Wednesday, December 11, 2013

ipsy - December 2013

Subscription purchased by me, affiliate links within post

December's ipsy bag was a mix of good and bad. I've loved ipsy this year, but wish they had ended 2013 on a better note! 

Click below to see this month's ipsy bag!

Monday, December 9, 2013

NOTD - Blue Christmas Snowflakes

Every year, I look forward to creating some pretty Christmas nails. This year, I decided to go with a twinkling snowflake design. Hope you like!

This was before I cleaned up my nails, unfortunately!

What I used:
Seche Clear (base coat)
Seche Vite (top coat)
Wet n Wild "French White"
L'Oreal "Not a Cloud in Sight"
Zoya "Neve"
Wet n Wild "Bling It On!"
Confetti "Ice Ice Baby"
H&M "Blue"
H&M Blue Glitter

Did you paint your nails a funky Christmas design this year? I'd love to see! Share in the comments!


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Maybelline Fall 2013 Lipsticks

Out of the four limited edition Fall 2013 lipsticks released by Maybelline, I picked up only two: "Violet Intrigue" and "Lavender Voltage." I was very conflicted by the swatches I'd seen online. It seemed like the lipsticks would either be a hit or a big miss.

I'm glad I took the chance on these. They are a lot more flattering than I thought they'd be.

Click below to see the swatches!

Monday, November 25, 2013

NOTD - Sugar Skull Phalanges

What I used:
Seche Clear (base coat)
Seche Vite (top coat)
Deborah Lippmann "Mermaid's Dream"
Acrylic paint for the Sugar Skull

I painted this nail design last month before Halloween. I had anticipated taking some more pictures of my nails, so this is a shot before the cleanup step. Unfortunately, I didn't have time to take another picture and the acrylic paint began chipping off hours later. 

I love how it turned out, just wish it had lasted a bit longer!!


Friday, November 22, 2013

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Trip to Wisconsin - Part Two!

Click {here} if you haven't read Part 1!

Trip to Wisconsin - Part One

Last month, my sister bought my husband, Sam, and I a getaway trip to Wisconsin. We stayed in a cabin named "Rustic Retreat." The main draw for this cabin was its distance from reality and no cell service.

No cell service!

Click below for LOADS of pictures!!

Friday, November 15, 2013

ipsy - October 2013

Subscription purchased by me, affiliate links within post

Click below to see this month's ipsy bag!

Update! (More to Come)

Hello everyone!

Just a quick update before I release some of my new posts. I know I haven't been here in a while and I wanted to let you guys know what has been going on.

These past few months have been very hard for me.

I've been very sick and have been to several doctors. I've been unable to wear eye makeup up until recently, which has also been frustrating. I'm just now getting better. Those of you who follow my Instagram might have noticed I'm a bit more cheerful lately-- this is why!

School and work have been pilling on me to the point where I haven't had much time for anything else. A few of my co-workers recently quit and that's caused a strain at work. As for school, I'll be graduating this Spring! This, however, means I have a lot to get done. I've decided to go on for my Master's degree and I've been using my downtime to figure that out.

Some of you may remember a personal post from a long time ago when I mentioned my little brother had passed. This weekend marks one year since his death. I don't know how to feel about this or even what more I can say.

With everything that's been going on, I just needed an extended break to deal.

But....I never wanted to completely step away from the blogging community. Even then, I still would write down blog ideas or map posts out a bit.

I do have quite a few update posts to tell you what I've been up to, aside from all this negative stuff, which I'd rather not dwell on!

I've missed blogging and I'm ready to come back to that.

I hope you guys are still interested.


Saturday, September 14, 2013

ipsy - September 2013

Subscription purchased by me, affiliate links within post

September's ipsy bag featured items for the classic beauty. When I think of "classic beauty," I think winged liner, thick lashes, and luscious red lips. 

Click below to see this month's ipsy bag!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Pixiwoo at Ulta!

Pixiwoo is on a tour through the U.S. and stopped by the Ulta in Kildeer, IL today. You guys might have noticed I'm a pretty huge fan of Pixiwoo, so of course I trekked it on over to Kildeer from South Chicago. My husband would note it took nearly two hours, with traffic.

The event was advertised as a meet and greet with Samantha Chapman, but I was so happy to hear (I was checking the Facebook every few minutes on the ride over) that Nicola would be there as well!

I wasn't sure what to expect and I was very nervous walking into the store.

I didn't even notice the free brush promotion until after I'd purchased a set!

