Sunday, 9 November 2014

At Lastttttt, My Shade Has Come Alonggggg

I used to think that Iman Luxury Pressed Powder (Earth 4) was the best match for me.  It was a huge improvement from the Revlon foundation that I was using before.

Luxury Pressed Powder

Yes, it was a lighter shade than my complexion and yes, I could see the powder on my face before blending it in,  I wasn't too concerned about this because it was not light enough to make my face look ashy, and that was good enough for me.   I just had to make sure that I applied it sparingly and blended it in.  I didn't mind having to do that because it did not require much effort and my face looked natural when I had finished.

I was content to do this since 2004 but in 2013 something inside of me was not completely satisfied and I felt like trying something different when it was time to go powder shopping again. I had seen Iman Perfect Response Oil Blotting Pressed Powder many times before but this time I decided to try it.  After much swatching and testing (I wanted to be absolutely sure),  I bought Deep.

Perfect Response Oil Blotting Pressed Powder

With the Perfect Response Oil Blotting Powder I don't see the powder's colour when I apply it, I only see it's effect which is a matte finish.  This could only mean one thing; it is an exact match!

At first I thought the brush wasn't picking up any product because I could not see the colour of the powder on my face like I was accustomed to with the Pressed Powder. I wiped it on a tissue and saw the colour there.

I felt so happy and excited.  I am glad that I decided to try this product; I've never experienced anything like this before.

I'm not upset nor disappointed that the Perfect Response Oil Blotting Pressed Powder product does not live up to all of its claims. Yes, it does offer a natural looking matte finish No, it does not control nor minimize my oily T-Zone area.  This will not stop me from repurchasing this product because I just wanted a powder. It has the same effect as the Luxury Pressed Powder whose only claim is that it gives a matte finish - this makes it a winner in my books.

Finding the right shade shouldn't be as difficult as it often is, here are some tips for Choosing The Right Shade Of Foundation/Powder 

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

The Reason I'm Not Posting As Often

Hello Beauties, have no fear, Beautiful & Unspoilt is still here!!!!

I've been 'missing in action' because of a recent lifestyle change - I'm on a mission to lose the weight that I gained over the past few years.

Beauties, I had reached the point where I hated what I saw in the mirror.  I felt sloppy and unattractive, and knew that I had to find a solution to this problem. I now exercise regularly and eat healthy, and I am in awe at the progress I have made.

Progress!!!!! *happy dance*

Sadly, my exercise routine is very demanding and tiring.  In fact, I hardly have any spare time these days, nor do I have any energy left after completing the exercise sessions.  I had to do some soul searching about Beautiful & Unspoilt's future when I realised that I was unable to give my Blog the attention it requires.   Through it all the one thing that I knew for certain was that  I could not abandon you.

I am hoping that when I reach my weightloss goal that my exercise schedule won't be as demanding and I should have more time for my Blog.

Until that time comes even though I'm not able to post as often, I'll post whenever I can.

To stay in touch add me on Instagram since I tend to post more frequently on that platform. You'll find mini reviews and FOTD's - Face Of The Day (for makeup and accessory options to wear with your outfits), among other things.

 "...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Review - Beauty and Makeup's 7 Biggest Mistakes in Applying Foundation

Can't figure out why your foundation doesn't look flawless?  Maybe you are making on or more of the mistakes Beauty and Makeup mentioned in 7 biggest mistakes in applying foundation.

Here's what I have to say about each of the mistakes:

Mistake #1 - sometimes the closest shade still is not close enough.  If it doesn't match your skin tone, don't waste your time buying it (Dont Be A Victim - How to Choose the Right Shade of Foundation or Powder offers some useful tips).

Sadly, some sales reps are just trying to get the sale and your best interest is not always their priority (read my 3 part series ERROR - That Is Not The Correct Shade For This Client  to see what I mean).

Mistake #2 - it's the only skin you have, be as gentle as possible.

Mistake #3 - to apply my foundation and powder on mornings I always try to use the light coming through my window. When I  used the light from the lightbulb it always looked heavier when I checked the mirror at work.  I would then have to wipe off the excess because I don't like heavy makeup.

Mistake #4 - I'm not a part of the 'foundation on the neck' movement but wherever you decide to apply your make up blending is critical.

Mistake #5 -  try using concealer if you want to cover any defects.

Mistake #6 - your face should never look as though it is covered in something (read The Key to Applying Everyday Make-up).

Mistake #7 - don't you dare miss this important step (read One Important Thing You Must Do When You Prep Your Face).

Hopefully you've figured out what you were doing right and what you need to start doing.

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Beauty Counter 'Horror' Story

Can somebody help me to understand this nonsense that happened recently at the beauty counter?

Let me set the scene:
Someone very dear to me wanted to purchase powder and I went with them to assist as needed. Her shade was out of stock and as I watched the situation unfold I became more and more puzzled.

Why would a sales rep attempt to sell a customer a darker shade of powder without testing it on them first?

Why didn't the sales rep offer the customer a mirror to see their face after the powder was applied?

Why didn't the sales rep invite the customer to go outside to view their makeup in natural light?

Why didn't the sales rep determine how much the customer was planning to spend before placing other products that they recommended on the counter for the customer to purchase?

Why was the sales rep upset when the customer decided not to purchase the powder because their face looked ashy?

Why was the sales rep upset when the customer decided not to purchase the recommended products which they never wanted in the first place?

Why did the sales rep storm off instead of recommending something from another brand?

I cannot emphasize enough how important it is for beauty sales reps to be more concerned with putting the customers' Best Face Forward (BFF), and not just making a sale.

Here are some other bad experiences:

ERROR - That Is Not The Correct Shade For This Client (Part 1)

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Review - Allure's 10 Commandments of Mascara

Mascara has become one of my must-have products because  my natural lashes need a lot of help to make them noticeable.  It's hard to believe that I wasn't always a lover of this product but I had my reasons .

I have tried many different mascara brands over the years and these 2 made the honour roll.  They take my short lashes from zero to hero.

When all else fails there's always strip lashes.  To be honest, I've only worn these for the online make-up contests  that I entered in 2012 and 2013.   I keep promising myself that I will put them to the test and wear them when I'm going out. That promise is yet to be fulfilled, I just don't have the time needed, I'm always rushing.

Allure - The Beauty Expert shared some interesting tips.  The image below is just a teaser, click this link to get all of the details - The 10 Commandments of Mascara .

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"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Monday, 26 May 2014

Review - elf Studio Mineral Infused Face Primer

elf Clear Studio Mineral Infused Face Primer is an affordable face primer ($6 on elf's website)that works .  It was no different to the other primers that I have used in the sense that both my Powder and BB Cream applied easily, had a flawless finish and lasted the entire day.

Unlike the packaging of other primers that I have used I could not see how much product was left in the bottle to know when it was running low and I needed to buy another one.  This is a very minor issue though,  all I had to do was estimate and keep a back-up handy.

This product played a little trick on me though.  Based on the packaging I expected it to be a white, opague cream; it is actually a transparent gel.

Also, it doesn't leave my skin feeling like velvet like the NYX Studio Perfect Primer . That's alright though because neither did the Make Up Forever HD Primer Microperfecting Primer ($34 on Sephora's website). What matters most to me is that is does what it's supposed to.

elf you've done it again!!!!  You've earned another spot my list of products that did not disappoint.

"...because your make-up should always enhance" - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Review - MAC Mineralized Eye Cream

I have always wanted to get rid of the darkness from my under-eye area.  The darkness was not extreme but it was noticeable and I hated it.

I had grown tired of the temporary solution of using concealer and extra powder to hide it.  I have always been scared to buy products to treat the issue because they are so expensive and there was no guarantee that they would work.

MAC Mineralized Eye Cream was one of the products I selected after attending MAC Technique 2013 (Click here and here for more details).

The Sales Rep advised that it is not an instant fix, that it is supposed to work over time. The product was very expensive and it was so small. I must confess that by the time I left MAC I was overcome with doubts.  

