The Nuisance With Nudes!

Hello all- I’m back!!!

Wow…What a Hiatus!!!  I apologise very sincerely for not blogging for so many weeks. I’ll be honest- I lost my blogging mojo temporarily due to work and various other kids stresses! I won’t bore you with the gorey details but I’m back now with a bang!  Today’s post is on my troubles with finding the perfect nude liquid lipsticks!

Now, being a person of colour, I have come to accept that not every nude lipstick works well for me! It can actually be quite hard to find the right nude for a lot of us and being totally frank a lot of the ever popular Kylie Jenner style mauve/pinky/ browny nudes are the exact same colour as my top lip! This results in it looking like it looking distinctly like I’m wearing concealer on my lips if i just plonk it on! Another issue I face is that my lips are actually quite different in colour. My top lip is darker- that sort of pinky mauvey brown I mentioned earlier, but then my bottom lip has is a lot more red/pink in it- this is also common if people with mixed or darker skins. It can make it difficult for nudes to work well also! But, have no fear people- there is a way for it to work!

I have bought tried and tested so many nudes – I’ve built up quite a collection over the past year or so in search of the right nude!

I was determined to make it work and to find the right lipstick for me, and after trialing testing and gleaning information from all sorts of people in the know- I found out how to rock almost any nude regardless of skin or lip colour.

Lip Liner is key!

So, sticking to this fundamental rule makes it possible to wear almost any nude. Always use a liner. If you feel like the colour your wearing is too light or too contrasting for your skin tone you can try using a darker liner or even a darker shade of lipstick round the outside of your lips. This offers a contrast to your skin tone and the colour! You can even ombré the two colour together beautifully- this works particularly well if your bottom and top lips are different colours like mine are.

It’s all about finding the right liner for your colouring and for what your trying to achieve. Kylie Jenner ‘Lip kits’ are so expensive because the come with a liner as well as a liquid lipstick- but my beef with that is, the liner which comes with the kit (which is nice and creamy in texture to be fair but not dissimilar to the Colourpop liners) is the EXACT same colour as the actual lipstick. This is great for someone wanting to over line their lips to make them appear fuller but no good for someone like me who already has full lips and darker skin and thus needing to break the colour up from the skin tone. If you already have full lips, nudes will make them look even fuller- which can be a blessing or a curse whichever way you look at it! Personally I like to use a liner a shade or two darker than whatever colour I’m applying to break it up a bit.

The liners I always use are MAC Chestnut, MAC Stone or Whirl. I’ve also heard a lot of people with fairer complexions like to use MAC Soar  or MAC Spice to line their lips with. These are all nice brown shades,-Stone is a very cool grey toned liner, Chestnut is an intense neutral brown and Whirl, Soar and spice are more mid toned pinky or mauve browns! I find they work best to break up my lips and skin tone!

 

My all time favourite nudes for colour, longevity and texture (with swatches from left to right and links) are:

 

Can you tell I like my cool toned nudes?  I find they suit me better- I’m not actually sure why? I guess it’s because I have a very warm, yellow undertone to my skin and cool tones are contrasting? I dunno but anyway they seem to work for me!

What nudes do you like? Warm, or cool? What are your favourite lipsticks and why! Do you have any hints or tips on choosing the perfect nude for you? Let me know!

Mwah xxx

Exclusive Mac Pro-to-Pro Artist Textile Party

Wow! Second post this week? I’m on fire!!! So, a few of you asked me about the MAC Cosmetics event I was invited to last week and I thought I would squeeze in a quick blog post about it to tell you all.

So, I was lucky enough to get invited to the MAC Cosmetics Pro to Pro Textile party. Whats one of those? I hear you ask- well I wondered the same thing!  So i found out it’s basically a networking event with body painting!  I was actually really surprised to have gotten an invite as I’m not usually invited to such things (maybe I am finally graduating on to being a proper blogger and make up artist) so I was thrilled!  What’s more the invite said that there were free cocktails on offer courtesy of Tanqueray!

Eeeeeek! My favourite things all in the same place and at the same time! Make up, Networking, Mac cosmetics and cocktails!

The event was to be held at The Roundhouse in Camden, London. Such a beautiful venue and a great community  arts and events space!

So I dragged along my girl Fay as my plus 1 (didn’t think my boyfriend would be too eager to go) we went for a nice dinner  in camden before hand and arrived at the venue at around 9pm.

Wow it was buzzing, the event was full of industry professionals, make up artists and other generally cool people. It was a body painting event with an amazingly designed centre stage on which the models stood!  There was dancing and a lively DJ provided an eclectic mix of music and lots of rap, house and hip hop, which are my favourites! The cocktails and wine was flowing! Dominic Skinner – Mac’s lead make up artist and presumably the person responsible for creating the some of pieces of Art was there, networking and overseeing the event along with lots of other make up artists and professionals.

