Makeup Monday: My Beauty Bag Essentials

by lauren atkinson


"If trapped on a deserted island and you can bring only one makeup-related thing, what would it be?" It'd be a tough call: I love all of these items, so can we just say "My Beauty Bag!"?

I have had many favorites over the years, but there are a few products that I keep returning to the makeup counter to repurchase. I love the thrill of trying out new products that others are raving about, but sometimes a favorite can't be beat.  

Because my makeup most days is pretty simple, some of the products I'm sharing are more skincare products or makeup products that I use every single day. These are the items that I use even when it might not look like I have any makeup on at all! 

Also be on the look-out for some of these items as possible stocking-stuffers! The holidays approach!

1.  Celestial Moisturizer , LUSH cosmetics, $24.95 2.  Makeup Finishing Spray , Skindinavia, $29 3.  Blush  in "Deep Throat," NARS, $29 4.  Gimme Brow , Benefit Cosmetics, $22 5.  Herbalism cleanser , LUSH cosmetics, $13.95 6.  BAD gal Lash mascara , Benefit cosmetics, $19

1. Celestial Moisturizer, LUSH cosmetics, $24.95
2. Makeup Finishing Spray, Skindinavia, $29
3. Blush in "Deep Throat," NARS, $29
4. Gimme Brow, Benefit Cosmetics, $22
5. Herbalism cleanser, LUSH cosmetics, $13.95
6. BAD gal Lash mascara, Benefit cosmetics, $19

 

1. Celestial Moisturizer by LUSH Cosmetics This stuff is a favorite on so many levels. The scent of this moisturizer is heavenly! It's got a soft almond scent that is rich but not too overpowering. And with many LUSH products, a little goes a long way! I bought this product as it is advertised as working well with sensitive skin. In the winter, my skin becomes quite dry and gets irritated easily. This stuff is the perfect balance between moisturizing and fresh. I'd recommend this as a stocking-stuffer as it has such a beautiful scent and would work well for most skin-types!
2. Makeup Finishing Spray by Skindinavia I cannot imagine a better product. The formula is light-weight, dries fast and shows no sign of itself sitting on your face, other than holding your makeup to your skin longer! I go through so many bottles of this stuff and absolutely cannot imagine wearing makeup without it.
3. NARS Blush in "Deep Throat" This color is a favorite for many women: It is a soft pinky-peach that gives cheeks a natural glow. I love putting this on with just about every look because it is never over-powering and is the perfect shade of pink!
4. Gimme Brow by Benefit Cosmetics I have the patchiest eyebrows. They grow in dark in some spots, are non-existent in others and have an odd shape. It doesn't matter whether I wax, pluck or shape those bad boys: they always look insane without filling them in. I've battled with finding a product that works perfectly AND is the right shade, which in the past led to a lengthy process of multiple products. Using Gimme Brow, that's all I have to use. The formula is the right weight and color: Perfect for blondes and light brunettes. It dries fast and stays all day! It not only fills in the spots I'm lacking growth, it also shapes the unruly hairs that don't sit straight!
5. Herbalism Cleanser by LUSH I love LUSH cosmetics and at this point, I'm sure that's no secret! This cleanser is perfect for combination skin, in my opinion. It gets into the spots that are oily and fully cleanses them while being sensitive enough for drier parts of the face. It's herb-y and fresh smelling. This product is great because you only need a pinch! 
6. BAD Gal Lash by Benefit Cosmetics This brand is another favorite of mine. Evenings out with crazy long lashes I tend to use their Lash Injection. But BAD Gal Lash is my everyday mascara that gives both length and volume. When choosing a mascara, I like the formula to be drier and the brush to be full of soft bristles. This mascara offers both. 
 
I cannot more highly recommend all of these products. If trapped on a deserted island with only one beauty product, I'd have a tough time. I'd love to hear whether any of these products are favorites for you as well! And do tell me, what's in your beauty bag consistently?


My Favorite Red

by lauren atkinson


Red lipstick has always been an institute in glamour and sex appeal. There is nothing more standout than a pout that is the perfect shade of red.  

I've worn a lot of shades of red in my day, but there is one favorite that will always be around for me. I mourned the loss of my last tube of it last year and am ecstatic that it is available again: MAC Viva Glam I. 

Image compliments of MAC

Image compliments of MAC

Now despite already being in love with MAC lipsticks, I have to say this original shade is top notch. There's definitely a reason I keep coming back to it. It's a sultry deep red with blueish undertones. What is great about this lipstick is that despite it being matte, it is a dynamic color: I've noticed it looks different based on the makeup you are wearing and in what light you are standing.  Sometimes it looks more vibrant and bright red, other times the blue really stands out making it look more deep and burgundy. 

Top photos are in bright light, bottom are in natural lighting. 

Top photos are in bright light, bottom are in natural lighting. 

If you don't already know about the Viva Glam line, there's more than just great shades behind it. For every lipstick purchased from this line, MAC donates the selling price of that tube of lipstick to the MAC AIDS Fund. What happens next is awesome: They use the proceeds to help those with AIDS and AIDS related groups, with a dedication of education on HIV/AIDS for the prevention of the disease. 

So there's not just looking great: there is looking great and feeling great, too.  

