Monday, August 31, 2015

Nails of the Week #50: Opalescent White

It's the last Monday of August and sadly that means summer is rapidly coming to an end. That being said, even though I don't conform to those fashion faux pas, I do foresee the end of white nails soon so I decided to take advantage of these last few days for a polished white manicure. I'm still not the best at applying white nail polish to my nails but I'm trying!

This week I layered Essie in Private Weekend as the base coat with Essie in Shine of the Times on top. It's a shame that that the sparkles in Private Weekend really never show up, but with the top coat of Shine of the Times it really is gorgeous. Pictures don't do it justice because it is the nicest opalescent sheen that sparkles in a mermaidesque green, blue and gold. I'm doing horrible describing this so here are the pictures.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Top 5 + Bottom 3 Nail Polish Brands

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Today I was suppose to be posting my Beauteque Mask Maven unboxing, however I'm pretty sure mine got lost in the mail. It's on my to-do list to contact customer service about this, I would really like my masks! But as I was sitting here wondering what to do instead my nail polish collection caught my eye, I mean it's kind of hard to miss, and I realized I've never really talked about my favorite brands before. I think it's pretty clear that I love Essie, that gets mentioned a lot but I thought it would be great to put out my top 5 and bottom 3 nail polish brands and talk about what I like and don't like about them. So without further ado, let's go!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

What's on my Nightstand?!

Who doesn't love a sneaky peek into people's personal collections?? I mean that's why we are all blogging here right. Tonight you are privy to a tour of my nightstand the contains all my essentials for morning and night! I know what you're thinking based on the picture above, it is cluttered, but it works for me and we've only had one casualty so far (RIP laptop charger) so we're doing good! Sorry for the disorganized way of listing things but I think it's pretty clear in the picture what everything is so I'll just go ahead and list everything I like to keep on my nightstand!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

How To: Succeed at Project Pan

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It's been awhile since I've done a Project Pan and it's something I fully intend on bringing back. I'm going through a funk right now of not wearing makeup and I'm sad to admit I'm even skimping on the skincare too. Either way, I must say while I was doing Project Pan I did consider myself quite successful. I was able to work through a whole bunch of different products including lipsticks which I didn't think was ever possible! Funny story about the origin of this post though. I was checking out my blog metrics lately and found that a common phrase used to find my blog was "how to succeed at project pan" which is interesting since that's never anything I've written about. So I thought why not, let's give the people what they are asking for! Here are some tips on how to succeed Project Pan and what worked for me.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

What's in my Trash?! #21

We've caught up! I've definitely slowed down in the products I've been using so this will really push me to plow through those samples for September! All these items will start looking the same since I really did go for just my favorites lately but there are still a few samples and odds and ends that I finished up.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Nails of the Week #49: Matte Cashmere

 I apologize now, apparently I did not moisturize properly because no matter how I take the pictures it looks like I have polish all over. No my fingers are really just that dry, and this color is that natural. Anyways, let's just get into it. I'm slowly but surely working my way through my entire nail polish collection and there are just a few colors yet I haven't tried. I'm glad I picked this one this week because I think it may be one of my favorite colors! I love matte nails and always thought it was silly to buy matte polishes however I picked this one up not really knowing it was one and wow it's so easy and quick to do! Matte polishes do dry a lot faster than other finishes so this may have changed my perspective on picking up more.

This week I have this beautiful nude that is almost a color match for my skintone, it is just a smidge lighter, but I think the effect is wonderful. It looks natural and chic and the matte finish of it really completes the look. This is Essie in All Eyes on Nudes which is part of their Cashmere Matte line of nail polishes. This was an easy two coater that dried completely in just minutes. I absolutely adore this and I plan on looking into more of the Cashmere Matte line!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Unboxing: Birchbox August 2015

This month's box design is to DIE for and probably the best one to date. Like seriously how cute is this box?! I might actually put this one on display somewhere because I love it that much. I don't exactly remember what the sample choices were this month but I remember trying to pick beteen the COOLA makeup setting spray I got last month and the sample I ultimately picked so just right there I don't think there was much of a theme since they were pretty different products. I also picked up a Birchbox Plus item this month which again, (I'm the worst) I don't remember exactly what paid for it, but I saw it and was just like I need it. I remember it being a little pricey but I could see myself using it a lot so I went for it.

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, August 20, 2015

Unboxing: Petbox Mega Treats Box

After some more post office mishaps this Petbox finally made its way to my door. This is the one that I knew would be a winner with my dog because while she isn't a toy playing creature, she has yet to meet a treat she doesn't like. This box promised to be packed full of treats for your pooch and this one definitely delivered for me! In total it came with five different treats plus a toy. There still was a lack in variety but if I remember correctly they did have some issues with suppliers so that can explain why most everything came from the same company. Anyways, let's take a look at what came in this box, a few of them I can also give the Cookie stamp of approval!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Wednesday Wants: Birchbox Edition Part 2

Today for the second round of Wednesday Wants I finished up on the rest of the items I have been eyeing in the Birchbox store. This is definitely more of a collection of random items, tools mixed in with skincare and other cute things I've stumbled across. The best thing about the Birchbox store is that it's not limited to just beauty items but there are quite a few home, lifestyle and even fashion items available.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Unboxing: Birchbox CEW Limited Edition Boxes

My favorite Birchbox limited edition boxes are always the CEW ones! Every year they release two boxes, the mass appeal and the prestige headliner boxes that features a collection of samples curated by the Cosmetic Executive Women Insiders' Choice Beauty Awards list. They always bundle the two boxes together for a $28 deal and this is my third year buying them. There's always hits and misses when it comes to it but it's an incredible deal and I've discovered some holy grail products from these boxes! Let's take a look at what is in each of these boxes for this year.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Nails of the Week #48: Matte Chinchilly

This week I have something completely boring and unimpressive but hey we're here to document the good, bad, and the ugly. I wasn't feeling too creative this week and just wanted to get something on my nails so I grabbed my trusty Essie in Chinchilly and slopped my Sephora by OPI Matte Top Coat over it. I came out a little rough since my Chinchilly is reaching the end of its life and could have used some polish restore drops but I didn't realize that until I was mid manicure. It's not pretty but here it is. I promise to get a little more creative with weeks to come since I do have a few trips planned and will be in social situations where I would like my nails on point!

Friday, August 14, 2015

Friday 5 Fave

Another month, and another week of favorites. Most surprisingly I do NOT have a song favorite this time around! I've actually curated an entire playlist of music that I've been loving as of late but I want to create an entire post dedicated to that with detailed explanations of what each song means to me so that is a work in progress that you will need to stay tuned for. This week I'm loving some unusual snacks, a throwback, and acknowledging something that always tickles the back of my mind.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Unboxing: Petbox Fetch Lovers Box

Once upon a time I used to subscribed to Petbox for my pooch but then it got to the point where she had too many treats (yes that is possible) so I paused the subscription. Overtime I went back to reactivate it and realized they overhauled their whole system and for awhile stopped subscription boxes because they were moving warehouses. Then to top it off I found out they removed her favorite water buffalo ears from their store, and then it became pointless to resubscribe. Fast forward to a few weeks ago where I got an email about some new limited edition boxes and I decided to pick up both. Now I have four different dogs to share the love with so even though my dog isn't a toy loving creature, I have three other dogs who would love to play.

First of all shipping was ridiculously slow. I ordered two different ones and at this point only one has arrived. I'm going to go ahead and just unbox this one first and then follow up with the other box at a later date. The one I have today is the Fetch Lovers box which is promised to be packed full of goodies to make playtime awesome. I knew it was suppose to be heavy on the toys but it still promised one bag of treats that I knew my little Peki could enjoy. Here's what I got and my thoughts on it.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Wednesday Wants: Birchbox Edition

Welcome back to another edition of Wednesday Wants! This week it is a special Birchbox Edition and I actually am lusting off so many products on Birchbox that I'm splitting it up into two separate posts! I've racked up over 1000 points on Birchbox now meaning I have $100 in credit so this seemed like the perfect opportunity to make a Wednesday Wants of a few different items I've been eyeing and sticking into my favorites to help myself narrow down which of these goodies I want to pick up! So without further ado here is part one to my Birchbox Wants.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Unboxing: Nature Box August 2015

I watch a million and one different vloggers and almost every single one of them has a partnership with Nature Box. I've heard about it a lot and finally I decided to see what the fuss is all about. There's a deal right now where your first box is free so I signed up for a five snack box and I think I might be keeping this for awhile because I am hooked! The have over 100 snacks and you can choose to either be surprised with each box or fill your pantry with snacks that they will select from to send you. I chose the snacks in my box this month and there are still about 20 other snacks I still want to try! One box of five snacks costs $19.95 plus shipping and you  can choose how often you receive a box. I opted to get it just once a month and I'm already thinking about changing that! Let's see what snacks I got.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Nails of the Week #47: Tribal Print

I think I'm getting better at this, like I have better ideas and a better sense of what colors work together! This specific design was my attempt to replicate nail stamps which I am now very interested in. I see pictures of intricate designs that are supposedly done with stamps and now I am intrigued since this was not an easy feat to do!

This rose gold base is my handy Orly in Rage and I used the Color Club Art Duos in Black and White with the help of some stickers to make the tribal pattern. I love this rose gold because it is a perfectly even one coat metallic which is a miracle if you know anything about metallic nail polishes. I used stickers to create the chevron pattern and since I was working with such thin lines I just used the nail striper that was attached to the duos to fill it out. Then I used the pen tool to create the dot patterns. I'm a fan. I don't think I used the best top coat though since it started chipping off after two days which made me sad. Oh well.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Fitness Friday!

So the July Ab Challenge was a complete failure. I just ended up way too busy and missing a few days just became not trying at all. Nevertheless I stayed on point at hitting my 5000 steps a day goal so at least that is something in the fitness game. July was the month full of excuses so at this point I really have no excuse except I just failed myself.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

H20+ Haul

I had a scare over this where I thought my entire order was cancelled after waiting a month for it, but all is well and these goodies are finally in my possession. Months ago I received a sample of the targeted hand cream and it's honestly the best hand cream I've ever used. Since thing I've seen H20+ on HauteLook one other time and at that time I just picked up a body balm, some more of that hand cream, as well as a hand soap that game with it. The hand soap was a game changer, leaving my hands soft and moisturized no matter how many times I used it, the hand cream still as great as I remember, and the body balm was absolutely phenomenal. I've been waiting for this stuff to come back onto HauteLook since things were nearly 75% off on that site, so it finally happened and I just want crazy purchasing a wide range of things to try out. Here's my haul of all the goodies I picked up, I can't wait to break into all of it!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Summer Reads

Bet you didn't see this coming...TWO SUMMER POSTS IN A ROW! Yeah I did it. I realized it's August now which means summer is rapidly coming to an end, let's see if I have this much gusto over fall too. Interestingly enough fall is actually my favorite season, a close tie with winter. So before summer is deemed officially over, I wanted to sneak at last one more themed post in here and it is for some summer reading suggestions! The ultimate lazy day activity that you can engage in anywhere, I've come up with a list of books that would be great to dive into.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Sunburn Essentials

Guess what it is time for another summer related blog post!! I've just been all about this season this time around, and does anybody else feel like it's the longest season ever? Maybe because there such a clear start and finish to summer unlike the other seasons that sort of just blend together, but then again that might be because I live in California near the coast so that just automatically makes the seasons variety slim to none. Anyways, I digress. Last month I experienced the worst sunburn I have ever gotten and from that I've come up with a list of must have items to cope with it. It was bad, like very bad. The day after it my legs were on fire and the skin was so burned and tight I wasn't able to stand up for longer than a few seconds because it would hurt like my skin was ripping apart. It took a full week for that to go away and now I'm stuck with the weirdest tan lines ever and crazy peeling skin. So here are some things that helped me through that miserable period.

Monday, August 3, 2015

July 2015 Favorites

I'm dying right now. All month long I had been keeping a running list in here as a draft for favorites and today when I clicked in to write it all up it was just gone. No explanations, no chance of recovery, I'm heartbroken. This explains the serious lack of pictures in this post but I decided to go ahead and link everything so if you're interested you can click to see the products. Don't worry nothing is a referral link or anything, I just googled the product and linked one of the top hits for it. I tried so hard to try and remember everything I had but I know I'm missing some things. Oh well you win some and lose some. So with some things lacking, here are some of my July favorites. I'm hoping to suddenly remember some and if I do I will add it to my August favorites!

  • L'Oreal Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser. I think there was like two occasions this month where I put on more than my usual amount of makeup and I randomly reached for this primer. I forgot what a fan I was of it especially when used with a beauty sponge. It fills in pores very nicely when gently sponged on and my foundation looked amazing on top!
  • Urban Decay Naked Skin Beauty Balm. One of my favorite beauty balms ever, I rediscovered it this month and I just love how nice and natural it is.
  • Biolage Hydrasource Aloe Conditioner. Of course I'm falling in love with an expensive product because this conditioner is the bomb.com. It's sort of a hard almost waxy consistency so I almost didn't think I would like it but it makes my hair so silky soft for days. I'm so glad I went for this huge tub because I just knew in case I liked it I would want to have plenty with it!
  • Kenra Professional Platinum Dry Shampoo. Here's another one of those expensive products that I fell in love with. This is the first dry shampoo that I found really volumized my hair so for those days I want to leave my hair down instead of throwing it in a pony I love a generous spritz of this in the roots to really make my hair lusciously soft and big.
  • Vaseline Intensive Care Aloe Soothe Spray Moisturizer. My savior for some really bad sunburns I experienced, spray and go lotion is GENIUS. It's not nearly as thick and hydrating as traditional lotion but it's enough to offer relief on tight, burned skin and takes away the need to rub it in which is hard to do when you're in pain.
  • COOLA® SPF 30 Organic Makeup Setting Spray. I never thought I would be such a fan of a product with SPF but this is on my list to purchase already! I got this as a sample in my Birchbox and it works great as a setting spray with just enough SPF to protect my face without making it greasy! It also smells pleasant and the sample size I got is perfect for on the go touch ups. I think I will buy the full size but keep this container to refill since it is so purse friendly.
  • Seche Restore. I've needed nail polish thinner for so long and it is seriously one of the greatest things ever. Basically it safely restores evaporated elements in nail polishes that cause them to become thick and it's like having brand new nail polish again! A few drops is all you need so a bottle of this stuff will last forever, and it's a good thing I had the foresight to buy two.