Saturday, June 20, 2015

Beauty Goals 2015 Update!

Since my Birchbox just arrived the other day and it'll be awhile before I update my projects and post empties, I thought I would update on the goals I set for myself for 2015.  All the goals I posted about were beauty related since this is a beauty blog although I do set other goals for myself.  I recently felt the desire to go back and reread the goals.  I felt it was a good reminder to myself and thought I'd give a little update to you all as well!

Here were my goals from the post in January and I'll link to the original post here.

Update #1 - I am keeping track of purchases and have spent $178.43 to date.  In some areas, I have done really well limiting purchases.  I have definitely limited my purchases compared to what I would have spent at the same time last year.  However, my goal was to only buy what I needed and I have definitely spent beyond that.  I received beauty products as birthday gifts (granted I didn't pay for them but I still brought in more products), I went to the beauty show in March, and made a Tarte purchase online in May.

Most recently, I went to Sephora and used a gift card from Christmas.  I bought an eyelash curler because my other one was gross.  I limited myself to exactly what was on the gift card which included picking up a face mask and an eye makeup remover.  I did really well and resisted the urge to buy makeup.  So, this is definitely a struggle for me with limiting purchases but I will continue to work on this because I really don't want to end up with more products at the end of the year than I started with.  It defeats my purpose.

Update #2 - I have track of every empty product for 2015.  When possible I have also recorded the cost of the product or approximate cost of the sample.  As of May 2015, I had used up a total of 105 products (full size, deluxe size, foil packets, and expired items).  I had used $696.85 in products and had $141.01 that were trash from being expired.

My budget goal was $1 for each empty.  Using that logic, I currently owe about 68 empties before I should be buying anything else.  I am working hard to bring down my negative balance over the next few months.  I have a few projects going (You can check out previous updates and I will post new updates in a few weeks) and a few thoughts for going into fall and using up products.

Update #3 - Epic Fail!  I purchased eye shadow from Tarte and received makeup products as birthday gifts (because I asked for them even though I didn't need them:).  I did resist a lip gloss during my most recent Sephora trip though...woohoo!

Update #4 - I completed a project 10 pan back in February although I didn't use up all the products.  I started a Project 20 Pan at the beginning of May that will run until September 1st.  I'm seeing a lot of progress with the Project 20 Pan so that is helping me feel more successful than the products I picked in my 10 pan and didn't feel very successful with.  I am also doing Finish 4 by July 4th.  I don't think I'll finish most of those but I'm feeling happy with my progress.

Update #5 - I love my Youtube ladies that keep me going.  I also have a group of Instabesties and we are keeping each other accountable and checking in often.

So, that is where I am at with my goals for the year.  I am doing okay but not as well as I had hoped.  I am doing considerably better with controlling spending, however, than I have in past years.  I will continue to work on these goals with the hopes in being more successful when I update at the end of the year.


Friday, June 12, 2015

Influenster Blossom Vox Box

About a month ago, I received the Blossom Vox Box from Influenster.  If you aren't familiar with Influenster, they are a website where you can sign up to receive products for testing purposes.  It is connected with your social media if you choose and they say the larger your presence on social media, the better your chance of receiving products.  In addition, after receiving the products, you can complete activities or reviews which increases your chances of receiving future boxes.

Up until this point I had only received a product here or there such as a Sally Hansen polish or Reese's spread.  Both were great but I was very excited to receive a big box of different products this time!

Beanitos chips - I ate the plain salted flavor and hubby tried the Chipotle BBQ.  Both were very good although I was skeptical about how they were going to taste.  I would definitely purchase these.  I think the salted ones would be good with a taco dip or something similar.

Bear Naked granola - I received two different flavors and hubby ate both!  He really liked the flavors and said they were tasty.  I've tried other flavors of Bear Naked granola before and it is good stuff.

NYC Eye Shadow - I like these pencils as a base for other colors.  I find they crease on my eyelids when used alone but I do like to layer other shades on top and it gives the powder shadow more staying power.  I'd purchase this in a lighter shade that I could use as a base under any color shadow.

Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs - Not a big makeup on the legs fan.  I don't mind self tanning and prefer that to this product.

Australian Gold Sunscreen - I'm not picky on sunscreen brands although I have recently learned I should be watching them for some chemical ingredients.  However, this summer we will definitely be using this one up on vacation.  I'll be checking ingredients before I decide if I would purchase a full size.

Hair Food Root Cleansing Shampoo - I began to use this immediately as I'd recently used up my current shampoo (I still have many backups but wanted to try this out).  I really like this.  It cleans my hair of buildup and doesn't leave residue to make my scalp greasy.  I know they sell this line at Target and will be interested to try some of their other products out and possibly purchase another one of these at some point.

Nasoya Pasta Zero Noodles - I honestly haven't used these yet.  I put them up in the cabinet and forgot about them until I went to write this blog post.  They are supposed to be similar to Japanese noodles so I will try out a stir fry in the next week and use them.

There were also some coupons thrown into the box too for some of the items which I appreciate to encourage you to purchase the full size.  I think it is a nice bonus.

Interested in more about Influenster?  Let me know!


*I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Finish 4 by Fourth of July Update and 12 Empties of Christmas

I'm rolling two updates into one because the progress is a little pathetic:)

I'll start with Finish 4 by the Fourth of July.  I have made good progress on 3 of the products.  I'm still not sure that they will be finished but they will be very close!

Bare Minerals cream shadow - I haven't used this at all.  I thought I'd finish the color tattoo a long time ago and move onto this.  Hasn't happened.
Maybelline color tattoo - As you can see by the lines on the jar, I am using this up.  I apply it with a brush and then blend out a little with my finger.  I'm hoping this will be done by July 4th.  It will be pretty close.
Cover Girl Ready Set Gorgeous Foundation - I have been using this every day as my foundation.  It is okay but it isn't one that I feel like I need to run out and repurchase.  I find that even with a primer, my chin gets very oily by the end of the day and it breaks down a lot around my nose.  I'm trying to finish this up quickly since I think I've gotten a leak in the tube somewhere and I don't want the air getting to it.  I put this toothpaste squeezer on it and you could hear the air coming out somewhere.
Maybelline Fit Me concealer - This is my favorite drugstore concealer that I've tried.  As you can see from the side, it is definitely getting used up.  I tried to stand the tube up to mark it but the product doesn't really move.  This will be another close one by July 4th.

Onto 12 Empties of Christmas.  I have been using the products such as one of the perfumes and the bronzer every day.  I am also using the face wash and toner I listed in my products.  However, either there isn't enough progress for me to mark (the bronzer) or I can't see through the bottles to mark them.

I thought I would show you what my palette looks like at this point, though.  I included it as one of my empties.  I use five shades in my look every day with the darkest one as liner on my lower lash line.  The others I layer for my eye look each day.  I'm hoping to finish them up soon and move onto a different look.  I think some of the darker shades may still be around come December.

What products are you working on using up?  If you're doing any of these challenges, let me know so I can follow your progress!


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

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Project 20 Pan June Update

Almost summer for our family with 5 days left for me and 6 left for my daughter.  Hubby finished yesterday (jealous!).  As things are winding down, I will hopefully be better about all my updates and blogging over the summer.  If there is anything or any topic you would like to see, comment down below and I'll see what I can do over the next few months.

Last month I started a Project 20 Pan (May 1st) that will run until September 1st.  My goal is to finish at least 20 products although I technically have 27 in the project.  Unfortunately, I haven't been very good about using many of them, but I have a lot of products I'm working on for various reasons so I am still finishing products which is the main goal.

I'm going to show you progress on the products I have actually used:

Triple Lanolin Hand Lotion - You can see where I started and where I am now.
Vasanti Scrub (white bottle) - Again, you can see where I marked my progress.
Oahu body spray - I only used this once or twice so I have just a tiny bit of progress.  
Elf Under Eye Setting powder - I just realized this is upside down in the picture.  The progress lines should be not the bottom with only a little bit left to use up.
NYX blush in dusty rose - The large outline is my most recent progress, that large area to the right side.  This is getting very thin and starting to go more quickly now (fingers crossed).

Stila eyeliner in amethyst - I use this every single day and it is getting close to finally being finished.  
Urban Decay lipgloss in wallflower - This has a lot less than it looks like.  As soon as I laid it down for the picture, it spread out.  I probably have just a few uses.
Mac Viva Glam Lipstick - I put this on every day on the way to work in the car.  I am hoping to have it done by my last day of school next week!
Balance Me Eye cream - I am using this every night now as my eye cream, however, the tube is too thick to see through to show progress.

Products I have barely used or not used at all:
Garnier BB Cream - I've been trying to finish my foundation for Finish 4 by July 4th then I'll focus on this.
Jouer Liner in chocolat - I was focusing on the Stila liner first so I'll start this soon.
Body Mists in cashmere glow and twilight woods - I plan to use up the body mists in the summer when I don't want a perfume on for work and can do with a lighter scent.
Michael Todd Pumpkin Mask - I've used this once or twice but need to be better about my masks.
Glamglow mask - haven't touched this yet
Sugar Balm in Honey and Petal - I will be moving to these next after I finish the gloss and lipstick pictured above.
Stila Balm Lipstick in Gabrielle - Again, picked a few lip products to focus on first and then I'll move to the others.
Clarins eye concentrate - I will work on this after the balance me eye cream.
All Deluxe Lotions - I have almost finished 1 of the 8.

I am making some progress (better than none:).  I hope to have more progress and empty products at my 2 month update in July.  This project will last a 4 months total so I still have 3 months to go which is a good amount of time to finish up many of these products.


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

Monday, June 1, 2015

Beauty Blogger Book Club

A new month means it is time for my book review and to tell you what the book club will be reading this month.

In case you are new, the Beauty Blogger Book Club is exactly that.  A book club made up of beauty bloggers.  We have added a few new members over the past few months so we are up to 6 members.  I will link their blogs down below at the end of the post.

This month we read Where'd You Go Bernadette by Maria Semple.  This was Ashley's pick and, although I had heard a lot about the book, I hadn't ever read it.

The girl in the story is named Bee and Bernadette is her mother and her father works for Microsoft.  The story builds the relationships of the family with those around them from work to the students and parents at the private school Bee attends.  In the story, Bee is promised a trip to Antarctica if she aces her report card.  Bernadette has a fear of being around people and panics about the upcoming trip.  Then Bernadette disappears.  Bee sets out to find her mother through a variety of correspondence and documents she has collected.

I have to say that I had trouble getting into this book.  I'm not sure if it was the format of letters and documents but it took me awhile to get to a point where I wanted to continue reading.  Bernadette appears during the story be someone with a difficult personality.  She fights with the parents at her daughter's private school, she disagrees with her husband, and appears to make everyone's life more difficult because she is unhappy.

As the story develops, the author gives you insight into why Bernadette has developed into the person she is and I found it very interesting how her choices were explained and how her previous experiences had impacted her current choices.  Throughout the story, you also watch the dynamic change between Bee and Bernadette and Bee and her father as they make struggle to find a balance for their family.  I ended up really enjoying this book and couldn't put it down once I got a ways into it.

For the month of June, I chose the book The Year We Left Home by Jean Thompson.  I have a running list of books "to read" in Goodreads so I am excited that this gives me a reason to dig into that list for my choices.

In addition, go check out what the other bloggers thought of this month's book:
Michelyn:  Brains, Beauty & Basketball
Ashley: If You Give A Girl A Ring
Lisa:  Uncommon Wife Life
Lisa P: Blush and Back Roads
Stephanie: The Wonky Brow

Remember, you can always read the book this month with us!  And let me know your book recommendations!  Summer is coming and I will have extra time to read!