Product Lust: Tarina Tarantino @ Sephora

The new makeup collection from Tarina Tarantino occupied four whole pages in the Spring 2010 Sephora catalog. Clearly, the company is excited about this launch!  And while the beautifully packaged pink sequined designs have been available online for several weeks now, they are set to debut in stores any minute. I recently caught a few early glimpses  of the developing display and, from the few products I investigated, the line looks to be pretty darn fabulous! 

In my brief perusal, I immediately noticed the two products that easily embody Tarantino's sparkle overload aesthetic.  For starters, the Tarina Tarantino Pearl Glow Primer ($32) is infused with pearl powder that gives the skin a luminous glow while priming it for additional makeup. On the skin, the Pearl Glow absorbs quickly, leaving a silvery opalescent finish without any trace of greasiness. This could easily be mixed in with a moisturizer for a very pretty, youthful glow. And while Tarantino is known for her extravagantly bejeweled designs, this product will add just a hint of shimmer that even the most restrained and tasteful among us would love.

If a more pronounced glittery look is what you are in the market for, then the Tarina Tarantino Sparklicity Shimmer Dust ($39) is near-perfect. It comes in a very classy bottle with an old fashioned balloon pump spray that would look exquisite sitting on anyone's dresser. The product itself is a fine, microglitter that can be gently spritzed on to illuminate and accent the face, shoulders or even hair. Described by the sales associate as "glitter for grown ups," this product is the perfect way add some sexy sparkle without looking like you are on your way to a rave. It is more immediately noticeable than the Pearl Glow, but still remains very flattering and not distracting in the least. 

Those were my two initial finds, but stay tuned as the rest of the collection looks to be similarly gorgeous!


High vs. Low: Benefit vs. Soap & Glory

When I saw Soap & Glory Marvelips! Lip Crayon ($10) at Target, I stopped in my tracks.  My interest sprung from the fact that it looked very much like a more expensive product,  Benefit Cupid's Bow Lip Shaper ($28). Released a few years back, Benefit's product is a duo-ended pencil, one side being a pearly pink highlighter, the other being a darker mocha mauve lip pencil. By using the highlighter end to accent the cupid's bow and the darker end to contour the lower lip, the Cupid's Bow promises to perfect your pucker. Marvelips! double-ended lip pencil promises much the same thing, but at a third of the price. That is a significant price difference, in my book. I should note, however, that the Benefit product also comes with a fancy lip brush to help with application, so that probably factors into the almost $30 price tag as well.

To be clear, I do not own a Cupid's Bow, but have played around with it a few times at the store, so I'm not completely unfamiliar. I do, now, own a Marvelips! and it is pretty great. 


Product Lust: Tarte Natural Gel Lip Stains

These little gems hold the #1 spot on my "most wanted" list. As a follow up and extension of their best-selling cheek stains, tarte has revised their long-wearing formula for the lips and come up with the Tarte Natural Gel Lip Stains ($24). The result is a gorgeous collection of six wearable shades that are sure to knock your socks off!
paraben free · petro-chemical free · pthalate free · sulfate free ·gluten free ·tricolsan free ·talc free · fragrance free · MEA/DEA/TEA free · glycol free ·formaldehyde donor free ·cruelty free· GMO free

Shades include:
  •  moody (deep berry)
  •  amused (bright pink)
  •  lust (red)
  •  enchanted (rose)
  •  charmed (light pink)
  •  joy (peach)

These have only been available for a few weeks, but my local Sephora is completely sold out of them already. Can you believe that?!  I'm pretty bummed about it because I seriously cannot wait to try them. And if the cheek stains before them are any indication, I expect that we'll be seeing many more gorgeous lip shades to follow in the future. 

tarte Natural Gel Lip Stains are available exclusively at Sephora stores and


NOTW: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Uptempo Plum

Today's NOTW comes from the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Color collection. The color that I'm wearing, Uptempo Plum ($5), is super cute. It has a dark purple base with red and gold shimmer -- which is more obvious in the bottle in this picture.  The camera doesn't pick up the shimmer as well on the nails, but it comes across in real life. While I love OPI Visions of Sugarplum in all of its flashy gorgeousness, this polish is a toned-down variation that is just as pretty.  Uptempo Plum is a great basic vampy polish at a bargain price.

But because I haven't reviewed anything from this series before, I'll make a few comments on the formula, etc. The Insta-Dri line has the Sally Hansen features a flat brush with a rounded tip. I actually like this brush even though my nails are too wide to be able to accomplish the "one stroke" application. The polish claims "insta-dri," results that "dry to a shiny finish in 60 seconds." I'll just go ahead and say that didn't exactly happen in my hands. The formula does dry pretty fast (less than five minutes) but was still vulnerable to smudging for a while after that. The shiny finish is debatable. While the polish isn't completely matte, I wouldn't call it shiny. It's kind of half-matte finish, if that makes any sense. With regard to the claim of "one coat coverage," in my opinion the polish definitely looks better with two coats. I suppose that you might be able to get away with one really thick coat, but I think that it looks better with two.

Overall, I think that the polish looks and performs similar to a more expensive salon brand. The lack of a high gloss finish is basically the biggest criticism that I have and it is easily remedied by a glossy topcoat. Available in 32 bright and trendy shades, the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Fast Dry Nail Color is an affordable drugstore choice for pretty nails.


Workaday Touch-Up Makeup Kit

If you are anything like me, beauty-emergencies are a common part of every day life. Ok, maybe emergencies is a bit of an overstatement, so maybe something like beauty inconveniences, mistakes or accidents works better.  Whatever you want to call it, you know what I'm talking about: the smudge of eyeliner that has mysteriously migrated up to your eyebrows, the unfortunate creasing on a crappy new eye shadow, the major nail polish chip or snaggy hangnail...  These things happen to all of us and it is always good to be prepared.  

Years ago, someone gave me a small 4x6 inch zip bag (similar to that cute green bag that is on sale for $9).  It went unused for a long time until I decided that I had had enough of these beauty irritations and needed to pack an "emergency kit" that I could carry with me wherever I went. Although similar to the Wedding Emergency Kit, my Workaday Touch-Up Kit has considerably fewer items. Since I don't want to be carrying around three pounds of crap every day, this kit needs to be streamlined down to the absolute essentials.  Here is what you'll find inside:  

All of this fits neatly in the little pouch which then migrates down to the bottom of my work bag. On weekends, I pull it out and toss it in my purse, ensuring that I am never without these essential items. Certainly, they don't cover every possible situation, but I think that they are enough to keep me looking more on the "pulled together" than "hot mess" end of the spectrum. 

Anyway, I highly recommend this strategy for work week survival. What do you think? Do you have a Workaday Touch-Up Kit? What's in yours?


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