Thursday, January 28, 2010

FOTD-Hello, Ms. Kardashian



Here's what I did with the Kim K look. I toned it down a bit, because I feel like red carpet looks need a little bit of translation to make it workable for day to day wear. Also, I am not nearly as tanned as she is, nor do I feel the need to contour my face quite as much.

Eyes: UDPP, NYX single eye shadow in Eutopia and Mink Brown, NYX Chrome eye shadow in Panic, Revlon Matte Eyeshadow in Aubergine, e.l.f. Cream Liner in Black, Estee Lauder Artist Pencil in SoftSmudge Black.
Brows: NYX brow powder in Taupe and aloe vera gel
Skin: Monistat AntiChafing Gel, NARS concealer in Custard, Revlon PhotoReady in 004 Nude, Sephora Sundisk Bronzer in #1
Lips: Avon Ultra Liner in Nude, Burt's Bees lip balm.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

February is now officially a No-buy month.

I've really been meaning to try to control my spending habits, swear to Bob. I'm not going to lie, since joining MakeUpAlley, my desire for makeup has increased, exponentially.  I mean, you can't crave a product if you don't know about it. But MUA creates this database of products- fabulously detailed reviews all at your fingertips. Not to mention, a continuous stream of advice from real people- the human element you just can't get when you look at ratings. But these people are also great enablers- it's a struggle to keep my habit in check and let me tell you, I'm not winning! Just this morning I stumbled out of bed and logged on to read about a Lorac bundle (which I ended up buying, of course) that seemed like a really good deal. It's the New Year's Neutrals set, and it seemed like a really good idea. Of course, it doesn't help that it's so easy to buy things online, it takes a few clicks and I have myself another package on its way. So, considering my recent larger purchases (I'm over $250 this month) I've declared Feburary a complete no buy month. I'll still do numerous EOTDs and FOTDs, hopefully this will push my creativity and really use up some of those old palettes I've been neglecting.  Plus, instead of spending money on this wicked habit of mine, I think I'll use it for a nice Valentine's Day surprise for the significant other and I- he's worked really hard lately, maybe we can spend some time in our favorite little town- New Hope.
On a side note, I made a haul video about my NYX purchase that arrived today. Check it out here.
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EOTD-Soft smudge brown with a hint of lemon




I got this look from playing around with my new NYX products. Sorry about the fallout on the lashes, I was in a hurry! The brown is very basic blending of the crease, but the lemony yellow gives it a bit of interest, as well as dimension to the eyes.
-NYX Eyeliner pencil in Canary
-NYX single Eye Shadows in Eutopia, Mink Brown and Salmon
-L'oreal Double Extend Mascara Waterproof
-NYX Taupe/Ash Brow powder
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FOTD-Twiggy inspired look

I'm kind of on a vintage kick, let's see how long it lasts.


I am neither pale nor do I have flawless skin like Twiggy, but I decided to go for hugely exaggerated  mod falsies today. Instead of purely nude lips, I added an element of baby pink.
Face: Hard Candy blush in Pin Up, NARS Custard concealer, Revlon PhotoReady 004 Nude
Lips: NYX lip pencil in Rose, Beauty Rush clear lipgloss, touch of concealer
Eyes: MAC Blanktype, Fluidline Blacktrack. Diorshow Mascara
Lashes: Top, e.l.f. Hollywood Lashes, Lower, NYX Individual lower lashes




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The Search for Cheap Plum Eyeliner

You know how Greek heros like Hercules had quests? Well my quest is to find the perfect smokey purple eyeliner under $5.  Is it that unreasonable to hope that there is a beautiful plum out there, slightly shimmery but not too much smokey grey in it? Is it also too much to ask that this eyeliner stays on all day, doesn't smudge and happens to be waterproof?
I bought 3 different liners, and tested them out.
The first one is from e.l.f., I bought for a dollar. Now usually when I review a product, I leave a bit of room for the possibility that I might be wrong about a product and let the reader decide if it's worth the investments. This isn't one of them. This product is the single worst cosmetic purchase I have ever made. It's hard to draw a line with it- sure, it performs well when you draw on your hand, but when you actually use it on the eyelid, it tugs the skin quite a bit. At the same time, it's greasy feeling and fades off right away. Completely rubbish for an eyeliner. I tried to salvage it by using it all over my eye lid as a dark base. What a mistake! The next morning, I woke up with whiteheads on my eyelid. Whiteheads! Eyelid!
The next one, which is a step up (barely) is the Wet'n'Wild MegaChrome Eyeliner in Antique Amethyst. This one was about $2 dollars when I did a BOGO free with WnW products at Walgreens. It still was rather dull but this one was definitely creamier and didn't make my eyes break out.
My favorite one so far is the Ulta brand Automatic Eye Liner in the color Raisin. It's got great color yet I think the most appealing part is the waterproof qualities- once you apply this liner, it stays. No little purple rainbows even if your eyelids are greasy. The best part? I bought this at Ulta for a dollar during one of their sales (normally $7). So it is indeed to find a spectacularly pigmented eye liner in an interesting color that is still cheap. I highly recommend waiting to purchase colored eyeliners when there's a sale of some sort going on (no matter the brand- anything from high end cosmetics to drugstore makeup), also keep in mind the return policies- I like buying from places that let you return used makeup for any reason at all (it's why I love CVS!).
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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

