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Sunday, 29 October 2017

Halloween Look of the Day: Butterfly in the Sky

Hi, everyone! I know I said something similar about IMATS, but there really are few things like Halloween to inspire my creativity and get me blogging! I apologize for the extended absence recently. I'll be able to share soon what's been going on in my life that has made blogging tougher (good things, I promise!), but for now, can we bask in the Halloween spirit?

Though I didn't have any Halloween events to attend this year, I didn't want to miss the chance to create an extra special look for the season. My Halloween makeup inspirations vary wildly (from creepy dolls, to fierce devils, pop art, sirens, surreal fairies,  Egyptian goddesses, and ice queens) and this year I was drawn to the beauty of nature. I'd had chance sightings of several monarch butterflies lately and am always completely in awe of the unique patterns and vivid colours. Transforming my face into one of these fascinating creatures was a challenge I was willing to accept! 

For the look, I wanted to accurately emulate the colours and patterns of a monarch butterfly, but also didn't want to makeup to look completely literal (didn't want it to look like I'd had my face painted at a fair). To do this, I found makeup shades that were totally fitting and studied monarchs' typical appearance. For a bit of abstraction, I created a shape that was one part butterfly wings and one part masquerade mask, for a bit of drama and flirtiness. I also opted for forego the antenna and butterfly body. 

I started by outlining the general shape of the wings with a pale eyeliner, so that I could have a guide but so any initial mistakes wouldn't be so obvious. Once I achieved a shape I was happy with, I reached for the ever-amazing Kat von D Mi Vida Loca Remix Palette, which features an eye shadow from every hue of the rainbow. I used three main shadows for the colouring- Harpsichord (a bronze-tinged shimmery burnt orange), Analogue (a true matte orange), and Fran (a bright matte butter yellow). I outlined the edges with the deepest of the shades, Harpsichord, for some shimmer and depth, and then blended in Analogue for that classic vivid monarch orange. For further dimension and light, I applied Fran all over my lids and underneath my eyes. 

Then it was time for black liner! I outlined the edges of the wings as well as created the monarch pattern with Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes eyeliner in 0L, a true black. I made the outer lines thicker for added definition (and to make room for the white dots!) and the inner lines more subtle. I also lined my upper and lower lashes with the black liner for added drama. Next was the extra special touch! I reached for my trusty Illamasqua Precision Ink Liquid Eyeliner in Scribe, a true, matte, milky white. It's come in handy for several Halloween looks in the past and this was no exception! I used Scribe to add a random smattering of dots around the outer edges and thicker black veins of colour to complete the monarch effect. 

The final touches were loads of mascara (my current fave- Essence Cosmetics Forbidden Volume Mascara) and some killer orange lips. I started with a base of Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Iberico, a bold matte tomato orange. It then topped this lip pencil with Kat Von D Harpsichord and Analogue shadows to unify the face paint and lip colour. I added a very soft contouring of the lips with Kat von D Lemmy eye shadow, a deep metallic grassy green. For a subtle pattern on the lips, I added a few dots of Scribe and 0L liners. And that's it! 

Here is a close-up of the look: 

And a couple shots of the look in sunlight: 

I had so much fun with this look and was super pleased with how it turned out. It was relatively simple to create and yet packed a powerful punch! I know I've said this about other looks in the past, but I really did not want to wash it off.

And as a side note: once I decided on a title for this post, I have not been able to get the theme song for Reading Rainbow out of my head. But I digress ;)

What are you wearing for Halloween this year? Any fun Halloween traditions?

Thanks so much for stopping by! xo

Monday, 4 September 2017

Look of the Day: Suck It, Sunshine

Hi, everyone! If you had a peek at my last two posts, you'll know what I attended IMATS last week, my favourite makeup event of the year. At the beginning of the day, I didn't even think I'd be going, but I was meeting up with my blogger pals for lunch, so decided that it was still a perfect day to up my makeup game. I've been super inspired lately by some amazing looks using yellow eye shadow, so I thought I'd give the colour palette a try! 

