Month: December 2013

Top 5: Ways to Wear Glitter for New Years

If there’s ever a perfect occasion for lots of twinkly glitter, it’s definitely New Year’s Eve! And fortunately, there’s plenty of adorable ways to work the look. There’s bound to be something for everyone, ranging from subtle to over the top. Also, what’s great about this look is that it’s pretty affordable! So, in no particular order, here are five great ways to work the glitter this year.

5) On Your Clothes:
This is a style that has a ton of options: One could go big by making a statement by wearing a shimmering party dress, or go for a smaller dose of impact by rocking a glittery clutch, pair of shoes, or an accessory, such as a watch or sparkling necklace. This party dress from Forever 21, for example, will only set you back $29.80 USD.

Image via Forever 21

4) On Your Cheeks:
Most beauty junkies are already fans of a nice cheekbone highlighter. But for NYE, a little extra shimmer is perfect for dim evening parties. Bobbi Brown Shimmer Bricks are famous for their anything but subtle sparkle (they’re $42 USD).
Image via Sephora

3) On Your Lips:
Gloss is the perfect thing to wear for a fun night out, since it’s lots of fun and doesn’t have to wear too long. They can also be worn alone, or over lipstick/lip liner. Chanel Glossimers ($29.50 USD) are quite famous for their radiance, with certain shades being truly sparkly. 
Image via Nordstrom

2) On Your Nails:
Having bejeweled tips is a great, softer way to rock the glittery look for a longer period of time. There are a slew of different textures, shapes, and sizes, not to mention shades and price ranges, of fantastic glitter polishes. I’m particularly fond of China Glaze’s This is Tree-Mendous, which I’m rocking right now (it’s LE, but only $7.50 USD and in stores now).

1) On Your Eyes:
One of the most fun ways to rock playful glitter is to put it on your eyes. For such a limited space, there’s a lot one can do with her eye makeup, and brands are accommodating us with multiple glittery products. Take for example OCC’s Cosmetic Glitters ($14 USD), which would look great all over the lid, or Urban Decay’s Heavy Metal Glitter Liners ($19 USD), which would make for a fierce spin on the already sexy cat eye.

Both images from Sephora


How are you planning on rocking glitter this NYE?

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Holiday FOTDs!

So, as many people know, it was recently Christmas! And what that often means is a series of social get-togethers, where even the tamer cosmetics fans are in the spirit to break out some glitz and glitter. Always a fan of color, here’s what I rocked on Christmas Eve and the main event, respectively.
Christmas Eve FOTD:

This is my own photo.


-Avon Brow Pencil
Wet ‘n’ Wild 8-Pan Palette in “Blue Had Me At Hello”
Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Radium
-Maybelline the Falsies Mascara
Benefit They’re Real! Mascara
Christmas Day FOTD:

This is my own photo.


-Wet ‘n’ Wild 8-Pan Palette in “I Heart Matte”
-Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Perversion

What products did you wear over the Holidays? Did you keep it natural, or did you add some glitz to your look this year?

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Pantone’s Color of the Year 2014: Radiant Orchid!

Image via Pantone

It was recently announced via Pantone’s Twitter that 2014’s Color of the Year will be Radiant Orchid! This is very exciting, because purple is one of my favorite colors. I also believe different shades of purple can look beautiful and flattering on every skin tone, and there’s endless ways to wear the shade. And luckily for us cosmetic junkies, there’s iterations of this shade of tremendous quality at all price points. Below are some purple products to get you in the Radiant Orchid spirit (in order of ascending price):
Wet ‘n’ Wild Color Icon 8-Pan Palette in Petal Pusher:

Image via Drugstore

This gorgeous palette comes with a range of purple shades. Stocked at most drugstores, it should be easy to find, and isn’t hard on the wallet, either. $4.99 USD.
Revlon Lip Butter in Gumdrop:

Image via CVS

The famous line of hydrating lipsticks has an adorable lavender shade. Read the review here. $7.49 USD
Essie Nail Polish in Lilacism:

Image via CVS

A darling in the cosmetic world ever since it’s release, Essie’s Lilacism is the perfect light purple shade for the spring time. $8.50 USD.
MAC Lipstick in Heroine:

Image via Allure

I remember this shade selling out in moments after it’s limited-edition release. However, MAC smartly added the popular shade to it’s permanent range, just in time for orchid’s big moment in 2014. $15 USD.
Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar in Hoochie:

Image via Sephora

OCC’s lip tars are fantastic, especially since they’ve managed to tame the drying effects of the matte formula. The shade Hoochie is bound to get you noticed in style. $18 USD.
Make Up For Ever Powder Blush in Lavender 9:

Image via Sephora

MUFE is a quality brand that I can rely on for unusual shades, like purple blush, in a top notch formula. $21 USD.
NARS Eyeshadow Duo in Jolie Poupee:

Image via Sephora

NARS duos are famous for their exceptional quality and stylish shade pairings. This pretty purple compact is right on trend for next year. $34 USD.
What do you think of Pantone selecting Radiant Orchid as 2014’s Color of the Year? Do you like it better than Emerald (2013) and Tangerine Tango (2012)? What products do you plan on using to rock this shade? Let me know!

