Friday, July 30, 2010

Freaky Footwear Friday!

What a dream for make up addicts worldwide! I love the shoe.....and the fact that I will be able to save some space in my handbag by carrying my lipstick on my heel!

Did You Know.....


Did you know that MUFE's single shadows have pans that are easily detachable?

I recently discovered this!

All you do is use your nail (or a sharp object) and from the top (carefully) pull out the pan. It is attached by a magnet and comes out easily.

Cool if you decide to depot and organize all your colors in one pan!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Prepping Lips For Lipstick

I just wanted to share a tip with you ladies out there. Before I begin putting on my makeup, I usually put a little Vaseline or lip balm on my lips. This gives the product time to soak in my lips and do it's thing as well as prep's my lips for smoother application and longer lasting lipstick.

My lipstick goes on last after I put on my clothes because I had an accident while putting on a white blouse once - I needed to do a quick change and that really upset me. So after that incident, I always put my lippie on last.

Just before I put on my lipstick, I use a tissue to pat off the excess vaseline or lip balm on my lips and then proceed to line my lips and fill it in with lip color.

Do you already do this, dear readers?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

MAC for Rodarte - Why I Will Not Be Part Of This!

I am so ashamed to say that I am now knowledgeable about Juarez through M.A.C – clearly, M.A.C is not an article detailing shameful history but rather a make-up line!

Thank you M.A.C for bringing this terrible injustice to my attention – however, that is all you managed to do for I will not be purchasing anything from this shameful collection. Using those products would make me feel dirty.

Whats all the fuss about?
Juarez is an impoverished Mexican factory town notorious for the number of women between the ages of 12 and 22 who have been raped and murdered with little or no response from police. Most of the young women are employees at the border town’s factories, called maquiladoras, and disappeared on the way to or from work.

Here is the link to an article published about the issue in Lucky Magazine: http://womenofjuarez.egenerica.com/content/view/10/25/. One thing that jumped out at me from reading the many other articles was that the ladies had to show the owners their soiled pads or tampons every month to prove they were not pregnant. There are many more articles about this if you are interested.  Please do a search on 'Juarez', 'femicides' or 'maquiladoras' and you will be bombarded with an eye opening view on the issue.

Who is Rodarte?
Rodarte is a brand of clothing and accessories founded by Kate and Laura Mulleavy. Rodarte's work has always been influenced by the macabre things in life (horror films etc). These two sisters took a road trip through Texas and the town of Juarez was the inspiration for the collection! 



WHAT RODARTE SAID ON THE MAC AND RODARTE COLLECTION - THEIR OFFICIAL STATEMENT
"Our makeup collaboration with M•A•C developed from inspirations on a road trip that we took in Texas last year, from El Paso to Marfa. The ethereal nature of this landscape influenced the creative development and desert palette of the collection. We are truly saddened about injustice in Juarez and it is a very important issue to us. The M•A•C collaboration was intended as a celebration of the beauty of the landscape and people in the areas that we traveled."


WHAT MAC COSMETICS INITIALLY SAID ON THE MAC RODARTE COLLECTION - THEIR OFFICIAL STATEMENT
"We understand that product names in the M•A•C Rodarte collection have offended some of our consumers and fans. This was never our intent and we are very sorry. We are listening carefully to the comments posted and are grateful to those of you who have brought your concerns to the forefront of our attention. M•A•C will give a portion of the proceeds from the M•A•C Rodarte collection to help those in need in Juarez. We are diligently investigating the best way to do this. Please be assured that we will keep you posted on the details regarding our efforts."

Sorry ain't gonna cut it.

The E/S you see below was initially called Sleepwalker (M.A.C has comitted to changing it's name now), in reference to the ladies who worked in shifts at the maquiladora.

I do not want streaks of blood on my eyes.


After a severe backlash on the blogoshpere M.A.C re-issued another statement saying :-

We understand that product names in the M·A·C Rodarte collection have offended our consumers and fans. This was never our intent and we are very sorry. We continue to listen carefully to the comments we have received and have the following plans to address concerns:
•We are committed to donating $100,000 to a non-profit organization that has a proven, successful track-record helping women in need and that can directly improve the lives of women in Juarez in a meaningful way.
•We are changing the product names in the M·A·C Rodarte collection.
As we have done in the past, please be assured that we will communicate details regarding our progress in this matter.


At least this furore has put a spotlight on the Juarez issue, which I am SURE was M.A.C's intention in the first place! I hope something good comes out of all this......

100th Post! Yay!

My dear readers,

This is my 100th post and I am well and truly proud of myself!

I would like to thank each and everyone of you for stopping by and reading my two cents' worth. To those who have followed......I do so appreciate it.

