January 28, 2012

Swatchfest: L'Oreal Infallible Le Rouge Target Red

Here is a quick comparison of the L'Oreal Infallible Le Rouge lipstick in Ravishing Red (left) and Target Red (right).  Frankly, I don't see the difference so I thought I would throw up the swatches to save ya'll $10.00.

If I was FORCED to share a difference between the two colors, I would say that the Target Red (right) is slightly deeper in tone.  Truly the difference is almost perceivable to the naked eye.  I would say go for one or the other, since the color is gorgeous, but don't bother with both.

Lisa Eldridge and Marilyn Monroe Lips

Lisa Eldridge, one of my ultimate makeup artist idols, posted a stunning video with tips and techniques Marilyn Monroe's makeup artist is thought to have used for her film and print career.  If you've never watched Lisa, I highly suggest her videos.  With years of experience in the makeup industry, Lisa manages to not only explain what she is doing during the application, but the technique behind it and why that approach is being used.  She is a great teacher for ALL makeup enthusiasts, novice to professional.  You can view the video here.

In the video, Lisa describes some tips for creating the iconic red "Monroe" lip.  I gave it a try this evening and this is how it turned out:

Not only does this look involved so much product that my bottom lip droops instinctively, but I think it also makes me a shoe-in for the next Rocky Horror Picture intro.

To achieve this look, I used to following products:

MAC Cherry Lipliner
L'Oreal Infallible Le Rouge Lipstick in Target Red (a dupe would be Ravishing Red)
MAC Crystal Avalanche Eyeshadow
Clear Gloss

I LOVE how the white shadow makes the bottom lip POP!
Doing my best to channel Marilyn, this face is ridiculous

January 27, 2012

Urban Decay Peversion and Demolition: Comparision and Swatches

Urban Decay has recently released two matte, richly pigmented, 24/7 eyeliner pencils to their permanent collection. Please see the comparison swatches to the existing brown and black in their line-up below:

Left: Demolition (new) vs. Bourbon

Left: Perversion (new) vs Zero

These new additions to the Urban Decay 24/7 lineup and much darker and more pigmented than their predecessors. 

Perversion reminds me of a MAC Smolder pencil, minus the irritating smudging.  It has been my go to black since it's release and I have yet to disappoint.

In the case of Demolition, Urban Decay is finally answering my plea for a dark brown with NO GLITTER (hooray!).  While I have had Bourbon in my collection for a while, I find that it's bronze look can sometimes make my eyes seem red or irritated and the glitter isn't always what I'm looking for.  I, for one, am very glad to add Demolition to the pack!

My new wish for Urban Decay is to make their special release Baked pencil permanent.  It's genius on the lower lash!

What do you think - will you be checking these guys out?

No7 Poppy King Collection

Poppy King is a lipstick legend.

Having started her own cosmetic company at the age of 18, Poppy's brand Lipstick Queen has created quite a cult for years.  In the United States, her products are hard to come by, mostly being stocked in Bloomingdale's Space N.K and Barneys stores.  With such high end marketing, you can imagine my delight when I heard she was working with UK brand No7 to design an affordable line of lipsticks featured in Target stores all over the United States.

The line was released just before Christmas but can still be found in many target stores now (my two local stores had products available).  I was able to pick up three of the seven lipstick colors available, and one gloss.  Please see swatches below:

Top: Glamour, Intrigue, Power, Allure
From Left: Glamour (Gloss), Intrigue, Power, Allure

From the squeal worth packaging to the texture and application of the lipsticks, Ms. Poppy King does not disappoint.  The colors are creaming and opaque with the feel of a high end product for $9.99 price tag.

I do want to point out one strange thing I noticed with the size, let's compare shall we?

No7 lipstick, 3.5 g / 0.12 oz             Mac lipstick, 3 g / 0.1 oz

No7 lipstick, 3.5 g / 0.12 oz             Mac lipstick, 3 g / 0.1 oz

Strangely enough, by weight alone, the No7 lipsticks are a smidgen heavier than your average MAC lippy.  Compare the packaging, and you have a clear case of "looks can be deceiving".  The No7 lipsticks seem to cut out all the "fluff" with their packaging, condensing the lipstick into a teeny tiny, and likely to get lost in my ginormous purses, package.  As much as I love minis, this is one product I wish was in a slightly larger packaging.

Silver lining?  This is the PERFECT size to slip into a clutch for your night on the town.. 

No7 Gloss, .2 oz                       MAC Dazzleglass, 0.06 oz

I am not normally one to compare size vs. price for products, but reviewing the amount of physical product  in the No7 Poppy Collection as compared to a similar product by MAC, it's impossible to ignore that Poppy is providing one heck of a deal!

Final Verdict: KEEPER!

- Opaque coverage
- Wearable Colors
- 4-5hours Average Wear time
- Great Value

If you could find them, I would highly suggest you pick them up before they're gone!

January 26, 2012

Golden Cranberry Tutorial: Dream in Full Color Palette

To complete today's face of the day I used the Stila Dream in Full Color Palette.  To view the full tutorial on how to achieve this look, please watch the video below.  More photos of this look after the jump!


