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Thursday, 5 March 2015

I Have So Much to Tell You!

Hello Beauties!

I have to apologize for my absence; I started a new job a few weeks ago and it's exhausting, but incredibly rewarding. I've not forgotten about you, and have been trying some new products to tell you about.

Sephora Collection
My new office is a mere 10-minute walk from Sephora, and I've been eyeing their new Sephora Collection Colorful Duo Reflect eyeshadows for weeks. I finally pulled the trigger and bought one in "Mermaid Tail." It's GORGEOUS! Check it:





It's so hard to capture the green, blue and brown (with a smidge of gold) of Mermaid Tail. Click the link to Sephora instead for a much better photo of this beauty. I thought it was going to go on greenish blue, but it's a brownish blue instead! Absolutely safe for work.

Hello Waffle
I put together an order from the lovely Christine at Canadian indie company Hello Waffle. I needed some safe-for-work eyeshadow and some finishing powder. I originally ordered a 5-shadow set in HW's "halfling" size (it's a great deal!) and the Lavender Cream powder, not realizing that it's a highlight, not a finishing powder. Christine was amazing and happily changed my order to the right powder:



Hello Waffle's finishing powder is finely milled, easily applied (I've been using a Real Techniques Powder Brush) and has a beautiful finish with a touch of sparkle - kind of like Guerlain's Meteorites.






Here are four out of the five Hello Waffle eyeshadows:























Top to bottom: Catticus Finch, Pride, Gryphon and Schubert

MAC
If you don't use MAC's Prep + Prime Lip, then really, if you want your lipstick or gloss to last a good long time, go and buy some posthaste. This primer is comfortable to use, and the idea is to wait about 45 seconds after applying (when it becomes tacky) to apply your liner and lipstick/gloss. I'm not a fan of lip gloss on a normal day, due to having to reapply every 4 minutes, but when I use Prep + Prime Lip, gloss lasts for a tolerable amount of time. That's a big deal!

Here's what it looks like:



Just a normal-looking stick primer? NO! It's magic.

I'm so sorry for making you wait for this, but I'll try to be more consistent now that I'm getting my new routine down.

Til next time,

Amanda

Monday, 9 February 2015

BOT Gone Corporate, and Other News.

Hi Beauties!

Haha, not really, I just took advantage of a VistaPrint coupon (storewide sale is on, 50% off everything Feb 9-10/15!) and had some Beauty Over Thirty cards made. Check them out (front and back):

Aren't they pretty! I spent a fair amount of time on the design, and considering I'm a total design newb, they turned out pretty well.Why did I make these when this is clearly an online hobby for me? Well, everywhere I go, I end up talking to someone about something beauty-related. I inevitably tell them I have a website, and I've been wanting something to hand out so people I talk to have something tangible from me, and they know that both I and Beauty Over Thirty are for real. For a small investment, we shall see if being able to hand out a card will have a result. I'll fill you in once I know!In other exciting news, I have returned to the workforce full-time in a job that moves me into the next phase of my own life, career-wise. I work in government relations/advocacy, with a particular focus on health, and that is exactly what my new job is. Today was Day 1 and the people seem terrific and the organization even has a shower for employees who cycle or run to work! In the summer, I will take advantage of that for sure. What does this all mean for BOT? Not much, other than I'll be trying out some new work-safe, low-ingredient looks - and posting them. While beauty is a new and wonderful thing in my life, I need it to fit into my lifestyle as well. I'll be sharing my progress on taking the least amount of time to look the best I can every workday. Finally, I want to tell you all about a resource that I started using last week in my quest for excellent skin. I began running out of my current skincare products, and can't really get a hold of more of what I've been using (Health & Beauty Dead Sea Minerals, an Israeli brand that is terrific) without incurring serious customs charges. I began seeking out information on what is new and exciting - and proven - in the skincare game, bought a book called The Original Beauty Bible by Paula Begoun.You don't have to buy the book to get the most important information, because Paula and her team produce Beautypedia, a site that reviews and rates brands and products, as well as posting advice, information and articles on how to be an informed and educated skincare product consumer. There is a paid section of the site, although I'm not sure what for as I've not come across a section of the site I've needed paid access for. In any case, if you find the paid section and want to sign up, I've got a 50% off coupon code. Just comment or email beautyoverthirty7@gmail.com and I'll send it to you. That's it for now. I'm still working on some reviews of products I've tried over the last little while, as well as some posts to help you with purchasing and Spring 2015 fashion (hint: it's gorgeous.)Til next time!Amanda

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Make Lipstick Last!

Hello Beauties!

Over the weekend, I was telling my mum about how to make her lipstick last longer. It was hard to explain without the visuals, so I decided to film a quick video about making lipstick - well, lip products - last.

Here's the video:

Even though I'm not a huge fan, you might want to try the two-step long-wearing lip products. Most drugstore cosmetic companies make these products. Some examples are:
  • L'Oréal Infallible 24hr LipColour - this is the best of the bunch.
  • Maybelline Super Stay 24hr Color
  • Rimmel Provocalips 16hr Colour
Long-lasting creamy matte lipsticks which I like more are:
High-end stains are also getting better and better, particularly Yves Saint-Laurent Glossy Stains. They are a great combination of a stain and a gloss. The gloss recedes pretty quickly, but leaves behind a long-lasting stain. The best part? The colour selection. Most department stores with YSL counters carry the full collection, which is incredibly widely varied. The $38 price tag is worth it to not have to re-apply your lipstick all day long.  

Technique #1

Supplies: Any lip product (although generally lip glosses aren't the best for this), loose or compact powder, any medium-to-large size makeup brush, one two- or three-ply kleenex. Lip liner and lip primer are optional (but I think they contribute to longer wear.)

a) Apply primer and lip liner. See the "All About Lips" video for liner technique. 
b) Apply one coat of lip colour. 
c) Separate the kleenex into each ply and load the brush with powder.
d) Place one kleenex ply over your lips and swipe your lips with powder through the kleenex ply. 
e) Remove the kleenex from your lips. Your lips are now "stained" with your lip colour. The stain is long-lasting, including through drinking, as long as you don't eat any oily food. 
f) Apply an additional coat of lip colour for hydration and additional colour. You may need to re-apply after eating.

Technique #2

Supplies: Any lip product (including glosses), MAC Prep + Prime Lip. Lip liner is optional. 

a) Apply MAC Prep + Prep Lip all over the lips, running it over the lip border by 1 or 2mm. 
b) Wait 1-2 minutes until the Prep + Prime becomes "tacky" or a bit sticky. 
c) Apply lip liner and lip product. Your lips will feel sticky for a little while, but it's OK! They will dry. 

I tried combining Techniques 1 & 2, but I didn't find lip product lasted longer than each individual technique. I save you time by trying these things for you! If you try these, let me know how they work out for you. I'm not against refining techniques!

Til next time,
Amanda 

Sunday, 1 February 2015

The Wonderful World of Fragrance

(If you've come back looking for The Eye Suite videos, they'll be up in the next few days!)

Beauties,

I've been learning recently about independent fragrance. I'm not talking about mainstream perfumes like Chanel No. 5, Miss Dior, and all the other designer fragrances, rather the gorgeous scents that are coming out of independent perfumeries all over the world. 

Over the next few days, I'm going to talk to you about one company in particular, Sixteen92 out of Irving, Texas. I'm hoping to get a chance to talk to Claire, the crafter of all things Sixteen92 (and who has a children's wear shop as well! Multi-talent! I'll link to it when I find the page) over the next few days so that I can ask her a pile of questions and pass on a taste of this world to you. 

I have been spending some time on the Indie Makeup and More subreddit of late, looking for new and interesting colours and formulations for makeup. I came across a discussion not about makeup, but about indie perfumes and was intrigued. There are a fair number of independent perfumers all over the world, making scents that range from one note (that is, one perfume oil) to complex fragrances and gourmands (scents that smell like food.) 

I decided to try my hand at indie fragrance when I came across Sixteen92. Claire's scents are interesting and complicated, with names that are really, amazingly a propos of the perfume. Sixteen92 also makes hand and body lotions and shower gels with scent infused into the cream, and God knows I love a good hand cream. It's so hard to describe and I find myself wishing I had smell-o-vision to demonstrate the utter beauty of Sixteen92's bestsellers, Lolita and Southern Gothic. I'll ask Claire what her inspiration for these fragrances were if I get the chance to talk to her. Instead, here are pictures:

These are the five indie samples I have, four from Sixteen92 and one mystery fragrance called "Caramel Knowledge," which is a lovely scent, if a bit musky for me.  



These are my two "gourmand" (food-scented) samples from Sixteen92.
- Red Velvet Hot Chocolate smells exactly like you'd think!
- Coconut Creme Hot Chocolate is more dark chocolate than coconut creme, but still quite yummy.


These two perfumes are simply gorgeous.
- Southern Gothic is described as "a lovely, complex and warm southern floral that unfolds beautifully as it wears." It reminds me of a hot, humid summer southern night. 
- Lolita is a mix of Crisp Apple Skins, Tart Peach Candies, Rose Absolute, Sugared Violet. Lolita is young and beautiful. Of course.


I really can't recommend trying out Sixteen92 more, and I'm going to try other indie perfume companies over time and will post more about this area of beauty. I know it's hard to wear perfume these days with all of the restrictions and allergies in the workplace, but there's no reason we can't be-scent ourselves in our off hours!


Til next time,
Amanda

Saturday, 24 January 2015

The Eye Suite

Hi all,

I have been busy filming, editing and uploading a new suite of videos all about eyes today. These are short videos that break down the four stages of eye makeup application in an easy, worksafe way. The first two videos are up, and this is the final look:
Ugh, ghastly photo. But work safe and easy!















BOT Eye Suite #1: Preparation - concealing eye discolouration, eyelid base and sticky primer.

  Products:

  • NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in "Vanilla" - available at all NARS counters and in Sephora
  • NYX Eyeshadow Base in "White" - available at Target and Rexall (Canada), most US drugstores
  • Fyrinnae "Pixie Epoxy" - available online(the store is closed at the moment, but keep checking) - This product isn't strictly necessary for this look, but you might want to try it for very glittery/sparkly shadows in order to keep them in place.

  • BOT Eye Suite #2: Eyeshadow Application
     - the three-colour method for easy, eye-lifting looks
      Products:
  • TheBalm "Balmsai" Palette - available at select Rexall (Canada), Ulta (US) and online
  • Shiro Cosmetics Eyeshadow in "What Does This Lever Do?" - available online.


  • Brushes
    I really like Rexall's home brand "Kit" brushes. They are so soft and easy to use, and they blend well. Bonus, they are also very well-priced at ~$5-8CAD per brush, and are available at most Rexall stores in Canada. Of course, both Sigma and Real Techniques brushes are available for Canadians through FTBBeauty, and for Americans at Ulta stores (and Sephora in the US? Let me know!

    I'm working on editing and processing the third (eyeliner and mascara) and fourth (eyebrows) videos to complete the suite. As always, let me know what you think!

    Til next time,
    Amanda

    Thursday, 22 January 2015

    #Winterskin

    Hi all,

    Canadians love to talk about weather. I have to admit, I'm finding that I am one of those people as I get a bit older. I couldn't have cared less about the weather 10 years ago, but now, I am experiencing the weather. #Winterskin.

    I'll be using the hashtag #winterskin all winter on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Google+ so that you can search for it and find any other items I find that work for the season's effect on our beautiful over thirty skin.

