Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Lipstick, a year in review...............

This year, its been a CRAZY ride - busy and inspiring are two key words. One thing that has really transpired this year, is my settling into a makeup routine that I fell comfortable and inspired by. Perhaps some of that has to do with the Deep Autumn Palette that I've been wearing - It just seems to fit so well. I also think that my look has matured over the years - I know what works, what doesn't, what I like, what I don't............. its really about finding a personal style, which is the key to true beauty and elegance!!! Find YOURSELF amist the makeup chaos :) ANyhow, as promised, here are some looks that I've been inspired by lately and I'm finding that I've really settled on 3 lipsticks which I wear consistently - MAC's Mocha and Taupe and most recently, Revlon's Rum Raisin:

Lets start with my favourite shade, perhaps of ALL TIME which is a 'huge' statement coming from me, considering that my journey throughout this blog has been on finding that perfect, signature shade. For everyday, Taupe has everything I need - the right depth, the right colour, the right consistency, the right price :) - the 'only' thing that I could change about Taupe is the name - it deserves a more sophisticated name!!!

Ahhhh, Mocha, what can I say about this shade - its been by my side the entire time I've been playing around with all the autumn shades and it still works. Its got that beautiful balance between peach-brown and a hint of pink! Its an everyday staple for me!!!

Finally, for that richer, more dramatic shade, Rum Raisin by Revlon is simply divine. It's like a 'day into night' shade, one that works with 'everything', yet it also seems to pull everything together - maybe because it leans deeper, but still quite natural/neutral looking! Its not a bright red or even in the red family, but it has that elegant effect!!! So, here is it, my top lipstick picks, the shades that have been by my side this year. I can't end this post, by also writing about the other makeup that I've been wearing - I've been sticking to the SAME routine and loving the freedom of having 'signature shades' that work with everything. So here is goes - in every photo above, I'm also wearing the following: Physicians Formula Gold/Bronze Highlighter Sunbasque blush by MAC, its by new 'holy grail' blush - its actually the ONLY one I wear these days - I love it!!! Smolder eyeliner smudged with Brun eyeshadow by MAC (this is literally ALL I use on my eyes, other than a light swipe of the Physicians Formula highlight - I guess you can say I'm taking a break from heavy shadows these days) Black Mascara - I'm wearing MAC mineralize mascara, but my absolute favourite is my standard Loreal Voluminous mascara!!! I would love to hear from you - what are some of your stand by shades? What new things that you discovered this year? I look forward to blogging A LOT more in the new year!!! :) Merry Christmas to all those Celebrating today - Tis the Season to be MERRY!!!

Thursday, December 11, 2014


I haven't written a post in about a month, but please don't get discouraged - I did put this blog 'on-hold' a while back, but I am back in business and I have so many new ideas and things I want to write about. With everything going on at work and home, its sometimes hard to find the time to complete a post, but I've been playing around with so many new looks - stay tuned for some great looks. Before I start posting my looks, I have a question for all of you - HOW MANY LIPSTICKS DO YOU THINK A WOMAN REALLY NEEDS??? I look forward to hearing your responses to this question!!!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Taupe Lipstick - MAC

I love rediscovering a classic lipstick shade. Its like tasting a great wine and knowing that you've experienced this before, but now it just seems better for some reason. That is exactly how I feel about Taupe lipstick by MAC. Its a lipstick I often dismissed before because, lets face it, the name is kinda 'borning' - its not an alluring or sexy name, its 'taupe'! I sometimes wonder why this shade is even called 'taupe'? Its not a blah colour at all, in fact, its one of MAC's most complex and polished shades. Its a sophisticated mix of red and brown, but its fairly neutral - its not overly deep and dramatic, yet its very classic and chic. Its my personal opinion that this lipstick deserves a a chic name. However, the philosophical me also understands that 'taupe' can suggest a kind of 'neutrality', a simplicity, which is the key to a euro-chic look! Regardless of why taupe is 'taupe', its one of my newely re-discovered favourite shades. In this photo I'm wearing it as it is, yet for evening, taupe is beyond 'stunning' with paired with a spicy red liner like brick or auburn (perhaps that will be my next post). In this photo, I decided to stay with the polished up neutral theme - I did a classic natural eye, using Bronze eyeshadow by MAC from lid to crease, Marcelle's 'dark brown liner' smudged with MAC's 'Brun' eyeshadow - black mascara to finish. I applied a mix of refined golden bronzer and coppertone on my cheeks (both my MAC) and applied a swipe of Taupe lipstick! I really love this look for everyday 'polished'! It takes no longer than 5-10 min, and the makeup harmony is perfect! If you've wanted to try taupe, but feel its a borning shade, give it a chance, it may end up being the most 'chic' lipstick in your case!!!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

