Nail of the Day: OPI's I São Paulo Over There

Saturday, February 22, 2014

OPI's new Brazil Nail Lacquer Collection for Spring/Summer 2014 is here! My favorite is I São Paulo Over There, a cool brown/gray/purple taupe shade. It's a beautiful day in Florida today - what better place is there to paint your nails than by the lake? I also picked up the two other taupe-based shades from the collection, Don't Bossa Nova Me Around and Taupe-Less Beach. I've been very into taupes this winter; taupe is so different than any other color I've ever been "into." It's exciting :)

The collection is available at Ulta here! 

Sunday Night Pampering

Monday, February 17, 2014

Hi! Today was a long day of studying for me, which definitely called for taking a long, hot shower. My favorite way to really pamper myself in the shower is to first shampoo and rinse my hair (my current favorite is L'Oréal EverPure Smooth Shampoo, which is formulated for color-treated hair like mine and is sulfate free - but still works up a good lather, which I love!) and then work L'Oréal Total Repair 5 Damage-Erasing Balm from roots to tips, and let it sit for five minutes. Throughout the week, I condition my hair with the L'Oréal EverPure Smooth Conditioner, but on Sundays, I like to use this deep conditioner to really give my hair a good boost. It really does makes my hair feel softer and healthier, and when combined with the Smooth shampoo and conditioner, really helps cut down on frizz. When my hair is wavy, it gives my natural waves definition and oomph without any styling, and keeps my hair straight when I flat-iron it. It's definitely the best drugstore hair mask I've tried! 

For my body, the first step I take is using Soap & Glory's Flake Away Body Polish as an all-over exfoliator, which is my hands-down all-time-favorite exfoliator. It's got a texture like sugar, and smells like sweet oranges, peaches and vanilla. Sephora's description says that "this smoothing body polish is made out of shea butter, sweet almond oil, peach seed powder, sea salt, and sugar for a formula that eliminates dry skin." Count me in! This cold winter has been particularly brutal on my skin, so I've really been reaching for moisturizing products more than usual. After rubbing away the exfoliant, I massage St. Ives' Indulgent Coconut Milk Body Wash onto my body. I love how rich and moisturizing this body wash is - it's made with a blend of jojoba, shea butter, and cocoa butter - and it smells heavenly! It's also like three bucks at Target for an enormous bottle. Once I get out of the shower, I slather myself with Soap & Glory's The Righteous Butter, one of my new favorite body butters that has the same sweet fruity citrus-y smell as the Flake Away Body Polish. I like it especially because it soaks into my skin quickly, and I don't get sticky!

I wash my face in the shower with whatever face wash suits my weekly needs, whether it's just a regular facial cleanser or a cleanser to help with acne (sometimes I get a spot here and there during that time of the month). Lately I've been really liking either Neutrogena's Clear Pore Cleanser/Mask for my breakouts, and the Basis Cleaner Clean Face Wash when my skin is clear. The Neutrogena cleanser is awesome because you can use it as a daily cleanser or as a mask for a deeper clean. It's formulated with Benzol Peroxide to fight acne and kill bacteria, and I like that it helps with oil control (though I'm not particularly oily, just sometimes around my nose). The Basis cleanser was a gift from my boyfriend's mom, and I like it because it's both oil free and soap free! I once heard someone say that the less your facial cleanser lathers, the better it is for your skin. I'm not sure how close that is to the truth, but whenever I use the Basis cleanser, it always runs through my mind. It's super gentle and has a soothing lemon-mint smell. 

Once I'm out of the shower, I pat my face dry with a paper towel - so much less bacteria than a bath towel, and I'm all about keeping as much bacteria off my face as I can,  and scoop a small amount (a little goes a long way, believe me!) of my GlamGlow ThirstyMud Hydrating Treatment mask. (Side Note: Now, I'd seen the hype over the first and second GlamGlow masks, but their scents were a huge turn-off for me - if I'm gonna fork over seventy bucks for a mask, I've gotta love absolutely everything about it! Then this version came out, designed for drier skins; I had to go and test it out/smell it. I opened the tester at Sephora, and was greeted with a tan mixture, a far cry from the dark gray of the original. I leaned in to take a whiff, and I almost fell over. It smells like a wonderful mix of coconut and honey, almost pina colada-esque. I was sold.) The mask isn't particularly sticky, and soaks deep into my face pretty quickly. I like the cooling sensation I feel as it's drying, as well. You can leave this mask on for ten to twenty minutes, or leave it on all night for extra hydration. I usually put it on a bit before bed and then leave it on all night; I love how my face feels when I wake up, and as long as I let the mask sink in a little before I lay down, nothing transfers onto my pillow. Sephora says: "it moisturizes, restores, replenishes and calms the skin... use two to three times per week or when needed." Yes, please.

