Monday, April 30, 2012

Manicure Monday: Red Carpet Hearts

I have been eyeing this gorgeous manicure from Pretty Purple Polish for some time now and since I have a similar polish and the same stamping plate, I finally decided to try it out.  Love!!
I started out with two coats of Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Red Carpet, which is an absolutely stunning shimmering red.  I almost didn't want to cover it up!  But alas, I had to do my best to recreate the original look.
Then I stamped with Wet N Wild Wild Shine in Black Creme using Bundle Monster image plate BM11.  A few of the hearts on this spidery design were a little misformed, but overall it was beautiful!  I didn't want to take it off but the high level of shimmer in this polish made it chip pretty quickly so it only lasted two days.  For those two days, I stared at my nails constantly and I got a lot of compliments too!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

April Favorites Video

If you are interested in watching my April Favorites Video, I have linked it below.  Enjoy!

Shopping My Stash, Week of 4-29-12

Yesterday I wrote a post about how I have separated all of my makeup so that I will know what I have and have not used yet.  These are all of the items I picked out from the large drawers containing items I have not yet used.  Of course, each week I am still using most of the everyday items I discussed in last week's Shopping My Stash post so if you're interested in those items, you can check out that post.  Here I mostly have color cosmetics.

NOTE: Any item marked with an asterisk (*) are items I am trying to finish up for my Project X Pan.

1. Hard Candy So Baked Bronzer in Hula Hula
2. Physician’s Formula Organic Wear 2-in-1 Bronzer and Blush in Light Bronzer/Pink Rose
3. Physician’s Formula Organic Wear 2-in-1 Bronzer and Blush in Light Bronzer/Soft Ginger
4. Too Faced Candlelight Translucent Powder (highlighter)
5. e.l.f. Studio Blush in Blushing Rose
6. Cover Girl Cheekers Blush in Classic Pink
7. L.A. Colors Blush in Peach Rose
8. L.A. Colors Blush in Pink Blush
9. N.Y.C. Blushable Crème Stick in Big Apple Blush

I also am still working on that same Hard Candy lipgloss I mentioned in my last Shopping My Stash post, as I have two or three more days of use out of it before it's gone.

1. e.l.f. Essentials Lipstick in Classy
2. Sally Girl Lipstick in 388359: Manic
3. N.Y.C. Ultra Moist Lipwear in Cameo (discontinued)
4. N.Y.C. Extreme Lip Glider Lip Gloss in Carnegie Melon
5. Essence Stay With Me Long Lasting Lip Gloss in My Favorite Milkshake
6. Neutrogena Moisture Shine Gloss in Glimmer (discontinued)
7. NYX Mega Shine Lip Gloss in Cosmo

*1. Physician’s Formula Shimmer Strips Pencil Liner for Blue Eyes (Brown shade)
*2. Physician’s Formula Shimmer Strips Pencil Liner for Blue Eyes (Black shade)
3. e.l.f. Shimmer Eyeliner in Boldly Bronzed
4. e.l.f. Eye Widener in Pearl White
5. e.l.f. Cream Eyeliner in Gunmetal
6. Physician’s Formula Shimmer Strips Gel Cream Liner for Green Eyes (Purple Shade)

1. e.l.f. Everyday Basics 32 Shade Eyeshadow Palette
2. Wet N Wild Color Icon Shadow Single in Envy 
3. NYX Shadow Single in Lime Green
4. Savvy Satin Shadow Trio in Vintage Wines (discontinued)
5. Essence Color & Shine Eyeshadow in Stage Beauty
*6. Sally Girl Eyeshadow Single in Champagne
7. Hard Candy Eyeshadow Duo in Secret Rendezvous
8. Too Faced Baked Shadow in Magenta Moon
9. ULTA No Name 6 Pan Eyeshadow (Limited Edition Holiday Present)
10. Physician’s Formula Matte Collection Quad Eyeshadow in Canyon Classics

