TikTok Beauty Buys I’m Eyeing + Recent, Rapid-Fire “Honest Beauty Reviews.”

By: Jen Shoop

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Every few months, I log onto TikTok and fall down a beauty blogger rabbit hole. I can’t explain why I enjoy this niche so much except to say that I have always loved playing with makeup and some of these women are true artists. On my most recent tumble, I emerged with a full shopping cart of new viral-ish beauty products that I’m desperate to try…

+Chantecaille Sheer Glow Bronze Skin Tint. (Selling out quickly all over, FYI!) People are saying this is like Drunk Elephant’s wildly popular D Bronzi drops or Tarte’s Sculpt Tape but with a bit more coverage (less like skincare, more like makeup). I ordered this and have been playing around with it — I’m wearing it in the photos above and below. Most of the bloggers I watched were using these kinds of products for countouring — they’d dot the product around the perimeter of their faces and then under cheekbones — and I am an amateur in this technique. I have been brushing on along my hairline/nose/cheeks, blending in, and then topping with powder bronzer (I am still hooked on Guerlain’s Terracotta Powder in shade 3) and love the effect. It truly looks like a natural sunkiss! I’m obsessed! (Dress in photos is Doen; earrings are Dorsey — exact style sold out but very similar from same brand here.)

+Kosas Cloud Set Powder. I ordered this to try in one of the mini sizes (LOVE when beauty brands offer mini sizes so you can test drive before making a bigger investment). “Unreal pressed powder for real-life dream skin. A super soft, sheer setting + smoothing powder baked with skincare actives that sweeps away shine (not glow). Feels like nothing, looks like everything.” I saw a lot of people use this to set foundation.

+Makeup By Mario Eye Shadow Palette. Next up on my shopping list. So many people have been raving about these palettes! I like this matte one — I’d wear a lot of these colors for everyday — but this “ethereal eyes” palette has been garnering a ton of love. The colors are spectacular.

+Kingmas Foundation Brush. $8 and gets lots of great reviews. Ordered! Hard to imagine anything can beat my beloved Merit brush (I realized one thing I like is its shortness/squatness — I feel like it gives you so much control over dappling and blending products). I use the Merit one for foundation, concealer, cream blush, cream bronzer, highlighter…the best.

+Charlotte Tilbury Makeup Setting Spray. I have been using setting spray the past few months, after my two girlfriends looked at me in shock when I told them I didn’t use this kind of product. (“It’s the only way to make makeup last!”) I’ve been…underwhelmed? Maybe I’m not using enough? Maybe the brand I bought just doesn’t work? It just feels like another step. The TikTok world seems to think that C.T.’s formula is the formula to use. Intrigued…anyone had good results with this?

+Huda Beauty “Easy Bake” Loose Setting and Baking Powder. Another technique that is probably far beyond my abilities: “baking.” Per Sephora, “After applying concealer, apply a generous layer of powder under the eye, on the T-zone, laugh lines, outer corners of the mouth, and chin. Let the powder sit for 3-5 minutes before dusting off excess.” Apparently these “bakes in” the concealer for long-lasting coverage.

+Benefit Gimme Brow. A few Magpies have recommended this over the years. I’ve been loving this Kosas Airbrow but want to try Benefit’s formula next. I do have to say that a BIG change in my daily makeup routine this year has been paying attention to filling in / gelling my brows. I think this makes such a huge difference in framing and balancing my face!

+Word has it these beauty sponges are just as good as the official “Beauty Blender” brand but a fraction of the price.

+Chanel Highlight Stick. I do not need another highlighter…do I?! This looks fairly similar to my Merit highlighter but people have been raving about it.

+Hourglass AirBrush Concealer. I need a new lightweight concealer. I use my Kevyn Aucoin SSE for undereyes and serious blemishes but could use something a little more blendable and heavy duty elsewhere (e.g., redness on sides of nose, discolorations, etc). This one is looking promising.

