7.31.2014

July's Top 5 Beauty Faves

Hey you! I cannot believe it's the end of July--summer is flying by for me! Is it for you? In honor of the end of the month, I thought I'd share my Top 5 Faves--beauty products that I loved in July. Enjoy and let me know your faves, too!
1--Mirabella Cheeky Blush: I received this in my awesome gift bag from the SBS conference I attended. You simply swipe the blush on and blend. It is so easy, is a beautiful color, and is perfect for travel. mirabellabeauty.com

2--Lancome Hypnose Star Mascara: I rarely splurge on mascara, but returned to this past fave when I was in Sephora earlier this month. I love the length it gives. You can see it in yesterday's post.

3--Em Cosmetics Lipstick in Cuddle Up Pink : If I'm not wearing a bright red or coral lip, I've been turning to pink. And this one is so pretty and wearable. I wore it in yesterday's postemcosmetics.com

4--Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Escape to Panarea (c/o): I know scents are very personal, and therefore I don't share any on here unless I LOVE them. This opens with a "burst of Calabrian Bergamot and Pear, a contrast that blooms alongside the nocturnal Jasmine and Orange blossoms that define the heart notes. Base notes root the fragrance with an accord of Ambergris, Patchouli, Tonka Beans, and Warm Musky accords." It gives me a serious case of wanderlust and doesn't give me a headache. I'll be sharing this again on here soon. This is limited edition, so be sure to look for Escape to Panarea on the bottle. The men's fragrance smells amazing as well. neimanmarcus.com

5--Montagne Jennesse Creamy Coconut Masque: Okay, so the other products are surprisingly not drugstore this month, but this one is! I am in the midst of a nasty cold, and taking decongestants has dried out my skin! When I'm sick, I'm not usually in the mood to whip up my own masques, so I keep a stack of these on the ready. They hydrate, temporarily hide fine lines, are super cheap, and smell like coconuts. Yes, please! Available at drugstores and Walmart.

What are your favorite products this month?

7.30.2014

Quick Tip For a Faster Beauty Routine

This post is brought to you by Refinery 29 for almay.


Whenever I ask women why they don't have a beauty routine, the number one answer I get is time. The number two reason: lack of beauty knowledge. And the third: heavy-feeling products. No wonder so many skip beauty routines, right? We are constantly juggling so many things in our lives and have so little time. Plus, with a plethora of products out there, finding the right one, and especially the right shade, can be daunting. But today I'm sharing my Quick Tip that solves all of those issues: almay smart shade makeup. 







It is one of my go-to products to get ready in a hurry. First, here's how almay smart shade makeup will make your beauty routine faster: it takes all of the guesswork out of finding the perfect shade. This goes back to the issue of lack of beauty knowledge. The almay smart shade makeup has three skintone-adjusting shades to choose from, not hundreds! It adjusts to the natural tones and nuances of your skin with breakthrough new almay tonemimic™ shade-sensing bead technology. This intuitively transforms to your skintone for all-day natural-looking coverage in your perfect shade. You can see what it looks like in the picture above (before blending). I wear the light/medium shade.

If you don't like the heavy feel that some makeup products have, you'll love this! It goes on easily, quickly (you can skip the brush if you'd like--just use clean fingers to apply and blend), and feels so light. You'll love it especially during the summer! Plus, for my ladies out there who want products that look fresh-faced, natural-looking, or a "no-makeup-makeup" look, the almay smart shade makeup is a must-buy. If you have sensitive skin, you need to try this. It works for me because I nanny during the day--I want to look nice but wearing tons of makeup isn't practical for me. Example: it's summer, and we're outdoors for a couple of hours every day, so I need something with SPF that doesn't feel heavy on my skin. After running around outside, we are usually headed to another activity or lesson. I don't have time to keep applying products, so I rely on almay smart shade makeup.


Finally, almay smart shade makeup allows me to get ready in FIVE minutes! In the picture above, I had 6 minutes to get ready: 5 for makeup and 1 to take a picture before it was time to leave for work! I'm wearing almay smart shade makeup, concealer, mascara, and lipstick (I dabbed a little on my cheeks for blush). And that's it! Boom, done! I like to keep the almay smart shade makeup in my bag for a quick touch up before heading out at night to dinner with friends or to a blogging event. Easy and fast!

Have you tried almay smart shade makeup?

More almay info here.

7.29.2014

Dry Shampoo: Tips, Tricks, & Tutorials


My new weekly series is going to be How To Tuesday, and first up is one of my essentials! I get asked often about my hair--like the cut, color, if it's real (seriously), and my favorite hair products. One product that is at the top of the list is dry shampoo. This must-have item comes in different forms, like clear, white, and tinted. Dry shampoo is amazing at refreshing hair and extending hairstyles so hair doesn't have to be washed as often. Today I'm sharing my favorite tips and tricks on how to use Dry Shampoo.


To refresh hair and help with oily roots, take a 1 inch section of hair, shake can and spray at roots from about 6-12 inches away. This is key!





