Saturday, March 31, 2012

Review: Beauty Bar Sample Society First Box

Beauty Bar Sample Society Mailer Box
 Beauty Bar's Sample Society Box premiered in March. This was my first sample subscription box, and I was pretty darned excited to get it!

The packaging and graphics are very nice. Gold foil printing on the outer box, silver tissue paper inside, and the little booklet beautifully printed and designed, with lots of tips on how to use the products.
Reverse Side Mailer Box

Inner Box with gold foil accent - fancy!

Silver Tissue Paper inside - pricey!

Booklet with tips
 But, alas, the products themselves left me a bit underwhelmed, I'm afraid.
What's in the box

Close on box contents
Skyn Iceland Icelandic Eye Relief Pen

End of Eye Pen

Stuff that comes out of end of eye pen
 This eye pen feels like any old moisturizer, but it tingles a bit, and I think that probably plumps the skin under my eyes a bit, at least until it wears off. Since my old eyes can't see too well how it works under my eyes (I'm not joking--it's hard for me to see) I put some on the back of my hand. It did make the skin there look smoother, although the tingle effect actually feels a bit sore, after a bit.
Ren Glycolactice Masque Peeling, 'Cause I'm old
I won't lie, this stuff scares me, and so I haven't tried it yet. What if I end up looking like Samantha in Sex and the City? I promise, I'll try it and give you the review. I'm hoping I don't need to use my fancy Beblesh Beauty Balm for its original purpose afterward, which was to hide the redness from chemical peels and, gasp! plastic surgery.

Did I mention that, as a rule, I don't believe in plastic surgery? Hence that nice deep line between my eyebrows.  I call that my "WTF" line because that is the expression I make, over and over, that caused it and is deepening it. Maybe if life offered fewer of those WTF experiences, it wouldn't be there, or maybe I just have a bad attitude. Oh, well. Something to work on as I move through my 48th year of life....
Dermatolica Daily Microfoliant Deluxe Sample
This stuff is fine milled, and you have to mix it with water. The time I tried it, I felt like I was breathing in a small portion of the dust, which I don't really think is good for me. If I were Dermatoliga, I'd suspend that exfoliating stuff in some kind of liquidy medium.

It did make my skin feel very smooth and soft afterward. As a rule, because I still have acne, (I know! How sucky is that!) I don't do a lot of exfoliation. It tends to exacerbate the problem. I certainly won't be using this daily.  Maybe weekly at most.
Fekkai Advanced Glossing Cream
 This glossing cream works well, but not as well as my Kiehl's Silk Groom, which I use to condition my hair before I style it. I wouldn't buy this glossing cream. I will take it on vacation, though, because it's the perfect travel size. And that way, I'll get to test drive it for a longer period.
Oscar de la Renta Esprit d'Oscar Deluxe Mini Rollerball
Fragrance is such a personal thing. I love Issey Miyake's fragrances because they are so fresh. I also love Bvlgari's Green Tea perfume, again, it's fresh citrusy and expensive smelling. And the Bvlgari I first smelled on a cruise to Italy with my Mom, so how am I not going to love that?

My husband really liked the way this Esprit d'Oscar smelled on me, which counts for a lot. It is subtle and sophisticated. But I'm afraid my nose mostly gets the aroma of baby powder, and something bluish, which I think is the heliotrope. The spicy oriental wood notes I can detect are the saving grace for me. But I'd still repurchase one of my favorites rather than get this one in a larger size. I don't really get the citrusy topnotes as much. I think they are overpowered by the other stuff. I know I'm harping on the 'old' thing here, but this one smells a bit old lady to me. Sigh.

Better luck next time, Beauty Bar Sample Society.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

New Blogger App and Face of the Day

I'm using the new Blogger app to post from my iPad, aka "The Precious." Just trying to figure out how it works. Please post me some tips on this--I could use them!

At The Makeup Show LA, one of my favorite booths was OCC, aka Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics, and one of their holy grail products, creating buzz everywhere in the beauty blogosphere, is the Lip Tar. I bought myself Memento and Kava Kava, the latter of which is part of their spring Garden collection. At the show, I put on Kava Kava and got immediate compliments!

Here's a quick FOTD look of me wearing Kava Kava, and a neutral eye anchored by Maybelline Eye Studio's Color Tattoo cream eye shadow in Tough as Taupe.

Over that I layered brown and taupe shades from my new fave, the NYX Butt Naked palette. Don't spend the cash for either of the Urban Decay Naked palettes--get Butt Naked instead! It includes a whole blush palette as well as all the neutral eye shades you need. Just sayin.'

