Nars Holiday 2007

There are few lines of makeup that can compete with the bold, yet classic Nars Cosmetics. I (like everyone else in the world) am a Nars Blush fanatic. Remember, I own Taj Mahal (which Sam Fine uses on his celebrity clients), Exhibit A, Taos, Crazed and Goldmember.

Just the other day as I was strolling through Neiman’s, I saw the amazing new collection. I swear, I think it is the best collection, by far! The colors attracted me immediately because they didn’t look hard to use. You know how it is for us brown girls, we have to have 30 other colors to choose from to mix in just so the one we love doesn’t make us look ashy or pale! Well, I have my eyes on Balthazar and Cheyenne eye shadow duos. They look like awesome colors to wear on a daily basis. Hopefully Santa will put them in my stocking! I did get to pick up the Sand Piper/ Daredevil set above, which is very, very pretty. Sandpiper is an awesome natural, anytime gloss. Daredevil is an eye-catching, deep red that is going to set it off on Saturday night!!! I am so loving this new collection!!! Come on over to to check it out!!!

An Evening with Sam Fine

I arrived in New York City at 12:45pm, wide-eyed and optimistic. I had the best time of my life in the city last summer as an intern for the Cosmetic Executive Women, and I was so happy to be back! I went out with my buddy Jay, who took me to lunch in Brooklyn and then site seeing in Harlem. The class was held at The MAC store in Harlem, on 125th street. As I waited outside of the MAC Store, I knew I was in for an amazing experience.

We watch him from outside of the tall glass doors, showing the staff how to re-arrange the chairs for his faithful following to view him. He then scurries in the back, and about 7 minutes later, I’m told to come on in. Sam was classic, poised and proper. I only had about 5 minutes to ask him the 20 questions I prepared, so I went with it.

Scandalous Beauty: Sam, what’s the best way to make small eyes look bigger??
Sam Fine: “Really, it’s about adding definition. It’s about highlighting underneath the eye…it’s really about how you frame the eye, how you highlight it…How you arch the brow. It’s really about the things that you don’t always think about, it’s concealer, that’s a great brow. Really highlighting the eye space make eyes look wider and whiter”.

SB: So, let’s gossip. Which celebrities need the least amount of work?
SF:”I don’t have any clients who need a little bit of time! So whether I’m working on Beyonce who of course is very gorgeous, or Halle Berry or Vanessa Williams, I put the same amount of time in! I can’t say that there is one person, because she is so pretty, that I don’t spend in extra time on [her]. ” Great honesty Sam!!

SB:What products do people neglect in their makeup bag?
SF: “Foundation. because a lot of women are used to powder. They are using Studio Fix, they are using pressed powders, they are using loose powders. It’s the only thing that can conceal, the only thing that can illuminate the skin, the only thing that can really unify the tones that we have. So, especially talking about women of color, foundation is going to unite those colors, then use powder. Then powder will set your skin and alleviate any shine. That to me makes the perfect complexion. And that’s what we are not using.”

I took a plethora of notes, as one can imagine.
-Sam stipples foundation AND powder on with sponges, not brushes. This way he can control the amount that he is using.
-Uses heavy moisturizer to aid with the foundation
-Assisted Naomi Campbell while still working at the Cosmetics Counter
-Highlights the cheekbone with Nars Taj Mahal Blush, and places Nars Munia on the apple of the cheek
-Sam always uses cream foundations
-Sam used old brushes that he got in a gift with purchase from Prescriptives over 10 years ago!
-He highly suggests having brown eye shadows, and making them look different by changing your brow highlight, brow color, cheek highlight, etc.

Sam is a ferocious blender. When I say he blends, blends, blends, blends, blends…he blends. He used a cadence of colors on his model (Marie Powell, who is absolutely stunning. Head on over to Sam’s website, she is front and center on the main index page) including MAC Full Coverage Foundations in NC50, C40, W55, and NW50, plus Cream Color Base in Black to blend foundation into her hairline. He lightly stippled NC40 sheer loose powder under the eye with a sponge, then blended it out with a powder brush. He even used 3 MAC products that we used to swear by (before that discontinued them *growl*) Gold Deposit, Metal Rock (R.I.P.) and Shining Star Mineralized Skin Finishes.

And guess what, I had class the following morning bright and early. So, I had to leave Sam’s Diva Session. I was flaming mad, I mean geez, when will I get to experience a class with Mr. Fine again?!? So, I walked to the 2/3 subway with a look of grave anger on my face. Nobody would dare try to rob me that night!!! So, I sat on the subway, then in Penn Station, and then on my train, and even now, wondering what awesome tips I missed. Ms. Giselle told me that he did Marie’s eyes using ONLY the 266 and 219 brushes and ONLY using two eyeshadows. Oh My Goodness, what an artist. I was fortunate enough to meet Nichelle of blog 55 Secret Street who also interviewed Sam. See what she has to say!

So, maybe one day in the (near??) future, I’ll be able to interview Sam again, this time getting more in depth info for us! Head on over to Sam’s website and blog to sign up for updates about his work!

You Might Care To See….

I have been scouring the net for interesting things, and you all might want to check this out!!!

Indian Make-Up Diva gives us a Threading Tutorial!!!

Essence has a behind the scene’s article starring Sanaa, Nia and Gabby!

Yummy411 gives us a great tutorial from Lori (who has gigantic, beautiful natural 3c hair) at the Smashbox Studios in L.A.!

I Like Her Style! shows us some super cute Coats for Fall!

Enjoy!!! I’ll see you on Monday with the scoop from the Sam Fine class in Harlem!!!

Sam Fine: Part One

Hey Beauties,

I’ve been thinking about how to present my Sam Fine interview for that past week or so. That day marked one of the most amazing days in the life of me, EJB. The man is fresh to death, in charge and so amazing. He knows his craft and speaks the truth the whole time. He made us think about what he was doing while he did it, which was great. It was even his birthday, so he fed us red velvet cupcakes!!! Yuuuum.

I can’t give away too much of the interview, but I will say that he takes a lot of time to expertly blend many, many foundations and powders ( about 5 or 6!) to give the highlight and contour that he is famous for. Be prepared to learn a ton ( I definitely did), head on over to Sam’s brand new blog that started just yesterday, The Official Beauty Blog of Sam Fine!

To give you an idea of just how amazing he is, check out the look he did for my mentor Tia Williams of Shake Your Beauty.

Make sure you check back in, I’ll have the full interview and tons of tips and tricks from Sam Fine himself!!!

Happy Monday!

Hey Beauties,

I hope you had a fabulous weekend! And if you see any Veterans, give them a big old kiss on the cheek, they clearly deserve it. In a few hours, I’ll be on my way to NYC to interview Sam Fine. I’m sure you have his book, Fine Beauty. And, he’s graced the faces of Halle, Mary, Yolanda, Naomi, Janet, Faith, and sooo many more. The man is a makeup genius, and he has shown us brown girls how to reinvent ourselves over and over again! He’s going to be teaching a Master Class at the legendary MAC store in Harlem and I am beyond thrilled to be going, of course you will get the scoop!!

Mean while, I was stalking Sephora (as usual), and found such an amazing deal!!! This clutch (which is actually cute) includes my all time favorite Stila Lip Glaze in Brown Sugar, Smashbox O-Glow Blush and a mini Photo Finish Primer, Diorshow Mascara, Sephora Blush Me! Mono in Abricot Plaisir 6 and a Make Up For Ever Diamond Eye Shadow in Diamond Black. This is one of those goody bags that holds the best of the best in beauty right now! If you are a beauty fanatic like this, you have to try this!! Check out the Supermodel Kit here at