Instagram Samples Challenge

Hello, my dear friends!

Those who follow me on instagram are aware that I’m doing the Samples Challenge where I try every day/every other day samples of products that I have collected so far and share the results in my stories! If you missed the stories, don’t worry: you can always check them in Highlights that I save on my instagram page.

Why I decided to do this?

While I was reorganizing my makeup and skin care I’ve found a pouch where I keep all the samples and single-use masks. The reason I was collecting the samples is because when you travel you want to travel light and makeup bag always takes most of the space and weight. But, at some moment I’ve realized that when you travel you don’t really want to experiment with your skin: it is already stressed and dehydrated because of the flight and climate change. And there are so many interesting products like masks and creams to discover!

Inspired by my current read – Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing I decided to start with my sample collection as a part of the decluttering process. And make it even more fun and interesting for everyone as I’m sharing my honest reviews on each and every product! For those that I like (and those that state to be hydrating and moisturizing products) I also do a hydration measurement with my device from Philips that I’ve talked about in this post.

By running this challenge I also find so many good products that I’d like to purchase once I finish trying my last sample! I mark them with a custom hashtag #sunkissedblush_approved. By the way, you can also follow this specific tag to find my featured products in a single search!

Nevertheless, there are also products that cause irritation or break me out and from time to time I need to take a break for couple of days to restore my skin. And for sure, I’m letting you know why I liked the particular products, if they really work as promised or if you should skip on them.

I’m not sure how long it’s going to last, as compared to all these basket/pan projects I do not limit myself with any specific timeframe. Anyways, I invite you to join me on this amazing journey to learn more about new products!

This post is not sponsored. My disclaimer policy is here.

If any of the products cause irritation discontinue use immediately.

Let’s have a talk! Follow me on instagram @sunkissedblush_blog

5 Beauty Products from Amazon That Will Transform Your Beauty Routine & Save You Some Cash

Hey guys!

Today, I’d like to share with you some of the Cult-Favorite products that you can get at Amazon and probably won’t find in stores, at least not for the same price.

Amazon indeed can beat some of the stores in variety of products and the prices for these products. Even though I prefer shopping at specific physical stores, sometimes I can find a better deal at Amazon and this post is all about these finds!

Neogen Dermalogy Bio-Peel Gauze Peeling Wine

K-beauty bloggers swear by this product. These exfoliating pads provide both physical and chemical peeling to help your achieve smoother and softer skin with glowing complexion. The wine extract also helps to tighter your skin.

Needless to say, that it’s almost $6 less than it’s retail price! ($21.54, Buy Now)

Tony Moly Sheet Masks Pack of 11

You can’t have too many sheet masks! Taking into considerations that they really work (tested on myself with a special hydration level device!) and they are for one-time use only ( with retail price of #3.00 each), getting such a good bundle is a very nice deal! ($24.00, Buy Now)

Soy Nail Polish Remover Lemongrass 4 fl. oz.

If you are looking for a nice nail polish remover without acetone and other toxic ingredients – try the one from Priti NYC. It is my personal favorite nail polish remover. It requires a little more time ( I’d say a moment more) to crack the top coat and get to the nail polish but once you see it work, it dissolves the color and keeps your nails conditioned and hydrated. ($20.00, Buy Now)

[The Face Shop] Essential Damage Care Dual Deep Treatment

Another product I can swear by! I’ve already posted about this particular product last year, but I’m going to comment about this one one more time. Because I can talk about this amazing product forever!

This restorative treatment is packed with all the good ingredients and it really works leaving my hair so silky and smooth. I use it instead of conditioner/ or after conditioner, leaving it for 3-5 minutes and then washing it off. By the way, Amazon is the only place I could find it when I moved to the States. And compared to any other “working” products that I used so far, they are never this affordable. And little goes a long way! ($12.47, Buy Now)

Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water, For All Skin Types, 13.5 fl. oz.

Micellar water is a one step universal cleanser that removes dirt, makeup and oil from your face, eyes and lips.  One of my favorite micellar cleansing water can also be found at Amazon for a discounted price. Even Walmart can’t beat this price. ($6.74, Buy Now)

Finding a good product for a lower price is always a good thing. And sharing goodness is even better! By the way, you can save even more through Ebates cash back system. It’s very easy to sign up and install the pop up window to your browser to get the cash-back alerts from the online stores that you  visit. The cash that you get back is returned to your PayPal account which is indeed easy and convenient to use.

