Thursday, October 31, 2013

For Minimalist Days: RMS "Un" Cover Up

[Product was purchased by me.]
RMS "Un" Cover Up in 11.
RMS Beauty's "Un" Cover Up has gotten a lot of good reviews (Lily's here, Taylor's here, Xiao's here), and since I've been going easy on the full face foundation lately, I thought I'd give it a try. I ordered 11, based on the reviews above. It's definitely my match. It only comes in 4 shades (11, 22, 33, 44), which is a bummer if you fall past the very limited range.
Swatched with a finger. Seems much paler than me, but it's a good fit for my face. Please ignore the McFlufferson hair. They get EVERYWHERE.
It's a yellow-based product, which is good for me and my yellow-based face. However, I think it does meld into skin well (and both Taylor and Xiao have cooler complexions than I do). I have tested this both as an undereye concealer and as a spot concealer. I am happy to report that it doesn't cake up or look powdery; it looks like skin. Very nice.
ZOMBIE EYEEEEEEESSSSS. RMS "Un" Cover Up is illuminating, as well. It's not SUPER COVERAGE, but it's good coverage, and when you zoom out and look at the full face, it helps a lot. Nothing is going to improve the consistency of skin under my eyes, of course, and I don't expect this to accomplish miracles.

My undereye area is the real problem area - I have dark, dark circles and lots of puffy bags. I usually apply Bobbi Brown's corrector and set with powder; the orange based corrector keeps me from looking ashy. I was concerned that the "Un" Cover Up's yellow base would bring back zombie days, but thankfully, it's luminous enough that it actually brightens up the area again. It does need to be set with a powder, but I find it lasts all day; I dab gently with a ring finger to keep it from blending out too much, and then lightly pat a powder over it (NARS or Annabelle's BB Compact).
Wearing only RMS Uncover Up 11 as base, and other random colored cosmetics, including MAC Whisper of Gilt as an all over highlighter. Sorry for an old hair pic. I think this is the last of them.
As a spot concealer, it's not quite as long-lasting; I still set with a powder, but by the end of the day, redness begins to show through again. It also doesn't completely cover up freckles or sunspots, but hey, if it did, it'd be too heavy for my tastes anyway. I like the luminous finish to this Uncover Up, and the short list of recognizable ingredients also makes me happy.
Still works with the new hair color - doesn't make me too ashy. Here I'm wearing it under eyes and as spot concealer, and used Annabelle's BB Compact Makeup to set it.

I purchased mine from Beauty Sage with a $10 off coupon code and excellent customer service. It's also available on Spirit Beauty Lounge and RMS Beauty's own site for $36.

Ingredients:
cocos nucifera (coconut) oil*, 

ricinus communis (castor) seed oil*, 
cera alba (beeswax)*, 
theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter*, 
simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil*, 
tocopherol (non-gmo), 
rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) extract*,

may contain + / - : 
titanium dioxide ci 77891, 
iron oxides ci 77492, 
ci 77491, 
ci 77499.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Fall Beauty Wishlist, Pt. II

Fall Beauty (Sephora VIB, etc.)

Fall Beauty (Sephora VIB, etc.) by eyeheartit

The Sephora VIB sale is coming up. I'm not sure if I will actually buy something, but I had fun putting together a list. Plus, November is the birthday month!

(Not all of these items are available at Sephora - RMS Beauty, the LM set, Conair, NARS Peloponnese).

I have been going through lip balms like crazy, but I think I'm finally abandoning the waxy versions for good. Gloss keeps my lips hydrated, so I'm hoping that the Fresh Sugar Shine lip treatment will work for me. I also need something to depuff eyes; concealer and corrector help combat the dark circles, so I want to target bagginess, hence my interest in the Ole Henriksen Eye Lift set. 

My new red hair needs to be tamed, so I may finally cave and get one of these straightener doohickeys. This is the Conair Infiniti Pro Tourmaline Ceramic Flatiron. 1-inch plates, as everyone has recommended. I want to be able to use it for relaxed, large waves, as well as straightening. Is this possible?

Moving on. I also need to warm up my face (again, red hair), so I've got my eye on Becca's mineral bronzer in Duende, or maybe RMS Beauty's Buriti Bronzer (see Taylor's fabulous review).

Laura Mercier's mini Caviar Eye stick set has also caught my eye - putting that on the wishlist, for sure. And finally, more nudes for lips. NARS Peloponnese, from the Fall 2013 release, is a sparkly nude matte that I've had my eye on. The other option is Bite Beauty Muscat, which could be my kind of nude.

What's on your lists lately?

Monday, October 21, 2013

Something About Cheekbones

[Featured product was a gift from a friend.]

I'm probably not a very good blush fiend. I think most of mine are limited edition, which makes me hesitant about sharing my picks or seasonal go-tos.

I guess that didn't stop me from actually picking an LE blush, but you know, it at least gave me some pause. And I did think of some permanent blushes that were similar, so hey - I'm looking out for you.
Tarte Stellar*, the RT blush brush, and my Charlie Brown hoodie.

I have to preface this by saying that I don't love Tarte's blushes. They're ok, but they're not the end-all of blushes for me. I actually sold off the one that I owned. But I got Stellar (part of last year's Christmas set) from a friend, and it's not half bad. It's shimmery, but the shimmers are subtle, and I use a highlighter anyway, so it doesn't much matter. On me, it's a browny rosey something, not orange and actually perfect for subtle contouring. You know, something about cheekbones.
The silver specks look really chunky here, and they kind of are, but they don't show up as chunks of tinsel on cheeks. Thank goodness. Why does everyone seem to think that we only want sparkle-central blush?
I'm not very good at contouring and I rarely do it - and even when I do, it's only a half-hearted attempt at creating structure, nothing fancy with proper brushes and lines and all that jazz. I just use the same fluffy RT blush brush, dab the very tip in Stellar, and then poke at my face, under the cheekbones - not on the apples. Then I highlight the cheekbone with MAC Whisper of Gilt, and call it a day. However, Stellar also makes a nice neutral blush for red lips or something equally punchy, so in the fall, when I wear red/vampy lips or darker eye looks a lot, it's perfect and wonderfully versatile.
Wearing Stellar as a "contour" shade. In quotes because my contouring skills are nonexistent. Also, sorry, I still have some dark-haired photos kicking around. Stellar still works with my new hair color, but it's a little different.
Similar to Stellar? Well, I can't think of anything that's exactly the same shade, but I can think of ones that are intended to achieve the same neutral effect: MAC Harmony, Tarte Exposed, Illamasqua Zygomatic, Becca Fig...there are a lot of them. What's your favorite neutral blush?

And check out the other Blush Fiends' picks!
Bloomin Beauty
Bronzer Bunny

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Luxurious Skincare: A Tatcha Treat

[Products were provided by PR, gratis.]
Tatcha One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil, $48.

There seems to be a new focus on luxury skincare, especially in the blogging community. And these brands are not only luxurious, but also have an emphasis on naturally sourced ingredients and a "greener" outlook on beauty and product formulation. It's nice to see, although the price point of these lines put them squarely in "luxury" rather than practical or necessary. Still, if you're at that point in life where your budget accommodates such items, sometimes they are nice to have. I think it's up to the individual to decide what is "worth it," in terms of money and time and effort and product choice. It's not for me to judge.

Tatcha is right up there with beautiful packaging, and good-for-your-skin ingredients. All of their products are formulated without mineral oil, synthetic colors, synthetic fragrances, sulfate detergents, parabens, phthalates, urea, PEGs, PPGs, DEA or TEA, which is nice to hear - it's nice to know that you can use a line pretty indiscriminately even if you're on the lookout for certain ingredients.

