Day 2 working with MAC Mineralize Eyeshadow Cinderfella, trying to prove these shadows are versatile and easy to use. I actually named this look because I'm a dork. This is "Halloween Cinders". (That cracks me up, naming my looks! How pretentious!)
See Look 1 here. Now, for Halloween Cinders... (lol)
CINDERFELLA LOOK 2
I love orange. Love it! Guess I was in the Halloween mood when I thought this one up. I used no shadow primer today (what?! no, really!). MAC's coral shadow, Pollinator, was pressed on to the lid and upward, to just above the crease. I patted Cinderfella into the outer portion of the crease and lid with a brush I dampened with water, and pulled the color down under the lower lashline, too. I took a fluffy brush and blended MAC's Coppering into the crease, using a windshield-wiper motion to combine the orange and black. For more definition, I pressed some more Cinderfella onto the outer 1/3 of the lid and crease with a dry brush.To really build the colors, MAC's Firespot was applied to the inner 1/3 of the lid and the inner 3/4 of the lower lashline. Coppering was tapped into the center of the lid, and I gently tapped the lid with a compact, flat brush to blend the colors so no harsh edges remained (but all colors were still distinct). I pressed a small amount of MAC's Motif into the tearduct area. Under-brow highlight is skin-toned concealer; mascara is Diorshow.
Face: MAC Full Coverage Foundation in NC15 applied
with Beauty Blender sponge that I wet with MAC's Fix +.
Cheeks: MAC Springsheen powder blush applied with MAC 188 brush
Lips: MAC Mellow Flame Lipstick topped with MAC Oh Baby Lipglass
Brows: they're nekkid!
I dropped the ball on my Tuesday Tip yesterday. Shame on me! We shall do it today, ok?
Let's talk about skincare today. Not in-depth - we'll do a lesson later about that. But today, let's just talk about a few little things, mkay?
When to apply/use certain products:
This get a little hairy, and I'd bet it's one of the most commonly asked questions about skincare (besides "what one product will solve my millions of issues and make me look like Angelina Jolie?").
Bonus Tip: Apply eye cream across the face like a bandit's mask - get the "laugh lines", the undereye, the lids, the nose-crinkles and all.
Another Bonus Tip: Toss your eye cream or serum in the fridge and apply it chilled to tamp down puffiness!
Read more Tuesday Tips here.
Np2 Nail Perfection is the Future of Beautiful Nails
Innovative Nail Company launches with introduction of 32 colors
The Ninja had not heard of "Np2" until a mail was delivered to the old Inbox. (The Inbox has been busy lately!) This Np2 is apparently a top coat (super-fast-style) and colored base coat, like so:
Of course, the polish is said to be of "superior quality", having "remarkable radiant color and amazing durability". Clearly the gimmick is the stacked-up bottle. The bottles, with their two-part packaging, are meant to snap apart so they can be mixed-and-matched.
The top coat has an "outstanding express top coat formulated with a nail hardener and nourishing treatment", and the colors are meant to reflect current, seasonal trends.
About the nail color itself:
This technology is based on a unique combination of resin and high molecular weight polymers designed to help improve the flexibility, durability, wear and gloss properties of nail enamel.
The first coat of lacquer instantly bonds to the nails & the second coat fuses with the first to create a flexible web of color that resists brittleness and chipping.
• Superior extended wear
• Patented formula
• Initial high gloss and gloss retention
• Chip resistant
• Tough & durable yet flexible finish
• Water and detergent resistant
• UV protection for color fidelity
• Formulated without Toluene, Formaldehyde & DBP (BIG 3 FREE)
All properties and specifications of the formula are maintained from batch to batch by strict quality controls guidelines from incoming raw materials through final batch production.
About the top coat:
This product was developed to possess the adhesion and nail protection characteristics of a base coat and the glossy, protective finish of a top coat. It has very good wear, easy application and a fast drying finish.
As a base coat, this product provides excellent adhesion to the nail. This allows for improved inter-coat adhesion between the nail and the nail enamel which leads to improved nail enamel wear.
As a top coat, this product provides a glossy finish and tough surface to help maintain a long lasting and chip resistant manicure. Fast drying action for quick and glossy results.
As a clear, this product will provide a smooth and glossy finish to the natural nail, making the nail appear healthy & simply well manicured.
• Formulated without Toluene, Formaldehyde, and DBP
• Helps prolong the wear of the nail enamel
• Easy application
Check out their cool "virtual manicure" here!
Check out their cool "virtual manicure" here!
Have you tried Np2? The Ninja wants to know!
American Library Association's Banned Book Week. Their tagline, "Celebrating the Freedom to Read" says it all, but for those who want more, here it is:
Banned Books Week (BBW) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment. Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States.
Intellectual freedom—the freedom to access information and express ideas, even if the information and ideas might be considered unorthodox or unpopular—provides the foundation for Banned Books Week. BBW stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of unorthodox or unpopular viewpoints for all who wish to read and access them.
Check out the list below. "According to the Office for Intellectual Freedom, at least 42 of the Radcliffe Publishing Course Top 100 Novels of the 20th Century have been the target of ban attempts. The titles in bold represent banned or challenged books. For more information on why these books were challenged, visit challenged classics and the Banned Books Week Web site."
Sasha Halima, on her blog I mentioned, marked up the list with books she's read or wants to read. I thought I'd borrow her idea here. Feel free to play along in the comments or on your own blog or Facebook page!
