Tag Archives: Eye shadow

Fave Beauty Companies-2016

19 Feb

sephoraaislesAround this time, I start thinking about the products that I fell in love with last year. As I sat at my vanity today, I realized I fell in love with A LOT of things in 2016! Skin care, makeup, fashions… you name it. I think I have my visit to The Makeup Show in NYC last May to thank for that. I learned about so many big companies as well as “indies” that had products that were above so many others. Not to mention, I was able to ask questions about their ingredients so it could help me decide on possible items that my sensitive skin wouldn’t protest. So instead of me singling out each product that I am crushing on big time (and trust me—there are many), I thought I would talk about some of the companies that have given me items that are now a part of my regular beauty and glamour routine:

twinmedixTwinMedix: None of my makeup products would look or feel good on my face if my skin wasn’t in great condition. I had been using a “variety” of skin care products from different companies to try and get my skin to a place where I was happy. I admit, I am fighting the clock when it comes to anti-aging skin care for my face. I thought I was winning, but then I began to realize that all the different products I was using were usually created to work their best with other products from the same brand. Sometimes those sister products were hard to find, very expensive or even irritated my skin. I was kind of at a loss as to what to do. That was until I attended The Makeup Show in NYC. I was honored to meet and be able to have a little one-on-one time with the fabulous makeup artist, James Vincent. I asked him what smaller, unknown companies at the show should be on my “must see” list. His first answer?—TwinMedix. I stopped by their booth and met their fabulous President, Michelle, who was a sweetheart. I told her about the problems I was having with my skin and what I wanted to achieve in the long run. She introduced me to the ENTIRE line from TwinMedix. If I was going to try this brand, I was going to do it right and use ONLY that product….and I am so glad I did! My skin has NEVER looked and felt as good as it does now. I have been using each product faithfully since last May and I love the results. Their state-of-the-art technology enables them to create the purest and most professional formulas that integrate pharmaceutical-grade vitamins to treat and protect your skin. It is so high tech that there are very few products that are needed—a great cleanser (O2), a phenomenal exfoliator (X), and vitamin enriched serums (C10,E5 A15) that are used each day and night. For a redhead with sensitive skin, I have to say my face has never looked and felt so good. The vitamins they use are known to help fight against aging, and they are abundant in the TwinMedix line. As hesitant I was to try a skin care line without research, Michelle told me how to use each product and why! She even told me to let her know what I thought after I used them for a while… and I did. I am glad I found the TwinMedix line of skin care products. I still don’t like getting old but now I have the goods to help me help kick over the hourglass in the aging process!

katvondKat Von D: Being in the tattoo industry made me aware of the KVD line of cosmetics as soon as her line was released. Anyone who follows her knows that she doesn’t blend in with the crowd and she is proud of it. After many years of “blending”, I finally found my voice (and pen!) and began being the sassy redhead I am now. When I am out in public, I like doing my makeup in different ways. No matter what the attire is for the day, my makeup always has a pop to it. Sometimes it’s a bold lip, sometimes a rocker eye look. When the winged eyeliner look took off, I was lost. VERY lost! I couldn’t get it to look good like some girls that came to the tattoo shop. I watched videos, I played dress up, I tried. Then I learned that it might be easier to get the look I want if I used a better liner. What did everyone suggest? You got it… Kat Von D’s. It all started with her famous Tattoo Liner. I fell in love immediately! The long wear formula and easy peasy pen design let me get the winged liner look the way I liked. It even gave me the precision of the thin pen design to create some fun, “out there” looks. My next love was her Everlasting Liquid Lipstick. It is no secret that I like to talk. If I am out and decide to have a cup of coffee with a friend, I don’t want my ordinary lip color to end up on my teeth or all over the coffee cup. I want it to stay put for a long time. KVD’s Liquid Lipstick does just that! If it is on, it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. The colors she has are awesome—bold, flawless and long lasting. She even has colors that are REALLY bold, like purple, hot pink, blue and black. What I like to do is create my own color of the day. I pick the shades of Everlasting Liquid Lipstick that I want to blend, use a clean lip brush, and apply my own shade that will last. I don’t think I have ever created the same color twice! The possibilities are endless. My lip look can be as neutral or as strong as I want. In fact, when I went to order my latest KVD lip color, I had the opportunity to get a sample of her Lock It Concealer Cream. When it came, I thought I would just try it out since I don’t really have dark circles under my eyes. Well, that may be true but I couldn’t believe how “bright” my makeup looked on my face when I used it. The color was spot on (which is difficult for a redhead to find) and it carefully hid the flaws that I didn’t know I had! I was in awe and I ordered the full-sized product that week. I will be looking forward to sampling different things in the KVD line when I get the chance to get to a Sephora and adding to my favorite cosmetics. (Oh, by the way? Do not overlook her makeup brush collection. She may not have many of them but the ones she does have in her line are FABULOUS!)

makeupforeverMake Up For Ever: This is a big name when it comes to cosmetics. That’s probably because they are masters of just about everything in the industry! If you are looking for a product that you loved from another company and it recently got discontinued, I suggest you look at MUFE. They even have things I never knew about or thought I needed… but now are part of my makeup routine. One of those items is their Aqua XL Eye Pencil. I love my liquid liner on my top lid, but when it comes to the waterline on my bottom lid, it is hard to get any liner to stay there for a long time. The Aqua XL is perfect for just that. Not to mention, it is a pencil you have to sharpen yourself so you can get a nice tip for precise application. It is a product I use EVERY day. I am also a big fan of MUFE’s Aqua Seal, especially since almost all of my eye shadows are mineral loose powders. If I need to keep my eye look in place through the craziest of situations (all-night dancing, tear-jerker movies, photo shoots…in the rain), I will use a just a little on my eye shadow brush and pat it on using my shadows. It does dry quickly, so have an idea of the look you want before you start because it is meant to stay and IT DOES. This is also great to use if you want to create eye liners in wild shades. Using an angled liner brush, dip the tip in the Aqua Seal, pick up a bit of pigments from shadow pot and apply along the top lashes or in/below the bottom lash line. The bottle lasts a long time, just keep it sealed tight. When it comes to finding a foundation, I will take and suggestion or recommendations (let’s not forget about samples!) really help me decide on one I might like to try. I find my skin to be very sensitive to department store & drug store liquid make-ups. When I had the chance to pick the brain of a professional makeup artist, I asked what his go-to foundation was. He didn’t hesitate: Make Up For Ever’s Water Blend Face and Body Foundation. It is SUPER light but buildable. It doesn’t “hide” my skin but in fact makes my skin look natural and flawless. Again, the bottle is REALLY big and lasts a long time. Some might be put off by the price, but if a bottle lasts an entire year, that breaks down to pennies a day. Then, to complete my look, I like to give my face a nice dusting with an HD powder. It sets my makeup and leaves my skin flawless. The finishing powders I had used in the past left my face looking “cakey” so I was hesitant to try them again. Then I received a sample of MUFE’s HD Microfinish Powder and I’ve been using it ever since. It was hard to process that a powder could be white but it truly is colorless and anyone can use it. A nice, light finish for all day wear and perfect for movies, videos and photos. I always keep an eye on Make Up For Ever to see if they have any new items that I might love as much as these.

lamineralsLA Minerals: “Who?” you ask. Exactly. LA Minerals is a small indie company that I stumbled on while looking for products that wouldn’t irritate my sensitive skin many, many years ago. I was able to try many different formulas and shades (which they have many of!) to see what mineral powder foundation would work for me. They have samples available for almost all of their products so it was nice to try ones I liked and see after a couple of uses whether it would work for me. Well, they did. They ALL did! I ended up getting hooked on a light coverage formula (Valley Girl) for summer when I just need an all over dusting in the heat; a heavier coverage mineral makeup foundation (Hollywood) during the colder months when my skin is a bit is a little paler and uneven toned; a pure, no talc blush in a color that goes with everything I wear without giving me itchy skin; an oil-controlling finishing powder that keeps the shiny-ies away when my skin gets a little oily in the summer and during workouts; “diva dust” that works as a fantastic high-sparkle cheek, lip and eye highlighter; and pure mineral eye shadows that can go on wet or dry, contain no talc, and requires very little product for a great look. What is nice about LA Minerals is that they have a “frequent flyer” code every month for returning customers. You will never see this company in magazines, on TV, or in cosmetic stores. It is all done by one fantastic woman with a great product that thrives on referrals. I have been singing her praises for MANY years and will continue to do so! (Footnote: LA Minerals just released a pure mineral LIQUID foundation which its AWESOME, especially on my dry, winter skin.)

