Thursday, August 27, 2009

To Splurge or To Save

Every so many months one magazine or another has an article about what products to save on and which ones to buy high end versions. I don't always agree with their lists so I decided to post my own. It's always subject to change of course, I've tried low and high end of every beauty product and sadly I've wasted a lot of money on things I didn't like that ended up in my "unused" drawer. If I hear of a great new product I'll run out to Sephora, the department store, the drugstore or wherever to try it, but over the years this is how I've become comfortable shopping for beauty products. Products I Tend to Save On:
  Mascara. I've used them all, you name it and I've bought it. A year ago I decided this was useless to spend a lot of money on because I have to toss it every 3 months anyway. Sure I feel glamorous putting on DiorShow but the end product isn't any better than when I use L'Oreal. My old standbys are Max Factor 2000 Calorie and L'Oreal Voluminous.
  Eyeliner. It doesn't matter how much I spend on them, what I wear underneath them or what I set them with - I still have to reapply. I've spent lots of money on different kinds of black ones but I've only bought cheap colored eyeliner as I don't wear them often. My cream eyeliner is from Clinique (cheaper than Bobbi Brown or MAC and it has a beautiful finish). I also own several eyeliners from Rimmel and colored eyeliners from Sonia Kashuk.
  Lipgloss. Another one of those products I have to reapply a couple times a day. I tend to like a variety and if I get them cheap then I can get more. I love Revlon's Colorstay glosses. I also own several from L'Oreal. Nowadays you can get very pigmented gloss for less money and in recent months they've come out with prettier packaging.
  Lipstick. I don't actually wear a lot of lipstick and I would say my collection is divided pretty evenly between department / drug store products. However if I wanted a new color I would definitely go look at my local drugstore circulars to see what's on sale. It all wears the same in my opinion and I reapply during the day. Really I will wear any brand of lipstick as long as the color suits me but I prefer gloss so I wouldn't spend a lot of money on lipstick.
  Face Powder. I tend to buy MAC blot powder from the CCO (not full price) when I run out but I've used several drugstore brands that worked just as well. Everyone is talking about the HD powders so I may give one a go but again this is one of the products I usually reapply a couple times a day so I wouldn't want to pay full price for a product that works the same.
Products I Tend to Spend More On:
Foundation. I have never used a drugstore foundation. I like to try samples of new foundations before I buy and I like to test the product for the best color match. Also because I had several years of acne issues I'm super timid to use products that I'm not familiar with. My favorite foundation is Korres Wild Rose Foundation but for many many years I was in love with Estee Lauder Day Wear.
  Concealer. This is the product above all others I would buy from a department store. It is super important to get the coloring right (I enlist the help of a MUA) for whatever discoloration you have. I'm loyal to my MAC Studio Finish but I would not be opposed to trying a new brand if I had a MUA help choosing my color.
  Eye Primer. I'm starting to realize how important this is. I have a couple of paint pots / cream color bases and I own a few eye pencils / shadesticks I have used as an eyeshadow base before but not with an actual primer. I received a sample of the Two Faced Shadow Insurance with my last Sephora order and I will be picking up a full sized tube this weekend. I know there are drugstore versions and I may experiment eventually but I really liked the performance of this product.
  Eyeshadow. Less fallout, richer pigment and less filler. Most of my eyeshadows are MAC and some were purchased from the CCO but I also own several from Lancome and Chanel. This would be debateable I'm sure as there are diehard drugstore eyeshadow defenders but I prefer to spend more money on shadow.
  Blush. Same as the eyeshadow, I feel that high end blush has better pigment and you can try the color on before you purchase. I used a drugstore blush for years (Covergirl Soft Mink) and I noticed an instant difference when I started spending more money - I didn't have to reapply it, it didn't "puddle" in the middle of my cheek midday, and I didn't have to use as much. I have used blushes from MAC, Lorac, Nars, and Tarte
  Bronzer. This one might be debateable. My bronzer collection is small and divided between department store and drugstore brands. I like multipurpose bronzers that I can also use as a contour so I like ones without shimmer and that blend well. My favorite is Nars Multiple in Toumata but I also own a MAC MSF Natural for this purpose and a new Laura Geller one that has been working well.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Tag: Tell me something...

