Monday, February 8, 2016

New In & New To Me- Drugstore Beauty Finds

When you go shopping at Ulta and you're not looking for anything, who knows what you'll find. For me it was a complete score a few weeks ago, when I found some beauty goodies that I was excited to try right away! 

Wandering down the aisles, I found "new in" displays for L'Oreal shadows and Maybelline shadow sticks, plus a display of featured NYX lipsticks, so of course I was sucked in. The L'Oreal Color Riche Mono Shadows are something I've seen raved about by UK beauty bloggers for a while now, so I've been itching for them to come to the states. I went for two neutrals that I can get a lot of use out of- a matte, Cafe Au Lait, and a shimmer, Pain Au Chocolat. I love to pop the matte shade in my crease for a bit of definition and the shimmer shade is a great option for a one color, throw-on-and-go shade. The texture of the shadows feels almost like a pressed pigment and it's velvety smooth when you apply it. (Sidenote...every time I see "Cafe Au Lait" I always think of this scene in Gilmore Girls. Every. Time.)
I'd been hearing the hype about the Maybelline Color Tattoo Concentrated Crayons, so after spotting the display for them, I naturally picked up two shades. (I held back- you have no idea how much I wanted to Buy All The Shades!) In the end I went with Bronze Truffle, (since I love the original Bad to the Bronze Color Tattoo so much) and Lavish Lavender (because, well, it's me and I'm a cool-toned purple shadow addict). Oh neeeed these. Not to be an enabler, but they're seriously amazing and I can't stop using them! They go on so ridiculously smoothly and you can blend out the edges with just your fingertip. They can be a sheer wash of color with a quick application or you could definitely build it up to a stronger color. I may go back to get all the colors after all...haha.

NYX has so many serious winners in their lineup, so when I spotted a display for their High Voltage Lipsticks, I was like a moth to a flame. Something about the 90's gray and grungy tone of Stone was calling my name. It turned out to be complete winner (making it's way into my January Favorites!) and I'm really happy I tried it. The formula is so creamy that it glides on with ease. When they say high voltage, they aren't exaggerating- it's completely opaque and pretty true to the tube (it's reading a little rosy on camera, but it's a lovely nude in person). I really want to try some other shades in the line. 

The last little sneaky purchase I grabbed before heading to the register was a Rimmel Exaggerate Liner in Innocent. Just like many other beauty bloggers, I'm already a fan of the East End Snob liner. I hate to say it, but I think I like Innocent even more! The shade is great to wear on it's own, but it's such a nice neutral nude that it's perfect for layering under other lipsticks and glosses. The formula is so long lasting, too. I'll put it on before I go to work in the morning and it's still there through my morning coffee and lunch. What more could I ask for?

I should really aimlessly wander through Ulta more often. It leads to some great finds! (Or maybe I shouldn't since my I Want It list just keeps growing...) Hope you all had a great weekend! 

Monday, February 1, 2016

January Favorites 2016

We're officially one month into 2016 already! Unbelievable. My January consisted of work getting busier, a fun party, and improving at a new sport (more on that later). I've also been getting excited about fashion again and posting more OOTD's on Instagram since I've really been loving some of the pieces that I've picked up recently. The first month of the year also was filled with a lot of great beauty products - from the tried and true, to brand spanking new.

Rimmel Lift Me Up Mascara // I'm really fickle with mascara, so the fact that this is my second tube of this says a lot. I love that it smells like cucumbers (hello, fresh scent!) and it doesn't get clumpy so you can easily build it up. Since I've been using it my lashes have been noticeably stronger, too- I've seen less of them fall out when I wash my face and they seem a little longer than they used to be. It has to be the vitamins in it, 'cuz I have no other explanation for that improvement. It's not the most dramatic mascara, but it's been my go-to for everyday wear.

Whish Almond Body Butter // Winter dry hands seem to be inevitable every year. I found this little travel size body butter in my stash and starting applying it once or twice a day. I wouldn't say it's a long term solution to dry skin, but it does keep my hands feeling softer and moisturized for a solid 12 hours. Plus, the almond scent is sooooo rich and long lasting!

theBalm Instain Blush in Houndstooth // In typical Laura fashion I've been in a rush getting out the door a lot lately and I've found that the best way to quickly give life to my face is with a punch of blush. I love theBalm Instain blushes because of their serious (read: use a light hand!) pigmentation. The staying power of these are incredible too. I've been a fan of the mauve tone of the Houndstooth for a pretty winter flush!

Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeliner in Cosmic (Yeyo is very similar) // Another little trick to looker more fresh-faced and awake when you're running late is adding a really bright highlight to the inner corners of your eyes. My pick lately has been the UD liner in Cosmic. It's a super bright shimmery white that's so quick and easy to pop on as a final touch in the morning. It came in a set that's no longer available, but any white shimmery liner will do the trick. 

NYX High Voltage Lipstick in Stone // I bought this lipstick on a whim while browsing in Ulta a few weeks ago and I'm soooo happy I did! It's one of those 90's-inspired shades that's a nude with a gray undertone. The formula is creamy with a nice opacity to it and the color is an understated neutral that goes with everythaaaang. I feel much cooler than I actually am when I wear it. Can't say enough good things about this lipstick - you need to check it out!

Lush Ultrabland Facial Cleanser // I've officially gotten rid of face wipes. Cut the cord. There's no more in the house anymore as my lazy makeup removing fall-backs. Why? Because I've become a complete Ultrabland addict. I use this balmy cleanser every single night to remove my makeup without fail. It effectively removes it all while still keeps my skin soft and hydrated, which is a huge necessity with dry winter air. I'd highly recommend it!

Snowboarding! // After starting to learn this sport last month I've finally started to get a grasp on some basic skills and slowly started to improve. I'm definitely enjoying trying out a new sport and having something fun to do every weekend (we try to go once a week). If I live in a snowy locale, I might as well make the most of it, right? I do have proof that I am legit snowboarding lol:

Onto February! Hope you all had a great weekend!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Pink Party

As much as I love hanging out in sweatpants, it's always fun to get dressed to the nines and go for full-on fabulous once in a while! As I mentioned in my last post, the company I work for hosts it's annual holiday party in January. The Mr and I usually have a lot of fun with what we wear and this year was no exception. He wore a deep purple tux paired with a navy blue shirt with pink tiny polka dots and a blue plaid bow tie. I found a watermelon pink Kate Spade dress (that was on sale!) and a pair of black suede jeweled pumps from Nine West. I loved the whimsy of the pouf of the skirt and the bow on the back so much! I can't find it online, but there still some similar dresses here and here. (It also wrinkled like crazy and took for-ev-er to steam!) I finished it off with a pair of ear crawlers and lots of bracelets from Forever21, plus a velvet clutch from Target. Prepare yourself for some obligatory bathroom selfies, 'cuz I totally forgot to take any photos before we left. 

I aaaam sitting in pajama pants and a hoodie as I write this, so it's all about that balance...

For my party makeup I thought it was the perfect opportunity to use the intense pink, Totally Fetch from the Too Faced Chocolate Bon Bons palette. I swept Urban Decay's Tonic all over the lid for a lilac base. To make the pink shadow pop as a liner, I used the Nyx lip pencil in Dolly Pink to make wing, then layered Totally Fetch over the top of it. I added the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper starting about mid-way down the wing to add a little more more darkness to the liner. I popped some of Urban Decay's Cosmic Eyeliner (similar) in the inner corners for a shimmery highlight. I loved how fun the pink liner turned out! Who knows when I'll have an excuse for hot pink winged liner again?!

Do you like to have fun with fashion and makeup when you go out or do you stick with a more classic look? I seriously love trying new and different looks that get me out of my comfort zone. It can all be so much fun if you want it to be! Hope you all had a great weekend! I worked Saturday morning and went snowboarding Saturday night. I'm (slowly) improving each time we go, but I'm definitely not a natural athlete, so it's a slow learn for me, but I'm sure I'll get better! 

Monday, January 11, 2016

The bottom lash mascara I swear by

Makeup lovers are known for trying out tons of products looking for that perfect piece. Hard to find in every category, but sometimes you really do discover The One. 

I know I've found a Holy Grail in the Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara. This is exactly what I need and there are several reasons why I'll continue to repurchase it. (On tube number two right now!) The number one deal sealer for me is the wand. The itty-bitty fiber brush finds and grabs all of your lower lashes with a couple of swipes, and does it without getting mascara all over your undereye. That's all a woman wants, really.

A quick single coat is perfect for everyday wear, and you can build it up with a couple of coats for a more dramatic look. It's not waterproof, which makes a lot of sense to me. You really don't want to be scrubbing your more delicate and sparse lower lashes to remove mascara. Even though it's not waterproof, it wears well. I've never had any issues with smudging or flaking. I'm wearing it in the makeup looks below (the first pic is a little more natural, and the last two I have it built up a little more):

All in all, this is one of my top makeup picks and one of the few things that I repurchase when I run out. At $10.50, it's not an outrageous price for a mascara, either. One tube lasts quite a while for me, since you use less for the lower lashes than you would for your upper lashes each day.

Have you ever tried this? What's your favorite mascara for the lower lashes? Thanks to Kay from Shoes and Glitter for requesting this post! If you ever have a request for a post, feel free to leave it in the comments! Hope you all had a great weekend! We spent some of ours shopping for what we needed to complete our outfits for my company's holiday party coming up this Saturday (they have it in January annually). I finally found a pair of shoes to go with my dress, so I'll try to get some pics of our outfits while we're there to share with you! I'm so excited about the dress I found and just have to figure out what to do with my hair and makeup to tie it all together!