Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Tightlining Video with Beau Nelson

Ladies Beau Nelson, Creative Director of Beaute Cosmetics demonstrates tightlining, a eyelining technique I love adore! This technique is so natural and polished and it really does make your eyelashes look thicker. Tightlining can be done with cake or pencil eyeliner and even eyeshadow. Really! Oh, I'll just let Beau explain....

Estee Lauder Limited Edition Sumptuous Color Mascara

I seem to remember using blue mascara in 8th grade. I think it may have contributed to my first kiss, that or the Herbal Essence shampoo. I'm sure my blue eyes stood out with blue mascara! And the Herbal Essence shampoo was just green and smelled like grass, we didn't have different formulas to choose from like the young whippersnappers now days. Ernie said my eyes were pretty and my hair smelled good-- and he actually sniffed it, I thought that was so romantic back then. But I disgress.

Limited-Edition Sumptuous Color Mascara is currently available at Estée Lauder counters nationwide and online at in these shades:
Emerald, Amethyst, Amber, Sapphire and Garnet.

Would you wear colored mascara? Only for a night out or on special occasions? I think the amber and the garnet could be very pretty. Maybe a color opposite your eye color? Amber for blue eyes, amethyst for brown eyes?  Let me know if you would try colored mascara in the comments.

Oh, and Ernie you don't know what you missed!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Can We Talk?

I have refrained from posting about every new MAC Collection on this blog. There are several reasons for this:
  • The brand seems to have a lot of bright trendy offerings that I don't feel are appropriate for women 40 and over
  • I don't enjoy shopping at MAC cosmetic counters because their sales associates are notorious for bad customer service. As a customer I like a relaxed atmosphere where I can peruse at my leisure and not have to listen to blaring Rap music--call me old school.
  • It irritates the heck out of me that they have a Limited Edition collection coming out constantly! I really think MAC has abused this concept, it's a marketing ploy that has reached the point of being ridiculous and many times there are "re-promotes" in the collection which means that the item was in a earlier limited edition collection and is being re-promoted, in other words recycled--grrrrr!!! 
  • When I shop at a cosmetics counter, I look at the makeup the sales associate or makeup artist is wearing, it helps me to determine if I like how the brand looks after it's applied and gives me a good idea of the skills of the person behind the counter.  The SA's/MA's at my MAC counter are as outrageous as they can be--this does not instill confidence in me. They also have a high turnover so no one knows much about the line with the exception of a woman I my friend and I call Ursula. And I don't mean the magnificent Ursula Andress, but Ursula the Sea Witch from the Disney movie Little Mermaid. She looks like this. I'm not even kidding.

This is definitely not to say that there aren't some great products: eye shadows, foundations, lipsticks, the entire line is excellent quality and priced well, but in my opinion (take it for what it's worth) there are plenty of other lines that are high quality, priced well and aren't so annoying. Don't misunderstand me, I have lots of MAC makeup which I love, I just cherry pick the line and don't go as Rachel Zoe would say, Bananas over all the LE collections. There I said it.

So, for at least this time around, I am going to rely on my friend and fellow blogger, Karla at The Next Best Thing To Going Shopping Yourself blog to talk about the collections and provide swatches. 'Nuff said.

MAC Style Black here. I don't know about you but black lipstick is just not appealing to me

MAC Trend F/W  here  This is worth taking a look at, Tone Grey e/s quad and 4 limited edition lip products.

MAC Hi-Def here which is mostly foundations with 4 LE lipsticks and re-promotes (there's that word) & brushes.

MAC DSquared here

I would really like to hear your views on this subject so please let me know in the comments how you feel about MAC. Give me an idea of how you would like me t present the collections in this blog; just an overview, detailed, or compete reviews with pictures, swatches, etc?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Dior Smoky Jazz Palette

Dior is the epitomy of glamorous and the Smoky Jazz Palette is no exception.  It is billed as “The Total Eye Makeup Clutch” and it is exactly that. Just look at the elegant packaging!I wish I had a black patent clutch purse just like it, I’d carry it everyday!

Left to right:

• A black gel eyeliner that literally glides on and lasts all day

• A universal a brow powder—this suits me to perfection and I usually use a taupe or blonde brow pencil

• A gray taupe matte eye shadow perfect for a crease shade

• A shimmery (but not glittery) grey brown taupe

• A silvery taupe eye shadow

• And a pearly white topcoat

The palette includes two double ended brushes. One for eye shadow and the other for eyebrow or eyeliner application. I have used the slanted brush for both. It applies the brow powder perfectly and you can get the thinnest line of eyeliner with it. The brushes included in palettes, even high –end ones are not the best and I normally don’t even use them, but I thought the slanted brush in this palette was worthwhile.

I am amazed and how good my eyes look when I use this palette! Even though these shadows are neutrals, the palette can create a number of looks from a subdued work appropriate eye to sexy smoky for nighttime. I like the fact that there is a silvery taupe as well as the greyed brown taupe in the palette to give some options. The Dior Smoky Jazz Palette retails for $65 which may seem a bit steep but consider that it has 4 eye shadows, eyeliner and brow powder—just add some of my favorite Dior Iconic mascara and you’ve created a sophisticated and classic look. This palette is Limited Edition and available at Dior counters everywhere as well as Sephora. There is a second version called Purple Jazz which is a Nordstrom Exclusive.