My Most 'Desired' Makeup Look

If there is one makeup look that is symbolically me - its the subtle smokey eye/quasi-natural lipstick look. I don't know if its because of my warm, rich skintone or just preference, but I've never really looked good in a nude lipstick - it just looks chalky and unrealistic, but put me in a soft brownish shade with a hint of red/peach, and its neutral perfection. These days, Touch lipstick is my go-to shade!!! It my neutral 'perfection' shade!!! I decided that I wanted to play up the deep autumn colours and stay true to my smokey/neutral lip style! I decided to create a look that really embraced both elements, starting with my 'basic face'. I usually start with a concealer and tinted moisturizer, but I really wanted to play up the richness of 'deep autumn' by using a bronzer. This would be awesome for many of the warm seasons, but particualarily 'natural' for the deep autumn. I continued with my favourite 'Coppertone' blush by MAC. For the eyes, I decided to try something a bit different. I used a cooler toned base by Sephora that would be in the 'deep category' - its a shadow stick called 'deep taupe' - I applied this to my lid and smudged it with my finger into the crease. I then used MAC shadows in soba and goldmine, mixed the two shades and applied this to the lids only. I lined by eyes with Smolder eyeliner by MAC and used the bronze shade in the Dior 'amber design' palette to smudge into the upper lashline before finishing with black mascaera. I swiped on 'Touch' lipstick to complete the look. I have to admit that so far, this is probably my 'favourite' look - its the ideal combination of my best season and my best style. I'm at the point in my makeup journey where I've come to terms with what I feel is my 'BEST' version of myself and now its just a matter of fitting all the peices together. The puzzle is almost complete and I'm so inspired with the next step in my makeup/style evolution!!!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Deep Autumn Envy

Kristin Kreuk is often the celebrity highlighted as a stunning Deep Autumn - her features are warm, deep, rich, yet leaning slightly neutral into cool. She's most definitely an autumn, but not 100% true warm. I noticed this similarily with myself after comparing multiple true autumn photos to deep autumn photos. I'm 100% certain than I'm an autumn, but I'm not uber-warm. I think that after looking at the deep autumn palette, the words that come to mind are deep, rich, stunning. There is something 'etoxic' about the deep autumn. I wanted to compare a photo of Kristin and myself - not because I think we look alike, but because our features have that similar deep and rich effect! I think I'm 'REALLY' going to enjoy claiming this season as my own - the palette is so rich and elegant and I'm already thinking what colour combinations I can play around with! I've always been envious of Deep Autumn, so claiming it is a pleasure!!! :)

Balancing Deep Makeup Shades

I'm finding that now that I'm revisiting Deep Autumn, I'm going back to some of my absolute favourite lipsticks - particularily the rich, warm reds. Recently I've been playing around with the deep orange-brown/red shades. I have to say that right now one all my all time favourite combination is Mahogany lipliner with So Chaud listick by MAC. This morning I was playing around with a warm look, but trying to balance the eyes with something a bit more neutral. I ended up applying coquette shadow by MAC, lining my eyes with MAC's liner 'Raven' and then smuding that liner with a cooler brown dior shadow (if I had to compare it with a MAC colour, it would be very similar to 'concrete'). I think that finding balance between cool/warm is key, especially if you fit somethere in the neutral category. I tend to have 'cooler' eyes, so I find that the deep blues, black and aubergine shades suit by eyes, but I can have fun going 'warmer' on my skin with bronzer, blush (such as coppertone) and then going with a 'va-va-voom' lip shade like a true red or orange-red! Right now some of my all time favourite products are: MAC Ruby Woo lipstick MAC SO Chaud Lipstick YSL #10 eyeshadow quad Marcelle Dark Brown eyeliner MAC Smolder eyeliner MAC Mahogany Lipliner MAC Coppertone BLush NARS Mambo eyeliner and last but not least DIOR amber design eyeshadow palette!!!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Style Looks - Casual

