Saturday, April 17, 2010

Straightener VS Straightener

Sorry for our absence here at Periodic Beauty Reviews, I think all three of us reached our saturation point with beauty products after this long! You should see Jeanne's epic collection of makeup and nail polishes, it is truly impressive.

I have to say, the most exciting product I've received upon request for review samples has been the H2pro Turbo Trigger Flat Iron, provided kindly by Janice McCafferty PR. You've seen my travels and travails with curly to straight hair, it's been a long process and I have been through a lot of different straighteners. I struggled with my hair, feeling like it was unprofessional when it was frizzy or curly and looked unkempt. Years (and a couple of hairstylists) later, I've somewhat come to terms with it being wavy or curly, and learned how to style it so people at work don't ask what's wrong with me because my hair is crazy. Part of this process did involve learning which tools to use and how to use them effectively, which most women know is excruciating and filled with heartbreak. Allow me to illustrate.

First, there was the Tescom Ione Hot Air Brush that I bought in Japan in 2004, maybe 2005--it's lasted me five years and while I don't know what that science is that they put inside what is essentially a differently-shaped hair dryer with a brush attached, it's made my life a lot easier. It does not, however, get my hair straight, or allow me to restyle or correct dry hair. It gives me lovely manageable waves, but it is obviously geared towards ladies with long hair who want to give themselves an easy, straight blow-dry. Having short hair in a bob as I do, it's fast and easy to use. Even my mother, whose hair is shorter, steals it from me to use. Having a round brush and blow dryer in one tool is super convenient, everybody, especially when all most hairstylists will do to my hair is insist that I MUST dry it straight with a round brush every single morning (yeah, right!).

Then, I invested in my very first flat iron. The drugstore staple millions of teenage girls know and love, the Remington Wet2Straight. I thought it was a huge splurge. My friend A., who always had lovely straight long hair with bangs, recommended I invest in a ceramic tourmaline flat iron because it was the best thing that had ever happened to her besides her husband, but I just couldn't justify the expense. I spent years trying to straighten my hair with the Wet2Straight's hand-burning metal plates that caught and pulled hairs right out of my head. Little did I know, actually flat-ironing wet hair is incredibly damaging for your hair shafts! What! Millions of teenage girls, beware!

Now, since I've used the H2pro straightener in the last few months, I've definitely noticed a difference in the smoothness, health, and ease of my hair compared to the Remington model. The ceramic plates tuck in up under the barrel of the iron, so there are no seams or catches where you'll end up pulling out and frying your own hairs (ouch). The plates are thin enough to make soft curls if you arc the straightener as you straighten, so all those ends will curl under nicely, unlike the Remington, which just gives you locks of hair that have been pressed as if under an actual hot metal iron. I've been using the H2pro on dry hair to avoid damage, as instructed by my stylist at Legar Salon here, who uses a similar ceramic tourmaline model.

I had my hair cut a few weeks ago and while we were discussing the various benefits of different hair straighteners and relaxing treatments, my stylist said, "I know it's raining out and you wanted to go for big, retro curls, but why don't we give you a super-straightened style today and see how long it is?" I went for it, and in a flash, I had STICK-STRAIGHT hair, which I can never achieve at home on my own! I looked like Mariska Hargitay walking out of there, which was pretty much the greatest thing ever. Using the H2pro, my hair hasn't been frizzy or frazzled, I haven't burned myself once on the plates (the things we do for beauty!) The only drawbacks I've found for the H2pro straightener are that the iron has no hinge locking mechanism, so it always sits open, making me worry some small child could reach up and grab a hot iron and burn themselves, and the temperature dial is confusing. Certainly the Remington Wet2Straight makes that easier for you, with a locking hinge and color-coded settings for heat.

The H2pro is making me learn more about my own hair, like what temperatures work best and how to actually straighten the back without looking like a mess. Even though I'm not a straighten-every-day gal, it's nice to have the option and it's even nicer when getting curly to go straight is easy with a tool like the H2pro straightener!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

It Girl Details: Bond no 9 Andy Warhol Lexington Avenue and Revlon Fantasy Lengths

As promised, here's the breakdown of my Edie Sedgwick look!

