7 Festive Makeup Looks For Christmas

7 festive makeup looks for christmas

I can’t believe Christmas is next week! How time has flown this year! Have you decided what to wear at your Christmas lunch (or dinner) with your family and at the holiday parties with your friends? If not, check out the options below. Whether your makeup style is simple, classic, bold, or modern, you’ll surely find something that you’ll love (or inspiration to create a look of your own):

1. Classic Christmas

Let’s start with a classic Christmas look that’s flattering on anyone: gold eyeshadow and red lips. Perfect for a party, you can wear it to have lunch or dinner with your family too.

2. White, silver, and gold

Inspired by a Christmas tree, this white, silver and gold look evokes all the magic of a white Christmas. And it’s super easy to do!

3. Green eyes, red lips

Green and red is a very Christmassy combination. Here’s a glamorous way to wear it without looking like a clown.

4. Gold Eyeliner

Turn your sultry smokey eye into a festive look with a pop of gold eyeliner. It’s simple and will make you stand out at any parties you will attend this holiday season.

5. Festive with a twist

Green eyeshadow is always in at Christmas. To add a twist to this look, pair it with purple lipstick. It’s gorgeous and modern.

6. Red, green, and gold

Is there a more festive combination that red, green, and gold? Surprisingly wearable, this look is great for those who feel daring on Christmas day.

7. Red Glitter

Heading to a Christmas party? If you feel daring, and want to make sure you won’t pass unnoticed, try this glittery red look with a winged eyeliner. Beautiful and sparkly.

Which of these looks is your favourite? Are you gonna wear one of them at Christmas?

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Product Review: Anastasia Clear Brow Gel

anastasia clear brow gel 01

Name: Clear Brow Gel
Brand: Anastasia
Size: 0.28ml
Price: $22.00

From Anastasia’s website:
This best-selling formula tames unruly brows without leaving them stiff, flaky or sticky. Fortified with rich botanical conditioners and essential oils, this luxurious formula can be worn alone or layered over Anastasia’s Brow Powder Duo or Brow Pencils to set your perfect application all day.

What I liked:
– lightweight, non-sticky formula
– dries quickly
– easy to apply
– holds unruly brows in place
– longlasting
– can be used alone or with a brow powder or pencil

What I didn’t like:
– if you’re looking for a gel that dries completely matte, this is not for you
– if you use it regularly, you’ll run out of it pretty soon

What part of your makeup routine do you often neglect? For me it’s eyebrows. I guess it’s because I like mine the way they are. They’re not perfect. They’re not full and perfectly defined, but not too sparse and messy either. But they do tend to get a bit unruly during the day.

anastasia clear brow gel 02

At least they did before I discovered Anastasia Clear Brow Gel. This stuff looks like a mascara, complete with wand and all. But works a lot better than clear mascara for your eyebrows.

The wand, which picks up enough product to coat both eyebrows, is short and thin, with soft bristles that don’t scratch skin. It easily deposits the lightweight, non-sticky gel on your eyebrows. The gel dries in seconds, providing only a slight sheen that doesn’t make your brows look unnatural.

anastasia clear brow gel 03

You can use Anastasia Clear Brow Gel on its own, like I do, or to set your favourite brow powder or pencil. Either way, it holds your hair in place, making your eyebrows look well-groomed and defined, for hours. I apply it in the morning, and by the time I remove it at night, my eyebrows still look great.

Available at: Amazon, Sephora, and Ulta

Summary
Anastasia Clear Brow Gel has a lightweight, non-sticky, fast-drying texture that tames unruly brows, keeping them in place from morning till night.

Rating: 4.5/5

Disclosure: this item was a gift from a friend. In addition, the review contains an affiliate link. For more information, please see my disclaimer.
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New Holiday Collections 2014: Sephora Favorites & Sinful Colors

Hello gorgeous!

If you like gift sets and nail polishes, you’re gonna love the new holiday collections from Sephora Favorites and Sinful Colors. Let’s take a look at them, shall we?

Sephora Favorites

sephora favourites holiday 2014

Sephora Favorites sets are perfect for those who want to try lots of products from different brands without breaking the bank. The only problem is, which one to choose?

