Saturday, November 29, 2014

November Beauty Empties

The end of 2014 seems to be flying by.  We have had parent/teacher conferences here, my husband started coaching basketball, my daughter is gearing up for competitive gymnastics season to start in December, and we've also had flu germs!  I've enjoyed these days off with family over Thanksgiving and decorating the house for the holidays.

Back at the end of July, I started 100 Days of Beauty and 100 Days of Empties with some other ladies on Instagram.  My 100 days ended at the beginning of November but I was determined to keep track until I hit 100 empties which I did right before Thanksgiving.  As always, I had some foil packets I used up and posted about on my Instagram but are not included in this empties post so it doesn't end up a gazillion hours long.

I inventoried all my beauty products today.  Woah!  I will be working on using up a lot of my skincare, haircare, and beauty and only purchasing minimal products or the necessities.  My backups of products are becoming a bit ridiculous.  I have also been using makeup long enough that I really do know what works for me and what some of my favorites are (especially skincare).  I need to stop buying every new product or skincare that doesn't work for my skin.  So, in 2015, I will be continuing my quest for empties.

Here are my empties for this month...

Loofah - My favorite ones are from either Ulta or The Body Shop.  I find they don't fall apart as fast as others do.  I'm not keeping them forever, but I've had some that fall apart after a few days!

Suave Body Wash in ocean breeze - I like the Suave body wash for the inexpensive price.  When I run out of Bath and Body Works, I usually just buy whatever is on sale.  I'm not picky about body wash, as I've said before.

Epielle Facial Cleansing Tissues - These were $1 at Big Lots.  They were okay for $1 and I have posted a few packs in my past months of empties.  I have returned back to my Sephora cleansing water which I love and will probably stick with.

Herbal Essences body wash in body burst - This was another sample from somewhere.  I think the scent is body burst although I'm not sure.  Again, it was fine for a body wash.  It was the type I like (versus the moisturizing lotion kind which I don't like - too greasy).

Real Chemistry Luminous 3 minute peel - This was a Birchbox sample and was a nice, gentle peel.  It was really cool because you put it on and then when you massaged, you could see your skin coming off.  It left my skin super soft!  Someday, when I use up some of my millions of skincare products,  I might purchase this.

Michael Todd cleanse and tone - This was a good cleanser but did not contain enough toner for my skin.  I still had to use a separate toner to keep my breakouts at bay.  For the price, I wouldn't purchase this specific cleanser because I don't like it enough.  I do want to try some other Michael Todd cleansers in the future.

Sephora cotton rounds - This is my first time using the Sephora brand and I really like them.  I judge cotton rounds based upon how fuzzy they are.  I always get the fuzz in my eyes and these are not fuzzy at all.  I would definitely repurchase these.

Juice Beauty Blemish Clearing Serum - This bottle lasted me forever!  I'm not entirely sure it kept my breakouts away.  I tend to have hormonal breakouts, mostly on my chin.  If you have more acne prone skin or small pimples in multiple places on your face, this might work really well for you.  I am not repurchasing for the time being.  If I see my skin getting worse without it, then I will repurchase.

BeeKind Body Lotion - This came from Birchbox or Ipsy one month.  It has a nice light scent of chamomile and honey.  It was a lighter weight lotion so I used it mostly on my arms and legs instead of my hands at night like I usually do with these small sample sizes.  I won't purchase because I have a million lotions.

Not Soap Radio body wash - I loved the lemon scent of this body wash.  It was a Birchbox sample and would be a definite splurge for a body wash.  But it would be worth it!  I might trade in some Birchbox points for this one!

Physicians Formula Organic Wear mascara - I bought this mascara because Tati (GlamLifeGuru) raves about it on her Youtube channel.  I don't get why she loves it so much.  It would be a nice mascara for a very natural or minimal makeup look.  But I have tried others that are so much better for my short little lashes (Mally Volumizing is my current favorite!).  I won't repurchase this one.

