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· November 14, 2006 6:10 PM by Blogger Dain
· November 15, 2006 2:13 AM by Blogger Colleen Shirazi

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The Lipstick Page Forums Beauty & Fashion Blog: November 2006


Sorry...just loved this video...
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Thursday, November 30, 2006 12:26 AM (Eastern)



What sold me on this video were the kids in the school uniforms, plus the cool Middle Eastern style dancing and the grandma lol...and Eva Peron.

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Makeup for Jamaica, part 2
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, November 29, 2006 10:36 PM (Eastern)

Hey, I'm back. I would have written earlier, but the place in which I was staying didn't have Internet access. It's not unknown in Jamaica by any means--the resort I stayed at last year (see part 1) had high speed wireless, free, in every room--but this place didn't have it.

This was my second voyage to this country--which is a great country--okay, there is much about Jamaica that reminds me of the 1970's Virginia in which I grew up...because there still were people back then and there, that didn't have running water, and large expanses of kudzu-enveloped trees, plants, the occasional car (it's not kudzu in Jamaica, but something remarkably similar)...bad plumbing, the kind where you had to jump out of the shower spray any time someone flushed the toilet...heat, humidity, mosquitos...and the most intense, almost palpable, beauty, to be found everywhere around you.

In Jamaica of course the extremes are far more opposed than in the merely pre-central-air-conditioned South of my youth. Step out of the resort and there are shacks, the kind that look like, well, abandoned shacks, until you glimpse the clothesline out back with its neat row of freshly-hung laundry. No dryer, no washer, no...a lot of things are missing. No public schools that I could see; a few private ones. A couple of traffic lights. Even on the resort, the electricity crapped out in a storm (this one had a generator; the other one didn't). But outside the resort, who even has electricity? Some do, many don't.

Tons of bars, clubs and restaurants (as you would expect...again, reminiscent of my Naval home town), a lone Chinese market, a Jockey factory, many of what appeared to be overgrown plantations: a sudden field carved from the tropical vegetation, with what I'll guess is the remains of sugar cane, with a large colonial style house mounted in the hill in the back like a fantastic gem. New construction everywhere: grey concrete with a bit of a Moorish look (okay, more of an Indian style, and pretty cheesy at that). Coconut palms, resort after resort, cruise ships, bauxite mines (if hematite is your stone, it's omnipresent here), the sea of two distinct hues: turquoise (over sand) and deep blue (over coral reefs) wrapping the coastline.

Um, makeup. I brought a slightly different set this time, but it's not a makeup place. You don't need much. It's too hot and humid, too...hard to put a finger on it. In the South, it's been well said, we wear way too much makeup. It's not the climate per se. It's the culture.

I had my usual tinted sunscreen, Nars the Multiple in Malibu, MAC Blot pressed powder, MAC Permaplum eyepencil, Prestige Expresso eyepencil, Nars Babylon eyeshadow duo, Dior Beige Massaï eyeshadow quint, MAC Sophisto lipstick (I'm using this up, made a good dent in it here), MAC Strawberry Blonde lipstick. I wore all of these. Didn't need more, would have been bored with less.

Also, I brought Etro Heliotrope eau de cologne (shouldn't have bothered, it faded instantly in the heat) and Armani Code (this held up better but still conked out after a time). The kind of perfume you can wear in this weather is entirely different: it has to be strong and sweet. Something that smells "too much" in any other place is ideal here.

Hair things: I brought my "octopus" (perfection!), black velvet scrunchie, "geo clip" (only wore it once), and headband with teeth. That's about right although I would like to have some fancy little decorative clips next time.

Clothes: I'm still getting the hang of this. You can't pack minimally, the way travel guides always tell you to do. You run out of clothes. This time I didn't, and I did manage to scoop up some excellent summer clothes, like a turquoise skirt (tiered, but with a pattern of gathers rather than just plain old gathers) and a chartreuse one of the same design, couple of Banana Republic skirts (both white with a print). It'll sound insane but that was not enough skirts for ten nights. I wasn't happy enough with the skirts on sale there to buy them (the good ones were expensive, the more reasonably-priced ones had beads sewn on that I knew would pop off at the drop of a hat). The separates idea is good though, since whatever tops you bring are going to fold up small.

Tops...anything more formal than a tank top will work. I bought a couple of tops there actually, from the shopping mall. Since all of the stores in the mall are owned by Indians, there are some nice Indian clothes there.

I brought a travel size clothes steamer and never used it. The humidity softens the majority of wrinkles out of your clothes.

