Friday, January 31, 2014

Frugal Friday - Maybelline Baby Lips - Review


For this week's Frugal Friday I'm going to talk about the popular Maybelline Baby Lips.

It took me a while to join this party but now I wonder what the heck took me so long.  These truly are super moisturizing.

The original formula claims "8hr moisture", to be honest, this is not true.  You will be re-applying this fairly often but it's a balm so you should expect that.  These have a very sheer color to them so even though it may look dark in the tube it will be super subtle on the lips.  The colors have a gorgeous sheen to them.

There is a medicated version of the Baby Lips and it's called Dr. Rescue.  These contain 0.5% menthol so they taste/smell like cough medicine which is a little disturbing but not too bad because it's not very strong and doesn't linger.  The package claims that it's for the temporary relief of pain from fever blisters and cold sores.  I don't get either of those so I can't say much for those claims.  These also have a very sheer color and feel moisturizing.

L-R: Peach Kiss, Cherry Me, Just Peachy, Berry Soft

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Jewelry Organization and Storage - HSN Jewelry Armoire

I had been looking for a way to store my jewelry for what feels like years.  Of course the jewelry armoire that I've been lusting after is the Mirrored Hayworth Collection Jewelry Armoire at Pier 1.  But alas, that is a whopping $400 so it's just a teeny tiny bit out of my budget.  :)

I had seen the over the door jewelry organizers all over the internet but when Hope from the blog Beauty & Bliss posted a photo of her new organizer on Instagram I got to see it really being used and I fell in love.

The Over-the-Door Jewelry Armoire from The Home Shopping Network is $159.99 and shipping is free.  I received it in only 2 days which was awesome.  I ordered it in white because I didn't want it to stand out too much against my closet door.

Here are some photos of what my jewelry "organization" looked like before.  I used a combination of tea cups, saucers, jewelry boxes, bags, and even a Christmas ornament hanger (yup!).

Now some photos of the armoire all filled up.

Enough holes for 50 pairs of earrings
24 necklace hooks

Ring cushion and 3 glasses holders
12 necklace hooks, 2 bracelet bars, 5 trays

 I really need to clean some of my jewelry so try not to look too closely! :)

I love this organizer.  It's such a space saver and fits ALL of my jewels perfectly.  One of my concerns were if this would move or "swing" whenever I opened or closed my closet door but it doesn't move at all because it's sturdy and heavy enough (though not too heavy because I was able to lift it myself).

If you're considering one of these over-the-door jewelry armoires, definitely try this one out from HSN

Have a great day everyone!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Ulta Haul

Hi everyone, I hope you all had a great weekend!

Recently I had a Friends & Family coupon at Ulta and I went a little nutso.  The coupon was 20% off and of course I shopped online so that I could use my Discover card which had 10% cashback.  Some of the stuff I bought was already on sale and then really with the F&F and my Discover card, it was 30% off on top of that, so that makes me feel better.  :)

Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain and ColorBurst Lacquer Balm - $7.99
These are usually on sale BOGO 50% so you almost never have to pay the full $7.99 for them.  I have a bunch of other colors and I just love them.

There was a deal where if you spent a certain amount on Revlon you got a free Parfumerie Scented Nail Enamel and I chose the shade Wintermint.  These sell for $5.99.

derma e Microdermbrasion Scrub - $23.99
I've talked about this on my blog a million times and here's my post if you'd like to read about why I love this scrub so much.  

Smashbox Try It Kit - $19
I've never tried anything from Smashbox so I figured this would be a nice introduction to it.  This kit includes their famous face primer, the lid primer, a black eye liner, a mascara, and a lip gloss. I'm excited to try these items.

Tarte To Brighter Days Complexion Essentials Set - $29
Again, I never tried anything from Tarte and this will be a good starter kit.  Plus, it has the Marajuca Oil which I've been wanting to try forever.  This set includes a clay face mask, the Marajuca Oil, a full size blush, and a sample of finishing powder.  You should know that the blush that is included is VERY shimmery when swatched on my finger.  Also, the tube of the clay face mask is TINY, only enough for one application.  That one application is great though, really made my face feel clean and bright after.

