Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Rimmel // Match Perfection Concealer

Rimmel Match Perfection Concealer - $4.97- $5.99

Before this year it never really crossed my mind that not all concealers should be used under the eye. I have used the same cream concealer for the last four years (a trio by Kirkland Borghese) and never stopped to think whether or not it was the best concealer out there. Although my beloved trio hides redness and covers blemishes well, I decided it was time I explored other options to mask the darkness under my eyes. The Rimmel Match Perfection Concealer claims to be a 'two in one' highlighter and concealer that will adapt to your skin tone. Due to the 'highlighting' aspect of the product, I would suggest that you only use it under the eyes because it will make blemishes more noticeable instead of hidden. This concealer is available in 5 different shades and the one I have is  the second lightest shade called 'Fair Light'. I did struggle a bit trying to determine which color would suit me but this does truly seem to adapt to my skin tone. I find the concealer is a tad drying and that it does not stay on for too long if it is not set with powder. I personally lightly pat the product in with my ring finger in place of blending it in with a brush. Overall, it is a fairly decent concealer for the price and I love the brush tip applicator but I think I will try something else when I'm through with this tube. What do you think of this concealer?

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Beauty Battle // Lip Butters

L-R: Color Whispers: 'Orange Attitude' and 'Lust for Blush'; Lip Butters: 'Red Velvet' and 'Strawberry Shortcake'
I must warn you that this might be a bit of a biased and controversial 'battle' because I know that many of you have a strong love for the Revlon 'Lip Butters' but I prefer the Maybelline 'Color Whispers'. On paper they are actually quite similar but I believe that they are very different. I will try not to be too opinionated and let you decided which 'lip butter' is for you!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Stila // Convertible Color Trio in 'Cool'

Stila Convertible Color Trio - $20 at or $32 at

When Katie mentioned this on her blog last month, I started drooling. I love a great bargain, especially when it involves a multi-use product that I have been eyeing at Sephora for over a year. Available exclusively online, Stila offers two different palettes: 'Cool' [Peony, Lillium, Cherry Blossom] and 'Warm' [Gerbera, Camellia, Honeysuckle]. I decided to go for 'Cool' partly because of Katie's post and also because I heard about Peony countless times. Both palettes have exclusive shades, in this case, the limited edition shade is Cherry Blossom. I am so happy that I waited to order this because Ulta only began selling this a couple weeks ago. The convertible colors are meant for both cheeks and lips but I have only been using this as blush. I was curious to see if the quality of this cream lip/cheek combination because I have only tried drugstore cream blushes. I have to say, there is a clear difference between a higher-end cream blush and a drugstore version. The Stila Convertible Colors are not drying and blend effortlessly. I just dabble a bit on my cheeks and blend with my fingers. Peony is a very bright pink that I would reserve for the summer but Lillium is a dustier pink. Cherry Blossom is a dark coral that I would wear year round. This is definitely my favorite purchase of the summer. Applies easily, all the colors are beautiful, and the lasting power is respectable. Get them while they're still available!

Friday, July 19, 2013

NYX // Lip Liner Pencils

Ulta is currently offering free shipping with any $25 purchase so, of course, I gave in and bought a couple of bits online. My most exciting purchase will appear in a post soon, but to get the free shipping, I added two NYX lip liners to my basket. The quality of the NYX lip pencils is parallel to their price [$3.50]. They aren't spectacular but they get the job done. I would suggest applying lip balm before using them because they can be drying on their own. I have been seeing so many people rocking an orange lip so that's where 'Pumpkin' came in. I didn't want to spend a lot of money on a lipstick until I knew that orange suited me so I opted for a lip liner. 'Pumpkin' is more of an orange-red than the true orange that I had hoped it would be. It also has a metallic sheen that I'm not too keen on. Since Ulta was having a deal on NYX products, I also got 'Rose' for half the price. I plan on using this with Mac's 'Chatterbox' but in the photo above I am just wearing it on its own. What do you think about the NYX lip pencils? What color do you love?

P.S. I wanted to apologize for my lack of posts as of late. I mentioned previously that the camera I tend to use is not available to me at the moment and that has forced me to use a different camera that is lesser in quality. I have been struggling to take photos because I have to take a million more shots and a play with the lighting quite a bit more. This came at a particularly bad time because I had a sudden spur of inspiration and came up with over forty new blog post ideas. Hopefully I'll be back on track soon!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Let's Talk Fitness // 2: Motivation

The main reason why I'm not a professional athlete (minus the fact that I just don't have the talent) is that I often lack the motivation to get out and train. However, I do have a couple tips and tricks have helped me go to the gym more often and for a longer period of time.

My number one problem is that I get bored while running on the elliptical or treadmill. I have noticed that some people tend to cover up the screen of the machine with a towel to avoid seeing the time they have spent running/the amount of calories they have burnt. This is supposed to make you lose track of time and spend more time exercising. That does not work for me. Nor does listening to music. The only thing that will keep me distracted is watching YouTube videos. In particular, videos about fitness and health. Here are a couple of YouTubers that keep me going:
  1. Lauren Elizabeth: Lauren has 3-4 videos about her fitness routine and eating habits
  2. Ayydubs: Alyx talks about her weight loss story and how she stays in shape. She is a BIG fan of Zumba.
  3. ARose186: Fitness aside, Arden is hilarious and the most charming person I've ever watched. She talks about staying healthy and her fitness routine. 
Another solution for the monotony that can be working out is to mix it up! Not only will this keep you more engaged, it is actually more beneficial to your workout. If every time you go to the gym you only run or you only go on the elliptical, your body will get used to the exercise and it will not benefit you in the long run. For example, one day of the week I like to run a couple miles on the treadmill and do abs and legs and then the next time I go to the gym I will spin and focus more on lifting. This gives certain muscles time to heal before you strain them again and make them bigger and tighter. Also, a good idea is to try to take some classes like yoga, zumba, or kickboxing. During past school year I experimented with boxing and actually became an avoid yoga-goer. Since I'm very competitive, having an instructor and other people around me makes me work harder and as a result, burn more calories.

My final little tip is probably a bit more obvious than the previous ones: keep your goal in mind. When I'm exercising, different scenarios run through my head where I bump into people I haven't seen in awhile or I picture how amazing I will look at some big event wearing a dress I had not previously been able to pull off. A bit narcissistic but it helps.

Don't forget that a relaxed workout is better than nothing. Hope this made you at least the tiniest bit more motivated!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Nivea // Lip Butter in Vanilla & Macadamia Kiss

When these lip butters first came out last autumn, everyone seemed to go crazy for them. I was actually unable to find them at first because my CVS had sold out of them. When I did get my hands on one of these little tins, I was excited to see what all the fuss was about. It has been almost a year since I bought it and I have barely touched it. I will admit that the smell is sweet but the consistency and texture of the product is so ineffective and disappointing that this lip butter has been buried deep in my makeup drawer. Petrolatum, the most active ingredient in the lip butter, is supposed to be beneficial for your lips. However, when I put on this product, I feel like I'm coating my lips with sticky wax that takes ages to sink into my lips. Maybe I am just aversive to petrolatum based lip products. Another thing that puts me off about the Nivea lip butters is that they come in a tin so they're not particularly hygienic. Nobody wants to open up their lip butter and find a little hair or know that they are continuously dipping their fingers into the product and applying it near their mouths. Or maybe this doesn't bother you and it's just me. I would have overlooked the packaging if the product was miraculous. Back to the bottom of the drawer it goes!  This lip butter also comes in the flavors: Original, Caramel Cream, and Raspberry Rosé. Let me know if another flavor is better or what your opinion is on this lip butter!

Also, I want to apologize if the quality of my photos is not as exceptional as it is typically. The camera I tend to use is currently overseas on an adventure while I'm stuck at home.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

My Summer Essentials

Happy 4th of July everyone! I'm sure none of you guys know this but I'm not yet a U.S. citizen. However, my family is still celebrating with fireworks and a cookout so I do need the help of my summer essentials to look fabulous while I munch on watermelon.

Aussie Sydney Smooth Tizz No Frizz Gel: For all you curly haired gals out there, you know how difficult it is to tame your mane. Now add the heavy summer air and the situation gets ten times more problematic. My haircare is tedious all year round but during the summer I turn to Aussie's Tizz No Frizz Gel to ensure that my curls stay bouncy and shiny. I just separate my hair in half and rub a bit of the gel between my palms and apply it to my hair. That keeps the frizz and afro at bay.

China Glaze Polish in 'For Audrey': Any bright mint/baby blue nail polish is a must in my book. This is my favorite color of polish that China Glaze sells and I tend to wear it quite often during the summer.

Jergens Natural Glow Firming Daily Moisturizer: Due the fact that I'm taking summer classes, I do not have much time to enjoy the sun. To add some color to my skin, I use Jergens' Natural Glow Firming Daily Moisturizer in Medium to Tan. I use this about once a week on my arms and legs. As it goes with self-tanning products, you have to be careful. I wash my hands immediately after application but I still have had some complications [my feet were a bit orange and spotty]. That problem excluded, it does make my legs look fantastic.

Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Bronzer: I mentioned this bronzer in my May Favorites and I still haven't stopped using it. I have the mini version from Sephora's Sun Safety Kit and it is honestly the perfect bronzer for contouring. It is matte and smells like sugar. Yum!

Revlon Nearly Naked Foundation: Revlon has really been impressing me with their foundations this past year. The Nearly Naked foundation is light and dewy, ideal for warm weather. They have a wide color selection and the foundation contains SPF 20. If the foundation had a pump, I would never use anything else.

Trader Johann's Lip Balm Virtuoso: You can't forget your lips when it comes to protecting yourself from the sun! This lip balm from Trader Joe's contains SPF 15 and moisturizes your lips. In addition, it is spearmint and is 50% organic.

NYX Dewy Finish Setting Spray: In order to keep your makeup in place and to ensure you don't sweat off your patriotic, 4th of July makeup look, a setting spray is a must. I recently chose to take a break from my typical Urban Decay Setting Spray and started using the NYX Dewy Finish Setting Spray. If you want to see a comparison of the two, I wrote a post on it here.

Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer: This is another beauty I received in Sephora's latest Sun Safety Kit. It smells absolutely divine of sunscreen but better. I use this everyday before applying my makeup. It contains SPF 40 and I know I'm going to be wanting to repurchase it when I run out.

What are your summer essentials?

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

June Favorites

It month has been surprising long and difficult and I have unfortunately been unable to post as many entries as I would like to due to the class I'm taking. This being said, it has still been a wonderful month for beauty, as most months tend to be. Here are some things I have loved in the month of June.

Benefit Bella Bamba: I feel like the Benefit boxed blushes are a must for the summer. Bella Bamba adds the perfect amount of shimmer to my cheeks and makes me feel ultra girly. This pink is beautiful against tan skin. I do however prefer the old packaging to the new one.

Color Tattoo in Bad To The Bronze: I am a big fan of cream shadows and cream products overall. This month has been super busy and I have not had time to put on much makeup (in fact, I've mastered applying mascara in the car). 'Bad To The Bronze' adds a bit of pizazz to my look when I'm in a time crunch.

Lush Grease Lightning Cleanser: I wrote about this spot treatment earlier this month here. I have come to the conclusion that you have to apply a significant dollop onto each spot and it works better for the face than any other area on which you may have a spot. I will stick to using this for spots on my face but will be exploring other options for my back.

Rimmel 60 Second Nail Polish: If you saw my little Rimmel haul a few weeks ago, you would have noticed that I went a little crazy on the 60 Second nail polishes... and guess what, I went back for even more. They dry quickly, are mind-bogglingly cheap, and they come in a variety of colors. I currently have 6 of them.. opps. And they even have glitter ones for all ya'll who like that. For $1.50 at Walmart, you can't go wrong. 

The Rocket Volum' Express Mascara: I hopped on the bandwagon this month with Maybelline's 'The Rocket' mascara. I wasn't too impressed at first but it quickly became my daily mascara. It lengthens, adds volume, and darkens my lashes. It is, however, almost impossible to remove. Still worth it.

What have you been loving this month?