Friday, March 29, 2013

Easter Weekend!

Hi everyone!
I hope you've all had a great week! :) I have some more throw-back pics for you- my mom and dad have been sending some my way. I don't know exactly how old I am here, but I know pig tails were a common hairdo for me as a kid! Looks like I'm all done up for church. And oh the memories of that inflatable rabbit (sitting beside me) that would always come out on Easter! Mom would also hide eggs filled with candy all over the house. How fun!

And this isn't exactly the Easter bunny, but it is a rabbit! It's Bugs from a trip to Six Flags St. Louis- I believe I was in second grade :) I also remembered riding the rickety old Screaming Eagle rollercoaster with my dad and being scared to death. I thought I was going to fly out of my seat. I haven't gone on a big rollercoaster since! 

Do you have any special childhood Easter memories or traditions? The last time I did a throw-back post (me putting makeup on my dad as a kid), I loved reading your first makeup memories in the comments section. That was very entertaining! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend, and be safe if you're traveling! :)

Daily Nuggets...
  • I mentioned this on Twitter & Facebook, but I shot my March Best in Beauty video today- that'll be posted tomorrow! :) 
  • Can't wait for IMATS New York next week! 
  • I ordered a lighting kit so I can make videos at different times of the day when the natural lighting isn't so good... it just came in this afternoon!
  • I'd like to give a shout-out to rxstrmom's channel on YouTube! Patti is 69 years old and I love seeing her perspective on beauty and what kinds of products work for her. She's just beautiful, and so kind-hearted as well. Patti if you're reading this, thank you for supporting my channel! :) 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Sally Hansen Lip Product Haul!

Hi everyone!
"So I walked into Walgreens..." Too many of my stories start this way! LOL! Seriously though, I was walking past the Sally Hansen section, and normally I don't look too close. But I was glancing around and thought, wow, there's a lot more here than nail polish! There were lots of different lip products. So I decided to pick up a few. The lady in the checkout said- do you wear this stuff? Is it good? And I really don't know yet. I've never used any of this, so this is purely a haul! :) But I'll definitely be testing it out in the coming days and let you know how it goes. By the way, if the lovely checkout lady happens to be reading this-- your eyelashes are awesome!

There were quite a few shades of these Colorfast Tint + Moisture Balms in the Sally Hansen section. I picked up the shades Blackberry Honey and Make Me Blush. I was really intrigued by Blackberry Honey because it just looked SO dark in the packaging. And I love a good creamy pink, so the other one was a no-brainer pick for me. 

Here are my swatches... Blackberry Honey is kind of a plummy brown and Make Me Blush is a really classic pink. Both shades are just creamy- no shimmer- and the amount of moisture seems to leave a bit of shine. I'll be sure to show you these on my lips at some point. There were quite a few other shades like nude, more pinks, and berry colors.

I have kind of an infatuation with lip plumpers. Get it, inFATuation? plumpers? Ok, bad joke :) But what REALLY got me about this "Plumping Lip Primer" was that it'll make your color last two times longer! I thought that would be a fun thing to test with some of my different lip products. This is just a transparent twist up stick. It also claims to contain "moisturizing collagen microspheres". It says it'll add volume and shape to your lips while filling in lines, and will help prevent feathering and bleeding. This might be a fun one for mom to try as well, as she is sometimes concerned with lip products traveling outside her lips. 

I also wanted to try this Vita C Lip Plumper. It's a traditional lipstick shape, and is said to have "stimulating tangerine flavor". The back of the packaging says it contains a "nutrient complex with vitamin C known to stimulate collagen production, as micro-sponges plump with moisture for fuller looking lips." While I don't have thin lips, I'm always interested to see if lip plumpers actually deliver on their promises. I'll let you know how these things work in a future blog or video! :) 

Daily Nuggets...
  • Beauty Broadcast Live went great today! If you missed it you can click here to watch the whole darn thing on my vlog channel! (It's long).  Makeup-related topics discussed include my face of the day, my NYX Hautelook haul, and my Estee Lauder Mad Men Collection makeup! (I recreate the opening experience for you). Upcoming videos and video ideas for my mom were also discussed, among other things. I also cry happy tears at the end. Goodness!
  • I am so tired right now!
  • Idol results tonight! Who's excited?
  • Beauty Broadcast viewer and blogger Marie wrote an amazingly kind blog post about me. Seriously Marie, you are so nice and finding the link you shared on the Beauty Broadcast Facebook Page totally made my day. I also really enjoyed her other posts about makeup color theory for beginners and her holy grail foundations. Thanks Marie! :) 
  • I hope everyone has a wonderful Easter weekend!! 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Teal and Gold Sparkle Nails