Here's the list of "classics". Bolded books have been banned or challenged.
Books I've read are marked with an *asterisk*
1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald*
2. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger*
3. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck*
4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee*
5. The Color Purple by Alice Walker*
6. Ulysses by James Joyce*
7. Beloved by Toni Morrison
8. The Lord of the Flies by William Golding*
9. 1984 by George Orwell*
10. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner*
11. Lolita by Vladmir Nabokov
12. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck*
13. Charlotte's Web by E. B. White*
14. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce*
15. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller*
16. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
17. Animal Farm by George Orwell*
18. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway*
19. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner*
20. A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway*
21. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
22. Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne*
23. Their Eyes are Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
24. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
25. Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
26. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell*
27. Native Son by Richard Wright
28. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey*
29. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut*
30. For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway*
31. On the Road by Jack Kerouac*
32. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway*
33. The Call of the Wild by Jack London*
34. To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
35. Portrait of a Lady by Henry James
36. Go Tell it on the Mountain by James Baldwin
37. The World According to Garp by John Irving
38. All the King's Men by Robert Penn Warren
39. A Room with a View by E. M. Forster
40. The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien*
41. Schindler's List by Thomas Keneally
42. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
43. The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
44. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce
45. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
46. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
47. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum*
48. Lady Chatterley's Lover by D. H. Lawrence*
49. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess*
50. The Awakening by Kate Chopin
51. My Antonia by Willa Cather
52. Howards End by E. M. Forster
53. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
54. Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger
55. The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie
56. Jazz by Toni Morrison
57. Sophie's Choice by William Styron
58. Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner
59. A Passage to India by E. M. Forster
60. Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
61. A Good Man Is Hard to Find by Flannery O'Connor
62. Tender Is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald*
63. Orlando by Virginia Woolf
64. Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence
65. Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe
66. Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
67. A Separate Peace by John Knowles
68. Light in August by William Faulkner
69. The Wings of the Dove by Henry James
70. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
71. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier*
72. A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams*
73. Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs
74. Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
75. Women in Love by D. H. Lawrence
76. Look Homeward, Angel by Thomas Wolfe
77. In Our Time by Ernest Hemingway
78. The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein
79. The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett*
80. The Naked and the Dead by Norman Mailer
81. Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys
82. White Noise by Don DeLillo
83. O Pioneers! by Willa Cather
84. Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller
85. The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells
86. Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad
87. The Bostonians by Henry James
88. An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser
89. Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather
90. The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
91. This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald
92. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
93. The French Lieutenant's Woman by John Fowles
94. Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis*
95. Kim by Rudyard Kipling
96. The Beautiful and the Damned by F. Scott Fitzgerald
97. Rabbit, Run by John Updike
98. Where Angels Fear to Tread by E. M. Forster
99. Main Street by Sinclair Lewis
100. Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie
I give great thanks to my High School Literature program!
And after considering all of the books I haven't read on this list: I've gotta get to the library!
I thought this chart was interesting:
Banned Books Week is sponsored by the American Booksellers Association; American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression; the American Library Association; American Society of Journalists and Authors; Association of American Publishers; and the National Association of College Stores. It is endorsed by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress.
For more information on getting involved with Banned Books Week: Celebrating the Freedom to Read, please see Calendar of Events and Ideas and Resources. You can also contact the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom at 1-800-545-2433, ext. 4220, or [email protected]
On Friday Victoria’s Secret announced it will open its legendary runway to the public as it holds open casting events to find the next Runway Angel to join Supermodels Alessandra Ambrosio, Miranda Kerr, Doutzen Kroes, Marisa Miller and many others as they walk in THE VICTORIA’S SECRET FASHION SHOW, to be broadcast Tuesday, Dec. 1 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
Casting events will be held in New York City, Miami, Los Angeles and Chicago beginning Saturday, Oct. 3. Contestants can also enter online at VSAllAccess.com and CBS.com from Thursday, October 1 through Saturday, October 24. A Victoria’s Secret panel of experts will narrow the field to 10 finalists and will then hand over the selection to the public, who will have the opportunity to cast their vote to choose the winner in an innovative online video and voting process.
Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show Model Search Open Casting Events include:
· New York City, October 3 at Yankee Stadium, 8 – 10 AM
· Miami, October 10 at Gansevoort South Beach, 8 – 10 AM
· Los Angeles, October 17 at W Los Angeles – Westwood, 8 – 10 AM
· Chicago, October 24 at W Chicago – Lakeshore, 8 – 10 AM
Disclaimer: The picture does not have anything to do with Jessica nails.
The Ninja just likes a little levity from time to time.
Maybe if we use Jessica's products we, too, can win the Guinness World Record for Longest Nails?
Disclaimer: The picture does not have anything to do with Jessica nails.
