Tag Archives: reviews

FOTD with coastal scents, tarte & beautyblender (+ reviews)

19 Mar

I received my mini Sephora order the other day and had to share two of the products..

Sephora haul

The beautyblender sponge ($25 for 2pack)beautyblender review + FOTD

Here is the beautyblender right out of the package (the indent went away) Looks like a normal, basic sponge, right? Why would anyone pay $20 for a sponge? well, I understand why now.

You can use it dry or wet, but its super easy to wet it, run it under water for a second and squeeze it, it’s like magic. It kind of inflates (but isn’t even noticeably wet) You place your liquid foundation spotted around on your face, then just dab/pounce the large end of the beauty blender all around your face. When you wet it, it doesn’t soak up and waste much of your foundation, as most sponges would do.

It applies foundation flawlessly, I understand what the craze with this product is about now.  Additionally, you use the pointy end to bounce in concealer. It shapes perfectly around your eyes/nose/t-zone area. Great product, and I would totally recommend it. I was also skeptical about paying $20 for a sponge, but this is a staple in my makeup, and has amazingly put my tarte airbrush finish foundation brush to the side for awhile.

The other stand-out product I received was the:

Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Brow Mousse ($28)

Amazonian clay waterproof brow mousse -

I have sparse brows, that just won’t grow, so I’ve tried many products to help fill and shape them. So many eyebrow pencils/fillers are just the wrong color, don’t last, or just don’t look natural, but I think I’ve found a great thing in this product.

I order Taupe (a natural blonde color) and it blends nicely, I enjoy the mousse formula, it lasts and helps shape my brows. The brush is really handy because it both combs and has the brush end.

In the photos below I’ve used both the beauty blender & Tarte emphasEYESbeautyblender review & purple eye FOTDAdditional Products:

  • Coastal Scents 88 Palette
  • Nars Sheet Glow Foundation in Santa Fe
  • Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Dark Circle Eraser
  • Tarte smooth operator amazonian clay finishing powder
  • Maybelline the Falsies mascara
  • Revlon matte ‘pink pout’ and Revlon super lustrous lipgloss in Pink Pop
  • mark. glow xpert face shimmer
  • Loreal carbon black Lineur Intense liquid eyeliner
  • Revlon Luxurious Color Smoky Crayon
  • Estee Lauder Broze Goddess Sea Star Bronzing Blush – Blush soleil

Coastal Scents FOTD

(in the photo above, the flash kind of washed out my face, it’s not the makeup’s fault)

Repping my Detroit Tigers + bad picture taking + bad lighting =

tarte EmphasEYES review + FOTD

I’m adding these pictures just because I used the beautyblender & tarte amazonian clay waterproof brow mousse, so you can get a better idea of the payoff…coastal scents 88 color palette FOTDCoastal Scents st pattys FOTDCoastal Scents green FOTD

Sidenote: I don’t do any retouching to these pictures, considering I’m trying to showcase the makeup and how the product works and looks, so there will be imperfections and whatnot.

Have you tried the beautyblender or tarte brow mousse? I recommend them!


The Flake: Buxom Amplified Lash Mascara review

18 Mar

Buxom Amplified Lash Mascara by Bare Escentuals…

Buxom Amplified Lash Mascara

Initially I enjoyed this mascara. It added nice volume, length, all things you would enjoy in a mascara. It has a dial, when fully extended the brush gives you extra volume, twist the dial to the wand’s compact position for length, separation, and definition. 

None of that matters, though, because the mascara flakes. After a few hours, I’m left with tiny black flakes beneath my eyes, which is not flattering. I gave it a few changes, but always with the same result.

I see a lot of positive reviews and people raving about this mascara, so apparently the flaking doesn’t happen to everyone, or they just deal with it.

I wouldn’t personally recommend this mascara, nor will I purchase it again. I’ve heard the original formula is better, but I can’t say for sure.

