Monday, February 17, 2014

benefit IT'S POTENT! eye crem

I am so excited to be talking about Benefit Cosmetics It's Potent! Eye Cream today as I have been coveting it for SO long and finally purchased the full-size.  I have been using sample sizes I got free with purchase for the last few months to make sure I loved it because the full size is pretty pricey but after I used up the last sample I decided I needed to make the splurge.  The full size is $34.00 for 0.5 oz but as you only need a little I feel like the price isn't too bad.

I was slightly skeptical about it at first as it claims to fade dark circles, smooth fine lines and restore elasticity and firmness which are some pretty big claims.  But I am happy to report it definitely does do all of those things.  I have been applying this every morning for the past three months and can report that the darkness under my eyes has seriously reduced.  Also, any wrinkles I have are much less defined.  My whole under eye area feels completely different and I couldn't be more happy.

If you are on the fence about shelling out the cash for this one I would recommend getting your hands on a sample size first because you can get a good weeks worth out of each one so you have plenty of time to test.  You can easily get samples by just asking at Sephora or they often come as a gift with purchase from Ulta or

bright eyed & beautified eye enhancing tool -

p.s. I have been using the tarte bright eyed & beautified eye enhancing tool (you can find it for over 50% off here) to apply it lately and am really happy with the results.  If you want a full review please just let me know!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Mascara Monday | RIMMEL scandalEYES Retro Glam Mascara

Welcome to another Mascara Monday, hope you had a great weekend!  Today we are here to talk about the Rimmel ScandalEyes Retro Glam Mascara.  This is one that I picked up in London in December and have been having fun playing with for the last few weeks but was holding out on reviewing it until it came live to the US but it is now HERE!  I had absolutely no intentions to pick this up in Boots but the display was so beautiful and the title of Retro Glam was very enticing.

For the most part I really like this mascara.  It is super black, not too wet or too dry, coats the lashes really well and does create the 'wide-eyed' look as the website claims.  However, application is somewhat of a nightmare.  The brush is absolutely terrifying - it is a huge hour-glass shape with a strange plastic bit on the end.  I think the shape is what helps coat the lashes so well but the way the bristles are placed and the bit on the end also contribute to an overabundance of product on the wand and massive clumping (even though it claims to be clump-free).

These pictures are after just one coat and while my lashes do look quite long and in person they fan out beautifully, you can tell there is some clump-age and the finish is not natural at all.

This is not a mascara I would repurchase as it was just too difficult to work with but I will be finishing up the tube as it's nice enough.  If it is one you are interested in trying the price is definitely right, only about $5.49 most places and you can often find it on sale at Ulta for even less.

Hope you all have a great Monday - stop by our YouTube for a fun video, we are putting them up every Tuesday and Thursday!

Monday, January 20, 2014


 You know how sometimes those little totally unnecessary extras, that you defintely don't need, can brighten your day?  Like an extra cherry on top of your sundae, a vase full of flowers on your nightstand or a candle burning in every room?  For me, my favorite little extra is highlighters, highlighters, highlighters.  Although some days I may breeze out the door with my eyebrows undone or without contouring, I never leave off the highlighter.  It's that extra little step that sometimes is only noticeable to me but always makes me feel great.

Sunbeam by benefit - 0.5 oz for $26.00 (pictured is the travel size)

Sunbeam is a great liquid highlighter that is great to use on the cheekbones, down on the cheeks, on the eyelids and brow bones.  It looks quite gold and maybe a little bit scary when first applied but it is very easy to blend out with your fingers.  Once blended it leaves behind a very light gold highlight.  The only con I can think of is that it doesn't wear that great, it does tend to fade off the skin by about midday.

Watt's Up by benefit - 0.2 oz for $30.00 (pictured is the travel size)

Watt's up is a benefit cult favorite for a reason.  It is a cream stick highlighter that blends out very well to a powdery texture. It is not quite as gold as sunbeam but has much more iridescence.   This one I love to use on my cheekbones and very lightly on my brow bones.  You do need to be careful when applying watt's up as a little goes a long way!  I learned this the hard way as the first time I applied I went a little overboard and looked like a disco ball all day.

