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Summer Must-Have: Laura Mercier Matte Radiance Baked Powder

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lmbaked

Summer is all about bronzed, glowing skin. The only product needed to achieve this is Laura Mercier’s Matte Radiance Baked Powder. Available in four bronzing colors and one highlight, one is able to mimic the sun’s rays without the damage.

  • Highlight 01 – Golden nude
  • Bronze 01 – Fair to light skin tone
  • Bronze 02 – Light to medium skin tone
  • Bronze 03 – Medium skin tone
  • Bronze 04 – Tan to deep skin tone

Titled “Matte Radiance Baked Powder,” this product is far from the stark matte bronzers of the past. Laura Mercier’s Matte Radiance Baked Powder warms-up the skin revealing a healthy glow. No glitter or shimmer but a beautiful glowing sheen.

The ultra-smooth formula provides natural color with absolutley no orange tinge. The modern, multidimensional matte finish reveals a hint of soft luminosity and the sheer, buildable coverage lets you customize your glow.

Easy to apply, these bronzers leave skin looking naturally radiant. Coming from a bronzing addict – this is the most natural finish and color-range I have experienced. It instantly warms up the face and creates healthy looking skin.  Laura Mercier’s Matte Radiance Baked Powder is my in my top 10 Summer Must-Haves for 2013.

How To: Fresh Face

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fresh face

A fresh face is always in style. Let your inner beauty shine by enhancing your already-beautiful features – not covering them up. Channel that glow-y radiance and opt for an au naturale, fresh face.

NEEDED:

◊ Your Makeup Bag

HOW TO:

PERFECT THE SKIN:

Wash face with your favorite gentle exfoliator. This will help the makeup to blend easily. FavoriteDermalogica Daily Microfoliant.

MOISTURIZE & EVEN OUT SKIN TONE:

Keep skin hydrated with a sheer moisturizer. Try one with light reflecting properties – for a healthy radiance. Favorite: Dr. Jart+ Renewalist Melting Cream

To even out skin tone, grab your favorite – Tinted Moisturizer, Foundation, BB Cream or Mineral Powder – and apply. Choosing the product that provides your favorite finish on the skin – matte, dewy, satin or natural – your choice. Favorite: Jouer Luminizing Moisture Tint

Use a damp sponge to create a flawless finish. Favorite: Beauty Blender

CONCEAL FLAWS & HIGHLIGHT:

For visible breakouts and dark spots use a pigment-rich concealer. Dab, blend and build coverage in thin layers. Never use too much concealer, it will just accentuate problem areas. FavoriteMiracle Skin Transformer Treat & Conceal 

Concealing under-circles will instantly light-up the entire face. If you have very dark undereye circles, first apply a salmon-toned color corrector. Favorite: Giorgio Armani Master Corrector

With a luminizing pen dot product under the eye and blend downwards. A luminizing pen brings light and radiance to the skin. It immediately erases any signs of fatigue, and brightens the complexion. This product can then be used as a highlighter on the cheekbones, brow bones and cupids bow. FavoriteYSL Touche Éclat

BRONZE & BLUSH:

Warm-up the skin with a light dusting of your favorite bronzer. Place only where the sun would naturally hit the skin. Temples, cheekbones, a little on the nose and under the jawline for contour. Favorite: Edward Bess Ultra Luminous Bronzer

Choose your favorite cream blush. Cream blushes in warm peaches and pinks gives skin a natural, subtle flush. Place on the apples of the cheeks and blend. Favorite: Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Petal Pink

POWDER:

If your skin gets shiny, follow with an oil-absorbing powder. Use only in the T-Zone area. This step can be skipped for those with dry or normal skin. Favorite: Laura Mercier Universal Setting Powder

If you find that you’ve over-powdered, take a tiny bit of light moisturizer, rub it between your palms, and then lightly press your palms onto your cheeks. This will bring back a bit of life to the skin.

BROWS:

Defined arches frame the face, pulling your features into focus. Make sure the brows are groomed and tweezed. Brush and fill them in sparingly with a brow pencil. Favorite: Anastasia Brow Wiz

EYES:

Apply a cream eyeshadow one shade lighter than lid color to the eyelid. Set with a matching eyeshadow and apply this eyeshadow to the inner corner of the eyes. This color can be matte or shimmer – your choice. Favorites: MAC Soft Ochre Paint Pot & MAC Eyeshadow in Vanilla

Then apply a soft warm brown eyeshadow to the crease area to contour the eye. Using the same soft brown eyeshadow, apply along the lower lashes – blending to ensure no hard edges. This can also be done with your bronzer. Favorite: Urban Decay Single Eyeshadow in Naked

TIGHTLINE:

For extra definition, tightline the eyes with your favorite eyeliner, gel liner, or liquid liner. How-To Tightline Post: HERE.

To make eyes look brighter and wide-awake, apply a nude colored eyeliner to the bottom inner rim.  Favorite: Tarte emphasEYES Inner Rim Brightener

LASHES:

Defined lashes are essential, even for a no-makeup look, you can forfeit shadow and liner, but never mascara. Curl eye lashes and apply two coats of mascara to the top lashes. For an extra boost, use a flat eyeliner brush to grab a bit of mascara from the wand and apply to just the roots of the bottom lashes. Favorite: Fairy Drops Scandal Queen

LIPS:

To get a pretty “your lips but better” look – choose a lipstick, stain, balm or liner that matches your lips perfectly. Press the color into your lips with your fingertip rather than applying it directly from the bullet. Concentrate it in the center and blend out. Favorite: Fresh Sugar Passion Tinted Lip Treatment

Four Favorites: Red Lipstick

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As the seasons change, the reach for a red lipstick grows closer. Unfortunately, many women are scared of scarlet. I believe there is a simple adjustment period or rite of passage, when wearing a bright lip. Just like anything else, to diverge from our comfort zone is an uncomfortable feeling. Try this: When home alone, cleaning house, reading a book, watching television – apply your bright lip and test-drive for the day. Let your eyes adjust to the unfamiliar look and I promise it won’t be so shocking next time.

Tips on Application: HOW TO: PERFECT RED LIPS

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Chanel Rouge Coco in Gabrielle: My all-time favorite. A bright blue-based red with glossy sheen. The Rouge Cocos’ are extremely moisturizing and allow you to wear both a sheer or heavy red lip.

NARS Semi Matte Lipstick in Jungle Red: NARS best-seller, Jungle Red is bright and bold. If you want to commit to a “Gwen Stefani/Rita Hayworth” red lip – this one’s for you.

YSL Rouge Volupt in #18 Red Taboo: Cool-toned red with a hint of raspberry. The Rouge Volupt lipsticks are comfortable and light on the lips. Extremely pigmented, long-lasting, uber-creamy and incredibly glossy.

Tom Ford Lip Color in Scarlet Rouge: The classic brick red. For those still uncomfortable wearing the bright lip – this is your training wheels. Deep and luxurious – the color is beautiful and sophisticated – the formula is hydrating and long-lasting.

Tried & Tested: Bobbi Brown BB Cream SPF 35

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The newest BB Cream to hit our counters is Bobbi Brown BB Cream SPF 35. Exclusive to Nordstroms, the formula combines moisturizer, skincare, foundation and SPF into one.

Features & Benefits: Water-attracting molecules boost hydration. Light-reflecting pearls brighten dull skin. Botanical extracts and caffeine reduce discoloration and redness. Pore-reducing peptides minimize fine lines. Broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection and antioxidants fend off future damage.

Bobbi Brown’s BB Cream SPF 35 is available in five shades: Extra Light, Fair, Light, Medium and Medium to Dark. I was certainly intrigued by this, due to the fact that Bobbi Brown Cosmetics are primarily yellow-based shades. Many BB Cream (especially asian brands) are based on cooler-tones, such as pinks and greys.

As I sampled the different shades, I was persuaded by a sweet Bobbi Brown representative to try the darkest shade, Medium to Dark. This shade looks quite dark, almost bronzer-like. But, I took her advice and purchased.

APPLICATION: Smooth and easy to apply. Goes on quite dry, but feels nice and extremely light on the skin. (Unless you have very oily skin, a moisturizer is needed in addition to this BB Cream.)