I purchased this palette myself

Review: L'oreal Colour Riche Anti-Aging Serum Lipstick

It has been years since I have purchased a drugstore lipstick. I attribute this to the fact that I can be a makeup snob on occasion (surprise!), there are no testers in the drugstore, and the general poor quality and staying power of drugstore lipsticks. I have bought lip glosses, but glosses just don’t seem to last very long so my preference is lipstick. I’m sure it started waaay back when as a child and my mom let me play with the Avon tester lipsticks; those teeny tiny tubes were great, weren’t they?

I cannot tolerate the cloying fragrance of L’oreal lipsticks and just gave up on them for several years. But L’oreal Colour Riche Anti-Aging Serum Lipstick had me at “anti-aging”. They must have changed the formula for this lipstick because the smell is faint and not unpleasant. The serum core has ingredients like ProXalyne, Collagen, Hyaluronic spheres and Glycerin, all designed to smooth out lines and plump up lips. It does a decent job of both.

The formula is smooth, creamy and moisturizing. The pigment is great, one swipe and your done. Make no mistake this is a plumping lipstick so you will feel a tingle. I found the sensation more like a slight warming feeling and not at all uncomfortable. I liked the plumping effect, it was subtle but I could notice it. Lasting power is average for a good quality lipstick, around 4 hours which included sipping tea and a snack. There are 16 gorgeous shades; some have slight shimmer, all have a bit of shine but are not what I would consider glossy. I chose Berry Exciting, a raspberry shade, Blushing Bouquet a soft rose pink that will work for everyone, Spicy Pink, a browned bright pink and Compelling Coral a bright coral with a bit of red. I chose well for my warm skintone but there are some lovely choices for cool skin as well.

Left to right: Berry Exciting, Blushing Bouquet, Spicy Pink, Compelling Coral

Left to right: Berry Exciting, Blushing Bouquet, Spicy Pink, Compelling Coral

I won’t give up my beloved Chanel Rouge Allure’s, however I will not purchase another $30 Chanel lipstick unless it is a truly unique shade, or…. it has anti-aging in the name :)

I've only been using L’oreal Colour Riche Anti-Aging Serum Lipstick for a week but if it really does make my thin lips fuller with continued use, it just might complete me.

Performance: 4/5

Value: 5/5, retails for about $10, got mine on BOGOHO (buy one get one half off) so, $15 for 2

Packaging: 3/5--cheap plastic, but I do appreciate the clear cover so you can see the color

Overall: 4/5--Impressive!

I purchased these products myself

Saturday, September 26, 2009

HyperLuxe Weekend Roundup

This week BeautySweetSpot's own, Jeannine Morris, was at the Emmy's doing a segment for E!. Get the behind the scenes scoop on the red carpet and celebrity swag suites.

Beauty Junkies Unite has 3 easy ways to plumper, fuller lips.

Best Things in Beauty has a Juice Beauty Giveaway Contest underway, along with information on how gals with straight, wavy, or curly hair can can achieve their coveted look with Ouidad hair care.

Brown Suga Fashion and Beauty Blog breaks down Fall's new face

Fab Glance Nashville guides you through picking the perfect watch for the man in your life.

Fabulous Over Forty has a week long review of mascaras with a giveway at the end of the week.

FerOHHHsh takes on Fall style for Non Barbies.

Gouldylox Reviews asks what makes us jones for the latest and greatest in beauty .

Hot Beauty Health answers a common skin question: How do I get rid of acne scars?

The Informed Makeup Maven heads backstage at the Walter show and gets the scoop on the look for fall with Stila.

Krasey Beauty shows you her favorite outfit and makeup look from New York Fashion Week.

Discover 10 ways to look younger at Prime Beauty.

Looking a little pale going into Fall? Read up on Lipgloss Break's favorite Self Tanning Products and my self tanning application tips!

Marina from Makeup4all reminds you all Collections by MAC cosmetics for 2009th Year.

theNotice takes a look at makeup + chronic pain to come up with a easy five-minute face -- for everyone!

Check out why Ilamasqua is illmatic on

Fall in love with Su Ferreira's beauty picks.

For more information about The HLMN or how to become an affiliate please visit our website.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Frugal Friday - LORAC Cream Lipstick

Ladies it has been a H-E-Double Hockey Sticks-ish week! Extra duties at work, spending time with my elderly mother and dealing with kid's problems. So I hope you can forgive me if I cheat a bit on Frugal Friday. I'm cheating because this is a sale, not a regular priced item.

The regular price of these LORAC cream lipsticks is $19, so what a fantastic bargain at $4.99 each! I purchased Ruby, a classic red, a few weeks ago and haven't even had time to try it yet, but I have never been disappointed in LORAC products or I would not recommend them to you. There are some beautiful shades available and they come in cream, sheer and matte formulas. At this price, pick a few or one of each. This is a great opportunity to try a dark lipstick that's so popular this fall for cheeeep! Plus, with any purchase you get a free mini Couture gloss. Hurry while supplies last. A lipstick and a gloss for $4.99?
Forgiven now?

I purchased this lipstick myself

Olay Pro-X Coupon

Okay, okay to make up for cheating on Frugalista Friday, here is $10 off coupon for Olay Pro-X Intensive Wrinkle Protocol products. I had great results with these products! See my review here.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Smashbox Video on Red Lips

If you've been reading this blog recently (and I sure hope you have!) you know I have been talking about red lips being hot this fall. I have posted a few tips to help you acheive the perfect red lip, but a picture, or better yet, a video is worth a thousand words right? This is a great how-to from Smashbox.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

To Shimmah or Not to Shimmah?

