Archive - Eyes

Letters to Coco and Reflections on a Chanel Summer, Part 3: Bronze BFFs Forever! Mirage Illusion D’Ombre, Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Ambre Dore, and Tutti Frutti Le Vernis Nail Colour

Published in: Chanel, Collections, Eyes, Makeup, Nails

Chanel Reflets D'Ete De Chanel

Wearing the new Chanel Reflets D’Ete De Chanel summer collection

Letters to Coco

What follows is the final installment of a three-part series of posts titled “Letters to Coco,” a series of letters written in the summer of 2014 from me to my best friend (in my head), Coco Chanel. In this third letter, which features summer collection standouts Mirage Illusion D’Ombre, Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Ambre Dor and Le Vernis Nail Colour in Tutti Frutti, it’s the end of the summer, a few weeks after our trip. :)

My dearest Coco,

You know what they say. Tans fade, but friendships last forever. And you, my friend, are my girl for life.


I can’t believe the summer is almost over. It’s seems like just yesterday we were boarding the plane to the Maldives.

Ah, the Maldives…

I can’t even think about that trip without smiling!

The beach, the waves… Thank you for being such a good sport and getting up at the crack of dawn to go surfing with me. Oh, and uh, also thank you for not telling anybody that I lost my bikini top when I dropped in on that wave.

Whoops! Half-naked surfing. Everyone’s gotta do it at least once in their life, haha.

Geez, barely two weeks back from vacation, and I feel like I need another one. It’s been super stressful (but what else is new?). Tabs is already gearing up for fall — fall! — and I’ve been working cray-cray long hours, but whenever I’m about to lose my sh*t, I just close my eyes and pretend we’re back on the beach with our towels, digging our toes into the sand.

Chanel Mirage and Ambre Dore

Mirage and Ambre Dore

You’re probably going to laugh this, but I’m still wearing your summer collection. In August! I know!

By this time of year, I’m usually hitting up the Trader Joe’s in matte berry lips and full-on smokey eyes.

Chanel Mirage

Illusion D’Ombre Loong Wear Luminous Eyeshadow in Mirage, a bronze ($36)

But I’m just not ready to say goodbye to summer yet.

NO! I still have a tan from our trip (tears!), so I’ve been wearing your bronze cream eyeshadow, Illusion D’Ombre Long Wear Luminous Eyeshadow in Mirage; and your shimmery gold liner, Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Ambre Dore, in an attempt to cling to my memories of our best summer ever.

Chanel Ambre Dore

Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Ambre Dore, a shimmery gold ($32)

Chanel Ambre Dore

Ambre Dore, a shimmery gold

You know, sometimes, Coco, I feel like you just get me. You get my makeup style. Especially with this cream eyeshadow.

My goodness! It’s like the most perfect shimmery bronze I’ve ever worn — or rather, the most perfect buttery bronze, because I think it’s different than a regular orangey bronze, and I love how it works with my caramel coloring.

Chanel Ambre Dore

Illusion D’Ombre in Mirage on my lids and Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner on my lower lash and water lines

And the finish? It’s off the hook, girl! Did you make it this way — so soft and satiny and scintillating — because of that time I complained about how frosty eyeshadows settle into my fine lines? Because the way this catches the light is absolutely perfect.

I’ve been wearing Mirage all over my lids with Ambre Dore Eyeliner on my lower lash and water lines. The warm, shimmery golden tones in Ambre Dore play off the bronze in Mirage really well — no clashing of metallics here!

Chanel Mirage and Ambre Dore

Mirage (left) and Ambre Dore (right)

I’d go so far as to call the Mirage + Ambre Dore combo the best metallic summer eye look of 2014. It’s easy, elegant and I swear to gawd, makes me look 10 years younger.

So, of course, this would not be one of my trademark rambling letters without a nail update. Well, I’ve been wearing Tutti Fruitt Le Vernis Nail Colour, also from your summer collection, to go with my shimmery bronze and gold eyes.