    Dealing with #winterskin in the shower or bath
    A few days into winter coming to town earlier this month, I started waking up in the middle of the night scratching myself all over my body. This is a nightmare scenario, and it had to be dealt with. I tried my regular Nivea SOS lotion for very dry skin, which promises 24 hours of moisture. Not even close. This was my clue to start exfoliating or "dry brushing."

    If you've never exfoliated your body, I highly recommend this video on dry brushing. Instead of a brush, I use a glove, but the principles are the same. Do it once or twice a week in your shower or tub before showering (or tubbing!), and remember to brush toward your heart. I then use a shower cream that is ultra-moisturizing. The glove and shower cream combination I use:



    The glove is a no-name that I purchased at Beddington's, but that I'm sure an equivalent can be found in any store like Bed, Bath and Beyond or Target, etc.

    The shower cream is the Life Brand equivalent of the Aveeno Skin Relief Body Wash. I highly recommend if you suffer from itchy skin due to dryness like me.

    Moisturizing for #winterskin
    Nivea SOS Repair and Care Body Lotion has always worked for me in the past, and I recommend it if your skin is dry, but not itchy. Itchy, dry skin is a whole other battle. I tried an argan oil-based product, but it was not enough. I shaved my legs with EOS' new shave lotion (good stuff, nice vanilla scent) which helped, but my whole body is a problem, not just my legs.

    I purchased two different shea butter-based moisturizers to compare and contrast with you all in mind. I then exfoliated, showered and slathered each on half of myself to test. I bought:

    The Body Shoppe's Shea Body Butter (% shea unknown, but it is fair trade shea from a woman-supporting enterprise in Ghana) (400mL, $15CAD on sale, $30CAD regular price) (Did you guys know that L'Oréal bought The Body Shoppe? I didn't. Hm.)


    L'Occitane Creme Ultra Riche Corps/Ultra Rich Body Cream 25% Shea Butter (200mL, $40CAD on sale, $48CAD regular price)


    Choosing a winner here is near impossible. Both do exactly what they say on the tin, and I got at least 36 hours of relief with both of these creams. I found I needed less of the L'Occitane cream, which is a good thing because it's more than double the price (when both are on sale) and half the amount of The Body Shoppe (TBS) cream. I liked the smell of TBS product better, it's nutty and mild whereas the L'Occitane has a scent very much like a Nivea or Jergens moisturizer, i.e. a bit chemical-smelling.

    Really, both are excellent products for my #winterskin. If money were no object, I would re-purchase the L'Occitane cream because I like the company and I know there is 25% shea butter in the product. Also, L'Occitane tweeted to me that their shea is sourced from a fair trade partnership with over 15,000 women in Burkina Faso. Finally, knowing that L'Oréal owns TBS makes me leery, actually.

    However, not everyone can afford the L'Occitane, so I'll recommend TBS Shea Body Butter based purely on price per ounce and a less chemically-scented product. But know how hard a choice this was to make, friends!

    Til next time,
    Amanda

    Tuesday, 20 January 2015

    1000!

    Hi all,

    1000 people have viewed this page, and I'm SO excited about it. I thought this would be a little blog for me and my friends, but 1000 people!

    Visitors to Beauty Over Thirty have mostly looked at the 5 Ingredient Look and Basic Face. I will continue in that vein, making videos and writing posts and reviews for busy women who want to enhance their beauty with a little bit of makeup, a little more fashion, a little extra fun.

    I want to tell you what I've got on my BOT to-do list, and I'd love your feedback on what you want to see from BOT. Coming up, I'll be writing and making videos about:
    • Colour correcting - a lot of us have developed redness, sallow skin on our faces and discolouration around our eyes as we've gotten a bit older. I'm researching how the pros do colour correcting and what products they use. 
    • Spring fashion update - I'm going to do a summary (with pictures!) of what the trends for fashion are going to be in Spring 2015, as shown in recent fashion weeks around the world. I'm talking about ready-to-wear fashion, not couture! We have professions to dress for!
    • Common ingredients in skincare - A few months ago, I did a lot of research into skincare to develop my own routine for my own needs, and right now I'm in the middle of looking for a new serum as mine is about to run out. I've found that knowing the ingredients in cleansers, serums, moisturizers and treatments that do what you want is the key to success. I'm going to write about what ingredients do what and how to look for them in your skincare choices. 
    • Information sources - I know you don't get all of your beauty info from me! I want to give you a rundown of what sources I've found the most reliable and which sources can be kicked to the curb. 
    • The cost of beauty - This post will be a while down the road as I get more information gathered, but I want to talk to you about how beauty doesn't have to be costly, and building on the common ingredients posts, how you can recognize when a product is overpriced for what is in it. 
    • And of course, I'll be filming more 5-ingredient looks, nighttime looks that take a bit longer and use a few more products and reviews galore! I have a growing list of products to test - I've just done a test of Maybelline's 14-hour lipsticks and, spoiler alert, there is no reason (other than THE HYPE) for this product to be flying off the shelves in the drugstore. 
    As always, I shall do my very best to research and learn and pass on good, reliable information about beauty.  I swear, this winter has been awful for my own skin - I've been waking up scratching myself in the middle of the night. As I write this, I have two different very dry skin (aka winter skin!) moisturizers on each half of my body so that I can pass on which works best and how to relieve winter skin dryness and itching. I'm also trying to learn to take better pics!

    Thank you all for coming over to BOT, reading a bit, watching a bit, and maybe learning a bit. Don't forget to comment, share, all that stuff so that BOT can reach the next goal - 5000!

    Til next time,
    Amanda

    Friday, 16 January 2015

    A Small Haul

    Hi all,

    Last night I decided to check out the Rexall (a Canadian drug store chain) close to the University of Toronto. I read earlier this week that a few Rexall locations in Toronto are carrying some hard-to-find brands such as TheBalm, Cargo, Vasanti, Studio Makeup and much more. 