Beat the Blues by MeMeMe Cosmetics 0.41 oz for $9.00

I got this one in a Glossybox a few months ago and was really hesitant about it at first.  When I first got it I thought it was a nail polish because I had never seen a liquid highlighter that was so pink before!  From what I have found it is pretty much only good to use on the cheekbones as it just too pink for anywhere else.  However, if you are going for a nice pink cheek then this highlighter is perfect!  You only need a few dabs then you can blend it out very easily and it will leave a pink sheen that lasts almost all day.

Mineral Glow Pearls by Physicians Formula - 0.28 oz for $13.99

If you are new to highlighters or don't want to risk disco ball territory than these pressed pearls by Physicians Formula are for you!  I love this highlighter because it is extremely versatile, it can be applied to your cheekbones, brow bones, above your brows, your cupid's bow and the list goes on.  It works well in so many places because it just leaves behind a light sheen.  It also seems to last forever, I think I have had this one for at least a year and it is still going strong.

Mary-Lou Manizer by thebalm - 0.3 oz for $24.00

Oh Mary-Lou, how I love you.  This is my all-time favorite highlighter and the one I find myself reaching for the most.  It is a bit on the pricey side but it is absolutely worth it.  It is a light champagne colored highlight that is definitely more intense that the one by Physician's Formula but as it is not too strongly colored it is very easy to use.  I like to swipe this on my cheekbones and my brow bones as it gives the nicest wash of highlight without being too intense - it definitely falls on my list of Holy Grail products.

So that is it, all about highlighters!  I wish I could have shown swatches of how these looked on the skin but they are incredibly hard to photograph.  Do you have any favorite highlighters I should be testing out?

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Revlon Parfumerie - Scented Nail Enamels

If you know me you know I am a person with a lot of words, like a LOT but, I just cannot find the words to accurately express how freaking excited I am for these brand new Revlon Parfumerie nail polishes.  They are one of the coolest nail polish releases I have seen in quite awhile.

I can remember back in the day picking up "scented nail polish" at the drug store and even though they promised to smell like all the fruits in the Skittle bag they each shared an identical smell - nail polish!  These are not like that at all, they come in 24 different scents (shades?) and they are incredible.

This one is Moonlit woods and is a really soft lilac color.  I didn't love the application of this because even after three coats (over a base coat) I still didn't feel like it was opaque enough for me.  The scent however is very nice, almost like a toned down Mahogany Woods from Bath & Body Works.  The website says the fragrance will last one day but I found that I was still getting whiffs of it over 24 hours after application.

The second one I have is Wintermint and it is AMAZING!  It is a really pretty mint color, which is always a favorite, with big and small round, blue glitter.  Pictured I have it applied over Moonlit Woods (top two nails) and with four coats on it's own (bottom two nails).  I actually prefer this on it's own even though you need four coats to get complete opacity but it looks awesome once dried.  The very best thing about this one though is hands down the scent.  It is so minty and fresh and it's even scented enough that you can smell it while applying which is a big perk.  I am really hoping the scent sticks around because it is so unique and refreshing.  

Have any of you picked up any colors, or scents, I should try out?  I have been trolling the website and there are a few colors that are calling my name (I'm looking at you Ginger Melon)!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Mascara Monday - Kardashian Beauty Whip Lash

Welcome to 2014!  After a brief hiatus Sister Duet is back and better than ever!

So we are kicking off 2014 with a review of the Kardashian Beauty mascara called Whip Lash.  In the picture I am showing the old packaging when the brand still was "Khroma" but since I purchased this the Kardashians have lost a giant lawsuit and thus the rights to the name Khroma.  But, all the products in the new Kardashian Beauty line are pretty much exactly the same as they were with Khroma and in most cases the names and packaging are identical.

I had this mascara hiding in a drawer for a really long time because I am a mascara fiend and always have about a bazillion waiting in the wings to try out but once I started using it I was kicking myself for waiting so long!

