Post #10- MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Holiday Lippies are a Must!

Pandemic or no pandemic, Christmas celebrations must go on, like Winter always does after Fall. We’re used to seeing all kinds of sparkle and glam for the Holiday season and as we go from Christmas to New Year celebrations, we have so many opportunities to dress up our pout. My birthday falls just between the two. It’s like, Happy Birthday Jesus! Happy Birthday Temeka! Happy New Year! (More about this next week.) Just because we’re home or restricted doesn’t mean we can’t take it up a notch from our regular meal time festivity and appear to the table in full regalia! I love this week in the Winter season and one day I’ll spend it somewhere warm but since I’m Toronto-bound, let’s see what the makeup drawer has for the holidays. 

Somebody say Red! Of course, red is necessary for the holidays but how would I do it? Well, I’m sure you remember my I See Red post where I shared many of my favourite kinds of red. So here is a quick recap of one I think is perfect for that Christmas Day look or that Christmas kiss goodnight. Here I am wearing Pioneer by Maybelline Superstar Matte Ink in the production The Nativity Musical by Church on the Queensway. Thanks to my friend Aisha for capturing this. And thanks to the bestie as well, Vanessa for capturing me looking over the shoulder in the same colour. Singing while I wear it like I mean it, which is really the only way to wear red. Confidently.

I am still loving this nude combo of Libra by Juvia’s Place and FU$$Y by Fenty. With this smoky eye and all the glam from head to toe, this was just an easy yes with staying power. I am also learning that this gloss by Fenty is great alone or over any colour. It goes on smooth and does not pull the lips. It has a refreshing smell that isn’t overpowering which I appreciate since I have a very sensitive nose. Another unsuspecting nude for the Holidays is called Sandstone by L’Oréal. On my lips, this nude shimmers and glides on masking just enough of my bottom lip colour so that the lips are in harmony. It’s just glam enough for the holidays while being slightly understated for those regular day-wears. I was pleasantly surprised by this drugstore lippie that I didn’t even think I would like but it’s the Nude turn-up for the holidays.

  Have you ever considered GOLD?! Yaaasssss, Love, do it! I found this gold/copper shimmer situation by The LipBar that I just had to add to the make up drawer. It looks like Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays all wrapped up in one colour. I put it on and said, “oh this is everything!” And then looked at the name of the lipstick. This is Everything by The LipBar and I should’ve known it would have been great just from the packaging. Attention to detail and presentation is always attractive just like that of food on a buffet table. This lipstick stays on in the most beautiful way. It’s a cross between a Matte and satin that lets the colour shine. It’s not glossy but its texture allows it to show off lips in the most beautiful way. And why can’t our lips look like jewels adorning our face? Well TLB made sure they can and I.👏🏽 AM.👏🏽 HERE.👏🏽 FOR. 👏🏽IT!

What about sparkle?! Do it in a gloss. What I love about a sparkly gloss, is that I can wear it alone over a nude base or on top of any colour giving that colour more pop and the sparkle more shine time. This Gold by Cheekbone Beauty has so much sparkle in it that when the gloss is gone it will still leave you shining and sparkling still. I also really love what this company stands for and is trying to do by creating healthy sustainable lip wear while giving back to Indigenous people and the environment. Win-win for me. I have it here over the remnants of Everything by The LipBar and it feels so royal in the most fun way. Just call me Queen as I wear this most beautiful combo!

Did you ever consider “not so holiday colours” for the holidays? So we know how I feel about PURPLE lips, but really have you considered purple lips for the holidays? Do It! Any shade will do. Purple is usually a cool colour so it fits right into the winter months like a hand in a glove, but it’s also great with dramatic smoky eyes or soft ones. I decided to go for a softer more pastel Purple by ColouredRaine called Bodacious. I have so much joy when I put this matte lipgloss on. I usually reserve it for the summer months because of its pop but paired with this green dress, I couldn’t resist putting it on. What a holiday must!

And of course, a natural lip with a gloss tint is always a great idea. For this, I used Milani’s Ludicrous lipgloss in She’s All That! What a name! I love getting a chance to be All that for any reason but especially during the Holiday season. Usually, there are parties, multiple dinners, and activities to attend. This year it’ll be the family and a bunch of zoom calls, but my lips will still be moisturized, hydrated, and outfitted. For anyone who can’t decide on a colour, this sheer tint in a gloss making your natural pout pucker in just the right way is a great compromise without settling for boring. She’s All That also has just a hint of sparkle without leaving the chunks behind when you are ready for the wipe off. Even when it’s all gone, your lips will thank you. 

