How-To, Lips, MAC, Marc Jacobs Beauty

How To: Lips with Dimension

Everyone has their favorite facial feature, and mine are definitely my lips. I like to look at them, I like to call attention to them, I love to play them up. It’s no secret that I buy A LOT of lipstick. And I won’t stop, cuz I can’t stop. ::Puffy Dance::

chapelle dance

Because I am obsessed with my own mouth, when I paint it, I paint it with love. I also paint it with focus because I am always teetering close to the edge of crazy mouth. I gots all my tricks down, and I want to share them with you today. First, let’s take a look at my bare mouth.

bare mouth

Not bad, not bad. A little chewed, but nothing gross. Hydrated, exfoliated, I tweezed my mustache and got my one old lady chin hair. So, this is pretty much best case scenario. What I want to do is bring up the perimeters of my lips, shade where I want depth, and highlight where I want light. Although these steps can be used with pretty much any color, I’m going to demonstrate with a nude lip. Nude lips usually need the extra dimension anyways, so it works out.

Here’s what I’m using:

lip tools

Chapstick Hydration Lock – Prime and lightly moisturize.
MAC Prep + Prime Highlighter in Radiant Rose – Um. To highlight.
Cover Girl Perfect Blend Pencil in Mink – Shading, lining and contouring.
MAC Matte Lipstick in Honey Love – Very nude, cream matte lipstick. I used this color to do a 60s inspired look for my wedding.
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel in Role Play – A creamy rosy nude with a glossy finish.

OK. First, I lightly apply my Chapstick. I don’t want to use too much, because it can make everything tricky. So, I use just enough to make sure my lips are smooth. Then, I line around my lips with the brown liner.

brown liner

Do you see how things are already happening?! It’s so exciting! This liner is a pretty cool brown color, and it’s going to make the edges of my mouth recede, so my lips themselves really stand out in the center. Then, with the spongy thing on the other end of the pencil, I blend the line so it isn’t harsh and obvious.

Next, I use my Prep + Prime pen to highlight the area above my lip. You know, above your cupid’s bow, where that little divot is? There! Like, so:

lip highlight

The highlighter above your lip like that will give your top lip that little bit of upwards flare that really gives you a good, pillowy mouth. Blend that highlight color, and, if you like, set it with a little translucent powder. This is also where I add a little color to that mole next to my lip and set that with powder too. When I remember.

And now we’re ready for lipstick!!!! First, I’ll show you the glossier, Marc Jacobs color.

lips role play

Pretty good, right?! The line around the corner edges of my bottom lip looks darker on me than it might on you because, as you can see in the very first picture, the edges of my lips are naturally darker. This color works great with this whole technique because the shine in the lipstick really makes lips pop. I love it. This lipstick has become one of my go-to colors.

Now, we’ll see how it looks with MAC’s matte Honey Love.

lips honey love

Faaaaaaaabulous!! I added a little bit of pink-gold gloss in the very center of my lips to add some more depth to the flat color. If you want a truly matte, 60s mouth, skip this part. Like I said, I like to play up my lips, so I usually add a little dab.  I used NARS lip gloss in Super Orgasm. I forgot to take a picture of it. My bad! It’s not super crucial for you to see it, so it’s cool.

I think adding shading around the mouth isn’t something most people think to do, but it makes a difference. I didn’t think to do it for a long time! I mean, I didn’t invent any of these tricks, they’re just things I’ve picked up over the years, put all together, and turned into my system for lips. I hope this has been helpful to somebody! Air kisses!

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General, Links

DOOBOP Beauty

It’s a sad fact of the beauty industry that Women of Color are largely underrepresented. Products like BB creams often come in only one or two, light, colors, foundation shades rarely adequately consider darker skin tones. And “nude” colors? Don’t even get me started. The mainstream beauty industry’s limited offerings are the reason why, for as long as I can remember, I’ve watched my beautiful Latina mama struggle to find cosmetics that suit her complexion. She is a master of return policies, because everything from skin care products to eyeshadows have been troublesome. It makes me feel terrible for her! She has fantastic taste and she deserves to have a wide range of product choices!

Enter DOOBOP!!

We are the premier beauty e-tailer dedicated to multiethnic women.
Disrupting the beauty industry one day at a time.

HELL YEAH!! That’s a revolution, baby! It gives me goosebumps. They have a wide range of  carefully curated hair, skin and beauty products for women of varying hair types and skin tones. It’s a really fabulous site! Since I first found out about it, I’ve been suggesting it all around. I want DOOBOP to stick around, I want DOOBOP to have competition, I want there to be a flood of products catering to WoC. Support and exposure are important for this mission, so I want to get the word out! I told my mom, I told friends, I’m telling everyone! You should too! Help your fellow sisters in beauty out. Be cool!