I recently read in a style book that there are essential 4 different types of looks: casual, polished day, evening glam and cocktail elegant. I've decided that I want to create a look for each style type. Today I'm starting with a basic casual look. The makeup I'm wearing here are colours I keep coming back to and it literally takes me less than 10 minutes to put this looks together - its great for a casual weekend look, going for lunch, shopping with friends etc.
I started this look with my basic face of concealer, tinted moisturizer, bronzer, then added Coppertone blush by MAC, a classic eye of soba shadow, Marcelle dark brown eyeliner smudged with espresso by MAC and black mascara. To finish off, a swipe of Mocha lipstick and Voila!!! I love the classic casual look, because you can really make it your own depending on your personal style - romantic, city chic, dramatic, natural, creative, classic etc - the possbilities are endless!!! For someone a casual look can be lipgloss and mascara, for someone else, its a red lip stain and bronzer - the key is to personalize the look for you!!!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Smolder Eyeliner MAC

I have a fascination with eyeliners for two reasons - 1) They define the eye like no other makeup tool and 2) They can be smudged and literally transformed in another colour or effect simply by mixing in an eyeshadow colour. The more I've been reading about eyeliner shades (in particular in reference to the various seasonal types), the more I'm learning about how smudging in your favourite eyeshadow colour into your liner can literally change your 'makeup' life!!! For the dark/deep autumn, like myself, sometimes you get bored with the basic dark brown/black liner, so I've been mixing in various warm grey shadows and golden olive shades to smudge into my black liner and I'm in love with the effect - Since Smolder by MAC is one of my favourites, I decided to play around with the olive tones in the Yves Saint Laurent eyeshadow quad #10 - for this look I used the medium golden olive shade - I played up the new red/copper tones in my hair by using Coppertone blush my MAC and went with my new absolutely most favourite neurtral lip = Touch by MAC! Playing around with shadows and liner is such an amazing way of figuring out if a shade really works or if you're in the right season - you'll soon be able to pick up on when your eye pops and when it seems dull! My next experiment will be to try a bronze/gold with smolder and a red lip :)

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Redhead and HAPPY!!!

Now I've rediscovered my longing to re-birth this blog - I've decided that its time for a transformation as well. Interestingly enough, my hair stylist intuitively felt that as well. I went yesterday for my regular trim/colour refresh, when she looked at me and said - you look 'blah', lets go RED! My heart actually skipped a beat and I realized, yeppers - this is it! This is the beginning of a new chapter that I'm meant to write. Part of it has to do with discovering the Deep Autumn palette once again, but I think its more than that - I think there is a deeper transformation taking place. Lately I've shifted - let go of some relationships that were'nt authentic and embracing new frienships that are! And although I feel a little 'misplaced', I also feel like I'm walking along the RIGHT PATH.
I've recently watched Elizabeth Gilbert on Oprah's Super Soul SUnday and the greatest message I got was to guestion - am I living my true path? Have I embraced my own Hero's journey??? I don't have the answer yet, because I'm still asking myself the questions!!! WHat I do know is that I've missed blogging, I've missed 'colour', painting, doing makeup, helping others feel awesome about themselves. I also feel awesome about 'myself' for the first time, in a new confident way, like wherever my journey is taking me, its all GOOD!! Its kind of like a new celebration of self and my new 'redhead' persona, fits this Perfectly:
FOr this Deep Autumn look - I used Dior's eyeshadow palette in Amber Design, MAC smolder eyeliner smudged with a bronze-brown shadow from the Dior palette. I used Gingerly blush my MAC, as well as Brick Lipliner and Touch Lipstick, also by MAC. I love these shades and I love embracing my new red-toned hair. I may not have reached my life-destination, but I'm HAPPY with where I am, and that's pretty awesome!!!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

TOUCH Lipstick - MAC

Feels pretty awesome to be makeup blogging again....... and the best part is, creating new looks. This time around I have discovered a new appreciation for the Deep Autumn palette. I've played around with it before, but part of me didn't quite understand the palette. Since I've discovered shades like TOuch, Brick-o-la and Taupe my MAC, my desire to try Deep Autumm as a season again has come through full force. What better way to play around with autumn, then in the autumn months. Here is a look I created around Touch lipstick by MAC - I used bronze, brown-black shades on my eyes (THe Dior palette in Amber Desig, MAC smolder liner smudged with the deepest shade in the Dior palette), A terracotta toned blush - Gingerly by MAC and a of cource Touch, to me its like a pecan lip shade:
It feels good to be back!!!! THank you all who follow my blog - its because of you that I've returned and now have even more to give!!!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

I'm Here, I'm Here

Hello Everyone, I know that its been AGES since I've blogged and for all those who follow me, please don't lose heart - I'll be back VERY soon with a lot of awesome new posts. SO what's been doing on with me? A lot - Life - refocusing - I've been taking some creative writing classes, trying out new recipes, reading, painting - basically, just taking some time out for me. I got out of my health kick, rediscovered a love for wine and now I'm somewhere in between. I've gained a few pounds and I guess part of me is a little self conscious about that, but I'm also re-learning a lot about health, nutrition, exercise etc. To be honest, its been a roll-o-coaster of a ride lately lol. I can say for certain that I don't regret any step I've taken in my journey - I've discovered a passion for spending time in nature, being new water, surfing (which is really weird because I don't live near the ocean or surf at all, but I'm obsessed with all things surfing right now), and even getting involved with eco-friendly and environmental issues. So, as you can see, I've been a very busy girl!!! However, in that time, I have never forgotten about makeup, playing around with various colours and experimenting with colour palettes. So where am I these days??? After an interesting stint with 'Soft Summer Deep' or 'Shaded Summer', I've been more and more drawn to explore Deep Autumn and I LOVE this palette so much, that I'm almost ready to claim it as my own!!! I'll have to work on putting some looks together and start posting, blogging again!!! Thanks for being patient with me as my life evolves and as a new adventure begins!!!!

Monday, July 28, 2014

NARS Dragon Girl

DRAGON GIRL!!! I'm in love with NARS shade! I was going through my makeup case and realized that most of the reds that I own are either true reds or deep reds - I was desperate for something a little bit different. In fact, I wanted a red that wasn't 'in your face', a little brighter with a pop of colour, but that words for everyday! I walked into Sephora and knew that if I was going to explore a new red, NARS was exactly the counter I wanted to go to - NARS makes the most incredible, wearable red shades ever. I'm still loyal to my MAC Ruby Woo, but when you want to venture into elegant wine tone reds, orange reds and vintage reds, NARS is my absolute fave - plus, I love their lipstick packaging -its so Chic!!! However, this time, I didn't go for a lipstick per say, I tried one of the chubby lipliner sticks - so easy and fun to apply. I ended up having a conversation with one of the makeup artists at Sephora and he suggested I try 'Dragon Girl' - saying its one of NARS best-selling shades. I tried it and I fell in 'LOVE'! Its a little bit red, a littel bit 'berry' and has a touch of pink. WHat makes it even more awesome is that you can wear it on its own, as a lipstick or use it as a liner with other shades. For this look I swiped it on with my current favourite Dior eyeshadow quad - Amber Design #708 - I then used blooz eyeliner by MAC and smudged the medium brown from the Dior quad onto the upper lash-line - I finished the look with my current YSL black mascara!!! If you want to feel feirce, free, playful - Dragon Girl is for you!!!

MAC Del Rio Lipstick

WHen it comes to the summer, most people tend to do a makeup look that's lighter, brighter, fresher - this look just seems to compliment the weather so perfectly. I decided to do something a little bit different! This summer, I've been experimenting with deep plums and reds. Here's how it all started - I walked into MAC a few weeks ago and I was on a mission to find that perfect summer lipstick - fresh, a little more on the pink or coral side, but something just didn't 'feel right' - these shades were pretty, but something was 'missing' - the makeup artist then had a 'a-ha' moment and said "Try This" - she handed me 'Del Rio'. I looked at the lipstick and said 'no way' - 'that's way too plum and way too dark for summer and for me' - then I heard the words "Trust me" and so I did - I swiped on the lipstick, thinking this isn't going to 'work' and then I stood back and had my own 'a-ha' moment - the colour was 'perfect' - for me, for summer, for any occasion that I want to look elegant without going for a bold, bright lip. The LESSON - don't dismiss a colour just because it doesn't fit into the 'rules' or 'seasonal stereotype' - why do browns and plums 'have' to be worn in the fall? or red reserved for evening? Sometimes we look at magazines and fall into the trap of wanting to look like one of the models - maybe you're in awe of the model wearing a light pink gloss, but perhaps on you, that vampy burgundy is YOUR own personal ticket to seducation! Makeup is all about embracing your own personal elegance, not what the fashion magazines tell you, but what looks 'amazing' on YOU!!! Here are two looks that I created with my new Del Rio purchase. One is using more natural shades on the eyes (browns and golds), while the other is playful and more colourful - with blues and silver shades on the eyes:

