Empties #3 : Makeup

More and more empties! This, in particular, is a round up of makeup items that I’ve thoroughly finished up, along with my thoughts and whether I am willing to repurchase ’em. You know the drill by now, and yet I still preface these posts.

God knows.

Makeup tends to be my kryptonite when it comes to empties as it is really tough for a makeup addict like me to actually use a product constantly until it is completely done. Hence, majority of the products mentioned are my makeup essentials and are always in my makeup routine, regardless what eye or face look I end up going for that day.

My number one essential is of course, BROWS.

The one thing I cannot leave the house without doing are my brows, which sadly are non-existent. Therefore, I am not only very picky with brow products, but I tend to use them up quite quickly.

 

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Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Brow Colour, S$30

Eyebrow pens are my favourite type of eyebrow product. To me, they are better than pencil, powder and pomade. They can mimic the look of hair most realistically, in my opinion. I tend to use them for the front and tail end of my brow, which are my most sparse areas. I draw them on with hairlike strokes and they last all day on me without fading or smudging.

The Stila version in medium has been my go-to for years. I have repurchased many times, but have since then found drugstore dupes that work just as well for half the price. The Etude House Tint My Brow Pen, particularly, is a pretty spot on one.

 

Anastasia Brow Wiz, USD$21

One of the brands that has not made its way to Singapore shores, much to my dismay. Anastasia was all the rage a year ago and the hype died down a bit after other companies started to make their own micro brow products, pomades and liquid lips. We tend to forget that Anastasia was one of the OGs.

I love this brow wiz. I go back and forth with this product because as much as I enjoy using it, I cannot warrant the price tag, with very similar products available at the drugstore. The brow wiz has a tiny nib, making it perfect for creating hairlike strokes on the brows. While it does create the illusion of fuller brows, I think it’s a little TOO pigmented for my taste. I have to consciously use a light hand, for fear of blocky “Instagram” brows. Instead, I prefer its hip younger sister…

 

Urban Decay Brow Beater, S$33

She is the cooler, edgier sister to the brow wiz. The packaging is just stunning. It feels luxe but young. Not mention, the writing doesn’t rub off as easily as the Anastasia one does, so you won’t lose track of your shade. Besides the outward appearance, the product itself is very similar. Retractable, micro fine nib with a handy spoolie at the other end.

To me, the result I get with the Urban Decay is more desirable. The formula is waxier than the brow wiz, doesn’t deposit too much pigment and gives me a more natural looking brow. Only problem with stiffer formulas is that they tend to break off easily, which was what happened with mine. The price hurts my wallet as well. So I didn’t repurchase this one.

 

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Anastasia Clear Brow Gel, USD$22

More brow products! Can you tell I have a problem? This is the coveted brow gel that everyone swears by. It’s so bloody expensive for what it is. The packaging is lovely. I wish all clear brow gels are housed in such an elegant, opaque casing such as this one. It’s weighty and the brush is slightly large-ish, though it doesn’t really matter as you don’t have to be super precise with a clear gel. It holds my brow hairs in place without looking wet or stiff. Plus, my brows stay that way all day.

But is it worth repurchasing? No. Personally, I get comparable results with the Milani Brow Shaping Clear Gel and the Elf Brow and Lash Clear Mascara. Granted the packaging isn’t as amazing, but it does the job.

 

Nudestix Lash & Grow Mascara, S$37

Possibly the best mascara in the world. Ever. I wanna sing love songs to this mascara. That’s how good it is. It lengthens my lashes to the point that they actually look like falsies. You can layer coats without ever getting clumpy. Your lashes just look long, volumized and fluffy. It’s sexual.

Plus, it has peptides and ingredients inside that help your lash grow too. I can definitely attest to the fact that my lashes are so much stronger when I use this compared to other mascaras. Can you tell I love it? My only issue is the price. That is honestly the only reason why I have yet to purchase a third tube. 37 bucks for mascara is painful. I’m definitely repurchasing once I can afford the splurge.

 

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer in ‘Light’, S$19.90

When this concealer finally made its way to Watsons, I literally squealed. I have heard nothing but rave reviews. The coverage is amazing with a thin consistency. However, I found that it looked a little dry under my eyes, despite having eye cream underneath. I felt that the tiny lines under my eyes were more prominent, even though it completely cancelled out my dark circles. I prefer the Maybelline Fit Me concealers instead. They are less heavy duty in terms of coverage, but far more hydrating and blendable. If dark circles aren’t a big issue for you, I suggest switching to the latter.

