“These are a few of my favorite things…”
Ladies (and gentlemen — hey, it is Hollywood) are always asking me “What do you use?” “Where is that from?!” “How did you do that?”. Have you ever been told that a woman should never share her (beauty) secrets? Well, I’ve never been one to follow the rules.
Behold! My favorite products:
Mascara – Benefit They’re Real! This is like crack for your eyelashes. Get it over and over again.
–Maybelline Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner One of the best perks of this product is the amazing little liner brush that it comes with. It’s the perfect shape and size to create the desired line, regardless of style. The gel itself truly lives up to its name, lasting even through my 12-hour work days. The consistency is creamy, highly-pigmented, and easy to layer if needed. For a super-matte finish, gently tap black eyeshadow over the top.
–Make Up For Ever Kohl Pencil This product is formulated for use on the lower and upper rims of the eyes, but feel free to use it on the outside of your lash line as it smudges and blends wonderfully. I love love love this liner in black when creating a smoky eye. Try using the white pencil to line your waterline for an eye-opening effect, or a teal shade for a pop of color.
–Stila Smudge Crayon waterproof eye primer, shadow, and liner in one. This creamy pencil comes in a variety of colors, is a great multitasker, and comes with a built-in sharpener on the bottom. Pick up the color “Smoke” to smudge onto your eyelid and line under the eye.
Primer (Eyes) – Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion This product is just phenomenal. I refuse to put event the lightest shadows on without it. What it does: Creates a silky canvas for your eyeshadow, allowing it to glide on effortlessly in its most-vibrant color, while lasting for hours with no creasing. I know I said that I’d be shameless with this blog, so here it goes. I wore my eyeshadow for 2 nights in a row without needing a touch-up! Gross? Whatever, it was Vegas. I’m break-out prone so I always still wash my face off at night, and in the morning shower. I used a sponge to spot-wash (sans the eyes) twice AND slept on it and it was still perfect! You won’t regret this purchase.
Under Eye Concealer – Benefit Erase Paste Of the three shades available, I’ve found that Medium works best for me. The undertones are a salmon/peach so it’s really only for under eye circles, not blemish coverage (see Full Concealer). This product is so wonderful at covering up any degree of dark circles. It comes in a pot and works best when warmed up a little from the body heat on your finger tip. Start by applying it sparingly, as it does tend to crease up a bit when layered thickly. I use it in the corners of my eyes (in the area between the bridge of my nose and where my eye begins) and then pat it underneath. If you don’t get too dry, set it with a light powder to give it more staying power and help prevent any smudging of eyeliner or mascara. Out of the box use: Erase Paste makes a great shadow primer too! Tip: Be sure to always use a great eye cream first to keep the area moisturized. This will make blending of makeup ten times easier.
Moisturizer – 100% Pure Organic Jojoba Oil There’s always the common misconception that putting oil on your face will make you more oily. When using just enough, jojoba oil is said to balance the skin’s oil production. Why? Because jojoba is not really an oil, but actually a “wax ester” that is nature’s closest compound to the oil produced by human skin. Seriously, everyone should have a bottle of this stuff at home. I use it as moisturizer, lip balm, shine serum for my hair (just a couple of drops!). If I’m feeling super dry I’ll mix a drop or two in with my routine daily moisturizer and sleep with it straight lathered on at night. It’s natural, healthy, and free of chemicals. :)
Tinted Moisturizer #1 – Stila Illuminating Tinted Moisturizer This light moisturizer has a number of out-of-the-box uses. Apply all over face before foundation (or alone with a bit of bronzer for that “no makeup” look) to achieve a fresh, dewy complexion. It has a peachy tint to it, so you can also apply it under the eyes to help cover and brighten dark circles. To use as a highlighter, tap and blend onto the cheekbones, brow bones, bridge of your nose, and the cupid’s bow of your upper lip.
Tinted Moisturizer #2 – ProActiv Sheer Tint Moisture Whether you’re a ProActiv user or not, this tinted moisturizer works wonders. I apply it over my daily moisturizer to assist with blending. It doesn’t give heavy coverage, so if you need to hide darker spots see Benefit’s Boi-Ing Concealer below. It does, however, leave you with a nice, even skin tone. With the ProActiv name on it, you can be sure that it won’t cause breakouts.
Liquid Foundation – Napoleon Perdis Sheer Genius Want to look flawless & photoshopped? Ding ding ding! I truly believe this makeup has actually helped to clear my complexion. Of course, when paired with the amazing primer. (see Primer below Close Second: Make Up For Ever HD Foundation
Primer (Face) – Napoleon Perdis Auto Pilot With Chamomile, Yarrow Extract, and Vitamin E, this primer soothes redness and hydrates while cooling the skin and prepping your pores for makeup. Apply a dime-sized amount all over your face and immediately follow with your fave foundation.
Full Coverage Concealer – Benefit Boi-Ing This award-winning concealer now comes in five shades (originally three), each with golden undertones, making it the perfect product to cover any gal’s imperfections. Use Boi-Ing to cover under eye circles, blemishes, hyperpigmentation, etc. To help blend this industrial-strength concealer, warm it up a bit between your thumb and index finger.
Bronzer – Tarte Mineral Powder Bronzer in Park Ave Princess. The product is oil-, talc- and fragrance-free and formulated without parabens, sulfates, petrochemicals, and phthalates. No irritation here! It has a light shimmer (not glittery) so it’s perfect for summer or to perk up your winter g-low. For a deeper bronze, try the Hotel Heiress shade.
Highlighter – Benefit High Beam A true supermodel product. This soft pink highlighter looks amazing on any complexion. Dot and blend onto your cheekbones, under the brows, cupid’s bow, bridge of your nose, etc. for delicate definition. Out of the box: mix a little with your matte foundation or tinted moisturizer for a dewy glow. High Beam is princess in a bottle.
Lip Balm – Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment Heaven-sent product to spoil your lips. With SPF 15, 6 different tints (clear, coral, honey/nude, passion fruit, plum, and rose), and real sugar, this naturally sweet balm will have you craving more. I have sworn by this splurge for years. Don’t let the price tag ($22.50 at Sephora) discourage you, as this one is worth every penny.
Lipstick – MAC Lipstick in Angel (pink nude), Viva Glam Gaga (pale cool pink), Creme D’Nude (neutral nude), Vegas Volt (bright coral), New York Apple (plum-raspberry red frost), Ruby Woo (bold matte blue-based red — be sure to use a great lip brush for this one).
Ultimate Lip Liner – Nars Lip Liner Pencil in Tonga (pink amber). This shade makes the best nude or pink lip when paired with MAC’s Angel, Gaga, or Creme D’Nude.
Hair & Nails
Shampoo – Pureology NanoWorks I know this stuff puts a dent in your cute little wallet, but if your hair is in need of some real TLC, feed it Pureology in the gold bottle. It will love you forever.
Conditioner – Loreal Nature’s Therapy Mega Moisture Nurturing Creme My awesome hair stylist had me grab this product (about $18 for the tub) and I can’t stop raving about it! She originally told me to use it as a hair mask, but I can’t resist using after every shampoo. Just get it, trust me.
Strong Hairspray – Bed Head Hard Head This stuff is a force to be reckoned with. I don’t recommend using it on everyday curls that you’d like to run your fingers through, because that definitely won’t happen. I’ve been told by runway stylists that they use Hard Head when they want a big, wild, indestructible ‘do. I find it most useful for up-dos and photo shoot curls.
Soft Hairspray – Chi Enviro Flex Hold Firm Hold Even though it says “firm hold” in the name, this formula is the ultimate flexible hold. It’s perfect for curls that you brush through and for teasing your roots or a ponytail without getting sticky. Get some, trust me.
–Essie – Lovie Dovie, Tart Deco, Clambake, Red-y Set Ex, Sand Tropez
–OPI – Bubble Bath, My Chihuahua Bites, Got a Date To-Knight, Happy Anniversary!, Alpine Snow (works as a great base for bright colors as well)
–Sally Hansen – Shell We Dance?, Commander in Chic, Black Platinum