Anti-Holiday: Checking Out Circa Beauty.

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I usually don’t go in for celebrity makeup lines. Collaborations with a well known company? Sure. But when they’re created by celebs, I usually roll my eyes and keep it moving. If you check out my very first Kat Von D post, you’ll see that I was completely wrong about that line, and yeah I was wrong about this one too. Maybe I should just shut the hell up and just try stuff, whaddya think?

I’m still not sure or not if Eva Mendes is the creator of the line, in all the articles that I’ve read and even on the Circa website, she’s listed as the creative director. In  any case, Circa debuted in Walgreens last year sometime, unfortunately there is only one Walgreens in my area that carries it, and as far as I know, in the SE that’s the only place that carries it. I’d been checking it out for a while, but the prices are quite dear for drugstore and so I held off. When Walgreens launched their beauty enthusiast program about a month ago, which rewards you with a crap ton of points when you spend on beauty, I decided to go ahead and give it a shot.

Unlike previous times where I would get everything in a line, I decided to start off slowly. Mostly because there are things that I will not wear like the lipsticks, I don’t care how matte you think they are, if they’re not liquid lipsticks they will transfer. And there are things that will irritate me to no end if I had to keep looking at them, like tiny three shadow palettes. So, no.

First let me say that I love the packaging, for a drugstore brand it looks incredibly high end, and it looks more high end than some high end brands that I’ve used. I got the Colour Balance foundation, which is a medium to full coverage foundation that’s supposed to help even out the skin tone, whilst blurring imperfections.  The range isn’t huge, there are only ten shades the last two of which are black girl friendly, but not besties. The foundation is housed in a clear glass bottle with a black plastic cap with gold accents, and a pump.

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The shade that I picked up was 09 Golden Tan, I almost got 10 Cocoa, because all of the 09’s seemed to be gone. I was a little bit worried about getting 10 though as it looked a bit red, and then I saw the last 09 hiding all the way at the back of the display. I’m very happy that I did end up getting 09 because it does oxidise, not as bad as some others that I’ve used, but enough that I will still be able to wear this shade in the first half of summer. Golden Tan is a medium dark with deep gold undertones and for $15.99 you 1oz of product. Swatches below.

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I wasn’t expecting a whole lot from this foundation, but I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised. It blended effortlessly and seamlessly. I didn’t need as much concealer even though I didn’t do full coverage. I used one pump to get the coverage that I did. The consistency at first somewhat runny, but I smacked the hell out of the bottle to get it back together and it  became more creamy. The lasting power is pretty good as well, I fell asleep with this on and woke up to no transfer onto my pillow cases and my face still looking put together. It’s also really light and I couldn’t feel it on my skin at all, and it sets to a demi matte satin finish.

Not really sure why, I got the Face Time Pressed Powder, it really was an impulse buy as I well and truly do not need another powder. I got the darkest shade in 06, and the colour is a rich brown with a very golden undertone. The case once again is stunning and it comes with a rather high end vegan leather puff and a mirror on one half of the lid. I’m actually pretty happy for the puff as lately I’ve been using them with powders because I’ve found that they set powder much better than a brush.

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Once again, this isn’t extremely dark so ladies that are darker than my complexion are gonna be left out in the cold when it comes to choices here. While I like this powder on it’s own, with the foundation, it’s a pretty bad idea, for me anyway. It’s not strictly speaking full coverage, however when added on top of the foundation it gives you a very full coverage matte finish, that can look cakey if you’re not prepared for it. I wasn’t, and although I like a matte finish, I found this to be a little bit too matte when combined this way. On it’s own with some concealer, it’s great though if you don’t need a whole lot of coverage. Swatch below.

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If given the choice, I will always choose cream over powder blush, and as this is the first thing that I gravitate towards in a line, even before foundation, I’m glad that Circa gave me the choice. The line has three different types of blushes, four creams, six powders and three multi-use lip and cheek stains. I got one Ultrasuede Cream Blush in Capri and almost got a powder blush as well before realising that they were essentially the same colour. The multi-use products I stayed away from because the ones in my Walgreens had started to separate and looked grody.

The packaging for these look a lot like my Burberry Lip & Cheek Blooms and perform similarly albeit much more sheer. Capri is a deep rose with a golden overtone, as such while it looks great in person, when photographed, it can barely be seen on me. The texture is very mousse-like and comes housed in a glass jar with the same black and gold cap as the foundation.

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The other three colours consisted of a baby pink, and two shades that looked too peachy to be compatible with my undertones. These will run you $12 each, the powder blushes are also $12 and the multi-use tints are $9. They’re really small and as sheer as they are, I feel like if this is one of the few blushes that you own, you’ll go through it pretty quickly. Swatch below.

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Below I’m wearing everything in the post including the powder. I’ve included a couple different lighting conditions so that you can see exactly how it looks including that very golden undertone and how it oxidises. The first two photos are in shade, the second is natural sunlight and the last is a few days later in full sunlight after a few hours of wearing the foundation and it had oxidised a bit.

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Final Thoughts.

I like this line a lot more than I thought I would, I was in fact quite prepared to hate everything about it. Didn’t happen. I mean it’s great to be able to afford high end makeup and being able to test and review it, but a lot of people can’t afford higher end brands which is why finding good drugstore brands, especially  those that are accessible to WOC always excites me.  If you don’t have a local Walgreens or yours doesn’t carry Circa, as some don’t, you can always find it at Walgreens online.

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