Monday, May 13, 2013

2013 Empties Part 3 - Bath & Body Works

Welcome back to the 2013 empties series! This one's all Bath & Body Works products. It is excluding the candles as once I've burned through one I almost immediately repurpose the jar, so I don't recall which scents I've used up this year.

Aromatherapy shower gel in Lemon Zest - loved this scent! Sad it was discontinued, but I'm hoping it'll be back for semi-annual sale! Coconut Vanilla body lotion & Vanilla Bean Noel body lotion - good scents! I do prefer the classic Exotic Coconut to the Coconut Vanilla, but this one's pretty good. Vanilla Bean Noel is my favorite vanilla scent. I dislike the Warm Vanilla Sugar. This one seems less overpowering & mixes better with other scented products.

Aruba Coconut and Forever Red Triple Moisture Body Creams. I love that formula of moisturizer, especially in the winter when my skin's drier. I also like the Golden Sugar Scrub, which I also had in Forever Red. I love the tube packaging until the last bit, when it becomes extremely difficult to get the final uses out. The rest of the time, though, I find them much nicer than the ones that come in jars. 

Finally - the PocketBacs. Nothing really to say about them, I just felt like including them. I mostly only use them at work (more for the customers' benefit than my own), but over the past few years I've accumulated a ton of them from always getting them on a 5 for $5 deal, so I'm happy to finally be cutting that stash down!

This will be the last empties update for awhile, until I've accumulated enough to do another post. Hope you've enjoyed this little series! Let me know if there were any products throughout that you have any questions about.

*Edit* This was meant to be posted the Thursday following the previous empties post...but apparently even after a few years of blogging I still sometimes just save posts instead of publishing them. Sigh.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

2013 Empties Part 2 - Makeup, Fragrance, Nails

2013 empties part two! This time - hand & nail care, makeup, and perfume samples!

Nothing special about these hand creams - not bad, but I won't get them again. The Orly cuticle creme was really nice but I have a ton of cuticle products so I probably won't NEED to repurchase it. Orly Bonder base coat - I didn't hate it but I have quite a few basecoats I'm using up so I don't think I'll get it again. The Sally Hansen Insta Dri Whirlwind White I have already started a second bottle of! I know the nail products don't look empty, but the brushes don't reach the bottom so that's all I'm getting!

I enjoyed the Rimmel primer - although it took me AGES to use it up! There are others I want to try (and some samples to use up) but I'd consider getting it again in the future if I don't find something better. The Kat Von D eyeliner was such a pretty color but I've had it awhile and it was kind of dried up and getting difficult to get anything out of the bottle and onto my eye. The Revlon brow pencil is too short to fit inside of sharpeners anymore! I feel like much of the product ends up wasted and I didn't love the color so I won't get it again. The Mark. eyeshadow brush was AWESOME but the hairs have come loose inside of the ferrule and aren't staying the same length anymore.

I already have a full bottle of Couture Couture and I love it. I also really enjoy both the Marc Jacobs scents! I believe Oh, Lola! is one I can get from one of the Sephora fragrance samplers, and unless I end up loving one of the others, I'm pretty sure that's what I'll get the full size of! Miss Pucci was fine, I enjoyed the sample, but I don't see getting a full bottle.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

2013 Empties Part 1 - Skin & Hair Care

In my recent cleaning efforts, I figured I could easily clear some clutter by photographing my empties and getting rid of them! I had accumulated more than I had realized, so I'm splitting them up instead of piling them all in one post.

I'd consider purchasing full sizes of both moisturizers if there were a good deal on them. Neither were too heavy or greasy feeling for me. Since they are kind of pricey, I probably won't buy them unless there is a deal or sale of some kind. I have nothing bad to say about the cleanser but I like others better so I probably won't buy it again. I do like that it was not irritating to my eyes at all.

While I loved them when I first got them, I definitely won't get the shampoo & conditioner again. They made my hair feel awesome the first few times and then by the end I just didn't like it at all. My hair just works so much better when I stick with sulfate free shampoos. Of course I have already purchased more of the Batiste!

I liked the Clinique makeup remover but probably wouldn't buy it as I think there are cheaper options that do the job well too. The Simple makeup remover burned my eyes quite badly so I used it for removing swatches from my hands and arms. Definitely won't buy again! I have nothing bad to say about the lip balms but I didn't LOVE them either so I doubt I'll get them again. The Softlips did smell delicious though!

The next installment of 2013 empties will be posted a week from today!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Recent Ulta Haul!

Since I had a 20% off coupon as well as double points throughout March, I decided to pick up some things I'd been thinking about for awhile at Ulta.

For more photos of the products, as well as my thoughts so far, keep reading!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

My New Brush Washer!

While I was browsing Michael's recently, I found this brush washer in the art supplies and thought it would probably work for makeup brushes as well. It was around $5, so I picked it up, even though I'm sure this would be very simple to recreate.
I put a few drops of Dr Bronners soap in the jar along with a bit of a brush shampoo I don't care for and am trying to finish. Then I ran warm water until just the top of the wire mesh was sticking out above the water level. After that I basically just swirled each of my dirty brushes around on the mesh, which worked to gently splay out the hairs to get the cleanser throughout the brush. I was washing about 3/4 of my brushes this time, and even including dense synthetic foundation brushes, eye brushes with bright colored cream products in them, and lip brushes, I think it took around fifteen minutes.

