Sunday, May 31, 2009

Bobbi Brown Sheer Color Cheek Tint

Summer is the time to layer on sheer washes of color due to the intense heat and humidity. And cheek stains or tints are the way to go to add a hint of color instead of piling on the powder blush.

Bobbi Brown has come out with the Sheer Color Cheek Tint, a cute little twist-up tint that you can throw in your bag when you need to brighten up a bit. The tint comes in 6 colors - the best colors for darker skin tones are the Sheer Blackberry, a plummy pink, and Sheer Raspberry, a brighter mauve pink.
The Sheer Blackberry, in my opinion, is especially well suited for desi skin tones because it exactly mimics the flush you get from working out. The Sheer Blackberry also looked really pretty on my lips - sort of like a Clinique Black Honey color.
To apply, either dab it on the cheeks directly OR rub the color on fingers and then apply it on the cheeks.
I would have loved to provide a swatch on my cheeks but my camera is behaving badly - you'll just have to try it out on your own!
  • Dual purpose - can use it both on cheeks and lips!
  • Very natural flush
  • Sheer texture makes it difficult to screw up
  • Bright, summer-ready colors


  • Slightly sticky
  • Very small tube for $22 but I believe it will last a while
  • Color doesn't last more than a few hours (but this is typical of stains or tints)

Thursday, May 28, 2009

20% of Smashbox Cosmetics!!

Today and tomorrow (May 28th and 29th), Smashbox Cosmetics is having a 20% sale off of all of its cosmetics (except Curtain Call cosmetics and other cosmetics purchased via other offers). If you've never tried Smashbox and want to, here's your chance to get some discounted makeup!

Even though its not as hyped as other brands, I've found Smashbox Cosmetics to be completely wearable with some very pretty colors. I really liked the Fall 2008 Wicked Lovely Collection, especially the Sweet Lip gloss. Popular products include Photo Finish Foundation Primer and Lip Enhancing Glosses. Products that I have my eye on are the Double-Ended Eye Brightener and Cream Liners.

All you need to do to get the discount is enter the following code, FFSB9, when you purchase products through the Smashbox website.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Steal the Look: Aishwarya Rai at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival

Wow! So you ladies certainly had differing opinions on my last post on Angelina's makeup at Cannes - some of you were "eh" just like me while others couldn't disagree more and loved her makeup!! Well, I love a little debate so keep the comments coming, whatever your view! : )

I'm guessing most of you, though, will like the steely, smoky gray eye look that Aishwarya pulled off during one her days at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival. Reader "a" requested this look and I have to agree, her makeup looks very pretty. I also like the sleek low ponytail, a departure from her usual long waves.

To get the look:

Eyes: Pat on a concealer all around eyes to even out skin tone. Line the upper lashline and lower waterline with a black pencil like MAC Eye Pencil in Ebony (you'll go over the line again later to intensify). Sweep a shimmery mid-tone silver shadow such as MAC Eye Shadow in Silverthorn all over lids up until the crease. Apply a bit of silver shadow along the lower lashline. Line the upper lashline and lower waterline again with black kohl pencil. Go over the upper lashline with black liquid liner such as MAC Liquid Liner in Boot Black. Apply tons of black mascara to make eyes pop.

Cheeks: Sweep a dusty rose blush such as NARS Blush in Mata Hari from apples of the cheeks to the ear. Blend well.

Lips: Apply a silvery pink lip gloss such as MAC Lustreglass in Flusterose to the lips.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I Hate Angelina Jolie's Cannes Makeup!!!

I know, "hate" is such a strong word but I seriously dislike Angelina Jolie's makeup at the Cannes screening of Inglorious Bastards. I realize that there are some people out there who rail at the fact that she usually wears same and simple makeup and a wardrobe of mostly black, but sometimes, you gotta stick with what works.

Its great to see Angie switch it up a bit with a bright pop of red lipstick but there's something that's not working for me here. Its not the lipstick color itself - its the red lipstick paired with a nude - pink dress (the colors of which do not seem to compliment each other), the red lipstick paired with a mostly sallow complexion and the red lipstick paired with a lighter hair color.

In general, I don't think the color of that dress is doing anything to brighten up her complexion. In fact, I think she would have looked amazing with the lip color if she wore an all black or white gown and kept her very dark hair. But there's something about this that just adds 10 years to her look - she appears tired, not vibrant.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

If You're Shiny and You Know It, Blot Your Face!!

I've probably prayed for really, really hot weather about 3,000 times in the last four months of disgusting Chicago weather. And then it happens - the heat and humidity set in, you start sweating, your face becomes an oil slick and you want to destroy every photo taken of you with said oil slick. Even celebrities aren't immune from "shiny face" - check out Padma L.

