Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Face and Outfit of the Night -- Happy New Year!

I hope you are all having a safe and wonderful New Year's Eve! I'm about to leave to go to a party, but I thought I would type up a quick blog post about what I'm wearing out tonight.

I found this cute, basic black dress on clearance at Target. I'm not sure why it was on clearance in store, but full price online, but I have a feeling I will definitely be wearing this dress a lot more often. My belt belongs to my best friend, and I've worn it in my last two OOTDs. My opaque black tights are also from Target, and since they are thick, they are more resistant against tearing! I bought these amazing 5" platform booties from David's Bridal, when I was working there as a dress specialist. They are from the White by Vera Wang collection and are the most comfortable heels I have ever worn! 

Now onto the face! For my eyes, I chose to do a golden cranberry smokey eye, using my Coastal Scents 252 Ultimate Palette. I took an antique gold shade all over my lid, and black in the crease. Then, using purple and cranberry colors, I blended the edges to create a flawless look. On my lips I'm wearing the Milani Color Statement Lipstick in "Sangria"! 

Also, just a quick note. The iron I used for my hair was a BaByliss Pro Porcelain Ceramic 1/2" Marcel Iron. I got this curling iron while in beauty school and I have to say, it has become my most favorite thing for curling hair! Take some time to learn to properly curl your hair. There is a proper technique. Using proper curling technique not only will give you beautiful, shiny, long-lasting curls, but will help save the ends of your hair from so much damage.

That certainly was quick! Now I'm off to meet up with my boyfriend before heading off to a party. I hope you all have a very happy new year. Be safe, and enjoy! 

- d.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Johanna Mason's Tribute Parade Look

This look is from the scene where Johanna gets a bit risque! I've been told a few times that I remind people of Johanna Mason, and I hope that's true, because Jena Malone is absolutely gorgeous. It was incredibly hard to find a decent photo on the internet, other than gifs from Tumblr. However, I did manage to get a few decent shots to help me create this look.

This look was so fun to create! I primarily used the Too Faced Shadow Insurance Policy Collection. This look is all about her crazy art liner and her brows. Johanna is from District 7, lumber, which is obviously what inspired this look. 

To start, I used my Too Face Shadow Insurance Primer (not photographed) all over my lid, up to the brows. Then, I started work on my brows. Using a synthetic angled brush and my new Anastasia DipBrow Pomade in "Dark Brown," I very intensely filled in my brows. Naturally, my brows don't go in very far, so I extended the inner parts of my brows till they met the sides of my nose. I took the same angled brush and began to line the sides of my nose, stopping near the inner corner. From here, I blended the product inward, keeping the intensity near the brows. This contouring is what created the drama in Johanna's look.

Moving onto the shadows, I used a flat shader brush and packed "Lucky Charms" onto the lower half of my lid. Then, I wiped off my brush and took "Socialite" from where "Lucky Charms" ended, up to the brow. "Lucky Charms" is a very true, shimmery green, and "Socialite" is a beautiful copper shimmer, both of which are perfect for this look. After I applied "Socialite," I went back in with "Lucky Charms" and patted it over the line between it and "Socialite," to begin to blend it. All the shadows in this palette blend together beautifully, and "Socialite" and "Lucky Charms" are no exception. I made sure to also blend "Socialite" into the bridge contour, to create a seamless finish. Finally, I took "Glamazon" on the inner corners, as well as Rimmel's Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Liner in "Nude" on the lower waterline. 

From here, I had a choice. I could either do my face makeup and risk messing it up while doing the liner, or do my liner and risk messing it up when I did the face makeup. I felt that the face makeup would be easier to fix, so I applied my foundation with a flat foundation brush. I used the flat foundation brush today because I wanted to make sure to create a nice crisp highlight on the bridge of my nose. I concealed any blemishes or redness using my Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil, which I also used on the bridge of my nose for even more coverage. Then, I set it all with my Revlon Photo Ready Translucent Finisher, and contoured with my Inglot 358 Matte shadow. 

From here, it was time to tackle the liner. First, I used my Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner on a precision artist's brush to create the line on my upper lash line. I also used to it map out my "branches." I began my branches the way I would any other winged liner, only for this look, I brought it all the way up past my brows, and into my hairline. Then, I took my L'Oreal Carbon Black Lineur Intense and traced over the line, using short strokes. The key to creating the branches is short strokes, because you will drive yourself absolutely mad otherwise. Trust me, I tried. I used the photo of Jena Malone on the right to help find the right design of the branches, and I noticed that they followed the contours of her temple. 

Finally, the lashes. I honestly am not sure which lashes I used for this look, because they were in an older container with no label. However, I think they may have been the Ardell Fashion Lashes 102 Black, which I trimmed to create more of an accent lash. Johanna does not seem to be wearing heavy lashes on the inner corners, but they get thick and voluptuous on the outer corners. Any kind of accent lashes would be great for this look. I then used my lash curler to fuse the lashes with my natural lashes, and my Maybelline The Mega Plush Volum' Express Mascara on the inner corners and lower lashes, to keep them well-blended and naturally dramatic.

