Thursday, April 30, 2009

Revamp Your Beauty Routine

Apparently it’s beauty day as I discuss some ways to revamp/update your go-to beauty toolkit…

With the seasons changing and it becoming a (tiny) bit warmer, it’s a great time to revamp your spring makeup palette. Now, I’m no makeup expert, but I do know what works for me—and many of the products I like and have recommended to others they’ve liked, too.

I am not advocating that every single product you purchase be pricey, although I think in some cases spending a bit more can make your makeup routine a little luxe—but not so luxe that you don’t have a few bucks left! Plus, these products last a long time, so while you think $28 is expensive for a cheek tint, the product typically lasts as long as anywhere from six months to a year-plus. Put in those terms, your makeup’s only costing like seven cents a day for a year’s use. To me, that’s worth it!

The other reason I pay a bit more for (certain) products is that for me, they have tried-and-true excellent quality that works better than the drugstore version. It’s kind of like dating—every dude you meet won’t be a perfect match—you’ve got to try what works for you until you find what you’re looking for!

For a lightweight, fresh foundation I use Neutrogena’s products—either the Glow Sheers or the Healthy Skin Enhancer, which are both affordable AND good for skin. For more coverage I just discovered Maybelline’s Dream Liquid Mousse foundation—which really evens my skin out and doesn’t look mask-like. Bonus: this one’s WAY affordable—like $8 affordable!

For summer you want makeup that lasts through sweat and hot temps, right? The latest miracle product I’ve discovered is Urban Decay’s Eyeshadow Primer Potion. Seriously, this stuff makes your eye makeup last for twelve hours. I’ve worked out after work and my eye shadow still looks perfect after sweating! This stuff is magic—before, my eye shadow would fade and crease by noon—after discovering and using this product, my eye shadow stays put until I take it off at night. Love it. At $17 it’s not the cheapest product out there but it’s definitely worth it if you want a fresh eye makeup look all day. I highly recommend it.

Another long-lasting product? Dior’s Diorshow waterproof mascara in black is a must-have, hands down. I have tried so many drugstore mascaras attempting to replicate the same thick, clump-free look of Dior’s mascara and haven’t been able to find that same quality. For bottom lashes though, Maybelline’s less-expensive Great Lash waterproof mascara in Very Black works excellently, and the brush is smaller to reach those harder-to-reach lashes.

I have advocated this product before, but Benefit’s Benetint is awesome. At $28 for a nail polish-sized bottle it’s not the cheapest product, but it last for over a year. Its tagline—“the most natural flush you can get from a bottle”—rings true if you’ve tried it. It’s a lightweight, long-lasting product that gives your face a little perk whenever you need it.

Finally to incorporate a little trendiness into my summer look I purchased Smashbox’s eye shadow in Safari—a lovely deep khaki/green color with a hint of gold shimmer in it. At $16 it’s not as affordable as a $4 Cover Girl eye shadow but the color is a lot more intense and you’ll use less of it when applying. I also recommend Napoleon Perdis’ loose eye shadow dust in color 37—a sexy champagne nude color that’s perfect as a shimmery eye accent on top of an eye shadow or in the inner corners of the eye. Napoleon Perdis is sold locally at PREP Cosmetics.

I’ve been having a bit of seventh-grade nostalgia—in my nail polish preferences, that is. My favorite colors back then were silver, white, neon orange, neon green and royal blue. Most of these polishes were by Wet ‘n Wild and at 99 cents, they were an indulgence I could afford back then. My color tastes have grown up a little bit this time around—though I was sporting a sunshine-y yellow a week ago ☺.

The colors I’ll be sporting this summer include gray, nude, yellow, safari green, tropical blue and deep plum, and they all reflect summer trends right now.

We’re seeing gray and nude in clothing as well as accessories—gray and nude scarves and shoes for example, are a hot ticket, while celebs seem to be sporting nude sparkly cocktail dresses left and right. Consequently Sally Hansen's nude (not shown) and Pure Ice's "Kiss Me Here" polishes are my go-tos for nude and gray shades for the nails.

The green color I purchased—“Camouflage” by Rimmel—is a direct reflection of the tribal/safari trend that’s going on. Items like multistrand necklaces, chunky bangles, maxidresses and even crazy headbands have all made their presence known in stores.

Of course bright colors always make a comeback come summer—shades like sunny yellow ("Lightening" by Sally Hansen) and aquatic blue ("Marine Scene," Sally Hansen again!) reinforce our need to have a little brightness in our lives—right down to our fingernails.

Deep plum is a holdover from our darker, winter days—but I can’t seem to let the dark colors go. As far as nail polish, dark shades are still popular and fit right in with urban/rocker looks for summer: studded purses; racerback, embellished tanks; skinny jeans; metallic pieces and gladiator heels. "Uptempo Plum" by Sally Hansen offers me a glimpse of the dark side.

Find most of the makeup above at Sephora, 71 West Towne Mall. 827-5958.

Napoleon Perdis available at Prep, 553 State St. 442-3366.

Nail polishes available at local drugstores.

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