    I was not disappointed! First, I have to say that the cosmetician at this location was, in a word, superb. Leia saw me at the NYX display that was empty of anything I was interested in, i.e. a good selection of Soft Matte Lip Creams (Milan, Copenhagen, and Ibiza specifically). As I came around the corner to the displays for The Balm and other mid-range cosmetics, Leia came up to me totally unobtrusively (thanks for that, Leia!) and we just started chatting about makeup. 

    Leia, like me, was not at all interested in makeup, skincare and all of the things BOT is about until a bit later than most gals. She gently moved me from brand to brand, telling me her honest opinion about a few things that I was interested in, and once she got to know a bit about my preferences (she had my colouring down pat within 10 seconds!) she introduced me to new products from some amazing brands I hadn't known about. Check out the gorgeousness from Emani, a vegan, cruelty-free brand from California:


    Emani Mineral Hybrid Cremes in Co-Dependent
    Can you see the shimmer creams and pinks in the beige?
    Leia can tell you, I actually gasped when I saw these.

    Emani Mineral Hybrid Cremes in No Free Ride 
    (horrible quality, but its' hard for the camera to focus on these!)
    Again, the slight shimmer in the light greens and creams is just gorgeous. 

    Next up, a selection of Cargo Cosmetics product is carried at Rexall. I've never seen it anywhere else except for the junky makeup islands at Winners and Marshall's. I have two Cargo liquid lipsticks in my collection and their Suited to a Tea palette. Suited to a Tea contains 12 cream eyeshadows that frankly, are disappointing. The colour payoff is minimal and they are all exceedingly difficult to blend. Leia told me that Cargo is used on photo shoots and film sets, so perhaps the professionals have better luck (read: skills)  than I. It is also aggravating that a Canadian company that is located in Toronto only offers free shipping over $50 to the US. 

    In any case, Leia and I discussed the merits of Cargo's Jet Lag concealer (which, in a gimmicky yet kind of cool move, you get 30 frequent flier miles if you purchase this product for $30!) that Leia said is her holy grail concealer - and then she lost it. I think, when I'm wealthier, I'm going to have to replace it for her. I purchased the contour palette - out of stock on the website, and I got the peach colour instead of pink:

    I have to say, the packaging is really cool. The palette is enclosed in what looks like a brushed stainless steel cigarette case. Cargo's logo is clean and unobtrusive, so the whole look is nice. 

    I haven't tried this yet, but it looks like it will be nice. Leia knew the pink wouldn't work for me, so she made sure I got the last peach palette. Thanks, Leia! Just in case you're not sure what each product does what, Cargo has stamped it on each colour. Thanks, Cargo!

    WHAT'S THIS?! A bonus gift with purchase!  
    The Essential Lip Colour in Santa Fe - described as a deep apricot. See below for a swatch (one pass).

    I am deeply in love with this deep apricot. This rookie lipstick went straight to the top and won a coveted place in my purse makeup case. Welcome to the big leagues, Santa Fe.

    And that, my friends, is my first little haul post. Tell me what you've purchased recently that you like or even dislike, and how you're using your newest products. No restrictions! Makeup, hair, clothes, jewellery, I want to hear about all of it. 

    Til next time,
    Amanda

    Tuesday, 13 January 2015

    All About Lips!

    Helloooo pretty!
    (can anyone tell me what Doctor Who episode "Helloooo pretty!" is from? Bonus points if you can!)

    It is ghastly and cold here in Toronto at the moment, and along with a request or two, these are the reasons I have recorded the following video all about lips!

    Watch to see my favourite lip care products that are widely available. I also give a basics tutorial on lip lining and lipstick application. Check it out:


    Finally, a decent thumbnail.

    Here are the products I mentioned:

    For Exfoliation:
    • ELF Lip Exfoliator ($4CAD at Target)
    • Make your own scrub with 1tbsp olive oil and enough white sugar to make a paste; store in the refrigerator. 
    I know of at least two other lip scrubs. Frankly, the BITE lip scrub is basically cherry-flavoured chapstick with microbeads that do absolutely nothing to really exfoliate and at $21CAD, there is no reason to buy it. I don't have any experience with the Fresh lip scrub, so let me know what you think if you've used it. It better be a miracle for $26CAD for 0.6oz!

    Night Treatment:
    Lip Liners:


    Have a great day!
    Amanda


    Sunday, 11 January 2015

    BOT Video! Basic Face Makeup

    Hellllooo!

    I have been working on this video for a few days, and most of the trouble has been with recording a voiceover. I am learning so much about making videos, building the site, connecting to the social media channels and trying to produce good, relevant content. I highly appreciate any feedback or suggestions you have, perhaps you've seen some of these thing done really well on another blog. Send me links and I will check them out and apply any best practices to make this site and its associated channels your go-to place to learn about beauty as you (and I!) experiences changes associated with getting a bit older and a little wiser both personally and professionally. 

    Without further ado, here is Beauty Over Thirty: Face Makeup 

    (UGH! YouTube chooses Horrifying thumbnails!)

    Over time (or so I'm told), the time it takes for me to do this will get shorter. I'll post a new video when I've got it down to five minutes. 

    I can't say this enough: when it comes to getting colour matched for foundation (the first step in finding your holy grail foundation), go to your nearest MAC standalone store or counter in your department store. I have never found a better way of shade matching, not even the Sephora thingy /sarcasm. I say why in the video ;) Here's what you can do:
    1. Tell the artists (staff) nicely in the store or at the counter that you are looking for your holy grail foundation and it is essential that you get matched to MAC's system. They will be delighted to help you out. 
    2. Tell your artist what kind of skin you have, e.g. oily, combination, normal, dry, etc. Your skin type matters a good deal in matching you to the right line. 
    3. Tell your artist if you are looking for a liquid or powder foundation. This comes down to preference. I love liquid foundations, but I think that's because I just don't have a lot of experience with powders. If you don't have a preference, get the artist to try both!
    4. Make sure they try at least one shade in each of their product lines (Studio Sculpt, Prolongwear, Studio Fix, etc). The first time I went to go through this at a MAC counter the artist only tries one shade in one product. Not good. 
    5. Th artist will apply each product on your face where the jawline meets the neck. This is to make sure the shade is the right match not to your face (I didn't know this a month ago) BUT to your neck/chest. Neck particularly is your real skin tone. 
    6. It will become obvious which one is a match to you under the atrocious makeup store/counter lighting. Run outside with a mirror and see if it works in real light. Doing this would've saved me a second trip.
    7. Give your artist feedback and keep testing in store until you have a good match or two. Ask for a sample (which comes in a small plastic clamshell pot, like your paint came in when you were 5) of each match to take home. My artist not only gave me the foundation sample, but also a sample of Strobe cream (does anyone have experience with this? What is it supposed to do?) and a few mascara samples. Neat!
    8. Use the samples over the next week and you should have a finalist within a few days. You can then go back to MAC and buy the matching shade OR... (here comes magique...!)
    9. You can go to Sephora, Shoppers, local boutiques...anywhere that sells the foundation brand you like (perhaps by formula or coverage or weight). Tell the cosmetician or "Cast Member" (Sephora) what MAC shade you are and they should be able to pick out a fairly close match in your preferred brand; maybe a shade off, but definitely in the right vicinity. 
    10. At Sephora (not sure about elsewhere...let me know if you know please!) you can ask for samples of as many foundations as you want. All you have to do is tell them your MAC shade and that you want to try some other brands. 
    11. If the Cast Member offers the Sephora SkinIQ, I would politely with a stern face say "no thanks" and ask for samples of matches to your MAC shade in the brands you want. I got Guerlain, Make Up For Ever and Hourglass samples and they are simply divine. 
    12. Alternately, you can check the Temptalia Foundation Matrix for your highest rated matches, take a trip to Sephora, get a few samples of Temptalia matches, and bob's your uncle! You are well on your way to finding your holy grail. Woot!

    PRODUCT LIST
    • Benefit "The Porefessional" balm for pores
    • Smashbox Photo Finish Primer in Colour Correct & Adjust (green, travel size is much more economical!)
    • MAC Prolongwear Foundation in NW15
    • Benefit "Hoola" bronzer
    • Chanel Joues Contraste in 59 Imprévu
    • Guerlain Les Météorites in 02 Clair

    I hope you enjoyed the video. Please give me some feedback about what kind of videos you want to see, if you know some blogs that are seriously kicking bum at this stuff...Bam! Learning!

    Thursday, 8 January 2015

    5 Ingredients: A Look for Busy Mornings

    My friend Jenn is amazing. She is one of the women that I really look up to and aspire to be like. From the day we met in 2004, I've been lucky to observe Jenn as she breaks glass ceilings, proves that a woman can be assertive and a self-advocate while also being caring and generous. Basically, Jenn is rock n' roll.

    On Monday I posted a safe for work look with a long product list. I clearly had briefly forgotten what it was like for me four months ago when product lists like that one would've scared the devil out of me.  Jenn reminded me when she posted a comment to Facebook saying that while it looked nice on me, the product list made the whole look inaccessible for a lot of people. Jenn made the perfect comparison to recipes she doesn't try because of of ingredient lists like my product list - too long, too complicated, making the whole recipe not worthwhile to try. Both Jenn and I are busy mothers who just don't have time for lengthy sessions in front of the mirror. I momentarily forgot that in my desire to use all the things! I'm back, though. :)

    I accepted Jenn's challenge to significantly reduce the product list, all while keeping the look fresh, professional and polished. It was perfect timing because I had a job interview this afternoon, so I took some time yesterday to really think about how to achieve what Jenn (and I!) wanted. Without further ado, here is the finished look, after which I'll take you through the steps:


    This is seriously the best hair day I've had in...well, I think it's definitely in the top 5 hair days in my life. Let's leave it at that. Splash your face with warm water, pat dry, and put a moisturizer on. Moisturizer will act as a primer instead of needing a sixth makeup product. Oh, and put some lip balm on before you get started. 

    Product #1: MAC Prolongwear Foundation in NW15 
    Time: 2 mins 30 secs
    Where to get it: MAC stores and counters in department stores (The Bay in Canada), and online.
    Price: $38.50CAD/$32USD

    How to Use: 
    • Make sure your foundation is your holy grail match. I talk about this in BOT's very first video ever; i.e. how foundation matching works. I really recommend getting matched to a MAC shade and from there you can often identify your shade in many, many other brands. Use Temptalia's Foundation Matrix and then go visit your drugstore or department store for samples to take home. Anyway, watch the video. :)
    • Apply as normal: Shake the bottle, and then I pump three pumps on the back of my hand and then most of the time use either a complexion brush or my fingers to apply. 
    • In place of a concealer, build up your foundation (put a bit more on) in places you want to cover. In this look I had a few blemishes to cover, and using a touch more foundation to cover them worked like a charm. 
    • AN EXTRA INGREDIENT: Powder. I find this foundation doesn't need a powder to set it, but some do. Powdering will add maybe 45 seconds to the process. 

