Monday, July 27, 2009

the promised land

I have certainly been neglectful of this little blog, haven't I? I apologize.

This is going to be an uber girly, very shopping filled and hair/makeup-centric post, so don't say I didn't warn you.

I went to Vegas about a week and a half ago for the North American Hair Awards (NAHA). I had a half hour chat with Nicholas French about hair shows, got a few hugs and pics with Phillip Wilson, met Eric Fisher, Daniel Holzberger, Vivienne Mackinder, and many, many more. I came back ecstatic about hair, makeup, photoshoots, and fashion/hair shows. I cannot wait to be finished with school and have at least a little piece of knowledge about this industry. Next year I want to be a beacon student and take classes from some of the bigger hair designers and hair school owners in North America. I'm also going to enter the NAHA student category. Basically, I've been inspired. And I can't wait to do something with that inspiration as my experience grows.

While in Vegas I, of course, hit up Sephora. I wanted to go to the MAC store as well, but I decided to hold off until I have my 20% discount card from the MAC makeup class at school. Anyway, Sephora was glorious, as usual. I finally bought some Tarte EmphasEYES black eyeliner. I've been wanting to try this kind of eyeliner out for over a year now but just couldn't make the switch from my favorite (Forever MakeUp AquaEyes). The only change now was the Sephora was out of AquaEyes in black and it's Urban Decay backup 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil and my nub of eyeliner just isn't cutting it anymore. So far, I'm really enjoying my Tarte stand in. The pencil is very very thin, which makes natural looking application easy, but it's also has enough pigment to create dramatic eyes.

Also in my shopping bag was LashFusion XL. Now, I'm pretty picky about my mascaras. I mean, I'm picky about all my makeup, but I've got long, somewhat thick eyelashes, and finding a mascara that truly brings out their potential isn't easy. Givenchy's PhenomenEyes does the trick for length, but I've found it doesn't really make my lashes look fuller. They just get sticky and look a litte clumpy. MAC's PlushLash mascara has been my top choice for natural looking darker eyelashes. It doesn't particularly lengthen them, but my lashes definitely look fuller. Now, though, I've found a combination of the two. LashFusion XL plumps, lifts, and elongates like no one's business. There's protein in the mascara that helps build up stripped down lashes, which means over time my lashes will look fuller and healthier when they're bare anyway (something I've learned in hair school). So far, absolutely no complaints.

A couple of weeks ago (right before Vegas actually), as the only freshman, and thus the only student in school on Monday's usually, I've had the opportunity to model in the Taylor Andrew's MAC makeup class a few times. From my experience there, I've discovered I do, after all, rather like wearing lip color. My lips are naturally very dark pink and finding a blend that has enough pigment to cover and not look weird with my natural shade, but also isn't drying to my sensitive lips isn't easy. So, in my quest to start slow with a bright-but-not-too-gaudy pink, I went to one of my favorite makeup lines for subtlty and beauty: Stila. And I found my match. Their two-in-one blush and lipstick cream in Petunia is bright, fun, non-drying but non-greasy and easy to carry around. It was love at first dab.

My last purchase was a dry shampoo. These are all the rage lately, and I wanted to try one that's highly rated. I don't like the smell of baby powder, so talc was out. And some of the reviews I've read of different brands have made dry shampoo seem less than optimal. Stories of residue, weird smells and left over powder in the hair made me a little wary. But I'd heard excellent things about Oscar Blandi's Pronto Dry Shampoo so I bought some of the spray. It's been interesting. I still definitely prefer shampooing my hair in the shower, but on those days when waking up early just aren't an option, this is a decent stand in. There's no sticky residue, and it smells really nice. My only complaint is the left over powder that can be seen in my hair if I don't spend enough time shaking or brushing it out. I suspect this wouldn't be an issue for lighter colored hair, but mine is so dark that the white powder is fairly visible. If I were Marie Antoinette, this wouldn't be a problem, but I'm not, and it is. Not a huge one, but a mild annoyance at least. Not enough to keep me from using it, but probably not as often as I'd like.

So. Phew. Those are my current makeup reviews.

Up on my list of things to try: Lush Bubble Bars and Bath Melts. Specifically some of the new ones they have coming out soon, like the Casbah Bath Melt ("Powdered ginger, coffee, black pepper and cinnamon leaf essential oil give you a warming, spicy bath, with an opaque milky look"). Sounds great to me! I'd also love to try LaVanila The Healthy Deodorant. A 100% natural, clinical strength deodorant for women. Hopefully I'll get around to these beauties sooner rather than later!