If That’s What You Wanna Do: Makeup Inspired by the 1975’s Love Me

“Another post about the 1975?” you’re probably groaning. I know, it’s been weeks since their album came out and I’ve all ready mentioned them so many times…but the moment I saw the video for Love Me back in October, I knew I needed to play with their look.

Just Keep Lookin'

The video, directed by Diane Martel, featured the band partying with a horde of cardboard celebrities, but let’s face it: the real star of the show was Matty Healy’s makeup, as done by the incredibly artistic Jeffrey Baum. Powder blue and neon pink is a very particular colour combo, and definitely serves as a throwback to the kind of retro 80’s glamour the band is channeling, but Baum keeps it from looking dated by keeping lips clean and natural, tying it all together with dashes of dayglo liner.

Bright Liner in Love Me

Considering that “Serendipity” blue is one of Pantone‘s dual Colours of the Year, I decided to bust out my new Sephora Pantone Universe lipstick and do some role reversal. You’ve seen the blue eye pink lip combo a thousand times, but I’m always interested in paths less traveled. And considering the song’s New Wave influences, I thought it was appropriate to play with some heavy contouring and bright blush.

"Love Me" Spinoff Look

I used Sugarpill‘s Dollipop, Urban Decay‘s Savage, Bones, Alien, Truth, and Too Faced‘s Your Love is King to create a bold pink eye and blend it out into my contour, a la some of my New Romantic image idols. Then, using Dior‘s Dior Addict Fluid Shadow in Magnetic, I traced a silver line under my waterline before creating a second line in black liquid liner–everyone has their favourites, but mine is Urban Decay‘s Perversion. Extending the line beyond my natural eye on both sides, I let the inside corner fall downwards while the outside corner continued up.

"Love Me" Spinoff Look

Rather than creating a full line along my upper lash line, I joined the lower line with a wing on top and piled on the black mascara. Leaving a slight gap between the upper and lower lines creates an even larger-looking eye–something between a doll and a wild animal, two things everyone aspires to of course.

"Love Me" Spinoff Look

I filled in my brows as usual, and finished the look off with the fabulously blue Serendipity lipstick from Sephora’s Pantone Universe collection. For such a light colour, Serendipity goes on opaque with the first stroke, so application was painstaking–moreso because the bullet itself is a rather strange shape and doesn’t lend itself well to drawing lines or creating shapes. If you’re a dedicated brush-user or have a magic supply of blue lipliner, this probably won’t bother you. Personally, I think this shade is worth a little time and effort–it’s the perfect counterpart to the classic (cliché?) powder blue shadow.

"Love Me" Spinoff Look

While I love the clean neon liner seen on the video’s models, I felt like taking it back–Love Me via ’81 if it was done by Boy George. Naturally, this isn’t a look for some light afternoon shopping or a family dinner. Luckily for me, there’s never a lack of good dance parties in town, and with a New Order show the same night, I was in good company.

The next time you see an artist or model in a video you like, take a look at their makeup. I challenge you to create something from it, to turn it into something you identify with or feel strongly for. Not only does it inspire you to break out of your daily beauty routine, it also creates a unique place for you within the music. You strengthen your relationship not only with the song itself, but also with yourself–it really is amazing how far a little makeup can push the boundaries of our identities.


Bobbi Brown’s Pretty Powerful, a book review

Sometimes when you’ve made up your mind to do something, the universe will find ways of providing you with the tools you need. In this case, my resolution to develop signatures received some help in the form of a gift: Bobbi Brown’s latest book, Pretty Powerful.

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While I do love Bobbi Brown’s foundations and concealers, her makeup line is only a fraction of what she has to offer. She’s an industry veteran, still applying makeup at runway shows each year at New York Fashion Week, working magazine cover shoots and charity events while managing a company and a household. To young beauty professionals, she’s a shining example of what we can accomplish when we’re driven and passionate. Along the way, she’s compiled much of her experience and wisdom in books for everyone from teenagers beginning to experiment in beauty to professionals who have all ready begun to work in the industry.

