Maintain Your Summer Glow with NARS New Blush & Bronzer Duo

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You ladies already know my go-to blush staple is none other than NARS “Orgasm”! I honestly have not found a blush that even comes close to the fresh, bronzy glow this blush gives me. So I was really excited to hear the news about some new products NARS is releasing exclusively for Sephora stores. 

Available May 1st, NARS has created sleek compact duos of their signature best selling cheek shades paired with the brand’s iconic Laguna Bronzing Powder (a diffused brown with a golden shimmer).  The four compacts include the following shades:

(L) Desire blush (a delicate bright pink)/ (R) Laguna bronzer

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(L) Oasis blush (a sparkling pink champagne) /(R) Laguna bronzer

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(L) Orgasm blush (peachy pink with golden shimmer)/ (R) Laguna bronzer

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(L) Deep Throat blush (a flirty sheer peach)/ (R) Laguna bronzer

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All of the NARS Blush/Bronzer Duos retail at $41 each and will be available May 1st at Sephora and Sephora.com . 

BONUS!!!

For Spring 2013, NARS is also debuting a new limited edition gift set based on New York’s top selling hues.   

The gift set includes:

Eye & Cheek Palette:

"Amour" blush (a peachy pink)
“Laguna” bronzing powder (brown with golden shimmer)
"Biarritz" single eyeshadow (neutral, cream colored beige)
"Nepal" eye shadow (soft, sheer rose)
"New York" single eyeshadow (plum brown)
"Galapagos" single eyeshadow (bitter chocolate infused with gold)

Nail Polish: Chinatown” (blood red)

Lip Gloss: Dolce Vita” (a sheer dusty rose) 

Price: $75 per set
Available: May 1st at select retailers including: Barney’s, Lord & Taylor, Saks Fifth Avenue, Henri Bendel, and Bloomingdale’s Soho 


Top 4 Favorite Liquid Foundations

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I’ve been in transition mode with my makeup drawer due to the weather warming up. I’m happy to announce that since coming back from my birthday vacation in Miami, I’ve got a nice lil tan and my color has returned to my face lol. 

::Breaks out favorite dark foundations!!::

Now the following foundations (pictured above) are ones that I use pretty regularly, some more than others. I’ll give you a detailed description and what I like about each and also reveal my top two favs! Keep reading to get the scoop.

YSL Touche Éclat Illuminating Foundation

Why I love it: This is by far my favorite foundation. I love that it gives you this dewy, bronzy glow and feels really nice on the skin. It’s lightweight and also contains SPF 19. I apply this foundation using either my fingers or a foundation brush. By using my fingers it really warms up the foundation into my skin to create a flawless, light finish. 

Coverage: Medium, buildable coverage. Great for spot touch ups on any dark blemishes as well. 

Price: $55 at Sephora, Nordstrom, & Saks Fifth Avenue

*Note: Because I have a combination/oily skin type, I do use a sheer setting powder lightly on my t-zone (forehead, nose, and chin) because I don’t want to look overly dewy (or in my case, overly oily).

Giorgio Armani Maestro Foundation

Why I love it: Talk about ultra-lightweight! This technology in this foundation is really unique, which is what drew me to it in the first place. The Maestro foundation requires you to shake the bottle first, and apply the foundation using the dropper inside, onto your fingertip and applied immediately. Because the consistency of it is so light, you have a short time period to apply it to your skin. It’s recommended that you use your fingertips instead of a brush because of the short time span before it dries. I love that it leaves my skin feeling like silk!

Coverage: Light to medium coverage (great for natural looks)

Price: $62 at Nordstrom & Saks Fifth Avenue

Note: If you’re looking for a heavier coverage, then this foundation is not for you. It’s very light and natural making it perfect for the summer season giving you a “no makeup feel.”  

