Free Tack Pass – The Red You Need. Sephora Creme Lip Stain (01) Review

Here we go brown beauties, the Sephora Creme Lip Stain 01. Thank me later ;) Image Source and Order Here!

Here we go brown beauties, the Sephora Creme Lip Stain 01. Thank me later 😉

Hello Ladies,

There comes a day, in every girl’s life,  when she needs to outshine that bitchy rich girl she knew back in school at a partay or a wedding or maybe a brunch.

I dislike day-time beauty competitions because its’ almost impossible to to feign natural beauty (everyone can see you’ve contoured -_-) But in this context, looking tacky/obviously dolled up is permissible because everyone is doing it  and you’ll look anemic if you go too far in your pursuit of the cosmetic yet ‘natuwally beautiful’ face.

So you saunter to your room and take out all  your ammo. You slap it on (very judiciously because you visit WBVANITY enough to know better 😉 but there is something missing. You look classy – but your face still looks awfully similar to the way it does the other 365 days in a year. You’re missing the glamour. And that just won’t do because you need to look like a completely different person.

So whats that one thing, that is going to give you the straight-off-the-catwalk-but-so-effortlessly-stunning look? Good ol’ red on the lips.

First of all, remember not to shy away from using it, especially if its’ a daytime event. Take it out of the freezer (where you have been preserving it) and put it on your dressing table so that you remember you have the option of wearing it every time you go out.

Our beautiful brown complexions get the extra zing from bright lipsticks, especially red and maroon. Although this post focuses on making you look extra-ceptional for a semi-formal/smart casual event, do remember that that if you have the right shade of red lipstick, you can wear it to work, to shop, basically anywhere without looking OTT. You will definitely turn a lot of heads in the process so steer clear if you are still getting used to people staring all the time.

Like my hunt for the right foundation for our skin-tones, the quest for the perfect red lipstick spanned over 6 years and three continents. Luckily for you, my find this time is a budget one. Although I never recommend economizing on makeup, in this case I strongly suggest you go for it even if you are a little ambivalent towards mid-range brands.

*drum roll*

SEPHORA Creme Lip Stain 01 Always Red!!!!

It looks great across the pale-brown to dark brown color spectrum of desi skin and will DEFINITELY set you apart, even from your annoying,Tom-Ford-lipcolor- owning competitor This is the one lip color you can buy without trying on. Its’ look will vary on each girl (depending on her shade of brown you have 🙂 but is guaranteed to look classy. For 13 dollars, you’re practically getting paid to look good.

Application for Dummies

Be careful during application (one layer is fine for the day-time, for evening  outings wear two). Top it off with a dab of vaseline after it settles before heading out to offset the slightly sticky,matte texture. Remember this step especially if you are prone to dry lips.

Remember to put foundation on your lips before applying it for super zing.

In the heat, unfortunately, like all other lipsticks this may  bleed out a little, so keep an eye on your lips with discreet peeks into your compact throughout the outing 😉 Using foundation as a base and a lip pencil can help contain it to a certain extent but lay off the pencil again if its’ a day time outing (looks too dolled up).

If you want to wear it out for casual outings/ at work, top it off with a dash of nude lipstick (and lay off the foundation on the lips pre-application) – it’ll tone down the oomph factor but still look alluring.

I’m sorry that this isn’t available in Pakistan yet, but pick one up on your next vacation or  ask a friend or family member to get it for you.

Enjoy the Tack Ladies!

And remember to make-up well even when your bitchy competitors aren’t around 😉




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Shady Brands be Fine Cause They Got the Shine? Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick Review

Hello Desi Ladies,

I’ve noticed a lot of you carrying around fake or substandard versions of high turnover cosmetics in your makeup bags – no, the Naked2 Palette you picked up for a total of 10 dollars is not the original. Some of you even request family and friends visiting the beautiful south asian sub-continent to bring over your budget trash stash.

Shady brands be fine cause they got the shine? I think not! Cheap makeup melts a lot faster in our south asian oven heat. Makeup from brands like Chanel melts too, but it melts classy. When your face sweats up, it melts downwards in an orderly fashion.

OK, I just made that up =P Please dont be pennywise (i hate you clown!) and pound foolish. By the time you enter your 30s (or maybe sooner), the damage these fake products will do to your  ‘natuwal beauty’ will require a lot of investment to reverse. So unless you have a good loan plan in mind please reconsider the next time you draw up your makeup inventory.

Anyways fret not – you don’t necessarily need endless flows of cash to look good (especially when you have to pay a premium for most products purchased at home  -_- ). Just invest in the the right one(s) and use them ‘multi-purposely’. I strongly suggest you get your hands on bobbi brown’s shimmer brick (mentioned in an earlier post) in bronze or rose for a polished non-tacky look.

Although its supposed to be applied over blusher, I use it on its’ own as blusher for a sunkissed or peachy look. The hint of color on your cheeks looks understated but very classy. Its’ especially suitable for daytime outings  in our never ending summer.

I also use it for contouring. I apply a dash with a brush or very frugally with my pinkie on the nose, forehead, under the eyes, cheekbones, jaw line and blend it. I prefer Bronze for contouring, but Nectar works too. Try using only the top two shades for contouring though.

For the ultimate sculpted look (great evening wear) mix up both – use Nectar as blush, and Bronze  for contouring.

Bronze makes a great gold eye shadow btw. It is very shimmery, so you have to save it for parties or desi weddings. Also, remember that if you’re using Bronze as an eye-shadow, go for a warm pink glossy lipstick and hold back on the blush.

If you want to use Nectar as eyeshadow, focus on the top two (lightest) shades. I’m not a fan of pink toned eye shadows so I’d recommend you use it to add shimmer over matte eyeshadows in the brown family.

Finally, you can use both Nectar or Bronze (top two shades) as a highlighter (under your eyebrows) day or night 🙂

Oh and a quick tip for you blush lovers (and non lovers too – please refer to my earlier post Blush Me Pretty if you still do not grasp the importance of this tool :).  If you ever run out of your favorite blush and wont be able to get your hands on the replacement for a while, use pink lipstick ( I recommend Mac’s Satin) as a substitute – dot two splotches of the lipstick on your cheek and blend, blend, blend.

Hope this helped beautiful ladies!

Have an awesome (remaining) weekend and make-up well 🙂



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Clown Face No Mo – THE Foundation for South Asian Skin is Discovered! Clinique Even Better Makeup SPF 15 Review


Hello vain desi ladies,

If your foundation doesn’t match your actual skin-tone, it doesn’t matter how much you’ve paid for it, you will look tacky. Pennywise (scroll through gallery please, he still scares me the way he did when I was 3) is not in fashion anymore. I am pointing at those of you who ONLY wear foundation that is lighter than your skin tone ( clown alert!!). I’m also pointing my finger at those of you who wear it a couple of shades darker for the tanned effect – its’ not as bad as the former, but you’re still undermining the impact of your final look.

First of all, your skin tone is beautiful the way it is (no matter what anyone says) so please stop  going around looking for a lighter shade of foundation to look ‘prettier’ – white is not prettier. And even if you manage to whiten up your face, your actual skin tone will be betrayed by your arm and neck skin (yes people look there and can see the contrast). No, rubbing foundation all over your neck, arms and pits does not work. In those areas, foundation just wont do – you’ll need a primer, foundation and face-powder and apply crap-loads of it. And people will still be able to tell you’ve caked up your pits. Why am I even giving any ideas? Just don’t do it, it doesn’t work.  The aim is to look effortlessly fantastic and not a circus attraction.

Now that we’ve got that clear – here comes the verdict and some tips to follow when purchasing foundation for your skin

I’ve tried everything from L’Oreal to Guerlain – if you pick up a foundation while you are traveling  do keep in mind that the girls at the makeup counter (duty frees/ malls/ everywhere) will almost ALWAYS hand you a foundation that is DARKER than your skin tone s0 try not to buy it in a rush (happened to me at least 4 times and I ended up wasting quite a bit of money). We have tricky skin-tones and a lot of us have variations that they may not be able to account for in their recommendations. In South Asia (I speak on behalf of Pakistan only btw) you’ll definitely get a couple of shades ‘whiter’ from the makeup sales girls.

In an international setting,  take the makeup counter girls’ recommendation and walk around, preferably in natural light or in different parts of store with her choices applied on different parts of your face. If you have time to make a decision plaster the two shades you think could work best on your face (draw an imaginary line through your nose) and spend the day sightseeing/shopping (no you don’t need to look like a mime character doing it, just tell her to do your whole face while she’s at it) before buying. This helped me not waste money on a Chanel foundation that didn’t suit my skin type or tone.

At home (Pakistan), I’d advise not relying on the makeup counter girls at all  due to the continuation of the colonial mentality that white is best. They will emotionally blackmail/gang up on you into making a purchase by insisting you are Snow-white (or pennywise) reincarnated and everyone has been lying to you about it all along because they’re jealous.

