Won: Misikko "Hana" Flat Iron, Walgreens PSA & OOTD

I have been a very lucky girl lately. I never win anything, but I guess my luck has changed because a couple of weeks ago I was the winner of a MISIKKO "hana" flat iron in a giveaway hosted by the gorgeous Tiffany over at Big Hair Bigger Lashes. Thank you Tiffany and MISIKKO for such a wonderful giveaway!

The best part? It's PINK!!!

It also came with this wonderful PINK travel case as well as a satin hair serum and a heat resistant mat that you can place your hot styling tools on!

I used it today really quickly just to run through a couple of pieces of my hair and it really worked well. I'm going to wait to give a full review until I can use it on freshly washed hair to style it.  I love that the flat iron has a temperature adjustment so you can choose how hot it is.  I also love how lightweight it is. It feels lighter than my CHI.  For comparison, here is the hana and the CHI side by side.

I just love how cute it is!  I think the travel pouch it came with will be extra handy too.  Thank you again for such a generous giveaway...and if you want to see some gorgeous makeup looks, including a gorgeous smokey eye, make sure to check out Tiffany's blog. More to come on this flatiron. 

Today I stopped by at Walgreens after work because I needed to pick up a few things.  PSA to all: Walgreens is buy one get one half off on all L'Oreal and Neutrogena products.  I had to take advantage and get some of my staple products which included:

I picked up two cans of L'Oreal Sublime Bronze airbrush self tanner because it's about $10 a can, so when I can save on this I try to!

I picked up another bottle of my favorite moisturizer, Neutrogena for sensitive skin:

I like to buy on sale, so oftentimes my bathroom cabinets end up having a stock pile of products:

Oh how I heart self tanner!

I also took a risk and bought another Neutrogena product: the SPF 25 Eye Brightening Pen.  I refused to spend the money on the YSL Touche Eclat so thought this might be a nice $8.99 alternative.

I swatched it and it's more like a concealer than a highlighter, but I like it for the under-eye area (I used a bit under my eyes when I got home just to experiment with it.) I'll apply it on a fresh face tomorrow.

I really like the packaging of this product. I think it looks sleek and expensive. More to come on how I like this for the under-eye area.  I typically don't have dark circles but I do like to brighten the eye area because it really makes you look awake and fresh (especially in the morning when most of us need it!)


There is the product not rubbed in at all.  

There it is with flash.

and rubbed in:

I also have an OOTD to share before I go. I think I wore this on Tuesday? All black...what I'm trying to get away from! LOL:

Skirt-Ann Taylor; Top-Costa Blanca; Cardigan- Express; Shoes- Michael Kors; Necklace- NYLightMetals on Etsy.

I will announce my contest winner tomorrow...probably in the later afternoon or evening.



April Favorites and INs & OUTs

Today I thought I'd share my April favorites- products I've been using regularly and loving! These posts are always hard for me because I tend to be a product devotee and don't branch out too often, but lately I have been trying a few new products so I thought I could post these as my April faves.

Benefit Cosmetics Eye Bright Pencil

OPI Lucky Lucky Lavender

essie 2010 The Resort Collection, Splash of Grenadine

4. Aveda Smooth Infusion Styling Cream

5.  MAC Eyeshadow in "Blanc Type"- perfect for all over the eye to brighten it up without being chalky or too white

6.  Kiehl's Avocado Eye Cream- I've only been using this for the past week but LOVE IT! So moisturizing and feels great to put on every night- not greasy at all either and very rich!
Kiehl's Eye Care - Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado 14ml/0.5oz

7.  MAC "Bare Study" Paint Pot- neutral, soft, pretty, shimmery- the perfect product to add a little oomph without needing to pack on eyeshadow

9.  Seche Vite Topcoat- do you want perfect, shiny, fast-drying nails? This is your best friend!
Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat .5 fl oz (15 ml)

10. Pureology Shampoo- Nanoworks and Essential Repair- I don't think I can ever go back to sulfate shampoos after this!  These shampoos make hair feel soft, smooth and silky without weighing it down!
Pureology Antifade Complex Essential Repair Shampoo 10.1 oz

11.  L'Oreal Ever Strong  Deep Conditioning Mask- love this deep conditioner. Makes hair feel super moisturized and soft

and, coming up for May, this is what I foresee for myself:

  • Open-Toe Shoes
  • Skirts and dresses
  • Pretty floral prints
  • Purple everywhere- clothes, home decor, nails!
  • Long necklaces, Key charms on necklaces
  • Resses Peanut Butter Cups
  • Self-tanner- bring on the summer glow!
  • Clear gloss- it's all I need!
  • Taking vitamins- trying to do this more often
  •  Tights under everything (yay for warmer weather)
  • Picking at my cuticles- has GOT to stop!
  • Not working out- need to get back on track
  • Wearing black all of the time (need to wear more color!)...says the girl who just wore all black 2 days in a row)
  • Sugar addiction (ugh...don't even get me started...see peanut butter cups, above)
  • Hurty feet- I just got new insoles and gel pads for all of my heels!

What are your April favorites? Link me to your blog if you've done them or post them below!



Louis Vuitton Models Without Makeup- What Do You Think?

A picture of Louis Vuitton's model line-up for the Fall/Winter 2010 show was recently leaked online and caused an uproar of men (and maybe some women) posting about how awful some of these models looked (without makeup) and commenting on how unattractive some of them were, in general.

(click to enlarge- source: Jezebel)

Note that Victoria's Secret models Alessandra Ambrosio and Adriana Lima are included in the lineup, as well as Elle Macpherson.  I'm really confused why some men seem to think these models are completely unattractive.  Most women are lucky if they look fabulous without a touch of makeup, and I think a lot of these models do fall into that category of still looking quite cute with no makeup on and their hair pulled back.

Like the article stated, runway and high fashion models tend to go against the norms of what men find attractive and beautiful.  

An excerpt from the article:

Modeling is just one of the many areas of the fashion industry that does not give much consideration to men and their alleged needs. It is not created or intended to serve men's tastes. What these men are noticing is merely fashion's long-established tendency to find and glorify the most unusual good looks, rather than the interchangeably pretty, thin-but-curvy, pneumatic appearances that are validated by beer ads and Maxim throughout the West. 

Most men aren't married to those "Maxim" type women (and even they, without makeup and airbrushing aren't without flaws.)  It makes me wonder what the wives or girlfriends of the men making the mean-spirited comments about these models look like in the morning with no makeup on.  I know I sure don't look fantastic when I go to bed at night with my makeup washed off, proactive mask dotted onto any blemishes, and eye cream under my eyes (but hey, beautifying overnight is important for a glow-y morning so sometimes looking like a Halloween monster before bed is necessary- at least it's dark!)

The same issue can be seen on shows like America's Next Top Model where a lot of men (and women) don't find the models  attractive, by conventional standards. You'll notice though that the top-paid models like Victoria's Secret Models and the most popular runway models do tend to be more conventionally (if not exotically) beautiful than some of the lesser-known high fashion and runway models who can be a little quirkier or unique-looking.

Here are my questions for you:

1.  Is it ridiculous for men to criticize how women look when they aren't wearing any makeup? Are men holding women to a crazy standard?  (think of all of the men that tell their wives or girlfriends that "they prefer them without makeup"...are these the same men trashing these models?)

2.  What do you think about conventional versus non-conventional beauty? Do you find sort of unique looking models to be inspiring or interesting, or do their looks not appeal to you?

3. There seems to be this obsession with "celebrities caught without makeup" type photos...why do you think that is? Is it because it makes us feel better about ourselves, or do people just love to trash someone the moment they aren't styled and made-up the way they usually are?

Share your thoughts and comments below! Thank you for reading!

Before I go, here is a vacation picture of model Alessandra Ambrosio, looking naturally gorgeous:



Requested: My Daily EyeMakeUp & An OOTD

This is a much-requested post so I'm so happy I finally remembered to bring my camera into the bathroom with me where I get ready in the morning.

This is my daily "eye makeup" routine, step by step.  

My first step is to apply MAC's studio finish concealer on my lids, and then powder my entire face with MAC's Studio Fix foundation (a powder.) I didn't show this step. I love using concealer on my lids. It evens them out and is a perfect base for everything.

OK, here we go:

1.  Curl eyelashes- Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler

2. Apply Benefit's "Eye Bright" pencil (this pic shows it un-blended, I blend it out using my finger)

3.  Use Bobbi Brown Gel Liner in "Black Mauve" to line top lids- get as close to your lash line as possible (kind of like tightlining, but not exactly). I use a thin eyeliner brush (shown) or sometimes an angled liner brush.

4.  Apply MAC's "Blanc Type" eyeshadow to entire lid and brow bone (I just like to use this as a base and to brighten the entire lid)

5.  Apply MAC's "Brun" eyeshadow to my lower lash line with a slanted eyeliner brush. This gives a precise line. If you use too much, use a Q-tip to whittle it down a bit (make a thinner line)

 6. Then, I use Anastasia of Beverly Hill's brow powder in "medium ash" to fill in my brows (I also have the pencil and use that on occasion too. I like both products) I also apply Maybelline's clear lash gel to my brows to keep them in place (because otherwise, they look "absolutely tragic" as one of my lovely commenters pointed out)

7.  I then apply L'Oreal's Volume Collagen Mascara to my lashes (I'll also use DiorShow when I feel like it)

and here is the result (sorry some of the pics...okay, most of them, are really really bad, but I hope they give you an idea of what I do)

So there it is :) Pretty simple! As you all know, I very rarely wear eyeshadow during the day.  I sometimes will use MAC's Paintpot in "Bare Study" on my lids, but I didn't today.  I think this is such a simple everyday look and it takes no time at all. Last night I watched a couple of minutes of that show "Jersylicious" and boy do those girls wear a TON of eyemakeup (and makeup in general.) I've had comments on my blog before that say I wear "too much makeup" and that my "eyemakeup is too heavy" which always shocks me because unless you're comparing me to someone who wears no eyemakeup at all, I think I keep it pretty simple.  But hey, to each their own!

***I forgot to add that I use a black liner on my waterline. I use Bonne Bell's "Black Ink" liner***Lining the waterline makes eyes a little more intense.

Here is what I wore today: My new J.Crew ruffle top from my weekend haul, my Express Editor pants, a Charlotte Russe open-face cardigan, Forever 21 skinny black belt and Aldo shoes.

I really liked this outfit. It was comfy and chic...though I did have to run an errand at lunch and it was SO hot outside. Not so great when you're wearing a silk top!

Hope you had a happy Monday!  If you have any questions about my eye makeup routine, please post them below.  A reminder that I also have a Formspring at http://www.formspring.me/veronabrit, if you ever have a random question.

What's your daily eye makeup look?


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