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Tuesday, September 30, 2014


After yesterday's cute kitty post, I wanted to go in a completely different direction with my makeup. Sooo, tonight I bring you some ghost/ghoul/creeper-in-a-dark-alley action! Hey, when in doubt for Halloween, be as ugly as possible, I guess! Haha. I didn't have a particular idea in mind tonight, but this was still decent practice for future looks. For me, this kind of trial & error is really the fun of it, so I figured I'd share what I came up with.

Side note...I am so excited that the weather here has started to cool down, though! I swear I woke up with a spring in my step! Ahhh, crisp fall air...we meet again. Makes me all the more excited to post. ;)

Products Used:
Ben Nye Zombie Wheel (black/grey)
Ben Nye Bruise Wheel  (dark purple)
Mehron Clown White 
MAC eyeshadow in Print

Joanna xo

Monday, September 29, 2014

Kitty Makeup + Bonus NOTD

 1.) Ribbon wrapped wire kitty ears. 2.) Black & orange bow headband 3.) Fluffy hot pink/silver kitty ears

Headbands with animal ears, giant sequined bows, mini witch hats & even googly eyes are a busy girl's best friend come Halloween! They make for instant costumes & are always a fun way to feel festive, even if you can't go all out. This year, I was inspired by the Halloween headband selection I found in Target's dollar section. I ended up buying 3 and decided to do looks based on each. The first in the series is - you guessed it! - a simple kitty makeup to go with the ribbon wrapped wire cat ears I picked up.

Headbands like these will normally set you back about 8 bucks at costume shops & Halloween stores, so I was pretty thrilled to stock up for cheap! I've accumulated quite a few of pairs of cat ears, devil horns & everything in between, but I'm loving the quality & versatility of these.

& away we go!

The look:

Products Used/Helpful Hints:
*Note: All of the makeup mentioned below was applied over a thin layer of my regular foundation.
Mehron Clown White cream makeup - Used for the white/highlighted areas. I applied it with a fluffy brush and then blended with my finger. As you can see, I applied this creamy white makeup to the middle of my forehead (blending upward), down my nose, above my upper lip & on my chin (blending outward).
Too Faced Tinted Beauty Balm in Nude Glow - Used on darker areas of the face such as the hairline, jawline, sides of the nose, cheekbones & around the white areas near the mouth. Instead of this product you can use a slightly darker (1 or 2 shades) foundation or a BB cream.
Lorac TANtalizer Highlighter & Matte Bronzer Duo - I used the matte bronzer to blend & deepen the darker areas of my face & to intensify my cheek (& other) contour.
Ben Nye Rainbow Wheel cream makeup - I used the black to draw on some fluffy brows, line my eyes, draw in the nose & outline the mouth. I did all of this with a thin angled brush. Don't have cream makeup & an angled brush? No problem. You can line your eyes with a liquid liner instead & use a well sharpened pencil to draw in the details.
Fantasy Makers Lipstick in Black - I used this to fill in my top lip.
Wet 'n Wild Lipstick in 525D Retro Pink - for my bottom lip.
Ben Nye Neutral Set powder - I patted this on my face carefully to set.

* I filled in my little cat nose with a random no name pink eye shadow. You can also use a lipstick.
* Apparently, I couldn't be bothered to put on mascara (whoops! I totally forgot) but I'd recommend a coat or 2 and even some dramatic falsies or half lashes to finish the look!

In keeping with today's kitty theme, here is my NOTD (which is actually from this weekend). I used LA Colors polish in Sea Foam & Sassy+Chic leopard nail stickers.

Thassall folks! Until next time!

Joanna xo

Friday, September 26, 2014

Soft & Subtle Night-Out Makeup

Earlier tonight a sweet friend took me to dinner for my birthday so I figured I'd share the look I created for the occasion! I'm still working on the quality of my photos and wish that the camera captured my everyday looks a bit better, but hopefully in due time I'll master taking close up shots of my lids.

