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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

An Ulta Haul for Lashes!

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A few weeks ago I was visiting a friend in a different town and we decided to do some shopping, as you do. Now it happened to be freezing, snowing, and all around a crap day outside. So what better to do then spend a few hours milling around Ulta? So we did, and had a blast! Spending so much time in the store allowed me to test and pickup a few items that I don't usually purchase.

Also, if you follow me on Twitter (if don't you should here), I'm sure you've heard me going on about the new waterproof formula of Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara. I also included that in this haul as I received it around the same time.

On this shopping trip I purchased a few items because of the eye issues I've been having. Over the last year or so I've developed dry eye syndrome and have had trouble with eye makeup ever since, especially mascara. I am always on the hunt for mascara that won't smudge and give me raccoon eyes! So the false lashes and waterproof mascara were some of the products I wanted to use to help with the problem.

See below for the haul and reviews as it's been a while since I took this trip.

Vegas Nay Lashes - Classic Charm
First-off I've only tried fake lashes once and never wore them outside my living room so to me, these lashes are intense! I am a glasses wearer so they are actually a bit too long for me. I've only tried them at home and haven't worn them out yet. I plan to trim them and give them a proper try as they really do open up my eyes.

Full-On Lip Polish - Jennifer
I am not a lipstick fan, they just don't seem to fit me even though I've tried (see my collection here). So I decided to give glosses a go again, I haven't tried any for a very long time (10 years?). In the store I had swatches all over my hand and ended up choosing Jennifer. It's a nice mauvey-purple color which shows on the lips transparently. The iridescent glitter doesn't really show on the lips, it adds a great sheen though. But what really got me about these glosses was the feeling on my lips. They have a minty tingle that just feels soothing and... cool! It's supposed to plump (which I don't need) but I didn't notice any plumping. Oh and it lasts really well for a gloss! I may now be obsessed, I want them all... Are you listening Santa?

Naturals No. 11 (Similar Here)
These lashes are much more natural than the Vegas Nays as the name would suggest. I have worn them a few times and found them to be comfortable and replace the need for mascara. Which really is the goal. I definitely need to continue practicing with falsies though as I'm not quite ready to tackle these at 5am all groggy before work... I can see poking myself in the eye now.

Hi Definition Photo Concealer Wand - Fair
I've purchased this concealer before in Porcelain (here and used it here) but they were out so I grabbed Fair. It's not a big enough difference to keep me from using it under my eyes, around my nose, and everywhere really. I do love this budget concealer, although I've been needing a more heavy duty one recently (see what I've been using here). This a great all-rounder and I've even used it almost as a foundation on good skin days and it does the job well.

Too Faced
Better Than Sex Waterproof Mascara
I was really excited for this mascara as I loved the original (which I review here), so I bought it online on the 1st day it was available. So upon trying it I remembered that like original these have a very wet formula and a light hand is needed until it dries out a bit. After a few weeks is when these guys hit their prime! I really like the volume and length this mascara gives, it's almost magical. This is crazy volume that's slightly clumpy, which I like, but beware if you're not into clumps. The wand is also huge and can be daunting but once you get used to it it really does wonderful things to your lashes. Let me know if you want a full review with before and after shots (I can definitely do that). My big issue is that it still smudges on me and ends up making me look like I've been punched in the eye a few hours in. I've tried setting it with powder and setting spray with the same results. My eye troubles may be to blame for this, but thought you all should know. I'll still wear it, but not for a long time and with extra concealer on hand.


Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Spring Wardrobe Wishlist

Spring Wishlist 2016

For this first time in years I'm actually excited for spring! I can't wait for warmer (but not too warm) weather, sunshine, walking the dog, hiking, and just being outdoors. 

I am also extremely excited for spring fashion. Now I know what you're thinking, "These aren't very springy colors, Amber." I know but I'm just not a bright or pastel type person. So this is my version of spring clothing! 

See below for the items on my spring wardrobe shopping list for the upcoming months.

Leather Jacket

I'll be honest with you, I wasn't completely sold on the leather jacket thing until recently. I don't know why, but now I'm on board 100%. I think I would opt for a cheaper faux leather version, but I loved the cut and texture of this jacket from Mango. It would toughen up any outfit and would also keep you warm on the cooler days or evenings. Also the coolness factor of a leather jacket is off the charts!

Flare Jeans

How long has it been since I've worn flare jeans? 5 years? 10? I don't remember. But this year I'm into them again. I'm loving a higher rise jean version to accentuate my waist and would wear them with wedges or platforms of some sort. I think high-waisted flares elongate your look and make your hips look slimmer - done and done.

Off the Shoulder Top

As someone who's not totally thrilled with the state of my body, I've had trouble finding feminine and sexy items I like. I think off the shoulder tops are a great way to show off my shoulders without showing my arms or stomach. It's my version of sexy and I really love this particular top. Prints can be a challenge for me but these red flowers are the perfect amount of delicate, feminine, sexy, and bad ass!


I'm sure you've heard it a million times, but sneakers are in! I know the most popular versions are all white. Let's be honest I'm not going to keep those clean so these red ones are perfect! They are still casual and add a little height with the platforms and would add a pop of color to my mostly neutral wardrobe. Yes please!

Cross-body Bag

I don't know about you all but I'm sick of big bags. They're awkward, make my shoulders and neck hurt, and they allow me to haul around too much crap. That's why this spring I'd like to transition to a smaller bag. Cross-bodys can be a little challenging for us larger-busted ladies but I think the right bag can work if the strap isn't too thin (it might disappear!) or too thick and if the bag sits a little higher on the hip so it's not so weighed down. I really love this tan color for spring, definitely not as harsh as black or white.

What are you wanting to add to your wardrobe for spring?

Thursday, April 7, 2016

March 2016 Favorites

March has been a challenging month beauty-wise as weather in Colorado was crazy! We had a few days in the 60's or 70's and we had a few snowstorms. So needless to say, my skin and hair were having some issues!

But that led me to find some really great products that worked wonders for me!

Damascus Rose Face Oil

At the beginning of the month I ran out of night and day moisturizers - the struggle was real! I was really out of the day and needed a replacement quickly so I picked up the 1st cruelty-free option with SPF that I saw.... bad choice! My face had a really bad reaction and I got little red bumps all over my face. So I freaked and went online to find a night oil/moisturizer that was calming and soothing to help with the bumps.

Long story short, best decision ever! It turns out that the last few years of oiliness and acne could have been solved with oil! What?!? I had used oils before with some success, but they were light oils and oil cleansers, so I was nervous about this product. I put 1/2 to a full pump on my face at night and my skin has improved dramatically! The red bumps went away, I'm less oily, and my acne scars have calmed some. This affordable drugstore product has rocked my face! And having the best skin I've had in a long time.

It's a 10
Miracle Hair Mask

I've raved about the It's a 10 Leave-In about a year ago here and this mask was a 2015 favorite here.

I had to bring it up again because this mask is so good and the original tub is still going strong, it's been about 2 months now! I use it once or twice a week (I would use it more if it weren't for the price) and my hair is smooth, easy to brush, and oh-so-soft. I cannot sing this product's praises enough, but I promise I'll stop bringing it up. Just get some, you'll thank me.

Clear Start Oil Clearing Matte Moisturizer - SPF 15

After the debacle with moisturizer earlier in the month, I did my research for a moisturizer with SPF. I found that this moisturizer had good reviews online for gals with oily skin as the name suggests. I took the plunge and haven't looked back. This is a light moisturizer that doesn't make me greasy at all, it actually holds the oils at bay for a good portion of the day. I do find, right now as it's still really dry here that it's too light for me, so I've been adding a drop of the Badger oil to help hydrate my skin. I do think during the summer months this will be great though. This is also provides a great base for under makeup, which is a plus :)

Wet n' Wild
Photofocus Setting Spray

I spoke about this recently in a New In: Wet n Wild feature and have since given it a thorough testing. I can honestly say I can't live without this setting spray now, I'm hooked. I use it every morning after applying all my face products. Usually before my eyebrow gel and mascara, though after works too. I do 3-4 spritzes across my face. This spray brings down the powdery look that can sometimes happen to leave my makeup looking natural and dewy. It also locks everything in place for a solid 6-8 hours. I love this stuff so much and have had to hold myself back from buying and hoarding more (at this price who wouldn't?!). But I will be purchasing a back up to make sure I don't run out!

There were some great products this month that I really enjoyed using! I have especially noticed a difference with my new skincare regimen. Let me know if you're interested in an updated skincare post.

Have a great April!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

30 Life Lessons - Adulting

Today is part 5 (the final one) of my series on 30 at 30 - Life Lessons. Being an adult is hard- there are so many things to know, learn, fail at, succeed at, and forget! Below are the few life lessons that I think it's important to know and make being an adult just a tab bit easier!

This series has sections; Confidence and Beauty (see here), Living with Intention (see here), Self-Care (see here), Finances (see here), and Adulting. If you've missed any click the links for more great info and to join the conversation!

Being an Adult

Picture from Pixabay

  1. Be able to change a tire. Okay so I only did this on my own recently (and it was hard) but I just feel like it's such a valuable skill and I felt so accomplished when I did it!
  2. A basic knowledge of tools. No you don't need to know how to use a drill press or jigsaw (though super cool if you do!), but it's very helpful to be able to hammer, tell the difference between a phillips and a flathead screwdrivers, and how to use a wrench.
  3. Know how to nail a job search. This includes having a kick-ass resume, cover letter, and interview. I could do a whole post on this, but the key is to remember to highlight your accomplishments and above all be professional!
  4. Negotiate like a boss! Ok, so maybe not a boss, but you should be able to negotiate the price of a car or your own salary with confidence. I know this one's hard... but I heard once on NPR that women can negotiate for others but don't do it for themselves. So next time you're in a situation to negotiate, pretend you're doing it for someone else... what are someone else's skills worth to an employer? Trust me, it works!
  5. How to vote. Whether you're democrat, republican, or anything in between or outside you should vote. It is my firm belief that if more of us participated in the process we would have more impact on what our government does. Also, if you don't vote you can't bitch.... and I like to bitch, so there you go!
  6. How to Meal Plan and Grocery Shop. Meal planning is key to not buying and eating junk, or ending up with 3 jars of jam and no peanut butter. Also, knowing the grocery store is essential. I organize my shopping list by sections in the store (produce, meat, dairy, dry goods) that way once in the store I don't stray down aisles that can get me in trouble (oh the chips).
  7. Know how to give/receive directions. Are you a left/right person or a North/South person? Do you need landmarks to know where you're going, or miles and feet? It's a pet peeve of mine when people solely rely of GPS to get them places. But if you do, you should still have a rudimentary knowledge of how to get somewhere/un-lost if GPS steers you wrong.
Woo! That's it you made it through 30 by 30 Life Lessons, cheers!

Join the Conversation!

         What tips/lessons/advice would you add to know by 30?
         What's the best piece of advice you've been given and who told it to you?