eyeliner on a cat

eyeliner on a cat
beauty, scent & style scrutinized for pleasure

Monday, December 30, 2013

We have a NEW WINNER for the HURRAW! Lip Balm trio giveaway!

The NEW winner for the Hurraw! Balm trio giveaway is...


Please email me at eyelineronacat at gmail dot com with your mailing address and you will soon have your paws wrapped around your very own delicious HURRAW! lip balms.
**as before, if the winner does not come forward by Monday, January 6th by 12 noon Central Time, another winner will be chosen**

List Randomizer

There were 10 items in your list. Here they are in random order:
  1. Andrea Murdock
  2. Suzy Lewis Ship
  3. tzeni pap
  4. Jackie Burns
  5. Wendy
  6. Sarah
  7. Barbara B
  8. Aliceatious
  9. Elizabeth RB
  10. Sunny
Timestamp: 2013-12-31 03:44:42 UTC

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Beauty Spotlight Team: 20 Questions with Jessika from Polish Insomniac!

It's Jessika's week for 20 Questions from The Beauty Spotlight Team!  Will she crack under the pressure?  Is there a real person under all that glitter (and hair)?  It's time to find out!

Friday, December 27, 2013

My Top 8 Fragrances of 2013: (or, the year-long rollercoaster of olfactory pleasures)

It's LIST TIME again! Always a treat for us bloggers. This year, as with every other, these fragrances are in no particular order, and if I do say so myself, this is quite an interesting group of perfumes I've got here. My consumption of scents in terms of numbers has not been quite as high as in years past, but these fragrances caught my attention instantly and I knew they would receive my year-end attentions. There are several new brands, and nothing pleases me more to be able to embrace new niche companies and the fantastic talents behind them. Below are links to the lists of my blogging compatriots-- for additional listy-type reading entertainment, please do check out their posts as well!

Olfactoria's Travels
Fragrant Moments
Candy Perfume Boy

Aftelier Cuir de Gardenia
With the simplicity of the finest natural tiare essence along with natural castoreum, I'm not sure a floral fragrance lover could dream a better perfume. Cuir de Gardenia is so rich and uplifting all at once-- it's one of Mandy's most lust-inspiring, maddeningly perfect, expensive-smelling creations yet. Unscrew the cap and it just might whisper stories into your ear that would make you blush. Over the years I've come to find out that it's not my toys or the television or my cat that hypnotizes me and tells me to do bad things, it's perfume. I'm going to love and wear Cuir de Gardenia with pleasure and abandon, and if I wind up in jail, Mandy, I'll need you to bail me out.

Neela Vermeire Creations Ashoka
As many of you know, I'm still completely obsessed with Trayee. However, Neela's newest creation, Ashoka, is a very, very close second. The composition is complex (in true Duchaufour style) but the effect is tempered with pure soul. I find its milky, powdered fig and sandalwood very soothing, and the intense overlay of a cool, otherworldly floral melange led by jasmine sambac (my favorite kind of jasmine) and osmanthus is something akin to icing on the cake. However, comparing this fragrance to food just seems wrong. Whatever this is-- this magic-- can only live in the ether, where you're lucky if you ever get to meet it.

Parfums Retro Grand Cuir
Fledgling brand Parfums Retro's first release Grand Cuir instantly made me feel all sorts of things. It has an incredible effervescence that you don't find in many leather fragrances. It draws you in and won't let go-- not that I would ever want it to. It's a many-faceted diamond that sparkles in its frankness and refusal to blend into the standards that have been set by the industry, critics like myself, or any other person desiring to categorize and simplify it. Grand Cuir is a leather fragrance for optimists, and for pessimists looking for a change of pace. And, I love the Art Deco chevron design on the label, which fits the brand perfectly. Overall, it's a very impressive and interesting first launch for Parfums Retro, and I can't wait for the next one.

Charenton Macerations Christopher Street
Everybody, meet the fragrance I wore most of the summer. I had been eagerly awaiting this new brand's first release, Charenton Macerations Christopher Street. The story is rich with history of the joy, freedom, revelry, individualism, pain, violence and turmoil of a particular area of New York City- The Village. I have two major associations with that neighborhood-- the happy memories of spending time with my mother there on our occasional trips, and the riots of Stonewall in 1969. You can fit thousands of lifetimes and experiences in this bottle of shimmering, combustible, energetic fragrance, and the imagination and artistry that went into making this a perfect fragrance for either gender, for any situation, is rather mind blowing to me. How to explain the Willie Wonka-esque everlasting drunken salty lime note? I don't know, I guess you'd have to ask Ralf Schweiger, who composed it. There is a lot of creative transparency and lore to pore over on the CM website, and it all makes for interesting reading. At the end of the day, though, Christopher Street, in its purposefully modest packaging, is one of the fragrances I reach for the most, and my favorite thing to smell traces of on my clothes.

