Spring 2015 Beauty Trends

Usually, pastels saturate the spring looks. But on the runways, there were a few surprising twists this year–it wasn’t all rosy cheeks and pink lips. Take a look at some of the biggest trends this spring. You’ll more than likely be copying them soon (if you haven’t already).

spring15-beauty-trendsBold Liner
Delicate feline flicks were scant on the spring runways; instead, they were replaced by thicker strokes of black liquid liner that made for a statement-making cat eye. (Image: Imaxtree)

spring15-beauty-trends2Smoky Eyes
Black shadow is a perennial evening look, but some designers made it more mainstream and daytime-appropriate. Georgia May Jagger sported the look with a ladylike tweed jacket at Chanel. (Image: Imaxtree)

Screen Shot 2015-03-24 at 1.37.16 PMFresh Bronzed Skin
A luminous bronzed look graced the complexions of countless runway models this season. And with good reason: it’s a look that’s universally flattering and easy to mimic. To recreate it, dip your finger into a cream bronzer (I like this one), tap on the apples of your cheeks, and blend until it’s diffused and toasty-looking.
(Image: MCV Photo)

spring2015-beauty-trends5Negative Space Manicures
This one has been around for awhile, but it showed up on tons of spring runways. Manicures employed negative space to create quirky nail art in creamy pastels and bright neons. Most manicures weren’t uniform; they were like the photo above, where each hand featured a mix of designs. It’s an easy way to make each nail an accent nail. (Image: Mark Leibowitz)

spring15-beauty-trends-3Color Pops
Several runways featured a flash of color on the lids. Elie Saab (pictured) was one of the more subdued iterations; other designs used neons in blue, green, and orange to add electricity to the eyes. (Image: Imaxtree)

What’s your favorite spring beauty trend? Have you tried any out so far? Share in the comments!

Posted in Beauty Basics | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Budget Beauty: Eylure Brow Ink

eylure-brow-inkI love the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Pen in Light. I use it to define the outer tail of my brows and create the illusion of a fuller, stronger brow. When I was at Ulta last week and saw that Eylure now offers an extended line of brow products in addition to false lashes, I had to try their version of the brow pen, called Brow Ink ($9.99). Eyelure has also rebranded and overall, really stepped up their game! They don’t even look like a drugstore brand anymore!

I picked up the No. 30 Blonde shade, which is the lightest they offer (it also comes in Mid Brown & Dark Brown). The coloring is slightly different from the Anastasia version, but still great for blonde and light brows.

browinkfulltipThe major difference between the Anastasia and Eylure pen is that the Eyelure pen has two ends: one thick, one thin. I use the thick end on a slant to fill in the tail, which needs the most definition. It is a little tricky to maneuver over the arch.

browinkslimtipThe thin end is on point. I actually use this on the sparse spots of my brow and where I want it to look I have more hair, and then go over it with my Anastasia pencil, and it’s still not harsh.

browinkswatchPress gently and this pen does not give you a harsh, drawn-on, marker-y look. The effect is soft and natural, yet bold. In the photo above, I swatched both the thick and slim tips of the pencil; you can see that the color is very natural (and despite the tips’ appearance, it actually is blonde!)

Overall, this is an excellent drugstore pick that I’ve worked into my everyday beauty routine. If you love the Anastasia pen and are looking to save some money (it’s about twice the price), this is a great alternative!

It’s worth mentioning that Eylure now offers a full range of brow products, including mechanical pencils, powder palettes, pencils with attached spoolies, wax and gel, stencils, hair removal strips, and more. This line is definitely worth checking out! I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the quality, given the low price.eyelure-brow-ink2Have you tried any of Eylure’s new brow products? I’d love to hear what you think of them.

Posted in Brows, Recession Beauty | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Floral Fancy

floralfancyAlthough we’re still steeped in the cold in Philly, spring has arrived (hopefully the weather will follow). I’ve been finding myself drawn to floral prints and the soft colors of petals lately. I wanted to share a little inspiration of things that I purchased and love (a bright pink necklace and a floral shift dress), and things I’m dreaming of (a creamy Tory Burch bag and a sweater with an oversized floral print).

