Foxy Face Beauty

We give good face!


15 Comments

Spot The Difference

Top Left: natural brows/ Top Right: one brow done with Gimme Brow/ Bottom Left: both brows with Gimme Brow/ Bottom Right: both done with Gimme Brow and a brow powder

 

I am a mostly hairless creature. I can get away with shaving my legs only 3 or 4 times all summer, I have smooth arms with little to no hair, and my eyebrows are practically invisible. They exist, but I joke that they are see – through. To those if you rolling you eyes and saying, “I wish I had YOUR problem”, I get it. I know that I am fortunate in this area and have little room to complain. But I look like an alien without my eyebrows!

photo 1-2

Natural brows

I learned early on in my beauty career that defined eyebrows can make a HUGE difference on my face. If you see me without them, you might not be able to tell that they’re missing, but you will notice that something is a little off, not quite complete. There’s too much forehead or too much eyelid… just something doesn’t make sense. 

For years I have been an all out full glamour brow diva. I liked it strong and with a retro appeal. I have had two children since 2012, and my beauty routine has suffered a little. I am not walking around naked faced or anything, but I had to find some ways to compromise and shorten my application process. I have discovered that I actually prefer the results from some of these short-cuts. 

photo 3-2

Simply Magic

Now, my new go-to for a natural yet finished brow is Benefit’s Gimme Brow. This is a brush-on “fiber gel” and comes in what looks like a little mascara tube. It is so weird and awesome – the fiber gel is applied with the tiny mascara- like wand and it adheres to skin and hair to create the look of hair. It builds up what you already have and adds volume, and fills in where you don’t have hair with realistic looking magic. You will notice that when I do not fully understand how something works or if something is simply too awesome to explain I will refer to it as magic.

The brush itself is tapered and lets me brush on flat in the fuller part of my brow and use the pointier tip to apply to the outer area. So speedy. So awesome. So magical. This baby is water resistant, natural looking, buildable and long wearing. I seal the deal  by brushing a spooly brush through my brows after the product has dried. This gives me a pretty significant improvement with minimal effort!

photo 2-2

One brow with Gimme Brow applied

 

photo 4-3

Spooly brush on top, angle brush on bottom

I often use Gimme Brow all by itself now and am pleased with how speedy I can apply it. When I want a brow that stands out even more, or an “evening” brow I will apply a brow powder over top of Gimme Brow to amp it up even more. I used to use just a brow powder alone before I discovered Gimme Brow, but it tended to wear off a little throughout the day. Gimme Brow is great alone but also provides a nice base for when I want to apply powder, so when the powder fades or rubs off I have a back up plan! For powder I like to use the lightest shade available, usually a taupe or a blonde. I found that even when I apply makeup on people very rarely does anyone require a dark eyebrow shade to fill in the brows. You need an angle brush with a very fine edge, and a spooly brush for this too. I tap the angle brush in the brow powder and gently sketch along my natural brow, and then build on my natural brow to make them fuller.

photo 5

Gimme Brow and brow powder. Now you can tell if I am surprised!

 

Here are some brow powders that I have used and like:

Here are some application tips:

  • As mentioned before, almost everyone suits using a blonde or light brow shade. Unless you are really dark haired, stick to a lighter shade
  • Realize that this takes a little practice, but once you get used to applying brow products it is really fast
  • Start slow on just one eye brow and think about “sketching” – use light feathery strokes and avoid using a pressing motion or too much product on your brush
  • Compare after you have done only one eye – do not get up close and scrutinize it. Anyone that close to you should be interested in something other than your eyebrows anyhow
  • Do NOT use a magnifying mirror to do this. Those things serve mostly evil purposes
  • When you go to do other brow keep in mind that your brows should like sisters but not twins, and not like distant cousins
  • A spooly brush is super helpful to allow you to lighten the look, so do not freak out if it looks to dark or obvious. Spooly it! If you do not have one use a super soft NEW children’s toothbrush or an old but pristinely cleaned off mascara wand
  • The first time you wear your brows out, don’t be surprised if nobody notices. They might say something like “You look well rested,” or “You look good. Did you get an eye lift?”
  • Allow yourself to be uncomfortable for the first few times you see yourself with brows. It is something new. After a little while you will look back at old photos of yourself without brows and think that you look a little crazy

(One note that I really hope does not apply to you or ANY of my Foxy readers – if you are undergoing chemotherapy and stand a chance to lose hair, get used to drawing on your eyebrows BEFORE the hair falls out. That way you will already be used to following your natural shape and it won’t be such a daunting task on top of everything else.)

