Sequin Gowns & Mermaid Crowns : 2015

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Stress Free Holiday


Hey, what's up, HELLO!

I realize it's been a significant amount of time since I've posted last, and for that I apologize.  As I'm sure you all understand, the past few weeks have been insanely busy for me and I'm just now getting around to blog!  So I thought, what better to write about than how to stay stress free during this beautiful, yet equally chaotic time of year!

I say stress free, however I know that is probably the unattainable ideal.  So we'll aim for that, but probably land somewhere around kind of a little stressed.  In our society today, everyone is busy all the damn time.  But during the holidays, our lists grow longer, our planners get fuller, and our blood pressure gets higher.  So I find it extremely important to notice when you're starting to lose it, sit down, reevaluate yourself and make a game plan.

1. Lists, Lists, Lists



I love lists.  They help me keep things organized and give me somewhere to get everything out and not completely forget about it.  It's like, all the things I have to do are swirling around in my head and driving me insane, until I write them down. Then, it's as if they magically flow from my head to the paper and stay there.  Lists keep me sane.  And I have lots of them. Recently I find myself making lists of things to add to lists, and lists of lists to make.  It's like listception.  But in all honesty, there is nothing more satisfying than crossing those things off your lists.  Imagine you're covered in leeches and every time you do something, you get to peel one off.  Not the most pleasing analogy I could have concocted, but I never claimed to be completely sane today.  But I digress.  Lists are awesome things and you should make lots of them to keep your thoughts organized and all in one spot.

2. Keep that Planner Handy!


Oh, planner.  I don't know what I'd do without you. My friend lovingly mocks me and my planner, asking me if it's still 1995, but my phone calendar just doesn't do it for me.  I need to physically write everything down.  And I can't put stickers in my iPhone calendar.  Duh.  But really, having a planner is way easier to organize your plans, because you can not only write down events/appointments but also reminders and little notes that you need to see during that time.  It also makes planning more fun!  Since it can be stressful, I personally enjoy flipping through Lilly Pulitzer prints and cute little stickers instead of suffering through the clinical nature of the calendar and reminder apps.  Blah.

So why keep it handy?  These past couple of weeks my planner is FULL like it's never been before. I'm at the point where I literally cannot remember everything in it, so I need to have it on my person or make my mom send my pictures of the pages. Yes that happened.  So just make sure you have it when you know you're gonna need it.  Or be like me and speak in 90's jargon: "I don't know, I have to check my planner."

3. Don't Overbook


This is a good tip for the holidays and just for life in general.  But I find during this time of year I want to see everyone I've ever met, go to 10 different parties, and do 8 million other things.  Not to mention things that just come up.  This is physically impossible and you need to realize it before you screw up.  I did not realize this and I unfortunately wound up cancelling something that was pretty important to me.  Not only did I disappoint my friend, but I felt horrible and had to put a marble in the flake jar.  Womp, womp.  Alas, I did this for my mental health.  I had been go go go and needed to stop stop stop. Sometimes you just "literally can not" and that's ok!  We are human, we can't be a million places at once, and sometimes you have to say no.

4. Get Started Early


When it comes to planning and shopping, I always try to start early.  This allows me to get as organized as possible before chaos ensues.  This is my game plan.  I personally like to make a gift list of who I have to buy for, get in touch with people I want to hang out with and make plans, things of that nature.  Make any appointments that take first priority so you don't wind up having to cancel plans with your bestie because you have to go see your gyno.  No one wants to do that.  Get all of your top priority, static plans in that planner first thing, including your work schedule.  Then you have the freedom to say, "OH! I'm off Tuesday, let's spend the day!" Instead of saying that and then realizing that in fact you are not off and have to cancel.  I'm getting anxious just thinking about it. Which is why getting your duckies in a row early on is super important!

5. Don't Forget You!


Like I said before, keep your health at top of mind!  You won't be any fun at that holiday party if you can't keep your eyes open because you haven't slept in 2 days.  So make sure you plan/leave open time to relax and treat yo' self!  Do things to relax you like watch your tv shows, take a long bath, meditate, spend time with "bae", whatever makes you happy and zen. The goal is to stay happy and healthy so you can fully enjoy all of those things you have planned!  Even better: make it a part of your plan!  Like, me and my best friend are going to have a spa day at my house, with mimosas and manicures. Perfection.  Maybe even get some super special bath bombs (click the photo!) or make your own (um, Pinterest?). Case in point, the holidays are mainly about giving and spending time with your loved ones, but it's about you too!  Don't forget that!