Saturday, April 28, 2012

REALLY Shopping My Stash

I've been thinking to myself for awhile now that it would be pretty cool to find a way to be sure I use all of my makeup at least once.  I kept thinking it would be neat to move all of my makeup to one spot and only put it away after I've used it.  This way I would know every bit of makeup that I have or have not used over a given period of time.  Today I finally figured out a way to do just that.  I cleared out two drawers of my large storage container.  See below.
Then I removed all of my eyeliners, eyeshadows, blushes, bronzers, highlighters, and lipsticks from their normal storage and divided them into the two drawers.  Then I went through all of my recent (since April 1, 2012) shopping my stash lists and removed any products that I had used recently and put them back into their usual storage in Sterilite drawers.  (Like the one pictured below.)
So the idea is that I will really be shopping my stash from the two sets of drawers of items that I haven't yet used.  This way, I don't end up shopping my stash and just using the same items over and over again.  I think this will really force me to use some products that I haven't used in a really long time.  Maybe I will find a new favorite!  I was going to list all of the items that I had set aside but then I realized that the list would be a mile long.  Instead, I took some pictures.
These are the eyeshadows I haven't yet shopped from my stash.  I also have a few palettes but I am storing them somewhere else because they wouldn't fit in the drawers.
In this second drawer, I have a small basket holding all of my eyeliners and one holding lipsticks also.  In front of the baskets, I have all of my blushes, highlighters, and bronzers. I think this will be a fun way to get more use out of what I have.  It will also be interesting to see how long it takes to use every item.  Sometimes I swear I could use a different eyeshadow every day for a year and never use the same thing twice!

The last picture I have to share with you is my fat cat, Nero.  He was lounging around on the floor next to where I was taking pictures and he was just too cute not to share!  Usually he follows Brian everywhere and only hangs out with me if Brian isn't around (I'm his second pick, LOL) but today he was highly interested in this makeup rearrangement so I had the rare chance to snap a picture of him.  Isn't he adorable?

Friday, April 27, 2012

Protecting My Table From Polish

Does anyone else paint their nails at their dining room or kitchen table?  Well if so, then I'm willing to wager that you may have also accidentally gotten acetone, nail polish or glitter all over that table at one point in time.  (There are definitely spots on my table where the acetone has worn off the shellac!)  My table is a hand me down so I don't worry too terribly much about imperfections but I know for me, polishing can become a pretty messy business. About a year ago, I got this great free gigantic catalog in the mail.  I was going to throw it out but then I found that it made a great polish protector for my table.
However, as you can tell, it's seen better days.  The acetone has rubbed the ink off and it usually ends up all over my fingers, creating a vicious finger-cleaning cycle.  Then, I was reading Bregje's blog: Oooh, Shinies! and I saw in the Tips, Tricks, & How To section that she uses a clear placemat to do all of her nail art.  It protects her table and works as an easily cleanable surface.  What an ingenious idea!  So I headed off to my local Target to check out their placemats!
They didn't have any plain clear placemats but I found this cute leaf patterned one for only $1.99!  I use my nail art wheels to test out looks so I really just needed this for a surface to apply and remove polish so that my table is protected from the nail polish and remover.  It's a much better solution than the Restoration Hardware catalog; easier, prettier and cleaner.  Guess I can recycle that heavy old book now!

New Mascara

I completely forgot about this new mascara I picked up last week until I was searching through my photograph folders and stumbled upon it!  I am running low on waterproof mascara so I picked this up to try out as a replacement for my Almay Get Up & Grow Waterproof Mascara.  It's the e.l.f. Studio Waterproof Lenghtening & Volumizing mascara.  I recently went to my local Target store and after a brief remodel, they are now carrying e.l.f. products!  That's exciting because before that, the nearest Target store that sold e.l.f. was about thirty-five minutes away.  I've only had a chance to use this once so I'm not sure how I feel about it yet.  Has anyone else tried this mascara?

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Manicure: Total Fail

Today I am sharing with you a manicure that is pretty much a total fail.  I was thinking sand meets beach water but it didn't come out looking like what I had hoped so it didn't even last twenty-four hours on my nails.
After applying a base coat, I started out with two coats of a no name Markwins nail polish in a frosty bronze shade.  It was quite disappointing on its own and that's pretty much where this manicure starts to go downhill.  On a nail wheel, I tried putting one coat of Wet N Wild Fast Dry nail polish in Blue Wants to be a Millionaire over the bronze.  It looked great!  But when I applied it on my actual nails, I had trouble getting it even so I thought a beachy look would be fun.  I applied a second coat of the fun blue semi-holographic glitter on the tips to try to make a gradient sort of effect.  FAIL.  I should have tried sponging it on instead of brushing or something because it just didn't go on evenly and ended up looking like a kid did my nails.  Boo.
The only thing that I think could have saved this pathetic nail art mess would have been the flip flop stamp (yet to be released) from Bundle Monster.  Then it would have covered some of my gradient sins and how cute would this mani be with flip flops?!?  I definitely plan on ordering this new set of plates from Bundle Monster as soon as they come out.  Maybe I'll try it again when I get my hands on the new plates!  Until then, I'll just drool over the new images on Bundle Monster's facebook page.  And also, how stinking cute are those owl images?  WANT!!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

