Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Enjoy responsibly

"Nailtini, the only line of nail lacquer developed to maximize the creativity of the user by 'cocktailing' different shades. With its peerless performance, hip sensibility and clever, tongue-in-cheek attitude, Nailtini was an instant hit".

I am a little bit obsessed with a new Nail Lacquer I've discovered... Nailtini Nail Lacquer 311 Millionaire from Tini' Beauty Lounge Speakeasy Lacquer Collection.  This high quality glitter infusion is PACKED with rose gold micro glitter and teal and gold "tinsels" (bar glitter).  This lacquer is unlike any glitter polish I have ever seen before, TRES unique and SO eye catching... I find myself staring at my nails all the time.  I feel like it's a wonderful way to bring some luxe into the everyday or to amp up your look for a holiday party.

For my nails, I did a base coat of Essie's "Little Brown Dress" and then added 2 coats of "Millionaire".
This glitter lacquer is so versatile, you can layer it on your favorite color or a generous 3 coats will give you enough coverage for it to stand on it's own.  I did not run in to any problem with clumping or glitter distribution, and each brush stroke allows for a good variety of glitter-types.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A little bit of luxury for your lips

I am crazy for FRESH Sugar Lip Treatments... they are just awesome.  The texture is like buddah! so superb and applies like a dream.  I love how nourishing they are; hey feel so wonderful on the lips and the smell is heavenly... a smooth blend of mellow lemon-y goodness with just the slightest hint of rose.  Your lips will immediately feel soft and supple. 

FRESH Sugar Lip Treatments' formula blends reparative oils (meadowfoam seed, black currant seed, advocado and jojoba) and waxes with real sugar (which is a natural humectant to seal in moisture) along with antioxidate rich grapeseed polyphenols and vitamins A, C and E...All sorts of hydrating goodness with the added benefit of SPF 15. 

You can pick this up in a few colors - the Rose is my favorite, it's a sheer rosey hue that supplies your lips with a hydrating splash of subtle color, or a buildable shade for more impact.  The applicator is beautiful and the cap screws on so there's no worry about purse mishaps.  The only downside is the price tag - a whopping 22 bucks!  But it's totally worth it for a little bit of lip-luxury and you get a ton of product.  Sephora offers Fresh gift sets including this gem, which makes the hit a little easier to stomach.

Purse Perfects

Nobody wants a purse that weights 10 pounds - that being said, it can be a bit of a challenge whittling down what you carry to lighten that load.  I've comprised a list of some of the tried-and-true products I like to always have on hand.

Hello Kitty Compact: Well, obviously yours doesn't NEED to be Hello Kitty but every purse needs a compact, so why not have a cute one?  This adorable Hello Kitty Compact from Sephora contains 2 mirrors: 1x (regular magnification) and a 3x magnification for close ups.
Smith's Rosebud Salve: I cannot sing the praises of this product enough!  Moisturizes chapped lips, conditions dry spots, calms irritated skin, and soothes minor burns.  Not to mention it smells just Divine.  The vintage-y tin is not only lovely, it stays closed and keeps your purse, or makeup bag, mess free.  Talk about a master multi-tasker!
Lumene Sensitive Touch Make up Removing Towelettes: These towelettes work wonders in a pinch.  I don't usually use these day to day but you never know when you may need them so I always have them on hand... these wipes are super gentle and do a fairly good job of removing makeup.  Leaves skin clean and refreshed and non-greasy. 
Mission Skin Care Chapstick in Peppermint:  I always wear chappy under my lipstick and this chapstick is a perfect base as it isn't heavy or greasy.  It is Paraben free and keeps lips super moisturized with the added benefit of SPF 15.  The light mint smell is refreshing.


Cake Beauty Milk Made Hand Cream:  Dry hands can be uncomfortable.  Milk Made is one of my all-time favorite skin-care lines.  This hand cream is so moisturizing and soaks in quick - plus the smell is heavenly: warm vanilla with just a hint of raspberry.  You're totally spoiling your hands.

L'Oreal Elnett Hairspray:  L'Oreal Elnett is my favorite hairspray, hands down.  Non-sticky and will not leave you with helmet head.  I love to keep a travel size of this killer product in my bag for on the go touch ups.

theBalm the balm girls lipstick mai billsbepaid & Clinique "Almost Lipstick" lip color Flirty Honey: I like to keep wearably neutral shades in my bag at all times and these are just perfect for day-to-day use.  Mai billsbepaid is a totally flattering nude that gives you that "my lips only better" look.  Flirty honey is a totally moisturizing true sheer pink with a dewy finish.


Clinique High Impact Mascara: I always keep a travel sized high end mascara in my purse - you can usually find them in the bins by the register at Sephora.  This Clinique Mascara is great for touch ups.  Minimal clumping and high-impact lashes.

