I have very dark hair and very dark eyes. Both brown. There are certain colors that I think really work with my coloring, and over the years I’ve managed to pick up various shades of them. These colors obviously won’t work for everyone, but they’re the ones I reach for almost any time I’m going to wear eyeshadow. I pair them with browns and beiges so they don’t look too overpowering, but they can be built up for a really bold look for a night out. A few of these are a bit scary, but especially for the fall and winter holidays, they’re very wearable!
Clinique Black Honey Eyeshadow – This is my most recent addition. It’s a beautiful reddish blackened purple. Black Honey is Clinique’s trademark shade (similar to Stila’s Kitten) in that they have a whole range of products in the color. I’ve tried the superbalm, almost lipstick, and now the eyeshadow and I’m constantly pleased with the color. This one adds a bit of depth and sparkle to eyes when applied and blended all over the lid.
Laura Mercier Illuminating Eye Shadow in Fire Glow – A lot of people look at this shade in the pan and think “no way!” It’s a copper-y orange and very unique. I like to place it right on the center of the lid to give a bit of a glow.
Clarins Eye Shadow Single in Gold Leaf – The formula here is SO nice and smooth and pigmented. It was almost too easy to swatch. I’d describe it as a true dark gold. I’m pretty sure this shade is discountinued since it’s not on the Clarins website, but they might have it at counters and I found it on Amazon.
The next three are from MAC – Antiqued which is permanent, Crimson Tryst, and Love’s Lure, which are limited edition and part of the Nudes and Metallics collection. Antiqued is really similar to Black Honey. A big lighter and redder. Crimson Tryst is more purple while Love’s Lure is much redder. I have to be pretty careful applying these as they’re super pigmented and bright, but they give a warm, bright look to my brown eyes.
Finally, Illamasqua Eyeshadow in Vintage. This is from the Neutral Palette. It’s an old, dirty gold, which does not sound appealing but looks a lot prettier than it sounds. It’s perfect paired with a red lip for a holiday party. The palette also contains light, medium, and dark neutral shades which makes it a perfect day-to-night palette for your makeup bag.
It’s so hard to do these posts. I keep putting them off because I’m close to finishing a product and want to include it. As I type I’m about two hair washes away from being done with a shampoo and a detangling spray. I suppose those will have to wait until next time! Here’s what I’ve worked through recently:
Philip B Peppermint and Avocado Shampoo – This feels so nice to use on your scalp, especially in the summer or after a workout. It’s pretty clarifying, so I don’t suggest using it all the time, but it got the job done and felt tingly and smelled wonderful. I’d buy it again if I were looking for another shampoo.
Diptyque Candles in Iris and Jacinthe. Obviously love these. I’m planning on converting the jars into brush holders or pen holders for work even. I think they’d look nice on my desk!
Tom Ford Brow Sculptor in Chestnut. This was a great summer brow color. I literally used this all the way up. I impressed myself even. I have this in Espresso for the colder months which is what I’m using now!
Peter Thomas Roth Laser-Free Regenerator Moisturizing Gel Cream. Honestly I think they make the names of these things uncomfortably long on purpose. I love this stuff. It has such a unique texture. It keeps skin hydrated and primes it well for makeup. It also makes my skin feel super soft and wrinkle free. I guess I can’t credit the moisturizer entirely for my lack of wrinkles since I’m not even 25, but it definitely doesn’t hurt.
Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray. HOLY GRAIL HAIR PRODUCT. Seriously, if you have hair, this is the best product for any style. It’s in between a dry shampoo and an aerosol hairspray. It makes clean hair feel a bit dirty and dirty hair feel cleaner. It smells amazing. The only problem is I loved it so much I used it up rather quickly. The bottle is huge compared to similar products but I went through it in less than two months. And at $39 it’s not really sustainable. I think I’d buy it again, but use it a bit more sparingly.
Philip B Russian Amber Imperial Conditioning Creme. This smelled great. Unfortunately that’s the best thing I have to say about it. Also be warned that this product is insanely expensive. I didn’t pay NEARLY full price for it. The problem is that since I don’t wash my hair that often (every 3 days if I can get away with it) I also don’t condition it very much. So when I do, I want a heavier, richer product. This seems like it would work, but it didn’t. It would be a great everyday conditioner though if the price weren’t so prohibitive of that. Towards the end of the tube I started using it without shampooing just to add a bit more moisture to the ends of my hair.
Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser. If you’ve met me, you’ve heard me rave about this product. It works into a lovely foam, exfoliates gently, leaves skin super soft, and smells (and tastes, oops) AMAZING. It’s just a great exfoliant to have around in case your face seems dull or tired. It’s invigorating and refreshing. I seriously love it. I got a sample in my Birchbox, one in Matt’s Birchbox Man that I commandeered, a travel size in this set, and then purchased the full size. So obsessed. For what it’s worth though, I’m not nearly as impressed with the other products in the Suki range. They weren’t bad, just not life changing like the Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser.
