Wednesday, June 29, 2016

What's in my Trash?! #32

Going through some construction lately meaning I've been having to do a lot of cleaning, organizing, and basically soul searching. That's when I realized just how many foil packets I've been "saving for a vacation" and that's when it hit me. Vacations are (sadly) far and few in between and anyways the thought of spending time away from home drives me to bring the tried and true products otherwise my skin will really rebel. Therefore I made a conscious effort to go through a good amount of foil packets this month giving me a plethora of trash to share. I also finished up some favorites of mine that I'll have to remember to go out and repurchase.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Nails of the Week #85: Maui Mermaid

I've casually mentioned this a few times but currently I'm in the midst of a construction zone so the majority of my things are packed away in various places, nail polish and tools being one of them. While I had the idea to attempt ombre again, I just couldn't bring myself to do it. Enter in this gorgeous polish I received from a mystery box and the surprising revelation that such a bright color was easy to work with.

Those lovely mermaidesque color is an indie brand Hula Polish in the color Maui Mermaid. It's gorgeous and bright and perfect for summer. I'm wearing three coats on my nails, I probably could have gotten away from two but I found some of the polish dried unevenly so I had to go in with that third coat to smooth it out. For a bright color, it's surprisingly not runny or thin but still very easy to work with. I also love the scallop design on the bottle. I'm tempted to buy the rest of the colors that they offer however since I'm trying to downsize my collection right now, that's kind of counter intuitive. I highly recommend checking them out though, the formulation was beautiful!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Friday 5 UN-Faves


Normally I would talk about how much I'm obsessed with baked sweet potatoes and agave nectar, or the new song that I'm totally digging but this month I wanted to try something different and do just the opposite! I want to talk about the five things that I'm not crazy about lately. Different right? Sometimes I like to shake things up, but don't worry next month I'll come back with my faves again.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Wednesday Wants: Birchbox Edition

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With the end of the amazing Birchbox point program and also the cancellation of my subscription (I still have 7 months left in my pre-paid year, but as of last week I cancelled the auto rebilling so I'll no longer be subscribed), it's high time I used up my remaining point balance. After next months last round of sample reviews I'll have about $32 to use it. This week I bring you a Wednesday Wants: Birchbox Edition to give myself a list to work off of. Some of these things I'll definitely be hunting for a better bargain so stay tuned for a Birchbox haul sometime next month when I make my final decisions.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Nails of the Week #84: Marble Manicure Attempt

The one manicure I always look at pictures for and wish I could do is the water marbling. You know the one where you drop nail polish into a cup of water and swirl it slightly to make a marble effect and then somehow you magically transfer it onto your nails? Yeah every since I did ombre that one time and it was a headache of a mess to clean up I haven't been brave enough to try something like that. Random internet browsing brought me to a page that claims you can achieve the same marble effect with the help of a cut up sandwich baggy so naturally I just had to try it.

The idea is to drop colors onto a white base on your nail then take a small square of plastic and gently tap the wet polish to get it to mix and marble. Sounds easy right? Well what I discovered is that it doesn't really marble and half the time when you go to pull off the plastic it takes all the color with it. I had success with a nail or two but the other ones just kind of look like watercolor splotches. I mean it still looks nice and I am getting better at clean up so here's my marble attempt! For the base I used OPI in Alpine Snow and the colors are Essie in Sunday Funday, Essie in Resort Fling, Essie in First Timer, Essie in Bikini So Teeny, and Color Club in Pardon My French.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Unboxing: Birchbox June 2016

I guess let's just talk about how beautiful this box is? But really, if you've been following my unboxing posts for awhile now you've distinctly seen my opinion of Birchbox go sharply downhill. It's unfortunate since it was my first subscription box and I was overly excited about it for a long time even though that first box I got was kind of awful. I just feel like that they're always sending the same brands now and things that are so similar that I swear I got them a previous month but in the end it turns out it's a difference of volumizing and curl defending (excuse me I put down I have pin straight hair) shampoo samples in identical foil packages. It's turned into less of an excitement because at first glance it's just the same old things. Anyone else feeling this Birchbox rut? And now they're also changing the point system where you can only get 50 points per year. I've officially unsubscribed from this box but I hate that I had a year subscription so now I'll still be getting mediocre boxes until February.

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, June 15, 2016

Review: Nivea In Shower Body Lotion vs. Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer

I know it's been quite awhile since both of these products came out but seeing these two bottles next to each other in my shower has inspired this comparison review. In an effort to make this a more thorough review I went on the hunt for ingredient lists, fragrance variations and more to really get a 360 look at these two products. Both of these products I've used two different scents so I can give some insights on those particular scents and my preferences. First let's talk about these products separately and then bring it altogether at the end. I guess I should mention this is a review comparing two in shower lotions that claim to save time by moisturizing while you're in the shower.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Nails of the Week #83: Melon Kiss

The name of this manicure seems odd but what it comes from is a color scheme that I tried to feature but apparently my orange isn't orange enough to make that obvious. Overall I'll admit that this didn't turn out as I envisioned it but I got something on my finger nails so that counts for something. I think the problem is I didn't use thin enough tape so I did go in and clean up some edges so when you look at the nails with thinner lines it does look better. I think the other problem was I picked colors that were too dark, if they were a little more neon this would have worked better too. This did put me onto a new technique though that I'll need to try out for my next manicure look!

