Current Beauty Favorites

Guess who’s back, back again.  It’s been a hot minute since I’ve posted but I’m here now with a (long) list of my current beauty favorites.  I’ve been collecting this random assortment of products for months and using them all religiously, so I promise they are well worth the money.  At least that’s what I tell my boyfriend when he says “You bought MORE stuff?!” Whoops.  Anyway, let’s get to it:

 

 

Face & Skin

Freeman’s Dead Sea Minerals Anti-Stress Mask

Image result for freeman dead sea minerals mask

God do I love me a face mask.  Freeman is an OG in the mask department and the dead sea minerals mask is my new favorite.  I loooove the turquoise blue color of the product, I love the fresh scent and I especially love how my skin feels after washing it off.  This mask dries semi-hard, not as hard as a clay mask, and comes off easily with warm water.  It leaves my skin bright, refreshed and overall feeling better.  And I think that in this political climate, we all need as much anti-stress products as humanly possible.  Pro Tip: This face mask pairs wonderfully with a Pinot Noir and any episode of The Real Housewives.

Aveeno Eczema Therapy Moisturizing Cream

Image result for aveeno eczema therapy

I don’t know about you, but my seasonal allergies this year were HORRIFIC.  My nose ran constantly and I wanted to claw my eyes out of my skull they itched so badly.  When my allergies are really on one, I get eczema flare ups on my upper and lower eyelids and they turn into a puffy, scaly, red itchy mess.  Is this turning you on?

So to keep myself from scaring small children when I walk through the streets, I picked up this Aveeno eczema cream at CVS.  It has been a life saver.  This lotion is unscented, super light weight and sinks into my pissed off eczema skin quickly.  It feels so soothing and helps relive the itching and puffiness almost immediately.  I put this all around my eyes and it has never bothered my contacts or, most importantly, made my eyelash extensions fall off.  If you also deal with the scourge that is eczema – you need this stuff.

Origins High-Potency Night-a-Mins Mineral Enriched Renewal Cream

Image result for origins night a mins

Okay, I’ll get this out of the way immediately – this shit is expensive.  And it comes in a tiny jar.  BUT – It’s fabulous.  I love a good bougie night cream and this is my current favorite.  I’ve been using it for the past 6 months or so and I don’t see myself stopping any time soon.  This cream is packed with vitamins and minerals and goes on with a velvety smooth finish.  I wake up with glowy, refreshed skin even after using a tiny amount (I try to ration it out so that I’m still able to pay my electric bill each month).

Another bonus?  It smells amazing.  To me it smells exactly like the orange Flintstones Push Up ice cream popsicle things from back in the day.  God those were amazing, I probably ate thousands of them as a kid.  But I digress.  If you’re looking for a high quality night cream and don’t mind spending a few extra bucks, grab this one.

Hair

Garnier Flat Iron Perfector Straightening Mist

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I’ve been straightening my naturally wavy hair for years but never really realized how important it is to use a heat protector.  Thankfully, I’ve seen the light and error of my ways. This Garnier mist is inexpensive, protects hair from heat, and brings smoothness and shine with added Moroccan argon oil.  It even keeps my hair straight and smooth on humid summer days and that is a goddamn miracle.  It’s super inexpensive and available everywhere so get you some.

Makeup

Tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Airbrush Foundation

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It seems like I’ve been on a never-ending quest to find the perfect foundation for years.  Unsurprisingly, I never found one that truly worked for me and I’ve finally figured out why – I was always trying liquid foundation.  As I’ve mentioned a billion times before, I have incredibly oily skin, and liquid foundation would just kind of…sit on top of my skin and eventually slide off.  How chic!  How sexy!  Not really.

Finally my brain had the brilliant thought of “Hey, maybe try some powder foundation, you clown?” Enter the Tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Airbrush Foundation.  This stuff is LEGIT. It helps suck up the oil while still providing enough coverage to even out skin tone.  I was a bit skeptical that a powder could really provide full coverage but it does (beautifully!) and it doesn’t ever look cakey or settle into fine lines and wrinkles.  It’s a bit pricey – as foundations usually are – but one of these little jars last forever.  The powder is easy to spread around and buff into the skin with the kabuki brush that comes with it (pictured above) so a little goes a long way.  I can’t recommend this foundation enough for my fellow oily skinned people!

