the Kevyn Aucoin The Eyelash Curler is significantly more comfortable and gives better results, I’m not a convert yet. Maybe I just need more practice.


Though I’ve tried makeup sponges, I had never actually tried the original beautyblender sponge, so I decided to give it a try during the last Sephora VIB sale for 20% off. It’s fine, but I’m not blown away. I prefer the Juno & Co. Microfiber Velvet Sponge. I feel like it gives a smoother application and doesn’t suck up as much product. Plus, it’s only $6, compared to $20 for the beautyblender.

Pat McGrath Sublime Perfection Concealer

As I mentioned earlier, I picked up the Pat McGrath Sublime Perfection Concealer as part of an under-eye blurring set with the under-eye powder and brush, during one of her VIP 30% off sales. It’s a good concealer, but not a favorite yet. I usually prefer a thinner consistency — this concealer is thicker and more full coverage. I really have to work it in with both a brush and sponge to keep it from looking too cakey, and even then, sometimes it’s too much in the inner portion of my under-eye area. I’m still using it for the time being, as I purchased when I was nearly out of concealer, so perhaps I’ll grow to love it.

Other products I loved

Pat McGrath Sublime Perfection Foundation

I may not love the concealer, but the Pat McGrath Sublime Perfection Foundation is and has been a big favorite of mine since it launched. It’s a little too dewy for me to use on my oily skin in warmer months, but now that we’re having cooler weather, I’m reaching for it more and more. It has the most beautiful, effortless, skin-like finish.

My only complaint is the packaging — while it is beautiful and luxurious, it’s not very practical. The pump doesn’t work well, and it can’t be removed, so there’s no way to tell how much you have left in the bottle, or get it all out. I’d recommend waiting for a VIP sale on the Pat McGrath website to purchase this, as it’s very pricey. The brand seems to run a sale for 20-30% off at least once per season, and you can sign up for emails for early access.

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