Monthly Archives: February 2017

Kay Meeks-A Southern Belle’s journey to a sucessful New York Fashionista!

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Kay Meeks-A Southern Belle’s journey to a sucessful New York Fashionista!

So the whole thing started on my way out the door at the Plitzs New York Fashion Week Show. I was running late to meet a friend. As I was jetting out the door – this woman walks by in the most stunning gown ever! She looked so glamorous I literally just stopped and had to talk to her. I saw her look back at me with this look like “why is this girl staring at me” lol so I asked her if she is a model. She said she is but today she is interviewing people for TV. That’s how it all began! We started chatting and this is where a friendship as well as a professional connection began!

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This is the photo I clicked of her at Plitzs!

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Kay Meeks is a multi-talented and graceful woman you cannot help but admire! As she was telling me all the creative entrepreneul things she partakes in my  mind was racing and I knew I needed to interview her as well as introduce her to my people

 

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Hat available on Meekswear.com

Growing up in a tiny town in North Carolina called Bunn, with a population of less than 345 people (!!!!!), Kay was girly and loved fashion. She was also a trend setter! In fact, one time in the 6th grade, she took a black colored pencil and made it into eyeliner! Even though she got punished on a daily basis by her mom, she still continued to wear it! In middle school she made a pocketbook from a Merita Bread bag with yarn and she also started cutting up her jeans even before it became popular! The world of fashion had been calling her since she was young and she was destined for a life!

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She moved to New York City four and a half years ago to pursue her dream of working in the fashion world. It all started when she replied to a modeling ad for a runway show in Jamaica, Queens. Luck was on her side and she got the gig! This is where her career in the modeling world started! From that one show, she got flooded with offers! As her career in modeling was flourishing she also did films, music videos, hosted broadcasts and so much more! This is a true success story of a small town southern belle, who came to the big, bad city and landed her first ever modeling assignment at age 38!!!!! She is an inspiration and proved that it’s never too late and nothing should stop you from chasing your dreams!

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Slaying in Meekswear!

 

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Meekswear earrings

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Modeling a choker from Meekswear

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Meekswear – the “Carol’s” glasses

Kay also owns her own brand of fashion wear. Meeks Wear is Kay’s very own, unique, stylish and trendy fashion wear line. She’s got a variety of products from quirky sunglasses, stylish watches, dazzling watches, cellphone covers, custom designed eyeglass frames and extremely unique clothing with creative designs and catchy quotes!  She adds a touch of her very own individuality to each of her pieces and all are so cool, creative, colorful and fun! She models many of her styles on her instagram and loves it when her customers send her pics of them modeling her gear! Everything on her site is pretty affordable as well, so you can go crazy and buy, buy, buy!!!

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She decided to take things one step forward and take a fashion design class. She saw that there was a very affordable class down the street from where she lived, so she decided why not! During the class, Kay had been scrolling through instagram when she discovered the account of the most stylish elderly women she had ever seen! The one and only Baddiewinkle! She became obsessed with this woman and her impeccable style! There was one outfit in particular Kay saw and had to have!!! She hunted everywhere for this dress and asked everrryyyone!!! When she finally found it, she realized the dress also came with a pretty price tag. This didn’t discourage her at all though! She decided she was going to make her own unique remake of that same dress but switch it up with her own unique flare! She got to working, sketching, researching and choosing fabric. Nothing was stopping her from recreating it with her own personal touch! She tirelessly put her work in and created the most fabulous remake of Baddiewinkle’s red lip yellow dress! Her teacher saw ambition, creativity, style and talent in Kay that she herself had not discovered!

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Kay modeling her fabulous rendition of Baddie Winkle’s Yellow dress!

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Meekswear.com – search “yellow dress”

The talent doesn’t stop there! What’s amazing about her journey is that she found the fashion design class, which I might add was a $10 class and a few blocks from her place in the Bronx, with the intention of becoming a couture gown designer but found her talent to lead her to become a buyer for her own business!

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#OOTD – Heading to her first Fashion Design class

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All smiles in her design class!

It was a great pleasure and if I may add, an honor to have had the opportunity to speak to Kay over the phone the other day. I believe we meet people and people are brought into our lives for a reason! I could have, and almost, kept running out the door that evening without stopping but I stopped and I am very glad I did!

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“Keisha” oversized sunglasses

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Meekswear.com – Puff Ball wooden earrings

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All accessories can be found on Meekswear.com

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“Savage” top & Faux Fur Crossbody purse available on Meekswear.com

I met an amazing woman who is a role model, inspiration, multi-talent, hardworking, intelligent and extremely friendly new friend! Aaannnddd btw – I bought the red lip yellow dress tooooo!!! It’s being shipped. Watch out for a selfie on my instagram as soon as it arrives!!!

