Saturday, July 4th, 2009


Eyeshadows: #5

Let’s dive into some of Make Up For Ever’s orange and yellow eyeshadows! Personally, I skipped on some of the more intense, straight yellows, just because I tend not to look good in those shades (Chrome Yellow, anyone?), so I need more time to swatch and play with them in person before getting any of those.

  • #5 is a matte orange-coral. Smooth, pigmented, and easy to use, #5 is quickly becoming a favorite. It’s nice on the eyes, but I love it as a blush. Just be careful, because a little goes a long way, and it’s better to build up than buff out.
  • #10 is a shimmery, true golden yellow. This is the equivalent of Goldmine eyeshadow with a little less orange and less frostiness.
  • #153 is a peachy-orange shade with gold shimmer. When I saw it at IMATS, it reminded me of a deeper MAC Say Yeah eyeshadow (which was limited edition, and I also adore it!). It is definitely similar, but it is a bit more intense. I love this to highlight cheeks on top of #5. It just gives it a nice glow and softness. This also works well on the eyes, too.  And if #5 is a new blush favorite, #153 is a new cheek highlighting favorite.
  • #102 is a matte, pale beige-y color (or off-white, if you prefer). They describe it as “eggshell,” and it’s a rather apt description. It makes for a good neutral matte highlighter when you may already have frost overkill on the eyes.
  • #101 is a soft, pale white-gold with pale gold shimmer. Of the shadows I’ve really worked with so far, this is one of the few that has been more disappointing. I find the pay off to be a bit glittery/chunky and not smooth like I’ve come to expect from the brand. It also seems to be the same when used in application, too. I thought I’d use it as a nice highlighter, but it doesn’t work well for that purpose either.

Which of these are your favorites?

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Friday, July 3rd, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 165 Tapered Cheek & Highlighter Brush

MAC 165 Tapered Cheek & Highlighter Brush ($34.00) is a medium-sized, tapered face brush with natural bristles. This was a limited edition brush that was launched with Brunette, Blonde, and Redhead in early 2009. It will be making a reappearance in October 2009, for those who wish to purchase it, too. (As of time of this writing, it is still available via Nordstrom.com.) I adore using this brush to highlight cheek bones. It just works effortlessly and places the highlight perfectly. It is a soft, dense brush, so it picks up color easily, deposits well, and doesn’t eat up product. It works well to blend out color and powder products, too.  This is one of my favorite brushes, so I would definitely urge you to pick it up if an opportunity presents itself!

How do you like to use this brush?

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Friday, July 3rd, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 150 Large Powder Brush

MAC 150 Large Powder Brush ($42.00) is a large, domed-shape densely-packed brush. It’s ideal for use with loose and pressed powders. I do believe MAC encourages using this with blush, too, but I find it far too large and dense for that purpose; particularly because there are so many better brushes to use (like the 116 and 129). This isn’t the softest brush I own by MAC, but it’s still incredibly soft and doesn’t feel scratch to me. Personally, I find I only use this for applying loose/pressed powders to set my makeup. I find it is fluffy enough to blend and give me thorough coverage, but it is dense enough that product doesn’t get wasted. I use this brush everyday, but I do wish it was more of a multi-tasker for its price!

How do you like to use this brush?

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Thursday, July 2nd, 2009


Make Up For Ever #158 Eyeshadow

Make Up For Ever Eyeshadows ($19.00 each) and Diamond Eyeshadows ($20.00) each are sold individually in single-sized compacts. What’s nifty about the compacts is that they’re already magnetized and there’s no depotting necessary. If you need to pop one out, just take a pair of tweezers to do so (I do this to prevent any “oops!”). You can also purchase the eyeshadows in pan-form only (I believe that those are $13.00 each) and then fit them into 10-pan palettes (I believe those are $13 as well).

  • #158 is a matte, medium red. It goes on smoothly, has good pigmentation, and it doesn’t have a chalky texture. Because of the intensity of the red pigment, this color may stain lids temporarily. Compared with 99, this is a much subtler red. I like that it doesn’t have any noticeable brown in it, so it doesn’t come out brick red.
  • #99 is a matte, bright apple red. It feels like velvet when swatched, and it packs a lot of color without much product. This one, like 158, may also stain lids temporarily.
  • #75 is a matte, bright hot pink. This is the shade I used in yesterday’s look, and it definitely gives you a nice pop of bright pink color. It, too, will stain your lids, though. I didn’t wear a base beyond my lid, and anywhere I had #75 above my lid, it stained. It is pretty easy to work with and feels like a buttery matte with no chalkiness to it.
  • #85 is a shimmery, soft pink. This is a pretty color, and it reminds me of MAC Pink Freeze, just not as gritty/glittery. This is smoother, and while it doesn’t pack a lot of color, it is a nice all-over-lid shade to brighten up eyes.
  • #303 is a shimmery, pale pastel pink. All Make Up For Ever shadows that start with a 3 (e.g. #3_ _) are Diamond Eyeshadows. According to the brand, Diamond Eyeshadows is a combinatoin of their Diamond Powders and their regular Eyeshadows. No matter what you call it, they’re shimmery and iridescent. This is almost like a pink-meets-lilac color, but it runs a bit pastel and cool-toned with subtle silvery-pink shimmer.

To avoid staining:  make sure to layer a base underneath wherever you’re going to put a shadow that has the potential to stain.  When I used #75 on my eyes, it only stained above my crease, where I laid it down directly onto skin.  The staining does fade after about a day or so, though.

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Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 138 Tapered Face Brush

MAC 138 Tapered Face Brush ($52.00) is a large, extremely tapered brush made out of natural fibers. It is extremely dense, and it is relatively firm. The end of the brush tapers into a rounded tip with angled sides. The brush shapes reminds me of the 226 or 224, except several times larger. The bristles feel incredibly soft against the skin, and I have found mine to shed very rarely (which basically means I can’t remember it really shedding at all). The 138 can be used for a variety of applications: creams, liquids, highlighters, blushes, and contouring. It is touted by MAC as a contouring and highlighting tool, but like most brushes, usage depends more on you and your needs. To contour with this brush, simply slant it against your face with the tip pointing towards your mouth. To highlight, just use the tip of the brush on the areas you would like to highlight. It is one of MAC’s pricier brushes, but I’d say it’s completely worth the investment!

How do you like to use this brush?

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Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 129 Powder/Blush Brush

MAC 129 Powder/Blush Brush ($34.00) is a is a rounded, dome-shaped brush with a more rounded dome than other brushes. Of MAC’s various face brushes, I do find that the 129 does have a tendency to be scratchier than others, but it is definitely something that gets better with time. After a few washes, the brush is as soft as most MAC brushes, and it feels fluffier than when you first purchase it. It sheds occasionally, but not enough to make me hesitate on purchasing it again. I personally find this is better as a blush or bronzer brush than a powder brush, because it isn’t fluffy enough for my liking when it comes to applying loose or pressed powder all over. MAC does make a short handled version of the 129 (this is a brush of the same quality and caliber as the long handled 129–just to distinguish it from special edition 129 brushes), but I personally prefer longer handles.

How do you like to use this brush?

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