January 24, 2012

Fresh Spring Bridal Before and After


Just a quick before and after of a bridal trial.  This bride was  having a Spring wedding and requested to look put together without being over done.  The main ingredients for this look were:

Eve Pearl Foundation - Light
Laura Mercier setting powder - translucent

MAC Vanilla Pigment
MAC Cork
MAC Wedge
Urban Decay 24/7 liner in Bourbon
Lorac Front of the Line Pro in Brown
LOreal Voluminous Mascara in Brown
Ardel Demi Wispies in Brown

Benefit Coralistia

MAC See Sheer

January 22, 2012

Swatch City: MAC Pinks and Reds

Reds from Left to Right: MAC Red, Russian Red, Ruby Woo
Pinks from Left to Right (top row): Cream Cup, Lovelorn, Speed Dial
Pinks from Left to Right (bottom row): Pink Nouveau, Please Me, Snob

January 19, 2012

Product Comparison: Eve Pearl Black Pearl vs. LORAC Front of the Line Pro

If you read my last posting, you know that my Eve Pearl Black Pearl liner met it's untimely death with the trash bin yesterday.  Before I threw her out, however, I did want to show you my preferred dupe for this product: LORAC Front of the Line Pro (Black)

LORAC describes this product as:

This high-performing no-smudge, no-budge, water-resistant liquid eye liner boasts a unique automatic delivery system that provides a clean, precise application. The flexible tip provides ultimate control, accuracy and smooth strokes, so you’ll never miss your lines. From very fine to dramatically bold, this versatile pro will take you to the front of the line every time!

This liner has quickly become a holy grail item for me.  Smudgeproof, tear proof, and easy application ta'boot.  I've even purchased this produce in black AND brown - it must be true love.
LORAC Front of the Line Pro is perfect for those cat eye flicks, and creating long lasting drama that only black liner can produce.  Fool-proof application makes it something that I often suggest to my makeup clients as well:
   Hold it like a pen and take your time.  You'll master the perfect black liner in no time!

You'll notice that both Eve Pearl Black Pearl Liner (top) and LORAC Front of the Line Pro (bottom) have similar appearance and thin tip applicator.  In the interest of full disclosure, I will admit that Eve Pearl's Black Pearl has a darker,  more pigmented line when directly compared to LORAC's version.  That said, the main difference for me is that when the LORAC liner is down and dry, it does not budge.  I've never experienced  light pigmentation upon application and don't find it necessary to go over the line multiple times to get a true black.  

In retrospect, maybe that is the downfall of the Eve Pearl version.  Maybe it's TOO pigmented since I always seem to end up with a mess in my eye upon application, see my review here

LORAC is a clear winner for me in comparing these two products and gets more than regular use in both my personal and professional career.  If you are having trouble getting your cat flicks just right, this is a great product to try.  Holding it like a pen is familiar to our hands and makes application a breeze.  Knowing it's smudgeproof and waterproof also gives you the confidence that once you've mastered the look - it's not going anywhere!

January 18, 2012

Product Fail: Eve Pearl Liquid Liner

Due to increasing brand competition and saturation in the market, today's cosmetic and beauty market offers a LOT of options.  Sephora offers 100+ brand names, and a trip to any department store will provide you the same number of options.  Not including drugstore and indie brand options, there is NO reason for a consumer to accept a product which does not fully satisfy their expectations. 

Enter today's product fail: Eve Pearl Black Pearl Liquid Liner

Eve Pearl describes this product as follows:

This long lasting liner has a uniquely tapered brush for a precise smudgeproof application. The highly pigmented formula offers all day wear with rich, luminous results.

I picked this product up during my first visit to the IMATS 2011 show in Los Angeles, California.  Lucky enough to meet Eve Pearl personally, I heard about her experience as a celebrity makeup artist and also received first hand information on some of her most popular products.  The Black Pearl liquid liner was created to fill a hole in the market, making black liner portable, rich and easy to apply.  

Convinced, I took this product home immediately (along with a handful of Eve Pearl's other popular products).  Unfortunately, my displeasure with this product started with my first use and has continued until today's ultimate product disposal; please see below.   

Every time I apply this product to my upper lash line it ends up as a watery mess IN MY EYE.

*Cue the EWWWs* 

To be clear, in the picture above, I have applied the product just as I would any liquid or pencil liner: above the lash line.  This is no photoshop trickery, I did not apply to either my upper or lower waterline, and this is a repeated result not just a "one-off" or fluke. 

I do feel it's important to disclose that I have watery eyes, 12 months a year; That said, I have NEVER had any other product produce this result: gel, pencil or liquid. 

Maybe the product is defective, maybe Black Pearl and I were just not meant to be.  I know that there are many other beauty bloggers in the industry who love and praise the Black Pearl liner; I, sadly, will not be one of them.

Can't win 'em all.  For me TOSS IT!

January 16, 2012

How Eyebrows Can Change Our Entire Look: Covergirl Jessica Stam

I was glancing through the latest Marie Claire magazine and noticed the three different looks Jessica Stam has done for
Covergirl's Lip Perfection Runway series.