JESSICA, manicurist to the stars, has a few tricks up her sleeve thanks to the last three decades of taking care of Hollywood’s elite fingers and toes. Her understanding of varying nail types and conditions has revolutionized the industry and altered the way in which manicures are offered today. Below are some of her “Best Of” tips to help with common nail ailments:
· Polish chipping after one day? You can get it to last longer with a few simple steps:
o Gently file the nail in one direction and make sure that there are no rough edges
o Cover the entire nail with polish, including under and over the nail, all sides and edges
o Apply another coat of topcoat the day after your manicure to help keep nails in tip-top shape
· Running low on time or don’t want to splurge on a manicure this week? Here is how to fake it:
o Start with clean, dry nails. Massage a cuticle oil like Phenomen Oil with natural Jojoba into cuticles and nails to make them look pink and healthy. If necessary, file nails so they are smooth and evenly shaped.
o Next, wash hands to make sure excess oil is removed. Apply 2 coats of the appropriate basecoat treatment for your nail type, 2 coats of light, sheer color and finish with fast-drying top coat like Brilliance that gives nails a high gloss shine. The light color will hide any polishing imperfections and your cuticles will look and feel pampered
· Are your nails ridge-prone?
o Ridges are a common problem. “Buffing” the ridges with a strong grit buffer will damage the nail plate. Since most ridges cannot be corrected as they are a result of a Systemic illness or by an injury to the nail bed, JESSANA Flexible Fix and JESSICA Flawless products beautifully conceal the ridges, leaving a smooth finish on the nail. Now you can apply your polish without any signs of imperfections.
o Secret tip: The safest way to buff the nail is with an old fashioned Shami cloth.
· Frustrated with your polish turning yellow?
o This occurs from overexposure to the sun or a chemical reaction with crèmes and lotions or detergents and cleansers. The most important thing to do is choose a topcoat with UV inhibitors to help prevent yellow. Also, be sure to wear gloves when cleaning, this will help protect nails and hands.
Interesting JESSICA facts:
· First to develop a natural nail system that promotes the health & growth of the nail – Natural Nail Cultivation System®
· First to invent The Natural Nail Transplant®
· Opened the first NAILS Only salon in the world
· First to introduce America to the French Manicure
· First to use heated mittens and booties during manicures and pedicures to soften and soothe skin, a treatment that is commonly offered in nail salons today
W Magazine Announces The First Annual “W: The Art Project”
SEARCHING FOR AMERICA’S MOST TALENTED YOUNG PHOTOGRAPHER TO BE FEATURED IN W
The description: Green slate
When the cold, black days of winter roll back into town, snuggling up by a warm fire seems like the only fitting social activity. Luckily, Jessica, manicurist to the stars, has a few reasons to pull on your furry-best and hit the town. The new winter 2009 collection, Baby it's Cold Outside, brings out your inner snow-bunny and has you heading for the eggnog instead of the hot chocolate.
The Baby It's Cold Outside collection presents four new rich colors that add drama and personality to your cold-weather style. With shades of deep greens, purple and glittery black, the new collection helps any woman look good as Jack Frost is biting at her nose.
The rest of the collection:
#643 - Divine Pine - Hunter Green
#644 - Midnight Mist - Grape
# 645 - Black Ice - Shimmering Black
All shades are:
Eco-friendly (Toluene-, Formaldehyde- and Phalate-free)
Infused with UVA/UVB protection
Formulated with Vitamin A for maximum conditioning
I really am digging the MAC Trend F/W '09 collection, as I discussed here. One of my favorite items from the collection is Runway Fave, and I've decided to wax poetic about it for awhile.
Don't panic and think "Grey!? She's nuts! I'm outta here!"
It's a neutral with maybe the slightest touch of pink swirled in,
and a touch of a nude taupe to ground it. Look at the pics!
Does it look like I'm wearing a "grey lipgloss"!?
I have worn a grey lipgloss. Several of them. More on that another time! ;)
Anyway, isn't she pretty!? Let's look some more:
Now, before you skip down and look at more pics, let's chat a bit. I promise to keep it short and get back to the pretty!
If you are a person with cool undertones, then I bet you have had your share of trouble finding the perfect nude lippie. I know I have! My solution thus far has been to use something with a tinge of mauve, or to mix my own (like C-Thru + a mauve, N1 + Viva Glam VI). But finding a NUDE - a color that's the shade of my skin or lighter - has not really happened.
I turn most "nudes" orange. C-Thru is the warm-skinned girl's best friend (and some boys, too!), but it looks oddly orange-brown on me. I've grabbed all sorts of "nudes" with the same result. Were I feeling belligerent, I'd ask how it's called "nude" if it doesn't work on everyone, but I'm way too nice to go there. ;)
Runway Fave is my dream come true! It virtually disappears on my NW10-15 skin, making it seem as if my lips have just faded way. Like a nude lippie is supposed to! :falls over:
The perfect nude lip to offset smokey eyes or strong purple eyes or intense blue eyes (hullo, Fall/Winter '09 trends!).
MAC hit one out of the park for us!
I dove in and tried Cinderfella, one of the Mineralize Eyeshadows from MAC's new Style Black collection (we discussed it here). I really liked the shimmery silver running through the inky black, and wanted to see what I could do with it. I'm going to try to do a look a day for the rest of the week using this color, since some people say they're not easy to work with. I wanted to show how versatile they are!
CINDERFELLA LOOK 1
This eye look was created with MAC's Blackground Paint Pot as a base, topped with Cinderfella (applied wet). I buffed in a silver-purple shade called Crystal (also by MAC) above the crease to transition from the dark color to skin color. Crystal was also added to the inner corner of the eye with a clean pencil brush, and then the same shade was blended under the lower lashline with the "dirty" brush I used to apply the Cinderfella, so they sort of melded together. I thought that lacked the definition I wanted, so I went back and added some Carbon (MAC) into the crease and outer 1/3 of the lid. Top and bottom waterlines were filled in with Carbon applied with a wet brush (that lasts GREAT!).