SUPERSTARS ($75.00)
This set contains:
0.003 oz Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Dark Brown
0.25 oz Benefit Cosmetics POREfessional
0.05 oz Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real Mascara In Jet Black
1.7 oz Bumble And Bumble Surf Spray
0.34 oz Chloè by Chloè Rollerball
0.4 oz Formula X Nail Color in Ignite
0.08 oz Fresh Sugar Rosè Tinted Lip Treatment
0.5 oz Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil
0.16 oz Nars Cosmetics Blush in Orgasm
1 oz Smashbox Cosmetics Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 35 in Light
0.016 oz Stila Cosmetics Stay All Day® Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner In Intense Black
0.05 oz Urban Decay Eye shadow In Sin

GLITZ & GLAM PARTY ESSENTIALS ($45.00)
This set contains:
0.1 oz Smashbox Be Legendary lipstick in Infrared Matte (matte true red)
1.4 oz Drybar Detox dry shampoo
0.5 oz Deborah Lippmann Good Girl Gone Bad nail color
0.03 oz Laura Mercier Caviar Stick eye color in Rose Gold
0.049 oz Stila Cosmetics Magnificent Metals Foil Finish eye shadow in Metallic Dusty Rose
1 Pair of SEPHORA COLLECTION false eye lashes in Astonish
0.08 oz Benefit Watt’s Up! highlighter in Luminous Champagne
0.035 oz Make Up For Ever HD High Definition Microfinish Powder
0.04 oz Lancome Artliner eyeliner in Noir

DRAW THE LINE ($30.00) ($79.00 Value)
The set contains:
0.028 oz Sephora Collection Contour Eye Pencil 12 HR Wear in Black Lace
0.01 oz Stila Cosmetics Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner in Dark Brown
0.007 oz Kat Von D Deluxe Tattoo liner in Trooper (black)
0.01 oz Nars Cosmetics Via Veneto Larger Than Life® Long Wear Eyeliner (black)
0.01 oz Deluxe Marc Jacobs Beauty Highliner in Blacquer
0.02 oz Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Double Ended Eye Pencil in Perversion and Rockstar

LASHSTASH ($45.00)
This set contains:
0.05 oz Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real Mascara In Jet Black
0.2 oz Buxom® Lash Mascara In Blackest Black
0.07 oz Clinique Dual Ended High Impact Mascara And Lash Primer
0.17 oz Josie Maran Argan Black Oil Mascara
0.1 oz Kat Von D Immortal Lash 24HR Mascara
0.135 oz Lancôme Paris Hypnôse Drama Mascara
0.84 oz Sephora Collection Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover
0.067 oz Sephora Collection Outrageous Curl Dramatic Volume And Curl Mascara
0.32 oz Smashbox Full Exposure Mascara In Jet Black
0.08 oz Urban Decay Perversion Mascara
0.06 oz YSL Mascara Volume Effect Faux Baby Doll

GIVE ME SOME LIP ($25.00)
This set contains:
0.03 oz Urban Decay Mini Naked Revolution Lipstick
0.12 oz Nars Deluxe Orgasm Lip Gloss
0.07 oz Buxom Mini Full On Lip Cream in White Russian
0.02 oz Marc Jacobs Mini Lust for Lacquer in Kissability
0.05 oz Deluxe Bite High Pigment Lip Pencil in Meritage
0.20 oz Full-size Smashbox Be Legendary Gloss in Pout

GIVE ME MORE LIP ($59.00)
The set includes:
0.05 oz bareMinerals Marvelous Moxie™ Lipstick in Speak Your Mind (bubble gum pink)
0.01 oz Benefit Cosmetics Hydrating Tinted Lip Balm
0.07 oz Bite Beauty Luminous Crème Lipstick in Palomino (vibrant magenta)
0.04 oz Buxom Mini Full Bodied lipstick in Menace
0.08 oz Fresh Sugar Berry Tinted Lip Treatment
0.03 oz Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick in Icon
0.10 oz Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Outlaw
0.09 oz Laura Mercier Lip Glacé in Blush (medium rose brown)
0.09 oz Laura Mercier Crème Smooth Lip Colour in Red Armour
0.025 oz MAKE UP FOR EVER Waterproof Lip Liner Pencil
0.08 oz Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Black Dahlia Lip Tar: Matte Test Tube
0.068 oz Sephora Collection Rouge Infusion
0.14 oz Stila Stay All Day® Vinyl Lip Gloss in Nude Vinyl (medium pink nude)
0.06 oz Tarte LipSurgence Lip Tint in Moody
0.04 oz Tarte Lipsurgence Power Pigment in Flush
0.05 oz Too Faced Cosmetics La Creme Color Drenched Lip Cream in Naked Dolly
0.16 oz Too Faced Cosmetics Melted Liquefied Long Wear lipstick