Covergirl Outlast Lip Liner: A liner close to your lip color is an under-rated product in your makeup arsenal.  Mastering the art of lining your lips *just right* can make your lips look plumper and your makeup look finished. 

True Religion Hippie Chic Perfume: I've been really feeling this fragrance.  This simple perfume is a light floral; slightly sweet without being over the top.  I like to keep a perfume or two in my purse in case I forget or I need a quick refresher.

True Match Pressed Powder Compact:  I've been using this pressed powder for years and have yet to find one I like better.  The packaging is durable and travels well and I've never had the cake shatter (and my bags take some punishment!)  Great for on-the-go touch ups as multiple applications don't leave you with cake face... you know what I'm talking about.

Blistex Moisture Melt: I keep this in my bag in case I need a heavier moisturizer for my lips (hello cold season, UGH).  Leaves lips SO soft and it wears forever.  Can be layered on top of drying lipcolor for renewed wear.

Secret Clinical Deo Trial Size:  A tried and true deo I depend on!  This deo has some serious strength and will keep you dry and smelling sweet no matter what!  Great for days when you -whoops!- forget, or need a little extra freshening up.

boscia blotting linens: These 100% natural linen, preservative-free facial blotting papers will keep you looking shine-free and lovely all day long without removing your makeup. They are fairly sizable so one sheet is all you need for mattifying.  Their compact holder slips easily into your purse and STAYS CLOSED!  The way it dispenses makes it super easy to just grab one for de-shine-ification.

Bliss Daily Detox

I'm really loving the Bliss Daily Detoxifying Facial Toner I've been using lately.  Finding a good toner for sensitive, easily irriated skin can be a bit like locating the holy grail so I was just pleased as punch when I picked this up on a whim and it was a total success!  So many toners do nothing more than dry out skin leaving it red and irriated (def NOT cute) but this one is so hydrating and makes my skin look (and feels) amazing.

Bliss Daily Detoxifying Facial Toner

This gentle toner smoothes moisturizes and provides potent antioxidant protection against smoke, smog and other environmental toxins (which are known to wreak wrinkle related havoc on your skin). Don't think of this product as merely another "step"- Daily Detoxifying Facial Toner balances skin's pH level to allow for maximum moisturization. so while it may be one small step for you, it's a giant "leap" for your skin.

  • Calming rose water and free-radical-fighting malachite.
  • Sodium hyaluronate to bind moisture to skin.
  • Alcohol-free formula gently tightens pores.
  • Preps skin to accept moisturizer better.
  • Sublime citrus scent.
  • For all skin types.
Truth be told, this toner is definitely a little bit unusual in composition: instead of being watery consistency, it is almost slightly slimy and leaves a light residue behind.  Much like a moisturizer this residue soaks in after a minute or so and leaves skin soft and smooth.  There is no stinging or drying like most alcohol-based toners and the light citrus smell is very refreshing.

The uber hydrating quality of this Bliss toner makes it a wonderful addition to your routine this time of year as the windy days and drop in temperatures can leave your skin feeling especially parched.

As much as I like it, I'm pretty sure it is not for everyone.  People with oily skin should steer clear of this toner as the "extra moisturizing" quality I enjoy so much may be a bit much for you.  Also, if you're the type who enjoys a harsher toner, this really isn't for you.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

One Sexy Motherpucker!

I confess... I picked Soap & Glory Sexy Motherpucker up originally in Target in 2005 purely for the name, having never heard of Soap & Glory.  It was an instant love affair, so as you can imagine I was simply devastated when Target's contract with Soap & Glory ran out and they stopped carrying it.  Thank the stars you can find this brand at Sephora now!  Years after the fact I recently ordered a tube and I have no regrets.  Ahhhhhh, reconciled love!

What it is formulated to do:A single slick of Sexy Mother Pucker™ can fool your lips into looking and feeling fuller. It features SUPERFILL™ microspheres that explode in volume up to 10X when they absorb moisture, and circulation-enhancing LIPSWELL™ natural plant oil infusion to increase blood flow and make lips look almost instantly lusher.

($15.00 at Sephora)

Sexy Motherpucker truly is quite different compared to other glosses on the market and is prob one of the best nude glosses I have ever used.  Plus, isn't the packaging just devine?  Adorable.  I picked up 'baby doll' which is a sheer pink with just a touch of color.  I feel like the resulting color is a natural flushed lip look.  It does have the slightest raspberry chocolate fragrance, but it isn't overpowering and doesn't seem to linger terribly long.  The formula is thick without being too ooey-gooey or excessively sticky (I do allow some "sticky" in my gloss gaging, it is a gloss after all) so it's just about the right consistency for long-wearability.
I am wearing Essie Good Morning Hope on my nails.