 

There you have it. Mini reviews of makeup products I’ve gone through. Safe to say, I have a brow addiction. I’m on a mission to use up more products because I can never completely finish up one thing before moving on to another. It’s an awful habit and something I am determined to get better at.

Here’s to more makeup related empties to come!

Slayin’ the 90s like Buffy

The 90s trend has been going strong since last year and the popularity of brown lipsticks, thanks to Kylie Jenner. I have been using brown lipsticks for ages, because I can never let the 90s go. Clinging on to youth for dear life. Personally, I thought that the trend would die. But it is now at its climax with not just 90s makeup trends making a comeback, but also 90s style clothing and fashion.

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I’m all for that. I know that trends come and go but this one is one that refuses to go away. As with everyone else, I love the 90s makeup look. There are several that were popular within the decade. From super model bombshell looks like Cindy Crawford to grungy, undone looks by Winona Ryder, there are many routes you can take with this trend. Personally, I prefer the grungy look; A monochromatic brown smokey eye withbrown lips. Trust me, it looks a lot better than it sounds.

 

Let me walk you through it!

All the products I feature here are super affordable. Even though the trend is going strong in Sephora, you don’t have to break the bank to jump on this one.

 

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Step 1 : Let’s start with the base. Matte skin is what it’s all about. The modern take on the 90s look incorporates extremely luminous skin. But I want to pay homage to the original. To prevent yourself from looking overdone or cakey, pair your favourite matte foundation with a moisturising primer. The L’oreal 24hr Infallible foundation (£8) is great for a high coverage, flawless finish. Underneath, I’ve used the Nivea Men After Shave Balm (S$9.95) in the ‘sensitive‘ version. Made famous by YouTube as the perfect drugstore primer thanks to glycerin as a main ingredient, which helps foundation stick to it and last all day.

Step 2 : Conceal any imperfections you want to conceal and prime the lids. I don’t focus too much on have an absolutely perfect canvas. I used the Maybelline Instant Age Rewind concealer (S$18.90) in ‘Light‘. I don’t bother concealing my dark circles too much or my pigmentation because this makeup embraces imperfection.

Step 3 : Do your brows as per usual! Brows in the 90s are either big and unkempt or thin and over plucked. I suggest defining your natural brow slightly and combing it through with a brow gel to great bushiness and that textured appearance. I used the Missha Perfect Brow Styler (S$8.90) in ‘Dark Brown’ and Milani Brow Gel (S$10).

 

 

Step 4 : Let’s start with the colour! Red eyeshadow would be ideal, but it’s perfectly fine if you don’t have any. I’ve opted for a blush instead. This bright red blush is the CATRICE Defining Blush (S$6.90) in ‘I’m a Survivor‘ from a limited edition collection. But any bright red blush will do. Pack it on the mobile lid and all the way to the crease. Start with a light hand and build the colour slowly. Bring the colour with the same brush underneath the waterline, messily.

 

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Step 5 : Grab a rusty brown shade. I chose a satin reddish brown colour from Moonshot in ‘Russet‘ (S$16) and a fluffy crease brush. Blend the edges of the red with the brown into the crease, putting the most product on the outer V of the eye. Blend the same colour under the eye with the same brush. Don’t be afraid to bring the colour lower than you are used to. If you are starting to look like a red-eyed panda, you are doing it right!

Step 6 : Line your upper lash line with a dark brown or a purplish kohl liner. Here, I used the KIKO eyeliner (£5.90) in ‘Dark Tide‘. Before it sets, use a pencil brush and dip it in a deep burgundy eyeshadow. This is from the Wet n WildComfort Zone‘ eye palette in ‘Definer‘. Smudge the line out with this colour and go on the waterline as well to smoke it out. The darker the better!

 

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Step 7 : Mascara. LOAD IT UP!! Go crazy. Top and bottom lashes. Use a jet black formula that is very volumizing like this Sephora Lash Plumper (S$22) in ‘Ultra Black‘.

 

 

Step 8 : Finish up the face by adding definition with bronzer and colour with blush. I used the CATRICE Sun Glow Matt Bronzer (S$6.90) in ‘Deep Bronze‘ at the hollows of my cheeks to enhance the bonze structure. This, I feel is crucial to the look as it really adds dimension. Then I topped the cheeks off with KIKO Soft Touch Blush (US$3.90) in ‘Mauve‘, a perfect muted colour that matches the eyes perfectly. Make sure to do a light dusting as cheek products were not a big focus in 90s makeup. You can even skip this step, if you’re in a pinch.

 

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Step 9 : Last but certainly not least, complete the look with the perfect brown lipstick. Pick a shade that goes well with your skin colour. I picked shades that have reddish undertones within the brown so that it keeps my face from being washed out. For a creamier formula that is moisturising and perfect for everyday, I have Maybelline Color Sensational lipstick (S$21.90) in ‘Crazy for Coffee‘. For that super 90s feel, opt for a matte formula with the NYX Liquid Suede Lip Cream (S$15) in ‘Soft-spoken‘. A stunning mauve shade that is slightly cool toned, but incredibly flattering. This is supposedly the cheaper dupe of Kat Von D’s ‘Lolita‘.

Throw on a choker and BOOM! It’s as if you time travelled.

 

 

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I’ve been using this look on almost a daily basis, even with regular clothing, that might not be in the 90s style. The grunge look is very versatile, bold and feminine at the time. It’s incredibly easy to execute too.

Try it for yourself and let me know how it turned out for you. Hop on the bandwagon, y’all!

Sexcited about Summer

Here’s a quick one for your weekend reading pleasure!

I always get so excited around this time of the year because all the major makeup brands are coming up with new collections for Summer. We get sneak peeks on new products that are made for hot summery weather. It’s all about glowing, bronzed skin in a lightweight formula. This is what I’m ALL ABOUT!!

As usual, the US has a head start to all the cool product launches. I’m praying that Singapore isn’t too far behind, so I’m thinking these might launch in June 2016. If it isn’t launched by then, most probably it isn’t launching at all in Asia. Which would be a damn shame. (Can you tell I’m still bitter about Too Faced Hangover X Primer not being launched here?)

I’ve been stalking websites and I’ve already made a small list of products I’m dying to see in person and try out. I thought I would just share with you my list really quickly as a small appetiser, to get your appetite going and peak your interest at some future launches.

 

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1. Tarte Double Duty Beauty Empowered Hybrid Gel Foundation (US$39)

Lightweight gel formula with medium buildable coverage that can last through the Summer heat. It boasts bioploymer filling spheres to help reduce the look of fines lines and pores along with hyaluronic acid to provide moisturization. It’s oil-free and also has vitamin C and Barley extract for extra goodness. Though I am more interested in the gel formulation than anything else. It sounds perfect for oily skin gals like me, who still appreciate a little bit of hydration. It’s cooling with a soft rose scent to boot! Ticks all the boxes.

 

2. Too Faced Sweet Peach Eyeshadow Collection, Limited Edition (US$49)

Umm, can we just take a moment for this gorgeous palette? Though I am not a fan of large palettes as I find them rather bulky to travel with, and the choice of shadows tend to be quite overwhelming for a quick morning routine, I feel like I might need this palette just for the beautiful range of warm eyeshadows. Due to my yellow undertones, warm shadows tend to look most flattering on me and I am loving the reddish orange hues of this palette. Plus, it smells like PEACHES! Sadly this is limited edition so I’ll definitely be swiping one as soon as it launches.

 

3. Urban Decay Beached Bronzer (US$28)

I live and die for bronzer. My pale yellow skin has the tendency to look sallow and sickly, so I always find that bronzer helps to give my face warmth whilst defining my features. I never leave the house without it! While I have my tried and true NARS Laguna, the Urban Decay new offering is calling my name. From it’s palm tree packaging to the gorgeous matte brown shade, I am finding it hard to resist the temptation. I feel like whipping this out on a beach holiday and putting this on, just might transport me there (in my head).

 

4. Nudestix Intense Matte Lip + Cheek Pencil (US$24)

Y’all know I’m a huge fan of Nudestix for their mascara and lip products. So when I found out that they will be releasing matte versions of their lip pencils, I was ecstatic! The NARS Velvet Lip Pencils have been my favourite formulas, though I find them quite drying at times. I have high hopes for the Nudestix formulas since they are made for both cheek and lips. The range of colours are stunning with great nude shades and incredible brights. From the swatches online, I am eager to get my hands on this one for an easy, chic matte lip.