Paul Mitchell: If your skin and makeup are looking great, you might as well make sure you have beautiful hair too! After a horrid hair decision over 3+ years ago, I had to find someone that would fix my mistake and get my hair healthy again. My BFF at the time said he knew just the person and set up a time for her to come discuss my options. She was a miracle worker! She still keeps my hair, even today. I still have a bit of damage to my ends, but they are almost completely grown out. Whenever I would go see her for my appointments, I would ask her what items would work best on my hair to do this or that. The first item she suggested was a Paul Mitchell spray called “Hot off the Press”. It was a multi-function styling product that could be used with hair appliances to hold the style or after I was completely done with my hair for a good hold that wasn’t sticky or damaging. It was exactly what I needed and there is always 1-2 cans in my loft at all times. Since I had been “enhancing” my hair color over the past several years, it was important to find the right products that would extend the life of my color without causing more damage. PM came out last year with a fabulous line of products just for that! The Ultimate Color Repair line not only helps repair current damage but also seals in color preventing fading and keeps hair shiny & soft. This has been my go-to line ever since it came out to keep my auburn tresses bright and healthy! In addition to those favorites, I also have other Paul Mitchell styling products that I love that helps give me a fab look for the day/night. You will find Super Skinny Serum, Stay Strong, Thicken Up, Extra Body Finishing Spray in my collection at all times. Even with that chaotic hair experience, my stylist along with Paul Mitchell’s great products has helped my hair to get healthy again… and has what I need to keep it that way!

We all know that when we see an advertisement in a magazine or on TV for a beauty product, our ears perk up and we try to justify how this great product could fit into our beauty routine. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. As I have gotten more mature, I have learned that new doesn’t always mean better. Although for us makeup junkies, it is hard to turn away from something new that looks great. Nowadays, I find myself asking “Is it worth the time and money to try this or should I stick with the product I already have that I KNOW does exactly what I want it to do?” Sometimes I do venture off and try something new, but I am also finding that loyalty has its privileges…and results!

Let me know what you think about this: Do you have a brand that you are completely loyal to? Do you have any “must have” products from different brands that do what you love and won’t try anything else? Or are you an “I have to try it!” person who is always looking for something newer/less expensive/better? Let me know your thoughts on brands or products you LOVE!
makeupaisles

Black is the New Black….

31 May

imageI think every makeup connoisseur has SOMETHING black in their cosmetic collection. If they don’t?…. they should. Nowadays, black goes beyond just mascara. If you go down the makeup aisle at your local drugstore or venture into your Sephora mecca, the items you see will most likely have a “shade” that is a form of black. What is nice is that you don’t have to be considered goth to wear black anymore. Black is back. Plain and simple. And black glamour is awesome.

There are a few things I have in my makeup go-to bag that are black and are MUST HAVES for me no matter where I go. I may not use them every day, but I need to know they are close by…just in case!

imageL’Oreal Paris Infallible Eyeshadow in “Eternal Black”: It is hard to believe when any makeup product refers to itself as “24hrs” but this one comes really darn close. This silky shadow comes in a little pot that you apply with your finger. The key is to just dot and blend QUICK! A little goes a long way. I like this shadow as a lid color when I want a bold look or a great smoky edge when using a pop of color. The glitter content is high but because of its great binders, it doesn’t crease or fallout. Don’t worry about hot days either–it’s waterproof and sweatproof! For an extra intense look, I will apply it along my bottom lash line with a flat-top brush. It is also available in 12 other bright colors. Sexy! (Available in most major drug and retail stores, $7.99)

imageUrban Decay 24/7 Waterline Eye Pencil in “Legend”: If you are like me, you love that dark, crisp black eye lined look on your lower lid. The problem? It only stays that way for a few hours. Grr. I actually found this product at Sephora when I did a search for a 24 hour pencil liner. In fact, it was the first one to pop up! I love the fact I can sharpen it myself to get a nice, crisp point on the pencil. It glides on with no tugging and yes…. it stays put all day! The black is a nice creamy, demi-matte shade that goes on easily and stays put. If you like the formula and its stay power, it comes in five other shades too! (Urban Decay, $20)

imageSenna Lash Detail Mascara: Over the years, I have tried a countless number of mascaras in different formulas and colors with all types of tubes and brushes. It is probably the one makeup item that I am the most fickle about. I really really like a few different ones I have tried, but to say I love them enough to throw out all of the others wouldn’t be possible. Not to mention, I have different mascaras for looks I want–natural, lush, evening, day, even for when I wear false eyelashes. The one thing that has been difficult for me, no matter which mascara I use, is being able to hit those teenie tiny lashes in the inner and outer corners of my eyes. The bigger brushes either can’t reach them or leave a clump of mascara or worse…a blob of black on my lid or side of my nose. When I attended The Makeup Show earlier this month, I was given a tube of Senna’s Lash Detail Mascara to try. Wow! Anyone that is very detailed about their makeup look needs this mascara, no questions asked! The “brush” is about as thin as a coffee stir straw. It gets in the corners without a problem and hits the bottom lashes from corner to outside without an issue while coating them with a “don’t move” formula. Whether you wear your own lashes with your favorite mascara or add false lashes for extra fullness & length, don’t forget the hidden lashes. Give them some love too. (Senna Cosmetics, $20)

imageDuo Brush-On Adhesive with Vitamins in Dark: Speaking of lashes, I can tell you I have been trying to master fake lashes for years. I either put them on too high, too far to the right, too far to the left, get glue everywhere but on the lid, you name it. Instead of fake lashes, I end up with a real disaster. If I do happen to get them close to normal, I always seem to have a small space between my own and the strip where you can see the skin tone of my lid, and getting a liner in between is virtually impossible. At The Makeup Show, the press was given a set of fake lashes to try. I liked the look of them in the package–soft, long, dark and full (but not too full). The lash glue was okay, but I still had issues with applying it neatly. On my next visit to my local drug store, I checked to see what other options there were in the fake lashes aisle. I saw all different kinds at all different prices with styles from natural to peacock feathers. Umm… wow. But then I saw something unique. They had this fake eyelash glue that was applied with a thin brush–similar to a thin eyeliner brush–that had an easy to apply, stay put adhesive. But what I really loved about it? It was dark…almost black! And when I put the lashes on, it looked like I had epic top liner on too! Two pluses in one product. The lashes stayed put ALL DAY with no smearing. This is JUST what I needed! (CVS, $6.49)

imageHard Candy Lip Gloss in “Black Rose”: I’m not so goth where I will wear straight-up black lip gloss or lipsticks, but I like to add a touch of midnight to a few of my favorite pencils and lip colors. Some of the products I have tried cannot be altered–just all-day black and only black. Personally, I like to wear a reds, dark wines or purples and add a thin black gloss over it for just a bit of an edge. So far, Hard Candy has been the only cosmetic company to offer that. Granted, it doesn’t have a long wear, but if you put it over a lip product with some serious stay power?… a touch up now and then it is well worth it especially since the gloss is seriously inexpensive! A great way to bring out your mysterious side with your regular colored lip products. (Walmart, $5.00)

I have talked before about how it is okay for you to embrace your inner goth even if you aren’t a teen anymore, but when it comes to black makeup items, you need something! You can be as edgy as you want with a touch of class without looking outrageous or out of place. If working with black makeup products is out of your element, take some time to practice till you are comfortable with the application and the look. You have a lot less room for error when creating a look with blacks than others so take your time and try different techniques. I don’t usually recommend this, but it might help to watch a couple of good YouTube videos for help or ideas. I can happily say that it won’t be long before this sassy redhead will be creating a YouTube channel to help you with many of the things I write about here! I am excited–I hope you will be too!
Roses

30 Days Of Beauty…Day 6

7 Jul

BrushesYup. *sigh* I’m still a day behind. There’s nothing worse than feeling like a dog chasing its own tail. I will find a way to get back on track. It might require me to lock myself in my shed for two days, but if I have to I will. It won’t help with the laundry I’m behind doing but my writing will be up to date.

