eyeliner

How to: Gel Eyeliner Cat-Eye

how to gel eyeliner 1If you know me in person or have previously read my blog, you may know I’m a sucker for a great cat-eye. Not only are simple black flicks remarkably good at reminding people that yes asians do have eyes, but are also a simple way to sex up a plain, barely-there makeup face. Paired with either a neutral shadow and lip or a bold smoky eye and red hot lip, cat-eyes are versatile and timeless – a style every girl should be able to whip out of their back pocket.

For you beauty newbies who are intimidated by the infamous cat-eye, I’ve broken down the process into 4 steps using gel eyeliner.  Although I prefer liquid eyeliner, specifically Stila’s Stay-All-Day Waterproof Liquid Liner, it can be a bit tricky to use for first-timers, and definitely requires practice. Gel eyeliner, however, is super easy to use as a fine tipped brush allows for both control and precision when applying. My brush of choice is a small angled synthetic brush, such as the Sigma Small Angle E65 shown above. Classic pointed eyeliner brushes work too, however I find angled ones apply the line thicker and more quickly in addition to simplifying the creation of the flick! My staple gel liner is MAC’s trusty Fluidline in Blacktrack – it’s richly pigmented, doesn’t dry out (I’ve had mine for years) and has a smooth creamy texture that glides onto the lid.

*note that these steps are designated for after eyeshadow completion!

how to gel eyeliner 2Step 1: Start by creating a base line. Drag your brush from the inner corner of your eye towards the outer corner in a straight line. It’s okay if the line doesn’t hug your lashline near the outer corner – the overall finished line should be thinner near the inner corner and thicker near the outer corner. The bottom of the line can be jagged (we’ll fill this in later) but be sure to make the top of the line as smooth as possible.

how to gel eyeliner 3Step 2: Draw the flick! Extend a line from your lower lashline towards the end of your brow. The line should be angled as if it is a continuation of the lower lash line. Making sure the two “flicks” are at the same angle on both eyes can be tricky, so be sure to keep cotton swabs close by in case you have to adjust the flick or redo it completely.

how to gel eyeliner 4Step 3: Connect the line you drew across the lid to the flick! This can be accomplished easily with the angled brush by positioning the sharp angled tip of the bristles at the edge of the flick and sliding it towards line #1. Make sure the transition is smooth and smudge-free and try to keep the overall curve of the eyeliner as close to the natural curve of your eye as possible.

Step 4: Fill in the small gap between your horizontal line and your lashline. One of the most important parts of wearing eyeliner is to keep it close to the lashes! Finish with mascara and your eye is complete!

Now you are ready to rock your cat-eye look! This type of eyeliner is definitely not everyone’s cup of tea, but it is a classic Olivia look. I love wearing it with neutral eyeshadow so the crispness of the black is accentuated. How do you like to wear gel eyeliner?

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Rimmel Scandal Eyes: A Review

 

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Bulletproof Beige all over the lid, Black as liner, Brown along bottom lashline, Nude on waterline

Bulletproof Beige all over the lid, Black as liner, Brown along bottom lashline, Nude on waterline

 

Rimmel is one of those brands that is huge in the UK, but is rather hit or miss here in the States. We don’t get some of Europe’s most beloved drugstore products, such as their Wake Me Up Foundation or their Apocalips, but instead receive a small selection of usually mediocre products. Lately, however, it seems like Rimmel is trying to make a comeback stateside, with the US release of the Kate Moss lipsticks and now, the Rimmel Scandal Eyes line.

Above, you can see I tried out quite a slew of these pencils: the Eye Shadow Sticks in 002 Bulletproof Beige (a shimmery champagne with a slight pinky undertone) and 003 Bad Girl Bronze (a warm, coppery bronze), and the Waterproof Kohl Kajal in 001 Black, 003 Brown, and 005 Nude.  The shadow sticks claim to last 24 hours and be completely waterproof, and I have to say, they live up to these claims. I obviously didn’t wear the shadow for a full 24 hours, however I have worn both shades all day long, and they held up extremely well. I found that even without a primer these creamy pencils did not crease on my lids which is fantastic, as the NYX Jumbo Eye Pencils definitely do. They are also incredibly pigmented, as you can see in the picture below, which is an additional plus over the NYX alternative.  Bulletproof Beige is a great everyday shade, and I can see myself using Bad Girl Bronze as a base for a fantastic bronzey smoky eye. Would you guys want to see a post on that?

The regular eyeliners are not quite as ahmazing as I expected. They do last a pretty long time, but the black one always smudges on me by the end of the day, leaving an unpleasant black ring around my lower lashline. Rude. The nude one is a standout though, as it is neither too pinky nor too white for the waterline. I also have NARS Rue Bonaparte, which is a nude pencil too, but find it a bit too pale for me when I’m in any other season than winter, so the Rimmel one was warmly welcomed.

Rimmel Scandaleyes 3Overall I’d say both types of pencils are comparable to NYX’s versions in that they are similar styles and both extremely affordable! What do you think of Rimmel products?

Minimal Makeup

DSCN2047DSCN2051Minimal makeup means different things to different people. To me it’s my routine on those days when I wake up late, exhausted, grouchy, and in a time crunch. Yes, there have been those days before a neuro exam or two where I have just rolled out of bed and staggered to class without a trace of makeup on, but those are special exceptions. Usually I stick to my “essentials” pictured above if I’m in a pinch.

On these minimalistic days I will stick with a base with a light coverage, such as the Dr. Jart+ Water Fuse Beauty Balm (reviewed here), and quickly blend all over the face. To cover the pesky undereye circles my sleepless night has so kindly given me, I dab some Bobbi Brown Corrector in Light Bisque onto my ring fingers and tap underneath my eyes, magically concealing unsightly discoloration. Sometimes I just don’t feel like dealing wtih eyeshadow but feel like my eyes still need a bit of a pop so I swipe this Sephora Prisma Chrome Eyeshadow in Shimmery Sand on my lid with a finger and blend into the crease. This product has been discontinued, which is a shame since this is the perfect color for my “no makeup makeup” look: a shimmery sheen of golden delight that is similar enough to my natural lid color to seem subtle yet still radiant. To tight-line and line my upper lash line I always use my Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner (reviewed here), and my favorite mascara is Maybelline the Falsies Flared Waterproof. On my waterline I used my nude eyeliner trick and on the bottom lash line, my NYX Slide On Pencil in Brown Perfection for subtle definition. To frame my face I filled in my brows as usual with the NYX Auto Eyebrow Pencil in Charcoal and Benefit Instant Brow in Medium. Last but not least I dabbed on some of my favorite neutral blush: Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in Exposed. This pinky-brown nude is perfect for every day as it is not only matte, but leaves your cheeks looking naturally flushed for the entire day.

I would say that the most important features to highlight in minimal makeup would be the skin, eyelashes, and brows. It’s amazing how little makeup you can get away with if your skin looks great. Just a little concealer under the eyes and on red spots alone can make you look a thousand times more put together. I would also recommend wearing a natural blush – it brightens the face and can make you  look more alive and healthy. A girl should never skimp on the lashes either! Mascara is not only one of the most used beauty products out there but is one of the most effective in transforming a face. I’ve always been jealous of those girls who only needs an eyelash curler and mascara (sadly that is not me) to define her eyes. One last feature that should always be attended to (in my personal opinion) is brows. A well defined brow gives the face structure and enhances the rest of the facial features. If you’re not a fan of filling them in, they should at least be combed through!

What are your minimal makeup essentials?

Olivia