Brand Focus: The Balm

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Hey everyone!

Some of you may know I'm pretty obsessed with The Balm. I've been collecting some of their products ever since I picked up the Mary-Lou Manizer and most of them don't disappoint.

Let's dig into my The Balm stash and see what's worth the money. I'll even talk you through some similar products when I can.


Before I go into detail, I quickly want to address the price range and the packaging of the products. The Balm is always spot on with the designs on their packaging and it's one of the things that intrigues me the most about the brand. A lot of their products are packaged in flimsy looking cardboard,which might put you off buying it for the mid-range price tag and I must say I'm not a big fan of the little mirrors inside as I don't use them, EVER. But, hear me out, I think the cardboard packaging makes it so easy to travel with as it takes up less space and doesn't weigh anything. That being said, some of the packaging does come in plastic cases, but most of the face powders and eyeshadow palettes come in the cardboard packaging.

 Prices differ in certain shops here in Belgium so I can't really tell the exact price on them ;-)

The first thing I ever got from The Balm is the famous Mary-Lou Manizer. With it's very in-your-face champagne glow, it's one of the most talked about highlighters of the past year or two. I admit mine looks absolutely beaten up, but that's because I dropped it one day and because the texture of the product is so soft and buttery, it just crumbled apart. I thought it was a bit too expensive to just buy a new one (€20). In stead I decided to pick up the sisters: Cindy-Lou Manizer and Betty-Lou Manizer. For darker skin tones, those two could probably work as highlighters, for me they are more of a very pale blush (Cindy) which I tend to use as a blush topper when I apply cream blushes, and the other one is an actual bronzer for me (Betty) which is rather orange toned so it works better in summer. I think Mary-Lou is definitely worth the money. The other two? Well, if you're really digging the brand, I'd say it's not all the money in the world you spend on these, but I think I really didn't need a product like Betty-Lou Manizer when I already had the Hourglass bronzer. Those are quite similar in colour and finish.

I actually picked up all three right before they came out with the palette, which I decided to buy when I had a coupon code. It sounds silly, but I didn't want to take the big ones with me to Manchester and I thought this would be so much handier to travel with.


Moving on with some other face products of their range, the FratBoy blush has always intrigued me and it's such a pretty peach blush for spring and summer. It's super pigmented so this one is to be used with a light hand, but what I love about it is that it's matte. It reminds me of my Mac blush in the shade Melba, but a brighter version of that. I'm not really one to judge on staying power for blushes, I mean every blush in the worlds fades during the day, but I can always see just a bit left on my face. I'm very happy with the colour pay off and I think it was definitely worth getting this blush. This one also retails around the €20 mark.


The Balm Desert bronzer is a purchase inspired by KathleenLights, she used to rave about this all summer. I agree with her on the staying power and I adore the shade; it's a bit warmer than Benefit Hoola, but still in the same ashy-range of colours so it's perfect to contour with. I'd say it's similar to Hoola in terms of "darkness", so if you are very pale it might be too dark, but I find it works well on my skin in summer. Again, this one is very pigmented so be careful! Also: the price tag on this is the same as the FratBoy, CabanaBoy and Downboy blushes.


A daintly little ultra-travel-friendly palette is the Autobalm Driver Licence palette, which I picked up in the "shade" California. There's a Hawaii one as well and I believe that one is cooler toned. This palette contains four shades that can be used for different purposes: of cours all four can be used as eyeshadow shades, but one is also a blush, one is a highlighter, one is a very fine brow shade and one is great for lining the eyes as well. The pigmentation on all of these shades is stunning and I guess you have everything you need in this little one. I believe I bought it for €19 so again, along the same price range as the face powders.


Moving on to eyes while we're at it, the Meet Matt(e) Nude palette has been a serious game-changer for me. The pigmentation is there, like with every other one of the powder products I've tried out. The shades are all matte and quite neutral, but I feel like they are more diverse than a palette like Urban Decay Naked Basics, for example. In this palette are some beautiful cool tones like a dusty rose, a mauvey purple and some grey shades as well (I was really lacking shades like this in my collection!) but you also get the warmer browny tones, which is pretty amazing; The eyeshadow pans are so big, but still I find €40 quite expensive for 9 shades (although I don't mind spending €50 on 12 shades in the Urban Decay palettes...). I got this one 25% off so I thought that would be a great time to try it out for less money. I'd definitely recommend it if you are lacking in the matte shades department and looking for a great matte palette, but if you're not really into that, I think you can live without it.


Lastly we have some eyeliners. The Mr. Write Now twist-up pencils come in different colours and I have two matte ones (I believe all of them are matte except one coppery golden one): Vince B. Charcoal, which is a dark grey shade, and Wayne B. Olive, which is an olive khaki green colour. They are not as creamy as I expected them to be, but they do last a long time on the eyes. I don't think they are a must-have though, rather an extra thing to have in your collection. I love wearing coloured eyeliner so I'm especially in love with the green one. These are €19 on FeelUnique.com but I'm not sure what I payed for them here in Belgium (so annoying I can't find the prices on the stores website).

To finish off the post we have the ultimate jet black matte liquid liner of all times: Schwing liquid liner. It's a pain in the ass to get off because it's so pigmented and has such a great staying power, but I gladly take that with the amazingness of this product. It's very easy to apply, but I'm afraid it's not as easy to touch up if you go wrong. If you've practiced with the felt tip liners a bit, this one is amazing. I love how I can grab it quite closely to the actual brush, to keep a steady hand. It retails for €15 on FeelUnique.com and I think I paid €14 in stores in my country. I think this is well worth the money, considering felt tip liners like the l'Oréal one are also around the €10 mark over here.



Congrats if you've made it up until this point! If you have any questions left or if I forgot to touch something in particular, please let me know in the comments. I think it's quite clear I'm super duper in love with The Balm products! Luckily they are quite easy to get a hold of in Belgium and I've heard they sell them at certain Superdrugs too now!


Have you tried anything from The Balm that you absolutely loved? Let me know down below.



Lots of love,
Charline
xoxo




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