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making faces :: point/ counterpoint

look up? look down? look away.
traditional logic holds that, when you're putting on a face [ok, wearing makeup, but it sounds cooler to say "putting on a face", don't you think?], you should choose to emphasise either your lips or your eyes. i'm not generally much for following rules, but i will say that if you're planning to split the focus, you should be prepared to work carefully or have people assume you're on your way to a convention of clowns or [if you're really clumsy] zombies. i usually reserve those "bold, dramatic" looks for occasions where i'm going out at night, especially with my clown and zombie friends, or where lighting will be lower, so that the effect is less overwhelming.

normally, though, i do generally try to choose one point of visual focus, alternating from one to the other. i've never developed a clear preference either way. obviously, if you have a clear preference for one feature over the other, that would probably be what you'd want to work on. in a hurry, it's a lot faster to do a look with a bold lip, whereas more dramatic colour around the eye will be more finicky, but tend to have more impact. but why choose? try both!

here are a couple of looks i've tried out recently, one on each side of the fence.




up top

this isn't a super-dramatic smoky look, but the eyes are definitely the focus. the colours at play here tend to be more obvious when you get up close, which is something i always like to do. what appears sort of charcoal from a distance actual has a lot of gold and khaki tones when you see it sitting next to you, or across the table over a glass of red wine at a candlelit restaurant.

one of the things that actually inspired me to do this was that i wanted to pull out my favourite mac blush ever, a slightly pink taupe shade that works perfectly as a contour on porcelain skin called "strada". for some reason, probably because i liked it, mac chose to discontinue the shade last year. however, it will be returning as part of their collaboration with designer gareth pugh, due out in november. definitely worth picking up for anyone with a lighter skin tone.

i've labeled other limited edition products with an asterisk. although they may not be available, it's easy enough to find duplicates. 

products used ::

face [same for both looks]::
mac prolongwear foundation "nc15"
diorskin nude hydrating concealer "001"

eyes ::
mac e/s "creamy bisque"* [light cream with fine shimmer]
mac e/s "gaellic gold" [frosted dirty gold]*
chanel e/s "khaki vert"
mac pigment "the family crest"* [black with gold/ bronze shimmer]
mac eye kohl "smolder" [black]
diorshow mascara

cheeks ::
mac mineralize skinfinish "perfect topping"* [beige with hint of lavender-pink]
mac blush "strada"* [slightly pinkish light taupe]

lips ::
mac l/s "call my bluff"* [sheer grey-taupe]

suggested replacements ::
creamy bisque = mac dazzlelight; gaellic gold = nars etrusque [gaellic gold is also being reissued in one of mac's holiday palettes this year], the family crest = mac dark soul pigment, perfect topping = mac soft 'n' gentle [has a lot more shimmer]; strada = wait for november re-release, call my bluff = mac freckletone

down low

i adore fuchsia. i've already talked about this at length, but when it comes to trying out a "punch in the face" lip, it's a great choice. red is more classic, purple is more eccentric and i love both of those options, but i find that fuchsia is a shade that virtually anyone can pull off- light or dark, warm or cool- it tends to cooperate really well with skin tones.

in this case, i used nars "funny face" which is a red-toned fuchsia shade. it's a fairly matte texture and after wearing it, you'll probably want a little lip balm [particularly in fall/ winter], but it has a great impact. in this case, i paired it with fairly subtle, shimmery shades from the urban decay naked palette. gives a little colour to the eye area, but never competes with the lips.



products used ::

eyes ::
urban decay e/s "virgin" [shimmery off-white]
urban decay e/s "sin" [frosted pinkish beige]
urban decay e/s "hustle" [glittery brown plum]
urban decay e/s "sidecar" [rosy medium bronze]
mac eye kohl "i get no kick"* [shimmery champagne]
diorshow mascara

cheeks ::
mac mineralize skinfinish "by candlelight"* [warm golden pink]
mac blush "her blooming cheek"* [bright cool fuchsia]

lips ::
nars l/s "funny face" [bright reddened fuchsia]

suggested replacements ::
i get no kick = nars rue larger than life eye liner "rue bonaparte"; by candlelight = soft 'n' gentle [a better match would be "porcelain pink", which is also limited, but currently available as part of mac's "fall colour collection"], her blooming cheek = full fuchsia

so, which would you choose for yourself [if, for some weird reason, you had to]: bold eyes or bold lips?

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