Living    Wednesday, February 26, 2003

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Sultry or neutral, it's all about the eyes

Nadra Kareem
El Paso Times


Photos by Yasmin A. Aboytes / El Paso Times

Al Varela, right, applied "Torrid" blush by Nars to Rocio Esquivel's cheeks as part of the new makeup line for spring at his studio.


Esquivel shows off the finished work.


Find that look 

   Al Varela's Cosmetics:

5857 Mesa, Suite No. 22.      Information: 833-0179. 

Sally Beauty Supply: 201 S. Americas, 858-8587; 8500 Dyer, 751-8015; 10501 Gateway West, 595-0735; 5933 N. Mesa, 584-5712; 5640 Montana, 772-5924; 109 E. San Antonio, 533-7916; 8111 N. Loop, 591-8034; 1478 George Dieter, 857-9022; 10600 N. Loop, 790-2235;


Natural and sexy, these are the looks that will dominate spring makeup this year, according to experts.

Al Varela of El Paso's Al Varela Cosmetics is particularly fond of Nars cosmetics, which offers both the nude and the smoldering look.

"Nars has a palette of neutral colors," Varela said.

As does Avon, with lipsticks in mauve, cappuccino and copper and eye shadows ranging from muted to dark brown.

Brown will be this year's "it" color, Varela said, which explains why neutrals are making a comeback.

While Nars has palettes of neutrals, it also has bright eye shadows in green and blue, colors that have long been an eye shadow faux pas. The cosmetic line also offers blushes and lipsticks in a variety of pink shades.

Nars is known for flirting with the extreme, Varela said.

"Nars follows the advice of designers," he said. "They do basically the same looks found on runway models, but they play it down for the consumer."

Kendra Kramer, a University of Texas at El Paso junior, described how she defines the spring makeup look.

"Makeup should be very light and sheer, very natural," she said.

Like Varela, Kramer is also a Nars fan.

"Nars is a very neat line," she said.

Shana Dewhirst, communications specialist for Sally Beauty Supply, said that feminine is key whether the look is natural or sexy.

"Feminine can be lighter shades of eye shadow, very soft full lashes, light-colored lips," she said. "Sexy can be dark, smoky eyes."

Dewhirst said that popular colors include light blues and bubblegum pink, as well as glossy colors in all shades.

As for glitter, shimmer and gloss, Dewhirst said, "It's a trend that's still hanging in there. It's one of those trends you hear is going to leave but hasn't yet."

Varela said glamour --shimmer, glitter, gloss -- is "very much" in style, but added "there's a difference between glitter and shimmer."

Shimmer is more understated than the glitter favored by teens.

To accomplish a come-hither look with eye makeup, Varela had a word of caution: "When you do heavy eye makeup, go very sheer mouth and balance it with something with more color."

Since spring means color more than anything else, Dewhirst advised, "Add more color in the face as far as cheeks go. Go for a sun-kissed look by using nice rosy-pink powder and a lot of bronzers to get a healthy look."  

Nadra Kareem may be reached at

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