Yep, you guessed it! These two are my top two favs! Now, on to the next two…

Dolce & Gabbana Perfect Luminous Liquid Foundation

Why I love it: This is my second “dewy” option to the YSL Touche Éclat. This foundation is best applied with a foundation brush using a patting motion on the cheekbones, nose, chin, and forehead to really concentrate on the dewy areas of the face. D&G is all about enhancing your natural beauty. It’s moisturizing and comes in 15 shades. 

Coverage: Medium, buildable coverage. 

Price: $59 at select Saks Fifth Avenue stores & Sephora

Note: The only con is that the color range is not very friendly towards women with a darker skin tone. After my complexion (Golden Honey), there was only one shade darker (Soft Sable).

Urban Decay NAKED SKIN Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup

Why I love it: This is a great, affordable foundation! I love it because it gives you a nice light coverage that still makes your skin look seamless. It creates a luminous, demi-matte finish for you girls who prefer to stay away from the dewy finish but don’t want something totally matte. 

Coverage: Light to medium coverage (buildable)

Price: $39 at Sephora, Urban Decay website, and Ulta

Note: I like that this foundation is available in both warm and cool undertones. The color range is available in 18 shades! So there’s something for everyone! For my full review (pics included), check out a previous post HERE

What shades do I wear? 

YSL Touche Éclat: B70
Giorgio Armani Maestro: 10 

Dolce & Gabbana Perfect Luminous: Golden Honey 170
Urban Decay NAKED SKIN: 9.0

Have you ladies tried any of these foundations? What do you personally look for when choosing a liquid foundation? 


NARS Summer 2013 Color Collection

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I love color, especially when wearing a really bold lip! It’s funny because I used to wear really bright colored eyeshadows in college and once I graduated, my makeup routine became pretty minimal (mostly do a former job with strict makeup policies). 

Spring and summer are always perfect times to branch out and refresh your makeup routine. So when I saw NARS Cosmetics new Summer 2013 Color Collection, I regained my excitement. Buuut, I will also admit that as much as I love color, some of those NARS eyeshadow duos can be so intimidating! Most likely I would learn towards one color more than the other, and the duo never really gets used … as a duo at least. 

Watch this brief tutorial on how to get the NARS Summertime look created by their lead makeup artist.

I love the combination of mixing a soft yellow eye with a lilac, pink lip and soft cheeks. And for those that like a little drama, that clean cat eye is the finishing touch. It’s fresh, youthful, and fun!  Here are the products that were used to create this look:

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Fashion Rebel Duo Eyeshadow in Dandelion & African Violet; $34

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(L to R: Puerto Vallarta Multiple in Shimmering Tangerine, $39; Paris Follies Larger Than Life Lipgloss in Pink Flamingo, $26; Tender Night Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Iridescent Lilac (limited edition), $25) 

Check out the rest of the Summer 2013 Color Collection below:

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Euphrate Single Eyeshadow in Frosted Mint Steel, $24

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(L to R: Tolede Lipstick in Pink Rose, $24; Barrow Street Larger Than Life Longwear Eyeliner in Seafoam Green, $24;  Madness Nail Polish in Electric Orange (Limited Edition), $19)

**photos courtesy of NARS Cosmetics


The collection is available beginning April 15 on narscosmetics.com . What do you think? Do you see anything new that you would like to try? 

Product Review: L’Oreal True Match Super Blendable Crayon Concealer

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I’ve been stuck on some pretty high-end concealer favorites for a while, and now that I’m running low on those I decided to give some good ol drug store brands a shot and see if they stand up to the test!

First up, L’Oreals new True Match Super Blendable Crayon Concealer!

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I like to have a subtle highlight effect when choosing my concealer shade. So I went with the medium/deep warm-6 color that is about a shade in a half lighter than my skin tone and has a golden undertone. 

There are a total of six concealer shades to choose from, with this color being the second to “darkest” in the selection. 

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Here is a quick swatch of what it looks like on my hand.

