You can’t have a good hairdo without the apporpriate arsenal of hair-do’s. I have compiled a list of my must-have products that cover all the bases – washing, rewearing, maintaining, protecting and styling. Check it out! Continue reading
July was a good month. So good that I could not narrow down my July favorites to just three! So here it goes, monthly favorites, the extended edition.
Describing a scent on the internet is almost as difficult as committing to a new one, so I am not going to try. What I will say though, is I am in LOVE with this scent. It is light, fresh and perfect for summer. The packaging is super cute too. What can I say, I am a sucker for some good packaging.
What is better than a 3 for 1 combo? Nothing. With the Naked Flushed palette you get a powder bronzer, a highlighter and a blush, all in one super sleek, compact package. Place the bronzer in the hollows of your cheeks, dust on your temples and under your jawline. Use the highlighter on the tops of your cheek bones and down the bridge of your nose, lastly apply the blush to the apples of your cheeks. Vitrually a full face in one product.
I ran out of my usual MAC Pro Longwear Concealer and when I went to pick up a new one I decided to switch things up, and I am so happy that I did! This concealer is amazing. It wears well throughout the day, does not crease under your eyes and provides such a pretty, radiant finish. I also love the applicator – it is designed like a lip gloss traditionally is and it makes application easy and precise.
Spray lotion – who knew it would be such a hit with me? No, pumping lotion from a bottle is not difficult, but there is something more fun about spraying it on. It is also super light weight and does not leave your skin feeling greasy.
A nude lip does not mean a boring lip. There are many shades of nude to choose from (only some of my favs are pictured above). Between pink- tone nudes, brown- tone nudes, nude liners and nude glosses – the combinations you can create are virtually endless! Trying to find the perfect nude combo, however, can be extremely difficult. Your skin tone, naural lip color and desired look all factor into what nude shade you should use.That’s a lot of factors, I know – that is why it can be challenging to perfect the nude lip. My advice is to try various shades and tones to find what colors suite you the best and what liners work with what lipsticks. The most important thing to remember when rocking a nude lip is to not wash-out your mouth, you do not want to walk around looking dead, right? To avoid this, make absoluetely sure that you pair your lipstick with a liner to give your lips dimension and to keep the natural shape.
My current go-to combo for the perfect pinky- nude lip comes from Urban Decay. I LOVE the 24/7 Glide-On Lip Pencils. They glide-on super smoothe and have great staying power. Ladies, get your sharpeners ready, becuase you will be in love at first swipe! Naked2 is my favorite. It is a great mauve tone that is slighty deeper than my natural lip color, so it is perfect for outlining. Next, I reach for my Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in Native. Native is a really pretty nude- pink, with a touch of a mauve to keep it from being a barbie tone. Using a lipstick that is lighter than the liner is the best way to master a nude lip, if you ask me. Lastly, I top it off with Naked Ultra Nourishing Lip Gloss in Walk of Shame. I personally like to add gloss to my nude lip and Walk of Shame has just a touch of color and tops off the look beautifully. Now, as I said before, not all nude looks suite everyone, so I have compiled a list of other go-to nudes below. See if you can’t find your perfect match to go nude. Remeber to mix-and-match liners,lipsticks and glosses to get the perfect nude pout.
They’re Real! Push-Up Liner by Benefit. If you are a loyal follower of this lovely blog, you might remember a post a couple of weeks ago about the upcoming launch of this highly anticipated product and now…the reviews are in! I have been using this for several weeks now and this is what I have gathered. First of all, the fancy AccuFlex tip (see What’s Hot Now for details) actually does aid in making application easy. Consider yourself the new master of the cat-eye, as it is now super simple. I was hesitant to believe it would be beneficial for application, but as they say, the truth is in the AccuFlex tip! Secondly, the gel liner is jet black and ultra matte, which is just what a liner should be, if you ask me. To apply, just twist the base once or twice to get a little bit of product on the tip and drag across your lash line until you have achieved your desired look. The design of the packaging prevents buildup from gathering, so application is always precise. Yay!
Now that I have gone on and on about the good stuff, let’s focus on what really matters – the problems. The only real problem with it is that it claims to be 100% smudge proof and I found that is not always the case. While traveling, I wore it without an eyeshadow primer and found that it smeared onto my eyelid. With a primer, however, it does hold up it’s promise and stays put all day long.
The liner retails for $24 and you can pick it up at Sephora, Ulta or Benefit. APPLY IT!
While taking a 10 day backpacking trip through Spain, France and Italy was completely and utterly amazing, it did require me to pack the contents of my life into a very small backpack that I had to be extremely weight conscious about. My goal was to be a product minamalist, so I only took the essentials (see Summer Vacay post). Some of you might be thinking, why just not take anything…but let’s face it, that is never going to be an option for me. I am a product junkie and while I can appreciate my high maintenance side, I did want to step out of my comfort zone. Not to mention, if I would have taken everything, my backpack might have made me tip over.
So, I cut down my product list BIG TIME for this trip and upon my return, I thought I would do a quick post about the products that I found myself missing the most.
1) The BeautyBlender – My BeautyBlender did not make the cut for this trip and I had anxiety I missed it so much. Okay, so anxiety might be a bit of a stretch, but nothing applies foundation like a BeautyBlender. The foundation brush that came along did what it needed to do, but application was just not the same.