30DaysToday is a good day on the list: Brushes. It is kind of an easy one to tackle for me, but I will do a little thought processing while I share. Most of you know that I spend my days helping out my guys at their tattoo shop. They are artists. FABULOUS artists. One is amazing at photo realism. Another is great with American Traditional. I have a girl who does great stippling work. And my owner loves Japanese and does beautiful script work. There is something for everyone. Even though they all have a different style, they are all particular about one thing: their equipment. You could pick out the most beautiful pink ink to tattoo a rose with, but if your artist uses a crappy, old, bent tattoo needle and uses a worn out machine to draw it on with, my guess is your rose isn’t going to be very pretty. In fact, it might not even look like a rose. It could be blurry, uneven, messy or even blotchy. Not cool. All because you picked an artist with the wrong tools.

The same goes for a great makeup look. You need the right tools.

I’d be willing to guess the makeup that the models are wearing at the Christian Dior fashion show was not applied with cotton balls and Q-tips. Those models have a fab makeup look not just because someone used good makeup but because the artists used the right tools. Tools they selected based on how they create their looks, brushes and tools they are comfortable using, and brushes that are dependable–solid. No matter what the price, it is what you are going to want in this industry.

When I first started dabbling in the skin care and makeup industry, the first thing I wanted was a high-end set of quality makeup brushes. I picked up one here and there till I had an amazing set. I will admit—I spent a lot of money on them. But I had it to spend and wanted a set that was good and would last. I got just that! Now, that set is almost 10 years old and are still in great shape. I wouldn’t trade them for anything. But since then, I have found a few other brushes that were much less expensive and still had the qualities I liked. They are made of good, solid materials; they don’t shed; and they clean easily. Am I upset that I could have spent less on my full set? No. I got brushes in sizes that no other line carried except the higher-end brand. But it’s nice to know that there are good quality, less expensive makeup brushes for the beginner glamourista!

Here are my two go-to brush lines that you will find in my makeup case. In fact, they are the ONLY brands you will find. I love the way they apply makeup, giving me a look I like while doing what they are supposed to without leaving bristle pieces everywhere. Two good, solid brands of brushes depending on the kinds you want and the price you want to spend. Day 6 of my 30 Days of Beauty brings my selections for brushes:

Sephora BrushesSephora Collection # Brushes — Sephora’s synthetic brushes are professional and tough as nails. I never have had any fall out with the bristles. The long handles make it easy to manipulate to get the look I want. And they wash easy with mild antibacterial soap. The price is high for many of the sizes, but their line has many shapes & designs for the look you want. From brows to lips and everything in between, these brushes do not fall short. At all! Available only at Sephora Brush Sets.

Elf Brushese.l.f. (EyesLipsFace) Brushes — Surprised? It’s okay, I was too. I was desperate for a lip brush one day and stumbled across their brushes at a Target. They had an EXTREMELY inexpensive lip brush which worked great! Since I wear several shades of eyeshadow each day, I thought it would be good to have a few extra inexpensive brushes so I wouldn’t mix colors and get a look I wasn’t aiming for. I wasn’t just pleased with the “higher end” e.l.f. brushes, but also liked the $1 brushes as well! Go figure! I will say, stores like Target don’t carry every style of brush they make, but they have quite a few. For a bigger selection, check out their website and see what they have there. Also, sign up for their emails. They often will have one-day sales and the discounts are phenomenal!!
Check the e.l.f. website for brushes for a store near you or purchase what you want from there.

Don’t chance a beautiful makeup look with items that don’t have what it takes. Do some research and find what is important to you in your brushes. Create your piece of art with the tools that you like, and will make you feel and look fabulous!!

When One Isn’t Enough…

13 Jun

imageI am guessing that if you ask any true fashion- or glamourista how many pairs of black shoes they own, the response of “just one” would be slim to none. There are times we need several STYLES of something in the same color, but only a few of us can actually say we have MANY colors/sizes of the same item or brand. As I put on my eyeshadow this morning, I am one of those select few. Certain makeup items will jazz me so that I will actually go to the store to get more of the one that I bought to try. Although it is not as frequent, I will also find an an article of clothing that I like so much that I will get it in every style and color. I guess, as a fashion follower, this is every brand’s dream. Get the buyer hooked. No matter what the competition offers, they know they have you as a loyal customer to at least one thing.

So, I guess you’re asking yourself, “What item does Sassy have an abundance of colors of in her makeup drawer or closet?” Let me answer that for you:

imageLancôme Eye Shadow – Once upon a time, I was a winner of a huge bag of goodies from Glamour Magazine. Holy bonanza, the stuff I got was insane. Makeup from high end designers, a flat iron, perfumes, brushes, bags… it was crazy. One thing I got was a Lancôme eyeshadow in “blue”. I thought I might never use it because I never wear blue on my eyes. In fact, other than jeans, I don’t wear blue anything. But this color actually coordinated perfectly with denim and I began using it as contour color often. The formula was soft, easy to apply (wet or dry) and had an all-day wear without fading or falling out. I was so happy with it that I picked up a few other shades. Then a few more. And a few more. I probably have over 20 single Lancôme shadows in my collection now and I always have a combination to compliment my look of the day. Do I need more? Probably not. Will I GET more? Most likely. Macy’s, $20.00

imageBuxom Full-On Lip Polish – Again, let’s talk about the “gift with purchase” program shall we? Way back when, I got my birthday mini gift from Sephora. It was a nice mini lip pencil and a small tube of a Buxom lip color in a very neutral shade (no longer available). I used it often. I loved the thick consistency and that little bit of tingle that made my lips fresh and plump. Although the gloss gave my lips a natural look and kept them moisturized, it didn’t have an “all day” wear. Didn’t matter to me though. In almost 100 different shades, there is a color for anything, anytime, anywhere. A touch up now and then doesn’t bother me at all. It must not–I own over 20 and am still adding! Sephora, $19.00

imageRimmel London ScandalEyes Waterproof Kohl Eyeliner – A while back, I took it upon myself to test drug store pencil liners against high-end department and speciality store brands. I did my research and tried three popular brands of each. With a high recommendation, one of the drug store brands I tried was ScandalEyes. I will be honest…I was hesitant to put a lot of stock into into its reviews. Most Rimmel eye products I had tried in the past was a serious fail for me. Smudging, running, flaking. Not good. But it got rave reviews from many consumer and reader’s choice awards so I put it in. My first thought?…GREAT color selection! Even though I’m usually a strictly black waterline girl, I loved the fact they also had a Sparkling Black with a hint of shimmer, a cool turquoise for a layering look with pop, and an epic silver to layer with other colors for a dramatic look. These colors, no lie, held their own all day without fail. Not a bit of smudging, no running, stay put color, a wide variety of shades. I like that they can be sharpened. I like this because I can get two of each pencil–one that I can give a crisp, sharp tip to for fine lining, and the other can be more blendable for a bit of smudging. Do I need two pencils for lining? Hell no, I could just use one. But at this great price? Why not! Last count, I think I had eight of these liners–two in each black and one each in four other shades. If they came out with others? I’d definitely be quick to pick one (or more) up! Ulta, $4.49