Rouge Bunny Rouge Embers
UK/Moscow cosmetic brand Rouge Bunny Rouge relies heavily on fantasy. If you look at (or use) their products, you'd know their signature whimsical style and stories. They eschew infantile cutesy-ness for shadowy rabbit-hole oddities, and it really works for them. Their cosmetics are fantastic and their seasonal collections offer much more originality than you'll find with the usual high-end department store suspects-- this is niche beauty on steroids. The looks they create are what I want, so I was not surprised at all when they released a series of fragrances that I found equally impressive. I mean, really impressive. I like all of them, love a few, but am out-of-my-mind obsessed with Embers. It's smoky and woody (which you may have already gathered), but it's loaded with spices and aromatics that mercifully last for days if you let them, and yet it manages to not be cloying. It's a super-sexy swoon-worthy unisex sillage monster and I love it intensely. In the US, it currently can only be ordered through Beautyhabit.com.

Aether Arts Burner Series no. 4 John Frum
Amber Jobin is the perfumer behind Aether Arts, who until fairly recently was under Dawn Spencer Hurwitz's apprenticeship. Some of you might remember that Dawn created a bespoke perfume for me a couple of years ago, Guimauve de Soie, which was a huge thrill for me. Amber created a series of perfumes for Burning Man, and I fell in love with no. 4 John Frum, right here in my living room-- not naked in the desert. But I do know someone who was there, though I've no idea if she wore her clothes or not. Anyway, Burner no. 4 is a super-fresh vetiver and leather concoction that is oil-based, and wears close to the skin. With other, milder notes of tropical flowers and a faint touch of coconut, besides the vetiver of course, the other main ingredient it boasts is kava kava, which in herbal medicine is known to help a number of different ailments, including its function as a sedative, an anesthetic, and a psychoactive drug with its numbers of kavalactones reaching up to fifteen or so. I must admit I have no idea what the plant smells like, and I've never seen it in person in its natural form. But if I'm smelling it in this perfume, it's delightful. I don't know anyone who wouldn't love Burner no. 4, which makes it a must have, and a good one to stash small bottles of for gifts. Amber and Aether Arts are bringing something special to the table-- watch this one, folks.

SOIVOHLE' Carpathian Oud Cologne and Demi Absolute
Yep. Those who know me, know that I might be a little obsessed with Christopher Lee as Dracula from the old Hammer films. When I heard the name of this fragrance, I thought, "the old-school vampire lover in me AND the black metal lover in me are making out right now". I remember years ago when I went bazonkers over Liz Zorn's Meerschaum, her ode to my other favorite fictional character, Sherlock Holmes. This is Meerschaum 2.0, people (only similar in degrees of bazonks I went over them). Carpathian Oud is one of those rare fragrances where I've gotten handed two different versions of it at the same time, so that is a total treat for me. I tried the cologne first, which I declared addictive (between long inhalations). When it came time for the demi-absolute, a new world opened up. It's like watching a Dracula film or reading Stoker's book vs. being right there in the Carpathian Mountains as the sun is setting and you've got no idea where you'll find shelter for the night. Carpathian Oud has many aromatic oddities, a curious balance between acidity and alkalinity, and the distinct tang of metal. Ah, yes. Iron! That's it. The mineral found in human blood. It's earthy, sexy as hell, and can be defined by the word exotic. It's not from here, it's not from there... it's a Liz Zorn creation, and this is a scent that I want to be buried with.

[photo includes DOGSTAR and both Carpathian Oud concentrations]

SOIVOHLE' Dog Star Cologne
A Soivohle/Liz Zorn cologne-concentration fragrance can be deceivingly potent, so that's one (good) thing to consider when thinking about trying Dog Star- but I will warn you, it's already on clearance and being phased out, so snatch some up NOW. Hopefully it will return again one day. Anyway! Dog Star is what you would find on offer at an intergalactic, floating department store for aliens (I know, I watch a lot of Doctor Who). It has a very human, tactile quality to it, but it feels very, very steely and cold in temperature with ozonic muskiness, choya and patchouli. To be perfectly honest, it fascinates the hell out of me. I don't even know who I am when I'm wearing it. And that, is what has earned Dog Star a place on my list. Too strange to live, too beautiful to die.

[disclaimer: I was not compensated for any of my reviews or statements. Samples were provided by the perfumers for my consideration. All photos courtesy of their corresponding brands]

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Winner of the HURRAW! Lip Balm Trio Giveaway!

Out of 11 entries, Random.org helped me to pick a winner...
Please email me at eyelineronacat at gmail dot com with your mailing address and I will mail your prize out to you as soon as possible!

*If it should happen that I do not hear from the winner by Tuesday December 31st at 12pm, Central Time, another winner will be chosen.*

There were 11 items in your list. Here they are in random order:
  1. Kasha
  2. Elizabeth RB
  3. Andrea Murdock
  4. Sunny
  5. Wendy
  6. Suzy Lewis Ship
  7. Aliceatious
  8. tzeni pap
  9. Sarah
  10. Jackie Burns
  11. Barbara B
Timestamp: 2013-12-24 02:54:52 UTC

Friday, December 20, 2013

HURRAW! The art of amazing lip balm [and a killer giveaway!]

