MAC Harmony

MAC Harmony · $20

Now I'm not sure what possessed me to want to buy this — but I think it has a lot to do with my recent MAC haul/obsession. I'll be the first to say it: I know the absolute basics when it comes to contouring and I'm really not all that good at it (yet). That said, I was bored and found myself browsing the MAC counter, swatching Harmony and was basically talked into it. I mean, when you're told you have nice bone structure and that it looks amazing on you, how can you say no? I was sooooo skeptical and still am, but I'm dealing with it.

Harmony is a really nice "muted rose-beige brown" as the MAC website says. Lots of people love to contour with this color but I was afraid it'd be too pink or too brown for me. It still might be, I'm still unsure, but am doing my best to work with it. I think it would be amazing for summer when I'm a bit more tanned but for now I'm just buffing and buffing to make it look as subtle as possible (is it working?). Either way I'm glad to have added this to my collection and hopefully with a bit of practice I'll get better at contouring because to be honest, I'm loving the way it looks!

What do you guys think of Harmony? What are your favorite contouring colors? 


Wishlist: England Edition

1. Trip to SpaceNK 2. Lip Crayon (and any other makeup) from Topshop 3. Velvet Skater Skirt from Topshop 4. NEOM Candle 5. Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer 6. Rimmel Scandal Eyes Nude liner 7. Bourgeois Healthy Mix Concealer 8. Tangle Teezer 9. WAGAMAMA 10. Topshop Smudger Brush

Since getting married, Richard and I haven't been back to England in ~2 years, which seems so insane (where does the time go?), so we're heading out for Christmas and New Years to spend time with his family. While we're there, we have quite a few things on our list to-do (and to-buy list).

Space NK is something we don't have here, well, not really. We have a tiny one in SF but they don't carry much that I can't get elsewhere. I'd love to get my hands on some Kevyn Aucoin, Eve Lom, etc.
Heading to Topshop is a must — while we have little pop-up ones in Nordstrom here, but they don't carry makeup/accessories/all clothes, which is a bummer. I'll also definitely be heading to Primark and Monki. Oh and Muji!!

Next on my list is Boots. Oh Boots, how I miss thee. We don't really have anything like Boots in the States (except maybe Ulta?) but I've got to get my hands on some cult favs, like the Rimmel liner and Collection concealer. Also, Tangle Teezer, you will be mine.

Last but not least, is food. When I was living with Richard and England back in 2010, I got my fair share of Nando's and Pizza Express and I can't possibly explain how much I whine about not having them here.
Our must-have-foods while visiting are: Nando's, Wagamama, Wokon, GBK, Pizza Express, and a damn good curry. There are also some places in London I'd like to check out like Bodeans and Queen of Hoxton, but they're not on the top of my list.

Please please please, if you have any recommendations for shops in London or makeup you can't get in the states, let me know! Also, I'd love to meet up with some people while I'm out there, so if you're down also let me know!



Face: YSL Touché Éclat, Tarte Exposed · Brows: Anastasia Brow Wiz, MAC Mystery · Eyes: MAC Painterly, Malt, Sable, Teddy eyeliner, Maybelline Illegal Lenghts Mascara · Lips: MAC Rebel

This past Saturday, with a list in hand, I took a trip up to San Francisco to the MAC Pro Store and ended up with a bit more than I had planned, but oh well!  I really wanted a Z-Palette but they're so hard to get here (and I'm impatient) so I settled for the new MAC palette. I know some people didn't like the old one, but I've got to admit the new one is beautiful and sturdy.

For shadows, I opted for: Shroom, Patina, Charcoal Brown, Sable, Copperplate, Quarry, Malt, and Satin Taupe.  They seem to complement each other beautifully and also go well with some others I need to de-pot (Naked Lunch, Silver Ring, and Honesty). I think what started this whole thing was me dropping my beloved Satin Taupe and being way-too-sad about it. I originally purchased it to wear when Richard and I got married (and I did) so when it broke, I was feeling a bit nostalgic (lol?).

I really wanted a paint pot but couldn't decide between Bare Study and Painterly — the lovely lady MAC talked me into Painterly and I'm glad she did. It's such a nice nude base for shadows and it makes the colors pop a bit. My only fear is waking up one morning to find a dry paint pot, but hopefully that won't be for quite a while.

I repurchased Teddy, my favorite brown eyeliner of all time. I only wear it on the outer-half of my waterline, but I think it's perfect for that use. I also got the MAC 217 as I was in the market for a new blending/shadow brush. I'm in love! I need more brushes! Help!

Last but definitely not least are Plumful and Rebel. I originally went in for Capricious, but they didn't have it in stock, sigh. I figured I should get Plumful since I wanted it eventually anyway and was then talked into Rebel as well — but hey, I ain't regretting it.