imagePINK by Victoria’s Secret Athletic Hoodies/Tops – Trust me when I say I am not a name shopper. I know good brands and what would be considered a good deal on some names or designers. But do I fill my closet on just high-end fashions? Oh HELL NO! I am all about style, fit, and what I like. That simple. But when a name or brand has something I like, that fits good, and is stylish? I’ll set aside some dough-rae-mee to get what I like. If I can land a sale or deal? Even better. And that’s what happened when I found this line by PINK at VS. It started with a limited edition melon-colored athletic hoodie that I fell in love with at a retail store. I got a coupon and immediately ordered another color (flecked grey) after the first wear. When the line was discontinued, I moved from a full zip to a curved-hem half zip in Minty Fresh. Am I done? Probably not yet. I got one more coupon in the mail and will probably get another curved half-zip before the month is out. They are easy to wash, comfortable to wear, stylish and eye catching. My kind of fashion!
PINK, $45.95

imageGuess? Jeans – Here is another case where the name doesn’t sell the product…the look and fit does. We all know Guess? jeans have been around since 1981, making them one of THE most popular brands of denim for both men and women. Since then, Guess has introduced many other fashions and accessories. Ranging from t-shirts and coats to jewelry, fragrances, purses and more, Guess continues to be a big name in the fashion industry. The Guess brand in Sassy’s house is HUGE! I have several pieces of stylish jewelry, gorgeous handbags, shoes, coats, t-shirts and more. But what I have the most of and continue to add to often is my collection of jeans. I remember purchasing my first pair of Guess jeans after a mini windfall over 8 years ago. Fact: I still have those jeans. They have never faded, lost their shape, shrunk, ripped, nothing! That’s a good product if you ask me. Another reason I love my Guess jeans? I take the same size every time. I don’t have to worry about a different fit or style. The size I order in skinny jeans is the size I order in straight cut and that’s the same size I order in boot cut. No “guessing”, not wondering. I love that. Plus it makes it easier to keep an eye out for sales too. Right now? I’d be willing to bet I have over ten pairs of Guess jeans in all different styles and colors. And I’d also be willing to bet they will ALWAYS be a fashionable choice. Guess or Guess Factory, prices vary.

imagee.l.f. Makeup Brushes – Any artist will tell you that the painting is only as good as the materials you used to create it. I honestly have to say that you if you bought a high end foundation, blush, eye shadow, powder, lipstick, etc. then applied them with a cotton ball and a few Q-tips, my guess is that you wouldn’t achieve that epic look you just saw in Glamour magazine. There is no doubt that there are probably more makeup brushes that do different things than you could count. Are all necessary for a very nice, professional glamour look? If you are a makeup artist working Fashion Week in NYC, then yes. But for home? No. Hell no! No more than a few are necessary for an above-average, put together do-it-yourself look. A long time ago when I decided to work with makeup, my first glamour priority was to get myself some professional brushes. I spent a lot. Probably more than I should have. Do I like them? I love them! They are about eight years old now, haven’t shed, wash easy, kept their shape, and only a little wear & tear on the wooden handles. But, I have to ask myself: were all these brushes worth what I spent? Probably not,…but they are cool! Recently, my daughter bought an e.l.f. Concealer Brush to help her with her mineral coverup. She loved the brush so much, she went out and got three others. They were soft, non-shedding, good handle length, easy to clean. So now I was intrigued. Were brushes priced from $1+ comparable to ones I had paid up to $40 for? I guess it depends on what you want to do with them, the types you want, and the look you want. But looking back, I think many of the e.l.f. brushes would have been just fine for a beginners collection to use various types of makeup with professional results. My favorites? e.l.f. Studio Blush Brush, $3; Defining Eye Brush, $1; Studio Angled Eyeliner Brush, $3; Small Stipple Brush, $3; Lip Defining Brush, $3. I probably use one of these brushes each day, find them an asset to my makeup look as well as my wallet, and give my already large professional brush collection a great boost! Walmart, $1 and up

So, you have my specific list of frequent items you’ll find in my glamour routine, all in various shades, shapes and styles. I’m sure there are others, but these are necessary for my own edge and panache to create a look I am happy with. They can have subtle differences, but these precious few that I turn to almost daily gives me that extra hint of jazz and confidence in my step. How about you? Have a go-to line or brand that you would own everything of if you had the chance? Feel free to confess to Sassy… tell me you secret glamour addiction. I promise I won’t tell!
image

15 Must-Have Drugstore Glamour Items

14 Aug

Drugstore makeupEveryone loves to share their top drugstore makeup finds with their readers, followers and fans. I’m no different. Even though I have makeup items from the Dollar Store all the way up to a $50 blush (I won it–hell no I didn’t buy it!!), there is no reason why you can’t get a to-die-for look from your local drugstore. I’ve even expanded my Top 10 to a “Top 15” because I want to make sure your drugstore look is COMPLETE!
image
So here we go…my drugstore Top 15:

1. Say Yes To Cucumbers Soothing Hypoallergenic Facial Towelettes– No one paints a masterpiece on a dirty canvas. The same goes for your face. Using a gentle but effective cleansing wipe that will quickly give you a clean surface to start your work of art is the perfect way to start your day. Say Yes To products have always been a favorite of mine especially since they have different formulas to target different problems. I like the cucumber ones the best. They are cooling and perfect for sensitive skin.

2. L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Texture Perfector Serum Concentrate – If you have cleaned your face, you better take care of it. A good anti-aging cream is something to help combat the signs of mother nature without interfering with the look of your makeup. As far as drug store serums, I like this one the best. It it absorbs quickly and gives my skin a smooth all over feel.

3. Physicians Formula Correcting Primer 3-in-1 (Corrector + Primer + Sun Protection) – Three great features in one product. This correcting primer is perfect for me because it comes in a green tint which helps me balance my uneven skin tone. This keeps my smooth and even so I do not look washed out. It also prepares my skin for my foundation as well as gives me a minimal amount of necessary sun protection. With its built in brush, it is easy to apply and is exactly what my skin needs for its bottom layer.

4. Maybelline Fit Me! Shine Free Foundation – A genius must have created the premise for this unique product. A gentle foundation in a stick for easy application has a center strip that is an oil mattifier to prevent shining during the warmer months. Brilliant! The coverage last all day without the foundation sliding down my face or becoming blotchy after a few hours. Perfect for anyone with oily skin or breakthrough shining.

5. Rimmel Match Perfection Skin Tone Adapting Concealer – I have never really ever needed of concealer. Come on, don’t hate! I guess I am just blessed with no dark circles. But when I started working at my new J*O*B*, I found some nights just felt longer than others. And where did it show? Yup, my eyes. This really cool concealer doesn’t just hide dark circles or imperfections on the skin, but it also puts in a nice highlight to areas that look nice with a bit of oomph. Although it doesn’t come any many shades, I found one to match my pasty white skin tone perfectly.

6. Maybelline EyeStudio Color Tattoo Eyeshadow – I have not hidden the fact that I do not have time during my day to touch up my makeup. When I put it on in the morning, I would be very happy if it looks exactly the same way when I get home at 5 o’clock at night. That’s why I really like this eyeshadow. It is a highly pigmented cream, and goes on easily and quickly with your fingertip. And it stays…ALL DAY! I like the fact that I can use a single color all over my eyelid for a simple, jazzy look or I can combine one or two with easy blending for a more intense look. If I wear this eyeshadow, I never check my look in the mirror during the day–I know it will stay strong all day!

7. Milani Shadow Eyez 12 HR Eyeshadow Pencil – Even though I love my cream eyeshadows, I also like to have other options. This long-lasting eyeshadow pencil is great because it can give the eyes a lot a depth when combined with a darker liner. It has staying power so it can be used as a highlighter, a shadow, a contour color for a deep smoky look, or even as a bold colored liner. I like the fact I can sharpen it as crisp as I want to get it to go exactly where I’d like it. Sometimes I will use a light Tattoo cream shadow shade all over my lid, swipe on a line of bold color with Milani’s Eyecolor Pencil for pop, then line top and bottom with black for an edgy rocker look. Ka-pow!

