Wednesday, July 27, 2011

EOTD No Makeup Makeup

The idea of "No Makeup" makeup has always struck me as an oxymoron. Being that I love makeup as much as I do, why would I ever want to look like I'm not wearing anything? Well... sometimes there are those days that I just don't want to put in the effort.

It seems like a rash of beauty gurus put up videos in the past couple weeks featuring "No Makeup" makeup, so I figured I would jump on the bandwagon. Although, I gotta tell you, it didn't save me any time. In fact, I think I actually used more makeup to achieve this look than just doing my "regular" routine. And the bottom line is that I love my eyeliner too much to skip it.

Eyeshadow Primer: Too Faced Shadow Insurance
All over lid color: MAC Bisque
Lid color: Benefit Fawn Over Me
Crease: MAC Cork
Highlight: MAC Blanc Type
Mascara: Cover Girl Lash Blast Volume in Blackest Black

Monday, July 25, 2011

Pretty Little Liars & Benefit Lipstick

While it seems like most girls are into "Gossip Girl" or "90210" these days - I'm not. I am, however, a huge Pretty Little Liars fan. Admittedly, I hadn't even heard of the series until the TV show came out. But I think it's safe to say that I've been hooked since Day One. I mean, the makeup is awesome. The nails are cool. And that hair? So pretty...

Anyways... imagine my surprise when I was watching last Tuesday's episode and I spotted Aria (Lucy Hale) using what looks an awful lot like a Benefit lipstick. That white whirl is pretty distinct, in my opinion.

So, naturally my next thought was to wonder what color it was. While it's hard to tell for sure, I think it's more than likely their Full Finish Lipstick in No Competition. It looks like it's the same plummy pinky-brown (or "heathered plum," as Benefit says) that she's wearing in the next shot.

Regardless of which color it really is, she's gorgeous!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Kim Kardashian's Makeup Bag

Here's an article I thought was interesting. It's a sneak inside Kim Kardashian's makeup bag...

Apparently, the lovely Kim Kardashian uses Revlon's Color Burst Lipstick in Soft Nude. I just found that funny, considering she has so much money and she uses a "lowly" little drugstore brand. (On a side note, though, I did hear she's a fan of NARS Turkish Delight lip gloss, so I guess her stash isn't totally low-end.)

And shockingly enough, I actually have a swatch of Soft Nude here.

Link to full article and other products here.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Mario Badescu Glycolic Acid Toner

I go back and forth about toners. When I first got into skincare in my teens, I used one. Then I didn't. Then I did. Then I didn't. ... You see the pattern?

I decided that I wanted to get back into using one, but not just any toner. I wanted one that I knew was actually doing something more than just sitting on my skin or making it sticky. I wanted one with some kind of clarifying abilities, so my search led me to Mario Badescu.

$18 for 8 oz is kind of steep, especially when there are so many cheaper alternatives out there (like witch hazel and apple cider vinegar). But I liked that there are only four ingredients in this baby. Four! Water, aloe vera, grapefruit extract and glycolic acid.

Some people have lamented that this only has 2% glycolic acid, which they don't feel is enough to actually do anything. That may be the case, but I think that's why the grapefruit extract is there, too. Plus, I think 2% is fine, especially if you're using it day and night.

I've been using this twice a day for several weeks now and I really do like it. It definitely lets me know that my skin is clean, it smells pleasant (to me, anyway), and it's blue! I have a thing for blue skincare, apparently...

Does this toner solve all of my skincare problems? No, since many of my issues are related to stress and hormones. But it does its job, which is all I can really expect from it.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Clinique Polar Blues

Clinique Colour Surge Eye Shadow Quad in Polar Blue is another soft (and safe!) quad for people that don't like a ton of color. I hadn't worn any of these shadows in a super long time and decided that it was time they got some more use. That being said, I can see why I don't reach for it very often. While silky and shimmery, these eyeshadows have little color pay off and if you're not careful, they'll actually disappear when you're blending. :(

Clinique says the colors are: a classic bone, a midtone grey shimmer, a soft baby blue, and a blue denim.

I say the colors are: a shimmery off-white, a shimmery grey taupe, a shimmery ice blue and a dusky blue.

Lid: the ice blue
Crease: the grey taupe
Outer V: the dark blue
Highlight: the off white

Kinda disappointing, isn't it? It looks so pretty in the pan and even has some decent swatches. But then you go to actually wear it and it pretty much fades into the same color. I can see myself using the off white and taupe shades, but the blues are pretty much worthless to me.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Cover Girl Lip Perfection in Feline

So... I had a LOTD for you featuring the new Cover Girl Lip Perfection lipstick in Feline. ... Buuut ... when I uploaded the picture it was terrible. Terrible! And by that point, I'd already decided I hated the lipstick and I lost it somewhere between my house and my car, while I was waiting to take it back to the store.

So... I guess I have two lonely little swatches and a rant about this lipstick. Enjoy! :)

Swatched once on top and 3-4 times on the bottom.

