Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Camera Stolen :(

Hi all,
I just wanted to keep you in the loop and let you know that my camera was stolen out of my house recently, and with it, numerous photos that I hadn't transferred to my computer yet.  Obviously, my camera has always been an extremely important part of my blogging. That camera has been with me through so many adventures, and I'm so saddened that this has happened. I try not to get too upset about things like this, but it's hard. Next to musical instruments, my camera has always been one of the things I valued most because it has helped me capture so many incredible moments, colors, textures, and so much more. I still have a few photos on my computer that have not yet been posted, so I'll post those soon. I'm working on figuring out how I'm going to be able to purchase a replacement, as I don't have a spare $400 laying around. If anyone knows of any good deals on cameras with great macro settings, please let me know.
Right now, I'm just very frustrated and upset.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Secrets of a Swing Dancer- Foundation

With Lindy on the Rocks coming up, it’s time for me to stop putting off this review. As you may recall, testing foundation makes me a bit nervous. Foundation is a part of my makeup routine that I haven’t quite solidified. I always worry that my foundation looks extremely unnatural. For everyday makeup, I typically hastily brush on the Physicians Formula Healthy Wear Powder Foundation. My reservations regarding foundation probably stem from my makeup history. Until about a year and a half ago, I simply didn’t bother with foundation. Truthfully, I still don’t use it every day. For many years, the only foundation experience I had was that of stage makeup. Man, that pan-cake makeup did a number on my skin and I remember how unattractively the makeup would drip off once I got sweaty. The completely caked on and then dripping off foundation mess is something that I will not put up with for swing dancing.

Powder vs. Liquid foundation:
Please keep in mind that I am still learning about foundation and am by no means an expert on the subject, so I’m just speaking from my personal experience. (Feel free to share your foundation expertise in the comments!)
I’ve found that in sweaty situations, powder foundation simply won’t cut it. It ends up cakey and uneven and generally unflattering.  A high-performance liquid foundation yields much better results. However, it should also be noted that the less makeup you have on, the less makeup there is to melt off.

My skin concerns:
As you will soon see in the photos, my skin certainly can benefit from some foundation coverage. I don’t feel like anyone’s going to run away screaming if I don’t wear foundation, but there’s definitely room for improvement. I have sensitive skin, which is prone to breakouts. My t-zone is quite shiny, but parts of my cheeks, nose, and chin tend to be dry and peel. My skin tone is uneven and I also have scars from acne. The dark circles under my eyes can look downright ghastly in certain lighting. I look for a foundation that will help cover up the unevenness, scars, shine, and blemishes.

The foundation:
I took the Rimmel London Lasting Finish 25 Hour Foundation in Warm Ivory (102) for a test drive. It’s $7.29 for 1 fl oz on the Ulta website.

Adorably tiny photo from the Ulta website

The claims:
It claims to provide a “naturally flawless” and “hydrating and lightweight feel”. The packaging also states that it is “sweat, heat and humidity proof for up to 25 hours. Transfer resistant. Enriched with a revitalizing Mineral Complex and moisturizing Aqua Primer. Skin feels energized and hydrated all day.”

The look:
 My naked face, with flash.

With Rimmel London Lasting Finish 25 Hour Foundation in Warm Ivory, with flash. (And mascara)

My thoughts:
Overall, I was happy with this foundation. The only issues I had with it were that it made my pores a bit more obvious than I would have liked, and that it highlighted the peeling on my face. I wonder if a primer would help with the pore issue. The peeling issue is pretty standard for me though- every foundation seems to make the peeling more obvious. I did notice feeling like my skin couldn’t “breathe” very well, but that’s how I feel about most foundations. Through an evening of swing, this foundation stayed put. I didn’t notice any streaking or transfer. It did a good job of concealing my scars, blemishes, under eye circles, and unevenness. I like the finish- it’s not totally matte, which I think makes it look more natural. The main thing that’s keeping me from using this all the time is the breathability issue. Obviously, naked skin is going to breathe better, especially compared to skin with a foundation designed to hold on through moisture. I’m on the fence about the trade-off: whether I prefer the comfort of no foundation or less breathability with a foundation and thus, nicer-looking skin. The aesthetic difference is obvious in still photos, but when I’m dancing the night away I’m not sure it makes as much of a difference. The lower lighting and nearly constant movement in dancing situations is much more forgiving than my mug-shot type photos. Unless I know I’m going to be in a situation with lots of light and photographs or my skin is looking particularly bad, I’ll probably opt for a bit of concealer here and there over a full face of foundation. BUT: if you’re looking for a foundation to stay put in sweaty situations, I’d give this one a shot.
And hey, it’s worlds better than pan-cake.