Blog Archives

Nail Jelly: American Apparel Sheer Nail Lacquer

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American Apparel’s “Sheer” Nail Lacquer collection offers six beautifully bold glosses named after beloved California beaches. While the shades are uber vivid, they are sheer enough to layer, mix and match.

Moonlight Beach: royal blue

Redondo Beach: sky blue

Pacific Beach: turquoise

Zuma Beach: green/chartreuse

Manhattan Beach: fiery coral

Summerland Beach: light peach

The formula is thin but very pigmented. In about three coats – you can get full coverage. However, I love the one-two coats for a sheer jelly-like effect and sheer wash of color. Drying time is quick with a glossy finish. The formula has an average lifespan… a couple days – but chips are easily corrected with a brush-over as this polish is great for layering.

The new sheer lacquers are cruelty-free and available in retail American Apparel stores or online here.

Spring Sun: Illamasqua Cream Blusher in Zygomatic

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Illamasqua Cream Blushers. The most pigmented, creamy and long-lasting cream-based product I have used.

For my first purchase I decided to go a bit conservative. This was extremely difficult as there are so many tempting colors. I wanted a color I could wear everyday that would give a natural dewiness. Enter Zygomatic. A “naked pink brown” as described by Illamasqua. Subtle yet on the skin it creates the perfect pinkish tan glow like you have soaked up a little Spring sun.

This product blends beautifully and creates a healthy dewy finish. Use alone or as primer for your powder blushes. This will create even longer staying power.

Lastly… If you are thinking about trying an Illamasqua Cream Blusher – go to your nearest Sephora – as the color swatches on the websites are inaccurate.

Currently Coveting: Promise and Rude.

Pint-Sized Palette: Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette

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Launching in the US tomorrow, November 29th, is the Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette. This pint-sized palette features five matte shades and one demi-matte shade. Four of the six shades are new and exclusive to this palette.

Perfect for travel or on-the-go, this palette can fit in your wallet or purse. It contains six full-sized eyeshadows, which include: Venus (soft, off-white demi-matte), Foxy (very light yellow/beige matte), Walk of Shame (very light pinky nude matte), Naked 2 (rosy taupe matte), Faint (warm, dusty brown matte), and Crave (deepest, darkest brown/black matte).

Urban Decay’s matte eyeshadows are some of the best I have used. They are in no way chalky, powdery or dry but super silky, finely-milled and pigmented. They are also long-lasting and true-to-color.

Starting on November 29th the Naked Basics Palette will be available at Urban Decay, Sephora, Ulta and select Macy’s. If you love neutrals and nudes to create a subtle and dramatic definition, then you will love the Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette.

Rediscovered Rouge: NARS Madly

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While cleaning out my makeup collection I rediscovered NARS Blush in Madly. Described as a “warm soft-focus seashell pink,” in the pan – it appears very light and uninteresting. However, when applied, it creates a warm rosy/brown glow that instantly warms the complexion – any complexion. Madly works on all skin tones.

The finely-milled powder has excellent pay-off – like most NARS Blush. It is pigmented yet buildable. There is a subtle shimmer running through the formula, but it wears as a sheen rather than sparkle. It does not emphasize pores or imperfections and can look very natural.

Applied with a heavy hand, Madly can create a radiant bronzed look. Applied with a light hand, Maldly can create a soft romantic glow.

Rediscover treasures in your makeup collection.

Earth Tones: Dolce & Gabbana Stromboli Eyeshadow Quad

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Nothing reflects Fall like smoldering earth tones. My new favorite eyeshadow quad, Dolce & Gabbana Smooth Eye Color Quad in #130 Stromboli.

The eyeshadow quad consists of a light gold, a burnt sienna, a warm chocolate and a metallic charcoal. There are so many color combinations possible and each one compliments the other.

The texture of the finely-milled eyeshadows are creamy and buttery. Extremely pigmented and blend-able, so I recommend using a light hand when applying. These eyeshadows wear about six-eight hours before fading.

To get a smoldering earth tone eye look:

Apply the dark metallic charcoal close to the lash line and beneath the eye line. Then, blend the burnt sienna and warm chocolate hues in the crease for definition. Lastly, add the light gold to inner corner for a highlight.

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.

Neutral Duo: NARS Kalahari

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NARS Eyeshadow Duos are long-wearing and crease-resistant. They are beautifully pigmented and creamy to the touch. The Duos are available in a myriad of colors and textures and are always interestingly and uniquely paired.

While scouring NARS Eyeshadows, it is easy to focus primarily on the unusual bright colors. The neutral duos have a hard time competing. NARS Eyeshadow Duo in Kalahari is a great neutral option. It contains two very wearable color combinations, a shimmering bronze with peach undertones and a warm brown with taupe undertones.

Kalahari is available in NARS’ permanent collection. Worn together or alone, these shades are richly pigmented and can be applied sheer or built-up for a more dramatic effect. Used wet, these shadows also double as eyeliners.

Kalahari will flatter any eye color. The warm tones look amazing on dark and light skin tone and will reflect beautifully in the summer sun.

Summer Favorites: Blush

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In the summer, bright and vibrant shades of cheek color is a surefire way to look younger and healthy. Use these products to emphasize a tan, create a youthful flush or mimic a lit-from-within complexion.

Start by choosing the right shade for your skintone. To find your go-to blush shade, pinch your cheeks and then pick a color that mimics your natural flush. This trick will ensure that you’re choosing the most flattering color for your skin tone. If you have fair skin, try a cool pink. Medium skin looks great in vibrant apricot/peachy hues, and darker skin tones look radiant in fuchsia.

Cream blush is a great way to instantly look fresh and dewy. Although it’s staying powder is not the best, especially in higher temperatures, cream blush is a nice alternative for dry skin. To ensure staying power on oily skin, first prime the skin and then set with a powder blush or translucent powder. To apply cream blush, smile and lightly focus the blush onto the apples of your cheeks. Then blend softly back and up toward the hairline. If you apply too liberally, tone down heavy application by blotting the excess color with a clean makeup sponge. Or, use a sheer, luminizing powder to diffuse excess color. The blush then looks like it came from within the skin versus sitting on top of it.

FAVORITES:

Dior Rosy Glow Healthy Glow Awakening Blush: I am a sucker for these gimmicky products. However, this one is fantastic. The formula magically adjusts to your skin’s natural chemistry to create a universal shade. It produces an angelic pink glow that makes you look “lit-from-within.”

It Cosmetics Vitality Cheek Flush Powder Blush Stain in Peony: The most long-wearing powder blush I have tried. The waterproof formula mimics the lasting power and glow of a cheek stain with the easy application of a powder. Packed with anti-oxidants and anti aging properties, this blush gives new definition to a “healthy glow.”

Youngblood Crushed Mineral Blush in Rouge: These blushes are incredibly pigmented and easy to work with. They blend beautifully and last all-day. They feel lightweight on the skin and never settle into lines. A small amount goes a very long way, apply with a light hand for a sheer wash of color or add more for vibrant glowing skin.

Kevyn Aucoin The Pure Powder Glow in Myracle: Full Review HERE.

NARS Cream Blush in Cactus Flower: On trend for summer, this bright coral blush is beautiful on both the lips and cheeks. The velvety texture is extremely easy to blend and apply. Subtle gold shimmers hide in the coral to help create perfectly flushed, luminous skin.

BECCA Beach Tint in Guava: This is the perfect color for summertime. It resembles the act of playing in the sun a little too long. The water-resistant formula can be used on both the cheeks and lips. Produces the most natural-looking flush and smells like summer.

Urban Decay Afterglow Glide-On Cheek Tint in Quickie: A lightweight cream blush that does not pull or disrupt a base. It can be used on top of foundation, powder… anything. The formula is sheer but buildable. The staying power is not the best, but I am obsessed with this color. Quickie is a sheer bubble gum, electric, cotton candy pink. The minute it is applied, it creates instant youthfulness.

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


Holy Grail: Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Mascara

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Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Mascara is currently the best mascara I have ever used. Coming from a lunatic that has tested every imaginable mascara, this says a lot. As seen in Glow-T’s Best of 2011 post – I wanted to wait until I thoroughly tested this product to give an honest review. 

Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Mascara is all of your favorite lengthening/separating/volumizing mascaras rolled into one. The formula is smooth, weightless and incredibly pigmented. One coat is all that is needed for full/thick lashes, however, the build-able formula is capable of overly dramatic lashes without clumping (statement based on two thick coats). The wand’s handle is weighted, giving support for easy application. The brush is nothing special and on the larger size, but delivers intensely thick, black lashes.

The only criticism I have is the price. A $30 dollar mascara is hard to swallow with so many cheaper products on the market. In consideration, I purchased this mascara in the beginning of November and it is still going strong; no traces of dryness or emptiness.

Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Mascara is currently on my holy grail list. At this point, you would think I would never need to acknowledge another mascara again… You would think…

Glow-T Gift Guide: All-Natural

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Glow-T’s Gift Guide ends with all-natural gift ideas. Give the gift of products that support and promote a healthy lifestyle. All-natural, paraben-free, gluten-free and environmental-friendly items made from the finest ingredients.

From Red Apple Lipstick – a gluten-free, paraben-free and allergen-free lipstick that is incredibly pigmented, applies smoothly  and moisturizes lips with vitamin E and Shea butter – to – fun holiday gift sets filled with all-natural products. Here are a few ideas for the green girl in your life.

Melvita ~ Rose Nectar Gift Set: $55.00

Red Apple Lipstick ~ Gluten-Free Lipstick: $17.50

LUSH ~ Happy Christmas: $44.95

Skinbotanica ~ Pure Fiji Island Bliss Gift Pack – Starfruit: $44.00

Dermstore ~ Pevonia Botanica Your Skincare Solution Safe Sun Face & Body Pack: $46.00

Drugstore Find: Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter

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Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter

Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butters are Revlon’s newest lip creation. Currently available only on promotion at certain drugstores, these lip butters come in 20 amazing shades that are incredibly pigmented.

Formulated with, mango butter, shea butter and coconut butter, the gel formula naturally boost lip’s moisture which decreases the need for reapplication. The color is vibrant and glossy and the staying power is excellent.

These are my absolute favorite drugstore lipsticks at the moment. The reds are great for winter and the Lollipop shade is a fun and bright fuchsia shade.

Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butters will become part of the permanent collection, January 2012.

Matte Finish: Nars Pure Matte Lipsticks

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Nars Pure Matte Lipstick ~ Carthage

In lip products, matte textures tend to look more natural than shine and shimmer. This is especially true in photography and video. They also last longer on the lips and seldom feather.

Matte-textured lipsticks as well as long-wear can be incredibly drying on the lips. Nars Pure Matte Lipsticks contain mango butter that provide moisturizing properties to repair dryness and scaling. However, I would not constitute this as a moisturizing lip product, but increasingly better than others I have tested.

Nars Pure Matte Lipsticks are incredibly pigmented and provide amazing color pay-off. They are available in eleven shades from nude to full-bodied reds. Carthage is my current favorite, the most obnoxious hot pink.

Matte lipsticks are a great buy, the pigments are bright and bold and if a little shimmer or shine is needed, just add some gloss.

Tip: Avoid over-applying lipstick, the more you wear, the heavier it looks and the quicker it will wear off.

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.

Road to Flawless Skin: Kevin Aucoin The Sensual Skin Enhancer

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Kevin Aucoin The Sensual Skin Enhancer

Kevin Aucoin’s Sensual Skin Enhancer is a one-stop product for creating flawless skin. The road of achieving perfect skin is a long-one and may need a considerable number of different items… concealer, powder, base. The Sensual Skin Enhancer erases the need for all of these items and paves the way to perfect skin.

This Skin Enhancer can be used as a concealer; spot and undereye, foundation, tinted moisturizer and highlighter. (To use as a highlighter, simply choose a color one shade lighter than your actual skin tone).

The formula is extremely pigmented, and the texture consists of a heavy cream. However, when applied onto the skin, it feels lightweight, non-greasy and blends beautifully.

I apply this product by adding a bit to my favorite moisturizer (a little goes a long way). This concoction creates the perfect tinted moisturizer, in which it lets me decide how much coverage my skin needs. Sometimes I need to add more, sometimes less. Skin changes day-to-day, breakouts and such, The Sensual Skin Enhancer puts you in the drivers seat on the road to flawless skin.

Tropical Punch: Cargo Blush Key Largo

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Cargo Blush Key Largo

Cargo Blush in Key Largo is a bright tropical punch shade. This matte blush adds a vivid pop of color to the cheeks and instantly brightens the face.

Key Largo is a bold coral tone with some pink notes. The silky blush is extremely pigmented and blends nicely. This color can be worn alone for a bright flushed look or with bronzer to emphasize a summer glow.

Key Largo can be used on both the cheek and eye area. Brush a bit of this color on the lid or use as a liner and keep the rest of the eye area bare.

Cargo blushers come in a large silver tin containing 0.31 oz of product. They contain aloe, vitamin E and antioxidants to nourish the skin. The matte finish is a great option for those with large pores (shimmer tends to exaggerate the size).

This season experiment with fun bright colors and add a bit of punch to your look.

Stain Sealer: Smashbox Limitless Lip Stain & Color Seal Balm

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Smashbox Limitless Lip Stain & Color Seal Balm

A general reaction to most lip stain products is dry and/or tight lips. Smashbox Limitless Lip Stain & Color Seal Balm remedies this problem by adding a moisturizing balm that seals-in color onto the double-ended marker.

The stains are extremely pigmented and bleed onto the lips smoothly. The vivid colors are available in six shades; Berry (dark raspberry), Cinnamon (red brown), Guava (coral orange), Nude (pink beige), Petal (baby pink) and Sangria (deep wine).

The Color Seal Balm glides effortlessly onto the lips and feels very refreshing. It matches the stain color providing a glossy effect on the lips. The balm can also be used on its own for a sheer wash of color.

Smashbox Limitless Lip Stain & Color Seal Balm is truly a revolutionary product. I recently compared this product to Revlon’s Just Bitten Lip Stain & Balm. The pigmentation and lasting abilities the Smashbox product provides is exceedingly superior, almost incomparable.

Exotic Eyes: Estée Lauder’s Island Oasis Eye Shadow Palette

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Estée Lauder’s Island Oasis Eye Shadow Palette

Estée Lauder’s Island Oasis Eye Shadow Palette screams summer beauty. The palette provides six beautiful shades that reflect sandy beaches and crystal blue water.

The richly pigmented shades are very luxurious and creamy. They apply with a sheer metallic finish but can be intensified by building the color. The palette is arranged with both cool and warm tones; a dusty green, glittery gold, mediterranean blue, rose gold, deep red bronze and shimmering stone. These shadows can be worn together in a multiple of different looks or applied alone for a single pop of color.

Palettes are perfect for summer travel, so many options packed easily away in a makeup bag. They provide the consumer with color-choices they would not usually buy which motivates experimentation. However used, this palette will provide the sensation of an exotic vacation.

Punch of Color: Deborah Lippmann: Girls Just Want to Have Fun

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Deborah Lippmann

 

Deborah Lippmann, Girls Just Want to Have Fun, nail lacquer is a creamy coral/pink-colored varnish required for summer sandals. Named after the popular Cyndi Lauper tune, released in 1983, Lippmann developed this shade from 80’s inspiration.

Deborah Lippmann nail lacquers are innovative and on trend each season. The formula is velvety and creamy and applies like a dream. The colors are pigmented and intense, in which one to two coats is all that is needed. The performance of these nail lacquers are adequate, manicure lasts about five days.

This vibrant nail polish compliments all skintones. The coral/pink-hue accentuates the skin instantly, fabricating a sun-kissed glow. The bold punch of color in Deborah Lippmann Girls Just Want to Have Fun nail laquer is universally flattering and essential for Summer 2011.

 

Dynamic Duo: Per-fekt Cheek Perfection Gel Duo

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Per-fekt Cheek Perfection Gel Duo

The Per-fekt Cheek Perfection Gel Duo uses two products to create radiant skin. The two different shades, Blushed and Bronzed, instantly enhance the cheeks appearance.

The formula consists of a gel-like texture that smooths beautifully over the skin to create a flawless canvas. Silicone-based, this silky gel reduces the appearance of redness and discoloration, enlarged pores, fine lines and shine. The formula also contains Niacin (Vitamin B3) which helps increase circulation, Caffeine, Vitamin A and E, antioxidants that protect from free radicals.

The Per-fekt Cheek Perfection Gel Duo provides both a bronzer and blush product. The colors of these products are quite intimidating. The bronzer is a dark green-based brown and the blusher, a deep rosy red. I prefer to mix the two products to create a warmer pink-flushed cheek. A drop of product is all that is needed for application, the gels are extremely pigmented but blend easily.

These products are not the simplest to apply, some precision and control is needed. I prefer applying the product with a brush because it renders more control. I use a dense contour brush (MAC 109), and stipple the product on the skin in circular motions.

The Cheek Perfection Duo can also be used on the body, try a little bronzer on the décollage for a sun-kissed appearance. When applied Per-fektly, these products are a great option for the cheeks, however, if not heedful it can end up a duo-disaster.

 

 

 

 

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