Saturday, February 27, 2010

February Favorites:Part II-Beauty Edition

Here is the second part of my favorites for the month of February. I found it hard to narrow down the beauty products (in general and in this post..hehe), so I think a few things will spill over into March.

They are:

Estee Lauder Bronzing Blush-From their "Bronze Goddess" collection for summer. So beautiful when swirled together. I use it on top of any blush for a warm, defined glow.(it is the zebra like blush on the far left)

Urban Decay Razor Sharp Finishing Powder-gives an airbrushed finish on my skin and doesn't break me out

Nars Exhbit A Blush-looks So scary in the pan, but gives a beautiful, natural flush on the skin. Just use very lightly! 

Mac Scene Eyeshadow-the best lid color for a smokey eye. Makes my eyes look super blue.

Benefit Skinny Jeans Creaseless Cream Shadow-A contributer to the "best smokey eyes ever" as mentioned above. Underneath Mac's "scene" or any smokey shade it makes it all that more dramatic and gorgeous. You can pry this out of my cold, dead hands before I would do a smokey eye without it. 

Urban Decay Lip Primer Potion-For those that have lined, full or just look for smoother lips, this is great. It makes the product on top of it last marginally longer, but gives the most perfect canvas for lipcolor (smooth and gorgeous), that sometimes I wear it alone! 

Urban Decay Primer Potion in Eden-Best primer potion yet. Love how it makes my lids look flawless. 

Korres Bronzer in 01- A light, natural color that is slightly dewy looking (no harcore shimmer or anything) on the skin as opposed to a flat bronzer, and is just beautiful on fairer skins like mine. 

Mac Lip Erase-an HG for my pigmented lips. Its a sheer balm that doesn't dry (who hasn't tried concealer) tones down the pigment of the lips to make your lippies look more true. 

Some close-ups of a few products...

Benefit Skinny Jeans Creaseless Cream Eyeshadow

Mac Lip Erase (a pro product, and goes on like a sheer balm)

Mac Scene Eyeshadow

Korres Bronzer in 01

Nars Exhibit A Blush

Urban Decay Ultra Sharp Finishing Powder

Estee Lauder Bronzing Blush

Here is to a fabulous March everyone! xoxo

Friday, February 26, 2010

Suggestions For a Contest Prize

So my blog is little over a month old, and I have really enjoyed this so much more than I ever thought I would. I thought my lovely mother and I would be the only two reading this, and have been so happy that a few people have found me (I still can't find me online..haha) and have read my blog, despite the fact that its new and a work in progress.  Here is serene picture of the Ritz in Arizona to get you in a relaxed place and thinking.... will get warm soon in the Northeast, right?

I wanted to have a contest when I reach around 50-75 subscribers (I hope that isn't forever!).  It would be open to anyone that is a follower in any country, since I know I have some beautiful people reading outside the U.S. too.  Just wanted to know if anyone has a suggestion or request for a prize they would like to win.  I was thinking a NARS blush, since I have a post of my NARS blush collection coming up. Everyone loves blush, right!? Perhaps those lovely followers outside the U.S. would want something found here they can't get elsewhere? I could have two prizes...

Anyway, if you have any ideas, or want to suggest something, feel free! I'm sitting here waiting for your ideas..hehe

If you don't have any suggestions or don't want to write anything, no biggie, I always find something fabulous to buy : )

Happy Friday everyone!


Thursday, February 25, 2010

February Favorites:Part I-Fashion Edition

I love reading and watching everyone's monthly favorites on blogs and youtube, so I decided that I was going to do one of my own. It is in two parts, the first one being fashion and the second is beauty.

Some of these things are often just perennial favorites and would show up in a favorites post every month, but I will try and include some unique things each month that I am particularly excited about. Hope everyone had a good February!

The two handbags I have worn the most this month are both by Louis Vuitton and in the Speedy 30 shape and size:

*Louis Vuitton Damier Azur Speedy 30-I found this an unexpected favorite this month, as I usually only use this cream and blue bag in the summer. But I found it looked chic and fresh with all the very dark skinny jeans and navy that I wore this month (and all winter), and added a little pop of lightness to those outfits. Very cute. 