Their One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil ($48 for 5.1 fl oz, for all skin types) feels cushiony and doesn't dry out my skin. If I'm wearing liquid liner, it can leave a bit of residue left along my eyes (also, I don't like to rub my eyes a whole lot), but otherwise it does a great job at removing makeup. You pump some (I usually do half a pump when I'm not wearing much base makeup) into dry hands, massage gently over the face for a few minutes, and then wash it all off. I sometimes follow up with the Polished Classic Rice Enzyme Powder (usually just once or twice a week), but otherwise I don't feel the need to wash my face again afterward.

ingredients: cetyl ethylhexanoate, oryza sativa (rice) bran oil, polyglyceryl-10 dioleate, polyglyceryl-2 sesquicaprylate, water, glyceryl behenate/eicosadioate, ethylhexylglycerin, phenoxyethanol, camellia japonica seed oil, algae extract, alcohol, camellia sinensis (green tea) leaf extract, glycerin, fragrance (natural).
Tatcha's packaging is so beautiful. The Rice Enzyme Powder is $65.

Their Rice Enzyme Powder ($65) comes in three formulations, addressing different skin types. I have the Classic, but probably the Gentle version would be better suited to my skin. I do feel like my skin is a little too tight after using this, which is why I only use it a few times a week. For those with normal/combination skin, it would be fine, I think. You pour some onto wet hands, lather it up, and gently massage your face with it. It's scrubby, but the particles are very fine, and it feels like a paste in the end rather than individual beads or anything like that. I like it. It is such a pampering treat, like a true spa facial. It contains rice and papaya enzymes, conditioning pearl and Tatcha's signature Hadasei-3 complex.

ingredients: talc, microcrystalline cellulose, potassium myristate, polyethylene, oryza sativa (rice) bran, papain, dextrin, algae extract, camellia sinensis (green tea) leaf extract, glycerin, alcohol, phenoxyethanol, hydrolyzed conchiolin (pearl) protein

Overall, I do find Tatcha's products both effective and luxurious, which is what was intended. Do you need these? No, probably not. But if you're the kind of person who can comfortably treat yourself to Tom Ford and the price point doesn't deter you, I'd go for it. I'm not quite at that stage in life yet (need. job. desperately.), but I'll live vicariously through you. And indulge in the rest of what I have here, which I think will actually last me quite a while.

How do you feel about the influx of "green," luxury beauty products? Do you have a favorite brand to recommend?

Friday, October 18, 2013

Learning How to "Heat It Up"

[Products marked with a * were a gift; everything else was purchased by me.]

I have been a redhead for all of two days now, but I am learning that clothing colors and makeup colors now matter. A lot. If I wear makeup that is a little too cool or too pale, I look really washed out, and well, that's not hot.

Hot. Get it? Warm

Ok. Maybe just lukewarm. But you know what I mean. I didn't really worry about these things too much before, although certain colors were avoided because they zombified me. Also, the eyebrow situation. THE EYEBROW SITUATION.

Who knew this was so complicated? Today I tried a few things, though, and I like how they turned out, so I thought I'd share. I needed to warm up my face, so I added bronzer. Even though it's autumn and the weather is cool. BRONZER. I needs it. I also used a coppery shadow, and skipped my MUFE brow gel, opting for a warmer, reddish brown shadow to just gently shade in patches. It's a softer brow look but I think it works, especially since my bangs hide most of them.
Also, I think I can no longer wear lavender, and must buy many much more blue and green tops...
I had a little problem with lips (nothing seemed to work!) so I settled for orangey gloss. God, I love orangey gloss. I need ten more tubes of it (I'm about halfway through my tube of Rising Sun!).

Face
Bobbi Brown Corrector in Peach, Annabelle BB Compact, RMS Beauty Uncover Up in 11
Dior Aurora bronzer, MAC Honey Jasmine
MAC Whisper of Gilt

Eyes
Tarte Gold pencil*
Tarina Tarantino Wonderful palette
theBalm Shady Lady Vol. 3 Racy Kacy
Smashbox Limitless Liquid liner
Clinique Lash Power mascara

Lips
MAC Rising Sun cremesheen

I'm so in love with this shade of red. The change is exhilarating! Thank you for all of your kind comments and helpful tips regarding color treated hair. How do you warm up your looks? Do you have tips on how to deal with brows that are in stark contrast to hair color?

Thursday, October 17, 2013

I've Always Wanted to be a Redhead

[I paid for this all by my lonesome. And it was a lot of monies. Haha.]

