Archive for the ‘Lip Makeup’ Category

6 Cruelty-Free Beauty Brands You Need to Try

       
Monday, June 27th, 2016

Who doesn’t love a bunny?

Apparently, hundreds of beauty brands who test our beloved beauty products on the poor, helpless animals before they ask us to shell hundreds of dollars for a little fake up. And, China.

For those who don’t know, any foreign cosmetic products sold in mainland China are required to be tested on animals before being pushed out to the market.

Having being asked to pay hefty amounts for these beauty products, as consumers, we all have the right to at least demand some level of tolerance for these poor animals. However, if beauty brands continue to refuse to show any compassion, we always have the choice to opt for cruelty-free beauty brands who absolutely refuse to torture poor animals for the sake of beauty.

How To Find Out Which Beauty Brands Are Cruelty-Free?

Ask.

Yeah, its as simple as that. Most major companies go out of their way to respond to potential customer queries to convert them to regular ones, especially in such controversial and sensitive cases.

However, if you are not up for the whole emailing and querying route, there are always certain cruelty-free logos you can look out for on the brand’s website or it’s product packages.

There are currently three trustworthy organizations across the world that help identify brands who do not test on animals. However, the absence of any cruelty-free logo does not mean that the brand is not cruelty-free since the license to use logos costs.

But if you are on a lookout, check out for these three logos on your favorite beauty brands:

Image Credit: http://www.crueltyfreekitty.com/

Image Credit: http://www.crueltyfreekitty.com/

Here are our 6 favorite cruelty-free beauty brands to shop and try!

BECCA Cosmetics

Well known for its gorgeous highlighters, BECCA Cosmetics is an out and out cruelty-free brand. It’s website clearly states that the brand does not test any cosmetic products or even any cosmetic ingredients on animals. The products are all tested on paid volunteers during human clinical trials.

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Apart from being one of the leading brands for base products, BECCA Cosmetics also delivers amazing pigmentation in its color products too.

Some of its best-selling products include Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector, Under Eye Brightening Corrector, Backlight Priming Filter and Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed.

While the brand does not claim to be vegan, many of its products are vegan-friendly including the Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed, Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector, Mineral Blushes and Aqua Luminous Perfecting Foundation.

Caswell-Massey

What started as an apothecary shop over 2 centuries ago is now one of America’s most renowned personal care beauty brand, Caswell-Massey. While the brand’s ownership and product range has changed over the course of a whooping 258 year time period, its commitment to its environment has stayed unwavered. The brand has never its products on animals or had gotten animal testing done on their behalf.

all-new-caswell-massey

While there are a tonne of gorgeous fragrances to choose from the Caswell-Massey collections, their Signature line features three of their best-selling scents that add a modern twist to the otherwise traditional but elegant fragrances.

The Signature line features Almond and Aloe flavor, known for its ultra-hydrating yet mild conditioning properties, Lavender for it’s soothing and relaxing notes and Verbena for a radiant, fresh, clean feeling with hints of lemon herbal blends.

theBalm Cosmetics

Who hasn’t heard about theBalm cosmetics?

Known for their retro, vintage packaging and ofcourse their ah-mazing products, theBalm is yet another animal-friendly beauty brand that we absolutely love! And, for those who love a little quirkiness in their beauty stash without being cruel to the animals, an excellent alternative to animal testing brand, Benefit Cosmetics.

thebalm

We have already raved and dedicated an entire blog post to theBalm cosmetics, but we will still give an honorable mention to the brand’s best-selling products for being humane to the animal world.

Some of theBalm’s absolute must-haves include theManizer Sisters, Nude’tude Nude Eyeshadow Palette, Instain Long-Wearing Powder Stain Blushes, Cabana Boy Blush and Bahama Mama. For swatches and more details about the best-selling theBalm products, read Cult-Favorite theBalm Products Worth Trying.

Lipstick Queen

With an aim to help find all us girls our perfect lipstick, Lipstick Queen offers a tonne of gorgeous shades of lipsticks. The best part? All of them are not only never tested on animals but also do not use any animal derived ingredients other than Beeswax, which involves absolutely no harm to the bees.

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Last year, the brand surprised the beauty world by introducing the Frog Prince Lipstick which on appearance was an emerald green color; however, on application, turned to a shade of rosebud pink color according to the user’s lip pH! This means everyone had their own shade of rosebud pink with the same tube of lipstick! Magical, huh?

