Spring Cleaning


Last night, I spent some time cleaning out my kit to prepare for some upcoming jobs. Since I had some energy, I started tossing old or rarely used cosmetics from my personal makeup stash and wondered to myself, “When did I even BUY all of this?” When you love makeup and beauty products, it’s easy, (almost too easy thanks to online shopping), to accumulate a vast amount of products. As much as I love my products, I value cleanliness and safety, so some things had to go.

Unless they are working every day as a makeup artist, most people don’t use all of the cosmetics they purchase. With companies like Sephora, Ulta, and MAC offering rewards programs for customers, the availability and easy accessibility to cosmetics makes it harder than ever to stop buying. As a result, people have literally transformed bathrooms, bedrooms, and nooks into home makeup salons.

Spring cleaning for me means paring down products to the ones I value the most and saying goodbye to those I’ve let sit around for too long. Spend money the way you choose, but when it comes to the world of cosmetics, it’s best to slow down, purchase what you need, and replace when necessary. I’ll admit that it’s hard to let go of cosmetics that you love, especially when you start adding up how much money you may have spent, but safe, clean products are better than “losing” some money over items that may cause a breakout or an infection.

Until next time,
Tiffany

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Rewards Programs (Take Advantage)



Happy Saturday! I’ve been productive this morning by taking care of some grooming issues (like banning those evil facial hairs who seem to have a mind of their own), and organizing my treasure trove of miscellaneous beauty items. I stumbled upon one of the many Sephora Beauty Insider gifts that I have stockpiled, including the Caviar Anti-Aging Hair Care products. 

I haven’t used it yet. I have good intentions of using these products, since I love anything that says “Anti-Aging” and the fact that the shampoo and conditioner boast of being free of parabens, sulfates, phthalates, and synthetic color. The trial sized kit also comes with a heat protectant spray (of which I won’t use, as I wear locs, and don’t blow dry), and a leave-in conditioner. 

Since I’ve been a member of Sephora’s rewards program (and several others), I have been hoarding points and turning them in for some cool beauty products. I’ve even become a fan of some companies (Fresh) after trying out the trial sizes that I earned through spending my cash. 

I just love getting something back for patronizing a business. If you’re a beauty budget babe (or dude), and you haven’t utilized rewards programs, what’s stopping you? 

Until next time,

Tiffany 

Purple is the New Pastel


Okay you can officially rock purple, and I mean DEEP purple, for the spring! I am in love with Pagan, a matte, super-duper dark purple, created by Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics. You can order this luscious purple via the website or via Sephora stores. Who says Spring is only for pastels?

Until next time,

Tiffany

OCC Lip Tar in Pagan.

OCC Lip Tar in Pagan.

Sephora + Pantone and My Color IQ


Color IQFor those of you who are not familiar, beauty emporium Sephora partnered with color company expert Pantone, to develop an identification system for matching foundation accurately. I had been TRYING to get myself to physical store (I shop for makeup and beauty products online more than in person) for MONTHS, but finally, I had a day to myself where I could explore my own Color IQ.

As a makeup artist, I am used to mixing foundations for clients and for myself, to achieve the perfect color. I have eczema, and as a result, my face is discolored due to old eczema rashes that healed but caused hyperpigmentation (the skin darkened due to an increase in melanin). It takes me forever to find the right foundation (actually, make that plural, as I have to use more than one), so I was quite curious to see if Color IQ would correctly identify which foundation would work best for my face.

First of all, let me just say that the Sephora employees at the Lincoln Park location here in Chicago are AWESOME! Asia helped me identify my Color IQ by taking 3 pictures of my face with the hand-held camera that exclusively photographed my skin in total darkness for an accurate view of the true color of my skin, without distractions from fluctuating things like natural light, etc. Once she took the pictures, I received an on-screen list of the best foundations for my skin color. There were 16 total, and I also was given variations if I needed to select a foundation that was lighter or darker depending on my preference. The list was then emailed to me, which I thought was extremely helpful, even for a professional. With so many foundations out there, I can sometimes forget what works best for me! Here’s my list below (but please keep reading after the list and pictures):