This look took me a long time to do. It involved carefully layering on four colors in a line and waiting until they were just almost dry to sort of "blend" them together with a top coat. And then of course it involved taping over the colors to then paint the black over it. This resulted in some pretty unclean edges and accidental drops of black in the colors that I couldn't always clean up. I think if anything it's the ragged edges that isn't doing it for me. Anyways, the colors I used were all Essie in the shades Bachelorette Bash, Sunday Funday, First Timer, Hide & Go Chic, and Licorice.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Things That Didn't Clear My Acne

In this next installment about my acne adventure I want to talk about things that didn't work out for me. Again, like I said before, just because these things didn't work with my skin doesn't mean it won't work with yours. Everyone has a different skin chemistry and stuff that works great for me could horribly break someone else out. I don't have very sensitive skin so it could be some of these products just weren't powerful enough for me but would work out great for you. I've had a long battle with acne going as far as an aggressive treatment of antibiotics and prescription strength topical creams. This isn't a comprehensive list of everything, but just things I had tried recently or I can remember.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

How I Cleared My Acne

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Of course I need to start with saying what worked for me isn't going to necessarily work for you. None of these products are magical but by sticking to a strict daily regime I've seen a dramatic improvement with the consistent use of these products. I guess we'll start with the back story of how I was horribly plagued with acne as a teenager and it just carried through college. Now as an adult, I'm less prone to large clusters of them but I would get small clusters of tiny bumps or single, huge, red monsters. It's annoying, especially comparing my skin to others so I've been in a long battle to find the fix for my acne. I've tried a ton of different things and finally I can confidently say I've found what works for me. How did I know that my acne has cleared? Besides the overall glow of my skin now, the key indicator was that I've had an extremely clogged pore on my right cheek that has just vanished. It was just a tiny bump that clearly wasn't a pimple but nonetheless a blemish that would not clear up which I've had for close to 5 years now and after maybe a month or so it had finally smoothed out and is on the mend.

Now don't get me wrong, I still get the occasional blemish, primarily hormonal ones which you can't escape, but overall my skin is smooth and clear for the majority of the time. Even when I do get these bumps they are small and usually run their course within a day or two. Also I get pimples far less commonly on my forehead or cheeks now.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Nails of the Week #82: ??

I'm having some serious nail issues lately. I think the problem was I let my nails grow too long so they started getting bent which led to some painful peeling and broken nails. And then I did a horrible job trimming them, it's just all a wreck. In lieu of a fancy design this week, I'm using my brand new polish that I fell in love with a few weeks ago and finally managed to track down for a very simple manicure.

This week I'm using Essie in Lady Like. This perfect nude for my skin tone for a nice and simple look. I love this polish because it has some slight purple pink undertones instead of being a blue undertoned nude. An easy two coater, I didn't do anything fancy at all.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Fitness Friday!

Completely killed it in May. Except for one tragic day where my Fitbit died at the beginning of the day and I couldn't charge it until the end of the day, I completely demolished my step goal each day. While we're on that topic, does that ever happen to people? This is probably the third time I was convinced my Fitbit just completely died on me. It had been fully charged the night before and for some reason in the morning the battery was just completely drained. No warning email or anything to let me know! You can imagine I spent a day freaking out between the thought of having to buy a new Fitbit, what it would mean for my step challenge, and whether or not the account was transferable to a new device since I wasn't going to go and hunt down all my friends again. Alas it worked out and here we are, one unnecessarily long story later.

Anyways, so I think for June I can finally step it up (hah) and strive for 45,500 steps per week or roughly 6,500 steps a day. After two successful months of my previous goal I'm confident I can meet this new goal, or at least come close. I mean it did take quite a few months to get there but I'm not sneezing at my accomplishments. On top of that I've also downloaded a 30 Day Sit Up Challenge app on my phone, so this is the first month I will attempt to follow that. It's like those images that float around on Pinterest but it's portable in your phone as an app. I'm not confident I can do this perfectly the first time, but I thought it would be fun to throw something new in. Anyways, let's take a look at the number break down of steps from May. The Monday through Sunday week worked out kind of awkwardly this month causing the first "week" to be 8 days and the last to be 9, but that's fine!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

May 2016 Favorites

So I have a small handful of products this month. I don't know what happened, I was just very on the go all month and ended up not straying from my regular routine. In fact I know I didn't keep up with my usual skincare or anything because the right side of my face decided to freak out and break out like crazy. Anyways, I did try a few new makeup products which is exciting and have some new (and old) favorites there. Let's just dive right into this.