Shoes...again I just brought my Okabashi sandals. Not the height of shoe fashion but Jamaica is not a shoe place much more than it is a makeup place. You can bring nice shoes but the Okabashi's did me good this time as well.

It was "cold" there for the first few days (not actually cold, but not sweating hot) and I regretted bringing only one long-sleeved shirt. I could have used several. Last time I went, it was hot all the time except the couple of times it rained. So bring a small range of clothes just in case.

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Beauty breakthroughs
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Friday, November 17, 2006 1:08 AM (Eastern)

Once in a while, there comes along a beauty product that actually does change your life. Most of them don't, of course, but some of them do.

This has been on my mind for a while...because once such a product becomes part of your life, you tend to forget what your life was like before.

Here is my personal list of breakthrough products, starting with:

  1. Johnson & Johnson Head to Toe Baby Wash. This has been my facial cleanser for years, literally. It seems to me it was already a "board lemming" (something everyone on the beauty board has to own!) when I joined The Lipstick Page forum in 1998, and I tried it at that time.

    Why is this revolutionary? It is the perfect cleanser for my oily/combo, acne prone skin. It cleans without stripping (though I doubt it would work for dry skin; too astringent), removes makeup (at least the level of makeup I wear...I don't wear mascara, so I don't know if it works for that), does not irritate eyes--being baby wash--making it ideal for removing eye shadow and liner...has a light pleasant scent, is overall pleasant to use, no breakouts...and best of all, it is cheap. It comes in ginormous bottles at Costco...yes, the price has risen, but it's still a mere $10 for two huge bottles.

    And--if there needed to be an "and"--it's terrific for washing makeup brushes and puffs, hair brushes, I use it to wash out my haircolor bottles; any time you need a mild, yet effective, cleanser, there it is.


  2. A daily multi-vitamin. This has made a tremendous difference in my (acne prone) skin and overall well-being. Do some research...and, especially if you are of child-bearing age, consult your doctor before starting on a vitamin regimen.


  3. For acne: consider switching your birth control pill. Some are better than others. Some are horrible in fact. I've gotten the best results from Ortho Tricyclen and Yasmin.


  4. For acne: analyze your diet and check for allergies. My own acne is triggered by particular foods. If I eat a lot of beef that was raised with growth hormone, I'm sure to get blemishes and extra-oily skin. I've heard of people getting acne from allergies to foods such as tomatoes, citrus, or milk. I've heard of someone who got acne because she was allergic to parabens. Give it some thought, see what you're eating and what's in your environment.


  5. Jojoba butter/jojoba oil. The butter form is superior to the oil if you're going to use it as a night cream or moisturizer. The oil is better if you're going to mix it into something else, such as a tinted moisturizer or shampoo.

    This is my ideal moisturizer, and--like the J & J Head to Toe above--it is way cheap (I'm still working my way through my original jar), and the perfect thing for oily/combo, acne prone skin. I use it only at night (I don't use a moisturizer during the day)...it gets rid of flakes, makes my face feel nice and soft--not greasy...it sinks in--and, it helps keep pores clear.


  6. MAC Blot pressed powder. Worth the $18 price tag (did I just say that?), if you have oil or shine to deal with.

    I didn't believe it either, until I tried it.


  7. For thin hair: a biotin supplement. Disclaimer: I am an ordinary person, not a medical professional. I've had thin hair the greater part of my life, I wrote it off as hereditary...but this stuff really does work. Here are some links for your perusal:
    Vitamins (BBC site)
    Treating Hair Loss Naturally (Webmd.com)


  8. L'Oreal Feria deep conditioner. How did I ever live without this? I started out coloring my hair with Preference and used the Preference deep conditioner before, but I like the Feria one better...and you don't need to use the Feria kits to use the conditioner. Just buy it at Sallys Beauty Supply.

    This is "the cure for colored hair"...just use it after coloring, for the next few days. Your hair will feel as if it had never been colored, and ladies, I bleach. No crispy, crunchy hair here.


  9. Nars the Multiple in Malibu. Not necessarily ideal as a multi-purpose product...as a lip color it's gorgeous, but imo too dry. As an eyeshadow it'll do, but I have better shadows. But oh, as a blush, it is perfect.

    I say this because I have been, by and large, far too lazy to put on blush. This cool stick form means I can grab it after I put on my tinted sunscreen, dab it once or twice on each cheek, blend with my fingers, voila! Done! Painless!

    Moreover, this somewhat bronzy, neutral rose color (if anything, it is ever so slightly warm) is perfect year round, because of the bronze. As my skin gets paler, this stuff looks more bronze...it morphs into something of a bronzer. In summer the bronze fades into my tan and I'm left with a lovely rose blush.


