Wednesday, January 30, 2013

YSL Pure Chromatics Shadow Palettes

A few months ago I had picked up the YSL Pure Chromatics Shadow palettes while Sephora was having their VIB promotion.  I love that Sephora hosts these promotions because it gives me a chance to try out higher end products that I've had my eyes on for a discounted price.

I've been wanting to try the YSL shadows for a while, especially their Pure Chromatics line because they can be used wet or dry.  When swatched dry, the shadows come out very natural and light in texture.  But the fun comes in when you add water to the mixture.  Using the shadows with a wet brush brings a beautiful intensity and that added bit of drama for those ready to make a statement. Not only the color, but also the finish of the shadows really stand out when the shadows are used wet and the texture turns from a light powder to more creamy.

Of course I had to pick up two of the more neutral, easy going shades just to be safe, since I know I will reach for them more often if I like the colors.

The first quad I picked up is #8, which consists of Sandy Gold, Shimmery Pearl, Rich Gold, and Golden Green shadows.  The #8 quad is definitely one for the shimmery shadow lovers.  The shimmers are refined enough to apply without feeling grainy, but their presence is obvious.



The two lighter shades work well dry because they apply more natural and make the shades more wearable for anyone wanting to use them daily.  When used with a wet brush, the Shimmery Pearl shade tends to not apply so well (streaky), so I like to use it dry as a light highlight int he inner corners.  I love using Rich Gold wet as a nice center of the lid shade blended into the Golden Green.  It's a neutral smokey eye look that's different that the common browns or blacks.

The second quad is #11, consisting of Charcoal, Beige Sheen, Dark Brown Sheen, and Matte Black shadows.  I was drawn to these shadows because I mainly wanted it for the purpose of creating the more dark and sultry smokey looks, definitely not one for the shy girls.



The shadows in #11 dry are beautiful and wearable, but they are even more stunning when applied wet.  Unlike #8, I can apply all of the shadows in #11 wet without look overwhelming, or like a disco ball.  Because the shadows have more of a sheen rather than a shimmer, they look more appealing to most people, and because they balanced the quad by adding a matte black, this definitely makes the ultimate smokey eye palette.  I wanted to pick this up because even though they describe the shades as black and charcoal, I do see a bit of deep blue undertones, which looks beautiful with brown eyes.

Out of the two quads, I have to say that #11 is my favorite because it is more wearable and makes it more fun for me to play around with deeper shades.  #8 will definitely be one reserved for the more party type of looks.  But overall, with the texture, finish, and application, I feel like I am very impressed with the quality of the Pure Chromatics shadows.



Monday, January 28, 2013

The Trend Report: LACE

The Trend Report: LACE

Last week, Chicago really got hit by the cold Winter weather.  We were all bundled up and just trying to get through the cold (windy) days.  However, today is a total 180 from last week.  With the sun shining and a cool breeze, I am already getting myself excited for Spring (which is still a few months away).

With Spring already in my mind, it has me excited for Spring Fashion.  And one of the trends I believe will be big for Spring 2013 is Lace.

Lace can date back to the 16th century, where only people of the highest social status were able to dress with lace.  Now, it's a classic material used in all sorts of pieces that can be worn by anyone with any style.  Of course real, french, lace are just out of reach for most of us, but there are cheaper alternatives that we all can enjoy.

When it comes to clothes, there are two types of looks I enjoy with lace: Sexy and Feminine.  With both looks, I find the lace in the looks make the outfit look classic and timeless.

Some of my favorite pieces I've found are mainly dresses, but nowadays lace can be incorporated in many fashion pieces (from shoes to handbags).  So I decided to pick a few to highlight and share with all of you.

Feminine Styles:

Sexy Styles: 



Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Francesca's Collection Necklaces

If you have been following me for the past few month, you will know that I went through a phase (especially during the Holidays) where I was just obsessed with Francesca's Collection pieces.  I went to the store every time I was at the mall and would always find one or two items that I loved.  But because I went so often for gifts and such, I decided to just stop for a while because I found myself slowly getting bored with the store.  So because I was looking for a few jewelry pieces for a wedding I am going to I decided to return to Francesca's to see if they had any new pieces for the New Year.

Francesca's is also having a Buy One Get One 50% Off on all of their jewelry items (which is still going on online and in stores), and I wanted to be able to take advantage of that.

So I picked up two neutral/ivory toned pieces (figures I would go for neutrals) that caught my eye immediately.  I thought these two statement pieces would work so well with a lot of the outfits I would want to pair them with, and with them being statement pieces, the neutral tone makes it more wearable.  I love wearing statement necklaces like this with simple tops or dresses just to really amp up the look.  And because the colors are more toned down, they work well for any season.

