Thursday, October 31, 2013

Relvon Nail Art Style Strips - Fashion Hound

While going abroad I was debating whether I should paint my nails or get them done. I figured both ways, I might still end up with chips. I thought I should give nail strips I try since I know they have no downtime and don't really chip or peel. The pink and black sparkly houndstooth pattern was very nice and playful. Some people had asked me how long did it take to do that pattern, I just smiled and said "forever!". The package came with 16 strips, a nail file and orange stick. While it was very easy to go on and use  but it took a bit of practice since it was awhile since I used nail strips. I occasionally had used for an accent nail.  Most of the strips I was able to fit on my nail but some were a tad to big or small but I was able to snip the excess. I did get a bit sad on those where sizes were too small and the only other "available" one was way too big. Overall, I got almost 6 days before I got tired of wearing it and started picking at the ends that were lifting up a bit. But I am sure if I applied a top coat, the edges would have stayed firmly down.  It was a nice way to try a new trend or decorate one nail "fancy", without a lot of work and effort. Plus if you have really small nails you can squeeze two uses out of one strip! :)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Etre Belle Beauty System Collagen and Aloe Vera Hydro Mask

Photo Source - Etre Belle

What is the best part of travelling to Europe on your Birthday? Spending as much as you like because it is _your_birthday, friends, family, food, the scenery, new experiences, culture...okay...and shopping! :) I came across this when shopping one day and I thought I should give it a try. After all, I love facial masks and well, it seems like it something special to Europe. I was a bit hesitant to purchase the mask because it was 30 Euros  which was around $43 and that was not including how much it cost me to exchange my USD to Euros. I figured I might as well, since I was on vacation and my face was getting a bit dry and tired looking. Plus I figured it was a lot cheaper than getting a facial and I do need to look my best for all the cute guys, hey you never know, my life might become a cutesy rom com!  I like how the kit came with 10 masks and 1 bottle of serum to apply during the evening. In all honesty, I lost the serum because I was saving  it to use after the mask and I am a bit annoyed  over losing it. But getting 10 masks for around $40 still brings it down to $4 a mask. I love how smooth, soft and radiant my skin felt after using the mask. My face was literally drenched with serum from the mask. I had a bunch of serum left from the mask that I eventually rubbed on the back of my hands. After removing the mask, I followed up with a moisturizer and my face felt like it was glowing.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


Hi Everyone,

Sorry for the lack of posts, I been on vacation recently and I should be back by the end of October. I actually decided spur of the moment to spend my 26th birthday touring Kiles, Copenhagen, and Paris. While I thought I would post some of my finds, I found out the hard way Wifi is super expensive. When I find a cheap connection, I will be sure to post some photos and finds (although, I spent most of the time getting lost and travelling, the downside of travelling alone and not planning).

Hope to see you  soon!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Marie Claire Fall Hair Color Guide 2013

To prevent blonde hair from going brassy, use a lavender tinted shampoo weekly. Strawberry tinged hair brings out redness in skin, so go easy on the blush when your hair is this shade. To keep red hair from fading, shampoo less frequently and cover up in the sun. For dark hair a mist of shine spray keeps midnight hues from looking dull.

7 Habits of Highly Effective Hair Color
1. Take note of your emotional state before you dye. You’ve likely heard of breakovers - those fevered hair and makeup decisions that follow a breakup, only to be regretted shortly thereafter.
2. Let your skin tone not your color whims guide your choice. Before you make a color switch, determine what works your complexion. If you have cool undertones or olive skin, you want warmth  in your hair to balance it out. If you’re more pinkish or flush easily, you want an ashier, or cooler, hair color. If your skin tone is neutral, you can go either way.
3. The test strand isn’t optional.  You need to nail the timing and figure out whether or not you like the color before you commit. Snap a thin lock a hair from the back of your head and do a dry run.
4. Know whether to wash first. For semi-permanent dye, you want clean hair when you color. The formula don’t have strong chemicals, so in order for them to penetrate, there can’t be oil, dirt, or styling products coating the cuticle. If you’re using permanent color with ammonia and peroxide or a home-highlighting kit, then you want hair  that hasn’t been washed in a day or two. The oil will protect your scalp from burning and your hair from getting damaged.
5. Prep your skin before you dye. A stained forehead may seem inevitable, but it’s preventable. Apply a hair wax or any kind of oil - even olive oil - along the hairline first.
6. Lighten up around your face. Think of it as a halo effect: for the most flattering look, go one shade lighter along your hairline. If you’re dyeing your hair light brown, do a dark blonde there. Those fine hairs tend to grab more dye and can become a shade or two deeper, but you actually want that area to be brighter, since it make you look younger and healthier.
7. Don’t overdye the ends. If you’re going darker, the porous ends can soak up more dye than the root area, making it obvious your shade is from a box. To maintain the color, just touch up the roots as needed. Only pull the dye through to the ends when they start to fade, about every third or fourth time your color. And when you dye the tips, wet them slightly first. The water makes pulling the color easier and prevents your hair from absorbing too much color there.