Hi guys!
I've been getting some questions about my nails in recent videos. You know I love my Mally gel nails, but pictures like this on Pinterest have been inspiring me to branch out into new colors and designs. I am NOT a nail art expert by any means! As if painting an intricate design with my left hand isn't hard enough... what happens when the masterpiece chips? ahh! Anyway, I stick to basic stuff. I got a great teal & gold necklace over the weekend (you'll see it in an upcoming haul!)- and it inspired me to paint my nails with the same color combo. 

First I did one coat of Milani High Speed Fast Dry polish in Quick Teal. Then I did one coat of Milani One Coat Glitter in Gold Glitz- doing sort of a half-moon shape at the base of the nail. It dried VERY quickly! Then I used my Out the Door topcoat from Sally Beauty Supply to finish it off. I LOVE that I was able to get totally full color in just one coat. And when you're trying to do something (semi) fancy that requires an extra step- I don't want to spend forever building up the base color. So woohoo! I've always had great luck with Milani's nail polishes. They cover my big 3 nail requirements: 1. They don't require a lot of coats, 2. Fast drying, 3. Not quick to chip off. Do you get a lot of nail inspiration on Pinterest? Do you attempt the tricky stuff or do you like to keep it simple? Have a great day!!

Daily Nuggets...
  • Planning to do Beauty Broadcast Live the same way we did it last week- it'll be live on my BeautyVlogcast Channel at 9am CST tomorrow (Thursday). Make sure you're subscribed, because I think it'll pop up in your subscription feed :)
  • I mentioned this on Twitter, but we finished season 3 of Downton last night. Talk about an emotional rollercoaster!
  • New video coming this afternoon! 
  • We have a little cat tunnel thingy that Cupcake likes to race through, and now she likes to nap in it too! It's adorable. I'll snap a pic next time it's happening.
  • 100% blue skies today & the snow has melted. Starting to look (but not really feel) like Spring!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

NYX One Night in Morocco... Naked Basics Alternative?

 Hey everyone!
How's your Tuesday going? I've been playing with a few new makeup items, including this palette from NYX that came in my latest Hautelook order. A couple of weeks ago this "One Night in Morocco" kit was on sale for $9, and it regularly costs $15 on the NYX Cosmetics website. Just checked again, and it's down to $12 (this isn't a brand new palette in the line).  I'm always up for some good neutral eyeshadows, and apparently if I ever decide to spend one night in Morocco, I'll be set with the perfect look (LOL). Folks, I'll look for any excuse when it comes to a new makeup purchase ;)

The palette (when folded up) is just slightly larger than the palm of my (small) hand, and has a mirror. There are 8 eyeshadows, an eyeshadow base, and a second layer drawer that pulls out to reveal four sheer lip colors. 

For lip colors, you're getting a light pink, a medium pink, a coral, and what would appear to be plum, but it comes off much like the medium pink color. They don't show up a whole lot on the lips, but they do have a nice amount of shine. 

Here I've swatched the shadows and also used the base that came with the palette. That neutral base really helps these shadows pop! I know the palette says "matte smokey look"- but not every shadow in this kit is matte. As you can see from the swatches, the grey in the upper right, and the light shades on the lower left and lower right have more of a satin, almost pearly finish. You could argue that a couple of the others have a slightly satin finish as well. But what's most important is how they actually look on the eyes, and I do believe they have an overall matte appearance. I think it's a great basic eye palette, and would also be good for those who don't want to pile a lot of frost or glitter onto aging/wrinkled skin around the eye area. Plus the deeper shades can make nice liners. I may encourage my mom to try this kit as well! I thought the blendability of the shades was wonderful, and I love that along with a bunch of cool greys, you also get a brown- that really helped me blend out the edges of my look. 