**The draw is now closed- a winner will be announced shortly!**

Some of you might already be thinking, "Lip balm? For real?'  Yep, lip balm. It's a big deal to me, and over the years, I've used hundreds of them. I'll find one that I think is great, but after the third or fourth one, there will inevitably be something... one little thing... that bothers me about it enough that I won't buy it again. It's too sweet. The texture turns grainy after awhile. It melts too easily, it won't stay on my lips long enough, it's too waxy... I could go on. I even have brands that I return to periodically because they're perfectly lovely but I just need to be in the mood to use them. You see, I've usually got about a dozen active lip balms at a time, stashed in different places. I'm obsessed. The lip balm love affair may actually be one of the most common beauty obsessions that exist.

So what's the big deal about Hurraw! lip balms? They are silky and satiny, sexy and perfectly textured, profoundly hydrating, all natural, made with uber-high-quality ingredients that are literally good enough to eat, they are softly fragranced, very affordable... and my favorite part? They're not all formulated exactly the same. Each balm is a little work of art in itself, and I think this is most evident in several of my favorites, including the Ayurvedic trio (Pitta, Vata & Kapha).

My interest in the ancient Indian healing art and science of Ayurveda has grown quite a bit over the past couple of years, and these lip balms are formulated on-site with finesse and thoughtfulness by a staffer who also happens to be a practitioner of Ayurveda. Like every HURRAW! lip balm, they are authentic, a pleasure to use and filled with gorgeous ingredients.

While it was the Ayurvedic trio of balms that pulled me in, it was the "tea trio" that held me down. I'm absolutely crazy about them, but my crown jewel has to be Green Tea. Here's the ingredient breakdown:
Sweet almond oil, hemp oil, coconut oil, jojoba oil, cocoa seed butter, olive oil, camellia (green tea) powder, vitamin e, natural flavors. The brand uses raw, organic, vegan ingredients to create their products, and wildcrafted ones whenever possible.

This stuff makes your lips so soft and hydrated, that I swear that I can feel the moisture seeping through my lips into my entire face. Can you picture that? Maybe it sounds kinda gross, but if you're the winner of the TEA TRIO giveaway, you can find out for yourself if that's an accurate description of the delightful insanity that is  HURRAW! lip balms, and perhaps if this blog's readers are lucky, share some of your own weird technicolor visions of these addictive lip care products.

I've already bought some for my closest friends and family, and I personally own about twenty of these at any given time. My goal is to have tried one of everything, and I'm not very far off, to be honest. My husband is totally into the Root Beer balm, and Mom goes for the citrus fruits: lemon and lime. Another brilliant duo that I haven't mentioned yet are the Sun and Moon balms: Sun is tangerine and vanilla with SPF 15, and Moon consists of a mercifully soothing blue chamomile and vanilla, and is a bit thicker so that it really stays on all night.

You can win one each of the following lip balms, tucked away in an adorable little muslin drawstring bag:
Green Tea, Chai Spice and Earl Grey.

Just leave a comment below telling me about your current favorite lip balms, and what you look for in the ideal lip balm. On Monday night around 7pm Central, I will announce the winner in a new post. The winner will be determined by Random.org. At that time, the winner will be responsible for emailing me at eyelineronacat at gmail dot com with their mailing address so I can send out their goodies! Think of me as a version of Santa Claus that deals strictly in badass stocking stuffers, who has way too many pairs of high-heeled boots and bottles of perfume for her own good.

Feel free to head over to the HURRAW! website to check out all the different flavors and formulations they have. If you are a true lip balm freak, I dare you to click away without buying a couple. That is something I've been woefully unable to do as of yet.

Good luck to everyone, and happy holidays to you and yours!

[prize trio provided by HURRAW! balms. All other balms purchased by me for my own personal use. All images copyright HURRAW! balms, all rights reserved.]

Saturday, December 14, 2013

The Beauty Spotlight Team: Twenty Questions with Kate from Drivol About Frivol

It's 20 Questions Time Again! Get to know a little bit more about Kate from the blog that covers more scrumptious beauty goodies than one person should be able to handle, Drivol About Frivol.

Happy weekend, everyone!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Getting to Know... Perilously Pale from The Beauty Spotlight Team

This week, we delve into the mind of Christa, author of the beauty blog Perilously Pale. I've always liked her blog not because her reviews always seem to interest me, as does her writing, but because I feel a very special, pallid kinship with her. Yet neither of us have a real problem with our low-melanin status, and that's what makes us part of the Sisterhood of the Porcelain Pigment.

Click HERE to read Christa's interview!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Sandalwood Again ["come with us now on a journey through time and space..."]