To start using Ebates just click on this green button below.

Ebates Coupons and Cash Back

And finally, I’d like to add that by using the Buy Now links in this post you can easily support my blog! I promise, you won’t pay any extra if you decide to purchase any of the items. And as always, this post is not sponsored as well. I’m doing my best to do my own research and share my own experience with you.

Have you ever tried any of these products before? Let me know in the comments down below!

You can find my disclaimer policy here.

If any of the products cause irritation discontinue use immediately.

Let’s have a talk! Follow me on instagram @sunkissedblush_blog



Tarte Shape Tape Hydrating Foundation: Hit or Miss?

Today’s review is the longest and the most detailed compared to what I’ve done before.

Let me know if you like such detailed posts in the comments down below!

The Story

I had a very hard time with this foundation. The whole story starts from the moment when they just have been launched at I used a quiz to find my “perfect match” and I’ve ordered Hydrating Foundation in Light Neutral and some other things the same day. When the package finally arrived I’ve realized that I picked a wrong shade: I also ordered Shape Tape concealer in the same shade and tried it first – appeared to be 1-2 shades lighter than I am. I didn’t even try the foundation – I already new that I was lighter than I needed and didn’t want to waste the product and returned it.


Then I waited till they will be available at Ulta to get the right shade. When it finally happened and I got to the store, the assistant showed me the stand with the foundations and I asked her to pick the right color to me. She picked the Light-Medium Sand. I asked if there were more neutral shades but she said Hydrating line don’t have them only the Matte Foundations. I wanted the hydrating line so I decided to go with this color.

Screen Shot 2018-02-06 at 2.58.08 PM
Tarte Shape Tape Hydrating Foundation Shades.
Screen Shot 2018-02-07 at 3.07.18 PM
Tarte Shape Tape Matte Foundation Shades.

First Impression

When I came home and applied the product all over my face I saw a round yellow face looking at me in the mirror. It was horrible. I was upset with my purchase, but didn’t take it off as I wanted to test the formula since I’ve already used it.


By the end of the day, it looked horrible as well: patches of foundation were missing on my cheeks around my nose although I was using my regular primer underneath and applied the foundation with the round brush.

I decided to read the reviews on this products to see if other people have the same issues. At that moment (finally!) I realized that there are much more shades for each type of the shape tape foundation. I was even more upset that the assistant in Ulta didn’t tell me that I could get the right shade online if they didn’t have it in store!

How shades of my other foundations compare to each other(from left to right): ABH Stick foundation in Beige; Tarte Shape Tape Hydrating Foundation in Light-Medium Sand, Armani Silk Luminous Foundation #5; Dior NudeSkin BB Cream #002

If you follow me on Twitter, you probably know how upset I was with this service. Nevertheless, I still decided to test-drive the formula one more time. This time with pictures doing my best to disregard the shade.

I’ve looked through the shade names today again and realized that Hydrating and Matte shade names don’t match! This is what caused the confusion to the assistant: there are neutral shades but they are just called differently.

Tarte Cosmetics, but why so?

Final Test-Drive


The foundation comes in a glass bottle. To open it you need to unscrew the lid and it pops with an applicator – the same that comes in their Shape Tape Concealers but in a bigger size. From one side, it is really convenient to apply the foundation straight on your face. From the other side, such applicator can easily breed bacteria inside of the bottle and cause breakouts to your skin.


The Shade Selection

Although there was a dispute about scarce selection for deep completions, I still think they have a really nice range of shades. Moreover, they promised to release 10 more shades for the people who’s complexion shade is missing.


If you plan to buy it online, I would recommend testing the shades in store first. As I was told by Tarte Customer Service, Hydrating Foundation best matched with the Hybrid Gel/Rainforest of the Sea Water Foundation. If you have not used this product before you can try it at Sephora. Or go straight to Ulta, but make sure no one convinces you about lack of shades in any of the formulas.

