The Deets: Birthday Makeup

If you know me in real life or have followed me on Instagram for a while, you may know that one of my goals for this year (in addition to going cruelty-free with all of my makeup) was to master the art of red lipstick. This has been an ongoing makeup struggle for me; I continuously chicken out and could not bring myself to go out in public with red lipstick. Do not ask me to explain this to you because I do not have any logical response. I am comfortable with fluorescent pink, practically glowing orange, and just about every other color on the planet and yet red was something I did not feel brave enough for. Well, I finally did it! This past Saturday night, heading out for a birthday dinner with The Boyfriend and our OBF (Oregon Best Friends), I finally wore red lipstick in public! I thought I’d share the look with you guys including a full product list and text-tutorial. Let me know if you enjoy this format, I will try to do it more often.

On the subject of cruelty-free, I should note that this is still a work in progress. I have found some really amazing cruelty-free replacement for products I loved, some of them even much more affordable than what I was originally using. However, there are some products for which I have not yet found a cruelty-free replacement. I would also like to add that while I am not planning to buy any more natural hair brushes, makeup brushes are quite an investment and I will not be getting rid of natural hair brushes that I already owned. The decision was not made lightly.

Products listed in order of my personal application.

SKIN – perhaps the most important part of your makeup, even more important than the makeup itself, is prepping your skin. To me that includes moisturizer, primer, and any other skin treatments I deem necessary (if I’m going for a daytime look that usually includes a vitamin C serum and sunscreen).

Drunk Elephant B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Gel – This is my go-to daytime/pre-makeup moisturizer, two little pumps is more than enough and it absorbs quickly so it doesn’t disturb makeup application.

EYES – So I can focus on making my eyeshadow look the way I want it to instead of worrying about making a mess, I always do my eye makeup before moving on to foundation, concealer, etc.

MAC Cosmetics Pro Longwear Paint Pot in Painterly – this is my ride or die eyeshadow primer, I have been using it for close to three years at this point, and it takes me pretty close to a full year to get through one jar! I like to apply this with my finger all over the mobile lid and up to my brow bone and then lightly set it with a translucent powder. This is one of the only items in my entire makeup collection that I still have not found a cruelty-free replacement for, I will happily accept any recommendations!

Marc Jacobs Eye-Conic eyeshadow palette in Scandalust – I applied “At The Office” into the crease with my MAC 224, blending it out about halfway up to my brow bone and then using whatever was left on the brush to add some more definition around the lid. Using a Smith 230, I worked “That’s Why” a little tighter into the crease focusing on the outer portion of the eye and blending slightly into the outer 1/3 of the mobile lid. Finally, I used a MAC 221 (possibly my favorite brush of all time) to lightly add “Little Miss” to the outer v, gradually building and blending to develop a smooth gradient with a more dramatic outer corner.

Marc Jacobs Highliner Gel Eye Crayon in Blacquer – I applied this super creamy gel-like pencil liner in the outer 2/3 of my waterline, leaving the innermost area of my eye bare. Black eyeliner can add a beautiful and dramatic touch to any look, but it can also make your eyes appear smaller which is something I wanted to avoid (especially since I already wear glasses).


Too Faced Hangover Replenishing primer – Another ride or die product for me, I’ve been using this for years as an extra layer of coconut magic for my dehydrated skin. Since my skin will overproduce oil if it gets too dry, this does actually help extend the wear time of my foundation by keeping my skin super happy and hydrated.

Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue tinted gel cream in 01 Opal – I just wrote a full review about this last week so I won’t get in to too much detail, but I dotted a nickel-sized amount all over my face with my fingers and then blend with a damp Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge.

Kat Von D Lock It Concealer Creme in L9 – This is a new one for me so I’m still testing it out, but so far I am really liking it. I used the applicator to put three dots under each eye and an additional dot on the outer edges of my nose and blended out with the Real Techniques Miracle Mini Sponge.

Kat Von D Lock It setting powder – I let my concealer do its thing for a minute or two, then pick up any excess with a q-tip before using the included puff to set under my eyes, around my nose, forehead, and chin.

Becca Cosmetics Shimmering Skin Perfector in Lilac Geode – Just picked this up on Friday (my actual birthday) and it was my first time using it. I like to do my highlight first because, even though I like an intense glow, it looks more natural when it’s layered underneath blush and/or bronzer, rather than on top. I applied it to the tops of my cheekbones with the Anastasia Beverly Hills #23 brush, definitely my favorite for highlight.

Marc Jacobs Air Blush in Flesh & Fantasy – I tend to apply blush a little further back on my cheeks than what is “standard” – I find blush on the apples makes me cheeks and thus my face look much more round, in an unflattering way (for my face shape). The larger RealTechniques DuoFibre brush is perfect for applying just the right amount and blends it right into the base of that Lilac Geode glow.

Hourglass Cosmetics Ambient Lighting Bronzer in Diffused Bronze Light – One of my better purchases this summer, I love to use the tip of the RealTechniques blush brush to apply bronzer on the outer perimeter of my face, focusing around the forehead, temple, and jawline.


Portland Bee Balm – I love supporting local businesses, and not only does this SE Portland crew make my favorite under-lipstick moisturizer, but they also support healthy hives and treat environmental impact as a top priority in running their business. I have chronically dry lips and like to add a little balm before swiping on a matte liquid lip.

Kat Von D Everlasting Lip Liner in Outlaw – This was a very impulsive purchase, which isn’t something I do often, but it was an excellent decision! This twist up pencil is so smooth and the color payoff is outstanding. I don’t have a very defined lip line so, even though lip liners aren’t necessary for liquid lipstick, it helps me keep my lines crisp!

Lime Crime Velvetine liquid lipstick in New Americana – It seems I have found my perfect red! I have praised the Velvetines formula on multiple occasions, so I won’t do it again, but especially with the lipliner assist, this applied beautifully straight out of the tube – no brush necessary.


Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade in Medium Brown – A very very new product for me, I am kinda loving the infamous Dipbrow (and the corresponding #12 brush) for crisp, but full and natural looking brows.

Essence clear brow gel – A touch of added insurance, I like to swipe a little onto the bushier parts of my brows to keep everything in place throughout the day.


Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir mascara – I don’t really have a good reason for why I do my mascara at the very end, but that’s what works for me so here it is. I have been using this mascara exclusively since I first tried it back at the very beginning of June and I am still loving it just as much as I did then.

Urban Decay All-Nighter Setting Spray – I have accepted the hypocrisy of me using this product as someone who chooses not to support L’oreal or any brands they own. That said, the options for cruelty-free setting sprays are very limited, even more so to find one that works right for your skin, and I settled for a product that doesn’t test on animals now even though they are owned by a brand who hurt many people in it’s past.


Too Cool For School Dinoplatz Blotting Paper – I ended up not using them this evening, but it is something I keep in my handbag and felt they deserved an honorable mention.


Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. I was not asked to write this, nor were any items provided to me free of charge or in exchange for a review. I receive a one-time referral bonus when you sign up to earn cash back through Ebates using my link. Sephora, Ulta, Marc Jacobs Beauty, Kat Von D, MAC, and BareMinerals are available for cash-back purchases through Ebates. Excluding MAC Cosmetics, all items mentioned in this post are cruelty-free.

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