 I forgot to snap a pic of my look after it wash freshly applied, so you're seeing it now after almost 8 hours of wear (which may be even more beneficial to you- so you can see the staying power). I used the white around the inner corner, one of the pearly shades on the lid- and then layered the grey (in the upper right corner of the kit) over that and into the crease. I used a bit of black in the outer corner, blended the edges out with brown, and used one of the pearly shades as a highlight under the brow. As I mentioned, for the most part this look is matte, but the shadows didn't feel like typical dry, hard, chalky matte shadows. They blended with ease and clearly the look was able to make it through the day! (FYI: I'm not wearing  the glosses from this palette- I'm wearing the new Estee Lauder Mad Men Collection lipstick!! I'll review it for you!)

 As soon as I opened up the NYX palette for the first time yesterday, two words came to my mind: Naked Basics. Here you see the NYX palette along with Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette ($27, Naked Basics is also a mostly matte palette of neutral shadows. While of course the NYX palette isn't identical to it, I think it can give you some very similar looks, with the addition of more shades of grey (giggling as I type)... Anyway, here are some swatches. 

On the top is the Urban Decay Naked Basics palette, and the NYX palette is on the bottom (some of the skintone shades kind of disappeared into my skin- I did not use a primer with either set of swatches here). I didn't do this to show side-by-side dupes, but just to give you an indication of what each palette contains. I think the Naked Basics is a great quality palette, but the NYX One Night in Morocco kit could definitely get you a similar look. The shadows are very easy to work with, plus you get a few bonus products like a primer and lip colors for less than half the cost of Urban Decay. If you're interested in some very specific shade dupes for Naked Basics- check out this video I did a few months ago. Thanks for reading! :)

Daily Nuggets...
  • There's a new Stuff I Love video on my vlog channel!
  • I believe we're on the last episode of season 3 of Downton Abbey. We watched the cricket tournament yesterday... LOVED IT!
  • Picked up a fruit and nut mix for the bird feeder. Let's just say, I'm the most popular feeder in town right now #fatbirds
  • Garnier changed their "Surf Hair" stuff that Tyler has used since college to do his hair. He says it's not the same and is on a quest for a dupe. Welcome to my world, Bub! :)

Monday, March 25, 2013

Hautelook Heads Up: Laura Geller

Hi everyone! 
Just wanted to let you know that Laura Geller products are on sale on Hautelook today! Things tend to sell out quickly, so I wanted to hop on here and tell you about some of the things that I've tried and love. There are actually a lot of things on sale that I haven't used- but here are my recommendations. (All photos courtesy of

This kit contains one of my favorite full coverage concealers- The Real Deal. Keep in mind they are giving you a mini size in this kit, but it'll last you a long time (a little bit of that concealer goes a very long way). I'm also a big fan of LG's blushes- this one is the Blush-n-Brighten in Berry. I should also point out that unless her blushes & shadows are labeled as "sugar free"- they do have a bit of shimmer/glow to them. I still find the colors to be very pigmented though. The Light Beams gloss in Passion Fruit wouldn't be my personal highlight of this kit, but it's still great and very shiny. This all comes in a little bag with an NYC taxi cab on it too :)

I have the Italian Marble lipstick in Berry Banana (the first one shown in the lineup)- and I love it! Very soft and moisturizing (truly feels like a lip balm), and the color is gorgeous. I'm thinking about getting this set because the other two shades look really nice also. Since these are marbled, no two are exactly alike... so you may get a lighter or deeper lipstick depending on how the shades were mixed, and it may change as you keep using it. I actually think that's pretty cool! 

This is a classic Laura Geller must have product. Balance & Brighten is fantastic as a powder foundation- or you can use it over a liquid foundation to boost the coverage. It does a fantastic job of evening out the skintone, and contains swirls of various colors, including yellow- which is very corrective. I love this product (I wear Regular), and my mom loves it too! I can't vouch for the brush (I don't have it), but this price for the powder alone is awesome. 

A few more notes... I do like LG's baked eyeshadows, but don't own any of the ones offered in this sale. They can be worn wet or dry, and unless they say "sugar free"- you can assume they have a healthy amount of shimmer. I think the Eye Rimz gift set looks like an especially good deal- those shades would make great liners or smokey shadows. I noticed the After Hours Eye Set contains At Long Lash Mascara... that is one of my LEAST favorite mascaras of all time. Goopy, thick, wet, and way too much formula comes out on the brush. Hard to use. The Spackle primer is good,  but I didn't have incredible results in terms of the impact on my foundation's staying power. A few of the Air-Whipped Blush & Bronzers are for sale either alone or in kits- I have a full blog review of that product here, but in a nutshell, I'm not a big fan. It continues to have kind of a moist feel even after it's applied.

