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Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Tutorial: 5-Step Everyday Make up

This is one of my super simple, everyday make up look that's done in 5 steps.

1. Prime your eyes.

2. Apply a brown eyeshadow on 2/3s of your lids, making a rough semi-circle shape.

3. Apply a darker brown eyeshadow on the outer 1/3 of your kid, completing the rough semi-circle shape. Blend inwards. 

4. Use a really thin liner brush and draw a line that goes horizontally out from the corner of your eyes. Connect the line to the semi-circle and blend it. 

5. Line your lower lashline with a light colour and you're done!

For those of you who prefer video tutorials, I've also created one!

Products Used:

Friday, June 3, 2016

Tutorial: How to Modify False Lashes for Asian Eyes

A lot of false lashes aren't designed for my smaller and differently shaped Asian eyes, so this is how I modify them for my eyes. The pic of the original lashes (Esqido's Illumina) on my eyes doesn't look so bad here, but zoomed out, they look like two fuzzy caterpillars have latched on to my eyes. Not a flattering look at all.

First of all, I measure how much of the lashes I need to cut off. For Asian eyes, I find that letting the lashes cover your entire lash line often ends up looking odd (think lashes pointing in weird directions thanks to how your lids bend them), and it's sometimes even uncomfortable. I personally find it most comfortable and flattering for my eyes, to only cover 2/3s of my lashline.

So after you've cut your lashes, you may end up with a pretty sizable chunk left behind. What I normally do with this is that I attach it with a lash glue to the outer edge of my lashes, so that its thicker in the outer corners. Make sure the longer lashes are on the outer edge. I also personally like to nudge the 2nd lash layer to the side, so that the bottom and top lashes aren't perfectly overlapping each other —its looks fuller and more natural that way!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Review: 4 Scents from Magenta's Blood

I was recently offered four free samples to review by Magenta's Blood. I've never tried this brand before, so I was definitely curious.


Perfume Oils General Review

In general, I find that the throw of these scents go only up to intimate whispering distance. You get wafts if single notes around faux whispering distance, but you definitely need to get closer to get more of the scent. The scent gets pretty faint in about an hour but doesn't fully fade until a few hours later.


Review Notes

As always, reviews are done blind until the TL;DRs are written. If any of the notes surprise me, I write an overview. I've also started adding a "Final Verdict" section to help me keep track of my perfumes and figure out what to destash, since my perfume collection is starting to get messy. Here are the categories I came up with for my "Final Verdict":

  • Love: Most awesome perfume ever. Need endless supplies of it and will swap my first born child for the last drops of it if it's limited edition. 
  • Like: I like it and may buy a full size of it, but it's not urgent. 
  • Interesting: I don't really like it or I don't think I  can wear it in public, but I appreciate the artistry of the scent. It's like a beautiful but unwearable runway piece you won't buy on your own, but don't mind owning.
  • Ok: It's okay. I like it enough, but may destash for a good price to keep my collection manageable. 
  • Destash: Kill it with fire.
  • Age it: Maybe it will smell good one day. One day. Just wait.



"Head notes: tuberose, Gardenia, Frankincense, Tobacco Leaf."

Clean, powdery white florals. It's very clean to the point where I think more of room fragrances rather than perfumes. It does make me think of bright, clean, British East Indies plantation style homes with gleaming white walls and dark wood furniture. Something like this:

Design by Gil Walsh Interiors

As it dries down, there's this soapy scent that makes me think of high end soaps to high end room fragrances. I really like it as a soap, but I'm not really feeling it as a perfume.

TL;DR: Clean, slightly woody white floral soap/room fragrance you can find in grand British East Indies plantation style home.

Final Verdict: Ok


Lost souls 

"Head notes: violet, jasmine, Gardenia, laudanum."

My dad grabbed this vial going, "What's this? Banana?"

He flinched immediately after he sniffed it from the vial and I can kind of see why. It's a very kiddy scent. On me, it made me think of some creamy, fruity bubble gum. I don't know if it's the suggestion from my dad, but it smells like banana cantaloupes to me. There's hints of crushed leaves and play-doh too. Full disclosure, I kinda like artificial banana and cantaloupes, so I like this scent. I know it's not for everyone though.

I don't know how my dad decided it's banana from the vial, but this is the pic the scent comes with:
Image courtesy of Magenta's Blood
I guess he's hungry, zoomed in on the yellow and decided it's banana perfume.

Around 5-10, it smells like artificial sugared violets, with this herbal green scent that always struck me as "itchy". It's one of those sharp, spicy, stringy sort of zesty green scent that makes me think of traditional herbal oils my Indonesian nannies used to put on my mosquito bites. I kinda like the combination, it keeps the scent from getting way too sweet on me.

