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Friday, November 27, 2015

What I'm Thankful For - Week 4

Well this is the last week... it's officially the end of #ThankfulNovember. As always, I feel so much better when I'm focused on the positive things in my life and have a gratitude attitude. Although this hasn't been the easiest month or year, focusing on the things I can be thankful for really helps my attitude and my overall outlook on life.

Don't get me wrong I get down sometimes, but now I'll have these lists to go back to and remember how truly lucky and blessed I am! Happy Thanksgiving everyone, I hope you had a great holiday!

For this week I wanted to focus on the bigger things in life and the important things that I'm thankful for.

I am grateful for:

  • My dog Sage, and cats Styx and Jack - It's so nice to have someone to be happy when you come home, offer snuggles, and make you laugh.
  • My job, home, and car... even though I may not always be happy with these things, I have them and that's something!
  • My family - there's just so much to say about them I don't even know if I'd ever be able to write it all down or truly express my gratitude but here's a few of the things my mom, brother, grandma, aunts, uncles, cousins, and second cousins do (yep it's a large family):
    • Hugs when I'm feeling down
    • Hilarious (and sometimes disgusting) jokes and chats
    • Laughter
    • A warm welcome
    • Constant support and caring; whether it's through a call, a thank you, a "I'm here for you", a long talk, an invite to keep you from being lonely, or an "I love you"
    • Babies who are learning and growing and laughing and so much fun
    • A mom who's there no matter what (even when I'm sassy)
    • A brother who offers me so much help and is just fun to hang out with
    • A BCF (best cousin forever) who's just like my sister and has been such wonderful support this year
    • Again there's just too much because without my family I just don't know where I'd be in life
  • My health - overall I'm pretty healthy and my complaints are minor compared to so many
See I just have so much to be grateful for each and every day (I might be crying a little as I'm writing this). It's been a rough year for me and the only way I'm surviving and healing is remembering these blessings. I hope you all are able to keep that gratitude attitude going throughout this holiday season!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Tarte Deal = Haul Time

I've been on a self-imposed shopping ban this month as I had a little too much fun last month. But a few weeks ago I was notified of a Tarte deal to pick 7 items for $59! And I was totally suckered in... and I love it! So the ban starts now! No now! Now!

I have been wanting to try Tarte's powder foundation, blushes, and Lights, Cameras, Flashes mascara for a while now and this deal allowed me to do that all at once. I was extremely excited when the package arrived on Saturday... there even may have been some squealing.

So below is what I picked out and my thoughts on the products I've tried so far :)

Makeup Bag
I believe this bag was exclusive to this deal as I can't find it on their site now. It is a nice size bag that is a purple and neutral/gold fabric woven design. It will come in handy for travel (not that I do that much, but maybe).

Lights, Camera, Flashes Statement Mascara
I am always on the lookout for a great mascara that gives mega volume, length, and that is waterproof. I've loved the Lights, Camera, Lashes version for the last few years. Unfortunately it's not waterproof and as always I was trying other things. I've heard good reviews of this mascara though, and even though I'm not a plastic brush person, I thought I'd give this a try. I'll report back soon :)

Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Airbrush Foundation
Another product I'm always searching for; that holy grail foundation. This is another product I've heard good things about. I have tried it and I'd say it's a medium coverage foundation and it has a really nice matte-but-not-too-matte finish. However, on my oily skin it doesn't keep me matte for long throughout the day only around 5 hours or so.

Airbuki Bamboo Powder Foundation Brush
So glad I got this brush to use with the powder. I'm not sure I have another brush that would work. You need a stiff brush to push into the screen and pull out the foundation. Overall though I like the way this puts on the foundation in a really natural way while still providing coverage.

Lipsurgence Matte Lip Tint - Hope
As you may have noticed from this post I'm not a lipstick person, but this came with the set so I'll give it a try... haven't yet though.

Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush - Dollface
I've been wanting to try a Tarte blush for so long, and just never took the plunge. Well "hello Dollface" is it awesome (see what I did there? Oh yea)! The color of this blush looks really cool and kind of unwearable but on it gives a really nice glow to the cheeks... you just look healthy. I can't speak to the staying power, but I'll report back if it's any good.

Lipsurgence Lip Creme - Stunning
Same deal as the matte lip tint, this came as a sample with my order. But I like the color so we'll see.

Smoldereyes Amazonian Clay Waterproof Eyeliner - Brown
I've been using the Jordana eyeliner in Brown (mentioned here) as I really love how easily it glides on and blends out, but unfortunately it doesn't last as long as I'd like. So I decided to try this Tarte version as a replacement... and oh yea it's worth the extra money! It glides onto the lids like butter and blends out easily, but once it sets it stays! Now every liner will smudge on my lower lash lines due to my dry eye troubles and the constant need for eye drops. But this stuff really lasted through all that and didn't have as much smudging yet it still was pretty easy to get off. I like it!

Well that's the haul that shouldn't of happened, but did. So happy holidays to me, no more makeup until the new year! And Happy Thanksgiving to all of you in the states this week!

Friday, November 20, 2015

What I'm Thankful For - Week 3

Wow, this week has been a rough one for me. Work has been... well just grrr! So it's been harder for me to come up with this week's post, but I think that's what makes this all the more important. You know, nothing cheers me up more than remember what I have to be grateful for. You know instead of bitching and moaning that I don't have the best wardrobe, the newest it makeup item, or Thanksgiving outfit, etc... I can focus on the things I do have (and am damn lucky to have!).

So here are the things I've been grateful for this week:
  • I Have an apartment in a nice area and a car. Even though I've been short on funds, I have a place to call home and a car I really like.
  • Christmas music is officially on the radio! (KOSI 101.1 and 107.9 in Denver). Christmas music immediately gets me into the holiday spirit and lifts my mood.
  • Cleaning out my closet. I have been doing a big overhaul of decorations, clothes, and random other things all month. But I finally went through my closet and it feels great! I was really harsh on myself and decided to only keep those things I realistically wear and love. Man oh man the bags of stuff that need to go to the Goodwill.
  • Cozying up under blankets... I love blankets... I love to be cozy... that is all.
  • And in light of what happened in Paris last week (which is awful and horrible), I am just grateful to be alive.
Whoops things got a little serious, but these are what I've been thankful for this week. How about you?

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Confessed Lipstick Skeptic

I've definitely mentioned it on here before, but let's do it again. I just cannot jump on the lipstick bandwagon, not a fan. Yet for the sake of argument I have purchased more than my fair share to try out.

So for fun I tried them all on so I would be able to see if I really don't look good for lipstick or if I just think so... doing this I did learn a few things:

  • I own the same four colors multiple times! (Mauvey-nude, coral, pink, and dark red)
  • Most colors wash me out... so I don't know what color suits me.
  • Lipstick brings out the lopsided nature of my lips I never noticed before :(
  • Trying on 10 lipsticks at once (ok in 2 go's) is extremely drying on the lips.
  • Gimme Burt's Bees any day!
For comparison, below is a picture of my normal lip color
Without Lipstick
Here are a lot of selfies with the different lipsticks on; oh so many Ambers!

Lipstick colors:
  • Row 1: Nars Rikugien, NYX Pure Nude, NYX Chic
  • Row 2: NYX Pop, Wet n Wild Think Pink, Ellen Tracy Coral Lip Pencil (no name)
  • Row 3: Wet n Wild Dollhouse Pink, ELF Wine, Nars Cruella
FYI... Nars and Ellen Tracy are not cruelty-free products. The Nars lipsticks came from a Sephora B-day gift and the other was a long ago purchase.

Any thoughts on lipstick? Are you on the bandwagon? Is there a color/brand I should be trying?

Overall, I think it's time to clear out the lipstick collection and maybe try glosses! So there could be another one of these posts in the not-too-distant future!

Friday, November 13, 2015

What I'm Thankful for - Week 2

Another week has gone by in November and I've picked out some of the moments, people, animals, and anything else I've been thankful for this week. Don't forget to join me for #ThankfulNovember on Twitter and Instagram!

This week I have been thankful for:

  • My brother who will always listen to my rants over the phone and offer a kind word or two. Also he's the best to chat with about movies, books, and nerdy stuff!
  • Hallmark Channel Christmas movies... I'm addicted... and I'm not even sorry... and I might be contemplating Christmas decorations already!
  • My nephew who's 1! Seeing him grow and learn is so much fun. Not to mention teaching him how to throw leaves or see how many mini pumpkins he can carry. He was gone this last weekend when we would normally hangout and I missed him!
  • Dog and Cat snuggles to keep me warm on these chilly nights.
  • The fact that I feel I am healing slowly but surely from my separation. I see myself letting go of anger and hurt and becoming more accepting of the situation and hopeful for my future.
These are the biggies for me this week. What have you been thankful for?

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

November Wishlist

Now that it's in November I'm in full coziness mode. Pretty much every morning I just want to wear the coziest thing in my closet and snuggle up. To achieve the warmth and style I need this time of year I thought I'd put together a wishlist for you all of the items I'd like to add to my wardrobe for the rest of this season and to bring me into winter.

November Wishlist

I promise this wasn't supposed to be an outfit, but when I sat down to Polyvore to put this list together it just turned out to be one... and one that I would totally rock! LOL! Here's a breakdown of the items.

  • Forest Green Nail Polish - I have been getting bored of my nail colors lately. I have a lot of dark blues, dark reds, blacks, and natural colors, which I love don't get me wrong but I wanted something new and fun. So when I thought about it, a forest green seemed to fit the bill. And this one is also iridescent, score!
  • Chunky Knit Sweater - I've seen these on all the blogs I read and they look so warm and cozy! I'm not sure how they'd look on me but this is all imagination people and in my mind I'd rock a chunky sweater.
  • Light-ish Jacket - Jackets are on most of my wishlists; I love them because they instantly make an outfit more stylish and versatile. And this one.... I fell in love with! That color and plaid, and cut, and fabric... swoon.
  • Lace-up Boots - Because of my foot troubles, I'm on a flat, but supportive shoe kick. I love these lace-up boots because you can wear thick or normal socks with them, wear them over or under pants and through most weather. I think these would add function and style to my wardrobe.
  • Pleather Pants - I'm not sure how warm these would be, but I'd like to think they'd keep you toasty. I think pleather pants are great to class up and add a different texture to fall knits.
These are the items I'm lusting after this month (see why I need that weekly thankful list!), is there anything you want to add to your closet or beauty bag this November?

Friday, November 6, 2015

What I'm Thankful For - Week 1

So it's November.... fall is officially here! The leaves are changing and falling, sweaters are out, scarves are making their first appearance, and I'm planning to cook Thanksgiving dinner. As I've said before, and I'm sure I'll say again before the season is up; I love this time of year!

To commemorate this month and the grateful mindset that Thanksgiving brings about I wanted to do a series on what I've been thankful for each week. I will include big things and the little everyday things I've been thankful for as well.

I think we should have a gratitude attitude all year long, but at this time of year I find it especially important at this time of year. We're about to enter the season of "I want, I want, I want" so let's do a little spiritual prepping to stave off the gimme's and focus on the things we value! Won't you join me on Twitter or Instagram for #ThankfulNovember?!

This week I am thankful for:
  • Scarf weather is finally here and I love them.... so cozy!
  • I received word from the doctor that it's okay to walk again - more Sage walks!
  • On that same note, I have a plan now for my feet (plantar fasciitis) and hopefully the pain will get better.
  • Talks with my Grandma - she's a great listener!
  • Coffee, lots of coffee.
  • My cats have been adorable and extra snugly this week.
These are a few of the things I've been grateful for this week, how about you?

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Burgundy Fall Makeup

Picture this: it's the year 2000 and a 15 year old Amber is getting ready for school; she's rocking some bootcut jeans, skater shoes, and a band shirt (Chevelle to be specific). She's standing in front of the mirror putting on her makeup which consists of mostly foundation, eye shadow, and lots of black eyeliner and mascara :) What color eye shadow would she reach for? Brown? Blue? Gray? Oh no, red eye shadow was her thing, purchased at non-other than Hot Topic! Oh 2000's (not sure if that's a nostalgia or embarrassment sigh) .... I loved that red eye shadow; it was bold, brought out my blue eyes, and sassy... everything a teenager wants in her makeup look :)

Now that I'm older and maybe wiser I've realized red eye shadow may not be the way to go for me anymore. But I'm just not ready to give up on it fully.

Now enter, burgundy eye shadow; it's red's grown up cousin and it's really beautiful. This is more of a mature take on the look as it's not so primary and bright, but darker and with more brown tones in it.

Keep reading for how I achieved a fun fall look that's still grown-up enough to wear in the day and sassy enough for night!

Prepare yourself for some weird awkward faces :)

I start off with a light brown blending color to keep the burgundy from being too stark.

Then I packed on the burgundy-red color with a flat eye shadow brush. I had to build up the color for a bit and went over with my finger for the last layer to really make it stand out. Blend the edges again with the light brown color.

This is my favorite face by far! I then used some of the light brown to light my under eye area. I think it pulls everything together and grounds it all a bit.

I finished it off with some black eyeliner and lots of mascara. I really love the final look!

This color is great and I'll be wearing it again for sure, I think it did bring out my eyes just like I remember. But it's definitely more grown up in the best way :) Although I still totally want to break out into "All the Small Things" by blink182 and dance around my room, pretending that I won't hurt tomorrow... getting old sucks! Anyway....

Here's the shadows I used for this look: