Sunday, September 15, 2013

Downtown Haul: False Eyelashes

Okay. So while I'm waiting for the upload of my cousin dancing to 'Gimme Gimme', I think I should just probably share to you this mini haul of mine today.

Today after work, I decided to visit Shoe Earth near Deco's at the Downtown Area to look for some falsies. It's close to where I ride the jeepneys anyway so it's not really such a drag. FYI, Shoe Earth is actually a really cool and favorite place of mine since High School. You'll find a lot of cool stuff there! Shoes on the ground floor and all kinds of things on the 2nd floor - from pencils to phone cases, from necklaces to eye wear, from scrunchies to false eyelashes

This is a great place for someone who is saving money (and/or maybe broke), a student and a practical shopper. Don't get me wrong, I want to get my hands on brands the likes of Ardell, Benefit, MAC and Shu Uemura falsies... but I'd like be practical right now. If there's a cheaper alternative, I'd try that first.

A huge pile of eyelash goodness was waiting for me! I was so happy I went there after a looooong time. Stacks of falsies organized according to length and color! Oh gosh, so much make up looks were flooding on my mind while I was looking at the pile. There were colored glittery ones - perfect for the upcoming Masskara Festival. Ones with gems, full-on ones perfect for a goth look on Halloween. Name any occasion - weddings, debuts, fashion shows, ones to wear for a date, Christmas, anything! - they would have it there. I took my time soaking in all the good stuff. Of course you have to be very careful in choosing the ones that have no defects.

Php10.95 each

The ones I chose were simpler.
The first at the top is a medium-length kind with semi-thickness which is perfect for a natural and effortless look. Notice that the hairs were placed on a crisscross manner, imitating the look that our eyelashes naturally have.

The second one has a shorter length. Remember that in putting false eyelashes, you also have to consider the size of the eye and the length of the lashes. This is great for someone who has short-length lashes but want to give it a thicker look.

First one: Php24.75
Second one: Php 32.95

The first set is for the bottom lashes, which is great when you're going for that wide-eyed look. Putting falsies at the bottom opens up your eyes. You would know that it's for the bottom lashes because the hairs are curving downwards and the length of the hairs are much shorter. This one I liked in particular because the hairs are getting thicker as it goes toward the outer corner - very genius, very chic! 

The last one has a dramatic flair into it. Perfect for a full-on eye. Like maybe a look I'm planning to do on a Halloween - gothic. ;)

I bought all of this (together with a hair clamp) for a total of Php82.75 only! It's crazy, right? Think of how much money you could save by choosing to shop there. The quality is not bad for the price as well ( great - if not better - than those of the ones we can find at malls). So go get some before they run out! ;)

P.S.: As much as possible, I suggest you to invest on a good quality adhesive though. Duo glue is a great brand. You can pre-order from the Carefree Shopper for only Php550.00. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

How To: "Lazy Day" Make-up Routine

And I'm back! :)
I've been sick and busy with work for the whole month of August so you must forgive me for not posting anything.

Anyway, this look is my go-to look for the whole month.

I'm sure all of us had those days where you're just not on the mood to do anything. Particularly those days where you're just so tired and exhausted. But you still have work to do anyway and you want to look presentable so you dig your kit for tools that might help you achieve that.

Well, here's a quick and easy way for a presentable face.

1. I don't apply foundation for this routine so I just use Estee Lauder's DayWear Creme all over my face on a thin layer. This formula is great for normal to combination skin - like mine. It also has an "Advanced Multi-Protection Anti-Oxidant" formula and Broad Spectrum SPF15 - which is a plus for me since I work on the field and consistently exposing my face to the harsh rays of the sun. Much to my dismay, my Aunt only sent me this and I don't know where to purchase this product again here in Bacolod. :(

2. I use MAC's brow set in Beguile when grooming my eyebrows. I bought it from Carefree Shopper for only Php950.

3. Using EcoTools smudge brush (which I purchased also from Carefree Shopper but I forgot the price,
 sorry!), I apply Urban Decay's Naked 2 palette in Busted and Blackout on my lid close to the roots. You can get this from Carefree Shopper for Php2,650 or from The Makeup Junkie for a cheaper price!

