Monday, October 17, 2011

Halloween Half Moon Manicure

I am obsessed with half moon manicures. I love the vintage 1930s/1940s look and since I'm a huge fan of Dita von Teese, who is always seen rocking a classic red and white half moon manicure, I love to do this design even more. I decided to be festive and do my favorite manicure with classic Halloween colors. 

I start off using a base coat from China Glaze to stop any staining to my nails from the colored polish.

Next, to get the orange moon, apply a thick layer of orange nail polish, it doesn't have to cover the whole nail to the very tip since that part of the nail will be covered with a black color later. I used Confetti Nail Color in Conga Line. You want the area where the moon will be to be super opaque. With the polish I used, I had to do two coats to get it opaque.

For the next step where a hole reinforcement is applied as a stencil to cover the top of the nail that will be the moon, you want to be sure that your previous color of orange polish is completely dry or the reinforcer template will make a mess of the polish and peel it off. I use the clear reinforcers because they are thinner than the paper ones. The clear reinforcements create a crisp barrier and can get in the very corners of the nail creating a very clean look.

Place a reinforcer on your nail at the very top of your nail. You want the reinforcer to cover about 1/4 of your nail at the top. Press it onto your nail, making sure the corners where your nails meets the skin is covered to get a very clean finish.
I do one nail at a time and add the reinforcement to each nail as I go.

Paint your nail with a black polish, I used Hello Kitty Liquid Nail Art polish in Night Sparkle. It's an opaque black polish with gold and green shimmer. I like the depth and sparkle it gives, especially in natural light. I apply one thick, opaque coat because I peel the stencil off of my nail right after I paint the last color. I find it creates a super clean line and it is easier to clean up or touch up any fresh polish if needed.

After I peel off the reinforcer, I usually take a cheap but fairly precise synthetic paint brush and clean up or touch up anything that looks messy, including areas where the stencil may have missed or areas of the moon that don't look as complete as I want it to be.

Finish with a clear top coat, I used China Glaze Fast Forward Top Coat, and you are done.

You can use any color combination with the half moon design. I personally love a natural moon with a beautiful burgundy polish but my favorite is a shimmery silver moon and glossy black polish. ^_^

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Recent Favorites

These are some of my recent favorite product. They're not new products but they are new to me, well, sort of...

Harajuku Lovers "G"
I'm addicted to this scent right now. This is one of Gwen Stefani's first perfumes. It was released as part of the permanent line for her Harajuku Lovers brand. It has since been discontinued, which makes me extremely sad, especially since I have recently re-discovered it. I've had this perfume since her HL line was released. -I'm kind of a really huge, extremely massive fan of Gwens- I never used it too much; I've always preferred the scent "Love" from the same line. I'm glad I decided to start using this scent. This perfume is so coconuty and delicious smelling. It's really sweet but has a warmth to the sweet smell. I've been using it everyday, which concerns me since I can no longer get it easily. But that's okay, I might as well enjoy it.

Make Up For Ever Smoky Lash Mascara
This mascara is amazing. I have never been one to buy high end mascaras. I feel it's a waste of money to spend so much on a product that I will toss in 3 or 4 months. However, I got to try a sample size of this in a free MUFE promotion at Sephora  -spend $35 get this free sort of deal-
I was really impressed. It's super pigmented and really rich. It gives volume and holds my curl, which is so important to me since I have super straight eyelashes. It's the first time I've ever spent $22 bucks on a single mascara, but I love this one so much that I will probably do it again.

Physicians Formula Eye Booster eyeliner

This is a brush tip liquid eyeliner pen! From the drugstore! I was really excited when I found this product. I love brush tip liquid eyeliner; they're so precise, and you can get such a fine and/or flicked out line, so this was a great find for me. The product claims to be an eyelash growth booster but honestly, I have no idea if it works. I haven't noticed if my lashes are longer and I don't care because that is not why I bought this product. The finish of the liner is quite shiny and very black. It also has really great staying power and doesn't fade.

MAC Typographic
I only recently started using this eyeshadow to fill in my brows. I have very dark black hair and I find that I can use this shade heavily to create a really dramatic look or very lightly to create a more natural brow. I love the ashy color of this shadow and it matches super dark hair nicely. I use Typographic for the majority of the brow color and throw Omega into the mix in areas I want my brows to be a bit lighter or have a faded, more natural look. 

MAC Espresso 
Espresso is a warn brown that I use as a contour shade on my brow bone just under the front, inner part of my eyebrow. It gives my eyes a bit more depth, shape, and really warms them up. It's very subtle but on days I forget to do it, I can tell the difference it makes to my bone structure.

Bragg's organic extra virgin olive oil
Since I can remember, I have used natural oil to help improve my skin and fade acne scarring. I used to use vitamin E oil but I can no longer find it for a reasonable price. I also started seeing irritation and redness from using it on my extremely sensitive skin because it's mixed with other oils like sunflower and coconut oil? Gross. So, I purchased this 16 fl oz organic extra virgin olive oil for $8 at a local food market as opposed to $12 for 2 fl oz bottle of vitamin E oil that can be mixed with up to 5 different kinds of oils, that could and I'm sure would, irritate my overly sensitive and high maintenance skin. The extra virgin olive oil is smooth, velvety, and it does not burn or irritate my skin in any way. I filled up the travel bottle with the oil to keep in my bathroom for ease of use at night when I'm getting ready for bed. It makes my skin feel amazing. I'm glad   vitamin E oil started irritating my skin because I wouldn't have found something 100x better! Haha.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Red, Bold and Gold

These colors looks great for fall. Rich, warm and bright. 

What I used:
  • Urban Decay primer in Eden all over the lid.
  • NYX Jumbo Pencil in Milk as a base all over lid to cover any unevenness and brighten the colors that will be used.
  • Make Up For Ever Star Powder in Iridescent Red 949 applied to the inner portion of the lid and outer portion of eyelid, leaving the middle bare. (I also used this color on the outer 2/3 of lower lash line leaving the inner corner bare as well.)
  • NYX Jumbo pencil in True Gold used as base for middle part of lid.
  • bareMinerals True Gold color applied over gold NYX base on middle of lid. I also foiled it with MAC’s Fix +. (I applied the gold NYX jumbo pencil base on the inner 1/3 of the lower lash line and applied the bareMinerals shadow over it and foiled it as well.)
  • Kat Von D color Peanut (from the True Love palette or the Tattoo Chronicles Vol. 1 Palette) used as a highlight or blending color to stop the red from going to high up on the brow bone. This color is quite light and shimmery, if you want to tone the look and the shimmer down use a matte eyeshadow slightly lighter than your skin tone.
  • KvD color Tijuana (from the Memento Mori palette) used in the outer v and lower lash line used to darken and smoke out the outer v. A matte dark brown would work well too, like MAC's Brown Down.
  • Blend! Make sure all the colors blend together seamlessly.
  • bareMinerals Queen Phyllis applied in the inner corner of the eye.
  • Revlon Colorstay liquid eyeliner in black to create a dramatic winged eyeliner.
  • MAC Blacktrack Fluidline wiggled between the upper lashes and applied to the upper waterline.
  • Finish the look by applying mascara, I used Maybelline Colossal mascara in Glam Black. (for volume at base of lashes) Revlon Fabulash in black.