Unsung Makeup Heroes: Dolce & Gabbana Contrasts Eyeshadow Quad

Published in: Dolce & Gabbana, Eyes, Palettes, Unsung Heroes

Dolce Gabbana Contrasts

Wearing the Dolce & Gabbana Contrasts Eyeshadow Quad

contrast n. |kon-trast|
1 The state of being strikingly different from something else, typically something in juxtaposition or close association : tabs has been unusually nice to me today, in startling contrast to his behavior yesterday.

contrast v. |kon-trast|
2 Differ strikingly : contrast my hair today with my hair of the 1990s, and be like whoa!

Do you ever think about how you got your name, or do you know the actual story?

Dolce & Gabbana’s Contrasts Eyeshadow quad has me thinking about names…

Dolce & Gabbana Contrasts Eyeshadow Quad 2

KarenI was named after the actress Karen Black, but my mom almost named me Stephanie, which I can’t even begin to imagine… Not that I don’t like the name. I do. It’s just that when I look in the mirror, I don’t see a Stephanie, Steph or Steffie. Nope. Does not compute.

Funny, though, that last weekend I met a gal at the Bliss Spa who said that she didn’t think I looked like a Karen. She thought maybe a Leah, Leilani or a Lorelei. Something with an L, and I can kinda see that. Definitely more than Stephanie.

Dolce & Gabbana Contrasts Eyeshadow Quad 3

Anywho, I think whoever named Dolce & Gabbana’s Constrasts quad knocked it out of the park, since it really is strikingly different from the other everyday quads in my stash of staples.

If I could, I’d give that gal/guy a banana split with extra scoops of ice cream, whipped cream and cherries, because they nailed it!

And then, if he/she wanted, I’d go running with them, so we could burn off the calories and talk more about Constrasts. :)

The long-running Unsung Heroes series features some of my favorite permanent collection products from a variety of bodacious beauty brands.

This quad is a total workhorse, one I could easily see myself wearing daily, and yet it’s unlike the usual brown/beige/taupe/gray neutral suspects we see a lot.

Starting with the colors, ohmigosh! Inside the golden compact hides four potently pigmented powder shadows that you can easily take from day to night — a golden pinkish peach (a favorite for dusting all over my lids when I’m in a hurry because it brightens everything up), a pinkish beige, a warm purple and a plummy dark chocolate.

Versatile and flattering on many different skin tones, and just hella pretty.

Dolce Gabbana Contrasts Quad Swatches

From the left: shimmery golden pink, shimmery pinkish beige, shimmery plum and shimmery plummy brown (looks like a MAC Teddy in eye shadow form)

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The Four Glittery New MAC Temperature Rising Lipglasses Turn Up the Heat on Summer Eye Looks

Published in: Lips, MAC Makeup, Makeup, Product Reviews

MAC Soft Serenade Lipglass

Soft Serenade Lipglass

“It was a steamy night — hot like Manila in July — and I was feeling naughty.”

That could either be the beginning of a bad piece of pulp fiction or a commercial for MAC’s new 28-piece summer collection, Temperature Rising. Either way, it sounds hot, right?

MAC Temperature Rising Lipglasses from the left: Liquid Passion, Soft Serenade, Underdressed and Rhythm

From the left: Liquid Passion, Soft Serenade, Underdressed and Rhythm

If last year’s dimpled, cheerful Hey Sailor was a celebration of pin-up girl fun in the sun, this year’s Temperature Rising is like meeting a boy at a dubstep club and dancing your @ss off past curfew.

Steamy neutrals, feverish flecks of gold and copper and sizzling taupe, peach, magenta and charcoal set this new 28-piece collection ablaze.

It’s hot stuff! — and I want to watch it burn all day and night…

MAC Temperature Rising Lipglasses from the left: Liquid Passion, Soft Serenade, Underdressed and Rhythm

From the left: Liquid Passion, Soft Serenade, Underdressed and Rhythm

Stay hydrated, because the four Lipglasses ($16.50 each) in this launch can cause overheating, especially if you like wearing neutral lips with bold summer eyes.

Together, creamy nude Liquid Passion (like a peachier version of Spite); pearly, neutral pink Soft Serenade; pearly, plummy bronze Underdressed and pearly magenta-violet Rhythm complete an entire wardrobe of neutral summer lips, covering you for everything from bronze smokey eyes to eye looks with shimmery blues and greens.

MAC Temperature Rising Lipglass Swatches from the left: Liquid Passion, Soft Serenade, Underdressed and Rhythm

Swatches from the left: Liquid Passion, Soft Serenade, Underdressed and Rhythm

MAC Liquid Passion Lipglass

Liquid Passion Lipglass

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Makeup and Beauty Blog Monday Poll, Vol. 260

Published in: Just For Fun

The Makeup and Beauty Blog Monday Poll for February 25, 2013

Taking a break from hiking at the Indian Valley Open Space Preserve in Novato, California

You might be wondering, “So what the heck is this Monday Poll thing anyway?”

Well, it isn’t much of a poll. It’s more just a constantly evolving (devolving?), somewhat random list of questions I’ve been putting out to readers every Monday morning for the past four years. I’ve always enjoyed reading your answers in the comments, and I hope you enjoy reading mine.

  1. What’s a makeup brand you’ve been into lately?
  2. Dresses, skirts or pants?
    Dresses when it’s warm, pants when it’s cold.
  3. Do you like pastel nails?
    I do. :) Shiny, opaque pastel nails, please.
  4. Describe one of your typical makeup looks for work?
    Typical? That’s not exactly the word I’d use to describe what I usually wear to work. As I work from home, my neighbors have seen quite a few interesting things through my office window over the years — Wonder Woman, Marge Simpson, Katy Perry, Katniss Everdeen and a whole ton of stuff involving a chubby tabby cat.

    I always seem to get caught/noticed when I’m testing multiple products at the same time, which I do a lot, I’ll be sitting at my desk with, say, cat eyes and a bright cheek on one side of my face and smokey eyes and bronzer on the other.

    If I had a nickel for every time the postman saw me looking completely insane (I’d have a LOT of nickels)…

  5. Rainbow suspenders?
    Um, no. Not unless I’m starring in Office Space, and they’re holding my 25 pieces of flair.
  6. What was the highlight of your weekend?
    Sunday, from start to finish. Sunday was an A+ day. I slept in, made breakfast (pancakes, and eggs over easy), and then El Hub and I went for a long hike around the Indian Valley Open Space Preserve here in Novato.

    It was so sunny and warm and just felt great to be outside.

  7. If you had to make a major life change, would you prefer to ease your way into it and take baby steps, or dive in all at once?
    All at once. I’d rather just get it over with.
  8. Where were you in 1999?
    I was in my early 20s, living in San Francisco and working as a legal assistant at a law firm.

    Not one of my favorite years… I felt like I was in constant upheaval, starting with the move to the city, living with roommates I didn’t know before moving in with them, working at a job I didn’t particularly like. Bluh.

  9. What’s something you’re grateful for today?
    Sunshine! It makes everything better.
  10. Write yourself an nice note.
    Karen, “Remember, one thing at a time. Don’t give up. You can do it.” :)

To complete the Monday Poll, just copy the following list, and paste it with your answers in the comments.

Le List

1. What’s a makeup brand you’ve been into lately?
2. Dresses, skirts or pants?
3. Do you like pastel nails?
4. Describe one of your typical makeup looks for work?
5. Rainbow suspenders?
6. Highlight of your weekend?
7. Do you prefer taking baby steps or diving in all at once?
8. Where were you in 1999?
9. Something you’re grateful for today?
10. Write yourself a nice note.

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


Power Up With the Four Resplendent Reds From the New Tom Ford Beauty Jasmine Rouge Lip Collection

Published in: Lips, Makeup, Product Reviews, Tom Ford Beauty

tom ford narcotic rouge

Wearing the new Tom Ford Beauty Lipstick in Narcotic Rouge

For real, though? — never underestimate the power of a rich red lipstick and cat eyeliner.

This morning I woke up feeling like I had molasses in my head. Words hard. Bad brain. Thinking difficult.

Not even a pitcher of coffee could have fixed the way I felt. I needed the big guns, so out came MAC Blacktrack and the new Tom Ford Beauty Jasmine Rouge Lip Collection.

Everything started coming into focus as soon as I saw that black gel liner on my eyes and those rollicking red lipsticks on my lips. Shoot, even those funny symbols (letters) and sounds (words) we use to communicate started making sense. :)

tom ford holiday 2012 lipsticks

Clockwise from the lower left: Reckless, Diabolique, Narcotic, Slander

tom ford holiday 2012 swatches

Swatches from the left: Reckless, Diabolique, Narcotic, Slander

tom ford slander

Tom Ford Beauty Lipstick in Slander

tom ford diabolique

Tom Ford Beauty Lipstick in Diabolique

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Bond Girl Makeup Looks Inspired by the OPI Skyfall Collection: From The World Is Not Enough, Elektra King

Published in: Eyes, Face of the Day (FOTD), MAC Makeup, Makeup, Makeup Tips/How To, Nails, OPI

An Elektra King Bond Girl makeup look

An Elektra King Bond girl makeup look inspired by the OPI Skyfall collection nail polish in The World Is Not Enough


“Yes, M?”



“No, James, I mean it. This Tabs character is…dangerous. This whole playboy tabby supermodel persona of his is just a cover. We know he’s up to something… We just don’t know what it is yet.”

“What do we know about his current location?”

“We know you’re close. He was spotted last night at a Petco in Novato, and we expect him to return there tonight. He appears to have a penchant for gravy…”

“Doesn’t everyone?”

“I want you to be there when he arrives at the Petco tonight.”


“Bring him in, James. I want you to stop that cat.”

. . .

T-minus four days till the new Bond movie unleashes suave justice on American movie goers and I. CAN’T. WAIT.

I grew up on a steady diet of James Bond. :) Both of my parents loved the movies, and when I was a kid, whenever a new one would come out, my folks would pack us all up in the car, and take us to the local drive-in.

Yep, I said drive-in. We used to have an actual drive-in movie theater in our town (some years ago the lot was turned into a strip mall).

Skyfall, the latest film in the Bond franchise, opens this Friday nationwide, and OPI recently released a new 12-piece Bond movie-inspired nail polish collection of the same name.

I was taking a shower the other day when I thought, wouldn’t it be fun to do a series of makeup looks inspired by Bond girls and the colors in the new OPI Skyfall collection?

Yes, yes, I think it would. :)

Elektra KingAnd for the first one, how about Elektra King? She plays cat and mouse with Bond in 1999′s The World Is Not Enough.

It’s not one of my favorite Bond films — I cracked up laughing at the pained expression Pierce Brosnan makes in the unintentionally funny seduction/torture scene below — but I love, LOVE the nail polish based on the movie in the Skyfall collection!

OPI The World Is Not Enough

OPI The World Is Not Enough from the Skyfall collection

It’s a shimmery purplish taupe with tiny flecks of glitter, and it looks almost like a silvery khaki sometimes, depending on the light.

So beautiful…

opi the world is not enough swatch

Wearing three coats of OPI’s The World Is Not Enough (but you could probably get away with two)

In the 1999 movie, Elektra King is played by the gorgeous Sophie Marceau. There’s a scene during which she puts JB through hell while wearing a sultry smokey eye and a full-length purple, taupe and black gown — you know, because when you’re inflicting pain upon an international super spy, why settle for sweats?

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