I am humbled to be a part of the blogosphere and I have learnt so much and am still learning from all of you.

Much love,
Jacqui

Review: The Hayan Collagen Essence Masks

I recently purchased The Hayan Korean masks and tried two of them in the past weeks. I bought a few so I picked the pomegranate enriched collagen essence mask first because I love the fruit and was looking forward to the smell. The picture below was taken just before I put the mask on.

My first impression was the fact that it was soaked with the essence to the point of dripping! So I carefully opened the mask and when I looked at it, I was surprised at how much bigger than my face it was. But I guess since these don't come in sizes, then it must be one size fits all.

The scent was a pleasant floral smell but not a true pomegranate smell. I put it on and found it a bit difficult to adjust to my face. Mind you this was my first time with a sheet mask like this so I found it a little fiddly. As you can see below, the mask did not sit on my face smoothly. I put this down to my technique of putting on the mask - I guess I should not have just slapped it on. I was too lazy to readjust it tho'! However, I managed to get it on and then lay down for 15 minutes to allow the essence to do it's magic on my skin.

When time was up, I took off the mask and expected to see something different but my face looked the same, the only thing I noticed was that it was soft and bouncy. Good right? Also, because the mask was still wet with essence, I used the excess on my neck and arms.

The soft and bouncy effect did not last till the next day and everything was back to normal by then. I was not truly impressed, I must say.

A week later I gave another mask a try and this time I chose the Pearl Collagen Essence Mask. I can only guess that this has pearl powder mixed in the essence because the ingredients are all in Korean.


This time I prepped my face by spritzing on some minerals and vitamin infused spray by Youngblood (review coming soon). I then applied the mask carefully, beginning at my forehead and then working my way down towards my chin. The tricky part for me was getting the mask to sit properly around the eyes and nose. But this time I got it right and settled down for half and hour. The instructions say that you should use the mask for about 15 to 30 minutes so I decided to keep it on for half an hour.

The results were much better this time. In the thirty minutes (I managed to shape, buff and shine my nails AND watch t.v at the same time!) the essence soaked into my face well and when it was time to take the mask off, I noticed that it was almost dry. Much better absorption than the first one I tried. This was caused I am sure, by keeping it on longer and allowing for the essence to properly soak in. My face looked clearly brighter, more refreshed and hydrated. This lasted well into the next day.

My conclusion is that in order to get the most out of these sheet masks, use them for at least half an hour and apply the mask onto the face well so it sits smoothly and the whole face can benefit from the essence it contains. I also rubbed the mask all over my arms and legs with what was left and woke up to softer skin.

Verdict:- Buy only if you have spare change and don't expect the results to last long. Keep using on a regular basis to maintain hydrated skin.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Tip! Which Lotion Comes First?

As consumers we are bombarded with lots of lotions and potions that each claim to perform some miracle on our faces and with agressive advertising we always get the impression that every product that comes out is "THE " product to have! I suspect that most of us don't have the three basic products - cleanser, toner moisturizer but rather a whole host of products in each category and if you are cofused as to which order to use them then do I have a tip for you.

Read on!

Always, always CLEANSE and EXFOLIATE first. The only way to start is with a clean face. If your face is not clean, then you are likely to clog your pores further by adding and layering products on your face.

STEP 1a: CLEANSING
Cleansing is also a crucial step. Check your cleansing routine. Some years ago, I discovered that I was not cleansing the area close to my hairline well. I began having breakouts in this area and upon investigation I realized that my cleansing routine was wrong.

Start by spashing some water on your face. This is important to allow your cleanser to mix with the water and begin its work. Then squeeze or pour out a decent measure of cleanser on the tips of your wet fingers and rub well to produce lather. Once this is done, start working the cleanser on your face. I begin with my t-zone (my nose and forehead) and then move to my cheeks and then all around my eye area, lip area, near the hairline, close to the earlobes and under my chin as well as my neck. Gently rub in circular movements for a minute or two.

Once you complete this step, splash your face with water and focus on your hairline, around the eyes, and on the neck to remove all traces of cleanser. You are done once you gently pat a towel on your face to remove the moisture.

STEP 1b: EXFOLIATING
I usually exfoliate once a week or if I do have time, at night while I am showering. This helps deep cleanse the face and remove stuff like dead skin cells. Exfoliating also reveals the freshest layer of skin on your face and if done well, you should notice a brighter and slightly fairer face after. Too  much exfoliating is not good as it can lead to redness blotchy skin. So take it easy on this one.

STEP 2: TONING
This is an optional step for some people and always comes AFTER cleansing. At this point, your face is still a little damp.

