Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Just for fun: A few beauty related things i've realized over the years.

#1 If you should invest your hard earned moolah in one item in your cosmetic bag, it should be a good foundation.
We all know expensive isn't always better, but I do believe if you're going to splurge, splurge on a good foundation. Who really cares about your amazing eye makeup if your foundation looks blotchy? Alright.. I'm not trying to bash all drugstore foundations. There are a few good ones, but you have way more options, and a larger selection of shades to perfectly match your skin when you branch out into the higher end brands. The wonderful thing about getting your foundation from a department store is, you can sample it before purchasing it. Get color matched, and request a sample that will be enough for a few uses. Test it out at home, and see how you like it!

#2 Mascara doesn't need to be purchased anywhere else, other than the drugstore. 
When it comes to mascara, there are so many options at the drugstore. I've tried so many high end brands, along with many drugstore brands, and the high end brands never delivered more than the drugstore brands. Especially for a product that will dry up in a few weeks, I find that paying $20 and up for a mascara is a waste of money. You're better off investing in a good mascara base and eyelash curler. Don't get me wrong, curiosity sometimes gets to me and I'll treat myself once in a while, but on an every day basis, drugstore mascara works just as good!
#3 If you tan frequently, have more than one foundation shade on hand.
Especially for those who use self tanner often. Keep a foundation on hand of your actual skin shade, regardless of how light it is. I know many of you probably feel that you look your best with a nice tan, but being fair is just as sexy! I didn't abide by this for years. Can you believe my actual coloring is usually the lightest shade at the drugstore, but I've been self tanning for ten years and throughout the years have only purchased my tan shade!? Talk about pressure to tan every day - If I didn't tan, I had no makeup!


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Maybelline Dream Mousse Blush in Pink Frosting.

Maybelline Pink Frosting Dream Mousse Blush

• Air-whipped mousse blush feels satin-soft on skin, glides on smoothly, and blends easily for seamless color and a natural finish
• Long-wearing formula provides luminous, long-lasting color on cheeks without clogging pores

With your fingertips, pat a small amount of blush onto the apples of your cheeks. Use feathery strokes to blend gently from your cheekbones to your temples. To build color intensity, apply more blush.

* For application, I much better prefer a (synthetic) duo-fiber brush such as the MAC 188 or Coastal Scents Tapered Duo Fiber Brush, although fingers can also be used.

Pink Frosting is a light pink that's a little bit on the cool side, with a scatter of fine, golden shimmer.

I heart Betsey Johnson Accessories.

Betsey Johnson has been one of my favorite brands for accessories, ever since I was introduced to the brand back in 2006, while working at a higher-end department store.

Her style is very brash, over-the-top and definitely one-of-a-kind. I love the bows, hearts, flowers, leopard print, poofs, peplums, sequins, glitter and more!

One thing I love about Betsey Johnson is that it's a brand that's widely available, and can be found at many of my local discounted stores, such as Nordstrom Rack, Marshalls, TJMaxx, Loehman's, etc, for a fraction of the retail price. I always love raiding the racks for hot pink tags. ;)

Here are a couple cold weather accessories I picked up this Winter..


Monday, November 28, 2011

Did you sign up for Shoemint?

If many of you are on top of the newest launches, I'm sure you've already heard of Shoemint. But for those of you that haven't, I thought I'd quickly share, because I'm so excited about it!

Since Shoedazzle (were they the first ones?), there have been so many companies (celebrity collaborated) following the popular trend of a "monthly subscription" service, that's not for a magazine, but a pair of shoes, a box of beauty samples, fashion jewelry, clothing and more. What's more fun than that?

If you're familiar with the mint companies, JewelmintStylemint and Beautymint are existing monthly subscription services; Jewelmint, offering unique designs of fashion jewelry, Stylemint, offering high quality casual t-shirts and Beautymint, offering a skincare system. All of which are personalized to fit your individual wants and needs. 

Shoemint is the newest mint, and launched on Black Friday. 

The style of fashion icon Rachel Bilson, the vision of celebrated stylist Nicole Chavez, and the shoe-making expertise of the legendary Steve Madden, combine to bring you ShoeMint - a shoe shopping experience unlike any other.
Step into the impeccable style and craftsmanship of an inspired luxury shoe you could pay hundreds of dollars for -without having to.

It works the same as the other sites, and starts out with taking a "style quiz", which is a quick, multiple-choice quiz to learn your personal style. Based on your answers, the website will generate a "showroom" for you of the things that should suit your taste. You won't be charged to join, and take the style quiz. You will only be charged after your first purchase. Each month, your selection changes, and you have the choice whether to "skip" the month and not purchase anything, or you will be charged the monthly fee and your account will receive credit for one purchase. Not too complicated right? I swear it's less complicated than it sounds.

The monthly price for Shoemint is $79.98. It sounds expensive, but the shoes are real quality leather, suede and stitching and entail trendy, high-end designs. Similar style shoes will retail for at least double the price. And, with all of the mint sites, there are always coupon codes. (For ref, I'll never make a purchase from any of the sites without a good coupon code.)


Covergirl CG Smoothers AquaSmooth Compact Foundation Review!

covergirl aqua smoothers compact foundation review

Covergirl CG Smoothers AquaSmooth Compact Foundation

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION: Designed with AquaCurrent Science, this vitamin-enriched formula directs moisture to your skin's surface to improve its condition over time, while giving smooth, even coverage that makes imperfections virtually vanish before your eyes. This solid makeup transforms into a liquid during application, then dries to an even, powder-light finish.

-Oil-Free and Noncomedogenic (won't clog pores)
-SPF 15 UVA/UVB Sunscreen
-Vitamins B3, B5, and E

There are fifteen (15) shades in total, and considering the compact is packaged closed (yes, the compact is shut and is packaged in plastic so you can't see the color), you'd pretty much have to play the guessing game when picking a shade at the store. The shades are as follows: Ivory 705, Classic Ivory 710, Natural Ivory 715, Creamy Natural 720, Buff Beige 725, Classic Beige 730, Medium Light 735, Natural Beige 740, Warm Beige 745, Creamy Beige 750, Soft Honey 755, Classic Tan 760, Tawny 765, Toasted Almond 770 and Soft Sable 775. Unfortunately, if you have very fair skin or deep-dark skin, there may not be a match for you. The main factor that brings down the rating of this foundation is the shade selection. There aren't enough golden/yellow shades, and many of the shades are too neutral (gray) or too pink. I was lucky to find a match for my non-tanned skin; Classic Ivory, which is a good MAC NC20 color match. It's also said to match NW20. From reviews, I've read that Buff Beige is good for NC25.

Classic Ivory

Sunday, November 20, 2011

My Current Skincare Routine.

It's been a while since I posted a skincare routine (since this past March) and for the past several months I've been following the same routine and it's been keeping my skin in good shape.

MY SKIN TYPE: My skin type year round is typically in the normal range, as I rarely suffer from dryness or excess oily skin. My skin is generally fairly clear with the exception of some minor, past blemish marks and light sun spots on my upper cheeks. My skin is also sensitive, and prone to break-outs. My breakouts usually occur on my lower cheeks.

-Olay Pro-X Exfoliating Brush (previously mentioned here)
-Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser
-100% Pure Jojoba Oil
-Baby Oil

-Stridex Maximum Strength Daily Care Acne Pads

-Ellen Lange Peel Accelerator Pads (from the Express Retexturizing Peel Kit, reviewed here)

-Reviva Labs Hyaluronic Acid Serum (previously reviewed here) OR Your Best Face Skincare Hydrate B Serum, which are both very similar.
-Clarins Vital Light Serum

-Reviva Labs Alpha Lipoic Acid, Vitamin C Ester, DMAE Night Cream (previously reviewed here)
-100% Pure Argan Oil
-DDF Ultra-lite Moisturizing Dew (previously reviewed here)
-Unrefined Shea Butter

-Unrefined Shea Butter

-Smith's Rosebud Salve


Thursday, November 17, 2011

NOTD: Barielle Sailors Delight; A Perfect Pink!

Two (2) Coats of Barielle Sailors Delight and One (1) Coat of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Top Coat

Barielle Sailors Delight is described on the Barielle website as a "dusty mauve cream". I would describe it as a medium-toned, neutral pink. In some lighting, the neutral undertone gives it an almost lilac pink appearance. I find it a little difficult finding the correct shade of pink that isn't too bright, too light or dark, and applies opaque. A pink that is "work friendly".

There's nothing obnoxious about this pink. It's slightly vivid, yet perfectly muted, and it's not too "mauve" where it's ages your hands. Application is really good, it applies opaque from the start, and is completely opaque with two coats. As far as the wear goes, I'll have to wait and see!

Barielle's Nail Polishes are formaldehyde free, toluene free, D8P free and pregnancy safe.

Barielle Nail Polish and Products can be found at various beauty supply stores and retailers around the US. For a list of locations, click here. I've spotted Barielle at my local TJMaxx/Marshalls stores and some ULTA locations. I purchased this bottle at ULTA on clearance for $2.99.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Maybelline Superstay 24 HR Makeup Review!

maybelline superstay foundation review

Maybelline Superstay 24 HR Makeup

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION: Foundation gives superior coverage and provides 24-hour wear. Superstay 24HR Makeup by Maybelline incorporates a Micro-Flex technology formulated to withstand heat, sweat and humidity - yet stays comfortable and looks flawless. Oil-free makeup will not transfer. Dermatologist tested. Fragrance Free. Suitable for all skin types.

