Weekly Cheap Secret:

I seriously do not know how or why I haven’t reviewed this product sooner. I guess it is one that I use so frequently that I forget about it? I really didn’t mean to take it for granted. This is a product that I really like and it retails for under $6.

Maybelline Dream Mousse Blush has a mousse texture. It blends nicely and feels weightless on the skin. It works great on my normal skin type. I love that it feels like it isn’t there at all. This texture feels much more expensive than what the product retails for. I’ve used $30 blushes that were going for this effect and couldn’t achieve it. I’m not naming names. There aren’t many colors available. There are six to be exact. However, there are a few I really like. ( I loved Whipped Strawberries but I can’t find it on the website. That was the perfect flushed pink for pale skins.) I like Pink Frosting, a pale pink shimmer that I usually use as a highlighter, and Peach Satin, a sheer pale peach. Both colors are sheer so I choose to layer them and layer them for more color. I apply this blush with my fingertips. I only use a tiny amount. I rub it on to the cheeks. There is no tugging since this product has such a smooth texture. I layer and layer until I get what I want. I’ve used deeper colors (Cloud Wine) and “one coat” was enough to get what I wanted. It doesn’t streak with extended wear. Like I said before, my skin is normal, rarely super dry or oily. When I dip my fingers into the pot, I occasionally get little clumpy Maybelline Dream Mousse bunnies. This doesn’t bother me. I’ll either wipe it on the rim of the jar or I was going to use that much cream blush anyways, so it doesn’t matter. All that matters is that it doesn’t clump or streak on my skin. It doesn’t do that. (It is gross when it gets under the nails. Sometimes I use the end of a makeup brush to dip it out onto my hand, then my finger tips so that I’m not digging in the pot.)

My complaints are that the colors are limited. Just like all drugstore makeup, they start with a few perfect colors that compete with department store brands but then get rid of them for unknown reasons. There aren’t enough colors for medium to deep skin tones.  If you are pale with normal skin this can be a perfect blush for you. It looks natural, somehow the shimmer ones look natural too. (Well, that is coming from me and I don’t mind shimmer on my complexion to give me a “plastic” look). It’s a great price at under $6. The packaging is hefty and glass. It seems like it is “more” than what it is.

It is available at most drugstores and drugstore.com.

This 1949 pic of Esther is a bit grainy but she is still looking great. This gal transitions nicely from mermaid to snow bunny. This is how you get this wintery look:

FACE: Esther’s complexion is luminous even in the harsh winter air. Apply an illuminating foundation during these “dull” times. A nice one with more coverage is Clarins True Radiance Foundation. Apply an illuminating concealer under the eye area if needed. Almay Bright Eyes Concealer + Eye Base is a multi-use product that provides coverage and not just “shimmer” like most eye illuminators. Apply this product to lids as a base as well. Set makeup with a loose powder. Bare Escentuals BareMinerals Hydrating Mineral Veil is nice for dry winterized skin. Apply one of my favorite complexion pick-me-ups, Benefit High Beam. down the cheek bone. Blend. Apply MAC Blushcreme in Ladyblush to cheeks. Apply as much as you see fit and blend.

EYES: Brows are pencil perfect. Fill in perfectly shaped brows with a powdery eye pencil like Lancome Le Crayon Poudre Powder Pencil (not pictured) in your shade. Sculpt in to place with the spoolie. Eyes are very simple and it is all about flirty lashes. The base has evened out your lid. Apply a nude-to-you shadow. For Esther, this would be something like Laura Mercier Mineral Eye Powder in Gemstone, a sheer light peach. If you feel a bit more definition is needed. Apply a light brown shade to the crease. Try a shade like Maybelline ExpertWear Eyeshadow in Silken Taupe. Line top lashes with an eye liner to “thicken” lashes. I would apply a smooth liner such as Neutrogena Nourishing Eye Liner . Curl lashes and apply a lengthening and curling mascara like L’Oreal Panoramic Curl Extreme Mascara. Apply a few coats to top lashes and one coat to bottom lashes for a wide-eyed look.