Clarins Water Purify One Step Cleanser is perfect to take off a bit of makeup before cleansing, remove residue after cleansing, or just use quickly in the morning to wake up and prep skin for moisturizer and makeup. I’ve gone through quite a few of these actually. It’s one of my most repurchased skin care products!
Klorane Gentle Dry Shampoo. When it’s that third day and the texturizing spray just won’t cut it, this is what I reach for. I replaced this empty bottle with the version for oily hair with nettle in it. I don’t think it works quite as well and has a bit of a stronger scent (this one is almost completely fragrance free), so I’ll be switching back to the original when that one makes it into a future empties post.
It’s mostly hair and skin care (almost completely hair and skin care!) but those tend to get used up faster and more frequently. What have you used up recently?
It’s been a while since I’ve done an update on the blog, I know. But things have been a bit crazy here! For starters, Matt and I got engaged!
Matt proposed Friday, October 11th in our apartment with a beautiful ring inside a glass of champagne followed by an AMAZING dinner at Daniel. I said yes, obviously and we spent the long weekend at my parents celebrating and drinking (more) champagne and brainstorming how to have the perfect wedding. The Wednesday after that we embarked on an 8-day cruise to the Bahamas, a sort of Engagementmoon!
Taking a relaxing trip, just the two of us, was the perfect way to celebrate. We had a significant amount of time to just focus on each other and the promise we were making and the excitement of what was to come. We had massages in the spa, days reading on the beach, and didn’t have to worry about cooking or cleaning. Not to mention the beaches were beautiful
Here are a few photos from the trip if you’d like to see!
Saying goodbye to a gray New York City!
Waking up for a spectacular sunrise off the coast of Florida.
And going for a swim (and kisses) in the Caribbean!
Would you go on an engagementmoon? Or would you rather wait to take a big trip for your Honeymoon? I think it was so fun to spend a few days on the beach away from everything to celebrate on our own. And since we want to head to a mountain to ski for our Honeymoon, why not both?
I recently heard about an interesting company called True & Co. The idea is that you can fill out a fit survey and get a personalized shop of lingerie ideal for your body. Bras that fit? Without an awkward measuring tape? Sounds too good to be true. And it mostly is, which is why True & Co lets you have your order for a fully refundable $45 deposit. They’ll send you your order, let you spend a week trying everything on in your home, then you can keep what you want and return what you don’t and they’ll refund or charge you for the difference. Also, shipping is free both ways. Sounds great, right? So here’s how it worked out for me:
Here’s everything all neatly boxed up. The presentation really is lovely. I picked three bras, and they rounded out the order with two from the shop that they thought I’d like, for a total of five.
First up, Pure by Montelle. This was one of my picks. When I selected it, it was on sale for $18. I REALLY wanted to like this. It’s a beautiful bra, so soft and classic. Unfortunately, the band is just too loose. It’s currently marked down to $12 though and the only size left in stock is one band size smaller than the one I received, so I may be repurchasing in the smaller band size, but this one is getting returned.
Next was one of True & Co’s picks, the Night No. 13 Strapless. I wasn’t thrilled about this, since it seems like a basic nude strapless bra, so I’m returning it. It also didn’t fit that great and at $45, it just wasn’t working for me. Returned.
Another one of my selections from my personalized shop, Luscious by Blush. This really is Luscious. Enough padding to shape, but not enough to really enhance. The cups are lacy and the back and side panels are a polkadotted mesh. It’s also one of the most flattering bras I think I’ve ever worn. I bought it on sale for $18, but it’s currently marked down to $12. Status: Kept.
True & Co.’s second suggestion for me. I think this bra is beautiful in the box. Unfortunately, once it’s on it’s not quite as nice. This is the Long Long Ago by Elle Macpherson. It’s really beautiful but unfortunately not the most comfortable or flattering, and at $55, the most expensive of the bunch. Returned.
Finally, my last pick. Midnight Kiss by Blush. This is probably the sexiest out of the bunch and I’m thrilled with it, especially since it was also on sale. The combination of black lace and midnight blue satin is so gorgeous, and the fit is surprisingly perfect. This one I also kept.
So all in all, I kept two and returned three, not bad considering any given trip to Victoria’s Secret usually results in me bringing about 15 or so into the dressing room, hating all of them, grabbing one that’s reasonably priced and fits well enough and buying it in three colors. I definitely liked the experience and found it super convenient and easy. Filling out the return survey also gives them super helpful data so that they can build a better personalized shop and recommend more things to my taste that should fit my shape better. Love it! Would I order from True & Co again? Absolutely.
