Monday, December 29, 2014

January Goals

Happy Monday!

Today at work, I typed 12/29/2014 multiple times. It is the freaking end of the year. It sounds so cliche, but where did the year go?! I feel like it was just my birthday in July, or that I just graduated college in May? It is seriously so crazy how fast this year is gone.

With that, comes the disappointing realization that there goes another year that I didn't stick with my new years resolutions. It sucks and is embarrassing, but I'm writing this here because I can ensure I'm not the only one who SUCKS at keeping my new years resolutions. Like many other women, my goals usually revolve around health and fitness, and just bettering myself overall.

This year, I am going to try something completely different. I am going to make three small goals per month. Ideally, the goals would roll over to the following month, so I don't just stop working on my goals when February starts, but I'm hoping this will be successful for me. Usually, when January 1st comes around, I say I want to "lose weight". Then January 15th rolls around, and I haven't stepped foot in a gym, or improved my eating habits AT ALL. It is because I'm setting too broad of a goal, and I'm not giving myself even a chance to accomplish it because it isn't an overnight thing.

This year, instead of one huge goal, I'm going to work on three smaller goals per month. I am sharing my monthly goals here, because once you publish something it truly helps you stay accountable. So here you have it, my three REALISTIC monthly goals for January.


1. No Starbucks!

I have a confession, I'm literally addicted to Starbucks. I truly mean "literally" there, I feel like I need it everyday, and it is becoming a problem. I do need a cup of coffee in the mornings, but I definitely don't need a White Chocolate Mocha, that is way too many calories, and around $5 a day. I live right down the road from Starbucks, and also work right down the road from Starbucks, which definitely doesn't help my case.

I am going to try to not have Starbucks at all during January. I will still allow myself to have a cup of coffee at home with creamer if I want, but I am more or less just trying to stop Starbucks. It is too expensive, and when I go there I choose a very unhealthy drink, when in reality I truly like just regular coffee with a little creamer at home. I am hoping that once January is over, that I won't crave Starbucks anymore, and I can truly realize that I don't need it. I might still allow myself a coffee every once in a while from Starbucks, but we will see about that;)


2. Exercise More! 

Here is where I always, always, always fail. I put way too big of a goal on it, and I never stick to it. I tell myself I need to go 7 days a week, and the first day I miss, quickly becomes the last time I ever go. I am going to start off January with setting a goal of going to the gym 3 days a week. I am hoping I will want to go more than this once I start going again, but I am not setting that as my goal.

I am going to be very subtle at first, not setting a time limit, or type of exercise that I need to do. I simply am setting a goal of going TO the gym three days a week. In accordance to this goal, it doesn't matter if I stay 10 minutes or 2 hours, I just am setting a goal to make an effort at least three times a week. I truly love working out, so I know that I will love being there once I get there, but the problem is just getting there. Does anyone else have this problem!?


3. Post 2 Blog Posts Per Week! 

I have a lot of fun things planned for my blog for the new year. I have been stunned with the response I have gotten with my blog since starting it, and I really want to take it to the next level. I don't have a set schedule for posting, some weeks I post 3-4 times, and some weeks I only post once. Ideally, I would like to post three times a week, but I have to make my goals attainable or they might not get reached. Two posts a week is still a stretch for me, I am a full time graduate student, and have a full time job as well, but I love my blog and really want to add great content twice a week. I am planning on Wednesday's and Sunday's for posts, but that part is very tentative.

If you have any requests or ideas for what you would like to see here on the blog, please leave it down below, because as you can see, I am wanting to start posting more!




Well, there are my goals for January 2015. I am hoping I can stick to all three of these goals. I will be extremely proud of myself if I can, especially cutting out Starbucks. It sound so silly, but I think that might be my toughest one. I would love to create a habit of getting used to going to the gym, and am definitely looking forward to the money I will save by not getting Starbucks daily.

I am hoping that formatting my goals this way will prove to be successful for me. At the end of January, I will come back and recap how I did at these goals, and whether I was successful, as well as plan my goals for February. Hopefully these three things will carry over to February, and I can add on a few more attainable goals.



As always, thanks for reading!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

My Current Favorite iPhone Apps

Greetings from a very sick blogger. I've been in bed sick now for two full days, and that obviously means I've been rotating between my phone, iPad, and laptop, depending on which one has the most battery at the moment. Being sick in bed is never fun, but some of my favorite iPhone apps have been helping me not feel so miserable. I thought now would be the perfect time to share my current favorite apps, because I've literally been rotating through them all for two days now.




1. Trivia Crack


My boyfriend told me about this app a few days ago, and I'm officially hooked. Just like the title, it's like crack. This game is so fun, but also really challenging. It basically is a head-to-head trivia game that you can play with your Facebook friends, or with a random opponent. You spin a wheel, which lands on a trivia category (Art, Entertainment, Science, History, Sports, or Geography). If you answer three questions correctly from these categories, you can play to win a badge of the category of your choice. The player who gets all 6 badges first wins. It is really fun, simple, but like I said, not easy. I've been playing this like crazy with my friends back and forth, and could barely get my notifications to stay at 0 to take a screen shot of my apps!

2. aa

The name of this app doesn't make much sense, but I have been hooked all day today. It is a silly little game, that takes a little skill, and can get pretty frustrating. There isn't much to it, you tap the screen to add a dot up into the rotating puzzle, but it can get pretty challenging. It is a free download, so you should just try this one out for yourself. I'm a little embarrassed to say I'm at level 25, and I downloaded it this morning. BUT, to my defense I've literally been in bed all day.

3. Instagram

The obvious, Instagram. I have always loved Instagram. I currently am trying to decide between merging my blog Instagram and my personal Instagram. I always forget to log out of my personal account and go post on my blog account, so I might just merge them into one. What do you think? I pretty much love to follow other beauty bloggers, fitness inspiration, home decor inspiration, bloggers in general, business and company accounts, and foodie blogs!

4. Pinterest

This is another obvious one for me. I've been addicted to Pinterest for a while now. I remember my mom showed me this app a few years ago and I thought it sounded so dumb, but once it really took off I realized how amazing it is. The majority of my blog views come from Pinterest, so I love to spend a lot of time here. I have a lot of boards of yummy recipes, style inspiration, home decor, and party planning ideas. Feel free to follow me!

5. Bloglovin'

I'm a blogger, obviously. One of the most unique thing about being a blogger, is the relationship you have with other bloggers. Bloglovin' is an app that basically puts all the blogs you follow into an Instagram feed. You can scroll through the feed and see all of the new posts for the day, you can click on the picture and it will take you to the website to read the post, or you can scroll on by. Blog's are a tough thing to follow and keep up with unless you follow the blogger on Instagram and Facebook and see that they posted a new blog post. Bloglovin' is my favorite way of keeping up when my favorite bloggers post something new. Feel free to follow me on there and see when I post something new!

6. Audible

Audible is an app which you can listen to audio books on. I love to read a normal book, and I never thought I would like listening to them, but it is really convenient! Audible is a subscription service, which you pay for monthly, and you receive a credit, which you can use on any book in the store. Also, if you choose to do more than one book a month, they are at a reduced rate for your second book once you've used your credit. I just finished "Big, Little Secrets" and I loved it. I listened to it in my car on the way home from work everyday, and I was surprised on how much I enjoyed an audio book!

7. Flipp

With the holidays literally around the corner, I still have some last minute shopping to do. I, in general, like to find good deals on things I'm planning on buying, but especially around the holidays. Flipp is an app that rounds up all of the weekly circulars from different stores into an app. Whether you are trying to track down the best deal on an electronic, or simply look at deals at your nearest grocery store, Flipp makes it easy to locate all of the good deals in one place, if you don't receive the weekly paper with the circulars included. This is also great to have with you in the store so you know what is on a good deal, and might not be advertised as on sale!

8. Buzz Feed

Buzz Feed has always been one of my favorite 'time wasting' websites, and when I discovered they had an app, "time wasting" went to a whole new level. I love the app, I can quickly scroll through all of their stories. Some are funny, some are stupid, and some are legit current news. I love their quizzes, which usually result in some form of ridiculous answer, but they are always fun anyways!


Well, there you have it, my current favorite iPhone apps! What are yours? When I upgraded my phone, I chose to go with the 64g option, and I'm NOWHERE even near to halfway full, so I would love to try out some new apps! I love pretty much anything. Leave your favorites down below!

As always, thanks for reading.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Recently Read : Chapter 3

Hello all!

I'm here with another "Chapter" of my recently read series. I just finished "Big Little Lies" by Liane Moriarty.


This book is classified as a mystery book, which are my favorite. This book follows around three main characters, but with a lot of smaller characters thrown in. When I first started this book it was a little hard to keep up because right when I thought I could remember who was who, they would introduce a new couple or group of people. 

This book follows these three ladies, who are all moms of children who are in the same kindergarten class. There is a lot of "he-said, she-said" in this book, which was appropriate since the book was shaped around a group of parents of over achieving kindergarteners in a private school. There is a lot of realistic situations in here about real life parenting, relationships, and friendships. It is so hard to say anything about this book without spoiling it, because the entire book plays a part in the ending.

Pretty quick into the book, the author introduces the fact that somebody dies. It is in the future, and each chapter would begin such as "five weeks before the trivia night", or "7 days before the trivia night". Obviously, the trivia night is where someone dies. I liked the way that this book was formatted because even while the book was at it's low points (more on that later), I knew that something big was coming up, and I know that somebody dies. The entire book you keep wondering who dies, who did it, was it an accident, was it a murder? Then, right at the end, everything ties together and it all unravels. 

Speaking of the low points, I found that there was a few in this book. Like I said above, there is a lot of "he-said, she-said drama" in the book, and at times it would be a little too much, and really hard to follow. I listened to this book instead of reading it, so maybe that might be why it was a little hard to follow, but at times I just wanted to stop reading it.

I'm really glad I stuck with this book, because the "event" that the book leads up to is pretty crazy. As you can tell by the title of the book, there is a lot of "little lies" in the book, that all lead up to a huge deal. 

It is so hard to review a book without spoiling it, but overall I liked this. I wasn't 100% in love with it, and I will admit that I'm excited to start something new. It was a longer book, and at times it got boring for me, but the ending made it worth it. Liane Moriarty also has other books that have been rated very high, so I'm adding those to my list! 

Up next, Dark Places and Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn!


What have you recently read?

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

November Favorites

Happy Tuesday! I can't believe it is already December 2nd, but here I am today to round up my top five beauty products from November! Let's get right to it!


1. Ready Set Gorgeous Foundation by Covergirl

I have been wearing this foundation all throughout November when I wear foundation. I absolutely love this, it is quickly becoming my favorite drugstore foundation. I have combination to oily skin, and this this foundation keeps me matte, but still allowing my natural skin to look very healthy and not dried out, like some "matte" foundations can do. It provides really great coverage, and truly stays on amazing throughout the day. This foundation can be tricky though because you have to find the perfect amount to apply for  your face, if I apply any more than that, it can look a little thick and noticeable on my skin. When I apply a really thin layer though, it is amazing!

2. Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Top Coat

About a month ago, I tested out the Sally Hansen Miracle Gel System (review coming soon). I did have to include the top coat in my favorites though. I will go into more depth in my review on the polish and the top coat, but I truly love this top coat by itself. It works great with the polish that it come with, but it also performs really well over any normal nail polish. I have always loved the top coat from Butter London, but it is around $20, so I am thrilled to find a great top coat from the drugstore!!

3. The Body Shop body butter in Glazed Apple

Mmm. What more can I say? This body butter is so great! I love the body shop products, they smell SO amazing, and really are great moisturizers. I picked up this scent at the airport about a month ago when I noticed they had some new holiday scents. This smells like fresh apples, but with a touch of sweetness. It smells so great and fresh, and I love it! I highly recommend The Body Shop body butters, I grab the small tubs so I can keep them in my purse, and that way I'm not stuck with the same smell for too long! (although I have like 4 in my purse currently, guilty).

4. Smooth Sexy Hair Frizz Eliminator

In the winter, my hair tends to be really frizzy. I never have this problem any other time during the year, but in the winter my hair is a hot mess. I picked this up at ULTA a few months ago and I find myself using it way more than I thought I would. I use this one of two ways. I either use this before I do my hair, if it air dried the night before. This helps smooth out my hair a little bit before trying to style it while it is a frizzy mess. I also will use this after I do my hair, if I feel it needs any smoothing out, especially when it is straightened. I use one pump of this, and really rub it between my hands before touching my hair so I don't pack on too much product.

5. Stila Eyeshadow in "Kitten"

This eyeshadow is a cult favorite for any makeup lover. I rediscovered it recently in my collection and forgot how amazing it is. My "signature" eye look is a really bright lid, with a darkened crease. This shadow gives such a bright lid, with a gorgeous shimmer. If you don't like shimmer eyeshadow, than this color isn't for you. If you do, you have to pick this up!! It is the most finely milled shimmer, that it is so gorgeous and doesn't look "chunky" or "glittery" at all.


Thanks for reading! 

Also, since you are reading this, I want YOUR opinion! I am wanting to move to a more structured blog post schedule after the first of the year. I want to do some fun theme days every week, and some specific posts based on what YOU want to see. Please click on this link, and take this quick survey letting me know what you would like to see more of. It is anonymous, and I will take every answer into consideration, thanks for participating!



Sunday, November 23, 2014

Currently...

It has been such a busy month for me, and if you happened to notice, I took a week off of blogging. To get back into the swing of things, here is what is happening in my life...currently...

Currently Watching:
The AMA's! I love awards shows, my boyfriend thinks they are so dumb, but I just can't get enough of them! And yes, I will have a best/worst dressed post up soon just like I did for the MTV Music Video Awards back in August! Some other shows that I'm currently watching are Survivor, Cutthroat Kitchen, Kourtney and Khloe take the Hamptons, and The Vampire Diaries! : )

Currently Reading: 
I am listening to Big Little Lies on Audible.com currently. I am a little over halfway through. I am still not too sure what I think about it, it hasn't really picked up for me yet, it has been pretty one dimensional. I know that something big happens in the book, so I'm hoping that happens soon and that it picks up. Also, speaking of books (kinda), I saw the movie Gone Girl and I was so impressed with how similar it was to the book! I seriously can't rave enough how much I love her writing, I am going to read Dark Spaces and Sharp Objects after I finish my current book!

