Archive for category Burberry
The New Year is almost upon us! Even though the number 13 conjures up some unsettling feelings, 2013 was kind of a great year for me! Though it started out a bit rough, with a lot of talking and support it turned around for me (a big thanks to all of you who sent kind words – and a care package! – my way!). As always, the hardships make the good times feel that much sweeter. I had the immense pleasure of standing in my friend’s most amazing wedding; I started dating a guy who makes me feel loved and truly content in a way I never have before; I’ve had the opportunity to work in several different positions at my work and found my niche; and I finally got to go to New York City, a long-standing dream of mine! Not too shabby 2013, not too shabby :)
Over the month of December I’ve been pondering what beauty products in my collection really stand-out and get the most use. Though I could probably add one or two more, the 13 items below really have rocked my world this year and have been very well-loved. I would even go so far to say that I would repurchase most of them (and that’s saying something!).
And so I present to you, my favourite (beauty) things of 2013:
1. Osha Mae Calendula Salve ($15CAD). On it’s own, without any cortisone products, this can clear up the chronic eczema on my hands overnight – absolutely unheard of! I first got hooked on a sample of M.J. Herbals Calendula Salve ($15CAD), but when I saw this very similar version at our local market I picked it up, as I always like to support local!
2. La Bella Figura Bio Active Healing Mask ($65CAD). When LBF was introduced on the Clementine Fields website, they had a promotion for 15% off it’s pre-sale. I ordered this mask as I was looking for something hydrating that could replace the uber-scented derma-e mask that I’d been using for a while (uncomfortably). I didn’t know what to expect, and was completely bowled over once I tried it – its truly amazing! It hydrates, it heals, it calms, it brightens…I honestly feel like it’s almost a one-stop shop as a mask, because my skin just looks SO DAMN GOOD after using it. I attribute it’s awesomeness to it’s inclusion of raw manuka honey (it’s the first ingredient) which is noted for it’s therapeutic, antibacterial and nourishing qualities. Other ingredients include kaolin clay, rosehip seed oil and calendula extract – be still my heart! Oh, and it’s also BRIGHT PURPLE (due to the aronia berry). I want to get my hands on the Purifying ($65CAD) version next.
3. Lina Hanson Global Body Serum ($64CAD). I really wish this didn’t cost so damn much because I just want to drown in this fantastically scented body oil for the rest of my life. As it stands, I’m still trying to ration it, but I still fear it won’t last long as I keep using it every few days because it’s so addictive!
Serge Lutens Un Bois Vanille ($130US). Yum. And YUM. You all know my penchant for vanilla-based scents, so my love for this probably comes as no surprise. With notes like sandalwood, coconut milk, musk, vanilla and tonk a bean, it’s a gourmand fragrance-lovers paradise. I was surprised however that it also contains notes like black liquorice (which I hate) and bitter almond – but I suspect they help round out the scent and keep it from being too OTT vanilla, which can get headache-inducing fast. I have worn this and only this since purchasing it in NYC; the only gripe I have with the fragrance is that I don’t find it lasts on my skin – but I guess that just gives me an excuse to spritz, spritz, spritz!
Make Up For Ever Medium Highlighting Brush in #152 ($43CAD). I didn’t quite understand just how much I would love this brush until I really put it into practice and had a while to play with it. This brush is absolutely integral in my makeup application – aside from applying cream or powder highlighters like a dream, it also blends all formulas of blush or bronzer perfectly. I don’t quite know how it does it, but somehow the fibers of the brush, its density, and it’s softness all contribute to a beautifully seamless complexion. LOVE.
Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal (full-size, $50CAD). Though I only have a deluxe sample size of this product, you only need the slightest amount to get amazing, glowing skin, so it’s lasted me ages! I usually pull this out when I am either going for a really ‘natural’ look that focuses on the skin, or if I’m looking to amp up the glow factor for an event. Though the full-size would probably last me a lifetime – something that doesn’t appeal to a fickle beauty fiend like myself – I still think I’ll repurchase this when I DO run out, because it’s truly the most beautiful yet natural-looking illuminator I’ve ever used.
Buxom Full-Bodied Lipsticks (full-size, $26CAD). My love for this lipstick formula is still going strong. I use the little sample bullets I’ve got more than any other lipstick I own, and I’m looking forward to the day when they run out – so I can justifiably buy some full sizes! Just so, so creamy and comfortable to wear, with awesome full pigment. For the price especially, you really can’t beat ‘em!
Chanel Le Blush Creme de Chanel in Revelation ($43CAD). I have been on a cream blush kick for a while now, as I find it just looks so darn natural, which fits my makeup M.O. these days. The newish Blush Cremes dry to an almost powder-like finish, so they don’t have quite the same effect; nevertheless, this natural-looking apricot shade gets a lot of regular use because it goes with just about every makeup look I wear. The only downside is that its a touch too light when my skin is tanned – but at the moment it’s just right :)
MAC Eyeshadow in All That Glitters (pro-pan, $12CAD). Though I have lessened my use of this shadow recently due to switching up my makeup routine, this baby got some SERIOUS love for months after I bought it early last spring. It gives my eyes the most subtle yet beautiful sparkle I’ve ever seen, and accompanies a bright lip look beautifully. The hype is TRUE, you guys. BUY IT.
Burberry Sheer Eyeshadow in Trench ($30CAD). Even after owning this shadow for a year and a half, I’m still amazed at how perfectly it blends and melds on the brow bone to give the perfect level of highlight to the eye. As I have a lot of shimmering shadows, it keeps them grounded without making me look too ‘show dancer,’ but also isn’t so flat that it looks dull. On top of all that, it’s HELLA soft.
Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof in Noir Intense ($29CAD). I wasn’t big on black pencil eyeliner until I purchased this early in the year – I didn’t have one and thought I should at least have one in my arsenal. I don’t use it as a traditional liner, but rather as a tightliner on my upper lash line. It a nice, dark black that gives great definition when I’m doing a more natural look (see a theme here?) and doesn’t budge – in fact, it’s difficult to remove at the end of the day, so keep that in mind. But as I find a long-wearing liner hard to come by, it’s far from a deal-breaker!
MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack ($19CAD). Black pencil liner may never have been my thing, but I can’t say the same for black cream/gel/liquid formulas, which have always been a staple in my arsenal. When I ran out of my last black liquid liner, I decided it was about time I tried the cult fave Blacktrack. It’s nice and dark, and its creamy texture makes creating a winged look (a regular go-to for me) incredibly easy. I’m not convinced I would repurchase, only because there are several black cream/gel liners that I’d like to try, but it’s been a faithful staple for me since I purchased it.
XLash Eyelash Enhancer ($59). You’re all probably sick and tired of hearing me trumpet on and on about my love for this lash serum, but seriously, just get some and then get back to me – I promise you’ll be converted! I won’t repeat my gushings yet again, but I will say that I am actually planning to buy more of this when I run out (still haven’t!). SO. GOOD.
That just about rounds up my year in beauty in a nutshell! I’ve tried many things, some duds, some *pretty good*, but this collection here have been raised to the level of HG status for me. As I learn and grow I find my selections have become more and more curated to the point where I rarely have a miss (at least if they’re purchased by me) and I’ve grown quite fond of my collection, to which I’ve whittled and culled to include *almost* only products that are a pleasure to use. I still have a bit of work to do (which I plan on laying out for you in a future post), but overall I’m quite pleased and have passed the ‘GAH! My-stash-is-overwhelming-OMG-the-anxiety!‘ stage that I was in for a long time since starting the blog. Which I deem a HUGE success :)
So say farewell to 2013 and welcome in the New Year with a bang! I appreciate each and every reader of my little beauty haven, whether you’ve been with me or a while, or stumbled upon my ramblings by accident. You’re the only reason I keep on writing! I wish all of you a very excellent finale to the year soon past and hope that the very best is yet to come in 2014!!! Let’s make it all sorts of great, yea? :D
Image credit: ilovehdwallpapers.com
I’m just sitting here reading my online copy of this month’s Allure via Zinio (thanks Amy!!!!) and there’s a feature on a pair of GAP shorts and how 5 women wear them. Each have a small side bar which notes what lipstick, jewelry, shoes, etc. they would pick as their “favorite things“, which I always find interesting to read. Every time I come across these types of stories, I note how it pulls you in and makes you want to ‘have what they’re having’ so to speak – the psychology of it is kind of amazing, and I always think that if I were being interviewed, even plain old non-celebrity me and my choices would sound kind of intriguing. Takes me back to my Honours Psych thesis days ;)
So, I decided to interview myself, share my favorite things, and see if everyone runs off to buy them.
In seriousness though, we fickle beauty-fiends find ‘favorites’ every month, but it’s the shades and items we wear over and over, standing the test of time, that are a better indicator of a great product, and also hint at our beauty and style personalities!
Favorite Lip Color:
This may not be a fully-formed favorite just yet, but since it’s purchase last month its been in heavy rotation over all other lippies, and I don’t see that changing any time soon. You probably guessed it – it’s BITE Beauty’s High Pigment Pencil in Quince. DAMN, this pencil is fine! Fuchsia is definitely my new jam. Long-wearing, non-drying, bold color that works for all seasons. SOLD.
It may not come as a surprise that my favorite mascara brand is Clinique’s – yes, I work for the brand, but I love the mascaras because of all the different options we have (natural, fluttery, mega-volume, etc.) as well as the fact that they don’t dry up in a month, and for the most part are terribly easy to remove but don’t smudge throughout the day. I’ve always been a huge fan of the High Impact mascara, but more recently I’ve become majorly enamoured with our new High Impact Waterproof mascara, which gives some major oomph to the lashes without being crispy or unnatural-looking like some other waterproof versions I’ve tried. You can be sure I’ll be using this at the wedding next weekend!! Also notable is the Lash Power mascara, which is like a waterproof in that it won’t smudge or budge through heat, sweat, swimming, etc., but removes with warm water. It doesn’t give the same POW! as the waterproof, but it gets to each individual lash due to the teeny tiny brush, and is great for separation.
Favorite Nail Polish:
Ugh, how do I pick just one!? C’est impossible. But I *think* I can pick two. And they would be butter London Snog and Chanel Orange Fizz. I know both are summery tones which could be swaying my opinion this time of year, but I don’t think so. I seriously could wear Snog every day – put me on a desert island with this shade and I’d be happy as a clam (though… the clams on the island probably wouldn’t be that happy as I’d be eating them for survival).
It’s safe to say that I’m still madly in love with Tarte’s Pure Maracuja Oil – nothing has made more of a difference in my skin than this product! Stupidly, I bought a bottle of Bosica’s Tsubaki Facial Oil during the Sephora sale last month to try something new – I hope it can live up to Tarte’s! My bottle is almost finished so I’ll be trying the Boscia soon, and I’ll be sure to fill you all in on it’s efficacy.
I tend to be a scent jumper (are you seeing a trend here? Hello, fickle!) so I’ve never repurchased a bottle, but there was one fragrance that really stood out to me in the past that I actually finished and of which I get tempted to re-buy – namely, Burberry The Beat. It’s categorized as a woody floral which doesn’t sound like my taste, but damn it if I didn’t love that scent – it was so fresh and alluring at the same time. I went through that bottle within a year, which is unheard of for me. It has middle notes of Iris, which seems to be a recurring theme in a lot of fragrances I’ve sampled and enjoyed (Prada Infusion d’Iris; Lancome La Vie Est Belle), as well as top notes of Mandarin and base notes of Cedarwood, both of which are also found in Prada’s scent. I’ve considered buying Infusion d’Iris many times but never could commit, surprise surprise.
Ok, shoes are kind of the bane of my existence, as I have a bunion on my right foot that makes buying them incredibly tricky, so I make sure to always buy quality. In the past few months I’ve had tremendous success in two pairs – black platform pumps from Rockport, and a pair of nude almond-toe pumps from Banana Republic. SO. EFFING. COMFORTABLE. YOU GUYS. It’s crazy. The BR ones are no longer available, but the Rockport ones are still around (though not in the lizard skin finish anymore) so I’d grab ‘em fast if you’re interested! Now all I need is a fun pair in a color and I’m set :)
So apparently this has been a list of my two favorite things in each category lol – and I’m going to get even crazier here and show you 5 of my fave jewelry pieces, because they are equally loved by me on the regular.
