Monthly Archives: August 2014

Clinique Acne Solutions Liquid Foundation Shade Extensions.

I like the Cream Chamois when used sparingly, but when I use it all over it is too light. I decided to stick with my number 3 color. Unfortunately there is no true tone that matches the color I am now (because of my leftover tan). I wish Clinique would expand into peachy light olive tones. Oh well 😔

I took a little trip to Macy’s today to try some of the new Acne Solutions Foundation from Clinique. This foundation is not actually new, but they just released a new powder formula as well as extended shades for their liquid formula. I’m a big fan of the liquid formula because it is the only kind of liquid foundation I can wear-from Clinique or any other line in general. It is perfect for breakout prone skin because it will not disturb your skin or cause any new breakouts. Most other foundations leave me with bumps on my cheeks, but this one keeps me clear and gets me so many compliments.

The only problem I ever had was finding an appropriate shade. In the dead of winter I wear Shade 2 Fresh Ivory (although I look a little Twilight-esque) and after a summertime vacation I jump to Shade 5 Fresh Beige. That is way too dark now, and although I have Shade 3 Fresh Neutral, I didn’t think it was quite right because of the slight pink tinge. So today I tried the two shades after Shade 3: Cream Chamois and Porcelain Beige.

They are pretty similar, you really can’t tell the difference in the picture, but Porcelain Beige may give my skin a little more life (although I see a slight demarcation by my jawline). Cream Chamois will probably be my new dead of winter shade, but for now I think I will do Porcelain Beige. Thank you to the consultant Beatriz at Macy’s in the Willowbrook Mall for the samples. I’m going to use them for now and probably purchase the powder in shade 6 during their GWP. The powder feels great, and I recommend checking it out.
There are many other colors that they added in, so you can visit Clinique’s website for a preview of the liquid shades. If you are shy to buy, you can always visit your local counter for a small sample to see how it works with your skin.
Btw: I included a picture of me wearing a light stain of the new matte lipstick in Matte Plum. All the new lip colors are gorgeous! I may swatch and post at another time.



A Weighty Post.

There is a story which my mother has told more than once about a costume fitting for my first dance recital. It was for my tap class and the dance routine was set to the song “Fuzzy Wuzzy Wuz A Bear”. The costume was a white satin leotard with a cotton candy pink feather trim. It was an odd costume interpretation for a song about bears, but Fuzzy Wuzzy wasn’t your typical bear. According to the song he had no hair, but I doubt he had a pink feather trim. I can’t say I remember the experience, but I do recall the pang of anxiety attached to it. I was the chubbiest in the class, and this was because I was “juicing”. I wasn’t “juicing” in the sense of using steroids or blending veggies with a vita-mix. I was drinking a steady diet of apple juice. Apparently it was all I would drink and my mother would let me drink it all day long in a bottle. There are plenty of things wrong with that statement, but for the sake of brevity I will avoid analyzing her decision.
When it came time for measurements it was noted how well nourished I was. I believe there was even some concern that I would not fit into a costume. Personally, I think this could have been avoided had we actually worn costumes that resembled bears instead of some awkward, satin, leotard suggestive of a vintage sexy-time outfit. To try to lose weight, I was taken off the juice. I probably cried in protest and maybe I even snuck to buy some juice on the street to ease the withdrawals. Eventually I learned to live a life without a steady nourishment of liquid sugar. As you can imagine, I lost weight. I lost so much weight that the costume which was ordered was suddenly too big come recital time. Luckily I was able to switch costumes with another girl who needed a bigger size. Maybe she had a growth spurt, or maybe she sold her soul to Motts. In any event, my costume now fit and crisis was averted, but this was the first scene in my lifelong story of weight insecurities, yoyo dieting, and food issues.
Before you click off this blog post or maybe lean into your screen with curiosity for the next words to follow, I must tell you this story will not be about the various ways food has ruled my life. My food issues range from things as relatable to constant dieting, to things that are not as relatable and a tad more serious. But there are enough stories out there like that and sometimes I’m tired of hearing about them too. Instead I will speak of my disdain for costume fittings, because even if I get into a groove of being cool with my exterior, a costume fitting is a tough reminder that I don’t fit into everyone’s ideal of visual beauty.
Although I’m overweight, I don’t hate my body. Do I have moments where I look at a picture taken at a three quarter angle and I say to myself, “Yeesh”? Of course! These moments are not as frequent as they were in my teens and twenties when I was absolutely obsessed with every inch and pound on me. The funny thing is, I was much thinner then and wish I appreciated my body, but I’ve learned to accept it as an adult in my thirties. There are moments when I am frustrated with my body, but I do not hate it. Instead I look at it as that loveable friend who just can’t seem to get it together for long periods of time. Do I wish I were thinner? Yes, but I don’t want to be as thin as I was. It took so much effort and mental exhaustion that I’m now ok with my current body. Realistically I would like to learn to keep a steady groove of healthy eating simply to remain well. I recognize the pitfalls of extra weight and I don’t want to develop things such as Type II Diabetes, but I’m not going to obsess and go crazy until I lose that weight. I have antidepressants to credit for my personal contentment. I can also give them some credit for my weight gain.
The idea for this story came to me yesterday as I was trying to find my own costume for a community theater production. I come from a professional performing background, but I strayed from it once I began working full-time in cosmetic sales. After three and a half years of full-time retail misery, I decided to leave my job. I’ve spent the last year freelancing in makeup while looking for full time work and preparing myself for graduate school. After turning down freelance work for a full time work opportunity which fell through, I was in a funk and bored out of my mind. I decided to accept a small character part in a play at a theater which puts on professional quality productions. It was supposed to be a fun distraction, and it has been, until yesterday when I found myself unable to fit into any tailored outfit at Forever 21.
I’m know I’m 15 years late to be shopping at Forever 21, but that store is a wonderland of cheap clothes which span the decades. It is a perfect place to try out new trends or get a quick costume for Halloween. I was there on a mission to find 1950’s inspired trends for my character in the show. It should be noted that costumes are provided by the theater, but I was trying to avoid the costume fitting because I knew how the scenario would play out. None of the vintage costumes they have will fit because I have no waist. Even when I was once so thin you could slice a steak with my collar bone, my body was a straight line. Now it’s more of a Roman column, with giant boobs. I am top heavy, with a full chest, pillowy arms, and a thick middle. Thankfully I’ve retained smaller hips and nice legs, but since I’ve gained weight it has been difficult to find things that are tailored. I stick to looser silhouettes or tops that gather with an elastic at the waistband. I’ve learned how to dress my figure, but now I had to dress for the 1950’s and there was no hiding anymore.
The 50’s celebrated the hourglass and I’m more of a clock. I’m just at the end of the spectrum of regular dress sizes, but in Forever 21 Land I was a plus size. Trying on a plus size was very confusing as I came in wearing a size medium skirt and cardigan. I found their plus sizes dresses to be small. In fact, if I was a full-time plus-size wearer I would be pissed at their version of a plus-size. It was a normal women’s size 10. After 40 excruciating minutes of trying on clothes and examining my body from multiple angles, I left with two blouses and a pleated skirt from the non-plus size section. Thank God for elastic waistbands.
This experience triggered memories of various moments in my life ranging from when I was thin, to overweight, to “just right’. When I was thin I could grab anything off the rack and if it didn’t fit it was because it was too big. When I was “just right”, most things fit but I didn’t appreciate it. Now that I’m overweight, I was taken back to my high school experience when I was always looking for the loosest size large or the elastic waistband that had the most give.
What was more uncomfortable than this shopping experience, was the phone calls I had to make to the costumer and producer explaining that I will try to find my own clothes. It makes me a pain in the ass, although in my head I’m just trying to create the least amount of anxiety for myself and everyone else. It cost me close to 60 dollars, but the peace of mind is well worth it.
Tonight I will model my self-selected wardrobe for publicity shots and hopefully my clothes will be approved for the show. I dread this experience. I dread the conversations about nothing buttoning over my 36D boobs, or my waist trying to bust out of any costumes they may have for me. I pray that I can skate by with these looks which I’ve crafted for myself. This bit of anxiety could possibly give me the motivation to finally commit to a healthier lifestyle, but food is an addiction and like any addict I’ve made promises that I haven’t kept. Instead of beating myself up, I will speak to my body like a friend who I love but maybe just want to see get better. I will say to myself, “You look fine and I love you just the way you are, but maybe you could stay on track to make your life a little easier.” I hope I listen, but I will love myself unconditionally anyway.

Liquid Lip Color: Part 2

L’Oreal Extraordinaire by Colour Riche

Jeez that’s a long title for a tube of lip color, but this lip color has a lot going on. If you notice I call it a “lip color” because it really isn’t a lipstick, lip gloss or balm, but a recipe of all three. That is the big trend these days, and in regards to the drugstore competition I feel L’Oreal’s product is superior to Maybelline’s Color Elixir.
Let’s discuss…
Yesterday I reviewed Maybelline’s Color Elixir and despite the massive variety of shades and color depths I just could not wear it because of the smell. L’Oreal’s product doesn’t have a terrific scent, but it is not as pungent as Maybelline’s and it fades as you wear it. I can’t really describe it, but I know it doesn’t smell like paint drying and that is something to celebrate. This line consists of many flattering color tones which are mostly opaque. My favorite feature is the stain they leave behind once the slick part of the gloss disappears. I wouldn’t exactly say they are moisturizing, but they feel good on the lips and they didn’t dry my lips out.
1. Blushing Harmony is the shade to try if you are overly cautious and looking for something to enhance your lip tone. It is soft and feminine and it was actually the first color I tried. I liked it so much I went and got some more! I tell you, lip colors are like potato chips because you really can’t have just one.
2. Coral Encore is a fun, pinky citrus which I will rock for the remainder of the summer. I get a lot of compliments on this one when I wear it, although you wouldn’t know because I decided to choose a serious face for the picture. Trust me, I’m happy :l
3. Dancing Rose is a pretty pink with a hint of lilac. I love this color because it’s very feminine, but it has a little more spunk to it. I don’t know why the name of it makes me think of Rose Nylund from The Golden Girls. Even so, it’s fresh and youthful.
4. Caramel Solo is pretty, but honestly it is my least favorite of the bunch. It looks like pure milk chocolate going on (hello 1990’s!). Luckily it turned to a pinkish brown on me. I didn’t feel it enhanced my complexion, but I may appreciate this more in the Fall.
5. Plum Adagio is not for the shy! It is a bold, almost vampy kind of purple that requires a generous amount of patience to apply as well as a fierce attitude to wear. I was not a fan of this when I first swiped it on (note the lemon face), but once I gave it one blot I was good to go. I will definitely save this for the Fall, and I look forward to wearing it.
There are 16 shades in total and as much as I love the line, I think I’m good with the ones I have. I wish they would create a few more violet tones because I do not care for the look of the Purple Prelude as it is very gray.
*Just an FYI, Ulta has these on sale for a buy one get one 50% off AND you can use your 3.50 off coupon. That brings them down to about 6 bucks each. They usually retail between $7.49 and $9.99 depending on the
store. Look for my last review of Liquid Lip Color Part 3 when I review the version from Golden Rose Cosmetics.







Liquid Lip Color- Part 1

Maybelline Color Elixir
The next big thing for lips is the liquid lipstick. The idea is to have a perfect marriage of color, comfort, and shine. After testing out L’Oreal’s Colour Riche Extraordinare and Golden Rose Cosmetics’ Luxury Rich Color Lip Gloss, I decided to try Maybelline’s Color Elixir. Considering Color Elixir came out before the L’Oreal and Golden Rose versions I was curious to try the originator of this trend.
Maybelline describes the Color Elixir as, “The color of a lipstick, the cushiony care of a balm, and the glass shine of a gloss”. The line consists of 20 shades which range from natural shades to colors so intense they punch you in the face.
Unfortunately the softer, more flattering tones such as “Rose Redefined” and “Mauve Mystique” have very little staying power. They looked amazing when first applied, but within 20 minutes they were but a faint memory. This was a little disappointing because it didn’t disappear after eating or drinking, it was just after 20 minutes of purely existing.
I decided to exchange the Mauve shade for something with a little more kick, so I opted for “Vision In Violet”. This color is so pigmented, but it is way too much! I think it would be amazing for deeper skin tones but for me, not so much. I felt like a Bratz Doll. After barely slicking on one coat of this purple madness I blotted it down to a stain. It was much prettier but all the moisture benefits were erased so it just felt like I had paint on my lips. It smelled like paint too.
Now let’s talk about the smell. Oh, the smell! Many bloggers have described this lip product as having a “soap” aroma. I would describe it as a strong, chemical scent and I think it actually gave me a headache.
The Color Elixir experience had me feeling like Goldilocks. I couldn’t seem to find a shade that was just right in terms of something which is both flattering and long lasting. I loved the “Rose Redefined” shade, but the awful scent lingers longer than the actual color.
I suppose I will just stick to my other liquid lipsticks from Golden Rose Cosmetics and the L’Oreal Colour Riche Extraordinaire line. Look for my reviews on those in the next week.



Tasty Beauty Goodness

Let’s talk about a shower product that can make you hungry and satisfy your sweet cravings all at once. This is the Lemon & Cream Supremely Rich Body Wash from be Delectables.
Many times, sweet body washes have that pungent fake chemical smell, but this one is realistic lemon custard goodness. It’s not too strong and it leaves a faint powdery scent once you are dry.
It is available at Kohl’s for 10.00, but we all know the Kohl’s discount game. Right now they are already on sale, so if you borrow a 30% coupon from your mom, aunt, neighbor, etc; you can get this delicious bad boy right now for around 5 dollars each! That’s an amazing price for 8oz! Just don’t hit up the Kohl’s in Clifton because some obsessed woman in her 30’s bought the last two 😉

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Robin Williams And The Dialogue For Mental Health

It’s a positive thing to have the tragic death of Robin Williams finally inspire a dialogue about depression, but he was actually Bipolar. Does that change your perception? Does that give you an uneasy feeling? Mental Illness, or “Mental Health” as one Psychology Today article called it, is so common that it affects 1 in 4 people in some way. Yet we stigmatize most people who openly suffer; from the homeless person on the street, to the addict friend who just can’t seem to get it together. With people using terms like “schizo”and “bipolar” to describe their bosses or even the weather, it is no wonder that many people feel ashamed and either choose not to seek help or feel like they they are unable to get better.
So my point is to keep the discussion going, but don’t forget about this awareness and sensitivity towards these diseases once they are not “trending” anymore.