Women have been told over and over to give up shimmery eye shadow after 35. Who says? I say rules were meant to be broken—with limitations. Even Bobbi Brown who was so against anything shimmery a few years ago has relented. Hence, her Shimmerbrick blushes and Shimmerwash eye shadows.

The trick as always is subtlety. Yes, give up the glitter. I lived through the age of disco, with my spandex leotard and matching wrap skirt, doing The Hustle and I don't want really want to go there---again. I just can't get behind MAC pigments or the loose glitter shadows many brands carry. Not only will glittery eye shadows date you, but they settle into fine lines and wrinkles. I know I have crow’s feet but I don’t have to advertise it for goodness sake.

Now in my opinion,  a little shimmer never hurt anyone. I’m not talking bling bling, but a slight sheen is attractive and makes your eyes pop. In fact, if people are concentrating on your eyes, they won't notice those crow's feet as much. A few brands I’ve tried and like are Lorac, Benefit Velvet eye shadows and Becca. Chantecaille, and Shu Uemura’s pearl finish are also great choices.

This is what I'm talkin' about!

Another option is a combination of matte and shimmer. I always like a bit of shimmer under the brow bone while a matte shadow on the lid looks polished and work appropriate.

Make sure you are using a good eye shadow base, it will smooth out any crepeiness (is that a word?), help your eye shadow adhere and last all day without creasing. A good eye cream morning and night is essential for those of us over 40 to keep eyes hydrated.

Bright colors are trendy and fun, but keep the colors to a minimum if you are worried about defining lines and wrinkles. In the words of Helena Rubenstein: Whether you are sixteen or over sixty, remember, understatement is the rule of a fine makeup artist. And after all, you are your own makeup artist!

Saks Megawatt Beauty Event!

Saks Beauty Event! With a $75 beauty purchase, get a free Stephanie Johnson bag filled with these samples:

  • Fekkai Advanced Brilliant Shampoo and Glossing packettes

  • Guerlain Idylle Fragrance sample

  • Molton Brown Warming Eucalyptus Bath and Shower Gel deluxe sample

  • Natori Fragrance sample

  • Clinique Double Ended Lip Gloss

  • Lancome Secret de Vie Night Cream

  • Sample of a Scent by Issey Miyake

Samples may vary, color of the bag is chosen for you. Use code MEGAWATT
Online: 9/21-9/27 In stores: 9/24-9/27

For you big spenders, get a $100 gift card with a $450 purchase, a $250 gift card with a $1000 purchase. Click here to see all Gifts with Purchase.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Chanel Debuts NOIR OBSCUR Mascaras

Black is elevated to a new level of intensity with the introduction of NOIR OBSCUR, an extreme black shade of the best-selling CHANEL mascaras. Lashes are lush with deep, luxurious colour for the most intensely dramatic effect.

Mascara Multi-Dimensionnel

Now, in a single stroke, CHANEL sets a new standard in mascara with a formula that does it all. A sophisticated formula and unique brush design combine to lengthen, plump and curl, delivering lush, long-wearing colour so precisely that each lash, even the finest, is perfectly defined and separated. Now in new   Noirs Obscurs Extreme Black. $30


Intense Volume and Curl Mascara

INTENSE VOLUME & SENSATIONAL CURL MASCARA A dream mascara is one that is VOLUMIZING, CURLING and LASTING. EXCEPTIONNEL DE CHANEL achieves these three feats in perfect harmony. Its exceptional brush provides lash-by-lash application and creates an intense volume effect for precise makeup from roots to tips. Now in new Noirs Obscurs Extreme Black. $30

10 Ways to Look Younger

1. Primers are your new best friends. A good face primer will fill in wrinkles, fine lines, and pores. Read my article on primers here.

2.  Lipstick shades can age you. Makeup artist Bobbi Brown suggests only going one or two shades darker than your natural lip color. Avoid matte lipsticks as they tend to settle into your lip lines. Instead, try creamier lipsticks or glosses. Glosses are especially youthful and can make your lips appear fuller.

3.  Stick to cream blushes.  Older skin usually means dry skin so creamy blushes won't settle into your fine lines and wrinkles like powders might on dry skin. Creamier products tend to 'plump' up your skin. Most cosmetics brands carry cream blushes, Bobbi Brown has an especially good selection called Pot Rouges.

4.  Eyeliner helps to define the eyes and make them 'pop.' Lining the eyes can make them appear larger. Smudging your eyeliner into the upper lash line helps to make your lashes look fuller. A thin line on the lower lash line helps to define. Don't forget to curl your lashes, it will make them look longer.

5.  Don't overpluck.  Once you hit your 30's, you'll want to be careful not to overpluck your eyebrows since brows are less apt to grow back if you excessively pluck. Brow powder applied with a stiff slant brush looks more natural than pencil. There's nothing worse than drawn on brows.

6.  Whiten your teeth. Over time, teeth may yellow from coffee, tea or red wine stains. I use Crest Whitestrips Advanced. This is a miracle product, it really does whiten and the strips stay put, you can even drink with them and it's much less expensive than a treatment at the dentist.

7.  Stand up straight. Think about all the sexy women you know, they stand up straight and confidently. Not only will this make you look ten pounds thinner in seconds, it will make you look five years younger as well.

8.  Get a good night's sleep.  Few things age you overnight more than a poor night's sleep. Your eyes are puffy, your skin sallow and dull and your face sags.

9. Use bronzer to contour your face. A quick swipe with a big fluffy brush on the jawline, a stripe down the center of your neck and a stripe under each cheekbone will take 10 years off. Make sure to blend well with a cosmetic sponge.
10. Brighten your eyes.  A little pink highlighter under the eye and on the inside corner will make you look rested and bright eyed even if you're not. Benefit's Eye Bright comes in a creamy pencil and does a great job.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Say Goodbye to Prescriptives

The Estée Lauder Companies announced yesterday, September 17th that they are closing distribution of the Prescriptives line in January of next year. They issued this statement:

"We believe that the difficult decision relating to Prescriptives will allow us to redirect our resources to key strategic imperatives where we see the highest growth potential," said Fabrizio Freda, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Estée Lauder Companies. To read more click here.

Prescriptives will continue to sell online at until inventory is depleted.

For Prescriptives consumer support, toll free numbers have been set up in North America (1.877.819.2968, English, Spanish and French speaking), the United Kingdom (0800 088 4168) and the Republic of Ireland (1800

HyperLuxe Weekend Roundup

BeautyLuxe has compiled the ultimate Fall Beauty Guide.

Check out exclusive peeks backstage during fashion week and the man of the week at Beauty Sweet Spot.

Best Things in Beauty has a fabulous giveaway contest going; you could win a Giorgio Armani Beauty Crema Nera Regenerating Cream ($230).

Claire's Beauty is really loving the new L'Oreal Telescopic Explosion Mascara!

DenimDebutante learns more about ECBC, a shopping site for women, by women (with a giveaway bonus!)

Fab Finds Under $50 has selected 20 items for $465 creating over 40 outfits for the plus size gal!

Fab Glance Nashville takes a look at the new owl-inspired jewelry trend.

Fabulous Over Forty discovers the wonderful Spa Bath products of Lisa Hoffman Beauty.

Gouldylox Reviews shares what to do when haircuts go wrong.

Go backstage with Francois Nars and Marc Jacobs at the Marc Jacob's Fashion Week Spring 2010 runway show at The Glamour Whore.

The Informed Makeup Maven previews Victoria's Secrets Holiday Collections.

Krasey Beauty goes backstage with Mehron at Vassilios Kostetsos.

Marina from Makeup4all tells you how to create bright coral lips that you could see at NYFW.

Check out MAC Bible Secrets and My Views on Color Theory at The Makeup Snob.

theNotice has finally found the perfect blue-red lip colour -- honestly!

Temple of Glam is serving up NY Fashion Week Coverage + "True Blood" Inspired Beauty.

For more information about The HLMN or instructions on becoming an affiliate please visit our website.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Frugal Friday--Gillette Venus Embrace Razor

The Gillette Venus Embrace Razor gets super close with it's 5 blades and no nicks or cuts! I know, hard to believe isn't it? I have to admit I'm shaving impaired--inevitably I come out of the shower, bleeding profusely with almost an entire roll of toilet paper stuck to my legs. I have battle scars on my knees, ankles and underarms to prove it. This razor not only provides a really close shave, but the pivoting head does NOT nick or cut--it glides over knees, ankles and other hard to reach places, and it's cheap and available at the drug and/or grocery store. Thank you Gillette for saving my life! After all, I have lost a lot of blood over the years ya’ know. In fact had it not been for the Gillette Venus Embrace this morning I might have been too weak to write this post. So there.

Share the Love, I'm Loving....

CH perfume by Carolina Hererra. CH is a Nordstrom Exclusive. I splurged this summer at the Anniversary Sale and bought the eau de toilette and lotion set. I've waited until now to wear it because it strikes me as a fall rather than summer scent. I tend to wear light fruity and floral scents for summer and go a little heavier in the fall. I'm not very good at describing scents so I'll let Nordstrom do that for me: It is sensual and complex, and at the same time fresh and optimistic. A fresh, tasty Oriental fragrance.

I don't detect much if any Oriental notes, but it is sophisticated and complicated; the top notes fruity, middle notes hinting at vanilla and bottom notes a bit darker and yes, sensual. The scent does not fade, it lingers all day but somehow does not come across too strong.  it came packaged in a lovely red hat box with a red ribbon and those little charms just like the bottle. I always get compliments when I wear it, that's good enough for me!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Prevention Magazine 2009 Defy Your Age Beauty Awards

Prevention magazine tested 35 anti-aging products to see if they live up to their claims. First, each product was used by five women over age 40 for up to 8 weeks, and the testers shared their opinion about the effectiveness of each product. A top dermatologist then analyzed their skin, and the facial products were evaluated with state-of-the-art equipment like the Visia Complexion Analysis machine, which takes and compares before-and-after photos to detect improvement. The results: 7 facial products that live up to their claims to reduce fine lines, brown spots, dark circles, and more. And each winner costs less than $50!

Here are the winners!
Olay ProX Age Repair Lotion SPF 30--See my review here

RoC Multi-Correxion Night Treatment

Lancôme L'Absolu Rouge La Base Revitalizing Lip Treatment SPF 10

Estée Lauder Idealist Dual-Action Refinishing Treatment

Avon Clearskin Professional Acne Treatment System

Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Shield Hand Cream SPF 30

Skin Effects by Dr. Jeffrey Dover Cell 2 Cell Anti-Aging Eye Treatment

Enter Preventions's Beauty Awards Sweepstakes to win all 7 products! here

Contest ends October 1st. Good Luck!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Zoya's Fall 2009 Nail Collections - Truth & Dare

Zoya Nail Polish is the brainchild of Zoya Reyzis who, as a pregnant aesthetician and salon owner in 1984, realized the need for a healthier and more durable solution. Today, Zoya Nail Polish is available at the finest salons and spa’s worldwide and frequently receives top ratings in fashion, health, and pregnancy magazines world wide. Zoya Nail Polishes (Lacquers) are free of toxic Toluene, Formaldehyde and DBP and are among the longest wearing natural nail polishes available.

Zoya has two new collections for Fall 2009, Truth and Dare. The Truth Collection consists of the following shades:

Penny - copper gold metallic

Kalmia - rose copper metallic

Salma - scarlet red metallic

Isla - venetian red metallic

Anaka - fuchsia metallic glimmer

Drew - mauve rose metallic

I love them all!

The Dare Collection is richer and darker and much more in step with this year's fall fashions, especially Demi and Pinta. It's also kind of vampy don't you think? My favorites are Vanessa, you can beat a great red nail polish with a stick and this year I'm going out of my comfort zone and am going to try Iziba, the deep blue.

Vanessa - blue red cream

Ciara - burgundy plum cream

Demi - purple mauve cream

Pinta - inky violet cream

Envy - gleaming Jade green

Ibiza - gleaming Sapphire blue

Don't you love how the polishes are named after famous actresses? So cute!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Style Snob, MAC's "Taupe" Banana

Taupe is a universally flattering eye shadow shade. It always looks classic and polished, never garish and works with all skintones. It is so popular, that there is a sub-group of makeup junkies devoted to taupe eye shadow. My fellow blogger, Pink Sith is such a junkie. Read her article on the virtues of MAC's Style Snob here. And hurry because it's Limited Edition, like that's a surprise!  They come out with a new LE collection every 3 weeks I swear-- but I digress. You have to buy this eyeshadow!

Photo courtesy of Pink Sith
I purchased this product myself

Monday, September 14, 2009

Smashbox Reign Fall Collection 2009

"Decadent mirrored compacts with 6 baked shadows in both matte and shimmer for higher pigmentation and longer wear. Wear the shimmery shades wet for a metallic, smoky look or dry for a gorgeous wash of luminous color. Use the matte shades as a base, or in the outer corners and crease to intensify a smoky eye." 

I love the idea of matte and shimmery coordinated shades, I think this will make for a very polished eye.  $42.00

The collection consists of two eyeshadow palettes: Majesty is matte and shimmery champagne, cabernet, & black. Monarch looks fairly warm with a matte and shimmery gold, copper and dark brown. A double ended lip liner/lip color in shades current and amaretto, Reign fusion blush, a matte and shimmer blush in a peachy nude, a very pretty lip gloss in Crowned, a peachy pink and Lash DNA mascara.

Are You Primed and Ready?

If the smoky eye is the Rock Star of the makeup world, then primers have to be the Workhorse. I can think of nothing else that makes such a dramatic difference. There are face primers, eye shadow primers, lip primers and mascara primers. I use them all and as I've gotten older, they are no longer optional in my makeup arsenal.

Just as you would prime a canvas for a beautiful finish on a painting, a face primer creates a smooth canvas for your makeup. There are primers for a variety of imperfections; redness, large pores, wrinkles, oily skin, dry skin and even brightening primers. All face primers will make your makeup last longer and not disappear during the day. Smashbox has an award winnng lineup of fantatstic primers. The original Smashbox Photo Finish Primer has a cult following and with good reason, it’s feels silky smooth and is loaded with vitamins A &  E. Smashbox also makes Photo Finish Light for those with oily skin, a trio of Color Correcting Primers, a Bronzing Primer and a Luminizing primer. For those of you with dry skin, Laura Mercier also has a wonderful selection of primers, her Hydrating primer is a good choice for dry skin. There is a face primer available for every skin type and skin issue. Urban Decay has just recently introduced several new primers including: Pore Perfection Complexion Primer Potion and Brightening Complexion Primer Potion; this is also good for dry skin as it has hyaluronic acid to hydrate.

Eye shadow primer keeps your eye shadow from creasing, makes it last all day and intensifies the pigment. My favorite is Urban Decay Primer Potion, I have raved so much about this product and given so many samples to my friends, I should get a commission from Urban Decay. That being said, I do like Too Faced Shadow Insurance also.

Lip primers keep lips moisturized and fill in lines. Mary Kay's Timewise Age Fighting Lip Primer is a good choice for mature women. Urban Decay's new Lip Primer Potion is already getting rave reviews.

Mascara primers add length and volume to lashes and can make any mascara perform better. The newest mascara primers have conditioners in them to keep lashes soft and silky. I use Lancôme Cils Booster XL, but I’m dying to try Lancôme Vibrating Powerbooster. I'd also like to try Urban Decay's new Eyelash Primer Potion, it is parben free and is suppose to fortify, condition and lengthen lashes.

I hope you will give some of these primers a try and create your own beautiful primed canvas. I know you won't be disappointed with the results.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Chanel Debut: Paris-New York

Created by the CHANEL Makeup Studio in Paris especially for the United States, this essential all-in-one makeup wardrobe now features three new must-haves: two cream concealers and one cream blush. The exclusive colour collection, named ‘Paris-New York,’ also includes two shades of lipgloss, one cream lip colour, three powder eyeshadows, a sponge-tipped applicator and a soft-bristled lip brush.