FOTD- Bettie Page Inspired


What up, 50s pinup. 
Bettie Page is an idol of mine. She was so unbelievably sexy- but she had this classy element to her that modern day counterparts can't touch. Some of her pictures are rather raunchy, yet she looks impeccable. 
So here's my modern day salute to her. I can't quite get the bangs, mine are much too long to get that meticulously perfect edge.
Lips: NYX Eros, Sonia Kashuk Lip Liner in China Red
Eyes: Lancome Honeymoon and MAC's Cork (tiny bit in the crease), L'oreal Double Extend Waterproof and Diorshow Mascara
Face: NARS concealer in Custard, Revlon PhotoReady in 004 Nude




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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

High Beam Dupe

So a couple of weeks ago, I posted this video about a very good BeneFit High Beam dupe. Here's the video, the answer is below!

The High Beam is on the right side of the screen, the Boots N*7 High Lights is on the other hand.
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Monday, January 18, 2010

A Tale of Two Hauls

Here's a couple haul videos that I've done recently.
Enjoy. <3



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Thursday, January 14, 2010

My Makeup Philosophy

Ok, I took a long hard look at my makeup philosophies and came up with my makeup 'values'. This really helps me cut down on spending. It forces me to really evaluate how much I want a new product- will I really use it? Or am I attracted to the packaging, its too good to be true marketing?  I won't lie, I do get excited every time MAC launches a new campaign (ok, excited is an understatement. I jumped up and down and screamed 'Lillyland! last time) and nothing pleases me more than beautifully photographed models.
However, after much internal debate, I decided that I wasn't really a trendy makeup follower. I don't drastically alter the colors or the techniques I use each season. In fact, I could even clearly recall each season's makeup looks. In the spring, my confidence is renewed and I like bold, bright colors in my lids, as well as bright pinks and fuchsias on my lips. Summer leads me to gold and bronzes with hints of baked shimmer all over. I try to stay classy in the fall, classic pin up girl looks with daring eyelashes and barely rosy cheeks. Winter, my hardest challenge- I play with a lot of brighteners to make sure my complexion is toasty, not pale and sallow. 
So, this really helps me pick out new products- for instance, I'm actually going to pass on the limited time Alice in Wonderland Book of Shadows by Urban Decay. Why? Because lovely as it may look, I'm going to persevere and not buy into the hype (also from what I understand, most of the colors in the palette are previous shades, just renamed. Great marketing gimmick.).
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Monday, January 11, 2010

Ulta & Me: A Love/Hate Relationship. (Mini Haul)



My history with Ulta has had it's up and downs, much like a crazy relationship with an ex-boyfriend you just can't seem to cut out of your life. My wonderful fiance, when asked by his parents what to get me for Christmas told them to get me a gift card for Ulta because he knew they sold makeup. On one hand, I'm thrilled because it's money... for makeup! On the other hand, I've had my share of bad customer service and just plain rudeness at Ulta. Anyways, I couldn't say no to a gift of makeup and the gift card was burning a hole in my pocket. So I went and splurged on a wide array of things.
Here's what I got:     The stars denote things that were on sale.

  • Ulta brand lipstick in Vegas, Baby!*
  • NYX round lipstick in Indian Pink*
  • Essie nail polish in Lollipop*
  • BigSexyHair Root Pump 
  • Ulta brand automatic eyeliner in Olive, Rasin and Teal Blue*
  • Andrea Modlash #53 black, my favorite staple falsies
  • Ardell Brow & Lash Growth Accelerator treatment gel
  • Stridex pads (ok, not really a beauty item just routine skin care, but still. I love lists)
Not too shabby for $44 bucks, right?
Some of these things are products that I've never tried out before, so I'll be sure to review them soon!
But I can tell you already that the Essie nail polish is amazing. I'll be honest, I used to be very thrifty with purchasing nail polish. I figured, nail polish is nail polish right? The only difference is color? Most of the ones I have are from a drugstore. But now that I tried Essie (regularly $8 but it was clearanced for $4) I can see what all the fuss is about! The quality is amazing. There's no streaks when I apply and it dried quickly to an absolutely gorgeous opaque color. It's just so much easier to get a great application and I'm a nail novice. The color Lollipop is a lovely candy apple red, it's so classy and simple on the hands. 