Monday, March 26, 2012

Face of the Day a la Madmen - The Luscious Red Lip

Red Lip, Neutral Eye, Liner with a Flick, MADMEN!
We had to catch up on Madmen before the Season 5 premiere, and halfway through the Sunday Netflix marathon, I knew I had to do the red lip thing Monday. Christina Hendricks as Joan can really rock a vivid lip. What's nice about the early to mid 60s is there are lots of options available, including hot pink and tangerine. But I have to say, doing the bright lip at work, or for any extended period of time anywhere, takes some effort. Touch-ups, and touch-ups and touch-ups.

Do my lips look smaller?
Bright lipstick is supposed to make your lips look smaller, and so thin-lipped ladies like myself are supposed to avoid it.  But I kind of like the way it looks.  There's nothing more feminine and ladylike than a red lip.

And Revlon still has some great red shades. I'm wearing Super Lustrous Créme Certainly Red #740. Here are some others they still sell, and the years they launched. Pretty cool stuff.

I already own Fire and Ice because of its famous ad campaigns over the years. Below is a sample. Certainly Red is wearable for me because it's a bluer red -- it doesn't make my slightly dingy teeth look worse. (Okay, maybe not so "slightly.") But I love Fire and Ice...its brilliant candy-apple splashiness.

I think I bought Cherries in the Snow once when I was in high school, but that was the early 80s, and Madonna hadn't yet brought back the red lip. I just liked it--that hint of fuchsia in the deep red tone. I want to rock it now, and Love that Pink, and Hot Coral. The touch ups are worth the effort.

Cherries in the Snow Ad
In a red lip I feel like my elegant and lovely Mom, my Granny in a big hat playing shuffleboard on the deck of an Alcoa freighter, my Aunt Diana chain-smoking and leaving that perfect ring of red on every filter in that stacked up ashtray. So gloriously female.

I had a friend in New York who was working for the Metropolitan Museum of Art when Diana Vreeland was directing the Diaghilev Costume Exhibit. Apparently she decided the catalog, the opening rooms, most of the exhibit should be done in rich, true red, because, as she said,

"Red is the only neutral color."

Here's what I used:

  • Embryolisse Lait-Créme Concentré 24 Hour Cream
  • Skin79 Super Beblesh Balm
  • Coty Loose Powder
La Femme Blushes
  • La Femme Blush in Coral 
NYX Butt Naked Palette Eyes
  • Urban Decay Primer Potion
  • NYX Butt Naked Palette--top left lightest all over lid; middle row second from right taupe; brown bottom row, second from right, along lash line
  • Anastasia brow wax, powder duo in blonde, and using Petite Arch brow stencil -- this is magic to shape your brows!

  • HIP black gel eyeliner tight-lined under upper lashes, along upper lashes, with a little flick at outer edges, and drawn along lower lashes about a third of the way
  • Anastasia double ended nude pencil along lower water line, to open the eye. Do these people make a product I don't like?  Not so far!
  • Stila Lash Visor Waterproof mascara in black.

Do I feel bold enough to wear Fire and Ice to work next week? I hope so!

Now go have fun, Lovelies!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Face of the Day with Stila Lavender Eyes

Lavender Eyes Look with Bright Glossy Lips
With my green eyes, purple and lavender shadows can look really cool. They almost work like neutrals in that they don't call a lot of attention to themselves, but, since they are complementary colors on the color wheel to the green, they really make my eyes pop!
Stila Palette with Lavender Strip second from left
 It's amazing how purple and lavender can work for day, and they also set off a bright coral lip really well. Although I did love playing with the blues, I have to admit, lavender is much more in my wheelhouse. 

So here's what I used:

Embryolisse Lait-Créme Concentré
Moisturizer: Thank you, Pixiwoo Sam--This Embryolisse stuff is indeed a great moisturizer! This was also part of my The Makeup Show LA haul, coming soon to a Youtube near you. I'll post when I do.

Foundation: Skin79 Super+ Beblesh Balm. I still love this BB cream for the smooth finish and all of the nice things it's supposed to be doing for me, especially the SPF 25. The L.A. sun is strong! Well, not these days, but usually, it's bright and powerful!

My Unii Palette with La Femme Blushes
Cheeks: Precious Plum on top of cheekbones, and the contour color included with the Stila Palette under cheekbones and on perimeter of face. The La Femme colors are gorgeous, and I love that since they were so economical, I can afford to have this many blush choices!