Daily Nuggets...
  • Just shot a couple of videos. Productive day so far!
  • Watched a LOT of basketball yesterday. I don't really get into it unless it's March Madness time.
  • I'm am wearing the ultimate in springy tops right now- you'll see it in an upcoming video.
  • Meanwhile- we have several inches of snow on the ground! Frankly, I don't really mind, but I know Tyler would like to be able to get out and golf at some point!

Friday, March 22, 2013

FOTD: Pop of Pink!

Hello friends!
Time for a Face of the Day post! It's Friday so I decided to go for a fun bright pink lip that coordinated with my TJ Maxx scarf, and a classic eye look that I really think brightens and frames my eyes well. This style is sort of my go-to when I'm not sure what I want to do with my eyes... it seems that a light/bright color on the lid gives the eyes more life, and a deep shade blended upwards in the outer corners give the eyes a lift (as do false lashes!) Hope you enjoy the look!

My goal for the skin was pretty simple... I wanted a bit of a glow, but still great coverage. The combination of foundation & concealer that I used did just that!

 Face products...
-Revlon PhotoReady Foundation (Medium Beige)
-MAC Pro LongWear Concealer (NW 20)
-Bare Minerals Well Rested (set under-eye concealer)
-Makeup For Ever Pro Finish Powder (128 Neutral Sand)
-NARS Laguna Bronzer (used as a contour- mini size shown)
-Revlon PhotoReady Cream Blush (Flushed)
-Wet n Wild Color Icon Highlight (Reserve Your Cabana)

Eye products...
-LORAC Behind the Scenes Eyeshadow Primer
-LORAC Pro Palette (specific shades explained below)
-Milani UltraFine Liquid Liner (Black Vinyl- upper lashline)
-Maybelline Master Drama Eyeliner (Midmight Master- waterline)
-L'oreal Voluminous Full Definition Mascara (Upper lashes)
-Maybelline Lash Discovery Mascara (not pictured- lower lashes)
-Salon Perfect Demi Wispies False Lashes (not pictured)
-ELF Studio Eyebrow Kit (not pictured- Medium)

 How I used the LORAC Pro palette...
1. Prime the eyes 
2. I applied Champagne shadow in the inner corner
3. I used Nude just under the highest part of my brow
4. Pat Lt. Bronze on the lid
5. Pat Espresso on the outer-most part of the lid
6. Blend Deep Purple in the outer corner- blending upward
7. Use Mauve in the crease and to blend out the border of the purple
8. Smudge a little bit of Black on the outer part of the lower lashline

Lip products...
-Tarte Glamazon Lipstick (Whimsy)
-Lip Fusion InFATuation gloss (La Lip Jolie)

Daily Nuggets...
  • It was great to grab breakfast with the morning show crew today! I missed them.
  • There's a bird trying to nest in my spring wreath on the front door... which ironically already has fake birds on it. Cupcake is alarmed.
  • On the topic of Spring... I think we're expecting snow this weekend- LOL.
  • Still trying to figure out a cool banner to go with the new YouTube channel design. ugh.
  • Happy Friday everyone! Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Benefit Longwear Powder Eyeshadows

Hey guys! Hope you're having a good day! Just wanted to pass along my review on these new Benefit Longwear Powder Eyeshadows. I received these from the company to review, but they retail for $20 apiece. I think the packaging on these is really cute- and they came in a cute cardboard round box that reminded me of a mini old school hat box. Unfortunately, that's pretty much the best part about these shadows, in my opinion. 

The shades I have are shown above (left to right): Pinky Swear (matte), Nude Swings (shimmer), and Thanks a Latte (Shimmer). They're swatched in the same order below...

My issue with these shadows is how sheer they are. Nude Swings is SUPER sheer, Pinky Swear doesn't pack much punch either. Thanks a Latte is definitely the best of the bunch when it comes to showing up. I like that these aren't dry and flakey, but when I think about this brand's high end counterparts (MAC, Smashbox, Urban Decay, and Too Faced, for example)- these shadows just don't stack up. I'm a fan of shadows that feel creamy and velvety and really show up. I was talking about these on Beauty Broadcast Live today, and someone said they like their eyeshadow to be sheer... and that's fine! But you can save 17 bucks and get sheer eyeshadow from NYC. Come to think of it- there are plenty of drugstore brands that have more color payoff than these. Keep in mind- I haven't tried all the colors from this line- just these three. And judging by these, it seems the darker shadows in this line might be better than the light ones. I've been wearing these with a primer in an effort to get them to show up more. That seems to help, and I can't complain about the staying power. Still it seems a little odd that it took my cheap Fergie Wet n Wild eye primer to give these $20 Benefit singles a boost! 

For this look, I'm wearing Nude Swings all over the lid, Pinky Swear under the brow, and Thanks a Latte in the outer corner/crease. It's a nice subtle look but I don't think it requires $60 worth of product to achieve. I'm curious to learn about your experiences with these Benefit eyeshadows- have you tried some really good shades from this line that you feel are worth the price? 

Daily Nuggets...
  • If you missed Beauty Broadcast Live, you can watch the whole (LONG) thing on my vlog channel! I apologize for the confusion at the start, it was my first time using this setup. 
  • Sugar Free cinnamon disks... not too shabby!
  • Still drinking water out of my flashing snowman glass
  • Picked up a few grocery items and did not stray from my list one bit. Booyah!
  • Have you been keeping up with "March Madness"? I haven't been watching much in terms of the games, but I use the NCAA March Madness Live app to check on my bracket now & then.  

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Milani Color Statement Lipstick: Plums & Berries

Hey guys! This is the final installment of my Milani Color Statement Lipstick blogs! This is the Plums & Berries family... the others were Reds & Oranges, Pinks & Corals, and Naturals & Browns. Thank you to Milani for sending me these collections to review. One consistent feature I've found in all of the groupings is that the color is extremely saturated. Whether it's a nude or a super dark color- there's nothing sheer about these. I love the variety in this particular collection. It ranges from deep pinks to a metallic purple! When you're scanning through the aisles, it can be kind of hard to figure out exactly what the different colors would look like on the lips, so hopefully these blog posts have been helpful in that way! As for how they feel, the lipsticks glide on nicely (you don't have to work to build up the color), but they're not slide-off-your-lips slick. For that reason, the staying power is really impressive. I've mentioned this in the other blog posts, but in case you haven't checked them out, the scent on this collection is the same as the others- it's not super fruity or anything, but just lightly sweet. 

Left to right: Plumrose, Raspberry Rush, Uptown Mauve, Sangria, Chilled Brandy, Black Cherry, Violet Volt. 

17 Plumrose (Cream)
I love the Cream formula of these lipsticks- it glides on so easily and leaves just a bit of shine on the lips- along with a lot of color. I'd describe this shade as deep pink. It doesn't have the purple vibe that a lot of colors in this family do, and I really like it. This is definitely the type of shade that's in my "comfort zone" and therefore one of my favorites in this collection. 

19 Raspberry Rush (Metallic)
This is one of the few lipsticks in the line that actually felt kind of dry as I put it on. It's not coming off incredibly metallic on my lips, but I assure you, there is a bit of a frosty finish on this. If you're self conscious about a lot of lines on your lips, beware of the Metallic and Shimmer formulas in these lipsticks- they seem to spotlight any lines, or dry texture on the lips. As far as the shade itself though, I think it's quite pretty and is kind of like hot pink just taken down a notch.

20 Uptown Mauve (Cream)
LOVE everything about this one. The color, the finish, the feel. I think it's just a gorgeous berry that has a beautiful depth to it. The shade comes off with a little more pink on the lips than you might expect when you see it in the tube, and I love that. Once I took the last picture- I put this color back on. I'll be reaching for this one a lot! :) Oh and because of the name, I got Billy Joel's "Uptown Girl" in my head, but now I'm replacing "girl" with "mauve" :) 

21 Sangria (Matte)
Welcome to the lone matte lipstick in this color family! Loving it! When this collection arrived at my house, this was the first one I reached for to put on. The color comes off on the lips with more red than it appears to have in the tube. It's also rather buildable, so the lighter you apply it, the more red it will have (not fire engine red, obviously)- and if you build it up more it will have more of a deep berry look.  Just because this is matte- it still doesn't feel super dry on the lips- YAY! (That's an unfortunate flaw I find in most drugstore matte lipsticks.) 

22 Chilled Brandy (Shimmer)
I think this is a super pretty color- but as I said earlier- the frosty colors will spotlight lines on your lips. I still plan to make this work because I think this is a beautiful deep red- so I'll top it with a gloss. A lot of people might actually find a red like this a little easier to wear than a super bright cherry red. I like the amount of depth and I don't care if it's Spring- I'd be willing to sport this kind of shade any time of year. 

24 Black Cherry (Cream)
Hello darkness! Yep it looks downright scary in the tube but comes off on the lips with more red. This was a tricky shade to apply straight from the tube, and I'd normally use a lip brush, but I like to be able to tell you how the product actually feels gliding on the lips. I like that they made this one a cream formula instead of matte- so It can catch the light a bit and appear to have a little more life. This is darker than what I'd wear most days, but I still may wear it occasionally. It kind of reminds me of Sangria because this shade is pretty buildable- the lighter you go, the more red will come out. This kind of shade looks really stunning on deeper skintones.

34 Violet Volt (Metallic)
Metallic purple, anyone? This is one of those that I'm not sure if I should wear it out in public or not. It has even more of a blue undertone to it when you see it on the lips in person. Not only is this a bold color, but it also has a metallic finish... so it's nowhere near "natural". What do you think? I'm not a big fan, but I'm sure someone out there would be very into this! As with all of the lipsticks... there's nothing sheer about this! As Emeril would say... BAM!

Final thoughts... I really loved getting to try on all of these lipsticks for you, and I hope you liked seeing them! My favorites in this collection were Plumrose, Uptown Mauve, and Sangria. I also wouldn't mind having a glass of Sangria, but that's another story. I think they're just gorgeous and feel so nice on the lips! Thanks for stopping by my blog!!

Daily Nuggets...
  • Trying to get caught up on tweets. I'm very behind because last week & the weekend were so busy. The daily tweet limit doesn't help me either, but if I haven't replied to your question yet, I'm getting there!
  • Tomorrow is Beauty Broadcast Live day! Guess what? I'm going to try yet ANOTHER way of doing it! I know, it's crazy. I'm about ready to just hand out my address and ask everyone to come over-- that might be easier! But my plan is to try broadcasting live at 9am CST from my Beauty Vlogcast channel. I've never done it before, so expect some hiccups. 
  • Justified was sooo good last night! 
  • I still can't find the new limited edition Wet n Wild palettes. I looked while I was out yesterday & no luck!
  • New video was posted today!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

My Very Random Big Lots Haul

Hey everyone! It seems like once every few months I make a stop in Big Lots, because you never know what you're going to find there. I was out today so I stopped in and got some really random stuff! 

Herb Grow Kit - $8
I was actually planning to plant some herbs, but didn't expect to find the stuff I'd need at Big Lots. They did have tons of outdoor/garden items though. This little pot supposedly contains everything I need to grow basil, cilantro, and parsley. It's really cute! They also had little pots like this for growing strawberries. Does anyone else grow their own herbs? Any tips? You'll probably see more about this on my vlog channel.

Ecolution 7in. Grilled Cheese Pan - $10
I was looking through the kitchen supplies and spotted this little pan! I thought it would be perfect for when I'm making breakfast or lunch for myself. One of my other pans apparently isn't non-stick, so I thought I could use another one. 

Behold the cuteness on the back of the pan! It's pink!

Remington Signature Tools Mini Series Curling Iron - $10
And another mini thing stole my heart... I've been wanting a little curling iron for travel- and I LOVE my mini blow dryer! For 10 bucks I thought this was worth a shot. I've had pretty good luck with my Remington T-Studio styling wands, so I thought this would probably be decent quality, too. It just has an on/off switch, nothing fancy. But the pink & black giraffe print is pretty fabulous!

I was also tempted to buy a bag of deformed Jelly Belly jelly beans called Belly Flops! No joke! I didn't even know those existed, but leave it to Big Lots to carry them. I didn't buy them... maybe next time! :) 

Daily Nuggets...
  • I got a few new Z-palettes & went on a de-potting spree last night with my MAC eyeshadows. Call me crazy, but I think it's really fun! I'll probably do a "what's in my z palettes" video sometime soon.
  • Speaking of palettes, I have a new video coming tomorrow involving... palettes! It'll be on my channel and the Ladies' Home Journal Gloss Daily Blog. 
  • Had fun being interviewed this morning by Mandy with House of Rose this morning! I'll let you know when it gets posted. She and her husband Jeff also have a blog about earning money online called Dollars & Roses. It's really interesting! :) 
  • I'm drinking water out of my flashing red snowman glass. Makes it much more exciting.