A couple of years ago, I very accidentally happened into some very vintage sandalwood oil. I'd bought a cute mini flask, green, corrugated glass, that I had plans to fill with something special. When it arrived, it was already full of liquid. A dab on my hand and a few long inhalations told me that this was sandalwood oil. Very old, probably from the 60s or 70s. It was, as I like to call it, the cosmic motherlode, and I love to imagine who used to own it and what his or her life was like at the time.

Silver Factory hijinks.

While my life is more The Mighty Boosh than Doctor Who (thankfully, yet regrettably), every once in awhile, I like to revisit the past and bring out that little flask. It now resides in a lovely deerskin medicine bag given to me by my beautiful friend and employer, Angela Shore, who creates spectacular oils for her brand Jiva-Apoha. Today was one of those blessed days. I put a dab of vintage on one hand, and a dab of Angela's sigh-inducing sandalwood she obtained from India last year, on the other hand. As per usual, I called in my husband to be the sniff-tester, and I took note of his reactions [he is a very gifted savant fragrance critic- I guess creativity is creativity, no matter how you slice, dice or roll it].

First, the vintage. Seventeen sniffs later, he said, "Powerful. Ripe, almost skunky. Dirty leather and dusty sex. Easy Rider with twice the drugs." That's a lot of drugs.

Lord Hopper on his low-rider.

Then, Angela's sandalwood. He measured his words more carefully this time."Gentler. Sweet. Godly."

Siddhartha under the Bodhi tree.

I totally agree. And do the scents represent the times from whence they came? Absolutely. And they are both wildly attractive to the point of obsession, as far as I'm concerned. They are both gifts from the earth, and when they're gone, there will be no more that is exactly the same.  So in the meantime, I will treasure every drop and allow myself to occasionally experience the sublime nature of real, precious sandalwood-- not the fragrance industry's estimation of what it should smell like. And the best part? The unleashing of my husband's unwitting genius in distilling the essence of fragrance in very few, pithy and mostly hilarious words. I often find the best inspiration to write about my own passions in the people and places that orbit in galaxies far, far away from fragrance. Even if they happen to sleep next to me at night.

Crimping for the greater good

Friday, November 22, 2013

Truly, Madly, Deeply: New vs old Besame Cosmetics products

I've been a fan of Besame Cosmetics for years, and have seen almost all of my favorite products come and go, for various reasons. But I have held on to some of the lovely little compacts and lipsticks, and only wish I could still get their delicate rose facial moisturizer and translucent loose powder. Anyway, I have tried some of their newer offerings in order to compare and contrast.

First, I'm very happy to see that the size of their lipsticks have grown to full size, instead of lil' babies. Those little ones were very cute, but they were not any less expensive for their size. I picked Merlot, a matte brick red that is extremely highly-pigmented, soft and very comfortable to wear. The delicate vanilla fragrance is nice too. In these respects, all that has really changed with the lipsticks is the size. They have always been top quality, and suitable not just for vintage junkies-- these are just plain amazing lipcolors.

[old on left, new on right]

[Merlot- gorgeous on pale skin]

[note the flat, tapered edge to the lipstick- perfect for precision application w/o a brush]

The other product I HAD to get was the Violet Brightening Powder. It's in loose form with an included puff. I applied a dusting of it after using a lightweight liquid foundation (Urban Decay Naked Foundation), and the finished look was really stunning. With the smooth complexion and the deep, matte lips, I didn't feel like I needed any other makeup at all. 

[translucent, violet loose powder-- perfection!]

[a product that's a blessing for the fair-skinned]

Besame has been the big winner in the game of packaging for a LONG time, which is why I could never part with anything. I've got little eyeshadow and blush compacts that I'm hoping I'll be able to find refills for one day, but if not, I'll just save them for the day I get my dream vanity table. 

[get a load of the lipstick sample matchbooks! I love them]

[modern packaging, including the new lipstick sample matchbooks]

[older compacts- both eyeshadows, plus the old lipsticks. Tiny and cute- minaudiere-friendly]

[old eyeshadows, and old vs. new lipsticks]

Besame has a new souffle formula foundation that I must try, there's 1930s cake mascara, cashmere pressed powder, and even vintage-style crimson rouge-- all worth a try, because Besame never disappoints. If you like your vintage style with a wink and a nod, and not necessarily head-to-toe phoniness, Besame will be your new cosmetics BFF. If you can only try one product from this brand, make it a lipstick. If you can't decide on a color, order those genius little matchbooks to sample!

[all products were purchased by me for my own personal collection. I have not been compensated by the brand monetarily or with product]

Friday, November 8, 2013

Friends to the Forlorn Pit Bull Rescue eBay charity auction-- it's on!

There is a super cool auction going on right now that benefits Friends to the Forlorn Pit Bull Rescue in Georgia. There is a tempting variety of things on offer, including an 8 oz bottle of Jiva-Apoha ATMAN (SPIRIT) Body Oil ($140 retail value). It's an uplifting and very sensual Ayurvedic skin treatment oil that is also my personal favorite, all year-round.