You may have seen the news if you follow me on Instagram.

I have wanted to be a redhead for a very long time. Very long. But I always thought that it wouldn't work with my coloring. But I still pinned photos of redheads. And envied Amelia Pond.
I have a huge girl crush on Karen Gillian. HUGE. And now I'm going to be Amelia Pond for Halloween. *fistpump*
[source]
So I pinned photos. And pinned photos. And lusted. And whined to Liz and S. And finally decided, the hell with it. Yeah, it was going to cost A LOT (not just the initial dye job, but the upkeep!), and yeah, maybe it wouldn't turn out so hot, but damnit, I was going to try. I'm not a DIY kinda gal, so I went to the salon to have it done. I go to Caruh Salon, and have been for the past five years. I like having a single stylist who knows all the things about my hair and who I can trust. I showed Lindsey my photos:
[source]
[source]

and pretty much said, "I trust you. Go for it."Because Lindsey is awesome. And this is what I ended up with:
I need to warm up my brows a bit. Any suggestions?
It's an Aveda dye, which I'm told is "97%" natural. It does contain ammonia, but I didn't have to bleach my very dark brown hair to achieve this color, so I was still happy. I'm working on relearning how to match makeup to my face (and how not to do a double-take each time I catch a glimpse of my reflection or my hair falls in my face), but I'm really, really loving the change.
Wearing RMS Uncover Up in 11,  MAC Whisper of Gilt to highlight, L'Oreal Everlasting Nude on lips, and MAC Honey Jasmine on cheeks. Eyes are a variety of things, mostly theBalm's Nude'Tude palette, Smashbox Limitless Liquid liner, and Clinique Lash Power.
I've never dyed my hair before, really (besides some punk red streaks in college), and I can see my parents' disapproving faces already. I think for them, their disapproval stems from a rejection to things "unnatural" (Asian girls with red hair), as well as a misinterpretation of the reason for going forward with a change like this. It's not because I don't want to look Asian, or that I'm rejecting my cultural background, or anything like that.

I just wanted red hair.

Sometimes it's just that simple.

Any tips you have for color treated hair would be much appreciated. As well as any tips on how to coordinate my makeup with my new warmer, redder hair.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

A New Red for Autumn: Laura Mercier Rouge Nouveau in Mink

[Product was purchased by me.]
I love the sleek packaging of these Rouge Nouveau lipsticks.
I have a bit of a thing for red lipstick. And mattes. Which is why I've fallen head over heels for Laura Mercier's Rouge Nouveau in Mink. It's described as "brick red," which is how it swatched on my hand, but once worn, it turns into a gorgeous strawberry sort of shade. With, yes, brick red undertones...but i's a very modern shade.
Wearing Laura Mercier Rouge Nouveau in Mink, and the makeup from this post.
It's pretty weightless because it's wax free, which means it applies a little differently than the traditional lipstick. Less crayon, more...I don't know. Feels almost like a stain. It does get a bit drying, but you know what? You can give someone a peck on the cheek (or, erm, lips), with no transfer.

So take that. I swatched it here with some other mattes. I also wore it here. The Rouge Nouveau line comes in two other finishes (Sheer and Crème, which I'm tempted to sample), and the letter of the name indicates what formula it is (i.e., Mink is Matte). I've got my eye on Muse, which is a gorgeous aubergine, but I could use a sheer formula too, maybe.

Have I convinced you to go matte, yet? 

Ingredients for Mink (taken from Laura Mercier's website):  PENTAERYTHRITYL TETRAISOSTEARATE, OCTYLDODECANOL, MICA, SILICA, POLYETHYLENE, C12-15 ALKYL BENZOATE, ISODECYL NEOPENTANOATE, TRIACONTANYL PVP, SILICA DIMETHYL SILYLATE, CAPRYLYL GLYCOL, DISTEARDIMONIUM HECTORITE, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, FLAVOR (AROMA), PENTA

Friday, October 11, 2013

Some Kind of FOTD: Minimalist

[Products featured in this post were purchased by me, except *, which were gifts.]

