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Saturday, 12 July 2014

The 12 Best Makeup Shades for Work

Dramatic smoky eyes and glossy purple lips don't really have a place at the office (well, unless you work at a nightclub). Here's what does have a place at the office: flushed cheeks, rose-gold eyes, and bright lips. So loosen up, lean in a little, and discover 12 shades to get you through the daily grind.

Yes, we have always been told to find the perfect foundation for your skin tone. The experts say forget this rule between the hours of nine and five, at least. Fluorescent office lighting tends to lend a greenish cast to your complexion, but you can beat it by wearing a foundation shade that's a half shade darker than your skin.

Crazy? Yes. But it works.  Choose a medium-coverage formula, since it evens out skin without looking streaky or cakey.  If you are not happy with this rule, try a bronzing powder instead to warm up your complexion.

It doesn't matter if you're going on a date or to a 9 A.M. status meeting: A washed-out complexion won't do you any favors. That's where peach blush comes in. It keeps you skin from looking sallow and goes great with warm metallic eye shadow, like bronze, copper, rose-gold, or champagne. Use a blush with a matte finish that is subtle, natural-looking, and nearly impossible to overdo.

It's a myth that you can't pull off bright makeup at work. A punchy coral blush gives fair complexions a lively flush any day of the week. We know it looks loud in the pan, but choose a cream formula, tread lightly, and blend like crazy to avoid clown cheeks.

Dark complexions should add this saturated hue to their weekly agenda: The deep poppy-red imparts a gorgeous rosy glow that leaves skin looking fresh and healthy. Try a
Cream Blush in Cranberry; its creamy formula won't quit all day.

Beige eye shadow is a snoozefest. You know what's not? Rose-gold. It's still a neutral, but a pink tinge and hint of shimmer boosts the most conservative office uniforms. Try brushing one of these shades over your lids, and finish with a dark brown pencil and black mascara.

Remember how wide-eyed you were on your first day on the job? Classic and subtle, champagne makes re-creating that look a cinch. Seriously: A dab of the glistening shade makes eyes look bigger and younger (bonus!)

This burnished shade is warm and just a little sexy, but not in an in-your-face, office-inappropriate kind of way. Below: Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes in Fuller Fudge.

Don't toss your staple black liner, but try working a new but still subdued shade, like espresso or slate, into the rotation to lighten things up during the week. These shades give eyes gorgeous definition without looking harsh.  Below: A brown eyeliner which is a dark espresso brown with a rich colour payoff.

A quick way to look polished: Add a jolt of bright red and keep the rest of your makeup simple. Revlon Cherries In The Snow is a go-to creamy blue-based red, which flatters even the fairest complexions. It's vibrant but not shocking, so it won't look radioactive under those unflattering fluorescent bulbs.

Medium complexions can pull off orangey pinks, like M.A.C. Lustre Lipstick in Lustering. Skip the glossy finish, but not only because supershiny lips are too much for coffee with your boss: Reapplication will pretty much become your full-time job.

Vivid orange hues are standouts against dark skin. The key to making it office-appropriate is precise application: To keep color from bleeding, paint it on with a brush, pat on translucent powder, and top with another layer of lipstick. Keep a mirror on standby for checks and touch-ups throughout the day, too. When you're going bright, you have to commit. Below: Mac Morange Lipstick

For days you'd rather not go bold, get out the door fast with a rosy stain. Pat it on with your fingers, pair it with just a little liner and mascara, and you'll quickly look pulled together. Below: L'Oreal Paris Colour Riche Caresse Wet Shine Stain, Berry Persistent

The 10 Anti Ageing Commandments

The onset of fine lines is inevitable, but knowing what to avoid and promote can assist in slowing down the process of ageing.

#1. Thou Shalt use Paraban Free Skincare
Its is a little ironic that parabans, which are widely used in anti-aging products, have been linked to premature ageing. The most common are butylparaben, methylparaben, and propylparaben. You’ll find these listed on up to 75% of personal care and cosmetic products. Paraban free brands include Aveda, Beaucience, L’occitane & Dr Hauschka.

#2. Thou Shalt Avoid Rubbing Tired Eyes
As good as it feels, the skin around our eyes is the most vulnerable to probing paws. Ensure the skin around the eyes is hydrated with a gel based product for this sensitive area.

#3. Thou Shalt Avoid White Sugar
According to dermatologists, eating processed sugar speeds up the ageing process by binding to and eventually weakening the collagen in your skin, thus leading to premature wrinkles.