1. What is your favorite item of clothing? My new purple lounge pants, they fold over at the waist have have tiny skulls printed on them. My Alma Mater had Pirates as the mascot so I love cute skull and piratey things. I bought these from the P!NK line at Victoria's Secret.
 2. What are your biggest obsessions? Currently perfume is my biggest obsessions. And obviously makeup, I already have several items listed to buy. I also enjoy cooking and creating new recipes.
 3. Who inspires you? My mom of course. Celebrities I admire include Audrey Hepburn and Jennifer Aniston.
 4. Who is your favorite designer and why? Not sure, I don't really follow "designers". I love Emilio Pucci style prints though.
 5. What is your favorite song ever? This could change but I love If I Ever Leave This World Alive by Flogging Molly
 6. What is your favorite song right now? Off I go by Greg Laswell. I've had it in my head since the season finale of Grey's Anatomy.
 7. If you were a sweetie what would you be? I love junior mints. I wouldn't say no to a kitkat either though.
 8. Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet - what words would yo use to describe your rainbow? Red scarf, orange nail polish, yellow flats, blue jeans, indigo sweater, violet eyeshadow. Stupidest question ever, I wasn't sure how to answer it.
 9. What is your favorite film? Steel Magnolias.
 10. Who is your favorite actor? Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler
 11. If you could be anywhere in the world right now where would you be? Ireland.
 12. What are your 3 favorite smells? Stella by Stella McCartney, Honey I Washed the Young'uns by Candles by Victoria (or any of her candles), and Baking cookies.
 13. What are you 3 favorite tastes? Chocolate, Pepsi, and Cheese
 14. What is your most treasured possession? Lilly of course if I can only pick one but I also love a handmade quilt that my grandma and mom made for me.
 15. What did you always want to be / do when you grew up? Tinker Bell :)
 16. If you were an ice cream, what flavor would you be? Chocolate
 17. If someone made a short film about your life, who would play you? No way would I give that up, thats actually a part I could play well.
 18. What would your perfect afternoon consist of? Going for dinner and cocktails with the girls.
 19. If you were a flower what would you be? I love the smell of peonies.
 20. Tell me one random it you favorite line from a song, scene from a movie, or quote from a book...or tell me something you love. "Pink is my signature color." -Shelby, Steel Magnolias

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Tag: 5 Current Obsessions

Alot of bloggers are updating with their current obsessions so I'm joining in.
 1. Fruit. I adore the fresh fruit available now. All the stands along side the road selling peaches, berries, melons - ah the best part of summer.
 2. Greek yogurt. So tangy and smooth I could eat it all day.
 3. Perfume. Every department store and beauty store I have gone into I have to stop and smell everything. I'm planning on a total fragrance revamp, for the past year I've been trying to finish a few old bottles of perfume so I could get all new ones.
 4. Hair color. I have had every hair color imaginable and even though I loved the caramel highlights I had for summer I love my new dark color so much more. My stylist used a cool medium-dark brown as my base and blended in thin copper highlights.
 5. Dresses. My shorts, skirts, and tank tops have been neglected this summer. After work I come home and it's so hot that I want to slip into a simple cotton day dress. I bought several new ones this year from Gap and Old Navy and I've been living in them in the afternoons and weekends.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Victoria's Secret Lipgloss Promotion

As a Victoria's Secret Angel promotion I received a coupon for a free mini lipgloss with any cosmetics purchase. It was difficult for me to find a product I wanted to purchase. The eyeshadow colors are gorgeous but they're too creamy to stay put on my oily lids. Most of the shades were more shimmer than pigment. Same with the blushes, the colors were gorgeous but had too much shimmer. I was impressed with their eyeliners, especially the range of colors and made a mental to keep them in mind. The glosses and lipsticks were gorgeous and I had almost made up my mind to choose one of them. In the end I decided to buy a limited edition product- Christian Siriano Kajal Eye Liner. This isn't nearly as long and pointy as some of the kajals I have seen reviewed on makeupalley but it applies easily and I'm hoping to use this on my water line.
My mini lipgloss sample is in the color Blush, a very natural "your lips but better" kind of gloss. The size is perfect to carry around in a clutch at night.
I feel like I racked up at VS today, I had also received a voucher for a free pair of undies so I picked up a pair of those as well.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Searching for New Sunglasses