The product sold out like wild fire last year only to have its sister launches, Frog Prince Lip Gloss and Frog Prince Cream Blush to be an instant hit too recently. Grab your magical beauty products here!

Dermalogica

The skincare brand choice of professionals and specialists around the world, Dermalogica has always been a cruelty-free brand, proudly boasting of the Leaping Bunny logo. However, the brand landed in hot waters when the organizations found out that the brand was selling in China and thereby, going against the set laws of animal testing.

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Dermalogica pulled out of the Chinese market in the year 2012, only to have their animal testing status debatable again after its acquisition by Unilever last year. However, as of the recent news, the brand is still bunny friendly!

To hop on the brand-wagon, try some of their best-selling products like Daily Microfoliant, mediBac Oil Control Lotion and Active Moist.

Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics

Created by pro-aesthetician, Pauline Youngblood, Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics was initially created for her patients suffering from traumatized skin, looking for products to cover it up without the harmful side effects of the usual cosmetics.

15 years down the line, Youngblood Cosmetics is a world renowned company and a part of PETA’s (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) cruelty-free program. The line offers a range of products safe to use on an already suffering skin, along with options for those looking for vegan and gluten-free products.

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For those looking to try out the brand for the first time, here are some of their best-sellers definitely worth the splurge: Mineral Rice Setting PowderNatural Mineral FoundationEye Impact Quick Recovery Eye CreamYoungblood – Lipsticks and Incredible Wear Gel Liner.

Do cruelty-free beauty matters to you? Do you go out of your way to look for brands who do not test on animals? Let us know in comments below!

6 Summer Beauty Trends We Are Looking Forward To

       
Monday, June 20th, 2016

It might not feel like summer what with all the showers, but the occasional sunny days are definitely setting the summer mood for us. And, while we are loving the Spring beauty trends, we are more than looking forward to transitioning to the Summer ones!

Check out 6 Summer Beauty Trends we are looking forward to:

Non-Touring

Contouring was huge last year. More than huge. It was literally “cutting edge” at Instagram so much so that people forgot how to go au-naturel. Well, natural is back with non-touring this year.

What is Non-touring, you ask? It’s the lighter, more natural sister version of contouring. It’s there but it’s not there. Its enough to show off your defined cheek bones but its subtle enough to fool others to think you are naturally sculpted.

non-touring

Since summer is all about dewy, glowy skin, non-touring ensures that there is nothing matte about your makeup and thereby, uses products like tinted moisturizers, highlighters and luminous shimmers only.

Yes, none of those matte contour powders. Put the Kim stash away for next season!

The D Word

The D Word is here to stay it seems.

Everyone’s rocking the Dewy, glowy look in spite of the rising temperatures and it seems like they will continue to do so in the coming months.

If you are into minimal makeup and have oily skin (sigh!), you can achieve the look by simply mixing up your favorite moisturizer or facial oil (only a drop!) with your foundation and apply as you usually do. This will give your face an ethereal, from-within glow without looking like you tried too hard.

dewy makeup

If you are fortunate enough to have a normal skin type, unlike us oillies, you can go full blown with highlighters, illuminators and dewy foundations. Highlight, strobe, illuminate or do all of it, just remember to glow this season!

90s Grunge Eyeliner

90s retro trends are huge this year. Denim skirts and chokers, anyone?

Along with the retro fashion trends, a 90s makeup trend that is making a strong comeback this year is the graphic eye liner.

It’s all about drawing sleek, precise lines as you see fit according to your eye shape and your own personal preference. It can be as simple as defining the outer corner of the eyes only in the shape of a traditional cat eye or it can be something experimental like negative space liner where you draw lines in the outer crease of your eye lids.

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The key to the trend is to ensure that the liner stays as precise as you first put it on. Since summers are going to take a toll on our makeup and melt it right down our faces, do remember to use an eye shadow primer and budge proof liner.

The Blue Eye

It seems like the blue shade isn’t going anywhere this year.

The trend for the blue eye shadows was huge this Spring. From blue eye shadow applied bluntly across the upper eye lid to a subtle lower lash line pop of blue, the trend was major and it is here to stay.

Choose any shade of blue that you like and apply it as you love. It can be a sweep of eyeliner across your upper lid, a full flush of blue color across the lid or a popping blue swipe across the lower lids. Just remember to keep it bright!