Currently Smelling: 
Limenello by Bath and Body Works. It is such a light clean scent, and I'm about halfway through it. I also went back to using the wallflowers from BBW, and they are so amazing! I have Tis' The Season  going in mine (my favorite BBW scent EVER).

Currently Looking Forward to:
The holidays! I just wrapped up my first two courses of Grad School (hence why I have taken a week off of blogging). I get a week off of school, and then I have two more weeks of school, and then two more weeks off! I am looking forward to making some christmas candy with my mom, being able to spend time with family, and start off a new year!

Currently Working On:
Blog scheduling! I am contemplating really bumping up my blog schedule once the new year kicks off, posting more throughout the week, and having a few "theme days" during the week. I am a big planner, so I have to be able to visualize that I can handle all of these posts before I commit to it ;)

Currently Listening To:
I have been loving country still. "Mean To Me" by Brett Eldridge, is my jam right now.

Currently Wanting: 
To chop my hair off! Let me know what you guys think. I'm super scared, but I am getting a little sick of my long hair.

Currently Feeling: 
Content. I am really starting to fall into the swing of my life lately. I am working full time, with grad school on the weekends. When I started grad school, two years seemed like such a long time. There is 8 quarters of school, and I'm already two weeks away from finishing my first quarter. I have a long ways to go, but thinking of the end goal has me so excited.


What's happening in your life currently? ...

Sunday, November 9, 2014

10 Ways To Save On Beauty Products

Hello everyone,

A lot of my friends will wonder how I can have so many products, when I'm not a millionaire or anything. I will always be the first to admit that I very rarely pay full price for a high end makeup product. That meaning, anything that I can't pick up at Target or Rite Aid, I try my hardest not to pay full price, unless it is a holy grail product that I'm okay with spending the money on. Below, I'm going to round up my favorite ways to try out new products for a discounted price, enjoy!



1. TJ Maxx (or other discount retail chains)

TJ Maxx often has really great skincare and body products that you can try for a discounted price. A few brands that they usually always carry that I'm obsessed with are... Elizabeth Arden, Bliss, Philosophy, and so many more. They are usually a pretty good discount, and a really great way to try new products! TJ Maxx also usually has really great hair products, I am not too picky with my hair spray so I will usually pick one up from here when I want to try a newer one because of the prices.

They also carry hot tools, such as blowdryers and flat irons, if you are in the market for one of those. On top of the amazing skincare/body care section, be sure to look up by the registers. They often have really great nail polish discounts. Butter London retails for $18 a bottle and I can usually find them for around $10 at TJ Maxx. Also, my favorite brand, Essie, is usually $4.99 at TJ Maxx and it is regularly $8.50

If I ever have some spare time on my lunch break or during the week, I like to check in on their beauty section, they have great products at great prices. The downside of this is that it is completely random, so although you might get an amazing eye cream for cheap, that doesn't mean it will be there again at that price when you are ready to repurchase it. I luckily am the type of person who loves to switch up their products, so this doesn't affect me much.

Find your nearest TJ Maxx here! 

2. Clearance Sections 

Ulta and Sephora are really great places to shop for high end makeup. In stores, they don't do much clearance, and if they do, it is usually on broken products or discontinued products (in my experience). Although, if you look online, their clearance sections are amazing. There is usually 3-4 pages of clearance on Sephora, and a lot on Ulta. I like to check up on these from time to time, and if something that I have been lusting over ends up on the clearance section, I am much more likely to splurge on it.

Check out ULTA's current clearance section HERE!
Check out SEPHORA's current clearance section HERE!

As far as clearance sections in the drugstore, they usually aren't amazing. Sometimes, limited edition sets will go on clearance which is really nice. The other day, Loreal had some clearance lip glosses for $3.98 a bottle. They were from a limited edition line from the summer, and they looked in perfect condition. Target was offering a $5 gift card when you buy two Loreal products. I bought two clearance lip glosses for roughly $8, and got $5 back.



3. Value Sets

Value sets are a really great way to be able to try multiple products from a brand, for a low price. The products are usually much smaller than full size, but it allows you to try out all the products for a while to decide if you like them enough to purchase. Ulta and Sephora usually have the best value sets. Both websites have a specific section for value sets.

Usually if I am wanting to purchase a certain foundation or eyeliner, I will first go see if I can find it in a value set somewhere. If I can try it out in a smaller size, but also receive an eyeliner, eyeshadow, and mascara with it, it is a much more appealing purchase.

ALSO, if you combine a value set with my last strategy, clearance sections, you can often find amazing deals. Value sets go on clearance a lot online, so finding one of those on clearance is like finding gold, it truly is a deal you can't pass up!

For example, here is a value set I picked up just recently. I paid $39 for this set. The Urban Decay eyeshadow retails for $20, and the Stila eyeliner retails for $20 also. I paid $40, which is the total of two of these products so it was basically like getting the NARS blush, BB Cream, Lipstick, and deluxe Mascara for free. AND it came in a cute gold makeup bag that I am currently using on a weekend trip right now.

Check out ULTA's Value Set section HERE!
Check out SEPHORA's Value Set section HERE!

4. Subscription Boxes

People have different opinions of subscription boxes, but I love them! Basically, you pay a flat rate either monthly/quarterly and you receive a box of products! There is no strategy to receiving certain products, it is random. This is a great way to try out new products for a really low cost ($10 a month for 4-5 sample, sometimes full sized, products). There are also higher value boxes, where you know you will be getting higher end products and the value of the box outweighs the cost of the box.

If you are the type of person who won't use smaller samples, and doesn't like to try new things, then I wouldn't recommend a subscription service to you. Like I've stated before, I love trying new things, so subscription services are right up my alley. I haven't had to purchase an eyeliner in over a year because I receive so many of them in boxes! : )

Here are the boxes that I have been subscribed to for a long time and would highly recommend.

Birchbox ($10 a month)
Ipsy ($10 a month)
FabFitFun ($49.99 every 3 months)

If you want to see how Ipsy and Birchbox compare, check out my "Subscription Boxes" tab at the top of my website and you can check out all of my reviews.

5. Coupons

Good ole' fashion coupons ladies ;) If you are a drugstore makeup gal, than make sure to look for some coupons. Magazines often have great coupons for certain brands, and especially for new products.

Products also sometimes have coupons ON THE BOX, for immediate discounts at the register so make sure to look for those because the cashiers often won't catch it either. They are usually little stickers on the front or back of the product.

The boxes of products sometimes have coupons for future purchases inside the box. Be sure to look out for those also. If you specifically shop at Rite Aid, or Walgreens, you can print coupons off their website also. It also doesn't hurt to check out specific brands Facebook Pages or Websites to see if they have any free coupons they are offering to print off.

6. QVC/HSN

Okay I feel a little like my mom here, because I never thought I would order off of a home shopping network... But it is amazing. They often carry a lot of the brands that I'm in love with (Philosophy, Bobbi Brown, Tarte, Too Faced, Benefit). I don't watch the actual shows, but I love looking on their websites at what deals they currently have.

For example, I love Philosophy's Purity face wash. 8oz is $23 at Sephora. QVC has a 32oz bottle for $52. I know I love this product so much and it is one of the only face washes I use. Buying the value size from QVC would save me $40. So it doesn't hurt to look on QVC/HSN for either value sizes like this example, or for value kits where they combine a bunch of products at a great price.

I would only recommend this if you KNOW it is a product you love and won't regret having 32oz of. They also just have great bundles of products and great specials on products, especially when they first launch. It is a place I never thought to look for makeup but have ordered a handful of things from just because of the deals and specials that they run.

7. Back to Mac
If you are a M.A.C. Cosmetics shopper, be sure you know about the Back to MAC program. If you bring 5 empty mac containers to their store you can exchange it for a free lipstick. I know not everyone is a MAC lover, but I am. This is basically exchanging your trash for an $18 value. You can't beat that. I just keep my empty products in a little drawer because it takes a while to hit that 5 product mark, but it is seriously money for your garbage, score!

8. Email Newsletters

If you have good self control, than this is a great idea for you. Make sure you sign up for email newsletters at all of your favorite brands. I have mine come to my normal email, but you could even set up a separate email address for brand emails. I am so surprised at how often a certain website will have a flash sale, where the whole website is 20% for the whole day, or free shipping on a holiday weekend. Like I said, it takes some self control because you don't want to place an order every time you get a discount email, or else I'd be broke.

9. Try before you Buy

This one seems self explanatory, but it is SO true. If you are shopping at a Sephora, Ulta, MAC, Nordstrom, Macys, be sure to ask for a sample of a product. I have gone into a store before dead set on buying a new foundation, because I had read so many amazing reviews from people I share similar opinions with. I asked for a sample, took it home, and HATED IT. Some stores have great return policies, but some don't. Don't be shy to ask for a sample. I like to only ask for 1 every visit, because I don't like to push the boundaries. If you are specifically at a store for a new concealer or foundation, an employee would be more than happy to get you samples of a few to try out at home before you buy.

Also, if you are shopping the drugstore, there isn't a sample option. I would recommend taking a quick google search on your smart phone of a product and read a few quick reviews from bloggers on their thoughts. We all are usually pretty honest about how a product works, and while the packaging and advertising might be amazing, a quick google search could confirm that the majority of people who tried the product you're looking at have hated it!

10. Wait For a Holiday 

I think if you are a product hoarder like I am, it is extremely important to be able to differentiate between something you want and something you need. Like I said above, I keep a list on my phone of things that I'm wanting to try, or to review for my blog. I will then keep my eyes out and wait for things to go on sale. Online stores usually have sales around any major holiday such as Veterans Day, Labor Day, 4th of July, Thanksgiving, Black Friday (Cyber Monday!!), Christmas, New Years. If you can wait it out until you can grab something on sale, you will be able to save some great money! I think the important thing about all of these tips is to be smart with buying the products you want, so you never have to worry about affording the products you truly need.. Which brings me to my last and final tip...

BE SMART

My last tip here, is to be smart. If you get a bunch of discounts on products you'll never use, you're really not saving any money in the long run. I keep a list on my phone of products I'm currently lusting over. I discover a lot of products by reading my friends' blogs and finding out about products they are loving. I will add something to my list and then that will allow me to keep an eye out for a discount. I don't like to make immediate decisions on beauty products, since I have so many, I don't like things just sitting and not getting used. Don't go on QVC and buy 32oz bottles of all the products you own, you'll never go through them. There are plenty of ways to save money on makeup though, you just have to be looking, and be smart : )

Well there you have it, my top 10 ways to save money on beauty products. These are all things that I have personally done and will continue to do. I'm sure there is many more ways to save money on products, but I wanted to share ones that are realistic, and truly save you some bucks!

As always, thanks so much for reading.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

ClassPass Seattle

Hi Everyone!

Recently, I have learned about a new service, called ClassPass. When I heard of this company, I immediately thought "this is brilliant, why hasn't this been around longer?!" So I'm going to sum up what ClassPass is today, and give you all the information you need if you are interested in trying it out.

What is it? 

ClassPass is a monthly "membership" to participate in fitness classes at MULTIPLE fitness studios in your area! You pay a monthly fee (more on that later) and you can try out different classes at a range of fitness studios in your area that you don't have to have a traditional gym membership at. Here is an article from Glamour Magazine summarizing it really well, and providing some more details!

How Much Does it Cost?

It is $99 a month. This gets you unlimited classes for the month, with the only exception being that you can take a maximum of three classes per studio, per month. Once you see the city map of studios that welcome ClassPass members, you'll quickly realize that is no problem that you can only use each studio three times a month. A traditional spin class in a larger city can cost you upwards to $30, sometimes more.

How Does it Work?

Once you sign up, you will be on monthly cycles. If you were to sign up today, November 5th, your next month would start on December 5th. During that month, you can take up to three classes per studio near you. You "reserve" your spot in a class on the ClassPass website. There website is really simple to work, you click on a studio, and it will show you all of the classes they offer, with the corresponding times. You then reserve your spot in the class you would like.

Are There Any Hidden Fees? 

They do have cancellation fees, and no-show fees, which is understandable. You have 24 hours to cancel a class reservation, and if you don't have 24 hours notice, there is a $20 fee. Also, if you don't show up to a class you reserved, it is the same $20 fee. This fee might sound a little annoying, but you are taking up a spot on a reservation list, so it is important to give 24 hours notice so somebody else can sign up for the class!

What Do I Think?

Well, the theory of this company is amazing. I think it is such a brilliant idea. It just launched in Seattle, Washington. Literally, just launched. The company was generous enough to let me try ClassPass for one month, so I will be trying out some classes and letting you all know how the actual process of it all went a month from now! There are 69 studios that welcome ClassPass members in the Seattle/Tacoma area. This is a little bit of a commute for me, but I will be trying out some of the studios closest to me this month.

So what do you all think? Is this something you would pay for? With the holidays coming up, I think it would be a great way to really take unlimited classes, and with 69 studios offered in Seattle, you're bound to find a class that works any time you are available!

I can't wait to report back in one month how the process of reserving classes, and taking classes went. Until then, feel free to check out their website for more information, or you can check out their FAQ section here. 


As always, thanks for reading


Sunday, November 2, 2014

October Favorites

Hi all, can't believe it is already November! Although that means I will wrap up my current favorite items that I discovered during October. Here we go! 



1. Exfoliating Facial Cleansing Towlettes - Burts Bees

I love these so much. I have a particular wipe that I love to use to remove my makeup, but I also use them in the morning to quickly cleanse my face because I am much more lazy with my skincare in the morning. First off, these smell SO good. It is the most delicious peach smell, and I love it in the morning because it is very refreshing. The exfoliating aspect of it isn't as amazing as using an exfoliator, but it is definitely great for every day because it isn't too intense. 

2. Marc Jacobs Eyeliner in Black

I have been loving this eyeliner lately. It stays on really well, applies really smooth, and doesn't require a sharpener! I love twist up eyeliners, it is just much more convenient. It is a little spendy, but stays really well, I love it! I haven't tried anything else from Marc Jacobs new line, but definitely wanting to try more, really great quality!

3. Bath and Body Works Wallflowers

I am such a candle girl, I love burning candles. I have been extremely busy lately, which doesn't leave much time at home to burn my candles. I picked up a few of these wallflowers a few weeks ago and have been obsessed. They are such strong scents, and you can leave them plugged in all of the time. That is the best part, that my room can smell amazing all day without having to burn a candle. Currently I have Pumpkin Caramel Latte plugged in, but will soon plug in Tis the Season, which is my FAVORITE Bath and Body Works smell ever, ever, ever!

4. Pacifica Roll-On Perfume in Indian Coconut Nectar

I usually don't like roll-on perfume, but I have been obsessed with this one lately. I have thrown this in my purse and I find myself using it way more than I expected. It smells like vanilla coconut to me, but not too sweet. I have gotten a lot of random compliments when I wear this asking what I'm wearing, which never happens because I often don't wear strong scents. With a roll-on perfume, I put some on the inside of my wrists, sides of my neck, and inside of my elbows (those are the hot spots for perfume if you didn't know). I have been loving this, and it is super affordable!

5. Dior Creme De Rose Lip Balm

I just wrote an entire post about all of my favorite lip balms, but I have to mention this guy again. I am so obsessed, I have already made a dent and I haven't even had it that long. It is such a luxurious product, smells amazing, and works amazing. I apply it in the morning while getting ready, and throughout the day if I am at home. Completely loving this, and if you are in the market for a new lip balm, this might be a great one to ask for, for Christmas!


OTHER FAVORITES: 

Television Favorites: 

I finally caught up with The Vampire Diaries, which I am just completely obsessed with. All 5 seasons are now on Netflix, and the 6th season is currently playing. I am now caught up with live television, which reminds me how much I hate waiting for a new episode ; ) Also loving Survivor this season, is anyone else watching it? I love it every season, it never lets me down!

Book Favorites: 

I am working on Big Little Lies right now from Liane Moriarty. It is pretty good so far, I'm listening to it from Audible, which is an app that allows you to listen to books. I have been listening on my morning commute to work, which I am actually really enjoying. Next on my reading list are Sharp Objects and Dark Places by Gillian Flynn.

Fashion Favorites: 

I have found a shirt from Target which I am obsessed with. They are V-Neck shirts, offered in a few different colors. They are very flowy and long, and perfect for layering in the fall. They go for $12 which I think is great, I have one in olive green (my favorite clothing color) and one in black. I definitely need to pick up a couple more because they are perfect with leggings, boots, and a scarf! You can find them online here! 

Thanks for reading! Next Sunday's post will be all about how to find the best deals on beauty products! Stay tuned : )

Sunday, October 26, 2014

True Life : I'm Addicted to Lip Balm

When a normal person thinks about lip balm, they probably think that you just need one tube of chapstick, and when you run out you will buy another one. Right? Wrong.

Me, being totally not normal, think that I instead need a million different kinds, and always have 3-4 on me to choose from. I promise it all makes sense in my mind, but I have a serious obsession with chapstick/lip balm/lip treatments of any kind. Today I'm going to talk about the ones that I love and which ones are worth the splurge. These are in no particular order, I instead sorted them by purpose (because there is many purposes to chapstick, right?) Right.


Day to Day Chapstick:

For day to day, I don't like anything too heavy. Heavier lip balms (which we will dive into later) can often look like you have a lot of medication on your lips, and it isn't a good look.



1. Sugar Advanced Therapy by Fresh
My number one favorite, this baby. It is such an amazing lip balm. It is so luxurious, and worth every penny. I haven't gone through a whole tube yet but will repurchase when I do. It is a little more on the medicated side of lip balm, instead of just being fruity and smell good. This is really great in the winter, and when applied consistently can really help my dry lips. It has a really nice lemon-lime type smell, and it is my absolute favorite!!

2. Nivea Olive Oil & Lemon
If I had to recommend a single lip balm that you could pick up from a drugstore, this would be it! Nivea makes really great lip balms, that feel really nice, but are super affordable. This is a very practical day to day lip balm since it is so cheap, but still delivers really great moisture. I love every flavor they have in this line, the Milk and Honey one is really great!

3. Baby Lips Dr. Rescue by Maybelline
This is really similar to the one above. Great quality, for a cheap price. It is more of a "treatment" lip balm, so again it is really great in the winter. I don't like the normal Maybelline Baby Lips line, but the Dr. Rescue line is actually pretty great!

4. Noya lip balm in Cherry
I got this lip balm in an Ipsy bag along time ago, and I love it so much. It is the smoothest lip balm ever, and smells sooooo good of cherry. It is an all natural brand, and I believe you can only order from their website. Obviously I don't need any more lip balm, but I wouldn't be disappointed if I received another one from Noya in a future Ipsy bag.

Overnight Treatments:

If you really want to take good care of your lips, it is important to apply lip balm before you go to sleep at night. A regular lip balm will do great things for your lips, but one targeted for overnight treatment is what is really going to make a difference in the dryness and hydration of your lips.




1. Agave Lip Mask by Bite Beauty
My favorite in this category. I actually have an entire review of this lip balm (my first blog post ever), so you can read that here. But I will sum it up by saying, it is worth every penny, and really helps my lips stay moisturized through the night even though I sleep with a fan on, and I breathe through my mouth, which are two things guaranteed to dry your lips out.

2. Yes to Coconuts Hydrate and Restore Lip Oil
This is more of an oil, than a "mask" like the one above. It is a really great affordable option, that can still help you keep that moisture overnight. This is under $10 in the drugstore, smells great, and really feels good on the lips. Every once in a while I will switch it up and use this one, and I'm surprised at the similarities it has to the mask above. My lips are pretty hydrated in the morning, not as much as with the Agave Mask, but it is also a third of the price.

3. Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm in Natural Mint
They have a few different flavors in this, they are yummy. Available at Ulta, and fairly affordable, this is a great option for anyone wanting to purchase their first medicated lip balm. It is also a skincare line targeted for men, so it is a great one to get your man to use to keep his lips nice and soft too!

4. Philosophy Kiss Me Tonight
This was my first overnight lip balm I purchased. It actually is almost gone, but I kept the container because I knew I was doing this post soon. It is another spendy one, but I can say that it is worth the money. It smells good, feels good, and is still working when you wake up in the morning. I truly believe you get what you pay for, and when you are looking for something to hydrate your lips for 8+ hours, it's worth the splurge.

Potted Lip Balms:

Some lip balms come in the form of a pot, which requires you to use your finger to dig out the product. Some people don't like this form of lip balm, but I love it. I usually apply one of these right when I wake up as I'm getting ready. They are usually heavier than a day to day chapstick, but not as heavy as an overnight balm.


1. Christian Dior Creme De Rose
I just got a few weeks ago, so I feel a little hypocritical including this here, but I can already tell that I love it. It smells like roses, which is so luxurious, and it feels amazing on my lips. I've applied it every morning since I've got it, and I really love it. It is definitely a luxury product, and I can't quite say if it is worth the money yet since I just received it, but it has AMAZING reviews so I'm looking forward to using it more.

2. C.O. Bigelow Rose Salve
This is actually a multi purpose salve, that can be used for dry skin anywhere. On your knees, elbows, cuticles, or face. I love it as a lip balm, and a cuticle balm. It is really cheap, and great that it is multipurpose! It is a great comparison to the Dior one above. Obviously not as great quality, it is a sixth of the price, but it is still great and I'd recommend it! I got mine at Sephora, it is around $5.

