Thursday, May 31, 2012

{This Week In Pics} Last Week Of May :)

Must start the week with coffee. M.U.S.T. Iced w/milk from Dunkin :)

License plate of the SUV in front of us in the drive thru at Dunkin. Too cute!

Gym time! Need new sneaks. Have had these for 4+ years.
Really comfy!

Post workout Passionfruit Iced Tea, unsweetened, w/gym buddies.
Mmmmmm :)

Made some homemade sushi for dinner with some friends :)

Bored at work = perfect time to add to my Moleskine.
Obsessed with koi fish. Not sure what to add to this drawing tho :/

Heading out to meet a friend at the mall. Love this watch/bracelet combo!

New phone case from Cellairis. In LOVE!!! And also bored at work lol


Yummy yummy breakfast :)

I have way too much time on my hands. And an addiction haha

Pretty much my week. Coffee, gym, work, more work, more gym, more coffee, blog, and sleep lol but sad. Hope you liked <3

{Favorites} May 2012!

Hey there! It's been a while since I've done one of these favorites posts, so this is really a what-I've-been-using-for-the-past-three-months post and not just a May favorites post lol!

I've got a good variety of things too! I've really just been sticking to mostly basics lately because I've been on the go and working out a lot in the evenings, so I haven't been wanting to pile on a lot of makeup during the day only to have it melt off my face at the gym.

L --> R: Being True Energy Work Active Body Peel, Rimmel Fix &
Perfect Pro Primer, and RoC Retinol Correxion Eye Cream.

First up is skin care! I've really been trying to use as little as possible on my face. My skin has calmed down, post uni stress, and I haven't been breaking out. I have been using a sunless tanner so exfoliation is a must. The Being True Active Body Peel has been my favorite way of exfoliating for a long long time now (original review here). I reviewed it fairly extensively last summer, feel free to check out that review! I love it so much that this is actually my second tub of it! It's on the pricy side, $43 plus shipping, but worth every penny to me. It leaves my skin feeling super soft and my sunless tanning gel applies very smoothly, with rarely any streaks or patches. I highly recommend!

The Rimmel Fix & Perfect Pro Primer has been another go to in this warm weather. I haven't been wearing a lot of foundation lately, but I like this as a hybrid moisturizer/mattifier. It's not necessarily the best of either that I've used, but at the price, around $6, it works well to make my skin soft and matte. It is a silicone based primer, so if you don't like the feel of those on your skin, this one will not be right for you. And it doesn't work as well as the Smashbox primers, but for the price, it does a good job.

Roc Retinol Correxion Eye Cream

The ROC Retinol Correxion Eye Cream my mom actually picked up for me because I mentioned to her I ran out of my Biore Cooling Eye Gel, which I was in love with at uni because I was pulling a lot of all nighters and it would make my eyes de-puff like nothing else I've every used. My mom has an obsession with eye creams and has tried to get me to use something with retinol for a while now instead of, according to her, wasting money on eye creams with no active ingredients. The RoC cream is a bit more expensive than other eye creams at the drugstore level, but then again this is supposed to be anti-aging, so around $22 really isn't too bad. Does it work to get rid of wrinkles? Well, I really can't tell because I don't have wrinkles, but my mom is also using it so I'll see how it works for her. I like it because it moisturizes, but absorbs very quickly. A lot of eye creams tend to be too heavy and just sit there. It also de-puffs! I was surprised because it's not really all that cooling or anything like that.

My only complaint with this product is the packaging. It's in like a metal/foil package, so I have to be careful to use it from the end in because otherwise too much product is squeezed out. Also, because there is constant pressure on the cream inside the metal packaging, the tip tends to seep a little into the cap, which can be messy sometimes. Other than that so far so good with this eye cream, but I guess time will tell! I'll be doing a full review in the future!

L -->R: Being True Energy Work Active Body Peel, Rimmel Fix &
Perfect Pro Primer, and RoC Retinol Correxion Eye Cream.
Stila 8 Pan Eyeshadow Palette

I've been meaning to get a palette for my Stila eyeshadows for a while now and when Stila was on Haute Look a few weeks ago, I jumped at the chance to purchase the 8 pan palette and I love it! So glad to not have to store my shadows in the little plastic containers they used to come in. I actually prefer organizing them in a palette as opposed to the compacts they are currently being sold in. For me it's a lot easier to store and travel with them this way. The case is sturdy and has a full size mirror. And the brush the palette comes with is pretty good too!

L -->R: Starlight, Cloud, Grace, Barefoot Contessa,
Jade & Lemon (empty was from Chinois--matte bone shade).

These aren't all of my Stila Shadows, just the ones that aren't packed away. I've mostly been using the top row, especially Starlight, Grace, and Barefoot Contessa. I really want Viola, which is similar to Grace, but warmer and deeper. Cloud is a nice shade, but more of a going out shade because it applies very silver. Jade and Lemon are nice, but I haven't been using them all that much lately. Lemon applies a bit too yellow/gold on my skin. The top row is my go to quad for any occasion.

L --> R: Starlight, Cloud, Grace, Barefoot Contessa, Jade &  Lemon.
(applied wet)

If you want to get similar colors for less, the CoverGirl trio in Shimmering Sands is a pretty good dupe for Starlight, Grace and Barefoot Contessa. Not the same shades, the Stila ones are a bit darker, but pretty close for under $5.

L --> R: Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle, CoverGirl Lash Exact
Mascara in Black & Sally Hansen Liptonic Gem Gloss in Embellished.

Other than shadows the rest of my looks have been pretty simple. Most days I only do mascara and gloss. Click here to read my review of the Charlotte Ronson gloss. I'm in love with it! Such an easy look, a little taupe shadow, touch of mascara, and juicy sheer red lip. Or, same shadow/mascara combo, but a shimmery sheer plummy lip instead. Effortless, and looks very simple and chic for summer.

L --> R: Sally Hansen Liptonic Gem Gloss in Embellished, Charlotte Ronson
Lip Gloss in Anabelle & CoverGirl Lash Exact Mascara in Black .

And I've been loving the CoverGirl Lash Exact mascara for several reasons. If you've been reading my blog for a while you've probably noticed that I'm not a a bit fan of those plastic bendy mascara applicators. They tend to clump and leave my lashes looking long and spidery and clumpy, not a look I like. I'm more into thick and curled. This mascara, the waterproof version of it, for some odd reason, works. I was shocked. My sister had a tube and I borrowed it, fell in love, and bought one for myself. It gives me thick, lashes that stay curled day, and most importantly do not smudge at all at the gym, no matter how much I sweat! Not a big fan of the clean up at night, it takes forever to remove it, even with an oil based makeup remover, but totally worth it for me.

Top --> bottom: Sally Hansen Liptonic Gem Gloss in Embellished
& Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle.

This picture really doesn't do the Sally Hansen gloss justice. It's so much prettier in person and  it's appeared several times on this blog. It was a staple in my makeup bag (see here) and it's even a dupe for MAC's Dazzleglass in Datenight (see comparison here!). All in all, it's replaced my Chanel Glossimer in Imaginaire, which is crazy given I got this gloss for a buck at the Dollar Tree and paid over $26 for the Glossimer.

OPI Nail Polish in A Good Man-Darin is Hard to Find

My last fave for this month is a nail polish. I don't post many nail polish pics because I can never get the swatches or even pics of the bottles to show up accurately in pics. I'm gonna try to show more from now on, maybe swatch some on tape or something.

           OPI Nail Polish in A Good Man-Darin is Hard to Find

This shade is perfect for summer. I have been favoring neons a lot too, but this shade has been a go to for my feet. It's a bright orange, almost tomato-ish, but not too red. It looks very bright in some lights and almost red in others. A really pretty color for toes, especially with it being flip flop season. It's completely matte and you could get away with one coat in a hurry because it's very opaque. I've had it on my feet for the last three or four weeks straight and I always get asked what color I'm wearing!

So there's pretty much what I've been wearing these past three months. I've been keeping it simple, half out of laziness half out of determination to finish some of these products too haha!

Tried any of these products? Loved them? Hated them? Let me know in comments!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

{Poll} Vote in the side bar!

What would you like to see more of on my blog? More makeup reviews? Skin care posts? Personal posts? I've added a new poll in the side bar. Please please please take the time to let me know! Your feed back is important to me! Thank you!!!

<3 Natalie

{Review} Charlotte Ronson Lipgloss in Anabelle

Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle

If you are unfamiliar with the relatively new brand Charlotte Ronson, you are really missing out. I recently discovered it on one of my trips to Sephora and I've got to say that I'm craving more! Charlotte Ronson, twin sister of Samantha Ronson, is a designer who has recently branched into makeup and I've got to say, I love her line. I didn't purchase much, but I did get a chance to swatch some of the glosses and shadows and they are great. The packaging is simple, cute, and chic, and the shades vary between classic and modern. The pricing is reasonable and the selection, though somewhat limited, interesting.  I look forward to trying out more from this brand because the gloss I did purchase really impressed me.

Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle

The shade I purchased is Anabelle, which is a sheer red. Among all the shades sold, this one jumped out at me for several reasons. One, it's a fairly true red. No pink, no orange in the mix. It's not too  cool, not too warm so it's a good choice for just about any skin tone. In addition, it's a sheer red. I absolutely hate glosses that are too opaque. If I wanted a liquid lipstick, I'd buy one. With my skin tone, reds tend to make me look very pale, so I  usually stay away from them. If you're looking for very wearable red, this gloss is a good choice. If you want to wear it very sheer, just layer a bit of it over a balm. If you apply a thin layer on bare lips, it will be sheer, but you can layer it for more opacity. Or you can wear it over a red lip liner or lipstick for a very shiny statement lip. Whichever way you choose to wear it, it's difficult to go wrong with this gloss.

Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle (Cap)

The gloss is packaged in a slim heart shaped container. It's cute and chic! And unlike some of the other brands that have tried to do cute packaging, this does not look childish at all, which is nice!

Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle (Applicator-Front)

I'm in love with this applicator. It isn't unique to this gloss. I've been seeing it on many glosses, from Revlon to Sephora brand. I much prefer this applicator to the standard doe foot. This version features a flattened front, almost like a little paddle.

Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle (Applicator-Side)

When you turn it side ways, you see that the applicator is slanted, making application a lot easier. The way the applicator is smaller at the tip than the base makes application more precise as well.

Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle (Swatch)

Charlotte Ronson Lip Gloss in Anabelle (Swatch) (Sorry for the blur!!)

Sorry for the blur in the pic. I've been using my iPhone to take pics lately cuz it's faster and more convenient than taking them with my camera and having to deal with cords and transfer etc. The downside is that I can't do much with zoom.  The shade in both swatches is fairly accurate, thought he lip swatch is coming across a little more pink than it is in real life. The lip swatch is  a thicker application, but as you can see from the first swatch, you can apply it very sheer or layer it for more opacity.

How does it wear? Very well! The gloss is on the thinner side, but not runny by any means or sticky. It will last a good 2-3 hours without eating or drinking. I love how when it wears off it leaves my lips looking a little bit stained, like I've been eating raspberries. Very pretty! It's also completely matte, which is a good thing because shimmer tends to seep into fine lines. No such problems with this gloss. It has a fresh, almost minty scent, but it is not a plumper and does not tingle at all. It feels cool on the lips, which is nice during the summer. The scent is very light, dissipates after a few minutes, not cloying at all. All in all, a very very shiny red gloss and I highly recommend! In fact, a few of the other shades are calling my name lol! Check them out the next time you're at Sephora!

Tried it? Loved it? Hated it? Let me know in comments?


Price: $14

Ingredients: Polybutene, Octyldodecanol, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil Synthetic Fluorphlogopite Fragrance/Parfum, Flavor/Aroma, 1,2-Hexanediol, Caprylyl Glycol, Saccharin, Benzimidazole Diamond Amidoethyl Urea Carbamoyl Propyl Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Geraniol, Citral, Methyl 2-Octynoate, Limonene, May Contain:, Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891) , Iron Oxides (Ci 77491; Ci 77492; Ci 77499) Red 7 Lake (Ci 15850), Red 6 Lake (Ci 15850), Blue 1 Lake (Ci 42090), Yellow 5 Lake (Ci 19140), Yellow 6 Lake (Ci 15985), Red 28 Lake (Ci 45410).

Friday, May 18, 2012

{Review} MAC Fix+ (Original)

MAC Fix+

Fix+ by MAC is one of those products I've been wanting to try out for a while, but was never sure of it's place in my makeup collection. Or in my skin care routine. According to MAC, Fix+ is, and I quote, "An aqua-spritz of vitamin and minerals, infused with a calm-the-skin blend of green tea, chamomile, cucumber, topped off with the fresh, natural, energizing scent of Sugi. Adds radiance, finishes makeup. Spray it on. Skin drinks it up!" Which basically tells me absolutely NOTHING. So, prior to purchasing this product, I went online and did some googling to see how other beauty bloggers use this product. What I found was that a lot of people were making their own versions to suit their own skin types for pennies. So I tried it, liked it, and decided to just go with that for a while. Then MAC released these cute little mini's, designed to pass through the TSA checks with no problems and I found that I couldn't resist anymore. Given that the mini version only cost me $10, I decided to give it a try.

MAC Fix+

So how do I use the real Fix+? I use it several ways. One, I use it to "set" my makeup. I put set in quotes because this is not really a makeup setting spray, per se. Actually, I would say that instead of making your makeup last longer, this stuff will cause it to wear off quicker. I don't use foundation often, but when I do, I set it with powder. What I like Fix+ for is to make my makeup disappear. I powder my face and then I spray a few spritzes of this all over my face, wait for it to dry, and presto, my makeup disappears. You can no longer see my powder at all, which I love. Two, I use it to refresh, somewhat. I add the somewhat because it's not gonna magically rejuvenate your makeup. Not by a long shot. What I do is I spray this on around 3-4 pm, after I've been wearing my makeup for 7-8 hours. I do some blotting, powder again, lightly spritz again and wait for it to dry. My face looks clean and fresh, better than if I'd just blotted and powdered. Three, I sometimes use it as a toner. I spray it on my face, and before it dries I apply a serum or moisturizer. These are just a few ways to use it, and I'm sure there are many more out there.

Here are a few tips for using this product. One: don't spray too close to your face or you will end up very sticky and greasy looking even. Glycerine, one of the main ingredients, is an emollient that sits on the skin, sort of like petrolatum, locking moisture in. Too much and it will make you look greasy. Two: if you are using this to dampen your brush before applying an eyeshadow, again, don't spray too much or your shadows will end up creasing faster. Three: if you're spraying it on your face, spray about 6-8 inches away, and in a quick circular motion. That way you waste less product. I wish the spray was a finer mist. I find that this sprays in a circle, so a lot of it misses the center of my face. My DDF toner spray was so fine that two spritzes and I could get my entire face covered. I find myself using 5-6 sprays each time I use this product. 

MAC Fix+ Locked

One of my favorite things about this product is it's ability to lock and unlock. MAC really outdid themselves with the packaging. I absolutely hate sprays with caps in my purse. The caps almost always fall off, the head of the spray bottle leaks inside my purse, I end up with a big mess and a product I hate. No such problem with this product. There is no cap! I love that! I just twist the lid, toss it in my purse, and no worries! I've never had an issue with any leaking with this this product, which I really really appreciate.

MAC Fix+ Unlocked

MAC Fix+

What it comes down to with this product, in my humble opinion, is a simple question: do you need it?? My answer is no. Why? Well for one, there are a lot of products out there that do a similar task for a lot less. They aren't marketed the same way (usually just sold as spray toners), but they really do the same thing as Fix+. And that is not really much. Fix+ is handy, I'll admit, but nothing in it's formula distinguishes it from other spray toners. In fact, compared to those, Fix+ comes up short. For one, when it dries, it has a tendency to feel sticky/tacky to the touch. I found this out when I when to pat it into my skin one hot hot day. I rubbed to excess into my hands, which, when the liquid dried, felt sticky, like I spilled a bit of juice or something. In addition, this product doesn't really treat my skin. I had no difference in softness, color, hydration, or texture when using this product, where as other toners definitely made my skin softer. If you have very dry skin, I can see you liking this product a bit more. It really does nothing special.  The way I was using this product, I could have easily just sprayed some water and gotten the same result, making spending $10 on 1 oz of product seem a bit much. In my opinion, you don't need this at all. I do however see myself reusing the spray bottle, which I find very convenient. I just don't see myself ever repurchasing this product again.

What do you think about MAC Fix+? Tried it? Loved it? Hated it? Let me know in comments!


Price: $10 (for 1 oz, $20 for 3.4 oz)

Ingredients: Water, glycerin, butylene glycol, cucumber fruit extract, chamomilla, camellia leaf extract, tocophryl acetate, caffeine, panthenol, hydrogenated castor oil, fragrance.

I'm back :) (Please read!)

Hi there! It's been almost a full year since the last time I blogged, last summer. I had every intention of keeping up with the blog during the school year, but as soon as I got back to uni I got swamped. For those of you who don't know, I am a nursing major, and it's hard, so so hard. Between clinicals and two part time jobs I just could not find the effort in me to continue blogging, especially when I had so little free time that I was either with friends, studying, or sleeping. I do apologize for leaving you guys without any explanations, but I've worked so hard to get where I am today and my education comes first. I will try to make a good effort to update regularly, but I unfortunately I can't make any promises.

What brought me back to blogging? I was lacking in motivation for a while there. I couldn't make myself find the interest, especially since for the majority of the last few months I've been trying to finish the products I've accumulated rather than purchasing more. It hasn't been entirely successful, but I'm getting there. One of the things that made it easy for me to stop blogging is the fact that I don't really feel connected to you guys, my readers. I find myself getting discouraged when I put so much time and effort into a review and I see that there are a lot of page views, but almost no comments, no responses. I want to know what YOU think about the product. Have you tried it? Do  you agree with the review? Was your experience different from mine? I really do look forward to each and every comment, and I respond to just about every single one. I would love to hear from you guys more often!!! Is there something you would like to see on the blog? More of something? Less of something? Don't be shy! Let me know!

So there your have it! I will try to post as much as possible over the summer, but unfortunately, no promises for when I go back to uni. Thanks for your continued support!