October 31, 2010

Sunday night award and share some blog love!

The lovely Aina awarded me this nice Cherry on Top award :) Thanks Aina!
If you don't know her blog, go and check it. She writes in Norwegian but the pictures are beautiful since she's so pretty, and Google Translate does a great job at helping you understand the writing.



The rules for the awards are as follows: 
1. Thank the person you got it from
2. Copy the award to your blog
3. Share 3 things you like to do
4. Forward the award to 5 people who deserve it


Three things I like to do :

  1. Sleep! You guys have no idea :) And I really enjoyed the extra hour last night!
  2. Listen to music and sing really loud when I'm alone in my car
  3. Read
The blogs that I like and forward this award to:

October 30, 2010

Winter life-savers for skin.

I was chatting with a friend who's just back from a week at the London Muse Makeup School (I'm so jealous of her), she was complaining about her skin acting up because of the weather, tiredness and general crazy rythm of these past weeks.
This is how I feel a lot in Fall and Winter too. The first thing that make my skin change from normal/combo to dry/sensitive/totally crazy is central heating, and that's something we can't be without at the moment (and for the next 6 months), can we? The temperature variations, wind, cold etc. totally ruin my skin. Over the years I've found quite a few good products that really help, so I thought I'd pass my tricks.


1. Get a dry oil for your body.
I don't care for my body skin, really. I do the strict minimum in Summer time because a lot of skin shows, but then in the Winter, I tend to neglect it.  Big mistake, as it's really dry and I even get eczema if I let things go too far.
My solution: use a dry oil. Mine is Remederm from Louis Widmer Switzerland.





It's a spray, so it's very easy to put on and to blend. It dries within a minute so you can get dressed. It doesn't have much of a smell so it won't bother you or others.
I find it easier to stick to a body skincare routine using this than a body butter or another type of cream.
If you can't get this one, any dry oil will do and you can put it in a spray bottle.


2. The best mask for your face.
I have tried a billion face products. The one that works best, affordable and widely available is La Roche Posay Hydraphase Mask.



This used to come in a tube, which I liked because I went through huge amounts of this, but for the past couple of years it's sold by 2 individual doses in little bags. 
This mask looks like a thick blueish cream, which is slightly cooling when you apply it. It has a slight cucumber smell, very fresh and pleasant.
You put a thick coat of this at night and let it sink for 10 minutes. Then you wipe off the excess with a tissue, and go to sleep. The next morning, things are much better already.
I have sometimes used a smaller amount of this as a a day cream, where the situation was desperate.

I find one little bag does contain a lot, so I generally store the open bag in a clean, cool place and use the rest on the next day, I think 24 hours is OK. This way I don't waste any product.

3. Honey for the lips and hands.

I absolutely love the Nuxe Rêve de Miel (Honey Dream) range, as it feels luxurious, smells good, but is also extremely efficient!


I absolutely love this lipbalm and use it all year long. Unless most balms that I find drying because of the petroleum jelly in them, this one is very moisturizing, and it can also be used under lipstick.
It smells like honey and oranges, which is absolutely delicious. The formulation is quite thick and here are little beeds in the product that slightly exfoliate the lips. This is my holy grail lip treatment!



The hands and nails cream smells more like plants than honey but the scent doesn't linger very long so that's perfectly acceptable. The cream does sink in almost instantly and isn't sticky at all, which I really like. This has really helped me when my hands were in very bad condition. 
I usually apply this cream every night before bed time, as well as the lip time.

If this isn't enough for your hands...
I discovered this product last year, it was recommended by my pharmacist when the combination of cold weather and allergy to washing products had made my hands skin crack, peel and bleed. It's called VitaCitral soin TR for damaged hands.




This is formulated for people working in very drying and damaging environments (like concrete factories) and can virtually repair anything. This is basically a mix of aloe, glycerin and Vitamin A in a gel textured formulation. It feels like a coating on the hands, and if you apply thick coat at night and put your hands in cotton gloves (or socks, like I do), there is serious improvement overnight.

Now you know everything you need to know to pamper yourself and hopefully keep glowing skin all through Winter :)

October 29, 2010

The "I have a bloody cold but must go to work" look.