Monday, March 18, 2013

New Shampoo & Conditioning Products from The Balm

Hey everyone!
I hope you all had a great weekend! I thought I'd do some posts about the "hair routine" I've been using for about the past month or so. Were you aware that The Balm is making hair products? Yes, that's the same brand that I rave about for great blushes and eyeshadows :)

 The line is called En Root. These products were sent to me for review and I'm told they're available at Ulta, as well as LovelySkin, Aveyou, and Zappos websites. I also have some styling products to tell you about- but I'm saving that for another post. For now- here are my reviews on the shampoo, conditioner, and treatment mask I've been using in the shower! 

The Balm En Root Give Me Volume Shampoo & Conditioner ($15 each)- Pretty cute packaging, huh? These are sulfate & paraben free, and safe for color-treated hair. They're said to contain Vitamins A, C, and E, as well as bamboo and rice protein. Besides the volumizing formula I have, there are variations for different hair types- "Control My Curls", "Keep My Color", and "Moisturize My Hair". The scent is unlike other hair products I've tried and kind of hard to put my finger on... to me, it seems like a cross between floral and tropical. I'm getting a little bit of a coconut vibe, but it's subtle. 

As for how these have been performing- I've been getting lots of compliments on my hair in recent videos! People have been saying it's been looking healthy and shiny- and these are the products I've been using. At first, I thought this volumizing shampoo & conditioner made my hair VERY manageable while styling, but was possibly weighing my fine hair down a bit... like making it feel oily sooner than other kinds I've used. Then I thought maybe it was "operator error"- so I spent longer on the rinsing process in the shower- and I actually think it's helped! I still tend to wash my hair pretty much everyday- because I don't like to have any build-up of styling products. How much do these actually volumize my hair? I always feel like that comes down to how I style it- and I have never truly understood how a shampoo and conditioner alone can give my flat hair volume... but like I said, it does make my hair less "fly-away" and more manageable when I do style it.

I must say- I haven't had my hair cut in several months, and in the past under these circumstances, WEN was the only shampoo/conditioner type product that would keep my ends from feeling dry (I do a lot of heat styling)... but this conditioner is working just as well as WEN when it comes to keeping the hair soft all the way to the tips. I would prefer to have a drugstore pricetag on shampoos and conditioners because of the frequency with which I go through them... still, I think the price isn't outrageous and might be worth it because I like all the nice things people are saying about my hair, and how soft it feels :) 

The Balm En Root Conditioning Treatment Mask ($15)- I've been using this in place of the regular conditioner once a week- leaving it on my hair as long as possible in the shower before rinsing it off. The directions say 10 minutes- but I doubt that I usually let it stay on that long. I put it on the bottom half of my hair- not near the roots. I feel like the regular conditioner is very nourishing to my hair to begin with- but this just kicks it up a notch. It contains keratin & shea and after using it consistently the past few weeks- I think it may be working even better than my Holy Grail deep conditioner- Tresemme Liquid Gold. If you're not too sure about going for an all new shampoo & conditioner but just want something to help out your heat-damaged hair- this product might be a good place to start. 

More reviews on The Balm hair products to come! I've been using their styling stuff as well, so I'll let you know how it compares to some of my long-time drugstore favorites. Have a great week everyone!

Daily Nuggets...
  • Did my makeup in 5 minutes today for a Get Ready with Me video... oh the stress of speed makeup! Uploading it now. 
  • There is a March Madness bracket contest underway and you could win more than $150 worth of makeup! The details are here... and don't wait because I think the tournament starts tomorrow! You don't have to be a sports expert (Lord knows I'm not!)- just make your best guesses and have fun with it! The winner will be announced when the tournament is over.
  • Kalee's shower & bachelorette party over the weekend was SO fun! We had a blast in downtown Chicago, and I am STILL tired! :) Tyler & Jonathan had their own fun while the girls went out. I got a text at 2:45 a.m. Sunday of a picture of Tyler and an older man with a handlebar mustache. Yep, they had a good time :) 
  • Spent much of yesterday evening sprawled out on the couch watching more episodes of Downton Abbey. You guys weren't kidding when you said season 2 was nuts!!!

