Award-Winning Makeup Put to the Test!

Every year Allure Magazine tests thousands of beauty products and gives awards to the best in a variety of categories.  Makeup Artist Kendra Stantion put the products in the "Cheap Thrills" category to the test and stopped by to tell us what she thought. 

For more makeup and fashion information and tips follow Kendra on her blog.

Here are Kendra's thoughts on Allure Magazine's "Cheap Thrills" winners:

 CoverGirl Intense ShadowBlast Primer + Rich Shadow in Brown Bling, $7.99

What Allure Says:”The built-in primer in this liquid-to-powder shadow means the rich mink-y hue goes on...and stays on.”

My Experience:  I never would have thought to purchase this product, but it actually does a great job of staying on for a good amount of time. I love wearing bronze and gold shades, so I enjoyed the color. I thought this was a great start to the Cheap Thrills adventure.

  • Essence Lipstick in Creamy Nude, $2.49

What Allure Says: “Even Goldilocks couldn't find fault with this shade: It's not too beige; it's not too pink. It's just right.”

My Experience: It sounds like Allure chose this lipstick based on color, so I would have to agree with their description of the shade. Also, I enjoyed the texture of this lipstick, but you will definitely have to keep it in your purse for touch up’s as it comes off easily. You really can’t beat the $2.49 price tag!

  • E.L.F. Eyeshadow "C" Brush, $3

What Allure Says: “Its downy bristles pick up loads of pigment and blend smoky eyes flawlessly.”

My Experience: For the most part I agree with them.  My only complaint is that the quality of these brushes is very hit and miss. Sometimes you get a good one; sometimes you get a bad one. I know it’s only $3.00, but I have seen some good-quality $3.00 makeup brushes in other brands. 


  • Hard Candy Fox in a Box in Skinny Dipping, $6

What Allure Says: “Swirl together the orange and bronze shades in this duo for a believable sun-kissed flush.”

My Experience: From beginning to end, I think this is a fabulous product that could be sold for more than $6.00! I like the packaging, the mixed colors and the way this bronzer blends into the skin. It’s just an all around great pick!

  • Avon Ultra Color Rich Moisture Seduction Lipstick in Tangerine, $8

What Allure Says: “We weren't sure what to expect from this Creamsicle-swirl lipstick, but the soft coral shade looks positively delectable on. And it leaves lips dewy, not dry.”

My Experience: I have been surprisingly shocked by Avon recently.  They are really re-vamping their style and many of their products are getting positive recognition. This is probably the reason this lipstick made it onto this list.  When I applied this, it immediately quenched my dry lips thirst.  However, while it did wonders for my chapped lips, the color pay off was minimal...though it did give off a beautiful tint of coral. This lipstick reminds me of a $30 lipstick I have been loving. It is definitely worth $8.00!

  • Almay Oil-Free Makeup Eraser Sticks, $5.50 for 24


What Allure Says: “The Best of Beauty award–winning makeup remover is now available in cotton swabs to clean up mascara, shadow, or liner smears.”


My Experience: What is so great about this product is that you can take it anywhere and not have to deal with the mess of a traditional makeup remover. So for practicality, I can see why it made the list. However, at this price, each cotton swab costs 22 cents -- which is a bit outrageous. I guess you should only use this on a special occasion or just plan on paying $5.50 every 24 days or less on eye-makeup remover. I know the bottle usually lasts 3 times as long as that.

  • Neutrogena 3-in-1 Concealer for Eyes, $8.99

What Allure Says: “Smooth, creamy, brightening: There are lots of adjectives to describe this cover-up, but one that doesn't apply? Cakey.”

My Experience: I had never even heard of this product until this list came out!  But it really does do a good job of providing an adequate amount of coverage while still allowing the skin to shine through.  The only downside is that there are a minimal amount of colors to choose from.

  • Maybelline New York The Falsies Volum' Express Mascara, $7.77

What Allure Says: “Makeup artists say big, bold lashes start at the roots. This curved wand, which sits perfectly along the lash base, makes the effect easy.”

My Experience:  I have wanted to check out this mascara for a while now to see what all of the hype was about. So I did.  Here is my conclusion: mascara is just one of those personal choice things -- what you dislike could be your next-door neighbor's favorite thing.  Personally, I thought it did a great job lengthening and it was easy to build layers.  But when the word “falsies” is in the name of the product, that it what I expect will happen to my lashes.  It did not.

  • L'Oréal Paris Colour Riche Lipcolour in British Red,$8.95

What Allure Says: “British, French, American, what have you: This ultrafoxy red is one thing all countries can agree on.”

My Experience: Yet again another lipstick that will surely need touching up after you take a sip of coffee. But the color is beyond beautiful, so perhaps you can blot your lips to stain them and then go over them again with this shade. It really is gorgeous!

  • Jergens Natural Glow Daily Facial Moisturizer, $8.99

What allure Says: “This foolproof gradual self-tanner makes it impossible to turn yourself into a jack-o'-lantern. “

My Experience: This is by far one of the best purchases I have ever made.  It helps me keep a bit of warmth on my skin even when the sun doesn't come out.  I love how it builds to the color you want without looking entirely creepy.

  • Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes, $6.49

What Allure Says: “With the perfect saturation level, these wipes gently melt away even waterproof makeup. “

My Experience: This is my biggest must have of this entire list! I take this with me everywhere, from photo shoots to everyday life.  It has made a home amongst my regular items because it takes off makeup like a pro. I wouldn’t use anything else!


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