OCC Lip Tars a mixin’

My my my…what more needs to be said about these kids? Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics has wooed me in the nail polish and loose eye shadow department, but I would be a tad bit remiss if I didn’t declare my love for the Lip Tars. I’ll do a formal swatches soon but to tease you a bit, I did some mixing and made my own shade.

A little bit of this and a little bit of that…

And look what I made.

[Read more…]

Amor de Lacquer: Zoya Wicked collection

Welcome to another post of Amor de Lacquer….the series all about nail polish and nail care! Send me your requests, suggestions and ideas to Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.
Well my darlings, Zoya does it again. I feel like I say that about EVERY collection that they come out with.  Don’t blame me though. When it comes to nail polish, Zoya is superior. Their Wicked collection is no different.

Watch this…


Let’s rap about one of my favorites first…the green. Phenomenal! I don’t own a green like this and I absolutely love the richness of the green coupled with the silver glitter. 

This kiddo is described as a byzantium purple sparkling metallic and I find it to be the best description. I find myself wearing this color for more than a week. That’s darn near a record in my nail polishing world. 

Kym is cool. I find it works great as a layering polish as it looks good sheer and with an opaque finish. 

Cheryl absolutely rocks and it’s a plum shame that I don’t have more pictures of it in action. With my growing love for brown polishes, the fact that this one is rich and full of shimmer, well…I’m just in love.

Carrie Ann

Score! I really want to say that I have a red like this but I don’t think that I do. Just gorgeous!

Karina….what can I say about you, darling? It looks like your siblings have really overshadowed you. While I like Karina, she just seems to be a bit subdued compared to the others in the collection. Not that she isn’t beautiful in her own right. It just seems like we’ve seen this before. 
Of course the polishes applied beautifully and I didn’t have any application problems. I think Edyta, Julieanne  and Cheryl are the absolute must haves if you don’t want to splurge on the entire collection.

Which ones are your favs?

Buy these and more for $7/bottle at Zoya.com.
Your fellow nail polish junkie,

This review contains a sample product sent for post consideration. Read our disclosure policy here.

Acne Sucks: Alba Botanica Natural ACNEdote Deep Pore Wash

Welp…it looks like I’m having another one. And it’s bad. I’m assuming it’s just my skin wanting to attack me for whatever reason. I’ve been drinking my daily 64 oz of water and taking my daily vitamins. Then again, my dermatologist has prescribed me a new cream and perhaps my skin is having a reaction to that.

So I stopped using it and switched over to Alba Botanica’s Natural ACNEdote Deep Pore Wash.

An all natural acne cleanser? So up my alley!
It’s not every day that you’ll run into an acne cleanser that DOES NOT contain harsh ingredients. Which is kinda loco because if your face is already breaking out like mad, the last thing you need are unnecessary and super harsh ingredients. Especially if your skin is sensitive.

But leave it to Alba Botanica to change the game. Please oh please, darlings…tell me you’re familiar with this brand. If you’re like me, you may have passed them by in Whole Foods or your favorite health food store. But girlfriend, the next time you are mindlessly shopping, check them out!

My skin has been absolutely loving the wash. Check out what it does NOT have.

The fact that it doesn’t have any artificial fragrances has me dancin’ in the streets. Since it contains willow bark extract, (which is a natural source of Salicylic Acid) it has a natural and earthy smell that I find pleasant and not too overwhelming.

It also contains lemon balm and parsley extracts. Those kiddos act as natural oil blotters…which, I love! So yep…to my sista girls with oily skin, this wash may be up your alley as it cleanses your skin thoroughly but doesn’t over-strip it. It’s like the perfect balance. Yin and yang, homies.

I’m also digging the consistency of the wash. It reminds me of castile soap in that it feels water-based. But it doesn’t have the richest lather. Which definitely isn’t a flaw in my book.

Has this dramatically changed my skin and cleared up my acne over night? Nope. But then again, what does? When you suffer from acne, you know you have to be patient. Has it kept the oily pores at bay while thoroughly cleansing my skin to prevent more pimples? Yeppers! And for that I will forever love and shout to the rooftops about the awesomemess of this cleanser.

