This week’s guest blogger, the lovely Alissa Kelly, offers up fun fashion and beauty advice on her blog, Feeling Good. (Our favorite feature? Kelly’s fun nail posts!) We love her optimistic attitude and useful tips. Up first: the pros and cons of cream and powder blushes.
For most of my makeup-wearing life, I went the powder blush route. Then I discovered cream blush and haven’t looked back since. The product that converted me? Maybelline’s Dream Mousse Blush.
Freelance makeup artist Jennifer Duvall has kept us entranced with her blog jennysuemakeup.com for months. The Georgia blogger is the ultimate multi-tasker as both a makeup guru and a mommy of three! We love her great how-to advice and awesome product reviews, which is why we’re so excited that this week, she’s graciously sharing her style secrets with us.
When I say contour, it means you’re adding definition to your face by bringing certain features out, and playing down others. The payoff is big! There are a couple ways you can add contour to your face—either with liquid foundations or with powders. It’s about personal preference and how much time you have on your hands (powder takes less time to perfect in my opinion, and is easier for amateurs to pull off).
My main goals when contouring: create chiseled cheekbones, shorten the length of my long face, and make my nose seem thinner. I usually apply all of my makeup first, eyes and foundation, then apply the bronzer, blush, and highlighter last. Use a matte bronzer only a shade or two darker than your natural skin tone for contouring, since shimmer would look too fake if you’re using it on multiple areas of your face. Here’s a play by play of how to quickly contour a face.
Operations associate, Loren, has a thing for nails- and we can’t blame her. We love reading about new finishes and fun techniques, so we thought we’d give her a weekly slot on our blog to wax poetic about all things manicure (and pedicure!) related. Check back every Thursday for Nailing It, Birchbox’s dedicated polish series.
After watching all the gorgeous bright and blush-tone gowns flow down the red carpet at the Golden Globes on Sunday, I got inspired for spring colors. Based on how awards season has started and the spring 2012 shows, I’ve picked the four shades I think will be blossoming on everyone’s nails come warmer weather. Take a look and let me know the polishes you’ll be springing for in comments!
Canary Yellow: Yellow is going to be B-I-G for spring. Designers like Derek Lam, Rodarte, BCBG (above), and Diane Furstenberg all incorporated this sunny shade in a significant way into their collections. To spread the love to your digits, try China Glaze’s Shunshine Pop from their new Electropop Collection.
We love writers with fun personalities, which is why we’re ecstatic to welcome Carlye Wisel into the guest blogging fold this week. The savvy blogger has a multitude of interests, but can regularly be found talking about music and more on Vevo, Big Ugly Yellow Couch, and her personal Tumblr, Awkward City Population 1. This week, she’s sharing beauty wit and wisdom. Today: what’s actually in her makeup bag.
I always dread those ‘Makeup Must-Haves’ articles in glossies that make me feel like I’ll be drowning in cellulite, dry skin, and smeared eyeliner if I don’t suck it up and switch to every trendy product they suggest. My roundup, on the contrary, is actually full of things that have lasted through checked baggage, breakups, apartment moves, and years on end, and will likely be with me forever since they actually work — and not just because they’re ‘hot this season.’ Here’s the stuff I wholeheartedly recommend you give a try:
Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler: People say it’s the best, and I have no reason to disagree with them. The price is a little steep, but when paired with drugstore mascara, your eyelashes will be faux-big. Promise.
Estee Lauder DoubleWear Foundation: Yeah, I get my makeup advice from my 82-year-old grandmother, but so what? This is the only foundation that hasn’t melted off my face in a New York City subway. There are light and heavy coverage formulas based on the season, and the bottles last for months on end. Grandma Leila knows what’s up.
Fresh Cannabis Rose Eau De Parfum: I stocked up on this years ago when I was a beauty intern. Everyone scoffed at the scent because it has hints of weed in it, but I haven’t ever looked back. It’s floral, light, contains the perfect hint of patchouli, and no one else you know will ever be wearing it.
Laura Geller Baked Blush: I recently took a photo with a friend who is just as alabaster as I am, and my face was the only one that came out in it. After previously refusing to use a bronzer, this lightweight tan blush is absolutely the reason for the camera flash miracle. Also a big plus: it makes me look like I haven’t been huddled over my laptop indoors all summer.
Visit the Birchbox Shop to see our favorite new tools and accessories, soon to be classics themselves.
A self-proclaimed beauty addict and over-the-top girly girl, Lara Ramos has been dedicated to living a pretty lifestyle since birth. Her blog, The Glossarie, highlights ground-breaking beauty products and little laid-back luxuries. While it started as a straightforward beauty blog two years ago, The Glossarie has become a full-on outlet for chicness of all kinds. This week, Lara shares five pretty products and ideas that add a little fun to her world.
My all-time favorite blush is Stila’s Custom Color, so I could not be more thrilled that they’ve expanded the line to include a gorgeous coral hue. The formula is user-friendly and while the original bright pink shade is universally flattering, I’ve shied away from it during the summer months because it just hasn’t seemed right for me when my skin has that sunny glow.
The new Custom Color Blush in Coral brings the perfect pop to cheeks and with its hint of golden shimmer, the shade perfectly compliments sun-kissed skin and warms up even those with fair complexions. Just be sure to use a light hand—you can always build up color as you go.
I’m in absolute lust with this blush and foresee it living in my beauty bag all year round. (Bonus: I have been dusting it on my eyelids as well—a fabulous Birchbox trick that I just can’t get enough of!)
Check out more amazing Stila products in our Birchbox Shop.
Backstage at yesterday’s Giambattista Valli haute couture F/W 2011 show in Paris.
Summer beauty looks are undeniably my favorite. A fresh face is so youthful and pretty, and not to mention easy to achieve. Despite the fact that it was the autumn/winter collection, yesterday’s Giambattista Valli haute couture show in Paris has me inspired to try a new warm-weather style: using the same color on my cheeks and lids. This image of the lovely Melissa Tammerijin backstage showcases just how well a soft apricot shade can work as both a blush and a shadow—and effortless warm-weather beauty is all about paring down your products and asking them to do double duty. While not all hues of blush will work, steer clear of anything red or too dark, light tangerine and pink colors are perfect to create this feminine and vibrant aesthetic. The two products I’ll be using to get this look will be Laura Geller’s Baked Blush-n-Brighten in Pink Grapefruit as well as Benefit’s Dandelion.
Would you wear your blush as a shadow?
Love coral makeup as much as we do? Check out our Peachy Keen editorial.
There are some pretty big sports fans at Birchbox HQ — and not just the Matts! This week, we’re excited to have Amanda Balionis, a bonafide sports expert guest blogging for us. After working as an intern for the New York Jets and the New York Islanders while at Hofstra University, Balionis went on to become a sideline reporter for Verizon FiOs1 Sports and later a MSG Show host in New York. Incidentally, she spent years battling the elements (and her pride) trying to maintain a professional on-camera appearance in torrential rain, high winds, and 100 degree weather. Having suffered beauty blunders publicly, the Florida-based sports anchor is excited to share her best tips—hopefully you can avoid some of the embarrassment she’s endured.
When I first started out on camera, I did my makeup the same way for all occasions. It didn’t matter if I was going out to dinner, working on the sidelines, or heading into the studio. I quickly realized that this strategy had some major flaws. Not all makeup is meant to be worn outdoors and similarly anything that works while I’m out covering the golf course for eight hours doesn’t always translate into a good evening look. So when I’m preparing to be outside all day, there are a few basic rules I follow to minimize the self-conscious feeling that I look tired, makeup-less, or sweaty. (I may be sweaty, but that’s no one else’s business.)
This week, we’re lucky enough to have the uber-talented Grace of Stripes and Sequins on board for a week of blogging fun. Yesterday she told us about her beauty essentials; today she’s on to a topic near and dear to our hearts: bright blush! Read on for her savvy tips.
Despite my immense love of all things beauty, I’ve never really been a blush person. In the past, I’d given a couple a try — NARS Orgasm and Benefit Dandelion — but never became a loyal user.
But then, intrigued by their ridiculously bright colors, I started to play around with a handful of blushes. I instantly fell in love with two.
First: Benefit Bella Bamba. This one is frighteningly bright but when applied with a light touch, it looks amazing. It’s become my daily go-to. Throw out the brush it comes with and use a large fluffy blush brush instead. Apply to the apples of your cheeks and along your hairline and your glow will rival Natalie Portman’s at the Oscars. (I swear.)
The second is Urban Decay Afterglow Glide-On Cheek Tint in Crush. This is a cream blush, which was a bit intimidating at first. But apply just after moisturizing and it will blend into your skin effortlessly. It imparts the same glow as Bella Bamba…with the added benefit of also working amazingly well as a lip tint!
Want more inspiration? Read our Beauty Diary: Five Days of Beautiful Blush. Or learn how to get the rosy cheek look with our video tutorial, and find out how to apply cream blush perfectly.
Pick up poptastic blushes and highlighters in our Shop.
The Birchbox Beauty Diaries is a regular feature where one of our team members tries out a new beauty look every day for one week. Whether it’s lipstick or eyeshadow, different hairstyles or fun makeup techniques, we’ll give you five fun ideas for how you can shake up your routine.
Birchboxer: Thanh Tran
Title: Director of Interactive
A Week of: Really beautiful blush
Monday: Shu Uemura Glow On Blush in Pearl Wine Pink, $24, shuuemura.com
This was a bright fuchsia powder blush. The brightness was actually perfect for Valentine’s Day, and it made my exciting plans of interviewing pediatricians a touch more romantic. (Oh, the life of a 8-month-pregnant woman). Later, I layered some shimmery gold eyeshadow over it to add a little bit of sparkle for dinner.
Tuesday: Stila Custom Color Blush, $20, birchbox.com
By now, I know not to be too afraid of the bright pink blush. It worked perfectly for the rosy cheek look, and it really does change shades. Science is amazing!
Nam and her lovely assistant, Renee.
We’re shooting videos in our fab new studio today. Nam Vo, our favorite makeup artist, is here, and as always, she’s full of fun tricks. Best of all, she leans toward simple, pretty makeup looks. Today’s highlight: how to get a fresh rosy cheek. Nam uses two products: first, a cream tint by Jouer that stains the cheek, and second, a powder Stila blush to set the color. The entire look takes less than two minutes. Now, even we can handle that.