Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hey dolls! I just wanted to let you know that I will be traveling for the next two weeks and won't be blogging during that time. I tried really hard to do some scheduled posts, but I have been super busy with work and getting ready for my trip, that I just didn't get a chance to draft anything of quality. I hope you can understand!!

In any case, I will definitely let you know all about my travels when I return and hopefully share some of my travel tips and my travel beauty routine. Till then, arrivederci!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Bobbi Brown Sheer Finish vs. MAC Select Sheer Pressed Powder

I really like the texture, feel, and finish of Bobbi Brown's Sheer Finish Pressed Powder as a setting powder and I like having it in my purse for touch ups. However, I hate the packaging. The square shape of the compact makes it larger than I would like and takes up a lot of space in my purse. So, I went to MAC and decided to try out the Select Sheer Powder to see if would be as good of a product as the BB powder, in better packaging.

As you can see, the BB compact is larger, pointier, and bulkier than the MAC compact. Also, the numbering of the BB powder is funky. I use the third darkest shade Soft Sand, or number 5. This throws me off because in the foundation range my number is 3.5, Warm Beige. The MAC powder uses the same numbering as the foundation and in both I am an NC25. 

Both compacts have a mirror and come with a powder puff. 

Both powders are very sheer and don't deposit a lot of color, which is what I wanted. Both powders are very silky, blend in to the skin, are great for setting my face makeup, and control my minimal shine. I really couldn't tell much difference between the two when worn on my face. Considering that I like the MAC packaging and numbering system better, I am now going to stick to the MAC Select Sheer powder. Oh, and the MAC powder costs $23 for 12g of product and the Bobbi Brown powder costs $34 for 11g of product, so clearly MAC wins this battle.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Beauty Blog Link Love

How are you dolls? This weekend was pretty busy for me. I am preparing for an upcoming vacation so I was getting things ready for my trip. In case you are in the mood for some light reading check out the following:

Check out these "Lust, Caution" inspired custom OCC Lip Tar mixes on My Funny Valentine, packaged with a lip brush applicator!

Phyrra does a wearable bright pink video tutorial with BftE Cosmetics.

A product that applies like a gloss, wears like a stain, and pH-adjusts like a grade school chemistry experiment is too good to be true - right? Find out if it is (or isn't) on theNotice.

With spring in the air, it's time to invest in a gorgeous coral lipstick! Amy Antoinette reviews the beautiful new Clarins Joli Rouge Pink Coral Lipstick.

Is OPI Just Spotted the Lizard really a dupe fore Chanel Peridot? Read polish insomniac's post to find out!

Prime Beauty tests out Laura Mercier's Limited Edition Belle Nouveau, a "new beautiful" diversion from the neons so popular this spring.

How do the Sleek Eau La La Eyeliners hold up against other famous brands, like Urban Decay and MUFE? Musicalhouses puts them to the test, and pits them against each other!

Ever undertaken a seemingly hopeless hunt for that elusive limited edition product that you just had to have? Lydia proves that good things come to those who wait after finding Guerlain's Cruel Gardenia Meteorites Illuminator.

Tracy at Beauty Reflections finally has Mediterranean light every day thanks to Guerlain Meteorites Perles d'Azur by Emilio Pucci!

Take a look at BUXOM's new Color Choreography Eye Shadow in Tango over at Makeup, Beauty and More.

If there's anything better than new Dior lipstick, it would be new Dior lipstick and nail polish! Join Lisamarie from Beauty Crazed in admiring the beauty of the new Dior Addict Extreme Lipsticks and Colour Blocked polishes!


Want to update your hair colour this spring? Miss Beauty Nerd is giving away two Nutrisse Mousse Nourishing Colour Foams for wannabe redheads and blondes!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Will This Eye Cream Benefit Your Dark Circles? Benefit It's Potent Eye Cream Review

I was perusing the cosmetic counters a few weeks ago when the Benefit sales associate started telling me about the Benefit skincare line that was released last year. I had heard good things but hadn't tried anything. Until that day. So how did she manage to impress me? By telling me that Benefit is owned by Louis Vuitton, and you know LV is gonna spend the money to do research and put out a great product. 

