Monday, October 22, 2012

makeup inspiration: becca

(image source: becca

time for a little inspirational post. out of all makeup brand promotional pictures, becca cosmetics advertisements are my absolute favorite. the above picture showcases exactly why i love becca girls. the makeup is flawless, from the chiseled cheekbones to the rich berry shade on her lips. i really love her dark hair with this lip color. i feel like it just works, you know?

in case you were wondering, she is wearing the ultimate color gloss in berry twist. if you click the image source above you can see a complete breakdown on what they used on the model. or if you wanted to see it action on a blogger, xiao at messy wands just did a post with it and it looks so great on her.

what is with my bold lip fascination lately? i need to satiate this "need". so many products to choose from! hmm...

Thursday, October 18, 2012

facial sprays

i have noticed a little trend within my beauty stash; facial sprays. i seem to have accumulated a variety of bottles, all with different purposes and promises. i have only been using sprays for about a year but they are addicting! something about a quick mist to the face is so refreshing. here is a breakdown of what i have and my thoughts on each product.


i am about finished with this. this is nice. refreshing and didn't break me out. i don't think it really had any rehydrating properties so if that is what you are looking for i wouldn't recommend it. it is nice as a makeup setting spray though. i don't plan to repurchase, only because i want to try out other products.

i picked this up in new york, mostly out of curiosity. i am a bit of a skeptic with this since it is literally just spring water in a bottle. it is refreshing, but other than that, are there any benefits from this? anyone who loves this i'd love to hear your reasoning. not that i don't like it, but it's just...water.

make sure you read the bottle directions, as i didn't in the beginning and i didn't understand why it wasn't working well. you must spray your face before AND after makeup application for the true effect. this was nice to use during the summer months when my skin is extra oily. i haven't been reaching for it lately as my skin has gone into dry mode due to the cold weather change.

i also bought this in new york and have only used it once so i can't give any concrete opinions on it. i was going to get the small bottle but i figured it was a better deal to just suck it up and buy the huge one.

so far i like all of my choices, for different reasons and occasions. once i am done with TBS spray i might replace it with a more hydrating version by skindinavia. i think setting sprays aren't a necessary product but they are fun and a luxury for the face :)

what sprays have you tried and enjoyed?

Monday, October 15, 2012


i recently took a trip to new york and during my stay there i ended up taking a couple days away from the big apple to explore the historical city of philadelphia. i am not a huge history buff if i am being honest, but i can respect our country's roots and can say overall i had a pleasant time. it is worth a day trip if you are near the area and want to experience part of our country's origins. some food spots are really great, not to mention the old buildings are stunning and are at every corner you turn.

DSC_7731 DSC_7728 DSC_7732 DSC_7741 DSC_7743 DSC_7746

DSC_7773 DSC_7781 DSC_7783 DSC_7784 DSC_7786 DSC_7789 DSC_7790 DSC_7791 DSC_7792

a few things:

+ the famous love sign! this was in JFK Plaza, aka Love Park. the fountain normally isnt pink, they changed the color for the day for breast cancer awareness.
+ being in philly and a huge foodie, i HAD to try out the philly cheese steak sandwiches (with cheese whiz of course). we tried the two top competitors: pat's king of steaks and geno's. pictured above is pat's, which was my favorite of the two. the meat was juicier and the bread was more flavorful. the cherry peppers were free (and yummy!)
+ the famous rocky steps are picture below the cheese steak. can you believe i have never seen the movie?
+ my favorite part of my philly trip (besides the food i ate) was visiting the eastern state penitentiary. it was fascinating! the surgical light pictured is the actual authentic one used that was left behind due to the bulk
+ the japanese house & garden was closed when we went unfortunately. i bet it would have been really neat inside.
+ if you are ever in philly you MUST try Barbuzzo. i was very skeptical of the place as the menu seemed a bit "healthy" and not very meat lover friendly but every single thing we ate here was so fresh and delicious. highly recommend the goat cheese dishes!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

cargo blush: tonga

cargo's tonga is probably the most famous and popular shade in their blush line up. this is either due to it being such a neutral and easy shade or because it is whispered to be jennifer aniston's go to shade. who knows if the latter is even true. for me, tonga is one of my most used blushes.


think along the lines of nars douceur and tarte exposed (i dont own these shades so i am venturing in the realm of assumption here). a matte and very neutral dusty pink. it is very unimpressive looking in the pan; however on the face it works wonders. it has the ability to uplift the face and naturally sculpt. it works with every look and never looks too harsh or jarring. it is extremely easy to wear and fool proof to apply.


i know i sound like a broken record with these cargo texture run downs but i can hardly complain or express enough on how great the texture is. never chalky and always easy to blend. this shade is especially easy to apply and wear because the shade is so neutral and natural looking.

from left to right: mac melba, cargo tonga, mac tenderling. tonga is quite a pink toned neutral. tenderling is much more beige and melba is much more peach.


shades like tonga are an absolute staple to have in your makeup arsenal. it goes with every look, is a universally flattering shade across all skin tones, and is easy to quickly apply and get out the door. if you already have similar shades you would be fine to pass in buying this, unless of course you want better texture from your blush. those who dont wear blush but are looking to start would benefit greatly with this shade as their first. those who like no nonsense application in their blush would also enjoy tonga. this is my most used shade in my cargo collection. i highly recommend it.

almost done with the cargo blush collection posts! until next time when i talk about my final shade: catalina...

