#TBT – Christopher Kane for NARS

I first want to say that I am sorry for not posting during October. The past month has been hectic with school, clubs, and internships! It is almost like I have three jobs… which is a lot on one’s plate! I thought I would start Novembers blogs by showcasing my latest makeup obsession: Christopher Kane for NARS!

Christopher Kane for NARS

Christopher Kane is a London based designer with a passion for neon-neutrals. His “It Girl” is someone who prides on a fresh face with a punch of color; hence, this limited edition NARS collection is an array of soft and bright nudes with translucent finishes. Vogue titled this collection “Modern Electric” and refers to the “neoneutral” colors as wearable. With about nine pieces in this collection, I was lucky enough to get my hands on the two eyeshadows: Parallel Universe Duo and Outer Limits.

If I could describe these three shades in one word it would be mesmerizing. Each shade is so sheer and sparkly! I use these shadows on a daily basis to create iridescent, smokey eyes, and even use them as highlighters!

Did you get anything from the Christopher Kane for NARS collection? Unfortunately, these products are no longer available.

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BYOB – Build Your Own Birchbox

I am the Birchbox subscriber that cannot get enough!! Even with boxes on the way, I always take the time to BYOB (Build Your Own Birchbox) when passing the Soho oasis. The BYOB station has changed dramatically, since you can grab your own samples without someone assisting you, plus a mens BYOB. I went all out – even surprised my boyfriend with his own box filled with shaving goodies and whiskey stones. For my box, I picked samples I have been waiting to try! Luckily, the company now lets you substitute certain categories for others (hint – skip the fragrance and go for the skin or hair care).

My personalized Birchbox wasn’t my only purchase that day… I decided to try a Korean product called Peripera Ah Much Real My Cushion Blusher in Happy Coral (for more Korean beauty, check out my Face Shop post). The sponge applicator is perfect for an on-the-go look to create glowing cheeks with a peachy finish.

Have you ever done the BYOB? What do you think of monthly subscriptions?

Korean Beauty From The FACE Shop

Korean beauty is everywhere! From Allure to Refinery 29, Asian brands are taking over the market, and the press. Shopping at The FACE Shop in the Niagara Falls Casino located in Ontario, Canada was my first taste of these renowned products – sheet masks galore, unique beauty tools, and overnight masks were just many of the cool, beauty innovations.

Stars from this haul include:

Oddly, the brand does not sell its makeup online… which is definitely a bummer if a store is not located near you. I ADORE the Peach Cushion Blusher. It creates a perfect sun-kissed flush and comes with an adorable puff for application.

Have you tried any Korean beauty brands?

Frog Prince + Mario Badescu

I cannot resist a much needed Ulta visit between my classes (there is one about 5 minutes from Marist)… My most recent purchases include Frog Prince from Lipstick Queen and the Mario Badescu Hydro Moisturizer with Vitamin C, along with an it’s a 10 sample.

After seeing much social media about Frog Prince, I was ready to jump in head first to get my hands on the magical GREEN lipstick! Five stars for this product – super hydrating, lasts a few hours, adorable packaging, and turns my lips a natural, berry shade! In fact, I am pretty sure my sister just stole it for her 18-day Europe adventure!

With only trying the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion, I did not know what to expect for this moisturizer… One reason I bought it was for the travel friendly size and hydration claims. I do not notice anything significant after using this product. Just a simple moisturizer for dry skin! I prefer the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Moisturizer (review coming very soon)!!

May Vs. June Birchbox

As I listen to the Top 50 Pop Songs on iTunes Radio, a song from the was-then-Disney star, Hillary Duff, blares… I know, I was as shocked as you are! It is called “Sparks” and kind of reminds me of the ‘sparks’ in my eyes once I saw the May Birchbox placed on my desk (I had to). I was packing for a 12 day Europe journey… praying for sample sized goodies.

The Harvey Prince Yogini perfume was my signature scent while shopping in London, hiking in Scotland, and partying in Denmark! Light, citrus notes with hints of mysterious jasmine make it the perfect day-to-night formula. I also enjoyed the Lollibalm with its almost poignant rose aroma and veil pink coverage – it is my current lip obsession! I am a sucker for packaging… so, TokyoMilk’s Shea Butter Lotion in Kabuki got my heart racing! The sweet scent of vanilla and fruity twists of lychee and grapefruit create a unique combo.

I was not nearly as excited for the CōTZ Flawless Complexion with SPF 50… kind of a thick formula with an oily finish. I am a HUGE fan of the Macadamia Professional Moisture Mask – it makes my hair feel like silk! Unfortunately, the Moisture Oil Treatment does not get my vote because it is a bit too harsh on my blonde locks.

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The June Birchbox was fitting for the vibrant, sunny (and suddenly hot) month that welcomes summer ! Mine was labeled “Next Stop: Adventure” with an array of cosmetics to help you beat the heat. I am SUPER excited to try the Paula’s Choice Moisturizer because my skin has been super dry… Plus, it is a generous amount of product! The Coola Sport Sunscreen is also eye catching from the Mango scent and Caribbean turquoise packaging. I plan on taking this sample with me to Bermuda in July. Do they have fresh mangos on that island??

