Sunday, January 29, 2012

Lazy Sunday 1.29.12

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Top 5: Makeup Staples

I love the creative aspect of making; playing with eyeshadow color and shapes, bizarre lip color, and even creating casual daytime looks. Like most art forms though, makeup requires a few basics that set the stage for sultry eyes and sexy lips to steal the show. Here are five products that work "backstage" to create the base for all of my makeup looks that I wouldn't be able to live without.

1. Makeup Forever HD Foundation 
$40 at Sephora

I used to use MAC foundation (Select SPF15 formula, and then later switched to Studio Sculpt.) It did the job for a while, but I started to notice that my face tended to look very glossy in photos and that I would feel greasy at the end of the day. I heard good things about Makeup Forever's HD foundation so after my last tube of Studio Sculpt ran out I decided to give that a shot instead. Switching from a gel based formula to a liquid took a bit of getting used to at first, but after I experimented with my application method a bit I fell in love with this foundation and I don't regret my switch at all. My skin appears smooth and clear and most importantly, natural, in photographs and in person all day, and never slimy. 

2. Too Faced Eyeshadow Insurance 
$18 at Sephora

Yet another tale of switching from one product to another, I used to be a member of the cult of Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion for eyeshadow bases. While "UDPP" as it's lovingly referred to among many internet makeup communities is still definitely a great choice for a base, it had some major flaws in it's packaging. Namely, having to cut the damned thing open in order to get half the product. Urban Decay has since switched to a more economical packaging, but I doubt I'll be going back to them. I got Eyeshadow Insurance in a Too Faced gift pack (which are awesome, and usually great bargains. I highly suggest keeping an eye out for them) and I instantly liked the formula better than UDPP which tends to be a bit on the dry side, Eyeshadow Insurance is a creamier formula and I almost never had a problem with creasing or wandering eyeliner.

3. MAC Blacktrack Fluidline Gel Eyeliner 

When applied it looks like liquid, but it's actually a gel formula and it's great for subtle lash-line darkening or dramatic winged liner. What brush you use is a matter of preference, I actually use either a watercolor brush or a lip liner brush depending on what I'm going for, but a small angled brush is a favorite for many people. I love this because it goes on very, very black and you have a lot of control over the thickness of the line. My only complaint is that the jar tends to dry out before I can use all of it. 

4. Too Faced Primed and Poreless Powder
$28 at Sephora

In theater, actors wear tons of makeup so that their features can be seen even by the audience in the back. The foundation used in theater is usually very greasy and can rub off on costumes or melt under stage lights, so they're loaded up with powder to create a barrier between the makeup and... anything else. For daily makeup wear, the same concept is often overlooked which can lead to foundation wearing off as the day goes on. It's amazing what a layer of powder can do to increase the staying power of foundation and eyeshadow and it takes away that greasy feeling that can come with liquid foundation. Too Faced's Primed and Poreless powder is the best finishing powder I've tried, it leaves my skin feeling smooth and has a light diffusing property that erases the shine in photographs. Anyone who currently uses liquid foundation should definitely pick up some finishing powder, trust me when I say that you'll be glad you did. 

5. Covergirl Lashblast Mascara
$6.94 at Target

One of few drugstore products that are by far better than any high brand I've tried, Covergirl's Lashblast has been my favorite mascara for years. Despite having had a few torrid love affairs with some other mascaras, I always find myself coming back to Lashblast. The brush makes sure it never clumps. Ever. Application is smooth and the color is dark and sexy. Unfortunately the large handle makes it a little bit awkward to apply at first, and I usually use a disposable brush to apply it to my bottom lashes because otherwise I end up stabbing myself in the eye. 

What are some staples of your  makeup routine? Tell me in the comments!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Black 'n Blue 'n Polka Dots

Blazer: Macy's
Blouse: The Limited
Skirt: Rafaella
Shoes: Target
Accessories: Betsey Johnson, Express

I'm sorry for the cell-phone picture, believe me when I say it is extremely difficult to take decent pictures in a dorm room, especially when there is a tree directly outside your window blocking any potential light. And going outside means braving cold, white death.

The Internet Goes on Strike Today

In case you haven't heard, today major websites such as Reddit and Wikipedia have blacked out in protest of SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIPA (Protect IP Act.) Other major websites have taken smaller steps in protest. Tumblr is giving users the option of blacking out their individual blogs for the day, and 4Chan has censorship bars across all content. While this is certainly frustrating (especially for someone who Reddits all day during class) it's only a taste of what could happen to the internet if these make it through.

Resources and More Information:

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Top 5 Style Inspirations: Kim Kardashian

The following is a five-part series on my biggest style inspirations, real and fictional. I've never been one for spot-on trying to copy another person/character/celebrity's outfit, I tend to aim more for the realm of "close enough" because I believe that style should first and foremost be self expression. Of course, it's never a bad idea to draw inspiration from those you admire. Thus, in this series my aim so to create sample outfits that are influenced by my inspirations, but not exact copies of what they're wearing. 

Say what you will about her intelligence or reasons for being famous, I still think Kim Kardashian is absolutely gorgeous. I love seeing celebrities with killer curves, and I take a lot of inspiration from Kim's style because her body is much closer to mine than most other well-known celebrities. Snaps of Kim on the street often show her wearing high-waisted skirts paired with blouses but at special events she wears gorgeous dresses. Glamorous, sophisticated and sexy sum up Kim's style pretty well, all of which I strive to reflect in my style, which is why Kim is one of my top five style inspirations.

(Blouse, Shoes, Earrings, Belt, Skirt, Tights)
This outfit uses an entirely neutral palette and mixes dress pieces like diamond earrings and a shiny blouse with casual pieces like a slouchy bag and leather belt. It's definitely a versatile ensemble, and could easily be worn to class or a nice dinner.

(Earrings, Purse, Dress, Belt, Shoes)
Leopard print can be tricky to pull off without looking trashy, but when done right I think it's very glamorous looking. The key is to balance the rest of the outfit with another neutral (in this case, black) with a few hints of gold, but the print is still the star of the show.

What do you think of Kim's style? Or the Kardashian craze in general? Tell me in the comments!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Jason Wu For Target Collection Picks

Admittedly, Missoni for Target did next to nothing for me. The whole tribal-esque print thing just is not my style at all, so I suppose I was lucky that the commotion that collection caused didn't affect me in the least. I was pretty freaking stoked when Target announced they would be doing another designer collaboration though, this time with Jason Wu. Target posted the official lookbook on their Facebook page yesterday. The collection consists of many very feminine pieces, and a lot of subtle color blocking. I'm not exactly chomping at the bit for this collection either, but unlike the Missoni collection there are actually a few pieces that I could see myself incorporating into my wardrobe.

Here are my favorite picks for the Jason Wu for Target collection. You can view the entire lookbook and prices here.

I love the sophisticated but feminine feel of this look, I'd have to say it's my favorite from the entire collection. That peach blouse looks very soft and billowy, and I've been dying for lace pencil skirt for a while now. 

I'm loving navy blue with floral prints for spring, and I can never have too many high-waisted skirts. The red blouse looks lovely, but tops tend to be a bit fussy on me so I'll have to examine it further before passing final judgement.
Yet another sophisticated feminine look. Though someone commented on the Target Facebook page that this looks like Colonel Sanders and now I cannot unsee. 

If I manage to get my grubby paws on it (and also if it can fit all the crap I carry around) this will likely end up being my spring purse this year. 

What are your thoughts on the Jason Wu collection for Target? Tell me in the comments!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Leopard Print

Necklace: Unknown
Earrings, Watch: Betsey Johnson
Top, Shoes: Target
Skirt: Forever 21

Wore this to class today. I was planning on wearing my garterbelt instead of tights, but to my extreme horror my nude stockings had a run in them already and that just would not do at all. I have work later tonight, so I'll probably switch the skirt out for some darkwash jeans and wear a brown camisole underneath the top so I have a bit less, er, décolletage.

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