Here's what I came up with:
The rest of the look:
Face: MAC Full Coverage Foundation in NC15 applied
with Beauty Blender sponge that I wet with MAC's Fix +.
Cheeks: MAC Tenderling powder blush applied with MAC 188 brush
Lips: MAC Runway Fave Lipglass
Brows: A concoction I brewed myself
MAC Trend F/W '09 is another collection in stores now. I briefly mentioned it here. I got a chance to see it, so let's break it down again I'll tell ya what I thought. If you've seen it/skipped it/bought from it, let us know!
Faultlessly F/W - blackened blue violet
Hipster - burgundy frost
Red Full Stop - bright neon coral
Our Pick - cement taupey grey
Thoughts: Faultlessly F/W is the most gorgeous, sexy, deep purple. Stunning. Lovely. I'm not sure how to wear this, but I'm going to Back-to-MAC for one. I considered, and considered and then walked away without it, and I'm sorry I did. Hipster is a red-purple frosty version of Faultlessly F/W, in my opinion, and right on trend! (shocking, huh, since this is the "trend" collection?) This is a really gorgeous color - I snapped it up immediately. Meanwhile, Our Pick was not my pick. This shade is more of a putty color than I thought I could handle - a bit less cool than the description "taupey grey" implied to me. As you will see in a moment, I love its sister Lipglass, so when I go back to the counter I'm thinking I'll try it on my lips just in case it works better than I though when swatched. Red Full Stop has a puzzling name, since "neon coral" and "red" are not synonyms! This is what I used to call "crazy cat lady coral" in the 90's, but honestly I am warming up a bit more to this type of color. This shade is more neon than I personally can handle, but I'd love to see this on women with darker complexions! It's a Lustre, so a little lip should show through - if you need opacity, use a coral pencil underneath. This is a VERY hot shade. I'm pretty impressed overall with these lipsticks!
Runway Fave -grey toned neutral light pearl / F
New Berry - deep plum / C
So This Season - deep blue violet / C
Thoughts: I shouldn't be surprised that I fell for these Lipglasses. I mean: a berry, a purple and a pale greyed-out shade? C'mon! They've got my name written all over them! New Berry is a cream - I wish it had a bit of shimmer to it, but then it would probably look like other shades I already have. It's a stunner, though, and can be built up to a pretty good intensity even by itself. Layered, she's a mankiller! So This Season is also a cream formula, so again: opaque. It's quite purple, so not for the shy. Again, this is one I'd love to see on some NW45s and NW50s - that's where it's really going to sing! But I, a lousy NW15, will be rocking it, too. And then there's Runway Fave... my fave. I have a few grey-based lipglasses and lipglosses, and love them all. But this rocketed right up to the top of my favorite grey lipgloss list! It's not really a grey, let's be honest. It's a greyed-out neutral pink, but the base pink is quite subtle and as close-to-neutral as pink can be. This is the best nude I have tried in a long time, and cool-skinned gals (who find nudes hard to locate!) should try this one. I'm going to write a whole post on this color, so stay tuned!
Eyeshadow Quad: Tone:Grey
- A Warmer White - pale green grey /S
- Tone:Grey - mid-tone grey - S
- Waft - dark blue grey / F
- The Right Smoke - rich blue with white pearl / F
Thoughts: I passed on this palette, as I pass on most palettes. The specific reasons I passed on this one are: a) I have Waft from its previous palette appearance, b) this is more of a blue than a grey, so I was pissed at the misleading name and c) I feel like I have other palettes that look similar. That said, if you're new to MAC or wearing blue shadows, this is an excellent palette to pick up! The colors are all fairly blendable and pretty, and most skintones will be able to pull off these shades. Blue is a big, big, big (did I mention big?) trend this Fall and Winter, so this is an easy way to snap up four colors that fulfill the trend!
Fragrance (in roller ball form)
Asphalt Flower - violet and iris petals with a sheen of vanilla and patchouli
Thoughts: This is a really, really pretty fragrance, though I am not a fan of the rollerball applicator (am I in the minority here?). I really like the violet and iris, and never complain about vanilla and patchouli. If you're looking for a pretty fragrance, try this one. Unfortunately (?) I have other scents that are similar, and since I don't like the rollerball, I passed.
As many of you know, over the last few months our site has been experiencing periodic trouble – timing out, not displaying images properly, running painfully slow, etc. We have been working very hard with our server to get these problems ironed out, but it has been slow going. We have now been assured that our site is running smoothly and will it continue to do so moving forward.
We can only imagine how frustrating it has been for so many of you, and while we have done our best to help you personally over the phone and by email, we realize that in certain cases, our help was only a small consolation after wrestling with our uncooperative website.
We are so grateful for your continued support of our brand, and now that the site is up and running properly, we wanted to thank you and treat you by offering a 40% sitewide discount for 3 days, starting today (thru midnight Oct. 1). This is a great time to stock up on your Ready to Wear and Custom favorites or to try something new that you’ve been curious about!
Enter code LOVE at checkout.
MAC has several new collections on their counters right now, and I have seen them all. Let's talk about them one at a time, shall we?
Style Black is a two-part collection - one deemed "color" and the other "face". Silly, 'cause the Cream Color Bases, part of the latter sub-collection, are certainly "color products".
Here's what MAC says about the collection:
From "Back to Black" beehive and eyeliner to Steven "80s" Sprouse-in-the-House kohl and fringe to Gareth Pugh London New Goth, Black is simply beyond. Lips, nails, eyes - there's no more dramatic way to declare your desire, separate your sensibility, celebrate your magnetism. They WILL surrender to a Blackfire Glimmerglass, Rapidblack Penultimate Eyeliner, a slash of Greasepaint Stick, and the hot scratch of Baby Goth Girl Nail Lacquer. Style Black is a way of life, a shadowy and mysterious figure of fantasy, even for just one dark and dangerous night.
Something's smoldering. Mad, bad, and delirious. Danger boy. Androgynous girl. Explicitly erotic, whip-smart exotic, and in-your-face expressive. Wicked ideas, archly executed with the dark attitude of a slightly curled upper lip. The eruption will rock you, with Volcanic Ash Exfoliator, Volcanic Ash Mask, and Cream Colour Base...changes the mood to permanent midnight, around the clock. The Dark Knight power of Style Black. Where there's smoke, there's ire...Twilight will bright it out in you.
Black Knight - Creamy true black (cremesheen)
Thoughts: Silky, comfortable, and completely not appropriate for my lifestyle. :(
Midnight Media - Dense matte black
Night Violet - Deep purple grape
Thoughts: Midnight Media is more brown-black than "dense black". It would be stunning on folks with warmer complexions, but looks a bit deathly on my fair, cool skin. Night Violet is already in my kit, and it's a sexy, deep dark burgundy-purple. Gorgeous, both, and I'm a huge fan of the Mattenes, since they give that matte look without making your lips all peelie and dry.-------------------------Glimmerglass
Bling Black - Sheer black with gold pearl
Blackfire - Sheer black with pink purple pearl
Blackware - Creamy true black
Thoughts: OK - these are certainly pretty, but BOY are they sheer! Bling Black was already sold out the day after the launch (!) but I'll be completely honest with you: I'm not loving it. The "gold pearl" is more of a green-gold, and not terribly cute in my humble opinion. Blackfire is super hot only if layered over another color - would look nice over either Mattene, or Black Knight for that matter. I briefly considered buying this one, but decided it just wasn't going to be that used and I can just mix some glitter up in a semi-sheer black gloss I already own if I really need that efect. Blackware is a typical semi-sheer black gloss, which is nice layered over a red or berry to give it depth.
Mineralize Eye Shadow
Cinderfella - Black with silver pearl
Young Punk - Black with pink purple pearl
Gilt by Association - Black with gold bronze pearl
Blue Flame - Black with blue pearl
Thoughts: Now these are the standouts in the collection, in my opinion. A lot is said about the Mineralize Shadows, and not all of it is positive. I am in the "Pro" camp, though, and think those in the "Con" family may benefit from a few tips... (see tomorrow's post for help!). I picked up Cinderfella, and am 100% thrilled with it. I will go back and get Young Punk, which is also gorgeous. Not sure why I didn't grab it when I was there! I personally don't need a black-blue glitter shadow, and the Guilt by Association doesn't rock my world - again, as with the Glimmerglass Bling Black, I feel like the "gold" is more green-gold and not really complimentary to my complexion, though warmer skintones will look great in it!
Sneak peek at tomorrow's tip and look with Cinderfella:
Intense Black - Black base with purple shimmer.
Thoughts: I liked this a lot, actually - more than I thought I would. It's like a perfected Shadestick! This one, though called "Intense Black" is actually black w/ purple, which is odd. Anyway, it's very pretty - the shimmer isn't too strong unless you build the color and rough it up a bit on the skin. I can imagine this being crease-y on oily lids, so try putting your base under it. I want one of these, but wanted to see the D-Squared2 collection and look at all of the Grease Paintsticks together and see which one I "need". I'm looking forward to trying these in a look, though.-------------------------
Rapidblack - True black
Thoughts: I haven't tried it, but it's definitely an intense black, and I like the tip.-------------------------
Smolder - Intense Black
Thoughts: This is part of the permanent collection, and I think it ought to be in every person's stash/kit. It's a great black - not too, too dark - and stays put pretty well on the lashline.
Nocturnelle - True black
Seriously Hip - Black with gold particle pearl
Baby Goth Girl - Black with pink and purple pearl
Thoughts: I already own Nocturnelle, which is perm. It's a great black creme, but I find MAC polishes "chippy". I don't know if they've changed the formula - if so, it might be worth picking this up. Otherwise, substitute the black creme from any good polish line and you'll be happier. Seriously Hip - again, this looked green-gold to me, and thus too warm for my personal preferences. I also didn't feel like it was terribly unique in the world of polishes. Baby Goth Girl ---- I had high hopes for this one. Unfortunately, the pink and purple shimmer looks stellar in the bottle and while wet, but I thought the dried-down version was less amazing. I'm going to go with clean nails to the counter the next time and swatch it again - if I get better results, I'll pick it up. Keep ya posted.-------------------------
#214 Short Shader Brush - Short, rounded, double-chiselled brush with soft, natural bristles. Can be used with shadow to line and smudge around the lash line and very effective for densely shading lids.
Thoughts: I can't believe I don't have this brush. Why?