2) Velcro Rollers - These are my go-to for styling my hair, but I knew in my heart they were super unpracticle. While I did bring a curling iron with me – it got used once and then never again. Most of the hostiles did not have hair driers and as it turns out I was more into seeing the sites than spending my day styling my hair. Headbands and hats were a lifesaver – functional an fashionable.
3) Eyelash Curler – Though an eyelash curler is small and could have fit in my bag, I was making some serious cuts and the eyelash curler had to go. This was one item that I did not realize I would miss so much. A curled eyelash is priceless.
4) Eyeshadow Primer – How did I live the first part of my life without eyeshadow primer? I hated not having it on my trip. Without an eyeshadow primer, my eye liner will not stay in place and it was everywhere by the end of the day. I learned that I apparently have extremely oily eyelids, becuase not even having an eyeshadow (my bronzer) on would keep everything in place.
5) Brushes - Absence makes the heart grow fonder. So true. I only took three brushes with me – a foundation brush, a powder brush and a fluffy eyeshadow brush. While some might try to belittle the importance of having a brush collection, I realized it is a crucial aspect to good makeup application. Yes, it is more than possible to apply all of your makeup with only 3 brushes, it’s just not nearly as fun as it should be. I like the precision that a wide variety of brushes can give you and I missed the details that you can create when working with a large set of both eye and face brushes.
Backpacking was a wonderful experience and I would do it all over again. It was fun challenging myself to only take a few essentials. No amount of missing curlers or primers would change how much I loved this trip. If you are looking for a little challenge – give packing super light a try. It is totally doable and a bit of an adventure in and of itself, if you are a high maintenance broad like myself.
P.S. I know posts have been MIA for the past two weeks and that was because of my trip. As of this week I am back to posting each Monday and Thursday. Keep checking in if you are intereseted!
Whether you are backpacking through Europe or taking a spur of the moment road trip with friends, you need to be prepared. In order to help you pack quickly and efficiently I have compiled a list of the basics that will keep you looking pretty your whole trip without weighing down your bags. The key is to keep your product list short and small. Pick up travel sizes of any item possible.
Foundation or BB Cream - Bring a foundation that is easy to apply. You don’t want to be hauling around many tools, so pick one that you feel comfortable applying with your fingers or a single brush. TIP: avoid bringing anything in a glass bottle. Plastic is much easier to travel with.
Setting Powder - Bring a compact powder when traveling. While I do prefer loose powder, it is just too much fuss when you are on the go. Compact packaging is perfect for travel because it doesn’t take up any room and application is much less messy than with a loose powder. TIP: if you have brought along a brush for foundation application, use it for powder too!
Face Wash - Toting around your full size face wash can be annoying, but if you are traveling by plane it can be down right illegal! If you are carrying-on, your containers can’t be more than 3oz, so pick up a travel size of your favorite face wash to keep your skin fresh your whole trip. TIP: Swing by your local Sephora to pick up sample sizes of your favorite products. They are typically really good about hooking up customers with great samples!
EYES, LIPS and CHEEKS
Mascara - In my book, mascara is the #1 essential product to bring, no matter where you are going or what you are doing. I love They’re Real by Benefit – and it comes in the perfect travel size. Check out my post on my top 3 favorite mascaras if you are looking for other options.
Lips and Cheeks – I have said it before and I will say it again – bring a product that will do double duty for both cheeks and lips. The Nars Matte Multiple sticks are an excellent choice because they are super easy to apply and they come in no-mess packaging. One again, to blend out a cheek stain, use your finger or use your foundation brush. TIP: a product doesn’t have to say that it is intended for multiple uses, for it to be used in multiple ways. Any cream blush can be applied to the lip for added color.
Still have a little extra space in your makeup bag? Throw in these extras to really vamp up your vacation look! A neutral tone cream shadow is super easy to apply and will instantly brighten up your eyes.
A felt tip liquid liner can also be a great addition to your trip. The felt tip makes application quick and easy.
Bare Minerals Bare Skin Liquid Foundation was a highly anticipated product, that I recently decided I needed to try. Bare Minerals is best known for it’s great, light weight, easy to use powder foundations, that are widely loved. So branching out into liquid territory was risky, which they knew. That is why they spent so much time formulating this product to be as light weight and natural as possible. It was created with no water, oil, silicone, parabens or fragrance, so it really is the first of it’s kind. With 20 different shades, you can be sure to find the right color for your skin tone.
A special brush was designed for application, and while it is a nice brush, it is definitely not mandatory for a flawless finish. I would recommend that you use a dense foundation brush of some sort, but don’t feel obligated to get the Bare Minerals brush (It is of course sold separately). However, regardless of what brush you choose to use, you will only need a few drops of this foundation to cover your ENTIRE face. It is amazing how little product it takes. If you are using the Bare Minerals brush, just drop 2-3 drops into the hollowed out center and then buff directly into your skin. If you are using a different brush, just dot a few drops on the back of your hand, dip your brush and then apply to your face.
This product has a really pretty finish. It is brightening and super light weight, but provides a pretty impressive coverage. As with any foundation, you can apply a second layer if you would like a heavier coverage. To extend the wear, I have been putting a mattifying primer underneath and setting with a translucent powder to help absorb excess oil. I find that that way, I only need one quick powder touch up during the day, to stay looking fresh. My vote for this product is definitely, APPLY IT! It is great for anyone who wants a quick and easy foundation application that wears well throughout the day and enhances your skin instead of masking it.Hats off to Bare Minerals for taking the time to create a great product!