Monday, February 29, 2016

What's in my Trash?! #28

Trash time! I really thought I didn't have that much this month, I mean after last month I was surprised I finished up anything in this short month. I've still managed to come up with a respectable amount of empties and I'm pleased with how my bathroom is nicely decluttering, as well as my makeup drawers. Still not putting a dent into my makeup collection however I'm really getting through the products which is a great thing.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

First Impressions: Valentia True Glow Eye Cream & Ultra Plumping Hydration Mask

What's the difference between a first impression and a review? A review I test things for well over a month to really be able to deliver an opinion on it and a first impression is that I use it once or twice and just write about my immediate experience with it. Welcome to my first ever first impression post powered by Brandbacker! I had the privilege to receive the Valentia True Glow Eye Cream and the Ultra Plumping Hydration Mask to test out and here are my thoughts!

About the Company
The Roman Goddess of healing, Valentia, relied on nature’s gifts to heal the citizens of Umbria. Whether matriarchs seeking to maintain their youthful look or farmers seeking help for sun damaged skin, Valentia used berries, herbs, barks and other natural ingredients. We also rely on all natural ingredients due to their protective, preventative and corrective powers.

Just like our namesake, Valentia Skin Care products have been formulated with natural and organic cosmetic ingredients that will repair and protect the skin.

After performing extensive research into what skin care customers find most important, we found an overwhelming demand for skin care that is natural, free of toxins and paraben-free. Natural ingredients with an organic base have proven most effective at repairing skin damaged by sun or wind, preventing signs of aging such as wrinkles, dark spots, and reversing the effects of oxidative stress on the skin.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Nails of the Week #71: Dots and Things

I wanted to try some new polishes so I just grabbed a mixture from my collection and put it together. I'll admit I'm not a fan of this look, it's sloppy and just doesn't look right. Also the topper that I'm using, I have it in several shades and I have yet to have a good experience with them. No wonder those particular polishes were found heavily discounted at Marshall's, they just aren't good. Anyways, let's still look at what I used.

For the base coat I used Essie in Good as Gold which is this nice molten gold. It's gorgeous but the color was very difficult to work with. There was a lot of streaking which is common for metallic polishes and additional coats just made it worse. I just couldn't get a smooth application of it. That's what prompted me to throw the topper, with the flat hexagonal pieces. I used Formula X in Crash which is the sky blue one and Formula X in Mind Blowing for the yellow ones. This just looks bad and it won't be something I do again..ever.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Unboxing: Birchbox February 2016

I missed it and now I'm locked in for another year of Birchbox. I had every intention on canceling but then I just got busy and one day I found that my credit card had been charged. Oh well, maybe this year it will improve for me. I actually didn't pick a sample this time around and I ended up getting two of the samples, and two of my items were things I've already used before, what are the odds.

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, February 17, 2016

Dream Team Skincare

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Skincare. It's something I've talked about from the beginning of this blog and I never really get to the point where I'm completely satisfied with the lineup but I do think I have it down for the nighttime! I have a general idea about what to do in the morning but I still haven't found the perfect blend that works for my oily skin so I'll share some products but not all of them. This nighttime routine also contains some pricey products that I currently don't have because I just can't be spending that much money just yet, but here's the dream lineup I would have for nighttime as well as a product or two that I'm hooked on for the morning.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Nails of the Week #70: Glitter Ombre

Round two of a look that I've already tried before. It's one of my favorites, really easy to do and it looks so pretty. Basically the idea is to take a nice fine glitter polish and create an ombre effect on your nails. I switched it up a little this time around by using a very subtle base coat of Essie in Nude Beach. It's this extremely sheer peach with clear glitter throughout and I used Color Club in Magic Attraction to create the ombre. I love it, nice and simple but pretty.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Friday 5 Faves

What have I been loving this month? Quite a random mash up of things, but in particular it seems to be food. I could easily do a F5F with just five food items but I restrained myself and forced myself to think of some different categories. Another month, another new favorite song though that's always a given. I've been doing some reading while balancing my time binging on a TV show. A lot has been going on.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Demons

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What do I do best when I'm sad? Write. As it always happens, today's blog post is quite different from what I had originally planned. The original plan was to share my dream line up in skincare. Actually more people would probably be more interested that instead of the rambling you're getting today. Never fear, one day (probably next week) we'll circle back to that topic. I do have some fun products I want to share that will make up my skincare routine if money wasn't an object.

Today I really want to talk about personal demons. It's been a hard few weeks for me and at this point I've really reached a breaking point. I'm finding myself reflecting all the time and it's not healthy. The psychoanalysis of my every little move throughout the day along with questioning all the what-ifs is really pulling me down into a dark place and I need to shake myself out of it.

