Wednesday, June 27, 2012

False Advertising?

I recently got posed a question that was suggested I turn it into a blog post. The question was

"Are the lashes in Cosmetic Mascara Ads real or fake? How can they get away with that sort of advertising?"

Many of you have seen this and know what I am talking about. See below for the following images: 

Maybelline Volume Express The Falsies Mascara

Penelope Cruz Advertisement for L'Oreal Paris Telescopic mascara

Eva Longoria for L'Oreal Volume Millions De Cils

M.A.C Plush Lash Mascara

How many of you have bought mascara because it promised that you could get lashes like these models/celebrities? Maybe that wasn't your ONLY reason you bought it, but most of the time the advertisements have a lot to do with your decision. You want a black, lengthening, volumizing, water proof mascara and you think " well I love M.A.C products and the artist in the store look amazing all the time, if I buy this mascara, I can look like them too." 

Or something along those lines. I bet none of you truly believe everything you hear. 

But how can they get away with this blatant false advertising. In everyone of these ads, you can tell the model is wearing false lashes. Who on earth has 1.5" long and perfectly curled upward lashes? (I've met a few girls actually who have. But they are rare. Also weird, I have met SO many men who have infinitely longer and more curled lashes than most women. It's so not fair!) The companies can get away with this by just instructing the MUA (makeup artist) to use a small amount of the actual product, and then they can use whatever they feel like to get the look the client wants. So they can just do one coat of The Falsies mascara on the model, and then use their Diorshow, Lancome Hypnose, or whatever expensive mascara they have to finish the eyelashes. Then the add either individual or strip false lashes as close to the waterline as possible so as to insinuate that the mascara created that look. 

So TECHNICALLY, yes, the advertised product was used. But most of us know that isn't what created that look. Fake lashes did. 

Now many of these cosmetic companies have gotten into trouble. According to the Daily Mail (UK) dated June 1st of last year:

The print commercial for LashBlast Volume promises a false lash effect. However a small print disclaimer running alongside the image states that lash inserts were applied to Miss Fox's eyes before the product was applied. 

The disclaimer is at complete odds with the copy in the ad, which reads: Is your volume true? Or false? LastBlast gives you true volume.

Disclaimer states: 'If your mascara promises volume but delivers clumps - that's false! True volume comes from our big brush, not from big clumps. Try LastBlast Volume for yourself. You may never go "false" again.'
The small print, however, which is barely visible in the bottom left-hand side on the model's neck, reads: 'Lash inserts were applied to both of Nicole’s lashes to add lash count before applying mascara.'
To the bottom left corner of left page, there is a small amount of writing. That is their disclaimer. It's SO big, I'm surprised you missed it.  Again it states, " 'Lash inserts were applied to both of Nicole’s lashes to add lash count before applying mascara.'" 


These companies can be held responsible by the FTC and the National Advertising Division of the Council of Business Bureaus. Another example is of the Taylor Swift Covergirl (again!)  NatureLuxe Mousse Mascara. 
You can read the whole article here: 

Basically, Covergirl got busted.  AGAIN!

But, there are great mascaras out there. I'm not bashing any of these mascaras by any means. I'm just saying don't expect to turn into Taylor Swift, Eva Longoria, or Penelope Cruz just by using the mascara they endorsed. They got paid big bucks to endorse it.

What do you all think about this? Have you ever been so misled by a product's advertisement that you were extremely disappointed when you got home? Or vice versa? A product that did exactly what it said it would? I'd love to hear which products you love and which disappoint you!

That's it for today class. Hope you took notes. There will be a quiz. 

Just kidding! 


Amelia St. John

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Dry, Overprocessed, Damaged, Thin Hair?

If any of those adjectives in the title apply to you, then this blog is for you!

I have colored my hair one way or another since I was 12 or 13 years old. When I was younger, Mommy used to pay for my hair to get done. As I got older, I have found that it's expensive to always go to a great hairstylist. The last year or two I have spent dying my own hair at home.

But I'm not a professional hair stylist. And over the last few times I've colored my hair, I have noticed significantly more hair loss each time. Resulting in what used to be a full, lucisous head of fine hair, to a thin head of fine hair. And it's been FREAKING ME OUT! (Please use me as a perfect example of why one SHOULD go to a professional. To prevent this from happening to you!)

I am much too young to be losing my hair. That's for when I get older. My ends are split, my hair is dry, my hairbrush is full of hair every time I brush it out, and when I pull my hair in a pony tail I notice my scalp shows much more than previously. So needless to say, I've been freaking out. And NO, I am not going to post of picture of that. I have too much pride :)

I have been trying to get my hair healthier. I have cut back DRASTICALLY on heat products, in fact I rarely use them anymore. Most days my hair is up in some sort of updo. Today in fact, my hair is in a low side braided bun.

I decided to do some research online to find affordable yet effective deep conditioners and hair masques. I decided I am willing to fork out some dough on a few different products if it'll mean my hair can return to a healthier way of life. I picked up almost $60 worth of products yesterday and decided last night to try Miracle 7 Deep Conditioner and Miracle 7 Leave In Mist.

The Deep Conditioner retails at Sally's Beauty Supply for 13.29.

 Leave in Conditioner Details

"Miracle 7 Deep Conditioner instantly detangles and defrizzes all types of hair."
  • Smoothes and adds shine
  • Improves color vibrancy
  • Defrizzes
"Miracle 7 Deep Conditioner instantly detangles & defrizzes all types of hair. Can be used as a daily or weekly conditioner. Best used after shampooing and conditioning with our color products by Miracle 7."

Usage Tips: After shampooing with our color protect shampoo and conditioner, work into hair 1-3 minutes and rinse. For a deeper conditioning, work in hair 5-15 minutes and then rinse. 

What I did: I jumped in the shower and quickly washed my hair. I have been told by many stylists that if you want to save money on a product, buy a cheaper shampoo. It's only in your hair a few seconds and then you rinse it out. But I was told spend the big $$ on conditioners. So I then put a buttload of conditioner in my hair. I don't think that was necessary but I was desperate. I decided to leave it on for 30 mins, because I wanted to see what kind of effects it would give. So I got out of the shower and after 30 mins, I rinsed it out of my hair. I then towel dried it and sprayed the Leave In Mist.

Leave In Mist Details:  Retails $13.29 at Sally's Beauty Supply
  • Repairs dry damaged hair
  • Seals & protects color
  • Stops hair breakage
  • Prevents split ends
  • Controls frizz
  • Adds shine
  • Detangles
"Miracle 7 Leave-in Mist detangles and adds shine while enhancing your hair's natural body. Stops hair breakage and prevents split ends. Controls frizz and creates heavenly silky hair."

Usage: "Use Miracle 7 Leave-in Mist for curly looks to enhance natural curl and control frizz or use to straighten hair with blow dryer and brush or flat iron."

Package Instructions: " Easy to use! Shampoo and condition hair. Towel dry. Spray Miracle 7 Leave-in Mist all over hair and comb through. Blow dry or style as desired."

Ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Cetearyl Alcohol, Behentrimonium Chloride, Propylene Glycol, Cyclomethicone, Fragrance/ Parfum, Panthenol, Silk Amino Acids, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Extract, Euterpe Oleracea Fruit Oil, Camellia Sinensis Leaf, xtract, Quaternium-80, Ascorbic Acid, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinon

After air drying for a while, I really couldn't tell any effects other than it felt soft. But the true test comes when the hair is dry. So I braided up my hair and hit the sack.

The Next Morning: OH. MY. GOSH. My hair felt so soft and smooth!!! It was kinky from the braid but did not feel dry or damaged in any way. I didn't want to ruin it by using heating products, so I just braided it up into a bun and added some hair spray. 

