Makeup Wars: Our Holiday Metallics

I’ve been asked to join another blog group and I’m all giddy about it because blogging is one thing but being a part of a community is something else. It just wouldn’t be as fun. I am the newest blogger on the Makeup Wars group, a band of bloggers who rally together to do showcase their opinions, recs and pics on a particular topic. It’s fun stuff because within MY post, you can click on over to another blogger’s post. It’s mad cool, yo.

This week we’re rappin’ about holiday metallics and while I’m not much of a metallic-wearin’ gal, I came across some goodies in my beauty stash. I’m going to tryyyyy to incorporate these bad boys throughout the weeks. Maybe I’ll grow to love them. Kinda like corals. OMG, remember how much I hated coral nail polish? Hmm mmm…

MoonRaker from OPI’s Skyfall collection is a fabulous metallic gray.

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And when it comes to metallic shadows on the lids, I am loooooving Urban Decay’s Smoked palette.

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I mean, check out that bottom row of awesomeness. Loaded is my favorite and it is a gorgeouuuus deep emerald shimmer with a metallic base. And when it comes to lips? Y’all know I looooove red. It’s hard to find a fantastic red metallic lipstick (although I think Hourglass Siren is close) so a few years ago, I faked a metallic lip by dapping a bit of hot pink glitter over red lipstick.

Sounds crazy, but I promise you it works. Especially if you’re pairing it with a shimmery metallic gold eyeshadow. POW! That red lip is COVERGIRL’s Cherry Bomb and I don’t even know if they have it anymore. It was hands down one of my favooooorite red lipsticks EVER!

Laugh at me if you want, but I promise it works. I’ve got plans to dabble in more metallic cosmetics so stay tuned for my findings.

Any metallic cosmetics lovers in the house?

My Le Métier de Beauté Cosmetics makeover

Part of being a beauty blogger means educating thyself. I mean, yeah…I could only showcase the saaaaaame products and brands year after year but what fun is that? I like sharing new innovations and new products and brands that you may not have ever heard of. Like the brand Le Métier de Beauté Cosmetics.

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I know, I know. You’re probably like, “Seriously B…is this a French brand or something?” Actually no, it’s not. This brand sits stateside at the counters of Neiman Marcus and online for those who don’t have a Neiman in their area. I first heard about this brand when I attended that fabulous Beauty Blogger Bunch a few months back. Le Métier de Beauté and I have gotten more acquainted and I am so excited to share my findings (and makeover) with you guys and gals.

Le Métier de Beauté (which in French translates to to “the craft of beauty”) is a luxurious skincare and makeup brand that has found its place in the beauty world for a good 5 years or so. The brand was founded on 3 core principles: craft, design and quality. It’s a brand that if you see at a counter, you are instantly drawn too because their products are not only eye-catching but diverse as well. And by diverse, I mean you’ll see color, color and more color. This is such a rarity in higher-end brands. And call me nutty, but I didn’t know that Le Métier de Beauté did spa treatments.

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Yes darling, special masks and peels can be done in right in a nice and secluded section of the mall. I was actually going to get a peel but when my specialist noticed my baby bump, she thought that a makeover would be a better fit. And you know I wasn’t complaining about that. Speaking of my specialist…Irina was wonderful. She talked about each product in depth as she applied it to my face. Le Métier de Beauté didn’t appear to have a wide selection of brown-girl friendly foundations available, but Irina did a grand job at mixing up a lil’ somethin’.

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She told me about the beautiful liners…

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…and makeup remover.

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The kaleidoscope eyeshadows (love these!).

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And the mascara…

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The mascara, by the way, has a clear tube so you can actually see when you’re running out of product. Now why didn’t I think of this?

I’ll be a giving a closer look at some of these products later but I can say that their performances lasted beautifully in that 80 degree weather we had the other day. And the finished look?

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I look like a straight up news reporter with wonky hair in that last pic, uh? Either way, Irina impressed me and that is hard to do with a beauty blogger. I’m not always a fan of people doing my makeup but I could totally go back to Irina any day. Her and fellow counter-mate Melissa were wonderful.

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Stay tuned for more information about this brand! Have any of y’all heard about Le Métier de Beauté Cosmetics?

ETA: Although I wasn’t able to experience the CHEM60 Pro-Peel & GLOW10ai Mask Set due to my being pregnant, many of my fellow beauty blogger sisters and had raving reviews about it. It is finally available for purchase at Neiman Marcus counters and at NeimanMarcus.com. It’s a bit pricey at $265 but it lasts for quite some times and hey, skincare is worth the investment, isn’t it? :cool:

Mascara Monday: Sephora Outrageous Volume mascara

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I get so embarrassed sometimes. Like, why don’t I review more Sephora mascaras? It makes no sense. I think sometimes I get so caught up with the bigger and more popular brands that I forget about Sephora’s products. I suck, I know. I’ll be stepping my game up in 2013. Don’t worry. In the meantime, I’m excited to show off this adorable little Bewitching Eye Kit.

The kit itself includes the Sephora Outrageous Volume mascara and also a mini-versions of glitter eyeliner/mascara and a black eyeliner.

An adorable little kit for only $20. Not too shabby.

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Price: $15 for mascara alone and $22 for the kit at Sephora and Sephora.com.
Packaging (brush wand): 2 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: “This mascara’s unique triple load brush intensely coats lashes in one easy stroke for a full, luscious look. The thick, Ultra Black formula is enriched with hyaluronic acid—an ingredient recognized for its moisturizing properties. Use the brush’s reservoirs to intensify lashes from root to tip, separate lashes with the “spiked” areas, or achieve a curved effect by pressing the brush lightly against the tips of the upper lashes.” (source)

The Truth: Whoa whoa whoa! My lashes are nice and looooong!

What I Loved About It: I love the richness of the mascara and I love the volumizing aspects.

What I Didn’t Like: It found it to be a bit flaky and I really hate the wand.

Overall: The holiday season is a brewin’ and so I am all up in the spirit. Hence why you see candy cane-related backdrops ‘n such. Anyway, I’m not sure if this kit is a staple for Sephora or if it’s just around for the holidays but either way, I think it’s a good value. The mascara is reasonably priced at $15 and for an extra $7 you can get some additional eye trinkets. Way to go, Sephora!

But of course, most of what I’ll be talking about will be about the mascara itself.And to start off, I just wasn’t a fan of the wand.

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The wand really sucks and it’s unfortunate because the mascara is really a good mascara. What’s not to like about the wand? There’s no stopper in the tube so I have to deal with the excess mascara that ends up being wiped away. I ended up with far too much mascara on the wand each time I pulled it out. It would take me 2-3 minutes just to remove the gunk and get started on my lashes. Yeah. Hate when that happens. Once I’d remove the gunk, the plastic bristles didn’t seem to be long enough. But they were workable. I also appreciated the little round ball at the end of the mascara. I find those particularly useful for applying mascara to the lower lashes. When, of course, they aren’t covered with 3 feet of mascara gunk. I’m exaggerating, of course but that’s what it feels like each time I remove the wand from the tube.

So yeah, if you can get past the gunk on the mascara wand, everything else is pretty pleasant. The mascara has a thicker formula but it’s easy to apply on the lashes. In fact, it’s the kind of formula that really makes the lashes look beautiful after only 1 coat. I love when this happens! I’ve been curling my lashes lately and this mascara has done a really good job at holding the curl.

Length-wise, the mascara delivers and it does darn good with volume too. In  fact, it’s SO good that I think you can get away with applying 2 coats tops. I tried to push it to the limit with 3 coats but I ended up with clumps…of mascara. :cool: And while the mascara does a good job at lasting on the lashes, it did flake on me a bit after 8 hours or so. Which is almost expected but still something to not. Overall, I was super impressed. How many other Sephora mascaras have I been sleeping on?

 

Bare Lashes



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Lashes after 2 coats


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Do I recommend it?: Yep. It’s a pretty awesome mascara.

 

Have you ever tried any of Sephora’s mascaras? Are they all this kind of awesome?


Small Business Saturday!

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I have developed such an attitude about Black Friday (hence why you didn’t see any posts about it from me) but Small Business Saturday is definitely something that I can rally behind. I’d much rather support the mom and pop businesses over these huge corporations that are underpaying their employees and forcing that they work in these nutty Black Friday conditions. Yeah, I know. I’ve been a part of the problem before as I’ve done my fair share of Black Friday’ing throughout the years but when you know better, you do better.

Small Business Saturday rocks for everyone! That said, if you’ve gotta do some spending today, check out some of my favorite small but LARGE in quality/service businesses.

Cult Nails Lacquer – Because I adore everything about Maria, the person AND her brand.

Nail Veils & Chronicle Stones – Su runs both companies and she’s a fantastic mentor and power woman who has such an amazing eye for intricate pieces.

Boldly Unique - my good friend Christine handmakes these beautifuuuuul hair fascinators and hair pieces for women of all hair types.

Lipstick Mixtapes – Remember when I reviewed Safia Michelle’s lipsticks? She’s still rockin’ out with them and these babies can’t seem to stay in stock because they are THAT popular.

Oyin Handmade – The natural hair space has become sooooo full of natural haircare products and while it’s a great thing, I tend to stick with what I know. Oyin Handmade has delicious haircare and body care products for everyone. This company and their products seem to get better with time.

Quelly Rue Designs – I’ve reviewed her pieces before and ever since coming across this brand, I just have to make a purchase every few months. I love everything about Racquel’s handmade African-inspired jewelry, hair pieces and accessoires. Plus, she delivers a hand written letter with every purchase. Loves it!

Elessa Jade - Long time beauty vlogger and buddy of mine, Elessa of Pursebuzz recently launched her own line of brushes and jewelry. I’ve dabbled in both the jewelry and products and I’m in loooove.

EnkoreMakeup – And then there’s Koren, the HUGE YouTube sensation that has always been so supportive of lil’ ole’ me. He recently launched Lip Yogurts and omggggg, they are fabulous.