If I decide to rinse off the GlamGlow mask, I let my skin breathe for a while, and then I squeeze a drop of my Lancome Tonique Confort onto a cotton round and smooth it into my skin. I like to use this rose-scented alcohol-free toner to give my face some extra moisture. I'm really quite dry these days, okay? I wait until it's completely soaked into my face, and then I massage Clinique's Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion+ into my skin. There are two types of this moisturizer - lotion and gel. The lotion formula is designed for very dry skin, dry skin, and dry combination skin, while the gel is formulated for oilier skin types. I may try the gel formula in the summer, when my face is oilier, but for now I'm on a mission to eliminate my dry patches. 

Pampering Products: 

Update: I'm back!

Monday, February 10, 2014


I've got to apologize for being completely, completely MIA these last few months. I won't bore you with the details, but it essentially comes down to the fact that it's quite hard to be a full-time, upper-division college student and juggle a demanding job that ate up a lot of my free time this past semester. Since my job is now a thing of the past, I finally have the time to do what I came to do - blog about makeup. I also gave a bit of a much-needed facelift, I'm in love with the change. I promise I'm going to be much better at posting regularly this year! 

Thank you for your continued support, it means the world to me :)


Korres Lip Butter - Quince

Thursday, July 11, 2013

I have been pretty curious about the Korres Lip Butters, but the Sephora in Tallahassee has not carried Korres up until now! Regardless - I'm definitely going to be picking up more colors. For only twelve dollars, these are an absolute steal! This is Quince, a bright rosy fuchsia pink - the other colors are, in order of pigmentation (descriptions taken from the Sephora's Korres Lip Butter page
   Guava - clear
   Jasmine - sheer neutral pink
   Mango - sheer peach
   Plum - sheer lavender berry
   Pomegranate - sheer coral 
   Wild Rose - sheer deep red

I can't speak for the other colors as of yet, but Quince is gorgeous both in the pot and on my lips. The consistency really is like butter - it's rich and smooth and smells like roses. I apply it with my finger, and add multiple layers to build up the color. It stays on like a balm and is intensely hydrating. 

I'm such a sucker for great packaging (I studied packaging design in art school - I actually made several boxes in this style), and this packaging is totally adorable. 

DiorSkin Nude Tan Paradise Duo - Pink Glow

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

I'm a little late to the party for Dior's new Diorskin Nude Tan Paradise Duo in Pink Glow. Pink Glow is a powder product that includes both a blush and a bronzer, and each half is split again in half into a lighter and a darker portion. 

Pink Glow comes housed in a gorgeous reflective compact that has an embossed quilted pattern on the front. Dior also included a mini kabuki brush that is definitely the best and my favorite brush that I've seen included with a face powder (far better than Chanel's included blush brushes and sponges, etc). It's soft and light, but picks up the perfect amount of powder to apply. Then again, I have very fair skin, so I don't need to pick up a ton of powder in order to achieve the looks I'm trying to achieve. Both the brush and the compact are packaged in navy blue velvet cases that are very similar to the black velvet cases Chanel uses. The navy pouches are stamped with "CD" (for Christian Dior). 

The powder itself is nothing short of superb. Both halves are soft as butter, smooth as silk, have great color payoff, and last all day long on my skin (on top of foundation that I powdered with Chanel's Poudre Universelle Libre loose powder in shade 20 Clair). The bronzer is matte and absolutely perfect for both contouring and warming up my NW15 skin. The blush is gorgeous and iridescent, a beautiful warm shade of peach-y pink. When mixed together, depending on the proportions: 
More blush + less bronzer = an iridescent peach blush that's similar to NARS Orgasm
More bronzer + less blush = a glowy peach-toned bronzer, could be used as a tan-toned blush.

There is also another color available, Coral Glow, and both the bronzer and blush halves are marginally darker, more warm, and more orange than the bronzer and blush halves in Pink Glow. The difference between the two isn't a night and day difference, so I don't think it's necessary to buy both, just pick the one that's more suited to your skin tone. 

Monthly Favorites: June!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

I can't believe another month has come and gone already! It really feels like June flew by... 2013 is halfway over, how crazy is that?! Here are the products I've been loving for the past month. 