For all my fellow beauty/skin/hair care buffs and animal lovers out there, take a look and see if anything catches your fancy!

(I love their classic tattoo-style logo)

I nub me some pit bulls and feel very strongly about how unfairly the breed has been treated in the media and especially how they've been mistreated at the hands of greedy, soulless people who only want to exploit them. Pit bulls are, in my opinion, the most loyal breed of dog there is, and they will lay down their lives for their loving family, if necessary. They also give the BEST slobbery kisses, they are sensitive and thoughtful pets and will sit on anyone's lap just for some affection (whether they fit on said lap or not). I worked at an animal hospital for 11 years, and during my time there, not one single pit bull came through that front door with a bad attitude. In fact, they were hands-down the friendliest patients we had, and several neighborhood pitties would practically drag their owners through our door when out on a walk, just to say hello and get a biscuit for the road. It's not luck, I assure you, it's the benefit of a caring owner who understands the breed and its genetic traits, and forms a bond based on a mutual desire for affection AND protection. Trust means everything when you are the guardian of any animal.

For those who don't know, I work for Jiva-Apoha and donated the bottle of body oil for this auction on the company's behalf (my boss and Jiva founder Angela Shore is a badass and can't resist a good charity). I really hope to work with Friends to the Forlorn again-- partly because the founder, Jason Flatt, and the staff I've been in contact with (Bree, I'm looking at you, kid) are SO friendly and loving towards these dogs. I urge all of you to bid on an item or two, or check out the rescue's membership and shopping pages on their website. If anyone would like to donate any items for future eBay auctions that benefit Friends to the Forlorn, you can contact them via email at info@friendstotheforlorn.org. And hey! If you're in the market for an amazing dog and are anywhere near Georgia, you can fill out an application form online as well. Please feel free to share the auction and/or rescue website links on your social media drugs of choice.

The Jiva-Apoha ATMAN body oil auction ends on Monday, November 11th, (Veteran's Day!) at 6:00 am Central Time.

OMG a truckload of puppies! (pic courtesy of FTTF Rescue)

Thanks for reading my passionate divergence from the norm here on eyeliner on a cat. I'd like to leave you with this brief but amazing video about a little boy and his beloved pal Tator Tot, who saved his life!

Pit Bull Puppy Saves 4 year-old Boy's Life

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Beauty Spotlight Team: Lisa Marie from Beauty Crazed picks her top Beautiful Blues

Once Lisamarie from Beauty Crazed starts writing (bad) poetry, you know it's time to put an end to our favourites lists - so please tolerate this last one from her and at least know that you have our next Beauty Spotlight series to look forward to where you will learn all the deep, dark and disturbing (yes, we're talking about Elvira) secrets from all the Beauty Spotlight ladies!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

The Beauty Spotlight Team: Prime Beauty Blog's Top 8 Hair Styling Products for BIG HAIR!

Prime Beauty Blog is wrapping up our "My Top" series with 8 hair styling products to pump up the volume in your hair. See what she chose to get BIG hair! 

The winner of the Original Moxie mini quad is...

Congratulations tara!
You have won yourself 4 Moxie Minis. Please email me at eyelineronacat at gmail dot com with your mailing address.

There were 5 items in your list. Here they are in random order:

  1. tara
  2. em
  3. poodle
  4. chelsea
  5. lavanya

Timestamp: 2013-10-19 08:11:52 UTC

Friday, October 11, 2013

Original Moxie Shape-Shifter Re-Forming Creme: a revelation [and a fabulous giveaway!]


One year ago, I shouted my love for indie beauty brand Original Moxie from the rooftops. Since then, Moxie is still a part of my everyday hair care routine, and what was once a terribly annoying mane continues to be actually fun to take care of. I will admit that it became more fun when I chopped off six inches of my hair in front of the bathroom mirror. The pics of me below are pre-chopfest. It's all about matching the right products to the right head of hair-- which as you all know, is no mean feat. The fun part comes in with this brand's mix n' match ethos: no one's hair is just one type. It can be a few things at once, and we all know our hair changes from day to day too, just to keep things interesting.

Today, I wanted to share my love for Shape Shifter-- my most recent discovery from Original Moxie. I've never in my life met a product that does SO many things. That is a common thread amongst almost all of Moxie's products: they are able to be used in multiple ways.  I have a dummy-proof brief tutorial below for my current favorite style-- using Shape Shifter on wet hair, and pinning curls against my head with duckbill clips. First, the do, then, I'll share everything else the aptly named Shape Shifter does for me.

I love the beach-tousled look, but my natural hair is too thick and heavy to hold waves-- Shape Shifter helps to form and hold the waves without looking or feeling wet or sticky. And that, my friends, is why I love it so. Below is a great recipe for pincurls on straight to wavy hair.

