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Low Buy who? I went on a shopping spree

Once a year, usually within the time I am making the rounds to pick up school supplies, I go a little nuts. And by a little nuts I mean I absolutely take my foot off the brakes and pick up whatever suits my fancy so here’s a peek into what’s up for this years spree. Click on the image to direct shop any item listed.

Colourpop: Anyone who has read this blog or seen my Instagram knows how much I love this brand. With reasonable prices and a new launch every 32 seconds or so, it satisfies every itch I could want to scratch and with their new SOL and Fourth Ray Beauty lines, it’s getting harder and harder to navigate away from their website. Here’s what I picked up:

A couple of their So Juicy glosses. I discovered these incredible gems and haven’t look back since. Their Intersection gloss paired with NYX suede lip liner in True Brown is my perfect glossy nude.

Gloss in Intersection (now on sale)

The Uh Huh Honey, California Love and She palettes. With a combo of yellows, bronzes and pinks I am set for all my summer and fall looks.

Fem Rosa She Palette
Uh Huh Honey Palette
California Love (the ultimate travel palette so many looks are possible)

My new surprise the Fourth Ray skin cleansing milk, it looks straight up my alley and I think I good intro into the line.

Great on its’ own or as part of a multi step cleansing routine

Next in line…new shoes! Aldo has an epic sale on, so I snapped up a new pair of nude pumps for work, some great camel colored platforms for my summer adventures, a very patriotic red, white and blue bag and some chic sunnies to top it all off.

ALDO Cilmaclya – Women’s Sandals Wedges – Brown, Size 9

So cute for jeans and rompers and love the color

Think I’m done? Stopped by SheIn for a huge range of rompers that caught my eye, as well as a few t shirts that had adorable catch phrases. But wait, there’s more!

I’m in the plus category and this fits me beautifully

I popped onto Etsy and picked up a few tribal inspired hoops and studs to complete the looks I’m building. I need to start accessorizing more effectively so this is a good start.

Loved how unusual these were and they look amazing

Deep breaths now, I bought most of this stuff when it was on sale, stayed well within my budget and made sure I was able to pay off my credit card in full immediately. There will be no financial regrets here, I stay in my lane and know what I can afford but it’s nice to feel like a big spender when this stuff all arrives at once.

Keep an eye on my IG @clarityreviews or Twitter @reviewsclarity for updated pics on how this stuff works out but a review on my spree will be coming soon!

Clarity R

Some of these links are affiliated and I will make a small commission on the sale, if you have mercy on me and my awful shopping habits, you’ll use them!

The Travel Must Haves

I can safely say I am a travel expert. I have travelled all of the world including most of Asia and Europe and do short haul flights (5 hours or less) at least 8 times a year for business. As a result I can say with confidence that I am the one to turn to for how to get as much as you can out of your packing routine. For the sake of expediency, this particular article is about packing must haves, if you want to know what’s in my Travel Makeup kits click here (…)

BauBax

For those who don’t know what BauBax is you having been missing out. Think of it as a smart wear for travel. With hidden pockets, great access points and a spot for everything including your travel documents, headphones, devices and more you may be hard pressed to see if you really need a carry on. They have several styles for men and women including full outfits but the jackets are my fave. Well worth the investment at $199 for the women’s bomber. It will be the only jacket you ever wear again for travel.

I am not 100% sure how I travelled before packing cubes. They keep clean and dirty items nicely separated and act as compression bags for your clothing so you can fit a great deal more. If you are packing cold weather clothing these are indispensable because large items take up very little space. I love these for shopping trips because everything can fit without paying for extra bags.

Laneige lip balm has been my go to since its inception for preventing dry, chapped lips on a flight. The moisture is incredible but the formula is not sticky. It’s glossy finish with just a hint of tint also makes me feel a little more polished after landing.

Bose headphones have been my ultimate for years. They are crazy expensive compared to some of the items on the market but for good reason. Without the sound on, the noise canceling feature has blocked out many a chat happy neighbor or background noise. In addition, the oval shaped ear piece gives me comfort without pressure on my ears. I don’t tug or pull on cords and wires and don’t have to figure out how to keep them in.

Don’t know how many of you get a chance to go on trips that include shopping but even if you don’t a good pair of scissors has saved me more than once. Get rid of the tag, bulky packaging, weird ties before you attempt to pack. Get rid of threads hanging from your clothes, old baggage tags and more. A sharp pair has saved me trying to chew through some things or mangled my nail clipper in an attempt to remove a tag.

A luggage scale. All women will know the stress of getting your luggage into as few pieces as possible without crossing the overweight limit. Even if you are lucky enough to be flying first class, one pound over can equal some hefty fees or repacking luggage on the floor. This little luggage scale keeps my weight where it should be (exactly 1 lb below the max) and helps me rearrange before I step foot in an airport.

A pair of cute but disposable sunglasses. We all have our super luxe statement pair that we love but let’s be practical about vacations, things get lost, scratched or stolen and no one needs that happening to their Fentys. Quay sunglasses have been proven to be both reasonably priced and suitably stylish that I can carry a few pairs. Just as cute are Aldo accessories which has done some amazing pairs that are very trendy. Pick the right pairs and they many even survive the trip back home.


An amazon prime subscription. Sound like a strange thing? Not if you read at the pace I do and take the kid free opportunity to actually finish the page of a book without interruption. Books can get expensive and the Prime subscription allow me to borrow up to 10 books at a time without cost. I make this program work for me and go through about 300 books a year at last check. That far outweighs the Prime membership cost and can of course has other benefits like Prime Video and 2nd day shipping in case you forget to pack anything above.

Try Prime Discounted Monthly Offering

This is my little snapshot into packing must haves for me. It’s not an exhaustive list but somethings that I can’t live without on my frequent jaunts. I would love to hear from you in the comments as to what is on your must have’s list.

Clarity R

Some of these links may earn me a small commission if you purchase through them which I will use to start a charity for those who still travel with bags that don’t have 4 wheels (poor souls).

Call It Whatever – Palette of the Season!

I Tried It…ABH Luminous Foundation

It’s sweltering in Trinidad, 90 plus degrees with a touch of menopause and you have a cocktail from humidity hell. I start like this for you to understand that I am beyond hot, I feel like my body has rebelled and the environment is participating but in spite of this I did a foundation test.

I have had the Anastasia Beverly Hills Foundation since it’s launch day as I was lucky to find it at Ulta in my shade and with my dry skin and climate, I figured a dewy foundation should be right up my alley. The claims sounded like my dream combo, a luminous foundation with no requirement to set with powder and medium coverage? Sign me up.

Zero makeup in all my glory

My shade (315N) is quite possibly the best foundation match I have ever had in my life. It’s truly neutral undertone does not pull grey at all and compliments my skin. I tried both application with a brush and a sponge but lean heavily in favor of the sponge because of the finish being more even. I ended using the Juno sponge (I love the pink one) and found a power couple.

Primers were tough, I felt like a gripping primer under this foundation did it no favors. It’s a thin formula and for it to really shine it needed a lighter base. My best combo thus far is the Farsali Skin Tune Blur with a little Elf Poreless Putty Primer in the T Zone. With that done I achieved flawless medium coverage with no streaking that lasted ALL day in the unceasing tropical heat.

Mid application 1 thin layer with no add ons

I almost found that as the day wore on, the foundation became more luminous but in a pretty way, almost like I had touched up with a highlighter and was flattering without being shiny. I experienced no breakup over time, even around the mouth and nose and loved how I still felt like it looked like skin rather than a mask.

All in all, I haven’t experimented too much with ABH yet, I own the legendary Amrezy highlighter but this is my first dip into the other products and I am impressed. This may become my go to day to day foundation as I feel it’s pretty enough to wear all the time. Who knows? One day when I’m famous enough maybe I can be next to have my own collab, one can dream.

Picture taken with studio lighting and and IPhone (like my towel backdrop?)

Clarity R

All products have been purchased with my own money, this review is not sponsored and Norvina and I are not personal friends (Though that really needs to happen)

I Tried It…HoneyLove Shapewear

HoneyLove Sculptwear - Next Generation Shapewear

When most people think of shape-wear the image of these horrific medieval torture devices often flash through our minds. Contraptions made of thick, unforgiving material that require power tools to get in (and out) of and most of all, as the most unflattering thing we can put onto our bodies. I have to say I fell into that category until recently. I wrote a comparison and review of my experiences with several brands (click here for that article: https://clarityreviewed.com/2019/02/21/i-tried-it-shapewear/ ) and HoneyLove (a brand covered) reached out to me to try even more of their selection.

I jumped at the chance because in my first review, I had no relationship with the brand and they were the clear winner so what else did they have to offer and was it any good? If you follow me, you will know I put items through the ringer. I wear and test for up to 30 days including how items wash because that’s what real life is and I was taken aback. The items sent to me were the Power Brief and the Queen Brief and they were sexy!

For once, I did not feel like I was wearing some awful and shameful garment. The sheer appearance around the bum area gave the illusion of a high cut panty and was more like lingerie than shapewear on the bottom. The waistband held true to their claim, it did not budge, roll down or even fold once. I have worn them both now to work under dresses, under rompers for events and even under a jeans and t-shirt combo for a more flattering silhouette.

HoneyLove Sculptwear - Next Generation Shapewear

The kicker though is what HoneyLove does for me personally. It’s not about trying to look skinny, it’s not about fooling anyone into thinking I don’t have rolls somewhere. It’s about giving me a sense of confidence and putting a little strut in my step when I leave the house. It’s about making me feel like my clothes look good because I am not constantly tugging or adjusting the little spots that we all have that make us self conscious.

The overall experience was empowering and comfortable. Strange bedfellows I know but that’s my feedback. I was gifted these products but as always my readers are more to me than any brand so this is 100% my own opinion and not sponsored. I look forward to the brand bringing out even more options in the future and have to say that I’m all in with HoneyLove .

Clarity R

Some links are affiliated and I will receive a small commission if you purchase through them which I will use to buy stocks in magazines and have them fire all the photo retouchers.

HoneyLove Sculptwear - Next Generation Shapewear

Orange You Glad? NEW Monochromatic Palette!

The Fenty Face

For those who don’t know I happen to be from a small island in the Caribbean called Trinidad, which also happens to be a tiny hop away from Barbados so this has some particular impact for me. When I first started getting into makeup, I was already a big fan of Rihanna and her music but I never envisioned the impact she would have as a mega mogul in beauty, fashion and more.

I was lucky enough to purchase some Fenty products upon initial launch and even more so when I was sent a variety of products by the Fenty team. It has taken me a while to write this because PR or no, I stand firmly by my 30 day test protocol to really know how a product works for me in different environments so here we go. I know I have to say this, so none of these pics are FaceTuned mostly because I have no clue how to use it.

100% Fenty Face with my fave Fenty Bronzer Brush which found my long lost cheekbones

Foundation: This was a struggle at first for me because having dry skin, I found that I got a little flaking around my nose and forehead but then I figured it out, Fenty plays well with others and the Cover FX Gripping Primer has been an amazing combo. the foundation stayed true and that means at least 8 hours of wear in tropical conditions and ac work environment.

Concealer: These are incredible to blend with a thin and flexible applicator that makes it easy to get under the eyes, I actually like these most as my “no makeup” days touch up for a flawless finish.

Matchstix: As I am sure we know my now, beauty enthusiast does not equal beauty expert and I think I was using these incorrectly. Once I applied the reverse foundation technique (applying bronzer, blush and contour under the foundation) this was a dream but to be honest I much prefer the powder bronzers for shaping my face.

Powder: I think this is where I was most hesitant and most pleasantly surprised. My Sahara worthy face avoids powder like the plague and the only one I have ever used with any success is the lightest dusting of the hourglass veil powder, but this changed my mind. Both shades Butter and Lavender has improved my technique and finish remarkably. They both really do blur pores and allow for a flawless finish.

Bronzer: Here is where Fenty shines. The undertones of these bronzers are spectacular and have really allowed me to use them as contour as well. I have a very round face and using the Fenty bronzer brush was an incredible upgrade in my technique and application. I have used this as a travel staple, putting a light dusting over my eyes with a touch of highlighter for pop and I’m done!

Does this sound a little too good to be true? Maybe but I test everything relentlessly and if it’s not that great I say so because I value my reader more than any brand relationship. That being said, RiRi hit this out of the park. As a Caribbean woman of mixed ethnicity, I appreciate and applaud her efforts to create the line to be as comprehensive and inclusive as possible without sacrificing quality.

100% Fenty Face for my attempt at a night time look, this covered all my hyperpigmentation and redness and lasted 10 hours

Cross your fingers for me that they send me more treats to test but even without it, I stand by my Fenty face.

Clarity R

All photos are my own, taken with my incredibly fancy phone on my dining room table. Lighting in my personal photos provided by Mother Nature.

Does fashion end at 40?

I want you to think for a moment of a 40 year old, not yourself of course, but someone else that is around that age. Do you think of them as old or young? That’s the question I think I ask myself every time I do an IG post or look at Twitter. This fashion and beauty world has a nasty habit of presenting beauty as no older than 25 and it makes many of us question if we are being considered or spoken to by many of these brands.

Carmen Dell Orefice Image via Pinterest

Rihanna, being who she is, was one of the first to have a model over 40 for her Fenty clothing line launch. She is stunning, embodies confidence and elegance and defies categorization. She can also probably afford Rihanna’s clothes, how many 25 year olds can?

So here is my fundamental question to brands in all categories. Who do you think is buying your $60 primers and $40 lipsticks? Certainly not the 20 something saddled with student loans and living with 3 roommates. It’s us. Financially secure women (and men) with disposable income and a desire to pamper ourselves. It is this demographic so sorely lacking in marketing materials, campaign ads and more that can afford to buy the entire lipstick collection for $150 and not ask for a discount. Why then are we the least represented in fashion, beauty and more as having no desire to be on trend or experiment with our look.

Pia Gronning 64 Image via JCrew

The cardinal rule that fashion dies at 40 ended years ago so we challenge both the fashion and beauty brands to wake up and smell the high credit scores of people who could potentially make or break your business. Recognize and appreciate that this category must be represented as a factor for diversity, the same way shade range is considered for foundation launches (again Rihanna leads the pack, seeing a trend here). No offense meant to the 20’s crowd but move over, mommy’s got some shopping to do.

Clarity R

Image via :Refinery 29


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Amazon Prime Day. – Part 2

As a continuation of our Prime day series, part 2 covers a lot more! Some of our favorite essentials as well as an add on or two for fun. It’s a long one so settle in with a snack but all the links are clickable so I tried to save you some trouble! Haven’t read part one yet? Take a look at our Amazon list for a flawless base https://clarityreviewed.com/2019/07/11/amazon-prime-day-means-makeup/

L’Oreal Paris Brow Stylist Shape & Fill Pencil: There are a million brow products on the market, both high and low end but this meets every need without breaking the bank. With a spoolie on one side and an angled point at the other, the shape allows for both fine strokes and fill with rich color that’s not too waxy and easy to spread for a more natural look

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Gel Clear: Just the opposite from the above, this one I went with the only option in my opinion. This brow gel keeps all the micro hairs firmly in place without a white cast and a visible gel texture. For on place, no budge brows, this is my first choice.

Physician’s Formula Bronzing Veil: Any one who knows me will realize that the Fenty Bronzers are my die hard choice but this bronzer from Physician’s Formula is something special. With a rich warmth for that just off the island finish and a subtle glow, it’s am amazing summer bronzer with a bit of dew

Wet N Wild Megaglow Highlighting Powder: This highlighter gives you a liquid shine that beats highlighters 10 times the price. Available in a wide variety of colors, it gives the option for a subtle sheen or a glow to make the stars envious. Your choice.

Essence Lash Princess Mascara: An undiscovered treasure for many, this Vegan Mascara provides a full and rich volume without clumping or transfer. Again, it compares to come high end mascaras even some as much as $35 (a big savings)

Lorac Pro Contour Palette Plus Brush: Maybe a little pricey compared to other options but you do get a great brush and the key is a range of tones that don’t have that awful gray or green cast. These rich shades are skin like and a great blendable formula for even an amateur.

NYX Professional Makeup Matte Liquid Eyeliner: This is my go to eyeliner for a sharp wing, I prefer a matte finish so this is perfect and is just as good as many luxury brands without the price tag. To be honest, my holy grail is the Beauty Bakerie Lollipop Liner but this one is no slouch.

EM Cosmetics Infinite Lip Cloud: This is a brand you may it be familiar with but should be, this lip cloud is the dreamy name suits this mega long lasting liquid lip. With a lighter than air texture and in 11 shades it’s one of my favorite secrets

Karity Nudes and Rudes Eyeshadow Palette: How on earth do you choose just one eyeshadow palette? I decided to stick with a good range of neutrals that allow for a sultry, smoked out look or a soft day time option and Karity was a clear winner. This indie brand has amazing pigmentation and a great formula that allows building up of pigments and a variety of looks.

Honest Beauty Setting Spray: As a leader in the clean beauty movement, Honest has been at the forefront of this change for healthier and environmentally friendly choices. This setting spray has a lasting effect on my makeup and contains hyaluronic acid that gives me an added boost.

Told you this one would be epic! So this is my Amazon guide to a full face (of course there are so many other I could include like lip balm, eye primers, lip pencils but I’m tired and it’s Sunday so….

If you buy through my links I become an instant millionaire and stop writing immediately

Clarity R

Super Shocks are 40% off at Colourpop!

Super Shocking

Amazon Prime Day means makeup!

So when I was thinking about my next post my little pop up reminded me that Amazon Prime Day is coming up on the 15th. Now we never know what’s actually going to be featured in the sale or how fast it may change but I thought it would be fun to post some of my favorite makeup products available through Amazon Prime.

As I started writing I realized how epic a post this could be so I have decided to break it up and post a few sections. This one concentrated on the base, with primer, foundation, powder, concealer and even a little glow to make things special. You will be surprised what you can find on Amazon and with Prime, that means free, quick shipping on whatever catches your eye. In no particular order, here we go.

The Pores No More Primer by Dr. Brandt has been a go to for me for some time now. I was pleasantly surprised to realise that such a high end brand was being stocked on Amazon and loved the poreless finish this primer gave me. Spoiler, I actually like this better than the Tatcha Silk Canvas Primer because it seeps into my skin and gives me a touch of moisture.

L’Oreal Paris Makeup True Match Lumi Glotion Natural Glow Enhancer Highlighting Lotion was a real find for me. I love that dewy look and was eyeing the Huda Nymph Body Glow for some time. This was an amazing substitute available in 4 shades that I added to both body lotions and under foundation for that golden glow. This mixes so well with other foundations in my arsenal that I have bought several shades.

The Elf foundation packs a punch, with its’ unassuming price you don’t expect much but it is a beautiful satin matte finish that builds to a fantastic full coverage without looking cakey. I think this gives a number of my more expensive foundations a serious challenge and mixed with a little of the Lumi from above, becomes a bullet proof, no budge wear that lasts at least 9 hours in tropical heat.

A combination of Caribbean weather, coupled with a heavy travel schedule makes my skin drier than the Sahara. This Hydra Powder from L’Oreal is one of the few that lets me set down my base for a budge proof finish without creasing and making my aging skin seem drier than it is. There is certainly a blurring effect and it creates a smooth, almost satin finish to the skin.

If you haven’t been under a rock all year you already know about Age Rewind. With a thinner consistency and a sponge tip applicator, this concealer covers up some of the worst transgressions (and your dark circles) with a flawless finish. There are alot of places to pick this up but because of it’s overwhelming popularity, shades are often slim. Amazon is one of the few places to pick up a wide range in stock.

So there you have it, my Amazon Prime must have list for the base. A second post will be coming soon on the rest of it but even I need sleep. This is not a sponsored post, the Amazon links are affiliates but I saved you all the trouble of looking for everything individually so give me my 3 cents!

Clarity R

Trash or treasure, my empties this year.

