Sunday, August 25th, 2013

Reader Janisse made a request to see top picks for crease colors, and I couldn’t narrow it down to five across all colors, so I thought I’d start off with five browns!

  1. Urban Decay Secret Service — matte, medium-dark brown with a slight gray tint
  2. MAC Omega — light-medium brown with gray
  3. MAC Charcoal Brown is a dark brown with slight red tones
  4. Inglot #363 — dark brown with red tones
  5. Inglot #337 — medium brown with warm undertones

What’s your favorite brown eyeshadow to use in the crease?

Monday, August 19th, 2013

From blushes to lipsticks, I have my personal five favorites for fall lip color! This idea is courtesy of readers Maribel, Sara, Shahnaz, Camille, and Rebecca, who all wanted to see some great shades for autumn. As always, I look forward to hearing about your top five!

  1. NARS Train Bleu — matte, purple berry
  2. Burberry Bright Plum — bright, bold berry-pink
  3. MAC Endless Drama — deep red
  4. Buxom Runaway — rusty plum
  5. Urban Decay Venom — shimmering berry

What are your top five fall lip colors?

Sunday, August 4th, 2013

These are my very, very favorite lipstick formulas (in no particular order!) at the moment.

What’s your favorite lipstick formula?

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Maybelline Vibrant Mandarin NARS Taos Zoya Beatrix YSL Vert d'Orient Illamasqua Supernatural Burberry Cameo Pink Burberry Cameo Pink OCC New Wave OCC New Wave Urban Decay Radium Sephora Fairytale Marc Jacobs The Starlet

The Tempting 10 features my top product picks for the upcoming month, and these are all products I’ve reviewed in the past (you can click around the image above or use the links below to see more photos, swatches, etc.). I think it’s a great way for me to share old favorites (but always ones that are permanent!) and highlight recent limited editions that have captured my attention.  Asking me to narrow anything down to a top ten is difficult, but I’ve tried to capture products across brands, price points, and even types, for a more well-rounded list.

August is that month that, for me, will always be the last real month of summer, even if technically it’s not over.  I think a lot of it has to do with being in school until I was 25, so August meant back-to-school shopping, enjoying the last days with no essays, no textbooks, and no looming exams, and getting away with (at least some of the time) doing nothing.  Now that I’ve graduated from school, summer is a little different, but there’s a part of me that still gets nervous when August 1st pops up on the calendar, because I think, “Nooo, school!”  To that end, I look at the month as one filled with fun, which is why my favorites are vibrant and rich.  I also think with the hot temperatures we see in August, brighter colors just feel so appropriate, and then formulas that are minimalist or long-wearing are musts.  I love how one statement color, whether on eyes, lips, or nails (or wherever else!) can instantly make one look alive and colorful and present without spending a lot of time or having to worry about it breaking down easily.

Bonus: a lot of these products work well for anyone hurried in the mornings or doesn’t want to touch-up a lot during the day–so perfect for those of you who are heading back to school this fall.

  1. Maybelline Vibrant Mandarin — a rich, vibrant orange-red for the perfect pop of color in the summer when you want to look a little done up but not actually wear a lot of makeup
  2. NARS Taos — a bolder, super pigment-rich shade that can be worn subtly or intensely in a burnt red with gold shimmer–the more you blend and buff it into the skin, the more glowy it looks
  3. Zoya Beatrix — a sparkling, dazzling tangerine for your nails that wears well, too
  4. YSL Vert d’Orient — a rich, decadent teal cream that makes me think of swimming pools, tropical islands, and vacation
  5. Illamasqua Supernatural — a dewy, bronzy glow that gives skin a wet, shimmering look
  6. Burberry Cameo Pink — a beautiful, glossy coral-pink shimmered with gold with semi-opaque color coverage
  7. OCC New Wave — glossy, shiny, stained glass color that is lighter than lipstick but still more pigmented than traditional gloss; New Wave being a pinky-red with subtle cool undertones–like a juicy watermelon for your lips
  8. Urban Decay Radium — a deep blue with a frosted finish and would work well paired with golds, greens, aquas, and teals (if the eyeshadow is too much, there is always the eyeliner!)
  9. Sephora Fairytale — shimmer like a mermaid with this blue-based teal that has green and gold shimmer; I love wearing shades like this (I am a teal eyeliner junkie) on the lower lash line with not much else on the eyes for an instant burst of color
  10. Marc Jacobs The Starlet — it’s a lovely palette, period, but I think it’s a nice transition piece from summer to fall, and August, no doubt, is going to be an interesting month for MJB, since we’ll see the full release and I can’t wait to hear what the beauty world says about the range!

