Monday, May 30, 2011

My favorites of May

What I've been loving this month!

- Alaffia products. I have never been so impressed with a line that I go back and want to try more. Especially since I got these at a health food store. I usually dabble across the market. But I have really been loving their conditioner and coconut moisturizer. The creams are very calming and hydrating. I absolutely love.

- Creamy nail polish...blues, pinks, aquas..... anything pastel, and appropriate for Spring.

- MAC 210 brush... I used to use the MAC 266 for gel liner but the 210 is so much more precise, it's great!

- Korres Ginger & Vitamins foundation. Now that I have gotten better at application (it is quite tricky) it's great for all day wear without breaking me out. I really look for that in makeup, especially foundation.
It isn't necessarily high coverage, but I find I'm not as oily throughout the day so it's longer lasting.

- NARS Laguna Bronzer. I finally hit pan on this bronzer, and I can't wait to purchase Casino which will probably be better suited to me than Laguna, but I've been using bronzer a lot this month. Laguna isn't necessarily my favorite, it's just what I've been reaching for.

- Mud masks. I've been working a lot of 13 hour days, and my skin is just broken and worn down. The best thing before bed is a mud mask. It's actually saving my life these days.

That's basically it for favorites....what have you been loving for May?


Thursday, May 26, 2011

NARS Artisan Brushes...

I'm pretty much broke as a joke so all I can do really is window shop online...when I really should be studying. Isn't the internet the ultimate distraction?

One of my favorite youtube gurus The Sublime Agent always raves about his NARS brush collection so I checked the NARS site and this is what I came across... 

Botan Brush

Yachiyo Brush

Ita Brush

These Artisan brushes have perked my interest because they are so unusual. They are all constructed with black goat hair and a Japanese design.  I have seen the Yachiyo brush before and played with it at the NARS counter. It's basically a domed blush brush that tapers off. It's not as densely packed so it is supposed to be good for super pigmented the NARS blushes wow what a concept. You can use it for contouring and highlighting too.

The Botan is a flat top buffer brush. I saw other reviews of it on youtube and it's the biggest brush I ever seen, especially since it is so short! I'd use it for buffing and powder application. I want.

And the Ita brush, as well as the Ita Kabuki apparently are for contouring, highlighting and blending. It seems kindof awkward and useless to me. But it looks pretty.

I've been wanting a tapered blush brush for a while now and I've had my eye on the Yachiyo, but I'll most likely end up getting the MAC 138. I'm a basic bitch...

what are your brush lusts?


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Review: Chanel Vitalumiere Foundation

Update: After a year and a half I finally am rounding up the last few pumps of this foundation. I decided that my old review of this foundation was not thorough enough so here is my updated analysis. 

So here's a little comparison of the coverage of Chanel Vitalumiere. 

(My skin hates me today. It is pretty congested and I have a lot of little breakouts that I obviously didn't leave alone.)

chanel vitalumiere foundation beforechanel vitalumiere foundation review

Me without makeup.... so unhappy.... me with a bit of base is much better. 

You can see that the finish is radiant, glowy ...and almost shiny. Personally I love to mix a concoction of this with a bit of Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer and Clinique Dramatically Different moisturizer (which is not shown in the picture) to tone down the dewiness and add a little extra hydration. 

-  I do love the texture and consistency of this foundation (since I have very dry skin). It applies very smoothly, without streaking or caking into dry patches. It was definitely my go to daily foundation throughout the winter. 
- Does not break me out or irritate my skin. I have eczema patches around my chin and most makeup  aggravate these areas. This foundation to my pleasant surprise does not. Also, despite the fact that Vitalumiere is very dewy and moisturizing I never have a problem with breakouts or congesting my skin.

- Expensive
- Not long lasting. But what do you expect from a foundation that is designed for dry/mature skin. If you are in the hot sun or running around all day you will definitely look oily within a couple hours.
- Coverage is not amazing as it is more light-medium. I wouldn't necessarily consider that a con, but I know some women consider light weight foundations a waste of money. 

Overall I have really enjoyed Chanel Vitalumiere. I am so happy to have found a product that works on dry patches and doesn't irritate my skin or break me out. For me personally, those are major selling points. I think it's a great option if you want light/medium coverage for dry or mature skin definitely not for any women that have oily skin or are looking for high coverage.

