This is the Real Reason you Should be Wetting your Beauty Blender

We’ve all been there: sat down ready to do our makeup and realising one very important thing is missing… a freshly-wet beauty blenderCommence the angry trudge to the sink to wet, squeeze and repeat. 

But despite how often this happens – in my case, a little more than I’m proud of – do we know why we’re supposed to wet our beauty blenders? Like, really know why? It turns out, apparently not. 

I’ve always thought you should wet your beauty blender because when damp and spongey, it reaches your face’s little nooks and crannies, as well as helps different products blend together. And while this may hold some truth – after all, spongey = flexible – there is a more technical reason you should wet your beauty blender.

And that is because the water stops the beauty blender from absorbing product.

“The reason beautyblender works best when wet is because water helps it reach its absorption capacity,” says beautyblender founder, Rea Ann Silvan. “- so it won’t absorb your makeup!”

To prove this, beautyblender advises cutting an old sponge in half when wet. The result? Well, 2 halves of a whole beauty blender, and an open core that shows no product on the inside – just pure colour.

But that’s not all wetting your trusty sponges is good for. According to Silva, a wet blender means “your makeup [will] bounce on beautifully with no lines or brush stroke marks.”

So, while I’m not a total eejit for thinking wetting my beauty blender was a concept developed to aid contouring, it’s good to know there’s a technical logic behind the urban beauty legend.

It’s just a shame they don’t come pre-wet like this cool little guy…

Images sourced from @beautyblender Instagram.

A Look Into Beauty Bay’s EYN Bright Collection

When Beauty Bay launched their first own-brand eyeshadow palettes in September 2018, I thought to myself I’ll have to try those. Finally, over a year later, I got around to it. And I can confirm that Beauty Bay weren’t messing about. After trying their EYN Bright 9 Colour Palette, I am obsessed.

The EYN Bright 9 Colour Palette is a modest collection of rainbow-hued eyeshadows. It has shimmer, glitter and matte formulas in an array of colours, and funky shade names to match. Processed with VSCO with dog1 presetDescribing the palette, Beauty Bay promised that all of the shades are blendable and highly-pigmented for soft and subtle or bold and eye-catching looks alike. And IMO, they delivered. The pigment and durability of all the shades in the 9 colour palette is STRONG. Once I had swatched the shades, I couldn’t wait to get creative.

My Look

I used the EYN Bright 9 Colour Palette to create a blue-pink-purple look with a bright lid. I started by applying Tutti Frutti, a salmon pink matte, across my crease and upper eyelid with a large blending brush. I then deepened the pink base by using Spectrum Collections’ A07 brush to darken my crease with Surrel Strawberry, a strawberry pink matte.Processed with VSCO with dog1 presetAfter creating a pink base, I took Blue Vibes, a deep blue shade, to my crease with the BH Cosmetics 103 Small Shader brush. I very slightly blended it into the top of my eyelid and to the outer corner of my eye to add some dimension.

For the eyelid, I simply applied Lagoon, a teal shimmer, to the middle and inner corner of my eyelid with my fingertip. I am really loving ‘messy’ and loose make-up looks recently. Not only do they look good, but they take the stress out of trying to create a precise look like a cut crease or halo-eye.Processed with VSCO with dog1 presetAnd to complete the bright eye look, I applied Candid Candyfloss, a light pink shimmer, to my brow bone and inner corner with the Spectrum Collections A12 Fluffy Pencil brush.

On my eyelashes I wore Benefit’s Bad Gal Bang mascara – my firm second favourite to Roller Lash. On my lips I wore Jouer Cosmetics’ High Pigment Lip Gloss in the shade Beverly. I chose a gloss that had a bright strawberry-pink tone similar to the initial pink base I created with EYN palette. Big up co-ordination.Processed with VSCO with dog1 presetIf the EYN Bright 9 Colour Palette is anything to judge by, Beauty Bay’s entire EYN Bright collection shares the same levels of pigment pay-off as brands like Juvia’s Place and Violet Voss.

My favourite shade from the 9 colour palette is undeniably Lagoon. The shimmer’s pay-off, as I hope comes through in the pictures, was on Jeffree Star highlighter levels – BLINDING. Even when applied with a fingertip, Lagoon’s pay-off was smooth and blendable, but intense.

After trying Beauty Bay’s 9 colour EYN Bright palette, I intend on upping my rainbow-hue dosage from 9 to 42 ASAP.

