Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Beautifully Bohemian Ipsy Bag

April's glam bag from ipsy is called Beautifully Bohemian, and for good reason. This bag came equipped with a product to fit every need for this spring, and it's easily one of the best bags I've every received from ipsy in my two-year subscription. 
First in this beachy bag is theBalm Cosmetics' NUDE Dude Eyeshadow single in the shade Fit. This eyeshadow came in a beautiful, coppery shade that shimmers on application. It's easy to layer on top of itself to create more intense looks, and I had a ball creating different looks with this shadow.
The second product this month is a Mini Lip and Cheek Tint by Mullein and Sparrow. The color looks extremely dark in the container, but on application, it settles into a sheer, beautiful shade that gives my lips a dewy finish that is perfect for any look. Definitely a high point in this bag!
Next is an Ultra Light Face Lotion by LATHER. This turned out to be a really great product, mainly because moisturizers tend to make my face really oily. It gave me a healthy glow that lasted all day, and the moisturization level was ideal. The only flaw that I noticed was that it doesn't contain any level of SPF, which I really prefer to have in something I'm using on my face every day.
The next product was another top item in this bag. This is an eye primer by Mica Beauty, and I can't tell you how much I love it. I use this on my upper and lower lids since I generally put some shadow on both, and it's instantly become a go-to base for my eye makeup. It manages to keep that stubborn pencil liner from smearing all day, and my eyeshadow stays looking flawless for hours. Putting it on my lower lid actually doubles as a concealer, and layering it over my everyday concealer gives me perfect dark circle coverage.
I decided to save the best for last with this bag just because it was so perfect. This is a blush by Hikari Cosmetics in the shade Tango, and I am absolutely head over heels for it. The bright, pinky color looks stunning for the spring months, and just a light dusting across my cheekbones gives me a bright, girly look. I can already seeing this becoming my everyday blush this summer, and I couldn't be happier with it.
This bag checked all of the boxes this month- face, eyes, cheeks, and lips! All of them were perfect for the coming months, and it's been one of my all-time favorite bags from ipsy.

What products are you loving this spring? Let me know in the comments below!

Remember, I pay for all of my monthly glam bags myself, and I am not in any way influenced by Ipsy. All of my opinions are my own.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Twinkle Berry by Philosophy

I'm a sucker for a good shower gel. A sweet-smelling shower gel makes a shower so much more relaxing, and the room filling with a scent I love makes all the difference. Before I tried Philosophy's Three-in-One Twinkle Berry Shampoo, Shower Gel, and Bubble Bath, I'd hardly used anything by the brand. I received this as an Easter gift and was eager to try it out straight away! 
I was hesitant to use this as a shampoo since my previous experiences with products like these hasn't been the best, but I was pleasantly surprised with how it turned out. It was much gentler than I expected on my hair, but the consistency was a bit thicker than I like my shampoo, which, of course, is expected in a product like this. For a shower gel, this raspberry-scented number was just what the doctor ordered. I'd recently run out of shower gel and was on the lookout already, and this one was perfect. The strong scent is amazing, and I was shocked at how quickly the shower was filled with the smell. It works really well, and I'll definitely be continuing to use this for a while! You can find this at Beauty Bar here!

What's your favorite shower gel? Let me know in the comments below!

**This is not a sponsored post. I received this product as a gift from family, and my opinions are in no way influenced by Philosophy.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Taking the Pixie Plunge

A few weeks ago, I did something a bit drastic. I cut off all my hair. My long, purple hair that reached halfway down my hair back is sitting in a bag at the foot of my bed, ready to be shipped off to Locks of Love.
I'd been considering a pixie cut for nearly two weeks, and after finally settling on one I liked, I couldn't get it out of my head. I booked an appointment at Salon Visions in Tuscaloosa, and within seconds, my hair was gone! 

It was such an exhilarating experience, and I am SO happy that I went through with it. I'm finally letting my natural blonde grow out, much to my parents' relief, and I've never felt more confident and feminine. Feminine. I NEVER thought I'd say that about a short haircut, but truthfully, it makes me feel absolutely amazing about myself, and I don't regret it one bit. One thing's for sure, I'm not letting this baby grow out any time soon!
For my fellow pixie cut lovers out there, you can expect loads of new hair tutorials coming up, and as I'm changing up my product routine entirely, I can't wait to share what products I'm using to perfect my pixie. I'd love to hear any of you guys' opinions, and if there's any tutorial, style, or question in general you'd be interested in a post about, don't hesitate to drop a comment below! I love hearing what you lovelies have to say and what you're interested in.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Starry Sweaters and Haunted Hotels

Sweaters are a major staple in my wardrobe, no matter the weather. They're comfortable, warm, and they make a fun, casual statement. This is one of my favorite sweaters from Old Navy- it's fitted, has a lovely print, and it's patriotic!
I paired this top with my go-to Old Navy skinnies and high-tops. To carry a more relaxed feel throughout the look, I threw my hair into a loose side braid.
Here, I'm standing in front of the Cornstalk Fence Hotel on Royal Street in New Orleans. One of the most-visited sites in the French Quarter, many believe it's haunted. Dozens of it's visitors have reported hearing and seeing ghostlike children roaming the halls, and there are several reported instances of residents finding photos of themselves taken in their sleep that they hadn't taken themselves. I'm not one for superstition, but it's definitely an interesting place to visit.
What's your favorite place to grab a fun sweater? Let me know in the comments below!

