Read My Lips: This Nude Lip Gloss by theBalm Deserves Big Snaps

Published in: Daily Beauty

theBalm Read My Lips Lipgloss in Snap (2)

Oh, snap, honey! As far as nude lipglosses go, theBalm’s Read My Lips Lip Gloss in Snap has it — *three snaps in a Z formation* — on point.

I find that many lipglosses, particularly nude lipglosses, aren’t pigmented enough to completely cover my naturally pigmented lips, and so my natural lip color peeks through.

And then with opaque nude lipglosses, so many of them look chalky or patchy or just plain weird.

Snap by theBalm ($15) suffers from none of that nonsense/crazy-business. It’s incredibly smooth and completely full coverage. A subtle injection of rich, rosy brownish pink gives it just enough color to lift up my lips…so I don’t look like some unfortunate extra on CSI who got picked off early in the first few minutes of the show.

PRICE: $15
AVAILABILITY: Available now at theBalm counters and online
MAKEUP AND BEAUTY BLOG RATING: A+

theBalm Read My Lips Lipgloss in Snap (3)

theBalm Read My Lips Lipgloss in Snap (4)

theBalm Read My Lips Lip Gloss in Snap

thebalm snap read my lips lipgloss

Another Day, Another Serving of Food Pics: Artichoke Puree Soup and an Open-Faced Chickpea Spread Sandwich From Rustic Bakery

Published in: Daily Photo

Chickpea Spread, Artichoke Puree Soup and Iced Tea from Rustic Bakery (2)

I had this open-faced sandwich with a chickpea spread for lunch at Rustic Bakery in Novato yesterday, and that whole top veggie action was dayum good.

Served with a side of pureed artichoke soup, and I washed it down with iced tea.

Those are kalamata olives, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, chives and sprouts on top of the sammy.

The chickpea spread was interestingly tasty. Not quite as smooth as hummus. More chunky and a little citrusy (Meyer lemon, I think), with lots of fresh herbs.

It was nice and filling, which is great because I’m always hungry.

I’m going to try to reverse engineer the sandwich at home, so wish me luck. I’ll need it, because my taste buds, like my vision, ain’t all that.

But I make up for it with my freakishly strong sense of smell! Seriously, if you ever need someone to let you know if your neighbor six doors down is baking brownies, I’m your gal. :)

Chickpea Spread, Artichoke Puree Soup and Iced Tea from Rustic Bakery (3)

Chickpea Spread, Artichoke Puree Soup and Iced Tea from Rustic Bakery (4)

Chickpea Spread, Artichoke Puree Soup and Iced Tea from Rustic Bakery (5)

Chickpea Spread, Artichoke Puree Soup and Iced Tea from Rustic Bakery (6)

Recently Reformulated Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight Casts Its Spell on Even the Littlest Lashes

Published in: Eyes, Makeup, Product Reviews, Rouge Bunny Rouge

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight

I’m always down for makeup magic. (Somebody pass girlfriend some eye of newt.)

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara ($29) leaves lashes so defined, separated and fanned out — even the tiniest little lashes at the corners — that I wouldn’t be surprised to find out they were made at Hogwarts.

That’s because magic is the idea behind Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara and its new formula, which does not contain bat wings, frog toes, lizard legs, triethanolamine, silicone, fragrance or alcohol.

The creamy formula does, however, contain pure pigments, soft waxes keratin and conditioners to keep the mascara lightweight, flexible and easy to layer.

Seriously, pile that ish on! It does not clump.

I actually never tried the original Witchery formula, so I can’t compare this new version to that, but I can tell you how much I lurve it. :)

When it comes to getting those individual lashes separated and pinpoint defined, it’s bad@ss like a 20th-level wizard. The plastic brush works like a fine-toothed comb, drawing out even the littlest lashes from their secret hiding places.

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight

Besides separating and darkening lashes (ooh, blacker than my cold, cold heart), Midnight also turns them into a ballerina — and by that I mean that it grants them excellent extension.

(Picture Ryan Gosling doing hot yoga.)

Wait, what?

I guess the most important question now is this: is Witchery perfect?

Is it the UFC-champion, gold-medal-winning tube of lash crack I’ve been looking for since, like, forever?

No, I wouldn’t say that. I don’t think it’s the world’s greatest mascara for lash curl or lift, or for increasing thickness at the base, although I do think it does some of that, but it’s a wizard when it comes to enchantingly dark, super separated lashes.

Witchery comes in two shades — Midnight, the deep black I’m wearing here on both my upper and lower lashes; and Golden Darkness, a dark auburn. They’re $29 each.