4. Give your lashes a good curl using Shu Uemura's eyelash curler and apply Estee Lauder's Sumptuous Bold Volume Lifting Mascara in Black, working from root to tip. Sadly, I don't know where to purchase this product here in Bacolod since I only got it from my Aunt. But if you know where to get it here in Bacolod or anywhere in the Philippines, please feel free to share it on the comments section below! :)

5. Using EcoTools blush brush, apply MAC's Supernova mineralized blush on the apples of your cheeks for a pinkish glow. Both items can be purchased from the Carefree Shopper but I forgot the price.

6. Lastly, I use MAC's Lipstick in Kinda Sexy which is a great colour! It's a matte nude peachy colour which is great for my taste. ;) You can get this from Carefree Shopper for Php950 and from The Makeup Junkie for Php899.

So that's it! Quick and easy.

As you can see, this picture has all kinds of "lazy" in it - my lazy and messy hair, me being too lazy to ask someone to take a picture of me hence taking a selfie instead - eeeks! - and me being too lazy to pick a decent background than that of our living room. :/

I hope you enjoyed and learned from my "Lazy Day" Make-up Routine! X

P.S.: This picture of me was taken on our living room while waiting for the models to come. Watch out for my blogpost about the BTS of this shoot. I will post the different looks that I did on the models and I might give a tutorial on those so please stay tuned! ;)

Sunday, July 28, 2013

How To: Fresh Look


Get this look!

Mix foundation with moisturizer and blend well.
Conceal areas that need concealing. 
Put powder in the center of your face moving outwards.
Make sure to choose the right color. Blend the products well. The face should be perfect, creating the perfect canvass is the key.

Choose the right color.
Place color in areas that need filling. 
If you have coarse hairs, you might not need to put a lot of product. But if you have sparse hairs, make sure that it looks natural by stamping in the color bit by bit using a small, angled brush. 
If you're contented with how it looks, finish it off by putting an eyebrow gel (tinted or clear depending on the look you want to achieve and on the kind of brows) to keep the hairs in place. Apply gel upward and outwards to achieve that natural look.

This look I made is for a wedding, so I want to give it a fresh look. Not too heavy on the eyes.
Line near the roots of the lashes for a natural look (I used gel liner). Build it up using eye shadow.
Apply a lighter color on the lid and a slightly darker color on the crease. Blend well.
Remember not to apply too much color on the eyes. Little makeup goes a long way.
Curl lashes with your favorite curler. Apply mascara on the roots working towards the ends in a squiggly manner. Apply a peach/white colored liner on your waterline. Finish off the look by applying mascara on the lower lashes.
Put concealer underneath the eyes using your fingers. Finish it off by dabbing a yellow-toned matte powder to lock it in place.

Contour by following the natural shape of your cheekbones (use matte colors). Apply it in all the high points of your face - places where the sun would naturally hit and on the hollows of your face. Blend well.
Put blush on the apples of your cheeks (always on the highest points of the cheeks) working outwards and meeting your contour for a more natural look. 
Highlighter is optional. To achieve a healthy glow, apply the smallest amount on top of your blush and blend it well.

Apply lip balm before you work with your face to give it time to moisturize and sink on your lips.
Choose a color that matches your whole look.
I like to apply it with my fingers, sometimes with a square brush. Here I used a pink toned color underneath a coral color. Blend well.

Makeup Forever foundation
Clean and Clear moisturizer
MAC highlighter and concealer
Urban Decay Naked 2
The Balm Neutral Palette
Nichido eyebrow pencils
Mary Kay eyebrow gel
MAC eyebrow set
The Faceshop eye crayon
Rimmel mascara
Shu Uemura eyelash curler
Estee Lauder blush
Fanny Serrano Two-way Cake foundation
Etude House lipstick
MAC lipstick
EOS lip balm
Covergirl powder
Maybelline gel liner and mascara

