About Me

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Your face is my canvas!

For any inquiries feel free to email me at carla.avancena@gmail.com


Sunday, December 19, 2010

An early Birthday and Christmas Gift!

Hi all, I know i have lacked in the regular updates, product reviews and in all makeup related with this blog. I have been a little busy with work since December is a crazy month for Make Up Artists. I have been so busy that I forgot that Christmas is so close and my birthday even closer (December 20). But amidst the crazy sched, I received such a wonderful surprise. Probably one of the best in my life so far. Something which reminded me that yes, Christmas and My Birthday is just around the corner, and I received such a wonderful gift. :)

I was featured in Metro Weddings Volume 10 No. 2 in a half page article about my work. And I tell you I am in total Bliss! It is such a wonderful blessing. This year has got to be the best year in my life so far. I am so happy that I finally found myself in this industry. Here's the feature in the magazine.

Click image to enlarge and click again for a closer look

A cropped version

So far it has been such a wonderful journey. I am ecstatic beyond words for this and I can't stop smiling. I really from the bottom of my heart thank the beautiful Metro Weddings Editor-in-chief Michelle Katigbak-Alejandro for this dazzling feature, thank you so so so much! Thank you to Sheena Ramos for the awesome write-up and to Cathlyn Pavia for her beautiful face. You guys are in my hearts forever. You have no idea how happy you guys have made me. :)

For those residing in Manila and in the Philippines, you can grab a copy of this issue's Metro Wedding Magazine in the nearest news stands and bookstores. :) This issue features the beautiful bride to be Kristine Hermosa and a lot more real life brides, beauty and wedding fashion features.

Happy Christmas Y'all! Let's share the blessings through love and happiness :)

Toodles! :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Talika Lipocils Expert: Longer, thicker and fuller lashes! :)

Just like full eyebrows, I am really big on big, full, long and thick lashes. I'm addicted to mascaras that promise me bigger and fuller lashes. Nowadays I feel empty when I don't get to make my lashes feel fuller and longer with different products. That's why when an angel (also known as Gian) sent me a package , it immediately fluttered my fancy. Gian sent me a sample of Talika Lipocils Expert.

"Discover the absolutely safe solution to naturally enhance the beauty of your lashes in just 28 days.
This amazing lash enhancer is composed of a blend of natural actives from the inventor of the original eyelash growth product in 1948 in France. It has no side effect.
Whether you feel your lashes look too short, sparse, brittle or lack shine and curl, or if you just dream of longer, shinier, sexier looking lashes, Lipocils Expert is your answer…. without side effects."

Talika is simple in creating products that give solution to our appearance's stressful concerns such as our eyes, nails, hands, face and skin. We all want to look better and with Talika's innovation in giving us products that provide emergency solutions for immediate results, they are sure to cater to everyone's needs.

I'm really excited to see the results of Talika's Lipocils expert on my eye lashes. I am currently using them now and will definitely show you guys the results. :) Everyone should have flirty lashes, and now that's possible with Talika's Lipocils Expert! :)

If you are interested in trying this wonderful product, you may place your orders at:


Soon, these products will be available in local department stores! Weeeehh! :)

Toodles! :)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

MAC Pro Longwear Lipcreme

I will give a short but sweet review on probably one of the best lipsticks on earth. I purchased MAC's new Prolongwear lipcreme while I was on my MAC shopping spree in Vancouver back in September and since then they have been my go-t0-lipstick.

It comes in a different packaging from the regular mac lipsticks and actually looks sleeker. :)

I got them in 2 shades, Perpetual Flame and Unlimited
Notice how much I've used already! :)
Perpetual Flame (Left)
Unlimited (Right)

Perpetual Flame (Top)
Unlimited (Bottom)

What I really love about this lipstick is that it stays put for so long but isnt drying on the lips. When I use this lipstick, I receive so many compliments from my friends since they notice that even after a ton of drinks I still have lipstick! :)

Here's a picture of me and my friends during a birthday celebration. The time of the pic taken was probably around 12 midnight. I applied perpetual flame at 6pm and I have not yet retouched the lipstick and by that time, I already had drinks after the other. Lipstick still in tact! :)

My friend Mar, Moi and Jaja :)

I definitely give this lipstick all stars and thumbs up! :) And I will definitely repurchase and buy more colors! :)

Toodles! :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dolce Vita

Don't you just love sudden splurges? I must say yes even though it burns the pocket. I made a sudden splurge yesterday at NARS, I finally purchased their Velvet Matte Lip Pencil. I have been wanting this product for a long time now but the steep price always sets me back.

