Category Archives: Eyes

MAC Pro Longwear Concealer: Loving it!

A new product has been added to my list of fave concealers and it is MAC’s Pro Longwear Concealer. It gives good coverage, is easy to blend, has decent lasting power and a nice smooth matte finish.

The only con I have to say about it is that after about 5 to 6 hours, it started to give my undereye areas that subtle cakey look. Still, that may just be something that happens with me. What I really like about this product is a little of it goes a long way. Also, its use is not strictly limited to covering dark undereyes – it can be used on the whole face if needed. I personally like using it as an undereye concealer.

Have any of you tried MAC’s Pro Longwer Concealer? What are your thoughts?

A rave about some new faves: MAC’s Studio Sculpt Foundation and UDPP in Eden

(For those of you that are not familiar with the abbreviation: UDPP = Urban Decay Primer Potion.)

MAC Studio Sculpt Foundation
To many of us beauty junkies, there is nothing more heavenly than a foundation that glides onto your skin so smoothly, blends in so effortlessly, camouflages and covers up skin flaws so brilliantly that it leaves you with a finish so flawless and natural that it looks as though you’re not wearing any foundation at all. You know that when you find a foundation that does that for your skin, your search for the ultimate one has come to an end. Nevertheless, no two people will benefit from the same product in exactly the same way so if the one I’m going to rave about in a moment doesn’t work for you, fear not and have faith, because the holy grail of foundations for you is still out there. You just need to keep searching.

I have found my (current) holy grain of foundations and I am reveling in the discovery of it because it is working marvelously for my skin type. The Studio Sculpt Foundation by MAC has been a dear, dear friend to me for quite some time now. I admit that I purchased the product quite a while back but I never came around to using it until a few weeks ago because I am not a big fan on using foundation during the summer heat (and if you live in the UAE, you know what I am talking about.) I am also not a big fan of creamy foundation but this one has such a nice gel-based consistency to it that it doesn’t leave my skin feeling like it’s under an inch of makeup. The product claims to provide medium buildable to high coverage which is, indeed, true. While I don’t suffer from acne or break-outs (thank goodness those years are behind me!), I do sometimes develop patches of slight redness on my cheeks and around my mouth (due to the summer heat or over-using my face wash/face lotion) and this foundation does a reallllly good job of camouflaging them and evening out my skin tone. It also provides a really smooth and soft matte finish (a “natural satin finish”, according to the product’s description.)

I have oily skin and even though this product claims to be “hydrating” – which means it may contain moisturizing ingredients –  it doesn’t leave my skin feeling or looking oily or shiny, whatsoever. As most of you must know, foundations that claim to be hydrating are a big no-no for people with oily skin types because they tend to leave us with that shiny-face look before the end of the day but since MAC’s Studio Sculpt Foundation is officially oil-free, I give it the thumbs up for people with oily skin (and all other skin types, too.) However, I would recommend that people with dry and sensitive skin use adequate moisturizer before applying the foundation – just to be on the safe side and ensure that it doesn’t dry up or irritate your skin.

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion in Eden
For those of you that suffer from eyelids that tend to get oily and/or crease your eyeshadow almost immediately, this may be the product you need. I actually found this version of Urban Decay’s Eyeshadow Primer Potion to be the best for my eyelids due to its uber mattifying effect. It prevents my eyelids from getting oily and keeps my eyeshadow crease-free and intact for a good long time throughout the day (about 6 to 7 hours) without having to do any touch-ups. I find this eyeshadow primer to be especially useful for special evening events or occasions that include a lot of picture-taking and dancing because it really enhances the colors of my eye makeup and provides it with really good staying power.

Don’t take my word for it, though. Consider trying the UDPP in Eden at your local SEPHORA store (or any other beauty stores that sell Urban Decay cosmetics) and let me know what you think 😉

Summer Makeup: flash those colors!

Every summer, my makeup style changes to include colors that are more flashy, vibrant and fun. Summer is the season of sunny weather, outdoorsy fun and beach parties (at least, in most parts of the world) and what better way is there to express your summer personality than through your makeup? (Rhetorical question!)

Face:
Where the sun shines, so does your skin…from all that grease and oiliness. So, unless you have extremely dry skin, you want to make sure you use foundation that is oil-free and has a matte-finish…and, just in case, seal everything with powder. In fact, during the summer, I try to use only face powder as a “foundation” because it helps absorb any oiliness and keeps the shiny-face look at bay! (I recommend MAC’s Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation. For a cheaper alternative, I recommend Maybelline’s Pure Stay Powder Foundation.) You still need to moisturize first, though, so don’t skip the moisturizer just ’cause you think your skin won’t need it in the summer. Trust me, summer is when your skin needs moisturizer the most. People with normal to oily skin should opt for a matte-effect, oil-free moisturizer.

