Posts Tagged ‘pigments’

Are counterfeit cosmetics safe?

December 27th, 2013

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Tatyana says… I have been sent two fake makeup palettes that are meant to be Urban Decay, and these fakes are really ubiquitous. As I am a scientist as well, I did notice fairly quickly a few ways to identify fakes besides the aesthetics and scripts with lot numbers. One of my fakes did have an obvious ‘Beauty with ay edge’ typo on the box and insert. Anyway, I love makeup, and I love the hyper-pigmented, super saturated colour that Urban Decay often employs. I do realise some of the cost of cosmetics is in the development and quality control of the product, but is there any significant difference in the quality of the pigments? I do know that the costs of pigments for fine arts painting can be significantly different, and I have always assumed that is due to the nature of the pigment, for example, yellow ochre, cheap, some of the bright, lime greens (I can’t remember the name right now, something like phallocyanate green), expensive. As well, some young women just think it is great to be able to get cheap fake cosmetics, they don’t think there is an issue. Can you elaborate on some of the issues with fakes please? As well, is there any distinction between fake cosmetics and what a lot of them are calling ‘cosmetics from Hong Kong’.

The Beauty Brains respond:

In the US (and many other countries) pigments are certified to ensure that they don’t contain any dangerous contaminants. This requires a more elaborate process of manufacturing and record keeping but it does ensure that colorants are safe. Some counterfeit products made outside of the US (or other regulated countries) have been found to contain pigments with high levels of lead, for example. While trace levels of lead are common (and not very dangerous) high levels of lead does pose a problem. So it’s possible that some unscrupulous companies are selling these cheap knock-offs rather than using pigments that have been properly quality control checked.

From what I understand, a number of these counterfeit products come from China so I assume that the term “cosmetics from Hong Kong” is just another way to refer to such fakes. (Of course that is not to say that ALL fakes come from China or that every Chinese product is fake.)

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Runway Beauty: Luminous Skin at Mara Hoffman S/S 2014

September 11th, 2013

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At Mara Hoffman Spring/Summer 2014, the beauty look was all about luminous, sun-kissed skin and a fun nail look.

Mara Hoffman S/S 2014 runway beauty
Working for Maybelline New York, makeup artist Alice Lane was inspired about the idea behind the designer’s collection radiating an inner glow from the inside out.

Models skin’ were first evened out with Fit Me! Foundation, applied liberally with a brush, then warmed up with a shade darker than their natural skin tone. For a sun-kissed, bronzed effect without using bronzer, Dream Bouncy Blush in Candy Coral was applied high on the cheeks then pulled down, and applied to the forehead, nose and other areas where the sun would hit the face.

The eyes were given a soft, luminous wash of color with Color Tattoo Pure Pigments in Buff & Tuff on the lid and Color Tattoo Pure Pigments in Pink Rebel along the lower lash line.

The lips were painted with the new Color Elixir that I showed you on my Instagram in Celestial Coral with a touch of Color Tattoo Pure Pigments in Buff & Tuff on the cupid’s bow.

Finally, manicurist Honey applied Color Show in Born With It as a base, then added in delicate stripes fanning out from the base of the nail using a brush with Color Show in Orange Fix.

Mara Hoffman S/S 2014 nail look

Mara Hoffman S/S 2014 backstage makeup by Maybelline
Mara Hoffman S/S 2014 facechart by Maybelline

Images: Courtesy of Maybelline.

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Makeup Tutorial: How To Foil Eyeshadow

April 22nd, 2013

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Looking for a way to REALLY make your eye makeup pop and last? Try foiling, a popular technique that involves applying eyeshadow wet to create a shiny, foil-like effect.

How To Foil Eyeshadow makeup tutorial

Applying pigments dry vs wet with mixing medium

Foiling How To
Before you foil, check to see if your eyeshadow can be used wet. Foiling a shadow that cannot be used wet will ruin its texture and leave behind a hard spot. All pigments and loose eyeshadows can be used wet.

Step 1. Add a drop or two of mixing medium to your brush. I am a huge fan of MAC Water-based Mixing Medium but water, saline eye drops or even a makeup setting spray will work just as great. Make sure your brush is damp – not soaking wet.

Step 2. Dip the brush directly into the eyeshadow. If you are using a pigment or loose eyeshadow, pick up product that is stuck onto the inside of the lid to avoid getting too much product.

Step 3. Tap off excess and apply directly onto the eyes in a patting motion. Repeat this step until you have achieved the intensity you want.

Step 4. Once the color has dried off completely, blend off the edges. Feel free to add in other colors as desired.

Extra Tips On Foiling
* Don’t own any pigments or shadows that can be used wet? Just wet the brush after you have dipped it into the shadow.

* Foiling works under and over dry shadows. In the look above, I applied MAC Blonde’s Gold Pigment wet on the lid then blended MAC Sweet Sienna Pigment dry on the outer corner and up the crease before using MAC Deep Blue Green Pigment wet as a liner.

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What is the first beauty brand you remember using?

June 21st, 2011

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What is the first beauty brand you remember using? Do you have good memories of it? Bad?

MAC made me fall in love with makeup — it was MAC pigments (which could have very well been fake MAC pigments, actually, given I bought them off of eBay), and it was pretty much a downward spiral from there.

Thanks to Arian for today’s question!

Got a question idea? Submit yours here.

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Spring 2011 Beauty Trend Report: Neon Lips

January 15th, 2011

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With lips drenched in eye-popping neon shades of orange and fuchsia on the runways of Jil Sander, Fendi, Marni, Diane von Furstenberg and more, the bright lip look has been taken to a whole new level this spring.To achieve such strong impact, makeup artists seeked help from pigments and eyeshadows. At Diane von Furstenberg and Jil Sander, pigments were applied on top of lip pencil and mixed with lip color. At Marni, an opaque cream was used while eyeshadows covered the corners of the mouth.To translate the look from runway …

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