Shop the 9 shade palette here: https://www.beautybay.com/p/beauty-bay/eyn-bright-matte-9-colour-palette/ and the rest of the EYN Bright collection on http://www.beautybay.com.

What To Wear When Getting Glam

Applying make-up is an intimate event with an exclusive guest list. It’s just you, your products and the reflection in the mirror.

Your reflection doesn’t gossip about the coffee-stained oversized top or rotten dressing gown you choose to wear to the event. It doesn’t tell anyone you didn’t even bother to get dressed after the shower and instead sit there in a towel with one hand to keep the towel up (because you have enough class to not flash to the mirror) and the other trying to blend.

It’s almost the most intimate event in the world. That’s not to discredit the times that you make effort to be a little less gross. But most times you think fuck it, the end result will never tell of my current state.

A Revelation

A revelation for me was discovering that keeping the glam energy of a finished full face during application is revolutionary. Taking a minute to put on something a little classier than your go-to rotten outfit – creating fancy foundations to do your make-up on – changes everything.

And therefore, I suggest turning up your getting-ready game with a bralette. Bralettes are as fancy as they are comfortable, making them the perfect piece to get glam in.

Fancy dressing while doing make-up creates grounds for you to start feeling good before the glam has even begun. It means you look and feel good throughout the process and sets the tone for you to feel confident during the night/day. Feeling fancy means feeling confident – its simple science.

The Best Bralettes

And of course, it has to be Boux Avenue for your bralette fix. Giving you luxe lace, delicate silk and classic satin, their range is unparalleled. My personal fav is the Tori lace plunge bra. Its comfortable, classy and colourful.  Processed with VSCO with dog3 presetI no longer wear a freshly fake-tan soaked XXL t-shirt when applying make-up. I wear a bralette and some loose joggers. I always worried about fallout product on my bottoms but there’s a simple solution to this – plain black joggers from PLT or ASOS. £20 and worth every second of getting into glam mode.

For your bralette fix on Boux Avenue, be sure to use my discount code JOSIEOBOUX20 for 20% off. And get back to me with your verdict on whether fancy beginnings are your new way to go when getting glam.

A Bit Of Naranja

Orange radiates a niche glamour only held by vivid colours. I’m aware that it doesn’t cause the riot that neon green and fuchsia have proven to be capable of, but doesn’t that make it more stylistically ideal? Orange gives a nod to modernity while embracing the every-day ordinary. 

It’s not a colour here to ruffle feathers or knock new-in neon off it’s throne. Yeezy haven’t drowned Kim K in it, so fast fashion and beauty brands haven’t exhausted it – yet. 

But I do prefer the Spanish word naranja over orange. The extra syllable adds a bit of flair that better represents the pizzazz that the colour possesses. I translated this flair onto my eyelids.
Processed with VSCO with dog3 preset

2 Shades of Orange

I wanted my look to be a matte orange only – no crease-deepening browns or lid-enhancing glitters. Which meant that I only used the two orange shades on BH Cosmetics’ Take Me Back To Brazil Palette.Processed with VSCO with c1 presetI laid a base with the lighter orange shade with the Spectrum Collections B06 tall tapered brush, buffing out the colour and covering my lid. I then packed on the darker orange over my lid with the CO6 brush from the same Spectrum eye set.

The CO6 Tulip brush is my favourite because it’s ideal for contouring as well as packing on colour. The versatility is all down to it’s dome-like shape.Processed with VSCO with dog3 preset
I did a soft look all over my skin to match the ease of orange, opting for dewy complexion with NARS Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation and a subtle highlight by Pixi Beauty.

A major discovery I made in the composition of this look is that an ashy brown lipstick with a warm gloss on top matches orange eye-shadow.

So, I used my all-time favourite liquid lipstick and shade, Jeffree Star Cosmetics Velour Liquid Lipstick in ‘Posh Spice’, and patted on Pat McGrath Labs Clear Gloss (unfortunately no longer on sale) with my finger. Finger application was necessary because I wanted my lips to be dewy like my skin rather than light-catching glossy.

In make-up, orange is an ideal colour to chase because it is close to the burnt tradition that we all know and love (read about that here). It takes burnt and removes the dust, leaving a bright colour that is easier to style and easier to love. 

 

What ‘Burnt’ Means To Beauty

In the real world, the term ‘burnt’ implies scorched. We think of a hazy-morning toast mishap or blocks of wood crumbling to ash. Yet, these ideas have not transpired into the beauty world.

