Authors Posts by Karen

Karen

184 POSTS 0 COMMENTS

The Best Pimple Spot Treatment

Hey Everyone!  I don’t know if y’all watch “The Voice”, but can I just gush over how much I love Gwen Stefani????  I have been a fan of the show and a faithful viewer since the beginning.  Gwen is one of my top 5 favorite chick singers, so you can imagine how stoked I was when it was announced that she would be a judge this season!  She is just so rad, I can’t get enough!!!  Love you Gwen!

So, onto a short and sweet post on what I consider to be the best pimple spot treatment out there:

picture-of-clean-clear-acne-spot-treatment

Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Spot Treatment

The Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Spot Treatment.  Fortunately, as I’ve gotten older, I don’t suffer from the “monthly” eruption of hormonal distress like I used to.  That’s not to say that it still doesn’t happen occasionally.  When it does, I apply a teeny bit of this stuff at the onset of a red/angry spot (when I wake up and before bed, after washing my face), and that horrible pimple is stopped dead in it’s tracks.  Even those awful cystic, under-the-skin, waiting-to-be-a-boil-on-your-face doozies!!

picture-of-clean-clear-acne-spot-treatment

Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Spot Treatment

As you can see from the label, it is a 2% salicylic acid medication.  I have tried other spot treatments that were the same formula in the past, but this one really does zap the zit before it appears for me.  I am one of the “100% of people showed clearer skin in just one day” people.  *A big stat to live up to – just sayin’*

It also doesn’t dry my skin out (you know, the flaky, white, crusty patches).  If you suffer from breakouts, or a yucky pimple here and there, I would definitely recommend giving this a try.

It is sold in drugstores and other major retailers.

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

My Wine Lipstick Picks

Hello my pretty people!  Before I get on to my wine lipstick picks, I want to share my new hair with you!

pic-of-purple-ombre-hair-color

My New Hair Color

Ta-da!!!!!

I decided I wanted to do an ombre lavender color.  I know it’s a bit bright right now, but it will definitely fade into the shade I want.  I’m calling it my mid-life crisis hairdo.  What do you think?

picture-of-my-wine-lipstick-picks

My Wine Lipstick Picks

Now onto the wine lipstick.  I don’t pay any attention to seasons when it comes to my makeup.  I will wear black nail polish in the summer and pink lipstick in the winter.  Such a non-conformist I am!  However, Fall is the time when deeper shades come into play for most people.  Here are three I am loving right now.

picture-of-my-wine-lipstick-picks

(Top to Bottom): L’Oreal Infallible Le Rouge Bold Bordeaux, Revlon Black Cherry, Bobbi Brown Art Stick Cassis

Swatches:

picture-of-my-wine-lipstick-picks

(Top to Bottom): L’Oreal Infallible Le Rouge Bold Bordeaux, Revlon Black Cherry, Bobbi Brown Art Stick Cassis

First up, L’Oreal Infallible Le Rouge in Bold Bordeaux:

picture-of-loreal-infallible-le-rouge-bold-bordeaux-closeup

L’Oreal Infallible Le Rouge Bold Bordeaux

These are probably my favorite drugstore lipsticks.  They do not have the usual strong fragrance that most people find annoying in the traditional L’Oreal lippies.  It has a slight scent, but you really have to put it up to your nose to detect it.

picture-of-loreal-infallible-le-rouge-bold-bordeaux

L’Oreal Infallible Le Rouge Bold Bordeaux

They apply smoothly with a long wear time and is non-drying.  This particular color is a bit on the sheer side.  Perfect if you don’t want a vampy lip.

Next up, Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Black Cherry:

picture-of-revlon-black-cherry-lipstick-closeup

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick Black Cherry

You really can’t go wrong with good ‘ol Revlon lipsticks.  This one has no fragrance either.

picture-of-revlon-black-cherry-lipstick

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick Black Cherry

Black Cherry is more on the opaque side.  It is super comfortable to wear, and applies very easily.  It does require a bit more touching up throughout the day.  It looks like a very dark purple in the tube, but it applies as a true wine on me.

Last, but not least, is the Bobbi Brown Art Stick in Cassis:

I LOVE these Art Sticks!  They are a good sized, chubby wooden pencil.  A sharpener is also included in the box.

picture-of-bobbi-brown-art-stick-cassis-closeup

Bobbi Brown Art Stick Cassis

These also apply super smoothly, and really last throughout the day.  Very comfortable to wear as well.  I really like how easy lip pencils/crayons are to use.

picture-of-bobbi-brown-art-stick-cassis

Bobbi Brown Art Stick Cassis

Though the pencil looks like a deep wine color, it is more like a russet/wine on me.  Great for every day.

So there you have it.  I hope everyone has had a great weekend.  Stay tuned for my hair color progression.

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Marc Jacobs Cabaret and Shooting Stars

Hello beautiful people!  It’s been a weird week for me, and I’m behind in my blogging schedule – ugh.  I was lucky enough to snag the limited edition Marc Jacobs “Love and Lust” 1000 point reward from Sephora (way back when), so I wanted to share my thoughts on the two lip products that comprised the duo with you.

 

picture-of-marc-jacobs-cabernet-shooting stars

Marc Jacobs Cabaret Lip Gel/Shooting Stars Lip Vinyl

I think this was one of Sephora’s best perks.  It consisted of a full sized Marc Jacobs LoveMarc Lip Gel in “Cabaret” and Lust For Lacquer Lip Vinyl in “Shooting Stars”.

picture-of-marc-jacobs-cabaret-shooting stars

Marc Jacobs Cabaret Lip Gel and Shooting Stars Lip Vinyl

Although it was “Limited Edition” only for Rouge VIP’s, it is now available on the Sephora website.

picture-of-marc-jacobs-cabaret-swatch-shooting-stars-swatch

Marc Jacobs Shooting Stars(top) and Cabaret(bottom) Swatches

Let me just say, I ADORE Marc Jacobs’ gloss!!!  (If you’ve been with me, you know I am not a fan of lip gloss).  This is the first MJ gloss I’ve ever tried.

picture-of-marc-jacobs-lust-for-lacquer-lip-vinyl-shooting-stars1

Marc Jacobs Lust For Lacquer Shooting Stars

It looks sparkly in the tube, but fear not.  Sephora describes this gloss as a “shimmering raisin berry”.

picture-of-marc-jacobs-lust-for-lacquer-lip-vinyl-shooting-stars

Marc Jacobs Lust For Lacquer Shooting Stars

This gloss is honestly like “vinyl”.  It is extremely pigmented/opaque, super shiny on the lips, and comfortable to wear.  And it is plumping (i.e. – tingly when you apply).

picture-of-marc-jacobs-lust-for-lacquer-lip-vinyl-shooting-stars-closeup

Marc Jacobs Lust For Lacquer Shooting Stars

Love, love, love this gloss.  It wore about 2-3 hours (as most glosses), but faded evenly into a really nice nude.  It was not sticky, gummy – just FABULOUS!

picture-of-marc-jacobs-lust-for-lacquer-shooting-stars

Marc Jacobs Lust For Lacquer Lip Vinyl Shooting Star

I am also a huge fan of Marc Jacobs Beauty Lovemarc Lip Gels.

picture-of-marc-jacobs-cabaret-lip-gel

Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel Cabaret

How gorgeous is this?  Sephora describes this as a “Deepest Cranberry”.

picture-of-marc-jacobs-lip-gel-cabaret-closeup

Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel Cabaret

A bit pink on me….

picture-of-marc-jacobs-lip-gel-cabaret

Marc Jacobs Lovemark Lip Gel Cabaret

It is more “berry” on me than “cranberry”.

But I love the pigmentation/wear – everything I’ve always loved about Marc Jacobs Beauty!

Oh, and I did a little something to my hair color.  Stay tuned!!!