Neutrogena Pore Refining Daily Cleanser
Call me crazy, but I've used this only a handful of times so far and it's already meriting a space in my monthly favorites. I don't know what kind of magic is in this, but my pores (which are normally quite large) already seem smaller! I haven't had any break-outs, dryness, or irritation, either. That's really all I can say so far about this, since it's still so new, but if it keeps working this well it'll definitely be in my favorites next month, and I'll have more to say about it then for sure. 
Aveeno Active Naturals Positively Nourishing Energizing Pomegranate Grapefruit Body Lotion
I bought this lotion on a whim at Target the other day. I'm completely in love with Aveeno's Active Naturals line, as well as their Positively Nourishing products - so when the two are combined, well, I need it in my life. This has a really great tart citrus/berry scent that's really nice, but I can see it bothering some people. Other than the different scent, this lotion falls in line really nicely with the rest of Aveeno's body lotions - soft, smooth, fast-absorbing, leaving your skin velvety and moisturized. I also saw a lavender-scented lotion in this "Energizing" style, as well, though this pomegranate+grapefruit type really does it for me. 
C.O. Bigelow Lychee Mentha Lip Shine
I've had these hydrating lip products in my makeup bag for years in one way or another. The tube markets them as a "shine," which pretty much translates to "gloss," but I've always thought of these as a balm. They're super moisturizing and feel great on the lips with the tingle of the mint added to it; I usually apply this to my lips if they're very chapped at night and wake up with pretty smooth lips. I'm so sad that C.O. Bigelow has discontinued these flavored brands, but thankfully I stocked up on the lychee, raspberry, and mango flavors!


MAC Eyeshadow: Club
If there's one thing I love, it's a duochrome eyeshadow. Club is one of my all-time favorites, a shifting greenish brown that's more than stunning on the eyes, especially smoked out and punky. I love to apply this with a wet brush and really pack it on my lid in layers to really get the most of its duochrome sheen. 
Revlon Lash Potion by Grow Luscious Volume + Length Mascara
I'm pretty blessed to have mega-length lashes, so the first few times I wore this mascara, it seemed like nothing special - but the more I wore it, the more I loved it! My eyelashes have not really seemed to "grow," but the mascara's lengthening properties have been completely fantastic with time. Perhaps the formula needed to breathe in the tube for it to really begin working its magic? I also only paid two dollars for this, so the fact that my love for this is starting to creep up on my the love I have for my Maybelline Falsies is quite something. 


I know that from the swatches, some of these lipsticks look quite similar to one another, but bear with me, they're all very different! 
Maybelline Color Sensational Vivids Lipcolor: Hot Plum
I could rave on and on about Maybelline's Vivids lipstick line, but I'll get right to it - Hot Plum is one stellar shade. Bright and, well, vivid, this magenta-violet has a creamy finish that clings to your lips all day long and won't smudge. It's a pretty good dupe for MAC's Embrace Me lipstick, which was limited edition and very matte. I definitely wore this color the most this month, and will definitely continue to do so in the months to come.
Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet Lipstick: L'Exuberante
Look at that packaging. Ugh. So gorgeous. Chanel's Rouge Allure Velvet line of lipsticks is a particular favorite matte formula of mine - matte, velvety, perfect - without being drying to wear. L'Exuberant is the first lipstick from this line that I got as a gift from my dad. It's a really fantastic fuchsia pink with red undertones. It looks a little more like a satin finish on the lips, since it doesn't appear drying as some mattes can, but it certainly doesn't have a creamy look to it; or any shimmer to be seen. For me, it's a great color to start the summer!
MAC Lipstick: Sweetie (Lustre)

I had a couple of job interviews this month (fingers crossed!) and Sweetie was the perfect choice for a work-appropriate pink for me. It's a pretty subtle pink (for me, at least) and provides a nice wash of pink color to the lips without being overbearing. It's a lustre finish, which is one of my favorite MAC lipstick formulas, being great in terms of wear time and color payoff, but this one seems to be straddling the line between being a lustre and being a frost.
Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick: Cherries in the Snow

I've watched the superb Essie from rave about Cherries in the Snow for months on end, and she recommended it as being particularly beautiful on fair-skinned girls, so, of course, being a huge fan of hers and a pale-skinned girl to boot, I had to pick it up. I've been really loving it in the few months I've had it, but I definitely wore it more than usual this month. It's a brilliant cross between the most perfect cool-toned red lipstick and the most beautiful fuchsia lipstick on the face of the earth, so naturally, it's utterly gorgeous. As Essie's said, it's definitely more aptly titled "Raspberries in the snow." 
Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick: Wild Orchid
Wild Orchid is a really pretty metallic violet with pink undertones. When I bought it I thought it would be similar to MAC's Show Orchid (PRO), but Show Orchid is decidedly very pink and Wild Orchid is purple. Definitely something to check out if Show Orchid is appealing, since they both have a great metallic finish - something that I really love.
Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick: Fuchsia Fusion