Maybelline Color Tattoo Eye Shadow - $6.99
I have one of these in a green color and I love it.  I got the colors Bad to the Bronze and Tenacious Teal.  I've heard such great things about Bad to the Bronze so I was excited to get that and I just love vibrant teal for a fun eye shadow color.

Lorac Rockin' Red Hot Mini Lip Gloss Collection - $17
I've never owned anything from Lorac and all these looked so pretty and the packaging was just so cute!  This includes 8 mini glosses which I will review once I've used and swatched them.

That's my entire haul.  Go figure, that I just got another 20% coupon from Ulta.  They are killing me here, my wallet hates me!  I honestly can't think of what else to get because even though I bought these 2 Color Tattoos I'm actually on an eye shadow and nail polish diet.  Can anyone think of anything that I should try that is not a shadow or a polish? 

Do you have any of these items?  What do you think?

Have a great day everyone!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Frugal Friday - L'Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black Mascara - Review

Happy Friday everyone!!

Today is the first post in my new series, Frugal Friday.  Every Friday I will feature an affordable drugstore product.  Having a regular series is one of my blogging goals for 2014 so hopefully you guys will like this! 

The lovely Lily at Beauty with Lily recommended the L'Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black mascara to me when I saw a photo of her where her lashes looked amazing.

You can find this mascara at drugstores for less than $10 and maybe even cheaper if you get it on sale.

The wand is super skinny, the skinniest I've ever seen.  I actually prefer these kind of rubber, spiky wands rather than the feathery brush-like wands.  I feel that they separate lashes really well.

Bare Lashes
The formula is not too wet which I like and because of the wand, there are pretty much no clumps.  My lashes look long and nicely separated.

Below are my lashes with one thick coat of the mascara.  You can see my lashes are nicely separated, look darker and more voluminous.  Excuse the mess on my upper lid, on a normal day I'd have shadow and liner to camouflage all that but I wanted you guys to see just my lashes with no other makeup.

One Coat of L'Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black Mascara
Two thick coats is where things got a little wacky.  My lashes started to get stuck together and got really clumpy.

Two Coats of L'Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black Macara
Overall I really like this mascara!  I will probably never do two thick coats because I prefer a more feathery look to my lashes. 

I hope you enjoyed this mascara review and and my first Frugal Friday post!  Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder - Review

The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders are ALL over the blogosphere right now.  These are finishing powders which create a soft focused airbrushed affect in all types of light.  These are NOT highlighters.  There are 6 shades and most shades are supposed to work for most skintones in some way or another. 

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder

I was desperate to try these since the first time I came across them on the internet.  In total so far I've purchased 3.  Let me explain.

The first shade I purchased was Luminous Light. According to Sephora, this is a champagne pearl that creates a soft, incandescent candlelit glow—day or night. 

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Luminous Light

To say that I wanted this to "work" would be an understatement.  Who wouldn't want an air-brushed look just from a powder!  I tried Luminous Light for many days and looked at it in daylight, direct sunlight, at work under nasty fluorescent light, regular light at home, basically any light I could find I checked myself out.  I even wore it only on half of my face.  I never, not once, ever saw a difference or any "soft-focus" affect at all.  I even had a friend look at me closely in bright light when I applied it to only half of my face and she noticed no difference whatsoever.  I even asked her, "are you SURE you don't see a softer look on one side of my face?".  Nope.  I went into Sephora with it on half of my face and the girl who helped me didn't think I had anything on at all and even called over 3 of her co-workers and they agreed.  We tried other shades and I honestly just didn't feel like trying another one.  I returned the Luminous Light.

A few weeks went by and more and more positive reviews of this product kept popping up.  I thought maybe I didn't buy the right shade.  So I ended up ordering the shades Dim Light and Diffused Light. 

Dim Light - A neutral soft beige that provides a perfect balance of warm and cool tones to blur imperfections. 

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Dim Light

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Dim Light

Diffused Light - A soft, warm, pale yellow that reduces redness, eliminates shine, and gives skin clarity.
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Diffused Light

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Diffused Light

Diffused light is the lighter shade closer to the left.  Dim light is a more beige shade towards the right  Hopefully you can see them both.

I did the same thing with these two shades that I did with Luminous light.  I wore them each for many days.  I tested half a face each, whole face, different lighting, etc.  I've also taken a TON of photos in all kinds of light and examined each and every one.  To be honest, I only saw a SLIGHT difference.  Certainly not a difference worth $45!