Again, thanks for reading!!!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Make Up For Ever Star Powder

Hello my lovely people!  I have been trying to write this post all evening, but have been distracted by the all of the exciting football games going on!  All in all, it was a GREAT day for my Dawgs.  So I am going to jump right into my review of the incredible Make Up For Ever Star Powder.  I don’t even know where to begin with this baby.

picture-of-makeup-forever-star-powder-white-orange

Make Up Forever Star Powder in White/Orange

Star Powder is a super, super, finely milled shimmer powder that can be used as an eye shadow, highlighter – even on top of lipstick.  Wet or dry.  So versatile, there is really no single way to use it.

picture-of-makeup-forever-star-powder-white-orange

MUFE Star Powder in White/Orange

They come in a variety of colors from bright to neutral.  I chose White/Orange, shade 940.  It comes in a tiny jar with a sifter to dispense the product.

picture-of-makeup-forever-star-powder-white-orange

MUFE Star Powder in Orange/White

You are probably looking at this plain ole powder thinking it looks like nothing special.  Maybe even kinda boring.  Well, hold on to your underpants!

picture-of-makeup-forever-star-powder-white-orange

Make Up Forever Star Powder in White/Orange

Can you see that teeny bit of iridescence towards the top of the jar?

picture-of-makeup-forever-star-powder-white-orange

MUFE Star Powder in White/Orange

This is what that unassuming flour looking stuff does when it hits the light!  I’m not sure about the other shades, but this particular one is like a duo-chrome.

picture-of-makeup-forever-star-powder-white-orange-swatch

MUFE Star Powder White/Orange Swatch

I typically use this as an inner corner highlight (and on my  inner lower lash line).  When you look at it straight on, it is indeed a white shimmer.

picture-of-makeup-forever-star-powder-white-orange-swatch

MUFE Star Powder Orange/White Swatch

When it hits a different angle of light, it becomes this gorgeous shade.  Though it is White “Orange”, it is a really peachy/golden color on me.

picture-of-makeup-forever-star-powder-white-orange-swatch

MUFE Star Powder White/Orange Swatch

The left is the powder swatched directly on my arm, the right over primer.  I realize I tried so hard to capture the “orange” shade, I totally neglected the “white” part.  But that was too uninteresting to me.

I think the arm swatches are a more realistic representation of the Star Powder.  It only takes a teeny bit to get a beautiful finish.  The swatches on my fingertips are more than you would ever need to use.  I was just trying to capture the gorgeous iridescence.  I am planning to play with this as an eye shadow and cheek highlighter.  Though it has “orange” in the name, I think it would look beautiful on all complexions.

Have you ever tried a Star Powder?  How do you like them?

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Prescription Skincare

Hello Everyone!!!  Looks like it is officially “Pumpkin Everything” season.  I, for one, am happy for the cooler temps.  You can call me on this when I start bitching about how cold it is four months from now!!!!

I am pretty fanatical about skincare.  As much as I love playing around/experimenting with makeup, I hardly ever deviate from my skin regiment.  I just realized today that I have been using some of my products for over ten years.  Hello Karen?  Maybe you need to come in out of the darkness, and embrace some new innovations.  Especially after I read my girl Bubbly Michelle’s post on her go-to skincare item.  I do, however, want to give some love to my favorite prescription skincare products, as I’m sure they will still be my faithful staples as I wander through all the new advances in making your skin beautiful.

picture-of-Prescription Skincare

Prescription Skincare

I have been using Obagi Medical products for years.  They do not require a written “prescription”, but are only available in physician’s offices (dermatlolgists, plastic surgeons, medical day spas, primary care physicians).  You cannot purchase from theirwebsite either, as their products can only be dispensed by a doctor.  They warn against purchasing online, as you don’t know if you are getting the real product or counterfeit.

picture-of-obagi-elastiderm-eye-treatment-cream

Obagi ELASTIderm Eye Treatment Cream

The Obagi ELASTIderm Eye Treatment Cream is amaze.  It restores and firms the entire eye area, especially the “crepe-iness” that happens under your eyes as you age.  I love this stuff, and I don’t think I will ever replace it.  It also helps tighten up the upper lids.  I use this in the evening.

picture-of-obagi-elastiderm-eye-complete-complex-serum

Obagi ELASTIderm Eye Complete Complex Serum

This serum is everything the cream is, but in a light, almost gel-like formula.  It has a roller-ball applicator that is oh-so-cooling-under-eye, and helps combat under eye puffiness with the addition of caffeine in the formula.  My morning go-to.  As the weather gets colder, I do use the serum in conjunction with the cream before bed.

I have only been diligent with sunscreen on my face for the last fifteen years.  Until then, I was all about getting a “healthy” tan on my face, and baked my face unmercifully.  Paying the price now.

picture-of-obagi-nu-derm-sunscreen

Obagi Nu Derm Sunscreen

I had a pretty big patch of melasma appear on my face on both sides of my upper cheek bones and along my jawline – thanks to abusing my skin.  I ended up going to a plastic surgeon a year ago and getting Fraxel laser treatment to correct the hyper-pigmentation (three sessions).  After my procedure, he recommended that I only use the Obagi Nu Derm Sunscreen, as your face is hyper-sensitive to the sun (considering the first layer of your skin is burned off).  Let me tell you, this sunscreen is the bomb!  It readily absorbs into the skin, has a matte finish, and does not not make your face white.  I highly recommend it if you get laser treatment, but now that my skin has healed, my Neutrogena sun screen works just as well.

Last, but not least, my beloved Renova.  I did not start using a true “anti-aging” product until my 30s.  This one has served me well.  I would recommend if you are in your late 20s, as now is a good time to start.  Renova is a gentle retionoid, known as Tretinoin, and I have used the .02% for years.  It is a wonder cream that (used consistently) will smooth the surface of the skin, diminish fine lines/wrinkles, and helps create cell turn-over, that results in fresher, younger looking skin.  I may need to see about boosting up to the .05% once I use this tube up.  It is really gentle, and you only  need a pea-sized drop for your entire face.  Squeeze out the said amount into your palm, and use your right finger tips to tap HALF the pea sized product onto half of your face.  Same with the remaining half, but with your left hand for the other size of your face.  Just tap, tap, tap it into your skin until it is absorbed, then rub your fingers across your face.   You can use it around the eye area (not directly underneath the eyes).  Blot a tissue across your face after, and in any product is found on the tissue, you’ve used too much.  A teeeny bit goes a long way for fabulous results.

picture-of-renova-cream-review

Renova Cream

Renova is an anti-aging product that does actually require a prescription – you pick it up at the drugstore.  It is the gentle-est retinoid, and I have been using this for overtwenty years.  I know this tube looks awful, and almost all used up, but I swear, I have another year’s worth of use from this baby.  Again, you use the tiniest drop.

That is the one complaint I have about prescription skincare.  Yes, it is expensive, but you only need to use the teeeeeniest bit.  And they put it in such a big package.  I wish they made it in increments for 3 months use, making it more affordable, and not expiring before you finish.

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

A Few Red Lipsticks – High End

Hey my lovely people!  I have been watching college football all day long and lost track of time.  Now that my air has been fixed (aaaah, sweet relief!!!!) I was able to finish my review of a few red lipsticks – high end.  Though a red lip is not limited to seasons, I have been busting out all of my reds in honor of Georgia games (our colors are red and black), and wanted to share some of my favorites.  This is a follow up to my drugstore picks.

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-high-end

A Few Red Lipsticks – High End

I think anyone can rock a red lip.  On minimal makeup days I conceal the icky spots on my face, fill in my brows, slap some crimson on my lips, and I’m good to go (or so I think).

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-high-end

A Few Red Lipsticks – High End

My picks are Too Faced Melted Berry Lipstick, Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in F-Bomb, and MAC Viva Glam I.  Thanks to my friend Dani for the Too Faced and UD lipsticks from our beauty swap.  How gorgeous are these babies???

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-high-end

(L-R) Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick F-Bomb, Too Faced Melted Berry Lipstick, MAC Viva Glam I

Swatches:

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-high-end-swatches

Swatches (top to bottom): Too Faced Melted Berry, Urban Decay F-Bomb, MAC Viva Glam I

My swatches suck.  You can tell the size of the lipstick by the way it transfers to my arm.  I try to make them all uniform, but I don’t have a steady hand.  Something to work on……

Here we go!