Because the mesh is above the bottom of the jar, the pigments can fall to the bottom and not inhibit the cleaning process for the brushes after. As a result of that, I never got to a point where I needed to change the water in order to keep getting effective results.

I am so happy I got this! Now that my brush washing process is so quick and efficient - I hated how it used to take at least an hour, use up a ton of soap & water, and leave me with dry, prune-like hands - I think I'm going to be much, much better at keeping up with my brush laundry.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

February Manicures!

Apologies for the delay in this post! Evidently instead of publishing it, I just saved it as a draft...twelve days ago. At any rate, if you'd like to see the manicures I did throughout February, keep reading!

Friday, February 22, 2013

OPI Euro Centrale Comparison - Gold

This week I'm going to compare the polishes from the OPI Euro Centrale mini set to the other polishes in my collection.

The final comparison from the set is for the gold polish - OY-Another Polish Joke! I don't really like gold on my skin, so the only other gold polish I have is Goldeneye from the Bondettes mini set from the Skyfall collection. They're definitely not dupes. Goldeneye has much bigger flecks of gold and therefore has more nail that shows through the first coat or two. It's also darker.

L-R: OPI - OY-Another Polish Joke!, OPI - Goldeneye

Thursday, February 21, 2013

OPI Euro Centrale Comparison - Lavender

This week I'm going to compare the polishes from the OPI Euro Centrale mini set to the other polishes in my collection.

Today I'm comparing You're Such a BudaPest! I was expecting this polish to be a match for something in my collection as well, but it's unique too! It's a bluer shade than Sally Hansen's Lacey Lilac, although they're about the same level of pastel. You're Such a BudaPest! is sort of like a pastel version of Zoya's Caitlin.
L-R: Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear - Lacey Lilac, OPI - You're Such A BudaPest!, Zoya - Caitlin

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

OPI Euro Centrale Comparison - Blue

This week I'm going to compare the polishes from the OPI Euro Centrale mini set to the other polishes in my collection.

Today's comparison is with the blue from the set - Can't Find My Czechbook. I was not expecting to love this polish as much as I do! I also wasn't expecting it to be so different from my other polishes. I thought I had a decent amount of blue polishes but it seems they're all either much more teal, more purple, or just darker than this particular shade. Hopefully I don't end up wishing I had a big bottle of this one! Although surely I can find a similar shade if I ever use up the mini bottle. 

L-R: China Glaze - For Audrey, OPI - Can't Find My Czechbook, Sally Hansen Insta Dri - Blue-Away

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

OPI Euro Centrale Comparison - Pink

This week I'm going to compare the polishes from the OPI Euro Centrale mini set to the other polishes in my collection. 

First up: the pink! The slightly coral-leaning pink of Suzi's Hungary AGAIN! is not particularly unique to my collection as I find that type of shade to be particularly flattering against my skin tone. While none of these polishes are exactly the same, the OPI, Revlon, and Urban Outfitters colors are similar enough that you certainly would not need more than one of them in your collection. The China Glaze is more of a true pink than the others, although it is certainly not too far off.

L-R: Urban Outfitters - Cocktail, Revlon Top Speed - Guava, OPI - Suzi's Hungary AGAIN!, China Glaze - Sugar High

Friday, February 15, 2013

OPI Euro Centrale Mini Set

I couldn't resist the mini set from OPI's newest collection! I seem to have tackled this collection much the same way as I did Skyfall - by intending to just get the glitter, and then leaving with the mini set as well. What can I say? These colors really appealed to me! Although, I do wish this set had one of the darker blue or purple shades rather than the gold, but I'll get past it.

For more photos, swatches, and my thoughts - keep reading!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Ulta Haul!

I made two trips to Ulta recently - the first one to use my 20% off coupon, the second to get the things I actually needed and forgot about. With the coupon, I picked up two Butter London polishes and the Nicole by OPI Drying Drops. I've had my eye on Trout Pout for quite awhile, but kept telling myself I had enough coral-y polishes. I'm so glad I finally got it, though! It isn't identical to any of the other similar colors in my collection, and the formula is fantastic. Although I researched swatches of many of their polishes and asked friends for recommendations from the brand, the other polish I got - Scouse - wasn't one I'd looked up at all in advance, it just really caught my eye! I've been curious about drying drops for awhile as well. I'm not sure yet if they're making a massive difference in dry time or not.

The other - slightly more necessary - products are a new face cleanser, dry shampoo, and a glycolic AHA cream. These are all new-to-me products. I've used the Neutrogena Naturals Makeup Removing cleanser before, but this is the other one. The dry shampoo is from the brand Samy, a brand which I've never tried before. Finally, the AHA cream - I'd heard about these a few times, but didn't know much about them. I assumed they'd be pricey for some reason, but when Lauren of RedheadPhD mentioned this one in a recent video, I figured for that price I may as well give it a go!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

January Manicures

Another new month means another month's worth of manicures to share with you! I really enjoyed all of them this month - and I was especially into glitters! I also tried Ciate polishes for the first time, and expanded both my Butter London and OPI collections a bit - two brands I've fairly recently come to appreciate.