As for her lips, they look very natural, with a slight gold sheen. So I applied a lip balm, and dabbed Maybelline Eye Studio Color Tattoo Metal cream shadow in "Gold Rush" all over my lips, and I was done!

- d. 

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Katniss' Presidential Party Makeup

Happy holidays, everyone! Or should I say, happy Hunger Games!

As I said in a previous post, I have been fully obsessed with The Hunger Games series recently, and I've just started reading Mockingjay! I know, I'm super late joining on this, but I'm so excited to find out what happens next.

After watching "Catching Fire," I was so inspired by Katniss and Johanna's makeup looks. I even dyed my hair in a similar style to Johanna's because I am just SO obsessed! The makeup artists did a fantastic job with both Jennifer Lawrence and Jena Malone, and their costumes were absolutely to die for. When I watched "Catching Fire," I decided I had to do a mini-series based on their looks. I thought I would begin with the look Katniss wears at the end of the Victory Tour, at President Snow's party.

Part of the reason I decided to start off with this look is because it's party makeup! It's the holiday season, and I can't believe Christmas is tomorrow. This look could totally be adjusted for any kind of New Year's party. Imagine this look using like smoldering grays and silver glitter! It's dramatic, but don't be afraid to work it. 

First, I started off with my Ben Nye FX Bruise Cream Stack, using the brick red color as a base. I applied this in a thin layer all over my lid, but staying under the crease. Then I took a synthetic blending brush and blended out the edges of the product. I paid close attention to the outer corners, where I blended up and out to create a winged shape. 

Then, using my trusty Coastal Scents 252 Ultimate Palette, I picked up a matte red color on a flat shader brush and packed this color over the lid. Then I used the same synthetic blending brush from before and blended out the edges. To add a bit of dimension, I grabbed a darker red and mixed it with a warm purple shade, and took it through the crease.

Then I took a stiff shader brush and the NYX Glitter on the Go in the color Ruby and patted this carefully all over the lid. Unfortunately, this product has been discontinued, but you can use any red cosmetic glitter you can find. They are easily found just about anywhere, and a lot of brands have absolutely beautiful glitters. Make sure you are using cosmetic glitter though! Craft glitter can be dangerous for use around the eyes, as it can be thicker and sharper. When I applied this glitter, I used a tissue under the eye to help prevent the fall out from getting all over my face. When using glitter, you will get fall out, even if you are using a sticky base. The glitter I am using is a red-based glitter with beautiful golden orange flecks. 

Next, I took my Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in "Blackest Black" and created a very fine but very dramatic winged liner on my upper and lower lashline. I used a small precision artist's brush, so I could create a very thin line. I did the top liner first, then used that as my guide to creating the lower wing. I then took a cotton bud and cleaned up any mistakes. 

Using a clean synthetic angled brush and Ben Nye's Cream Color in "White," I very carefully began to fill in the space between the two wings. I also used this product in my lower water line, as well as under my brow to highlight. To set it, I wiped off my angled brush and used my translucent setting powder. Then, I used a shimmery white shadow and brought it through my inner corner to brighten up the whole look.

Katniss' face is absolutely glowing in this makeup. Jennifer Lawrence's makeup artists did an amazing job of making her skin look glowing and flawless. To achieve a similar effect, started with a moisturized face. I first applied my Too Faced Primed and Poreless Face Primer to really smooth everything out. Then, using my L'Oreal True Match Foundation in the shade C2 and the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush, I applied my foundation in a buffing motion, to get the fullest coverage from this foundation. Then, I used my Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer under my eyes, and my Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil to hide any blemishes or redness that the foundation didn't cover. Remember, the makeup artists would have been trying to make Katniss look absolutely flawless for her party in the Capitol! 

After I finished concealing, I used my mini Benefit Watt's Up Highlighter under my eyes and on the tops of my cheekbones, as well as on the high points of my face, such as the the center of my forehead, the bridge of my nose, my chin, and my cupid's bow. I used my finger to blend this product out, then took a stippling brush and applied a very light layer of my Revlon Photo Ready Translucent Finisher

I then took a small domed face brush and Inglot 358 Matte and contoured my cheeks. I also ran this product through my brows. It doesn't look like Jennifer Lawrence has much in her brows during this scene, but she always has much better brows than I do, so I decided to give my brows just a little extra definition. 

Her cheeks have a very soft pink glow to them, so I used blush side of the e.l.f. Studio Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in the color "St. Lucia" and applied this color to the apples of my cheeks, and blending it out. Then, I spritzed some of my Mac Fix+ to get rid of any powdery finish and to add an extra glow. 

