All posts by Carla

New! Benefit Majorette Booster Blush

Benefit Majorette Booster Blush
Benefit’s New Majorette Booster Blush

Before I really got into makeup (aka before blogging), I never wore blush… I figured my skin had enough redness so why add to it? It was one of those “once in awhile” things. I tend to go dark with my hair in the fall and I was a full-on “embrace your pastiness” gal until I realized I looked way too pale. I’ve told you this before, I’m not really a bronzer person (I only own 1 or 2 now) but blush is now here to stay… especially a cream blush. It is practically obscene how many cream blushes I own.

My current go-to blush is the new Benefit Majorette Booster Blush, a cream-to-powder matte blush designed to be worn underneath your favorite blush or on it’s own for a pretty peach flush. And will you look at this packaging?  Benefit can always be counted on for its gorgeous packing. It’s love at first blush on every level for me.

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Airbrush Makeup Tips

Airbrush makeup gives you a flawless look to your skin, and it’s incredibly versatile. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it. However, using a cosmetic airbrush is different than traditional makeup and can take some time to get used to. Follow these tips, and you’ll soon feel comfortable and will be using wielding your airbrush makeup tool like a pro.

First, Practice With Water
Practicing with water will give you a feel for the airbrush and how it works. You’ll be able to feel the weight of it in your hand and get an idea of how fast the product sprays. You’ll know how close to hold it to your face and how much pressure to use. This saves product and mess.

Start With a Clean Face
Because airbrush foundation gives you such a soft, flawless look, you’ll want to start off with a clean slate in order to enhance the look of your skin. Thoroughly cleansing your face before applying makeup will help to make sure your colors don’t look caked on your skin.

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Preserving My Hair Color with the Nexxus Color Assure System

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Right around the time of my last visit at the Robert Leonard Salon here in Seattle, a little package with the Nexxus Color Assure System arrived on my door step. As part of a campaign with Conde Nast, I was asked to try the system for a minimum of 3 weeks and share what I thought about the system, the Nexxus Color Assume Pre-Wash Primer in particular.

The idea behind this collection from Nexxus is simple, if water stays out of your hair, your color’s vibrancy stays in. If you have ever colored your hair in a red tone, you particularly know how true that statement is as red tones are the hardest to keep vibrant. The Color Assure systems starts with the Pre-Wash Primer, then is followed by a shampoo, conditioner and a Glossing Tonic spray for added shine. The shampoo and conditioner are sulfate free and the line features argan, almond and coconut oils as well as white orchid extract.

With the hair shaft shielded with the aid of the oils in the formula of the products, water has a harder time penetrating the hair shaft and lifting the color. Makes sense, right?

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New Pharmaca Opening in Queen Anne!

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One of my favorite beauty spots here in Seattle is Pharmaca, an integrative pharmacy that is all about natural health and wellness. It is a fantastic spot to get your green beauty fix as the stores carry brands like Jane Iredale, Dr. Hauschka, Acure and more. This where I discovered one of my favorite blemish remedies, the Sanitas Zapper.

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Here in Seattle, we have 4 stores with a new store opening in the Queen Anne neighborhood this weekend but Pharmaca also has stores in California, Colorado, New Mexico and Oregon. While the Queen Anne store is more retail than a pharmacy, each store features professionals that are always on hand to answer any questions you may have. Wondering if that cleanser your eyeing is suitable for your skin type? Pharmaca’s esthetics can help you with that.

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First CVS Opens in Washington State!

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I never thought I would be writing about a new drug store opening up in my area but here I am… doing it and I’m pretty excited about. For years, the chain most of you know and love known as CVS, eluded the NW. I remember going to LA years ago and stepping into a CVS for the first time and wondering why it had carpet and wishing I had one near me.

Now I somewhat do have a CVS near me! I was invited to check out the store that opened last week in Renton, WA (also home to the Seattle Seahawks training camp) and I have to admit, I was excited. One of the big reasons I was excited? Finally having local access to actress Salma Hayek’s NUANCE line. I’ve seen my beauty blogging friends playing with this line and now I finally can… and can easily restock if I want more.

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I learned a few things about CVS that I thought were pretty cool during my visit. The first being that the chain really wants to give women in particular, a great shopping experience. They do this in a few ways that are immediately noticeable when you walk in the store. The first is the carpet I mentioned earlier.  With the busy woman in mind, particularly for women in heels, carpet makes the sales floor more comfortable to be on.

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Looks That Rock MTV Pre-VMA Viewing Party

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Every year I watch the MTV Video Music Awards, something always happens on that show and I’m sure this year will not be any different. At the very least, there’s some awesome style and beauty inspiration on display. Tonight I’ll be watching the show with all of you and chiming in on Twitter as part of the #LOOKSTHATROCK red carpet Twitter party at 5pm PST.