#4. Thou Shalt Stay Hydrated
Drinking 2 litres of water a day helps deliver vital nutrients to the deeper layers of the skin

Hydrate 300x165 The 10 Anti Ageing Commandments

#5. Thou Shalt Avoid Heavy Foundation
Not only does heavy foundation settle into fine lines making them more obvious, but it enlarges your pours which contributes to the long term drying out and ageing of the skin. I figure it’s counter productive to fork out on paraban free skincare products to then go and top it off with a heavy chemical filled foundation.

On a day-to-day basis, try to a paraban free tinted moisturiser, and limit my MAC foundation to nights out.

#6. Thou Shalt Avoid Heavy Concealer
The eye area is the most delicate area on our face in which face creams can be highly  irritable. To avoid the early onset of crows feet around the eye area, pamper the eyes with specific eye gels / moisturisers before applying a hydrating specific concealer.

#7. Thou Shalt Follow A Retinol Regime
Slow down the clock by introducing the use of retinol, which minimises already existing fine lines. Dermatologists advise that this is a must for ladies in their 30′s, and recommend beginning in your mid-late 20′s. These can be very sensitising so try using it 3 times a week to begin with to gauge how your skin tolerates it.

#8. Though Shalt Say No to Smoking
Smoking destroys collagen and elastin which is needed to maintain firm, youthful skin. Smokers often develop fine lines around the mouth area.

corbis rm photo of woman smoking The 10 Anti Ageing Commandments

#9. Thou Shalt Stay Out of the Sun
As obvious as this sounds as we all know that UV Rays dry out the skin causing it to age prematurely, but now dermatologists recommend using SPF on your face, chest and hands all year round. And don’t forget your sunglasses! Constant squinting of your eyes to avoid sunlight can cause lines around the eyes.

#10. Thou Shalt Wash Your Face Daily
Foundation and dry powders take its toll on our skin so make sure to remove these at night. After washing your face, sleep with an intense  night cream to help hydrate and repair the damage from make-up while you sleep.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

The 10 Commandments Of Blush

Blush can either make or break your look. A peachy glow can be the cherry on top of a fresh-face look, but one heavy handed stroke can take you from chic to clown in no time. The seasons may change but you can bet on these 10 commandments never budging an inch!

#1.   Thou shalt start with a clean canvas
A rosy glow is gorgeous, but when you suffer from rosacea or redness your blush can compete with the natural colour of your cheeks. Buff your favourite foundation onto clean skin to pop on colour where you want it!

#2.  Thou shalt find the right formula
For normal to dry skin: Try a cream blush.  It blends in more easily than other formulations and generally looks a little more natural.  It's almost like an added layer of moisture.

For normal to oily skin: Go with a powder formula which helps soak up oil. It will last longer than a cream blush, which can migrate and fade.

For oily skin: A gel (which can be hard to blend on drier skin) stays put. Try Almay Smart Shade Blush.

Find the Right Formula

#3. Thou shalt choose the proper tools
The wrong tools are usually culprits of uneven blush. For bright powder blush, a good fan brush is a must.  It's best at distributing colour evenly and creating a soft effect.

A fan or a big, fluffy brush works with other powder blushes, as long as it's soft. The bigger brushes can be too thick, giving you too dense an application.. I likes both natural and synthetic bristles.  There are also goat- and pony-hair ones for their softness. For cream or gel blush, the best tool is your fingers.

Choose Your Tools Wisely

#4. Thou shalt prime first
Blush can exacerbate redness and look blotchy on uneven skin. The fix? A great primer.  That way you have a smooth base for your blush to go over.

Create a Base

#5. Thou shalt always powder before blush
Give your blush a fighting chance by setting your liquid foundation with a powder. Not only will your foundation stay in place but the powder will soak up the oil, leaving your blush sitting pretty.
Even if your skin isn't oily, a layer of translucent powder used as a primer for your powder blush will help the pigment go on uniformly and last longer. If you like a dewy look and normally avoid powder, just powder the area where you'll be applying blush.

#6.  Thou shalt learn proper placement
For the most natural look, begin your blush application at the top of the apple of your cheek. The idea is to deposit most of the pigment "where rosiness would first appear naturally, if you were simply flushing,  If you can't see where that spot is, smile to push the apples up. Then, placing the colour on the part that lies directly below your pupil, blend outward, toward the ear.

The proper method to apply blush depends on your face shape:
Round face Apply blush starting from the top of your cheekbone, above the contour colour. Come down at about a 45 degree angle and curve up to the apples of your cheeks.
Thin face Apply blush to the middle of your cheeks in circular motions. Then, blend it to the cheekbones as far as your ears.
Long face Apply blush to the apples of your cheeks and extend to your temples.
Square face Apply blush to your apples and hollows of your cheeks (you can find the hollows by puckering your lips).