Even though I dress appropriately and wash my hand obsessively, I managed to catch a stupid cold - hence me not being around much these last few days.
However, I have a very busy week at work with a lot of meetings, which means I can't stay home and get the job done from my couch. To look presentable, makeup is the solution.

A lot of people would spontaneously put a lot of makeup on with the aim to create a healthy face, when they should actually be doing the opposite. Yes, folks, when you're sick and want to look good, less is more!
I'll let you judge if my theory and technique are convincing enough:



What you want to do is bring light to the face and conceal the redness, that's what is going to make you look fresh even though you are not.
Make sure your skin is moisturized and you don't have dry patches showing: I used Estee Lauder Idealist serum and Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré on my whole face, then added a bit of Mac Strobe Cream on the cheeks. This already makes you look much better, then you can proceed with the makeup.
I used:
Nars Sheer Glow foundation in Gobi
MUFE Full Cover concealer #5 for the face
Bobbi Brown concealer in Warm Ivory under the eyes
Givenchy le prisme visage Blooming in Apricot, lightly all over the face
Nars Zen blush to contour the cheekbones slightly
Illamasqua Lover blush on the apples of the cheeks.


For the eyes, catching the light is again your goal. I used:
Urban Decay Primer Potion Sin blended all over the lid and into the crease
A tiny bit of Mac Mistery e/s in the crease to give depth
Mac Milar e/s under the brows to highlight
Mac eyebrow pencil in Fling
YSL Faux-Cils mascara


My final touch and secret weapon is a tiny bit of transparent glittery liquid liner by Gosh, under the lower lashes. It does really catch the light without being really noticeable.


On the lips: Guerlain KissKiss Baby in Rosewood Nude (discontinued)


I learned the basic technique from this fantastic tutorial that I really recommend:





Now, if you allow me, I'm gonna go back to sneezing.

October 26, 2010

FOTD from the past week, and trying Nars Holidays goodies!

The good thing with Fall (or Autumn as we say around here) is that it's perfect to wearing bold lips. And I love bold lips!



Wearing Mac M.A.C Red with winged liner. Foundation is Mac Face & Body (C1) and blush is Nars Exhibit A - just the tiniest amount of it, of course.


Wearing Mac CB95 lipstick, which is totally underrated in my opinion. It's an orange with a bit of pink in it that makes it very wearable, but still quite bright. You probably saw it in my favorites of the past months.
Blush is Bite of an Apple from the Mac VV collection.


Then, onto the Nars products!


I'm wearing Melusine eyeshadow duo (on top of Nars smudgeproof eyeshadow primer, of course) and Sex Appeal blush.

The pale lavender in Melusine is very pretty, and has that icy but not shimmery texture that I like so much in Nars eyeshadows (Habanera and Underworld being good examples). The darker side is matte, and from what I have seen online, I thought it would be different. When I first saw it, I felt like it looked a lot like Daphne. But it actually has less blue in it. Like any matte shadow, it does require a bit of work and some building up, and I'm not totally satisfied of the outer corner work on my right eye, on this pic. You need time and patience to make it work, but it's certainly a gorgeous color.

Sex Appeal is a very very VERY pale matte apricoty peach blush with just the tiniest hint of pink in it. Nars described it as a perfect contour color but honestly I can't see how that would be. It's so pale that on my NC15 cheeks, it just managed to create a light flush. A very pretty subtle flush, though. But I did feel the need to add a bit more color on the apples of the cheeks.
I think trying to make this work if your about NC/NW 20-25 would be hopeless, and I'd consider this a subtle, almost neutral blush. It looks very fresh and a bit "back from cold outside", but it's definitely pale.

What have you been wearing lately?

October 24, 2010

Bring on the falsies!

I had a party this week-end, and I was totally uninspired as of what look to do.  The only thing I wanted to do was trying on false eyelashes, as I had never worn any before (shock horror!).  I recently got a few pairs from Illamasqua and decided to wear these:


They're #13.
But I couldn't go out with lashes only, could I?
So for the rest, since I have an addiction to dresses cut in Courrèges-style, I thought going for a retro 60's Bardot look would be fun.

Excuse the bad light on the pics, they were taken very late (early?) after I came back home.