I used my standard base for my face -- Perfekt Skin Perfection Gel as a primer, Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer as foundation, Dior Skinflash Radiance Booster pen under the eyes, and Cargo blu_ray Pressed Powder to finish.

I did my eyebrows while I let my eyeshadow primer (Too Faced Shadow Insurance) set, using the Maybelline Expert Brow Pencil in Dark Brown. Normally if I do my brows, I'd use my DuWop brow wax and powder duo, but since Edie was known for her heavy brows, I went to town with the pencil. It seems a little red to me, as I didn't want to go for a nearly-black eyebrow pencil, but it did its job.

For the eyes, after my primer set, I used the white side of the MAC Persona Screen Vinyl Mineralize Eyeshadow (from 2006's A Muse collection) all over the lid and up to the browbone. I then used MAC Eyeshadow in Suspicion (black with a little gold, from Nocturnelle in 2006) over the lid and really packed it on as much as it could go. I lined the upper and bottom lids with MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack, being sure to get really thick lines on the top, as well as Stila Kajal pencil liner in Pearl (white) at the inner corner. I used Too Faced Lash Injection mascara, and then I added false lashes on top.

I received several pairs of Revlon Fantasy Lengths eyelashes to try out, and the pair I used for Edie are the Intensifying with the self-adhesive strips. I've worn false eyelashes before for stage and other costumes, so I'm very familiar and comfortable with wearing false eyelashes. I know the tricks and tips (trim them from the inner corner, use a toothpick to apply eyelash glue), but I haven't worn them in a long time due to wearing glasses all of the time, and worrying that the eyelashes are going to thwack against my lenses. Since I knew I'd be wearing contacts, and you can't be Edie without false eyelashes (you just can't), I was glad I had lashes ready to go.

The Revlon Fantasy Lengths are particularly interesting because of the self-adhesive strip, which you actually remove after wearing -- the lashes themselves are a standard strip, so once you're done with the two sets of self-adhesive strip included in the box, you can use them with regular eyelash glue. They stayed extremely well and stayed on through the night, which was actually a little bit of a problem at first when I initially applied them and needed to adjust them (as you do). I even had a mighty sneeze at the end of the evening, and worried I might have sneezed my lashes off (a reasonable fear!), but they stayed right on.

At the end of the night, when I pulled them off, I noticed some of the pigment from my eyeliner and eyeshadow was stuck to the adhesive strip (as in, the top of the adhesive strip was shimmery white, and there was a little bare line on my eyelid once I removed the lash strip), so that would be something to watch out for. Also, because of the thick black self-adhesive, I'd be a little apprehensive that they'd be more apparent if you were wearing a non-black eyeliner; since I was wearing thick black eyeliner and shadow, they blended right in, but if I wanted to wear, say, blue or green liner, I think the adhesive line would be much more apparent than if I used standard dries-to-clear lash glue.

I finished off with the Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in nude on my cheekbones, used the Blacktrack Fluidline again for Edie's beauty mark, and lined my lips with MAC lipliner pencil in Subculture before applying MAC Charm Factor lipstick (once again from the 2006 A Muse Collection, and one of my 2007 Favorite Things).

Bond No 9 Andy Warhol Lexington AvenueBut that wasn't all -- I wanted to wear perfume for Edie, too. While I initially thought I'd wear Guerlain Shalimar, which is a classic, I realized I had samples of two of the Bond No. 9 Andy Warhol perfumes: Silver Factory, which I had a sample of from my favorite perfume boutique, and Lexington Avenue, which I received as a press sample. While technically, yes, Edie was part of the Silver Factory days, I felt that Lexington Avenue was a better fit to wear with my (fake) fur and my lashes, as it was much more warm, feminine, and delicious.

The notes for Lexington Avenue are peony, orris, patchouli, sandalwood, cardamom, fennel, almonds, cumin, and crème brulee, which makes it a floral and woody gourmand perfume. It's powdery and vanilla-y, and if you think about the inspiration, which are Warhol's illustrations of ladies' shoes, you can definitely smell a whiff of new leather in tissue paper. It's the type of perfume to wear with a nice coat and cool weather, and it was a perfect fit for wearing with my fake fur collared coat and shoulder-duster earrings.

From top to toe, it was an extremely successful costume, and it was the details, from the drawn-in brows to the beauty mark to the false lashes and the wink to the Andy Warhol perfume that really made it come together for me this Halloween.

images from and

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

HerCut Hair Care

I have something of a rule about specifically requesting products for review here on Periodic Beauty. You will notice that my presence here is limited compared to the number of posts we have on Periodic Style. Here's the thing--my name is Karen, and I am a product serial dater. I have never bought a replacement of any shampoos or conditioners, simply because I was ready to move on and see what else was out there. (Two exceptions: Boots moisturizing face wash and Nivea Soft lotion in the tub. I have to have them.) The only lasting commitment to a hair product I have right now is the Shiseido Tsubaki conditioning treatment. So, when choosing products for scrutiny, I am conflicted between being adventurous, getting stuff that I wouldn't normally buy, and being safe/familiar.

A lot of the PR pitches we get for this blog just make us roll our eyes, but the HerCut e-mail was intriguing. A new product based on caring for your precious haircut rather than your haphazard guessing as to your hair's current condition, texture, or color-treated status? What?

My usual shampoo/conditioner purchases are either scent-based (mandarin olive oil? yum!) or involve deep conditioning, because for a long while I thought my hair frizzies could be cured by a bout of lubing up every morning. Those did not work. I would try various Japanese shampoos while in Japan, thinking that because my grandmother is Japanese, I must be closer to the "coarse" texture of Asian hair. Apparently, according to my new hairstylist, I do not have coarse hair, I have normal-to-thin hair shafts but a high density of follicles per square inch of scalp area. Thus, my haircuts always involve a hefty amount of thinning out the bulky mass.

My most recent cut was, per my specific request, "something between a bob and a pixie, close at the neck but not too short because I don't want to have to shave the back of my neck--gross--with straight-across bangs above my eyebrows." It turned out well! I am still considering going pixie-short a la Jeanne (and much of my high school years) to encourage me to exercise more sans the desperate hunt for a hairband.

So, here enters my test of the HerCut products for the "bob" haircut. I requested the normal-dry shampoo, the medium moisturizing conditioner, and the bob catalyst from their spectrum of customized products.

The Shampoo: Yellowish in color, faint scent of honeydew melon--like when Starbucks used to put melon extract in their matcha latte. A dime-sized or half-teaspoon-ful pour turned into lovely lather. Easy to rinse out, hair felt clean in a jiffy and smooth as silk. I used it after swimming in my gym's heavily chlorinated pool and my hair was bouncy, shiny, and kept a quickly-styled shape for the rest of the night.

The Conditioner: Also smells of honeydew melon, maybe with a hint of citrus? Thin and more like a liquidy lotion than the thick, viscous shampoos I'm used to using. Also took about ten seconds to rinse out thoroughly, compared to the good minute+ I probably spend getting goopy conditioners completely out of my hair. After a little blow-drying and smoothing with my hands, I had little frizz. This morning, I used both the shampoo and conditioner again and towel-dried. There is no feeling of scum left in my hair or that greasiness you get from not-quite-up-to-it shampoos and conditioners.

The Catalyst: This post-towel-dry product, with the two sides of what appears to be a gel and a creme together, reminds me of those funny foundations that supposedly mix magically to approximate your skin tone. I have to blend it myself, in my hands? Seriously? It blends well, but I found it to leave my hair a little crunchy and stringy compared to curl-enhancing mousses or smoothing creams that fill my bathroom sink area. My hair held the bob shape without a lot of flyaways, but as I said before, I have a lot of hair and an aversion to using a lot of product to tame it--I want to avoid the stringy, greasy look a lot of curl products give you.

Having curly hair since puberty, it's been tough battling the inevitable frizz and triangle-head. When the Japanese chemical straightening didn't last beyond three months, I gave up on trying to straighten my curly hair. It has been a battle of wills for over ten years trying to tame the curl--straightening shampoos, curl-preserving shampoos, big-volume conditioner. When I stepped out of the shower and started to towel-dry, I noticed my hair felt pleasantly light and thin, like it does when I leave a salon with a great haircut. My scalp feels refreshed, my hair feels clean, light, without sacrificing any of my admittedly nice wavy/curl volume this morning.

Now, for just a bit of styling, a lick of makeup, and I have to run off to work! Let us know if you try it out with all of your fabulous haircuts, dear readers, and share! HerCut launches this month, three months after the initial launch date of June 1, and already has reviews from BellaSugar and Beauty Junkies Unite. Unfortunately, their website has yet to implement an online shopping option, but keep your eyes peeled!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Mascara to the Max!

This is a compensated review from BlogHer and Max Factor.

Recently I was given the opportunity from BlogHer to try out the new Max Factor2000 Calorie Extreme Lash Plumper mascara and Vivid Impact Lip Color lipstick. Since mascara and lip products are my absolute weakness, I said yes, of course!

First, let's chat mascara. I already have long dark lashes, which is great, but mascara always adds an extra oomph when I'm going out, especially since I wear glasses. The 2000 Calorie Extreme Lash Plumper mascara definitely made my lashes look longer, thicker, and darker, plus added some lift and curl.

But you don't have to take my word for it: I took pictures!

One of my eyes has Lash Plumper mascara on, the other doesn't. Can you guess which is which? (Seriously, this is so easy.)

This is just straight-up mascara on one eye alone, folks -- I didn't bust out the eyelash curler or anything (not even, um, concealer). The other eye is completely bare -- no mascara, no curling, nothing. Just naked eyelashes.

Want to see it again?

Check the bottom lashes -- that's the real story. Boom! Look at those plumped-up lashes on the left!

Do I like the formula? Yes, I do -- it's very long-lasting, even through working out or a long day at the office. Do I like the way it shows on my lashes? Definitely (just take another look at those pictures!). Do I like that the bottom of the bottle is flat so I can stand it up on my bathroom counter? I do (very handy!)!

My only major issue is that the brush is so huge! It's about the size of the tip of my pinky finger (which, granted, is small). I know that the brush is what gives it a lot of the great eye-popping oomph, but I am chronically clumsy and have been known to stick a mascara brush in my eye on more than one occasion. So I have to be very careful to not have a sudden hand twitch and get a giant rubber brush right in the eye. It's just something I have to watch for in particular, and it wouldn't stop me from buying it.

Now, let's talk lipstick! While the color I got to try out, "Pin-Up Pink", is great for the hot spring trend of bubblegum lips (think Drew Barrymore at the Grey Gardens premiere), it's unfortunately not the trend for me. That said, the lipstick itself is great quality stuff. It's super-moisturizing, lasts really well even when drinking from a cup, and you know what else caught my attention? It's unscented. I think this is really interesting and a nice classy touch -- sometimes I don't want to have my lips taste or smell like cupcakes or chocolate-mint or strawberry. It just makes it feel more grown-up and sophisticated to not get a huge whiff of fragrance when I open up a lipstick.

I also think it would work really well if applied lightly like a lipstain -- the dark "Hipster" would be awesome for fall, and you can always take a red lip like "Miss Right" or "Miss Right Now" and apply it very lightly with a lip brush or your fingers to soften the color up for daytime.

I am definitely curious to check out "Miss Right Now", which looks like a great blue-red (seriously, I am so weak for a blue-red, it's not even funny). I really do like the formula a lot, so I would easily go out and pick up another color of Vivid Impact.

Thank you to BlogHer and Max Factor for the chance to try out these products and indulge my weakness for mascara and lipstick -- seriously, does a girl need anything more?

Turns out: she does! And so with BlogHer and Max Factor, I'm giving away a gift pack!