LIPS: This is such a classic beauty look. Apply a rose lip liner such as Dior Crayon Contour Lip Liner in Candy Rose . Apply a satin rose lipstick like Milani Velvet Lips Lipstick in Lavish, a mulberry rose. Add some shine with a clear lip gloss with silver shimmer such as Lipstick Queen Shine in Silver Saint. If you really want to warm up in winter, apply DuWop Moon Venom. This adds a silver sparkle and lots of lip plumping “burn”.

And for a fragrance to finish this flirty mermaid-turned-snowbunny-look, I recommend Karl Lagerfield Kapsule Light EDT, a mix of juicy citrus, flowers, and winter spices.

shu uemura’s Mirage spring 2009 collection is super soft and delicate with unexpected color combinations. The colors are supposed to be “whimsical and dreamy”. It plays with “light” and “shadow”.  It is very pretty and artistic like watercolors but I fear that it will truly wash me out. However, each separate color is very beautiful. I could wear all the colors, just not together.

FACE:There are two Defining Cheek Palettes. I really like these. Each contain a cream and a powder blush. Used together, the palettes create depth and highlight the complexion. I usually wear a cream blush with a powder blush over it. It wears for such a long time. There is Orange Phase which has a beautiful contouring taupe brown and a bright orange. I love an orange blusher. There is Misty Glow which is a peachy nude and a spring violet. These colors are also pretty but like the other, a bit hard to wear. These retail for $38.

EYES: There are two Eye Shadow Palettes. Each contains three eyeshadow shades. There is Utopia. It is a soft sage green, lighter neutral brown, and baby blue. The colors are very pretty, would look nice used in a room but I will have to play around with them more to see how they work on me. I find that the brown makes things look a bit mucky or too purpley. There is Fantasia. It has a baby pink, smoky plum, and light violet. The colors are very pretty and do work nicely together. I like the pink with the plum in the crease or the violet with the plum in the crease. This would be very pretty with hazel or green eyes. Both retail for $40. There are three Drawing Pencils for Eyes. The formula is nice and smooth. The colors are metallic and really do play with “light”. There is Light Blue, Lilac, and Pink. They retail for $19.

LIPS: There are three Rouge Unlimited Lipsticks. There is 347 which is a medium vivid pink, 768 which is a toned down berry, and 934 which is a warm nude. Each retail for $34. There is a Lip Duo & Tint. It contains a bright red lip tint with a sheer pink gloss. It is a very pretty springy duo. The pots are stackable. This duo retails for $32.

shu uemura cosmetics are usually very nice in quality. The colors are usually very interesting and still very wearable. I like a few of these shades but I didn’t purchase anything from this collection. I didn’t feel the colors really worked for me. I think the eyeshadows will look great on lighter complected blondes and brunettes. I think they will work nicely with blue, hazel and green eyes. The cheek colors are fun but really don’t work for everyone. The lipstick shades are pretty basic, but I do like the lip duo. It looks very “fresh” when paired with pale pink blush and a coat of mascara.


Yeah! It is bold and not pink! Don’t get me wrong, I like pink and it does make sense for spring but I am so tired of everybody doing that for this spring. At least Shiseido is giving me a rich lip on winter “kissed” skin. Winter usually offers all of the “holiday” red lip looks, but it is nice to see it carry over to spring. And somehow Dick Page has managed to make this red look look “springy”. It isn’t matte and it looks fresh with the dew drop blue lids.

EYES: They have relaunched the Hydro-Powder Eyeshadow in White Lights which is a sheer and shimmery white. If you have read the previous post on this product, then you know I love this formula. It is a cream to powder shadow that never budges or creases and has lots of shimmer. It retails for $24. There is also a relaunch of the Accentuating Creamy Eyeliner in Black. This product is easy to use and comes with its own little brush. It creates a classic cateye and goes for $26. Once again, I like this product but I like cheaper ones too. The model is getting her “blue” makeup look by lining with the cream liner and then layering over it with the White Lights Hydro-Powder Eyeshadow. It creates a nice water colored effect. And they’ve relaunched their Advanced Volume Mascara. I’ve never used it so I have no opinion.

LIPS: The Perfect Rouge Lipstick has been launched. It is supposed to be a comfortable, full color, moisturizing lipstick. It is pretty nice, but it does have a $25 price tag and I am finding drugstore lipsticks that I like better. It comes in many nice shades. I personally love Valentine (bright red) and Day Lily (bright orange) for spring and summer. There is the Smoothing Lip Pencil and it retails for $20. It is a nice long wearing lip pencil that you have to sharpen. I like the formula but once again I like some cheaper formulas too. It comes in many shades and Siren is a nice red. I love a red lip liner.

FACE: They have relaunched The Accentuating Color Stick in Champagne which is a nice pearly pink shimmer highlighter. I have this product and love it. It is smooth and finishes like a powder but doesn’t look dry. It looks great on the cheeks, down the nose, on the eyes, and even on the lips. It retails for $33.

I like the look. I’m not going to rush out to buy any of the products because I either have it or have stuff like it. But, I do like the look. It is a fresh red lip look without being too glossy. It’s a nice transition from winter to summer.

It’s a little late in the season to still be obsessing over orange lips, but I can’t help it. I’m wearing it until snow hits the ground. I’ve been inspired by this lovely picture of Rita Hayworth for Down to Earth. To get this pretty simple but glam look you need to apply foundation or concealer as and where needed. I recommend L’Oreal Quick Stick Instant Foundation and Lola Cosmetics Creme Concealer. Lightly dust face with a loose powder such as Bare Escentuals Mineral Veil using a big fluffy brush. Lightly brush brows with Anastasia Brow Gel for definition. Fill in brows with a brow pencil such as the one by Lancome if your brows are light or sparse. Brush a nude eyeshadow such as the lightest shadow in Physician’s Formula Matte Collection Eyeshadow Quad in Canyon Classics all over the lid. With a crease brush, blend in the lighter bottom row shade into the crease from the same compact. Smudge the darkest shade on the top lash line with a liner brush or Q-Tip. False lashes are must to get Rita’s look. Apply a strip of whispy false lashes such as Andrea Mod Strip Lashes. Coat with a mascara if you want extra drama. I think the lashes by themself will add enough but if you want more volume coat with a volumizing mascara. Line lashes with a liquid liner such as Prestige Liquid Liner in Black, the sponge tip of this liner will give you the Rita look that you want. Apply a tiny amount of mascara to bottom lashes or if you have thicker lashes anyways leave them alone. The drama is on the top lashline. Apply Ulta Cream Blush in Bashful onto the apples of your cheek with your fingertips. Don’t be scared to add a little more if needed. Apply a bit of foundation or concealer onto lips so that the lipstick will stay. No lipliner is needed. Apply MAC Lipstick in Morange onto lips. I love this shade. It is an electric orange with no shimmer but has a semi-satin finish. It also has a light vanilla flavor and wears for hours. You’re done. Just apply a lovely lady like fragrance. I’m thinking a gardenia or a jasmine scent such as Estee Lauder Tuberose Gardenia solid perfume dabbed onto the pulse points. You’ll be sure to turn heads like this bleached strawberry blonde.

I don’t own this and I haven’t even seen it in person. I do think it is cute but I do know that this has the extreme possibility of looking mega cheap in person. Sephora has Tarte Très Cheek Limited Edition Mini Cheek Stain Set which retails for $24 for three mini cheek stains and a gawdy makeup bag. I’ve seen the minis in the past and really liked them. They are small, way smaller than the full-size version. However, I find that I rarely use a whole full-size Cheek Stain anyways before it dries up funky. I liked the tiny sizes. This set has three shades that aren’t sold individually: Posh which is a ripe plum, Fierce which is a bright cool red, and Chic which is a golden infused peach. They look really pretty in the pic and do you need more cheek colors than that? That covers all the bases: purple, pink and peach. Anyways these are infused with all of those “good” things found in the t5 Superfruit Complex. That’s my raver name. I would love to give these a try even though I am not wild about that bag.

I love cream blush because it really sinks in and looks so natural and effortless. The first blush that I ever used was Benefit Benetint which I used for years during my adolescence. Switching over to powder was hard, typically this is reversed. Over the years I’ve been introduced to many different brands that have these twist-up cream blushes. I love them. My skin type is normal, so I can’t say if you have oily skin you’ll love these as much as I do, but there are some great gel stains on the market that I’ll list later. The joy is that these sticks are so easy to use. Just twist them up, dot on your cheeks and blend with your fingers. Repeat if necessary. They’re portable, many can be used on lips and eyes, and they are fool proof. Here are some brands that I’ve used over the years.

