Monday, July 14, 2014

Favorite Polish to Compliment a Summer Tan



We work hard on our tans so it is only natural to want to enhance the look of our bronzed glow the most we can. While your showing off your perfectly pedicured toes at the beach or waving your margarita around while laughing with your friends poolside you can be sure these polish picks will help you look your best.

Essie Nail Varnish in Bikini So Teeny - A bit brighter and more fun than a baby blue this periwinkle color from Essie is one of my favorites. It's great even with one quick coat which I am always a fan of. The bottle makes it seem glittery but don't worry you don't even notice any glitter once it is applied to your nails. You can't get a cuter name for a nail polish than this!

Essie Nail Varnish in Tart Deco - I usually stray away from anything too orange but this is the only exception in my collection. This is a beautiful coral color and seems to be a favorite among bloggers everywhere for good reason. If it can flatter even my skin tone I am sure it will flatter yours.

Essie Nail Varnish in Mint Candy Apple - This was the first Essie polish I purchased and might be what got me hooked. It is a beautiful mint color without getting too green. If you don't want anything too bright but still want to maximize your tan this is a great color for you.

Essie Nail Varnish in Off the Shoulder - I call this the perfect pink. Its not too orange, or red, or Barbie. It's another color that I am able to throw on one quick coat when I am in a rush. This color has made its rounds around my house and friends and looks great on everyone who has tried it!

OPI Nail Lacquer in Alpine Snow - This is my go-to white after trying loads of them out there. Many of them are too sheer, are streaky no matter how many coats you apply, chip too quickly, or they dry too fast and are almost chalky and dull. Not this one. It is opaque and results in smooth, even application.

One last tip, if you want to make a color brighter and more vibrant add a layer of white to start then apply your color once it is dried. It will help give it that extra pop and further enhance your tan.


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Saturday, July 12, 2014

Coconut Oil-Believe the Hype?


I was a little skeptical of all the hype surrounding coconut oil for a while so I did a little digging into what I could use it for and picked some up at Trader Joe's to try. Coconut oil is a semi solid, white substance that turns to liquid once it is in your hand and leave you smelling deliciously like coconut. Claims range from miracle hair treatment, skin moisturizer, makeup remover, even shaving cream. I tested out a few of these claims to see how it measured up.

Deep Conditioning Hair Treatment This is possibly one of the most popular uses for coconut oil outside of cooking and I can see why. Before showering I took a small scoop with my hand and applied to my hair, mid shaft to tip. I then pinned it up and threw on a shower cap for a couple of hours. Sometimes it takes two shampoos to wash it all out so my hair is no excessively oily but even then it does the trick. Even my severely damaged, dry hair is left soft and smooth. Sometimes I will even throw a towel or old pillow case on my pillows and sleep in the oil

Dry Scalp/Dandruff I had a sunburn on my scalp and combined with the dry desert heat my scalp can be a little unruly at times. When this is the case I found massaging coconut oil into my scalp a perfect way to combat a dry scalp. I did this as an overnight treatment and woke up to a much happier scalp. Did I mention that it is believed massaging your scalp can help stimulate hair growth?

Makeup Remover Coconut oil has become my makeup remover of choice. With the exception of removing false lashes (the oil breaks down band on the lashes) I use it to take everything off. Even the most stubborn mascara and eyeliner is no match while I quickly remover all traces of the stuff. Just apply and rub gently with a cotton pad and you will see how easily your makeup comes off without sacrificing a lash or two! No harsh chemicals, no weird film, no drying, and you know exactly what you are putting around your eyes. Your eyes can also benefit from the moisturizing properties of the oil.

What really sold me on coconut oil is not just its effectiveness but how affordable and versatile it is. If I can buy one product and use it for multiple things to save money I'm going to take that opportunity. If you haven't tried it out yet I suggest you do because all the hype has been worth it.

Have you added coconut oil to your beauty regimen? What are your favorite ways to use it?

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Wearable Blue Liner





You may have noticed colored eyeliner and mascara all over the runway and magazines lately but if you are like me you find it unwearable for the every day unless you are the bravest of the brave. The mission: find a wearable blue liner for an easy, every day look and I think I did it.

This look is quick and easy, combining the colored liner trend and my favorite pink lip. I did my usual foundation and spot and under eye concealing. Then after priming the eyes I used MAC Ricepaper eyeshadow. This shadow is almost exactly my skin color but makes my eyes look a little more put together. I lined the top with Urban Decay's 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Mainline ($20) and then lined the outer corner of the bottom lash line and smudged it out a bit. I used Benefit's They're Real Mascara on top and bottom lashes. I applied Benefit's Coralista Blush on my cheeks. I finished the look with the lipstick Macaroon from Topshop ($16).

I swatched the Urban Decay pencil next to the lipstick in the last picture to show how well they go together. I love this color combo and find that it makes my eyes look more blue, my skin looks more tan, and it is a nice change from my usual black or brown eyeliner. If you are looking for a simple, easy way to bring this trend into a daily makeup routine this is the way to go.

Will you be trying the blue eyeliner trend? 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Self Tan Tips -ft St Tropez


Even if I wanted to risk laying out in the sun for hours or the dangers of a tanning bed the truth is it is impossible for me to tan. Thankfully self tanners exist so I can give myself some color year round. After regularly applying the stuff I have it down to an art. Here are some of my tips to help you get that perfect, streak free glow!

After trying a lot of the self tanners out there I have settled on St. Tropez. They have a variety of products that help you get an even, streak-free, and natural looking tan. I use the Bronzing Mousse ($32-$42 for 4oz or 8 oz bottle). I help maintain my tan while also making it darker day-to-day with the Gradual Tan Everyday Body Moisturizer in the medium dark shade ($30) and I apply the product the the St. Tropez Tan Applicator Mitt ($6.50). Ulta exclusively has a kit containing all 3 products for an amazing bargain of $49 (contains the 4oz size of mousse) so if you can get to Ulta I would check that out.

Prep

  • Exfoliate! The main cause for an uneven tan is dry, dead skin. Take the time to give your skin a good scrub in the shower. My scrub of choice is Frank.
  • Apply lotion to your dry areas because these will appear darker when tanner is applied. This includes ankles, feet, knees, elbows, wrists, and hands. DO NOT apply to your entire body.
  • If your skin is really dry you might want to have a couple of weeks of regular exfoliating and applying lotion twice a day to get your skin in tip top shape. Trust me, it's worth it.
  • Make sure you shaved right before which is pretty standard. If I wax I usually wait until the next day to apply tanner otherwise I find tanner settles in where the hair was ripped out and gives you dark spots.
  • If you have light hair and you will be tanning your face make sure you apply moisturizer on the hair line to keep it from staining your hair.
Application

  • If you are wondering if you should get the little mitt on the St. Tropez shelf the answer is YES! Put a few pumps of tanner onto the mitt and apply to skin. Take it one body part at a time and work in large circular motions. St. Tropez has a bronze color so its easy to see if you missed any spots. 
  • Skip over feet and ankles until the end of that leg, you don't need to pump more onto the mitt you can just use residual for those areas. Same goes for hands and elbows.
  • When applying to your face I use a small St. Tropez face mitt or I use a makeup sponge. make sure you blend it out into the hairline so you don't have a harsh line.
  • Let dry before putting on clothes. Make sure they are not tight otherwise you will get patches.
  • Leave tanner on for the specified amount of time. Avoid getting wet or it wont work. I like to leave mine on overnight but I make sure that I have a fan on so I don't sweat at all if its the summer otherwise my tan will be streaky.
  • Notice a dark patch? a big slice of a fresh lemon and rub it into the area!
Maintenance
  • Make sure you exfoliate regularly. I usually apply the mousse once or twice a week and exfoliate before doing so.
  • Moisturize. Moisturize. Moisturize. I use the St. Tropez moisturizer or a body butter day and night. The St. Tropez moisturizer further darkens my color while also providing the moisture I need to keep it looking great.
  • If you notice it is looking splotchy after a couple of weeks take a couple of days off and give yourself a really good exfoliation (or two) to start with a clean slate.
  • Because of frequent washing your face and the top of your hands will fade much faster. Just apply tanner as needed to keep it up (for me its usually 3-4 times a week). I have no problems with self tanner causing me to break out but if you do they do have a formula designed for the face that you can purchase.
Hope this helps! Happy tanning!
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