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz

Image result for brow wiz anastasia beverly hills

Anyone who is even remotely interested in makeup has heard of the Brow Wiz.  I was a bit late to the brow game – I only started shaping and filling my brows in about 3 years ago.  I know, I’m ashamed too.  I began dipping my toe into the brow world by using powders with tiny brushes and basically hoping for the best.  While that worked out fine, the powder and brush never mimicked the look of actual brow hairs and that’s really the look I wanted.

Finally, I got my hands on the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz and my brow life was instantly changed. The Brow Wiz has a very fine-tipped point pencil that is smudge-proof, long wearing and incredibly easy to work with.  Add in the fact that the other end gives you a brush to shape and groom your brows and it is honestly the only brow product you will ever need.  My favorite shades are Soft Brown and Taupe, in case you’re dying to know.

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Blushed

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Now it’s time for a drugstore favorite! When I’m putting my face on, I tend to spend a lot of time on my base/foundation and eyes and typically lips are my last step.  So I love when I can find a go-to shade that looks good with any eyeshadow color or clothes color, and I can just slap it on and be done.  Blushed is that perfect shade – the ultimate “My lips but better” color.  The formula gives a tiny bit of sheen without being too glossy, and the it never looks dry on the lips. I know that liquid lipsticks are all the rage currently but they look a bit harsh on me so I gravitate toward a semi-glossy finish.  This color is perfect for work, school, anything.  I keep a tube in my purse and in my makeup stash at all times.

L’Oreal True Match Super-Blendable Concealer in Fair/Light

Image result for l'oreal true match concealer

Keeping it in the drugstore family with this awesome concealer.  I’ve tried my fair share of under eye concealers but this has been my favorite for the past year.  The name is accurate – this stuff is super blendable. I like to put a few dots under my eye and just use my finger to tap and blend in the product and it works perfectly every time.  It never looks cakey or heavy and stays all day when I dust a bit of translucent powder on top.  It’s not the greatest for covering dark, red-colored blemishes but it can be layered to help tone them down.  This is another product where a little goes a long way and one of these lil baby tubes will last a long time.

The Balm – Meet Matt(e) Ador Eyeshadow Palette

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Ah yes, my favorite makeup item to buy – eyeshadow palettes! The latest addition to the collection is the Meet Matt(e) Ador palette by The Balm.  I’m a sucker for dusty pink and coral shades, they look fantastic on blue eyes, and I also love the addition of dark colors in this palette to use as liners or for a smokey eye look.  The Balm always delivers high quality and these shadows are no exception – super matte and easy to blend with great color payoff.  Plus, the packaging comes with a giant mirror which is always a plus when traveling or doing your makeup on the fly.  This palette isn’t cheap but I justify that by reaching for it almost every day to put together quick looks for the office.

And that’s it for now!  What products are you loving?  Let me know 🙂

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Products I’m Loving Lately

Today I have a random assortment of makeup, hair and skin products I’ve been using and lovely lately.  There is no rhyme or reason to this mix of products – some I’ve purchased myself and some are samples from Birchbox.  There are few things I love more than beauty products AND receiving packages in the mail so Birchbox has been very up my alley and a great introduction to brands and products I might have never tried.  So, let’s get to it:

Eyes

Two Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

Photo Credit: samanthalalaa.wordpress.com, amazon.com 

The name is certainly…memorable, and it should be, because this mascara is excellent (and I have tried an embarrassing number of mascaras).  While it is great, it can be a bit tricky to work with and quickly turn clumpy.  Go slowly when applying and keep an eye on (pun, sorry) how your lashes are progressing and you’ll be just fine.  This mascara will give you long, full lashes that border on looking like falsies.  If that’s your thing, I highly recommend picking up a sample size at Ulta to see if you like it because it can be pricey. I’m always looking out for you.