Too Faced Melted Berry Liquified Long Wear Lipstick:

This is my first Melted lipstick.  As the name implies, it is a liquid lipstick.  I love that there is a felt tip to apply the lip color rather than it come straight out of the tube.  Pleasant surprise.

picture-of-too-faced-melted-berry-closeup

Too Faced Melted Berry Lipstick

This is more of a berry/red.  It is so pigmented, vibrant, comfortable to wear, and I just LOVE it.  I will definitely be adding more of these to my collection.  It has a sweet, candy scent, but you can’t smell it once you apply.  This lasted about 4 hours on me (eating/drinking) and faded evenly.  Did not dry my lips out at all.  L-O-V-E.

picture-of-too-faced-melted-berry-lipstick

Too Faced Melted Berry Liquified Long Wear Lipstick

Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in F-Bomb:

I think the UD Revolution formula is one of the best.  Very pigmented, easy to wear, and very comfortable as well.  Plus, I love the name!!!!  I have a bit of a potty mouth.  F-Bomb is my favorite adjective.

picture-of-urban-decay-revolution-lipstick-f-bomb-closeup

Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick F-Bomb

This is my favorite “true” blue/red.  Very Gwen Stefani (I LOVE her, and can’t wait to see her on “The Voice” this season!!!!!!).  It is a bit on the glossy side, but lasts.  I do have to touch up after eating/drinking.  It fades evenly, and is not drying at all.  No discernible scent.

picture-of-urban-decay-revolution-lipstick-f-bomb

Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick F-Bomb

MAC Viva Glam I (matte):

My favorite lipstick formula hands down is a MAC matte (especially Retro!).  I know many people find the formula drying, but I love it because it lasts a long time.  I drink a LOT of water during the day (from a bottle, as I don’t sit at a desk allowing a straw), and my mattes hang with me throughout the workday.

picture-of-mac-viva-glam-I-lipstick-closeup

MAC Viva Glam I Lipstick

Viva Glam I is more of a brick-red.

picture-of-mac-viva-glam-I-lipstick

MAC Viva Glam I Lipstick

I love my Viva Glam I, but I think the color is very similar to MAC Dubonnet.

picture-of-mac-amplified-creme-lipstick-dubonnet

MAC Amplified Creme Lipstick Dubonnet

This photo is from an earlier blog review of Dubonnet.  I think the only difference is in the formula.  Love them both though!

Again, thanks for reading!!! kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Becca Wild Honey and Flowerchild Mineral Blush Review

Hello my peeps!  My air conditioning got fixed yesterday!  I have had the windows open 24/7 since Friday, so the pups heard every single teeny, tiny sound that was going on outside.  Especially during the middle of the night.  Of course they had to alert me of the dangerous falling leaf outside by barking their fool heads off at 2 AM.  Needless to say, I got a good nights sleep last night now that the windows are closed!  Now back to the usual routine, and my Becca Wild Honey and Flowerchild Mineral Blush Review!

pic-of-becca-wild-honey-flowerchild-mineral-blush

Becca Wild Honey and Flowerchild Mineral Blush

Becca is one of my favorite makeup lines.  I don’t think I’ve ever tried anything from them that I absolutely didn’t love.  They also created one of my holy grail items!

picture-of-becca-wild-honey-flowerchild-mineral-blush

Becca Wild Honey (bottom) and Flowerchild (top) Mineral Blush

These blushes are absolutely heavenly!!  Yes, these are the shades made extremely popular (and constantly unavailable) by Jaclyn Hill.  It amazes me how the mere mention of a product by Jaclyn on her YouTube channel unleashes such a fury that items sell out overnight, websites crash, and people go berserk trying to get those items.  You go Jaclyn!!!

picture-of-becca-wild-honey-flowerchild-mineral-blush

Becca Wild Honey and Flowerchild Mineral Blush

These blushes are finely milled, and look so beautiful on!  They appear to have a good bit of shimmer in the pan, but once applied, they melt into the skin, leaving a nice wash of color as well as a sheer highlight (no disco ball shine).  I think the magic is in that it is a mineral formula.

picture-of-becca-wild-honey-mineral-blush

Becca Wild Honey Mineral Blush

I don’t think you could go wrong with any of the color offerings, but my favorite is Wild Honey – a warm, peachy, golden formula that is absolutely gorgeous!!!  I think it is awesome for light medium to dark skin tones.  If you are very fair, it may be more suitable as a bronzer.  Though it does look a bit orange in this photo, trust me, it applies a lovely peach with gold highlights.  L-O-V-E.

picture-of-becca-flowerchild-mineral-blush

Becca Flowerchild Mineral Blush

AAAAHHH – maybe I spoke too soon.  How beautiful is this Flowerchild shade????  It is a warm, peachy-pink, also with golden flecks.  I actually think it is very similar to NARS Orgasm, but more on the peachy side – on me, the NARS is a bit more pink.  I think this shade is universally flattering on all skin tones.  I personally think Flowerchild is better suited for my dark-medium/olive complexion than Orgasm.  (That was a weird sentence).

Swatches (no primer):

picture-of-becca-wild-honey-flower-child-mineral-blush-swatch

Becca Wild Honey (R) and Flowerchild (L) Swatches

As you can see, no super shimmer.  Just gorgeous pigmented loveliness!

picture-of-becca-wild-honey-flower-child-mineral-blush-swatch

Becca Wild Honey (top) and Flowerchild (bottom) swatches

From a distance.

picture-of-becca-wild-honey-flower-child-mineral-blush-swatch

Becca Wild Honey (R) and Flowerchild (L) Swatches

Up close and personal.

I am so happy Becca now has their own website.  You an also purchase from Sephora.

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Remembering My First Makeup Products

Hello my lovely ones!  Our air conditioning unit crapped out Friday night (of course!).  We won’t have a technician here until Monday to diagnose what is going on, so we are going to attempt to muddle struggle through the weekend.  Being in Georgia, our temps are still pretty warm (90s).  So, until we get some central air circulating up in here, I will not be wearing any makeup.    I have reveiws scheduled that don’t require the presence of my gorgeous mug, plus  I have been wanting to write a nostalgic post remembering my first makeup products.  So here we go!

picture-of-max-factor-green-apple-cologne

Max Factor Green Apple Cologne (Photo credit Michelle Colvin)

My very first venture into the beauty world was this “Green Apple” cologne from none other than Max Factor.  I had the frosted apple bottle.  Much to my Mother’s chagrin, I thought this was the most heavenly, chi-chi perfume that ever existed.  I think I actually went through two bottles of this stuff.  It was my first “big girl” fragrance after years of the “Tinkerbell” makeup/fragrance kits from my childhood (she kind of looked more Holly Hobbie than Disney’s Tink).  This paved the way to the “Love’s Baby Soft” obsession.

picture-of-clairol-crazy-curl-curling-iron

Clairol Crazy Curl Curling Iron (Photo Credit Ebay Seller)

Now that I was smelling like a Granny Smith Apple, I felt the need to do something about my hair.  Enter the Clairol “Crazy Curl” Curling Iron.  It was bright green, just like my favorite fragrance.  The barrel was about as thick as a jumbo crayon.  The “red” dot by the clamp would turn “black” when your wand was ready.  You put water in the cap on top of the wand, and after you wound your hair around the barrel, you pressed it down to “steam” yourself into some serious Farrah Fawcett waves.

picture-of-farrah-hair

Farrah Fawcett Hair (Photo Credit Beautybombshells.com)

Um, no.  The “Crazy Curl” sucked.  I didn’t know it was 500% too small to give me Farrah flips.  I was so disappointed that my magic wand didn’t do the job that I begged my Mom to get me some Farrah Fawcett Shampoo & Conditioner.  In fact, Farrah had a very successful hair care line back in the day.  Yes, that would get me those famous angel wings.

picture-of-farrah-fawcett-shampoo-conditioner

Farrah Fawcett Shampoo & Conditioner (Photo CreditNancy Bortz)

Sad to report, it did not work.  I did diligently use the Farrah products, in the hope that  I would wake up one morning and have a miraculous Farrah-hair day (again, nope.  No dice).  And Creme Rinse?  I reckon that was de rigueur back then.  I can actually still remember the fragrance.  It was very pleasant, and to my early teen self, very Farrah.

picture-of-Bonne-Bell-Ten-O-Six

Bonne Bell Ten O Six Lotion (Photo Credit Ebay Seller)

So, my skin had to be ultra perfect, and Bonne Bell Ten-O-Six Lotion was the go to product.  I mean, everyone beautiful was using it for impeccable skin!  After washing my face, I would apply this miracle worker on a cotton ball, and go over my face.  I rejoiced in the dark crud that clung to my puffy white fluff.  Yes, I was well on my way to a flawless complexion.  I can also still smell the scent of pure Isopropyl Alcohol that I was rubbing all over my face twice a day, at age 15.  I was very fortunate to not have acne, or any consistent breakouts. ��But the thought of my young self putting that on my face just kills me now!  And I didn’t wear makeup then!

I was not allowed to wear makeup until high school (9th grade).  And only foundation, blush, mascara, and gloss.  My Mom’s philosophy was to spend the most you can afford on foundation, as it lays directly on your face.  Any other cosmetic can be whatever (I still happen to embrace that fundamental).  So she took me to the Clinique counter (yes, they had them back then!!!!), and got me my first foundation.  It was the most basic, light, hypoallergenic foundation they had.  And I wore that exact foundation for many, many years.