I wash my hair with Get Clean! Shampoo, which technically is a no-poo. It's got no sulfates, no suds, but it cleans incredibly well without stripping the natural oils from the hair that make it look great. In my case, suds = freakshow.  I use Intense Quench rinse-out conditioner in the shower as well, focusing on mid-shaft down to the ends-- especially the ends. After showering, I'll dab my hair with a towel just for a quick second, because Shape Shifter works best on very wet hair. First I'll apply a dab of Everyday Leave-In conditioner  (because it really detangles and adds moisture to ends), and finally a healthy dollop of Shape Shifter. I need about 10 duckbill clips to haphazardly pin curls to my head, and I do that by coiling the small section around my index finger.

Then, I wait! I'll keep them in anywhere from 1 hour to 4, depending on my mood. I remove the clips and instead of brushing, I flip my head upside-down and hand-tousle the curls. You have to do this to get the waves to look natural. This is really all you have to do from beginning to end! But because I love product and can't really stop, I like to let it dry out the rest of the way, then make a mixture of a little dab of the following products in the palm of my hand:
Oasis Moisture Gel, Shape Shifter and Everyday Leave-In Conditioner, and apply to my ends to seal them and any places where there's obvious broken strands, like at the crown of my head, and anywhere I've made a bad snip in the past while trimming my own hair-- all those places get hit with a little bit of my mixture.

The Oasis Moisture Gel is an all-purpose light conditioner with fruit  oils and sodium lactate-- it's fabulous as a treatment and a styling aid and I love it for slicking hair back without stiffness. The Everyday Leave-In is a conditioner with a thicker, creamier texture that I really need and love because my hair is so long and voluminous-- it helps me to control it and make it look pretty-- wet or dry. Along with the Get Clean! Shampoo, it's the one Original Moxie product I use more than any other.

Shape-Shifter is also fab on dry hair as well-- it controls frizz like a champ and it can deliver a really smooth, healthy-looking blowout. It's conditioning, non-sticky, gives definition- pliable, soft, and can be reactivated with water at any time. It takes ANY hair up or down a notch, depending on what the wearer is looking for. I can't really make super curly curls (but I've had that Keri Russell circa 1990s fantasy), I've found that Shape-Shifter is a godsend for hair in transition (which I guess is almost always!). Look at these cute wavy bangs! They will stay that way until I wash my hair again.

GUESS WHAT? It's giveaway time!
Original Moxie has generously offered a prize of 4 Moxie Minis to one lucky winner, so they can get this look or or many others:

Get Clean! No Foam Shampoo
Intense Quench Deep Conditioner
Everyday Leave-In Detangling Conditioner
Shape-Shifter Reforming Creme

All you have to do is comment on this post, and tell us what your greatest hair challenge is. The drawing will close one week from today, on Friday October 18th at 7pm Central time. Contest is open to US residents, as well as Canada and the UK. Winner will be chosen at random via random.org, and will be announced on this blog shortly after the closing of the contest.Winner should contact me by email with their information at eyelineronacat@gmail.com.

Good luck everyone, and thanks Rachel!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Original Moxie interview: OM Blog

Rachel Blistein, proprietress and hair genius behind Original Moxie (my most favorite hair care brand EVAH)  has done me the honor of interviewing me for her newly launched OM Blog.
Find out why I need bangs de-programming, and what drives a girl to chop off six inches of her own hair in the bathroom one desperate evening. Click the link below for the interview!

Hair Does Not A Lady Make

[And stay tuned for my own Original Moxie review & tutorial coming up tomorrow, plus an amazing giveaway!]

Saturday, October 5, 2013

The Beauty Spotlight Team: Visionary Beauty's Top Picks for Frizzy Hair

No matter how perfect your makeup, there's nothing better to ruin it than a bad hair day. With winter around the corner, it's the time for unmanageable, frizzy hair. Visionary Beauty gives us her top picks to say goodbye to frizz and hello to shiny and smooth.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Fashion and Fragrance: A Riot in Black and White [Roberto Cavalli + Geza Shoen]

I love fashion almost as much as perfume and beauty-- it all ties in together for me, which is why I was extremely pleased when Thomas (CandyPerfumeBoy) shared his chosen theme with the rest of our blogging group. Any excuse to explore these themes is just good old-fashioned fun for me.

For the past few seasons, I've been particularly impressed by Roberto Cavalli's black and white prints, which range from animal to Rorschach test inkblots to florals and leathers encrusted with sparkling embellishments. Sometimes the designs even veer towards Gaucho territory. It's a lot to take in at first glance, but it's not hard to settle into the groove of the design when you stick with it.

