Weekly Round Up: I am a Sephora Addict

Back in my 20s, I didn't really think twice about buying drugstore makeup. It was inexpensive, it worked, and at the time, I wasn't really paying much attention to what it was or was not doing to my skin. My 30s are a different story. For starters, my skin has changed (seriously, WTF is up with that?!), gravity is real, I'm further along in my career, and I decided that I just wasn't going to compromise with anything that I was putting on my face. Enter, my Sephora addiction. 

I'm at VIB status, and lets just say that Rouge is not too far away (for the uninitiated, its the Sephora rewards program: Beauty Insider, VIB, VIB Rouge-- as you move from left to right, you receive more exclusive access and rewards.) And. I've also now passed a tiny bit of this love for high end skincare onto Nick. True story: Nick and I were traveling and he forgot to bring his face wash (he's pretty low maintenance like that: face wash is the only skincare product he uses regularly, not counting sunblock in the summer) so I invited him to use mine. I've now ordered him his own $22 face wash. 

Anyway, as part of my weekly round up this week, I thought I'd share some recent beauty buys that I'm loving so far in 2016!


1. Marc Jacobs Beauty Velvet Noir Major Volume Mascara: full disclosure, I didn't technically buy this mascara. I received it as part of the Influenster program, and I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE it. I've actually stopped using the Dior mascara that was my go to because this is so awesome. It is super black and inky and really leaves your lashes with loads of volume. And rest assured, when the time comes for me to buy more mascara, this is the one I will be buying. 

2. Sonic Airbrush Sponge: Best $11 beauty buy. Its a foundation sponge and it really does a great job blending the foundation in so it looks like your face has been gently buffed. I love this product, although there is one downside-- you end up using more product than if you're using a foundation brush.

3. Marc Jacobs #Instamarc Light Filtering Contour Powder: I have a round face. And all those crazy youtube contour makeup videos got me thinking I could fake some cheekbones. And I have to say, this lets me do a subtle fakeout. I've also discovered I really like highlighter, so there's that.

4. Veil Mineral Primer: I love this primer. I've used so many primers over the past few years, and this one is my absolute favorite. It goes on super smooth and even, and I swear it makes my makeup last longer. The super sleek packaging doesn't hurt either.

5. Tangle Teaser: If you've been following me on Instagram (and if you haven't, why aren't you?) then you will notice that I've been wearing my hair curly (its natural texture) more often. The problem with my curly look is that I still hate washing my hair, but the curls really do tangle my hair. This tangle teaser hairbrush is a lifesaver. No more ripping out hair from the root -- detangling is easy and painless! 

I hope you enjoyed this roundup of my favorite beauty products! I'll do another in a few months, because after all, I am a Sephora addict, but in the mean time, leave me a note in the comments if there are beauty product you think I should try! 


Winter Skin Survival

A few years ago, I did a little feature on beauty tips on Fox 8.

But since that was over a year ago, I feel like I'm due for an update. Here's what I'm using the winter to keep my skin soft and hydrated:

From left to right:
Julep Mint Condition pedi creme: I walk around barefoot. Which is so terrible in the winter, but its what I do. This smells delightful, and works wonderfully for daily wear. I usually put it on before bed and before workouts-- I once read that the heat from a workout helps the lotion get absorbed into your feet. I'm not sure its actually true, but it certainly doesn't hurt! *cruelty free
Lush Sympathy for The Skin: I do not say this lightly-- this is THE BEST body lotion ever. It smells like vanilla (you can see the flecks) and dessert, and it leaves your skin ridiculously soft. I've even gotten comments on how soft my skin feels. Even better: this product is vegan and not tested on animals! *cruelty free
Clinique Chubby Stick Baby Tint: This stuff spells sweet relief for my dry lips, and enhances the natural color of my lips. It looks different on every person, adapting to your own lip color. *animal testing language vague.
Swell Skin Miraculous Multi-tasker: This sea buckthorn oil is magical. Keeps my skin clear and hydrated, wrinkle-free, and also helps with accidental flat-iron burns. This smells a little "earthy" and is made locally, and is not tested on animals. *cruelty free

So there you have it-- my winter skin rescue arsenal. What are some of the beauty products that you're loving this season?

A Little Tease

A few months ago, I happened to meet a very cool woman at R/S: like me, she was born in and grew up in a foreign country, like me she was in a relationship with a ginger, and like me she is mom to two boxers. I'm a great believer in destiny, and 3 coincidences just seems liked the universe was trying to tell me something. Turns out, she is a hair stylist: clearly, the universe was telling me it was time to do something different with my hair!!!

Carolina works at Tease in Lakewood, and I decided to go in for a blowout to give her a try! The salon is  super charming with its exposed brick and vintage dressers.

Carolina ended up doing my hair in a side-do that I absolutely LUUURRVVEEED! 

Needless to say, I was back the next week for haircut.

The results from the first haircut: She talked me out of bangs since it was still the beginning of summer, but I absolutely adored the curls and volume!

Over the past month, she put in the bangs (its almost fall after all) and touched up my ombre to make it look more natural (well, as natural as ombre is going to look on someone with SUPER dark hair)

Overall, I am more than pleased with all of my experiences with Carolina. She is extremely knowledgable and can turn a vague description into a real vision. That said, I ALWAYS recommend taking in pictures. Best of all, she will spend the time to show you HOW to style your hair and give you plenty of options to change up your look. So, if you're toying with the idea of a new stylist, I absolutely recommend Carolina at Tease!!!

Transformed by CHANEL

A few weeks ago, Suzanne invited me to join her (and Allison, Michelle, Molly and Jess) at a pampering session at Saks. Our evening began with a perfume sampling courtesy Bond No. 9. To be honest, I have mixed feelings about Bond No. 9- there are some scents that make me gag, but there are others that I'm completely obsessed with, particularly Chinatown, High Line, and Madison Square Park, but at $170+ for a small bottle, I'm going to have to be 100% sure that I absolutely LUUURVVEE the scent before I buy it.

After the sampling, we were invited to the Chanel counter to test out the Sublimage skin care system.

The skin care products are extremely luxurious, and while they did give us samples to take home, I haven't tested them out yet.  While there, they let us know of a makeup event with CHANEL National Makeup Artist Sterling Williams.

As someone who ABSOLUTELY ADORES makeovers, naturally, I signed up.

Saturday rolled around, and I walked into my CHANEL appointment looking like this (As you can tell, I have absolutely NO makeup up on).....

And walked out looking like this......

I cannot even tell you how much I LUUUUURRRVVVEEEEEEEE this look. I almost always do a smoky eye, so the bold lip was a big change for me. I felt so completely glamorous!!!

If you're curious, the products used on me were:
Vitalumiere Aqua Compact #50 --- I instantly fell in love with this product and bought it
Soleil Tan De Chanel Bronzing Powder in Desert Spice
Poudre Signee de Chanel Illuminating Powder
Joues Contraste Blush in Rose Bronze
Les 4 Ombres Quadra Eyeshadow in Spices
Stylo Yeux Eyeliner in Noir Intense
Le Volume de Chanel Mascara
and last, but certainly not least, the bold lip was achieved with Rouge Double Intesite in Ruby Lite-- obviously, as key to this look, I bought this one too.

With the man himself: Sterling Williams

I had such a FABULOUS time at my makeover which I carried into Girls Night with the Jenn's- AJP and JV!!

If you have the time, I highly recommend you take advantage of a makeover opportunity and try out a new look. Who knows, it may unlock an entirely new side of you!!!