birchbox: august 2012

Before this posts becomes later than it already is, here is my August Birchbox. 

1. Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy La Fleur perfume
This smells amaaazing! Adding it to the perfume sampler collection. 

2. Talika Lash Conditioning Cleanser (oil free)
Claims to remove the toughest waterproof mascara. Sounds cool. Excited to try this one. 

3. Noir Black Mania Kohl Eyeliner
Can never have too many black eyeliners. But this oily eyelid girl is not a fan of pencil (kohl) liners. 

4. Blue Copper 5 Firming Elasticity Repair
Not sure how about this one. Might use as moisturizer for the neck area? 

5. Schick Hydro Silk Razor
This was a nice surprise. Five blade razor that I've heard really good things about. Came with coupons for refill and shave cream. 

This month's theme was "back to school," hints the Beauty School booklet with some fun beauty tips! If you're interested in signing up for Birchbox, click here

Posts for the rest of the week depend upon weather conditions. Hurricane Isaac is upon us in South Louisiana. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers! :)


high five for friday

It's Friday! Hooray!  
What kind of plans do you have for the weekend? 

1. Finally used my Ulta gift card from my birthday. That means I haven't shopped at Ulta in over a month. I don't know how I feel about that. Am I sick? I picked up a few Real Technique brushes I've been wanting; a new eyelash curler (desperately needed), the Maybelline Babylips in Pink Punch (lip product #68), and a new face primer. 

2. House shopping could not be going any slower. After failing to find anything in Houston last weekend, I hit up Pier 1. Saw a few things, and I just like taking pictures of the possibilities. House shopping is not for the indecisive mind. This could take years to complete. 

3. My new nail combo. I'm in love. Essie Ladylike + Urban Outfitters Afterhours. So pretty together yet so subtle even though I used glitter. Who knew Urban Outfitters had nail polish? 

4. I'm loving my new bow ring I got last weekend at Henri Bendel. So small, dainty, but fashionable. Love. 

5. Who doesn't love free food? Me and the bf hit up Rocco's for our favorite poboys after receiving some free drinks and an appetizer (fried pickles anyone?) at our previous visit for being good customers. Seriously, that place is amazing! 


maybelline color tattoos review

I bet you didn’t know I have six tattoos. Yes, SIX!
Okay, lame joke. Everyone knows I’m scared of needles. So, no, I haven’t actually inked myself (yet), but I do own some of the best drugstore eye shadows ever.

These Maybelline Color Tattoos are a cream shadow that can be worn as eye shadow or used as a primer/base. 

One of the reasons I love these shadows is because I don't have to apply a primer first. As you know, I have oily eyelids and this is the only shadow that I will wear with no primer. These will last around 8 hours on me w/ no primer. 

The color tattoos also don’t require a brush for application. I like just using my ring finger, and they blend nicely on their own without needing brushes. 

All but one of these shades are available on a regular basis. The only shade I'm mentioning that is limited edition is Barely Beige. 

Too Cool:
Too Cool is your basic shimmery bright white. I use Too Cool as a base for any light shadow to help it appear more like it’s true color. It can also be worn alone or in your inner color as a nice brightener/highlight.

Barely Beige:
Barely Beige is one of their four new shades for Fall. I haven’t used it much because, but so far I am loving it. Many people compare this to MAC's paint pot in painterly
**This shade is LIMITED EDITION** If you want your hands on it, I suggest looking for it now. 

Tough as Taupe:
Tough as Taupe I kind of regret buying and don’t think I will get much use of. It is a matte taupe and does not compliment my eyes that well. It’s a little dull for me. So, I don’t really recommend this one if you don’t like matte eye shadows.

Bad to the Bronze:
Bad to the Bronze is my most-used shade. I will toss this in my purse some days just because it’s the easiest color to apply to get an instant “full eye shadow” look in five seconds. It almost looks like multiple colors when on your eyes. I love it! This is probably their most popular shade.

Bold Gold:
Bold Gold is one of the original colors, but I bought it recently when I got Barely Beige. This is a gorgeous lighter gold color that will be great for Fall. I've worn it a couple times and it does not disappoint.

Pomegranate Punk:
This is the only one of the “colors that wasn’t neutral” that I could see myself wearing often. This is a really gorgeous shimmery plum/pomegranate color. Really, really pretty!

Other things to note:
I love the packaging. It’s in a sleek glass container-- very easy to pack if you’re traveling.

These claim to last 24 hours, but I don’t recommend wearing eye shadow for 24 hours. But, if you must, I would say use a primer for 24-hour wear.

There are four new limited edition shades at drugstores and Target right now. I found mine at Rite Aid. Have not seen them at Ulta, yet. I want to get my hands on one more-- Mossy Green. Looks like a shimmery dark olive green. Again, perfect for fall!

These retail for $6.99 and you can find them at any drugstore, Target, or Ulta. 
Click here to see their original shades that are regularly available.

