Sunday, July 29, 2012

Nuance By Salma Hayek - Proper Skin Care

I have recently started using, and have fallen in love with a skin care brand called Nuance.  This line was invented by the actress Salma Hayek. I know, I know....a skin care line created by an actress? Weird right? I've noticed other celebs jumping on the skin care bandwagon. Jessica Simpson has a line now, I think Cindy Crawford has one etc. I have not tried any of the other lines, nor do I plan on it, but so far I have tried several products from the Nuance line and I am more than impressed. The actress took 3 years off of acting to focus on the line which was inspired by her grandmother's home recipes. One of the keys to good makeup application is having a good base to apply it to. While a large part of how good or bad our skin is is due to genetics, there are things we can do to help. I think that skin care is a worthwhile investment, and would not hesitate to spend money on creams that truly work. I have tried some of the most expensive brands on the market, and let me tell you, this drugstore brand is just as good, if not better than most of the creams I've tried. Furthermore, Nuance does not test on animals and is paraben free! What more could a woman ask for. Wallet friendly, and delivering true results, this skin care line should not be missed. Nuance also has a line of cosmetics out as well, so I hope that this review helps you navigate your way through the line.

*I have not received any compensation for this review.  All items seen in this post were purchased by me.

Here is a collection of just some of the standout items I own from the line.  From left to right: AM/PM Anti-Aging Super Cream, Just behind is the Intense Hydration Overnight Rejuvenator, Renewed Radiance SPF Moisturizing Day Cream, Overnight Retinol Capsules, Rose Petal Hydrating Balm, and the 2 items in the front are the Anti-Aging Wrinkle Filler Eye Serum and Smoothing Anti-Aging Eye Cream

If you only try 1 item from the line, I recommend the AM/PM Anti-Aging Super Cream or the Retinol Capsules. Both are amazing stand out products. As a test, I applied my usual night cream on 1 side of my face, and Nuance on the other side. The side where I applied Nuance was still moist & hydrated the next morning when I woke up. The Retinol Capsules apply like a primer, making skin look instantly matte and smooth. However, this is recommended as an evening use product due to retinol's ability to increase one's sensitivity to sunlight. If you do use the Retinol during the day, be sure to follow with a sunscreen, such as Nuance Moisturizing Day Cream which contains an SPF of 30.  This cream has Jojoba, Natural Licorice Extract, Shea Butter & Sunflower oil.

 Here are some items from her makeup line including Lights Camera Action Eye Trio, a brown gel eyeliner, lip quad and the Shape & Define Brow Kit in Medium Blonde.  The eyebrow kit comes with 2 little brushes and a mirror for easy travel.

 Here is a closer look at the lip quad, I believe there are 2 different quads available. I have never seen a product in a unique design like this. You get 4 lip colors, that feel very creamy and are very pigmented. In the center is a little lip brush to apply it with.She also makes eyeshadow quads in this format, but I have not tried those yet.
 This is the Hydrating Balm for your lips. This reminds me of the Rosebud Salve that comes in those little blue tins, but this comes in an adorable little jar. I use this on everything from lips, to dry elbows, to cuticles and it works like a charm. This balm contains evening primrose, which is rich in essential fatty acids and helps condition the skin to ease irritation. I found this lip product to be very long lasting, and is a staple for me as a before bedtime ritual.
 Here is a closer look at the Eye Trio. You get a white shimmery highlighter great for under the brow bone or inner corners of the eyes, a black eyeliner and a cream shadow.  This is great for travel as you have all 3 products in one connecting wand.

Here I have swatched them for you. This took no pressure at all, and was just 1 swipe of each product.

 This is the Anti-Aging eye Serum which comes in a rollerball squeeze tube.
 This is the Anti-Aging Eye Cream which has a slanted tip applicator for easy application directly to the eye area.
 So in conclusion, if you are thinking of spending a lot of money on anti-aging products, DON'T!  This line is affordable, and works just as well if not better than most high-end brands I've tried.  There are wonderful natural ingredients in them, they don't contain parabens and best of all, they don't test on animals.