Makeup Organization | Storage & FOTD

14 Mar

I was organizing my room, and decided I have too much makeup that I very rarely use. I find myself reaching for the same things most of the time. So I got ready yesterday using products I haven’t touched in awhile, going out of my comfort zone.

 (in depth makeup storage photos after FOTD)makeup storage and organization

  Here is the “abandoned product” result…Makeup FOTD

  • Benefit Hello Flawless Foundation in Champagne – this didn’t have as amazing of coverage that I would have liked, but this could have also been because it was only a test bottle.
  • Topshop Turquoise Kohl Eyeliner
  • mark. glow xpert face shimmer – my pictures didn’t do it much justice, but this is a really pretty face highlight, i’m glad I rediscovered it in my drawer.
  • Loreal eyeshadow quad in forrest green
  • Maybelline eye studio gel liner
  • Maybelline XXL Pro mascara

loreal eyeshadow quad forrestmark. glow xpert face shimmer FOTDmaybelline eye studio FOTD

  teal kohl eyeliner from Topshop

Maybelline FOTD

FOTD makeup and organization

 I tend to be in a hurry when I take pictures after applying makeup, so you’ll probably notice that my lips still have foundation or something on them still that I forget to wipe off.Winged Eyeliner FOTD

I didn’t have much of a plan when putting this look together, so I didn’t put blush or finishing touches on it, but it was good to try out different products that are just sitting around. I need to force myself to do that occassionaly. 

So I figured I would share my makeup collection, even though it’s slightly dirty..

Makeup Storage and Organization

Makeup Storage and OrganizationMakeup Storage and Organization

 My messy slew of foundation, I acquired most of these on the search for the best liquid foundation, there’s been some great contenders but the search continues…
I throw all of my perfume and small samples in the back, which I always forget to try out and throw away.

Makeup Storage and Organization

 My new, broken Maybelline Age Rewind eye brightener 😦
I reused a few patterned boxes (you can just use thick paper) to TRY and make this bulky drawer attractive. I’m planning on spray painting it a different color, until I get my hands on the Muji drawers.

Makeup Storage and Organization

 My eyeshadow palettes placed in paper filers (is that what they are called?)

Eyeshadow Palette StorageMakeup Storage and Organization

The store of products down at the bottom which haven’t been opened, I need to stop buying stuff. 

Makeup and Beauty Product Storage and Organization

Here is the messy stuff in my big drawers for easy access…

 Makeup Storage and Organization

 The drawers of random things I just don’t really use/haven’t been opened and don’t know what to do with.

Makeup Storage and OrganizationMakeup Storage and Organization

Makeup Storage and Organization

 Who else stocks up on things they don’t need during CVS clearance?

Makeup Storage and OrganizationMakeup Organization and Storage

I’m working with a really small area to store my products, can’t wait until it can all be nicely spread out.

Most used products this month {February}

10 Mar

So I’m a few days late, but I decided I’m going to list a few products I found myself reaching for a lot in February.

Clinique Moisture Surge – Extended Thirst Releif ($37)

Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief review

This is a perfect moisturizer for my normal skin. It’s a gel formula that isn’t thick, but super moisturizing. I use it in the morning and it literally just soaks into my skin so quickly and easily and I can tell my skin is just sucking it up.

“Light, comfortable cream/gel plumps skin with hydration for a full 24 hours. Fine lines, flakiness and tightness are washed away. In their place—a sense of supple, firm, vibrant well-being, even through shifts in humidity. One ‘drink’ and skin looks and feels happier, healthier. Oil-free.”

Pond’s dry skin cream

ponds dry skin cream review

While we are talking about moisturizers, I also really enjoy this Ponds dry skin cream. It’s completely different than the Clinque above, but has its own qualities. It leaves my face a slight bit greasy, but I’ve learned that goes away shortly and almost leaves a glow to your face. This is incredibly moisturizing, doesn’t clog pores, and no wonder it’s been around for so long.

