2010 Favorites

My favorite products of 2010, in no particular order...

Ulta Artist Palette Blockbuster 108 Pc. Collection

This is only going to be available for a short time now but I picked it in November. It was $15 well spent. The kohl and liquid liners alone make this palette an incredible deal (I LOVE Ulta's liners!), but taking the eyeshadows into account as well... ♥ ♥ ♥

Colorful! Gold, Purple, Pink, and Blue Eyes ♥

I used the 88 Cool Matte Palette for this look...you can see how gorgeous the colors are. And I ONLY used this palette. I typically reach for my Wedge eyeshadow from MAC for my transition color between the brights and the highlight, but with this palette, I was able to mix two colors to create a similar color. Love it! 

88 Cool Matte Eyeshadow Palette Swatches

I LOVE this palette. Different from the original 88 matte palette, this one (purchased from BH Cosmetics) has a different grouping of colors and some of the most beautiful mattes ever. It's just a nice change from the 88 palette that's been around for years. Like all the other matte palettes though,this one isn't entirely matte which has always been a bit disappointing for me. None of the colors are overly shimmery but some definitely have a shimmer and/or sparkle to them. What I do love is that the colors in this one aren't like...neon. They're bright but not overly so, and there's a nice amount of highlight shades and neutrals/transition colors in it too. It's beautiful and a pretty good deal at $24.95. You might be able to find it on eBay too but I'm not sure.

And now...swatches! (applied over concealer)

Frequently Asked Questions

Are you a makeup artist?
I do freelancing from time to time and love it, but by career, I am not a makeup artist.

Where did you learn how to do makeup?
I never went to school for makeup at all. I learned from joining makeup communities online and by watching tutorials on Youtube. So basically, it was just one of those that were learned by practice and some trial-and-error.

Can you recommend any good makeup schools?
Unfortunately, no. I have no clue about makeup schools at all.

Can you tell me how to take clear pictures with my camera?
Sorry, but no. I basically only know how to take the pictures I post with my own camera. By just playing around with the settings, I've figured out exactly how to make it work for my lighting. You can always do a search for your camera's manual online though. That may help.

What is your skincare routine?
Nothing special really. In the morning I cleanse with Oil of Olay Total Effects Refreshing Citrus Scrub. It’s an awesome and affordable daily exfoliant. Plus, it smells lovely. Then I moisturize with Oil of Olay Active Hydrating Beauty Fluid. At night, after removing my makeup I cleanse with Oil of Olay Total Effects Nourishing Creaming Cleanser and my Clarisonic Mia (can’t be without it!). Then I moisturize with Avon ANEW Rejuvenate Cream and use a random eye cream. I switch between several and honestly I don’t think any work better than the others. I just like knowing that I’m using something. And…that’s it.

What kind of foundation do you use? Do you have a foundation tutorial?
I tend to stick to the same foundation routine and products; they've been my must-haves for years. I start off with a liquid foundation, MAC Studio Fix Fluid in NW25, applied with a Sigma F80 brush. No, Studio Fix doesn't break me out. It's the best foundation I've ever used; to each their own. Next, I apply an undereye powder concealer/brightener, Loreal Bare Natural Concealer in Light, with a regular flat foundation brush. I then buff my powder, MAC Studio Fix Powder in N5, over my entire face with a duo fibre brush. Last, I use a bronzer, NYC Skin Smoothing Bronzer, on my cheeks and nose, again with a duo fibre brush. I then apply a blush to the apples of my cheeks and/or a cheek highlight. The blush and highlight are the two things that I switch on and off with depending on the look I'm going for.

I don't have a foundation tutorial though.

What do you use on your eyebrows? Do you have a tutorial?
I always use Senna Cosmetics Brow Shaper Duo in Brunette to shape and fill my brows, MAC Studio Finish Concealer in NW25 to clean up the edges, and Senna Brow Fix X in Taupe as a setting gel. I LOVE Senna brow products over every brand I've ever tried.

No tutorial, yet. Coming soon!

What kind of lashes do you wear?
I wear Demi Wispies, usually the Salon Perfect brand. I always wear the same lashes unless I go for a costume makeup look. This makes them a lot more natural since they're the only ones people are used to seeing me with.

Why do you use Too Faced Shadow Insurance AND MAC Painterly Paintpot (or any other base)?
My lids are incredibly oily. If I just use one or the other, my eyeshadows will crease and face in no time. So, I need the two together to make for a perfect base for myself. You can do whatever works best for you. This is just what works for me.

Why do you cover your freckles? Don't you like them?
I love my freckles. I just don’t like the look of my eyes being completely done and having little-to-no coverage on my face. It’s just really incomplete looking in my opinion (on myself). Plus, my foundation does not completely cover my freckles. They’re still visible. They’re just not super noticeable.

Why don't you line your waterline?
I used to be able to line my waterline but now for whatever reason, putting color in that area literally hurts my eyes. It’s practically unbearable so I stay away from it and just got used to how my makeup looks without that added drama. I love it.

Why don't you do your foundation first?
I’ve always, always, done my eyes first, foundation second. It works for me and it’s just what I’m used to doing so I’ll continue.

Merry Christmas! ♥

Just wanted to wish all of you a Merry Christmas! If you don't celebrate Christmas, then I hope you have a wonderful day nonetheless. I truly do appreciate all of the support from each of you and just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you all for being the best blog readers, Twitter followers, and Youtube subscribers ever. ♥ you!

