Wednesday, December 30, 2015

2015 in Recap & 2016

I know this is a day early but hey, the schedule right? It's never too early to reflect and plan, so just go with it. This has been quite a year. There have been ups and downs but somehow I made it through. Honestly every year is like this, but I'm thankful for this one to be over. There have been some good times. I got to go on my first family vacation in years. Probably not since I was in high school, there hasn't been a time where all four us were able to travel somewhere together. We went to Taiwan during Chinese New Years to celebrate and also to visit family. I was able to go to Las Vegas a few times to meet up with old friends as well as see my sister. I took a trip to Seattle in order to attend a wedding for people I've never met which was surprisingly fun. I've met a great group of people from work and if anything I'm coming out of a job with some great friendships. I've watched more movies then I ever want to admit and experienced my first county fair ever. I got to see fireworks on the 4th and celebrated turning a quarter of a century. These good moments really far outweigh the bad I experienced this year and those are the things I want to remember.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Nails of the Week #64: Sephora Formula X in Alchemy 2

Was I the only one that didn't know that Sephora was coming out with an Alchemy 2 this year? I've raved about the first one, you can check out a ton of pictures from my week 17 NotW of that beauty. But we aren't here today to talk about the first one, we want to talk about the second edition that came out! It was by pure luck that while I was shopping around for something to keep my VIB status that I clicked into the nail polish section. I've been buying quite a few polishes lately so I had no business in that section but good thing I did because then I saw!

The easiest way to describe Alchemy 2 is to compare it to the first one. They are very similar in that they are a metallic littered with soft multi-color shimmer. The first one was more of a platinum base making it appear like a soft rose gold while this one is a distinct gold base so it really glows. It's absolutely beautiful to dress up your nails with and more of a statement then the original. Did I really need two polishes that were so similar? Probably not, but I'm still happy that I do!

Friday, December 25, 2015

What I Did For Christmas

End of the year, all the holidays are bunched together it's crazy! This is probably one of the first years where I did something Christmassy that started about a week ago so I felt like it would be fun to share it all plus some pictures! A few highlights before I just dive into the pictures is that I'll be featuring things from my visit to Christmas Tree Lane (a street in my hometown where all the houses agree to go all out with some tasteful lights and decor, quite a fun trip to make), the Christmas Eve Eve dinner, our Feast of the 7 Fishes we decided to do this year, and some candids of the tree and pup in her Christmas attire. Christmas was a bit different this year which I've found is actually normal for many people which is celebrating it in Christmas Eve. Unfortunately I had to work both Christmas and Christmas Eve this year so instead of our usual traditional of opening presents Christmas morning, everything was done Christmas Eve this year!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

What's in my Trash?! #26

Today the trash is very light, also coming earlier than usual. The first struggle of this new posting schedule is battling the time sensitive posts. Everything I have scheduled for the rest of the month is very holiday related so somehow this got pushed back earlier than usual. Is that the reason why I don't have that much to share? Actually I just started using some new products after finishing stuff off last month so that's the real reason why. Nonetheless, let's look at my small offerings of empties I have this month to share. There's some good stuff in there that doesn't quite warrant a full review but still needs some sort of mention so each item is getting it's own paragraph this time around!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Nails of the Week #63: Nails on Fire

It's really been awhile since I went wild and bought nail polish but recently I've been picking up bottles here and there and the manicure this week features one of them. My nails look awful right now though, they were peeling, yellow and brittle at the tips so I cut them really short to combat splitting and in the end really wasn't able to shape them. Oh well.

The base color is Essie's In The Lobby which is described as a cinnamon plum color. It's seriously gorgeous, and a good purchase! This color is from the Fall 2015 collection which I'll admit I haven't really been on top of the collections that came out this year. I loved how it looked however since I had to cut my nails really short I felt like it made my fingers look really stubby and not right. What started as a just an accent nail ended up because such a gorgeous effect that I layered on Essie's Shine of the Times which is a beautiful holo flake glitter top coat. It shifts from gold to red to green depending on where the light is and it's a really great topper for almost any color.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Unboxing: Birchbox December 2015

I think I'm reaching the end of my Birchbox love affair. I need to figure out when my yearly subscription is over and I think I'm done. I just have more samples then I could use and seriously if they don't stop sending me hair items, I'm going to lose it. You've got a few months to redeem yourself here Birchbox!