Her lips are pretty nude, so all I did was apply some lip balm, and dabbed a tiny bit of a white shimmery shadow on the center of my lips.

Finally, the lashes! The lashes I used are not of any particular brand. I actually got them for super cheap on eBay! EBay is a great place to purchase lashes, because you can buy huge sets of them for less than $5. The lashes I used were super thick and dramatic, which I thought was perfect to complete this look.

Thanks for reading! I wanted to wish all of you a happy holiday, and I really hope that it is lovely for each and every one of you. Thank you so much for supporting me in these last couple months, and I hope you all have a wonderful new year! 

- d. 

ps. stay tuned for the next look -- Johanna in the elevator! 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

How I Clean/Disinfect My Makeup Brushes & DIY Brush Drying Rack

My brush cleansing routine is far from extraordinary. However, I still know a lot of people who spend $15-$20 on brush cleansers that don't last! For just a little more money, you can cleanse your brushes for more than a year, as opposed to a few months, and this routine will clean, condition, and disinfect your brushes.

Typically, for powder brushes, I recommend deep cleansing at least once a week. For foundation and concealer brushes, or really any brush that is used to apply liquid or cream products, I recommend deep cleansing after every use. Liquid and cream products are more likely to trap bacteria than powder products. When dirty brushes are applied to the face over and over again, they will spread dirt and bacteria, and can be a major cause of breakouts! 

To begin, I always lay out paper towels, simply as a holding place for my brushes before they are hung to dry. Then, I section out my brushes based on use. There is no particular reason for this, I just find it easier to manage that way. 

Extra virgin olive oil is the key to cleaning your brushes. Many people are scared of the word "oil." However, extra virgin olive oil has so many amazing uses, including being an amazing brush cleanser! It helps to break down even the toughest product buildup, as well as condition your brushes.

I've had this bottle for at least a year now, and still have plenty left. You can buy huge bottles of this in any grocery store, ranging in price from $3 to $20, depending on the size and quality. The bottle I have is from Costco, and has also been used for cooking. It has been very well loved.

I take just a little bit in my hand, and swirl in one brush at a time. You will instantly begin to see product coming out into the oil. I like to squeeze the bristles to try to get more product out of the brushes, but keep in mind, squeeze, don't wring. Don't twist the bristles to get the excess oil out. Squeeze, almost like you would a toothpaste tube. 

I usually repeat this with five or so brushes before moving onto the next step.

Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap is a "pure-castile" soap, which means that it is a vegetable oil-based soap. Again, here's that "oil" word. However, this soap cleans so deeply yet gently, and because of the organic oils, it doesn't strip the brush hairs of the oils they need to stay soft. No one likes prickly bristles on their face, especially around the delicate eye area! The soap I use is the Baby Mild Liquid Soap, and ranges in price from $3 to $60. My 16 oz bottle cost about $10 at my local Sprouts Market! You can use this locator on their website to find a bottle near you. Their website is fascinating, and talks all about the products and why they work. The best part is, there are absolutely no harsh detergents in this soap, making it safe for use just about anywhere. You can even use it to brush your teeth!

Anyway, enough blabbing about this product. The cool thing is that you only need a couple of drops to cover quite a few brushes. This stuff is potent. Again, just swirl your brush around in the soap, and rinse in warm water until you are no longer seeing suds.

Quick Tip: Make sure to avoid getting water above the ferrule. The ferrule is the metal piece that connects the bristles to the handle. Getting water into the ferrule can cause the wood to warp, or the glue to decay, both of which will lead to broken brushes. 

From here, I lay my brushes flat on the paper towels to soak up the excess water before moving onto my next bunch of brushes. You can always stop here, but there is still a chance of water leaking into the ferrule and ruining your brushes. To prevent this, you can always purchase a brush drying rack. Or, you can make you own with some clothespins and a hanger! 

To create your own brush drying rack, you will need clothespins, a wire flexible hanger, and a safe place to hang your brushes. You can also use chip clips, but wooden clothespins are so cheap and easy to get a hold of! I got mine in a pack of 50 at Target for $1.79. 

Assembling this drying rack is so quick and easy! First, I twisted the top of the hanger, so that the hanger would be parallel to the wall my brushes will be hanging near. I chose to hang my brushes on a towel bar in my bathroom, which sits about 3 to 4 inches away from the wall. 

Next, add the clothes pins! Face the mouth of the clothespin downward, and attach it to the hanger. You can add as many as you like, but I generally like to keep at least an inch between each brush. Then, place the brush handle into the mouth of the clothespin! You should be left with a little something like this:

Keep in mind that this may not work for brushes with thicker handles. For example, the clothespins were not big enough for my Real Techniques Expert Face Brush. If you have any larger-handled brushes, I suggest using chip clips instead. This works really well for kabuki brushes! Hanging your brushes upside down will also speed up the drying process, all thanks to gravity. 

Now, before you use your brushes, you need to make sure that they are sanitized. I like to use tea tree oil to sanitize my brushes. Tea tree oil is an essential oil that is poisonous to ingest, so do NOT eat it, and do not get it in your eyes! I can tell you from personal experience that tea tree oil in your eyes is extremely painful. However, when diluted with purified water, it has been used for many different cosmetic purposes. In fact, my beloved Cosmetic Warrior mask from Lush contains tea tree oil! I purchased mine at Target, but it can also be picked up at your local drug store. 

Tea tree oil is known for its antibacterial properties, but because it is an essential oil, it will not dry out your brush hairs like an alcohol-based antiseptic would. 

To create your tea tree oil brush disinfectant, you will need a small spray bottle. You can pick one up at just about any drug store. I suggest checking the travel section. Fill your bottle with purified water. The rule of thumb for creating this disinfectant is, know how many ounces your bottle contains! For each ounce of water, add one drop of tea tree oil. Only one drop per ounce, meaning, if you have an 8 oz bottle, only use 8 drops. 

After you have properly filled your spray bottle, close it tightly and shake. Mist the mixture onto your bristles and you're ready to use your freshly cleaned brushes! 

- d. 

Friday, December 13, 2013

DIY How To -- Mason Jar Candles from Recycled Candle Wax

Let's be honest. Candles are not cheap, and often times, you run out of wick before you run out of wax. Sure, you can use a candle warmer, but those can get a bit pricey. I absolutely love my Leaves candle from Bath & Body Works, and I feel a bit cheated every time I run out of wick prior to running out of the amazingly scented wax.

Mason jar candles are a cheap and easy solution!

For this project, you will need the following supplies:

  • Any candle that you want to salvage
  • A mason jar
  • Candle wicks with attached anchor
  • A pot deep enough to hold the entire candle

When I did this project, I used an 16 oz mason jar and 3.5 inch candle wicks, both purchased at my local Michael's. Mason jars can be found in many different stores -- anywhere from the grocery store to Walmart. However, Michael's was the only place where I could find single mason jars, for about $1.50. Candle wicks can be found at your local arts and crafts store, and I only paid $3 for my set of 12. As you can see in the photo, I already have some wax in the jar. I had two Leaves candles that I wanted to combine to create another candle. If you are only trying to salvage one candle, I would suggest using a 4 or 8 oz jar instead. 

Now that you know what you need, let's get started!

First thing's first. Fill up your pot about halfway with water, then place it on the stove on high heat. You will need to wait for the water to begin to boil. 

While you wait for the water to boil, take a strong knife and begin cracking the wax in your used candle. I would suggest sticking the knife directly into the wax and twisting. It doesn't have to be perfect. The cracks will just allow the heat to penetrate the wax more quickly.

Once your water is boiling, carefully place your candle into the water, and turn down your stove to medium heat. This will keep the water from boiling over. You may be wondering, "Why don't you just microwave the candle?" Well here is my answer! Candle wicks have a metallic anchor that is attached to the glass, in order to keep the wick in place. Because of this metallic anchor, the microwave will begin to spark. In extreme cases, your microwave can explode, but regardless, it's a dangerous thing to play with, and you may end up simply breaking your microwave. 

As your candle sits in the boiling water, it will begin to look a little bit like this:

See that melting? At this point, bring your stove to low heat, and then you can gently stick your knife back into the wax to start breaking it up again. This will speed up the melting process. The great thing about this method is that the boiling water will not only melt the wax, but also the glue that holds the wicks into the jar and the glue on the labels, making clean-up significantly easier. 

Once your wax is completely melted, turn off your stove, and use an oven mitt or thick towel and carefully remove the jar from the water. I cannot stress enough how important it is to be careful and protected! You can easily burn yourself, so please, be cautious. After you remove the candle from the water, slowly pour the melted wax into your mason jar. 

From here, you can place in your wick. There is no real method to how to place your wick, just adjust until you are happy with its placement! Make sure that the anchor is flat before you put the wick into the wax, otherwise you will not have a steady base for the wick as it burns. 

If you would like to recycle the jars your candles originally came in, take the same knife we used earlier and scrape the wick anchor from the bottom of the candle jar. It should come off pretty easily, since it has been melted by the boiling water. The labels on the candle should also slide off easily. If you are left with any sticky residue, take a cotton ball and some tea tree oil, and the stickiness will come off almost immediately! From here, just wash out the jar and you now have some new small storage containers! These are great for storing things like cotton buds, cotton balls, lip balms, pens, rings, earrings, etc.

The quickest way to solidify your new candle is to let it set for ten minutes. After ten minutes, fill up a bowl with cool water, and place your candle into the water. You will notice the wax will begin to set almost instantly. Be careful when doing this, because if you place the warm glass into the cold water too quickly, it may cause the glass to shatter. When it's all set, it should look a bit like this!