Let the section dry for a few seconds before moving onto the next section. Usually, just a few sections in the crown area of your head will work. Use your fingers or a towel to get into your roots and disperse the product.


TIPS
  • Avoid spraying all over like hairspray and instead focus on the roots.
  • Spraying too close to the roots can result in white cast in hair. Instead, spray further away and use a tinted dry shampoo, like this one from Batiste (pictured above). This was sent to me and it is for Medium and Brunette. It works perfectly with oily roots or refreshing my hair.
  • Don't forget a clarifying shampoo if you experience build up from too much product.
TRICKS 
  • Spray all over hair and scrunch through hair to provide texture.
  • Spray onto roots and gather hair in a loose bun to help extend your blow out.
  • For slippery bobby pins, spray a little dry shampoo on them first.
  • Dry shampoo works well in stinky shoes or clothes. Just add a little spritz and allow to dry overnight.
For more tips and tricks, check out my video below:

View video here.
Linking up with Glossy Blonde

7.28.2014

Starbucks Beauty Hacks

Sometimes (okay, a lot of the time) life doesn't go as planned. When that happens, you improvise. And that's how I came up with these beauty hacks that have served me well over the years. So if you find yourself in a situation where you need some instant beautification, visit a Starbucks!

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Napkins
  • Once inside you'll notice, other than the aroma of coffee, the area where you dress your drink. There are so many goodies here! One of my favorite items here would be the napkins! These are perfect for removing excess oil from your face (a must for summer). Keep Starbucks napkins in your purse, bag, or car for quick touch ups--not just any napkin will do! Go try it!
  • The inside of the napkins are great for using the crease as a funnel for nail and craft projects--a must for keeping glitter or small beads at bay.
  • I've used the tiniest corner of napkin to repair a nail once.


Condiments
  • The sugar, water, lemons, milk, cream, honey, nutmeg and cocoa can all be used for beauty treatments for skin, face, and hair. For example, sugar and lemon make a great exfoliator for the face or hands. I've mentioned these and other natural Beauty DIYs here.
  • Cocoa powder is great for hiding roots, and if you're in dire straits, mix a little with plain chapstick on the inside of a cup lid for an instant creamy shadow. I've also used this as a makeshift bronzer, but this works better for lighter skin tones, as it has a greyish cast. Avoid if allergic, of course.
Food and Beverages
  • Take plain, uncooked oatmeal (avoid the toppings) and use as a mask or scrub for face/body and even as dry shampoo. Be sure to thoroughly brush out.
  • The yogurt makes a great mask for hair/face, just remove the fruit first.
  • Starbucks has fruit, too! Apples, strawberries, and bananas make excellent face/body/skin masks.
  • The Cake Pop stick is perfect for mixing, scraping (more on that below), using an an emergency hair stick (this only works on the top layer of my hair, but will work better on shorter, thinner hair), refreshing curled lashespushing back cuticles, and for crafting/nail art! Try using the stick for making dots on nails (like in this Evil Eye or this School Spirit Nail art).
  • Keep the cucumbers from the Bistro Box and use to depuff eyes--an old tip that works.
  • Hot herbal tea is wonderful for opening up the sinuses--use as a mini steam treatment.
  • Cooled teas can be used for shiny hair, hair enhancer, relief from sunburn, foot soak, or toner. Let me know in the comments if you'd like more details on which type of tea does what.
  • Espresso, once cooled, can enhance brown hair. Leave on at least half an hour before rinsing away.

Stirrer, Sleeve, Cup, Lid, Bag
  • Similar to the Cake Pop stick, the stirrer (I'm talking about the green plastic plug ones, but they have the wooden ones too) works for mixing, scraping, pushing back cuticles, cleaning under nails, and crafting/nail art.
  • The sleeve can be used as a guide for winged shadow or liner. Or as a mascara shield.
  • The cup is instant storage, mixing cup, and the bottom can be used to trace a circle for crafts. 
  • The lid fits perfectly in your hand as an artist's palette--thinking making your own tinted moisturizer or mixing products. It's also for scraping shadow and adding water/setting spray/contact solution to make a more intense shadow.
  • I've also used the stick/stirrer to scrape shadow onto the cup lid and then I added clear polish and mixed with the stick/stirrer. Instant nail polish!
  • The bag works well to catch fall out from shimmery shadows--a must for the holidays.
  • Tear bag into strips and dampen hair with water. Use the strips to wrap around your hair and then knot. Add heat (carefully) or allow to dry naturally. Remove the strips and you'll have curls




7.25.2014

DIY Beachy Bath Soak

It's the weekend, y'all! And I think we all need to relax, don't you? Add a handful of this make-in-a-minute Beachy Bath Soak to your bath and soak away your stressful week. It's so easy to mix, smells wonderful, and makes me think instantly of the beach. It's almost like a mini-beach vacation. Almost! Enjoy.