#7. Thou shalt layer if necessary 
Some woman complain that their skin "drinks up" the cheek colour by midday. To keep the colour going strong, first apply a little cream blush and let it sink in, then dust a bit of translucent powder over the area and finish with powder blush. The colour should last for hours.

#8. Thou shalt pick a finish
First, think of the lighting: Certain lights reflect more than others—fluorescent especially—so skip anything too sparkly at the office.

Then consider your skin: Blushes with shimmer bring sallow skin back to life, while matte blushes are ideal for oily skin, eliminating shine and staying put longer. Sheer blushes, which tend to be creams or gels, look best on very dark or very pale complexions, since they allow the skin to show through.

Pick a Finish

#9.  Thou shalt know how to tone it down
Tap off the excess powder from your blush before you apply it. When using gel and cream, dab your fingers.  Just in case you went overboard with the blush, don’t panic — there’s a fix. Dab a tiny bit of foundation onto a stippling brush and apply it to cheeks to lightly diffuse the colour. If you have a damp beauty blender on hand tap it over the colour until the clownish effect is gone.
Another tip is to tone it down with your setting powder.  Dab your brush lighlty over the over-done blush until it has been toned down.

#10. Thou shalt remember to blend!
Blush can easily look uneven and overdone. For fool-proof application, designate one brush to apply the color and one clean brush to blend with.  You can pull off even the most intimidating blushes by blending like a pro.
Without blending blush can appear unnatural and sharp.

Additional tip:-
The whole idea of putting colour on your cheeks is to mimic a healthy glow. Though there's room for variation, rose shades are best for pale skin, apricot shades work for medium complexions, and muted brick reds flatter dark skin.

The 10 Commandments Of Cosmetics

Hi  All

If you have been following my last few posts, you will see that I am doing a series on "the 10 Commandments Of ...."  I have already posted about the 10 commandments of applying mascara and  the 10 commandments of lipstick ([perfecting your pout).  This post is the 10 commandments of Cosmetics.

Yes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but there still exists, a set of specific commandments to follow in both makeup application and properly caring for your skin. With so many cosmetic brands to choose from, you should always stick with what works for you. So put your best face forward, and take a look at this list of 10 makeup commandments:

Commandment #1: Thou shall take the time to find the right colour of foundation for your skin.  If your face is a completely different shade than your neck, odds are you didn't choose wisely.  Seek out a professional to help you, because holding up the bottle to your face in the drugstore won’t help.

Commandment #2: Thou shall not use too much bronzer. You don’t want to walk around with obvious makeup, plus adding too much bronzer ages you – tacking on additional years.  Celebrate your youth, use a light hand when applying bronzer.

Commandment #3: Thou shall wear a minimum of SPF 15 in your daily moisturiser. The primary factor of maintaining your skin’s radiance and healthy appearance rely on the daily use of sunscreen.  Sorry folks, but yes, brown skin needs protection, too.

Commandment #4: Thou shall drink plenty of water to maintain your skin’s natural glow and overall well being.  Doctors recommend the daily intake of eight glasses of water per day, and I believe you should push the envelope a bit and make it an even 10.  Get jazzy and add lemon or cucumber! Cheers!

Commandment #5: Thou shall remove all makeup before bed at night!  Racoon, rock-star eyes in the morning are not hot, and I guarantee that you’ll have even more problems once your pores become clogged from debris and oil.  To make this task simpler, try Makeup Removal Wipes that even rid eyes of waterproof mascara! Now you really don’t have an excuse!

Commandment #6: Thou shall exfoliate regularly. Whether you are an oily, dry, or combination skin type, exfoliating is a must if you want your skin to look its best. By riding the skin’s surface of dead cells, you’ll reveal a bright luminous complexion that will have strangers asking you for your best kept skincare secret!  There are various ways to exfoliate, and a Lush store will have one just for your skin type,

Commandment #7: Thou shall blend your eye shadow. An ultimate pet-peeve of mine is seeing a glob of eye shadow on a gorgeous palette that lacks symmetry.  If you love to wear multiple eye shadows, it is essential that you buy an eye shading brush to mix all of your colours together.  For carefree blending, try the Studio Secrets Smokey Eye Blending Brush available at Foschini Stores.

Commandment #8: Thou shall not use your lipstick as a blush.  I have yet to find a lipstick shade that serves as both a great colour for my lips and cheeks.  If they were created equal, don’t you think one of the two wouldn't exist?  There are products called "Multiples" which was designed for multiple uses.  But products labelled "Lipstick" should be used for lips only.