CVS asked me to host a pre-VMA party to come up with our own #LOOKSTHATROCK so I had a view friends over, served up some chicken piccata  and some wine then gave each of my guests a gift bag with a CVS gift card and some Cover Girl, Olay, Gillette and Crest products to play with. When there’s good food, good wine and beauty products on the table, a good time is had by all. :)

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JINsoon’s Blue Waves of Summer Nail Art

JINsoon Wave Nail Art

Why is it that when you bite all your nails off, you suddenly want to get all artistic with them? I saw this design from Jin Soon Choi, founder of the JINsoon line, and instantly wanted to reach for some nail polish but alas… I have no nails to speak of at this moment, but I will soon. ;)

As summer comes to an end, Jin Soon Choi gives an Impressionistic nod to the blue waves of summer with a simple, DIY design. Here’s how you can create this look:

  1. Apply a base coat like JINsoon Power Coat
  2. Apply JINsoon Cool Blue to the entire nail
  3. Apply an irregular wavy line of JINsoon Poppy Blue diagonally across the nail
  4. Apply JINsoon Blue Iris and JINsoon Kookie White the same way, alternating the order and size of the line.
  5. Finish with a glossy top coat like JINsoon Top Gloss

Expert Tip: Don’t be afraid to smudge/touch the color you applied previously— it’s part of the look!

JINsoon’s Blue Iris is one of the most beautiful blues I have ever seen and one of those shades you just have to see in person to appreciate, it’s hard to capture such a gorgeous shade like this with a lens. Her entire line is amazing and you can find it online and in SpaceNK stores.

Staying Fresh & Confident This Summer

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Seattle is in the middle of some warm weather right now and frankly, I just wish it was over. I like this cool and breezy, not hot and humid. When it is this hot out, I focus on staying fresh and confident in this weather. I teamed up with She Knows to share my tips for staying fresh this summer. Pay them a visit for some easy tips you can put to use now.

Photo credit: Layland Masuda/Moment/Getty images

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Beauty Exclusives 2014

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Beauty Exclusives unveiled earlier this month are almost coming to an end so I thought I should share my picks from the sale before it ends this weekend, the things I’m lusting over as we speak.

You probably know by now that Nordstrom does not have sales on beauty but what they do instead is offer fantastic values with sets from brands we all know and love. Some items are discounted (more on that below) but most are value priced, not to mention exclusive to Nordstrom for the time being.

Ready? Here we go!

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How to Shop for a Pearl Bracelet

Bracelets are incredibly versatile pieces of jewelry that can be dressed up or down, depending on complementing pieces of jewelry and even a chosen outfit and cosmetics. Bracelets make excellent gifts or treats to indulge yourself with, and you can’t go wrong by selecting a pearl as your gem of choice. Pearls, which are found naturally all over the world and are also lab-created and refined, are a timeless classic that look beautiful no matter how they are worn. Pearls can be set into necklaces, bracelets, rings, brooches, and even hair clips. Bracelets are a popular choice due to their ease of wear and seamless blending with other jewelry.

When shopping for a pearl bracelet, consider first and foremost the length of the bracelet. A traditional length is seven inches, but smaller women may need a five or six inch bracelet, while larger-boned women may appreciate or even need an eight or nine inch bracelet. Next, think of the type of pearl bracelet you’d like to purchase and wear. A chain bracelet is most popular, but usually requires the presence of pearls strung back to back, which can be rather costly. Finally, there are bangles, which are made up of solid metal with one or two pearls placed strategically on either side; and charm bracelets, which allow pearls to dangle from metal rings.

If you’re looking for examples of pearl bracelets, consider the ones found at http://www.thepearlsource.com/pearl-bracelets.php. As you can see, there are many types of pearl bracelets available, but what they all have in common is the pearl that is present on all of them. Some pearl bracelets feature clusters of pearls, while others may offer just one or two pearls. Sometimes other gems, such as diamonds or rubies, may be placed around the pearl to help enhance the overall look. And the pearls themselves can vary in size, shape, color, and luster. Natural pearls are usually cream, opal, pink, or black in color; while cultured pearls may have certain hues enhanced for a more breathtaking finish. A pearl’s luster refers to its shine and the clarity of reflections on its surface, and this too can vary from one pearl to the next.

In the end, don’t limit yourself to a certain type of pearl or a certain grade of luster. Instead, browse around a website such as thepearlsource.com to find examples of the types of pearls and pearl jewelry that you really like, and make your selection based on that criteria.