8. Milani Liquid Eye Liquid-Like Eye Liner Pencil – Long wearing eyeliners are a must in my makeup ensemble. I have all kinds, shapes, sizes, colors. They are the signature on my make up look. I like the various bold colors that Milani’s come in, and I have had the best luck with these not just staying strong in color pigments but also staying strong on my waterline. I tend to use just these pencils on the bottom of my eyelids. They seem to have the best holding power under there.

9. Rimmel Scandal Eyes Waterproof Gel Eyeliner – Although I have several liquid eyeliners that I use on my top lids, lately I tend to lean more towards a smudged look when it comes to lining my upper lids. That’s why I really like the waterproof gel eyeliner. The thickness of the line and the darkness of the smudging is totally up to me. It’s also nice to line the upper lids with a heavy smudge line then add a little color along the edge if the top lash line. It just gives it a dramatic effect. Plus this gel liner really stays–it is still on even at bedtime!

10. L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Miss Manga Mascara – I have to admit, it is really difficult for me to find a drugstore mascara that I can put in the “love” category. Most of my favorite mascaras are high-end brands or purchased through department or specialty stores like Sephora. I grabbed this one on a hunch and also because it was new and the packaging was jazzy. (Yeah, I’m a sucker for advertising.) So far, I have been quite pleased. Definitely no smudging, no flaking and lashes are still holding strong at the end of the day. First drugstore mascara that I can say that about. Kudos!

11. Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blush – When cream blushes hit the scene again a while back, visions of my mother with little pots of lipstick colored goop flashed before my eyes. I knew the powder blush I was using faded in an hour which didn’t make me too happy. I’m glad I gave Dream Bouncy Blush a try because it was nothing like anything out at the time. It’s not a heavy cream–it’s a lightweight gel with a smooth texture and blend-able color. The formula seems to have longer wear which I like even more than powder. Oily complexions should not be scared–it’s not heavy at all. Good shades with no shine!

12. L’Oreal Paris Infallible Never Fail Lip Gloss – I think I am going on my fifth year or more that I’d have to put this is as my favorite lipgloss. And for all the right reasons! It’s available in many, many different shades–warm, cool & neutral. It’s not sticky, but its consistency is just heavy enough to keep the color strong for hours. And if all that isn’t enough, the fact it conditions your lips while it’s on sets it apart from all the rest! I’m not sure if I’d agree with it’s 8 hour claim, but I would say out of all glosses I own, it does stay on and true to color the longest.

13. Physicians Formula Talc Free Mineral Wear Correcting Translucent Powder – This item is odd looking but it does the job. It’s a tri-color talc-free powder that adjusts with your skintone to set your makeup look giving you a nice, even matte finish. Plus it’s formula is gentle even on the most sensitive skin!

14. Milani High Speed Fast Dry Nail Lacquer – Some people may not say a coat of nail polish is part of your daily makeup routine, but for a well-put together look, I think it is a necessity. Nicely polished nails–in any color–just show that you care about your appearance. Does it have to be a flashy color? No. A neat white or bare pink is fine. But a fast-drying coat of polish that you can put on in minutes before flying out the door can really give you a well, put-togethered look.

15. Paul Mitchell Hold Me Tight Finishing Spray – Wait!! Before you grab your coat, purse, sunglasses and cell phone, give your hair one last look, fluff where needed, then give it an all over spray with this non-sticky, soft but strong holding hair spray. It keeps the frizzies in check, holds your style and doesn’t damage your hair with stiff gluey ingredients. Even though it is a salon brand, thank heavens you can get it in your local drugstore. My hair will be forever thankful!

So, I went a little over the usual Top 10 lists, but the fact is this: with my 15 items? Your skin, face, nails AND hair will be looking fab. I want to make sure you have not just MY favorite drug store items but my favorite items that can give you a complete look as well as take care of your skin! I’m not sure what drugstores are local to where you live so I didn’t want to quote stores or prices since they can vary. But, FYI? … All of the items I listed were found on walgreens.com and iPhone app. That can give you a lead on where you might want to start.
image
Hope this gave you some helpful info before your next glamour run at the store. Stay sassy ladies!!

A Trick Of The Trade…

3 Aug

image
Over the years, I have been asked on several occasions to try and review different cosmetics. One of the big items I get many samples of is loose mineral eyeshadow. I put any samples I get into 5 gm sifter jars and arrange them in my makeup drawer usually from light to dark. I would easily say I have over 100 samples of different colors. I’m not proud of that. I will probably have enough to last me till I get to the nursing home someday, and then will have enough to trade for chocolate pudding on weekends.

Although I have tons of different colors of loose mineral eyeshadows, I’m sad to say I use very little of them. It’s not that I don’t like them. In fact I love them! They are natural, highly pigmented, long lasting shades that take very little to achieve a desired look. But here is the problem: they are messy. If I don’t make a mess with the powder falling off the brush, I then have to fight the mess of shadow fallout on my face and cheeks. That part is annoying. I’ve always tried to follow the rule: do your eye makeup first, but even then, some mineral shadow falls out and can’t be blended naturally into the skin when it comes time to prepare your face. Then a face cleanser wipe is needed to clean the entire face–minus the eyes–and the face routine must be redone. Annoying. Hassle. Bah.

During my recent Twitter surf, I might have found the answer to my loose mineral eyeshadow problems. I’d love to give credit to the original poster but it’s been around Twitterverse so long now, I’ve lost track of how it was mapped! So, I decided to just throw up this “How To” blog post so if you are like me, you can get a solid grip on these loose high pigment shadows without your bathroom counter looking looking like a powdery rainbow explosion.

What you will need:

  • Loose powder mineral eyeshadows in jars
  • Q-tips
  • Rubbing alcohol (70% Isopropyl Rubbing Alcohol is the best)
  • Small piece of Saran Wrap
  • Pressing pans & compacts (if desired)

image1. Take your loose mineral eye shadow and remove the sifter if there is one. Gently tap the container on a counter or table so all the shadow is even at the bottom. If you want to add or mix colors, do it now. Make sure after you add any new pigments, you replace the cap, shake to mix & tap to make it even again.

image2. Take the cotton off one end of the q-tip so all you have is the stick. CAREFULLY add a couple of drops of alcohol to the powder. You can do this with an eye dropper or by dunking the cotton end of the q-tip in the alcohol and squeezing the tip with your fingers so the drops go in the container.

image3. Mix the powder shadow/alcohol mixture with the stick end of the q-tip. If it’s very dry, thick or clumpy, add one drop of alcohol at a time till it becomes a thick but still smooth paste.

image4. If you want to put it in a shadow pan, use the q-tip to scrape it in. If you want to keep it in the jar, smooth it out as much as possible. Take the small piece of Saran Wrap and lay it over the shadow. Take a quarter (for a pan) or a bottom of a small tube, like a lipstick tube (for a jar) and press down a couple of times to pack it. Let it set with the weight on it for a minute or two.

image5. Remove the plastic wrap and check to see if it is packed and solid. If it’s still loose or clumpy, add another drop of alcohol and pack again. If it’s too watery, let the alcohol evaporate for 5-10 minutes then pack again to see if it hardens. (You could also add a bit more powder shadow to thicken it up a bit, leave the top off for 5-10 min. then repack again.). If it is a perfect solid shadow, then you did it!

image6. Leave the open jar or pan out in the air for 15-30 min to let any remaining alcohol “burn off”. Then take the finish product and either cap it if it’s in a jar or put the pan in a compact. Done, solid, no more mess! Your “new” solid eyeshadow is ready to use! Go play makeup!,

**NOTE** – Make sure the shadow is completely dry and packed before you use it. If it is the slightest bit creamy or “wet”, that means the alcohol hasn’t evaporated completely or you used too much and putting it near your eyes can cause burning and irritation. If you feel this happening, rinse your eye out with water and wait a while longer for the alcohol to evaporate. You can also add a bit more pigment powder in a similar shade to help thicken it and quicken the process.

