I’m moving!

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Hey lovelies!

This is a very short post to let you guys know that after months of work and praying for things to happen, I am moving my blog! In fact the blog got an extreme makeover, name, face, everything and let me tell you guys… she is looking mighty fine.

You can link to the new blog here…it’s called Lipstick and Afros and will launch in a few days.

This new and improved blog definitely represents a change in my blogging journey. I started this blog in 2013 simply because I like sharing beauty tips and it wasn’t really a thing…now it’s like a whole little beauty planet where I get to interact with beauty lovers from around the world which I absolutely love.

So cheers to more blog posts, beauty tips and more interacting!

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Where To Buy Makeup #WindhoekEdition

Hi Everyone! Hope you are all well and are just going through life kicking butt and taking names!

So one of the most asked questions I get both on my blog and on my social media (and in person, lol) is where to get makeup, particularly  those coveted international brands that don’t stock anywhere south of the Equator, or those that don’t ship out here (Heeey Sephora!). This post is going to be slightly longer than usual but absolutely worth reading till the very last full stop.

Luckily for me, that has never deterred me… guys where there is a will there is a way.

Firstly, if you would like to purchase something online and the shop doesn’t ship to Africa, you can always use a forwarding company… I’ve signed up with Aramex Global Shopper. They basically ship from whatever online store to a number of African countries including South Africa which is close enough for me as I can always get a friend or someone to DHL me my stash.

Secondly, there are quite a lot of stores that now ship to Africa, these include Target, Macy’s, ASOS and as of yesterday Colourpop (Yay!). Urban Decay recently launched a stand a lone store in South Africa and for a limited time have an online pop-up shop where you can buy those coveted NAKED palettes. (best believe I bought mine already!)

Now before you start complaining about how expensive shipping is… here is my solution: I typically think its better to share the costs of shipping with a friend or two.

Finally, one of Windhoek’s best kept secrets when it comes to makeup is Kristine Luis! She is the fabulous owner of Hott Of The Heels, and I got the chance to speak to her. Read on to see all she had to say. She knows her stuff when it comes to makeup and all her information will be linked below!

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Tell us about yourself?

KL: Well this could be a bit long but I’ll try to stay on the topic at hand.  My full name is Kristine Lementsyan Luis.  I’m an Armenian-American, and I always tend to mention my background because coming from Los Angeles, a melting pot metropolis of so many beautiful cultures and ethnicities from around the world, we love to learn and talk about each other’s unique backgrounds.

As I said, I’m from the City of Angeles, otherwise known as L.A.  I moved to Namibia in 2012 after completing my University degree, to be along side my now-Husband, who is Namibian himself.

Needless to say, I was homesick after making such a big move and felt a longing to bring a little bit of home to my new home.  This is where “Hott Off The Heels” and “Bringing LA 2 Africa” was born.

On a more personal level about myself, I love to travel and I love to meet people from all around the world.  I was a cultural dancer for 20 years and moved into a love for fitness right after. I value family, good friends, good memories and a lovely community amongst women. Life is too short for drama and I live by these values.  I also passionately promote taking care of oneself on both the inside and outside.  This includes keeping healthy, and putting effort in looking and feeling beautiful.

 What is Hott off the Heels?

KL: Hott Off The Heels is a brand, more so, than just a company or shop.  It is fresh and hot off the heels of the LA Scene, hence the name.  And this doesn’t just refer to makeup, but other trends, products and styles that are popular in Los Angeles. But it just so happens that the beauty and makeup industry are at their all-time highest level of popularity right now.

So with the idea of Bringing LA 2 Africa, and out of my love for skincare, beauty products, and makeup artistry came my passion for bringing what is so abundantly available to the ladies in Los Angeles, to us make-up-loving ladies in Namibia.

What brands do you stock?

KL: Since I try to steer in the direction of where the beauty market is going and stay in line with the hottest products, the brands I stock are always changing.  As of now though, I carry a large variety of brands that are adored by so many bloggers. This list includes ELF, ColourPop, Urban Decay, Anastasia Beverly Hills, Dose of Colors, Too Faced, NARS, Makeup Forever, Morphe, Lorac, EOS, NYX, Lumee Case, Michael Kors, Victoria’s Secret, Mario Badescu,….ahhh the list goes on.  In addition, I accept orders of products I might not carry at the time.

What are your 3 top tips when buying new makeup?

 

KL: 1. Make sure you are being consulted by a knowledgeable person that can help you choose the best products for you and your budget.  Don’t get “sold” products you won’t actually use and fall in love with using everyday, it’s a waste of hard-earned ‘boss-babe’ money.

2. Start with a small collection beginning with the face and lips, and then continue to more detailing products like brows, eyes, lashes, setting, etc. Begin with a foundation you feel really good about, a contour powder (or bronzer), a highlighter for glow, and a lippie you’ll just adore taking selfies with.

3. DON’T get intimidated or afraid to try something different, something bold. “Makeup Shaming” is an actual thing and we should not fall prey to this type of bullying or old-fashioned ideas. Try a dark lip, try a winged liner, the message is try it all and have fun with your beauty. That’s the point. Remember: We don’t wear makeup because we ‘have’ to, we wear it because we ‘want’ to. Enjoy your femininity.

High end or Low end? What is your preference?

KL: I say a combination is always best. However, this one’s a difficult one to answer directly and it all depends on what product it is. Also depends on the client. If she’s a student, a working professional, night-social or day-social. And of course if it’s for an event or everyday.  Events, always go high-end.

In addition, I’ll ask if you want a functional makeup or recreational. For example, for the ladies over 30, I suggest some products that will be on the face to be high-end.  It will serve its purpose all day and do a great job complying with your skin. But then the lippie can be low-end as long as you love it.  And for the more student lifestyle or recreational makeup, there are a lot of great quality low-end brands that will be sure to satisfy and have fun with.  I personally love and use both high and low-end, just depends on the numerous details.

What I don’t recommend is always heading towards big named, high-end brands because sometimes you’ll find some extraordinary gems in the low-end brands that will surely surprise you, such as ColourPop and ELF.  Just the same though, don’t be afraid to budget a bit and go all in on a high-end product every now and then.

What items are your best sellers?

Some of the products that fly off my shelves as soon as they arrive are Dose of Colors matte lipsticks, ColourPop matte lipsticks, the Beauty Blender, highlighters, brushes and contour/highlight kits. But the top of this list is definitely Matte Lipsticks, any and all brands.  What’s not to love? They last all day, don’t smudge off and have deep pigmented color.  One of the best creations of the makeup industry.

Kristine is on Instagram as @Hott.Of.The.Heels, Facebook with the same name and click here for her website.

Estee Lauder Matte Perfecting Primer

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Hello lovely people!

I’ve been off the radar… I know, it killed me to be away but I was so busy with work (and y’all know that’s what pays the bills). The good thing is that I am back, I am working on a ton of new content and (drumroll please)… a new look for the blog, so be sure to check back regularly for all that.

Now moving on to the business of the day. I recently purchased the Estee Lauder Matte Perfecting Primer. I have seen and heard about it from various internet (lol) sources but I figured because the beauty counters in Windhoek are always so poorly stocked I’d never find it. Anyway I headed to Stuttafords the other day and asked the consultant if they stock it. I was so ready for her to say no, I wasn’t even listening to her response, I was shocked, to say the least when she said they do stock it and in fact only had one left in stock. I was sleeping on an amazing product you guys!!!

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Okay, let me tell you guys … this primer is really great. It comes in a tube, and the consistency is a creamy one, (not silicone) and a little does go a long way. The First time I applied it was with no makeup, just primer and it kept the oil at bay for hours. The next day I applied it followed by my Lancome Teinte Idol Ultra Foundation and even then, it held up pretty well. I think I have blotted once during the day an even then it was only my nose which wasn’t even really all that oily.

If you haven’t already picked this baby up for yourself guys… don’t waste anymore time. And just fyi, if you are in Windhoek,  Stuttafords is having a 25% off sale on all its cosmetics.

 

Making the most of your face mask

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Hi Lovelies

It’s been a minute. I know some of you were expecting a review on the L.A. Girl Nudes Eye shadow palette but… at the last minute I decided to do this post instead because I’ve kinda been feeling bleh about constantly doing product reviews because I reckon there’s more to beauty blogging than just that.

I posted a while ago about face masks and I thought I’d do another post, more focused on how to really get the most out of your face mask. This is obviously all based on my own experience and I am not a professional or anything so if you disagree with anything I say or do, that is absolutely fine. This is me sharing how I get the most from using my masks.

First of , I am of the opinion that masks are for like next level cleansing or moisturising or whatever, so I always start with a clean face, no makeup or like the everyday kinda dirt. To do this, I cleanse my face using my facial cleanser and my face wash. As you might know, I use the Sorbet Pore Your Heart Out Facial Cleanser and an ever changing number of Ponds’  face washes.

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After that I apply the face mask using my Sorbet Cleanser and their latex sponge (which I only recently discovered). The thing about using the sponge is that you can literally squeeze some product onto it and apply it on your face without making a huge mess. Also because of the mechanical head, there’s a more even distribution of the product over your face.

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Finally I settle in with a good book and let the mask do its thing for about 15-20 min and I rinse off.

Body Oil Goodness {Lipidol Body Oils Review}

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Hey Lovelies!

If you follow me on my Social Media then you’ll know that last month I was super excited to purchase Lipidol Body Oils and in Clicks right here in Windhoek too!! I personally am a big fan of body oils and body butters, in fact I prefer to use these on my skin (lotions and creams are a no for me). In fact I use my DIY Shea Butter Body Cream all year round, you can read how I make it here . I love Vitamin E Oils, and I think to date my favourite oil is the Johnson and Johnson Tissue Oil.

So… back to Lipidol. These oils are made by the same company that makes Bio-Oil. I hadn’t watched any reviews or anything before buying them, I just like oils and am always looking to get new ones. I bought the Lipidol Cleansing Oil as well as the Lipidol After Shower Oil. The packaging is typical of any body oil- plastic, transparent cylindrical bottles. The Cleansing oil has this heavenly lime smell which I cannot get enough of, whilst the After shower oil has no fragrance which I think is a good thing.

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The Cleansing Oil does a decent job of cleaning the body, my only thing is that it struggles to lather up when you use it with body gloves like I do. You’ve gotta first lather it up  with your bare hands first then proceed to actually wash yourself with your gloves/sponge/whatever you use. The After shower oil is great, nothing wrong with it but if you live in a place as dry as Windhoek then you know you got to mix it with something like Vaseline because your skin will start to feel dry and of course that’s not the product but the weather. Of course on the more humid days that isn’t a problem but with winter coming up it will definitely be required.

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I am actually thinking of mixing up my oil with some Shea butter when I mix up my next batch of body butter…I’ll be sure to let you guys know how that goes.

I would probably buy these products again, but I still prefer my Johnson and Johnson Tissue Oil and my Shea Butter mix. These are decent products and for the price I guess it’s not so bad, but I wouldn’t brave a long queue in Clicks for them again.

My Skincare Routine: Oily Skin

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If you’ve been following my blog for a while then you will know I suffer from oily skin and let me tell you guys, the struggle is so real!!! If you’re a makeup junky like me then you know oil and makeup are just not friends. I have countless stories of looking like a grease pot by 10am, makeup literally sliding off my face and so much more. The oil struggle is not easy, and you know when you have nose like mine, you want it to be anything but SHINY!

My current skin routine which I have tweaked and worked on for many years is finally dealing with my oil problem and I’m excited to share it with you guys.

First of, Facial Cleanser and Moisturiser:

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Ponds. Period. Guys, these products are no joke, they get rid of oil so well and the vanishing cream guys, my goodness! It mattfies your face whilst leaving it so soft and silky to touch. As if that’s not all, these products are super affordable, I think I paid around N$150 for both in Clicks. Also a little goes a long way. So how does it work? I wash my face twice a day (I try to,lol) with the Ponds Lasting Oil Control Face Wash using my Sorbet Facial Cleanser and I follow this up by applying the Ponds Lasting Oil Control Vanishing Cream. That’s it. No toners and what nots. Just one-two step (Hey Ciara!)