I’d also like to take a moment in this post to plead with Tom Ford to make his Cream Colors in Escapade and Pink Haze permanent, because had they not completely sold out months ago (part of the summer collection), they would have earned a spot here most definitely.

I hope you’ll consider sharing your must-haves for August in the comments! Here’s a quickie list to get you started…

  • Must-Have Eye Products:
  • Must-Have Cheek/Face Products:
  • Must-Have Lip Products:
  • Must-Have Hair/Skin Products:
Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

Urban Decay Naked Skin Ultra Definition Pressed Finishing Powder
Urban Decay Naked Skin Ultra Definition Pressed Finishing Powder

Urban Decay Naked Skin Ultra Definition Pressed Finishing Powder ($34.00 for 0.26 oz.) is supposed to be a “silky, weightless finishing powder with a luminous, demi-matte Naked finish.” It’s designed to set your makeup and reduce shine, so it can be used after you’ve applied your foundation initially as well as later on during the day as a touch-up powder.

Urban Decay recommends Light for shades 0.5 through 3.0; Medium Light for shades 2.0 through 4.0; Medium for shades 4.5 through 6.5; Medium Dark for shades 6.0 through 8.0; and Dark for shades 8.0 through 12.0. I used Medium over 4.0 in the photos, for reference. I applied it using Urban Decay’s Good Karma Finishing Brush. The texture is soft, incredibly finely-milled, and feels like a silky powder as it goes onto the skin. Applied over Urban Decay’s Naked Liquid Foundation, it made the resulting finish more matte and definitely more “blurred.”

It boosted the wear of the liquid foundation by another hour, so I was able to get eight and a half hours of wear before my t-zone started to show some fading, which started to be noticeable after nine and a half hours of wear. If used to touch-up, then the foundation looks mostly intact even after eleven hours of wear. I liked how well it softened the look of the skin without appearing powdery, but I did miss some of the subtle luminosity of the liquid foundation, so I might opt to use this more as a touch-up powder a few hours into wear (personally).  The powder was supposed to have a luminous and demi-matte finish, but it read rather matte when I tested it.

The Glossover

product

Medium

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup
Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup

Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup ($39.00 for 1.0 oz.) is supposed to be a “weightless” and “invisible” foundation with a “luminous, demi-matte finish” and “buildable coverage.” There are eighteen shades to choose from with shades ending in zero indicating a warm-toned shade, and shades ending with a five are for cooler complexions.

I used 4.0, which was somewhat too yellow on me (compared to my natural skin tone)–I’m actually curious whether 3.5 or 4.5 would be a better match for me. I ended up blending all the way down my neck to help it match my skin better. It is also more forgiving, because it is a lighter coverage formula, so it does sheer out. The consistency is thin, liquidy, but it doesn’t feel watery or runny. It’s easy to apply, spread, and blend out without using more than you need. While it is naturally a sheerer foundation, it does build to light-medium coverage and covers my natural redness, a few acne/post-acne marks, and evens out my skin tone overall. You can definitely see the impact foundation has in the before and after photos!

The foundation dries down (without using powder) within ten minutes or so, and what you see in photographs is a semi-matte finish where there is enough luminosity in the finish that it doesn’t look flat. It’s not sticky, and it’s comfortable to wear because it doesn’t feel heavy or mask-like. It’s supposed to have “light-diffusing spheres for a soft-focus finish,” and what it actually translates to is smoother-looking skin, even if you don’t really have it. On my normal-to-dry skin, it wears well for seven and a half hours, then it starts to fade around my t-zone, but it looked rather nice even nine hours later–it didn’t turn patchy or fade too noticeably.

The Glossover

product

Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →