Hello my blog-reading beauties! With it being wedding season and all, I recently purchased some new things for my kit (and let’s face it, for myself) and wanted to share my finds with you.
I normally do video hauls, but to be honest, they haven’t been getting many views and since I have way more blog readers than Youtube viewers (3,000-6,000 of you visit my site a month, wow!) I thought blogging about my finds would make more sense.
Because of low viewership, I won’t be doing any more makeup hauls on my Youtube channel. It just takes SO much time and effort to create a concept, film a tutorial, then edit it, so if no one’s going to watch them, it’s not worth it. I’ll still be doing makeup tutorial videos, and if there is a look you would like to see, please let me know in the comments below, I aim to please!
Ok, back to the fun stuff:
Ben Nye’s Banana Luxury Powder has been around for years and is a favorite among television and movie makeup artists. At my friend Ashleigh’s urging, I bought it at Naimie’s last week. Micro-milled for a silky texture, Luxury Powders are translucent with just a hint of color and have a superior matte finish. It feels velvety and gives the skin a soft-focus finish. This particular shade is wonderful for people with olive undertones (Asian and Latino decent) and those with dark to deep-dark skin (African descent, etc). I recommend dusting a small amount under the eyes and down the bridge of the nose with a fiber optic brush. The fiber optic brush allows you to pick up a small amount of the powder, which is all you need. Do NOT pack this stuff on if you plan on taking pictures, because it will flash back and make you look white. A light hand and fiber optic brush are your best bet! And at $9 for 1.5 ounces, it’s a steal.
This chocolate-scented, shimmer-free, matte bronzer is perfect for contouring and creating an all-over deep tan using real antioxidant-rich cocoa powder. To quote Too Faced’s creator, Jared Blandino, “It’s all the tan without the twinkle!” EVERY client I have used this bronzer on has sighed loudly over the chocolatey scent. The color payoff is amazing too. AND cruelty-free. Thank you, I’ll take 10 more.
Illamasqua’s top seller and rightfully so. Having oily skin, I was concerned that this HD foundation would go greasy on me, as Makeup For Ever’s HD foundation sometimes does, but guess what: it’s gave me a natural finish (not dewy, not matte) with medium coverage and lasts all day. It’s truly suitable for all skin types! Its hydrating formula primes, controls shine, hydrates, and smooths your skin while providing natural, buildable coverage. The only downside? The hefty $42 price tag. But some things are worth the money, and finding the perfect cruelty-free foundation that you can buy over and over again is priceless.
I’m a huge fan of the original Purity cleanser by Philosophy. It’s creamy texture doesn’t lather up, but does do a good job of gently removing my makeup without drying my skin out. When I saw that Philosophy came out with a foaming gel version of it, my eyes lit up. Instead of replenishing my usual Purity cleanser, I went for the re-up. This stuff is EVEN BETTER than the original. The gel foams up and the bubbles leave your skin feeling squeaky-clean. Sometimes with the regular Purity, I still have to use makeup remover to get the remainder of my mascara and black liner. Not with the foaming gel, baby. I got out of the shower and saw that my face was completely clean and ready for bed.
My recommendation: if you have sensitive or dry skin, stick to the regular Purity. The cream texture will feed your skin and is a lot more mild. If you are normal-to-oily, time for you to try the Purity Foaming Gel.
The beauty world has been abuzz about NYX’s moisturizing matte lip creams, so I finally got my hands on some at Ulta. This is a soft coral-pink color that looks flattering on everyone. It’s beautiful on its own, or topped off with a gloss. Cruelty-free and fabulous! I especially love this for my older clients- it has the ability to blur the fine lines you sometimes find on your lips.
You guys know I have an excessive amount of nail polish (about 100 bottles). This is one of the only polishes that I actually run out of and have to purchase over and over again. It’s a bright, blue-based pink with a neon matte finish (I usually put a shiny top coat over it) It’s PERFECT for all skin tones and has the magical power to make your hands and feet look tan and sexy. PROOF: a grown man walked into the MAC store I was freelancing at last week and told me I had “pretty feet.” No one has ever told me that before. And I’m willing to bet it’s all thanks to this gorgeous neon polish.
Hi beauties! Contouring the face has made a huge comeback on the runways and the red carpet. Everyone from models to celebrities are chiseled to perfection using matte bronzers and darker-toned powders. But the key to making this look work for you is in the tools: brushes. We are going to go over the three different kinds of contouring brushes below. And of course all of them are from cruelty-free brands- why use animal hair when synthetic works just as well?
This is a great brush for people with oval, narrow, elongated face shapes or those of you with very tiny features.
Illamasqua’s brand-new addition to their brush collection is the Blush Up Blush. This brush has a genius ellipse-shaped head, designed to tuck directly under the cheekbone. The special shape creates a soft diffusion of color up onto the cheekbone and it’s still small enough to drag down the side of your nose (a slimming trick!).
This flat-top Kabuki-style brush is fantastic for contouring wider or round -shaped faces.
