Hair

The Now Brow

I was obsessed with Drew Barrymore in middle school. The movie Mad Love was out and I wanted nothing more than to look like her.

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I had the flannels, the floral cotton dresses, the MIA combat boots (it was the 90s after all), even the short hair, but something was missing: those barely-there-brows. Naturally I picked up the nearest tweezers and began vigorously ripping hairs out of my face.

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Nails, OPI

NAILED IT! New nail colours in time for gifting.

If you know me then you know I change my look. A lot.

My husband likens this to being with a different girl constantly. And he’s right.

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Here they are, the lengths and colours over the past four years.

But this isn’t a post about hair. Believe you me, the time will come.

My mum used to do nails. When you come to a foreign country and barely speak the language, nails may be your option. She thought this was her option and she did it. And she did it very well. And I watched.

I used to practice doing my own nails every fucking day¬†when I was in middle school. No joke. I’m OCD when it comes to certain things in life and nails are definitely part of that circle. One tiny chip – redo everything. One busted nail – redo everything. Thus, every-day-nail-practice-time.

After high school I became a fan of acrylic nails. After rockin’ some falsies for a couple of years [with a minor fungal infection along the way] I decided our time together came to an end. And I started doing my own nails once more.

Now I don’t let anyone touch them. Seriously. Every time I’ve gone to a salon for a mani-pedi, I’ve com home to redo everything myself.

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Sup. #nailsbybelleface

Obviously in order to have great looking nails one must have an arsenal of nail polish to show off. And, boy, do I have some rad colours for you and your dirty Christmas socks!

Without any further adieu…

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One of my new favourite lacquer companions is, surprisingly, Crabree & Evelyn! That’s right. Not only do they create incredibly delectable scents for the home and body, but now you can pamper your nails with these luxurious winter colours. I am absolutely in love with Cardinal and Silver. In love. The other two aren’t half bad either [Cinnamon and Anthurium]. The $6 price point is a cherry on top.

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Next on the menu is Mineral Fusion! If you haven’t already seen them at your local Whole Foods, you’ll definitely pay attention next time you go. There are over 60 colours to choose from, but the ones I’m showing are my faves. [Nickel & Dime – currently living on my toes, Sandstone, Glint of Mint and Crimson Clay] As expected, these have zero evil ingredients. Formaldehyde free, bitches! The brush is a perfect thickness and the colours are smooth and fast drying. Normally $7.99 and currently offering a December deal for $5.99 on the website. That means if you buy all four of my fave colours, you’re only spending on three! Go.

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Last, but definitely not least is a set from my personal style icon, you guessed it, GWEN FREAKING STEFANI! At last there is an incredible collaboration with colours I can stand behind completely. OPI is genius. Though these are too good to be stocking stuffers, you can gift them to anyone you want starting January 2014. Like me. I don’t celebrate Christmas. I celebrate the new year. New year, new colours. That’s what’s up. Having the good fortune of playing around with this collection, I can tell you right now that I have never been happier. They dry so quickly that I did my nails on Thanksgiving morning and immediately started cooking without a top coat. Hel-lo. Already numbers 3 and 4 and 6 are my absolute faves. 1) In True Stefani Fashion 2) Hey Baby 3) Love. Angel. Music. Baby. 4) 4 In the Morning 5) Push And Shove 6) I Sing In Color

Boosh.

Now show me your pretty fingers!

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Eyes, Grooming, Hair, Lips, Makeup, Moi, Skin

I got Racked.

If you haven’t already been bombarded with this – there is no escape.

Last week I was featured on Racked LA¬†as a “Glam Pro”. This is kind of a big deal and I’d love it if you checked it out. After all – there is no such thing as bad publicity, right?

I’ll make it worth your while with all the product recommends and an exfoliant recipe you can make in your home because you already have the ingredients. Swearsies!

Here’s a little taste…

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The photographer, Elizabeth Daniels, and I had a little too much fun at Naimie’s that day. Now she’s got a whole new beauty regime and I’m super excited about it.

Special thanks to Natalie de Groot for giving me a shirt from her new line, Nat+J, for the shoot.

And, of course, big love to Kat Odell for whoring me. ♥

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Beauty, Fragrance, Health, Makeup, Serums, Skin

Hooray for Boobies!

I have them. I love them. I’m terrified of having babies because I love them so much. I don’t know what I would do if they were taken away by cancer. Yes, I’m vain. Deal with it.

October is the national Breast Cancer Awareness Month and this is a post about some really awesome beauty products you should buy to stay pretty, but also help with the research quest in the elimination of the pesky little shit that invades chests and makes people sick.