  10. Nars Babylon duo eyeshadow. I still love this duo; it's foolproof. Okay, you have to be able to wear orange eyeshadow. If your coloring is cool, I don't think it would work. But for neutral-to-warm coloring, and green eyes...it would work for any eye color, but it's stupendous with green or blue...you've gotta have it.

    I am of the opinion that there is a Nars eyeshadow duo for everyone. Babylon is mine but there are many more to choose from.


  11. Christian Dior Beige Massaï eyeshadow quint. This is the "subtle" version of Babylon; again it is ideal for green or blue eyes and neutral to warmer coloring. Instead of the shimmery tangerine of Babylon, you get a soft cantaloupe shade, along with a surprisingly useful creamy light shade (makes a divine wash), a neat shimmery terracotta shade (looks great with the creamy shade) and a couple of browns (look great with the cantaloupe shade).

    Likewise, I feel there is a Dior eyeshadow quint for everyone. These are $ so pick carefully, but you will get a lot of mileage out of it.


  12. MAC Permaplum Powerpoint eyepencil. By far my favorite eyeliner, both the color...it's a deep, slightly blue-toned purple, with a smidge of (largely invisible) pink shimmer...and the formula, which neither smears nor fades (in fact it's a bit difficult to remove, be forewarned), holds a point perfectly, sharpens without crumbling (at least not yet, and I've owned mine for about two years), it hasn't turned hard yet, still goes on silky smooth... The color is quite versatile.


  13. MAC Lustre formula lipsticks. These are great, especially if you've been avoiding lipstick because most lipsticks look unnatural on you. The Lustres are sheer (the sheerness varies from shade to shade) and come in a range of wearable shades. Plus, MAC lipsticks taste faintly and pleasantly of vanilla, and you can do a Back to MAC (see Back to MAC and Back to MAC expanded for MAC freestanding stores). Plus, these wear quite well for being sheer and shiny.


  14. Chanel Hydrabase lipstick in Moiré. I dream about this lipstick. I do. I have a sample size of it; it's addictive.

    Note: some people hate the scent of this lipstick. I happen to love it, but, well, it's likely to be either love or hate, so you might want to try it before buying it.

    This has a rather strong, candied rose fragrance, which only makes it more addictive to me. The coverage is interestingly "medium" rather than "full" or "sheer." It really is medium. You get quite a bit of color, yet it's more forgiving than a full coverage lipstick.

    Moiré is many colors in one. It goes with everything and always looks right, from business/office/meeting to casual to festive. It's almost YLBB (Your Lips But Better) but it's more color than that...it's got brick red, plum, rose, a neat little twist of fuchsia shimmer (as the shade name implies)...it's on the warm side. If lipsticks easily turn orange on you, it may not do.

    It's nice and moisturizing, lasts well on...no smearing or bleeding...feels light as a feather.


Oh I'm sure I'll think of something else right after I publish this.

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Adult acne rambling...
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, November 15, 2006 8:36 PM (Eastern)

I had a sort of a bad skin day a few days ago. (Though I have an Adult Acne Blog, I feel a little cross-posting can be a good thing.)

What passed through my mind, was how awful it was for me before...the acne itself is not nearly as bad as not knowing what triggers it, or what to do to get rid of it. You feel as if you're always walking on eggshells. You don't know why some days are good and then the acne comes back, which it always does. You spend a lot of time and money on surface treatments, which in my own experience either don't work at all, or else work at first and then stop working, or else do work, but destroy your skin in the process.

Those days are long gone for me; I know what triggered the bad skin day. Simple. I was on my placebo week of Yasmin birth control pills and I was eating regular, i.e. growth-hormone-raised, beef, several times. I should have been more careful, since it was the placebo week; I shouldn't have eaten the beef that much. To clear it up simply means not eating beef for a few days, drinking white tea or water, and piling Differin directly on the blemishes (don't get it on the surrounding skin).

That's what I've been doing, and the blemishes are nearly gone, with no new blemishes. (The sooner you put the Differin on, the better. The first day or so, you can put it on twice. Once it starts working, just do it once per day.) If I wanted to clear the skin more quickly, I would just drink more water or white tea. But the simple idea of avoiding hormone-processed beef, and shrinking the existing zits with Differin...works like a charm.

On a side note, my skin also felt oilier during the bad skin day. It feels much drier now.