I'd really like a new pair of designer shades. I love my Maui Jims and I don't want to cheat on them but they're so...practical. Don't get me wrong, I still feel that they are the best eye protection from the sun, but the company seems to make shades that look more sporty than fashionable. I do like these:

Maui Jims - Kula. Still very sport but flattering as well. I love shield style sunglasses because they tend to look good on my face.

For a more designer look I LOVE these:

Dior Glossy - I love size, shape and color of these sunglasses. I know some people are over them but I'm really hoping to get a pair of these.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Tag: Beauty Questions

Love this tag, it's perfect for a lazy Sunday! What's your favorite makeup look? Colors that enhance a "faux" tan. I always use bronzer and highlighter with slightly smokey eyes and natural lips. I've just recently started experimenting with nude lips.

What part of your body do you love? I get complimented a lot on my eyes. Without makeup I have Bette Davis'esque eyes that are blue/green. My lashes are naturally long which makes them look even bigger. I line my water line every day to try and make them look more almond shaped.

Who is your beauty icon? Audrey Hepburn and Jennifer Aniston. What beauty products make you feel instantly sexy? Scented body lotion, perfume, smokey eyeliner, and occasionally fake lashes that I use to help thicken my own. How do you look after your skin? Skin care is the most important thing to me. I wash and moisturize my face twice a day with products that are pH balanced. I use day and night eye cream and facial serum during the day. Once a week I exfoliate my face and body. I spray my brushes daily with cleaner and wash them thoroughly twice a month. I try to drink lots of water, get my daily dose of antioxidants (via fruits and vegetables), use sunscreen, get 8 hours of sleep, take a fish oil supplement, and sleep on a satin pillowcase. What is your signature scent? I've been wearing Givenchy Irresistible for 3 years. I'm hoping to get a new fragrance around Christmas this year. What are your hair care secrets? I wash my hair every three days and use a hair masque once a week. I always use protectant before I heat style my hair. Again I sleep on a satin pillowcase which is suppose to prevent breakages (and facial wrinkles). I take a multivitamin everyday, folic acid and B12 is suppose to be very good at helping to grow healthy strong hair. How do your pamper yourself? Usually I treat myself at home; I like to do a hair conditioning treatment and a manicure and pedicure once a week. Since I do it myself most of the time I like to buy nice scrubs, lotions, and potions to use. Occasionally I'll pay to get my nails or brows done and I visit my stylist every 2-3 months for a cut and color. What is your beauty pet peeve? Lipstick on the teeth, uneven eye liner, and foundation that isn't blended into the neck. What would be your desert island must haves? Sunscreen, clean water, lotion, hair conditioner, and lip balm. I can get away without makeup as long as I didn't have a mirror. Finally, do you have a beauty philosophy? "There's no such thing as natural beauty" - Dolly Parton, Steel Magnolias I'm not sure if I necessarily believe it but this is one of my favorite movie lines.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

A Night of Depotting

I'm depotting MAC products now as I'm typing. I have 9 shadows to depot and 1 blush. For months I have successfully put this off but I decided to stop procrastinating, especially when I'm trying to "downsize" my makeup collection. I'm using the flat iron method that I learned from MakeupGeek on youtube. It's not as difficult as I was expecting it to be. My iron is on 320 degrees and I'm leaving it on the parchment paper for about 5 minutes per pan. I couldn't find round magnets after visiting 2 office supply stores and 2 crafts stores so I had to buy the magnet strips and cut them into squares. I don't think next time I'll be as timid, especially when I already have everything I need to do it.