Nars Velvet Matte Lipstick in Dolce Vita
$24 in the States
PHP1300 in local Nars Counters
Purchased at: Rustans Shangri-la

"Velvet Matte Lip Pencil
Combining the convenience of a pencil with the application of a lipstick in a jumbo-sized crayon design, these pigment-rich sticks provide a matte, creamy finish that will not dry the lips. Enriched with emollients, vitamin E, and unique silicones, each gorgeous shade glides on and stays put.

Size: 0.086 oz"

Dolce Vita

After swatching Dolce Vita on the counter I knew this was a color that would fit my skin color. It looked naturally flushed but not too much. The best part of the product is the texture, "velvet matte" it really feels velvetty and is matte but does not feel dry.

The only thing about it is (aside from its price) is that it doesn't stay as long as my favorite MAC Pro Longwear Lipstick, you have to keep applying this product every now and then. :)

Here's me the same night I bought the lipstick over family dinner. I love the color :)

Toodles! :)

P.S Really sorry about the different font sizes, my blogger is acting up. lol

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Kryolan Dermacolor Concealor Wheel

One product I am obsessed about is foundation. No matter how many foundations I already have in my kit, I always make it to a point to compare different foundations. This was the case when I visited the Kryolan showroom in San Fransisco. As all of you may know, Kryolan has a ton range when it comes to foundation alone. Because of the wide range they had, I asked for assistance and specifically asked for something that would:

a) Do a good job in covering blemishes without looking cakey
b) Something that is light, not heavy on skin (unlike TV Paint Stick)
c) Has yellow undertones

When I told the helpful SA in Kryolan what I was looking for in a foundation, they handed me the Kryolan Dermacolor Concealor Wheel.

I know what you may be thinking, why but a concealer wheel to act as a foundation when ryolan has so many foundation lines out there. My answer is simple, it can provide the most coverage with very little product and its the only wheel with a yellow undertone. Most of the kryolan foundation palette's closest to Asian skin is in Olives but I was still skeptic. Thus, I got this wheel.

"The most effective and long lasting professional makeup for the concealment of tattoo, scars and skin pigment displacements.

It includes the following 6 colors from dark to light: D375, D100, D61, D4, D3, and D32"

D375, D100,1, D4, D3, D32

From the swatches you can see that the product is really pigmented, and this wheel alone can cover both cool and warm undertones given the red (D32) and yellow (D3). So this product hits 2 birds with 1 stone. :) In the case of asian skin or warm undertones, I mixed both D100 and D3 to match with the client's skin tone. And the result is Flawless, full coverage but light on skin make up. hat i like about it best is that whenit sets, the product looks just like skin! Allowing you a flawless face everytime! :)

Below is my good friend Dia, i did her make up using Kryolan's Dermacolor Concealor Wheel. Dia has some blemish marks left by pimples making Dermacolor a perfect product for her. Here's her Before and After picture. What do you guys think? Isn't she beautiful? :)

(click to enlarge)

Kryolan Dermacolor Concealor Wheel now finds itself a home in my make up kit. It is an awesome go to whenever I need a foundation with more coverage. I am really happy I came about this product. :)

Toodles! :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Heaven sent: Beauty So Clean Cosmetic Sanitizer

This has got to be one of the most useful products I have ever purchased for my kit. As you all know, it is important to keep your make up sanitized and clean. There are a couple of ways to do so like never dipping your brush directly into a cream product, using spatulas, always using clean brushes. But now I am so happy that I encountered this new product during my vacation in North America. It's called Beauty So Clean The World's First Cosmetic Sanitizer!

Especially as a make up artist, you always want to keep you kit clean. The last thing you want to happen is for your products to produce bacteria through cross contamination. I first encountered this product when Crystal S. sent me samples from her contest, immediately I decided I should get myself a big bottle for me to use at home. Until I forgot about it and I visited the Holly North Supply Store in Vancouver Canada, I saw the product again and had no second thoughts and purchased it then and there. :)

Beauty So Clean comes in a convenient spritzer that deposits just the right amount so the product does not soak in the sanitizer (which it is not supposed to) :)

Here are the ingredients of Beauty So Clean and also Directions on how to use the product:

Please click image to see larger

I personally love using the product for my powder Foundations, Eye shadows and lipstick palette. Beauty So Clean also has wipes which they recommend for pencils, lipsticks and the smaller products. Although for me, since my lipsticks are all in palettes, I spray beauty So Clean on them let it sit for at least a minute then gently wipe off the top layer of the lipstick with wet ones.