CHANEL Paris-New York multi-use makeup alette is available exclusively online at

I have a love addiction to palettes. They are such a no-brainer; everything in one place all coordinated for you. That's why this Chanel palette will go on my wish list. It not only has eye shadows and lip colors but blush and concealer as well, truly one stop makeup!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Frugal Friday--Not By The Hair of My Chinny Chin Chin!

Remember when Rosie O’Donnell had her talk show? I will never forget her  showing a stray chin hair that she let grow so looong, she put a bead at the end of it! Gross! And we didn’t know she was gay?? Like most women our age, I have the occasional regular stray hairs on my chin. Since I went on hormone replacement therapy, I’ve noticed a few longer (gasp!) moustache hairs too. Bummer. I have friends who actually shave (not recommended), wax, pluck, and have had even splurged for electrolysis. Well, I’ve discovered a much better solution than all that fuss. Nair Precision Face & Upper Lip Hair Remover Kit. The kit comes with a tube of precision hair remover with a slanted tip and a tube of rebalancing moisturizer. It's as simple as 2 steps and takes only 5 minutes.

Step #1

Gently squeeze the hair remover cream in an even layer to cover the hair. Let sit for 5 minutes, you can leave on longer for stubborn thicker hair, but I didn’t even use the full 5 minutes. Gently remove the cream with a damp washcloth—DO NOT RUB—they mean it too! I rubbed on my upper lip before I read the directions (why do I always do that?) and it did irritate a bit afterward. Rinse off thoroughly with warm water, pat dry—no rubbing again.

Step #2

Apply moisturizer and massage into skin—the massage part is important.

No more unibrow, moustache or stray hairs. A perfectly smooth face for 6 bucks at your local drugstore!

I purchased this product myself

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Chanel Symphonie Blanche de Chanel

Chanel is my one of most coveted makeup brands. When I think of Chanel, a chic,  sophisticated and classy woman impeccably dressed comes to mind. And Chanel's new Symphonie Blanche collection is the makeup she would be wearing.

The White Whisper eye shadow quad features a quartet of shades - silver pink, pearly white, light gold and dark silver for a luminious effect. This quad will take you from day to night in a flash! $56

Fleurs Celestes de Chanel is a gorgeous trio of face highlighters. White, pink and bronze powders provides a natural looking radiance to accentuate the gentle curves of the face and décolleté. The compact itself is a work of art with an arrangement of embossed flowers across a 'field' of snowy white. $65

Nails stand out with LE VERNIS Nail Colour, in new limited-edition Blanc Pétale, a crisp white. $23

The collection also includes Poudre Douce in Rosee, a soft pressed powder with light reflecting pigments, Rouge Hydrabase lipstick in Simply Pink, Le Crayon Kohl eye pencil in new shade Blanc and Intimitable mascara, a favorite of mine. See the entire collection at

Some day a classic Chanel bag will be mine!

Tips for a Flawless Face

Step #1- Foundation

Foundation  makes your skin appear smoother and covers flaws like redness, scars, age spots, large pores and can soften wrinkles. The correct foundation for your skin type can give you an "airbrushed" finish, making you look softer and dare I say younger?  Foundations come in everything from a very sheer tinted moisturizer to heavy coverage and several different finishes from dewy to matte.

The perfect shade is key to looking natural and not like you're wearing a mask. With a Q-tip, test the color by swiping each shade along the jawline, if it disappears into your skin, you've got a match. Once you've nailed the color, sweep along your forehead, nose, chin, and cheekbones, then blend outward to help it disappear into your skin. Most cosmetic counters will give you samples of different shades to try at home. Always test in natural light and don't depend only on the lights at the makeup counter.

Step #2 - Concealer

Concealer is the life preserver of every woman's makeup bag. It can cover all sins--from undereye dark circles to sun damage to blemishes. Always apply over foundation for a natural look. For best results you'll need two concealers: one that's a shade lighter than your foundation to downplay dark, blue-toned, under-eye circles and make skin appear brighter. The other should match your foundation to help hide broken capillaries, and uneven skintone. Use a thin makeup brush (preferably synthetic) and apply concealer to the inner- eye corners first (by the tear ducts, where circles tend to appear darkest) and feather it outward.

Step #3 - Brighten

Learn to love highlighters. This secret weapon comes in liquid or powder form and is made with opalescent, pearl-like particles that give skin a sheer finish and a subtle, sexy sheen. Choose the shade closest to your skin tone: Pink and white luminizers complement fair skin, while gold and bronze suit medium to deep coloring. Keep in mind that a little goes a long way, so use a light hand. I suggest using a fan or skunk brush. Use on brow bones, along the tops of your cheekbones, and at the innermost corners of your eyes. Be sure to blend well to add radiance rather than noticable shimmer.

Step #4- Finish with Powder

Powder keeps foundation in place longer by blotting away excess oil. Use loose powder (it offers an airy, light finish) or use your favorite compact powder and sweep it on with a big fluffy brush. Remember to choose a shade that matches your skin.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Bobbi Brown Limited Edition Nude Eye Palette

Bobbi Brown is the Queen of "Me but Better" makeup; a natural look to enhance your best features without looking too harsh and madeup.  I love that! Her Limited Edition Nude Eye Palette personifies her philosophy beautifully. The shadows are a combination of 3 different textures: soft matte, lightly pearlized, and metallic high-shimmer.