Soooo that's that. Sorry this was ridiculously long! It's stuff like this that makes me seriosuly consider buying a new camera with video capability so I can do videos (so if you have any recommendations please let me know). I think I'm set for a while when it comes to MAC products — what are your favorite things from MAC?


NUXE Rêve de Miel

The winter cold and dry indoor air has seemed to wreak a bit of havoc on my lips as of late. I've been using basically every lipbalm I own — EOS and Carmex, Blistex and Tokyo Milk, but I needed something a little more hardcore. As if lip balms are hardcore?? 

Rêve de Miel is a really interesting and overall badass lip balm; the texture, the smell, just everything about it. It's made with honey, plant oils, shea butter, grapefruit essence, etc, so this stuff is packed full of nourishing ingredients to help keep your lips moisturized. The texture is butter-like (but not?) and pretty thick meaning you don't need to use a ton to get the results you want. It also stays on for ages!  I love using this as an overnight treatment — waking up with way-less-chapped lips than usual. The packaging is really nice and I don't mind at all that this is going to add a bit more weight than I'd like to my bag (it's totally worth it).  I honestly don't even know what else to say about this other than go out and get it if you have dry lips, seriously. It's like the god of all lip balms and at this point I'm not sure if I could go without it now.
Anyway, I'm going to stop here before I go too far with professing my love for this stuff. Ugh it's soooooo good.

Have you guys tried this before? If so, what do you think?


YSL Le Teint Touché Éclat Foundation

Oh yes, I've finally hopped on that bandwagon. After many weeks of contemplation, I gave in and bought the foundation everyone has been talking and blogging about (and yes, this was another Sephora VIB sale purchase!). Because it's normally quite hard for me to find foundations (due to my fair but olive with a dash of pink complexion), I figured this YSL range would have something for me, and oh ho ho, it did does. 

BD10 is literally the most. perfect. match. for me. ever. I love applying and wearing this; it gives you a really natural looking base while illuminating all the right places. I also love that I can wear this lighter or build it up for more coverage. I've worn this all day long — putting it on at 8am and getting home 12 hours later and it still looks soooooo good. Not to mention it feels really luxurious to use, I mean look at that glass bottle! 

But what happened to Laura Mercier Silk Creme, you say? I still love it and use it sometimes but for me personally, it just doesn't compare to Touché Éclat. I've got to admit, this is holy grail for me. There, I said it. 

So what do you guys think of this foundation? Love it as much as I do?


Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau de Toilette

Let me start out by saying I'm not really one to branch out, try new perfumes, or have a little collection of a few. I've been religiously wearing Burberry Brit Eau de Toilette for 7 years (what?!?!) and Vera Wang Princess for 2. I normally go through a bottle then switch to a different perfume, but as of late I'm liking wearing something that suits my mood and the weather.

I recently came across Daisy and couldn't look away from the adorable flowers that topped this beautiful bottle. I instantly fell for it. It's really hard for me to justify spending money on perfume so I waited until the VIB sale and snatched it up quicker than you can snap your fingers. 20% off, yay!

Daisy is a lovely year round scent — floral with a hint of fruit and musk. With an array of top notes such as strawberry, violet leaves, ruby red grapefruit, gardenia, violet petals, jasmine petals and base notes of musk, vanilla and white woods you're left with a warm, floral and feminine scent. My only qualm about this perfume is it's lasting power — it seems to fade on skin quite quickly (but stays on clothes for quite some time). Either way, I'm still in love and really enjoy wearing it! 

What do you guys think of Daisy and Marc Jacobs perfume in general? 


PIXI Shade Quartette in Shades of Taupe

I was lucky enough to recieve a few bits from PIXI, and thought I'd start out by showing you all the beautiful eyeshadow quartette that I had been eyeing (no pun intended) for quite some time. P.S. Sorry if the lighting is off — it's so gloomy today!

Shades of Taupe is exactly what it says it is — shades of taupe, duh. There's four different colors — one matte, one satin, and two shimmers and let me tell you, they're just the perfect colors for autumn and winter. I really love taupes, purples, and browns in the colder months so I'm super excited to have this in my collection.  Whether you just want a light pinky-brown on your lids or maybe a subtle smokey eye like I did, you can do a lot with these four shades. They're super pigmented, seriously a little goes a long way. They're also extremely soft and really easy to apply and blend. Overall they're an amazing quality and for $22? That's basically a steal. 

What do you think of the PIXI shade quartettes? What are your favorite winter shadow colors? 


Biolage Exquisite Oil

I received a sample of this back in August's Glossybox and I literally clung to the last few drops in hopes it would never run out (but of course it did).  I accidentally came upon it while in a beauty supply store and knew right away I'd be walking out with a bottle. I regret nothing.

Biolage Exquisite Oil is a shine serum and a defrizzer/replenishing treatment all in one. I apply after straightening my hair and can immediately see a difference. The flyaways disappear and my hair becomes super shiny — not to mention it smells amazing. It basically smells like every other Matrix/Biolage product which overall just smells sweet, slightly citrusy(?), and just relaxing as if you've just walked out of the salon. 

It's made with a moringa oil blend which is good for relaxation and replenishing, as well as macadamia and argan oil (also blends) which we all know are great. You can apparently also use this as an overnight treatment, before shampooing or during conditioning. I have yet to do any of those, but I shall report back. I'm really loving using this stuff and can't really picture not having it as part of my hair styling routine. What do you think of the Exquisite Oil line? Is it something you're interested in?


MAC Creme In Your Coffee

When it comes to red lipstick, I'm not quite convinced that red red looks good on me. Because of that I tend to lean towards more brown and deep reds which seem to suit my complexion a lot better. For a long time MAC's Cosmo has been my go-to lipstick but it's a bit more pink than red (yet still has a bit of brown), so I went on a search to find something a little more elegant.

Creme In Your Coffee is just really beautiful. It's described as a "creamy mid-tone pink brown" but it's definitely more reddish brown than pink on me. I'm a huge fan of the cremesheen finish as my lips have been a little more dry as of late, and this finish tends to not dry my lips out! I was between this, Capricous, and Plumful but I'm definitely glad I got this first — especially because everyone is blogging about Plumful at the moment, ha.

MAC lipsticks are still my favorite lipsticks of all. Sooo many colors, finishes, and I just love the packaging. What do you guys think of Creme In Your Coffee? Which lipstick shall I get next?


Travel Bag Essentials #1

Since it's my last day in New Jersey (*cries*) I thought I'd give you a look into what I brought with my on my little Thanksgiving vacation. I've also added links to reviews I've done for certain products!

Let me just start out by saying earlier this week I was talking about how I didn't have a makeup bag anymore and on Black Friday my mom came home with this gorgeous Vera Bradley bag for me. Isn't it adorable? I love it so much, thanks Mama!

Base: I brought my beloved Caudalie Beauty Elixir and Clarins Beauty Flash Balm, YSL Touché Éclat and Laura Mercier's Mineral Powder (reviews for those coming soon, yay!). For application I brought my Real Techniques Buffing Brush and Expert Face Brush.

Cheeks: I brought along Tarte's Amazonian Clay blush in Exposed, Benefit Hervana, and MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle. All my favorites for autumn and winter (minus Douceur).

Eyes: I brought MAC eye shadow in Naked Lunch and NARS Portobello (review coming soon). For lashes I brought my Le Curler and that super duper Dior duo. For eyebrows I've got my Anastasia Brow Wiz, Mac Mystery and a MAC 263 brush.

Lips: My current favorites for A/W: MAC Dark Side, L'Oreal Infallible Le Rouge in Tender Berry and MAC Creme In Your Coffee (review coming soon).

Annnnd that's all, folks. What do you guys think of my traveling essentials? Is there anything you can't go on vacation without?


Batiste Wild Dry Shampoo

Quick review!

I went off dry shampoo for a while, but I'm back in the game (especially since I'm on vacation at the moment). I've recently run out of Brit and am not to keen on the smell of Blush anymore, so when I saw this adorable can in the beauty supply store I just had to go in and try it out. 

Wild is all around a great dry shampoo. The packaging is adorable(!!!!!) and the smell is just really really lovely. I'd definitely say that this is tied with Brit for my favorite Batiste scent — it's quite sweet and a bit vanilla-y, perfect for fall and winter to me. Are you guys into dry shampoo? What are your favorite Batiste scents?


Public Service Announcement

Not really a PSA, but...

I'm currently back in New Jersey for the Thanksgiving holiday and I'm super excited to be here for a while (plus that means we'll be in England in less than a month, eeeeeep). That said, be prepared for regular blogging to happen, for the most part!

Anyway I'm writing this post to say: I'm going to be selling some of my prints on Society6! If you didn't know, aside from blogging, photography is what I'm most passionate about. You can see a bunch of my photos here and see the prints and such that I'm selling here. I'm currently uploading a ton of stuff so stay tuned! Even if you don't buy anything I'd really love for you to just check out my stuff and tell me what you think! Also if you see anything on Flickr that you'd like to see in print form, let me know <3

...and now back to our scheduled programming...


Caudalie Beauty Elixir

It was only a matter of time 'til I hopped on the Beauty Elixir bandwagon. All my favorite bloggers use it and rave about it, so how could I not try it for myself?

All in all it's just a really gorgeous toner. Everything about it is gorgeous — the bottle, the smell, the way it feels on your skin. I use this in the morning after I shower as my face is usually pretty red and this stuff definitely helps calm my skin a ton. My skin also feels a little more, I don't know, firm? Plump? It just feels amazing as if it's truly ready for me to apply makeup. Seems silly, but I don't know how else to explain it. The fact that it's a mist makes it even better, it's overall so much easier to apply than most other toners. 

Another great use? I love spritzing some on around 1-2pm just to make my face and makeup feel a little more refreshed. The plant-y and minty smell really wakes me up and makes me feel slightly luxurious. Overall I'm really in love with this stuff and I'm not sure if that's a good or bad thing. $18 for a 1oz bottle might seem a little steep — until you use it for yourself and see that it really is worth the price. 

What do you guys think of this product? Do you think it deserves the hype it gets?


A few of my favorite things

So I thought I'd do a little something different and show you guys where I keep all my makeup. It's not really storage or anything of that sort — I usually keep out what I use most and throw the rest in my left over Glossybox which is still gives me pretty easy access. This is only really my makeup collection; my hair products, accessories, and tools are a-whole-nother issue I need to tackle one of these days!

I've got a few more Instax photos to put on the wall but I seem to have lost them in the move a few months back, so hopefully I'll be able to find 'em and stick them up soon. The two cards are from Richard and his sister and were for my 23rd birthday this past July. They're just so cute I love having them out. There are a few products here that I haven't reviewed yet, but will be soon! I've fallen (madly) in love with YSL Le Teint Touché Éclat and Marc Jacobs Daisy as of late; I can't stop wearing them! Anywho, let me know what you think of my little setup as I'm loving it right now :)

That little moleskine in the pictures is probably one of my most prized possessions — it was a little gift from Richard when we first started dating and I still love it as much as I did when I got it. Also present is my 'lil pink Nintendo DS loaded up with Harvest Moon Cute.  P.S. shooting/writing this post has put me in a Francoise Hardy/French music mood - go listen.


mountain view

“The secret is, find something you love to do, and then … do it for the rest of your life.” - Rushmore
skirt, jumper, boots · Topshop | Richard's boots · Zara Man

This post is a little different than my usual posts, but it's the first of many like this to come. I've gotten slightly bored of my living room as a backdrop and I feel like other than the expression on my face, the photos lack character, charisma, and fun. This blog is a huge part of expressing who I am so I figure it's time for a change. (I'm also working on a new layout yay!)

Richard and I spent the day in Mountain View dodging people walking through the little area we were taking photos in, drinking pumpkin spice lattes, and of course enjoying a coconut bubble tea. Although this wasn't the best location for photos, we've already scouted out our next one which I'm super excited for! We also saw Skyfall which I totally recommend if you're into Bond movies — it was soooo good.

Hope everyone had an amazing weekend! All photos of me are by Richard (and the others are by me). I'll be posting some on my Flickr, if you'd like to check them out! p.s. let me know if you like posts like this; I love hearing what you all think. ♥


Birchbox Man: November 2012

Birchbox Man · $20/mo

Another BB Man — a little late, but better late than never! This box is all about simplifying and supporting Movember, though not everything here represents those two things. Oh well!

Firstly is the American Crew Post-Shave Cooling Lotion — this is sure to be a hit especially because of how much Richard still loves the Kiehl's Brushless Shave Cream (which also contains menthol). The even cooler thing about this American Crew lotion is that it can also be used as a daily moisturizer! 

The EVOLUTIONMAN Wash & Buff is a handy little face scrub which exfoliates and removes dead skin cells with tiny microbeads. It's not supposed to cause any irritation to the skin which is a definite plus.

The Créme Styler by TOWELDRY (what is with these all caps brand names?!) is a lightweight styler that you warm up in your hands and use to style as desired. It's supposed to be long-lasting and contains keratin and organic wax, so we'll see how it goes!

Next up is a cute little card holder by Old Calgary. BB Man calls this a wallet but yeah, no, definitely not a wallet. There is no way Richard could put his cards and cash in here so I'm going with card holder. Either way it's adorable and awesome for days out when you don't want to lug around a big fat leather wallet. 

Last but not least is the John Varvatos Artisan Eau de Toilette. It's got a citrus-y scent — something I'm not used to smelling in colognes and perfumes, but really lovely none the less. 

All in all this was a great box. Doesn't beat the whiskey stones from last month (which we've been putting to good use), but still awesome! What do you guys think? Have you/your man signed up for this box yet? 

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