It's not really a smokey eye (unless it's okay that's there more eye, less smoke), and it features a nude lip and a pretty minimal face. Not that my face is minimal. But the makeup is.
Are my bangs crooked, or is my face crooked? Life's mysteries...
You see why I had problems with a name?
I can never do a really dramatic smoky eye. I just settle for a darker shade in the crease and lots of blending.

Anyhow. I've been skipping foundation lately, because it feels heavy and well, I've grown fond of my freckles. I make sure to conceal my undereye circles, and apply highlighter (I've been using MAC Whisper of Gilt daily for months) to fake that glow. (Also. RMS Uncover Up is on its way to me - for some reason there are shipping delays. I wonder if this is related to the government shutdown?)

Face
Benefit Fake Up 01 Light*
Bobbi Brown Corrector Peach
Tarte Stellar*
MAC Whisper of Gilt

Eyes
MUFE Aqua Brow 25
Laura Mercier Sandglow
Shiseido BE231 Trio
Tarina Tarantino Wonderful palette
Smashbox Limitless Liquid Liner
Clinique Lash Power mascara (! This isn't paraben-free. BUT I really wanted to try a tubing mascara, just to see how it works. I'm kind of in love and this is unfortunate.)

Lips
Dior Angélique Beige
Revlon Gold Dust

The light in our new apartment is much better, but Seattle fall and winter days are terribly short...I apologize for the blurriness. Freaks out my camera. What's your favorite makeup for minimalist days?

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Skincare Quickie: Neutrogena Blackhead Eliminating Daily Scrub

[Purchased by me.]

This is a simple staple in the household. I like exfoliators that both S. and I can use, and he doesn't particularly like things that are too frilly or complicated. This is neither. It has salicylic acid and large, round, gentle exfoliating beads, for both a physical and chemical scrub.
Our new apartment has granite countertops. Oh, so much love.
I use it maybe 2-3 times a week in the shower (in lieu of a final cleanser, like Ole Henriksen's On the Go), and I think S. does the same (I know he uses it, I just don't know how often. I could ask, I suppose, but then he looks at me funny). I don't have particularly acne-prone skin, but I do believe in preventative measures, all the same, as well as diminishing the appearance/occurrence of blackheads. I think this Neutrogena scrub really does work, and it's very gentle. It probably could be used daily, especially if you have oily skin (we both have dry skin). I've already repurchased this a few times. Nothing ground-breaking or earth-shaking, but stability is good, too.

It's nice to find dependable products on the cheap. What's your favorite exfoliating product?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

We're All Matte, Here - Matte Lipstick Picks

[Products featured in this post were all purchased by me, except *, which was received as a gift.]

I really love a matte lipstick, even though my lips are typically dry. Mattes can sometimes be a statement, it's true, but I also think they can be really flattering - a sort of soft-focus effect that's not all unnaturally glossy or sparkly. I thought I'd share my favorites.
Becca Beach Tint in Strawberry, Tarte Matte Lip Tint in Exposed, Laura Mercier Rouge Nouveau in Mink, NARS Mascate.
First of all, though, I have to tell you: I hate when people tell me that I should use a balm under a matte lipstick to make it less drying. Seriously. It completely eliminates the matte effect, so why the hell wouldn't I just go buy another glossy or juicy looking formula in the same shade, instead? The point of a matte lipstick is that it is matte, and if I have to tweak it or layer five or lip products in order to make it comfortable to wear, I'm not interested.

Phew. Good to get that off my chest.

So. Yes, I do sometimes exfoliate my lips prior to wearing matte formulas, but only if I think it's necessary. You can pat on balm way before hand and blot it off, too. That eliminates most of the shine. But most matte formulas are at least slightly drying - that's what you get. It's like wearing high (3.5+ inch) heels. Your feet are gonna hurt like a mother after dancing in them all night, but damn, you looked good wearing them. I haven't sampled all the wide range of mattes available, but I like NARS's Pure Mattes (I own two: Carthage and Mascate), Tarte's matte lip tints (I own Exposed*), and Laura Mercier's new Rouge Nouveau line (the M names are mattes). I haven't tried MAC's, or any drugstore formula, so I can't compare those.
Tarte Exposed, Laura Mercier Mink, NARS Mascate, Becca Strawberry.

