Tips and Tutorials

A Classic Neutral Makeup Tutorial With Cool-Toned Eyes and Nude Lips

Published in: Eyes, Makeup Tips/How To, Video

I’ve been wanting to do a tutorial for this look forever! It’s one of my fallbacks when I don’t want to think too hard…which is, like, all the time. Often. :) It’s a timeless classic eye with some cool-toned eyeshadows, and some neutral eyeshadows, and I usually pair it with peachy pink cheeks and nude lips (and sometimes false lashes).

How to do a classic neutral cool-toned eye

How to do a classic neutral cool-toned eye

There’s a bit to it, so it’s not a 5-minute look by any means, but it’s not too far out there either. It’ll get easier the more you do it.
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Help for Dry Winter Lips

Published in: Beauty Tips, Lips, Makeup Tips/How To

Help for Dry Winter Lips

I saw a ChapStick ad this morning before a video on YouTube, and the girl in it said that our skin is thinnest on our lips.

I thought, yeah…maybe that’s why mine hurt so much every winter!

It’s always the same, too, every year. When winter rolls around, so much ouch. My lips get cracked and dry, and it hurts.

It gets worse for a few weeks after we visit my in-laws in Redding, which is a town near the Oregon border.

Weirdly, Oregon gets a ton of rain, but Redding, even though it’s close, does not. I swear, the air there gets drier than the inside of a hot oven.

But time has taught me a few things that help my perpetually parched pout. I hope they help yours too. :)

1. Scrub-a-dub-dub

Exfoliate. It’s easier when my lips are soft and damp, like right after I get out of the shower.

Every once in a while I’ll mix a spoonful of sugar with a little honey or olive oil, and gently scrub (more like rub) that on my lips with an old toothbrush after I shower.

The Nimbus Microfine Regulars are awesome for this, by the way. Softest toothbrushes I’ve ever used.

They’re kind of hard to track down in stores… I’m not sure why, but here’s a five-pack on Amazon for $14. Highly recommended.

Brush your teeth (and your lips), kids! (And don’t forget to floss.)

If DIY doesn’t sound good, then you can use a regular lip exfoliator instead. Fresh Sugar Lip Polish ($22.50) is an excellent choice, as is Lush Mint Julips Lip Scrub.

2. A balm before bed

And keep it right on your nightstand, where it’ll be easy to remember (and reach).

I apply a thick layer of balm after I kiss El Hub and Tabs goodnight. It’s become part of my regular bedtime routine — 1) kiss El Hub, 2) kiss Tabs, 3) insert mouth guard, and 4) smear a thick layer of lip balm on my lips. Zzzz…

Nuxe Reve De Miel Ultra-Nourishing Lip Balm ($19) is the one on my nightstand now. It’s almost as thick as a paste and tastes and smells like honey.

The big glass jar isn’t super convenient to carry around during the day, but it’s purrfect for bedtime at night.

3. Guzzle water

For real though! Drink a sh*t-ton throughout the day. I notice a HUGE difference when I fall out of the habit of drinking enough water, and it’s not just that my lips get drier. My skin gets worse and less, I dunno…plump?

The difference is crystal clear, especially in winter. When I don’t drink enough water, my lips get tow up.
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How Often Do You Use Cream Eyeshadows, and What Are Your Faves?

Published in: Giorgio Armani, Just For Fun, Video

Just a quick video about these new Giorgio Armani Eye Tints and a question: how often do you use cream eyeshadows, and what are your faves?

As always, thank you for watching. :)

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


P.S. Happy Tuesday!

How to Build Your Courage for Crimson Lips

Published in: Makeup Tips/How To

5 tips to build your courage for crimson lips

Don’t be scurred!

Dude! Valentine’s Day? I know it’s hella commercial and cheesy, but I don’t even care. Chocolate, love and baby cherubs? You can’t go wrong with that. Plus, crimson lips? If there’s a day to go crazy with crimson, it’s gotta be V-Day.

But what if you’re scared to wear really red lips? What if you like the idea of going full-tilt Gwen Stefani, but you’re too terrified to try?

These five baby steps will build your courage for crimson lips. Remember, Drake was on Degrassi Jr. High once upon a time. Everybody’s gotta start somewhere.

1. Keep calm, and start with a red lip tint or balm

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in Cherry

Wearing Fresh Sugar Lip Tint in Cherry ($22.50)

Before going all the way with opaque red lips, you can take a baby step with a tint.

Red balms and tints are like crimson kitten heels, and years from now, when you’re strutting around town in the red lipstick version of 5-inch stilettos, you’ll think back to your starter balms…

When you wear a red balm or a tint, you’ll get a sense of what it’s like to wear red on your lips without the full-on shock of something opaque like MAC Ruby Woo.

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatments

Ease your way into red with something like Fresh Sugar Lip in Cherry (pictured in the center)

And that shock at seeing yourself in red lipstick for the first time is a legitimate thing. The first time I wore red (I think it was in high school, which would place it in the early Cretaceous Period), I didn’t recognize the person staring back at me in the mirror. A red lip balm reduces that risk.

Some tints/balms to try…

Fresh makes a great one called Sugar Lip Tint in Cherry ($22.50). Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Red Dahlia is also gorgeous (and affordable at $6.99).

2. Shine with a sheer red gloss

NYX Butter Gloss Cherry Pie

Wearing NYX Cherry Pie

If you’re more of a gloss girl, you could skip the balm, and go for a sheer red gloss instead. It’s the same idea of easing your way into red with a baby step.

Look for a sheer red gloss that lets most of your natural lip color through. That way you won’t have to worry about the gloss migrating outside your natural lip line.

Check out Buxom Full-On Lip Polish in Taylor ($19) or NYX Butter Gloss in Cherry Pie ($4.99).

3. Text a friend

Think of her as your makeup training buddy. Here’s the scenario: you’re visiting a makeup counter and trying to choose your sheer red gloss, but you can’t decide. Do you go with a sheer blue-based gloss or a warm-toned yellowish red? Sparkles or no sparkles?

Gah! These decisions are tough. :)

If all of the reds start to look the same, swatch the top contenders on your arm or the back of your hand, then take a quick pic with your phone.

Text it to a friend who (hopefully) knows a little bit about makeup, and ask her which shade she likes best for you, because it never hurts to have a second opinion.
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The Accent Nail Files: Find Common Ground to Create Unexpected Pairings Like Purple and Burgundy

Published in: Makeup Tips/How To, Nails, Smith & Cult

Smith & Cult Check the Rhyme paired with Lo-Fi

Smith & Cult Check the Rhyme nail polish teamed up with Lo-Fi lacquer

ME: “Oh, Magic 8 ball, will my attempt at nail art today turn out to be epically flawless and fabulous and absolutely everything I’ve ever dreamed nail art could be?”

MAGIC 8 BALL: “All signs point to hell naaaaw!

That particular accent nail combo up top was the result of an epic nail art fail last Sunday.

I’d started out trying to do something involving negative space and jerry-rigged Band-Aid cutouts and… Anyway, it didn’t work out, but it led me to the purple and burgundy combo here, ’cause you know I’m all about that accent nail life. :)

After the Band-Aid cutout disaster (long, sad story), I started thinking about creamy purple nails and got this picture in my head of a hand with bright violet nails wrapped around a glass of red wine.

So I dug through my stash and pulled out this vibrant violet shade by Smith & Cult called Check the Rhyme, which I paired with a burgundy called Lo-Fi, also from Smith & Cult.

By the founders of Hard Candy, Smith & Cult is a new line with some really cool colors, packaging and names. They only came out a few months ago. Wear time is OK, like 4-5 days with a base and top coat, so not as sturdy as OPI, but good enough if you like to swap out your polish every few days. The bottles are kind of expensive though at $18 each, but I like a lot of their colors.

Smith & Cult Check the Rhyme paired with Lo-Fi

The purple: Check the Rhyme. The burgundy: Lo-Fi.

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