By my Junior year, Mom relaxed and said I could start using makeup on my EYES!

picture-of-flame-glo-eyeshadow

Flame Glo Eye Shadows (Photo Credit Mariesa Huthwaite)

Yeah, the Flame Glo (drugstore) purple palette was my go-to all through high school.  I also used their eye shadow crayon.  I pretty much rocked a purple eye all through school.

picture-of-maybelline-eye-color-styler-pencils

Maybelline Eye Color Style Pencils (Photo Credit Flickr)

Sorry this is so blurry, but the Maybelline Eye Color Styler Pencil in Midnite Teal (featured on this ad) was the only liner I used.  So purple eye, teal liner.  Yessss!

picture-of-maxi-lipstick

Maxi Lipstick (Photo credit Eileen Theresa)

“Maxi” was an off-shoot of Max Factor designed to appeal to the younger makeup buyer.  I had a ton of their lipsticks.  My favorite was a cinnamon colored, frosty thing.  And a purple colored, frosty thing.

Last, but not least, this:

picture-of-sun-in

Sun In (Photo Credit Skooldays.com)

Worst thing ever.  I remember trying to lighten my dark hair to something other than what it was.  My Mom would have never allowed me to color/highlight my hair at 16.  I took the picture of this photo with my phone (under indoor crappy light), so that is not pixie dust sprinkled across the top of my head.

picture-of-me-in the-11-grade

Me in the 11th grade!

Yes, that is my poor hair with an attempted dye-job with Sun-In (aka Bozo-the-Clown orange chunky highlights).  In case you were wondering, I really wanted Brooke Shields’ eyebrows.

picture-of-me-my-senior-year

My Senior Year

Yours Truly with the beginning of what would become bigger and bigger hair (it was the 80s).  I spy some Sun-In orange remnant.

It is amazing how many makeup brands come and go.  I’ve been at it for a long time.  So you Veterans will know where I’m coming from.  My younger girls, let your Mom read this.  She’ll get a chuckle.  Or maybe your Grandmother!

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

A Few Red Lipsticks – Drugstore

Hello there beautiful people!  Before I begin writing about something as frivolous as beauty, I would like to take a moment to remember my fellow Americans who perished in the Twin Towers on this fateful day in 2001.  While in New York with my Aussie friends this summer, we visited the 911 Memorial and Museum.  My gals from halfway around the world were just as moved as I was taking it all in.  It was a tragedy felt worldwide.  As I fought back tears, I came away with a profound respect for the amazing people of New York City;  banding together through devastation, fueled by love for their community; and rebuilding in spite of the obstacles.  And pride for my great country – The United States of America.  She is mighty, she is strong, and her people persevere.  We Must Never Forget.  I can only wish for peace during this time of turmoil in other parts of the world.

As summer melts into fall (actually kicking and screaming here in Georgia), I think red lipstick is a perfect transition shade.  Of course, I wear red lips all year around, regardless of the season.  But for my people who are encountering cooler weather, and want to add a bit of color without going over the top dark, here are A Few Red Lipsticks – Drugstore!

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-drugstore

A Few Red Lipsticks Drugstore

I have chosen L’Oreal Infallible Lipstick in “Ravishing Red”, Maybelline Color Sensation Vivids in “On Fire Red”, and Flower Beauty “Get to the Poinsettia”.

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-drugstore

(L-R) L’Oreal, Maybelline, Flower

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-drugstore

(L-R) Maybelline On Fire Red, Flower Get To The Poinsettia, L’Oreal Ravishing Red

The Maybelline Color Sensational Vivids in “On Fire Red” is a true blue/red.  As with all the Color Sensation lipsticks, it is very glossy, shiny, and comfortable to wear.  A small hint of vanilla scent.  Nothing overwhelming.

The Flower Beauty Kiss Stick Velvet Lip Color in “Get To The Poinsettia” is more of a subdued orange/red for those of you who may not care for a true “red”.  “Velvet” is a good description, as it is not a true matte, nor glossy.  It is almost like a “powder” in application.  It is also very comfortable to wear, and has no discernible fragrance.  Flower Beauty is a creation of Drew Barrymore, and exclusive to Walmart and walmart.com.

I am a huge fan of the L’Oreal Infallible line (my absolute favorite drugstore lipstick!) – this shade is “Ravishing Red” (also a blue/red).  This is more of a matte finish, comfortable to wear, and long lasting without drying.  Big note – it has no smell – nothing like the Colour Riche that many people find offensive.  Mine has been well used, so please excuse the nub.

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-drugstore

A Few Red Lipsticks Drugstore

As you can see, the Maybelline and L’Oreal shades look very similar.  The difference is in the formula.

picture-of-a-few-red-lipsticks-drugstore-swatches

Top to Bottom: Maybelline On Fire Red, Flower Get to the Poinsettia, L’Oreal Ravishing Red Swatches

Swatches melting a bit, as it was 87 degrees here in Georgia when I went outside to photograph :(

First up:  Maybelline Color Sensational Vivids Lipstick in “On Fire Red”.

*I have had allergy attacks from hell for the last week and a half, leaving my skin raw, from under my nose to the top of my lip, and sides, and under my lips, from my nose running non-stop.*  My Aussie PaPaw cream is remedying this horrid situation.  But bear with me.  Was going to leave the closeups out, but what the hell.

picture-of-maybelline-on-fire-red-lip-swatch

Maybelline On Fire Red Lip Swatch

I LOVE this color.  It is a beautiful fire engine red.  However, even on a good day, I like to use this one with a clear lip liner (or red).  Since the formula is so silky and soft, it does tend to bleed outside of my lip lines.  Plus I had the added crusty lip from my allergies.

picture-of-maybelline-on-fire-red-lipstick

Maybelline On Fire Red Lipstick

So beautiful and pigmented.  Since it is a glossy formula, I get 3 hours tops on wear after eating/drinking.  But it is very comfortable, and your lips feel very moisturized.  The bleeding may be due to the darker color, or the fact that I am just plain old, regardless of my allergies.

Flower Beauty Kiss Stick Velvet Lip Color in “Get To The Poinsettia”.

picture-of-flower-get-to-the-poinsetta-lip-swatch

Flower Get To The Poinsettia Lip Swatch

To me, this is an orange/red.  I prefer more of a blue/red, but I do like it.

picture-of-flower-get-to-the-poinsetta-lipstick

Flower Get To The Poinsettia Lipstick

I do love this color as an alternate for my “really red” hues.  The formula was interesting.  It applied very smooth without skipping or pulling, but it was not as pigmented as I’d hoped.  It sort of reminded me of a “grease pencil”.  If I have to explain, you don’t know.  It did last several hours, after eating and drinking, and it faded into a nice even color.

L’Oreal Infallible Lipstick in “Ravishing Red”.

picture-of-loreal-ravishing-red-lip-swatch

L’Oreal Ravishing Red Lip Swatch

Again, the L’Oreal Infallible Lipstick line is my favorite drug store lipstick!  (The actual tube, not the two-step kit, or gloss – just the traditional lipstick).

picture-of-loreal-ravishing-red-lipstick

L’Oreal Ravishing Red Lipstick

This does have a bit of a sheen, but it lasts through all of my copious water drinking, and eating lunch.  Then I have to reapply.  It is long lasting, but not drying,

My face is healing every day from my allergies, and I haven’t had any new attacks (*knock on wood*).  So, stay tuned for a few red lipsticks – high-end, next post!

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Wet n Wild Sun Set To See Eyeshadow

Hey everyone!  Today and the past weekend involved redundant errands.  Why can’t I find ONE store that has everything I need?  Target is one of my favorite stores.  It is my go-to for everyday staples (from toilet paper to laundry detergent), and I love shopping there, as they always have such cool stuff!  But there are two or three items they don’t stock that require a separate trip to Walmart (can’t get it all there either).  Today was the Walmart trip (why, Target, why???).  I noticed they had a huge display outside of all things Fall – gigantic pots of Mums, scarecrows, etc.  Hard to get into the spirit of Fall when it’s still 80 degrees and HOT here in Georgia.  Those poor Mums on display will be obliterated by tomorrow.

