Beauty

Favorite products for hair and makeup

Dabbling with designer makeup brands has become quite an eye-opening experience. I think there are 3 classes of makeup: drugstore, high end and designer. By designer I mean, $85 for a Christian Dior lipstick, because that’s a category all its own. When I first started trying and investigating Marc Jacobs Beauty, I was placing it in the high-end category, because his products seemed comparable in price point. However, if you really do some digging, you might want to bump it up to the designer category. Let’s chat the Marc Jacobs Eye-Conic Eyeshadow Palette in Glambition.

This palette comes with 7 gorgeous shades and includes 3 mattes, 3 shimmers and 1 glitter.

Price: Much like when I looked at the price/product amount of the Marc Jacobs Coconut Gel Highlighter, I found that the amount of product you’re getting is definitely less than other popular brands, meaning it’s actually more expensive than it seems. To compare…

Marc Jacobs Eye-Conic Eyeshadow Palette = 5.95 grams for $49

Urban Decay Naked Heat Eyeshadow Palette = 15.6 grams for $54

You’re getting 1/3 the amount of product for pretty much the same price. So, is it worth it?

Quality: The swatches on the left are one swipe without primer. On the right I blended them out with an eyeshadow brush after a few minutes. You can see that they really don’t want to budge and have great staying power. The only two shades that I was slightly disappointed with are Over the Top and Glamour. Over the Top swatches a little streaky and doesn’t blend quite as easily as the other colors, but it’s still very workable. Glamour swatches beautifully but loses some of the pigmentation as you blend it out. This isn’t to say these colors are bad, they simply aren’t as impressive as the others.

Verdict: If you are an eyeshadow enthusiast, I think this palette is worth the money. I’ve pretty much worn this palette exclusively since I received it to test out from Influenster. I also appreciate how nice the packaging is, especially considering the price point.

I do not think this palette is a good pick for you if you go through makeup quickly because you’re getting1/3 the amount of product you might get with another brand. I also don’t think this is a good pick for you if you just want a good basics palette. If you want something that gets the job done without breaking the bank, my two favorites are this Neutrogena quad or this matte e.l.f. palette.

I hope this was helpful if you’ve been curious about the launch of the new Eye-Conic palettes. There are 6 total palettes so if you’re interested, there’s probably a color palette for you!

 

After a lot of trial and error, I have finally figured out my perfect skincare routine to help clear blackheads. I really love skincare and have quite a lot, but I notice a definite difference in my skin if I’m not regularly using the following products. If you suffer from blackheads, I don’t think you should run out and get this whole regime because that’s unrealistic and expensive. If a product sounds intriguing though, give that a try. Be patient and you’ll figure out your perfect blackhead-clearing cocktail too.

Skinfix Foaming Clay Cleanser: Skinfix recently sent me this cleanser to try and I couldn’t be more thankful. This cleanser is a gentler version of the Origins Checks and Balances Frothy Face Wash. It has a great lather and makes your skin feel super clean without drying it out. If you’re more oily though, the Origins might be a good option.

Pixi Glow Tonic: I used to think Glow Tonic was overhyped. Wrong. It’s worth all the hype. Whenever I use this, I’m shocked at just how much dirt and oil is still left on my skin after a face wipe and double cleansing. Since this is strong, I’d start with every other day, then work your way up.

Kate Somerville Anti Bac Lotion: I love this lotion so much I could cry. For the last two years or so, I’ve had the worst clogged pores around my chin and nothing would seem to help. They weren’t quite blackheads, but they were causing a lot of uneven texture. Finally, I picked this up on the recommendation of Tiffany D. Within two weeks, the clogged pores on my chin were clear and the blackheads on my nose had diminished.  I only use the slightest bit on my chin and nose so it should last awhile. If your skin reacts well to Benzoyl Peroxide, you’ll love this lotion.

e.l.f. Nourishing Night Cream: For a long time now I’ve been using various No7 night creams, which I love, but wanted to change it up. While the price tag may be small in the world of skincare, this night cream still hydrates and nourishes your skin for nighttime repair. I think I might need something thicker come winter but right now, it’s perfect.

Philosophy Microdelivery Detoxifying Oxygen Peel: Let’s start with the price – yes $62 for a mask is steep. However, professional facials can run you upwards of $100, and I can honestly say this two-step mask gives you visible results. Read the directions carefully so you layer the products correctly. This mask opens your pores and pulls all of the gross stuff out. You might experience a breakout the next day since this mask will bring everything to the surface. For me, this is totally worth it because it helps deep clean so my Glow Tonic and Anti Bac can really work their magic on the top.

