Monday, March 12, 2012

Too Faced Matte and Smokey Eye Palettes Review

Many months ago, I decided to splurge on the Matte Eye palette by Too Faced (displayed above) and then last week I purchased the Smokey Eye palette (displayed on the right). While I absolutely love creating new makeups, there are days when I just like to apply makeup and not have to do a whole lot of thinking about it... obviously, it happens more on a weekday morning. ;) I tend to like palettes for that kind of situation and I have to say that these palettes by Too Faced fulfill that need very well.

The advantage with these palettes is that one look consists of a row. You generally apply the left-most color on your brow bone, the middle color on the eyelid, and the right-most color on the crease and voila! They provide little cards to explain to you how to apply the makeup but, quite frankly, the application nearly always is what I described so I'm not sure how useful they are.

If you feel like trying out something different, you can totally use the colors in a different scheme. There isn't going to be like a palette police that will show up and fine you for going off of the "prescribed" order. :p So have fun!

I am using the Matte Eye palette for work. I find that the colors are very pretty with a good payload and have a nice muted tone that is perfect for work.

I used the Smokey Eye palette for work 2 days last week and, well, it may have been a bit intense for work. People don't bat an eye too much at me as I'm very eccentric but they were noticing me more, for sure... and I wasn't sure if it was appreciative or not. So I'm not sure that I'll use for work again unless I'm in the mood to fully stand out. :p That being said, the contrast between the colors is big enough that these colors would actually be stage worthy!

Except for the big eyeshadow to be applied on the brow bone, the other ones are small size so you will need to use a smaller brush to apply. Again, payload for all those is real good so the colors pretty much will look exactly like they do in the palette. (I hate when the colors lie. :p)

Those palettes run at about 36$ each. They each give you 3 looks: "day", "classic", and "fashion". So that's like 12$ for each look. Not bad at all. They have a few additional different palettes: naked eye, natural eye, natural at night, and romantic eye.

Obviously, I liked the first palette so much that I bought a second one. I would definitely recommend these palettes to anyone who is interested in intense colors and giving your brain a break. ;)

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A few of my favorite things

So here are a few of my favorite items when it comes to makeup and general skin care as well. Those are products that I prefer not to leave home without. There's a whole lot more products that I really really like but that would make for way too long of a post. ;) Oh and I'm not even including my stage makeup products either, although I use some of these products for stage as well. ;)

Shea Butter Hand Cream by L'Occitane: I have very dry hands and this cream is marvelous. I have a big tube at my desk at work and apply at least twice daily. What's awesome (and should be an indication since I keep it at work) is that it's not greasy and is absorbed readily.

Dr. Hunter Foot Comfort Cream: It works very well for me to give back suppleness to my calluses while not completely getting rid of them. (I'll do a blog for dancers on that topic. ;))

Photo Finish Foundation Primer by Smashbox (original formulation/color): This is a colorless primer that I use under my foundation. It smooths my skin thoroughly, making it easier for the foundation to glide on. I'm old enough that I'm starting to get wrinkles and fine lines so this smooths it all out and they disappear more readily under the foundation. :D This primer feels oily but it's not. It's just the formulation that makes it feel that way.

Shadow Insurance by Too Faced: This is an eye primer. I always use it before applying any eyeshadow, whether I apply one color or more, for everyday use or for stage. I'll blog more about this specifically but if you've ever had issues with your eye shadows staying put, consider using an eye primer. Back when I started using eye primers, the one by Urban Decay called Primer Potion came in this beautiful little bottle with a cutesy wand... and I hated that wand. Now that Primer Potion comes in a tube too. Product-wise, for me, it was a toss up between the two in that I liked the formulations about as much. So I could switch to the Primer Potion but I'm used to the Shadow Insurance so I'll keep on using it. ;)

HD Microfinish Powder by Make Up For Ever: I love love love this powder! I wear it over my foundation as my loose powder. I can tell the difference between where I applied and where I didn't. It's really that great! Also, if I'm in a rush to get out the door and don't have time to apply foundation, I'll apply a coat of just the powder and it smooths my skin enough. I don't know how many times I've purchased this product now. I just can't live without it. ;)

Bye Bye Under Eye by It Cosmetics: This is one of my latest finds. I purchased it b/c it was on uber sale on that website around the Holidays... and I needed to round my shopping cart to get free shipping. And I'm really digging this product. A little goes a very long way. It provides great coverage for the under eye area but I use it as a general concealer as well. What's more, it has vitamins that are good for your skin.

Cream Eyeliner by E.L.F.: Well, I did do a review on this recently but, yes, it's now in my list of products that I couldn't live without. ;)

Monday, March 5, 2012

Some good links

(I have only a bit of time to share information today... and, well, life has been crazy for a bit so apologies for this blog not being as well tended to as I'd like.)

I often purchase my makeup via online stores. I don't necessarily get a better deal that way (though sometimes I do) but I'm such a makeup addict that it's actually safer for my budget if I don't physically walk into a makeup store. Though, obviously, even then, I sometimes will go overboard online too but it's a tad easier for me to rein myself in online. ;)

Sephora's website where you can find almost anything you need. They have a reward program where you get points for every dollar spent. You can get big samples after 100 points (i.e., having spent 100$) or exclusive items for 500 points. The points never expire and the membership is free. If you spend a lot each year, you can become a VIB (Very Important Buyer) where you get exclusive perks. And, huh, yes, I'm a VIB. So there's no real fee to it, it's totally based on how much you spend per year. The caveat with the Sephora website is that the free shipping point is 50$ so you need to spend that much to get it... that's really not hard for me to reach that number.

MAC's website. There is rarely any discount on anything MAC nor are there perks unless you are a licensed makeup artist. That being said, if, like me, you can't walk into a MAC store without overpurchasing, buying online is a boon. Plus, they always have the color that you're looking for (not always so at stores). If you sign up for their offers, you will get codes for free shipping on like a weekly basis and you'll get to see the new products right away. Again, ordering them online may ensure that you get the products.

Skin Store website: This is where I purchase the near majority of my skin care products. They have routinely sales of about 20% off of skin care products. Sometimes those sales even includes the makeup options that they have there. There is no membership with perks but, hey, a discount upfront is well received. Just like Sephora, the free shipping point is 50$ so, again, you need to purchase at least that much. For skin care products, though, that goes very fast so I rarely have to buy more than just my skin care (unless I want to). website: It's a two in one in that you have access to both sites. It's more of a hodge podge of stuff than the other sites but you can find all kinds of things... it just doesn't feel as comprehensive as other sites. However, their free shipping price point is 25$ so that's much easier to reach. And you get 5% cash back that you can put on your next order, which is nice too.

This is the site where I get my Ben Nye and Mehron makeup products. I have also had some luck on eBay but it really depends. And, well, they have a comprehensive list of products there so that helps if you need to purchase a bunch of items. No discount on shipping, though, nor perks.


While I'm on the topic of links, here are some links to makeup tutorial ladies that I follow regularly:

Panacea81 aka Lauren Luke is the very first lady that I started following and watching her makeup tutorials. I learned a ton of tips and tricks from her. She does have a funky accent. ;) She often will take requests of specific makeups from celebrities.

Makeup Geek is a makeup artist from MI. She also does great work and I love her tutorials too. She also does a whole lot of products reviews.

Queen of Blending: That lady deserves her nickname! She blends makeup like no other! She's been doing some weird makeups lately but, while they'd be way over the top for everyday life, some of them are very stage worthy. Remember that it can almost never be too much for stage. ;) But you can also look up older makeup tutorials as well, of course.