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Thursday, May 31, 2007

My New "TOYS"


I recently bought MAC's "Chrome Yellow", "Parfait", and Makeup Forever (MUFE)'s eyeshadow #26 (fushia).

I have yet to try them all out, and when I do, I will take pics and post em, so far I LOVE the YELLOW and PINK because they are highly pigmented so they come on nice and bright the way I want them to. Why yellow and pink? Well I love yellow, it's my favorite color, and I actually have tons of yellow shirts that would go with it, and pink too. So we'll see how good they come out.

The pink one I fell in love with because it's the EXACT pink I have been looking for and couldn't find. I tried MAC's "Sushi Flower" and didn't like it because it had red tones in it. I wanted PURE PINK, and this was it!

The total for everything was about $50, which is a lot if you ask me...simply because anything over $10 for an eyeshadow is a little steep, especially considering how often I will actually wear yellow and/or pink. But hey, those were the colors I was looking for, so I guess it's worth it. Let's hope it looks okay!

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Sickly sick...


Sorry I have been unable to post as much as I want to, I just came back from Washington and brought back a cold with me, so gimme a couple days to recuperate and I shall be back on my feet!

Sucks to be sick on your birthday!

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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Reader Questions:


To answer some of my reader questions, I will post them here, you gals have really great questions! Keep them coming!

Q: Hey Nessa! I bought the NXY loose pigment pearl eyeshadows. I bought all 24 colors new on ebay for a really good deal. They came in today and I know this might sound silly...but how do you use them??? I was playing with it and got the powder all over my hands and face. I LOVE the colors though! But what type of brush and how do you properly apply it and get it out of the bottle?

Jenn =)

A: Jenn, I am really glad you liked the colors, they have really awesome pigments that complement any look. I must admit, they do get messy since they are loose powders in tiny, tiny bottles! What I do is:

1. I shake the bottle upside down so that some of the powder goes into the cap, then when you open it, I get a tiny brush similar to the one below and gently scoop up a small amount, then apply it to my eyelids. Another thing I do as well when working with more than one pigment, is that I pour each color on a piece of paper (you do not want to use paper towel or tissue, because it absorbs the powder almost like a sifter, and also because it's harder to pour any excess powder back INTO the bottle).


Q: heyy vanessa..well i`ve loved all the tips you`ve given soo far its really helped..i was wondering could you make a tutorial on applying eyeliner the right way because for some reason everytime i do it, it never comes out the way i want it to.thanks

<3 chrysee

A: Thanks Chrysee! As I write this, I already have eyeliner on, so tomorrow, hopefully I can take some pics on "how-to" apply eyeliner, but for now, I can write steps on how-to correctly apply eyeliner.

If you have small set eyes, you want to apply THIN eyeliner, as thick eyeliner can make your eyes appear smaller. If you have wide, large eyes, then feel free to be as playful as you want to be. Close your eye, with one hand (usually the hand you are not dominant in), pull to the side the corner of your eye lid, so that you are holding your eye down, smoothed with no crease or wrinkles, and with your other hand apply your eyeliner starting from the INNER corner of your eye, to the OUTER in a gentle sweep, side-to-side motion; as STEADY as you can. For the "wing" effect (like Amy Winehouse), or how I do my eyeliner, go PAST the natural corner of your lid, and slightly brush up. Then repeat with the other eye. [see below]

To fix mistakes: Take a Q-tip and dab with water or makeup remover and gently clean up the mistake, for best results, wait for the eyeliner to fully DRY before cleaning any mistakes, as wet eyeliner can cause a bigger mistake and smudges. You can also try using a makeup eraser pen like Sephora's $12)

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Saturday, May 26, 2007

Dark, dark circles


Q. I have dark under-eye circles. Is there any way to get rid of them?

A: Option 1. Use a proper concealer. Test out the best colors at a department store counter or at Sephora. Choose concealer that's a shade lighter than your foundation. And if your circles are very dark, go 2 shades lighter. You might be choosing a concealer that's too light if you are getting a 'raccoon look.'

Great concealers include:

Revlon Makeup Compact Concealer with SPF 20 ($10.99)
, I use "nude beige". What I love about this sleek compact is that it's creamy and glides on easily, I use a sponge wedge and dab it all over my under eye and you will see a big difference!

