Beauty junkies and beauty bloggers must have mentioned a beauty swap somewhere. So here I will be explaining it to you, for those who are curious or still do not know what it is, how it could help you out and your beauty-loving friends out there, as well as how it can save you bucks and some guidelines for you and your gals.
A beauty swap is a very convenient way for you to sample or try out beauty products with the help of a friend or another beauty blogger. You can find out another person’s likes and dislikes, and you set a budget and shop for beauty products that you would want them to try. From toners, foundation to wipes and makeup remover, you get to have a brand new beauty experience and discuss why the other works better for you or what different skin problems you have.
It is like sharing notes when you were back in school but this time, you have the budget and time to try it out with a bunch of beauty products. Usually, there will be skin care products in the box, and of course, palettes of eye makeup, lip colour and beauty tools like eyelash curlers and brushes. If you are more of a nail polish junkie, or simply someone who has a big love for lipstick, you can mention this too and your super friends would gladly oblige. You will also have to choose the products which you have come to love and include notes on how you use it.
In short, a beauty swap is providing another friend your beauty routine, having them experience what you usually do and wait for their reactions. It is like walking in someone else’s shoes, but in a beauty swap, you are swapping one another’s experience for beauty tips that actually make a difference!
A beauty swap is one way for you to try out beauty products and it is one way for you to know your friend’s likes and dislikes when you are swapping. If you have the same skin problems (acne-prone skin, dry skin, etc.), then you can readily get rid of those beauty products that are already gathering dust in your vanity table. You can always keep in mind that the wrong shade of pink lipstick for you could just be another lady’s treasure.
You will also be surprised at how well the products you have swapped will work for you. Sometimes, your skin has been used to that same brand freshener you have been using for years, that your skin has just developed a form of immunity, or simply, it is time to try something new.
To make swapping more fun, host a theme for your beauty swap. The list should be short, do not go beyond ten and remember to invite your friends “whose shampoo you are confident in sharing with”. You should make it clear to everybody who will be attending that you will only accept barely used or brand new products and tools. This is for your protection and to avoid any bacterial infection or breakouts later on. The basis of judging whether the beauty products you have been sampling will not have to involve the infection caused by dirty or half-empty beauty products.
The more your friends bring, the better choices you have for swapping. You can readily indicate if you also accept sample packs, sachets, bottles or tiny packaging. You can organize your place like a beauty counter and you can put together supplies like tissue, mirrors and sanitizers or rubbing alcohol. You can do a beauty swap near a lavatory, or simply show your guests where the nearest bathroom is.
Pile your products according to type: makeup, fragrances, tools, and be creative with signs and tags. Do highlight important notes on how these should be used, or if there are specific products that are dual purpose like tinted moisturizer with SPF.
Just in case your girls will be thirsty or hungry after hours of affordable and convenient beauty product shopping, prepare snacks and drinks (you can go with cocktails too) and do keep it neat. A corner with these refreshments is also good. Remember that messy food and makeup do not go well together.
Before you begin your swap, you can label the products according to the number of points based on bottle size, use, etc. You then give your friends tickets to spend, and they can choose the same number of products which they have brought.
To make the swap more interesting, you can donate a new beauty product or fragrance to a lucky guest. And what do you do with unswapped products? You and your friends can leave them at any women’s shelter and you can strike a feel good streak knowing that a less fortunate person will definitely appreciate fresh toiletries.
Why don’t we make this fun for every one? There are women who want to stick to the classic styles of nail polish, from the timeless French manicure, to the ever so glamorous scarlet and ruby red. There are so many women out there with many different personalities, and we would love to get to know more about them, and even if there were time, surely there are some unique characters out there that have an interesting story to tell. The nail polish colours below could be a guide to telling what mood you are in, or how you are feeling for that day. Just by taking a look the shades you usually buy, you can tell what kind of a person you are.
Personally, I have so many colours that range from salmon to bright yellow, even glittery gold and taupe. And do not even get me started on how much I enjoy layering the glitters over base colours, and there are new trends out there I like to try! I only switch colours one every two weeks so give my nails rest, and I also avoid bright colours when I have important events related to work, I have to look polished and presentable but not too loud. Let us also not forget special events like Valentine’s, Chinese New Year, Christmas and New Year, I like dressing up on these occasions and I also like my nail polish to match. (You can see how obsessed I am right here.)