Eyeko Fat Liquid Eyeliner

Photo Credit: birchbox.com

I received this liner in a Birchbox and at first glance I thought it would be hard to work with, but it is surprisingly easy to use.  Well, as easy as applying liquid eyeliner can be.  Another huge plus is the color payoff – very black, very matte and long-wearing.  I had typically used brush and/or long, fine tipped liners but Eyeko has convinced me that the marker shape is by far the easiest to use and it will be my go-to from here on out.  

Kat Von D Shade & Light Eye Contour Palette

Some day you might turn on Hoarders and see me, surrounded by mountains of eyeshadow palettes instead of garbage and cats, with my finger hovering over the “Add to Cart” button on Sephora.  What I mean is – I have no self control and bought yet another eye shadow palette. The first step is admitting it.

But in my defense, I did my research and bought the absolute best and most useful palette I could find.  Shade & Light has all matte shadows, warm and cool toned neutral colors, with fantastic pigmentation and blendability.  This palette is perfect for everyday looks, smokey eyes, mature/hooded eyes….really anyone with eyes.  

Here are a few of my favorite Shade & Light tutorials I’ve tried out and loved:

 

Lips

POP Beauty Matte Velvet Lipstix in Satin Rose

Photo Credit: popbeauty.com

Another gift from the Birchbox gods, this is a great everyday soft pink lipstick.  This color looks good with everything and I imagine every skin tone.  The formula isn’t too sticky or too glossy and it has pretty great staying power.  Satin Rose is definitely my favorite new “my lips but better” product.

Hair

Redken All Soft Conditioner

Photo Credit: amazon.com

My hair is naturally curly and very fine.  I also bleach and dye my hair monthly to be blonde which leads to the perfect storm of damage and overall terribleness.  Thankfully, there are a ton of products out there to make hair like mine more manageable.  One of my new favorites is the Redken All Soft conditioner.

Redken products are  a bit more expensive than my regular drugstore staples so to stretch it and make my money last, I mix a small amount of this conditioner with the Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Deep Conditioner.  Leaving that combination on for 5-10 minutes a couple times a week makes a huge difference in the softness of my poor abused hair.

Skin

Soap & Paper Factory Green Tea & Shea Hand Cream

Photo Credit: theoliviashop.com

This stuff smells AMAZING and the older I get, the more I seem to get into hand creams.  It’s the circle of life.

All hand creams basically do the same thing, hydrate your skin, so really the only reason this cream is so great is the heavenly smell (and the cute packaging).  

What products are you loving?  Let me know!

5 Favorite Spring Nail Colors

As I type this, the temperature is currently 20 whole degrees, it’s windy AF (thanks, Chicago) and tomorrow the high is 12. Degrees. Fahrenheit.  TWELVE.  And I’m over it.  Done with winter.  Beyond ready for spring.

While the rest of my body is covered head to toe in multiple layers so I don’t freeze to death while walking to the liquor store gym, my nails are sporting some seriously bright colors.  Because I’m ready for spring.  Now.  Have I mentioned that?

So if your nails are also very ready for springtime, I suggest picking up any of these 5 polishes:

OPI – Shorts Story

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Photo credit: OPI.com, my awesome hand

This is the perfect hot pink.  Not too bright, not too soft, just right.  The smooth consistency dries to a shiny finish and you’ll only need two coats.  Perfect.

OPI – Show Us Your Tips

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Photo credit: OPI.com, my other awesome hand

A brand new polish from the 2016 New Orleans Spring/Summer collection, try to get past the ridiculous name and bask in the glow of the periwinkle sparkles.  The consistency is a little on the thin side, so you’ll need a good 2-3 coats, but it’s worth it.

China Glaze – Aquadelic

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Photo credit: beautyjudy.com 

One of my all-time favorite polishes. Aquadelic is a bright robin’s egg blue-green that will make you very jealous of the actual robins all hanging out in the south for the winter.  Bonus: China Glaze polishes are just as good, and sometimes better than, OPI polishes and quite a bit cheaper.  Win.

 China Glaze – Peachy Keen

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Photo Credit: nailpolishcanada.com

Yet another China Glaze gem, Peachy Keen is a soft, orange creamsicle color.  This one looks great on any skin tone.  The formula is nice and opaque so two coats will do the trick.

OPI – Look At My Bow!

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Photo Credit: popsugar.com

Everyone needs a bubblegum pink in their collection. This polish is brand spanking new from the 2016 Hello Kitty collection, perfect for spring, and takes 2-3 coats to set at a lovely creamy consistency.

Stay warm and polished, my friends.

 

Perfume Post: Scents for Every Situation

I’m a firm believer that you’re never fully dressed without perfume.  Maybe it’s just because I’m one of those weird/awesome people who tie scents to certain memories, or maybe I just like spending money on smelly water in pretty bottles.  Either way – I’m a huge fan of perfume and like to switch up my scents depending on the situation, the season or how I want to feel.

I’ve amassed a sizeable collection of perfumes over the years and to me, each one sends a different message and has its own time and place to be worn.  I’m definitely not one of those people who sniff a scent and can smell the notes of citrus and amber and unicorn sunshine or whatever else perfume companies tell you to make you buy their product.  Instead, I categorize my perfumes by the situations I wear them in and the feelings the scent invokes.

So, here are four of my favorite scents and what they say to me. Let’s get to it:

Guilty – Gucci

gucci guilty

Photo credit: Sephora.com

Perfect for: Night time, going out, date night, drinking, flirting, dancing, possibly regretting your decisions

Guilty by Gucci smells like Saturday night in a bottle.  I affectionately refer to this scent as my “Vegas perfume” because I’ve worn it in Sin City many, many times.  It’s a sexy smell that’s not too overpowering or too mature (not cloying like Chanel No. 5).  The scent lasts FOREVER on clothes/skin and mixes quite well with sweat and vodka cranberries.


Light Blue – Dolce & Gabbana

light blue

Photo credit: Overstock.com

Perfect for:  Day time, beach, pretending you belong to a country club, spring/summer, work, first date

If sunshine and fluffy white clouds had a smell, it would be D&G’s Light Blue.  It’s an airy, delicate scent that honestly smells good on every human being.  Man or woman.  It’s not sickly sweet but it definitely gives you “first few days of spring” vibes.  Happiness in a bottle.

Miss Dior Cherie – Christian Dior

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Photo credit: Fragrantica.com

Perfect for: V. important work meetings, feeling like a capital “A” Adult, winter, fancy dinners, diamonds & pearls (shout out to Prince)

Miss Dior Cherie is expensive as hell and rightly so, because it smells like WEALTH, darling.  This is a heavier scent that I tend to only wear in the fall and winter, or when I want to feel all classy and sophisticated.  Bonus – smell sticks with you all day long.  Cherie feels very grown up and put together.  Wear it when you’re asking for a raise or to be bumped up to first class.

Alien – Thierry Mugler


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Photo Credit: Sephora.com

Perfect for: Feeling feminine and mysterious, day or night, being memorable, any season, Me

I feel like a gigantic tool saying this, but Alien is my ~*~ SiGnAtUrE ScEnT~*~ and I wear it almost every day.  It’s unique, moody, sultry and definitely a “love it or hate it” type of scent.  I honestly don’t know how to describe Alien’s scent because I’ve never smelled anything like it.  Every single time I wear this perfume, someone stops me to ask “Oooh, what are you wearing? It smells so good!” Alien truly is the most fitting name for this scent because it isn’t heavy, it isn’t light, it isn’t flowery and it isn’t musky.  It’s completely unique and not of this world.  Smell it and see for yourself.

And there you have it.  What other perfumes do I need to add to my collection?  Let me know!

Treat Yo Self Essentials

It’s the end of a long week and you know what that means: it’s Treat Yo Self Time.  Everyone needs a pamper day or night and being the Queen of Relaxing that I am, I thought I’d share my tips on what you need to have the best Treat Yo Self experience ever:

TYS

Treat. Yo. Self.
  1. Candle or incense

Scent is essential in setting the mood for a relaxing pampering session.  Before you do anything else, light a candle or some incense.  I’m a fan of incense because 1. I’m a huge hippie deep down inside and 2. No open flame to worry about potentially burning your apartment/house down.  Light a stick of lavender or rose incense or, if you’re a candle person, light whatever smells closest to a cupcake.