Rachel Stewart – Because her jewelry just screams to my afro-hippie bohem personality.

Tia Dantzler – Celebrity makeup artist and beautiful soul Tia just launched her Red Carpet Secrets Instructional DVD and I’ve already watched it 3 times. Makeup artist or just a beauty lover, this is a fantastic DVD that you’ll be watching time and time again to help perfect your skills.

Want to support the small businesses in your area? Visit this site to do a search on where you can find ‘em. Happy shopping!

The Lipstick League: Weekly Links, Volume 69

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Welcome to the Lipstick League Best of Fall edition! We’ve asked our members to share a link to their favorite product they’ve reviewed so far this season. And without further ado, here they are…

Gouldylox Reviews – My favorite product so far this season is my current mascara. Would it work for you?

Nouveau Cheap – My favorite product this season, and the one I’ve been reaching for the most, is this little $2 lip balm. Sometimes the best things are just so simple, aren’t they?

Pink Sith – My favorite product this season is an all in one Armani Palette (OK, maybe not ALL) but the blush and eyeshadow are so awesome for fall and easily transition into the holiday season!

Prime Beauty – My favorite products of the Fall season can be seen in this look from Makeup Wars -Battle of the Fall Face. I especially love the LORAC Pro Palette!

Phyrra – I have been in love with my Makeup Show Orlando Manicure with Cult Nails Nevermore and butter LONDON Fairy Cake. I keep wanting to wear this combination over and over again.

we heart this – This is not only Stef’s favorite red lipstick of fall, but her favorite red of ALL TIME. It’s Stila’s liquid lipstick in Beso, and if you’re a red lip junkie, you pretty much need this.

Beauty Junkies Unite – I fell in love with the nail colors in OPI’s Germany Collection in the fall of 2012, and over 10,000 Pinterest users did too!

Clumps of Mascara – I have been in love with so many nail polishes all season but Zoya’s Ornate nail polish collection absolutely rocked my world. These polishes are so gorgeous that sometimes I just sit and stare at the bottles.

EauMG I have had a very busy fall and haven’t reviewed half of the perfumes that I have fallen in love with, but I did review one – Von Eusersdorff New York Classic Patchouli. It’s a warm, cuddly comfort scent for me that is perfect for fall.

See you next week!

 

Gettin’ my tango on with Make Up For Ever’s Black Tango palette

Make Up For Ever is always coming out with products that make you go, “How did I live without this before?” And yeah, I know that sounds soooooo dramatic, but it’s so true. Take their aqua creams for example. As fantastic as they are, they are quite bulky sitting on my beauty table or travel tote. When I carry them, I usually only limit myself to 2 because they are heavy little pods. But this palette…

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Well, it makes toting those aqua creams so much easier. And the color selection is right on. If you aren’t familiar with Make Up For Ever’s aqua cream, um…where have you been, ma’am? Aqua Creams are smudge-proof cream eye shadows and they don’t budge, fade or flake. And by don’t budge, I mean these things are practically like temporary tattoos. The durability is insane. And they aren’t just ideal for cream eye shadows. In fact, I like using them more as eyeliners on the lower lashline. But I’m gettin’ carried away. Back to the palette…

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Make Up For Ever has given us 4 aqua creams: Black with Red Highlights, Black with Green Highlights, Black with Blue Highlights and Ivory. A high-quality double ended brush comes with the set as well. The compact is pretty, dainty and durable.

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The thing about aqua creams is they tend to dry out quickly if you don’t keep the top on them. And I mean, their tops have to be secured tightly. One of my favorite aqua creams recently dried out because I didn’t close the top well enough. It broke my heart. But Make Up For Ever thought about this and so each aqua cream has its own little top.

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It’s a genius idea, really. You can use one cream without exposing all of the others. And just like the aqua creams that are housed in regular packaging, these are just as wonderful. They are super creamy but dry almost instantly. In fact, if you intend to use these on the eyes, you have to work quickly. I’m talkin’ within seconds. I also find that not just any makeup remover can remove these kids. I usually have to pull out my heavy duty oil-based removers. But they’re fantastic nonetheless and these are so much fun to work with.

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Pretty, aren’t they? I think Make Up For Ever did a great job at providing us beauty junkies with shades that we could actually use. This is a Sephora-exclusive product and I’m pretty sure this won’t last forever so if you’re swooning, you may want to job on it with the ASAP-ness. You can grab it at Sephora and Sephora.com for $45.

Any aqua cream lovers in the house?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving

I’m so grateful for so many things. And I usually don’t need a day to think about ‘em. I make it my business to give thanks every day for my life, health, strength, family members, friends, employment, hobbies and then random things like blue skies, green grass, freedom of speech, blogging, Hello Kitty, glitter and charities.

Yep.

Happy Thanksgiving to my U.S. family and those everywhere else in the world who celebrates giving thanks. Oh! And what relevance do those bubbles have? None. I just really like ‘em. :cool: