Please vote for Bohemian Gemstone Shoot with DIY Elements!

We need your vote! I would be so honored if you could take a moment to vote for our shoot. Thanks for all your love and support!

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Photography: Paula Bartosiewicz Photography

Shoot Coordination: Lovebuggs Weddings

Florals: Wild Green Yonder

Hair: Leah Starin

Makeup: Jackie Davidson 

Model: Addie Beachley

Table Props: A Daily Something


Skincare Debate: Science Vs. Nature

I thoroughly enjoyed watching this debate with super-blogger and beauty skincare extraordinaire, Caroline Hirons, who mediates an informative discussion about the positives and limitations of natural skincare versus using “high-tech” skincare products.  If you’re  a science nerd like me, or just like learning more about how skincare works, grab a snack for this 30 minute discussion.  Hope you enjoy!


How I Treat My Keratosis Pilaris

I wanted to write this post, because I know there are some of you out there who may have Keratosis Pilaris, including myself, so I thought I’d share what I’ve been doing lately to help keep it at bay.

For those who are not familiar with Keratosis Pilaris, (KP), also known as “Chicken skin”–which to me is the GROSSEST way to describe KP, but there you go–it’s a common hereditary skin condition where small, rough bumps (sometimes red), appear on the arms, legs, and butt.   In fact, 40-50% of people have some sort of Keratosis Pilaris.  That’s ALOT of people!!  Sorry ladies, we are more prone to this condition than men.  We just can’t catch a break can we?  C’est la vie.

The cause of the small, rough bumps is when the body produces an excess of keratin.  Keratin protein is a substantial part of your hair and nails.  However, excess keratin  can get trapped around the hair follicles and pores of your skin (usually arms, legs, or where ever), thus forming hard, rough bumps on the skin.  Gross right?  Fortunately, KP is quite harmless, but I can understand how it can be somewhat “unsightly” and embarrassing to have these rough patches visible on your skin, especially during the summer time when you want to wear those cute shorts with that fabulous top you bought on clearance!

I’ve had KP since I was in elementary school.  It’s never really bothered me and I’ve never been self-conscious about it, but I did wonder if I could do anything about it.  Here is what has worked for me so far:

1. Exfoliate arms and legs (or where ever you may have KP) 2X a week

2. Apply Cocoa butter after exfoliation AND every night you don’t exfoliate as well

I like to exfoliate with LUSH’s Ocean Sea Salt scrub on my arms and legs while I shower.  I really enjoy the smell of this scrub too. It reminds me of a margarita. 🙂

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Then once I get out of the shower, I apply The Body Shop’s Cocoa Butter Body Butter (well that’s fun to say) on my arms and legs as well.

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You can use any body scrub and cocoa butter for that matter, but these are just the things I use.  Within one week of doing this, my bumps have noticeably reduced and my skin has felt smoother.  I still have “scarring” from the bumps, but I’m hoping the cocoa butter can help reduce the appearance of them.  (I know it’s been around forever, but I love Cocoa Butter! Whoever thought to put that stuff on your skin was GENIUS!) The Body Shop’s cocoa butter smells so so good!  I’m not one who gravitates towards sweet smells for my skin, but I just smell like home baked brownies straight out of the oven when I put this on. 🙂

If you’re not too keen on the smell of cocoa butter, you can try using a body cream without it, like shea butter or Vitamin E.  You just want something that will help condition your skin well after exfoliating.

Hope this helps!

November Makeup Favs

I hope you all had a wonderful wonderful Thanksgiving!  I know I ate a lot.  Doing p90x after Thanksgiving is HARD! (But made it to month 2, woop woop!)

Now that we are OFFICIALLY in the Christmas season (shame on you who played Christmas music before Thanksgiving, tsk tsk), I thought I’d share with you what makeup I have been loving this holiday season!  If you don’t know this already about me, I absolutely love fall and winter.  I love the cold.  I could never live in a place where the seasons don’t change.  I just couldn’t.  With the changing seasons, I also like to change up my makeup looks.

I’ve been experimenting a lot with color and “on trend” colors this year and here are my favorites!:

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Top from L to R: Devotee (highlighter), Mistinguette, Goulue
Bottom from L to R: Laguna (bronzer), Orgasm, Deep Throat

1. Limited Edition NARS blush palette inspired by Guy Bourdin “One Night Stand”

Oh my word you guys.  This is my first time ever owning anything NARS and I freakin’ LOVE this palette.  It’s got the beauty cult blushes: “Orgasm” and “Deep Throat” and the very much loved “Laguna” bronzer.  (Yes, I know, NARS always have funny labels to their makeup).  I definitely gravitate more towards “Deep Throat” (bottom right hand corner).  What a perfect color for the colder fall/winter days.  Some say this is a peach color, but I just don’t see it.  It’s the darkest blush in the palette and I’d describe more as a rosey reddish color with shimmer.  GAH! It’s beautiful. Trust me.  I wanted to swatch it for you all here in this post, but the camera wasn’t picking up the true color of the swatch so I gave up.   Overall, this palette is beautiful! I love the highlighter as well. The consistencies of all of these are velvety smooth which make it a dream to blend AND don’t be afraid to mix colors to get a nice blush shade you desire.   This palette is a bit of a splurge, but maybe you can add it to your Christmas list this year, or if you’re feeling extra giving, this would make a fabulous Christmas present for your girlfriend, sister, whoever. 🙂

2. Starlooks eye pencil in “Amethyst”image (10)

This eye pencil was actually in my Ipsy bag!  In the picture above, you can kind of see a purple hue.  I’ve put this in the waterline and I love the pretty sparkle/shimmer it gives my eyes.   The purple/lavender color appears more silver in the waterline, but it glides pretty smoothly.  I tend to have watery eyes when I try to apply any liner to my waterline so I had to quickly “dry” my waterline with a Q-tip and then apply this eye pencil.  Great for a night out and certainly festive especially around the holidays!

3. BH Cosmetic Creme Luxe Lipstick in “Berry Bite”photo (3)

BH Cosmetics is an affordable makeup line that really does create QUALITY makeup.  So if you’re just getting into makeup or you know someone who is and would like to get her something that doesn’t burn a hole in your wallet, I highly recommend checking out BH Cosmetics.  I bought this lipstick on sale for $3.00! Oh yes, friends, $3.00!! I also bought 3 other colors but this one lipstick is a favorite for this time of year. 😀

Berry Bite is a deep, rich, red color.  Red lips are always in fashion and I just love a nice bold red lip.  I don’t rock it as much as I’d like to though.  For $3.00, this lipstick is very smooth and creamy that glides on your lips like butta.  I apologize for the picture above.  I kind of just slapped this on my lips without any liner or anything, I just wanted to give a swatch for you all to see.

4. Milani lipstick in “21 Sangria”image (11)

If you like to watch youtube videos about makeup and fashion like I do,  you’d know that this was in a haul video from Ingrid aka “missglamorazzi.”  (*Side rant* I love Ingrid.  She is so adorable and I would love to meet her one day.)  I’ve been on the hunt to find a perfect berry/wine color lipstick and Ingrid just so happened to feature this in one of her latest haul videos.  (I should also say, watching hauls on youtube is also dangerous because I want to go out and buy everything these beauty gurus recommend.)  And well…..that’s just what I did.  After watching, I headed straight to CVS to see if I could find the Milani lipstick Ingrid was eager to try out.  And indeed I did find it!

The picture above makes this lipstick look a little “muddy” on the lips, but I swear it is a deep berry/wine color.  One thing I’m not too keen on with this lipstick though is the formula.  It’s a bit drying on the lips and is not as creamy at the Berry Bite lipstick above.  I’d recommend applying a lip balm before application.  I do like that it is more of a matte finish (which I love, personally. I’m not really into high gloss finishes).  It can tend to feel a bit drying on the lips as well so I’d definitely recommend a balm underneath and definitely, DEFINITELY exfoliate your lips before putting this lipstick on.  It tends to sink into the “cracks” of your lips and makes them stand out.  Not a cute look.

So that is it for my favorite makeup for November!  Hope you enjoyed! Stay warm and hope you all really get in the Christmas spirit this year!  I love Christmas!!!!

What are your favorite holiday makeup looks this year?

Ya gotta little somethin’ there….

This post is one of those facepalm posts where you look back at a picture of yourself that your friend tagged you in on Facebook, and you just say to yourself, “how could I be such a rookie.”  Yup.  Been there.   I’m talking about that ashy, white cast that blazes right back at you in pictures.

Some of you still may be reading this and asking yourself, what the heck is she talking about?  What I’m referring to is the setting powder you use to manage any oiliness or shine on your face, or to simply set your foundation and/or concealer.  Let me demonstrate, Exhibit A:

ghostfaceThat’s me!  This glorious picture was taken earlier this year at my birthday dinner celebrated with my twin and close friends.  You might see the prominent white ash (haha) underneath my eyes there.  That ladies, is sometimes referred to as the “ghost face”, “white cast”, “ashy” etc. etc.  You can’t see it in real life, but in flash photography, it’s all there. Oh, it’s there.

You may have even seen this on the rich and famous like Nicole Kidman, Eva Longoria, and Uma Thurman.  A beauty mishap that can easily be minimized.

As I did my makeup for my birthday dinner, I set my concealer with Makeup Forever’s HD powder.  It was what I had on hand at the time, and didn’t think that flash photography would be used that night. C’est la vie.  For the record, this is not a post bashing Makeup Forever’s HD powder.  I think it’s an amazing product, I just failed to use it properly, hence the white cast on my face.  My mistake was that I used TOO MUCH of the product and just packed it under my eyes willy-nilly.

This HD powder is silica-based.  Another word for silica is silicon dioxide.  The reason for the “white cast” is because silicon dioxide has light-diffusing properties.  When light hits this silica powder, the light is not absorbed, but rather bounces back, giving off a white cast.

Moral of the story, if your setting powder has any light refractive ingredients such as silicon dioxide, titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, or SPF in general, I would try and stay clear of these IF you know there will be flash photography during your night out.  Personally, I love Mineral Veil by Bare Minerals to set my concealer and foundation, and even though it does have titanium dioxide, I don’t find it leaving a harsh white cast when flash photography is involved.  Also note, that a little goes a long way! Don’t look like a ghost for your holiday gatherings this season! That would be sad. 😦  Hope this helps!

Makeup On-the-Go! (My Essentials)

We’ve all had those days where we hit the snooze button one too many times only to realize we are already behind on the day!  You quickly jump out of bed, get dressed, try to tame the lion’s mane as you casually throw it up into a “chic” messy bun, slap on some deodorant, give your teeth a good scrub (maybe pop some breath mints or gum afterwards….hey, whatever helps), and you’re out the door!

As you’re driving in your car, you take a peek at your visor’s mirror only to be taken aback by the inconvenient blemish that strategically popped up overnight in the most noticeable area on your face and is the size of Mount Everest!, or those tired eyes with the complementary dark circles that explains the numerous hits on your snooze button this morning.  Whatever it may be, here are my 5 essentials I always, always, allllways keep with me in my little, handy dandy makeup bag.

1. Concealer

2. Under-eye Roller (for puffiness)

3. Mascara

4. Lip balm

5. Setting powder

Yup. That’s it.  Now to some, this may be a shock, but even though I am a makeup artist (side job), there are a lot of times–and I mean almost every single weekday–where I never ever put on a lick of makeup (besides lip balm, but does that really count as makeup?).  I work in a lab for my daytime job and to be quite frank, I have no one to impress.  Jeans, t-shirt/hoody and chucks are my staple outfits and I always have my hair thrown in a messy bun 99.9% of the time.  Ah, the perks of working in a lab. 😛

**Rambling moment** The only time I actually put some kind of effort into my face is usually when I see myself and say “Girlfriend needs some help. Let’s get it together now.” That, and on weekends.  Putting on makeup is almost like a “treat” I give myself that I look forward to do on the weekends.  Weird? Welp, not for me. 🙂  Also, I don’t put on makeup everyday because (again, this might be another shocker), I don’t think it’s thaaaaat great for your skin.  But I totally understand if you need to have makeup on because of acne, or for your job or something like that. etc. Okay, end rambling.

What are your makeup essentials you always have on hand?

October Skincare Favorites! Part 2

This post continues my second part of my October Skincare Favorites! Let’s get to it shall we?

8. Hand Cream: Neutrogena Original Hand Cream


This isn’t really a new product out there. It’s Neutrogena’s hand cream. At first, I wasn’t crazy about this product because I didn’t like the gel-like formula, but it’s effectiveness left my hands hydrated and so soft. It instantly grew on me. This is my go-to hand cream that I always have in my handbag. Love, love this handcream!

9. Hand Salve: Burt Bee’s Hand Salve


Another Burt’s Bees product! Look at the burly man on the front! Remember I mentioned having dry eyelids and dry skin underneath my earlobes? I honestly swear by this stuff! One of my eye primers were causing severe dry patches on my delicate eye area and I was trying everything to hydrate them. Aloe vera, coconut oil, vaseline, cocoa butter, intense moisturizing creams. I tried them all! And nothing was working until I read a forum online and some people recommended Burt’s Bees Hand Salve. And FINALLY! An affordable product that worked wonders! Not only did this hand salve completely alleviate my dry eye area, it helped keep my skin soft and hydrated. Even my dry earlobes were cured. AH! I have nothing but praise for this product! Well done Burt’s Bees! Well done.

This product is a salve made up of botanical oils such as olive oil, sunflower seed oil, and various other flower oils. It’s also made with beeswax (naturally, haha). Some people may not care for the smell of this salve if you’re not into herbal aromas such as lavender and rosemary, but I myself quite fancy this scent a lot. I’d rather prefer an herbal scent over a sugary, sweet, candy-smelling scent. It’s so soothing and refreshing to me.

I also wanted to add that my husband loves this hand salve. After a day tinkering in the garage working on his cars, his hands are beat up and dried out. He always reaches for Burt’s Bees Hand Salve to bring back the moisture in his hands. Seeeeeeee, this isn’t just for women! 🙂

10. Morning Facial Cleanser:  Philosophy’s Purity One-Step Facial Cleanser

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I got a sample of this cleanser at Sephora and wanted to try it out. I love how gentle this cleanser is. It doesn’t leave my skin feeling dry or irritated, but makes it feel hydrated and refreshed. I don’t use this facial cleanser every morning, as I don’t really think washing your face everyday is all that great for your skin (at least with my experience), but I’ll use this if I feel like my face is feeling overly oily or just needs a quick pick-me up.

11. Morning/Daytime Facial Moisturizer: Dermalogica “Active Moist”


As you already know, and like many of you out there, cold weather and skin is an ongoing battle. Dry, flaky skin. It’s soooooo annoying and embarrassing to have. I did my own research looking for a good facial moisturizer and came across Dermologica “Active Moist.” Even though I have oily, acne-prone skin with the occasional dry patches, my skin still needs to be moisturized. This moisturizer does the trick. Even though it is a bit pricey, a little goes a long way. Not a huge fan of the smell, but it doesn’t linger for long and the moisturizer itself doesn’t leave my skin greasy with clogged pores. No more dry, flaky patches! Okay, gross.

12. Morning/Daytime Facial Moisturizer with SPF: Olay Complete All Day UV Moisturizer for Sensitive Skin


This may seem over kill on the moisturizer, but I can’t leave the house without my SPF on. After putting on Active Moist, I’ll put on this daily moisturizer. It’s unscented and does the job I need it to do. As we all know, SPF helps to protect your skin from harmful sun rays. And it also helps to reduce wrinkles AND skin cancer.

This concludes my October Skincare Favorites! I hope you all enjoyed it! 🙂