Category Archives: NARS

try it : pencil me in …

My favourite kind of packaging for any makeup product is a pencil. Whether it looks like your standard lead pencil, thick like a chunky pencil crayon, or feels more like a Sharpie in your hand, I find stick makeup portable, user friendly, and the ultimate choice for easy touch-ups. And with all this hype about Adult Colouring books and colouring for relaxation … what better canvas to colour with than your beautiful face??

pencil-2

Here’s a list of my current obsessions …

Bobbi Brown Retouching Face Pencil in Illuminate : Bobbi Brown is all about easy, natural makeup, so it’s no real surprise that she has introduced a great pencil foundation/concealer for on-the-go touch-ups.  In addition to a variety of shades, she also has one for illuminating the skin … I think this is a great choice for those who want to jump on the strobing trend but require the most fool-proof way to do it. The Illuminate colour isn’t your typical pearly, super shimmery white hue, but rather has a slight soft golden tone to it, which I find the most flattering for a spectrum of skintones. The product is creamy enough to blend but still firm enough to lay down a nice layer of coverage. They also come with a sharpener making your life that.much.easier.

Clinique Chubby In the Nude Foundation Stick : Again, I’m not very secretive about how much I love Clinique’s Chubby Stick Highlight and Contour products; so when they introduced the new Chubby Stick foundations, I was in line already to be on board that train. With 8 shades, the formulation is sheer to moderate coverage, so you can layer it on when you need a little more help in the “looking well-rested and healthy” department or spot treat on the days you’re near flawless! I find the creamiest of most pencil or stick foundations. It’s also a twist up which means you never have to sharpen!

Charlotte Tilbury Colour Chameleon in Amber Haze : Even your smokey eyeshadows can be applied in pencils. Charlotte Tilbury’s pencils are rich in colour with just the right amount of shimmer. Plus, she has done all the guess work for you, offering colours based on your eye colour AND providing a shade made for day and another for night.  It’s enough to wear each colour on their own thanks to the quality of pigment, but don’t be afraid to mix and match either. I adore Amber Haze, but I also have Golden Quartz and Dark Pearl!

Pencil1

NudeStix Cheek/Lip Pencil Duals : The reason these are a no brainer is the fact that you can cover both lips and cheeks, but also, you can get two colours in one pencil. This is the perfect example of staying on top of touch-ups without the fuss. Nudestix also come in a handy tin with a mirrored lid and a sharpener made for the size of their pencils. The colours layer on sheer, so you can build to your desired intensity – going light during the day and then adding more colour and layers when the clock hits 5.

NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencils : This is a love affair that has gone on and on for years. When any client asks me for a statement red or bold lip I choose from three of NARS finest Velvet Matte Lip Pencils : Cruella, Red Square, or Pop Life. And then there is Damned … Never Say Never … and Sex Machine … I find these give the right amount of slip over the lips but no budge. A staple in my bridal makeup kit … but also my personal one too!

Bite Beauty High Pigment Pencil : Lately I’ve been Instagramming their Amuse Bouche line because it just came out, but I became a fan of Bite when I started dating their High Pigment Lip Pencil line. I love this brand when I wear brighter or softer shades. It’s creamy colour that isn’t matte, but isn’t super glossy either – just a layer of spot on lush lip colour. Madeira, Violet, Velvet and Tulip are my favourites. This pencils are also twist-up which for me means less mess, more product!

There are several other pencil products I enjoy using however the above products are currently in rotation and heavy play!

I hope you get a chance to check them out.

-s-

Posted in beauty, Bite Beauty, Bobbi Brown, Clinique, concealer, eyeshadow, foundation, makeup, NARS, Nudestix, pencil, product, product reviews | Comments Off on try it : pencil me in …

try it : olivia wilde smoky eye

It’s a pretty safe  bet to say that Olivia Wilde has some pretty piercing eyes … and that she has the smoky eye look down to an exact science … yes?

olivia

As we all struggle everywhere to create a sexy smoky eye that resembles more than just smudged eyeliner, Olivia’s makeup artist – Melanie Inglessis – shared with InStyle magazine her trick : purple eyeshadows.

According to the magazine, Inglessis uses mainly purple shadows and NO KOHL or black shadow (*gasp*). It kind of flips many of us upside down, because it’s extremely natural to think that a smoky eye = black shadow (and dark greys too!). Another tip : to soften the look, she rounds out the outer edges of the eyeshadow and diffuses any harsh borders.

While Olivia’s transformation over the years has her experimenting with everything from the bold statement lip to feline flicked liner, her go-to is definitely smoky. If you are thinking of trying her purple-hued smoky style, may I suggest :

NARS Eyeshadow Duo in Jolie Poupee : a violet and pearlescent purple pairing which would be great for adding layers and dimension to a purple smoky eye.

MAC Eyeshadow in Shadowy Lady : a matte deep plum that  is perfect for smoking it up from the lashline and grounding more shimmery shades.

Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeliner Pencil  in Empire : an inky pencil that glides one with ease giving your smoky look a complete finish.

There are plenty PLENTY of options out there from all your favourite brands, and the great thing about the whole sexy sultry smoky eye look is that playing with the combinations is half the fun.

Try it!

-s-

Posted in eyeliner, eyes, eyeshadow, MAC, MAC Cosmetics, NARS, smoky eye, try it, Urban Decay | Comments Off on try it : olivia wilde smoky eye

countdown to christmas : NARS blushes

Sometimes the best christmas gift is not something made all frilly with holiday touches. It’s not about a limited edition lip gloss set, or a holiday themed makeup bag. Instead, its about those tried+true makeup products that a girl yearns for all year round.

nars

For me, that would probably be a selection of NARS blushes. I bet you I am not alone on that sentiment. NARS blushes are best known for their superb pigment, their finely milled consistency, and just the right amount of shimmer. The colour selection is vast, and th e end result is always natural, see-through blush. Some might say you cannot go wrong with Orgasm (which is true) … but my favourites are Deep Throat, Luster and Oasis.

If you are going for a simple stocking stuffer, picking up just one blush is sure to make a gal happy. If you are trying to go with a really well-rounded gift, I would suggest the following DIY gift set :

Paloma Contour blush
Deep Throat blush
– a beautiful blush brush

Wrap it up pretty in a small makeup bag, and even the most novice beauty junkie can give herself cheekbones and structure in a flash.

-s-

Posted in blush, gift ideas, holiday, holiday gift guides, holiday season, NARS, shopping lists | Comments Off on countdown to christmas : NARS blushes

best of bridal beauty : a few of my favourite things …

Our Bridal Beauty Preview for Fall/Winter 2015-2016 was a smash success, and it had me thinking that I should really take a moment to share some of my favourite items for knocking out some bridal beauty.

Like any makeup artist worth her beauty blender, I have a huge kit, but a selection of products that are a must, must, must. I have products I love for creating a smokey eye, a classic twist, a vintage red lip. So keep reading … because I’m about to share.

The Red Lip …

Hands down, it’s NARS. Always NARS. My favourite product(s) is their Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in either Cruella, Red Square or Pop Life. The matte finish stays put but doesn’t look dry and for an all day event like a wedding you need something more matte than glossy.  If it’s not the pencils – it’s their new Audacious lipstick colours and you can take your pick : Rita, Marlene, Geraldine, Lana  – which range from true red to a more orange based (which I think is hot for a bride!)

The Rosy Lip …

Photo by Jonathan Ponce

Rose, Plum, and anything softly pink are the other bridal favourite.  To be honest, I smushed everything down into a palette, and didn’t write the names anywhere, but I do have my favourites in a tube. They include : Plumful, Syrup, and Twig by MAC; Casablanca by Tom Ford; and pretty much anything by Bobbi Brown! And while we are here, let’s talk about nude lips, again, I’m going to throw to NARS for Belle Du Jour and Bobbi Brown for a colour I have called Uber Pink (which isn’t a bright pink at all).

The Eyeshadow …

Makeup artists have their shadows they swear by. For example, it doesn’t matter what other palette I have in my kit … I’m a slave for MAC Shroom. I will always have a pot or seven of it in my kit(s). But right now, I’m favouring Lorac Pro Palette for it’s neutral but shimmery shades however this is currently not available for Canada so you have to online shop it.  My Smashbox Double Exposure Palette is hitting the mark for more glam styles (and you can get this at Murale or Shoppers Drug Mart for those Optimum points!) and I’m am currently obsessed with TooFaced Chocolate and Semi-Sweet Chocolate Eyeshadow palettes.  Both the Smashbox and the TooFaced Palettes, I find, really stick to the eye … not a lot of shadow fallout so I really enjoy using them for shading a heavier look.

The Flawless Skin … 

Photo by Jonathan Ponce

Again, I’m very much attached to my MAC Face and Body, because it allows me to adjust and layer as needed without getting to cake face. But for concealers, I’m devoted to my Amazing Cosmetics Concealer in various shades from Ivory to Light Honey, MAC Select Cover-up in those super portable triangle containers, and also, Stila Perfecting Concealer.

If I happen to have a client with acne issues, I’ve been reaching a lot for me Estee Lauder Clear Difference BB Creme, which for me, lays down a nice layer of coverage without looking dry, cakey or messy. For mature skin, I find their EE Creme to be effective as well.

Also, you can get great skin without primers. For the eyes, it’s always Urban Decay eye primers, and for the skin, I’ve been using Makeup Forevers new Step 1 Primers.

The Blush, The Highlight and The Contour …

Well, this list could go on forever, huh? Ha ha. I would have to say my friends right now are Cliniques new Highlighter and Contour Chubby Pencils. Just for the ease of use alone.  But I am also loving my new Stila Shape and Shade Custom Contour Duo and NARS The Matte Multiples in Altai.  As these are creams, after I set the cream product, I’ll go back in with a powder set for intensity, so I’m often reaching for Makeup Forever’s new Pro Sculpting Duos (which are insane – j’adore!), and my Aerin (Estee Lauder) Kaleidoscope Palette especially when the bride doesn’t want too much shimmer/shine.

For blush, well, hmmmm. I always layer cream under powder and my favourites are from rms beauty in Modest, Smile and Demure.  I also favour Makeup Forever’s HD Cream Blushes and NARS The Multiple in Puerto Vallarta or Altai.

For powder blushes, it’s always a selection of pinks and peaches from MAC that I lightly dust on.

The Lashes and Brows …

Photo by Rhommel Bernardino

I currently carry all three shades of Cargo’s Brow Kit in my bag and use both the powder and the wax for perfecting brows. But I also lean on MAC Brown Pencils as well and I love these for their easy application and also the spooly on the other end.

To define the lashes, it’s always Maybelline Great Lash in various formulas ranging from brown to dark brown to black. I rarely use pencil liners, but when I do, I’m using Cargo’s Swimmables or Urban Decay’s 24/7 pencils.

The Hair …

Let’s start with caring for the hair … which I normally don’t carry in my kit, but suggest to my brides. Especially after the long cold winter we are JUST getting rid of, brides need to start nourishing their hair back into shape.  I’m currently recommending the Nexxus Therappe and Humectress line of shampoo and conditioner for longer length hair that needs to be brought back to life from a dry season. I would also recommend OGX Vitamin E Shampoo and Conditioner for hair health. I suggest brides also pick up OGX’s Penetrating Oil and work it into the ends of the hair  – especially if they plan to leave the hair long and loose for the big day.

The Updo …

Well, I am sure bobby pins are a no brainer – right? I’m picking them up by the box at Sally Beauty in shades of black, brown and silver.  SalonCare is the brand available, but there is also Marianna.

To reduce  oil or add texture to the hair, it’s always Not Your Mother’s Dry Shampoo.  For tousled perfection, I’m really liking Tresemme’s Perfectly (un)Done Hairspray. I also like their big cans of spray and will usually carry a couple of extra hold formulas, and also climate control. To tame frizzies, or induce a sheen, I’m going back to Not Your Mothers for their Smooth Moves hair creme.

For hair prep and finishing, I’m also relying on Sally Hershberger’s Signature Line (available at Shoppers Drug Mart) mainly using the Keratin Repair Spray and also, the Galm Waves Texture Spray.

So that’s it!

My kit in one really long blog post.   Would love to know what other artists are using in their kits, but would also love to answer questions any brides or beauty bunnies out there might have about any of the above products! You know where to reach me : beautymail@blushpretty.com!

Have a great hump day all!

-stephanie-

Posted in 777 beauty, Aerin, Amazing Cosmetics, bb cream, beauty, beauty kit, Bobbi Brown, bp bridal, bridal, bridal beauty, bronzers, brows, Cargo, concealer, Estee Lauder, eyebrows, eyeliner, hair, MAC, MAC Cosmetics, MAKE UP FOR EVER, MAKE UP FOR EVER, Maybelline, Murale, NARS | Comments Off on best of bridal beauty : a few of my favourite things …

beauty bite : five tricks on mastering a smokey eye for summer!

Normally when the heat hits record temperatures, we as women forego heavier makeup and switch out deep colours, smokey eyes, and bold lips for dewy bronzy skin with a lip gloss to match. And that looks sexy and all – but sometimes a good smokey eye, is a good smokey eye. The little trick to mastering smokey on a hot summer’s night : change up the blush to change up the feel.

When it comes to a smokey eye, many think its all shades of black, gray, and the darkest brown you can find, but the trick for making it hot for summer, pun totally intended, is to lighten it up a bit.

Here are my 5 tricks for working a summery smokey eye …

1. Go smokey, but don’t fire it up : instead of doing dark and smokey all up and over the lid, gradually fade out the colour, working to a light, shimmery version of your chosen shade just above the crease.

2. Rethink the colour scheme : like I said, people think matte black, gray or dark brown for a smokey eye, but how about soft satin browns or bronzes, heather grays, and shimmery lavenders for a smokey mix?

3. Ditch the overly bronzed skin : while bronzed skin is the uniform for summer, I like to see a fresh dewy complexion with a smokey eye. It keeps the entire look more “the hot girl next door” instead of  “the real(ly desperate) housewife you’re trying to run away from”.

4. Skip the gloss : instead of reaching for a sticky gloss, switch out your lip colour for something creamy and light. Think chubby pencil formulas or tinted balms that run a little more opaque in colour than sheer. Keep the colour light and in season too.

5. Go mango : chocolate mangos taste really good; and the colour combination isn’t so bad either. A milk chocolate colour scheme with the eyes paired with mango-hued cheeks signals summer. It’s not as glam barbie as wearing a pink blush, and the touch of mango gives the same glow as your bronzer would have.

There you go : my top five tricks for wearing a smokey eye all summer long. For a product rundown of the look above, keep scrolling.  Interested in sharing your tips for a smokey summer eye? Please leave it in the comments section and share with us! We would love to hear from you!

Want to hear and see more beauty bite how-to’s? That’s easy : don’t forget to subscribe to the blog, or better yet, get it straight in your inbox. Sign up for our newsletter by opting in here!

Happy Monday All!

-stephanie-

 

Product Roll Call!

Meet the beautiful Megan F., a transplant from Houston who is a teacher by day and a fitness goddess by night. She competes in fitness shows, personal trains, and looks awesome every time I see her! She was kind enough to lend me her gorgeous hair and face for this beauty bite how-to. Here is how I completed her look :

Foundation : MAC Face+Body in N1 and N3
Concealer : MAC Select Cover-up in NW25
Contour+Highlight : NARS The Multiple in Altai (contour) and Copacabana (highlight)
Blush : MakeupForever HD Cream Blush in 410 and NARS The Multiple in Puerto Vallarta
Eyeshadow : Smashbox Full Exposure and Double Exposure palette
Brows : MAC Eyebrow Pencil in Brunette
Mascara : Maybelline Great Lash
Eyeliner : Bobbi Brown Gel Eye Liner in Black Ink
False Lashes : Ardell singles in Medium
Lips :  Bite Beauty Lip crayon in Madiera
Setting Powder : MAC Blot Powder in Medium

She came in with her hair that naturally full and beautiful, but I curled the top half with velcro rollers and left it to set. When we returned to the hair, I curled the bottom half using a Hot Tools 1 1/4 curling iron and then let out the rollers and smoothed the curls to match.  I sprayed with Tresemme Perfectly Undone hairspray to hold the curl, and smoothed the ends with Not Your Mother’s Smooth Moves hair creme.

Posted in 777 beauty, beauty, beauty bite, Bite Beauty, Bobbi Brown, MAC, MAC Cosmetics, MAKE UP FOR EVER, makeup, NARS, Smashbox | Comments Off on beauty bite : five tricks on mastering a smokey eye for summer!