I really love the necklaces at Francesca's.  The prices are a little bit more than Forever21 prices, but I find the quality of them much better and they tend to look more expensive than they are.



Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Urban Decay Giveaway!!!! (CLOSED)

I thought it would be nice to have my first giveaway of 2013 be the Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette.  The Urban Decay Naked line has definitely made a mark in the beauty world and the Naked Basics Palette (in my opinion) is one of the essential palettes to have if you are a neutral shadow lover. 

I have both the original Naked and Naked 2 palette, and at first I thought I'd skip out on the Naked Basics palette, but I feel that the Basics palette compliments the other two Naked palettes really well.  Having more matte/satin shadows on hand is always great because they make great blending colors that are more every day appropriate.

And because I have been enjoying my palette so much, I thought I'd share it with one of my lucky subscribers!

With that being said, here are the rules to enter.


1. Must be a follower of mine here on Blogspot (you can follow me by clicking on the follow button on the top left hand side).

2. Must be a follower and friend of mine on (My Luuux Page)

3. Must leave ONE comment on THIS POST.  You can comment/ask anything you'd like.

4. Must re-post this on either your blog, luuux, tumblr, etc. (LEAVE THE LINK TO YOUR RE-POST IN THE COMMENTS ALONG WITH YOUR COMMENT).

5. Must be 18 or older (or have your parents permission to provide me your mailing address).

This giveaway is open to BOTH International and U.S./Canada residents and will last until next month (ENDING ON SATURDAY, FEB 16th). 

Good Luck!!!

FTC: This is not a sponsored giveaway.  I am not getting paid or receiving anything for hosting this giveaway, and everything was purchased with my own money.



Lancome Dual Finish Powder

I have always been a fan of the Lancome Dual Finish Face Powder, but I did not pick up this particular shade to use as an all over face powder.  Being Winter and all my skin is a much lighter skin tone compared to the Summer, so you can imagine this shade does not match my skin tone.

 After years of learning how to use makeup, I've learned that if you can't find a specific product, you work your way around it and find substitutes that work just as well.  Because I've been on the perfect matte bronzer to use for contouring for a while now, I have given up on looking for a bronzing powder.  Instead, I just went straight to my favorite face powder and picked up the shade I thought worked well as a contour shade (without looking muddy) for my skin tone.

Lancome's Dual Finish Powder has an amazing texture, and being a matte finish makes it work well for a contour powder if you go a few shades darker than your skin tone.  The powder is silky smooth, and just blends beautifully into the skin.

I have other bronzing powders that I do enjoy (i.e. Tarte's Park Avenue), but for a more sculpted look, I thought this would be the best technique to achieve that evening out look that I might want.  I love the idea of using a face powder as a contour powder because the shade ranges for face powders are broader, giving you more options for your skin tone.

I would use a precision cheek brush to really work the product into the hollows of my cheeks blending up and out to the ear.  Also working the color into the temples of your forehead and along your jaw bone really slims down the look of your face (hence contouring) and looks beautiful in pictures.



Monday, January 21, 2013

Chanel Rouge Allure Lipstick in 112 Fantasque

Continuing my review on a few of the the Chanel Spring 2013 products, the last item I had picked up from the collection was the Chanel Rouge Allure Lipstick in the shade 112 Fantasque.  I have never tried the Chanel Rouge Allure lip color line, because I have my favorite lipstick has always been the Chanel Rouge Coco Shines (especially int he shade Boy and Flirt).  But because I loved how the texture of the Rouge Allure lipstick was while I was trying it on by the counter, and the color was a little bit hard to resist.

The Rouge Allure formula is a full coverage lip color with a satin finish.  It's hydrating enough to feel comfortable on my lips, and the color just glides on beautifully, making application easy and effortless.  I absolutely love my Rouge Coco Shine lipsticks, but these are bad and I have to say that their color range might be better than the Rouge Coco Shine line of lip products.

As for the color, Fantasque is just a beautiful, natural pink that I think can be worn every day and anywhere.  I think it's a very universal color that is flattering on most skin tones.  I have been enjoying this, and honestly it has been coing everywhere with me.  The staying power is just like any other lip color.  If you're eating or drinking, obviously (unless it's a stain), you'll have to reapply, but I don't mind.

I am in love with the finish of the Rouge Allure lipsticks, and because of that I think the Rouge Allure line suits me.  I don't like to wear gloss, so the satin finish it gives my lips works well and gives me that bit of shine.  This is definitely my new favorite lip color at the moment, and I definitely need to be careful because this can slowly be an unhealthy, and dangerous, obsession with the Chanel Rouge Allure lip colors.



Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Eyeliner

I did not expect myself to ever purchase a Chanel eyeliners, especially since there are more affordable options on the market.  However, the make up artist that day just sold me on the Chanel Spring 2013 Collection eyeliner in the shade Or Rose.

I had stopped by my favorite Chanel counter and they decided to play around with the products from the new Spring 2013 collection on me (since there wasn't much of a crowd that time).  So while she was doing my makeup, she had swiped the Chanel Stylo Yeux liner in Or Rose just on the bottom lash line and a bit int he waterline.  When I had looked in the mirror I was just amazed how much brighter and more refreshed my eyes looked just the color.

The Chanel Stylo Yeux liners are a water proof formula that gives you a long lasting look.  It's definitely a great formula because it does take a good eye make up remover (I use Lancome's Bi-Facil) to get this off of my eyes.  It's a simple twist up liner, which I don't mind as much because it makes it great for carrying around in my bag.

Or Rose is just a beautiful champaign rose color that gives this nice satin finish.  So it doesn't have the glitter that give you that overwhelming look, but still has the beautiful finish that give you that more awake and refreshed look.  The one thing a lot of people don't really like, and I was hesitant about was the softness (or lack of) of the product.  It's not as soft as a kohl pencil liner, so you do have to work a little harder to apply this, but you don't necessarily have to tug or pull at your skin to do so (like most believe).  The make up artist gave me a great tip on how to apply the liner.  Instead of pulling and pressing at the skin to apply the liner, hold the liner sideways and just sweep it across the bottom (or top) lash line.  You might have to go back and forth a few times for that desired look, but it definitely pays off and gives that great color.

I absolutely am loving this for every day, natural and refreshed make up look.  I was most attracted to the Chanel Spring 2013 collection because of their ad picture for the collection just screams natural beauty.  And Or Rose definitely plays a good part in achieving that look.



Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Diane von Furstenberg Mimosa Quilted Clutch

I have been trying to catch up on posts about a few of my favorite items I had received for Christmas last month, but definitely have been slow when it comes to posting the past few weeks.  Just trying to get back into the grind of things and out of that Holiday (lazy day) routine.

So my absolutely favorite gift I received was from my older Brother and his fiancĂ©.  My Brother and I am quite close, and because it’s only the two of us we hang out a lot when he is home.  He’s always bee there for me and I have always been there for him.  And because we only get to see each other a few times a year, we usually treat each other really well when it comes to Birthdays and Holidays.

This year I gave him the new PS3 console bundle that came with a game, which is something he’s been eyeing for a while.  And boy did he surprise me with this new bag that I’ve been constantly looking at online.

This is the Diane von Furstenberg Mimosa Quilted Clutch.  I don’t own anything from Diane von Furstenberg (until now), but have always admired her clothes and handbags.  I was first drawn to this bag because of the quilted detail (kind of Chanel-esque).  It’s a very classic looking clutch that is sculpted from leather.  The magnetic closure keeps everything secure and safe on a night out, and the gold crossbody strap can be worn across your body, shortened to be a shoulder bag, or taken off completely.

The size of the bag is perfect for a day/night out and stores all of my essentials.  I love wearing this on weekends while running errands or hanging out with my friends.  It works as my statement piece for any outfit and definitely draws a lot of attention.  I am definitely thankful to my Brother

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Monday, January 14, 2013

Chanel Illuminating Powder

Recently, I had picked up a few items from the Chanel Spring 2013 Collection (thanks to all of the Nordstrom gift cards I racked up over the Holidays).  At first I thought about just ignoring the collection because I didn't think I would need anything.  And although I was right about not needing anything from the collection, after watching Raeview's post and video about her thoughts on the collection, along with a great tutorial, I had a change of heart.

My favorite, and most luxurious, product from the Spring 2013 Collection has to be the Chanel Poudre Signee de Chanel Illuminating Powder.  At first look, it might just seem like any other highlighting powder (with very nice packaging), but it's definitely something special.  This limited edition, highlighting powder is a beautiful powder that brings that extra lift and life into your skin, without looking greasy.

It's honestly one of the most beautiful highlighting powders I have ever tried.  The formula and texture is just velvety and feels as smooth as butter.  And just with a soft sweep on the top of the cheek bones and down the bridge of my nose, I get that beautiful look that just brightens up my face.  It blends beautifully in the skin, and honestly wears well throughout the day.