So let us get the ball rolling and see which personality you want to indicate when choosing a certain colour of nail lacquer. What is great about having more than one colour is that you can easily switch at a swipe of the brush applicator and you are good to go as soon as the coat dries.
This is one of those shades that are calming and quite comfortable to wear without having to be too loud. Do you remember that feeling you get when you are staring at the ocean’s horizon on a bright summer day and you look into the depth of the blue? I don’t mean to sound poetic here, but with a good shade of blue, that is exactly what you get. A rich shade of blue is very much like the ocean and the sky, and it goes to show that the woman sporting this shade is not afraid of change. She knows how to feel powerful and can manage, and control situations around her. Blue signifies stability and influence, and it is also the colour of breezy, laidback lifestyles (so much like resort umbrellas in stripes and bikinis). The woman wearing this colour is smart and down to earth, not to mention crisp and cautious, she knows where she is headed.
For many years, red has been the ultimate statement-making colour when it comes to clothes, jewellery, shoes and of course now that we are talking about nail polish, it simply means sultry, and sometimes bold. It is the colour of seduction, and even if there are already many new shades out there, you will be surprised to know that so many women who have a considerable collection of nail polish still go back to red every once in a while. It is said that there is a nostalgic feeling being associated with the application and use of red. After all, it goes to show that red is sexy. The shades to go for are scarlet, ruby and sometimes a cross between maroon and the bright and bold red. The words to describe you are: outgoing, daring and highly confident.
Painted and sparkly nails take a lot of work and patience to get done. Now if you tell people you did them all by yourself, it only goes to show that you are a trendsetter in your own right and that you have an artistic side. Why would you go plain or just let anyone else have your nails done when you can perfectly have them done by yourself the way you want it?
Pampered.Sophisticated. These are just the impressions you pick up when you see a woman with unchipped, pink nail polish. There is just something flirty and feminine about pink that people always get to associate the colour with. Baby pink just shows what kind of a sweetheart you really are.
If you want to scream attention and have a playful side, sporting neon colours could do just the trick for you. Any neon colour shows that you are an extrovert and you are present where there is a good party. It signifies that you like having a good time and you can definitely have some fun, thank you very much.
You can say a lot by your choice of nail polish and who knows, even people form an opinion about you just by looking at your hands. Remember that clean, naked nails are better than chipped polish because the latter only shows that you do not have time to groom yourself or simply do not care about your appearance.
Now that you see yourself and realize that you have been surrounded by more makeup than you could ever consume, not to mention that your friends and family have decided the best gift to hand to you is makeup even if it is not in sync with your skin tone, you still receive them anyway and just store them all in one corner until you see it-that expiry date on the packaging even though it is still sealed.
Then there are those you have bought out of the fear that you will run out one day. You look at the price tags and then just realize what a complete waste of money it is. Would you ever allow yourself to sink in this situation ever again? Gather all those expired cosmetics and let us see what kind of work needs to be done.
Most cosmetics do not have an expiry date but experts do agree that mascara should be the first one to be thrown out. It is the first to cause infection, and if you do not want to have pink eye, then by all means, toss it out. What you have to remember is that the moment you open your makeup, bacteria can readily come in, not to mention the cosmetic’s effectiveness decreases over time, more so if the product is not stored properly.
As soon as the product is opened, bacteria that is airborne is rushed in, and this is added when you touch the product or even substance with hands that are dirty, or use tools that are also unclean. You will know that any makeup product or cosmetic that changes smell, texture or ones that lose its fragrance or become sticky should be thrown out as soon as possible. You will also know that the effectiveness of your product has reached its point when you observe more frequent breakouts-but you do not want to go there.
You have to remember that you have until six months to empty those beauty products and use clean tools to protect yourself too. Keeping them in a cool, clean storage space could help too. Direct sunlight may trigger a chemical reaction and cause unwanted effects on your skin.
There are alternative uses for expired makeup, however, such as applying outdated facial moisturizer to your feet for an instant foot salve or hand softener. Foundation and concealers can be used on the body because this region of the skin is not as sensitive as that of the face. You can conceal those mosquito bites and pimples, and the shimmer can go on the back and toes.
Facial cleansers and toners can be alternatives for after shave. Outdated lip balms, mascara and eyeliner can be used for costume parties where you have to dress up like Halloween, and do remember to remove completely with an effective makeup remover.
The old compact powder can be used while threading or plucking the eyebrows and then wash off completely after with a mild soap.
Do not use expired cosmetics and blend them with the new ones. It will have a different effect on the skin.
You can still extend the wear of some of your makeup, and remember that hygiene is still a priority. Before you experiment with your makeup, always wash your face and hands with a mild soap. Do not directly touch your makeup with your fingers. If you have disposable applicators, then use them. If you prefer blending with your fingers, scoop them out a little with a disposable spoon.
Do not share your makeup with others. Keep your toys to yourself, you will be protecting your skin this way. Also, you must keep the containers tightly sealed when you put them away for storage so that no foreign substance could get in. Leaving your makeup on the vanity will invite more harm than good, so be a responsible person.
If you observe that the colour of your makeup has changed, throw it away, or as soon as a bad odour develops. Depending on the type of makeup, your beauty products have preservatives which break down in time. When you are blending, do not use water that is taken from unreliable sources. And by all means, do not ever use saliva which could contain bacteria as well. If the makeup you are using has a different consistency or texture, the preservatives or active ingredients have already probably broken down.
It takes a little observation and your good judgment to say whether or not the expired makeup in your stash is still good for use. If not, try to recall how well you have stored them so you can save your skin from embarrassing breakouts too.
For those of you who are wondering who sets the colour of the year, it is Pantone, a colour-identifying company which determines the colour which then sets the ball rolling for many aspects in life which are mostly based on colour, from fashion, beauty, graphic design and more. Last year’s Pantone colour of the year was Tangerine Tango which is a punchy, bright orange. This year, it is the lovely and luxurious shade of Ultramarine Emerald Green.
There are two reasons why I love the colour. First of all, if you are born in the month of May, you will be very familiar with it because it happens to be the month’s birthstone. So you could imagine how rich jewel tones are. Another thing is that it is very wearable, no matter in which region or country you are. This colour has a lot of personality, and there are many options on how to wear it this year. Beauty junkies out there will be delighted to mix and match with many different other shades just like myself.
You can incorporate emerald into your style this year with this certain green pop. Maybe this is why mint green was so huge last year, to pave the way for more jewel tones side by side with its pastel counterpart!
What’s turning out to be popular during the last few months of last year was caviar nails. Now more and more women are enjoying it and are trying on new patterns and designs. Usually, caviar nails have a matte nail polish for a base and the mini caviar beads are usually just one colour or multi-coloured. Now the fun part is that it is easy to do and can pass as any DIY project. There are many kits available out there right now and you do not need to go to a salon to have it finished. You can do it at home and have fun sharing your kit with your girlfriends and sisters. Most kits have a funnel to make the beads stick better while the base coat is still wet so that it sticks better. The base coat is usually specially formulated to act as an adhesive for the beads.
Emerald tips are not solely defined by beads creating caviar nails. You can also have variations with your nails by using matte polish or high shine and gloss in sheer. Similar shades can have an ombre effect with the use of a sponge and careful application. With creativity and some sparkly glitters, you can still be in sync with the latest styles and without overdoing it. There are many online tutorials and inspirations from magazines to help you decide which styles to follow.
Personally, I want to try out a matte emerald and pastel green shades to create an ombre effect. The best choices for these are some deep shades of jewel tones and a nail polish similar to avocado green. This is best during the summer. As for wearing these type of nail polish styles in the office, you can check if your dress code allows these kinds of styles. Or you can quietly observe your superiors, especially the senior ones and those who are more expressive when it comes to dressing up. Even if you have a strict dress code or if you are a figure in your office, you can go for the more subtle nail polish style with a little sheer when it comes to emerald green.
Accessorizing these days is easier than you would think. When you decide to accessorize, it does not mean you really have to break the bank. What is wise though for you when it comes to accessorizing is to invest in some things knowing that you can use them later on. Bags, hats and jewelleries are good choices and here are some tips on how to effectively accessorize.
There are many good quality bags out there, especially ones that are locally made which can serve good purpose. For summer, those that are woven and have matching cute colours are best choices. For winter, even leather bags and those that are coloured emerald green can match your scarf or hat. Drop earrings or chandelier earrings are another way to tie up emerald green in your look. Being consistent when it comes to different details make you seem more polished and prepared.
Likewise, you can readily match two trends together. Since floral is also in, you can match the emerald green details with florals during summer or spring. You have a full year ahead so there are many opportunities for you to mix and match. You can still look out for a tennis bracelet with emerald stones to help make the matching a little easier too.
Be creative and see where the colour of the year takes you!
If you have been reading our blog and know the difference between signature scents, or simply those that are imitations, you will know by now that the knock-offs do not have a lasting power as that of the authentic ones. It may copy the original perfumes, from labels, bottles to scents, but the lasting power is the ones which determine your money’s worth.
When you are searching for those bargain scents, it will sound good at the time because you are saving money and still getting the fragrances you have always wanted for a quick pick me up. But you should have to be wary of where you are buying and the quality of these scents. If you are buying in an alley or thrift shop with unbelievable prices then you have better think first. Chances of these fragrances being watered down are big, or that they are made of different, cheaper ingredients. Before you purchase one for yourself, you should spritz a little on your wrist and see if your skin reacts for any allergic triggers. Also, do get your fragrances from a reputable source. If you are buying online from auction shops or wholesalers, always check the seller’s feedback. Now that you have stirred clear from knock off fragrances, you can now apply these tips to make sure your perfumes stay on longer.
You are ready to start your day and spritz your fragrances. This could just help boost your mood especially on a busy day. You have to make sure that your skin is clean and fresh before you spray on your favourite scent. Moist skin is best. If your perfume comes in a gift set with soap or lotion, or even a shower gel, this could help you out with retaining the scent longer, as this is specifically formulated. It is money that is well spent and it could complement the scent, extending its staying power. You can then achieve a full effect. If you do not want to spend on other additional products, you can use a non-scented lotion that will help moisturize your skin. Also applying non-scented lotion would not clash with the scent, no matter how mild it is. You can apply perfume on your pressure points such as the neck, wrists and behind the knees and then mist your body with your favourite scent. You can always apply these ahead of dressing up.
Our history as a human race will reveal how fascinated we are with scents that are pleasurable. It is because perfumes are captivating and this is what makes us enticing to other people. It is meant to enhance our personality, and fortunately, even remembered. You might also be surprised to know that no two persons smell alike. Likewise, person A’s preference of perfume is also different compared to person B’s. While you like strong, crisp and spicy scents, others may prefer sporting a light, powdery one.
Perfume is not only a luxury item but a necessity today. More manufacturers have become creative and innovative in coming up with scents and fragrances that can stand out and make an impact in the market. Now, there is customized perfume which is tailored to any individual’s genetic makeup so that there will be no two scents alike!
Be careful though of perfumes out there. Not all types of perfumes are the right blend to your skin. If you have the wrong selection of perfume, you tend to shun away people instead of making them want to be with you. Your chosen scent has to be in complement with your natural aroma and skin type. You can have a subtle scent that lingers a while on your clothes and skin. Also, when you are trying perfumes, do not spray more than three fragrances at once because at this point your nose will not be able to tell the difference.
What good are samples for then? Samples allow you to try out a fragrance and you can leave the scent on for a day. Also, you will be able to determine if the scent is suitable for your body chemistry. You will also be able to tell if you are about to break out with an allergy or headache.
Do not leave the perfume bottle sitting around for too long, especially if the bottle is a pour-type and does not have a spritzer to regulate the flow. Once you have opened a bottle, you should stick to using it regularly so that the scent would not fade. Keep it away from direct sunlight because this could have an effect on your fragrance. Think chemistry.
It is not advised to spray perfume directly on fur and fabric because it will stain later on. Try to keep perfume to a minimum also when you have metallic jewellery on, this could cause your metals to discolour. And do not try to bath in perfume when you have not bathed! The body odours will not necessarily go away but create an unpleasant scent together with your perfume.
It is fine to stick to one scent all year round, though you can always switch if you feel like it just to break it off every once in a while. You can go for oriental scents during the winter and light, breezy scents during the summer and spring.