Friday, January 29, 2010

Picture Perfect

Let me show you flaws, and I will show you the programs that can get rid of them.

From acne, to clear skin.
From aging woman, to eternal youth.
From size 14 to size 6.

I started my first article about, do women use too much make up and its escalating into my own little research project. It stemmed from cosmetics to (now) our healthy image of our bodies.

Here we teach our children to love and respect themselves.
Then we have girls like Heidi Montag-Pratt telling us that she was a victim to cruel peers.
Here we teach our children to be strong and stand for what we believe and who we are.
Then we have girls saying they are ugly, because they don't look like celebrities.
Here we have airbrushing and photo-shopping and now, we are facing major issue at hand.

Its being talked about more and more because now our idols are becoming victims to senseless photo manipulation. Some are outrageous and some are complacent and quiet. And women aren't the only ones subject to digital modification. Men and children too.

The reason I bring this up is because its bothering me more and more. The more we hide behind acceptable photo manipulation, the more it becomes out of hand. There was a point to removing blemishes from kids faces for school photos and now we are removing Demi Moore's hip. At what point did some idiot say that Demi's hips were too hippy? What message does that send to someone my age or younger!? Its bad to have hips??

My Thoughts:

So you can tell by my tone, I'm a little more fired up that usual. I have to digress from reviewing beauty products to bring this topic up. Not just because I want to stir up controversy, or make you question your morals and ethics. I want to talk about this so you know where I stand on the issue and what I believe.

I believe we are hypocrites. 

Like I said earlier, we tell our children to cherish and love their bodies, to nourish their minds with knowledge, to exercise, eat right and be responsible and respectful and yet, we aren't doing those things and we aren't teaching those lessons through and through.

When a girl like Heidi, who loves a media circus, says she was a victim to bullying or peer pressure and she has 11 procedures to help her self esteem. Who was she helping really? If a person like herself is considered a role model (seriously, people, she's a reality star not Mother Theresa) then we have the wrong kind of morals guiding our decision making.

I won't bash her entirely because she has the right to do what she will to herself, but what I do bash is the logic she had that she wasn't good enough the way she was born. I'm hardly religious but if I was, I would believe in God made me special. There is uniqueness in people, and yes, we have character flaws; we get blemishes and cellulite, thinning hair, what is so wrong with being human and who you are!? What is so wrong with loving the body that you have, respecting yourself for all the times you stood strong and being proud of your ethnicity and the way you were made?

We look at models in magazines and they are not real. There needs to put the equivalent of a cigarette cancer label on all ads and glossy magazine pages to remind all readers that:

What you are viewing is a marketing ploy. 
We use sexual/sensual messages to sell products. 
We sometimes don't even feature the product in the ad. 
We photo shop and air brush models, so they are not who they were before this ad.
We advise you to proceed with caution.

This warning label should extend to all forms of media that are sent to the public, whether its a billboard, magazine cover or an ad online. Because we have to tell people the gosh darn awful truth, no one is ever going to get to perfection. Perfection only exists in math and in the real world, perfection can be the cause of death. 

Eating disorders have destroyed lives of women because they think they aren't pretty enough, thin enough and you know what, when you have images like this:

 or this:

or even this:

We all begin to see the standard is too damn high.

Our quest for beauty should be about what is beautiful in life. Your daughter's first smile, your first kiss, your acceptance into grad school, your debts all paid off...but not these pictures of women.

We need don't need more information about the detrimental effects self image and what is the standard, we have those facts, what we need to be is pro-active. We need to reinforce positive self regard for ourselves. We need to be proud of what our bodies can do. We most importantly need to love ourselves.  

Love yourself like how much you love chocolate. 
Love yourself like how much you love to sleep in on the weekends. 
Love yourself like how much you truly deserve.

If you ever have a chance check out the documentary called America the Beautiful. And these links below.
The Unattainable Beauty and The NEW Heidi


Monday, January 18, 2010

Your pretty!

I'm not sure if its a trend, but don't you feel sometimes we wear too much? know, make up? I took the liberty of writing down my usual routine when it comes to go out in public and its sort of staggering...

Christina's Usual Routine:
  1. Loreal's Pore Minimizer skin re-smoother.
  2. Avon's ANEW face perfecting lotion spf 15.
  3. Primer, I'm finishing up my Smashbox at the moment.
  4. Either mineral or liquid foundation. Mineral: color corrector in green, foundation, then concealer. Or Liquid: mix both NYX pale and Revlon's Colorstay in Ivory, then conceal.
  5. Set face with powder. (Right now its ELF's HD powder, the silica one.)
  6. Contour face.
  7. Eye primer.
  8. Eyeshadows.
  9. Curl Lashes.
  10. Mascara.
  11. Brows, set with gel. (I'm not partial to drawn brows)
  12. Blush.
  13. Gloss.
  14. Phew...I'm done.
So the other day I tried to reduce my stagger list of thing I do to my face to get pretty and it turns out to be a disaster. Mineral concealer can cake and spread, exposing large pores, which I have thanks to my genes. Luminizer does not work well when it doesn't match the skin. And without blush, I looked dead. :/

Then today, I thought of trying another way of reducing the amount of products on my face, but I just gave up. Its probably better that I do a bare face all day. Letting spots and scars heal. (Chocolate is a bad snack, especailly for a week and half straight.) I might work on another video for YT. (Yes, I'm finally making my small steps towards YT.) And I came across a brilliant idea when my hubby told me I looked beautiful today. :) In fact, he likes it when I wear less make up.

So it makes me think. 
Why do we beat our faces? 
Why do we wear make up in the first place? 
Does it help your confidence? 
Do you wear it to attract the opposite sex? 
Do you wear it because its girly?

For me, at first make up was self expression, when I was younger. But now its a way of taking care of myself, like making myself look presentable. You know what i mean? Its like, I'd iron my dress shirt before I went to work. I'd clean off the mud off of my sneakers before I met a girl for a date. I'd brush my teeth so I wouldn't frighten thousands with my hello. But I think a good portion of women who are on YT who talk about make up, do it like a pony show.

Instead of hearing this is me, we see this is my make up. And I believe if you have have good skin, why not celebrate it? Why mask it with senseless foundation? Men prefer woman to be touchable creatures, not the kind that gets pissy when you mess with their hair. Make up is always suppose to enhance, but it can't create a good heart, a wonderful sense of humor, or a witty charm you have on the masses. It can't make you more likable or kind, or goal orientated. It can only do so much.

So if you are a plain bitch, and if you think because your eyes have a sultry smolder, it won't mean that eventually people will see right through you. We will and we do. And if you've got a problematic complexion and you use cosmetics to hide it until your skin is better, people see that too. In fact sometimes the world is so harsh about who we are as individuals, make up can also be a refuge. I speak from experience because I know what its like to be picked on, or talked about, or mocked because I wore make up or had acne. It sucks. It really fricking sucks. But do you want to know what helped me the most?

Learning and teaching myself the purpose of my make up. 

My sister rarely wears foundation because she no longer gives two hoots about what people say about her. Thats bravery in a small but magnificent way. For me, I realized it doesn't matter what you paint yourself with, eventually night will come, you will wash your face away, and who will you be then? The same person? Or someone you don't even recognize?

When I look in the mirror, or when I'm playing with my daughter I am the same person with make up as I am without. And she laughs at me either way. Which feels good, because being who you are is confidence, not what you wear.

Much love and respect,

ALSO: Check out my second youtube video. Its just the PopBeauty Swatches. It was easier to make a mini movie vs. posting them here. :)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

That youtube thing...

I must apologize for being away as things have been more busy than usual. I'm off of a school semester break and back going to school. I was busy taking care of sick family then subsequently, got sick myself. (I still am pretty sick, sneezing, congested and coughing a lung up.) And furthermore I wasn't sure what I'd blog about next. I was really looking forward to doing a review on some Boots items, but I got a skin allergy to one of the products. Which for me is unheard of.

My skin can handle a tooth brush with aspirin bits and I got a rudy red face from something that was a moisturizer?! Anyways, I'm trying to figure out how else I can use it because, I did buy it, and i don't want it to go to waste. That is the practical side of me that sometimes gets in the way of reality. lol

Now I brought up youtube for a reason.
I've tried making a few intro "hello this is me" videos but nothing has really turned out well. My mother schedule is all over the place so being able to film is like running a marathon. I have to be cleaned up, baby has to be either napping or playing happily, and no one else should be in the house (its stage fright for me for them to walk in and ask, why are you talking to a camera?).
Also I don't want to jump on the youtube make-up guru band-wagon. It sounds incredibly harsh but its true. Suddenly out of the woodwork comes flocks of new people who know about make up, skin and fashion and for me, I feel two ways: You are just trying to become a you-tube partner with your haul videos alone or you are really passionate about it...and damn good at what you can do.

I've followed a good amount of ladies and gents and let me tell you, I can sniff out a fake fast.

If they have an attitude or they are 17. I will stray away from you.
If they can't talk on camera, like all they can do is ooh and aahhh a color, I'll not watch you either.
And finally, if all they do is act retarded by thinking they are funny, I'm booking it with some g-force from you.

I want to educated, not be bragged to about what MAC things they got "this" time. I want to know about good products for many people, not just for yourself. So eventually I'll stop the jitters, find some time and post an intro video of some sort.

I have an idea of what the content will be, primarily, like this blog. A review zone. Like nothing but comparing, reviewing, analyzing, explaining whats in the product. Like giving people the dirt, not just the glam of products. I want to be as real as I can be for people.

Anyways, thats all for now
I want to get scrubbed up and take more medicines. :D

Oh! I was wondering what sort of camera and editing software I should use. I tried that movie maker and I'm not getting it. lol


P.S. I went and did it.
Here is my first youtube video. lol
hello. :)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

double liner effect :D

I don't want to be all pugnacious and say its my idea ...but in a way... I really haven't seen too many guru's pulling this one off. (...let it go Christina, and get to the talking!) The last 4 days I've been dabbling with the usual girly stuff and I've come up with a few looks for every-day glasses wearers (such as my self) can do.

This one is similar to lining the lower lash line with a pop of color, but instead using it half way into the eye. It adds more emphasis and if you are near sided ( like me) lining your eye all the way to the duct (unless its not done super thin) will make your eyes shrink dramatically. I find lining the last half of my outer lash line, (either top or top and bottom) keeps my eyes open and as large as my coke bottle thick lenses will let me. (I have bad eyes. One day they shall get corrected! day.)

Duo-Liner Effect:

First, I used an angled eye brush for this. I reused the brush for both colors and I wet both the shadow colors before applying. Now, line your eye half way to the middle of your iris. (keep looking forward into the mirror) Use what ever color you want. Something bold, something black, something soft, something smoky.

Then, wing out the first color closest to your eye. (I did two different wings, a cat eye and an extended line. I'm not going out of the house so slightly off make up is fine for today. lol The picture at the top is an extended line.)

With the same angled liner brush. (I could never pull this off with a square brush, but if you can, got for it.) clean it, wet the second shadow, then start at the inner corner and go right along top of the first color. Stopping just short of the wing. If you can meet the colors, do so.

Now, as I said earlier, lining with a relatively
noticeable thick line starting before
where your iris naturally sits on your eye
will make your eyes EVEN smaller for
near-sided glasses wearers.
However, you can use medium toned colors
(no Blacks, Charcoals, Forests Greens, Navys)
like Copper and bring that color to your inner eye.
It won't be as harsh as black would be. :)

As long as you line your eyes thinly
to the middle of your iris and slowly
thicken out your line towards the
end of your lash line, you will
have beautifully lined eyes. :)

You can tight line you upper and lower water line if you choose. (Another alternative to lining your eyes.) In my case, I had little time to get ready today. I finished with curling my lashes and used Blue Mascara from VS Beauty Rush on my top and bottom lashes.

How it looks with open eyes and no glasses. Excuse the stoner expression. Im hungys. :(

With closed eyes. I did prime my eyes and use a matte flesh tone eyeshadow before lining my eyes.

All together now! I used SmashBox Primer, mineral corrector, foundation and concealer, bronzer, blush and gloss aside from everything else. Also notice the shower head. lol

Times to go eats :3
Take care,

Monday, January 4, 2010

PopBeauty Palettes

Greetings, my readers. :) Today I have a review on the PopBeauty Palettes that you can get at Victoria Secrets, ULTA or their site PopBeauty. I'd highly recommend buying them at VS because I paid full price for the zebra print for my sister around Christmas Time. I came back the next day and it was for 17 bucks. :|

The gold palette is called the 24K Gold Goddess Clutch palette, and the Silver is their original Goddess Clutch palette. They go for 32.00 each. Finally the zebra print is their Day to Play Goddess Clutch palette, and that currently retails for 36.00 by itself. I got them (the 3 of them) for 37 dollars because VS was having a sale on cosmetics.

Onto the review!

24K Gold Goddess Clutch Palette:

I bought a second one of these for my mother, because she wanted some make up to wear on special occasions. She hasn't wore it in a very long time and she keeps thinking she can use the old stuff she has. Esh. So I found this palette and got it for her. :D And it turns out, I sort of got envious of it and got myself one too. (Tisk tisk, Christina!) Alas, I love this palette mucho. The shadows are all shimmery and pretty, not glittery and too trendy. My mom especially loves the wearable nature of this product. And the green eyeshadow, third up on the left side, is the reason I was wowed in the very first place. Turquoise and sea greens are some of her favorite colors that look really nice on her. :)

As for the colors on the left side of the palette, the top two colors are blush and highlight and the bottom is a giant lip color. These pictures were taken without flash in natural daylight and are as truthful as swatches as I can get. :) This palette is great for many skin tones because of the natural and neutral eyeshadow shades. My mom is warm dark brunette brown eyed lady. In the summer she tans, in the summer I roast like a duck. My mom looks great is browns, blues, even cranberry reds. Me on the other hand, I am copy paper white, and blond with blue eyes. Yet this palette suits us both incredibly well. :)

Eyeshadow colors from the left to right, starting from the top:

Left Side: 
  • a pearl white
  • soft sea foam green
  • a champagne color
  • a pewter color
Right Side:
  • a pale medium gold color
  • a yellow-gold
  • a copper gold
  • soft dark brown

Interesting note I must point out: 
You can remove the make up
contents out of these clutches.
Then they transform into clutches
for your everyday life! How cool is that?

Silver Goddess Clutch Palette:

This palette has been a fun one to try. Its got more wines, blues and pinks that I'd ever expect. And I'm a little nervous to bust out the fuchsia on the 3rd right, but again, like its 24k cousin, the colors blend well, hold up and look pretty, never gaudy. There are two blushers on the left, and at the very top, a lip color too.
The colors from top to bottom, from left to right:

Left Side:
  • medium brown
  • dark silver
  • sangria/burgundy
  • charcoal gray w/small blue glitter
Right Side:
  • a light opalescent taupe/silver color
  • the "fuchsia", is more of a cool rose color
  • a light brown
  • a soft pink
As I said earlier these are shimmery shades, they have a pearl finish to them. Which the young and old can wear. They are pretty without being too hunky chunky glittery. :)

Day to Play Goddess Clutch Palette:

You get 18 shadows and a mirror in this palette. At first I was just amazed at all the pretty colors, but then I realized the pans for the shadows are too narrow and long. I own a majority of large eyeshadow brushes, so if you are like me and you have this palette you may find it difficult to use. :( And trying to use them wet swatch them didn't work out so well with a brush but by finger tip, they did a good job. These colors are highly pigmented, some are shimmery and some are matte.

Starting from the top of the palette, then from left to right:
**There are duplicate colors in this palette that can be found in both Goddess 24k and Silver clutch.

Left Side:
  • a soft black
  • a matte middle gray
  • a bright blue
  • a dark forest green
  • an army green
  • a kelly green
  • a darker but brighter blue
  • a turquoise blue
  • a copper color
  • a rust colored shadow
  • a fuchsia, a brighter pink than in the silver palette
  • a warm amethyst color
Right Side:
  • a cool dark brown
  • a cool medium brown
  • a warm misty purple
  • a champagne color
  • a warm yet soft yellow
  • a sea foam color

If you wanted something that had a little bit of diversity but you didn't want to own large full sized wild colors, I'd recommend the Day to Play Palette. It has versatility, spunk and a beautiful range of wicked looking colors. The only down side is the pans are long and narrow, which not every brush can fit into without mixing into other neighboring colors. If you are a traveler or you like to carry a multifunctional palette, then these 24K Gold Goddess Clutch or the Silver Goddess Clutch palettes may be for you. They don't organize themselves according to skin tone, so if you want neutral but pretty colors, then the 24k Gold palette is up your alley. If you want bold, dramatic, sensual colors, the Silver Goddess palette is just for you. PopBeauty has a 3rd palette, called the Rock and Roll Clutch, and that looks pretty swanky, if I do say so myself, and I do. :p Overall, you are buying lovely pearly shadows, that have a breathtaking effect on your skin. Image a candle light effect, every day. :)

Take care,

Friday, January 1, 2010

a new year, new beginnings...

I wanted to wish my readers a wonderful new year. 2009 was mixed emotions for me and I am looking forward to a brighter future for myself and my family. I can't wait to get back to reviews (once the hangover has subsided) and giving you my two cents.

I'm visiting friends and tomorrow I will be able to give a more accurate review of the Sonia Kashuk travel brush set.

Also, some things to come: a review on the ELF brush shampoo, pop beauty palletes, VS beauty rush and their VS Makeup. I also want to start some topics on figuring out skins undertones, as well as cordinating eye color and hair color for cosmetics and fashion.

And even price point make up.

So yeah, big plans. I really look forward to writing these articles up.
Take care,

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

So I went shopping...

*cue the image of barbie walking and talking with her friends at the mall...when suddenly they saw...CLEARANCE.*

Ever have that moment in your life? Where you are walking along and see some cool things and you are like "meh, neh., ehh..." but then by happenstance, as you look up at the next isle, a big bright red and white sign in bold letters screams at you. Like HEY I'M CHEAP OVER HERE! And you are not sure how or why, but know you are drawn to it, because you feel the world move beneath you, you are so drawn to it, like moths to a flame. It burns so bright, so clear, you are consumed with this want, no---dare i say--- need to see what it is, that is, on clearance.

Just me? Alrighty then, no surprise I went shopping (had to get some things for the baby) and I hit my usual spot, Target and low and behold I got me 3 things.

ELF (I can hear the groans everywhere. More ELF? You just did THREE blogs worth of ELF, and you still go for more??? What is wrong with you? To my defense, I am a sucker for sales. :D)

I got their Holiday Flavored Glossy (tube) Set. And boy oh boy, if you like Coffee, go find it in your 50% off holiday stocking stuffers isle because their bronze gloss tastes just like it. Its called Hot Cocoa but, my sister and I both agree, it feeds the inner coffee consumers in us. :D The Red gloss is called Candy Cane, and it has the same taste as the minty glosses from their Studio Line. The White one I haven't tried yet, but I love the texture and taste of these glosses so I'm a verrrry happy camper. :)

And yes, half off of 3 dollars, makes me also happy too. lol

I also found the Sonia Kashuk Purse Essentials 5 Brush set.

You don't get a eyebrow comb or sponge applicatiors. You get 5 soft brushes. One is a wide but thin face/blush/bronzer/multi-purpose brush, the other 4 are a Crease Brush, Angled Brush, a Small Eyeshadow Brush and finally a Smudge Brush. It was orignally 10 dollars, that I got for 6.90. Now you are probably thinking, well are the brushes any good? Are they soft? Are they worth it?

I haven't tried them out but I can tell you they are soft, they are stiff for packing and working with eye shadows, they are small but I have small palms so they fit nicely in my hand. The only downside is the Angled Brush isn't as thin as the ELF Angled Brush, so we shall see how well it holds up when I use them. I also think if you are traveler, whose probably very tired of getting stuck with travel kits that come with too much stuff you sort of don't need and not enough of the things you do need, then I would recommend this Sonia Kashuk Purse Essentials. It also comes in a silver case that comes with a mirror and designated pockets for the brushes. So yeah, another really good investment at a really good price. :) Cha-ching!

Finally, my ultimate splurge was the Pixi by Petra Softly Smoky Eyes. Its not in the light green packaging, but in a navy blue. It comes with 12 shadows and the pigmentation is out of this world. One swatch and I just about wanted to wash my face and go play. lol :) I am so glad I found this palette. The only down side is the magnets aren't strong enough to keep the palette closed, so I have to put another palette on top of it to keep it from getting ruined. Also for Pixi by Petra cosmetics, it came as a real deal steal. 7 dollars. Most of her cosmetics (like on her site, Pixi Beauty or at Target sell for in the tens, twenties, even thirty dollar range.)

Note: Unfortunately, I had the flash on for these pictures, because it was night time by the time I got home and frankly, they would have looked weird if I had done some other camera setting. So take notice of how light these colors appear, but I assure you the flash has just washed them out a little. The black (at the first left) is a true matte black. The next is a silver with sparkle, the brown is a darker more rustic cool toned brown. The purple is more like Raspberry Truffle, or a burgundy brown for those that don't have ELF Studio single shadows. 
At the second left, The first is a warm mid-tone brown, the next is a red-copper, the third is a cool toned charcoal (it doesn't have blue in it, but its cooler compared to the Silver.) and the forth is a warm light brown.

At the 3rd left, these I would classify as your everyday neutrals. There is another brown shade, a neutral golden brown, a taupe and finally a creme colored shadow.

Alright that is it for now,
Take care