I just don't understand how everyone is so excited about this.  Even when I watch videos or look at photos, I don't see the big deal when they themselves always say, "WOW, I can really see a difference!".  Sometimes I think that people see what they want to see.  Or maybe I'm just too picky?  I don't know!

Regardless, I've decided to keep Dim Light (the beige shade).  If I'm being honest with myself I'm only keeping it because I want to keep using it in hopes that all of a sudden I see SOMETHING and think, "oh THIS is what everyone is raving about!".

Have you guys tried the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders?  What do you think?  I really feel like I'm all alone in not loving this product.

Monday, January 20, 2014

January Ipsy Bag

Hi beauties!  I hope you all had a great weekend.  Do you have today off?  I do and I may be sleeping in as you're reading this.  :)

The theme for this month's Ipsy Bag is 19 Reasons 2014 will be Amazing.  It's probably because of the 19 brands Ipsy worked with for this month's bag.  I'm totally guessing since there's 19 brand logos on the insert that came with the bag.  In case you haven't heard, Ipsy is a monthly beauty subscription service.  For just $10 a month you receive 4-6 deluxe or full sized beauty items all in a really cute little makeup bag. 

This month's bag is light blue with outlines of beauty products like lipsticks and lotions.  It kind of reminds me of a city skyline.  This bag is probably the least cute one I've received since being an Ipsy subscriber.  This month I received 5 items in my bag.

Absolute! Makeup Cleansing Tissues - $6.99 for full size (60 tissues)
This is a packet of 10 tissues.  I always save my cleansing tissues for when I travel so I haven't tried these yet but I'm sure they're just fine.

LeeAnni Eco 3 in 1 Revolution -$29.98 for full size
This is a toner, serum, and moisturizer in one.  I've never heard of this brand and this sample is pretty lame if you ask me.  This is no better than a sample I could get by walking into Sephora and asking them to put one together for me. 

Elizabeth Mott Smooth Shadow Creamy Eye Pencil in Penny - $14.99 for full size
This is about half of a full size so it's worth about $7.50.  I loved the copper color of this but when I tried to swatch it, it crumbled!  Not only that, it doesn't even twist up.  There's nothing to this pencil except the tip which you see.  Does any else's twist up?  I did send an email to Ipsy so we'll see if they'll send me a new one.  They are known to have excellent customer service so I'm hopeful.
Update: Thanks to my lovely commenters I was informed that this pencil can actually be sharpened, who knew!  It certainly doesn't look like it but I tried and sure enough, it's sharpened and all is well.  Thanks ladies! :)

MicaBeauty Tinted Lip Balm in #6 Fiesta- $25.78
The full size of this comes with a brush.  I don't know if the jar that we got is full size and they just didn't give us the brush or what.  The color is gorgeous and very pigmented but it doesn't feel "balmy" at all.   Also, I don't like lip products that I have to touch.  I'll probably only use this around the house so I can wash my hands right before I decide to put it on.

Sexy Hair Healthy Sexy Hair Soy Tri-Wheat Leave In Conditioner - $17.95 for full size
This is a good sized sample and will last me a while.  I just used it earlier tonight and it made my damp hair a little easier to comb through.  It also has a nice scent.

I did not receive any full size products this month which is surprising.  I have to say, this is probably the least exciting bag I've received from Ipsy ever.  The only things that I'm excited about are the leave in conditioner and the eye pencil which broke, ugh!  That said, this bag is worth more than the $10 that I paid for it so that's still good.  This bag aside, Ipsy really IS a great beauty subscription service and if you'd like to sign up you can use my referral link by clicking on Ipsy anywhere in this post.

Did you get your Ipsy bag yet?   Did we get any of the same items?

Side Note: I was in a Twitter chat earlier and got to chatting with a few other beauty bloggers and we discussed how there are so few beauty bloggers in their 30s, like us.  So we decided to start a new Twitter chat on Sundays at 4pm EST (9pm UK time) with the hashtag #30sbloggers.  Please check out Sarah's blog post, Young Hearts Run Free where she talks all about it!  We hope to chat with you next Sunday!

Friday, January 17, 2014

My Fitness Pal - Weight Loss & Fitness App Description and Review

Happy Friday!

