October 21, 2011

Amazing find: Batiste Colored Dry Shampoo

Dear fellow black hair havers,
Is it just me or are we largely ignored by dry shampoo manufacturers?  The only black dry shampoo *I* knew of is the Bumble and Bumble hair powder, which is good, but it's SUPER expensive!! It generally retails for $25-$35-- even the tiny travel size is around $19.

 I've been looking for a cheaper alternative for a while, and have FINALLY found one at my local beauty store.  It's the Colored Dry Shampoo by Batiste.  I've used the regular Batiste dry shampoo before-- it was all right.  The smell was nice and it didn't make my hair really white like other brands have.   So finding this is black made me a very excited. And the price? LESS THAN $8!!! AWESOME!  How does Batiste CDS compare to the Bumble and Bumble hair powder? It's not a it's a much lighter texture than B&B, which I love.  With the B&B HP, I sometimes had trouble styling my hair after spraying it in because everything would get super dry and annoying. If you're like me and either A. have an oily scalp or B. dye your hair black and sometimes need to cover your roots in a flash, then you will fall in love with this.

I couldn't find a direct link for you guys if you were interested in picking up a can--sorry:( Be on the lookout for wherever Batiste is sold near you!

If you have a favorite black dry shampoo-- let me know in the comments!

Look of the day: Low-key (NOT)

Hi!  Do you ever have one of those days that you don't want to fuss over your look too much, then accidentally find something fun to play with?  That was me today. I was trying to get ready fast so i could go to the drugstore in my neighborhood, but then I found my Urban Decay Urban Ammo palette.   It's a really awesome little collection of colors-- some glitters, all shimmers, all great quality.  So here is today's look:
This is my cover of Vogue lolzzz

On my eyes:
Urban Decay Primer Potion (original)
Crease/outer corner: Last Call (shimmering medium burgundy)
Lid: Grifter (shimmering pink-lavender with silver glitter)
Lower lash line: Chopper (shimmering light bronze with silver glitter)
Highlights: Sin (shimmering pink champagne)
Eyebrows: Lucifer by Kat Von D (matte black)
#11 liquid eyeliner (sparkley burgundy) by Make Up Forever
Lush lash mascara by Urban Decay

On my face:
Tattoo concealer in Porcelain and Light by Kat Von D
L'Oreal True Match foundation in W1
Make Up Forever HD Powder
Pink Swoon Blush by MAC

On my Lips:
Rush (glossy pinky lavendery nude) lipstick by Urban Decay

Oh yeah if you're interested on how I did my 40's faux bangs, I learned from this awesome video by none other than Miss Fleur de Guerre.

What do you do for a low-key (or not) look? Let me know in the comments!

October 13, 2011

Skincare PATIENCE!

Dear readers,
Hopefully it's been ingrained in your heads how important it is to take care of your skin, no matter how old you are or what your skin type is.  If your skin acts like your enemy, as mine does to me, I know how it feels to pick up a product that's supposed to promise the moon and the stars, and does nothing of the sort.  This begins my story with retinol.

What's retinol? It's form of Vitamin A, which increases cell turnover.  It's often used in anti-aging products, and all the horrible (awesome) beauty mags I read are always saying "USE RETINOL WHEN YOU'RE IN YOUR 20s SO YOU DON'T LOOK LIKE A WRINKLED SACK OF DOODY LATER IN LIFE!!!"  I first started using it because it came in this acne kit.  It helped my acne heal and my scars fade, but I eventually got lazy and stopped using it.  When I switched to a different products, the terrible acne cycle began.  A few months ago, I was getting a little desperate and looked into laser treatment for scar removal for my face-- the quote I got was $1600.  Per treatment. According to the dermatologist I saw, she said I'd need three.

After the meeting, I dug out another OTC retinol product I had and started using it religiously every night (retinol breaks down in sunlight, so if you want it to work, you have to use it at night).  It's been about two months, and I definitely see a difference, not only in how my scars have faded, but also how much the texture of my skin has improved.

You may recognize from my Urban Defense review, taken a few months ago.

Right side- sad panda:(

This was taken this morning:
Right and left sides

Obviously my face didn't magically get perfect over night, but the difference is noticeable. So I guess this post is to encourage you to not give up! If you're like me, and using something to fix a problem, don't expect it to work overnight! Have patience! If your your routine is just to delay the inevitable, then congratulations to your future of being a hot senior citizen- keep up the good work!

October 7, 2011

WANT: Hello Kitty first aid kit

A poorly kept secret is that I manage to hurt myself all the time. It sucks. Maybe it's a special talent I should put on my resume? Another poorly kept secret is that I LOVE adorable things.  I'm not psycho-obsessed with Hello Kitty as some people are (which is kind of awesome- their obsession, that is), but I just came across this HK first aid kit, and I think I must own it.  How cute is that?!  At under $11 it's decently priced, and it's a 73 piece kit, so it will last me about.......... a week.

If you must own it too, it's available at Target.

Do you love any adorable/functional things? Let me know in the comments!

Review: Sally Hansen Nail Effects

These things have been around for a while now, and have gotten the seal of approval from some lovely friends of mine (hi Carolina! hi Jenn!), but I never picked them up until last week. While there are a few designs in the permanent collection that are really lovely, I kind of flipped for the Halloween designs.  My favorite designs were silvery spider webs, and red fishnets.  I went with the red fishnets because I think i can paint spider webs on my nails with the tools I already own.

The instructions were easy enough, and the kit included everything one needs to apply the stickers (mini nail file, wooden cuticle pusher). My only qualm was the little wooden cuticle pusher-- it kind of made my cuticles ragged. Next time I've just going to use my cuticle remover.  The only thing I didn't do well enough was stretching these to fit my nail beds, so on some of them there is a smidge of bare nail on the sides.  Not a big deal-- just something I'll know for next time.

While I love that there is zero drying time with these, what really impressed me was the wear time.  So far I've been wearing them for 9 days, and they're still going pretty strong!

9 days in!

I do have chips, but only on my thumbnails. The right thumb had an accident when I was cutting veggies for dinner, and the left got chipped because I was using it as a tool to pry something open.  Had  my nails not been abused, I'm sure they'd still be blemish-free.  PS: In case you're wondering, there isn't a topcoat on these babies, so the shine and sturdiness of the stickers isn't due to an outside product.

Left thumb, right thumb.
(no my right thumb isn't actually freakishly bigger than my left.  sorry to disappoint.)

All in all, I'd highly recommend these if you're into nail art but can't afford to go to a salon, if your art skills are lacking, or just want a quick polish job but don't have the time to wait for anything to dry.  These come in a variety of designs, and some solid colors too.  (Sally Hansen also makes nail stickers in a really sheer pink color, but they're not called Nail Effects, and they come in different packaging.  I noticed them with the bottles of top coats; etc. so if you're into something more natural, you may want to seek those out! Sorry I didn't remember the name of these)  I personally wish they would come in classic red for when my nails are a wreck and I suddenly have to look presentable for something.

Check your local drugstore for these, especially if you're interested in the Halloween designs! Actually, my Duane Reade had the "Holiday" designs out too. THEY ARE AWESOME! More about them another time.

Have any questions or comments? Feel free to post them below!