Had I chosen wisely?

Will it really work?

Did I just waste my money?

Should I have chosen something else?

I started using this product from October 2013.  I faithfully applied it twice daily and waited patiently.  After 3 weeks I noticed that underneath my eye wasn't as dark as before.  I was so excited!!!!  This was a very encouraging sign.

It is now May 2014, 7 months have passed.  I have 1/4 of the product left and the darkness has gone.  

What a relief!

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 27 April 2014

A Different Way To Use Your Brow Pencil

Using the angle brush technique to fill my brows was working out quite well, it was the long sought after answer to my 'brow prayers'.

When I had used all of the product that was in the napkin, I started swiping my angle brush on the point of the brow pencil.  I would roll it out to approx 1/2" long to give me adequate swipe room.  Would you believe that the point broke off after a few days?  I really was not expecting that to happen, I think I was applying to much pressure with the brush.  Oh dear, what was I to do now?

I decided to place the broken point in a small container and flatten it with the handle of my angle brush to stop it from rolling around.  It worked like a dream.

Face - Iman Oil Blotting Powder, Brows - Milani Eye Pencil, Lips - Arista Purple Rain

I don't know why I didn't think of doing this before; I plan to continue to do this with my brow pencils until I find a better option.

So if you are like me and could never find a brow powder/cream/gel in a shade that matches your eyebrows, but you have a brow pencil, you can try this easy alternative and see how it works for you.

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Monday, 21 April 2014

Review - Coolway True Smooth Hair Spray Part 2

(Click  here for Part 1)

Beauties, my hair looked so good after one week  that I decided to put it to the test and see how much longer the results would last.  I am happy to report that Coolway True Smooth Hair Spray did not disappoint.

I still can't believe that my hairstyle lasted for more than a week.  It looked just as good on the final day as it looked on the first day; even though I exercised regularly during that time.  

Have a look at these photos and see for yourself.  

Day 6

Day 8

Day 11

Here is the list of make-up products that I was wearing:

Face (Day 6,8,11)
  1. e.l.f Mineral Infused Face Primer
  2. Iman Perfect Response Oil Blotting Powder - Deep
  3. e.l.f Makeup Mist & Set

Brows(Day 6,8,11)
  1. Milani Easyliner Retractable Pencil for Eyes - Espresso (applied with an angle brush)
  2. Eve.Pearl Dual Salmon Concealer & Treatment - Dark/Deep

  1. Day 6 - Bath & Body Works Liplicious Lip Gloss - CottonCandy
  2. Day 8 - NYX Mega Shine Lip Gloss - Perfect Red
  3. Day 11 - Arista Lipstick - Purple Rain
Sadly I'm not wearing blush, eyeshadow, eyeliner or mascara,  read my post Tick! Tock! I Must Beat The Clock Pt1 to find out why.

I can't help but gush about this amazing product, which has fast become one of my favourites.  I will definitely repurchase, and I recommend it to anyone who can get their hands on it. 

Don't forget to use code BeautyStat14 to receive a 10% discount on all °Coolway  purchases at (not including shipping revenue and  taxes). This item was provided for review courtesy of

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Review - Coolway True Smooth Hair Spray

When I read Beauty Stat's post about Coolway True Smooth Spray it caught my attention, it sounded too good to be true.

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There are times when I am unable to visit the salon to have my hair professionally styled.  This means that I have to do it myself and let's just say that I don't always get results that I can be proud of. If Coolway True Smooth Spray really did all the things that it promised, my hair woes would become a thing of the past.  I seized the opportunity to review this product and waited anxiously for it to arrive in the mail.  

The Sunday after I received the Coolway True Smooth Spray, I washed my hair and sprayed the product on my wet hair as recommended.  I also used some moisturizer and wrap lotion which is my normal routine.

Before -  Here I am dreading sitting under that hot dryer.


I then wrapped my hair, sat under my hood dryer and hoped for the best.  When my hair had dried, I just combed it out and I could not believe my eyes. Even though the product did not cut down on on drying time, it gave me smooth results and my hair looked salon worthy.   This is no easy feat because I have coarse, relaxed hair that has a mind  of its own.