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Tuesday, January 5, 2010

BeneFit To Go



One of the many Sephora emails I get prompted me to browse through a few $10 dollars or less items that they had, and I walked away a happy camper. Possibly the best thing I purchased was a BeneFit best sellers sampler pack. It contained a little compact of Some Kind-A Gorgeous, a little tube of High Beam, a mini Posietint and a small bottle of That Gal. 
Here's the break down for those who've never tried BeneFit's products before. 
Some Kind-A Gorgeous- is not a true foundation- but actually a primer/foundation mix. It's in creme form and is very light to the touch. This is great for people who usually use tinted moisturizer and want to move to the next step closer to true foundation. I think people with oily skin will find that it a little too sheer, and that it doesn't stay for very long. I have combination skin and the best use I found for this was to keep it in my purse for convenient touch ups- while haul around powder, foundation, or concealer when you have this? I absolutely love it. One other problem is that the full sized product doesn't come in many shades, just one tan and one light formulas. I wish they could accommodate women with dark skin tones. 
High Beam- A cult favorite. I too, truly love this highlighter. It's a beautiful pinky pearl shimmer liquid that looks great on brow bones, cheek bones and the bridge of your nose. I find that the full sized product is a little too expensive for me ($24 for 0.45oz) but again, this sampler is so easy to keep in your purse, so that you can look fabulous on the go. 
That Gal- It's supposed to be a brightening face primer. This is actually the product that I didn't like all that much out of the four. I didn't really see any brightening what so ever nor did I feel like it did the job of priming. It's a great deal though- the normal sized That Gal is only 0.37oz and this trial size alone is 0.25! I think it might work best on super pale complexions, not medium, olive or dark tones. 
Posietint- The best for last! I'm a bit iffy about stains- I always thought the dark tones made me look brooding and sallow- and I haven't met a light color that I liked...until now! Posietint straight out of the bottle looks bright Barbie pink, which scared me a little bit. But on my lips, a few small dabs give me naturally flushed lips that I love. Too much of it though, will make me look very tacky. A word of advice about applying this to the cheeks- apply the tiniest bit with a foundation brush that already has a bit of foundation in it- that'll apply it evenly instead of blotching it- you don't want to look like you have a bad rash on your cheeks!
This is the BEST sampler that I have purchased yet, all of these products now travel with me all the time- you really don't need anything else for touch ups. 
Cost: $10 at Sephora
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Friday, January 1, 2010

Pretty in Pink Look


A Salute to Youth
There's no better universal girly look than pink eye shadow. I do declare that this look can make anyone look as sweet as icing. Believe it or not, I have seen pink eye shadow go horribly wrong on one occasion (Pink eye, anyone?) To make sure that you don't appear as though you've got a swollen eye, pick out a pink that melts into your skin. Usually, that means a peachy pink, and if you have one that has gold shimmer, that's perfect! If you don't- you can supplement it with a soft gold, not too yellow but more beige than metallic (Try Sally Girl mini baked shadow in Gold or Ulta brand eye shadow in Aztec Gold). We're really pushing youth and glow here.
Let's begin with finished skin- all the primer, concealer, foundation etc has been applied (check out my stippling foundation guide for step by step instructions on this airbrushed skin).
First up, pat a eye primer onto your eye lids with a finger and let it dry. Apply a white eye shadow all over the lid, from your eye brows down to the lashes, then layer a fine gold (like Coastal Scent's Inter Gold) over the white with a large fluffy eye shadow brush. 




Make sure to tap off any excess powder during this step, because nothing looks chalkier than white eye shadow! With the gold shimmer on top of it, this will really give your eye dimension, especially when we add the other shadows. Next, we'll take a bit of that pink/gold with a small eye shadow brush and lightly pat it onto the center of the lid, onto the ball of the eye. Be sure to blend that out on either side, toward the inner and outer corners of the eye. 

Next, take that light beige gold (here I'm using my all time favorite gold, Sally Girl mini baked shadow in Gold) and apply it starting from the inner corner towards the middle of the eye, blending where it meets that lovely soft pink. On the outer corners, with a small smudge brush, tuck in the tiniest bit of magenta shadow, just to help emphasize the pink (or you can use a berry colored blush or dark pink blush) just like the diagram below.


To complete the eye makeup, rim the upper water line with black liner, which is a little tricky! You have to try to apply eye liner with your main hand while the other hand holds up the lashes. If you're uncomfortable with this step, just take a small stiff liner brush and blend a bit of liner into the upper lash line. Then on the lower lash line, only apply liner about a quarter of the way in. The reason we're going for inconspicuous liner is that we want it to seem as though we aren't wearing any- that's the secret of youthful looks- it looks like minimal makeup is used. Finally, one light coat of black or brown mascara if you have thinner lashes, fuller ones can use just a coat of clear or none at all.
You might notice that in the pictures, there's a bit of shimmer fallout under my eyes. I fluffed most of that away with a large face brush, but I didn't worry too much if there was a little left over, it added another element of interest to this look.

I also swiped a bit of matching peachy pink with gold shimmer blush- (like your classic NARS Orgasm or Milani Luminous- it's an echo of the eye shadow color we're using), with a fan brush and lightly applied it to my temples and swept it down to the lower half of the apples of my cheeks. The tiniest bit will do- we want a warm glow, not a flustered pink face. For the lips, I stained them with a tiny bit of BeneFit Posietint for natural looking baby pink pout.  
All done! The end result is a beautiful soft glow, with a gorgeous golden pink sheen on your eyelids. 
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