So, as hard as I find it to get into the spirit of Autumn, I did notice that my Wet n Wild Sun Set To See Eye shadow might be a great segue!!

picture-of-wet-n-wild-sun-set-to-see-eye-shadow

Wet n Wild Sun-Set to See Trio

Wet n Wild released some Limited Edition Trios late summer.  Most of the trios were bright, happy, end of summer shades.  Out of all the trios, I loved the one with the orange shade!  Not surprising, as y’all know I lean towards warm colors.

picture-of-wet-n-wild-sun-set-to-see-eye-shadow

Wet n Wild Sun-Set to See Eye Shadow

And this trio did not disappoint!!  To be honest with you, I have never bought a Wet n Wild eye shadow!  I love their lipsticks, but never paid much attention to the shadows.  Shame on me, because at $3 a trio, they are a steal!

Swatches below are over primer:

picture-of-wet-n-wild-sun-set-to-see-swatches

Wet n Wild Sun-Set to See Swatches

The “Browbone” shade to me appeared to be matte.  The “Crease” and “Eyelid” shade were more like a satin matte. But the pigmentation!!!!

picture-of-wet-n-wild-sun-set-to-see-swatches

Wet n Wild Sun Set To See Eye Shadow Swatches

I actually used this trio on it’s own this past week (without any other colors), and loved it.

If you love warm tones, go to your local drugstore, find this baby, and take it home with you.

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

OCC Lip Tar Matte Lydia

Hello Everyone!  I am so sad that we lost another comedic genius – Joan Rivers.  I cannot even imagine what it was like for her to break into the male dominated world of comedy back in the day where a woman’s place was in the kitchen.  She was bawdy and no subject was off limits.  She would tell it like it is.  My heart breaks for her daughter Melissa, as she has now lost her last parent.  Joan was all about looking good, and made no bones about the plastic surgery she endured to keep up her appearance.  So in honor of Joan, let’s talk makeup!  OCC Lip Tar Matte Lydia, to be exact.  RIP Joan.  Hope you and Robin are cracking people up wherever you are.

picture-of-occ-lip-tar-matte-lydia

OCC Lip Tar Matte Lydia

The lip tar comes in a plastic box with a handy dandy lip brush.  Yes, it is lipstick on a tube.  This is my first OCC lip tar in the matte formula.  I got two shades when the lip tars first came out, and honestly didn’t rush out to buy more.  But, hey, I love matte lip products, so I thought I’d give this one a go!

picture-of-occ-lip-tar-matte-lydia

OCC Lip Tar Matte Lydia

I was in Sephora a few weeks ago, and saw this gorgeous shade in an OCC “In Your Face Kit”, which included the lip tar, lip pencil, and a multi-purpose cream pigment.  I had no interest in the other products (nor did I want to pay the price for the kit).  My store did not have it in stock so I ordered it online.  It looked like the most beautiful purple/violet loveliness.

picture-of-occ-lip-tar-matte-lydia-closeup

OCC Lip Tar Matte Lydia Closeup

OCC describes Lydia as a “darkroom plum” (???).  Again, to me, it is purple/violet loveliness.  I do recommend using the lip brush to apply.  A teeny bit goes a long way, and if you try to apply it with your fingers, it would be an utter disaster.  The formula is very runny (as the original), and hard to control without brush intervention.

picture-of-occ-lip-tar-matte-lydia-swatch

OCC Lip Tar Matte Lydia Swatch

I really don’t consider this a “matte” formula.  It has a bit of sheen to it….

picture-of-occ-lip-tar-matte-lydia-lip-swatch

OCC Lip Tar Matte Lydia Lip Swatch

I’m such a Debbie-Downer.  I don’t know why arm swatches look so different than what shows up on my lips???

Honestly, I see no difference in the “original” formula versus the “matte”.

picture-of-occ-lip-tar-matte-lydia

OCC Lip Tar Matte Lydia

Does this look like a matte lipstick to you?

The formula has the same wonderful peppermint scent as the original.  It was very hydrating and didn’t dry my lips out.  However, I only got about two hours wear (no drinking/eating).  As you an see from the photos, it does not appear matte at all.  I did experience some feathering.  Using a clear lip liner took care of that.

I do love the color, but I feel a bit let down by the formulation.  Have you tried the OCC mattes?  What was your experience?

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

August Glossybox

Hello my lovelies!  I recently received my August Glossybox, and as I was about to open it up, I thought I’d grab my camera and do an unboxing for you.  Speaking of cameras, I am not sure what is up with mine?  It has been a bit wonky lately on focusing.  It is crystal clear in some areas, and flat out blurry in others.  I have tried various settings, but to no avail.  So please excuse the weirdo photos about to follow.  I was actually not going to do this post because of the pictures, but decided to press on.

picture-of-august-glossybox

August Glossybox

Glossybox is a beauty subscription service that features five luxury products each month.  The boxes range from $18-$21, depending on the plan you chose (free shipping).  I love that the items are always deluxe samples, with a full size thrown in.  This box was their three year anniversary, hence the “3” sticker.  They offer their boxes all over the world, including the UK, France, Korea, and Japan.

picture-of-august-glossybox

August Glossybox

This is what I opened up.  What is in there??!

picture-of-august-glossybox-contents

August Glossybox Contents

Let’s go through it!  I have not tried any of these products, so I am quoting the accompanying product description card with an *.

picture-of-glossybox-uberliss-shampoo-conditioner

Uberliss Hydrating Shampoo & Conditioner

*Uberliss Hydrating Shampoo & Conditioner ($23.90 shampoo/$25.90 conditioner, full size).  Sulfate-free and chock full of natural ingredients.*  Has a very light, pleasant fragrance.

picture-of-glossybox-lamoon-beauty-polish-eyeko-skinny-eyeliner

Glossybox Lamoon Beauty Nail Lacquer/Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner

*Lamoon Beauty Precision Nail Lacquer ($5.95 full size). 4-free and cruelty free.*  The polish I received is “Raspberry Beret”.  Okay.  I love Prince.  And the berry (my maiden name is actually a berry – should’ve kept it!).  I will paint my nails with this next.

*Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner ($16.00 full size).*  Nothing to say – I LOVE this eyeliner, and it was one of my first blog posts (that I will not link because it was awful).  Feel free to search my blog though, as I have never deleted my earlier efforts.

picture-of-glossybox-kryolan-highlighter

Kryolan For Glossybox Highlighter in Cashmere

*Kryolan For Glossybox Highlighter In Cashmere ($18.95 full size).  This is a special-edition multipurpose highlighter created just for the Glossybox birthday.*  Kryolan – YES!  But I think this shade might be a tad too light for me.  We shall see….

picture-of-glossybox-eslor-firming-collagen-day-cream

Glossybox Eslor Firming Collagen Day Cream

*Eslor Firming Collagen Day Cream ($85.00 full size).  Anti-aging cream with skin-firming ingredients like ginseng, marine collagen, avocado, wheat germ/sesame oils.  Should be used twice a day.*  Twice a day?  How is that a “day” cream?  It does have a gentle rose scent.

Another bonus of Glossybox is that their boxes are gorgeous, and reusable for so many other things.

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

A Few MAC Pigments

Hello beautiful people!  I hope everyone had an enjoyable three day weekend!  Mine was perfect because my Dawgs had an awesome victory Saturday!  It was hot as the blue blazes in Athens, and I was miserable in the stadium.  But we won and we looked pretty darn good.  Fingers crossed for a fabulous season.  Not gonna lie, I’m ready for some cooler temps.