I've never owned anything by LV, but it sounded pretty good to me. I played around with the eye cream in-store, and then decided to try it out.

Aside from the cute packaging, the cream itself is creamy and light. It feels nice on the skin and is a good base for concealer...I didn't experience any creasing when I wore this under my eyes with concealer on top. In terms of the effects, this did start to decrease the darkness of my under-eye circles, but (yes there is a but) it was not moisturizing enough for me. My skin is dry, and since the under-eye skin is naturally thin and dry that area needs extra moisture. My opinion is that this eye cream would be most effective for someone in their late teens and early 20s....those who don't need the extra moisture that is required with age, but just want to start taking care of their under-eye area and perhaps need help with dark circles.

Since this didn't work out for me I am on the search for a different moisturizing eye cream. Any suggestions?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

How to Repurpose a Candle Jar for Makeup Storage

Due to my love of Bath and Body Works Slatkin & Co. Candles I have ended up with a lot of used candle jars, which I have repurposed and used for cosmetic storage. Here are a couple candles I used up during the winter holiday season and the process I use for removing the wax. 

1. Put the glass jar with the wax in the freezer for at least 1.5 hours. When you are ready to begin the wax removal process remove the jar from the freezer.

2. Take a butter knife and gently insert it into the wax. The wax will start cracking. 

3. Once the wax starts cracking, remove each piece.

4. Keep cracking the wax until all the wax is in pieces and can be removed from the jar. 

5. If the wicks are glued to the jar of the candle, slowly use the same butter knife to lift each wick and separate the glue.  

6. Remove each wick and as much of the glue and wax residue as you can.

7. Fill a small pot with about 1-2 inches of water and heat it up until the water is about to boil. Turn off the heat and put the glass jar in the water. 

8. The heat from the water will melt the wax/glue residue and you should be able to wipe it off with a paper towel or cloth. Remove as much as you can.

9. The heat from the water will also loosen the glue from any labels on the jar, so this is a good time to remove all labels. 

10. Wash the jar with dish soap and/or put it in the dishwasher. Once the jar is clean, if there are any small amounts of glue remaining, try soaking the jar in soap and water, or use a product like Goof Off to easily remove the glue. Once the jar is completely clean, you are ready to use it for storage!

These jars are the perfect height for Q-tips, so I put a piece of cardboard in mine to act as a divider and I used half for Q-tips and half for cotton balls. You can use these for storing soaps, lipsticks, liners, makeup brushes or whatever your heart desires. Happy organizing!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

My Cream Blush Discovery: Smashbox Be Discovered Cream Cheek Trio In Lights Review

I've made it quite known on this blog that I love cream blushes. So imagine how excited I was to see Smashbox release a trio of cream blushers for spring:

This is the Cream Cheek Trio called In Lights, one of two trios released in Smashbox's Be Discovered collection for spring. This trio has warm shades and the other one has cool shades. 

I thought this would be the perfect travel companion, since it has a bright coral shade, a light pink highlight shade, and a natural mauve shade that could double as a pinky bronzer or a natural toned blush. Most of the cream blushers in makeup-land are super pigmented, so I expected the same from this. 

Swatches L-R: Coral shade heavy & blended, Mauve shade heavy & blended, Highlight shade heavy & blended

The coral shade is gorgeous, but the mauve and highlight colors have so little pigment that they are barely visible when blended. When I wore the mauve shade as a blusher it looked like I didn't even have any color on my cheeks. Here I am wearing the coral shade on the apples of my cheeks and the highlight shade on the top of my cheekbones:

There is absolutely no reflection of light on the top of my cheekbones. I don't need my highlighters to be super shimmery, but a good highlighter should at least reflect some light. 