Without getting too much into it I really want to share a little bit about what I'm experiencing right now. Bullies. That's right, you heard me. Now I thought a bully was a concept that I outgrew once I graduated high school. If anything I was blessed enough to never experience such a thing except for one case in college and then now. Maybe that's the reason why I was unable to recognize the signs and why I started internalizing it all and just blaming myself.

I find myself the easy target sometimes. I can be really passive which invites people to pour their negativity towards me. Typically I can deal with it, I have a strong circle of friends and enough great and fulfilling things in my life, but it's those days when everything just kind of stacks up that I just break down.

At the end of the day, I can be doing everything right but there's still someone out there who takes joy in bringing me down. The only way they can pull themselves out of a bad situation is to take someone down and make them have a worse time than they're having. All this bully wants is attention and I'm finding that you just need to let them perceive that they've won. If they think that they've conquered you, you're no longer

This seems really contrary to the ideas of standing up to your bully. I'm not saying roll over and just take it, I'm saying be the bigger person and rise above them. If they are stuck in their petty ways and simple thoughts, who is the fool at the end of the day?

Monday, February 8, 2016

Nails of the Week #69: In Stitches

This came from an impulse buy the other day. I just can't venture into the nail polish section of any store because I will just latch onto a color and just have to leave the store with it. That's exactly what happened that one time, I actually came away with two polishes but this week I'm just sharing one color on my nails.

This week I have Essie in In Stitches. The color is a darker blush pink that is a beautiful one coater. I only had to do a second coat on one nail because I messed up the first coat so it was a little streaky but that's okay. I absolutely love how glossy it is with the addition of the Seche Vite top coat. It's a very nice basic color and I'm surprised that I didn't have anything like it in my collection yet. I almost did gold tips with them but I wasn't feeling that adventurous, maybe next time.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Fitness Friday!

I'll be the first to admit I wasn't on point as I was last month for hitting steps. This time around I just had some days where I forgot to put on my Fitbit until halfway through the day or sometimes just not at all. I'm not expecting to have made my goals this month so I'm challenging myself to repeat this for February: 42000 steps in a week or roughly 6000 steps a day. Let's just take a look at how I've done for January.

Jan 1st: 4577
Jan 2nd: 10159
Jan 3rd: 1679
Week Total (-4 Days): 16415/18000

Jan 4th: 16089
Jan 5th: 12933
Jan 6th: 18771
Jan 7th: 13449
Jan 8th: 19074
Jan 9th: 10203
Jan 10th: 1512
Week Total: 92031/42000

Jan 11th: 6356
Jan 12th: 6977
Jan 13th : 6216
Jan 14th: 7398
Jan 15th: 5918
Jan 16th : 3927
Jan 17th: 3453
Week Total: 40245/42000

Jan 18th: 2533
Jan 19th: 7973
Jan 20th: 4969
Jan 21st: 5516
Jan 22nd: 0
Jan 23rd: 8951
Jan 24th: 253
Week Total: 30195/42000

Jan 25th: 6769
Jan 26th: 7329
Jan 27th: 5312
Jan 28th: 7124
Jan 29th: 9651
Jan 30th: 3989
Jan 31st: 6972
Week Total: 47146/42000

Water game has been strong. I've worked my way to drinking 84.5 oz of water a day and it's really helped to curb my cravings as well as any snacking tendencies. I'm still trying to make the hard switch from a sugary coffee to tea with honey, I would say I'm probably 50/50 when it comes to that. I'm making a conscience effort to eat vegetables with each meal so I just got to keep that up!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

All About My Hair

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I don't think I've ever really written about my hair before. If you've read any of my subscription unboxing posts you know how much I despise hair products simply because I don't fuss with my hair. I have my hair care down to a science which keeps it thick, shining and healthy. While this might not work for everyone this is what works for me and I'd like to share my story of how I got my hair to where it is now, long yet maintenance free. My hair itself is very normal, sometimes I'll go through a period of dry flakes, other times the roots will be a little more greasy, but overall it's fairly standard hair without any outstanding issues.

My hair started out being on the bottom of the list for me. I would wash it every other day with whatever shampoo and conditioner I have, plus I would always brush it out when it was wet and really scrub it dry. Still I let it air dry and avoided using product on it simply because I couldn't be bother.

Monday, February 1, 2016

January 2016 Favorites!

Another small handful of products to share this time around. I'm really focusing on clearing out my stash of products right now so I'll admit that I'm not finding much to love lately. A lot of stuff is either backups which I'm not touching since they are tried and true products, and the rest are a random mash of subscription box items that are fun to try but clearly not things I'd pick for myself normally. The good news is that the steady progress is making a difference and I've managed to sneak in a few new products that I've specifically picked out so I do have some good stuff to share with you guys!