Thursday, December 22, 2011

Blackout - last look from the NAKED 2 Palette

Okay here it is - my last look using Blackout from the UD Naked 2 Palette. I know that a black matte shadow isn't really life shattering but one that's easily blend-able with maintaining lots of pigment is great to have in a palette!

I used Pistol, gray taupe metallic shimmer, on my lid. Tease (taupe) in my crease, I then used Blackout as my outer - V contour shade. I also blend it with Tease in my crease and I also blended it along my lower lash line. NARS Larger than Life Long-Wear Eyeliner in Via Veneto, matte black on my top lash line only.

I know it's very basic and neutral, which could read as BOR.IN.G! But sometimes that's all you want - just neutral, polished and could be slapped on the face in 5mns flat!

I think this challenge was a misnomer - each look didn't take more than 7mns to put together. This palette will really speak to the beauty novice or just plain lazy girl!

Now that I've completed my mission I find myself wondering what to use as my eye shadow and yes, I'm still reaching for this palette to play along with my MAC, NARS and Edward Bess shadows in my collection.

The good news: they are all getting along nicely!

With the holidays literally around the corner, I'll be taking a small break - posting here and there so I'd like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy Holiday!

Take this time to hug your friends and family just thirty seconds longer, slow your pace and take a stroll down the street to admire holiday window decorations, smile at strangers, drink hot chocolate, yes, eat that second holiday sugar cookie and just be thankful to wakeup every morning!

Because this is what the Holidays mean to me and I hope it does to you.

And yes, it is okay to take advantage of holiday sales just for yourself!

Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely day!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Coming Soon to a Drugstore Near You!

This week I review a new dry shampoo from Suave.

It's supposed to be comparable to Bumble's dry shampoo but I've never tried there's. So I compared it to another leading drugstore brand.

Read more here.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Busted and Verve EOTD

Here's an eye look that took me no more than 5 minutes:

A very lovely plummy brown with a metallic shimmer finish. I blended Tease in the crease and Foxy and Bootycall on my brow bone. I lined 3/4 of my upper and lower lash line with MAC Eye Kohl pencil in Coffee, a black brown. I smudge a bit of Busted on top of the Coffee liner on my lower lash line. I added layers of Armani's Eyes to Kill Mascara to finish my eye look.

Also used Anastasia Beverly Hills Beauty Express for Brows and Eyes in Brunette.

On my cheeks - NARS Sin, berry w/gold shimmer and Casino bronzer, deep brown w/gold shimmer, to contour. I used NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Bahama - neutral pink brown, UD Lip Junkie gloss in Naked, neutral pink.

Sorry, if this is starting to be played out but here's one more look:

Verve - a greige oyster shell shimmer:

To take it up a touch, I added Siren 24/7 Waterproof Liquid Liner (teal w/blue shift shimmer), also by Urban Decay. This is when I love a teal liner - it really pops against a neutral shadow, especially for us dark brown eyed girls!

As usual Tease (taupe) is my crease color. Yes, this really is a no-fail crease color. It adds enough color contrast to an otherwise metallic/shimmer lid.

This was part of an informal department holiday cocktail party and I must say it did get me in the right spirit. The only problem was that I couldn't stop thinking about that afternoon beer waiting for me at the pub next door and it was only 8am!!

Don't worry, I got one last look and then I'm done with this palette, I promise! You have to admit that it's pretty impressive that I went this long with just using one palette exclusively...

Friday, December 16, 2011

What I Want for the Holidays....for Miss Omni Media

Happy Friday!

I was asked to participate in a very fun post, which was pure fantasy for me. It's a yearly post for Miss Omni Media - they ask their writers for 5 items on their wish  list. Each day till Xmas they feature a Wish List.

Here's my list, which caused Mr. Lex to laugh in my face:

The only thing I see myself successfully purchasing on my own - is that fragrance bottle, travel sized version of course and perhaps a week and a half in Italy (I'd have to combine Rome and Florence into one visit, instead of a full month languidly moving about the country).

The Louboutins, the Dolce and Gabbana suit and that gorgeous Chanel purse will always be on the wish list of my dreams!!

Read more here....

Thursday, December 15, 2011

YDK Look of the Day

If there is one thing Mr. Lex more than anything, aside from his NY Giants, bacon, Baseball, his girls, it's EFFICIENCY!

I hope he's proud of my efficiency creating several looks from just one palette: UD's latest, NAKED 2.

Today, I embrace another glitter bomb shadow - YDK, a cool mocha bronze loaded with chunky golden, microglitter.