One more tip: don’t try to match the shade name of the concealer that you have to the new foundation, chances are that this idea might mislead you.

Screen Shot 2018-02-06 at 2.58.08 PM
Tarte Shape Tape Hydrating Foundation Shades.
Screen Shot 2018-02-07 at 11.21.07 AM
Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer Shades.

Formula Expectation

Here is the information from the brand about key ingredients:

  • biopolymer filling spheres: expanding spheres help smooth surface imperfections while promoting water retention & hydration
  • hyaluronic acid: naturally-occurring ingredient in the human body which delivers moisture, firmness & suppleness to skin
  • collagen: helps plump the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles
  • barley extract: helps restore the lipid barrier to smooth over fine lines & wrinkles
  • dermal filler: cross-linked hyaluronic acid that works overtime to help restore skin volume & smoothness
  • vitamin C: antioxidant free radical fighter that helps prevent premature signs of aging & brightens skin
  • Amazonian clay: nature’s most perfect ingredient for better, longer, truer wear

Above is very promising, so I decided to test it on my skin. My skin is normal both in oil and hydration level and I prepared my skin with scrubs, masks and a stronger primer for the sake of this test.

Here is what I expect from this foundation :

Screen Shot 2018-02-06 at 4.17.04 PM
Screenshot from


Formula Reality

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The formula is thicker than I normally use. Despite the thickness, the coverage is light-to-medium. When I tried to build up the coverage, even by using a damp beauty blender to blend out the foundation all over my face I still saw that it is a little patchy. I tried to smooth it out and filled the gaps with the foundation to ensure that all my face is covered.

It looks so much better on the pictures but not in real life: Yes, it add glow to the skin, covers the blemishes but also reveals the texture
I had a hard time blending this foundation

After that, I set my face with translucent powder – I do not use it that often, but today I’m doing everything to prove that my first impression is wrong. After I completed my regular day makeup, I applied the All-nighter Setting Spray all over my makeup.

I managed to neutralize the yellow shade by using bronzer as a contouring powder on my cheeks and eyes and also the blush. I also used highlighters as regular.

When I look at myself in the mirror, I can’t say that I really like it as I don’t see the promised smoother and fresh & healthy-looking complexion. Neither, did I noticed it when I used it for the first time without the setting powder and setting spray. And don’t be fooled by the pictures! Camera eats up the texture of the skin that is revealed by this foundation.

In the next few hours I’ve noticed that on the parts of my cheeks where i didn’t use any bronzer or blush, the skin looked oily and pores look enlarged. Yes, foundation added luminosity to the skin, but huge pores is definitely not something I was aiming for. It also starts to come off slightly.


The oilier it became, the more I would feel it on my skin. And honestly, I don’t remember the last time my skin was this oily.

If you can see the darker line around my nostril then you see how the foundation disappeared around my nose. The more I was keeping it on, the less foundation was on my nose. I used a blotting paper on my cheek at it removed the “healthy” shine. As I understand from this, the ingredients in foundation increased the oil production in my skin that from one side adds luminosity but it also melts the foundation from the other side.

The skin became patchy in that area and no longer lightweight – you can also see it on the photo above. By the way, the photo was taken before I used the blotting papers. I removed the whole makeup by the end of the 6th hour of wearing it.

My Verdict

Although my first and second impressions were not so good, I still wanted to give this foundation a chance. It somewhat performed better when I used tons of other products to keep it in place longer, but it definitely not what I was looking for.

Yes, it adds luminosity but it makes my skin produce more oil. I felt oily even on the next day and this doesn’t add points to this foundation.

The formula is thick and quite hard to blend, even with a smooth primer underneath and a damp sponge. It also reveals the texture.

The coverage is too light and uneven for the thickness that we get and the shine that appears on my cheeks eats up the makeup and makes my pores look even larger.

It definitely won’t stay for the 12h: only maybe if you keep reapplying the setting spray.

But really, why so much hassle for $40?

Yes, I agree that the formula and ingredients sounds very good, but feels like it didn’t work for me that well. For this price I expected something better.

My experiment showed me that I need to search more for my perfect foundation and it’s definitely not Shape Tape.

Have you tried this foundation? Let me know if you liked it or not!