When I arrived, Sam and Nic were posing for fan pictures. They had just finished a set of Q&A's. I quickly got in line and worked my way up to where they stood.

They were so tall compared to this tiny gal, haha!

I hadn't quite made up my mind on what to say until it was my turn for a picture. I told them how their videos have been such an inspiration and help in getting my self-confidence back. They were so sweet and humble. Nic told me I had plenty to be confident about and should be confident in myself. They both thanked me and we took this picture. It came out a bit blurry, unfortunately. I wish I could have told them more about how hard my life has been and to have articulated just how much makeup has come to mean to me, but I think the sentiment came across to them.

Captured the moment she addressed the black eye issue.

After the picture session, the girls began another Q&A. There were some great questions asked, one of which was from a guy asking how to conceal a black eye! Samantha applied a red lip on a fan who had a question on lip liners. She looked great! I asked them on tips for picking the right undereye concealer. Their advice was to look at whether the concealer made my undereye area gray (if it does, it's too light). Nic also said to try applying a very small amount of orange or red lipstick in combination with my concealer to see if that works.

Pictures of Samantha were then passed around and a line was formed for autographs. These fans were pretty intense! One of the fans asked the ladies to sign her arm! Samantha said it was a first.

When it was my turn, I once again thanked Sam and Nic for everything. My husband, Sam, jokingly said I was a huge fan and he was a "longtime listener," which made the ladies laugh.

Samantha was concentrating on taking the selfie!

After signing the picture, we posed for a "selfie." My arms were too short, so Samantha took the picture for us haha. I was still a bit emotional at this point, as you can tell. I gave both another hug and then that was it.

I walked out in an almost state of shock, not fully accepting what had just happened; I met Pixiwoo! One life goal, down! I'm so glad to have met them and to have walked out knowing they really are as great in person as they are in camera. Thank you, Ulta for hosting the event and thank you Pixiwoo, for your years of advice.


Sunday, September 8, 2013

FOTD - Lucky Green

A couple of weeks ago I was in a funk. I'd just gotten over this extreme fit of allergies and I was feeling restless. I woke up at nine and decided to head out, bright and early, to the mall.

To be honest, I'm not sure I'd ever been to the mall this early. The store clerks were putting the final touches on their window displays and slowly their gates began to slide open.

I hit up a few stores, but couldn't shake that feeling of unsatisfaction. I wanted something, but couldn't quite put my finger on it.

I looked at various shirts and jewelry, hit up the usual places, but left empty handed.

Finally. I arrived at Macy's and headed to MAC.

At this point, my eyeshadow palette had yet to be filled. I swatched as I always do, looking for the one shade that will pop out and say "take me home!!" Still, I wasn't sold.

I left a few swatches on my hand and walked out.

It wasn't until I had walked into the morning sun and took another glance that I noticed the stunner:

Lucky Green.

I could suddenly see the different ways to pair the glinting, golden green and I turned right around for it.

After that long introduction, here is the look I envisioned with Lucky Green.

Sonia Kashuk tinted moisturizer in Tan
MAC Stereo Rose, Sweet as Cocoa
Benefit Girl Meets Pearl
MAC Rice Paper, highlight

MAC paint pot in Indianwood
MAC Woodwinked, Lucky Green, Swiss Chocolate, Embark, Bronze, Ricepaper
Urban Decay eyeliner in Underground, Zero
Rimmel London Scandaleyes pencil in 003 Bad Girl Bronze


Have you ever had a similar experience finding a new shade?

Friday, September 6, 2013

Finally Finished: My MAC Palette!

Hello everyone! I'm so excited to finally write this post. After three long years I have finally finished filling my MAC eyeshadow palette.

It took a long time of figuring out what shades worked for me and what type of looks I like (or would like) to create.

So, without further it is:

Click below for more!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Birchbox - August 2013

Subscription purchased by me, affiliate links within post

{In this month's box}:
Miss Jessie's Original Super Slip Sudsy Shampoo
Violet Oasis 100% Organic Argan Oil
Mally Beauty Evercolor Starlight Watercolor Eye Liner in "Sailor"
BECCA Radiant Skin Satin Finish Foundation
Arangara Body Lotion

Miss Jessie's Original Super Slip Sudsy Shampoo

According to the packaging, this shampoo is best for curly hair. I've actually just ran out of shampoo, so I'll be trying this one out soon. Hopefully it works well. 

Violet Oasis 100% Organic Argan Oil

My love affair with oils and serums continues! I like to use these to help keep my frizz in check, they're the only things that work! Violet Osais' argan oil has no scent, which is a plus if you don't care for scented hair products. It left my hair feeling soft, without feeling greasy. 

Mally Beauty Evercolor Starlight Watercolor Eye Liner in "Sailor"

This eyeliner is quite pigmented! I received the color "Sailor," which is a dark navy blue. It's not too noticeable unless you are in brighter lighting which can be both a good and bad thing. I personally like that it's not so obvious, it looks like a toned down black with a bit of a punch. 

BECCA Radiant Skin Satin Finish Foundation

I still have not tried out this foundation, but I have to stress that I'm REALLY glad they did not send only one shade; we were sent SIX different shades to test! I received the shades: Olive, Noisette, Tan, Bamboo, Fawn, and Cafe. The only downside to this is there is less product to test, but I will gladly take this sample over a bigger one, because I can figure out which shade I match best to. 

Arangara Body Lotion

This lotion is a bit too thick and perfumed for me. I will be giving this one away. 

I'm a bit worn out on all these moisturizers from Birchbox, which is part of the reason I've decided to take a break from the service. These last few months I haven't felt very satisfied with my boxes, but mostly I've felt overloaded with samples. I may resubscribe later on in the year, particularly for the holidays.

You can purchase a subscription to Birchbox through my referral link {here} or just go to

What did you think of this month's box?

Monday, August 5, 2013

FOTN - Ruby Red

Later that night, I decided to toss on some red lipstick. Not sure why my hair looks black here, but I like it. Don't you just love MAC's Ruby Woo?

Face & Eye list available {here}

MAC Ruby Woo

What's your favorite red lipstick?


FOTD - Natural Nancy

I've been trying to achieve that glowing, but not frosty, natural, but not made-up look for a while now. I think today I finally nailed it. There are so many tutorials for this kind of "natural" look, but they would tend to look artificial on me. What I realized last year and I need to keep in mind is that not all colors look the same on everyone! It took me a long time to figure out this combination, but finally! Here is my natural, glowing look.

Sonia Kashuk tinted moisturizer in Tan
Laura Mercier Golden Mosaic bronzer
MAC Rice Paper highlight
Benefit Girl Meets Pearl
MAC Stereo Rose, Coppertone

MAC Indianwood paint pot
Inglot 368 (matte neutral peach)
MAC Soft Brown, Swiss Chocolate, Mulch, Bronze, Embark, Rice Paper
Urban Decay eyeliner in Demolition
Mary Kay lash primer
Mary Kay Lash Love Lengthening mascara

Sonia Kashuk lipstick in Sheer Bronzey Nude

What are your go-to products for a natural look?


Sunday, August 4, 2013

ipsy - July 2013

Subscription purchased by me, affiliate links within post

This month's ipsy bag was all about beauty at the beach. It couldn't have come at a better time, what with Chicago being hit with heat wave after heat wave. I honestly haven't felt up to wearing makeup lately, but this heat still can't tame my excitement over this month's ipsy bag arrival!

Click below to read more!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Birchbox - July 2013

Subscription purchased by me, affiliate links within post

{In this month's box}:
BENTA Berry G-1 Moisturizing Face Cream, matifying
100% Pure Nourishing Body Cream, Green Apple
Number 4 Super Comb Prep & Protect
Benefit "Girl Meets Pearl"
Extra: Birchbox Bobby Pins

BENTA Berry G-1 Moisturizing Face Cream, matifying

I did not like this face cream at all. It left a white residue all over my face. Not the look I normally go for! 

100% Pure Nourishing Body Cream, Green Apple

I'm not a fan of apple scented products, so I was already put off by this sample before trying it. What I did not expect upon opening the foil packet was the striking sour hint within the scent. It reminds me of the sour apple gum I would have as a child and that's not really something I'd like to smell like nowadays. 

Number 4 Super Comb Prep & Protect

This month's box was jam-packed with samples with unexpected smells. This one blew me away. This sample smells like CHOCOLATE! It's not a bad smell, but oddly pleasant. It also left my ends feeling pretty soft. I wouldn't recommend if you're hungry, haha. 

Benefit "Girl Meets Pearl"

There is so much hype on this highlighter, but I had never actually tried it. I've used Benefit's "Highbeam" highlighter in the past and loved it, so I will probably end up loving this one as well. "Girl Meets Pearl"is slightly darker than "Highbeam" and very sheer in application. I think "Girl Meets Pearl" is more flattering in its subtlety, but not great for those nights when you want to go ALL out. 

Extra: Birchbox Bobby Pins

I don't wear bobby pins much and definitely don't wear large colorful ones. The design is pretty cute, but I doubt I will get much use out of these, so I will be giving them away to a friend. 

