Makeup Wars: 5 Beauty Resolutions That I BETTER Stick To In 2014

Beauty Resolutions

I’m not the type to make annual resolutions (I’m a fan of smaller weekly and monthly goals) but when my girls thought of the idea to do beauty resolutions, I just couldn’t pass this one up. Part of me wants to blame my laziness and frugality on being a new mom but dude, my babe is almost a year old. I can’t use this “I’m a new mom and don’t have time for anything” spiel forever, can I? Soooo, here are some things that I blame to change and institute in 2014.

Wash my face every night.

It’s a bit embarrassing to admit that I’ve gone to bed without washing my face. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who does this but I’ve made too much of a habit out of it. 9pm hits and the old lady in me doesn’t want to do anything that requires lifting a hand. At the very least I can invest in face wipes to wipe off the makeup IF I’m not going to bust suds nightly. But still…busting suds is better.

Wear a full face of makeup at least once a week.

In the 6+ years I’ve been into makeup, I’ve gone through 2 extremes. I went through wearing makeup every day like my life depended on it to not wearing anything at all. I’d like to meet myself in the middle and at least commit to wearing eye shadow once a week. I don’t want my skills to disappear on account of my laziness.

If nail polish starts chipping, remove it.

I know. I know. This is bad. I really should know better. Chipping nail polish is the worst but I’ve spotted myself rockin’ this like it’s a trend. And that needs to stop. ASAP.

Do weekly hair treatment

I’ve always been lazy in the hair department and for the most part my hair continues to look relatively healthy. But a lil’ weekly treatment wouldn’t hurt. I’m going to check out the natural hair blogs to see what nourishing treatment I can do to help with shine, manageable and all around hair health.

Spend $50 a month on new products

Back in the day, I spent well over $50 a month on makeup. And now I don’t spend anything. My priorities have changed and I was pinching pennies for quite some time but I think I can afford to invest in some new and pretty beauty baubles. Besides, I deserve it, don’t I? I work hard yo!

 

Check out the beauty resolutions that my girls have!

A New View in 2014

I can’t believe that I’m just now doing a post in the new year. In the past I’d be all apologetic about disappearing but meh…I’m starting to think that y’all may be used to my sporadic behavior. And that’s not a good thing. I should really stick to a schedule and not leave people hanging.

Has 2014 been good to you so far?

Pine trees

I love the start of a new year. It’s renewing and refreshing. Granted, I feel like you don’t need to wait until a new year to make changes in your life, but if you do, then hey…it’s all good. Better some change at the beginning of the year than no change at all. I’ve been so inspired by nature this year.

Tree over lake

Every day at around 10am, I walk a mile around the perimeter of my office. I look forward to this walk because it’s my chance to get away from the computer, to stretch and look at the sky. That mile walk is the only exercise I get each day so I make the most of it. It’s my little retreat from work, stress, deadlines and social media. Oh, social media. I am apart of the Overshare Generation and it can be so overwhelming sometimes. I’ve been diving into books more and plunging into the lives of fictitious characters is far more entertaining than the “OMG, my big boy is using the potty!” posts that my friends post on Facebook. Sorry, not sorry.

In beauty news, I’ve been rockin’ dark purple nail polish nonstop.

nail polish

OPI’s Miss You-niverse is just…yas! Far from a unique purple polish, I know, but every time it starts a chippin’, I remove it and apply it again. It’s my signature shade for the season.

Here’s hoping that I can be more active in the blogspace this year. Motherhood consumed me (unapoletically so) last year and like many mothers I struggle to find time to myself to do the things that I once enjoyed. But I’m trying. I suspect that it’ll be far easier once Elle sleeps through the night. Yes. This girl is almost a year old and still wakes up every 4-5 hours to grace us with her gorgeous face. We’re so lucky.

Enjoy your day!

Post Holiday Giveaway: Score A Bag Of Goodies From Walgreens and P&G!

OnMyWayToFab

The holidays have come and gone and the lovely people at P&G and Walgreens want to make sure you are on your way to fabulous. Both companies have partnered up with Tim Gunn and the People’s Choice Awards to put together a lovely bag of goodies to make sure you are fabulous during your holiday parties and gatherings. From Pantene Damage Detox Cream to Studio 35 Beauty nail polish remover pads we want to make sure you are looking good from head to toe. The bags is full of awesome things, but here are a few of my favorites that I received as samples.