Friday, March 15, 2013

One of My First Makeup Gigs

I share a lot on my blog, but what you may not know is that I was a highly sought-after makeup artist back in the 80's. As you can see, I specialized in makeup for men (my dad in particular), and preferred to have my clients comfortable- so I'd just have them lay on the floor. You'll notice that I was a diligent worker... I'd keep going even after they feel asleep! Another key to success is using high quality products- made entirely of plastic. It's hard to mess up when there's no real product in the various containers and tubes! Also, I had my PR team at the ready- always snapping pics of me at work. There you go- those are my keys to success as a makeup artist! 

Hope you got a laugh out of this quick post! I'm on the go today, but wanted to share this pic of me & dad that my mom found this week. I'm not sure exactly how old I was here, but I definitely remember those play-makeup products! I also remember loving to look through my mom's purse in church to see what kind of makeup she was toting around :) What's your earliest makeup memory? Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

FOTD: Makeup Appropriate for Day AND Night

Hi everyone!
I was really happy with the way this particular makeup look came out, so I thought I'd share my "face of the day" :) This was from yesterday, and I had a meeting in the morning, and as I was getting ready I was actually shooting a step-by-step picture thing on winged eyeliner for a local publication (hence the classic, minimal eyeshadow). Obviously this is a look I'm willing to sport for daytime, but I think it easily works for night, too. And sometimes you just don't want to have to start over! With a little powder late in the day, a bit more blush and extra gloss- I was ready for a night on the town! 
(but I didn't actually go out on the town... I stayed home, ate leftovers, and watched Justified... but the point is - I was READY to go out on the town :)

A couple of points about this look that I liked-- the overall finish of the foundation & powder (using 2 NYX products I talked about in my latest video), and how the shadow was very simple- yet the eyes were quickly glammed up with liner and lashes. And you know I always love a good berry lip! Here's what I used! 

Face products...
-NYX Stay Matte but not Flat Liquid Foundation (Soft Beige)
-Revlon PhotoReady Concealer (Light Medium)
-Bare Minerals Well Rested 
-NYX Stay Matte but not Flat Powder (Medium Beige)
-Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Soft Duo Bronzer (03 Amber Bronze Medium)
-Physicians Formula Happy Booster Blush (Natural)
-Wet n Wild Reserve Your Cabana Highlight (forgot to photograph)

They key word for the eyes is probably "defined". The shadow is very subtle, and the liner isn't really thick... but what was used was intensely dark. The lashes do a good job of framing the eye as well. 

Eye products...
-Too Faced Shadow Insurance (forgot to photograph)
-Dior Couture Colour Eyeshadow #734 Grege (remember my video on what I got for Christmas? This tiny palette from Sephora came with DiorShow New Look mascara... not a big fan of the mascara but I am loving the eyeshadow- more explanation below).
-Milani Ultrafine Liquid Liner (Black Vinyl- winged on upper lashline)
-Maybelline Master Drama Liner (Midnight Master- lower inner rim)
-Essence I Love Extreme Crazy Volume Mascara (upper lashes)
-Maybelline Lash Discovery (lower lashes)
-ELF Studio Eyebrow Kit (Medium)
-Salon Perfect Demi Wispies

As far as the eyeshadow- the shades in this palette all appear to be satin or matte finish. I used the white around the inner corner and under the brow, the light grey in the middle all over the lid and a mix of the dark grey & dark brown (bottom of the palette) in the crease. I smudged the dark brown on the outside of my lower lashline, then blended the dark grey the rest of the way. I think it helps take away some of the starkness that black in the waterline can have, but doesn't make it overly smokey. 

 Lip products...
-NYX Jumbo Lip Pencil in Narcisse (looks so much brighter on the lips than it does in the pencil!)
-NYX Mega Shine Lip Gloss in Perfect

Daily Nuggets...
  • Even without the news job... I feel like there is a lot happening in my life at the moment... each day the to-do list gets a bit longer. I'm lucky for that, but must stop and take time to breathe. Now that I am my (only) boss and do my work at home, I have trouble knowing when to close the laptop.
  • I got crafty today... you'll see my creation in an upcoming vlog :)
  • Mysterious box on the doorstep for Tyler... what could it be?
  • There won't be any Beauty Broadcast Live tomorrow-- sorry about that! I haven't had the chance to test out any alternate methods (and when that was the case last week- only 10 could watch!) I also need to shoot some other things and finish up some videos that have been on the "request list" for quite some time. I literally have a legal pad that I add to daily! 
  • Does anyone read Ladies' Home Journal? You might notice some familiar beauty bloggers on page 8 of the April issue! :)