I know these look similar in my swatches, but Tarte Exposed is a gray pink (sounds attractive, doesn't it? It's pretty, I promise). Laura Mercier Mink is supposed to be brown red, but on my lips, it's the most gorgeous warm red...it's a must have. NARS Mascate is also a must-have. MUST HAVE. And Becca's Strawberry Beach Tint dries matte, but a bit patchy. It's brighter than Mink. It's the most drying, so I don't wear it often, but I really love the shade. I'm a bit torn. And I know I said not to talk about this, but if I'm not going for a matte look and I'm layering lip products, the Beach Tint is the best, because it's a stain, so you don't get any weird transfer when you apply gloss over it, or any mooshing around of product ("moosh" being the technical term, of course).

The bottom line here? Buy NARS Mascate.

No, really.

Annnnd, because I love them, what is your favorite matte formula or shade?

A Few Apps That Help Keep My Life Together

No beauty here for a second. Quick update: S. and I moved to a different part of the city. Dennison is not adjusting, and we're also trying to transition to non-student life. We've been Internet-less for a while, and that sucked (so dependent! It's like caffeine), but I've been using the time to get acquainted with some new apps.

My life is run on Apple products, and I'm not going to get into it with you about that. But I would like to say that I do have a preference for organizational apps that sync across all of my various gadgets. Which means I can do work on my Macbook Air, and have it show up on my phone, ready to go when I'm out and about and need to access my shopping lists or my meal plans. And S. can access them as well, on his Android phone (the Dark SIDE).

The first two are ones I use to help run the household. Home Budget ($19.99 for the OS app, $4.99 for the iOS version) is a family budgeting tool; it doesn't sync with bank accounts, etc., which I actually prefer, because I like keeping a running account of my own that I can update in real time. I run the main account on my Macbook, and S. and I can both access it on our phones, as well. Yes, you have to buy each app separately - and it gets pricey - but it's worth it for us.

We used to run an Excel sheet on Google Docs, but I don't have the skills to create repeating expenses monthly, associate them to different categories, etc., etc. This is really handy. I did do some research before purchasing, and this is the one that suited me personally, but there are a few more on the market.

The second one for the household is Paprika. Again, it's $19.99 for the OS app and $4.99 for the iOS. You can store recipes (!), automatically scale them up or down (!!), sort them by category and all that good stuff (!!!) and use them in meal planning.
Showing organizational aspects of Paprika.

You can also use recipes to create grocery lists, and menus for up to a month, and sync across all platforms so that you have your grocery list with you when you are shopping.
Paprika's Browser in action. 

Again, S. and I both have access, so I plan the meals, and he pulls them up to cook with. Paprika also has a browser which supports a number of websites, so you can use the "Save Recipe" button at the top to clip a recipe. If the website is not supported, you can highlight relevant bits of the recipe on the page, and assign them to parts of the recipe card (e.g., "ingredients," "directions") and build up a recipe card for it that way. Super, super handy, and I'm so pleased.
Evernote. Just getting started. There's more going on now.

The last app is one that I wasn't immediately in love with. I didn't quite get it. But now that I've just jumped in and started using it, I have to admit that Evernote is pretty rad. You create "notebooks," and "notes," and basically, you can just go wild. You can set alerts and reminders very easily (I like this better than the "Reminders" app that comes with iOS) and it's just a great way to keep my ideas organized - and to be able to jot down thoughts as I'm on the run, as well. I keep my blog posts ideas in a notebook, for example. Again, it syncs between phone and laptop. The golden thing, though, is the Evernote clipper add-on to your browser. You can clip articles and pages and pictures and store them in their respective notebooks. Yes, it's like bookmarking, but it's all so organized and pretty. I'm kind of in love. Best of all? Evernote is FREE.

Sorry, that was longer than I intended, but I thought it might be helpful for others who wanted to get organized. I'll be back with beauty soon (matte lipsticks and cold weather friends on deck). What apps are must-haves in your daily lives?