As a mum, makeup artist, and PIXI creator, my life is bursting at the seams with inspirations & impressions. I live my life by the motto “live love & laugh” and whether I am working or focusing on my family, I try to infuse passion and creativity into everything I do. Here I hope to share with you some of my ideas of all things beautiful.
With love, Petra

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Shopping for the Season

As the holidays are approaching fast, I have started the daunting task of shopping for gifts. I consider myself very lucky to have family & friends that love the same things I do - needless to say, I think they have very good taste :)

I wanted to share some of the goodies I found at Target & Target.com. It's my favorite place to shop since it's so convenient and I can get everything I need in one place - talk about a timesaver for busy moms!

Here are some of the things that I'll be looking to gift for the holidays...


My Mother (60’s)

Pixi Fake Awake Kit $28.00
My mother is a bit of a makeup minimalist so this kit is perfect for her. Concealer duo, cream brightener, cream highlighter, flesh coloured powder & peachy powder, cheek & lip stain and a luminous gloss – it has all she needs in a travel friendly kit.
She'll love the awakening look it gives – she has not had much sleep since she had me when she was 17 years old (and then had 4 more monsters after that)!


My Mother-in-Law (90 this year, sharp, strong & loves pampering treats!)

Comfort Products Foot Massager $19.90
What a luxury – when she sits down to read at night she can get a foot massage at the press of a button!


My Sisters (30’s)

Simply Shabby Chic Etched Bath Coordinates $9.99-$29.99
I fell in love with these vintage-looking bathroom deluxe organizers – I'm sure my sisters will too!


My Girlfriends (40’s)

Pixi Get Gorgeous Kit $30
Some of my all-time favorite Pixi products are in this set which contains:
  • Succulent Lip Twin in Opal Orchid
  • Endless Silky Eye Pen in BlackNoir
  • Fairy Light Solo in Boho Bronze
  • Beauty Blush in Perkiest Pink
This Target.com exclusive set won't be seen ever again and is an amazing value, so grab one while it's in stock!


My Pregnant Friends (20-40’s)

Weleda Body Oil Essential Kit $14.99
Body oils are so luxurious for soon-to-be-moms to use. I think I definitely need one of these myself as well, even though I'm definitely not pregnant!


My Son’s Girlfriend (early 20’s)

Soho Picadilly Beauty case $32.99
We all know it's hard to keep your makeup organized, but this traincase helps a lot. Trendy & practical with room for lots of makeup – what’s not to love?!


My Teenage Niece (15-ish)

Pretika SonicDermbrasion Facial Brush $45.99
This is great to teach teenage girls the importance of taking care of your skin from an early age. 
Deep cleansing and massaging of skin is the key to clear & healthy skin, and it's an important step in making any makeup you apply after look as good as it can.


My Preteen Niece (8-ish)


Lip Smacker Party Pack in Skittles $8.79
My view is no real makeup before 13 (and at 13 it’s a must to buy them a makeup lesson to learn age appropriate makeup from a professional). Lip balm or nail colour is ok.
These flavoured lip balms are nice because girls can play around with them but they are not too “makeup-y”. We want to keep them being little girls as long as possible! They grow up too fast nowadays!

My Baby Nieces (the last of my many nieces :) 2 cutie pies just arrived in my family!)

California Baby Shampoo & Bodywash
Love this natural baby brand – and love the calming lavender for baths before bedtime.
It even comes with a bubble blower so they are easily distracted when you want to wash their hair! :) What a genius idea!

You have to love being able to get the majority of your gifts in one place!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Festive Fuchsia

I woke up this morning with these thoughts in my head...
  • Start my holiday gift list (I can't leave it to the last minute again!)
  • I must be more patient with my 4-year old!
  • I need to calm down! Don’t jump out of bed and run all day - walk & think!
  • I dreamt about buying another house - a “fixer” of course - and my husband promptly asked for a divorce...in my dream, that is. PHEW!
  • I must stop watching TV – it’s annoying me more & more
  • I should really call my mom more often
  • I'm lusting after every shade of bright pink in makeup right now!

Winter Brightener Must-Haves

As we go into winter with its cold weather & dry air, there are some tricks that I always use, year in & year out.


If you - like me - love the idea of luminous & perfect-looking skin and have never found it, here is your solution: Pixi Brightening Primer. It contains real pearl extract for maximum luminosity & humectants for a lovely dewy glow. Use under moisturizer if you have dry/normal skin and instead of moisturizer if you have normal/oily skin, massaging all over face including eye area and lips. 

Another must-have for this time of year Eye Bright Liner - it's my personal behind-the-scenes magic product to looking wide-awake, even when it's very early or when I am jet-lagged. It's a flesh-coloured inner rim liner that is waterproof and turns red eyes into bright white! I consistently use this on photo shoots and in everyday life.


Brighten Up the Night

Believe it or not, getting ready for a November party can be done in 5 minutes - all you need is a fresh fuchsia lip & a simple defined eye!

Here's what I do for a quick change from daytime to nighttime.


How to get the pretty pink look above:
  1. Even out skintone with your favourite foundation - a velvety finish works well here.
  2. Apply black eye liner & smudge with fingers, following with several coats of mascara to top and bottom lashes.
  3. Look for the brightest pink lip colour you can find - apply to lips with your fingertip & blend the excess onto apples of the cheeks.
  4. Pull your hair back into a ponytail & spray with hairspray. Brush down stray hairs with an old toothbrush & and brush through brows at the same time.




I love a statement dress to go with this look, and some elegant (but not "break-the-bank" expensive at $78) earrings - the more sparkly, the better! I find that by putting on some eye-catching earrings, you can look festive & glowing whilst bringing light to your face.

As fun as it is, socializing can be tiring, and there is no better way to relax & recharge than a hot bath.


Primp & Pamper

 
Here is a sneak peek into my vanity & some of my all-time favorite pampering products:
    Buy them at
    • Savon de Marseille Extra Pur Rose hand soap - So luxurious & never dries out my hands.
    • Ren Moroccan Rose Otto Bath Oil - So nourishing for dry skin.


    • Weleda Wild Rose Deodorant - I use natural products whenever I can, and this is one of my favorites!
    • L'Artisan Drôle de Rose perfume - A powdery vintage rose scent with a hint of violet. Very pretty, feminine & flowery.
    • Pixi Rose Eau de Parfum - My own signature perfume that I created 6 years ago in the UK for my store. Very fresh, clean and light with a single rose note. Perfect for spritzing all over after shower/bath for that “super-clean” smell that we are all looking for.


    Get Decléor at 
    • Decléor Aroma White C+ Brightening Cleansing Oil - Removes all makeup & brightens skin without drying.
    • Decléor Aromessence Angélique - I love to smooth a few drops onto face in the evening after cleansing. This nourishing serum oil is doing wonders for my skin right now! Smells delicious too!
    Speaking of relaxing evening routines, I love to watch the sunsets at our local beach - it instantly puts me at ease.


    The colours of the California sunset are so gorgeous that I had to capture some of those colours and use them in a Pixi kit.

    Our biggest kit ever, the Ultimate Beauty Kit, is a very limited edition and an amazing value.
    I like to think of it as your perfect home boudouir with a great big mirror and tons of colours to try that you may never have thought to buy individually. 


    Although this kit will last you long through winter, it has some great rosy shades that are perfect to perk you up in the cold weather! 

    As this kit is HUGE, its sheer size & colour selection can be intimidating. Here are some comments from Ultimate Beauty Kit users:

    Young Grandma (66 years old, blonde with blue eyes)
    • Loves that it has such a big mirror so you see your whole face when doing your makeup
    • Is usually wary of dark shades in order to avoid “raccoon eyes” but is pleasantly surprised that she loves the kit's deep plummy brown liner shades
    • Always uses the grey eye shades on the top right side and the shimmery light peach & cream shades on the left side
    • Applies shimmery blushes for added glow - likes to switch up blush colours daily
    Natural Mom (45 years old, brunette with green eyes)
    • Loves the purples & pink shades that bring out the green in her eyes 
    • Mainly uses mid-toned eye shades on the eye lids and some highlighters 
    • Likes coordinating cheek colour to eye colour to lip colour (example: if wearing pink eye shadow, likes a nude-pink blush with a rose lip) 
    • Lines eyes with deep plum eye shade will try the deep purple as liner next 
    • Prefers lip colour to be rosy or pink, but will now try the plums and reds included in the kit
    Minimal Teenager (16 years old, brunette with hazel eyes)
    • Doesn’t use eye shades on the lid much – uses them more as liners/accent colour and plays around, mixing a few together for a unique coloured liner
    • Likes the dark matte browns, uses as both eye liners and brow colours
    • Likes a nude, more natural lip paired with the coloured eye liners so as not to look overdone
    • Uses bronzer from kit all over & to contour face
    • Loves light shimmer/glimmer on top of cheekbones & browbones and in inner corner of the eyes
    Thinking of the colours in this kit & the landscape it was inspired by brings me back to my roots in Sweden, where winter colours are few but vivid.