See? They are dramatic!



Other products used for this look: Mac Blankety lipstick on an overdrawn lip, Mac Warm Soul blush, and for the eyes, light brows and black smokey made with UD Perversion on top of brown pencil.

I was a bit intimidated by the lashes, but I managed to put them on quite easily with tweezers, and to keep them on 7+ hours, which isn't bad for a first time!



Do you like falsies? What kind? Do you wear them daily or for special occasions?


October 22, 2010

Estee Lauder Double Wear Mascara


A couple of months ago I got an Estee Lauder gift with purchase, and there was a mini Double Wear mascara in it. I rencently decided to give it a try because I thought the brush looked nice.

The claim: a zero smudge lenghtening mascara, Lash-Xtender™ Brush elongates, separates and surrounds each lash in glossy, intensified color.

The result: well this IS lenghtening, hello long lashes! What I like a lot, too, is the fact that you can grab the lashes from the very roots, which makes the lashline look more dense just like when you tightline it. The brush does really separate the lashes and makes it easy to grab the lower lashes as well.

The formulation: is unscentend and works perfectly with my contact-weearing eyes. It's smudgeproof on me, although I hardly have that kind of issue with any mascara.

The cons: well it does bring length but it doesn't bring any volume, so if you're looking for that, look somewhere else. Also once it dries, adding a second coat doesn't look very good.

Purchase or not purchase? You know me, I'm all about the volume and I love my YSL Faux-Cils, but this is definitely something I'd consider for a more natural look, particularly as it makes the lash roots look so dense.

October 21, 2010

Cleansing routine, and 2 products reviews.

I rencently mentioned my using of Mac Face&Body foundation and that, this being a waterproof foundation, I needed oil to remove it.

So I thought it would be the perfect occasion to explain which cleansing routine I like when I have this kind of makeup on, and introduce you to the products I use.
First of all, the cleansing oil. I use Shu Uemura balancing cleansing oil, which is in the pink bottle and is meant for combination skin as it has balancing properties.
You have probably seen this a million times, but I can't get this product in my country and got this as a birthday gift last Summer from a friend who's lucky enough to have a Shu freestanding store in her area!
Basically, you use a couple of pumps of oil on your dry face, you massage it gently then you add a few drops of water and massage again so the oil gets a bit milky. You can use this on your eyes as well and remove your (waterproof) mascara with it, at least if you're not afraid of looking like a panda for a few minutes.

Then, I remove everything with a wet muslin cloth. I have been intrigued by these for a while, as I know they are part of the famous Liz Earle skincare routine. Basically, muslin is a fabric that is a bit stiff, so it slightly exfoliates your skin when you're using it. It's very gentle, though, I didn't experience any redness.
 

I got my muslin cloths from Natroma, which is a UK based online store. I picked the organic ones, and I found that at £1.75 each (non-organic are £1.50), they were reasonably priced compared to other online stores I had seen. So I ordered 6 (they are sold by three). I got my package very quickly and had a positive customer experience so I'd recommend them if you need this kind of product.
The cloths have a slight earthy smell but nothing disturbing. They're washable in the washing machine but you can't use fabric softener as that would ruin the purpose.

I can tell you that this combination of products does remove everything and leaves the skin plump and clean. I still use another cleanser under the shower to make sure I get rid of all the oil (I mostly use Bioderma foam) and because I like to double cleanse to feel fresh, but it's not really necessary.

Any of you a fan of oil cleansers and/or muslin cloths? Or have you found anything even better to remove waterproof makeup?

October 19, 2010

Foundation Review #22: Mac Face & Body





No, I didn't buy this one. One of my lovely makeupaddict friends sent me a very generous sample of this, so I can now review it for you all dear readers. The sample is in the color C1, which matches me perfectly.
I was very curious about this one, I must say, as I have heard the best and the worst about it, as the ladies on makeupalley often criticize it and prefer the Makeup For Ever Face & Body (which I haven't tried).

First thing I have to say: this foundation is an alien, I've never seen anything like that. It's a water based foundation that is very liquidy and runny when you pour it from the bottle, but once you start blending it on the skin, it does set and dries within a couple of seconds. So you have to work quickly and as often, I find my fingers are the best tool to apply.
Now once it's on, you just let it set for a minute, you look at yourself in the miror, and you say WOW. This gives a fantastic finish, superior to a tinted moisturizer but definitely very sheer and letting your skin show through.