In the beauty world, ‘burnt’ means deep oranges and tangy browns. And the beauty of this trend lies with two things: its versatility and its similarity to the classic smoky eye.

Versatility

The ever-annoying rules of this-suits-this-eye-colour or this-suits-this-skin-tone don’t apply to burnt eye-shadow. All you need is some fluffy brushes and eye-lids concealed a few shades lighter than your skin tone.

You can dip your toe into the trend with a light dusting of a muted orange in your crease. But you can also kick start a journey of mastery by creating a skilfully-blended medley of muted oranges, tangy browns, exuberant oranges and dark browns. The beauty of burnt is that it grants opportunities alike of soft-glam or GLAM-glam.

Imitating The Ever-Classic Smoky Eye

A burnt eye is often created in the likeness of the classic smoky-eye… without the tonal severity. Many of its looks start light with a muted-orange base before adding darker colours to the crease and outer-corner to build intensity. And what makes it so close to the smoky eye is how often its wearers extend the shadow onto the lower lash line for ultimate heat.

And just like the smoky eye, you must decide what you want the look to demand. Is it intricate analysis from observers or a deep eyelid crease for the illusion of larger eyes?

However, achieving the perfect level of burnt with orange and tangy shades anxiously toes the line with festival-esque eye-shadow. So, for this trend, choosing the right palette is more important than ever. Think Urban Decay’s Naked Heat, Juvia’s Place’s The Saharan palettes or Beauty Bay’s Saffron Barker collection.Processed with VSCO with dog1 presetOr think Violet Voss’s Hashtag Palette – my unwavering go-to for the burnt eye. And in true imitation of the smoky eye, I used the BH Cosmetics Smokey Eye Essentials brush collection to create this look.Processed with VSCO with c1 presetI started with dusting ‘Sauce’ all over the lid with No.1, a large blending brush. This brown created a smooth base for me to go over with the same brush in the shade ‘Savage’ to create a tangy but neutral base.

I then dusted ‘Goals’ in the crease with No.2, a small tapered brush, and blended it out in circular motions. And for intensity, the more precise No.3 brush allowed me to carve out my crease with ‘G.O.A.T’ and then the outer-corner with brush No.5, BH Cosmetics’s best smudging brush.

For intensity, repeat the process. And to finish, I put on Tiggy Lashes in the style ‘Natalie.’ I personally don’t wear eyeliner with burnt looks because I like the colours to speak for themselves.Processed with VSCO with dog1 presetIf the smoky eye is your thing and you’re looking to broaden your colour choice, turn to burnt. It’s time that, amidst neutrality captivating the beauty world’s focus, burnt overtakes smoky.

And for tips on how to achieve the perfect burnt eye look through brush mastery, be sure to read my guide on the essentials to eye-shadow blending here. Have a fab NYE!

Jeffree Star Cosmetics Blood Sugar Palette Review

If I am going to write a review of a Jeffree Star product, shall I do so in the enchanting style that he speaks? Should I have opened this piece with “Good morrr-ning!” or “Hey girl, how are YA?”

I can’t help but feel that his personality comes through in his products. Vibrant, questionable colour choices at times, but unfailingly impressive. So should his personality come through in a review about his products? It could be a good stance to take.

The Palette

The Blood Sugar Palette is arguably Jeffree’s most famous, selling out after 3 minutes of release in February. Lucky for us, it finally restocked in October – and biiiiiiiiitch, it was worth the wait.Processed with VSCO with s3 presetThe eye-shadow comes in a red faux leather box with metal clasps and it is HEAVY. Just like Jeffree, I love a heavy product. Heavy screams luxury, moneys-worth and no pigment spared… generally speaking. I have never been taken aback by packaging before, but the presentation of Blood Sugar forced me to take a moment.

It soon became obvious that the formulas of the eye-shadows were worthy of every feeling of luxury the packaging gave. The payoff is unbelievable. I can’t think of a better adjective to describe the shadows because I just didn’t believe it when I first swatched the palette. Un-bloody-believable.Processed with VSCO with s3 presetAnything goes with the colour scheme and range of finishes. You can create looks that are purple, red, pink, multi, brown, muted, neon, dark, glittery, foily and so much more. If you’re less of an extremist when it comes to beauty, then view each row of pans as a colour scheme to work with.
img_8685
But for me, purple crease and brow bone with a golden halo lid? Yes to the please.