On another side note, I have no affiliation with Differin. In fact it was horrible as an all-over acne treatment. It made my skin so flaky, it was scaly. It was worse than having acne...I mean literally...I dropped it and went back to having acne back when Differin was what I was supposed to be using. But as a spot treatment...applied only on the zits...it's brilliant.


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Odd beauty notes...
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, November 13, 2006 11:32 PM (Eastern)

Finally got that Alba Hawaiian shampoo. I wanted to use up my Kiss My Face Whenever shampoo first. It was a toss-up between the Honeydew and the Plumeria...they both smell fantastic, and are labeled "for all hair types." Finally I just went with the Honeydew. I've used it once...and am already a bit impressed. Most shampoos are either astringent, and leave the surface of my hair feeling slightly rough, or else they're emollient, and my hair gets oily toward the end of the day, but this one actually did leave my hair both soft and clean. Not a ringing endorsement as of yet, of course; as I say, I've used it only once. But so far, so good.

Still with Nature's Gate Herbal daily conditioner. I need so little of this for it to work...a blob between dime- and quarter-size...too much and I get greasy hair.

Disclaimer: this is a beauty blog, relating the personal experience of the bloggers therein, not a medical website. It should not be used as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other health care professional. Always consult your own doctor if you're in any way concerned about your health.

Been taking a biotin supplement for about two months now. Very pleased with this. I've seen megadoses of this on the shelf (then there are megadoses of just about every vitamin on the shelf)...in any case, I wouldn't take the megadose. I use the BBC guideline here: Vitamins and the Webmd.com one here: Treating Hair Loss Naturally. The former cites 150 mcg as the recommended daily allowance, with 500 to 1,500 mcg as the "typical therapeutic daily dose" and 2500 mcg as the maximum. The latter mentions amounts from 2000 to 3000 mcg. In my opinion, it's well to start small. If smaller amounts produce results, by all means save your money.

It took about a week for me to see results. I've had a seemingly lifelong problem with thin hair, with hair shedding throughout the day. I'd say about half as much hair falls out now after I wash it. And hardly any sheds during the day (this used to annoy the beejabbers out of me, frankly).

I'm anticipating full results in six months to a year. Good stuff.

Does it really matter if you wash your hair right after coloring it? I can admit I never found out. I've always washed my hair after coloring. looks guilty

This time I did not have time to wash my hair, so I'll end up seeing if it makes a difference or not (followed instructions...rinse color out thoroughly with warm water, apply deep conditioner, leave on two minutes, rinse conditioner out thoroughly). My hair feels quite clean now at any rate. Can't tell it wasn't washed. What was I worried about?

Life is short--keep on being beautiful!


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November 14, 2006 6:10 PM, Blogger Dain said...

Strangely, I had the same experience with Nature's Gate. It's potent and heavy, but not at all emollient in the way most conditioners are. I find it works well if you leave it in for a bit, as if it were a "treatment".

 
November 15, 2006 2:13 AM, Blogger Colleen Shirazi said...

Good idea. I can tell you, I like it. It's a brilliant find.

 
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Some rambles about fragrance layering
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Friday, November 10, 2006 10:45 PM (Eastern)

I never saw myself doing this, even though other women have been doing it for years. Generally speaking, I'm lazy. I prefer spray bottles of fragrance to splashes or "dab bottles," being too lethargic to splash or dab. I keep all of my perfumes with my socks. If they were stored separately from the items I need day by day, they would never get worn.

I used a tinted sunscreen: no need for two layers. I pay $18 for a compact of MAC Blot pressed powder, because it works, meaning I need not touch up my powder during the day, and it lasts, meaning I need not journey to the mall to replace it until a year has passed. I won't wear gloss because lipstick lasts longer on. Eyeshadows must be fade-proof since I can't be bothered with an eyeshadow base.

I could go on (and on) but, ah, fragrance layering. I've just begun to do this.

Of course, more closely examined, there probably is a "lazybones factor" in fragrance layering itself, particularly if it means less frequent reapplying of either scent...but anyway...

My combination of choice these days is Etro Heliotrope and...get this...Armani Code.

Code is the stronger of the two (and I have the eau de parfum), so I usually do only one, or two little, spritzes of this. Heliotrope is an eau de cologne so I'll go for five or six spritzes here. It sounds like a lot but Heliotrope doesn't have much sillage. Putting on a lot of it makes it last longer, but doesn't make it smell that much stronger.

Code wears better, so, as both fragrances fade, I still smell good.

Another odd note...this doesn't work if you apply the Code too high up. I tried spraying some on the back of my neck and it ruined the entire effect. Code has sharper, "higher" notes than Heliotrope (which lacks either kind of note), so spraying it lower down makes it waft pleasantly up to meet the Heliotrope (which tends to linger in the middle of the range).

It all sounds somewhat eccentric, but experimentation in beauty is good. (I tried out several perfumes with Heliotrope before settling on Code.) If you can find a few scents in your stash that complement each other, you will not only expand the use of your stash, you will also produce next-to-custom scents.


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Why are the L'Oreal lipsticks of the stars so hard to find?
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, November 06, 2006 2:37 AM (Eastern)

Mind you, I'm typically the last to see any of the new stuff I've read about for weeks on the beauty boards...but this is almost weird.

L'Oreal has created several "star" lipsticks such as the aforementioned Milla's Plum, Aishwarya's Beige, Andie's (MacDowell) Rose Carmine, etc., along with some stuff for Scarlett Johansson.

Great idea, but the distribution, well, stinks. A (long) while ago I caught a (ransacked) Scarlett rack, and only recently actually saw some of the Scarlett stuff...and now, and only now, have I seen the Eva Longoria, Laetitia Casta, Aishwarya, Andie, and Noemi rack. And some of the stuff was gone here too. No Eva, some Laetitia (this looked like a bubbly pink-lemonade color), couple of Andie's (a sort of warm, pink-red, almost coral color), lone Aishwarya (now this looked gorgeous...one of those pink-brown things but a nice one), couple of Noemi's (deep dramatic plum from what I could see).

I was very tempted by Andie but had the suspicion it would be a little too bright on me. Besides, I'm holding out for that Milla's Plum Dain mentioned earlier--which was so NOT on the rack.

Moreover, there is supposed to be a Gong Li lipstick, and that likewise was nowhere to be found.

Odd L'Oreal note: these don't seem to be as scented as other L'Oreal lippies. It could be my imagination--out of curiosity, I sniffed one of the lipsticks. Same L'Oreal scent but seemingly less so.


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Sulfate *and* paraben free shampoo sighted at Trader Joe's
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 1:55 AM (Eastern)

The name escapes me now...it's not the same as the "Nourish" one. It's not as cheap either: $4 for a mere 8 oz. But not only is it sulfate-less, it is also without parabens, if that's something you're looking for.

The bottle is similar to the Nourish one actually, tall and thin, with clear, colorless shampoo.

I haven't tried it but I did sniff it. It smells good.


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Back to MAC expanded for MAC freestanding stores
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Thursday, November 02, 2006 3:29 PM (Eastern)

Transcript of your chat

MAC Cosmetics Online <MACartist@maccosmetics.com> to me
12:20 pm (2 minutes ago)
From: MAC Cosmetics Online <MACartist@maccosmetics.com>
To: Josephine <>
Date: Nov 2, 2006 12:20 PM
Subject: Transcript of your chat

Recently you chatted with a MAC Cosmetics Online Artist. We hope you enjoyed your Live Chat experience and will recommend us to your family and friends. The transcript of your live chat is below.

General Info
Chat start time   Nov 2, 2006 3:13:11 PM EST
Chat end time   Nov 2, 2006 3:19:52 PM EST
Duration (actual chatting time)   00:06:40
Operator   Jen

Chat Transcript info: One of our Artists will be with you shortly. As a thank you for chatting with us today, we would like to extend a special offer just for you with your next MAC Cosmetics Online purchase. Your MAC Artist will provide you with the offer code during your consultation. At the end of this chat session, you may also request to have a transcript of your chat sent to you via email by completing our Exit Survey.
info: Hello. Thank you for your interest in MAC Cosmetics. My name is Jen. How may I assist you?
Jen: Hello Josephine!
Josephine: Hi there...I asked this question several days ago and couldn't get an answer here. Instead I got an email address and I wrote an email but still haven't gotten any answer. My question is, are there products other than lipstick that MAC offers for Back to MAC? The current rumor is that you can get other products at freestanding MAC stores, but not at MAC counters.
Jen: The expanded Back to MAC program is available at MAC free-standing retail store locations. When you provide your information to be entered into the CRM database, you will now have the option of choosing from 3 product categories (Lipsticks, Clear or Tinted Lipglass or a Small Eye Shadow, excluding all Viva Glam products). The standard Back to MAC program still applies to MAC counter locations, customers who do not provide their complete information or who send their empties to MAC Cosmetics Online.
Josephine: Thanks so much! That's exactly what I was wondering about.
Jen: You're welcome! Thank you for visiting MAC Live Chat!
Josephine: Thanks again...bye!


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