And speaking of wearability, the staying power of this gloss is crazy awesome.  The 'plumping' effect can be a tad disarming if you aren't expecting it, so be warned!  It's not really an outwardly unpleasant experience but it certainly gives the feeling that you just slept on your face for a few hours and have a wicked case of pins and needles... only on your lips.  A curious sensation but frankly, I don't mind it.  I do take all plumping claims with a grain of salt, but I def get a certain 'bee-stung' lips look (illusion or not) with this gloss and my kisser def looks hella better than the lips I was born with.  After it's gone, lips are so soft and conditioned.

Overall: I highly recommend Soap & Glory Sexy Motherpucker!  It's a serious plumper and conditioner and if you're looking for sexy bee-stung lips with a natural flush and long wearability this is a pick that is totally worth every penny.  Oh, and a $1 from every sale goes to Stomp Out Bullying.  I love looking cute for a good cause.  :)

Essie Winter 2012 Leading Lady

They're at it again!  Essie's Winter 2012 line Leading Lady has hit stores and once again has created a totally unique and unexpected fabulous collection that has this polish addict clamoring to complete the whole collection.  Featuring 6 very different shades with varying finishes and textures there is sure to be at least one (or all, I won't judge) that peaks your interest.  ;)

From left to right:
Beyond Cozy:  This is one killer polish.  An antique-y, retro clear-based polish that is full of finely grained glitter that reminds me of champagne.  This is not your standard-issue glitter encrusted top coat... this polish stands entirely on its own creating a totally unique and chic look. 

Where's My Chauffer?:  A must.  This polish is a beautiful Tiffany-esque blue shade, or "robin's egg", if you will.  It's bright, but in a muted way (does that even make sense) and is just frosty enough to take turquoise from a summer shade right in to winter.

Butler Please:  If you dig blue polishes, I feel like this is one of those blues you need in your life.  I can't even get over how INSANELY pigmented and eye catching this vivid, ultra marine blue shade is.  I am SO madly in love with this color, the picture does it no justice, really.

Snap Happy:  How do I describe this color?  This polish is kind of coral-y but I find it to be more red-saturated than orange and SUPER vibrant.  I would liken this to a near-neon.

She's Pampered:  What would a holiday collection be without a red?  This is a cool scarlet shade that is oh-so-very festive. 

Leading Lady:  This was my first pick up from the collection, I was totally enamored by it... very Dorothy's ruby slippers.  Kind of a berry-toned gel with sparkle.  Like the Beyond Cozy this isn't a glitter top coat, this is a polish that stands on it's own.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

A pretty fall look that is amazingly easy with a few killer products!

Fall is a time to up the ante in your beauty routine, but that doesn't mean your look has to be over the top!  Right now I'm loving rich blushes, healthy lips and muted metallics mixed with relaxed style.

As with any look, start with a good moisturizer and a great base.  I've really been digging Clinique Even Better Moisturizer lately.  Then after it's sunk in I apply L'Oreal Youth Code BB Cream.  The combo of the Even Better and the BB creates a correcting and even base for your makeup.  If you have an oilier skin, skip the moisturizer and go for a BB or tinted moisturizer.

Then I applied a light coverage foundation, I'm partial too L'Oreal True Match Lumi Foundation.  I personally prefer a lighter coverage this time of year, plus the BB already applied some coverage.  Smooth the liquid foundation ONLY WHERE YOU NEED A LITTLE EXTRA COVERAGE!  I can't stress this enough.  Apply just a touch of your fav concealer to your undereye to brighten the eye area.

Sweep just a dusting of bronzer over your cheek bones, hairline, bridge of your nose and jawline to warm up your complexion.  I LOVE theBalm Bahama Mama Bronzer, easily blendable with a matte finish that makes it easy to carry into Fall.  Apply a berry or jewel toned blush to the apples of your cheeks and blend well.  I used theBalm Cabana Boy Blush.

Set your makeup with a translucent powder, one that is either "invisible" or matches your complexion.  L'Oreal Translucide Powder is a wonderful option.

Now the eyes - you'll need an irridescent shade and a matte smokey shade.  I used Clinique Color Surge EyeShadow's Blackberry Frost and Slate.  I rimmed my eyes (all the way around for a smokey rim) and up into the crease with slate (a matte smoke color) and swept blackberry frost (an irridescent lilac) over my lids and below the bottom lash line.  The key to this look is to BLEND.  We're looking for a more toned down version of Audrey Hepburn circa 1966 from How to Steal a Million .

Now here's the trick with the liner:  Line the top lash line with a soft black liner and continue the bottom lash line with a deep chocolate liner... this gives the eyes a defined look without being too heavy.  I used Maybelline Define-a-Line Liners.  If you'd like, you can layer on a brown liquid liner, I love Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner+Serum.  This will make your liner last, smudge free and add some addition dimension.  Finish your eyes with a black mascara, I used theBalm Cheater Mascara.