Included Exclusive Shades: Navajo Eye Shadow, Pebble Metallic Eye Shadow, Chino Eye Shadow, Beige Linen Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow, Maple Sugar Metallic Eye Shadow, and Caviar Eye Shadow (which makes a great eyeliner).

The palette is housed in a customizable 3 Pan Palette, so you can interchange them with other Bobbi Brown eyeshadow, lip and blush pans. See the Fall 2009 Nudes Collection at

New from Clinique!

Clinique introduces Superbalanced Powder Makeup SPF 15 foundation. I'm so glad cosmetics companies have gone to this "grater" type packaging--no more mess and spills or wasted powder! Superbalanced Powder Foundation adjusts to dry and oily areas to balance combination skin and last up to 8 hours. Available in 8 shades for $34.50

Lip Tip #3--Application

Now that you've prepped your lips and found the perfect red lipstick, let's talk about flawless application.

When all eyes are on your lips, you want them to look fabulous.

Start with a lip liner that closely matches your  your lipstick, or a reverse lip liner. Blend the line into your lips using a lip brush. Fill in the rest of your lips with the lip liner--this acts a base and will help your lipstick last longer. Apply lipstick with a brush for more precision. Blot your lips and lightly powder with your face powder, reapply lipstick. Super glossy generally doesn't work well with reds; if you want to add a little shine, just dab some clear gloss in the center of your lower lip. This also makes your lips appear bigger.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Neiman Marcus Beauty Event is Here!

This leopard print tote filled with samples is free with any Neiman Marcus  $100 cosmetic or fragrance purchase, for free shipping use code FALLNM
Samples include:
• Kate Somerville Deep Tissue Repair: Experience the power and precision of the most advanced anti-aging ingredients at work. 0.16 ounces

• ReVive Moisturizing Renewal Cream: Exfoliates, retexturizes uneven skin, and improves skin clarity. Creates a luminous, firm, and youthful complexion within two weeks. 0.07 ounces

• CHANEL Cristalle Eau Verte Fragrance: Magnolia notes are rendered transparent with fresh citrus and Neroli accents, for a modern expression of a timeless floral bouquet. 0.06 ounces

• Prada L'Eau Ambree Fragrance: L'Eau Ambree combines an intricate and fresh approach to the balancing of the notes of cedrat, rose de mai, and amber. 0.05 ounces

• Dior Beauty Invitation for a Deluxe Sample L'Or De Vie Creme: Anti-oxidant rich and extravagantly luxurious, La Creme nourishes and smoothes the skin, while restoring firmness and density. The complexion appears renewed and feels miraculously even and velvety.

All your favorite brands have gifts with purchase including, Bobbi Brown, Laura Mercier, Lancome, Clinique, Dior, Chanel, Prescriptives and lots more. See them all here.

Earn Neiman Marcus gift cards when you spend $500 or more. Use code NMBEAUTY

Online now through Sept. 21,   In Store Sept. 10-20

Lip Tip #2--Choosing the Right Red

Reese Witherspoon is always pretty and classy.! This fall bold red lips are "in", does red lipstick ever go out of style? Always a classic sophisticated look, choosing the right red can be tricky. Last week we talked about how to prep your lips now let's talk the right red for you!

Many women are afraid of red lipstick, I know I was for the longest time. Wearing red is all about your skin's undertones;

Fair skintones look best in Poppy Red or Orange
Medium and olive skin can wear Fire Engine Reds
Deep Brick and Burgundy are pretty on dark skin and Fushica works for everyone.

Cooler skin should opt for plum shades and warmer skintones look better in brown based reds.

Don't know your skintone? Try this: look at the veins on the underside of your wrist, blue veins are usually cool, green veins warm.

If taking the plunge to red lips is a bit daunting, try a sheer gloss to ease in. Cover Girl TruShine lipsticks are actually a gloss in stick form, Fireshine, Valentine Shine, and IncrediFull Lipcolor is Maximum Red are all good choices, Chanel Glossimer in Spark works on most skintones.

Deal of the Week - Lorac Starter Kit for Only $18.50!!

Lorac has done it again! This starter kit is a great way to try Lorac cosmetics at a terrific price--$18.50. Founder Carol Shaw (Lorac is Carol spelled backwards), is a makeup artist who found her destiny after having a makeover at a Beverly Hills salon as a teenager. Carol creates treatment based makeup and puts care before color never sacrificing either. Read more about Carol here.

The Starter Kit includes:

3 eyeshadows in Cappuccino-light brown with sheen, Harmony-peach with sheen and Persuasion--creamy beige with sheen.

2 Lip Polishes in Delicious, a mauve shimmer and Bliss, a light taupe shimmer

Front of the Line liquid eyeliner in Black

2 Cream Lipsticks in Eloise and Charity--no descriptions yet

A mini TANtalizer Baked Bronzer--this bronzer has a cult following, no kidding!

A double ended eyeliner/eyeshadow brush

Lorac is one of my favorite brands, they make quality products at great prices. This is not teenybopper makeup, but suitable for us mature women. Even the "shimmer" eyeshadows are very subdued, actually more like sheen.

I especially love the palettes Carol creates, Snake Charmer is my very favorite palette of all time. Give this brand a try!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Lip Tip #1: Perfect Your Pout!