Need:
  • 1/c Epsom Salt or Dead Sea Salt
  • 1 tsp. melted coconut oil
  • 1-2 drops essential oil(s) or body-safe fragrance oil(s)
  • container

Do:
  • Pour salts into container and add coconut oil. I am using Skinny & Co. Coconut Oil that I was sent to try. It is 100% alkaline pure, raw, virgin coconut oil and is a wonderful product that I would highly recommend. Your skin will feel so soft.
  • Next, I added coconut cream body-safe fragrance oil to further enhance the scent. Coconut is one of my FAVE smells. 
  • Mix and let dry for a couple of hours (preferably). Remember, we aren't making a salt scrub here, just a light coating of the coconut oil.
  • Add to bath and relax for 20 minutes.



FYI:
  • Not into coconut? Other beachy scents I've used are citrus, like lemons or oranges, sandalwood/musk, or tropical.
  • I kept the salts as is, but feel free to add a soap colorant, like blue, to make them the color of the sea.
  • While I am sharing the recipe for one use, feel free to make to your specifications. I like about a half cup, but have used up to 2 for a bath.
  • This makes a cute gift!
  • These will store for up to a year in a sealable container.
  • If necessary, please consult doctor before using or making this recipe.
  • Exercise caution when entering/exiting the tub.
PS: More DIY recipes to try:

7.24.2014

July Chit Chat!


Hey you! I've got my monthly Chit Chat video for you today. For those that want to learn more about me, see my awkward personality, or hear my accent, check out my video!

Here are some of the July Chit Chat highlights:
  • Drink of the Month
  • Mug of the Month (email me to send me a mug to promote your blog!)
  • July in Review:
    • Charlie
    • My 4th of July plans
    • Trips
    • First blogger conference! :)


Here's an outfit from my first event at the SBS conference! Again, I want to thank everyone for the support!
  • Most Popular Post for July
  • My Fave Post for July
  • Products I love and didn't like AT ALL!

Speaking of products I love, I'll give you a little teaser from the video:

I am LOVING this bag from I was sent from Gregory Sylvia! It has been my go-to bag this summer.

And here I am with the Luxi Crossbody Bag with one of the blogger conference outfits I wore. It's so durable and is of amazing quality. They have totes, satchels, bags, and more!

So here's the video! Check it out below:


What was your favorite part of the video?

PS: What should I do for my 100th video?

7.23.2014

Summer Beauty Haul & Tutorial

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WalgreensBeauty #CollectiveBias



My sis and I recently had too much fun strolling the aisles of the drugstore to see all of the latest summer beauty products, and luckily we were able to find everything at Walgreens. They've got it all for those summer beauty trends and new products, making Walgreens a super convenient beauty destination. Today I'm going to share a little of what was purchased by showing you one of my go-to summer looks. Enjoy.
I started the look with Maybelline Dream Wonder Fluid-Touch Foundation. It gives a light coverage and keeps my skin matte, a must in the summer. Check it out in the picture above.




Next up is my favorite part--the eyes! I used the new Milani Bella Eyes shadows that I am obsessed with (I bought 6!). Here's my summer golden eye:
  • I patted the gold shade all over the lid.
  • Next, I used a crease brush and swept the shade Bella Cappuccino in the crease (top pic). I used a clean brush to blend it out, by using a windshield wiper motion.
  • I took a small brush and placed Bella Espresso into my outer corner in a sideways "v" shape. I used a clean brush to blend it out.
  • I then wet a smudge brush and dipped it in the Espresso shadow, and smudged lightly on my upper and lower lash lines.  









I finished the eyes with the new Maybelline Pumped Up Colossal Volume Express mascara. I love how this looks, especially on my tiny bottom lashes!



My lips needed something fun and bright for summer, and long-time readers know I love a coral lip. I grabbed way too many of the new Revlon ColorStay Moisture Stains, including the coral one in the pic above. I love them all! Bonus Tip: I then dabbed a little on my cheeks and blended with my fingertips for a natural dewy cheek. 


Nail time! A summer look isn't complete without a cute polish. I asked y'all on Instagram which of these hot summer shades from Essie I should choose--I picked up Sunday Funday, Topless and Barefoot, and In The Cab-Ana.

And majority of you wanted In the Cab-Ana! It's so cute and fun, right? It looks gorgeous on toes, too.


Here's the finished look! You can totally see my nail polish storage there on your left--it's in shoe organizers! Ooh, and before I go, let me tell you about a fun promotion from Walgreens:
  • Visit http://www.walgreens.com/summerbeautygwp for coupon for a FREE travel-size make-up brush set, your gift with any $20 beauty and personal care purchase (excluding baby category). I think we can all spend that much at Walgreens in about, oh, 5 minutes!
  • This offer runs between 6/29 - 8/30!
What's your favorite go-to summer beauty look?

Disclaimer:

All products mentioned are purchased by me unless stated.
All pics, thoughts, etc, are mine unless otherwise noted. Publishing or redistributing any content from this blog is strictly prohibited. Please seek permission first. Thank you.




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