Friday, June 17, 2011

I love sleep...

I'll be honest here. I love to sleep. I could sleep 12 hours a day, EVERY day. I come by it honestly, my mom is a champion napper. That being said, as much as I love makeup I cannot possibly get up in time to do a full face like I used to when working at M.A.C. Enter: the Stila Trendsetting in Tokyo palette

I have a lot of (ahem) free time at work so occasionally when I'm bored and feel like sprucing up I'll put on my trusty Studio Fix powder and reach for this palette. The big pink color you see at the bottom of the photo doubles as a cheek color and a lip color (a little dry for my lips but meh...). I put a little color in my face and grab a 217 brush and swipe a little of the champagne color over my lid, add mascara and voila! I have a face on! Do you have quick makeup staples that you reach for consistently? In the interest of honesty, sometimes I reach for a lipstick as blush. Shoot me.
Happy Friday!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Clarisonic Review/My new best friend

Over the years my skin has been the barometer for all that ails me. As a child I was plagued with eczema on my arms and legs, as a teenager I had horrendous acne coupled with dry skin patches. Oh yes, I was a dermatologist’s dream. Read: MONEY. Once those conditions sort of cleared up (did I outgrow them?) I was happy to just have so-so skin. It was relatively acne free, save for the occasional (ahem MONTHLY) pimple and I found products to combat the dryness. The one thing I really couldn’t overcome however, were these small bumps under the skin along my jaw-line. Couldn’t call them blackheads, definitely not white heads but (let’s get graphic here people) when squeezed, a white substance came out. It was a lot like when you over-squeeze the toothpaste tube. I wasn’t able to get rid of them permanently. They weren’t so bothersome that I felt the need to seek out my lifelong dermatologist (I still see him regularly for eczema) but I would have been more than happy to see them gone. My T-zone is quite oily as well which is new for me, having been the dry skin poster child for most of my life.

          I was recently given a Clarisonic by a dear friend of mine who works for the company. She claimed it would revolutionize my skincare regimen. I heard: ‘blah blah blah’ whatever. But, I turned 32 last March and thought I should probably start doing a little more for my skin to combat some of the damage I’ve inflicted over the years, so I kindly thanked her and began using my Clarisonic. For reference, I use M.A.C. Cleanse Off Oil to remove makeup, Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum at night, and M.A.C.Studio Mositure Cream before bed, and M.A.C. Strobe Cream for day time. The Clarisonic instructions told me I didn’t need to change my regimen as far as products (although they do offer their own line of skin care) so I stuck to what I’ve always used.

The following took place over the course of one week of use:

Day 1: The feeling of the bristles is quite invigorating, very stimulating. My skin felt like I’d done a medium level exfoliation. It was more than I could get with an exfoliation product but far less than I’d have felt with a micro-dermabrasion.

Day 2: It could be all in my head but my skin feels like it absorbs my moisturizer far better than when I was only using my hands to wash my face. My skin feels much smoother to the touch.

Day 3: I noticed a slightly dry, red patch under my eye on the highest point of my cheekbone. I ran out of Cleanse Off Oil and had to use my boyfriend’s Green Gel Cleanser, so this might account for the patch but other than that my skin is really starting to feel really good.

Day 4:  I should have taken pictures from day one (if only to convince myself) but I would SWEAR the pores on my cheeks are nearly non-existent. Had I ever really thought of this as a problem before? No, because as a makeup artist I perfected the art of covering them up!

Day 5: Those pesky little bumps along my jaw-line are COMPLETELY gone except one or two. I didn’t realize how skeptical I actually was until I realized the Clarisonic had totally gotten rid of those bumps that I’d given up on evicting from my face.

Day 6: I’m targeting wrinkles now. The teeny tiny, barely there little lines near my eyes are now my mission to eliminate. The operating instructions show me which setting to put my Clarisonic on to maximize results. These lines are shaking in their boots.

Day 7: I’m going to kick up my serum game and purchase an eye cream serum to really go after those lines and this time I’ll be taking pictures to prove to myself and everyone else how well this thing works because I find it hard to believe myself!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Benefit Eye Bright Review

I was given a Macy's card for Mother's Day (shout out to my boyfriend's mom Ophelia!) and found a really cute top on clearance which left me with enough to try out the Benefit Eye Bright pencil :) I missed out on the M.A.C. concealer pencils and wanted a pencil that wasn't so stark white for my inner rim. I told the gal at Benefit that I'd like to try a more flesh colored pencil for my waterline and she thought this was perfect. The color itself is a soft pinky tone and it really is pretty. However, the staying power for the waterline is nil. It's literally gone in minutes. It's not marketed for the waterline, it's supposed to be used under the brow and near the inner tear duct. It's a very creamy formula which is probably why it disappears in the waterline. I'm sort of meh about it, I probably won't purchase it again being as it's 20 dollars. I'll use this one up and then order the concealer pencils from M.A.C. Have you tried Benefit Eye Bright and how did it work for you?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Take two lipsticks and call me in the morning...Trust the Experts!

Just a quick post about your best friends in the beauty industry: the counter employees at stores like Macy's or Nordstrom. I have found their knowledge so extensive and comforting over the years that they are my top pick hands down, especially if you're not exactly a connoisseur of makeup or skincare products. Get to know the ladies and gentlemen there, they will talk with you in-depth about your desires and needs when it comes to beauty products. Are they on commission? Yes, but these folks aren't hired just to sell, sell, sell they are interested in developing relationship with you so that you continue to use them as your personal beauty expert. After all, this is what they love to do: talk makeup, skincare and the like. They’re knowledgeable about any upcoming collections and launches and can put you on their personal contact list to keep you informed.  Your best bet is to go in on a weekday morning, bare faced with a solid color shirt (black or white is usually best) and just head for the counter that strikes your fancy. Looking to shake things up with some bold color? Head for M.A.C. Do you like the natural, neutral makeup that just enhances your features? Make a beeline for Bobbi Brown. If you're dying to get into a great skincare routine Kiehl's, Estee Lauder or Laura Mercier will bring about your best skin yet. See? That wasn’t so hard. Take some time for yourself today and get a personal, complimentary assessment and get on the road to your beauty and skincare goals. You'll feel better in the morning!



**Coming Soon**
My review on the long revered: Clarisonic !!