The one thing I love about doing this is that I can blend various colors together to get unique shades. For example, tonight I combined a very light aqua blue, a bit of very dark blue sparkle and a bit of cream frost for a smoky peacock turquoise. SOOO pretty. My next challenge will be a deep maroon purple!

If you are looking for reasonably priced pans and pallets, the best place I’ve found is Stars Makeup Haven. They have all kinds of empty containers. Since my samples tend to be in small quantities, I’m leaving them in their 5 gm jars and just “solidifying” my favorites.

Enjoy mixing and creating! This is a great way to keep your favorite loose shadows ‘tight’ without a powdery mess in your drawers, purses, cases or bags! Try it and enjoy a new way to use natural mineral eyeshadows in a controlled, solid way!

Is There Ever A Limit?

16 Jun

Overload

Today, I had an unexpected day off from my j*o*b*. I wasn’t too upset. A weekday to myself to do what I wanted is something that hasn’t come my way in months. Don’t get me wrong–I love my job at the tattoo shop. It’s fun, it’s different, I get to meet great people, and it keeps me out of the makeup aisles at drug and department stores. Except today.

I don’t think I was off the phone with my boss for two seconds before I was grabbing my comfy shoes, keys, purse, cell phone and credit card and was in the car heading for the mall. It was like old times. In my early days as a writer, I would grab my tablet, pick up a drive-thru coffee, then head out for hours at a time testing, trying, sampling and sniffing the latest and greatest additions to the glamour market. Now, I don’t get to play makeup as often as I used to, but when I do get the chance–like today–I take full advantage. And I did.

I did have a goal in mind when I left the house: find a rich, deep, violet purple lip gloss with a lot of shine and sparkle. That was it. One thing. Simple, right? Wrong. Not when someone releases a glamaholic in a local Sephora store. Opportunities? Endless. Overwhelming? Not a chance.

With one item to find, I entered my makeup Mecca and began my search. I went right to the department of the brand I liked the most, but to my dismay they did not have the color I was looking for. So, the worst case scenario followed: I had to search the ENTIRE STORE–front to back, top to bottom–to seek out what I wanted. The question remains…did I find what I was looking for? Not really. Did I find other mind blowing cool shit? Ab-so-freaking-lutely!!!

So, what did I land in my makeup haul today? Let’s take a look:

Purple glossSEPHORA COLLECTION Ultra Shine Lip Gloss: I know I talked about these in my last blog post, but seriously I can’t get enough of these little gems. Sephora’s ultra shine lip glosses come in a huge variety of colors, including sheers, shimmers and glitters. I got one as a free with purchase with my last order (#11-Shiny Pin-up Pink – bright fuchsia pink shine) and turned around and in less than a week, ordered six more: #07 Shimmery Purple Red – raspberry with opalescent shimmer; #13 Reflex Miami Pink – sheer pink opalescent shimmer; #17 Shimmery Golden Beige – light caramel with opalescent shimmer; #19 Shimmery Black Currant – rose wine with opalescent shimmer; #49 Metallic Copper – dark bronze with a hint of shimmer; #50 Rose Petal – rich rose shine. So I was covered right? Wrong. I wear a lot of purple in the summer and found I was scrambling to find a shade for those fashion items. When I went to the store today, they did not have the Sephora gloss in a shade I liked. Phooey. But that didn’t stop me from grabbing two others that will work as well: # 21 Shiny Honey Purple – sheer grape shine; and the very evasive #24 Reflex Dazzling Violet – sheer purple opalescent shimmer (sold out online for over two months!). They weren’t exactly what I wanted, but they were still awesome. ($14.00)

LipstickSEPHORA COLLECTION Rouge Shine Lipstick: With a deep purple lipgloss by Sephora being out of reach, I decided to try the next best thing: a good lipstick. I found a great color with #47 Heartbreaker – Glossy – sheer royal purple. This lipstick is very similar to the shade of gloss I wanted, plus the lipstick is glossy as well and not your usual matte. I’m not anti-lipstick at all, just more if a fan of a gloss. I am in fact an odd bird because I am one who does love the mega high shine and stickiness you get from a gloss. I know, call me weird. But this great lipstick color certainly can be jazzed up with one of those high shine glosses I purchased as well. A great combo of endless possibilities. ($12.50)

Grey shadowSEPHORA COLLECTION Colorful Eyeshadow: I was going to BROWSE the store for a not-to-dark, definitely-not-silver eye shadow. While I was looking at the Sephora line of lip products, I couldn’t help but to glance over the eye shadow section. And, of course, Sephora has samples of every color of every item, so I began finger painting my hands and arms with shades of greys (no book title pun intended) till I actually found one I liked. The #58 Winter In London – Grey Shimmer was exactly what I wanted. Not too dark and smokey so it would look great for daytime blending. It had enough shimmer to make my eyes pop but not too much glitter to make me look like a stri… umm… girl wearing too much glitter. This will be an awesome color to play with! ($13.00)

SpongeSEPHORA COLLECTION The Perfectionist Makeup Sponge: Not too much to say about this purchase. With warmer temps coming soon, I wanted a makeup sponge so I could apply a nice thin coat of foundation and build when and where necessary. This sponge was on clearance, was the perfect size, and hell… it was purple too. ($7.00)

BrushSEPHORA COLLECTION Classic Mineral Powder Brush: This was an item I had been considering buying for some time, and since I was already at the store, I said why not. Being able to pick up, try, feel, touch all of the brushes made the decision to get this one easy. I knew I want a powder brush that wasn’t too big and too loose. It had to be somewhat dense to get to the areas I wanted with precision but still soft to gently apply either my mineral foundation or loose setting powder. Plus I wanted a flat–not rounded–top. This brush is perfect. The antibacterial synthetic bristles makes it perfect for picking up light or dense powders. Easy peasy! ($24.00)

Acqua di gioiaGIORGIO ARMANI Acqua di Gioia Hydrating Body Mist: ALERT! ALERT! TOTALLY UNEXPECTED PURCHASE! Of course when anyone goes to a makeup counter, they always sniff a few if the newest scents that have come out. Typically, I like to buy my fragrances in rollerballs. That way they don’t “spoil” and loose their original scent if I don’t use them up quick (and I never do!). None of the newest rollerballs tickled my fancy. In fact, many were heavy on rose notes which I am not a big fan of AT ALL! A couple were too spicy or woodsy for me in the summer months, a few others were similar to others I already had. Then I picked up this bottle. Without reading the description, I sniffed the bottle and I liked what I smelled. Then I sprayed it on my wrists. *GASP!* It was white! Yeah, not clear like other perfumes, it was watery white. Then I rubbed it in. Ooooo, it was silky! Totally fascinated and intrigued by this point, I read the bottle: hydrating body mist. So, it wasn’t drying like an alcohol based fragrance. It actually provided some moisture. So I decided to break out the iPhone and get some further deets. I discovered the scent “begins with a “mojito” inspired sensual blend of crushed mint leaves, warmed by brown sugar and mixed with the zest of Italian Limone. Then, feminine floral notes emerge with joyous hints of aquatic Jasmine, dew of Peony and subtle traces of pink pepper.” Now, we take those scents which I like, infuse it into an all-over moisturizing body mist, and you’ve got my newest love for the season! Yeay me! ($36.00)

Okay, okay, so I dropped some coin today. But I can easily say nothing I bought will go to waste. I’ve already used one of the glosses (broke it open in the car, what can I say?) and spritzed my skin twice with the Body Mist. I’m sure, depending on my attire tomorrow, most of the makeup items will get used as well. That’s the difference between a new makeup rookie and a glamour guru like myself. Makeup rookies make a purchase to try a new look. Glamour gurus make a beauty investment to enhance and accessorize an already established ensemble.

