Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Beauty Bargain: Bejeweled Eyes

So I've decided that for this magical month of December, in the spirit of joy and giving and vegan eggnog, I will be spilling the secrets of  many more of my favorite beauty bargains and favorite products!  These make great treats for your most glamorous holiday party self, as well as excellent gifts that your friends and family will actually use and cherish.  And today we will be starting with this alchemical blue jewel-toned eye shadow, the perfect color of a shimmering peacock's tail, that kept popping up in Fall and Spring Runway shows this year:

Jeremy Scott Runway Spring 2013
Anna Sui Fall Runway 2012
Joy Cioci Runway Spring 2013
Joy Cioci Runway Spring 2013

Moschino Cheap and Chic Runway Spring 2013

I LOVE adore and worship blue jewel-toned eyeshadows, I think they are incredibly flattering on everyone and every skin tone, and they make the perfect festive holiday eye.  I often find that blue eyeshadows reduce the appearance of redness in and around the eye, so if you have been over-indulging or under-sleeping this season, this is the eyeshadow for you!  And yes, drumroll, this is another beauty bargain.  This L'Oreal HIP Studio Secrets Eye Shadow Duo in Showy combines the perfect jewel tone blues, and you can use them together or separately.  I have had this little duo forever, and it is still gorgeously bright and shiny.  And it's $7.99Contrast that with the equivalent Nars shades below...

HiP Studio Secrets Professional Bright Shadow Duos in Showy $7.99 your local drugstore or drugstore.com


NARS Single Eye Shadow in Tropic $24.00 Sephora.com
NARS Single Eye Shadow in Outremer $24.00 Sephora.com

Total Savings With L'Oreal HiP Studio Secrets Professional Bright Shadow Duos: $40.00!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

And the Winner is...

Today we had a lucky winner of the Korres Lip Butter Glaze contest...


She'll be receiving a FREE Korres Lip Butter in the color of her choice.

Stay tuned for our next unbelievably fabulous giveaway....

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Z is for...Zac

Surprisingly enough my first favorite collection on the Spring 2012 Runway is a little spinoff brand, Z Zpoke by Zac Posen.  In what can only be described as a collaboration of genius, Zac's frothy, witty, vintage-worshipping frocks are modeled by the incomparable Coco Rocha, who grins, laughs, poses, preens and pouts like a fairy-tale princess version of Betty Boop.  Adorable!  I want every one of these dresses....


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Beauty Bargains: Black Radiance Purple Passion

Black Radiance Purple Passion (5004) Lipstick $1.99 your local drugstore

Is there such a thing as a true beauty bargain?  It's a staple beloved of fashion magazines, who always show us the "luxe" version and the "less" version, and usually the "less" version is actually very much less desirable than the unbelievably expensive version.  However, I am going to spill some true beauty bargains in this blog...bargains which I feel live every bit and morsel up to their more expensive counterparts.  

My first beauty bargain is Black Radiance "Purple Passion" Lipstick.  I wore this lipstick today for two auditions and got lots of compliments!  It's fuchsia, but don't panic gentle readers, fuchsia lips have been resurrected from their poor 80's reputation.  If you wear fuchsia lips with a clean face or a smoky eye, they look quite wondrously fresh.

Don't believe me?  A little extemporaneous proof:

Pink lips on the Giles Spring Runway 2013 (also I need these sunglasses!  Perfect for all those times I want to be inconspicuously incognito)

Rochas Spring 2013 Runway, a pot of magic pink

Emily Blunt, rocking fuchsia and green, you are my hero

Black Radiance lipstick must be the biggest bargain of all.  I've had mine for more years than is hygienic to admit, and it has stayed fresh, non-drying, and incredibly lustrous.  Purple Passion is a shade that's a little hot pink, a little fuchsia, and a whole lot bold and sexy and fresh (or rather sweetly cow-maiden on the heath if you were it with clean skin and pink cheeks).  It looks great on porcelain skin as well as dark skin.  If you layer it with red lip gloss, it makes a beautiful, jewel-worthy pink-red.  It stays and lasts more than most lipsticks, and it is $1.99.  $1.99!  That's my parking meter change!