What are your Holiday faves or go-to’s? Are you worried about what will make it through dinner or are you only concerned with having that statement lippie? Let me know some of your must-have holiday colours by following me on the gram @thelipstickblogger and tagging me your faves. Wherever you’re spending the holidays, I pray that Jesus, the reason for the season keeps you and your loved ones safe as you celebrate, however you do that this year. We made it to the end, baby! many didn’t but we did, and for that, we gratefully wear our lipsticks, glosses, and balms as we give thanks. Merry Christmas, Love and Happy Holidays! #WearItLikeYouMeanIt

Post #9- Thank You, Bourgie Cosmetique!

In the words of Ms. Jekaylyn Carr, “It’s my winning season!”

“I won something” is how my Instagram post read…

You see those tag someone contest all the time. I know a girl who won a whole vacation by doing this, so I often think “why not?” while expecting nothing in return…I really gotta work on that faith bit! I saw a company I recently started following, a local, female and Black-owned lip wear brand doing a giveaway. All I had to do was tag as many friends as I could, follow the page- already done, and like the post. Easy-peasy! on November 27th I woke up to a picture of the post below with one of my combo pics for reference! “I won something”, how many times has this happened to me?…uh never! I was über excited.

Not even a week later I hear the doorbell ring, the delivery people have taken to alerting us by double-ringing the bell lately and I was so glad for it. When I went to pick up whatever package had arrived I received not only 1 lipstick package, but 3! Now, just to be clear, I only won the one set of two lipsticks from Bourgie Cosmetique but a couple other orders I sent away for came in on the same day and I got them on sale, so win, win, win, Temeka!

As I opened them up I saw my two lippies from Bourgie Cosmetique, one from Juvia’s Place, and one from Secrets by Danika Battieste. It might as well have been candy and me the kid in the store. See below for my lip wear experience from these four beauties, all different but all capable of adding to or changing my smile.

-The first colour I got from Bourgie Cosmetique is called Manifest and it could have easily been featured in the Nude post a little while ago since it is a chalky-peachy matte satin lipstick. The texture is smooth and glides on easily. On a regular day, I would definitely use this for a light to dark ombre effect on my lips. Here I am wearing it only-Nude.

  • The second colour I received from my winnings- thank you Bourgie Cosmetique is called Walk the Walk and it is my favourite of the two. It is a cool purple gray lipstick in matte with a satin feel, so no drying here. It is the perfect Temeka-colour and it pops without taking away from anything else your face may be wearing. I can see this becoming a staple especially in the winter months.
  • Juvia’s Place got me with their packaging and I just new this lipstick would not disappoint. Now I spoke briefly about this in the Nude post, but I’ve recently discovered that I love wearing this easy to wear, glide-on lipstick with just a hint of FU$$Y by Fenty Beauty. This combination seems to compliment any makeup choices I make for the day and it keeps me moisturized while being all there, no slips, no slides. Stay tuned for more of this one, because it’s close at hand.
  • The last one I opened that beautiful day in November was recommended to me by many of my instagram followers. Thank you! This brand, Secrets by Danika Battieste was all over my timeline day after day, so I just had to try it. I chose the colour Velvet touch, because I have a thing for nsmes. Certsinly this one would be velvetty and I’m already a sucker for matte bold lips, and this one gave me bold even with this soft peachy-pink that I chose. It goes on full and leaves it just dry enough to welcome a gloss or to know it’s staying power is sure.

I didn’t just win because of the contest, even though I participated and enjoyed receiving lipsticks. (Please feel free to send me new lip-wear anyway). I won because I desired to see opportunities to win. Isn’t this the reason why we’re even wearing lipstick anyway, especially while being mostly home in a pandemic?! (Jesus, please end COVID-19 🙄). I wear lipstick because I’ve learned to celebrate my lips, and lipstick is easier than changing your pyjama bottoms for another zoom call. But whether you choose to put on pants, a skirt and or lipstick, do it because there are small victories in your day to be celebrated. Do it because any day could be your winning season too. Do it because there is still breath blowing through your lips. I’m choosing in this season of life, as we near the end of a year we didn’t see coming to win and win well. Here’s to lipwear in any form every day! Wear your lip-wear graciously and confidently, love. #WearItlikeYouMeanIt and mean it when you do!

See you on the gram! @thelipstickblogger

Post #8- Review by Request: ARBONNE

“Hey Temeka, do you think you could review some Arbonne lipsticks for your blog?”

Imagine my surprise and wonderment when I was approached by ARBONNE Consultant and friend Kalenea Johnson to review a couple lipsticks! I was elated to think that someone wanted my lip wear opinion. Now, I know that you all like hearing (or reading rather) what I might have to say, but to want my opinion? That’s kindness. I had never really tried any lip-wear made by ARBONNE, so I couldn’t wait. That being said, this post will be a little different because it will highlight the lippies I got to try instead of the goodies in the make up drawer. Please note: these goodies are now in the makeup drawer!💃🏾

I was sent the options of lipglosses and lipsticks and there were two in particular that caught my eye. The first one I chose got me with the title of the lipstick line. I love names found on the bottom of lipstick (or any make up really, but this is a lipstick blog, so let’s stick with that). It’s like the last creative element the company added for our lip-wearing pleasure. Smoothed Over Lipstick in Peony is this beautiful in-your-face-Pink. It is moisturizing with a hint of shine and true to it’s name it is smooth indeed! It goes on easy without any pull and lasts a lot longer than I initially thought it would. I decided to teach in it soon after receiving it.

While I teach, I often get hungry and need to wet my whistle while explaining the various sections of the English language to my beautiful students. I often munch on something small or drink a couple glasses of water here and there. Thus, I need the lippie of choice to last at least through the lesson, especially since we’re zooming everywhere and features online do not come across the way they do in person.

I was pleasantly surprised when Peony did wear off that it left a nice even stain across both of my lips. It’s the gift that keeps on giving. This, you’ve got to try!

My second choice was a fun cheat because it’s two in one. That’s right! I have two lip glosses in one hand. As you can see in the picture below, one side is a matte pinky mauve named Bloom and the other side is a gloss with the same name. What’s great about this one is that you can wear each side individually or pair them together. Let’s call them Matte Bloom and Glossy Bloom for now. I love options, especially when I have the option to choose both!☺️

Matte BLOOM Gloss

I found Matte Bloom to be rich in colour covering my two-toned canvas evenly the way I like, but a little drying. Not to worry though because once I added the gloss on top it added the needed moisture without stealing any of the Matte colour. Glossy Bloom is also a great moisturizing clear pinky-mauve-tinted gloss on its own. Another great option! They also come off easily with some warm water or your favourite remover. No fuss here.

Now for the best part. Mix it all up, baby! Yes, I added this Glossy Bloom to Peony and found a new ARBONNE favourite. I’d like to call her Glossy Peony and the combination of the intense colour with a hint of visible moisture has me feeling myself even in my teaching sweats and no-where-to-go-self.

Well, I pray this was enlightening and perhaps you’ll give your ARBONNE consultant (or Kalenea, @livoutloud) a call, to find your new favourite lip-wear. The catalogue they offer for lip-wear alone is a thing of beauty. So many to choose from! Thanks Kalenea and ARBONNE for letting me wear great lip-wear even indoors. No matter which colour you go with or what brand you buy, remember it’s confidence in knowing you are dressing up what was already wonderfully made. so #wearitlikeYOUmeanit and mean it when you do! 💋💄

P.s.

If there is a brand you think I should review, let me know by slipping into my DMs on the gram, @thelipstickblogger or by sending me a message here. Or maybe you don’t have your own brand, but you’d like my perspective anyway. Let me know which brand suits your fancy and we’ll see if it’s already in the make-up drawer. See you soon. muah!

Post #7 The New Nude

Nude but not the naked kind!

I’ve got a glam event to go to like a wedding or a celebratory girls night out. You know the kind, full eyelash application, a smoky eye, drama all over your face and all you need is a smooth nude to finish off the look. Not too yellow or your teeth will look like they’re crashing the party and not too dark or it’ll clash with the eye-work you just completed. Which nude is the right nude?

What is nude?

Well, according to Merriam-Webster, it is Devoid of natural or conventional covering or the appearance of nudity or having a colour that matches the wearer’s skin.

That last one hit the nail on the head! Let’s talk about what NUDE isn’t and no I’m not talking about that beach with the hairy overweight man that we shouldn’t have visited in the first place…eeewww! 😫

For as long as I can remember, nude was that peachy “flesh-tone” colour in my pencil crayon case that I was told to use if I was colouring in people during class. No one in the class was this colour but it was the colour used for White people and then somehow all representations of people whilst I was colouring. For some reason it was that way in the Cosmetics Industry as well. Nude meant wearing a colour that DID NOT translate as an “appearance of nudity” on any people of colour even if your colour was barely there. For people like me with a rich Mocha-Chocolate skin tone and yellow undertones, it meant that my lips looked ashy or dry if I decided to wear ‘nude’ and that I had to wear a brown something advertised as a brown something in order to find my nude. So let’s recap: Nude even for white people is NOT that peachy stuff that makes your lips look like they need hydration, it is  a colour that matches your natural colour to give the appearance of not wearing anything at all.