1. J.Crew Factory Printed Textured Cotton Dress in Roz Floral ($118, now on sale for $68): I love the colorful floral print on this sheath dress.
2. Tory Burch “Small Marion” Quilted Shoulder Bag ($495): This gorgeous bag, in the shade light oak, may be the perfect spring purse.
3. LORAC Cheek Duo Blush/Bronzer in Hot Flash ($30): I’m more than ready to leave behind my pale winter complexion. This bright cool pink blush looks beautiful on a range of skin tones, and the bronzer warms up skin nicely.
4. NARS Lipstick in Roman Holiday ($27): I first discovered this shade when I was a teenager. It’s a gorgeous soft, pastel pink that doesn’t look chalky or garish.
5. J.Crew Pop Floral Necklace ($118): This sculptural bright pink necklace adds a playful pop to any outfit.
6. Ted Baker London “Naldine” Floral Print Sweater ($195): Leafy greenery and soft oversized petals scream spring.
7. Maeve “Tea Garden” Sheath ($178): Another beautiful, colorful floral print on a shift dress.
8. Ted Baker London “Mirrored Tropics Icon” Tote ($60): A lush floral pattern that will pop against a neutral outfit. And, come summer, this can double as a beach bag.

Posted in Beauty Basics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

MAC Spring ’15: MAC Is Beauty

mac-is-beautyFor their spring 2015 collection, MAC drew inspiration from the retro beauty parlor where women spent hours under dryers getting coiffed and beautified. MAC Is Beauty is a round-up of products designed to give sixties-esque looks (think bright, creamy lips, heavily-lined lids, and thick, lush lashes). Some of the shades are intense, while others are creamy pastels. Overall, it’s really pretty. They’re also relaunching their Fluidline gel eyeliner with this collection, which is now Pro Longwear Fluidline.mac-is-beauty-promoAll items are limited edition except where noted.mac-cremesheen-spr15Cremesheen Glass ($20): Fashion Scoop (pale pink), On the Scene (pale peach), Japanese Spring (pale lilac), Star Quality (vibrant pink). All the Cremesheen Glass shades are repromotes.

mac-is-beauty-lipstickLipstick ($16):

  • Silly (bright white-pink; Lustre)
  • Real Doll (light pinky lilac; Lustre)
  • Catty (light creamy pink; Lustre)
  • Real Readhead (nude mauve; Lustre)
  • Call the Hairdresser! (rosy coral; Lustre)
  • Highlights (pale yellowy peach; Lustre)
  • French Twist (light pinky nude; Lustre)
  • Notice Me (pale lilac; Lustre)
  • Pure Vanity (pale peachy nude; Lustre)
  • Make Me Gorgeous (intense coral pink; Amplified)
  • Reel Sexy (bright coral; Amplified)
  • Diva-ish (intense fuschia; Amplified)

mac-eyeshadow-spr15Eyeshadow ($16): Yogurt (pale pink; Matte; permanent), Bouffant (pale peach shimmer; Veluxe Pearl), Preening (pale mint green shimmer; Satin), Wow Factor (medium lavender; Satin).

mac-fluidline-spr15Pro Longwear Fluidline ($16): These 16 shades will be become part of the permanent range as the new formula, Pro Longwear Fluidline. They will replace the old Fluidlines.

  • Silverstroke (silver)
  • Brassy (brass)
  • Copperthorn (coppery bronze)
  • Deliciously Rich (shimmery taupe brown with gold pearl)
  • Blue Peep (turquoise)
  • Ivy (fresh green)
  • Macroviolet (rich, shimmery purple)
  • Looking Good (shimmery burgundy)
  • Siahi (deep ocean blue)
  • Waveline (navy blue with a bit of gold pearl)
  • Midnight Snack (gunmetal gray)
  • Our Secret (milk chocolate brown)
  • Lowlight (deep, dark brown)
  • Shade (deep green)
  • Blitz & Glitz (intense black with gold pearl)
  • Blacktrack (solid black)mac-beauty-powder-spr15mac-beauty-powder-spr15-2Beauty Powder ($26): Pearl Blossom (top; light pink with silver pearl), Alpha Girl (soft peachy pink with gold). Both Beauty Powder shades are repromotes.mac-lacquer-spr15Studio Nail Lacquer ($16): French Tipped (pale pink), To Dye For (pale peach), Doll Me Up (creamy mint green).

mac-brushes-spr15137 Long Blending Brush ($42)
221 Mini Tapered Blending Brush ($24)
267 Curved Angle Brush ($24)

Not pictured: Eye Kohl in I Get No Kick (pale nude shimmer, repromote); MAC is Beauty Studio Chromagraphic Pencil in ($16, repromote); MAC is Beauty Penultimate Eyeliner in Rapidblack ($20, permanent), Zoom Lash Mascara ($17, permanent).

The collection launches on March 26 in North American MAC stores and department store counters; select North American locations will launch the collection on April 2. The collection will roll out internationally through April 2015.

What do you think: love it or hate it?

Posted in new collections | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Current Skincare Favorites

current-skincare-favorites-spring2015My skincare routine is lightening up for spring. I wanted to share some products that have been working for me as we transition from bitter cold to warmer weather (which I swear is on the horizon).

1. Aveeno Positively Radiant Makeup Removing Wipes ($7.99 for pack of 25): I buy these in bulk at Costco (you get 3 packs for about $14). They are so easy for one-step makeup removal, and they make my skin look dewy fresh before I wash my face and apply skincare products at night.
2. Clarisonic Pink Mia 2 ($149): Still my favorite way to cleanse my face. This does such a good job cleaning my skin and removing makeup that other products leave behind. It’s a blessing when my skin is really dry, as it gently exfoliates for smoother skin.
3. Circadia by Dr. Pugilese Vitamin C Reversal Serum ($60): This was recommended after a recent ayurvedic facial. I bought it because I have some lingering red spots from old blemishes, and this is supposed to lighten them up. (The verdict is still out on that; it hasn’t been long enough to tell.) I like it because it’s a do-it-all serum that nourishes, encourages collagen production, evens skin tone, fights free radicals, and fights line and wrinkles. Plus, it’s all natural.
4. Dermalogica Ultrasmoothing Eye Serum ($52): I hate putting heavy stuff around my eyes, and this is so lightweight, it doesn’t even feel like I have anything on. Good for all skin types, as it was formulated for sensitive skin.
5. Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser ($11.50): This is my go-to facial cleanser. It gently, effectively cleanses all types of skin without irritation. It’s my reliable old standby that never makes me breakout or get irritated.
6. Pevonia Stem Cells Phyto-Elite Cleanser ($43.50): I love this creamy cleanser for days when I want a little extra special cleansing. Really nice for transitioning into spring, when my skin is still dry from cold air.
7. Kardashian Sunkissed Instant Sunless Lotion ($20): I hate to admit it, but I love this stuff. It’s a great self-tanner that doesn’t smell like Fritos (although it is overly floral-scented). It creates non-streaky, natural-looking color that doesn’t look orange. I apply it before bed and wake up with a healthy-looking glow.

What are your favorite skincare products? I love getting product recommendations, so please share in the comments!

Posted in Skincare | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Too Faced Summer ’15

too-faced-summer2015While some of the products in Too Faced’s summer 2015 collection are a little gimmicky, most of them are on point. With an expanded bronzer wardrobe, this collection will have you looking sunkissed and ready to break out the warm weather clothes.

bronzer-wardrobeLittle Black Book of Bronzers ($49): You might think, “Why would I need more than 1 bronzer?” Once you have them, you’ll use all of them! The bronzers are amazing for matching your skin shade as your tan deepens throughout the summer, or for just amping up your faux bronze glow. The cooler shades in here can be used to highlight and contour. And of course, shimmery ombre and leopard powders that bring in pale pink and brighten up the whole face? Yes! Plus, you can mix these shades to create a customized bronzer specific to your skin.

