Feb 27, 2012

Super Late Fashion Five Friday: February 18-24

As soon as I announced "Fashion Five Friday" was going to become a thing, we should have predicted I wouldn't be posting them with any consistency. At least I haven't let them die out entirely. Better late than never, right?
5. Italians are just cooler than regular people. Case and point: Eva Fontanelli
4. Stacey's cool girl bright fur coat
3. A girl after my own heart, Rachel Zoe always picks the best shoe porn.
2. How insane are these Max & Chloe natural geode rings?
1. Everything about Carolina's NYFW style

Feb 26, 2012

Skin Care Sunday: Proactiv Refining Mask

I don't actually like Proactiv in general. I know it can work wonders for people with severe cystic, acne, but most of the line is too harsh for my sensitive combination-oily skin. That said, the Proactiv Refining Mask is perhaps the single most important product in my entire beauty arsenal. This white mud-like drying mask is literally a miracle worker. I apply this before bed when I have a pimple(s) and in the morning it's gone. It's kind of ridiculous how good this stuff is. However, I should warn you that if you have dry skin you should be weary that it might over-dry you.

Feb 25, 2012

Shellac Scam

Lately, I've been hearing everyone talk about shellac nails; they last longer, they make your nails stronger, yada yada yada. I'm not the type to usually spend money on my nails, but I happened upon a Groupon (my obsession) that offered a shellac manicure and hot-stone massage pedicure for $34 dollars. Only $34! So of course I bought it and made an appointment. While I loved the experience and I came home with pretty, blister free feet (I'm a runner), I was skeptical as to just how long this pedicure would last.
Long story short, by the end of the first week there was already signs of wear. By the end of the second week, my nails were just a hot mess. I don't know if that is normal, but I don't even intend to pay much for a shellac manicure ever again.

Feb 24, 2012

Why You Apply Powder Wrong

I don't always wear makeup (I almost never wear foundation.), but I do wear translucent powder every single day pretty much without fail, so I was completely sure I knew how to use a powder brush. Turns out I didn't, and I bet neither do you. This video basically blew my mind.

Feb 21, 2012

April, May

Thanks to the fact that I'm a starving college student, the once-in-a-lifetime trip I took to Paris last May seems to be just that, once-in-a-lifetime. However, now that Refinery29 has so kindly shared the new brand April, May I have discovered a clothing line that combines my memories of France with memories of the few years I spent living in California. April, May is only available in a few locations as of now so I may have to do some style stalking down in Miami. I suggest you all check the line out because honestly, I think I'm in love. Here's my favorite look from Spring/Summer 2012:

Feb 19, 2012

Do's and Don'ts of Gym Wear

DO’S AND DON’TS OF GYM WEAR Everyday street style is important. What you wear to class, dinner with friends, movie night with the boyfriend all says a lot about you and your personality. The gym, however, is not necessarily a place most people put thought into their appearance. And this can be (somewhat) understandable; nobody expects you to look like Adriana Lima in your bootcamp class while sweat is pouring down your face and your hair is looking like a hot mess. However, there are some important considerations: 1. The number 1 rule? Do not,under any circumstances, wear normal leggings as workout wear. While same people may make the argument that leggings are never ok, I think they're fine under a longer top. But the gym is no place for these leggings! What you may not realize is that because street leggings are so thin, once you get to sweating and stretching, you're letting the whole world have a see-through view of your tush. Ew. If you wanna go for the leggings look, make sure they are legitimate work out pants, made by an athletic company. 2. Leave the push-up bras at home. There are always a handful of girls strutting around the gym in a tight, low-cut tank top with their boobs pushed out. Please, there is no way you can comfortably do sprints on the track or and inclined position moves with all that going on. 3. Do leave your cell phone in the locker. Yes, we all have cute cases and we all like to listen to music on our phones, but there is no need to text in-between every set of crunches. You would burn more calories if you didn't stop to check your messages every 5 minutes. And talking on the phone while using the elliptical? You're just ticking off everyone who can't find an elliptical to use. 4. Makeup. Ok, even I sometimes go to the gym with makeup on because I'm coming straight from class and work. That being said, by the time I leave it's also dripping down my face and looking like a rendition of The Joker's makeup. If you leave the gym and you not only have makeup on, but it looks just as good as before your workout? You didn't push it hard enough. One real piece of advice? Take any makeup off before you hit the gym; it's not very healthy for your skin to be soaking up all that foundation and concealer while you sweat.

Feb 18, 2012

Fashion Five Friday [on a Saturday]: February 11-17

5. Taylor's adorable brunch outfit
4. Zoe Saldana's cool girl casual
3. Alicia's quirky but somehow totally wearable Markus Lupfer sweater
2. Marchesa's princessy stunners
1. There are no words for Louboutin's sketches.

Feb 6, 2012

Jason Craze

Hopefully, you knew about the Jason Wu for Target line that came out yesterday. If you didn't, you're a nobody. That being said, Taryn and I went to scope the line out in hopes of finding some cute shirts, dresses, and accesories. What we found was essentially a leftover lot of unwanteds. If you thought this line was going to be nowhere near as popular as Missoni for Target, you were seriously wrong. The accesories display was wiped clean, no remnants besides the hooks the silky scarves and Spring-ready handbags hung from. Taryn was lucky enough to find a bow tie top (which I'm sure she'll be posting about soon) in extra small, while every other shirt left over was size XL. I, however, was seriously duped by Target. Finding some cute floral dresses on the backside of the display, I naturally assumed they were Jason Wu. Wrong. I got home and noticed the Exhilaration tags hanging from the dress. While it's a cute dress, the fact that I was tricked into believing it was a Jason will have me returning it at the next possible opportunity. If you're interested in keeping up with the craze, here is a link to the maddness going on out there: http://racked.com/tags/jason-wu-for-target

Feb 3, 2012

January Loves

This is going to be kind of a December-January Loves, as I never got around to posting one of these last month. If I had, there would have been a ton of overlap, as I've been using pretty much the same products. (Please ignore how dirty my stippling brush is.)
8. Christmas Cupcake Yankee Candle
I bought myself this delicious treat the day after Christmas (on sale for around $10) and have been burning/loving it almost every day since. There are truly no words for the divinity of this scent.
I'm not sure why they market this as a "Highlighting Brush" when it can be used for so much more. (I actually don't even highlight with it.) As you can see it's a duofiber stippling brush, sometimes referred to as a skunk brush, which I find absolutely adorable. This is my first brush of this variety, and I've been kind of obsessed with it. Although a stippling brush can be used in about a million different ways, I've been using it for achieving a more natural application of powder products, namely matte bronzer.
6. NYC Sheer Red Lipstick
I believe this is from their Ultra Moist Lipwear line, but the packaging doesn't say. (Look for the black bullet tube.) I first heard about this universally flattering shade from the ever charming Emily Eddington. When I picked one up from CVS for like $1.99, I instantly fell in love. This is one of those blue reds that magically whiten your teeth. As the name implies, it's just sheer enough to keep it from overwhelming my medium-warm skintone. This has been my go-to for nights out, paired with understated eye make-up.
5. Organix Moroccan Curling Perfection Defining Cream
This budget-friendly alternative to MoroccanOil Intense Curl Cream is the holy grail of curly hair products and the subject of the first post in my Splurge vs. Save series.
I'm fairly new to cream/gel eyeliners so while I don't have a ton to compare to, this liner is very smoothe and easy to apply. Coffee is the perfect deep, matte brown. I also have this liner in Gunmetal, Black, and Midnight. (At only $3 a pop, I'll probably end up getting all of them.) I've been wearing Coffee pretty much every day, winged out just the slightest bit beyond my lashes.
3. Starbucks Via
Since I'm practically impossible to shop for, relatives and family friends mostly gift me checks, gift cards, and the ever convenient and delicious Starbucks Via Ready Brew. My favorites are Christmas Blend 2011 and Italian Roast.
2. Almay One Coat Get Up & Grow Mascara
I've been trying to find a worthy replacement for my long time favorite CoverGirl Lash Blast ever since I decided to go cruelty free, and I'm happy to announce I've found it in Almay GU&G. This really is one of those more is more kind of mascaras I love. What I mean by this is the more of this mascara you apply, the fuller your lashes magically appear. I mostly concentrate the product near the base of my lashes for volume, but it's the kind of formula that can also be combed through the wispiest lash ends for length.
1. Vintage Gucci Watch
This little treasure, circa 1970, was a Christmas surprise from my mom, the one person who can both shop for me and keep surprises from me. She's basically a grown up, better funded version of myself (but that's fodder for another post).
What do you think of my January Loves? Have you tried any of these products? What were some of your favorite items this month?

Feb 1, 2012

Splurge vs. Save #1: MoroccanOil Intense Curl Cream vs. Organix Moroccan Curling Perfection Defining Cream

Gosh, that's a long title. Anyway, I've spent the last few years swearing that MoroccanOil Intense Curl Cream was the only product capable of taming my mane. It is a great product. Truly creamy, MoroccanOil Curl Cream hydrates my strands, obliterates flyaways and frizz (even in insane Florida humidity), and provides a smooth, touchable hold that truly lasts all day.
That said, I found a product I prefer. I'd been seeing rave reviews for the Organix line of hair products for months, so when I ran out of MoroccanOil I decided to give Organix Moroccan Argan Oil Curling Perfection Defining Cream a try because what did I have to lose? (Even if I ended up hating it, I could always rely on CVS's amazing return policy.) It ended up being, for all intents and purposes, an exact dupe of MoroccanOil Intense Curl Cream. I forget how much MoroccanOil costs in salons, but I was buying it on Ebay for around $30 for 10.2 fl. oz. (300 ml). Alternately, Organix Moroccan Curling Perfection Defining Cream retails for around $8 for 6 fl. oz. Granted, the MoroccanOil bottle is a bit bigger; you're still getting more bang for your buck with Organix at $1.03 per ounce compared to MoroccanOil at $2.94 per ounce. (Please correct me if I did that wrong. Math has never been my forte.)