Best Bets: March 2012

Beauty Balms are the talk of the industry right now. They hydrate, provide sun protection and add light diffusing pigments, upping your glow and radiance, which starts from within, mind you. I’ve found one that I’m having a bit of a flirtation with. Too Faced Tinted Beauty Balm in Beach Glow is helping me transition from winter pallor to an “I just got back from an impulsive weekend getaway in a warm climate.” I mixed two erase-sized dollops with my moisturizer and found less was more. My face felt moisturized all day.

Another transitional product from winter to spring is Make Up For Ever’s La Boheme Aqua Eyes in Gypsy. It’s a warm cocoa hue that allows me to back away from the black liner for a bit, without sacrificing my desire to darken my eyes and my waterline. Bonus: You can smudge it on your top lid and it’ll double as a shadow.

Another new MAC launch has me thrilled! The company’s new East Asia-inspired Too Supreme lip gloss is like manna from makeup heaven. Sheen Supreme Lipglass in encased in a chic, click-style pen. We’ve been waiting for MAC to attempt a gloss pen, and it’s some of the glossiest shine known to woman. Snatch up several and hope these become a permanent part of the MAC repertoire.

We tipped readers off to Exude, the Rachel Zoe-endorsed lipstick that’s housed in a clear, plastic bullet, meaning no cracks and no breaks. Even better, no lint or gunk from your pocket or handbag will get stuck to the bullet should your cap come loose, last year. It’s foolproof. Just twist the tube and apply like your regular ol’ lipstick. Well, the line has issued some new stunning shades of this creamy, shiny miracle. Color I’m in love with? Coral. Exude also comes in gloss form and it’s shiny is as shiny does. I can’t keep my hands off Crimson, a rich red which is normally not my shade of choice, but it’s utterly wearable.

Can I get an “amen” over the fact that Sara Happ, also profiled in our monthly “In the Hot Seat” column last year, has released her The Lip Slip (One Luxe Balm) in tube form as One Luxe Gloss. It is the richest, shiniest, angel pink balm I’ve found in my travels, and trust me, I am on a constant hunt for a Holy Grail of gloss. The only drawback was the pot form, which meant the extra step of using an anti-bac hand sanitizer before and after I applied. Now it’s in a shinier tube form and I’m in the throes of lip gloss nirvana.

Is there nothing Josie Maran can’t do with her eponymous line? Her Argan Beautiful Eyes palette in Beautiful Smoke is packaged in a rose gold case, with spring appropriate chocolate and silver shadows (and a template on how to use it on the back.) It’s luxe and versatile, and utterly MUST.OWN.NOW.

Next time you head over to Duane Reade or CVS for whatever pharmaceuticals or incidentals you need, stop at the Maybelline aisle and nab two or three Master Precise by Eye Studio Eye Liner in Black. Again, I’ve tried every marker and gel/cream formulation with brush combo to achieve the flawless black cat eye and this is the BEST I’ve ever used. It doesn’t budge, while the 0.44 mm tip is thin enough to allow for a perfect line on my upper lash and it dries in nanoseconds. Stock up on 10 since they are so affordable.

Valentine’s Day is in the rear view, but love isn’t, especially when it comes to Lancome‘s new Rouge In Love lipsticks, which promise six-hours of lasting color in 21 shades. There’s something for everyone, without the chalky texture that comes with some endurance lipsticks. The colors are also fresh and youthful, so if you want to stain your pout and then top with gloss, go for it. The line is organized in to three collections – Jolis Matins (natural shades ideal for morning), Boudoir Time (punchy hues for the late afternoon) and Tonight Is My Night (intense colors perfect for a night on the town)– and if you haven’t fallen truly, madly and deeply in love with this formulation, then we’ll call you crazy. I love when lipstick adheres to my lips, not to the rim of my Starbucks cup (containing a green tea latte with skim, in case you were curious.) Another perfect product from Lancome.

Squeezable mascara? Don’t roll your eyes. Make-Up Designory, which has two makeup schools (one in Los Angeles and one in New York), has launched mascara in a squeeze tube, since pumping your mascara wand causes the remaining substance to dry out, shortening the life of the product, and this squeeze tube is less likely to spoil or create waste. There is not much a difference from a regular tube, other than the squeeze design, which is meant to keep product fresh. I love the texture and the thickness of the cream version of the black mascara. Like love with the passion of a thousand suns. My lashes looked and felt doubly thick.

If you hit Express for your basics – black tees, dresses, jeans- then be sure and check out the Spring 2012 Runway Makeup Palette. The kit mixes high-end glam with street style, two things we love here at Beauty News. The eye shadows – Mossy Green, Smoked Violet, Frosted Cream and Cobalt – are all complimentary. That, combined with a blush and a baby pink gloss, means you can toss this palette in your tote to transition flawlessly and with ease after work.

All the typing on my Blackberry keypad and my MAC Book Pro is murder on my mani. Even though I prefer dark hues, I forego them on my fingers in favor of nudes and neutrals since they are more forgiving come chip time, which is usually two to three days later. Well, when the head honchos at Cutex stopped by my office to personally hand over Baseworx, I promptly put it in my bag so I could have my manicurist use it next time. Smart move on my part, because my mani lasted a few days longer. True to its marketing tag, it’s not just another basecoat. We don’t need more basecoats. We need the basecoat and Cutex got it right, thanks to the bio-ceramic technology. In simple science terms, Baseworx employs fine powder that bonds to keratin in nails. It also fills ridges and masks imperfections. The product is available at select mass retailers next month, with a wider rollout planned down the road. In the meantime, I’m using it at every mani and pedi until there isn’t drop left in the bottle. Added bonus: It’s clean, natural and shiny and can be worn on its own.

Oh, and while we have you have you here and we’re talking nails, The Hunger Game hits theaters this month and China Glaze is celebrating with an exclusive Colors From the Capitol collection that retails at Sally Beauty. The collection is quite true to its source material, as the hues match the twelve districts is represented, with a different shade inspired by the characteristics explained in the trilogy. From a shimmery black from District 12 to neon red from District 3, you won’t be able to wait to get your hands on these polishes. The brushes have 220 strands, so application is flaw to the less! Recommended for cool moms and fashion forward daughters.

Kate Moss is a golden goddess on the cover of the latest issue of W but she’s still accessible. How so? Well, the newlywed has created her first-ever lipstick collection for Rimmel. The Lasting Finish Lipstick By Kate Moss offers full-coverage, “doesn’t move” color. The Black Diamond Pigment complex is also added to the formula, which really does hug lips. When the color began to fade, my lips till looked rich and stained. The packaging is so chic, like the woman whose red signature is featured on the matte black case. 01 is a deep, brick red for daring gals, while 08 is a dusty rose that looks good on even lighter skintones without washing them out.

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