There are twelve (12) shades in total, so finding your perfect match may be a little difficult with the limited shade selection. The shades are as follows: Porcelain Ivory, Sand Beige, Classic Ivory, Natural Beige, Nude, Classic Beige, Pure Beige, Natural Tan, True Beige, Honey Beige, Caramel and Cocoa. I purchased this foundation because I was in need of a foundation to wear when I'm not tan, so I chose the shade "Sand Beige", which seems to be around the MAC NC20 coloring.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Recent Swag. (Jeffrey Campbell, Betsey Johnson, F21 & More)

Hey Everyone!

I thought it would be fun to post a haul of some accessories I've acquired in the past couple of months. It's all kind of random, but I love when other bloggers have posts like these ;)

I was hoping to link several of the items back to the websites, but every single Forever 21 item I purchased isn't listed on the website. I'm guessing a big majority of accessories became sold out during their recent 30% off sale. So, I apologize in advance for that!


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

It was love at first swipe! Physicians Formula Happy Booster Blush in Natural!

Physicians Formula Happy Booster Blush

-Ultra-soft and blendable blushing powder features a fresh and vibrant mix of blushing tones infused with a pop of color to create a healthy glow.
-Multi-reflective pearls provide a soft iridescence to highlight contour and add radiance to cheeks.
-Infused with our Happy Boost Blend, featuring Happy Skin and Euphoryl, natural plant extracts which have been shown to promote a feeling of happiness by mimicking the effect of Endorphins and helping protect the skin from environmental stress.
-The sweet scent of Violet provides a feeling of joy each time you apply.

Hypoallergenic. Non-comedogenic. Paraben-free. Dermatologist approved.


Monday, November 7, 2011

Oldie but Goodie: Dior Five Golds 5-Colour Eyeshadow Palette + Swatches!

Dior Five Golds 5-Colour Eyeshadow

I typically don't like posting about products that are limited edition from old collections or that are discontinued, but I had to make an exception for Dior's Five Golds Quint. I got a hold of this beauty in a blog sale for a fraction of the price, and I'm loving it!

Five Golds was one of the two, 5-Colour Eyeshadow palettes available last winter from Dior's 2010 Holiday Collection. Five Golds includes a charcoal black with silver sparkles (reminiscent of MAC Black Tied); metallic copper-gold; metallic medium-toned bronzed brown; metallic silver and a pale, shimmery golden ivory.


Sunday, November 6, 2011

Revlon Age Defying with DNA Advantage Foundation Review!

revlon age defying dna foundation review

Revlon Age Defying with DNA Advantage Foundation

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION: New Revlon Age Defying with DNA Advantage Cream Makeup combines makeup + powerful anti-aging skincare to help protect skin's DNA to fight the signs of aging. 96% of women saw flawless, younger-looking skin in two weeks. Lines and wrinkles are visibly diminished while skin is refreshed, hydrated, revitalized. SPF 20.

Sounds far fetched, doesn't it? Well, I particularly didn't pick this foundation up for it's anti-aging properties, as I don't have very visible signs of aging yet. You can say that I'm a fan of Revlon, and their foundations, so when I found an incredible sale on this new foundation, I had to pick one up. What I really liked about it is that it has a SPF of 20, and any extra SPF in my skincare is always a bonus (as long as I'm not being photographed.. white cast - eek!!)

A huge thank you..

Before I start getting back into my "normal" posts, I'd like to thank you all for your amazing comments on my last post. I didn't expect to receive so many responses, especially such detailed, sincere and heartfelt messages.

You have all made me so incredibly happy. It's so comforting to know that some of you consider me a friend, even if we've never spoken to one another and actually care enough about me to leave such kind words. It just amazes me how many great people there are out there and I feel so fortunate to be able to connect to some of you and share my life with you. You are all amazing - thank you for being there for me and for giving me strength and motivation to do what I love.


Saturday, November 5, 2011

A piece of me died with you, Dad...

Hey Everyone,

I'm really sorry for the lack of updates. It's been a month, and I haven't mentioned why, or what was the reason behind my hiatus. Although I really wanted to share with you all what I've been feeling, I've been putting off this post day after day. Mainly because talking about it tosses me into the reality of it, which I still can't believe it yet. Also, I've been unsure of how deep I should really go when talking about it. It's really hard for me not to go deep, because it's something that is so immersed in my soul.