Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Save or Splurge - Eyes (Part Two)

Hello Beauties!

Welcome back to another Wednesday on the Couch. We're continuing with our Save or Splurge series today, looking at some more eye essentials. You can check out part one of the eye essentials here, and the face essentials post here.

Let's get right to it.

 * Mascara

Need an instant wake-up call for your eyes? Here's just the thing!

?? What does mascara do ??

+ Adds length, curl or thickness to your own lashes.
+ Adds colour to the lashes (except if you're using clear mascara, obviously.), which makes them stand out.
+ Because the lashes look thicker, longer and are more obvious because of the added colour, your eyes are accentuated.
+ Can actually contain ingredients that moisturize and lengthen your natural lashes.
+ Some mascaras make your lashes seem longer by slightly cheating... They contain nylon fibres that attach to the lashes to give them a longer, wispier look.
+ Can also be waterproof, which is great for special occasions (to last even through tears of joy) and poolside parties.

Save or Splurge verdict?

Mascara is often the item in your personal or professional kit that really is used up the quickest. It's also the item with the shortest expiration date, and ideally needs to be replaced every three or so months. Plus, it dries up! This is why you don't want to spend too much on it, especially if you're just starting out and you don't do makeup on clients every day. And personally, I go through mascara fairly quickly, so I don't like to spend too much on my own mascara either!

I've used mascara from every brand out there, I promise you. And while some of the higher end brands claim they'll make your lashes look like falsies and are the absolute best, they're mostly lying. Mascara is mascara! The higher end products dry up just as quickly as the lower end ones. And a lot of the time, you can have a look at the ingredients on the expensive and less expensive brands, and you'll find they're made of EXACTLY the same stuff.

I absolutely adore Essence mascaras. Of all the lower end brands, theirs are the absolute best. In fact, I'll go so far as to say they're better than most of the higher end brands as well!

My advice to you is this, go out there and try all the mascaras you can find. Find a product that suits your style and budget. At the end of the day you need to be happy with the product.

For your pro kit you'll need something waterproof, that doesn't flake or clump too much. But don't just buy waterproof! Get something for added length or volume too, and always remember that you can layer different kinds of mascaras! Waterproofs tend to hold curl the best, so if you need to add length but also need it to be curly or waterproof, apply the lengthening mascara first, and then layer over that with the waterproof. Voila!

I use :
A variety of products from Essence. I have their coloured mascaras, waterproof ones as well as different ones for volume and length. My absolute favourite kind is the I <3 Extreme range (in the picture it's the pink tube). I own both the volume and lengthening ones, and I adore them both!!

They're priced from R34.99.

 * False Lashes

This is for when you need that extra bit of dazzle on the eyes, and is a must for any professional kit. :)

?? What are false lashes for ??

+ Apparently Hollywood is where falsies began! Director David Griffith needed an actress (Seena Owen) to have fluttery lashes for a movie scene in 1916, and then there were lashes.
+ People will illnesses like alopecia can use falsies hen their eyelashes have fallen out.
+ It's used to lengthen and thicken the lash line.
+ This can be done in a natural, or completely unnatural way (as in with funky colours, feathers, and really anything you can think of).
+ It's especially popular in makeup editorials, fantasy settings and Hollywood. :)
+ It's also pretty popular on brides or for other functions, because falsies translate really well on photographs.

Save or splurge verdict?
It's a draw.

You need to keep a few things in mind when you shop for lashes.
1) The thickness and bendability of the strip. Strip lashes come on a band, which usually black, but you do get them on clear bands as well. (The band is the part that adheres to your eyelid, to which the lashes are attached.) Now, because this part is stuck to your eyelid, you need it to be comfortable. The harder / less bendable the strip, the more agony you'll put yourself through when wearing it. So ideally, you want something that is soft, and can easily be bent. (Bending is essential, because your eyelid is rounded. So a stick straight lash won't be comfortable.)
2) The length and shape of the fibers. If you want something more natural looking when worn, you want to buy lashes that are slightly shorter and rounded off at the outer corner. The moment you go for cat eye lashes (which flare out at the outer corner), it becomes obvious that you're wearing falsies. Also, longer falsies look less natural.
- For brides, you want the most natural looking lashes. If you can manage a strip lash with a clear band, all the better. Having said that, I personally prefer individual lashes on brides.
3) The colour and density of the lashes. The more fibers (as in the thicker), the less natural. And as for colour, that's obvious! Bright blue lashes won't look natural. :P

Keep in mind that you can actually wash and sanitise your lashes for repeated use. So if you buy a pair that's of better quality, they'll last you much longer. I love Ardell lashes, because they've got a fairly large range to choose from, and really do look pretty natural. I have a pair that I've worn many times now, and they still look brand new. I did pay slightly more for them, however, but for the use I'v gotten out of them, it's been worth it.

Less expensive lashes are great for once off use. But they tend to be heavier and less comfortable. So for my fantasy shoots, for example, I often use the cheaper lashes, because they won't be worn that long and don't need to be reused. Having said that, any kind of funky, coloured or feathered lash does tend to be more expensive. You can buy lashes for up to around R500 a pair!

As far as individuals lashes are concerned, I also use the slightly more expensive ones. The cheap ones have harder fibers, which can actually be less comfortable (and kind of poke the eyelid :P). These are the most natural looking lashes of all. Because you can buy them in different lengths, you can use them on basically anybody, with any length of eyelash. They also don't have the telltale strip, which makes them a little more difficult to detect. They do take longer to apply, however, but it's worth the effort.

I use :
A variety of lashes, but my favourite ones are from Ardell, which start at about R60 per pair.

* Lash Glue

As the name suggests, this is the stuff you use to stick the false lashes to your eyelid with.

Sure, most falsies come with a glue included. Listen to me closely (or read intently): THROW IT AWAY.

The glue you get with the lashes is terrible. I've never, as in ever, found a glue that comes with the false lashes that works. They suck. Big. Time.

So you're going to need something to stick your lashes with, period.

Save or splurge verdict?

You need a quality product here. One that actually stands the test of time, sweat and tears, but still allows the lashes to be removed easily when needed. You need something that won't cause hectic, tear inducing fumes (because I've actually experienced that) and allergic reactions. Because when your makeup is done perfectly, you don't want to see all your effort run down your client's face, or their eyes swelling up because of some cheap ass product.

So spend the extra buck and get something good. Besides, it lasts a really long time!

I use :


Nothing else! :D They are a little more difficult to get your hands on in South Africa, that's true. These days, you have an Inglot in every Edgars, and they stock Duo, so you should be able to get a tube if you need one. They retail for R259.00 at the moment.

And that's your post for today! Next week, we're looking at lip products and blusher (because I forgot to add the blush with the other face products. *blush*).

Stay beautiful and be kind to animals,


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