  • Stila lavender strip as shown above. The lightest color from lash line up to browbone, the middle color in crease and outer half of lid, and blended together with a fluffy brush.
  • Brows: Anastazia Brow Whiz in Ashe Blonde
  • Mascara: Stila Lash Visor Waterproof in Black
  • Eyeliner: The black color from Smashbox's Metallic Cream Liner Palette, another The Makeup Show LA purchase, and one I am loving!!! The brush included in the palette is great for tight-lining, which is the best technique for using liner to fill in between your lashes and really feature your eyes.  Here's a link to a tutorial on Tight lining.
Lips: Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter: Tutti Frutti and Peach Parfait layered together. These have such a nice glossy finish and feel like balm. They are fast moving past favorite in my world and heading toward Holy Grail product status. Joy!!!

That's it for today's look. Now go out there and have fun!

Cheers, All!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Face of the Day with Tenacious Teal from Maybelline Color Tattoo

Natural light in the car -- Scary Face, Sorry!

Natural light in the office

Eyes closed to show shadow detail

Who says mature faces shouldn't try fun eye shadow colors like Maybelline Eye Studio Color Tattoo Tenacious Teal?

After going to the LA Makeup Show, and picking up a free copy of ON MAKEUP MAGAZINE, I was inspired to try Tenacious Teal all around my eyes.  I have mostly green eyes that can look blue, gray or hazel in different lights, and I liked the way one model in the magazine looked with turquoise all around her eyes. I found I needed to neutralize the shadow a bit with some soft taupey colors from my NYX Nude on Nude palette to tone it down for work.  Here's what I used:

  • Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre
  • Skin79 Super Beblesh Balm
  • Coty Translucent Loose Powder (OK, I know I need to buy something more modern)
  • Urban Decay Primer Potion (I realize I may not have needed this with the Color Tattoo formulation, but my eyelids are extra oily, and at this point, it's just what I always use)
  • Selma Hayak brow pencil in Medium Blonde. This is a bit darker than my Anastasia pencil and I thought I might need more definition on my brows
  • Around upper and lower lash line: Maybelline Eye Studio Color Tattoo cream shadow in Tenacious Teal applied with flat liner brush, two layers on top and just a bit connecting the lower lash line with the outer corners
  • Powder shadow matching Tenacious Teal from my gigundo Crown Brush palette that has every single shade of the rainbow.  Love this! Makes me feel like an artist as I fumble around in my bathroom.
  • Taupe shade and gray blue shade from NYX Nude on Nude Palette at outer edges of upper lid. Also over a lighter cream shade all over lids, and into the crease in a V-shape connecting outer crease and outer edge of eyelids.
  • Tightline with Loreal HIP Color Truth Cream Eyeliner in black 905. Where have these gone from my CVS?  I really like this cream eyeliner and wanted to get it in a navy, brown and eggplant color, too. Hmmm.  So I tightline above and below my upper lash line with a very flat chisel brush from Bare Escentuals--now one of my favorite tools.
  • Blend all on lids with Beauty Blender to tone town blue a is daytime, after all.  Even though I do love a bit of drama at all times!
  • Stila Lash Visor Waterproof Mascara in black 01.
  • Tested out my new La Femme blush in Precious Plum, which is kind of a cool shade for my golden toned skin, so I needed a bit extra.
  • Contoured with Aveda Petal Essence bronzer in 165 Bronze Glow beneath cheekbones and all around perimeter of face. This one is so easy to blend and layer!
  • Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter in Peach Parfait and toned down with Sugar Frosting. I love the way you can fine tune your lip color by blending these babies together. I keep thinking about more colors I need to own of these. Addictive!!!
Thanks for reading! Don't forget to subscribe to this blog, or get it on your RSS reader!


Monday, March 19, 2012

Face of the Day with OCC Lip Tar

Who says mature faces can't wear color?

  • Embyolisse Lait Creme Concentre'
  • Skin79 Super Beblesh Balm
  • Urban Decay Primer Potion on upper and lower lids
  • Inglot Rainbow shadow, 119R lightest shade on lids up to brow bone, and medium pink shade in crease
  • Physician's formula Eyestrips for Green Eyes, Eyepop, the lavender gray shade along lashes
  • Inglot Rainbow shadow 120R, darkest charcoal matte shade along lash line
  • Michael Marcus concealer wheel mixed shades on dark areas on inner tear duct area and under eyes
  • MAC graphic pencil in black along upper lash line and tightlined on upper lids
  • Stila waterproof mascara
  • Anastasia brow wiz in Ashe Blonde
  • Center pink blush color and Contour from Stila palette bought at Costco--sorry-don't know names of shades!
  • Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar in Memento
  • Gloss it up with Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter in Tutti Frutti (Hello Pantone's Tangerine Tango!)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Makeup Show LA - Photo Gallery

The Makeup Show LA was so much fun, with amazing vendors, terrific deals, training. It was a floor full of yummy-happy-want-love-love.  I've promised myself my first YouTube video will be the haul I got from here.  Love those pro prices! It was so cool to run into a couple of my favorite YouTube beauty bloggers, pursebuzz and MakeupDelight2009

For now, check out some of my prettiest photos!