After - Free at last and loving how my hair looks.

This style lasted the entire week, which is a first.  All I had to do was wrap it before going to sleep, apply a little moisturizer and comb it out when I was ready to leave home.  I usually have to use a curling iron every two days to maintain this style.  

Coolway True Smooth Spray is an amazing product, I am very impressed.

Use code BeautyStat14 to receive a 10% discount on all °Coolway 
purchases at (not including shipping revenue and 

This item was provided for review courtesy of

Click here to see how my hair looked on Day 6, 8 and 11.

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Review - Avon Total Radiance Solutions A.M./P.M. Dual Cleanser

When my sister gave me a two-in-one bottle of Avon Total Radiance Solutions A.M./P.M. Dual Cleanser I was so excited!!!  

From the first time I saw this type of packaging at the Avon display booths at various sales events it caught my attention because it is so unique.  It is true that our skin has different  needs first thing in the morning vs last thing at night, so I could not wait to use the Refreshing Day Cleanser and Makeup Removing Night Cleanser.

I don't usually purchase Avon skincare products because it's easier for me to just buy something from the beauty supply store.  The opportunity to test this product was not going to pass me by.

The first time I used it I realised that I was not fond of the smell, it reminded me of those hand-soaps that have a plastic, artificial smell. which I dislike immensely. I held my breath as much as possible, and tried to ignore the smell when I had to breathe. 

After washing my face it felt stiff and looked dry.  Interestingly enough, by the time I applied my make-up my skin was glowing and dewy.  This all seemed a bit strange to me, I could not believe that it was the same skin.  

I would hate to think that the cleanser intentionally dries out the skin which will result in the production of excess oils to compensate for the initial dryness.  That cannot be good for the skin, plus I prefer a matte finish.  I used it for one week to monitor the results and they were consistent during that period.  

What a shocker.  I really did not expect it to turn out like this.  The whole experience left me feeling very disappointed,  I had such high hopes in the beginning.  This one was a definite miss for me. 

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Brow Bliss

I was getting dressed for work and was applying my make-up.  While I was waiting for the e.l.f Mineral Infused Face Primer to work its magic I started filling in my eyebrows.  I don't know why I thought I could hold the concealer, concealer brush and brow pencil in the same hand at the same time.  Before long I dropped the liner and I cringed as I waited for it to hit the floor.

I feared the worst,  I had visions of the entire point breaking off.  As I picked it up I noticed that the point had not broken and I breathed a sigh of relief, but it was bent out of shape.  I rubbed it in tissue until I had a decent enough point.  As I was about to discard the tissue I looked at the amount of product that was left on it.  It was quite a bit and I felt bad about all the product that I would lose once I dumped the tissue because I am a firm believer that make-up should never be wasted.

As I thought about it mournfully I suddenly had the idea to swipe my angle brush on the product that was in the tissue and fill my brows using that.  I was shocked and pleased with the result.  My brows looked much better that when I used the pencil.  I think I might be on to something here.

The thing is, for a little while now I was dissatisfied with the rounded point of the pencil which is a challenge to work with because of the lack of precision. I have tried brow powders but I haven't found a shade dark enough that will show up on me.  I wasn't able to figure out how to get the best result from my pencil on my own, but through this mishap I stumbled upon it.

What started out as a tragedy turned into something fantastic.  I'm still trying to get used to this new technique but so far so good.

Click here to find out how to create natural looking eyebrows.

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Review - NYX Studio Perfect Primer

I remember thinking that I didn't need Foundation Primer because I did not have any fine lines or visible pores and my make-up already had a smooth, flawless finish because my skin is naturally smooth. The Iman Cream to Powder Foundation and Iman Luxury Pressed Powder I was using worked well on their own, so Foundation Primer wasn't critical to my face prep routine.   

All of this changed when I stopped wearing Foundation and only wore Powder.  I could not believe it, the Powder was not lasting.  It would disappear during the course of the day even though I was using a make-up setting spray. I was not pleased at all because I was not accustomed to having this issue. 