Okay, onto more girly subjects.  We adore all things MAC, so I thought I’d share with you a few MAC pigments that I adore!

picture-of-a-few-mac-pigments

A Few MAC Pigments

Let me begin my saying I did not know MAC had a “Sized To Go” collection of some of their most popular items.  They are smaller, travel friendly products that happen to include eight shades of pigment!  I did a beauty swap with the gorgeous Dani from The Love of Lipstick, and she included two of these in my box.  Definitely check out the “Sized To Go” selection for a less expensive way to try out some MAC items you’re interested in!

picture-of-mac-tan-pigment-mac-rose-pigment

(L-R) MAC Tan Pigment, MAC Rose Pigment

“My own” descriptions to follow (all are “frost” formulas):

“Tan” is a rose gold color.  Very pigmented yet not over the top.  “Rose” is a bronzey-pink; very warm but not a stark pink, so you don’t look like you’ve got an eye infection when you wear it.

picture-of-mac-violet-pigment-mac-copper-sparkle-pigment

(L-R) MAC Violet Pigment, MAC Copper Sparkle Pigment

“Violet” is a bright, yet subdued purple.  “Copper Sparkle” is one of my favorites.  It has a rather metallic finish, and really does look copper!

picture-of-mac-melon-pigment-mac-blue-brown-pigment

(L-R) MAC Melon Pigment, MAC Blue Brown Pigment

These are the “Sized To Go” beauties Dani sent me.  “Melon” is a gorgeous, peachy/golden color (think fantasy cantaloupe).  “Blue Brown” I believe is now my absolute favorite pigment.  It is like a duochrome – a rich cinnamon with teal flecks.  *swoon*

Swatches?

picture-of-mac-pigment-swatches

MAC Pigment Swatches (L-R) Blue Brown, Melon, Violet, Copper Sparkle, Rose, Tan

Another angle:

picture-of-mac-pigment-swatches

MAC Pigment Swatches top to bottom Tan, Rose, Copper Sparkle, Violet, Melon, Blue Brown

Don’t be intimidated by MAC pigments.  They make for a gorgeous lid color on their own, or to add bling to your finished look.   Since they are so frosty, you may experience some fallout.  Using a tissue under your eyes to catch it helps.  However, if I am going to be using pigments, I wet my brush with MAC Fix+ (water works just as well) before applying.  It definitely makes the color more vibrant!

picture-of-mac-pigment-swatches-with-fix-plus

MAC Pigment Swatches With Fix+

For comparison purposes, I doused my arm with Fix+ for this shot.  It definitely makes the color more vibrant/wet looking!

Either way, MAC pigments are fabulous!

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

My Favorite Lash Glue and Lashes

Hello everyone!  The beginning of college football season has honestly just crept up on me.  I knew it was soon, but I just realized this week that the Georgia Bulldogs first game is this Saturday!  We will be in Athens this weekend to root for our Dawgs.  I do love me some college football and I love me some Athens.  Kickoff is at 5:30, and it is going to be a scorcher.

I know football and fake lashes have nothing in common.  But I had to mention my excitement for the upcoming season as well as share my favorite lash glue and lashes.  So there you go.  No logic/rhyme/reason.  Please note that I do not wear falsies to football games.  There is a time and place for that, and an outdoor sporting event in 97 degrees/high humidity is not one of them.  How professional cheerleaders pull it off, I don’t know??

picture-of-favorite-lash-glue-and-lashes

My Favorite Lash Glue and Lashes

I am hyper-sensitive to latex.  Near my eye area, I would consider myself allergic.  Of course that realization came after many trials and tribulations with lash glue.

picture-of-revlon-precision-lash-adhesive

Revlon Precision Lash Adhesive

Enter Revlon Precision Lash Adhesive.  It is latex free (!!!!), and comes in a clear and dark formula.  I have only used the clear (and it actually dries clear on me).

picture-of-revlon-precision-lash-adhesive

Revlon Precision Lash Adhesive

This is a brush on formula that is easy to control and dispenses just the right amount.  It lasts all day for me and wears very comfortably.  In my area, I can only find it at Walmart, and it is like $5.  When you apply it to the lash band, it is an ectoplasmic, glowy blue.  Kinda weird.  It dries quicker than your traditional glue.  One tiny complaint – as you can see in the photo, the glue gets a bit gunky on the applicator wand, and builds up around the opening.  I’ve learned to seal it between uses, but it still gums up to the point you have to toss it before you’ve used it all up.

Now onto the lashes!  Since I am half-Asian and have small eyes, these are the lashes that work best for me.

picture-of-ardell-demi-black-lashes-120

Ardell 120 Demi Black Lashes

My hands down favorite are the Ardell 120 Demis.  These are very natural looking – as if you  were blessed with super thick/lush lashes, and decided to curl them and apply two coats of mascara (You know who you are, Amie, Rosie, Tiffany, Tanya) .  If you are a newcomer to falsies, these are the best to practice/experiment with.  They are super lightweight, and the lash band is very thin and easy to work with.  You can buy them anywhere (drugstore/walmart/target/sally/ulta).  I usually wait until Ulta has a sale, and order online using Ebates (score if it’s Double Cash Back), especially for a multi-pack!  They can also be used multiple times, as long as you take care of them.  My Ulta never has them in stock.

My next beloved line is Red Cherry!

picture-of-red-cherry-213-lashes

Red Cherry 213 Lashes

Red Cherry also offers great lashes that are easy to use.  213 is very natural, but a bit fuller than the Ardell lashes.  One thing I love about Red Cherry is that the band is literally invisible, so if you don’t use eyeliner, no big deal.  You can do a natural eye look without worrying about hiding the band with eyeliner.

picture-of-red-cherry-747s-747l-lashes

Red Cherry 747S and 747L Lashes

Oooh, the 747. Kind of like the airplane.  Super long, super strong, but still on the natural side.  My photo is the 747S (short) and 747L (long).  There is also a 747M (medium), that I didn’t have here to photograph.  The “L” is usually for special occasions, but the “S” and “M” (puh-leese no 50 shades references!!!!) are respectable for daytime.

picture-of-red-cherry-43-lashes

Red Cherry 43 Lashes

Apologies, as this pair has been trimmed and used many times (and still going strong!).  43 is about as glam as I go.  When you have tiny eyes, you’ve got to know your limitations.  This pair is my go to for special occasions/parties/events.  As much as I LOVE Liza Minnelli, I cannot pull of her Bambi-lash glam.

Red Cherry lashes are about $2.50 a pair, and can be used multiple times (with proper care).  I order mine from Madame Madeline, and they ship super fast.

Along my journey to fake lash nirvana, I have made some missteps.

picture-of-bundle-monster-lashes

Bundle Monster Lashes

Bundle Monster (a vendor on ebay and Amazon) offers 70 PAIRS of lashes for $25.  10 pairs of 7 styles.  My photo captures the most natural to the most over the top glam.

picture-of-lash-band-comparison-bundle-monster-lashes

Lash Band Comparison Bundle Monster Lashes

As you can see, the lash band between a Red Cherry and a Monster Bundle lash is night and day.  I personally do not have the skill to apply a thick, unyielding band to my lash line.  But that is my shortfall.  If you can, it is a great value (especially if you wear thick liner).

Oh, the fine line we tread between natural and fake!!!

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxosignaturenew

 

My Milani Bella Eyes Gel Powder Eyeshadow Picks

Hey everyone!  “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” is one of my guilty pleasures.  As if that wasn’t lame enough, I actually cried watching the season finale tonight (via the magic of the DVR).  Another one of my shows is over for the season, and I am quickly running out of things to watch.  MUST figure out how to integrate Netflix with my TV.  Just thought I’d share that bit of info with you.  Now onto the important stuff…..

I believe Milani is one of the most beloved drugstore makeup lines.  I honestly can’t think of anything I’ve tried from them that I didn’t like – with the exception of the smell of their lipsticks.  I think I am the only person in the world that has an issue with the scent.  So when they introduced their eyeshadow line, the beautiverse went berserk.  My Walgreens has THE absolute sweetest makeup lady, and she told me her phone was ringing off the hook with people calling to see when they would have these in stock during the launch.  Here are my Milani Bella Eyes Gel Powder Eyeshadow picks!

picture-of-milani-bella-eyes-gel-powder-eyeshadow

Milani Bella Eyes Gel Powder Eyeshadow

They have some truly gorgeous nude shades, but since I have soooo many nudes (I know, they are all different), I chose colors that I didn’t already have a ton of.  Are you ready???

picture-of-milani-bella-eyes-gel-powder-eyeshadow

Milani Bella Eyes Gel Powder Eyeshadow

Whoa.

There are a great variety of hues that come in three formulas – satin matte, shimmer, and metallic.  I picked two satin mattes and two shimmers.

picture-of-milani-bella-eyes-gel-powder-eyeshadow-bella-navy-bella-fuchsia

Bella Navy and Bella Fuchsia

picture-of-milani-bella-eyes-gel-powder-eyeshadow-bella-navy-bella-fuchsia

Bella Navy and Bella Fuchsia

My two satin mattes, Bella Navy and Bella Fuchsia.

picture-of-milani-bella-eyes-gel-powder-eyeshadow-bella-violet-bella-emerald

Bella Violet and Bella Emerald

picture-of-milani-bella-eyes-gel-powder-eyeshadow-bella-violet-bella-emerald

Bella Violet and Bella Emerald

My two shimmers, Bella Violet and Bella Emerald.

picture-of-milani-bella-eyes-gel-powder-eyeshadow-swatches

Milani Bella Eyes Gel Powder Eyeshadow Swatches

I was going to just wash my hands after swatching on my arm, but thought, “Hey, this is too pretty”.  Wasn’t so fun trying to hold the camera in my left hand (I’m right handed) to snap this photo.  I believe every cuss world I know came out of my mouth.  Really.  However, this is a true picture of the shadow.