Cheeks:
I love the refreshing blusher colors one can experiment with in the summer. Coral and peachy colors are in this season. If you want that orange-peachy color flattering your cheeks, you might want to try MAC’s Peaches (Pure Peach Sheertone) blusher. If you’re looking for a pinkish-peach shade, check out Revlon’s Perfectly Peach Matte Powder Blush. Other nice blushers with similar shades are: CORALista by Benefit (a warm coral pink), ELF Studio Blush in Peachy Keen and Candid Coral, L’Oreal True Match Blush in Barely Blushing and NYX Powder Blush in Peach.

 Lips:
Baby pink pouts, peachy smiles and coral lips will give you that ultimate summer-siren look. Revlon’s Mattle Lipsticks in Sky Pink and Smoked Peach will compliment your summer tan. MAC’s Satin-finish Lipstick in Peachstock will give your lips a warm peachy color and its Cremesheen-finish Lipstick in Ravishing will create a coral-peachy look. NYX’s Round Lipstick in Harmonica will have your lips glowing bright baby pink! Other lipsticks in nice summer shades are: Revlon Colorburst Lipstick in Pink Sugar and Baby Pink, MAC’s Cremesheen-finish Lipstick in Shy Girl, NYX’s Round Lipstick in Summer Love, Sunflower and Watermelon and Maybelline’s Color Sensational Lipcolors in Coral Crush and Peachy Scene.

Eyes:
To compliment the bright summer shades being used on the cheeks and lips, barely-there eyeshadow looks are usually the best. In fact, it’s the eyelashes that you really want to focus on right now. For eyeshadow, it would be wise to stick to neutral to sheer-light colors – any shade that brightens the eye area in a subtle way – because you’re going to be packing on the mascara for a fresh-eyed summer look. Some eyeshadow summer shades to consider: MAC’s Matte eyeshadow in Gesso, its Velvet eyeshadows in Vanilla and Vapour, its Satin eyeshadows in Brule and Shroom, its Frost eyeshadows in Nylon and Ricepaper and NYX’s eyeshadows in Highlight, Barely There and Hot Crystal. Now, when I say mascara, I am not referring to the intense black kind that gives you that false-lash effect. In fact, in the summer, you should try sticking to mascara in shades of brown – the kind that will define your lashes to just the right degree. You could also opt for a mascara in a different color, such as blue or purple, that will make your lashes pop out in a colorful way. So, if you don’t have a mascara in brown (or any other non-black color), then go out there and find the one you like. Maybelline, Rimmel and Max Factor are just a few brands that sell mascaras in different colors.

An Eyeshadow Rave.

So far, I’ve talked about several types of beauty products but I have yet to mention anything about eyeshadow. In this post, I’m going to list my favorite brands of eyeshadow (in no particular order) and I’ll let you in on why I like ’em so much!

1) Urban Decay:

Other than the fact that this brand has some really funky-looking eyeshadow palettes, its eyeshadow pigmentation is superb. Every color of eyeshadow that I have tried from Urban Decay has proved to be so richly pigmented that just one or two dabs of the eyeshadow is enough for me to use on my whole eyelid (remember, blending is key.) Yes, Urban Decay products are on the pricey side but if you want quality eyeshadow, you won’t be sorry you turned to this brand.

2) Inglot:

This brand boasts a huge variety of eyeshadow colors with several different finishes and they are all very decently pigmented. The nice thing about this brand is that they have something called “The Freedom System” whereby you are allowed to select your own palette and fill it up with your own choice of eyeshadows (or lip glosses, face powders, blushers, etc…) The palettes come in different sizes and shapes, with 2 or more eyeshadow slots to fill, and the eyeshadow slots are available in circle or square shapes. The cool thing about these palettes is that they have magnetic covers that are easy to open by sliding them across. Very convenient for taking with you on outings or trips. Inglot is actually quite decently priced in the US or the UK (and probably the cheapest in Poland, where the brand originates from) but in the UAE, you’ll find the palettes being sold at double the prices. So, if you are looking to buy one of the big eyeshadow palettes, I would recommend asking a friend that frequently travels to the US or the UK to buy you one. If you want to try out one of the small eyeshadow palettes, then you could always go to one of the Inglot stores present in the UAE. (You can find Inglot in all the major malls within Dubai.)

3) MAC:

Do I really have to go into detail about this brand’s eyeshadow? I’m sure you’re all aware of it so I will just move on to the next one.

4) Makeup Forever:

Same as above.

5) Illamasqua:

Admittedly, this is a very expensive makeup brand but trust me when I say that its eyeshadows’ quality is way, way, wayyy top-notch. I mean, I can confidently say that Illamasqua’s eyeshadow pigmentation is better than MAC’s and Makeup Forever’s…and that’s saying a lot. (And their blushers….are to die for.) But we’re talking about eyeshadow now…and let me tell you, if you’re a true beauty junkie, just one swipe of an Illamasqua eyeshadow will have you seeing “the light” and hearing heaven’s choir singing down to you. Yeah, they’re that good. They are a heaven-sent for hardcore makeup lovers and makeup artists. Of course, Illamasqua’s pricing is a lot more expensive in Dubai than it is in the US or the UK so don’t say I didn’t warn you! I am only aware of the brand being available in Dubai Mall’s Bloomingdales but it could also be present elsewhere within the UAE. I’ll let you know if I find out.

6) NYX:

For a drugstore brand, NYX has very good eyeshadows! Their pigmentation is pretty decent and they come in a nice variety of colors. I’ve never been sorry for purchasing NYX eyeshadows and my wallet doesn’t hate me for it! Good eyeshadows for good prices.

7) L’Oreal:

Another awesome drugstore brand, L’Oreal has been a dependable go-to brand to me for years. I have been a faithful user of L’Oreal eyeshadows for as long as I can remember and they have never let me down. With good pigmentation and lovely colors, you can’t go wrong with buying one of these babies. Also, they’re decently priced and are gentle on the bank accounts 😉

Telescopic Explosion Mascara by L’Oreal

I have mixed feelings about this mascara because while its wand is formulated in a way that makes it easy for me to reach those stubborn lashes at the corners of my eyes, I don’t feel I have enough control over how I apply the mascara. The wand makes it difficult for me to control how much mascara I apply on to my lashes and I often end up applying too little or too much, sometimes giving my lashes that dreaded clumpy look we all try to avoid. I have been wanting to buy the Telescopic Explosion Mascara by L’Oreal for quite some time but I kept putting the matter off because I wasn’t sure if it would be worth it. Well, in my recent travel to Prague, I found the mascara at a beauty store for 50 % off so I thought…why not? If I don’t like it, I won’t be that sorry I bought it. In all honesty, I wouldn’t buy it again and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone else but everyone’s different and everyone’s eyelashes are different so what doesn’t work for me might work for someone else.

Have any of you tried this mascara? What are your thoughts on it?

L’Oreal Volume Million Lashes Mascara: it’s alright.

For those of you that have thin and light-colored lashes, and possibly not very much of them, this may be a good mascara. I, myself, was not blessed with a great abundance of thick, dark or long lashes – in fact, they’re barely visible without any form of mascara on – and so I’ve come to rely on mascaras that have bristles of a plastic-rubbery texture with a comb-like appearance because they seem to separate my lashes better, while lengthening and volumizing them too, making them appear less sparse and scarce in nature. L’Oreal Volume Million Lashes is one of those mascaras. But, beware, if you have sensitive eyes or eyes that are prone to tearing up/getting irritated the moment something less-than-extremely-soft touches your lash lines, then this mascara may not be your kinda thing.

The bristles, like I previously said, have this plastic-rubbery like feeling to them. They were formulated like this to “separate lashes for a fanned-like effect” (as stated on L’Oreal’s web site) and while I think they do have that effect on my lashes, to a certain extent, they don’t necessarily volumize them in a massive way. BUT, they do give my lashes some volume, which for me is way better than no volume at all and they don’t clump my lashes as much as mascaras with the usual fluffy bristles do. I feel I have more control over the mascara application with Volume Million Lashes.

For those of you that are blessed with a considerable number of thick, dark and/or long lashes, this mascara may not do much for you because, in my opinion, it doesn’t really give *that* much volume – it simply accentuates the appearance of lashes and makes it seem like you have slightly more than you actually do…but when you already have a lot, or when you already have thick and dark ones, you won’t see much difference. This mascara may be used to lengthen the lashes if you apply it mostly at the tips but don’t expect any dramatic results. I like that it comes in black and brown colors, because I use the brown colored one as a daily mascara and the black one for special occasions or night outings.

For those of you that have tried this mascara, what do you think? Did you like it?

Yours truly,

Yasmine.