PERFUME SAMPLER ($60.00)
This set contains:
0.06 oz Burberry Brit Sheer spray (Certificate redeems for 1.7 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.04 oz Chloé Chloé spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.06 oz Elizabeth And James Nirvana Black spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.06 oz Elizabeth And James Nirvana White spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.05 oz Giorgio Armani Acqua Di Gioia spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.06 oz Gucci Flora By Gucci Gorgeous Gardenia dabber (Certificate redeems for 1.6 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.05 oz Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.05 oz Lancôme La Vie Est Belle spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz L’Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.04 oz Marc Jacobs Daisy spray (Certificate redeems for 1.7 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.03 oz Narciso Rodriguez Narciso Rodriguez For Her spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.05 oz Prada Candy spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.04 oz Thierry Mugler Alien spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Refillable Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.05 oz Tom Ford Black Orchid spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Parfum Spray)
0.03 oz Versace Bright Crystal spray (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)

COLOGNE SAMPLER ($60.00)
This set contains:
0.06 oz Burberry Brit Rhythm For Men spray (Certificate redeems for 1.7 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.03 oz Jean Paul Gaultier “Le Male” spray (Certificate redeems for 1.3 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.05 oz Giorgio Armani Acqua Di Giò spray (Certificate redeems for 1.7 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.05 oz John Varvatos John Varvatos dabber(Certificate redeems for 2.5 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.06 oz Gucci Guilty Pour Homme dabber (Certificate redeems for 1.0 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.06 oz Lacoste Eau De Lacoste L.12.12 Noir dabber (Certificate redeems for 3.3 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.06 oz Gucci Made To Measure spray (Certificate redeems for 1.6 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.05 oz Paco Rabanne 1 Million spray (Certificate redeems for 1.7 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.06 oz Hugo Boss Boss Bottled Night dabber(Certificate redeems for 1.6 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.05 oz Ralph Lauren Polo Red spray (Certificate redeems for 2.5 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.03 oz Issey Miyake L’eau D’issey Pour Homme spray (Certificate redeems for 1.35 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
0.05 oz Yves Saint Laurent L’homme spray (Certificate redeems for 1.3 fl oz Eau de Toilette Spray)
Faux leather toiletry case

The sets are already available at Sephora.

Sinful Colors

sinful colors holiday collection 2014

Sinful Colors is not just dreaming of a snow white Christmas – it includes a dash of silver, purple, green, a mélange of gorgeous blues, hints of gold and stunning glitter. Dreamy shades and illuminating textures mean there’s something for everyone on the list this season:

HOLIDAY FAVES
Gilded: a transparent shimmer with gold & red
Ice Dream: cerulean glitter with a translucent silver base
Let’s Talk: royal purple
Out of this World: perfect silver with swirls of glimmer
Pine Away: metallic glittering tree green
Red Eye: metallic holiday red
Snow Me White: the snowiest white
Sugar Sugar: a candy cane, red-hot red

BLUES & HINTS OF GOLD
All About You: a sheer shade glimmering with gold
Cinderella: an illuminating pastel blue
Endless Blue: a deep wave of cobalt
Gold Medal: the perfect metallic gold
Hottie: clear azure blue twinkling with silver
Ice Blue: soft indigo exploding with silver sparkle
Midnight Blue: the deepest blue indulgence

DECKED WITH GLITTER FLAKES
Decadent: dazzling red metallic flakes
Galax-Sea: magical green flakes
Holiday Rebel: green & red flakes laced with black
Twilight Twinkles: brilliant flakes of gold
Unwrap Me: decorative black & red flakes

OPALESCENT TOPPERS
Bring It Sheer: sheer icy green shimmer
Outta Space: sheer red shimmer

Each nail polish costs only $1.99. They are all exclusively available at Walgreens.

Do you like these collections?

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Sunday Random Ramblings, Vol.162

Hello gorgeous!

Ready for today’s random ramblings? Here we go:

Party Dresses

Party season is fast approaching. Here are a few dresses to celebrate it in style:

party dresses 01

H&M Sequined Dress / Suzannah Polaire 1920s Couture Dress / Matthew Williamson Embellished lace and chiffon mini dress / Halston Heritage Lace-jacquard mini dress

party dresses 02

French Connection Embellished Mini Dress with High Neck / Modcloth Time and Grace Dress in Merlot / Topshop Sequin and Feather Trim Shift Dress by Opulence / Miss Selfridge Lily bodycon dress

Which dress is your favourite?