I have been using it with concealer (MUFE Full Cover to hide some redness on the cheeks), no powder, and it lasts all day. Then, to remove it properly, you'll need to use an oil based remover, I use my Shiseido cleanser (oh, another product I need to review). I absolutely adore the way this looks on my skin, I would definitely call it a lighter version of my beloved Nars Sheer Glow, and it's the best sheer foundation I've ever used (I usually don't like very sheer foundations).
So, in a nutshell:

PROS:

  • Huge bottle for a reasonable price: 120ml for $32, that's 4 times the volume of an average foundation for about the same price!
  • Long-lasting, at least on me.
  • Water based, oil-free.
  • Sheer coverage that lets skin show through but beautiful satin finish.
  • Sets quickly, no need to wait.
  • Doesn't look greasy, no need to powder.
  • Can be used on the body, which means a darker shade can be used on your legs to fake a tan in the summer, for example.
  • No SPF in it, is reported to photograph beautifully
CONS:
  • Can be a bit difficult to work with if you're not going fast enough.
  • I've heard the formulation separates quickly, which would make the use of the whole big bottle impossible - but I have no evidence of that.
  • In France, you can't get it at counters, you have to go to free standing store, so it's not widely available.
  • The coloring system is different from the one used with other Mac foundations
  • May require extra concealing if you have uneven skintone

VERDICT:
If you're looking for sheer coverage (if you want freckles to show through foundation, for example, which I think is lovely) and good value for money, this is the perfect foundation for you. I definitely recommend it, I am going to use up my sample and might get a full bottle next Summer!

Oh, and I'm wearing it on this (not very good, apologies) picture:

October 18, 2010

Review: Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré





This product got hyped on the beauty web community a few months ago, and I guess Pixiwoo is to blame for that - or rather, to thank.
So I bought this in France during the Summer sales and I paid less than 10€ for the 30ml tube, which I think is a good deal. If you don't know where to get it near you, you can order it online from CocoBeau, which provide fantastic customer service.


So, what's this Lait-Crème? It's marketed as a miracle 24 hours treatment that hydrates and soothes the skin. It contains water, shea butter, beeswax, aloe vera and soy protein, and a paraben-free preservative complex. It's also cruelty-free.
It's a white formulation that looks very rich but does penetrate the skin very quickly. It works fantastically under makeup because it really primes the skin, leaving it smooth and soft, and it doesn't make you get oily after a few hours like some moisturizers do. 


I haven't used it in extreme conditions yet, since Winter hasn't started, so I can't really tell how well it works on dry patches or protects again cold wind and sub-zero temperatures. But my skin has been feeling a bit tight these past 2 weeks, probably because of the central heating being turned on, and this has helped. I can use it either at night with my beloved Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair underneath, or during the day on its own with makeup on top. 


Although I haven't tried that, you can apparently massage this onto your skin and remove with warm water to remove your makeup. That means that, when you're traveling for a few days, you can totally take this product only and use it as a cleanser and moisturizer/primer.


So, all in all, a very good product for a very good price, I definitely recommend it!

October 16, 2010

Lemmings




It took me a while to get into Nars products. I guess at first I wasn't ready to appreciate their colors, and then the first purchases I made left me disappointed.
But I did give Nars another try over a year ago and I am so happy I did! Especially as Nars Sheer Glow is my holy grail foundation, and as Nars Deep Throat is one of my favorite blushes.

I did get some products from the Fall collection and I really enjoy them. And now Nars announces some more gorgeousness for the Holidays, I don't think I'll be able to resist! Let me introduce:



ETRUSQUE SINGLE EYESHADOW, $23 - An antique gold hue reminiscent of Etruscan cast bronze art 


 MELUSINE DUO EYESHADOW, $32 - An ultra-modern union of rich purple orchid and silver-spun lilac
 

SEX APPEAL BLUSH, $26 - A soft peach blush, perfect for foolproof contouring

Yes, another peach blush, what can I say? It's my thing, let it go.