Don't forget to cut the wick down so that it can properly burn the wax. I cut my wick down to about 1/4 of an inch. 

This is a super easy project that only takes about half an hour to do, and it's a great money saver. Bath & Body Works 3-Wick Candles normally go for $20 each, but recycling candles by using mason jars is a great way to save a candle, and save a buck! 

- d. 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Face and Nails of the Day -- Dramatic Cut Crease, Vampy Lips, and Nails on Fire.

Happy Monday!

Today, I had the weirdest shift at work, but because of the time that I was scheduled, I had plenty of time to play around with makeup, and today, I came up with this look:

Dramatic makeup is a great way to make any Monday a little less drab. It's always important to remember that if you are going to do a bold lip, neutrals on the eye are important. Neutral eye makeup doesn't have to be synonymous with boring, simple, or "every day." In this look, I used a shimmery taupe and a matte black to create this neutral cut crease.

The key to this look is BLENDING. I wanted to have a sharp edge on the outer corner, to create a cat eye effect, but I also wanted to offset it with a beautiful smokey effect as the shadow neared the brow bone.

For this look, I used my trusty Coastal Scents 252 Ultimate Palette, the Rimmel London Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in "Nude", and my favorite translucent powder, Revlon Photo Ready Translucent Finisher.

Using a flat shader brush, I applied the shimmery taupe color all over the lid, careful not to go into the crease. Then, I used a MAC 217 brush to apply my translucent powder in the crease, up to the brow bone. This will help the black color blend a little easier. I then took a small pencil brush and carefully applied the matte black color to the outer corner, as well as through the crease. I created a V shape with this color, on the outer corners of my eyes. That is what creates the cat eye effect. Then, taking my MAC 217 again, I began blending away. 

Quick Tip: Use your face powder on a fluffy blending brush to help blend any harsh lines. Your face powder on a stiffer brush will also act as a bit of an eraser. 

After I finished blending my crease color, I felt that the taupe color was losing vibrancy, so I again took a flat shader brush and reapplied the color to my lid. From here, I used my Milani Liquid Eye Eye Pencil in "01 - Black" and smudged this along my upper lash line, being careful to get in between all the lashes. The great thing about this liner is that you have plenty of time to smudge it out, but once it sets, it has great staying power. I also used this to create a small wing on my outer corner, then blended it into the V shape using a pencil brush. 

If your outer corner V isn't sharp enough, take a makeup wipe and clean up the line!

After I decided I was happy with how it looked,  I used my Rimmel London Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in "Nude" to highlight under the brow bone and in my inner corner. I blended this pencil and then set it with my translucent powder. Then, I topped off my lashes with a few coats of my favorite Maybelline The Mega Plush Volum' Express Mascara.

After this, I moved onto the lips. 

I took an angled brush and applied the tiniest amount of the OCC Lip Tar in "NSFW" all over my lips. Then, I wiped off my brush, and took a dark, warm-toned purple and applied this to the corners of my mouth. This added an ombre effect to the lips that add an extra vampy punch. Don't be afraid to be heavy handed with the purple. After I had the corners to my liking, I applied a light coat of the Maybelline Color Sensational Color Elixir in "Signature Scarlet" to help blend together any harsh lines created between the lip tar and the purple shadow. 

When I finished with the lips, I went back in and applied my foundation and brows. The same routine as usual:  Too Faced Primed and Poreless face primer, L'Oreal True Match Foundation in the shade C2,  Inglot 358 Matteand my Ardell Brow Sculpting Gel. I also went in under the eyes with the Rimmel London Wake Me Up Concealer in Very Fair, and used a flat concealer brush to help define the cat eye shape even more. Then I topped it all off with my Revlon Photo Ready Translucent Finisher

I used my Inglot 358 Matte shadow as my contour shade, which I ran in the hollows of my cheeks, around the jawline, and on the sides of my nose. Then I used my Morphe 10 Color Blush Palette to create a subtle flush to the cheeks. 

In the pan, this color looks very brown. However, when applied, it creates a beautiful, natural glow.

And, as always, I finished everything off with my Mac Fix+!

Now, onto the nails! 

I've been super into The Hunger Games recently, hence the title "Nails on Fire." But I found this polish at Walmart last night and am completely in love. I only wish the photos could do it justice. It's the Rimmel London Lasting Finish Pro Nail Lacquer in the color "Lava Red." It's just this amazing, almost holographic oxblood shade and I am so, so in love. In certain lights, it appears almost brown, and in others, very purple. But in direct light, it is so beautiful and almost indescribable. I wish I knew how to better describe this polish, because it is to die for. And for a little over $3? A total steal. 

- d. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

November Favorites!

It's time for another favorites post! I can't believe it's December already. I am so not ready for Christmas and college applications. I'm so glad it's finally cooling down here in Southern California, though, because we had hot weather for way too long this year.

Let's get started!

Rimmel London Wake Me Up Concealer -- Very Fair. I absolutely love this concealer. Anyone who knows me has known that I have loved the Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Dark Circle Eraser for a very, very long time, but I have always disliked the packaging. It has always seemed extremely unsanitary to me, despite the "antimicrobial" sponge applicator. But, with this Rimmel Concealer, I don't feel like I'm applying germs and bacteria all over my face, while still getting great coverage with its fantastic, gel-like consistency. It goes on so smoothly, and I feel like it's actually quite hydrating as well. I have really dry skin around my eyes, so any kind of drying product just feels itchy and uncomfortable for my undereye area. This concealer hides any dark circles I may have, without creasing or settling, the way most heavier concealers would. I feel like it's a UK blogger favorite, and I really wish that Rimmel London would send the Wake Me Up Foundation our way! 

The next two products should come as no surprise...

L'Oreal Color Riche Nail Color -- Charmed, I'm Sure. I have worn this nail polish for most of the month of November. I absolutely love it, and I am so glad that now I can rock the rose gold trend! It is such an opaque color, and it lasts really well. I'm so hard on my hands, and it lasts about a week on my nails. Two coats and I'm out the door! The best part is, it's opaque without being overly thick, meaning it dries quickly!

Maybelline Color Sensational Color Elixir -- Mauve Mystique. This is the most easy-going lip color I have ever owned. I am not the biggest fan of lip glosses because I don't like the stickiness that a lot of them have, but this product is just so hydrating and smooth. I love the color because it makes my lips look natural, yet plump, and it definitely gives a "my lips but better" look. My lips always feel hydrated after taking this product off, something I rarely notice from an ordinary lip gloss. It smells like boba, too! 

Lush Fresh Face Mask -- Cosmetic Warrior. Cosmetic Warrior is my savior. I have loved this mask for a long time, but this month I discovered just how much I love it all over again. I don't typically get acne, but I have been really stressed out this month, since it's college application season and everything. And when I stress, I break out. I get a lot of cystic acne, which can be such a pain to get rid of, and it so often just makes me feel like my face is dirty, even if it is hormonal acne. This face mask is a lifesaver! It smells strongly of tea tree oil, however, it works like a charm. When I use this mask, I notice the life of my acne is significantly shorter, which makes for happy skin!

Soap & Glory Flake Away Body Polish. This body scrub is just so good. It really invigorates your skin, leaving it soft and smooth. It has both sea salt and sugar, meaning it gives you an amazing exfoliating experience, and it makes you feel so clean after you've used it. And of course, it has the amazing classic Soap & Glory smell that I love! It has really saved my body, since colder weather is so rarely seen in my part of the world. It feels luxurious every single time I use it, and my skin always feel amazing when I'm done! 

Bath & Body Works Anti-Bacterial Deep Cleansing Hand Soap -- Fresh Pick Scarlet Pumpkin. I hate to talk about this product because Bath & Body Works no longer sells it, but I am so in love with this scent that I am going to anyways! This is a hand soap from this year's fall collection, and I really hope they bring it back next year. Bath & Body Works got it so right with all their pumpkin scents this year, and I linked all of their current pumpkin products above. It is such a beautiful, rich pumpkin smell, and I just recently put it in my bathroom, but I loved it so much I had to post about it! Sometimes, after washing my hands, I just enjoy bringing my hands up to my nose and smelling them, because that's just how good this hand soap is. I hope they bring this back next year!

- d. 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

How To: Bold Winged Liner and My Top 5 Tips!

Today, as I was doing my makeup for work, I decided to go with a matte, neutral eye, and a bold winged liner. As I was applying my eyeliner, I thought about how many people have asked me just how I get it so perfect! So I decided that today I'd write a post explaining how I do my winged liner, and my top 5 tips on perfecting your winged liner. 

First things first, for today's look I used my Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in "Blackest Black," which is a great gel liner. I've had a lot of gel liners that have dried out on me long before I was done with the pot, but this liner lasts for so much longer than any other ones that I have tried! It glides on so smoothly and is perfect for this bold look.

The next important thing to take into consideration is, "What kind of brush should I use?" Well, that's up to you. For me, it depends on the day and what I feel like using. Today, I decided to use a push liner brush, so I could get really close to the lash line. But you could use a push liner brush, and angled liner brush, a precision liner brush, or even an artist's brush if you want!

One of the keys to successfully creating a winged liner is to remember your basic shapes. Winged liner is JUST a glorified triangle! That sounds so much less scary, doesn't it? 

In the top photo, I show the three points where you should "connect the dots," and in the bottom photo, I show what your triangle should look like. Of course, for every eye shape this is going to be slightly different. I personally keep my angle in line with my lower lash line, but you can adjust this however you feel works best for your shape. Decide what angle you want for your liner, and, using short strokes, connect the dots. Once you have your triangle, fill it in! At this step, I don't have liner on the rest of my lash line yet. After I filled in my little triangle, I used my push liner brush to gently wiggle in between my lashes and create a thin line. From here, gently build up the line with short strokes until it is as thick as you like!

