Hello beauty lovers!
After taking a sabbatical from the blog, I’m happy to say I am back and feeling much better. For those of you who don’t know, I’m pregnant! And let me just say that I would never wish the first trimester on anyone. It’s brutal, but obviously worth it :) If you’d like to check in on me and baby, check us out on my pregnancy blog HERE.
Now on to more pressing beauty news. Lips are a huge trend that aren’t going away anytime soon. What’s great about wearing a bold or bright lip is that it allows you to be somewhat “lazy” with the rest of your makeup: just throw on some winged liner and mascara and you’re done, right?!
In honor of the lip trend, I wanted to share some of my favorite lip must-haves from MAC Cosmetics. I have been on/off with this amazing brand for the last 11 years so not only do I know the product like the back of my hand, but I obviously love and recommend it too. Before we begin I do want to tell you guys that lipstick is THE hardest thing to purchase at a makeup store. You absolutely must try it on before you purchase to see how the color will pay off on your lips. Swatching it on your hand does not help, because most people have a different skin tone in their lips than their hand. Here we go…
UP THE AMP LIPSTICK & FASHION BOOST LINER
Up the Amp is a creamy red-violet lipstick that looks good on most golden/olive skin tones. The beauty of Up the Amp is that it looks different on everyone! I have loved this color for about 9 years, and I finally found its perfect pair in Fashion Boost liner, which is a magenta-toned purple color. The liner is a long-wearing formula so it helps Up The Amp stay on for up to 6 hours. IF you have darker skin and don’t fall in love with Up the Amp, try it’s deeper, frostier sister in Violetta (MAC store-only).
SIN LIPSTICK & CYBER WORLD LINER
I just recently began my relationship with Sin lipstick. Long-loved by celebrities like Rihanna, Sin is a deliciously deep dark matte burgundy red. So rich! I like pairing it with Cyber World liner to pull out the blackish-purple undertones in the lipstick. Ugh, this combination is gorgeous on everyone, from fair all the way to deep dark.
REBEL LIPSTICK & NIGHTINGALE LINER
Rebel is a mid-tonal cream plum with a berry undertone. There are two things I love about this lipstick other than the amazing color: it’s a Satin finish, meaning it’s a semi-matte that gives you all the benefits of a long-wearing matte without the dry feeling. The second is the fact that there is something about this color that actually stains the lips, thus making it last longer and leaving a nice stain behind. Nightingale lip liner is a brand new lip liner, and the ONLY one in the MAC lineup that matches Rebel perfectly. Love this combo on everyone!
VICTORIANA LIPSTICK & CHERRY LINER
Victoriana is a limited edition, matte red lipstick from the MAC Toledo collection. It makes me sad that this is a limited item because it is the BEST red lipstick I have every seen from MAC. The most popular red, Ruby Woo, actually looks pink compared the to the true, vibrant, matte red that is Victoriana. I can’t get enough of the beautiful depth and color of this lipstick. And pairing it with Cherry liner just makes it disrespectfully perfect.
Hi Beauty lovers! Halloween is fast approaching so I wanted to give you some ideas from Halloweens past in case you were looking for a last minute costume. Which one of these do you want to try most?
Dio de Los Muertos
Hello Beauty Lovers,
Let me tell you about my latest beauty obsession: KOREAN BEAUTY BRANDS! Countries like South Korea and Japan have always been ahead of the beauty regimen curve. Beauty balms, or BB creams, were first created in the Asian market and had been available for a decade before they were on anyone’s radar in North America and Europe. Name any skincare trend, its roots are most likely Asian: skin lightening creams, snail mucus serums, fermented skincare, BB and CC creams etc.
I have recently discovered the brightly-lit cosmetic stores hidden in the nearby neighborhood of Koreatown. These little gems are packed to the brim with adorably packaged beauty products, most of them affordable, that actually…WORK. Who knew? Much like my husband’s Korean car (Kia Optima Turbo), these beauty finds are high quality and highly affordable. After a few trips to the Korea Town beauty stores, I branched out and found a fantastic store in the heart of Beverly Hills that sells Korean products exclusively. I’ve been frequenting this store quite a bit since it’s just up the street from one of my many jobs. Another plus: Korean skincare strays from harsh chemicals and instead uses natural ingredients to treat skin.
I still consider myself a beginner in the Korean beauty world, but I wanted to share my favorites with you thus far.
TONY MOLY COSMETICS
Tony Moly‘s line has hands-down the most precious packaging I’ve ever seen. What makes it even better is that unlike your Hello Kitty chapstick, this stuff actually works. Here’s the Pandas Dream So Cool Eye Stick, swoon!
I’m not sure why this Korean brand has a seemingly French name, but I’m not going to question it. Etude House is having a few Grand Opening specials on their US website, check them out HERE for a good deal! They have a variety of mineral BB creams made for different skin types. It’s good to mention here that Korean BB creams are thicker and cover a LOT better then the thin, watery U.S. ones. And I love the high SPFs!
I am obsessed with the IPKN (pronounced ip-kin) BB cream in Moist and Firm. It makes my skin look positively glowy. I powder my T-zone to avoid unnecessary shine and it’s perfect. Here’s something completely innovative: IPKN has come up with a new way of applying makeup with a patented vibrating puff called The Artist Wave Auto Makeup ($49). The anti-bacterial puff has a soft touch and glides comfortably onto your face for a smooth application and airbrushed look. I tried it in-store and it’s pretty cool and easy to use! It’s meant to use with BB creams but you can also apply your moisturizer or lightweight foundation with it. There are replacement puffs available.
DEAGE BY CHARMZONE
I was given a sample of the Deage Red-Addition Nutrient Cream in K-town and I adore how rich and decadent this product is. It smells amazing and soaks right into your skin. I wake up in the morning and can still feel the softness in my skin. I’m a tosser-and-a-turner so that’s saying a lot!
The sheet masks from 3W Clinic are gentle and feel great. I was given the Fresh Aloe ones by a client of mine and I use them once a week. You get a packet of 10 for about $12 – can’t beat it! After I wear the papery mask for about 20 minutes, I remove it and massage the rest of the liquid into my skin. Your face will be super soft for days.
WHERE TO BUY:
If you’re in L.A. you can hit up Yelp and find a beauty supply store in Koreatown. For everywhere else, online is your best bet at the links I’ve provided above. Will you be trying any one of these Korean beauty products? Which one are you most stoked about?
Jeunesse is an up and coming line of skincare that I first became familiar with in the spring of 2014. Always on the hunt for anti-aging skin care, I was excited to hear about this new line. Jeunesse has a six products in their skincare line, along with nutrition supplements. Today I’ll be focusing on the Luminesce Cellular Rejuvenating Serum.
What Are the Benefits?
It evens out discolored and blotchy skin, hydrates the skin and minimizes the appearance of fine lines as well as deep wrinkles. But the best part? It does all this by replenishing your skin’s natural stores of growth factors and proteins that can become depleted with age. These growth factors and proteins are what keep your skin youthful and smooth (like collagen) and the older we get, the less our skin makes. Jeunesse is basically Gatorade for your skin, feeding your skin so it will create cell turnover and renew itself.
Who Should Use It?
My mother in-law and sister in-law both use this serum and I have seen a major change in their skin over the past couple of months. I tried it myself, and while I really enjoyed the feel of the serum, the fine lines that are slowly creeping in around my eyes are not deep enough to see a visual difference. Based on what I’ve seen and experienced myself, I would highly recommend the Jeunesse line to women over 40.
What Are the Active Ingredients?
Adipose Derived Adult Stem Cell: There are no actual stem cells in the serum. A natural liquid media is conditioned by the human adult stem cells. This conditioned media now full of over 200 growth factors is completely separated and this is what is used in LUMINESCE Cellular rejuvenation serum.
Purified Water: helps boost skin’s moisture levels.
Lysate Extract: a cell protein that gently coaxes your skin’s own protein levels
How Do I Use It?
Apply a small amount to your fingertips and massage it evenly in an upward circular motion to the face and neck. It absorbs quickly into the skin. At night, use it under a layer of your favorite moisturizer. The serum is extremely light-weight and will need a moisturizer on top to lock it in. In the morning, you can also use it under your sunscreen (always protect your skin with a high SPF) or under a BB cream/foundation.
When Will I Start To See Results?
Anywhere from four weeks to three months of continued use.
Where Do I Purchase?
Jeunesse can be purchased via online distributors. You can also sign up to become a distributor yourself. Please click this link to purchase HERE and check out the entire line of Jeunesse products.
Happy September friends! The summer flew by faster than a Kardashian divorce, and I have been working on this particular post for quite a while. Have you ever started a project then gotten interrupted or distracted EVERY time you tried to work on it? That’s totally what happened here. I’m just glad it’s finally ready for you to read.
No matter the season, nude and natural lip tones will always be in style. I’m talking about your go-to, everyday lipsticks. In the last two years, lips have been a huge trend and lipsticks have been hogging all the attention, leaving glosses to take a back seat. I have no problem with this. Need a little shine? Top your matte lipstick with a creamy, sheer lipstick. Say goodbye to the days of your hair getting stuck to your lip gloss and the fear of windy days.
I’m going to be using mostly MAC lipsticks as examples since they have a wide variety and are available in almost every department store and mall across the country. Let’s get started…
FAIR SKIN TONE
MAC Creme Cup or Honeylove
For fair skin tones, I suggest picking natural tones over ones that directly match your skin, because you will end up with “ghost lips.” Natural lipsticks that have a pink undertone will be most flattering for light skin. Creme Cup is a Cream Sheen, meaning it’s sheer and moisturizing. Honeylove is another beautiful pink-undertoned neutral in a matte texture option.
MAC Cherish or Too Faced Melted Nude
For my auburn beauties and strawberry blondes, the same concept that we used for fair skin works here as well: Pick pinky-brown lipsticks that will pull the natural red of your hair and give you a subtle pout. MAC Cherish is a Satin lipstick, meaning it’s a semi-matte and will give you lots of opacity. Pick Too Faced Melted Nude lipstick for a creamier formula of the same color.
MEDIUM SKIN TONE
Tom Ford in Sable Smoke and MAC Kinda Sexy
Medium skin-toned ladies almost always have a golden or yellow undertone, so pick lipsticks with a cooler undertone. Less pink, more beige. Tom Ford lipstick in Sable Smoke is a beautiful choice and for a matte version try MAC Kinda Sexy lipstick, pictured below. (My all time fave, I wear this several times a week!)
MEDIUM-DARK SKIN TONE
MAC Siss, Velvet Teddy and Half & Half
Ladies with medium-dark skin are incredibly caramel and have lots of gold in their skin. Unlike lighter skin tones, it’s important to find lipsticks that match the cool shades in their skin and be completely beige or brown in tone. Siss, Velvet Teddy and Half and Half are all pretty yellow-toned browns that would look beautiful on these golden girls.
GOLDEN-DARK SKIN TONE
Taupe, Tabla or Film Noir
Deep dark skin can have either a golden or burgundy undertone to it. For my deep dark golden girls, MAC’s Taupe lipstick is matte and provides even coverage for those with uneven lip tones (some women may have a lighter top lip and darker bottom lip, or dark rim around both). Tabla is a beautiful, creamy, coffee-brown that will give a more natural look, and Film Noir is a dark chocolate shade for those looking for more color.
BURGUNDY-DARK SKIN TONE
Taupe, Tabla or Paramount
For deeper skin with burgundy undertones, I still recommend Taupe and Tabla, and add Paramount, a deep, dark reddish-brown to the mix. These will all give smooth opaque coverage to balance out lip tone and enhance your natural beauty.
It’s wedding-recap time! This past June, I had the opportunity to do the makeup for seven bridesmaids and the bride herself, Mrs. Melanie Butters. Because it was such a large party, I called in my most trusted makeup artist pal to help me beautify these babes, Allyson Stagg of The Las Vegas Style Sirens.
Look at that stunning ring!
Here I am putting the finishing touches on the bride-to-be
Melanie and her girls got ready at her twin sister Nikki’s house, which had great natural lighting and lots of room for our massive kits.
Melanie wore a cathedral-style veil which made taking photos even more fun and creative.
My favorite part of weddings are always the gaggle of flowers girls! So cute.
I grew up going to Armenian Orthodox churches, which are identical to the Greek ones. So much architecture and beauty. With the bride’s Greek heritage, I’m sure St. Nicholas church felt right at home.
A sweet moment between Melanie and Andrew before the big party started.
Let’s face it. This is hands-down the best bridal party photo ever taken. These girls were so much fun to get ready in the morning and as you can see their carried on with their mischief right through the day!
Congratulations to the bride and groom! I look forward to beautifying these ladies next year when Nikki, Melanie’s twin sister gets married in November 2015!
Photography: Michael Anthony Photography