Stay neutral for the lips.  I used just a swipe of chapstick and applied theBalm the Balm Girls Lipstick Mai Billsbepaid.  A velvety nude shade is enough to pull this look together without looking overdone.

I went with a lilac metallic nail, Essie Nothing Else Metals, that compliments the shadow without being too "matchy-matchy".  Essie has 5 killer metallic shades that I urge you to check out, absolutely perfect for fall.

And voila! You're done. Quick and easy with just a touch of glamour that you can pull off in the day. I like to pair this with an easy heathered gray hoodie or sweater and some jeans. 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Another rad blush shade from theBalm

I love theBalm, in fact I can't get enough of theBalm, and that obsession continues with theBalm Cabana Boy Blush.  Like all theBalm's blushes, this does double duty as a shadow.  This gorgeous deep dusty rose blush is more luminous than shimmery and has a soft and silky texture that is totally blendable.  There's something about this shade that is just so totally unique and grown up.  Instant chic-ness!  Cabana Boy has a rich, pigmented formula with good color pay off so go easy on the application, a little bit goes a long way!  In other words... use a light hand, you can always build up color is needed.

Get the look:
*  I started with Clinique Even Better Skin Tone Corrector Moisturizer, but you can start with your fav lotion.
*  Using a sponge, I blended L'Oreal True Match Foundation and applied CoverGirl Simply Ageless Concealer to my under eyes.
*  I then dusted theBalm Bahama Mama Bronzer on my face where the sun naturally hits and brushed Cabana Boy on the apples of my cheeks with a kabuki blush. 
*  I set my makeup with L'Oreal Translucide Powder. 
*  I used Clinique Colorsurge eye shadow in Toasted Almond on my lids and lined them with CoverGirl Exact Eyelights Liner Majestic Jade.  I completed my eyes with a coat of CoverGirl Exact Eyelights Mascara Black Gold.
*  I finished my look with Clinique Almost Lipstick Flirty Honey.

Pocketbook staple has vintage feel and heavenly formula

Smith's Rosebud Salve has been a staple in my pocketbook for a long time, but was inspired by a fresh tin I just picked up to give it a long overdue review.  This product is amazing - one of my true must-haves.  It is a multi-purpose lip balm that soothes dry lips, calms and heals irritated skin, moisturizes dry skin and can even soothe minor burns.  The silky smooth formula of this salve provides great moisture without being sticky, heavy or waxy and leaves lips so super soft and supple.  It works great as a primer for lipstick, but the slight hint of color means it can be worn alone for a nice and natural flush.  I love the vintage-y feel of this product too - it comes in a great tin that is just so chic and cute and I really enjoy the subtle hint of rose scent.  If rose isn't for you, I do believe they have at least a peppermint option, although I just never stray from the rose.  True love.  <3

A "sensational" palette for a fresh, natural look

Looking for a fresh, natural look for lazy days?  The Stila Sensational in Sydney Travel Palette is a perfect all-in-one option that retails for $16.  This is a great, neutral palette that will pull your look together but still look simple, easy and fresh faced.  It opens up like a mini notebook revealing 5 eye shadows, a convertible color for cheeks and lips, a mirror, and a mini-tutorial for applying the shadows.

The eye shadows are a complimentary assortment of neutral/champagne/browns with an (obviously) Australian theme known as: Bondi Beach, Aussie, Koala, Opera House, Habour Bridge.  They have decent color payoff and a dry formula that goes on nicely and aren't too crumbly.

I'm really loving the Sugarbrush Convertible Color for cheeks and lips.  This is a well-pigmented two-fer that blends easily for a healthy pop of color on cheeks or applies smoothly too lips for a natural wash of rosey color.  The only downside is that I don't think you can pick this up in a full size!  :(

Overall, this palette is great for day-to-day use, but def not for a more adventurous look. 

For this quick and easy look (10 minutes max!), I started by applying L'Oreal Youth Code BB Cream as a base and applied L'Oreal Lumi True Match Foundation where I needed a little extra coverage.  I brushed on just a touch of theBalm Bahama Mama Bronzer to warm my complexion and applied the Sugarbrush Convertable Color to the apples of my cheeks and my lips.  Then, I followed the mini tutorial in the Sensational in Sydney palette for my eyes, lined them with Stila Smudge Stick Liner, and swiped on some Cheater Mascara from theBalm.  To finish off my look I applied Clinique Superbalm Lip Treatment over the Sugarbrush for a healthy, slightly glossy, rosey pout.

Paris Amour

Oh Bath & Body Works, you've got me again!  I must admit that I was totally avoidant of Bath & Body Works for many years until I was lured in by their Malibu Heat display last Spring, a collection I became absolutely enamored with.  After receiving a 20% off coupon in my email, I decided to give B&BW a gander the other day while on a shopping trip, and discovered a new scent-ual love... Paris Amour.