Want to win it? Just leave a comment with your top beauty essential (as I said, mine are mascara and lipstick!) to this post!

Just a few rules:

• The contest is open from 10 am Pacific 5/15/09 until 4 pm Pacific 6/16/09.
• No duplicate comments.
• You may receive an additional entry by linking on Twitter and leaving a link to your Tweet in the comments.
• You may receive an additional entry by blogging about this contest and leaving a link to your blog post in the comments.
• This giveaway is open to US residents aged 18 and over.
• Winners will be selected via random draw, and will notified by e-mail (so make sure your email address is correct/attached to your profile!).
• The winner must respond to the email within 48 hours; otherwise, a new winner will be selected.
• Please see the official rules here: Official Rules

There are also sixteen more chances to win! Six other bloggers are giving away prize packs, and is giving away ten! Click, read, enter, win!

Good luck!!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Product Chatter: 4/24/09

Karen: Omg dude, this Jez thread on favorite discontinued brands/stuff is a-ma-zing.
I also want to take a little trip down to the beauty supply and see if I can't find the Touche Eclat equivalent product someone was singing the praises of the other day
Jeanne: It was Sally Hansen, no?
Yay, I have a Sephora box to pick up today!
That has my Dior SkinFlash and the Philosophy shower gel in it.
And my Happy Birthday present.
Karen: Yes.
Jeanne: Hell yeah Sephora Beauty Insider.
Karen: Courtney recommends Laura Mercier tinted foundation, btw.
Jeanne: Yeah, I like the Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer.
The Estee Lauder stuff is pretty good too.
I think I'm going to try out the Shiseido tinted moisturizer with SPF next, though, once I run out of what I have.
SPF 20 and non-comedogenic, hollah
And their primer has SPF 15, too.
Karen: Nice!
Karen: I think you know, I've been blending my Neutrogena SPF30 tinted moisurizer with about a tsp of regular ol' lotion, it works SO WELL.
Because the Neutrogena stuff doesn't blend/absorb/cover very well. My complexion looks awesome today, I switched lotions from a little sample-size bottle of Neutrogena sesame lotion to a thing of Bath & Body Works lotus petal/whatever lotion I found.
Jeanne: Just straight up body lotion, or a face lotion?
Karen: And I think I'll continue to do the lotion-blend once I'm all out of the Neutrogena, since the Estee Lauder sample you gave me is just a smidge too dark/yellow, but gives good coverage when blended.
Just straight up lotion.
Jeanne: So stuff you would put on your legs?
Karen: With the same amount of tinted moisturizer as you would normally try to slather on le face.
I think it's more like hand lotion, it's just something I found around the house.
Obviously I tested it on my face first to make sure it wouldn't be like AUGH STINGING BURNING IN THE EYES HORRORRRRR
Jeanne: Yeah, for sure.
I would probably still use a face-y lotion, but that's me.
Karen: I am always skeptical about face VS body lotions, I think it's just a marketing difference.
Jeanne: If just because some body lotions could be like "pores? pores! let's get in 'em."
Karen: Yeah.
True, I think that's what the problem with the Neutrogena sesame stuff was.
Jeanne: Or fragrance-y body lotions, I would not want on my face.
Karen: It just felt...oily.
That rose cold cream from Bigelow Chemists is okay.
Jeanne: I swear to god the NARS/Origins combo has saved my face.
Karen: I think I just don't really know how to use it properly? I put it on before washing my face and let it sit like a mask, then wash per usual. That combination alone DRIES MY FACE OUT LIKE HELL.
Jeanne: I don't know which of the two is doing it, but yeah.
Don't you usually use cold cream as a night cream?
So after you wash?
Karen: It's so OILY, though.
I'm an idiot though, I've only ever seen cold cream used in movies, so I imagine that I am sitting in my dressing room with a mirror surrounded in lightbulbs, putting cold cream on my face.
Jeanne: OH
Did you see the BeautyHacks post on Marilyn Monroe's beauty products?
And the specific routine you have to do?
Karen: whoooaaa
Jeanne: I know, it looks amazing, right?
Karen: The prices are OUTRAGEOUS, but I want to try it~
Jeannee: <-- going to fill out the survey!
Karen: !
<-- signing up for the newsletter in case there's a fire sale
Jeanne: Is my skin concern acne and breakouts, or dullness and discoloration?
Karen: Acne and breakouts, or so it seems to me.
Jeanne: because really, it's clogged pores, which is different than acne.
Karen: I am Slightly Dry!
Jeanne: I don't want to fill my sink with hot water.
It's a slow drain.
So unless I wash my face in the bathtub, yeah.
Karen: Yeah.
If it's as amazing and life-changing as it sounds, I would only use it in the morning--regular ol' face wash and toner at night is good enough for me.
Jeanne: Well, nighttime is really when you need to be good to your face because you're getting all of the crud of the day off.
Morning, you don't really need to wash it as heavily.
Karen: But I want it to look Marilyn-good for work.
If I'm going to go through all those steps with special, expensive products, I want somebody to SEE IT
Jeanne: True.
Basically, I think I'm going to get the Origins night cream eventually/soon, as soon as I use up my sample, which should last me another couple of weeks.
Karen: Man, if it's worth the investment, go for it.
Karen: ooo.
Jeanne: It's amazing.
Although like I said, I honestly don't know if it's the NARS or the Origins, but whatever it is, the combo's working.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

