Saturday, August 31, 2013

Review: Makeup Forever Mat Velvet

    So I went on a crusade to find the perfect matte foundation for this summer. I had been switching around between a tinted moisturizer and a mineral powder and a drugstore foundation with a mattifying powder. I wasn't totally happy with any of it. And as the heat started to ramp up this summer I kept getting shinier and shiner throughout the day. Needless to say, I was pissed.

       So I did a ton of research and searched through millions of reviews and finally settled on a couple of choices. When I got to my local (and favorite) Sephora and asked the girls what they suggested and finally came to Makeup Forever Mat Velvet... Unfortunatley, I have no idea what shade because I can't seem to find it written on the bottle. and I threw away the box a while ago. Long story short, I am OBSESSED with this foundation. You can build it to be a full coverage foundation. Or a medium coverage foundation if you apply it with your (CLEAN!!) fingers lightly. It can be a little to heavy for some summer days. Other than that, I absolutley love it.  It keeps me perfectly matte but not too powdery looking and the colors match perfectly. I mean I've almost tried every foundation and this is something that I will definitley purchase again.

ß Best Matte Foundation Award

XOXO Happy Long Weekend

Friday, August 30, 2013

Labor Day Weekend Inspiration

It's  rainy today where I am. It's been a lazy day but I've been feeling really inspired. Here's whats keeping a smile on my face this weekend before classes start and I TRY and keep from getting stressed. Keep it laid back and comfortable.

 [ALL pics courtesy of pinterest]

Have a wonderful relaxing Labor Day weekend. Take advantage of all those sales out there. I know I'll be online shopping like crazy.

Stay gorg.


Thursday, August 29, 2013

Lazy Girl Top Knot Tutorial

I am so one of those lazy girls who half way through the week just gives up on styling her hair in the morning. PLUS, I've been trying to wash less so I've been having to get really creative to look cute while dealing with greasies. I swear, the top knot had to have been created specifically for girls like me.  I've developed my own special lazy way of doing this look. Here's what you need:

Brush or comb (for light teasing), hairspray and bobby pins
Start with dry clean or dirty hair.

First: Flip hair over and spray dry shampoo from roots to mid length of hair. Let sit while you do makeup. Then massage into roots.If clean skip to step two.

Second:Flip hair and gather into high ponytail.

Hold end of ponytail and gently tease the whole pony.

Fold ponytail in half.

Wrap ends around the folded part and then fluff gently.

Pin ends in place and anywhere else you would like to keep bun in place.

Spritz bun with hairspray, if you want, to keep things in place.

And you have your self a fab, quick top knot for work or play.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Twisted Pony

     I got lazy this morning and slept in and decided not to wash my hair.  So I was sifting through Pinterest trying to find something I sort of style to pull my hair back into. I decided on a mimore laid back twist into a ponytail.

 I teased the crown and spritzed some Not Your Mothers Dry Shampoo in the roots. With an imperfect middle part twisted each section away from my face and rolled it back and pinned each side to hold in place. Then used another bobby pin to lock each side. and gather the base into a messy low ponytail and finished with some hair spray to hold the twists in place and ruffed up the crown a little bit. And that's it!

Voila! An easy laid back but proffessional style for going to work or anytime. Done and done.

P.S. Excuse my break out I never get anything this bad :( idk whats going on.


Monday, August 26, 2013

Back To College Bag/Desk Must Haves

Ahh!  about a week till classes start.  I'm in full on organization mode.  I love having everything clean and in it's place so there's less to worry about. ..and that sounds reaaaaly anal. But it's the truth.  There's a few things that I need in order to stay on track throughout the year.

1. A planner. This one is obvious. I mean I dont know how anyone can go without a planner. It just makes me feel way less stressed about my busy schedule. I usually right down important birthdates and phone numbers right away inside. I love Lilly Pulitzer planners, like this one here. 

2.  A small notebook. I always have a small ringed notebook to write to-do lists and little notes. It just helps to be able to right down what your thinking when you think it, then move on to the next thing. Try it. I promise you'll bring your stress level down instantly. P.S. I'm a list maker.....If you couldn't tell.

3. Post its & page flags. I use page flags to mark relevant sections to read and refer to when studying. Post its to coordinate them in my notes. Ex: Red page flag on Chapter 2 and Red post it notes refering to Chapter next to coordinating notes.

4. Laptop and/or desktop computer. For obvious reasons, dropbox, school email and papers/projects.

5. File folders & filing crates, I put filing crates near my desk and organize all my papers in categories, this helps me keep clutter off my desk by being able to locate a set spot for things that accumulate.