At least its only Padma's forehead that is shiny - my pet peeve is a shiny nose!! Sometimes just cleansing and toning don't cut it in the summer. So here's how to enjoy the summer without feeling like you have a Crisco mask on:
Blotting Papers

When you're shiny and you know it, whip out some trusty blotting papers to reduce the reflection. There are a ton of brands of blotting papers out now so you don't have to spend a fortune on these disposable products. Simply take a sheet of paper and press to your forehead and nose. Whether or not you get glee from looking at the sheet afterwards to see how much oil you picked up is, well, up to you! Repeat with a clean sheet if necessary. The glamour factor with blotting papers though is probably a zero - its a little weird so keep the action in private areas such as a restroom rather than blotting in public.

1. Clean and Clear Oil Absorbing Sheets - 50 sheets for $5.29

2. Shu Uemura Blotting Paper - 40 sheets for $12

3. Shiseido Pureness Oil Control Blotting Paper - 100 sheets for $17

4. NYX Blotting Paper - 50 sheets for $3

5. Brown Paper Napkins - $0

The NYX blotting sheets are a bargain at $0.06 per sheet but if you prefer to go high end, the Shiseido sheets are $0.17 each and you get a 100 - most likely enough to last you the whole summer.

If you're a true recessionista, you may want to more about option #5. That's right, brown paper napkins double as blotting papers and I know a few people that swear by these, particularly the ones in Starbucks. And since there's a Starbucks on practically every corner of this country now, if you forget your regular blotting papers feel free to stop on by and steal some napkins to pretty yourself up.

Blotting Powder

Now if you're so oily that blotting papers aren't going to do anything but disintegrate once they touch your face, consider purchasing blotting powder. In my opinion, blotting powder isn't ideal because you're probably tacking on makeup on top of makeup which will give you a more matte look. However, if its a necessity, consider some of these options:

1. MAC Pressed Blotting Powder - $21.00

2. IMAN Perfect Response Oil Blotting Powder - $14.99

I've used and loved the MAC Pressed Blotting Powder. Its very light and somewhat translucent so you don't need a perfect skin tone match. And I never found it to clog my pores, only provide a light veil to stop the oilies.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

25% Off Becca Cosmetics!!!

This recession/depression/repression (is it over yet??!!) is doing all of us ladies a favor by dragging down retail clothing prices but high end makeup costs never ever seem to budge, right? Well, today's your lucky day!!

Becca Cosmetics, which is known for its beautiful but natural makeup colors (think along the lines of Bobbi Brown rather than MAC if you've never tried the line), is having a 25% deal on its entire collection through the Daily Candy. Popular items from Becca include its Luminous Skin Color, Beach Tint and Glossy Lip Tint.

All you have to do is enter this code DCBECCA09 at checkout!

Happy shopping!

The Golden Girl is Baaack!

The Spring/Summer 2009 trend of the season is shine! Both silver and gold are now a girl's best friends. So, bring on the dazzle as you brighten your day with a little shimmer or should I say...a lot of shimmer.
To play up the metallic look, the makeup should be modest with a little pizzaz around the eyes. Try not to overdo it and check this look out! The bright eyes with copper, pewter and gold are all blended into the other, yet the lips are a subtle pale pink. Or I think just choosing one of these eye brightening colors that matches a tone of metallic you are wearing - shoes, dress, etc. will really 'Wow!' the crowd.
Eyes: Sweep the eyelid area with a cream shadow in a light, neutral color sparingly to add staying power for your metallics. Try Givenchy's Prismissime Mat & Glow - Sunny shades which has the perfect match for the bronze on the eyelid and gold on the browbone. This shadow compact also lets you blend a matte shadow with the metallic to tone it down if necessary. Then for the platinum punch add a little Heavy Metal shadow by Lorac's Multi-Platinum Palette to the inner corner of the eye extending up to the brow and add a little shimmer to the lower lid for balance. Then apply the Dreamy shadow to the outer corner, again extending to the brow. Finally apply Lancome's Defincils black mascara to upper and lower lashes to finish the eyes. These are all available at (
Lips: Try a pale pink or neutral color for the lips to really make sure the eyes steal the show. A great lipstick with a subtle shine is Sephora brand Rosy Mad which gives a soft pink shimmer to the lips or for a more matte look try Lorac's Babydoll cream lipstick.

Cheeks: The cheeks should have just a light wash of color looking as natural as possible. Laura Mercier's new Second Skin Cheek Color in Rose Petal fits just the bill for the summer heat.

Skin: Impeccable skin that again has a light hand and a matte finish is essential. Try DiorSkin AirFlash Spray Foundation in a shade that matches your skin tone.