Wet ‘n’ Wild, Revlon, and Essie products are available at Drugstores.
MAC products are available at department stores and online at maccosmetics.com
OCC, Make Up For Ever, and NARS products are available at Sephora.

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Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Perversion Review

Image via Sephora

Urban Decay often boasts it’s eyeshadows as being the product they do best, but I have to disagree. I feel it’s in fact their liners that they consistently, effortlessly do well, with amazing shade range, a formula that can’t be beat, and a price that doesn’t quite break the bank. Their 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils have a well earned reputation for being fantastic, and the “matte blackest black,” Perversion, didn’t disappoint me. 
In fact, it’s the blackest eyeliner I own. It’s darker than it’s cousin Zero, as well as it’s sister shadow, Perversion, which has since been discontinued.
Perversion goes onto the lash line creamy and smoothly, without pulling or tugging. It was super dark in one pass. As the brand promises, the product stays smudgable for a few seconds before drying down. I like that the dry time isn’t so quick that you can’t fix a mistake, but it doesn’t require you to hang out with your eyelid closed waiting for it to dry either. 
Perversion rocked the wear time as well. After a full day (8 hours), I still had a crisp, pigmented black line in place. It didn’t smudge, run, or migrate at all. It still looked perfect at the end of the day, which is always great, especially for such a rich, creamy formula. 
UD’s pencils are colored to match the shade of the product, which is cute and functional (you can easily see and grab the one you’re looking for just by glancing at your drawer). In Perversion’s case, the whole pencil is colored matte black (usually, the caps and ends are silver), but the usual white lettering is still in place. I have a travel size version of this pencil, but the full size (0.04 oz) pencils are about average length-not stubby, not too long. I find these can be stored upright in a cup, or flat in a drawer, whichever method suits you.The travel size, as the name implies, are a great option for travel, due to their smaller size.
UD’s pencils retail for $19 USD. This is the same value as MAC Pro Longwear pencils-the price and amount of product are the same. UD has a far more vast shade range, though (with 40 options to choose from-Perversion is one of three blacks in their range). While these pencils aren’t the cheapest on the market, I truly believe they’re the best, and sometimes, it’s better to fork over a few extra dollars for superior quality. 
Perversion is an everyday kind of shade, so it won’t win any originality points, but it does it’s job well. It goes on easily and darkly, without a lot of passing back and forth, which means less product waste (although creamy pencils like this are prone to some waste when met with the sharpener). Perversion works for both day looks and as an accent or base to a nighttime smoky eye, so it’s versatile. And of course, every girl, of every age and skin color could use a black liner. 
Urban Decay retains it’s cruelty free status, and so far, does not sell in countries where animal testing is mandated by law. However, they were recently purchased by L’Oreal, a brand that is notorious for it’s unashamed animal testing stance. Those who are fiercely against animal testing may want to reconsider giving their money to a brand whose parent uses profits from UD sales potentially for animal testing.
Color: 4.5/5

Wear: 5/5
Formula: 5/5
Packaging: 5/5
Price: 5/5
Wow Factor: 4.5/5
Overall: 4.8 (A)
Recommend: Absolutely. Anyone looking for a quality, basic black liner should look here. Perversion works across all skin types and occasions, be it daytime or evening. It’s the blackest black I’ve tried, and will likely get a lot of use and love, so I think $19 for a frequently used, quality product is definitely worth it.

Urban Decay products are available at department stores, online via their own site, as well as cosmetic retailers such as Ulta and Sephora.

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China Glaze This is Tree-Mendous Review

Image via Amazon

The second polish I was fortunate enough to try from China Glaze’s Happy Holiglaze Collection is the green and gold sandy glitter, This is Tree-Mendous. And it really is a fantastic shade. As I mentioned in my Be Merry, Be Bright review, I have next to no experience with glitter polishes. But I’m pleased to say that both my experiences with CG’s glitters have been positive. While green may not immediately jump to mind as a traditional holiday color, I found that once this was on the nail, it made total sense. It’s a medium light green and gold glitter that looks like tinsel on the nails. It’s beautiful.
The consistency of this polish is a bit watery, but I found it didn’t negatively impact application. The glitter spread evenly over the nail without really having to fiddle with it. However, to get opaque coverage, I found three coats to be necessary. It gives you options, though. You could do a coat or two over another polish as an accent, or go for three and wear it on it’s own. The polish dried down to a sandy textured finish, which could still be felt even after applying a top coat. I didn’t mind this, though. I thought it was pretty cool. It didn’t take forever to dry, either. I was ready to go after just a minute or two. I had no issues with this pulling or pooling, either.
The wear on this polish was okay. I found that after five days, I had a sizable chip on one index finger, with tip wear on the remaining fingers. Five days is alright by me, since I have very weak nails (and change my polish weekly, anyway). But I believe five days isn’t good enough to many, and those seeking more long-term wear could be disappointed by the longevity this polish offers.  

China Glaze polishes come in 0.5oz tapered glass bottles with long, rubberized handles. The handle is particularly great, as it won’t slip, and is neither too small or too cumbersome for all types of fingers to efficiently use. The brush is average-long enough to coat the nail and not particularly wide-but it performs well, without splaying, streaking, or otherwise being difficult. While these polishes are some of the larger ones I own, they’re not hard to store, in spite of their wider bottom.

I was pleased to see the holiday collection of polishes being sold for $7.50 USD, which is the same price as their permanent range. China Glaze’s formula is always 3-free, and I’ve never tried one I didn’t like. The formula always does well. This is great because their products are salon quality and unique, while actually being some of the most affordable polishes in my collection (cheaper than both Essie and OPI). This brand may be a bit more difficult to find, as it’s not available in drugstores, but beauty supply shops and Ulta. are known to carry them.

Color: 5/5
Wear: 4/5
Formula: 4/5
Packaging: 5/5
Price: 5/5
Wow Factor: 4.5/5
Overall: 4.6 (A-)
Recommend: Absolutely. This is Tree-Mendous is a great polish that’ll work for both the holidays and warmer months. It can be used as a layering polish as well as on it’s own, wears decently, and is affordable without a lot of harsh chemicals.

China Glaze polishes can be found at beauty supply stores and Ulta. medianet_width=’600′; medianet_height= ‘250’; medianet_crid=’228266391′;

Get the Look: Demi Lovato’s January 2014 Nylon Cover

Image via JustJared

Demi Lovato balanced out her colorful hair and wardrobe with simple, natural makeup for her January 2014 Nylon magazine cover. Her makeup artist for the shoot, Georgie Eisdell, used products from Sephora’s house brand, which, naturally, can be found at Sephora. 
1) Start by applying Jumbo 12hr Wear Waterproof in Beige all over the lids as a shadow base.

2) Pat the light brown shade in the Microsmooth Eyeshadow Trio in Natural Light all over the lid. Smudge the dark brown shade along the upper lash line.
3) Fill in the brows with Retractable Brow Pencil Waterproof in Midnight Brown.
4) Coat the lashes with Outrageous Volume Mascara in Ultra Black.
5) Add a faint flush to the cheeks with Colorful Blush in Icy Fuschia.
6) Finish the natural, mod look with Rouge Shine Lipstick in Honeymoon.


This issue of Nylon is on newsstands now! What do you think of Demi’s cover look? Would you rock this makeup?

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MAC Eyeshadow in Steamy Review

Image via Overstock

MAC Steamy eyeshadow is described as “bluish green with gold pearl.” This description isn’t totally wrong, but it’s not how I would categorize this shade. Rather, I found it to be a bright, frosty aqua. There is a bit of the blue-green going on, but there’s nothing gold about Steamy-in the pan, in a swatch, on the lid. There’s no gold shimmer-sheen to be found here. MAC did categorize this as a frost, which is very spot on though. While I don’t think anyone would put a bright blue shade as a brow highlight, I do think it can work as an “iridescent highlight” to the crease or as the pop of all-over lid color.
With primer, this applies so pigmented. Steamy also blends easily and had no application problems, like fallout or patchiness. Without a base, the pigmentation needed to be built up a little, and compared to when the shade is used with a base, it was less iridescent over bare lids.To the touch, it felt a bit dry and gritty, but went onto the lid very smoothly. With a brush, it didn’t have much powder kick-up.
I’m very happy to say that this shadow lasted all day when used with a base. It still looked freshly applied at the 8-hour mark. I experienced no fading, fallout, creasing, or migrating. I love a shadow that works all day! Without primer, this looked faded after an hour, but it didn’t fade any more beyond that one hour mark. 
MAC shadows are sold in round, black plastic pots with clear lids, with the brand’s logo written in black script over that clear window. The lid flips back on a hinge and snaps shut. The lid isn’t flimsy and feels secure when it’s closed. The packaging feels lightweight, but not cheap. The pan of product inside is about the size of a quarter. With some effort, the pan can be removed and the plastic packaging can be returned to the store for the Back to MAC program, where you can get a free lipstick when you return 6 empty plastic MAC containers. 
Conversely, one can purchase the shadow pan (without the plastic pot) by itself, intended for use in a magnetic palette, for $10 USD. This will save you a bit of money if you plan on using the shadow in a palette anyway, since the potted shadow runs $15 USD. MAC is what I call a “mid-range” brand (more expensive than drugstore, less expensive than prestige, luxury brands). These shadows contain 0.05 oz of product, which is $300 per ounce. This is cheaper than Urban Decay (which is $360 per ounce), but it’s still not in everyone’s budget. I think the quality of this shadow and it’s somewhat uniqueness make it a worthwhile investment if it seems a little out of your price range. It’s a great, long-wearing aqua that looks fantastic with greens. However, those highly concerned with avoiding animal tested products may want to look elsewhere. MAC products are not tested on animals, except “where mandated by law.”
Color: 4/5

Wear: 5/5
Formula: 4.5/5 
Packaging: 5/5
Price: 4.5/5
Wow Factor: 4/5
Overall: 4.5 (A-)
Recommend: Yes. I’m happy with my purchase of Steamy, because it’s long-wearing, easy to apply, and looks beautiful, but it lost points for it’s drier feel and less than unique coloring (while slightly nuanced, it’s more or less just a frosty aqua).

MAC products are available at department stores, and online at maccosmetics.com. medianet_width=’600′; medianet_height= ‘250’; medianet_crid=’228266391′;

MAC Eyeshadow in Humid Review

Image via eBay

Shopping for MAC products, especially when you’re new to the makeup sphere, can be a bit dizzying. On one of my first trips to MAC, I let my instincts guide me (I had a nearly nonexistent makeup collection, so I had nothing to lose, really). After some hours poring through all the beautiful colors, I went home with Humid, an “intense green with shimmer.” This shadow is a frost formula, which is designed to give “an iridescent highlight to any color.” While I don’t think anyone would highlight with a vibrant green, it still performs well, and fits the brand’s description.
Over primer, it went on super pigmented, as a dark, frosty hunter green. This isn’t a shadow where you have to dip your pan in the brush lots to build up acceptable color-two or three strokes in the pan is enough to give intense color. To the touch, it feels soft and smooth. Some powder gets kicked up in the pan with a brush, but the shadow itself doesn’t feel powdery. It blends easily and I experienced no fallout during application. While most of us consider a base a necessity, those who choose to forgo one won’t miss out on anything when applying Humid over bare lids. It had the same rich pigment, and no fallout, patchiness, or difficulty blending. It is a bit less iridescent without a base, though. 
As gorgeous as this shade is, I do have some dupes in my stash (which is, admittedly, not very large). Wet ‘n’ Wild Cool As a Cucumber’s eyelid shade is very similar. Also, Urban Decay Bender is an exact match.
I’m always happy to report that a shadow wears effortlessly, and Humid is one of those special shades. After 8 hours of wear, it still looked freshly applied-no fallout, creasing, or migrating, ever. And the truly impressive thing, again, is that it worked just as hard when a primer was not used. Most of us use primer to enhance our shadows and keep them wearing longer-and except for a smidgen of less iridescence, Humid performed nearly exactly the same, with or without a base. Impressive!
MAC shadows come in small, circular pots made of black plastic, with clear lids with the brand’s name written in black over that clear window. The shade name is written in grey text on the bottom. I’d say the pan of product itself is about the size of a quarter, so the surrounding plastic is only a bit larger. The tops of these are a bit rounded, so they don’t stack well on top of each other. But they do lay flat, and many organize MAC shadow pots on their side in trays. The plastic is sturdy enough that you could feel comfortable travelling with it, but not so durable that it could survive an accidental fall. And, as always, the product can be depotted and the metal pan of shadow can be inserted into a magnetized palette for smoother, more durable storage and travel.
MAC sells those palette-ready pans for $10 USD, which will save you some. But for those looking for just a few shades or don’t own a palette yet, the potted shadow will run you $15 USD. This price is in what I call the “mid-range”: more expensive than drugstore, less expensive than luxury brands. It’s definitely not a cost everyone is willing to pay. But if you’re looking for a beautiful dark green that performs fantastically, I can wholeheartedly recommend Humid at this price point. 
While MAC is a pretty affordable, quality brand with a lot of shade range and products that can work for all skin types and skin colors, some consumers may be unsatisfied still. That is because MAC is “cruelty free”-unless where mandated by law. Everyone has a different stance on animal testing, but for those who are more purist, this brand, sadly, will not meet your needs.
Color: 4.5/5

Wear: 5/5
Formula: 5/5
Packaging: 5/5
Price: 4.5/5
Wow Factor: 4.5/5
Overall: 4.75 (A)
Recommend: Absolutely! Humid is a fantastic green that would look great on nearly all skin tones and lasts forever. The color is a bit common, and some may find it expensive, but I believe the quality makes it completely worth it.

MAC products are available at standalone stores, counters in department stores, and online at maccosmetics.com

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