I mostly avoid shimmer shadows (I have a weird thing in thinking they draw attention to the round shape of my eyes and make me look like something out of Macbeth) but the pink shimmer shade ‘Candy Floss’ is ready to change my life. I think we’re having a moment.

My Look

My first look with this palette was Halloween – what better time to channel red vibes than for a celebration about blood and gore?

I created a base with ‘Cake Mix’ before getting stuck in with ‘Prick’. Then, with a more refined blending brush, I worked ‘Cherry Soda’ and ‘Coma’ into the crease. On my lid I swatched ‘Cavity’ with a flat shading brush before taking my finger on ‘Candy Floss’ and blending that on top. Processed with VSCO with a5 presetUnder my lash line I worked ‘Coma’ and ‘Cavity’ again to drag the look out further and add some drama.

The shimmer on ‘Candy Floss’ was muted due to me using my finger but the pigment came through. I loved the shade so much that I ended up highlighting my inner-corner and brow bone with it to see it’s true potential. The proof is in the pudding.Processed with VSCO with dog3 presetThe pigment in every single pan – be it a matte, glitter or pressed pigment – gives so much product with the slightest swatch, and there’s minimal falloff. The colour scheme presents so many possibilities without swaying from the theme. Each colour works well together but are significant individually.

Right now, there is an abundance of red-themed palettes littering cosmetic retailers so it can be hard to choose the right one. But even at the £46 price point, Blood Sugar takes the cake.

Invest in product, invest in luxe packaging and pigment payoff.

Holy Grail Glows

A matte finish as the holy grail state of make-up is a minor passing cloud in today’s glowing sky. Setting sprays, lip glosses, highlighters in all their variations and the skincare brands influencing cosmetic trends are devoted to radiant finishes. Yet, we must still question why make-up’s renewed vitality is so important.

The spirit of highlighting – product, application, result – mingles effortless radiance with skilled application. Perhaps it is so popular because it suits global warming‘s melting of ice crystals, or because luminous skin indicates health, or because a glowy finish requires far less maintenance than matte. But I personally believe it lays with the passage of time and the nature of cosmetic trends. Time has allowed the perfect highlight, be it powder, cream, liquid, stick or even jelly, to embody pigmented colour that settles on the skin under the shimmer of the actual highlighting molecules.

The True Essence Of Highlighting

‘Highlighting’ is no longer the singular act of applying a silver shimmer on your cheekbones. Application is also required (for the most luminous of glows) on the nose, cupids bow, chin, brow arches and tails, and inner eyelid corners. The look achieved by tactical highlighting and attention to individual bone structure is somewhat un-achievable with well blended bronzer or cream contour.

img_4700

I spent many a day in front of the mirror unsure on why highlighting is so hyped. I just didn’t get it. I found it impossible to apply without drowning my face and accentuating my pores, acne patches and scars, and ill-blended contour. I also found it impossible to work into a natural makeup look. But alas, after much experimentation, many fails and even more awful make-up days, I realised that choosing the right product is, as always, essential.

Josie Marie’s Take

My devotion to eyeshadow palettes works overtime in my psyche and directed me toward powdered and colouful highlight palettes, rather than strobing sticks or singular pans. I believe that a variation in colour provides better means to reach the perfect colour for your individual skin tone – if there is not one immediate suitable colour, a palette grants the opportunity to mix multiple colours.

My journey to radiance started with Anastasia Beverly Hills’ Moon Child palette. The purple pans and the warm undertones of the shade ‘Pink Heart’ coupled with the amazing reviews, convinced me this was the palette for me. Unfortunately, the colour pigments didn’t suit my skin tone, despite how pigmented and easy to apply they were.

Luckily, I did not have to search much further to discover that I was better suited to the shades in Jeffree Star’s 24 Karat Skinfrost Pro Palette. Taking place as my current highlight holy grail, the browns work as a median between contour and cheekbone highlight, while ‘Sarcophagus’ and ‘King Tut’ really do give an easy-to-blend, difficult-to-ignore glow. The pigment is as commendable as ABH’s glow kits.

9fa62031-a630-420c-a2b0-9fa4f14c115d

This weekend, my make-up look (as pictured above) was bronzed skin, subtle shadow, natural brows and a Legendary-Sarcophagus-King Tut glow. Tactically mixing these colours to blend across my face made my glow look well blended and suited. Of course, the buttery formula of Jeffrey Star’s Skin Frost range played a big role in the easy blending.