The body painting work itself took a team over over 30 body painters, over 10 hours to create- and was inspired by textiles and mathematics- lines and angles! It was created using Mac acrylic paints and was truly amazing to see.

I have posted a few pictures below, look at the models – it’s hard to believe they actually aren’t wearing any clothes!! It’s such intricate and fine work- it literally must have taken hours! I have so much awe for artists who can create this!

All in all I had a great night and it was nice I was able to take a friend along too. It’s great that MAC give back to their pro make up artists and support them in their networking, by putting on such a great event, which we otherwise my not have been exposed to.We had a lovely time, and we also had a fair few drinks and I think we left there slightly tipsy to be fair!

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So, there you have it- a quick piece on my night out- it really was like no event I’ve ever been to before, have you ever been to anything similar? What do you think of body painting as art? I love it! Let me know your thoughts?

Mwah xxx

2016 not 1916: The Foundation Problem – When will cosmetics brands wake up?

Hi Guys,

Hope all is well and Happy Friday! Now, I was going to do a blog post today on my favourite ‘holy grail’ foundations today, but the plan has now changed… basically I was in Covent Garden fixing my iPhone yet again, (don’t ask) I took myself into the Charlotte Tilbury Flagship store in order to get some samples of her Light Wonder foundation to discuss on this planned blog post. Well….. that just changed the whole direction of today’s post!

I’m sure you all have, at some point wasted money on the wrong foundation- sold down the river by a bored sales assistant who can’t be bothered to properly colour match you. You let them put it on, take their word for it & eagerly pay for it, all excited-thinking how good your gonna look on your night out later on, yet when you get out into daylight and catch a glimpse of yourself in a passing shop window or mirror or worse still, when you get home (after walking round all day like either an ashy wannabe ghost or a perma tanned, Donald Trump look-a-like) you realise it- yep, you’ve just wasted £30 (odd) on the wrong foundation!

So upon entering Charlotte Tilbury today, I approached a member of ‘Team Tilbury’ and requested 2/3 samples of this foundation in or around my colour….The sales assistant looked at me pityingly, and mumbled something about needing to check the back for “darker” colours. She disappeared for some time, then came back and I was told… (yet again) sorry but they have NO deeper shades of foundation for samples… all of them gone! Only lighter shades left until further notice! Well…I felt like I saw Covent Garden in 360 degrees all at once, my eyes rolled so far back into my head, in fact, my eyebrows still hurt with how high I raised them. I was alienated from this brand entirely in that 15 second exchange of words. Now, let me just explain one thing about Charlotte Tilbury, I literally only went to get samples to swatch for this blog as I thought readers might like to see it. I know already, that NO Charlotte Tilbury foundations suit my skin complexion- they are all far too orange and there are only about 3 deeper shades anyway, this brand isn’t for me as far as foundation goes. This brand is designed (IMHO) for the caucasian, fair woman. Anyone who doesn’t fit in that very small box needs to look elsewhere (Below i will post a few recommendations for other brands who are more diverse in their range).

Through talking to other beauty lovers in my networks, I gleaned that the issue of a lack of foundations for the darker/deeper skins also exists at the other end of the scale… the very pale complexions too have problems getting the right match (the stunning, english rose, snow white, types). Hardly any brands actually carry foundations that go fair enough for some people! Crazy right? There was me thinking that fair people had it easy…no. They suffer the same problems we darker skinned beauties do. When there are light shades they are all seemingly very red or pinky undertones (actually, this is the similar issue with the deeper foundations). What about the very pale who have yellowish skin complexions?  What are they to do if they are lighter than the lightest shade a brand carries?

This is not the first time this has happened to me, I am quite often told by various brands, they have sold out of all darker shades (either that or I am told none suit me). This isn’t because they are more popular, this is because they don’t carry as much stock in these shades to start with. So not only are the darker shades limited in colour range and usually all red/orange based, they are also scarcely stocked. I am sure the problem is there for the very light shades too. Of the darker shades that do exist, it seems their formulations are often unstable and they just end up orange after being worn for more than a few hours, or some have complained they just go ashy- seems like no love is put in to making such colours.

Foundation Swatches for your comparison

Just so you can see, some differences I have swatched on my arm (which is a slightly different colour to my face but hey ho) some of my selection of foundations that have been colour matched to me by staff in store. What do you all think? Personally my favourites at the moment for me are M.A.C Face and Body in C7 and Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk in 8.5. The left picture is just slapped on and the right picture is lightly blended into the skin.