(MAC NC 42, for skin tone reference)

Once again, Tease (taupe) is used in the crease, Snakebite (golden brown, bronze shimmer). I complete the look with Foxy as my brow high light shade (yes, again!). This time I went with my favorite golden bronze liner, UD 24/7 Waterproof Eye Liner in Smog on top and bottom lash line. I gently smoke my lower lash line by smudging with my MAC #219 brush. Eyes are finished with layers of GA's Eye to Kill Mascara.

And here's what the rest of my face looked like:

Today I went with on of my favorite Chanel Glossimer in Mystic (described as a shimmery copper red but it almost takes a pink tone on my lips). Blush is NARS G-Spot Multiple and I contoured with Edward Bess Bronzer in Daydream.

Like with Chopper, have makeup remover within arm's reach...there will be some fallout. But this is not the glitterbomb that Chopper can be!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Pistol FOTD

To compliment my abstract snow leopard cardigan (grey/black), I wanted a charcoal eye. So I turn to my Naked 2 palette to see what I can come up with.

I went with Pistol.

It's a gorgeous grey taupe shimmer - I seem to pull out the purple tones on my lids. I contour with Tease (my new favorite Taupe crease color). My outer V shade is the Busted (deep, plummy brown). I used Foxy (matte beige) as my brow bone highligher. I used Bobbi Browns Graphite Shimmer Ink Long Wearing Gel Eyeliner on my top and bottom lash line. I did smudge my lower lash line with Pistol to bring it all together. Completed with GA's Eyes to Kill Mascara.

I think Pistol is slowly becoming my next favorite shadow (next to Tease). I really don't have a dupe in my collection - well I'm sure if I DIG DEEP into my collection I might find something remotely close to it but I don't think I do. I realize I could be lying to myself just to comfort my weeping wallet.

On my lips I used NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Bahama, my favorite nude pink brown shade, and UD Lip Junkie Gloss in Naked on top.

Also used - MAC Gingerly, peachy bronze, on my cheeks.

I am quite pleased on how this look turned out and it didn't take that long to do. This is a great look that pretty much goes the distance. If I were to take this out on date night, I swap the brownish pink lips for a wine  gloss.

I am anxious to see how well Pistol plays with the other colors in my collection!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Chopper EOTD

In attempt to embrace the holiday season, I bought a red lipstick - NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil, Cruella. Okay technically a pencil but it is RED no less! I didn't want to do my typical black lined eye (upper lash line only) so I knew my go-to neutral eye would be created with my new Urban Decay Naked 2 Palette.

I went with Chopper, a lovely peachy, copper LOADED with silver chunky glitter. Yes, there will be fallout but if you clean up with a swab, makeup remover and save your foundation/concealer for last - you'll be just fine!

 Chopper - lid
Tease (cool tone taupe) - crease
Snakebite (deep, metallic brown bronze) - outer V corner and lower lash line.

**lots and LOTS of Giorgio Armani's Eyes to Kill Mascara**

Here it is paired with Cruella on my lips:

I am a fan of the NARS Velvet Lip goes on pretty easily. When it dries down, it's not an uncomfortable, dry skin cracking when you smile kind of feeling. It stays put and the color doesn't fade for about 5 hours. I didn't reapply till after my gym session. I do make sure to apply over a layer of Kiehl's Lip Balm. I also add a thin layer of this lip balm when I feel like my needs just a bit of moisture.

I think this is office, friendly holiday look.

Oh and my latest obsession:

(Faux-Fur Trim Sweater Boots)
 It's a little personal Xmas gift to myself while picking up gift for others at Old Navy. I score these for 50% off, originally $19.94. I love them! They are perfect
for freezing, cold nights and the fact that I bought these on sale just makes me love them even more.

Is it sad that this is what I look forward to most after a day at work? Well besides, seeing my family of course!

Naked 2 Palette - My Review for Miss Omni Media

Happy Monday Lovelies!

I just wanted to share my brief breakdown for Urban Decay's Naked 2 palette. I wanted to keep it short and sweet just so I don't sound like a broken record.

In a nutshell, if you already have the first palette - you really don't need one. If you are a neutral shadow hoarder then by all means add yourself to the waiting list if you haven't already!

Please click here, for the article.

Starting tomorrow I will beging posting looks featured with this palette. I have been using this exclusively for a while and it's very basic palette. You really can't go wrong with these colors. Just be sure you have a makeup removing soaked cotton swab handy if you choose to wear the chunky glittery shadows: Chopper or YDK.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

This Week in Miss Omni Media - Week of 12/5/11

I pick my favorite item from NARS 2011 Holiday collection and it might be a shocker!

But since you probably know me all to well it won't come as newsflash or anything like that:

Ponderosa eye cream has gotten lots of play lately, well it's taking a disco nap since I decided to exclusively use my new Naked 2 palette (more on that later!).

To see how I used this golden brown eye cream, click HERE!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


Look what arrived in my (work) mail box:

I am so excited about this since I skipped the first Naked palette because I got tired waiting for the next wave of shipment to come in and once it became a permanent item, I just got tired of the hype. This time I decide to jump the Naked bandwagon once I got an email for Urban Decay. Also, it was free Priority Mail shipping - how could I lose? I'll be posting looks and thoughts soon (early next week).

As you know, I started an unhealthy addiction to fragrances and I blame a very, very bad BUNNY for this...

This is my second round of sample purchases from the awesome fragrance site:

You can buy samples of almost any perfume out there in the world. I am officially addicted to niche brands!

The best part of ordering from them is the candy they put in your orders - such a special little treat and just great customer service!

I know, Xmas is just around the corner and here I am purchasing crap for myself. Oh well, I'm sure my family will appreciate my makeup and lovely scent as they receive gifts from me!

My wallet on the other hand.....

Monday, December 5, 2011

Cross Promotion: Mr. Lex's Latest Creation

I loved our old coffee table. It was plywood, simple and cheap but most importantly, it was mine. I bought it with my own money when I was living on my own (for the first time) in Seattle, WA. I had a hard time parting with it, mainly for sentimental reasons.

Well until Mr. Lex revealed our new coffee table that he made by himself (and some help from his welding buddy).

I love this table because it's real cedar, it looks like a grown-up's table and most importantly he made it!

For more of Mr. Lex's latest offerings:

As for my old, worn out coffee table - it has a new home: holding up our crap in my husband's office!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Loving It - November Favorites

Here's what I was feeling in November and yes, I realize that it's already December 5th.

No time like the present, right?

1. NARS Multiple, G-SPOT
2. Rescue Beauty Lounge Nail Polish, Anne
3. MAC Eye Pencil - Coffee
4. Serge Luten Feminite du Bois
5. Decant bottle of SL FDB
6. NARS Cream Eye Shadow - Ponderosa

I love the pink glitter in this polish, it softens up the deep olive brown tones.

I love these items but the one item I have reached for the most is the MAC Eye Pencil in Coffee, it goes on smooth and easily and I love that it really is a Black Coffee color.

And here is a snap shot of G-Spot on my NC42 skin tone. It looks lovely in flash photography. And I do not wear this Multiple this heavily - I just added an extra layer just so you could see it on my face.

I am really going to attempt to write about fragrance so please bear with me. I have discovered that all the scents I gravitate has a musk, wood or oud note in it. This particular scent has notes of clove, plum, peach, cinnamon, orange blossom, cedar, sandalwood, vanilla and benzoin. I get a hit of the fruitiness from the plum and peach but for a quick moment then it settles into a lovely spicy wood. It truly is lovely scent. I know that Serge Lutens originally created this for Shiseido and the formulation has changed slightly once it was released for the SL line. I can't compare it to the original but I'm so pleased with this version.

I also discovered that fragrance collecting can get you in trouble especially if you are buying samples regularly like I do from this site.

My November love list is short but it is sweet nonetheless!

Monday, November 28, 2011

I HEART MAC: My Daily Brushes

How could I fail to mention the brushes that get me through sleepy mornings 9 out of 10 times?

MAC #219 - Pencil brush, $24.50/USD.
Not a smudged eye look goes out the door without this brush!  It softens hard lines and it just really makes my smoky eyes look polished. If I am doing a really easy eye look I will use this brush to smudge a dark brown liner on my top lash line on top of a nude cream shadow on my lids. I also use this to deposit shadow on my lower lash line if I don't want to use a traditional eyeliner. It's quick and easy - I rely on the brush a lot!

MAC #217 - Blending brush, $22.50/USD.
A great all around brush: use with paint pots, you can use this to apply your eye cream/primer before shadows, use to blend shadow on your lid or crease. This is my crease and outer-v brush. I have deep set eyes so this is brush head is a good size for my eye sockets.  I love the oval shape of the bristles in this brush.

MAC #239 - Eye Shader Brush, $24.50/USD
This is a nice densely packed brush that picks up a good amount of product.  A pretty basic brush that you can depend on to get the job done!

