Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Save or Splurge : Lips and Cheeks

Hello Beauties!

Welcome back to another save or splurge on this beautiful Wednesday. We're getting right into it, but you can always read what this series is all about in the first three related posts (face, eyes pt 1, eyes pt2). We're talking about the last items you'll need for your makeup kit today, namely blusher, lip liners and lipglosses / lipsticks.

 * Blushers and Bronzers

Everybody wants a natural blush, but not everybody has it. The other thing everybody wants, but doesn't necessarily have, happens to be high, well defined cheekbones. This is why blushers are an absolute must in your makeup kit, and bronzers are always good to have.

For your personal use, you may be able to get away with only a couple of shades of blush and no bronzer at all, but for your pro kit, you need a larger variety of both.

These are the two products that can make or break the look. The fastest, most fool-proof way to make it seem that you don't know what you're doing, is to apply too much blush or bronzer. Can anyone say scary-way-too-tan-clown? On the flipside, applying too little is just as bad. Except in the case of the corpse bride, you do want at least some colour on those cheeks!

?? What are blushers and bronzers for ??

+ Instantly adds youth to the face.
+ How? Well, the older we get, the more our cheeks sag, the less colour we have in our faces, and the less we tend to glow.
+ Blusher corrects all of those problems in one! It creates the illusion of lifted and more defined cheeks, because the colour draws our eyes. Obviously, it adds colour to our faces! And because our cheekbones seem lifted and we have rosy, youthful cheeks, we seem younger looking too!
+ Bronzer can add further definition to the face, because WHEN APPLIED CORRECTLY, it lifts the cheekbones, softens or angulates the jaw, and can be used to hide any other 'structural' imperfections to the face. (Read more about contouring here)
+ Bronzer also makes the face seem more sunkissed, by adding a tanned element to the skin.

Save or Splurge verdict?
It's a draw.

I've found that less expensive blushers and bronzers can be both very powdery and low in pigmentation. But, having said that, I find that some of the mid-range products are actually pretty good. They're well pigmented and long lasting, with the minimum fallout or residue. BUT : Minimum fallout means there is still fallout, and as a makeup artist, powder residue is probably one of our worst enemies!

The higher end products tend to have no fallout and are often very pigmented. Some of them are so pigmented, in fact, that I've found it's a lot easier to overdo the blush / bronzer in one sweep. Others are perfect, but you pay a pretty penny for them

Because this is a product I prefer to build, I tend to opt for products that can actually handle being layered. Keep that in mind when buying blusher and bronzer. If you can layer a product to the intensity that you want it to be, it means you'll be able to use a single shade on more skin tones (because you can apply it as light or as dark as you want it) and for a larger variety of looks. Whereas if you buy a product that is too pigmented to build, you'll be limited to certain skin tones and looks. Not to mention you'll have to apply foundation and powder over and over again to correct too intense cheeks. :P

Also, when you go shopping for cheek products, get your hands on some MATTE shades. People, nothing, and I repeat, NOTHING, in the world of makeup annoys me quite as much as shimmery, overdone bronzer. It looks really bad!!

Don't be scared of fuchsia pinks and vivid corals, every shade of blush has it's perfect look. Sometimes even apple reds can be the perfect shade you need to complete a look. Most lighter and medium skin tones look fabulous with softer, dustier shades of pink and more salmon-y corals. For caramel and black skins, you want the more vibrant colours. Oranges, deep berry shades and bright pinks look the best here.

I use :
A variety of shades from Kryolan (which is my favourite professional brand when it comes to blush and bronzer)
I also a few shades from Studio Makeup, which are great layering products.
Personally : Catrice blushers and bronzers. (Around R65.00 each)

 * Lip liners

Great for adding a pop of colour or a bit of drama to your look!

?? What are Lip liners for ??

+ Obviously, to line your lips! This is done to keep the colour from your lipstick / gloss to bleed into the fine lines around your mouth.
+ You can also completely fill in the lips with your lip liner!
+ Doing this creates an effect close to what lip stains offer; a long-wearing, lasting lip colour, because lipstick adheres better to the liner than the skin.
+ Liners are used to conceal any imperfections in the lip shape.

Save or Splurge verdict?

As with the eyeliners, a lip liner is a lip liner. I'm tempted to go and copy and paste exactly what I said about the eyeliners here. But I won't. This time.

The point? Not only are the ingredients the same in the products offered by the higher and lower end brands, but the application is identical too. And they both wear and tear pretty equally in my mind.

So, as I said with eyeliners, save a buck here and splurge it on foundation.

I use :
A variety of products from Essence and Catrice.

 * Lipsticks and Glosses

Add a final layer of colour to your smootchers with these!

?? What are Lipsticks / Glosses for ??

+ Will it stun you if I say that they add colour to your smootchers? I've said that already? Pardon me.
+ When applied correctly, lipstick can perfect the mouth. AKA make the lips seem more / less plump, widen or narrow the mouth, conceal any imperfections.
+ There are some lipsticks that are supposed to add moisture to your lips too. I've yet to find a product that really doesn't dry out your lips. :)
+ There are a variety of lipsticks out there, from waterproof, to long lasting, to matte, sheer and shimmery. You get 'em all!
+ Some products these days actually plump your lips while you wear them, because they contain capsicum.
+ The added bonus is that the right shade of red can actually make your teeth seem whiter :) (that is, if the lipstick isn't on your teeth)
+ Lipglosses add a shiny finish to your lips. Some actually add micro glitter particles too, which add dimension to your lips.

Save or Splurge verdict?
It's a draw.

Seriously, this one is up to you. Some of the lower end brands offer really nice products. I hear Revlon's lip stains are really, really good. I personally haven't tried them. Others are less nice, because they're too tacky and less pigmented.

Some of the higher end brands have absolutely amazing products too. I don't use MAC (because of their animal testing), but their lipsticks are really, really good. I do own a Kryolan lipstick palette, but I'm not a fan, because the products are kind of sticky.

As for the glosses, I actually quite like the ones Essence have to offer. They're not overly greasy and sticky, which is always a bonus when it comes to lip gloss.

So this one is a toss up. Experiment until you find a product you can put your faith in.

I use :
Such a massive variety that I can't list them all. :P

And that's it for today's post! Next Wednesday, I'll do a save or splurge on the tools of the trade, so be sure to tune in for that.

Stay beautiful and be kind to animals,


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