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Another major trend to incorporate along with this trend is colored lashes!

Yup, they are back and with a bang! Opt for brightly colored mascaras and keep your other eye makeup minimal for a cool, retro look that is equally wearable for the office and for after-drinks!

Wet Shine Lips

Seems like the beauty world is ditching the matte trend for good.

With the lips too, its all about the wet, glossy look rather than the winter-old matte/velvet finish look.

You can achieve the wet pout look with a good lip gloss but the ramp worthy look is more achievable with the newly trending lip oils. Just be sure to choose a non-sticky lip oil to avoid the gooey, sticky mess (not a flattering look with an already melting summer look).

wet shine lips

The new lip oils are formulated with essential oils which means that these lippies double up as pigments and nourishment goodies. While you rock a gorgeous, bright, wet slick pout during the season, the oils hydrate and nourish your lips all day long!

Watermelon Hair, Lobs and Braided Do’s

We got your attention with watermelon hair, didn’t we?

The trend is crazy but it is definitely taking over Instagram enough to catch everyone’s attention. And no, it doesn’t involve donning a watermelon on your head. Not literally, at least.

Picture Credit: Instagram merpiremusic

Picture Credit: Instagram merpiremusic

Watermelon hair is a dyeing trend that involves coloring the top of your hair green (the outer part of the watermelon, just a little bright) and the bottom of your hair pink (the inner part of the watermelon).

Not your style? Opt for a bronde (a balayage kinda combination of brown and blonde) and ash (pale colors with gray undertones).

For haircuts, we can drone on and on about the new styles but we all know Kendall Jenner’s snapchat of her latest lob has already have us booking our appointments with our hairdressers.

Picture Credit: Kendall Jenner Snapchat

Picture Credit: Kendall Jenner Snapchat

If you are not one of us crazy celebrity followers and are still rocking your long gorgeous hair, browse through Instagram for beautiful braided styles; be it fishtail braids, half-ponytail braids or those intricate yet messy braided up-dos, all of those are simply perfect for the sunny weather to come!

Picture Credit: Pinterest

Picture Credit: Pinterest

With all of these gorgeous trends, do not forget to embrace the brightly colored, beach manicures. Be it the gorgeous aquamarines or multi-colored pops of different colors on each nail, go bright, go beachy!

Lipstick Queen: Naturally Amazing Lipstick

       
Friday, July 31st, 2015

Lipstick QueenLipstick is a crucial link in the chain when it comes to using makeup products to enhance the natural beauty of the face, and discover the glamour that is possible through your own creativity. Getting the most out of lipstick with these kinds of goals in mind means working with products that have real potential. Not just any color nor any lipstick will do with these ends in mind. So turning the spotlight on products that make the grade in almost everyone’s book is always a good start when putting yourself first. Lipstick Queen has been getting a lot of good attention in the cosmetics world thanks to its wealth of pigment, its ability to stay on for considerable periods of time, and the vast selection that waits at your fingertips for a reasonable price. With all these strengths working in its favor, high glamour is always within reach.

Lipstick Queen: Naturally Amazing LipstickLipstick Queen is also brilliant in terms of the themes that it embraces when developing its shades. For instance, their Silver Screen variety offers a hot-pink hue that derives its inspiration from the starlets of theater who we know and adore. The finish is nothing to take lightly, offering a durable, wet look that does not fall short when it comes to texture as well. Another of the unique qualities of Lipstick Queen are the scents that are built into many of the varieties. Silver Screen’s allure is enhanced through the use of natural peppermint oils that provide a pleasant scent on top of a pleasant, tingling sensation. These lipsticks offer just as much promise when it comes to the health of lips over time. In many of the selections, pomegranate is a primary ingredient that keeps lips soft, supple, and hydrated throughout the day.

Antioxidants are another concern for the makers of Lipstick Queen, an ingredient that deserves recognition. High levels of Vitamin E and Vitamin A equal long-lasting protection for the deepest layers of the skin and lips. The Queen Bee lipstick is another highly-popular variety that has earned the praise that it is receiving. As the name certainly suggests, the delicious aroma of this choice is made possible through the inclusion of natural honey. The other natural ingredients that contribute to its comfort and appeal are sunflower extract, chamomile, and royal jelly. This combination makes it a wonderful choice as a lipstick that is ideal for sore and chapped lips as well. It is possible to look good while healing lips at the same time. Lipstick Queen has also tackled the need for a lipstick that does the job of a gloss without forcing full coverage. The solution is their Medieval brand that uses the organic acidity of lemons in order to draw out the naturally-red appearance of the lips.

