This $5 single shadow from NYX in es29 Deep Charcoal happens to be one of my favorite gunmetal shades I’ve ever used. The depth is just right – not too dark so you can smoke it out with black liner and still have that contrast that’s so important to the look. It’s also balanced with enough shimmer to make it wearable and easy to blend, but not overly shimmery. It creates the perfect smoky eye on all skin tones by adding just the right amount of drama.
If you see me out somewhere I’m probably wearing no less than 7 coats of mascara. You’d never know it because my lashes are never thick or clumpy, just long and defined and I know it’s due to the formula I’ve been buying pretty consistently now for years: LashBlast Fusion. I don’t really know the difference between this one versus the orange tube, but I didn’t like the orange and the yellow tube was great for a while but I couldn’t get it to build like I can using this formula.
My process goes like this; primer (PureLash, I’ve used it for 4+ years now), then curl (with the Shu curler of course), then the first coat of mascara using the ‘press and wiggle’ technique taking the brush from the very base of my lashes all the way up to the tip. This will lay down more than that ‘flicking’ technique where the wand barely grazes the lash tips and doesn’t pump up the roots where you want the most volume. Now let it dry. Applying more to wet lashes creates clumps so be patient – it’s only a few minutes. All dry? Curl again (hugely important – you’ll get way more of a a wide-eye effect with 2 curls instead of one), then another coat. Your subsequent layers will be applied from the mid part of the last upward and always wait until the last coat has dried. Keep laying it on until you’re happy.
With some mascaras this might be a recipe for disaster, but there’s something about this formula, brush, and technique that makes lash building so easy.
When it comes to coordinating makeup for your Halloween costume this year, you have 3 choices; skip the dolling up of your face altogether (lame), break your ass looking through dozens of YouTube vids where 15 year olds paint elaborate designs on their faces – something you could never do yourself, or just get some stencils and call it a day.
Hint: choose option c.
Ultraflesh Flash Face Decorating Kit is meant exactly for this sort of thing – Halloween face and body makeup. The kit comes with 9 (reusable) stencils, metallic makeup sprays in gold, black, and pink, and 3 pens for detail work that also can double as eye liners post-festivities.
Beyond the fact that a stencil is a great, foolproof way to get some detailed design, I love the bold hued spray-on makeup which will show up bigger and last longer than a powder or cream.
If you love wearing mineral eye shadow but hate the creasing and limited wear time, I have a perfect solution. I’ve slowly been replacing makeup mainstays in my kit with their natural or mineral counterparts when I find something that performs as well or better. My requirements? It has to show up well on the skin, blend easily, and wear 12+ hours to make the cut. Unfortunately, even though I wear them quite often, mineral shadows haven’t given me the confidence to be kit worthy until I recently found the perfect solution. It’s all about the Temptu Mixing Medium baby.
Temptu is really known as a professional airbrush line but maybe you’ve tried their wildly popular at-home airbrushing system at Sephora? The heart of their business is still geared toward professionals who use airbrush for their business which is where Mixing Medium is sold although you don’t have to be a professional to buy it (yay!)
Mixing Medium is a silicone-based multi-use lotion that can be used for a ton of different stuff that I’ll get to in a second, but in this case I’m using it to bring intensity and a much longer wear time to a mineral shadow.
Here’s how I use it.
I’m starting with my sample size of Alima Pure Catwalk Eyeliner, one of my favorite mineral makeup lines.
Now here’s where the magic happens; see that tinsy little whitish dab on the lid? That’s the Mixing Medium and how little I use. Gather a little powder on your brush to scoop a little into the lid to blend it with the liquid making a thick paste.
Now the swatches side by side, on the right is with the Mixing Medium. You can see more of an intensity (especially in person where you can pick up the detail better than my lens did) but beyond that is how this newly formed cream gives such better wear. Like hours longer. Many hours. This turns any ho-hum mineral shadow into a more intense, long-wearing shadow fit for any Makeup Artist’s kit.
It also shines when you use it with mineral powder concealers turning it into a creamy one that wears well and doesn’t look cakey or powdery. It also gives glittery pigments something to stick to if you pat it on the lid before applying so they stay on without flaking away. If your foundation is a bit too heavy, mix a few drops in to thin it out and keep the color and performance just the same. Basically, it can turn any makeup powder into a longer wearing, more intense cream or thin out a cream so it isn’t so heavy on the skin. It does it all.
I love Mixing Medium, I’ve had it in my kit for years. I did have to get used to thinking to grab for it, but now I use it all the time because it’s so cool. There are some things in my kit that are best suited for pro use, but Mixing Medium just isn’t one of them. Check it out- I think you’ll really love it too.
Temptu Mixing Medium
We’ve all bought foundation that doesn’t match. When it’s too light, take it back- it’s hard to get it to look good (unless you use FACE atelier Zero Plus with it, but that’s another story…) When it’s too dark, you have more options. You can mix it with your daily moisturizer which dilutes the color and makes a custom blended tinted moisturizer. Or you can do what I do every day and use the darker foundation on your neck since our necks are typically a shade or two lighter than our faces even before we add blush and bronzer making the discrepancy more obvious. Just a few drops of a deeper foundation shade brings my neck to a believeable shade that matches my face so the look is seamless and balanced.