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Make-up Essentials

If you live in a city like mine, you can't go outside without wearing one. I live in a tropical country but in my city, we get more sun than rain. The structure of the city itself practically offers very little shade making our skin more susceptible to the harsh UVA and UVB rays of the sun. I can go out to work without wearing any makeup but I always make sure that I don't forget putting on sunscreen.
Banana Boat Ultra Protect Sunscreen Lotion
SM Watsons, 299-499Php
(prices may vary depending on SPF level)
On my body, I use Banana Boat's Ultra Protect Sunscreen Lotion with SPF 80. There are so many brands to choose from, but I chose this particular brand because it's one of Bobbi Brown's favorite brand of sunblocks mentioned on her book, "Beauty Evolution". Also because it is water resistant, contains Aloe Vera and Vitamin E, and is recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation. It feels heavy on the skin that's why I only use it for my body.
Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunblock
SM Watsons, 509.75Php
On my face however, I use Neutrogena's Ultra Sheer Dry-touch Sunblock with SPF 50. It feels very light on the skin and is dermatologist tested while providing superior protection against skin-aging UVA and burning UVB rays. My good friend - Shirley's recommendation is Neutrogena's Clear Face Liquid Lotion Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 55, but I can't find it here in my city.
It's specifically made for the face so I think it's the other best option to buy. Check out her blog, for other skin care product recommendations.

Maybelline Clear Smooth Aqua Gel Foundation
SM Watsons, 350-550Php
(forgot the actual price, sorry!)

My favorite brand for a foundation is always gonna be Max Factor. But for everyday use, I tend to wear light to medium
coverage ones such as Maybelline's Clear Smooth Aqua Gel Foundation. Gel foundations are great for oily skin but the formula is difficult to work with when applying. I'm using my fingers to apply it and I have to blend it very quickly because it dries easily when it gets into the skin.

For Eyebrows.
Don't forget the eyebrows! Eyebrows frame your face. It affects your whole look! You can forget applying your blush and eyeliner but you can't ever forget doing your eyebrows (mascara and lipstick as well) - unless you want to achieve that Mona Lisa look by bleaching it or purposely not filling it in. Cara Delevingne, Brooke Shields, Audrey Hepburn, Lily Collins and our very own Gretchen Barretto are just one of the few lucky icons with perfect and thick eyebrows. But we can achieve that too by growing it out! Check out my "Oils for your Brows" blog post to know how. ;)
Nichido Eyebrow Pencil
SM Watsons/Dept Store, 138Php

My original favorites are MAC's Lingering and Fling but they cost Php 950 - 1,000.00 each and I just don't think that they're practical for everyday use. I would only use it for special occasions and for my clients. These are great and precise and I would love to use it everyday if it just weren't for the price. Anyway, right now, my go-to eyebrow pencil is Nichido's eyebrow pencil in shades Chestnut and Taupe (they also have it in Tiger Eye). I was so happy when I found them! It's just the perfect substitute for my MAC favorites and it's inexpensive too! What I love about it is it's so easy to work with. The formula is so smooth and their range of colors are just amazing!

Mary Kay Eyebrow Gel
Mary Kay, 600-650Php
I'm in love with Mary Kay's clear brow gel! It's the perfect brow gel for someone who doesn't want too much color on their eyebrows. You can just wear it alone if you're going for that minimalist look.
If you want to add more definition and color, try MAC's brow set. They have it in three colors - Beguile, Show-off and Girl Boy. I saw pictures of professional makeup artists use it on actresses and models all the time. Famous MUA's mention it on their vlogs and blogs, and it's almost always featured on magazines as well! So if you're looking for a birthday present for a friend, sister, mother or grandma... try giving them these and teach them how to use it, for sure they'll love you (EVEN MORE) for it!
MAC Brow Set
The Carefree Shopper, 950Php

Marionnaud Eyebrow Brush Set
SM Dept Store/Watsons, 59.75Php

Eyebrow Brushes.
These are essential. An angled brush is great when working with eyebrow shadows but if you're using pencils, an old mascara wand or an eyebrow brush like the one above (right side) is great for blending it in! I have been looking for eyebrow brushes for a long time now and the one from Marionnaud is just perfect. An angled brush on one side, and a mascara wand on the other. They have two sizes for these. I got mine in small since I want to be able to put it in my makeup bag.

I rarely use eyeliners. I use eyeshadows as a substitute since it's more natural and effortless-looking. A neutral pallete like this one from The Balm's Nude 'Tude is just amazing. The packaging is very cute too! Nude colors in
The Balm Nude 'Tude Palette
matte and shimmery textures from this palette are great for both night time and day time use. My favorites are: 1) Silly, 2) Sexy, 3) Sleek, and 4) Serious. At daytime, I mix Serious and Sleek, but at night I use Serious and Silly.

