Saturday, December 28, 2013

New Year's Rezzies

Not reservations. With 2 and 3 year olds I reserve the hours of 9-midnight to myself.  I might let my hubbie in on the fun if he's being nice.  For this post I'm talking resolutions.  Note that most of them have something to do with beauty, fashion, or health, or all three.  I think this is not uncommon.  Nothing is as obsession worthy as one's image, interestingly. 

Drink more water, 8 X 8.  This is the key ingredient I'm missing in my skincare routine, not to mention my general healthcare routine which has become non-existant in the last year.  I think water is sooo boring.  And, seperately (sort of), I bore easily.  Which boredom translates eventually into me loving alcohol.  Which I'm not ready to cut down on.  So rather than resolving to drink less alcohol, I'm resolving to drink more water.  8oz 8 times a day is supposed to be a minimum, but that's my starting point.  I will up the doseage of this important drug if necessary.

No new shoes for a year.  I know.  Blasphemy.  What is the point of being a fashion and beauty blogger?  All I can say is that I'm going back to basics fashion-wise, and I have basics when it comes to shoes.  In spades.  I have FOUR pairs of nude pumps, NOT including THREE pairs of work-appropriate nude sandals.  And there is plenty more to blog about.  I'm betting on it.  This is going to be a challenge though.  Probably the biggest of the list.

Find a job that I like. I didn't say love. I'm trying to be a realist here.  But I want to be able to put it away on the weekends and have some piece of mind that when my kids start school I'll be able to pick them up at 3pm, at least a couple times a week. 

Potty train both kids. Self explanatory.

Grow my hair out.  I cropped it last May.  Like chin-length bob.  Now it's a little lower than my collar bone.  But I want to return it to it's former mid-back length glory. I like to throw one easy one in there. Or one that will happen whether or not I try hard at it.  Or one over which I have no control. This satisfies all three.

Tackle liquid eyeliner.  I hate pencils.  I'm just going to say it.  Especially since I have really dry eyelids, so I moisturize them.  So pencils look good for about 7 minutes.  I'm really mad at how hard liquid is.  Because I love how it looks.  I'd love to master it...although I realise even the masters have trouble at it.  Why is this such a hard technique? 

Make $500 from things I already own.  I've developed a hobby of selling things on ebay and in thrift stores.  I've never really tracked how much I make and it's really a marginal activity of mine.  But I think $500 would be a respectable and realistic number.  I have a coach handbag and wallet and a Bose sounddock I need to get rid of.  Not to mention piles of both summer and winter clothes for plato's closet and crossroads to peruse.  I was going to put something like "be an anti-hoarder," but I already am one and I think goals need some specificity. 

More lip color.  This is the last frontier of makeup for me.  I've crept slowly since high school from even complection to eyes to contouring.  Lips have not yet been a high priority, whether because of my age or time limits.  But lately, it seems time.  Even when I stick to nudes, it makes SUCH a difference.  And I'm realizing that I look like a different person (in a good way) in certain non-neutrals. My plan: go outside of my comfort zone with color, and do some lip liner research. 

ORGANIZE.  Everything.  My house is 1350 sq feet of 1950's architecture and piping. It houses two toddlers, two adults, and a dog.  And the garage is near unuseable due to rat problems.  I am becoming more of an anti-hoarder as I type.  But it's not just being diligent about getting rid of things.  It's about not buying more crap and organizing what I have.  A sub-resolution could be: only buy what I came here for.  I succeeded in this by NOT buying the cutesy owl jewelry rack I saw in target today, I need less clutter, not more.  Better to invest in storage devices, not tabletop clutter machines.  So I will likely buy a larger jewelry box and donate the old one, rather than putting more crap on my dresser.  I want to be one of those people with really organized files and inboxes too.   Once I get my awesome job and all.

That's it for now, what are yours?

Friday, December 20, 2013

Oh holy grail

After spending much time and money on improving my skin, I've decided that, although things have improved in the clarity, tone, and elasticity department, I still could use a bit more coverage than my favorite favorite beloved tinted moisturizer (chanticaille's just skin) can offer.  I really can't say enough about that stuff, except that it's only SPF 15.  And it's very very expensive for a TM.  So off I went to the Chanel counter, naturally.  The blogosphere has been abuzz for a while now about the vitalumier line and Les Beiges.  I couldn't wait to try them, I even braved the xmas rush.  I had my heart set on the Vitalumier creme compact for a base.  The texture is heaven, it's moisturizing...the color selection, like too many of chanel's face makeup offerings, is horrible. So was the help. I picked up the lightest shade, it was too yellow.  So I asked the salesgirl for the tester of beige rose.  "I have red undertones," I explained.  "You might not want to highlight that," was her reply.  Thanks chanel girl!  The point is I want the makeup to match my skintone...that is base 101 stuff.  She insisted the lighter, yellower color would neutralize the redness.  It didn't, of course.  It just gave me a yellow cast and made me look like an alcoholic.  I ignored her and continued with my experimentation.  I did get my hands on the 22 (beige rose) but it was too orange. Disaster.  I was so disappointed.  I was very close to giving up on Chanel, I don't think I've ever seen such horrible color selections from any makeup brand, high or low end.  Not to mention quality control on the sales consultants.  It really does compromise a brand's credibility when I run into uneducated, pretentious, and dead-wrong consultants.  I suddenly feel like the brand is trying to put one over on me and that I'm smarter than that.  Anyway, in terms of bad color from Chanel, check out the Vitalumier Moisture-Rich Radience liquid in 007, i saw this online (the color on line is really really light, see Nordstrom's photo) and thought "perfect!" - an off-white shade, that is usually what ends up working for me.  In the real world though, it's yellow, and darker than most of the 20's shades in the other foundation formulations.  I wish I could do a side-by-side, it's grossly misleading.  Why does Chanel think everyone is dark orange or dark yellow? 

The diamond in the rough for me was Perfection Lumiere in shade 12 (beige rose).  It took three trips to two different chanel counters to discover this little bottle of heaven, but perfection it is. Great formula, even application, I don't end up with little dots of color over my pores like with SO many foundations (Chanticaille's just skin is the only other formulation that doesn't do this, just sayin.'  Even the Guerlain had to go back.).  The only thing wrong is that it does contain alcohol.  Not sure how I feel about that.  It's the seventh ingredient, I think I can overlook it.  My trusty Smashbox HD 15-hour makeup doesn't have alcohol, but Guerlain foundations do.  Not sure of the insistance on this horrible ingredient, I think it helps the formula stay fluid, maintain a longer shelf life, and then dry matte.  Alcohol is the number one reason I didn't even try vitalumier aqua ultra-light - it's the THIRD ingredient.  And it's one of the most popular face bases around.  Any comments on this from anyone?

Anyway, in terms of application, I use my bobbi brown foundation brush for the perfection lumiere and found my holy grail of powder foundation brushes in BareMinerals Precision Face Brush.  It's amazing.  I use it for the Les Beiges on days when I just need a light, quick, cover (hello weekends!) and the combo is magic.  Les Beiges covers better than most TMs and leaves a just-shy-of-luminescent glow.  That is to say there is no detectible glitter but my face still seems reflective and glowing after applying it to bare, moisturized skin.  I love it.  This might be a double-buy...that is one for home, one for the makeup bag. 

But I'm serious about this precision face brush.  I've tried others including the Shiseido perfect foundation brush, Bare Minerals is king here and I am NOT into their products, this just happened to stick out.  I love the brush so much I bought the retractable one to keep in my bag for touch ups.  I'm thinking of returning my Chanel powder brush cause you won't need another powder brush after you try the BM precision.