Now, I have to give it a few more tries, maybe even a month to really determine if it's working. I don't want to do too much of a good thing, so I will alternate between the deep conditioner and my Rusk Thickening conditioner. All the while I will try and refrain from using heat on my hair.

But if we are comparing Miracle 7 with It's A 10 leave in conditioners, I feel like they do the exact same thing. Except It's A 10 is triple the price of Miracle 7. So in my opinion, go get the cheaper version and buy yourself something nice with the extra money you are going to save.
It's A 10 Leave In Product

 I welcome anyone who has ever used this product to tell me how you like it. Or if anyone out there tries it after this blog, please let me know how it is working for you!

Can't wait to see if my hair gets it's groove back!


Amelia St. John

Feel Free to repost to your own facebook or twitter!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Review: Ardell Double Up Lashes

So yesterday I was at Rite Aid getting some supplies for work and I noticed these Ardell Double Up lashes. They basically are thick as two sets of lashes. Many makeup artist use two sets of lashes on top of each other for celebrities and red carpet events. It really opens up the eye. They retail at Rite Aid for $4.99. 
The box states " Ardell Double Up Lashes" "Double Layer Style-Fuller Thicker Look-Reuseable"

Below I did my regular eye makeup, curled my lashes and applied L'Oreal Voluminous Mascara in Black.

I applied the lashes next. (See my blog "How to Apply False Lashes" for help in application)

BAM! Look at that difference. It really opens the eye up and gives a touch of Glam to the look. All I have going on my eyes is just an all over brown with highlighter under the brow (the brows I have done with dark brown powder) and black liquid eyeliner applied to top and smudged pencil liner on my bottom lash line. Additionally, I applied Mascara to my bottom lashes to give them definition.

What's a blog without a picture of me in my office? 

I apologize for the shortness of my blog. I really like these lashes and they are really affordable for a glamorous look or if you just want to add a touch of glam to a normal day. As long as you feel as beautiful on the outside as you are on the inside.

Grade: A
Pros: Easy to apply, looks amazing, opens up the eye. Instant glam factor,
Cons: Might be too much for those who prefer a more "natural" or "organic" makeup

It gets my stamp of approval!

Stay Beautiful.


Amelia St. John

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Bronze/Gold/Copper Eye

So I really wanted to create a blog today about my bronze-y eye look. It is one of my GO-TO looks and I use the Naked Palette from Urban Decay to create most of it. I'm not happy about my photos, I'm not the greatest photographer but as my blogging goes on, I think I'll either get better with my iPhone or find my expensive camera and start using it. How many people use a real camera these days when we all have iPhone's? But now that I see the quality of these photos combined with the TERRIBLE lighting of my bedroom, I may have to start switching. I'm also a terrible model which I why I am a makeup artist and not a model. I have always felt pictures don't translate to seeing me in person. I promise, I'm very effervescent and glowing in person. Unlike the photos I'm about to show you :( But I will sacrifice my pride and post these ugly photos anyway. Because my finished product looks great! I feel like I can show you my frightening face that is untouched by makeup so I can better explain how makeup transforms.

Ready? Be brave my readers, be brave!

So to start off the face I used the Makeup Forever HD Primer all over. You can use any primer or moisturizer you like, just make sure you really get the face primed and ready for the application.

Then I started with the Urban Decay Naked Palette and used the colors Half-Baked and Smog as you see in the photo below. Half baked is a beautiful gold/bronze color and Smog is more of a deep brown bronze.

I used Half-Baked all over the eyelid from the lash line to the crease and then blended it up and out.

I then used the Smog color on the outer corner of the eyelid and used my M.A.C 224 brush to blend it up into the crease and then blend the two colors together toward the middle of the eyelid. You want the transition of colors to be seamless, as if they just flow into one another without an obvious line of demarcation.

Those are my two basic colors. Blending is key, but you don't need other colors to create this look unless you want. Makeup is all about what YOU want, that's where the creativity comes in. Here's a pro trick: If you are having trouble getting the blending part down, you can use face powder on your eyeshadow brush and use the powder to blend all the colors together. It helps reduce the demarcation!

Under the brow I used Dazzlelight eyeshadow by M.A.C. Its a shimmery, vanilla, gold toned shadow that looks great as a highlighter under the brow and in the corner of the eye. It highlights and brings the look together.

(Dazzlelight is the middle eyeshadow in the middle)

(Dazzlelight is applied like above)

I then used M.A.C Superslick Liquid Eyeliner - On the Hunt (black color) for my eyeliner. I'm going to do a separate blog on how you should apply different types of eyeliner. I think a lot of people have trouble with liquid eyeliner and how to get a steady hand and not look like you drew all over your eyelid with sharpie :)

For my lashes: I curled them with my eyelash curler to really open up the eyes. Everyone can benefit from curling their lashes. I then used L'Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes Mascara in Black for my mascara. I'm not sure how much I love this drugstore mascara yet. I've had it for awhile and used it numerous times, and while I like how long and black my lashes look with it, it comes off at the slightest rub. Yesterday for example, I had to rub my eye because my allergies were going bonkers and my eyes felt super itchy. I went to the bathroom 5 minutes later and the mascara was all over my under eye and on my hand. Not cool.

Then I did my eyebrows, foundation, blush and highlighter. Topped it off with some lip-gloss and my ridiculous-I-didn't-want-to-brush-my-hair-today-bun and headed to the office.

(No lip-gloss; in my room)
 (Lip-gloss added; now in the office)

**These "after" photos are the only reason I put my "before" photos up. See how makeup can change a person?**

That's the bronze-copper-gold look that looks amazing on those with ANY eye color. I love the Naked Palette by Urban Decay because there is SO MUCH you can do with it!

I hope these photos didn't scare you. The combination of my morning face with terrible room lighting and bad photography and horrible model just makes for a scary photo! But remember, it's about the makeup.

NO JUDGING ME! Just kidding just kidding (but really, please don't judge me lol)

Stay Beautiful.


Amelia St. John

Monday, June 4, 2012

A wedding weekend

As many of you know, my boyfriend Joel and I took our dogs and road tripped it up to Merced, California this weekend. Now we live in Los Angeles, and Merced is close to 500 miles north of us. That's a long trip for anyone. Not to mention the 99 freeway is full of fun things to see. Like farm fields, gas stations, and more farm fields.

We arrived in Merced around 1pm on Friday afternoon and the temperature was 104 degree Fahrenheit with a humidity index of like 1000!! That was not a good precursor of what to was to come. All I could think about was how the brides' (and mine) makeup was just going to melt off. We weren't doing airbrush due to sensitivity to it so I was trying to figure out other ways to keep her makeup on other than just running after her with the powder and lipstick! All my BF kept thinking about was how mad he was going to be wearing a long sleeve shirt and slacks when all he wanted was shorts and flip flops!

I went to the bride's wedding suite around 345pm and proceeded to get to work on her. I don't have any photos of her, but I'm sure I'll get a copy or two when she gets her proofs back from the photographer. And then I will do a tutorial on what I used on her face to get her bridal glow!

However, here is a picture of Joel and I at the rehearsal dinner. Where mind you, it was still massively humid and muggy. But we managed to look stellar anyhow.

The next day was the big day. The bride look AMAZING and so radiant. She didn't need any makeup, because everyone could see how beautiful inside she was and how in love she was. But her makeup turned out amazing that day as well and she was so happy with her big day. I was happy for her and it was all in all a magnificent event.  (PS, it was 10 degrees cooler with a breeze on the wedding day. Thank goodness!!)

Here is the bride getting ready by her bridesmaids. Isn't she beautiful?

Here are some shots of my makeup for the big day. I plan on doing a tutorial for this pink smoky eye with highlighted cheeks. Is there interest in this?

And below is Joel and myself at the wedding. 

So that was the big weekend. I am POOPED. I hope you all had an amazing weekend!

Stay Beautiful.


Amelia St. John