MAKE UP FOR EVER
HD Invisible Cover Foundation
180 Brown
$ 42.00
NARS
Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 30
Polynesia
$ 42.00
LAURA MERCIER
Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20 – Oil Free
Mocha
$ 43.00
BAREMINERALS
bareMinerals Matte Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15
Warm Deep
$ 27.00
LAURA MERCIER
Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20
Mocha
$ 43.00
SMASHBOX
Liquid Halo HD Foundation SPF 15
10
$ 42.00
MARC JACOBS BEAUTY
Genius Gel Super-Charged Foundation
86 Cocoa Deep
$ 48.00
BECCA
Ultimate Coverage Complexion Crème
Mahogany
$ 44.00
CLINIQUE
Even Better Makeup SPF 15
Pecan
$ 27.00
LAURA MERCIER
Oil Free Suprême Foundation
Rich Sienna
$ 45.00
SEPHORA COLLECTION
Matifying Compact Foundation
D65
$ 9.00
KOH GEN DO
Maifanshi Moisture Foundation
303
$ 62.00
BOBBI BROWN
Long-Wear Even Finish Foundation SPF 15
Chestnut
$ 47.00
MAKE UP FOR EVER
Mat Velvet + Matifying Foundation
No. 85 – Brown
$ 36.00
LANCÔME
Teint Idole Ultra 24H
540 Suede W
$ 45.50
DOLCE & GABBANA
The Foundation Perfect Matte Liquid Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 20
Golden Honey 170
$ 67.00

I decided to try the first foundation on the list, which is Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover Foundation in 180 Brown. I have red undertones in my skin and this foundation really made my skin look natural but I did notice that I had to apply more than one layer to get the best coverage. If you follow my blog, then you must know that I ADORE  Make Up For Ever (MUFE) and use many of their products, but the HD foundation was one that I had not yet tried. I think that it really gave my skin an airbrushed quality that looked fantastic in both natural and artificial light. I’ve seen other bloggers post that the foundation did not work for them (i.e. it was too oily, didn’t give enough coverage, etc.), but I have dry skin, and it worked for me.

I used my Stila One Step Foundation Brush to blend the foundation, and I have to say, I was really pleased with the overall results! Now that I have my list of new “go to’s” for foundation, I am going to start testing out the Color IQ theory more extensively.

Until next time,

Tiffany

 

Obsessed with Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics


Moderncraft LipTar by Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics.

Moderncraft Lip Tar by Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics.

I can’t wait to try out the latest product from one of my favorite vegan cosmetic lines. The Moderncraft Lip Tar Collection, available now at Sephora, allows you to “feel like gloss” but “look like lipstick.”  The line promises some pretty potent staying power, and I trust it lives up to the promise. OCC has some beautiful, wearable colors for the line, and that’s so important to most of us beauty budget babes. Too many times, we buy lip color that we wind up only wearing a few times, then banish the tube into the matrix known as the bathroom drawer.

OCC has taken one of my favorite colors, Black Dahlia and flipped it into “Black Metal Dahlia”, by adding metallic to the sexy, deep burgundy color that I love so much. Other pout-worthy colors include Sebastian, a soft taupe with plum added for something extra, and Mein Herr, a really pretty nude that could flatter many skin tones. This line has something for everyone in terms of texture because there are metallic, stained, and matte colors from which to choose. I don’t know where to start but I’m sure I know where I’ll finish, and that’s with having each of those colors in my kit! Happy shopping!

Maximize Your Beauty Budget


How many times have you gone haywire buying beauty products? Raise your hand if you’ve ever mentally chastised yourself for overspending. I’m guilty, but I’ve learned to maximize my budget by utilizing several rewards programs. There is always an incentive to buy makeup and other beauty products when you know you’re getting something in return.

I love being a member of Sephora Beauty Insider Rewards Program, where I am rewarded for my good shopping behavior! Signing up for this free program allows you to earn points, redeemable for deluxe samples, birthday gifts, and other special incentives. Points add up quickly, as you receive one for every dollar you spend. I don’t feel as guilty about walking out of Sephora with my mile-long receipt, when I know that I’ll be getting some rewards for spending my hard-earned cash.

Check out similar programs from Ulta and Sally Beauty. Make your budget work for you by being a savvy shopper. I love a good deal as much as the next beauty babe, and being a member of several rewards programs helps me to stay grounded in reality. I want the best products for my money. Don’t you?

Sephora Holiday Gifts!


Sephora Color Daze BlockbusterIt’s that time of year again, and you need to head over to your local Sephora or check them out online for some great holiday gifts. Over the years, I have purchased several deluxe collections from Sephora because they make it so easy to stock up on great colors at a great value.

The Color Daze Blockbuster set is an expandable palette of 148 colors for the eyes, cheeks, and lips, plush savvy shoppers get 3 brushes and a mirror. This makeup lover’s dream kit is priced just right, at $49.50 and since it’s a limited edition, you need to get yours now!