natural-matte-paletteNatural Matte Palette ($36): This palette is absolutely gorgeous. It gives you six matte shadows to create depth and dimension on the eyes, plus three face powders that work as blush, highlight/contour, and setting powders, depending on your skin shade. Eyeshadows: Cashmere Bunny (a gorgeous cool taupe), Sexspresso (dark espresso), Strapless (midtone dirty mauve), Risque (grey-toned cool purple), Honey Butter (medium peach), & Chocolate Cookie (warm medium bronze). Face powders: Heaven (creamy warm ivory), Lace Teddy (pale peachy pink), and Nudie (taupe).

Too-Faced-Cocoa-ContourCocoa Contour Kit ($40): If using warmer shades to contour doesn’t bother you, this kit will be right up your alley. It has a Light, Medium and Dark Cocoa powders to contour and highlight, plus a Pop of Light powder for glow and depth. All four powders are infused with Too Faced’s cocoa complex, which contains cocoa butter and cocoa powder. Also includes a mini Contour Buki Brush, with an angled head made of Too Faced’s exclusive teddy bear hairs. To me, these colors are a little on the warm side for very fair/porcelain/cool skin tones. I might skip these altogether if you’re fair or cool, or just like contouring with cool colors.

selfie-powdersSelfie Powders ($36): This is what I was referring to when I meant gimmicky. Three powders light-filtering, photo-enhancing powders that are meant to take the need for filters out of selfie-taking. Sunrise, a warm yellow, brightens and neutralizes redness. Totally Toasted gives an allover bronzed look. Moon River, an icy purple, illuminates dull or sallow-looking skin. Or you can blend all 3 together. And it comes with its own hashtag (#tfnofilter), if you’re into that.

melted-metalMelted Metal Lipsticks ($21): Melted Lipstick goes metallic with the new formula of Too Faced’s famous lip color. From left: Metallic Bunny (cool bright pink), Metallic Macaron (midtone pink), Metallic Violet (intense pinky purple), and Metallic Tutu (peach with a hint of coral). Also available: Metallic Peony (soft pink), Metallic Debutante (peachy nude), Metallic Jelly (fuschia-based grape), Metallic Dream House (hot pink).

sugar-pop-paletteSugar Pop Palette ($36): Same as the Natural palette, but in bright, beautiful, shimmery shades. Six shadows: Macaron (creamy orange), Malted Milk Ball (shimmery bronze), Sugared Violet (blue-based violet), Blackberry (cool lavendery mauve), Bubblegum (warm bright pink), and Blue Raspberry (shimmery teal). Face powders: Rock Candy (champagne), Strawberry Ice (cool lavender pink), and Peach Fuzz (pale peach).

too-faced-dark-chocolate-bronzerDark Chocolate Soleil Bronzer ($30): A new deeper, darker addition to the Chocolate line of bronzers. If you haven’t tried these, they are some of the best on the market; finely-milled, easily blendable, and highly pigmented.

The collection launched yesterday, so it’s now available where Too Faced is sold.

Images via Too Faced

Posted in new collections | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Josie Maran Argan Creamy Concealer Crayon

Josie Maran Argan Creamy Concealer CrayonLast week, I tested Josie Maran’s Argan Creamy Concealer Crayons ($20). Josie makes seriously great products that are consistently solid, so I’m not surprised that I loved this. What did shock me was that I loved it for something it wasn’t originally developed for…contouring! These concealers make awesome contour and highlight sticks. They are so much better than other cream and stick contour products I’ve tried. They glide on like butter, apply smoothly, and blend easily. They’re available in six shades to suit a variety of skin tones. What more could you want in a contour product? I like that they tuck easily into a makeup bag for portability, and that buffing them out with a brush means no-mess application. Because they’re crayons, application is pretty much foolproof. I could go on and on about why I love these…try them and you’ll be convinced!

