Summer Beach Waves

Perhaps inspired by the weather forecast for the next few days, and the fact that I was able to wear shorts today, I have a summer hair look for you tonight. 🙂

Yesterday I picked up the Revlon ceramic triple barrel waver at Target.  I have heard good things from the beauty community on this one, and I have to say that I’m also impressed!  It is on sale at Target right now for $16.99.  Typically the waver costs between $20-24 depending on retailer.

Revlon Triple Barrel Waver

I love how my hair looks with a little bit of a wave in it.  This would look great on long or short hair!  The waver is surprisingly easy to use.  First, make sure your hair is completely dry.  Spritz on a heat protectant, and section your hair.  I usually separate the top and bottom layers, and then split each area into 4 sections.  You will want to work with 2 inch sections to achieve a look similar to mine.

My Summer Beach Waves!

To style  it, I clipped a small section up and out of my face.  You could do the same, leave it all down, put it half up– it’d all look good!
Hope you like it!

XO E

Pop of Color

This is a simple and quick way to add a little pop of color to your look– perfect if you don’t feel like rocking bright colors all over your lid.  First, line your top lid with a black cream or liquid liner; feel free to add a bit of a wing on the outer edge.  Next, using the point or flat end of an eye shadow brush (I like MAC’s 219 pencil brush for this, it’s very precise) dip in the bright color of your choice and place the shadow in a sweeping line just above the black liner.

Here I used MAC Chrome Yellow.

MAC Chrome Yellow shadow, Fluidline in Blacktrack, Plushlash mascara

For added interest, choose a complimentary bright shade to place just under your lower lash line.  I went with MAC Lucky Green.

And that’s it!  Simple and fresh, an on trend look for spring.  Which colors would you like to try?

XO E

A Review: EOS Smooth Sphere

If you are like me, your lips might be in need of a little TLC at the moment.  It has been a dry winter here in New York!  Of course, smooth lips are a must for anyone who wears lipstick or gloss– otherwise unattractive flakes show through.  I’ve used Burt’s Bees Honey lip balm for the past year, and while it’s a nice product, I was ready to try something new.  I was a bit bored of the honey flavor.

My new favorite?  EOS lip balm, which stands for Evolution of Smooth.  I got the organic lip balm smooth sphere in the flavor summer fruit (which tastes like summer in a stick, bonus).  It is 95% organic, 100% natural, paraben-free, petrolatum-free, and has shea butter and vitamin E.  It’s SO smooth, yummy, and moisturizing.  And, the packaging is super cute– it comes in a little egg shaped dome that twists open.  You apply it just like you would any other lip balm, and it is big enough to get both lips at once due to the size of the dome of product.

The application is clear, which is what I prefer.  Also available is a new version in a lemon drop flavor with SPF 15 (online only), as well as the original formula in sweet mint and honeysuckle honeydew.  EOS also offers a stick option if you are not keen on the egg shape (maybe if you’re a man and don’t carry a purse?) 🙂  EOS is available at Rite Aid, Walgreens, Target, etc.  I got mine at Rite Aid for $3.29.  A great deal for a high quality organic product!  Definitely check this one out.

Spring Smokey Eye

Hey everyone, heading out for dinner soon, so I wanted to share the look I created for tonight.  I wanted to do a smokey eye with pink and purple blended on the lid, and a darker purple-grey in the crease and outer corner.  I like how this turned out, hope that you do too!