Paris Amour is a light, fruity/floral combination of French tulips, apple blossoms and pink sparkling champagne... heaven in a bottle!  This fairly unique fragrance is just perfect for the summer-to-fall transition; light, feminine, and fresh.  The scent itself is just strong enough that you smell positively yummy for a good portion of the day, without being super heavy and overwhelming.  This is def not one of those headache-inducing scents!

But enough about the smell...this lotion goes on like a dream!  Non-greasy and packed with nourishing ingredients like shea butter, jojoba oil and vitamin E.  This light lotion absorbs quickly and gives a good days worth of moisture.  It leaves my skin silky smooth and comfortably moisturized.

It retails for about $11, standard B&BW pricing, but it is worth every penny. I picked it up on a buy 2 get 1 free deal and grabbed 2 bottles of lotion (one for home and one for my gym bag) and grabbed the collections bubble bath.  I haven't tried it yet, but I feel like I'm in for an indulgent bath time.*

*update: After using the bubblebath I have to admit it is nothing to write home about.  I'd def save your money.  ;)

Kiss flakey, chapped lips bu-bye!

Scrubs and loofahs are common items to buff you body and face, but what about your lips?  Dry, flakey lips are not only unattractive, the can be terribly uncomfortable.  Sugar lip scrubs are a a great tool to keep your kisser smooth by exfoliating and moisturizing.

Since I was pretty unhappy with the Skinny Girl Lip Scrub (too heavy! too greasy!) I picked up a while back, I've been on the lookout for a good scrub - I know, I know, you can make your own - but who has the time?  I must say, I'm pretty pleased with Victoria's Secret Pro Smooth FX Lip Scrub & Balm.  It has kind of a high price tag (16 dolla!) but it's a sizeable about of product, has wonderful packaging, and it's a 2-fer.

To ensure a perfect pout, our pros always prep lips with this sugar scrub and moisture- rich balm before applying color. Gently massage the scrub onto lips for 30 seconds, then tissue off. Finish with a light layer of balm. Lips are left feeling soft, supple and ready for camera-worthy color.

This scrub/balm combo is all you need to maintain perfectly smooth and soft lips.  The jar itself is quite sturdy (good packaging can be hard to come by!) and has a compact design that makes it easy to travel with and totally practical.  This jar has two different products.  The top part contains a flip top with a moisturizing, lightly minty balm, just unscrew it to reveal the scrub.  The scrub texture is just perfect, not too gritty, no too soft.  It smells slightly sweet, but it is not overpowering and quite pleasant.  This combo really is an ah-mazing prep for lip color or for taking the day's lip color off.  To be quite frank, your lips will be so smooth and supple you may want to keep your kisser au naturale.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Falling for Fall Trends

Fall is here and that means it's time to update your routine!  Warm temps and sunshine usually make way for low-key beauty, but Autumn is time for a pulled together chic look.  5 Easy ways to update your look:  1) Foundation and moisturizer!  Complexion can dull in the Fall as temps drop and we make our way inside.  Find a good moisturizer that restores your skin.  Reach for a medium foundation.  If you used a foundation in the summer, get re-matched to your fall skin to avoid a masky face. 2) Trade your bronzer in for a bright blush.  3) Reach for some eyeshadow; this fall is all about smokey colors and earth tones, plums, golds, bronzes and greens... experiment with them all! 4) Define those brows!  A good defined eyebrow not only finishes a look but can also enhance your features.  5) Find a deep lippy shade you love... wines and chocolate tones are classics for Fall and can be a great starting point.  Find a shade that best compliments your skin tone.
Some of my picks for Fall

