The Beauty Bar

November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope you will have a truly marvelous day with your loved ones. Today's picks are my most frequently used-and loved- products of the week. I've been meaning to do a post like this for quite a while, but you know how they say better late than never, right?

Chanel Poudre Universelle Compact Pressed Powder in 30 Naturel
You know the drill, I love me some dewy complexion. Which, on a combination skin- sadly- can get a bit out of control meaning that a  setting powder is an absolute must have. You see, there is a fine line between a 'lit from within,' dewy complexion and greasy, sweaty look, so for me it's paramount to set the liquid foundation with a translucent finishing powder. A few weeks back, I picked up a lighter shade 30 Naturel of the Chanel Poudre Universelle Powder, which matches my skin tone perfectly because the one I had before 40 Dore- the one bought in the summertime- was a tad dark for my skin. It's a finely-milled sheer pressed powder with a hint of coverage, which on the skin looks very natural. A quick swoosh of this powder eliminates a greasy shine on the t-zone when used as a touch-up throughout the day and sets the makeup beautifully in the morning.

Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dolce Vita
Ah yes, I found the perfect lip pencil for everyday wear. As I've mentioned in one of previous posts, my favorite lipstick ever is Dolce Vita. So I thought I'd explore further with other Nars lip products and got a lip pencil with the same title (boring, I know) but from the velvet matte range; it's because I wanted the exact same shade but with a better staying power than the lipstick version-and I think I got it right. The Dolce Vita lipstick is described as dusty rose, however I'd describe the velvet matte version as a subtle brick shade. Although it has a matte finish, it's not as drying on the lips. Also, I like the fact that it serves as a lip liner and a lipstick.

Nars Sheer Glow foundation in Fiji
Ah, it's a good old favorite of mine; a dewy complexion in a bottle. This foundation gives me a healthy natural glow which is very much appreciated particularly in the winter season- no more plane-dulled skin. It goes on sheer, but gives a decent amount of coverage which allows to conceal any redness and unevenness without making it look cake-y and unnatural. My favorite method to apply is with a dampened beauty blender, it gives the most natural flawless finish that looks like skin.

Benefit Brow Zings in Light
The other day I had my eyebrows waxed at the Benefit Brow Bar, and the lady there filled in my sparse, uneven brows using the Brow Zings duo set. I find that powder/wax combination works wonders to bridge the gaps than an eyeshadow alone. It looks natural and lasts all day. My only complaint is that I wish there was a wider selection of shades-especially the taupe-based colors. Nevertheless, the shade I got matches my hair color really well.

Make Up Forever Aqua Black Waterproof Eye Shadow
I'm an avid wearer of eyeliner and I'm always on the lookout for something better than I already own (typical me). So, when I saw this product at the MUFE counter, I thought I'd give this a go because I've never tried a cream eyeliner before and apparently there is as twice amount of product comparing to the Bobbi Brown Long-Wear gel eyeliner (0.24 oz/ $23 vs. 0.10 oz/ $24). I  find the formula to be very long-lasting-it stays on all day without smudging or fading. Although it takes a bit longer to dry than gel eyeliners, once it's dry it really doesn't move. For that reason, besides lining just the eyes I prefer to tight line with this, too.

wearing the Dolce Vita velvet matte lip pencil

Feel-Good Music Playlist

November 14, 2014

One of the best ways to uplift my spirits when I’m feeling down is to listen to my favorite music; upbeat, positive songs definitely have the power to boost my mood.  Today I thought I’d share my playlist with all of you- hope it will make your day a bit better. So, without a further ado, here's my 'feel-good' music playlist. Enjoy!

My Birthday & Dior Lip Glow

November 13, 2014

So yesterday (11/11) I turned 21. I don’t know how time is passing by so quickly, it seems like only yesterday I turned eleven- but now I’m older, better, wiser, and stronger as a person. My twenties have taught me a lot so far. Over the past year, I learned that I should focus more on the present; worry less about unimportant matters; be positive and enjoy every moment of my life and, most importantly, to do more of what I love.

( now back to beauty) I've always been a big fan of Dior cosmetics, so there was no doubt that on my birthday I'd treat myself with a little something special from this brand. Of course, I bought their newest release, Diorskin Star Foundation, which I mentioned in this post, and I couldn't resist buying one of the coolest lip balms, Lip Glow Color Reviver, which develops a unique shade according to the pH level of your lips- I couldn't say no to that!