There are lots of them I recommend. You know I wouldn’t share anything I wouldn’t personally slather myself with …

MITOQ Bottle & Box

MitoQ is part of my nightly ritual. This stuff is science: “the¬†only topical cream proven to deliver ingredients deep down to mitochondria at levels shown to have an immense effect in rejuvenating the cells, encouraging the natural production of collagen and elastin and leaving skin looking radiant with a lit-from-within glow.”¬†If you buy MitoQ any time this month, they¬†will donate¬†15% of net proceeds¬†to¬†one of the leading national education and support organizations, the¬†National¬†Breast¬†Cancer¬†Foundation (NBCF).

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DECL√ČOR Aromatherapy Coffrets¬†¬†are a spectacularly amazing day serum and night ¬†balm set in an eco-friendly bamboo case. There are 5 different skin types to choose from and for the 7th year in a row¬†DECL√ČOR will donate proceeds to¬†Cancer¬†and Careers, a program of CEW Foundation.¬†

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PUR Attitude¬†offers beauty products with zero chemicals that could lead to cancer to begin with, so they are¬†offering¬†50% of net sales¬†for the brand’s¬†3-Piece Skin Essentials Kit [moisturizer, face wash and eye cream]¬†and the¬†Fountain of Youth¬†[anti-aging serum]¬†to the National¬†Breast¬†Cancer¬†Foundation (NBCF) during the month of¬†October.

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Bright Future Eye Shadow Compact by Jane Iredale is¬†an adorable mirrored compact featuring five eye shadow shades and a travel-sized eye shadow brush, adorned with a rose-colored Swarovski¬ģ Crystal.¬†One hundred percent of profits (not just proceeds!)¬†will be donated to LBBC all year round. These colours are practically universal and would be a great gift for the holidays as well.

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FragranceNet.com will donate 15 percent of the proceeds to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation¬†¬†if you buy anything from the “pink boutique”. These are some of the sample fragrances though you can find other beauty products on the site like hairspray, sea salts, massage oils, shower gels, etc.

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Film to keep an eye out for: BEAUTY AND THE BREAST gives viewers a behind the scenes look at nine female survivors coping with the harsh realities of breast cancer as they aim to demystify the disease and blossom in the face of adversity. Get ready to cry and rejoice.

Hooray for boobies.

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Eyes, Makeup

Top 5 Eyeliners and how to use them.

My mum’s been wearing the same makeup for as long as I could remember.

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Mother. Au naturel…bar the liner/mascara. Don’t tell her I posted this because she’ll always find something wrong with it.

When I was a little girl I sat watching her intently every morning while she applied those two jet black lines on her eyeballs. This always followed by mascara, naturally. Which always followed by de-clumping with a needle. A fucking needle! Mind you, back in the day, in what was the Soviet Union, the mascara she used came with a brush so big that would be better maneuvered around a shoe; the pot of mascara wasn’t far off either.

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Not too far off from something like this cake mascara. Apparently they’re still around for those that love to build up their lashes.

Anyway, she was so quick and proficient with these liner flicks that it looked easy enough for anyone to do. Years later, now residents of the US, I got my little hands on mum’s American liquid liner and decided to give it a go while she was away at work.

Fail.

Determined to make it happen, I would spend hours of class time in high school, particularly my Biology class with Mr. Beeftink (such a great name) painting mine and anyone else’s face. Practicing. Perfecting.

There was a moment I thought I was Gwen Stefani, wore track pants and crop tops and thought white liner peeking right above black liner was the shit. I swear I’ve seen people try to do this in the past year and it makes me pee my pants.

Now, I can’t imagine life without eye liner…

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Clearly I’m a fan of red lipstick too.

There are so many textures and ways you can manipulate them. Under shadow or above it. Fat. Skinny. Long. Geometric. Metallic. Gel. Cream. Top. Bottom. Whatever position you like, my dear. The list goes on and on.

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Some of the beauties I’ve lined.

Without further adieu, here are my faves:

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Smashbox Jet Set Waterproof Eye Liner – gel liner that was recently reworked. This stuff is just plain fucking awesome. Though it stays on through tears and sweat, you can always manipulate from a sleek line to buffing a smokey texture. My recent fave is the Dark Brown which is amazing on hazel and blue eyeballs. $22

Merle Norman ProPenEyeLiner

Merle Norman Pro Pen Eyeliner Рis just like using a marker/pen. It glides on super smooth and leaves the perfect line. Having something so easily maneuverable is perfect for anyone looking for liner practice. It only comes in Sharp Black  and it really is just that, sharp. $15

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Milani Liquid Eye – can be found at your local Walgreens/CVS/Target. Brownie point numero uno. Fits into every budget – 2 points. Their blues are electric and glide on beautifully – 3 points. Won’t smudge – 4 points. Paraben-free – gold star. $6.99

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L’Oreal Lineur Intense Felt Tip Liquid Eyeliner – is what my mum wears every day. It’s what I used to wear when eyeliner came on my teenage angst-y radar. A drugstore staple. Great for sensitive eyes and lasts up to 8 hours. $9.79

_6811886Kevyn Aucoin The Eye Pencil Primatif – my all time favourite pencil liner. I’m obsessed with the way this bad boy glides on and stays. My leaky water line has never created crease goop in the corner of my eye after wearing it for hours like some others. Dark like a kohl and available in 7 colours. $26

If you don’t wear eyeliner because you are afraid to look like an earthquake hit when you were applying, here are some tips:

  • don’t try to create a long line, shorter staccato strokes will do the trick
  • if your eyes naturally slant downward on the outer corners you probably shouldn’t wear liner on the water line because it will accentuate the droopyness, but you’ll definitely benefit from a cat eye
  • white liner on the water line widens smaller eyes
  • take a q-tip to your liner [not liquid] and smudge for a softer look
  • when applying, keep your eyes open if you can so that you can balance both sides of the face
  • have fun, you won’t learn any other way

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Beauty, Brushes, Grooming, Hygiene, Makeup, Prevention, Set Etiquette

Dirty Makeup Bitches

I have zero fucking tolerance for anyone with access to makeup and faces that is not just unprofessional, but dirty. ZERO.

Having heard countless complaints from friends/clients about the horrors of filthy brushes, disorganized messy kits, post-application breakouts, rashes and, worse, infections – I have seen some heinous shit myself.

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And then we have this past weekend. I was so stoked to work with my favourite makeup and hair friends on a shoot in Orange County [please note that I despise the OC for all of its plastic, gaudy, suburban splendour which makes this story that much worse] because we have the same aesthetic and sense of humour. These things are important on all shoots, let alone places that require them to survive.

Then walks in what I can only describe as a heavily made up human suit stretched over the alien from the movie Alien.

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Immediately the three of us knew this was a MAC artist. This was reaffirmed by her MAC Zuca case and the skills she possessed which I will indubitably school you on.

I won’t get into the fact that she started rearranging my coffee cup and glasses without asking [apparently that’s her shady modus operandi], or that she didn’t ask us nor the producer what it is the, now, three of us should have been creating in unison. What I will tell you about is how she whipped out her busted up caboodle and started cleaning her disgusting brushes.

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My immediate reaction.

I nearly fucking vomited.

Perhaps instead of spending hours on herself that morning painting on a tranny face mask, she should have been washing her fucking brushes and not insulting the rest of us with her lack of professionalism. Oh, but then there is that.

Professionalism.

So, she came in with two “hair stylists”. One was very pleasant and nice and had on a smile and was very eager to cooperate. The other was so wet behind the ears she looked like everything was a surprise and brought about three cans of BigSexyHair she probably picked up at Ulta. *Note to all newbies in the business: smile, nod and learn. Bad attitude will get you as far as sanitizing brushes if you keep it up. Humility is the way forward.

To make this all easier to swallow let’s divide this into teams: Team Awesome and Team Ding Dong. No explanation necessary.

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While Team Awesome was kicking ass and churning out excellent work and running around on the two sets [one photo and one video], the Ding Dongs were DOING EACH OTHER’S FUCKING HAIR AND MAKEUP in the dressing room. Are. You. Fucking. Kidding. Me. And Alien had so much as, without flinching, giant rollers in her hair for hours. So, while we, the ones with decades of experience are running around and sweating, the newbie tards are hanging out and having a great time together. Did I mention they were the first ones to attack the lunch spread?

Every time Team Awesome walked back into the dressing room all would get quiet and dagger eyes would come out.

Then let’s talk about the work. Specifically how there is a special talent in making white skin look ashy. There were 5 girl models and 3 guys. Two of the girls had the most delicious dark chocolatey skin ever and I was fortunate enough to grab them first. My girl Cathi had a German girl who looked Brasilian. Alien grabbed an actual Brasilian girl and a white girl. Both looked looked like they were wearing gray face masks. Dark dark eyes and lips so light they looked dead. Mind you this is loosely the look we’re going for…

Calvin Klein Underwear Fall 2009 Ad Campaign

Dewy, sleek, contoured.

Oh, yeah, and she added guy-liner to one of the dudes. Epic. He looked like the Prince of Persia.

There was one incident where she grabbed one of my girls and put her in her chair “for touchups” and I immediately asked the model to kindly play musical chairs and sit in mine. Alien wasn’t happy.

Then there was another incident, about an hour prior to wrap, where Alien succeeded in “touching up” one of my girls. Luckily I caught whiff and remedied [I mean if you saw this you would die – homegirl looked like she was wearing a Day of the Dead mask]: walked her ass back into the dressing room, took a face wipe to her and started all over. Needless to say Alien bitch had her jaw on the floor the entire time.

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This was one of my girls. Not the victim. Look at that skin colour! I die.

So in order for you not to be a dirty makeup bitch, here are some tips:

1. CLEAN YOUR FUCKING BRUSHES!

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  • Baby shampoo or Bronners soap are gentle enough to clean your brushes with without buying crazy expensive stuff.
  • Wet the brushes.
  • Dab a drop of soap onto your palm and swish the brush around gently in circular motions.
  • Wash with lukewarm-to-cold water until it runs clear.
  • Lay flat to dry.

2. CLEAN YOUR FUCKING BRUSHES!

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  • For a quickie, in-between-thorough-washing situation, these two are my fave.
  • Parian Spirit and Cozette both smell like freshly sliced citrus fruit and leave your brushes looking and smelling just as lovely.
  • Spray the brush or paper towel and gently wipe the brush in a circular motion.
  • Repeat as many times as necessary until the brush wipes clean.

3. Sanitize your makeup between people.

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  • Even if you’re not a makeup artist but you like to play one with your friends.
  • Rubbing alcohol and a cheapie mist bottle from the dollar store are your friends.
  • All of your powder/pressed eyeshadows can be sprayed, lipstick, cream blush, etc.

4. Don’t double dip!

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  • This is a Make Up Forever¬†spatula.
  • If you want to try your friend’s lipstick or cream shadow, or cream blush – whip out your spatula, scrape scrape, try.
  • If a spatula isn’t on hand, you can use the end of a brush – the plastic/wooden end if you need me to chew it up and swallow for you.

5. Sanitize your hands before touching anyone’s face.

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  • This is a diagram for those that don’t know how.
  • You may replace hand sanitizer with soap and water if it pleases you.

And if your makeup artist looks like the MAC counter exploded on their face – run very fast and very far.

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Body, Grooming, Health, Hygiene, Moi

Vagina doesn’t REALLY rhyme with anything.

Nobody likes a stinky pink.

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve vomited in my mouth from clients who sit in my makeup chair, legs spread eagle, radiating musty-basement-full-of-dead-fish from their tacos. Sweet Geezeus.

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For the love of breathing to stay alive, please take care of your lady bits!

When I was a kid [and only a few inches shorter] we lived in Kiev, Ukraine and I predominantly stayed at my grandparents’ house. They had a room with a toilet next to a room with a sink and tub. Communism, baby!

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Mum and I back in Kiev right before we fucked off across the pond. This is a clean-vagina face.

In that little room with a toilet my mum and grandmother taught me hygiene. To an extreme.

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Babushka and I circa twenty years ago.

We had this frosted white plastic cup that I was taught to fill with warm water [in the bathing room next door] prior to peeing to be used post peeing, like a ghetto bidet. This was the cornerstone of my many psychoses OCD moments.

Without getting into the evolution of my hygienic practices, you better believe I keep my vagina clean and pretty. Needless to say I always carry baby wipes in my purse.

I’ve recently discovered SebaMed Feminine Intimate Wash that is an organic gel and mimics your body’s natural pH. This stuff smells delicious and the soap-free formula won’t strip you of the gooey good stuff. Squeeze a drop or two onto a washcloth, massage your bikini part and wash away. Voila! Happy pussy.

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They also make products for hair, face and body!

Then, there’s this other new sexy company that makes sexy products without any fake additives. Good Clean Love has a lube that is aloe vera based, 100% natural/organic, edible, safe for knocked up ladies, and simulates natural lubrication like a champ. Ding! Sexy time.

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Also comes in flavours like lavender and cinnamon vanilla. Can you say yum?

And then I have this friend called Hana Lash. Hana is not only a hottie-boombalattie and talented musician/performer, but has recently launched an Etsy shop with the most original vagina cards you ever did see. There’s one for every occasion and they are fucking brilliant. Please buy me some [please include the Bundle Up necklace too]!

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Current status of my vagina: undergoing laser treatment at the Hot Spot Laser Center in Pasadena. Best husband in the world got me the wedding gift that keeps on giving – 6 sessions of Brazilian baldness. Cue angels singing. This place is awesome and ran by two adorable sisters, Marine and Narine, who don’t have a website [gasp] and don’t advertise [double gasp] but kick serious ass when it comes to ridding of unwanted sprouts. It says something about a business when you’re overbooked just by results and word of mouth.

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Stay classy, ladies and wash that snatch! Singeing nose hairs has never been in.

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