Albolene Cleansing Concentrate Moisturizing Skin Cleanser ($10)Albolene Cleansing Moisturizer review

I was at my boyfriends parents house and needed a makeup remover, so I borrowed his mom’s, Albolene moisturizing cleanser. No offense to parents, but I was just expecting something mediocre, especially in this old school packaging. Well, this stuff is pretty amazing. You can literally scoop some out on your fingers or a cotton ball and rub off your makeup, while at the same time it’s moisturizing your skin. It doesn’t burn or irritate my eyes (most things do) and really gets the product off. I was thoroughly surprised by this product and will definitely be purchasing it.

“Albolene Moisturizing Cleanser liquifies on contact with your skin to gently and thoroughly dissolve makeup, dirt, and even mascara. Smooth on Albolene Moisturizing Cleanser, tissue off and see how much cleaner and softer your skin can be. Leaves no soap-and-water dryness.”

Omega 8004 Masticating Juicer
8004 Nutrition Center Masticating Juicer

I’m obviously on a juicing kick, so this had to be mentioned. I got it in February and have given it a lot of use already, I’m very satisfied with it and haven’t even tried making anything besides juice with it yet (almond milk…)

Mason Jars

mason jar juicing

It would be wrong of me not to include mason jars. I’m in love with them, I’d like to use them for everything, but for now I will settle for drinking my juice out of them.

MAC paintery paint pot ($18.50)

 Paint Pot

“A highly pigmented eye colour that goes on creamy but dries to an intense, vibrant finish. Long-wearing, colourfast. Creates seamless coverage without weight or caking. Blends smoothly over the lids. Cream-based, can be mixed with M·A·C shadows and liners.”

This is my favorite eyelid tone corrector, you’ll notice in my makeup tutorials that I tend to start with this paint pot (which blends in effortlessly) and then just apply a crease color, it makes everything look smooth and pop. You can use it for a full makeup look or apply alone with some mascara for a simple look.

Incase compact backpack for 15″ laptop ($80.00)
View / Purchase here

detail shot

Incase Nylon Sling PackIncase Nylon Sling Pack

With my new design job starting this past month, I’ve had to tote my laptop everywhere, and this backpack comes in handy. There is a faux-fur slot specifically for the protection of your laptop. Then there are a ton of other zippers and holders for everything else you would need to carry around, including the cords. It has a padded back panel and shoulder strap, can be worn across your chest, which is really convenient. Bonus: awesome colors available

Kohl’s studded candies boots (no longer available)
Candies Studded Boots from Kohls

I love these boots, of all my boots, I seem to always grab these. They are a perfect mix between casual and fancy. They are originally $100, but I scored them for about $25 on black friday.

Old Navy Activewear
Women's Active Micro Performance Fleece JacketsWomen's Active Micro Performance Fleece JacketsWomen's Fold-Over Yoga PantsWomen's Active Color-Block Compression Capris (20

ugh, I just went to the Old Navy website to show a few pictures, and of course I want to go on a full on shopping spree. The stuff at Old Navy in general fits me really well, at 6-foot, it is not easy to find clothes. Old Navy carries so much online (unfortunately not talls in stores) and the Active line is my favorite.

Under Armour – Women’s Armour Bra DD Cup-  ($58.00)
Purchase / View here

This bra is made in your actual cup size, it has bonded seams which eliminates rubbing around the arm area. I’ve purchased a lot of VS sports bras, Old Navy, etc, but being DD makes it a little harder to just throw on any sports bra. It hurts me a little to pay $60 for a sports bra, but since getting this one, I hate having to use any of the others. I am still on a mission to explore more heavy duty sports bras for boxing/boot camp classes. Overall, this is a really nice, comfortable, supportive bra.

Milani luminoso baked blush
Milani Baked Blush

It leaves a healthy, radient flush tone to your skin. I can wear this really easily and it’s just an overall pretty color. I’ll definitely try more of these baked blushes, they’re an inexpensive price for good quality.