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

008 items i'm lusting over

oct 12 wishlist

i must say, this current wishlist i have surprises me because most of what i have been lusting over is lip products. i admit out of all my makeup items, lip items are the number one product i neglect the most. but lately i have been lusting like mad over lipsticks. not just any lipsticks...but bold lipsticks! unheard of! i have been gravitating to the same two color families: deep vampy plums and orange based reds.

for deep plums: tom ford private blend lipstick in black orchid, burberry blueberry lip mist, and ysl glossy stain #1. black orchid looks so luxurious and so perfect to wear in multiple ways (stain, full on, with gloss). i absolutely love burberry's lip mist formula making blueberry all the more desirable. as for ysl glossy stains, i am intrigued by the concept and the color looks so amazing.

as for orangey reds, tom ford wild ginger and nars heat wave caught my eye. something about the fiery bright shade really makes me happy. and i envision wearing it with all black clothing and dark sunglasses. i have tried on nars heat wave and i really liked how it looked on.

wearing nars heat wave
as for the rest of my lusted after items, i have been really interested in skincare. i desperately want to try out dermalogica's mild cream exfoliant as i hear its effect on the skin is amazing. i also have been wanting to try dr. brandt's vacuum cleaner as i am curious to see if it would help with the pesky pores on my nose and inner cheeks.

there are also a few things i want to pick up during the sephora sale (clarisonic brush heads, murad t-zone refining gel, dior black-tie plum addict gloss) but i am unsure of what my final decisions will end up being. so much to choose from!

what is on your current wishlist?

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

cargo blush: lyon

cargo lyon was one of the first shades i picked up and added to my collection. i must admit that when i first bought it, i did so blindly online. sephora was liquidating all of cargo's products and this was one of the only shades left in stock so i bought it on a whim. luckily lyon ended up being a shade i truly enjoy to wear.


lyon is a matte muted rosy plum. in the pan it looks much darker than how it wears on my skin. the color is such a soft rosy shade so it is very easy to wear. you don't need much product to make it show up, i have been using this shade since i first started blogging (over 2 years) and it doesn't even have a slight dip in the pan!


no different than the rest of cargo's line: very soft and easy to blend. even being a darker shade than what most are used to, lyon is surprisingly easy to apply. i dont have to be careful when i apply this shade.

from left to right: nars mounia, cargo lyon, cargo mendocino, nars crazed, nars sin.

lyon is a much more muted color compared to the rest of my brighter berry family of blushes. it is definitely a red based plum. it is quite rosy despite being such a soft shade. it is very flattering.


lyon is a shade i reach for most often in the fall. i tend to love wearing it with plummy or grey eye looks as well as black clothing. i recently went to new york for over a week and i wore this shade the entire trip! i couldnt stop wearing it, it was so flattering for this time of year and it went with most of my outfits. i think this shade would flatter all skin tones as it is pigmented enough for deep tones and soft enough of a color for pale tones. if you love matte shades and are looking for a flattering fall blush shade with great texture, lyon is a great fit.

until next time when i talk about cargo tonga...

Monday, October 8, 2012

let's talk skincare...


i thought i would take a little break from my cargo blush collection posts (i will finish, do not fret) to talk about my current skincare and a few thoughts on the products. for reference, my skin type is mostly oily but during the colder seasons it tends to get dehydrated. it is also prone to slight breakouts.

i bought the normal version, there is also a sensitive version as well. in short, i do not like this cleanser. it smells like chemicals, it doesnt clean thoroughly enough, and worst of all it broke me out. the only merits i can attest to this cleanser is that it is gentle and it does not over strip my skin. i dont understand the following this cleanser has since i think other brands have much better offerings if gentle cleansing is what you are looking for.

MARIO BADESCU DRYING LOTION(aka the extremely faded and unidentifiable small bottle)
i have had this for quite some time. when i first bought this it worked great on all types of blemishes but sadly this is one of those products that if i use it frequently my skin gets used to it and it wont be as potent. my skin now only responds to this on more cystic acne rather than whiteheads or blackheads. i tried using this on the breakouts on my chin and to vacuum out my pores on my nose but it had absolutely no effect. i did have a small cyst on my forehead recently and this helped shrink it down. the smell is quite strong, a potent alcohol, so be cautious if that is bothersome to you.

i must admit i was pretty skeptical of this contraption when i bought it. but i do enjoy it. im not sure if i believe it is a miracle worker, but i do feel like my cleansing routine has improved immensely. i love using this with foaming cleansers.

holy grail for me. i really tried to live without this to see if it was even making a difference to my skin and boy i am paying for it. without using this my chin and nose are so congested and if i breakout nothing makes it go away as fast as when i use this. it is so great at preventing future spots and for making current ones disappear on me. i must have this at all times or else my skin goes berserk.

recently bought this and i am really loving it. it cleans so thoroughly and you need less than a pea size to get a rich lathering foam. it smells very pleasant, like cotton. the only thing i have a problem with is it gives my skin that squeaky clean almost over stripped feeling. i think my skin can only handle using this once a day and in the winter i know for certain i will need a richer moisturizer to compensate. but i think its clarifying properties surpass this con; my skin feels purged of all the crap that accumulates on my skin throughout the day after using this.

i picked up a few bits and bobs in new york recently, ill be sure to share it with you all in an upcoming post. what skincare products are you enjoying lately? i'd love to hear your input, skincare is such a fun topic for discussion.