But NUDES have developed and come a long way since then, THANK GOD! For people with two-toned lips like me, this is a God-send and it makes finding a nude so much easier. Nudes are not just what matches your skin tone, but also shades in that colour spectrum that could. What a world of possibilities! See some of my discoveries from both drug store and luxurious brands below. 

First on the list was this beautiful coral brown by Juvia’s Place called Libra. It is a creamy matte that I thought may be wrong until I wore it with confidence, and isn’t confidence what we really need to wear anyway?

I decided to continue with lipsticks in the traditional sense, but make no mistake, these hippies only give the appearance of tradition. I applied Hot Cocoa by Bobbi Brown. This satin finish is one of my faves and I’m sad that it’s almost at its end. It is moisturizing and has a finish that is more of a shine than that greasy look one might obtain after biting into fried chicken.

This next one is the one I was really scared about. I have flashbacks of my school-age years every time I pick it up. But what is great to remember is that your lips are YOUR lips, so mix and match and see what happens. This next combo is a mix of L’Oréal’s Utmost Taupe in a matte finish on top of Bobbi Brown’s Hot Cocoa. The slight ombré effect makes the taupe much more attractive and because it’s lighter in colour whist being heavier in texture, I get my ombre look to last a little longer than it would have in just a satin finish.

This next one is very similar to the last two and yet seems to be different. L’Oréal created a colour in a satin finish called Toasted Almond. I love this colour for a quick and easy finish to a subtle look or to add to the smoky eye I’m playing with here. It is more of an Orange-Peachy shade, but it’s a shade I don’t mind reapplying and it looks great with my Summer glow as well as with my Winter fade.

This next one surprised me when it joined the drawer and me a few weeks ago. When the sun was still providing us here in Canada with warm rays and not just daylight indicators, I bought Somebody to Love by NARS. This is a liquid lipstick that is also mask-proof-take that pandemic! Instead of having to carry the lipstick and hope for a chance to apply before that zoom call, you can just appear ready. In the store, this was a match for my top lip, but as I tried it in different lighting I began to see the depth of the plum undertones in this brown. This one goes on easy and is not heavy nor does it crack the lips because it isn’t too drying even as it dries. This nude is a winner for me.

Lipli by NYX Lingerie is the closest match I have ever seen to my top lip. Now I told you in Post #1 that I have two-toned lips, well usually I’m just trying to find something that will make both lips agree on a look for the day, but I don’t usually find a match.It almost looks like my lips could disappear or be totally naked while being fully covered. This one also feels velvety. Win-win for me!

Did you know that pink is a nude?! It is on somebody and it is for my bottom lip. I get to have fun with this one because it’s kind of a cheat. Because I know that certain pinks are a match with my bottom lip, they get a pass as my nude. Which lippies help you cheat successfully? I love this one my Paba Cosmetics called Pout. And rightfully so!

Now I could not leave out the Superstay Matte Ink collection by Maybelline. For a few years now, these three colours have been my go-to teacher-appropriate-nudes. Just for the record, I am an appropriate teacher in any shade, thank you very much! As mentioned in previous posts, I have a lot of this collection because it proved itself in staying power and pigments. This will always have even coverage and will blend in or stand out in any look. The colours are Amazonian, a beautiful brown, Seductress, one I usually use to blend for ombre effects in the centre of my lips with either of these shades, and lastly, Fighter. Fighter is a burnt orange-brown that pops while being nude.

Last, but certainly, not least is Malt by Anastasia. This liquid lipstick is bold while being nude. There goes that confidence thing again. It calmly yet sure-footedly stands out without stealing the show. It is soft and has quite a bit of staying power. I couldn’t have picked a better way to end this post and I also can’t believe these were just some of the nudes in my lipstick drawer. Yes, I have more and I’m not ashamed, ha!

Well, how do you wear your not-so-naked nude? Let me know by tagging me on Instagram @thelipstickblogger I’d love to learn from you too! Whatever you wear, whether really in the nude or just the lip wear kind, #wearitlikeyoumeanit my love! Stay safe out there!

Post #6- I See Red!

Remember when red was the sinful colour and the only lipstick colour you could see everywhere at the same time?

One evening I was out for dinner with two of my girlfriends and red lipstick came up in conversation. One friend had just found out that she could wear a red lip any time of day with very little anywhere else on her face and was loving the revelation. My other friend, who is a little more reserved, thought that she didn’t need red and it was too bright. I found it my duty then as I do now to let her know that not all red is the same, nor is all lip wear created equal. Red can be transparent, glossy, bright, subtle, outrageous, fun, quirky, even downright naughty. But…

Red is more than just red and it took a while for me to adjust to the goodness of a confident red lip for any moment, not just for that night out in the little black dress! Red isn’t just that shade of danger or seduction, for me, it’s a celebration! The right red is important for the look you’re going for, your skin tone, and even your teeth colour. Undertones, baby! Orange, pink, and blue undertones will change the tone of your red! Which red are you wearing? 

Let’s take a look at the different kids of reds available in both drugstore and luxurious retail experiences found in my lipstick drawer.

My first real red was a NARS jumbo lip pencil called Cruella I bought a few years ago and still have. It was the first time I experienced matte lipstick gliding on like velvet! It had a blue undertone which made the red appear deeper and cooler in tone and helped my teeth look whiter. This lip was also great under a gloss or lip stain.

I received a sample size of a NARS lip stain that was a buildable red. This red was deceptive and I used it on top of my first Red mentioned here. It seemed to fill my lips with colour but as it dried it became darker giving the lips that blood colour as seen in the first picture on the left below. But in the rest of the pictures, it’s brighter as I only added a light amount to the Jumbo Lip Pencil. Either way, I’m game!

My third is one of my favourite reds ever and I’ll probably mention a 3B here since they are made by the same company. Pioneer and Dancer by Superstay Matte Ink are absolutely phenomenal colours. Pioneer has a blue undertone and Dancer has orange undertones and makes no joke about staying onto your lips all day and night if you let it.

Pioneer from SuperStay Matte Ink by Maybelline

A recent find of mine is this deep almost want to be burgundy Red by Milani’s Satin Matte liquid lipstick line called Elegant. It looks great while it’s wet but settles into your lips and dries without pulling all the while giving you lips you can still smack together knowing that the coverage of colour is still present, It’s a win for me. I found this one at the drugstore and I couldn’t be happier. This one also looks great on a Zoom call. (see it below wet and dry)

As you can probably tell, I love a solid matte lip, but I was recently blessed with a red by Bobbi Brown as a shiny lipgloss. Now, I have a confession to make. I was that girl in the 6th grade wearing that shiny oily roll-on lipgloss thing and if the teacher or the lesson were boring, I would sit there rolling it on over and over again. We had no devices or social media with which to fiddle in class, but by the end of the lesson I looked like I had kissed all of the fried chicken in the bucket and no one said a word, because it was what was popular in 6th grade. As I got older, I leaned into coloured glosses, also very oily in texture. Shine is not oil People! but let’s save that for another post. As I matured and came into knowledge about lipstick, I left the gloss behind because I was scarred by the pictures I had as proof of my oily lip failures and the stains left to my clothing and the memory of all of the sticky-ness. Then came this beautiful sample of “Red the News” in the Luxe Liquid Lip High Shine line by Bobbi Brown. It was absolutely fabulous and had me believing in shiny glosses again. It had full coverage and a yellow-blue undertone which I usually try to stay away from because of my own yellow undertones in my skin, but the colour was full and had really good staying power. I was impressed, to say the least. 

Some honourable mentions that I pull from the lipstick drawer every now and again are listed below. They are also fabulous but have not made it to pictures yet.

  1. Liquorice by Bite beauty if you want your red to be healthy and full of nutrients, this deep blood burgundy satin red is perfect for you.
  2. Guinevere by PatMcGrath in her MatteTrance lipstick line don’t play! This pout screams confidence and feels like decadence. Come on, Somebody!
  3. Elson also by Pat McGrath (see pictured at the top of the post)

Wherever you wear your red, wear it confidently. Wear it like you mean it. Red looks good on you boo, no matter your personal shade. 

💄P.s.

Feel free to tag me on IG @thelipstickblogger and let me know what your go-to reds are. Don’t forget to use the hashtag #wearitlikeyoumeanit. I’m so excited about adding to the Red part of my lipstick drawer. Are you? I also know there are some local and POC owned as well as Black Owned companies making some of the most gorgeous Reds out there. I can’t wait to try them all! 💋

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