Image via Josie Maran Cosmetics

Posted in Face Products | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bobbi Brown Spring ’15: Hot Collection

Bobbi Brown Hot CollectionLast weekend, I tested the products in Bobbi’s new Hot collection. Although I couldn’t snap photos of the swatches (sorry!), I can tell you that this collection is fabulous. It’s full of color and products that really stand up to wear on a range of skin types. Although it’s small, this collection is powerful…it packs a punch. (I don’t think the promotional image above represents the collection at all, so keep reading to see what it’s about!)

Bobbi Brown Cheek PaletteCheek Palettes ($45, LE): Get. These. Before they sell out! These are what initially drew me to the collection. The trio of powder blushes allows you to sculpt and define your cheeks, giving them dimension. The deeper-toned blush goes on first, topped with the paler blush applied just to the apples. The metallic powder highlights on and just above the cheekbones. Plus, the colors are gorgeous! From top: Pink, Calypso, Berry.

Bobbi Brown Hot Nudes PaletteHot Nudes Eye Palette ($65, LE): Oh, how I want this palette! As if the neon pink lining on the palette isn’t enough to win me over, the shades are amazing for a neutral yet dramatic eye, and they of course wear beautifully (cause they’re Bobbi’s). Includes Ivory Eye Shadow, Smoke Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow, Peach Sugar Shimmer Eyeshadow, Cement Sparkle Eye Shadow, Nude Petal Eye Shadow, Bronzed Beige Metallic Eye Shadow, Nude Glow Metallic Eye Shadow, Blackest Brown Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow. and a dual-ended shadow brush.

Bobbi Brown Art StickArt Stick ($26, LE): These oversized lip crayons are awesome. They give such a pop of bright color on the lips. The bold color isn’t overpowering, though, because they’re matte. The look is totally on trend and so hot for spring/summer. (I’m thinking of how great they’ll look with bronzed skin!) They pair beautifully with a nude or lightly lined eye. In Hot Pink, Hot Orange, and Hot Berry.

Bobbi Sheer Lip ColorSheer Lip Color ($26, LE): A classic sheer, creamy stick for beautiful lipcolor with a hint of a glossy effect. In three new shades: Pink, Orange, and Berry.

The collection is available now at Bobbi’s site, select department stores (Nordstrom, Macy’s, Lord & Taylor, etc.), and select specialty stores like Sephora & bluemercury.

What do you think of this collection?

Images via Bobbi Brown

Posted in new collections | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Best Food in Philly

philly-foodPhiladelphia is known for its food. Whether you’re a local or just visiting, there are certain dishes and treats that are standouts in the city. I’ve been working on this post for weeks, polling friends on their favorites and trying to narrow down my own personal recommendations. After careful consideration, here is a list of the must-eat items in Philly.

cannoliCannoli from Termini Bros. and Isgro
I challenge you to find a better cannoli than at these two bakeries. It’s a toss-up; I can’t decide which is better.
Termini Bros: 1523 S. 8th Street (South Philly); additional locations at Reading Terminal Market and Comcast Center.
Isgro: 1009 Christian Street (Italian Market/Bella Vista). {Image 1; image 2}

budinoSalted Caramel Budino from Barbuzzo
The restaurant is arguably most famous for this dessert. Once you eat it, you will totally understand. It’s unforgettable.
110 S. 13th Street (Midtown Village). {Image}

royalBurger from Royal Tavern
The famous burger from one of my favorite spots comes topped with bacon, smoked gouda, caramelized onions, and chili mayo. They also offer a ton of vegan options (like the Tempeh Club) and ridiculously delicious bar food. (Can you tell I have a deep love for this place?)
937 E. Passyunk Avenue (Bella Vista). {Image}

sabrinasStuffed French Toast from Sabrina’s Cafe
You can’t go wrong with any choice at this epic breakfast/brunch spot, but the stuffed French toast is what they are known for. They’ve been serving the classic and special seasonal variations for years, and it’s one of their most popular menu items.
Locations at 910 Christian St (Italian Market/Bella Vista); 1804 Callowhill Street (Art Museum/Fairmount); 227 N. 34th Street (University City); and 50 E. Wynnewood Road (Wynnewood, PA). {Image}