  • The COVERGIRL Bombshell Volume By Lashblast is an amazing mascara. With its 2-step process, it maximizes your lashes to get them longer and fuller. I usually do not like two step mascaras because I think they are pointless, but this mascara actually works and I have been getting a lot of compliments when I wear it.
  • Olay Regenerist Advance Anti-Aging Cream is the perfect gift for your mother or favorite aunt. Olay says that  “In just one day it reduces the appearance of lines, boost hydration and brightness. By Week 2 your skin is noticeably firmer and skin elasticity is improved.” Nice!
  • Venus and Olay Sugarberry Exfoliate Razor is wonderful. It is just now getting cooler in Florida, but every other day I can sneak in a dress or skirt without wearing tights. Having hairy legs is NOT an accessory that is in style. The Venus & Olay razor made my legs silky smooth and hasn’t dried out my skin like other razors.
  • Delish Milk Chocolate Salted Caramel combines my two favorite things; chocolate and caramel. The touch of salt sends your taste buds on a ride that you will want to get on again and again.
  • Studio 35 Blender Brush is a great blending brush if you are new to liquid foundation. I have just started wearing liquid and the 35 blender brush blends perfect giving my skin an airbrushed look and feel.

Want to press your luck to try and win this bag of awesomeness? Enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win! Is the Rafflecopter taking too long to load for you? Enter here!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Lipstick League: Weekly Links, Volume 114

Something About Berry

Yay for another post from the The Lipstick League! We are a group of beauty bloggers, bound together by the desire to save the world with beauty, one post at a time!

For the month of December, we’re super-sizing The Lipstick League
and giving you double the fun from each member!

 

Clumps of Mascara – I don’t think I’ve ever loved a blush as much as I love these little Too Faced Sweethearts. Aren’t they just preciiiious?

EauMG – Hug your auntie! EauMG has last minute gift ideas for sweet nieces and teens!

EauMG – Attention fellow carb lovers, Victoria reviews a gourmand by L’Artisan Parfumeur that smells like woods and baking bread. It’s the ultimate comfort fragrance.

Gouldylox Reviews – This pre-‘poo treatment changed my hair dramatically for the better.

Gouldylox Reviews – Excited about the movie American Hustle? Here’s how to get the looks from the movie!

Lipglossiping – Embraces the spirit of the season with some vampy berry lips courtesy of Aveda!

My Beauty Bunny – Is thrilled to announce the launch of the My Beauty Bunny Cruelty-Free All-Natural AHA Facial Moisturizer! It’s vegan, GMO-free, paraben-free, and oil-free, and packed with good for your skin ingredients.

My Beauty Bunny – Takes a look at The Organic Pharmacy’s vibrant and shimmery All That Glitters nail polish collection and whips up a simple holiday-themed manicure!

Nouveau Cheap – Looking for some last-minute gifts for the bath & body lovers in your life? Here are my picks from Lush for Holiday 2013.

Nouveau Cheap – New for 2014, come take a peek at the Maybelline Color Show Street Art Collection.

Pink Sith – Only a few more days until Christmas! Here are 10 beauty stocking stuffers, all $25 or less, to help complete your list.

Pink Sith – Need a kickass red lipstick to wear to your next PepsiCo Board Meeting to tell them this isn’t your first time at the rodeo? Then you need NARS Guy Bourdin Cinematic Lipstick in Future Red!

Prime Beauty – is getting ready for the holidays with bareMinerals Crystallized Full Face Collection, a blend of iridescent, holographic joy AND it’s on sale. Happy Holidays!

Prime Beauty – found a fabulous gift for the traveler. Whether you’re going away for the weekend or on a long distance trip, you will definitely want the Jonny Bag with you!

Phyrra – shares the best cruelty free beauty gifts for under $30!

Phyrra – loves all things sparkly! Here are her Top 10 Favorite Glittery Beauty Products.

we heart this – reviews bareMinerals Complexion Superstars gift set, and gives you “WOW” worthy before and after images.

we heart this – implores all Black Phoenix Alchemy perfume oil fans; you NEED Scrappy Damsel! It’s a near dupe for their infamous scent Underpants…

Beauty Junkies Unite – Don’t miss your chance to enter to win 5 of the newest haircare products from the NUANCE Salma Hayek line found exclusively at CVS!

Question of the Week:

You can only buy one drugstore mascara for the rest of your life.
Which do you choose??

B says, “Seriously? How can I pick? I can’t. I just can’t. No really…I can’t.”

Can you pick? What drugstore mascara are you absolutely loving?

See you next week!

Esposo Reviews: A watch made out of…wood?

JORD watch on wrist

If you ask the wife, she’ll tell you I have an obsession with watches. If you ask me, I’ll simply inform you that I have a distinct appreciation for quality time pieces that are affordable (usually), functional (always), and just look damn good. So when she asked me if I was interested in reviewing a wooden watch brand, I jumped at it.

You see, in the past year or two wooden watches have become a “thing”. Whether it’s a trendy thing, an “eco-friendly-let’s-save-the-world” thing, or a “let’s be more hip than the hipsters” thing I couldn’t tell you, but it’s definitely a “thing”. I tend to lean more towards the chunky, big faced stainless steel styles, but after discovering there are more than a few brands venturing into the wood market I’ve become curious.

JORD watches

To begin with, the folks at Jord get kudos for making the packaging so appealing. Being a fashion focused brand rather than an eco-friendly brand (according to their website), this should be expected, but in researching their competition I’ve found not everyone remembers that the packaging is part of the experience.

JORD packaging

In addition to the nicely detailed box you also get a monogrammed pillow for the watch to wrap around. It was a nice surprise and a first for me, as I can’t recall having seen that in other luxury watch brands. Another point in Jord’s favor.

The model we were sent, the Sully, is a mid-sized watch made from cherry & maple wood with a 41mm case/bezel, 3 hand Citizen Miyota movement, “scratch proof” glass and a single action locking clasp. It looks just as good in person as on the Jord website and is very comfortable on the wrist (no splinters!). The design of the bezel and links in the bracelet are reminiscent of many stainless steel watches on the market, so the look will be familiar to many, but having it done up in these classy wooden tones does add something different to the experience. Being made out of wood, the watch is also extremely light weight, and I found myself forgetting I had it on. That could be a good or a bad thing depending on your personal taste.

Jord

I was really impressed with how smooth and crisp the details of the watch are, as I had some doubts about how well such a product could be executed. Sizing the watch wasn’t difficult at all (I own a set of watch tools), but I was surprised that I only had to removed one link to fit the watch to my wrist. My wrist is somewhere between 7 to 7 1/2 inches in circumference and I usually have to remove 4-6 links to fit my wrist with other brands. This may leave customers with bigger wrists needing to order parts. The articulation of the band is pretty good, however there were a few links whose movement was a little stiff, but unless you’re a watch snob like me, this probably won’t matter to you.

This is a beautiful piece and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it, but I think Jord does need to be a little more focused on their quality control. Upon close examination, there was speck of paint or fragment of wood on the inside of the watch glass.

JORD case

It’s not very noticeable, but it might make some folks nervous about the inner workings of the watch. Was it assembled in a clean environment? Is there going to be a bunch of saw dust or wood chips gumming up the gears? These are questions that hard core watch buyers may ask.

Another mark against them was the fact that there were a couple of faint scratches on the clasp of the watch.

JORD clasp

I noticed these as soon as I removed the watch from the packaging and had to wonder how this happened even though the clasp was wrapped in a protective layer of plastic?

With an asking price of $139, the Sully is not the most expensive of Jord’s models or wood watches in general, but the level of craftsmanship displayed is stunning and should be a winner with both flower children and the fashion forward.

 

About the Author:

Esposo is B’s better half. In addition to being a musician, Esposo (which by the way means ‘husband’ in Spanish) is a writer, photographer and audio/visual engineer. He’s a comic book, sci-fi and watch fanatic and adores Baby Clumps. And his strikingly beautiful and talented wife. [editor’s note]

The Lipstick League: Weekly Links, Volume 113

Scrub in pot

Yay for another post from the The Lipstick League! We are a group of beauty bloggers, bound together by the desire to save the world with beauty, one post at a time!

For the month of December, we’re super-sizing The Lipstick League
and giving you double the fun from each member!

 

Beauty Junkies Unite – See what Amber thought were hits, and those that were misses in the new MAC RiRi Hearts MAC holiday collection!

Chalkboard Nails – There’s no better way to celebrate Pantone’s Color of the Year for 2014 than with some freehand radiant orchid nail art!

Chalkboard Nails – Get party perfect nails with five easy black and gold nail art ideas. Feeling bold? Try combining a few together!

Clumps of Mascara – Been itchin’ to try new nail polishes but the stores don’t seem to have anything up your alley? Support an indie nail polish brand!

Clumps of Mascara – So not beauty-related but c’mon…who doesn’t like pictures of Baby Clumps?

Gouldylox Reviews – Looking for the perfect holiday gift? Here’s a list that takes care of everyone!

Gouldylox Reviews – Beauty products commonly use these tricks to play on your self-esteem. Don’t let them trick you!

Lipglossiping – checks out the behind-the-scenes video featuring the much-awaited relaunch of Shu Uemura’s lipstick range.

My Beauty Bunny – We’ve got the scoop on Radical Skin Care This powerful (and effective!) anti-aging line is the buzz brand in Hollywood – find out why.

My Beauty Bunny – We’re ALWAYS raving about DermOrganic’s amazing hair care products. Want to try them yourself? Here’s your chance to win two full size products!