For this first look I used an eyeshadow quad by Dior #708 - Amber Design - its been my summer staple! I love being able to mix the lighter golds with the more shimmery browns and then blending in the shadows and layering onto my eyeliner - in this photo I blended the medium brown shade into MAC Smolder eyeliner and finished with black mascara. I did a light sweep of MAC 'Love thing' mineralize blush and finished with Del Rio on the lips!
I had so much fun with this look - I took the photo with a green sweater, but ended up wearing a 3/4 sleeve black top and I felt so 'awesome' - I started with NARS Lhasa shadow on the lid into the crease, then layered MAC Electra on lid, Blooz eyeliner smudged with contrast shadow (also MAC), Black mascara (I used a new YSL sample that I got from Sephora), MAC dessert rose blush and Del rio lipstick!!! This summer - break the rules a little bit - try a few looks that aren't 'typical' - you'll be so surprized at how well a deeper lipstick shade can compliment your summer look and you'll be 'stand out awesome' at your next party!!! Trust me :)

Thursday, July 10, 2014

What I Know for Sure.......... 8 KEYS to finding your most beautiful self!!!

I haven't posted in a while, but think this is perfect time for a 'non-image' post. I've been watching a lot of Oprah's Super Soul Sunday shows and one of the questions that she often asks people is: "What do you know for sure?". I've spent the past few months in a state of being 'absent' - not just from my blog, but from many things. At first I thought there was something wrong with me for feeling like 'disconnecting', but I've come to realize that my 'hibernation' process was MUCH needed and has contributed to be taking a fresh look on my beauty journey. I've had the blessing of facing many feelings, some a little scary, some a little funny and some a little healing. Here's what I know FOR SURE: 1) BEAUTY is an inside job. No one can define your beauty because its 'yours' - its meant to be yours and you're meant to embrace all that is beauty about you. Beauty is also an inside job because its your spirit, within you that makes your truly beautiful - no makeup in the world can cover up a hurting heart. Sometimes in order to really see your beauty you need to take OFF all that exterior makeup and look within yourself. Once you see who you 'really' are within, you will be in AWE of your own beauty!!! 3)BE AUTHENTIC - you are 'you' - you are meant to live 'your' life and have 'your' body, your face, your features. Its time to stop comparing ourselves to other women and people around us. Its time to stop giving ourselves messages like: I wish I was ......... (fill in the blank). Don't wish that you could be anything other than the BEST version of yourself!!! Authenticity is about being REAL - so be REAL. If you're a brunette, rock your brunette-ness! If you have grey eyes, play them up. If you've got curvy hips, flaunt your curviness. Whatever it is that you've got - embrace it, work with it, admire it and LOVE it!!! 4) FIND YOUR BEST COLOURS - When you wear your best colours, you light up! You best colours could be related to your colour analysis, but colour goes 'beyond' that - colour is energy and sometimes your BEST colours are wearing shades that make you feel happy, joyous, alive, energetic!!! Find out what those colours are for you and them combine them with shades that compliment your skin tone. Lately, I've been really feeling good around greens and blues, so I've wearing those shades because they really speak to me. Green literally makes me want to cheer and start laughing - which is awesome - I love how amazing colour is and how colour can make us feel. When I want to be more grounded, browns and greys are my best 'neutral' friends. I feel content and more down to earth when I surround myself with a medium charcoal grey. Red is my power colour, as well as black and gold. Get to know how colours make you feel, then wear your 'best' colours!!! 5) ELIMINATE ALL THE TOXINS THAT SURROUND YOU - I'm not just talking about chemicals - I'm talking about people, places and things that literally 'make you sick' and drain the life force out of you!!! If it makes you miserable, get rid of it. If you're unable to chance the situation that you find yourself in, get rid of the way you think and respond to that 'toxin'. So many of us are sponges for negative energy, especially those of us who are really sensitive to the world around us! We need to begin protecting ourselves from things that zap our energy! A great way to start doing this is to start removing the toxins you have the most control over - for me, its usually toxins in food. As soon as I start removing toxic foods (for me its usually wheat/gluten and too much caffeine), I instantly feel better once I 'detox' from these foods. FEELING GOOD puts me in a whole new 'energy field' and I begin to recognize other areas in my life that I need to 'detox'. Very often we don't realize what it is around us that drains us, but once we remove it for a while, we can see the source - listen to your 'gut' and remove anything that doesn't bring you complete joy and happiness! 6) SURROUND YOURSELF WITH THINGS YOU REALLY LOVE - #5 and 6 really go together. Surround yourself with people, places, things that bring out the very BEST in you - that make you smile. Be around people who 'lift you up' vs drain you, that 'support your authentic power' vs compete with you. Make sure your environment gives you a sense of peace and joy - your house doesn't have to have the most expensive furniture, but the things you surround yourself should bring a smile to your face. Spend time out in nature, nurture your soul, get a massage once in a while - be your own best friend if you have to. Its KEY to remember that you won't be able to surround yourself with the things you really love if YOU yourself aren't one of those things. You need to be the first person who cheers you on - you need to really LOVE 'you' - not in an egotistical 'selfish' way, but simply loving your creation, loving your soul and spirit - once you learn this key, everything around you will change and you will be surrounded by LOVE! 7) STYLE CANNOT BE BOUGHT - it does't matter how much money you have, style is something within you - its something you're just born with 'knowing'. You can be the richest person in the world, but have zero style or you can be just getting by and look like a million bucks. You also can't buy class! Being a woman of style and class is attainable by all women regardless of your walk in life. Its not limited to celebrities and the rich and famous - in fact, I see many celebrities that act like they have 'zero' class! Classy for me is an allure that a woman has, it's a woman who has MANNERS, speaks eloquently, is authentic, truthful, humble, caring. Style is just knowing what works - but its also knowing 'yourself' - its about recognizing that a trend won't last for ever and its about putting your best self forward!!! 8) Last but not least - LOVE THE JOURNEY - you will constantly be learning about yourself and evolving. Be compassionate with yourself, embrace your BEST self at this very moment - live in the present - SMILE and be KIND!!! I hope that you enjoyed this post - I felt that before I returned to my usual posts, it would be nice to share some things that I've learned along the way to understanding beauty and life!!!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Celebrate Your Life!!!.......with a little Ruby Woo

Today I am celebrating!!! Today is my Birthday!!! I'm a March baby, a true Pisces! I'm excited to celebrate my life this year because I really feel like I've hit huge 'a-ha' moment in my life. I'm proud of myself - I'm proud of who I am, what kind of person I am - I'm happy to be me!!! I'm also truly 'Blessed'! I'm blessed to have such an amazing family - to have great, caring friends. God has blessed me in many ways and although the past year had its ups and downs, every 'trial' that has come my way, has made me stronger, has made me even more grateful to be alive, has restored by faith that everything happens for a reason and for a 'season'. I celebrate the Renata that I am today - a woman who knows her worth - who has really discovered the beauty of true friendship, the importance of family and the life-changing impact of Red-Lipstick!!! Cheers to the woman who I have 'become'!!! One thing that I have really learned is that true class is not only about what you 'look' like - its the energy that you exude and how you carry yourself and present yourself to others. TRUE Class is really about being a good-hearted person!!! I want to thank my Grandmother and my mother for teaching me that lesson!!!
I decided for my birthday today to create a makeup look that I discovered while at the House of Chanel in Paris. I remeber having the most delightful experience there and meeting a makeup artist who really look the time to teach me a very elegant and classy makeup look. It all begins with a clean face, some concealer and a light tinted moisturizer, a natural toned blush and an subtle smokey/defined eye - I'm using Prelude eyeshadow quad with a Navy Liner (blooz by MAC), smudged with the darkest shade of the Prelude palette. Since I went with a defined eye, I still wanted that 'red' lip look but subtle, so I lined my lips with MAC's Spice before filling in the lip with Ruby Woo - Chanel's Gabrielle and YSL #1 Le Rouge are also amazing Red's that I discovered in Paris!!! So today I've beginning the day with a croissant, a nice strong coffee and will end the day with a peice of cake, a glass of wine and a HUGE self-hug!!! I embrace and Love the person that I am!!! :)