Aveeno daily moisturizing lotion ($8.00)
Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion

Well, it’s obviously winter. As much as I like scenty lotions, this stuff is an original and just feels like it’s quenching better than scent based body lotions. Made with natural oatmeal  blended with rich emollients to moisturize skin for a full 24 hours. Perfect for those times when your skin just needs some extra attention.

Herbal Essences Set Me Up Heat Protection Spray ($4)

Herbal Essences Set Me Up Heat Protection Spray

This has been the heat protectant I’ve been reaching for most this month, it seems to do the job (you can’t exactly tell with products like) but I’m happy with the one.

What heat protectant spray do you use? I’m always looking for a better alternative.

Maybelline Falsies Mascara

Maybelline Volum' Express The Falsies Spoon Brush Washable Mascara, Blackest Black 280

I really like this Mascara, but I think I’m at my last few uses right now and I’m dreading throwing it out, even though I have about 12 other mascaras that need to be used, I’d rather run out and buy another one of these. I think there are a few different Falsies variations I’m going to look into, as well.

Dove Nourishing Oil Care Nutritive Therapy Conditioner ($4.50)

Dove Nourishing Oil Care Nutritive Therapy Conditioner, 8 oz

I asked my stylist what the best drugstore shampoo/conditioner brand was, without sulfates, and she recommended Dove. I’ve been using mostly Dove products when I don’t feel like purchasing high end items, especially if they work just as good. I like this conditioner, it is two toned, one golden ribbon of nutritious oils.

“Dove Nourishing Oil Care Nutritive Therapy Conditioner dramatically transforms and smoothes even extra dry, rough and frizzy hair. This is the next generation of conditioner with a golden ribbon of treatment inside. The gold stripe is balanced with weightless nutri-oils that deeply nourish and replenish essential nutrients without a greasy feel. The white stripe contains conditioner that seals cuticles to lock in nutrients and smooth frizz. Dove Nourishing Oil Care Nutritive Therapy Conditioner offers the instant deep nourishing power of a treatment in the time of a conditioner for amazing smoothness, softness and shine.”

BBC (TV Series) Sherlock Sherlock TV Series Review

Such good characters, and captivating storyline. I watched this series about a year ago, but I’m having the boyfriend watch them now, and they are filming the third season currently, can’t wait. If you’re looking for a great show, check this out.

Coastal Scents 88 Warm Palette ($18)

Warm Palette

Besides the Naked palette, this would be my most recommended palette to people. 88 eyeshadows for 18 dollars, you do the math. You get every neutral/warm color you could ever need, and they all have great pigmentation. I love the whites for a highlight/inner eye color and the deeper colors for crease, or you can create a smokey eye or anything you could really dream of. I’ve had this palette for a few years not (along with some fo their others) and I haven’t even made a dent in them, GREAT BUY!

What were your favorite February Products?

Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Tea

13 Feb

 I have trouble sleeping, and I’m usually on a pretty bad sleep schedule, like going to bed a 6, sometimes 8am. Admittedly, the technology can’t help, I can spend hours and hours looking up reviews or delicious recipes, and finding myself wanting to cook at 5 in the morning. Have you ever had to force yourself to bed because it’s too late and you shouldn’t eat, but your starving? I’m sure we’ve all been there. 

Anyway, I’ve discovered Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime line of teas. And generally nothing helps calm me down, but this stuff sincerely works. I’m not positive if it’s a mental thing or not, but I’m not questioning it. These teas are gluten free, naturally caffeine free, and include only natural ingredients like all natural herbs and flavors, and no artificial colors or preservatives. 

Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Extra Wellness Tea Review

The first one I got was the Sleepytime Extra Wellness Tea which:

  • promotes relaxation
  • with calming valerian
  • simple ingredients: spearmint, west indian lemongrass, hawthorn and orange blossoms

According to the Celestial Seasoning website, “Nothing promotes physical and mental well being like a restful evening. So if you’re wondering how to sleep better or just looking for something to help you unwind, try a cup of Sleepytime Extra®. This relaxing and delicious herbal tea starts with the time-honored blend of chamomile, spearmint and other soothing herbs found in our beloved Sleepytime herbal tea. We then add valerian, trusted as a natural sleep aid since the days of the Greeks and Romans because of its mild sedative properties. The result is a tea with the trusted calming effect and great taste of Sleepytime, plus just a little “extra” to help you rest.

I like this one best, it has a simple taste and really does relax me at the end of the day, especially over a good book.

Sleepytime Herbal Tea

  • chamomile, spearmint, lemongrass, tilia flowers, blackberry leaves, orange blossoms, hawthorn and rosebuds

Also from the Celestial Seasoning website, “Sleepytime’s comforting aroma and perfectly balanced flavor are achieved by blending soothing herbal ingredients from around the world – including floral Egyptian chamomile, cool spearmint from the Pacific Northwest, and lively Guatemalan lemongrass. This global synergy is only fitting, since all over the world, generations of tea lovers have wound down their day with Sleepytime.”

Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Extra Wellness Tea Review

Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Extra Wellness Tea Review

I love watching the tea bag sink into the hot water, releasing all of the vibrant colors. 
I’m really lazy when it comes to preparing tea, and I’ve never actually made it the “right” way, I just throw a mug of water in the microwave for 2 minutes (making it a perfect temp to drink immediately, I hate having to wait to drink it or suffer the consequences of a burnt tongue) then throw in the tea bag.

Celestial Seasonings Herbal Tea Review

 I like this little piece of interesting information.. 
“like catnip, valerian makes cats frisky – exactly the opposite of its effect on humans”

Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Extra Wellness Tea Review

And I just discovered they make a decaf lemon jasmine green tea sleepytime, sign me up!

Do you have a favorite sleepytime tea, or tea in general? 

Well, I’m enjoying this tea now, so I should be getting very, very sleeeeeeepy…….

Protein Pancakes, Smoothie, Granola recipes, tea & B&BW product reviews

29 Jan

Hi! So I finished the Detroit Auto Show yesterday, and now I’m back to blogging life, here’s an update of the last week and a half via instagrams. Bath and Body Works Aromatherapy eucalyptus mint, lavender vanilla, C.O. Bigelow mentha review

I’ve come to the conclusion that these are the best lotion products at Bath & Body Works.

  • B&BW aromatherapy sleep – lavender vanilla body lotion (this scent is soothing and calming, perfect for relaxing at night with a cup of tea)
  • C.O. Bigelow Mentha body vitamin body lotion (this stuff is awesome, it has that cooling tingling feeling for awhile after you apply it, and the scent is just a huge pick-me-up)
  • B&BW aromatherapy stress relief – eucalyptus spearmint smoothing body scrub (I’ve loved this scent for quite awhile now, it’s that refreshing aromatherapy scent that really does help relax and clear your mind)

strawberry muesli spinach smoothie

I tried to eat mostly healthy while at work and not spend a ton of money on food court foods (besides that delicious hot pretzel and cheese)
One of my 6am smoothies, and a ton of snow on the ground, a strawberry muesli spinach smoothie.
I dont measure much but this one contains:

  • frozen strawberries
  • almond milk
  • two handfuls of spinach
  • greek yogurt
  • flaxseed & wheat germ
  • muesli
  • various frozen cherries and mangos

 North American International Auto Show

Tazo Refresh Tea review

The booth next to us had hot water and a spread of different teas, I discovered and fell in love with this Tazo Refresh Herbal Infusion tea.
As you can see it’s a bracing blend of mint with a pinch of tarragon, it’s seriously like sipping on the most refreshing gum, or something. You literally just inhale the soothing, cooling flavor and scent. It’s hard to describe, you just need to try it. I actually prefer it when it cools down, even more refreshing.