Nouveau Cheap – Are the new Almay Shadow Softies cream shadows? Mousse shadows? Answer: neither.

Nouveau Cheap – Wet n Wild is discontinuing some products in 2014. Come see if your favorites made the cut.

Pink Sith – shares with you a famous holiday poem. “Twas the poem about the holidays that barely rhymed, but I show you gifts from ULTA Beauty so I know you won’t mind.”

Pink Sith – has a great gift idea for the men in your life. The Billy Jealousy Shave3Some is Mr. Sith approved!

Prime Beauty – attends so many holiday parties (haha) she needs flawless skin for all the pictures she’ll be starring in (haha again). Renee Rouleau’s Triple Berry Smoothing Peel does the trick and it’s on sale!

Prime Beauty – explores the Indie Brand SENNA Cosmetics and likes what she finds!

Phyrra – I’ve launched my very own cruelty free, paraben free, vegan hair masque called Pretty Little Elixir! It’s a must have for dyed or heat styled hair!

Phyrra – Love Chocolate? See if this sweet treat from Too Faced is for you! It’s the Too Faced Chocolate Bar Eye Palette.

we heart this – took a field trip to 100% Pure in West Hollywood, a long time favorite of many of our team members. It was a sniff and scrub-a-polloza!

we heart thisbareMinerals Degrees of Dazzling is all kinds of beautiful. Check out the looks we posted and see if you agree…

 

Question of the Week:

What are some beauty products that you’d be delighted to
receive as gifts this holiday season?

B says, “I want Formula X polishes by Sephora. I seriously want them all!”

What are you lusting after this holiday season?

See you next week!

Makeup Wars: 5 Indie Nail Polish Brands That You MUST Try

Indie polishes

My Makeup Wars sisters and I are back and we’re showcasing some of our favorite indie brands. By indie, we mean brands that you probably won’t find in Sephora or UTLA. These brands are typically smaller businesses and they don’t always have a Marketing Department or Sales Department. They are run by real men and women and sometimes out of their own homes. They do it all!

I don’t own much indie makeup but I certainly have my fair share of indie nail polishes. Indie nail polishes have taken the nail polish blogosphere by storm. These brands are giving us nail polish lovers unique shades and finishes and I am so here for it. The bigger brands are obviously keeping their eyes peeled because I’ve seen them come out with shades AFTER an indie brand has released it. That said, check out some of my favorite indie brands!

Cult Nails 

Well, obviously Cult Nails would be first. Maria is a good and supportive friend of mine but even if she weren’t, I would still love this brand. Her polishes are AMAZING! She puts serious thought behind each shade and prides herself on stepping outside of the box. I’ve watched Cult Nails grow overnight and I am just so honored to know the woman behind this awesome brand.

My favorite Cult Nails polishes: Flushed, Deal With It, Lamestain and Charlatan

Literary Lacquers 

Gotta love a brand that combines 2 of my loves…books and nail polish! Amy reached out to me to see if I wanted to feature her brand on Clumps of Mascara and how could I say “No”? For one thing, I love when nail polish brands seek diversity. And the fantastic polishes are just the icing on the cake.

My Favorite LL nail polishes: More Like Fire Than Light, Green Gables, As The Waltz Was Ending

Cirque 

I can’t remember which nail polish blogger prompted me to stumble on Cirque’s nail polishes, but man, I am hooked. I love everything about this brand. The name, their adorable bottles and the shades. Ooooh, the shades! I like how Cirque is always releasing something unexpected. While many brands follow trends, Cirque does not and I love that about them. This one is nail polish brand that always keeps me on my toes.

My favorite Cirque nail polishes: Tibetan Nights, XX, Dark Horse, Cornotion (wish I owned it but it’s $48!)

 

A. England 

I fell in love with A.England at first glance. I don’t know much about the owner or her story behind the brand but I know that she has perfected holographic nail polishes. And this is no easy task. Holographic nail polishes are my absolute favorite and it’s so hard to find good ones. A.England has a slew of gorgeous polishes but they rock at creating holographics. I mean, amazingly so!

My favorite A.England nail polishes: Lady of the Lake, Tristam and St. George

 

Nailventurous 

I believe Floam was my very first indie nail polish. It holds a special place in my heart because um, well…it looks like the legendary Floam! I’m not sure if Nailventurous launches new polishes anymore but when the lady behind the brand was regularly launching polishes…WOW! I loved the uniqueness of these polishes. Also, while other brands have colors similar to Floam, I believe it was Nailventurous who did it first.

My favorite Nailventurous nail polishes: Floam, Sunny Floam, Bumblebee