Check out DOOBOP HERE!

And for funsies, here’s a picture of us back when we were very young:

mom and sarah

Even in the 80s, my mom looked FLY. 

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Fave Looks, Impulse Cosmetics, Lips

Impulse Cosmetics Opaque Matte Lipstick in Smoking Gun

blue lipstick

I look incredible. 

This lipstick has been kicking around my desk since before Christmas. I loved it right away, but it took me a minute to figure out what I was doing. This is my third attempt at a look for this color, and I finally did something I can show off! My first attempt got a lot of “corpse” centered feedback, so that was no good. For my second stab at it, I tried really hard to warm up my complexion, and I, um, overdid it. So that was no good either. But this…this makes me happy. I don’t look dead, and I don’t look like Tan Mom. If that’s not a success, I don’t know what is! Also, I did a hairdo. I am terrible at hairdos. Maybe it’s my lack of upper body strength, or my lack of patience, or maybe hairdos are just my beauty blind spot. I don’t know. But, look! I did one! So, yeah, I’d say things are going pretty great. I’m going to kick 2013 right in the butthole!

I bought this lipstick from Impulse Cosmetics on Etsy. Etsy can be hit or miss, I know this, but it worked out for me this time! The lipstick is moisturizing, and extremely pigmented with a mostly matte finish. It goes on fully opaque right away and wears great! I loved it. I really, really did. My one and only complaint was with the packaging. It comes in a lip balm like tube, which is fine, but I really struggle with a flat application area on lipstick. Without an angled tip or a brush, I always end up making my top lip all weird. Then I try to even it out, then I have to even that out, and so it goes on until my lips are a mess.

impulse cosmetics smoking gun

So, that’s not ideal, but it’s totally workable. No big deal! I’ll tell you what IS a BIG DEAL: THE PRICE. These lipsticks are only $6.99! Get it?! A BIG DEAL! My jokes have lots of layers, you guys. Jokes on jokes on jokes.

This particular color, Smoking Gun, isn’t available. But, the colors that are up right now are FABULOUS. There are about six colors on that page that are beckoning to me. “Sarah…..you don’t have a color like me! Buy me! Buy me! BUY ALL OF US!!” And I’m like, “You’re the lipstick!” Then, I add them all to my cart.

Eyes: Urban Decay’s Diamond Dog and Snowflake from bareMinerals, and They’re Real mascara by Benefit
Face: MAC Sheertone Blush in Peaches, Kevyn Aucoin’s The Celestial Powder in Candlelight
Brows: Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Powder Duo in Brunette/Dark Brown
Lips: Smoking Gun by Impulse Cosmetics

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Aging, Badger, Beauty Tools, Blemish Control, Clarisonic, Face, Fresh, GlamGlow, Mario Badescu, Masks, Moisturizer, Ole Henriksen, Pixi, Skincare

My Skin System

makeupfree

Today’s post is going to be all about my current skin care regimen. So, I decided to get right to the point and show you a photo of my makeup free face. There it is. I’m not going to do that thing where I act like I’m super grossed out by my own bare face, because, I’m not. I think I look fine without any makeup on, I just think I look better when I’m wearing mascara.

Right now, I’m pretty happy with my skin. The texture is good, the overall tone is decent. I rarely get blemishes. It’s not perfect, as you can see, I have some dark spots. I also have a little bit of redness around my nose, but that could just be hormonal. I *did* have a giant pimple above my top lip, right in the center last week. It literally popped up out of nowhere. I did my makeup, then I got in the car to leave, and suddenly, there was this huge, pulsing zit. It really gave me a lot of trouble, but it’s gone now. Unfortunately, it left some scarring/discoloration behind. This is a new thing for me. Over the last year or so, my skin has changed a lot, and I think it’s an age thing. My mom has the same problem with scarring and hyperpigmentation when she gets a particularly troublesome blemish. Whatcha gonna do? I just gotta roll with it, and try to find the best products for my changing skin.

skin care products

These are the products I’m currently using. As you can see, I’m not into buying an entire skin care system from the same line. I think all of our skin is so different, it can sometimes be best to mix and match. You do have to be careful when you do this though, because some ingredients can interact weirdly, or cancel each other out. Do your due diligence and research that shit! I always read tons of reviews and information before I buy a new skin care product. It doesn’t always keep me from making a mistake, but I make them less often. When things go wrong, and they sometimes will, I just pull the new product and go back to what I was doing before. I let my skin settle down, and I try again. It’s an ongoing process, but I enjoy it. Also, I really know everyone’s return policies.

Let’s take a look at my ALL-STARS! LEFT TO RIGHT, Y’ALL!