Today I'm doing a different type of post.  It's not about makeup or a beauty's actually about an app!

My Fitness Pal is a free smartphone app that tracks your diet and workouts.  You create a profile by entering your height, weight, activity level, and enter a weight loss (or gain) goal.  For example, you can enter that you want to be a certain weight and that you want to lose 1 pound per week.  MFP (as I like to call it) takes that information and comes up with your caloric intake goal per day. 

Every day, you enter items into your food diary.  MFP has millions of foods in its database and it's rare that I have to enter anything manually (Disclaimer: I do not cook.  People who cook may have to add things in manually).  There's also a barcode scanner and I've never scanned anything that wasn't in the database.   Most foods and drinks at major chains (Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, Cheesecake Factory, etc.) are in the database.

You enter your workouts as either Cardiovascular or Strength.  If you enter that you went on a 30 minute brisk walk, it uses your information to calculate the amount of calories you've burned.  I'm sure this is not 100% accurate but it's good enough for me.  There are some workouts that aren't in the exercise database, like videos. 

When you enter a workout, MFP adds the amount of calories you've burned to the amount of calories you're allowed for the day.  Basically you would earn yourself 200 calories if you burned 200 calories doing a workout.  By the way, I totally enter a "slow pace" walk if I walk around the mall or Target for a while! :)

It's not all about calories though.  If you're interested, you can keep track of your other nutrients such as protein, fat, sugar, and carbs. 

This is also a social app.  You can add friends and allow them to see your food diary by making it public.  I know some folks may not like this but me and my friends like it.  It's mostly for fun like, "hey did you see all the crap I ate yesterday?" :)

If you'd like to, you can track your weight by entering it daily, weekly, monthly, or whenever you like.

Those are the parts of the app that I use.  I'm sure there are lots of other things it does, I just don't know about them.

I've been on My Fitness Pal sine May of 2013 and I love it!  I've missed logging in only 3 days and that's because I was on vacation.  It really helps me keep track of what I'm eating.  I've lost a few pounds since I started which is exciting (a few pounds really shows on me because I'm petite).

Working out is a whole other issue though!  What's sad is that I wrote a post in September HERE about how I was totally "into" working out at the time and I'm pretty sure shortly after writing that post I just stopped.  I hope to get back into it in the next few weeks.  We'll see.

I hope this post was informative to anyone thinking about doing a weight loss app!  I hope it wasn't too boring with the lack of fun makeup photos! :)

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

TAG - Bloggers Made Me Buy...

Hello Beauties!  The lovely Chelsea over at Tiger Love Beauty created this fun blogger Tag and tagged me.  This tag allows me to acknowledge my fellow bloggers who influenced (enabled haha) my recent beauty purchases.  To be honest, I would say that almost 100% of my beauty purchases since I began blogging are because I've seen it being used or reviewed from a fellow blogger our Youtuber. 

Rules of the tag:
1. Link back to the person who tagged you
2. Name at least four products you’ve been influenced to buy
3. Link back to the person who influenced to buy each product
4. Nominate a few others to do the tag

  Ben Nye Banana Powder
The beautiful Liz from My Pretty Obsessions recommended this product to me when I was asking about light setting powders.  I've used it a couple of times so far and I really like it.  Thanks Liz!

Urban Decay Vice 2 Palette
I first learned about this palette from my 2 favorite beauty Youtubers, Coffee Break with Dani, and Shades of Kassie.  Of course it's been reviewed a million times from other bloggers out there, including myself HERE.  I love this palette!

Revlon Lip Butters & L'Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black Mascara

The gorgeous Lily from Beauty with Lily recommended these products to me.  She wrote about the Lip Butters and just had me sold!  She told me about the Telescopic Carbon Black when I saw a photo of her in which her lashes looked amazing.  I like these both so far!

There are a lot of other products that I've recently purchased after seeing them discussed by other bloggers but unfortunately I've forgotten where I first saw the product.  A lot of these are actually drugstore products and I can say I learned about most of those from the lovely ladies who participated in the Beauty Crown Awards.  Some of these products are Rimmel Stay Matte Powder, Maybelline Baby Lips, Maybelline Age Rewind Concealer, NARS Creamy Concealer, Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick, and so many more!

