Tag Archives: Philosophy

Emma’s March Favorites!

Hi Everyone!  I’m beginning a ‘monthly favorites’ series.  At the end of the current month (or first week of the ‘new’ month) I will dedicate a post to my most beloved products of the month.  These will be items that I used a bunch, new things that I fell in love with, and forgotten favorites.  I’ll talk mostly about beauty products, and add in clothing/whatever else grabbed my attention. 🙂  So without further ado…My March Favorites!

My March Beauty Faves

First I’ll touch on the face products.  This is a bit unexpected, but I have two NEW foundation routines.  Previously, I exclusively used Bare Minerals Matte– which I still like– but I’d go through those little sifter containers quite quickly!  Before the Matte came out, I used the original BE formula for a few years.  I decided to look into additional products because I wanted to try something with less of a pink undertone.  For light natural coverage, I have been using the MAC Mineralized Skin Finish Natural in Light, applied with the MAC 182 Kabuki brush.  The finish of MSF Natural is incredible– your skin is left very smooth and virtually flawless.  It’s a lot more natural looking than BE, in my opinion.  Coverage holds up for a full day, and does so without looking like it’s concealing anything.  The 182 brush is a good investment– it’s the best Kabuki I’ve ever used.  It’s made of super soft goat hair and buffs like no other.  These two are a winning combo.

MAC 182, MAC MSF Natural in Light, NARS Sheer Glow in Siberia

My other love, NARS Sheer Glow, deserves its own review.  Look out for that one soon!  It’s a wonderful liquid foundation, it offers light to medium coverage depending on application.  My shade is Siberia.  I used to be anti-liquid, but this one has ended my prejudice.  LOVE it!

EOS lip balm in Summer Fruit and Philosophy Amazing Grace firming body emulsion are two body hydration treats of the month. I received Amazing Grace as a beauty insider sample size gift from Sephora, and I definitely will buy the full size when this runs out.  Mine is 2 oz., the perfect size to throw in your bag.  It has a gorgeous delicate floral aroma and moisturizes really well.  To be honest, I have yet to meet a Philosophy product that I dislike.

Philosophy Amazing Grace, EOS Lip Balm

For blush, I am obsessed with the MAC Blush Ombre in Ripe Peach.  I’m sure lots of you already have this, and it has been quite hyped, but this product is probably my number one favorite of the month.  It’s so beautiful, and just goes perfectly with my coloring.  I think that peach is very universal, and flatters pretty much every skin tone.   The compact is equally stunning, with a gradation of color in the pan from light apricot to a reddened peach.  There is a bit of shimmer, but not much– and the powder is very finely milled.  These are sold out most places, but if you are able to get your hands on one, please do so!

MAC Ripe Peach

In the same color family, another favorite is MAC lipstick in Fresh Salmon.  I’m really into coral and peach this season.  It’s so…fresh.  Not to steal the name of the lipstick.

MAC Fresh Salmon, MAC Ripe Peach, MAC Bough Grey e/s

MAC Fresh Salmon swatch

Also pictured is MAC Bough Grey eye shadow. I talked about this one a couple of weeks ago in my Liberty of London review.  To see a swatch and the original packaging, check out that post.  I ended up depotting the shadow in order to add it to my palette.

MAC Bough Grey

Also mentioned in a previous post, I am loving Essie polishes in Tart Deco and Van D’Go.  I discovered the Essie quick-e drying drops when I got a pedicure.  The bottle has a glass dropper, and you release 1-2 drops on top of each nail after the polish has been applied.  It works by binding with the varnish somehow and drying everything faster than anything I’ve tried before.  Unlike Seche Vite, this does not add a thick goop ridden layer to your manicure, a big plus. It feels kind of like a dry oil to the touch.  I picked mine up at Ulta.

Essie quick-e, Van D'Go, & Tart Deco

This next one is a bit out of season (maybe) but I love apple year round.  Fall is one of my favorite seasons, and this Bath & Body Works soap in Fresh Market Apple brings back happy memories of college. 🙂  Something about MA and apple picking perhaps? Regardless, I love it.  It lives in my bathroom.

BBW Fresh Market Apple

Doesn’t my backyard provide a fitting background?  Also, BBW had redone the formula on their anti-bac soaps, as well as the packaging.  A positive move on both accounts!

I wanted to include a couple of favorite clothing items as well.  I’m loving embellished tees.  This floral painted tee from J.Crew is so fun.  If you touch it, the texture is like someone took acrylic paint and went to town on a nice grey slub cotton canvas.  The fabric is bias cut and hangs nicely.  Next to the shirt is my new favorite braided leather belt from Anthropologie.  I’ve been looking for something like this for a while.  It’s constructed of brown leather complete with a circular buckle.  It was made in India.  I snagged it for nearly half off.

J.Crew painted tee, Anthropologie braided belt

And finally, we end with my favorite Lululemon tank of the month.  This is another one of my Scoop Neck Tanks in teal.  I keep going back to this color!

Lululemon Scoop Neck Tank

back of my teal Lulu tank

Hope you found a few things that you like!  Please share your favorites of last month in the comments below!



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.


*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.


*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. 🙂