 

In order from top (wrist) to bottom (elbow):-

  • M.A.C NC45 and NW43 Studio Fix Fluid (Good all rounders, large range of colours and shades- nice medium to full coverage, good choice for MUA’s but still too orangey for me personally- 45 in the Studio Fix Fluid is a touch too light for me and 43 is a bit too dark and way to red/pink)
  • Dior Airflash in 600 (lovely application as its spray on, and build-able but bottle gets used up quick, requires lots of shaking and has slightly oxidised in the bottle so is now a bit too dark)
  • Lancome Teint Miracle in Praline (oxidises in the bottle pretty quickly tbh and ends up orange after only a few months, although started off a good summer colour for me)
  • Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk in 9.5 (currently a favourite, fairly expensive however, but great colour match and lovely and dewy)
  • MAC Face and Body in C7 (all round winner, also my current best match and good price point, nice and yellowy undertones for me, great for weddings and flash photography)
  • MAC Matchmaster in 7.5 (wayyyyy too orangey based for me, nice coverage however)

Foundations for different skin tones.

To cater more “unusual” skin tones (pffffttt), I have found a few good reliable and recommended brands which have a huge range with different undertones (pink, yellow and neutral) for you ladies to try:

UnknownM.A.C Face and Body – (£22.00 50ml and £29.50 120ml)

This Foundation works really well for me, and is used by lots of professional MUAs because it has clearly yellow or pink undertones (comes in different numbering system so only in N or C) because its so dewy and light it seems to absorb into the skin and takes on the skins natural colouring (current favourite) can be bought in and M.A.C store or www.maccosmetics.co.uk

Unknown-3Unknown-2NARS- Sheer Glow (£31.00) & All day Luminous Weightless Foundation (£32.00)

For those with deeper skins and yellow or olive undertones- I am recommended this time and time again- one even by sales staff on other counters. Can be bought in store or at www.narscosmetics.co.uk

Unknown-4 Illamasqua Skin Base (£32.50)

This foundation range is the most inclusive I’ve come across- because not only does it go from the very light shades for very pale people to very deep dark shades with a range of undertones it has a literally white foundation which you can add to colour to adjust them as you like (plus I know the guy who built & designed this and he made it clear to me that when he made it he really wanted to be inclusive to everyone  with every skin shade) this can can be found in store or online at http://www.illamasqua.com

I000032520_0.pngMake Up Forever HD Foundation (£29.00)

MUFE has an absolutely huge range of colours and is designed for HD TV (so is great coverage, feels list on the skin has no flashback other perks) the range is massive and goes from the very light to very dark definitely worth a try if you are very pale or deeper. This can be bought in store at Debenhams, Sephora (online for us in the uk) and also PAM London and Guru Make Up Emporium carry it too. http://www.sephora.com, http://www.debenhams.com, http://www.preciousaboutmakeup.com, www.gurumakeupemporium.com

Before I go……

It’s not the 1960s, black people wear make up too, and the world is now more and more diverse more make up brands need to keep up. Likewise they need to cater for the for the very pale. Why hasn’t there been a shift in the cosmetics industry? In my opinion because companies are worried that the darker (or very pale) shades just won’t sell. They will sit on the shelf and expire and will end up being binned at gloss to the company. They are probably right because people who have difficult skin to match, skin which doesn’t fit into the little neat square box cosmetics companies have us in, just don’t have faith in cosmetics brands and therefore they don’t bother to even look and subsequently sales are low. Ironically if they made more shades for deeper or lighter skin tones people would have more faith in and loyalty to the brands and it would sell. It’s a chicken and egg scenario and a sad state of affairs. One can only hope that in the future brands wake up and smell the coffee.

So, some food for thought guys? What are your experiences and thoughts on this topic? What brands do you use and why?

and with that I bid you all farewell for now…..

 

Mwah xxxx

 

*pictures from http://www.makeupforeverus.com, wwww.maccosmetics.co.uk, http://www.illamasqua.com, http://www.narscosmetics.co.uk

M.A.C Flamingo Park Collection- Spring 2016

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Ok.. so for my first grown up product review post, I shall be reviewing the Flamingo Park collection from M.A.C – it is soon to launch here in the U.K. (4th March I believe) I got it however on a recent trip to the states who have already had it since the 4th February I think – sigh…. as usual we here in the u.k are left out in the cold patiently waiting for its release.

This collection is so fitting for Spring : Think pretty delicate things, picture flowers, petals, gentle flamingos, super girlie pinks and corals with a fresh, youthful feel.

My thoughts!

