Monday, 7 January 2013

Lady In Red

I just wanted to wish you all a happy new year and I hope that you're all having fun wherever you are. I had the most low-key Christmas ever and I basically spent the entire day enjoying my 'Alias' marathon on Netflix. I also went to see 'Les Miserables' in the evening and I thought it was fantastic. It was unashamedly sentimental but it had some great performances and I'll definitely be seeing it again soon (after 'Django Unchained').

I'll leave you with an OOTD and FOTD from this past Sunday when I was actually in the Christmas spirit. I wore this great cropped jacket from Forever21 (!) and I loved it so much that I wore it again on new year's eve with my Christie Brown necklace.

Wearing my beloved NARS "Dragon Girl" lip crayon with MAC's "Ruby Woo" on top
Sleek's "Coral" blush on my cheeks
Urban Decay's "Sin" and "Zero" eyeshadows on my lids
Ha! Please excuse my ghetto pose in the following pic but at least you can see my shoes....

Jacket: Forever 21
Top: Forever 21
Jeans: Burlington Coat Factory
Bag: vintage Stuart Weitzman
Here's another one with new hair and a different look exactly a week later for new year's eve:

Mat Velvet+ matifying foundation in #75 Coffee (Make Up For Ever)
LA Girl HD concealer in "Fawn"
Mineralize Skinfinish Natural Powder in "Dark" (under eyes) and "Dark Deep" (whole face) (MAC)
"Taos" blush (NARS)Lips
"Bare it all" lipstick (Wet 'n' Wild)
"Doug" lipgloss (Urban Decay)
Loose pigment in "silver pearl" (NYX
Eye crayon in "black bean" (NYX)
"Zephyr", "Crystal" and "Skimp" eyeshadows (Urban Decay)
"Vanity Palette" (Wet 'n' Wild)
False lashes (Miss Adoro)

Jacket: Forever21
Top: Talbots
Necklace: Christie Brown

Hope you all had a wonderful festive period and here's to great things in 2013!

Love and life,

Nana Adomah


Friday, 30 November 2012

'The half-life of love is forever'- This Is How You Lose Her Review

As much as I love makeup and fashion, books will always come first in my heart. I feel like I haven't read any decent, meaty books in a while so I took a day off this week to do just that.

This Is How You Lose Her by the Dominican-American author Junot Diaz was an excellent choice to thrust me back into the literary world. I'd been meaning to read some Diaz for a few years now and my brother even gave me a copy of the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao to read this Summer. Lethargy and general laziness prevented me from actually reading it but I remembered Diaz when I was looking for a book to read this week.

TIHYLH is a collection of short stories which all (bar one) have the protagonist Yunior in common. On the surface, this is a book about cheating but Diaz's writing goes so much deeper than that. This is also a book about masculinity, patriarchy, grief, relationships, and yes, as cliched as it is, "the immigrant experience".

Yunior is really quite an unlikeable character but by the end of the book you can't help but fall a little bit in love with him. Diaz's writing made me feel as if I'd truly lived with these characters. Diaz's writing is startlingly authentic and his use of slang, both English and Spanish, does not come across as forced in any way. His writing is littered with expletives and obscenities but you really feel as though they add to the texture of his stories.  Diaz has a poet's ear and his writing is utterly sublime. He manages to sum up the exact moment when you know a relationship is on the downward slope perfectly:

'And that's when I know it's over. As soon as you start thinking about the beginning, it's the end.'

I know I'm drooling now but the final story 'The Cheater's Guide To Love' was an exhilarating read. It's a story about cheating, heartbreak, and its consequences and it stays with you long after you turn the final page. In fact, I was so loathe to leave Yunior and his family behind that I'm currently in the middle of reading Drown, Diaz's first short story collection published in 1996 which also has Yunior as its protagonist. I've been told that I should have have read Diaz's books in chronological order as they all have Yunior as the narrator but I didn't feel as though I was missing out on anything major when I read TIHYLH.

