I am very uncomfortable with change.
It could be anything from a big shift, like a new job, to a small one, such as trying new makeup.
While this character trait (or deficit, if you ask my mom) makes me extremely loyal (yay!), it also shrinks my world in certain ways (boo) — and my goal is to try something new at least once a month to broaden my horizons.
To you, trying out a new brand of makeup may be a minuscule step, but it’s still a step and my therapist and I stand by that self-imposed rule.
The timing of this makeup refresh, as I barely used any during Covid-19, was overdue and necessary— makeup can expire, rendering it crusty (gross).
Off to Ulta I went in search of some Morphe products that would hopefully live up to my never-varying stable of makeup essentials.
First on the list is primer, because that’s what I put on first.
Last week, I’d have told you if you touched my Charlotte Tilbury My Brightening Youth Glow, I’d go full-Maddie from ‘Euphoria’ and threaten to physically fight you. It’s one of my extravagances and I love it so much that my jaw only clenches a tiny bit when paying $55 for a small tube — it is THAT good.
Primer is meant to blur imperfections, shrink your pores (although my pores are pretty small), color-correct skin tone and, most importantly, at least for me, make wrinkles less noticeable.
The ones around my eyes are noticeable but since I’m not quite at the Botox-the-hell-outta-my-face stage yet, primer does the job.
To say I was skeptical about any other primer is putting it mildly, but I picked up Morphe’s Luminous Complexion Primer, a fraction of the price of my beloved Charlotte Tilbury and in a much bigger tube. While patting it into my creases and pores, I realized my snap judgement was way off. Not only did it turn my face into a smoother canvas for war paint, but it was soft, silky, lightweight and blurred and softened my imperfect complexion.
Will I trade in my Charlotte Tilbury just yet? Probably not — I have a brand new tube. But I will definitely use the Morphe primer and be more than happy with the results.
Tinted Face Oil
Since I don’t use foundation, mostly because I’m afraid of not blending it in and getting that line that screams I AM WEARING FOUNDATION BUT DID NOT BLEND IT CORRECTLY, I use a tinted bb cream. For years I’ve been using Kosas Tinted Face Oil Foundation, which is close to a foundation but lightweight and gives you a clean, dewy glow.
I went with Morphe’s Glowstunner Hydrating Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30 Broad Spectrum Sunscreen — a steal compared to the Kosas brand, and it doubles as a moisturizer with SPF 30 protection.
Three for one in a single product at half the price? Yes, please.
There are 15 shades to choose from, and I chose medium glow 5. The description says “This lightweight formula provides SPF 30 protection and a hydrating glow for a natural-looking, non-greasy finish. Totally sheer and buildable, the finish easily blends into skin and stretches to fit multiple skin depths and undertones.”
Morphe over-delivered — it’s actually better than the expensive brand I’d sworn by and recommended to anyone who’s unsure of their foundation application skills.
There are over 50 lipsticks in my makeup arsenal and I MAYBE use three on a regular basis — no loyalty here, I’m a lipstick enthusiast. But I do swear by a certain lip gloss: NARS Orgasm Oil-Infused Lip Tint.
The sheer lip oil is a “universally flattering Orgasm shade” (apparently, the color of an orgasm is pink with a tinge of copper).
It’s NOT super sticky, so if the wind blows you won’t have to remove your hair from your lips, and that’s important!
So I looked for a comparable non-sticky gloss and chose the Morphe Lip Gloss in the Famous Shimmering Nude shade.
The gloss comes in 10 flattering shades and for $16 less than my NARS Orgasm (again, it’s pink) — I really loved it!
It’s a soft, buttery high-shine gloss that’s buildable — you can make it subtle or layer it on for a more dramatic finish. Most importantly? It isn’t sticky! The Morphe lip gloss is a winner.
Onward to the palette part of my makeup reboot.
Eyeshadow palettes have become a huge seller in the last few years, with celebs and makeup artists collabing with brands to give us unique colors and combinations. One could say there are too many to choose from, but I will not say that because I live for a great palette.
My favorite go-to is Iconic London’s Day to Slay Eyeshadow Palette.
I went in search of a similar (but less expensive) option and discovered Morphe’s 35D Desert Bouquet Artistry Palette, which is comparable color-wise and only $26 at Ulta. Plus, it has 15 more shades with matte and shimmer finishes!
Some of the pinks are a bit pinker, but I love a solid fuschia on the lids. The colors are close, with Morphe’s shades even being a bit bolder.
Eyebrows somehow became a major focal point of women’s faces in the last five years, which is great if yours are thick and not the sparse, wild coarse ones I have.
I’ve always used Benefit’s Gimme Brow + Tinted Volumizing Eyebrow Gel, not because I particularly loved it, but it was easy and worked fine. So I was excited to try Morphe’s Micro Brow Pencil as it looked like a good wax brow tamer — into the basket it went.
And OMFG — I have been searching for this eyebrow miracle forever, I just didn’t know it. Totally delivered on the promise of “filling, defining, and shaping” my brows “like nobody’s business.”
You just pencil it in and brush your brows into place with the spoolie end, “and you’re left with natural-looking brows that wow.”
I was wowed. For $6, an absolute must-have bargain.
We’re almost done — the second to last attempt to “beat my face” (bless you, ‘Drag Race’) is mascara. I’ve seen makeup artists and YouTube tutorials do their lashes first, but I do not have the artistic chops to do makeup AROUND my finished eyelashes. What if I smear it (I would def smear it) and have to start over? Hard pass from me.
My ride or die mascara is Benefit’s Roller Lash. It curls, it lifts, it’s magic — likely due to the “Hook ‘n’ Roll brush,” that grabs, separates, and lifts individual lashes.
I went with Make It Big Volumizing Mascara which promises lengthy, volumized lashes that will not flake. It also comes in a mini size for $8.
I have to say that Morphe’s mascara does what it promises to do — my lashes looked like extensions and hit the top of my eyelids when I blinked. My only issue was it took a little longer to apply without the special brush, but a few extra minutes is a fair trade for luxurious, long lashes. This one’s a keeper.
Finally, the finishing touch is setting spray.
My go-to has been Anastasia Beverly Hills Dewy Set — as you can see from my previous makeup essentials, I’m trying to achieve that glowing, luminous, fresh-faced look of a 17-year-old.
I’m not over the moon about Dewy Set, so trying out another option was fun and I was not let down.
Coming in with a savings of $10 is Morphe’s Luminous Setting Spray, and it exceeded my expectations. “Infused with coconut water, glycerin, and apple extract, this hydrating spray sets your makeup and seals in moisture, leaving you with a glowing finish.”
Did I look like a teenager? Nope. But was my skin shimmering and radiant? Yup!
These are just a few of the exceptional, less expensive cosmetic options Morphe has to offer — trust me, your bag and your face won’t regret it.
Which Morphe products are replacing your usuals? Let us know in the comments!
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