Friday, February 18, 2011

Make-up junkie!!

I would like to start off by apologizing for disappearing over the two months! Between the holidays and work I honestly have no idea where the time has gone. Life has been good, but going at lighting speed. My goal is to try to balance everything a dedicate a little more time to my blog! :)

I thought I would dedicate this post to make-up. If you know me well you know that I'm OBSESSED with make-up. I believe this obsession began as a little girl when I started dancing competitively. We had to wear very heavy make-up in order for it to be seen from stage. I started learning the make-up process all within the walls of Pat Hall's Dance Unlimited. False eye lashes, bright red name it! My Mom and I had it all down to a science, including all my crazy hair-do's. It really was a special time in my childhood that I will always cherish. We were on the road usually 2-3 weekends out of the month so it consumed many years of my life, but I wouldn't trade it for anything. Here is just a little glimpse of one of my all time favorite performances, Baby Elephant Walk (and as you can see...heavy make-up!:

Now back to my make-up obesession. If I read about a new lipstick, gloss, blush, mascara, eyeshadow, and/or foundation I am headed to the store to give it a try. I LOVE IT! I love doing my make-up, most days, and I love doing other friend's make-up. I like to experiment with different things, colors, and textures.
I have an impressive make-up collection. I have one drawer devoted completely to lipsticks, glosses and chapsticks. I have a second drawer that has many fun eyeshadows, liners and blushes. I also have 2 shelves of the cabinet in our bathroom where I keep most of my day to day make-up. A dream job of mine would be to test new make-up products and report back to the readers and consumers. Maybe one day.

I'll take some time to mention a few of my obsessions these days. These seem to change on a monthly basis. I love the website bluemercury.  I also take advantage of the "special events" that Nordstrom will have from time to time at different make-up counters. It's a great way to discover new products that compliment your complexion or a way to learn different ways to use the make-up you already own.  Please let me know if you have any beauty favorites because trust me, I would love to try them!

I think it's a great product, but I definitely don't wear it on a daily basis. If you're going to buy one get Smashbox's Photo Finish. It's the best. It's very lightweight and doesn't clog your pores. You can definitely tell a difference when you wear it too. Your make-up goes on flawless and it also camouflages wrinkles!

Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer

Tinted moisturizer/Foundation
I'm not really to the point where I think foundation is necessary. I'm a tinted moisturizer kind of girl! I wore Stila's for years and years and loved it and still do. I decided it was time to change things up a bit, especially after reading in several magazines about Laura Mercier's tinted moisturizer. It continues to get rave reviews so I thought I would try it out. Verdict? Love it! I just bought my second tube so I think that sums it up.

Stila tinted moisturizer

Laura Mercier's Tinted Moisturizer

I get all of my powder eyeshadow from Bobbi Brown or Stila. Bobbi Brown has great classic colors that are perfect for the work week. Stila has so many FUN colors to wear and they go on very well and last all day. There is nothing worse than getting an eyeshadow that basically disappears when you place it on your eye. I want something where the color stands out and will last throughout the day. I'm not one to carry my make-up with me to work, or out for that matter, so I want something long lasting.

Bobbi Brown and Stila both make great little compact sets that usually come with 3 or 4 different colors. One color is usually your base, one for the crease of your eye and the third for your liner. Some of these sets will also come with a complimentary blush. I love these sets and have many of them.

Here is a portion of my eyeshadow collection.

Here are my essential make-up brushes.

Bobbi Brown Eye Palette

Stila Eye Shadow

About a year or two ago I discovered Benefit's cream eyeshadow. Now I can't live without it and use almost every single day. They have several different colors to choose from and the best thing is that it doubles as an eyeshadow primer. When I don't feel like a big make-up day I will simply sweep a little of the color on my eyes and I'm ready to roll. I always use this cream eyeshadow as my primer too. I bought a very neutral color so it works well under all my eyeshadows without changing their color. It holds your eyeshadow in place all day long.

Creaseless Cream Eyeshadow-liner

I love to play with different blushes. Right now my two favorites are Nars Orgasm (looks great on everyone) and Tarte's cheek stain. Tarte's cheek stain is especially nice in the winter when your skin is drier. It adds a nice healthy glow that lasts throughout the day.  I also have a great classic pink blush from Bobbi Brown that I use occasionally. I have heard many wonderful things about Chanel's blush so I think I may have to splurge on it soon. I've debated for well over a year about whether or not I should try it out and I just haven't done it. Maybe this spring I'll try out a new color from their line.

Nars blush

Chanel Blush

Tarte Cheek Stain

I recently read in Instyle magazine that a cream blush or highlighter is good to use. A Nars expert said to put the highlighter on your cheeks before applying your foundation or tinted moisturizer. I was intrigued by this so I went out and bought the Nars Orgasm Illuminator. I love it! It's very subtle but gives you just the right amount of shimmer.