I always love empties videos on YouTube because they often receive so many products that what the beauty gurus actually finish can be of interest. I have to say I’ve built up quite the little collection myself so I started using the Kathleen Lights approach and putting a little container in my makeup area to make sure I don’t just dump them and it actually surprised me what got cleared out. So let’s get cracking and see what I would buy again. I will put links below everything so you can also check out details and current prices on each product.

Glow Recipe Avocado Melt Sleeping Mask https://amzn.to/2JagkMp

This was an incredible find, it felt my skin feeling luscious and plump and is a great travel mask for a quick shot of hydration, there is a light scent to it but it’s not off putting so I can live with it.

Too Faced Peach Perfect Mattifying Setting Powder Peaches and Cream Collection https://amzn.to/2LzPXkE

I love the finish of this powder for light baking and setting under the eye area, it has a brightening effect. Be forewarned if you are sensitive to scent this is NOT for you. However, it is a lovely soft finish with that perfect fine consistency

Maybelline New York Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circle Treatment Concealer https://amzn.to/2xx1tVS

The key to this concealer is the applicator, the sponge tip allows for flawless full coverage hiding any proof or my prior late night. I think the thinner formula also allows for better coverage without looking cakey and the price can’t be beat

Catrice Prime and Find Multi Talent Fixing Spray https://amzn.to/2JctZCH

I was very surprised but this one but I found myself reaching for this setting spray more than any other. It really was amazing at keeping my makeup intact even in 95 degree weather without changing the finish.

E.L.F. Cosmetics Hydrating Coconut Mist https://amzn.to/2XoNXmt

This is my 3rd empty of this because it has a lovely refreshing scent and makes my skin dewy on my “no makeup” days. This is always in my purse and car too, it’s just that good.

Hope you enjoyed my empty list and keep in mind the reason these all got good reviews is because they are the only things I use until empty (would you empty a product that sucked?) nothing is sponsored, all products purchased with my own $ and I do make a small commission if you shop through my affiliate links (to support my ELF mist habit)

Clarity R


My Skincare Fixation

When you are younger you think you are bullet proof, especially my generation in the late 90’s early 2000’s who were on the cusp of the social media age but were no where as savvy as the the current 20 something year old who have a 12 step skin care routine and can contour by middle school. We grew up in the grunge era, where a face mask was not exactly common and the idea of wearing sunscreen on a day to day basis hadn’t yet taken hold.

Now, looking back, I wonder how much I could have saved my skin if I had taken care of it even a little in its more resilient days. Too late now but brings us to my current topic, my skincare fixation. I am obsessed with masks, peels, treatments, moisturizers, serums, I want them all. I have no budget for skin care either, this is where I will spend $300 for a single cream if I think it will have a positive impact on my skin.

My face mask collection is staggering, I could probably do a mask a day for a month and not run out at this rate. I do have a few favorites which I will list below (not sponsored) given my parched and abused skin needs all the help it can get.

So the idea is what works for me? 40, with dry skin, redness and dark spots is a complicated mix but here are some holy grails at all price points and in no particular order.

Murad Resurgence Replenishing Multi Acid Peel. – this gentle peel allows for awesome exfoliating but does not strip my skin of essential oils and makes keeping a smooth texture easier

Clinique Moisture Surge Overnight Mask – nothing like super deep hydration for those who sleep in AC. This gel like consistency makes me feel plump and dewy by morning

Bliss Ex Glow Sion Radiance Boosting Eye Cream – again just the right dose of moisture and gentle on my aging skin, helps solve dark circles by replenishing moisture where I need it most

Revolution Skin Care London 10% Matrixyl – this anti wrinkle and fine line serum has been a game changer and has smoothed out so many tiny crinkles and prevented new ones from appearing

Summer Friday’s Jet Lag Mask – My Sunday Skincare joy, this deep and soothing mask makes me feel like I am at a spa and makes be super glowy which I love

Laneige Essential Power Toner – I never knew I even needed toner until I tried this one which helps me tighten and smooth the skin in prep for other products

If you are interested in any of these check Ulta, Sephora or click to the homepage and check out my Link in Bio page which has some special offers when you buy however these reviews are not sponsored, not PR, only my hard earned cash and what works for me.

Clarity R

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