I’m the New Kid On The Blog. I have openly admitted that I’m a makeup late bloomer, so I might as well fess up and say that I’ve been quite a makeup jargon dummy too. Everybody has to start somewhere! Trying to guess the meanings of abbreviations and acronyms in the early days was like a fun sport for me, a kind of mental jogging.

One of the first abbreviations that I came across when I was researching makeup for problem skin last year was MMU. Since the topic was on makeup and not on a university in Manchester, I quickly realised that it stood for mineral makeup. And while on the subject of MMU, have you ever tried EDM? I have bought several products from Everyday Minerals, including its flat top brush which has received very good reviews. It’s really a great face brush……but I digress.

Well, there was also MUA. After circling the internet block quite a bit, I found out that MUA could mean Makeup Alley, the popular beauty community website, and it could also stand for makeup artist, though the latter is sometimes also represented by MA, I think.

“I have yet to find my HG foundation.”

When I first read that in a blog written by this very anxious girl, I didn’t have a clue as to what HG meant. “Is that a brand?” I wondered. “Does it stand for High Grade, a product of superior quality?”

On another blog written by a very enthusiastic female: “MAC MSF is my HG highlighter!!”

[Eyes glazed over]

Thankfully, I came across a forum where someone, unaware that she was doing me a great favour, kindly typed out the full words ‘Holy Grail’. Enlightenment!

I had to Google for MSF though because my guesses were associated with:

(a) Doctors Without Borders, and
(b) Microsoft

neither of which made any sense in this context, of course. Yes, ladies, I now know what MSF means but I still haven’t got a clue as to what it actually does for the face. [Shrug]

While we’re on MAC, itself an acronym (and it’s a good thing that I never once thought it was a computer!), how about PP? I keep reading great reviews on these Paint Pots. Many ladies out there are saying that it’s a better e/s primer than UDPP and TFSI. Is that true? I don’t own any of these three, but up till recently, from watching all those videos on Youtube, all I noticed was that the Urban Decay one seemed to have a bigger following than the one by Two Faced. Oops, Too Faced, I mean.

Oh, I musn’t forget MUFE! My initial thought when I saw MUFE was that it was probably a Japanese brand, pronounced ‘meeoof’. Think a little deeper, I said to myself. It can’t possibly be meeoof, stewpid!

[Contemplative silence]

Why, of course! Make Up For Ever! The French brand that has stores with shelves and display areas on wheels, fashioned to look like huge makeup train cases. I had walked past one such store hundreds of times before in my pre-beauty awakening era, but of course, back then, that meant nothing to me.

So, I've read that MUFE has an HD Foundation. I can guess what HD means, thanks to the parallel advancement in television technology, but there was also MUFE F&B. Right, it’s got nothing to do with the catering business, I’m sure. A check on Google tells me that it’s some kind of foundation for the face and body. O-kay.

This last one is the one I find funniest. It’s neither an abbreviation nor an acronym. It’s just a word. Lemming.

“I am so lemming MAC’s new Colour Craft Collection!”
“This blusher is on my Christmas lemming list.”

A lemming is a small type of rodent that lives in and around the Arctic and it’s also known for periodic mass migrations that sometimes result in mass drownings. Metaphorically, it refers to the act of following the crowd without thinking on a course towards disaster.

So, in the makeup context, I kind of guessed it had something to do with ‘a crave’. To be sure, I went back to trusty Google and found this definition on Urban Dictionary:

A lemming refers to a purchase/wished-for item which results from reading an enthusiastic post about a new fabulous product. Overcome by compulsion, readers follow like lemmings diving off a cliff. Originally coined in the newsgroup in the late 90s, the term has permeated numerous beauty boards/forums/sites. May be used as a noun or verb. May apply to the buyer but more commonly to the item of desire.”

Anyway, I’m lemming the NARS (that’s not an acronym, btw) lipstick in Belle de Jour. What are you lemming these days?


Gail said...

hahah I have known these acronyms for so long I forgot what it must be like to anyone not yet an addict! Welcome to our world!!

I am lemming the new NARS eyshadow duo, I just saw it on MUA and it looks amazing!!! A steel blue and a charcoal (forgotten the name but the boards were buzzing with it) xxx

Michelle @Lipstickrules said...

OMG - love this post! I had similar issues when I started reading beauty blogs etc. I have a 'Lingo' section on my page where I try to add new words that I pick up.

just subscribed to you. come and visit my blog too.

Anonymous said...

Love this post too! I actually *still* get confused with these acronyms when I come across them.. and sometimes when I don't have the time nor energy to figure it out, I just glance over the word and pretend like I know what it meant haha!

Yi said...

Hi there, just popped in your blog, like your posts. Carry on girl!!xxxx

Witoxicity said...

I suspect the eyeshadow duo you mentioned is called Brumes. Very pretty. I'm no expert in NARS but the one product that I have from this brand (Lipstick in Dolce Vita) has so bowled me over that I think I will be a huge NARS makeup collector in the very near future. [Alarm bells]

Great blog you have there! I'm still reeling from the shock of reading how many lipglosses you own! ;)

It's comforting to know that I'm not the only one out there who's been struggling (still am sometimes!) with the lingo. I know what you mean about glancing over the word and pretending to know the meaning. I do that once in a while. I figure that if I keep on reading, the answer will eventually be revealed to me! Ha ha!

Thank you for stopping by! Have a great week!!

Anonymous said...

Hee hee Love this post! I have been following you tube/blogs for a few months now and at first was clueless! Now started my own blog too-had a similar post as my first one (but not a patch on yours!) :-) x

Witoxicity said...

Thanks for dropping by my blog.

I've read your first post and yes indeed, the words 'pan', 'payoff' and 'contouring' are also specialised words! Konad? I had the same fleeting thought too when I first saw the name. :D

Naomi said...

I just found your blog; it very nice and you have quite a way with words.
I was in this same situation a little over a year ago when I was just getting back into makeup.

Witoxicity said...

It's so nice of you to stop by and thank you for your very encouraging words!

Regarding the jargon, it's always funny to hear that other ladies out there have also once been in this same predicament before. So reassuring! Ha ha!

Jennnn said...

i haven't actually bought anything from EDM.. but i did order a couple of samples.. never got around to ordering more though, lol. I'm relatively new to blogging too.. and I still don't know what MSF stands for. I just googled it and got "motorcycle safety foundation", i'm a noob. LOL i love your lemming comic.. clever clever ;)

Witoxicity said...

It's so lovely to have you come by and I'm pleased that you like the comic! I hope that by now you know what MSF stands for. If not, don't worry. There are other much more important things in life to be pondering on. :)

Anonymous said...

awh this post is so cute.
it made me laugh xD.
i'm a make up late bloomer too since around when you started. hehe.
the picture at the end is funny xD

Witoxicity said...

Oh, a fellow makeup late bloomer! Isn't it fun now to be in the exploration stage? There is so much to discover!

I'm pleased you liked this post and the lemming comic at the end. :)

immarafrancesca said...

Oh my! This is me, four or five years ago! I remember a friendly sales lady who helped when I was a make up virgin. She was asking if I wanted a highlighter or if I wanted a more natural look or defined like matte. I was so overwhelmed and I had to blurt out, what's a matte? And there was this utter complete science -- then she explained. Haha.

Your blog is awesome. :) If you don't mind, may I share this entry one of these days. I just have to share this! :)

Witoxicity said...

@M :)
It's lovely of you to come by and thanks for your kind comments.

That was quite a funny incident with the sales lady! Ha ha!

Of course I wouldn't mind if you shared this article with your readers. I think many of us started rather clueless at some point and as we build up our makeup 'knowledge', we tend to forget our humble beginnings. Well, I think we should take a moment to look back at the past and laugh at our ourselves. :D

immarafrancesca said...

Thank you for letting me re-post it! Here's the link:

Cynthia Z said...

Hi came upon yr blog through M's. N I was laughing all through this cool post. LOL at "lemmings" I also went "Wth is lemmings??!!" at's a rather funny word :)
And "high grade" had me in splits :D

Witoxicity said...

@M :)
You're most welcome! It's great to know that you can relate so well to this post. I hope other readers can too. :D

Thanks for stopping by! I'm glad you found this post entertaining. :) It's several months on and I STILL find the word lemming the funniest! :D

Tanveer said...

OMG! Hilarious!

I am a new beauty blogger too & trust me - I was just as flummoxed as you.

In fact I just learnt what Lemming means thks to you, I used to keep wondering why ppl say that :P.

Another word I hear a lot is HAUL. Like we went out hunting to the beauty shelves & this is all i managed to attack and drag back home! LOL. Loved the post. Came here from Cynthia's blog!

Tanveer said...

Ohh.. & once when I was at MAC trying out their TM (tinted moisturisers - look at me - have begun to sprout jargon myself) & I asked him if he had a foundation that offered more coverage? He looks at me with an eyebrow raised and asks "Do you need more coverage?"...

I just couldn't figure out if that was a question or a skeptical comment.

I just mumbled something like "I don't know, i guess so or not" and quickly slided outta the store - never to return :D....

Witoxicity said...

@Tanveer Parmar
It's nice of you to stop by! Haven't we all had funny experiences in the process of getting to grips with makeup jargon at some point? :D Thanks so much for sharing yours with me here! The image you painted for 'haul' is hilarious!

Anonymous said...

you are absolutely totally and utterly hilarious and I'm sooooo bloody following you!!!!!


Witoxicity said...

Thank you for dropping by! I'm chuffed that you found this post entertaining. :)