Cover Girl claims that by using their fan-dangled lipstick, the Lip Perfection, you'll improve the look and texture of your lips in just seven days. I fully intended to put that challenge to the test, so I trotted over to my local Walgreens and picked up a tube. I'd seen a couple swatches online already and knew which ones I definitely did not want. The rest was all guesswork, based on the colored plastic on the end of the shiny purplish tube.

I ended up getting Feline, a super high frost pinky color that can (and does) throw a peach sheen in certain lighting. And when I say super high frost, I mean super.high.frost. Like 80's frost. It wasn't flattering. At all. Which is half the reason there isn't an actual LOTD picture.

But the thing that I hated about this lipstick, more than the unflattering frost, was the fact that it left a pinky-peach ring around my lips after it faded and it dried my lips out. For something that it supposed to replenish your lips, I couldn't believe how parched my lips felt. Sure, the lipstick felt nice at first. It has a good slip, like a shiny lip balm, but after you've worn it for 30+ minutes, my lips started to dry out. I kept reapplying the lipstick (like a balm, hoping for more moisture) and it just kept getting worse. Then the dreaded ring showed up a few hours later and I knew that was the first and last Lip Perfection lipstick I was buying.

It seems like most of the beauty bloggers love this new line from Cover Girl, but I say Maybelline Color Sensational is still my favorite drugstore lipstick.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

NOTD Sally Hansen First Kiss

First Kiss was part of the Tracy Reese for Sally Hansen Spring 2011 line. It's a really pretty peachy-pinky, light coral creme. Depending on the lighting, it can look a little ... bright ... but I don't think it's as shocking as, say, hot pink. Or the bright primary yellow that pops up now and again.

I think this is a great color for summer. It might be a little too bright for spring, but it's perfect for the super-hot weather Po'Dunk has been having lately. I also think it would be flattering on a lot of different skin tones. I tend to stay away from orange-based colors, but this one has just enough pink for me to pull it off.

I must say, though, that it took me three coats to get everything to smooth out properly and not look patchy. I was surprised, honestly, since it looks so pigmented. But I actually painted my nails with this two different times and I had to do three coats both times. So.. maybe two thicker coats are all that's needed, or three thinner ones. Your choice. :)

Monday, July 11, 2011

EOTD UD Gunmetal

I don't know if I'll ever get tired of my Urban Decay Naked palette. I'm sure you guys are, but I can't help it! There's so many pretty combinations you can try! So, here's my Gunmetal one. I like this one because you can keep it light-ish for the office, or really vamp it up for night. Since I was going to work, you can guess which one I opted for... :)

Undereye concealer: Garnier Nutritioniste Skin Renew Anti-Dark Circle Roller
Base: MAC Paint Pot in Painterly
Lid color and under eye: UD Gunmetal
Eyeshadow along upper lash line: UD Creep
Blending above crease: UD Naked
Highlight: UD Sin
Inner corner eye pencil: UD Yeyo
Inner corner eye shadow: UD Virgin
Eyeliner on top lashes: UD Zero
Eyeliner to tightline/waterline: MAC Eye Kohl in Smolder
Mascara: Cover Girl Lash Blast Volume in Blackest Black

Friday, July 8, 2011

Neutrogena Naturals Fresh Cleansing + Makeup Remover

Wanting something a little different than the super basic/super gentle Purpose cleanser, I saw this bad boy in the skincare aisle and knew I had to bring it home. I was initially torn between this one and their Purifying Facial Cleanser (that one's formulated with salicylic acid). I opted for the Fresh Cleansing + Makeup Remover because, as I've said before, I'm lazy and I like my cleanser to do everything. It already takes me way too long to get ready for bed - I don't want to have to monkey with two different cleansers for eye makeup vs. the rest of my face.

The cleanser itself is a milky goo, kind of like a pearly liquid hand soap. A little goes a long way, since it foams up quite nicely with either your hands or some kind of brush/scrubber (like the Olay Pro X brush). It also has a fruity kind of smell. Some people said it's pear-like, but I think it smells like green apples. Sometimes it can be a little overwhelming, in my opinion, but I'm not a fan of heavily fragranced/perfumed facial products.

Aside from that, it is a nice, basic cleanser. It removes 98% of my makeup (sometimes I still have some residue along my lower lash line, but I think that's from squeezing my eyes shut) and it doesn't make my skin burn or feel tight or anything funky. I haven't noticed any kind of reduction in my breakouts or clogged pores, but it didn't seem to create any, either.

In the end, it cleanses and removes makeup - just like it said it would. I'm not too keen on the scent, but it's not enough to stop me from finishing the bottle. Would I repurchase? ...Probably not. Like I said, I prefer unscented stuff (or at least something with a "clean" scent). And I would rather spend $8 for 12 oz of the Purpose cleanser vs. 6 oz for the Neutrogena.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

EOTD MAC Shroom and Satin Taupe

An EOTD featuring two of MAC's cult classics: Shroom and Satin Taupe. (Can we tell I like Satin Taupe?) This is one of those perfect, "Crap! I don't know what to wear, but I have to look like I did something!" kind of looks.