My 25 Beauty Confessions!

Jeanne has pressed upon me that I should fill out this Sephora top-25 list, as anti-beauty as I am...being a young, working woman, I really can't avoid the beauty industry! The other day, my boss took a long look at me and said, "You look different today. Are you okay?" It took me a moment, but I realized that due to a rushed morning I hadn't had time to put on mascara. Voila, a noticeable difference!

1. What is the 1 product you'd grab if your house was on fire?
Facial wash! (I'm using Boots' Botanicals moisturizing face wash and I like it. Did you know actress Keeley Hawes is the face of Boots No. 7 in the UK? LOVE HER.)

2. Which friend would you let make you over?
Jeanne! Homegirl knows my likes and dislikes, and she is always super-stylish. Or, fictional friend, Joan Holloway of Mad Men--she would probably tell me to hike up my ta-tas and wear tighter sweaters.

3. What celeb do people think you look like?
I want to say Winona Ryder, but really? I would absolutely DIE OF SUPERFICIAL JOY if I grew my hair long to look like Anna Friel.

4. What beauty product do you save for date night?
Benefit BadGal lash mascara. It's a bit va-va-voom for the everyday work face, particularly because I tend to smear mascara on my glasses lenses and BadGal is close to impossible to get off.

5. Which of your guy friends takes longer than you, to get ready?
Like Jeanne, anyone who takes more than 20-30 minutes. I take ten minutes to shower, towel-dry my hair, style it, throw on some clothes, and bing bang boom! We have our routines down pat.

6. If you could create your own miracle beauty product, what would it be?
A fine, non-flyaway powder that provides SPF and good, even coverage to smooth out my red areas and make my face look less freckly. A friend once told me there is laser surgery to remove freckles in South Korea, in order to achieve "porcelain face." Just give me a powder and a big ol' brush, please!

7. How many different Sephora stores have you been to (and in which cities)?
Stanford Shopping Center, San Francisco (Powell)--with Jeanne, San Francisco International Airport departures terminal, and probably New York City...somewhere? Yikes.

8. What's your best beauty tip?
Definitely sunscreen, and don't skimp on the SPF number--stick to 30 or more, most formulations I've used around 30 still protect your skin and don't feel like zinc oxide library paste.

9. What beauty products do you love to splurge on?
Hair conditioners and/or deep conditioning hair masks, because I have a misguided notion that conditioning my hair will make it straighter and less frizzy. I bought a tub of amazing honey deep conditioning goop in Japan that lasted me a good year and a half, so it's pretty much always a good investment.

10. Which of your girlfriends would you bring on a Sephora shopping spree?
Kati, Jeanne, Miss C., and probably my mom. She buys crazy, impulse things at Sephora that I then get to use because they don't work on her. Win!