Firstly, I love the concept of this product, I think it's very unique. The 'Lip Glow' adjusts to the chemistry of your lips- hence upon application you'll get a personalized shade of pink (also available in coral).  It literally 'revives' dull looking lips by giving it a hint of color; on my lips it shows up as a subtle rose petal shade with a hint of sheen, which I think is just the most beautiful shade for everyday wear. The texture is lovely, it easily glides on the lips leaving them ultra soft, smooth, and moisturized for hours. It nourishes and soothes the lips thanks to mango butter &loofah extract, and protects from the sun exposure with SPF 10. Yes, the price isn't the cheapest, but if you're willing to splurge on a good quality lip balm, go ahead. From now on, it's definitely a staple in my bag- I'm loving it.
What do you think? Have you tried it?

Top 5 Lip Balms

November 10, 2014

I'm pretty picky when it comes to lip balms, which is probably the reason why I have just a few of them: two are deep conditioning (1&5), others are for on-the-go (2,3,4). Here is a list of products that are tried, tested and true.

1. Smith's Rosebud Salve 

2. Carmex Soothing Lip Balm

3. Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm SPF 25

4. Smith's Rosebud Salve (in a tube)

5. Nuxe Reve de Miel

Get Perfect Luminous Complexion

November 8, 2014

 As winter is creeping closer, my skin, respectively, is getting drier day by day, so besides putting on tons of moisturizer and hydrating masks, I attempt to fake a dewy, luminous glow using the power of makeup. What's new? As per usual, I've had a few things on my wish list for quite a while, so I decided to take the plunge and buy them. But before doing that, of course, I asked for a few samples at the makeup counter simply because the beauty products I chose, unfortunately, aren't the cheapest ones on the market, but well worth the price; no regrets whatsoever!

Since I'm almost out of MAC Lustre Drops, which sadly has been discontinued, I thought I'd try something new, something that I'd wanted for  a while now- the BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector. It gives a natural, subtle glow to the skin which immediately transforms the look  for the better-no more dull, flat looking skin! Unlike other highlighters that contain chunky glitters, this has ultra-fine, light-reflecting particles that give your skin a healthy, natural luminosity. The consistency is sheer, so it blends into the skin very quickly, allowing you to apply other products on top as well. The best way to apply is to lightly dab a small amount of product (I prefer using the Beauty Blender) to the the highest points of the face: forehead, bridge of the nose, cheekbones, under the eyes, etc. and then, I usually apply foundation over it- it basically works as a base, giving me a 'lit-from-within' type of glow. However, there are plenty of ways to apply it-all of them work equally well. Moreover, I like the fact that it doesn't just improve the look in an instant, but it also has beneficial ingredients; the key ingredients include vitamins A, B, D &E, avocado oil, witch hazel, and aloe extract.

Laura Mercier Secret Concealer #2
If, like me, you're a fan of the Bobbi Brown Corrector for covering the dark under eye circles, you should try the Secret Concealer next. Like, why haven't I tried it before- it's so damn good! One of the main problems I face on a daily basis is a patchy under eye area- though I do moisturize it with heavy-duty eye creams, somehow it's still dry. Well, you know the drill, whenever you have a dry under eye area, most correctors and concealers highlight the issue even more. Therefore, I decided to switch things up a bit and picked up a new one- the Laura Mercier Secret Concealer in #2 ( for light complexions with warm undertones). I'd say this  is a medium coverage concealer, easily blend-able, hydrating and very natural looking under the eyes. The formula is creamy so it's important to set it with a powder, but other than that it's one of the best under eye concealers I've tried. Amazing.

 Diorskin Star Foundation
I was super excited when I heard that Dior released their new foundation, Diorskin Star. Deep inside I was hoping that this would be the one and only because none of their existing foundations worked for my skin. I paid a visit to the local Sephora and asked for a sample to try out before shelling out money and after using it consistently for about a week, I realized that it's a perfect foundation for everyday wear and finally got a full-size bottle. I love everything about it. It's so light, it feels like there's absolutely nothing on your face, yet it evens out the skin tone and covers minor imperfections without looking cake-y. It leaves a lovely, natural finish with a beautiful glow- it looks like your skin, only better. Love it.

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