Ok... not only do I now feel totally crazy, I'm pretty sure you might too. These are the things I've found keep me on track and help me have a efficient and effective school year.


Sunday, August 25, 2013

Coconut Oil Hair Treatment

So i did a coconut oil hair treatment today. I thought I would share how I do it. 
I like doing these kinds of things on Sunday it make me feel better about it being Monday tomorrow.

sorry this pic is a little scary I had already  taken my makeup off.

One: I heat up coconut oil by running it under hot water from the faucet. 

Two: I get my hair wet with warm water and then ring the water out.

Three: Take a scoop and cover my wet hair from ends to almost to the crown. I dont like putting it on roots because I already have a hard enough time getting them volumized.

Four: I put it in a shower cap and blow dry it on hot for about 5 minutes then let sit for 30 minutes. 

Five : Rinse with hot/warm water to melt out any remnants off oil. 


I do this once every two weeks. 

Hats On

I have a minor ( OK, major) obsession with hats. I admire people who can style them correctly and look gorg. I just cant resist trying them on when I'm out shopping. I've been searching all summer for the perfect floppy hat. I just love how you a hat can instantly make an outfit a billion times more uber cool. I just can't resist saving pictures of girls in hats when I see them.

Don't you love Rosie Huntington-Whitley in this perfect for early fall combo?
There's just something so edgy about a panama hat or cool wool floppy hat or a straw fedora that fits just right.
Perfect way to up your cool factor without looking like your trying to hard.
What are your favorite styles of hat?

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Travel Bug

 Ive recently got this incredible desperate need to travel. It doesn't matter where as long as its somewhere I've never been before. And almost as strong a need is the one to capture those travels with stunning photography. Now I'm no photographer but I wish I was. I guess You could call me a amateur with an iPhone. But someday I hope to own a nice camera an maybe even a GoPro and maybe have enough money left over for a flight to Europe... ok the West Coast would do.  But really take me anywhere. In an age where everyone is having babies so young I just cant imagine being so tied down with kids. Yes, I'm engaged   but I dont think that being committed to my best friend is holding me back. I think its a step forward. Anyway here's a few pics from my photo diary of our trip to Munising Michigan this past weekend. 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Fall Nails & Lips

    It's hard to deny that Fall is on it's way in. We've been having crazy weather the last few weeks where I live, freeezing cold to steaming hot. But I've been seeing alot of posts out there about being excited about fall and fall fashion. I love going back to school, I take that back, I love shopping for going back to school. All the rich fall colors and cute layers. I've been searching for the perfect pair of tall leather riding boots to add to my essentials. IN LOVE with any and all Tory Burch boots. I'll do a separate post on fall fashion must haves but today I wanted to talk about Fall nail and lip colors. Since matte darks were really  in last year for winter and glossy is always in for summer I've been looking forward to rocking a mix for fall. I love rocking a red glossy lip. I love this photo from Vogue.

Here's my picks for the coming cold months.

From left to right: Can you tell I love revlon! Revlon Smoked Peach, Revlon Cherries In The Snow, Revlon Berry Haute, Covergirl Flame, Rimmel Bordeaux, Revlon Fatal Apple, Revlon Rose.

 I'm thinking dark lips or red lips with a glossy finish. And I  picked up some nail colors to add to my collection. I'm digging deep rich colors. Also I like to throw in a shimmery color here and there.
Here's my picks for nails!


Okay this is kind of sort of an awful picture but i just couldn't capture the darks and the lights at the same time. So here it is: Sinful Colors Rich in Heart, Essie Penny Talk, Essie Topless & Barefoot ( kind of a greigeish pink but so perfect I love it), O.P.I Casino Royale, O.P.I Shim-Merry Chic, O.P.I The Living Daylights and Revlon Plum Night.

What's your go to fall nail shade!?


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

My Healthy Hair Journey: Part 1


 I've been trying for years to get my hair to grow longer. I've searched and searched for ways to grow it, but it really comes down to having truely healthy hair and not only healthy hair, a healthy lifestyle and healthy skin. I've done tons of research and here's what I narrowed down.

So here's my plan.

1.  I just stocked up on all my favorite vitamins and supplements to support healthy skin, hair and nails. I use a daily Womens Multivitamin, 100Mg Biotin and adding a Vitamin E softgel. I've been toying with the idea of purchasing a Prenatal vitamin (NO, I'm not pregnant!) I've heard its the perfect combination of vitamins for flawless skin and long hair.
Find them here.

