Weekly Cheap Secret:

I am a fan of Black Radiance lip products. They come in a great range of color and have lots of different formulas from matte, full-coverage lipstick to sheer glosses. And they are really, really cheap. I love the shade #5064 Cleopatra Red in The Indelibly Radiant formula. This formula is glossy, packs pigment, and is pretty long-wearing, especially for a glossy formula. This color looks even better on me the more it wears off. It can mimic a berry kissed lip stain and it really reminds me alot of Bobbi Brown’s 2009 Nautical color collection. And I have a Cleopatra complex so I couldn’t find a name that I love more.  Anyways, below is a pic of me wearing this shade. Please ignore me (too humid to wear foundation that day and flashes are rude, I’m not too vain, right?) and just look at the amazing shade. The first picture is of me wearing it straight from the tube. It’s a bit Barbie pink with lots of shimmer. I’ll wear it heavy like this with a pairing of Urban Decay glitter liquid eyeliner or a swipe or navy mascara with nude eyes. The second is it blotted and worn for about an hour. It is a little more “fresh”. It shows a bit of my natural lip color. It looks amazing just paired with a stroke of liquid liner for a cat-eye effect or really with nude shadows and a cheekstain. It looks “healthy” and not overly made up.

The color in the tube looks like a deep raspberry with tons of gold shimmer. It has a slight fruit fragrance. I got my tube for less than $2.50 at Wal-Mart. You can not beat that price for this product. The tube is slim and gold toned. It looks way more expensive that what it is. It is available at most drugstores and super stores like Wal-Mart and K-Mart.

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Have a thing for sailor pants and deep, dark navy? I do. I always fall for that hokey almost costumey nautical look for summer. It just looks cute and quite pin-up with a bit of prep. I try not to dress like it anymore, since there are actual sailors in town and their uniforms are much cuter than my wardrobe. Anyways, Bobbi Brown’s Nautical Collection is that look that I always pull out every late spring. I love a “fresh” and a no-fuss glow.

This collection was inspired by a trip to Normandy. There she was inspired, quite frankly,  by the local’s wind and sunburned faces. So, she created a “sheer” collection. Who knew chapped skin could be so beautiful?

I really like this collection for summer. But, I am going through a big lip and cheekstain phase right now. It is just crisp and Bobbi Brown says it best in her video featured on her webiste: forgiving. (Watch it if you want.) This look really does work for most people. I really think the model’s look featured above does the collection no justice. She looks gross and creepy. The eyes are much too much for a natural, sea-side inspired look.

Cheeks: There is a Sheer Color Cheek Tint in 6 shades ranging from flushed Blackberry to warm Coral. (Model is wearing Lilac). These are super sheer and of the swivel variety. I like it. It retails for $22. Don’t be fooled, you can use these on your lips as well. On cheeks, pair with a powder blush for long wear.

Eyes: Perfectly Defined Mascara is the mascara for this look. I haven’t tried it. I can’t comment but I usually dislike comb wands. It goes for $22. Eye makeup isn’t specified but I’m sure it is Eye Shadow in Ivory and Navy and Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner in Graphite Shimmer Ink. I think a swipe of gel eyeliner would of been enough for this look…

Lips: There is the Sheer Color Lip Gloss in four shades. These are so pretty. They are bold pigments in a super sheer formula that ranges from delicate pink to hot pink. It makes the pout look so healthy. Colors include: Cabana Coral, Marina Pink, Popsicle, and Sailor. Marina Pink is my favorite, even though I like them all. These go for $20 and are limited edition.

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The model’s look doesn’t look so great and she looks like she has a bit of a zombie complexion but I must say that the actual products are quite luxurious. They are beautiful and works of art. They are housed in lovely black Armani cases. The color scheme is mainly bronze and teal, a very popular combo it seems every summer.

EYES: I am in love with the Mediterranean Eyeshadow Palette. I would be. It is the most expensive item in the collection ($85). It contains four lovely powder shadows ranging from icy turquoise to shimmering sands. It also contains a bronzer powder. It is just a pretty kit. I occasionally fall for stupid products and I can’t exclude my fascination with The Sparkling Bronze Mascara Topcoat. It is a useless product but it sure is glamorous  and does what the name says. I can’t justify purchasing it at $26 😦  Two Smooth Silk Eye Pencils are featured in nice stone colors of jade and lapis lazuli. These go for $26. Maestro Mascara and Eyebrow Pencils have been relaunched. These go for $26.

LIPS: I love the Lip Wax which is a sheer, buildable bronzey “blush” for lips. It retails for $26. There are  Lip Shimmer lip glosses in shimmery sheer shades of bronze, nude, and blackberry. These go for $26 as well.

FACE & BODY: There is a Sienna Minerals Bronzing Palette. It contains a lovley mix match of earthy mineral shades of sienna, bronze, and ochre. It goes for $65. There is also a Sheer Bronzer in a deep shade that retails for $48. Body tints are back. Armani has a Bronze Mania Body Tints Bronzer which is a gel body bronzer. It goes for $75.

Overall, the collection contains a few super luxurious items. The colors are ho-hum and predictable: bronze and teal. I don’t have a problem with that, those colors are flattering on me. However, dark lips are a part of the collection and I love that. Sheer blackberry glosses really work in summer. I know I go to those in the late summer since that is when berries come out anyways.

I feel that this color is such a huge seller because it is so dark in the tube. Women want to feel daring and bold. They want to feel like they would actually wear a dark lipstick even though they most likely wouldn’t. Clinique’s Almost Lipstick in Black Honey is that middle of the road shade. It looks dark and daring but it is really pretty sheer and can be worn anywhere. It comes in a slender and sleek tube. The formula is not a lipstick and not a gloss. Well, so it claims. In my eyes it is a sheer and somewhat sticky and not as long wearing lipstick or a non-sticky and  long-wearing lip gloss! The color is a beautiful deep wine “stain”. It looks fresh and it is truly seasonless. It really adjusts to most skintones. It can look a bit more berry than wine. It plays with your skin’s undertones. It has worked with every color that I have ever dyed my hair. It retails $14. I am never without a tube. I love the way it feels and I love the flawless, everyday shade.


I have a thing for dark lipstick. It is a bit tricky and intimidating but that is why I love it. It’s dramatic. I would like to say that I wear it during the cooler months but to be honest, I like to be taboo and sport it in the warmer months as well. I love a deep, dark, berry stained pout. I love to feel vampy like Theda Bara’s image. I like to feel a bit “runway”. And frankly, I am a closet goth. This is my way of saying I’m OK with the cruel, cruel world.

Dark lipsticks and lip colors are so tricky because of skintone. However, I think that anybody can get away with it if you possess enough attitude. I don’t care if you are dark with gold undertones or ghostly pale with a visible vein road map. It works. It just takes some playing around and lots of confidence. Dark lips create a “harsh” look and you must be able to deal. It does show more imperfections. Lips must be smooth and healthy. Dark lipsticks will cling to dry spots resulting in an unattractive splotchy look. So keep lips moisturized. It is good for them anyways. I’m not going to create any other rules with the rest of the makeup when you wear darks. I like it with a perfectly matte face, sheer nude eyes with or without mascara. I like it with kohl rimmed eyes like Miss Bara’s. I like it with dewey cheeks or matte cheeks. It just doesn’t matter. Just make sure lips are moisturized.

For the Ballsy: I’m talking deep, dark, and dramatic. These colors are rarely for the meek. These are the colors for maximum drama. I’m talking you would wear black lipstick. None of this YSL glamour black gloss. I’m talking something like NYX Lipstick in Penelope, a rich angsty shock your Christian mother black. It retails for $3.50 so that you will even have enough money left to purchase black nail polish and a pentagram necklace 🙂 from Hot Topic. Lips need to be smooth. Coat this stuff on, a lip primer does help from keeping this stuff smooth. NYX also has a wonderful deep burgundy called Almost Black. It has a bit more depth than the straight up black stuff. I also like Egg Plant for a dark purple look. All retail for $3.50. MAC has a nice Lipstick in Cyber which is a black purple with a satin finish. It is a bit hard to work with because it has too much “slip”. It retails for $14. Make Up For Ever has a lovely glimmery navy lipstick in Pearly Blue Black and it retails for $19. I also like their Blueberry which is a deep berry. Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Black Cherry is a deep blood wine lipstick with a bit of sheen. It retails for $7.99.