This post is not sponsored. My disclaimer policy is here.

If any of the products cause irritation discontinue use immediately.

Let’s have a talk! Follow me on instagram @sunkissedblush_blog



Clinique Sparkle Skin Body Exfoliating Cream

Hello, my beauties!

If you follow me on Instagram ( and if you don’t you are welcome to do so!) recently I’ve share stories about my Nordstrom & Sephora Beauty Hauls. Clinique Sparkle Skin body exfoliating cream was among the products that I shared on that day, and today, I’d like to talk about it in more details.


I was looking for a good body scrub, but this one is so much better than a regular scrub. Why is it different?

First of all, it’s allergy tested. Although it is 100% Fragrance free, it has a natural fresh minty aroma. This was a little unexpected for me, as I don’t like minty exfoliators especially during the winter season. Nevertheless, the minty sensations are very light and the skin doesn’t feel stung after – even the cut on my hand wasn’t itchy at all.

Secondly, I’d like to highlight the way it feels on the skin. I tried a small amount on my hand and I was amazed how gentle this exfoliator is. Yes, first of all it is designed as a CREAM, and at the same time it works as a perfect exfoliator. My hands have become so smooth and the skin is so gentle after I washed it off. Although the grains are fine and feel like a face exfoliator, but they really do their job removing the rough surface and letting the skin glow from within.

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Last but not least, I like that it is oil-free and leaves no residue on your skin as it washes off the skin easily and won’t make the bath tub/floor slippery and dirty.

It is designed to be used on wet body and it is good for elbows, knees and heels while its cream formula allows it to be used 3-4 times per week.


Although, its minty smell is a little unexpected for me, I’m quite satisfied with this purchase and can recommend it especially during a warmer season.

I got this particular one from Nordstrom for $26.50.

Have you ever tried this exfoliating cream? Let me know in the comments down below!

This post is not sponsored. My disclaimer policy is here.

If any of the products cause irritation discontinue use immediately.

Let’s have a talk! Follow me on instagram @sunkissedblush_blog


Beauty Devices and Tools to Try in 2018

We are living in a wonderful era when latest technologies in beauty and wellness can be used at home by a regular consumer. If 5 years ago, you only had a choice to go for a in-office treatments, now you can do most of the things at home: from laser hair removal to peelings, micro needling, skin toning and etc.

Although, I feel a little bit uncomfortable using some of the at-home devices myself (knowing myself for burning my skin with a simple wax) there are some devices and tool that I’d like to try this year.

So, today I’ll be sharing with you my wishlist on beauty devices and tools that I’m not scared to try on my own.

1. AMIKA Polished Perfection Straightening Brush


$120 (Buy Now)

Thermal straightening brushes have become very popular last year, and this particular one has been featured in Allure magazine. This device combines the straightener and the brush to create smooth hair with just one stroke.

Amika brush incorporates special technology called Double Negative Ion Technology that maximize the negative ions to create shiny, frizz-free result. Ceramic bristles make each hair heat up fast and evenly to reduce the damage to the hair from the heat.

I’ve just got this one yesterday as a pre-birthday gift. I haven’t tried it yet, but can’t wait to try it on my hair. Would like to see the unboxing video? Let me know in the comments down below!

2. Le Mini Macaron Gel Manicure Kit


$35.00 (Buy Now)

After moving to US and seeing prices on nail services, I started to think of getting my own gel manicure kit. Shellac has become a thing recently, and honestly, this is the only way for me to keep my nails on point. This small device is equipped with LED light and USB and looks very travel friendly to me. And it is so cute! It comes in a kit with gel nail polish, a cuticle stick, mini nail file and 10 remover pads for easy removal which makes is quite affordable. It takes only 30 sec to dry each nail and the device is reversible so that you can use it on your toes too!

3. Foreo UFO Face Mask Device


UFO $279; UFO mini $179 (preorder at Kickstarter)

Social Media got on fire about this device and people (including me) can’t wait till it’s released. Foreo, the brand known for its cute silicon cleaning brushes is launching a device that is believed to cut the time of facial masks from 20 minutes to only 90 seconds! Foreo’s UFO will come in two sizes. The full size device will feature both cooling and heating technologies, while the mini size will only have the heating option.