The Look:

Products Used:
Too Faced Eyeshadow Insurance Primer
MAC eyeshadow in Maid Of Honor (Royal Assets palette many moons ago!) on the brow bone.
MAC eyeshadow in Crystal on the lid (not passing the crease).
MAC eyeshadow in Vellum on the inner corners.
MAC shadow in Parfait Amour on the outer half of the lids/bottom lashlines
MAC eyeshadow in Nocturnelle in the creases, upper lashlines & outer 3rd of the lower lashlines
MAC eyeshadow in Carbon on the outer 3rd of the lids
CoverGirl LashBlast 24 HR Mascara  in Very Black (top lashes)
CoverGirl Clump Crusher Mascara in Very Black (bottom lashes)
L'Oreal lipstick #800 Fairest Nude
Rimmel lipstick #060 Independent


I paired my wire wrapped crystal necklace (made by my bestie and jewelry designer The Forest Door) with my 42in. rose gold Lisa Taubes chain necklace. I've had my Lisa Taubes necklaces for years now (in various lengths) and never get tired of pairing them up with other jewels. They're perfect for layering and make every outfit feel more elegant.

*Back to more Halloween looks tomorrow! 


Let's end it with a little 90's goodness!

Gonna find me somebody
Not afraid to let go
Want a no doubt be there kind of man
You came real close

Joanna xo

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Colorful Skull

Today I did a look that was inspired by a makeup artist I saw on Instagram a while back. I've been looking for the reference photo but can't find it for the life of me. I don't think I followed her makeup look exactly because I lost the reference photo so I took some creative liberty & put my own spin on it to fill in any gaps in my memory. Overall, I think this is a fun look for Halloween. Hope you enjoy.

Products Used:
Wet 'n Wild ColorIcon liners (Black & White) - to draw out the basic shapes.
Maybelline Color Tattoo #50 Edgy Emerald - to fill in the eye area.
Mehron Clown White+Ben Nye red cream makeup - for the pink areas.
Mehron Clown White - for the teeth.
LA Colors Sandcastles Palette - I used the teal color to fill in the eye socket.
LA Colors Pink eye shadow - (from an old palette) to set the pink cream makeup.

Joanna xo

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

It's my birthday...

Today has got me in a super reflective mood so I decided to come on here and wish myself a happy damn birthday (if only to remember this day & motivate myself to keep up my page!). I know this is a makeup blog but...

After the past year of struggles, I'm ready for some new beginnings & I welcome them with open arms. As much as I dread getting older, I'm looking forward to what this upcoming year has in store & I'm counting my blessings every day. Today I feel especially blessed to have my loved ones around me & to have woken up to birthday texts, comments & phone calls. I can honestly say that they have made my only birthday wish (to be happy) come true this year.

Here's to what I hope will be a fantastic year full of happiness, creativity & tons of fucking makeup.

& please check back for more makeup this week! 

 Joanna xo

Monday, September 22, 2014

Bargain Nail Haul + NOTD

Taking a short break from my Halloween posts, I wanted to include my latest bargain haul which was inspired by Instagram yet again. I went to my local Dollar Tree looking for more Physician's Formula goodies to try out & review (I noticed that people were lucking out & finding shadow palettes, concealers & even lip products) but had no luck at my store. Oddly enough, the aisle I found them in the last time I went had Christmas decorations already in it...Still, I didn't leave empty handed & (after 2 separate trips) I realized I had scooped up more nail goodies than I thought. Lord knows I didn't need any more polishes to add to my embarrassingly vast collection, but sometimes things just find their way into my cart...That's my excuse, anyway.

What I picked up:
 - LA Colors Color Craze Nail Polish (x6)
- Orange skull polish (discarded package, unsure of brand!)
- Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in 460 Queen of the Jungle. I considered this an especially cool find because I remember these polish strips being around $9 at the drugstore.
- Sassy+Chic Fashion Nail Stickers (leopard - no particular name)

From L to R: Meadow, Scream, Orchid, orange skull polish, Sea Foam, Orange Crush, Baby Blue

NOTD/Mini Product Review:
I decided to use Orchid & thought it would be the perfect time to test the Sassy+Chic nail stickers, which I didn't have very high hopes for originally. The polish was surprisingly smooth & it took only one coat for it to be perfectly opaque. It wasn't the least bit streaky & the color is actually really pretty. I also quickly found out that the nail stickers are super easy to apply (just stick & seal with topcoat of your choice). Best of all, they've been holding up quite well! I've showered, washed my hair, applied makeup & they aren't budging. I love the overall design of the leopard but wish it came in slightly different colors. In any case, I think I'll have to pick up some more of these stickers in different designs. My nails are quite short at the moment but this mani is definitely cute & a steal at only $3 (I also used a topcoat found at DT). I'm looking forward to playing around with the other polishes as soon as my nails grow back in a bit!

Joanna xo

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Wound Makeup

As you can probably tell from previous posts, playing around with scar wax has been a lot of fun for me lately. I did this quick & simple wound makeup on my hand the other day & figured I'd share. I didn't have time to paint it up like I would have wanted because I got interrupted, but you get the idea.

Products Used:
1.) Rubie's Spirit Gum adhesive
2.) Ben Nye Nose & Scar Wax (to form the wound)
3.) Mehron Liquid Latex (around the edges & on top of wound)
4.) Ben Nye Professional Wheel Zombie Wheel
+ fake blood (random brand)

For a more detailed "How-To" on applying scar wax/liquid latex, click here & here.  

Also, this little guy (made by Monsterpappa) came in the other day. I think this little keychain will make a cool gift for a fellow classic monster enthusiast. Right on time for Halloween!

Get one here.

Joanna xo

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Simple "Skull"

With all of the different looks I hope to post this season, I wanted to make sure to include some that are really simple but still quite cool (if I do say so myself). I often end up doing makeup in a pinch & today's look is perfect for beginners, anyone who has multiple events/parties to go to (& wants to switch up their costume on the quick) or for anyone who just wants to look a little crazy this Halloween. ;)

Halloween makeup doesn't have to be super elaborate or complicated to be memorable & impressive, you just need a little patience for blending to create hollows & dimension.

Products used (& a few helpful hints):
- Wet 'n Wild Color Icon liner in Black  
- Medium sized wide fluffy brush - I used a cheap limited edition Wet 'n Wild brush from their Spring line despite it's coarse bristles. I didn't include a photo because it was scratchy & nothing to write home about. You can pick up a fluffy brush at pretty much any drugstore or use a paint brush from a craft store (Michael's has up to 50% off coupons online...jussayin'!).
- Any matte black shadow to set

Wet 'n Wild Color Icon liner in Black 

This type of brush works well for a look like this.

1.) Draw two imperfect circles around the eyes. Make them approximately the same shape but not perfectly round. Fill in with black liner & set with matte black shadow. Make sure to apply a generous amount of shadow to deepen the black & make it last. I always apply extra shadow on my lid & crease because that's where the liner tends to fade fastest.
2.) Draw two curved lines down the forehead. Using your brush, subtly blend those lines inward.
3.) Draw two half circles at your temples. Fill those in with liner. Set with shadow.
4.) Draw some lines under each eye and drag them toward your hairline. Blend those lines downward with your brush.
5.) Draw a line across each cheek. Where the line ends (close to the mouth) drag the line down creating a curve. Blend all the way down to jawline.
6.) Draw two triangles on nose. Fill in & set.
7.) Apply black liner or lipstick (if you have it) to lips. Using the liner extend lip line horizontally. Add two vertical lines on top of the horizontal lines you've just created.

Bam - you've got your skull face on!

Joanna xo

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Black & White Zombie Tutorial

I'm on a roll today! ^__^

I decided to re do my colorful zombie look from this morning in black & white because I thought it would a.) look pretty cool and b.) be simpler to explain in a photo tutorial. Since I'm going to be bombarding my blog & viewers with photos of the process, I think it's best we jump right on into it!

Let's start with some music. 

And here we go!

Products Used (& a few helpful hints):
- Wet 'n Wild Color Icon Brow Eyeliners in Black & White - These liners cost about 99 cents at Walgreens (or anywhere that carries Wet 'n Wild cosmetics) & are ultra creamy, blendable & easy to wipe away in case you change your mind about placement.
- Mehron Clown White cream make up
- Assortment of brushes -  For this look I used 5 brushes that I already had laying around. As mentioned in a previous tutorial, I buy cheap paint brushes in bulk from Michael's to use for looks like these. Cream makeup can get pretty messy and difficult to clean so I like to have disposable brushes on hand. You really don't need special brushes for this, just a little patience for shading! The reason I used so many brushes is that I needed one for each color used (black, white & grey). I also used a fluffy brush to set the black liner & an angled brush to go over certain areas.
- Matte black eye shadow to set the black liner (I used a matte black from an LA Colors palette available at Dollar Tree stores)
- White shadow OR translucent powder to set white liner (I used Ben Nye Neutral Set powder).
- Makeup sponge

Step By Step:

The first thing I did was use my white eyeliner pencil to draw an outline of my zombie face. I like to start with white because it's easiest to wipe away & doesn't leave behind as much color as a black pencil would. During this step I planned out the size and shape of the eye socket as well as the part of the face where the flesh is "torn away" exposing teeth.