Undereye concealer: Garnier Nutritioniste Skin Renew Anti-Dark Circle Roller
Lid color: MAC Shroom, with MAC Phloof! in the very center
Outer V and under eye: MAC Satin Taupe
Highlight: MAC Shroom
Eyeliner: Stila SmudgeStick in Stingray
Mascara: Cover Girl Lash Blast Volume in Blackest Black

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Physician's Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum

A couple months ago I sent away for the new eyeliner/eyelash serum from Physician's Formula (they were giving X amount away for free and I used a code I found in Glamour magazine). I'd honestly forgotten about it until the day it showed up in the mail. Since then, I decided to test out PF's claims about increasing lash length and volume.

Well, I used it faithfully, everyday, for 4 weeks (like they said to). I did take pictures of my "before" and "after" but I didn't post them for one simple reason: there was virtually no difference. My lashes looked the same. Same length, same thickness. Nothing to knock my socks off.

That being said, I do still really like this eyeliner. The one claim I was able to back up was the 24+ hour wear. I spent one day wearing nothing but this eyeliner (which looked really weird, I know) and it even lasted through a full night of sleep without budging.

I must say, I am a huge fan of this design. I'm really lazy when it comes to my eyeliners and I'm not a huge, huge fan of the "ink well/brush" design. I like the convenience of having it all in one handy, dandy pen. Plus, the brush is really easy to use.

I really like how easy it is to get a thick line, or a super, teeny line - it all depends on how much pressure you use. And it never "skips" or "drags" along my lashline, which is another bonus.

From left to right: Physician's Formula Eye Booster; mark On the Edge; Revlon ColorStay Liquid; Maybelline Lash Stiletto

Other than not "boosting" my lashes, the only other complaint (and it's minor) I have is that PF isn't the blackest black eyeliner out there. When lined up next to others, it's definitely on the shinier, softer black side. That might be because of the serum aspect. But, I honestly don't mind all too much because I don't have to worry about it being too over the top for everyday wear. And when it's on my eye, you can still tell it's black. So... like I said, not too terribly put out.

For $10-$12 (depending on the store/sale), PF is my new favorite drugstore liquid eyeliner. I love how easy it is to create different looks and the convenience of the pen-style applicator. And ok... even though it didn't noticeably "boost" my lashes, I still like the idea that they're getting some sort of conditioner after all the torture I tend to put them through on a weekly basis.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatments in Sugar Plum and Sugar Rose

When I strolled into Sephora a couple weeks ago, I wasn't looking for any Fresh products. In fact, I was there for a different lip product entirely (Jack Black Intense Lip Therapy, if you're wondering). While I was chatting with the sales associate about said Jack Black product, she told me that her favorites were the ones from Fresh.

Having been around the beauty block once or twice, I already knew about Fresh's cult following and "fave" status with numerous bloggers and beauty editors. However, the $22.50 price tag for one lip balm was steep, even for a lip balm-addict like me.

The solution?

Sephora's exclusive Sugar Lip Duo.

Sugar Plum; Sugar Rose

Sugar Rose; Sugar Plum

For $22.50, Sephora lets you either get one full-sized Sugar lip treatment (0.15 oz) or two mini-sized ones (0.08 oz). Since I was torn between Rose and Plum, I figured why not both, with an extra 0.01 oz to spare? (There is also a Honey version, for those interested in a tan-ish color.)

Chock full of moisturizers, softening agents and SPF 15, I really do have a hard time deciding which one I like better. Both give a sheer, natural color that is buildable and wears off evenly. I think it's perfect for summer days, when you want some color, but don't want the stickiness of a gloss. They also work well under regular lipstick, too.

A word of caution, though. As you apply the product, it shifts from side to side and you get little dents in the side from the metal tube. Nothing horrendous, since I have some lipsticks that do that too. But after carrying Rose around in my pocket for a couple hours, I went to apply it and the tip snapped clean off, like I'd taken a knife and sliced through it! I was peeved, for sure, but I was able to squish it back into place and after it cooled, it went back to looking somewhat normal. Lesson learned. I carry it in my purse or jacket pocket from now on, not my jeans.

Happy 4th of July, everyone!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

EOTD UD Bronzes

Another EOTD featuring the Urban Decay Naked palette. I'm not thrilled with how these photographed... in person, it was a really pretty dirty bronze look.. and in pictures it looks really orange-y. Eh, oh well. :) I hope everyone has a happy 4th of July!

Undereye concealer: Garnier Nutritioniste Skin Renew Anti-Dark Circle Roller
Lid color: UD Smog
Along both lash lines: UD Darkhorse
Highlight: UD Virgin & a touch of UD Sin
Eyeliner: UD Whiskey, upper/lower lashes and on waterline
Mascara: Cover Girl Lash Blast Volume in Blackest Black