Screen Shot 2018-01-18 at 11.36.30 PM

Both of the versions will feature the T-sonic Pulsation that will massage your face while improving the absorption of the mask ingredients and RGB LED Light Therapy known for stimulating collagen and refining complexion.


You can preorder it from the Kickstarter for half price. There are also good value kits available for order.

4. Jade Roller


$24.45 (Buy Now)

Not all good tools use latest breakthrough technologies and for some you don’t have to pay a fortune. As an example, think of this jade roller, another recently hyped tool, that has been integral part of beauty regime in China for centuries.

Why it is so good? This small unsophisticated massaging tool will boost blood circulation, reduce under-eye swelling, wrinkles, dark circles and aids in absorption of products into your skin. It is also known to eliminate toxins and improving skin appearance by tightening and minimizing pores.


5. NUFACE® NuBODY Skin Toning Device


$399 (Buy Now)

It’s hard to admit, but cellulites is something most of the women have from the age of 18. Although there are no permanent cure from it, the skin can be improved by some massages and in-office treatments. Now, these procedures are available at home.

NuFace is also known for its Face Toning Device, and now they’ve released a similar microcurrent toning device for body that will help to visibly tighten and firm your skin. This body toning device has shown really good results during the clinic study. And if not for the price… Anyways, I’m still going to keep it in my wishlist.

6. Philips Skincare Assessment Kit


$29.99 (Buy Now)

I wasn’t planning to include this device in my post. First of all, I didn’t know about its existence ( also secretly wishing for such device for years).

Philips Skincare Assessment device is linked to an app on your phone that will collect the data and analyze your skin hydration level. This analysis will take your skin care routine to the next level. I’ve ordered this device right away today – it’s only $29.99 for the kit. I’m planning to make a separate review on this, so stay tuned!

For sure, there are much many devices, but these 6 seem the most easy, safe and user-friendly for me.

What device you would like to try from this list? Let me know in the comments down below!

This post is not sponsored. My disclaimer policy is here.

If any of the products cause irritation discontinue use immediately.

Let’s have a talk! Follow me on instagram @sunkissedblush_blog

Healthy Skin during the Winter Season

Winter has come to Texas in a form of  the Winter Storm warning with frozen rain and temperatures below freezing. On this Frozen day I’d like to share with you my remedies for healthy glowing skin. Be prepared for a long post!

Hydration, Hydration, Hydration

The key ingredient for healthy and glowing skin is hydration. The heaters that we start to use as the temperature drops are drying the air that we breath causing dehydration to our body. While drinking more liquids (water preferably) is a no brainer, I’d recommend to use humidifiers when you turn the heater on.

Recently, I’ve purchased Essential Oil Diffuser/Humidifier from Amazon which perfectly fits the interior and can be used with essential oils to fill the room with natural scents.



Since I’ve moved to Houston, my skin has become surprisingly dry, so my vanity cabinet is full of various moisturizers that I use depending on how dry the skin is.

With heaters and overall dryer air during the winter, I would recommend using thicker creams to maintain hydration.

All products are in mini size except for the Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream and La Mer Eye Concentrate

My favorite moisturizing cream is Creme de la Mer from La Mer. It is the thickest face cream I have and I usually apply it as a night cream. I don’t use it every night, only when my face feels extremely dry. The moisture level remains till the next day and the skin feels very soft on the following day.


I also like the High-Potency Night-A-Mins cream from Origins. It has a silky formula and amazing citrusy smell. It also leaves the skin very conditioned and soft on a less drier nights. For oily skin, Origins has the same cream in oil-free version.


If you like masks, consider the Moisturizing Mask from Caudalie. I usually use it once a week as a part of my night skin care routine and leave it overnight replacing the night cream.  I’d recommend using such cream masks over the sheet masks in winter because it is so easy to get cold as the wet sheet mask chills on your face for 20-30 minutes.


When I’m applying make up, I use Josie Maran  100% Pure Organ Oil to nourish my skin, followed by the Whipped Argan Oil Face Butter and finishing with Surreal Skin Organ Finishing Balm that also works as a primer.