I could go on about this book forever but this has already gone on longer than I intended it to. I'll leave you with a short passage from which we get the title of the book. Yunior has just been caught cheating (for the nth time) from his girlfriend reading his journal:

"Instead of lowering your head and copping to it like a man, you pick up the journal as one might hold a baby's beshatted diaper, as one might pinch a recently benutted condom. You glance at the offending passages. Then you look at her and smile a smile your dissembling face will remember until the day you die. Baby, you say, baby, this is part of my novel.
This is how you lose her."
Junot Diaz

Love and great books,

Nana Adomah

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Lime And Fur

Yes, this OOTD is about 3 weeks late but better late than never eh? We were having a bit of a cold spell so I took the opportunity to bust out my tattered "fur".

I went full-on with the makeup too. It was just that kind of day. I used my oft-neglected Sleek "Storm" palette and had "Jubilee" by MAC on my lips. I'm still not convinced that nude lipstick suits me but I had no other option with that heavy eye makeup.

Dress: Custom-made by my seamstress in Ghana
Blazer: Talbots
Bag: Zara
Shoes: Charlotte Russe
Fur Collar: New Look

I had a wonderful Thanksgiving which was made all the better with a visit from my sister from another mother (hey Aks!) all the way from London. Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving too.

Love and joy,

Nana Adomah

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Mini Urban Decay Haul

Urban Decay were having a sale a couple of weeks ago and I snapped up a few items (from the dregs) just before it ended.

I bought two of their eyeshadows in "YDK" and "Dashiki", a lipstick in "Confession" and a lip gloss in "Stung".

Urban Decay eyeshadows are my all-time favourite and since I already own 4 of their palettes, I definitely do not need any more. However, these were on sale for just $6 each and since they're usually around $18 I couldn't pass them up.

L-R: YDK and Dashiki 
"YDK" is a gorgeous light brown with frost/ medium shimmer, while "Dashiki" is a true frosted blue. Both of these colours are like butter and apply like an absolute dream. Urban Decay eyeshadows are typically incredibly soft, with excellent pigmentation and these two are no different. "YDK" suffers from a little bit of fall-out but nothing compared to the glitter bombs that Urban Decay can sometimes produce.

"YDK" on my lids with a touch of "Dashiki" in the crease. 
I also picked up a lipstick in "Confession" and a lip gloss in "Stung" which were $3 and $4 respectively (original prices- $22 and $12). 

They are both very dark, which is all the rage for Autumn/ Winter, but quite sheer and buildable. They are also both non-sticky and feel very nice and moisturising on the lips. My only gripe is that "Stung" could be more pigmented and I am not a fan of the overly honeyed smell.

One layer of "Confession" on my lips with no lip liner

Urban Decay have always had quite quirky packaging and I absolutely love the packaging of the lipstick. It's all very reminiscent of the legend of King Arthur pulling the sword out of the stone and it's reassuringly weighty in the hand.

Overall, I was very pleased with my purchases (particularly the eyeshadows) and they were an absolute steal at under $20. There are still a few sale items available on the Urban Decay website so definitely give it a look.However, unless you're a huge fan of glitter, I suggest bypassing any eyeshadows that have "sparkle" in their description. These eyeshadows tend not to be UD's best....

Until next time,

Nana Adomah

Friday, 19 October 2012

REVIEW: Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet+ Foundation

I feel like I've been foundation shopping all year in a quest to discover the perfect foundation. I've tried so many different foundations and many times I thought I'd found "the one", only to be cruelly disappointed when they slid off my face before the end of the day. I found a few that I loved but they all seemed to be missing a little something. Estee Lauder Double Wear Light was great but I was in between colours and who's got the time (and money) to be mixing two $35+ foundations every day? Urban Decay's Naked Foundation was also good but I wanted a little bit more coverage. Lancome's Teint Idole gave me almost everything I wanted but in the end it was just pipped to the post by...