3. Elf Conditioning Lip Balm
I love this, it smells amazing and feels amazing. As you can tell, I have higher end lip balms, so this $3 lip balm doesn't really stand a chance. As far as recommending it to somebody though, it is really great! I will admit I barely reach for it, because I have so many options, but it is so great for the price point. I believe they have different colors too, mine is a nude color.

4. The Body Shop Lip Butters in Mango and Coconut
If you ever want a product that smells TRULY like it is called, then you should make your way to your nearest Body Shop. Their products are so true to smell, they are too fun not to use. This mango lip butter smells so strong of mangoes, and they are equally amazing quality.


Lip Scrubs:

I think it is important to know that if you are suffering from dry cracked lips, lip balm can only do so much. You really need to scrub off the dead skin and dry skin, and then start being consistent with moisturizing. Picture a wall with pieces of old wallpaper on it, you wouldn't paint over that and expect the pieces of wallpaper to disappear would you? Same with your lips, you need to scrub your lips so you can proceed with moisturizing healthy lips. I have only tried a few, but I'm sure there are many amazing ones out there. It doesn't need to be fancy, it just needs to be rough enough to scrub your lips and convenient enough that you'll actually use it.

1. Philosophy Peppermint Stick Lip Scrub
This is my favorite lip scrub. I find that I use it the most because it smells good, and works good. I love making a DIY lip scrub (you will see down below), but sometimes you just don't have the time and need something quick.

2. DIY Vanilla Brown Sugar Scrub
I love this scrub, it is amazing. Like I said above though, sometimes you just don't have the time to make a lip scrub. This one is extremely easy, I have an entire blog post about it, you can check it out here if you want to know how to make it!



Well there you have it, my favorite lip treating products! Obviously I'm a little obsessed with soft lips, but I feel like everyone should! If you want to take some steps to healthier lips, you don't have to splurge on these products. Here is an easy routine to get your lips back to healthy.

1. SCRUB - This is essential. You can DIY one (linked above) with products already in your pantry. Or simply use a toothbrush with some warm water and sugar. It doesn't take a luxury scrub, your lips just need scrubbed.

2. MOISTURIZE - that is it. You need to moisturize before your lips go dry. It is just like drinking water, if you feel thirsty, you have gone too long without water. If your lips get dry, you've gone too long without balm. Find one that you like and is convenient for you, and apply it. That is all there is to it :)


As always, thanks for reading
xoxo, jaimie

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Perfectly Posh Review!

Recently I had the opportunity to review some products from Perfectly Posh. Perfectly Post is an independent sales company, similar to a Mary Kay or Avon for better reference. They are all naturally based. All of their products are free of sulfates, parabens, lanolin, and phthalates. Their products are also made in the U.S.A and are cruelty free! 

products below were sent to Glitter with Grace in exchange for an honest review. As always, anything written on my blog is 100% my personal opinion, regardless of whether the products were sent to me or not. 

Since this is an independent sales company, you buy the products through a rep. It is okay if you don't personally know a Perfectly Posh rep, because I know a great one! Her name is Crystal, and she so generously provided me with the below products to sample. You can check out her page here, and find out what other products Perfectly Posh has to offer! 

This is a body scrub made with chunky sea salt, peppermint, and rosemary. It exfoliates skin to remove dead skin cells, dry layers, and reveal tighter, nourished skin. First off, it smells amazing. It smells like straight up peppermint, which is so refreshing. When I sampled this product, I just happened to have really bad allergies, and the peppermint in my shower was so refreshing for my sinuses! It is a strong smell, but I loved it. The chunky sea salt, is truly chunky. It was almost a little too chunky for my liking, but overall I loved this sample. This retails for $24. 


Okay, their names are just amazing aren't they? This was a really great hand cream. It is really moisturizing but not greasy at all. The fragrance is "exotic flowers and sandalwood" but it just smells really fresh to me. I really liked this, it is one of their best sellers on their site. It retails for $9 and it is the perfect size to throw in your purse. 


This is a charcoal loaded detox bath bar that cleans and moisturizes skin with luxurious lather without sulfates or other drying agents. This was such a unique product. First off, it retails for $9, so not terrible, but still kind of spendy for a bar of soap. Oh but wait, this is a little more than just a bar of soap. My skin felt super moisturized after using this, and didn't feel tight like I normally feel after using a bar of soap (I'm a body wash type of girl). I did really like this, but not more than my normal body wash. If you are a true "bar soap" user, then you might really like this, and I'd recommend trying it!!


When I read that the fragrance of this was Wasabi and Ginger, I was a little put off. But, I actually love it! It is so fruity but not too sweet, ugh I seriously love this smell! It is a really nice body butter, not too thick, but thicker than your normal lotion. I am probably going to purchase the full size of this from Crystal, I think it would be a great one to use right after the shower!


Well there you have it, my review on the four products that the lovely Crystal sent me! I was really impressed with their products overall. Here are some final points about Perfectly Posh products.

1. I love supporting independent sales companies. As a small business owner, I have a strong appreciation to women who sell products on their own, just a personal opinion but I love supporting these companies.

2. I love that they are all natural! Their products don't have any chemicals in them which should be important for everyone. I know it is close to impossible to eliminate every chemical that you use but being able to find great products that don't have them is great!

3. The pricing, is back and forth. Some of their products seem like a really great value, coming it at under $12 for a body product. Some of the products, like the chunky scrub above, go upwards to $24. The products that are a little more expensive are their best sellers, and also I believe a higher quality product. I think this is a great thing though because anyone can find something they like from Perfectly Posh that fits their price range.

4. The brand is so cute. Great smells, fun names, and cute packaging. I recommend checking out Crystals website, because it is just such a cute brand. I am looking forward to placing an order soon and supporting Perfectly Posh.

As always, thanks for reading
xoxo, Jaimie




Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Ulta Holiday Beauty Sets 2014

My favorite part of the holiday season, is when all of my favorite brands release their holiday value sets. It is a great way to sample a few products, and some others, for the price of one product.

If you've never bought a value set before, they are usually deluxe size samples, or mini sized products. All brands will vary with the value included, and whether there are full size products included, but that is all the fun of finding a good steal around the holidays!

Ulta usually has the best value sets, I just went through the entire website and was a little overwhelmed when I saw how many tabs I had open with amazing values!! These are in no order, and  are all clickable links in the title.

1. BareMinerals Lip Spectacular - $26
Here you get to try out six colors of the Marvelous Moxie lip glosses for a little over the price of one! They are 0.07 ounces each, and a full size gloss (which I've tried and loved), is .15 oz. So this is Practically three full size glosses, a $54 value!

This is a $90 value, with six FULL SIZE lip glosses! Now I've never tried these glosses, so I can't speak much to the quality of them, but it is definitely worth looking up reviews if these are colors you can see yourself wearing. Their lip glosses aren't cheap, but this value set puts them at $5 each, which is cheaper than drugstore lip gloss!
You get six of Benefits most popular blushes in this holiday box set! The only down side is that they are inside this box, so every time you want to use one you have to bust this big box out. But when they are only $6 each, it is kind of worth it! It has a perfect 5 star review on Ulta, so this looks like a great steal!

