Monday, November 26, 2007

Kareena Kapoor Goes Postal with Eyeliner

Have you ever started out with the intent of doing really subtle, thin lines around your eyes and then all of a sudden, OMG! realizing that you've drawn thick lines that can be seen a mile away? And they're only getting thicker as you try to even them out?  

That's what I think happened to Kareena here, her eyeliner looks terrible. Not only did she put an extra thick helping of black eyeliner on top and navy on the bottom, she made the horrible mistake of.....not smudging the lines! The look is too harsh with with the rest of her makeup, and there's something about using both black and navy liner at the same time that doesn't look right here. I like the lipstick, (it looks like MAC's Hug Me), but she would have looked better if she had softened the eyeliner with a good smudge brush. That's a good tip to keep in mind next time this should happen to you, you can always fix liner that's way overdone by smudging it and blending it into the rest of your eye makeup. And if that doesn't work, dip a cotton swab in eyemakeup remover and start over. Slowly.

picture via

Friday, November 23, 2007

Smooth Skin Just a Shower Away

The official start of winter may be a month away but my skin is already feeling the wintery effects of the cold and wind. Itchiness, flakiness and roughness of the skin are all the wonderful symptoms of blustery conditions so I needed a tough product to get rid of my skin woes.

I had heard that salt scrubs are better at sloughing away dead skin than sugar scrubs so I picked up the H20+ Sea Salt Skin Smoother at a H20+ store. From the first time I used it in the shower, I could immediately see and feel a difference in my skin texture, especially stubborn areas such as my elbows and knees. The scrub comes in a gigantic tub and a little goes a long way so the tub will last a while.

The H20+ salt scrub contains "marine extracts of sea lettuce, sea fennel, algae and wakame" as well as "natural oils, canola and safflower." As there are oils in the scrub, once the scrub is washed off, I could still feel a little oil on my skin. I consider this a plus in the winter months though, as the oils act as an extra barrier of hydration for the skin.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Runway to Reality: Satya Paul Autumn/Winter 2007

Satya Paul warmed up the Autumn/Winter 2007 India Fashion Week with parrot greens, mustard yellows, blood reds and ocean blues mixed into his funky saris. Paul also warmed up the faces of his models with bronze eyes and cheeks and chili pepper red lips.

The look is easy to copy, with a minimalistic but stunning effect.

Lips: Line and and fill in lips with a neutral colored lipliner such as MAC Spice. Over the lipliner, apply a chili pepper red lipstick such as L'oreal Endless Lipcolour in Crimson Joy. Apply a tiny bit of clear gloss such as MAC Lipglass in Clear for a glossy look.

Eyes and Cheeks: Apply the same bronzer, such as Cargo Bronzer in Light, Medium or Dark (depending on your skin tone) to eyes and cheeks to simplify the look for daytime. Alternatively, apply a regular bronzer to cheeks and a sparkly bronze shadow such as MAC Honey Lust eyeshadow to eyes for a bit of shimmer for nighttime. Finish with a bit of dark brown eyeliner and mascara to define the eyes.

Runway to Reality: Krishna Mehta Autumn/Winter 2007

Krishna Mehta's Autumn/Winter 2007 show contrasted rich jewel tone salwar suits with gorgeous monochromatic makeup in earth tones. The rich, earthy colors used on cheeks, eyes and lips are especially suited for desi skin tones and are a sophisticated look for daytime.
To get this monochromatic, earthy look, only a few products are necessary.

For eyes, lips and cheeks, use Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in Milk Chocolate (for light to medium tanned skin) or Chocolate Cherry (for medium to dark tanned skin). Apply with fingers, patting the color onto eyelids, cheeks and lips. Gradually build the color rather than smearing on the product all at once. Decide whether you want to focus the color on lips (as the models above have) or cheeks or eyes and build more color onto that feature.

Define the face by filling in brows, adding mascara and adding a touch of highlighter to the cheekbones for dimension.

photos by

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Runway to Reality: Meera and Muzaffar Ali Autumn/Winter 2007

Similar to the fashion weeks in New York, Paris and Milan, India Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2007 had a number of beautiful makeup looks to steal for real life.

At the Meera and Muzzaffar Ali show, the models looked stunning with black and gold smoky eyes, bronzed cheeks and pink lips. This was my favorite makeup look of the fall-winter India Fashion Week!! To get this look:

Lips: Revlon Super Lustrous Lipgloss in Glossy Rose

Cheeks: Cargo Bronzer in Light, Medium or Dark depending on your skin tone. Apply on the apples of cheeks as the model has here.