Of course, then there’s me. I just like to buy cool stuff!

I Gotta Have More….

27 May

More CowbellI‘ve come to the conclusion that when I get in the mood to write, I need to just grab my iPad and get jamming. I don’t think I will let the time lapse in between my posts like I used to, but I seem more eager to put what’s going on down on paper more frequently. Hence today’s post.
 
So, let’s attack the obvious: NO! I do not need more cowbell! Oh, trust me… there are times. And can we not listen to BOC sing “Don’t Fear The Reaper” without thinking this is the time! Actually, right now I don’t need more anything–cowbell, makeup, skin care, perfume, hair items, nail colors, jeans, purses, shoes, etc. Part of this realization is because I’m much more limited on free time than I used to be and don’t have time to ‘browse’. The other part is the fact that I am just swamped with “stuff”. Some I have bought, some I’ve reviewed, some have been gifts with purchase, others have just showed up and I honestly can’t remember why. Sad, I know, but true.
 
Yesterday was the first day in almost a year that I placed an order to Sephora. I’ve had more than enough “stuff” to get me by, but there are a few things that I really liked that I needed more of and could only get from from there. Plus there was a thing or two at the drug store that I needed more of. How could I need anything? I know…it’s sad but true x 2.
 
So what did I add to my already overstuffed, totally stocked makeup/skincare drawers this week? Let’s see…
 
Ole Henriksen EyesOLE HENRIKSEN Ultimate Eye Lift Kit – I had never purchased Ole’s cooling eye gel in the past, but it was a sample I got in a Sephora mini set several months ago. When I started working again a few months back, I noticed I showed my tiredness in my eyes before any other place. It was then I began using the Eye Gel and never looked back. Now I’m looking at an empty jar! It’s a must have for anyone who tends to get tired, puffy eyes after a long day (or even during allergy season!). The Eye Lift Kit actually gives you the best for day AND night: the cool roll-on gives your eyes relief with cucumber and calendula during the day while the nighttime gel acts like an eye mask with firming peptides. A must-have for all tired eyes! $35.00/set (Sephora)
 
Sephora eye pencilSEPHORA COLLECTION Waterproof 12HR Wear Jumbo Liner – Fact is, I bought three of these at my local Sephora store in December. They were bought as a “trial” since I love any makeup in a pencil. Pencils are convenient, easy to use, and simple to store. Plus I love to get them to a crisp point to “design” a look I like. Well, I really loved the colors I got last time (white, pink sparkle & black sparkle). They went on easy and lasted all day. Now that I have a job where my makeup look has to stay strong for 8+ hours, these easy to carry pencils give me just what I want. So, when time is critical in the morning and thinking hasn’t started without a cup of coffee, these pencils make it easy to create an all-day look with some color and pizzazz. In this purchase? I got myself silver glitter, lilac shimmer and grey glitter. A very nice start to a beautiful pencil pallet! $14.00/each (Sephora)
 
Milani Lip StainMILANI Power Lip Lasting & Moisturizing Lip Stain – Okay, confession: I have a serious lip product addiction. Pencils, stain pens, oh please… you’ve heard all this from me before. Well, on a “BOGO half price” sale a month or so ago, I thought I would try these since I love the theory of a moisturized stain but was disappointed no one had lived up to it in my eyes. Till now. This clicky “pen” dispenses the lip color into a built-in brush where you adjust how much or how little it goes on. It keeps your lips moist for a long time, and the stain continues even as the creaminess of the product dies down. Easily, I get 5+ hours out of the color! I like to carry a lightly frosted lip balm (like Nivea’s A Kiss of Pearly Shimmer Lip Care) to keep the moisture in without taking away the color from the stain as it starts to come off. I started off with Strawberry Sugar, Creamy Café and Cabaret Blend. Tried them, loved them, had to have them all. So this week I got Raspberry Tart, Macaroon, and Pink Lemonade. I think I’m totally covered for bold colored, long lasting lip colors this season. $6.49/ea (CVS)
 
Yes To GrapefruitYES TO GRAPEFRUIT Correct & Repair Brightening Facial Towelettes – The fact is…it’s getting warmer. My skin watches the weather even when I don’t, so the minute it senses 70 degrees or higher, my skin feels like it got kick started into oily mode. I know that when it comes to aging, oily skin is a blessing compared to dry skin. Still, it doesn’t help the fact that my face feels like wet plaster after about 9 hours in makeup on a warm day. I. Want. It. Off. Yes To Grapefruit towelettes are the ultimate in convenience. Plus, not only do they give you squeaky clean skin but they gently exfoliate and brighten your complexion. All that with natural ingredients and a cruelty free promise? “Yes” for us all! $6.49 (CVS)
 
Ok, see?…Just a few things to take my summer look to the next level. It’s really important to me that my skin feels and looks healthy and fresh during all seasons. This helps my makeup look natural and stays with me all day–rain or shine. Often, we have to live and learn, but at least people & bloggers like myself can point you in the right direction for some of the things you may be looking for. And if you do try any? Let me know what you think of them too! Sharing is caring!! LoL

Sassy Simplified (Dances with Wolves, part two)

14 May

So earlier this month I wrote about how I had a new job which was keeping me more busy than I’ve ever been before. My mind is calculating and occupied; my body is feeling a bit tired but balanced; and I’m doing something I find fun & exciting. I can still put my passion into writing but I can also interact with people which keeps me fresh and alive. What’s not to love!?!

Last time, I talked a lot about how I’ve simplified my skin care so I can still keep my face looking young and fresh with the least amount of time and products needed. Now, I’m going to talk a bit about makeup. I will admit, my makeup look is always changing since I tend to base my look and colors on my outfit and mood of the day. What is very important to me now? A look that will LAST! This girl ain’t got NO time to check her lashes, liner and lips every 60 minutes. I want to know my foundation isn’t sliding. I want to make sure my eyeliner isn’t running down on my cheeks. And I need a lip color that is light & easy to carry so I can touch up my lips on a whim without a mirror, keeping them fresh and soft. So what are a few of my necessities? Let’s look:

Foundation:
RimmelFoundationI have no time it bring a bag of goodies to work and touch my face up every few hours. I’m busy! Plus, isn’t that what us women really want: a no-brainer look that stays in place all day? After using many foundations, I really like how Rimmel London’s Stay Matte Liquid Mousse Foundation keeps my look in check–ALL DAY! I don’t get oil breakthroughs, no sliding, no blotchy spots. Just smooth, even coverage all day long. I can’t say I’ve been a big fan of many Rimmel products in the past, but this one has me hooked. $5.49

 

Eye Shadow:
LancomeES
Well, I have to admit, I flounder here a bit. It all depends on my mood. Sometimes I want a long lasting powder shadow when I want to blend different colors for a mesmerizing smoky look. Other times I like a long-lasting eye pencil that goes on quick without brushes but I can still add a bold pop of color. Then there are the lazy days…the days I want to sweep one cream color over my entire lid without thinking about blending, highlighting, contouring, fading or creasing all day. So that gives me a few different options with my choices–
Powder: Lancôme Color Design Sensational Effects Eye Shadow (55+ shades) $20.00
Pencil: Milani Shadow Eyez 12 HR Wear Eye Color Pencils (12 shades) $6.99
Cream: Maybelline Eye Studio Color Tattoo 24HR Cream Gel Shadow (10 shades) $6.99
If you have the time? Blend, mix, create! The looks are endless.
ColorTattoo

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liner:
LiquidLinerEyeliner used to be my nemesis. I could never find one that could line my top lids crisp, give my bottom lashes pop on the waterline, and keep them in place ALL DAY. Again, sometimes you have to pay more for what you want, and that’s what I found I had to do to get the long lasting look I wanted. They go on smooth, no running, completely waterproof & weatherproof!–
Pencil: Lancôme Le Stylo Waterproof Long Lasting EyeLiner w/smudger sponge (9+ shades) $27.00
Liquid Liner: Lancôme Artliner Precision Point EyeLiner, goes on with a fine sponge point to make your line as thick or as thin as you want. (9+ shades). $30.50
LancomePencil