Hope this helps you have a less stressed couple weeks!  Happy Holidays!

XO, Briana

I used this post to show off some of the cool stock photos I've been collecting, a funny yet true saying, and some really rad bath bombs from Etsy! None of the pictures are mine, yet they have all been linked to their original sources!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Small Business Love

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!  Which means it's time to get on shopping!  I've spent a lot of time deciding what I want to buy this year and where.  My initial rule was that I would stay far away from Black Friday shopping and try to get most of my things online.  However, I also find it difficult to find things that are unique and thoughtful on websites like Amazon or the like.  So this year I realized that I could wonderfully combine my hatred of crowds and my love for the crafters and makers of the world by shopping small!

I think it's really important for us, the consumer, to support the up and coming entrepreneurs.  They are the next big thing and deserve just as much attention, if not more, as the money moguls. I love buying things from people I feel like I know.  Each and every maker has a story and having things designed, handcrafted, and packaged all by that same beautiful and talented person is humbling and truly life enriching.  Plus, there are so many small businesses and people who are making beautiful things by hand that you could get a different, meaningful gift for everyone you know!  So I've compiled a short list of gift ideas from some of my favorite online small businesses!

Wingostarr Jewelry



I've been following this lovely artist on Instagram for a while now and I've been eyeing this piece myself!  Self taught jewelry designer Mallory Wingo runs the Wingostarr shop on Etsy and sells tons of beautiful jewelry, including several one of a kind pieces!  I love that she uses all kinds of gems and crystals as well as inspirational sayings!




By now ya'll know I'm a sucker for anything made in Hawaii.  Hana Maui Creations is just one of three shops I've included on my list!  These talented mother-daughter team hand make all kinds of pretty, island inspired jewelry.  I have the wave ring in silver that I wear every day!  I feel totally naked without it. Definitely vital to a mermaid's jewelry box!  


Cyber Monday Sale: Use code CYBER15 for 15% Off!


Salty Kisses Hawaii


How cute are these hammered saying bracelets from Salty Kisses Hawaii?!  I kind of want them all to wear just like this! You can choose silver or bronze and any saying you like! Or you can pick from the ones in the photo! These make a great gift that can be easily personalized.  All of the jewelry is "handmade with aloha" by Jennifer Tigley.  She also makes some really rad personalized wire name necklaces!


Small Business Saturday Sale: Use code SHPSML30 for 30% Off!

Simply Jessica Marie

Bet you didn't think of some super cute personalized stationery to gift for Christmas.  Now your bestie can write you letters in style!!  Simply Jessica Marie sells a variety of stationary, stamps, and other fun paper products!  Jessica Marie Clinch is a watercolor artist who thrives on inspiring her customers with feminine, creative products!  I will be adding one of the custom address stamps to my own Christmas list!



This chic little shop has so many great things to offer!  From cute quoted mugs to catchy graphic tees, I'd be happy with any of these under my Christmas tree!  Or in any wrapped package for that matter. The Trendy Sparrow, based in Chicago, touches on so many wonderful things like fashion, coffee, blogging, and brunching.  These are a few of my favorite things. Lindzi Shanks perfectly depicts her girl: "The Trendy Sparrow girl sips champagne any day of the week.  She enjoys eating macarons for breakfast.  She feels just as beautiful in sweats as she does in a party dress.  She dreams of Paris and wears lots of polka dots.  She loves fresh flowers and every Audrey Hepburn movie.  She works hard for what she has and looks fabulous doing it.  She is beautiful inside and out."  Seems like someone I wanna be and/or wanna be friends with, if you ask me.


Cyber Monday Sale: Use code CYBERMONDAY for 25% Off!