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Photo Credit: dharmarose.com
  1. Music

Music is definitely a matter of personal preference so I won’t tell you what to listen to, just put on whatever relaxes you and makes you feel luxurious as hell.  Spotify has a million great “chill out” playlists (or you can listen to my Mellow Music playlist).

  1. Bath Time

There is a law on the books somewhere that states one must take a bath (or at least a very long shower) during a Treat Yo Self session.  Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Body Scrub – Yes, it is pretty gross to think about shedding your dead skin cells but try to put that out of your mind and just focus on how smooth and soft you’ll feel post-soak.  I’m a huge fan of the Body Shop’s Shea Sugar Scrub.

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Photo Credit: amazon.com
  • Sheet Face Mask – If you’re going to scrub your dead skin off, why not wear a terrifying-looking mask at the same time? Throw on a sheet mask while you soak and your face will be hydrated, brighter and plumped up by the time you step out of the tub.

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Photo Credit: essencious.com
  • Hair Mask – We’re sticking with the mask theme and moving on to hair. Treating Yo Self is all about taking an absurdly long time to focus on you, and hair masks are meant to be worn for a good amount of time, so it’s a win-win.  My favorite is the One N’ Only Argan Oil Hydrating Mask.

hair mask

Photo Credit: ulta.com

Other essential items you’ll need:

  • Wine. Duh.
  • Robe. Fluffier the better.
  • Chocolate/ice cream/cake/chocolate ice cream cake.
  • IDGAF attitude.

Now go out there  stay inside and Treat Yo Self!

All About Brushes

You know the famous line from Mommie Dearest, “No Wire Hangers EVARRRRRR!”?  Well, that’s exactly how I feel about those terrible little sponge applicators and brushes that come with drugstore makeup.  Those “tools” are great for basically anything other than adequately applying and blending makeup.

So what is great for eyeshadow, and really all makeup, application? Brushes.  Yes, you’ll have to spend a little extra money for them, but good quality brushes will last a long time and up your makeup game by a million.

Here are my favorites:

Foundation

There are many different ways to apply foundation – fingers, sponges, brushes, etc.  My go-to move is to apply primer first with my fingers (I believe the heat of my fingers helps settle the primer into my skin better) and then apply my powder foundation with a Sigma flat top kabuki brush.

kabuki
Photo credit: sigmabeauty.com

The flat top on this brush really works the product into the skin and distributes powder evenly.  It’s also great for applying BB creams and liquid foundation.  Make sure to clean this brush regularly to keep bacteria at bay and your skin clear.

Eyes
If you only want to buy one eyeshadow brush, buy the Mac 217.  It’s the Holy Grail.  The bristles are just stiff and compact enough to let you apply AND blend shadow with the same brush.  I typically use this one most in my crease and outer corner.

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Photo credit: prityskincare.com

The key to any good eye look is blending, blending, blending.  The best part about buying good brushes is that they practically do all of the blending work for you.  Especially the Sigma E40:

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The E40 is a fat, fluffy brush that I swear has magical blending powers.  The soft bristles sweep and blend shadow together without drastically moving/wiping away any of the product.  If that makes any sense.  Long story short – it’s awesome, get one.

Real Techniques
Real Techniques deserves its own category because the brushes are just that good, and they’re inexpensive!  RT kits and individual brushes are sold at most drugstores and online.

I highly recommend the starter set:

RT
Photo credit: boots.com

The blush brush:

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Photo credit: vampyvarnish.com

And the expert face brush:

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Photo credit: ulta.com

And no one likes to do it, but cleaning your brushes is key.  I try to clean mine a minimum of once a month with a solution of warm water, vinegar and dish soap.  Once they’re all clean, lay brushes out flat on a towel to dry overnight and feel smug with pride when you use your clean, fresh brushes the next morning.

What brushes should I add to my collection?  Let me know!

Tips for Maintaining Dyed Blonde Hair

I am not, and never will be, a natural blonde. Everyone knows blondes have more fun and if you know me personally, you know that one of my main priorities in life is having fun at all times.  Thanks to science and bleach, I’ve been having my hair dyed and highlighted blonde for a good 15 years and I honestly don’t know if I’ll ever go back to my natural brunette color.  Blonde just suits me.

However, anyone who regularly colors their hair knows that the process can be expensive, time consuming and very harsh on your hair.  Thankfully, there are a few easy tips and products you can use to maintain bleached/dyed blonde hair and stretch out your money and time between trips to the salon:

  1. Stay near your natural color

This one kind of goes without saying, but, trying to go platinum blonde if you naturally have jet black hair is going to be a very long, very expensive, and probably physically painful process.  We’re talking about bleach here.  That shit does NOT play around and can sting like a thousand wasps are burrowing into your scalp.

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My natural color is a fairly light brown so I stick to a honey-colored blonde dye with a half-head of bleach (platinum) highlights thrown in every 3 or 4 months.  Every six weeks I have only the new growth (roots) touched up with the dye and that helps keep the rest of my hair from being colored/damaged more than it needs to be.  Which brings me to my next point…

  1. Condition. Deep condition.

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Bleach and dye are incredibly drying and damaging to the hair. That’s just the way it goes.  You can help slow and repair that damage with weekly deep conditioning treatments.  My absolute favorite is the Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Deep Conditioners.  The bottle says to leave it on for three minutes but I’m a “Go big or go home” kind of person so I typically apply this conditioner post-shampoo, throw a raggedy shower cap over it (sexy!) and let it sit for an hour while I rot my brain with the latest episode of Real Housewives of NYC.

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Another conditioning product I love and use religiously is the It’s a 10 Blonde Miracle Leave-In Treatment.  This leave-in smells great, protects your hair during heat styling, detangles, enhances shine and helps keep color treated blonde from turning orange and brassy.  This stuff is legit.

  1. Use a purple shampoo

Another ally in the fight against brassiness, purple shampoo helps balance the yellow tones in blonde hair to make them brighter.  John Freida makes a good purple shampoo but I’m cheap and buy the generic Clairol Shimmering Lights Shampoo online or from Sally’s.

purple
Photo credit: thethriftygirlsguide.com

As you can see, this shampoo is extremely purple so a little goes a long way.  If you use it too often or leave it on too long it can actually give your hair a purple tinge.  If that’s your thing, rock on.  If not, only use it once or twice a week.

  1. Don’t wash your hair so often

batiste
Photo credit: berenicebeauty.wordpress.com

This is a tip for really anyone but especially for us bleach blondes.  Unless you’re getting crazy sweaty, there’s no need to wash your hair daily.  Washing every day strips your scalp of its natural oils and when you’re dehydrating your hair with bleach and color, you need all the moisture you can get.  It may take your hair and scalp some time to get used to not being washed every day, but you hair will thank you once it adjusts.  Plus, color won’t fade as fast when you’re not stripping it with shampoo chemicals every day.  Get some dry shampoo (Batiste is my hands-down favorite) and learn to embrace the natural body and shine slightly dirty hair can give you.

Hope this helps all of my other faux-Marilyn Monroe’s out there!

Top 5 Eyeshadow Palettes

When it comes to makeup in general, I try to use a mix of mostly drugstore products with a few high end products. When it comes to eyeshadow palettes, I tend to drop some cash and get the good stuff.  Why?  Because a great palette is worth it.  A great palette is versatile enough for a variety of day and night looks, it’s perfect for travel and having multiple shadow colors in one product/case saves you from wasting time digging through your makeup stash looking for individual shadows.

So without further ado, here are my top 5 eyeshadow palettes:

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Naked Palette – Urban Decay

The first palette I ever purchased and the OG of the Naked line, the original Naked palette is basically perfect.  You have your standard matte blending and lid colors, shimmery highlight shades, and a plethora of darker shades.  There is no limit to the amount of work-appropriate AND night combinations you can create with these colors.  If you’re looking for a place to start with eyeshadow and don’t have this palette in your arsenal, what are you doing with your life?

