I got that Wintertime, Wintertime dry skin/chapped lips/ static hair

It is my pre-New Year’s resolution to write more. I love writing and sharing my obviously important insight with you all, but I also love Netflix, binge eating and bar-hopping, and I somehow I always find those more often.

netflix

 

As Winter creeps up on us like Kim Kardashian’s ass on my timeline, I start to search for new Winter products. Like many of you I’m sure, my skin, hair and lips go into a full catastrophic meltdown at the first gust of bitter winter air.

Over the years, I’ve formed an arsenal of winter-proof products that keep me from being scalier than that Komodo Dragon Bindi Irwin used to sing about (If no-one else remembers that, I’m extremely embarrassed for myself).

bindi

 

1) Due to the popularity of tights (Thank you God), women shaving their legs in the winter is at an all time low. And although I own tights more opaque than a window tint, I still try my best to keep my gams in line. Not even for the man in my life, but mostly for the girl who does my pedicures.

Image_1_Pomegranate_Raspberry_with_Razor_rev_17EOS Shave Cream$3.49.

This product is a miracle. An absolute MIRACLE. You really don’t have to use much, but it leaves your legs smoother than that first time you shaved in middle school and could finally wear skirts (Hollister here I come!!).

2) My face never fails to get incredibly dry November-March. So dry that I try not to stand too close to anyone so they can’t tell. My boyfriend doesn’t get kissed for a solid 3 months.

However now I’m macking away because this product has SAVED ME. It softly removes any dead skin and leaves you with a fresh, polished face. 100% worth the price, and I only needed to use it about 2x a week for great results.

 

s1314723-main-LheroLaura Mercier Face Polish$32.00.

3) STATIC HAIR. There’s really nothing else to say. I was turned onto this tip last year by a friend who was probably trying to drop a hint that my hair looked like some kid’s that kept his hand on that ball at the science center for too long. Throw a dryer sheet in your bag and run it through your hair to get rid of static. These are great because they don’t leave behind any fragrance.

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Bounce Free & Sensitive Dryer Sheets$8.59.

4) Anyone that knows me knows that my number one priority and love in life is chapstick. I can’t be more than 5 feet away from it at all times. I keep multiple tubes in my car, desk, purse, nightstand, etc. just to assure I am never without. I’ve tried just about every balm on the market and this one still reigns supreme. My lips never get chapped or dry, and a little goes a long way.

aquaphorAquaphor$4.99.

5) The best hand lotion I’ve ever had comes from the same brand as my game-changing shave cream- eos. I first loved the small size and slimness of the packaging (ideal for coat pockets), but I really went head over heels for the insane amount of moisture it gives my poor cuticles and hands. Plus it doesn’t smell like Christmas threw up on me.

 

EOSEOS Hand Cream$1.99

Winter can be such a harsh, cruel time here in the Mid-West, so anything to help me survive is KEY. Just remember when all else fails, Florida is only a plane ride away, but vodka is cheaper and closer.

celine

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Social Bul-media.

Social-Media-Addiction

My day usually goes something like this: wake up, refresh Twitter, shower, refresh Facebook, go to work, refresh, refresh, send an email, refresh, REFRESH REFRESH REFRESH- until I am completely burnt out on what all my friends, strangers and celebrities are up to.  I used to enjoy seeing photos of that kid from high school’s cool dinner, or what my favorite blogger wore that day. However, I’ve noticed recently that social media no longer makes me happy, it’s making me feel inadequate.

As women (and men!), we are under enough pressure as is. Pressure to have the perfect hair, a great outfit, perfect make-up, a toned body, and the list goes on and on. Now, I’ve never held myself to the standard of being perfect- because I know that’s unattainable. I just do my thing and hold enough confidence to be myself and work with what I’ve got.

However, that confidence diminishes when I go on Instagram and I see my favorite bloggers perfectly polished outfit,  frizz-free hairdo and pore-less face. The outfit that I loved when I got dressed in the morning becomes suddenly not trendy enough, my new haircut is deemed as lame and I start researching the latest craze in skin care (FYI, it’s rubbing coffee on your nose with lemon- DOESN’T WORK…says a friend).

Then I go on Twitter and see my friend started her day with an egg white scramble and a protein shake. Great, now I feel fat because I had a bagel for breakfast. She’s got abs and I’ve got cream cheese on my shirt. So I promise myself I’ll go to the gym after work and never eat Einstein’s again.

Then I get on Facebook and see that annoying couple post a PERFECT photo of them in a field or some sh$# and I think, “why don’t I have cute pictures like that?” “Why am I not having a picnic in an old industrial building with perfect lighting?”(But then I usually go back to gagging at the making-out photos and feel thankful that my relationship is a blast- with or without photos with lyrics underneath).

Every single time I refresh the page, my confidence decays just a little bit and I wish I could be more like anyone but me. I’m sure there’s plenty of people out there that don’t feel this way, but for the millions of us that hold some insecurities, enough is enough.

This morning, I had an Epiphany mid Instagram binge. All these social media sites are for the HIGHLIGHTS of our life. No-one is posting pictures of themselves popping a pimple or looking like a wet rat when they get out of the shower or fighting with their BAE<3. We will never get to see those things that inevitably, everyone goes through- so we forget that they exist for everyone. We see ourselves look less that perfect and doing less than awesome things everyday. It’s truly destructive to always be comparing our lows to someone’s highs.

So many people portray their lives to be perfect online- they made the perfect meal, had the perfect workout, wore the perfect outfit. I’m happy for you really, I am! We should all be proud of the cool stuff we do and accomplish. But I’ll no longer make myself believe that’s how your life is all the time. You’re showing me your highs, and you deserve the right to keep your lows private.

I’m guilty of this too, I know. I’ll post pictures of the great sweater I wore and how good my hair looked that day, but there’s no way you’re going to see me in my 2007 Paul Frank Jammies with a seaweed mask on eating cookie dough by the roll- but know that that does happen 1-2x a week. But now when I refresh the page and see that bloggers stellar “just-woke-up-perfectly-curled!” hair, I’ll know that she probably slept with her mouth open and drooled everywhere, just like the rest of us.

Photo by Sathish Issac

Nars-issistic V-Day

I’m officially back from the dead. Seriously people- I was non-existent from all life in the past week. BUT I’M BACK and brighter than ever- mostly in part to these amazing new products. Nars has always been my go-to makeup brand, and while I was sick and feeling sorry for myself I found an excuse to buy myself something new from them (I had a gift card so that doesn’t really count towards my February-no shopping rule..or so I told myself).

NARS

These products are perfect for Valentine’s day and just about every day- I love the pops of pink that make me look  fresh and alive- which is something my Valentine (my cat…jk it’s my boyfriend..and cat) hasn’t seen me look like in over a week now. Both of these are from Nars Limited Edition “Final Cut” Collection available at Nordstrom, so I highly suggest grabbing them up A.S.A.P before they’re gone!

|NARS “Adelaide” Illuminator: $30|

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I apply this on the top of my cheekbones BEFORE my powder/concealer and rub it in good- so it’s not too glittery. I put a bit of Nars Orgasm blush over it after applying powder to really make it have some depth.

|NARS “Villa Lante” Satin Lip Pencil: $25|

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I LOVE this shade. It glides on so easily and even after a few hours it leaves you with a nice pink-flushed look.

 

Hope everyone has a great V-day! Single, taken, whatever, it’s a great day to celebrate love in all shapes and forms. Plus it’s the perfect excuse to go get a dozen heart-shaped doughnuts and share with NO ONE.

Disclaimer: I lied about having a cat. Wishful thinking since my dear Mr. Pepper went to the litter box in the sky.

 

 

Couture to Contour

Aside from being a slave to my job, networking events and style.com this week- I’ve had time to experience a beauty revelation. I’ve been very curious about “contouring” and what products were best for it. Some photos REALLY scared me (see end of post). I found one from Birch Box that was simple and easy enough to follow. Since pay day is still a few days away, I opted out of going on a Sephora bender and just used the makeup I had in my bag.  I’ve gotten more compliments on my makeup the past few days than I have in the past few months, and I actually feel like I’m wearing less makeup than before. Call me Kim K (but please don’t) ya’ll- I’m now a contouring convert.

Here’s the photo from Birch Box: (white lines are for highlighter, the brown for bronzer and the pink for blush).

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Products I used:

1) I start with Benefit’s “Fake Up”. I have dark circles under my eyes and redness around my nose, and this stuff is AMAZING for covering it all up. Then I lightly brush bareminerals powder all over.

Benefit-Fake-Up-Hydrating-Concealer $24- http://www.benefitcosmetics.com/product/view/fakeup

bareMinerals-make-up-006$27- http://www.sephora.com/bareminerals

2) Time to begin the contouring miracle. I use Revlon’s Photoready Eye Primer and Brightener. It’s not the best- I’m in the market for a better one, but I like the applicator and it does the job for now.

revlon$10- http://www.ulta.com/ulta/browse/productDetail.jsp?productId=xlsImpprod4040057

3) I use an Elf angled brush with Nars Laguna bronzer. I apply it pretty dark and then blend it in.

nars$36- http://www.sephora.com/bronzing-powder-P12790

84022_900px_100011$3- available at Target stores

4) Next comes Nars Orgasm blush. I just use a regular blush brush and blend with a beauty blender.

nars2$29- http://www.sephora.com/blush-P2855

flawless-forever-makeup-sponge$6- I got mine at TJmaxx. WAY cheaper

5) I finish it out my filling in my brows with Benefit’s Instant Brow. Best brow pencil on the market for those of us that want Cara brows, but unfortunately had a plucking party 6-8th grade.

benefit-instant-brow-duo-d-20110203023050477~119913$20-http://www.benefitcosmetics.com/product/view/instant-brow-pencil

SO EASY. Pictures like the one below can be so intimidating.

1) I don’t want to look like a cast member from the Broadway version of The Lion King when I’m doing my makeup. 2) Girl looks good in the end but I can’t sacrifice my morning coffee and instagram binge for this.

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Anyone a Contour Connoisseur? Feel free to recommend some products I can try once pay day comes around!(well…maybe NEXT payday, I’ve got my eyes on some Attilio Giusti Leombruni‘s that need me)

Birchbox.com, Benefitcosmetics.com, Ulta.com, Sephora.com & Samer Khouzami for photos

Valentino Spring Couture 2014

As I was getting over my sadness of reading this yahoo article today: http://shine.yahoo.com/fashion/chanel-39-4-000-sneakers-pumped-kicks-fashion-202700153.html (HINT, MY BELOVED CHANEL TRAINERS COST $4,000), I finally had time to study Valentino. While I was looking for it to give me hope and happiness again, I found myself to be rather disappointed. It all made me miss Valentino, Giammetti and most importantly, the pugs.

I love Valentino- I’ve always said it’s one of my favorite fashion houses. Valentino gowns know a woman’s body like an OBGYN. That being said, the silhouettes, the fit, the craftsmanship- flawless per usual. I love the “55 dresses for 55 operas” theme- brilliant. The over all designs, color story and styling? Disappointed.

I get the whole “dark romance” thing- not all dresses have to be pink and red with hearts to display romance. However, I was disappointed to see how cold this collection was- not one inch of the always anticipated Valentino red. Not a fan of the short tulle skirted dresses- reminds me too much of that God-awful Swan dress Bjork wore to the Oscars in 2001.

All that being said- it still is Valentino, and many of the dresses did not disappoint- the ones I loved are below. It may have not been my favorite collection, but I’ll always have a bright, burning Valentino-red  love for the house.

v1 v2 v3 v4 v5 v6 v7 v8 v9 v10 v11

I mean….am I alone on this, or no?

The 73rd Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals v12

BRING BACK THE PUGS!!

valentinopug

Props to style.com for photos

 

Chanel Spring Couture 2014

I CAN’T BREATHE. Chanel took my life and then gave it back this morning. Those tennis shoes are EVERYTHING. I will admit that this collection isn’t very “Couture”, it errs more on the side of ready-to-wear for me. Although since I am nearly incapable of wearing heels, I am so refreshed to see a “Couture collection” with some good ol’ (and prob outrageously expensive) trainers. All things aside,  I love you Karl, I love you Chanel, I love you beautiful pink tennies that will be mine even if I have to sell my car and mother.

c1 c2 c3 c4 c5 c6 c8 c11 c12 c14 c16 c17 c19 c20 c21 c22 c23 c10

These last three are my top picks:

1) I’m about to dig up all my old knee and elbow pads and wear them to work tomorrow

2) THOSE TRAINERS

3) If someone doesn’t wear that dress to the Oscars, every stylist everywhere is doing something wrong

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Also, this child is a serious G holding hands with Karl and Cara. Fabulous ending to a fantastic show.

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Props to Style.com for photos

Dior Spring Couture 2014

Is there anything like Dior Haute Couture on a cold, blistering Monday morning? Maybe WEARING Dior Couture on a cold, miserable day like today- a girl can dream. I’m loving this collection from Raf. It’s fun, young, flirty and unconventionally sexy. The collection might not take with the older, loyal Dior customer, but I really appreciate the new audience Raf is trying to reach. Take a look at some of my favorites:

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HELLO to the neckline on that floral overcoat. So excited to see the rest of the collections!

(I’m looking at you, Karl)

Props to Style.com for the photos