Saturday, February 22, 2014

Love for bareMinerals...

I've heard a lot about the bareMinerals brand and seen a lot of ads on TV. When the company came out with their pressed formulation, I thought like many others, I became more intrigued. Today's post is about a beautiful eye shadow quad I've had for a few months now from bareMinerals called the "THE TRUTH"quad. I heard about it first from some ladies on you tube who seemed to really enjoy it...

This quad is a gorgeous everyday neutral taupe/brown palette. The packaging is sleek, compact and made with rubberized material (can get dirty easily but you can wipe it clean with a cloth). The colors are serendipitous (shimmery white), magnetism (taupe grey with sheen), fate (plummy brown with sheen), and apropos (purple brown with glitter). There are no mattes in this palette. Fate and magnetism are gorgeous for everyday... in fact this whole palette is gorgeous and perfect for keeping in one's travel makeup case. This is a cool toned palette but the shades are neutral enough that they seem to complement my warm dark tan complexion fairly well.

This palette did cost me around $40 US - so it is a high end product... the texture of the eye shadows are quite smooth and soft (but no so soft that you have dust everywhere). If you happen to visit a bareMinerals counter, I definitely recommend testing these out - I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Thursday, February 20, 2014


So this is not really a neutral pairing but a combination of different eye products to create a "neutral" look. I've been wearing it everyday for the past week with my Tom Ford wicked blush and a different pick lipstick/gloss daily.
NYX jumbo eye pencil in pure gold; Rimmel scandal eyes in deep blue
Elf elements compact containing MAC eye shadows: Arena (top left); Saddle (top right); Expensive Pink (bottom left); Sushi flower (bottom right)

What I first do is use my urban decay primer potion as a base. Then I apply the NYX jumbo eye pencil in pure gold all over the lid and blend using my fingers or a blending brush. Then I apply MAC arena all over the lid and MAC saddle in the crease as a blending color. I line my lower waterline with the Rimmel scandaleyes liner in deep blue, put on some mascara and I'm good to go. In my opinion, I don't find that the Rimmel liner is waterproof despite it's claims and I also don't think the urban decay primer potion is that long lasting. The NYX jumbo pencil is definitely not long lasting on my lids (at least compared to the Milani pencils) - but at least there are no claims saying that on the package.

Regardless, below I attempted to do some swatches but it was night time so my apologies for the poor lighting.
Swatches (left to right): Rimmel deep blue, NYX pure gold MAC arena, MAC saddle & NYX pure gold with MAC arena on top
I find these colors suit tan complexions quite well and is a great "every day" look for those with blue and brown eyes.

What do you think? Do you have suggestions that would look great on darker skin toned gals? Please share...

A beautiful spring blush

As the weather warms, the flowers bloom and the rain falls more frequently, it feels like Spring is upon us... giving me a reason to add more pinkie colors to my makeup routine. The first product that came to mind was the Tom Ford blush in Wicked.

Tom Ford blush in Wicked
I'm not sure how the designer came up with the name (I don't like it)... but I love this blush. It does have a soft shimmer and it is visible on the cheeks so it can emphasize pores. However, I like the fact that with this blush I don't need to use a highlighter. I use the a stippling blush to apply this product and it gives me glowing pink cheeks. His blush is very soft and shows up very well on my NC44 skin tone. It seems to last for several hours - however I do think that over time like most blushes it does oxidize on me... (I apply this blush on top of my setting powder).
Tom Ford blush in Wicked

I find that along with my base, I can use this blush, a pink lip stick/gloss, some blue eyeliner and mascara and it gives me a really fresh looking, put together face for spring. I find that considering the quantity, quality and pigmentation of the product, this is a must have for me. 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014


So this is an eye shadow combo that I've been carrying with me in my makeup bag mainly because it's convenient and easy to use. I first heard about the Rimmel eye shadow quad in smokey brun from the lovely Lisa Eldridge when she was doing a video tutorial on you tube. I find it to be a very simple, basic neutral quad - although the shadows are quite powdery. I decided to use it with Laura Mercier caviar stick in sand glow. I really like using the caviar sticks. I don't have to sharpen the pencils and the color seems to stay put all day. How did she come up with the name "caviar sticks" though? I wonder....
Rimmel quad in smokey brun; Laura Mercier caviar stick in sand glow
With sand glow as the base, I usually mix the light lavender/taupe shade with the golden brown shade as an all over lid color. The white shade is used as a highlight and sometimes I deepen the crease or lightly line with the darkest shade. Often I use my blush/bronzer as a contour shade. The eye shadow quad apparently complements blue eyes well, but I think this combo is great for an every day quick, not-so-boring eye look.

Some serious love for maybelline....

So today I went shopping at Marshalls and decided to pick up some home decor and ended up spending close to $100. So much for "thrift/smart shopping"....

Anyways, while looking through my everyday travel makeup bag I found two of my favorite mascaras I thought I should share with you. Both are from the drug store created by Maybelline.
Left: Maybelline Lash Stiletto; Right: Maybelline Full N Soft
Maybelline Lash Stiletto is a really great lengthening mascara. I find that it does not add much volume but the brush is great for the lower lashes and for reaching the inner lashes to give it more definition.

Maybelline Lash Stiletto

Maybelline Full N' Soft is probably my favorite drug store mascara ever. It gives me the "my lashes but better" look. It is a great mascara for those who want the "no makeup makeup" look as people think I have naturally dark and thick lashes.
Maybelline Full N' Soft

From my experience (I wear glasses), I did not experience any flaking and they seemed to last all day for me. Also, they are relatively easy to take off with makeup remover and cleanser. For both mascaras, I personally enjoyed them more when I first opened them and the formula was more "wet" (not everyone likes that); they did seem to thicken in few weeks it's easier to apply multiple coats (personally I'm more of a one coat mascara kind of girl). I find these mascaras can last me a good three months so with all things considered, these beauties are a beauty staple for me.

Sunday, February 2, 2014


Tom Ford is a really interesting brand. It is very, very expensive but the designer has a very well edited line of makeup that is very appealing. I'm not a fan of his lip products, although I love the colors, I think they are extremely drying and suck the moisture out of my lips. However his blushes I think are some of the best on the market today. I decided to try out his liquid foundation in the shade praline. I bought mine from Saks Fifth Avenue.
Tom Ford liquid foundation in Praline
I love the packaging and the pump - you can control the amount of foundation you get. The foundation itself has a very light fluid-like consistency and coverage is light (similar to a tinted moisturizer). It gives a matte effect and I do find it slightly drying and that it can emphasize dry patches. The foundation on it's own does not seem to last more than 4 to 6 hours. To counteract the negative effects I make sure to exfoliate and moisturize my face well before hand. Also, I mix in Guerlain's face primer in meteorites perles with the foundation to make it a more gel like consistency. 
Guerlain meteorites primer
This primer also helps the foundation to last all day and gives a more soft focused finish. Would I recommend this product? For the cost, probably not. It is definitely not a must have and I think there are products that are lower priced that perform better. But I think it's awesome that the designer appeals to people with darker skin tones and if you are willing to splurge and/or are a foundation junkie this is definitely worth a try...

Laura Mercier Secret brightening powder 2

Two days ago I went to the mall and bought a clinique chubby stick and one of their new blushes... I love the chubby stick - can't wait to discuss it in an upcoming post. Anyways, Bath and Body works was having a buy 3, get 3 free sale - so I bought some body wash etc... and the SA recommended a local coffee shop. The guy at the coffee shop made the best vanilla latte I've had... definitely a place I will be visiting from now on when I go to the mall. But anyways, there were two annoying brats at the coffee shop who were so loud and obnoxious and they thought they were funny. But they looked and acted like idiots. Why do people forget their manners in public? Seriously....

Anyways, on to more frivolous things....
I thought I would discuss my thoughts on the Laura Mercier brightening powder. This powder is typically used for setting the under eye area. I bought this based on rave reviews from gossmakeupartist on youtube. I don't find it brightening at all... in fact, I've used it for setting my entire face base and I think it works quite well and gives the face a soft matte effect. 
Laura Mercier secret brightening powder #2
There are small shimmers in the product but it is hard to see on the face unless you really load up your brush. I don't think this would be good for photos at wall - but for every day use I think it's great. The one con is the packaging. It does have a sifter - but powder goes everywhere when I open it. I wish I could close or open the sifter... this product is NOT travel friendly AT ALL. I have to be very careful opening it. Also, I need the smallest amount on my brush to set my face. I feel like this small tub is going to last me for years (but I still bought a back up from Sephora).

I have dry skin but I love face powder... in fact I'm obsessed with them... I don't like looking oily/shiny... dewy/slightly luminous is okay though. Not sure if that's normal, but that's 

Sunday, January 19, 2014


Have you ever tried a mascara primer? My first experience was a sample from Lancome that I received with a sephora purchase a long time ago... I absolutely loved it. But for whatever reason instead of buying the lancome primer I decided to purchase one from shiseido.
Shisiedo mascara primer