    Product #2: NARS Blush in "Orgasm" 
    Time: 1 min each side 
    Where to get it: Orgasm can be purchased in Sephora, NARS counters in department stores and on the NARS site.
    Price: $35CAD/$30USD



    How to Use:
    • Orgasm is considered a universal shade, so there isn't much guess work here. You can get this colour, which looks like you have a healthy, rosy glow, appropriate in both winter and summer, in a stick and in cream. 
    • Apply with a blush brush, a fan brush or your fingers in an "L," starting at your temples and sweeping along your cheekbone (if you suck in your cheeks and make a fish face, your cheekbones will be apparent) until you are aligned with the outer corner of your eye. 
    • You can also go old school and touch your finger or brush very lightly with whatever product is left on the bridge of your nose and your chin. This makes it look like you've been out in the sun and the colour hits where the sun would naturally. It's just so pretty and healthy-looking. 
    • Don't apply to the apples of your cheeks. There are reasons for this. Just trust me. 
    Product #3: The Balm "The Balmsai" Eyeshadow Palette
    Time: 4-5 mins (2-2:30 for each eye, longer if you have less experience)
    Where to get it: Amazon Canada, BeautyBridge, TheBalm's site
    Price: $29.50CAD (Amazon Canada)/$39.50USD (TheBalm's site and BeautyBridge



















    How to Use:
    *I got this look from Marlena's (the owner of Makeup Geek) shadow tutorial, so have a look. I used more toned down colours and a few small adjustments to make it easier and faster.
    • Apply shade "Hang 10" all over your eyelid, up to a few millimetres below your eyebrow. 
    • Apply shade "Epic" in a 5mm line up from the outer corner of the eye to just above the eye crease, and bring the colour into the crease in a windshield wiper like motion all across the crease. You should have a shape like the top and right side of a rectangle.
    • Apply shade "Woodie" over "Epic" in a 5mm line up from the outer corner of your eye to the crease. 
    • Blend the colours together in small circular motions up the outside (where "Woodie" is placed over "Epic") and into the crease. 
    • Using a very light hand, apply shade "High Tide" in a narrow horizontal line under your eyebrow and over your eyebrow for a highlight. 
    • For eyeliner, use a liner brush (this kind) with "Woodie," and draw a very thin line along your upper lash line. You can skip this if you want. 
    Remember, you don't have to use this palette. The same application can be used with any four shadows that are very light with a bit of shimmer, a light shade, a medium shade and a dark shade. I like palettes like this because they take the guesswork out of what colours work together.

    Makeup Geek's eyeshadows are divine and inexpensive ($6CAD for a single, and MUG's shipping is very reasonable) and you can email to ask which 4 shades go together well for the "How to Blend Like a Pro" look in the video of the same name. MUG agents are very willing to help.

    Product #4: L'Oréal Lash Out Butterfly Mascara in "Brown Black"
    Time: 2 mins (1 min for each eye, no eyelash curler used)
    Where to get it: Drugstores everywhere.
    Price: Around $10CAD/$8USD.









    Tip: Enlarge the photo to see the wand for this mascara. I will never use another kind of wand again. I have a few extras that are clean and can be dipped in most mascaras. The formula of this is great, but I am desperately in love with the wand!

    How to Use:
    • Twist the wand while it is still inside the tube with the product in it. Don't pump your mascara in and out of the tube, as this lets air into the tube with product inside, posing a potential safety problem. As you are putting the wand very close to your eyes, eliminating as many safety issues as possible is important. 
    • Coat the top of your upper lashes (all the way from inner to outer corners - thank you to a very old friend, Mary Golding-Telford, who showed me how to do this with mascara at age 15! One of the best tips I've ever gotten), then coat the bottom side of your lashes. 
    • Continue to go over your lashes until they have the length and volume you want. 
    • If you have an eyelash comb, comb through your lashes to make sure they are separated. Clumpy, spidery lashes are a big no! Most of the time this magic wand does the trick, so you might not have to comb, but it's good practice in order to keep your lashes separated all day.
    Product #5: Maybelline ColorSensational Creamy Matte lipstick in "Touch of Spice"
    Time: 1min, 30 secs
    Where to get it: Walmart (in store and online), drugstores, e.g. Shoppers Drug Mart/Rexall in Canada, CVS/Walgreens in the USA.
    **This colour is sold out on CVS' website and I'm finding it hard to find these days. 
    **Good alternatives are MAC's "Amorous" and "Twig", which are both satin finish, but really beautiful for an understated look like this.
    Price: Around $8-10 in both Canada and the USA. The MAC lipsticks are $19CAD, and I think $16USD. If you know the US price, please let me know in the comments!

    How to Apply:
    • Wipe off the lip balm you put on before you started with foundation. Your lips are now ready to receive colour!
    • Using the tip end of the lipstick, follow the outline of your lips. For the top, start at the middle of your top lip and line to the outside corner of your mouth, then repeat for the other side. For the bottom lip, line the middle (about 5mm long), then join up to where the top lip line is in the outer corner. 
    • Fill in your lips with a good coat of the lipstick. Split a kleenex into it's two plies, and use one ply of the kleenex to blot your lips. If you have a foundation powder, either loose or pressed, coloured our translucent, dip a brush in it and swipe across your lips (that should now have one ply of kleenex stuck to them!). This totally doesn't count as a 6th product!!
    • Add another coat of the lipstick, and immediately, if you have one, put the lipstick in a small makeup bag for your purse. If you don't have one, you can get them at Shoppers, ipsy.com (a $17 [including shipping to Canada, $10 in the USA] monthly beauty box subscription service; ipsy's hook is that you get a pretty makeup bag each month and the owner [Michelle Phan] is a very popular makeup artist on YouTtube ) all other drugstores with beauty sections, and Walmart. 
    • You put one of many products on top, but I like the matte look and I found the formula very moisturizing, so I didn't use a colourless gloss or lip balm. If you want more moisture, a clear gloss or balm on top will do the trick and give you a nice sheen on your lips. 

    In Conclusion...
    • This low-maintenance look takes 12 minutes and 30 seconds to put on. I actually think the numbers are generous for people who have used makeup before, but I assumed makeup newbie. It took me about 8 minutes to do, and I'm sure I'll get it down further. I like to fuss with eyeshadow. It's my thing.
    • $123 for all products in Canada. Temptalia has a "Dupe List" that show duplicates of these products that are cheaper or more expensive, e.g. this is the list of duplicates for NARS Orgasm blush.
    • If you use an eyeshadow palette instead of just four single shadows that work well together, you'll be able to use all the same application techniques here, but you'll have a different look to this basic one. Fun with colours! 
    • Along that same thought line, you could swap out these pinkish brown lip products for any other that you like. I wore red lips with the shadows (in light to medium beiges and a dark brown) for a "statement" SFW look a few years ago.
    This is the look at the end of the day, post-interview, post-doing a bunch of stuff for my grandmother and driving around in the cold! I think it held up. I can see some of my redness coming through, so next time it will be a six ingredient look - this one but with powder!




    Questions? Comments? Rebuttals? Let me know in the comments. I'd love to hear from all of you regarding this look, what you think of it, how you would change it, all the things! I promise prompt replies. :) 

    I hope you've enjoyed this one. I've got the "reviews" bug, it' just a question of filming them or writing. What do you think?




    Monday, 5 January 2015

    Beauty Over Thirty's Very First Video

    Have a look at Beauty Over Thirty's inaugural video, featuring the five products I use for a basic face. And perhaps more importantly, I'm not wearing anything other than the five products on my face in the video! No colour at all! I feel like that deserves a watch. :)

    Enjoy the video, and please share your basic products and how your basic face has changed over the years. All product info/availability/pricing is in the YouTube description bar.





    A Very SFW Look

    Last night I worked on a look that is VERY safe for work (SFW). It isn't a "no makeup makeup" look, as there are clear indicators of makeup! It's professional and polished, but has some colour in the eyes to make a lady happy. 


    Changes to Makeup Over Thirty - Daywear
    I'm finding out that it's important to recognize that makeup needs change as we get older, just like skincare, fashion, shoes (I don't know about you, but my 5" stilettos haven't been used in ages!) and so many other things. We are moving up the career ladder and what a 25 year-old entry-level woman can get away with isn't appropriate for 35 year-olds who are rushing from meeting to meeting. 

    Polish and professionalism is where it's at on a day-to-day basis and I'm going to talk more about that in an upcoming video.  However, what are we to do with our huge collections? Here are a few suggestions:
    • Toss makeup that has been open for more than two years. If you love it and it's old, replace it.
    • Curate your daywear collection. Keep products that are your holy grails (i.e. pieces you replace over and over because they work so well for you). 
    • Take the time to find your holy grail foundation. Having a perfect match and formula is essential to a polished look. 
    • Invest in mid/high-range products for day-to-day. Brands like Hourglass, Guerlain, Tarte, Make Up For Ever and most high-end designer brands (Tom Ford, YSL, Dior, etc) produce makeup that is timeless, polished and usually OK for sensitive skin. Most can be purchased at Sephora. 
    • Drugstore brands often produce terrific makeup (Wet N Wild. I'm serious!) but I generally use these products for fun or eye/lip liner. NYX is the exception. If you're on a budget, NYX has everything a lady needs. 
    Let me know what you think of this look, and please share your own experiences in changing makeup as you moved forward in your career. I'd love to hear from you!

    Product List
    *(HG) = my holy grails

    Face:
    Benefit The PoreFessional (t-zone) (HG)
    Smashbox Photo Finish Primer in Green (redness reducing)
    Hourglass Immaculate Foundation in Porcelain (possible HG, but I love my MAC!)
    Jurlique Rose Finishing Powder

    Physician's Formula Bronzer in Light Bronze
    Fusion Beauty Blush in Crave (linked because not many people know about this brand)
    Benefit Girl Meets Pearl highlighter

    Eyes:
    Urban Decay Eden Primer Potion
    NYX Milk crayon
    Coastal Scents Revealed 2 Palette (most of the matte pink colours)
    Maybelline Eye Studio gel eyeliner in Charcoal
    L'Oréal Voluminous Butterfly mascara in Brown Black (HG)
    ELF Brow Kit in Dark

    Lips:
    NYX lip primer crayon
    NYX lip liner in Natural (HG)
    Chanel Rouge Allure lipstick in 81 Insouciante

    Sunday, 4 January 2015

    This is the Very Sad Story (tm) of the Chanel Lipstick.

    A few years ago, I was lucky to get a makeup lesson and some beautiful Chanel products from my mum for Christmas. One of the products was a gorgeous lipstick in shade 81, Insouciante. 


    However, the mechanism to open and close the lipstick was new to me - it is like there is a spring inside and you push to close and push to open. I was clueless about this and the lipstick has been pushed in since Winter, 2011. Sadness and tears because the shade is so. damn. pretty. 


    Today, I decided I couldn't take it anymore and asked Grant (my 19 year-old son) to figure out a way to get the lipstick out, and that destroying the outer part is OK. Oh, did I tell you the outer shell and lipstick holder are METAL? Yeah. Not so easy!


    After ten minutes and a broken knife - Grant made the mistake of trying to slip a knife between outer shell and gold part. I have tried this with multiple tools like bobby pins, safety pins, an actual knife, etc over the years - Grant asked for a hammer. This is the destruction. 


    But the shade! So pretty! I am depotting this and will USE IT! Finally! 


    For those who are concerned about the amount of time since opening and I should probably throw it out, I appreciate your concern for my safety. I think that no air has touched this lipstick in a few years, so perhaps that stopped the clock on how long it should be open? We'll see. I'm taking the plunge. 

    And that is what we do around here on Sundays. You're welcome to come over!

    The Base: Skincare

    I learned from reading a fair amount of reddit that makeup really can't do a lot for a person if the base, i.e. your face, isn't shipshape and Bristol fashion. Like all things beauty, I hadn't really paid that much attention to skincare.

    I assumed that any old cleanser would be fine as I've never had to deal with any skin problems, other than some oiliness later in the day in the forehead/nose area - aka the t-zone - and some cheek redness. I used a moisturizer after cleansing (usually with an Aveeno ultra calming wipe) at night and in the morning after a shower. I've since learned that wipes are good for removing surface dirt and makeup, but not much more. I've been committed to Health & Beauty moisturizers for several years and have been working their products into my new routines as much as I can. And that, my friends, was that. Until about six weeks ago.

    I learned from the good people of a sub-reddit called Skincare Addiction (warning: rabbit hole) that as a person gets older, their skin changes and needs more care, if that person cares about their skin. It began as an "ought to care" and turned into an "I totally care" situation because in my regular mirror I started to see the dreaded fine lines where none had been before. This is the reality of Beauty Over Thirty, friends. If you don't deal with these things, then, well, you know what happens.

    The Importance of Being Clean. And Moisturized. And Serumed. And Acid...ed. 
    Alright - let's get down to business. Everyone knows why you have to have a clean face. It's because of science and getting a bit older. And as you get older, your skin generally gets more dry, necessitating moisture(izers) and if you want to deal with fine lines and such, serums can pack a real punch.

    Finally, you need to help your face get rid of dead skin cells by exfoliating. Manually exfoliating with microbeads and that kind of thing is not only bad for the environment, but also not too terribly effective. This is where the acids come in - AHAs (alpha hydroxy acids) and BHAs (beta hydroxy acids). These gentle acids chemically exfoliate your skin and clear out your pores so that the nice new skin forms your base. Cool, huh? I never knew! Just a caveat - if you don't use acids now and have sensitive skin, you might need to build up from 1% to 5% over time. Acids can take some getting used to!

    My Skincare Routine
    To be clear (punny!), this is just my routine to address my own concerns, which are fine lines, facial redness and overall skin clarity. I cannot recommend Skincare Addiction enough, or alternately, Paula's Choice is an excellent source of information. Yes, she has her own range of skincare, but her education is top notch.

    Morning
    1. Splash face with warm water (cold water first thing is insane) and drink a glass of cold water. 
    2. Paula's Choice 2% BHA all over face and neck with a cotton pad. Wait til dry, about 10 minutes.
    3. Health & Beauty Lifting & Firming Serum on face and neck with fingers. Wait about 10 minutes.
    4. Health & Beauty Pomegranate Firming Cream with SPF 15 on face and neck with fingers.
    5. Health & Beauty Anti-wrinkle Eye Cream with SPF 20 on, uh, eyes, out to temples with fingers.



    Evening
    1. Wash face with Aveeno Ultra Calming Foaming Cleanser or Neutrogena thingy. I'm not committed to a cleanser yet.
    2. Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Exfoliating Pad (AHA) all over face. Wait about 10 minutes.
    3. Health & Beauty Pomegranate Night Cream all over face and neck with fingers.
    4. Una Brennan Neroli Firming Eye Cream (just til it's done, then I'll use the H&B eye cream).



    2x Each Week
    About twice a week I do a masque of some kind, usually one of the Balea masques you can get at Shoppers Drug Mart for 3/$5 in the skin care section. I have several kinds, but I like the exfoliating and the microdermabrasion masques best. Here is a good review on Makeupalley.



    A few little things I've learned...
    • You don't need to spend a gazillion dollars on this stuff. No one product I use is over $25. I've got about 1000 high-end skin care samples and have tried them, but not one (not even the Guerlain Abeille Royale serum) is any better than what I use. 
    • SPF is ultra important, even in the winter. Make sure you use it if nothing else!
    • If you're going to use serums and acids, the wait time is essential so that the product sinks in. I've tried it both ways (one quickly on top of the other/waiting for product to dry) and I swear by letting serums and acids dry.
    • When you start using acids, a "purge" is normal, i.e. it's normal to break out as the acids clear out your pores and exfoliate. 
    • Consistency is key. My skin looks frakking fantastic after about 3 weeks with the same routine, day after day. I'm going to post pics so you can see it too. 
    Share your skincare tips and routines with the class, will you? I'm not married to my routine and am interested in what everyone else does. 

    Saturday, 3 January 2015

    The Beginning of Beauty Over Thirty

    Welcome to Beauty Over Thirty!
    My name is Amanda and I'm a 37 year-old advocacy professional living with my 19 year-old (!!) son in Toronto. I've never been into makeup or skincare, and my fashionista mum is my fashion advisor who makes sure I at least have nice clothes to wear. That's where I started from.

    Makeup and skincare had never been a concern to me, but I started thinking about it when my boss-at-the-time told me (marginally inappropriately?!) that I should start upping my makeup and fashion games. I always thought I had pretty good skin, that I didn't need foundation because my freckles did the trick, and hey, I had 23 lip products in my bag to whip out when I had a meeting or a date or something. Good enough.

    My basic issue with makeup has always been that when I put eyeshadow (to me, the most basic of makeup) on, it seems to just disappear, and thus pointless to spend time on. But with the boss' words ringing in my ears, I started thinking perhaps the problem was user error.

    I started looking for eyeshadow application tutorials and stumbled upon one for "hooded eyes", meaning your eyelid is generally covered by skin from below your eyebrows. All it took was a look in the mirror to discover that I've got these type of eyes. WHO KNEW?! The best part? Hooded eyes are also referred to as bedroom eyes. This started my trip down the beauty rabbit holes of makeup, skincare, fashion and jewelry, and so much more.

    I'm still deep in those rabbit holes and I am absolutely loving it - because I'm not doing it to give my mum a girly girl daughter, or to impress a man, and that boss isn't a part of my world anymore. I'm doing it because I think I can be a better version of myself, step by step. Beauty Over Thirty is a hobby-in-the-making with real world application.

    I don't think I'm alone in this. If I'm just learning beauty over thirty, then I'm certain other women (and maybe even some guys) are too. I hope you have a great time on this page as it grows and as we all learn about what works best for each of us. I'm really looking forward to learning and sharing together!

    You'll find the Beauty Over Thirty Facebook and Twitter links on the right side, and I'll be adding Instagram and Pinterest feeds as well over time.