I believe the bristles are natural animal hair - the site doesn't state otherwise if they are synthetic or not.
As for care, I try to wash my brushes at least once a week. But with the holidays, I have been somewhat lazy. I will clean once every 2wks - I hope I didn't gross anyone out with that statement. Also, use baby shampoo - I bought a travel sized Johnson & Johnson's Baby Shampoo from Target for about $1 and it lasted me for a long time. Now, I just steal some from my daughter's bottle. This is a lot cheaper than buying the MAC Brush Cleanser bottle ($13/USD). The handles are wood and have nickel-plated ferrules. So when drying, I like to have the bristles lean over the edge of my bathroom sink. This way if there is any dripping it lands into the sink and keeps the wood handles of my brushes dry.
And my all time favorite brush that has gotten me through many mornings - this guy

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Charlie Brown Thanksgiving!
Yes, here in the US we are celebrating Thanksgiving. You know that American holiday based on the first meal the Native Americans shared with the Pilgrims that's now just the event that's right before the mother of all retail sales, "BLACK FRIDAY"...seriously? I don't even brave the whole Black Friday sales - Jesus could be opening the doors and Elvis could be working the cash register and I wouldn't even go.

I like to sleep!

Seriously, some of these stores are opening their doors at midnight tonight! I think we have lost sight of what matters most - time with our loved ones.

Also, that's why online shopping was created!

Some things I am thankful for:
  • My wonderful husband, Mr. Lex
  • My family - especially my awesome sisters - I couldn't have asked for better best friends!
  • My wonderful friends that have my back through thick and thin
  • My health - I bitch about my weight a lot but I am thankful that I have the strength and ability just to walk up three flights of stairs. I should also remind myself that the average Thanksgiving meal is roughly 3500 calories while I am making my plate!
  • And last but not least, I try my hardest to be the best I can be for her:

Mini Cupcake keeps me grounded and reminds me what is truly important: stop and take the time to sit and watch The Powerpuff Girls with her!

Have a Happy Holidays to my fellow bloggers and readers celebrating today. I'll be back!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

NARS 2011 Holiday Collection...for Miss Omni Media

Hey Darlins!

I wanted to share my write-up and thoughts on NARS' 2011 Holiday Collection - Modern Kabuki.

I really, really want this set:

Because you guys know that I really, REALLY need more eye pencils! HA

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Special Delivery!

YAY - this is one of my favorite packages receiving in the mail:

I snagged a bottle of one of the limited edition re-issued shade, ANNE

Gorgeous, isn't it? Anne is like a golden olive-brown with fine gold, pink glitter. This was from the Real Housewives of Tudor Fall 2010 collection. I passed this up the first time and I'm so glad I picked up when Ms. Ji Baek kindly brought it back for us RBL fanatics!

Now I just wished I picked up one of the Holiday shades. I guess I'll have to wait till those are brought back again. I'll be back with manicure photos.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I HEART MAC: My Go-To Neutral Eye Shadows

You know those days when you don't want to put your makeup on but you have to because you'll scare anyone in your path? I turn to these shadows to help keep me presentable:

Woodwinked - antique gold, my lid color about 85% of the time.

(color is slightly off as I'm still learning how to adjust the color/exposure in my editing process)
Soba, soft golden brown - a strong workhorse that's my crease 90% of the time. I'm proud that I hit the pan it's like a badge of battlefield honor! I love this shade because it adds depth to an otherwise neutral eye and for dark charcoal smoky eyes this adds a bit of gradation between a dark liner, lid color and light, shimmery brow bone highlight.
And when all else fails, I turn to this unassuming shadow.

Arena, soft peach satin that I layer on top of a Paint Pot or use as a brow bone highlighter. This shade never disappoints and this is my second pan.

Here's my lineup:

(a true depiction of the colors on my NC42 arm)

Here's the obligatory EOTD shot using Woodwinked and Soba. I just realized that I didn't use Arena as my brow bone highlight shadow. Just trust me that it's magical!

Also used -  MAC Feline Kohl Power Eye Pencil, GA Eyes to Kill mascara, Anastasia Brow Express for Eyes and Brows - Brunette. 

MAC Eye shadows retail $15/USD and $11.50 for a pan refill (for customized palettes - which I recommend!).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I HEART MAC: My Favorite MAC Blush

Today, I want to share my all time favorite MAC blush - Gingerly.

Gingerly is a Bronze with some peachy tones in it. I wear this a lot in the summer for obvious reasons then I discovered the NARS South Beach Multiple and Gilda blush. Sadly, Gingerly took a backseat. It wasn't till I was digging around for product to build my stage makeup kit (more on that soon!).

I started to wear this again and I love the warmth this gives my skin in Winter. This is a sheertone blush but don't let that fool you - it packs a bit of punch if you're not careful. It blends easily if you need to buff it out with a bigger fluffier, kabuki style brush. It has pretty good staying power but I also use a primer underneath my foundation.