Take a piece of cotton wool - they come in squares or circles in packs and are really cheap. I personally prefer the circular ones because I feel they are thicker. Splash a few drops of toner on your cotton piece and sweep over face concentrating on areas around the hairline and close to the earlobes. Don't be surprised to find some last traces of makeup on the cotton.

Toning will tighten up pores and preps the skin to receive all other products. If you don't have large pores and oily skin (lucky you!) then by all means skip this step.


STEP 3: SERUMS AND TREATMENTS
If you have a serum then now is the time to put it on. Rub your fingers together to warm it up and then pump or pour out a little of the product on them. Rub your fingers together to spread the product and gently swipe on your face. Let it set and settle for a few seconds. Give your skin time to absorb the product before you move on to the next step.

STEP 4: MOISTURIZING  
A good tip is to buy a moisturizer with an SPF factor of at least 15. What is an SPF you ask? SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor.

A sunscreen with an SPF of 15 filters 92% of the UVB. Put another way, a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 will delay the onset of a sunburn in a person who would otherwise burn in 10 minutes to burn in 150 minutes. The SPF 15 sunscreen allows a person to stay out in the sun 15 times longer. (Taken from About.com - dermatology)


UVB (or ultra violet) rays are bad and small amounts of these are emitted from your computer screen and flourescent lighting too (surprised right?!). Wearing a moisturizer with SPF will give you some measure of protection from this.

Again, with moisturizer, get some on your fingers and rub between fingers to dispers and then apply on your face. Do also factor in some for your neck....this is often overlooked and will begin to show signs of ageing later in life so better start taking care of it now!

So there you have it. Hope this was useful!

Stage 'Keep It Clean' Brush Cleaner - My first Video!

I recently purchased a Brush Cleaner from Stage called 'Keep it Clean' and I did a video to show you how to use it. Please click on the video below.....


video


I would appreciate it if you could let me know in the comments if this was useful. I may be inspired to do more......

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Idea! Storing De-Potted Lipstick

I certainly had a very productive weekend! I spent some time de-potting what seemed like a million lipsticks into a cheap container that not only saved me a ton of space for more purchases (big smile) but also gave forgotten purchases a new lease of life.


The container I used to organize my lippies is a pillbox which I nicked from my dad! He loves organizing things and this is how he organizes his medication - I guess I got the organizing gene from him! I asked dad for one of these pillboxes because he has quite a few - "just in case I need an extra" he says.

I realized that there were many lippies that were lying at the back of the drawer and I thought that this would bring most of it together in one palette and allow me to pull it out and have a look at what takes my fancy for the day. I know the box does not look posh and fancy - it is quite basic - but this is my personal collection and it works for me, so thats why I think it is a great idea. If you can get your hands on a box that is clear without the days of the week printed on them in English as well as Braille then all the better.


I used a long pen knife to de-pot the lipstick right from the bottom (because I hate wastage) and then carefully dropped the lip color into the different compartments. I then popped the row out and labelled each color with the brand and color. As you can see, each row of lipstick pops out of the main tray and I quite like the idea that I could pop out a tray and take it away whilst travelling too.

In order to use these lippies, you will need a good lip brush - just open the compartments and have a go! It is easier to mix colors to create a unique color this way too.



Most importantly, do get a container that has compartments which snap shut firmly to avoid any nasty accidents. As for the labels at the back, I used labels which I bought in a pack (these are sold cheaply at stationery stores). I use these labels for all my spices, baking ingredients as well as for the hundred little things that the children have so I always have these about the house. I am a bit anal when it comes to labelling because I also have a huge battery operated Dymo (labelling tool) that I use when I organize stuff! Remember, all pictures are clickable if you want to see them a little more clearly!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Avon's Soft Mousse Blush in Apricot Flush

I have recently fallen in love with this little wonder in a pot! I bought this ages ago and threw it in my vortex of cosmetics and it sort of sat at the bottom of that pit feeling very lonely until I found it. I have worn this several times since it resurfaced as you can see from the defiled product picture above!

It's called Apricot Flush and its a sweet shade that gives dusky skin a healthy flush. I swatched it on the back of my hand here for you to see.




Very pretty shade. Soft and seems to turn into very fine powder once it is on skin. It is totally buildable. If you use your fingers, which I intially did, the color tends to be a little on the heavy side and getting an even wash of color over my cheeks was not easy to achieve. I tried using MAC's 188 brush (small enough to get it into the pot and swirl for color) and the results were much better. The color applied very sheer and I was able to apply it evenly as well as build the color. Much easier to control where the color went compared to using my fingers. This is my personal opinion though because some ladies are more adept at application of makeup with their fingers.  

When I first purchased it, the mousse blush seemed slightly more softer but I guess that keeping it for quite some time has dried it out ever so slightly. When I took out this blusher, I expected it to have dried out completely thus rendering it useless. I was pleasantly surprised.

