IPSY BAG | MAY 2015

I have to say, I was so excited about the design on this month’s ipsy bag – it’s exactly the kind of bag I would actually purchase! Check out the unbagging video to see what I got inside!

Curious about ipsy? The short story is that for $10 a month, you’ll get a makeup bag full of 5 deluxe or full sized beauty products to try out. You can also earn points for reviewing those items on their website and exchange them for reward products. It’s an easy way to try out things you might not otherwise know about (hello, my holy grail Jesse’s Girl eyeliner)!

Happy Weekend!

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COLOURPOP: The Cheeks

Part 3 of the ColourPop round up are the blushes. I woke up at an ungodly hour the day these launched and spent about 4 hours trying to get these babies into my cart. Commitment, ya’ll.

colourpop blush

 

All of the Super Shock blushes have a soft diffused look that is what makes cream to powder blushes so nice. They apply best before using any powder products and need to be worked into the skin to get an even finish. The texture is a little drier than the Maybelline Bouncy Blush, but a very similar formula. I prefer using my fingers to apply them and then blending the edges out with a buffing brush.

colourpop blushWith the exception of Fox (a satin), all of my shades are labeled mattes (although, I swear Between the sheets has a very slight sheen to it). Mochi is a very sweet blue toned pink and Early Bird has a strong red undertone that would be lovely to wear during summer to highlight a tan. Holiday and Between the Sheets are the most natural and are both excellent for daily wear.

While they’re not my all-time favorite blushes, I will say they are easy to use and make a great alternative to a standard powder blush. Now, I really want to get my hands on those brand-new highlighters! 😉

Hope you enjoyed this little ColourPop collection! Stay tuned, I’ve got another similar brand series coming up soon!

 

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COLOURPOP: The Lips

Because I’m a 24/7 glasses wearer (it’s a fact: I’ve fallen asleep in my glasses on more than one occasion), I am a massive lover of lipstick. As much as I love the creativity that can go into an eye look, I hate having to cover up all that work with my glasses! So, on myself, I’ll usually reach for a bold lipstick for my everyday look.

ColourPop Lippie Stix have been at the top of my most reached for list the past 2 months or so. I am obsessed with the pigmentation and shade range. The packaging makes it super simple to apply + they’re only five dollars!

colourpop

Of the shades I own, Brink is my favorite neutral – it’s got just the right tone to be the perfect “my lips but better” shade. The electric brights, Punky and Yasmin, are both perfect for summer and Grind has an edginess that I absolutely love! Bossy is a very wearable classic red and Fancy has an unexpected vintage coral tone (think Joan from Mad Men). Lumière is a little on the grey/brown side for my skin tone, but would work beautifully for deeper or more olive toned girls.

All of the shades are pigmented, semi matte, and fairly long-wearing. I get around 6 hours from the brighter shades when using a lip liner and around 4 hours for the lighter neutrals (Brink and Lumière). The formula is very creamy and has a tendency to go on a little thick if you’re not careful. The smaller bullet is incredibly helpful at controlling placement and I rarely reach for a lip brush when using these. I have no issues with them drying out my lips, which is a huge bonus when working with more matte formulations.

Have you tried any of the ColourPop Lipsticks? Which is your favorite?

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ALL THE SPARKLE | ROCKSBOX REVIEW

When it comes to jewelry, I’m practically a magpie. Is is sparkly? Shiny? Are there rhinestones/hammered details/delicate chains involved? Sign me up. Layering accessories has always been something I thoroughly enjoy. Recently, my favorite bits to pile on are simple-but-interesting dainty things.

I spoke about Rocksbox in a recent video, but I just HAD to share the latest little baubles they sent over. These gold bar studs by Sophie Harper are exactly what I have been looking for since last year. I haven’t removed them since my box arrived and there is no way I’m sending them back. These little darlings are all mine!

rocksbox

Earrings: Sophie Harper | Necklace: Gorjana | Pave Ring: Jules Smith | Cutout Ring: Gorjana

 

If you’re curious about Rocksbox, it’s essentially the Netflix of jewelry services. For $19 a month, they’ll send you a box filled with 3 pieces curated specifically to your tastes. You keep the items for as long as you like, and send them back when you’re ready for more. If you fall in love (like I did with this gold circle pave ring in the photo above) they offer a special discounted price. Perfect for an obsessive jewelry fiend like myself or someone who enjoys trying new pieces but can’t afford to purchase full priced items often.

If you’re interested in trying Rocksbox for yourself, you can use the code howtobefancyXOXO and get a month of service free. It’s only good through May 5th, 2015 though, so grab it and go!

 

Note: Rocksbox kindly sent me a free 3 month trial and offer code for my readers to take advantage of. All opinions expressed are entirely my own. I was not paid for my review.

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What to Wear: Spring Basics

NYDJ I’m sure we’ve all been there. A new season rolls around and you swear you have nothing at all to wear. Nothing, I tell ya.

Since this happens to me every time the weather changes, I’ve realized that this is the time to rely on your basics. Now, your staple pieces might look a little different than mine, but these are my go-to pieces when absolutely nothing is working.

We all know the joys of a perfectly fitting pair of dark wash jeans. At least I hope you’ve felt the pure pleasure of not having to tug and pull (or suck in TOO hard) while wearing your favorite denim. My must haves are dark and super skinny jeans – even better if they’re hi-waisted! If you’re having a tough time finding skinnies that fit just right, I’d suggest trying out a well-made pair of jean leggings or stretch skinny jeans like these from NYDJ – they’re much more forgiving than traditional denim and can look incredibly chic.

When I want to feel both comfy and cool, a boyfriend jean is what I reach for. Whether they’re ripped to shreds or just a nice classic light and loose denim, this slightly slouchy pant is easily dressed up or down.

My favorite things to wear with spring basics are classic vans in a surprising finish (hello, silver metallic!). Something about them is perfect when you’re tired of wearing winter boots but it’s just a little too early for sandals. Pair with jeans and a soft, simple top and you’re set for a day of errands. They also look amazingly adorable worn with spring dresses and skirts!

Speaking of dresses, spring seems to be when all the wedding invites start rolling in. I like to have that one dress that I know if all else fails, I at least have something I know I’ll look good in. This has come in handy more than you can imagine, since I’m so on top of life and have everything planned to a t (please note sarcasm). This stunning LBD has just the right amount of classic cocktail and modern details.

The pièce de résistance of my spring wardrobe also happens to be my year round go-to. Oh, trusty leather jacket…when have you failed me? The answer to that, of course, is never. Except maybe when summer hits 110 degrees, but you can’t blame THAT on gorgeous (vegan) leather. There is nothing like a leather jacket to pull together the perfect ensemble.

 

Special thanks to NYDJ for sponsoring today’s post. NYDJ is “The Original Slimming Fit” brand, and incorporate slimming technology into all their jeans – exclusive Lift Tuck Technology. Learn more about the brand here.

 

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COLOURPOP: THE SHADOWS

colourpop

After hearing about them for the longest time, I finally placed an order with ColourPop. I then promptly placed a second order. I may have a problem. I won’t tell if you don’t.

Seeing as this post would be as long as my Monday has been if I posted everything together, I’ve decided to break it up into bite sized portions. Let’s start with the eyeshadows, shall we?

Formula: The shadows are all a cream to powder type finish. They apply incredibly smooth with either finger or brush and blend out like a dream.

Texture: There are a few textures in the range – mattes, shimmers and glitters. They vary in pigmentation but I’ve yet to come across a shade that was less than exemplary.

colour pop eyeshadow

colour pop eyeshadowcolour pop eyeshadowcolour pop eyeshadowcolour pop eyeshadow

There are quite a few stand-out shades among the bunch – Bill, So Quiche and I Heart This are regulars in my routine. Meow makes for a gorgeous taupe one-shadow eye look. Roulette and Cop a Feel are solid basic neutrals while Mooning and Effect can be used for a twist on the typical smokey eye. Of course, Fantasy is one of the most beautiful of the bunch – it’s one of the loveliest purples with a stunning indigo duo-chrome. It looks especially fantastic when paired with Lace for a dramatic purple look.

Overall, I’d say for a price point of $5.00, you really can’t go wrong here. The branding is fun, the product is outstanding and the color selection is immense. I can’t wait to add more to my growing collection!

 

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Skin Care for Acne Prone Skin

Sponsored post in collaboration with tarte Cosmetics.

tarte maracuja oil skin care

There is nothing worse than waking up one glorious morning to find that your skin has exploded into a galaxy of not-so-sparkly blemishes. Being a certified zit factory, I have experienced this all too often and have a few tricks up my sleeve. So, what are the best ways to calm acne prone skin and speed up the pimple-healing process?

Start From the Inside Out.

There are many reasons your skin may be prone to breakouts, but some common factors start with the inside. Things like dehydration, diet and hormones can play a huge part in those little “friends” on your face (and body).

I’m preaching to myself as much as the next person when I say make sure you’re drinking plenty of liquids – water is best, but green teas are also a good alternative. Limit your saturated fat intake (sorry, pizza) and pay special attention to your skin during “that time of the month”. Painful cystic acne especially may be the result of hormone changes, so a visit to your physician might be in order.

Finally, get some rest. I’m convinced a good night’s sleep can do more for your body than all the potions in the world.

Take a Hands Off Approach.

The hardest part of dealing with pesky pimples is keeping the area clean so you don’t spread bacteria and make the problem worse. Always wash hands thoroughly before touching your face – and then limit contact to when you are cleansing and treating the problem areas. NO PICKING (easier said than done, I know).

Cleanse and Treat.

I’ve found it’s best to keep it simple when dealing with acne prone skin. Here are a few of my favorite skin care products to get me through a breakout.

  • Cleanser. A mild, gentle cleanser (no fragrance is key) does wonders for removing makeup and keeping the skin clean. If you’re very oily use a gel cleanser, but otherwise I would stick to a cream or milk formulation to avoid stripping the skin of much-needed oils (more on that in a sec).
  • Spot treatment. For whiteheads and pimples, I like to use an all-natural spot treatment by Osmia Organics. It’s gentle on the skin and can easily be worn under makeup without causing flakiness.
  • Facial oil. It may sound counterintuitive, but facial oils can do absolute WONDERS for balancing out the complexion and preventing spots in the first place. My go-to is tarte Maracuja Oil. It contains vitamin c and essential fatty acids to help hydrate and repair, is the perfect lightweight texture, and absorbs easily into skin. Adding a face oil into your routine is the one step I recommend most to prevent the over-production of oil and to soothe the skin (it also helps makeup apply incredibly smoothly)!
  • Moisturizer. If your skin tends to be on the dry side, be sure to add a good moisturizer. Again, something fragrance free and minimal on the ingredients is best for problem skin.
  • Intensive treatments. For cystic acne or pimples that are prone to scarring, I like to use a benzoyl peroxide based product. My favorite is La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo, as it doesn’t dry the skin around the area out if used sparingly. Don’t overdo it – just apply a tiny amount of product right on top of the spot. I’m also a big fan of Lush’s Mask of Magnaminty to use when you feel problem areas creeping up.

What are your best tricks for keeping skin healthy & clear?

*This post is sponsored by tarte Cosmetics. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of tarte Cosmetics. Learn more about the brand here!

 

 

 

 

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GLO MINERALS LUXE FOUNDATION

It’s no secret that I am an avid hoarder tester of foundations. I have a love for anything that promises to make me look hashtag-flawless. So, when the Glo Minerals LUXE liquid foundation landed on my desk, you know I was on that.

Glo Minerals Luxe Foundation

If you want to see my first impression, feel free to watch here.

 

Now, onto the details. I’ve been wearing this foundation for about a week now through weather that has ranged from 38-70 degrees (welcome to oklahoma winter). I have to say, I am pretty pleased with the overall results. It’s not the longest lasting foundation on my combo/oily skin, but it gives the perfect medium coverage and is fairly easy to build if you need a bit more throughout the day. If I were to compare it, I would say it reminds me of Nars Sheer Glow with a dewier finish.

Before applying foundation

Before Applying Foundation (OBVS!!)

After

After Applying LUXE (No Primer/Powder)

As for the formulation, LUXE is a water based mineral foundation. It contains some moisturizing ingredients along with small amounts of antioxidants and green tea extract. It also has “diamond powder” technology (don’t worry, there is no vampire-glitter effect happening here) and an spf of 15.

I would say this would be a fantastic foundation for slightly dry to normal skin types. My combination skin handles it well in the winter months, but I imagine it wouldn’t hold up once we hit the 90-100 degree days of summer.  Another bonus for me is that the shade range actually covers the palest among us (read: me), which is something I have yet to find in a liquid mineral foundation. I have the shade porcelain, but there are 8 shades to choose from.

What’s YOUR favorite dewey finish foundation?

*This product was submitted for review. This is not a sponsored post; all opinions are 100% my very own!

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A WELL PLANNED NEW YEAR | THE BEST DAY PLANNERS FOR 2015

As a freelancer, my time is spent juggling schedules and projects. It’s no surprise that I come in to every new year with lofty dreams of perfect organizational tools. While I know I will always struggle to maintain a calendar, it is something of a necessity for my life. This year, I went on a little hunt for some of my favorite day planners and calendars and I’m pleased to report quite a few caught my attention.

best 2015 planner

Obviously, my tastes are running toward the black and gold prints (but most of these come in other options, as well). What I love about the Day Designer (which, incidentally, was designed right here in Oklahoma City) and the “Best is Yet to Come” planner from Horacio Printing is that they both include incredibly mindful elements. Things like places to prioritize the important things in life (Day Designer) or intentionally incorporate generosity into your day (Horacio) are details often not included in traditional day planners.

If simple and to the point is more your style, the bottom row options may be just your thing. I love the variety of patterns and sizes of the Typo planner from Cotton On come in. The dotted Sugar Paper planner can be found at Target and is essentially the same style as the organizer I used for 2014. Its flat design is easy to carry and has loads of space to write in.

I still haven’t quite decided which of these beauties will be mine for the year, but I’ve still got a week, right?

Here’s to a well-planned New Year!

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SMALL BUSINESS GIFT GUIDE

For those of us who hop on the gift-giving wagon during the Christmas season, we know how fun / impossible it can be to think of great gifts. Sometimes the easiest thing really is to stock up on gift cards for Mr. Difficult. Isn’t it fantastic, though, when you find just the right gift? For me, it’s even better when I know my purchase is not only going to make the recipient happy but my dollars are going to support a small business.

For most small businesses, Christmas is when we have the best chance of sharing our creations with the most people. There is something really special about knowing your countless hours spent designing, testing, and eventually crafting a product are not wasted – that your items are headed into the homes of others to be enjoyed. So this Christmas, here are a few smaller businesses that may have just the perfect gift for that loved one on your list.

• MICAH HAMILTON •

Micah HamiltonMicah is one of the quietest and sweetest people I’ve ever met. She’s also one of the most talented girls I know. She is truly a craftsman (woman? person?) and her work just oozes with the thought she’s put into it. You’ll be doing yourself a favor by checking out her work.

 

• ERIN MERRYWEATHER •

Erin MerryweatherErin has been an inspiration of mine for a long time. Eight years ago, she gave me one of the biggest opportunities to really pursue my craft by allowing me to participate in the raddest art show in Oklahoma, The Girlie Show, where she was one of the co-founders. These days, she’s making some amazing classic sterling silver and 14K gold pieces that I think are so versatile and beautiful. She sells locally in OKC at DNA Galleries and you can also find her on Instagram.

• PEMBERLEY JONES •

Pemberley JonesPemberley is a blogger who turned her passion for natural beauty products into a full fledged online shop. She carries some of my favorite brands (Osmia and Meow Meow Tweet make a few of my go-to products) and her store is ever-expanding. For the holidays, she’s put together a few favorites that come adorably packaged – perfect for anyone who loves a good pampering!

• LAPIN AND ME •

Lapin and MeLapin and Me is a small online boutique started by mother-daughter duo Madeleine and Delphine. They have curated a collection of some of the most adorable children’s toys and goodies. Although it’s tailored toward children, I won’t lie, I’ve got my eye on a few items for myself!

• Frostbeard Studios •

Frostbeard StudioThis married couple from Minneapolis make the most quirky selection of handcrafted candles in their online etsy shop. I have quite a few of their scents on my wish list, but I have to say that one called Old Books is calling my name loud. From Wizards to Sherlock to time-travelling Sassenach’s, there is a scent for every book nerd on your list!

•· P.S. Head over to watch the latest from How to be Fancy on YouTube and there’s a chance to win an adorable bracelet from another of my small business favorites! ·•

List below your favorite makers – I’d love to add to my collection!

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