Naobay body radiance lotion - This was another sample from a beauty box or something.  Again, I used this on my arms and legs because it wasn't thick enough for my hands at night.  It had a nice subtle scent but it didn't wow me enough to hunt it down and purchase.

Camille Beckman Platinume Gold imperial repair hand therapy - Long name!  Awesome lotion!  This was a lemongrass vert and sparkling grapefruit scent and I loved it.  It was a nice thick lotion without being greasy for me to use before bed.  The scent is strong but I was okay with it because I loved the scent.  This would be another Birchbox splurge that would be totally worth it!

Neutrogena lip moisturizer - This is my favorite chapstick for nighttime.  I keep one of these in my bedside table to use before bed every night.  In the spirit of using up products, I will hold off on repurchasing this until I use up a few other chapsticks I have.  I will definitely repurchase this product  though!

If you made it all the way to this point, then you're awesome:)  I know these get long but I want to make sure I give thorough reviews for you all.

As always, feel free to follow me on Instagram or Twitter for other beauty and fashion related posts (among the random other things).  Both are @hmills79


*All opinions are my own.  All products were purchased with my own money.  I was not compensated in any way for this post.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

November Birchbox and Mini Reviews

I have really been loving my Birchboxes lately.  Lots of good products to try out, some of which I have really loved and have added to my wishlist.  I have also recently been using the Birchbox Men portion of the website to purchase items for the hubby.  He loves the brand Art of Shaving which they carry.  I'm able to use the coupons they send through email and earn more points for me to spend:)  Win for all!

Camille Beckman Platinume Gold Imperial Repair Hand Therapy - That is a crazy long name for some hand lotion!  But it is wonderful hand lotion.  I have a lemongrass and grapefruit scent which sounds crazy but it smells wonderful.  I like the clean earthy scents and this smells a lot like lemongrass which I love.  I used it before bed for the few uses included in the sample and it was hydrating without being greasy.  The full size is $20 which I might consider when I want to treat myself.  I have a million hand lotions to use up before I would need to purchase this though.

Eyeko Fat Eye Stick in Satin Taupe - I haven't used this too often this month because I am doing 2palettes1month which some other Instagram ladies.  We picked two palettes to focus on for the month of November and I've been trying to stick with that.  I love the taupe shade of this pencil though and it is awesome that it is a full size product.  I look forward to playing with it more in December and finding different ways to wear it.  The full size is $15.

Make Silk Cream lipstick and lip primer - The sample included the primer and two different shades of lipstick. Neither one of the shades is really a favorite for me (I prefer nudes) but they are great shades for fall.  I did use the primer and my finger to dab on the shade all the way on the right called Magnolia.  It gave me a nice shade of berry pink without being too bright.  However, I don't know if it was the primer or the lipstick or both, but this felt very drying.  I had to put chapstick over the top.  Also, once I opened these little bubble packets, I didn't have a good way to save the rest of the product so it wasn't the best way to send a sample.  The full size is $36.

Not Soap, Radio Joy Inducing Body Wash - This is another lemon scented product and I love the scent. I am a fan of lemon, obviously:)  I prefer a body wash of this type versus one that has more of a lotion or thicker consistency.  I find they leave a film on me and the shower that I don't enjoy (Just my personal opinion, others love them).  It is also a paraben-free product.  The full size is $16 and while I loved it, I'm not sure I can justify the price when I'm just not that picky about my shower gels.  I'm okay with a Target one for much cheaper.  This might be another Christmas or birthday list product along with the lotion that was first in my box.

Rusk Texture Spray (Dry Finishing Spray) - This is a nice lightweight finishing spray.  The bottle is a bit crazy though!  It sprays out with some power!:)  I do like that is a nice lightweight finish that holds but isn't sticky and doesn't make my hair hard.  The full size is $18.  I do use hairspray to smooth down flyaways almost daily so I might consider buying this one.  I'd be interested to see if Ulta has it when they have their hair product sales during the year.

Lifestyle Extra - Potato Chip ChocoPods - I ate this right away and it was so good!  It was a chocolate covered potato chip with sea salt.  Sometimes Birchbox includes these lifestyle extras in the boxes which do not count as one of the samples.  I've gotten a hair tie, food items, Chapstick, notecards.  It is just a fun little surprise extra.

That is it for my box this month.  Again, some great products although nothing that I feel I have to run out and buy right away.  I do like that you can favorite items on the Birchbox site so I can favorite items like the body wash and lotion and later when I'm wanting to make a purchase, I can easily the find the products I really like from each box.

As always, you can follow me on Twitter or Instagram for more beauty related posts:
Twitter - hmills79
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*All opinions are my own.  All products were purchased with my own money.  I was not compensated in any way for this post.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Mad Grab Tag

I was tagged on Instagram by bama_beauty_addict for the MadGrabTag.  The tag:  If I had to leave in a hurry and had only 1 minute to grab a makeup bag and makeup to fit in that bag, these are the things I would pick.  These products are the first ones I grabbed without really thinking about it.

I thought this was one of those tags that might need some explanation of the products.  Also, I didn't do an October favorites so I thought this would showcase some of my favorites.  By the way, I have been working on using up products so I really didn't have any new purchases or new favorites for October.

For face I chose:
Maybelline Fit Me concealer - I use the shades light and fair depending on the time of year.  This has been my favorite concealer recently.  I really like the Nars concealer, however, there isn't a grade shade match for my skin so I don't want to spend the money when it isn't perfect.  This seems to be a cheaper alternative to the Nars for me.

TheBalm Sexy Mama translucent powder - I purchased this product awhile back and only recently started using it after finishing up my other powder.  I really like this powder, it doesn't make me look cakey at all.  I have always used powder with a color in the past but I'm really liking translucent powder since using this product.

Physicians Formula bronze booster - I don't always use bronzer but when I do, this is my favorite.  I tend to use bronzer on the days when I feel like I need a bit more color.  I'll sweep it along my forehead, nose and cheeks.

Cargo blush in Bali - I have a few of these small Cargo blushes I have gotten in different sets and I really like them.  This or Tarte blushes would be ones I would lean towards.  I also love the Maybelline Master Hi-light blushes for a cheaper alternative.  The blush was my hardest choice to pick for this tag.

I didn't notice until after I started this tag that I didn't pick any sort of foundation or BB cream.  I currently switch between the Neutrogena Healthy Skin foundation or Garnier BB cream depending on the day so I'd probably grab one of those.

For my eyes:
Urban Decay eyeshadow primer potion - I am working on using up this eye primer since I have been using it forever and would like to try something different.  I wouldn't say this is my holy grail at this point but I do like it.

Urban Decay Naked Basics 1 - I love these shades and could use them every day.  I have many palettes but this one is small enough that it fits in a small makeup bag but still has a good variety of shades to play with.  I can also use the darker shades as liner under my eyes.

Stila kajal eye liner in amethyst - This is my absolute favorite eye liner ever.  I continue to use them since I bought a bunch before Stila clearanced them.  I don't think it is a product they sell any longer:(  It applies super smoothly and will smudge out if you would like but also doesn't wear off during the day.

Mally Volumizing mascara and Maybelline lash discovery - I use the Mally mascara on my upper lashes.  This is my absolute favorite mascara ever since it came in my Birchbox over the summer.  This one is almost gone and I will definitely repurchase.  The Lash Discovery I have also purchased multiple times and I use it for my bottom lash line.

For Lips:
NYX butter glosses - This particular shade is Angel Food Cake however I have multiple shades of these glosses, mostly nude shades such as Tiramisu and Eclair.  These go on smoothly and last for quite awhile without being sticky.

So, those are my choices of what I would grab.  When we take a short trip or I need to pack light, these are the products I will most often choose.  Have you posted this on your Instagram or posted about it?  Feel free to participate and show me what you would choose!


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*All opinions are my own.  I purchased all products with my own money.  I was not compensated in any way for this post.