Don't be afraid to make a mistake. The great thing about makeup is that it can be removed easily with some makeup remover and a cotton bud. Keep this in mind while drawing your liner, and don't worry if you color outside the lines. It can easily be erased! Once I have the liner to my liking, I always run either concealer or a nude liner under the wing. Lately, I have been loving my Rimmel London Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in "Nude" for this step. It's so easy to just draw a line under the wing, and it creates a crisp line. Just don't forget to blend the nude color!

So what are my top five tips for creating the perfect winged liner?
  1. Gel liners are typically easier to work with than liquid liners. If you are a beginner at winged liner, I would recommend using a gel liner and an angled brush.
  2. Don't forget your basic shapes! Remember: winged liner is just a triangle.
  3. Use a nude liner or a concealer and a small brush to clean up the line and to keep it nice and crisp.
  4. Short strokes are a must. Your face is not a flat surface, and you will never be able to draw a straight line in one quick go.
  5.  If you make a mistake, DON'T PANIC! Mistakes are easy to fix with makeup remover and a cotton bud. Don't be afraid to go back and clean up lines. This will keep your makeup looking clean and polished.
Just remember, winged liner takes practice and precision. Over time, it will get easier, so be patient. Don't be too hard on yourself if you don't get it the first time. Practice makes perfect, and soon enough you'll be perfectly achieving this incredible fall/winter trend!

- d.  

Friday, November 22, 2013

Face and Outfit of the Day -- Job Interview Edition

So today, I had my second interview at Sephora (woo hoo!)

I thought that, because Sephora is such a fun place for makeup, I would show you the makeup I wore for the interview, as well as the outfit (which is significantly less exciting, but it may help some of you who are looking for some good professional attire!)

I'll start with my outfit.

We'll go from head to toe! My headband is from Icing. I bought it a few holiday seasons ago so I'm sure they don't have it anymore, but it's just a simple bow headband. It is pretty similar to this headband, though, which is also from Icing. Around my neck is my beloved bow necklace that I actually haven't worn in quite some time. I got it from eBay, a few years ago, and can still be found here! It is a gorgeous gunmetal color, and the photos online definitely do not do it justice. My shirt is a basic black t-shirt from H&M, which is tucked into a slitted pencil skirt from Target. This is another one of those items that I bought quite some time ago and is no longer available at Target, but black pencils skirts are a staple and can be found just about anywhere! My shoes are also from Target, and definitely aren't as cute in the picture as they are on my feet! Plus, they are SO comfy, and wear really well. I tend to walk with my toes up (from a few good years of marching I assume), so a lot of shoes wear out around my toes really quickly. My belt is the same belt I wore in my last OOTD, which actually belongs to my best friend, so I am not sure where it's from.

My nails were inspired by +leighannsays, and I used my L'Oreal Color Riche Nail Color in "Eiffel For You" with my N.Y.C. Longwearing Nail Enamel in "Plaza Plumberry" for the triangle accent. It's the first time I've ever done a manicure like this, so it's anything but perfect, but I think it turned out pretty well for a first time try! 

The look I wore today was definitely a fall-inspired look, with some oranges and wine colors. Unfortunately, my camera was going crazy today and didn't seem to want me to be able to get a very good photo of it. Also, please excuse my crazy hair. I am in desperate need of a good hair mask. 

First, I used my Too Faced Primed and Poreless face primer, and over that, my L'Oreal True Match Foundation in the shade C2. Then I went straight into the brows, with Inglot 358 Matte and my Ardell Brow Sculpting Gel (not pictured). Then, I ran my Rimmel London Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal in "Nude" to help shape and define my brows just a bit more. Then, I applied my Urban Decay Primer Potion (not pictured) to help my shadows stay put. Then I went in with my Coastal Scents 252 Ultimate Palette

This palette comes with three tiers of shadows: one with cools tones, one with neutral tones, and one with warm tones. I used the warm tier, and applied a shimmery peach color on the inner third of my lid. I then took a matte plum color and rocked it in my socket as well as the outer corner, being careful to blend it out really well. I then used a bright matte orange to add an extra pop of color on the center of my lids, as well as a matte brown to deepen the plum in my outer corner. I also ran the shimmery peach color along the inner corner. 

After applying my eyeshadows, I went back in with my Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in "Blackest Black" and created a defined winged liner. It's a bit difficult to see in the picture, unfortunately. I then took my nude Rimmel pencil and ran it in the lower waterline, as well as under the wing to give it some extra definition. 

