Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Winter Wonderland and Packing Tips Pt. 1

Hi everyone and happy holidays! Sorry there hasn't been a post in awhile, I've been super busy at work and now I'm on vacation with my family. We are skiing in Whistler, Canada, and it's gorgeous here! The view from our living room overlooks the ski slopes; it's so snowy and beautiful.

So far, the skiing is great. There is tons of powder, which I love to ski, and the mountain is huge, so I don't think we will run out of trails!

I took this photo on the slopes yesterday.

I find that packing for a snowy vacation can be kind of difficult just because there are so many different types of outfits to pack. First, you obviously need ski clothes. This includes a lot of layering pieces so you can stay warm on the mountain. On top I typically wear Hot Chillys long johns, a t-shirt (dri-fit material), a quarter zip and a big ski coat. On the bottom I'll wear long johns, ski pants and thick ski socks.

Links below

I love the Under Armour semi-fitted short sleeve shirts because they are versatile and super comfy. I not only wear them for skiing, but I also lounge in them and use them as workout tops. I also like my down jacket versus a shell because I don't have to layer as much underneath.

If you're like my family and ski for a week at a time, remember to bring multiples of each item. I always have at least 2-3 of each clothing item.

Additionally, you will need a good pair of mittens or gloves (I prefer mittens with finger slots over gloves because they keep my hands warmer), a neck warmer/gaiter, a helmet and goggles.

I wear Swany women's SX-3 mittens. I've had these for a few years but I don't think they make this specific style anymore since I couldn't find them on the site. However, the ones pictured are pretty similar to mine. My helmet is a Pro-Tec Ace and my snow goggles are Smith Optics Sport Optics Phenom Snowsport Goggles - Spherical Lens. I'm not sure the brand of my neck warmer, but they're all pretty much the same. Also, when it comes to gaiters, a lot of people buy the ones with the connecting head cover, but I don't like those because then I can't clip my helmet underneath.

I'm pretty boring color-wise when it comes to ski clothes. A lot of people wear bright colors and patterns, but my clothing is mostly black, white or gray. I do have a few colorful pieces though; a bright pink dri-fit shirt, bright blue under armour spandex and a burgundy and a red North Face quarter zip.

More on other outfits in another post!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Holiday Nails: Maybelline Metal Icon & Essie Set in Stones

I recently discovered a new nail polish combo that I am now obsessing over!

Maybelline Color Show in Metal Icon + Essie Set in Stones = Best holiday nail combo ever.

Metal Icon is a fabulous gunmetal/silver with multicolor shimmer, and Set in Stones is a chunky silver glitter topcoat. The Essie color actually reminds me of this blog's background...can you tell I like things that sparkle?!

More after the break!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Little Black Dress: Loft Ponte Pleated Sleeveless Dress & Mini Review

I finally found the perfect little black dress! Even though I own pretty much every article of clothing in black, I surprisingly didn't have a black dress. I first saw this dress on, and it caught my eye in a different color, which was more of a cobalt blue. But, when I went to the store to find it they only had black. I still decided to try it on and I ended up loving how it looked!

J.Crew Bling-Button Cardigan, $59.50 (on sale)
J.Crew CeCe stud flats, currently sold out online

This dress definitely runs big. Well, I think Loft clothing runs large in general, but this dress was a size larger than that. At most stores I'm an 8 and at Loft I'm a 6, but I got this dress in a 4. I'm pretty self conscious about my mid-section, and the way this dress falls is very flattering and covers that area well. The dress has pockets, but they don't poof out and make your hips look large. Also, the material is really nice and thick - it's overall a well-made dress.

I like that this can be dressed up or down, worn with tights or bare legged and with heels or flats. It's super versatile, which makes it great for work, or a cocktail party! I definitely recommend wearing a belt around your waist, otherwise it looks kind of plain. The belt I chose is also from Loft and it's in the golden beige color. The gold sequiny detailing looks much more gold in real life, and it matched perfectly with the gold on my flats!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Burgundy & Neon OOTD

I finally received my Express order from Black Friday in the mail, so obviously I had to wear some of my  new items right away! I ordered two things, a jacket and blouse, but I only like the blouse. It is such a gorgeous shade of burgundy, and fits me really well. I like the slit in the back (hence the 'tux tails' name) and that it is hi-lo. I think hi-lo shirts are really flattering!

Here is how I styled the shirt


Tuxedo blouse

Rag bone

Knee length boots

The necklace is from H&M. I bought it in the summer, so it's probably not available in stores now.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Maybelline Color Tattoo 24HR Metal Collection!

This post will be short and sweet, but I couldn't not write about this! I love the Maybelline color tattoos, so I was super excited when I heard of the new 24HR Metal Collection with 5 brand new shades! The best part is these are NOT limited edition. The collection is already out in Canada, and I'm sure it will appear in U.S. drugstores soon.

The shades are: 55 Inked In Pink, 60 Silver Strike, 65 Gold Rush, 70 Barely Branded and 75 Electric Blue.

For more photos (including the display) and some swatches, visit Nouveau Cheap! Also, for a review of Electric Blue, Barely Branded, Gold Rush and Inked Pink click here.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

7 Little Things (November 2012)

Happy December! Sorry this is a little late, but better late than never, right?! Here are my seven beauty favorites from November :)

More about the products after the jump!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Target & Neiman Marcus Collaboration Guide

I'm not sure how I only learned about this YESTERDAY, but since then I've been fangirling (appropriate term?) over the Neiman Marcus for Target collection. My friend and I actually spent a good hour or so talking about everything we wanted, along with our dreams of how we would spend our money if we won the $550 million PowerBall... but I digress.

We plan on getting to our local Target at 7:30 a.m. (it opens at 8 a.m.) because you never know what the turn out will be like, especially after the frenzy over Target's collaboration with Missoni last spring.

Collection details:
- Launches Dec. 1, 2012
- 24 Designers
- 50 items (link!)
- Ranges from $20-$500

Find the items I'm interested in after the break!

Black Friday & Cyber Tuesday Haul!

I had an amazing Thanksgiving and mini vacay from work, and I hope everyone else did too! I didn't do much shopping on Black Friday, instead I made most of my purchases at sales before and after the day.

Here is what I did purchase!

Forever 21 Cable Knit Pointelle Sweaters in Olive and Cream $22.80 each

I bought these sweaters on Cyber Monday. I've wanted cable knit sweaters for awhile, and these ones look super cozy. I also loved the olive green color. I normally wear a medium at F21, but I ordered these in larges because I want the over-sized look.

To make my order eligible for the discount and free shipping I had to spend over $50, so I also bought a pair of earrings and a cami. I own the cami in other colors, and it is really comfortable and the perfect thickness for layering.

UPDATE 12/12: I finally received my Forever 21 order and I have to say, I'm kind of disappointed :(. The sweaters did not look good on me, and even though I ordered them in the same size, the cream one was SUPER small. It fit snugly on my younger sister, who normally wears an xs or s at Forever. The olive one fit me in the large, but I think chunky/cable knit sweaters are not for me. Also, the earrings were way bigger than I expected. I guess I didn't read the description carefully enough, because I thought they were going to be 1/2-1 inches, but they're more like 2 inches, which is huge! I'm definitely returning the sweaters, but I have to keep the earrings because jewelry items are final sale. 

The one thing I do like about ordering off of is that when you return an item you get a full refund, whereas I'm pretty sure in-store purchases can only be returned for a store credit.

More items after the jump!

Urban Decay NEW Naked Basics Palette

This morning I received an email about a new palette by Urban Decay, and I had to tell you all about it! The Naked Basics Palette is the brand's first completely matte palette. It contains six full-sized eye shadows, four of which are new, never-before-seen shades, all for $27.

I am definitely going to snatch this up before it sells out! I'm always looking for good matte eye shadows, and since I love Urban Decay eye shadows in general, this palette is perfect. The packaging looks like a smaller version of the Naked2 Palette, so the smaller design will make it perfect for traveling. I haven't seen many completely matte palettes, except for The Balm's Meet Matt(e) palette, which I reviewed here, so this is a nice change.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Fall Neutrals feat. Rag & Bone Harrow Booties

Today's outfit is pretty plain, but it's super comfy and I love how all of the colors look together. I don't own many brown shoes, so wearing these booties was out of my comfort zone color-wise. However, I'll admit I liked wearing something other than black, because it opened up a whole new neutral palette for me!