Avon is offering the Soft mousse blush in two shades - Apricot Flush and Peach Mousse. Apricot Flush has a  cool rosy undertone and Peach Mousse has a slight orange undertone to it which makes it very wearable and suitable for a wide variety of skintones.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Ellefar 9 Color Shadow Palette From Daiso

Wow Daiso! I walked in to the One Utama outlet last Sunday and it was packed to the brim with people browsing through the racks of stuff they have there! There seems to be something for everyone and I bet you will never come away without buying something! Everything from cosmetics to kitchenware is in one store and all for RM5 flat!

See what I bought.......this is Ellefar Slim Color Pact - 9 Color Eye Shadow Palette called Sweet. I was drawn to this because I thought the colors were adorable and versatile enough to create several looks as well as being useful to take along while travelling. I must admit though that I was sceptical as to whether the color payoff would be good. But for RM5 who can complain right?


Have a look at these shimmery colors up close. The palette does not name each color so what you see is what you get. My favourites are the from left to right at the top, first row, third color - its a salmon pink. In the second row, I love the rich chocolate brown and in the bottom row, the buttercup yellow, right, is also quite delicious.

I must say that these colors are fairly pigmented which you can see from the swatches below. You will see a little powdery fallout but it is quite minimal. All colors except the chocolate brown were swatched once. In order to get the chocolate brown to show up properly, I needed to swatch twice.

The three pinks look similar but are ever slightly different if you look closely. The white (top row, middle color) looks like it has a little blue undertone in the picture which really surprised me because it looks a little pinky in the pan. This could be because this color is flanked by two pinks on either side. The green and blue at the bottom are quite exciting colors and I cannot wait to experiment with them some time soon.

I tried a look with three colors:- I used the cream (middle row, right) all over my lids and used a little on the brow bone. I then used the salmon color (top row, right) over the cream on the lids to create a subtle wash and then used the chocolate brown (middle row, left) at the corner and along the crease line. The cream and the salmon turned out quite nicely but I found it a little hard to get the chocolate brown to show up clearly. I did not put on more shadow as I was in a rush to get to the office. That is the trouble darker skinned women encounter - some colors are harder to wear than others. Its something I am working on by watching online videos and looking at tutorials. I will try this again soon and see if I can get the brown to show a little more.

I must say this is an interesting palette and if you want a little fix to appease the inner shopping queen in you, then head on over to Daiso - they have other little goodies too!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Smashbox Photofinish Lid Primer - An Experiment

I had been mourning the fact that my eye colors just did not pop the way it does on some ladies. The colors looked lacklustre and lacked the 'oomph' that I was after. Which is why I purchased Smashbox Photofinish Lid Primer - many bloggers have reviewed different eye primers and the verdict seemed to suggest that eye colors would literally reach out and grab you if you put on a primer first.

This primer comes in one shade and melts into skin to provide a base for eye shadow. Below is a swatch of the color on the back of my hand:


I only recently discovered the power of primers and primers should be used over your moisturizer to keep your make up looking fresh, vibrant and long lasting - so  important to working women like me because I don't have time to check my make up every so often.

So I embarked on a little experiment to see if the use of a primer would brighten eyeshadow colors. The results, will shock you! Read on!

The Lid Primer comes with a doe foot applicator that dispenses just enough product for both eyelids. Just a
swipe of the applicator on each lid and then smooth the product all over the top lid. The product is very creamy and blends well.


 

I applied a color that was bright on its own and expected the color to really pop. This is NYX Ultra Pearl Mania Loose Pearl Shadow in True Purple Pearl. I applied primer on only one eyelid and the other was just a little loose powder.

Can you tell which lid has the primer on? You can't? Really?



Well, this is the lid WITHOUT the primer...... it's the lid on your left if you refer to the picture above

And this is the lid WITH primer........the lid on your right



My eyesight is not failing me right? I expected this experiment to really blow my socks off and it did........for the wrong reasons!

I expected one eyelid color to pop and the other to look lacklustre.....that did not happen. Both eye's look the same (one with a slightly thicker eye liner, my bad!) but otherwise, nothing to suggest that the primer did anything to enhance the eye color at all! Quite disappointing really.

On a more positive note, I wore the color for about 5 hours and after that, I did another assessment. The lid with primer did not crease and the color stayed the same whereas, on the primer-less lid, the color faded a little and creased too. So, for me the only concrete reason to use a primer would be to keep my eye colors looking fresh. It does not in any way make the color more vibrant as can be seen on the side without any primer.

Has anyone else experienced this? Should I go on using a specific primer for eye lids or just stick to covering the area with a little concealer and a light dusting of powder before I put on eyecolour?