There are more pretty things in this collection, including OKINAWA TRIO EYESHADOW, $45  described as  The first trio eyeshadow for the brand is a striking triad of black onyx, silver and cobalt blue, as well as lip products and nail polishes.
But I'm going to try and be brave, and resist getting everyting!

Anything you fancy in this collection? Or in the other Holidays collections?
 

October 15, 2010

Review: Le Blanc de Chanel



After having read a lot of good things about this product and having gone through an awful day at work, I recently indulged into some retail therapy and got the famous Blanc de Chanel.


What it is: a "sheer illumating base", in Chanel's own words. You can apply it directly in your face to use it as a primer, mix it with your foundation to make it paler or more illuminating, or you can pat it on top of foundation to use it as a highlighter. It's really a multi-purpose product.


The Pro's:

  • A very nice glass bottle, which is typical of all Chanel liquid makeup products, that comes with a spatula so you can take the right amount. Maybe a pump would have been easier to use but I tend to think that if they didn't put one, there must be a reason - and the product is a bit thicker than a liquid foundation.
  • A delicious rose smell, I think it's the same one there was in the Hydramax moisturizer I used to use quite a few years ago.
  • It applies beautifully and it keeps its promises: it makes your foundation last all day and gives a perfect glow to the face. I actually found it more natural than Mac Strobe Cream, which can be too shimmery and even look a bit greasy. Le Blanc was just perfect.
The Con's:
  • It's Chanel, so it's pricy, I paid 33€ for it.
  • The ingredients list, here we go:

Ingredients: aqua, ethylhexyl palmitate, talc, neopentyl glycol diethylhexanoate, cyclopentasiloxane, silica, caprylic/capric triglyceride, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel extract) water, propylene glycol, glycerin, PEG-30 dipolyhydroxystearate, HDI/trimethylol hexyllactone crosspolymer, aluminium hydroxide, butylene glycol, alcohol, phenoxyethanol, tribehenin, silica dimethyl silyate, methylparaben, disteardimonium hectorite, propylparaben, fragrance, BHT, laminaria digitata extract, ascorbyl palmitate, glyceryl stearate, disodium stearoyl glutamate, citric acid, sodium hyaluronate, glycyrrhiza glabra (licorice) root extract, butylparaben, ethylparaben, denatonium benzoate, CI 77891 (titanium dioxide), mica.
So here ends my love story with this product, as I had an allergic reaction to it the few times I wore it. There are actually several things in there that can cause allergies: talc, silica, witch hazel extract, mica... Plus, if you're sensitive to alcohol or fragrances, this might not work for you either.
It made my skin very itchy and my forehead broke out, and these are the 2 typical reactions I experience if I am allergic to a beauty product.


Is it worth buying?
Definitely, if you're not allergy prone or sensitive to one of the ingredients. Maybe try to get a sample and use it for a few days before buying, in order to check if you skin doesn't disagree, since it's an expensive item. I'm pretty sad I can't keep on using it.

October 13, 2010

Burning down the makeup stash!

No, no, don't worry, I haven't decided on throwing all my makeup away! Even though I did some serious clean-up last week-end and put some stuff for sale.
But it really got me into thinking about the things I really really like in my stash. Not the ones I keep because I find them pretty or because they remind me of some nice occasion. I mean, the ones I do always come back to and would immediately buy again if my stash were to burn down and I had to start it all over again. 
Let's pretend we have to quickly rebuild an emergency beauty bag with only holy grails, shall we?
Here's what I'd definitely buy:


Nars Sheer Glow foundation.
Heaven forbid I ever have to live with only one foundation (I'd like to be able to pick at least another one!) but if I really had to, this would be the one. What can I say, it's the only one I have in 3 shades so I can enjoy it all year long, if that doesn't prove that I love it...


Bobbi Brown creamy concealer.
Because it's the only one that perfectly covers my undereye circles, still looks natural and has a perfect consistency for me.
Makeup For Ever Full Cover would be a close second but it's a bit thick for the undereye area.


Mac MSFN powder.
Perfect as a setting powder, perfect used on itself like mineral foundation.


Illamasqua blushes.
Lover and Unrequited would be the 2 first blushes I'd get! I can wear them alone, I can layer them, they're just perfect.