Nars Orgasm Illuminator
I used to be hooked on Cargo's bronzer until Sephora stopped selling it. I just noticed a few weeks ago that Ulta carries the line now so that made me very excited. I like a bronzer without shimmer. I feel like between a liquid highlighter and blush that's plenty of shimmer. Cargo has a great matte brozner that doesn't make you look too dark. When Sephora stopped selling it I ended up buying Nars' bronzer which has done the trick too.

*Here is a trick when applying your bronzer. Squeeze your lips together like you're making a fish mouth. Using a contoured bronzer/blush brush apply the bronzer into the hollow area under your cheek bones. It will go on a little dark, but after applying release your lips back to normal and blend. Then place your blush on the apples of your cheeks, above the bronzer.

Cargo Bronzer

Nars Bronzer

I'm a huge fan of using my eyeshadow as a liner. If I want a defined line I will wet my liner brush with a little water, but mostly I just use a dry brush. If I don't use my shadow then I love Bobbi's gel eyeliner.

Long Wear Gel Eyeliner

I will have to say I'm torn between two mascaras. If you've never tried Lacome's Cils Booster XL and Definicils mascara then you're missing out. The Cils Booster is a super enhancing mascara base and the Definicils is a high definition mascara.  The combination is simply magical. A sorority sister of mine first introduced me to this combo and it's hard to go wrong with.  I can promise you that it will look like you're wearing false eyelashes. I always get compliments on my eyes when I wear this combination.


Cils Booster XL

My second favorite is Dior's DiorShow mascara. It is fabulous, just fabulous. It's a big, fat bristled brush and it never clumps. Heavenly!

DiorShow Mascara

As far as drugstore brands are concerned, it seems like they're always coming up with a new mascara that is supposed to be bigger and better from all the others. Who knows....they don't excite me all that much because they always, always clump.

I love Chanel's Rouge Coco lipsticks. I usually don't wear lipstick because I feel like it drys out my lips. Some of them have a bad smell to them too. Chanel's new line is a classic, lightweight creme lipstick that features a Hydratendre complex that helps soften, soothe and condition lips. I bought my first bright red lipstick last year in this line and it really does look great.

Rouge Coco

I also like Nars' lipsticks. You can choose between satin, semi-matte, and sheer. I bought the sheer lipstick in Damage and have enjoyed wearing it. It's a perfect, subtle color for the work week. .

Nars Sheer Lipstick

At some point last year I came across Dior's 'Addict' High Shine lipstick. It's a very luxurious lipstick that adds the perfect finishing touch to your look. I purchased it in Raspberry Rush and love the way it looks, especially in the spring and summer months.

Dior 'Addict' High Shine Lipstick

Lip Gloss
Bobbi Brown! I love her little lip gloss tubes. There is one thing I can't stand and that's sticky lip gloss. You know the kind where you turn your head and your hair gets stuck in your lip gloss....ugh! Bobbi has a great lightweight gloss that comes in amazing colors. I must have 10 different ones!

Bobbi Brown Lip Gloss
If you're going to wear all this great make-up then you have to make sure you take care of your skin. As I've mentioned in posts before, I'm pretty much a carbon copy of my Mother and Grandmother. Fortunately they've always taken wonderful care of their skin and I've tried to follow in their footsteps. I know I didn't do myself any favors all those years that I was a tanning bed junkie, but that's all behind me now....well the tanning BED part. When summer rolls around I spend basically every Saturday and Sunday lounging by our pool. I realize that it isn't good for my skin but I do wear sunscreen these days instead of slathering myself with tanning oil.

I have always been very particular with my bedtime routine since high school. If you want to ask anyone about it, talk to Kim. :) No matter how late of a night we had back in college I always washed my face, put on my moisturizer and brushed my teeth! It may take me awhile to get ready for bed, and get myself ready in the mornings but I truly believe all my hard work pays off.

My new moisturizer of choice is Philosophy. When it comes to a moisturizer, you get what you pay for. I realize that many skin care lines can be very expensive but I do think it's worth investing a little more money into products these days. Philosophy has a wonderful line in general and for Christmas I received Hope in a jar. It has a great clean, lightweight smell and texture. I'm hooked!

For my eye cream, hands down the best I've used so far is Bobbi Brown, but it is expensive. It's $65 for a tiny little jar. Granted, that little jar will last you about 6 months I know that's a heavy price tag for a little jar of cream. I realize most ladies probably don't think they need a separate eye cream but YOU DO! Walk to a mirror right now and take a close look at your eyes. I guarantee you that most folks have little crows feet around their eyes. Maybe even some of you have dark circles. Ladies, these are only going to get worse as you age. Do something about it now because if you haven't started already then you're behind the game. If you can't fork over $65 for eye cream then there are plenty of other options. I have tried L'Oreal's Revitalift and Neutrogena's and they're both great.

On a side note, if you're looking for a good self tanner that doesn't stink give Clarins a try. It's great and it works well on your face too. I bought mine at Nordstrom's.

I hope you've enjoyed my ramblings about make-up! If you're fortunate enough to be outside today I hope you're enjoying this wonderful weather!