LOVE my Michael Kors rose-gold watch, obviously (which I bought due to this Lent challenge), and I picked up a pair of Stella & Dot rose gold earrings to complement the watch last year and love ‘em too.
I wear the gold large-link bracelet from Banana Republic quite a bit, and it’s actually shifted me into wearing gold a lot more now. This gold ring from Aldo gets a lot of love – its tough to wear rings a lot when you always wear crazy-colored polishes, but this manages to hold it’s own. Lastly, this awesome funky giraffe bracelet my Mom bought me from Aldo ages and ages and ages ago is one of the few real statement pieces in my collection, and though initially I thought it was bizarre, I quickly became to love it.
Just for the heck of it (because I’m clearly out of control now), here’s two more well-loved pieces: my Tiffany key I got a few Christmases ago – I totally cried when I opened it, best gift ever! – and an eclectic owl necklace that I sort of inherited from my great-grandmother. Can you imagine her wearing something like this? And it just goes to show you how everything comes around and is new again eventually :)
And there you have it – all my fave things, are you feeling like you want to go buy it all now since I’m clearly SOOOO fabulous!? *crickets* …Yea, I didn’t think so, lol. But, since I didn’t do a favorites post for the end of 2012, I figure this is still original content on the blog, and a good way to get to know a bit more about me – which is sort of the real point of blogs, right? Hope you enjoyed!
What are some of your favorite things?
I often find that my best posts are those that are made up on a whim. Sometimes I’ll be trying something out for my own personal pleasure, and it leads to something else entirely. Today I had one such moment; I was trying to figure out just how I could wear my NARS Laguna Multiple effectively, as its quite pretty but gets very little use. I usually smear it on right from the tube and then blend the heck out of it with my fingers, applying it as a highlight on top of my cheekbones and around my brow bones. Today I tried buffing it in with a stippling brush, which seemed to work exceptionally well. Then I wondered how it looked in sunlight, and stepped out on my balcony in the sunshine, only to be blasted with some serious sparkle! Eeks! I can tell you right now that it is NOT the kind of product you want to wear outside in the sun (so, best used on cloudy days or at night), or at least if you DO wear it, use a very light hand. Lesson learned (and thankfully before I made the faux pas in public)!
Of course, this got me thinking about other highlighters/glow-makers I own and how they fare in the bright sunshine. Of course, being a dutiful blogger, I took photos so we all can benefit from my experiment :) I chose four others that are all permanent products in their respective brands: Benefit Watt’s Up, Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal, the Balm Mary-Lou Manizer, and Burberry Fresh Glow. You’ve seen swatches of some of these before in my Chanel Poudre Signée post, but here they are again (give or take a couple):
First let me preface the following face swatches by saying that while I could plainly see the sparkle/shimmer in sunlight, it is incredibly hard to capture in photos!! SO frustrating. With that in mind, please take my word for it whether or not something is visible or not, as it is tricky to see in the snaps I took ~grumbles~ Also, please note that all of these shots were taken on completely makeup-free skin (apologies for dark circles!), so there is no other potential shimmer interference (I cleansed my face thoroughly between each shot).
To begin, we have the Laguna Multiple I mentioned originally. Very sparkly in sunlight, and I really would avoid wearing it outside – especially if you do not have my skintone (on me it’s more of a highlight), as it would then be deep bronze + super shimmer, and just wouldn’t be your best moment. You’ll notice as you look through the other face pics that this one has the most noticeable shimmer, even in photographs. BELIEVE IT. However, it IS very pretty and I plan on using it on evenings out over this spring/summer.
Next, we have Benefit’s Watt’s Up luminizer – I only have a sample size of this but honestly that is enough, as a little goes a long way. I want to say it’s my least favorite of the five, but today changed my mind a bit, as the initial BAM! sparkle of it seemed to settle after a couple minutes, and then it really just gave me this lovely radiance. It’s still fairly shimmery, but not as much as the Laguna, and you could probably get away with it in the day if you went very minimal on shimmer elsewhere. Also, I’d probably layer my blush OVER this rather than under (which you’d likely do anyway if you chose powder, as this is a cream, and that’d just get weird), which would tone it down a little bit too. It took me AGES to get photos of this and I’m still not satisfied, so trust me when I say there IS visible shimmer (look for little particle-like things on my face – those are them :P).
Moving right along, next is the insanely popular Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector, in the shade Opal. I snagged this deluxe sample in a swap about a month ago and I LOVE IT SO MUCH YOU GUYS. I’m not going to go on a big ‘You have to buy this!’ rant, because everyone else has done such a good job – so just go buy it already! This product comes very close to the ‘might be too shimmery for day’ line but manages to toe it exceptionally well, so you can totally rock it out all summer long. I adore the glow this gives and because the shimmer particles are so small, they don’t look tacky at all, just nicely done. I will continue to wear this now that the sun is out, day or night.
Continuing on, we come to the Balm’s Mary-Lou Manizer. Next to Laguna this one is the most shimmery, and is also the only powder in the bunch. This was one of my first highlighters (and again, its a small sample size compared to the real deal) and I tended to wear it more in the corners of my eyes than anywhere else. Now, I wear it both ways (on my cheekbones too) but generally keep it to nighttime, as the shimmer combined with the lighter tone and powder formula can make it more obvious than I’d like. Still, the powder is butter-smooth and is nice to have on hand now and again!
Finally, we have the most natural of the bunch, and my personal preference for a foolproof glow – Burberry’s Fresh Glow Luminizing Base. If you recall, I bought this last year as a birthday treat for myself (which I think I might do every year – buy Burberry makeup, I mean!) and was unsure if it was genius or useless. Well, consider me converted because this give the most subtle yet glowing look of the bunch. It can be worn a multitude of ways: on bare skin, under foundation, over foundation, mixed in with foundation, etc. – but I prefer to use either on a bare face to just give me a pick me up if I’m going super low-key, or on top of foundation on the high points of the face. Even though there is shimmer, somehow there is no shimmer - like Houdini or something. I haven’t quite figured it out, but I will say that looking at it worn in full sunshine today for the first time, I was totally amazed – I looked utterly radiant but like I had absolutely nothing on. Kind of like how you look when you put on a face oil, and you look glowing, but without the adding ‘shine’ factor. Good times. Dammit Burberry, why is everything you do SO DAMN
Thus concludes my research – I hope you found it helpful! I know it’s tough to see the nuances between shots but I think the gist is there in terms of comparing the five. As always, this kind of post is helpful for me too, so yay for killing two birds with one stone!
