Herbal Essences The Sleeker The Butter Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner

Published in: Daily Beauty

Herbal Essences The Sleeker The Butter Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner

Herbal Essences The Sleeker The Butter Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner, $3 each

Deep breath. Ah…

I’ve been sniffing my hair a lot today thanks to new Herbal Essences “The Sleeker The Butter” Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner ($3 each). I washed and conditioned with both this morning and, ah…

Sorry, grabbed another sniff. Anyway, where was I?

Oh! Both the shampoo and conditioner contain cupuacu.

Yeah, I have no idea what that is… :) But apparently it’s a tropical tree related to cacao, the chocolate plant, and it’s pretty great at taming wild hair. It also leaves my mane smelling exactly like coconut Life Savers, which, coincidentally, are one of my favorite candies in the whole wide world.

When I was kid, my mom would always let me grab a pack of gum or candy at the grocery store checkout line, and I’d usually go for the Tropical Life Savors. Then I’d eat all of the other flavors and save the coconut ones for last.

Look for The Sleeker The Butter Shampoo and Conditioner at drugstores and online now. A 10.1-oz. bottle of each costs $3.

Herbal Essences The Sleeker The Butter Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner

Herbal Essences The Sleeker The Butter Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner

Like Actual Shadowboxing Is for Boxers, Urban Decay Shadow Box Is Great for Beauty Beginners (and More Experienced Makeup Mavens)

Published in: Eyes, Makeup, Palettes, Product Reviews

Urban Decay Shadow Box

Wearing the new Urban Decay Shadow Box Eyeshadow Palette ($34), available now exclusively at Ulta stores and ulta.com

Urban Decay’s new $34 Shadow Box Eyeshadow Palette has better balance than an advanced yoga class! — and that gives me So. Much. Hope.

I may never be able to achieve perfect balance in my day-to-day life, but with my makeup? Haaay! Girl can get close. :)

Urban Decay Shadow Box

The Urban Decay Shadow Box, $34

With this palette, I’ll be able to push what my makeup-averse friend Cindy calls “my makeup agenda,” and next time I see her and my friend Jen (my two best childhood gal pals), you better believe I’m going to do that.

This is a great one for beginners (makeup-averse friends) and people new to the brand.

Urban Decay Shadow Box

New shades: Indo, Moonshadow and Baked Cowboy; Re-promotes: Sin, Bordello, Tornado, Smog, Blackout, Flash, Mushroom, Lost and Freelove

Jen and Cindy aren’t exactly makeup obsessed, but it’s been my life’s mission to change that. One day, I will be victorious!

Here’s my plan: first, I’ll lure them in with Shadow Box’s stylin’ black and purple case, which houses 12 powder shadows — nine of UD’s bestselling shades and three brand new ones (Indo, Moonshadow and Baked Cowboy).

Next, I’ll hook ‘em with the neutrals, and the browns, black, golds and bronzes. Yup, half of this palette is comprised of everyday shades, which makes it gloriously practical.

Urban Decay Shadow Box Swatches from the left: Sin, Indo (new), Bordello and Tornado

Swatches from the left: Sin, Indo (new), Bordello and Tornado

Urban Decay Shadow Box swatches from the left: Smog, Blackout, Flash and Mushroom

Smog, Blackout, Flash and Mushroom

Urban Decay Shadow Box Swatches from the left: Lost, Freelove, Moonshadow (new) and Baked Cowboy (new)

Urban Decay Shadow Box swatches from the left: Lost, Freelove, Moonshadow (new) and Baked Cowboy (new)


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NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF24: The Stuff of My Most Radiant, Soft Matte Finish Dreams (in Somewhat Tricky Packaging)

Published in: Face, Makeup, NARS, Product Reviews

NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation Broad Spectrum SFP24

Wearing the new NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation Broad Spectrum SFP24 ($48)

Of all my many makeup and beauty pursuits, like the quests for big hair, lush lashes and behaved brows (frickin’ Raul!), the quest for luxurious-looking skin consumes the most time.