For the Closet Goth: For a deep lip with a bit of color, try YSL Rouge Volupte Silky Sensual Lipstick in Forbidden Burgundy, a rich deep berry. Plus, the packaging will make you feel like a queen. As it should with its $34 price tag. One of my favorites is MAC Viva Glam III which is a matte deep plum. It is dark but it looks “classic” and not a bit like a purple crushed velvet cape. It retails for $14. Another one that is nice is the new Revlon Matte Collection Lipstick in Wine Not. It is a deep, classic matte wine that retails for $7.99. Max Factor Lipfinity 3D Maxwear Lipcolor in Violet Vamp is a nice medium wine with a purple shimmer topcoat that retails for $8.99 (no longer available in the US). Lipstick Queen Wine Sinner Lipstick is one of my favorite blackberry wine shades. It retails for $18. Also I love Chanel Creme Lipstick in Vamp which retails for $28.

For the Wusses: Go for something dark but really sheer. It makes you feel edgy without getting strange stares from your co-workers. I like Urban Decay Apocalypse which is a sheer blackberry in killer packaging. It has a soft vanilla fragrance and retails for $22. One of the best for this category is Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey. It’s so popular for its edge but wearable factor. It feels great on the lips and retails for $14. Black Radiance has a sheer deep-red  brown Radiant Lip Gloss in Mocha Madness. It retails for $2.99 and looks great over other colors to “deepen” them. A lip stain is always a way to get color without harshness. Try something like Urban Decay Lip Envy in Greedy which retails for $17. Lipstick Queen Big Bang Theory Lip Gloss in Black Hole is a lovely deep wine shimmer. It is buildable for more or less drama. It retails for $20. Or for the daring, wouldn’t you love to bust out a black lipstick during a board meeting or something? Try Lipstick Queen Black Tie Optional Lipstick for $18. It is super sheer, and yes black. It just adds a tiny bit of darkness.

Maybe it is because I am a closet goth. But, I love the cool toned grapey purple lip look. I love a matte purple with really minimal eye makeup. I love the blue-ish tinted lip whitening sheer violet lip glosses with loud pink eyes. I love a purple hued lip stain with warm, coral eyes. I love it all. But, seriously, this is a difficult shade to wear and a difficult shade to find. It is so frustrating. So that is why I am sharing what I have found with you.

Lipstick: I love a purple lipstick look with minimal eye makeup. That bare even, mascara less look, if the purple is deep enough. I also like it in an 80’s way if the eyes are done a nice, light baby pink with a medium toned purple lip. I have even mixed an almost white purple lipstick for myself to wear with dark, dark eyes. I looked a bit dead but hey, I’ll try anything in the name of fashion. I find that when I find a purple I like, I better buy it because chances are it won’t be around long. Rimmel made an amazing one. It was truly deep and purple but it was amazing because it had lots of silver shimmer. I bought like 10 tubes, which was good because I have never seen it since. It was like I purchased what all the company had. Dior used to have an amazing one too, but it is no more. Even MAC is lacking in this area. However, MAC has two deeper ones that I like. Cyber is a lovely almost black purple but it is very difficult to work with. It is a satin finish which is stupid. It is very difficult to keep uniformed even with foundation on the lips. It wants to gather in certain areas. Your lips have to be flawless and baby bottom soft for it to wear evenly too. But man, once you get it to work it looks amazing. I also like Rebel which is a more on the berry side or purple. It looks nice with that nude eye makeup look. NYX has a pretty good purple selection. They have in their Black Label the shade Seductive which is a medium purple. They have a super shimmery shade in the Diamond Sparkle Lipstick, Sparkling Orchid. This one is a bit to berry pink on me but if you put a black gloss over it, it looks amazing. In their classic formula they have a few nice shades: Orpheus which is a muted grape, Pandora which is a flashy magenta violet, and Iced Lavender which is a super pale and shimmery purple that looks great over other shades. NYX has a great Lipstick Pencil in Vixen which is a deep, dark and gothic purple. Manic Panic has a few goth friendly shades in Black Rose which is a deep, deep purple berry matte and Tramp which is a medium purple matte. Since these are matte, the lips must be very smooth. They have a beautiful pearly purple in Plum Passion. Black Radiance has two nice Perfect Tone Lipsticks in Go Girl Grape which is a grape Kool-Aid and Majesty which is more of a berry kissed plum. Sometimes Sephora brand gets nice pure purple shades. Currently they have Lip Attitue Star in Audaciaous Violet and Plum Vertigo (what is so glam about vertigo anyways?) Victoria’s Secret has an easy to wear pink purple in their Perfect Lipstick in Stiletto. I call it the “work” purple.

Lip Gloss: MAC has a Lipgelee in Moistly which really isn’t much of a purple, but more of a berry. It is very sheer and looks nice with rust eye makeup. NYX has a Sheer Gloss in Lavender Note which is a pale lavender shimmer. It wears nicely over pinks. There are two nice NYX Mega Shine Lip Gloss in Purple Rain a lovely pure purple and Orchid which is another one of those berry, fuchsia hybrids. There is a NYX Sheer Tube Lip Gloss in Lilac which reminds me of MAC’s Moistly. Black Radiance has a nice sheer lipstick in Vogue Vixen but because of my pale skin and the fact that this is sheer it looks a little too pink on me. Stila has a Lip Glaze in Black Cherry this is a bright orchid purple fuchsia shade. Shu Uemura has an amazing Gloss Unlimited Lip Gloss in PR 059 N, it is a deep and shimmery royal purple. It looks amazing alone or layered over those pinkish purple lipsticks to make them more purpley. Shu Uemura also has a super sheer lip gloss glaze in the Gloss Lacquer in Irrational Purple. It is just a hint of purple and looks nice with deep, dark eyes.

Lip Pencil: MAC has an OK Lip Pencil in Magenta which is a vivid pinkish purple. It looks nice colored in the entire lip with a frosty pinkish gloss over it. NYX has the Long Pencil in Deep Purple and the Slim Pencil in Deep Purple and Purple Rain. These are my favorite and the most budget friendly. Manic Panic has two nice lip pencils in Deadly Nightshade which is a deep and dark purple and Ultra Violet which is a vivid purple. Max Factor has a High Definition Lipliner in Purple. I also find that a cheap little eyeliner does the same thing.

Purple lips are hard to find and you ever find one please let me know. I usually find them in cheaper brands (NYX, Wet N Wild), brands made for woman of “color” (Black Radiance, Iman, Fashion Fair) and sometimes super high end French makeup will launch one (Dior, YSL, Guerlain.) It’s weird. I just really want a super dark purple lipstick dipped in tons of gold shimmer. And I can’t find it!

This color is very sheer but very pretty. It looks healthy and “ripe”. The color in the tube looks much darker than it appears in real life. On, it is a very sheer and satin reddish plum. It adds a healthy tint. It looks like wine stained lips with a layer of sheer glossy lip balm. I really love the color because it really makes my complexion look healthy. It has a little sheen buy zero shimmer. It is the classic Eight Hour formula. It has an odd herbaceous odor. If you are familiar with the original Eight Hour cream, this is the same medicinal, herbaceous odor. That really doesn’t bother me. What bothers me is that it burns my lips after a day’s wear. I don’t know if it is the added SPF 15. My lips don’t take kindly to sunscreens. Sunscreens usually cause them to burn, itch, and become extremely dry. This is what wearing this does to my lips. By the end of the day my lips feel really chapped. I still use it because I like the color. Stupid, I know. I just won’t repurchase. Alot of people rave of this, I would too if it didn’t irritate the crap out of my lips. It retails for $17. It is available at drugstore.com.