Before I even contemplate applying any makeup I use my L’Oreal Infallible Mattifying Base all over my face. This is one of my favourite primers guys. It has a silky finish (gel consistency) and not only does it allow for the makeup to just glide onto your skin, it is a super effective base and does not let any oil through! Even if I’m not applying any makeup I still apply this, it mattifies my skin which is all any sister with oily skin ever wants.

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That is all I do guys and I find that this really works for my skin. Some days (depending on how hot it is) I don’t even blot my face. I have never experienced a full oil free day…until now. Obviously this might not work for everyone’s skin but I reckon these products are worth a try. Remember using drying products on your skin actually makes your oil problem even worse because when your skin detects the dryness, its first reaction is to produce more oil to rectify the imbalance. So you want to use something that is specifically geared towards oil control.

I hope this was of some use to someone, our struggle is too real, lol!

 

Everyday Work Glam

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Hey Lovelies!

This post is all about workplace makeup. I really think it is important for one to be properly put together at work. Especially where you are in a profession that requires you to meet and interact with different people all the time. That being said, you also don’t want to overdo it… You don’t want your makeup being the focal point, nor do you want lashes or glitter falling all over the place.

That being said I took some photos of m typical everyday makeup that I wear to work, its very toned down, and not too flashy. What’s also great about this look is that it can easily transition, so if I have to go to say drinks after work, I can easily switch it up and basically glam it up.

 

 

Basically this look is my foundation routine which you can read about here . I add a very subtle lipstick, usually a nude mixed with a plum colour (because we still need an element of glam). I don’t apply any eye shadow because I find it gets in my way at work. I also don’t apply lashes ( I really just don’t have time or patience in the mornings). The key aspects of a work look are flawless foundation, clean, well-groomed eyebrows,  subtle lipstick with a bit of a pop and that’s about it.

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{Product Review} Wet n Wild Mega Last Lip Colour

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This has got to be one of my most favourite products on earth… I am not exaggerating! The Wet n Wild Mega Last Lip Colours give new meaning to long lasting lipstick y’all. Okay let me start from the beginning.

In about 2014, late 2014 I happened to come across the Wet n Wild Cosmetics stand in Clicks, now being a liker of things, I decided to stop by and see if there was anything I could buy. I picked up a Mega Last Lipstick in the colour Sugar Plum Fairy, it cost me about N$45-00. The packaging wasn’t the most exciting (Like it really wasn’t) but I was ready to try this matte lipstick that promised hours of wear.

So I tried it, the texture and consistency was creamy, and actually moisturising, the colour was really pigmented and the colour I had picked showed up so well on my dark skin… I was feeling all types of ways. lol. I wore it non-stop for about two weeks before deciding to go back and get more colours…it was seriously needed at this point.

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The variety of colours that the range provides is really large and really caters for all tones of skin. The colours in the picture are my favourite. Sugar Plum Fairy is like a plum colour that is a little dark, shows up so well on dark skin. Mauve Outta Here is a really out there pink, I haven’t dared to wear it in all its glory yet, I usually pair it with a toned down lip liner or a brown/nude lipstick. Mocha-Licious is one of my current favourites, its a nude brown with a little bit of what seems like a coral undertone. Raivin raisin is also a berry/plum colour that has a hint of brown in it. I love this colour so much you guys. Cherry Bomb is also a plum /berry shade but is darker and appears a liitle more vampy (Can you tell, I love plum/berry). Finally red velvet is what it is… a red lipstick but it has a hint of coral but its not overwhelming and goes well with my dark skin.

 

The thing that makes these colours so amazing is that they actually do last… I can eat with one of these on and still have perfect lipstick. I have fallen asleep with  Sugar plum Fairy on and woken up with purple/plum lips still (Yes, it was one of those nights… sue me). Basically you really get a lot of wear time from these, flimsy packaging or not, the product gets a ten star rating from me.  Not to mention the price point, these are good lipsticks, in fact some of them even make good dupes for some of the higher end lipstick brands like MAC. Removing them isn’t as hard as one might imagine, a little coconut oil or olive oil (or any oil) on your lips then just wipe it of with a cotton pad.

I’d definitely recommend these to you guys anyday.

 

Sorbet ‘Pore Your Heart Out’ {Facial Cleanser}

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I jumped onto the facial cleanser bandwagon you guys!! Facial cleansers have become all the range with women and beauty overs all over the world. I have been wanting to get my hands on one but none of the shops here in Windhoek actually stock them. I had a brief delusional moment where I contemplated getting the Clarisonic Facial Cleanser (The price converted came to about N$ 3000.00). Thank goodness I walked into Clicks and saw that they stocked the Sorbet ‘Pore your heart out’ facial cleanser! Guys when I tell you I braved a ridiculously long queue to get this item, I don’t say it lightly. For some reason the best stocked Clicks in Windhoek also happens to be the one that always has a queue that goes all the way out the shop!

I purchased the facial cleanser for N$300.00 which I think is a score when you consider the price range of most facial cleansers. The packaging was rather cute and very much what you’d expect from Sorbet. I picked up the facial cleanser in a light blue colour.

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The facial cleanser is a mechanical cleanser that comes with three different brush heads, a stand to place it in, and a USB charging cable. The one brush head is for daily cleansing (white and grey in the picture), the second one is a silicone brush head that is meant for those with sensitive skin. The last brush head is an exfoliating brush that is meant for deep cleansing.

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Let me tell you guys how amazing this product is!!! Oh my word, the brushes are gentle enough to not be overly abrasive, yet they get the job done amazingly. I use the daily cleansing brush twice a day and it is not in any way too abrasive on my skin. I use the exfoliating brush once a week. I usually first start by removing my makeup with my Garnier Micellar Water and a cotton pad,I then wet my face with water and apply my everyday facial wash directly onto the brush.Then I press the on button and just circulate it all over  my face, taking care to avoid the sensitive eye area for the recommended time of 20 seconds.

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I remove the brush head and rinse it clean with water and more face wash after I’m done and replace the facial cleanser in its stand. The stand has handy compartment for storing the brush heads that you aren’t using. Charging with this product is so easy, yo literally plug the USB cable into the cleanser and then pop it into the computer. One full charge gives you about 3 hours of battery life which if you follow the recommended time of 20 seconds per cleanse will last you a long time. I’d definitely recommend this product to anyone looking for a really easy and efficient way of cleaning their face.

“Darling, when things go wrong in life, you lift your chin, put on a ravishing smile, mix yourself a little cocktail…”
― Sophie Kinsella

Product Review {L’Oreal Infallible Foundation & Mattifying Base}

 

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Earlier this month I went ahead and purchased a new foundation and primer. I had heard great great things about L’Oreal’s Pro Matte Collection and decided to give it a try. I purchased the L’Oreal Infallible Pro Matte Foundation in the shade Cappuccino, and I also went ahead and got the L’Oreal Infallible Mattifying Primer.

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Both products come in a squeeze tube which means you can control the amount of product you use (yay!) The foundation claims to be a full coverage foundation but I think its more of a medium cover foundation that can be built up to be full coverage. The finish is amazing, its matte but at the same time, my skin looks so smooth and velvety. There’s a bit of transfer but nothing too drastic and your face still looks intact. The Foundation promises 24 hours of wear, I’m not sure it lasts all that long but it lasts me a full work day.One thing I really love about this foundation is that it doesn’y make my face look orangey…I get that a lot with some other foundations so I usually have to do something else to counter that. The Infallible goes on like a dream, no orange at all. The only drawback (not really though) is that it does dry up a bit fast so you have to apply it one section of your face at a time. I apply it using a buffing brush, followed by a beauty blender brush just to make sure every is super blended. This product cost me N$150 in Edgars.

 

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The Infallible Mattifying Primer is a silicone type consistency and goes on very smoothly. Also, a little really does go a long way. It is a decent enough primer, and does a good job of not only mattifying the face but also of creating a smooth canvas for your makeup. I only blot my face about two times during an 8-5 day (in the heat of summer, the African sun doesn’t play). For the price you do get a lot of product pay off. The price was about N$150-00 and that isn’t bad at all, I’d definitely buy this prooduct again.

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“When virtue and modesty enlighten her charms, the lustre of a beautiful woman is brighter than the stars of heaven, and the influence of her power it is in vain to resist.”                                   ~Akhenaton