I saw great reviews online and I've been using it for several months. I have no regrets over my purchase. The formula is quite different from the lancome version which is white in color, this one looks like vaseline and goes on clear. It does not feel greasy though and I feel like my lashes look fuller when I put this primer on. I feel like eye lash primers should be a must have in a make up lover's arsenal. Currently, I use my eye lash primer with the amazing Giorgio Armani eyes to kill mascara...
Shiseido mascara primer, Giorgio Armani eyes to kill mascara
I really think the eyes to kill mascara is overpriced (so is Chanel). But, Giorgio Armani often gives out 20% off discount codes during the summer and winter which makes the price a little more easier to swallow. Honestly though, I think this is a great mascara... I love my maybelline and loreal mascaras but there is something about the way this makes my lashes look - I just love it... it definitely gives you volume and length (makes your lashes look more separated rather than clumped together).
Giorgio Armani eyes to kill mascara
 I'm not just impressed by the formula, I also really enjoy the wand. I can get to my inner corners and am able to do my bottom lashes quite easily with the brush. I think if you are looking for a great quality mascara and willing to splurge I would definitely recommend adding this to your list.

Great neutral pairings part II

I thought I'd add another neutral pairing I just think is gorgeous...
LMDB corinthian, Laura mercier amethyst
I use Laura Mercier (LM) amethyst as a base and put Le Metier de Beaute (LMDB) corinthian on top. This eye shadow combo makes a great every day netural purple taupe look. I absolutely love it. Obviously, I added my favorite brown blending shade (Pandora's Au cafe) to my crease to blend and complete the look!
LM amethyst, LMDB corinthian, amethyst base with corinthian on top
 I purchased both my colors from Neiman Marcus online. I got the Laura Mercier pencil in a set with four other shades. I think this shade is a more subdued version of the color of the year for 2014 "radiant orchid" and a great way to pull of a "trend" look for every day... (at least in my opinion).

Hope you love it as much as I do!!!
Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Great neutral pairings part I

I thought I would list some neutral eye shadow pairings I've been really loving recently...

Nars Isolde duo, Milani brown deluxe shadow eyez pencil

This first combination is Milani shadow eyez 12 hour pencil in 02 brown deluxe with Nars Isolde duo. I use an eye primer (UDPP), then put the shadow eyez on my lid and blend with a blending brush. Then I apply the lighter shade of the Isolde duo to my entire lid. I apply the darker shade to my crease. 
From left to right: milani brown deluxe, isolde duo lighter shade, isolde darker shade, milani brown deluxe base with isolde lighter shade on top (all shades swatched without primer)

For some extra depth, I also apply a dark blue shade to my crease (Lumiere's midnight) and then blend the crease with a neutral brown shade (Pandora's Au cafe). During day time, I usually just line my lower lid (either with black or dark blue liner) and then finish off with mascara. 

What do you guys think? Have you tried this pairing?


Estee lauder illuminating primer

I used to associate the Estee Lauder brand as an outdated, old woman's brand. But after recently trying their brand, I've realized that they have some really great quality all star products. Few years ago, I had never used a face primer and did not understand what the hype was all about them. So after receiving and trying some samples of face primers from sephora (the one I remember really liking was from the brand Fresh from sephora), I decided to explore more about them. I remember choosing the estee lauder illuminating primer because of two reasons - the price and the reviews on the internet (I can't remember where but I think it was makeupalley).

I've used this product on most work days (> 40hours per week) for over a year and just ran out of it few weeks ago. The formula was incredibly light weight and not greasy. I work 12 to 13 hour shifts most days and I found that this product did make my base last the whole day - my natural oils would come through but I never looked like a greasy mess. I also found that if I put a little "extra" on - my skin would look more radiant.

This is definitely a holy grail no-fail product. I love it when products do what they claim... Currently I've tried other more expensive "illuminating" primers but their lasting performance is sub-par compared to this one... I have to combine at least two of them to get the long lasting results of this one.

If you're ever at an estee lauder counter ask the sales person to give you a sample to try... I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.


MAC pleasure model blush, MAC silver dawn eye shadow

I've never paid attention to MAC collections... however recently I watched a you tube haul by natalie from flowerbomb31 on the recent MAC magnetic nudes collection for winter 2013. I really liked the concept of the collection so I decided after much debating to purchase the silver dawn eye shadow and pleasure model blush. It seems that these products are sold out in most places but I purchased mine at
MAC silver dawn eyeshadow
Silver dawn eyeshadow is best described as a taupe grey no-fuss eye shadow with some sheen to it. It looks lovely on the lid and very wearable for everyday.. I found the texture was a bit dry and stiff and the swatch was not too intense - however the product was still relatively easy to work with. I think this color would easily complement a variety a skin tones and is one of the must haves from this collection.

MAC pleasure model blush
Pleasure model blush is a terracota blush with a slight sheen to it. It seems matte on the face. I think this is a gorgeous blush on tan/darker skin tones. 

I really like the two products I've tried so far. What have you tried from this line?