What I’m Reading Now

brain scripts for sale success
BrainScripts for Sales Success: 21 Hidden Principles of Consumer Psychology for Winning New Customers by Drew Eric Whitman
Drew Eric Whitman has written BrainScripts For Success to explain to businesses how to use the principles of consumer psychology to win new customers. I read it for the opposite reason: to find out the ways businesses use to trick us into buying their products. Either way, it is a very informative read. Now, Whitman is no conman. He often states that these principles should be implemented only when you have a good service or product to sell. That way, you won’t be cheating your customers. His advice, based on psychological principles, explains what drives a person to buy something and how a salesperson can, with the right words and techniques, direct the conversation to make the sale. The writing style is clear and straightforward. Overall, an eye opening read for both salespeople and their customers. Available at Amazon.

The Links

Blogging vs real life: don’t feel pressured to spend a fortune - London Beauty Queen

Brands to watch in 2015 - Beauty Junkie London

Clothes numbers don’t define us - Zoe London

Is sesame oil the best thing for your skin?
– The Beauty Brains

Egg whites for firmer skin? – Paula’s Choice

Makeup Addict Tag

This week’s Sunday Survey is a tag! I was nominated for the Makeup Addict Tag by the lovely Anubhuti of Sense It Eve. Thanks hun! Here are my answers:

1. Which product do you still keep buying more of despite having plenty in your collection?
Pink lipglosses. I just can’t resist them.

2. What is the one product that you can not live without?
Lipbalm. I need to have one with me wherever I go.

3. Favorite Makeup Brand?
Just one?! I love Sleek Makeup a lot. Their products are pigmented, longlasting, and affordable. But Pupa also has a special place in my heart. It’s the first brand I feel in love with, and they still keep releasing lots of cool, great quality products.

4. How big is your makeup collection?
Too big! lol

5. How do you store it?
In a four drawer chest and a tall cupboard.

6. How many items of makeup have you got in your handbag at the moment?
Only lip balm. I rarely reapply makeup during the day so I usually don’t take any with me.

7. If you could raid another blogger’s stash, who would it be?
I don’t know. I’m very happy with my collection.

8. How long does your usual makeup routine takes and how many products do you use?
It depends on whether I’m doing a complicated eye look or just apply a cream eyeshadow. I like to wear a different look every day. In the first case, I’d say about half an hour, otherwise 10 minutes. Apart from eyeshadow, I always use mascara, foundation, concealer, blush, and lipgloss.

9. Have you ever bought makeup knowing you would never use it?
Nope. If I buy something is because I hope to use it. If I don’t, it’s because it either doesn’t suit me or it’s not that good.

I tag everyone who wants to do this! Here are the questions again:
1. Which product do you still keep buying more of despite having plenty in your collection?
2. What is the one product that you can not live without?
3. Favorite Makeup Brand?
4. How big is your makeup collection?
5. How do you store it?
6. How many items of makeup have you got in your handbag at the moment?
7. If you could raid another blogger’s stash, who would it be?
8. How long does your usual makeup routine takes and how many products do you use?
9. Have you ever bought makeup knowing you would never use it?

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Know Your Ingredients: Amniotic Extract

amniotic extract

What it is
The type of amniotic extract (or fluid) used in cosmetics is usually derived from the amniotic fluid of cows. It is extracted from live animals in their third to six month of gestation, without, supposedly, any harm to mother and child.

What it does
Although amniotic extract is said to be a treatment for premature aging and other skincare issues, I only found one study on its efficacy. The study shows that pure concentrations of human amniotic fluid can help wounds heal faster.

Side effects
Amniotic extract is generally considered to be safe.

(Source: Journal of Hand Surgery, March 2001)
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Can Perricone Cold Plasma Really Correct The Ten Most Visible Signs Of Aging?

perricone cold plasma

Cold Plasma, one of Perricone’s best-selling products, makes some high claims. Created after five years of research, it contains a powerful cocktail of antioxidant, peptides, and other goodies touted to be capable of correcting the ten most visible signs: wrinkles, enlarged pores, dryness, redness, discolouration, uneven skin tone, impurities, loss of firmness, loss of smoothness, and loss of radiance. But does it really work?

What Perricone Says

A revolutionary anti-aging product represents Dr. Perricone’s most comprehensive research to date and is the result of five years of development. Through Dr. Perricone’s patented delivery system, Cold Plasma offers the skin all it needs for optimal health. Cold Plasma helps correct the ten most visible signs of aging: wrinkles, enlarged pores, dryness, redness, discoloration, uneven skin tone, impurities, loss of firmness, loss of smoothness, and loss of radiance. Whatever your age or skin type, Cold Plasma delivers extraordinary results. A patented, revolutionary delivery system that drives essential nutrients deep into the skin and acts as an ideal base to layer targeted treatments for enhanced results.