Fresh Soy Face Cleanser – I did a complete review of this a few months ago, and I am still loving it. It’s such a nice, gentle cleanser. It doesn’t dry my skin out, and it keeps it clean. I’ve had this big bottle since June, and although I’m running low, I think I’ll make it through the end of this month. So, it’s not super cheap, but a little goes a long way. I pretty much only use this once a day, in the evenings. Either with, or without my Clarisonic. Hey, speaking of my Clarisonic…..

MY CLARISONIC! – Remember when I waxed rhapsodic about my Clarisonic? I love this freaking thing so freaking much. I love how it removes allllll my makeup, I love how it keeps my skin so soft, I love how it scrubs all my little face crevices. As far as beauty products go, it’s sort of a big ticket item. But, I’ve said it before, and I’ll keep saying it forever, they’re totally worth it. I use mine every 2-3 days, and pretty much every time I need to clean off a full face of makeup.

Pixi Glow Tonic – This baby is kind of new to the crew. I’ve been using it for about a month, and it’s been a great addition. It’s helped to clear up some rough patches, and my pores have stayed clearer. I use it every night, after I wash my face with my cleanser. I don’t wash my face with cleanser in the morning, I rinse with cool water, and then I follow that with this toner.

Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Collagen Booster & Truth Creme – I bought this set as my first shot fired in the war on my aging skin. I haven’t been using it long enough to see a difference in my dark spots, but I know I like the other things it’s doing. I use the serum first, then follow it with the creme. My skin feels soft and velvety, and it looks plump and bright. I use this system most nights, before bed.

Mario Badescu Rose Hips Nourishing Oil –  I’ve written about this here before. At first, I thought this product was kind of strange. But, the longer I use it, the more I love it. Although it’s an oil, it isn’t greasy. It’s got sort of a watery consistency, and it just sucks up moisture. It sucks it all up into your skin. I can’t get enough of how good this makes my skin feel! It has helped immensely with my dry patches, and my flakiness. I use this, in the morning, on its own; and I use it under my moisturizers and treatment oil.

Badger Damascus Rose Antioxidant Face Oil – This is my treatment oil! I use this on the nights I don’t use my Ole Henriksen products, and whenever I feel like my skin needs some deep hydration. It feels nice, the price is right, and it lasts a long time!

Glam Glow Tingling and Exfoliating MaskI’ve covered this mask here before, too. After I ran through my initial sample, I bought the small jar during the Sephora Friends & Family sale. I’ve used it once a week since then, and it has really helped to keep my skin looking clear. I credit this mask for helping to keep my nose pores under control. Those bad boys act up whenever they can. Jerks.

There it is! The system, the systo, the systrain! It’s all trial and error, guys. You just keep looking and trying and until you find the products that work for you. It takes time, but it’s worth it.

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Eyeliner, Eyeshadow, Face, Fave Looks, How-To, Lips, MAC, Naked, OCC, Sephora Collection, Urban Decay

OCC Black Dahlia Look Breakdown

occ lip tar set black dahlia

Witch-ay Woman

A commenter asked about the other makeup I’m wearing in this photo from my review of the OCC Lip Tar All-Star Mini set. I was like, duh, I should probably start including that information along with my photos. I guess I probably never thought about it because I am the worst and I like to keep all my secrets to myself. Like, if you gush about my sunglasses and ask where I got them, I’ll tell you–but, inside, I really don’t want to. I know. That’s terrible. And it’s not even the grossest thing about me. Don’t worry, I get karma back on it. A couple months ago, I asked a lady at the farmers market where she got her sunglasses, and she was all, “I don’t remember.” And I was like, “Girl. Yeah, right.” It’s like Justin Timberlake says, “What goes around, goes around, goes around, comes all the way back around.”

So, the makeup in this picture!

Eyes – It looks like I used three shadows for this look. From the original Urban Decay Naked palette, I used “Virgin” for the brow bone and “Half Baked” for the inner eye corners. The bulk of the shadow, the wine color, is from a very old TIGI Cosmetics palette. I tried to find it, and unfortunately, it doesn’t look like they make it anymore. I swear this is not me just trying not to tell. I bough the palette when I was in beauty school a million years ago, and I probably shouldn’t even be using it anymore. The color was just called, “Wine,” and it’s not very hard to dupe; any wine color that leans more towards a plum will do the trick. I used a white pencil liner from the Sephora collection on my lower waterline, and UD’s black pencil liner on my bottom lash line and upper waterline. The mascara is Benefit’s They’re Real.

Eyebrows – Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Powder Duo in “Brunette/Dark Brown” is my go to brow product. I use a light mixture of the two colors on a thin angled brush.

Blush – “Peaches” Sheertone Blush by MAC.

