Sunday, September 22, 2013

My Top Makeup Tips and Nightmare High School Makeup

For this entry I wanted to show you how I used to do my makeup in high school. I couldn't find a good photo, so I recreated the look:
My go to look, circa 2001-2003
This makes me cringe, and it's not just because my eyebrows aren't filled in. On my face is nice thick layer of too-light foundation, one colour of eyeshadow, applied with my finger, black eyeliner top and bottom, mascara and some weird shimmery pink-copper lip gloss. I prettty much always did the same thing. If I had breakouts I didn't use concealer, I just wore MORE foundation. If I wanted to look really done up, I'd do thicker black eyeliner. Point is, I didn't know very much about makeup. Then YouTube came along. I wish it existed when I was a teenager-I always loved a good reason to NOT do my homework. But maybe I also would have learned a thing or two about how to do my makeup right, and I wouldn't have looked like a pasty racoon all the time.

I've been watching beauty videos for years, starting with drag queen tutorials for Halloween makeup looks. I think everyone has an internet "thing" they waste their time on, and YouTube is mine (well, that and, but that's everyone, right?). Over time I've learned a lot about makeup application. But some things really stick out as advice I put to use on a daily basis.

Here's a list of the best makeup tips I've learned, just in case you don't have hundreds over hours to dedicate to watching all the videos I have seen over the years.

1. Do your eyeshadow first. I don't know why this never occured to me in the past. I'd always have to touch up my face makeup because of smudging or fall out from my eyeshadow. If you do your eyeshadow first you can just wipe off any mess and not have to worry about ruining your face makeup.

2. Don't use more foundation than you need. You don't need to paint your whole face. Keep it to the areas that actually have some uneven tones. Don't use it under your eyes if you're going to put concealer there-you don't want to layer products. This is how much foundation I generally use now:

I just dot it on my t-zone and blend it out. Then I use concealer to cover any breakouts I have. It looks way more natural this way, when you can actually see your skin and not just makeup.

3. When you do your undereye concealer, don't just put it directly on the darker part below your eyes.Extend it downwards towards your cheeks, and also across your temple area, like this:
That's pre-blending obviously, but you get the idea. When I do my concealer like this I feel like it just really brightens up that whole area and is much more effective than just trying to cover the circles themselves. It also works to highlight the upper cheekbone area.

4. Instead of putting blush on the apples of your cheeks, put it higher up, on your cheekbones. Here's the video that taught me this, because Wayne Goss is one of my favourite beauty gurus, and he explains it perfectly:

5. Use an eyeshadow primer. I use on every time I wear eyeshadow. Like if I start doing my eyes and realize I've forgotten to put on primer, I'll take it off and start over. It really makes your eyeshadow stay put and not crease all day. I use Urban Decay Primer Potion.

6.  When you do your mascara, do the bottom lashes before the top ones. You won't get little specks of mascara on your top lids if you do it that way.

7. Figure out what your eye shape is, and learn a few techniques to best flatter them. I have pretty small eyes, and the all-around black liner I used to rock wasn't doing me any favours. I've since learned a few ways to apply eyeshadow and liner to make my eyes look bigger. If you have small eyes, hooded lids, if they're close together wide set, there's ways you can wear makeup that will best suit your eyes. Figure it out and then look up some YouTube videos. YouTube knows all.

8. Blend all your makeup. This goes for foundation and concealer obviously, but it's also important for eyeshadow, bronzer and blush. There shouldn't be any harsh lines on your face. I have brushes for my eye and face makeup that are just for blending. It's an important step that makes everything look more natural and professional.

9. Eyebrows are sisters, not twins. I used to get really frustrated when I couldn't get my eyebrows to look the same. But then I realized that my face is SUPER asymmetrical-which made me feel worse about myself in general, but better about not being able to make my eyebrows match.  The same goes with eyeshadow. Don't stress if you can't get both sides to look the exact same. Your eyes are different from each other, and thats why it's so hard to make the makeup look the same on both sides.

10. Most importantly, do what makes you feel good. That's the whole point of makeup-to make you feel more confident. So don't worry too much about following the rules. And don't feel like you HAVE to do something just because it's trendy or everyone else is. If you think you look good, that's what's most important. You look your best when you feel confident. And when you look good.

These are just a few of the things I've learned from spending an obscene amount of time watching people I don't know talk about cosmetics on the internet. I know it's kind of a weird past time. But thinking about how I used to do my makeup makes me happy I've learned so much. There's a lot of things I haven't gotten better at since high school-relationships, setting life goals, taking library books back on time(or ever). But I can do a pretty good smokey eye, and for that I am thankful.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Sephora, Mac and Glam Bag all in one day

So I've been planning a big post where I tell you my top ten overall tips that I have learned about makeup through my long hours of research (watching Youtube). I feel like it would be really useful, and it would be fun for me to figure out what to include. And I am going to do that soon. But I went shopping today and got a bunch of new stuff, and then when I got home I found my Ipsy Glam Bag in the mail. I felt like I had do a post about all that stuff before the excitement wears off-which will be in about 2 hours when I go on the Sephora website and see five more things I "need."

My first stop today was indeed Sephora. But before I get into what I bought, I think we need to talk about this:
Look at the price!!!!
 $94 for a bronzer brush, are you effing kidding me? I have been outraged by this since the Marc Jacobs makeup line debuted a few weeks ago, and I can't keep it to myself any longer. There's tons of ridiculously overpriced shit at Sephora-that's kind of the point. And I love Marc Jacobs. But this just really infuriates me. I'm not sure why. I should probably find more important things to take a stand against. Like $27 nail polish (Yves St. Laurent), or $85 foundation (Dior).

Ok, I've aired my grievances, let's move on.

Here's what I got at Sephora:

Urban Decay All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray- I've been using this lately and I really like it, so I wanted to pick up some more before I run out. This is a spray that you use after you apply all your makeup and it makes everything stay in place and look freshly applied all day. I manage a restaurant, and it can be a very busy, hot environment, so I love anything that keeps my makeup where it's supposed to be. This really does work. I also like it because I have dry skin and don't want to use a lot of powder to set my makeup. This is just a little bottle and it's $15-for some reason I can't bring myself to spend the $35 on the full size, even though it's technically a better deal. But I definitely recommend trying this out, especially if you're a "full face" makeup person like me.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Ash Blonde- I recently lightened my own eyebrows (risky move, I know) to match my also recently lightened hair. I'm just trying to figure out what product is best for filling them in. This brand specializes in brow products so I thought I'd give this pencil a try. I've heard good things.

Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in Jilted- I received a little sample size of one of these lipsticks in my last Glam Bag, and thought it was pretty nice. Since then I have heard numerous YouTubers saying that these are the best lipsticks they've ever used. I'm a bit of a lemming when it comes to makeup, so I had to have at least one. I've just put it on right now and looks and feels beautiful. I could see this giving Mac a run for it's money in the land of high end lipstick.

Daisy by Marc Jacobs Rollerball- see, I have nothing against Marc. This is one of my favourite fragrances, and as I mentioned in a recent post I lost mine somewhere along the way. Instead of actually looking for it, I just bought a new one. Makes sense to me.

Sephora Pro Blending Brush- Another post I want to do soon is a breakdown of all the brushes I use. Blending brushes are key in eyeshadow application, and I felt like I wanted a new one. I like how this brush comes with the plastic case, though I will probably lose that too.
Ok that's everything I got at Sephora. After that I did some clothes shopping, but I didn't find as much stuff as I wanted. At the end of the day I felt like I hadn't spend quite enough money and I was a failure of a shopper. So I went to Mac for some consolation prizes.

I just bought two things there. The first might make you think I definitely have a bit of a problem because it's........

Mac Fix +-.................another setting spray. But this one is completely different from the Urban Decay one. This product apparently has a bunch of different uses. It's supposed to be good if you overpowder your face-you just spray this on and it takes away that cakey look. It can also be used as a refresher during the day, or for mixing dry pigments/eyeshadows to use them wet. This little bottle was only $12 so I feel like it's totally ok that I bought two setting sprays in one day. It's FINE.

219 Pencil Brush- This was more of a "need" product. As much as a tool for making your eyeshadow look pretty can be considered a "need" anyway. This type of brush is for creating precise detail, and I don't have anything like it so I felt 100% justified in spending $30 on it. Maybe that bronzer brush was just created to desensitize us to outrageous brush prices.

So that was all I bought makeup wise today, and I was feeling pretty good about it.  I even learned an important life lesson: Don't be a jackass like me and make a joke about stealing makeup in Shopper's Drug Mart, or they might send security out after you and accuse your friend of shoplifting. True story. Obviously we weren't stealing, we gotta get those Optimum Points! Get it together, Shopper's. (And B, I'm sorry for getting so much enjoyment out of that).

Other than that little misadventure, it was a great day of retail therapy. So it was pure gravy when I came home to find my September Ipsy Glam Bag in the mail. The last few months I've done a whole post on each bag, but I feel like you get the picture. If not, *here's* my first post about it.

This is what came this month:

So there's a mini set of John Frieda shampoo and conditioner, which I'll probably take with me when I go to New York City (!) at the end of the month, an eyeliner, mascara, and single pan Nyx eyeshadow. Decent. I have a few Nyx shadows and they're pretty good quality. The eyeliner is like your standard black kohl pencil. The mascara might be alright, but the name "It's So Big" annoys me. Vague penis references have no place in my makeup routine. That's my lady time, no dicks invited. This month's selection of products is maybe not quite as good as last month, but they're all usable and I'm not disappointed at all. Not that I actually end up using too much of the stuff I get, but the initial excitement is worth the $15 a month. You gotta get your kicks where you can, right?

I usually end my posts with a bunch of snark, but I want to switch gears slightly. I've had a few people say some really nice things to me about this blog. I don't want to get too cheesy, but I really do appreciate anyone reading this. I very much enjoy writing. But I mostly enjoy how the act of writing about the things I buy somehow makes me feel completely justified in spending wayyyy too much money on makeup and shit like that. So thank you for enabling my spending problem. In return, I'll keep telling you about overpriced makeup you should buy. And maybe one day we can all go to Shopper's Anonymous meetings and work a 12 step program together. We can even relapse together, I can't wait.