Rouge Bunny Rouge is sometimes still tough to find here in the U.S., but a few stores do carry the line, and they’re also available online at beautyhabit.com.

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara before (left) and after two coats (right)

Before (left) and after two coats (right)

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The Tarte Rainforest After Dark Colored Clay Eye & Cheek Palette: When This Snake Bites, It’s Good for Your Skin

Published in: Eyes, Face, Makeup, Palettes, Product Reviews, Tarte

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

Wearing the new Tarte Rainforest After Dark Colored Clay Eye & Cheek Palette ($38) on my eyes and cheeks

Snakes.

Freak out, man! SNAKES! They’re all over Tarte’s fall collection, including the Rainforest After Dark Colored Clay Eye & Cheek Palette ($38), which is kind of like the star serpent of the nine-piece release slithering now across Tarte counters and online.

The collection includes both limited edition products and new pieces bound for the permanent line, with the After Dark palette being one of the limited edition items.

The palette houses nine powder products — six eyeshadows, a bronzer, a highlighter and a blush — in colors inspired by the deep orchid hues of a rainforest at dusk, and in true Tarte fashion, the whole enchilada is cruelty-free, and made without parabens, mineral oil, phthalates, triclosan, sodium lauryl sulfate or gluten.

Like many of Tarte’s products, this one is designed to deliver skin benefits which, in a way, I’m kind of conflicted about…

I mean, I love that whole idea — the idea of makeup that doubles as a skin care product — but I’m just not sure how well it works.

With serums and moisturizers, I can actually see and feel them being absorbed into my skin, but with makeup, it’s kind of just sitting right there on top, ya know?

Is it doing anything? I don’t know, but I figure it can’t hurt.

The secret ingredient in these is something Tarte calls colored clay, a super absorbent clay able to auto-magically color correct and address your specific skin and complexion concerns, and these powder definitely do absorb oil well.

Might be something to consider if you have very oily lids and/or cheeks.

The colors — plums, tans and golds — are all fairly neutral, and not too cool nor warm, making them good fits for a wide range of skin tones.

It’s hard to really mess up when using the eyeshadows, too, no matter how much I pack on, because they aren’t crazy pigmented (I’d say they’re about a medium). They blend out beautifully without looking too heavy.

I do notice a little fallout, but it’s not a big deal. Just tap off your brush first, or work it into the back of your hand.

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

In terms of performance, the eyeshadows put up major points. In a perfect world, though, I might darken the darker shades a bit.

As for the blush, wow, so beautiful. That matte plummy tone sure looks natural on the skin, but the Park Ave. Princess bronzer? Eh. I think that one’s just OK. Probably better suited for lighter skin tones than mine.

Oh, about the gold highlighter and gold eyeshadow — holy highlight that, man! We’re talking really, really shimmery.

All and all, I’d say it’s a lovely palette — perfect for gals/guys who like natural looks with a kick.

I usually prefer a little more oomph from my eyeshadows, but I still see a lot here I’m sure I’ll wear this fall.

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

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Bright Eye Makeup: What’s One Makeup Tip or Technique That Adds a Lot to Your Look?

Published in: Just For Fun

Wearing greens, purples and an orangey copper eyeshadow with a brown liner on my water lines

Wearing green, purple and coppery orange eyeshadow with brown liner on my water lines

Most of the time when I wear bright eyeshadow, I like to add liner along my water lines or top lash lines to ground the look.

Granted, this is not a hard and fast rule. It’s makeup; you can do whatever you want. But when I’m wearing a color that isn’t brown or beige — something bright, like a green, blue or purple — I’ll line it with black or brown eyeliner, or sometimes a darker version of whichever eyeshadows I’m wearing.

I’m always thinking about the transitions between colors when I do a look, like from light to medium to dark — that kind of thing — and when I have, say, a purple or a green eyeshadow on my lids or lower lash lines, and the color runs flush up against the whites of my eyes, that transition seems very stark to me. The green against the white.

MAC Moody Blooms Eye Shadows in Artistic License (inner corner near the tearduct and on brow bone), Deep Fixation (lid and outer crease), Blooming Mad (inner crease), Hidden Motive (outer part of lower lash line) and Lucky Green (inner part of the lower lash line)

That’s MAC Costa Riche Eye Kohl on my water lines

I think that adding a liner smooths out the transition between the shadow and the whites of the eyes, and sort of marries the two together, kind of like stitching.

What’s one bright eye makeup tip or technique that adds a lot to your look?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,

Karen

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