1 Silly
2 Sexy
3 Sleek
4 Serious

THE BALM Nude 'Tude Palette
The Carefree Shopper
(just inquire on their site, because I got this for a long time now and I can't remember
the price or if they still have this on hand)

Eyelash Curler.
I recently got my very first Shu Uemura eye curler from a stall at Robinson's Triangle area. I forgot the name of the store but they're located near the back entrance of the building, near the DVD area. They sell soaps primarily, but what caught my attention are the stacks of cosmetic brands sold at VERY affordable prices! At first, I doubted if they were authentic because the prices were really very cheap but then I asked the lady if I could open some of their products just to check it for authenticity. Their Urban Decay and MAC products looked pretty much convincing to me. Their Dolly Wink brow sets are legit as well! So I just went ahead and got that Shu Uemura eye curler for Php 350.00 only! I am not kidding, 350. Online, you can buy that at 1,000 on the least - WITHOUT shipping fee. I think, that this purchase is the wisest decision I've ever made when it comes to spending on cosmetics, I think. ;)

Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler
Robinson's Triangle, 350Php

Anyway, so what I'm basically telling you is to invest on good quality products but to always remember to be practical as well. Money matters - unless you have bills that grow on trees in your backyard.

Eyelash curlers are great for opening up your eyes and when matched with that perfect mascara, you'll be conquering the world in no time.

You have to have a mascara. Any mascara will do. You just have to find the one that isn't drying and heavy on your eyelashes because if it does, it will end up bringing your eyelashes down instead of lifting them up. Maybelline's line of mascara products are great (not to mention readily available for Bacolodnons, too) but I still wanna try other famous brands like Majolica Majorca or Dolly Wink, Lancome, Dior and Armani. Currently I'm using Rimmel's Extra Super Lash in Blackest Black. Sadly, I don't think there's a store that sells it here in my city (trust me, I looked everywhere). I got it from my Aunt in the UK and it's a great product! By far, it is the most perfect mascara I've ever tried.

Rimmel Extra Super Lash

Physician's Formula Multi-Colored Blush
The Carefree Shopper (1,200-1,800 Php i'm not sure because i had it pre-ordered from them)
Blushes make you look healthy. Choose the one that compliments your skin. My favorite blush is Physician's Formula's Multi-Colored Blush in Blushing Peach. The color is just amazing. It is matte as well so it means plus points for me (I stay away from products that have shimmer/glitter since I already have an oily skin, shimmer/glitter will just add shine to my face). I have been using this for a long time now and I would repurchase this product many times over. 

Physician's Formula Multi-Colored Blush
The Carefree Shopper

Lip Balm.
Blistex Lip Tone
SM Dept Store/Watsons, 80-120Php MAX
Lip Balms are great when you don't want to look too made up but still want to give your lips that healthy color and moisture to keep them from cracking. Choose the one that also has SPF in it so that your lips may be protected from the sun as well. My favorite is the Blistex Lip Tone, I got it from SM but I can't remember how much was the price. Php 80-120.00. It will not reach Php 150 for sure. It has a sheer finish with a pinkish brown color that just mimics the natural color of my lips. It's a great product because it has SPF 15 - perfect for keeping your lips safe from the rays of the sun and at the same time, keeping it moisturized!

Blistex Lip Tone
SM Dept Store/Watsons, 80-120Php MAX

You have to have at least one neutral shade of lipstick for everyday use. The one that's close to your natural lip color IS the perfect color. MAC's lipstick in MEHR is perfect for me because it is, again, "matte" and it's close to my natural lip color. It has a very nice soft pink color with brown undertones in it. Most matte lipsticks are drying but this one is absolutely the opposite. Although it has a matte finish, you can still feel your lips moisturized plus, it's also long lasting!