Most importantly remember to have fun with metallics and play with some colors like metallic blues, greens and even pinks!

Monday, May 18, 2009

We're Alive!!!

Hi ladies!!

Sorry, for the lack of posts in the last week and a half. We've both been traveling with hectic schedules. New posts to come up this week!!


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

New Makeup Brushes at a Bargain

It has been a couple years since I even thought about my makeup brushes. But recently, I noticed that my blush brush had become a little stiff and no matter what color blush I applied, they all kind of looked the same. Well, after a little research, I know better than to let so much time pass by. Here's what I learned about makeup brush maintenance:

The beauty experts recommend replacing brushes about once every year if possible and cleaning them once a month. Gently wash them with a clarifying shampoo or even baby shampoo, Woolite or dishwasher liquid. Then squeeze out excess water by laying them down flat between a towel and let it air dry. There are also some cleansers specially formulated to clean brushes which sometimes contain disinfectants or alcohol to help dry the bristles faster. These can be purchased online at - the one by MAC seems to be a popular choice.

Once the bristles grow really rough or start falling out, it's time to throw the brush away. Also, sharing make up brushes may lead to infection so make sure they are replaced or cleaned more frequently, especially ones that are used around the eyes or lips. Storing the brushes in a roll-up bag with separate slots instead of throwing them in with other makeup helps them stay clean longer as well.

Now that I had a refresher on how to maintain my brushes, I decided to purchase some new ones. I knew that I didn't want to spend a lot of money. However, there are some fantastic all natural brushes made of sable or goat hair that do last a long time if they can be maintained well. With a coupon from Ulta in hand, I visited their store while on vacation. As I walked around, I noticed they had several lines on sale but the real find was their clearance section. I found a fairly good quality Ulta blush brush on sale for $5 and even an eyebrow brush for $2.50. I love a good sale. And they even have some that are earth friendly made of bamboo and Taklon bristles

One other tip I have is to make sure each brush passes the Triple test: 1) Feel the brush on the back of your hand. If it's soft and light, buy it. If it's stiff, forget about it. 2) Brush your hand again going back and forth with the bristles and see if any strands fall out. If they do, don't buy it as the hairs are probably not glued very well. 3) Finally, pull some on some of the bristles lightly. Again, if the strands fall out, it is loosely glued so don't buy it.

I'm not sure if every Ulta store has a clearance section but hopefully the one near you does.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Steal the Look: Ujjwala Raut's Makeup from Michael Kors Fall '04

Reader Divya asked us to do a makeup breakdown of one of Ujjwala Raut's looks from my Roop ki Rani post on the model. This look is from the Michael Kors Fall 2004 - true to most of Michael Kors' looks, the models had bronzed, rich looking skin.

To get the look:

Eyes: Apply a shimmery seashell pink eyeshadow such as MAC Eye Shadow in French Cuff all over the lids up until the crease. Apply a shimmery white shadow such as MAC Eye Shadow in Phloof! in the inner corners. Lightly line eyes, top and bottom, with a black eye pencil. Finish with black mascara.

Cheeks: Apply a rust colored blush such as MAC Mineralize Blush in Lovejoy or a deep bronzer along the perimeter of the face.

Lips: Apply a bit of highlighter in the upper "v" of the lip - you can use a slight bit of the shimmery white shadow used above on the eyes). Apply a sheer pink lip gloss such as MAC Tricolour Lip Gloss in Just Dessert to the lips.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Wet Bronze Eye Look

This is a wet bronze look I did for a friend's birthday party last night...instead of just applying a bronze shadow dry to the eyelids, I applied the shadow wet for extra shine on the lids.

What I used:
YSL Touch Eclat #4 to prep my eyelids
Lorac Bronze Shadow applied wet all over eyelids
Lorac Spice Shadow applied wet in the outer corner of eyes and along lower lashes
MAC Smolder Eye Pencil along upper lashline and lower waterline
I combined the wet bronze look with pink blush and a slightly glossy light pink lip - when it warms up a little, I think I might go with a more hot pink lip!

Roop ki Rani: Ujjwala Raut

Ujjwala Raut is one of the few Indian models who has graced the runways in both India as well as New York, Paris and Milan, solidifying her status as a truly international model. She won the Femina Look of the Year in the Miss India Pageant in 1996 and was among the Top 15 finalists in the Elite Model Look of the Year contest.

Ujjwala has walked for fashion shows such as Yves Saint Laurent, Roberto Cavalli, Hugo Boss, Cynthia Rowley, Diane von Furstenberg, Dolce & Gabanna, Betsey Johnson, Gucci, Valentino, Oscar de la Renta and Emilio Pucci. She also has walked at the annual Victoria's Secret fashion show.

