Monday, December 30, 2013

A Blitz of Glitz

You know, the last holiday of the year is around the corner and I've been contemplating what kind of bling I want to incorporate into my look (if any) for the festivities.  In lieu of the usual celebratory suspects like gold and silver, I may opt for some pretty sparkle I found during an excursion to a CCO (Cosmetic Company Outlet).   I'm still finalizing the deets, but it looks like I'll be enlisting the high-watt capacity of MAC's Glitter in Fuchsia to help me ring in the new year.

Encased in a plastic vial with a stopper and rubberized, screw on/off lid, Fuchsia glitter barely touches on pink and instead looks more like an aggressive shade of purple.  The fine flecks of sparkle can be used anywhere on the body and face, however, is not recommended for use on or around the eyes.  It can also up the ante of products like lip glosses and nail polishes by adding an extra dimension of color, texture and shine.

I'm not going to go crazy with it, but I'm thinking of using it to glitz up my lips... and/or perhaps put some in a design around my eye.  Not sure yet, though.  But I do fancy the color and am kinda excited to use it in a look.  If I come up with something interesting, I'll be sure to document it in a post.  And if my imagination proves to be less than inspired that evening and I look a hot mess, all supporting evidence will be destroyed and will never see the light of day.  Just so that you know...

Anywho, we shall see.  But in the meantime, please enjoy your New Year's Eve, be safe and I'll see you soon on the other side!

MAC Glitter Fuchsia is available at their boutiques as well as MAC's online site, and retails for $21/4.5g.

Friday, December 27, 2013

A Sheep For My Piggies

Hey, how was everyone's Christmas?  Hope you all had a merry one.  My mom sent me a few gifts in the mail and just to give you a little background, my mom can be a little "hit-or-miss" with her gift giving.  This year's "miss" was a pair of brown, polyester pants with an elastic waist!

Polyester?!  With a gathered, stretchy waist?!  I mean, no offense to anyone who loves these types of slacks, but these are totally not my style.  Who in the world rocks polyester pants with an elastic waist besides the elderly?  What my mom was thinking, I haven't a clue... and, apparently, neither does she as she offered up no reasonable explanation for her fashion gaffe during our phone conversation later that day.  In fact, she immediately started to laugh as I described my horror when I unwrapped and opened the box.  We both did.  But as terrible as the trousers were, she more than made up for the trauma they caused with the other thoughtful gifts she provided, including an adorable pair of slippers that I'm totally in love with!

The slippers are from Haflinger, a German company that specializes in woolen footwear.  The uppers of the cream, clog-style slip-ons are made from tight, boiled wool while the soles are more of a felt peppered with rubber dots for traction.  And knitted across the tops of both feet is a gray and black sheep with one half of its body landing on the right foot and the other on the left.   Too cute!

When I say that these feel like a pair of mittens on my feet, please believe me.  They are warm, soft and comfy just like a pair of slippers should feel.  Haflinger does offer them in various styles and adorned with different prints and animals, but I love my sheep.  I love these so much that I hardly want to wear them 'cause I don't wanna mess them up!  I don't want a drop of water nor a speck of dirt to mar their beauty.  I mean, I am going to wear them... but with extra caution.  No eating spaghetti over this cute, woolly mutton!  No, ma'am!

But I did enjoy my holiday; I ate well and watched movies to my little heart's content.  I lovingly teased my mom about her one gift and gushed vocally over the rest, especially my new clogs.  Unique and whimsical with a double dash of darling, it's a gift I was all too excited about and simply had to share this excitement with all of you.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas, Y'all!

Hey, everyone!  It's Christmas, my favorite holiday - woo-hoo! 

I just wanted to take this time to thank each and every one of you for giving me moments of your time and reading my blog.  Whether you're a casual reader, an ardent follower or just happened upon this post today, I so very much appreciate it.  I am thankful for the comments some of you leave me as well as the "shares" and forwards to other social media outlets.  This Internet writing thang has allowed me to meet a lot of wonderful people, too... people I probably would have never met otherwise, which has made this whole blogging experience all the more richer for me.  I don't know how much longer I'm going to be at this; the minute it becomes heavy and toilsome for me I am going to holster my trusty "pen" for sure.   But for right now, I'm enjoying the ride and I'm so glad to have you guys tag along as the Thelmas to my Louise.

So, with that being said, I want to send out my ever-growing gratitude to you all for sending a look my way.  May your holiday be festive and filled with copious amounts of joy!  Please be safe and have a very merry Christmas, y'all!      

Monday, December 23, 2013

Barbie: Super Star Brandy

If you're long enough in the tooth, you may remember her as the young daughter in the 90s sitcom Thea.  Or perhaps you're more familiar with her as the sugar n' spice teen in the comedy series Moesha, which ultimately became her vehicle to stardom as she parlayed the popularity of the show into a hugely successful singing/music career.  And with such notable feathers in her creative cap, it's no wonder how or why Ms. Brandy Norwood garnered a series of Barbie dolls during the height of her popularity.  If you have a moment, I'd like to share one of the two that reside in my collection.  It's a Barbie appropriately labeled Brandy - Super Star.

With her hand raised in the air as if she were waiving to her adoring fans, this doll captures perfectly Brandy's teenaged free spiritedness as well as her unique and fun approach to style.

Her funky fashions begin with a ruffled, lime-colored, midriff-bearing top with matching three-quarter sleeved shrug, which is also accented with small ruffles.

On her legs she is rocking a slick pair of aqua and yellow hip-huggers, complete with disco inspired reflective dots and flared bottoms.