MAC Lipstick in MEHR
The Carefree Shopper, 950Php

MAC Lipstick in MEHR

Below are the swatches for the products listed above:
1. MAC's Brow Set in Girl Boy
2. Nichido - Chestnut
3. Nichido - Taupe
4. Blistex
5. MAC - Mehr

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

How To: A "Soft Look" for a Fierce Lady

I know that bright hair colors are a hit lately. From metallic reds to shades of pinks and purples. From platinum blues to corals. Women are becoming bolder, adventurous and fun. ;)

A fierce hair color is eye catching! In my opinion, it is a mark of a courageous woman. Courageous in a way because I personally think that our hair is our ultimate crown of glory. How you take care of it and how you style it greatly affects the way others see you and how you look entirely.

When it comes to hair color, my favorite is Katy Perry's barbie-ish pink look and Hayley Williams' famous fiery red.

Changing your hair color is the easy part, matching it with your make-up is the tricky one. I've always wanted to do that kind of look and see how it goes.
And by lucky chance, I got to do a look for a pink-haired model. It was one of my favorite looks ever! It was for a shoot of these talented photographers - sisters Anne and Dianne Acaso. It was really an awesome experience to be a part of their photo tandem.

It was Anne's idea that the make-up should be toned down and neutral which works well for me because I'm not comfortable putting heavy make-up on an overwhelming hair color. A striking hair color should not be paired with a face that has bold make-up colors, it's too overwhelming to take in. Make-up is all about balance, you have to let it work with you and not fight against you. Everything should be blended and well thought of.

I start by creating a perfect skin as the base. What I did here is I blended my foundation with a moisturizer, so that you mimic the look of a perfect even skin that looks hydrated as well. No matter what you use in applying it - whether your fingers, a sponge, a foundation brush or a stippling brush - take time with it.

The skin on our face is the most essential part of the look. It should NOT look cakey, and most important reminder of all: it should be of THE SAME COLOR AS YOUR NECK, HAND, CHEST and the rest of your body. Remember, you are not trying to change your complexion.
The purpose of foundations is to even out your skin and hide spots or blemishes around your face. You do not want to look like you're wearing a mask by wearing a different shade than your natural complexion. In choosing foundations, remember to stay away from colors that have red or orange undertones in it. Yellow undertones are the best.

Next step it to put concealer under your eyes using a concealer brush or your finger, it should be 2 shades lighter than your foundation. In this case, I just used a foundation with a lighter shade as my concealer. It brightens up your eyes and makes you look rested. Just remember to use colors with yellow undertones in it.

Last step is to hide spots using a foundation or a spot concealer with an eyeliner brush. An eyeliner brush is great for this job because it is small enough to get into those areas that are difficult to conceal.

Assess the shape of your eyebrows - its thickness and color.

Whatever the shape, it should always match your hair color. If you have dark hair, choose one shade lighter than your hair color. If you have light hair, choose one shade darker than your hair color.

On the model's pink hair, I decided to mix chestnut (Nichido) and blonde (Mary Kay) eyebrow pencils. They are easier to work with compared to pens and shadows.

Following the natural shape of the brows, I shade it in using feathery strokes working sideways and blend it using a clean mascara wand(sideways as well).

I finish it off by putting an eyebrow gel. Eyebrow gels are great in recreating that natural look of the hairs on your eyebrows. It also keeps the hair in place!

Important reminders in shading your eyebrows: don't get carried away by layering too much on it. Remember that you are shading your eyebrows, not drawing in new ones.

The first thing I do when working on the eyes is to prime it.
The natural oils on your eyelids tend to make our eyeshadows run. So don't have second thoughts on investing on a great eye primer! It makes your eye make-up last longer while enhancing its colors.

Next step is to curl your mascara with any eyelash curler.

Onto eyeshadows. Keep in mind to stick with neutral colors when working with strong hair colors. I applied a shimmery white shadow on the inner lid, a light brown color on the outer lid, placed a little of golden shimmery shadow in between and applied the same light brown color on the crease. I also added a little bit of peachy pink shimmery shadow on the center of the lid. To brighten up the eye, put a little bit of highlighter on the inner corners. And in lining the eyes, I just softly lined it with the same light brown shadow.

Remember to blend everything well and not letting it look too made up. Notice that I didn't line the eyes with an eye liner. I like it soft and neutral as it already is. I just finished it off by applying mascara onto the lashes.