Lips – OCC Lip Tar in “Black Dahlia”

There you have it! I guess I really don’t mind telling about makeup and beauty stuff. I mean, if I did, I probably wouldn’t have started a beauty blog. So, the good news is, my shadiness only extends to accessories! The bad news is, I will never ever start a sunglasses and bracelets blog.

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Lips, Upcoming, Urban Decay

Urban Decay Spring 2014 Lipgloss

The UD Spring 2014 line started hitting the internet this morning, and it’s pretty tame. I guess that’s ok. I just don’t get all crazy about sheer finishing powders. Don’t get me wrong! I love finding a beautiful new face product, but it’s less impactful in preview photos. Show me an orange lipstick or a hot pink blush, and then you’ve really got me excited!

I was hopeful when I saw there was lipgloss, but they’re all so sheer, and so similar, they all look alike on the lip. They’re pretty, but all the pictures I’ve seen this morning, had me like, “Oh. That’s nice.” I *am* interested in what the formula feels like, and it’s always good to have a nice nude gloss in your bag, so I might eventually grab one. But, I’m not in a big hurry. We’ll see. I didn’t think I was in a big hurry to get the Naked3 palette, but I still scooped it up the second it was available.

Check out Temptalia’s round up HERE.

The Muse’s swatches are HERE.

These aren’t actually available to buy until tomorrow. As much as I wish for it, I don’t get preview PR product. Probably because there are a million beauty blogs and I’ve only been doing this one since last May. And also probably because I only got out of bed long enough this morning to drink a Starbucks, and then I went back to bed until 12:30. NO KIDS, NO JOB, NOWHERE TO BE. ZZZZZZZZZ….

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Beauty Tools, Hair

The Wet Brush Review

the wet brush

ALL HAIL THE WET BRUSH. IT IS ONLY $8.99.

Because I am darling, I am extremely tender-headed. When I was in elementary school, my mom would brush and braid my hair in the morning, and I would cry and whine the whole time. Mexican moms don’t have any tolerance for that shit though, so she would just tell me to suck it up, while she braided faster. Hey. I get it. I’d do the same thing. What are you going to do? Not brush your kid’s hair? She had three girls to get on the bus, and no time for my nonsense. I ran through the braid assembly line just like everyone else.

I’ve never outgrown that delicate scalp. I have to grit my teeth in the salon chair a lot, and, honestly, I hate brushing my hair in my day to day life. Is that wrong? Until a few months ago, it never even occurred to me that I should be brushing my hair every day. It hurts! And sometimes, it makes my hair fluffy. In fact, the one time I do always brush my hair is the one time you’re not really supposed to brush your hair; when it’s wet. I have to though! I don’t want it to dry all tangled. I’m already never brushing it, I can’t start at a complete mess!

We all know brushing your hair while it’s wet is a weird beauty no-no, right? When your hair is wet, it’s crazy prone to breakage. Combine that with the pulling from the brush, and you’ve got flyaways, brotha. You’re supposed to use a wide toothed comb, start from the bottom, and slowly work out all the tangles. It still causes breakage, and it still really hurts!! It’s one of those things that you just do because that’s the way you do it and that’s the way it’ll always be done.

NO MORE! THE WET BRUSH EXISTS! THANK YOU, SCIENCE OR WHOEVER!

Hair that has been colored like mine has generally had to undergo a huge amount of processing, so it really needs to be handled with care. Because of that, and not at all because I just love to buy new hair products, The Wet Brush caught my eye while I was at the beauty supply picking up some things to maintain and style my new cut and color. The packaging on the brush promised it was, “The Best Detangling Brush Ever!” The girl behind the counter backed that up, saying the brushes were really, really popular. Since this particular beauty supply was a “pros only” shop, that meant that hairdressers were buying them. That was good enough for me!

A few days later, when I finally washed my hair, I got the chance to use my new brush. My hair was wet, it felt extremely delicate, and it was tangled. I tentatively pulled the brush through my hair, and it was fantastic. Fantastic! No tugging, no knots, no breaking sound, no tangles! The brush slid through my wet hair, every time, without any resistance. It’s a dream come true. Really. That may sound dramatic, and I don’t care! My tender dome is legendary in my family, it’s the real deal. A brush that makes this pain free AND keeps my hair from suffering breakage *is* a dream come true!!

The brush itself feels good to use; it’s a nice shape and the rubber coating is great with wet hands. The bristles are really where it’s at though. According to their site, the secret is that the bristles have “intelligent flexibility” so they’re “flexible on one stroke, and firm on the next.” If you say so, Wet Brush! I’m in!

The Wet Brush works great on wet or dry hair. I love it so much, I’ve even started brushing my hair almost every day. Just like the Queen of England!

Buy The Wet Brush HERE, or in stores at Target and Sally Beauty.

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