 Inglot Counter
 New OCC Spring Collection
 Naked Cosmetics Counter
 Harajuki Sugarpill Ladies
More Gorgeous Obsessive Compulsive Pigments!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

What's your favorite concealer?

I have used Amazing Cosmetics, Covergirl Simply Ageless, Paula Dorf, and a few others, but all of them seem to cake on my skin. What's your favorite concealer and why? Leave me a comment!


Depotting Adventure with Unii Cosmetics Palettes

Unii Cosmetic palettes are beautiful, solid, packable, and come in pretty resin colors with a bit of sparkle.

When you travel, if you're like me you want to bring along the most fun makeup options so you can change it up, say from day to night, or from warm and tropical to cool and overcast, but with all of these little palettes and compacts, it's hard. They take up too much room, you have to dig in your bag to find what you want. With Unii palettes you can organize what you have, and swap pieces an and out as needed.

I got my sisters and Mom one Unii palette each for Christmas. I told them about depotting and how to do it.  I even did a little demo. Every palette also comes with instructions on this, and Unii's site has instructions, and there are many videos on Youtube showing how to do it. The other ladies in my family opted to go to Aveda and MAC and buy new refills, which you can pop in without attaching the magnetic strips.

For my first palette, I used the flatiron technique to depot 2 Loreal quads, a Cinema Secrets blush, and a Clinique brow shadow pan. Then I bought an Aveda bronzer.

This time around I thought I'd try Goss Makeup Artist's oven technique.  For non-brits, start with your oven at 220 degrees F.  Cover a cookie tray with aluminum foil. You don't have to pop out the inner plastic casing as you do with the flatiron method. Just put your pieces in for about 5-6 minutes.

  1. Before putting the makeup in the oven, set up your work area with the following: Xacto blade, 90% rubbing alcohol and makeup pads, q-tips for fine work, small clean white towel with one nice smooth side
  2. Lay your white towel flat with smooth side up.
  3. Pop the pans out of the container using the Xacto blade as a lever--be careful and patient
  4. Lay each pan of makeup product-side down on the smooth towel, soak a pad in the rubbing alcohol, and gently scrub the back and sides of the pan until all, and I do mean all of the glue is gone.
  5. You can use the Xacto to scrape off stubborn bits of glue, but clean it off again before using it as a lever to pop out more pans.
  6. Once your pans are clean, use a scissors to cut magnetic strips the size of your pans, and stick them on the back.  If you need to know the color/brand of your makeup for future replacement, you an use a fine sharpie to write that info on the magnetic strip, but wait for it do dry completely so when you pop it into your palette it won't stain the bottom of it.
  7. Voila--your makeup is exactly where you want it, and you are Master of the Universe!
Some tips:
  • Work fast and pull the pans out of their compacts right away.  The glue will harden and stiffen again as it cools
  • While using an Xacto blade to get in between the metal pan and the plastic housing, be patient and careful about this.  It's easy to make a boo-boo and then that blade is scraping at your precious product, flaking it away
  • It's OK to be pushing your product into the towel a bit as you scrub off the glue--this means your product will be pushed in their even more firmly than before, which you want, since you may now be packing it to go places.
  • Don't try this with paper-based palettes, as I did with my Pixi palette. The paper gets pulpy and doesn't come off, and it's a mess.
  • Some makeup is domed and thicker than others, like the little blue, black and white Sephora trio I depotted.  At first it may hit the mirror on the top of the Unii palette a bit.  But it just fits.  Be careful you stay within the height spec of these palettes so you don't have any accidents.
  • The oven method works best with big long pans like the Physician's formula Green Pop eyes strip I depotted here, and the Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick. The shimmer brick was also thick and tall, but it fit with a bit of room to spare into the Unii palette.
  • Without the oven method I never could have depotted the tiny little pans in that Lancome gift with purchase palette, so I'm glad I discovered this technique--Thanks, Wayne Goss!
  • Depotting lots of makeup at once from different kinds of packaging may take you longer than you think, so set aside some time.
  • You may need to pop your makeup back in the oven if you take too long and the glue re-dries.
  • It can be messy, but it's fun, and the result is worth it.  Check out my photos.
That's it, Thanks for reading, now go have fun!