1) Dip the flat edge of the brush into your bronzer/dark powder and pull down on your cheekbone, starting from next to your ear. It may seem strange to put bronzer by your ear, but it actually looks much more natural starting from there. Bring the edge of the brush down the sides of your neck so you look even.
2)Blend everything in with the top of the brush.
This tapered blending brush is ideal for all face shapes.
The Diamond is a soft couture blending brush that was designed as a foundation brush, but also performs beautifully as a contour brush. The unique tapered shape creates seamless blending. Dip the tip of the Diamond into your bronzer/dark powder and buff this under your cheekbones starting from the ear and down. The tip of the brush will map out your contour and the fluffy texture is great for blending.
This week I attended the launch party for Youngblood Cosmetics’ spring line at the beautiful Montage Hotel and Spa in Beverly Hills with my PR guru Jenn (Refine PR) and my sister Chantal who just happened to be in town. The floral arrangement in the lobby took my breath away! It smelled so amazing in there.
YB’s head makeup artist and Director of Education, Phillip Luque, demonstrated all the cruelty-free and beautiful products that Youngblood will be releasing on March 1st, 2013. Tara Buck, actress from True Blood (she’s the human bartender from Fangtasia!) was his model. Phillip explained that the reason Youngblood Cosmetics is only sold in upscale medi-spas and skin care clinics (and online) is because the creator, Dr. Pauline Youngblood, wanted to keep the brand unique. YB Skin was first created in a medical setting, specifically for patients recovering from harsh medical procedures, and is now popular among makeup artists and their celebrity clients.
I’ve had Youngblood products in my kit for the last couple of years and to be honest with you, my clients truly enjoy them. My personal faves are the Eye Impact Quick Recovery Cream (fabulous on mature skin and puffiness) and the Eye Illuminating Duo which I use on myself everyday. Okay, on to what everyone wants to see: the products!
The spring line includes the Anti-Shine Mattifier, Minerals in the Mist in four scents, Incredible Wear Gel Liner in Lagoon, and a baby doll pink lipstick in Debalicious.
Here’s some fun trivia on the lipstick name: everyday, a Youngblood employee named Debbie Axen would come to the office rocking a drug store-bought baby doll pink lipstick. She said she loved the color and that YB didn’t have anything close to it. When Pauline Youngblood, the creator, heard this, she designed this lipstick color especially for her! Can you imagine having a lipstick named after you? Lady C lipstick- I would buy it. Lucky girl, Deb!
They weren’t kidding about the gorgeous teal gel liner that is Lagoon. This stuff didn’t come off my hand, even after I washed them twice with soap! Side note: to remove gel liners I recommend using oil-based removers. The Youngblood gel liners can also be used underneath eye shadows to intensify the look and make your makeup longer-wearing. Isn’t Debalicious the prettiest pink? It’s universal- it’s build-able and looks great on everyone.
These mineral sprays are fantastic. I spritzed the Relax formula (Lavender and Vanilla) and was pleasantly surprised when it felt tingly on my skin. I’m a big fan of MAC’s Fix + and Mario Badescu’s Rosewater spray, but neither of those actually cool skin down like this one did. I also can appreciate that the spray nozzle gave an extremely fine mist. I didn’t have to jolt and squint when I applied it. These misters can be used before makeup to hydrate and refresh or after to set. The key ingredient that makes these misters so unique is Liquid Green Clay, which helps to detoxify skin. Aaahhhh
Next up is the Anti-Shine Mattifier, which you apply on your T-zone before makeup, just like a primer. I’m actually wearing it today. If you watch my Youtube channel, you know how much I complain about my oily skin and shiny face. It’s raining today so there’s extra humidity in the air and guess what: my face is completely dry, not a drop of oil. This multi-functional formula reduces surface shine and regulates your skin’s oil production. OILY FACES UNITE! It’s also wax-free.
Guess who was also there? The Chae sisters, Linda (Makeup Talk) and Jen (FrmHeadToToe)! We chatted about our crazy experiences at the IMATS and cruelty-free makeup brushes, which we all are on the hunt for. They also taught me how to take a photo through a mirror, ha ha.
I hope you guys find this review helpful, everything you see here will be up for grabs on March 1st, 2013. Youngblood Cosmetics: Cruelty-free beauty CAN be good quality too!
A couple evenings ago, I got a little crafty and came up with this all-natural lip balm. What’s great about this recipe is that it’s easy to make and has very few ingredients. This yum-tastic lip balm is a great stocking stuffer for the holiday seasons, and is great for everyone on your list from moms, dads, boyfriends and kids!
Side note: you can purchase beeswax pellets online to make the process easier, but it’s pricier. I stuck to buying a beeswax candle and grating it to little pieces.
Combine 1 Tablespoon of Coconut oil, 1 Tablespoon of Almond Oil and 1 1/2 Teaspoons of Beeswax in a microwave-safe bowl and heat in the microwave until it’s all melted.
Mix the melted liquid and add 1 1/2 teaspoons of honey. Whisk together then pour into individual containers.
Let the lip balm harden for 30 minutes before closing the lids.