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Bringing in Spring

Although spring started a few weeks ago, it seems like the spring feeling has finally caught on here in the past few days. We're getting loads of rain, and the weather is feeling absolutely perfect- not to mention the pollen that's suddenly begun to cover everything.
Muscle Shirt- Hot Topic, Flannel- Wet Seal, Jeans- Wet Seal, Sneakers- Converse

To welcome in the spring weather, I'm wearing one of my favorite muscle shirts from Hot Topic and a lightweight flannel that can easily be taken off and tied around my waist if it's getting too warm. For a more laidback look, I chose my white high-tops and plain skinny jeans to finish the look.
Have you begun adjusting your wardrobe to the approaching spring weather? Let me know in the comments below!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

My Eyebrow Waxing Horror Story

Waxing is a quick, effective way to groom your eyebrows, and if you know what you're doing, it can turn a pair of average eyebrows into the "on fleek" brows we've always dreamed of. This is what I thought two years ago when I decided to have my eyebrows done professionally for the first time, and my mom and I set out for Ulta to have them waxed.
When the lady brought out the wax, she first asked me if I was taking any oral medications for my skin. I told her that I wasn't, but I'd been using two topical acne medications over the past few months. She assured me that those wouldn't be an issue and continued getting out her supplies.

She applied the hot wax to my eyebrows, explaining that, since it was my first time, she was using a gentler wax that wouldn't be as painful. She put the strip over the wax and ripped it off, taking the brow hairs with it. So far, so good- it hadn't hurt nearly as much as I'd expected, and the lady said that it was going well.

She proceeded to wax the top of that eyebrow and my other one, but by the time she'd finished my other eyebrow, she started to notice some discoloration around that first strip she waxed. Additionally, they'd started to itch. The longer she waited, the worse they began to look and feel, and, too late, she realized that she hadn't just waxed my eyebrows- she'd taken the skin with it. Every part of me touched by the wax was bare. The skin was completely gone.

Naturally, seventh-grade me went into panic mode. I had a birthday party to go to that weekend! How could I possibly show my face when the skin above and below my eyebrows was scabbing over? Luckily, I had a dermatologist appointment already scheduled for later that day, and he told me that it was definitely a reaction between the retinol acne products I'd used and the wax that had caused this to happen. He told me that it would go away soon, and that in the meantime, I should put apply Neosporin to the areas on a regular basis.

Fortunately, my skin had mostly cleared up before the much-anticipated birthday party that weekend, and all was well- but ever since then, I've avoided eyebrow waxing like the plague, and since I still use the same products on my face, there isn't much chance I'll ever give it a try again.

If you're considering waxing your eyebrows for the first time, make sure to follow these guidelines to assure that your poor skin doesn't end up like mine did.

1. If you use retinol products, eyebrow waxing is always going to be off-limits. Topical retinol products make your skin much thinner; therefore, it's going to come right off during waxing.

2. Always, always, always have a patch test done before diving in head-first! If I'd been smart enough to ask for a patch test beforehand, I would have known how badly my skin would react before it was too late.

3. Lastly, do some research! Try a Google search on any product you use on your face that isn't makeup, and see if others that use it have had reactions when waxing. If they have, chances are, you will too!

If you've double-checked on all of these, you should be good to go! Waxing can be an amazing form of hair removal, and tons of people swear by it. Good luck!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Floral Fantasy Ipsy Bag

I received this glam bag a little late due to my New Orleans vacation this month, but I think that time waiting just made me more excited to try my new items! This bag is called Floral Fantasy, and it really tapped into my love for all things colorful and different.
The first product was this Glow Finishing Oil Treatment by Coolway. It's designed to be used on wet hair before blowdrying or on dry hair before styling to give your hair a shiny, touchable finish while restoring vibrancy to your color. I used this on dry hair, and I definitely noticed a difference in terms of how soft my hair felt. I take extremely good care of my hair in general, so I didn't notice much difference in terms of color vibrancy or shine, but I can definitely see this working well if you have dry or damaged hair.
These next items are Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels by skyn ICELAND. These gels are applied on the skin beneath your eyes to lessen wrinkles and tighten the bags under your eyes. This is honestly a product that I didn't really need. I have no issues with having heavy undereye bags, and I don't know why it was sent to me in particular. The whole process felt really weird to me, and I noticed no difference whatsoever after using it, but that's likely just because I wasn't a good candidate for this product.

This item was one of my favorite and least favorite products I've ever received in an Ipsy bag. It's the LANEIGE BB Cushion, and it worked wonders on my skin. It was beautifully smooth and evenly colored all day, and it was the perfect BB cream for me. The one reason that I didn't like it was the fact that a 0.5 oz container of this product costs thirty-four dollars! Personally, I don't think any beauty product is worth that much in such a small amount. Other than the price point, I have nothing but good things to say about this product.
I've always heard good things about Mary Kay, but I'd never actually tried anything by them until now. This is their Mary Kay at Play Eye Crayon in the shade Teal Me More, and being me, I love it because of the lovely greenish-blue color. It's easy to layer on top itself for a bold color, and it also looks stunning complimenting other shadows. It's such a fun product to play with, and it was definitely one of my favorite products this month!
I saved the best for last in this bag, and this NYX Butter Lipstick in the shade Hunk topped the charts for me. I love absolutely anything purple, and as I've been wanting to try a purple lipstick for months, I was thrilled to pull this out of the bag. I've tried NYX's Butter gloss and balm, both of which became staples in my beauty routine immediately, and the Butter lipstick did exactly the same. The deep plum color was absolutely gorgeous, and it gives my lips a fun pop of color that works for daytime and nighttime looks.
For the most part, I adored this bag, and I can't wait for next month! You can sign up to receive your monthly $10 bag at ipsy.com.

Remember, I pay for all of my monthly glam bags myself, and I am not in any way influenced by Ipsy. All of my opinions are my own.