Practical Bridal Makeup with Lover.ly

Bridal MakeupTo me, bridal makeup must be three things: 1) natural, 2) luxurious, and 3) transfer-proof. Everyone always nails the first two, but no one talks about the last one! A wedding day is a long day, so a bride needs her makeup to last 12+ hours, and on top of that, she needs it not to smudge on to her white dress, her groom’s white shirt, or any of the other thousand white things that are at a wedding. So, when lover.ly contacted me to do a little bridal look inspired by one of the dresses on their website, preventing transfer was on the front of my mind!

Lover.ly is a wedding planning website that is a bit like Pinterest, but only for weddings, and they have a huge focus on things you can actually purchase or book, in addition to great inspiration. It also has a ton of great search features that help you narrow down what you’re looking for. I’m not getting married any time soon (first, I’d need to find a man, ha!), but when I do, I’m looking forward to using websites like lover.ly!

Bridal Makeup

So of the thousands of dresses on the site, I chose the Monique Lhullier Madison dress, a silk satin mermaid gown, and I love it because of how it balances the dramatic with the effortless. I focused on picking products for the makeup look that last ages when applied and don’t transfer, but I also tried to keep everything luxurious, because that’s what I feel best in!

For the base, I chose YSL’s Fusion Ink Foundation in B30 Almond. It sinks into the skin unbelievably, and no matter how long you wear it, it does not come off onto your hands or clothes, which is key. Plus it photographs really well, despite having SPF. After setting the foundation for extra protection, I applied my Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Diffused Heat from the apples of my cheeks up toward my hairline. And you guessed it, this blush lasts hours. I contoured just a little, and for a touch of luxury, I highlighted the cheekbones with my YSL Touche Eclat in 2.0 Luminous Ivory.

I covered up any darkness under the eye, and primed my eyelids really well before applying NARS eyeshadow in Nepal (middle row, second from left) all over the lid and Brousse #2 (middle row, second from right) in the crease from my NARSissist palette. If you didn’t pick this palette up, you can get these two eyeshadows individually or in a duo from NARS’ permanent collection – the formula is so lovely, and it never creases. I topped the eye look off with a casual cat eye with my Stila Stay All Day Liquid Liner in Intense Black, and I used a nude pencil on the water line to open up my eye. A few swipes of Dior’s Iconic Overcurl mascara, one of my favorites for last-all-day-lashes, and I was done!

For the lips, I went with my all-time favorite NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dolce Vita for a natural, but finished look. Despite a matte finish, this pencil is super comfortable to wear, fades extremely gracefully, and it won’t come off on your poor groom’s lips when he kisses his bride!

Married ladies, what did you wear on your wedding day? Single ladies, what are you looking forward to wearing?

Nice to Meet You, Bobbi

Bobbi Brown

Other than my beloved Corrector, I’ve never used Bobbi Brown products before. I don’t like their eyeshadows, which is usually my draw to new brands, so I’ve somehow overlooked this cosmetics powerhouse. Consider that the past though, because I just made a little Bobbi Brown haul thanks to an extra employee discount, and you can color me impressed!

I’ve heard a lot about the Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick ($44), and since I’d never tried stick foundation, I thought it would be the perfect time to try it. I picked up the color Warm Sand, which is a touch too yellow for me, but I’ll live, I think. I won’t lie, I had to watch a couple YouTube videos to learn how to apply this (Hint: Apply the stick directly to the face and buff it in with a dense brush like the RT Expert Face Brush), but once I learned, I like it! It’s quick to apply, and it feels very light on the skin, which I didn’t expect.

I also picked up another cult product from the brand in the Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner ($24). I chose the Limited Edition color Black Scotch, a gorgeous espresso brown with gold micro glitter (still available here). This was another entirely new product for me, as I’m more of a stick eyeliner girl, so I picked up the recommended Ultra Fine Eyeliner Brush ($27) as well. I’m a convert – I can’t stop wearing this eyeliner. The brush is perfect for the product, and you don’t have to be exact with your application; just smudge it on and go!

For fun, I picked up one of the Art Sticks ($24) as well, in Sunset Orange. These made their rounds on the blogs a little while ago, and I just wasn’t all that enamored, but with a discount, I figured, “why the heck not?” The color is a stunning orange-based red, slightly more coral and muted than MAC’s Lady Danger. I’ve only worn it once, as it isn’t all that season-appropriate, but the formula is lovely, and I appreciate the giant pencil sharpener, because let me tell you, this pencil is enormous.

They also included two samples – the Long-Wear Makeup Remover ($26) and the Extra Repair Eye Cream ($70). The makeup remover is nice, but it doesn’t wow me. The eye cream, however, is the thickest eye cream I’ve ever used. It’s nearly solid in the jar, and it warms up on your fingers when you touch it. It is super hydrating, and I’ve been loving it on these cold winter nights!

So tell me, what are your favorite Bobbi Brown products?

Neutral Palette #12: Smashbox Double Exposure Palette

Smashbox Double Exposure

The Smashbox Double Exposure Palette ($52) was just released a few weeks ago for the holiday season as a dual use (wet or dry) sequel to the Full Exposure nude eyeshadow palette released last year. This is a really interesting release, as I haven’t seen too many palettes marketed for wet-brush use, and if this hasn’t reached UK shores yet, I’m sure it will shortly. But, in the meantime, enjoy this little sneak peek!

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It’s Not Me, It’s You #2

It's Not Me It's You

I consider myself pretty lenient as far as beauty products are concerned – even if a product doesn’t work for me, I automatically conjure up situations where this product would be great for someone else, but I just could not find an excuse for these products. I’ve tried these as many ways as I could think to try them, and I just ended up disappointed.

As far as face products are concerned, there are two products with opposite problems: the Bare Minerals Ready Touch Up Veil ($23) in Translucent, and Benefit’s Fake Up ($24) in Medium. I loved the Bare Minerals veil when I first got it – it’s small, easy to carry around, and it mattifies really well. But, it shattered after one week in my bag, and I carry it in a pretty secure Whistles clutch. Additionally, if you’re not super oily, it feels a bit like chalky baby powder, and I’m just not into it. The concealer has the opposite problem: it sits on the skin and feels greasy all day. It transfers, creases, and does everything you do not want a concealer to do. I just cannot figure this one out.

I also have three eye products that I haven’t been loving, and they may be a little controversial, so hold on to your seats! First up is the NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil ($6) in Milk. I bought this after reading many a review about how much it enhances eyeshadow colors, and it definitely does do that, but it creases after literally 10 minutes! I’ve tried it over multiple primers and haven’t been able to fix that issue. Speaking of primers, I received a sample of the NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base ($25) with a palette purchase at some point, but I find that this is essentially useless – it feels good going on, but it doesn’t actually extend the wear time of my eyeshadows, so it’s an unnecessary step for me. I think I’ll stick with my UD Primer Potion.

Lastly, I have Tarte’s Lights Camera Lashes mascara ($20) on my dislike list, which is a surprise because I typically love Tarte products. It gives fluttery, pretty lashes upon application, but on me, it flakes everywhere. By lunch time, I have little flakes all over my cheek bones, which is just not a cute look.

Does anyone have any tips on how to make these products work? I’d love to hear what y’all think!

A Custom Date Night Dress with eShakti

eShakti Dress

Date night outfits are the hardest when the weather gets cold – how are you supposed to feel sexy when you also have to be warm? I always aim for makeup that makes me feel amazing, and a dress in a classic silhouette, topped off with my leather jacket and an edgy necklace to balance it out. This floral jacquard dress* from eShakti.com has been my favorite fall dress lately, and I’ll tell you what: it’s a stunner, and it was built specifically to fit me!  READ MORE

October Favorites

October Favorites

I could have sworn that Halloween was, like, yesterday, and yet suddenly we are halfway through November…how did that even happen? Pretend with me though, that it’s still the end of October, because I had some pretty good beauty favorites last month!

My lips have been a bit chapped lately, so I’ve stayed away from lipstick and played up my eyes most days, which made my LORAC Behind the Scenes Eyeshadow Primer ($21) and my MAC Paint Pot ($21) in Soft Ochre clutch for me this month. I expect a lot out of my eye makeup – 15 hours days with no creasing – so I’ve tried quite a few different eye primers, and the combination of the MAC over the LORAC has been the winner.

On days where I want to play up my eyes, but I don’t have 10 extra minutes to spend on eyeshadow, I have just been throwing on some cobalt blue liner and mascara and running out the door. The L’Oreal Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner ($9) in Cobalt Blue is a really great drugstore eyeliner. I’ve been paring it with a L’Oreal mascara that I believe has been discontinued in the blue, but you can find plenty of other blue mascara options at all price points (See NYX, MUFE, Sephora or Dior). Blue sounds extreme, but it looks surprisingly subtle when applied – if you want to play with color, but you don’t feel all that comfortable with it, this is a great place to start.

With all this eye makeup, I’ve been relying on Rimmel’s Blush ($7.50) in Santa Rose. This is, unfortunately, not available in the states, but you can get ahold of it from ASOS or FeelUnique. This made its rounds on blogs last year, and I entirely understand its popularity! It’s a nice, soft rose that looks extremely natural on the skin.

Last but not least, I received the Ayres Patagonia Body Butter ($28) in an Ipsy bag last month, and it’s one of the best I have used! This puts every other body butter (including the Body Shop’s classic one) to shame. It’s super thick, but it sinks into the skin in seconds and moisturizes really well, plus it doesn’t have a strong scent, which is tough to find in a body butter. I’ve been relatively disappointed with Ipsy lately, but I will definitely be purchasing the full size of this one.

What have you been loving lately? Feel free to leave your links to your October favorites in the comments!

Can’t Live Without ‘em…

Lipstick Live Ins

Like most girls, my bag is full of junk, and I have no idea how it all got in there. These lip products basically live in my bag, and when I was cleaning it out recently, I found myself putting these back in because I know that I use them all the time!

I carry two  lip balms – my trusty Eucerin Aquaphor ($5) and the blogger-favorite Nuxe Reve de Miel ($19). I love them both equally, and I use them differently, depending on the weather. The Nuxe one is a bit more matte, and the Aquaphor is more like vaseline, but  both are fantastic.

The Clinique Almost Lipstick ($16) in Black Honey is my new favorite fall lip product. It is moisturizing, and it gives the lips a nice berry flush that isn’t too obvious. Plus, it’s sheer, so you can apply it without a mirror.

I did a full review of that stunning Givenchy Le Rouge ($36) lipstick in Brun Createur, so I won’t rave too much about it here, but it is my favorite lipstick color to date. It’s a stunning dusty rose. I typically pull this out after work when I’m running to drinks or dinner and my makeup needs a little touching up.

And of course, I have a couple of NARS lip pencils just in case. The red shade is the NARS Satin Lip Pencil ($25) in Majella, a berry-based red that wears well and is perfect for fall, and the pinker shade is the Velvet Matte Lip Pencil ($25) in Dolce Vita, which is essentially the same color as the Givenchy lipstick, but it’s matte. It doubles as a lipliner for that lipstick as well!

I love these, and I don’t plan on taking these out of my bag any time soon – what do y’all carry around?

Neutral Palette #11: Wet N Wild Comfort Zone Palette

Wet n Wild Comfort Zone Palette

Wet n Wild is known for being a bit whimsical, and their rendition of the neutral palette is no exception.The Color Icon Comfort Zone palette ($5) is definitely wearable, but their shade choices are pretty unique! Obviously, you don’t get much by way of packaging, but that’s not what counts, right? The pigmentation is good; the blendability is good, and overall, I was pleasantly surprised.

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The Perfect Lipstick

Givenchy Le Rouge

Givenchy Le Rouge

You know that lipstick that is the perfect color and the perfect formula for every occasion? This is mine. I was looking for something a little creamier that matched the shade of the NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil ($25) in Dolce Vita, so I used Temptalia’s dupe search to find one! The closes match was Givenchy’s Le Rouge ($36) in 103 Brun Createur, and as soon as I applied it, I was absolutely sold.

This is absolutely the best color. It is my “my-lips-but-better” shade, even though there is nothing neutral about it. It is a dusty rose that looks great during the day, and in the evening. There is something about this color that just makes it my favorite to wear all the time – I carry it in my bag nonstop! I’ve never put it on and then second guessed my decision to wear it (which I, personally, do with other lipsticks all the time).

The formula is super creamy, lasts about 5 hours, and leaves a really nice stain behind. It is opaque in one swipe and wears like a balm. And on an entirely superficial level, the leather packaging is unreal! I would highly encourage you all go pick one of these little beauties up. It’s worth the price tag.

What is your all-time favorite lip shade?

September Favorites

September Favorites

My September favorites are a little bit travel-driven, as I traveled quite a bit last month. I’m the worst when it comes to packing – I end up just throwing everything into a suitcase the morning-of, so I need to be able to grab beauty products quickly.

I’ve been using this Covergirl Professional Natural Lash Mascara ($5) in Clear for my brows almost every day. If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you’ll know that my brows have a mind of their own, so most days, I use this mascara as a makeshift brow gel, to keep those little guys in line.

I’ve also been loving these cute little hairties that my sister and I made while I was visiting her at school. We bought elastic ribbon for $2 from a craft store, cut, and tied them ourselves, so they are the perfect length for my hair – they wrap three times tightly, or two times for a looser pony. You can make 20+ out of one roll of elastic!

That cute little eyeshadow on the bottom is from the Korean brand Missha ($6) in the shade GBR01, a gorgeous, glittery, rose gold. My friend, C, and I went to the giant Chinatown in Queens recently, and we obviously had to check out the the Korean beauty products there. Stay tuned for a haul from that trip!

Two palettes made the favorites list this month: the new Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush ($58) palette, and the Naked Basics 2 ($29). Both are compact, and all encompassing, which have made them perfect for all the quick weekend trips I’ve been taking this past month. Both are new releases, and they are both so versatile and lovely. The blushes are slightly radiant, and the eyeshadows are entirely matte, and I find that they compliment each other really well.

Last but not least, I pulled out an old favorite this month in the Rimmel Lasting Finish 25 Hour Foundation ($8) in 102 Warm Ivory. I’m not sure about the whole 25 hour claim, but I wore it to a football game, where I spent 12 hours outside, and this stuff didn’t budge! It has a pretty solid medium coverage, and while it definitely can’t hold a candle to a more expensive foundation, it does a great job for the price.

What were your favorites this past month?

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