Have you tried these Maybelline Color Tattoos yet? Do you own any of the new Fall shades? Tell me your favorites! 


operation: use what you got

A couple months before I started this blog, I began “Operation: Use What You Got.” The closet in my bathroom is filled with half-empty bottles of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, styling products, and much more. When you’re storage containers can’t fit any more bottles, that’s when you know you might be a hoarder have a problem. So, I started on a mission of using what I have. So genius, I know.

I’ve kept all my empty products so I can share the things I’ve used up during this “operation.” But now, I realize that at this point, I’m basically hoarding trash. It’s kind of weird not throwing away things that should be thrown away, so I had to finally sit down and do this post so I could now throw my empties away.

I have quite a few empty products so I’m dividing this into three parts: hair care, skin care, and makeup. I’m starting with hair care, so stay tuned for parts two and three!

I’ve used Nexxus Shampoo for years. I love it. But, I do venture out and switch it up from time to time. Suave came out with their Keratin Infusion line this year, and I just couldn’t resist trying. I used this up fairly quickly, and I have to say that I really liked it. It was moisturizing and didn't leave any residue on my hair. For only $4.50, it’s worth a try!

I can go through dry shampoo rather quickly. But, the problem with dry shampoos is that most are made with that white powder substance, which can give a gray-hair look on us brunette ladies. This one by Dove does not say it’s for brunette shades because it’s supposed to work on all hair types and colors. Well, it would have been nice to see if that claim holds true if I had not run out of this product in just one use. I’m not kidding. I used this ONE time. A few sprays in my hair and the next time I went to use it, there was nothing in there! I don’t know what that was about. Someone at the Dove factory forgot to fill my bottle up all the way. I can’t really say if I like or dislike it, because I only used it once, and I’ve since moved on to the Batiste Dry Shampoo.

I wrote about this leave-in conditioner in my summer hair care post. Leave-in conditioner is key for ladies with long horse hair like myself. I like to soak my ends with this leave- in conditioner after a wash. I love this one and I always re-purchase it (for around $6.00).

This is my most expensive shampoo, and it’s also my all-time favorite. I love most of the Aveda line of hair care. Each does what it says it’s going to do. And the Smooth Infusion line is no different. The shampoo alone is very moisturizing and reduces frizz. I also love the packaging of this shampoo because it’s lightweight and great for travel. I buy the 8.5oz bottle, which is $21.00. You can buy at Aveda salons or online.

Ojon is another expensive hair care brand. So, I was very excited to receive a sample of this conditioner in a past Birchbox. I used it up fairly quickly and I loved it. It contains pure Ojon oil, brazillian buriti oil, and murmur butter; all of which made my ends silky and smooth. I highly recommend trying this conditioner if you have really damaged hair. 

So that’s what I used up in the hair care world over the past month or so. I’ll post parts two and three next week.

What kind of products do you use up frequently? Do you also have half empty bottles of shampoo and conditioners in your cabinets like me?
Let me know so I don’t feel alone! :)


high five for friday

Happy Friday, everyone! Hope you've had a good week, and have an even better weekend! Linking up w/ Lauren again today, so check her out too

1. I decided to sport the top knot this week in memory of Miley Cyrus' hair seeing as how it was the haircut heard around the world. You might be thinking what I was thinking, didn't she just cut her hair? Yes, she did. But now, she's rocking the pixie cut. I'm still undecided about if she's trying too hard, OR if this really is her style. Either way, she seems happy with it, so the more power to her. What do y'all think about Miley's new do?

2. Who has the best friends in the world? This girl. My two best friends and I enjoyed some relaxation massages at Bumble Lane Spa on Wednesday. Uh-may-zing. If I could afford to get one once a week, I totally would.

3. I'm headed to Houston this weekend and I'm excited! Galleria + girls weekend + totally acting like tourists = my idea of a good time! I'm ready to hit up some stores that we don't have here, and stock up on some Fall necessities! 

4. Two of my friends started blogs this week! It's a good feeling to know you inspire people to start doing a hobby that you love doing as well. My roommate Jennifer is writing about her life, much of which is centered around her big ole puppy Fritz, short for Fritchard. My friend Erin is a book lover, and is writing about her love of books and all the things she is reading. Check them out!! 

5. It's not often that my boyfriend's friends are in town. They all live in north Louisiana and Texas. So, as a nice little surprise, a couple of his buddies came in town and we got to enjoy dinner at Sammy's and just hang out. They're so much fun and I hate not being able to see them more. Getting old has some major disadvantages!  

How did your week go? Any fun plans for the weekend? I'm working on some fun new posts for next week, so be on a look out for those! 


NOTW: Orly Rage

The polish I'm wearing this week is Orly's Rage. This is the PERFECT "rose gold" nail polish. I have a current obsession with rose gold accessories and jewelry. So when I saw this on sale at Sally's I, of course, had to pick it up. 

I have this on with a base coat and top coat. I'm on day 6 and this is just now starting to chip. I'd say that's pretty good! 

As you can see from the picture, this has a very metallic shimmery finish, but it's not glitter. Which I love, because glitter polish is a pain to remove. 

