Monday, February 24, 2014

Versatile Spring Trend Looks with Pantone's Color of the Year

As always, this spring is all about color. And the color on everyone's lips -- and eyes and nails -- is Radiant Orchid. Last year was Emerald, the year before was Tangerine, and this year, the vivid, fuchsia-infused shade of purple has been crowned Pantone's Color of the Year.

So for today's post, I decided I would do two incredibly versatile looks using Radiant Orchid, based on some trends that are going to be hot this spring and summer. 

For both of these looks, I wanted to create a clean, fresh-faced glow, so I avoided liquid foundation altogether. I went in with my Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer and covered up any blemishes or discoloration, primarily around my nose and on some spots on my forehead, as well as on my chin. Then, I took my Physicians Formula Mineral Wear Talc-Free Loose Powder and applied that all over my face with a kabuki brush. This powder was the very first face product I ever owned, and it's amazing for those "no-makeup" makeup days. 

After this, I gave my skin a moment to set while I applied my brows. I completely forgot to grab the brow product for the photo, but I used my Anastasia DipBrow Pomade. If you click here you can see my photos, swatches, and thoughts about this product! This spring and summer, thick brows are definitely in, so take this time to grow them out! I know I definitely need to let mine grow, and this is the time to do it. 

After I finished with my brows, I went back in with my concealer and cleaned up underneath the brow, just to create a nice, crisp line. Then for the cheeks, I used a new product: the Rimmel Stay Blushed Liquid Cheek Tint in the shade "Peach Flush." It claims to be a liquid, but I'd say it has more of a mousse-like texture. It glides well over powder, and I was impressed by how it applied! This is my first time using it, so hopefully I'll have more thoughts on it soon. Finally, I took The Balm Bahama Mama Bronzer and did some light contouring. 

Now, moving onto Look #1, which is all about the eyes! Two trends that are big this year are a sheer wash of color and sultry, smokey black liner. Luckily, achieving both looks is a piece of cake! 

For the shadow, I took the L'Oreal Infallible 24HR Eye Shadow in "Burst Into Bloom" and feathered it all over the lid using a fluffy blending brush. This color is perfect to match Radiant Orchid! I also took this shadow on a small pencil brush and blended it under the lower lashline. This is my first time using the L'Oreal Infallible Eye Shadows, and it certainly is interesting to work with. I then used the lightest cream shade from the Wet n Wild Eye Shadow Trio in "Silent Treatment" to blend around the edges and to highlight under the browbone. I also brought this color into the inner corner to bring some light to the inner corners. This is an important step to prevent the eyeliner from overpowering your eyes!

Next, I took my trusty Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner and lined both my upper and lower lashlines. I also used this product to line the upper and lower waterlines. Then, I took a small detail brush and smudged it out, adding the darkest shade from the Wet n Wild trio to add even more smokiness to the look. From here, I applied mascara, and the eyes were done!

For the lips, I applied the Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter in "Peach Parfait," with just the tiniest dab of the Maybelline Color Elixir in "Mandarin Rapture."

I want to say this next look is all about the lips, but it's not. Both the eyes and the lips are eye-catching. This next look focuses on graphic liner and bold lips.

But before we move onto the next look, I want you to pause and make a promise to yourself. Say it with me: "I will not obsess over perfection." Now say that three more times. Why do I say that? Because with this next look, if you obsess over making it perfect, you will drive yourself absolutely insane!

I look so annoyed in both of these photos, and as Andrew was taking them, he was telling me to stop looking so grumpy. Why? Because I obsess. I am known for obsessing over small things like eyeliner symmetry, and this look was no exception. 

First things first, I took my concealer and applied this all over my lid to get rid of any discoloration. Then, I took the lightest shade from the Wet n Wild Eye Shadow Trio and applied it all over the lid and up to the browbone. Easy enough, right? Well, hold on tight, because the liner is coming!

First, I used the same Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner that I used above to create a basic winged liner. For my tutorial on how to do that, click here! From here, I simply followed the crease. I used a precise artist's brush, and held my breath. Take your time on the liner, but as I said, don't obsess. For myself, I stopped at the edge of my iris, but you can take in the line as far as you like! If you make a mistake, stop, breathe, and go back in with the light cream shadow that you used on the lid and run it over the liner. This will help to blur the mistake so you can start again. Have fun with it! Graphic liner is a huge trend, not only this season, but this year. It's everywhere! Find a style that's fun and master it. The graphic liner I've done is very simple, and is a great way to start off any graphic liner look. I then took a pencil brush and the same L'Oreal Infallible 24HR Eye Shadow and ran this under my lower lashline, up the edge of the winged liner, for a pop of color. To help brighten up the eyes, I used the Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal Eyeliner in "Nude" on the waterline, then applied mascara on both the upper and lower lashes!

Once you've completely the liner, the eyes are done! For the lips, I applied the Maybelline Color Sensational Vivids Lipstick in "Brazen Berry," which is another great match for the 2014 Color of the Year!

The great thing about both of these looks is that they are super versatile. For example, switch out a black liner for a colored liner (like the amazing new Stila Smudge Stick colors that were released for spring!), and you can have an amazing colored graphic liner look that is sure to have people asking "How did you do that?!" 

While Radiant Orchid isn't my favorite color in the world (I much prefer a blue-ish lilac), I had a ton of fun with these looks. Every year I think to myself "There is no way that's the color of the year. No one is going to like it!" And sure enough, by mid-summer, the Color of the Year is everywhere. 

The most important thing about this season's trends? Have fun with them. Spring and summer is all about playing with different looks and different colors. The runways were whimsical this season -- let your makeup be too!

- d. 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Teens for Jeans -- Extended to February 28th!

I absolutely cannot believe I forgot about Teens for Jeans this year, and because I just remembered, I'm now up at 4:30 in the morning frantically typing this to get the word out. Teens for Jeans is a cause that is very close to my heart, as I worked for Aeropostale for 2 and a half years. It was my first job, and I began working there as a senior in high school. One of the most amazing things about the company is that they spend so much time giving back to the community, and Teens for Jeans is a prime example of what they do for the community.

What is Teens For Jeans? Teens For Jeans is an annual campaign run by, where you can drop off your new or gently-loved jeans of any sizes at an Aeropostale or P.S. by Aeropostale location. Over 1.5 million kids and teens are homeless -- and that's just in the U.S.

If you are in the United States, Canada, or Puerto Rico, you can participate! All you have to do is drop your jeans off at any Aeropostale or P.S. by Aeropostale location. Click here to find a location near you!

I honestly can't believe I forgot about Teens For Jeans this year, but I guess since I'm not longer working at Aero, it hasn't been first thing on my mind. However, since I first found out about this cause, it has always been in my heart. Every time I go to downtown San Diego, where I was just the other day, I see homeless people on every corner, with ripped clothing. Once while I was in Chicago, I saw someone at the train station trying to keep warm, who was using duct tape to keep his clothes together. I wanted nothing more than to give him the shirt off my back.

Homelessness is a lot more than the "crazies" you see yelling at random people in run-down neighborhoods. In your school, in your work place, just about anywhere, you may see someone who is homeless, and you may never know it.

Last year, and Aeropostale collected enough jeans to clothe almost 1 out of 2 homeless teens and kids. This is a great cause.

If you have the time and the jeans, jump in on this! You'll even get 25% off a brand new pair of jeans from Aeropostale for each pair that you donate. They have extended the deadline to February 28th. Make a difference! 

- d. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

TMI Tuesday + My first video?!

After many requests, I finally posted my first video! I decided that there would be no better first video than a TMI video, so you could all get to know me better. I am definitely a lot more comfortable in front of a keyboard than I am in front of a camera, so I suspect that videos won't be as common as blog posts from me. However, this was a lot of fun to film, and a lot of hard work to edit and publish. 

I tag YOU! If you are reading this post or watching this video, I AM TAGGING YOU! I want to see some of your answers down in the comments below, or step out of your comfort zone and do a video! It's such a fun tag, and I hope you all enjoyed getting to know me a little better!

1: What are you wearing?
2: Ever been in love?
3: Ever had a terrible breakup?
4: How tall are you?
5: How much do you weigh?
6: Any tattoos?
7: Any piercings?
8: OTP?
9: Favourite show?
10: Favourite bands?
11: Something you miss? .
12: Favourite song?
13: How old are you?
14: Zodiac sign?
15: Quality you look for in a partner?
16: Favourite Quote?
17: Favourite actor?
18: Favourite color?
19: Loud music or soft?
20: Where do you go when you're sad?
21: How long does it take you to shower?
22: How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?
23: Ever been in a physical fight?
24: Turn on?
25: Turn off?
26: The reason I joined Youtube?
27: Fears?
28: Last thing that made you cry?
29: Last time you said you loved someone?
30: Meaning behind your Youtube Name?
31: Last book you read?
32: The book you're currently reading?
33: Last show you watched?
34: Last person you talked to?
35: The relationship between you and the person you last texted?
36: Favourite food?
37: Place you want to visit?
38: Last place you were?
39: Do you have a crush?
40: Last time you kissed someone?
41: Last time you were insulted?
42: Favourite flavour of sweet?
43: What instruments do you play??
44: Favourite piece of jewellery?
45: Last sport you played?
46: Last song you sang?
47: Favourite pick up line?
48: Have you ever used it?
49: Last time you hung out with anyone?
50: Who should answer these questions next?

- d.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

How To Prevent or Treat Styes

This post certainly isn't going to be a glamorous one, but let's be honest. Styes are not uncommon, and they are certainly not fun. Oftentimes, styes can be caused by makeup buildup, so if you wear makeup often, you could be a target for styes!

When I was 15, I joined colorguard, which meant lots of heavy, dramatic makeup. I would come home from practice around 8 or 9, exhausted, and I would just go straight to sleep with my makeup on from the school day. That year, I had a major issue with styes. It was painful and embarrassing, and I know it isn't fun to deal with.

Let me start with this: I'm not a doctor. I don't ever intend to be a doctor. This post is based on my personal experience. These are tips I have discovered through lots of research and that work for me when I have had styes or stye symptoms. If you are having severe symptoms, please go see a professional.

Now that we have that out of the way, let's talk about how to prevent and treat styes!

What is a stye? A stye is a swollen lump, similar to a cystic pimple, that forms primarily on the edge of the eyelids, although sometimes they can form underneath the eyelids.

What causes a stye? A stye sometimes forms when the wrong kind of bacteria eats the dead skin cells around the eye. It can also form when the tear duct or eyelash root gets clogged by dead skin, makeup, or bacteria. Most commonly, styes occur due to a combination of the two.

If you think you might have a stye but you aren't sure, I suggest clicking here. But if you're squeamish, beware! It isn't exactly pleasant to look at.

Now the question that is on everyone's mind: How can I prevent styes? 

  1. Remove ALL of your makeup at night. Don't skip out because you're too tired or lazy to fuss with it. Just do it. Be very particular about it, and make sure to get it all off. 
  2. Use baby shampoo to wash your eyelids. Use just a few drops of tear-free baby shampoo and mix it with a cup of water. This will help dilute it to make it safer for use around the eyes. After mixing it up, take a cotton ball or cotton pad, soaked in the solution, and gently wipe this over your eyelids, focusing on the upper and lower lashlines.
  3. Do NOT, under any circumstances, share makeup or brushes that have not been properly sanitized. Some products, like mascara cannot be sanitized, so don't even think about it! Sharing makeup spreads bacteria, and can not only cause styes, but acne breakouts.
Prevention is key, but on the off chance you may be on this page because you already have a stye, or you can feel one coming on, I have a solution for you as well!

How can I get rid of a stye?
  1. Take a clean wash cloth and soak it in warm water to make a warm compress. Place it on the affected eye until the wash cloth cools down. Repeat multiple times a day, but make sure to use a clean wash cloth each time!
  2. Make hot and cold green tea compress. Green tea is an anti-inflammatory filled with antioxidants. Make yourself a nice hot cup of green tea, and after the tea bag has cooled down a bit, apply this to the eye. Do this while it is still warm, but not so hot that it will burn you. You can also put the tea bag in the fridge or freezer for a cool, refreshing compress that will help reduce swelling even more! I almost always do this step whenever I have a stye or any kind of hormonal cystic acne.
  3. Try to avoid wearing makeup. If you absolutely must wear makeup, make sure to use clean brushes and to sanitize your makeup. Like I said before, mascara cannot be sanitized, so I would suggest purchasing a new mascara if you can. But no makeup is the best makeup when you have a stye.
  4. On the same note, clean and sanitize your makeup brushes before applying any makeup to the eye, and make sure to clean your brushes after! To learn to clean and sanitize your brushes, I suggest visiting my blog post, "How I Clean/Disinfect My Makeup Brushes & DIY Brush Drying Rack."
  5. Use stye eye drops. When I was younger and got styes a lot, this stuff was my holy grail. Use them just like ordinary eye drops, and not only will it soothe the pain caused by a stye, but it will help to get rid of it! Use just a couple times a day, in combination with the other steps, and your stye will be gone in no time!
More than anything, the #1 thing I can recommend for both prevention and treatment of styes is to NEVER touch your eyes unless your hands are clean. I know it can be hard to resist sometimes, especially if you tend to touch your face a lot, but the more aware you become of it, the easier it will become to control.

Usually, this is where I would include a photo, but I can't think of anything less pleasant than adding a picture of a stye to the end of this post. 

- d. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Taylor Swift's Grammy's Look with Drugstore Products

One of my closest friends recently texted me saying that she was totally loving Taylor Swift's look at the Grammy's. Both she and I absolutely love Taylor, so of course I had to do the look for her!

As always, Taylor looked absolutely glowing and gorgeous at the Grammy's this year. She kept everything fairly subtle, with a pop of color in the liner. Colored liner is a huge trend right now, and she's proving that it's possible to wear colored liner but still keep things subtle. 

The first thing I noticed is how healthy and radiant Taylor's skin appeared, and I wanted to make sure that I achieved the same glow. So I first applied my L'Oreal True Match Foundation in the shade C2 (which I'm starting to worry is getting a little too dark for me! I need to see the sun a bit more...), then I applied Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer on any discolored areas or blemishes. The great thing about this concealer is that it is both creamy and blendable, as well as full-coverage and illuminating. I used the Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil in "Dark Brown" to very, very lightly and naturally fill in my brows. I made sure to blend out my brows with the brush that comes attached to this product, to create a more natural look. From here, I moved onto the eyes to allow the product to settle before powdering.

She has a stunning silver smokey eye with blue winged liner, and for this look, I challenged myself to use only drugstore products. For the shadows, I used the Wet n Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette 5 Pan in "Tunnel Vision," which I believe is actually a new release for this brand.


To begin, I used the Rimmel Scandaleyes Shadow Stick in "Whiteness White" (come on, Rimmel, what's up with these names?). I used it all over the lid, stopping at the crease, and also focusing it on the inner corner. Then I blended it out with my finger to prevent creasing. 

From here, I mixed together the white and the lightest shimmery silver shade from the Wet n Wild palette mentioned earlier and packed it all over the lid. Then, I took the medium gray, which I'd say is more a satin than a shimmer, and buffed it all around the outside of the lid color to make the next color easier to blend. I took the black on a pencil brush and, with a very light hand, focused this in the crease, before going back in with the medium gray color to blend it all together. I then wiped off my pencil brush and took the medium gray color along the lower lashline, being careful to blend it out to create a smokier effect. After I was happy with the way everything looked, I went in with the matte white and used it in the inner corner, over the white shadow stick, as well as very lightly to blend out the crease, and up to the browbone. 

From here I moved onto liner. I did an entire blog post on how to do winged liner, and this look is no different. I used the Milani Liquid Eye Retractable Eyeliner Pencil in "08 Blue" to line the upper lashline and create my wing. I also ran this along the lower lashline and smudged it out a bit. Keep in mind that this liner is NOT waterline safe because it does have glitter particles in it. On the upper waterline, I used the Milani Liquid Eye Eyeliner Pencil in "01 Black" (which is the traditional pencil, not the retractable one), and on the lower waterline, I used the Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Kajal Liner in "Nude," although, from what I can tell, Taylor Swift's makeup artist may have actually used a white pencil rather than a nude.

Then to top it all off, I used my Maybelline The Mega Plush Volum' Express Mascara and really built up the lashes. Taylor has very dark lashes, and she is probably wearing falsies, but I chose to just really coat my lashes, focusing on the root to really make them appear dark and thick.

From here, I moved back to the face. I went back in with my Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer and cleaned up under the eyes. I also ran this concealer along the tops of my cheekbones to add an illuminated effect. 

After blending the concealer out, I took a stippling brush and very lightly set everything with the Physicians Formula Glow & Mood Boosting Powder in "Translucent" to give me an all-over glow. The great thing about this powder is that it doesn't make you look oily, but adds just enough of an iridescence to help blur any imperfections and enhance your bone structure, while giving just a hint of color. I don't know about it being a "mood booster," but it sure makes my skin look happy!

For the cheeks, Taylor has just a slight hint of color, with very little noticeable contouring. I took the Maybelline Fit Me Blush in "Light Rose" and applied this directly under the cheekbone, where I would normally place a bronzer to contour. I then buffed it in an upward motion to get some color onto the cheekbone. This is a great trick to give yourself a subtle contour while still adding a natural flush to your skin.

Finally, the lips. I took the Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer and applied this all over my lips, to mute out my natural pigmentation. I didn't want anything getting in the way of this gorgeous pink color. I used Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick in the shade "Latino."

This look is perfect for almost any occasion, and I think that it'll be great for Valentine's Day! The lipstick is just subtle enough to add a hint of color without being high maintenance. No one wants to be touching up their makeup in the middle of a date! Or if you're like me and your significant other is working on Valentine's Day, then you don't want to worry about your makeup while you cuddle with your cat. ;)

What are you doing for Valentine's Day?

- d. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Catching Fire Giveaway Winners!

I just wanted to drop in really quickly to congratulate the Catching Fire giveaway winners, Anna and Sarah H! I have contacted you directly through the email you provided in the Rafflecopter widget. 

Please keep in mind that if someone has contacted you asking for sensitive information (such as credit card info, social security numbers, etc), that person is NOT me! I will never ask you for more information than necessary, so that I can send you your prizes.

A big thanks to everyone who signed up, and I'm planning to do more giveaways soon! I was absolutely blown away by the number of people who were interested in the giveaway. Subscribe to my blog via Bloglovin' in order to stay up-to-date with my blog, and to know whenever I have exciting news! 

- d. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, February 2, 2014

January Favorites!

I feel like January has gone on for months. I honestly couldn't wait for it to end. The January gloom is certainly getting to me, especially now. As I type, I'm sitting in a hotel room in Chicago, where it is currently 30 degrees Fahrenheit, and snowing bucketfuls. While I'm missing the warmer San Diego weather, I'm definitely happy to have this change. It's lovely to wake up and see snow everywhere, although it's not as lovely when I have to walk around in it!

I didn't have a ton of favorites this month, but let's get started anyway! Most of these photos are the stock photos from Google images, since I'm not home and I don't have all of these products in their packaging right now, and they're all in little not-so-photogenic travel containers.

Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette. Obviously, this is no surprise. I've been using this palette almost every single day that I've worn makeup since purchasing it. It's such a beautiful palette and so easy to travel with. I've already raved about this palette so I won't go on too long, but if you'd like to see a full review of the palette, just click here!

Naturally Soothing Oatmeal & Shea Butter Body Lotion. My skin has been so unhappy this month, especially right now in the cold Chicago winds and snow. I went out to the drugstore and was hunting for a cheap alternative to my Vaseline Repairing Moisture Lotion wasn't doing the job. I love the Oatmeal & Shea Butter Body Wash so I figured I might as well give it a shot! It has done a great job at locking in moisture as well as giving some extra hydration to my skin.

Origins Checks and Balances Frothy Face Wash. Interestingly enough, while the rest of my body has been dry and itchy, my face has been a very happy camper. I started using this face wash after falling in love with the Clear Improvements Charcoal Mask, and I'm pretty sure the skin on my face has never been happier. This face wash is fairly basic, and it really gets the job done. It's great for lazy days when I don't feel like removing my makeup before cleansing, because it removes everything completely without drying my skin out. This face wash is fantastic for combination skin, and with the next product on my favorites list, I've found the perfect combination for my skin!

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Face Moisturizer. While I do have combination skin, I generally have fairly dry-combination skin. My nose and chin are often pretty oily, while my cheeks and forehead are very dry. This moisturizer really helps to not only control the oil, but hydrate my dry skin. It is very light, and fragrance free, so it's great for sensitive skin. It's a very basic moisturizer, but sometimes getting back to basics is the best thing you can do for your skin!

Gold Canyon Lavender Chamomile Candle. For Christmas, my mom got my entire family different candles. My mom knows me well, because she knows that when I am stressed out and anxious, I light candles! This candle has been lit almost every night since I got it, not necessarily because I'm stressed, but because I love the scent! It really helps me wind down after a long day, and it's really calming to burn while I relax in bed.

I'm really excited about all of the new face products I've tried in the past couple of months, and I'm planning to do a skin routine post soon. I'll be back to the usual blogging as soon as I'm back home!

- d.