Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Handmade jewelry makes me happy - Bead embroidery

If I am not shuffling through my makeup stash or surfing the net or reading countless online resources about parenting, you can find me doing bead embroidery! I just love how therapeutic it is. I did mention this in an earlier blog post (click here). Sadly, I am not able to sew much as I find it very difficult to stand too long or sit too long, so that is on the back burner for now. Since my ever growing belly is getting in the way of my other hobbies, bead embroidery has come to the rescue as I can comfortably sit in my cosy sofa and do it for hours.

Here are two of my bead embroidered pieces.

The black beads are from Indonesia (Bali). They are volcano beads! Brings back lovely memories as I bought them while my husband and I were on our honeymoon. The blue and black seed beads are czech beads bought here in Sweden. This will be a piece I am going to keep for a very long time. Perhaps pass it down to my child/children one day!

This piece was inspired by Egyptian art which I love so much. The scarab is made of polymer clay. In fact, this was the first time I had my hands on polymer clay. It turned out ok, I think. I painted it with nail polish from Orly (space cadet) to give that duel tone effect. Not sure if it will last but it was worth the try. I might use this piece in a clothing design. It's work in progress for now.

If you want to see more bead embroidery that I have or am in the process of doing, please watch the b/m videos on my DIYFashionista Youtube channel (click here).

Here are some links to Youtube channels where you can learn the basics of bead embroidery. This was how I learnt and progressed with my projects.

- - Click here
- Beads friends - Click here
- Tsummerlee - Click here

I am still learning and I am glad to have tried this art.  I must admit, bead embroidery is a test to my patience and I can't believe that I can do it for hours in a stretch without feeling frustrated or distracted, so it is a pleasant surprise for me. Yes, I have the attention span of a 5 year old at times! :)

Thanks for stopping by! How is your week so far? Do you have time for a hobby?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Senna cosmetics - Review and Swatches

Just a couple of days ago, I posted a sneak peak at some items from Senna Cosmetics (click here). I have tried these for the past three weeks and am now able to review them.

Here is a brief introduction to Senna Cosmetics for those of us who are not familiar with this brand. 

Created in 1976 by Emmy nominated artist Eugenia Weston, Senna was the first professional makeup artist line to introduce more natural, wearable colors for ‘everyday’ women. Now Senna is the favorite of Hollywood film and television makeup pros, beauty editors, A-list celebrities and women of all ages and stages.
Senna is known for its superb skin perfecting foundations, richly pigmented eye colors, innovative mineral makeup, and the patented Form-A-Brow® stencil kit that launched a whole new beauty category by giving women perfect classic brows in minutes.
Eugenia Weston, Senna founder and celebrity makeup artist, has worked in theatre and movie studios and in creating her own makeup line, felt that the real essence of cosmetics is ‘Beauty, Illusion, Transformation’. To represent this theatrical feeling Eugenia chose a harlequin motif and named this makeup muse ‘Senna’. - Source here

Let's begin with the review.

(Items shown from left to right)
Senna Barely Base Sheer mineral makeup SPF20 in Dark (Link)
Senna HD Extreme Firming radiant makeup in Tan (Link)
Senna Totally Transforming concealer in Amber (Link)
Senna Brow Shaper Dou in Ebony (Link)
Senna Lip Sync in A La Mode (Link)
Senna Lip Sync in Paris Pink (Link)
Senna Lip Sync in Pink Mink (Link)
Senna Double Brow Brush (Link)

Please excuse the chubby pregnant face! :)

With Senna Barely Base Sheer mineral makeup SPF20 (link), I am in the shade Dark. It blends like a dream. Dries to a sheer, illuminating yet matte to the touch finish. It evens out the skin tone nicely, as you can see from my before and after pic. This sheer foundation has benefiting properties that nourish and protect the skin. It has SPF 20 as well. Great for everyday use. It never broke me out or left me feeling oily or caked with makeup. This sheer base will not give you heavy coverage if you desire that.    

Senna HD Extreme Firming radiant makeup in Tan (link). This foundation is not my shade thus I can't give you a fair and honest opinon. Unfortunately this is the darkest shade that they have on their site. 

With Senna Totally Transforming concealer (link), Amber suits me. As you can see from the before and after pic, the concealer has done a very good job with covering the under eye discoloration and the pimple scar. It comes with a doe foot applicator which is quite similar to Mac select moisture cover concealers. Here is a comparison of the two concealers (see below).

 Senna Totally Transforming concealer has a better balance of the orange undertones compared to Mac select moisture cover. Mac concealer has more yellow in it and the formula is not quite as thick and opaque as the one from Senna. I prefer the Senna concealer as it does not need layering, just one small swipe, blend with your fingers and you are done. I anticipate that this concealer fits well for those with really dark circles and pigmentation issues. It is best to set the concealer with powder so that there will be no issues with creasing throughout the day just like with any other concealer.

Senna Brow Shaper Dou in Ebony (link) & Senna Double Brow Brush (link) is the perfect combo for well groomed eyebrows. I usually use Mac fluidline in Dipdown to fill in my eyebrows. I really like this eyebrow shadow and wax better as it gives me much more natural looking eyebrows. However, I should mention that they only last for about 6 hours. I have an oily t-zone and eyebrows so most products tend to fade after 6 hours. Senna Double Brow Brush is a great tool to have for any makeup enthusiast as it has two functions in just one brush. Great for traveling too. 

Senna Lip Sync in A La Mode (link) is a pretty pink lipstick which is sheer with one coat, yet build-able with many coats. The lipgloss is a peachy pink shade with gold glitters. 

Senna Lip Sync in Paris Pink (link) has more reds than pinks in it. The gloss is pink with tiny shimmers that is not gritty in anyway.

Senna Lip Sync in Pink Mink (link) is a hot pink lipstick. I have worn this in a makeup tutorial (click here). The lipgloss is in the shade pink with chunky glitters. The glitters were manageable but I am not too fond of having glitter settle into the lines of my lips.

- I like all the products mentioned above except for the HD Extreme Firming makeup.
- Quality makeup
- Love the idea of having the lipstick and lipgloss in one tube/packaging. 
- Pigmentation is most of the products are good and are build-able.

- Most of the products cost similar to Mac cosmetics. Mac is readily available in most countries and one can try them out before buying however with Senna, it can be a little tricky.
- They do not carry darker shades. The darkest is what I have tried and mentioned above. For reference, I am in Mac NC44/45.

This brand has quality makeup which is practical for most women. The only issue I have is that they do not carry darker shades thus making it not as favorable for my darker beauties. I hope they improve on this.  

Has anyone else tried this brand before? What are your thoughts?

(Products were sent for review purposes.)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Light blue on blue with pink lips makeup

Seems like I am gravitating towards pastel colors suitable for Spring these days. It's time to look forward to better and warmer weather. Here is a look using an inexpensive palette from Sleekmakeup. I like the matte shadows, they are pigmented even though sometimes a little chalky. Make it work with a good base and patience to pack on and blend the eyeshadows. I made the necklace, in case you were wondering.

Products used:

Kryolan - TV stick FS27
Kryolan - TV stick FS41
Senna cosmetics - Totally Transforming concealer in amber
Mac - Medium/Dark mineralize skin finish

Senna cosmetics - Brow shaper duo in ebony
Mac - Painterly paintpot
Sleek - Circus palette light blue e/s
Sleek - Circus palette dark blue e/s
La femme - Brown e/s
Rhomlon - Sky blue eye pencil
Mac - Feline khol pencil
Graftobian - Hi-Def glamour creme in desert sand
Mac - Ricepaper e/s (Eyebrow highlight)
Mac - Blacktrack fluidline
Mac - False lashes mascara in false black
Daiso - Fake lashes

La femme - Brown e/s (Contour)
La femme - Peach e/s (Blush)

Senna cosmetics - Pink Mink lip sync

Happy weekends lovlies... Thanks for coming by!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Senna Cosmetics; A Makeup artist cosmetics line

Senna Barely Base Sheer mineral makeup SPF20 in Dark (Link)
Senna HD Extreme Firming radiant makeup in Tan (Link)
Senna Totally Transforming concealer in Amber (Link)
Senna Brow Shaper Dou in Ebony (Link)
Senna Lip Sync in A La Mode (Link)
Senna Lip Sync in Paris Pink (Link)
Senna Lip Sync in Pink Mink (Link)
Senna Double Brow Brush (Link)

To kick off the month of love, Senna is having a sale at HauteLook starting February 9th at 8am PST.
There are 36 different items to choose from which are up to 73% off retail prices.

Review in progress.... Stay tuned!

*Item sent for review purposes.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Loreal Double Extension mascara for natural looking flirty lashes

I thought I would never say I have a favorite mascara now. This is coming from someone who is very picky when it comes to makeup in general. I have found the one that works really well with my lashes. Gives me the best looking lashes even on my worst days.

Presenting... Loreal Double Extension mascara in carbon black.

This is a two step mascara.  It comes with a conditional base that is enriched with Ceramide R which visibly lengthens the appearance of the lashes when applied. It applies white but dries clear. So don't worry if you do forget to apply the black mascara, you will not look like you have frosted lashes . Now for Step 2 fortifying extending mascara, it distributes the black color from root to tip without leaving clumps.

Let me show you how I apply this mascara and see for yourself why I love it.

1. Before picture of my lashes. As you can see my eyes look tired and lifeless.
2. Apply the base coat (Step 1)
3. Apply the color coat (Step 2)
4. End result - beautiful, natural and flirty looking lashes.

- Lengthens my lashes without much effort.
- No need for false lashes.
- A quick pick me up for my eyes, especially for tired days which are quite often these days (pregnancy)!
- No flaking at all.
- Does not smudge even on my oily lids.
- Does not clump.

- It is not black enough for me, can be improved.
- Not for those who don't like two step mascara application.

I love this mascara as it does what I look for in a mascara and that is, it has to lengthen and thicken the lashes. This mascara is slightly on the higher price range even though it is a drugstore brand. However, I feel it is worth the money.
I have used this mascara for about 3 months now. It's time to throw this tube out and buy a new one. With all said, I will still be trying out other high & low end mascaras.

What's your favorite mascara?

(It is cold and frosty in Sweden now. Can't wait for warmer weather. Miss the sun so much!)