Not only do I love this color, but this polish has the best application. This goes on smooth and opaque in 2 coats. And if you keep going over your nails with more polish, it doesn't get thick at all. Most polishes start to run on the side or become uneven and almost lumpy.

Literally, the only negative about this polish is the fact that it is hard to photograph to get the correct color that I see in person. Pictures do not do this color justice. It's gorgeous! 

I'm glad I picked this up because it's going to be a great color for the Fall and Winter seasons. 

You can find Orly Rage for around $8.00 at Ulta, Sally's, or any drugstore. If you're looking for something new to try for the Fall, I recommend this Orly polish! 


high five for friday

Happy Friday, everyone! 
It's been a busy week and I have a busy weekend ahead. Here's a few highlights from this week...

1. I took this picture at Qdoba because of how much queso these people gave me on my chips. After I had already had extra cheese, the cashier lady thought I didn't have enough chips, so she added more chips and then MORE cheese. I literally had triple-cheese-queso-mexican-goodness all floating in that bowl. Not good for me, but it tasted oh so good. 

2. Trying to organize my closet space better so I bought this new shoe rack from Target.
Thinking about getting another one to put on the side of it. 

3. Got some new goodies when I went on a trip to our outlet mall. I'm loving blouses and statement necklaces, so these are a few of what I picked up that day. 

4. I've been running around town buying some decorations and food for my nephew's birthday party this Saturday. I've always liked paper lanterns, but never had a reason to buy some. So I finally had a reason to busy some. :)

5. Speaking of my cute little 2 year old, I got to see him on his birthday. I can't believe he's already two years old. Time is flying by so fast!  


under eye concealers and brighteners

There are a lot of products that I switch up often. Mainly because I haven’t found that “perfect one” to do the trick, or sometimes they all work fine and I just want to have options when I’m getting ready. But when it comes to under eye concealers and brighteners, I have found what I’ve been looking for, and I’m not really in the market to switch it up any time soon. But to be honest, I think I may be blessed by the “under eye circle gods” (or something like that) because I do not have a dark circle problem… yet. I’m sure one day I’ll eat those words, but for now, I mainly focus on brightening the eye area with concealer and brightener. In addition to concealing any dark circles or hyperpigmentation, brightening the eyes gives a more well-rested appearance.

It’s also a good idea to brighten the under eyes when you know you’ll be taking a lot of pictures. The effect of having your cheekbones contoured with bronzer and the brightened under eyes really helps define your face in a photograph.

Under eye concealer can be tricky. You want it to match your skin tone, cover dark circles, brighten, and have a thin consistency so it’s not gathering in any fine lines a few hours later. These are three products that I feel do the best job of meeting all of those criteria.

This is my absolute, “holy grail” under eye brightener. I use the shade Ivory, which I believe is the lightest shade. This stuff is amazing. The texture is very smooth with a gel-like consistency. It’s so easy to blend. I apply this after my foundation. I make an upside down triangle (between the eye, cheekbone and nose) and just blend really well. This costs around $7, and I think it works better than any high-end brand. Highly recommend this one.

Before the Highlighting Concealer came into my life, there was this Maybelline Dark Circle Eraser. (Maybelline on a roll!) If you’re not interested in brightening your eyes, and just want to cover dark circles, this is your product. It is a more yellow-toned concealer, so that could be a plus or minus, depending on your skin tone. But, it does come in six shades, so it’s worth checking out to see if any will work for you. The sponge applicator aspect may scare the germaphobes out there, at least it did for me, but this one is “anti-microbial” so it kills all bacteria. This concealer also contains goji berry. I’m not exactly sure of the benefits of goji berry, but it sounds nice. :)

There are some concealers that are just too heavy to use under the eye, such as the MakeupForever concealer. Great for imperfections on the face, but not the eyes. This Tarte concealer is really great if you have serious dark circles. It’s a thin enough consistency for easy blending and still provides really good coverage. It's a little more expensive, but if it works for you, it might be worth the investment. 

Fun fact of the day: Miley Cyrus uses this Tarte concealer! The proof is in this pic from her Twitter account. Not that you need Miley's approval to use, but I enjoy seeing celebs use products that they aren't paid to endorse. 

ELF High Definition Powder

If you really want to get fancy with it to help the concealer last all day/night, you can set it with powder. I like using the ELF High Definition Powder. This is $6 at Target and you will never run out. It’s massive and you only need to use a small amount at a time.

The Brushes

If I haven’t mentioned it before, let it be known that Sigma brushes are the best… and they happen to be my favorite. I have the Synthetic Precision (Sigmax) collection of brushes. The bristles are made of synthetic hair, which do not soak up all of the product like many other brushes can do, causing you to waste it. These two brushes are part of a set of 4 that I have. They blend concealers SO well, it’s like using a fingertip but more sanitary (assuming you have clean brushes!).

Tip: Don’t forget that the skin around your eyes is the most sensitive. Never pull and tug when blending. Just pat lightly with your ring finger or brush. Tugging the skin too much can cause wrinkles. No bueno! So yes, remember that when applying any creams, foundation, or moisturizer.

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