This is definitely my favorite drugstore fuchsia lipstick. I thought it would be similar to MAC's Full Fuchsia (PRO), since I love the color and how amazingly pigmented it is, but I hate how it bleeds if I don't slather my lips in a clear lip liner (I love Urban Decay's Ozone Lip Pencil for this). Fuchsia Fusion is a great alternative, but the color is a little less intense. I know it looks as though Cherries in the Snow looks quite similar to this color in my swatch photos, but Cherries is definitely much more of a darker red-based pink, whereas Fuchsia Fusion may have some red in it, but it's definitely a pink. 
From left to right: Maybelline Hot Plum, Chanel L'Exuberante, MAC Sweetie, Revlon Cherries in the Snow, Revlon Fuchsia Fusion, Revlon Wild Orchid


MAC Face and Body Foundation: N1
I still absolutely adore my Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua foundation when I'm looking for light coverage, but since the plastic bottle it comes in is completely opaque, it's hard to know when you're running low. That, and I'd been itching to try something new on the low-coverage scale, and MAC's Face and Body Foundation's reputation precedes itself - it really is a glorious foundation. My only complaint with it is that it tends to settle into my pores a little after six hours or so, but I fix that easily with a pore-centric primer (I've been loving Benefit's The POREfessional for this purpose). It's ultra long-wearing, makes my skin look and feel like velvet, goes on like a dream with any form of application... the list of positive traits for this foundation seriously deserves its own post. 
MAC Studio Finish SPF 35 Concealer: NC15
In my last favorites post, I mentioned that I'd been really loving Maybelline's Age Rewind Dark Circle Eraser in the Brightening shade to achieve that Kim Kardashian-style intense cheek triangle highlight (which/who I just can't get enough of these days). I liked that a lot, but I found that it lasted for less than three hours on me; so I went over to MAC and bought this great little highlighter. It works because I wear NW15 foundation from MAC, and this concealer is cool-toned. 
MAC Bronzing Powder: Golden
You know how everyone has that one bronzer that's completely and utterly perfect for them? Yeah - Golden is mine. It always seems matte to me, but it actually has little flecks of golden shimmer dispersed throughout it - but don't worry, it doesn't detract from the bronzer at all; in fact, it's hardly noticeable and makes it look better. It's my perfect contouring shade, and looks great in the typical contouring places and/or all over the face. 
Chanel Poudre Universelle Libre: 20 Clair
This powder by Chanel is my absolute favorite setting powder on the face of the Earth, and during May I hardly used it because I'd found my long-lost MAC Prep + Prime setting powder, and I used it until the dent I'd made in the pan was well over the size of a quarter. Since my MAC transparent powder and I have been thoroughly reunited, it was time to return to my beloved Chanel. I use the shade 20 Clair, which is a pale beige shade, but it shows up colorless on my fair skin. 
Chanel Poudre Signee de Chanel
This gorgeous compact was released with the 2013 Spring collection from Chanel, Printemps Precieux de Chanel. It's advertised as an illuminating powder, but it's subtle enough that I apply this all over my face with a soft kabuki brush for a softened all-over airbrushed glow, instead of using it as a highlighter. It's a perfect pinkish-beige powder with a soft golden sheen. The powder is as finely-milled as a powder can be, and feels like silk in the pan and on the skin.
NARS Blush: Orgasm
This cult classic of a blush really lives up to all its hype.This versatile blush is a beautiful pearlescent golden peach with pink undertones that has great staying power and can be applied as a sheer wash of color or built up for a more dramatic look. 

Dior - Creme de Rose

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

I've been wanting Dior's Crème de Rose lip balm for an eternity! It's incredibly moisturizing, feels beautifully soothing, is great applied in a thick layer or in just a thin coat, and goes straight to work on my lips, which, without any kind of balm, seem to be perpetually chapped. The day I bought Creme de Rose, my lips were more chapped than they'd been in weeks, and in less than an hour, BOOM! Perfectly smooth, velvety-soft lips. This is better than my beloved Vaseline Cocoa Butter Lip Therapy balm! Though that will still have its permanent place in my purse (it's also a thirtieth of the price), Dior's Crème de Rose will be my go-to night lip treatment for sure. The difference I saw with just one use was just astounding!

Crème de Rose has a rose scent that is very luxe and softly feminine, smelling strong in the package, but is only faintly noticeable, if at all, on the lips, and if so, fading quickly after application. The texture is fantastic, not sticky in the slightest. It also has an SPF of 10. I'm a real sucker for packaging, and the vintage-styled plastic tin is absolutely adorable. It's labelled as being a plumping balm, which I think it definitely is, but I usually look to a good shiny gloss to achieve that effect, since I'm usually wearing some color on my lips. While this balm is a pale pink, it doesn't give my lips any extra color (though I do have pretty pigmented lips). 

All in all, I love this! Dior definitely made a winner with this one.

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