Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Makeup of the day: 09/03/14

Covergirl Ready Set Gorgeous Fresh Complexion Foundation in shade 105
Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Dark Circles Eraser in Fair
Benefit Boi-ing Concealer in Shade 01
Everyday Minerals Sunlight Color Corrector
Everyday Minerals Mineral Blush in At First Blush
Pop Beauty Sunkissed Bronzer in Secret Sunshine
e.l.f. Studio Baked Highlighter in Blush Gems
e.l.f. Studio Flawless Concealer Brush
EcoTools Contour Kabuki
EcoTools Concealer Kabuki
Beauty Junkees Flat Top Kabuki
e.l.f. Studio Makeup Mist and Set
e.l.f. Eyebrow Kit in Light
Ulta Super Stretch Fiber Mascara
e.l.f. Mineral Mascara
Eyelash curler
Ulta Dual Ended Eyeliner (not pictured)
Jordana Twist & Shine Balm Stain in Honey Love

My insomnia kicked in really badly the night before this so on this day I focused on making my makeup look dewy and fresh. The star of the show was the e.l.f. Studio Baked Highlighter, which gives the most gorgeous glow. I swept this across the top of my cheekbones, down my nose, and right along my brow bone.  I didn't want to do anything too dark on the eyes so I used the Ulta eyeliner along my upper lashline and then blended it out with an eyeliner brush (also not pictured) to soften it up. I went rosy on the cheeks and lips to bring a little color to my face. I was kind of unsure about this blush when I purchased it because I was skeptical that the color would look good on me but since getting it I've been obsessed and I don't think I've used anything else. It gives such a pretty natural flush and there is so much product in the container-- it will take me ages to use it up.

I really liked the way this look came together-- in the end I think I looked a lot more awake than I felt!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Makeup of the day, 09/02/14

Products used:
Covergirl Ready Set Gorgeous Fresh Complexion Foundation in Shade 105
Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Dark Circles Eraser in Fair
Pop Beauty Sunkissed Bronzer in Secret Sunshine
Everyday Minerals Sunlight Color Corrector
e.l.f. High Definition Powder
Everyday Minerals Mineral Blush in At First Blush
Beauty Junkees Flat Kabuki
EcoTools Contour Kabuki
Ulta Super Stretch Fiber Mascara
e.l.f. Mineral Mascara (lower lashes only)
Ulta Dual Ended Eyeliner (Black- upper waterline only)
Eye lash curlers (no idea what the brand is)
Ulta Eyeshadows in (from left to right) Truffle, Eggplant, and Buttercream
e.l.f. Eyebrow kit in Light (powder only)
Jordana Twist & Shine Balm Stain in Honey Love

I'm not even going to try to make excuses for why it has taken me so long to post here. Instead, I'm going to introduce a new series on this blog: my makeup of the day! I won't post a look every day (I tend to do the same look for a few days in a row) but I'll try to post a few looks a week. This is helpful for me because often I'll look back at pictures of myself and love the way my makeup looked on a particular day, but I'll have totally forgotten what I was wearing-- so I'm hoping that by documenting the process, I'll gain a better idea of what products I like (and what they look like, even if I haven't used them in ages) and hopefully this will push me to try out new things and make more use of products in my collection.

I wore this look on my first day of class, and I wanted to do a fall smokey eye that was still subtle and natural enough for school. I got these Ulta eyeshadows (along with the mascara, eyeliner, and some other great products) for free by spending $19.50 on Ulta products. I really L O V E all the shadows I've tried (but I haven't used all the shades yet). I swept Truffle, which is a gorgeous shimmery taupe, all over the lids and then added Eggplant in the outer corners and blended it into the crease. I realllllly blended it in (because it was looking a bit dark for daytime) and I used Buttercream to blend out and soften the edges. I'm also really digging the Ulta mascara-- I've always been afraid of using fiber mascaras because I have ridiculously sensitive eyes and I was worried about fibers falling into my eyes all day. I'm pleased to report that I haven't had any issues with that with this mascara. It really lengthens my lashes but in a natural, not clumpy way. My only problem with it is that it's a bit on the dry side and I feel like I have to run the brush through my lashes a million times to build it up. Also, that Jordana balm stain-- on point. The stain lasts literally all day (through three meals and countless cups of coffee). Seriously impressive and the color is gorgeous.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Victoria's Secret Semi-Annual Sale Haul

(Only by sheer coincidence are two Victoria's Secret posts appearing back to back)

I had a meeting to go to in the city today right down the block from Victoria's Secret. I decided to pop in because I had heard some good things about some of their beauty products (their illuminator/highlighter, specifically). I didn't find what I went there for, but I did not leave the store empty-handed. Whoops! Here's a peek at what I purchased.

Victoria's Secret Eau de Parfum: Seduction Dark Orchid
1.7 Fl Oz, $52

What Victoria's Secret says: "Provocative. Luxurious. The ultimate expression of sexy. Give in to Victoria’s Secret Seduction—our most exclusive fragrance collection yet. Designed to seduce the senses, Dark Orchid is a signature blend of midnight orchid, crushed plum and oud wood. Spray on to wrap skin in dark luxury."

Top notes: Crème de cassis, blood orange, crushed plum, pineapple blossom, bergamot, yuzu zest
Middle notes: Jasmine, red ginger orchid, dark red calla lilies, midnight orchid, muguet petals
Dry-down notes: Smooth warm amber, oud wood, tonka beans, amber crystals, cashmere woods, creamy musk

A very helpful employee helped me find this scent. I've never purchased any kind of fragrance from Victoria's Secret (or from any clothing store, for that matter) and I'm a little picky about scents. I'm very sensitive to florals and artificial fruity/food smells. I'd describe my fragrance preference as being "warm/spicy" and this scent really fits the bill. It's not my absolute favorite scent but it's very "me" and I enjoy it quite a lot. Plus the bottle is beautiful! I'm really excited to wear this.

Victoria's Secret Fragrance Mist: Midnight Dare
8.4 Fl Oz, $14.50
What Victoria's Secret says: "
Be bold in the vivacious blend you know and love of juicy raspberry and tempting sandalwood, back for a limited time and infused with conditioning Aloe Vera and calming chamomile. Experience the fantasy. Spray on anywhere for a sexy touch of scent."

I totally dropped the ball on this one, there was a great deal going on where you could get 3 VS Fantasies products for $25 or 5 for $30 and I meant to pick up 2 other fragrances but I was so overwhelmed by the sheer number of scents (and trying to pick ones that I liked) that I only grabbed one. I like this scent though-- it's a bit sweeter than Seduction but still a bit spicy. Victoria's Secret classifies this as a "seductive warm" scent. Works for me! Nothing makes me feel more pampered and girly than new fragrances so I was really excited to pick up both of these. And even at the regular price of $14.50, I think this is a great deal.

(Also featured in this photo are two eye shadows which will appear later)

Victoria's Secret Make It Last Prime & Set Makeup Spray
4.05 Fl Oz, ~$3
This was on sale for 75% off and unfortunately I've already misplaced my receipt but it was about $3 or $3.50. I can't find this product on the website anymore so maybe it's discontinued? Victoria's Secret says this product:
  • Ensures smear-, smudge-, and budge-proof makeup for up to 8 hours
  • Under makeup, provides a smooth and seamless application
  • Over makeup, helps hold the look in place
I'm close to running out of my e.l.f. setting spray so I'm looking forward to giving this a try! I'd like to see if it holds up to the budge-proof claims, especially since it's been really hot and humid in NYC for the past week or two! I'm glad I was able to get such a good deal on this because it should last a while.

Victoria's Secret Beauty Rush Shiny Kiss Flavored Lip Gloss: Superjuicy
This is a gorgeous berry-purple gloss-- reminds me a lot of the Pantone color of the year, radiant orchid.

Victoria's Secret Beauty Rush Pout Lip Stain: Forever Yours and Stay Awhile
Forever Yours is a lovely pinky red-- I want to describe it as a "candy apple" color, but a bit softer and more pink. Stay Awhile is a pretty pinky-peachy-nude color (worst description ever?).

Victoria's Secret Beauty Rush Glossy Tint Lip Sheen: Boudoir Pink
This is a pinky-nude lip crayon. I'm typically much more of a bright lip kind of girl, but I'm trying to branch out a little bit and try out some more subdued lip colors.

These products were on sale for buy 2, get 2 free so the price for all four of them was $20.

Victoria's Secret Color Flash Eye Shadow: Dark Side

This product was also on sale for 75% off. The description of this product on the website is really interesting so I thought I'd share: "Flash your sexy side with VS Makeup Color Flash Eye Shadow. Lush, pure pigments layer with multidimensional sparkle to create a brilliant flash of color. Silky formula catches light for intensely luminous eyes, and a look that is high glimmer, pure glamour." Pretty intriguing, right? Dark side is a gorgeous color that's hard to categorize. In indirect light, the color is almost a blackish brown, but it has this gorgeous reddish-gold shimmer running throughout it that, in the light, completely transforms the color. I tried to catch the glitter in the photo, but I assure you that it's even more beautiful in person.

Victoria's Secret Shimmer Eye Shadow: Dusk

This definitely isn't the color I would associate with the name "Dusk", but it's beautiful nonetheless. I'd describe it as a cross between a champagne and a gold color.

I'm really excited to try out these new purchase, especially the makeup products! I'm going to play around with them tomorrow and I'll have a post up with swatches sometime this weekend. I feel like I scored some really great deals (especially with the things that were 75% off) so I'm really pleased with what I got so far. Hopefully these products live up to my expectations!

Did you visit the Victoria's Secret Semi-Annual Sale? What did you get?

(P.S. I'm in the process of re-doing this blog's theme! I started with the watermarks featured in these photos. I'm hoping to be done sometime next week.)

Thursday, June 19, 2014

#VSSportBra: An influenster experience

I signed up with influenster a few months ago after seeing a few posts about it on instagram. For anyone unfamiliar with influenster, a little blurb from their website states that they are: "a community of trendsetters, social media masterminds, and educated consumers who live to give opnions of products and experiences." I really like trying new products (of all types) and giving my opinion on them so the website seemed like a good fit for me! One of the many things that influester does is offer VoxBoxes, which are boxes filled with complimentary products from various brands. In return for receiving a VoxBox, you review the contents of the box on various forms of social media. At some point, I'd like to make a more complete post about my experiences with influenster and VoxBoxes, but seeing as I've only been a member for a short time I'm going to wait until I have a better feel for the system. But keep checking back if you're interested in learning more!

Anyway, I very recently received my first VoxBox! That alone was exciting enough, but this was a pretty special and amazing box, too: I received the #VSSportBra VoxBox from Victoria's Secret. Prior to receiving the box I filled out a survey or two about my fitness habits. I played soccer for about 10 years and I still like to run when I can so getting fitness related products was really motivating to me. The main product featured in the #VSSportBra box was a Victoria's Secret sports bra.

I've purchased regular bras from Victoria's Secret before (they're one of the few major brands that carries my size!), but I've never thought about buying sports bras there. I may have to change that in the future, because I'm really happy with and excited about the bra I received. In addition to feeling very sturdy and well made, it's very comfortable and supportive. There is some underwire (in case that puts people off-- for me, it was a bonus as it made the bra feel more supportive). Also, the band of the bra is adjustable in the back which I thought was a really nice touch. I've worn a few adjustable sports bras in the past but I found they tended to be less supportive overall so I'm looking forward to trying this one out. Also, I love the color of the bra (although I believe other colors are available)-- it's very "me".

They also included a tape measure for measuring your bra size yourself, which is really funny because the day I received this box I was thinking about purchasing a tape measure to figure out my size for another clothing purchase! I love little coincidences like that. I really appreciate the water bottle, too, because I'm always trying to get myself to drink more water but I don't have a reusable water bottle in my new apartment. I noticed that some of the other boxes included socks instead of the water bottle, so there was some variability between boxes (which I think is fun).

I jogged around with the bra for a while to test it out. It was comfortable and most importantly, it kept everything in place. Would I ditch all my other sports bras for this one? I'm not sure. I think I'll need to try it out for a bit longer, but I do think that this bra really maximized both support and comfort in a way that some of my other sports bras don't. I think ladies with a bigger chest may really notice a difference between this bra and those from other brands. The addition of the underwire, plus the adjustable band in the back, make this bra really appealing to me and I think will probably appeal to other people who are concerned about support. I will also say that I think that the bra fits true to size, so if you've purchased bras from Victoria's Secret before, you should use your normal size to purchase this sports bra.

Overall my impression of not only influenster, but the Victoria's Secret sports bra are really positive!

Have you purchased or received a Victoria's Secret sports bra? What did you think?

*I am a #VSSportTester but all of the opinions reported here are truthful and my own.

Friday, May 2, 2014

I've never been good at introductory posts-- I prefer to jump right into things-- but I thought I'd say a little about why I started this blog. My interest in photography that began about 4 years ago concurrently renewed my interest in beauty-- something about viewing things through a lens and trying to find beauty in the natural world made me even more interested in finding and enhancing it in human beings! I love researching and trying out new products and in my head I've always made little reviews for new things as I was trying them. I thought I might as well help out anyone who happened to stumble across this blog by putting them down in print. So welcome to my little corner of the web, you beautiful person, you!
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