Volcanic Ash Exfoliator
For all skin types. Volcanic ash (in the form of mineral-rich clay), sugar crystals and natural enzymes combine to exfoliate and remove excess oils from the skin. The VAE is in new packaging. It's in a tube like shave and cremewash. It did go down to 3.4oz (the older style tub was 4.5oz).*
Volcanic Ash Thermal Mask
VATM contains natural volcanic ash to cleanse and treat the skin. The mineral-rich ash works with oat kernel flour to help absorb excess oil from the skin's surface. A combo of natural oils (lavendar, sunflower, safflower seed and evening primrose) help lubricate the skin, leaving it feeling soft and moisturized. It helps to even out the skin's texture and leaves the skin feeling smooth and perfected for makeup application. The unique formula glides effortlessly onto the skin, allowing ample playtime. The mask heats up on the skin when used with water and removes impurities from the surface, leaving skin looking radiant and fresh. Use 1-3 times a week. Derm-tested, non-acnegenic and for all skins. 3.4oz*
*descriptions courtesy of Specktra.net
Thoughts: I have heard great things about the Exfoliator - it was a big hit when it was first released. I personally don't get along with sulfur, which is a major ingredient in both of these products, so alas: no review from me! :(
Cream Colour Base
Black - Creamy true black
Bat Black - Burgundy black with pink pearl
Thoughts: I don't really love the CCBs, but I'm thinking about getting Bat Black, because the color is so damn hot! (I have a problem, I know!) There aren't a ton of ways to wear these except on the eyes, unless you want to toss it onto the lips or cheeks for a very OTT look! But I think they could do a good job with that "glossy eye" look a lot of folks are trying to rock this Fall.
Did you partake in Style Black? What did you get!?
INTRODUCING M·A·C STYLE BLACK
FROM TOWERING INK-JET BEEHIVE AND EYELINER TO STEVEN “80S” SPROUSE-IN-THE-HOUSE KOHL AND FRINGE, TO STREET-SMART LONDON NEW GOTH, BLACK IS SIMPLY BEYOND!The ever-overlapping worlds of Fashion and Art may choose to revel in a Technicolour dream or a day-glo fantasy from time to time, but deep down, as Amy Winehouse likes to say in her wicked, wobbly way, it’s always “Back to Black.”
We first saw it in Milan for Jil Sander, in the spectacular living sculptures Raf Simmons chiseled from supple, constructed ebony curves and seams, each with an occasional fiery ruffle and flourish. We loved it at Calvin Klein, in boxy structures that echoed artist Richard Serra's epic shapes in their steely, outright boldness, eyelashes like the black widow spiders of sculptor Louise Bourgeois' sexy, sinister giant tarantulas....She mates, and she kills! And we were bouncing like black espresso beans at the New Goth youthquake we saw stomping down the runway at Gareth Pugh in London – the black market equivalent of a boot-leg Clash LP, all slick black vinyl and cool indignation. Quite simply the most intriguing new take on what "Goth" can be in the New Century, the Modern Black-o-Sphere.Enter the NEW GOTH, a hybrid of Fashion and Art, and a fixture on the glamorous, modern gallery scene. No longer a ghoul, but a sophisticated, international creature with makeup that changes the mood to permanent midnight around the clock. M·A·C calls it STYLE BLACK.
Lips, nails, eyes, there’s no more dramatic way to declare your desire, separate your sensibility, celebrate your sexual magnetism. Something's smoldering. Mad, bad and delirious. Danger boy. Androgynous girl. Explicitly erotic, whip-smart exotic, and in-your-face expressive. Wicked ideas, archly executed with a slash of Greasepaint Stick and a slightly-curled upper lip.
How to begin? With skin perfected and purified, whitened and brightened, virgin-pure, clean and chaste. Use M·A·C Volcanic Ash Exfoliator and the Volcanic Ash Thermal Mask to smooth skin into obsidian perfection. The eruption will rock you – these are essential earth elements, modern alchemy – to prep and prime the canvas for the Dark Knight Power of Style Black.
How Goth will you go? Your choice. You can ‘Paint it BLACK’ a la L'Wren Scott, the uber-stylist turned designer who may just have created the best little black dress collection in the world. Her own personal ‘Morticia’ lash and ebony eyeliner an essential accoutrement... where there's smoke, there's ire! Twilight will bring it out in you! Or, if you choose, opt for something subtle, allude to the dark side without crossing over; flirt with a little danger, or simply satisfy a secret craving for a tiny taste of darkling drama.... there's a Style Black technique for every attitude, and you can take it where you want to.
The Style Black trend in makeup picked up steam as the fashion machine gathered momentum around the globe. M·A·C artist innovation made it happen backstage, as the Pro Team ventured into the deep end of the dark view with new M·A·C signature shades. From Charlotte Tilbury's night-charm way with Glimmerglass in Bling Black at Donna Karan; to Pep Gay's Cinderfella androgynous Eye Shadow, bewitching with a touch of Blue Flame for Vivienne Westwood; to Polly Osmond's dramatic use of the season's indispensable Greasepaint Stick on the runway in the exotic milieu of designer Yigal Azrouel. CNC Costume Nationale was the inked with pen-ultimate Style Black. Even fast and furious Diesel got into the neo-Goth night crawler, distressed just the right way, with the smoldering look of M·A·C Black Knight Lipstick paired with the dare of a Blackware Glimmerglass.
image originally from JustJared.com
I love this picture of Drew Barrymore and Ellen Page, who are apparently "besties" now. I think the makeup for the cover of Marie Claire and the pictures inside is exquisite and brings out the best of both of these gorgeous women! Kudos to Debra Ferullo for Beauty, who did Drew's makeup. Major props for maestro Jeanine Lobell (founder of Stila) for Chanel who did Ellen's look here. I'm just taken with the makeup on Ellen. It's not like she's hard to look at anyway, but this makeup is just stunning. It makes me want to wear natural colors! (sort of)
Today, I'm wondering what makes something "backup-worthy"? So many cosmetics are limited edition, and so when many of us fall in love with something that will only be around for awhile, we buy backups. In fact, some of us get jumpy even about non-LE items. Get burned once with your favorite lipstick and you're twitchy forever! I'm just wondering what YOU consider "backup-worthy"?