Here’s what I used for this look:

Face

  • NARS Sheer Glow foundation in Siberia
  • MAC Mineralized Skin Finish Natural in Light- just dusted over T-Zone
  • Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer Kit (under eyes) in Ivory

Cheeks

  • NARS Orgasm blush
  • MAC Daft Pink mineralized blush (used as highlight)

Eyes

  • UDPP (Urban Decay Primer Potion) to prime the eyes
  • Curl lashes with Shu Uemura eyelash curler
  • MAC Naked Lunch as brow bone highlight and in inner corner
  • Revlon Matte in Pink Innocence on lid, then layer MAC Swish over it
  • MAC Bough Grey in crease, blended out
  • MAC Smoke & Diamonds on outer half of crease, focusing on outer V
  • MAC Sketch on outer V to darken a bit more
  • MAC Stars ‘N Rockets on lid, blending up a bit into the crease
  • touch of MAC Unbasic White in inner corner and swept up and outwards (about to the halfway point on the eye)
  • Line eyes with MAC Kohl Power in Feline
  • Apply mascara- I used MAC Plush Lash in Plushblack

Make sure your brows are defined too…I used a bit of Anastasia’s baked brow powder in a dark blonde shade and their clear brow gel to groom the shape.

To balance out the darker eye, I went with a nude lip- I used MAC Creme d’Nude layered on top of some EOS lip balm (my new fave!  $3.29 at drugstores).

Sounds like a lot of eye products, but it’s fun for me to play with lots of colors when I have my palettes out.  You could definitely use less and achieve a similar look!

Here are some pictures! Note that my camera washes the colors out a little– it’s more vibrant and quite darker in real life.

Have a great night!

XO E

My Skincare Routine

As a bit a of product junkie, I’m always curious what people use in their daily routines.  Skincare is a fun one- so I thought that I’d share what I use.  I change it up a couple of times per year, but less when I find a system that I really love!  I’ve been using the method/products below for about six months (longer on the facewash- I am on my third large bottle of that!) so this is tried and true for me.  Especially when skincare is concerned, I firmly believe that you need to give the products at least a few weeks chance to see how they work with your skin.  Unless you are allergic to a product– in which case please get rid of it :)– you aren’t going to see all of the potential positive or negative effects immediately.  Or even after you’ve used it a handful of times.  This is why I like to do reviews of this type after at least 3-4 weeks.  Count on me for that!

Everyone’s skin is different, so while this works superbly for me, it might not be your cup of tea– you probably have your own holy grail products that you love.  PS- share them below in the comments– I would love to hear! 🙂  But maybe you’ll be enticed to try something out that I use, and love it too.  For reference, I have sensitive, porcelain skin that is easily prone to irritation and clogged pores.  This routine keeps my skin clear and glowing.

Morning:

*Face Wash: Philosophy Purity. It’s a gentle cleanser, with a light pleasant smell.  You can lather it like a traditional face wash, or put it right on a damp face and massage it into your skin sans lather.  Both ways work great– it seems like more of a personal preference from what I can tell.  I’ve gone through 3 massive bottles of this stuff, so you can tell that I like it a lot.  What I love most is that it leaves my skin supple, and doesn’t strip away the moisture barrier.  The ingredients are natural, there are no harsh chemicals.  Also, it removes makeup REALLY well!  Bonus. You can find it at Ulta, Sephora, or on QVC.com (they stock the elusive 32 oz. bottle with a pump, aka face wash heaven).

*Exfoliation: Tuesday & Thursday AM- MAC Volcanic Ash Exfoliator. This is a sugar based exfoliating scrub that is BLACK and full of volcanic ash. It’s a lot of fun and smells really good.  As you gently massage this onto a damp face (I use this in the shower- less mess!) the sugar crystals dissolve after they have served their purpose.  This was a limited edition product that I picked up this fall, but it lasts a long time.  And I got two. 🙂 Still on tube #1!  They currently float around ebay, but you will likely get ripped off so I don’t really recommend that.

*Next step: I moisturize with Bare Minerals bareVitamins skin rev-er upper. This lotion is also all natural (theme, see…) and contains vitamins, glycolic and salicylic acids, and has a nice thin consistency that does not feel greasy at all.  I’ve used this for at least three years and swear by it.  It melts into your skin, and provides a great base for your makeup, too.  And the low dose of acids helps to gently keep those pores clean.  Find this at Sephora, Ulta, Bare Escentuals boutiques, QVC.com.