*I apparently lost the thumbail of this magazine :( *

Traditional Home July and August 2013

Lavender -
Lavender flowers and buds are bost cooking. Release their flavor by steeping the buds in liquid, chopping and adding to batters, or grinding and adding to sugar. Harvest lavender by cutting the stem close to the foliage. The most flavorful blossoms are those that have not completely bloomed, but are violet in color. Rubbing the buds between your fingers releases their essential oils.

Savory -
Both summer and winter savory can be used for cooking, each in its namesake season. Add several sprigs to cooking liquid for legumes, or chop the leaves and stir into rice or grain as they cook. Harvest savory about one-third down then store the stem. Remove the leaves by grasping the top of the stem and gently pulling the stem through your fingers. This method works for most stemmed herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and oregano.

Lemon Verbena -
Lemon verbena parks a wallop flavoring teas and syrups or infused in milk, it also pairs well with tangy ingredients. Chop the coarse leaves very fine when use fresh, or strain them out when cooked in liquids. The leaves from this plant can grow up to 4 inches; use the smaller ones for cooking. Combine finely chopped leaves with sugar, then store to create a lemon infused sugar for baking for syrups and teas.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Seventeen September 2013

Picking the perfect exfoliator -
Oily - a gel scrub - your goal: de-gunk the dirt and stop oil so your skin doesn’t get shiny. What you need is a gel-based scrub with salicylic acid. The gentle beds get the schmutz out of your pores, and the salicylic acids swoops in to kill bacteria that could cause pimples.
Normal - an exfoliating brush:  sometimes even after you wash, there’s makeup left on your skin, and that buildup leads to breakouts! Using an exfoliating brush with your basic cleanser loosens and removes the leftover makeup that has seeped inside your pores.
Sensitive - a creamy formula: inflamed zits are the worst! And since your skin is extra - sensitive, you need to tackle acne in a gentle way so your blemishes don’t erupt and get irritated. A cream based exfoliant is a way more delicate on your face but still unclogs.

How to:
1. Clean it up - first use a mild face wash to cleanse your skin. This step may seem redundant, but before you exfoliate, you want a clean canvas. Then the exfoliant can focus on digging out the stubborn dirt and oil that are stuck deeper inside your pores.
2. Scrub a dub - lightly massage exfoliator onto skin for one full minute in upward circular motions. Start at your chin, move up your cheeks, and end at the top of your forehead. Do this only twice a week - any more and you could irritate your skin and make acne worse!
3. Get baby soft - wash off with warm water and pat don’t rub, your skin dry with a clean towel. Then dab on a moisturizer to really bring out your soft new glow. Don’t worry that it will re-gunkify your face: if you get one that says non-comedogenic on the bottle, it means that it doesn’t clog pores.

Love your texture!
Straight - give sleep strands a extra boost with a volumizer. For instant body, apply  in small sections, really working the product through from roots to roots.
Wavy  - to perfect your just-went-surfing waves, wait until your hair is partially dried before scrunching in cream gel all over.
Curly - say goodbye to frizz by combing a styling cream through damp hair with a wide tooth comb. Then use a diffuser to get your bounciest curls.
Relaxed  - straightening treatments can take a serious toll on your locks - making them dry and damaged. Keep strands healthy and shiny with a split end serum that binds damaged parts.
Super - Curly  - don’t let your springs look lifeless! Use an oil enriched formula that defines and enhances natural curls and adds mega shine.

Marie Claire October 2013

Happy Feet-  A quick hit guide to the essential shapes every woman needs in her closet
The stiletto -  an all-around outfit enhancer for special occasions or dressing up denim
The riding boot - ideal for cold-weather days when trekking through snow, slush, or rain is unavoidable
The knee boot - when wearing shorts, skirts, or leggings to accentuate your legs
The ballet flat - for casual days when being comfortable trumps all
The kitten heel - your saving grace during eight hour workday followed by after dark dinner
The wedge - because more surfaces hits the ground, it’s stabilizing  on tricky terrain like cobblestone
The ankle boot - versatile [looks chic with almost anything] and universally flattering, it lends height and provides coverage

Have a pimple?
Do this home remedy and it will be like the pimple never existed. First, clean the area with a cotton pad soaked in lemon juice or white vinegar [both are natural antiseptic].  Then wrap an ice cube in tissue so it won’t burn your skin and gently press it on the area for a minute or two - a few seconds on, a few seconds off - to reduce any swelling. Finally, make a paste of 1 teaspoon powdered brewer’s yeast and ½ teaspoon milk, put it on the spot overnight, and rinse off in the morning. The milk’s lactic acid reduces inflammation, and the yeast kills the bacteria.  Keep this up for a few days if necessary, and whatever you do, don’t squeeze around it to bring it to the surface - that only makes things worse.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Goodies Company Taster’s Box – September 2013 Box 2

Gimbal's Scottie Dogs Licorice by Gimbal's - I am not a huge licorice fan so I didn't really like these. My coworker loves licorice and noted that this was a bit sweeter than most licorices. 

Thyme by MJM Distributors - I noticed a floral scent on this honey. It was pretty tasty. It was a bit stronger than some other honeys I have had.

Savory Tea by Numi Tea  -  I never had savory tea and this was okay, It reminds me of a broth soup. Surprisingly, it was very strong when left to brew for 5 minutes. Then again, I am not much of a tea person so this can be true of all tea.

Greek Yogurt Chocolate Bar by Abbott Nutrition - These were okay, not my favorite. I wouldn't go out of my way to have them again. I didn't like the awful aftertaste it left in my mouth.
Fuji Apple Chips by Bare Fruit - I have sampled this three times now from Goodies. I get it, you like me having it. MOVE ON and give me something else.

Sun by Kashi - These were absolutely delicious and the whole bag was around 110 calories.  The chickpea chips were filling and enough flavor and taste. The next time I am in the supermarket I am going to stock up on these. This was the only thing making this box not a complete failure. 
Lemon by Nestle Pure Life - I was super disappointed to see this in the box. I mean this is very common and not very exciting. The water itself was okay, but I usually don't like lemon in my water only once in awhile.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Urban Decay Deluxe Shadow Box

A close up of the front

A close up of the images on the mirror

A close up of the felt back
I was in the market for some new makeup for my birthday trip and I came across this and had to try it. I was supposed to save it to actually use on my trip but I couldn't pass up on it! The palette included  Fishnet, Honey, Ransom, Graffiti, Zero, Peace, Shag, Scratch, and Underground eyeshadow with a deluxe Urban Decay Primer Potion. The colors are shimmery and can be used for both day and night as there is an even mix of nice "loud" colors and subtle ones. The eyeshadow is shimmery and nicely pigmented. I did notice you really did have to use a heavy hand to get the color deposited into my lids. I didn't use the sponges provided since I usually I have tons of brushes [but I honestly only use one or two].

Fishnet -  a duo chrome color of fuchsia and purple
Graffiti  - a shimmery Kelly green
Shag -  a metallic coppery color
Honey - reminds me of a rich honey color  [haha!] its like an old gold metallic color
Zero -  a charcoal goal with hint of silver glitter [I can't really tell it is super tiny...]
Scratch - reminds me of Stila's Kitten. It is a soft wash of rose gold
Ransom - a blue with purple highlights
Peace - a teal blue. It reminds me of the water in some nice beachy island.
Underground - a slight wash of taupe/brown