In terms of performance, the 3 shades did last all day and were super easy to blend. I was just really disappointed in pigmentation, especially when there are such great cream blushers out there (like MAC Cremeblend Blushes, Sue Devitt's Gel-to-Powder Blushes and Bobbi Brown's Pot Rouges). 

Do you like cream blushes? What's your favorite?

Disclaimer: The product in this post was provided by PR for consideration. As always, my thoughts and review reflect my honest opinions. 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Alternatives to Black Eyeliner

Although black is the most commonly used eyeliner shade, there are 2 great alternatives that provide a dark line, but aren't as dramatic as black.

Clockwise from top: Smashbox Jet Set Eyeliner in Intrigue*, MAC Eye Kohl in Teddy, MAC Technakohl Eyeliner in Steelpoint (LE), Bobbi Brown Gel Eyeliner in Chocolate Shimmer Ink

Brown Eyeliner: Brown eyeliner is great for fair to medium skined beauties because it is more natural looking than black. However, that doesn't mean dark skin tones can't rock brown. I like medium to dark shades of brown because it provides the intensity of dark eyeliner, without looking black. Personally, I wear a lot of brown eyeliner, both during the day and at night, most frequently when doing a brown smokey eye or when wearing natural or no shadow. My two favorites are Bobbi Brown Gel Eyeliner in Chocolate Shimmer Ink and MAC Eye Kohl in Teddy (both are permanent products)

Grey Eyeliner: In the same vein, I LOVE grey eyeliner because it is much softer than black, and really complements brown and green eyes. Again, I like using grey eyeliner with little to no shadow on the eyes. I love using colored eyeliner and grey gives me the feel of using a colored liner, but is still very natural looking. The trick here is to use a grey that is dark, not silvery, like most grey liners are. My two favorites are Smashbox Jet Set Eyeliner in Intrigue (currently part of Smashbox's spring 2012 release and it comes with a mini liner brush) and MAC Technakohl Eyeliner in Steelpoint (a limited edition liner that came out a couple summers ago and I wish they would re-promote).

L-R in Natural Light: Smashbox Intrigue, MAC Steelpoint, BB Chocolate Shimmer Ink, MAC Teddy

L-R w/ Flash: Smashbox Intrigue, MAC Steelpoint, BB Chocolate Shimmer Ink, MAC Teddy

Other colors like dark navy and aubergine are also great alternatives to black, but are also a bit more adventurous than brown and grey. 

*Disclaimer: This product was provided by PR for consideration. As always, my thoughts and review reflect my honest opinions. 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Beauty Blog Link Love

Hey dolls, how was your weekend? Mine was spent catching up with our neighbor/good friend who lived across from us and moved to Miami several months ago. I also ate a LOT of good food and relaxed. In case you are looking for some Sunday evening reading, check out these great reads:

Beauty's Bad Habit Blog goes a little wild with her loud and proud 80's inspired make-up look!

Musicalhouses takes a look at Sleek Blush by 3, the three-in-one blush compact that's set to be a hit!

Phyrra builds, swatches, and reviews her own Build Your Own Palette by Urban Decay!

This week at theNotice, Rae talks Viva Glam - but she's not alone. Don't miss her Viva Glam V swatches, FOTD, & review, and be sure to check out the shade on the rest of the Lipstick Bandits as well!

At Musing on Beauty, Mariella falls in love with Nars Radiant Tinted Moisturizer - a first for a foundation addict like her! Find out why she's liking it so much.

The Pink Sith weaves a fairy tale around Rouge Bunny Rouge Color Burst Lipstick in Word Of Mouth, but is it a happy ending?

K from Beautifully Addicted To has a go at her first BB Cream with Missha BB cream.

Lisamarie from Beauty Crazed takes the Essie spring collection out for a test drive - will the delicate lights and vibrant brights help bring on the warmer weather? We can only hope!

Looking for the perfect ballerina pink lipstick? Amy Antoinette has found it with L'Occitane Pivoine Delicate Lipstick.

Need some help with your shadow blending? Kajal Couture shares her fave blending shadows that help achieve a perfectly blended eye look.