A few beauty products I’m currently testing…

+Westman Atelier Mascara. I like this a lot, but do not think it’s worth $45. I find it very similar to my longtime favorite “dramatic” mascara, Armani, which is $12 less. Both of these are inky, full-court press type mascaras. For everyday wear / a more natural look, Ilia’s remains my favorite.

+First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads. Have been really enjoying these as a last step in cleansing my skin. I feel like it really gets every last bit of grime / product off your skin thanks to the textured pad, while applying great ingredients that promote turnover.

+Rephr makeup brushes! The brand sent me an assortment to test. The fibers are ultra-soft. I am finding them great for powders, but not ideal for creams/gels. Will report back after further use!

+Goop All in One Nourishing Face Cream. Great at hydrating but does not absorb as quickly / well as other formulas I’ve tested. I’ve usually been using this at night because I’m not in as much of a rush to, for example, quickly apply makeup afterward. I like the way my skin feels in the morning. Still, not 100% in love with the consistency. It’s been a tough pill to swallow after using a gifted bottle of Augustinus Bader for the past few weeks. I really did not want to love the A.B. and when I first started using it, had a chip on my shoulder — “This lotion better not only make my skin look great but, like, take out the garbage and do the dishes too” — but it truly is an incredible product. I do not think I can bring myself to buy a new tube but might splurge when I find it on sale.

A few beauty products I’m obsessed with at the moment…

+This Merit lipstick. For most of my make-up-wearing life, I’ve avoided lip products unless going out or really getting done up. I find chapsticks just dry my lips out, gloss irritates me (hair gets stuck / lips stick together!), and with lipstick, you run the risk of a color-on-tooth incident, or having it wear out in weird ways, leaving lips filled in half-way. This year, I’ve become a lip product girlie. I love UBeauty’s lip plasma for a quick swipe of color that also fills/plumps lip, and Merit has the most satin-smooth, hydrating consistency! The shade “Millennial” is 100% perfect.

+Westman Atelier Foundation Stick. Whenever I need extra coverage (more than tinted moisturizer / the Merit Complexion stick), this is my best friend. It applies and blends so beautifully. I will never leave her! Like your skin, but perfected.

+Westman Atelier Brow Pencil. OK, I’ve come around to this product. (Thank you, Mom, for the rec!) I was initially off put by the precision it requires in application, but now I use it for a very specific reason: my brows are uneven, and one has a little bald patch. I apply this to fill in that blank and even out my brows more generally, almost like I’m coloring over them with a colored pencil. Then I use the Kosas gel to tint and hold everything in place.

Finally, a handful of random beauty-related items…





P.S. More recent honest beauty reviews of hyped beauty products here and here.

P.P.S. What are your top beauty tips?

P.P.P.S. Confidence is quiet; insecurities are loud.

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6 thoughts on “TikTok Beauty Buys I’m Eyeing + Recent, Rapid-Fire “Honest Beauty Reviews.”

  1. Sounding off to join you in underwhelm regarding the Charlotte Tilbury Setting Spray. It’s fine…but not special. I bought some on the advice of someone who told me she gets anxiety when she runs low, and all I can say is it must be doing something for her that it’s just not doing for me. I’ll use up the bottle, but won’t repurchase.

    1. Interesting! I’m on the fence now. I keep hearing such polarizing views — “it’s the only way to make makeup last!” and “it does nothing.” Ahh!

  2. May I recommend La Roche Posay Cicaplast for an alternative to AB?? I know it sounds crazy, but i was given a weeks worth sample of AB and while lovely… I truly couldn’t tell the difference between the two. And at $16… give it a whirl! 🙂

  3. Hi Jen, love your content and your writing! Find that Bader is best for days under make up and that Goop is amazing for night when you are dry, especially over Retina or acids, or on no make up days. I’m in my 50s, skin care obsessed and have tried everything out there. Keep going back to these two. Although have recently found that UBeauty’s Super Hydrator is a less expensive option for Bader. Merry Christmas!

    1. Thank you so much for these tips! Will definitely try using the Goop for evening. I also like the UBeauty product, but have only tried the tinted one and think I might prefer an untinted! Going to try that next.


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