Whenever I'm planning to sport a bold shade of shadow, I almost invariably reach for the Kat von D Mi Vida Loca Remix Palette, which is a true rainbow of hues. For this look, I applied Fran eye shadow (a true sunny yellow) all over my lid and underneath the eye. I then patted some of Legend (a shimmery lemon yellow) on the centre of the lid for some sheen and on the inner corners of the eye to brighten things up. I created a transition in the crease using Noble (a light neutral beige), added some extra definition with Vox shadow (a deep neutral brown), and highlighted the inner corners and brow bones with Skulls shadow (a frosty white). 

For the lips, I opted for my favourite deep cherry brown hue, Too Faced Melted Matte Liquid Lipstick in Suck It. For a subtle shine, I topped Suck It with Tom Ford Lip Colour in Dark and Stormy. Given that the eyes and lips were both on the bold side, I chose a light layer of one of my new favourite blushes, Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Paaarty!, which is from this year's Sephora birthday gift. It's a beaut! 

Here's a closeup of the eye, cheek, and lip shades: 

The Breakdown:

Foundation: Revlon ColourStay Whipped Makeup in Buff
Concealer: Smashbox Studio Skin 24 hour Concealer in Fair Light
Powder: Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder in 011 Creamy Natural
Bronzer: Revlon PhotoReady Bronzer in Bronzed and Chic

Blush: Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Paaarty! (from the Sephora b-day gift)
Highlighter: Kat von D Crushed Metal Shadow in Thunderstruck 

Brows: Anastasia Brow Powder Duo in Taupe and Tinted Brow Gel in Caramel
Primer: Essence I Love Colour Intensifying Eye Shadow Base
Eye Shadow: (all from the Kat von D Mi Vida Loca Remix Palette): Fran eye shadow (all over lid, blended up to the crease, and underneath the eye), Legend Eye Shadow (in the centre of the lids and the inner third of lower lash line), Noble eye shadow (in the crease, as a transition), Vox eye shadow (to deepen the crease and outer corners), and Skulls (as a highlight on inner corners and brow bone)

Eyeliner: Rodial Smokey Eye Pen in Brown
Mascara: Essence Forbidden Volume Mascara in Black and Forbidden Volume Topcoat

Lipstick: Too Faced Melted Matte Lipstick in Suck It topped with Tom Ford Lip Colour in Dark and Stormy 

                                                    And a few more shots of the look:

This look definitely inspired me to play with yellow more often- such a cheery shade and easier to wear than you'd think! I'm also loving the pairing of brown and yellow shades for this summer-to-fall transition time. I'm fully ready for fall, but I may have to wear sunshine yellow year-round :)

What makeup shades have been inspiring you lately?

Thanks so much for stopping by and have a wonderful week!


Wednesday, 30 August 2017

IMATS 2017 Haul

Hi, everyone! If you saw my last post, you'll know that I attended IMATS Toronto last Saturday and it was a blast! I was able to go unexpectedly at the last moment, so it felt like an extra special treat and I wanted to take full advantage. For someone who didn't know she was going, I still cleaned up pretty well! I had a sense of what brands would be exhibiting this year, so I quickly made a mental list of the booths I had to check out. And off I went! 

Here's a peek of everything I snagged: 

One booth that I was thrilled to explore was Suva Beauty, a Canadian brand known for its eye products. I have seen countless swatches of social media of their ultra-vibrant, superbly pigmented shadows and pigments, so I could not wait to test them in person! 

Suva Beauty Shimmer Shadows in Empire State, Emerald City, Resort, and Ba
I swatched over a dozen shades of Suva eye shadows and found myself enjoying the texture and finish of the Shimmer Shadows the most. I wanted to select shades that were bold and vibrant, but also wearable. That means I passed on their super striking neon shades- but maybe next time! Instead, I chose Empire State (the most beautiful champagne pinky ivory that works amazingly as a highlight or as a wash all over the lid), Emerald City (a warm mid-tone turquoise), Resort (a warm reddish-cranberry), and Ba (the most stunning jewel-toned purple). I also bought an empty 4-pan palette so I could keep all of these shadows together. 

Here are swatches of the four Suva shadows: 

Suva Beauty Shimmer Shadows in (L-R): Empire State, Emerald City, Resort, and Ba

Suva Beauty Hydra Liner Matte in Sea Nymph
I was also totally taken by the brand's Hydra Liners, water-activated budge-proof cream eyeliners. I opted for Sea Nymph, a deep teal that is a total mermaid shade! It's even greener than the swatch below shows: 

Left: Suva Beauty Hydra Liner in Sea Nymph

The Kat von D Beauty booth was also a must-visit for me as there was a great 30% discount and I totally fell in love with the products I bought from the brand last year. I ended up buying quite a bit! 

Kat von D Beauty Studded Kiss Lipsticks in Countess and Poe
I had yet to try any of the Studded Kiss lippies, but they were being offered at half price during the show ($13 CAD each), so I couldn't resist. I chose Countess, an amazing neon orange red and Poe, a shimmery deep blue. 

Kat von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks in Nahz Fur Atoo, Lolita, and K-Dub
I also knew that I had to expand my collection of ELLs, as they're my favourite liquid lipstick formula! This time around, I chose Nahs Fur Atoo (a striking deep warm blood red that will be perfect for Fall) and K-Dub (an ultra cool-toned bubble gum pink). I was also generously gifted the shade Lolita (the brand's signature 90s nude brown) for attending Kelseyanna Fitzpatrick's demo using KVD products. So exciting! 

Kat von D Everlasting Glimmer Veils in Razzle and Televator
The KVD products I was most excited to check out were the brand-new Glimmer Veils- sparkly lip products that can be worn solo or atop your favourite matte lipstick. The shade range is bold and beautiful and this Instagram post inspired me to choose Razzle (a cool-toned fuchsia) and Televator (a cool-toned deep purple). 

Here are swatches of all the Kat von D Beauty lip products I purchased: 

(L-R): Kat von D Beauty Studded Kiss Lipsticks in Countess and Poe, Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in K-Dub, Lolita, and Nahz Fur Atoo, and Everlasting Glimmer Veils in Razzle and Televator

I wasn't planning on purchasing brushes at IMATS, but when I saw just how beautiful and affordable the new Royal and Langnickel Moda Metallics Brushes were, I couldn't help but grab a few! 

Royal and Langnickel Moda Metallics Brushes: Super Crease, Complexion, and Smokey Eye
I chose three brushes that I thought I'd get plenty of use from and that would also be unique in my collection. I chose the Super Crease brush (only $4; a domed shadow brush that will be perfect for deepening and blending crease shades), the Complexion brush (only $8; which could be used for foundation or to apply a heavier dose of blush or bronzer), and the Smoky Eye brush (only $3; perfect for smoking out shadow in the crease, outer corners, or underneath the eye). Plus, they have pretty textured metallic handles! 

Every single year I have been tempted by Lit Cosmetics (because their glitters are all kinds of fabulous), but I finally bit the bullet this time around. 

Lit Cosmetics Glitter in Material Girl and Metals in Magnetic + Gold, Risque + Gold, and Escape + Gold
One of the reasons I hadn't purchased from Lit in the past is because (even though I love glitter), I wear glitter so rarely and find it to be a bit high maintenance. This year, they introduced a new product, their Lit Metals, which are glittery powder eye shadows that are activated easily with water or mixing medium, no glitter glue required! Plus they were offering all products at 3/$30, which was a fabulous deal.

After tons of swatching, I found myself liking the finish and dimension of the golden glitter shades the best (each tone is offered in both silver and gold varieties). I chose Magnetic + Gold (a cool taupe with warm golden glitter), Risque + Gold (a purple rose with gold glitter), and Escape + Gold (a turquoise with gold glitter). Because I am a blogger, the brand was kind enough to offer a fourth item for free. I chose Glitter in Material Girl, a purple magenta that's equal parts Barbie and punk. I can't wait to try it! 

(L-R): Lit Metals in Risque + Gold, Magnetic + Gold, Escape + Gold, and Glitter in Material Girl 

Phewf, that was a long one!! I hope you enjoyed having a peek at my spoils from IMATS this year. Look out for some makeup looks using the products coming up soon! (Or check my Instagram for some sneak peeks!)