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Meekswear.com – “Don’t Worry Be Yonce”

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Meekswear shades

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Meekswear Watch

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Meekswear Cellphone cover & Hat

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Meekswear Cartoon Top

Shout out to Kay Meeks!! Keep moving forward!!

Check her out on her instagram: Kay_Meeks

Also here’s the link to her website!! Go on and shop til you drop!!! If you want to purchase the same yellow dress that I did, just go to the search bar and search “yellow dress”.

https://www.meekswear.com/

 

Karen Bahri

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Burano, Italy – walking through a Kaleidoscope of Colours!

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Burano, Italy – walking through a Kaleidoscope of Colours!
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Colorful Burano, Italy!

I know you all may be noticing a pattern on my last few posts, as well as some of my instagam photos so far this year. It’s all kind of collaging (or kaleiding hehe) into a huge “cute European village” type vibe. But hey! I’ve been discovering these places and they are toooo cuuuutttee not to share with my Kaleidoscopers, so why not, hey!

This time, I am taking you all to a little Island off the northern coast of Italy!

Grab some vino & leggo to BURANOOOOO!!! 

Burano is an island in the Venetian Lagoon, in northern Italy. Similar to Venice, it’s like an archipelago of four islands linked by bridges. The island is known for its chic lace work and brightly colored fisherman’s cottages!

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The island is situated 4 miles from Venice. You can take a “vaporetti”, which is a Venetian motorboat, and be there in about 40 minutes which adds to the thrill of visiting this vibrantly colorful, yet calm and happy place!

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The current population of Burano is about 2,800. There are many other small islands surrounding Burano as well, but out of them Burano has a high population density at more than 13,000 per square kilometer!That is more than twenty times the density of neighboring island, Mazzorbo. It’s also almost entirely covered by residential buildings, with very few small green areas.

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Burano’s small, brightly painted houses are popular among the artists circle. The colors of the houses follow a specific system originating from the golden age of its development. Therefore, if someone wishes to paint their home, they have to send a request to the government, who will respond by making notice of the certain colors permitted for that lot.

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Visiting this island is like stepping back in time. On the island’s meandering narrow streets, you will see laundry strung up between buildings, bicycles &  boats parked up, as well as many ladies sitting in the sun, chatting with their neighbors, while creating delicate Burano lace. Lace is part of the island’s history dating way back to around the 16th century.

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Don’t be fooled by the size of this charming little island! There is actually quiet a bit to do! The colorful houses and buildings make for a very picturesque, enjoyable stroll on these breathtaking streets and lots of brilliant photo taking! You can also  browse through one of the many lace shops, which some may be a bit on the pricier side, but definitely worth every penny.

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It’s key to note that while arriving in Burano, you will find yourself heading down a narrow street full of shops selling lace, including pretty umbrellas and fans. This after passing by one of the few green areas on the island, of course! These shops are highly attractive and very few people can manage to escape from this little street without being lured into one of the gorgeous shops full of colorful scarves, dresses and other such accessories and souvenirs.

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You can also pay a visit to the Museo del Merletto (Museum of Lacemaking). There are many lively shops, cafes, bars and even a cinema as well! As you wander across the many little bridges, you will notice the somewhat ominously leaning bell-tower of The Church of San Martino.

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The pictures alone speak for themselves – Burano is a charming, breathtaking  and enchanting island full of a kaleidoscope of colors for photography nuts and well worth the effort!

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-Karen Bahri

Couture Fashion Week New York

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Couture Fashion Week New York

This past weekend I had the pleasure of attending the New York Couture Fashion Week Shows 25th season at the Crown Plaza hotel in Times Square. I was there Saturday & Sunday evenings and saw some amazing collections and performances, front row and center!! I definately learned a lot and the experience broadened my ignorance of what fashion shows, runways and models are like.

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At such prestige an event, I realized we are all human, and professional runway models walking a ramp are human and error no matter how much experience they have – just like the rest of us! I saw a few models slip, but continue on as poised as ever. I don’t blame them. Tell a man to walk in 6 inch heels on a slippery catwalk in a lengthy, uncomfortable gown with lights and cameras flashing at them in every direction. Ohh yeah, and a crowd of people too! I also noticed, and this might just be in my mind, I always figured models are supposed to be super tall and super slim. Tall, they were all; but I noticed a handful of girls that weren’t exactly skin and bones. They were far from “fat” but their bodies just seemed normal skinny. I’m not sure if that was just me or if the standards have changed for models; if so, that’s great! There are enough social pressures for younger girls these days!

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I had to have my moment too haha

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Proud that Zee TV was an official sponsor

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Again, having a moment! haha

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Anyways! As much as I want to tell you about ALL the designers and show you ALL the pics of every model wearing every outfit in their collections, we would be here all day! And you know me by now, so you know I definitely have all those photos! I’m going to highlight for you my 3 top favorites! These are in no specific order, they all are marvelous in their own unique ways!

 

DESIGNER: Houda El Fechka Eddiouane (Morocco/Netherlands)

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Houda is a Dutch Moroccan haute couture designer internationally well known for her stunning expressions of femininity, romance and elegance intended for both Moroccan and European women alike, as well as all women globally.

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Her statement pieces are appealing to the eye with stunning & exotic elegance. Integrating skillful cuts, luxurious materials with immaculate results which are often marked with an elegant Moroccan touch, her talent for combining assorted influences with perfectly graceful style has been capturing the world of fashion.

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I was really drawn to the Moroccan touch in her pieces and that, for me, is why she made it to my top 3 list! Chic, ethnic, exotic and elegant. The music during her show was a mix which ended with a very soothing French melody that I really enjoyed.

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DESIGNER: Ruchika Kabra (India)

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Ruchika Kabra is a graduate of the National Institute of Fashion Technology in India, where she was recognized with the Most Creative Collection Award in Textile Design. Following this, she came to New York to study Fashion design at New York’s Parsons School of Design. Her evening wear collection won her an honorable mention while she competed with 29 selected designers at FIT & Parsons.

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Ms. Kabra’s latest collection is all about silk used in its natural form. The collection of exclusive gowns is labeled “The Royal Ecru”, fit for a royal, cementing a fashion moment. To make the collection even more mesmerizing, beautiful crystals have been added to create a royal touch, and coordinate well with the sheen of silk.

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It’s obvious why I chose her to be on my top 3, I will always support our desi independent women and I love my India and our fashion! Colorful Indian silks and embroideries fused into Indo-Western couture is elegant , exotic, mysterious, classy and will never go out of style!

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DESIGNER: Alexandra Popescu-York (USA/Romania)

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Acclaimed artist-designer Alexandra Popescu-York made her sixth appearance at Couture Fashion Week New York with her Spring-Summer 2017 clothing collection entitled “Tour du Monde” (World Tour).

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“Tour du Monde” is a capsule-type collection that never goes out of fashion. It is as timeless and stirring as the memories of one’s soul-enriching travels around the world!

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A native of Bucharest, Romania, Alexandra Popescu-York is a New York City based designer and artist. She is a world-class power acknowledged by the industry’s best early in her career.

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This collection was so bizarre in the most fabulous way possible! Eye catching, mood lifting and somewhat questioning (with the yearn to know what it’s all about). The music was thrillingly intense, as if it belonged in a horror movie! The beats resembled glass breaking and things crashing all over the place! So bizarre!  This woman is a true genius and shook up the crowd! Bravo!

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Popescu-York’s humanitarian efforts have earned her the “Ambassador of Good Hearts and Romanian Culture” title. She is also a dotting wife and mother. Her sons Alexander Julian and Ralph have walked the Couture Fashion Week runway in the past, and they were an adorable and lively addition to her magic in this years show as well!

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So those were my top 3 from the Couture Fashion Week New York shows 25th season! Stay tuned my fellow Kaleidoscopers! I still have sooo much more to blog about on the other collections which were amazing as well!! Feel free to stalk my instagram (or you know, follow me xo) to see more video clips of these amazing designers. There were definitely some eye catching moments better captured on video you don’t want to miss!!!

Instagram: Karenskaleidoscope

-Karen Bahri

Trinidad’s Temple in the Sea – A determined Man’s Masterpiece!

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Trinidad’s Temple in the Sea – A determined Man’s Masterpiece!

This Hindu Temple at Waterloo in Carapichaima, Trinidad is testament of one man’s love of Hinduism. The Temple was the 25-year attempt of Sewdass Sadhu to construct a worship centre at no-man’s land: THE SEA. Sadhu was denied land to build his beloved temple and took his struggle offshore, toiling and unloading buckets of dirt into the Gulf in an effort to create artificial land.

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A well known site of worship for Hindus and a tourist attraction, the Waterloo temple was built by Sewdass Sadhu, an indentured laborer who came to Trinidad from India in 1907. This Hindu temple was built through perseverance and strength.

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The story is well-known: Sadhu built his first temple in 1947 on lands owned by a sugar cane company. Needless to say, it was broken down and Sadhu was charged with trespassing and given the choice of being fined or 14 days in prison.

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Declaring that if he couldn’t build his temple on the land then he would build it in the sea, Sadhu began the work that would become his dream.  For the next 25 years, Sadhu dedicated himself to completing the temple. On his bicycle, he carried two buckets and in a leather bag. Stone by stone, he assembled the base of the temple in the sea, steadily determined.

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In 1994, the government at the time helped finish the temple in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the coming of Indians to the country. A pier was added to ensure the Waterloo Temple could easily be accessed during high tide. Five hundred feet into the quiet waters of the Gulf of Paria, today it continues to stand on the very spot Sadhu first built it.

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Over the years, Hindu devotees and tourists alike have made the journey to the Waterloo temple, also named Sewdass Sadhu Shiv Mandir, in dedication to Sadhu, but better known as the Temple-in-the-Sea, once described as the first of its kind in the western world by Dharmacharya Pundit Krishna Maharaj. The Waterloo Cremation Site is also next to the grounds of this Temple.

The Temple in the Sea, is an octagonal- shaped colorful structure. At the entrance stands a statue of Sadhu himself. Flags and statues adorn the temple’s perimeter. Before entering, as a Hindu custom, you must remove your shoes as once inside you are on holy ground. The beauty of reverence is reflected in the well-crafted murtis (statues/idols) of Lord Hanuman, Lord Ganesh, Lord Shiva and Durga Maa with beautiful flowers ornamented around them.

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Just as a bit of background, Indo-Trini and Tobagonians have now become interchangeable with West Indians. These were people who were escaping poverty in India and seeking employment offered by the British for jobs either as indentured laborers, workers or educated servicemen, primarily, between 1845 and 1917.

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The demand for Indian indentured laborers increased dramatically after the abolition of slavery in 1834. They were sent, sometimes in large numbers, to plantation colonies producing high value crops such as sugar in Africa and the Caribbean, largely in Trinidad and Guyana. These days their culture is a vibrant blend of Indian and Caribbean mix, which is quite colorful and apparent in their music, speech/dialect and cuisine, in particular.

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In summary, this Hindu Temple at Waterloo in Carapichaima, Trinidad is testament of one man’s love of Hinduism. The Temple was the 25-year attempt of Sewdass Sadhu to construct a worship centre at no-man’s land: the sea. Sadhu was denied land to build his beloved temple and took his struggle offshore, toiling and unloading buckets of dirt into the Gulf in an effort to create artificial land.

 

-Karen Bahri

Korean Magical Lip Powder

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Korean Magical Lip Powder

Korea, and for that matter Japan, are definitely places with some unique beauty trends, fashion and style! The Korean beauty market is like no other and there are a lot of people who love their products so much that they purchase them online regularly. Japanese products as well. I can’t be bias, Asia as a whole has a remarkable beauty industry. Korea and Japan for some reason tend to stand out more globally, which is why I am pointing them out. I’m honestly not that familiar with a lot of the products in that scene or which might be “better” (it’s all a personal choice at the end of the day) but it’s always cool to go to foreign countries and see what the trends are there!

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I recently noticed some beauty bloggers I follow reviewing this product and I thought it was very unique and fun! This is by no means a high-end luxury product, but it just looks fun to try and it contains essential oils and other natural products, so that should make you feel good.

The brand’s name is RiRe and their lip powder is a unique, interesting and fun product that, as implied by it’s name, starts off as a powder, then once applied, it magically turns into a liquid lipstick consistency.

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It’s understandable to think a power may end up becoming flaky and dry; but this product is made with essential oils from chamomile, rosemary extract, peppermint and natto gum (fermented boiled soybeans) to help lock moisture in and keep your lips smooth and hydrated.

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This lip powder comes in a small, transparent plexiglass with a black cap. Through the body of the tiny bottle you can see the fine powder and inside the cap is an angled applicator. It’s actually really small and difficult to use, so you do have to be careful. You must also be careful when opening the bottle because the powder is super fine, similar to translucent powder, and may spill.

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RiRe Lip Powder comes in four colors:

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ORANGE POP

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HOT PLUM

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SUGAR ROSE

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FASHION RED

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What you do is you swipe the applicator on the inner portion of  your lips going outwards. Meaning you start from the inner side, which is a bit more damp and moist, and thus the magic of the powder begins! The powder becomes creamy as soon as it touches your lips. On dry lips (like the outer portion) it doesn’t get as creamy. Be aware though that the color of the powder changes to a slightly different color when applied to the skin. The colors look distinct when swatched on the arm, but on the lips you will see that Hot Plum and Fashion Red look almost similar. Sugar Rose is a less intense pink/cherry and Orange Pop looks like a classy red shade on the lips. The colors are still smooth and nice but its not an exact match to the powder when applied.

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RiRe Lip Powder can help you achieve a smooth, refreshing and persistent lip coverage. The powder emulsion forms a pigmented layer covered by a glossy layer once it touches your lips. Buildable colors allow you to go from soft to vivid in just a few swipes. The powder leaves a soft stain. Depending on the layers you can make the stain stronger or softer.

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This is another cosmetic line that has become a craze over the past months especially on social media platforms. The RiRe Lip Powders have such a unique texture and they feel so lightweight on the lips. The downside of this product is the short applicator, which makes the application a little difficult. It is definitely worth a shot though because it’s different and fun! It’s a Korean product you can purchase online at amazon and other such sites.

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-Karen Bahri