COVERAGE: Sheer.

FINISH: Skin appears matte with a subtle sheen. Very healthy-looking. However, like most BB Creams, after a couple hours the oils will come-out and skin will look too glowing. A finishing powder is recommended.

COLOR: Initial application, the color appeared too dark. Let dry and after a couple minutes, the color adapts to the skin and the color is perfect. It might be a smidgen too dark – but I am loving the subtle-tan look for summer.

VERDICT: Like many of the US BB Creams, this is much like a tinted moisturizer. But, I love the finish it leaves on the skin and the feeling is remarkably lightweight. For a high-SPF product, this cream wears like you have nothing on. The shade choices are great and warm-up the complexion beautifully. Leaves skin looking fresh and healthy. A great option for the summer months – SPF, lightweight, easy.

(When testing these BB Creams, before deciding on a shade, I suggest waiting at least 5 minutes for the color to oxidize and adapt to your skin tone.)

For other BB Cream reviews:

Dior Hydra Life BB Cream

Boscia BB Cream

Healthy Glow: Kevyn Aucoin – The Pure Powder Glow in Myracle

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Radiant, youthful-looking skin is just a brush stroke away with Kevyn Aucoin’s The Pure Powder Glow in Myracle.

Formulated with Aucoin’s signature finely milled powders, The Pure Powder Glow blends seamlessly and lasts all day. The hot pink hue is completely matte, pigment-rich and beautifully shocking. If applied with a light-hand, it will create a soft, more ethereal look. If applied with a heavy-hand, it will create a more vibrant, radiant glow.

Myracle is designed to work on all skin tones and looks amazing all-year-long. It will add life to bronzed skin in the summer and enhance a natural flush to fair skin in the winter.

For an instant cheek lift, place your blush brush at the highest point of your cheekbone and apply color in a circular motion. It’s a Myracle!

Spring Palette: Laura Mercier Lingerie Eye & Cheek Palette

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The limited-edition Laura Mercier Lingerie Eye & Cheek Palette is the perfect vehicle to transition into Spring. This warm, neutral palette features six eye colors and two cheek colors that effectively create a multitude of different looks.

The eyeshadows are extremely soft, pigmented and include all finishes: Luster, Sateen, Matte. The blushes appear a bit shocking but apply quite sheer. The formula is buildable and can be used separately or blended together to create a beautiful peachy-pink glow.

This is a great palette to add to anyone’s collection. Perfect for brides, travel or simply everyday, the warm tones will complement any skintone.

Included:

Eye Color: Buff Pearl (Luster), Tawny Apricot (Sateen), Rich Cocoa (Matte), Pale Pink (Matte), African Violet (Luster), Black Plum (MatteCheek Color: Rose Desire, French Peach


Ridge Filler Benefits: Deborah Lippmann

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Deborah Lippmann Ridge Filler

Once your nails form ridges, you will unfortunately have them forever. They are caused by genetics, trauma and aging. Using a ridge filler as a base coat can help repair and make them less noticeable.

When applying a ridge filler, the silica and silk fibers fill-in ridges to create a smooth foundation for nail polish to hold on to. It creates long-lasting manicures and forms an amazing base.

When wearing dark-colored nail polish, it is a difficult task not to stain the cuticles. When applying a ridge filler, it forms a pocket for the nail polish to adhere to. This “cupping” ensures perfect application that won’t stain the cuticles.

Most ridge fillers, like the Deborah Lippmann, are an opaque, off-white matte color. When using this prior to applying any nail polish, the color will be true and more vibrant. In the past, I have used a white base coat for this reason, I have now found that using a ridge filler provides more natural benefits.

Lastly, this ridge filler by Deborah Lippmann looks great on it’s own. Deborah Lippmann, manicurist to the stars, has used this ridge filler in many fashion shows and events. It provides a modern-matte natural nail look.

Get Naked! Urban Decay Naked Palette

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Urban Decay Naked Palette

Everyday makeup couldn’t be easier with Urban Decay’s Naked Palette. Great for back to school, this palette contains every shade needed for neutral makeup looks.

This palette arrived for Fall 2010 and flew off the shelves. Now available as a staple in Urban Decay’s collection, the Naked Palette can be found wherever the brand is sold.

Urban Decay Naked Palette contains twelve shades, ten with shimmer or glitter and two matte. The two matte shades, Naked (beige-brown) and Buck (dark beige-brown) are two of the best shadows I have ever used. They can perform as eyeshadow, contour or even to fill-in light to medium colored brows.

Each of the twelve shades are soft, buttery and richly pigmented. Shades range from delicate champagnes and warm golds to rich chocolates and dark charcoals. The colors are universally flattering and can can be used on all skintones.

Included with the palette is a mini Urban Decay Primer Potion and a pro-quality “Good Karma” eyeshadow brush. This is an essential palette to have in your collection. With twelve beautiful neutral shades to choose from there are hundreds of looks that can be created.

Liner Longevity: Stila Smudge Stick

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Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Liner

If you are looking for eye liner with staying-power, look no further. Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eye Liners are long-lasting, waterproof and do not budge.

Available in eight shades, these eyeliners are vibrantly pigmented and easy to apply. The texture is creamy and smooth as they glide onto the lids. The colors are intense and vivacious, with some that contain shimmer – others matte.

At IMATS (International Makeup Artists Tradeshow) this weekend, I swatched every color on my hand. Throughout the day, after testing other products and wiping them off, these eyeliners survived. Driving home (picture), the Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eye Liners edured the entire day.

How To: Contour w/ Make Up For Ever Sculpting Kit

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Make Up For Ever Sculpting Kit

Make Up For Ever Sculpting Kit is a palette of two complementary powders, dark and light, that help contour, sculpt and correct the face structure.

Contouring provides definition to the face by accentuating and/or minimizing features. By simply adding shadows, which create dimension, one can sculpt cheekbones, thin/lengthen/shorten the nose and/or make face look thinner.

Needed:

  • Angled Brush
  • A dark matte powder or cream (2 shades darker than skintone)
  • A light matte powder or cream (1-2 shades lighter than skintone)

1. In order to find the contours of the face – make a fishy-face.

2. See diagram and apply where dark shade is placed. The diagram is for placement purposes only. Do not just draw a streak of color down the cheek. Blend…Blend…Blend…

3. See diagram and apply where highlighter is placed. Blend…Blend…Blend…

Contouring all of these areas is not necessary on everyone. Each face structure is different. Find the problem areas you would like to correct and go from there.

Shine-Control: Sephora Bamboo Charcoal Blotting Papers

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Sephora Bamboo Charcoal Blotting Papers

In the hot summer months, humidity in the air causes skin to produce more oil, which results in a shiny complexion.

To keep shine under control try blotting papers. These thin sheets help to banish shine whithout disturbing makeup so skin will look fresh.

The Sephora Brand Bamboo Charcoal Blotting Papers are the best. Not only are they powder-free (most blotting papers are coated with powder, creating a “cakey” complexion) but they are made with Bamboo Charcoal, an ingredient that creates a high degree of absorbency and antibacterial properties.

Simply blot paper on the skin as needed and watch as oil dissipates, leaving skin matte. The bamboo charcoal ingredient make the papers gray in color, but leave no residue or tint on the face. The charcoal properties help to ward-off bacteria and keep pores clean.

The leopard-print packaging makes it easy to throw in your bag for on-the-go application. Don’t leave home without them.

Tried & Tested: Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush

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Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush

Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush is a nutrient-rich, fade-free, long-wearing cheek product.

The main ingredient, Amazonian clay, minimizes oil on the skin to keep the product in place. Its nutrient-rich formula, infused with Vitamins A, C and E fights free-radicals and protects from premature aging.

The Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush comes in an assortment of eight shades. From baby pink to strawberry red, the colors are strong and pigmented.  Some of the colors have a sparkly finish, while others take-on a more more matte finish. I have found that the matte finishes tend to be a bit chalky on the skin and prefer a more shimmery hue.

This blush is accurate in it’s 12-hour, long-wear promise. The color remained true throughout the day and survived in 75 degree heat.

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