Tag Archives: L’Oreal Paris

A Fancy Face With Drugstore Finds

21 May

Anyone who reads fashion magazines, glamour spreads, even blogs may wonder sometimes if any REALLY good makeup can be found at your local drug store. It can be very disheartening to see a killer shade of lipstick on a model in a magazine only to find out that one tube costs over $25. I remember when I was a teen, if I spent more than $5 on ANY makeup product, it was “high end”. Wow… times have changed. I decided to put aside the samples and products that I had gotten from some of the higher end beauty stores or at the cosmetic counter of my local exclusive department store to see if I could get a SLAMMIN’ look for a more reasonable price.

I went through my vanity to find things that I mainly use that could be close to or even equal in quality for less expensive products in my local drug store or retail store for the main products that I use. Now, let me state for the record — I have a TON of makeup. In fact, if I wasn’t involved in what I do as a writer, I’m sure an intervention would have been discussed. I can’t help it if I get products to test and try, get coupons for free items, and I get random products in the mail from brands that follow me on my social medias. But when I did some math in my head, I realized a lot of people don’t have access to many of the things I have. So, my quest began: could I get a great natural and/or glamour appearance with products from my local drugstore without breaking the bank? A full face—from foundation to lip gloss–for a high-quality, almost red-carpet look? Hmmm… Let’s see how I did…

Foundation: There are a ton out there, any glamourista knows that. The problem with foundations is that everyone wants something different from them. Some people need a formula for dry skin, one for oily skin, some like mineral liquids, and others like a powder foundation. Finding one really depends on what your skin type is like. We will just take my skin as a basis for this test. I have super sensitive skin (thank you, red hair) and can go from dry to oily in a matter of 24 hours. After being at The Makeup Show this past weekend, I kept hearing about professional makeup artists using NYX Cosmetics’s “Total Control Drop Foundation”. Okay, wait—these world famous MUAs who have access to ANY brand at ANY cost are picking a drugstore foundation to have in their cosmetic kits? I had to know why. I stopped by the brand booth at the show and talked to two fabulous brand representatives from NYX. They agreed—makeup artists from all over are carrying their Total Control Drop Foundation with them. Why? Well, I bought one to find out. I will say, it IS pretty awesome. It has a dropper so you can get just the amount you need without oversaturating your skin. It is light, buildable, and didn’t irritate my sensitive skin at all. Available in 24 shades, it wasn’t hard to find one that matched my very pale skin easily. I like the fact you can “add” things to it so your skin can get an even better look: a color adjuster, a mattifier or even a primer. I was super excited to find this product at The Makeup Show! A great deal for $14.

Setting Powder: Setting powders, for some of us “old schoolers” remind us about when they were skin-toned (not mine), turned into a shiny cookie from the talc, and gave us a nice orange glow. I was over that one fast. I just gave up on the powder thing for MANY years. Then… ta-da! I received a free sample of this new, high end HD powder. It wasn’t a pressed powder–it was loose. Not very easy to carry with me. Not to mention, it was white! Who wears white powder? After reading the details and practicing its application, I came to love it fast! It was translucent when applied to the skin and set my makeup perfectly. I bought a jar and, honestly, to this date, I still have it—it lasts forever! Then, about six months ago, I received an item in a monthly subscription box. It was NYX’s High Definition Finishing Powder. Yeah, there’s that NYX brand again! I put it on my vanity and let it set. One day, when laziness was at its max, I realized I needed an all over evenness to my skin and grabbed NYX’s powder since it was close by and tossed it in my purse to apply at work. Wow…was I amazed! A big brush swiped over the powder compact with a light dusting all over my makeup gave me a soft, flawless look. I was very surprised! I was even more surprised at the price. It ended up being 1/3 of the cost of my high end brand. And it did the same thing. Having this powder in a compact made it easier to carry with me as well. It has now become a staple in my purse. A fabulous price at $10.00

Blush: With my skin being very pale, I do not need a lot of blush to get a rosy hue to my cheeks. In fact, there are times when a pinch with my fingers right on my cheekbones gives me enough color for an hour or so. (That’s a nice trick to remember when your face needs a slight glow.) While I was flipping through a doctor’s office magazine, I saw this ad featuring a beautiful model with gorgeous cheeks. I was shocked when I saw what she had used… e.l.f. Blush in Fuchsia Fusion. I didn’t think this redhead could pull of a color like that but I wanted to try. Wow, I was surprised! I certainly did not need a lot of color, but the shade was gorgeous. Just a tiny sweep on my cheeks upwards was the perfect color I needed. Although it looks a little bold in the package, it gives me a healthy glow. And a little goes a long way. A great find for only $3

Eye Shadow: This is another personal preference. I know people who despise crayon colors, some who love loose mineral colors, and others who only wear natural colored pallets. In my career, I am busy and free time is limited. Because of that, I want—and need—an eye shadow that will last all day. Now me, specifically? I want a shadow that is glittery, shimmery and a long-time wear power. After seeing ads (and with a coupon in hand), I set out to get myself a L’Oreal Infallible 24HR Eye Shadow color. This easy to apply creamy shadow can be put on with your finger or even a tight brush (like a concealer brush) for more precise application. If you want to combine two or three shades, use a brush to get the colors you like then blend, blend, blend to get the look you want. Keeping it simple, I chose to get the color “Silver Sky”. I used my finger to dot, dot, dot then blend. I loved it! Yes, it wore all day. Yes, it was super water resistant. No, it did not crease. I was just what this busy girl needed! Over the years, I have managed to collect about 12 different shades that I like to wear alone or with other shades. When I wear L’Oreal Infallible 24HR Eye Shadow, I don’t stress when I can’t check it. I know it is fine. $8

Now there are your powder shadow girls. That’s okay too. I have about 12… or 70… different shades of loose mineral shadows. There are some very high quality pure mineral shadows on Etsy (like Notyce Beauty & Deviant Cosmetics) but in the stores, I’m pretty picky. A while back, while wandering around a discount store, I found a trio of colors that I loved. They had natural, soft, and subtle looks but I wanted something bold. I grabbed Wet ‘n Wild’s Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio in “Spoiled Brat”. Since I don’t use many pressed eye colors, I was hesitant to invest a lot of money for just a few purse shadows. I could not, however, pass this trio up. Of course, other color combos were present and each trio had great shades of pressed shadows for just about anyone. Since loose minerals are hard to carry around with me, this pressed trio of shadows was perfect to give me a few fun colors at a fab price. $3

Mascara: Probably out of all makeup that is on the market, mascaras are the hardest for me to settle on. Every new one that comes out says it is better than the last. And I fall for it every time. There are also ones that I have loved that have just disappeared. UGH! I am often given mascaras to try from different brands to test and only a few times have I flat out not liked them. But there are also very few that I have loved enough to buy again. When it comes to drugstore mascaras, there are so many that I literally get overwhelmed when I go looking. I am not able to try any of those before buying and am afraid of getting something that will irritate my eyes or just doesn’t look good. I actually made a list of what I wanted with a mascara and what I didn’t then went on to various company websites to see if they had something close to my desires. After I chose my brush style, formula, color and longevity, I was able to narrow it down to three mascaras. The first one was difficult to find. It was out of stock in many stores. The second one seemed to do just about everything. I’ve been wearing it for a week and have had no eye irritation, smudging or difficulty in getting it all off at bedtime. It was not that expensive and I had a coupon too. Would I buy it again? Not sure… we’ll see. But am I wearing mainly now? Yes, yes I am. Every day. I like the results I am getting L’Oreal ParisVoluminous® Extra-Volume Collagen Mascara. A decent deal for $8

Eyeliner – Pencil: I am a child of the 80’s. Back then, your pencil eyeliner was awesome if you got it really sharp then heated it with a lighter. Looking back?…ugh, what was I thinking. Eyeliners have come really far since then. There are pencil liners that will stay strong on your waterline without having to melt them on. The problem is that most of them are super high end and are not cheap. One summer on vacation, I realized I left my pencil liner home. I got a little paranoid so I headed out to the nearest drug store to try and find something that could hold me over. Thanks to a recommendation from a customer, I decided to try NYX’s Slim Eye Pencil in Black Glitter. It was a little sparkly but not a ton, just enough. It sharpened easy, glided on without tugging and didn’t smudge at all. I liked it so much I went back and got a few other colors. I really like using the glitter liner on the waterline and then I nbetween the lashes with a thin line of the NYX Silver liner (or other bold color) underneath. A very chic look at a very reasonable price! $3.50

Eyeliner – Liquid: I have only been using liquid liner for a little over two years. It didn’t matter how many YouTube tutorials I read, the “winged liner” look wasn’t flying my way. Thanks to the help of a couple of my friends, I think I have finally achieved the look. It’s not always perfect and takes some time, but I can get there. The liquid liners that I first started practicing with were more than forgiving. I could make a small mistake and be able to fix it without much effort. The only bad thing was that usually meant that the liner didn’t stay as “crisp” as I wanted it to. If I wanted the winged liner look that day, I would have to use the liquid I had then go over it with a pencil or wet shadow. That didn’t always work so well. I was finally given some recommendations for a good pen liner but it was pretty steep in price. Especially since I wasn’t a pro at it. I tried it and was beyond thrilled with it, but that price made me wonder if there was any drugstore liquid liner with the same stay power. Fortunately I found one that was actually BETTER than the expensive pen I was using. Wet n Wild H2O Proof Liquid Eyeliner has a stay power like I have never seen before. It isn’t a pen (which is my only disappointment) but the applicator has a pen-shaped felt tip. It goes on smooth and gentle and stays ALL DAY! There is no crying or smudging or even wiping this off. Once it is on, it’s on! Now that has its disadvantages if you are a newbie to the liquid liner game. If you make a mistake, you need to fix it FAST or you will need to take it all off and start again. And to take it off completely takes the right products and a substantial amount of time. I find it is best if you give the applicator a blot on a tissue (hold it on an angle–don’t press the tip!) and go from there. That way you will have less product that can get unruly. You may even want to find a super thin, long handled brush to apply it with. (Instead of a makeup store, look for a good super-thin paintbrush at a craft store! Just make sure you clean it after each use so it won’t lose its shape. This gem is remarkably inexpensive for $4.

Lip liner: The main purpose of a lip liner is to keep your lip color from feathering into the fine lines around your lips. A good way to keep those lines from happening is to use your favorite eye cream around your lips morning and night. Eye cream is supposed to prevent you from getting lines around your eyes, right? So why not do the same thing for your lips. Find a lip liner pencil that isn’t too soft but that doesn’t tug when you apply it. I found that Rimmel London’s Lasting Finish 1000 Kisses Lip Liner was a great find for the cost. Available in 11 shades, this gem is perfect for giving you the perfect pout in a color that matches your lipstick or gloss. The long-wearing formula doesn’t transfer and can stay put for up to 8 hours. Not to mention, if you use a long wearing lip color, you want it to make sure it “stays in the lines” and a liner helps with just that. If you want, you can even use it as a long wearing lip color by itself by filling your lips completely with your favorite shade. And at its low price, you can pick all the colors that you love. $4

Lip Color: When it comes to an all over lip color, everyone has their personal preference to the kind they like. Some like pencils, others like regular lipsticks, many like liquid lip colors, some prefer stains. Whichever one you like best, you are sure to find something reasonably priced in your local drugstore. It might just be a case of trying different ones that give you the formula and colors you like. One little gem that I found is made by NYX called Epic Ink Lip Dye. Don’t let the name fool you. It’s not really a “dye” or even a stain. It is more like a liquid lipstick that goes on smooth and lasts a long time without any transfer. The colors are bold and give you a “notice me!” look. There are 12 shades to choose from in the current collection and run about $7.

If you want something that is fairly long wearing but is more of a gloss with a good color, don't pass by L’Oreal Paris’s 8 HR Le Gloss. I've been wearing this gloss for well over five years now and it is still the one I grab when I want long lasting, creamy color that hydrates. Available in 20 shades that include mattes, frosts and shimmers, this stay-put gloss doesn't feather or fade. It is a bit sticky which is not appealing for some but for someone who has dry, chapped lips (like me) they may appreciate that kick of moisture. You can find that in your local drugstore for $10.

One other little goodie that I recently discovered is a neat Lip tint by e.l.f.. Don’t let the color in the package deter you. It actually changes colors with the chemistry of your lips. It is moisturizing because it is infused with shea butter to give your lips some great hydration. It comes in three hues and can be put on at any time … even without a mirror! I had originally gotten Perfect Pink when it first came out but I thought, for a redhead, it was a little too bright for me. Then they released Perfect Berry and I was thrilled! It gives me that nice, rich, shiny light burgundy hue that looks great on my lips and matches my hair. They also released it in Perfect Peach which I am sure would also look good especially to match an outfit with warmer or neutral colors. e.l.f. offers these “Perfect” lip tints for $6.

It can be difficult to select a makeup item from a drugstore simply from a magazine ad or even from a recommendation from a friend. Not everyone wants the same things so without being able to try it out for a while, it’s hard to know if it is the right product for you. I tell my readers to do their research: read online reviews about the product itself at their website, search online for public reviews, and try sites like Influenster that cover all kinds of products—makeup and more. Use these to make your decision but definitely ask the drugstore if you purchase it and find it is not the product for you that you can return it without a hassle. This should be able to narrow your choices down quite a bit and take the worry out of possibly losing money on a product that is not for you.

So Sassy wants to know… what is YOUR must-have drugstore makeup product? How long have you been using it? And of course, why do you keep buying it? I’d love to share your thoughts on your favorite products in a future article. Leave your comments below so I can do some research on the ones you love too!

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 5

6 Jul

MakeupClipartYeah, it was bound to happen. I missed my post yesterday. I had a REALLY good reason though: it was the World Cup final! USA! USA! USA! The game was awesome, the win was fabulous and the beverages around me were tiring. Which means we won–and I fell asleep. I hang my head in shame.

30DaysSo I need to catch up on yesterday’s post first then do today’s later. Let’s start with “Day 5: Day Make Up Look”. I wish I could say this was simple, but since most of my days are spent at the tattoo shop, I kind of have to have a quick and easy yet edgy look. If I have some extra time, I can get a little more involved with colors, play with different eye looks, lip shades, stuff like that. But I have had to do this for a while now so I’m perfecting the “just fell out of bed” respectable day face. The key is to have a bold look that consists of go-to colors that go with ANYTHING. It took a while to get the right products together: products that were easy to apply, would last all day, would not fade or run, and could work in any weather. A lot of testing occurred. A lot of products were tried. But, success happened! We found a throw-on, go-to daytime look.

Let’s talk a little about what you really want to do first before you perfect a day look. Skin care is really important so no matter how much or how little time you have, washing your face is important. A mild exfoliant in your wash will also remove the dead skin cells that surfaced during the night. If you don’t have a gentle exfoliating cleanser, put a little bit of fine coffee grounds or white sugar into your cleanser. Pat your face dry. Use a light day serum under a gentle moisturizer. Make sure one of them has an SPF of 30 or more. Then, according to your skin type, select a foundation that makes your skin look smooth and even. Then you can move on to your day look makeup.

So here is what I have found to put on for an easy, go with everything, casual Day Make Up Look:

* L’Oreal Studio Secrets Color Corrector Primer in green
* Maybelline FIT ME!® Shine-Free Foundation
* LA Minerals High Definition Diamond Veil
* e.l.f. Cosmetics Blush in Fuchsia Fusion
* New York Color (NYC) Trio Eye Shadow in Skyrise Steel
* Too Faced Cosmetics Perfect Eyes Eyeliner in Black
* Dior Diorshow Iconic Mascara in Rich Black
* Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Lip Pencil in Ozone
* Buxom Full On Lip Polish in Gabby

There we go. A few products that gives me a simple yet slammin’ day look. What’s nice about these products is that some of them can transition into a very vibrant evening look as well with just a few additional enhancements. That is something you may want to keep in mind if time is minimal to go from a day to night look is something you do frequently.

With Day 5 of “30 Days of Beauty” behind us, you have what my favorite day look products are. It is important to have products that are staples in your vanity that you are comfortable wearing, have mastered their application, and can wear with anything. That sets you up for an easy, stylish look you can start your day with…. any day!!
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It’s Not Winter… Yet.

23 Nov

imageThe calendar says November. Last time I checked, winter started sometime in December. And Christmas came AFTER that. So even though the leaves all are off the trees, my local stores have their decorations up, balsam wreaths are for sale, and Santa is at the Mall, I’m sticking with all my might not to lose sight of the fact it is fall. My favorite season. And I’ll enjoy it while I can.

Now, the fact remains we have already had about an inch of snow fall outside my back door, my furnace is on, firewood is being delivered this week, and all of my boots and sweaters have been brought out of storage. It did get cold. Really cold. Really fast. But I still see my lawn, I still see fallen leaves, and I still see my pumpkins on my front step. In my mind?… autumn is still around. And we can enjoy a few transition things to keep us looking and feeling our best before we look like an Eskimo–24/7.

So what are a few things I am glamming up on before the Arctic chill officially hits? Check out these pre-winter but still fall goodies that I’m finding are a must have right now:

imagePaul Mitchell Super Skinny Serum – Snowing or not, we have to acknowledge that furnaces across America are kicking on. And this, in turn, is causing hair–my hair!!–to get dry and frizzy. When I got a sample of this clear wonder, I figured I would give it a shot. The only thing that concerned me was the fact that the bottle stressed to only use ONE PUMP into my hands, rub together, and run through hair. I’m like, “Glamourista PUH-LEEZE! I’ve got hair longer than a horses tail!” One? Okay…sure. We will play by rules. So I put one dollop in my hands and ran it through. And yes!…. one just about did it. I added a little more to the ends just to make sure they got coated too. But I must say a little does goes a long way so use what it says! It seals moisture into each strand making it shiny and keeping the frizzies in check. Perfect for the weather right now! (Sassy gets hers from paulmitchell.com)

imageForGoodnessGrape Gingerbread Lip Balm & Sugar Scrub – I love the scents of all of the late year holidays. I am the only one in the house, however, who is a big fan of gingerbread. I can buy it and no one else in the house eats it. Perfect. Awesome. Proper. When fall hits, I love all the seasonings associated with the season. I burn candles, mix oils & bake breads and other delicious delectables with these sweet spices. So if I can burn them and eat them, why not wear them if the opportunity arises? So I do! ForGoodnessGrape is my go-to resource when my lips begin to get cranky with the seasons changing. With a flavor for any holiday, season or mood, they always have something to keep me and my lips happy. I use the sugar scrub to gently exfoliate the chapped, dead skin on my lips then replenish and seal in moisture. Their gingerbread combo is one of my favorites this time of year. And yes, my lips certainly like it too!! (Sassy lands these goodies at forgoodnessgrape.com)

imageL’Oreal Paris Infallible 24 HR Eye Shadow in “Bottomless Java” and “Iced Latte” – Im not sure why but I wear very little warm colored clothing in the spring and summer months compared to what I wear in the fall and winter. I probably only have two pairs of brown flats and one pair of brown sandals. That’s it. But for fall and winter? I have at least two pair of high boots, a pair of suede over-the-knee boots, and at least two-three pair of shorter, combat style boots. I wear more brown and ivory sweaters than any other color (after black of course.) If I’m going to rock some slammin’ style in warm color tones, I need some makeup to match. The Infallible Shadow line from L’Oreal has always been a favorite of mine and they’ve even added more colors! Now I have two great warm shades to compliment my look when brown earth-tones make their way out of my closet. Because these two eye shadows can really make your eyes POP! with the right mascara and liner, I suggest keeping your lip shade natural with a hint of clear shine or a gentle nude long-wearing gloss. You won’t need to worry about your eye shadow, though. Any Infallible shade from L’Oreal will stay put. All. Day. Long. Epic! (Sassy grabs these eyeshadows at CVS.com)

imageMacy’s Material Girl Kurt Combat Booties – Speaking of boots, I have my own personal theory about boots and changing seasons: boots should get higher only when snow rises and the temps fall. So, when the weather is 30 degrees on Monday and 55 by Friday, lower booties are just fine for now. And I have my fair share. Some are leather, some are suede. Some are grey, some black, some brown, even some taupe. If I have the outfit, I have a pair of boots to match. I have a wonderful pair of black suede combat booties that I have had forever. They fit great, comfortable as heck. But I wanted another pair with no heel height in leather just for a change up now and then. This was a well thought out purchase: reading reviews, checking style, and considering comfort feedback. Then, the day I went to order them, I got an online code for 25% off. Score!!! I love how they fit and feel. Nice support, true to size, and comfortable for all day wear. Great find for the fashion closet that was very reasonably priced. (Yup, Sassy grabbed this gem at Macys.com)

image“Dolce” by Dolce & Gabbana – I don’t know. I’m just one of those girls that feels she needs to start a new season with at least one new fragrance. This year, I did it a bit backwards I think. I ordered a new fragrance for fall that caught my nose (and those of my fellow workers) almost immediately. It had a dark, alluring, almost naughty edge to it. It was deep, and honestly, that’s not usually me. But this one worked. So I gave it a try. Well, I’m still loving it, don’t get me wrong, but I think it’s a bit too heavy too early. So I’m backing that scent up in the drawer and getting a new fragrance that I got as a sample in my boot order. Dolce & Gabbana is one of those companies that usually always delivers an appealing scent to me, for both men and women. This one didn’t let me down either. It is fresh, feminine, elegant and youthful with significant notes of white flowers and white amaryllis. This scent can be worn all year round since it doesn’t really reflect the season, but more the person wearing it. The sample sold–I will be adding this rollerball to my collection this week! (This was a great deal for Sassy at Nordstrom.com since they NEVER charge shipping!)

So, you see? There is room in between seasons where adjustments can be made to your fashion and glamour collection. In addition to adding a few new things, take this transitional time to go through storage to sort out your next seasonal collection of clothes. Try them on, ask yourself how much you wore that piece last year. Once or less? Put it away in a box for a consignment shop. Check their condition too. You may love that glitter Guess sweater beyond words, but if it’s faded, has a hole or two and missing sequins, you’ll have to realize it is only being held together by memories…you may have to say goodbye. It’s okay. Really, it is. Plus, we know fashion: As soon as that new Vince Camuto ombré sweater catches your eye… you’ll forget all about that other one.

Fall divider

Enjoy the rest of your fall!

“Now Why Don’t (S)he Write?” ~ Dances with Wolves, 1990

22 Apr

imageForgive me readers for I have dimmed. My writing is not as bright as it once was. In fact, it’s not even lit up. I have been negligent in my sharing of stories and experiences, and for that I am sorry. I could give you a list of endless excuses–my fish died; dropped my iPad in the toilet; a shark bit my arms while scuba diving; I bumped my head and thought I was Molly Ringwald for six months (look her up if you have to). You, my loyal readers, deserve nothing but the truth from me. And you shall get it.

I haven’t been writing because…

...I got a job.

Now, I’ll explain this a bit. I haven’t worked a 9-5 job in years. Years! Health and family issues had prevented me to hold a regular office job that allowed me to be flexible with my appointments, my health, my schedule. Then, on a whim, a friend of mine said he needed some help at his “office” and I said I could just be the missing link they were looking for. And I think I was. I’ve been there almost four months now and love it. I don’t get too tired, I love the people I work with, it keeps me out if trouble (haha!), and I’ve found an industry where I feel I’ve found my niche. So what am I doing? You may want to sit down for this…

I am the manager at my favorite tattoo shop!

Yeah, shocking to some I know. The little quiet girl in the back of business math class is happily working with a shop of men, watching some if the most artistic pieces of work get tattooed on some great people. Now don’t confuse my fashion and glamour art with tattoo art. I can match a top, jeans, shoes and accessories to make any girl turn heads. But, I admit, I can’t draw a tree with a crayon. No art class ability at all. That’s ALL my daughter. I know that creating and designing in the fashion and glamour industry is an art, and I guess that does help me somewhat in my job. But to put an idea from mind, to paper, to body, with ink is nothing I would ever attempt. Ever. And for that my artists are happy.

With this new endeavor in my life, what could I possibly have to write about? Oh, let me tell you, I have something MAJOR to write about: convenience. I have hardly ANY free time now. I need skin care that is easy but works good–just a couple of products that do A LOT. My skin is more tired, lacking elasticity, uneven toned. Plus, now I need to find makeup that goes the distance–can be applied quick & easy, doesn’t fade, won’t smudge or flake. Seems like a heavy order, but with how busy us women are nowadays is that REALLY asking too much?

So, with that tall order, I have managed to condense and simplify my day and night skin care routine. And, I have to say, I’m pretty happy with how my skin is looking. I’ll admit, early on in my first month of working, I looked like hell. I seriously thought if I was going to look as old as I really was (haha!) this J-O-B thing might need to be reconsidered. But I readjusted some of the products I used, got things smooth and even, and had my skin not looking as tired as I really was! Now you ask, “What did she add? What is she using?” Well here are a few of the things that I have found in regards to skincare that I now use quickly and faithfully:

20140422-001744.jpg**Lancôme Paris Bi-Facial Double Action Eye Makeup Remover**
Fact: I do NOT have time to mess around trying to get off my waterproof, smudge proof, 24 hour stay put eye makeup. I want to wipe a cotton ball across my eyes and quickly get off everything without having to scrub like I’m cleaning a burnt frying pan. Can’t. Be. Bothered. The Bi-Facial Eye Makeup Remover gets it ALL off. One cotton ball, done. That’s what I need, that’s what I want. $28.

20140422-001752.jpg**Lancome Créme Radiance Clarifying Cream-to-Foam Cleanser**
I’m not on a Lancome bandwagon here, but I got a sample of this cleanser when I bought my eye makeup remover and fell in love with it immediately. Ever since I had to deal with oily skin for many years, I grew to appreciate that feeling of tight, clean skin. Now that my skin is more normal, that feeling usually indicates a harsh cleanser that can be drying to the skin. Not the Créme Radiance. It’s a light, naturally scented creamy cleanser that lathers up easy. Wash the face and neck, rinse it off, and you will notice immediately it feels free of all nasties. It cleans deep without drying. It’s quick too. One wash and rinse and dirt and makeup of all kinds are gone. Easy peasy. $25.

20140422-001759.jpg**L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Texture Perfector Serum Concentrate**
Serums are big–HUGE!–right now. There is one out there for any and ever skin problem you may have. You can pay an exorbitant amount of money for a big-named serum that does it all or spend a little money on several different serums that may do what you want. There are a lot of different options. I found, myself, that what I really wanted was something that helped reduce the appearance of large pores, fine lines, uneven skin texture and tone. After a magazine article caught my eye and a bit of some online research, I found this product really did what I needed it to. What’s even better? It did it all at a price that didn’t break the bank. ONE drugstore-level product that did show an improvement in my skin after a short period of time. Bingo. $24.99.

20140422-001806.jpg**L’Oreal Paris Youth Code™ Day Lotion SPF 30**
Okay, so when it comes to hydration and SPF day protection, I’m sticking to the Youth Code line. I believe these two products compliment each other and work together to give you the best results. The Day Lotion is potent but lightweight and oil-free. It protects your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays, plus boosts the skin’s regeneration process to bring the young, healthy skin to the surface. I hate a heavy lotion feel on my skin, and this does not give me that feeling at all. And my sensitive skin has no issues with it either. Love it. $24.99

20140422-001821.jpg**Say Yes to Blueberries Deep Wrinkle Night Cream**
It has become obvious (or if you didn’t know, you do now!) that wrinkles originate from dry, dehydrated skin. It is essential that those of us with oily skin hydrate our skin and bodies–inside and out–and those of us with dry skin hydrate AND moisturize. Even though my skin can be oily one day and dry the next, the fact remains that it is very sensitive and products with “funky” ingredients don’t always make my skin happy. The Say Yes To line of products isn’t just natural, “it’s super natural”! Each product they produce is at least 95% natural so it would be safe in your body as well as on it. Earth friendly, the blueberry Night Cream has ingredients such as blueberries for anti-oxidants, Wild Acacia to tighten skin and reduce wrinkle depth and Cupuacu Seed Butter to richly hydrate and plump the skin. Let the cream do all the work naturally while I sleep! $19.99

20140422-001814.jpg**Ole Henriksen Ultimate Lift Eye Gel**
So now I’m working during the day. I’m looking at smartphones, iPads, laptops, TVs, appointment books, you name it. At the end of the day my eyes are TIRED! Ole’s Eye Gel is just what the doctor ordered to use before bed. This incredibly soothing and firming eye gel contains calendula and cucumber which reduces puffiness and dark circles when used regularly. My peepers are thankful for this little beauty right before bed and first thing in the morning. $38.

There. I think I made up for a little bit of lost time with this post, yes? Simply stated, I have managed to find six products that I can use morning and night that keeps my skin fresh, smooth and young looking. The routine isn’t complicated, the products last a long time and won’t empty your pockets either. So if you are looking for a bare minimum skin care routine that will continue to keep you looking your best, I highly recommend checking out these fabulous products.

Now, if you will excuse me, I am off to bed. Visions of tattoo machines will buzz in my head. (Plus that damn new alarm clock sure does ring early!)
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My October Fab Finds…..

12 Nov

It is mid November and we are officially in to the full Fall effect. Temperatures are getting cooler, colors are getting warmer, and Old Man Winter is knocking on the door. Before you know it, there will be Christmas and holiday ads on TV and decorations in the stores. Oh wait… that’s already happening. Did I sleep through Halloween or just totally missed it?

October was a good month for me. The cooler weather allowed me to swap out my wardrobe with sweaters and shrugs for tanks and tees. Sandals got packed up and boots were freed from storage. It also meant I had to bump up the moisture in my skin—head to toe—and fight off the dry skin before it was able to sneak in and cause a wrinkle or two. I even picked up a couple of new lipsticks and eye shadows to give my makeup look a seasonal boost.

So what things did I discover in October that added a bit of flash into my Fall fashion and glamour routine? Check out my newest “can’t live without them” items that have made a home in my fashionista ensemble:

L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Triple Power Concentrated Serum – I will say right now: I am a loyal fan of my skin care brand and have been faithful to their products for over a year. I have never had a regimen that really made such a noticeable difference in my skin’s look and texture. Plus the supplements really target what they say they will. BUT, with that being said, there are nights when I am so exhausted that I fall into bed totally forgetting to “take my face off”. It’s because of those times that I have disposable, no-rinse facial wipes to take off my makeup without leaving the comfort of my bed. But what about an age-fighting product I can keep bedside too? That’s where the Revitalift Serum comes into play. This is the first retail anti-aging product that, available at a more than reasonable price, that I have been able to use without any skin irritations or issues. Not to mention?… It works! It’s a do-everything product that can be used after a quick cleansing to keep my skin fresh, hydrated and radiant without having to leave my bed! And the fact that it is under $20 isn’t bad either! Definitely a great fill-in product when I’m too exhausted to do my entire nighttime routine.

No Miss Lip Gloss in “Ferndale Fawn” – I love No Miss cosmetics! They have high quality products, using natural resources to develop non-chemical, non-cancerous products without harming the environment. They do NO animal testing and use healthy ingredients, offering truly NATURAL products that everyone can afford. Their lip glosses feature coconut oil, grape seed oil, and vitamin E to keep your lips soft and moisturized all day with long lasting color. “Ferndale Fawn” is a great goldish nude color which looks great on a fall day either alone or topping your favorite deep lipstick. I love using it when I go with a bold eye look that pops! but want a more low-keyed pucker that still conditions my often dry lips. Although No Miss products are currently available online, keep an eye out for them in your favorite health food stores very soon! Find them at nomiss.com

L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Power Volume 24H Mascara – I know, I know, how many mascaras am I going to find that will make me say, “Oh THIS is the one.” I’ll be honest, I’m not sure if this is THE one, but I will say it is darn good! The formula is the longest-lasting mascara that I have ever used without smudging, smearing or flaking. It stays put. ALL DAY…ALL NIGHT! Plus the brush is large, full and lush, coating every lash to give you dramatic looking lashes. The closest mascara I have ever used that is similar to this cost me over $30. This one is on a retail/drugstore level for under $10. A great find and a better steal!!

Canyon River Blues Moxy Slippers – Okay, I know what you are thinking: “How can the fashionista shoe lover rave about a pair of slippers?” Because I’m a fashionista shoe lover and I know footwear. As Carrie once said in an episode of Sex and the City: “Men I may not know, but shoes?….Shoes I know!” When I have a day of writing planned at home in the comfort of my own home, I’ll be honest—you won’t find me wearing anything runway worthy. I might wear a nice top, maybe even a pair of designer jeans, but that would be dressing up. I like casual workout pants and funny graphic tees for the most part, but in the colder weather I definitely need something warm and fuzzy on my feet. The thing I like best about these slippers is that they have a really solid sole on them so if I need to go outside to get the mail, pick up a delivery or get something from my car, I don’t have to worry about my feet getting cold or wet, or slipping on the grass or ground. EVERYONE needs an “Oh heavens, I am NOT dressing up today” footwear that you can put on and just aaaaaah! in. For me?…these are them. These slippers are available at Sears for a retail price of $29.99…but watch the sales. I actually got TWO pair of these on a Buy One Get One FREE sale! WOOT for a BOGO!

Better Homes & Gardens Scented Wax Cubes in “Tropical Beach Holiday” – I know it might be a little early for Christmas scents, but BH&G gives you some great choices to ease you into the transition. I love their autumn scents, like Spiced Pumpkin Pie and Crisp Fall Leaves. Those rich warm spices just get you in the mood. But I found this “Tropical Beach Holiday” scent a nice surprise! It is like a fresh, ocean-like fragrance with strong background notes of rich pine and holiday cookies. It’s not an overpowering scent but actually throws off a light, calming, holiday smell that fills the room and your senses with the delicate essence of the approaching season. It helps motivate me for the day ahead by putting me in laid-back, holiday mood. Available at Walmart, $2.00 for six cubes.

There you go fashionistas…my fab finds in October. Remember it’s not always about the makeup you wear, the skincare you use, the styles you flash. It’s sometimes—cancel that—it’s ALWAYS about how you feel inside, the poise you wear in a smile. So embrace the things on you and around you to keep yourself feeling your absolute best. Make sure you keep your self-confidence rising even as the leaves and temperatures fall!