Makeup & Cosmetics Products
Neutrogena Mineral Sheer Blush Samples
Update 12/6/2010: This offer is now expired!
Try Neutrogena’s new Mineral Sheer Blush. This product is a great one to use if you like a natural, healthy glow – a perfect look for summer. You can choose between four shades: Natural Apricot, Silky Sable, Precious Pink and Pure Plum. The blush comes in a dispenser that ensures you have just the right amount of product on the attached blush brush. The blush contains antioxidants and conditions your skin as you use it!
Smashbox Coupon Code: CHIC
Aug 03 2010 | Categories:
Blush, Coupon, Promo & Discount Codes, Deals & Discounts, Free Beauty Samples, Free Lip Gloss Samples, Free Lipstick Samples, Free Makeup Samples, Free Offers, Lipgloss | Reviews & Makeup Tips, Lipstick, Makeup for Cheeks, Makeup Tips for Lips, Smashbox Cosmetics
Hi Beauties! Smashbox has a limited time offer for a free Double Exposure Lip and Cheek Color in Speedracer with any purchase of $55 or more. Simply enter coupon code CHIC at checkout at smashbox.com. This offer is only valid from 8/2-8/8/2010!
MAC: Pro Longwear Lip Creme Collection
Release Date: September 16, 2010
It’s an age-old dilemma that still doesn’t seem to have a good solution: How can you get your lipstick to stay put while eating? Cosmetics companies come out with long wearing lipsticks from time to time but most of these leave your lips dry and an unsightly ring of color around your lips. MAC addresses this problem head-on with their new Pro Longwear Lip Creme Collection.
As the name implies, these lipsticks are very creamy. They come in a wind-up tube that is similar to MAC’s lipstick packaging but taller and narrower. The consistency of these lip cremes is actually closer to a balm and they do a decent job of keeping lips hydrated.
One of the best things about these lipsticks is that they don’t require a special top coat like most long-wearing lipsticks. This means application is a snap, although you should probably use a mirror since the color is so pigmented that it’s not very forgiving. They do deliver on their promise to stay in place for up to twelve hours but don’t tempt fate by eating an oily pasta sauce. The colors go on pretty evenly and they have a subtle sheen to them. These lip cremes will be part of the permanent collection so MAC is placing a lot of confidence in this product. Don’t expect it to be just a passing trend.
Fading lipstick is a particular problem with bright and dark colors so MAC made sure to include several of these shades in the collection. Good to Go is a bold bright orange shade that is not for the faint of heart. Love Forever! is a daring bright pink with blue undertones. The dark brick red Extended Play is a great shade for fall. Prolong is a ruby red shade that is destined to become a classic for those who can pull off red lips. These are mostly cream formulas but there are also two frosty shades: the coppery Sweet Ever After and the nude/plum Made to Last. All of the colors provide full coverage.
A Review of Becca Cosmetics
Becca Cosmetics is an Australian makeup line originally developed because founder Rebecca Morris Williams was frustrated in her search for the perfect foundation. The lines foundation formulas have since become beloved of makeup artists and consumers alike, but Becca also offers a wide range of color cosmetics as well.
Many women complain that they cannot find a true color match in most foundations. Most lines tend to ignore very pale or very deep skin tones, or they ignore undertones, such as warm or cool. Therefore, someone with dark cool skin may find that the darkest foundation looks too orange, while someone with pale warm skin may find that the lightest shade is far too pink. Becca’s foundation stick comes in thirty different shades instead of the typical eight or twelve, thus increasing the chances that you will be able to find the perfect color. All of the Becca Cosmetics base products for the face contain SPF as well.
Becca Beach Tint is often featured in magazines and has been praised by makeup artists; the shade Watermelon is a fabulous pink that gives the perfect summer flush. A multi-use product, it can be used as a stain on lips and cheeks. This product has been named an Allure Best Beauty Product.
In fact, Becca offers many multi-use products, from shimmer powders to highly pigmented cheek crèmes that double as lip colors.
The Becca look is toned-down, a bit earthy, but still glamorous and quietly chic. By creating the perfect canvas with the tinted moisturizers and foundations, you really don’t need a lot of bright, loud colors to accent your natural beauty.
These products from Becca Cosmetics may be slightly harder to find, but they can be purchased in certain department stores, in makeup boutiques, and of course, online. If it seems like none of your foundations look right or perform the way you want them to, why not check out Becca?
Benefit Cosmetics: High Beam Highlighter
When it comes to getting fresh glowing skin, Benefit High Beam can’t be beat. This liquid highlighter from Benefit is one of the most popular highlighters on the market for a good reason. There are many highlighters out there and most of them are duds. It’s a product that’s hard to get right. Instead of a youthful glow, many highlighters give a greasy shine. Others have noticeable chunks of glitter that look ridiculous in sunlight. Even the ones that do look alright tend to clog pores. Benefit got the formula right when it created High Beam. This is definitely one of our top Benefit makeup picks.
High Beam comes in a small bottle with a brush attached to the lid, similar to the packaging of nail polish. However, it is easier to apply it with your fingertips as that gives you more control over where you apply it and makes blending easier. For the most natural look, dab the brush onto your fingertips and then dot the product onto your cheeks, brow bone, and the bridge of your nose and then blend it in an outward circular motion using your fingertips. It is fairly long lasting which means you won’t need to touch it up during the day. However, it is easy enough to tuck the bottle into your purse just in case.
In the bottle, the liquid looks a bit on the pink side but when applied, it makes your whole face look brighter without any trace of pink. The color works even on the palest of skin tones. The popularity of High Beam has also led to the creation of a warmer-toned version, Moon Beam, which looks particularly nice with a deep tan.
Benefit’s High Beam is a great way to get radiant skin without looking shimmery or oily. It is subtle enough to wear during the day, but it’s easy to get a dramatic look by applying it with a heavy hand for a night out. Like other Benefit Cosmetics products, it doesn’t irritate sensitive skin or clog pores. Overall, this is a well-rounded highlighter that really delivers on its promises. Just a small amount of product can totally transform your face from dull and tired to bright, awake, and glowing.
Senna Cosmetics is an indie beauty brand that brings the expertise of a pro makeup artist with experience working in film and television right to your makeup drawer! For a great look, you need to have a smooth, clean-looking canvas to work with. That’s why it’s so important to find a great foundation, or base product; Senna foundations offer many different options with different finishes for your optimal “perfect canvas.”
The mineral makeup trend is still going strong as women seek a lighter, more natural, and breathable way to cover up skin imperfections. Senna offers several different mineral based foundations. Pressed Mineral Mix foundation provides buildable coverage with all the benefits of mineral makeup, but with less mess. It’s easily portable and comes in six shades. Mineral Mix Cover and Finish foundation is loose, contains no common irritants such as dyes or waxes, provides sun protection, and provides complete coverage—even for extreme redness, such as that related to rosacea. In the lid of the Cover and Finish is a pressed powder in a slightly darker shade that can be used for bronzer, contouring, or just as your skin changes color slightly.
Too often, oil-free foundations are also full-coverage foundations. Senna foundation is lightweight and buildable, eliminating the chance of a mask-like finish. The Senna Matte Finish Liquid Makeup is water based and oil-free, and builds to your desired level of coverage. It has options for both warm and cool skin tones in a total of 15 shades.
Slipcover Cream-To-Powder foundation offers a creamy base without any oily additives, and works equally well on oily and dry skins. Moist Matte is a compact foundation that can be used wet for full coverage, or dry for sheer coverage.
Each of the Senna foundation formulas has something to offer everyone in terms of coverage, color, and finish.
Best Mineral Makeup Brand – Vote Now!
When it comes to mineral makeup, which ones work, which ones don’t? What’s your opinion?
Vote for your favorite brands (or leave a comment and vent about the ones you hate). If you don’t see your favorite brand here, leave a comment and we’ll add it to the list.
We’ll be posting reviews on each of these brands in the near future, so if you have any requests for specific mineral makeup brands, don’t hesitate to let us know! :)
A Beginner’s Guide to Benefit Lipstick
Benefit Cosmetics is a cutesy cosmetics brand known for clever names and a catalog that is truly fun to read. Although they are best known for some of their more unique products, their basics should not be overlooked. Lipstick may seem boring next to some of their more innovative items, but the truth is, like most Benefit makeup products, Benefit lipsticks are great products worthy of their somewhat high price tags.