Have a lovely holiday!

Matte White and Blue Eyes

Another look using the 36 Smokey Palette from Coastal Scents...so so love this palette! The mattes in it are gorgeous. 

Balmshell Lipgloss Review and Swatches

Top to bottom: Ah...The Classic, Curse of the Purse, and Shoe Fetish

About the product:
BALMSHELL’s high-end conditioning formula contains lanolin oil, jojoba oil and no artificial preservatives. Perfume-free, BALMSHELL is slightly flavored with a hint of natural fruity vanilla. This unique formula creates a smooth high gloss finish to enhance and give the appearance of full supple lips.

Each shade is packaged in a unique tube that contains a floating illustration. Each illustration has a cute story line that can relate to every woman. When you are finished with the gloss you can unscrew the illustration and attach it to a complimentary keychain component allowing you to keep the artwork.

Conditioning Formula

* Jojoba oil (brings moisture to the lips)
* Lanolin oil (locks in moisture)
* No Artificial preservatives
* Paraben free
* Perfume-free, flavoured with a hint of fruity vanilla
* Non-sticky and sheer, varies in sparkle and shimmer

$20.00 each

Blue and Purple Eyes using the 3rd Edition 120 Palette

Yup...the 3rd Edition. I'll have swatches and a review coming soon but right now I'll tell you that out of all the 120 palettes, and maybe out of all the palettes that I have, this one is my favorite. LOVE IT!

No picture of the palette and the colors I used from it this time...this is just a teaser post.

Swatches: Coastal Scents 36 Smokey Palette

For more info check out Coastal Scents!
36 Smokey Palette

This new palette from Coastal Scents is lots of fun! 36 colors, broken down into 6 different, coordinating color groupings, that can be mixed and matched for tons of different looks. The shadows in this palette are pigmented with a good combination of mattes and shimmers. There are a few colors in this palette that are just gorgeous too, which I'll show you in the swatches below, but the blues and purples in this palette are beautiful. Lots of MAC dupes too! :)

Tutorial Preview: Purple, Sugar Plum Fairy Eyes

This look, using the Wet N Wild Sugar Plum Fairy palette, was what I did for Thanksgiving. A bit on the smokey side and perfect for the holidays (or any time of year in my opinion). I paired it with an off-the-shoulder sweater, black leggings, and boots :)

e.l.f. Mineral Face Primer

About this product(from e.l.f.):

"Transform your face into a flawless and smooth canvas with the Mineral Infused Face Primer. Developed to combat against excess oil, flaky dryness, enlarged pores and fine lines. This clear multipurpose skin primer will prepare your skin so makeup goes on evenly for a long lasting satin finish."

My Review:
I've heard some mixed reviews on this product, but for me, it's amazing. My makeup seriously lasts for hours without ever having to touch up. It doesn't dry my skin or make it any more oily. I do have combination skin and it balances it out, allowing my makeup to wear evenly on my dry, normal, and oily areas. And $6? Um...I LOVE it.

I will say though, that the packaging is a major failure. I've had 3 bottles of this so far and on all three, the pump has stopped working and the plastic tube on the inside that draws the product up to the pump has also broken. I end up having to twist the pump off and scoop the primer out with the end of a brush. Terrible. It's a major downfall in my opinion...the primer works SO well though.

My goodness though...e.l.f. PLEASE change the packaging to a squeeze tube!

***CLOSED*** Meltiva Giveaway (up to $50 value) (Continental US residents only)

Last week it was a L'Occitane giveaway--this week it's Meltiva.

Meltiva is the number one beauty brand in France selling certified organic skin care products. Now is your chance to win a Meltiva product of your choice (up to $50 from the Meltiva website).

To enter:

Post a comment below answering the following question:
--Which Meltiva product will you choose if chosen? (one entry)
--Also include your e-mail address for contact info. 

Additional rules and details:
--No "ANONYMOUS" entries.
--One (1) entry per person.
--Continental US residents only.
--Winner will be chosen at random and contacted via e-mail.
--All rules MUST be followed in order for your entry to be valid. 

Contest ends Saturday, December 11, 2010 at 10:59pm PST. 

What I'm Using Now (Winter 2010)

I did this back in March so I figured it's time for an update!

Shampoo: Bed Head Brunette Goddess Shampoo

Conditioner: Bed Head Brunette Goddess Conditioner

Styling products: Tresemme Heat Protectant

Shower Gel: It varies from day to day but right now I'm between 2 different Ulta brand one...coconut and bubble gun.

Body Moisturizer: Dove Cream Oil Intensive Body Lotion

Deodorant: AVON Cool Confidence Roll-On

Fake Tan: None~

Cleanser: Neutrogena Deep Clean Cleanser (for my Clarisonic) and Oil Of Olay Total Effects Refreshing Citrus Scrub

My *almost* Everyday Work Look

Five days a week, this is basically what I look like :) It's quick and easy, perfect for my 5am wake-up time. I tend to use different products depending on the day...sometimes shimmery, like here, and sometimes more on the matte side. Sometimes adding a touch of color or softer eyeliner. This though, is pretty much it!

For this look, this time, I used the Wet N Wild Night Elf palette...the 2 top left colors. I'm also wearing Wet N Wild liquid eyeliner, blush, and lipstick.




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