After all this was applied, I went in with my new holy grail concealer, the Rimmel London Wake Me Up Concealer in Very Fair. I applied this to the undereye area, as well as down the bridge of my nose to add a bit of highlight. This concealer is amazing for my dry-combination skin. I then went in and powdered with my Revlon Photo Ready Translucent Finisher, and contoured with the same Inglot powder I used on my brows. On my cheeks, I used my favorite blush (of all time), Wet 'n Wild Color Icon Blusher in "Mellow Wine," and on my lips, my Wet 'n Wild Megalast Lip Color in "Sugar Plum Fairy." Finally, I used my Maybelline The Mega Plush Volum' Express Mascara. And of course, I spritzed some Mac Fix+ to add a lovely finish to the skin!

- d. 

p.s. in case you were wondering, I got the job!

Monday, November 18, 2013

L'Oreal Color Riche Nail Color Update

About ten days ago, I posted about the two new Color Riche Nail Colors that I bought. They make a claim that the polish lasts 10 days, and I decided to put it to the test.

Okay, so I didn't really put it to the test, because my nail OCD unfortunately didn't allow me to. However, since that post, I have tried both shades that I purchased, "Eiffel For You" and "Charmed, I'm Sure." I can certainly say that "Eiffel For You" has impressed me. It is a gorgeous taupe creme color that is perfect for fall. It goes on so smoothly, and I wore it for 5 days before it started to barely chip. The chipping in the polish was barely noticeable and rather minor, but I had a job interview on what would have been the 6th day, so I removed the polish and in it's place applied two coats of "Charmed, I'm Sure," which is the rose gold polish I purchased.

In the photo, it doesn't quite appear as a rose gold, and that's because it's definitely a bit of a nude rose gold. It is much pinker in person than in photos, but it is absolutely gorgeous. I have said countless times that I look awful in rose gold, and I always wished I could jump on board with this trend, and now I finally can! 

Unfortunately, it isn't quite as opaque as "Eiffel For You." It does apply a bit unevenly, and I almost feel that two coats isn't enough for full coverage. It also definitely highlights the awful ridges in my nails, something that creme polishes typically don't do. However, this polish also lasted 5 days before it began to slightly chip. This time, I felt I was ready for a good manicure anyway, and took it off. But right after I was done with my nail regimen, I reapplied "Charmed, I'm Sure" all over again. It's definitely a gorgeous color and I'm so excited to finally be able to jump on board with this trend!

I think the #1 thing for me is that it lasts about a week before starting to chip. The reason I don't wear polish often is that I don't like having to deal with it after a couple of days when it has already begun to chip. L'Oreal's Color Riche Nail Color line is definitely a low maintenance nail color that comes in a huge variety of colors, and I definitely would recommend trying it out!

- d. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

REVIEW: Maybelline Color Sensational Color Elixir

Time for a quick review!

I recently saw this advertisement for the Maybelline Color Sensational Color Elixir, while watching Once Upon a Time with +Andrew, and when we saw the commercial, we could not stop laughing. Cosmetic commercials will always be hilarious to me. Regardless, I was intrigued. They described it as a "creamy lip lacquer." Personally, I love lip lacquers. I love the longevity of them, in comparison to lipsticks or glosses, and I love the pigmentation in them. So this commercial instantly made me curious to try them!


This is the model from the Maybelline website in the color "Signature Scarlet." The website reads, "Fall under the spell of the elixir effect...Hyper-saturated color, ultra cushiony feel...The new hypnotic lip sensation." 
A few days after seeing the commercial, I ran out to my local Walmart and purchased two of them -- one in "Signature Scarlet" and one in "Mauve Mystique."

There are 20 shades in the collection, ranging from nudes, to purples, to bright reds, and even a couple of orange and coral shades. I purchased "Signature Scarlet" because I'm always on the lookout for a good red, and the color in the picture was amazing. 

Today, I wore it out for the first time!

I must say, the opacity of this is phenomenal. I was absolutely shocked. It was so smooth, vibrant, and non-sticky. Sticky lipglosses are the #1 reason I don't typically wear lipgloss. I have noticed that this product doesn't swatch very well, but for some reason, it glides so beautifully on the lips. This red is a glossy, cool-toned red, and the mauve color is defined by "my lips but better." The colors do stain, so they are somewhat longwearing. In terms of full-on vibrancy, though, they last about 2 hours (if you aren't eating or drinking) before they being to fade. This is coming from someone who has an anxious habit of lip biting. 

Something I really loved about this product, though, is that when I took it off, my lips actually felt smoother. The commercial claims that it has an "addictive cushiony feel of a balm." I totally agree with that. After putting it on for the first time, I just kept rubbing my lips together and wanted to put on more and more product because it felt so nice and smooth when applied. 

Now for the negatives. This is a messy product. If you plan to wear this, bring a mirror with you to check for feathering and smears, because it will do both of those things. I am curious to see if using a lip pencil will help the feathering, but you do need to keep an eye on it if you are wearing it. 

All-in-all, I'd say this is a great product. It feels so nice when applied, and creates a beautiful, pigment-rich lip look. 

- d.