picasPizza from Pica’s
Technically, it’s outside of the city, but a better pizza you will not find. Square pies with cheese on the crust, sauce on top…it doesn’t get better than this. Even Tina Fey loves it.
7803 West Chester Pike, Upper Darby, PA. {Image}

pizzabrainPizza from Pizza Brain
Pizza Brain (the world’s first pizzeria & pizza museum) is a totally different style from Pica’s. It’s classic pizza with the freshest ingredients and interesting flavor combinations.
2313 Frankford Avenue (Fishtown). {Image}

lacolombeCoffee from La Colombe
The best cup in the city.
1135 Frankford Avenue (Fishtown); 130 S. 19th Street (Rittenhouse Square); & 1414 South Penn Square (Center City). {Image}

sarconesItalian Hoagie from Sarcone’s
Full disclosure: I’ve never had an Italian hoagie, but this sandwich is legendary here. I have had Sarcone’s bread, and it is heavenly.
734 S. 9th Street (Italian Market). {Image}

villadiromaRed Gravy (Spaghetti and Meatballs) from Villa di Roma
This no-frills Italian restaurant is an icon in itself, and the spaghetti and meatballs prove why: the gravy is authentic and tastes like an Italian grandmother made it.
932-935 S. 9th Street (Italian Market/Bella Vista). {Image}
mercatoRisotto from Mercato
Their risotto, which changes seasonally, is the best I’ve ever had.
1216 Spruce Street (Midtown Village). {Image}

talula'sCheese plate from Talula’s Garden
Talula’s Garden’s Aimee Olexy has an education in cheese. She offers diners a full menu of cheese plates at Talula’s. They rotate seasonally and based on availability, but whenever you go, you’re in for a real treat.
201 W. Washington Square (Washington Square). {Image}

philipssteakCheesesteak from Philip’s Steaks
Personally, I’m disgusted by them, but people love a cheesesteak. For the best version of the city’s iconic food, forget the Pat’s vs. Geno’s bullshit and go to Philip’s, a no-frills, outdoor standing-room-only, walk-up shack on a forgotten strip of Passyunk Avenue that serves the best cheesesteak in the city.
2234 W. Passyunk Avenue (South Philly). {Image}

Philly locals: share some of your favorite Philly foods in the comments!

{Feature image}

Posted in Philly Finds | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tory Burch Eyeshadow Palettes

tory-burch-shadow-palettesTory Burch unveiled new eyeshadow palettes ($60) for her spring 2015 beauty collection, and they’re drop-dead gorgeous. I don’t know what’s better–the beautiful exterior of these palettes, or the insanely flattering shadows tucked inside. Each shadow has Tory’s signature double T logo embossed into it, which is a nice little touch. They also come with a mini dual-ended brush. Available in Cat’s Meow, and Pas du Touts. See details below.

tory-burch-cats-meowCat’s Meow Eyeshadow Palette: Shades include Hint (midtone khaki), Tawny (shimmery taupe brown), Smoking Slipper (midtone cocoa brown), Stone Cold (shimmery dark grey), Midnight (rich matte navy), & Magpie (shimmery blue-violet).

tory-burch-catchCatch Eyeshadow Palette: Shades include Wild Card (gold-toned aubergine), Little Bit (metallic peachy pink), Folly (matte coca brown), Morning Glory (pale lilac), Blushing (shimmery pale nude pink), & Evil Eye (matte teal).

tory-burch-pas-du-toutPas du Tout Eyeshadow Palette: Shades include Gamine (matte ecru), Pailette (shimmery bronze), Menagerie (metallic midtone dusty pink), Jolie Laide (metallic coffee bean brown), Beau (shimmery mauve), & Au Contraire (matte black).

The shadows are available now online and department stores that carry Tory Burch Beauty.

Images via Tory Burch

Posted in Eyes | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment