Sunday, 1 August 2010

New Apartment!

I am officially living in my nyc apartment now! Finally the moving process is over! We still have no living room furniture but the will be dealt with in time. I haven't had a second to blog this weekend between moving in and a visitor, but I did get out and had lots of fun! The visitor and I went to Governors Island which is a short 10 minute (FREE) ferry ride from South Ferry station. The park had great food, ice cream (chocolate covered almond cherry...yum!), live music, and free bikes rentals!

My one beauty indulgence this weekend was a trip to get manicures with my mom before moving out of the house forever (sad!)

Essie Pansy did help to lift my spirits a bit...

Monday, 26 July 2010

The, not that kind!

So I had been thinking about dying my hair (as you've read) and I just was generally bored with it, but the ultimate thought that kept coming back to me was, "I wish I could just wash it and GO!" With this new work schedule that I am getting used to I am tired all the time from waking up early to dry my hair and forget actually going to the gym in the morning because I would never have time to go from a wet head to a dry head before work. Then I heard from a co-worker about the Brazilian Blowout. No harsh chemicals, it takes hardly any time at all, and lasts about 12 weeks. It is basically just a deep conditioning system that leaves your hair totally soft and frizz-free. I was sold. Everyone needs a good deep conditioning now and then, right? The appointment was booked the next day. I went to the salon that was recommended by my office friend. She knew someone who had it done there and I was able to see pictures of her hair before and after. I was amazed at how soft and smooth her hair was!

To really seal the deal for me, I read Nicole Ricci's blog post about how she had gotten it done and LOVED IT. Many other celebs had tried it too and I love their hair. I had to do it.

I got to the salon right on time and was taken to have my hair washed THREE times. They need to make sure that your scalp is totally squeaky clean. Then my stylist meticulously brushed on the conditioning gel through all of my strands, tiny 1/16 of an inch at a time. Then she blow dried my hair as one normally would and finally she flat ironed it to really seal in the product. Finally I was sent home with directions not to wear a ponytail or wash my hair for 24 hours.

I was so nervous to actually wash my hair the next day. The treatment was super expensive (I worked so crazy hard all through college, I deserved to buy myself a grad present, no?) What if the treatment did nothing? I would have wasted all that money!

I shook off my fears and washed my hair with a sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner (to make the treatment last longer). I chose Loreal's sulfate free line because I had already been using it for a long time and I love the scent.

Then it was time to wait.

As my hair slowly dried I was totally shocked. Not only was my hair smooth, but it was straight. Like stick straight. My stylist said that might happen with my hair because, while I do have a LOT of it, the texture is very soft and fine. I could not believe that my hair dried perfectly straight right out of the shower. It was soft, smooth, and frizz-free. I'm still waiting for the catch...Ooooh right, the price.

I will keep you all posted on the results over time. This will cut out hours of time throughout the week and I can actually sleep in!

Sunday, 25 July 2010


I have a few of the Bare Essentials Buxom lip glosses and thought they were alright so I picked up a few new samples with my latest Sephora purchases.

Amber (not pictured) was a nice peachy/red. Wasn't too impressed. Wouldn't buy it.

Dolly (pictured) was, again, just alright. No purchase there either.

These glosses feel a bit like the old school Lip Venoms. I don't like how they make my lips feel super tingly and ridiculously cold. The gloss is also quite sticky.



Isn't it beautiful?

Now I can smell like my all time favorite scent anywhere/anytime.

My official nyc move-in date is now Friday due to strange doctors appointment scheduling on my part due to the hectic work schedule, but once I am in life will calm down! Hopefully I can avoid the Sephora that will be DOWN THE BLOCK from me. I'm just asking for trouble...

Monday, 19 July 2010

LaVanilla Roller Ball!

Exciting news!!!! At least for me :)

My all time favorite fragrance...LaVanilla Coconut Vanilla now comes in a little roller ball dispenser that I can throw in my purse! The only downside of this scent was that it wasn't very portable in a big glass bottle and now it can go with me everywhere!


Friday, 16 July 2010

Put your Money where your Eyes are

If I'm going to buy an expensive product I want to be able to use it all the time. Case in point: NARS' new fall 2010 Collection.

Tzarine Duo Eye Shadow: YES! 32 dollars goes a long way with this guy because I would wear it lightly for work during the day or really play it up and do a smoky eye at night!

Daphne Single Eye Shadow: NO! 23 dollars for something that I may wear a few times only if I could swing it with the place I was going and the outfit I was going to wear.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Two Faced Caribbean in a Compact Bronzing Powder in Sun Bunny

See previous posts for terrible picture explanation.

I think I'm a fan of this. I generally stick to my Laura Geller bronzer for everyday because it's so light that it looks very natural on me, but for when I really want to pump up the intensity of my faux tan I think this would be a great product to have. I own the Bare Essentials "warmth" shade and it's just too dark for me. It makes me look dirty and I don't love the idea of a loose powder bronzer. So my bronzer as of now consists of a very light Laura Geller, a much too dark BE, and a wayyyyy too sparkly Cargo bronzer that I use only if I will be out in a very dark bar/club. I think this product definitely has a place in that collection. Matte, dark, but not dirty or overpowering. Period.

Bvlgari Refreshing Towel

This sample is sort of funny. It was a little moist towelette that was scented. It smelled clean and fresh (I really liked it!) but it also served me another odd purpose. I accidentally used too much hair product and my strands were feeling greasy, clumpy, and generally really gross. I was super frustrated and didn't have time to re-wash it before work. As I was wiping this towelette on the inside of my wrists and on my neck I got inspired. I started wiping down my hair with it- just grabbing chunks of hair with the towel and pulling downwards all over my head. At first it felt a little damp and I was semi-horrified that I had gone to what felt like an extreme, but then my hair quickly dried and TADA! it was no longer greasy/gross. It felt soft, clean, and completely fresh. Gone was that heavy, weighed-down feeling and in its place were my normal locks. Who knew? A moment of frustration actually turned out great! These might actually be worth buying after all. Not only could they help me in a pinch, but I could see myself throwing some of these in my work bag to freshen up between work and happy hour or between a weekend outdoor activity and a dinner. Multi-purpose, smells great, light and clean. Period. After another (I need to stop) purchase (details to come!) I added this as one of my samples again just to make sure that I really liked the scent.

Clinique Acne Solutions Liquid Makeup

Again- bad photo! About 1 week and counting until I am in the nyc apartment and can keep more regular hours!

I have to say, I am sort of a foundation snob. I don't use full coverage foundation ever, but I do cover problem areas for redness when necessary (think chin, around the nose, and certain parts of the forehead). I am typically a Bobbi Brown girl, but this stuff has me interested. The texture is very smooth and thin and therefore blends flawlessly- no streaks or clumps! The test color happened to be my exact perfect shade which surprised me. It was called Fresh Natural. I am always for a product that has salicylic acid in it because why clog your pores with goopy makeup all day when you can cover them with a little sal acid? If I'm going to wash my face with the stuff I certainly have no problem using it as cover up.

Because I don't actually use all over foundation (call me up when I'm 30 and ask me again) I don't know if this product would be a great use of my money, but the great texture and application mixed with the fabulous shade match has me thinking...

Urban Decay Pocket Rocket in Doug

I am horrified. This was the stickiest gloss I have ever tried. The second I brushed it on my lips I quickly wiped it off with a warm wash cloth. There is absolutely nothing else to say about this gloss. Unless UD totally changes their gloss formula I will never purchase a pocket rocket. Two thumbs down. This is unfortunate because the packaging is rather clever and fairly cute. There is just nothing that I detest more in a gloss that pure stickiness, especially with a long walk to work where my hair sticks to my lips with the slightest hint of messy gloss.


The Sephora Delux Brush Set

Sorry for the crappy photo! Once I am in my NYC apartment I won't have to commute home and it will actually be light out when I leave the house/come back home so my pictures will get much better...promise!

Can you believe that this was just 39 dollars?! It comes with a blush brush, foundation brush, and a double sided eyeshadow brush/eyeshadow smudge brush, double sided eyebrow/eyeliner brush, and double sided lip brush. The bristles were so incredibly soft, but are cruelty-free (not real animal hair). I can tell that the brush handles are nice quality wood and they are even labeled so that you know exactly what to use each brush for if you weren't sure.

This was such a deal and I can tell that these will last me a really long time if I care for them properly. Check out my blog on brush care for details!

Michael Kors Very Hollywood

Remember my haul from a few days ago? Well it came! The rosebud salve in a tube was just as good as I imagined it to be and the BadGal is just a replacement so I thought I'd talk about some of my samples. I like that you can get these small samples because it's nice to try before you buy! In this case, it was successful. I really liked how this perfume smells! It's very soft, floraly, and powdery. It feels very girly and pretty. I would wear it to work because it is so subtle.

I am in the market for a new perfume, but my LaVanilla is my daytime and this certainly does not scream sexy/night time to me, so while I do really like it, I don't think I'll purchase a bottle.

To Dye or not to Dye

I've had the same dark brown hair for my entire life and from time to time I get bored of it and think about dying it, but then I always convince myself not to. There are so many reasons! My hair is so dark would a dye really make a difference? Will it damage my already-dry hair? Will the maintenance be too much? Won't I have to go to the salon ten times more then I already do? Won't all of those salon trips cost a lot? What if the color looks bad and I hate it? What color would I even try to dye my dark hair?

I have you have answers? For all those hair dyers out there: Help!

Monday, 12 July 2010


Where have I been? Pretty MIA. Last week was crazy and this weekend I was in Cape Cod visiting friends from school/attending a graduation party! Lots of fun, but now it's back to work.

I did manage to order some things from (oopsies) but I got some great deals!!

Here's what I bought:

An entire (good quality) brush set for 39 dollars!!

Rosebud Salve in a tube (see my post on this)

Benefit BadGal Lash (Also see my post on this)

And for spending just over 50 dollars I got free shipping. Normally you get three free samples when you order online, but their special deal right now is that you get 5 free samples plus a free travel makeup bag! How could I resist?

My sample choices: Michael Kors Very Hollywood Eau de Parfum, Urban Decay Pocket Rocket Lip Gloss in Doug, Too Faced Caribbean In A Compact - Sun Bunny, Clinique Acne Solutions Liquid Makeup, Bvlgari Eau Parfumee Green Tea Refreshing Towel.

That's 9 things for about 52 dollars and no shipping charge! I highly recommend that everyone pop over to while the deals still last.

Monday, 5 July 2010

Sunscreens I Love

I hope you all had a good holiday weekend! I enjoyed the extra day, but it was hot hot hot and it's only getting hotter. The whole ten day forecast where half the days are 100 degrees is not really my idea of fun. This does, however, lead me to the topic of this post!

I am super serious about sunscreen, but I haven't always been. In fact, I used to lay outside as much as possible during the summer time with hardly any sunscreen at all, but I'm older and wiser and now I use sunscreen religiously! If you've read my blog at all you know that I am intense about skincare. I have a very strict regime that I follow to the T and I am very careful about what I put on my face and body. My skin can be temperamental, but when I treat it right it treats me right!

I have tried many sunscreens in the past and have come to find that these two (one for body and one for face) are the all time best!

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Body Mist Sunblock with helioplex and SPF 30 is my go-to for body block. I love that it is really light and doesn't feel greasy, it has a soft/clean scent and it protects like no other! The mist makes for a seriously easy application and it never leaves me streaky. I don't miss a single spot when I use this guy.

For face I only use Coppertone Oil Free Sunscreen Lotion Faces (fragrance free). It is hypoallergenic, it won't clog your pores, and it's oil free. It is also SPF 30 and I also love the non-greasy formula. It bends right in and I never break out from using it.


Friday, 2 July 2010

Happy 4th of July! (in advance)

Greeting from..well...not there. Wah wah wahhhh. That picture is from my trip to Mykonos during my semester spent abroad in Greece. This weekend will involve less sitting and more walking.

I have Monday off, but I am sacrificing a fun long weekend away at the beach to pound the pavement in my NYC apartment search. I don't actually mind because I am so excited about moving in that I just want to speed up the process as much as possible. When contemplating apartments, my roommate and I look at the basics like safety, amenities (laundry, dishwashers, space, renovations), and location. But something that would really sell me on a place? Bathroom cabinet space! The amount of products that I have is no small stash and I need some place to store everything in an organized way. Just throwing things in a bin or basket seriously does not work for me. I need order and neatness when it comes to bottles, pots, tubes, and all of the odds and ends that I keep in my bathroom at home right now.

Wish me luck on the great apartment search of 2010 and have an amazing holiday weekend!

What are your plans for the Fourth? Is anyone going away?

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Bad Gal Update

Remember my post on Benefit's Bad Gal Lash mascara? I really liked the product at the time and after using it for over a month now I can safely say that this is the best mascara...maybe ever. I wear it all day long (for about 12-18 hours) and it never budges. It doesn't smudge. It doesn't lose its lash definition. My lashes just look amazingly long and full all day long without a single clump. It is rare that I do an update post on a product that is, well, still awesome, but I thought it would be helpful to see how this product works long term.

If you are in the market for a mascara this is the only thing you should have on your list!

Monday, 28 June 2010

Rosebud Salve...IN A TUBE!

Buy it online here

My favorite lip balm of all time (ever!) now comes in a tube!! The original Rosebud salve has been in my purse for as long as I have been old enough to actually carry a purse. The only downside of the balm, in my opinion, is that it comes in a pot because it A) gets gross from so many dipped fingers and B) easily melts when left in warm temperatures. The tube would fix both of those problems actually making this an unstoppable lip product.

I haven't been this excited about a product in so long!

Saturday, 26 June 2010



St. Tropez Sunless Tanning Lotion:

There is so much to tell! First of all, I recommend that anyone using this product watch the video tutorial on the St. Tropez web site. If you don't you will miss some really key tips that helped me apply the tanner. Here are the tips that I found most important:

1. They are SERIOUS about using gloves. I tried to use my hands at first and after about 5 seconds had very orange hands that would not come clean when vigorously scrubbed. Use gloves.

2. Put on way more than you think. The video recommends about three pumps just for one leg. This seemed like a lot to me so I used much less and therefore could hardly see my tan the next day. Use more.

3. Buff off excess instead of rub. Against the tutorials advice, I tried to rub the product in instead of smoothing it all over and then buffing it in with a buffing pad afterwards. I didn't have a buffing pad (hence the rubbing) but once I saw that the rubbing was just making a sticky mess I got out an old wash cloth and that worked perfectly for buffing. I'm not sure why it didn't occur to me earlier that their "buffing mit" was really just a wash cloth that fits on your hand. Gently smooth the lotion on in one area (e.g. one leg) and then buff the product out in circular motions. Then you can move on to another area. Buff.

4. A lot comes off in the shower. This kind of relates to tip number 2. The video explains that a lot of product will come off in the shower so you need to use more than you think you might need to actually get a good color. They recommend that you put the product on at night and let it set and then shower off the excess product in the morning after the color has been absolred into the skin. Because I didn't use that much product, I was horrified when I stepped out of the shower without much color. I should have used more for better results. Don't be afraid to apply a lot, but do shower off the excess or it will get all over your clothes/sheets/furniture/etc. the second that you sweat.

5. Leave the gas mask at home. Most self tanning product absolutely wreak. This does not. It smells subtle and lovely. No need to be afraid of stinky fumes here.

6. Get help with your back. I enlisted some help for my back otherwise there was going to be very distinct areas that I could not reach, but remember to smooth out the edges. In other words, make your back meet your front, rub the sides of your body, don't forget that the sides exist, it's not just a front and a get the idea.

7. Wait, then buff some more. I thought that I had buffed everything out really well, but after about an hour I noticed dark spots around my ankles and elbows. Just buff these out with the wash cloth again and they will blend in nicely.

8. Use moisturizer when the video tell you to. The video recommends that you use moisturizer on the back of one hand, add a little bit of product, and rub the backs of your hands together. Then get between your fingers. Use more moisturizer around your wrists to smooth the line between the wrists and the hands.

9. Keep baby wipes handy for areas like finger nails, toe nails, between fingers, and on elbows. This is where you get the dirty, rusty-looking streaks so use the wipes to clean up areas right away so that they don't show up later.

10. Did I mention to use more than you think you need? USE MORE!

I'll take some photos the next time I re-do the process. Because I didn't use enough the color isn't really anything special, but I loved the scent and how clean it looks. The entire process was a little stressful and much more complicated than using my Jergens lotions, but overall I am very happy with the much-anticipated St. Tropez and I can't wait to use it again!

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Where's the St. Tropez?

Well, unfortunately it's in the mail. Sephora no longer carries the brand (what??) but they do still sell it on the web site. One seriously over priced shipped order later I will be a happy camper, but I won't be able to use the product until tomorrow evening after work so I will have to report back on the matter on Monday morning. The Sephora sales woman even noted how strange it was that the store no longer carried the brand on its shelves and she revealed that St. Tropez is the only brand she will use for her sunless tans. That's a good sign! I don't think this product could be recommended by more people. Tomorrow evening can't come soon enough!

Until then, to keep the suspense alive, watch this amazing tutorial on how to apply the product.

In other news, I thought I would share a little hair trick that I have been using to keep my curls under control in the intense summer humidity. Now I know that this goes against lots of advice from various stylists, but it works for me so here it is:

If I just let my curls air dry out of the shower I usually end up with frizzy squiggles all over my head. However, I find that if, after getting out of the shower with clean/conditioned hair, I apply a pea-sized amount of conditioner to my strands I end up with super soft waves that are bouncy and frizz-free. My reasoning? The conditioner weighs down the hair and therefore keeps some of the wacky volume at bay. This is definitely not something that I would recommend to anyone with greasy/flat/limp/fine hair, but it is my saving grace in the summer. After applying the conditioner I comb through my hair and squeeze out any excess water with an old t-shirt. Then I apply a bit of Moroccan Oil for extra smoothness and let it dry.

Try it out and let me know how it goes!

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Coming Soon...