The Dr.Jart+ Ceramidin Cream was not a surprise. I have tried this product before from Sephora… I guess it was okay, but not significant, since I lost all memory of its effects. The Number 4 Super Comb Prep + Protect was another repeat, but this time… I remembered how much I liked this after-shower necessity! The Marcelle Waterproof Eyeliner was another dud. Instead of the dark, rich purple, I wish Birchbox offered a vibrant liner! I could totally go for an electric blue or jungle green.

The Pura Vida Lace Headband was a great addition to this box! In fact, I put it on seconds after opening for my evening treadmill run (it has Google Maps on it, which is pretty cool).

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How did you like the May and June Birchboxes? Did you find any favorites? Were you surprised with your sample choices?

Eco-Friendly Beach Bag

From finishing up a week Caribbean cruise to traveling to Bermuda, I have finally perfected my beach bag essentials – which to no surprise, consists of SPF packed products and beauty re-freshers! This colorful, hobo bag from Lilly Pulitzer fits coverups, towels, hats, and other necessities for a comfortable beach getaway. From sunscreen to perfume, here are my beauty favorites to combat the sun and stay fresh:

  • Lipstick Queen Frog Prince – truly magical! A green lipstick that turns into a magenta gloss! A pop of natural color adds to sun-kissed skin creating an effortless pout.
  • Sesame Suntan Lotion – natural, sesame aroma with a thick texture and SPF 10. A perfect sunscreen for achieving an even, dark tan. I suggest applying a high SPF sunscreen first, then using Sesame Suntan out and about on the beach!
  • Sea Spray – salty fragrance that molds beachy waves. The ultimate product to achieve “I just got off the beach” hair! Spray in before or after a sun-filled day.
  • NYX Blotting Sheets – face sunscreen is sure to leave some residue. Blot away all oil, sand, and salt with these sheets to protect your pores from natural hazards.
  • Khiel’s BB Cream – perfects, corrects, and of course, protects! A multi-use product with SPF 50 that covers all imperfections for a natural complexion. This moisturizer also works well as an everyday foundation for medium coverage.
  • Travalo Perfume Spray – the perfect travel bottle. If you are like me, I love to change my perfume every month or so to keep things interesting and unique. Travalo is life changing – you can easily transfer ANY perfume in the small bottle for everyday use, rather than carry around a delicate, full size bottle.

My non-beauty beach favorites include comfy suits, shady hats, and fluffy towels! My white beach hat (pictured above) provides 360 degrees of shade, protecting my face, shoulders, and neck. Swimsuits are the tricky part because you should feel uber comfortable in them. Naja, an eco-friendly lingerie brand, has timeless swimsuits to fit almost every body shape, especially the Faye Racerback One Piece (the navy shade matches perfectly with my Lilly bag)! I also adore the Adriana Bralettes in Marigold and Jazzy from Naja for sexy coverage under flowy coverups!

What is in your beach bag? Share with #beachessentials!

March vs. April Birchbox

Birchbox can either be the greatest part of your month, or one of the worst. Lately, it has been a bit of both. I always try to do the early sample pick (which never works out) and change up my beauty questionnaire to mix up the likelihood of my product selection. In March and April, I received boxes with duplicate products from past boxes or purchases from Birchbox. Here is a comparison of my March and April boxes!


MARCH: I ordered the Roller Lash mascara from Benefit on Birchbox and it happened to come the same day as my March box! How lucky!

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PROS: This Cargo Blush has changed my view on cheek shades. I was an all pink lady, but now I am all about the coral shades! A perfect product to enhance your summer glow! I got the Cargo Bronzer in one of my boxes a couple of months back and thought it was OK… nothing unique besides being waterproof! But why would you want waterproof blush? I cannot think of any situation where I will be dolling up my face just to jump in the pool! Can you?

CONS: I purchased an Amika gift set in January from Birchbox with my points… Got quite a bit off! But why would Birchbox then put a product I purchased from them in my box? Just a little annoying… wish it was another brand! By the way – Amika has phenomenal dry shampoo! Absorbs all the oils and leaves you with a blow out look.


APRIL: I absolutely ADORE this box! Such a great collaboration with Rifle Paper Co. Definitely check out their website for extraordinary stationary!

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PROS: When I saw the sample selections for April, I was immediately drawn to the Bee Venom face mask… BEE VENOM?? What kind of ingredient is that?? It smells wonderful, is very soothing, and completely transformed my skin from a dry bone to a blossoming flower (a little cheesy, but it’s the truth). This is going to be my next purchase from Birchbox!! BEWARE – if you are allergic to bees, avoid the venom at all costs! Birchbox even sent a warning for costumers who are allergic.

CONS: I mentioned in a blog (see here) that I get tons and tons of lotions from my boxes! STOP! I do not need any more body or hand lotion…! I should have taken a picture of my lotion stash for this post. Plus, the Temple Spa lotion was a REPEAT! My first Birchbox repeat and it wasn’t even a product I liked. Oh well… cannot win them all!

New All Time Favorite – YSL Lip Oil

Volupté Tint-In-Oil from Yves Saint Laurent is one of the BEST lip products I have tried this year. The oil is not too sticky, but rather a moisturizing sheen that seeps into your lips. The colors are also quite nice with shades in between orange and pink hues. Apply a few layers to increase color vibrancy. I got the shade Pink About Me 8. The wand is fabulous – the perfect shape for a quick application. The smell is PHENOMENAL! I never would of thought a lip oil would be so scrumptious, like Fruit Loops or some type of fruit punch! I highly recommend this lip oil to anyone who loves a moisturizing, non-sticky, easy to apply lip product!

Lipstick Tray of 2015

Lipstick – each vibrant shade can transform your look & day 

FACE Stockholm Lipsticks

I am falling in love all over again with lipsticks. This acrylic tray holds 24 tubes and allows you to display the shades you love! Most of my collection (at least the products pictured here) is from FACE Stockholm. With over 100 shades to choose from, FACE has it ALL!

Here are my Top 5 from this collection:

  1. Strawberry Veil – a sheer pink. Strawberry Veil is my GO TO lipstick. Easy to apply, stays on long, semi-natural looking, and moisturizes – the perfect combinations for a daily lipstick!
  2. Smile – a hot fuchsia shade with a dose of shimmer. I cannot get over how bright, fun, and eccentric Smile is! It honestly is a color that will brighten and liven anyone’s day.
  3. Bästa – a deep marsala. I adore this trendy shade. With Marsala being the Pantone color of 2015, Bästa will take your style and #FOTD to the next level! P.S. – Bästa means supreme in Swedish!
  4. Success – a sophisticated, toned pink. A universal lip color, like Success, is a necessity for all makeup collections! Similar to a day and night wardrobe, this lipstick can go from the work environment to the latest social event.
  5. Matte Sahara – a true nude with a matte effect. This is a perfect lipstick to pair with a dramatic, smokey eye. I think it is sooo simple and elegant yet edgy. It really is a twist from an ordinary nude with a slight pink hue and matte properties.

Interested in other shades? Here is the full list starting from bottom left and going up: Leva, Matte Sahara, Softly, Diva – Light Mist, Matte Fashion, Wineberry Veil, Ansvar – Naked, Cranberry Veil, Bästa, Mantra – Fame Factory, Strawberry Veil, Instinct, Smile – Success, Silk, Stunning Matte, Matte Desert – Friendship Veil, Vibe, Flirt, Raspberry Veil

Lip Savers

Winter is rough on skin since all moisture is drained from the air… Plus, we might not be receiving all the vitamin D necessary for the perfect glow. One thing we can do – SAVE OUR LIPS!

I am a Lipstick Queen! Since working for FACE Stockholm, my collection has grown from 5 lipsticks to almost 30 (oops). A colorful pout adds to my vibrant style while increasing confidence. One thing I really really cannot stand – when my lipstick is cracked from dry, chapped, sore lips. Therefore, I am on a mission to find lip treatments that will conquer dryness to allow for smooth lipstick application.

It is a successful mission so far. I have found staple products I use each evening to nourish my lips for the next day full of color (and the challenge of picking out a lipstick).

  • FACE Stockholm Lip Treatment – This slightly tinted formula is the perfect go-to for a quick pick me up. It is easy to apply, looks very classy, and keeps lips hydrated for a decent amount of time.
  • Fabulips “Pout’-o-matic” – I saved my Ulta coupons for weeks to get this spa powered lip system. The kit comes with a lip exfoliating tool and the Fabulips Sugar Lips Scrub. The steps are simple – put a little less than a dimes worth of scrub onto the polishing head then scrub onto lips until sugar has dissolved. Results are soft, smooth lips free of dry cracks. I enjoy the Bliss sugar scrub, but decided to give the tool a try with a LUSH lip scrub.
  • The Kiss Lip Scrub – This is obviously a repeat product if you read my LUSH Valentine’s Haul. I cannot get enough of this pink, tangy sugar with sprinkles and confetti hearts! I used this scrub with the Fabulips set and loved the results even more. LUSH scrubs are a bit more course than the Bliss one making the exfoliation rougher – a plus for scrapping away all troubled skin.
  • The Kiss Lip Gloss – A favorite from last Valentine’s Day! This Lip Gloss is tough to apply on the go since it involved dabbing your finger into the product then applying. Although, the gloss is very easy to rub into your hands as a moisturizer since it is not sticky. The Kiss adds a slight pink to the lips with a whole lot of shimmer.
  • fresh Sugar Lip Serum – A true gem from one of my Sephora hauls. This serum is the perfect remedy for night time (almost like a face mask). After exfoliation, smoother your lips with this smoothing serum. It is a cooling, firm feeling at first that turns into a buttery balm. An all time favorite!