Sticking with the laid back "grooviness" of her ensemble, she casually sports a furry, orange cross-body bag...

and an incredibly thick (and gnarly) pair of open toe, orange platforms.  Can you dig it, baby?

Now there's absolutely no denying the uncanny likeness the doll has to the real McCoy; from her wide-set, almond-shaped eyes to her broad smile, every nuance of Brandy's visage has been meticulously noted and successfully applied.  Even her face-framing baby hairs along with her signature braids have been properly accounted for.  They really did their due diligence in replicating Ms. Norwood to a capital T.

I like that they kept her makeup simple, allowing her eyes to be enhanced only slightly by a soft frost of pink topped off with a pale gold highlight.  Her lips have a bolder approach to color as they are a soft yellow-gold lined in plum.   Very pretty.

As I've stated in previous posts, I honestly see it as an honor whenever a celebrity/star gets a doll, especially a Barbie, fashioned after them.  It's a celebration of their achievements as well as a visual accolade for their talent(s).  And if the devil is truly in the details then the Brandy Barbie series is truly wicked as they spared no toil in making her look like the genuine article, which is a feature - fan of the star or not - that just about anyone can appreciate.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Painting By the Numbers, Pt. 3

Actually, this third and final installment in my Artful Eye review should be titled "Coloring By the Numbers" since this eyeshadow palette - the last in the collection - is covered in crayons.  But for the sake of continuity... we will forgo semantics here and just focus in on the absolute loveliness that is Stila's Artful Eye Collector's Edition Vol. III.

L to R: Light Apricot, Umber, Aquamarine, Violet, Ocean

If you read my previous posts regarding Vol. I and Vol. II then you know that I was pretty excited to give this one a go.  And I'm so, SO happy to report that this baby did NOT disappoint!  Volume III is a pack of five vibrant shadows encased in a sturdy, cardboard palette complete with a magnetic closure.  And when I tell you that the eyeshadows are potently pigmented, soft to the touch and all around awesome, please believe me!  Each of the pans yielded color with notable vigor and left a full blast of opaqueness with every swatch.  Gorgeous, I tell ya!  Absolutely gorgeous...

L to R: Light Apricot, Umber, Aquamarine

L to R: Violet, Ocean

L to R: Ocean, Violet, Aquamarine, Umber, Light Apricot

Did I already express to y'all how much I love this palette?  I LOVE this palette!  I think the entire Artful Eye collection is awesome, but I have to say that Volume III is my favorite out of the group.  And those who are familiar with me know why: it's robust with color with a pair of pretty neutrals thrown in for good measure.  Volume II is a very close second with Vol. I rounding out the list as the essential workhorse, helping to blend and highlight.

But I do adore the collection in its entirety and simply cannot wait to become a "painted lady" and apply all of these wonderful colors to my eager, blank canvas.  Artful Eye was an excellent B-Fri find that I'm totally over the moon about.  #Winning!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Painting By the Numbers, Pt. 2

If you read my previous post then you know that I've been chit-chatting about the Stila Artful Eye collection that I recently bought, which consists of a total of three five-pan palettes.  I just tried out the second one in the lineup and I really like it.  So, if you have a moment to spare, allow me to introduce to you the Artful Eye Collector's Edition palette Vol. II.

L to R: Patchouli, Ember, Sandalwood, Rosewood, Eclipse

Volume II is an assembly of five neutral shades: a satiny eggshell; silver foiled taupe; muted copper; rich, charcoal taupe and black.  All the shades are decidedly moodier than the ones in Volume I and would bode well for a day-to-night smoky eye look.  Ember and Sandalwood are high pearls, Rosewood a pearl, Patchouli plays out more like a satin and Eclipse remains the lone matte.

L to R: Patchouli, Ember, Sandalwood

L to R: Rosewood, Eclipse

L to R: Patchouli, Ember, Sandalwood, Rosewood, Eclipse

Every shade in this palette yielded ample color and I honestly can't wait to put this baby to use.  It's the perfect size for transport and the shades so versatile.  Lovely, indeed.

So perfectly content I am with Volumes I and II that I can't help but have high expectations for Volume III, the final offering in the collection.  It's a graphic departure from the lovely, subdued oatmeals and brown-based metals of the first two.  And it's one that I am anxious to share with you in my next post.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Painting By the Numbers

OK, so I'm going to keep the B-Fri sales train going by showing you guys another set of shadows I got during that shopping weekend.  It's the first in a set of artist themed palettes from Stila which, ironically, ended up being the very last one I bought.  I figured for only ten smackers each I might as well get the entire collection.  And so, if you have a moment, allow me to chatter a bit about Stila's Artful Eye Collector's Edition, Vol. I.

Volume I comprises five neutral/highlighter shades that include a golden apricot, pearled honey, pale peach, faint pink and dirty gray-mauve.  The sturdy, cardboard palette is covered in a motif of paint tubes that correspond by color to the eyeshadows nestled inside.

L to R: Oasis, Glee, Starlight, Shell, Grace

L to R: Oasis, Glee

L to R: Starlight, Shell, Grace

L to R: Oasis, Glee, Starlight, Shell, Grace

I found all the shades to be highly pigmented and soft to the touch except for Grace, which was of a stiffer/drier nature and a tad bit fussy while trying to swatch.  I had to do a few passes to get suitable opacity from this shadow, which seems to be a satin freckled with silver pearl.  However, the others were true "pearls" as they yielded ample color with no problem.

Well, I've got two more books of shadows from this Artful series that I'll be sharing: Volume II is an eye-catching set of neutrals while Volume III boasts a more colorful profile, neither of which I've tested yet.  But if Volume I is any type of ambassador for the collection then it does well in painting a promising picture of what the next two may have in store.