Professional Grade: Wedding Belle

My Little Sister Shelley (daughter of my mentor) is in a wedding today, and she is also playing ‘hostess.’ So she didn’t want to do her makeup herself, and she wanted to make sure that it lasted all day. So she came by and asked me to do something nude and glowing.

The bride’s colors are pink and blue…so I slid a little pink in there to bring the look together:

Hourglass Mineral Veil Primer
Illamasqua Skin Base in #14
Armani Fluid Sheer in #11 (as blush)
By Terry Ombre Blackstar in Misty Rock (lids)
Tarte For True Blood Eyeliner (lashline)
Guerlain Retractable Eye Pencil in #01 (waterline) 
Velour Mink Lashes in Complete Me
DEX Lip Gloss in Christopher Street Orchid

FOTD: Kohl Stuff

I hadn’t used my Guerlain Kohl in a while… so I dusted it off for this FOTD:

Sonia Kashuk Radiant Tinted Moisturizer
Guerlain Giant Mosaic Bronzer (around edges of face)
MAC Mineralize Blush in Fresh Honey
Louise Young Eyeshadow in Ting (browbone)
NARS Eyeshadow in Galapagos (lids)
Guerlain Kohl in Black Fakir (lashline/waterline/smudged in outer corners)
Armani Eyes to Kill Stretch Mascara
Chanel Lip Pencil in Cognac
DEX New York Lip Gloss in Christopher Street Orchid

FOTD: Peaches n’ Gold

I wanted to layer shimmers over mattes. So I used matte peach colors, then layered them with a shimmer gold:

Guerlain Parure Gold (06)
Kevyn Aucoin Radiant Diaphonous Powder
Cargo Blush in Laguna
Chantecaile Whale Compact (highlight)
Rock & Republic Eyeshadow in Tribal (brows)
Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in #69 lashline to brow)
Armani Eyes To Kill Eyeshadow in #18 (lids)
Lise Watier Feline Eyeliner (lashline)
Urban Decay 24/7 Pencil in Zero (waterline)
Armani Eyes To Kill Waterproof Mascara
Armani Silk Lipstick in #20
DEX New York Lip Gloss in Christopher Street Orchid

Glow On: DEX Mineral Glow Reflective Veil (South Hampton)

I keep meaning to pay more attention to this product line. DEX New York really works to accommodate every skin type and skin tone. Their motto is ‘From Sweden to Sudan’ … it seems that they’ve truly got something for everyone.

Recently, I came across the Mineral Glow Reflective Veil in ‘South Hampton’ — which is the perfect highlight for my warm skin tone:

You  have to shake this bottle up before you use the product. And I found that you can actually get a drop of product onto a brush, or directly on the skin without ever ‘touching’ the applicator to anything.

It blends out beauifully, just leaving a soft ‘flesh toned’ highlight. What I like about it is that it doesn’t go distinctly gold, bronze or pink. It’s kind of a combination of all three. It’s perfect for adding a subtle highlight by itself, or blending with a foundation to take the finish from flat to ‘luminous.’
Barring the applicator, this product is pretty awesome. It would have been nice to have it dispensed in a pump or something similar… but I’m not complaining. Much.

You can check out the full line up of makeup products from DEX New York on their website:

IMATS: The Haul

So here’s what came home with me from this year’s IMATS:

I told you guys that NAKED got all my money. I bought the deluxe set of creams, which translates into four full size and four travel size containers of the cream. Allegedly, you can use it EVERYWHERE and even use it to boost your own products. So, that’s what I’ve been doing… I’ve pretty much mixed it with everything, and in the last 24 hours I’ve put it in my hair, on my face, and on my body. It’s chock full of fabulous ingredients (aloe barbadensis, melaluca honey), so I feel very safe using it.

So far, so good.

Bronze Bonanza from Napoleon Perdis. Nothing in this set is actually bronze, but whatever. It was 20 bucks…and it’ll do in a pinch.