Chanel Le Vernis Nail Colour in Tutti Frutti, a soft coral ($27)

Le Vernis Nail Colour in Tutti Frutti, a soft coral ($27)

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Clinique Lash Power Feathering Mascara Is Not for the Birds, but for Others Who Like a Feathered Fringe

Published in: Clinique, Eyes, Makeup, Product Reviews

Clinique Lash Power Feathering Mascara

Wearing the new Clinique Lash Power Feathering Mascara ($17.50)

The word, “feathering,” in Clinique’s new Lash Power Feathering Mascara makes me think of birds. And birds make me think of jerks. Because that’s what they are. JERKS.

Clinique Lash Power Feathering Mascara

Clinique Lash Power Feathering Mascara in Black Onyx, $17.50

Oh, I’m just cranky because the neighborhood birds completely decimated my radishes.

I filled two large planters with radish seeds (partly because they grow to harvest in 25-30 days, which is quick, and partly because El Hub and I like them in salads), and as soon as they began to sprout the cutest, tiniest little leaves (aww!), the neighborhood birds just tore ‘em up without any regard for my spring planting agenda.

They chewed up the sprouts, destroying every single last one of them, until all that remained were a few sad nubs that will not survive.

Sooooo…no radishes for the nice lady who, incidentally, keeps the bird feeder on the deck filled at all times with yummy birdseed.

Nope. No radishes. Not one.

Anyway…#endrant. On to mascara.

Clinique Lash Power Feathering Mascara brush head

I wanted to try Clinique’s new Lash Power Feathering Mascara mostly because of the marketing hype, which promises “out-to-there” length, and being a mascara hoarder an all, that greatly excited me. :)

Lash Power also promises a feathery soft lash look that lasts 12 hours without smudging, and to be easy to remove using warm water.

After a week of testing, my verdict is in. On Lash Power, I think my fringe does look feather soft. Lash Power does a great job of separating and maintaining a curling. It tends to flake a little if I go beyond crazy with the layering — it does layer exceptionally well, without any clumping or bumps — but other than that, it’s pretty sturdy stuff, and it really does wash off easily with my regular face cleanser and warm water, which is convenient.

As for smudging, as long as I don’t rub at or futz with my eyes, it doesn’t.

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Unsung Makeup Heroes: Chanel Vert Khaki Ombre Essentielle Soft Touch Eyeshadow

Published in: Chanel, Eyes, Unsung Heroes

Chanel Vert Khaki

My “I can’t tell you how happy I am that it’s sunny today!” smile while wearing Chanel’s Vert Khaki on my lids…

I am LOVIN’ this shimmery khaki green eyeshadow, desperately, though I should note that whenever I wear it on my lids, the urge to crank open a fire hydrant so that everyone in the neighborhood can frolic through the spray, perhaps to a choreographed dance routine, befalls me.

(SIDE NOTE: seriously, I have always wanted to do that…)

Chanel Vert Khaki

Chanel Vert Khaki Ombre Essentielle Soft Touch Eyeshadow

Now, I’ll wear khaki greens any time of year, but the warmer months — especially June through August — after I’ve normally darkened a shade or two and it’s like a coral partaaaaay 24/7 on my cheeks and lips, Vert Khaki becomes my BFF. I just love how well it works with juicy, summery corals…

And hot pinks…

And golds and bronzes, too.

Chanel Vert Khaki

Vert Khaki working its magic…

I gotta hand it to Chanel. Their eyeshadow singles cost an arm and a leg, but at least they don’t hold anything back. This one, in particular, looks crazy good!

Even though green eyeshadow can be a huge leap for some, I think Vert Khaki is possibly the closest you can get to a natural-looking khaki green.

Yeah, with this on your lids, it definitely looks like you’re wearing colorful eyeshadow, but it’s not totally in your face.

It’s on your face… :)

LOL! Vert Khaki has some gold in it, along with a touch of warm grayish taupe (which really comes through when you buff it down), and I think those extra touches keep it from looking too out-there-cray, you know what I’m sayin’?

With this on your lids, you won’t feel like people are staring at your green eyeshadow. No, they’ll be admiring your sultry eyes, ooh-la-lah.

Chanel Vert Khaki

Also wearing MAC Warm Soul blush on my cheeks and Hourglass Nectar Lip Gloss on my lips…

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Clinique High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara and a Good Morning Routine Just Might Make for a Great Frickin’ Day

Published in: Clinique, Eyes, Makeup, Product Reviews

Clinique High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara

Wearing two coats of Clinique High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara ($19.50) on my upper and lower lashes

This post is first and foremost a review of Clinique’s High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara ($19.50)…

Clinique High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara

Clinique High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara, $19.50

…but before we get to that, I just need to say, DUDE. Seriously, if you are not a morning person, I get it. I totally get it. Weekday mornings?! Ugh, mine are almost always rough — rough like that sketchy off-brand toilet paper El Hub always buys, even though I’ve told him about a billion times that “Charmin Ultra Soft is the only way to go.” (Note to self: stop asking that man to buy toilet paper.)

When my alarm sounds, I open my eyes and start mentally ticking off the things I want to do that day (good grief, why is that list always so hella long?!). Oftentimes, even before I get out of bed, a sense of panic has set in…

But ya know, gotta get up. Gotta get going. Can’t hide under the covers, as tempting as that sounds sometimes.

You know how it is. Some mornings you’re faced with a choice — a choice between indulging your inner grumpy goat and letting her wreak havoc, or doing everything in your power to have a GREAT FRICKIN’ DAY!

I usually shoot for the latter (not always successfully, mind you), and most of the time when things work out fairly well, I seem to have followed a morning routine very similar to this one:

  • I get out of bed right when the alarm goes off, versus hitting the snooze button and falling back to sleep. If I hit the snooze, even if it’s just for 10 more minutes, I may get up feeling groggy.
  • I have my first cup of coffee and quickly get a little food in my tum
  • I get my booty in motion by either walking or running on the treadmill for at least 20 minutes, during which time I’ll listen to some upbeat music and/or mull over what I want to accomplish that day.
  • I primp and do whatever I can to feel cute — taking a shower, fixing my hair, applying makeup (this morning I filled in my brows, applied under-eye concealer, some High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara on my upper and lower lashes, and lipgloss) and picking an outfit that isn’t likely to be 1) mistaken for workout wear or 2) ratty pajamas.

More often than not, when I follow this routine, I have a pretty good day.

How about you? What’s your “good day” morning routine like? :)

Now, on to Clinique’s High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara…

Clinique’s High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara has actually been on counters for a while, but I only just recently gave it a try. With its oversized brush, it’s designed for dramatic lashes with extreme thickness and volume, and safe for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers. It’s also available in two shades — 01 Extreme Black, which is the color I’ve been wearing, and 02 Black — both available now at Clinique counters and

So, my natural lashes? Well, let’s just that they don’t stop traffic. They probably wouldn’t even stop a slow-moving Radio Flyer Red Wagon, LOL! They’re mediocre at best — not too long, thick, full, nor curly. Just…there.

Mascara is an everyday must for me, and the more extreme, the better. So, yeah, I was all over this stuff as soon as I read the name on the tube — Clinique High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara.

Clinique High Impact Extreme Volume Mascara Brush

Long, oversized brush with small, stubby bristles

What’s the lash look?

Two or three coats deliver thick, glossy fringe, without any clumps or crispiness, but I’d be hesitant to call the look, “extreme.” More like “lush, but not dramatic. Like something I’d wear if I wanted a natural look, but FYI: my idea of natural lashes is what a drag queen would wear on her day off. :)

Also, it doesn’t lift a lash curl as much as I usually like, but since it isn’t billed as a lash-curling mascara, that’s no big whoop.

Staying power and removal?

As long as I don’t rub my eyes or futz with them, I get about 8-10 hours without a smudge or flake.

That’s good.

Removal’s also easy. I don’t even have to use a separate eye makeup remover. My regular, and always dependable, Neutrogena Gentle Cleanser and warm water does the trick.
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For Full, Lush Brows That Even a Werewolf Would Envy, Try the New Too Faced Brow Envy Kit

Published in: Eyes, Makeup, Palettes, Too Faced

Too Faced Brow Envy Kit

Here I’ve used the new $39 Too Faced Brow Envy Kit on my brows (I’m also wearing MAC Moxie Lipstick)

Modern Werewolf MagazineRing! Ring!

KAREN: Hello, this is Karen.

CAITLIN GREY-FANG: Hi, Karen, this is Caitlin Grey-Fang of Modern Werewolf Magazine. How are you today?

KAREN: Great. How ’bout yourself?