Laura Mercier's "Secret Camoflauge"
, allows you to create you to custom blend your own shade, one color to match the skin's undertone, and the other to match the skin's color depth. ($28)

Estee Lauder's Smoothing Skin Concealer ($19.50)
, contains Vitamin E, helps smooth away fine lines, wrinkles, and can get rid of puffiness.

Cover Girl Smoothers Concealer ($5-$6)
, the only thing I DON'T like about "lipstick style" concealers is that after awhile they break off from it's base and makes it hard to use after that.

I find it works best to apply stick concealers with your finger dabbing a few dots under your eyes for that sole reason, but use your fingers AND a sponge to apply cream concealers.

Option 2: Invest in a vitamin K-based eye product Eye creams such as Vita-K Solution gel.

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Follow-up forum on my previous blog


I found this forum in relation to my previous blog, I guess some people do find pleasure in drugstore brands as well...CLICK HERE

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Sheila this one is for you!


Sup nessa. I tried the Telescopic mascara... all I have to say is THANK YOU! I love it! I haven't really tried NYX shadows. I don't know, I guess I'm wary of trying something that is not MAC and I find it harder to believe something that is $3 is worth a buy... haha... but you're changing my mind more and more by reading your blog, because your shadow jobs look great. Is the NYX pigment just as strong strong as MAC?

A: I am glad you love the mascara! It's one of my favorites along with the 'Panoramic Curl' (I tend to switch depending on my mood haha). Well I always say, "Better isn't always best". I love MAC, I honestly do, they have been the epitomy of makeup since before I was even allowed to wear makeup, haha; and I actually have a few of their eyeshadows. I suggested NYX because they are actually really great eyeshadows for people who are on a budget. For ONE MAC eyeshadow at $14.50, you can get almost FIVE NYX eyeshadows! The pigments of a NYX are almost the same as MAC if not the same. I noticed that I use the same number of "swipes" on my applicator with both MAC and NYX. So if you like, you can definitely BUY ONE and see how you like it, I personally like the NYX loose pigments more than the eyeshadows because they deliver a nice shimmery boost of color EXACTLY like MAC's, so try those. [pictured below]. Like I mentioned before, my eyeshadows are MIXED, so one color could be L'Oreal, one could be MAC, one could be Flirt Cosmetics, or one could be NYC. I never use the same brands of eyeshadow for one look, not as a rule, but I just noticed I never do.

It's best to play with different brands of makeup to achieve different looks, if you stay with one brand, you are limited to how many different looks you can do. I like ALL brands of eyeshadow, Sephora brand eyeshadows work well too ($10), and I love the bright colors L'oreal has.

For a "base eyeshadow" (or what they call a highlighting shadow), there isn't much sense to spend $15 for it when it ends up being covered by your actual eyeshadow, which is why I absolutely cannot live without Revlon's "White Whisper" ($7) and Flirt's "Limelight" ($10) which comes in a super cute compact with a mirror. (Available at Kohl's).

These are some of the items I recently purchased to add to my growing collection of what my mom likes to call "junk" (aka "makeup"):

I also bought a "kabuki brush" [picture to the very left], this is great for getting more control of applying powder or brushing off excess shadows on your cheeks. And of course my bf Jon has to make a cameo!

Again, these are the ones you want to get, I believe they are $2.99 each and they are equivalent to MAC's Pigments in my opinion.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Makeup and Train Cases


Q: Where can I get a really great makeup case? I have all this makeup and always run out of room to store and organize it.

A: Makeup cases are ideal for people who travel a lot (like me), or if you do your own makeup for photoshoots, or just like to have one. I actually like a lot of the makeup cases, most of them even have removable dividers so you can customize and organize it any way you want; but when you choose one, think practically and not solely style. Obviously if you have a couple eyeshadows and 3 tubes of lipstick, you should just get a nice makeup bag and not a box! Also, let me tell you the difference from the expensive cases (MAC and Sephora of course), as well as the others.

MAC and Sephora cases are much more expensive, not because of the brand itself, but because they have heat-protected, insulated cases. What the heck does that mean? That means if you leave your makeup box under the sun, in your car, or in the oven, that it's not going to melt your makeup and all of it's glorified contents. (I haven't tried this so don't ask me if it really works haha).

Sephora Midnight Train Case ($90). Also comes in silver, and a shoulder strap.

Want a SMALLER one? ($35)

Wanna splurge? MAC ($225)

Caboodles actually have some decent ones, as well as bringing you back to the feeling when you were 6 years old and owned one. :) ($19.99 at Target) has a nice cheap one for $29.95: CLICK HERE

And they have the train case with removable wheels for $79.95:

I bought mine at they have a wide selection of makeup boxes and train cases. For the serious makeup artist, the rollaway traincases are awesome since you can just pull it everywhere.

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Beauty picks of the day!


Tarte cosmetics has this dry oil shimmer spray, it apparently doesn't have a greasy feel like other body shimmers, so it doesn't leave you sticky and perfect for that summer glow! It contains apricot and avocado moisturizing oils with a wonderful coconut smell. ($28)

On a budget? Try these loose shimmer powder with a built-in brush ($7) from

I also liked TimeBalms Concealer ($16) because it comes in a nice pot big enough so you can use your fingers for application, or the sponge it comes with! I like using my fingers AND a sponge when I apply concealer, fingers to get every area, and the sponge to mattify the finish.

For a WILD variety of fake eyelashes: CLICK HERE

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Eyeshadow Visual #2


This one isn't so much step by step as eyeshadow visual # 1 it's pretty much the same steps, just different shades. The only thing I changed, was that I did NOT do the "gradient effect" this time, even though from these pics they look like it, but I just applied the shimmery shade all over the lower part of my lid (slightly above the crease), it actually was a very "natural looking" look because in person or in the light, it looks like a nice shimmery brown, very neutral tones; perfect for everyday wear.

I used Milani eyeshadows in "Earthly Delights":

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Where can I get NYX eyeshadows?


I love the NYX product line! If you do not have this in your state, you can order them online here on their website:

Or here:

They have single eyeshadows (see above), as well as trio eyeshadows ($5.60 on

If you want to go for a silky, metallic finish, you can try the CHROME series ($5):

For PEARL loose powdered eyeshadow ($7):

Glitter eyeliner to sparkle ($4):

Or even a glitter palette ($7):

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I have honestly received A LOT of positive feedback from this blog, and I am really happy to hear that you all enjoy reading my entries and can learn a few things and try them out yourselves. I wanted to do something like this for a long time because I too, love makeup, but had trouble getting reviews on products I was interested in, or saw a lot of great looks on people, but never knew how to achieve it, or some wouldn't say because it was a "beauty secret". I would get so flustered spending lots of money and having products not work for me, and then- not being able to return some of them was even more annoying.

But this blog is MORE than just makeup, it's to make you gals feel good about yourselves and achieve confidence that you are beautiful no matter what. I am in no way condoning that OUTSIDE looks overcomes who you are on the INSIDE. I think there are a lot of people who may be HOT on the outside, but when you get to know them you'll see that their personality is a bit shallow, yet you look at average looking people, and they have a heart of gold. I want the outside, to match the inside. And everyone has potential to be something great. Again, these are just tips and how-to's, what works for me may not work for you and vice versa, so if you tried something that i've mentioned, and don't like it- don't be mad please! haha. But if YOU DO like something you are currently using, please share it with me so that I can post it on here.

Anyways, I received this WONDERFUL comment from such a great person who sounds like she has such an amazing heart:

I just wanted to say thank you. I'm sure just like everyone else we all have our busy schedule and I really appreciate someone like you who gives a bit of their time. This is really a lot of help for us girls, especially with me. I love makeup and fixing myself up, but i'm totally lost on what stuff to use and how to use them. Hopefully, you keep this up.

To whoever you are, thank you for your kind words, it's people like you, who are such an inspiration to me and others. Us gals can relate how busy our lives can be, and how we rush to get to school and work, with little time to get ready and look glam. I am hoping that I can help other gals who are in the same situation who kind of don't know where to start and what products might be good for them.

So keep on reading! My next posts will be another eyeshadow visual and makeup cases/boxes!

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Monday, May 21, 2007

Beauty tools: Eyebrow razor


I tried this eyebrow shaper from Target for $7. I think the brand is called "TRIM", I was skeptical at first, but thought id try it out since it also had a cute carrying case; and I honestly fell in love with it!

It's a lot faster than plucking, and less painful than wax, threading, or shaving (the plastic ones with the blades). And what I liked about it, was that it feels like a pen, so it gives you more control in shaping your eyebrows and it's so quick and easy. Even comes with a cap! (It's battery operated by ONE AAA battery). It's also good for shaving mustaches of jealous girls. ;)

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One satisfied reader!


Special thanks to the beautiful Miss Christiana...she went out and bought some of the products I suggested on this blog and tried them out and was happy with the results! She tried the heated eyelash curler, and she has a photo of her humongous eyelashes that really open her eyes! Check it out here: her blog

NYX Eyeshadows are really great because one stroke is already a lot of color, and they come in a variety of great, complementing shades. Other eyeshadows you have to cake it on to get the right amount of color you want. Eyeshadow palettes are also great to keep in your purse, in case you need to dash out to a dinner, or a party after work, you can switch up your colors with ease! Some palettes even have a blush and lipgloss combo.

Eyeshadow Palette by Urban Decay ($34)

Laura Geller's "Face Folio" comes with pressed powder, concealer, mascara, eyeshadows, blushes, and more!($48)

Another palette great for the HOME is Sephora's Blockbuster Palette ($36):

My favorite is the palette from SUGAR Cosmetics, it folds!

On a budget? Try Sephora's palette, only $6!


If you don't want to carry a big 'ol palette in your purse, try these compact-sized eyeshadows by Pop Beauty called "Eye Cake", CLICK HERE

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Patchy, itchy dry spots?


If you have dry patchy spots on your face (or anywhere on your body), use a couple dabs of Vaseline and apply directly on the dry spot right before you go to bed, and when you wake up, you'll be surprised how soft, smooth, and supple your skin is!

Dry spots occur if you wash your face or brush your teeth and don't dry your face completely, causing the water to remain on your skin and drying it out. It can also occur when you are sick and blow your nose too much (that's why your nose get red and starts to hurt). Also, if you have dry lips and have that lip skin on there, apply vaseline and brush your lips with your toothbrush to get rid of that extra peeling skin, then reapply Vaseline to heal your lips.

DO NOT use lotion, as lotions tend to have a watery base, or a really oily base. That's why when you have dry hands and you put lotion on, have you ever noticed in 5 minutes it's dry again? Those are water based lotions (like Bath & Body works), they have great smelling lotions, but they dry so fast, and you end up using the whole bottle in one hour since you keep having to re-apply. Oil based lotions tend to be really greasy, and if you put that on your face you will get pimples, and with the water based, you make your dry spot drier.

So Vaseline is the way to go!

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Bedazzled Jewels


It's always fun to do "fairytale" makeup, or artsy makeup...when I do photoshoots (I did one today), I thought id add a little pizazz and add some jewels around my eye. It's great for proms, clubbin', or parties whenever you want to feel glam. Obviously people will look at you weird if you just wear it to the grocery (like the lady at the McDonalds drive-thru, she probably thought I was from a different planet lol.)

You can get these small studs for like $3 a pop at like Claire's or Michael's craft store.

I used "demi pixies" eyelashes, you can get 'em at Sally's Beauty Supply Store (see below how to apply eyelashes). And for my lips, I used NYX Lipgloss in "Bubble Gum".

To apply eyelashes:

Use lash adhesive and put A DROP of the adhesive on a piece of paper or what I use is the packaging of the eyelashes, then get a toothpick or the end of those dental floss sticks, and dip it into the glue and string it along the false eyelash rim, blow on the eyelash until the glue becomes tacky (meaning it's no longer wet), and then get a tweezer to hold the outer end of the eyelash (the side towards the end), and apply it your eye; then using your other hand, gently stick the other side to your lash line and press firmly.

Comb through with an eyelash comb and apply another coat of mascara so that it blends in with your natural eyelashes. Then cover the band with black eyeliner and voila!

Here is an old pic of my makeup box, and that's just the first tray of eyeshadows! If you look closely, it has my name on it! :)

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What eye curler works best?


I personally like the heated eyelash curlers, like curling irons that curl your hair, they curl your eyelashes and help them stay curled for hours. It doesn't get hot, just warm, so fear not! If you use the old-fashion traditional clamping eyelash curler, heat it up a bit with a blowdryer so that it is warm. (see "how-to" below) Also, replace curler pads every 2 months.

Again, im trying to get the best deals on stuff for you gals to purchase, my whole point of this blog is to show you how you can still achieve the look you want without burning your wallet. So I will have budget deals, and splurges, so you can choose what works for you, I know there are times we don't mind spending a bit more on certain items, but if there is another product that does the same job, for cheap- then I am going with that one!

This eyelash curler from Shu Uemura ($18) is almost like the one you are used to, except it is designed so that your vision isn't obstructed as well as curl lashes UP, if you notice on the old ones, you gotta hold it down, hence bringing your lashes down rather than its full curling potential.

They have a heated eyelash curler at Wal-Mart for like $9, I don't remember the brand, but it's fairly cheap.

Or if you want to splurge, you can buy this one at Sephora, $25: CLICK HERE

This one is perfect for you gals on the go! Sephora's eyelash curler and comb duo, $5.

Here's How:

1. Eyelash curlers work best on clean eyelashes. Make sure eyelashes are free of mascara. If necessary, use eye makeup remover to remove old mascara.
2. With your blowdryer on low heat, blow air on the curler for no more than 5 seconds. Touch the metal. If it's hot, let it cool for a few seconds. You don't want to burn your eyelid.
3. Open the curler, clamp lashes near the roots. Hold for 10-30 seconds. Never curl lashes after you apply mascara -- as the mascara dries, lashes can stick to the curler & be torn from the roots. Don't bother curling bottom lashes.
4. Repeat on the other eye.

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Saturday, May 19, 2007

Acne products


Acne products simply do not work for me. I have tried everything from clearasil to ProActiv, and no results, AND I am broke!

Like I mentioned earlier, I am not acne prone, but have this weird OCD that I WILL get acne, hence I've tried to prevent it or use these useless products to get rid of ONE pimple!

I always looked at the ingredients of acne products, and most of them have 2 main ingredients: salycic acid and benzoyl peroxide.

It's very important to know the difference between the two, benzoyl peroxide is much more concentrated and is usually designed to help treat moderate or severe acne, and salycic acid is for more milder cases of acne.

However, MOST acne products have only 0.5% to 2% salycic acid, which basically means, it's weak and therefore, your pimple is STILL there.

I stumbled upon "Zapzyt" ( a few years ago at Walgreens, the presentation or appearance of the box is a bit un-appealing and you probably wouldn't think TWICE before even picking it up off the shelf, especially because people tend to buy brands instead of no-namers. (Come on would you buy Jordache's over Puma's???)

But look closely to the box, and what does it say???? That's right kids, 10% benzoyl peroxide! Whenever I get a pimple that suddenly appeared, I dab a bit of this miracle on my face, dries it out, and it's gone!

Another product I use sometimes is Dickinson's Witch Hazel Astringent, it's been around for years as an herbal remedy, and makes a great toner before bedtime. Simply take a cotton ball and dab a bit of this juice and apply all over your face. You actually feel clean and refreshed! Then follow with a light moisturizer.

P.S. I actually like blogspot a lot, it seems just a tad bit cooler than Xanga...

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Eyeshadow Lesson (Visual)


Here are some step-by-step pictures of some creative ways you can play with applying eyeshadow, as well as some before/after pics:

Me WITHOUT A DROP OF MAKEUP (I know scary huh!?? Thank God for makeup! haha)

Me AFTER putting Laura Geller's Spackle Face Primer and Revlon's Skinlights in Buff/Chamoise.

Apply light eyeshadow base. I chose Revlon's "White Whisper" and blended it with limelight.

Starting from the middle of your lid, sweep your brush to the outer corner of the lid, and blend.

To achieve this:

If you feel like getting more creative, make your eyes stand out by adding some bold bright colors, in this example I used MAC's "Creme de Violet" and L'oreal's Teal.

Start by making 'swatches' of each color side by side, blending it with each other little by little.

Line your lashline with black liquid eyeliner (I used Revlon's "Blackest Black").

See the BIG difference makeup makes? My eye with makeup looks so much more wider and brighter!

Line bottom lashes with the same colors using a smudge brush.

Almost finished!

Lastly, for eyebrows, shade in your eyebrows with an eyeshadow or eyebrow powder one shade lighter than your natural hair color, using a SMALL BRUSH and follow the natural arch of your eyebrows. DRAWN IN eyebrows are tacky and make you look like a clown. Spray a little hairspray on your eyebrow brush to keep those little flyaway hairs tame! Comb in one direction towards your ear.

Finally, the finished product!

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