Is Tracy at Beauty Reflections turning into a gloss girl? Check out her Sephora Volume Booster Gloss Serum review.

At Eyelining Obsessions, Claire explores her love/hate relationship with Vichy Dermablend Corrective Foundation.

Has Shannon at Lipstick Musings finally found the perfect eye shadow in Fyrinnae's Te Amo? Stop by for swatches and an eye of the day and see what you think!

Make up Forever recently launched the Rouge Artist Natural Lipstick line! Do you want to try one? Visit Spiced Beauty to win.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Does Pequi Oil Peek Your Interest? Couture Colour Pequi Oil Treatment Review

I heard that the Couture Colour Pequi Oil Treatment was the new Moroccan Oil, so I wandered over to Sephora to check it out.

Pequi oil is made from the Amazonian Pequi fruit and this version contains mostly natural ingredients. I thought it was pricey at $32 for 2 oz, but I thought it would be worth it if its' claims were true:

- Dull, damaged hair is up to 600% stronger* after one application of Pequi Oil Treatment.
- Pequi Oil Treatment provides a 250% improvement in shine on dull, damaged hair.

Ladies and gents, STAY AWAY from this! I got a sample and used it today in place of my Moroccan Oil. I applied to it my damp hair prior to blow drying. What a mess my blow dry process was! My hair felt so dry and got tangled - and I never get tangles with Moroccan Oil. After the drying process, my hair looked and felt like straw. It was super dry and crispy, and wasn't at all soft or shiny. I ended up using some Moroccan Oil and Hana Shine Shield just to be able to tolerate my hair because I didn't have time to re-wash it. I followed the directions on the box and I didn't use any other new hair products, so this Pequi oil was definitely to blame. 

Have you tried Pequi Oil? How was your experience?

Thursday, April 5, 2012

MAC Must-Haves: Samoa Silk Eyeshadow

With Pantone declaring Tangerine Tango as THE color for Spring, it's no wonder we have been seeing orange on the runways, in the stores, and on the makeup shelves. If you aren't quite ready to take the plunge with bright orange eyeshadow, you may want to try out my latest addiction: MAC's Samoa Silk Eyeshadow.

Samoa Silk is a veluxe finish shadow and is described by MAC as a polynesian peach. It isn't bright and doesn't have any shimmer in it, so it is very versatile. It can be used in the crease or on the lid, and the peachiness factor is just perfect. 

Swatch of Samoa Silk in daylight

Swatch of Samoa Silk w/ flash

Lately I have been wearing this all over the lid, with a darker peach or soft tan in the crease, and black liner. The peachiness really awakens the eyes and adds a touch of warmth, which is perfect for spring. Here I am wearing Samoa Silk on the lid, Soft Brown in the crease, and a touch of mascara.

This is a must have for me because I love neutrals, especially warm neutrals. This would be especially flattering for those with blue eyes because peach/orange opposes blue (color wheel theory) so the peachiness brings out the blue in blue eyes. This shade would also be great for mature women because the brightness of the peach counteracts the grey, sallow tones surrounding mature eyes.

What peach/orange shades are you rockin' this Spring?

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

What's In Giuliana Rancic's Makeup Bag

Hey dolls! Are you a fan of Giuliana (of E! News) and Bill Rancic (the 1st winner of The Apprentic) like I am? I really like their reality show Giuliana and Bill, and think they are such a cute, realistic couple. They also remind me a little of my hubby and I, so I think that's part of why I like watching their interactions. Aside from that, they are such a great inspiration to others, especially since they have been so public about their struggles conceiving a child and Giuliana's recent battle with breast cancer. I admire that their reality show is so positive and doesn't go into anything trashy or negative (like most reality shows do).

Since Giuliana works in entertainment, she often has a makeup artist doing her face for shows and events, but she frequently does her own makeup too. If you are interested in hearing about her favorite products check out the video below:

Tonight is the premiere of their 5th season and I will definitely be watching. Will you?


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