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Beauty Haul Preview: W7 IN THE NUDE & IN THE BUFF: LIGHTLY TOASTED plus almost EVERY NYX Eye Brow Product-

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bought these for 7 bucks each on eBay- they arrived 3 days ago from the UK.

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I did a quickie swatch thing on my arm and will say right now that without water or a primer, there will be issues with the lighter colors not showing up

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the packaging was nice, I loved the little tins. Lighter colors are not as pigmented as I would like.

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5 different NYX eyebrow products that I will be trying and reviewing soon

I will review these the next time I am able to wear makeup. Hoping the brow stuff works (at least ONE of them…)

I bought the NYX brow things in one fell swoop at Target the day that I did my failed Wet n Wild brow review.

W7 is a popular drugstore brand from the UK. Their nude eye shadow palettes have been making news on the interwebs as great dupes for Urban Decay’s Naked eyeshadow palette.

The W7 palettes require an eye shadow primer or water for the lighter colors. When I did a quick swatch test on my arm, they barely showed up.

11

MY HORRIFYING LIPSTICK NIGHTMARE: Stila Look At Me Liquid Lipstick in Bella- A Birchbox Sample Review

don't let this little innocent vial fool you- inside dwells certain evil

don’t let this little innocent vial fool you- inside dwells certain evil

Let me first state the obvious:

I have very big lips.

Lipsticks, glosses, balms- these are my thing. I was so excited when I received this sample in my Birchbox this month- the rest of that review is HERE.

That excitement QUICKLY turned to dismay, then horror, then a total FREAKOUT when I realized that this stuff WASN’T COMING OFF WITHOUT A FIGHT.

a little crooked, but it was the best I could do with what I had. Notice the insides and how much a stark contrast there is?

a little crooked, but it was the best I could do with what I had. Notice the insides and how much of a stark contrast there is?

It started innocently enough- received my cute, nicely sized sample in my Birchbox. The color was a shade of hot pink called “Bella”. I love hot pink lipstick, so I opened it up and tried it on immediately.

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Even with the lipbrush, making this stuff go on evenly was almost impossible

HUGE mistake.

Half way through the application process, I realized that I needed a lip brush immediately. Even with the brush, it was VERY difficult to get an even application. This lipstick was NOT forgiving. Even worse, it only wanted to adhere to the DRY OUTER EDGES of my lips, leaving the insides looking totally and shockingly bare.

my kabuki clown meets vagina lips

my kabuki clown meets vagina lips

When I tried to remove the stuff, it WOULD NOT BUDGE.

I first applied Pond’s Cold Cream and tried to scrape it all off with a wash rag.

NOPE, didn’t work… so, I applied the cold cream a couple more times and continued scrubbing.

this is the second or third time I smeared cold cream on my lips

this is the second or third time I smeared cold cream on my lips

FINALLY, after a vigorous and painful washing of my lower face, I was able to get most of it off.

now my lips are swollen from all the freaking attempts at washing this off. Plus I was rewarded with pink all over my lower face and chin.

now my lips are swollen from all the freaking attempts at washing this off. Plus I was rewarded with pink all over my lower face and chin.

From all the scrubbing, I was rewarded with hideously swollen lips and a pink color all over my lower face and chin.

Would I buy this crap?  HELL NO.

I hope it works for you, because this stuff is NEVER coming in contact with my skin again, ever. EVER.

I hate this stuff.

Rating: -2857 outta 5

3

My First Birchboxes Arrived! Birchbox and Birchbox Man reviews!!!! Plus the Stila Liquid Lipstick turned me ino Kabuki Clown Meets Vagina Mouth

Birchbox and Birchbox Man boxes- the man's box was 2x the size of the regular box- which I would expect, considering it is 20 bucks a month for man vs 10 bucks for the women's subscription

Birchbox and Birchbox Man boxes- the man’s box was 2x the size of the regular box- which I would expect, considering it is 20 bucks a month for man vs 10 bucks for the women’s subscription

My very first Birchbox and Birchbox Man subscriptions arrived on Monday, which was fantastic since it was R’s birthday… I bought him the subscription for his gift. I think I am enjoying it far more than he would. I will review the Birchbox Man box first:

the first thing we saw in the Birchbox Man package was this small Mizu water bottle- probably only good for toting the baby's water

the first thing we saw in the Birchbox Man package was this small Mizu water bottle- probably only good for toting the baby’s water

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really cute and high quality- retails for $16.95- but SUPER small. Would be ideal for a small child.

The first thing we saw when opening the Birchbox Man package was a teeny (child sized, really) Mizu Water bottle. It retails for $16.95 on the Birchbox site. R gave it to C, because he uses much bigger liter sized water bottles and this one was far too small. C will probably end up giving it back to me for Maisie at some point.

the Birchbox Man box this month was very nice and stylish. It's twice as big as the regular Birchboxes.

the Birchbox Man box this month was very nice and stylish. It’s twice as big as the regular Birchboxes.

The Birchbox Man box is twice as big as a regular Birchbox- which it should be considering it costs twice as much!

Birthday boy attempting to assemble the weird virtual reality viewer

Birthday boy attempting to assemble the weird virtual reality viewer

This month’s samples included:

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the samples were nicely sized, especially the face wash.

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conditioner sample could have been bigger- I LOVED the parfum.

Ursa Major Fantastic Face Wash
Birchbox Man + River Virtual Reality Viewer
Hanz de Fuko Natural Shampoo
Hanz de Fuko Natural Conditioner
CoSTUME National Eau de Parfum SCENT INTENSE 

Supergoop! Forever Young Hand Cream with Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 40
Tommy John Cool Cotton Trunk (undies)

I cannot tell you how much this box was worth- but I know that the underwear is 29.00 on Birchbox- add that to the Mizu bottle and those two items alone were worth about $45.00, which isn’t bad considering the box itself was $20.00.

We couldn’t figure out the virtual reality viewer. He liked the shampoo and conditioner. I LOVED the parfum- which is actually a UNISEX fragrance that reminded me of men’s Bvlgari cologne.

Pretty little box!

Pretty little box!

My Birchbox Subscription Box:

after opening the Birchbox Man first, my box was a bit anticlimatic

after opening the Birchbox Man first, my box was a bit anticlimatic

this box contained:

stila look at me liquid lipstick in Bella (hot pink)
Harvey Prince Hello, Limited Edition (perfume)
Supergoop! Daily Correct CC cream SPF 35+
Bumble and bumble Thickening Hairspray
derma e Anti-Wrinkle Vitamin A Glycolic Scrub

contents of the pink box inside my subscription box

contents of the pink box inside my subscription box

Let me start off by saying how much I HATED, HATED, HATED the liquid lipstick! I will be doing an in-depth review soon, but here’s a sneak peek:

don't let this little innocent vial fool you- inside dwells certain evil

don’t let this little innocent vial fool you- inside dwells certain evil

stila liquid lipstick in BELLA- SOOO HORRIBLE! Made my mouth look like a vagina.

stila liquid lipstick in BELLA- SOOO HORRIBLE!
Made my mouth look like a vagina.

This crap CLUNG to the dryer parts of my mouth and wouldn’t adhere to the insides, leaving my lips looking like Kabuki Clown Meets Vagina Mouth.  I loved the color, but HELL NO re the formula.  Again, leaving the review for another post, as it DESERVES an closer look at the nightmare I endured.

I didn’t get a chance to try the perfume in my box because I was too busy spraying myself with the Birchbox Man sample. I LOVED the CC cream and the face scrub.

Total for the regular Birchbox: no idea. It’s 3 am and math is not my strong suit.

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Confessions of a Makeup Hoarder: It’s Time To Organize My Stash… And It’s The Most PAINFUL Thing For Me To Do.

pic is not actually *my* makeup, but you get the idea...

pic is not actually *my* makeup, but you get the idea…

I am a makeup hoarder. I admit it.

Am I the only one out there who has this same problem?

I think it started with my mother, who is an obsessive compulsive Filipino EVERYTHING hoarder. She used to get those Cosmetique monthly makeup subscriptions in the mail way back in the late 1970s-80s. Her bathroom was (and still IS) chock full of every makeup and perfume known to man. She even has lipsticks so old that the innards are a waxy, dry mess- but they are in gold metal cases and probably circa 1940s or 1950s, so she’ll never part with them.

my mom actually owns lipsticks like these!

my mom actually owns antique lipsticks like these!

My makeup stash, which consists of 2 or 3 professional trunk cases, one HUGE plastic 4′ tall cabinet with many drawers, and carelessly tossed beauty bags filled to the brim with things I’ve long forgotten about. I have Nars, MAC, Lorac, Chanel just tossed in with the L’Oreal, NYX, and Maybelline. Some of these cases haven’t even been OPENED in years. The last time I viewed the contents of one particular makeup trunk, I’d used it to do makeup for some stage production I acted in about 3 yrs ago.

It’s THAT bad.

Did I mention that I am not very organized? I always STRIVE to be, but somehow fall short…

small disorganized stash I found in my upstairs bathroom

small disorganized stash I found in my upstairs bathroom

I *know* that I need to throw away about 70-90 percent of the makeup I own. I actually WANT to do this- but it PAINS me, almost physically. Ok, I admit it. It *does* hurt physically.

I’m a mess.

My frugal bits remember how much some of this stuff cost and I cringe- CRINGE- when I think of tossing it in the rubbish pile. It makes absolutely NO sense, but that’s the truth of it.

I did the unthinkable this month and ordered subscriptions to Ipsy, Birchbox, and Birchbox Man in one fell swoop. I figured that I spend AT LEAST 40 bucks a month in miscellaneous beauty products, so it’s a good deal.  However, the thought of having more makeup and product haphazardly strewn around my house frightens me. I’ve already run out of room in my ‘makeup storage area’.

Even as I try to type this, my beauty product hoarding continues.  For example, I bought a kabuki set of 32 cosmetic brushes tonight on eBay. My reasoning was that I couldn’t find half of my (dozens) of current brushes and I distrust my brush cleaning skills. I also bought two 24 compartment acrylic lipstick organizers- they were a great deal. I like deals. I love lipstick… do you see the way my impetuous mind works here? Did I NEED any of these things?!

I found these in my upstairs bathroom.  They are the exact same color.  WHY did I need TWO of these?!

I found these in my upstairs bathroom. They are the exact same color. WHY did I need TWO of these?!

No. Nope. Sure didn’t.

So, instead of ACTUALLY CLEANING OUT my stash, I went on google to find other beauty hoarders.

I am delaying the inevitable, I know this.

Lo and Behold! I found the blog of a beauty hoarding person EXACTLY LIKE ME- I could have written that post- except I AM FAR, FAR WORSE!!

http://stylecaster.com/beauty-high/confessions-of-a-makeup-hoarder/#slide-2

I am going to start small- my upstairs bathroom has my ’emergency makeup’ in it. That is where the first of my purging endeavors will begin.

Wish me luck!

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On Blending and Contouring… A Real World Makeup Adventure on an OLDER Face

Me, after the contouring/spackle business, with hair in pincurls.

Me, after the contouring/spackle business, with hair in pincurls.

Blending and contouring have been big, big things since… forever.

Kim Kardashian has been blowing up the blending/contouring makeup world with numerous videos.

If you search on youtube, a zillion tutorials will pop up:

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=kardashian+contouring+tutorial

This post was inspired by a recent blog done by Elizabeth over at ElizabethandLipstick.com– it’s a great makeup blog and she’s lovely, check it out.  That is how it is supposed to look on dewy, fresh young faces.

How would the SAME technique work on an older person?  Let’s find out:

Before I had a baby and before my botox melted, this would have been a do-able ‘going out’ look.

As most women will find, a lighter hand is needed the older and more wrinkly one gets.

The brush that once would have made for a flawless complexion is replaced by the beauty blending spongy thing.

Care must be taken to keep the crap from settling in the teeny lines- which it WILL DO- or to keep it from smearing like that old lady in that 1993 Little Caesar’s pizza commercial:

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this is my holy grail of under eye concealers- covers beautifully and doesn’t crease/budge.

Since I NOW have an ‘au naturel’ 46 yr old face- thanks to a 10 month old with separation anxiety and inability to be put down long enough so I can PEE- full on MAKEUP TIME is merely a special occasion endeavor.

Other things to remember when laying down that spackle, older ladies:

1. Your face is either going to be too dry or too oily, or both.  Switch up your products.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Amazing Concealer by Amazing Cosmetics.  It barely budges or creases, no matter how humid the weather.  It doesn’t make you look like a decrepit, decaying wax doll, either.

2. Go EASY on that setting powder, EVEN IF YOU HAVE A LOT OF BOTOX.  Nothing shows fine lines like a dusting of powder around the eyes.  Yeah, I know we may need it, but damn. It’s not fun to look at one’s face too closely. Sometimes I am glad that our up close eye sight is failing.