Important reminders when working on the eyes: you should curl the roots - NOT the center nor the tip of the lashes. And when applying mascara, start at the roots working outwards using squiggly motions. It will make your eyelashes look NATURALLY thicker and longer as opposed to looking like you just applied black liquid in there. Sometimes its not only just about the makeup, its also about THE WAY YOU APPLY IT that makes the difference. ;)

I used a shimmery rose-colored blush on the cheeks and a matte brown colored bronzer on the cheekbones to add some depth to her face. I also applied a cream-based highlighter on top of her cheeks just to define it and make it look dewy and fresh.

Always use matte colors that mimic the color of the shadows on your face. Using an angled brush, contour the nose, cheek bones, chin and forehead just to add depth and definition to your face. Remember to apply with a light hand. You do not want those lines to look too obvious and harsh. Soften it down with a clean brush to achieve that natural look. ;)

Important reminders: be careful NOT to apply blushes, bronzers and highlighters with a heavy hand. You want the colors to look like its coming from your skin, not to look like someone slapped it in there. :)

Prime the lips by putting on lip balm and brush it in using a baby's toothbrush to remove the dead skin. You don't want to waste a good lipstick on chapped lip! I do this first before putting on foundation just to give time for the lip balm to sink in and moisturize the lip.

On the model, I applied a gorgeous satin nude color on the lips.

Important reminders: DON'T use a matte nude lip color when matching this hair color since it can make you look too washed out. For other occasions, you can switch to a baby pink lippy(you can wear it matte or glossy) just when you're feeling more fun or when you're in the mood to add some color!

Photographer: Anne Acaso
Model: Mariella

Here's the final look: 

If you want to view the whole set, please visit Anne Acaso's blog here.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Oils for your Brows

How do you groom your eyebrows?
Does your pair require weekly trips to the salon? Or do you do it yourself?
Either way, I'm sure all of us have experienced plucking it too thin or ended up not liking how the salon shaped them. I know, the Growing-out Phase takes too long and you're not so sure if it will grow back to its previous shape! ;( We've all experienced that - I know I did! But now, there's a cheap solution for that! I call it "The OCP Method".

The OCP Method is not my own, I learned this trick from the Brow Lounge Manila - it's an eyebrow grooming and waxing salon in Manila. I haven't tried grooming my eyebrows from them yet but I've heard great things about them and so I subscribed to their updates on Facebook. That's how I found out about this clever method. Before, I just use Petroleum Jelly on my eyebrows at night but this method is faster and better. I like the way it thickens each hair follicle too. :)

OCP is a growing-out method for your eyebrows. It's an abbreviation for Olive Oil, Castor Oil and Petroleum Jelly.

You just need 2 tablespoons of each ingredient, mix it altogether and put it on an empty container. Using your finger or a Q-tip, dab it on your eyebrows every night and you will see the effect in just a week! It's longer, thicker and stronger - shinier even!

It's very easy and affordable too! I got the Olive Oil from our kitchen, the Petroleum Jelly from my dresser and, for the Castor Oil, I just made a quick trip to the Mercury Drugstore at their Libertad branch. One bottle costs like a hundred pesos (more or less) only and it can already last you for a looooooong time. ;)

Just remember to consult your dermatologist first if you have a very sensitive skin before trying this out.

I hope it works for you too! X

This Downtown Girl

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

This Downtown Girl

Hi Ladies!

Basically this page will be all about skin care, make-up and recreating editorial looks by using products that's available and affordable to all Hiligaynons here in Bacolod. Who says only models can wear that red lip? Or that only blondes can rock that cat-eye look? You just have to know the basics and the resources. This is why I'm here - to help you all achieve that! ;)

I'm not saying that make-up should be a necessity but there's also nothing wrong with spicing up your beauties every now and then.

Now, for all the make-up junkies out there... you already know that in order to achieve all these looks that we see on magazines, youtube gurus and make-up artists, you really have to invest in good quality products - and they tend to be really expensive. However, there are also affordable products for those who are really on a tight budget that can deliver the same outcome as those of the high street ones.

I will also feature some of the places and pages here and out of Bacolod that can give you all these make-up goodies and other girly stuff at a reasonable price. You'll be surprised to know how accessible and achievable they are! ;)

This Dowtown Girl