 

5. Naked Skin One and Done Hybrid Complexion Perfector (US$34)

Another complexion product! They are truly my biggest weakness. I can’t get enough of them. Probably because I am always on the road to flawless-looking skin. It’s my biggest insecurity and something I obsess about constantly. This tinted moisturizer sounds amazing for oily, combination skin girls like me. With blurring technology and light reflecting spheres, it’s supposed to help you achieve a more perfected looking skin whilst still maintaining the look of “real skin”. The weightless yet long-lasting formula is perfect for daily use and claims to reduce the look of pores. Can we get a “HELL YES“?

 

Needless to say, the excitement is real! The Spring/Summer season has some of my favourite launches to date as it suits Singapore’s hot, humid weather. This, of course, is just the tip of the iceberg. This only covers mostly US brands that are sold at Sephora. There are still launches from Asian brands as well as the drugstore. I could really sit here for hours just researching and talking about this. However, these are just a few that I’m looking out for and can’t wait to try out.

Let me know what launches you guys are hyped about!

 

Bad(ass) is the new Black

Before you read this post, you might want to put on some rap music so that you can truly get into the spirit of things. Might I suggest some A$AP Rocky or Kendrick Lamar, who are both incredible rappers and have the ability to make me feel like I have “swag” even though I depressingly lack it.

I have mentioned once before that I love observing trends as they play out around the world. With YouTube and Instagram, it’s increasingly easy for us to catch on to trends because we will undoubtedly see them everywhere. *cough*adidas superstars*cough*

The ones we have been noticing lately, more so in the wide world of social media than in the actual streets of Singapore, are funky hairstyles. Your hair can be considered a fashion accessory as it is up to you how you would want it to be styled and it’s amazing what different hairstyles can bring to one’s own distinct look. Right now, the Royal Family (a famous New Zealand Dance group) are the epitome of the current trendy hairstyles girls are adorning. The essence of these hair looks is complete and utter disregard for subtlety and embrace your bad self.

Essentially achieving a “badass” look.

 

 

The first would be BRAIDS.

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Braids are a popular hairstyle since the dawn of time. But in terms of trends, the type of braiding and the type of makeup and styling that goes around these braids are equally important. Kylie Jenner has made this trend extremely popular, naturally. The world is absolutely obsessed with Kylie and are scrambling to emulate her style. The braids we are talking about are not childish pigtail braids but tight French or Dutch braids that start from the scalp all way down, creating two or more neat braids. The tighter the braid, the better. We are not going for the messy look here.

This look is edgy, clean and mean. Popular Instagram girls tend to pair this hairstyle with tight, sporty outfits and rather “full-on” makeup. In particular, over drawn lips coated in a 90s brown lipstick and thick, crisp brows. To be honest, it gives me major “chola” vibes and no one is going to want to mess with you.

 

The second look I have noticed is the DOUBLE BUNS.

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Think Chun Li from Street Fighters and you have an accurate depiction of what your hair needs to look like. You want to separate your hair into two pigtails and then tie each them into a bun. The messier the better. This look is such a throwback to the 90s when pop stars like Gwen Stefani and TLC would don this hairstyle with bindis on their foreheads. It’s interesting how this style has been resurrected and updated. Once again, the makeup needs to make a statement with this look to avoid looking too “cute”. The aim is ‘quirky and dangerous‘. Pair this with bold outfits in loud prints and thick, black winged eyeliner. Throw on a bold lipstick and you are good to go.

These looks are fun to try if you ever feel like experimenting with something new. It is certainly more popular in the US and more western countries but with Kylie Jenner paving the way, many more are jumping on this bandwagon.

An honorable mention needs to be made to the GREY HAIR trend that is still going strong in 2016 and is much more noticeable in Singapore. The pastel hair craze has given way to a grey haired one. Even if it isn’t specifically grey, ashy hair colours are becoming the more popular choice. We have certainly noticed a lot more silver-haired boys and girls in town, usually mistaking them for an elderly person from behind and then being proven otherwise when they turn around.

I suggest watching CL’s music video for her song “Hello B*tches” because it embodies this trend and is a good example literally all the trends I spoke off and more!

With all these looks, the key is to look like a BADASS BITCH. And I have to say, I’m diggin’ it.

 

 

 

Model : Diyanah Mustapha (@diyanahm)

Makeup : Hanan Alhaddad (@thebroadwalk)