A good set of brushes can last you at least a couple of years. In order to keep them in good shape, treat them with extreme care and keep them clean. You do not have to wash your makeup brushes every time you use them but if you wear makeup every day, you should definitely wash them once a week. Here is how to do it:

1. Gently wash them with a baby shampoo or a brush cleaner.

2. Once you are done, lay them flat on a piece of paper towel. Do not stand them up because the water will drip into the part connecting the handle with the metal part and this will mess up the glue inside.

3. Let them air dry. Do not attempt to make them dry faster by using a blow dryer. This will only damage your brushes.

4. Once they are completely dry, gently reshape them.

Q10 Eye Cream (US$24)
Q10 is great for fighting fine lines and firming skin. This eye cream is a little thicker and less blendable compared to my last one (Benefit’s Eyecon). I have been using this for 5 days and it’s a little too soon to notice any changes in undereye circles or puffiness but my eye area does feel a lot smoother and a little firmer. Good pick for those with dry undereye area.

Revitalizing Moisture Strips: Eyes ($6.50)
I have always loved these Japanese undereye strips so when I saw these on the DHC website, I had to get them. Made of soft high-polymer gel and infused with botanical brighteners and moisturizers, these strips claim to diminish the appearance of dark circles and bags. My eyes definitely feel more refreshed and hydrated after using them. I tried leaving these on overnight as recommended by DHC and it left behind this red mark around my eyes that took a while to fade. I personally would suggest leaving it on for 20-30 minutes max for best results.

Water Base Moisture ($15)
This is supposed to be a lightweight moisturizer that contains glycerin, royal jelly, elastin and ginseng. To me it feels and looks just like toner – it is super watery and does not smell like alcohol. I do not feel any tightening or astringent effect. I use it before the Easy Care Milky Lotion and it keeps my skin moist and supple.

Easy Care Milky Lotion for Dry Skin ($18)
This is a toner and moisturizer all in one. It contains polyglutamic acid, aloe and primrose and claims to refine the complexion, help to tighten pores and control excess surface oil. I use this AM and PM and I only need two pumps for my entire face. It feels a little tacky when I first applied it onto my face but it sinks right in. I do not notice any tightening effect but my skin feels and stays soft and supple.

Overall I am very happy with my purchase and I will keep using these products. I will update if anything changes.

I understand how picking the right bronzer can be a pain so fear not, I have narrowed down a list of bronzers I tried and loved just for you ladies:

If you are looking for a glowy/shimmery look, try

Hard Candy So Baked Bronzer ($9)
Available in 4 gorgeous shades of golds and bronzes, these come in the cutest compact and are such a great dupe of my favorite MAC Mineralize Skinfinish at half the price! They impart a dewy, bronzed glow and can easily be layered on for more color. My only gripe is these babies don’t travel well and tend to break easily so make sure you keep them somewhere safe.
Overall Rating: B+

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Just saw Makeup Makeovers : Expert Secrets for Stunning Transformations by Robert Jone (~$14) at Borders last night and it is definitely one of the best books on makeup out there – trust me I have read a ton (Kevin Aucoin, Bobbi Brown, NARS, Sonia Kashuk, Iman etc.)

Not only does it have a glossary of cosmetic terms, clear step-by-step instructions but also a detailed section on different makeup products. It also shows people of different ages, races and skin tones plus unlike some of the books, this one does not try to sell you certain products. The before-and-after pictures are also very inspiring and some of them are just stunning (I was drooling over them at the bookstore). So run to your nearest bookstore to grab a copy for yourself!

*Robert Jones is an international makeup artist who has worked on Sherly Crow, Leanne Rimes and Dixie Chicks. His other works include Simple Beaute and Beaute’ Made Simple.

We all know picking a mascara with the right brush is very crucial to getting long, lush lashes. And lately, companies like CoverGirl and Max Factor have all been coming out with mascaras with “advanced, flexible brushes” that claim to reach out to every single little lash, base to tip, corner to corner.

To see if this claim is true, I testdrove CoverGirl Lash Exact. I have been using the mascara for almost 2 weeks now and guess what? I really liked it. The plastic bristles picked up every single little lash that I didn’t know existed. Plus unlike traditional brushes, this one does not make my lashes clumpy and I do not have to comb them. It also did not flake on me nor smear onto my undereye area. I will definitely stock up on this during my next trip to the drugstore.

Read more Mascara Reviews!

I got a couple of new MAC pigments earlier this week. Here they are:

Zorpia Photo Sharing: Free Unlimited Storage & Bandwidth

Ruby Red: I have used this before in one of my “Face of the Night” entries. It is a shimmery raspberry red color.

Golden Lemon: this is a shimmery goldish yellow color. It would be great as a wash or for highlighting the inner corner.

Chartreuse: this is a shimmery kiwi green with yellow in it. I wore this with Deep Blue Green and it made my eyes pop.

Kelly Green: this color is exactly the same green you see on St. Patrick’s Day. This would look *so* pretty with Chartreuse.

Deep Blue Green: this looks black in a quick glance but is actually a very dark blue with a green sheen to it. This would look great as a liner or for a smoky eye look.

If I have time, I will probably do a couple of looks with these colors and post pictures.