Eyes: MAC eyeshadows in Carbon and Amber Lights. Apply Amber Lights all over the lid. Apply Carbon in the crease and the outercorners of the eye and use it to line the eyes with a wet liner brush.

photo via

Monday, November 19, 2007

Steal Malaika's Look

"In cosmetics I use a lot of moisturizers, mascara and kohl pencil. Other make-up is minimal; I believe that one should highlight the attractive aspects of one's face. I have high cheekbones so I highlight these with a blusher, to achieve a sun-kissed, flushed, healthy look. I use cosmetics by Body Shop or MAC because these shades suit the Indian skin." - Malaika Arora

Dewy skin, smoldering eyes, and a to-die-for dress make Malaika Arora one smoking hot mama in this picture. I honestly don't think she needs an ounce of makeup to look beautiful, she is just perfection from head to toe. But let's see how we can steal her glowing look here.

I doubt Malaika's wearing much foundation here. She reportedly drinks water like a fish to keep her skin clear and free of toxins, in addition to using cleansers, oil-free moisturizers, and masks. The one product she does mention by name, however, is Margo soap. Infused with neem oil, it's great for people with oily or acne prone skin. I've never tried Margo soap, but it must be working for her because her skin is flawless.

For those of us who need to fake good skin like this, I recommend covering up blemishes with a good concealor and using a light foundation like Bobbi Brown Oil-Free Even Finish Foundation. Then brush on Victoria's Secret Mosaic Blush in In Lust on the apples of the cheeks, or any blush that gives you a natural, sun-kissed look.

MAC Amber Lights
eyeshadow on the lids, MAC Vanilla eyeshadow to highlight under the brows, and MAC Kohl eyepencil in Smolder to line all around the lashline, including the inner rims. Top it off with lots of MAC Plush Lash Mascara in Plushblack.

The only reason I know how to get the color Malaika is wearing is because I haphazardly mixed it at home while experimenting with what I had in my makeup drawer. You can get lips like this by slicking Clinique Plump and Shine Lipgloss in Braisin over your lips and then lining and filling your lips in with MAC Plum lipliner (if this liner isn't already a staple in your makeup bag, you have to add it, it's a must for women of color. It makes nearly every lipstick or gloss look good on you.)

P.S. There's a little secret I discovered about the Clinique Plump and Shine lipgloss after using it nearly everyday. It exfoliates the dead skin on your lips while you wear it, so at night when you wash your face, your lips are completely smooth. Bonus!

photo source

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Garnier Nutrioniste Nutripure Scrub

I don't know what's been happening to my skin lately, whether it's my age or the hormones, but I've noticed an increase in what appear to be whiteheads or tiny little bumps on my t-zone. Annoying, to say the least, because they're not quite pimples and don't seems to be responding to anything in my usual zit-fighting arsenal of products. The 2% salicylic acid solution I usually use by Neutrogena only seems to be making matters worse by making my skin dry and flaky, without getting rid of the bumps.

In search of a better solution, I went to my local Ulta where an associate with beautifully clear skin walked up to me to help me out. Must have been my lucky day, because if anyone knew the secret to clearer skin, she had to be the one. I explained my problem to her and she said she knew exactly what I was talking about, because she had the same problem, especially on her nose. She said what I needed was good exfoliator, one that would slough off the dead skin without stripping it dry (which is what my toner was doing).

To cut to the chase, I asked her one question. Out of all the products in the entire store, which one does she recommend, and more importantly, which one does she use to keep her skin so clear? Her answer to both questions, was the surprisingly affordable exfoliator from Garnier's new skin care line, the Nutripure Microbead Cream Scrub, only $5.99 for a 5 oz tube.

She said even though the product says to use it once a week, the key to getting rid of the whiteheads is to use it at least 3 or 4 times a week, or even once daily. So I bought it, tried it, and now, it's the best new addition to my skincare routine. After the first use alone, I noticed a significant reduction in the overall oily appearance of my skin. The dead flakiness was gone almost instantly, and the bumps started disappearing after about two weeks. I found with any product, it works best if you use it regularly. If you forget to use it for a week or two, the little whiteheads show up to party again, so I have made this part of my shower routine to make sure I remember to use it consistently. It's easier to use there anyway, because I tend to make a mess rinsing scrubs off over the sink.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Benefit Cupid's Bow Lovely Lip Shaping Set

Shaping and contouring is not only for the cheeks and the Benefit has created the Cupid's Bow Lovely Lip Shaping Set to essentially "contour" the lips to make them look fuller.

The set includes a double-ended pencil: one side a light, shimmery pink highlighter and the other side a darker rose-brown shaper. The highlighter is meant to be applied at the top curve of the lip, or the "cupid's bow" and the center of the bottom lip. The shaper is meant to be applied at the bottom curve of the lip to make the lower lip look fuller. The set also includes a double-ended brush and sponge for blending the highlighter and shaper into the lips.