At first I didn't think the brown and grey would go well together, but somehow each of these specific colors complement each other perfectly!

Stylemint "Michigan" tee in Cabernet, $30
Loft sweater (last year)
Rag & Bone/Jean Kensington Skinnies, $187
Rag & Bone Harrow Boot, $495

Saturday, November 17, 2012

My Favorite Make Up Brushes

I was cleaning out my brush collection and realized I have accumulated a lot over the past few years! I wanted to come up with a list of my favorite types of brushes and share that with you, so you don't end up like me with a few dozen unused brushes.

The majority of my brushes are from Sigma Beauty and MAC, but there are a few rando brands in there. I would suggest starting with the Sigma brushes though, because they are relatively inexpensive and are GREAT quality. The brushes are just as soft as MAC brushes, maybe even softer, and there is more of a selection to choose from. I have also heard that Sedona Lace brushes are pretty good, but I don't own any so I cannot compare.

Since we are in the holiday season, a great way to improve your brush collection would be to ask for one of the Sigma brush sets as a gift. There are tons of sets to choose from; you can get an essentials kit that includes eyes and face brushes, or you can get a more specific kit for either eyes or face. I personally would love to own the Mr. Bunny Kit, but I need to save up a litte more first!

Eye Shadow brush

I use the MAC 239 Eye Shader Brush to pack color on my lid, smudge shadow under my eyes and place shadow in my crease. This is definitely a multi-purpose brush, even though it was created just for placing color on your lid. The Sigma E55 Eye Shading brush is very similar to the MAC one.

Small Tapered Blending brush

I really like this type of brush because the small taper makes applying color/defining your crease super easy. You are also defining and blending color at the same time. I have both the Sigma E45 and the MAC 226 (limited edition from the MAC Me Over collection, but they are EXACTLY the same), and use this brush on a daily basis to apply crease color. This is different than a normal blending brush, such as the Sigma E25, because it creates a more defined line. It also differs from a stiff dome blending brushes (Sigma E35 or MAC 217) because those apply color more lightly.

Fluffy Blending brush

I love my Sigma E40 Tapered Blending brush. It's amazing at blending out all eye shadow colors once they've been applied to the lid and crease. This ensures that there are no harsh lines around my eyes after using my tapered blending brush.

Eye Liner brush

I use this brush when applying gel eyeliner to my upper lash line. I have the MAC 210 Precise Eye Liner Brush, but you can also get the Sigma E10 Small Eye Liner brush, which is pretty much the same, just less expensive. The brush tip is thin, so it creates a smooth, thin line.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Winter 2012 Nail Polish Collections

We're only one week away from Thanksgiving, and you know what that means...winter nail polish collections have been and are currently being released!

China Glaze has a few Winter/Holiday 2012 collections. I've listed them and their promotional pictures below:

The Holiday Joy collection will be released in mid-November, so you can find it in your local beauty/drug stores now!

Holiday Joy
In-store display

More pictures and information about other Winter/Holiday 2012 collections after the jump!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Celebrity Look for Less: Taylor Swift in Polka Dots

I saw a picture of Taylor Swift on Pinterest a few days ago and absolutely fell in love with her outfit! If you couldn't already tell from my previous post, I am totally into burgundy, so her outfit is one of my faves.

Taylor is wearing cropped, dressier pants, but in the outfit I created I chose burgundy skinny jeans. It's pretty cold where I live, so I think jeans are more appropriate for the weather. Also, jeans make the outfit look more casual.

Outfit information after the jump!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Burgundy Bliss

I recently went a little crazy trying to find burgundy/oxblood/wine clothing and accessories online. I love dark shades, and purple is my favorite color, so this deep red/purple fall color trend is obviously my favorite - I want to own everything in this color!

At first I was going to provide links to all of the items I found, but there were just WAY too many. Instead, I picked out a few of my favorites (that are fabulous!) and listed them below :)

Top: Loft $50, Banana Republic $40
Bottom: Loft $45, Express $50, Ann Taylor $118


Top: Banana Republic $90, Tobi $62, J Crew $80 (similar here), Ann Taylor $70 (on sale)
Bottom: Loft $60, J Crew $62, Express $70, Loft $50

Blazers & Outerwear
Top: Shopbop $72 (similar here), $94, Express $90 (on sale)
Bottom: Nordstrom $110, J Crew $248

Pants, accessories and shoes after the jump!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

7 Little Things (October 2012)


I'm still allowed to be excited about Halloween even if I don't trick-or-treat anymore, right?!