CAITLIN: Excellent. I’m calling to first introduce myself and say hello. I’m Modern Werewolf’s new beauty editor, and I was referred to you by Tabs the cat.

KAREN: Oh, hello. It’s nice to meet you.

CAITLIN: I’m writing a story for our blog on that I hope you can help me with.

KAREN: Let me guess — body hair removal? ‘Cause, GURL, I could talk about that FOR DAYS!

CAITLIN: Actually, no. But the next time I do a hair removal story, I’ll be sure to call you. I was actually wondering if you had a moment to talk about brows.

KAREN: I most certainly do! It’s a subject near and dear to my heart. How can I help you?

CAITLIN: Well, as you know, most werewolves are blessed with big, lush brows, which is currently on-trend in the beauty world; however, there are a subset of lycanthropes who do need a little help when it comes to faking full brows.

I was wondering if you could offer a few thoughts on the new $39 Too Faced Brow Envy Kit. I hear from my colleagues that you’re a fan of the line, so I figured I’d call you for the 411?

Too Faced Brow Envy Brow Shaping & Defining Kit

Too Faced Brow Envy Brow Shaping & Defining Kit, $39

KAREN: Sure! What a coincidence. I’m actually wearing Brow Envy today.

CAITLIN: Excellent! So tell me about it. Is it already out? And what does it do exactly?

KAREN: OK. Well, it was recently released with the Too Faced summer 2014 collection, and it’s available now at Too Faced counters and online for $39.

It comes with a couple of brow powders, a cream highlighter, a setting wax and several tools, like a tiny tweezers, a small angled brush, a spoolie and some stencils, although — how can I put this? — it’s my understanding that some werewolves prefer the look of a single strong brow.

CAITLIN: A unibrow? Yes, that is the fashion in some packs.

Too Faced Brow Envy

Brow Envy Brow Shaping & Defining Kit, $39

KAREN: Alright. Well, I suppose that if one wanted to create that look, they could do so pretty easily freehand using the products in this kit.

CAITLIN: Great! Could you explain a little for our readers how you use the palette?

KAREN: It’s easy. You fill in your brows with either the Brunette or Blonde powder, or you could even mix both if you’d like, and then set your brows with the setting wax to keep them in place.

Then, kind of as an added bonus, if you want to emphasize the arch in your brows, you can take the pink matte highlighter, run it just beneath the bottom of your brows, and blend, blend, blend.

As for the stencils, well, the idea is to use them to outline your desired brow shape by placing one directly on top of your brows and filling it in, but, truth be told, I never use stencils because the shapes always fit funky on me, so I just freehand it, and I’d recommend your werewolf readers do the same.

CAITLIN: When it gets right down to it, how do you think this palette performs? Do you think a werewolf with sparse brows would be able to get the full look he or she wants?

Too Faced Brow Envy Brow Shaping & Defining Kit

Brow Envy Brow Shaping & Defining Kit swatches from the left: Blonde, Brunette, Highlighter and Setting Wax

KAREN: Based on how it performs on humans, I’d say yes, they would. I’ve been using it for about a week now, and one of the things I really like about it is how quickly you can darken your brows with it because of how much pigment the powders pack. My brow hairs are naturally quite dark and, frankly, I was afraid that the Brunette shade wouldn’t do anything for me, but it does! It’s actually pretty intense.

I do have to say, though, that the setting wax and highlighter may not have enough “oomph” for some of the werewolves I’ve seen on TV. The wax doesn’t really have a lot of hold at all — either that, or my brow hairs are way too unruly, LOL! And the highlighter is awfully subtle.

Oh! And if your fur is red or silver, you’re kind of S.O.L. here, as the kit only comes with Brunette and Blonde powders.

CAITLIN: Can I get your take on the tools?

KAREN: Yeah, I’d probably only use ‘em in a pinch. The tiny angled brush is difficult to use and imprecise, and the tiny tweezers and spoolie, while cute, might be too small for larger werewolf…hands? Paws?

Too Faced Brown Envy Kit

Additional makeup in this look: Liner is Urban Decay Super-Saturaed Ultra Intense Waterproof Cream Eyeliner in Perversion, lips are MAC Crosswires lipstick, cheeks are MAC Cantaloupe blush

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