The concept of contouring your lips to make them look fuller, in my opinion, seems more reasonable than lip plumpers that claim to inflate your lips in a few seconds. I was pleasantly suprised after trying what I thought was just a gimmicky product because of the multiple ways this product can be used. The dark rose-brown shaper is a great color that goes with many different lipsticks or glosses (reminds me a little of MAC Spice) and can be used as a regular lipliner or lipcolor in addition to a shaper. The highlighter can also double as an eyeshadow, a highlighter for the browbones and inner corners of the eye and a highlighter for the cheekbones. All in all, the Lovely Lip Shaping Set is quite a versatile product.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Runway to Reality: Modern Day Cleopatra Makeup

Alexander McQueen's Fall 2007 makeup featured a stunning take on the Cleopatra look, with focus on a colored cat eye. While the models featured very strong eyes that are unwearable for everyday, it is actually quite easy to tweak the look. Modified, it is still a dramatic makeup look that is perfect for upcoming holiday parties.

Apply a jewel colored shadow to the lids, extending from the lashline to just above the crease. The key is to use a sheer wash for bright shadows such as Haunting eye shadow (a bright blue) from the McQueen for MAC collection and a more opaque application for muted shadows such as Swimming eye shadow (a shimmery light green) or Parfait Amour eye shadow (a shimmery purple), also from MAC. Then take a black eyeliner such as MAC Engraved Powerpoint liner and line the top eyelid and the inner rims of the lower eyelid. Use a black liquid eyeliner such as Shu Uemura liquid eyeliner and follow the line already drawn on the top eyelid. At the outer edges of the eyes, extend the liquid liner out in a straight line (versus a curved wing). Finish the eyes with mascara and be sure to fill in sparse brows to balance the eyes.

As the eyes are so strong, keep the rest of the face muted. Since cool, jeweled colored shadows in blues, greens and purples are best for this look, I recommend using a cool, light pink for cheeks and lips (I recommend MAC Little Vi Lustreglass for this look).

photo via

Monday, November 5, 2007

Signature Look vs. Beauty Chameleon

Some of the most famous female celebrities of our era are known and applauded for their ability to change their looks frequently. Pick almost any currently well-known actress or singer and chances are she changes her look quite often. At the moment, has a feature on celebrity chameleons from Lindsay Lohan to Ashlee Simpson to Jennifer Lopez. In fact, it seems that female celebrities of our time really don't stand a chance of remaining in the public eye unless they have switched their hair color a hundred times in the last few years, like the notorious Lindsay Lohan.

Yet it made me wonder, when did the necessity of being a beauty chameleon come into vogue? The most famous beauties of past eras, such as Sophia Loren, Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn, retained a signature look that only had slight variations in terms of clothing, makeup, hair and style, in general. Even Marilyn Monroe, who completed a transformation prior to fame, found her signature look and stuck with it.

While I have attempted to change my own look several times, I have come to the realization that I have my own signature style that has been honed over the years, suits my personality, and while it may be boring, quite honestly, the look just fits me better than all the alternative looks I have tried. I also admire current female celebrities that manage to maintain a gorgeous signature look such as Penelope Cruz and Salma Hayek, while always adding a little twist to their style. And frankly, its a little irritating that the media expects women to constantly change their look as if non-celebrity women have money flowing out of their ears.

What's your opinion? Do you love to change your look around frequently or do you prefer to stick to one style?

November Product Crush

Every month or so, I become obsessed with one product that I just can't stop using...I use it morning, mid-day and night, at work and for going out, and sometimes even when I am doing absolutely nothing at home because I just love putting the product on.
My November product crush is Chanel Summer Plum Glossimer. As the name indicates, this is part of the summer makeup collection. Even though I discovered it a little late, believe me, I am making up for lost time. Summer Plum is a gorgeous plum color with tiny sparkles. It contains just the right amount of pigment and does not appear too dark or too sheer so its perfect for ladies that want to switch up their usual nude lip for a little color this winter. Plus, the color is the perfect dressing to all the beautiful jewel toned clothes out there.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Sanctuary Products Coming to!!

After reading my first post on my love for Sanctuary products, a publicist for the Sanctuary Spa product line contacted me to inform me that some of the products would be available at starting November 15. I don't know about you ladies, but this is wonderful news to me as most of my shopping these days takes place online!!

The products that will initially be sold at are the Sanctuary Spa Essentials (including Salt Scrub, Body Scrub, Foaming Bath Soak, and Creme Souffle) and the the Mande Lular line that I can't seem stop blabbing about. Happy online shopping!!

End Zit: A Miracle Zit Zapper

Ladies!! So sorry for being MIA for the last two weeks! I have gotten slammed at work, which, among other things, means that I haven't been eating well, sleeping much, blogging at all...and it also means that my normally decent skin has started breaking out like crazy!!

Luckily, a former facialist introduced me to an amazing zit zapper a few months ago called End Zit Acne Control Drying Lotion. I just dab a little on my skin whenever I see a breakout and it works beautifully to dry the yucky stuff up. The best part about the lotion is that it comes in six different colors to match your skin tone so that not only can you wear it to bed, you can wear it during the day as well without anyone knowing that you have zit medicine on your face!!

I have used many different types of pimple creams, gels and lotions and literally, this is the only one that zaps zits overnight for me. Different formulations work for different people, but if you have mild breakouts now and then, definitely give this a try!!