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Yves Rocher - Bois De Rose

More and more I see the value of a great lipliner. In fact, sometimes a lipliner layered over a lipbalm is all you need! In my personal research on lipliners, artists use this took in various ways. Some apply the liner before the lipstick, some after, some use it as a blending tool and others use it on its own! One thing I've come to learn, is not to listen to advice from artists and use that advice as a 'cardinal rule' - instead, listen to what an artist has to teach you, learn from their advice, and then make it work for you! Remember, when you applying makeup, its your face, it your canvas, you know it better than anyone and you know what you like!!! Taking a break from this blog really brought me back to using makeup in a way that I feel the most comfortable! There are guides, there is good advice, there are makeup professionals and colour analysts, but at the end of the day, you need to be your own person and your own authority! Now that I've got that off my chest, I'm ready to talk about one of my favourite lipliners that I discovered in Paris and luckily the company Yves Rocher is also sold here in North America. Bois De Rose is a shade that is more along the lines of a brownish or even slightly coral toned Rose, in other words, in a warmer rose shade and 'perfect' for blending in a variety of different shades. In my last post, I talked about trying to create a multi-dimentinal colour and look - you will bring your makeup to a whole new level when you learn to mix and match and create custom colours that work for you - in essence, its like a really expensive hair-cut and you will leave people wondering, what colour is that? what is she wearing? Its all about the 'Allure' - that's what the Parisians are known for. Beauty is not about being 'Beautiful' because beauty is in the eye of the beholder, Beauty is about 'owning' your own beauty authority and making it uniquely 'yours' - its about looking in the mirror, liking what you see and 'owning' that energy everywhere you go!!! With the 'Bois De Rose' liner, you have room to create a lot of different looks - I paired it with my go-to 'Retro' lipstick by MAC, but it works really well with a lot of CHanel lipsticks too, in particular Venise, Rivoli and practically any shade with a hint of rose. This liner creates a very 'Romantic' look - its ideal for a casual-elegant look (stay tuned for a great up-coming post about casual-elegance)!!! In essence, lipliners are you friends and they can 'transform' any lipstick that you would otherwise by-pass or throw out into the most beautiful shade. Take inventory of all the colours you have and then ask - what's missing? how can I transform all these shades? Perhaps you want to make them more neutral looking or brighter or even 'warmer' or 'cooler' - whatever you need to do to create that perfect look for you, do it and remember, you are the artist painting your own canvas - enjoy the experience!!!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

What I've come to Learn about Makeup!!!

So I've decided that not only am I going to post photos of my makeup work or describe my 'look' - I'm also going to blog about my ideas around beauty and how to use makeup to 'compliment' you look, style and life!!! I'd really like to share something that I think will benefit you the next time you go shopping for makeup. Makeup is a lot of hair colour - one single shade is nice, but to look REALLY elegant, makeup, like an expensive hair-colour, needs to be 'Multi-Dimentional'. Other than a Classic Red lip, elegant makeup shouldn't be one straight shade - it should have a touch of this or a bit of that - thats why layering different shades gives you that 'ideal' shade. But if you want that one standard colour, esp when it comes to lipstick, try a shade like Retro from MAC (it has a touch of red, a touch of peach, a touch of brown and a touch of rose) - another trick for lipstick is to use different lipliner shades with a neutral lipstick or go for unconventional colour combinations to create a unique shade like a plum liner with a peach lipstick or a mahogany liner with a light sheer pink lip-gloss - the possibilities are 'endless' - if you can't find that 'perfect' shade, create your own!!! THe perfect lipstick shouldn't be 'definable' - the best is to get the reaction from people who question 'What colour is that???' - With eyeshadows, the possbilities are endless too - I mix shades ALL the time - very rarely, do I every just use one shade - I layer, I mix, I create various different shades. I do the same with eyeliners - I will use an angled brush to smudge various colours into my liner. I will use a taupe-brown shadow to blend into a black liner or a copper brown to blend into a deep brown shade. I've even mixed plum shades in with navy and blue liners. If you want a unique makeup look, think like an artist - layer, mix and match, blend!!! When it comes to blush, the best thing you can do is to match the natural flush in your cheeks - pinch your cheeks, pinch the end of your finger tip and notice what shade appears - that's your best blush shade - it will look the most natural. I've learned the hard way that blush in the wrong colour or blush that isn't sheer enough will make you look like a clown! Save a bold colour for your lip and go natural with your blush! Finally, foundation and concealer - take the time to get colour matched! Sephora now offers a colourmatching system - or go makeup shopping without wearing your foundation and let an artist match you up. If you're still not sure, go for a tinted moisturizer that is sheer! Also, if you need, mix and match - or even create your own tinted moisturizer by blending your everyday moisturizer with your foundation. Think of your makeup kit as 'collecting a wardrobe' - every once in a while, purge what doesn't work, keep the 'essentials' and never give up on a colour you really love, no matter what a colour analyst says. If you LOVE red lips, go for it, just learn how to make it work - maybe its a matter of adjusting what you wear on your eyes or blending a more neutral liner with the lipstick - Makeup, more than anything, is a journey and you learn along the way!!! Enjoy the journey!!!