    Perhaps it's time to start designing a new kit :)



    Friday, October 7, 2011

    Chocolate Charm

    Now that autumn is officially here, I think it’s time to cozy up and enjoy some home comforts – for me, staying in is definitely the new going out, and brown is the new black!
    A good book, warm blanket, fire crackling, scented candle burning and a good quality bar of chocolate and I’m in heaven. It’s the little luxuries in life that count!

    We all know that the taste of chocolate is amazing, but even the smell is delicious & it's calorie-free! A quality scented candle can warm up a room in seconds and instantly adds a homey feel.




    Get a similar one at http://www.shopatsula.com/

    On those days that don't require me to wear a silk dress – which, as a working mother, happens to be most days :) – I still love to work the warmth of chocolate colours into my accessories.




    Over to my favorite subject: beauty! Shades of chocolate brown are some of my all-time favorite makeup colours – the hue suits all skintones and is soft but defining at the same time.

    Cocoa Nails



    This colour is the perfect brown for fall nails. Classy & sophisticated, but with an edge

    A Product Is Born

    I often get asked what inspires my makeup products, and the reply is – everything! Anything can spark an idea – I see products everywhere. I'm a little nutty for product design and even dream about it!

    Our Pixi Nude Shade Wardrobe is a good example of when I got inspired by something we have all seen. The packaging & pattern were inspired by a Swedish chocolate bar – and it's the size of a large piece of chocolate!


    Although I don't watch much television, I have to admit that my guilty pleasure (other than chocolate) is "Keeping Up With the Kardashians". The dynamic between the sisters is so hilarious – I have two sisters, so the drama & entertainment is easily related to when we watch the show.


    I get a strong feeling of chocolate HAIR envy when I see these ladies – how do they get their hair to look lacquered & glossy but still soft? I've tried to get this effect by soaking my hair with lemon, beer, you name it – I won't give up and when I figure it out I'll let you know!

    Besides the gorgeous hair, I also LOVE the smoky cocoa eyes that Khloe, Kim and Kourtney often sport.

    One of the secrets of this look is to choose a chocolate brown eyeliner in the right hue of brown with the right undertone.

    How to choose the best chocolate brown eyeliner:
    1. Find one without red or orange in it – look for a neutral or grey undertone. Reddish tones in a brown eyeliner (which most have) can make you look tired.
    2. Always try the liner colour on your skin – it will look different in the packaging than it does on the skin. You may need a shade darker than you think.
    2. If you like a bit of glimmer in your chocolate liner, try to find one that has gold pearl pigment – it's most flattering for all eye colours and skintones.
    3. Find the perfect black-based brown and use it as an everyday essential. I love love love our Endless Silky Eye Pen in BlackCocoa for this - it's a bestseller and is softer than black for daytime.
    4. Buy a waterproof formula so you don’t have to worry about smudging or touch-ups all day.



    Soft-Focus Smoky Brown


    How to create this timeless look with ONE product - Pixi Lid&Line in Smoky Brown:
    1. Use "Line" end to line upper lash line with in short strokes, as close to the lash roots you can get - press the pen downward & “dot” into lash roots from above. Focus most of the colour from the middle of eye to the outer corner.
    2. Repeat on the lower lash line. Apply very gently to create a soft line – start at outer corner and go all the way to the last lash at the inner corner.
    3. Now use the "Smudge" end to blur the lines.
    4. Take "Lid" end and press the tip onto liner on upper lash line. Run the powder just above the liner, onto the lid as well & blend. Repeat on the lower lash line.
    5. To take this soft smoky look from day to night, simply take the powder shadow from the "Lid" end and apply into the crease of the eye & blend - the higher & closer to the brow you go, the more smoky definition you get.
    6. Add your favorite mascara and you are done!

    Pick up this 3-in-1 (liner + shadow + blender) essential at http://www.pixibeauty.com/product.aspx?productMasterID=834

      Let's move on from all the glamour & shopping to some eating! Yum!
       
      The great news about chocolate is that it not only tastes good, it also has some AMAZING beauty & health benefits!


      A quality piece of chocolate:
      • provides lots of antioxidants
      • is rich in minerals
      • can actually lower blood pressure
      • contains healthy fats

      My husband & I consider ourselves quite the chocolate experts and we want to hereby announce our winner for the best chocolate bar – Green & Black's Almond Milk Chocolate bar. (It was fun testing them all!)



      Body Butter Buttons

      Finally, I just got these goodies from LUSH & now I'm off to bribe my husband into giving me a massage! Wish me luck :)

      Blog Awards 2011

       

      Our little blog has been nominated for the Cosmopolitan UK blog awards. I am so honored to be included with so many other great blogs!

      Click the link below, enter your email address, and go to the "brand" category to vote - it takes seconds & is very much appreciated!

      Wednesday, August 24, 2011

      Terracotta Tan

      Terracotta - encompassing hues from peach to bronze, this colour is gorgeous for both home & beauty.

      Living in a Spanish-style house in Southern California, I am constantly surrounded by terracotta and I think it’s taking over my life…I see hues from softest peach to deepest bronze everywhere – and I’m LOVING it! It’s so far removed from my comfort zone in home design that is usually a mix of antique white, pale blues & greens and Gustavian grey – all very Swedish. Now I just have to embrace my exotic side, which I’m sure is in there somewhere!

      Go to www.rugsandmore.com for similar wall art - this one is an antique bedcover!

      Find this & other cute comforters at http://www.target.com/

      As much as I love the warmth that terracotta gives to the items in my home, the effect is even more stunning on the skin.

      Usually we talk about bronzers a lot in the spring when we all need a quick pick-me-up – that’s probably when you are at your palest and need very gentle, soft colour. Now, at the end of August, you may have been in the sun and your skin is probably slightly deeper in tone. The correct bronzer will prolong your summer-fresh skin and keep you looking healthy & outdoorsy well into fall.

      I’ve been asked many times what is the secret to the perfect bronze look - you need to know about 2 basic things to avoid buying the wrong product: colour & texture. Once you have the right product, you need to know how to use it and maximize its potential through correct application.
      Let’s clear up the bronzing mysteries once and for all!


      Colour
      It may seem obvious, but the main point of bronzer is to make you look like you do when you have been in the sun. Try to find a neutral colour that is not too orange or too grey on your skintone. Peach undertones work well for medium to light skin and rose and gold undertones work well for medium to olive skin.
      When doing my own makeup, I tend to choose warm honey beige undertones with a hint of gold, peach or pink – I have a medium olive skintone that tans easily without going red.
      · Always test a new bronzer colour on your jawline. The bronzer should naturally blend into your skintone & give it warmth - 1 shade deeper than your skintone usually does the trick.
      · If it looks too orange, you are trying on a bronzer too dark for your skintone.
      · If it makes your skin look ashy and tired, you need to find a deeper bronzer color to try.
      · Always check your face in daylight and wait 5-10 minutes to make sure that the product does not change colour on your skin after application.




      Texture
      By texture, I mean the consistency of the product – this affects the final look on the skin.


      1. Powder – Pressed or loose, this is easy to control during application and great for normal to oily skin. The most popular form of bronzer, powders are easy and quick to apply all over.
      Application: Lightly swirl a medium-sized firm powder brush into bronzer and tap off excess. For an all-over sun kissed effect, buff along jawline and hairline using tight, circular motions. Swirl brush in bronzer & tap off excess again, and now sweep brush onto cheekbones, nose, forehead, chin and neck.


      2. Cream & mousse – This is great for dry skin. The result is a plump & dewy skin-like finish, and the look is very natural.
      Application: Tap colour onto cheekbones with your fingertips or nylon brush & blend well. Smooth any leftover colour onto eyelids & lips.

      3. Gel & liquid – These have great staying power and look sheer and natural on skin. They feel fresh and are great for those with normal skin. Easy-to-blend and easy-to-build colour from sheer to more sunkissed, gels & liquids also work well to add some colour to lips.
      Application: Dab onto clean skin with fingers and blend well. Apply to cheeks, eyelids and lips - it will stay on until you wash it off. 

      The look above is all about the texture of bronzer - there is no powder here. This sun kissed skin's translucent & natural look is achieved with a fluid bronzing gel. Pixi Sheer Cheek Gel in Sun Kissed is my go-to product for a "no-makeup" look.
      It is designed to provide the most believable bronze: it's tan with a hint of red to make it look like real skin. Apply as suggested above in gel texture section, or mix it with tinted moisturizer for a super natural effect. 


      Completing the Bronze Look - Lips


      My current favorite gloss is Aqua Lacquer from Pop Beauty. It's so silky & light, but still plumps lips and fills in fine lines beautifully. 


      Completing the Bronze Look - Eyes



      To do stunning eyes with a sun kissed look, you don't have to do a lot to get maximum impact:
      1. Use an eye primer from lash root to just below eye brow.
      2. Contour eyes slightly with Fairy Light Solo in Warm Autumn, blending into the crease and slightly outward at outer corner. 
      3. Swish Fairy Light Solo in Champagne Glow all over lid and dot into inner corner of eye. 
      4. Line eyes, following the lash line, with Lid& Line in Smoky Bronze and blend shadow into the line & slightly above.
      5. Curl lashes and apply 2 coats of mascara to upper and lower lashes.


      Healthiest Honey


      I love to use honey-hued blushes as bronzers - this works especially well for those with fairer skin who have a hard time finding cheek colours or bronzers that look natural. This is a very soft way to add a warm glow to the skin.


       
      And what could possibly be a more beautiful accent to your late-summer sun kissed skin than a deep peachy dress?
      Find more Johnny Was at http://www.zappos.com/johnny-was

      What I love about this Johnny Was dress is that you can dress it up with colourful jewelery and high heels or keep it really casual in sandals and some bangles. I also love that it comes with a slip dress to layer under if you want.

      With this dress I need to show some leg…this dry oil takes away my not-so-attractive snake skin legs and transforms them into Brazilian Gisele legs…well almost!
      As summer winds down, I am reminded to relax & enjoy life...my orangey-bronze coin purse below shows my favorite motto.


      Thursday, July 14, 2011

      Summer Strawberry

      I woke up this morning with these thoughts in my head…
      Grow my own herbs for the kitchen
      Buy somebody a coffee
      Be a little crazy! (that shouldn’t be too hard!)
      Treasure things until they fall apart
      Take some time off
      Love my husband

      And most of all, EAT STRAWBERRIES!!!

      I’m Swedish and nothing screams summer in Sweden like sun-ripened strawberries, preferably picked and eaten right in the strawberry field.

      My sister sent me the photo below – this is her strawberry “field” right now at her cottage in the Swedish countryside. So delicious!


      And did you know – I didn’t – that strawberries are a real super food? They have higher levels of vitamin C, fiber, folate and potassium than most other fruits like bananas, apples and even oranges…



      Grandma’s Homemade Strawberry Cordial

      What you need:
      8.5 cups strawberries
      1.5 cups water
      2.5 cups sugar
      The juice of 4 fresh lemons
      0.5 cup elderflower cordial (optional sometimes hard to find)

      How to:
      Boil strawberries for 15 minutes. Squash them against the edge of the pan as they boil.
      Tie a muslin cloth over a large bowl. Pour strawberry & water mixture on top and let the liquid strain through. 
      Discard strawberry solids.
      Bring the liquid back to boil for another 15-20 minutes.
      Add lemon juice, sugar, and elderflower cordial.
      For a lighter version, just leave out the sugar.
      Let cool and mix with water at a ratio of 1 part syrup to 5 parts water this recipe makes approximately 4 cups of syrup (bottle this and keep in refrigerator). 
      Enjoy! 

      Although the homemade kind is the best, you can buy strawberry cordial from IKEA’s Swedish food department – you can get Swedish cinnamon buns there as well!

      Well, moving swiftly on from all of this eating and drinking! Phew must have been hungry this morning!…

      My life and work has always been filled with colour – I’m obsessed with it and one of my favorites is strawberry red. It’s such a great, happy colour – it just screams confidence, joy & flirtatiousness.
      Although it can be a hard hue to wear from head to toe, it’s the perfect accent colour.


        
      I found this vintage handbag in one of my favorite antique stores in Carpenteria – it was just too pretty to resist, classic '50s design in red croc embossed leather.

      The ballet shoes I bought in Nordstrom a few summers ago so stylish and comfortable in red patent leather – LOVE!

      A very easy way to accessorize & play with strawberry red is to try red-tinted lips.
      I created this look for a shoot we did, using strawberry red lips as the focal point for a stunning effect. 



      Above, I teamed the strawberry lip with an illuminating tinted moisturizer, gold-beige eye shadow, very natural lashes – more like a lash tint – and a honey-hued blush colour on the cheekbones.

      It’s the prettiest summer makeup every year!  

      More juicy reds...



      The marker pen above was used on the model. It’s the perfect red and, since you can apply it very sheerly or layer to your desired intensity, it suits everybody. It also stays on and on – and will not leave a mark on your strawberry cordial glass!

      And for you girls out there still saying “I can’t wear red lips” just take a look at these lovely ladies…


      Ok, so they are unusually gorgeous BUT they show that red lips look gorgeous on all colorings and brighten up the whole face. 

      I like to dab on the colour, pushing it into lips with my finger - this way it looks stained, tinted and more natural. Then blend whatever is left on your finger onto the apples of the cheeks.

      Now that we have the lips sorted out – it’s time to liven up the footsies with a great luminous red nail colour...


      This nail polish was inspired in texture and colour by this amazingly cute VW in the perfect strawberry hue any girl’s dream car!

      I also just bought the dream makeup bag & organizer. 

      I love that this one has lots of transparent pockets and the colour is perfect for my strawberry red summer mood!