For those looking to hone their highlighting craft, trial and error of palettes is definitely a good place to begin. I still don’t even know what brush to use, but at least I know what my highlight holy grail is.

//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js

(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({
google_ad_client: “ca-pub-6987691028175314”,
enable_page_level_ads: true
});

If It Isn’t Blue, It Isn’t True

Blue is the latest statement colour on lids across cyberspace and the world… If it isn’t blue, it isn’t true.

A new wave of block-blue eyeshadow has woven itself into recent fashion weeks and Instagram culture. Kourtney Kardashian has done it, I’ve done it (lol), and a magnitude of artists were doing it. Blue isn’t black so it isn’t harsh, but a touch of navy can add impressive depth to one’s eyeshadow.

Even in its lighter forms, pastel forms and intense shimmer forms, blue lends that extra classy bit of colour to an eye look. Luckily, the tonal range and versatility of blue suits all eye colours. Kourtney Kardashian’s Instagram post from Japan with a block-blue look created by celebrity make-up artist Mario Dedivanovic (@MakeupByMario) had me feeling some type of way. 

So what?

It isn’t just the Kardashian’s that Mario has been creating this look for. I did some research and found similar block looks littered through his Instagram. I was defo feeling some type of way.

A few months ago, Mario did a demo session with Revlon and created one of the most outstanding blue eyeshadow looks Instagram holds. It was a block-blue lid on model Sarah Simmons, blended into a base of turquoise, with purple shadow lining her bottom water line.

Naturally, I had to recreate it.

This style of look may feel scary because of the intensity of colour, or perhaps your fear rests on the importance of blending, but it is relatively easy to recreate. I went straight in with Urban Decay Full Spectrum and covered my lid and crease with vibrant blue shade ‘Blindsided.’ Base down – I moved on to duller (but by no means lesser) blue ‘Metamorphoses’ and covered my lid.

Face make-up done, I went in with a mix of the purple ‘Sketch’ and the pink ‘Gossip’ to line my water eye. Voila! A finished look served by Josie Marie.

So, actually now what?

Ultimately, blue does scare people, there’s no two ways about it. Blue eyeshadow when you’re not even sure if you can contour yet? I must be joking!

Truth is, nobody really gets it right. I messed up my recreation, but that doesn’t discredit the effort and the skill it takes to blend or the confidence to start stepping out of your comfort zone. Lucky for me, colour is my comfort zone. And it’s cool if it isn’t yours, but confidence is cool regardless, so if that means covering your lid in one tone of blue or three, it will work if you let it.

Josie Marie xo

Why Colourful Eye-Shadow IS Classy

READ MY FULL PIECE ON WHY COLOURFUL EYESHADOW IS CLASSY HERE.

Colourful eyeshadow has become a centre of fear amongst the rise of nude trends and subtle glitter – but straying away from your usual gold and black smoky eye or matte brown staple look is more liberating than you think.

Replacing brown eyeshadow with red – and no, not a burgundy style red, a letterbox red – is the perfect place to start. Red eyeshadow is all the rage because it is colourful and not intimidating. It goes with black liner and a range of glitters and will set you free into the possibilities of colourful eyeshadow.

Red isn’t neon, it matches all your fave glitters and it’s familiar (we’ve all worn it on our lips.) Starting with red can lead you to darker pinks and as your blending confidence and faith in your creative streak grow, dark pinks will become baby pinks… And, baby pinks will become purples, and purples will become blues. Before you know it, green has become your staple eye look.

Believe me, I’ve been there.

img_9449

So, what palettes should you invest in to kick-start your creative journey?

Urban Decay’s Full Spectrum Palette is the beginner’s holy grail for colourful shadow. It is lined with columns of colour groups in a range of finishes to provide you with choice. With choice comes possibilities, and with possibilities comes exploration. The shades in this palette are not neon and are all so easy to blend into one another. The brush provided in the palette has a large blending end which is perfect for tricky colour blending.

When you’re feeling braver and your colour confidence is peaking, look to some brighter shades. BH Cosmetics’ Take Me Back To Brazil palette is bold and bright, and great for colourful looks. Kylie Jenner’s brand also has a range of specific colour palettes for when you’re feeling one colour range.

In a world where nude palettes are a cosmetics staple item, it’s time to start breaking free. Put aside your Morphe 35O 35 and find space for Morphe 35B 35. Find space for creativity and you will watch your confidence as a make-up guru grow.

Josie Marie xo