Lips make a bold statement this fall; here are some tips to keep your lips smooth and sexy.
Make sure to exfoliate your lips at the very least once a week. This will get rid of any dry skin or flakiness and help to diminish lines. I like Laura Mercier Lip Silk $20 or C.O. Bigelow Mentha Lip Buffer $7.50

To make your own lip scrub:

Take olive oil and add a pinch of brown sugar. Dab on your lips and let sit for a minute. Then take a wet wash cloth, or use your finger, and gently rub it back and forth. Rinse with water. Apply a lip balm or a moisturizing lipstick afterwards.

Use a nightly lip conditioner; try Laura Geller Heal and Seal Gloss, $22 or Caudalie Lip Conditioner, $12

To keep dark lipstick from bleeding, try one of these two methods:

Lightly powder lips with your face powder, then apply lipstick with a brush.

Use a reverse lip liner;  a colorless waxy lip pencil that keeps lipstick from bleeding. Outline your lips and then fill in with lipstick. The wax consistency creates an invisible barrier to keep lipstick from bleeding into fine lines. I use Benefit’s D’finer D’liner but there are plenty of others to try.

Now that your lips are pucker perfect, wear those bright colors with confidence!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Frugal Friday

An Allure award winner for best drugstore concealer, Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Double Face Perfector, is a concealer and highlighter in one tube. On one end is a concealer with a doe foot applicator and on the other end is a highlighter with a brush tip. Genius! I love the consistency of this, the concealer is not too thick, not too runny, it's just riiight. Covers redness, blemishes, dark circles and a myriad of problems we mature women face. Perfect for the under eye area, it goes on smooth and will not settle into fine lines. One of the ingredients is glycerin to help hydrate, so it never looks thick or cakey. Apply the highlighter to the inner corner of the eye to brighten or highlight the cupid's bow of the lip, or brow bone. And at about $9, it’s a winner in my beauty book too!

I purchased this product

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Fall 2009 Makeup Trends - The Color Purple!

Even though the thermometer outside my window says 90º, summer is almost over and the fall makeup collections have already started to hit stores. Dark dramatic eyes and bold lips are dominating the runways this year. Choose either the eyes or lips to be the focus but not both. The rest of the face should stay neutral with sheer foundation and barely there cheeks.

Smokey eyes in rich purples, grays and dark earthy tones will add drama. For a more feminine look, metallics in gold, silver and bronze add some sparkle to the eye.

Brows are au natural so put down the tweezers!

If your focus is on the lips, look for bright red and berry shades. Reds can range from crimson to brick to deep burgundy. This gives all skin tones a chance to participate in the trend. Purple makes an appearance again using pale lavenders to deep berries.

Nails echo the trends for eyes with golds and bronze and dark purple and deep burgundy.

Check back to see specific recommendations on brands and shades for fall 2009!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Introducing Ashley--She's kind of a big deal

Readers, I am thrilled to bring you an interview with my dear friend Ashley. She is an experienced freelance makeup artist who has worked with Prescriptives and Laura Mercier among others. Ashley is smart, funny, skilled and knows a helleva lot about makeup, not to mention that she is downright adorable! I could go on forever talking about Ashley’s talents, but let’s get to it, shall we?

PB: Should your makeup technique change with age? How?

Ashley: I don't know that your technique as far as application should change, but as a mature woman you don't want to walk around wearing 'dated' make-up, such as bright blue eyeliner and coral lipstick... although those are just generalizations.

PB: What are your top three makeup tips for middle aged women?

Ashley: Wear bronzer, choose an eyeshadow that can be worn as a wash everyday and a good plum lipstick for an everyday look. Also, a nice and emoliant moisturizer plumps the skin and makes you look healthy.

PB: What is the biggest makeup mistake women make?

Ashley: Trying to be too trendy. Editorial photo shoot makeup is not intended for everyday use. Find a look that compliments you, not 14 yr. old models in overpriced clothes.

PB: What are 3-5 products a woman should have in her makeup bag at all times?

Ashley: -A good mascara, I prefer Prescriptives Beyond Long in Black (always black!!) it is water and sweat resistant.

-Bronzer--Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess is a great one, that won't go orange on you

-A good under eye concealer

-Blush-- Laura Mercier Wild Bouquet looks great on both warm and cool skin tones

PB: How do you decide what colors or shades to use on a particular person?

Ashley: I tend to ask a lot of questions. I don't want the person to go too far out of their comfort zone. I like to take time and find looks that the person can use for everyday use and then add on a couple of items that will take them into an evening look. If a woman always wears browns and golds, I will try to incorporate some plum or green.

PB: What is your favorite “look” to do?

Ashley: My favorite thing to do with a client is to look thru her makeup bag. I need to know what I am working with, and go from there. Everyday looks are my favorite. I do enjoy doing evening makeup, but have to be honest that smokey eyes and over-bronzed looks are not my fav and scream sorority girl! I like a classy look.

Me too, Ashley! Thank you so much!!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Clinique Most Wanted - Limited Edition

While perusing the cosmetics counters in my local Macy’s, I spotted this darling palette from Clinique. Aptly named “Most Wanted” it is inspired by the most popular Clinique lipstick shades; Blushing Nude, Black Honey and Raspberry Glace. Each silvery zippered compact features a Colour Surge Eye Shadow Trio and Soft-Pressed Powder Blusher. The Most Wanted Compact is Limited Edition and available in Most Wanted Nudes, Berries and Deep. It’s the perfect size for your handbag and great for touch ups or travel. $36