September 30th, 2010 § § permalink
Last Saturday I attended one of my first (or maybe 3rd, I can’t remember now, I don’t attend these type of shoots very often, I’m more an outdoor photo shoot sort of person… which works great with my public audience anxiety!) studio shoots organised by the very talented Elias Lopez. He invited a bunch of us cosplayers to all come along and have a grand ol time.
I came with the intent to learn how to improve my Lookbook studio settings as a photographer (as you know I’m desperate to make my Lookbooks look more ‘pro’) and knew this would be the perfect place to learn. (So no costumes from me this time!)
After all some of -the- most popular and famous Manifest and con photographers were attending this shoot, people I’m so fortunate and lucky to be able to call my friends <3 Neil Creek, Sam Ee, Hayden Pratt and of course Elias. If you attend any Melbourne animanga and/or video gaming conventions, you’ll know who these guys are!
The models / cosplayers who came along were also some of the most well known in Melbourne / Australia, (again seriously how do I end up being around such awesome company!?) Sefie, Annie, Stacey and Siera~ Twas unfortunate K and Aly were unable to attend this round, but I’m sure I’ll catch up with them soon <3
See below my lovely makeup setup. I’m always this messy, a fact I’m not proud of :/ Why the makeup? I managed to squeeze in a Lookbook at the shoot that will be up this Friday~ =D
Annie’s makeup station, we are palette obsessed, yes!
Overall, I learnt a TON about how my lighting should work so I hope to bring you some better Lookbooks in the future. And as well, had a blast just because I was around such wonderful people~ I can’t wait to shoot with these guys again! I’ll make sure to have a new costume ready too
September 29th, 2010 § § permalink
This past winter I was obsessed with ankle booties, but obviously wearing them in our hot Aussie summer will leave me with some very sweaty feet (eww). But thanks to my boot obession, I don’t actually have many open toed shoes. Which is strange because I love them, so above are a couple I’m currently eyeing/saving for~
I’ll be honest, I hate buying shoes at full price, because 95% of the time they will end up on sale. So I make sure to build a massive “wishlist” and when the sales hit (and they always do), I can start sniping off which ones are still available in my size Does anyone else do the same thing? I think the only time I’ve paid full price for shoes is usually if I need it that very weekend for an event or I love it too much to wait @_@ I have too many weak moments
1. Nine West Jimmydee
2. Dune Dewberry Multi Cross Sash Sandal
3. Valentino Flower leather sandals
4. ASOS Princess Peep Toe Court Shoe
5. ALDO Elzie
September 28th, 2010 § § permalink
Image from Getty Images
These are some tips I personally follow, they may not be for everyone but I hope I can help someone who may be sitting in the same boat as me
Sunscreen should be your best friend, use at least SPF 30+ (though I prefer 50+), even in the winter. Or if you are lazy like me, I try to use moisturisers with high SPF levels in them.
Right now I use Clinique’s Super Defense SPF 25 (on to my 2nd tub), it’s not exactly as high as I would like it to be but since I spend 90% of my days indoors (without windows, tragic I know) so isn’t a huge concern of mine. If I know I’ll be outdoors, you can be sure I’ll be throwing on heavier duty sunscreens, such as Chanel’s UV Essential Sunscreen SPF 50.
Unfortunately I haven’t found a sunscreen that doesn’t leave me feeling greasy. (Any recommendations?) Neutrogena’s Ultra Sheet Dry-Touch Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30 applies dry, but my skin quickly feels greasy in under an hour
Soft pinks, corals and peaches will compliment your skin. My favourite combinations are coral / soft pink cheeks. For lips, my favourite is staining my lips, which is when I take some colour to my fingers and rub it into my lips, colour is more subtle and takes longer to wear off. Try this with a medium to slightly dark pink colour.
Define your eyes. Having such dark hair and light skin can be such a strong contrast that it may cause your eyes to almost go unnoticed. A dark eyeliner and mascara should do the trick to get your eyes to pop.
If you have smaller eyes, avoid lining your waterline as it will make your eyes appear even smaller. Be adventurous, you don’t always need to use black, try out dark browns, blues, purples or even greens! Colours similar to Savvy by DB’s Luxury Liners I reviewed a while back are a good idea.
Mascara is a must, it completely opens up your eyes. If you can, coat both your upper and lower lashes. And don’t be afraid to give individual false lashes a whirl, they make a world of difference!
For an evening look, try a brown / bronze smokey eye instead of the traditional black. It’ll look less harsh on your light skin tone if you are going for something a bit more subtle. But if you are feeling bold and want something dramatic, don’t be afraid to go all out, I certainly am not
September 27th, 2010 § § permalink
- No smudging
- Decent length and volume
- Hard to use on lower lashes
- Tends to clump without blotting first
Price: $21.95 AU
Where: Priceline, Myer, David Jones & Chemists
I’ve seen this mascara spammed like there is no tomorrow by Revlon in shops and magazines, and since I was in the market to purchase a new Revlon ColorStay Foundation (cause I got the colour wrong the first time around), I figured I’d throw in an additional product and qualify for the free gift set at David Jones, which included this mascara
I’ll give you the complimentary sandwich review (watch Family Guy if you don’t get this reference!). It’s a good overall mascara. It makes me lashes look thicker and longer and it lasts all day without smudging.
But in a market where there are plenty of mascaras that already do all that, given the hype I was expecting this product to at least WOW me in some way. But nope, it’s just a generally good all round mascara, without any wow factor. Disappointing given how much advertising has been pumped into this mascara.
And whilst it did lengthened my lashes, they didn’t make them as long as I personally would have liked them to be. As for volume, unless you’re a mascara ninja, you may need to blot the brush before application, else say hi to clumps.
One thing I will point out that I did like was the lack of smudging. I wore this for about 12 hours, and it didn’t budge whilst still not being a waterproof mascara (fyi, I really dislike waterproof makeup as I hate using oil based makeup removers), so that is plus in my books. Now if only the formula did something amazing…
Check out Jess’ review on this mascara for a different perspective!
Edit: I reduced the original rating from 4 stars to 3 stars, just because after using this mascara for a mere 1-2 more weeks, I found the formula slowly starting to become very drying and had to throw it out. I much prefer a mascara that gives the same results that last longer than a total of 4-5 weeks
September 24th, 2010 § § permalink
Even though I’ve sketched out many a lookbook there are some evenings after work that all I want to do is chill out and basically… muck around! This is the result, not nearly as “crazy” as I normally get, I didn’t want to scare you guys with some of the… ‘creations’ I end up with? hehe
My favourite part is the blush, you’ll see it clearer in some photos, it’s a sharp cut down using nothing more than sticky tape I’m starting to think sticky tape is now one of my beauty essentials!
How to reproduce:
Apply NARS’ Sheer Flow Foundation in Gobi all over the face, and lighten any shadows with Yves Saint Laurent’s Touche Eclat. Then seal everything with NARS’ Loose Powder in Flesh.
Using two pieces of tape, place them diagonally starting from the side of your lips all the way up to your ear. The angle can be adjusted to whatever you want. Then using MAC’s Powder Blush in Apple Red start from just below your temples and work your way down. You want the most colour saturation to remain closer to your ear and fade out as the tape reaches your lips. Next apply Canmake Highlighter to the apples of your cheeks for an added pop, as well as bridge of your nose, chin and forehead.
Apply NARS’ Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base (my new official favourite primer!) all over the lid.
Then using colours from Coastal Scent’s 88 Ultra Shimmer palette, apply a pink colour just above the crease and purple colour into your crease. Then with a black shadow, apply it into the outer corner of your eye. Finally apply a medium blue colour over your entire lid, and make sure everything is well blended. Each colour should fade into each other seamlessly. Apply a white shimmering shadow to the inner corner of your eye and brow bone. Then apply some of the purple under your lower lashes.
Line your upper and lower lashes with MAC’s Fluidline Blacktrack, be sure to wing out your liner. Curl your lashes and apply two coats of L’Oreal’s Extra Volume Collagene in Black.
Apply NYX’s Lipstick in Snow White all over your lips and coat with Dior’s Addict Plastic Gloss in 854.
September 23rd, 2010 § § permalink
So, how many of us won’t leave the house (you know for work, seeing friends, dinners etc, not counting a grocery run) without using heat to style our hair? I have no idea, but I am definitely one of those people who cannot live without my hair straightener. I’ve probably been straightening my hair (or curling, in other words I use direct heat) around 2-3 times a week for the last 4-5 years. Often I’ll be bad and go without heat protector and I honestly use conditioner like 30% of the time :/ BUT, big but here! I don’t ever dye or bleach my hair! So I figure since I haven’t done that, I should be allowed some flexibility in how I care for my hair Right? *nervous laugh*
Well last weekend I thought I want to try and NOT heat style my hair for one week. It was a big ask, and whilst my hair to me seems healthy and fine (maybe a bit dry), I think I find my obsessive dependency on my hair straightener to be more frightening than anything else In a small way, it does suck to not feel confident and proud without having to styling my hair (let’s not even touch makeup here!)
Happy to say I did it! This is me, with my natural hair, absolutely no heat styling (but I did throw in a bit of gel to stop it from frizzing, baby steps!?)
Sorry for my less than friendly face, I honestly did try and smile, but those photos ended up look a bit goofy :/ lol
It was strangely liberating to go a week without my straightener. I’m sure it could use the break from me, and now I have more time in the mornings to be productive (aka sleep)
As for right now (so 1.5 weeks) I still haven’t touched my straightener, but I DID blow dry my hair straight (in the photos in this post I let my hair dry naturally). I’ll probably embrace my straightener soon, but it’s good to know I can go out and look half way decent without it, plus I can probably use it a bit less too.
Enough of my rambly post, I would love to hear if you guys can relate, don’t leave me feeling like I’m the only addicted nut out there ?
September 22nd, 2010 § § permalink
- Easy to use
- 2 in 1, concealer & setting powder
- Good coverage
- Easy to contaminate
- Can be a bit thick
Where: Myer and David Jones locally, else online places like sNET also sell them.
On my stop over in Singapore, I decided to finally try out the Bobbi Brown concealers (at a fraction of the price in Australia!) as one of my friends Shelia had only good things to say about them.
This is probably my most used concealer, as the coverage is fantastic. It instantly makes me look much more awake! The concealer is very creamy, so it blends like a dream into my skin, great for touching up my makeup too. It comes with translucent powder for setting your concealer and a mini mirror that I use all the time for touching up my makeup on the go.
Normally if I have time I’ll use a brush to apply, though most of the time I don’t have the luxury and just use my fingers! Always always wash your hands before and after using your fingers to apply makeup~
I believe you are suppose to use the Correctors for your under eye circles, but I used this for mine as well as covering up any redness around my nose. Basically I use it for everything, very versatile. (That and I don’t really want to be slathering on a zillion different products)
Most of the time I can go without using the powder, but if I’m doing a shoot and want a flawless look, powder is a must as it really enhances the look.
The major downside is the price point, so I’d recommend shopping online (beware of fakes!) or go duty free when you travel. You only need the tiniest of amounts (esp given how thick it can be, start with less and build up) when using this, so like most concealers, it should last you a very long time!
September 21st, 2010 § § permalink
- 2 in 1, lengthening and volumising
- Solid formula, no flaking or smudging
- Naughty can clump a bit
- Difficult to put the Haute brush back
- Haute’s brush stick seems fragile
Where: MAC Cosmetics
I threw this into my order as I was purchasing some items from the MAC Feline collection, it looked like a neat idea, not to mention I had been testing out Almay’s One Coat Dial Up Mascara which works in a similar sort of way (review coming soon!).
You basically get two types of mascara, though the formula is the same. When you use the wand with the purple base you get a volumising thick mascara. Smooth formula, easy to work with, my only grip is that I think we get a bit too much product at once. So unless you blot the excess product, you may end up clumping up your lashes.
The second mascara is the one with the pink base. It’s basically the same brush, but it sit inside the wand of the purple wand. By pull the thinner wand through the thicker wand it removes a great deal of exceed product, and is suppose to give you a lighter “day time” look.
The idea is great, the execution is also not bad. I find the thinner wand a bit flimsy to work with, and tends to bend a little whilst applying to my upper lashes, applying to my lower lashes would be easier if the brush itself wasn’t so large. Putting the wand back into the tube takes a bit of gentle nudging as it needs to fit back into the smaller opening.
I found myself getting better results with the smaller wand, just because with less product, it gave me more room to really work on achieving the lashes I want. (you can tell in the photos my lashes are longer for the haute wand)
I find with the thicker wand I need to get it right after 2-3 strokes else it will be too clumpy. The formula is exactly the same for both, and honestly whilst that may not have been the focus for this mascara, it was actually pretty good! Not waterproof, but after a day of wear I didn’t experience any flaking or smudging.
But at $42AU, I’d be inclined to say there are cheaper alternatives that do just as well! Especially since mascara tends to go off so quickly. In fact I have one in mind already that will be coming up for review soon And it’s almost at 1/3 of the price too! So stay tuned
September 20th, 2010 § § permalink
I –love- nail polish. I remember my first polish was a $2 bottle of black I found at the $2 shop back when I was 12-13 years old. Over the years, my collection has grown quite a bit, to the point where it is a hassle to trudge through the storage boxes to find a colour I want. As much as I would love to have all my polishes on racks in front of me to pick, I just don’t have the space for that kind of display
I’ve always loved the nail charts you see hanging off the OPI stands in David Jones, and decided that would be the perfect way to select a polish. Not to mention, I’d know exactly what it would look like on my nail =D
I ordered these from TransDesign, and basically apply 2 coats of each of my polishes to the chart and wrote down the brand and colour. This is a great way to organise your polishes and know what colour I want to use without checking each bottle in the box =D Great for polish addicts~
I store my polishes by brand then colour in their boxes, so once I’ve picked the shade I want, grabbing the polish is easy!
My only complaint is for these particular charts, the polish can chip off over time as the ‘nails’ are very smooth. I don’t put a top coat over it because I want to see the true colour and texture of each polish.
Oh well, nothing is perfect! Let me know if you have other storage techniques / methods that work for you, I love learning about how people store / organise their makeup collections And wardrobes too!
September 17th, 2010 § § permalink
Pigtails! That’s the main theme for this look at least, not that you can see them in most of the photos I’ve never been huge at styling hair (the most I do is curl or straighten, nothing fancy), so I’m determined to throw that into my repertoire as well. I didn’t use ANY product for my hair in these photos, hence the frizz. Though I did that on purpose because I was going to bed after this shoot and didn’t want to have to wash my hair when I took a shower hehe
Check out the crystals on my lashes, got these from the many drug stores in Japan
How to reproduce:
Apply one pump of MAC Prep & Prime all over the face, then with a foundation brush apply NARS’ Sheer Glow Foundation in Gobi (eep, this shade is a touch too light for me!). To give myself a flawless look, I decided instead of regular powder, I’d use NARS’ Powder Foundation in Deauville instead
Liberally apply NARS’ Powder Blush in Orgasm, and use Canmake’s Highlighter for my high points.
Prime the eyes with NARS’ Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base (this stuff is amazing!). Then use my 88 Coastal Scents Ultra-Shimmer Palette, apply a light blue all over the lid and crease. Use a medium blue just on and above the crease and under your lower lash line, then a dark blue directly on your outer corner. Use MAC’s Eyeshadow in White Frost for the inner corner of your eyes and balls on your eyelids.
Line your upper lash line with MAC’s Fluidline in Blacktrack, and the waterline with MAC’s Eye Kohl in Fascinating. I didn’t bother apply mascara since I knew my false lashes would be so overwhelmingly thick. Apply false lashes!
Fill in brows with NYX’s Eye / Eyebrow Pencil in Medium Brown.
Apply Maybelline’s Color Sensational Lipstick in Pink Peony and gloss over with NYX’s Gloss in Sparkle.