11. What is your signature scent?
A mixture of my Chai-scented deodorant and Satu Vanille from Anthropologie, which I picked up on sale and on a whim. I think the scents blend well with one another. Otherwise, I am still looking for the perfect citrus perfume for summer, but I don't want it to clash with my deodorant--very important.

12. I am on an endless quest for the perfect _________.
Oops! See #11. Citrus/lemon/orange-scents. And tinted moisturizer that doesn't feel like I'm smearing dried-up paint on my face.

13. How old were you when you were allowed to wear makeup AND how old were you when you actually started wearing makeup?
Oh boy, was I a late bloomer. I made a brief foray into trying to buy makeup at the local CVS in my college town, but never made much an effort beyond face wash and lotion until senior year of college. I had a NARS makeover at our local Sephora while home on break and the makeup artist was so refreshingly frank and really listened to my needs, it turned me right around. I started experimenting and finding what worked well on my when I lived on my own two years ago. Living in Japan for a while was a makeup disaster, I was sweaty and oily all day long, although makeup shopping in Tokyo is endlessly entertaining. Whitening lotion!! Ladies, really.

14. How many beauty products does it take to get you ready?
Let's see. 1: Face wash, 2: lotion, 3: Neutrogena tinted moisturizer blended with previously mentioned lotion, 4: eyeliner in bronze, brown, or black, 5: mascara, 6: pressed powder. Occasionally, I'll use blush. In the car, I put on lipgloss and/or lipstick and that's it. I sure don't look camera-ready by any means!!

15. What lipstick/lip gloss is in your purse right now?
Blistex Deep Renewal with SPF15 and CoQ10 formula (it smells like marshmallows!), Maybelline shiny-licious gloss 87 in pink sorbet, Kiss My Face lip balm in vanilla honey, and Sonia Kashuk lipstick in sheer calypso, from Target.

16. Who is your celebrity beauty icon?
Obviously, love Keeley Hawes and Anna Friel, they are badass ladies. I love Thora Birch's look as Enid in Ghost World, that movie is basically my life, after all.

17. Where is the craziest place you've ever applied your makeup?
The bathroom on the 30th floor of the United Nations Headquarters? It didn't seem particularly momentous or crazy at the time, mostly just lazy and sloppy.

18. Who of your tagged friends is ALWAYS camera ready?
Does my mother count? The lady certainly didn't pass on the photogeneity genes to me!

19. Name the beauty brand you'd most love to be a spokesperson for?
Anna Sui, that packaging is so elegant and Gothic I want to EAT IT.

20. If you could name your signature nail polish, what would you call it?
Purple Primal Scream.

21. Out of your tagged friends, who's the most Sephora-obsessed?
Uh doyyy, as Liz Lemon would say, Jeanne.

22. Fave mascara right now?
I wear Maybelline Colossal Volume Express every day for work, it's...fine. Neither colossal nor really volume-adding, but as long as it makes me look more awake than I actually am, I'm not complaining!

23. The last thing you bought at Sephora?
I probably got a bunch of sample-size things. This reminds me, I need to go pick up an eyeliner pencil sharpener and a new brush...and maybe add to my not-quite-right pressed powder collection.

24. I try never to be seen without wearing _______.
Sunglasses. And lip balm.

25. One beauty product you recommend to ALL of your girlfriends?
DHC foaming cream facial cleanser! So, so great.

Copy and paste this to pass it on with your own answers, we love seeing everyone's personal takes on beauty and makeup!

Sephora's 25 Beauty Confessions!

If you didn't get caught up in the "25 Things You Might Not Know" thing that went around Facebook, then you... probably don't spend a lot of time on Facebook.

Anyway, Sephora posted up a list of 25 beauty questions/confessions, and so I'm answering them here...

1. What is the 1 product you'd grab if your house was on fire?

2. Which friend would you let make you over?
I would have to say J, the younger sister of my good friend, S.

3. What celeb do people think you look like?
I've been told Leelee Sobieski, Helena Bonham Carter, and Ingrid Bergman.

4. What beauty product do you save for date night?
I don't think I have any special products just for date night -- I definitely put in more effort when I go out for any reason, not just dates. But I would say foundation/tinted moisturizer, since I don't wear it to work unless I'm planning on going out (or getting my picture taken).

5. Which of your guy friends takes longer than you, to get ready?
Anyone who takes longer than half an hour -- and that includes shower time.

6. If you could create your own miracle beauty product, what would it be?
A tinted moisturizer with good but not too heavy coverage that heals zits as it covers them, doesn't clog pores (in fact, it would be awesome if it could unclog pores, since it's a miracle product) or get oily, and has SPF but doesn't smell like sunscreen.

7. How many different Sephora stores have you been to (and in which cities)?
Stanford, San Francisco (Powell), Seattle, Times Square, Champs Elysees, and Rue de Rivoli (I think -- I went to another, non-Champs Elysees, Sephora in Paris as well). I'm sure I've been to others, but those are the ones I can think of off of the top of my head.

8. What's your best beauty tip?

9. What beauty products do you love to splurge on?
I would say skincare masks and treatments. (Although I don't really *love* to splurge on them.)

10. Which of your girlfriends would you bring on a Sephora shopping spree?
Kati and Karen, naturally.

11. What is your signature scent?
I don't have one! I wrote about this for BeautyHacks back in October and I still don't have one. I would say the closest I have is L'Artisan Parfumeur's Mure et Musc Extreme, but even then I want something else for spring. I'm thinking Yuzu Rouge...? Or I could go back to Fresh Sugar, maybe.

12. I am on an endless quest for the perfect _________.
Tinted moisturizer with SPF -- see #6.

13. How old were you when you were allowed to wear makeup AND how old were you when you actually started wearing makeup?
I never really wore make-up to school or class (and I still don't wear much to work); my mom brought me in to the Dior counter when I was maybe fifteen or sixteen, then MAC when I was seventeen or eighteen (before I went off to college).

14. How many beauty products does it take to get you ready?
Ready for work or ready for a night out? For work, it now takes six (sometimes seven or eight), not including toothpaste. (That's face wash, moisturizing lotion, eye cream, sunscreen, Dior SkinFlash concealer/brightener, Benetint, sometimes powder, sometimes bronzer).

15. What lipstick/lip gloss is in your purse right now?
I have three lip balms (Dr. Pepper LipSmackers, Yes to Carrots balm in Carrot, Chocolate Mint Ganache) and Lipstick Queen lipstick in Saint Natural.

16. Who is your celebrity beauty icon?
Jean Seberg and Blair Waldorf.

17. Where is the craziest place you've ever applied your makeup?
I tend to apply it on the commuter train a lot, which is fun when you're doing mascara or eyeliner.

18. Who of your tagged friends is ALWAYS camera ready?
I'm not tagging anyone, and I almost never have my camera with me, so I'm not really sure! But my ladies always look great.

19. Name the beauty brand you'd most love to be a spokesperson for?
Fresh, since Alina Roytberg is awesome.

20. If you could name your signature nail polish, what would you call it?
It wouldn't be "Jeanne in a Bottle", that's for dang sure. Maybe "Jeanne Bikini".

21. Out of your tagged friends, who's the most Sephora-obsessed?
Again, not tagging anyone, but it would probably be me.

22. Fave mascara right now?
Blinc Kiss Me, since it makes my lashes SO LONG and doesn't smear at all.

23. The last thing you bought at Sephora?
Erm, officially I bought something online today... and that's the new Philosophy Unconditional Love 3-in-1 (I knoooow) and a replacement Dior SkinFlash concealer/highlighter pen, because I'm paranoid about my current one running out and I NEED IT.

24. I try never to be seen without wearing _______.
Clothes. Oh, wait. Cheek stain.

25. One beauty product you recommend to ALL of your girlfriends?
Urban Decay Primer Potion, hands down.

Go ahead and grab this and post it yourself in your own blog or in the comments -- I'd love to see everyone else's answers!