Ujjwala has been the face of ads of Dolce & Gabbana, Gap, H&M and Roberto Cavalli. In 2004, Ujjwala was the face of Yves Saint Laurent cosmetics, probably the first South Asian model to be the face of a major cosmetics company.

Ujjwala has been on a number of magazine covers such as those of Elle India and Femina India. And I remember when I saw Ujjwala in an editorial in U.S. Marie Claire a few years back - definitely very cool!!

Ujjwala took a short hiatus from the runway to start a family but it seems like she might be back to the runways!! She modeled for Spring 2009 shows like Gottex and at Lakme India Fashion Week for the Autumn/Winter 2009 shows.

Check out this video interview of Ujjwala on modeling from Ripe TV - it has some great clips of her on the runway.

I tried posting a slideshow of Ujjwala's pics on here but it didn't work out so well, so below are more photos:

Friday, May 1, 2009

Pro X, Olay's New Miracle Cream

Post-pregnancy and dealing with toddlerhood - my skin is definitely not doing so well. So, when I recently came across the Olay Pro X line's starter set of day cream, night cream and eye cream, I was pretty excited to try it out. Overall, I thought the products were decent and worked well. However, I'm not sure about the younger looking skin in 28 days. Here's a quick breakdown:

Daytime Age Repair Lotion
The lotion was good during the day - it absorbed quickly into my skin, didn't feel greasy and provided a matte finish which is perfect with/without makeup. However, I wish the SPF was slightly higher (it has SPF 30) - with a honey ethnic complexion, I tan so easily and can even get burnt sometimes.

Night Hydra-Firming Cream
This cream did fulfill what it promised - it moisturized really well. Although, I'm not a big fan of night creams because when I go to sleep, I like my face to feel really clean but somehow this one did not bother me as much. I have only used this for about a week so we'll see if my skin glows in a few more weeks.

Eye Restoration Complex
Finally - an eye cream that seems to work...not! All of you moms of toddlers know what I'm talking about when I say I have bags and black circles (note the black and not dark). Even though now I'm getting a decent night's sleep, all those sleepless nights are catching up with me. I was praying that this eye cream would do the trick. Alas, I'm here to let you know that for me, no such luck :( But on the bright side, the cream is great for under makeup and does absorb well similar to the day cream.

But here is the catch - if you're like me and worried about some of those ingredients, especially when a toddler is trying to kiss Mamma's face twenty times a day, I wouldn't get this. The big one that caught my eye was Triethanolamine (TEA) in the day cream. So onward we go to find the fountain of youth!

Giorgio Armani Sheer Lipstick in 21 Bordeaux

Have you ladies ever tried Giorgio Armani cosmetics? I view this cosmetics line as the "strong, silent type" - it doesn't necessarily make a huge splash in beauty news like MAC with its infinite number of collections but nevertheless delivers some great products.

One of my favorite GA products is the Sheer Lipstick in 21 Bordeaux. In fact, I almost done with this lipstick since purchasing it about a year ago and I can't believe I haven't blogged about it yet. Well, apologies for keeping this beauty gem a secret!!

One of the reasons I love this product is its amazing ability to be worn in a multitude of situations - day or night, at casual or more formal events. In addition, the texture of the Sheer Lipsticks is one of THE best I have tried hands down - hate matte lipsticks? Then try the GA Sheer Lipstick because the more your wear it, the more glossy and shiny the application. Just check out the photo above, which could easily pass as a gloss swatch! In fact, the GA Sheer Lipstick line reminds me a little of Clinique's Almost Lipstick line which is a cross between a lipstick and gloss.

As for the color that I love - 21 Bordeaux - well, I don't really find it that Bordeaux at all due to the sheer application. Its more of a sheer berry on me and as I build it up on my lips, the color gets a bit redder. The color is SO flattering on my skin tone that I wear it to work, the grocery store, out to dinner, out for drinks, to brunch...well, you get the idea! Here's some more of the pros (and very little cons):

  • Awesome, glossy texture - perfect for spring and summer when you want a lighter, more sheer lipstick
  • Packaging is matte black and sleek
  • Contains a bit of shimmer, nothing overboard
  • No need for precise application
  • Super moisturizing
  • 21 Bordeaux is a very flattering color for desi skin tones
  • Its so sheer you can also layer it on cheeks for a multi-tasking product - I do!
  • The color is a teeny bit hard to build because the texture is so glossy but that's not necessarily a completely bad thing!
  • Pricier at $25
Let me know if any of you have tried the other colors in the GA Sheer Lipstick line and what you thought!!