Cake Beauty Milk Made Velveteen Hand Cream: Say bu-bye to dry mitts!  *Hands down* the best hand lotion I have ever used, I always keep it in my purse.  It smells heavenly... like warm vanilla with just a hint of raspberry... but unlike most sweet-smelling products, doesn't seem to irritate sensitive skin.  The formula is moisturizing and non-sticky and absorbs in a flash.  Totally worth the price tag - you need this in your life.
Essie Nail Polish - This fall is all about vampy, rich colors, tough yet feminine.  Deep reds and creamy mauves dictate this season.  The Recessionista collection is perfect for Autumn, but here are a couple colors to consider: Recessionista (an earthy deep plum), Yogaga (a cool sandy beige), and my recent obsession Don't Sweater It (an inviting creamy mauve, as cozy as it's namesake).  Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I threw I am Strong (an "optimistic" pink) into the mix.
Blistex Moisture Melt Lip Protectant: Pay some lip service to this amazing lip treatment!  This hydrating lip product makes your lips SO soft - like ridic - and is super long lasting.  The scent and taste is light and feels very high quality.  Blends nicely with leftover lip color that has stained your lips or as topcoat for actual lip stain for a healthy, fresh look.
Maybelline Color Tattoo Eye Shadow Pomegranate Punk & Gold Shimmer: These shadows by Maybelline are absolutely fab - ultra pigmented with long-wearability like woah.  Just slightly shimmery enough to brighten the eyes and it applies like a dream.
Covergirl and Olay Simply Ageless Sculpting Blush Plush Peach: This blush has been my go-to for years - it totally rocks my socks.  This cream blush is pigmented enough to give you a healthy glow but isn't too overwhelming.  Leaves your skin smooth and moisturized and lasts all day - seal it with a translucent powder for an all day glow.
John Frieda Frizz-Ease Smooth Start Repairing Shampoo & Conditioner: Summer can leave strands parched and dry... give them the TLC you need with this shampoo and conditioner combo that feels amazingly high end with an absolutely affordable price tag.  Hair feels softer, healthier and def less frizzy.  The formula is gentle on hair and makes it feel crazy clean, the great smell is an added bonus.
Organix Healing Cherry Blossom Rice Milk Cashmere Body Wash: I love this body wash.  The smell is amazing and totally feminine, not to mention the formula is gentle and soothing and highly moisturizing with no oily residue.
L'Oreal Youth Code BB Cream:  This cream is awesome.  The perfect way to add some glow into a dulled complexion.  A bit more of a tinted moisturizer than a BB but this lightweight, super hydrating moisturizer is SO creamy and goes on like a dream.  The silky texture makes it totally blendable and so easy to apply.  It offers light coverage and completely smooths out skins texture to make it a great base for a foundation (even though it could absolutely be worn alone).  The result is a natural and dewey finish.
Limited Edition Moist Hemp Berries and Cream Lotion: The moist hemp products are all a win but this limited edition lotion smells divine and makes your skin crazy smooth.  It moisturizes well, absorbs quickly, and has serious staying power for all-day moisturizing.  You can find this little gem at Sally's Beauty Supply... 5% of each sale goes to Susan G. Komen for the Cure®.
Crest 3D White Mouthwash & Toothpaste: Summertime cocktails can wreak havoc on your pearly whites and this combo can combat even the worst post-Sangria teeth (although it won't do much for the post-Sangria hangovers!) Mouth feels clean and fresh with the added benefit of a brightened smile.  Yellow teeth can off-put even the cutest of fall outfits!
L'Oreal Colour Riche Project Runway Queen Kiss: OBSESSED with this find!  Part of the Project Runway Collection, this semi-opaque berry shade with slight shimmer.  The formula is slightly creamy and glides right on - the shade is very on trend this season's wine/plum colors.  Can be worn for an chic day look or layered for a bolder nighttime look.
Revlon Lip Butter Sugar Plum: I love this for day - all the trend with none of the "vamp" just enough color to look finished.  The formula is moisturizing enough to comfortably wear alone, or layered on top of your favorite lip balm.  What I like about this is it can really be touched up on the go without a mirror.
Covergirl Exact Eyelights Eye Brightening Eyeliner Majestic Jade: This is *supposed* to be for hazel eyes, but I love it for my brown eyes.  I'm not too sure how this "brightens eyes" but it is a great a liner that is a nice departure from the usual black or brown.  This liner glides on smooth and lasts all day.

Stila Eyeliner Purple Tang: I love this liner - The deep plum is seriously on trend and this liner defines eyes without being as "severe" as black.  Plus, this high quality liner stays put and lasts all day.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

A Loose Powder that Exceeds Expectations

L'Oreal Paris Translucide Naturally Luminous Loose Powder

"Achieve a healthy glow and set your makeup for the day.  Translucide Naturally Luminous Loose Powder is never dull, flat, or cakey.  Powder formula is enriched with the antioxidant power of Vitamin C for extra benefits to your skin."

This product is a total win.  This is a perfect setting powder that doesn't dull your foundation one bit.  This powder is finely milled and applies smoothly and evenly.  As promised, it does not cake and leaves your skin positively glowy and perfect.   I have very sensitive skin, and this does not irritate my skin at all, no itchiness and has yet to cause any blocked pores.  The powder feels so high end and you really feel as though you are using a quality product.  The price point is a bit high - about $13- but there's a TON of product and a little bit really goes a long way.  I love how it feels so light and lasts all day.  I was excited to give this a try, and I must say this absolutely exceeded my expectations.  Best ever.

Conclusion: If you are looking for a product to enhance your look, brighten your complexion, and leave you with an airbrushed-but-not-overly-done product, this one is for you!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Plum pouts & Chocolate Cherry lips: The Burgundy Bandwagon

Dramatic plum pouts and chocolate cherry lips were all over the runway for Fall 2012 and have me ready for crisp air and crunchy leaves.  In the past I've gravitated to more of a scarlet red lip (ala Gwen Stefani) but I think this fall I'm gunna hop on the burgundy bandwagon.

Fall 2012: Some looks from Gucci Westman...To make this work without looking to vampy [unless that's the look you're going for, than by all means, to each is own] go minimal on the rest of the face.

The look for less:

Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain Smitten
The design of this chubby crayon reminds me of Clinique's Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Color Balm, but I find it to be a little heavier with a deeper color payoff.  I like this more than a stain as it gives the perfect flush of color with smooth lips.  The color lasts forever, even after the "balm" wears off.

Revlon Colorburst Lip Gloss Bordeux
This non-sticky light weight gloss is extremely pigmented with decent staying power (it is a gloss after all).  It is a semi opaque but totally buildable, vivid, deep wine color with a mirror-like shine.  It looks a touch intimidating in the tube but it is so beautiful on.  Probably my fav of the 3.

L'Oreal Colour Caresse Luminous Lipstick Cherry Tulle
I'm a big fan of this entire line, the formula is super hydrating and light and the color payoff is good, but totally buildable for a more dramatic look.  I think this is a wonderful option for people who'd like to try the trend but don't want to jump in feet first. 

A few more options: Covergirl Lip Perfection Shade Burn and Covergirl Wetslicks Fruit Spritzers Shade 550 Plum Splash.  Details and pictures to come.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Maybelline, make smart decisions.

Oh Maybelline... WHAT were you thinking???

Maybelline Eye Studio Master Shape Brow Pencil (Blonde)
Master the shapely brow. So natural. So easy. So now! Maybelline's Master Shape Brow Pencil's unique, natural wax formula with subtle color pigments creates hair-like fine lines for the most natural definition.

Ok.  So here's the deal.  This WOULD be a fantastic product if it weren't for having the absolute worst packaging ever.  I have blonde, very light eyebrows that need a little assistance in the definition department.  I had been using Revlon's Brow Fantasy Defining Brow Pencil but I decided to try something different.  Initially, I thought this product was great.  The 1/6 inch of pigmented wax you get is wonderful... the formula lasts all day and does a bang-up job of filling in spars brows and playing up shape without looking too harsh or phony.  The wand is an added bonus as it really does a great job feathering the lines and combing brows into place.  I was really enjoying working with this product, until I wore down the tip...

You would think this would be a twist up, or something, what with the plastic casing.  I examined the whole stick looking for a way to  advance this sucker... no dice.  I thought I was a total dope until I googled the darn thing for a solution only to discover that you need to sharpen it. through the plastic.  What?  I've tried and I've tried but none of my sharpeners does the trick.  Plain.  Silliness.  It doesn't even clarify on the packaging... I really shouldn't have to research how to work my eyebrow pencil.  I am baffled as to who thought this was a good idea.

The bottom line:  Thank god for 100% money back guarantees: I am returning the pencil, even though I liked the color and texture, and trying for a different brand.  And not in a million years would not recommend this product until they fix this absolute STRUCTURE FAIL. So dumb.  Save your $8.

"Falling" for Color

She asks... and she doth receive!  After doing a little detective work (very minimal), I have discovered that Essie DOES, in fact, have a more satisfying Fall-y collection coming out: Stylenomics

THAT'S what I'm TALKING about!  ------->
SO excited for this collection and it's full-force color!
The shades: Miss Fancy Pants ("greige"), Recessionista (magenta), Stylenomics (opulent green), Head Mistress (bold red), Don't Sweater It (cozy mauve), and Skirting the Issue (burgundy).

Seems to have a September release, but that won't stop me from a weekly trip to Walgreens in hopes of an early arrival!  (It happens, seems Walgreens is usually ahead of the curve.)  I want them all, and they will be mine (oh yes, they will be mine), but Stylenomics and Head Mistress are absolutely calling my name.

Hellllllloooo, Sweater Weather.

Namaste, homies.

As a yogi, and an Essie enthusiast, I'd be hard pressed to not grab their latest collection: the "Fall 2012" Yogaga Collection.  This is a fairly muted collection of "modern neutrals" that I've found to lean more towards a kind of a gray-based pastel spectrum.  There are 6 colors in total for this collection, but I'll be damned if I'm yet to find the illusive 6-shade display... most drugstores seem to have received only the 4, such is life (there's always Ebay!).  I've gotten my hands on the namesake Yogaga (a creamy taupe), Marathin (dusty, earthy rose), Pilates Hottie (subdued gray-lilac) and Boxer Shorts (blue-based purple).  The remaining 2 are Spinning Again (neutral brick) and Gym Dandy (neutral brown).