Five Makeup Tips for an Instant Mood Boost!

       
Tuesday, June 9th, 2015

Five Makeup Tips for an Instant Mood Boost!Nothing is sure to pick up your day and turn around your mood like an instant, mini-makeover. Have you ever noticed how when you leave the hair salon, you always seem to be in a good mood? Well, not everyone can go wash and style their hair in the middle of the day, but one thing you usually can step away to do, is touch up your make up. Somehow, taking on the world with a fresh face gives you the boost in confidence you need to turn your attitude around and feel much better immediately.

Here are 5 Quick Makeup Go-To’s to Boost your Mood:
First, never underestimate the power of a great set of lashes. Whether it’s dealing with a frustrating boss, a difficult peer, or just a rude man at the post office, people are sure to respond to you differently when you look at them with a set of big, doe-eyes. Never forget your favorite mascara. One of my personal favorites is Young Blood’s Mineral Lengthening Mascara

Next, for a little extra charm, be sure to curl your lashes! This step can make all the difference in the world – a curled set of lashes frames your eye perfectly and makes it impossible to look away. Try Paula Dorf’s CURL-UP Eyelash Curler

If mascara and an eyelash curler are too much trouble to keep in your purse, you can always try out a curling mascara, such as Size Queen by Too Faced

Third, never neglect your lips. Lip gloss only takes a second to apply, and it gives your make-up a polished look that makes you look put-together, even if you feel frazzled. My personal favorites are in natural, nude shades, and always add a lip-plumping boost. While I would usually opt for a product like Too Faced Lip Injection to use on a regular basis, something like Joey New York Collagen Boosting Duo, that comes with two colors on either end – I love the Sheer Pink/Natural Nude combo – gives you options in the moment, even if you’re on the go!

Fourth, make sure to have your favorite blush or bronzer with you, and a brush to apply it with. Knowing you have a beautiful glow will make you feel as refreshed as you’ll look. Something like Youngblood Natural Radiance (Sunshine) will do the trick perfectly and is subtle enough to look natural. Sometimes, just taking the brush you normally use with your bronzer gives you the subtle enough boost to your color that you’re looking for, without even applying more of the product.

Last, but definitely not least, check to see if you need to grab a Facial Blotting Paper. This will help take away any shine on your face and will make your make-up look brand new. If you have it on you, you can always add on a bit of light foundation powder. Try Jane Iredale – Facial Blotting Papers.

After whatever has been bothering you, taking the time to follow these five, quick steps, is sure to give you the mental space needed to take on your day with a fresh outlook. Sometimes it helps to keep a little cosmetics case in your purse, with these go-to items and any others you think might help you take back your day. Including sample sizes of any of your favorite products – especially fragrances – is a great way to keep cosmetics on you, even if you prefer to leave your bag at home.

Sometimes, a bad day is exactly the excuse we need to take a few minutes to pamper ourselves!

Clean Up Your Makeup Drawer To Stay Looking Beautiful

       
Sunday, September 7th, 2014

Clean Up Your Makeup Drawer To Stay Looking Beautiful As heartbreaking as it may be, sometimes we have to say goodbye to makeup that has been hanging around in our makeup drawer for too long. It is not fun to feel like you are throwing away beautiful products, but consider it a chance to invest in something new. Maybe you have been wanting to try a new shade or formula for a while now and you finally have your chance! At some point, makeup becomes unhealthy for your skin and eyes. Knowing when your beauty products have reached their expiration date is an important piece of information that you should be aware of.

Mascara/Eyeliner
Any product that is used around your eyes is something you need to be careful with. Bacteria can find its way into your eyes and cause an infection. Mascara should be tossed after 3-4 months to prevent any eye issues.

Foundation/Concealer/Cream Makeup
To help prevent skin breakouts or irritations, throw out foundation and other liquid or cream makeup products after about one year. You can tell that foundation has expired when the liquid starts to separate. If your foundation contains sunscreen, it may not be effective after the expiration date. This is important if preventing sun damage is a concern of yours.

Lipstick/Lip Gloss

Lips can be sensitive to products so it is important to know when to throw out your old lipstick in favor of something new. Lipstick is good for about 2 years. After that, it may dry out or become unsafe to use on your pretty lips.

Powder Blush/Eyeshadow/Bronzer
Makeup that comes in powder form is considered okay to use for about 2 years. Skin irritation or reduction in quality are concerns if makeup is used beyond that time period.

There are some types of makeup products that come with printed on expiration dates and some that do not. You may want to write the date you started using the product on the lid or bottom of the bottle. If you can’t remember the date you started using your makeup product, there are some things to look for to decide if it is unsafe to use. Some ways to tell if makeup is expired are:
* It smells funny
* The makeup looks discolored
* Begins to clump, flake or dry out
* Liquid makeup starts to separate

Hopefully, these tips are helpful in cleaning out your makeup drawer. Using safe cosmetics will keep your skin looking beautiful and healthy.

Seven Winter Tips For Soft Lips

       
Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Seven Winter Tips For Soft Lips
The cold days of winter can be the perfect inspiration for pulling out those gorgeous sweaters, chic boots and attractive scarves. You might even reinvent your makeup strategy and skincare regimen to look and feel your best during the most frigid of days. In the middle of all the frenzy, we often tend to ignore our precious pouts. Achieving soft, kissable lips, all through the year, does not have to be a mountain of a task. With a few simple tips, you will be well on your way to flaunting those absolutely attractive lips, no matter what the season.

Don’t Overdo The Lip Balm
Believe it or not, too much lip balm or gloss can actually dry your lips out. Our lips are conditioned to produce natural oils for protection and nourishment. By constantly applying a lip balm, you are reducing your body’s need to generate its own essential moisture. Choose a deliciously flavored lip balm for instant revitalization, and always remember that less is more.

Remove Those Dead Cells
Smiling with chapped and dry lips can be painful and embarrassing. Keep them smooth and supple by exfoliating with a quality lip scrub, once or twice a week. Empower your lips to sport that perfect shade of lipstick, all day and night, with a gentle scrub and intense moisturizing treatment.

Lip Masks Are In
A rejuvenating lip mask can be the perfect way to get rid of dead cells and heal your lips inside out. Make your own by combining a tablespoon of sour cream with a few drops of lemon juice and half a teaspoon of olive oil. Apply on lips and wash off after 20 minutes to reveal beautiful baby soft lips underneath. Follow with a lip renewal treatment in your favorite shade and flavor, such as Le Couvent des Minimes – Smile Lip Balm Honey.

Don’t Just Settle For Any Lipstick
Not all lipsticks are made the same. Choose yours wisely. Many lipsticks are infused with moisturizers that can boost the appearance and health of your lips. For a high-gloss look that is packed with all-day hydration and flavor, try Philosophy Fresh Cream High Gloss, High-Flavor Lip Shine.

Tap Into The Benefits Of Vitamin E
Your lip care routine does not have to be elaborate or time consuming. For an instant boost, dab a few drops of vitamin E oil on your lips to restore a youthful texture and negate the signs of aging. Vitamin E is loaded with antioxidants that fight free radicals and protect against sun damage. Choose lip care products that contain vitamin E for added benefits, such as Yu-Be- Lip Therapy or Dermalogica- Age Smart Multivitamin Power Firm for Eye and Lip Area.

Resist The Urge To Lick Your Lips
Licking dry and sore lips can worsen the situation by depleting the thin layer of natural oils on the surface. Never rub, lick or pick on your irritated and chapped lips.

Find Lip Balms With SPF
Your lips are exposed to the sun as much as your skin. Lips do not contain the protective pigment called melanin, found in your skin, and are equally prone to damage from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. A lip balm with SPF can be an ideal choice for protective coverage all day long. Try Kamins Chemist- Lip Balm SPF 20 for an intensive moisturizing lip treatment.

Beauty trends to toss and try in 2014

       
Thursday, December 26th, 2013

Beauty trends to toss and try in 2014

As the year draws to a close and 2014 rapidly approaches, we’re all looking forward to new makeup and hair looks to try out. However, there are some trends that simply aren’t worth embracing – or have had their time in the spotlight and no longer look as eye-catching. Just because something becomes a fad for a brief period doesn’t mean you should stick with it. In fact, some of the most popular crazes in the beauty realm aren’t universally flattering.