Benefit Full Finish Lipstick is one of those products that will save you money in the long run. This lipstick is formulated to give even and solid coverage, eliminating the need for using a separate lip liner and gloss. The finish is creamy with a slight sheen so it looks polished without being overdone. The shade Lady’s Choice is without a doubt one of the very best lipstick colors you can buy anywhere, and I don’t make statements like that very lightly! Lady’s Choice is a soft, neutral pink color with just a touch of brown that is similar to the natural lip color most of wish we were born with. It’s just enough color to make it look like you made an effort, but not so much color that everyone is going to instantly notice you are wearing lipstick. The wear could be better on these but they are very easy to reapply. In fact, you don’t even need a mirror.
photo credit: corporatemonkey
BeneFit Silky Finish Lipstick is a lighter formulation than the Full Finish. It is sheer but buildable. One coat is perfect on those days when you don’t really want to look like you are wearing makeup. A few coats of the same color over a lip pencil and finished with gloss gives a more complete look. The great thing about this product is that you control the coverage. There are plenty of flattering shades in both cream and pearl finishes. They are also very moisturizing.
If you’re just getting started with Benefit Cosmetics Lipstick, a couple of popular shades include Benefit Silky Finish Lipstick in Good to Go and Ms. Behavin.
BeneFit really got it right with both of their lipstick formulations. As an added bonus, the packaging is adorable. Each Benefit lipstick comes in a box with vintage doll art and a little message inside that reminds me of something you might find inside a fortune cookie. The tubes are attractive in black with little white loops on the bottom. Props to BeneFit for doing such a great job on a classic product.
How to Apply Lip Gloss
If you’re just learning how to apply beauty products and cosmetics, lip gloss is an ideal product to begin with. It’s easier to apply than lipstick, and choosing a shade is much, much easier with lip gloss. With lipstick, it is very easy to inadvertently choose a shade that clashes with your skin tone, your eye makeup, or your outfit. Since lip gloss is almost always sheer, reflective or iridescent, you can easily find a shade that will compliment your coloring and still make your lips stand out. Plus, learning how to apply lip gloss is a snap. Our favorites include Dior lip glosses and MAC lip glosses.
Step 1: Start with conditioned lips. The key to applying lip gloss (and lipstick too for that matter) is to start with smooth, conditioned lips. As a general rule, you should apply Vaseline, a lip balm or a moisturizing Chapstick to your lips before bedtime each night to help maintain soft, smooth lips. Protecting your lips by using products with SPF is key since sun exposure leads to dry, chapped lips.
Step 2: When your lips are conditioned and moisturized, if needed, use a toothbrush or a cotton swab to gently brush off any excess dry skin that can make your lips look rough. When you are more consistent with keeping your lips conditioned, you won’t need to do this step much at all. Your lips will stay smooth and soft if you continually protect and care for them.
Step 3: You may want to apply lip liner before you apply lip gloss. You can use lip liner first, or simply skip this step, depending on what kind of look you are going for. Lip liner will help keep a little color on your lips in between the times you touch up your gloss. It can also help add definition to your lips, help make them look a little fuller, or even out any flaws. When using a gloss on top, you should choose a soft, neutral shade or one that is very close to your natural lip color. You don’t want the liner to be obvious since your lip gloss will likely be somewhat sheer and will require reapplication from time to time. Next week we will be posting extensive details on how to apply lip liner for a wider range of lip makeup looks.
Step 4: Apply the gloss. Glide the color over your lips. Depending on the brand of lip gloss you’re using, the container will most likely either be a squeezable tube or a tube containing a brush or sponge tip attached to the container’s lid. If your gloss is in a squeezable tube, simply apply it by placing a bit of gloss on your forefinger and gently swiping the gloss across your lips. If your container has a brush or sponge tip, simply pull the lid out of the tube and sweep the brush or sponge tip across your lips. Be careful not to start with too much gloss. You can always add a little more, but if you start with too much at first, it can end up looking goopy and messy.
Step 5: Use a q-tip, cotton swab, or your finger to wipe off any gloss that may have gone outside the edge of your lip line.
Step 6: Lastly, be sure to bring your gloss with you in your bag. Gloss is one of our very favorite makeup products, but it does come off easier than other lip products and will need to be reapplied or touched up every so often. In our opinion, the extra lip gloss applications are worth it since lip gloss provides that shiny look that is unmatched by anything else. Enjoy!
Read some of our additional lip makeup tips.
How to Apply Powder Blush
[See the rest of our How to Apply Makeup series for beginners.]
Even though not all women wear it, blush can instantly brighten up your look. But, like bronzer, going overboard with blush can result in a beauty disaster. Know ahead of time that you need to be careful not to apply too much.
Step 1: Choose your brush. If you purchase a blush that comes with one of those little compact brushes, throw it out! You need a large, fluffy brush to properly apply powder blush. Small brushes will make your blush look streaky, striped, uneven or too heavy. You want it to go on softly, evenly and blend into the rest of your look flawlessly. A large blush brush will do the trick.
Step 2. Choose your color. Be sure to choose a shade that flatters your skin tone. Blush doesn’t need to be super bright – it is usually best when subtle and natural looking.
Step 3. Dust your brush lightly in the blush. Tap the brush lightly on the side of the compact to get rid of any excess blush.
Step 4: Smile! This helps you to identify the apples of your cheeks – which is where you should apply the blush.
Step 5: Brush on the blush in a gentle circular motion focusing on the apples of your cheeks and dusting a little towards your temple. Blend well! You don’t want to look like a clown! Remember, it’s best to add a little blush at a time and layer until you find the level of color that looks best on you.
Additional Tip: Usually, blush should be applied on top of foundation. For a more subtle look, you can try applying your blush before your powder foundation.
Benefit: Realness of Concealness
Beauty emergency? Not anymore… Benefit’s Realness of Concealness mini “fake it” kit has the solution for just about anything. This little kit contains an assortment of fix-it products from Benefit Cosmetics. The enhancers include Ooh La Lift, Lip Plump and High Beam, as well as Lemon Aid and Boi-ing – two of the top selling Benefit concealers. The kit is portable – small enough to pass through airport security with its recently tightened regulations (learn more about travel beauty tips). According to Benefit, “It’s your solution for beauty dilemmas on-the-go”.
If you’re a Cosmopolitan Magazine fan, you’ll be glad to know it was praised there and received the “Fabulous Face Kit” Beauty Award. It was also voted the “Favorite Timesaver” by Child Magazine. If you have a stressful week and you happen to break out, this concealer kit can be a life saver if you have any events that week. If you’ve been curious about a Benefit concealer or other correction product, this is a great way to try it out, along with a few other Benefit fan favorites. This is also a great item to keep handy in a wedding day makeup kit. The kit retails for just $32 and comes in a darling little box.
You can purchase it here! :)
photo credit: ookikioo
Dior Lip Glosses – Reviews of Our Top Picks
Dior Cosmetics is a high-end makeup brand with prices to match. Like anything by Christian Dior, you can definitely expect to spend quite a bit more than you would for an average cosmetics product. While you can probably argue that you can find just as good quality at places like MAC for a fraction of the price, everyone deserves to own at least one item from Dior – if only for the feeling you get when you pull the elegantly packaged product out of your makeup bag. And if you’re only going to own one Dior item, you can’t go wrong with a lip gloss. Dior’s top of the line glosses are the perfect splurge item for a bride’s wedding makeup look, a fun photo shoots or your next exciting date or special occasion.
Many of their devotees’ first foray into Dior was with their lip gloss. That’s because their glosses have an excellent reputation in the cosmetics world. Celebrities and fashion magazines alike sing its praises and with good reason.
Dior has been around forever but the first gloss that started getting a lot of press was Dior Addict. The Dior Addict Ultra Gloss Reflect is a shimmery gloss that is shiny without being sticky. Rose Denim is a cool toned rosy-pink color with a subtle blue shimmer. It is perfect for neutralizing colors that are too warm. If you have always wanted to wear a baby pink color but never thought you could pull it off, this is a great way to experiment because it’s very sheer and the intensity will vary depending on what you put underneath it.
Crème de Gloss is a gloss with a very high color payoff. In fact, it reminds me more of a liquid lipstick than a gloss. It could easily be worn on its own because it is not sheer like most glosses. The texture is about as perfect as a gloss can be. It’s very creamy and moisturizes without being sticky or drying out your lips. Fig Nectar is a highly pigmented plummy pink that looks great on both warm and cool skin tones. It also lasts longer than you would expect a gloss to last.
As part of their new DiorKiss line, Dior has also released their DiorKiss Luscious Lip-Plumping Gloss – a lip gloss available in eight translucent shades that plump your lips as they shine. Most of the shades have a iridescent shimmer to them. The lip gloss also features a special curved gloss applicator that allows for smooth and application.
Another Dior lip gloss fav of ours is Dior’s Addict Lip Polish – a lip primer and polish in one. This lip product mimics the effect of a lip primer with it’s unique formula of moisturizing hyaluronic microspheres and a high shine finish. The product also has a special spinning roll-on applicator that gives you an even, “just-right” amount of polish over your entire lip area.
Dior lip glosses are a great choice for anyone who is looking to treat themselves to an ultimate luxury pick-me-up. It helps you look great and feel great at the same time.
How to Apply Makeup Primer
[See the rest of our How to Apply Makeup series for beginners.]
Makeup primer is one of those beauty secrets that can make a big difference in the look and wear of your makeup. It preps your skin for makeup and creates a smooth base that makeup can adhere well to. If you’ve tried a foundation that looks fantastic on a friend or a model in a magazine only to be disappointed with the results, using makeup primers can make a big difference. Even if you are happy with the foundation you are currently using, a layer of cosmetics primer underneath can bring it to a whole new level.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you learn how to apply makeup primer:
Step 1: First you will need to use moisturizer. Putting any makeup on top of dry skin usually leads to trouble later in the day. Choose a light moisturizer as heavy creams tend to make primer slide right off your skin. Be sure to let the moisturizer sit for a few minutes to allow it to be absorbed into your skin.
Step 2: Pump or pour a small amount of the primer into your hand. Dip a damp foundation wedge sponge into the primer and dab it gently onto your face, beginning under your eyes and around your nose. (Note that some primers are packaged in such a way that you spritz them directly onto your face from the bottle.)
Step 3: Next, add the primer to your forehead, chin, nose, and cheeks.
Step 4: Using the same sponge, blend the primer into your skin. Be sure you cover all areas s evenly as possible, but it’s okay to use a little extra in places where your makeup tends to wear off quickly, such as in the T-zone or over large pores.
Step 5: Wait a few minutes for your primer to dry before applying foundation and concealer.
Step 6: Most foundation primers aren’t suited for the eyelids, but you can purchase a primer specifically designed for the eyelid. Eyeshadow is often the first makeup to fade during the day. A good eye makeup primer can help you get much more mileage out of even the cheapest eyeshadows. Just rub some into your eyelids before applying shadow to help your shadow stick to your lids all day.
Once you know how to use makeup primer, you’ll have an extra secret weapon at your disposal to help you achieve the ultimate in your makeup look for your next special occasion.
Teeth Whitening Options – The Basics
Achieving a whiter smile is at the top of every beauty maven’s list. Healthy, white teeth are essential to that classic, gorgeous look. If you’re going to wear brighter lipstick and lipgloss shades that draw attention to your mouth, you especially need to make sure your teeth are white. Nowadays teeth whitening is relatively easy and affordable. The trick is knowing your options and finding the one that will work best for you.
Teeth whitening options include home remedies, drugstore products, and professional treatments at your dentist or teeth whitening specialist. Depending on your budget and needs, you can choose from a range of treatments to find one that best suits you.
Home remedies for teeth whitening are certainly cheap but their effectiveness is questionable. The many home remedy solutions include rubbing teeth with mashed strawberries and brushing teeth with baking soda mixed with water. The general idea behind these home remedies is to use a slightly abrasive substance, usually something that can be found in your kitchen, to rub down stains on the enamel of the teeth, similar to the process of exfoliating skin. Only some stains will react to these remedies, however, and more stubborn stains may require an aggressive approach instead. In addition, home remedies for teeth whitening may take weeks to see any result. They also may be too hard on your tooth enamel causing irreversible damage.
