Monday, June 30, 2014

UPDATE: Project Pan REMIX!

I'm warning you now this post is going to be kind of a hot mess. I was seriously considering going off schedule and putting in a life update today instead since things have been crazy with me but decided last minute (6am this morning) I wasn't ready to share some stuff with the world yet and pulled that, and therefore had to scramble to get this project pan remix update together before work. Long story short, I promise a full on update sometime in the near future, I really haven't had a chance to play around with makeup lately and I just don't see that changing for at least the next month or two. You will see as I break down the categories just how much I have failed, but this month I'm calling quits on Project Pan Remix and switching back to a traditional Project Pan with the full intention of throwing in a Pan That Palette once things calm down again. So I'm going to start on the progress updates and ending the the post with the items I have selected to work on for project pan!

Quick reminder that the left side is traditional project pan, center was a rotating item, and right were products I just wanted to incorporate more into my routine.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Whats in my Trash?! #7

  • Ponds Makeup Wipes is a usual staple for me. I have quite a stash that I'm using up right now, but I'm done purchasing these. These are definitely my favorite brand of wipes but I exclusively use cleansing oils or LA Fresh wipes now since those are individually packaged and therefore have a longer shelf life.
  • Lancome Teinte Idole Ultra 24H Sample. Well the color was way off but it was a heavy powdery finish which I wasn't a fan of. I looked really cakey by the end of the day and my skin was really oily too.
  • Paula's Choice BHA9 Sample. I don't really get what this was suppose to do but this sample wasn't big enough to see any benefits, I guess it's good, but I wouldn't repurchase it. I prefer using pure oils as moisturizers because they are less expensive and much more effective in my opinion.
  • Laura Geller Spackle Tinted Primer. This sounds weird but I loved the glitter! It really gave my face a soft all over glow in a not circus performer way.
  • Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel. I don't understand what this was suppose to do but my skin felt very soft and smooth the next day, so I guess it worked? I would be interested in seeing how using this consistently for a period of time would do, but it's not something I would run out and buy right now.
  • Healthy Sexy Hair Soy Renewal Beach Spray. Somedays I love it and other days I didn't. I've come to the conclusion though that it works best on damp or wet hair, because putting it on dry hair was a little drying.
  • Garnier Fructis Fall Fight Shampoo & Conditioner Samples. I actually LOVED this! It made my hair feel so soft, and I do have a severe shedding problem (but I also have very thick hair and lots of it), so I might actually pick up the full size of the shampoo once I finish up the bottle I have now.
  • Spa Therapy Body Wash. Ew no. This smelled like cheap generic hotel body wash and I just hated it so much.
  • YSL BB Cream & Foundation Sample. So this sampler said to use the BB as a base and put the foundation over it. I loved the BB cream it looked amazing (even though the color was a little too light) but the foundation had a very dewy finish and that day did not end so well for my makeup...
  • Benefit's Hello Flawless Primer Sample. This is another one where people seem to love it or hate and I definitely hated it. It made my skin feel oily and therefore did not do a good job tacking on the foundation.
  • Cover Girl Flamed Out Mascara. This was featured in my Project Pan and I really do like this mascara but I have so many mascaras that I've received in various boxes, gifts and samples that I don't need to run out and get it. Eventually though I probably will pick it up again.
  • Stila Lip Glaze. Another Project Pan victim. I'm not a fan of the color so I wouldn't get this again.
  • Anastasia Brow Wiz. I loved you, until I figured out you were pulling out my already sparse brow hairs...It's still a great pencil in that the color is great and the skinny size makes for a very natural brow, but I would like to keep what brow hairs I do have so I won't be picking this up again. I am interested in trying out their dip brow though!
  • Maybelline Clear Mascara. So I guess this isn't technically used up, but it's so nasty at this point it's just time for a new one. I use this to set my brows and it's pretty decent, I don't really know what I'm looking for but I hear the Milani one is better. I had a back up already waiting for me but once I finish that I think I'm going to try the Milani one.
  • Perfume Samples. Just a big handful of them. Again project pan, there were likes and dislikes but one perfume I definitely want to buy eventually is the Juicy Couture Couture La La Malibu (that's a mouthful). It smells soooo good and girly and just me in a bottle basically.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Top 5 Summer Perfume Picks!

Before there was makeup for me, there was perfume and at this point I have amassed quite a collection. I'm definitely somebody who separates scents based on seasons and usually have my signature scent for the year. Thought it would be fun to share some past summer picks and just classic favorites. I'm going to attempt to describe the smell, but I don't think it will make any sense because I'm awful at it so I'll also include the descriptions off the websites. Opinions are totally mine though. These are in no particular order, but I will say that my current favorite fragrance that I've been wearing all day everyday is the Juicy Couture Malibu one! Just my current obsession.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Review: Covergirl Ready, Set, Gorgeous Foundation

I'm going to preface this post by saying I have very oily skin. I found dramatic differences in my experience with the vast majority so I suspect it may have to do with my skin more than anything. My skin is oily to the point where after maybe 30 minutes of washing it there's already a noticeable sheen of oil on my skin. With that being said, I was VERY excited to pick up the Covergirl Ready, Set Gorgeous Foundation, especially since I found it at Walmart for around $6! This item isn't even on their website yet, so I'm kind of confused how I was able to get my hands on it already. I'm in the shade Classic Tan which is just a HINT too dark for me, but seeing as it's only the beginning of summer I'm confident that I will tan up. This is an oil free makeup that claims to blend easily to even skin tone for a flawless look, shine free look that lasts all day, and that won't clog pores. It comes in the same range of shades as the Stay Fabulous foundation which is helpful because you can pick up the same color for these two products.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

New Years Resolution Check In!

I thought it would be fun to revisit my list and see how I'm doing now that basically half the year is over! I must say this is the longest that I have managed to keep resolutions on my mind and I'm pleasantly surprised at how things are turning out for me. For those interested on reading up on the five things I've vowed to do, you will find a more in-depth look into exactly what each resolution entails. Now onto my progress report!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Nails of the Week #3: Jelly Sandwich w/ Essie & OPI!

So I'm loving NotW so much more than Mani Mondays just because I can change up my polish all the time (and start using my favorite Essie again). Finally I'm starting to get a little adventurous and attempting some fun nail art, so this week I tried out a jelly sandwich! So a jelly sandwich isn't a delicious treat but rather a base color, followed by some glitter, and then a sheer color on top which transforms the glitter and basically makes a custom nail polish color for you. I've never done this before so I tried a few different things and my final product was the result of five different polishes! 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Summer Bucket List

I know I said no more lists on this blog, but this is non product list! I've never actually came up with a list of summer activities that I hope to indulge in so I thought this year would be perfect to chronicle it all on my blog. I'm hoping to do some more photo heavy posts so I can start keeping track of memories here for me to look back on (good and bad) and I think knocking some things off my bucket list would be a great way to transition into doing that.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Best Acne Fighting Products!

Acne was not my friend all through high school and into my college years. I tried a bunch of different products before I found my holy mix of goodies and today I would like to share what worked out really well for me. This is by no means a wake up with perfect skin the next day tutorial, everyone's skin and body chemistry is different so it's a matter of trying a bunch of things until you find what works for you. This is just an idea of some of my favorite products, the majority of which you can find at your local drugstore!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Review: Dupe? elf St. Lucia vs. NARS Orgasm/Laguna

Can I ramble for a bit? I must admit that I had wanted to do this for ages, I got both of these a few months ago but for some reason this is just one of those that just kept getting pushed back in favor of other posts. Finally I just sat myself down and was like just do it. Here comes the age old question of does a $3 dupe really exist for a $40 duo?? This has been long debated for years but I really wanted to try it out myself so I went out and picked up both the elf Blusher/Bronzer duo in St. Lucia as well as the NARS Orgasm and Laguna duo. Right away you can see the packaging is basically the same, as well as the size and amount of product. Just looking at them side to side there is a noticeable difference between the shades.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

An Open Letter to the High School Graduate

It's been two years now since I've graduated college and I've found myself reflecting for a few days now both on how great my college experience was, and as well as things I wish I knew before starting college. Naturally that reminded me it's not just the 21/22 year-olds graduating right now but those 17/18 year-olds are taking the steps out of their comfortable hometowns to who knows where around the country. So here it is, my open letter to the high school graduate.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Nails of the Week #2: OPI Sheer Tints in Watercolor Manicure

So the technique definitely needs some work but this week I did an awesome watercolor manicure using the OPI Sheer Tints! These polishes definitely weren't what I was expecting so the result is a little messy. I was under the impression that they were just colored top coats so I was thinking a much thinner formula, definitely not. They were quite thick and VERY sheer, so it was tricky to get the balance between enough color without delivering a gelatinous blob on my nail. I ended up with a bunch of air bubbles, as well as a design that started cracking in one day. While the bubbles bothered me (as usual) I thought the cracks were actually find because then it looked like cool stained glass, but then when large chunks started cracking and breaking off, not so cool anymore. Anyways I think the outcome (when done right) is beautiful, this is the PERFECT type of manicure that these tints were designed for and so easy to do! Just layering the colors however you like over a white base, it looks so complicated and pretty with very little effort.