For those of you that are unfamiliar with Birchbox it is one of those monthly beauty sample boxes where they send you a box of 5-6 (sometimes even 7 with bonus extras) samples and deluxe samples. Occasionally there will be full size products too! The brands they send are all fairly high-end and they have a point system and customer service staff that just can't be beat. For $10 a month you are able to select a sample from a select group of choices and have more surprises delivered to you based on your beauty profile! Have I convinced you to sign up yet? If so I would love it if you would do it through my referral link here! Feel free to also go to www.birchbox.com if you want to look around without any strings attached to me.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Unboxing: FabFitFun VIP Winter 2015

Remember that first underwhelming experience with FabFitFun and how I swore I would never resubscribe? I must say I'm glad I became a victim to marketing and submitted to the one year subscription. This box was one of the best ones yet and I'm low key obsessed with everything that came in it. My one gripes is that they don't seem to do a snack anymore and I must say I do like sampling a snack. But I guess that's a small battle.

FabFitFun VIP is a quarterly women's subscription box, that provides a box curated for each season full of lifestyle and beauty products! It costs $49.99 per box and it is stuffed full of products (worth at least $100) selected by Giuliana Rancic and the FabFitFun team. Let's take a look at what is in the winter box!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Nails of the Week #62: Nails With No Name

I'm just grabbing colors right now with no rhyme or reason. Actually I did these nails so late I don't even remember doing them and some of them turned out real crazy around the cuticles. Let's just say that this manicure didn't last too long past when I first did it, but here we are today talking about it anyways. Awhile back I got that little quad of Formula X "The Match" that is suppose to be colors curated based on skintone, but I got the ones for light skin since I just liked the colors better. I mean I feel like it still compliments my skintone anyways!

I used the baby blue Formula X in Unmistakable as the main color with Formula X in Invincible as the accent nail. Fun fact, I was trying to do my pointer finger as the accent nail but I seriously blacked out and forgot as I was painting my nails so that's how the ring finger ended up being the one. After I did it I felt like it kind of looked a little random and plain so my trusty Color Club Nail Art Duo in White came to the rescue and I put little white dots to kind of bring the whole look together. Not my most interesting manicure, but it works.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Friday 5 Faves

December is going by fast. Actually I think it also just feels this way with my reduced posting schedule it's just flying by. I'm already having a hard time with the schedule, as in I want to post more than I'm allowing myself to! This is why it took so long for me to back off my aggressive editorial schedule but I must say the reduced number of posts has brought a better balance to my life so that's been good. Anyways, so for this month here are five things that I'm currently loving.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Ulta Cyber Monday Haul!

Technically this order hasn't come yet since I'm writing this up Tuesday night and it's set to arrive Wednesday, but I really couldn't wait any longer to share! I really didn't do much Black Friday/Cyber Monday shopping this year but I did place one HUGE order at Ulta! Ever since my Clarisonic, my skin is a lot oilier and hasn't been responding as well to my skincare routine so I wanted to try some new stuff out. It also helped that there were some great deals such as 20% off all Mario Badescu, 3 for $33 The Body Shop items, and other deals, I decided to take advantage of some deals and pick up a whole bunch of skincare to try as well as some items I've just had my eye on for awhile. So let's dive into this haul of items I got, I'll even break it down into categories this time around.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Nails of the Week #61: Metallic Finishes

So typical me. I see a beautiful manicure on Instagram and when I attempt to recreate it...just no. The problem was I was being lazy so instead of using two pieces of nail tape I just did one and believed that I would be able to freehand it. No. The lines ended up being WAY thicker than I wanted but it kind of words, it's abstract right? I also thought it would be fun to have two different metallic colors, again nope. What really would have been great is if I had nail stripers in the right colors, then I wouldn't have needed tape at all. Oh well, you live and you learn.

The purple base is Julep in Sylvia which is actually quite beautiful. It was also a really nice formula to work with which is such a contrast to all the disasters I've had with Julep. I used Butter London in Bobby Dazzler for the silver of course and then Orly in Rage for the rose gold stripes. I mean it's not bad from afar, except for that left pinky finger, something crazy happened there and I'm quite sure what.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Fitness Friday!

Just as I suspected, movement did not happen for the month of November, but that's okay since I expected it. I feel like the same will go for December too but I still want to make some goals for myself to hit. This month I want to track steps taken! Instead of having a daily goal though I will be making it a weekly goal to give me cushioning on days where it just doesn't happen or the days when my Fitbit runs out of battery half way through the day or I just forget to charge it.

So the goal for this month is 35,000 steps a week or roughly 5,000 steps a day. I know that's low, but I have a very fixed job where I'm more or less chained to a desk for most of my day and once I'm done at work I just sort of collapse at home. It doesn't give me many opportunities to move around that I would like so here's the goal I'm going to just have to go with! Check back next month to get a daily break down of what happened for me in December.

I've completely fallen off the train with healthy eating. Ever since I moved offices the food choices are limited so I've really not been paying attention to what I eat. Also I'm lucky to get a chance to eat and at that point I'm just shoving whatever food I could possibly reach into my mouth as fast as I can. I'm making a commitment to drinking more water again and I'm going back to my bottle cap system to track how many bottles of water I consume throughout the day. The conservative goal for now is 4 bottles but I hope to be back to my 6-8 bottle routine that I was at earlier this year.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

November 2015 Favorites!

November passed by in a flash. In fact all of 2015 seems to be over. Clearly, it's already December at this point! Lately my skin has still been very oily. The Clarisonic isn't doing good things for it. I mean it is, acne wise but it has gotten very oily. I'm still on the hunt for the perfect chemistry of lotions and potions so for now I'm still staying off of most of the makeup unfortunately. I still have a handful of products I was loving this month, so here we go!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Nails of the Week #60: Mermaid Nails

I definitely could have made this more mermaid-ish with some fishnets and rhinestones, but that will be for another day. I was looking at my collection and noticed that I had this guy who was brand new still in the shrink wrap and I wasn't sure why so I went for it. Definitely the perfect mermaid color and it matches my purse and iPad case too!

This color is Formula X in Surreal which is a beautiful holographic mint green. It's very shiny as is and when I added the Seche Vite it just really dazzles. It's a perfect winter-y pop of color and was pretty much a dream to apply, just two quick drying coats! I only had the one mishap with the left middle finger where I had some dragging issues and some pin pricks of baldness but it didn't seem worth it to go back in and fix it since it really isn't noticeable.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Mental Holiday

Happy Turkey Day everyone! I'm coming on here real quick just to say that I've decided to take a little mental holiday today and tomorrow. There's just a lot of things going on right now and while I can't pause my life, I can take something off my plate by removing the obligation of writing two blog posts. I'll be back on Monday and then it will start the new three posts a week schedule that I'm backing off to.

I love you all very much and I'll talk to you soon!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Thanksgiving Day Hacks

Thanksgiving is upon us, like it's tomorrow. If you've been living in a cave for the last few weeks I'll forgive you but for everyone else, the busiest cooking day of the year is here! If you're like me and you find yourself needing to work on Thanksgiving this year (my work is ruthless), never fear, I've scoured the internet for the best list of Thanksgiving Day hacks to help you get that meal on the table in just record time! Keep reading for a list of the clever and bizarre to help you have the easiest turkey day ever.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

What's in my Trash?! #25

It's a product winter up in here. I just really didn't use up that many things this month except for mascara. Yes you heard me, mascara. I've apparently had a lot of mascara that ran out throughout the course of the month. Some favorites and some that I've been just trying and some that I've just held on for way too long because it took awhile for me to piece together that my eyes were burning because the mascara has expired. Anyways, let's dive into the few bits of trash I have gathered for you guys this month!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Nails of the Week #59: Nude and Dots

It was really hard to top my nails from last week and these are just really bland in comparison. I left that polish on for much too long because I just loved the flowers so much but that means the polish started to flake off meaning it was peeling my nails too. So sadly this week I had to cut my nails quite short to combat that and I feel like the length contributes to the overall blah-ness of this design. Oh well, nails can't be on point all the time.

So I went for a more conservative look this week using a nice neutral color butter London in Yummy Mummy and taking my Color Club Nail Art Duo Pen in White to place dots on each of my fingers. I totally forgot about this pen and it would have made my life SO much easier drawing on flowers but oh well. I actually wanted to also use the black pen too and do alternating dots or something, but that one is either dried up or clogged up, I need to investigate.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Unboxing: Birchbox November 2015

Usually I peek and this month the box totally caught me by surprise because it arrived on my doorstep and I had no clue what was in it! I liked that though so I think I'm going to try harder not to peek from now on and just be surprised.