e.l.f. Essentials Shimmer Eyeliners

My husband purchased this set of five e.l.f. Shimmer Eyeliners for me for Christmas.  At the time, the set was available at Target for $5.  Currently, the shades are available individually at for $1.00 each.
In the package that I got, the liners were not labeled with a shade name but from my best ability to match them to the ones available now, the colors I have are: Gunmetal, Black Bandit, Plum Passion, Boldly Bronzed, and Twinkle Teal.
These liners are very soft and glide on easily.  The colors are very nice but some are more shimmery than others.  The problem I have with these liners is that they are even easier to glide off your eyes than glide on your eyes.  Below I have swatched each shade.

After swatching, I waited about one minute for the liners to have time to set.  I then took one finger and very gently rubbed it across the swatches in one direction one time.  You can see how much the swatches smeared already.  Time did not help these liners to set at all.
Then I rubbed with a fair amount of pressure across the swatches forward and then backward.  This is what happened.
A hot smudged mess!  I was not very pleased at all with the lasting ability of these liners.  As a contact wearer, I tend to touch my eyes a fair amount during the day and these liners simply can't hold out well enough for me at all.  I don't foresee myself getting very much use at all out of these, especially when I can get lovely shimmer liners that will last from the drugstore.  Physician's Formula Shimmer Strips Eyeliners might be a good deal more expensive than $1.00 each but at least I know they'll stay on my eyes and not end up on my fingers.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

New video! Regret Buys

I just wanted to take a moment to share my latest video with you.  It's on my recent Regret Buys.

Pedicure: Smooth Sailing

I wasn't a big fan of this pedicure so it ended up lasting less than a week.  I started out with two coats of Essie nail polish in Smooth Sailing, which is a really pretty periwinkle-blue with shimmer.  The color was lovely but I wasn't very happy with the stamping.
I used Sally Hansen Insta-Dri in Silver Sweep and Bundle Monster plate BM14.  I used the stars design and if you click to enlarge you can see that the stamp came out pretty well on my left foot but on the right foot, I stamped it on crookedly.  I also had a really hard time getting the stars on my smaller toes.  I just am really not very good at aiming when it comes to nail art stamping!  I guess I'll just keep practicing and hopefully I will get better with time.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Manicure Monday: Mint Sorbet & Stamping

I can't even express how much I loved this manicure!  I was so sad that it chipped so quickly!  It was soft, feminine, and perfect for spring!
After applying my Orly Bonder Base Coat, I applied two coats of Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Mint Sorbet.  Great application, as usual with this line.  The color is a soft pastel green mint creme.  So lovely!
Then I stamped over the green with Konad Special Polish in White and Bundle Monster Image Plate BM10.
I was really sad that this manicure chipped within less than 12 hours.  I'm beginning to think that my Seche Vite Top Coat may not be the ideal top coat for me.  While I love that it dries so quickly, I think it may be helping the polish to chip even faster.  In Decemeber, when I was using the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Top Coat, my nails lasted much longer.  However, the Insta-Dri was not so instant with dry time and I usually ended up smearing or smudging the polish before it completely dried.  Sometimes it was still tacky thirty minutes or more later.  Right now I am experimenting with NYC Longlasting Top Coat and so far on the two manicures I've used it with, I've had great success.  I just redid my nails with a gorgeous red so we'll see how that goes!