How I described the feeling of Cavalli's recent collections can easily be applied to fragrance, at least as I understand it. The clothes have a limited color palette-- black and white, but there are seemingly endless possibilities as far as where a design can be taken from there.  The minimalist palette does nothing to tame the explosiveness of the prints. This makes me think of raw scent elements, nothing too refined or complex. Something with teeth but not wings. One perfumer came to mind when I was looking over the Cavalli designs, and that's Geza Schoen. His work for biehl. parfumkunstwerke, gs02 from the Young Savages Collection in particular, could not be more perfect. The fragrance is clearly built on sin, but if that sounds like too much for you, don't tune out yet. It's far from overpowering, in fact, the way it seamlessly melds with my body chemistry is almost spooky. There's an effervescence at first that dissipates rather quickly, then its musk, spices and blackened aromatic elements become more active-- like a panther just awakened from a nap, or like the cork of a champagne bottle that's already been popped, and now it's time to get down.

 [gs02 just wants to ride its motorcycle without being hassled by "the man", man!]

The power and singular character of gs02 comes from its tribal earth tones. It's a gorgeous beast (with sharp teeth, no wings) that both women and men can easily wear. This is the fragrance you want to be wearing when that person you've had your eye on all night finally comes over and introduces themselves. This is also the fragrance that is a natural choice to wear to bed (take that however you want to), but I don't recommend sleeping in any of your Cavalli pieces.

Both the fashion and the fragrance I've paired together might just share the same dna. Emotional, red-blooded black and white; vibrant and very, very real and living. Is it dangerous? Definitely. And don't you forget it.

Please visit the blogs of the other participants in this group for more fashion and fragrance:
Candy Perfume Boy
Olfactoria's Travels
Fragrant Moments

[You can find biehl.parfumkunstwerke gs02 online at Lucky Scent as well as several other retailers in the US. A 100ml bottle is $195. Sample of fragrance was provided by company representative for my consideration]

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Sit On It, Citronella [a review of CBIHP 610 Outside]

There are, for all of us, a small handful of creative visionaries that we quietly revere for a multitude of reasons. For example, I have a photo of Haider Ackermann with Tilda Swinton as my computer wallpaper. I have a little surge of inspiration every time I see it. Christopher Brosius is also part of my elite special forces. His is not the loudest voice in perfumery, and certainly not on the flashy tip. He does, however hold what might be the most enviable of all descriptives, simply because it cannot be bought, won or inherited: authenticity. His work is filled with the sort of good humor that does not aim to alienate. The inside joke is that there's no inside joke.

CB's latest is a limited edition scent called 610 Outside-- it's a perfume that does double duty as an insect repellant. I jumped at the chance to try it. It's fresh, aromatic and sharp right after application, then mellows to a more shadowy, slightly saltier version of itself. The layers of herbs, citrus and resins begin to warm and bleed into the aether and they really harmonize to create the beautiful fougere that it is.

Outside also contains a particularly round sort of lavender (the likes of which my nose hasn't sniffed since the fruit and lavender explosion that is Vero Kern's Kiki). This is indeed a true fougere, but you'll not have an arid, dusty tinderbox on your hands. This is an impossibly lush fougere, while remaining  relatively subtle from start to end. You will probably have a hard time believing that bugs would even give it the side-eye. Truth be told, I never would have known had I not heard it first. I feel I can safely recommend this to anyone with a pulse, including: humans-- male or female, children, dogs and cats, and not even need to mention that it moonlights as a bona-fide bug repellant. But I'll say this-- I may not have spent too much time camping in the past.. uh... decade (I used to love primitive camping trips back in the day), but a childhood spent in a perpetual cloud of DEET is not easily forgotten. I'll be buying some of this to wear inside.

610 Outside is one of those fragrances that erases the need for any distinction between naturals and aromachemicals. Whether you're a country or a city mouse, I think you'll find that it just smells damned good, and that's what it's all about.

[Worth mentioning: the kitten who is the newest member of my family is named CB-- but was not initially meant as an homage to Christopher Brosius or American indie perfumery in general, (it actually stands for the Prince song Computer Blue), but I like to think of it that way now. She's Dr. Jekyll & Sister Hyde, anyway... multi-faceted just like the rest of us.]

610 Outside is available in two forms, which you will already be familiar with if you are a CBIHP fan: perfume absolute and water perfume. It is available at I Hate Perfume online, and while you're there, Mr. Brosius is in a bit of a pickle (read: time-sensitive crisis) and is offering some tasty benefactor packages for donations so he can get the store moved as quickly as possible. Visit their newly redesigned website and read more about that HERE.

[sample sent by company for my consideration]

Friday, June 14, 2013

The Cult of Gluttony: Parfums Viktoria Minya HEDONIST

I don't know about you, but I've always been a denizen in the cozy realm of excess. Maybe it's because I'm a Gen-Xer, or perhaps genetics, but I was certainly the result of a perfect storm.

For this group post, I chose the theme of The Seven Deadly Sins for me and my fellow bloggers, which quite honestly, is a topic that's always a lot of fun to meander through. I had to choose Gluttony, which led to the necessity of looking back over my lifetime so far and calculating the damage. Come to think of it, I see a few threads of Vanity to add more color to my story (as if it needs it).