Another shop based in Hawaii.  Another shop I continuously stalk on Instagram. I finally was able to purchase one of the Lil Coconut Hawaii clutches that I'm currently anxiously awaiting in the mail.  I actually have mentioned the shop before in my Clinging to Summer Wish List post last fall! So basically, I'm saying I love this brand created by Maui native Amanda Dela Cruz.  All of her clutches are her own photos taken on her own island adventures, which I feel makes these so special!  


Cyber Monday Sale: Use code CYBER for 30% Off!

Molly Kay Coakley


Last, but certainly not least, is a personal friend and co-worker of mine who is super creative and talented! Native New Yorker and a Myrtle Beach transplant, Molly makes these incredible custom nail art designs!  I don't know how she does it, because I simply would not have the patience it requires.  I always give her oodles of kudos.  Not only do these make stunning artwork for the home, but also a great gift! Love you girlfriend! ;)


XO, Briana

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

HASK Argan Oil Repairing Hair Care Collection


I was lucky enough to be chosen to review the HASK Argan Oil Repairing Hair Care Collection!  The set arrived in a cute little drawstring bag that really made me smile! In the bag were four pieces: the Argan Oil Repairing Shampoo & Conditioner, Argan Oil Repairing Deep Conditioner, and the Argan Oil Shine Treatment.

I first started off using the shampoo and conditioner for a few days.  I honestly couldn't believe how great my hair looked!  After just a couple of uses, my hair was super smooth, shiny, soft and my waves were very defined and not frizzy! Overall it felt and looked super healthy, even though I know for a fact at that time it was not.  It also smells fantastic, like oranges and happiness.  That's the only way I can think to describe it, haha!


The only thing I found odd was that it seemed to brighten my hair.  Normally I would be all for that, but since my hair was dyed blonde at the time, I was worried it would lighten it too much.  I actually decided that I was now Princess Anna of Arendelle because I had one piece that was almost white, lol.  But I decided it was worth it for the awesome effect of the set. However, after getting a darker dye job, I'd been hesitant to start using it again for fear of it stripping my color.

I'd like to note that I did NOT use any additional products in my hair.  It is au natural!

After deciding to try the set again, I'm happy I did.  I used the shampoo, conditioner, and the deep conditioner in the shower.  I also used the oil in my hair after being towel dried and let my hair completely dry over night, as I usually do.


I will say in using the additional products, my hair came out even more amazing!  It was super shiny, barely any frizz (can't ask for none when I'm sleeping on it lol), and my waves were even more defined than before!  And even though I'm pretty sure it wound up lightening my bit of blonde still in my hair, I would continue to use this only every once in a while when my hair needs some refreshing!


Overall, this is a great collection of products that I would 100% recommend!  I love the way it works, and how it makes my hair look, feel, and smell!  Also, I appreciate that it is free of all sulfates, parabens, phthalates, gluten, drying alcohol, and artificial colors.  It's easy to use with clear directions on the packaging and is fantastic for when your hair really needs a boost!  As I said, I'd plan to use this only when I feel like my hair needs repairing, just to make sure my color doesn't fade.  But if your hair is not color treated, use it as often as you like!  It's a great product that will become an integral part of my hair care routine!  Much thanks to HASK and BrandBacker for allowing me to try it out!!

Follow the link for more information on the HASK Argan Oil Repairing Hair Care Collection, or check out HASK's other hair care collections, on their main website HERE!


XO, Briana
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Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Curel Itch Defense

Every year when the weather starts to change, so does my skin.  With falling leaves and cool breezes comes cracked hands and itchy skin.  Blah!  I also suffer from eczema, which always flares up when the weather gets cool.  That's why I'm always on the hunt for lotions and creams to dull the excessive itch and sooth the dry patches.  So when the opportunity came up to try the Curel Itch Defense Body Wash & Spray Lotion, I was hopeful that I would find my new favorite. Boy was I right!



Courtesy of Influenster, I received a sample size of the Curel Itch Defense Body Wash and a full size of the Curel Itch Defense Instant Soothing Moisturizing Spray, as well as a coupon that I fully intend to use.  Now on to why I love it.

There is a lot to love about these products.  They are both all around fantastic.  But together they are perfection.  Starting off with the body wash is the key to getting rid of the itch.  I used the two together until every drop of that body wash was gone.  And then I went to buy more.  The body wash is like the first layer of defense, moisturizing your skin in the shower and prepping it for phase two.  I also found that the body wash is easier to get all over your body, like in hard to reach places like your back, making sure that every where is getting some love, even if you can reach it with your lotion.



Once you've lathered up and patted yourself dry it's time to apply your moisturizer.  I found this spray to be about 10x easier to apply than regular lotion.  It takes a very short time to just spray it on and rub it in, then you're done! And it smells really good! If you like the eucalyptus type scent, which I do. It was easy to get into a routine because it took such little effort.  All I had to do was use the body wash in the shower and quickly put on the lotion right after! The results were pretty amazing.


After using both products for just 3 days, I was already seeing a difference in my skin.  Right before I received these, I had a pretty bad eczema flare up on my leg.  After the 3 days, it was almost completely gone.  This is something that even a steroid cream failed to clear up.  After a few more days it was completely gone and has not returned!! I've been using it religiously and I can say that I haven't had any more eczema flare ups!  Which is awesome because they are horrible and extremely uncomfortable!

So I think I've met my new best friend for this winter.  I plan on stocking up and using it until further notice.  So much thanks to Influenster and Curel for allowing me to review such a life changing product!  I've created a Pinterest board for these products and things related that you can check out HERE!  And if you haven't seen it, here's my little demo video for the spray lotion!



As is probably apparent, I would totally recommend this product; to anyone who suffers from dry skin and/or eczema especially!  It's truly a miracle worker in my eyes! Let me know your thoughts if you try it, or tel me about your go to winter skin saver!
XO, Briana

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Working Out with Evian Facial Spray

I've been wanting to try this for a while and finally this summer Evian was so kind as to send it to me to review! Yay!  This stuff is pretty darn cool.  It feels like you dramatically dumped a bottle of water all over yourself, except you don't actually get wet.



I took it for a test drive during one of my at home yoga sessions and I found that it was that one thing I didn't know I needed for my workouts.  When I started to heat up, I just misted my face and I instantly felt better, cooler, and refreshed!

Not only does it feel great, it's also good for your skin!  It keeps it hydrated and also wipes away sweat, which reduces breakouts and irritation!

My form isn't perfect, but I thought this shot was pretty cool!

There are a lot of uses for the Evian Facial Spray besides your workouts.  It's perfect for wherever you're gonna get a little steamy.  This will be in my bag for workouts, beach days, theme park adventures, the whole nine. In the pool or ocean, this mist will get rid of any chlorine or salt water stuck to you.  Your face will thank you!

Another cool thing about it is that it doesn't mess up your makeup!  So for all of those times when you just wanted to dunk your face in a pool of water but couldn't because your makeup was too on fleek (even though it was probably melting off anyway) now you have the perfect solution.  Just hold the can a little ways away from your face and mist!  You'll be delightfully cool in seconds.


Find out even more cool ways to use the Evian Facial Spray by checking out their website and liking their Facebook page!! 

XO, Briana

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Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Greek Goddess Makeup Challenge: Artemis

So I've finally gotten around to posting challenge #2 of the Greek Goddess Makeup Challenge!  The past couple of weeks have been a little crazy for me, so I apologize for being a bit behind!  But I'm really excited to share this look with you!  I had a lot of fun creating this badass makeup look and taking the pictures was pretty awesome too.  

Artemis is the goddess of the hunt, so naturally I thought of a a gorgeous warrior.  I pulled this drawing for inspiration, since it had the rich brown colors I was thinking of using and it was just a cool picture!

For the look I wanted some key elements; bold brows, even bolder eyes and a dark lip.  I wanted a deep, sultry look with a feminine flare.  So I started with a blank canvas.  In the picture below, I'm just wearing my foundation, powder, bronzer, and blush.  To see my "blank canvas" mini tutorial, check out the first challenge post here!


After setting up, I filled in my brows making them a little bit wider than my natural line and just a little darker to make them pop.  Then I focused on the shadow.  I used several different colors to create this kind of winged out ombre effect.  I started by creating the wing with a pencil brush and the darkest brown shadow in my Smashbox Shades of Fame palette.  It's important to create a clean line so you can actually see the wing and avoid a muddy look.  Then I began adding color.  I covered my lid with a lighter, golden shadow with a nice shine (Urban Decay Half Baked) and last used some medium browns to fill in my crease and the outer edge of my eyes.   


To finish the look, I rimmed my waterline with a beige eye pencil, lined my top lash line with a black pencil, and put on some volumnizing mascara.  For my lips, I used dark berry shade that I feel really brought the look together!  

For my photos I pulled the top of my hair back and braided the sides for that modern warrior feel and added some gold jewelry.  If you can't tell, the earrings are little arrows! I was way to excited about that.  But I did have a ton of fun doing this look! I even went out wearing the makeup and wound up getting a free tea at Starbucks.  It could have been that I looked extra pretty, OR it could have been that I felt extra pretty and was oozing confidence.  I like to think it was the latter.  ;)




Face

Eyes

Smashbox Shades of Fame Eye Palette [Mocha, Praline, Safari, Bliss]

Lips

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Ready for Fall!

Last year around this time, I was mourning the end of summer.  I was far from ready for the warm weather to leave, the pool days to end, and to put my summer wardrobe away.  However, this year I'm feeling a bit different.  I've had a very full summer with lots of beach time and tank top rocking but I'm about ready to wind down into cozy fall.  So here are a few reasons why I'm super excited for fall this year!

Cozy Time

Fall is cozy time.  There's a crisp breeze blowing, but the sun is still out.  It's perfect weather for boots, leggings, and oversized sweaters and sweatshirts.  I also love me a good hoodie.  Anything comfy and warm. Yum. And plans for fire pit time will be made in the near future as well as an adventure to the pumpkin patch.  Oh, and lots of warm coffee in fall flavors.

Fall Favorites


Fall Fashion

I love fall fashion.  I love layers and warmth and the introduction of darker colors like burgundy.  Oh, and boots.  Did I mention boots? I'm really anxious to break out all of my jackets, sweaters, beanies, knee socks, and chunky scarves.



Fashion Week

As bummed out as I am that I won't be able to attend any of the shows this year, I will be live streaming as many of my favorites as possible and living vicariously through friends and fellow bloggers.  Fashion week is a magical time and I'm excited to indulge in as much of it as I possibly can.



Holidays

Halloween quickly approaches and I'm already thinking about my costume.  This is my second favorite holiday behind Christmas, but Halloween is just so much fun!  I love dressing up, eating lots of candy and going to parties! And Halloween rolls us right into Thanksgiving which rolls us right into Christmas!  It's a fun and festive time for sure.


Well, those are my main reasons.  I'm sure I'll come up with more, but this will do for now.  What are you excited for in Fall?  :)

XO, Briana

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Greek Goddess Makeup Challenge: Aphrodite

So I'm really excited to be a part of this link up with the lovely Jiawun from the blog Beauty Nerd By Night!! She started this awesome idea of doing a "Greek Goddess Makeup Challenge" and I was totally in from the start!  I am all about some Greek goddess makeup.  So for the next several weeks you will see a cute little makeup tutorial that may just be inspired by a badass goddess..  Again, really over excited about this.

So challenge #1 was Aphrodite.  If you didn't already know, Aphrodite is the Greek Goddess of love, desire, & beauty.  That pretty much sums it up.  If you want to know more, do a good old Google search.  I could read about Greek gods and goddesses for hours.


Anywho, for the makeup I was inspired simply by love and the natural beauty of Aphrodite.  I did my hair and makeup and waltzed around all day in a Grecian-esq dress and was freakin loving it.  I pretty much felt like a modern embodiment of Aphrodite herself, which is exactly what I was going for.

I felt as though this makeup called for some flawless skin, so I started by doing my usual toner, eye cream, moisturizer routine.  Then I used a luminous primer, medium coverage foundation, a ton of concealer (which still failed to completely cover my dark circles.  We'll just pretend they're not there.) and topped it all off with some highlighter. [#1] I also used a bit of bronzer for a light contour on my cheek hollows, jaw line, and temples.  Last, I used a pink blush for a natural flush of the cheeks. [#2]


Then came the fun part: the eyes.  I did a natural, defined brow and used a beige liner in my water line to make my eyes look bigger.   After priming my eyelids and using a base shadow, I broke out the pinks.  This year has been my beauty renaissance; I finally figured out how to used red/pink based shadows and not look like I'm sick or dying.  So I wanted to incorporate that into this makeup.  I did an ombre style shadow look, starting with the lightest shade in the center of my lids.  Then I used the next shade on the fare end of my lid and into my crease. In the outer corner I used my darkest shade, which I also blended into the crease.  Last, I used a light nude to brighten the inner edge of my lids and a bright white to highlight my brow bone. [#3] For eyeliner, I used a liquid pen liner to create a natural cat eye and topped it off with mascara. [#4] I painted my pout with a peachy pink lipstick and I was done!

I finished off the look by putting my hair in some bouncy, Grecian curls.  I parted my hair in the center and used a curling wand, twisting my strands away from my face.  Hair fit for a goddess! I took a few too many selfies, but hey it was fun!  I even added a super cutesy, pink, heart themed pic just for Aphrodite!






Face

Eyes
Urban Decay Vice 3 Palette [Sonic, Alchemy, Bondage, Last Sin]
Urban Decay Feminine Palette [Skimp]

Lips

XO, Briana




Wednesday, August 19, 2015

SGMC Book Party- The Time Travelling Fashionista by Bianca Turetsky


I know it has been a long time since I've done a book review, but it's been quite a while since I've read, like, an actual novel.  Which was totally long over due.  I am what you would call a "serial reader": I read a bunch of books in a row and then stop dead for months at a time, then pick back up again.  I am weird, which has already been established.  Anyway, after the past few months of staring at The Maze Runner idly sitting on my night stand, I decided I needed to pick up something new.  I waltzed to my little book shelf and grabbed this one:

The Time Travelling Fashionista by Bianca Turetsky



Now I've had this one for a while now and had been wanting to read it of course, but it just hadn't called to me yet.  But now I can say I read it in about 5ish hours or so.  It was a quick read and I very much enjoyed it.

Although I feel it was written for a much younger audience than my 24 year old self, I still really connected to the book.  The main character was 12, but the story wasn't so much about her 12 year old life as it was about the fashion and the time travelling.  Which was pretty awesome if you ask me.  Now I am pretty easily amused, but I feel like this series was written for me.  Pretty much this young girl, Louise, is in love with vintage clothing and has a very deep appreciation and respect for the pieces.  To not spoil anything in case you want to read it, she winds up time travelling back to the Titanic as a famous movie star.

Now, when I started reading I hadn't read the summary in a while so I didn't realize she wound up on the Titanic until I got to it in the book.  I might have actually jumped up and down if I had been standing up.  I actually recall letting out an audible YES as I freakin' love the Titanic.  And I love fashion so it was like a two for one deal.  So what I liked so much about the book was that combination of vintage fashion and history (and it was actually pretty accurate).  Also what was really enchanting about this book was the illustrations.  Normally we young adults don't get pretty pictures in our novels, but this one had fashion illustrations showing the outfits described in the book.  So you really get the visual, which I think is really important here. Nonetheless, it made me smile.

As for the writing, it was pretty well done.  The story flowed well and it was very easy to read, but not juvenile, in my opinion. I would really recommend this one to anyone who loves fashion and history.  It was a really fun read and I'm now anxious to read the other two books in the series.  In those she adventures to the times of Cleopatra and of Marie Antoinette; two pretty interesting time periods if you ask me.  So those got immediately added to my Amazon cart after I'd finished haha.

Overall I would give this book 4 stars! The only reason I didn't give it a full 5 stars is because I wish there was just a bit more detail.  I feel like there could have been a lot more meat on its bones, but regardless it was a light, fun read which is right up my alley!

Read the authors summary --> HERE!
Buy the book --> HERE!
Watch the really cute book trailer --> HERE!

Have you read this book? What did you think?  And if you plan on reading it let me know how you like it! :)

XO, Briana

Friday, August 7, 2015

New to My Makeup Bag

Recently I've had quite a few new additions to my makeup bag, or I should say something more along the lines of my makeup suitcase.  I've even taken to buying and building my own set of "Alex" inspired drawers, what has proven very helpful.  But I digress.  I've bought a few new things and received a few new things that I feel are very much worth talking about! So please help me in welcoming the newest additions to my makeup family!

Stila Got Inked Cushion Eyeliner in Smokey Quartz


I've only gotten to wear this twice and I already love it!  The color is just epic, there are no other words to describe it.  In general, I tend to keep with the blackest of black liquid liners, because the brown shades I've used are just not bold enough to even bother with.  As all beauty gurus know well, liquid eyeliner is an art, so using a color that is too light to even see is just silly.  Anyway, this smokey quartz color gets the perfect medium.  It's dark enough to show up on my tan skin, yet the brown metallic shades enhance my blue eyes without such a harsh outline.  It really is lovely.  Also, it looks great with just about any combo of eyeshadows and works in any season!  Now the cushion part of this product is also really cool.  It makes the liner very versatile since you have a lot of control over the amount of product you put on the brush.  I'm still getting used to it, but so far it has proven itself worthy to become a part of my regular beauty routine! Find it here!



Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in Rapture


I'm in love with this lipstick.  I received it in a prize pack that I won at a Twitter party I attended last month with Urban Decay and Conde Nast Sway!  Thanks so much to them, it was a great time and I love everything I got!  Anyway, the UD Revolution Lipstick has been on my "to try" list for a while, so I was super excited to get this one.  I loved the color in the tube, but I was a little hesitant since I don't usually don the darker lips.  However, this color is beautiful! Like, I honestly almost feel like it was made for me.  Similar to what I loved about the smokey quartz color, the Rapture shade hit that happy medium for me.  Not too dark, but just dark enough to make a statement.  It's also super smooth going on and had a nice staying power!  Although I wouldn't know much about that, since I'm usually eating something every couple hours or so, lol.  All in all, I really like this lipstick and I'll probably buy another one soon! Find it here!


Nars Blush in Orgasm



I've had this one for a month or so now, but I'd been eyeing this cult classic for a while.  Nars being a little more on the pricey side, I'd been waiting until I had a little extra mula to blow.  But then when I went to get it my mom decided she wanted to buy it for me anyway. SMH. She spoils me, I swear.  But thanks Mom, because this is now my go to blush!   Not only does the name make me giggle like a middle schooler, but the color is to die for.  I'm a sucker for coral/peach based blush and this one has that plus just the right amount of sparkle.  Sold.  I definitely see why it's considered a cult classic and I'm sure I will buy it again once I finish it!  Find it here!


Tarte Power Pigment Lip Tint in True Love



I got this lip crayon around the same time I got the Nars blush, and it has become one of my go to lip colors for summer!  It's a pretty watermelon/coral color and looks fresh and juicy on the lips!  The formula is great because it gives a sheer effect and a nice shine but with the pigment of a lipstick!  It also has a slight minty tingle when you put it on which is pretty awesome.  And it has great staying power!  I tested it and it stayed on for several hours even after drinking and munching on some candy.  I looked in the mirror and was like, "Hey! My lipstick is still on!"  It wasn't quite as pigmented but it still looked great!  I also have recently fallen in love with lip crayons.  I just like the ease of use and I find it easier to put on because of my familiarity with drawing.  :)  Find it here!



W3ll People The Expressionist Mascara



I got this amazing mascara in my May Birchbox, but it has become a part of my regular makeup routine.  There is just something about it that I love!  It gives a natural look but still the ever desired volume!  I love the way it looks and bonus, it's organic!! I'm saddened by the fact that my sample size is almost used up, but it's reasonably priced so I'll probably buy a full sized one! Find it here!

Ulta Buffing Brush



So for a while now I've seen other beauty bloggers and vloggers using this type of brush for their foundation.  I'd sit in awe as I watched them buff their flaws into oblivion and turn out a perfect, airbrushed look in seconds.  I have tried my hands, a flat foundation brush, beauty blenders, the works and nothing made my foundation look as flawless as this buffing brush.  I don't understand the science side of this, but boy does it work.  No streaks, no redness, just nearly perfect skin.  I will say I'm still in the learning stages of brush use and have yet to get on the outrageously priced brushes bandwagon, but this Ulta brand brush worked just fine for me and only put me out about $12.  Which IMO is still a lot for a brush, but in this case it was totally worth it!  Find it here!

XO, Briana