Do you wear a highlighter? What formula/finish do you prefer? Which of these ones would you choose?
I was going to leave my eyeshadow collection ’till last to swatch in my ‘find the gaps’ series of posts, but the superstorm (which…is kind of lackluster – yea, there’s lots of snow, but I want some action, darn it!) seemed like the perfect time to just get ‘er done – so I did! Oh man…for those of you who have larger collections than mine, I feel sorry for you if you attempt to do this – it is a BIG EFFING ORDEAL. I started last night and got just over halfway through before both (!) arms had had enough. I continued today and after needing to re-swatch several shade categories to get them *just right*, my left arm is just burning (as you’ll notice in the photos – red spots galore!). So: enough. I’m ready to rock ‘n roll. Now – let’s get into ‘er!
Note: All shades are permanent within their respective brands except where otherwise noted.WHITE EYESHADOWAvon True Color Quad in Smokey Eyes (satin white) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Uzi (shimmer w/glitter) (LE) ‘HIGHLIGHT’ EYESHADOWMake Up For Ever Star Powder in #920 (iridescent) KATE Real Create Eyes BR-2 Palette (white gold pearl) MAC Eyeshadow in Vex (frost) NUDE EYESHADOWMAC Eyeshadow in Next to Nothing (Cult of Cherry Tempting Quad – frost) (LE) Laura Mercier Eye Color Duet in Suspense (matte cool beige) (LE) Burberry Sheer Eyeshadow in Trench (satin) BEIGE, CHAMPAGNE & PEACH EYESHADOWUrban Decay Eyeshadow in Midnight Cowboy Rides Again (shimmer w/glitter) Make Up For Ever Aqua Cream in #13 Warm Beige (frost) Chanel Illusion d’Ombre in Emerveille (shimmer) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Snatch (shimmer w/glitter) Kate Real Create Eyeshadow BR-2 Palette (soft peachy shimmer) MAC Eyeshadow in Arena (satin) GOLD EYESHADOWMAC Pigment in Melon (frost) Laura Mercier Illuminating Eye Color in Gilded Moonlight (pearl) (LE) Clinique Touch Tint for Eyes in Gold Glimmer (shimmer) (discontinued) COPPER & ORANGE EYESHADOWMAC Eyeshadow in Amber Lights (frost) Ardene Eyeshadow in 8B (pearl) BRONZE EYESHADOWMAC Pigment in Cocomotion (frost) (LE) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Smog (shimmer) MAC Eyeshadow in Tempting (lustre) Clinique Color Surge Super Shimmer Eyeshadow in Rum Spice (shimmer) BROWN EYESHADOWMAC Eyeshadow in Dark Edge (Cult of Cherry Tempting Quad – satin) (LE) KATE Real Create Eyes BR-2 Palette (deep brown shimmer) Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in #17 Espresso (matte) Laura Mercier Eye Color Duet in Suspense (matte burgundy brown) (LE) TAUPE-BROWN EYESHADOWS Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Suspect (shimmer) NARS Duo Eyeshadow in Rajasthan (beige-gold taupe) (shimmer) (LE) KATE Real Create Eyes BR-2 Palette (taupe shimmer) TAUPE-PURPLE EYESHADOWS NARS Duo Eyeshadow in Grand Palais (silver-taupe shimmer) Hourglass Visionaire Eye Shadow Duo in Exhibition (mauve shimmer) MAC Eyeshadow in Shale (satin) bareMinerals High Shine Eye Color in Meteorite (frost) Le Metier de Beaute True Color Eye Shadow in Corinthian (shimmer) RED & PINK EYESHADOWL’Oreal Infallible Eyeshadow in Golden Mahogany (frost) Chanel Illusion d’Ombre in Abstraction (shimmer) Avon True Color Quad in Smokey Eyes (matte light pink) MAUVE & ROSE EYESHADOW Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Bordello (shimmer w/glitter) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Last Call (metallic) NARS Duo Eyeshadow in Grand Palais (matte dusty rose) PLUM EYESHADOW NARS Duo Eyeshadow in Habanera (sparkling plum) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Rockstar (shimmer) Hourglass Visionaire Eye Shadow Duo in Exhibition (eggplant shimmer) PURPLE EYESHADOW Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Psychedelic Sister (shimmer) MAC Paint in Infamous (metallic) (discontinued) BLUE EYESHADOW MAC Paint in Blue Boy (metallic) (discontinued) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Radium (shimmer) MAC Eyeshadow in Blue Edge (matte w/shimmer) (discontinued) AQUA & TEAL EYESHADOWS NARS Duo Eyeshadow in Rajasthan (blackened teal shimmer) (LE) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Loaded (metallic) theBalm Shady Lady Eyeshadow in Jealous Jordana (shimmer) Make Up For Ever Aqua Shadow in 8E (matte) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Haight (shimmer) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Money (shimmer w/micro-glitter) (LE) NARS Duo Eyeshadow in Habanera (mint frost) GREEN EYESHADOW Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Kush (shimmer w/micro-glitter) Le Metier de Beaute True Color Eye Shadow in Jade (shimmer) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Mildew (shimmer) MAC Eyeshadow in Sharp (Cult of Cherry Tempting Quad – satin) (LE) Lise Watier Couleur Folle Eyeshadow in Folie Pomme (iridescent shimmer) Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in #57 Chartreuse (satin) YELLOW EYESHADOW Make Up For Ever Aqua Cream in #24 Yellow (matte) MAC Eyeshadow in Bright Future ( KHAKI EYESHADOW Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense Waterproof Eyeshadow in #24 Smokey Copper (shimmer) Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow in #6 Khaki Pulse (shimmer) Clinique Color Surge Soft Shimmer Eyeshadow in Autumn Moss (satin) TAUPE-SILVER EYESHADOWS Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Maui Wowie (metallic w/glitter) Bobbi Brown Chrome Eye Shadow in Pewter (frost) (LE) theBalm Shady Lady Eyeshadow in Insane Jane (shimmer) Make Up For Ever Aqua Cream in #2 Steel (shimmer) GREY EYESHADOW Avon True Color Quad in Smokey Eyes (medium grey & dove grey) (shimmer) BLACK EYESHADOWS MAC Pigment in Dark Soul (frost w/glitter) Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Perversion (matte)
Did you make it??
…So. To be honest, when I started swatching all my makeup, I was originally just trying to find a way to justify new purchases – if it could be considered a shade I didn’t already own, then I would feel free to go for it. However, now I’ve discovered that being so fully aware of what I own, has made me really excited to play with my current collection, instead of seeking out new products. I especially noticed this with this eyeshadow post – there are so truly fabulous shades in there! While there are still of course colors I’d like to pick up to fill the gaps (namely – a lilac and a skintone [MY skintone, to clarify] shade, among a couple others), overall I’m WELL aware I have a ton of shades to rock out and don’t really *need* anything else at the moment. I did notice I have a lot less color than I imagined, but that’s actually OK because I don’t tend to wear it a ton and try to avoid buying a lot of it only for it to go unused. I think my stash is fairly representative of the kind of makeup I wear day to day! So SCORE for being logical in my purchases :)
I am kinda worn out from the work necessary to do this post, so I’m done now LOL. But – I have questions for you!
Do you see any gaps that I could fill? What shades make up the bulk of your eyeshadow collection?? Also – anyone bother to count how many shades I have? I’m too tired now to bother LOL
I spent two hours – TWO HOURS! – last night, researching what products and shades I should to order from Becca Cosmetics (a brand I’ve yet to try and desperately want to). My (totally logical – I swear!) reason for doing this? To avoid purchasing any shades that were similar to ones I already own. I DID come up with a (very) pared down list, you’ll be happy to hear; if you’re interested (and FYI – the blog Shades of BECCA is a good resource for some swatches):
Papaya Beach Tint $30CAD (hot red)
Fallen Angel Ultimate Color Gloss $29CAD (nude spice)
There were a handful of other products I liked the look of, but in checking out swatches, they seemed to be too close to items I already own (though, c’mon, the brand is gorgeous and I could have easily gone for one of everything!). Which brings me to the point.
You’re all familiar with my organizational obsession right? (and…if you’re new and not aware: Hello! My name is Latoya and YES, I have a problem which manifests itself into a bit of compulsive organization. Could be worse!) Anyway, another problem I have is lack of funds; when you own a home on your own and don’t make the big bucks, things can get tricky. However, I have ANOTHER problem (jeez, someone institutionalize me, will ya?), which is that I love shopping – for cosmetics in particular. Smash the three of these together and what do you get? Well…you get THIS:
What ‘THIS’ is, is me taking a good look at an area of my makeup collection – specifically blush/bronzers in this instance – and seeing where I have gaps. By gaps, I mean: what shades do I lack that I can justify buying, in order to round out my stash and also quell the burning desire to shop my face off. Ya dig? This fantabulous idea kills
three birds three mosquitoes (no one cares about those) with one big-ass swat. I get to organize something*, figure out what shades or products I’m missing, and rationally and systematically purchase new items that are on my wishlist and fit the ‘missing’ bill. BOOM!
*Seriously guys, I joke but….I really like organizing things. So much so, that near the end of the month I’m signing up for a Professional Organizers intro course to see if I’d like to become a professional organizer for realz. It’s THAT serious :S
So, as you can see, I’m starting with blush – because clearly blush is THE BEST EVER and deserves the number one spot for allowing EVEN MORE BLUSH. Because clearly 20 (+ 7 bronzer-type things and 2 mini-blush) are NOT ENOUGH.
(I swear I’m not on the sauce tonight guys – I just feel a little peppy ’cause I’m back into running and signed up for the Ottawa 1/2 Marathon in May…wooo! :D)
Even with 20+ blush, I can plainly see what shades I’m lacking: A bright red! (NARS Turkish Red is more of a burgundy) A true orange! (NARS Taj Mahal is kind of a burnt orange and quite shimmery) A neutral pink! (…I literally do not own one beige-y pink blush, for shame) A nice deep berry would be lovely! And also – varying formulations! I have NO cheek tints, and only four cream blush. You see, there actually ARE shades/formulas I do not have despite having far more blush than is probably necessary. And then, there are shades I need NO more of, like medium pinks…I have enough of those, yep. I don’t think I need any more bronzers, especially since I rarely wear them and I’m already kinda *ahem* bronze. I only really have a couple coral shades, which tends to be the one a lot of people go gaga for (myself included), but I’ll hold off till the warmer months on thinking about those right now. Same goes for apricot-hued shades.
Left to right (flash): NARS Desire, Illamasqua Unrequited (discontinued shade*), theBalm Down Boy, Chanel Blush Horizon de Chanel, Benefit Bella Bamba, Illamasqua Hussy, Bobbi Brown Calypso Coral, NARS Torrid, theBalm Hot Mama
Left to right (flash): NARS Laguna Illuminator, Too Faced Sun Bunny Bronzing Powder, NARS Laguna Multiple, MAC Refined Golden Bronzing Powder, Milani Sunset Duos in Sunset Beach, Clinique Bronze Uplighting, Estee Lauder Illuminating Gelee in Shimmering Sands
What I’m wondering is, what gaps do YOU see? Since I only have my stash to compare it to, I can’t get a good idea of what I’m missing. What shades can you suggest that I should focus on buying?
I’m planning on doing this little experiment with all my makeup over the next little while, so be prepared: more lame examples of my organizational obsession coming your way! But do come back anyway, because I need your help :)
Is your makeup collection where you want it to be, or do you have a few gaps you’d like to fill?
I have been thinking about fall A LOT lately, probably more than I should since it’s still summer! I held out for a long time, even despite all the visuals and temptations of the new collections that came out far earlier than they should have – but I’m a change-seeker, and I’m just about ready to switch it up!
So far, I haven’t picked up too many items from the fall launches specifically – but I’ve been slowly building my arsenal of fall shades, new or old, and I think I’m nearly ready :) Some things I already owned, and some are new purchases, and between the two I think I’m going to have one heck of a beautiful fall!
While I don’t follow ‘trends’ per se, I am very influenced by the weather with regard to my makeup, and with crisp, blustery days and vivid autumn leaves in my future, the imagery is bound to translate. Warm metallics, smokey greys, jewel tones, and dark, vampy lips have been dancing in my head in a big way. The pictures below perfectly exemplify what I mean – here I’ve paired them with some corresponding shade selections from my stash (all swatch photos taken outside):
(below, left to right)
- Dior Rouge Dior in Daisy Plum (golden berry plum)
- Ellis Faas Creamy Lips in L102 (deep plum wine)
- MAC Mattene in Bing (blackened eggplant) (LE from Fall 2008 Cult of Cherry collection)
Wearing a deep, bold lip has never been so enticing to me. I plan on rocking out the above shades all season long!
(below, left to right)
- MUFE Eyeshadow in Espresso 17 (chocolate brown)
- LM Eye Color Duet in Suspense (plum-brown side of duo) (new and LE for Fall 2012 Cinema Noir collection)
- MAC Eyeshadow in Shale (taupe-mauve)
- theBalm Eyeshadow in Insane Jane (gunmetal)
I’m also really eager to work a smokey eye on the regular; in the past I’ve always only worn this look in a big way for a night out, but this fall I’m hoping to wear the soft, more subtle version (as best evidenced by the Burberry fall collection) in shades of grey, taupe, and brown. I realized I’m sorely lacking a matte grey shadow – any suggestions??
(below, left to right)
- MAC Blush in Raizin (reddish-brown)
- Burberry Light Glow Blush in Russet (glowing rust)
- NARS Velvet Lip Gloss Pencil in More (terracotta) (new for Fall 2012 collection)
- Clinique Color Surge Eyeshadow in Rum Spice (deep bronze)
- Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Intense Eyeshadow in #6 (warm khaki)
- Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Intense Waterproof Eyeshadow in#24 (smoky khaki-gold) (new and LE from Fall 2012 collection)
Of course, it wouldn’t be fall with out the earthy shades of the season, such as khaki, terracotta, and bronze – which are some of my favorite types of colors and look best on my skintone (bring it!).
(below, left to right)
- Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in Velvet Plum (cool plum) (discontinued shade)
- Rouge Bunny Rouge Original Skin Blush in Florita (glowing berry)
- CoverFX BronzedFX in Garnet (reddened bronze)
- NARS Cream Blush in Turkish Red (cool deep red) (discontinued shade)
Lastly, a good flushed cheek can’t be beat in the cooler months! I could use a few more of these mysterious shades in my repetoire, I just love them for their wearability on just about every skin tone.
Gah! Ok, now I’m REALLY ready for fall! Its been a fantastic summer, don’t get me wrong…but it’s time for a change :) Even though I had a major love affair with some fabulous brights all season, I’m getting a bit tired of them – and who doesn’t love the moody shades of autumn!? Note that the above shades I’ve listed that are new for fall 2012 will all be reviewed individually (any requests for which should be first??).
What shades are you looking forward to wearing this fall? Have you been lured into purchasing anything from the new collections?
Er, so it’s been like what – 18 days since my birthday, plus a few more than that since I received my Burberry items, and I have yet to post about ‘em…WTF? Sorry about that! It’s just that these products are kinda special, you know, and I really wanted to make sure I did a thorough review, with the best photos I could manage and without being too biased, since the general consensus online about Burberry cosmetics is: AWESOME. After giving each piece its fair share of face time (literally), I think I’m finally ready to show you and discuss my recent acquisitions.
First of all, my purchases came housed in a cute little Burberry box, quite sturdy, from Holt Renfew, with a couple sweet extra samples and treats for me to try from the brand – a gorgeous mirrored compact housed in their iconic substantial packaging, two deluxe size samples of their Lip Cover, a sample packet of four of their Lip Mist shades, and a handful of samples of their foundation and concealer, which the SA guessed as using my NARS foundation shade as a reference (as my order was over the phone). The actual products I purchased were: Sheer Eye Shadow in Trench, a pale satin cream shade; Light Glow Blush in Russet, a muted rust shade with a hint of shimmer; and Fresh Glow Luminous Foundation Base, a liquid face illuminator.
When I was trying to figure out which items I was going to purchase, I wanted to be sure that they would be of good value and use in my collection, as of course the products are terribly cheap. I picked Trench eyeshadow ($33CAD) because, interestingly enough, I don’t have one shade like it in my stash. I have a handful of similar, shimmery shades, but I was finding that I had nothing to wear as a brow bone highlight that didn’t look garish or ‘too much’ for every day. I also find that as I tend to wear shimmery eyeshadows on the whole, I prefer a more matte shade to wear under the brow.
Trench is an excellent compliment to almost all of my looks – as it’s not a flat matte (you can see the very slight shimmer in the photos below), it looks very subtle. I’ve been reaching for it almost daily since I got it. As the powder is very smooth and soft, it kicks up a bit of excess but not so much that it’s a problem, and it doesn’t get terribly messy in the pan (pet peeve!).
The color of Trench works really well as a highlight as it’s neither too yellow nor too pink, but very neutral in tone. I think this would work for almost all skintones except very dark for that purpose. I worried a bit that Trench might be too light for me, but as long as I use light hand it works very well. In the 8 months of the year when I’m not tanned, it will be perfect. Note that the shadows are fragrance free.
The Light Glow Blush in Russet ($54CAD) looked lovely in swatches, but wasn’t necessarily my first choice out of the possible shades. However, many of the Burberry blushes looked as if they may be too genteel for my darker complexion, which Russet appeared to be substantial enough, which is why I chose it. Note: there IS fragrance in the blushes – a nice, subtle scent I can’t place – but once on the skin it dissipates, and so far it hasn’t caused any issues with my sensitive skin at all.
Russet is a really hard color to capture, and describe, as it’s not quite brown, not quite peachy – its really more a mix of the two, closer to a dusty terracotta but not so orange. I think it’s soft enough to work for many skintones, but I definitely suggest trying it first if you can, especially if you have cooler tones. It does contain shimmer, but on the skin even in sunlight I find it very subtle and enhancing, rather than gaudy, giving the skin a glow rather than an Edward Cullen-like shimmer (so Breaking Dawn Part II isn’t till November – what of it?). Again, the formula of the powder is so soft it kicks up a bit, but no big issues with that. Oh, and if you tap your brush into the pan rather than sweep, you preserve the pretty pattern MUCH better :D
One thing I really like about this blush is that its a great transitional shade that works for me in several seasons. Right now, it looks very subtle and adds just a lovely warmth to my skin without too much color – it’s great for those days when I’m wearing a strong lip, or if I’m going ‘au naturel’. However, in the Fall months when I lose some of my tan, this will be an excellent shade to wear with deeper Autumnal tones, as it leans somewhat brown and makes me think of the changing leaves. It’s also not SO warm that I can’t wear this during cooler months as well – I can’t wait!