Black Radiance Purple Passion (5004) Lipstick $1.99 your local drugstore


Nars Lipstick in Funny Face $24.00 Sephora.com
The closest shade I could find to my beloved Purple Passion is Nars Lipstick in Funny Face...its's a similar hot pink/fuchsia and it's $24.00.  Total savings with Black Radiance: $22.00.

Friday, October 5, 2012

An Outfit for Every Occasion

As we all know, there must be a proper, practical outfit for every occasion, as this quick scan of the Spring Ready-to-Wear Runway 2013 proves...

Paco Rabanne Spring 2013
The perfect outfit when I need to throw on something to walk to my corner Bristol Farms to buy some soy milk..

Ann Demeulemeester Spring 2013
 Absolutely essential for my next audition as a vampire queen....

Julien Macdonald Spring 2013
A very good ensemble for pysching myself up to overcome my dental phobias and finally go to the dentist to get my teeth cleaned...

Libertine Spring 2013
Two all-purpose outfits for celebrating friend's birthdays and arguing with landlords about rent.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

FREE Korres Lip Butter!

Tell your friends and spread the word...the next 50 new followers of my blog will be entered into a drawing to win a FREE Korres lip butter glaze in the color of her choice!  This award-winning, eco-friendly, moisturizing lip butter comes in gorgoeus colors and is perfect for dry lips in this hot weather.  In order to win, your friend must become a follower of my fabulous (tooting my horn here) blog and send me an email at amandacallas@hotmail.com.  I will notify the winner by email.  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Luscious and Long-Lasting Lips for Fall

Ava Gardner, resplendent as always, in the perfect fall face (or anytime face, really!)
Summer refuses to do die this year, hoarding its final blasts of hellish heat until the last, as we all limp along and wonder when can we finally start wearing our fall clothes?  Our cunning tweeds, our sentimental lace, our school-girl skirts and our beloved boots?

It is only in our makeup that we can embrace a little of the crisp, jewel-pure tones that we normally love to wear in the early days of fall.

Everyone knows I am completely addicted to red lipstick, especially this time of year.  I'm always trying to convert friends and clients into realizing how glamorous and easy and flattering it is, with a shade for every skin tone and mood.  The only flaw in red is how quickly it fades; how eager it is to share itself with your napkins and glasses and friend's cheeks, until there's little left but that What-Happened-To-Baby-Jane-ish reddish-pink smear. 

So off to Sephora I go, exploring some staple and some brand-new long-lasting and utterly luscious reds...at least my lips are ready for fall!

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Beso $22.00 Sephora.com
Stila's All Day Liquid Lipstick comes in a thick texture that it is somewhere between a stain and a gloss.  It's an utterly ravishing color, incredibly brilliant, in a true red shade that recalls those glorious, rich, Technicolor shades of the 1930's-1950's.  It's my favorite color of all the reds I tried.  It has remarkable staying power.  It's only downside, like many long-lasting reds, is that it does feel a bit drying.  I applied a little lip balm over it which helped add a little moisture.

Kat Von D Foiled Love Liquid Lipstick in Hellbent $19.00 Sephora.com

Of all the liquid lipsticks, this one definitely earns points for originality.  It goes on wet and then in a minute or so transforms into a dry, powdery finish.  It has a completely metallic, foil-like texture with a hint of gold, that looks as if you painted your lips.  Hellbent (what a glorious name for these brutally hot days!) is a very deep, burlesque-dancer red with a whisper of maroon.  It's marvellously artificial and rather sinful.  VERY drying.

Urban Decay Lip Envy in Greedy-Berry $17.00 Sephora.com
This is a red that has deep notes of berry and cabernet and purple, and it colors your lips the most extraordinary shade that is an instant conversion to goth.  The moment I put this on I looked ten shades paler and rather glam in a dark sort of way.  It has a strange, appealing fragrance, and a very willful staying power.  It's a true lip stain, and it's medium drying.

Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick in Raven $28.00 Sephora.com
This one is very, very similar to the Stila liquid lipstick, with a medium-thick texture and a stain-like brilliance and depth of color.  It's more of an orange-red than a true red.  It's a tad more drying than the Stila.

per-fekt Lip Perfection Gel in Hollywood $24.00 Sephora.com
Saving the best for last, this lip gel is from the cult-line per-fekt, which the Beverly Center Sephora has recently started stalking (oh, all right, stocking!).  Per-fekt is a celebrity favorite, and you can see why: their products are about understated, long-lasting beauty with a glow.   This lip gel is something between a lip gloss and a liquid lipstick, and it's a very rich shade for its moist texture.  Of all these products, it is the least drying, but it has an impressive staying powder.  It's a lovely, ultra-flattering true red, not as a brilliant as the Stila shade, it's a bit more "natural" looking and would probably suit more occasions and complexions.  My lips are so parched in this weather and they loved, loved this product. 

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Single Thing that Ages You

So people ask me a lot, when I'm doing headshots or image-consulting, what is the thing that ages a person the most?  And the answer might surprise you....

It's hair!  Seriously.  Yes, dear readers, those innocent little follicles of protein can turn into fatal follies.  Often the culprit is hair that has not changed style as times have changed.  Every woman in her 70's wears her hair in the rinsed, blue-tinged, short-cropped curls of the 50's, and baby boomers like to wear their hair 70's-style center-parted with bangs.  There are women stuck in the 80s and 90s, and men stuck with 'stashes and mullets and dingy beards.  Hair that is excessively styled and stiff, First Lady / newscaster style is very aging, but so are blunt, short cuts and bobs.   

OLD: Fashion model Agyness Deyn is only 29, but looks positively matronly in stiff blueish-blonde waves.  Is it a deliberate dip into middle-age by this frocliksome young thing, famous for her Armani campaign?

YOUNG: And back to her 20s in a slightly warmer blonde and a fierce punk cut!
OLD: The shades of blonde are a little off for her skin; the conversative, heavily styled bob gives her a middle-aged vibe

YOUNG: Radiant in soft, tousled, carefree curls and a warm, buttery gold that makes her skin creamy

Both men and women, as they age, should usually avoid harsh, cool tones of white-blond and blue-black, and instead should seek out hair colors that have a lot of warmth and subtle variation, tones of buttery gold in the lighter shades and warm eggplant and chocolate in the darker shades.  I recommend consulting with an excellent hair colorist and a good image-consultant or stylist (such as moi, I will add immodestly!).

OLD:  Christina is very cute in all her looks, and part of me really likes this, but blue-black bobs with choppy bangs can be a little aging and are generally best avoided if you're not Edith Head

YOUNG: Tones of cinammon and honey flatter her skin; bouncy waves take the years off and bring back her sex appeal

OLD: I dare you to find a picture of the lovely Jennifer where she actually looks bad, but the cool, dull brunette is a little harsh, and the stiff curls look conservative and maybe a little too grown-up for her

YOUNG: Back to caliente and young in warm, shiny caramel and a light cut with lots of movement
Dull, flat or frizzy hair ages; males and females can take 10 years off with a superior hair masque or leave-in conditioner that leaves hair full and shiny.  After samping more conditioners than Madonna has sampled back-up dancers, I most highly recommend this good stuff: 
Neuma is my favorite line of ultra-moisturizing, pampering hair goodness, with no animal testing/products or scary stuff, committed to sustainility and smelling great!  Leave in the moisturizing conditioner; it will tame your frizz and give you silky, shiny, bouncy hair.  Just watch out for the envy!  I buy it from Shades salon on Doheny Drive in Beverly Hills.  You can read about this great brand at: http://www.neumabeauty.com/ 

Also be sure you are getting enough oils in your diet; nuts, avocadoes, seeds, flaxseed, and olive oil.  I particularly recommend this olive oil, it reminds me of the peppery, divine oil I had at a villa in the countryside of Tuscany, and it will be the best medicine you have ever tasted!  Italians like to take a tablespoon or two in the morning as preventive care.  Good olive oil should be cloudy, a rich, viscuous green, and have lots of pepper, spice, and mineral in the taste.  It should have a real kick, like whisky, and burn your throat a little.  Be sure to store it in a dark cupboard so it doesn't oxidize.

Paesano Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Unfiltered, Hand-Picked, Estate Grown in Siciliy