Unfortunately, by 15 min, it's all soap. Sugared violet soap. With hints of play doh.

I think I'm still going to age it since it smells really great in between!

TL;DR: Sugared violet soap with hints of play doh.

Final Verdict: Age it



"Leading notes: Argarwood, funeral roses, vanilla and sandalwood."

Oh. I love this. Ok, just putting out there, this is really, really weird, but my nose is so jaded, I love it. It smells like a thick explosion of petals, and musky buttery popcorn. The buttery popcorn fades more  to a buttery, yellow vanilla after about 2-3 min, but it's still gorgeous.

It's definitely a luxurious scent, and somehow, this scent really evokes the colour yellow. It's a heavier sort of scent, but still delicate and young. I definitely recommend it for people who like heavier, muskier florals but still want to keep it young –it's a scent I see on someone in their mid-20s.

After about 20 min, the scent lightens up on me to the point where it still feels buttery, but it's also cool and milky at the same time. When initially, it makes me think of demure girls in layers of chiffon, now I'm thinking of someone more seductive. This is cool, seductive, and dangerous buttery florals. It's such a weird combination but I love it!

If I'm picking a picture to capture this scent, this is it:

You know she can strangle you with those ribbons..
Image courtesy of Maria Bashko

TL;DR: Cool, seductive, and dangerous buttery florals.

Final Verdict: Love


The Sea Wolf 

"Head notes: rum liqueur, Amaretto, licorice, sweet cinnamon, black pepper, Patchouli."

This smells like a very familiar taffy sort of candy on me. I'm trying to figure it out. Oh. I got it. Fruit Roll Ups and Gushers. It smells like a perfumed version of the dark purple Fruit Roll Ups or Gushers. There's a bit of a zesty orange soda, but my skin is not amping it up at all.

It starts smelling like one of those generic citrus autumn candles to me by 20 min, so I'm not a fan. I mean, it's objectively a pretty scent, but it reminds me too much of a common Yankee candle and I smell it so often in malls all over America September onwards, that I can't get too excited over it.

TL;DR: Fruit Roll Ups/Gushers turning into Autumn candles.

Final Verdict: Ok

Overview: Maybe the booze, cinnamon and licorice just takes over on my skin, turning this scent into an Autumn candle scent.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Tutorial: DIY Low Commitment Rainbow Highlighter

If you guys are planning on just using a rainbow highlighter for a one off event and don't want to pay $20+ for it or DIY it, here's a really easy way of doing it!

1. Pick your eyeshadows/pigments/micas of choice. If you're using a pressed eyeshadow, scrub hard until you create a lot of powder. 

2. Collect the fall out on your brush

3. Brush it onto your flat, stippling brush in a rainbow layer

4. Swipe once on your face. That's it!

Saturday, April 30, 2016

DIY: Lazy Highlighter-Blush-Contour Combo

Yes, I've seen the rainbow highlighter trend, and while I'm in LOVE with it, it's just not practical for my face. So what I made instead is a Highlighter-Blush-Contour Combo. Check it out!

So here's how to do it. What you'll need is just:

  • Micas/oxides of choice. I buy mine from TKB Trading, and most sample sizes cost only $1.50 for 6g. You'll definitely only need sample sizes for this. To put how much 6g is in perspective, an average eyeshadow pan contains 0.5-2g of eyeshadow, and an average blush/bronzer pan contains between 3-5g of products. So if you opted for 6 colours like me, you'll have enough for at least 14 large blush pans (since we're adding fillers too). The ones I got were:
    • Ivory Lace 
    • Sparkle Rose
    • Mermaid's Gold
    • Apple Blossom
    • Aurora
    • Cinnamon Matte Tone (I think this has been renamed to Brown Oxide Matte Tone)
With the exception of the oxide, which is $1.75/6g, everything is $1.50/6g. On hindsight, I should've nixed  Ivory Lace & Sparkle Rose, and stuck to just Mermaid's Gold, Apple Blossom, Aurora, and the brown oxide instead. So total cost for micas: $6.25-9.25.

  • Zinc Stearate. Again, a sample size is enough, but if you want to use up all 24-36g of micas & oxides, then you'll need 8-12g of this (2 sample sizes). This is $1.50/6g, and it's cheaper to get 1 oz ($2.80) than 2 sample sizes (though 2 sample sizes may be cheaper if you factor in shipping costs). So this will cost you $1.50-2.80.
  • Sericite Mica. Pick whatever you want, I went with L-Lysine since that's what's available to me. This costs $1.50/6g. While 1 sample size can get you about 3 blush pans, you'll need 16-24g of this to use up all your micas and oxides. If you need 24g, it's pretty close to 1oz (28.34g), so I'd get the 1oz option ($2.80-3.50). So this will cost you $1.50-3.50.
  • TKB Trading's MyMix Clear Pressing Medium. $2.50 for 0.5 fluid ounces. 