For those of you that are unfamiliar with Birchbox it is one of those monthly beauty sample boxes where they send you a box of 5-6 (sometimes even 7 with bonus extras) samples and deluxe samples. Occasionally there will be full size products too! The brands they send are all fairly high-end and they have a point system and customer service staff that just can't be beat. For $10 a month you are able to select a sample from a select group of choices and have more surprises delivered to you based on your beauty profile! Have I convinced you to sign up yet? If so I would love it if you would do it through my referral link here! Feel free to also go to www.birchbox.com if you want to look around without any strings attached to me.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Sick Day Essentials

I just love writing relevant posts so when I got deathly sick last week and I found myself sitting here last night, I decided what could be better than to improvise off that and write something about being sick! It was horrible, I'm pretty sure it was the flu because I just felt nauseous and achy the first day with no hint of a cough or runny nose, a false positive the next day where I thought I was better and still went to work but then suddenly it literally felt like I was hit by a truck because my body just shut down and I got a fever. Since then it's been a brief decline and now I'm just blessed with a phlegmy cough and a sore throat but on the mend. Conveniently this happened before Thanksgiving so there's no danger of being stricken for the holiday and the majority of it was during a weekend but nonetheless I've compiled together a short list of my essentials during this trying period.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

What's on my Netflix?

I almost didn't want to do this since I watch some pretty random stuff on Netflix, but then I thought what the heck. I mostly like to use my Netflix to watch short TV shows since they are the perfect things to put on as I'm falling asleep and if I do fall asleep in the middle of an episode it's not hard to figure out where I fell asleep. That being said, here's the comprehensive list of everything I have saved to 'My List' right now on Netflix! I'll try and do a description for each about why it's on my list but honestly just now as I typed it all out, some of these I can't remember what was so appealing about them.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

What I Bought & What I Wish I Bought: Sephora VIB Sale

I can't even wait for my package to come before posting about it. I literally ordered this stuff minutes ago and here I am already gushing over it. Sephora recently had their VIB/Rouge sale were you can get 20% off everything for being a VIB or VIB Rouge member. Last year I forgot to take advantage of it but this year I just happened to run out of my favorite mascara around this time so it was a perfect opportunity to stock up as well as pick up a few little treats for myself. I'll admit I went a little overboard, but then I took a look at my bank account and decided I could afford to treat myself a little bit, so here we are. I'm not ashamed to admit that I spent over $200 on this haul but got a nice little discount so it's not too bad!

Monday, November 16, 2015

Nails of the Week #58: Flower Nails

Honestly even I'm impressed with myself over these! Seasonally incorrect but I was inspired to test this pattern out so here we are. It's interesting that my right hand turned out better than my left hand since that's never the case but maybe because I'm a lot careful since I know it will be harder to do and that's why. I actually started this out intending on doing a pond manicure, where it's like a jelly sandwich except nail art instead of glitter, but I was so blown away by how nice I was able to do the flowers that I decided to just leave it alone this time around. Anyways, let's get into the specifics of this adorable flower manicure I was able to pull off.

So the base coat is Essie in Jamaica Me Crazy. This is a great fuchsia with a shimmer on top. The white is my handy Essie in Private Weekend and I used a dotting tool to draw little flowers on three of my nails. It seemed like overkill to do all five nails so this is a much more acceptable pattern especially since at this point it's clearly fall, borderline winter here. I love everything about this and feel like even the messy parts where the petals sort of bled together adds to the overall effect. It makes the design very unique and imperfect. I'll definitely be doing this more and experimenting with different colors!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Friday 5 Faves


One thing that will never get old are this Friday 5 Faves posts! It's been a rough week as evident with a post I made earlier this week yet I always look forward to these monthly posts. There's always a fun hodge podge of things I am currently addicted to, often without any real reason at all. It's been awhile too and I have a new song favorite to share!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

HelloFresh Review

You know me, when something needs to be said I say it. Recently I had an experience with HelloFresh which I just need to share with you guys here. So HelloFresh is one of those cooking subscription box with the premise where you can get a weekly box of meals sent to your house of 3 recipes and all of the ingredients are pre-measured and packaged together. All you need to do is follow the recipe and cook. It comes in huge refrigerated box and all the ingredients are grouped by recipe. You're able to pick out which recipes interest you out of about 7 per week the week beforehand and then you set a delivery date.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Unboxing: Naturebox November 2015

My last Naturebox for awhile! The snacks just started piling up so I just had to pause my subscription for a bit. The good news though, when I did it they told me if I ever plan on resubscribing I will get 50% off on three months! You best believe I'll be taking advantage of that deal and some point. 5 delicious snacks for $10 a month?! That's a deal. Anyways, let's take a look at the snacks I picked out this month.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The End of Blogging?