I was chatting with Danielle from ColourCoded Makeup about my 'powder problem'  when I visited their booth at the BMEX Trade Show, and she advised that using a primer would make a huge difference.  I had nothing to loose, so the next morning I reached for my NYX Studio Perfect Primer (the Clear one), and I'm happy to say that my make-up stayed put until I cleansed my face.

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While at BMEX I purchased a Sleek BB Cream from the Essential Trends Booth, but  unlike the Iman Cream to Powder Foundation, the BB Cream was not applying properly.  I decided to apply the NYX Studio Perfect Primer first and I no longer had that issue either.

NYX Studio Perfect Primer is a fantastic product, I say this because it did just what it promised.  What makes me love it even more is that it makes my skin feel like velvet, yes velvet and who woulldn't love velvety skin?  I must confess that every-time I apply it I keep touching my face in awe of how lovely it feels. None of the other Foundation Primers that I have used so far made my skin feel like velvet.

I have no complaints about this product, it has earned a well deserved place on my favourites list.  

I've also used elf Clear Studio Mineral Infused Face Primer,  click here for the review.

Do you use Foundation Primer? Which brand is our favourite?

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

The Key To Applying Everyday Make-up

Please, please, pleaseeeeee leave the masks for Halloween or Masquerade Balls.  For those of you who may be a bit puzzled by that statement; I'm referring to make-up that overwhelms and even hides the beauty of the person wearing it, which is not what everyday make-up is supposed to do.

I have lost count of the times my eyes have opened wide in shock or had to look quickly in the next direction as I go about my daily activities.  Foundation, concealer, powder and browliner that is plastered on so thick that it looks as though it can be scraped off is not attractive or appealing in any way.  Neither is eyeliner, eyeshadow, lipstick and blush that is applied so brightly that persons seeing it have to squint or reach for their sunglasses because it hurts their eyes.  Don't get me started on the lash extensions that are so long and thick (and sometimes sparkling) that the wearer can barely open their eyes.

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The only time make-up should be applied heavily is for stage performances, video and photo shoots because the make-up has to be visible through the harsh and unnatural lighting that is used.  Even then the final effect should still be visually appealing and appropriate for its intended purpose.

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There truly is a time and a place for all of the make-up looks that you have seen on television, the internet or in magazines.  For everyday make-up there is no need to apply your make-up so heavily and outrageously bright.

 It's time to stop showing your make-up; let the world see your beauty instead.

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If you are unsure of which colour eyeshadow or lipstick to wear with your outfit click here for some tips.

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Mirror, Mirror

So you've taken the time and effort to apply your make-up.  When you look in the mirror you should look more beautiful than you did before.

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Sadly, this is not always the case.

If the make-up you are wearing makes you look worse, this could be the result of one or more of the following reasons:

  1. the products used may be incorrect 
  2. the tools used may be incorrect 
  3. the technique used may be incorrect  

After you determine the cause, you will know if you need to get the correct products, the correct tools, if you need to improve your technique or all of the above.

If you have made wrong things right but there is no improvement, you should go to a reputable make-up professional with a good track record for assistance.

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 2 March 2014

A 'New' Way To Get Rid of Whiteheads

I still can't believe that I used all of my Beauty Formulas Pore Strips before I could get to the store to buy more. How did this even happen? I usually make sure that I am well stocked because these pesky whiteheads keep coming back.

What could I do?  How was I going to get rid of the whiteheads on my nose?

I searched the internet and found some DIY masks but I did not have all of the required ingredients.  One thing I did notice was that salicylic acid was mentioned in most of the articles that I found.  I did have a St. Ives Facial Scrub that contained that ingredient; I wondered what would happen if I used that as a mask.

I applied it to my nose and chin and left in on for 5 minutes.  I washed it off and wiped the area clean with a damp cotton ball.  Can you believe that the whiteheads were gone?  This product gave me the same results as pore strips and it was much cheaper.  I used it a few times to make sure that it was really working and I got the same results each time.