This month's Birchbox was all about the working girl, on and off the clock. I guess Birchbox things what us working girls need is to moisturize; two moisturizing creams (one for face, one for body) in one box? This box was just OK for me. It had a few hits and a few misses. What I loved most was the unexpected smells! This box was just fun to open. I can't wait to see what next month will bring.

You can purchase a subscription to Birchbox through my referral link {here} or just go to

What did you think of this month's box?


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Birchbox - June 2013

Subscription purchased by me, affiliate links within post

What was in this month's box:
Color Club Wanderlust Collection nail polish in "London Calling"
LAQA & Co. Lil' Lip pencil in "Pinkman"
Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser
Davines 3-Step System: Love Smoothing Shampoo, Love Smoothing Conditioner, OIL/OIL

Color Club Wanderlust Collection nail polish in "London Calling"

I love, love, love this mint green nail polish! It has quickly become my favorite go-to color this Summer. "London Calling" is part of Color Club's Wanderlust nail polish Collection. I thought the nail polishes fit very well into the theme, which I found to be pretty refreshing. 

The other colors in the collection include: 

London Calling - sunny green
Reign in Spain - fiery coral
Pardon My French - lavender
Mod in Manhattan - brilliant off-white

LAQA & Co. Lil' Lip Pencil in "Pinkman"

Pictured is actually the second sample I received. The first one came splattered all over my box. Thankfully, Birchbox was able to send me a replacement sample (which is not what usually happens whenever I've received a damaged sample). The pencil itself was very nice. "Pinkman" was a super pigmented, bold berry that can be built up or toned down to your liking. It wasn't streaky at all, which is definitely a bonus when it comes to lip pencils! This lip pencil is available as a duo set on the Birchbox website.

Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser

I love trying new skin products, especially when it comes to exfoliants and cleansers. So you can imagine my excitement when I saw this foaming exfoliating cleanser in this month's box. Upon opening the jar, I was hit with a strong lemon scent. It is not overpowering at all, but very sweet. The cleanser itself is very lightweight and does leave my face feeling very clean. I am in LOVE with this little exfoliating cleanser.

Davines 3-Step System

The Davines 3-step system is a trio of samples to help combat frizzy hair. Perfect for my hair! The trio includes:

Davines Love Smoothing Shampoo
Davines Love Smoothing Conditioner
Davines OIL/OIL

I  have yet to try this trio out, but will update now that my current shampoo/conditioners have run out. Hopefully this trio works!

This month's box is still a bit up in the air for me, but I found a few things I truly enjoyed that might even replace current favorites.

You can purchase a subscription to Birchbox through my referral link {here} or just go to

What did you think of this month's box?


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

FOTD - Movie Night!

My guy and I went out to watch "This Is the End" a few weeks ago. I haven't laughed so hard in a long time. If you've been iffy about watching it, go check it out! It's hilarious!

Anywho, here's the look I wore out for the special occasion.

Sonia Kashuk tinted moisturizer in Tan
MAC Desert Rose
MAC Sunbasque
MAC Rubenesque
MAC Amberlights, Swiss Chocolate + Soft Brown, Vibrant Grape, Ricepaper
Urban Decay eyeliner in Demolition
Tarte mascara in Lights, camera, lashes!

Rimmel London lipstick by Kate in 104

Here is my look under different, better lighting. 

I wish I'd gotten better pictures of this look! The colors are off on those other pictures no matter how I tweak them. The lighting in my house is frustrating sometimes. New goal for the end of this year: get better lighting!

Have you gone to see "This Is the End" yet?


Monday, July 22, 2013

Quick Update!

Hello guys and dolls!

I just wanted to post a quick update:

School is currently kicking my ass. Math has never been my thing and I'm taking an accelerated speed Stats class right now.

I do have a few posts lined up, which should be coming up soon (next week).

Wish me luck on my test this Wednesday!

Hope you are all having a wonderful (and less stressful) Summer!!


Thursday, June 27, 2013

Face Painting Fanatic!

Hello all! I thought I'd post some of my newer face painting creations for those of you who don't follow my FP page on Facebook.

Enjoy~ and follow me {here}

This is my take on a Minnie Mouse design

Sam is a metallic blue monster!

Darwin from The Amazing World of Gumball.

Practicing Roses

More practice, but this time it's butterflies!

Lastly, a neon colored tiger!

Hope you enjoyed and don't forget to follow my official face painting Facebook Page {here!!!}


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