Archive - Face

Quick Blush Tip: When You Apply Blush, Angle Your Head to the Side, Instead of Looking Straight Into the Mirror

Published in: Face, Makeup Tips/How To

Try this...

Try this…

...Instead of this

…instead of this

As the world turns…so turns my head! Now. When I apply blush.

I had a “forehead, meet desk!” moment when this occurred to me, as obvious as it sounds, but up until it did, I was usually looking straight ahead into a mirror when I applied my blush, starting with the brush at the apples of my cheeks and pulling back toward my temples.

For me, this made sense — looking straight ahead into a mirror — because it’s also how I apply my foundation, eye makeup and lip products.

So why wouldn’t it be any different for blush?

Well…when you think about it, how often does someone look at you from directly straight ahead like that? Sometimes, but not always, right? Chances are still good that when Nick Jonas sees you from across that crowded room, he’ll be admiring your blush blending skills from many different angles, and not just the front. He’ll be seeing you from the sides, too. (P.S. I expect an invite to your wedding.)
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MAC Studio Waterweight Foundation Followup: MAC Studio Waterweight Versus MAC Face and Body

Published in: Face, MAC Makeup

mac studio waterweight face and body

Today I’m putting on Waterweight!

Wait — that didn’t come out right… I mean, let’s put on our bathing suits, and take a dip back into the water with MAC Studio Waterweight foundation.

Hmm… That wasn’t much better, was it?

Anyway! Since my review a couple days ago, I’ve gotten some questions here on MBB and on YouTube about how the new MAC Studio Waterweight Foundation compares to MAC Face and Body, so I’m gonna try to answer those questions in this quick followup now.

Down below are also swatches of 21 of the 25 Waterweight shades (not shown are NC 25, NW 50, N12 and N18).

In a nutshell, Studio Waterweight is MAC’s foray into the world of serum foundation — medium coverage, with a lightweight, moisturizing formula and a velvety finish. My combination skin and I have been wearing it daily for the past week, and we’re really happy with it so far!

mac studio waterweight nc shades

10 of the 11 MAC Studio Waterweight NC shades from the left: NC15, NC20, NC30, NC35, NC37, NC40, NC42, NC45 and NC50

mac studio waterweight nw shades

11 of the 14 MAC Studio Waterweight NW shades from the left: NW13, NW15, NW18, NW20, NW22, NW25, NW30, NW35, NW43, NW45, NW47, NW50, N12 and N18

One of the main things MAC Studio Waterweight and Face and Body have in common is texture. They both have a similarly thin, watery texture, but I think the similarities really end there. They differ in terms of finish, their ability to blur pores, their coverage and their durability.


I’ve used Face and Body for years, and one thing I’ve always liked about it is how fresh and clean my skin looks after I put it on. When I work it in (I like to use a kabuki brush with a buffing motion), it becomes one with the skin and imperceptible, and once it settles down, it has a dewy finish — not shiny — that’s very distinct and beautiful.

Waterweight also becomes one with my skin, but I think the finish looks quite different. It’s much less dewy than Face and Body’s finish — more velvety — and while it still reflects a little light, it’s less obvious than Face and Body.

Pore blurring

Serum foundations usually also excel at blurring pores and softening the overall appearance of the skin, and that’s another way in which MAC Face and Body and Studio Waterweight differ.

Face and Body? Hardly any pore blurring.

Like none.

But Studio Waterweight blurs and blurs and blurs…


With Face and Body, it’s easy to build up the coverage. If you have the wherewithal, you can build it all the way from super sheer to just shy of full.. I used to do exactly that for pics all the time, but good golly, Miss Molly! — it took forever and A LOT of layers.

Studio Waterweight’s coverage isn’t as easy to build. Solid medium coverage is as far as I can get, and that’s with two or three layers. But I still think Studio Waterweight is easier to work with than Face and Body, and it definitely requires less effort to buff and blend. All I do is pat it on the skin with fingers or a BeautyBlender.
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MAC Studio Waterweight SPF 30 Foundation

Published in: Face, MAC Makeup

mac studo waterweight foundation

MAC Studio Waterweight Foundation from the left in NC15, NW22, NC35 and NC50

MAC Studio Waterweight SPF 30 Foundation ($33). I’ve been daydreaming about and looking forward to this one for what feels like ages, and not just because I’m a water-baby at heart, but also because it’s a serum formula, and I absolutely do not ever want to go back to the time when most formulas looked and felt heavy, caked-on and obvious (perish the thought!). Serum foundation formulas usually feel lightweight and slippery (the good ones), like you’re slipping into a fine silk chemise, ooh-la-la. You do feel something when you’re wearing them…but it isn’t annoying or obvious.

Serum foundations also excel at pore blurring and disguising fine lines and little imperfections. So yeah, since those are among my daily adversaries (the struggle is so real), I was all over this one.

MAC Studio Waterweight is a bonafide serum foundation, and if you like natural-looking, moisturizing medium-coverage foundations with lightweight formulas, put it on your iPhone Notes list of products to try ASAP.

First things first, the finish.


I’m gonna call it a sheen, but I wouldn’t go so far as to call it dewy, because it isn’t shiny at all. It’s more refined than that, and velvety. Very natural looking.

As one of those lucky ladies with combination skin, I really appreciate that. My skin just can’t make up its mind! It’s oily on my forehead, dry on my cheeks and acne-prone along my jawline and around the edges of my forehead.

Oh — and there are also noticeable pores and fine lines up in the mix.

mac studo waterweight foundation dropper

MAC Studio Waterweight Foundation from the left in NC15, NW22, NC35 and NC50

I’ve been wearing and testing Studio Waterweight in shade NC42 for a few days, and I’m very happy with it. In many ways, I like it more than Dior Diorskin Nude Air Serum, which I used a ton this summer.

Other than the big difference in price (Diorskin Nude Air is $53 versus $33 for MAC Waterweight), Waterweight also comes in three times as many shades (25 shades versus eight, most of which have peach or pink undertones).

mac studio waterweight ingredients 2

Active ingredients…

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Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette

Published in: Face, Hourglass, Makeup, Product Reviews, Video

hourglass ambient lighting edit palette

The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette ($80)

Geez, it’s September already!? Wow, we better get a move on. It’s time for another bad-@ss holiday palette from Hourglass.

Yup, Hourglass has released a new holiday palette in each of the past couple of years, and they’re doing it again. The new one arrives next month — well, technically, there are a whole bunch of complicated release date machinations, but I’ll get into that in the video.

The latest palette is also Strunk & White-approved!

Har-dee-har-har, kidding. :) Sort of. It’s called Edit. It’s the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette, and it’s the biggest one so far (it’s also $80, which isn’t a bad deal at all considering the quality and price level of Hourglass products). It has six pans, one of which is a brand new shade called Iridescent Strobe Light.

hourglass ambient lighting edit palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette ($80)

Three of the six pans are Hourglass’s awesome Ambient Lighting Powders (including the one brand new shade). The other three pans house two blushes and a bronzer.

All but one of the colors are re-promotes, so if you’ve been hoarding (LOL!) Hourglass for a while — hey, nobody can blame you — you probably already have them in your collection.

hourglass ambient lighting edit palette

A closeup of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Palette pans…

The Ambients are gorgeous, though, particularly if you like that “glowy” look, and I mean, who doesn’t?
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5 Best Highlighters

Published in: Becca, Face, Hourglass, MAC Makeup, Makeup, Smashbox

my five best highlighters

The Tragedy of Tabby, Prince of Novato

Act III, Scene I

Enter Prince Tabby, Queen Karen, Left Turn the Black Cat, Thug the Russian Blue and Lords.

TABS: To highlight or not to highlight — that is the question.

Whether ’tis nobler in the condo to suffer the humiliating pets and chin scratches of outrageous fortune, or to raise paws against a sea of troubles, and by opposing, end them. To eat, to nap — perchance to dream; ay, there’s the tummy rub.

Wait, what the heck is Prince Tabby talking about!? I don’t know about him, but speaking for myself, there is absolutely NO question about it. I am always, ALWAYS down for highlighting, and here are my five top picks for “Best Highlighter.” These are the ones I wear the most. :)

Best Everyday Highlighter: Hourglass Ambient Powder in Luminous Light ($45)

houglass luminous light

It’s amazing to me how this champagne pearl pressed powder barely looks like I’ve made a dent in it, when I’ve been wearing it pretty consistently — sometimes for weeks on end — for the past few years.

That’s a pretty good thing to know, that a single pan of anything could last until forever, or until Skynet eventually takes over (whichever comes first).

What I love about Luminous Light — I mean, other than the name, because don’t most gals like the idea of being bathed in luminous light? — is the finish. On the skin it looks like expensive, plush velvet bathed in the light of a buttery late summer afternoon.


The sheen is unlike anything else I’ve seen before. Soft and subtle, yet still noticeable, and it’s oh, so forgiving of large pores and fine lines (hallelujah!).

All told, this one’s my favorite everyday, all-occasion highlighter in the world!

$45; available now at Hourglass counters and online.

Best Highlighter for a Dewy Finish: MAC Cream Colour Base in Hush ($22)

mac hush


No, you can talk. I was referring to MAC Hush, which I love for its flexibility. It’s a soft peach with subtle shimmer, and I like it just about any which way/any how — on bare skin, on top of tinted moisturizer, foundation, even on top of powder. Whenever I’m aiming for more of a dewy, wet look, out comes Hush.

All I do is use my fingers to apply and blend it, usually on my upper cheekbones, down the bridge of my nose and on my Cupid’s bow, and it takes all but a minute to use.

I also think it looks amazer-ing in pics.

Oh! — and you can also use it as an eyeshadow base. Score! :)

$22; available now at MAC counters and online.

Best Highlighter for Dramatic Looks: BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in Opal ($38)

becca opal

Good ol’ Opal. How many pans of it have I gone through over the years?

Three? Four…? I’ve lost count.

BECCA has many marvelous Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed options, but Opal is the one I wear most, by far. It’s a super shiny golden opal pearl, and for dramatic highlights, it’s unbeatable. Unlike standard-issue high-shine highlighters, of which there are many, it’s the very definition of luminous, and the complete antithesis of harsh and metallic, so skin glows seemingly from within with magical eldritch power without appearing oily.

It’s so friggin’ good that when I had to pick a single highlighter to wear on the red carpet to the Emmy’s last year, I went with Opal. There was no question about it.

Fun tip: to open up the eyes and make them look as big, bright and wide as possible, lightly apply Opal in the inner corners of the eyes, and just above and below the highest point in the arch of your brows.

$38; available now at Ulta, BECCA counters and online.
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