Bonus: obviously if it comes in a box and involves tissue paper, the cat’s interest is piqued. Silly, Bisous.
Matt and I were planning on heading to Central Park after work today for the Central Park Conservancy Film Festival. They were showing West Side Story (I told Matt it had to do with gangs, was set in New York, and Marlon Brando was in it). The plan was to get there early, stake out a good spot, and make sort of a picnic date out of it. Unfortunately, it rained.
While they were still showing the movie, sitting in wet grass wasn’t entirely appealing, so we had a makeshift living room picnic instead!
I picked up some sandwiches from a favorite place near work, we spread our blanket out on the living room rug instead of the Sheep’s Meadow grass, and we watched 2 episodes of season 4 of The Wire. So it was kind of like a regular evening except no one had to cook and we sat on the floor. Which made it a little more romantic. We also took a break in between episodes to run out and get frozen yogurt from across the street!
They’re still screening movies through the weekend, so maybe we’ll catch a different one. The Shining on Sunday, anyone? Do you ever have stay-at-home dates?
About two weeks ago, the Marc Jacobs Beauty line launched at Sephora. I’d taken a half day, was about to leave on vacation, and decided to pop in and take a look.
While I was really impressed with the eyeshadows, and went back and forth about picking up a palette, I eventually decided that they weren’t different enough for me to justify the price. I did however pick up a few other things from the line. I’ve been testing them out over the past couple of weeks so I thought I’d let you know what I think.
I picked up the Lash Lifter – Gel Volume Mascara, the Brow Tamer Grooming Gel, and a Lust For Lacquer Lip Vinyl – Sheer.
The mascara is fine. It’s not as dramatic as I usually like, but it doesn’t clump and it doesn’t smudge. It reminds me of the tubing mascaras that kind of wrap your lashes and create mini tubes around each lash. I found it to be buildable, but you really have to work to get a dramatic look. For natural looking lashes or when you’re going to be in a high smudge risk situation though, I’d definitely reach for this one.
The brow gel I really like, but I think it’s less about the formula and more about the applicator. It’s genius. Brow gels usually come with a spoolie applicator, like a mascara. But this one has a sort of fuzzy caterpillar brush. I love it. I actually feel like it applies product evenly to my brows. The formula itself works well enough, definitely a soft hold which is nice and my brows stay in place, but I don’t have to much of a problem with that anyway. What I mostly look for in a brow gel is that it prevents whatever I’ve filled my brows in with from migrating around my face, and this does that just fine.
Finally, the lipgloss. I’m more of an opaque, full on, lipstick kind of girl, but throwing on a gloss is a lot easier and a lot more casual for everyday. This stuff has sort of a fruity, minty, vanilla scent that’s hard to describe. It’s also pretty cooling slash tingling on your lips, but I wouldn’t call it plumping. It feels really nice to wear, but doesn’t last too long – it is a gloss afterall. The packaging on this is really nice and, for me, the applicator fits to the shape of my lips really well. I’d consider buying another sheer shade, but when it comes to sheer glosses, they all kind of look the same on me, and opaque glosses just get messy. Here’s a swatch on my hand in natural light:
And here’s one on my awkward face in bathroom lighting:
Have you tried out anything from the new line? I’m also really curious about the foundation and I’ve heard the undereye concealer is actually greatx!
Might as well keep you posted!
Since I decided I was going to run about 3 weeks ago, I’ve logged 48.22 kilometers. Am I starting to enjoy it? Meh. With 10 days left in the month, I’m not sure if I’ll make it to the target 90, but it’s not impossible!
Of those 48km or so, only 7.02 were on the weekend, but there were another 14.19 that were while I was on vacation so I’m counting those too.
So I’ve earned about $24 in regular km, and $32 in weekend km, so I’ve got $56 to spend!
Now, I won’t lie. I haven’t been sticking to the part of On Running where I said whatever I bought would be subtracted from how much I’ve run. I think instead I’m going to save up my running earnings and buy something special at the end of the month. Any ideas on what it should be? Something that I’ll use fairly often that will remind me of all the hard work I’ve put into it! I’ll think about it more.
In the meantime, here are a few products I use post run which I’ve been loving.
Yes, yes, I need to work on my blog photography. I’m aware.
Anyway, Philip B Peppermint & Avocado Volumizing & Clarifying Shampoo – I don’t know about volumizing and clarifying, but this stuff feels so refreshing. The peppermint makes it tingly and the avocado makes it nourishing. I lather it in and then let it sit for a minute or two to let my scalp tingle. It’s so refreshing to use after a run. It’s also an incredible green color, but of course that doesn’t really matter.
And the Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser - This stuff is like lemon and sugar that lathers. The sugar scrub dissolves as you use it and it leaves your face totally clean and your skin energized. Also when your face is kind of salty with sweat, the lemony sugar scent kind of makes your face feel like a margarita? I don’t know, I love this stuff in general but it’s especially lovely after a workout. The lid to my jar cracked after an unfortunate incident where the cat thought it would be fun to knock everything off the counter, so I’m hoping I use it up before it dries out. I don’t think it’ll be too much of a problem though.
What are your post workout essentials?
After a week at the beach, smothering my face in sunscreen, sweat, and saltwater, I was really feeling like I needed to refresh and re-energize my skin, so I reached for one of my favorite face masks. There are so many out there that are great, but here are a few that I find myself reaching for the most.
The Malin + Goetz Detox Face Mask is amazing. It starts out as a clear gel, then foams up on it’s own to a sort of shaving cream consistency. While it’s doing that you can feel the little oxygen bubbles on your skin. They’re supposed to be reaching into your pores to pull out all the grime. Yep. It’s super gentle and natural. I’m a big fan.
Next, and this mask is really nice to use after sun or wind exposure, is the Nuxe Masque Crème Fraîche de Beauté. A mouthful, I know. But this is the ultimate mask for lazy girls (or guys!) with stressed skin. Why? Because you don’t have to rinse it off! You let it absorb, then massage it in. So easy!
Another favorite, is the Borghese Fango Active Mud for Face and Body. Now be warned, this stuff is one of those it-tingles-so-you-know-it’s-working products. You definitely feel it doing it’s thing on your face. This is a little more hands on to use since you have to pay attention not to let it dry on your face and it’s a scary green color that requires diligent rinsing to get off, but it’s worth it. Here’s a tip that changed my life: apply mud masks with a brush. SO much easier to get an even application without wasting a ton of product on your fingertips. It also is much cleaner and more precise. I use the brush that came with…
Wei Golden Root Purifying Mud Mask. This stuff smells SO GOOD. Like magic flower petals. It’s a weird brown/tan color, but feels so nice to apply and leaves skin amazingly soft. It also comes in these little pods which are great for travel but kind of annoying to use, since one pod is more than one applications worth. You can leave the remainder in the pod and save it for the next time, but you have to be sure to close it tightly and use it before it dries out, which is a shame because this stuff is expensive.
And finally, the mask I reached for last night, the Fresh Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask. I got this as a sample when I bought the Fresh Black Tea Age Delay Eye Cream, and I’ve been willing it to last so I won’t feel compelled to go buy the full size. It has the texture of mashed potatoes and feels like massaging a cloud into your face. It’s so refreshing and calming and cooling and afterwards your skin feels so smooth and balanced! I love it! I might pick up the full size when I run out of some of my other masks, but as you can see from this post, that’s not likely to be any time soon.
What are your favorite face masks?
Ok, big fail on the Blaugust front. I haven’t blogged in almost a week! I tried to keep up while we were on vacation but it just wasn’t going to happen and I didn’t feel like forcing it.
The rest of our trip was so fun though! Tuesday it poured with rain, so we picked up some lobster rolls for lunch (yum) and about a thousand different kinds of fish for a savory stew Matt’s brother in law made for dinner. We were also able to witness Matt’s nephew’s first real steps (he’s just over a year old now!) and spend some quality time with his family. Wednesday was the annual Grand Illumination night. Every year, there’s a celebration on Martha’s Vineyard where all of the cottages in Oak Bluffs light paper lanterns on their porches and the whole neighborhood glows. This was my first illumination, since the past few years our trips weren’t timed right. Here are a few photos from the night!
One of the more elaborately lit cottages.
These lanterns look like grapes!
And these look like ice cream cones!
And these have a message
It was almost magical to see everything all lit up. Thursday we did some cleaning, spent some more time on the beach, played a few games of chess (Matt destroyed me as usual) and I managed to read a few chapters of my book (finally reading my way through Game of Thrones!) This was the gorgeous sunset Thursday night, a beautiful way to spend our last night on the island!
Friday we headed back into the city, greeted the cat who has never been happier to see us, restocked our groceries, and settled in for the night. We had to get up early on Saturday to make it upstate for my grandparents’ 55th Wedding Anniversary party! 55 years! Such an incredibly long time and a great occasion to celebrate with my mom’s side of the family. It’s been a pretty family heavy week so it’s nice to have some quiet time with just the two of us today.
So now you’re all caught up and hopefully you’ll forgive my lapse in blogging. I have some nice posts planned, including a mini review of a few products from the new Marc Jacobs Beauty line and a baked kale and egg recipe that’s the fastest, easiest dinner I’ve made all year.
How has your week been?
A blog haiku for today:
Ran 5k with Matt
Then kayaked in the ocean
Who cares if it rains?