Edible Arrangements review

Brad surprised me with an Edible Arrangements delivery, these are on the pricey side, but they really are a quality product. The strawberries are so fresh and the chocolate is thick and delicious. This also contained chocolate covered apples and a mix of white chocolate covered bananas. These lasted all but 24 hours.

homemade granola recipe

I made homemade granola

  • 6 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1c sliced almonds
  • 1c wheat germ
  • 1/2c flaxseed
  • 1/2c brown sugar
  • 1/2c sunflower seeds (or any nut variety)
  • 1/2c brown sugar
  • 1tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2c shredded coconut flakes
  • 1/2c raisins

(all above ingredients go in a large bowl)

  • heat 1/2c canola oil and 2/3c honey or agave nectar on stove until it becomes liquid, add 1Tbsp of vanilla extract
  • pour mixture over dry ingredients. Spread on a large baking sheet, cook for 10-15 minutes at 325, mix around they cook another 5-8 mins.

It turned out really good, but made WAY more than I expected. This won’t go bad too quickly, so that’s not a bad thing. I would have definitely added some dried fruit if I’d had any on hand. If you have a really good crunchy granola recipe, do share!

blueberry oatmeal protein pancakes recipe

  • 1 banana
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/4 c milk
  • 1 c oats
  • 2 scoops of protein powder (I only have chocolate flavored, but vanilla would be best)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbs wheat germ
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbs canola oil (for the pan)
  • 1/2 c frozen or fresh blueberries

mash banana, vanilla, and egg white in a bowl.
stir in oats, protein powder, baking powder, wheat germ, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
Then I heated the oil, poured approx. 1/4c of mixture and flattened out to form pancakes.
Add frozen/fresh blueberries onto each, let cook for a bit then flip (mine cooked way faster than I expected, to be ready)

These were super filling!

Avon Solutions Reviews: Nurtura Replenishing Cream & Banishing Cream Skin Discoloration Improver

8 Jan

FIrst off: I am not an Avon Representative or affiliated with Avon in any way, these opinions are my own.

Avon Nurtura Replenishing Cream
Created for dry skin, the replenishing cream is the answer to skin’s SOS. 1.7 fl. oz.
Price: $8.50

Avon Nurtura Replenishing Cream Review

This product is creamy and rich, the bottle claims, “This rich cream is formulated to replenish undernourished skin while you sleep so you’ll wake to skin that feels softer, smoother, silkier.”

I find myself using this cream only at night, it is extremely thick and has an awkward scent to it. But It absolutely lives up to the fact that it nourishes dry skin. As I don’t use this moisturizer every morning and evening, as directed, I slap it on when I feel like I need an extra pick me up.

Recommend: If you have dry skin, and can get past the not-so-amazing scent, this product would be great for you. Many people have lived by this product for 25+ years. It is extremely moisturizing and keeps for hours.

Avon Banishing Cream Skin Discoloration Improver
Featuring Avon’s own skin brightener as well as a botanical brightening blend and Vitamin E. It is a nourishing nighttime cream that gradually evens skin tone and helps to reduce the appearance of unwanted dark spots and discolorations. 2.5 fl. oz.
Price: $8.50

Avon Banishing Cream Skin Discoloration Improver Review

The bottle claims: “This nourishing cream helps even skin tone by gradually brightening skin to reduce the appearance of unwanted dark spots and discolorations. Moisturizers help keep skin soft and smooth.”

I have a slew of facial moisturizers (I just can’t pass up a deal) and I’ve had this one for quite a while. I recently started using it and find it to be a good moisturizer. I prefer it over the Nurtura Replenishing Cream for daily use, it’s lighter and doesn’t have much of a smell (which I like). I’ve only been using it a short amount of time but I can tell that it improves skin discoloration. I have  pretty normal skin with various red spots, that I’ve noticed to be slowly fading. This lotion can also be used various places on your body where you may have skin discoloration.

Recommend: Yes, I would recommend this product, especially for the price, you get a good amount of product that goes a long way, it’s a nice everyday face lotion.

Avon offers a lot of good products/moisturizers, there are just so many to choose from.

Have you tried and/or prefer any Avon moisturizers?