 I also tried a scrub by Biore, and that worked also.

Why was I now discovering this?  Why wasn't this additional benefit highlighted on the products' labels? I still can't believe that this solution was right in front of me for all of these years.  Now that I have 'discovered' it; pore strips will be a thing of the past for me.

Click here to find out why I don't recommend that anyone use Bodico Forehead and Chin Strips.

"...because your make-up should always enhance." - Nakita Squires

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

It's Beautiful & Unspoilt's 1st Anniversary!!!

Happy Anniversary

Happy Anniversary by n2fab featuring a red lipstick

A HUGE thanks to all of you who read/shared/commented on our posts during our first year.   
Beautifully Yours
Beautiful & Unspoilt
"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Monday, 24 February 2014

Get More Eyeshadow Colours By Doing This

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Would you believe that even though I have the FASH Professional 120 Colour Eyeshadow Palette, there was not a single colour that would be the perfect choice for two of my outfits?

And why does it have so many greens and blues when compared to the other colours?  When these large palettes first hit the scene a few years ago all of them had that 'issue', but my preferance is a more even colour distribution. When I first bought my palette I remember thinking that the 120 eyeshadows would meet all of my colour needs. I eventually realised that it would meet most of them, but why should I settle for most? I want all!!!

The colours I wanted were  violet and coral.  So what was a girl to do?  I certainly wasn't going to purchase more eyeshadows, not when I had 120 in front of me.  So I decided to put Colour Theory to the test and mix the colours I had to get the colours I wanted.

I didn't use a special formula to determine which colours to mix.  All I did was compare the colours I had with the colours I wanted:

1) violet was lighter and more red-ish' than purple but it was too dark and more 'purple-ish' than red

2) coral was looked wasn't quite pink nor orange, it looked like a bit of both

The first thing I did was apply NYX Eyeshadow Base in Skin Tone.

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For violet I applied purple and then the red on top, and for coral I applied  Sunset Pearl and then pink on top.  For each of the custom colours I kept adding a bit more of the main colours as necessary, until they were the exact shade that I wanted.

Eyeshadow Swatches 

Left to Right - Violet, Purple,Red

Left to Right - Coral, Pink,
                      Sacha Cosmetics Sunset Pearl

It was the first time that I ever did this and I knew it wouldn't be the last.

Creating custom colours is very useful when you can't find the colour that you want anywhere because  it may have been discontinued or it wasn't launched yet. Or even if you simply want to create a lighter or darker colour.  What makes this even more fantastic is that you can also do this with lip products, blush and eyeliner.

Gone are the days when I would search all of the beauty stores; only to return home empty-handed.

Imagine the endless colour possibilities available and the money you can save from mixing colours.

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

One Important Thing You Must Do When You Prep Your Face

Have you noticed that when some products are applied to the skin, it leaves your skin feeling moist/wet?

All you need to do is wait a few minutes to allow those products to absorb into your skin (i.e. your skin feels normal when you touch it) BEFORE applying the next product in your make-up routine.  This is especially important for your moisturizer, mattifier and primer which prep your face for your make-up.

If you are like me with little time to spare;  you don't have to just watch the clock while you are waiting.  I'm sure you can find some part of your daily/nightly routine to do.

Here's how it usually goes for me:

1)   While waiting for the moisturiser to dry so that I can apply primer, I apply body lotion and spritz on some perfume.  

2)   While waiting for the primer to dry so that I can apply my eyeshadow and foundation, I enhance my eyebrows with browliner.

Waiting a few minutes gives the products time to do what they are supposed to, which should result in evenly applied and lasting make-up.  I don't know anyone who wants streaky, unevenly applied make-up, do you?

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 9 February 2014

A Make-up Night Adventure

I remember everything about that night so clearly; as though it only just happened.  It was the first of its kind, and hopefully the last.

I was getting dressed for an elegant event and I was behind schedule.  All I could do when my ride arrived was to toss my essential make-up items (powder, lipstick, brow pencil, mascara, blush) into a cosmetic bag and rush through the door.