One thing to note about both the shadow and blush are the wear times – for the shadow, I haven’t been paying close attention because I’m only wearing it on the brow, but so far it seems to last most of the day. As for the blush, I have to sadly report that the wear time is not great – by midday it’s faded quite a bit (over powdered skin) – but somehow it still leaves my skin with a warmth to it. I suspect the reason it seems to fade away is that it’s already quite subtle on me; when my tan fades I will investigate further and see if it seems to be apparent for a longer time period.
Since Holts was having a GWP of sorts with Burberry when I ordered, I had to get another item to get in on the deal, so I picked the Fresh Glow Luminous Foundation Base ($66CAD) since I had read rave reviews about it previously on Cafe Makeup. The packaging is statuesque – I love having this on display as it looks so pretty :)
The product comes out via a pump dispenser that gives just the right amount, no overkill here at all. Its a pale, shimmering creamy shade that is fairly neutral, meaning it doesn’t lean too pink or too golden, making it exceptionally wearable for almost everyone. It’s also fairly sheer in application, so even very dark skin can wear it without it looking ashy.
I’ve been experimenting with this several different ways, applying it under my foundation, over it, mixing it WITH my foundation, and wearing it on bare skin. To be honest, I haven’t seen much of a difference either way – it’s very subtle. However, when I swatched it for this post, I realized that this product must be GENIUS, because its CLEARLY noticeable in these shots and has some decent shimmer going on. But worn on my face, not ONCE have I looked glittery or obviously wearing some sort of highlighting product, so…? I guess it’s just that good? I just don’t notice much of a glow happening either, but then again, I’m already a touch oily so I’m not exactly begging for it. One thing I will say is that using this on top of foundation is not really the way to go – I found it hard to blend and THEN I was able to see an outline of shimmer versus my natural skin. It needs to be rubbed in without fear of taking the makeup itself off, so either go for it beforehand or add it to your foundation.
Lastly, we have the Lip Cover shades, which I will just touch on as I’ve only worn one of them so far, and this post is already WAY too long! Rosewood is a medium rose-mauve shade, which typically doesn’t look great on my skintone, and is why I haven’t tried it yet. Cameo Pink is a soft coral-pink shade that looks really natural on me – it’s nearly a MLBB shade but is a hair too light this time of year to be so. It feels fantastic on the lips; really creamy and smooth, hydrating and lightweight, and I find after its been on for a few minutes it really melds with the skin to look super natural. There is no scent that I can detect. I’m already planning to pick up some full-size shades when I can – it won’t be a cheap buy at $36CAD, but they feel so luxurious and wonderful that I can’t resist!
Like many others, the packaging is what really grabs me about the Burberry products. I’m not a huge fan of the Burberry pattern in clothing (though I don’t dislike it at all), but the gunmetal metallic cases with the design are so striking and just feel SO elegant (and of course the repeating design on the powders themselves – to die!). The magnetic snap closures are divine and so satisfying to close shut – so lame but you know you love it!
And of course…they look awfully pretty on :)
Wearing Russet Light Glow Blush, Cameo Pink Lip Cover, and Trench Sheer Eye Shadow (sunlight)I had to add this photo because I’m making the most hilarious face…but it’s a good example of how the Russet blush warms up my face – and also I thought it was good for a laugh :P
Finally. This post has been weighing on my mind for weeks – I hope did these products justice! My overall thoughts are that I’ll probably pick up a few more shadow shades over time; I may check out more of the blushes, but only if I see them in person; the luminizer is either the most genius product ever made, or a total waste of my money; and the lipsticks are absolutely phenomenal and a few full-size ones will be joining my lippie stash in the very near future. If nothing else, I’m getting some serious pleasure just looking at these items in my stash – they’re just beyond lovely!
What do you make of the Burberry products? Worth the hype (packaging)? Are there any items that you’re lemming?
Today is my day off, and I’m very fortunate as the weather is LOVELY – the week/weekend was rainy for the most part, so I’m quite pleased that I get to spend my day frolicking in the sunshine.
Sometimes on these days, I make a point to get over to the mall (aka Sephora) as it’s often the only opportunity I have. I originally planned to head over and check out the new wares at the store as well as take a gander at MAC’s Casual Color collection. I had my eye on ‘Keep It Casual’ which is a deep berry tone and not something I gravitate toward often (hence, I may have a place (justification) for it in my ever-growing stash!). However, the sun is shining and calling me to come out and play, rather than spend any time indoors – and my budget is pleading with me to hold off until we move in case I need that cash for other, more *ahem* important things (like places to sit). So, I stomped into the bathroom and started weeding through my blushes to see if I had anything like ‘Keep It Casual.’ Of course, I have nothing to compare it to, but I remembered my much looked-over Turkish Red Cream Blush from NARS just kickin’ around and going generally unloved. After swatching it, it seemed close enough in tone that I figured I could leave ‘Keep It Casual’ where it belongs – back in the store for some other beauty junkie – and decided it was time to get creative.
(Whoa, sorry for that long opening paragraph!)
Anyway, I slapped on a few things and actually came away with a look I ADORE – it’s a touch Fall-ish, but actually looks warm and inviting in the sunshine, so I thought I’d share it with you. I actually managed to use two products that don’t get a lot of use in my stash (which I’m still trying to make a point of doing) – the other is MAC’s Mattene lipstick in Bing, a deep, dark, blackened cherry shade from the Cult of Cherry collection from 2008, when goth lips first came into fashion. I love the dark lip look but it doesn’t quite suit my coloring for the most part; for the first time, I think I found a way to wear it that’s quite pretty, so I’m pretty stoked!
Enough rambling (must get back outside!) – here we go:
Since the blush was the main point of the exercise, I stippled Turkish Red on my cheeks (focusing closer to cheekbones) and blended out. As it’s quite pigmented, I applied my base second, MUFE’s Face & Body foundation in #18 (review to come), to my entire face and just lightly over the blush to diffuse it out. I added a touch of NARS’ South Beach Multiple to the tops of my cheekbones for some extra gleam.
I patted on MAC’s Amber Lights eyeshadow, a rich, shimmery orangey-gold, to lids and just above the crease. I blended out the edges and highlighted the brow with Burberry’s Trench shadow, which is a pale bone shade with a slight satin finish rather than chalky matte (looks so natural! Review to come). I defined my eye with UD’s Perversion liquid liner, and then topped it off with mascara.
I don’t wear darker shades of lips very often at all, and as you know and just venturing out into wearing lipstick and more opaque colors as a whole, so I was pleasantly surprized that I actually REALLY liked this look. I started with a base of Turkish Red on my lips, which actually looked quite nice on it’s own. Then I applied Bing on top, and lightened up it’s super-dark tones with a touch of Sephora’s She Sparkles gloss, a fine glittery gold.
And voila! Easiest look ever, and I kinda want to wear it all the time now. It definitely makes me want to give berry lips a chance now, though since Bing is probably the only berry shade I own, that might mean buying other lippies – uh oh. I’ll hold off till the cooler weather returns before going down THAT road.
What do you think of this look? Can I get away with it in the Summer, or should I hold off till Fall? What tactics do you use to avoid a lemming?
I confess that I don’t really understand the ‘terrible’ implications some people seem to feel turning 30 has (or 40, or 50, or any milestone age, for that matter!). I feel exactly the same today at 30 as I did yesterday at 29, and the number itself harbours absolutely no negative feelings in me whatsoever. I actually much prefer the even number to the odd, ugly number of 29 (though 28 – my ‘golden’ year – was my favorite :P). Anyway, mostly I just think it’s pretty cool to be entering a whole new decade of my life, and I’m really looking forward to what it is going to bring. I can’t imagine anything but new and exciting times to come!
In order to fully celebrate making it successfully into my thirties, I’ve decided to do compile a list of 30 things I’d like to do this year, starting today till my birthday next year. I’m sure many of you aren’t surprized, since I do so love a good challenge and an opportunity to make yet another list! :P
The list is comprised to items of varying nature – some are quite grand events and goals I hope to endeavor upon (run a full marathon; buy a piece of designer jewelry or a pair of designer shoes; participate in a protest; travel to New Zealand – which has been on my ‘bucket list’ for ages and is the only thing that’s officially set in motion!), while others are much more moderate in nature but things I’ve always wanted to do nonetheless (learn how to play poker; read 12 classic novels; have a technology-free weekend; go to a new restaurant every month). I divided them into categories – 10 for life-based goals (like learning how to shoot a gun *just because, not for any scary reason!*), 5 for Halifax-themed (go on the local Ghost Walk tour), 5 for travel (take a spur of the moment flight somewhere!), 5 for ‘fabulous’ things (like attending a real fashion show), and of course – 5 for beauty-related items!! Which I am now going to detail below:
1) Learn 3 new hairstyles
My curly mop of hair is fun, to be sure, but there’s really not a whole lot I can do with it – or at least that I’ve taken the time to learn, anyway! So this year, I vow to stop doing the same old (which just means wearing it down as is) and trying out new ways to work with it to have some fun with it! I’ll say it right now: I am welcoming suggestions!!!!
2) Attend Cosmoprof or IMATS
I’m fairly certain attending one of these events would be like my own private Utopia, so attend I must :) It’ll depend on the timing and location to determine which I’ll go to (and I’m not even sure if a layperson can go to Cosmoprof?), but I probably should start saving my pennies now, eh?
3) Go makeup-less for a week
Gotta throw in a good challenge of course! Even though I tend to not want to stop wearing makeup for the mere fact that that means I’m not using it up faster, I think going makeup-less for a week will be a wonderful way to make sure I remember thatit’s just makeupand that as fun as it is, it’s not the be-all end-all. I don’t think this is going to be that hard as in, being uncomfortable without it per se, but obviously makeup plays a huge part in my life, and I think going without for a period of time will strengthen my character. And when I say without, I mean nothing. Nada. Not even concealer for my racoon eyes. Who am I kidding? It’s gonna be a scary week. But also majorly liberating!
4) Try 12 new-to-me beauty brands
I’ve already got my list drawn up for the brands I’d love to try! I’ve made some headway this past year with checking out Le Metier de Beaute, and Burberry (oh yes I did! Keep reading for the scoop :)), but there are still a handful which I’d love to try and am going to make a point to do so. I think this year will be a good one for restraint on the number of products I pick up, and more of a focus on what I’m getting instead. I’m pretty stoked for it!
5) One Month Beauty Challenge
I have to explain this one because it’s a little convoluted, as my schemes usually are :P What I want to do is this: Choose 10 makeup items only (this includes staples like foundation or mascara) and then allow myself to wear only those 10 items for the entire month. Of course I will have to be extremely selective and make sure I have the best products to allow me to create a variety of looks. I have a vague idea of what I’ll use; when the time comes I’ll make the final decision. I’m tempted to cheat and do this while I’m traveling for five weeks in New Zealand – because I’ll be bringing VERY minimal makeup along with me then – but I think I’ll do this as a separate challenge for my day-to-day life. I don’t know the month yet, but of course when I decide I’ll be posting all the details here!
So that’s what you can expect to see at Beauty Obsessed over the next year! I’m pretty excited for all of the goals I have to work toward, beauty or otherwise. I love having things to look forward to, and I like getting a fire under my butt to get things done. No time like the present!
Now, I’m not going to leave you with just a bunch of my ramblings today, of all days! I’ve got a little bit of photo porn to show you from my Burberry haul first – of course full reviews will be forthcoming over the next little while!
Oh yea, I forgot to mention – these photos were taken with my BRAND NEW CAMERA!!!!!! My delightful boyfriend gave it to me for my birthday gift (along with planning a surprize super-fun photo scavenger hunt/pig roast/party for my celebrations this past weekend!). Best gift ever! I can’t get over how much better my photos are and how much less work I have to put in to get a good result! Old camera is getting the boot lol. I hope you’ll enjoy the much better quality photos moving forward! :D
Now I’m off to relax and enjoy my day (going for a massage later – heaven!), I hope you all had a fantastic weekend!!!