I’m always looking for that expensive, luxurious Louis Vuitton skin look…without having to spend Real Housewives of Beverly Hills money.

Polished.

Elegant.

And hella pricey (looking).

Available in 13 shades, the new $48 NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation delivers exactly that, and it’s a revelation, especially when it’s applied with a wet sponge (I use a Beauty Blender).

It’s the stuff of my most radiant, soft matte finish dreams (in somewhat tricky packaging).

NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation light

The light shades

My big fear with powder foundations is that they’ll look thick and heavy on my combination skin, because many of them do, but NARS All Day Luminous does not. The fine, silky powder formula looks and feels lightweight, while the finish falls somewhere between dewy and matte.

Coverage ranges from light to medium, depending on how you apply them. When I use a dry sponge or brush, the coverage is at its lightest. The formula does even out my skin tone a little, but some of the natural redness in my cheeks still peeks through, and I can still see my freckles. Worn this way, the look is super casual.

NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation Medium

The medium shades

NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation Medium Dark

The medium-dark shades

Using a sponge or Beauty Blender to apply them kicks up the coverage a notch. For the highest coverage (medium), I like to apply a 50/50 mix of Stromboli and Tahoe, because together they’re a closer match to my skin tone than any of the 13 individual shades, with a wet Beauty Blender. That keeps my freckles on the down-low and makes sure that no red on my cheeks sneaks through.

I’m definitely partial to applying these with the wet sponge (I use a patting and rolling motion). I think that way the look is more natural.

These don’t take long to apply, either. I can have a full face of foundation applied, blended and done in 3-4 minutes.

NARS All Day Luminous Powder Foundation Swatches

Swatches of all 13 shades


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What Are You Wearing on Your Nails?

Published in: Just For Fun, Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics

Today I’m wearing two coats of Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Nail Lacquer in Distortion ($10), a deep metallic navy from the fall Unknown Pleasures collection, along with Sephora X Base Coat and Shine Top Coat, my current go-to polish protectors.

I did this pretty haphazard mani last Saturday while simultaneously reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone on the couch, and I was at a thrilling “OHMYGOSH!” moment in the book, so I wasn’t really paying close attention to my nails.

You know what though? Sometimes good enough is fine. :)

As for Distortion’s durability, after two and a half full days, tiny chips have already started to appear on the nails of my right hand, but I can’t spite the lacquer for that because I rushed through the application, and I do put my hands through a lot. Lots of typing, testing cleansers and lotions, stuff like that, and I usually don’t (read: almost never) wear gloves when I do the dishes, so there’s also that.

How about you, babe? What are you currently wearing on your nails (and what are you thinking about wearing next)?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,

Karen

P.S. Out of curiosity, what’s the longest lasting nail polish formula you’ve ever tried? So far on my list of long-lasting lacquers, I have OPI, Tom Ford and Dior.

When You Walk Into Ulta for One Thing…

Published in: Daily Photo

…and you walk out with a bag full of things you have deemed “necessities.”

The plan was to run in, grab cotton swabs, and run out.

I actually go through these things pretty fast. I use them to blend the edges of my eye makeup (especially liner on my bottom lash line), to apply lash glue to false lashes (I break them in half and use one of the broken ends without the cotton swab), to fix the edges of my lipstick…so many things.

Since I was already there at Ulta, I figured I might as well pick up a few other things I was also running low on…

And then came the other “Ah, might as well!” purchases, like a 1-inch barrel curling iron, which I’ve wanted for a while to do tighter curls…

And these false lashes by Eyelure, which were buy one, get one 50% off…

And one NYX Jumbo Pencil in Milk (I like these as a base for bright eyeshadow).

Yup, I’ll be right in and out! Just gotta grab one thing. That’s what I always say…

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