Total glitterbomb. But I can see this making a nice eyeshadow. I’ll figure it out.
The lipgloss isn’t really bronze either. But again… it’s whatever.
They gave me this gloss for filling out an information sheet.
It’s a decent summer gloss. And hey, it was free. I am NOT complaining.
DEX Lip Gloss in Columbus Avenue Copper.
Kevyn Aucoin Diaphonous Radiance Powder.

NAKED Cosmetic Pigment Stack in Sierra Nevada. These pigments are safe for use EVERYWHERE, including eyes, lips and even nails. MAC… I’m looking at you. NAKED is over here showing you all the way up!

A lovely gift from the lady at Crown Brushes. Bianca and I were among the last to leave, and the IMATS people were pushing us out the door. The owner was MORTIFIED and ran after us with a brush each for us. She was so apologetic and sweet. We totally appreciated it.

Bindi and Deep Plum eye pencil from Sumita Beauty. This place is local, and offers a professional discount. Who knew?

Kevyn Aucoin Brush Roll. 
That’s my haul from IMATS! Ciao for now!

Holiday Giveaway: And The Winner Is…


You won the final (and biggest) prize in my Holiday Giveaway:
Dior 5-Design Quint in Navy
Dior 5-Design Quint in Pink
Dior Quint in Endless Shine
Dior Single Shadow in Gold Touch
Chanel Eyeshadow Quad in Tentations Cuivree
Guerlain Ors Imperial Shimmer Spray
HABIBI Body Balm in Vanilla & Rose
HABIBI Body Balm in Sugar Cane
Dex Lip Gloss in 5th Avenue
Dex Lip Gloss in Bond Street
MAC Lipstick in Liquid Lurex
Chanel makeup bag (with Chanel samples inside)
Guerlain makeup bag (with Guerlain samples inside)
Sierra, you have 48 hours to send your mailing address to and I’ll mail your goodies right out to you!
If I don’t hear from you in 48 hours, then I have to pick another winner.
Congratulations Again!

Holiday Giveaway: The Final Prize

Hey Everyone!
This is the final prize in this year’s Holiday Giveaway. It consists of a few of my favorite things, some definite covet-worthy items, one totally sold out item, and a bunch of samples to keep you busy until the new year… and beyond!

All together, this is what it looks like. I’ve also broken the items up to give each item it’s chance to shine…

Dior 5-Design Quint in Navy Design
Dior Quint in Endless Shine
Dior 5-Design Quint in Pink Design
Chanel Quad in Tentations Cuivree
Chanel Makeup Pouch (with Chanel Samples Inside)
Guerlain Satin Pouch (with Guerlain Samples Inside)
HABIBI Body Balm in Vanilla & Rose
HABIBI Body Balm in Sugar Cane
MAC Lipstick in Liquid Lurex
Dior Single Eyeshadow in Gold Touch
Guerlain Or Imperiale
Dex Lip Gloss in 5th Avenue (merlot)
Dex Lip Gloss in Bond Street (red)
*You guys know the rules… in order to qualify, you must be a public subscriber. You can amp your chances to win by following me on Twitter @shahadakarim, by liking Adventures In Makeup on Facebook, linking this giveaway to your blog, and actually blogging about the giveaway.*

My Holiday 2010: Favorite Things (Red Lips)

Every year, someone comes out with some guideline about finding your perfect red lip… and every year the method of finding that perfect color seems to be more and more confusing! ‘Experts’ have folks thinking that if you don’t have a certain undertone, then you can’t wear a certain ‘color based’ red lipstick. Untrue. It’s all about the pigmentation level. If you’ve got yellow undertones and you want to wear a blue-based red lippie… just know that it’s gonna go a little pink on you. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

I’m going to post my favorite reds (I have yellow undertones), and you’ll find that the base colors run the gamut. I’ll separate them by base color. Here’s hoping it doesn’t make things MORE confusing…


Illamasqua’s red in ‘Box’ gets a lot of play in my kit. It’s a matte finish, and goes on a ‘true red’ — regardless of any skintone. It’s considered a blue based red, but I find it to be pretty universal. It can be a little drying, so a healthy dose of lip balm before use is recommended.
Dolce & Gabanna’s red in ‘Scarlett’ is a true blue base. This goes on a little more pink and less red on me, but I LOVE it. The formula is creamy and lasts me all day. This is a good lipstick… from an excellent makeup line. I imagine that D&G tends to get lost in the makeup shuffle because it’s not widely distributed (I have to get mine from Saks) and minimally advertised.
NARS offered a lovely brown based red called ‘Rouge Basque  ‘ with their Autumn 2010 collection. I think that this color might go a bit muddy on the fairest skin tones, but it holds well with olive complexions, as well as medium and deeper skin tones. This is what I like to call a ‘fool proof red.’ It goes on easily, and is so flattering that you don’t have to stress about it looking garish.

Now I might get a little pushback on this one. YSL Rouge Volupte Lipstick in Red Taboo looks like a true blue red in the tube, but it looks MORE like a true red on yellow based skin tones. Therefore, it falls in my category of yellow based reds. This color is DIVINE. The formula is DIVINE. I cannot say enough about this formula. You have to be careful with it… because it has so much slip that it’ll feel greasy on first contact. It’s not. It’s highly pigmented and lasts for hours. I’d recommend a lip pencil in a nude color for this… it’s easy to overdo it. I prefer to draw the lipline, then use a brush to fill it in. Using this lipstick straight out of the tube may prove to be a challenge.

Same for this one. La Prarie’s Lipstick in Rouge Claire looks the BEST (in my opinion) on olive and yellow based skin tones. I find it a little dark for fair skinned clients. The perk about this lipstick is that it plumps the lips (without any tingly irritation reserved for most plumping products). I get a really awesome boost in my cupids bow, everytime I use this lipstick. Love it!


Yes, there are some red lipsticks that are considered orange based. They’re typically described as ‘orange red.’ The best one to fit this category for me is Illamasqua’s Lipstick in Ignite. It would likely look more red on fair skin, and more orange as you go darker (with skintones). It’s a very deep orangey red on me. I keep it with the reds, because it’s more that than orange. It’s a nice twist on the classic red lip. I highly recommend it.

That covers lipsticks…

I feel like no one realizes they need a red lip pencil, until they start digging through their makeup stash and realize that they don’t have a red lip pencil.
Here are my favorites:

This Make Up For Ever pencil in 9C stays in heavy rotation. It goes on smooth, and has enough of a brown base to be flattering on just about everyone. I’m on my third one.

Urban Decay makes a fabulous line of lip pencils (and eyeliners) in their 24/7 line. This gel pencil in Gash goes on a dark red, and wears beautifully. Because of its formulation, it doesn’t crack or bleed into the sides of the mouth like a lot of darker colored pencils can.


This is my favorite product EVER. Not kidding. Chanel’s Rouge Allure Laque in Dragon (75) is the most flattering red lippie I’ve ever used. I love this lip color! It’s the deepest red I’ve come across… without going burgundy or brown. It wears a true red on just about every skin tone… I have no idea how they did that! Think of it as a stain, a gloss, and a lipstick all rolled into one. Highly recommend this! This was my first laque, and I’ve been buying repeats of it ever since.

Beaute’s Weightless Lip Creme in Masochist runs a VERY close second. It features the same properties of the laque, with a much lighter feel. I’ve sometimes forgotten that I’m wearing it and wiped my lips… with tragic results. I would say that I use this one about as much as I use the laque. Sometimes, it comes down to which one is within reach at the time that I need it.

I have a LOT of red lip glosses. Too many, in fact. But I do have some standouts that I consistently go back to…

DEX lipgloss in Bond Street rose quickly to to the top of my favorites list. I’m relatively new to this vegan brand, but I was instantly impressed by the ‘non sticky’ consistency and long wear. Love this stuff. I keep one in my purse, because just this gloss with a little tinted moisturizer and mascara … and I’m good to go!

Rock & Republic makes an awesome red lipgloss in Cougar. I LOVE the name, by the way. But, like most Rock & Republic makeup items, this one may soon be hard to come by. I hope they keep the makeup line around. It’s really good.

That’s it! My favorite ‘red lippies’ (and lippie helpers) for the season… and beyond. I hope I didn’t make things MORE confusing. Thanks for indulging me… Ciao for now!