*SPF: Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sublock SPF 55. I don’t put this on my face every single day (I’m indoors quite a bit) but this is my favorite sunblock for the face.  In summer I will also use this in lieu of the bareVitamins on really warm days when my skin is naturally oilier, as well.  I like this on my neck and ears too.  Love this SPF.  I got mine at Target, it is available nearly everywhere.

Night:

*MAC makeup wipes to remove face makeup and light eye makeup such as shadow.  The Neutrogena makeup wipes are also good– the ones that come in the light blue pouch.   MAC wipes smell really good too.

*MAC PRO Eye Makeup Remover to remove liner and mascara. I formerly used Lancôme Bi-Facil, but it’s a bit pricier than the MAC and works about the same.

*Wash face with Purity using the Clarisonic Mia. The Clarisonic is AMAZING!  If you are not familiar, it is a hand-held little device with an oscillating circular brush head that gently exfoliates.  It is a wonderful investment.  The Mia is the baby of the Clarisonic family, meaning it’s easier to hold, perfect for travel, and a lot cheaper at $150 instead of $195-225 depending on model of the larger ones.  PS, the brush head is the same on all models- same size, everything.  So you are only paying for a larger handle and holding dock if you go up a size.  Go up to the Pro model for two speeds etc., but honestly I didn’t see the point in that.  Anyway, I’ve found the Clarisonic gentle enough to use every night.  Your skin feels incredibly smooth after you use it– like a child’s skin.  It’s kind of like a toothbrush for your face.  I just put about a quarter sized dollop of Purity on the wet brush head, and push the button on the handle which powers the brush for one minute.  Typically I spend about 1.5 minutes with the Clarisonic, 1 cycle is too short but 2 is a little long for me. I move the brush around my face in a circular motion, clockwise, then counter clockwise as it spins away.  It’s glorious.  This is available many places online (you can find good package deals that include extra brush heads, cleanser, etc.) and at Sephora (of course).

*3-4x per week, I then cleanse again with Murad Time Release Acne Cleanser,after the Clarisonic has cleared out my pores. This helps keep my skin clear, and has anti-aging properties.  After you use the Clarisonic, your pores will better absorb whatever product you put on immediately thereafter.  This Murad cleanser supposedly releases the active ingredients over time to help keep your skin clear.  I like that it’s targeted towards adults too– and not teens, as so many of those products are so harsh and drying.  The texture of this is a little strange, and it isn’t intended to really foam, (you kind of rub it into your face, it’s a little chunky and then turns milkier) but it works!  And that is all that matters to me.  From Sephora’s website, the active ingredients:

-Free and Encapsulated Salicylic Acid: Encourage cell turnover by gently exfoliating the upper layer of the skin; micro-delivery technology penetrates deeper and encapsulation ensures release of acne medication for hours, even after rinsing.
-Willow Bark Extract, Tea Tree Leaf Oil, and Black Cohosh: Provide antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, and enhance cell renewal.
-Silver Citrate, and Citric Acid: Eliminate microbes and bacteria that invade the skin’s environment and protects skin’s surface.

*Face Mask- 1 x per week- Mondays for me! Bliss Steep Clean Mask. From the beloved Bliss Spa in NYC…This product was formerly called the Bliss 15 minute facial– and for good reason!!  It is a great weekly detox for your skin.  My pores have really improved because of this.  I usually do this right before bed, but sometimes instead I use it before my morning shower. For more details, click here!

*Under Eye Cream- Bobbi Brown EXTRA Eye Repair Cream. This stuff is really amazing– I’ve been using a generous sample I got at my counter which is lasting forever.  A little goes a long way with eye creams!  This helps with dark circles, puffiness, and fine lines.  I put this under my eyes and around the outer edge before bed, and when I wake up I can still feel the moisture when I touch my skin.  It’s a great eye cream, I would purchase the full size for sure.  I’m intrigued to try other eye creams too– this topic is something relatively new to me still!

*For any spots- I use Murad Acne Spot Treatment. Just a little bit goes far here too– I like this because it isn’t super harsh and has a nice clarifying effect when you need some extra help with a blemish or area of clogged pores.  It contains sulfur and salicylic acid.

Sooo, that is that!!  Below are the items I talked about ♥

Hope this helped you out!  Or at least, entertained you. 🙂

XO E

LIBERTY of London by Target and MAC

LIBERTY’s of London, a department store known for their exquisite floral printed cottons, has collaborated with Target and MAC Cosmetics on two collections for spring.  I picked up a couple of eye shadows and a lipglass from MAC, and a two small storage bins and a teapot from Target.

The MAC collection is already nearly sold out many places, but I’d recommend trying Nordstrom or Macy’s (online or in person) to try and get around that.  I got a lipglass in English Accents and eye shadows in Bough Grey and Birds & Berries.  The lipglass reminds me of Gaga lipstick, in lipglass form.  It’s a bit darker and has more purple in it, but it’d be gorgeous on top of that.  Bough Grey is my favorite MAC shadow of the two– this is a really pretty light stormy grey that I can’t think of a dupe for.  It’s gorgeous in the crease, to smoke out any look.  I have also enjoyed pairing it with a pale pink on the lid.  Birds & Berries is a dark, shimmery teal blue veluxe pearl that also pairs nicely with Bough Grey (a satin finish).  I passed on the lipsticks in this collection as I knew they wouldn’t be ones I’d typically grab for, even though they are beautiful for a photo shoot.  This is some of the best packaging MAC has put out in a while, in my opinion.

Birds & Berries, English Accents, and Bough Grey

Bough Grey, Birds & Berries, English Accents

Target’s line has everything- quite literally.  From bicycles to gardening gloves, scarves to china, and dresses to stationary to name a handful of the items.  There were at least 5 or 6 different prints that many of the items were offered in.  (Probably more when considering the clothing options!)  I picked up a teapot for $12.99 that I originally thought was an online exclusive, but my Target had one lonely one left on the shelf, lucky me! Unfortunately, all of the $5 teacups have been sold out at two separate Targets the past few times I have looked for those.  But that is okay, I previously did not own a teapot (somehow) and I am excited at the prospect of making a pot of tea instead of a single serving cup. 🙂  It is china, and in a beautiful multicolored floral print.

My LIBERTY roundup!

I picked up two small storage bins in the same print.  Target calls these media storage, I think.  They are about as wide as a CD.  I put small electronics in one, and little random jewelery boxes in another.  They add a nice pop of floral to my office bookshelf!

Enjoy!  Check out these collaborations at your local Target and MAC!

XO E

Essie- The Art of Spring Collection

I had to share some of my favorite new nail polishes– the Essie Art of Spring Collection is amazingly gorgeous!  I first got Tart Deco with a pedicure, and fell in love.  Right now Ulta has a buy 2 get 1 free sale on Essie, and when combined with their coupons (check out the $5 off one in InStyle), you can get a pretty sweet deal on these polishes!  That is what I did. 🙂  Normally these are around $8 each.  But with the deal above you can get 3 for $11+ tax.  Nice!

As you might be able to tell, I am loving coral for spring in general– in blush, lipstick, etc. so Tart Deco is still a favorite of the six.  It applies nearly orange, more tangerine than melon.  Van D’Go is similar in the bottle, just a bit lighter and more salmon based.  After 2 coats are applied on the nails and it has a chance to oxidize, it looks closer to how Tart Deco does in the bottle, just a bit more towards a cantaloupe shade.  Today I tried out Neo Whimsical, which is a very unique hue.  It’s between a lilac and a pink, and is subtle yet probably unlike colors you might already own.

The collection includes (from left): Neo Whimsical, Lilacism, Pop Art Pink, Red Nouveau, Tart Deco, and Van D’Go.  How fun are these names?!

If you have to pick one or two, I’d recommend Van D’Go and Tart Deco.  These colors are so fun for spring and summer!

Here is a picture I just took of Neo Whimsical on my nails:

Neo Whimsical

Notice how it’s less grey than it appears in the promo photo!

Enjoy!

XO E