Most striking to me was how the different ways in which the makeup artist dressed her eyebrows really added to a harder, softer or more high fashion appearance. Check it out:

Unrelated Excitement: My Newly Painted Chevron Wall

I will be the first to admit that the majority of my blog is centered around makeup, beauty and the like.  That said, you may or may not know that I am also an avid crafter and all-around design lover.  I don't blog about the craft projects often, but sometimes I get so overwhelmingly excited about a project that I just can't keep it all in; Such is the case today, as I skip around my house with pure joy.   

Apartment living has always had drawbacks: old beige carpet, white washed walls, and little to no creative freedom.  After more than five years in my current space, everything just reminded me of....oatmeal.  Not in color or texture mind you (that would be weird) but in theory. 

The apartment, like oatmeal, was fine; A dependable source of nutrition, with it's neutral middle of the line approach, it was something I could always depend on filling the "just fine" category, but nothing truly exciting to write home about. 

Enter the need for a new couch. 

My previous couch, bright red in all it's glory, had succum to five years of plopping, sleeping, snuggling and late night movie popcorn eating for my husband and three kittahs.  The old broad was showing the wear, and begging for retirement. 

Selecting a new piece of furniture felt overwhelming and exciting at the same time.  How one piece of furniture could give me the creative freedom to design something new and different with my oatmeal-like apartment, I still don't understand.  I mean, it's just a couch...right?

Regardless of the catalyst, the colors, the textures, the patterns (Oh My!) allowed me to completely redesign the room.  Now that the paint has dried, I may actually BURST if I don't share, and, giving it some thought, bursting does not really sound all that fun.

So without further ado, behold my Chevron Zig Zag wall!

Paint Colors: Benjamin Moore Paint
Decorator White (Eggshell), Stonington Grey (Eggshell), Salzburg Blue (Gloss) 

Complete with my new black couch!

January 11, 2012

Product Review: Covergirl 24hour Mascara

Product on the chopping block: Covergirl LashBlast 24HOURMascara, Very Black

Those of you who read my recent "Product Rant" regarding mascara are probably one step ahead of where I was when I bought this item, "Jamie Lynn, you don't use waterproof mascara so WHY ON EARTH would you consider a 24HOUR formula?!" My friends, you'd be right.
Covergirl 24HOUR Mascara Right Eye - Eyes Open

Covergirl 24HOUR Mascara Right Eye - Eyes Closed


Covergirl 24HOUR Mascara Both - Eyes Open

Covergirl 24HOUR Mascara Both - Eye Closed

 The Verdict- Keeper or Toss Me?


My distaste with this product is not unfounded, I will argue. While the formula is reminiscent of Covergirl LashBlast Volume (the original in the Orange Tube),the removal of said formula brought upon literal tears.

I do not use waterproof mascara because I strongly feel that rubbing the delicate eye region is something that should be avoided at all costs.  With the variety of makeup remover solutions, gels, creams and wipes out there, it just isn't necessary to rub back and forth with a cotton pad to remove a products. 

Apparently this was a memo never received by the creators of Lashblast 24HOUR formula.

Top Left: BioDerma Makeup Remover, MU Forever Senseyes Remover, MAC MU Wipes

It took me three, THREE, products to get this product off my lashes in it's entirety.  This makes it an immediate Toss Me! product in my book.  Check out how much products was left after using both the makeup wipes and soaking with Bioderma Remover for 30 seconds:

Now I'm a girl who can appreciate a product that sticks with you, but this one just sticks too much.  It is fair to consider my bias against a product like this, since I don't use waterproof mascaras, but in retrospect I wish I would have know that I was testing the kryptonite of mascaras I did it.

Final Verdict: TOSS ME! 

There is a distinct different between long wear and FOREVER wear. 
I like my makeup to come off at the end of the night, without having to rub my skin raw in the process.

Sorry, Covergirl, this one isn't a winner for me.

My Collection of MAC Mineral Skin Finish Products

Top Row, From Left: MSF Porcelain Pink, MSF Blonde, MSF Petticoat Pink
Second Row, From Left: MSF Redhead, MSF By Candlelight
Third Row, From Left: MSF Stereo Rose, MSF Lightscape

MAC Naturally Redhead MSF Comparison and Swatches

Left to Right: MSF Redhead, MSF By Candlelight

Top to Bottom: MSF By Candlelight, MSF Redhead

MAC Naturally Blonde MSF Comparisons and Swatches

Left to Right: MSF Porcelain Pink, MSF Blonde, MSF Petticoat Pink

Left to Right: MSF Porcelain Pink, MSF Blonde, MSF Petticoat Pink

MAC Naturally MSF Swatches + Subtle Breeze

From Left: Mineral Skin Finish Blonde, Mineral Skin Finish Redhead, Mineral Blush Subtle Breeze

MSF in Redhead
MSF in Blonde

Left to Right: Subtle Breeze, MSF Redhead, MSF Blonde

Tune in tomorrow for dupe comparisons of the Blonde and Redhead MSFs...