Tag: nars

FOTD: And God Created the Smokey Eye

There are only two palettes I use regularly these days: Urban Decay Naked 2 and NARS And God Created the Woman. These, along with the Laura Mercier Mini Caviar Sticks make up 98% of my eye makeup. Do they make for riveting, adventurous makeup looks? No. Do they suit my current needs to not be insane about makeup? Absolutely.

For now, let us pay tribute to the high priestess of enablement, Carina, for introducing me to the NARS palette a year or so ago. At the time it was a sold-out limited edition item, but when it resurfaced months later around my birthday I saw it as a heavenly sign. Thus prophesied the Sephora shopping cart: “God hath created the woman, and so God shall bestow unto thee the best goddamn smokey eye to ever befall thy beady eyeballs.”


I’m not going to review the palette, but suffice to say that it’s more than wonderful. There isn’t a single off shade in the palette, and it’s small and self-contained enough to be your sole eye makeup travel item. It’s roughly the size of an iPhone 6 — maybe even a bit shorter!

Compact with a rich shade selection, this is probably the best palette for smokey eyes. And while you can use each shade independently or apply lighter eye looks, I tend to use this palette exclusively for that purpose.

The Look

For this look in November I think I used Kalahari (top right) as a base with my finger, then Galapagos (bottom left) on the outer third of the eye swept up over the crease with a fluffy domed crease brush, but going slightly over the crease as well. This results in Galapagos appearing more like the base shade with the Kalahari shimmer poking beneath.

Then I used a small stiff dome brush to apply Coconut Grove on the outer edge of the eye, blending in towards the lid. I use the same brush to run Coconut Grove over the lower lashline. Add eyeliner and mascara on upper and lower lashes and complete.

I don’t remember exactly what products were used, but I know the following to be true:

  • The blush is Hourglass Diffused Heat
  • Lipstick is NARS Montego Bay
  • There was a lot of Hourglass Ambient Powder action going on – likely a mix of Mood Light and the Ambient Light Palette.
  • I did attempt to contour with Clinique Brow Shaper in Shaping Taupe, with a sweep of Burberry’s Warm Glow beneath for…warmth.

Anyway, the palette is the highlight. I love how easy it is to do this eye look – no thinking required, which is exactly what I need my makeup to be these days.

FOTD: Peach Taupe Shimmer

What a dull name for a look (then again my first blog post is titled “Black Pink Shimmer” — when it comes to titles, progress is minimal). However, this is one of my favorite looks to do when  I want to look bright and glowy without the heavier looks that I typically prefer.

For numerous reasons, I can’t really wear nude and minimal looks – there always had to be some “pop of color” or smoky razmatazz involved. When I went blonde, nude and minimal was totally out the door — otherwise, my hair, face, and lips would be the same damn color. I’d look like Cousin It.

When I went back to dark hair, a deeper and more chocolate-y brown than what it is now, I decided to give it a go. This was several months ago:

FOTD peach taupe shimmer with urban decay naked 2 and dior fluid stick in whisper beige

This sort of light-kissed peachiness was refreshing to wear — no heavy liner, no matte lip. It helps that I had struck upon the perfect neutrals: Urban Decay YDK (described as a “cool bronze shimmer”) from the Naked 2 Palette, along with Dior Fluid Addict Stick in Whisper Beige. I am not a nude lips person. My lips have the pigmentation of a paper bag. But these lipgloss-stick hybrids have transformative powers: resorting sight to the blind, bearing the holy grail…Whisper Beige came to this unbeliever like Jesus came to Thomas, and I doubt no more.

The Look

FOTD peach taupe shimmer with urban decay naked 2 and dior fluid stick in whisper beige

I did this look again to meet a friend for early morning coffee in Brixton. Check out those pre-caffeinated, soulless eyes….wait, that’s how they look all the time. There are differences: hair is a lighter ash brown, skin needs to man up to its problems, and instead of the sheer wash of warm taupe from & Other Stories Canvas Taupe on the cheeks, I used the more vivid Hourglass Ambient Blush Diffused Heat. I prefer the fainter suggestion of color and wish I hadn’t gone so heavy here.

This was also the first time in awhile I attempted to use the NARS Orgasm IlluminatorI used to wear this on a daily basis in my early 20s instead of blush, a fact I had forgotten till now as it doesn’t play all well with powder formulas. It’s a relatively runny illuminator, so if you see patchy blending it’s NARS’ fault. Okay, mine too. I went a bit cray-cray with illuminating, topping things off with MOAR HOURGLASS.

Sometimes the light is better in the kitchen…

The Products


  • Mario Badescu Drying Cream on spots
  • Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer as pre-base concealer
  • Laneige BB Cushion #21
  • NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer Custard


  • Urban Decay YDK from Naked 2 all over lid
  • Revlon Lash Potion Waterproof Mascara


  • Hourglass Diffused Heat


  • Dior Fluid Addict Stick Whisper Beige

Finish Him!

  • NARS Orgasm Illuminator
  • Hourglass Dim Light to set
  • Hourglass Incandescent Light for more targeted highlight


9/30 Nablopomo

5 One-Hit Wonder Eyeshadows

In the Philippines, we get a two week window where spring/summer makeup  launches are actually exciting. The newest corals, shimmery bronzers, and sun-friendly pinks? Pass them over! Then the summer heat hits in full force, and it’s like, “Sunblock. Just sunblock. And someone get me a mop for my face!”

As we succumb to a few more months of being gently baked, lazy girl eyeshadows become part of the routine. A pat of primer, a pat of eyeshadow, a little blending to clean up the mess, and done. Personally I favor shimmery and smokey eyeshadows a bit darker than my skin. I like looking like I’m wearing eyeshadow, but I don’t want to work for it, you know?

So, these are my one hit wonders:


Product List:

  • Urban Decay Smog: medium gold brown with flecks of gold shimmer
  • Yves Rocher Metal Glow Cream Shadow Mercure: creamy metallic taupe with silver sheen
  • NARS Fez: soft warm bronze with medium shimmer
  • Burberry Chestnut: neutral cocoa brown with a satin finish
  • MAC Gold Smoke: cool light pink-based beige with silvery sheen

My poor NARS Fez…it’s been through a lot and never looks the same after each breakage.

All of these shadows are quite pigmented, with Gold Smoke being the most naturally least opaque and Smog or Mercure being the most opaque. (By the way, Smog is also in the Naked 1 palette). All of them have A+ texture and blendability – they wouldn’t make the list if they were lacking!



I didn’t mean to sort them from warm to cool or dark to light while swatching but very convenient how it turned out! I use the darker shades when I really don’t care about putting on a full face, but still want to look somewhat alive. I use the lighter shades when I’m wearing lipstick, and will grudgingly put on mascara because it will look weird otherwise. I use the silvery cream Mercure when I’m lazy but want attention. The swatch doesn’t do justice to how reflective this can get.

Wearing Gold Smoke:


Wearing Mercure (it’s shiny!):


Wearing Fez on the right and…maybe Smog on the left? Someone get me a contour kit!


These 5 shadows would definitely be in my dream palette. I would just need one more shade in a matte chocolate brown to line the eyes, and it would be perfect set in itself. If I were to make an Inglot palette it would look somewhat like this.

Swatches facing sunlight:


What are your one-hit wonder eyeshadows? Do you go for darker colors or something more natural?

Summer/Fall With Plum Lips

Here’s another quick look that I did for an afternoon of writing. On days when I don’t have any meetings or errands to run (and when I’m not wallowing in my own filth), I usually spend my 9-6 at Co.Lab – a coworking center in Kapitolyo. On this day I felt a little restless and uninspired, so I went to Wildflour in BGC. If inspiration wouldn’t strike, at least I could people watch.

I deviated from the usual smokey eye blahness with a duochrome shimmery eye and dark lip.


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Synchronized Swimming

Just wanted to share a quick look that I wore a couple times last week. Not since my mad love affair with NARS Persia have I pursued a bold eye color so aggressively, but after days of smokey bronzes and dry, muted washes of color, I craved something bright. Luckily, I remembered three aquamarine shades that ended up working well together.


I didn’t really want anything elaborate. I just wanted really strong color, a solid curve over the crease with minimal blending.

 The 3 products to get that glittery blue shine, from left to right: NARS Palladium, Illamasqua Chasm, and MAC Powerpoint Eye Pencil in So There Jade. 


Palladium and Chasm actually look very similar when swatched (with Palladium looking a touch more vibrant in this shot), the only difference being that Palladium has silver microglitter while Chasm has gold. Otherwise, they are both a vivid aquamarine (I wouldn’t say there was enough green to call them teal or turquoise).

Palladium is relatively disappointing performance wise, but NARS Soft Touch Shadow Pencils are terrible overall. If you can find even the slightest alternative to a Soft Touch Shadow Pencil, get it instead. I used the creamy base of Palladium as a base then patted Chasm over the lid. Once the heat and humidity kicked in though, it was crease city (even with a primer). Next time I do this look I will probably go straight to the pigment.

synchronized-swimming-4I’m going to need a better setup than an Iphone by the windowsill to truly capture how freaking glittery Illamasqua Pure Pigments are. Don’t even bother putting a base on prior to using any Pure Pigments because the fallout is crazy. I always forget this, so I just apply while holding a cotton pad underneath my lids. But sometimes, the extra fuss is worth it. 

I used So There Jade to line the lower lid and also outline the entire shape of the eye. It holds a distinction in my makeup kit for being an iridescent teal-based color, and ancient.


Look Ma, no blending!

To finish off, I drew a thin line close to the lashline using Mary Kay Liquid Eyeliner then used Maybelline Volum Effect Mascara. I had a bit of trouble deciding what to do with cheeks and lips but ultimately (after some failed attempts) went with NARS Luster and Benefit Cha Cha Tint. 

Das is it. Hope you liked it!