Anyway, here are my 7 beauty faves for this month, enjoy!

1. Paul Mitchell Smoothing Gloss Drops, $18.95
This product was recommended to me by my hairstylist when I asked for something that would smooth hair and tame frizz, and it's worked amazingly! I've heard a lot of people rave about the Paul Mitchell Skinny Serum, and though I haven't tried it yet, I think I will stick to this one. Also, it gives your hair that 'fresh out of the salon' smell, which I don't mind, but other people might.

2. MAC Ring of Saturn Mineralize Blush
This is a beautiful plum shade (described as terracotta and gold melange by MAC), which is perfect for fall. The pigmentation is pretty good considering it is a mineralize blush, and it can definitely be built up to go on darker. This is from the Heavenly Creatures Fall 2012 collection, which you may be able to find at your local CCO (cosmetic company outlet).

3. Mascara combo: Revlon PhotoReady 3D Volume in Blackest Black, $8.99 and Clinique High Impact Curling in Black, $16
I don't really like these mascaras individually, but together they work pretty well. I find the Revlon one is too dry and the Clinique one is too wet, but when combined they even each other out and give me long/curled lashes. I curl my lashes, apply the Revlon mascara, apply the Clinique mascara and then curl my lashes again.

Fab Fall Find: F21 Zippered Denim Ankle Skinnies

I am totally into the Oxblood/Wine/Burgundy (whatever you want to call it) color trend this season. When I found these Forever 21 skinny jeans I was so excited because they are super cute with the zipper detailing around the ankles AND they are inexpensive.

I've worn these non-stop since getting them. They are comfortable, stretchy and very flattering. The key to pulling off colored jeans - even dark colors - is to make sure they are not skin tight. Colored jeans aren't the most forgiving pants, so it's not the end of the world if you have to go up a size. However, the stretch in this pair makes buying your usual size, or even a size down, possible.

Click after the link to see the outfit I wore today!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Halloween Polish 2012

Halloween is officially one week away - I'm so excited!! I can't wait to see what kind of pop culture costumes people will come up with. I'm expecting a lot of Honey Boo Boos and Fab Fives.

Anyway, on to more beauty-related Halloween things. A few nail polish brands have come out with Halloween nail polish collections. Here they are!

OPI So So Skullicious Minis
Image via Google Images
L to R: Hi, Pumpkin!; A-Rose From the Dead; Morning Glory and Candlelight

More collections after the jump!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Comfy & Casual Traveling

This weekend I visited one of my friends in Philly. I took the train, and even though the ride was only two hours, I still wanted to be comfortable. I'm not the type of person that will sacrifice looking cute just so I can be comfortable, so I had to find an outfit that fit both parts!

I opted for a white flowy sweater, black leggings, black boots and a grey moto jacket.

H&M Sweater in White, $24.95
Black Leggings
Enzo Angiolini 'Saylem' Riding Boot, $159.95

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Balm: Meet Matt(e) and Nude 'Tude Palettes

The brand The Balm has always been on my radar, but I've never owned anything from them. Recently, I was in NYC with some of my friends and one of them had the Nude 'Tude palette. I took one look at it and knew I had to get it! It's definitely The Balm's version of the Urban Decay Naked palettes (I own both), but the packaging was adorable (yes, I know this is not a reason to buy a palette) and the colors were a mix of neutral shimmers, which are my favorite! Anyway, I didn't buy the palette because of the $36 price tag, and I wasn't ready to spend that much on make-up at the time.

However, a few weeks ago The Balm was on Hautelook and the Nude 'Tude palette was on sale for 50% off!! I knew I had to take advantage of the deal. I ended up getting that and the Meet Matt(e) palette, all for the price of one! Such a great deal.

Both palettes have gorgeous shades. I love buying/owning palettes because of the variety in colors that is offered. I've mentioned before that I am more attracted to neutral colors, but my collection would be so boring if those were the only ones I owned! It's nice to buy a palette where the majority of colors are ones I'd pick out for myself, but that also comes with a few colors I'd never buy individually on my own.

Remember to click on the photos below for a better view!