I hope that maybe one of these products sounds like it might work for you if you suffer from pesky blackheads. Sound off down below if you have any lingering questions!

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Finally, a non-Nordstrom Sale post. You’re welcome. Today I have a very quick review on some makeup from Jane Iredale. I received this complimentary kit from Influenster to test out and unfortunately, it was a big miss.

I really like the concept of this kit and think it’s great to have everything in one place. However, the foundation and blush are both dry and chalky. While the eyeshadows are super buttery and pigmented, they’re $22 a piece, which is way too steep for me. You can easily get a whole palette for that amount of money, so I’d have a hard time justifying these. The lip and cheek stain is cute (top swatch), but didn’t seem very practical.

While it’s much more fun to read and write positive reviews, I hope this was helpful so you know what to skip!

For the last 9 years I was in a long and faithful relationship with my Cortex straightener. It was a $30 straightener from TJMaxx, nothing fancy. That straightener got me through high school AND college – dances, countless Friday nights and was my roommate’s favorite straightener as well. Sadly, our relationship had to come to an end. When any hair tool gets that old, the heat indicator can break, causing serious damage to your hair.

Since I absolutely love Drybar, I thought I’d make an investment that can hopefully last another few years. I got my straightener a few months ago from Sephora. It came with two full-size products for $150. It was a great value, but The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Tressed to Impress Collection is even better. For $154 you get:

  1. Tress Press Straightener
  2. Sparkling Soda Shine Mist
  3. Triple Sec (read my thoughts on that here)
  4. A travel size Chaser Shine Cream
  5. 2 Hold Me Hair Clips


I love how quickly the iron heats up, as well as how it can give my hair a wave because of the rounded edges. Do I think everyone needs this flat iron? No. If you don’t straighten your hair that often or if you have very fine hair, you can definitely get away with a more affordable option. However, if you need a new flat iron and know you’ll get the use, this is an amazing flat iron, and at an even better price.

I’ve been going to visit my sister for years in Denver and every time, I overpack. I wanted to challenge myself this time around to one-carry on bag, and I’m proud to say that my mini suitcase and 1 Longchamp tote did the trick (although if you saw my Insta Story, you’ll also know I delivered a medium Lou Malnati’s deep dish pizza).

Here are my top 5 tips for packing light:

  1. 50 Shades of Grey: When you’re going on a trip, pick a color scheme. Obviously for this trip, I went with black, white, grey and also have two pink tees. Try sticking to three colors. Jewelry can also change an outfit in a snap. One black dress can instantly transform into a new outfit with a necklace swap.
  2. Dress it up: I don’t mean get fancy, though. Dresses save room because it’s a whole outfit, minus the pants. And as Matt Bellassai has taught us, pants are the worst. I like packing t-shirt and shift dresses for an easy look you can wear during the day or out to dinner.
  3. Wear your bulk: I thought this was a pretty self explanatory, but I’m still shocked at the number of people in airports wearing shorts and flip flops. Also, planes are cold. Save room in your suitcase by wearing your gym shoes, sweaters, jeans or jackets on the plane.
  4. Get it when you get there: While this isn’t always ideal, keep in mind that it’s certainly an option. If you’re using a carry on, you’ll have to get a razor when you get to your destination anyway. It’s also a great time to pick up Suave shampoo/conditioner while you’re at the drugstore. A travel size of Pantene can run you a few bucks, and you’ll probably run out halfway through the week. Spend $1 on the less expensive stuff that’ll last you and your travel buddies the whole trip.
  5. Be realistic: This is the hardest one for me. I always think, “oh maybe we’ll go out and I’ll need this outfit,” but in the end I can make do with what I have. Plus, if you tell me you don’t rewear outfits on vacation, you’re lying.


Toiletries are the hardest part. Just one quart-size bag. Now’s the time when your 100 perks from Sephora come in handy. You’re on vacation – spend less time getting ready and more time having fun. Go light on the base, add lots of mascara and a bright gloss. Go for multi-purpose products like a cream stick.


I honestly can’t believe I did it. I also have three powders, but luckily those can be separate from the small constraints of the little plastic bag. I hope everyone’s July is off to a great start!

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