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mascara:
MascaraMascara is an odd animal. No matter how happy you are with the one you have, you always have to try something new. And if you do try something new and aren’t happy with it? You are annoyed beyond words. I try the newest, latest and greatest whenever a drugstore brand mascara comes out. I have to say there are a few select ones that I have been pleased with. But when it comes to a mascara that gives me fabulous looking, long, lush, lashes? I always go back to my ultimate favorite. It’s super water resistant, doesn’t flake, no under eye smudging and coats and separates each lash. They look so fab, I think they almost look fake. (Hence the name!) Seriously, isn’t that what we all want? And I don’t mind paying a bit more for just that! Which is why I love Benefit Cosmetics “They’re Real!” Mascara. $23.00

 

Blush:
BlushYou don’t need a ton of blush to make your look natural. And I found very quick you don’t have to spend a lot either. There are some great powder and cream blushes that will go the distance without breaking your bank. And some?…no brush needed. Especially my favorite:
Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blush. This gel formula lets you dot and smooth right where you want to make your cheeks pop without going a bit heavier as you could with a brush blush. The variety of ten shades are smooth and buildable, if you are looking for a more dramatic look. $7.99

 

Lips:
CovergirlOkay, honestly in this department, I’ve got nothing. See, we all have our vice. Some have Oreos, others ice cream. Some have salt & vinegar chips, others have Ring Dings. Me? Well, I have all those too, but when it comes to makeup, I can’t get enough lip products. Seriously, I have scrubs, balms, butters, stains, creams, lipsticks, colored glosses, clear glosses, the lust just goes on. Honestly, I have no favorite. I’m trying to think, though, what you will ALWAYS find in my purse. It takes a “special” product to always be in there, regardless of outfit choice of the day. That’s easy: For Goodness Grape lip tint in Strawberry Sugar Shimmer ($7.00); Buxom Full-On Lip Polish in “Bronze Glow” ($19.00); Covergirl Lipslicks Smoochies Lip Balm in “Only U” ($5.99); Milani Brilliant Shine Lip Gloss in “Mauve Fetish” ($5.49)

ForGoodnessGrape

 

 

 

 

 

So, it’s true–the Sassy working woman isn’t as simplified in her makeup routine as her skin care routine, but I am more aware. I am more aware of the type of products I use that will last the whole day with few or no touch ups. I need quality items that will make it through all kinds of conditions: hot, cold, rainy, rushed, busy, quiet, stressed, chaotic, hilarious and just plain fun. Finding the right products has taken some time, and I’m sure I’ll be looking for more in the future. But for now? I am very content with my edgy, chic, up-to-date look that doesn’t require a ton of money, time or effort. Just what a stylish nine-to-five tattooed rockstar needs!!

image

Old School vs. New Math?

28 Apr

imageIt might be getting close to the hot wedding season, but my reference to “something old” and “something new” actually has to do with my glamour ensemble, not bridal must haves. See, a few things in my daily routine and extensive closet are new items that I have recently discovered and have fallen in love with. Others are tough, tried and true, and have been in my glamour routine for some time. We all know it’s nice to find new items that exceed even our favorites, but there are just some things we cannot do without. What are yours? Here are a few if my new favorites and classic classic loves:

Something old…
imageMaybelline’s Eye Studio Master Drama Eye Liner – Okay, this product hasn’t been around forever and, in fact, compared to other liners, it’s kinda sorta new. However, many other variations of liners–pencils, liquids, gels, loose pigments–have come onto the scene very recently. I think I bought this for the first time about three years ago, and liked how it’s creamy yet long lasting formula had the stay power to get me through the day. It’s stated 16 hour wear holds true for me. Doesn’t irritate my eyes, no skipping or smudging. Even now, when it comes to my bottom lid waterline? It’s the only product I use. And although it comes in six shades, Midnight Master is my go-to color no matter what. (What can I say? I’m a black liner kind of girl!) $7.99

Something new…
imageLancôme Paris Artliner Precision Point Eyeliner – I will admit: I was never a liquid liner lover. I could not master that damn little paintbrush. An art student I was not. Then, about a year ago, a Lancôme representative gave me a makeover at Macy’s and showed me how to use all of these new products as well as explain the benefits to me. She gave me a dramatic caterer look with the Artliner and let me practice in the store. I left with three different colors, although Noir gets the most use. The foam-tipped brush makes it almost impossible to mess up, the formula dries fast, and lasts all day. Rich, deep color that glides on smooth and effortlessly. $30.50

Something Old…
imageTree Hut Shea Almond & Honey Body Butter – Anyone who follows my blog knows I’ve been a fan of this moisturizer for a very long time. In the cold, dry, winter months, this extra rich creamy moisturizer helps to penetrate into the skin for long-term hydration as well as protect the surface of the skin from drying elements. I love it most for how it keeps my feet smooth and soft avoiding dry calluses, plus it keeps my legs from getting dry and catching on delicate fabrics. I always have one jar in the house…right now I three in various rooms!! $5.08

Something new…
imagePure Romance Body Dew in Pink Cupcake – Okay, don’t laugh. I’m working the local tattoo expo a few weeks back when I decided to take a stroll and check out the other artists at the convention. All of a sudden I am approached by a woman in pink feathers asking I’d she could demonstrate her oil spray to give my tattoos added shine. She picks the Pink Cupcake scent and sprays my lotus side tattoo. I really had no chance to protest it happened so fast. But I noticed immediately that I: 1) loved the tasty scent and; 2) it was moisturizing but not a sticky oily feeling. Infused with pure almond oil, this product (often sold in an adult home-party setting) was something I actually fell in love with. I get the convenience of a light, moisturizing oil in a spray with a sexy smell that I really like. It’s not overpowering, it doesn’t conflict with my other perfumes, locks moisture into the skin, and has the benefits of pure almond oil. I’ll be using this after my showers when my skin needs a nice, light coat of moisturizer. (I did choose to pass on the available whips and fuzzy cuffs at this time.) $18.00

Something Old…
imageSephora Collection Waterproof Jumbo Liner 12HR Wear – Sephora jumbo eye pencils have been around ever since I bought my first one in NYC almost 10 years ago. Although they are called “liners”, their array of 28 different colors allows you to use them as a highlighting pencil, a contouring pencil or a liner. These pencils go one soft without tugging, and allow you a bit of time to smudge and design before they set. I love the fact there are mattes, frosts and high glitters so you can mix and match for a sexy, all-day look. Stays put, no running, no raccoon eyes. Simple, fun must-haves in hot colors! $14.00

Something New…
imageFor Goodness Grape Mineral Eye Shadows – I’ve always been a fan of loose mineral eyeshadows. Such a fan that my entire top drawer in my bathroom vanity is probably filled with over 100 different colors by various companies. When my girl at a For Goodness Grape said she was adding a mineral makeup line to her already fabulous selection of lip balms, scrubs & tints…I HAD to try them! Without fail, Lisa had put together a collection of her favorite new colors–bold and neutrals–for me to try. The minute I put the shade “Pearl” as my highlighter, I knew I was in love! The formulas are easy to work with, are fun to “foul” (put on wet) and blend easily to get the desired look and/or color you want. The shadows are a nice addition to For Goodness Grape’s already fabulous line of American made, boutique inspired beauty products. I use at least one FGG product every day, and now with these great, jazzy, affordable mineral products, I can see that number going up! Eyeshadows, $6.50

There are a few things that I have always on hand for my beauty routine, and now I’ve added a few more newer things that I just can’t live without. I seriously encourage you to give some if these a try and see if they make your “gotta love ’em, gotta have ’em” list. You may make a few of them ‘must haves’ as well!