P.S. I also take a Melatonin for stress relief and sleep. Not sure if that helps anything directly beauty wise but it helps me fall asleep nice and early for my beauty sleep. :)

2. Cut majorly down on heat and possibly even start a no heat weekends. Braid or air dry in a high bun for volume and body.

3. Wash less, I mean WAYYYY less. Right now I'm using a sulfated shampoo 0-1 times a week. I've been using the Walgreens brand "Wen" dupe most of the other days. I don't know if this does anything. And not using shampoo two days a week. I have really oily skin and hair... so I think this is going to be the hardest part of the journey. GO as long as possible without washing. Top knots are perfect for this. They're cute and they cover the greasies.

4. Massaging your scalp.. in the shower, before bed, in the morning. Get the blood flowing in your scalp. To expand on this, get your blood flowing in general, working out keeps your skin glowing too!

5. Morroccan oil! This is a must have for healthy hair. Smooth & scrunch a few drops into damp hair and lightly comb out with a wide tooth comb. Find it here.

6. Speaking of combs, use a really wide shower comb for wet hair and be gentle. Start at the ends and work your way up. Find them here.

7.Deep condition one to two days a week. With a deep conditioning treatment or plain coconut oil for 30 minutes to an hour. Buy some here or at you nearest grocery store.

8. TRIMS. Here's the controversy, hairstylist say trim hair every two months or even every 6 weeks. I say trim the split ends and keep hair healthy so that it doesnt break. So maybe I'm breaking the rules but I say if you keep hair from breaking then what will there be to trim?!


Monday, August 19, 2013

CURRENT Daily Beauty Routine


      I thought I would share my first personal beauty routine. Now, I have to say as a disclaimer , my beauty routine changes pretty much month to month. There are some things that will never change about it but others I just haven't found my holy grail product yet. I think every woman is continuously on the search for their perfect product.
  I know many girls who will tell me that a product is there favorite ever and it will never change.But when I try it I'm just not a fan. Not everyones skin is the same type ( obviously) and everyone feel comfortable with different things so without further adieu.... here's mine.

1. I always start with a clean face using some sort of scrub. I include this because to me this is part of my beauty routine... it would be wrong to put makeup on a dirty, oily face. Since I have oily skin I like using a scrub to help my face get it's cleanest. You might want to use anything from a mild cleanser to an abrasive scrub depending on your skin type. I've been using Clean & Clear Morning Burst Skin Brightening Scrub for $6.99 at Walgreens.


BUT I read an article somewhere that the little "bursting beads" in these types of face washes are polluting the Great Lakes. So I plan on either getting something a little more organic or creating my own sugar scrub for cleansing. Either way face wash/scrub stays an essential part of the routine.

2. Next, I apply an eye cream. Using my ring finger I dab a tiny bit around each eye making sure toe get both corners and the eyelid. I just feel like I like a little extra moisture around my eye area because it's such fragile skin it needs a little extra protection from daily wear.
I've been using Arbonne Intelligence Daily Eye Cream for both day and night time ....when I'm not wearing my Garnier night cream. I can't remember how much this was or where I got it from but it does the job. I'm sure I'll switch it up once its gone.

3. Third, I slather on a generous amount of facial moisturizer. I love Shiseido Pureness Mattifying Moisturizer for summer. It really moisturizes and makes my face feel fresh and not to heavy because it's like this gel/liquid form. I'm a BIG fan of this stuff but I'm not so sure how it will carry over into the colder months. I might have to get a step up from this light mattifying moisturizer.--$33.50 at Sephora.

4. Then I generally always apply a primer. I'm loving Smashbox Photo Finish Primer Light for $36.00 at Sephora. I use a pea size amount and rub a light layer all over my face with kind of a dabbing massaging motion. I LOVE this stuff it's "LIGHT" so it refreshes and keeps my shine from peeking through. This is a must for longwear makeup...  for days at work or special occasions.

5. MAKEUP TIME!!  I'm gonna do one step for face and another  for the rest.  So, I start with a foundation, I usually switch off between two different foundations and mix it up every couple months but I always go back to L'Oreal True Match in N3 Natural Buff or I use Makeup Forever Mat Velvet for more coverage or special occasion. It blends well I use clean fingers to blend in or a blending brush. Pro Flawless Airbrush #56 from Sephora works perfect. Then I use Laura Mercier Secret Camoflauge under my eyes and on any blemishes and around my nose. The texture of this product is so versatile. Definitley a go-to product. I set all over with  Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder in 20 Nude Beige. Generally I do a sweep and a little contouring with NARS Laguna  or a great dupe Rimmel Natural Bronzer in 27 SunDance. Blush, I use a combination of NARS Orgasm and Wet'N Wild Heather Silk.  For finishers, I sweep a ELF Kabuki brush all over to blend everything out and finish face with a couple spritzes of Urban Decay De-slick Makeup Setting Spray.

6. I'm definitley a  UD-NAKED pallette girl I have 1,2 and the basics pallettes... along with backups. (GUILTY) I usually sweep on some combination of colors from any of these pallettes, either with or without an eye primer.. I have several. I lightly pencil in my eyebrows using Maybelline Master Shape in Blonde. Then follow with two or three coats of Maybelline FULL'N'SOFT. in very black I absolutely LOVE  this mascara I've always used it and I'll never be without it, the waterproof version is great also. Most days I put a little thin winged liner-Revlon Colorstay Liquid Eye Pen. End with a coat of They're Real Mascara by Benefit and once my lashes dry I lightly do one last curl. I know you're not supposed to do that but I've never had a problem as long as you're gentle.

some things aren't shown, just what I had on hand
I KNOW, I know that sounds like a TON of makeup, but I promise I don't do everything every single day and it's usually just a little bit of each. I just thought I'd cover all my bases and sneak in everything that I would do if I was going all out!

Last but not least, I love layering Revlon Primrose and Rimmel Crush lightly on my lips t get the perfect color or use a L'Oreal Color Riche Balm when I'm really rushing.


Sunday, August 18, 2013

Think Less, Live More

      Mike and I planned a daytrip for today... He's been wanting to go to the casino and weve been so busy the past few weekend we haven't gotten the chance. So I promised him we could go this Sunday so last night we decided to make of day of it. So we slept in and got ready and headed downtown Milwaukee for brunch at Cafe Benelux. (I'm a big bloody mary fan.) We had an incredible meal, eggs benedict for me and biscuits and gravy for him. I convinced him to come with me the literally 100 ft to Anthropologie. By the way, I think it bears pointing out that it's genius that they have a couch in there. I've seen many a woman pull her man into that store and a near visible sigh of relief when they see a comfy couch to sit and wait on. (I've even witnessed one man full on sleeping on this very couch.)  This store is the closest one to me but since it's all the way downtown it's hard to make it down there. Unfortunatley, today wasn't a shopping day so I kept it short and sought out for inspiration. Every time I go there I'm always drawn to the little tables with various books, notebooks, candles and nicknacks, they make me feel like im just wandering around someones (extremely chic and well stocked) apartment.

very serious menu reading@ Benelux
 [See right.]
Mike jokes that I insist on smelling every single candle in the entire store (yes, I'm that girl.) I always go in prepared to fall in love and buy something but I never seem to be able to justify least not on a college student salary.  I always think to myself that 'I could find something just like that for cheaper' or 'doesn't Marshalls have something just like this.' I admit I'm a bargain hunter with very expensive inspiration. I love a good trip to J.Crew but only ever leave with the essentials. I'm always eyeing up those gorg necklaces. (Someday I WILL OWN ONE). I think I kind of pride myself on being able to find the near perfect dupe for almost anything high-end or high style. I have a couple J.Crew-esque bubble necklaces found at Kohls. It's almost my hobby though, searching through little home-owned boutiques and finding things that I'm certain Anthropologie would covet for their little perfectly styled tables. Anyways, I think its more fun and it means more when you go out and have a story to go with your coffee table full of cuteness.

After wandering through the casino and watching Mike in "little kid in a candy store" mode, I just realized that even though I hate casinos...and Mike hates Anthropologie, sometimes you just go along for the experience. Stop thinking about how unfun it's going to be and find something to catch your interest. I started realizing how much I love the people watching in casinos. Its fascinating all the different types you find. All the different rituals and lucky charms people insist on. My favorite is peoples faces when they're playing slot machines. Or watching the dealers hand movements. It's and entire culture of it's own and if you haven't been, you must! (At least just once....for the story.)

Anyway, after a our little daytrip adventure, not to mention getting lost in the Latino part of Milwaukee. (I loved it all the spanish language signs, I wanted to take pictures but I was driving!) We drove home for a family dinner at Mike's parents house and finally ended a beautiful weekend with a stunning sunset.

This may or may not have already become my new phone background for the week.
I wish you lots of love and inspiration this week.