I woke up this morning and realized the my year 2 milestone of blogging had come and gone more than a month ago and I didn't even acknowledge that. That was the moment of clarity where I'm staring to question my passion for writing. Two years is a huge deal, especially since I was able to stick to this strict schedule I gave myself and constantly improvise for content even as the passion for makeup slowly fizzled out. I started this blog with such joy and enthusiasm to share beauty finds and makeup tips and as the months have gone by I found myself spending less time scouring drugstore shelves and slowly cancelling all my beauty subscription boxes.

I thought this was all temporary, that life and my career demanded a bigger chunk of my time, but I think it's time to step back and recognize what's going on. Sadly this blog is no longer a priority to me anymore and it's turned into a dread chore instead of a joy to maintain it. So what does this mean? Is this the end of blogging for me?

Monday, November 9, 2015

Nails of the Week #57: Ruby Red Nails

It's a struggle between nail art and learning how to paint my nails nicely so this week I went back to that second one. After surveying my nail polish collection I decided to pick up a polish that I knew I loved but for some reason I only used once. This polish came from the winter collection either last year or the year before and it really is a cool polish. I think I need to do my toes with it because it would be just perfect.

This is Essie in Toggle to the Top which is a beautiful dark dark red nail polish with ruby red glitter throughout it. It makes for quite a lovely and mesmerizing effect. I say I did a pretty good job applying this polish, it looks fairly professional to me! There are some finger around the cuticles where I didn't shape it as nicely but overall I say pretty darn good.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Fitness Friday!

So what happened this month? A whole lot of nothing! That's right, I'm not afraid to admit that I completely failed at the fitness thing, and I can explain! In October, I chose to just Google a random YouTuber for workout videos and without watching a single video I created a whole schedule. Well it turns out that the channel I chose, the videos weren't actually full workouts but they were just demonstrating movements to be incorporated into a workout. I didn't want something where it just showed a single move, I wanted full sets that I could just follow along and do, then be done with it. This is completely my fault and I just chose instead of revising the schedule to go ahead and forego it for the month. Best decision I've made? Probably not, but I'm living with it.

What's happening this month? Again the answer is nothing. November is just packed for me. There's holidays and a whole bunch of changes and I just know that there won't be an opportunity to dedicate myself to a fitness calendar. I'm going to make small changes such as taking the stairs at work (I work the 4th floor) and going for walks during my lunch break but in general there won't be a challenge to follow.

I'm planning ahead though and I think I do want to pick up a schedule again in December and I think I'll go back to doing Blogilates. Her voice was irritating but her workouts were effective for me, short enough to fit into my schedule, and overall I had the most success following her!

As for my eating habits, for about half of this month I did really well! I was eating balanced and large breakfasts followed by salads for lunch and a smaller dinner. I was actually filling up on the salads and it felt good to eat them. However at the end of the month I received some news and that kind of got thrown out the window. This month I'm sticking to the portion control (except for Thanksgiving, can't say no to my favorite holiday!) and I want to get back to drinking 6-8 bottles of water again.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Fall 2015 Nail Polish Picks

Dear nail polish I love you so. Even though recently it doesn't seem that way I must chalk it up to general "life happens" moments, but know that at the end of the day you're still my favorite. Lately I'm finding less and less time to sit down and properly do my nails, I'm not sure what it is really but either way I decided it was high time for one of these seasonal nail polish picks! Last year I did this for every season, as well as just randomly. I don't know if it's because I stopped purchasing nail polish or finding time to casually peruse some colors in stores, something has thrown a wrench into my nail polish addiction. Nevertheless, here I am today with my top 5 nail polish picks for fall!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Unboxing: Beauteque October 2015

I know, I said I wouldn't be doing unboxings for this anymore but quite a few things happened this week and suddenly I found myself short one blog post. Naturally this bag came in November but it came at the right time this time and I'm able to put together a quick unboxing and save my blogging schedule! I had a whole post about this subscription service so you can check it out there, but otherwise I'm not going to go too much into the service itself and I'm just going to get right into the masks that I got in this bag and my thoughts on each one.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Skincare Hacks


These are always fun, discovering that common household items have a magical effect on skin! Here are a few tried and true methods that I want to share with you guys. As always keep in mind that what works for me might not work for you and to always do a spot test before proceeding to ensure that you aren't allergic to any of the ingredients used.

Monday, November 2, 2015

October 2015 Favorites!


Guess who still isn't wearing much makeup? This girl! Don't worry that should change soon. I mean, I probably still won't wear a lot of makeup but I'm starting to incorporate some new stuff into my regular routine in an effort to declutter my collection a bit. Who knows, maybe I will fall in love with something and it can make an appearance in the next favorites post. As for this month, it's a mix of skincare, nail polish, and a hair product. That's right, you heard me, I'm actually talking about a hair product on this blog! This month we're going with the bullet point format again with the products. I keep changing my mind about the best way to do these posts so I'll just keep mixing it up.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Halloween Videos

Out of all the holidays in the year Halloween is probably my least favorite. I guess I just don't get it. I like being scared as much as the next person, but the idea of costumes has never been my favorite so yes, I'm currently one of those people who keep the lights off and pretend no one is home while in reality I'm snuggled in bed with a good movie marathon. Nevertheless I tried to get in the spirit of things here and I've compiled a list of some Halloween videos from YouTube. Most of them are from some of my favorite channels, a few are ones I stumbled across while just clicking around. So check them out! Maybe you need a last minute costume idea or maybe just a laugh. Happy Halloween and enjoy!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Sometimes You Just Need a Break

Today was just one of those days and when I'm saying today I actually mean yesterday, this is confusing. I had every intention of putting together a review for a toner today however when I sat down to do it, it just couldn't make it happen. I wasted at least an hour just trying to string together some words and finally I just had to call it quits. Now I couldn't just put nothing up, so it struck me to just vent out how I'm feeling. Don't let the title scare you, I'm not taking a break on this blog at all, but I just wanted to talk about how things don't always go as planned and that's okay. I'm perfectly entitled to taking a "break".

I push myself really hard, when it comes to this blog, my job, relationships, and just life in general and it's not healthy. Every once in awhile I just reach that breaking point and I just need to slam on the brakes. I can't ever seem to find the happy balance of activities for me as my way of coping is just to keep moving and keep doing things. I'll admit the last few days have been rough for me, almost everything in my life has been challenging my delicate mental balance and today (yesterday) I just had to stop. I couldn't bring myself to write about something lighthearted and basic so it's helpful to be doing this now.

Even as I'm typing this all out, really nothing of significance at all, I just feel a heavy burden lifting. Writing is so great in that it is such a release. It feels good to admit that life is defeating me at the moment and it just gives me such clarity to just keep pushing forward.

This is why there isn't a review about toners today, but instead I got to partake in the therapy that this blog originated as. That is what I love the most about starting this blog, it is purely me, snapshots of my life and thoughts archived in one place for me to visit for years to come. I'm real here, everything put on this blog is lovingly curated and developed and it's the one real piece of joy I have when things are falling apart. I may have few readers, maybe even none at all, but I'm grateful for anyone who even just passes through who take the time to care even a little bit..

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

What's in my Trash?! #23

Another round of trash to share with you guys! I tell you it's such a relief to be caught up. I feel like less of a fraud because I really am just sharing the empties that I have finished through the month of October. I'm really working on going through a lot of the samples I have and I've been fairly successful at refraining from buying new products until I get rid of some stuff. This month I also finished some full sized items I've had for awhile as well as a few favorites, so let's just get right into it.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Review: Nivea In-Shower Nourishing Body Lotion

I'm always on the hunt for some silky soft legs so whenever a new product rolls out that will promise that I'm pretty much the first to try them out. I suffer from a lot of odd bumps and ingrown hairs which is unusual since I exfoliate on a schedule and never shave my legs. Mysteries of life.

This isn't really a new product, but I had such an experience with it I just had to share. Originally I got the variation for dry skin with shea butter which I loved so I wanted to try this version since I'm a fan of almond oil and you'd never say no to extra moisture. I don't have to much to say here, this will be a fairly quick and short review so let's just dive into it.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Nails of the Week #56: Candy Corn Nails

 Semi return of nail art. I'm just so uninspired. Even looking at my inspiration post I compiled awhile ago all the colors and designs just don't scream fall to me. I decided to just Google easy Halloween nails and I started just scrolling through pages looking for inspirations. For awhile I thought I would be doing black nails with little white eyes but then I stumbled across a candy corn design and then it just struck me. This was not easy to do since I chose to do it all free hand and the white was being a little difficult to work with but overall I'm pretty pleased with the finish product.

So for these candy corn inspired nails I used Essie in Private Weekend, POP Beauty in Cute Coral, and Butter London in Cheeky Chops. It's exactly what it looks like, just layers of striped colors on the tips and then a shiny clear coat on top. They're fun and festive and not too over the top, just perfect. I can imagine recreating this look with different colors and also a glitter top coat for something fun, that would be very appropriate for New Years so keep your eyes peeled for that!

Friday, October 23, 2015

Unboxing: Birchbox October 2015

This was the month of mascaras. Normally I wouldn't be too crazy about that but my mascara stash was depleting and it gave me the chance to try out a mascara that I've been curious about so I would say this was a win all around. Now for the rest of the box...you'll just have to wait and see.

For those of you that are unfamiliar with Birchbox it is one of those monthly beauty sample boxes where they send you a box of 5-6 (sometimes even 7 with bonus extras) samples and deluxe samples. Occasionally there will be full size products too! The brands they send are all fairly high-end and they have a point system and customer service staff that just can't be beat. For $10 a month you are able to select a sample from a select group of choices and have more surprises delivered to you based on your beauty profile! Have I convinced you to sign up yet? If so I would love it if you would do it through my referral link here! Feel free to also go to www.birchbox.com if you want to look around without any strings attached to me.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

My Clarisonic Story

I fully intended on making this a Clarisonic review but then the more I wrote the post the more it just turned into sharing my experience with it. Now I'm sure someone will still find the review worth of this post but in the end I had to circle back to write this little note at the beginning. Roughly a month ago I purchased a Clarisonic Mia 2 and this is my one month story/experience with it. I'm going to outline dates as I noticed changes and give my final thoughts on the product at the end so stay tuned!

A little background story about my skin. Sprinkled throughout this blog you've gotten samples of what my skin is like. The overall condition of it is that it's combination leaning a little more towards oily, acne prone, and I have some seriously large and clogged pores. I always seem to have a constant sprinkle of acne, usually they are small but numerous, so you don't see them but you feel them. I wouldn't ever say my skin is smooth, there may be small patches here and there but it is stricken with blemishes and scarring.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Unboxing: Golden Tote October 2015

I threw away the box much too quickly but VD? or VC? I can't remember the second initial of my stylist but...you get me! For those of you who are unfamiliar with Golden Tote it's a grab bag experience where you can pick 1-2 items and then you will be sent an additional 1-4 surprise items according to a style profile you fill out. There's the small tote which is $49 and you get a total of 2-3 items and then there is the large tote which is $149 and you get a total of 5-6 items. I purchased a large tote this time because I had my eye on two sweaters and this month it was a huge hit for me!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Unboxing: Naturebox September 2015

I wish there was a way to pause this subscription because I have more snacks than I know what to do with right now but the only option I see is cancel subscription. Someone please tell me whether or not it will empty my pantry if I click that button! I still have two months worth of snacks I want to try so I would like to not lose those goodies! Anyways, this is my latest bunch of snacks from Naturebox. This time it actually went in order and I got the first five items in my pantry, that definitely didn't happen last time. They did change the site now and they tell you what snacks you will be getting each month which I kind of don't like, I loved being surprised, but oh well.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Nails of the Week #55: Virgin Snow

I'm so busy lately it's hard to find some time to sit down and do my nails. It's a real tragedy. I have a few matte polishes that I'm just dying to try out but I lost my matte top coat and it's not like I can slap my Seche Vite on those nails and just ruin the finish. Nevertheless I'm finding some time to work through my latest nail polish purchases and dreaming of the day when I will have time for some nail art! For now you'll have to endure the boring monotone of my nails.

This week I tried out Essie in Virgin Snow which is part of their new winter collection this year. It's a very pale lavender that surprisingly goes on like a dream. Usually my experience with light colors is that they are streaky so it takes a lot of coats and it just ends up being a hot and thick mess which I end up taking off my nails. This one was perfectly opaque in just two coats! I still need to work on the cleaner cuticles for these light colored polishes so in some areas it isn't too smooth and some of the edges are a little ragged.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Friday 5 Faves!

I feel like these posts should just replace my monthly favorites. I've been so focused on finishing up products and trying to clean out my hoard that I'm finding less favorites to share. Now that we are moving towards winter though I'm hoping to start wearing makeup again. My face was beyond oily this summer and it was just no good for makeup wearing at all. I do love sharing these random favorites and musings I have so for now these will remain separate. Or maybe this is a sign that I should do more of "life favorites" instead of limiting myself to just beauty and skincare products. Hmm ideas.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Review: OZ Naturals 2.5% Retinol Serum

Skincare. I think you guys all get it now, I just love it! I've always had oily and acne prone skin, and add on some huge pores that are easily clogged, it really is a pain to find products that work. The good news is that my skin isn't overly sensitive so I can try a range of products and not get any crazy side effects such as redness or irritation from constantly swapping things out. My skin is also very clear about whether or not it likes a product which is also nice because within a week or two I will know whether something works for me and it either works amazingly or not at all. This is convenient for me because it makes it very easy to review a range of products, and is also why skincare products are usually what I talk about the most, and I'm lucky enough to get many opportunities from such brands!

OZ Naturals is slowly, but surely, becoming one of my favorite brands to work with. I've tried a number of their serums out already so when I was presented with the opportunity to try another one I immediately jumped on it. This particular serum is the OZ Naturals 2.5% Retinol Serum. In general people tend to shy away from Retinol products but I must say don't be afraid of it! When it comes to skincare you can get bad side effects if you misuse just about anything so Retinol is not something to be afraid of. Retinol is most commonly used to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles but there's also the benefits of improving texture and tone as well as a good ingredient to combat clogged pores and acne too!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Fads to Try

Fad diets, fads in general, you hear about them all the time. Every year there is a cycle of them that run through promising to be easy and have amazing results but obviously that's not true. However as I've heard about them there are a few that stand out to me that I would like to try so I thought it would be fun to throw them all into a list and perhaps reflect on this at some point to see if anything has ever happened. Don't worry, this isn't limited to just the diets, in fact most of these fads I want to try don't even consist of dieting!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Review: Sephora Favorites Brow Raising

So let me tell you a story. Once upon a time when I first started doing my brows, yes there was a dark time in my life where I just left them alone, I researched products and stumbled across the Anastasia Brow Wiz. Everyone raved that it was the best product out there so naturally have some failed experiments with drugstore products I decided to drop the $21 for my own. It was amazing though, everything from the color to the small tip for the natural feathery look was perfection.

However after using it for awhile I was noticing that my brows were thinning out, and after doing some more research I learned that this was a common problem reported by people who used this stuff. The twist up part of the pencil was very loose so as you were filling in your brows it would twist and yank hairs out. After I finished up that pencil I didn't buy another one because my brows were already thin. Fast forward a few years, I have since found more affordable alternatives that are drama free, however I really wanted to try it again. I went into Sephora and grabbed it but then this Sephora Favorites Brow Raising value set caught my eye and I realized for just $20 more I could get a whole bunch of other products, and so that is the story how this came home with me.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Nails of the Week #54: Pretty and Pink

I'm in such a nail polish slump lately. I've been just doing the naked nails because I'll put on some polish but then wait much to long to take it off so it starts chipping and peeling my nails off. And then the result of that is that my nail isn't smooth so the polish doesn't go on smoothly. It's a whole problem. I picked up some more nail polish recently help get me excited again.

So this lovely color is Essie in Haute Tub. This is part of the winter collection this year and it's gorgeous! It's a dark purple with purple shimmer in it and it is beautifully glossy and opaque with just two coats. I see this being a winter favorite this year and it will look great on toes too!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Pink October

Did you know that in 2015 alone it is predicted that 292,130 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer? And from that it is believed that 40,290 of those women will die? Currently Breast Cancer is the second deadliest cause of death for women around the world. Everyday people are fighting for their lives and at the same time others are fighting to find a cure for this. The goal right now is to eradicate deaths by breast cancer by 2050 and this amazing company is doing what they can to make this a reality. What company is this that I'm talking about? Let me tell you.

This month I have the honor of partnering with Glamulet to bring you this post about Pink October and raise awareness on breast cancer. October is the official month for breast cancer awareness and I hope by contributing with this post I can help even one person realize the severity of this disease. The scary thing about breast cancer is that while genetics may play a role, it is literally random and anyone can get it. This is why getting regular mammograms as well as performing self checks at home are so important. Your odds of survival are increased the earlier you catch it.

This campaign that Glamulet is currently running for the month of October benefits breast cancer research and awareness. They have Pink Limited Edition charms on their site for sale and with every sale, 50% of the sales will go to a charity fund for breast cancer. Check out all the beautiful charms they have available here and know that by supporting them you are helping fight against breast cancer.

We are all affected by this disease so I urge you to do whatever you can to help find a cure. If we all cared just a little bit, a lot can be done!

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Thursday, October 8, 2015

Ulta Haul!

It's been a really long time since I've purchased anything from Ulta however after trying and failing multiple times to buy a certain brow pencil I decided to just go ahead and place an order on Ulta. Of course I went a little crazy and I also took advantage of their 21 days of beauty to pick up some brush heads for my Clarisonic so naturally this has turned into a haul of things I got. There is just one item missing which is a leave in hair treatment that was purchased for someone else but I figure that doesn't matter too much, so on with the haul!