Monday, February 05, 2007

The Eyes Have It

By Andrea Goodwin, associate editor (

Ok ladies, time to separate the professionals from the amateurs when it comes to make up application. Want to know the give away every time? It is your eyes. The professionals can apply eye make up without tell-tale stripes, streaks, or clumps. Those of us who do not have the luxury of regular professional application often can not achieve that borderless, airbrushed, multi-dimensional look we want. It takes quite a bit of practice to be able to pull off a decent evening eye make up application. BeansTalk offers the following tips on cutting years off the learning curve.

First and foremost, for God’s sake, invest in a decent set of brushes. BeansTalk’s ME appreciates Vox Cosmetics brushes. (See her article 8 January 2007.) Good brushes can make a huge difference in the way make up behaves, and we at BeansTalk just do not see the point of trying to put on shadow and liner if you are using some dried out, flaky, sponge-tipped applicator. Please.

Then, trot down to your local Sephora or Bare Escentuals boutique and pick up the:

Teamed-Up Shadow Collection

This is an excellent basic lineup of four very distinctive bareMinerals eye color products. The team consists of: Explore Soft Focus Eye Shadow (soft warm brown) for a sheer wash of color, Cocoa Eye Shadow (chocolate brown) for a slightly darker, opaque wash, Nude Beach Glimmer (light warm ivory) for a multi-faceted glisten, and Bark Liner Shadow (dark brown) to provide a deeply-pigmented frame for the eyes. These colors are subtle and natural on the lid for day, and rich and warm for evening.

BeansTalk thinks that this set is your best bet when creating a layered look of graduating shades for day or evening. It all depends on how you lightly or deeply you texture your lid, or on how many colors you wear at once – be it two, three, or all four at once. The good news, we feel, is that because the make up is not compacted, as most shadows are, it is much easier to control how much you have on your brush, and as we emphasize, with a proper brush, apply sheer layers. This gives one that evenly blended look. The Bark Liner Shadow is a BeansTalk favorite. We apply this last, after the lid has been shaded, and create a wet line on the upper lid, and a dry line on the lower lid. Very pretty.

For your lashes, we recommend:

Bare Escentuals Big Tease Mascara (Size: 0.28 oz /$15.00)

As per Sephora: Remember back when hair was teased a mile high? Well, this lash lengthening and thickening mascara does the same for your lashes. Its unique brush has a thinner side that separates and lengthens lashes one by one, easily reaching the littlest of lower lashes and the thicker, short-bristled side builds volume for incredibly intense, amplified eyes. From root to tip, this lash magnifying mascara makes ordinary lashes into noticeably longer, fuller, flirty lashes in seconds.

BeansTalk enjoyed this mascara and feels that there is no hard and fast rule for which side of the brush one should use first. We found ourselves going back and forth between the two in a single application.

When you are on the go, you may need to take certain essentials with you. You never know when tears or fatigue may stain your face! We recommend:

Liner Shadow Compact Quad III

This is a really cool little set of shadow liners in one compact which can be worn dry for soft, subtle color, or worn wet for a more dramatic look. The combination of shades, Bon Bon (chocolate mint), Brocade (golden slate purple), Incense (rustic pewter), and Luxe (charcoal gray), offer a variety of looks. BeansTalk especially recommends this palette for readers who are slaves to black and brown. Colored liner is a great way to freshen your look without stepping out of bounds of your personality. For convenience the compact includes a fine-tipped brush and two mixing wells. BeansTalk finds the price convenient as well: $24.00

BeansTalk also recommends the standard Bare Escentuals Mascara as a purse staple. (Size: 0.2 oz / $15.00) The packaging is small enough to fit small handbags, but that is the only thing small about it. BeansTalk especially liked the large brush on the wand and the dense concentration of bristles, as we feel this design best produces dramatic, evenly-coated, full lashes. This beanstalk staffer is also a contact lens wearer and found removal quite easy.

For extra pizzazz anytime try the Bare Escentuals Magic Wand Brushless Mascara in deep teal green over any mascara or by itself. (Size: 0.30 oz/ $15.00) BeansTalk had to try this when we heard about it. Yep, you read it correctly; the wand is brushless! It has small grooves on the end to glide over lashes. The idea here is that one coats lashes individually for volumizing effects. We love the idea of creating a “wash” of teal green over a black or brown mascara. It is pretty and fun without being costume-y or juvenile.

As always, you can find Bare Escentuals at one of their boutiques, Sephora,, or by calling 800/227-3990.