ROUGE G DE GUERLAIN | GIGI

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For my birthday this year, the boy spoiled me with a sweet little bundle of gifts. Among those, I found a very fancy Guerlain lipstick that I had always wanted to try but never could justify the splurge. Let’s just say my husband is very good at selecting gifts.

The first thing that struck me about the Guerlain Rouge lipstick was the heaviness of the tube. This little golden bullet features a little compact mirror and is both sleek and weighty. All of the little details have been covered – like when you unclasp the lid, the mirror immediately pops open, ready to use.

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The shade I received, Gigi, is a lovely pinky-red shade that leans just a bit deeper and more fuchsia than watermelon. It glides on smoothly and has a very light fruity scent. It feels quite like a soft balm on the lips and lasts for about 4-5 hours. It also fades nicely, leaving a bit of a stain behind.

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Gigi Applied Directly From Tube

I can see some having the tiniest amount of trouble with feathering if used without a lip liner, but I didn’t experience any bleeding at all when I used a lip brush to apply.

Overall, I would say this is a very comfortable lipstick in a beautiful shade. The packaging makes it especially lovely. If you’re looking to treat yourself or a gift to give the lipstick lover, this would be my choice.

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A MILLION REASONS WHY I CAN’T

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In case the following gets too intense…here’s me with blue lips. icon wink A MILLION REASONS WHY I CANT

 

Hands up if you’ve ever wished you were the polar opposite of who you are. Like, you’re Chico’s and the thing you want to be most is Alexander McQueen. Hopefully, there are more hands than my own going up. So many times I have looked at myself and thought, “If only I were smarter, slimmer, taller, younger, older, lighter, darker, a man, a superhero, a cat” (they get to sleep A LOT). Countless times I have leaned on my introverted personality and wished beyond all else I could be fearless. The honest truth is that, in some instances, being those things would actually make life easier. Or so it seems.

When I pull out my “let’s get real” glasses, however, I can more clearly see the flaws in my theory. For all intents and purposes I – a mostly Caucasian, American girl, born and bred in the Bible belt of the southern United States – have it more than made. My parents are still married after 30+ years, I have a solid relationship with my husband and family, we have been given employment opportunities that allow us to use our creative gifts and talents on a daily basis, and most months I can pay my bills on time with enough left over for lipstick. I have so many of the “good things” that life has to offer. Yet somehow, I’m left wanting what’s just over there.

If I’m honest, I don’t REALLY hate who I am. So why the desire to be all the things I’m not?

I am afraid to do what I’m called to do in the skin I’m in.

A privileged white girl doesn’t get to share her struggles in a world where, as much as we would like it to be, people aren’t colorblind and poverty still exists. Does she?

A childless woman can’t have any insight or encouragement for a mom who has been up half the night with a vomiting, feverish, lethargic toddler. Can she?

Someone who has never battled an eating disorder or done drugs or been an alcoholic can’t relate to those who are struggling with addiction. No?

An introverted girl with a stammering Texas drawl can’t possibly be a leader of women and, God forbid, men or have any sort of voice in a public setting. Right?

A girl with anxiety and depression and constant physical pain can’t help bring peace and healing to others. Or can she?

And that’s when it hit me, like a mascara wand in a wide-open eye: I am so quick to judge myself in ways I would never judge others. It is easier to see how the imperfections and differences of others make them more, not less. The things we use as our biggest crutches will either be the things that propel us forward or the ties that hold us back.

How easy it is to forget, in lusting after someone else’s covetable qualities, that we would also be inheriting their struggle, their insecurities, and their imperfections. A million new reasons why we can’t. Until we are comfortable enough with our shortcomings and even our strengths we will never be able to completely, without judgment, contribute any good to the world.

It is easier to place our callings into the hands of those we deem more capable to fulfill that role. The funny thing is that we have all been given that thing – the thing that makes us angry, the thing that moves us to tears, the thing that keeps us awake at 1:22am on a Monday night (Tuesday morning?) – and WE ARE THE ONLY ONES WHO CAN DO THAT THING LIKE WE WOULD DO THAT THING. Not everyone will like it or understand, but that’s okay. Someone will – and maybe that someone needs to see all the messiness and struggle and beauty we put out into the big wide world so they can follow suit.

So let’s get comfy in our vastly differing, stunningly gorgeous, perfectly imperfect skin. After all, it’s the thing that holds our hearts and minds in just the right place.

 

 

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UNDERNEATH IT ALL | 90’s Style Guide

You guys. It has been absolute ages since I’ve created a fashion inspiration board. I used to be practically addicted to turning the internet inside-out looking for the the exact perfect little clutch/shoe/velvet high-waist legging to fit my mood. So, when Vienne Milano contacted me to see if I would be interested in creating a style board for their latest hosiery collection, I was beyond happy to oblige.

Because it’s fall and because I’m practically living in all things cozy and plaid, I loved the idea of taking the nostalgia of the 90’s and elevating it to something that could easily be worn today. I’m practically dying over that plaid shirt-skirt situation.

Let me know if you’d like to see more inspiration-style posts!

 

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Click below for details:

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Note: This is not a sponsored post. I received no payment or compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my very own.

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URBAN DECAY VICE 3 PALETTE

Urban Decay Vice Palette

Well it happened. I honestly didn’t mean for it to. It wasn’t even on my radar. But it was my birthday and I had a coupon and it was so pretty. Enough with the excuses – meet vice.

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The latest in giant tins of gorgeous from Urban Decay holds 20 brand new shades. I was immediately drawn to the column of reds and burgundies in the palette. The swatches proved them to be exactly what you’d expect from Urban Decay – soft, almost creamy with an insane level of blendability.

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The nude matte shades in the range are slightly different to the more colorful palettes. The have a smooth texture and shades that lean toward the warm side. If you have a medium to dark skin, you might be pleased to actually find a shade that works as a non-shimmery highlight. For the paler among us, there is a light pink shade (Truth) that will work in a pinch.

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The taupes and golds in the collection are a lovely mix of shimmers and mattes. Perfect for any everyday look you might imagine.

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To round everything out are a few classic pops of color. Vanity, Dragon, Heroine and Freeze are pretty straight forward, but will give the perfect “little bit extra” when you’re looking to brighten things up just a bit. I also think these will make gorgeous smokey eyes during the holiday season.

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Overall, I was much more impressed with the Vice Palette than I had anticipated because of the variety and quality of shadows. One adjustment to the palette I most appreciated was the inclusion of some really great matte shades. I was also fairly happy that there were no really gritty or glittery shades, as those tend to give the least payoff and are often uncomfortable to wear. As a side note, I really like the little pouch that came with the palette!

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THE BODY SHOP: VITAMIN E OVErNIGHT SERUM

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I have an ongoing infatuation with serums and oils. Hair oils, body oils, face oils – I love ‘em all. There is something so comforting about applying an oil to your skin. As we approach summer it would seem it’s time for the oily skinned of us to put them away, but I’ve found myself reaching for them just as often. There is nothing like an oil or serum that instantly hydrates and gives skin that soft, nourished look and feel.

vitaminE.1 THE BODY SHOP: VITAMIN E OVErNIGHT SERUM

One of my favorites from winter that has carried over into spring and summer is the Vitamin E Overnight Serum-in-Oil from The Body Shop. This oil can be applied as light or heavy handed as you like. The scent is a soft, slightly powdery fragrance but it’s not at all overpowering. Just one tiny drop, warmed between your palms is enough to press into your face for immediate results.

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If you are looking for an affordable, easy-to-use serum, this may be the perfect choice.

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This Week in Polarizing Fashion

spring 2014 shoes

There is something so interesting to me about fashion that separates people into vehement camps. Not that I like division, conversely (see what I did there?), I think it’s amazing that otherwise sensible human beings can get so divisive over FOOTWEAR. It’s just fashion, people.

Today, I’m sharing some of my favorite pairs of shoes for spring…these are the ones I’ve gone back to over and over since the days have warmed. The funny thing with each of these styles is that people have either gone nuts over them (in a really good way) or have practically shunned me with their gagging noises and glaring side-eye. Either way, here are my current footwear faves for spring!

The Birkenstocks (I got mine on Poshmark) have been in the back of my mind for some time now, but I finally took the plunge. Funnily enough, the “fake” white asos Birkis (#4) are infinitely more comfortable than the real deal (#2) – plus they have really cute gold studs on the sides. I love the 90s feel of the black New Look sandal  with white heels(#1; on sale right now at asos!). The python slip on sneaker (#3; similar here) is both snazzy and comfy all at the same time.

14htbf SpringShoes This Week in Polarizing FashionWhat articles of clothing do you have that people love to hate?

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L’Oreal Extraordinaire Liquid Lipstick

l'oreal extraordinaire lipstick

These new Extraordinaire lip colors from L’Oreal Color Riche are absolutely magical. And this is coming from a girl who isn’t overly fond of lipgloss. The texture on these is by far one of my favorite glossy formulas. Not to mention that the color options are absolutely stunning. Magic in a little gold tube, I tell ya.

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As far as formula goes, the I would compare them to the YSL Rouge Pur Couture liquid lipsticks. They’re one part lipstick one part gloss but they manage to be more moisturizing than sticky. My favrorite part of the L’Oreal Extraordinaire lipsticks is the way they wear. They have a slight staining quality that keeps you from getting the infamous “ring around the mouth” and I’ve not had any problems with them bleeding into lip lines. They also leave plenty of moisture on the lips like a balm long after the color has worn off.

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I would have a hard time choosing just one favorite from the five that I have. Ruby Opera is a deep cherry red that is perfect for an evening look. Orange Tempo is my favorite for a mod daytime look. Rose Symphony and Molto Mauve are the go-to colors for tossing in my handbag everyday and Nude Ballet is a gorgeous nude to wear with a dark smokey eye.

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URBAN DECAY ELECTRIC PALETTE

Electric

I had absolutely no intentions of purchasing this latest Electric palette from Urban Decay. And then I walked into Ulta and there it was, all bright and innocent, just sitting there looking like a 1990’s rockstar. So, of course I couldn’t leave it there all alone.

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As much as I thought I wouldn’t get much use out of this ultra neon palette, I have to say, I’ve found myself reaching for it multiple times a week since I found it. It is perfect to use along with your neutrals to add a little color or you could go full on Jem and the Holograms if you’d like. I personally love mixing a little of the shadow with water or my elf seal and lock and use it as a liquid liner. I’ve even popped a little over lip balm as a lip color! Needless to say, it’s come into play much more that I anticipated.

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If you are looking for a high quality colorful palette, I would definitely recommend the Urban Decay Electric Palette. The only shade that was a bit disappointing was Revolt…it has quite a bit of fallout and very little pigmentation. The good thing about that, though, is that it’s perfect for pressing a little over one of the other shadows to get a more high-impact glam look.

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P.S. I posted a few photos on Instagram if you’re interested in how I’ve been using the Electric Palette!

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Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade

anastasia dipbrow

Eyebrows were by far the most intimidating part of my routine when I first began learning how to do makeup. For years, I left my poor overplucked brows alone for fear of looking like Groucho Marx. For a person with light eyes, this often left me looking washed out or sad and tired. About 6 years ago, I discovered the magic that is filling in those brows. That said, I had yet to find a magical product that helped me both add color AND control those pesky little hairs that refuse to lay flat.

I have tried Anastasia products in the past and to be honest, wasn’t really successful with them. My main issue was finding a shade that matched my (then bright auburn) hair. Now that I have an “unnatural” hair color, I thought I would revisit the coveted brand and try out their latest iteration of brow taming – Dipbrow.

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The formula of Dipbrow is somewhat like a cream eyeshadow with a touch more gel-like finish. I purchased the color Chocolate, but they have since added quite a few shades to the range, which is great. Since using this little pot of goodness, I have discovered a whole new level of control over my brows. The little hairs that once only pointed in an unflattering downward direction are now nicely coerced into a more horizontal direction. I also get my preferred retro shape in a much easier process with fewer gaps to fill in with a pencil or powder.

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Overall, if your looking for a fast and easy way to create a strong brow that stays in place, I would HIGHLY recommend Dipbrow. If subtle is more your approach, make sure you purchase a light enough shade and use very little product – or opt for a brow powder instead. For me, this has saved minutes of frustration per day – and extra minutes mean more time for coffee!

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Tarte LipSurgence in Tipsy

I have been on a huge Tarte kick lately. Something about their packaging along with great quality product has me obsessing in a very real way. As much as I fought buying another lip product, I couldn’t resist the new Lip Surgence crayons.

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After quite the search, I settled on the shade Tipsy, which is a warm muted melon. It has a soft brightness to it that just reminds me of Spring. Although these are labeled “Power Pigments” I wouldn’t consider this formula opaque or comparable to a lipstick. It still has quite a bit of sheerness to it but the color manages to show up nicely on lips. The formula is a bit tacky to me – like a lipstick but without the full color. It has a nice minty scent and is easy to use, though, which makes this a great everyday lip product for warmer days.

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