Ingredient Analysis

tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate vitamin c

Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate and Ascorbyl Palmitate

Vitamin C is one of the most beneficial ingredients used in skincare. Studies have shown that it can fight free radicals, boost collagen production, enhance the effectiveness of sunscreen, brighten skin, and even reduce dark and sun spots. Cold Plasma contains two forms of Vitamin C, Ascorbyl Palmitate and Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate.

Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate penetrates more deeply and is more stable than other forms of Vitamin C. Even so, no form of Vitamin C (or any other antioxidant for that matter) should ever be packaged in a jar. That’s because these ingredients degrade, losing a bit of their effectiveness, whenever they are exposed to light and air.

I know some people who love this moisturizer and, to keep it stable and effective, pour its content in an opaque, air-tight bottle but, at this price point, that shouldn’t be necessary. The brand should take care to package it properly.

Retinyl_palmitate

Retinyl Palmitate

Retinyl Palmitate is a combination of retinol (pure Vitamin A) and Palmitic Acid. It is easily absorbed into the skin, where it is converted first into retinol, then retinaldehyde, and finally into retinoic acid. Because it undergoes so many conversions, it is less effective, but gentler, than other forms of Vitamin A.

Like all forms of Vitamin A, retinyl palmitate is an effective antioxidant that can fight the premature signs of aging, such as wrinkles, and dark spots. But it, too, needs to be packaged in an air-tight, opaque tube or bottle to remain stable, and effective for long.

palmitoyl oligopeptide

Peptides

Peptides are very popular at the moment. Cold Plasma contains quite a few. Oligopeptide-17 and Acetyl Hexapeptide-8 are said to fight wrinkles by inhibiting muscle movement; Palmitoyl Oligopeptide stimulates collagen production; and Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-3 reduces inflammation.

Peptides are a bit controversial because no one knows exactly how they work yet. Their molecules are too big to penetrate skin, but it is suggested they are effective even when left of the surface on the skin, where they signal to skin receptors present there how cells should behave.

DMAE

Dimethyl MEA (DMAE)

Touted as a “facelift in a jar” for its ability to firm skin, DMAE is quite a controversial ingredient. Why? Because we don’t know how it works exactly nor how safe it is. A 2007 study has found that DMA can damage skin cells, suggesting that it’s as a reaction to this damage that skin thickens.

A later study, performed in 2009, confirmed that DMAE thickens skin, and found that it increase skin’s hydration as well, but didn’t detect any side effects. Further research on DMAE is needed to figure out just how good (or bad) it is for skin.

But there’s another concern. According to Paula Begoun, DMAE, to be effective, must be formulated at a ph of 10, which is highly alkaline (not good for skin) and can cause dryness. Skincare products are formulated at a much more skin-friendly ph (5.5-6.5 range), and, if Cold Plasma is too, then DMAE won’t be able to do much anyway.

Isopropyl_palmitate

Further considerations on the formula

The revolutionary delivery system used by Perricone in Cold Plasma is simply Phosphatidylcholine, which has the ability to help other ingredients better penetrate into the skin. Glycerin, drawing water from the environment into the skin, provides some hydration.

I was less thrilled to see Isopropyl Plamitate on the label. This ingredient, when used in high doses, never fails to break me out. Yet, I know many people who can use it without experiencing any side effects. Still, if you have oily skin, you may want to avoid it, just in case.

Full Ingredient List

Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Phosphatidylcholine, Isopropyl Palmitate, L-Tyrosine, Butylene Glycol, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Oligopeptide-17, Ceteareth-20, Magnesium Aspartate, Zinc Gluconate, Dimethyl MEA (DMAE), Docosahexaenoic Acid, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Phenoxyethanol, Dimethicone, Caprylyl Glycol, Glycolic Acid, Retinyl Palmitate, Saccaromyces Ferment, Elaeis Guineensis (Palm) Oil, Carbomer, Disodium EDTA, Tocotrienols, Copper Gluconate, Polysorbate 20, Sorbic Acid, Tocopherol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Astaxanthin, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-3

Avaibility

You can buy Perricone Cold Plasma at Sephora. A 1oz jar will set you back a whopping $155.00!

The Bottom Line

I would be a lot more impressed with Perricone Cold Plasma if it were packaged in a tube or bottle. The formula is good, but the jar packaging compromises the efficacy of its most beneficial anti-aging ingredients.

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