ELAINE: Well, Kramer was right. My friend Kim told me the sponge is off the market.
JERRY: So what are you gonna do?
ELAINE: I'll tell you what I'm gonna do - I'm gonna do a hard-target search. Of every drug store, general store, health store and grocery store in a 25-block radius.
Later...PHARMACIST: Actually, we have a case left.
ELAINE (excited): A case! A case of sponges? I mean, uh...a case. Huh. Uh...how many come in a case?
PHARMACIST: Sixty. ELAINE: Sixty?! Uh...well, I'll take three.
PHARMACIST: Three. ELAINE: Make it ten.
ELAINE: Twenty sponges should be plenty.
PHARMACIST: Did you say twenty?
ELAINE: Yeah, twenty-five sponges is just fine.
PHARMACIST: Right. So, you're set with twenty-five.
ELAINE: Yeah. Just give me the whole case and I'll be on my way.
ELAINE: ...I just couldn't decide if he was really sponge-worthy.
ELAINE: Yeah, Jerry, I have to conserve these sponges.
JERRY: But you like this guy, isn't that what the sponges are for?
ELAINE: Yes, yes - before they went off the market. I mean, now I've got to re-evaluate my whole screening process. I can't afford to waste any of 'em.
Have you ever conducted a hard-target search?
If so, for what? Let me know in the comments, 'cause I'm dead-curious!
I know I have conducted a hard-target search, and am about to embark on another. My first all-out search for something amazing was intense. It even consisted of me calling Chanel corporate and asking them to find all of the left-over versions of this product they could. They found exactly zero. I ended up buying a ton (I forget how many, actually -I think it was 7 or 8) on eBay! What was the product? Chanel's Ultra-wear Lipstick in a shade called in Amethyst, and naturally it was limited edition and of course I discovered it after it was sold-out everywhere. I first came across it at the Chanel counter at my Nordstrom, and the tester was out on accident (they'd already sold all of them). I loved the color so much the sweet associate dug through a drawer and found an unopened tester and gave it to me! After wearing it for two days, I decided I needed to find every single Amethyst I could!
... a moment of silence for the dearly departed Chanel Ultra-Wear Lipcolor, especially in Amethyst...
I mentioned I am about to embark upon another hard-target search. For what? MAC's Naked Honey Salve. OMG, am I addicted to it's super-yummy honeysuckle scent and it's ooey-gooey hydrating goodness. If you have any, I'll give you my address and you can send it to me!
Sorry: Summer is over. For many of you, that's tragic because you hate cold weather, but others of you mourn the loss of the Summer months because you know it means your tan is going to fade. We know basking under the sun (or worse: under sunlamps!) is bad for you, but a healthy glow is often the result of a happy and active lifestyle. Seeing it fade is hard, or so I hear - as pale as I am, I wouldn't know!
This is not the time to be spending hard-earned money on tanning memberships, even if it weren't so bad for you. The same can be said of going to an airbrush-tanning place, right? Who's got that kind of extra cash in this economy!? And many of us hate the sharp odor and orange-y results of self-tanners, right?
What's a bronzed goddess (or god) to do!? Let me introduce you to my little friend:
When I first was offered a trial run of an at-home tanning airbrush, I laughed out loud. I have had no luck with self-tanning products because I'm so fair and so pink that I immediately turn a horrifying shade of rust and promptly start exfoliating it off. In fact I'll quote exactly what I wrote in response to the pitch: "I'd be interested in trying it/reviewing it, but only if you can tell me it works decently on super-fair skin! Otherwise, I don't want to waste your time."
I'm not afraid of giving a bad review, but let's face it: who wants to? No one. I purposely do not accept reviews/trials of products I think won't work for me, because I don't think that's fair. I have good skin - why should I test an acne product? I can't give it an honest assessment! That's the way I feel about tanning products: I can't be fair because I don't tan, and "faux tans" just don't look right with people of my coloring.
Or so I thought...
Luminess Tan is a self-tanning airbrush system. How cool is that!? Even though it's professional-grade, don't worry: it's easy to use. It doesn't take long to hook-up and figure out, and takes only a short time longer to spray your way to bronze.
The high notes:
Special info: Please don't make the mistake of thinking that airbrushing and spray-on products are the same! With any kind of airbrushing, you get complete control over how much of the product comes out. Also, the particles are all the same size (SMALL!). Spray-on products (tans, foundations, etc) aren't regulated the same way, leading to splotchy application, drips and other nonsense. Also, with an aerosolized product, you have no precision (try aiming just for your ears with one of those cans!). This is why makeup artists love airbrushing, and also why they spray aerosols onto a palette or their hands then apply with a brush! BIG difference between the two.
As I mentioned at the top of this story, I was really skeptical that this would a) get me believably tan (not too dark for my fair skin) and b) not get me orange. I was also fairly certain I wouldn't be able to apply it evenly!
The first time I tried it, I went way too heavy for my porcelain skin and ended up too dark. Still, it wasn't orange, but it just looked ridiculous! Part of the problem was my impatience (sprayed too heavily) and part was my injured finger (see below) not working properly on the trigger, leading to wobbling and too much concentrated spray in certain areas.
The second time I tried it, my finger was pretty much healed-up. I also didn't pull as heavily on the trigger. The results? PERFECTION! I got a very believable tan: nice and fair, even, and not at all orange. I was completely sold. This is the first tan I've ever had, and I loved it. It's also the first time my legs weren't completely blindingly white!
Note: I couldn't get accurate pictures of before-and-after because my after is still considered "fair", and it just wouldn't show up on camera. Sorry! Maybe if I had a professional lighting set-up it would have showed up, but my porch didn't seem to do the trick. I'll try to tan someone else and take pictures as a follow-up.
I am certainly holding onto my Luminess airbrush, and not even dreading those first weeks of Spring where I normally hide in capris so as not to blind others with my white-white legs! I also plan on maintaining my light bronze appearance throughout the Winter - I'll be nice and healthy-looking while everyone around me is pasty. What a change! ;)
I have mentioned my love for Andy Warhol and my affinity for Bond No. 9 perfumes. Once again, the twain shall meet!
And meet they have in Bond No. 9's Fall offering, Success is a Job in New York, which will launch in October, 2009. Whether you're pining away for those hazy, crazy Summer days or looking for the comfort of crisp Autumn nights, this spicy gourmand may be just what the doctor ordered!
This isn't just one of those blogs where the editor [that's me!] just writes up something fluffy and blows smoke up your--- er, says what they think you or the PR company wants to hear. When I say I like something, I do. And I love this perfume!
Let's get to the crux of the matter:
Top Notes (what you smell right when you put it on)
Heart Notes (the middle of the fragrance's progression, bridging the end of the quick evaporation of the Top Notes and the development of the longer-lasting Base Notes)
Base Notes (the scent that blooms about a half-an-hour after application and lingers)
Tasty good! Especially since the bottom notes are so vanilla-y yummy, layered with vanilla, patchouli and that lovely resinous citrus-tinged benzoin.
Warhol's first job as an illustrator was a Glamour magazine article called, you guessed it: "Success is a Job in New York". He was fascinated with money and fame and success, so Bond No. 9 thought this would be a great time to add to the Warhol collection and laugh in the face of the recession!
The bottle has a bold dollar sign in Warholian bright neons, appropriate for the punches of colors seen in Fall '09 fashion. The scent itself is what we called "unisex" in the 80s, and it truly is (and not in that "only certain women can carry it off" or "appropriate for certain kinds of guys only" kind of way!) Despite the name, this is a rich scent in a good, deep and sexy manner, not in the moneyed sense of the word; delightful because none of the notes takes complete control.
I really think you should give this perfume a try if you're in the market for a new scent! Stop by a Bond No. 9 boutique or your favorite Saks Fifth Avenue for a sniffie and see how money you think this perfume is!
Happy Thursday, dolls. It's been a long week, what with sick babies and suffering from the sniffles meself! (<----leftover lingo from Talk Like a Pirate Day) And I'm disappointed that it seems my secret blogging mission has been delayed AGAIN (not by me). I'm frustrated, because I've so been looking forward to it, but I guess I can continue to revel in the antic------
I'm completely of the belief that nail art is rapidly gaining popularity because of the economy. The Ninja surely is not buying nearly as many clothes and accessories as she used to. (black clothes are EXPENSIVE) And many of us were already accustomed to getting our regular manis and pedis before the recession struck. So, there's a few ways to go with a pricey beauty habit: ditch it, do it yourself, or go all-in and embrace it (while giving up other luxuries). Hence, in The Ninja's opinion, the upswing in nail art.
There's been some hype lately about nail trends involving different colors on each nail. There are a few ways to do that, including painting just one nail on each hand a different color from the other 8 (the ring fingers seem to be popular for this) or alternating colors (say, pink and coral for example).
Let's discuss some specific styles a bit more: "skittles nails" and "gradiant" nails.
The Ninja has another theory to share (she has a lot of theories!). This theory about these nail trends is that they were borne in the nail polish community (namely: the MUA Nail Boards). Polish fans swatch colors on their nails for each other, and often end up with a rainbow of shades on their nails. Being nail fans, they naturally thought "hey - cool new way to rock the polish!" This eventually translated into doing these nail rainbows on purpose. As they wore these various places, people decided they liked it too and VOILA: a new trend!
So what's the difference between the two?
The ombre nail (that's what I call it!), or "gradation", consists of polish that lightens (or darkens, depending on your perspective) as it moves from one finger to the next. Of course, you could also make each nail a gradation of color. Hmm... this gets confusing! Skittles are various colors, sometimes with no relation to one another at all.
So, Skittles Nails:
and Gradatiant / Ombre mani:
And the kind where each nail has a gradation of color:
So, how to do it? The Ninja found out!
I'm going to try these over the next week or two. Care to join me? Post your responses on your blog and give us a link in the Comments, or send me your pics and permission to post (jen@beautyschoolblog[dot]net)
On another important note: did you know there are Sour Skittles? Rock on!