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Nails: A French Twist… Imperfect Chevron Tips

Just a quickie today… I have seen this look pop-up recently at a few fashion/style events and am loving it. I say it is a modern take on French tips, but what I really love is that it is super easy, chic, great for Fall/Autumn and doesn’t have to be perfect!

  1. Your favorite base coat.
  2. A single coat of clear or sheer skin-toned polish. 
  3. Grab your favorite Fall nail polish and swipe it across the tips, at your desired angle. 
  4. Top with your favorite top coat!

 

So easy! Warning, you will get nail polish on your fingers, but you can shield the sides with small pieces of tape or just clean up with a q-tip and polish remover.

Pardon the crappy photo quality. 

What’s on my nails:

  1. Essie “all in one base” multi-treatment base coat
  2. Sally Hansen Diamond Strength no chip nail color in “Flawless”
  3. Tip Color: “Status Update” (Birchbox and Color Club® Custom Collection – from the September Birchbox – review coming soon)
  4. Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Anti-Chip Top Coat

 

 

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Keeping your skin hydrated through the seasons…

It is one of the most common questions and complaints I hear… your skin is getting dry, chapped, flaky, taught and irritated as the weather cools down.

The reason this happens is simple, the humidity drop or becomes non-existent. Your skin has to contend with the cool air and wind outside, and the dry air inside. When you’re outdoors/indoors the dry air is actually drawing the moisture out of your skin, attempting to hydrate the environment around you, but luckily there are plenty of ways you can fight off the parched skin feeling.

  • Drink MORE water – Keep your body hydrated from the inside out.
  • Avoid drying cleansers – Opt for cleansers that say cream, oil, gentle, extra moisturizing, hydrating and 24 hour moisture.
  • Switch to a more gentle exfoliant – It is important to exfoliate regularly for healthy skin cell turnover and appearance, and while instinct may tell you to abandon your exfoliant, that would only make skin appear dull, and dead-dry skin more obvious. As always for exfoliation, ensure you follow up with proper moisturization.
  • If you do not already, use an oil before your moisturizer at night – Apply the oil to your body while you are still in the shower or immediately after, without letting your skin dry. The same goes for your face, apply (a non-comedogenic (non-pore clogging) oil) after cleansing to slightly damp skin. Oils help lock in moisture. Follow up with your normal body and face moisturizers.
  • Cool down your shower – I know, I know, who doesn’t love a hot shower in the Fall/Winter, but long showers in hot water are a serious no-no for your skin. The hot water, especially for extended periods of time, breaks down the lipid barrier in your skin – meaning it is damaging the fatty-moisture layer in your skin. Take a shorter warm shower and be sure to follow up with proper moisturization.
  • Continue to apply SPF Moisturizer- Enough said. It does not matter that the sun is hiding behind the overcast or snow clouds.
  • Embrace the scarf (and gloves) – They are fashionable and protect your skin from the cool wind.
  • Consider adding a humidifier – As stated before, the humidity (moisture in the air outside and) indoors has dropped, so investing in a humidifier helps put that moisture back into the air.
  • Switch to a thicker/heavier moisturizer – Try a body butter or cream, as opposed to lotion. If your face can handle a heavier non-comedogenic moisturizer, definitely try one. If it can’t, boost your current face moisturizer with a serum or oil.
  • Use primer day AND night – Yes, as in foundation primer. It works great in cooler months too – not just when you want to avoid your make-up melting off. Using an oil-free foundation primer during the day adds a barrier sealing in the moisture in your skin from the cool air and wind outside. Using the primer at night, after cleansing and apply your facial oil/moisturizer, adds a barrier sealing in the moisture and products, from the dry air indoors.
  • Use a nail treatment – Just as with your skin, your nails also have it rough in the cooler months. Use a nail oil, or vaseline, and a strengthening nail protein polish treatment or base coat.
  • Pamper your feet – After your shower, apply a foot cream and your favorite socks, to keep your feet hydrated and soft.
  • Find your Super Lip Balm – Enough said. Oh – lips need to be exfoliated too! Avoid licking your lips, the enzymes in your saliva that are used to breakdown food will only dry your lips more.
  • Ditch products with alcohol – This should be done year around in my opinion. Opt for alcohol-free toners, treatments and cleansers.
  • Bring out the foundation – No need to stick to the lightweight tinted moisturizer, unless you really want to. As always, allow your moisturizer to sink in for a few minutes and add a primer for more skin protection.
  • Mist throughout the day – Try facial mists like MAC Fix + or Evian Spray Brumisateur Mineral Water. Spray throughout the day, it feels good and gives your skin a mini moisture boost.


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Beauty 101: Bold Lips

As we are quickly approaching September, and with it Autum/Fall and then of course Winter, it’s the time of year where bold lips tend to start popping up.

I feel this may be because many women think these seasons are easier to get a away with a bold lip, or that cooler weather gives a chance to not only layer up and accessorize your outfits, but also your makeup. Plus, there is that whole issue of not having to worry about your bold lip melting away in the summer heat.

Personally, I wear a bold lip whenever I want – no matter the season, with the only thing changing maybe the technique of application and the shade I choose.

So, first things first, you CAN wear red lipstick – no matter your skin tone, undertone – AND you can wear both COOL and WARM based reds. The key is to choosing the right shade for your LIPS and having the confidence! BOLD LIPS both inspire and require confidence.

When in doubt choose a cool toned (blue based) true red – this color flatters most. Bonus: Cool toned reds counteract any yellowness in your teeth. Warning: Some warm toned reds can enhance the yellow in teeth.

The only people I would say should avoid bold lip color would be those with very thin lips. Remember that you are drawing major attention to your mouth, so if your lips are quite thin, you will only be accentuating how thin they are. I would recommend that you draw attention to a more prominent feature, maybe your eyes or bone structure, choosing a nude/natural color for your lip.

Another group of people that should be wary of a bold lip are those with quite noticeable asymmetrical lips. Again, the bold color will only accentuate this, though, you can attempt to even out your lips (long-wearing liner is a must) – but this will require a conscious mind throughout the day/night while wearing your bold lips.

I grabbed this photo line up courtesy of The Beauty Department. SEE? Everyone can wear COOL and WARM lips!

PORCELAIN: This ultra-light skin tone with cool undertones looks best with a cool red with hints of plum, but looks daring with a warm red.

FAIR: This light skin tone with cool undertones also is most harmonious with a cool red, while a warm red is bold.

BISQUE: This pink under-toned skin color looks best with a cool red, but can also pull off the warm red.

BEIGE: This skin color with yellow undertones is most harmonious with a warm red, but can wear a cool red too.

OLIVE: Warm reds look best on this skin color with green undertones, but as you can see, cool reds look pretty too.

TAWNY: Again, warm reds are the way to go for this gorgeous skin tone, but don’t let anyone tell you you can’t wear cool reds too.

CARAMEL: Cool reds are wearable but warm reds are gorgeous on this skin tone.

ALMOND: Warm reds are pretty but cool reds are meant for you.

My Ultimate Application for Long Lasting Bold Lips:

  1. PRIME – Prior to applying any make-up, apply a thin layer of lip primer (or a non-tacky, completely transparent, non-greasy lip balm or eye cream), at the same time as your moisturizer.  Ever-s0-slightly OVER-LINE your natural lip line with the primer – this will prevent the lips color from bleeding outside your your natural lip line. Let your lips be the last step in your make-up.
  2. BLOT – When your other make-up/hair is finished, grab a tissue and blot your lips once. This will absorb and unnecessary primer left on your lips.
  3. LINER – Now this can be optional, but it is recommended for a long-lasting bold lip. With a light grip and stroke, line your natural lip line with a lip liner in a shade as close to your lipstick color as possible, unless you are looking to create more dimension with two lip liners one darker and one lighter (perhaps I should do another quick post on this topic?). Then FILL IN your lips with the pencil. Look for a long-wearing 24/7 lip line if possible. Why? This way as your lipstick wears away when your eating/drinking/talking, the color of the liner is still in place – or should be – and you won’t have to worry about so many touch-ups. TIP: Take a step back and look at your lips to ensure your lip shape is accurate and what you want.
  4. APPLY – Using a lip bush, if possible, apply a layer of your desired lipstick shade over your liner. A lip brush ensures precision and precision is key with such a bold lip.
  5. BLOT – Take a tissue and blot your lips once.
  6. APPLY AGAIN – Apply a second layer of  your lip color and you are almost done!
  7. USE A FINGER – Okay – that sounded a bit dirty, but still, take your finger into the center of your lips/mouth and lightly close your lips around. Pull your finger out, this trick known by many, ensures that bit of lipstick at the inside center of your lips doesn’t end up on your teeth.
  8. BALANCE CHECK – When wearing bold lips, remember that you need to balance your face with your other make-up. Lightly define your brows, if needed. Add a coat of mascara and a bit of color to your cheeks.

EXTRAS:

  • GLOSS – If you want a bit of shine after the above steps. Add a dab of gloss in the same shade or a shade lighter to the center of the lip and press (don’t smush or slide) your lips together lightly and few times to distribute.
  • MATTE – If your lipstick is not matte but you want a matte lip, after the above steps, take a small flat eye shadow brush and dip it into an eye shadow or blush the color of your lipstick or a shade lighter. Then most importantly tap off the excess and press the brush to your lips, but not quite to the edge. Should you need to apply more powder, use a clean brush or the other side of the flat brush you used. You do not want to get lipstick in your eye shadow/blush.

Things to Remember:

  1. You can always break into the bold lip look/trend with a sheer gloss or balm, before jumping into lipstick. Gloss and balm are more forgiving. You can also blot a sheer application of lipstick, rather than applying a full layer of the color, and it can act as more of a stain.
  2. The same bold color can look dramatically different from day to night.
  3. Again, CHEEK BALANCE is important. A bold lip with bare cheeks can wash you out.
  4. EXFOLIATE your lips with a warm and slightly damp wash cloth and sugar prior to applying anything. A bold lip will draw attention to you and you don’t want that attention being on crusty, chapped and dried out lips.

Finally, have fun and get ready to be noticed!! xoxo


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D.I.Y. Hanging Bra Organizer :)

Update: Thank you so much for all the great praise and feedback on my DIY Bra Organizer! I really appreciate it, truly. I’ve heard from so many new followers through this post and am so happy so many of you have found it useful. Whether you found it through Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Stumble Upon, or another website or blog, please credit and link back where appropriate. Thank you!!

I am BACK!!! Yupp… it has been a while – a long while it seems – I missed blogging, but I had real life issues to sort out and just could not find the time to dedicate to the blogosphere.

Anyways, I am back with a quick (and cheap) D.I.Y. for keeping those bras you love organized and in shape – after all, you spent the money on them – and most bras do not come cheap – so you want them to last as long as possible!

When it comes to bras with molded cups, there are a few rules for properly caring for and storing them to ensure they last a good while. 

  1. NEVER throw your bras, molded cups or not, in the washer – always hand-wash them with care.  (Exception to this rule: No-wire, non-molded sports/yoga bras)
  2. NEVER fold your molded bras in half, forcing you to invert one of the cups into the other – this will alter/ruin the shape of the cups – sometimes causing permanent “dents” in the tip of one cup! Squished nipple alert! Have you ever seen a woman walking around and something looks just a little off in the tit area – well yeah, maybe she stores her bras incorrectly – eeek! (You can fold your non-molded bras in half with no worries)
  3. AVOID throwing your molded cup bras into that chaotic panty drawer – same dangers for those cups as rule 2.
  4. HANG bras or ORGANIZE them in a drawer properly – and when I say properly, I mean the way you see them in the lingerie stores drawers – like Victoria’s Secret – never folded in half or in a messy pile. You can also purchase bra drawer organizers, which included actual dividers.

Personally, I prefer to hang my bras – and recently, I had been looking at an easy way I can hang them all together, without having to buy something specifically for that purpose, so here is what I came up with – and I love it – it really is the perfect solution for me, so maybe it will work out for you too!

What you will need:

Wooden hangers – class it up a bit – I got 2 packs of 5 wooden hangers ($4 each) – make sure the shirt hangers you choose have grooves for straps.

Screw Eyes or Hooks – I opted for hooks ($2 total) , since they were out of screw eyes that were long enough (you want at least a 2 inch drop length).

Optional: Pliers – to close the screw hooks – essentially making screw eyes.

and of course BRAS!

STEP 1:

Grab your screw eye/hook and a hanger.

STEP 2:

Screw the eye/hook into the center/joint of the wooden hanger – it will take very little effort!

STEP 3:

Using the pliers, close the screw hook – creating a screw eye.

Do the previous steps for each of the hangers, with the exception of the last one.

STEP 4: 

Hook each hanger onto another and add your bras! TA DA!

Now, I am not shy about having my bras out – they are pretty – so I have mine hung on the back of  my door – plus they are now organized to perfection!

You can also double up on each hanger (bras can be placed back to back like this > d|b < bra – hanger – bra), if you are hanging yours in your closet or open space.

I now have an easy bra organizer – for up to 20 bras! All for $10 🙂

HAPPY ORGANIZING!