Shopping My Stash, Week of 4-22-12

It's a lazy, rainy day here at my house and I am too unmotivated to film a YouTube video today.  Why would I want to get off the couch when I have had this cuddling with me all day?
Sleepy Isabella Kitty!
While Isabella does hog up almost the entire ottoman, I don't mind because she is so warm and snuggly today!  So I thought I would just post my shopping my stash items on my blog instead!  These are all items that I plan on using this week.  I am going to start with some of the items that I have been using pretty much every day and plan on using this week as well.
Everyday Items
Everyday Items:
1. Cover Girl Clean Finish Foundation in Ivory (mixed with #2)
2. Physician's Formula Healthy Wear SPF 50 Tinted Moisturizer in Fair to Light (mixed with #1)
3. NYC Smooth Skin Bronzing Face Powder in Sunny
4. Maybelline Dream Matte Powder in Cream
5. Physician's Formula Healthy Wear SPF 50 Bronzer in Fair
6. NYC Showtime Volumizing Mascara Waterproof in Black
7. Wet N Wild Megalash Clinical Mascara in Black
8. Too Faced Shadow Insurance
9. Jordana Fabubrow Eyebrow Pencil in Medium Brown
10. Essence Clear Brow Gel
11. Maybelline Mineral Power Concealer in Light
12. Physician's Formula Shimmer Strips Eyeliner Trio in Nude Eyes (Champagne shade)
13. e.l.f. Mineral Eye Primer
14. Pixi Brightening Peach Correction Concentrate
15. Hard Candy Sheer Envy Face Primer
1. Smashbox Click You're It Eyeshadow Palette
2. L'Oreal Eyeshadow Quad in Canyon Stones
3. Maybelline Eyeshadow Trio in Almond Truffle
4. Wet N Wild Eyeshadow Trio in Silent Treatment
5. e.l.f. Eyeshadow Quad in Brownstone
6. e.l.f. Eyeshadow Single in Coffee Bean
7. ULTA Mineral Eyeshadow in Gleam
8. Sally Girl Eyeshadow Single in Champagne
9. ULTA No Name 6 pan Limited Edition Holiday
10. Milani Liquid Eye Metallic Eyeliner Pencil in Brown
11. Wet N Wild Color Icon Eyeliner Pencil in White
12. Too Faced Pinpoint Lash Injection Mascara (sample size)
I totally forgot that I have had this sample size mascara for over a year and never even opened it.  Since I'm running low on mascaras, now is the perfect time to use it!
1. e.l.f. Studio Blush in Gotta Glow
2. e.l.f. Studio Blush in Twinkle Pink
3. e.l.f. Studio Blush in Candid Coral
4. Physician's Formula Happy Booster Blush in Natural
5. Milani Baked Blush in Rose D'Oro
6. Milani Minerals Blush in Mai Tai
7. Hard Candy Blush Crush Baked Blush in Living Doll
8. Hard Candy Glow All The Way Skin Luminizer in Doll Face (sample size)
1. Essence Lipstick in Coralize Me
2. Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick in Dreamy
3. Too Faced Lipstick in Free Love
4. Essence Lipstick in Prom Night
5. Hard Candy Volumizing Lipgloss in Uptown Girl (I'm hoping to finish this lipgloss this week so it is the only one I selected to use.)

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Working on a Lipgloss

I've been keeping this lipgloss at work for the past few weeks for quick touch-ups on the go and I realized yesterday that it was almost empty!  I think I'll soon be adding this to my list of finished Project X Pan products.  It's the Hard Candy Plumping Serum Volumizing Lip Gloss in Uptown Girl.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Beauty and Clothing Haul

This week hubby and I have done a bit of shopping and I picked up several fun beauty and fashion related items.  Here's what I bought.

Turbie Twist: I've been loving the hot pink Turbie Twist that Brian bought me for Christmas but I wanted another one for when the first is dirty.  I saw this pack of two at Ross for only $5.99, which is the price you would usually pay for one.  The offer was too good to pass up! I bought the pack with a white and a purple Turbie Twist.

Belts: While I was at Ross, I also looked for a replacement belt.  I wear a thin black belt with most of my work slacks and my prior one has died.  It served me well for six years but finally it snapped in two so I needed a new one.  This two pack was $9.99 and it came with a black belt with little rhinestones and also a leopard print belt.

Wedge Heels: We stopped at Payless and they were having a buy one get one 50% off sale so I picked up these cute wedge heels.  I had a pair of cork-like wedge heels that I loved but like my old black belt, they've worn out to a sad state.  These pretty heels were $24.99 and they come in wide sizes too!

Sparkley Flip Flops:  In Florida, fancy flips flops are sort of a necessity.  I'm even allowed to wear them to work and these pretty little flip flop wedges (low heel) will look really nice with a pair of black slacks or a dress.  They were also $24.99 before sale price.

Nail Wheels: At Sally Beauty Supply, I picked up a pack of Nail Polish & Art Wheels.  I use these to swatch nail polishes as well as experiment with different polish combinations.  This pack contains 10 nail wheels with 18 nails each.  The pack is $5.39 with a Beauty Club Card or $5.99 with no card.

Makeup Wedges and Makeup Remover Wipes: I needed some makeup sponges to blend in the foundation I've been mixing.  (See this post.)  While I enjoy the combination, I needed some sponges for blending, as the brush I have been using has been a little harsh on my currently sensitive skin.  The makeup remover wipes are something that I use every now and then, mostly when I've worn waterproof mascara the day before because it can sometimes leave residue the next day.  The Neutrogena ones are gentle and effective.

Dress: This is what I was most excited about purchasing.  This pretty pink dress is from Target.  It's the Mossimo Juniors Kimono Dress.  It's a jersey knit fabric which is light and airy and I'm hoping to get a lot of use out of it this spring and summer.  It's $18.00 but I also noticed that Walmart has very similar dresses for around $10.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Collection

I recently made this picture the cover photo on my Facebook page and I thought I would just share my collection of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri nail polishes.  I'm not a huge fan of these for actually polishing my nails, as I find that they chip off easily on me.  However, I love them for nail art stamping.  Most of my collection was bought in October with my birthday money from a friend and every one of these polishes stamps like a dream.  Here's the list of colors:

Row 1: (Back row)
Rapid Red
Presto Pink
Flashy Fuchsia
Sonic Bloom
Ruby Rush
Wined Up

Row 2:
Snappy Sorbet
Mint Sprint
Lickety Split Lime
Emerald Express
Brisk Blue
Co-Bolt Blue

Row 3:
Grape Escape
Lively Lilac
Pronto Purple
Silver Sweep
Bronze Ablaze

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Quick Look Tutorial: Shimmer Matte

I just posted a new video to YouTube!  This is a Quick Look Tutorial using a combination of shimmer and matte eyeshadow.  I hope you enjoy!

Mail Call

I was really excited to find this in the mail a few days ago.  I had been on the hunt for a thermal protection glove for quite awhile now.  I had seen one at Sally Beauty Supply for $5.49 and decided against buying it at the time.  Of course, a few days later, I had changed my mind and went back to pick it up.  They were sold out.  No problem, since the next day I was going to the other side of town with hubby anyway.  So we went to Sally there and they were sold out too!  After two more trips to my Sally (each time being promised the gloves would be in this day, then returning that day to find no gloves) I finally said screw it and ordered a glove from Amazon.  I was really pleased with the $7.97 price tag and the fact that shipping was free.  It also arrived really quickly.  Now I might actually be able to get some use out of my Conair Curling Wand!  Click here for the site I bought this glove from if you're interested.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Foundation Perfect Pair

In my Shopping My Stash video this week, I had mentioned that I was planning to try using my Cover Girl Clean Finish Foundation in Ivory in combination with my Physician's Formula Healthy Wear Tinted Moisturizer in Ivory to Fair.  Alone, the Cover Girl is slightly too light and also very difficult to blend.  On the other hand, the Physician's Formula is a bit too moisturizing and too dark.  But when I put them together, they make the perfect pair!
The past few days, I've been mixing one part Physician's Formula with about four parts Cover Girl.  I mix them on the back of my hand, then apply the foundation recipe with my fingers.  I use the e.l.f. Studio Powder Brush (the one with the flat top) to buff it out and I am left with a foundation that I love!  So glad this pair worked out because now I should be able to use both of them!

Have you ever mixed foundations together to make a perfect pair?  What foundations work well for you when combined?

Monday, April 16, 2012

Manicure Monday: Bare Minimum

This was the first nail polish I had ever tried from the ULTA brand and I was pretty impressed.  I got this as a free gift for accumulating a certain number of points on my Club at Ulta card and I wasn't disappointed.  The application was easy with just two coats that dried quickly but not too fast.  I removed this polish after three and a half days and at that time the only wear was a small amount of barely detectable tip wear.
The only thing I didn't really like about this polish was the way the color translated from the bottle to the nail but I think that also has a lot to do with my skintone.  In the bottle, this looks like a frosty gray-leaning taupe but on my nails it looked more like a sad, faded silver.  I think it might look better on someone with a darker skin tone than I have.  On my pasty skin, it looked rather unflattering.  I will definitely have to keep this line of polish in mind for the future, although I don't really feel that I would be willing to spend $6.00 a bottle unless the shade was really unique.