Commandment #9: Thou shall not line your lips with extreme dark shades. The dark purple lip liner with bright pink lip gloss is an ultimate cosmetic sin.  If you’re having a hard time choosing a lip liner, the rule of thumb is to choose a color that is no darker than two shades of your natural lip colour (with the exception of red).  If I can distinctly see your lip liner drawn on your lips, then we have a problem. Try a lip liner in beige – a shade that complements most complexions.

Commandment #10: Thou shall have fun with your makeup! If you’re worried about not applying your makeup correctly, it’s cool.  It takes practice to master the fancy tricks of our favourite makeup artists, and the good news is that we can wash it right off if we make a mistake.  So take a deep breath, and have a good time! You’ll be surprised at the inner artist that exists within!

Do you have your own set of rules about makeup and skincare? I’d love to hear from you!

Thanks for reading


Jordana Fabuliner Liquid Eyeliner

Felt-tip precision. No skipping or dragging. Convenient & easy to use. Dramatic eye definition.

I received the Jordana Fabuliner from a friend.  This is unfortunately only available overseas, It is made in the USA. I had to do a review as it is one of those cult products with a reasonable price tag.  A South African product equal to this would be the L.A Girl fineline liquid liner in black.

Jordana claims:
• Felt-Tip Precision
• No Skipping or Dragging
• Convenient & Easy to Use
• Dramatic Eye Definition

Available in 2 Shades.  I received 01 Black.

Water (Aqua), Acrylates Copolymer, Butylene Glycol, Sodium Lignosulfonate, Sodium Laureth-11 Carboxylate, Glycerin, Dipropylene Glycol, Propylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Polysorbate 80,  Alcohol, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Laureth-12 Sulfate, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Propylparaben, Edta, Black 2 (CI 77266).

Tips & Tricks:
Begin applying a thin line from the inner to the outer corner of your eyelid along your upper or lower lash line. Fro a more dramatic look, make your lines thicker and bolder.

I had fun using this liner.  I don have steady hands, so I had to practice.  I am used to using gel and pencil liner.  I always admire others who wear liquid liner and wished I could master it.  The truth is, the applicator makes a big difference for me.  Using the old style liquid liner does not work for me.  Using a liquid liner pen means that I have more control over the application. 

So I will be a pro in no time!


Saturday, 5 July 2014

The 10 Commandments Of Perfect Lipstick

                          Rules for a Flawless Pout

Lipstick seems pretty standard, doesn't it? Open tube, twist tube, apply lipstick, enjoy your day. Of course there is wearing lipstick and then there’s wearing the heck out of your lipstick! Any one who follows these 10 commandments of Lipstick is sure to have the perfect pout on any special occasion.

Learn how to take the most of your Lipstick:

#1. Thou shalt …line and define
The secret to lipstick perfection is a skin toned lip liner. Accentuate the shape of your pout and never go out of line again with ModelCo Lip Enhancer Illusion Lip Liner – it's the unsung hero of a flawless smile.

#2. Thou shalt find…the perfect red for you 
Red is a must for every lip-drobe. For fair skin choose a berry red shade, true reds flatter medium tones, and orangey-red hues look amazing on a darker complexion.

#3. Thou shalt always…prep your pout 
Exfoliate your lips once or twice a week to give your lipstick a fresh base and avoid annoying flakes and bumps. Mix together sea salt and coconut oil and apply it using an old tooth brush for a gentle DIY scrub.

#4. Thou shalt try…a wine lip 
Rich, plum pouts are the trend to try this winter, but it's a fine line between sexy and scary. Start off wearing shades with berry undertones l, and always give your cheeks some colour to off-set the dark palette.

#5. Thou shalt not…forget to blot
Remember what your grandma told you and don't forget to blot. Apply your first coat, press your lips between a tissue and apply again to ensure your lipstick goes the distance.

#6. Thou shalt not…match blush to pout 
If you're planning on wearing a bright magenta lip which might be in fashion in a certain season, be sure to exercise restraint with your blush. Avoid a hyper-coloured visage and let your pout be the hue hero.

#7. Thou shalt avoid… shimmer overload 
Too much sparkle in your lipstick can appear cheap. Instead, choose a satin finish with hydrating properties to keep your lips feeling smooth and soft, while giving you that chic glossy appeal.

#8. Thou shalt always…start from the middle 
No one wants to look like a clown, so remember to always apply your lipstick from the centre and blend out towards the corners of your lips. Trust me, it's the only way.

#9. Thou shalt try…and go nude 
Instead of au natural, go faux natural with nude lipstick. For fair to light skinned women, nude lipsticks that have a rose or pink tone work best. For women who are medium, tan and olive skinned a nude lip that has a rose undertone works best. For women of colour or those who have darker skin, nude lipsticks that have a bronze or caramel tint work best.

#10. Thou shalt never…stick to one shade 
Start adding to your collection! Work a red lip for power in the boardroom, coral for off-duty chic, or nude when you're wearing nothing but — there's a colour for every occasion.

The 10 Commandments of Applying Mascara

Mascara is like my best friend.  No matter what look I am going for, she has always got my back.
Here are 10 commandments to abide by when it comes to applying mascara.

# 1. Thou shalt curl before you use mascara

Curling after your mascara has dried may cause your lashes to break. You’ll also be staining your lash curler.  Always curl your lashes thoroughly before you apply your mascara. Do it in three parts – at the root, the centre and then at the ends. This will ensure a nice U-shape curl, instead of a sharp and unnatural V-shape curl.

#2: Thou shalt know your wand

How to Reuse Mascara Wands

Knowledge is power when choosing a mascara. Choose a mascara that has a wand that can help support what you lack. If you have sparse – go for a volumising mascara. Have droopy lashes? Use a mascara with a curling wand. 

#3: Thou shalt not pump the wand


Moving the brush in and out pushes air and bacteria back into the tube. No one wants to smear germs onto their eyeballs! Exposing the mascara wand to the air over and over again will also cause the product to dry out faster so it doesn’t last as long as it should.

#4: Thou shalt apply in a zig-zag motion

This is probably basic 101, but apply mascara from root to tip in a zig-zag motion to make sure that formula goes from the wand to your lashes.  Always apply mascara from underneath the lashes. Brushing on top will weigh lashes down and make them look limp.

#5: Thou shalt not condone clumps

Clumps are common. But this doesn’t mean you should leave them alone. Neaten up your lashes by brushing a spooley through the clumps so your lashes look defined.

#6: Thou shalt not forget your lower lashes

Many women forget about their lower lashes, but they’re the finishing touch to your look. Not applying mascara to your lower lashes is like going out with a great dress without shoes. For an everyday look, simply run the brush lightly over the tip of your lower lashes to give them darker and more defined. If you’re afraid of smudges, place a card below your lashes to prevent the formula from getting onto your undereye area.

#7: Thou shalt avoid using waterproof mascara everyday

Waterproof mascaras are usually too tough to remove. Even with a good eye makeup remover, you’ll still have to rub and pick to loosen the formula from your lashes. If you do this consistently, chances are your lashes will break and this will mean you’ll need more mascara to make up for the lack of length. Its a vicious cycle.
Save waterproof mascara for your wedding when you really can’t afford to let tears of joy spoil your look. Otherwise, go for formulas that are water-resistant, instead of waterproof.

#8: Thou shalt try coloured mascaras

Yes, black doesn’t discriminate and looks great with every skin tone and hair colour, even blondes. The whole point of applying mascara is to make your lashes visible. Experimenting with colour can be fun too though. Just don’t end up looking like Ke$ha; unless you’re into that sort of thing.

Several brands offer coloured mascaras and the contrast against your natural eye colour can give an outstanding effect.
If you have green eyes, try purple mascaras. Brown eyes will do well with green and blue mascaras. If you’re afraid of trying colours like orange or yellow, apply it at just the tips of your lashes after a coat of black mascara.

#9: Thou shalt remove all traces of mascara thoroughly

–°leaning woman face with cotton pads. Cosmetic treatment.

You’re definitely going to need a makeup remover that’s designed for eye makeup to get everything all off. Pour the makeup remover out onto a cotton pad and let it rest on your eye for 5-8 seconds. Gently dab every trace of makeup off. 

#10: Thou shalt give your lashes rest days


Consider giving your lashes a holiday sometimes. Take one or two days off per week and simply go without mascara (and makeup). Allow your lashes to breathe and rest from the makeup removal action. They will grow stronger and more healthily

Which of the ten commandments will you be starting with?

AVON - Mega Effects Mascara

Hi all

Today I am doing a review on the Avon Mega Effects Mascara.
A friend of mine is an Avon Sales Agent and graciously sent me this mascara.  I knew I wanted this mascara from the moment I saw it in the catalogue.  It kind of reminded me of the Givenchy Phenomenon Eyes Mascara without the price tag.

Avon Mega Effects Mascara

Picture Courtesy of Google

I must say that after using a traditional mascara wand all my life, this took a bit of getting used to.  I was a little slower and careful when using it.  It does get easier if you use it everyday.  Practice makes perfect.

The shape of the brush is supposed to fit the natural shape of eyelashes.  The formula provides for a smudge-proof and clump-proof application.

I was happy with the results.  And the packaging is so unique and cute.