Okay, that's quite enough drama. I purchased the Mat Velvet+ from Sephora last week after trialling it for a couple of weeks. I'd been wanting to try this foundation for a long time but since Makeup Forever is so difficult to find in the UK, I had to wait until I was in America. I really like the consistency because it's quite creamy without being too thick. It's medium-full coverage and it's easily built up. It also lives up to its claims and lasts for a full day. I have a very oily t-zone and even though my nose would get oily again in a few hours, the rest of my face remained generally matte.
However, once I actually had the full-size product in my hand, I almost didn't buy it because it looked absolutely tiny. $36 for that dinky bottle? With the persuasion of my (bad) friends Rachel and Vanessa, I bought it anyway and imagine my shock when I took it home and discovered that it was
the same amount of product as my MAC, Revlon, and E.L.F foundations (1.01 oz). Appearances really are deceiving and you only need a very small amount for a full face. My shade is #75 (not very imaginative MUFE) and although it applies a tiny bit too fair, it oxidises slightly to my perfect shade.

Excellent coverage
Small size makes it very portable
A little goes a long way
Does not contain SPF so you avoid that awful white cast that can appear in pictures

Doesn't contain SPF (haha! Contradictory, I know)
The price may be a little steep for some
Dries very quickly so you have to be super fast when blending
Rubberized packaging picks up dirt easily

In summary, I am very happy with this purchase and I definitely recommend anybody looking for a non-oily foundation to at least try a sample.

The MUFE Mat Velvet+ Matifying Foundation can be purchased from Sephora.

Until next time,

Nana Adomah


Thursday, 18 October 2012

FOTD: Orange Crush

I've been having a mini love affair with orange lately. I've also been trying to use some of my make-up that I haven't touched in a while- "shopping my stash" if you will. To that end, I decided to build a daytime look around my MAC "Firespot" eye shadow, which I got a few years ago in the Moonbathe collection.

I paired the orange-y eyes with one of my favourite blushes 'Taj Mahal" by Nars, slapped on some pink lip gloss, and I was good to go.

Mat Velvet+ matifying foundation in #75 Coffee (Make Up For Ever)Lustre drops in "sun rush" (MAC)
Pro Longwear concealer in NW40 (MAC)
Mineralize Skinfinish Natural Powder in "Dark" (under eyes) and "Dark Deep" (whole face) (MAC)
"Taj Mahal" blush (NARS)

Lids- "Firespot" (MAC)
Crease- "Vanity" palette (Wet 'n' Wild)
HIghlight- "Ricepaper" (MAC)

Lower lashline- "Antiqued" (MAC)
Eyeliner- Waterproof velvet touch eyeliner in 'black ink" (GOSH)
Supercurl curling mascara (Urban Decay)

Luscious liquid lipstick in "Raspberry" (E.L.F)

I think orange is a nice change from the usual golds and bronzes and it works well the whole year round. Would you rock orange eyeshadow?

Until next time,

Nana Adomah

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

OOTD: Stylish Strands (Christie Brown)

Christie Brown is a brand founded by Ghanaian designer Aisha Obuobi and they've become known for cutting-edge fashion with an African twist. I've wanted a Christie Brown necklace for a few years now and I was finally able to get my hands on one over the summer. However, this gorgeous necklace stayed in my closet for months because I had no idea how to style it....

My friend C gave me a last-minute invitation to her friend's fashion show in downtown Atlanta and I hurriedly threw on the necklace in an attempt to jazz up the most boring outfit in the world. Loads of people stopped me to ask where it was from so it can't have looked that bad. Even my cousin, who hated this necklace when I first bought it, conceded that it was "quite cool".
Necklace- Christie Brown
Blazer- Talbots
Clutch- Ted Baker
Wedge booties- New Look
Jeans- can't remember....
The multi-strand necklace is super long (almost knee-length) and each strand is made from a patterned Ghanaian cloth. I absolutely adore it and I'm looking forward to styling it in different ways. Do check out the Christie Brown website as they have some fantastic clothes and accessories. Their new A/W 2012 collection is a particular favourite.

So what do you think? Yay or nay?

Until next time,

Nana Adomah