Friday, March 29, 2013

A Punch of Orange

ORANGE!  Yep, that's about the sum of it.  That's about as accurate a description I can muster for this nail polish.  There's no sparkle, no multicolored pearls, no color shifting pigments... it's just orange.  But that doesn't make it boring.  It's a bright, pretty shade of orange, hence the name of Orly's nail lacquer Orange Punch.

Orange Punch is described as being a high-gloss nail polish, but I really beg to differ.  When I applied the first coat it dried down to an almost matte finish.  I applied a total of two coats, which provided the proper opacity I was looking for as well as a little more of a shine to the finish.  However, it is not nearly as glossy as my other nail polishes, including my other Orly shades.  It's not a huge issue, though; any glossy top coat can easily cure this, but I thought it was worth mentioning.

I do think that it is a fetching shade that looks good on the hands and makes for an especially fab summer foot.  And for those that like to dabble in nail art and designs and such, this would be a nice addition to your line up of colors.  Orange Punch performed well, was not streaky and dried down rather quickly.  Overall, I am pleased to have this on hand (pun intended) for the upcoming warmer months.

Orly Orange Punch is available at Sally's Beauty Supply, Ulta and, and retails for around $8.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Barbie: Spirit of The Earth

Bedecked in a blue fringed dress and full-length, camel colored coat, this Native American beauty is a sight to behold.  From the top of her head to the soles of her feet, the attention to detail on this doll is remarkable.  Please allow me to share with you one of the stars of my collection, Spirit of The Earth Barbie.

Spirit of the Earth was one in a series of limited edition dolls that highlighted Native American women and the culture as a whole with respect to their relationship with nature and Mother Earth.

A tribal print headband with brown and turquoise accents adorns her forehead as her long brown hair cascades down over her shoulder in two simple braids.  Her makeup is a palette of earth tones such as brown and orange with a swipe of a gold liner under her eyes.  And do I detect a cut crease under the burnt orange eyeshadow?  Hmm...

Around her neck is a turquoise, brown and white beaded necklace with a "metal" medallion hanging from it that showcases a tribal symbol.

Along with a dark brown, faux suede belt, she also wears an eagle printed sash with sky blue fringe around her waist.

On her feet are tie-up moccasins that are just too cool!  (I wish I had a pair; they look so comfortable and soft.) 

And to top it all off is a luxurious, faux suede coat trimmed in white faux fur.  Absolutely fabulous!

When I first saw her, I was blown away by all of the elaborate embellishments and spectacular regard to detail.  The time and care they took in making this doll is so evident... and so greatly appreciated.  Not only is she lovely to look at, but she's also a wonderful interpretation of the Native American woman and the beauty of their culture.  Another gem from the world of Barbie and I'm so glad to have her in my collection.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Summer Shimmer In A Pan

It is described as a "blazing burnt orange with golden shimmer".  I simply refer to it as my own personal "sunshine in a pan".  It's bright, but subtle.  It's shimmery, but not sparkly.  And it's positively stunning.  It's NARS' inimitable Taj Mahal.

I freely admit that when I first got this, I didn't get it.  I swiped some of it on my cheeks and thought, "Ok, now what?"  I guess with all that I had heard about it I was expecting a little more of a "wow factor" and I just wasn't getting it.  But let me tell you... when I contoured my cheeks with some bronzer and then added Taj Mahal straight to my apples... BOOM!  It happened.  I got the warm, glowing, just-came-back-from-vacation look I was waiting for.  Success, baby. 

Like all of NARS' blushes, Taj Mahal is fully pigmented and finely milled.  There's no dust or shimmer cast-off during application and the color is sheer to buildable.

Can you tell that I'm just itching for some more sunshine in my life right about now?  I can't wait until it gets much warmer so I can pull out a cute little sundress, rock some face-engulfing shades and get my mini-vacay on with a dash of Taj on my cheeks.  An exotic, sun drenched trip all for under thirty bucks?  Yes, please and thank you!

NARS Taj Mahal can be found at Sephora and, and retails for $29.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Friday Flashback: Milani's Mai Tai

Anyone remember this beauty?  It is one of my favorite blushes ever and because I adore it so much - of course - it is no longer widely available for purchase.  It's not even listed on the company's website, so I'm assuming it has been discontinued.  Such a lovely shade it is.  Alas, I'm not quite sure why Milani did away with my beloved Mai Tai blush.

Milani had a mineral-based lineup of blushes that came in a variety of soft, neutral-friendly shades.  Not only did the blushes come with a mirror attached to the underside of the main pan, but they also came with a small brush nestled in the bottom of the compact.


Mai Tai is a gorgeous, matte cantaloupe color.  (How unique is that?)  It is not chalky or powdery at all, but rather highly pigmented, soft to the touch and very easy to blend.

I love wearing Mai Tai with a nude lip!  It just sets the right tone for the look and helps tie everything together.  And none of my other blushes even come close to Mai Tai in color, which makes it a standout in my stash.

I had no idea they would discontinue this line.  But isn't that how it usually happens?  Man, I'm so glad I got a chance to grab Mai Tai while I could.  In fact, I serendipitously bought two after being tempted by a sale CVS was having.  Yes, my dears -  I am learning that if you really adore something, especially from the world of makeup, it's better to buy multiples before they quietly put your beloved item out to pasture and you're left wondering, "What in the world happened to...?"

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Spring - Lush Greens

Today is the official start of spring, guys!  Out with the cold and in with the new found warmth of the season.  And with the new season comes the first round of "it" colors.  Heading up the list this go around is GREEN - a color I'm actually cool with and have various shades of in my makeup stash, although I don't often wear it.  So for the sake of staying on trend, let's explore a few options and hues of the shade that seems to be all the buzz right now.

Now I know you already know this one.  Humid is one of MAC's classic eyeshadows and with good reason. 

It is a gorgeous emerald frost with gold pearl that is smooth to the touch and has excellent color payoff.  Rock it in the daytime with a nice purple or smoke it out with a black base underneath for an awesome after hours look.  Either which way, Humid is one mean green.

If the thought of rocking a green lid makes you a little "green around the gills" with apprehension then why not line your eyes with the hue instead?  Maybelline has a gem of a green gel that's worth a look called Forest.

Forest is a dark, creamy green that is from Maybelline's EyeStudio Line.  The gel liner is smooth upon application and delivers opaque coverage with ease.  I have had this one for a little over a year and it has yet to dry out, too.  Can't say that about a lot of drug store gel/cream liners.  Impressive.

Another green liner that may be right up your alley is a silky, fluid offering from CARGO called Khaki.

Khaki is a darkened olive with gold pearl.  This fiercely fabulous eyeliner is fully packed with color and absolutely glides across the skin during application.  LOVE!

(In direct sunlight)

Instead of donning green eyes, maybe you would prefer to sport a green thumb (and index, and middle, and ring, and pinky finger)...

Or perhaps a lime-spotted scarf... or groovy green blouse... or a playful, leaf-print canvas tote?

With so much out there, going green for spring is easy peasy.  It's all a matter of what you want to rock and how you want to rock it.  So what are you waiting for?  'Tis the season and you have officially been given the green-light to go all out and have fun with the current color du jour!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Origins Clear Improvement

I received this small sample of Origins' Clear Improvement last summer, but just started using it two weeks ago out of curiosity.  My skin regimen is pretty faithful in keeping my face bright and clear and I do not have huge pores, however, I have noticed that the pores in my T-zone have become more visible than those on the rest of my face.  Seems to be a pretty common complaint so I wanted to see if this product would have any effect.  And I think I got my answer...

According to the promo card that came with the sample, Clear Improvement is said to be "like a facial in a tube".  Activated charcoal, White China Clay and Lecithin are the ingredients that work harmoniously to draw out, absorb and dissolve pore-clogging impurities to the result of unburdened pores and clearer, healthier looking skin.

The charcoal hued mask is of a nice consistency (not too thick, not too thin) and is virtually fragrance-free.  After following the instructions of opening the pores with a warm rag, the mask spreads easily across the skin and dries down quickly.  Ten minutes is the recommended time allotted before rinsing the product off.

I have to tell you that I honestly saw an improvement the first night I applied the mask.  I applied Clear Improvement to my T-zone only and found that not only was the area as soft and smooth as the rest of my face, but the mask did not leave it looking parched and my pores DID look more refined.  I remember laughing at my reflection in the mirror because I thought I was seeing things or, rather, seeing what I wanted to see.  But, no, my T-zone actually did look and feel slightly "improved".

So is this a miracle product?  No, I wouldn't say that.  It's not going to make your pores magically disappear or forever stop breakouts and flare ups from occurring.  But it does stay true to what it says.  It will aid in keeping your skin clear, thus helping the appearance of said pores and keep other skin marring ailments at bay.  And because its veracity has been established in these areas, I would definitely recommend this to anyone who is looking to up the ante in their quest for assembling a highly effective skincare regimen.

Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask can be found at Macy's, Sephora and, and retails for $16/1.7 fl. oz.; $23/3.4 fl. oz.

Friday, March 15, 2013

A Proper Copper For Spring

The color copper may elicit thoughts of fall because if its burnt orange hue, but I would like to challenge that with a lovely lipstick I recently found.  Instead of a heavy, dark shade of copper, it is rather light and seems to hit all the right seasonal notes for a perfect segue into spring.  And it's a beautiful color to boot.  For your review, I would like to share with you Revlon's Copper Chrome.

Copper Chrome is a creamy pearl from Revlon's Super Lustrous Lipstick line.  It has a moisturizing formula, is fully pigmented and delivers opaque coverage in every pass.  

You already know my philosophy: you can honestly wear any lipstick during any time of the year.  However, I know that there are those who are more particular than others when it comes to wearing certain shades.  The seemingly darker, more dramatic colors are usually reserved for the darker, colder months.  But there's no reason to shy away from this copper.  Not only is it vamp-free, but it's a fetching sun-fire shade that easily transcends any perceived seasonal aesthetic.  A very versatile color, indeed.

Revlon's Super Lustrous Copper Chrome is available at Target and various drug stores, and retails for around $8.99.