I wasn’t able to purchase the entire collection to review for you guys, and I didn’t buy the palette because let’s face it I have enough…. but i was served in store in by a great girl who had the same name as me, all credit to her the customer service was great we really got on and she hooked me up….we picked out a few key pieces from each product line, which we felt would suit my skin complexion. Now you have to understand, I am not usually one for pink when it comes to make up.  I mean, as a rule it simply doesn’t suit me, for one, I have darker skin, and for two I am very warm in complexion (so think NC or even C in Mac, very yellowy, gold suiting, olive undertoned complexion) so as a rule pinks clash with my skin and I end up looking like some sort of fake wannabe, horrendous, barbie doll, however I picked out some colours which I think I could pull off.

  • Blusher in Life’s A Picnic- now, the key with pink blusher, I personally think is, less is more- always, in no uncertain terms…. just saying no-one wants to look like crusty the clown!! I used a very light dusting of this colour to add warmth to my cheeks- too much and I would end up looking like a scary clown/barbie (use any fluffy soft powder brush to sweep on apples of cheeks and outward but with hardly any pressure)
  • Next up is a gorgeous deep bright magenta matte lipstick called ‘Have Your Cake’ (BTW: I noticed this lipstick straight away as soon as I walked in store its my favourite from this collection and i have a few of the others) – it is a bit bright so if your not one for colour I would swerve it and go for a softer pink) but i totally love it. Yes ok, its bright but, for a night out with a simple brown smokey eye the right simple outfit to compliment it i think this one is a winner!
  • I also bought the lip liner called Embrace Me which works well with the lipstick colour I chose but could work well with most  deeper pinks. I literally can’t wear lipstick without a liner nowadays so it had to be done!
  • And of course I bought that lovely lipgloss in Playful Petal ( you will get to know i love my lipgloss) which actually has lovely iridescent blue glitter flecks throughout it but I’m not sure if you can see that from the pictures- I have got a shot of just the lipgloss in there as well as lipstick with gloss over it – Personally I think this lipgloss is great for a day time, played down look.

The full collection deets……..

For the eyes!

x9 Eyeshadow Palette- Flamingo Park

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9 Newley created shades- Personally I didn’t buy this palette but i saw it in the flesh and I really like the look of the bottom row- Royal Blue looks amazing and Fabulous and Roaming (both bottom row) would be great transition colours.

  • Glamour Light (lemon yellow)
  • Floridazzle (soft lime green)
  • Hello There (soft nude beige)
  • Flock and Roll (light pastel pink)
  • Sushi Flower (pinky shimmery coral)
  • Birds Eye View (magenta hot pink)
  • Roaming (dirty lavender)
  • Fabulous (warm midtown brown)
  • Royal Blue (light blue pearl)

For the lips!

mac flamingo park

Lipsticks

  • The Fashion Flock (bright pink coral in matte finish- Limited Edition)
  • Saint Germain (amplified pink, existing colour)
  • Long Legged and Fabulous (cremesheene pearl baby pink- Limited edition)
  • Be Silly (Matte hot fascia pink Limited Edition)
  • Silly (matte bright white pink)
  • Have Your Cake (bright magenta pink in matte, Limited Edition)
  • Please Me muted (rosy pink in matte, existing colour)
  • Nice To Meet You (deep pink red in cremesheen)
  • Flocking Fabulous (cremesheene and pearl coral red)

Cremesheen Glass (Lip gloss)

  • Such Sweeties (Pastel Baby Pink)
  • Look Who’s Here (Soft pink/blue pearl)
  • Petite Indulgence (Bright blue/pink)
  • Sweet Tooth (midtone pink)
  • Playful Petal (electric magenta)
  • Chic trick- (Ampedup Fuscia)

Lip Pencils

Embrace Me – (Bright vivid fuscia pink)
In Synch (bright yellow toned pink)

Such Sweeties (Pastel Baby Pink)

For the cheeks!

mac flaming park

Blushers!

  • What I Fancy (Soft bright apricot)
  • Spring Flock ( Satin, light coral)
  • Pink Swoon (Satin, soft candy pink)
  • Let’s Be Friends ( Satin blue hot pink)
  • This Could Be Fun (violet pink)
  • Life’s a Picnic (Hot reddish pink)
  • Oh My (Online exclusive, reddish midtone coral)

Pearlised skin finishing powders

  • Pearl Blossom (Light pink with silver pearlised pigments)
  • Sunny Surprise (Soft peach)

Pigments

  • Olive (Highly frosted, green gold)
  • Tan (Muted, pinky brown bronze)
  • Rose (Rose gold with copper sparkle)

For the nails!

Nail Lacquers

  • Spoonful Of Sugar (Soft pink glitter with pink pearl)
  • Miami (Warm Pink Coral)

So, what do you all think of the collection? Is there a pink out there for everyone? Are you a pretty in pink lover or not?  Will you be buying anything from the collection? Would love to know if you do!!!

The collection can be purchased at www.maccosmetics.com or www.maccosmetics.co.uk

(All pictures in this post if not taken by me are credited to M.A.C Cosmetics)