Holiday Glamour

December heralds the start of the holiday season, and holiday cheer calls for makeup with bold colors, ramped-up shimmer and sparkle known in the beauty industry as “strobing.” This is also the month when our weather becomes colder and drier, which means paying extra attention to hydrating both face and body is a must.

Colors of the Season

This year’s palette shows a return to Vamp, that dark black-burgundy made famous by Chanel a number of years ago. Chanel’s limited edition collection for holiday also includes rouge-noir, a black with red undertones. And speaking of red, brick and dark red lipsticks are everywhere.

Nude lip shades continue their reign of popularity, trending brownish mauve or rose, and are perfect when rocking a smoky, grey/metal/black eye. Christian Louboutin lipsticks are the most indulgent, but also extremely comfortable and pretty.

Liquid lipsticks are hot. Intensely colored and often matte, the best formulas give great color payoff and aren’t too drying. Sephora’s house brand Cream Lip Stain is highly regarded (check out Marvelous Mauve), as is Kat Von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipstick (the most-coveted color, Lolita, now comes in three shade varieties); Anastasia’s Liquid Lipsticks (Dusty Rose is a stunner) and Lipstick Queen’s Vesuvius Liquid Lipstick are packed with jojoba and Vitamin E.

That Holiday Glow

Highlighters in creams, liquids and powders are all the rage, and applying them liberally is called “strobing.” Used to throw radiance to highpoints on the face, décolletage and shoulders, there are as many shades as there are formulations – everything from bronze to pearl and big chunks of glitter to barely there gleam. Tapped on with fingers or swept on with a tapered brush (the Hakuho-do small teardrop is just right), all are easy to apply.

Some of this season’s top highlighters include the gorgeous range from Becca Cosmetics, including makeup guru Jacklyn Hill’s collab color in Champagne Pop, glowy RMS Living Luminizer. Jouer Highlighter in Camellia and Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders.

That’s Slick

Keeping skin hydrated and smooth is a challenge during winter months. Lotions, butters, oils and hybrids pack store shelves. Drugstore versions do the job, but for those who like to spoil themselves, the spa brand Osmia has a feather-light Body Mousse rich with shea butter and jojoba oil, deeply scented with rosemary, a circulatory herb that gets blood flowing and has a unique warming effect. Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter comes in ten scents (Sweet Citrus is rave-worthy) and has a big following for the texture, fragrance and efficacy. Australian essential oil-based Aesop is a line difficult to find in New Orleans (George Bass store exclusive), but the heavenly-fragranced body and hand creams sink in well and leave skin soft, not sticky. In the oil category, there are two new ones to try this season: Blissful Body Facial Oil and locally made Green Evangeline are standout Etsy finds with best quality oils that can be used on body and face.

Perfect Presents

Of course the holiday season means gift giving. Every brand puts together beautiful sets and boxes for body and face; they’re not only economical, but there’s always a little something extra special contained therein and a bonus for the buyer. Beauty junkies might also love getting the newest book releases from makeup gurus Dita Von Teese and Lisa Eldridge. With all the new coming in, it’s time for a clean out. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up is a great guide to clearing the cosmetics collection clutter in preparation for the New Year.

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I lean toward higher-end cosmetics and skincare because the products tend to be better quality and have better color pay-off – most of the time. I am going through a Chanel phase, perfectly in love with the fall and holiday releases. Specifically, I’ve been into wearing the luminous cream shadow (Illusion D’ombre) in Mirage, a deep gold-bronze. I tap that on my lid and then add a lot of black mascara for my everyday look. To glam things up a bit, add Chanel’s Le Crayon Khol and Le Volume Mascara in Rouge Noir. The hint of deep red embedded in the black is fascinating and great for winter. I also picked up Hourglass’ primer, which has a lavender cast to combat and counteract any redness in my skin.

However, Becca Backlight Priming Filter is all about that glow. The Becca Primer topped by Too Faced Born This Way foundation, mixed with a drop of facial oil is my night time/party base.

My daily foundation is a primer (depending on how my skin is behaving) topped by Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Day Tint, allowing my skin to breathe yet look flawless. For fragrance, I’ve been rolling on newly released 9:30 Perfume, a lovely, slightly sweet jasmine and musk scent created by Regina Gardiner, an accessories editor for People Magazine’s StyleWatch. Everyone loves the Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray, but I’m here to tell you that Tresemme Perfectly Undone Dry Defining Spray is a dead-on dupe.



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