Friday, March 15, 2013

Illamasqua Nail Polish in Speckle



Happy Friday!! Hope you all have some fun plans for this weekend! Today I just wanted to share a few pictures of a new nail polish I've been wearing this past week, Illamasqua's Nail Polish in Speckle. 




The speckled nail polishes are part of the Spring 2013 collection from Illamasqua called I'mperfection. I love the idea behind this collection- a celebration of all the features that make us perfectly imperfect! Everyone and their mother in the beauty community has been all abuzz about these offerings, and it's not difficult to see why! 

The speckled nail polishes are a cream opaque formula, interspersed with various sizes of matte glitter particles. The formula is innovative and trendy, yet still wearable. I adore that from afar it appears as though I am wearing a lilac nail polish and not until you are up close do you notice the interesting texture. 

Although Speckle was fairly opaque in 2 coats, I opted to wear a sheer layer of Essie's Lilacism underneath for some added opacity. 

So far the wear time on this polish is fantastic. I did my manicure Saturday morning and it's still going strong with hardly any wear or chips.



What do you think of the new speckled nail polishes from Illamasqua? Perfect for Spring or just another fad?


Thanks for reading! xx

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Rediscovered: Stila Gerbera & MAC Sable


Hello lovelies! I've decided to start a new series on my blog highlighting the products that I rediscover from time to time in my makeup collection. My stash of products is admittedly quite extensive and I tend to get into makeup ruts and neglect products. So, in an attempt to make better use of the collection I have (and stop spending so much money on more makeup) I am going to try to rekindle my love for some of my forgotten beauties.

Stila Convertible Color in Gerbera is a soft peach shade that is super flattering on fair to light skin tones. Unfortunately, this cute little compact has been sitting unloved in my makeup drawers for the past at least 12 months, since I purchased it. Despite how beautiful the color is, I was just never able to get into using it on a regular basis because of the application, or lack thereof I should say. I originally applied this using my fingers which just didn't work. I found it difficult to blend and would end up with patchy, uneven color distribution. That was all until a week ago when I whipped this baby out for my Peaches and Cream post and gave it a try with the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush. Finally I understood what all the fuss was about with these Convertible Colors! The Expert Face Brush made application effortless and left a flawless, beautifully diffused finish. I am in love with this blush now and it is the only blush to grace my cheeks for the past week. Applied properly, Gerbera leaves a dewy (but not sticky) finish on the cheeks that makes you look youthful and well rested. It also has incredible staying powder for a cream blush. Because of the luminous finish, I like to apply this blush higher on the cheekbones to act as a very subtle highlight as well. Give this one a try ladies, you won't be sorry!

Now on to the eyes! On a whim I decided last week to pull out my MAC eyeshadow palette. I was inspired by this video from the beautiful Lucy Garrick on youtube to whip out my MAC Sable Eyeshadow (a shimmering plum-toned medium brown), another long-forgotten favorite. I buffed Sable across the eyelid and under the lower lashline, with a little naked lunch in the inner third of the eye and a bit of MUFE Aqua Eyes Eyeliner in 2L on the lashlines. Let me tell you, I could not believe what this did for my green eyes! The first day I wore this look, even one of my coworkers commented asking if I had done something different with my makeup. If you are looking for a sophisticated yet feminine eye look that will make green or hazel eyes pop, look no further! The plum tones in Sable contrast with green eyes and create a gorgeous effect.








So there you have it, my rediscovered makeup look, fresh for Spring! Are there any makeup products you have neglected that you plan on using again?

Thanks for reading!

xx

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Spring Skin Care Haul


Spring is almost here! And what that means is no longer hiding behind a) layers of clothes and b) layers of makeup. In preparation for the warmer months ahead, I took a trip to my local Sephora to stock up on some old favorites as well as some new goodies to make sure my skin is in tip-top condition for Spring!

REN Mayblossom T-Zone Control Cleansing Gel
For starters, I've noticed that the REN Skin Care line has been getting lots of praise in the beauty world lately. I may or may not have mentioned, but ever since I went off of the birth control pill my normally combination skin has taken a nose-dive into seriously oily territory. I have been on the hunt for an oil-controlling cleanser to use in the mornings. The REN Mayblossom T-Zone Control Cleansing Gel got great reviews on Sephora.com, so I'm going to give it a shot! I especially appreciate that it is free of all the baddies like parabens, sulfates, mineral oil and synthetic fragrances. You can purchase this here

Clinique Turnaround Concentrate Radiance Renewer
Ever in search of that elusive glow, I also picked up the Clinique Turnaround Concentrate Radiance Renewer. I was watching a video from Kate from ghostparties who has amazing skin and mentioned that she uses this, so I was sold! This serum is meant to be used under your moisturizer to gently exfoliate, even skin tone and lighten any discolorations. If I can get my skin to look even half as luminous as Kate's, I'll be a happy lady! You can purchase this here.

Kate Somerville Nourish Daily Moisturizer
Kate Somerville's Nourish Daily Moisturizer was a repurchase. This moisturizer has been my holy-grail night cream for the past few months. It is lightweight, intensely moisturizing and just lovely on my sensitive skin. I even converted my boyfriend to using this and he loves it as well! You can purchase this here.

Shiseido Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector SPF 42
The Shiseido Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector was another repurchase. This is hands-down the best sunscreen I have found on the market. It feels like you have nothing on the skin. For a full review, click here.You can purchase this here.


I would love to know how you are getting your skin Spring-ready! Please let me know what your holy grail skin products are.

Thanks for reading!

xx

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

New Shade! Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment SPF 15 in Petal



Just in time for Spring, the maker of my favorite lip balm, Fresh, has released a new shade of their ever famous Sugar Lip Treatments. I have gone through countless tubes of the original, non-tinted Sugar Lip Treatment. Although pricey, I haven't been able to find an alternative that compares to it in hydrating capabilities, texture, and scent (gorgeous lemony-goodness!). And although all the prior tinted versions were beautiful, there was never one that was wearable enough for me to splash out the money. That is until now!







Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in Petal is a soft, neutral pink shade, that I was left wondering for years when Fresh would release! Although I had hoped it would be more a baby pink shade, I have still come to appreciate and love this tinted balm. It reminds me of the Sugar Lip Treatment in Honey, but with pink tones and not as dark. The color is a natural, sophisticated pink that leans towards light mauve. Not overly bright, I imagine this shade would look suitable on many skin tones and ages. It is fairly pigmented and can be worn as either a sheer wash, or built up to a more opaque lip. The Petal shade makes your lips look naturally full, flushed, and plump (think what you wished your lips look like on their own).  I also find the wear time for this lip balm to be excellent and I love how soft and comfortable my lips feel with it on.




 I am wearing tarte Smooth Operator Tinted Moisturizer, Stila Convertible Color in Gerbera, Burberry Eyeshadow in Pale Barley, Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in Petal



I can see myself getting quite some use out of this product this Spring. What do you think about Fresh's newest Lip Treatment release? 

Thanks for reading!

xx

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Peaches and Cream



If you were to sort through my makeup collection, you would be sure to find a whole lot of peach products.  Whether on the eyes, lips, or cheeks, peach makeup has always been a full-proof way to bring a little life back into lackluster post-Winter skin. A universally-flattering shade, it has the ability to bring warmth and life to the face while still remaining youthful and feminine. With Spring quickly approaching (fingers crossed!) I'm sure a lot of us are turning to products that can give us a bit of a glow and restore a "peaches and cream" complexion. Also, peach is a great option when the bronzes and corals of Summer can seem out of place in the early Spring months. So, I thought it was only suitable to compile a mini collection of some of my most-reached-for peach products.




Cheeks
When Winter, stress, or lack of sleep has leached all the glow out of my face, one of my favorite solutions is to apply a peach, or peachy-pink blush. I find the warm tones in peach blushes look more natural on my skin tone than true pinks do. Some of my all-time favorites are MAC Immortal Flower (review here), a matte "peaches and cream" shade and of course NARS Deep Throat, a shimmering golden peachy-pink blush. On the rare occasion that I feel like a cream blush, my go-to is the lovely Stila Convertable Color in Gerbera, a near counterpart in cream form to MAC's Immortal Flower.





Eyes
One of my go-to looks in the warmer months is to wear a shimmering peach-toned eyeshadow across the lids, paired with my signature black winged liner. The winged liner helps to bring subtle definition to the eye, while the shimmering peach shades disguise any shadows and bring light to the eye area. For cream products, I love the Chanel Ilusion d'Ombre Eyeshadow in Emerveille, a very subtle, yet highly shimmery nude peach shade. Of course no peach-themed post would be complete without a nod to the gorgeous golden-peach MAC Paint Pot in Rubenesque. My two pics for powder eyeshadows have to be the limited edition NARS Eyeshadow Trio in Ramatuelle (review here) and a long-time favorite, the Clinique Eyeshadow Duo in Sunburst




Lips
Truth be told, I don't often stray far from my favorite baby pink lip shades, but when I do want something more warm-toned, one of my favorites is Stila's Lip Glace in Apricot (which has the most divine smell). For a more nude peach lip, I turn to Revlon's Lip Butter in Creamsicle





In this photo I am wearing MAC's Paint Pot in Rubenesque across the eye lid, then topped with the NARS Trio in Ramatuelle. Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Liner on the top lashline and MAC Powersurge Eye Kohl on the bottom line help to define my eyes. I added a pop of peach on my cheeks with MAC's Blush in Immortal Flower and then finished off the look with Stila's Lip Glace in Apricot on the lips.



What are your favorite peach products?
Thanks for reading lovelies! 

xx

 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Buying Into the Hype: A Clarins Makeup Haul



It seems that for the longest time I have been hearing nothing but rave reviews about makeup offering from Clarins. Up until now though, the brand never quite appealed to me. Maybe it just seemed a little too adult or old-fashioned to me? It appears that in the last few years though, Clarins has really pushed themselves to deliver more trend-forward, modern makeup. I have to say after getting a chance to use a few of their products, my initial stigma against them couldn't have been more wrong! Call me a Clarins convert, because I'm hooked!

The three products I decided to pick up were all items that I have seen reviewed before and raved about from other beauty bloggers, so of course I had high hopes!

Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector (purchase here) was one of the main products I have wanted to try. I have seen countless posts on blogs dedicated to this little beauty. I purchased the shade 01 Rose Shimmer, a sheer nude pink. It is my understanding that this product is meant to be a balm-gloss type hybrid. Marketed as intensely hydrating and plumping, it is supposed to bring a 3-D effect to the lips. My first impression? The smell of this product is absolutely divine. It smells exactly like cotton candy!

I then chose to purchase the new Skin Illusion Loose Powder Foundation (purchase here) in 108 Sand. This is a loose mineral foundation that is incredibly finely milled and contains light reflecting pigments and plant extracts to create a radiant finish on the skin. So far, I am incredibly impressed and will have a full review up as soon as I have had adequate time to test it out. In the meantime, here is the post that peaked my interest in this foundation to begin with, from the lovely Gemma of Gemsmaquillage (link here)

Lastly, I couldn't resist this bronzer/blush duo face powder called Colour Accents Powder and Blush (purchase here). I believe this face powder was part of the Fall 2012 collection but is still available on the Clarins website and at select counters. This compact contains alternating shades of light bronze and a deeper bronze, interlaced with baby pink stripes.  Using a smaller brush, you do have the option to use the individual shades, but I prefer running my large MAC 187 Duo Fibre brush across the entire compact to create a bronzed glow. Happily, this powder looks just as beautiful in the compact as it does on the skin.  It really is a fair girl's dream bronzing powder! 


Have you tried any makeup products from Clarins? If so, are there any others you would recommend?


Hope you all are having a wonderful weekend! Thanks for reading!

xx


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Subtle Smoke: A Romantic Makeup Look



With Valentine's Day right around the corner, I thought I would share with you my go-to look for a romantic night out. This look consists of slightly smokey, plummy eyes, glowing skin, and light pink lips. Although I am a fan of more dramatic makeup looks on others, I just don't feel that I can pull them off myself. When I know I have an event or a special evening to attend, I really like to take the approach of my everyday makeup, but just bumping up one element of it, being either smoking out the eyes a little more or putting a vibrant color on my lips. 

As pretty as they are, for this particular occasion I avoided any bright or dark lip colors. I find that men don't really appreciate dramatic makeup the way that women do. Chances are, no matter how pretty your fuchsia lipstick looks on you, the person you want to be kissing tomorrow night doesn't want to be wearing it as well. 



*Please excuse the frizzy hair!*


Eyes
For the eyes, I built the look around the new Spring 2013 Chanel Eye Quad in Raffnement (review here). I prepped my lids with a little Maybelline Colour Tattoo in Barely Beige, then buffed the taupe shade across the lid. I then defined the outer corner, crease and lower lashline with the darker shimmering plum shade. To highlight the inner corners, I applied the iridescent lavender shade. Because I wanted to keep this look sexy and smokey, I avoided any pencil or gel liner and went for a black eyeshadow, MAC's Black Tied, to line my upper lashline. No smokey eye is complete without lashing of an ultra-black, volumizing mascara. My choice had to be the amazing new Chanel Le Volume de Chanel Mascara.

Face
I didn't want my cheeks to compete with the eyes in any way. I just wanted a glowing, healthy look to my skin. To achieve this, I dusted some Benefit Blush in Hervana on my cheeks, followed by Benefit Watt's Up! Highlighter across my cheekbones, browbone, and down the bridge of my nose.

Lips
For a romantic night out, you want your lips to look as soft and kissable as possible. For this effect, I chose Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Sourire, a warm light pink color. The glossy, balmy formula of this lipstick is ideal for a night out because you won't have to worry about it getting anywhere.


Let me know what your go-to look is when you have a romantic night out!


Hope you all have a very happy Valentine's Day no matter what your plans are!

xx