Pinky to index finger: Bella Emerald, Bella Violet, Bella Fuchsia, Bella Navy.

picture-of-milani-bella-eyes-gel-powder-eyeshadow-swatches

Milani Bella Eyes Gel Powder Eyeshadow Swatches (L-R Bella Navy, Bella Fuchsia, Bella Violet, Bella Emerald)

Above swatches on my arm are over primer.

Now for the down and dirty.  *Again, this is my experience with these shadows, with my medium/olive skintone*.  As pigmented as these look, they took a bit of work/experimentation in terms of using them.  All the shadows were very soft, with no fallout.  An eyeshadow primer is a must.  I did find that my choices were better suited for application with fingers vs brush.

My standout was Bella Navy (satin matte).  It was pigmented, easy to blend, and worked with a brush or fingers.

My fail (that I had such hopes for!) was Bella Fuchsia (satin matte).  You see how it looks in the pan.  I was hoping it would be a very pigmented pink.  Did not work at all with a brush (I had to load it up, and apply over and over with no good result).  However, it applied much better with my finger.  So, as a lid color, good.  As a crease/transition color, not so good.

My next favorite is Bella Emerald (shimmer).  This one was so/so with a brush, but gorgeous applied with a finger.  I will keep working on ways to incorporate this, as it really is a beautiful shade.

Last, but not least, is Bella Violet (shimmer).  For me, a total fail with the brush, but worked fabulously with my finger.  Again, a good lid color.  Not that you would put this in your crease anyways.

So there you have it.  At $4 a pop, I think it’s a great investment.

Have you tried these shadows, and how did you like your choices?

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Loreal Collection Privee Evas Nude

Hello my gorgeous people!  Earlier this evening, I went outside to water my flower pots, and got totally eaten up by mosquitoes.  They love, love, love me.  I usually spray up with OFF! even for a 5 minute jaunt outside in the evening.  Totally forgot this time, and I was the equivalent of a Las Vegas deluxe buffet for those stupid bloodsuckers.  I honestly got about 15 bites in 15 minutes.  Ugh!  You know how we stash lip balm/hand sanitizer/gum all over the place, and always have some with us?  That is how I am with mosquito repellent.  Seriously.  I get gigantic welts all over my body from their bites, and they itch like crazy!!!

Sorry for the whining, but the struggle is real.  Onto my review at hand – the L’Oreal Collection Privee Eva’s Nude!

picture-of-loreal-collection-privee-evas-nude

L’Oreal Collection Privee Eva’s Nude

Or, Private Collection.  L’Oreal occasionally does collaborations with various celebrities to create a shade to match different skintones/complexions/ethnicities.  This go round was a range of nudes.  The packaging:  A sleek, black, matte lipstick case with gold accents.  Really glam!

picture-of-loreal-collection-privee-evas-nude

L’Oreal Collection Privee Eva’s Nude

I chose Eva’s Nude (Eva Longoria), created for light to medium skintones.  Is it not gorgeous?

picture-of-loreal-collection-privee-evas-nude

L’Oreal Collection Privee Eva’s Nude

JLo also created a shade for medium/olive complexions (more me), but when I saw it in person at the drugstore, it looked a bit cool/beige (so can’t do beige).  Eva’s looked more warm/pink, so that’s what I chose!

picture-of-loreal-collection-privee-evas-nude

L’Oreal Collection Privee Eva’s Nude

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you know I struggle with nude lipsticks.  I think it is because my lips are not very pigmented.  I think all of the color on my face is in my skin.  I have a true medium/olive complexion, and my lips are pretty pale in comparison.  Therefore, nude lipsticks wash me out.

picture-of-loreal-collection-privee-evas-nude-swatch

L’Oreal Collection Privee Eva’s Nude Swatch

Generally what you see on my arm is not what you see on my lips (pigmentation!!).

picture-of-loreal-collection-privee-evas-nude-closeup

L’oreal Collection Privee Eva’s Nude Closeup

See what I mean?  The formula is what I would consider a satin – good pigmentation, though not opaque, with a bit of shimmer.  The lipstick is very soft, and easy to apply.  It does have the “signature” Colour Riche baby powder scent that some people find offensive.  Doesn’t bother me.

picture-of-loreal-collection-privee-evas-nude

L’Oreal Collection Privee Eva’s Nude

See, it doesn’t really do much for me.  I think it washes me out, as most nudes do.  There was a nude for “deep” skintones, but you know me.  I’d rather wear my usual vibrant, dark colors.  Because they work for me.  I do have some “lighter” colors I like that may qualify as nudes for someone with my coloring.  Future post!

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine

Hello Sweetpeas!  I am going to just jump right into my Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine review.  Bite Beauty has just introduced several new shades into their Matte Creme line.

picture-of-bite-beauty-matte-creme-lip-crayon-aubergine

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine

My first Bite Beauty lip product was their High Pigment Pencil, and I fell in love.  This line uses natural food grade ingredients, and is full of resveratrol; again, a natural antioxidant.

picture-of-bite-beauty-matte-creme-lip-crayon-aubergine

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine

My color of choice was Aubergine, which Bite describes as “Eggplant”.  (Bonus French lesson – the vegetable we Americans call eggplant is an aubergine in France!!!).  No matter which language, PURPLE!

picture-of-bite-beauty-matte-creme-lip-crayon-aubergine

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine

My camera isn’t the best at capturing true colors, but it really does look more “purple” than in my photos.

picture-of-bite-beauty-matte-creme-lip-crayon-aubergine

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine

The formula is very creamy.  I did notice a difference in texture compared to the High Pigment Pencil. But is it a real matte lipstick???

picture-of-bite-beauty-matte-creme-lip-crayon-aubergine-swatch

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine Swatch

Ah, not the true purple/aubergine/eggplant I’d hoped for, but I DO love the color.  The formula isn’t what you may be used to in the matte lipstick arena; unlike a MAC retro matte, or NARS matte…this has a bit of “shine” to it….

picture-of-bite-beauty-matte-creme-lip-crayon-aubergine-swatch

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine

As you can see, this photo does not look like a matte lipstick.  Though super pigmented, it is easy to apply, moisturizing, and comfortable to wear – without lip balm.  I got about 3-4 hours of wear, eating/drinking.

picture-of-bite-beauty-matte-creme-lip-crayon-aubergine

Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon Aubergine

In my opinion, this is not a true matte lipstick.  I think the formula is similar to the High Pigment Pencil.  A touch on the shiny side.  But, I do love Bite Beauty!  And I am a fan of their lip products!!  I find this matte a bit lacking as a true matte formula.  It may be my color choice.  However, I will be using more Bite Beauty, and trying more matte pencils.

Regardless, is it a great pen!

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Tori Amos Unrepentant Geraldines Tour Atlanta Review

Hello my lovely readers!  If you have read my bio on any of my social media, you would know I classify myself “Tori Amos Obsessed”.  I had the pleasure of seeing her on August 19 in Atlanta, GA.  After getting home the next day after that fabulous performance, I went online hoping some other fans who attended that show might have shared their thoughts.  NONE.  So, for what it’s worth, I want to give MY Tori Amos Unrepentant Geraldines Tour Atlanta Review.  If you are not a Tori fan, feel free to skip this, and we’ll catch up later!

me-and-essa-tori-amos-atlanta-tour

Me & Essa Tori Amos Concert Atlanta GA

My lovely companion is my sweet friend Essa.  It was her first Tori concert, and I am honored that  we experienced it together.  Please forgive the grainy photos – I only had my phone camera with me.

This show was at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre.  It is an absolutely beautiful venue, complete with the cool box seats elevated near the front of the stage.  We were in the mid-level mezzanine seats, towards the right side of the stage.  So my pictures are not up close and personal with Tori.  On a side note, we stayed at the Embassy Suites Galleria, which is  literally right next door to the venue.  We actually walked back and forth without having to worry about a cab.  Sweet!

We got ourselves some wine, found our seats, and eagerly waited for the show to begin.  Oh, the anticipation!!!  The lady next to us actually got to do the meet and greet with Tori, and showed us the pictures.  So jelly!!!

picture-of-tori-amos-setup-atlanta-ga

Tori Amos Setup Atlanta GA

We noticed there was no set up for her band.  Just keyboards and her trademark Bosendorfer.  Then, from the right side of the stage, she appeared!  Resplendent in her flowy top, killer heels, and flaming red hair.  She did stop and shake hands with some fans who were right up next to the stage.