Drugstore products for teeth whitening include teeth whitening strips, gels, toothpastes, and kits which include a whitening solution and a tray holder. There are numerous teeth whitening products that are popular for their price and effectiveness combined, such as the classic Crestwhite Strips. Drugstore teeth whitening products can whiten teeth in only a matter of days or weeks, and the results last on average from six months to a year. Since they are more affordable than professional whitening treatments, people on a budget usually opt for drugstore products, although they will need to use them every so often to maintain their white teeth. Trying free teeth whitening samples is a good way to test out a few products before forking out the cash. Once you know which products work best on your teeth, you will feel more confident spending money on a particular kit.
Professional treatments include in-office treatment using professional-grade bleaching systems. Dentists may also offer a cheaper take-home system using a mold of your teeth along with the a professional-grade bleach formula, although not as strong as the formula used in the office. A professional teeth whitening treatment performed by the dentist will offer guaranteed results and will last possibly up to two years or more. It is more expensive than the home remedy or drugstore options, but also offers the best results for super-white teeth.
Overall, remember to do your research when choosing your teeth whitening method. Make sure a product has good reviews from reputable sources before moving forward with a purchase. Each of these tooth whitening options has specific pros and cons. Using careful consideration, decide which one best fits your needs.
How to Apply Concealer
[See the rest of our How to Apply Makeup series for beginners.]
Concealer is a cosmetics life saver. Nearly everyone can benefit from concealer – even if they’re not planning on applying a full face of makeup. We all have little imperfections that we want to hide and concealer does a great job of this when applied properly. If you’re just starting out with this product, learning the proper concealer tips and application techniques is the key to using concealer makeup without it being obvious and drawing even more attention to your trouble spots. As with any cosmetics product, learning how to apply makeup products the right way will help you get the best look possible.
Step 1: Always use moisturizer first. Concealer can accentuate any dry, flaky spots. This is particularly important if you have been spot-treating pimples because the treatments tend to dry out the surrounding skin. Putting concealer onto flakes only makes the blemish more obvious and the concealer will simply eventually flake off. For best results, you may want to use a mild facial scrub prior to moisturizing. Some cleansers even contain a gentle exfoliating ingredient that is safe for everyday use, like Neutrogena’s Fresh Foaming Scrub.
Step 2: If you are wearing liquid foundation, it should go on first or you risk smudging or removing your applied concealer. On the other hand, if you are using a powder or mineral foundation, it is usually better to apply that after the concealer.
Step 3: Make sure the color you use is an exact match to your skin. It may be necessary to mix several shades together or add some of your foundation in order to achieve the desired color. If you are covering up noticeable skin problems, you may benefit from using a concealer with a slight corrective tint. Reddish blemishes or other skin conditions like rosacea can be canceled out with a concealer with a greenish corrective tint to it. Purplish or bluish under eye circles or veins near the inner corner of your eye or eyelid can be corrected by a yellowish tinted concealer. Keep in mind that these tinted concealers will be best for more noticeable problems. These concealers also require practice and precision to avoid looking funny once applied. For smaller blemishes, a regular concealer will be easiest to use.
Step 4: To apply concealer, use a tapered concealer brush and dot a very small amount of liquid or cream concealer directly on top of the blemish or discoloration. Blend outward. Apply more if needed, a little at a time, until you are satisfied with the level of coverage. Be sure to blend the outside edges of where you applied the product so that there are no noticeable lines.
Step 5: To cover areas of discoloration or uneven skin tone, spread a small amount of concealer over the entire area using your finger or a concealer brush. Then blend the perimeter to avoid obvious transition lines.
Step 6: If you are using concealer under your eyes, apply a few dots onto your dark circles and blend the concealer in lightly using your middle or fourth finger. A patting motion will give much better results than rubbing. Some women also apply a bit of concealer to the inner corner of their eyes (near the side of their nose) to help cover up bluish tints that sometimes appear there too. These eye concealer tips can help your eyes look brighter and help you look less tired.
Step 7: Apply some loose powder to set the concealer in place. Mineral foundation will also work well for this purpose.
Learning how to apply concealer correctly can help you create an even finish (even before you apply your foundation) which will help you achieve that coveted, flawless looking skin.