There was once a time, long ago, when I — desperate to maintain a yearlong tan — used bronzer made for African-Americans. I finally figured out that wasn’t the most “natural”-looking way to go, and have tried many bronzers since, but didn’t find the perfect one until now. LORAC’s bronzer, first of all, comes in a big ass compact, that way when you swirl your brush in the color it’s more distributed among the bristles, leading to a more even application. The color is incredibly warm and natural, giving just the right amount of “Did she just get back from Mexico?” glow, and is never garishly orange or “dirty” looking. While I wish I had just gotten back from Mexico, this is the next best thing — for my skin anyway. [$28, Sephora]
Like bold red lipstick, cat-eye liner is one makeup trick that is less of a trend and more of a lifestyle. It’s always en vogue, and those who embrace it do so with wild abandon. It’s no coincidence that nearly all of my style icons, the women past and present that I consistently look to for guidance (or whatever, I’m shallow), have been known to boast the eternally sexy black flick. There was no drought of eye-catching makeup looks at this year’s Golden Globes, some good, others shameful, but there’s only one that was so on-point that I said to myself, Never again will I wear my cat-eye liner is a manner that is not precisely this one.
That show-stopping pair of eyes belonged to Angelina Jolie, who has long been my eye makeup and otherwise idole supreme (see also: deity, muse, most beautiful praying mantis-woman to ever walk the earth). Never — never— before, in all my days, have I bore witness to such exquisitely blended, gorgeously defined black liner. Imagine my dismay when, come the day after the awards, Angelina’s makeup artist had yet to come forward with the tools and technique used to acquire this most enviable look. Luckily, I have the all-abiding patience and focus of a savant, which I put to good use by settling myself in front of the mirror in a series of trial and error. Forty-five minutes, three brushes, and one handful of spilled kohl later, and what do I have to show for it? Only the most gorgeous eyeliner ever, of course, and the goodwill to pass it on.
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Highlighter is one of those makeup products that sounded kind of like BS to me, like lip gloss primer. Really? Do I really need this? Then a makeup artist at a MAC counter put some sparkly highlighter on me and — ta-da! — I had cheekbones for the first time in my life. As someone with very round features who suffered from the nickname Cabbage Patch Kid as a child, I can’t believe I went so long without illuminating the (few) angles in my face with a highlighter. I also wish I had started using highlighter years earlier to make my skin look more “alive” during winter months instead of slogging onward through cadaver-dom. So I am happy to report that Benefit Cosmetic’s Watt’s Up highlighter is quite pretty and is a bit more natural-looking than my sparkly MAC highlighter. Keep reading »
Don’t let sparkles be just for New Year’s Eve. Bat your eyes all year long with Sonia Kashuk for Target’s “Pretty In Pink” eye palette. The powders are metallic, but not glittery, in pinkish hues that scream “pretty,” not “drag queen.” (Not that there’s anything wrong with drag queens! It’s just not an office look for most of us.) The best part of this palette is Sonia Kashuk will donate 15 percent of each product purchased to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Charitable giving? That’s truly beautiful.
Huge pores. A lot of us have got ‘em, but they’re not always something we want share with the world. Thank the beauty gods for Benefit’s POREfessional, a translucent balm that minimizes the appearance of pores. Gently rub it over your T-zone, on your chin, your cheeks, and anywhere else where you’d love to see smoother skin. POREfessional is oil-free and goes on under makeup without any fuss. You’ll never be crying, “Oh, poor me, my pores!” again!
When Sephora sent me their Moonshadow Baked Eye Palette to test, I was concerned. First of all, there’s lots of sparkles. As much as I love a sparkly highlighter to fake cheekbones in my big ol’ chipmunk cheeks, I stopped wearing glitter on my eyes around, oh, age 17. Sparkly-ness is not something I look for in an eyeshadow. This picture from Sephora.com doesn’t accurately portray just how glittery these shadows are, but trust me, they’re shimmery.
Second of all, that cobalt blue shadow scared the crap out of me. Keep reading »
You know what we miss the most about Jane magazine (other than all of Jane magazine)? The makeunders. The mag would pull some woman off the street, snatch the black eyeliner out of her hands, and do her up in a more subtle makeup look using fewer products. Now the ladies of xoJane.com, where editor Jane Pratt has landed, have gifted Sammi Giancola from “Jersey Shore” a makeunder and day-um girl. Sammi’s always been really pretty, but her xoJane makeunder really lets her natural beauty shine through. The makeup artist hired by xoJane only used five beauty products and took no longer than five minutes to make her up. I like! Lay off the tanning beds and flatirons for awhile, Sammi, pretty please? [xoJane] Keep reading »
The only thing more exciting than amazing holiday gifts is amazing holiday parties. There’s something about these late-December days (and nights, and early mornings) that puts everyone in a good mood. Even if you fancy yourself more of a Scrooge, I dare you to keep trying to suppress that contagious joy. Go ahead, pour a glass of champagne — Christmas only comes once a year, so you might as well let loose. These holiday beauty trinkets will keep you looking and feeling plenty festive, all the way through January 1st.