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When I said that I want to work on developing signatures this year, I never thought that I would come home the next day to find a valuable tool on my dining room table. Pretty Powerful is not your typical makeup book: there are plenty of how-to volumes filled with color-by-number face formulas, but Bobbi approaches it from her own place, stressing individual beauty over total perfection. Each time I read one of Bobbi’s books, I’m truly taken by her philosophy that beauty is not a standard, it’s an individualized trait that each and every woman in the world possesses. Makeup exists merely to enhance it. Pretty Powerful is organized by profiles–not beauty profiles, per se, but personality profiles. The task presented to you as the reader is not to decide which of your physical features to emphasize or what colours you look nice in, it’s simply to decide how you feel most comfortable. 

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Each chapter–Pretty Natural, Radiant, Strong, Classic, Authentic, and Bold–begins with a note from Bobbi about how the chapter applies to to her, therefore reminding you that there is plenty of cross-over between profiles. You might identify as Pretty Natural, but adopting traits from the Pretty Radiant or Pretty Authentic chapters could benefit not only your makeup routine but also your lifestyle. Each one contains face charts for day and night with suggestions for colours, finishes, and textures to experiment with as well as numerous before-and-after pictures of women who underwent Bobbi’s Pretty Powerful transformations. The captions beneath each photo offer some info on how the look was created–sometimes the complete opposite the face charts, since even within general types Bobbi respects each model’s individual preferences–as well as notes about what the ladies themselves think make them beautiful. It’s inspiring and wonderful to see so many women embracing traits that might have been rejected under traditional beauty ideals.

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Additionally, each chapter features a celebrity or woman of note who is not only transformed by Bobbi’s makeup team but also contributes a short essay about what they find beautiful, and what led them to their place in life. Some write about childhood notions of what was or was not beautiful–their freckles, their dark eyes, their uncontrollably curly hair–some talk about the people in their lives that encouraged them to be who they are and helped them see what beauty really was. It forces you to examine your own ideals and experiences in order to transform your routine. Whether you’re stuck in a “beauty rut,” as Bobbi discusses at several points during the book, or just looking to experiment with your look, this book includes plenty of points to ponder.

Going through the articles and face charts, it’s impossible not to envision yourself in each category. Some simply don’t fit (I could never call myself “Natural”) and others might seem to apply in bits and pieces (I’ve definitely gone through both “Radiant” and “Classic” periods), but invariably one category will seem most you. Perhaps predictably, most of my cosmetic habits fell under Pretty Bold–my penchant for colour and experimentation, my confident approach to self-expression through cosmetics. While labeling often causes constriction, Bobbi uses each category to encourage readers to explore what makes them feel most beautiful, whether its looking fresh-faced and dewy or wearing bold, neon lipsticks.

Pretty Powerful can be purchased on Amazon, at Barnes & Noble, or at independent booksellers. All images above from Barnes & Noble.

Cosmetics, Day in Pictures

Metamorphosis 74.0 – the Makeup Show NYC: the Day in Pictures

The Makeup Show NYC took place over two days at the Metropolitan Pavilion on West 18th street, but I only managed to get there on Monday, May 16th. I was told if you make only one makeup trade show in a year, it should be the Makeup Show–I have to say, I did enjoy it immensely. As a pro-only event, proof of profession was required at the door and everyone inside was 100% serious about their makeup. There were fabulous demos and speakers, though I only caught bits and pieces of them, and an amazing exhibitor floor. Below are some of the photos I snapped during my stay:


Smashbox exhibits right inside the door

Unfortunately, they were sold out of the only product I was really interested in–their oh-so-amazing lipstains

Inglot was a much more pleasant shopping experience at this show!

Everyone building their Inglot palettes…

I have a newfound desire to try my hand at airbrush makeup…

I did get myself a Temptu Pro card so I can still get the discount price without buying the show bundle. I all ready have an airbrush, just have to check my specs…

Make Up Forever’s AMAZING exhibit

Model painted by Make Up Forever artists. Gotta say, I was loving those shorts!

Aqua Miami was clearly the biggest attraction at Make Up Forever. The liners were on show special, 5 for $58

NARS. I was really disappointed that they weren’t selling anything–I LOVED the new lip pencil for fall.


Stila products –you can see one of the “Stila Boys” in the background. They stood outside the exhibit in ripped shirts and tight jeans with tons and tons of eyeliner smeared all over them. Reminded me of Twilight vampires…

I don’t remember what company was working on this model…

OCC –on the table you can see their new OCC Tint, which I snagged at the show and think I’m in love with…

More OCC. Look at that organizer FULL of Lip Tars…!

Yves Saint-Laurant

YSL Summer Collection…I was a little confused by their target audience. They had bright lip and cheek colours, but warm bronze and terra-cotta shadows.


More MAC Pro. It drew quite a crowd, though I think everyone was just grabbed Pro Card apps

Model being painted by Kryolan, favourite brand of 16-year-old-Luna. Gotta love the Klimt-inspired poster in the background

Miss Alcone looked really familiar. I really wish I knew her name…

Love you to the Moon and Back,

Luna Valentine

Cosmetics, Love Lists, Monthly Picks

Metamorphosis 50.0 – March Monthly Picks!

I decided a few weeks ago that I wanted to do a sort of product feature. Weekly seemed kind of ridiculous, and seasonal seemed too infrequent, so monthly sounds good. I’ve got thirty-odd days to think up new features, and that’s perfect.

This month, my picks are all products I got in March. I’m not sure if that will always be the case, but this month it certainly is. When I get new products, I tend to test out every aspect of their usage especially if I’m reviewing them so I get really attached to a lot of products.

My first pick is Wylde Ivy‘s Silken Body Oil in Little Shop in Salem. It’s like a nifty little moisturizing perfume that goes on smooth, soaks in quickly, and leaves you smelling wonderful all day. The oil itself is made from a combination of Coconut and Jojoba oils with addition oils from various fruit seeds. I particularly like it in this scent because it’s a light incense-y blend that’s sweet and a little dusty and layers perfectly will all sorts of other fragrances. Plus, it doesn’t give me (or anyone else around me) a headache after too long, as most fragrances often do.

Zoya Nail Polish in Dannii is a soft pink-purple with an amazing multi-coloured sparkle. I’m always amazed by the depth of colour in Zoya polishes, which is why they’re my favourite hands-down. This particular colour is great for spring–it reminds me of newly-budding flowers.

For some reason, I was all about the metallic eyes this month. Meow Cosmetics‘ Heiroglyph from the Egyptian Treasures Collection was definitely one of my go-to shadows. It’s described on-site as “metallic chartreuse with verdigris overtones and metallic gold undertones,” but I see it as a darkened, antiqued gold.

You’ve seen how beautiful Brazen‘s Cherry Bomb lip gloss is. If you haven’t, go read my review right now. It’s richly pigmented but still layerable, it’s smooth and creamy, and it stays put for hours. I haven’t seen this listed in the shop yet (which is live again after a brief hiatus!), but the owner is always more than happy to do custom listings if something you want is “out of stock.”

I’ve never been a blush girl, but lately I seem to be obsessed! The more unusual, the more shimmery, pigmented, sparkling, or complex the colour, the more I love it. Meow Cosmetics’ PINK, Inc blushes are really gorgeous. They apply like a dream, they’re incredibly blendable, and they have just the barest hint of shimmer that really bring them to life. My favourite is definitely Slip. On site, it’s described as “bright warm coral PINK with a slight refreshing twist of citrus peach,” but it definitely reads as a light coral-y peach. I ordered it in the 10g size, though I sort of feel like I should have gotten the larger jar.

–and there you have it! Five items I fell absolutely head-over-heels for this month. Also, all $10USD or less.

What have you been loving this month? Products, foods, music, websites, events?

Love you to the Moon and Back,

Luna Valentine