Thanks again to Chelsea for tagging me!  I tag the following ladies:

Julie at Swatch & Review
Lucy at 2Gen Beauty
Elle at Elle Sees

If I did not tag you and you'd like to participate, go ahead, the more the merrier!  Once you do the tag just leave the link in the comments below so that I can go check it out.  
Have a wonderful day everyone!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Urban Decay Vice 2 Eye Shadow Palette - Review

Happy Monday everyone!  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

Today I'm going to talk about the Urban Decay Vice 2 palette.

Urban Decay Vice 2 Case

Urban Decay is my go to brand for eye shadows and if you've ever tried them, you'd absolutely know why.  They go on smooth and creamy, are super blendable, and last a very long time without creasing or fading.  The Vice 2 is a limited edition palette that is actually no longer available at Sephora or Ulta.  Unfortunately,  the Urban Decay website says that it's out of stock so I'm not even sure if or when it will be available again. 

This palette includes 20 BRAND NEW eye shadow colors from Urban Decay.  There are a few matte shades, some neutrals, but mostly the colors are shimmery and jewel toned which is totally my cup of tea!

The case is hard plastic and there's a jeweled UD icon on top which makes it look very luxe.  With the push of a button the case opens slowly to reveal a large mirror opening to a perfect angle for makeup application.  A double ended shadow/crease brush is included.  This is truly THE perfect palette to travel with.

Below the shadows are swatched without primer.  The lighting is weird and my arms are more tan than my face so the colors actually didn't show up that vibrant.  In the bottom photo, Stash, Poison, Smokeout, and Lovesick are MUCH more vibrant and pigmented than photographed here. 

I used this palette for my makeup at my work holiday party which you can see HERE.  I did a blue and silver smokey eye using Prank, Madness, and Shellshock. 

Ok, now the bad...the price, $59.  BUT if you think about it, you're paying that for 20 new shadows and the case itself is cool too!  Of course I didn't pay the full price for this, I used a 20% off Ulta coupon and my Discover card had 15% cash back at the time.  

This is my favorite palette ever!  Like I said, I'm more of a fan of shimmery jewel tones than neutral mattes.  If that is your preference as well, see if you can get your hands on this palette.  I'm so glad I was able to get it before it was totally out of stock! 

Do you have this palette?  Do you love it as much as me? 

Have a wonderful day everyone!

Friday, January 10, 2014

GlamGlow YouthMud Mask - Review

TGIF beauties! 

Today I'm reviewing the GlamGlow YouthMud TingleExfoliate Treatment which I received in my November Ipsy bag.

GlamGlow says: This mud mask leaves skin noticeably radiant and glowing. It works with the body's natural moisturizing collagen to provide gentle resurfacing exfoliation and helps to leave skin smoother, brighter, and softer. While providing tighter skin texture and tighter pores, it provides a more youthful appearance and absorbs impurities without removing natural oils. 

This mask is a dirty gray-ish color.  It does tingle when applied but it's quite pleasant (my skin is pretty robust so maybe the tingling would bother others).  What I found to be really weird is that there are little paper-like flakes that just sit on your face.  It's kind of gross and I don't see what the purpose of them is.  Instructions say to leave this on for 10 minutes and then rinse.

Just applied, still a little wet.  See the weird flakes?!?!

Aren't I pretty??  :)

The GlamGlow YouthMud Mask definitely lived up to it's claims for me.  My skin felt smoother and cleaner, but my favorite thing was how bright my face looked after the treatment.

Unfortunately, this is a very pricey product.  The full size jar of 1.7 oz is $69.  They do offer  a smaller jar that is 0.5 oz for $19.   I have purchased both the GlamGlow Masks (the Clearing Mud Treatment and the YouthMud Mask).  I luckily got mine with a 30% discount code that I found online.  Not only that, each mask came with two deluxe samples of both masks!  If you want these masks, I would recommend always waiting for a discount code.  Recently the GlamGlow website had a 20% discount.  This mask is a great product so if you can afford it, I'd say go for it!  I will mention that there is an option to get the full size Clearing Mud treatment that comes with a free 0.5 oz size of the YouthMud mask for $69.

I hope this review is helpful for anyone who's considering purchasing this product.

Have you tried this?  What did you think?  Has anyone tried the Clearing Mud Mask or the eye treatment??

I hope all of you have a wonderful weekend!

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