Saturday, 29 June 2013

Beauty Nerd

As the title implies, I’m going to write about make-up. I’m going to write about teaching, too, but, you know, you can run away now if you’d like.

While I have loved teaching in the past, I have been feeling more and more like this is no longer the career for me. Wha…? It is not my current position that has made me feel this way, but rather the last few positions I’ve had at teaching institutions. It’s not that these were bad jobs (the university being the exception). I’m just not in love with my work anymore. What’s the cause of this change? I’ve been trying to pinpoint what it is that has made me fall out of love with education and I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s several things: the main reason is that education, worldwide, is not longer valued and I feel like I’m wasting my time and efforts. I absolutely abhor wasting time and energy; it’s actually a pet peeve of mine. What does this mean? That soon I will have to make some difficult decisions about my career.

Of the jobs I’ve had, working for MAC cosmetics was one of my very favourite! Although I’m not a fan of working in sales, what made my former position so much fun was playing with make-up and meeting tons of awesome people who helped me become a better make-up artist (co-workers and clients alike). I also loved that I was working for a Canadian corporation (MAC was founded in Toronto, something even some Canadians don’t know!). Although I only worked at MAC for a year, I have been doing make-up application for quite awhile. I have done special event make-up for graduations, weddings, parties, Halloween and even just to go out clubbing (in North America, of course).

I feel like a kid in a candy shop when I’m anywhere in Kuwait that sells make-up that I have a very difficult time getting in Canada. To make matters worse, I’ve heard that QVC and Neiman Marcus no longer ship to Canada (sigh). As difficult as it is to get my hands on some brands in Canada (Giorgio Armani, Bobbi Brown, Burberry, Max Factor, etc.), I can get them here in Kuwait-YAY!!!!! My current rule about buying make-up here is that I only buy products if I can’t get them in Canada or have them delivered to Canada, OR I can get them cheaper here. As a result, I’ve been doing some make-up shopping over the past few weeks. While some of the products cost a pretty penny, the damage hasn’t been too bad because I bought things over a long period of time after testing them out and deciding whether they were even worth buying. No, I can’t get Burberry lipstick in Canada, but do I love it/need it? Will I wear it or use it on someone else? Will it suit my sister, too, so she can help me use up the product? She takes all of my stuff anyway, so I might as well get something she can enjoy wearing, too, hahaha!

I’m impressed with the selection here. If you’re interested in more information, leave a comment. Here are the brands I’ve come across that I can’t get in my hometown: Tom Ford, Burberry, Max Factor, China Glaze, Inglot, Bobbi Brown, Giorgio Armani, Barry M and Soap & Glory. Now, I think that some of these I could get in Toronto (Holt Renfrew maybe?), but I haven’t looked into it.

As an aside, I don’t like every aspect of the beauty industry (animal testing, chemicals, the manipulative ads which are meant to make women feel badly about themselves, overpricing, the misleading/false ads, etc.), but I believe that there are brands out there that are trying to make positive changes and I want to support those as much as I can. As for my family and friends back in Canada, if you need me to do make-up, I’ll be home soon for a whole month!!!

My purchases (all done at the Avenues Mall):

 The damage done at VaVaVoom (Burberry eyeshadow quad in no.6 Plum Pink and a whackload of lipstick, foundation and perfume samples! Thank you to the associates working at the Burberry counter!!!) 
 My new Inglot brushes (the 6SS and the 29PO) and shadows. By the way, if you spend 20 kd or more at Inglot, you can get a 4kd voucher!!! GO NOW if you're interested as you have to use the voucher before July 31st!
Inglot eyeshadows: although these don't look like much in the photo, they are gorgeous shades that are EXTREMELY pigmented! I'd heard about how awesome Inglot shadows are, and most definitely live up to the hype! The top two in the palette are...something that I can't read and 434P. The one on the left is a matte purple-pink shade. The two individual pots are 355 matte (cream colour) and 455 pearl (a more gold and muted version of MACs 'Satin Taupe'). 
These are more recent: Giorgio Armani's Lasting Silk Foundation in 5.5, Burberry Lip Mists in no.202, Copper and no.206, Blueberry and the Inglot brush 11S.
Out of the box :)
 A boat-load of samples that my Georgian friend got when she purchased Clarins products. This is a brand I really need to look into more! It's great!
Bourjouis Healthy Mix Serum in 52 Vanilla (shade no longer being sold here). I got this because Bourjois is quite expensive in Canada and here it's considered a lower end brand. I also picked up Rimmel's Apocalips in 'Nude Eclipse' (left) and 'Luna' (right). I think that they're only identified by numbers here in Kuwait. I have to admit that while I like the shades and pigmentation of the Rimmel Apocalips, I'm not really impressed with staying power. Plus, my tube of 'Luna' decided to explode on me randomly one day in my make-up bag. Since I've kept it standing upright I haven't had any more problems, but that means it's less convenient to take out with me. These aren't a standout lip product to me. Sorry, Rimmel :( 
This was not a necessary purchase since Guerlain is sold at Shoppers Drug Mart in Canada, but I bought it before I'd made some important career decisions. This is Guerlain's Rouge G L'Extrait Lip Colour in the shade M06 'Avarice'. I LOVE this soft, matte lip cream. It's pigmented, soft, long-wearing, light and looks beautiful on the lips! I want to buy other shades in this line, but they're on the expensive side! 


  1. wow.. your makeup hauls are making me quite jealous! and you used to work for MAC? wow.. when was this? before you started teaching? that must have been a really fun job! The only experience I have with a makeup store was filling out an application to Red Earth (and of course getting rejected.. lol) for a part time job back in high school. I don't think we have MAC in NZ.. Red Earth was our go to store for anything makeup related.

    Do you do makeup here in Kuwait? Next time I need to dazzle at a colleague's wedding, I know who to call :)

  2. layla: I apologize! I wasn't posting to make anyone jealous, just showing products that I've picked up here that I can't get in Canada (I'm really excited about them!). I did work for MAC (I left the company right before I moved to Kuwait last September). By the way, I LOVE Red Earth which was a popular brand in Japan while I was living there. I do make-up, so please contact me at the following email address if you're interested:

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    1. anber, i'm so sorry! i meant to REVIEW your comment and i ended up REMOVING it and i have no idea how to undo that :(

      i believe you asked me how much it cost, correct? i can't remember how much it cost since i purchased it such a long time ago. i have a feeling it was between 15-18kd (which i KNOW is pricey!). i didn't end up using it a lot because when i was using up other foundations before and i didn't want to use it too much because it had cost so much. now, however, i have been using another cosmetic line for foundation because of all of the fillers and chemicals in name brand and most other cosmetic lines. i don't use most mainstream brands because they contain parabens, sometimes phthalates, and almost always, animal products or by-products in addition to other harmful chemicals used as fillers.

      i'm sorry i can't help you out more :( for sure you could search for the product on youtube or google and watch/read reviews of it there.

      thank you SO MUCH for visiting and for leaving a question! for what it's worth, knowing what i now know about cosmetics, i don't want to ever purchase most brands that are out there ever again. i apologize if that doesn't help you :S

    2. sorry, i didn't even re-read that reply before checking for errors! i meant i didn't end up using the foundation a lot because i had so many others to use up first AND because i'd spent so much on it, i wanted to use it sparingly. sorry for the confusion!