I got a recent Ask Afrobella question that dovetails nicely into this review/giveaway I’ve been working on. Away we go!
I just came across your website yesterday. It is indeed great! I found it through temptalia’s website (ed — which I adore. Check em out for makeup tips!).
Anyway, I did come across on your blog about afrobella’s on a budget. I am really interested in Queen Latifah’s collection for covergirl. To further my fascination with make-up, I decided to use the CG make up mirror on the website. It gave me the opportunity to choose colors based on a photo that I could upload from my computer (but of course it would have to meet the requirements of the mirror) or use one of the models instead. But my question is, since I am on budget right now, and can’t afford to indulge in MAC, benefit, and all the other brands that I am a fiend for. Could cover girl, Maybelline, and other drugstore make-up can up hold to the other pricier brands? Could I still look fabulous with cheaper make-up? Especially foundation, I have been worrying about that.
From a trouble el cheapo afrobella…..
Hola, el cheapo afrobella! In a nutshell, my answer to your questions are… sometimes, and definitely yes!
I’ve been extremely disappointed in pricey Sephora brands, and thrilled at the quality of drugstore brands. And honey, you can look fabulous beyond belief with just items you get at the drugstore. I’ve given loving reviews to Milani and HIP, two of my favorite drugstore brands. Now let me focus on what you’re most interested in — Cover Girl’s Queen Collection.
Few makeup lines have provoked such a polarized response. I think the bad feelings started with that misguided casting call last year, but look, even as recently as my last post, announcing the Every Woman is a Queen Contest I got totally opposing comments. One reader loves it, another called it a “a low-rent knock off of Imanâ€™s collection.” Ouch. Every bella is more than entitled to her own opinion, but I’d definitely say don’t knock it till you tried it. I tried it. There are wonderful aspects of Latifah’s makeup line. And there’s some not-so-impressive aspects too. Allow me to break it down for you item-by-item, so your shopping decisions can be informed. And yes, there’s a giveaway offer at the end of this post, so keep reading!
For foundation, Queen’s got you covered with three different options in a range of shades. The oil-free moisturizing makeup offers decent coverage, but I’m not a fan of liquid makeup for a reason. I found myself unexpectedly greasy, and by afternoon most of my t-zone coverage had sweated off in the Miami sun. For a self-described el cheapo afrobella, I’d recommend the Natural Hue Foundation. I prefer it by far. Wonderful coverage, it’s a perfect match for my skin tone and blends like a dream. I love it. I wanted to love the powder foundation for the same reasons, but the coverage is sheer. Didn’t cover my hyperpigmentation much at all, but it made my t-zone look matte and picture perfect until well in the afternoon. So if your skin’s more or less clear, the powder foundation could serve your needs quite nicely.
I have absolutely no complaints about the Queen Collection eye makeup. The eyeliner is par excellence, especially if you like self-sharpening liners with smudgers on the end. If you’re looking for some sophisticated alternatives to plain black or brown liner, I’d definitely recommend the grey khaki shade. It looks subtle but effective on me, and it’d look even more fly and noticeable on bellas of a darker skin shade. Loving the grey khaki. If you’re jumping on the nautical springtime trend, definitely check out the midnight blue. It makes an awesome cat’s eye look.
The pigments in the Queen’s eyeshadows are fine for drugstore brands — the one-kit shadows come in a warm, flattering range of glittery browns that just give a subtle pop to those of us with warm skin tones. In fact, some of them might be too subtle — apply with a wet brush if you really want these colors to stand out. The eyeshadow quads aren’t bad — I am a sucker for blue shadow and yes, I realize that confession could get me banished to the Eighties… but whatevs. I say blue shadow on brown skin for the win. The blue notes quad is pretty, and the colors are all easy and blendable without too much sparkle.
Before I move on, I’d be extremely remiss to not mention CoverGirl’s LashBlast mascara. I love it, and I’m not alone. I’ve been rocking this stuff all last week, and it makes my lashes look long and thick without being clumpy or spiky (it’s all about that funky brush!) and because it’s waterproof, it lasted through an unexpected patch of PMS-related weeping. Good stuff!
Besides foundations and eye makeup, the Queen Collection features moisturizing lip color which is cool if you’re into lipstick. I’d moved away from lipstick for a long time, but this is slick enough to make me happy, and lasted longer than the glosses I’ve been using. The lip gloss is poppin’, it isn’t as sheer as some other drugstore glosses, and it lasted quite well on me. My lips tend to get very dry and crackly during the day, and this product didn’t accentuate that as much as my lip stains sometimes do.
The Queen Collection also has a three-in-one nail color and a glittery top coat (sold seperately so I haven’t yet tried it). I am ALL about that Purplexed color, and as I move into summer fun, I’m planning to try the rhythmic blue shade. I am so over pale pink nails right now. I was recently inspired by a funky mohawked chick I saw at Starbucks, rocking neon green nails. Bright colors make me smile, so I’m feeling funkier shades these days. Those are the funkiest two in the Queen Collection, and there are lots more traditional manicure shades you can choose from there.
So that’s my general overview on the Queen Collection. If I had to give these products grades, the eyeliner, natural hue foundation, mascara, and nail color all get A’s. They won’t make you regret spending your hard earned cash. The lip products get a B +, because I’ve tried better. And the other foundation items and eyeshadows get a B. And the Queen Foundation website’s “Find in Stores” link gets a D.
I tried to figure out where bellas could find these items — I’ve had more than a few readers complain that they just can’t find this stuff on their shelves. Well when you click “find it in stores” on any Queen Collection item, it opens a dumb pop-up that says something like, “look for the silver lipstick tube in stores!” GEE THANKS. I know what the packaging looks like, just tell me what store I can find it in! CVS, Walgreens, Target, Walmart… which store? So if you’re having a hard time finding this stuff, keep looking among the Cover Girl store displays, or check out Drugstore.com.
Aside from that D, that isn’t a bad report card overall, right? You can make yourself look quite glam with the Queen Collection. And in fact… here’s your chance!!
The peeps at Cover Girl have put together a special Queen Collection giftbag for two lucky bellas. Each bag will contain the following
— 1 CoverGirl LashBlast Mascara
1 CoverGirl Queen Collection Natural Hue Foundation (must provide shade preference)
2 CoverGirl Queen Collection 1-Kit Eye Shadows
2 CoverGirl Queen Collection Lip Glosses
2 CoverGirl Queen Collection 3-in-1 Step Nail Colors
1 CoverGirl Queen Collection Vibrant Hue Shine Lipstick
1 CoverGirl Queen Collection Vibrant Hue Color Lipstick.
That’s a whole new range of looks right there. What do you need to do to be down? Leave me a comment that begins with the phrase, “Crown me!” and let me know what your preferred Natural Hue foundation shade is. I’ll close these comments by Friday and choose a winner over the weekend.
By the way, the Every Woman is a Queen contest is open till January 31! So enter now if you want to be featured in Queen Collection ads.
Oh, and did I mention that The Fabbies website is working? If you’d take a moment of your afternoon to vote for me, that would make my day!
** edited Friday at 9:30 a.m. — contest is officially closed. A winner will be chosen by Monday. Thanks for entering, bellas!