Shiseido The Makeup Accentuating Color Stick – This is my favorite formula. First, it is very blendable, has a powder like lightweight feel, never creases, and has a long life span. I have it in Peach Flush which is a medium peach tone, and I have Rosy Flush which is a bright hot pink that looks like a real flush. I also have Champagne Flush which is a glistening champagne that I use as a highlighter and on the eyes. These sell for $32.

DuWop Blush Therapy – This is a cram blush that looks like a gel. Personally, I didn’t like it because it is a bit too sheer. I have a tendency to OD on blush but that’s the look I like. If you are scared of blush then this is a product for you. I think it is impossible to over do it with these. The colors are very bold in the packaging but do not be scared of that. I used it in Hug which is a baby pink that did not show up on my pale skin at all. I later tried Retreat which is a reddish pink and showed up a little better. There are two more shades which I have not tried. Elixir which is a brown-ish pink and Vivaldi which is a bright fuchsia. These retail for $22. Also, I want to note that these have a cooling sensation and have a tendency to dry out big time so always have the lid on tight.

Clinique Blushwear Cream Stick – This product is NEW and I love it. It is in a sleek silver tube and has a cream to powder blushing formula. It’s oil-free and very buildable and blendable. I have Rosy Blush which is a deeper rose that looks so natural on. There are three other shades: Glow Blush, Peachy Blush, and Shy Blush. These retail for $18.50.

Avon Be Blushed Cheek Color Stick – (These have been called many names over the years, but I’m sure they are the same formula.) These are classic and creamy and are a little heavier in feel than the others that I have reviewed. However, the price is great at $8 plus Avon runs sales all the time. Currently, they are $5.99. Plus, it still manages to be sheer and easy to use. This formula is a must for dry cheeks. I’ve had it in Tropical Peach which is a warm burnt peach and Powder Pink which is a soft ethereal pink. The other shades are Blushing Nude, Crushed Berry, Golden Rose, Icy Petal, Mandarin Glow, and Pink Melon.

Bobbi Brown Cream Blush Stick – These are lightweight and “dewy” with just enough color. I’ve used Red Berry which is a deeper brownish red. I have to use this lightly but it looks so nice on. I’ve also used Clay, a muted rosy brown that is a perfect neutral and I’ve used Coral which is a lighter coral. The other shades are Desert Rose, Dusty Mauve and Pale Pink. All retail for $25.

Estee Lauder Tender Blush Sheer Stick – These offer a cream to powder formula that wears nicely. I like the formula, I just haven’t found a shade that I love in this brand yet. The colors are very neutral, sheer and safe. I had Natural which is a tawny taupe. The other colors are Bronze, Coral, Pink, Plum and Rose. These sell for $25.

NARS The Multiple – This is a cream to powder formula that is designed to be worn everywhere: lips, eyes, cheeks, contour, highlight, etc. There are a ton of shades. I like the formula but I found that it didn’t wear as long as I thought it should for the money. I have Orgasm, a lovely peachy pink shimmer, and St. Barts, a taupe shimmer. I could list the other shades but that would be boring. There are so many! The colors range from glistening pearl to rich bronzes.

Benefit Cosmetics Rush Hour – This is housed in a slim gold case that is designed to be portable and ready to go. Basically, this is lipstick that the company is marketing as blush too. You know that old trick you’d do in middle school because you’re mom wouldn’t let you wear “rouge”. It’s Sunberry, a dainty, soft plummy pink. It retails for $20 and is MUCH smaller than the others I have mentioned.

There are a ton more of these on the market. I know Laura Geller, Jane Iredale,  Lorac, and Too Faced make some. The ones that I have talked about today are the ones that I have tried and tested. If your skin is mega oily and you still want the convience of a blush stick, you should try a gel formula like Tarte Cheek Stain, Alison Raffaele Gel Blush, mark Cheek Stain, Sonia Kashuk Cheek Gel, or Sephora Brand Cheek Stain.