About to sanitize my lipstick palette :)

If you want to learn more about Beauty So Clean, you can check out their website and their whole product range here:


Let's make it a habit and regularly clean and sanitize our products whether they are personal or for professional use. :)

Toodles! :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

MAC Pro Long Wear Foundation with SPF10

In my quest to add liquid foundation in my kit I was choosing over 3 notable foundations. These foundations were Face Atelier's Ultra Foundation, Bobbi Brown's Natural Finish Foundation and lastly MAC's Pro Long Wear Foundation. I ended up getting MAC since not only was it the most convenient and cost efficient for my kit, this new foundation from MAC really lives up to its name being PRO Longwear. For the Pro's and is longwearing. :)

MAC Pro Longwear Foundation with SPF 10
NC20, NC40, NC45

A long-wear foundation that gives up to 15 hours of wear in any environmental condition. Lightweight and creamy, applies smoothly to provide sheer to medium coverage. Even in hot and humid conditions, controls oil to keep skin fresh, natural and flawless. Provides everyday SPF protection." - MAC Website

I did extensive research on the MAC Pro Longwear foundation before I decided to buy it. I also swatched it many times that I had a chance to pass by a MAC store, and until i bought the product and really put it on the road for testing was I convinced! Most reviews I have read states it to be the best MAC foundation date. Now I was never a MAC foundation fan, I have the Studio sculpt which I love for its coverage but it gets kinda oily. So I wouldn't know what other MAC foundations would be like since I mainly use cream foundation for my clients. But this foundation? I L-O-V-E!!!!!

To give you a backgrounder, I have crazy oily skin and when I use foundation (whatever foundation it may be) I get conscious and check the mirror like every hour to check if my face shines. And usually it does, whether little shine or massive hello blot my face already shine. So you have no idea how happy I was when I find a foundation that allows me lesser "shine moments" like before. Mind you, I still get oily that's just how my skin is, but with this foundation, I noticed that I don't oil as frequently as I did before and that when I do oil, it is not that much. Let's break it down:

Unlike other MAC foundations, MAC Pro Longwear comes in a glass bottle with a pump. Having a pump is more hygienic and the best part of it all you can control how much product comes out of the nozzle, which I like because I tend to get OC with my products hehe.

I first tried this foundation when I was in Vancouver and it worked well for me there. But let's face it, Vancouver weather is far from Manila weather, almost the total opposite. So whenI put this baby to the test in Hot Tropical Manila, I was surprised to find that it still worked, i would occasionally oil but not as bad as I expected. And even if I oil, the FOUNDATION STAYED PUT! AMAZING!

So here's a little experiment I did to show how true to its name this foundation really is.

NC20 swatched back of my hand
(My skin tone is NC42, I used NC20 for the purpose of this experiment so you can see the foundation)

Initially spread into skin under natural lighting

Under white lighting in the bathroom before running under water

While running under water you can see that the NC20 MAC Pro Longwear foundation is staying put and not being washed away.

Just right after running under water, still damp but amazingly the foundation did not budge

Completely dry after running under water. You can still see the NC20 on my hand, there was no transfer and none of the foundation came off. Definitely Pro Longwear

As you can see from the experiment the foundation did not budge even after running it under water. And the best part of it all, this foundation is sooo lightweight on the skin and does not feel heavy at all! The coverage though is medium coverage, but this is buildable so if you want full coverage it can also be achieved! :) So here's my verdict:

- Lightweight!
- Buildable Coverage
- I don't oil as much
- Part of MAC's Permanent Line so yayyy!
- Affordable at only $30usd
- Perfect for outdoor shoots and long shoots

- Don't know when this will be available in Manila and how much in PHP
- I wish it had a tad bit more coverage in one layer instead of building for more coverage.

So overall I will have to give MAC Pro Longwear Foundation two thumbs up!! I made the right decision in choosing this foundation for my kit! Yayy! :)

Lastly, here's a picture of me in MAC Pro Longwear foundation 13 long hours after I applied this foundation. I still had it on! :)

Toodles! :)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

CARGO Blu Ray High Definition Make-Up

HD makeup has got to be one of the things I consider top on my list when scouting for make-up. As a make up artist, I see to it that the products that I use is friendly to all kinds of lights since, as we all know, a lot of cosmetics have titanium dioxide in them, the ingredient that causes the "whitish" cast on camera flashes. That is a no-no for me, that's why I love HD makeup because I know it is made for requirements like film, photography and stage.

So when I came about a make up brand called CARGO, their HD products nonetheless caught my eye. And since I'm a foundation/Powder addict, I couldn't wait to try the CARGO Blu Ray High Definition Powder and got my hands on one right away when I visited ULTA in Tanforan Mall San Bruno.

CARGO HD Powder in 30
Price: $30

Back of the Product

I have had this product for about 1 month now and I have got to say that I LOVE IT SO MUCH! I had promised myself that I would review the product weeks ago, but things happen and next thing I know I have already Hit Pan!

That is how much I love this product. I use it practically everyday! It is crazy pigmented and offers awesome coverage for the face yet feels lie translucent powder. Did I say it was pigmented? Check it out.