By the way, this Pure Argan Oil is super versatile, so you can also use it also for hair and nails.


If you have oily skin, you would like the Ultra Facial Cream from Kiehl’s. I think it works for every skin type and is also good for sensitive skin – tested on myself. I use it on less drier days under the makeup.


When applying products to your face, do not forget about your décolleté area.

As for the eyes, my one and only is The Eye Concentrate from La Mer. I use it twice a day to erase my dark circles and hydrate the most delicate skin under my eyes.



Flaky dry lips is a nightmare to me. Using balms sometimes is not enough, so it’s good to exfoliate your lips before applying a balm or lip makeup.


I like the Pout Prep Lip Exfoliant lip scrub from Tarte, it comes in a very convenient small  size. It is very gently and moisturizing as it is enriched with maracuja and shea butter. You can also use it to remove the liquid lipstick gently from your lips.

I’ve already dedicated a separate post about my favorite lip balm from Lanolips, you can read about it and its active ingredient here in more details.


Your body also needs hydrations to combat the dry air.


I’m using  Deep Comfort Body Butter from Clinique which is really a good one as it absorbs quickly into the skin. If you want something even more nourishing, go for L’Occitane Ultra Rich Body Cream enriched with Shea Butter.


Hands are another important part of the body that need to be nourished as they age really fast. My all-time favorite is Shea Butter Hand Cream from L’Occitane. It sinks into the skin quickly, bringing long-lasting comfort while not being too oily.

Do not forget to nourish your cuticles: I’m using a Cuticle Conditioner from Onsen. Its formula is also very gentle and it absorbs fast making your manicure last longer.

I’d also recommend to use the Extra-Gentle Soap from L’Occitane. This soap bar is the best one I’ve ever tried in my life, and without it I’m having extremely dry patches of skin on my hands.


For your foot I’d recommend using another product from L’Occitane – Dry Skin Foot Cream. It is also from the same Shea Butter line that as you see I’m obsessed with. Put some cream under your socks before you go to sleep to wake up with soft baby heels.




Thanks for reading till the end, hope you enjoyed this post and my picks will help you live through the winter.


What is your skin remedy from the cold weather? Let me know in the comments down below.

This post is not sponsored. My disclaimer policy is here.

If any of the products cause irritation discontinue use immediately.

Let’s have a talk! Follow me on instagram @sunkissedblush_blog

Best Volumizing Shampoo

If I could swear by one hair product (although, it would be really hard to pick just one), this volumizing Full Shampoo from Living proof is the Holy Grail for thin flat hair.


Honestly, I didn’t plan to buy it, but Sephora was out of my favorite one from Moroccanoil and since I still needed a shampoo, the sales assistant recommended this one. And you know what, I fell in love with it from the first wash.

I have oily hair and since I color my hair, the ends tend to be dry. I’m usually facing dilemma searching for the right shampoo: it has to deal with oiliness, add volume and be color safe.

I tried tons of different brands before, from the top premium to the most affordable ones brought to me from different parts of the world, but this shampoo can easily beat them all.

Here are my 5 reasons why I love it so much:

  1. It really works and gives me crazy volume and body – air dry or blow dry  – works perfectly both ways
  2. The volume stays on the second day too, and there is no #badhairday on the next day
  3. It is sulfate-free and silicone-free
  4. It is color safe
  5. It doesn’t make my colored hair too dry at the ends

I haven’t tried the Conditioner that compliments this shampoo, but I think it should be good as well.

This is how my hair look on lazy blow dry hair day. I didn’t use any additional products for the volume, just the shampoo.


By the way, this is already my second bottle of the shampoo and really, I just can’t say anything bad about it, although this product received only 4* at

I only need to comment on the price – 8 oz bottle costs $25, so it makes more sense to buy 24 oz for $59. I usually use a small amount of shampoo and the 8 oz bottle lasts me for several months. If you are like me, 24 oz will last you forever. Well, at least you are covered for a  year.

Have you found your ideal shampoo? Let me know in the comments down below!

Let’s talk beauty on instagram! Join the conversation @sunkissedblush_blog

This post is not sponsored. My disclaimer policy is here.

If any of the products cause irritation discontinue use immediately.