 

So tell me, what's the red you can't live without? Any other great beauty finds that make you feel great buying them? 

 


Makeup Monday: Orange Eyeshadow

by lauren atkinson


One awesome look that graced the Fall-Winter 2013 runways is a look that has translated into the season's makeup shelves. Let's discuss orange eyeshadow for a minute. The hue is not one I would normally attempt to play with, but I've seen some really great ways of using it: both bold and subdued, wearable and extreme. Below are some of my favorite ways I've seen the color used:

Photo credit, clockwise from left:  Imaxtree via Harper's Bazaar and Stephen Lovekin/FilmMagic via Seventeen.com

Photo credit, clockwise from left: 
Imaxtree via Harper's Bazaar and
Stephen Lovekin/FilmMagic via Seventeen.com

So where can you get the right shade of orange? Below are some eyeshadows ranging from subdued peaches to bold rusts and fluorescent oranges. Sometimes finding the right shade of orange is just a matter of taking a risk and trying something new!

1. Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in  Pearly Orange  2. NARS Eyeshadow in  Persia  3. NYX Nude Matte Eyeshadow in  Dance the Tides  4. NYX eyeshadow in  Copper  5. NYX eyeshadow in  Hot Orange

1. Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in Pearly Orange
2. NARS Eyeshadow in Persia
3. NYX Nude Matte Eyeshadow in Dance the Tides
4. NYX eyeshadow in Copper
5. NYX eyeshadow in Hot Orange

Here's my look using NYX Copper all-over the lid and a touch of hot orange in the crease. What's your favorite eyeshadow color for fall?

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Makeup Monday: Eye Essentials

by lauren atkinson


My most recent eye look is fairly simple, inexpensive but has really made my eyes pop. As much as I love to fuss over my appearance, sometimes the best looks are the ones that take the least amount of time and are simple enough to let your best features show; I don't want my eye makeup to steal the show! I want my eyes to standout! I try to take my cues from some pretty peepers of the past:

Audrey-hepburn-eyes.jpg
marilyn-monroe.jpg

 For my bottom lash-line, I like a black liner that isn't going to fade throughout the day and really holds! My go-to liner for my bottom lid is my NYX Glide-on liner. It holds well without fading to heat or wind, and really even time. I draw the bottom lash line from the outer corner inward, stopping just where the inner edge of the iris ends. For a more glamorous and nighttime look, I make the outer corner thicker and thin the line out as I draw inwards.

 
Recently, I've been obsessed over finding the right mascara. I like my lashes to feel plush and full, and I really dig on a look that presumes glamour: I want volume and length, but I don't want my lashes to look glued on! The great thing about Too Faced Lash Injection is that its formula is free of parabens. Not only does this make for a "cleaner" mascara, it feels less heavy than other formulas I have tried. I want fullness- but I don't want to feel like my lids are weighed down!

It's important for long-wear eye makeup that a primer is applied. A great primer will even the tones of the eyelid and allow a great base for color and keep cosmetics staying on your eyes where they belong. Urban Decay is a consistent favorite of mine.

For my top lid, I was surprised to find a favorite in the drugstore. L'Oreal Infallible Gel Lacquer Liner holds great color and doesn't smudge. For the price, I really can't complain. It does have a tendency to be a little messy during application-- so patience is key! Be sure to allow the product to dry on the lid!  

1. NYX Slide-On Eyeliner Pencil in "Jet Black" 2. Too Faced Lash Injection 3. Urban Decay Anti-Aging Eyeshadow Primer Potion 4. L'Oreal Infallible Gel Lacquer Eyeliner 24 Hour in "Blackest Black"

1. NYX Slide-On Eyeliner Pencil in "Jet Black"
2. Too Faced Lash Injection
3. Urban Decay Anti-Aging Eyeshadow Primer Potion
4. L'Oreal Infallible Gel Lacquer Eyeliner 24 Hour in "Blackest Black"

Here's the look that has been my everyday. What do you think?

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Makeup Monday: Pop Princess

by lauren atkinson


In my mind, I find few things more glamorous and sultry than a bright lip against a clean, fresh face. Think Dita von Teese, Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, Gwen Stefani-- Can you picture what I'm getting at? It's the pop of colors I'm talking about.

My summer makeup routine has been all about keeping my face and eye makeup simple and clean, while making my lips as vibrant and pouty as I can. I have fallen in love with shades of pinks, reds and surprisingly- corals and oranges. I never thought that I would find shades so bright that could look so chic and elegant. Sometimes-- it's all in the application. Other times, it's just about the risk!  

Here's the swatches of my five must-have pops of color this summer:

 

From top to bottom:  MAC satin VIVA GLAM NICKI, Maybelline COLORsensational in 870 Shocking Coral, Maybelline COLORsensational in 895 On Fire Red, Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in 677 Siren, Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in 040 Rendezvous

From top to bottom: MAC satin VIVA GLAM NICKI, Maybelline COLORsensational in 870 Shocking Coral, Maybelline COLORsensational in 895 On Fire Red, Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in 677 Siren, Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in 040 Rendezvous

Wearing On Fire Red by Maybelline

Wearing On Fire Red by Maybelline

What are some of YOUR favorite beauty looks for summer? Any favorite lipstick shades you'd like to share? Any favorite celebs donning a bright color?