The wand has stiff, synthetic bristles that taper quite nicely at the point which is great for getting the inner corner lashes.  The most unique part of the wand is that it has quite short bristles on one side and much longer more dense bristles on the other.  I have never seen a mascara like this but it works absolutely brilliantly.  You can use one side to thoroughly coat all your lashes from root to tip which helps volumize and then the other side to spread out the mascara and help lengthen.  This helps you decide whether you would like either a natural look or more dramatic.

 I am so impressed with this mascara especially given that it is a newer brand and it is only $9.99 (although you can often find a buy one, get one 50% deal at Ulta for an even better bargain).  It does everything that it claims to by giving thicker, darker and longer lashes.  My one con is that it is not as easily buildable as I like.  You have to work quite quickly to build up layers while it is we otherwise it can easily become clump and get a little flaky.  

One thing I just noticed on the Ulta website that I don't remember seeing when I first purchased this mascara is the new formula is now claiming to enhance lash health over time.  If this mascara can have longterm benefits AND look good while wearing it will definitely be a must have!

Hope you all had a fantastic 2013 and are excited for this brand new year!  Vanessa and I are so excited to be back into the swing of things with blogs and videos and are really excited to begin to grow Sister Duet and meet more of you lovely readers and viewers.

Totally non-mascara related but here are my two little assistants who were basking in the sun and completely side eyeing me while I was having a mini photoshoot for this post.  Crazy dogs!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Lorac Special Effects Mascara Review

I got this Lorac Special Effects mascara in my summer Hautelook bag and it's been sitting in a makeup drawer waiting to be tried out.  Well, I finally whipped it out a couple of weeks ago and I have really been liking it. 

Here are my bare lashes - yikes!

Here is after one coat of primer and one coat of mascara.

As you can see, it's not volumizing in any way (although it doesn't claim to be) but it does help to separate and lengthen lashes. 

To apply you brush one coat of the primer onto your lashes and let it dry for about 15-30 seconds.  The only times I have had issues with application is if I don't let it dry long enough.  If the primer is too wet it makes the mascara get a bit goopy.  After about 30 seconds seems to be the best dry time and then you can sweep on some mascara.

I don't think this is the most amazing mascara I have ever tried.  It doesn't create show stopping lashes by any means but it is a great, every day product.  I know that when I put it on it will always look good, won't smudge or flake and will stay all day.

To check out the unboxing where I discovered this little baby take a look at the video below.

If there are any other products from this bag you would like a review on, just let me know!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

25 Questions Tag

Want to know more about Sister Duet? Well do we have the video for you!  Awhile back we did the 25 Questions Tag that was floating around YouTube and we thought we would bring it to our blog with some extra juicy little tidbits that you didn't get in our video.

Question 1: Do you have any pets?

Answer: Vanessa has a Boston Terrier named Lola who loves to wear lipstick!

Amanda has a Boston Terrier named Ivy and two mixes named Pandora and Orion who basically run her household.

Question 3: What's the weather like?

Answer: "HOT!"

This is the weather forecast for this week in October - yeah it's fall but it's still in the 90's. Yuck!

Question 10:  Have you ever been to a different country?

Answer: Yes!  We both really love to travel and have been lucky enough to have been able to do so.

Question 14: How many siblings do you have?

Answer: Three.  We have an older brother, then us and a younger sister.  We have to be clear to say "younger" not "little" sister as Vanessa is the oldest sister but the tiniest one!

Yes, this drawing is to scale!

Question 16: When is your birthday?

Answer: Vanessa's is June 2 and Amanda's is December 31.

Question 21: What is your perfect pizza topping?

Answer:  Well, Vanessa is actually allergic to dairy so she has a hard time find a pizza she can safely eat.  Her dream pizza would be a soy, barbecue pizza.  Amanda's favorite would be something loaded with lots of veggies and cheese.

We hope this helped you guys learn a few more random things about us (and we hope you like Amanda's awesomely rendered stick figures)!  For more info you can check out the full video below.

If there are any other things you are burning to know about us just leave a comment below - we would love to do another video like this again soon!