Aiming to update your appearance for the new year? Here’s a guide to which tired trends you should avoid, and which new looks you should adopt:

Hair
One thing’s for sure – you saw a lot of ombre in 2013, from hair to manicures and even on lips. While there’s definitely a convenience factor when it comes to this trend as it allows you to grow out those highlights without worrying about your roots, there’s a slightly different twist that’s emerging for 2014. Glamour magazine called this new technique “Ecaille,” or “Tortoiseshell coloring.” The method was developed by the London-based colorist Jo Hansford, and has been seen on both Jessica Alba and Scarlett Johansson. It’s a slightly softer look than the high contrast two-tone ombre. The finished effect is multi-tonal, meaning darker shades fade more naturally into lighter hues on the ends.

Those with wavy or curly hair will rejoice in the fact that it’s time to put down the straightening iron – the pin-straight look is getting a rest this year. 2014 will be all about volume as opposed to flat ‘dos, which can tend to look a bit boring. Embrace your naturally tousled texture with the right hair products and you’ll look effortlessly beautiful.

As far as hair colors go, you can say goodbye to rainbow hues. Kyle White, the lead colorist at the Oscar Blandi Salon, told StyleList that he is seeing fewer clients ask for pinks, blues and other bright hair colors – which is probably a good thing as these pigments tend to fade after just a few washes and look less than stunning. Instead, he noted that more women will be opting for platinum hair. As Miley Cyrus, Elle Fanning and even the traditionally brunette Kim Kardashian are going for a cooler blonde, White expects more women to try this trend.

Makeup
Not all pink lipsticks are created equal. While bubblegum may have had a major moment in 2013, a new shade will be taking its place this year: fuchsia. As The Huffington Post pointed out, bubblegum is not flattering on many skin tones, but fuchsia can complement any complexion.

While dark lips were everywhere this year, Glamour noted that in 2014, more women will be reaching for rich berry shades in a sheer tinted formula. The advantage of these products is that they provide slightly less pigment so the final look isn’t quite as intense. Still, you can layer them if you want more drama. This is a subtler approach to the trend that is far more wearable than the grungy effect we saw in 2013.

Also, 2014 will be the year to lay off the bronzer a bit. This doesn’t mean you’ll be ditching your glow, it’s just that everyone is stepping away from the overly tanned look. For a natural radiance, try a light-reflecting tinted moisturizer and only use a bronzer that’s one to two shades deeper than your skin tone.

Although nail art isn’t completely out this year, it will be going through a major transformation. Instead of over-the-top graphics, try out some simpler designs like stripes, color blocking and a half-moon take on the French manicure in neutral lacquer hues.

A step-by-step guide to pink ombré lips

       
Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

A step by step guide to pink ombré lips

The ombré effect made a big splash over the past few years, as many celebrities traded their perfect highlights and dye jobs for a grown-out, faded look. We all rejoiced because truth be told, it meant that we could wait a little longer in between salon trips and still look polished. Now, ombré is going beyond hair and becoming a major lip trend. While matte lipstick is no doubt still having a moment, an allover lip shade with consistent intensity can sometimes get boring. The best part about ombré lips is that with varying richness of pigment, you can dramatically boost the fullness of your pout.

Ready to draw attention to your lips? Here’s how to get this stunning two-tone look:

  1. You’ll need two shades of pink, one lighter and one that’s two to three shades deeper, for the ombré effect. The possibilities are endless, so feel free to play around with dusty rose, bubblegum pink and even electric fuchsia. However, it’s important that they are the same hue, so if you’re using an icy cool pale pink, make sure that your darker shade is in the same color family and also has cool undertones. Conversely, a golden or coral pink lipstick should be used in conjunction with a warmer dark color.
  2. Start by dabbing the deeper shade on the center of your lower lip. Press your lips together so that it smudges to the middle of your top lip as well.
  3. Now it’s time to apply the darker shade along the outer lined of your lips. Makeup artist Benjamin Puckey told InStyle magazine that he likes to use a firm flat lip brush, as this helps to ensure a precise line. This step is key because it provides definition to your pout.
  4. Next, it’s time to reach for the lighter color. Dab it into the middle of your top and bottom lips and blot them together one time. The paler tone will illuminate your pout, which gives you a plumping effect.
  5. Now that your ombré lips are complete, how do you finish the look? You want to make sure that your pout stays in the spotlight, so this isn’t the time for dramatic eyes or cheeks. Consider adding a light layer of pink blush to the apples of your cheeks for a fresh-faced flush. Then, create a subtle and sleek cat-eye with some liquid liner and you’re good to go.

Trend alert: Blurred lips

       
Friday, December 13th, 2013

Trend alert: Blurred lips

The latest lip trend is the epitome of perfect imperfection. While blurred lips may seem like a beauty accident, the look is actually totally intentional, and incredibly stunning. However, achieving this effect doesn't just require messing up your lipstick – it's an art. This trend initially exploded when models on couture runways strutted down the catwalks rocking a blurry pout, and ever since then, more fashion-forward ladies have been clamoring to emulate the look.

You can get a soft-focus pout, too, by following these simple tips:

Red outside the lines
The models at the Marni show sported a classic red lip, which certainly never goes out of style. However, their version didn't seem to have any boundaries. In fact, the outline of the lips completely disappeared, so it looked as if the lips faded right into the skin. To get that effect, makeup artist Tom Pecheux told Allure magazine that he used a matte berry lipstick to get a rich pop of pigment. Then, he dusted a bright crimson loose pigment on top to set the color. After dipping a cotton swap into translucent powder, he swept it around the edges of the lips to make it look blurry.

Makeup artist Lucia Pieroni used almost the same tactic on the models at Vera Wang. She layered two different burgundy lipsticks on the center of the lips to get the perfect wine-inspired hue, and then dragged the pigment toward the edges with a Q-tip. 

Grunge glam
Rachel Zoe wanted a dramatic look for her show. Makeup artist Charlotte Tilbury told the magazine that the designer sought a bold oxblood lip color, which strikes a balance between red and purple. However, she also aimed to soften the intensity of the dark hue by diffusing it. After applying an oxblood lipstick, focusing on the middle of the models' lips, Tilbury blended the pigment outward using her fingertip. The result? A look that's both elegant and edgy at the same time.

Fade out
While you typically apply lip color to make your pout appear plumper, the objective at the Dior show was just the opposite. Makeup artist Pat McGrath, who has painted the models' faces for dozens of couture designers, said that the girls in Andy Warhol illustrations were her muse for this look. She started by applying an intense fuchsia lipstick all over the lip. Then, she used translucent powder to tone down the color a bit and lock it in place. The most important step, though, was dabbing concealer around the border of the mouth so that only the center had a pink flush.

How to rock Radiant Orchid: Pantone’s color of 2014

       
Thursday, December 12th, 2013

How to rock Radiant Orchid: Pantone's color of 2014

Every year, Pantone selects a new hue for us to focus on, which dictates the color of everything from our clothes to our manicures. In 2013, that color was emerald green, and there's no doubt that the glimmering shade was seen everywhere. By the year's end, we may have tired of the color somewhat, but luckily we have a new hue to look forward to: Radiant Orchid.

"An enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health," said Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, according to Beauty World News. "It is a captivating purple, one that draws you in with its beguiling charm."

Ready to incorporate this color into your makeup routine? As 2014 approaches, here are some ideas to help you embrace this stunning shade of purple:

Eyes
It seems that celebs are way ahead of the trend when it comes to purple eye makeup. Lea Michelle sported plum eyeliner at the People's Choice Awards last January, and Selena Gomez performed "Come & Get It" on "Dancing With The Stars" last April with a violet smoky eye. Radiant orchid is a decidedly different shade, though, and it's a great option when you want a pop of color around your eyes that's striking but not shocking. Reach for a silky eye crayon in this hue and line both your upper and lower lashes. Then follow up with a thinner application of black liquid liner on top of it to further define the eye. If you're ready to amplify your look, dust a layer of orchid shadow over your eyelids and then carefully sweep a deeper shade of the same hue into the crease. The final step? Mascara with a subtle hint of purple, of course.

Lips
You may be well aware that purple lips are in – just look to Ke$ha, who showed up at the 2013 MTV Movie Awards with this look. Radiant orchid isn't as severe as the dark plum lip shades that we saw this year, though. In fact, because this hue has pink undertones, it's wearable on any complexion. Look for a rich creamy matte lavender lipstick with just a hint of rosy pink and apply two layers for extra intensity. In terms of your eye makeup, it's best to accent your radiant pout with cool tones like silver and slate. Try sweeping an iridescent highlighter on your brow-bone to brighten up your eyes, then cover your lids in a pearly pale gray shadow. Glide a dark charcoal pencil along your upper lash-line and then use a smudge brush to soften up the smoky look.