Thursday, July 16th, 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 191 Square Foundation Brush

MAC 191 Square Foundation Brush ($32.00) is a flat, square-shaped brush made out of synthetic fibres. It’s fairly firm, and the edge of the brush is fine and firm. Although it’s touted as a foundation brush, I prefer using this to apply creamy products like face primers, moisturizers, etc. I just don’t find it works nearly as well for foundation as brushes like the 109, 187, or 182. I do like the edge, though, because it can give you crisper lines when you want them, and it also lets you get into hard-to-reach areas like the nose. This is probably one of my least loved face brushes, just because I prefer so many others over it.

How do you like to use this brush?

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Wednesday, July 15th, 2009


Make Up For Ever #26 Eyeshadow

Five more purples!

  • #26 is a bright fuchsia pink with a matte finish. It’s extremely pigmented, and it feels smooth to the touch.
  • #52 is a softly shimmered fuchsia-mauve shade of pink. It has slight silver sheen/iridescence, and it is fairly pigmented, particularly for an iridescent.
  • #151 is a shimmery, light whitish-lilac color. It is probably one of the more frosty-finished shadows I’ve played with from the brand (an observation–not a negative or a positive!).
  • #39 is a matte plummy wine shade. It feels a bit cool-toned and a little more on the purple side than similarly colored #131.
  • #131 is a reddish-plum shade, and it has just a touch of shimmer in it (nearly nil). Compared to #39, it’s redder, and it doesn’t feel as cool-toned.

Which of these are your favorites?

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Wednesday, July 15th, 2009


Oil Slick

Urban Decay: Oil Slick, Naked, Confession Lipsticks

New for fall from Urban Decay are three new shades of lipstick ($22.00 each). All three have a satiny, slightly glossy finish, and they feel very moisturizing on the lips. They smell sweetly scented — I think I detected a bit of caramel-ness to it, too. Ever since Urban Decay launched their lipstick line, I’ve always been a huge admirer of the creative packaging. I still love it, but it has to be some of the more impractical packaging I’ve come across, just because the label is on the “top” but the daggers are out of the bottom (which don’t stand very nicely). But I really do love it anyway. It’s just so beautiful to look at.

Both Oil Slick and Confession should be worn with a lip liner (clear or otherwise), or you could wear this with Urban Decay’s new Lip Primer Potion ($20.00). I haven’t yet tried it, but I’m planning to see how the two work together later on (and will definitely post some comparisons for you all, too). These two shades tend to settle into natural lip lines and may bleed, too, without the proper base!

  • Oil Slick is a sheer, glossy black with small, silver sparkles. It’s extremely wearable–not necessarily on its own–when you layer it with other shades. Try topping it with a really rich red or pink!
  • Naked is creamy, pinky shade with a little bit of beige to tone it down and gold shimmer to warm it up. Love it. LOVE.
  • Confession is a sheer, glossy burgundy-wine shade. It goes on much brighter/lighter than it looks in the tube–so don’t be afraid of the near blackberry color it appears to be. (Actually, the transformation reminded me a bit of how Clinique’s Black Honey is!)

Naked is my new obsession, though. It’s absolutely stunning on lips. It’s totally my-lips-but-better (MLBB) and yet way more complex and interesting than just MLBB. It’s this glossy pinky color with gold shimmer/sparkle. I feel like I’m wearing a lip color that brightens my whole face without anyone really having a clue I’m wearing any. This shade really grabbed me from the get-go, even if it’s not necessarily a unique or eye-catching (hey, it’s no hot pink!).

Anyone else check these out yet?

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Tuesday, July 14th, 2009


Make Up For Ever #79 Eyeshadow

Let’s talk purples!

  • #79 is a dirty mauve-plum kind of shade. It’s a bit muted, which makes it an excellent color for smoky eyes, but it’s also nice for subduing bolder colors. It has a slight iridescence to it, but it isn’t overly frosty. I thought the pigmentatoin was good as well.
  • #160 is a matte eggplant shade of purple. I really love using this with pinks and purples in the crease. It also works really well all over the lid and then a matte black in the crease for an ultra smoky eye. #160 is smooth and has plenty of color for you to enjoy.
  • #142 is a shimmery medium purple with a silver sheen/shimmer to it. This isn’t quite as lovely as I was hoping, as it could pump out more color right away, but it layers decently so you can still get a more intense color if that’s what you want (like me).
  • #92 is one of the brand’s more famous eyeshadows. It’s a matte, bold shade of violet-purple. It’s incredibly bright, and it goes on smoothly and packs a lot of color from the get go. I haven’t used this yet in a look, but I’m definitely eager to!
  • #89 is a soft, pearly fuchsia-purple shade with slight violet sheen. It reminds me of a lighter, less frosty version of MAC’s Stars ‘n Rockets.

Which of these are your favorites?

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Tuesday, July 14th, 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 190 Foundation Brush

MAC 190 Foundation Brush ($32.00) is a flat, paddle-shaped brush with very rounded edges and almost comes to a soft, rounded point. It’s fairly small, and it is thin. It’s a firm, densely-packed brush with fibres that make it easy to use with liquid and cream products, particularly foundations. I like it more for initially applying liquid/cream products onto the face rather than as a tool to blend or actually give me full coverage. I find fluffy brushes like the 109 are much more to my taste for application of foundations, but they can get a bit gummed up if you simply get the foundation on it from the get-go. Often using the 190 to dab on the product to my face, and then using the 109 to blend it out, works best for me. While a quality brush, I rarely reach for it, so I wouldn’t consider it a must-have.

How do you like to use this brush?

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Tuesday, July 14th, 2009

Urban Decay Ink For Eyes is creamy, eye liner goodness!

For fall, Urban Decay launched Ink For Eyes ($22.00 each), which is a brand new cream eyeliner available in six shades just dead-on perfect for the upcoming fall season. Urban Decay tells us their secret ingredient is Nylon 12, which is an ingredient that limits drag for a smoother, more precise application while it softens and absorbs excess oil. I put on Zero yesterday, and it didnt smudge or fade on me, so I’m pretty happy with the wear on these so far.

The packaging is sleek and edgy, with a peacock drawing on the cover of the gunmetal-gray box. Flip it open, and you’ll find a sleek, narrow mirror, a double-ended brush (smudge tip and angled brush), plus the star – a strip of the actual ink.

  • Binge is a rich, dark navy blue. It’s blue without being bright, and it’s dark without losing all of the blue. It’s definitely more navy blue than black-blue, too. You can also go less heavy to get a little more blue to stand out or go heavier and get a deeper color.
  • Empire is a deep violet-purple with a little bit of sheen/glimmer. It’s pigmented, smooth, and really creamy when applied with a brush.
  • Demolition is a deep, dark brown. It’s not too warm–almost seems cool-toned to me–and intense. Very creamy and chocolately.
  • Zero is an intense, rich black. There’s really not much else to describe it as — it’s really quite black! I am *all* over liners and mascaras that are this rich in black.
  • Loaded is a medium-deep forest green with tiny greenish-silver shimmer. It has good color pay off, and I love that it’s noticeably green, but it isn’t bright or OTT at all.
  • Pyrotechnics is a sheer, glittery base. It has multi-colored glitter and goes on mostly clear. Layer it over one of the others or underneath one of the others to add more glitz!

Of the six, my favorites would have to be Zero (for how pitch-black it is), Empire (because can you just imagine how gorgeous it would be with Fishnet layered on top?), and Pyrotechnics (love that you can add glitter in an easy-to-use pencil form). What are your favorites? Have you tried these yet?

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