Coming soon...the moment sunless-tanning-summer has been waiting for...ST.TROPEZ Sunless Tanner!!

It should arrive this afternoon, I will apply this evening, and report back tomorrow morning.

Until then, read some of the reviews that have gotten me so excited (they're at the bottom of the page in the link below).

ps- should I be worried about the people that say it can be really messy, dyed their hands, and got all over their clothes and sheets? Hmmm...I suppose for every rave review there will always be some skepticism!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Is it worth it?


Let me preface this by saying that I know that higher priced brands are able to use better quality ingredients in their products so I won't try to compare drugstore brands with the top of the market products, but let's examine regularly priced Sephora brands like Benefit and Tarte with brands like Chanel and the new line of products out from Burberry.

When I saw the new Burberry ads I couldn't help but wonder...why? Why would I be enticed to buy a 24 dollar lip liner? Just for brand recognition? I found the color palette of the collection to be seriously boring and the packing to be nothing special.

Likewise, I don't understand the allure of Chanel makeup. Yes it is prestigious to pull out the double-c'ed compact and powder your nose, but would you really buy something just to be seen with it? I don't find that the shadows and blushes are anything special although I have been known to walk out of a department store with a stripe of every shadow color marching down my hands.

I own one Chanel lip palette and only because my friend knew that I would never ever buy it for myself and she gave it to me as a birthday gift. I love the product, but it was way too expensive to justify purchasing for myself.

What do you guys think? Are designer products really worth the intense price tag? Would you try Burberry's new collection?

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Jergens Natural Glow Daily Foaming Moisturizer

Oprah likes it...what can go wrong?

Jergens Natural Glow Daily Foaming Moisturizer:

The self tanning summer continues. I think that I am now officially the proud owner of the entire Jergens sunless tanning line. Remember my post about the Jergens express moisturizer that turned me orange and streaky? And how I knew I should have tried this foaming moisturizer that comes highly recommended? Well, here it is!

First impressions: It says that it dries instantly and it is not lying! This stuff came out of the can like mousse and dried the second I applied it. I was a bit panicked because I have zero time to actually blend it all in before it was dry, but when I woke up the next morning I only had two streaks on my left arm. Not bad, right? They were easy to blend away with a damp washcloth so it was no big deal. I liked that it did not smell in the slightest and wasn't messy (although I wish there was more time to blend!!). It would be great if you wanted to apply it in the morning before work or school and didn't have time to wait around.

I've only used this for one full weekend so I will have a better idea of how it works over the long term in the next few weeks. To be continued!

Wednesday, 16 June 2010



Pat McGrath is taking her skills to yet another venture. She's already the Global Creative Design Director for CoverGirl and every product that she touches in that brand turns directly to gold. Hello, LashBlast! So I'm pretty excited about her collaboration with LeSportsac. Typically if you said LeSportsac I would say 8th grade, neon green/pink, and nylon, but McGrath's designs are classic and chic. The Pat retails for 28 dollars and is small and black with a yellow zipper. Good for storing a little amount of makeup, maybe for a short trip. The Page retails for 62 dollars and is a much larger version of The Pat. It is the same black bag/yellow zipper style and looks like it could carry quite a bit of makeup/tools.

I want one. Who am I kidding? I want both.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Benefit Sugarbomb Blush

Benefit Sugarbomb Blush:

Yum! This blush is perfect for summer. It is a mix of four different shades (peach, pink, coral and plumb) that combine to be one perfect golden peachy pink color. It smells like a fruit pie and it has just the right amount of shimmer without being at all glittery.

This will be my go-to blush all summer long!

Benefit Lip Gloss in Zone Out

Benefit Lip Gloss in Zone Out:


I am in love with this product. I realize that my lip product accumulation has gotten a bit out of hand in the past few years so I rarely buy glosses unless they are absolutely fabulous. That should tell you a tiny bit about how amazing this gloss really is. It can only be described as a peachy golden champagne color with lots of sparkle. It makes my lips look dewy and adds just the right about of shine. It's not very sticky and it actually feels super moisturizing on my lips. I am in love! I have to keep my hands to myself now and not buy another one of these in a different color...maybe.

Benefit Hello Flawless Powder Foundation

Benefit Hello Flawless Powder Foundation:

I went to Bloomingdales in the city this weekend and found myself at the Benefit suite. I purchased a few things (posts to come) but got this sample for free. I am a huge believer in the no foundation look. I love all things natural and clean and hate the thought of cakey liquid foundation clogging my pores all day long. Enter Hello Flawless. It's a full coverage powder that is incredibly light and goes on completely smooth with very little blending. I looked more awake with a cheery glow in seconds! With SPF 15, what's there to complain about?

One this is for sure, this little sample is about to become a full sized product!

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

What I'm Craving Right Now


What I'm Craving Right Now:

NARS Pure Sheer Lip Treatment- A moisturizing stick of sheer color...what more could you ask for in a summertime product? Will I really get it? My box of lip products says no, but my credit card says yes!

St. Tropez Gradual Tan for Body- If you've been readings my sunless summer posts then you know I'm on the hunt for a great sunless tanner. This one is recommended by more magazines than I can count.

Living Proof Straight Making Kit
- Because nothing works as well as this...NOTHING.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Jergens Natural Glow Express Body Moisturizer

Jergens Natural Glow Express Body Moisturizer:

I want to be quick to blame the people over at Jergens for this product, but if I'm being honest it's my own fault. I knew that the regular Jergens moisturizer comes highly recommended, but with a beach party this past weekend I just had to get my ghostly pale skin tan a bit quicker than the regular lotion allowed. This express version promises that your skin with be three shades darker within three days of the first use. Darker is a bit misleading. It should say three shades more orange with plenty of streaking, buuuuut again, my impatience needs to take some of the blame here. I admit that I could have blended better and spent more time rubbing in the product. It is also hard because it is a white lotion so it is difficult to tell where it needs to be further blended.

Overall, I would say if you have the time, go with the original version of this lotion and you are sure to be glowing, but if you are in a hurry like I was...blend blend blend!