Total cost of project: $11.75-18.05.

Now here's how to do it….

WARNING: If you're attempting to stamp cute designs onto your pressed product, do NOT use a stamp that's smaller than the pan. I did that and everything exploded out. I only got it right in the 2nd attempt T.T

IMPORTANT: Sterilize everything.

1. Place the micas and oxides in separate small ziplock bags. Mix 2 parts sericite mica with 1 part zinc stearate.

2. Mix 1 part mica/oxide with 1 part sericite mica + zinc stearate mix.

3. Mix the pressing base with the powders until you get this clumpy, wet sand sort of texture. Make sure you add the pressing base drop by drop in so you don't get it too wet.

4. Place in layers in your pan & drown in alcohol.

5. Wait 1-2h until the mixture is nearly dry. To check if it's the right dryness, dip the tip of a tissue on it. If the tissue lifts the mixture off the pan, it's not dry enough.  When you lightly press down, this should feel compact and not squishy. If if feels squishy, you may need to add more powder in. I definitely had to:

After adding more powder, add a bit more alcohol. 

6. To press it, place a tissue (you may need 2-3 layers so it doesn't tear) or a piece of cloth over it, and push down. Make sure you press evenly. If you go to hard in the centre, everything will spill out.

7. Optional step: After you press, you can draw and stamp patterns on it! I used a stamp and a nail dotting tool to get my design!

And here's how it performs on my face! Left is unblended, right is blended:

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Tutorial: Smoked Out Winged Eyeshadow

Here's the tutorial for the brown, smoked out wing eyes I'm sporting here:

Yes, I posted the tutorial for this look on my instagram ages ago, but I guess I just never got to uploading it >.<

My bad. Anyway, here's the tutorial!

1. Prime eyes. 

2. Apply your false lashes first if you have hooded monolids like me. Falsies alter the shape of monolids drastically, and can make this look end up looking off. Apply an eyeshadow close to your lid colour all over your lids to make blending easier later. I personally prefer to put this only on the top half of my lids, just so I can get the colour intensity I want on the bottom half. 

3. Line your lower lashline with a pencil liner (gel's ok, as long as the formula's smudge-able). Go slightly thicker in the inner corner and wayyy thicker on the outer. While keeping your eyes open, extend the line upwards, following the upwards slope of the outer half of your lower lashline. If you look at 3b, you'll see that this isn't a straight line at all. Monolids fold in all sorts of ways, so to get a straight-looking line, you need to draw crooked/wavy/funky lines to make it look right for your eyes. 

4. Fill in the gaps and thickly line your upper lashline. If you look at 4b, you'll notice that the bottom part of my wing still retains the funky shape I outlined in step 3.  

5. Smudge the edges of the liner. I use one of those sponge tip brushes, but you can also use a short, stiff blending brush or your fingers (super hard, but I've seen one girl manage this). 

6. Pat on a dark brow eyeshadow (black if you want more drama) over the smudged liner. 

7. Blend out the edges. I do this by softening the hard edges with a short, stiff blending brush, and the going over the blurred line with a dense, tapered blending brush dipped in the same colour. 

8. Using a fluffy blending brush, lightly wash an orange/light brown/rust/brick red eyeshadow above the blended dark brown shade. I personally like applying it in such a way that half of the brush is on the dark brown, and the other half is on the blank space. How high you go with this can alter your eye shape so much, so feel free to experiment with various placements to find what works for you. I find that for me, placing it higher in the center gives me a more wide-eyed look, and placing it higher on the outer corner like what Ike doing right now gives me a more cat-eye look. You may have to go back and forth between the brown and orange eyeshadow to get the blending right. The key to this look is smooth blending, so this will take some time.

 9. The look I'm imitating calls for a more defined wing, so sharpen your wing by sweeping upwards (still following the upwards line you created in step 2) with a q-tip dipped in eye make up remover. You can also touch up on the liner (I did), but remember to stick to the tip of the wings only and re-blend as needed. This is also the part where I conceal my undereye. 

10. Using a pencil brush, go over the outer half of your lower lash line all the way to the tips of your wings with the orange eyeshadow. Keep your eyes open for this since you may have to do a wavy shape to make it look even around your eyes. And you're done!