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When choosing a concealer, here are the top three things I look for:

1. Undertone: I look for concealer that has a golden undertone because I like the look of a highlighted area under my eyes. Anything that is too neutral looks ashy on me.

2. Consistency: I look for a concealer that goes on smooth and creamy making it easier to blend. Because I like the consistency to be creamy, I always set my concealer with a translucent powder to prevent creasing lines underneath my eyes.

3. Coverage: Concealer that actually conceals isn’t too much to ask for right? Well you would be surprised. I have dark spots (from popping pimples…which I don’t recommend you do) and semi-dark circles under my eyes, so a concealer with pigment and coverage is key.

I apply my concealer in somewhat of a triangle shape under my eyes and on any dark spots.

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Next I take my ring finger and smooth out the concealer down to my cheeks to make sure it’s blended seamlessly with my foundation. The next step (not pictured) is to lightly brush a translucent powder over the concealer to set it and prevent any creasing lines.

Be gentle when blending because the skin under your eye is very delicate. 

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You see the difference it makes with concealer on the left side and none on the right? The correct shade can instantly light up your face and give you a refreshed look!

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The L’Oreal True Match Super Blendable Crayon Concealer is definitely a great drugstore buy. It got the job done and the crayon stick makes it easy to use. Get’s a thumbs up from me! 

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Price Tag: $7.99 

Available at Target

Product Review: MAKE UP FOR EVER Pro Finish Foundation

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MAKE UP FOR EVER just released their first new foundation in over four years called Pro Finish Multi-Use Powder Foundation. It is a unique multi-use compact foundation that is formulated to be applied wet or dry. When applied wet, it’s said to deliver a sheer, satin coverage and when applied dry it’s said to offer a full, matte coverage.

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The foundation comes in a circular compact with a sponge tucked underneath in a bottom compartment of the compact.

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My face is usually a lighter shade than the rest of my body, so when it comes to picking out my color of foundation, I tend to go a shade darker than my natural skin tone. I also do this because I like to look “tan” year round lol.

Words of advice when having to choose your color based on what is pictured online (like I had to do)…

-It’s safer to go with the darker choice. Especially since summer is right around the corner, you can “grow” into your darker shade.
-If you are ordering online, google image the color you want, and see if any pictures come up with complexions that are close to yours.
-Do a little research. Read reviews about the color and the way the foundation lasts all day. If you have dry skin and the foundation is matte, you may want to go with something has more of a dewy finish to add moisture back into your skin.


I chose a shade with a neutral/yellow undertone, #174 Neutral Saffron.

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Ok on to the review.

BEFORE picture with no makeup. Don’t go too hard on me lol. 

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I applied the foundation on half of my face using the dry sponge technique. It definitely gave me a matte finish. I usually prefer something that is a little more dewy, but the color is right on.

AFTER picture of the foundation applied to my entire face in addition to my normal makeup routine.

I like the new Pro Finish Foundation. It gave me the coverage I was looking for while still appearing “natural”. I didn’t care to apply the foundation using the sponge, so on the other side of my face I used a big fluffy powder brush which still gave me great coverage and didn’t come across as being so matte. I’ll try the wet sponge technique next time to see if it gives me more of a dewy finish.

Overall, Make Up Forever’s Pro Finish Multi-Use Foundation gets a thumbs up from me!

It comes in 25 different colors with neutral, pink, and golden undertones (so virtually a shade out there for everyone), and retails at $36 each. You can find the foundation at the Make Up For Ever counter at Sephora stores.
 

MAKE UP FOR EVER Launches First Ever Mobile Tour

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Have you ever experienced an event where an insanely popular makeup brand travels around from state to state just to teach you how to do your own makeup? And I mean, teaching you from the products in your own makeup bag? Well I havn’t, but I’m definitely in on the idea!

MAKE UP FOREVER is taking their Makeup School on the road, traveling to nine cities across North America. Will yours be one of them?

Here’s the scoop!