Thanks so much for stopping by! xo


Monday, 28 August 2017

IMATS Toronto 2017

Hi, everyone! If there's anything to re-ignite my passion for makeup and for sharing this passion with you, it's attending IMATS. The International Makeup Artist Trade Show hits Toronto annually and is all about the craft of makeup artistry. It features makeup talks and demonstrations, artistry competitions, and the opportunity to purchase hard-to-find products at exciting discounts. What's not to love? This year's IMATS was extra special because I originally did not think I'd be able to make it, but thanks to the generosity of a friend, I was able to attend all afternoon on Saturday. It was an unexpected treat and I tried to squeeze every last moment! This was my fourth consecutive year attending (and my fifth show overall, as I was lucky enough to attend the NYC show in 2016) and I was just as excited this time around as I know the vendors, demonstrators, and creative atmosphere always fuels my love of the craft. 

This year's IMATS was held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, as it has in previous years, returning to one of the smaller subterranean halls in the complex. It was slightly smaller, though also somewhat less crowded than previous years, but it wasn't without its long lines! My first stop of the day was at the Kat von D Beauty booth, which had me in line for about half an hour. I chose to wait at this vendor because the Kat von D booth was a highlight of last year's show for me- the discounts were pretty great, the booth was decked out in all kinds of gothic glam, and I have absolutely loved the products I snagged at last year's show, so I was eager to add to my collection! This year's booth touted the brand's new fragrance duo and had a plush, pleather couch to lounge on before buying. 

Thanks to Julie at Swatch and Review for the photo (and for waiting in line with me ;))

After Kat von D, my next stop was Suva Beauty. This was the brand's first time exhibiting and the Toronto show and I was super eager to check them out because of their vibrant shade range and the intense pigmentation of their shadows. Their booth was indeed a display of bold, vivid colour and I was happy to delve right in! 

They were offering pre-made palettes as well as single shadows that you could customize into your own 4- and 8-pan palettes. They were offering their US prices in Canadian dollars, which led to a savings of about $3-4 per shadow, which was great! 

My stop at the Suva booth was a true swatch-fest and I have this photo to prove it! 

Stop three was the Lit Cosmetics booth. Lit is famous for their immense selection of colourful glitters, which my friends have been praising for years. I finally took the plunge into the brand and I can't wait to give them a go! The brand was featuring their new Lit Metals, glittery metallic shadows that are activated with water or glitter base/mixing medium. I opted for three of these, since they felt lower-maintenance than standard glitter, but were just as dazzling! The brand was offering a fabulous 3/$30 special and were adding an extra full-sized freebie for blogger and other press. A perfect deal for a proper introduction to the brand. 

Other bustling booths of note were Inglot (staffed by my lovely blogger buds Maggie from JustEnufEyes and LJ from AnythingButMarzipan)....

And the Make Up For Ever booth, which had a huge line as always...

... and also a colourful mural hand-painted by brand founder Dany Sanz herself! Bummed to have missed her performance, but the painting was quite the sight.

And like all years, there were dozens of other vendors selling all kinds of beauty supplies including lashes galore, hundreds of brushes, and body paint in every neon shade you could imagine. 

Another huge part of my enchantment with IMATS is the amazing special effects makeup artistry coming to life throughout the show. This year I had a chance to chat with this lovely monster, who happened to be the model of the winning Battle of the Brushes competition. So fierce! 

I also stumbled across this stunning mermaid, who was eager to take a selfie. Only at IMATS! 

There were also some spooky and gory special effects creatures on display, which are always such a treat to see in person. 

Another aspect that makes IMATS special are the live makeup demonstrations by makeup pros from all areas of the industry. This year, I was lucky enough to get to watch Kelseyanna Fitzpatrick in action. She is the one of the badass key artists behind the Kat von D Beauty brand whose gory-glam style is totally up my alley. Her demo was actually a work of performance art with bold, emotional music that focused around the creation of an editorial look that was ghoulish and glam, like an oil painting brushed with blood and glitter. It was truly mesmerizing to watch! 

And there were plenty of other makeup artists doing their thing around the showroom like legend Eve Pearl, who seemed to be doing a live demo for television. 

And not to be cheesy (but who are we kidding, I'm cheesy), IMATS would not be half as fun without my friends. It had been far too long since I'd spent some time with my blogger babes, so it was a delight to catch up with and revel in makeup geekery with them :)

Photo from Chelle at Makeup Your Mind

And for someone who got to attend at the last minute, I did end up with a fairly epic haul. Stay tuned for my next post to get a full rundown of what I picked up! 

Thanks so much for stopping by! xo