This is a unique value kit. First off, it comes with Stila's famous "Kitten" eyeshadow. This eyeshadow has been a best seller for years, and goes for $18 on its own. Then it comes with three full size lip glosses from Stila. I've never tried these glosses, but they don't look amazing to me. On top of that, you get an adorable bracelet from Bauble Bar (love that site) and a $10 gift card to Bauble Bar. This might make for a really fun gift!


This value set is on the spendy side, but it really packs a great value! For starters, you get 18 full size Tarte Eyeshadows. On top of that, you get 4 full size blushes (they are amazing quality), the rest of the products are considered "Deluxe Size", and this is a $410 value!!! Also, it comes with a magnetic compact, that you can pop the eyeshadows and blushes into for traveling or your purse, I love it!


Another great Tarte set, they are amazing around the holidays! This one includes three deluxe size products. Their best selling eye cream, cheek stain, and maracuja oil! I have had over three huge bottles of their Maracuja Oil, I love it! This is a great way to try a few of their products, for a very reasonable price!



Well there you have it, my top picks! There are SO many more amazing value kits online at Ulta, and I know Sephora will release some soon also. Like I said above, they are a great way to try out new products without spending too much! 

As always, thanks for reading
xoxo, Jaimie




Friday, October 10, 2014

Crack Dip : Glitter with Grace Cooks #1

You know how everyone has that recipe? The one that everyone always asks "What is in this?!, Will you make this for our potluck next week?!, Can I have this recipe?!"  Well, this is that recipe for me.

This is a chip dip, that is so addicting, it is named "Crack Dip". I have made this so many times, and the bowl is cleared every time. There is 4 ingredients, and there is 4 steps. It is a great dip that you can bring to any event that is affordable and quick to make! If you would like to see the recipe with no pictures, scroll to the very bottom.

Ingredients:

16oz Sour Cream
1 Packet (3 Tbsp) Dry Ranch Seasoning
1 Cup Cheddar Cheese
3oz Bacon


Step One:

Empty your sour cream into your mixing bowl. It is totally possible to mix this in the same bowl that you will serve it in, but I mix in a separate bowl so that my serving bowl is nice and clean.

Step Two:

Mix in your ranch seasoning. If you buy it by the packet, then empty one packet into your sour cream. We buy it in the jar, so it is equal to 3 tablespoons. Fold this into your sour cream until it is all mixed together.

Step Three:

Mix in your cheese. The recipe calls for one cup, I usually put a little more than that. In my recipe, I want every bite to have bacon and cheese in it, so I think 1 1/2 cups of cheese is a better call. For good measure, add one cup at a time and you can visually decide how much more to add. 

Step Four:

BACON. Yep, throw it all in. You can put in your choice of bacon bits, or real bacon. The main compliment I get on this dip is how good the bacon is in it. I buy "Real Bacon Pieces" from the store and they are delicious. I think traditional bacon bits would be a little too hard and "fake" in this recipe, so if you can find these bacon pieces, then definitely use those!!


Mix that all together, and you are done!! I then move it into the bowl that I will be serving it in, and flatten it all out and then toss it in the refrigerator. It needs to be refrigerated for 4-6 hours, but the longer that it is refrigerated the better it is! I try to let mine sit at least 12 hours, or overnight at least.

There you have it, the easiest dip recipe, that you will be constantly begged to bring to every event! It is so addicting, and simple. I haven't had anybody who has tried this and not liked it, it is simple, and delicious. I serve mine with Fritos Scoops which it is the best with, but I've served it before with Ritz crackers, or tortilla chips.

If you recreate this receipe, PLEASE take a picture and let me know how it worked out! Hashtag #glitterwithgracecooks on instagram, twitter, or facebook so I can see!

FULL RECIPE:

Ingredients :
16oz Sour Cream
1 Packet (3 tablespoons) Dry Ranch Seasoning
1-2 Cups Cheese (your preference)
3oz Bacon

1. Put sour cream in large mixing bowl
2. Add in your ranch seasoning, and fold it into the sour cream until it is all mixed together.
3. Add in your cheese, one cup at a time so you can see how much you prefer in your dip.
4. Add in your bacon and mix.
5. Transfer it into your serving bowl, and refrigerate for 4-6 hours at least. (12 hours recommended)

As always, thanks for reading
xoxo, Jaimie

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Birchbox vs. Ipsy - September 2014

One of my more popular posts is every month when I compare Birchbox vs. Ipsy. Septembers post is coming pretty late, but it's here now! Unfortunately, I wasn't extremely thrilled by either box, and I think that might be what kept postponing me writing this blog post. So keep your eyes peeled, because Octobers post will be up soon since this one is going up late.

If you haven't heard of these before, they are both monthly subscription services that deliver a bundle of products to you monthly. The products range from sample size, to full size, and the value of the bag/box always varies. Each service is $10 a month, and here I am to compare which one I enjoyed more this month.


Up first, Birchbox. I've said before in previous posts, Birchbox is the original subscription box. They do tend to send smaller samples, but they are a very successful company with great consistency, and a wonderful reward system online. You can check out more about Birchbox here. 



1. Yu-Be Moisturizing Skin Cream
Full Size Value : $16.00 for 1.25oz
Sample Size : 1 oz
Verdict : I tried this the other night and it wasn't bad. It  is a pretty thick moisturizer, so I will only be using it at night. It is a great sample size that I can get quite a few uses out of. I won't be purchasing the full size just because I have other moisturizers that I love.

2. Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser
Full Size Value : $32.95 for 4oz
Sample Size : 0.2oz
Verdict : I haven't tried this yet, but I'm super excited to try it. The fact that it is a foaming exfoliator is really intriguing to me, and it smells great. It is a pretty small sample, I'm assuming I can only use this once or twice, but I'm excited to try it. It is pretty expensive so I'm hoping it is a good quality exfoliator.

3. Ruffian Nail Lacquer in the color Naked
Full Size Value : $10.00
Sample Size : FULL SIZE
Verdict : I have received this nail polish in Birchbox before and really enjoyed the formula. This is a good color, and I'm generally happy about receiving this in my box. The value of the nail polish pays for the box this month, so I'm excited about that. This also came with a nail polish remover wipe, which I  used before taking the pictures for this post. I DIDN'T like the wipe at all, it was greasy and smelled really bad.

4. Noir Cosmetics Long-Wear Eyeliner
Full Size Value : $15.00
Sample Size : FULL SIZE
Verdict : Extremely happy about receiving this in my box this month. I honestly don't know the last time I purchased a black eyeliner, because right when I get around to needing one, I receive one in a subscription box! I am not picky with pencil eyeliner at all, so I'm happy to have received a full size liner in my box this month.

5. Dr. Brandt Pores No More Vacuum Cleaner 
Full Size Value : $45 for 1oz
Sample Size : ?? .. small ;)
Verdict : The sample doesn't have a size on it, but it is a smaller sample for sure. I am looking forward to trying this, simply because the name sounds so disgusting but so awesome. Dr. Brandt is a really well known skin care brand so I'm looking forward to trying this and expecting it to be nice quality.

Up next, Ipsy. Ipsy comes in a makeup bag every month, as you can see up in the photo above. Ipsy tends to have smaller brands, but bigger samples. I usually like Ipsy more than Birchbox, but you never know!! Also, the brands that you get in Ipsy often give a coupon code that you can use at their site for the month, which is a really great bonus.


1. Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair Deep Conditioning Mask
Full Size Value : $26 for 5.25oz
Sample Size : 1oz
Verdict : I haven't used this yet, but will be soon. It doesn't have much of a smell to it, but it is very thick which is common for deep conditioning masks. It has pretty good reviews on Sephora so I'm looking forward to trying it. I still swear by the Loreal Total Repair 5 deep conditioning mask that I know I would never purchase this, but excited to try it!

2. Hikari Lipstick in Cabarnet
Full Size Value : $13
Sample Size : FULL SIZE
Verdict : I love this lipstick! It is such a pretty red for fall, and it looks great with my skin tone! The main reason I love Ipsy is that they actually put full size makeup in their bags and it makes it completely worth it. Very happy to see a great lipstick in my bag!

3. Pacifica Natural Eye Pencil in Fringe
Full Size Value : $11
Sample Size : FULL SIZE
Verdict : Like I said earlier for my birchbox, I love getting eyeliners in my subscriptions! I use eyeliner daily, and for some reason I don't like purchasing them so receiving them in my bag is really nice! I love brown eyeliner, and Pacifica is a great brand that you get at Target!

4. LeeAni Eco 3 in 1 Revolution
Full Size Value : $18 for 2oz
Sample Size : This sample doesn't have a size on it, but it is enough to use a handful of times.
Verdict : This is an individual company, that I have never heard of. Their website looks like they have some pretty innovative skincare. This product claims to be a toner, serum, and moisturizer in one. I'm really looking forward to using this and seeing what it is all about.

5. Crown Brush C476 Brush
Full Size Value : $17.50
Sample Size : FULL SIZE
Verdict : I love this brush!! I've used it almost every day since getting my bag. Crown Brush is a really great brand for brushes, and I loved seeing a brush in my bag this month. Makeup brushes are something that I would always be happy to get, since you can never have too many. It was a great value, and I'm super happy to have received it!!


Final Verdict

This month, Ipsy won. I wasn't overly excited about either box, but the lipstick and the makeup brush were enough for Ipsy to win this month.

Interested in seeing previous months?
- May
- June
- July
- August


As always, thanks for reading!
xoxo, Jaimie

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Top 10 Darker Nail Polishes for Fall and Winter

I have always preferred darker nail polish, so when fall rolls around I get extra excited to be able to wear dark nails and feel appropriate. I made the official switch today from bright nails to dark nails, and I thought it would be the perfect time to round up my top 10 fall/winter nail polish shades. What are your favorite fall/winter shades? Let me know down below!




I swatched each color on my nail, because they look so different on the actual nail. If you click on the title of each polish, it will take you to the website where you can get a better view of the color, price, and where to purchase.

Okay, onto the first five.




1. "Bobbing for Baubles" by Essie
This color is a very pretty blue/gray color. The brand describes it as "the deepest, darkest sapphire blue" This color is picking up a little bit of green, but it is definitely more blue, like the first picture when they are shown in the bottles. This is a very nice formula, completely opaque in just one coat, but even better with two coats. Essie is my favorite formula, so obviously I'm a little bias here. This is a great color for everyday wear, it isn't too dark, but still fall appropriate. This is also very "office appropriate"

2. "Odette" by Zoya
This is a great mauve-purple color for fall. It isn't too bright, but still a way to incorporate a lighter color into the darker months. It is appropriate for all ages, my mom tends to borrow this one sometimes as she doesn't like to have anything too bright on her nails. This is also a very opaque shade, all you need is one coat. Zoya is a great brand, toxic and paraben free, I've loved all the shades I've tried from Zoya!

3. "Rodeo Drive Royalty" by NCLA
You have to have a good red nail polish when you're approaching the winter months with all of the holidays. This color is such a true red, but it can also turn a little darker if you choose to apply more coats. I like this formula, but not as much as Essie, so I'm definitely adding a "true red" to my shopping list from Essie. NCLA polishes are $16 a bottle, and Essie is $8 so I would definitely recommend a red from Essie such as "Really Red" or "Lacquered Up"/

4. "Because You're Worth It" by L'Oreal
First off, the name of this polish was enough to make me add it to my collection, but the polish is equally as amazing. It is a great formula, and such a gorgeous gold shimmer polish. It isn't too shimmery, you could definitely wear this on all 10 nails and not look like you're headed to your first middle school dance. It is a very "classy" shimmer polish, and definitely great for all of those holiday parties that come up in the winter!

5. "Neve" by Zoya
Another Zoya polish, they are so great! This is such a gorgeous blue color that has a touch of shimmer in it. It isn't too dark when it is on the nail so it is perfect for work or everyday wear. Like I said above, I love Zoya's formula, the polish stays for a long time and you truly only need one coat, I always do two for maximum wear, but their formula is truly so great.

Okay, onto the next five.



6. "For The Twill of It" by Essie
This color is probably the most unique color I have in my collection, and unfortunately in this photo, it doesn't do it justice at all. Lucky for you all, I've done an entire blog post about this color and showing photos from all different angles because this polish looks different at every angle, and under different lights. It is such an amazing polish, so you can check it out here!

7. "Power Clutch" by Essie
This is in my top ten polishes ever, which might not sound that great, but I have A LOT of nail polish, so thats a tough group to fall into. This is just a gray polish. Nothing more, nothing less. It has no shimmer, no shine, and no special finish. It is a plain, gray polish, and that is why I love it! It is such a consistent, go-to polish for me. It is the closest to black polish that I can wear without wearing black polish. I absolutely love it, and of course, love the formula. #EssieLover  ps: online, Essie says it is a gray/green, but the bottle I have has always been straight up gray.

8. Essie
So, funny story, I picked out my favorite polishes, took all the pictures, and then started writing. When I picked up this polish to write down the name, the name sticker isn't on the bottle. I don't know the name of this polish, which sucks, but I'm going to talk about it anyways because it is already in the pictures! It is a gorgeous red color, with swirls of silver shimmer (you can really see them in the pictures of the bottles). I love this color as it is a darker burgundy red! Sorry for the name fluke, I even looked it up on Essie's site and can't find one that this might be, they have SO many.

9. "Bluecoat" by Butter London
Holy cow, another one that is in my top 10 all time. This is the most gorgeous blue polish, as you can see in the photo. It is so creamy, shimmery, and opaque. It reflects so beautifully in the light, and wears really well. Butter London is another one of my favorite brands, they are a more expensive nail polish brand, but the polish holds up really nice, especially paired with their top coat which I love!

10. "Under Your Spell" by Wet and Wild
This is such an affordable nail polish, I believe they are $1.99 at any drugstore. They are such a great formula!! I recommend this formula to anybody who wants to try a new nail polish shade without spending a lot. It is a great formula for the price, and even if it was a more expensive polish, I would still feel the same about it! This color is so great for those winter months. Some days it looks a little more red, some days it hits more into the wine/purple color, and it always has a really pretty metallic reflection. I love this vampy nail color for fall!


Well there you have it, those are my ten favorite darker polishes for fall and winter. What are yours? Or do you like to still wear bright polish through the winter months? Let me know down below!

As always, thanks for reading
xoxo, Jaimie
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