One swatch picks up so much product thus you have to be careful otherwise a tendency of product being wasted can occur.

Initially swatched back of hand

Spread into skin using fingers, see how it vanishes? It's so light on skin it's amazing!

Overall, CARGO Blu Ray High Definition Powder is HG quality. The only quirk I have with it is because it is so pigmented you have to be careful in picking up the product otherwise a lot will go to waste. It is also pretty hefty at $30 a piece, but it's worth it when you get to try it. :) I would definitely purchase this product again, and it seems that I need one sooner than I think. :) And yet again, HD hasn't failed me. :)

Toodles! :)

Remember how I said it was pigmented? Well check out how much product my finger still had after swatching at the back of my hand and spreading.

Nice! :)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

New Discovery: TWO COSMETICS Gel Liner

This, I would have to give credit to my boyfriend. He was the one who discovered TWO COSMETICS hehe. While I was in the bay area, I got a call from my boyfriend asking me if I wanted anything from Two Cosmetics, specifically their Gel liners. He told me the colors they had available and he got me 2 colors.

Two Cosmetics Gel Liner in

Royalty and Passion

The color Royalty is a a deep turquoise with slight shimmers shade while Passion is a matte purple shade. Definitely something I do not have yet in my make up kit.

Royalty and Passion swatched side by side under natural lighting

The gel liners are really creamy and easy to apply. Once they have been applied I noticed that they are also smudge proof, these babies don't budge!! :) Another thing that I like about them is how pigmented they are and how rich they are to their true color. What you see in the packaging is the color you will see once swatched. What I like about gel liners especially colored ones are that they not only serve as your regular eye liners, they can also act as eye shadow and or eye shadow primer to get more vibrant looking and long lasting eye shadows. :) You are getting a multipurpose product in one little jar! :)

When I searched online for TWO COSMETICS website, I saw that they have a couple of products worth looking at. I'm glad my boyfriend got me the gel liners because I would have gotten them my self had I bumped into this kiosk and discovered it first. The Gel liners were bought at The Great Mall in San Jose for only $12.50 each! If you are nowhere near The Great Mall, you can purchase this in their online store and check out their other stuff too!


What new product have you discovered lately? Cheers to new discoveries! :)

Toodles! :)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Kryolan Aquacolor Day Glow Effects

Being practical is hard to do when you have an obsession with make up. When i enter a store filled with make up, my eyes dazzle and I just don't know where to start, sort of like a little girl entering a candy store. Over time, I have learned that the key to less impulsiveness is research. Before buying a product of investment, I now do my research, do a lot of reading reviews and watching videos to see what people have to say and if its really what I need. This product was no different, I just had to see it and how it works. So when I had a recent trip to the Kryolan headquarters in San Fransisco, one of my purchases in Kryolan was out of curiosity of the product. When I was researching about Kryolan and the Products they offered, a certain palette seemed to be the rave of a lot of International Youtube sensations, this is the Kryolan Aquacolor Day Glow Effects.

The Aquacolor day Glow effects palette caught my eye at the store because of its bright neon colors. I asked for assistance from the Kryolan SA and he happily demonstrated how the colors looked. My main query was how it looked under the UV light to see if it really does glow under UV light. So he swatched the product on his hand, and put his hand under UV light and I was sold. Such pretty colors glowing under black light. :)

Thus, colors from this palette are called:

UV Purple
UV Pink
UV Yellow

UV Green
UV Orange
UV Blue

Initial texture of the product is like cream but dried up, the SA explained to me that the palette and the UV colors is activated by water. You can either pick up the product by using a wet sponge or by dipping a brush (better results if brush is synthetic) in water, tapping off excess water and swiping straight on product.

What it looks like initially swatched, dry and hard to spread

What the product looks like when using a wet synthetic brush, directly applied to skin.
Results are: vibrant pigmented colors. Easy to apply and blend, dries like eyeshadow.
This will glow under black light, i just can't demonstrate that as of now. :)

Overall, Aquacolor Day Glow Effects UV palette is very versatile. When applied on skin with wet application, it dries out just like eye shadow. It can also be applied and used for the whole body. Here's my verdict:

- Bright Bright colors, will come in handy for those Avant Garde Looks!
- Colors glow under UV light awesome for those one of a kind requirements too and HALLOWEEN!
- Colors can still be used even without UV light and are still NEON looking.
- Cheap for only about $30usd (php 1,350) tax included for 6 colors that will last a long time.
- Packaging is handy

- Expensive when bought outside of the US (Kryolan in the Philippines are usually double or more of the retail price)
- Only available online in most areas or only available in specialty make up stores

So will I repurchase: Yes if ever I run out, but I doubt i'll run out of it soon hehe

This palette would be awesome for Halloween, now I just need to look for an Inspiration! :)

Toodles! :)