Ok Foxes, that’s my brow chatter. Tell me if you do anything to your eyebrows… what is your process? Lighten them, pluck, tweeze, sketch them on? I wanna know!

 

 

 


6 Comments

Mission Possible: Red Lips

photo-17On of the most popular questions I get asked is, “How do I find a red lipstick that works for me?” This is not an easy question to answer as many people are really asking me to make them change their perception about red lipstick and who should be wearing it, and to make them see themselves in a different light in which they are glamorous and bold.

First and foremost, anyone can pull off a red lipstick. Part of it is choosing the right shade and applying it well, and then another part is pulling a whole ‘look’ together around the lips. Like you probably wouldn’t wear a pair of glamorous high heeled shoes with sweat pants, you will want to put a wee bit of simple effort into prepping the rest of your face to embrace the red lips. And then a really huge component is confidence – you must feel it to rock it!

Choosing the Red

I’m not gonna lie, there are so many options out there! There are many brands, formulations, and coverages out there. Lipstick wise you find mattes, creamy formulas, stains, full coverage, sheer coverage. Then there are glosses that offer full coverage or are more sheer, with sparkles, without sparkles…. Options for days (or daze?).

Rather than go over every single option, I’d rather focus on a few go-to shades that tend to work well for most. This means they are a truer red rather than orange based or cooler tones of red. These are the more “neutral” reds which will look better on more people. I personally love an orangey red, but realize that most people would find it too over the top.

When you go out on your mission, go prepared with well- moisturized lips free of any colour. You want to hit up a place that allows you to test products, but also one which has good hygienic practices in place. If trying a lipstick on your lips in a store is not for you, then you can try it on your finger tip and hold it up to your face for an idea of how it will look. Ask the salesperson to help you. He or she should listen to what you are asking for and offer a few suggestions. Take your time trying the lipsticks and consider applying it lightly –  build the intensity slowly so you can see what it looks like to have a little bit on and what it looks like to wear it on full blast.

I’ve read many articles and blogs on red lipstick and there was a shade that was mentioned time after time after time. I was actually surprised that:  A) I did not already own this shade, and B) I actually had never heard of it. You have to understand this was a shock to me as I love lipstick and reds so I couldn’t believe this one was so popular and I was clueless!

MAC - Ruby Woo

MAC – Ruby Woo

The shade is “Ruby Woo” from MAC. I marched my butt to the closest MAC counter to try it on for myself. Touted as the perfect red that suits all skin tones, hair colours and even ages, I was so excited to get this hot commodity on my lips. At the counter I opted to line my lips with a liner that matched my natural lip tone. Upon applying the lipstick I noticed that it is very matte. This is a good thing with a red because anything too creamy or glossy can migrate and look a little sloppy. Once I had applied it, I decide to use a tiny amount of MAC Lipglass (lip gloss) over top to add a bit of moisture and shine. This lipstick was FAB-U-LOUS (and very noticeable)! I was in the mall and as I walked around several people complimented me on the colour. I had already eaten lunch, but it stayed on even after I ate supper much later that day. Although the intensity had faded, it was still very on. I will be returning to purchase this little gem soon!

Shiseido Lacquer Rouge

Shiseido Lacquer Rouge

Another red I love and wear often is from Shiseido. Their Lacquer Rouge line is a rich liquid lipstick with a wonderful applicator that makes it easy to fit to your lips. This formula goes on like a lipgloss, but with a lipstick finish. I own several shades from this line but wear Lacquer Rouge Nocturne (RD607) lots. I love this red. It’s less bright than Ruby Woo, and it’s moisturizing yet stays where I put it.

Quo Luminous Gloss Stick Flare

Quo Luminous Gloss Stick Flare

If you are a little more conservative, run out and try the Quo Luminous Gloss Stick in Flare. This red is delivered by means of a jumbo pencil, and glides on effortlessly. The beauty of this one is that you can apply just a little and then spread over your entire lips with a finger, providing you with a sheer glossy red lip that doesn’t jump out.  I actually use this one quite often as it moisturizes my lips when I wear it and I can really adjust the strength of colour depending on how I apply it. The one downside to this is that it is not terribly long – wearing, but it is so easy to apply that touch ups are a breeze. Don’t forget to buy a big pencil sharpener for this one!

Application is Crucial With Red

Applying red onto your lips becomes a bit of a science to get the effect you really want. It starts with preparation- you want your lips to be smooth and moisturized without flakes. See my lip care post for some moisturizing tips. The day you are wearing red, you may want to start off in the morning by gently brushing your lips with your toothbrush after you brush your teeth. Then, apply a lip moisturizer right after and do other stuff giving it a chance to soak in.

When you’ve done the rest of your makeup and maybe even your hair and it’s time to put on the red, gently blot off any excess moisture on your lips with a tissue. I would then highly recommend lining your lips with a lip liner. Liner acts like a barrier that will help keep the lipstick in place, and it will provide definition to your lips. With reds, this is a very good idea since you don’t want it feathering around the lip line and looking like a hot mess. My preference is to line lips with a liner that is the same shade as your lips or even clear rather than a red liner. This way if your lipstick wears off you aren’t left with a red ring all around your lips. If you choose a red lip liner that matches your lipstick, fill in the entire lip with it after you make the line. This will help keep your lipstick on longer, and you also won’t be left with that weird red ring around your lips should your lipstick wear off. Keep in mind that using a red liner underneath your lipstick will probably also intensify it.

Once liner is applied, it’s time to put on the lipstick. There are several application methods – direct from the tube, applying with your finger, applying with a lip brush. Direct from the tube is fastest, but for ultimate precision a lip brush will allow you best control. You can either use the brush to get lipstick from the tube and then out onto your lips, or put some on directly from the tube and then use the brush to precisely fill in the countours. If you would like a hint of the colour rather than wearing it full blast, smudge a tiny amount onto centre of your lips and then spread out over rest of your lips with your finger.

When applying a red lipstick, keep in mind this is not a time to race, you want to ensure application is tidy and clean. I like to keep a cotton swab handy with some eye makeup remover. I will dip the swab into a tiny amount of the remover and then trace around the outside of my lips to clean up the line perfectly and erase anything that went over. Finally, I like to take a little of my face powder on a wedge sponge and precisely trace around the outside of my lips to give it a perfect finish.

The Rest of Your Face

As mentioned earlier, to achieve the best result wearing the red lipstick you should put some attention into the rest of your face makeup too. A little foundation or powder to even out complexion and cover any redness (redness in skin will be amplified when wearing red lips), a little eye makeup and some bronzer and/or blush. This will set the scene for you to embrace those red lips a lot more. See my blog on a Classic Holiday Look for further tips.

Reds to Check Out

Here are a few red lipsticks for you to check out on your next shopping trip:

  • MAC – Ruby Woo
  • Shiseido Lacquer Rouge – Nocturne RD607
  • Quo Luminous Gloss Stick  – Flare
  • MAC Lip Glass –  Russian Red
  • Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Plump Perfect Lipstick Perfect – Brick
  • Urban Decay Super Saturated High Gloss Lip Color- F Bomb
  • Revlon Colorburst Lipstick – Crimson
  • Duwop Private Lipstick – Private Red

 

Alright Foxes, I am dying to hear from you on this one. Did any of these tips help or were they new to you? If you decide to rock a red this season PLEASE post a picture on my Facebook page “Foxy Face Beauty” or tag me on twitter @foxyfacebeauty. I want to see red!!!!


3 Comments

Baby It’s Cold Outside Part 2

I think the worst condition I have ever seen my hands is when I worked over the winter in a post office in Edmonton. With all of the Christmas deliveries, the back door open, the wind blowing the fridgid air in, and then handling all of the parcels and papers…. every action I took in that job sucked a little more moisture out of my already desolate hands leaving them cracked and bleeding and having to wear something on my fingers that I not so fondly referred to as a “finger condom.” Ugh – that was a run on sentence if I have ever written one but I also wanted to get that memory over with quickly!

Normally, my hands are dry. My cuticles snag on things and rip and hurt. Living in Ontario now I find the summer humidity rectifies all of this and I barely need to pay attention to them at all, but once the cold hits I need to be on hand duty pretty much 24/7. There are so many hand products out there and I have tried many, but only a few I have found can stand up to a Canadian winter.

Let’s start off with this piece of advice – cream or lotion of ANY kind going on ANY part of your body will not absorb properly if your skin is too dry and flaky. You need to remove some of the rough surface in order for the cream to do it’s job best. This is where a hand scrub comes in. For some of you this may seem like an unnecessary step or a luxury, but trust me and try it! Who cares if it is a luxury, it feels AH-MAY-ZING! While there are many DIY posts online to help you make your own scrub, I tend to purchase them. I am not saying one is better than the other, I am just not a DIYer.

31443~nocolor

There are a few hand scrubs that I have used and enjoy. Crabtree & Evelyn makes a great scrub called “La Source Hand Recovery”.  This product helps remove the dry and flaky skin with mild exfoliants. This is best applied to dry (as in not wet) hands and then you work it around by rubbing hands together. Pay special attention to the backs of hands and around the cuticle. Then, rub hands under warm water until it is all rinsed off. Immediately your hands feel smoother and look more lovely. Although this product is touted as a scrub and moisturizer in one, I would recommend applying a good moisturizer afterwards after blotting your hands dry with a towel. I have also enjoyed Mary Kay Satin Hands Satin Smoothie Hand Scrub, but it only comes as part of a set and I don’t always require the other pieces. You can use a hand scrub a few times a week or even daily in the driest of seasons.

I don’t know about you, but I really like to try a hand cream out before I buy it. This often limits me to more expensive brands as they are usually the ones that have testers. I have taken the risk of buying without trying before, and I usually end up with something too watery to do a good job, or alternately one that is too sticky and won’t rub it (subsequently leaving a film on my hands that collects dirt throughout the day so I look like I have been digging through garbage). I find L’Occitane makes wonderful hand creams that are a real treat to use AND are effective at reparation. There are a number of scents to choose from and often you can find multi-packs to get several to try. I also really like Avéne Cold Cream Hand Cream and Biotherm Biomains Hand Cream

BODYBATH_Hc_Moisturizers

Application of hand cream is really important. For years I would just squirt some into my palm and rub it in. Then, I would be irritated when I couldn’t open a jar of pickles or something (I know weird) because my hands were too greasy. Well, let me give you a tip… maybe you are super smart and already use this method… put your lotion onto the BACK of your hand and then rub the backs together. Since this tends to be where you are dryer it will help distribute the lotion or cream to where you need it most. Pay special attention and rub into each finger nail and into each cuticle. Lastly, rub any remainder into palms only if you need to. Voila! Now you can open jars to your hearts content!

Nail_Care_Apricot_Cuticle_Oil_PackSpeaking of cuticles, I like to employ the use of a cuticle oil whenever I remember (not nearly often enough). This is a great way to prevent hangnails and cracks as the winter weather sets in. I am prone to the skin on the sides of my nails splitting if I neglect my hands, and this is a very painful and ugly thing to experience. The options are endless here too, but I like to use Essie Apricot Cuticle Oil. It is in a nail polish bottle so it’s small and easy to tote around, and I like to apply cuticle treatments with a brush as it is fast and easy. Truth be told, the main reason I ever purchased this particular one is I had a sample of it in a magazine insert. I used the sample, liked it and bought it. Sampling works!

There are times when my hands need an intervention due to abuse and neglect. This is when I use a night treatment that looks a little strange and makes my hubby call me “Mickey Mouse Hands” (I think he is a little creeped out by how it looks). BUT – it helps provide quick relief to painful stinging winter dry hands. Go to the drug store and buy cotton gloves. You can usually find these in the beauty section. Then at night slather on your cream of choice, or if you are like me and require major help, Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Skin Protectant. This magic elixir is a beauty fix-all for everything from ravaged hands to windburn on your cheeks. This is a truly legendary, award winning product that boasts a multitude of uses. So, once I have slather this stuff all over my hands, I put on the cotton gloves and go to sleep. The gloves allow the product to stay put and have a chance to soak in to where you want it rather than it ending up all over your sheets. When I wake up there is a noticeable difference. If my hands are really bad I will do this a few nights in a row along with the regular daytime methods noted above, and within a week my hands look human again. elizabeth-arden-eight-hour-cream-skin-protectant

What do YOU use for hands to keep the winter sting at bay? Please leave your comments and questions below- your feedback is important to me. If you enjoy this blog please feel free to share on your social media!

Up next… Baby It’s Cold Outside Part 3 – Body and Part 4 – Face… and then on to some make up stuff!