The next thing I did was go over all of those white areas with my black eyeliner pencil.

With a flat (stiff bristled) brush, I began blending the liner downward/in a bit. This gives the look dimension. You can also fill in the whole face with white first (or whatever color you'd like your zombie to be) and THEN shade, but I preferred doing it this way.

I continued to shade & filled in the nose.

Filled in the eye socket with that black liner as well. Time to blend!

I blended the liner on my eyelids & lined my waterline. At this stage, you don't have to make the liner completely opaque on the lid. The richer the color the better, but it still needs to be set with a matte black eye shadow which will intensify the color & prolong wear. The liner acts as a great base for the shadow. Set the black using a fluffy brush & focusing a black shadow on the lower lid & crease of the eye (where color tends to wear off fastest).

I grabbed my white liner again and roughly drew in where I wanted the teeth to be. They go all the way back!

I drew in the teeth by taking a flat paint brush, dipping it in white face paint, pressing it onto my lip area and dragging it either up or down depending if I was working on the top or bottom row. If you're working on the top row of teeth, place your brush on your top lip (where you wish your tooth to start), apply a little pressure and drag the face paint UPWARD. With the product remaining on your brush, create sort of a point at the top so the teeth look a bit more jagged. Repeat this process (dragging downward) for the bottom row.

Here's a side shot of this process.

Fill in the areas between the teeth with black. You can use a black face paint/cream makeup on an angled brush OR you can simply use your eyeliner like I did here. Because these liners are so soft, though, make sure you sharpen frequently so your colors don't get TOO blended because you'll lose detail.

With a thin paint brush (like I used) or a pencil brush (if you have one) blend those lines to soften them a bit. Blend both upward and downward, that way your "gums" will be a different color than your teeth & outlines.

Next, I decided to grab a sponge & apply some white cream makeup to the areas of my face that were still flesh toned. Here is where you can get creative though! Rather than white you can use any color you wish to make your zombie face really pop!

The white cream makeup blended away some of my black lines so I went over them again with my freshly sharpened black liner to keep them crisp & the detail of the look clear.

& voila you're done!

Can't wait to mess around with more looks. Happy practicing!

Joanna xo

Zombie Half Face

Hey ghouls! This morning I woke up & decided to be productive so I'll be posting a zombie tutorial of sorts asap. I must partly attribute my sudden surge of energy & inspiration to the weather we're experiencing here in Chicago. It finally feels more like fall & I guess this sweater weather put some pep in my step! Yesterday started out as one of the muggiest & most unpleasant days we've had in a while but the temperature dropped drastically by around 8PM. Now it feels like fall with a temperature of about 51 degrees! I feel so much more energized & ready to take on the day so I wanted to share what I got done this morning. Please know that picture size & quality will improve when I make instructional posts!

A glimpse of what I've been working on:

 A little more info...

- As you can see, I started out by outlining the look with a white eyeliner pencil (by Wet 'n Wild)  just to map out where I wanted everything to be. I like to stock up on these pencils (especially during this time of year) because they're creamy & easy to wipe away if I end up wanting to change the look at any point. I always purchase several in both black & white to keep on hand. They're about 99 cents & widely available.

- I took a rather cheap angled brush (the one I used was by ECO Tools) & used it to outline the all of the areas that were previously white with a black cream makeup (Black from my Ben Nye Zombie Wheel cream makeup palette)

- I took a slightly fluffier brush and blended the black edges IN to start building up a little dimension/shadow.

- Filled in the non black areas with a purple shadow (MAC Beautiful Iris + random purples from my dingy old Coastal Scents 88 palette)

- Filled in the teeth with Mehron Clown White cream makeup & set them with a beige shadow (Coastal Scents palette)

- Shaded the teeth with bits of grey (the grey was just black cream makeup mixed with white).

- Added white cream makeup to accentuate highlighted areas.

- Went over black areas again with black cream makeup & set with matte black shadow (from a random LA colors palette available at Dollar Tree stores).

More to come!

Joanna xo

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Fall-Themed Weekend Recap + Haul

I took some photos while I was out running errands this weekend & figured I'd share for all of my fellow fall/Halloween enthusiasts. First, I hit up a few grocery stores (including one of my favorites -  Whole Foods) & then ended up back at Dollar Tree. I got so distracted by their home decor (and ideas for DIYs) that I completely spaced out and bypassed the makeup aisle almost entirely. I was hoping to pick up some more LA Colors lipsticks & Physicians Formula products but I guess I'll have to go back for that! I blame it on the fact that I wandered in there an hour before closing time & ran around in sort of a frenzy. I think mama got a little excited about decorating for the season.

Onto some photos!

Follow me around:

Ahh, Affy Tapples...these always remind me of grade school. I liked this little wooden crate display at my local grocery store.

Whenever I go to Whole Foods I'm tempted to pick up more of this tea (Republic of Tea). The prices of these teas range from about $9 to $20 dollars but they've quickly become some of my favorites to buy, especially as temperatures begin to drop. This time I limited myself to the Dragon Oolong.

Little seasonal touches are popping up everywhere! While scoping out the beauty aisles at Whole Foods, I came across some unique jewelry. I found this little spider guy on an earring rack.

Next up was the Dollar Tree, where I found tons of Halloween decorations.In retrospect, I should have taken more pictures to keep things interesting but I was on a mission, guys. 

Haul time:
Picked up this Everyone Soap body wash (Whole Foods, $9.99). I had been eying this particular wash for quite some time but never picked it up because I still had heaps of other products at home. Since I was on the verge of running out of Caress, I figured I'd give this a go. This was actually in the "kid's" section of the beauty aisle but products by this brand that cater to adults (they had plenty, by the way) didn't appeal to me scent wise. I love the subtle orange scent of this, though, & the fact that it is non GMO, gluten free & not tested on animals.

 & now for some Dollar Tree goodies...These polishes are among the few beauty products I scooped up last night & are all by LA Colors. The colors from L to R: Scream, Orange Crush & Meadow. The striping polish is just black. To be perfectly honest, I have no idea why I chose these particular colors. I think I was just trying to justify buying them by getting colors I don't already own...Yeah...that must be it!

I also found this Aquafina lip balm chillin' on an end cap so I had to snatch it up to try. Now, if you follow DT hauls (on YT or Instagram) or are a frequent DT beauty bargain hunter, then you know that this is one of the most coveted beauty items of the moment. I didn't expect to find it but I'm glad that I did. Needless to say, I'm still a sucker for balms packaged like this (but my favorite is still my Softlips Cube). This product is far less waxy than the EOS balms (a definite plus) & quite moisturizing. It does leave behind sort of a white film on the lips which is why I probably wouldn't wear this under lipstick. I found that it was quite moisturizing, though, so I think I'll keep this on my nightstand to use before bed. 

I was impressed with the selection & overall quality of the fake flowers at my DT last night. I haven't bought any since last summer (for making flower crowns) but I was drawn in by the vibrant fall colors. I stuck to a burgundy, orange & yellow color scheme & managed to sneak my love of leopard (which they also had in a grey & black combo) into the mix. I like the idea of having flowers on my nightstand & these will be appropriate through November. I put together this little arrangement out of 3 separate little bouquets.

This is the glass vase I chose to display my little arrangement in. As always, I was impressed with their glassware.

These are 3 more little bouquets (red large petal flowers, burgundy medium petal flowers & yellow/orange leaves) in a vase I already owned. I put them in there for the time being & set them on my dresser but I think I'll be arranging them differently or making some type of wreath out of them when I pick up more supplies.

I couldn't pass up this little decorative knickknack. I'm considering touching up the paint job but overall, pretty cute to display for Halloween.

Can we just take a moment to properly appreciate these? They're adorable, especially for the price. I know I've gone slightly pumpkin crazy this month but I loved the quality of these & couldn't pass them up! They had many to choose from but these 2 varieties immediately caught my eye. They're also super versatile & can be displayed virtually anywhere around the house.

Lastly, I decided to pick up some cheapy markers & colored pencils because...well, why not?! I've been doing a ton of sketching lately & a fresh set of each will surely come in handy!

I know I always love fall related posts and photos so I hope you enjoyed looking at them as much as I enjoyed taking the photos! 'Til next time!

Joanna xo