Regardless of the pros and cons of the quality of the foundation, at the end of the day you are wearing Chanel so you will feel like a princess. I know I feel like a million bucks when I have my Chanel face on ;) 

Hope my review was helpful. Let me know your thoughts on Vitalumiere. 

xoxo Alma

Friday, May 13, 2011

Hair Diaries: 10 Hair Tips for coarse dry hair

These are just some little pointers I've found really helpful for my hair type. They are pretty basic low maintenance tips that don't take much time out of my day which is nice because who wants to be a slave to their hair :P.....But I already am. 

Ok let's get that coveted Kardashian hair! 
1.  Use a wide tooth comb to gently comb out your hair after you use conditioner in the shower. It properly distributes the conditioner throughout each strand and makes detangling a lot easier. I find my hair is a lot smoother when I remember to do this. 

2. Make shampoo/conditioner the first step when you get in the shower. That way you can let your conditioner sit in your hair for the maximum time , then rinse your hair after you cleanse your body/shave and whatever. 

3.  Try and invest in all natural conditioners and shampoos, or at least higher end products like Kiehls or Aveda. I may be biased with this one because I tend to be a bit of a drugstore snob, but whenever I use drugstore shampoos and especially conditioners my hair definitely has massive buildup and I have to shampoo every day! When I use better quality products my hair stays fresher longer. 

4. Do a scalp mask once a month or so. This tip I get really lazy with but I also feel like it is one of the most important ones. Your scalp is the foundation for your hair so it's only natural that a congested, oily or dry scalp will yield damaged hair growth. I like to treat my scalp to Lush's Hair Doctor. It is amazing. 

5. Don't forget your hair needs weekly deep conditioning treatments too, especially if it is dry like mine! I just wrap my hair in a deep conditioner while I work out to let it sit for a couple hours instead of doing overnight treatments. It just is way more convenient since you will have to shower after a workout anyways. Overnight treatments get messy.

6. If you know you're not going to heat style your hair don't be afraid to put oil on your ends. They'll get that extra hydration overnight and throughout the day. I like coconut and olive oil. Olive oil is slightly stickier so you can be sparing.

7. Always use a heat protectant whenever you heat style your hair. Not sure if these products actually work but I'd rather be safe than sorry. 

8. This may be a no brainer, but don't EVER apply products containing oil then heat style your hair. It basically deep fries those strands. I used to make this mistake because I obviously wasn't thinking, and I wound up with 5 way split ends! It is best not to use any products in your hair besides a heat protectant if you plan on using hot tools. 

9. Try to tie your hair in a loose bun vs a tight ponytail, it is just less strain on your hair, and you'll still maintain a style if you let it down. 

10. Let your hair get greasy! Slick it back with some pomade and show off the face you were born with. The longer you can go without shampooing the better! 

ok these are my tips...... how do you keep your hair in shape?

Friday, May 6, 2011

NOTD- Altar Ego

opi nail polish altar alter ego swatch

Lately I feel like I have been consumed with negative thoughts and moodiness, like I'm always complaining about something. I want to get out of this funk so I decided tomorrow is going to be a cheerful positive day, afterall it's friday!  I want to make sure I have a fresh looking outfit for work, neat hair, my pearl studs and clean, polished nails. I just painted my nails OPI's Altar Ego. Does the name suit this occasion or what?

opi nail polish altar alter ego swatch

I like this color because of its pretty pearlescent finish. It is very sheer and natural looking but also gives that pop of pinky purple color with the reflection of light. It is similar to OPI's Who Needs a Prince but a little more purple. I should wear  sheer polishes more often.

Ok time for bed so I can get a good night's sleep. Maybe that is why I am so cranky all the time, I'm never getting enough beauty rest. Hmmm..


Sunday, May 1, 2011

In and Out: May 1st 2011

+ Coming home to a glass (or bottle) of wine  or a homemade caesar and watching YT on a Saturday night. Pretty much like right now. I know I'm an alcoholic, at least now I'm on a budget. 

+ Warm weather! I've been going for jogs every day this week and I feel amazing!

+ MAC msf natural in medium plus. I have been using this over a primer instead of my usual liquid foundation and I've noticed that I don't get those little breakouts after the end of the day. My face is happy. 

+ My new Holy Grail method of doing my nails. LEGIT. A manicure will last 5 working days with hardly a chip. And I'm a server, so that speaks a lot! I can actually do my nails on days I'm working which is so life changing it's amazing. 

- spending all my savings on makeup and clothes:( I'm broke.
- eczema/ irritated skin. I'm breaking out so badly it is brutal. 
- spending all my spare time watching YT vids... I know I wrote that as an 'in'...let's just say it's a guilty pleasure.