Forbidden Fruit

red-lips

With Halloween behind us, wintry glam is here to stay. One of my favorite trends for the season is a glossy red lip. Don’t be shy. I’ve done the testing for you–all you have to do pucker up.

mac

A creamy formula on the pinker side of the red spectrum — MAC’s Sheen Supreme lipglass in Gwi-Yo-Mi is divine. $20, maccosmetics.com

nars

For the lipstick girl who prefers highly pigmented colors, this stick from NARS is perfection. Add a clear gloss over it for megawatt shine. Lipstick in Heat Wave, $26, beauty.com

duwop

In a hurry? Tube gloss is for you. DuWop Venom Gloss in Tulip also creates a fuller look for super-luscious lips. $18, beauty.com

Rock Candy

art-lips-candy-candy-lips-girl-Favim.com-492480Recently, some girlfriends of mine were chatting about their respective makeup ruts. I get it. As much as I love cosmetics, I, too have been known to fall into rhythms from time to time. One famous phase included a face adorned with the exact same products in the exact same hues every single day for over a year. Clinique acne solutions foundation, the obligatory under eye and pimple concealer, brown eye shadow by MAC or Estée Lauder, black Lancôme eyeliner, black Diorshow mascara, pink gloss from one of the above brands. And done.
prom-makeup-for-blue-eyesBut as I’ve gotten older and a little more adventurous with my beauty routine, I truly enjoy mixing it up. Of course there are some standards (many from the list above) that always work and can come to the rescue in a pinch, but these days I am loving experimenting with unexpected colors. Anything that reminds you of a piece of candy you loved as a kid will do. So, what do you think? Ready to have some fun? Here’s how to do it, without looking or feeling even the slightest bit ridiculous.
img-thing
Eyes are gorgeous with mint, purple, even the adventurous orange. You might also be delighted to know that blue eye shadow is not, in fact, reserved for drag queens and beauty queens. These days, rocking a blue shadowed eye is as easy as two swipes or can be as fun as layers of metallics and solids. Greens are also nice; I am quite addicted to the minty color you see above, NARS Cream eyeshadow in Carioca, $24. Build a base with your pale blue or green of choice and skip liner for day. At night, add soft gray pencil against the lash line for more definition. Finish up with gobs of black mascara. You will get compliments. Many. Trust.
coral-lips-
Lips should appear kissable at all times. This does not imply that they should actually be kissable at all times. Perhaps for you this means an opaque hot pink that stops men dead in their tracks but might feel quite dry on contact. Maybe it’s a juicy, ombré gloss that would get all over the mouth and chin of your kissing partner, but hey, we are just trying to look hot here. Who cares if it ends up in a hot mess post-makeout sesh? This is precisely why a lady stashes at least two lip options in her bag at all times.
bobbipeony
Cheeks are more versatile than you might think. If you love bronzer, try a burnt sienna for stronger color this season. If you’re open to blush, come join in on the fun. A punchy peony like Bobbi Brown’s, $25, above, is divine on any skin tone. Hot pink might seem scary in the palette but a sweep on each cheek gives instant glam. Try a powder or a stick, applying a small amount at first and layering until you achieve your desired effect.
bottle_serviceNails are the easiest way to introduce color. Anything goes these days, and throwing a few fun hues together always works. Is there a color you’d love to wear in clothing but have always felt is not your best? Orange, bright purple, hot pink? Here’s your moment.
bouncer_its_me
Nail polish is the universal beauty product and a great way to experiment. Essie’s spring colors are fabulous! Try a pungent peach on all nails but your pinkies, making one of them cerulean and the other fuchsia. Do a DIY French with lavender topped off in lime. And so on. Delicious fingernails remain a fresh and fun way to accessorize your outfit. Let’s play!
Woman Wearing Bright Eyeshadow and Holding Lollipop

Add a Little Glitter

Ready to spice up your day but not quite sure how to do it? A touch of shimmer goes a super-long way. You don’t have to go all out to get into the sparkly season, but you can add bits and bobs to join the trend wagon, while adding some much-needed glitter to your busy, crazy day. Some ideas:

Shadow

A sparkling eye shadow is a great way to brighten up your face. While you might not choose this look for day, it’s a fabulous choice for evenings on the town, a hot date, or a Christmas party. Make Up For Ever is one of my favorite brands, and you can always count on them for eye makeup that has serious staying power. This glittering shadow from the brand, only $13, is a perfect treat you can buy yourself and it comes in a ton of great colors. Sephora.com.

Lips

MAC Cosmetics’ “Glitter and Ice” lipstick is slick and special and works by the light of the moon… or the office. From shimmering silver to a punchy, robust red, there is a hue for you. Swipe it onto well hydrated lips for a perfect shimmer and a pretty smile. $15.50. Maccosmetics.com.

Nails

You know I’m an Essie girl, but I have to give a little love to butter London, one of the best nail polish brands to burst onto the scene in recent years. We knew the Brits had style, but did we have any idea how serious they were about their nails? Now we do. The current collection features some pretty crazy sparkly colors that, when worn with everything from a simple black sweater and jeans to a little spandex dress, will make you stand out in the crowd. $14. Beauty.com.

M.A.C. AIDS Fund: Look Pretty for a Good Cause

Admittedly, this idea stemmed from a conversation with Mom. How often these things do! She mentioned on the phone that she had found a “To Die For” shade of M.A.C. lipstick that I had to own, a bold and gorgeous pink from the Viva Glam collection. I knew immediately she was talking about the Gaga shade, named after my favorite pop star today, Miss Gaga herself. I’d been meaning to try the color forever anyway, so I hightailed to the M.A.C. store and picked one up. I wasn’t disappointed.

Maybe you are not ready to take the Pepto pink plunge with your lips this fall. I get that, I really do. But you’ve lucked out because there are other great new options for contributing to the M.A.C. AIDS fund. I honestly have grown fed up with cosmetics and fashion companies who do a quickie campaign for some cause or another and then throw 10% of proceeds at it, pocketing the rest.

Established in 1994, the fund donates every penny of sales towards affected men, women, and children worldwide. On their site, macaidsfund.org, you can find lots of fun stats on where your money is going. One lipstick, for example, equals two hours of childcare for an HIV positive women so she can go to her doctor’s appointments, or eight individually tailored, nutritious meals, or one pair of school shoes for an affected child. The list goes on and on, and the stories are so inspiring.

So, if you’re not ready to go Gaga, there’s always the standard Viva Glam shades and this fall, in honor of M.A.C.’s new Tartan Tale collection (which you should also check out, and invest in, just ’cause it’s all so cute) they are offering Sir Teddy, too. This little tartan guy makes a great gift for your favorite kid in support of AIDS and is part of the Kids Helping Kids outreach that M.A.C. AIDS fund is supporting. They even have these great HIV-positive-kid-designed note cards to offer as well.

Check out maccosmetics.com for full product lists, pricing, and to shop online. And yeah, pat yourself on the back for buying some cute garb and helping out really deserving people all over the world at the same time.