Of the 4 I have, I'm really digging Boxer Shorts the best, although I don't really feel it's a fall-kind of color.  Pilates Hottie is a nice neutral shade if you're going for the whole, your-nails-only-better vibe, with a barely noticeable lilac.  I'll admit, I'm pretty indifferent to the collections namesake, Yogaga... I could really take it or leave it.  Marathin is pretty, but again, not really anything to write home about.  ...Is that, disappointment I am feeling?  I guess I was just hoping for more "oomph!" from the Fall Collection, maybe something more sultry?  A collection of  deeper, earthy shades, perhaps?  I dunno.  I guess I was hoping to move away from the pastels in the upcoming fall months.  I kind of feel like their Modern Metallics  had more of a Fall Feel than this Yogaga.  Who knows though, Essie seems to always have new collections coming out.

Gym Dandy, Yogaga, Pilates Hottie, Marathin, Spinning Again, Boxer Shorts

Essie's Modern Metallics Collection:

L'Oreal lovefest

Whew!  This review is really overdue!

I'm really behind the ball here, but here's a few L'Oreal Gems that I am literally obsessed about.

L'Oreal Youth Code BB Cream (Shade Light)
Okay.  So it's not a legit BB.  But I'm over it because! ...This moisturizer is FAB... I finally jumped on the Drugstore BB Bandwagon because I couldn't stand to be out of the Drugstore BB loop any longer (Curiosity may have killed the cat, but I don't have four legs and a tail, meow, or have an affinity for tuna fish).  I got this for a "wicked baaahgain", as they say up in my neck of the woods, for a slightly less painful $11.99 (it does seem to run about $16-18 depending on where you grab it, but it is ABSOLUTELY worth it and methinks this tube will last forever).

This super hydrating moisturizer is so creamy and lightweight, and goes on like a dream.  Totally blendable and so easy to apply.  A little bit of this product goes a long way.  It offers light coverage, completely smooths out skin's texture and covers up minor imperfections.  It really just brightens up your complexion and makes skin GLOW.  It does have a very light, almost citrus-y smell, but it is not overwhelming and once it dries, not noticeable at all... and this is coming from someone with a super-human smeller.  To boot, my skin looks BETTER makeup free since I've started using it!  I can also attest to the fact that it holds up like a champ.  97 degree temps and 95% humidity and it held up like a champ. 

Really, you could absolutely wear this alone, but you could also use a touch of concealer or foundation and/or a powder.  Ive been pairing it with just a touch of foundation and that brings us to...

L'oreal True Match Lumi Foundation (W-4 Natural Beige)
I'm truly in love with this foundation and paired with the Youth Code BB... I haven't been happier with my makeup in a LONG time.  This light weight foundation is on the thinner side, but it blends really well, goes on silky-smooth, and like the BB, has some serious staying power.  I love how breathable this formula is and it didn't dry my skin out or make it oily.  I've been using it for a while now and it has yet to make me break out, or have a reaction, and that's saying something for my sensitive skin.  This is, without a doubt, the best drugstore foundation I've tried in a very long time.

Pairing the Youth Code BB with the True Match Lumi really makes my skin look flawless and just the slightest bit, dare I say... dewy?  Well, whatever you call it, my skin looks great and very healthy, and who wouldn't want that??

SO now that your skin looks great, how do we finish off the look?  With...

L'Oreal Colour Riche Color Caresse Lipstick
This lipstick really doesn't feel like a lipstick to me.  It's kind of a pseudo-lippy, kinda-gloss hybrid, but not quite in line with the "colored balm" craze that happened not too long ago.  The color payoff on these babies is great.  The formula is totally non-sticky and are super moisturizing (they do contain jojoba butter) and they're Paraben-free... the result is an uber-luxe and high end feeling lipstick.  It applies effortlessly and gives you beautiful sheer color.  I'm pretty much in love with the packaging too... the bullets are well make and have a very chic feel to them.  I have both Blushing Sequin and Velvety Fushia and I fully intend on picking up some new shades (I've got my eye on you Sunset Angora!).

Enough of this L'Oreal Love fest.  But for real... these products ROCK.  My absolute fav stuff to put on my face these days.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

"Bring bling to a whole new level."

I loved Essie's luxeffects that came out last winter and seemed to have become part of their "permanent" collection so I was excited to read that they added a new "color" to the assortment: Essie's Stroke of Brilliance.  It's a periwinkle blue in a clear base, the promo image is just killer, and needs to be in my collection like... uhh... YESTERDAY.  Essie recommends layering it over chinchilly, lapiz of luxury, and over the edge, but really, there's a million different colors to try it with.  I've heard rumors that this is at Walgreens, we shall see.  I'll update as soon as it's on my nails!

*Update* This topcoat is just gorgeous.  Like the others in the LuxeEffect line, it goes on smooth, not clumpy, delivers shine, sparkle, and longwearability... In fact, it's kind of a b*tch to get off.  One coat does the trick, but it layers easily for more glitter, if that sort of thing floats your boat.  It also dries quickly, which is a nice added bonus.  This is a fab addition to the Luxeffect line!