Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Bronzed in the Dead of Winter

Our First Christmas Tree

Sorry to have left you all hanging, but the holidays are a busy time around these parts. Having family in town has made it more exciting and memorable, but doesn't leave a lot of down time for blogging! We had an absolutely lovely Christmas--complete with food, drink, and antics from my 4-yr old nephew that would have you on the floor laughing and gasping for air. Right off the bat, the below sign was placed on his bedroom door.

I thought a little Christmas cheer on the nails would keep things upbeat--and no, I don't mean candycane or santa designs. But I did go the "different color finger" route, and slapped China Glaze's 2NITE on the ring fingers. I see it this way--red is the color of the season, while the holographic blue reminds me of the icy outdoors. A little over the top, I know.

One thing I've been forced to work on during this cold month, is a natural looking tan. I can't stand how sallow I appear as the sky becomes grey. Literally--with this color skin, I'm a fascinating shade of yellow. So to bronzers I turn. This month, I've been going a little nutso over Lancome's Star Bronzer in Bronze Terre. It had been on the mind for some time--but it wasn't until a couple of weeks ago that I actually picked it up. Lancome products are typically uninteresting to me, but as of late, there have been a few things that have grabbed my attention. This is an excellent bronzer. It has the very slightest shimmer--so slight, that it can be a tad comparable to Korres' Monoi bronzer. I appreciate it in compact form, as there is another version to be found in a brush (no thanks). Word is, they're discontinuing these compacts soon, so if you're a bronze fanatic like myself, get thee to a store quickly.

The other bronzer that has been keeping me happy is Too Faced's Snow Bunny. It came to me via an epic and ridiculously generous swap (next post), and for the last five days of ownership it has made its way to my face each day. Looking at it reminds me of neopolitan ice cream, and the shimmer is not intrusive at all. That must be something I dislike. Shimmer that feels intrusive.
If you've yet to test this gorgeous bronzer, these cold months provide the perfect time. It truly leaves you with a "just got off the slopes" kind of effect.

Is there a bronzer that's getting you through the Winter? What changes in your regimen as the weather changes?

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

I hope that you are all enjoying time with those that you love today. It's my favorite time of the year, and I'm loving every second with my family. The happiest of holidays to all of you!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Last Minute Beauty Gift Ideas

Ladies and gentlemen, Suka & Spice now has its very own domain name! A little home in the big world of the internet. It's like we've moved from renting an apartment to buying property. As if that weren't enough, we've finally got the new header up that I've been promising! I'm so obsessed with the drawing, which was created by my dear (handsome..single..intelligent..*ahem, ladies*) cousin. My vision was an island girl relaxing in the ocean--he took that and ran with it. I'm not at all shocked. What do you think?

With just a handful of days left until Christmas, I'm sure there are a few of you out there who are contemplating a late night trip to the mall to pick up last minute gifts. I finally had it two nights ago, and completed the bulk of my shopping online. People are crazy at this time of year, and I swear the shops bring out the best in them. Sometimes I have to stop just to tweet something ridiculous that I hear when waiting in line at the register.

Oh right. Last minute gifts.

So, if you happen to be one of those last minute shoppers, and you're just not sure what to grab your best girl, friend, or beauty-obsessed pal--these are a few of my favorite recent palettes. You'll be bumped to the top of their nice list in no time.

Urban Decay Book of Shadows II

Sixteen vibrant shadows, two liners (which can undoubtedly be used daily), and a mini eyeshadow primer. This is sold out in Sephora (still available at Ulta), and all the more reason to gift it. Who doesn't like something limited? Best for: The girl who is a bit creative, and likes to experiment with color.

Too Faced Glamour Revolution

Glosses, blush, bronzer, shadows and primer. The fact that there is a chocolate scented bronzer included in this one, is enough reason to justify this as a gift. Add to that, the fact that one of the nine eyeshadows is called George & Weezie. Best for: The one who does her makeup in the car, or the bathroom at work--so she'll be needing everything in one place.

Benefit Powderazzi

Although the smallest of the three gift ideas, this may be my favorite. Benefit has delivered on a trio boxed blusher/bronzer, consisting of Dallas, Hoola, and Coralista. I picked this up because of Coralista (top left), and have been using that blusher nearly every day since. It's a shade that would suit nearly any skin tone, and leaves you with a glowy and natural effect. Available exclusively at Ulta and Best for: The chic who goes au natural most of the time. This way, she can contour with variety.

Are you finished with your shopping list? H
ave any beauty-related items fallen onto it?

You know I couldn't leave this girl, with her snowflake bow, out of the festivities...

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Chocolate in a Tub

Ladies, has it been a tough month or what? Chocolate has been on the mind lately. I think I've reached for a bar nearly every day (a dentist appointment definitely needs to be made right about now), and the end of my Cadbury's Fruit & Nut stash has arrived. Which means *cough cough* if there are any lovely family members reading this who would like to do a trade-off, please let me know. I can't live on these yuck American versions of the bar!

Typically, I steer away from chocolate scented beauty products, as they tend to smell more of a scratch 'n sniff sticker than they do an authentic cocoa treat. Well, I've found something different--and oh is it tasty!

Sweet Beauty is an organic chocolate spa treatment line. They use organic Theo chocolate (which is a favorite of mine--local, too!), as the base of all of their products. But that's not all. In the Cherish Sugar Scrub, you'll discover chocolate, coconut creme, and cane sugar. It's not the most appetizing site, but the smell is divine. It smells like something you'd want to stuff in your mouth--and I'd be lying if I were to say I haven't tried a little bit in the shower. So yes, it is edible (and good at that)! It ain't all sweets though--there's a lot of scrubbing goodness that comes from this guy. But to be totally honest, since it leaves you feeling as though you've jumped in a mud bath of chocolate, I guess that's neither here nor there.

Anything from the line would be a fantastic gift, as they all smell exactly as they are described. With the 10% off promo that the site is running, now is a great time to get those last minute orders in for the holidays!
As many of you can attest to, it's difficult to avoid the shopping temptation when there are such great blogs circulating in the online beauty world. Both Su-pah (Treasure Trove of Makeup), and Tali (The Gloss Goss) got me hip to the Jane Iredale Chocoholicks lipgloss collection. Four little pots of chocolate inspired goodness, nestled into Reese's peanut butter cup-like wrappers. You get truffle, caramel, strawberry cream, and chocolate orange. I was a bit leary (although I'm a huge fan of the Iredale line in general), and wasn't sure that I wanted to dip my finger into a brown-tinted pot each time I reapplied the product.

No need to fear, as I was given a complimentary retractable lip brush with purchase. This tool alone, could have made me buy anything else that was stored in a pot. It's genius! I know that this is the typical route for many people who don't like to repeatedly stick their finger into a lip product--but it just happens to be a small detail that I tend to overlook.

The shades are all just brown yet sheer enough, but each have a slight bit of shimmer to them. I like them especially for the fact that they come out so nicely on a brown girl like myself. The "barely there" lip that is similar to that of a concealer stick, is so 1999.

Our ornament of the day:

Pineapples are such a huge part of the island diet. My ma still manages to search out ones that are perfectly sweet and ripe, even in this 20 degree weather! I don't know how she does it--it's as though it is a part of her genetic makeup, to be able to locate and serve us tropical fruit year-round.

Are you a fan of chocolate? What do you turn to when the going gets tough?

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Holiday Collection Time

There a handful of Holiday collections that have arrived on the scene this season, yet very few that I have found myself interested in. One that caught my eye, was Cargo's Hands of Hope palette. Do I need more eyeshadow? No. Are they exceptionally large for a palette, and a very good price? Yes. Were they worth adding to my collection in terms of quality and pigmentation? Absolutely.

Although the above factors were taken into account when purchasing, I think the most unique thing about this palette is the concept. I love the hamsa hand on the cover of the cardboard casing, as much as I enjoy it impressed in each of the individual shadows. I think that this sign of hope works perfectly with the theme of the Holiday season. I appreciate the integration of the religious/spiritual, with...well, beauty products. Why not?!

Each shadow is quite pigmented, yet I haven't done a lot of looks with only the colors from the palette as they're quite unique on their own. Cargo's Holiday offerings, are all a bit of the Mediterranean or Eastern-tone variety (you know, whatever that means...I'm still disappointed that their Tonga blush is nearly untraceable on my skin).

swiped straight from the pan...

...and in no particular order

For those of you who follow me on Twitter, you know I was so excited to get my hair done last week. I love my stylist. He gets it right every time--so straight, that I don't know what to do with myself, and I almost always use it as an excuse to eat out, or do something where it can be seen in public. This last time around, it literally felt like I was wearing a wig because it was so flat.

And in other news, Advent is upon us again. It's one of my favorite times of year, as we lead up toward Christmas. I prefer to celebrate the twelve days of Christmas beginning on Christmas day. But as it is, there are holiday parties and celebrations that require things to be in order prior. Our Advent wreath, is our way of taking things slow, in an otherwise whirlwind season. I used to mark this time with a calendar, which had little chocolates behind every day of the month. Anyone else have one of those?

And for the ornament of the day...

This bright birdie reminds me of Brazil. The colors, the sparkle, and that tail feather. Ooh lala!

There are so many holidays and feasts around this time. What are you celebrating? What are the festivities and how do you prepare? Any Holiday collections that you've had your eye on?
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