If you'd like to see, larger photos and names of the polishes I used will be under the cut!

Thursday, January 31, 2013

January Face of the Day - Final Roundup

Apparently it's the last day of January, so here's the last set of my Face of the Day photos from the month! As with the past few, each day is also pictured individually, usually with a product list, on my Facebook page.

I like the way I've been doing these. I intend to continue posting my makeup looks weekly-ish (or whenever I get 5-7 days worth!) on here, and more frequently - including product information! - over on Facebook. If there's anything you'd like to see otherwise, let me know!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Outfit of the Day - Favorites from January

I've been missing putting together Outfit of the Day posts the past few months, so I've decided to bring them back to the blog! Instead of photographing my outfit every day, I'll only be doing it if I especially like it, or if I'm trying something new, or if it feels different enough from others I've posted.

I think people's style choices can really reflect a lot about their personality, which is why I love following blogs that at least occasionally include personal style posts. Hopefully you guys enjoy that type of thing as well! Let me know if you'd like any additional information at all.

P.S. I want to have a title for my personal style/fashion posts other than just "outfit of the day" so if any of you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them & add them to my list of choices!

Photos are under the cut!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Organization & Display: Jumbo Eye Pencils

Trying to strike the perfect balance between functionality and aesthetic in my makeup storage is a never-ending project for me. However, this little project I took on this week seemed to be another step in the right direction! I had picked up the glass at Bath & Body Works during their semi-annual sale. Although it's meant to hold their mini candles, I don't actually have any of those - I just thought it was attractive! I decided it would make a nice addition to my makeup storage. 

Since it's taller than the container I previously had my jumbo eye pencils in, it was harder to see the colored tip of each one. I thought turning them upside down would help - except all of the NYX pencils are completely white, unlike the other brands I have, which show the color of the pencil on the bottom. 

Instead of giving up, I put my nail polish collection to use - matching each pencil to a polish & painting the bottom section! I taped off the bottom section so they'd have a crisp line and did as many coats as needed to get to the right opacity. For three of the colors I mixed polishes together to achieve exactly the right shade and texture, but the rest I had polishes that were close enough.

I am thrilled with the way they look! It's much easier to see each pencil's shade, and I think having the colors displayed more obviously will make me more likely to reach for them - lately, my jumbo pencils have been somewhat ignored! 

If you have any questions about the process, the colors I used, or anything else - just ask!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Face of the Day - Week 3 Roundup

Somehow, another week has already gone by since the last Face of the Day weekly roundup post! As always, head over to my Facebook page to see the FOTD album - and I've tried to be better about listing products for each photo this time! Eventually I'll remember every time, I swear.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

bareMinerals - The Cocktail Hour palette

After seeing swatches and reading the review of this palette over on Temptalia a little while ago, I decided to look it up on bareMinerals' website - where it was on sale for $17.15! On top of that, there was free shipping, so I figured I couldn't resist! Although I'm not a huge fan of how much fingerprints and other smudges show on the outside, in general I really love the palette! The shadows are awesome quality, the colors in the palette are diverse enough that I think I could travel with it on its own, the mirror and brush in the palette are great, and it's so compact. While I don't think I'd pay the $40 full price for one of these palettes, on sale it was a great deal. The fact that this is one of just two palettes I decided to keep as is instead of depotting the shadows is definitely a sign as to how much I like the whole package!

For larger photos of the shadows, as well as swatches, keep reading!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Face of the Day - Week 2 Roundup

Apologies for the slight delay - but here's the roundup of last week's face of the day photos! I've tried to be better at keeping track of and noting which products I used this week. I listed that type of information as the caption for each day's photo in my Face of the Day album over on my Facebook page

If you want to know more specifics, feel free to ask (either as a comment on the Facebook photo or on this post) and I'll try to remember for you. 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

January FOTD - Week 1

While posting my "face of the day" look daily was a bit much for me, I never want it to like it did last month, where I basically waited for the entire month to be done before I posted the looks over on Facebook. For this month, I'm trying a compromise - where I post weekly instead! So here's the roundup of my looks from the first week of January. The full-size photos will still be posted over on my Facebook page.

While I think I'll stick to this frequency for this month to fully test it, let me know if you prefer a different method!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

December Empties

For my thoughts on the products I finished during December, keep reading!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Christmas Haul 2012

I got some fun new beauty items for Christmas this year! Two Sephora by OPI nail polishes in fabulous colors and some of the Sephora makeup brushes! I can't wait to use these polishes in a manicure - they're very similar to the colors on my bedroom walls, so I think I'll try to combine them somehow. The brushes are so nice as well. The powder brush is absolutely enormous but so soft and fun to use. The angled liner brush is fantastic, and I always need more of them. I haven't used the stippling brush yet, but it feels really nice! If anyone has any usage tips for that one, I'd love to hear them.

Did you get anything beauty related for gifts this year?

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