The one thing that I find truly amazing about Tori is that during her tours, she never does the same set list.  Every performance is a different set of songs.  I honestly don’t know how she does it.  Different lyrics every night would be hard enough, but being responsible for the accompanying music also???  However, she did start each show this go round with the same opening song, “Parasol”.  She only did two new songs from Geraldines.  The rest of the set was classic, old school favorites.

picture-of-tori-amos-setlist-atlanta-ga

Tori Amos Set List Atlanta GA courtesy of @toriamos

Being a performing arts venue, the acoustics were unreal.  The accompanying light “show” was perfect and really enhanced each song.  What blew my mind was that this tiny, lone woman with only her big old grand piano and keyboards, totally commanded that stage.  Her voice never wavered as she hit all the high notes and sang her ass off.  She sounds just as good live as her studio recordings.  She is a mesmerizing performer with her dramatic hand gestures, perfectly timed hard “slaps” on her piano, and the maniacal, down and dirty piano playing (Little Amsterdam, Father Lucifer, Cornflake Girl, Precious Things).  Then she just as easily slows things down and makes your heart feel like it’s just going to bust wide open with emotion (Baker Baker, Pandora’s Aquarium, Scarlet’s Walk).  And straddling her bench to play piano with one hand, and keyboards/organ with the other, simultaneously?  Get out.

picture-of-tori-amos-atlanta-ga1

Tori Amos Atlanta GA

Kinda hard to see in my blurry pic.  Lizards Lounge is where she does her take on two cover songs.  She told us that “Out Here On My Own” (Irene Cara/Fame) was a song she played a lot in piano bars back in the day and it was a personal favorite of hers.  Then during “Rocket Man” (Elton John), she dropped the F-bomb when she got a little tangled up in the opening lyrics, saying, “okay, okay, okay” and laughing until she got herself straightened out.  That alone proved to me that she is indeed human, and can make a teeny mistake.  Like I said, it was blowing my mind that she did so many different songs each show.

picture-of-tori-amos-atlanta-ga

Tori Amos Atlanta GA

During the changeover, her keyboards were swapped out for her Hammond Organ.  “The Beekeeper” was goose-bump-inducing haunting.  Seriously.

Essa and I were extremely pleased with the songs we got to hear.  “Floating City” is from her Y Tori Kant read days, so it’s a rarity.  “Your Cloud” is probably my absolute favorite Tori song, and I got a little teary when she played it.  She also was a bit choked up afterwards, saying she didn’t really play that song very much these days.  “Winter” pushed Essa over the edge.

It was a fabulous evening, and I wish I could go to more shows when she tours in the US.

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

A Few Bronzers – Drugstore

Hello everyone!  I have been on a super organization mission this weekend.  I’m talking drawers and cabinets.  Digging the instant gratification and the feeling of accomplishment tidying up small spaces.  A primer for my bigger challenge – my closet!  Ugh!  While going through my stuff, I found a previous long-time favorite bronzer tucked away, long forgotten.  So I decided to round him up and talk about a few bronzers – drugstore!

picture-of-a-few-bronzers-drugstore

A Few Bronzers – Drugstore

One of my favorite drugstore brands is Physicians Formula.  Um, the bronzers in this post are all PF.  With NYX tagging along.  I do have an olive complexion, so keep that in mind as you read my favorites.

picture-of-pf-glow-boosting-pressed-shimmer-bronzer

Physicians Formula Glow Boosting Pressed Shimmer Bronzer

The aforementioned abandoned love is this Physicians Formula Glow Boosting Pressed Shimmer Bronzer in Med-Dark.

picture-of-a-few-bronzers-drugstore1

Glow Boosting Pressed Shimmer Bronzer

It comes apart, with a built in brush and a mirror on the bottom of the pan.  I have used it so much the writing along the bottom of the brush is completely worn off.  And you can see the wear in the pan.  It does have shimmer, so it is strictly for bronzing, not contouring.  This is probably my favorite bronzer from PF.  It gives me a healthy glow, with just the right amount of shimmer.  I am so happy we are reunited.

picture-of-pf-glow-boosting-season-to-season-bronzer

Glow Boosting Season To Season Bronzer

This is the Glow Boosting Season to Season Bronzer in Med-Dark.  It has shades for winter, spring, summer, fall (makes me think of James Taylor).  I found the shades too light for me, regardless of the season.  The “Spring” was used up a bit by my beloved niece during a visit (she is very fair).  The rest is untouched.

picture-of-pf-airbrushing-bronzing-veil-deluxe-edition

Airbrushing Bronzing Veil Deluxe Edition

This latest offering by Physicians Formula, Airbrushing Bronzing Veil, Deluxe Edition, does indeed look airbrushed as a bronzer!  Love!!  Again, in Med-Dark.

picture-of-a-few-bronzers-drugstore2

A Few Bronzers – Drugstore

Both compacts flip open to offer a mirror and a brush.

picture-of-nyx-matte-bronzer

NYX Matte Bronzer

If you are looking for a matte bronzer, NYX offers a fabulous product that can also be used for contour!!!  It is totally matte, and I chose the shade “Medium” strictly for a nose contour.

From bottom up, Glow Boosting Pressed Shimmer Bronzer swatch; Airbrushing Bronzing Veil swatch;  NYX Matte Bronzer Swatch

From bottom up, Glow Boosting Pressed Shimmer Bronzer swatch; Airbrushing Bronzing Veil swatch; NYX Matte Bronzer Swatch

Swatches of the single Physicians Formula bronzers and the NYX.  As you can see, the NYX on the top is very matte.  How gorgeous are the Physicians Formula bronzers???  Not over the top shimmer, right?

picture-of-a-few-bronzers-drugstore-swatches1

Swatches of Glow Boosting Season to Season Bronzer

From the bottom up, it is Winter (it is barely visible on the very bottom of my arm), Spring, Summer, Fall, with a bit of the gold highlight that you could see in the center of the compact.

blue-color-point-ragdoll-cat

Someone other than Murphy wants to say hello.  This is Toulouse.

I also have a post on my favorite high-end bronzer if you’d like to take a look.

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew

 

Boscia Blotting Linens Review

Hey lovely people!  The dog days of summer are upon us.  I find August to be the hottest month here in Georgia.  Most areas in the country begin feeling a bit of relief from the heat, but we are supposed to be 112 degrees next Friday with the heat index!  We usually don’t start to feel a change in the temperature until mid-September.  So, I want to share my Boscia Blotting Linens Review with you, as it is truly a life saver when I feel like my makeup is melting off my face!

Boscia is a Japanese-based company that creates preservative-fee, botanically-based skincare products.

picture-of-boscia-blotting-linens-review

Boscia Blotting Linens Review

“Blotting Papers/Linens” are exactly that – squares of special paper that you press against your face to remove any excess oil/perspiration.  Boscia offers many types of blotting papers linens.

When you’re hot, sweaty, and greasy feeling, do you really want to put a powder on your face to “touch up” (no matter how translucent/lightweight it is)???  Then deal with the yucky applicator again (bacteria?!).  Then there’s the build up of cakey powder on your mug after you’ve had to re-apply multiple times.  And your poor skin not being able to breathe after drowning in powder!

If you have “mature” skin like me, all that powder is a recipe for disaster.  These blotting linens have been a lifesaver for me!

boscia-blotting-linens-review

Boscia Blotting Linens Green Tea

My latest purchase was their Limited Edition Green Tea linens.

picture-of-boscia-blotting-linens-review

Boscia Blotting Linens Fresh

This is my go-to that I buy all the time (Fresh).  As you can see, he is a bit beat up from living in my purse.  But I wanted to give him some love as well.

picture-of-boscia-blotting-linens-review

Boscia Blotting Linens Review

They come in a very compact package.  Each holds 100 sheets.

picture-of-boscia-blotting-linens-review

Boscia Blotting Linens Review

The green tea is on the left, the regular (Fresh) is on the right.  I stick to my “Fresh” usually.  However, if I happen to catch a LE edition, I snatch it right up.

I have tried many drugstore blotting papers.  Boscia’s paper really makes it a “linen”.  It is super strong, really absorbs the ick, and you can see the evidence on the sheet afterwards.  Think bacon drained on a brown paper bag.

You can purchase these linens on the Boscia site, or on good old Sephora!

Again, thanks for reading!  kxoxo

signaturenew