The compact comes with a really different applicator, kind of a flat sponge that you're suppose to use to pressed the product onto your skin.  However, I just prefer using a nice fluffy brush to sweep the highlighter onto the skin.

Out of the entire collection, this would probably be my must have product.  It is limited edition and seems to be flying off of the counters pretty quickly, so if you are interested I would pick it up sooner rather than later.



Sunday, January 13, 2013

Henri Bendel Princess Bangle

I am finally having time to re-organize a little bit around my room and just putting everything I received from Christmas away (I know, it's been long overdue).  While I was cleaning up I found one of the Christmas gifts I had received from a very close friend of mine (sister from another mister?) and  it's honestly one of my favorite pieces that I have in my collection.

She knows my (unhealthy) obsession with Henri Bendel jewelry pieces, so she decided to send me the Princess Bangle in a deep grey shade.  The Princess Bangle, which is so appropriately named because of it being rimmed with crystals, is the ultimate girly piece.  It's dipped in gold and just adds that extra bit of glamour to any look.

You can definitely stack this with other bracelets and bangles, but I have been enjoying it on its own.  Making it the star piece on my arm.  It's the perfect size on my wrist and doesn't slide off easily.  It has a clasp, so it's definitely secure.

I love pairing this with a basic jeans and a tee shirt look.  Kind of a simple, but chic style.  I remember getting this in the mail and just putting it on immediately.  Definitely couldn't stop staring at my wrist that day, or any other day that I am wearing it.



Saturday, January 12, 2013

Deborah Lippmann Hot Me With Your Best Shot

I have always been a fan of Deborah Lippmann polishes, especially because their color line is just beautiful.  They definitely have some pretty unique colors in their line of polishes, and the presentation of the polish is just luxurious.  However, great quality and high prices sometimes don't always go well together.

I have never been disappointed with a Deborah Lippmann polish, until now.  Don't get me wrong, I still absolutely love the color of Hit Me With Your Best Shot, but that's just about all the polish has going for it.  The midnight blue color, with very tiny shimmers, makes it a great color for anyone that it a fan of an alternative shade to a black polish.  However, the application was not as smooth as other polishes out there (that are much more affordable), and the opacity is definitely not up to the standards that I hold Deborah Lippmann polishes to be.  It took 3 coats to get the full coverage look that I thought it would have with just one or even two coats.  And the formula of the polish is definitely a lot thinner (more runny) than I would have liked it to be.

I think I wouldn't be as disappointed with this polish if it had lasted on my nails.  I am ok if a polish takes a little bit more work to get the perfect look and color to it, however it better last.  Unfortunately, Hit Me With Your Best Shot did not last more than two days on my nails before chipping to the point where I just got annoyed with it.  I usually don't have this issue with my other Deborah Lippmann polishes, so it could just be the formula of this specific shade.

This doesn't mean I'm giving up on Deborah Lippmann polishes, but this definitely will motivate me to do my research on certain colors before running out to pick them up.



Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The Kleenex Factor

It's natural to have a little shine throughout the day, but do you really need to spend that extra money on blotting paper? For me, I usually get a little shiny around the nose and forehead around the middle of the day, and that's definitely not an attractive look to rock around for the rest of the day.  Yes, I've been the person to carry blot paper around with me, but honestly I find them a little pricey for the ones that really work to keep the shine away.  And the more affordable, drugstore options just don't work well enough for me to repurchase.

In my mind, blotting paper is not only suppose to remove the shine (and excess oil) that appears throughout the day, but also helps prevent anymore shine from appearing for the rest of the day.  I don't want to have to blot, and then re-blot a few hours later.

So what works for me? A simple, and very affordable Kleenex tissue.  It does wonders for removing shine and oil, and I don't find myself having to re-blot for the rest of the day.  What's even better is that with a Kleenex tissue, you get a bigger sheet to work with than those tiny little blotting sheets that you spend two or three times as much for.

The key is to separate the two layers of the Kleenex tissue, and use only one of the thin layers to blot away any shine or oil (so with one Kleenex tissue you technically get two blotting sheets).  I love that it removes the shine, without removing any of my makeup, so there's no touchup needed after blotting.  An added step you can take to really give you that matte finish, or to ensure that your makeup look lasts, is to dust a little bit of setting powder over the tissue while it's pressed against your skin.  This just gives you that extra setting without making it look like you used too much powder, therefore avoiding that chalky look.