Archive | June, 2010

Confession: I’m a Never Nude about nail polish

21 Jun

So this post isn’t about one of my beauty finds, but I just thought I’d share this beauty revelation I had this morning. I am a Never Nude about nail polish.

If you’re an “Arrested Development” fan, you might get this. But if you’re not, you should be. A character on the show Tobias was a Never Nude, which means that the closest he would get to being nude is wearing a pair of cut-off jean shorts (jorts).

Well, I realized this morning that I’m the same way with finger nail polish. Maybe it was the five years I was a cheerleader that I wasn’t allowed to have painted fingernails for most of the year, or maybe it’s the way a fun color of nail polish can accessorize an outfit. Regardless of the reason, I’d rather not be seen in public without some sort of polish on my nails

This morning when I was getting ready to leave for work I noticed that the navy-colored polish I had painted on my finger nails was chipping horribly. So I decided to take it off. But then I saw that my nails were still navy-tinted and had a mini-beauty breakdown.

I grabbed the nearest nude-colored polish (Ulta salon formula nail laquer in Tutu – which is now discontinued) and painted them in a hurry, almost making me late for work. Below is the result.

My pre-work Ulta Tutu paint job

Granted, this isn’t by far my best work and you can still see some remnants of my navy polish. But I think it would have killed me to see my bluish nails while I sat at a computer typing all day.

Am I the only Never Nude about nail polish out there? Or are you a Never Nude about some other beauty product?

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The Scrublet™: the next best thing to a Clarisonic brush?

17 Jun

First off, if you’ve never heard of the Clarisonic, this is probably the only beauty blog you’re ever read. Please, go educate yourself! I’d even say it’s the holy grail of beauty tools.

It was on my wish list for Christmas ’09 and college graduation, but was pushed aside for some Burberry rain boots and a MacBook Pro. So when I heard about the L’Oréal Paris Go 360 Clean cleanser and Scrublet™ ($5.87) that are supposed to produce similar results, I decided to give them a go.

A close-up of the rubber Scrublet™ that pops out of the cleanser bottle

I’ve never actually used the Clarisonic ($195) so I can’t compare it to that. However, I’ve used almost all of the cleanser and I do like it. My pores don’t seem to be less clogged, but it makes my skin feel smoother and removes makeup without dirtying up my washcloths!

I may be in love and will probably start using this regularly.

Have you tried the Clarisonic or found any products that yield similar results? Would you try out the Scrublet™?

5 Makeup bag essentials for under $10

16 Jun

No matter your budget, there are certain items necessary for an everyday beauty routine. Here are my top five non-makeup makeup bag essentials, all from Sally Beauty Supply and within the $0-10 price range:

My well-used makeup bag

  1. Tweezers: Shape your eyebrows or pluck stray hairs in between appointments
  2. Eyelash curler: Brighten a sleepy eyed look with a five-second squeeze before you apply mascara
  3. Cotton swabs: Smudge pencil eyeliner or touch up small makeup mishaps
  4. Cotton balls/pads: Remove eye makeup and finger nail polish, and apply skincare products
  5. Emery boards: File down and fix broken nails in a few swipes

Do you have any other non-makeup essentials that you keep in your makeup bag?

Wet n wild Rock Solid nail lacquer in sterling silver

15 Jun

When I spotted this nail polish at CVS for 50 percent off ($1.49!), I knew I couldn’t resist. Its flat metallic sheen reminded me a little of the ultra-shiny Minx nails almost every female celebrity has been rocking on the red carpet lately.

Wet n wild in sterling silver

I’ve worn this for the past week and even received a compliment on it at work! Metallics might be a little much for most offices but this one’s pretty understated until the light hits it. I feel like it’s a little wintery, but I like to wear grey and black polish year-round.

As far as fun nail colors go, wet n wild seems to have a good selection among drugstore brands. My first black finger nail polish was actually wet n wild back when the shade was more closely associated with Marilyn Manson and Elvira than a go-to manicure choice.

Have any of you jumped onto the metallic nail bandwagon? Do you think it’s a hot summer trend or better suited for winter?

Quick-dry nails: 5 days later

12 Jun

Five days ago I decided to test out how a quick-drying salon-quality nail product would compare to a similar drugstore product.

So I painted my fingernails with the same nail polish with Sally Hansen 30-Second Top Coat on my right hand and  Orly Flash Dry Drops + Sephora by OPI Top Coat by on my left.

Here are side-by-side comparisons of my nails immediately after painting them and then five days afterward:

Orly Flash Dry Drops

Orly Flash Dry Drops: Day 5

Sally Hansen 30-Second Top Coat

Sally Hansen 30-Second Top Coat: Day 5

So what do you think? Is more chipping worth the cheaper price? I think it may be, considering that together Orly Flash Fly Drops + Sephora by OPI Top Coat cost about $16 and Sally Hansen 30-Second Top Coat costs about $5.

Have you tried any great quick-dry top coats or nail products?

10-minute hair color isn’t for everyone

9 Jun

I started coloring my own hair about two years ago. Since then my naturally auburn hair has been a range of reds, auburns, dark browns and even maroon once, (I thought it was edgy at the time).

With my friend Caitlin sporting maroon locks in Dec. '08

I ended up with maroon hair because I misjudged the color on the box and left it in a few minutes too long. (That picture doesn’t even do it justice. It was almost the color of my shirt in real life.) But I still haven’t learned my lesson – which made my choice of using 10-minute hair color an unwise one.

As you can see my hair is very thick, so I should have known better than to buy a color that only allows 10 minutes for application. But I’m such a sucker for gimmicks.

I started dying my hair with L’Oreal Paris Excellence To-Go in 5RB by sectioning it off as usual, but before I knew it 5 minutes had already passed and I had barely done the sections around my crown. I, of course, panicked and applied the dye to the rest of my hair while managing to get it on the back of my white door, white cabinet underneath the sink and on tan linoleum floor. I tried to wipe up what I could in a few minutes and jumped in the shower.

As you can see below, the final effect was a little darker than I expected, but I do like it.

Before

After

However, I don’t recommend 10-minute hair color unless you have short hair and experience dyeing your own hair.

Have you ever had a similar experience dyeing your own hair?

Will Cover Girl really match my department store makeup shade?

7 Jun

Well, not all of your department store shades. But the current count is more than 600.

You’ve probably seen Cover Girl’s campaign featuring Drew Barrymore, including the commercial challenging viewers to match their department store makeup shades with the online match generator.

I’ve lusted after NARS blush in orgasm for over a year now as a frequent Sephora browser, but never had the stomach to pay the $26 price. I even settled for a smaller portion of powder blush in a Sephora-brand makeup palette that I compared to the NARS sample.

It’s a big deal among beauty addicts and bloggers because the sheer pinky-peach shade is universally-flattering.

But, Cover Girl doesn’t offer a comparable blush shade.

So I decided to find an equivalent for another cult beauty favorite: Diorshow Mascara.

Interestingly, the suggested equivalent is Lashblast Volume Blasting Mascara – which has been my go-to mascara for about two years now. It definitely lengthens, but tends to clump if you pile it on (like me).

Here it is in action:

Photo credit: Elizabeth Lilly

Has anyone else used the match generator to replace your department store shades?