An imaginative, richly nuanced fragrance called Hedonist emerged this year from Parfums Viktoria Minya, a new name on the scene. What makes the scent hedonistic? Well, I don't think it's the scent, exactly. It's where your mind goes once you've drawn it in a few times-- dangerous breaths that self-modify from long and deep to staccato. There is a tenuous balance present at all times, it's like watching a Slinky flip over itself again and again horizontally, and just when you think you've caught the perfect moment of jasmine and orange blossom, the kinetic flow changes; something nutty and rich pokes through and forces you to rethink it all. But the main emotion is always the same: insatiable hunger; a desire for more. The bottle presentation is equally opulent and rich (see below), and even the perfumer herself is an incredibly beautiful woman. So, yes, more of everything! Ripe fruits hint at impending decay, but it's all so sexy and maddening that you must relent-- this is limbo, luxury style. Hedonist has left a strong impression on me, and if I could bathe in it daily, you know that I would. It's sheer magic.

notes list: Rum, bergamot, peach, osmanthus absolute, orange flower absolute, jasmine absolute, tobacco, vanilla, cedarwood, vetiver

Hedonist is available for sale in the US at Luckyscent.com, a 45ml bottle is $195.


My attitude and experiences regarding excess in its familiar forms has always tied into the arts and pop culture, and Josh Homme of Queens of the Stone Age has long been a favorite icon of debauchery. Here are the ingredients that equal one Joshua Homme:
top notes of scanty inhibitions (if any), excessive talent and intelligence, heart is prone to overindulgence, justified swagger and base notes of self-loathing and self-awareness.
Homme's facile charm cloaks worlds of hurt and sickness, danger and pleasure beneath. It's the kind of truly self-deprecating, vain destructiveness that could only exist for our generation. The will and desire to cast it all into oblivion with copious amounts of whatever-- that's the quandary, the symptom and most definitely the solution.

"I got bruises and hickeys, stitches and scars
Got my own theme music, it plays wherever I are"
-from "Smooth Sailing", off Queens of the Stone Age's newest album, ...Like Clockwork

So how does perfume really tie into all of this? Well, if you're reading this, you probably experience at least some of the same lust and debauched habits with perfume as I do. In my head, when I listen to music and when I enjoy perfume, I lose myself in rapid-fire thoughts that spit out words and images. I try to document them. I try to tell the stories that are born from my comprehension of the art- stories that could not exist without consuming my fill of everything I desire. Maybe sin is part of my DNA, but shame is something I don't entertain. Those are the purest, truest moments of my life, and I treasure them.

Please visit my blogging partners and see how they mash up their perfumes and sins of choice:
Olfactoria's Travels
Fragrant Moments
The Candy Perfume Boy

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Aftelier Perfumed Beeswax Candles

Just when my frenzied passion for candles was waning enough to be in danger of cycling back to incense exclusively, Mandy Aftel launches three limited edition (of only 23) perfumed candles. They're each 3oz and burn for approximately 18 hours, they're hand-poured and made with 100% pure beeswax. If you were one of the lucky few to snag her candles that were available last holiday season, you know how special they are.

The votive vessels are exceedingly impressive on their own, with coiled strung glass seed beads in a color appropriate to the scent it's paired with. Each candle has a very distinct personality, and when they are lit, they blossom into their full glory.

A fine candle has a way of engaging multiple senses when it's lit, and when every detail has been carefully thought out and executed by hand with luxury in mind, the experience is unmatched. These Aftelier perfumed candles afford that rare experience, and in my opinion are not to be missed.

Lemon Basil ($35)
The fresh aromatic qualities of this blend makes it the most versatile of the three. Not just a kitchen candle, the brightness of lemon and the sharpness of basil together produce a sort of neon anisic quality that is not only delicious, but addictive too.

Campfire ($45)
Campfire is powerfully reminiscent of the real thing, with emphasis on the smokiness. The wax is a lovely shade of mahogany and the vessel's seed bead embellishment is red, which further enhances the coziness of the scent. You don't even need to light this candle to scent the room-- its diffusiveness is very impressive. Campfire is a rich, woody trip down memory lane for former summer campers. Just bring your own lanyard-making supplies and fixins for S'mores.

Root Beer Candy (circa 1972) ($35)
Lastly, there's Root Beer Candy, my favorite. It definitely smells like the real thing, and it's worth mentioning that the "circa 1972" part was aptly used to qualify the name. Old-school root beer barrel candies have a certain flavor to them that I could never have dreamed could be captured in a candle fragrance, but it's all there. A little sweet, a lot sassafrass-y, and a pure, unexpected delight. On a related note, if this were available in perfume form, I'd wear it ALL the time.

All three limited edition perfumed candles are available for purchase at Aftelier.com right now, but fair warning: there are only 23 of each to go around. If you pick just one to buy, don't worry, you really can't go wrong. These are a major treat for anyone who enjoys creating a warm and inviting living space. The cheerful disposition of these scents come through even when they're not lit, as they are very highly fragranced.

[samples sent to me by the creator for my consideration]