*Louis Vuitton Epi Black Speedy 30-a staple and most used purse this winter for me. It goes with everything and the leather is beautiful! 

*Tory Burch Reva Flats-these are an all-time fav and I have them in several colors. I love them. They are comfy and go with everything. These are a snakeskin print grey color that looked lovely with charcoal and navy this month. I love my Reva's! 

*Cartier Watch-makes everything look better. I love this every month!

*Juicy Couture Down Dog Couture Yoga Jacket-I am loving the new line of yoga-wear by Juicy entitled "Down Dog Couture." This is a simple jacket in light sweatshirt material with the signature "J" zipper pull. I love how much stretch is in the fabric, it makes it *so* comfy, and the longer length is wonderful when paired with yoga pants or leggings. I have it in black and grey and hope they come out with more colors soon! 

Not the best on the hanger..but it is super cute in real life! 

And finally my last favorite, which wouldn't fit in the last picture. Most likely the most worn item of the month for me. 

My Burberry rain boots! These have been a complete savior for the slushy-grossness that is Northeastern U.S. streets this month. I recently got a pair of plain black Hunter ones, but have not gotten to wear them. A review is in the future for those. Does anyone have any? Do you like them?

What are your February favorites?!


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

My View:Bare Escentuals Buxom Balm

I have never been a die-hard fan of Bare Escentuals, I think the fact that the foundations so didn't work for me is the reason I steer clear or am uninterested in the brand in general. I have not tried the "Buxom" line of lipglosses, mascara and liner until I picked up the newest incarnations of the line-the balm and liner (review on liner to come) recently. And I must say, I have been pleased with the results.

I like the balm a lot. The container is bulky, cheap and plastic to me, although I think the balm inside is lovely. I am usually not one to love swiping my finger in a balm, but I would make this one an exception. It is very hydrating and gives a beautiful shine and finish to the lips that I see as a middle ground between a hugely shiny gloss and a more matte or flat lipbalm.  It isn't unpleasantly sticky, but still seems to stay on the lip for a good period of time. It seems like the perfect daytime lip product to me. Not too much, but still a pretty healthy look.

I do not however, buy that the balm plumps your lips. My lips are very full to begin with, so I guess I am not the best subject since I don't want my lips plumped, but I see most products that claim to be "lip plumpers" to be utter bull. They either contain an irritant (like cinnamon oil ) that temporarily swells the lips sometimes, or they provide a hydrated, shiny appearance to the lip, which makes anyones lips stand out. It doesn't mean it makes the lips "fuller", I think you gotta get in injection for that (..don't get me started on how unnatural those usually thanks!)

This one isn't tingly and doesn't have that irritant, so I see the hydrating and glossy appearance to perhaps make the lips more prominent, but I don't see them being any fuller. It comes in several cute colors and I have it in "copacabana." This is a very sheer (they all are) nude beige color, that looks basically natural and clear on my pigmented lips. There is also a gorgeous bright pink (Waikiki), a sheer violet, and a few berry/red colors. They all look great, and the pink and violet ones are definitely on my list for spring. I like the pretty natural finish and the fact that it is so hydrating, so overall I have been really pleased with the product so far. I also like that the interior of the container has a little mirror in it : )

 I also think right now they are available only in Sephora, so go check it out!


Update: Here is what the balm looks like on my lips. Note that I have on MAC's Lip Erase on underneath to make the color more true. I always wear the Lip Erase or Urban Decay's Lip Primer Potion underneath any lip product because my lips are super pigmented and appear bright red alone. This always messes with how colors show up on my lips so I tone them down before I apply anything. I'm shy with pics of me but I think I'll start to post more. Thanks guys : )

Monday, February 22, 2010

My Favorite Things: The Four Seasons Maui

For those of you suffering from cabin fever, lots of snow and cold temps, I thought I would add a hotel review today. I plan on reviewing every hotel I go to, and started with the new Ritz Carlton in Dove Mountain, AZ earlier in the year. And even though this isn't a current review, as I went this past summer, I had to include it because it is perhaps my favorite hotel and place in the world. I'll will keep the reviews for recent trips only from now on though. (One exception might be the Four Seasons Las Vegas, which was a stop-over on this trip and a lovely place as well. )

The pictures in no way do the hotel or the place justice. It is so beautiful it really takes your breath away. It is constantly ranked as the best hotel in Hawaii and among the highest rated hotels in the world by magazines like Conde Nast, and when you get here, you have no doubt that is true.