And it’s only $9.95 for a 6 oz bottle. Not bad at ‘tal. The ACNEdote line also has a scrub, moisturizer, gel and astringent. I am so on it.

Any Alba Botanica fans? The lip balms look dreamy. I think I’ll scoop one up the next time I’m in Whole Foods attempting to say no to the vegan chocolate chip cookies.

Which, by the way, I always fail at. Womp!

Peace, love and healthy skin!

This review contains a sample product sent for post consideration. Read our disclosure policy here.

Natural Beauty: Making Black Cocoa Shampoo

[Editor’s note: This is a re-post from my natural hair blog Loc Rocker. The information was just too grand to limit to just one blog. Very rarely do my blogs cross paths but in this instance…it was inevitable. For all things natural hair, Loc Rocker (and the fabulous blogs on the site’s blog roll) is the place to go.]

While I like to travel nationwide for beauty industry events, lately I’ve been wanting to be more active in the Greater Orlando community. It was at one of my Urban League Young Professionals meetings where I met Karen, the founder of Peace and Beauty Project. Karen’s passion for helping young girls and natural beauty fell in line with so many of the things that I am trying to do. I feel so blessed to have crossed paths with her.

Two weekends ago I asked Karen if I could help with her Natural Beauty Lab event. I helped with the preparation and took photos. O.M.G….the event was a HUGE hit.

The event was hosted in the dining hall of a beautiful bed and breakfast in downtown Orlando.


The first thing we blended was a Black Cocoa Butter shampoo.

And yep, it smells and feels as good as it looks. We started off with unscented castile soap.

We then funneled a bit of black cocoa butter.

We dumped in some aloe vera…

And at this point, we were able to scent it however we liked. Cocoa Absolute was a huge hit among most of the ladies.

….I ventured more to the mint essential oil, instead.  I just LOVE how mint feels on my scalp.

And bam! A homemade organic black cocoa butter shampoo…

I haven’t washed my hair yet (ironically I washed it the day before, womp!) but the next time that I do, I will be using this. Can’t. wait. In the meantime, I’ve been using it as a hand soap and has been leaving my hands incredibly smooth…a rarity when you use castile soap solo.

We made other products but I don’t think I took enough pictures of everything. I volunteered to be photographer but somewhere between laughing it up with everyone, live tweeting and mixing, I forgot.

Check out the darling baby beauty in the house. She is the daughter of a fellow blogger, Scottie…over at The Basics. Also in the house was Ortancis from The Orlando’s Natural Hair meetup group and Fara from Pure Essence Body Care. I’ve raved about Pure Essence before when I discovered them at Whole Foods’ farmers market. And Fara’s locs…O.M.G. I’ll be featuring her soon. On Loc Rocker, of course.

If you are in or around the greater Orlando area, shoot an email to Brittany@LocRocker.com.  The Peace and Beauty Project will be having more events. And did I tell you about Orlando’s 1st Beauty and Natural Hair show? That’s a post for another day but I am beyond excited.

Peace, y’all. And beauty.

Amor de Lacquer: Diamond Cosmetics’ Fall Collection

Welcome to another post of Amor de Lacquer….the series all about nail polish and nail care! Send me your requests, suggestions and ideas to Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

Anxious to see what our favorite affordable and big 3 nail polish brand has for Fall?

Classic Pink

This is my absolute favorite of the bunch. This most mimics my beloved N.Y.C. Cosmetics’ Love Letters and Orly’s Confetti. It was opaque at three coats and dried under 5 minutes. Loves it!

Sunset in Sedona

Is this terracotta? I’m not sure but I LOVE this burnt orange. It is indeed a fabulous Fall color. It almost reminds me of sweet potato pie. But that’s just the Southern girl in me. I could eat sweet potato pie every day until I die. No lie. Hahaaa!

Private School Girl

I went to a private school, charter school and public school. Random B fact for ya. And I wasn’t even allowed to where red polish until I was practically in high school. This is a true red. Nothing you haven’t seen before.

It’s Nothing To Wine About

Totally love the name of this polish. It’s a burgundy that requires at least 3 coats to get complete coverage. I found it to be a bit streaky but it reignited my love for burgundy polishes. It’s been awhile since I’ve sported one! 

Under The Willow Tree

O.M.G….what a stunning green! Perfect for fall! From far away it almost looks black. But when the light hits it…

…it’s a smoky gray green. Gorgeous!

Go Diamond Cosmetics! I like this collection. The more I review their nail polishes, the more I like them. The collections are stellar and the formula is great. You know what’s missing though? Awesome packaging! I’d love to see Diamond Cosmetics nail polish bottles in the shape of diamond…or somethin’ like that. Who knows what the future holds. :) Click the photo at the bottom to start a shoppin’!

Diggin’ any of these colors?

Your fellow nail polish junkie,

This review contains a sample product sent for post consideration. Read our disclosure policy here.

Green Beauty: Lavanila healthy fragrance and body butter

I’ve had my eyes on Lavanila products for quite some time and I am so glad to finally be able to share them with y’all. But first, the etymological nerd that is me hasto tell you about the name LAVANILA. It comes from the country of Madagascar. Their native word for vanilla is lavanila. Apparently the best vanilla comes from the island of Madagascar. Pretty cool, uh?

The brand was started by Danielle Raynor and Laura DiGirolamo, both beauty lovers who were frustrated with the perfumes that aggravated their allergies.

And so together (with the help of chemists, of course) they birthed a healthy fragrance.

Call me crazy, but I wasn’t aware of all of the synthetic ingredients that were put into fragrances. It’s amazing how divine a fragrance can smell using Mother Earth’s treats.

The Healthy fragrances are come in 4 different scents and they are all formulated without

– Sulfates
– Synthetic Fragrances
– Synthetic Dyes
– Petro-Chemicals
– Phthalates
– Triclosan

Lavanilla Lavender has notes of vanilla, lavender, rose absolute and violet leaf. Mama Clumps would fall for this as she loves anything with lavender in it. A 1 oz bottle of eau de parfum spray will run you $38 and the 1.7 oz bottle goes for $58.  While the vanilla scent does seem to be a little overpowering, I will say that Lavanilla has turned me into a perfume snob. I don’t think I’ll be looking at mainstream fragrances the same.

And then there are their body butters.

Oh la laaaa….

I don’t usually pull out body butters until the weather gets cooler, but I’ve been making an exception for this kid.

These are perfect after a warm shower or bath as they melt right into your skin.

They are divine, I tell ya. Non-greasy and the scents last. And just like their big sister, they are formulated without all of the nasty stuffs.

The body butters also come in the same 4 scents as the fragrances. Retailing at $12 for a 2.75 bottle and $25 for a 8 oz bottle, I don’t think it’s a bad steal for my ladies who prefer to use products free of synthetic ingredients. And you have to be a lover of vanilla because all of fragrances and body butters have strong notes of it. I have never been the biggest fan of smelling like a cookie but it is starting grow on me.

Lavanila will see me again as I totally plan to try their healthy deodorant and healthy sunscreen. Loves it!

Have you tried any of their products? Whatcha think?

This review contains a sample product sent for post consideration. Read our disclosure policy here.

Amor de Lacquer: China Glaze Ingrid

Welcome to another post of Amor de Lacquer….the series all about nail polish and nail care! Send me your requests, suggestions and ideas to Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

It’s been forever and a day since I’ve featured a just ONE nail polish in the Amor de Lacquer series. But Ingrid is one of those colors that I feel needs a post on her own. Truth is, I knew I wasn’t going to be the biggest fan of this polish but I purchased it. Because for whatever reasons, I kinda dig weird colors on my nails. And if this ain’t weird, I don’t know what is.

Ingrid comes from China Glaze’s Vintage Vixen Fall 2010 collection. It was the one color that stood out to me. It’s like an ashy brown with gold flecks. At least that’s what I see. China Glaze’s description says that Ingrid is a light brown with copper, pink and green micro glitter.

It is such an interesting color and even if I don’t wear it often, I’m glad to add it to my collection. I’ve featured brown polishes before. Remember Nubar’s Chocolate Truffle collection? And then there was OPI’s higly coveted You Don’t Know Jacques. Which, I STILL don’t like. But there’s something to say about Ingrid.

I think it works with my skintone. And it applied flawlessly! More shots of Ingrid around town…

How is this for a design fail?

Uhh, I’ll stick to perfecting konad and simple strips and dots. I purchased this gal from transdesign.com for $2.99. So what do you think? Would you rock Ingrid? Have you snagged any of the other polishes from the Vintage Vixen collection?

Oh! And I picked up Sephora by O.P.I’s Studs & Stilettos, another brown polish. I guess I’m goin’ through a phase, y’all.

Your fellow nail polish junkie,

Beauty Review: SinuCleanse neti pot and giveaway!

Very rarely do I have to do disclaimers on my posts but for those of y’all that are squeamish about liquid going up and out of the nose, you may not want to read any further. I have pictures showing it alllll.

Yep, I love you too. :)

For those of y’all that have hung around, allow me to share with you the power that is the neti pot.

Looks like Aladdin’s genie lamp 2010, uh? While an actual genie won’t pop out and grant you three wishes, the neti pot does provide an insane amount of nasal and sinus relief.

I know what you’re thinking…WHAT in the world does this have to do with beauty? I’ll tell you what’s not beautiful, sinus migraines and under eye discoloration; two things that regularly using a neti pot can alleviate. Follow me as we take a journey up my nose. Literally.
So how does a neti pot work?
For starters, nasal irrigation or the flushing out of mucus and debris from the nasal cavity and sinuses is not a new concept. Its origin began in India and South East Asia and has been around for centuries. (source) The concept is simple. Using warm water and saline solution in your neti pot, you simply tilt your head and allow the solution to go up one nostril and out of the other.

Looks weird, uh? Wellll OBviously, it’s not done at the dinner table on a date but as needed in the comfort of a bathroom.

Saline solution comes with your neti pot and they can also be purchased separately.

But don’t be cheap like me and try to use half a packet of a saline solution. It burns like the dickens! I was screaming for Mommy and Daddy when I accidentally did that. No bueno.

Neti pot instructions….

OMG, what if I choke?
You won’t. Unless, of course you panic. But then again, the same could be said for drinking a glass of water. The key to using the neti pot is to relax. Don’t rush, don’t hold your breath and don’t swallow 4 times in one second. I find that making the K-sound (as in kite) really helps me from accidentally swallowing the water.

Uh, what comes out of your nose?
Boogers. LOL, I’m kidding. Once the saline solution travels from one nostril, through your sinuses and out of the other nostril, you won’t see much of anything except perhaps mucus and saline solution. I’ve seen lint (maybe from a towel or pillowcase) before.

Wait, what’s the point of this again? Who can benefit from using a neti pot?
Anyone! We brush our teeth, clean our ears and bathe on a regular, why not clean out the nasal passage every now and then? It has also been said that using a neti pot can help diminish under eye circles and can alleviate stuffy noses. I’ve used my neti pot with stuffy noses but it doesn’t seem to work. If one nostril is all stuffed up, the water has no where to go. Opps! And while I don’t have allergies, I can only imagine how golden a neti pot would be for allergy sufferers. As a chronic sinus headache suffer, the neti pot has changed my life. I always look at holistic, herbal and homeopathic remedies before OTC and prescribed medication so the neti pot is right up my alley.

And you shouldn’t use it every day. Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. I use mine at least 3 times a week.

I want one!
You can get the SinuCleanse neti pot at most drugstores and natural food stores. They are super easy to find and will run you about $11.99 USD. Aaaand, you can try and win one from me. I love my neti pot so much that I decided to give TWO readers a chance to snag one of their own.

Here’s what you have to do:


Leave a comment telling me why you would like a neti pot
 AND your email address in THIS POST ONLY. You must be following
Clumps on either Facebook or Twitter to be eligible.
Zee Rules:
-For U.S. readers only
-Contest ends  Monday, August 30, 2010 at 12:00 pm EST
-Have you won a giveaway within the past 6 months? Give someone else a chance, homie.
-Winner will be selected at random
-Family members/personal friends of B are not eligible
-In the event that a winner does not respond in 3 days, another person will be selected

 If you have any questions, email me at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com. Good luck!


This review contains a sample product sent for post consideration. Read our disclosure policy her