Here's a little snapshot of me and my Gingerly blush:

Gingerly is part of the permanent collection. It retails for $19.50/USD and can be found at MAC stores and department stores that carry the line. You can also find it online. I was lucky enough to find this at my local Company Store for $15. 

Monday, November 14, 2011

I HEART MAC: My Lip Lining Staples

The way how I make almost any lip color to work on my naturally dark pigmented lips - lip liner. My two favorite nude liners are Cream O'Spice Cremestick liner and Whirl Lip Pencil.

I have used other nudes in the past from other brands but I always come back to these two liners and when I am done I go back to the MAC counter and purchase two new ones.

Whirl is considered a dirty rose and Cream O'Spice is a neutral beige. I love Whirl underneath sheer pink blush or peach toned glosses. I love Cream O'Spice when I need to warm up cool tone lipsticks. I also use this underneath glosses to deepen glosses just like I use Whirl to add a warmer rose tone to beige lip colors.

Here's Edward Bess' Pure Impulse, a lovely neutral beige with just the slighted peach tone to it. This color is wonderful on lips that are naturally lightly tinted.

It's a bit flat on me...not too bad but not great either. My lips blend in with the rest of my face.

Now warmed up with Cream O'Spice. It becomes a warmer pink beige.

Here is Whirl liner on it's own. I really love Whirl, it's like a MLBB (my lips but better) shade. All I need is a light topping of my kiehl's lip treatment balm.

And here it is paired with Pure Impulse:

Okay, I apologize for some of the inconsistent exposures. I will say that Whirl gives Pure Impulse a more soft pink look whereas, Cream O'Spice makes it a deeper beige. Both altered versions work better with my skin tone, NC42.

I'm not just a fan of these two shades, I know quite a few of them. They apply easily and they are pretty inexpensive - Lip Pencil, $14 and Cremestick Liner, $14.50.

Whirl and Cream O'Spice are both part of the permanent collection and can be found at all MAC counters. If you're lucky like me, you could find the Cream O'Spice liner at The Company Store, Estee Lauder Brands Outlet stores.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

I HEART MAC: My Staples

One of my popular post is a MAC fail and it makes me feel a little guilty. MAC was there for me in the beginning back in 1994 where I was introduced to the brand by a little matte red lipstick named Russian Red. But along the way, the relationship soured.

It's no secret that I have a love/hate relationship with MAC - when it's good, it's an intense passion and when it's bad it's like that bad morning after feeling. You know, just intense awkward silence? One of my intentions with this blog is to give you, the reader, my honest opinion on products - good and bad.

This week I will focus on the basic MAC staples that have not failed me. The products that I find myself actually finishing and restocking.

I know this may not be fair because the first product I am going to share is actually a limited edition item.

LIMITED EDITION...who knew those two words together would incite an eye roll response. MAC is the leader when it comes to limited edition items in a collection. This phrase can cause a anxious feeling like: if I don't get this MSF powder, lipstick, pigment, shadow...etc...I will lose my mind! Who ever is in charge of  their Marketing department is pure genius!

Yes, I have been there before. I forgot what collection made me the most jaded in terms of trying to obtain a L.E. Mineralize Finish Powder but I do remember walking away intensely angry because the item I THOUGHT was promised to me was actually given away to another person. I guess waiting list don't always guarantee, of all things, blush!

So when I heard that my all time favorite (smudgy) black liner, Feline was going to make a comeback:

You know how you have 25 different pairs of black shoes in your closet that all serves a different purpose? Well I have different black liners that serve different purposes depending on my makeup mood that day or evening. For a more 60's doe eye, I turn to my NARS Larger than Life liner and if I want a more clean, thin defined line I use my MAC Blacktrack Fluidline.

Look how dark and sooty that is! I am not a huge fan of the popular MAC black liner, Smolder. I feel that just smudges a bit too much. Feline has a bit more holding power - it's not waterproof or long-lasting but it doesn't budge as much!

I love this liner when I want a sexy, almost slept in smudged black lined eye with a nude lid. This is when I try to channel my inner Angelina Jolie. I love when she does the smudgy black lined eye without any noticeable shadows.

Feline makes an appearance now and then. So when it does, you have to move quickly because it tends to sell out. It made a superstar cameo appearance in Cindy Sherman's collaboration collection this past Fall. This is the first time I bought two pencils at the same time. I have been holding on to a pencil from 2yrs ago and it has dried out. I didn't have the heart to toss it. Until now!

Not quite Angelina like but it's a good attempt, nontheless!
I believe it's still offered online, however I was super lucky to find mine at the MAC store location at the Hillsdale Mall in San Mateo, CA. It retails for $15/USD/0.05 oz.

Oh Feline, how could I ever be mad at you?