Nars Exhibit A and Zen blushes.
Exhibit A is unique and gorgeous, Zen is my perfect contouring color, so these are the 2 first Nars blushers I'd pick.


My Bobbi Brown Nectar Shimmerbrick
Because all the blushes I picked are matte, and sometimes I like a bit of shimmer on my cheeks :)


Cargo Blue Ray matte bronzer.
I have actually hit pan on this one. I have other bronzers that I like but if I had to keep one only, I'd have to get this one.




Illamasqua brow cake and Essence brow gel.



Most natural combination ever to fill in my brows.


Nars smudgeproof eyeshadow base.
Works great under any kind of eyeshadow and totally lives up to the expectations.


Shiseido hydropowder in 01, Mac Rubenesque and Coral Crepe paintpot.
These are really staples, because they're no-brainers. I can use them for any kind of quick look with a darker shadow in the crease. They're great bases for colors.


Eyeshadows: Mac, hands down.
I have a lot of eyeshadows. Cross that, I have hundreds actually. But the ones I'd rebuy would be pretty much these :


My Mac neutrals. My Tempting, my Woodwinked, my Satin Taupe, my Mulch, my Cranberry. These do get a lot of love.
Not having my UD Naked palette would probably break my heart, so this one would be next on my list.


My YSL Faux-Cils mascara, and my Bobbi Brown gel liner.
Because they're the owners of all the drama my eyes can use :-)
A few lipsticks, mostly Mac.
I think the first ones I'd get would be Dubonnet, Girl About Town, O, Morange, Charismatic and CB96. 
Let's pretend my beloved Guerlain KissKiss Baby in Rosewood Nude hasn't been discontinued, I'd get that one too for a my lips but better look.


So... 23 products and a Mac pro palette. Enough to fill in a big makeup bag and make myself ready for the day.
What would you run and buy again if you were left sans makeup all of a sudden?

October 12, 2010

The Flawless Face


Yesterday, my good friend and makeup artist Jessica shared a link to the portpholio of a graphic designer.
The pictures in the portfolio were all on faces and beauty, and you could roll over them to see what they looked like before digital magic was performed.

Well I was kind of shocked when I saw the difference. Of course, I know Photoshop rules these days - hey, I use it myself at work. And I also enjoy looking at pretty editorial pictures even though I know they were digitally treated.
But Jessica had a point: if the eyeliner or blush are digitally corrected, then the makeup artist can hardly claim this look to be their work.
Using special effects and getting rid of flaws is one thing, but touching up the makeup is another. It reminded me of some experience I had a long time ago at a makeup counter. Back then Lancôme had just launched their famous Juicy Tubes. (Yes, I'm that old, let it go). I asked the SA for the pretty cherry color that the model was wearing on the promo picture.
"That color doesn't exist", she told me.
"But it's on the promo picture!" I protested.
"Well, she said, they mix different products for her makeup, and then touch up the pictures. So that exact color doesn't exist in the range".

As far as I am concerned, they can touch up flaws as much as they want, I don't care, I like to look at the pretty pictures.
But alterate the product the picture is selling is a big no-no. Don't touch up the lipstick color, or don't make the foundation look luminous when it's matte. (Oh and before someone reminds me I didn't touch this subject: don't add falsies to the model in mascara ads. They're so obvious that they're ridiculous on top of misleading). 

Do not change the product. OK? OK.

October 11, 2010

FOTD from the past week

Definitely digging the Fall looks right now!

This one was made using the UD Book of Shadow 2, I like the dark corners and highlighted lid center.




Nails of the day: Essie Sew Psyched. I thought I would hate that color, I actually like it a lot!


A real Fall look with Mac eyeshadows, shamelessly stolen from the lovely Jellyminx.


New week, new look with the UD Naked palette (and Mac Lap of Luxury lipgloss) and a new hair color that is more Fall appropriate! (The difference isn't huge on the pic but I actually went from a level 7 to a level 5 so it's quite darker in real life).


By the way, I'm now wearing Nars Sheer Glow in Santa Fe, and it's a perfect match, which I'm very surprised of since it's a medium shade and not a fair one.


As you can see, I'm aboslutely in love with my purple faux-leather jacket!

What are you loving and wearing right now?

October 10, 2010

Blogsale time!

I went through my stash and decided to sell a few things that deserve more love than I can give them.

You can access the blogsale here. There's some Burberry, Chanel, Guerlain, Lancôme, Illamasqua, Mac and some drugstore items.

Happy shopping!

October 8, 2010

My brushroll



I got a brushroll a while ago, and I've travelled with it a couple of times already. I now realize I never told you about it.

I bought it on Etsy from the lovely Sakura0325, whom I had met on Makeupalley. She did a lovely job for a reasonable price and what I like a lot is the fact that she uses a light plastic on the inside of the roll, so it's washable and the fabric won't get stained by dirty brushes.



I got to chose how many slots I wanted and for what kind of brushes, and I definitely can fit about a dozen in there!
Definitely visit her Etsy shop and contact her if you're on the hunt for a brushroll, as she can customize things for you.

Pictures property of Sakura0325.

October 7, 2010

Foundation Review #21: Mac Pro Longwear



I haven't reviewed a foundation in a long while, (well, a long while for me at least) and what would be a best occasion to get back on track than the launch of a new Mac Foundation? (Courtesy of a friend who gave it to me as a gift -thanks-)

What Mac says about Pro Longwear:
In the world of Pro Longwear, Foundation and Concealer carry the show with creamy, medium buildable coverage right through to a flawless, natural finish. Marathon makeup to go, made from micronized pigments to promote the smoothest application and colour purity.
How I would describe it:
Pro Longwear is an aqua based, oil free foundation - which doesn't mean it's silicone free nonetheless. I would describe the consistency as a more liquidy version of Studio Sculpt, hence easier to spread although still slightly gel-like and thick, which doesn't make it the easiest to work with.
I would definitely not describe the coverage as medium, on me it goes on quite sheer and the slight redness on my cheeks definitely shows through one layer of this foundation.
The product sets quickly, so you have to apply fast and area by area, and it sets quite matte.

The Pros:
  • comes in a bottle with a pump, which is hygienic
  • SPF 10, which isn't enough but is better than nothing
  • oil-free and aqua based, which means it's perfect for you if you have oily skin
  • Sheer buildable coverage, which is nice if you want something long lasting but don't need a lot of coverage, as most products in this category are high coverage
  • High pigment concentration is obvious
The Cons:
  • not the easiest to apply in my opinion, you will need a primer underneath to help it go smoothly
  • thick consistency and matte setting, if you have fry skin, avoid at all costs or you will look flakey and possibly cakey
  • sheer coverage... you will need concealer! or you'll need several layers of product, which takes time and work
  • has been reported to oxidize, but I haven't noticed anything - I generally don't have this issue, though
How I make this work for me:
Mixed with an illuminating fluid or primer as it also breaks the matte finish a bit. I apply with fingers so I can work quickly.

How does it compare to Clarins Everlasting?
You know I've been using this one for several months, so I definitely compared both, using them alternatively on my longest days.
I would say that the Clarins is definitely easier to apply since it's more creamy, and it also gives medium to full coverage - but it does look less natural of course and feels more siliconey. The finish is also more satiny.
In terms of longevity, if I don't use a primer underneath (which I usually don't), I find Clarins performs better after the 7-8 hours mark, while Pro Longwear will start disappearing around my nose area.
Clarins Everlasting does contain alcohol, which can be drying, while Pro Longwear doesn't.

Who should get what?
If you don't need much coverage and are oily, get Pro Longwear, definitely, and use on top of an oil control primer.
However if you want a higher coverage without having to build up, you might prefer Clarins Everlasting but you'd have to get along with the alcohol in it, and use powder if you want a totally matte finish.
If you have dry skin, though, avoid Pro Longwear as it wouldn't look the best on your skin.

October 6, 2010

Tali's TAG!

The lovely Tali at The Gloss Goss tagged her readers to do this one, and I thought it was fun!

Would You Rather..

Never use mascara again or bronzer again?
I love both but I guess I'd have to give up bronzer as wearing a full face of makeup without mascara isn't really an option!

Only be able to buy high end make-up or drugstore make-up again?
High-End, definitely, all my HG's are high-end!

Be In Love or Be Loved?
Be loved!

Go out with chipped nail varnish or unshaven legs?
Hum, depends of the circumstances... I have to confess that in Winter time I can be lazy with the shaving work sometimes, but if I had to make a definite choice, I'd pick chipped nails I guess.

Go out with messy hair or no make-up?
I feel very bad when my hair looks bad, but as long as it's clean, I can always tie it up if it's messy. So even though I have no problem going out without makeup on, on a daily basis it's probably the hair that wins.

Leave the house with an orange tan or peroxide-gone-wrong ginger hair?
I think the orange tan could be fought against with some scrub and lemon juice while the peroxide gone wrong would damage my hair and I'd have to wait before dying it a dark color... So, orange tan!

It were Winter forever or Summer forever?
Summer! I hate Winter with a passion, it drains out my energy and depresses me, and I hate being cold!

Leave the house with dried toothpaste drool or crusty yellow sleep eyes?
I guess the toothpaste is a sign I have good hygiene habits so I'd pick that/

Give up all MAC or Illamasqua products?
Now this is a really, really difficult question. I absolutely love Illamasqua and the whole universe of this range. Their lipglosses are fantastic, they have my HG brow cake, I love their liquid metals... But I am an eyeshadow lover, and while Mac has most of my favorite ones, Illamasqua's eyeshadows aren't the best, so I'd have to pick Mac. I can't live without Vex or Tempting or Woodwinked!

Feel free to do this tag too, on your blog or in the comments!

October 4, 2010

Review: Clarins Instant Blush Magic Color

When I first saw this on beauty blogs a couple of weeks ago, I thought it was cute and would be lovely to have.
When I finally got to see it in real life at the counter, I thought it was a weird product: the color looked bubble gum pink in the jar, but transparent when I swatched. But after a few seconds the color got a bit darker on my skin to become a pretty pink flush. So even though it's completely gimmicky, I thought it was fun and I impulse bought it!

This Instant Blush is actually a limited edition, and it exists only in this pink color. It has the consistency of lipgloss upon application even though it looks very compact in the jar. And actually, you can totally use this on the lips too.

The product is meant to be suitable for any complexion since it "transforms" on your skin but I found that on me, it was quite a light pink and I'm not sure how that would work on darker skintones.

I like that the finish is slightly dewy, however I find it to be a bit sticky. You also have to blend it with your fingers very quickly as it sets within a few seconds.
I have been using it mainly as a base for my light pink blushes (like Chanel JC Pink Explosion or Illamasqua Unrequited) but I think that in the Winter it will be a lovely color on its own.

An overall fun product for a reasonable price (around 20€), not a must have but it would make a lovely gift for a teenager or for pink lovers of all ages.

October 3, 2010

Faces of the past week

I must say I haven't been at the top of my game during this past week, Fall makes me a bit uninspired, particularly outfit-wise, and when you lose 20 min deciding on what to wear and changing twice, you don't have much time left for makeup.
Plus, it's now too dark to take pictures when I leave the house, so I have to do with iPhone pics.

First look was done with the good old Mac Shadowy Lady quad from the Cult of Cherry collection. This was issued in the Fall of 2008, but I only got it from allcosmeticswholesale.com pretty recently, since I had always regretted not having bought it back then.
You don't see it very well but I used a pop of Blue Flame in the inner crease for a change.
Lipstick is Mac Aristocatic from the Fabulous Feline collection, I love that it's purple but totally wearable.



Speaking of blue, I wore OPI Ski Teal we Drop from the Swiss collection, this week, and I'm really loving it! It's what I wanted Suzy Says Feng Shui to be, and it's super glossy without a top coat.


This is a quick look I did on Saturday to go shopping. I was actually trying on a new face primer, which I'll be telling you more about in a few days :-) On the eyes I'm wearing Mac Zinc Zone Greasepaint blended, with Vex and Carbon eyeshadows. Lipgloss is Mac Lap of Luxury from the Fabulous Felines collection.




I realize that's a lot of Mac I wore this past week! I'll try to use UD and Nars more in the coming week, I think.
What looks have you been doing lately?