Friday, June 13, 2014

UnBoxing Match! June 2014 Ipsy vs. Birchbox vs. Beauty Box 5

I'm in awe, this has never happened before. Ipsy, Birchbox AND Beauty Box 5 all arrived on the same day! Not only the same day but RIDICULOUSLY early, like June 10th! This was the greatest surprise ever after a very bad and very stressful day. I was only expecting BB5 to come since Ipsy and Birchbox hadn't even sent out tracking codes yet!

For those of you who are unfamiliar with these services, Ipsy and Birchbox are two custom beauty subscription boxes that come monthly. Both of these cost $10 a month and each arrive with 4-6 different goodies ranging from sad little foil packets to full size products! Beauty Box 5 costs a little more at $12 and delivers the same amount of goodies. I would say that typically Birchbox consistently delivers high-end skincare and hair care products with a sprinkling of makeup while Ipsy goes more for the mid-range items and is normally a lot of makeup items and Beauty Box 5 is mostly drugstore.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Father's Day Gift Guide!

Father's Day is coming up, in a few days actually, and if you're anything like me you never know what to give as gifts (and you're also extremely last minute). I've thrown together a quick list of ideas, some that you can even get on today and still be in time for Father's Day on Sunday!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Review: L'Oreal Miss Manga Mascara

I must say that my first impression on this is pretty freaking awesome! Ever since I learned about L'Oreal Miss Manga mascara I had been combing the stores hunting for it, so I must say I was thrilled when I found it last week at my local Walmart and purchased it as my allotted monthly drugstore pick. Normally I don't review mascaras because I find that difficult to do for pictures, etc. but I am so impressed with this stuff that I had to make an exception! So I picked up this tube in Blackest Black for about $6.49 which is an absolute steal. This is apart of the L'Oreal Voluminous collection and it promises to deliver a punch of volume and Manga-esque lashes. Those who aren't familiar with Manga just need to know that it is what Japanese comics are called and the girls are drawn with fat, spiky lashes. That being said this is a clumpy mascara, so people who aren't fans of spider lashes will probably hate this.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Review: CARGO Swimmables Water Resistant Blush

These babies have been lurking in my extra makeup stash for awhile now and since it's summertime, it seems like the perfect time to pull them out! These Cargo Swimmables Water Resistant Blushes retail for $26.00 but I snagged them at a discount off HauteLook awhile ago. These promise to be sweatproof and weatherproof that have been tested by the make-up artists for Dancing With The Stars and they found that they stood up to hours of dancing. This longwearing formula is made to withstand moisture and is specially formulate with unique silicone-coated powder. These come in three colors Los Cabos (soft tangerine), Ibiza (shimmering hot pink), and Bali (medium rose pink). I picked up all three so onto my thoughts and swatches!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Mani Monday #20: POP Beauty

Raise your hand if you think this color is coral, no one? Yeah that's what I thought too. Even though it is called cute coral, I see nothing coral but a lot definitely cute about it. So this is the only one that is not a cream finish that I've tested out, it has a slight frosty sheen but after a fiasco of trying to apply the cream baby pink and a pretty much failed Mani Monday week that just threw off my whole schedule, I decided it would be okay to make this exception. This color went on really nicely and I could have gotten away with one coat but two nails turned out a little streaky so I put on a second coat for all the nails just to be fair. A bottle of POP Beauty will set you back $10, a little pricey in my opinion. I've seen these in select Walgreens and I believe Ulta carries POP Beauty? I ordered mine off HauteLook ($4!) but be prepared for the long wait if you decide to do that too.

Mani Monday is a weekly feature where I put a different brand of nail polish to a 7 day test. I chronicle my activities for each day with thoughts of things that could potentially attribute to chipping my polish. This week applied two coats of POP Beauty's Cute Coral. There will be a full list and links to all previous Mani Mondays at the end of this post.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Amusement Park Essentials

The weather is getting warmer and suddenly staying in bed all day with Netflix isn't such an attractive Saturday afternoon. Now that summer is here (or at least it sure feels like it to me) I tend to pull myself out of my hermitage and venture out into the real world. One of my favorite activities during hot weather is to hit up the local amusement park. While I wish I was already in LA and within driving distance to Disneyland, there are still some pretty good options around where I live. After being a season pass holder last year I've discovered some essentials that are completely necessary for a trip to the park.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Unboxing: Influenster Spring Fling VoxBox!

I signed up for Influenster awhile ago and never expected to receive anything from them, but surprisingly enough pretty quickly I was sent two qualifier quizzes and on the second one I received the email that I was in! I qualified for the Spring Fling VoxBox and after many sneak peeks and giddy anticipation this beauty finally arrived in the mail! Here's a quick unboxing and some first impression thoughts on what came in this box! First of all it came jam packed with goodies and I was more than pleased to see that most of them were beauty related, but a little sad that there were no snacks or treats! I was lucky enough to be selected for the bonus item this box which gave me a little laugh that I'll let you all in on later. 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

How To Be Smart While Sun Tanning

This might be a little controversial seeing as everyone and their dog's are out there advocating self-tanning by the use of sprays and lotions, but I'm definitely someone who is a not a fan of that. So today I really would like to share some tips on how to be smart while tanning naturally because no amount of convincing will get me to switch over to other forms, but it never hurts to do it safely. You really don't find too much information about this out there without some shaming into using sunscreen or the likes so I'm here to share a few things that I've picked up through the years.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

May 2014 UNfavorites & Face Wash Check In!

I'm going to let you all in on a secret. I have this weird thing when it comes to lists (you all kind of got that sense in my spending ban post), but basically everyday I like to make a ridiculously long list of things to do and then I get great satisfaction with crossing things off. The same thing happens with blog posts, I'll come up with a list of posts that can easily be prewritten (tips, reviews, random musings, etc.) but every month my favorites/unfavorites always end up on that list too closer to the beginning of the month rather than the end. Consequently often what you are reading as my favorites ends up getting written mid month, but since it's such a consistent cycle it's still a full "month" (at least days wise) of likes/dislikes. The point of this ramble is that this month ended up being a little crazy and for once I am actually writing this out at the end of the month! Anyways...sadly I have a handful of products that just did not place nice with me this month as I started sampling more products from my stash.

First up is the POP Beauty Nail Polish in Pink Popsicle. I want to chuck this straight in that garbage because this was one of the worst formulations I have ever worked with. It was so sick and nearly impossible to do thin coats with. It just looked so bad and after three days of wearing it (yes this was suppose to be a mani monday) it STILL wasn't dry and got a huge smudge that took off about half a nails worth of color, that's when I knew I was done. I wish I didn't delete the pictures because it was just a crime scene. Something else that didn't do it for me was this Becca Highlighter. I tried it as just a highlighter, and mixed into foundation, but either way it made my skin really oily and caused my other makeup to just slide off, not cute. This little perfume sample of Prada Luna Rossa, was insulting to me too. There's a strong sent of cinnamon which I'm just not a fan of, so this is definitely not a perfume I would pick out on my own. Now this Pacifica Indian Coconut Nectar Body Butter came in an Ipsy bag and the smell is so sickly sweet I just can't even. It's also very sticky as in it doesn't absorb very well and I also feel like it doesn't do anything for me really. You can only take a tiny bit (about a dime size) and rub it into one small section for about five minutes before moving on to the next patch, just not worth it. So I don't normally go for hair spray but one more I woke up with the most beautiful waves from sleeping in a bun so in an attempt to perverse them I grabbed this Joico Hairspray that I got from a Birchbox (seems legit right?)...no, just no. First of all my hair turned into a helmet, but then 30 minutes later it turned stick straight while maintain it's hard as rock feel. And then to top it all off it dried out my hair like crazy! It took two hair mask sessions (pre shower and post shampoo) to get it feeling at about 50% health. Yes, not making that mistake again.

Face Wash Check In
This may be the last month I do this, I'm pretty much done. The Fructis Gelee is done, the Suki Face Wash has been deemed unusable now (it's just rock solid now and nothing short of a pick-ax will help), the Aveeno has about a weeks worth of use left in it and the St Ives is about halfway done.

Monday, June 2, 2014

May 2014 Favorites!

I swear every favorites post I lament about how fast the month has gone by, but surprisingly this time May felt like a full month to me. Enacting this spending ban has really helped me clear out my samples stash as well as really explore products that have been sitting in my collection. Along with that my skin has breaking out ridiculously because it really hates wearing foundation (true story) so I've discovered some skincare goodies too that have been in hiding for way too long. I'm pleased to report for the first time in months there is a really nice balance between makeup and skincare products and I think I've found a few holy grail products!