A Wicked Lady Tells All

Realistica: Realistic, budget friendly fashion advice for your everyday, extraordinary life.


I love shoes, purses, clothes, playing with my hair. All those things that are stereotypically "girly". I also hate pearls, little white gloves, and anything else that makes me feel less than the brilliant, powerful, and all around BAMF that I am.

I've been in the theatre for over twenty years as a little bit of everything. Yes, I have welded upside down from a second story set in nothing but gauzy underwear half hour before a show opened. My fashion needs to be classic and tough. I prefer to keep my hair purple. And I run very quickly in four inch heels.

Brand Rec: Aromaleigh

  • Apr. 27th, 2010 at 6:57 PM
One of those things that I've been wanting to do with this blog is do product recommendations. I'm picky about what I use because it needs to survive my oily, sweaty face and sometimes grueling work day. That, and it needs to fit into my budget. The whole point of realistica: realistic, budget friendly fashion advice for women finding their own style.

Aromaleigh Minerals

My sister got me on to this place. She sent me a huge collection of sample sized pigments from this place (about 30 samples in all). From the timing, I think someone was reading some certain Twilight friendly blogs, but that's a whole different story.

I wear powder, but I don't really get particularly adventurous with it because my skin is so very oily. Powder just drips off my face in an hour, no matter the weather! But I found with these little beauties, the powder no only stayed on no problem with some eye potion but was still highly saturated with color by the end of the day! SCORE!

I highly recommend the sample sized to people that are wanting to try out something different and don't want to make a huge dent in their wallet for a color that just might not work for you. It is a little hard to recommend a specific color to try: the company regularly reformulates and rebrands a color into something else entirely. I have loads of pinks, purples, glitter purples, shimmer whites, and all sorts of crazy neon colors that I haven't even gotten to try yet. I've tried just about every current line, and they all please me.

The company is doing one of their regular season clear out for new colors and lines, so now is the time to grab up some super cheap, excellent make up! Samples range from $.50 - $3.50, and they also do loads of "get even more free samples with purchase!" promos.

Good luck adventuring, and tell me what you think. :D

Make up, skin care, and you!

  • Apr. 27th, 2010 at 3:17 PM
This essay started as a comment to someone on the vastness of the internet asking for recommendations about skin care regimens. I was rather enthusiastic with my help. I get to talk in a long monolong about make up and things to put on my face? Oh no! The humanity!

First thing is first: let's talk about me. I have combination skin. It is oil yet dry. Fun times, let me tell you! It took me until I was twenty-four to really figure out what to do with myself besides spackle on the pancake make up. What I will do this essay is recommend products I use, have been shared with me as working, other systems you might try for yourself, and intercut that with my own regiment. The thing about skin care is that you must, sadly, experiment a great deal to find what works for you.

Let's start out with a rec: In My Kit. It's a professional makeup artist that recs products that are tried and tested. I agree with him 90% of the time, too! You'd be surprised to know this, but most things in a professional make up kit cost less than six dollars. It's only the specialty things, like fake blood, latex, silicone fillers, and other things that get expensive. That and buying in bulk.

The moisturizer that I can't stop recommending is Cetaphil. It is this cheap, never advertised, drug store brand moisturizer on the bottom shelf that is the greatest make up secret ever held. This is GREAT for your skin. It moisturizes and helps heal damage. I've used this stuff for the last six months (I got convinced off it after college by a well advertised brand, silly me), and it had done WONDERS for my skin. Love it, would bathe in it if I could. I get a daily that has a SPF in it, and I wear it under my make up.

What you want in a moisturizer is that is “non-comedogenic”, meaning it does not clog your pores, petroleum free, and if you get a moisturizer with SPF, then get PABA free. Your skin gets addicted to petroleum. Did you ever notice that if you use chapstick, you have to use a great deal of it after a while? That's because it's filled with petroleum. It takes off a layer of skin, and makes your skin crave it or it dries out. PABA is compound they used to use in SPFs (and sometimes still do) that has been found to increase the chance of skin cancer. So say no to petroleum and PABA!

My other moisturizer (I need to use two because my skin can get that dry from having to use stuff on my acne) is Olay complete. I like it, it works for me, and it is within my (very small) budget. It is replaceable to me, but I haven't found anything else I like as much yet. That's a big thing about skin care, make up, and in general, fashion: if after you finish, you don't think to yourself, “That feels so great! I feel great! I look great! Let's do that again!” then it isn't worth repeating.

For cleansers, I'm a bit more fast and loose. As long as it is a cleanser, it works on my skin. I've never found much of a difference product to product, but that's a “just me” thing. Currently, I use the cleanser from Acne.org, and I like it. It lasts forever, and when you take that into account with the original cost (the package is more on the expensive side), it is worth the investment.

Moisturizers and cleansers are two of the most important things in a skin care regiment. You can just do those two steps when you travel, and it can normally be enough for the short term. Everything else is gravy to speed the process along (which, you should do. Products can take YEARS off of letting something fix itself naturally).

For other products to help with my acne, I use exfoliation, toner, and two fixers. I highly recommend the three step system: cleanser, toner, fixer. I add the exfoliation step because my skin needs it. My toner is an Estée Lauder (it is more expensive but it feels so nice on my skin!), my exfoliater is Neutragena. Again, my two fixers are from Acne.org. I love the Acne.org line. It helped so much on my skin. I use it both on my face and on my back, and it helps so much with prevention and the scaring. My back and my cheeks were horrible for an extended period of time because of an infection in my skin that took a long time to conquer. This stuff really helped with the scars that I was worried I was going to need some pretty invasive measures to fix, so this stuff has got me hook, line, and sinker.

When I'm wearing a lot of makeup, I rip out my cold cream and eye make up remover. For that, I use a tub of Ponds (I used to use the moisturizer as well, but it has petroleum in it, blast it!) and a Revlon eye make up remover before I clean my face. Yes, do it in that order! You're face will not be clean otherwise.

I love Estée Lauder and MAC, but I don't use everything they make. Some stuff just doesn't work for me. I love MAC's makeup prep & finish line (I can't live without my FIX+) but most of their stuff is not really for “every day” use. Estée Lauder, on the other hand, I only really like their foundations besides their cleansers. That's just how it goes! Just because you like a particular product from a brand, that doesn't mean you'll like everything they make.

My own make up foundation (which gets worn almost everyday) is the Cover Girl Trublend smart color. It goes on how I want, it comes off how I want, and it stays pretty clean on my face. I'm really oily, so I need to de-oil and fix the shiny spots a few times a day. That means I both blot and wear powder. Blotting is removing the oil from your face without removing your makeup. Rice paper and special facial blotting paper are available, but honestly, I use a paper towel & do a quick touch with just a tad of powder. But I use specialty powder that doesn't build up: a Ben Nye translucent powder that I stole out of my stage makeup kit. You can find it online from more specialty make up dealers, and I love it incredibly. I will never go back to any other face powder! It's my secret on the side next to my iMac husband. ...Okay, and my entire shoe collection. DON'T TELL THE PRADAS!

Everything else that goes on my face, all I can say is I try just about everything. I read my ingredient list, and if I don't like what I see, it doesn't go on my face. I don't like using a lot of silicon based things, but if it is a special occasion that requires me to look great for hours on end, you bet it is going on my face!

Silicon smooths your face, giving a flat surface to work with and sucks up the pigment you put on. Urban Decay's eyeshadow primer potion is famous for being the best and rightfully so. That stuff makes anything stick, stay, and burst with color! Urban Decay is one of the best places for eye and lip colors. Except for kohl. I love kohl, wear it constantly. The liquid bronze I wore from high school through college stopped being made recently, and I've been bereft ever since! I don't wear any other eyeliner nor mascara (everything gives me raccoon eyes). I've found that Guerlain's loose powder kohl as a close replacement, but it just isn't the same!

If you're looking for something to give you a “matte” finish (ie photoshoots, bridal, events where you want to look unrealistically perfect), Make Up For Ever's primers and mattifying primers (no, seriously!) do the trick. That's what most artists use for HD filming these days to hide the fact actors do indeed have pores. The Keromask Masking Cream is the secret stuff used to cover the giant bags under super models' eyes after spending the whole night out before a shoot. Well, that and hemorrhoid cream.

The last thing I can really say about facial things is: clean tools are a clean face. If you use your fingers, always wash your hands before touching your face. Don't share your makeup or your tools. It will break you out. You need to replace the sponges in your powder box and used to put on your foundation regularly. As in, preferably monthly, but if you can't do that, every two months. Your brushes and other facial tools need to be cleaned and/or replaced regularly as well, though not as often as your sponges. I change out my brushes every six months to a year, depending on how cheaply they are made and feel clean. You should weigh your options: if you get expensive brushes, you must clean them and maintain them, otherwise you are wasting your money. Cheap brushes work just as well, they just don't last long.

Your face is gross, bacteria breeds in your sponges, and if you don't replace them, you are putting some very nasty things on your face and into your pores. This can cause massive infections that can take a very long time (and money) to get rid of entirely. I speak from experience people: replace your tools regularly!

Something you might notice here is that I don't rec a great deal of vegan products, and most especially, Lush products. I haven't found a lot of vegan things that I can really use on myself. Which, annoying! I would love to find something! I buy many of the vegan products from Urban Decay and other brands, but there hasn't been anything that stands out to me as long lasting (it doesn't pass my oily face, walking in the wind and snow to work test). I don't recommend Lush specifically because, to be very blunt, I don't like their products. I love the idea, but I can count on one hand the products I've tried from them that work for me and people that I trust that work in the industry. The few times I've tried a variety of different products from them, my skin broke out all over, my hair did not like me any more, and it took a long time to fix the damage. To each their own, but you won't get this fashionista's seal of approval.

My closing thoughts:

It matters what you put on your face. You can use too much product, too little, and bad product to an injury to your health. Buying something because it is cheap isn't the best way to go about things: get the bang for your buck. Get good stuff that will work for you, within the budget you set for yourself, or do not get anything. When a product that I know works for me gets on the more expensive side of things, I tell myself to look at it as an investment. I don't get brand loyalty; I get product loyalty. If it works, it works. If it doesn't work anymore, it doesn't need to be in my daily routine nor do I need to waste my money on it. If it looks gross, smells gross, it is gross! Replace it! Cleans tools mean a clean face.

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[community profile] realistica
Realistica Fashionista

Just Another Crazy Shoe Lady

I'm a lady that loves fashion and sharing. Stay for the giggles, enjoy some advice!


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