Monday, September 9, 2013

September Shoes | Jeffrey Campbell "Foxtrot"

 There's been so much hype over Jeffrey Campbell shoes over the last couple of years, and I finally decided to get myself a pair. Truthfully, I haven't seen a style that I liked until now. Suddenly I have quite a few pairs of JC shoes on my wish list- and I started with the "Foxtrot".

I absolutely love the black, simple strap style of heeled sandal. They just look super chic, classic, and compliments absolutely everything. I love how they are a bit "chunkier" and go well with bulkier clothing. The suede material caught my eye, as well as the velcro strap. It's still classic, but a bit more casual for every day. Zara's leather single strap sandal has a similar idea, but are much less comfortable (but still absolutely gorgeous). 

These shoes are quite comfortable and easy to walk around in. Because the strap across the toes is a bit thicker it doesn't dig into the foot. The sole is soft and padded, and the rubber bottom provides great traction. My only (minor) complaint is that sometimes the velcro comes undone walking down stairs (living in Manhattan comes with those pesky subway stairs!). It's not the biggest deal though, I can always loosen the velcro beforehand. These are the perfect cross between heels and comfort shoes. Loveee.

I purchased these at Nordstrom, and they come in black, red, mint, tan, and black/tan in sizes 5-12, and they fit true to size. I've been wearing mine everywhere, with dresses to ripped boyfriend jeans. Definitely one of my favorite pairs of shoes.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Review | Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer

I hope everyone is having a great summer so far! The New York area has had an awful heat wave the last week or so, making it downright impossible to stay outside. Temperatures rose to the high 90s-100F with full humidity, and needless to say, came with some makeup disasters. I broke out the Hourglass Veil mineral primer I purchased a few weeks ago and put it to the test, and it's done fabulously. 

This clean, satin-finish formula helps keep makeup looking fresh and prevents fading. Veil Mineral Primer also absorbs excess oils and minimizes the appearance of pores by evenly distributing light to help hide and soften skin imperfections and fine lines. (From Sephora Website)

I picked up the smaller, travel size option, at $18 for 0.33oz, with SPF 15. The larger bottle is 1oz, at $52. It comes in a small frosted glass bottle with a pump. I love the packaging- it's sturdy yet simple, and super pretty. It doesn't take up much space in your makeup bag either which is always a plus. Although it's quite pricey, I think it's worth the money:

The primer comes out of the pump white, and is suuuuper light in consistency- similar to the texture of whipped cream, but lighter. A little goes a long way, it has no scent, and repels water! I love how it has SPF but doesn't smell like sunscreen. I have super oily skin (I wear MUFE HD foundation, and have to blot two hours or so later if not sooner). With this primer, I was good for 5 or 6 hours. And although my face got oily, it didn't look as shiny, and there was absolutely no makeup meltdown! 

"Veil Mineral Primer is formulated with naturally derived titanium dioxide and zinc oxide instead of chemical sun-blocking agents. This water-resistant primer is also 100% free of fragrance, oil, and gluten."

This is probably more than enough to cover the face.

Keep blending...

Blended in at the top. It has the slightest sheen, but not at all sparkly. It leaves the skin feeling beautifully soft, smooth, and even.

Running water over my hand, the area where the primer was applied was not affected at all.

Overall this is an amazing product. I love how it keeps my make up looking brighter for longer. I haven't had any breakouts or problems due to the product. I look forward to trying other Hourglass products- which ones are your favorite?

Repurchase? Absolutely.
0.33 oz//$18

Wednesday, June 26, 2013


I voluntarily jumped out of a plane. Prospective.

It's been something I've always wanted to do, and finally I figured, what the heck. It was an above-average Tuesday afternoon, and a couple of friends and I made our way to the hangar. Upon arriving, we met a few people who just jumped, and they couldn't have looked happier (with the exception of one guy, who was basically hyperventilating). Because I hadn't done this before, it had to be tandem (with an instructor). After we signed pages and pages of waivers, watched a brief instructional video, and suited up, it was time to go.

 My friend's instructor looked so unenthused! But I could be convinced to jump out of planes all day.

Looking up (at the plane we jumped from). You can't tell from the picture, but the plane was TINY. It barely fit 5 people, including the pilot...Needless to say, it wouldn't have been a good scene for the claustrophobic.

The view (from 10,000 ft/~ 2 miles high) was absolutely breathtaking! I wasn't nervous at all

Although the whole thing took under 10 minutes, it's probably the best ten minutes yet. Apparently the certification to jump alone is available with three tandem jumps and a few hours' class. I'm super tempted. The instructors made for an outstanding experience, and I'll definitely be going back.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Haul | Summer and Skincare

Happy SUMMER! Also the season of little-to-no-makeup and spontaneous getaways, all of which call for fabulous skin. Clearly this means I've been shopping too much...

 Soap & Glory Scrub 'em and Leave 'em 

I'm quite the fan of Soap & Glory products, my favorite being the Sugar Crush line. I'm on a mission to try all of their scrubs, and this one is next in line!

Korres Greek Yoghurt Sleeping Facial
I've accumulated SO many Sephora points, and this is one of the perks.

Origins Super Spot Remover

I was using a Clean & Clear spot treatment before, but I found it to be wayyyy too harsh and dried out my skin more than necessary- never cute. I've read such great things about this product.

Urban Decay De-Slick (travel size)
Urban Decay Good Karma Optical Blurring Brush

I've never tried a finishing spray before (Caudalie & Fix+ doesn't count!), especially one that controls oil. Loving the sound of that! I've also been eyeing this foundation brush for the longest time. The synthetic bristles won't absorb any make up product, so all of it gets transferred to the skin. Excited to try this!

Boscia Nightly Hydration
Boscia Self-Defense Vital Antioxidant Moisture

I used to use the Nightly Hydration, and I thought it was time for a new bottle. I haven't been very good at moisturizing at night, but it's an important step.

Diorskin Nude BB Creme

Aside from the gorgeous and simple packaging, I was on the market for another BB cream (I've run out of the Smashbox one! Which is an amazing BB cream. Review is here). 

Diorsnow UV Shield in Translucent

My first ever facial SPF! enough said. It doesn't have a terribly strong sunscreen scent, and isn't super sticky from what I could tell. So far so good!

Laura Mercier Flawless Skin Face Polish

I've used this product a few times since I bought it, and I've already noticed such a difference. My skin is smoother and more radiant after just one use! Loving this.

Have you tried any of these products before? What are your skincare staples for summer?

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Review | Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream

Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream $39 (full size) $19.50 (travel/half size) 
Shade: Light (comes in 5 shades)

"This multitasking tinted cream formula with SPF 35 moisturizes, primes, perfects, controls oil, and protects for flawless skin on set and beyond. Formulated with emollients and optical pearl pigments, this BB Cream gives skin a glowing, ethereal look and provides a hydrating veil for the complexion to maintain moisture on the surface of the skin. With its ultrasmoothing finish, it instantly re-texturizes to create a smooth canvas and enhances the wear of makeup. Ideal even for oily complexions, this expert formula with UVA/UVB protection helps inhibit oil to prevent the complexion from getting shiny throughout the day without the typical chalky matte finish. " (copied from Sephora)

I love the idea of BB creams, but $39 is a bit on the expensive side for a product I was iffy to try. I was super excited while browsing at Sephora and found that they have a travel size option (haul is here)! It's $19.50 for 0.5 fl oz (while the full size is 1 oz). Although it's still on the pricey side, I figured why not.

This product claims to control oil and provide a smooth, glowy finish, and have SPF 35 (which is a huge plus, since I hate wearing SPF separately). I have to say that the product lives up to its claims! I have combination skin with an oily T-zone, and usually, when wearing foundations, I have to blot every couple of hours, or my face will be noticeably shiny (never cute). I didn't have to blot all day! (I did anyways after 8 hours, but I wasn't noticeably shiny).

At first, the BB cream comes off as a bit too light, but it warms up to my skintone as I blend it in. I set it with MAC Mineralize Skinfinish natural in Medium using the Real Techniques powder brush, and the combination provides for a natural looking finish that lasts all day! The consistency is similar, but probably a lighter than Laura Mercier's Silk Creme foundation (review here). LM's foundation is creamer though. It's definitely thicker than many BB creams, and doesn't smell like anything. The coverage more on the sheer side, but it does even out the skin pretty well. I use a bit of concealer to cover any problem spots. My go-to is MAC studio finish concealer.  I've tried a bunch of BB creams (Boscia, L'Oreal, Maybelline, Revlon), this one is probably my favorite.

Looks a little too light...

But blends in perfectly!

Repurchase? Yes

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Review | MAC Angel Lipstick

As spring is settling in, I've been wearing brighter lipsticks, and sadly putting away the darker shades (which is unfortunate since I LOVE Darkside//MAC). I purchased MAC's Angel a couple of months ago (the haul is here), and I thought I'd put in my two cents about it.

The MAC website accurately describes this as a "soft pink", and the finish is a frost. The description sounds perfect and the lipstick looks gorgeous in the tube. There's so much hype over this product, and it's also one of MAC's best selling lipsticks. 

The color is absolutely beautiful. It's not too cool or too warm, so it goes with most skin tones. 
 I'm not a big fan of the finish and the formula though. The product sits rather messily on my lips. It seems to accentuate and sink into fine lines, as well as cling to all the wrong parts if the lips aren't completely exfoliated. I also have rather pigmented lips, and the color doesn't always mix well (though this can be fixed by putting concealer over the lips first). Some days I love this, and other days I don't. Lately it's been leaning towards don't. It takes much too much effort to make it look nice on.

 Angel swatches so beautifully on the hand, just not so much on the lips. I don't find that the formula lasts that long either. The longer I keep it on my lips, the messier it seems to look. Maybe I just got a bad tube? Have you tried this lipstick? what do you think?

have found that MAC Angel looks absolutely stunning layered over NARS Dolce Vita lipstick. I wouldn't go out and buy both, but if you have it, give it a try! If the finish were a cremesheen or even a satin, I'd probably like that better. I know that Angel comes in a lipgloss, so perhaps the formula of that looks a lot better on the lips. I really wanted to like this lipstick! Oh well.

Light, medium, and heavy swatches (top to bottom)

Repurchase: No

Monday, April 8, 2013

Review | Caudalie SOS Thirst Quenching Serum

I picked this up a couple of months ago (the haul is here!), and it's been my go-to moisturizer lately, especially since the weather's been getting warmer and I don't want to use anything particularly thick. I've been quite the Caudalie fan the past couple of years. The packaging is heavy, substantial, and made of glass. It's a milky-white liquid with a rather thin consistency, but not so thin that you wouldn't be able to get it all on your face ( if that makes any sense). This moisturizing serum comes in a bottle with 1.0fl oz of product, and retails for $48 at Sephora

PROS: I absolutely love that it absorbs completely and extremely quickly, and is not the least bit oily. Once it absorbs into the skin, it leaves no residue, only your skin feels moisturized, with a matte-natural. It works wonders on my combination to oily T-zone, and haven't had any problems with it so far. It doesn't contribute to the oilyness either. I'd imagine if you have dry skin this would work as well, but may need another moisturizer on top. One pump is more than enough for my entire face.

CONS: It seems as though each pump gives a lot of product, and it seems like I'll go through the bottle rather quickly, which is unfortunate due to the price. I'm not the biggest fan of the smell, but it doesn't bother me either. It has an earthy scent- unlike the average moisturizers. If you don't like the Caudalie Beauty Elixir scent (smells a bit fresher than this serum), I don't think you'll like this either.

Repurchase? yes.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Haul | MAC, Lush, Ulta

I'm so excited that this week is spring break. It'll be nice to have some time to myself and cross a bunch of things off the checklist. After work today, I ran errands and picked up a few necessaries (ignore my excitement about the gummy vitamins! I hate taking daily vitamins, hoping these will be easier) - while I was out, I found a few fun things as well.

My favorite shampoo from years ago was one by Marc Anthony- it came in a pink bottle. I don't remember exactly what it was, but I LOVED everything about it. It smelled great, made my hair look fantastic, and was pretty inexpensive. I think they've discontinued it though, I can't find it anywhere! Ulta was having a buy one get one half off sale, so I figured I'd try this one. (It took all my efforts not to buy cartloads of drugstore make up too, as much of those were buy one get one half off as well)

Just a repurchase of my favorite mask! It's minty, green, and cheap ($4!) and the bottle is 8oz- it'll last forever. It's great for oily, acne prone skin, and is not irritating. I wouldn't recommend this if you have dry skin though.

I've heard so many good things about this lip scrub. It's taken me a while to shell out the $10 for this, but hopefully it'll be worth it. I've been using the lip scrub from the Body Shop, but it wasn't doing it for me. It was so soft it would break, and didn't properly exfoliate either. High hopes for Sweet Lips! It smells amazing.

MAC Brush Cleanser
Fix +

I strolled into MAC to pick up a bottle of brush cleanser, and tossed in a travel sized Fix+. I've never tried this make up setting spray, so we'll see how it goes. I also wanted to get the Woodwinked eyeshadow, but it wasn't on display. I took it as a sign that it wasn't meant to be. siiiigh.

I've always been a huge fan of Ponds. The line was introduced to me by my mom, who always had a tub of the cold cream on her vanity. I came across the new Luminous Clean line and picked up two items. The Cream Cleanser "draws out trapped impurities and make up to brighten dull skin". I purchased the day lotion to replace the Ponds Clarant B3 I just ran out of. The Day lotion has SPF 15 and doesn't smell like sunscreen! Both products have a light rose scent. So far so good. The Luminous Clean line also includes an exfoliating cleanser and cleansing towelettes, all at super affordable prices of around $6.

Elizabeth Arden is another favorite of my mom's, so I figured I'd give it a try. Upon sampling the product when I got home, It's an orange petroleum-ish cream that reminds me a bit of Vaseline and Aquaphor, except the Eight Hour Cream gets completely absorbed! So far, I'm not a fan of the scent, reminds me of cardboad. Hopefully I'll get over the scent, I've heard it's a wonderful product. 

Have you tried any of these products?

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Haul | Ray Bans, Wedge Sneakers, Smashbox

Happy Saturday! I've been doing a bit of shopping this week, as my best friend spent the week in New York on spring break. I thought I'd share a few things I picked up:

Ray Ban Boyfriend Flat Top (available here)
 I've been wanting a pair of Ray-Bans for a while, but I haven't found a pair that I've been satisfied with. They've always been too small, too colorful, too something. I came across these on the Nordstrom website a while ago, thought they were cute, but put them out of my mind...until I saw them at the mall! Tried them on, and fell in love. They're still the wayfarer style that I love, but slightly different, oversized, and look a bit different than the classic ones everyone has. It also goes with everything! Love love love them. (I bought the tortoise shell ones)

Platform Wedge Sneakers//Go Jane 
I've been seeing the platform wedge sneaker trend for a while now, and thought I'd give it a go. I wasn't sure I'd love the style, so I wasn't up for splurging on the $200 pair at Nordstrom. I was browsing around Amazon, and found these super cute alternatives from Go Jane! Annnnnd they were only $30 something. Fantastic. These aren't leather, but they're so cute, so comfortable, and look more expensive than they were- which is always a plus. I've worn them twice so far, and gotten many compliments both times!

Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream//Light

I was so excited when I saw the travel size version of this at Sephora the other day. This has been on my to-try list for a while, but I couldn't justify spending the $40 on something I'm not sure I would like. I thought this size was a good alternative. At 0.5 oz (half size), it' was $19.50, which is about half the price (full size is $39/1oz). I may do a post once I've tried it out. (I don't think the half-size is available on the website, just in the store!)

Any favorite purchases lately??