If you try these products, I'd love to hear how they worked for you!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Summer Color Block - BH Cosmetics 120 Color Palette

I used colors from the 120 color palette: using yellow on the inner corner, orange, red, and hot pink on the top lid moving out toward my outer corner and blending in the crease. The bottom lash line has colors from the palette of green, teal and blue, with a little yellow in the inner corner brought down to the inner lash line.  I lined the top and bottom lash line with black eyeliner and finished with 2 coats of mascara to complete the look. I blended 2 blushes from the blush palette on the cheeks

BH Cosmetics is hosting a contest on their website.  I decided to enter, just for fun and thought I'd share my entry with you here!  I used their 120 Color Eyeshadow Palette (2nd Edition), Their 10 Color Blush Palette, and their 66 Color Lip Gloss Palette.

All of these products were purchased by me, and I am receiving no compensation of any type for this posting.

For those who don't know, BH Cosmetics is a makeup company that makes really affordable cosmetics and they are most known for their eyeshadow palettes. They are really fun if you want to create a variety of looks, but don't want to break the bank doing it.

All of the eyeshadow used in this look were from BH Cosmetics and can be easily duplicated using any highly pigmented bright eyeshadow.

As many of you know, color blocking is really popular right now in fashion, and the look has now also translated over to makeup.  This is my take on a fun summer color blocked eye:

 This gloss is from the BH Cosmetics 66 Color Lip Gloss palette, topped with a clear gloss for extra shine.

 Closes up of the eyes

I think this would be a really fun summer look to try.  For an even more daring look, I could have gone further up on the lid with the colors, and further down with the shadow leaving the rest of the skin bare and the lips pale to really make the eyes pop.  I used a white eyeshadow base from NYX to help make the bright colors show up brighter. I recommend using some sort of a base when you are working with these shadows to give the colors something to adhere to. I used colored eye pencils underneath the powered shadow in some areas to help intensify the effect.
Here is the finished look!  I hope you enjoyed this post! Leave any comments in the comment box below. Comments/suggestions/questions are highly encouraged!

Urban Decay Give Away WINNER CHOSEN

Congratulations to Erin who commented on my "Summer Trends" Post.  Thanks to all who participated.

Erin-please email me with your mailing address so I can ship your prize!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Alexis Vogel Inspired Makeup Look

This is a requested look from someone on Facebook. She sent me some looks created by a makeup artist I really like named Alexis Vogel. Alexis is responsible for giving Pam Anderson her signature look. This is my take on that look, and how I created it.  You can use any products that work for you. I've only included the type of product I used so you can choose a brand that works with your budget.

What I used:
  • Full coverage foundation
  • Under eye concealer 1 shade lighter than your foundation
  • Pressed powder
  • Gray eyeshadow
  • Two pigments: nude & pink shimmer powder
  • Gray shadow pencil
  • Shimmery eyeshadow primer
  • Light pink lip stain
  • Nude lip pencil
  • Light pink shimmery gloss
  • Black Mascara
  • Black cake eyeliner
  • Peach shimmer blush 
  • Matte Bronzer 
  • Universal brow pencil
  • Brow sculpting gel

How I created the Look:
    •      Apply foundation, concealer & pressed powder as usual
    •      Define brows with brow pencil & set with brow gel
    •      Prime eyelids (top and bottom) with eye primer
    •      Take the gray eyeshadow pencil and trace along your lower lash line. Smudge with a smudger brush or qtip
    •      Trace along the line you just created with some gray eyeshadow 
    •       Take a folded tissue and hold against the side of your eye touching your outer brow and bottom corner of eye. This will be the guide for your cat eye.  Apply a gray eyeshadow (I used Urban Decay Mushroom) of your choice pushing the shadow down into the lash line.  Take the shadow into your crease, and the outer corner of your eye. The tissue will prevent you from going too far with the shadow
    •         Moisten a qtip and clean up any edges
    •         Take a wet slanted eyeshadow brush and apply the cake eyeliner going in toward the lash line.  Stroke the color down into your natural lash line
    •  Use a blending brush to soften any harsh edges and blend the shadow to desired softness
    • Curl your lashes with an eyelash curler
    • Apply 2 coats of mascara to top and bottom lashes
    • To polish off the eye look, apply a tiny bit of pink shimmer pigment just under the brow bone and to the very center of lid if desired 
    • Apply blush to the apples of cheeks
    • Apply bronzer to temples, cheeks and under the jaw if desired
    • Apply lip stain to lips
    • Outline lips, slightly over drawing the lip line with nude liner
    • Top with gloss
    • Apply a tiny bit of nude pigment to center of lips to make lips look fuller

       This is a dramatic eye with a pale lip. The look is very sexy, and fun and super feminine. I hope you enjoyed this post, and if you have any other looks you'd like to see or any questions, please post in the comment box below.


      Urban Decay Give Away!!!:  I will be giving away an Urban Decay Super Saturated High Lip Color pencil in the brand new color Naked.  All you have to do is comment on one of my posts.  That's it!  I will ship anywhere in the United States. Good luck! 

      **** CONTEST CLOSED*****

      Sunday, July 22, 2012

      Summer Makeup Trends: Bold Colors

      Today's post will be about 2 very popular summer trends that are basically completely opposite from one another. One draws the attention up to the eyes, and the other makes a statement with a bold lip.  Both looks where inspired by looks my cousin sent me as inspiration. She also has a beauty blog, focusing on beauty on a budget; how to look beautiful without breaking the bank.  To see her take on the Icy blue shadow look below, which is a great example of how to do it on a darker skin tone click here: .  While the colors are not exactly what I used,the concept is the same.
      Look #1: Icy blue shadow, nude lip

      As you can see this eyeshadow is quite bold. The nude lip, helps balance the look out, so it doesn't look overdone.  Highly pigmented shadow like this can be difficult to work with, so I usually recommend doing the eyes first here, so that you can clean up any fallout without ruining your foundation. I used a mix of many different shadows to create this look, but most notably a dark matte blue (NARS Outreamer) & E.L.F. Studio Line Eye Transformer.

      Another popular look this summer is a bright lip, paired with a slightly more subtle cat eye.The inspiration was the look seen on Rhianna below:

      Look #2: Hot Pink Lips, cat eye:

       I chose to go a bit more glossy with the lips, and a little less of a wing on the liner. I think this look looks better on tanned skin, so used a bit of self tanner & bronzer so it wasn't such a stark contrast against the bright lip.  Instead of using only black eyeliner, this look uses a little bit of navy liner as well. this helps to really make the whites of the eyes pop. On lips, I did a layering effect to make the look last all day.

       I started with Stila lip pencil in Obsessed, topping that with a hot pink lip balm.  I then layered on a hot pink lip stain. For the base color, I mixed OCC lip tars in the colors Anime & Trollop to get the exact shade I wanted. For shine, I used Urban Decay Lip Junkie Lip Gloss in the color Crush.  You could also obviously use a clear gloss, but I wanted to really add another level of intensity. It's very important when rocking a bold lip like this to make sure your lips are properly exfoliated & moisturized.

      Urban Decay Give Away!!!:  I will be giving away an Urban Decay Super Saturated High Lip Color pencil in the brand new color Naked.  All you have to do is comment on one of my posts.  That's it!  I will ship anywhere in the United States. Good luck!

      Saturday, July 14, 2012

      Makeup Storage Ideas - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

      I thought I'd share some of my makeup storage ideas. Before creating my storage system, I watched hundreds of videos, scanned the Internet for suggestion, and asked others for tips. Here is what works for me. I hope you find it useful. No matter how you decide to store your makeup, one thing is important, you have to have your makeup readily accessible or you simply won't use it. If palettes are stacked on top of each other, you will likely never use that one stuck at the bottom of the pile. My collection is much larger than this, but this is just a few ideas that anyone can benefit from because they are in most cases very inexpensive, and in some cases free. I've taken common household items that one might discard, and found a way to recycle them and reuse them for a new purpose.

      One of the best ideas I've had in terms of makeup storage is reusing my old Crystal Light containers (these are store brand, but you get the idea). Here I took the old container, removed the packaging, washed and dried the container and decorated it with a page from an old Sephora catalog. Inside, I placed lip pencils & lip glosses.

       Here I store eye pencils and eyeliners.  The container is clear, so you can easily see what you need:
       I labeled the top so I can see which container is which, if I have them in a storage cube:
      My other favorite idea, is how I store my palettes. I purchased these bamboo dish racks from for under $20 each.

       These sit on top of an old bookshelf where I store other makeup items on the other shelves.  The palettes are organized, each Urban Decay palette is organized by highlight colors, neutrals, brights etc and over to the right, I have my foundation palettes, blush palettes and other various eyeshadow palettes. My makeup books sit behind them where I can easily grab them for reference.
      Sometimes, I buy eyeshadow refill pans, rather than eyeshadow that comes in a clam shell holder. I'll store these in a magnetic Z-palette (available on shown here:

      The Z-Palette comes with magnetic stickers, so if you depot an eyeshadow from a palette, you can easily pop it into the Z-palette in the configuration that you like.

      I store most of my brushes in a brush roll, but find that my double sided brushes get used a lot so I like to keep those out.  I've found a toothbrush holder that stores my liquid eyeliners in the center, and my double sided brushes:

      My nail polish is stored on shelves where I can easily see my color selection, similar to the nail salon:

      Brushes that I use on a daily basis, I keep out on my makeup table. This simple, yet elegant brush holder was created at a very affordable cost. The holder itself is a candle holder I got for $1 at Family Dollar. The beads were purchased at a craft shop, and I decorated the base with a pastel colored soft headband to tie the look together. I just stick my brushes in and they are readily accessible for everyday use.

      All of my brushes are cruelty free and made of synthetic bristles. I try to be Eco friendly whenever possible as well as you can see by my Eco Tools brushes.

      It's really important to me not to mix dirty and clean brushes. To keep things sanitary, I use the Crystal Light container pictured below, and the clear container the beads came in below to place my dirty brushes when I am done using them.  I clean my brushes daily with a daily brush cleaner, and do a deep clean once a week.

      Another good tip, is to keep the packaging your brushes come with. For example, the mini kabuki brushes pictured above came with this clear packaging. I decorated it with pink laminate, and keep it to store the brushes, as they are too small to fit in a traditional brush roll. I also use the Japanese soy sauce dishes to the right of them to mix my pigments in.

       Pictured above is an old large pill bottle that my dog's eye drops came in. Again I washed the container, and decorated it with an old Sephora catalog. Inside, I store all of my brow tools that I use daily.

      This is a piece of furniture I got on sale at Homegoods.  The top opens up and I store my foundations and concealers to the left and my blushes and bronzers in the bag to the right. The drawers open up, where I store my eyeshadow singles, false lashes and lipsticks.

       For larger pencils that do not fit in the Crystal Light containers, I place them in this pencil box I bought at CVS:

      I hope you found this post helpful. If you are interested in seeing how I organize my Caboodles, makeup artist kit, makeup table, or any other storage ideas, please comment below and I'm happy to share more creative storage ideas with you!

      I am going to start hosting corporate makeup parties for team building exercises as well where I will be doing mini makeovers, makeup lessons and sharing samples with the participants.

      Email me with any inquiries or comment below:

      Wednesday, July 11, 2012

      Urban Decay Smoked Tutorial!

       It's HERE!!! The NEW Urban Decay Smoked Palette! I got so excited, I had to do a quick "tutorial" for you guys. I took this really quick on my camera phone just to show you guys a quick look.
      Step 1: Take Perversion eye pencil (included in kit) and draw a smudgy line across top & bottom lash line.  I used an UD brush designed to smudge the 24/7 pencils (not included), to smudge it all over eyelid, focusing on outer corner. This created the base for the look.  Step 2: Take the color Mushroom and focus it on the inner half of the eyelid.
       Step 3: Layer Asphalt on the center of the lid (NEW COLOR), then put Blackout in the "outer V" and blend into the crease.  Blend the rest of the shades lightly together using a fluffy brush.  Step 4: Apply Kinky to the brow bone as a highlight & a little Freestyle between the crease & brow bone to warm it up.  Step 5: Line waterline and tight line using included Perversion eye pencil. Smudge a little on top & bottom lash line as well if desired.
       Step 6: Apply Urban Decay's SuperCurl Mascara (no lash curler here!) to curl, lengthen and define lashes(not included). And here it is the finished look! Yes I was running around my house with only 1 eye done, but it was super fun to try this out. I recommend this palette. Such a good value. It comes with a mini primer potion too!

      For a video tutorial of this look, click here (or copy and paste to your browser):

      Shortly after I posted this Urban Decay posted a contest for a smokey eye look. I did not win, but here is the look I submitted. I basically followed the same steps above, but added some Rockstar to the lid for a more modern look. Here are the pics: