23 August 2013

Ulta Beauty HAUL and REVIEWS

Hey gals! I haven't posted in AGES because I've been updating the overall look of my blog (you like?) and stressing over NOT ONLY the currently half-broken state of my iMac (I use iMovie for my YouTube videos - you see the problem, yes?) BUT ALSO the currently not-even-close-to-done state of my AP summer assignments.  Anyway, my life has been crazy, but I'm back now :) So here's a few things I picked up about two days ago from the fairy wonderland that is ULTA...

 Real Techniques Stippling Brush
The Real Techniques brushes are my absolute favorite.  Starting with the most shallow reason why, they look awesome - sleek and high-end while still looking young and fun (orange, purple, and pink? Hell yeah).  Secondly, they get the job done right, and there are many jobs to be done with a single brush - you can honestly use them for whatever you want, and the result is still fantastic.  I haven't used it yet (the packaging is just too beautiful, I didn't want to open it haha), but I plan to use it for my face (following the Real Techniques Foundation Brush) just to get that perfect, smooth finish.
 Burt's Bees Natural Face Solutions: Intense Hydration Night Cream
So I've always loved Burt's Bees, but because of their slightly-more-pricey products, I've never actually tried anything other than their hand salve (amazing) and their lip balm (ten out of ten).  I bought this out of panic and necessity: I've changed my acne routine (I'll do another post about that later!) and it's begun to dry out my face around my nose and mouth.  Believe me when I say that white crust around the outside of your lips IS NOT CUTE.  I saw "Intense Hydration" and instantly picked it up for this reason.  Also, it has clary sage, which, if you don't know, is an herbal plant (I think it's part of the mint family, which explains the fantastic smell of this product) known for its high anti-oxidant content and ability to clear infection.  FUN FACT: If you get it in an essential oil, it can even help to balance female hormones :)

REVIEW: Simply put, this stuff is incredible.  When I first opened it, there was a bit of product on the underside of the cap (you know how that happens), which I just dabbed with my finger to use for the first time (I tend to be very cautious because my skin is so sensitive).  The next day, I woke up and the skin around my mouth and nose was 95% repaired - no white crust, no look of dryness, only a SLIGHT roughness in the previously-affected areas.  Last night I used it again, and I woke up this morning with ABSOLUTELY FLAWLESS skin, and I haven't even used the product from the tub yet (I'm still using dabs from the underside of the cap)!  Extra Plus: it made my lips super smooth and plump-looking.  Anyway, I highly recommend - after all, it isn't technically expensive, just a bit pricier than your run-of-the-mill drugstore lotion or cream.  Then again, this is NOT just a run-of-the-mill product, so it's totally worth it.

Andrea EyeQ's Makeup Remover Pads
I hate taking off my makeup - no, I don't think you understand how much I hate it.  It's late (I'm talking LATE) at night, and I'm about to fall over from my explosively exciting day, and I have to turn to the mirror and basically scrub my eyelashes off with make-up remover wipes that claim to remove waterproof mascara and liner.  I bought this as a test, just to see if the results (and the laborious process) would be any different.  A few things that specifically drew me to this product were the words "Oil-Free," that they're "Extra-Gentle," (who wants wrinkles, right?) and the fact that they claim to be "Perfect for contact lens wearers."  Makeup remover that if safe for contact lens wearers seems to be pretty standard, but it's actually tougher to find than you would think, so this product was a great find for that reason.

REVIEW: I used to pull away my makeup remover wipe and see at least three eyelashes (so sad) and a bunch of black residue, but when I looked in the mirror, the job was not even close to being done.  I CAN SAY NOW THAT I WILL NO LONGER HAVE TO ENDURE LATE-NIGHT DISAPPOINTMENT OR THE UNTIMELY DEATH OF MY EYELASHES.  I used this last night (I had a ton of makeup on yesterday because I had places to be) and the eye-makeup, for lack of a better word, melted off.  It only took about three swipes (on each eye) before my eyes were almost completely clear of makeup, and I hadn't even thought about grabbing a standard makeup remover wipe yet.  HIGHLY RECOMMEND. 

09 August 2013

How I Style: Maxi Skirts!

Master the Trend: Maxi Skirts!

Master the Trend: Maxi Skirts! by the-saltine-herself

Hey ladies! Here's just a quick guide to how I would style maxi skirts, since they are a very particular trend.  Sometimes, when you have a piece thats so flowy (something that floats AWAY from your body, in other words), it's hard to style and not look "frumpy" or "baggy."  I happen to like when things float away from my body, so maxi's are some of my favorites :)

How I Style (Left to Right):

1. Lace Crop Top + Dotted Skirt: In this outfit, I mixed print and texture.  A combination like this always makes for a visually interesting outfit, and will almost always turn out beautiful (unless you make some crucial mistakes).  In order to avoid a fashion mishap, try to match the colors, keep them complimentary, or keep them in the same color palette (different shades of blue, etc.).  For accessories (the pink necklace), I used a color that wasn't otherwise seen in this simple outfit.  I kept the shoes and accessories complimentary so that they would pop but not seem out of place (pastels always complement eachother).  Overall, this outfit shows how you can connect colors and how you can mix prints and textures.

2. Print Skirt + Solid Top: This outfit is pretty easy to put together, because it's showing a print with a solid.  The thing about this outfit that makes it special is obviously the skirt, making that the focus.  At the same time, though, the top is not without detail - there is a scalloped hem on the tank, allowing it to hold its own and not fade completely into the background.  The skirt is so visually busy that the solid top tones down the outfit, which is good because it creates a BALANCE.  This outfit exhibits the "matching colors" idea as well as the "print and solid" trend, because black is in the skirt.  Black IS A NEUTRAL, though, just like white and beige, so it would work with this skirt even if it didn't have black.  Simple sandals top off the entire ensemble.

3. Floral Bustier + Solid Skirt: This outfit exhibits one of this year's newest trends, which is the bustier.  Bustiers are cut very close to the body (they are also referred to as corsets), and so the combination with the skirt that floats away from the body, again, creates a very appealing BALANCE.  Balance is always the goal in creating a perfect outfit.  Also, the top is cropped, so you're going short on top and long on the bottom.  The shoes are a neutral, allowing the colors in the top and skirt take the main stage, but (just like the black shirt in the last outfit) are not completely boring, as they have the sparkles on the toe to keep them looking interesting.  The colors match between the top and the skirt, both having a pale pink shade.  I added the short cross necklace simply to fill the space between the face / neck and the chest, although this isn't necessary to perfect the outfit.

4. Starbucks Tank + Chevron Skirt: In this outfit, I used a printed skirt and a shirt that can be considered printed OR solid.  Many times, shirts that have a big print (you've seen shirts with large cat-faces, right? Haha) like the Starbucks logo here, are considered solid because that print embodies the whole shirt.  Anyway, because of the "solid" shirt, the printed skirt doesn't seem overpowering or overdone - it looks very casual.  The colors are pretty much the same top to bottom, creating a very put-together vibe as well as allowing the green in the tank to stand out.  When you have black and white, usually, it's already a statement in itself, so accessories don't need to be the super-standout pieces, which is why I've chosen simple sunglasses and black sandals to complement this outfit.

ALRIGHT that seems to be everything! I hope you took a few style tips from this so that you can wear your maxi skirt with killer confidence :) They are such beautiful pieces - honestly, everyone should own at least one .... or four ...

Thanks so much for checking out this post!  Make sure you follow my blog and comment below which outfits were your favs! I personally like one and four the best ;)
Stay tuned for my YouTube videos, blow some extra time on my Polyvore, and feel free to stalk my Pinterest EVERY SINGLE DAY, haha ;)

Love you all


07 August 2013

Manicure: August Grapevine

Hello all! I haven't posted my manicure in a while because I've been terribly lazy (as in, I've been giving myself quick french manis for the last 2 weeks or so) and haven't had anything on my nails worth posting.  The wait is over, though! I pained my nails a dark purple with some mint on the tips, hence the "grapevine" reference, haha.  Anyways, I hope you enjoy! 

Unfortunately, my pictures didn't do the colors justice (sometimes the lighting in my house goes super funky).  The dark purple was Revlon's "Bold Sangria," and the mint was Sally Hansen's "Mint Sorbet."  Both are absolutely beautiful alone but I decided I would combine them just to switch things up a bit.  Also, the mint brightens up the purple so the manicure doesn't look too winter-y.  Anyway, that's everything :)

Thanks so much for checking out this post! I'll have 2 Haul videos posted shortly, so keep your eyes open on my YouTube channel :) 

Love you all