Just stay strong (even though this is what you’ve wanted to hear all your life) and say no. Ask for shades that match the tone of your hand or inside of your wrist and then trust your judgement. Alternatively, you can take a picture of what they put on you and leave it in the comment box below. No, its’ not for me to  laugh at =P

Anyways blah blah, the best foundation, decided after 10 years of  international and local experimentation as well as an insane amount of  wasted money ( I tell myself it was for a good cause -_- ), is the Clinique Even Better Makeup SPF 15. The look, the effect is natural (make sure the tone you pick is right for you otherwise your clown face effect will not be on my conscience).

Most magical of all – it is the only foundation that – ON ITS’ OWN – will cover up your uneven skin tone and acne leftovers (welcome to south-asian skin problems 101). No primer, no concealer, no face powder required. You can’t use this if your skin is oily though – it has a dewy effect on normal/combination skin so  you will look very sweaty, especially in the summer.

Go here now to order –

I use honey (MF-G) and i can swear by it – at 27 USD its reasonable. People think my skin is majestic due to this product- I feel a little guilty when I pretend to be au naturale when using this 😉

Btw, if you buy this in Pakistan, you’ll probably end up paying over 50 USD – import taxes blah blah. Either way, its a great investment and even if you use it everyday ( a couple of times in a day like I do), it’ll last you around a year so don’t feel guilty. Just make sure it is not expired or damaged by exposure to our awesome  summer – to check consistency, whine away persistently and the drug-store/mall staff will let you ‘apply a bit’ of the ‘sealed’ product. Even if they say no the first three times you ask, try the fourth time and they’ll get embarrassed enough to let you do it 😉 If oil comes out when you press the bottle, do not buy it – it is old (no matter what they say) and will give you a breakout/some major skin disease. Ask a friend/family member who is traveling to pick up one for you if you have the option (you wont have to worry about it being expired and it’ll probably be cheaper too)

Application for Dummies

Slap on a thin layer for daytime – put it over your eyes too (not sure if its’ supposed to be used that way) but it works great for me. If you’re going for the ‘oh i just got out of bed and this is how stunning i natuwally look’ effect, put on a hint of blusher (next post, coming soon i promise).

For work top that off with natural brown or pink lipstick (go for whatever matches the natural tone of your lips) and a very thin application of eye-liner on your upper lids (no cat-eyes ladies, you aren’t working in bollywood so take it easy and save yourself the sleazy comments the peons will pass each time they pass you by). If you have small eyes, steer clear of the eye-liner – apply an eye-lid tinter and mascara. Focus on your lipstick and get a slightly brighter shade. Again, red is not recommended in Pakistan for work unless the office peons are scared of you or  if your immune to the creepy comments and stares. Then you can do and wear what you want. And I strongly suggest you do so to create a more tolerant work environment for the rest of us =)

For exceptional full coverage (evening wear) put on two to three thin layers ( I slap it on with my hands generously, i have innate sense of when I need to stop though so be careful when doing this). If you want to go “all-out dollface” top it off with some face-powder (keep an eye out for my upcoming post on the tarty yet classy look 😉

So good bye until next time pretties! If you have any recommendations on what you’d like to hear about from me, do leave a comment 🙂

Make up well meanwhile!




Blush Me Pretty

Hello Desi Girls,

Didn’t get enough sleep again? Too many deadlines at work? Life falling apart in general?

Do NOT leave the house without blush. Your life difficulties give you absolutely no excuse to go makeup free, you know how sadistic our society is –  do you want to be known as the ‘pity girl’?

Ok ,even if you don’t care about judged at this point, you are not allowed, under any circumstances, to go in to work/socialize without blush. Unless you’re intending on pulling off a fake sicky at work in the next days to pamper yourself at the spa. Or catch up on some sleep. In that case lay off the blush and foundation and apply dark grey eyeshadow on your lower lids (in mild quantities) to enhance the pity factor and get the suspicious colleagues / boss off your case 😉

Anyways here is the recommendation of the day – Bobbi Brown Shimmer Blush. I use Nectar religiously. It is great across desi skin-tones (pale to wheatish). The shimmer is minimal so it gives a very nice, natural glow even if you apply only one layer with your brush (great for work and day-wear).

For an evening outing apply two layers and top it off a stroke of Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick (bronze if your skin tone veers to the darker end and nectar if your tone is more on the pale, lighter brown side). Visit me again to hear more about these two magical products later this week.

Have a pretty day and remember, makeup is your best friend 🙂



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