Jergens Natural Glow Healthy Complexion Daily Facial Moisturizer

Jergens Natural Glow Healthy Complexion Daily Facial Moisturizer:

And so the sunless tanning begins...

I figured I would start off with my face and go light. This moisturizer really does slowly build up a great color in a natural/gradual way. No pale one day and orange the next! I love that it is oil-free and doesn't feel greasy at all. It rubs in and your face feels smooth and dry. There are no streaks or unnatural lines on my face. So far I haven't broken out from it (although I will keep you posted just in case) and it doesn't smell like anything.

I am seriously impressed with the quality of this product and for less than 10 bucks at CVS I say that this beats the 30 dollar Clarins face tanner that I did NOT purchase.

Overall, a very good start to the sunless tanning experience.




I officially want to cut off both of my legs. I realize how drastic that sounds, but have you ever had 36...i repeat 36...big bites just on your legs alone? These bites range in size from rather small to golf ball sized lumps. I went away this weekend for a graduation party that was outside at a lake. 24 hours of outside fun later (including sleeping outside) I ended up looking like a creature from the black lagoon. There is no way to cover this up so it is officially impossible for me to wear anything other than pants to work this week so that no one mistakenly thinks that I have the bubonic plague, or adult chicken pox, or some type of lethal skin disease. Nothing helps the itching either. Cortisone cream? Nope. Some spray that my former boy scout father recommended? Nope. My next plan of action is just to take a large quantity of Benadryl and hopefully sleep.

Wish me luck...

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

LaVanilla...A Love Affair Continues

LaVanilla...A Love Affair Continues:

Remember my love affair with LaVanilla that started with a candle and grew to a favorite fragrance? Well, I just had to buy my second bottle of LaVanilla Vanilla Coconut perfume. I am typically a switcher when it comes to fragrance. I like Marc Jacobs for evening, Nanette Lepore for daytime, and Miss Dior for anytime, but once I got hooked on LaVanilla I haven't strayed from this intoxicating scent.

This was my go-to scent for my entire senior year of college and I think there is definitely a fragrance-affiliation going on here. Do you ever associate good feelings with the scent you wore? My college bf loved how this smelled on me and how, because I wore it everyday, my room smelled just like it as well.

While my life is in overdrive (just graduated, next day started my very first real-person job, I need to find a NYC apartment, I miss my friends/bf from school) I find myself spritzing an extra mist of this perfume to slow myself down for just a second and remember my last year of carefree college and all that it meant to me.

Sunless Tanning Update


Sunless Tanner Update:

I went to Bloomingdales this weekend with the intention of finally buying that Clarins Sunless Tanner that I have been coveting to start of my sunless tanning summer, but when I got to the counter I realized that the face tanner, while being non-comedogenic, was not oil-free! I am extremely careful about what I put on my face and oil is just not one of those things, especially in the muggy/hot/sticky summer months in NYC. The sales lady did not like the fact that I was not intending to purchase her oil-filled tanner and tried to persuade me to buy it anyway, stating that she uses it herself and never breaks out!

There were two things wrong with that statement. 1) The sales lady had visible acne and 2) The sales lady was as pale as a ghost. Even if the tanner did not cause her acne, she was either lying about using it because she was so pale or she really did use it and it does not work at all. In either case, she was probably the worst sales person for me. I am way too skeptical to take what is told to me at a beauty counter at face value.

Now that Clarins is out for the face I am thinking that I will ease myself into the self tanning process with a cheap-o line of tanners that are also the most widely recommended drugstore pick by beauty editors...the Jergens line. I have to try them out for a few days to be able to report back on my findings so keep an eye out for that post in the near future.

Birthday Girl!

I'm a Birthday Girl!

Today I am 22 years old.

I used to always ask for a Sephora gift card on my birthday, because running around that store without spending my own money is like a kid in a candy store, but much MUCH better! This year I tired to be more practical and asked for a Sonicare toothbrush, because they really clean your teeth and they are way too expensive for me to buy for myself. Boring, no? I did, however, get lots of checks for my graduation so after I buy new clothes for work and furnish my new (future) apartment maybe I'll have some left over to have my own little mini Sephora spree.

Until then, I'll consider this my initiation into the "real world" and continue to troll like it's my mission in life.

Plus I asked for a new bag for my graduation present and will get one as soon as I have a second to go shopping. I am a loyal fan of Marc Jacobs in the bag department, but I am searching far and wide. My last bag was my high school graduation present so don't think this opportunity comes around too often. I have to make an informed decision! What's your favorite designer for bags? Also, just out of curiosity, what do you call them? Bag? Purse? Handbag?

Another Weekend Away

Another Weekend Away:

I had yet another two days away this past weekend. I had to fly to Michigan for my cousin's wedding. It was great to see my extended family and weddings are always nice, but I just wish I had one second to just breathe! Since graduating and starting work I haven't had a weekend off. This coming weekend I will be going to Massachusetts to attend a graduation party. The next few weekends after that will be dedicated to graduation parties and apartment hunting. If I had one wish right now it would be to have just one single day where I had absolutely nothing to do and I could just sit at home in the sun and relax!

I've decided that because I don't have a day of relaxation anywhere in sight I will find ways to beautify my tired-looking face and relax in 10 minutes or less. Here's what I have come up with so far:

1) Do a face mask before bed. Queen Helene is my favorite.

2) Do an under eye mask. I've never tried this before, but I've heard good things.

3) Do an invigorating scrub. I can buy one, make one from scratch, or just add baking soda to my face wash to make it grainy.

4) Take a quick bath. I can finally use more of my LUSH bath products that my sister got me for the holidays.

5) Eat a piece of chocolate cake and not feel guilty about it. Not sure what this would do to help me look less of a tired mess, but it would definitely be a happy 10 minutes!

What do you do to de-stress when you are short on time?

Sunday, 23 May 2010

A Birthday Gift from Sephora

It's that time of year again (for me) where Sephora doles out a birthday gift to their beauty insiders around their birthdays. It happens to be a few weeks away from mine (June 2nd) so when I went in recently they stowed upon me their "Smokey Eye Kit." I honestly can not tell you what this kit had to do with smokey eyes. Enclosed was a white shimmery eyeshadow that I am guessing is their version of a highlight. Next came a tiny eyeliner in a color that can only be described as teal. Not a bad color, don't get me wrong, but what does it have to do with a smokey eye? Finally there was a mini mascara that was fine, but not noteworthy.

All I can say is...I'm glad it was free, happy future birthday to me!

Anastasia Brow Gel

Anastasia Brow Gel:

Obviously the color debacle detailed in my previous post does not apply to a clear brow gel, so I stayed true to the Anastasia brand for this gel that I purchased as part of my sister's 25th birthday gift. She's been looking for a good gel and Anastasia remains the best in the business for brows (despite their complete lack of color selections for the dark-haired).

I'll let you know if she adores it as much as I hope she does!

Anastasia Brow Pencil In Brunette

Anastasia Brow Pencil In Brunette:

Let me preface this post by saying that this is my very first brow pencil...and for good reason. I was born with crazy-big Brooke Shields-esq brows that I have slowly whittled down over the years to fit in nicely with the small features of my face. They are super dark and still a good size and shape. Getting a brow pencil never even occurred to me before the great brow crisis of May 22nd 2010.

I've always gone to the same brow waxer. For years I have entrusted her with my brows and she has not let me down. But at my last appointment I walked out with two very different brows. One fairly normal one, and one lopsided, very small, over-waxed, over-plucked eyebrow. I was horrified. There was no turning back. I had to just move forward and do the best I could. Of course this was really much more noticeable to me than anyone else (so says my very nice family and friends) but it bothers me none-the-less.

I have been hearing about Anastasia's brand and the wonders it works for brows so I went straight to Sephora to pick up a pencil. I have to say that the quality of the pencil and brow brush are excellent. However, I have very dark, almost black, eyebrows and the darkest color they had was dark brown or "Brunette" and to me this color was not only lighter than my actual brow shade, but it looked a bit orange to me as well. I am going to do the best that I can with it because for 22 dollars you bet I am not throwing this baby out! But I do recommend for the dark-haired readers to avoid Anastasia and move on to a brand with a better color selection.

For now, I just keep saying...brows grow back...brows grow back...brows grow back.

Benefit Bad Gal Lash Mascara

Benefit Bad Gal Lash Mascara:

I am finally a proud owner of this Benefit mascara. I've heard fabulous things about it for too long and I just needed to try it out for myself. When I was in line at Sephora this weekend and saw a cheap little mini version of the traditional tube I knew it was fate.

I have to admit, I think this mascara really does live up to the hype. It created long, full coats over my lashes without a single clump! I'm not sure how long this little tube will last, but I think it's safe to say that I'm a Bad Gal convert.

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Lack of Posts this Week!

Lack of Posts this Week!

Sorry for the lack of posts this week. I graduated from college on Saturday and started a full time job on Monday! I suppose I will have slightly less time to blog working full time with a fairly long commute until I get an apartment, but I will do my best to keep up! Also, in my new position I will be around some fabulously fashionable ladies so I know I will be inspired to come up with new beauty topics and think of more products that I want...I mean the near future.

Hopefully by this weekend I will be settled in and ready to continue posting regularly!

I'll leave you with this thought:

Have you ever tried a sunless tanner that you truly liked? I mean that did not turn you orange, leave streaks, produce uneven spots, or generally look fake? With summer around the corner I am preparing for a full-out sunless tanner escapade. I think I will try Clarins first because it is always recommended and then move on to St. Tropaz after that. Details to come!

Sunday, 9 May 2010

MoroccanOil Restorative Hair Mask


MoroccanOil Restorative Hair Mask:

New obsession alert!! This mask has the power to change hair. Literally. My super long hair is in dire need of a good cut, but I still have a few days until I am graduated from school and back near my stylist. I got this mask on the recommendation of a few friends and I cannot get enough! It turned my frizzy, semi-fried, split end mess of a head of hair into glossy/silky/shiny strands. It also has the classic MoroccanOil scent which I have described in depth in my MoroccanOil rave post. I love this product!! The only downside is that it is pretty expensive. I got the 8.5 oz tub for 40 dollars, but I am kicking myself because I see here that it is 26 dollars on Amazon! Get it there...that's a great deal!

Stores I LOVE


Stores I LOVE:

Sephora (obviously!): I could spend hours in here. It's almost like I want everything so much that I usually walk out with nothing because I honestly can't choose between all of the pots, pencils, creams, powders and other wonderful concoctions!

Anthropologie: Cute dresses, cute accessories, and super cute home goods. What's not to love?

Bloomingdales: They have the absolute best selection of jeans plus great makeup counters. A combination of two of my obsessions! I could get lost in here all day. Added bonus? Forty Carrots! They have great food and amazing frozen yogurt! I like getting shredded coconut and fruit on the side. YUM!

Wink: Rather small, but filled with lots of treasures! I got ballet flats there that look just like ballet slippers that I get compliments on every single time I wear them. I also found my black leather bangle with the gold clasp here. Classic!

Madewell: The place to go for super skinny stove pipe jeans and hipster-esq tees. Also a great place for extra light scarves that work well for spring and summer.

A store that I am not a fan of...the MAC stores. I don't like how the stores are set up. All of the products are hidden away in drawers and cabinets so you have to get a sales person to help you every single time you need to pick up a new item. I am a pretty independent shopper and don't like that sort of forced sales person contact.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

I Need Your Advice!

I Need Your Advice!

So I graduate college in a couple of days. WHAT?!?! Time flies!

I picked up my traditional black cap and gown and now I need to figure out how to wear my hair. What goes with a cap? Obviously I need to wear it down. I don't want to look like a boy up there with my hair hidden under my cap! But it is going to be pretty hot. Who thought up the idea of having black graduation gowns while everyone sits outside in the sun for hours?

I'm thinking of doing "the Lauren Conrad" aka my hair straight with some soft waves, parted slightly to the side, with a front french braid. I know the braid won't show with the cap, but it will keep the front pieces of my hair away from my face for pictures, right?

Does anyone have any better ideas or wants to share their graduation do? I'd love to hear it!

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Mothers Day Gift Ideas

My sister, my mom, and me!

Mothers Day Gift Ideas:

As Mothers Day rapidly approaches I thought I'd share some gift ideas. Let me start by saying that my mom is a preschool teacher and teachers get more bath and body products than anyone on the planet. I guess they are the go-to gift for women teachers because they are easy to find and generally loved by all. This does, however, make for a tricky Mothers Day for my sister and I because we can never go the bath salt/body lotion/scented candle route.

I am a big believer in personalizing gifts, so it does depend a lot on the mother in question, but here are some things that I am brainstorming for my amazing mom:

MoroccanOil hair products: I think that got my frizzy hair gene from my mom so I may just have to introduce her to the hair care line that changed my locks forever.

CoverGirl Outlast Lip Stains: My mom has no time to re-apply lip colors when she's running after kiddies all day and these stains stay in place like no others! They come in tons of colors and I'm sure that their marker-like applicators would be very cool at the preschool (although we wouldn't want to give the kids any ideas!)

Narciso Rodriguez for Her: Honey flower plus tactile wood plus amber equals a musky floral fragrance that goes from day to night! My mom loves this scent and she may be due for a re-fill soon.

My beauty unrelated pick? BANANAGRAMS! My mom loves Scrabble and this is sort of like Scrabble meets dominoes. The banana-shaped pouch comes with letter tiles. Each person gets 21 tiles. You have to use all your letters to make words, but they all have to be connected to each other (like Scrabble without the board) and the first person to use all their tiles wins. You can put back a tile, but then have to take three more in its place. All the tiles are face-down which means its a surprise which letters you end up with; so (as my mom says in her preschool class) you get what you get and you don't get upset! I think she would love it and its something that we could do together.

Sweat Week Day 3

Sweat Week Day 3:

ONE more day until it will be cool enough to officially call an end to sweat week!

TWO things never to do when it is hot out: Laundry in a blazing hot laundromat and baking in an oven in a blazing hot kitchen. These are also two things that I had to do this week. Laundry so that I had clean clothes and baking as a thank you to my senior thesis advisory team.

THREE products that I am thankful for in the heat:

1) Queen Helene Mint Julep Mud Mask: Minty and refreshing! It feels like icicles on my face and sucks the greasy grime out of my pores.

2) Scope Outlast Mouth Wash: Again with the minty and refreshing! Can you see a theme to the products that I am using this week? At least my mouth can feel cool!

3) Maybelline Great Lash Waterproof Mascara: My face may be sweating, but my eye makeup is melt-proof! No runny black streaks here.

Sweat Week Continues!

My friend and I in an infinity pool in Santorini. Yay for going abroad to Greece! This is exactly where I want to be right now. I remember the water was so cold that it took us days to get our toes in. Speaking of toes....

It's still hot out, although not as hot as it has been (thank goodness!). I thought I'd share a fun-in-the-sun beauty idea. HOT PINK TOES!

My roommate had such an amazing hot pink color on her toes that I had to borrow it and try it out myself. It is Milani's Electric Pink and it looks amazing on just about everyone. It also dries in about two seconds which is a plus for toes on the go!

Heat Wave: Melting Makeup

Me and two friends laying on our guy-friend's roof. Don't worry; major sunscreen was involved!

Heat Wave- Melting Makeup:

I don't know about you, but I'm sweating. It was about 94 degrees today and my room on the second floor of our house was about 104 degrees. Going outside actually felt cool compared to my room. I have a fan going, but it just seems to be blowing around burning hot air.

Clearly in this heat I am not looking my best. My face is bright red, I am all sweaty, and I can almost feel my pores getting slowly clogged with excess oil. Attractive!

Here are some tips and tricks that I have gathered up to combat the blazing heat blues:

1) Wash your face with a tingly cleanser. My Neutrogena Pink Grapefruit face wash smells refreshing and feels super-tingly. My face can go from greasy to squeaky clean in no time; plus it has salicylic acid to unclog pores! Follow up with a toner (I love Neutrogena's Oil-Free Stress Control Triple Action Toner) for that extra clean feeling.

2) Try an oil-free moisturizer. I use Neutrogena (can you tell that I love this brand?) Oil-Free Moisturizer for Combination Skin.

Use a mattifying shine control product. Clinique's Pore Minimizer keeps my face dry even when it feels like I am melting into a puddle on my floor.

3) Use mattifying makeup. I love my Maybelline Dream Matte Powder for staying shine-free and keeping the heat-induced redness at bay.

4) Rock the ballerina bun. My hair can get seriously frizzy in heat like this so post-shower I put in a little leave-in conditioner and then brush my hair up as if I were going to put it into a ponytail. Once I have it gathered high on my head, I twist the hair and wrap it into a bun and secure it with an elastic. Any loose pieces can be tucked in with bobby pins. When I take my hair down tomorrow it is smooth and soft! In the mean time, I get to look like I actually know how to do a pirouette.

5) If all else fails, whip out the ice cream! I couldn't resist going out today and buying Neapolitan frozen yogurt plus my favorite toppings: walnuts and shredded coconut! There's nothing like a cone to cool me down!

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Loreal Ever Strong Sulfate-Free Hydrating Conditioner

Loreal Ever Strong Sulfate-Free Hydrating Conditioner:

Harsh sulfates can damage and dry out hair so a sulfate-free hair care system by a well-known brand seems like a recipe for success. I have to say that I have been using this conditioner for about two weeks now and I really do think that my hair is softer and less frizzy, however, that is not why I love this product.

I love this product FOR THE SCENT!!! It smells like mint and men. Let me explain. The first scent that really hits you is a strong minty smell that isn't too common in hair products, but really makes me feel awake and refreshed in the shower. The next level of scent is something along the lines of hot guys wearing Old Spice while chopping cedar for a fire. It is a musky, woody smell that is seriously sensuous and although it seems like an unlikely combination for a girly hair-care product, it works! The best part is that the scent actually stays with the hair past the shower door! I hate when I use a product and it smells great in the shower, but my hair smells like absolutely nothing post rinse. This product makes my hair smell fantastic long after I leave the shower and dry my strands.

I can't wait to get the shampoo and try the deep conditioner and overnight treatment! I can tell that I have a long future ahead with this hair care line.

Tresemme Fresh Start Dry Shampoo

Tresemme Fresh Start Dry Shampoo:

Hi, my name is Eden, and I am a hair-washingaholic. I will readily admit to being a hair over-washer. For having such thick, wavy/curly hair I know for a fact that I should not be washing my hair every single day, yet I despise the feeling of greasy un-washed locks. I love the feel and smell of freshly washed hair and can't stand skipping even one day, even though I know it would seriously be beneficial to my hair to let go of this washing obsession. I am also not a fan of dry shampoo. To me, it feels like I am putting more gunky product in my already dirty hair, making it feel more grimy than before.

When I first read about this dry shampoo I was not a believer. So of course I had to try it for myself. The formula is much lighter than other dry shampoos that I have tried and it smells a bit like baby powder and hair spray. I wouldn't say that I am a convert...yet. I will take my hair washing addiction one day at a time and see if I can ween myself over to this dry shampoo a few days a week.

Mario Badescu Drying Lotion

Mario Badescu Drying Lotion:

This week is intense. It is my last official week of classes in my entire college career. It is the week of my honors thesis defense. It is the week of graduation prep and the beginning of final exam studying. It is worrying about the future and stressing about how to let go of the past. It is about missing friends before we're gone and thinking about how I am going to afford New York City rent! This is the week of the zit from hell.

There is absolutely nothing in the world like this drying lotion. The ingredient list reads like a who's who of the zit fighting super army. Salicylic acid unclogs pores, sulfur kills soaks up oil and bacteria, calamine reduces redness, camphor soothes. For every tough-guy acne fighting ingredient there seems to be a gentle calming one to balance out the solution.

When I feel a bad zit coming on I fight the urge to panic. What is worse for acne than stress, right? I just dab a spot of this solution on the area with a q-tip before bed and try to relax. The pink spots remind me of when I was little with chicken pox and was covered in pink calamine lotion spots from head to toe. Warning: you will look like a spotty nerd. Definitely use this right before you hit the hay.

This treatment works best when I apply it the second I feel a zit coming on and has even stopped zits from surfacing if I use it early enough. But if I don't catch the zit in time, this works wonders at lessening the face time (literally) that my zit gets with me. I have never and will boldly say will never use a better spot treatment.

So regardless of the stress of the week, I am maintaining fairly blemish-free skin. Walking down the aisle at graduation to get my diploma with a huge spot on my face is simply not an option. I will hold tight to this treatment until I am safely relieved of my cap and gown. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Dial Antibacterial Body Wash in Lavender and Twilight Jasmine

Dial Antibacterial Body Wash in Lavender and Twilight Jasmine:

I have always used this body wash. I can't remember a time before this was in my shower. It is my absolute favorite body wash of all time. It smells fabulous and gets me incredibly clean. When I get out of the shower I get about 4 or 5 comments on how awesome I smell. My cousin has asked me to buy this for her when she can't find it near her house in the city. It's that good.

So when I arrived at the store to pick up a new bottle I was mometarily terrified to see that they had changed the bottle. The first thing I noticed was that this bottle has about 8 more fluid ounces than the other. Why the increase I wondered? Even more worrisome, would the formula be different too?!?

After about a week of showering I can calmly say that this still feels and smells the same. There is even a bonus! The formula is MUCH more concentrated than in the old version so i can use way less in the shower. More liquid and more concentration?? I won't have to buy these half as often as I used to! I'm not sure what caused the people over at Dial to make the change, but I am seriously glad that they did!

Have you ever had a formula change happen to one of your favorite products?

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Organix Nourishing Coconut Milk Shampoo

Organix Nourishing Coconut Milk Shampoo:

I have used the conditioner version of this shampoo before and it works just fine. Nothing special. But I was almost out of shampoo and needed another bottle so I bought this just because I love the scent. It doesn't really do anything amazing for my hair and the scent does not really linger much past the shower. I think the whole buy-for-smell idea got the better of me. I really should have gone for a sulfate-free shampoo because my hair has felt very dry lately. I used to use one that worked so well but was 20 dollars a bottle. Not on this soon-to-be college grad's budget!

Have you ever bought something just because you love the way that it smells?

Another Traveling Weekend

Me and my friend from school plus our BC friends en route to Meteora, Greece wearing the sweatshirts we got in Prague. Woo abroad friends!

Another Traveling Weekend:

I went on another little mini trip this past weekend. This time to Boston! My friend and I went to see our good friends from our trip abroad that go to BC and we watched the Boston Marathon together! For some reason, in Massachusetts only, there is a holiday on the Monday of the Boston Marathon called Patriots Day and it is a state-wide day that no one has school and everyone patriots? Very New England of them. The New England Patriots, anyone?

On one trip I messed up the makeup packing, on the most recent I fudged the hair care combo, and so I was nervous about keeping it all together this time, but I was successful! No more mess-ups! I was totally prepared for the night and day.

I guess third time's a charm, right?

A Mustache Surprise (No, not on me!)

Check out this site for a little mustache appreciation...I had to be bipartisan, right?

A Mustache Surprise (No, not on me!):

So my bf had been growing out his facial hair for about a month and I kept ragging on him to shave. He looks cute with a little bit of scruff but the potential for a full on beard was getting way too high. He kept saying he would and the other day he told me he was coming over with a surprise. I assumed that he finally shaved and was super relieved!

In walks....

A mustache! As a joke he had shaved off all of his facial hair except above his lip so that he was left with a very legitimate mustache. I was, at first, horrified. Who was this 1980's porn actor/pedophile/serial killer entering my room?? Then I laughed for about 15 minutes. Then I desperately wanted him to shave it. Right then and there. He convinced me that he should keep it until Saturday because he wanted his co-workers to get a look at it during his Friday night shift, but that was a huge stretch.

I don't mean to rag on the stache, but I think there is a time and a place for a mustache. The face of a 22 year old college student is definitely not that. After much debate (he grew attached to the stache that we affectionately named pistachio) he finally shaved it!

What do you think of a stache? Can anyone other than Tom Selleck pull it off?