WHO: MAKE UP FOREVER Make Up School teamed up with actress Christina Ricci for a Make Up Bag Remix session.

WHAT: Book an appointment for a 30 minute one-on-one personal makeup bag evaluation, where a professional artist will go through your bag, provide a hands-on lesson explaining how to apply each of your products (no matter the brand), then show you how to use what you already own to create your most flattering look!

Not only do you get the 30 minute personal lesson, but you also get to walk away with a new makeup bag (pictured below), a custom face chart detailing how/where to use your products, and a professional photo of your “after” look which will be uploaded to the MAKE UP FOR EVER USA Facebook page.

WHEN: You can sign up to book your appointment to secure your Make Up Bag Remix session beginning January 23rd by visiting www.facebook.com/MAKEUPFOREVERUSA . Sessions are available Saturday, 12pm-8pm and Sunday 11am-7pm.

WHERE: Tour dates are as follows-

Los Angeles, CA: February 1st-3rd
San Francisco, CA: February 9th-10th
Las Vegas, NV: February 16th-17th
Dallas, TX: February 23rd-24th
Miami, FL: March 2nd-3rd
New York, NY: March 9th-10th
Boston, MA: March 23rd-24th
Chicago, IL: April 6th-7th
Toronto, ON: April 13th-14th 


This sounds like an awesome experience and opportunity for you ladies who live in the above cities! I wish MAKE UP FOR EVER was coming to Atlanta. Anyway ladies, don’t waste any time signing up. You can do it here

(above: The Remix make up bag you’ll be leaving with!)

If you go, be sure to comment below about your experience! I would love to hear about it! 

2013 Spring Trends … With A McKenzie Renae Twist

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I was a little disappointed to read that “Electric Red” is one of the makeup trends for this Spring. ::womp womp:: Don’t get me wrong, I love red! It’s classic, sexy, and timeless … not necessarily trendy. Believe me, the model pictured above is working that red hunny!

But I have a few looks in mind that I would love to see as 2013 Spring makeup trends! 

1. Purple/Violet Lips

I love this look because it can be super daring, yet so ladylike in the matter of shades. You can opt for a soft, pastel lilac hue mixed with a hint of fuchsia for a chic pout, or a vibrant electric purple to satisfy your wild side! Both looks paired with a simple eye, manicured brows, and a great volumizing mascara will be sure to set you apart from the school of rosebuds come Spring ;)

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and if you’re really feeling daring …

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#POW!

2. Fluttery Lashes

I think every women should know how to apply a strip of false lashes! I’m not saying you need to wear them everyday, but know that a great pair of falsies can alter your eye shape in just a few easy steps (check out my tutorial here on how to apply yourself). Keep them wispy, soft, and natural  to compliment your other beautiful features. My personal favorites are the Ardell Demi Wispies! You can find them at drugstores and Sally’s Beauty Supply for $3-$4.

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3. Short Dope Nails

Although I rarely get creative masterpieces painted on my talons, I can appreciate an awesome nail design! Hey, I feature nail art in my dope nails posts every week :) I would love to see the trend stick around, but shave down the talons a bit. It’s fun and one of the easiest ways to “express yourself”. Kudos to you ladies who rock stiletto nails, because I … just … can’t! lol 

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4. Smokey Eyes and Nude Lips

Initially, when one thinks Spring, they think fresh faced, clean, and simple. Why not spice things up and get things sexy and steamy? A strategically messy smokey eye paired with a clean nude lip is sultry and very come-hither for Spring. All you need is a kick a**, super black, kohl eye liner pencil and smudger/q tip and you are good to go! A cheapie and favorite kohl pencil of mine, is the L’Oreal Extra Intense Liquid Eyeliner Pencil.

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*photos courtesy of Google image search

I am obviously picturing a very glamorous upcoming Spring! lol I’m down … it’s all about choices right? ::wink::

What are some trends you want to see this Spring? For those planning on breaking the rules, what looks do you plan on rocking?!