Retro Lipstick by MAC and a Dose of Motherly Love!!!

I have a very funny story and relationship with the lipstick 'Retro' by MAC! I have tried Retro before, always thought it was 'just ok' - I think I've even blogged about it before, but its only been recently that I've really embraced this shade for what it really is - an elegant shade that covers ALL the bases - its got a touch of red, a touch of peach, a touch of brown, a touch of rose, a touch of CLASS!!! Retro's got it all!!! For years, my mother has been wearing Retro - its one of her 'go-to' shades. Everytime I see my mom, she 'always' looks put together - more and more, I see my mom and I absolutely ADMIRE her - her style, the way she's always classy and elegant looking, how strong she is as a woman, how giving and beautiful she is as a soul - I love my Mom! I've realized that my mom really is my best friend - when no one else is there and I need a shoulder to cry on, she's 'always' there and that is very comforting and beautiful!!! So really, this look is inspired by my Mom - a very classy and elegant woman! Next, to my mom, the star of the show is 'Retro' - a must have lipstick shade for anyone looking for a put together, go with everything, casual-elegant look: I started this look with a good, hydrating moisturizer, a light tinted moisturizer, concealer, Chanel's 'Prelude' eyeshadow palette (the medium shade applied from lid to crease and the darkest shade smudged into the upper lashline), a dark brown liner by Marcelle, black mascara (Loreal voluminous continues to be a go-to), my favourite 'Madly' blush by NARS and RETRO!!! Voila - a go to look that will always 'be there for you', just like Mom!!! :)

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

I'm BACK!!!

I have MISSED blogging on 'Beauty and Elengance' SO much!!! And I'm here to say that I'm BACK and this time with a Vengeance!!! My life lately has taken my on a WILD, but much needed adventure! I went on a little 'spiritual retreat/journey' you could say where I really started to ask myself what I wanted from my life? What is my true passion? Where do I get my greatest sense of fulfillment??? and its interesting, my journey led me right back here!!! My passion is makeup and colour!!! My fulfillment comes from expressing myself using this creative outlet and sharing it with others!!! I'm so happy to begin the next chapter of my journey right here with all of you at the 'Beauty and Elegance'!!! I haven't stopped my makeup experiments, in FACT, I've been working very hard on creating new looks. I have done a lot of reminiscing about Paris, what I learned about creating a look based on true allure. Defining your perfect look includes really looking at the following facts and questions: 1) Who are you as a woman? what does your Life look like? 2) What is your unique colouring (study what colours look the best on you and that you feel the best in) 3) What is your 'Allure' - what makes you shine? What makes you feel 'sexy'? 4) What do you want in life? What are your passions? what brings you fulfillment??? 5) Perhaps 'most' importantly - everything that you are seeing, you ALREADY have - its time to stop trying to 'look like someone else' and embrace what is UNIQUE and original about you!!! Colour analysis works 'most of the time', but not all of the time. I for one, don't feel like I fit into any one season - I feel that I can borrow from 'many' seasons, both warm and cool, but feel the most closely connected to the autumn and winter seasons. I feel that getting your colours done is a great experience, but it should not 'define' your life!!! Examine who you are - DEFINE YOURSELF!!! We are not meant to fit into a 'box' when it comes to beauty and makeup. Elegant women are elegant because they don't fit the mold, they follow their instrict. The French 'allure'or je ne sais quoi - is 'not definable' for a reason! Once you step into 'trying to hard' or defining your look, you step 'away' from your own 'Allure' - Be who you are, be confident, don't look outside of who you are for something/someone to give you meaning and KNOW your WORTH!!! The photo I posted is a look I've been wearing a lot lately - its my own version of an everyday Parisian Look - I'm sticking to the warm tones of my eyes with Dior 'Amber Design', a dark brown liner smudged with the med. brown shade in the Dior palette and black mascara. My all time favourite 'Madly' blush by NARS and a swipe of Makeup Up Forever, Natural lipstick in N9!!! They key for this look is that its natural, yet gives you the right amount of colour!!! Oh wow - I'm SO excited to be back and blogging about makeup again!!! Love you All!!!