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How-to Clean your Makeup Brushes
Start by choosing either a mild shampoo or brush cleanser. There is a slew of brush cleansers designed with makeup in mind from just about every brand that also has brushes (and some that don’t!). You can also use a mild shampoo that’s designed for human hair as well. Either method works just as well–it depends on what you like.
Shampooing requires at least an eight hour window for drying (a little less for eye brushes, a little longer for denser, larger brushes); brush cleansers are often alcohol-based and can be used as a spot cleaner between applications or dry within minutes as opposed to hours.
If you use brush cleanser, read the instructions. I know, that sounds way too basic, and almost like a cop out, but brush cleansers vary in technique. Some brush cleansers require water, others don’t. For instance, Sephora’s Brush Shampoo works much like a shampoo and requires the same process, while on the other hand, shu uemura’s Brush Cleanser has you pour the brush cleanser into a small glass, swirl the brush in it, and then press the brushes against a towel to reshape. Often, an alcohol-based cleanser is a process that doesn’t need water and will also dry faster than cleansers that need water. Lay flat on a towel to dry. Always lay your brushes flat (or clothes-pin them so they hang with brushes pointed downward) to avoid water getting into the handle and ferrule (which can cause rust or deterioration of the brush).
If you use shampoo, begin by wetting the brush you want to clean with lukewarm water (never hot) and then dip in shampoo/cleanser. Brush the brush back and forth to absorb the shampoo and start to work up a lather/foam. With larger brushes (like for powder or blush), I also like to squirt a little shampoo into the center of the brush and really work up the lather. After you’ve worked the shampoo into the brush, gently run it under water and repeat the back and forth brushing motion until the water runs clean (and there are no signs of suds, either). Gently squeeze out any excess water and lay flat on a towel to dry. Always lay your brushes flat (or clothes-pin them so they hang with brushes pointed downward) to avoid water getting into the handle and ferrule (which can cause rust or deterioration of the brush).
If your brushes are incredibly dirty or stained, try using an oil-based product, either jojoba oil or a marketed “cleansing oil” (Bobbi Brown, MAC, and shu uemura all make one). Apply a little bit to the brush, swirl and work it in, and then add a bit of lukewarm water. Swirl some more, get a little lather going, and then rinse until the water runs clean.
Or if you’re more of a listener, here’s a video on how to clean your makeup brushes.
Find out about the basics of good brush care! Continue reading →
Makeup You Wanna Eat: Pinks & Purple
This look reminded me of cupcakes or maybe ice cream. Either way, I was like, “Mmm, I want some food!” (Preferrably something sweet, much to the dismay of my thighs…) For those who follow me on Twitter, *this* was the look I just wasn’t lovin’. Encouragement from my girl Pursebuzz made me OK enough to post this anyway Though I totally meant to post this early this morning, but between studying for my final tonight and writing a final paper… it all kind of got lost in the mix!
By the by, I also tried out wearing MAC Blooming Lovely Lipstick + English Accents Lipglass, and I can see it working much better on someone with cooler undertones or even a paler complexion. I don’t always post looks that are most suitable to me, because I know not everyone who reads the blog is warm-toned and may prefer to see some cooler looks that may look better on them than I
You will need the following…
- Eyes: MAC Soft Ochre Paint Pot (neutral beige base), MAC Fuchsia Pigment (medium bright pink), MAC Give Me Liberty of London Eyeshadow (pastel pink), MAC Free to Be Eyeshadow (matte coral), MAC Dame’s Desire Eyeshadow (medium-dark iridescent purple), MAC Femme-fi Eyeshadow (neutral highlighter), Urban Decay Lust 24/7 Liner (purple), MAC Plushlash Mascara (black)
- Face: Make Up For Ever HD Foundation (140), Laura Mercier Setting Powder
- Cheeks: MAC Prim & Proper Blush (nude-pink), MAC Shell Pearl Beauty Powder (peach champagne)
- Lips: MAC Petals & Peacocks Lipstick (bright pink), MAC English Accents Lipglass (light medium pink with lilac)
- Brushes: 226 (fluffy crease brush), 219 (pointed crease brush), 249 (flat, firm brush), 239 (fluffy shadow brush), 116 (dense blush brush), 165 (tapered blush brush)
- Substitutes: Give Me Liberty of London = Girlie (Pen ‘n Pink, if you have it – it’s discontinued now!); Dame’s Desire = Creme de Violet; Prim & Proper = Tenderling; Shell Pearl = Soft & Gentle; Petals & Peacocks = Girl About Town; English Accents = Cultured
For eyes, start by applying Soft Ochre paint pot as your eyeshadow base all over the eye area with the 249. With the 239 and water-based mixing medium (or water), apply Fuchsia pigment all over the lid area. Using the 239, apply Give Me Liberty of London eyeshadow on the inner third of the eyelid. Next, apply Free to Be eyeshadow on the middle third of the eyelid and lightly blend with the inner corner. Darken the outer third of the lid with Dame’s Desire eyeshadow with the 239, gently brushing it into the lower crease. Lightly blend Dame’s Desire eyeshadow, with the 239, on the outer corner and lid. To finish the eyeshadow look, sweep Femme-fi eyeshadow as a highlighter on the brow bone. Bring everything together by applying Lust eyeliner on the lower lash line and Gorgeous Gold eyeshadow lightly patted below the lower lash line with the 219 brush. Finish by sweeping lashes with Plushlash mascara.
For cheeks, apply Prim & Proper blush to the apples of the cheeks and sweep upwards towards the temple with the 116. With the 165, gently tap Shell Pearl beauty powder on the cheek bones to highlight.
For lips, apply Petals & Peacocks lipstick first, and then layer English Accents lipglass for a complementing lip.
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Guerlain Terracotta Collection for Summer 2010
Terracotta 4 Seasons ($74.00)
From the ultimate authority in bronzing comes Terracotta 4 Seasons: a variation in four steps to sculpt your tan all year long. The perfect gradation of caramelized tones, Terracotta 4 Seasons features four wonderfully matte shades to blend together and match every skin tone and season for an authentic tan and an incredibly natural result. Its secret to unprecedented luminosity lies in the formula, enriched with pure gold, that plays within the four tones for a tan that maintains radiance, no matter what the season. Includes SPF 10.
- Blondes (01)
- Brunettes (02)
Terracotta Gloss ($30.00) (Permanent)
- Sable (01)
- Sierra (02)
- Grenade (03)
- Ambre (04)
- Santal (05)
- Ebene (06)
Terracotta Light ($50.00) (Limited Edition)
The legendary iridescent bronzing powder is reinvented for spring/summer 2010 with intensely concentrated particles of mother-of-pearl to enhance already golden complexions. Warmed by copper accents for olive skin or glints of pink for fairer skin, this bronzing powder has never been this alluring. Nestled in a round, sunny case, these new harmonies feature five iridescent shades to adorn the complexion with an intense sunny glow: the first two intensify it, the next two warm it up, while the last one adds a final touch of light!
- Blondes Halees (01)
- Brunette Halees (02)
Terracotta Fard Metal Eye Shadow & Liner ($35.00) (Limited Edition)
This elegant retractable metallic pen with its brown and gold design encloses a fine and silky potion. Slightly creamy with perfect glide, the eye shadow/liner formula glows with light. Its ethereal texture goes on in a caress and immediately smoothes the eyelid. The incredibly fine mother-of-pearl particles decorate the eyes with metallic sparkles. Ardent orange gold or shining taupe create beguiling eyes and can be applied as an eyeshadow or liner to illuminate and trace the eyes with enchanting light.
- Gold Rush (01)
- Smoky Metal (02)
Terracotta Khol ($35.00) (Limited Edition)
Guerlain’s legendary kohl is the promised land for enchanting and enigmatic eyes. For summer, the eyes slip into a halo of mystery, deep, enchanting brown with a perfect matte finish, for unmatched intensity.
Terracotta Touch ($40.00)
Even tanned complexions have areas of shadow — a highlighter is a must to perfect any complexion! The irresistible Terracotta Touch is the first highlighter in Guerlain’s cult favorite Terracotta collection. The ideal companion to enhance “Terracotta-tanned” or already sun-kissed skin, it plays on shadow and light to create a natural and even glowing complexion. In just a few strokes of the brush, the face dazzles with natural beauty and radiance, as though the sun has gently caressed the skin.
- Blondes (01)
- Brunettes (02)
Terracotta Teint d’Ailleurs ($46.00)
It is a new basic for beautiful skin, the first tinted moisturizer in the collection, it captures the summer’s sun-kissed radiance and holds true on the sun from morning until night. The unprecedented texture, part tinted gel and part cream melts away like silk, gliding over the skin to blend away imperfections, smooth and even out the complexion.
- Blondes (01)
- Brunettes (02)
Availability: March 2010 at select Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Sephora, Bloomingdales, and Bergdorf Goodman locations.
Make Up For Ever HD Blush: Truth or Dare, Walk of Shame, Quickie
Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Blush ($25.00 for 0.33 oz.) is an incredibly lightweight, cream blush. The HD Blush really surprised me, because I wasn’t quite sure whether this was going to be as amazing as the buzz over it already was. (Buzz makes me skeptical, I can’t help it!)
Much anticipated, it is now available through Sephora. The blushes are reasonably priced, and I imagine one jar will last you quite awhile as you hardly need any for enough color on your cheeks. These are pigmented if you want them to be, so go easy on the amount you use if you want subtle color. They also dry down quickly, so work fast to blend the color out so it looks natural and luminous. I used my 188 brush to apply it to my cheeks, and I found it worked just right to apply and blend out the color. (I used #6 Quickie very lightly in this look!)
When I wore these to test (I worn #6 Quickie on one cheek, #4 Walk of Shame on the other!), they lasted a solid eight hours without fading or budging. I think these are going to be perfect for summer, particularly for those in more sticky and humid climates. What is particularly nice is there is a huge shade range of fourteen different shades.
- #3 Truth or Dare is a vibrant fuchsia pink. Even when used lightly, it still packs plenty of color. It has a satin-y finish–slight sheen but not shimmer.
- #4 Walk of Shame is a pretty bubblegum pink that can be applied very sheerly or built up for a more intense pink. On me, I find this color a little too light/pale — it’s not a go-to shade for my medium, warm-toned skin, but it can work.
- #6 Quickie is a coral-orange with a satiny feel. It can be sheered out nicely if you want just a light coral flush or used more generously (and still, by “more generously” I mean, use just the tiniest bit more) for a deeper flush.
I can’t speak to the packaging, as the samples I received were in sample jars, but the packaging looks similar to other pump-jar packaging (but I imagine it might be smaller/shorter). The only thing I would be a little wary about is whether the pump pushes out too much, because you really need a tiny bit. Not even a pea-size amount!
If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ!
- Product: 29/30
- Value: 8/10
- Ease of Use: 4/5
- Packaging: 3/5
Recommendation: If you are a cream blush fiend, I think you’ll like the newest ones from Make Up For Ever!
What do you consider “bridal” makeup/look? What did you (or would you!) wear for your wedding day?
Something very subtle and natural. I’d go with a light pink-coral lip, a soft peach blush, and a mixture of matte and pearl golden brown shadows on the eyes. Oh, waterproof mascara, of course!
Thanks to Christina for this question!