View from the room 

The Lobby

The concierge level here was second to none, and all the ladies here took care of us, and couldn't have been more friendly and welcoming! (for why the concierge level is so great, look at my previous post, or see the free champagne pic from the concierge lounge below, and know why I liked it so much!) You can also see a bit of the perfectly manicured grounds in this picture. The entire place didn't have a leaf or blade of grass out of place, I enjoyed their attention to detail and perfection. 

Up in the Conceirge Level

The beach was beautiful, but I must say the Pacific isn't the tranquil, clear water of the Carribean or anything. It got pretty rough if you went out past morning, and was prettier to look at than to play around it. I stuck to the beautiful pool area and its cabanas. 

On the cliffs in a beach chair facing the Pacific

The Beach

They had a large main pool with a beautiful fountain in the middle where I spent most of my time. You could get these cabanas, which came with beach chairs, tables and much needed shade. They also brought around cool water misters, frozen fruit, sunscreen, cucumber slices and other goodies compliments of the resort for the guests by the pool as well as roving people from the spa giving hand, foot or back massages. It was truly heaven! 

View from my cabana..of another cabana!

Pool and Cabanas in background

The Pool lit up at night 

The guest rooms were plush and updated. They all had marble bathrooms stocked with L'Occitane products (score!), beautiful balconies and all the amenities you could want. The food was amazing in every restaurant we went to, and includes a off shoot of Wolfgang Puck's famous Cali eatery Spago. They used all fresh, organic and high quality ingredients everywhere we went that were found local as much as possible, so they support and maintain the fishermen, farmers and cattle ranchers of the state. I couldn't have been happier here, and if you can go once in your lifetime (or more), this is the place to stay. You will not regret it. 

And finally because the island itself is so pretty, I included a few pics of our travels around the island...

I think they call this Shark Bay..eek!

Road to Hana

The famous black sand beaches on the island..there are red ones too! 

On the highest point in Maui..Haleakala..watching the sunrise.
It was freezing (in June) and over 10,000 ft above sea level 

Before the sun comes up..the sky really is illuminated all those colors!


Thursday, February 18, 2010

What's in the Box?!

...well I guess it's more of a tin really. I went over to my local Lush counter today and picked up a couple things that needed replenishing. Since I have been working nonstop, both the gym and schoolwork kind, I have been stressed and unable to do anything to relax recently, I went and got myself a little pick-me-up gift that is brand new and quite adorable if you ask me! So...what's in the box (tin) you ask?

*cue Olivia Newton John music*

It's a new set of nine of their most popular bath bombs called "Let's Get Fizzical." Oh Lush, you crack me up with your clever names sometimes. Everytime I say the same to myself in my head, I go into a chorus of that Olivia Newton John song. Hmmm...maybe it's me. 

Anyway, it comes in above colorful tin, which is not my taste at all, but it so cheery and colorful that it is a pleasure to look at and have to brighten the dull, gray, snowy weather we have had recently. I am enjoying the tin more than I thought I would. I think it would be good to keep other Lush products in once this is done. 

The bath bombs themselves are not full-size, and for some reason when I saw it online I thought they would be. I do not have a full-size bath bomb to compare them to in pics, but I would say they are about 1/3 smaller than the regular size ones. They are plenty to have a nice bath in, and actually I think that Lush should make the bath bombs in this size and then the bigger size in individuals so you can choose.  I see the big ones as a waste oftentimes. I also have a HUGE soaking tub/jacuzzi, so if these mini's are big enough for that, they will be big enough for everyone. 

The bath bombs contained in this container are as follows (I included a short description of each from the Lush website): 

Top row, starting on left:

*Blackberry-blackcurrent and frankincense

*Bon Bomb-mango butter with citrus. It smells EXACTLY like that powdered lemonade you added to water that I drank when I was a kid. 

*Butterball-vanilla musk 

Middle row:

*Honey Bee-honey-toffee 

*Think Pink-vanilla and tonka bean

*Street Party-they say its scented like a "champagne cocktail" and has glitter in it (it is new for the Olympics; the big size even had little flags in it!)

Bottom Row:

*Big Blue-lavender and lime with sea salt and seaweed

*Sex Bomb-jasmine, sage and ylang-ylang 

*Avobath-zingy lemongrass

I think it's a great pick-me-up gift to yourself or someone you love. It gives you a chance to try nine different kinds of bath bombs, which would be much more if bought separately, and see which one's you like the best. Then you know which ones are your favorites and which to buy full size. I think I might go get one to give away to a follower in the future too, who knows?!

If anyone wants a full description of scent or any specifics of a particular bath bomb, please let me know, I would be happy to do that! I'll probably update with each one as I use them anyway. 


p.s. Tip: If you have a jacuzzi tub like me, or worry about your drain, I would suggest popping the bath bombs that have full on glitter chunks in a pair of old stockings or some cheesecloth. That way you can enjoy all the effects, minus the mess. The drain or jacuzzi won't get clogged up with glitter or chunks, which I cringe thinking about. I don't wanna clean that mess up!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Exciting Beauty News: Rodarte and MAC!

I can take or leave MAC at times, but I must say they often come up with some brilliant ideas. Some news broke today, through Women's Wear Daily, that MAC will be doing a collaboration with Rodarte for a collection available later in the year. Wahoo..I LOVE Rodarte!

"Due in September, the line is inspired by Rodarte’s fall 2010 show and is expected to be available in all MAC doors globally. MAC has provided makeup artistry support to Rodarte’s runway shows since 2006, including today’s show.(" 

I am pretty excited for this collection, even though it is far away. Rodarte is perhaps not what you would wear on an everyday basis, but I see the clothing as creative and beautiful. I hope that will translate to the makeup as well! No further info was given on the collection but I have a few pictures from the show to show to get the idea of the collection it will be based upon. 

I usually don't like using others pictures, but here is the link to take a look (its also a great site I read daily, you should check it out!)


Monday, February 15, 2010

My View: NARS Orgasm Illuminator

Oh NARS, how I love you, let me count the ways.....

So I love Nars cosmetics in general, and that includes their most famous product, Orgasm blush. I bought Orgasm blush the month it came out, many many years ago, because I heard the buzz about it and had to have it. (I still remember my mom being like "what?!" in Saks when I asked for it..hehe) I love it, and think it is one of the most lovely blushers out there. 

Orgasm Blush

It's pinky-peachy-gold glory has been made into several incarnations since then; a nailpolish (very nice but doesn't do much on my fair skintone), a "super orgasm" blush (which is basically just all chunky glitter) and a lipgloss (lovely, albeit sheer). Now the famous color has been made into a liquid illuminator, and the minute I knew about it, I had to have it. Since getting it, my feelings have been mixed.

At first, I was disappointed at the size. It is 1.7oz and no bigger than a foundation, so I wonder how Nars thinks we could put it all over your body for a glow, like they recommend. It certainly wouldn't last long. It's pretty small for the price of almost $30, and I think that is something you might have to consider if you want to buy it. 

A big glob on the hand

 I also tested it on my hand and at first saw nothing but a sheer gold glimmer. This disappointed me. The pics on my hand aren't really gorgeous looking because I had to glob on a lot to get it to show up for the camera. I then tried it with a larger amount and did see that it provided the same exact color as the blush, just in liquid shimmer version. So I guess you have to use somewhat of a large amount to get the color to show through. That being said, when the color does show, it is really pretty in person. I can imagine it on my (faux) tanned skin in the summer being gorgeous.  Although if you have very fair skin like me, I think you should go test it first, as the color I don't see as complimentary on my skin right now, being as fair as it is. I prefer the blush version on my fair skin right now. 

Rubbed in a little 

Overall I am going to keep it because I think it will be lovely for the summer. Although if you have very fair skin, or will be disappointed to spend $30 on a tiny tube, I think you should think twice and look at it in person before ordering. Also if you don't have the blush and want to order this, I would order the blush first. I think it is much more useful. 


Friday, February 12, 2010

My View:Chanel Soleil Tan De Chanel

I figure I could use a little sunshine in my life, as the recent week or so has been nothing but snow, snow and more snow. I got this product probably last summer and it still doesn't have much of a dent in it (cut to not-so-savory picture of what it looks like inside after many months of being molested by my stippling brush) and I love it. Plus isn't it so cute?! It looks fabulous on your vanity!

It is a very..interesting consistency that is hard to describe unless you have it. It is a creamy, dry somewhat hardish mousse consistency and goes to buff on the skin providing a beautiful warm glow. It is not shimmery at all, but still lends s life to the skin since it isn't a traditional powder.

That picture doesn't look so pretty, but it is really beautiful on the skin. You can use it in many different ways. As a base under makeup, a base where the sun would hit before powder bronzer if you want to be really bronze, and a bronzer or a cheek color on its own. It also is nice for contour, especially in hollow of the cheek. I like using a stippling duo fibre or "skunk" brush to apply it (the ones with the two colors, black and then white at the tips), and I think its the best kind of brush to give the most natural look. I like the MAC 187 or the Sephora Professional (the silver handle) one the best.

It's the closest to the tropics I'm getting at the moment!

I'll leave you with a pic of the view out my great room window. It looks pretty, but I can't wait for all of it to be gone!


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

DIY Glam:Sugar Lip Scrub

I have been basically held hostage inside my house since last weekend because of a snowstorm that left over 20 inches of snow on the ground. Well we had another 8 or so inches last night and although I was able to get out for groceries between storms, I haven't been able to go anywhere in a while. I think Sephora misses me.

Since I haven't been able to go anywhere, and my lips have been so dry because of the freezing weather, I decided to whip up a tasty and effective homemade lip scrub. I don't suggest eating it, but it does taste pretty good on your lips.

It is really simple. All you need is brown sugar and honey. I added a pack of raw sugar also to increase the intensity of the scrubbing, because I needed that, although I would suggest just sticking to the brown sugar if you are unsure. I wish I had organic brown sugar or honey in the house, but since I didn't, I just used what I had. I also have here some little pots I found around the house to stick the scrub in.

Mix brown sugar and honey together in a bowl...and voila! It's as easy as that!

Pretty effective won't save your life..but I see it as just as good as any lip scrub I have bought at what would be 100x the price. 


Monday, February 8, 2010

My View:Benefit Powderazzi

This is a really cute set by Benefit, encasing 3 of their popular boxed powders in one. This one has Coralista (a pinky-coral flush of color), Dallas (a dusty rose-bronze color that could be used as blush, bronzer or contour depending on skin color) and Hoola (a light matte tan bronzer). I love the idea of this and am happy I got it..although it wasn't exactly what I expected

....meaning it was a lot smaller than I expected!

It is very small samples of each, and I guess I was expecting something slightly larger and sturdier, since their original boxed powders are so big! Considering it is less than the price of one of the powders themselves, I guess I shouldn't have expected that much, but I was a little let down. That being said,  I think it is a great idea for those that do not have the full-size version of the powders, or like them so much they want one small compact to travel with. The powders themselves seem to be of the same high quality as the originals.  I wanted to review this also because it might be another nice alternative if you are looking to try the infamous Coralista blush I reviewed last week.

It's cute, isn't it?!

Dallas-top left;Coralista-top right;Hoola-bottom right

What can I say, I am a sucker for blush!