Meet Matte Nude – The Balm

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This is my go-to palette for work days.  If the name didn’t tip you off already, all shadows in this palette are matte.  If you’re not in your 20s anymore or have hooded eyes (I fall into both of those categories), matte shadows are your best friend because they don’t accentuate lines or wrinkles.  The actual shadows in this palette are HUGE (I’ve had mine for over a year and have barely made a dent in them) and the color range flatters any eye color.  If you don’t want to spend your hard earned dough for the entire palette, at least get your hands on the peach shade, Matt Singh – it is the perfect crease blending color, in my self-proclaimed expert opinion.

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Naked 3 Palette – Urban Decay

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Yep, another Naked palette.  The Naked 3 is all about the rose gold color family with lots of mauves, gold, purple and pink tones.  The colors in this palette make blue and green eyes look absolutely amazing so if you’re a light-eyed person, You Need This.  I tend to use this one almost exclusively in the fall and winter months (it pairs very well with a dark, red wine-colored lip) and usually layer it over the Maybelline Color Tattoo in Pomegranate Punk to give some extra staying power.  As with all Naked palettes, the shadows blend extremely well and have fantastic color payoff.

Naked Basics 1 or Naked Basics 2 – Urban Decay

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Can you tell that Urban Decay palettes are my favorite?  The Naked Basics 1 and 2 are small, no nonsense and great for travel because they take up so little space.  If you don’t want to mess with any shimmery or bright colors and just want to put together a quick everyday look, these palettes do the job and do it well.  Basics 1 focuses on warm toned colors while 2 is all about cool tones.

basics2

Both palettes offer enough versatility to give you a neutral look for work or a smoky eye for night.  It’s all up to you.  I highly recommend picking up one of the Basics palettes if you don’t want to spend the $$ for a full Naked palette.

Vice 2 – Urban Decay

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Everyone needs at least one fun, weird palette.  I admittedly don’t use this palette nearly as often as the rest, but whenever I do, it’s always a good time.  This palette is great for experimentation and creativity with several dark colors for smokey eyes, bright 80s pinks and purples, edgy blue tones and warm bronze shimmery shades.  Nothing wrong with having an impractical, straight-up play around palette. It’s good for the soul.

Am I missing anything?  What are your favorite palettes?  Let me know!

Beauty Tips for When You’ve Been…Overserved

Well, isn’t this just the worst.  You, my friend, have been overserved.  You have a hangover.

Your mouth tastes like (and somehow has the texture of) an old rug soaked in beer.  Your head is bumpin’.  That jerk of a sun is up and you gotta be, too. You likely feel AND look terrible but you’re required to interact with other humans today and want to look less undead.  I’m no miracle worker, but here are some makeup and beauty tips to help lessen the damage:

  1. Shower
    For the love of God, shower. A good drinking session has the power to leave you waking up smelling like a rotting muskrat covered in Doritos so, wash up.  Bonus: The water will wake you up and make you feel better because it is a 100% proven fact that showers help ease the pain of hangovers (based on personal research).  Wash off any remaining makeup from the night before and get that blood pumpin’.
  1. Perfume/Cologne
    Perfume is needed because, well, see above. Now you don’t want to go overboard with this step because an overserved nose is highly susceptible to any smells which can increase the lovely nausea you’re trying to shake.  Stick with a clean, fresh, not too overpowering scent.  This is no time for anything flowery or musky.  We’re just trying to lessen the stank emanating from your body.
  2. Moisturize
    You may think this is the perfect time to just throw every makeup product you own on your face in an attempt to cover the half-dead corpse decaying within and call it a day.  You would be wrong. The first and most important thing you need to do is moisturize!Alcohol dries out the skin something fierce so slather moisturizer on your face (and body, if you can stand up that long) to plump up the skin.  The rubbing motions will get the blood flowing and also help drain the puffiness from under your eyes.

    For extra de-puff power, throw a couple spoons in the freezer for a few minutes.  Once they’re nice and cold, place the spoons over your eyes, lie down for 5 minutes and contemplate why you ever even attempt to drink tequila.

  1. Makeup
    You’re struggling to put sentences together so there’s no way you’re putting on a full face today. Thankfully, just a few products can make a big difference.Use a BB cream or tinted moisturizer as your base.  Don’t waste time with foundation or powder today, you need the hydration and smoothing benefits of a BB cream. Next, skip the eyeshadow.  Dark colors can weigh those tired eyes down even more and make you look worse, so stick to just a bit of eyeliner and lots of mascara to open up the eyes.  Finish up with a glossy or bright lip to fake a fresh-faced look.

    Pro Tip: Use a flesh-colored eyeliner on your lower waterline to cancel out the redness and make eyes look whiter, brighter and less, well, hungover.

  1. Hair
    Let’s be frank – your hair probably looks pretty horrific.  No worries!  Pull that hair up in a high ballerina-style bun.  This serves two crucial functions – you look polished and put together, plus you get a mini face lift. Win.

Now go forth and conquer this day!  (And by “conquer” I mean drag yourself out the door and begin counting down the seconds until you can reunite with your bed.)

Throwback: Best Beauty and Style Trends from the TRL Era

In the beauty blogger world, I am a bit of Ye Olde Person.  I was a teenager back in the late 90s-early 00s, aka the days before widespread internet use, which meant that a huge portion of my beauty and style influence came from TRL music videos.  I didn’t spend hours scrolling through Instagram posts and Twitter hashtags but instead would race home after school, throw my bag down and park myself in front of the (non-HD) TV to find out what was ~*cool*~ (while staring adoringly at Carson Daly).

So let’s take a walk down memory lane and revisit the beauty and style trends of the TRL era:

Britney Spears – You Drive Me Crazy
Britney was the undisputed queen of TRL and “Crazy” is when she really started hitting her stride and setting trends. A tiny part of me wanted to actually be her back in the day, and I definitely wasn’t alone in that sentiment. Britney’s aesthetic spawned several late 90s/early 00s style trends – super tanned skin with smokey eyes, crop tops showcasing the supremely cool bellybutton piercing, and the ever-present chunky hair highlights.  Ricky Bobby likes to picture his Jesus as Christmas Jesus, I always like to picture my Britney as TRL Britney.

Christina Aguilera – Come On Over (All I Want Is You)
Everyone knows it is sacrilege to mention Britney without mentioning Christina, so here she is.  She may always have been second in command to Britney but don’t think that Christina didn’t also give us some beauty and fashion trends while ruling the TRL countdown.  In this so-year-2000-it-hurts color explosion video, there are almost too many trends to count – the Bedazzled….everything, the lace up pants and shirts, overplucked and super-thin eyebrows, butterfly clips (!!) and two-toned hair.  Just click play and let the nostalgia wash over you like a warm, rhinestoned blanket.

Beyonce ft. Sean Paul – Baby Boy
Oh, you thought the current “strobing” highlighting trend was something new?  Nope.  Beyonce was rolling around on some sort of pelts (?) wearing enough highlight and body shimmer to be seen from space back when you were still learning how to read.  Baby Boy was one of the Queen’s first post-Destiny’s Child songs and a TRL staple.  Early-aughts trends to spot in this video – dangerously low-rise jeans, those weird handkerchief shirts that barely covered anything, the aforementioned highlighting and body glitter, and Sean Paul (anyone else really miss him? Just me?).

Mandy Moore – Candy
If you have ever wanted to know exactly what the year 1999 looked like, just watch this video.  It’s a bit overwhelming how many trends are packed into it, so I’ll break it down for you:

  • Discman CD player and headphones
  • Poker-straight hair parted down the middle, with bonus points for it being up in that spiky bun style we all attempted
  • Arm ribbons!
  • Inflatable furniture
  • Shit-ton of belly shirts
  • Cargo pants (ugh)
  • Candy-coated VW Bug
  • Abercrombie model-type bro skateboarding to impress the LaDieZ
  • A jukebox/ancient artifact
  • Large, choreographed dance with 15 friends (we all did that, right?)

Hope you enjoyed this TRL flashback and I’ll see you back here in 10 years so we can make fun of skinny jeans and contouring.