3. Use a wet beauty blender sponge- it gives a more sheer coverage- and you can use your fingers to layer more on and blend, blend, blend- BLEND- and blend some more. Remember back in the day when your mom or grandma used Pan-Cake makeup and the wet sponge?  Same damned thing, different name and shape.

these egg shaped sponges are the BOMBDIGGITY, girls.

these egg shaped Beauty Blender sponges are the BOMBDIGGITY, girls.

4. Invest in a good MAGNIFYING MIRROR, the higher the magnification, the better.  Get big ones, small ones, purse sized ones. They are SO worth it.  Nothing worse than blindly trying to glue some false eyelashes on and having the strip somehow adhere to your makeup smeared reading glasses… sad, but true.  (Yes, younger women reading this- you will someday experience these things as well- prepare for the inevitable NOW.)

5. Is your face starting to lose that luster, that sparkle it once had?  Are you getting that peri-menopausal powdery older lady skin?  Chemical peels/dermabrasion/laser treatments help with that.  A good highlighter cream or powder (that sparkly stuff) also works wonders.  LORAC used to make an excellent one. Lately, I’ve been loving Sonia Kashuk’s Chic Luminosity Highlighter Stick in Sparkling Sands.  It’s a dupe for Benefit’s WATT’S UP! at a fraction of the price.  It’s sheer and it’s wearable with or without foundation.  Excellent product.

6. Don’t be lazy like I am.  Use a makeup primer and eye makeup primer.  Those things rock. They even out skin imperfections and disguise pores, some lines, and help the makeup STAY ON YOUR FACE. There’s a crotch itch/thigh rubbing cream sold in the lady bits section of stores that has the exact SAME INGREDIENTS as one of the most popular primers, but the name escapes me. I *do* know that it costs about $4 vs $30 for the primo stuff.

Now for the contouring/highlighting parts:

I actually used this tutorial from GlamBoothTv’s youtube site- it’s great and you can blow it up nice and full screen while you slap that makeup on your face:

Here is a list of the makeup used for the contouring:

Primer: Urban Decay Eyeshadow Priming Potion on eye lids
Concealer: Amazing Concealer in I can’t read the freaking small print on this tube
Foundation: Revlon Colorstay 24 Hours Whipped Creme Makeup in 220 Nude
Contouring (dark color): Clinique Perfectly Real Makeup in Shade 44; some matte brown eyeshadow for the nose
Highlighter(s): Sonia Kashuk’s Chic Luminosity Highlighter Stick in Sparkling Sands
Powder: Revlon Age Defying Powder with DNA Advantage in Medium; also used Coty Airspun Face Powder in Light/Medium Neutral Tone

Up close around the nose and eyes.  Yeah, someone needs to give me a tutorial on how to get those modern 'square front' brows!

Up close around the nose and eyes. Yeah, someone needs to give me a tutorial on how to get those modern ‘square front’ brows!

I did exactly (well, almost… as much as possible) as the video instructed.  I seriously need a tutorial on the mod new brow thing all you gals are doing.  I am BEGGING you.  Step by step… please.

The look was a bit disconcertingly heavy after the last 2 yrs of minimal makeup.  My undereye area is in need of some filler in the tear trough region.  I knew that the foundation would settle as I did my hair, which it did.  All in all, I was pleased with the results, but it isn’t a do-able look for me for everyday.  My skin has learned to BREATHE in the interim and no longer will stand for thick makeup daily.

all the contours and highlights, ducklips and all- on my vintage head.

all the contours and highlights, ducklips and all- on my vintage head.

One thing I dared NOT do once this concoction was applied to my face was:  KISS, TALK MUCH, SMILE, let anyone touch my head.  I had to put a plastic grocery bag (yeah, bad for the environment, yadda…) over my head and had to let someone help pull the clothes on.

All this “Kardashian-ness” is hard work.  I was worried about the makeup staining the neckline of my outfit.

I have to admit, all the contouring and highlighting (or ‘strobing’, as I’ve seen the kids call it now) is way too 1990s flashback for me.  I felt less like Kim and more like Kris Jenner mated with the newly minted Caitlyn by the end of this.  Eat your hearts out, fellow momagers…

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the end result wasn’t terribly bad, once I put the lippie on and did something to the hair.  I still kinda scream “MOMAGER”, though.

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this is a look that, on an older woman like myself, says “I survived the 1980s and 1990s and I have the hair to prove it” #bighairdontcare