Applying make-up in traffic is nothing new, but it usually occurs during the day in slow moving traffic, not at night with the driver's foot flat on the gas pedal.  I thought to myself "this will be interesting" and it was, to say the least.

As you would imagine there was no lighting and I had to make the best of every street-light that I passed.  I waited eagerly for the moments the vehicle was forced to slow down or stop because I did not want to make any mistakes.  I cringed whenever the road got bumpy or there were potholes.

I had to be as quick as possible instead of my usual leisurely, enjoyable pace.  I created a simple make-up look, to attempt to do otherwise would have resulted in certain disaster.

Even though I could barely see what I was doing, I have applied make-up for so many years that I just did what I was accustomed doing.  When I arrived at the event I checked the mirror for the last time.  I breathed a huge sigh of relief when I realized that my make-up looked great.

"All's will that ends well" they say and after all of that excitement I was so thankful that it did end well.

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Why A Product May Work For Someone Else But Not For You

Soooo...have you ever had a make-up or skin-care related issue that you researched until you finally found someone with the same issue who raved about the product that worked for them?

Did you rush out and buy the product expecting to get the same results; only to discover that it did not work for you?

Words fail to describe how disappointing that can be, especially if the product is expensive.  If it worked for them, shouldn't it work for you too?  The reality is that sometimes it will, and other times it won't.

While there is no 'magic formula' that will predict whether or not a product will work for you,  here are some questions that you can ask that should help:
  1. Do you have the same skin type? e.g. Oily, Normal, Dry, Combination
  2. Do you live in the same type of climate? e.g. Caribbean, U.S.A, U.K
  3. Is your lifestyle the same? Athletic, hectic, relaxed, indoors vs outdoors
  4. Is your issue of the same severity or is it milder? e.g slight vs extreme undereye darkness   
If the answer to just one of these questions is no, it could affect how well the product works for you.

So take the time to answer the questions; doing this has helped me, and I hope that it will help you too.

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Consider This When Buying Your Make-up Brushes

When buying make-up brushes in the past I would usually just check that it was the type of brush that I wanted, and go straight to the cashier.

That worked most of the time, but a few times I ended up with brushes that were too big for my face. Seeing a brush in its packaging is one thing, but when I used the brushes to apply my make-up I realised something wasn't right.  This happened with my blending brush and blush brush.


Shouldn't any sized brush work on any face?  The answer is maybe, but you will have to get a little creative.

When I first used the brushes; I had to do a lot of wiping off to remove the excess product. I soon grew tired of this and started using the corner or the tip of the brush to ensure that too much product was not applied to my face.

So these days  I also consider the size of the brush to make sure that it is the correct size for my face. Thankfully, most brushes are currently available in a variety of sizes. Sometimes I even have to buy a brush of a different type, once it has the same shape and type of bristles as the brush that I need.  In fact, many times I have walked out of the store empty handed because the brush was too big for me.  This happened when I was trying to find a concealer brush for my under-eye area.   It took a while before I found one, but my E.L.F Essential Concealer Brush was worth the effort.

So for those of you who find that your brushes are too large or too small, you may need to check another store or another brand to find the right size brush for you.  It's out there somewhere, you just have to take the time to find it.

From my personal kit - brushes and face products

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 19 January 2014

The First Thing To Consider When Recreating Make-Up Looks

I remember trying and trying to recreate make-up looks when I was younger.  But no matter how closely I followed the instructions, my make-up never came out the way it was supposed to.  Especially for applying eye-shadow(especially the infamous smokey eye) and blush.

I just could not understand why this was happening.

Deep in thought (no make-up)

And then one day it just dawned on eyelids and cheeks were different to the ones in the picture or video!!!! Suddenly everything began to make sense.  I realised that all of my efforts had been in vain, that I had been trying to do the impossible.

I remember applying vibrant eye-shadow to my entire lid and thinking "this looks so ridiculous" or even "I look like I am wearing a superhero eye-mask".  And what about the traditional smokey eye? All of that black eye-shadow had me looking like someone gave me a black-eye. I have a large eyelid, enough to share, I kid you not.  These days I use a neutral eye-shadow on 3/4 of my eyelid and just add a hint of colour to my lower lid.  For the smokey eye, green, blue and purple look much better on me.

Don't let me get started about the blush.  Smile and apply to the apples of your cheek I've been told. Well when I stop smiling, the apples of my cheek fall to somewhere near my mouth - NOT a good look.  I prefer to apply my blush to my cheek bone and/or just under my cheek bone, depending on if I am highlighting/contouring.

Now the first thing I do now before rushing off to recreate a look is to check for similarities and differences. Then I make sure that I can adapt the technique if needed before I even think about reaching for my make-up.

The reality is that many times techniques have to be modified to make them work for you.   I see them as more of a starting point/guide than a 'one-size fits all' because quite a few factors will influence the outcome of your efforts.  So please, please, please don't worry if your results differ,  what's more important is that they enhance your beauty.

If only I had figured this out sooner..., but that is one of the fun things about make-up.  There are always things to discover and to learn.

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 12 January 2014

How To Rock Pantone's 2014 Colour of the Year Radiant Orchid

Heyyyyy, it's time to get out your colour wheels, if you haven't done so already.

For those of you who may be wondering why, it's because we have left Emerald Green behind us in 2013, and now according to PantoneRadiant Orchid awaits us in 2014.

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To make the most of this trend we need to know how to coordinate our make-up with our outfits.  With regards to beauty, Pantone's Press Release describes Radiant Orchid as 'a captivating, magical, enigmatic purple' that 'enlivens the skin...making the wearer feel more healthy and energetic'.  It is 'seductive when combined with red' and 'pairs well with...lavender, purple and pink'.

Inspirationail's article What To Wear With Purple also gives some excellent tips.

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Here's a bonus tip: No Radiant Orchid make-up? No Problem!   You  may be able to create the colour using the make-up products that you already have.

So let's enjoy Radiant Orchid as it reigns supreme for 2014!

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Review - E.l.f. Makeup Mist & Set

I love E.l.f., they offer quality for a low price - talk about a steal of a deal.

All of the E.l.f. products and tools that I have tried (brushes, eyeshadowbrush shampoo) perform just as good or even better than some of the more expensive brands on the market.  Click here for my opinion of expensive makeup vs affordable makeup.  Is one really better or worse than the other?

I am impressed with their Mist & Set, it feels refreshing and it works.

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The first time I wore it I had to run errands all day in the hot sun which is the ultimate test for me.  I was so happy when I realised that my make-up survived.

I'll admit that sometimes I get carried away when I am spraying it on and I have to stop myself from wasting the product, it feels that good on my skin.

It is a welcome change from Graftobian Make-up Setting Spray and reminds me of Make-up Forever Mist & Fix.  Click here for my review of Graftobian Make-up Setting Spray and Make-up Forever Mist & Fix.

E.l.f. you never cease to impress me, I plan to try as many of your products as I can.

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

NYX Pecan Blush Y U No...?

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I'm not happy with my NYX Pecan Blush; at least not yet.

I love to see a cheek highlight, it makes me feel all warm and tingly inside.  I bought NYX Pecan Blush to create that effect, but so far no good.

After applying multiple layers before it shows on my skin tone, I then have to brush, and brush, AND BRUSH because it does not blend into my skin - it just sits there sticking out like a sore thumb.  All of that brushing makes it look a bit better, but I still do not get the desired effect.  It is so unlike my Sleek Blush By 3 Pink Sprint which applies like a dream.

I've used my angled blush brush, and lately I've been using my Eco Tools Custom Coverage Buffing Brush but the results are the same.

I am now in 'Make-up Problem Solver Mode' and my mind is working overtime trying to find a solution.  A few options have popped into my thoughts and I plan to try them all because I refuse to let my money and product go to waste.

I shall not rest until I get my NYX Pecan Blush to work the way it is supposed to.  Stay tuned...

"...because your make-up should always BE (Blend and Enhance)." - Nakita Squires