Saturday, December 31, 2016

My Beauty Notebook for 2017

Happy New Year's Eve!  Sorry for the longer than normal absence from the blog but we've had a crazy few weeks with sickness, a car accident (everyone is okay:) and the holidays.  I had intended to this post earlier, right after my goals, so that you could have to prepare if you chose to do some type of notebook.  But I thought I would still share mine as it is always a work in progress and may change throughout the year anyways.  This year, I took some ideas that I saw Curious Sparkles share on her Youtube channel when she shared her notebook.  I liked that she includes everything one notebook. I always had extra pieces of paper floating around from Project Use It Up or seasonal challenges.  Now I have a place to keep it all together.

This is the cover of the notebook I will use for this year.  I made sure to choose one that will have plenty of pages to get me through the whole year.  The page flags across the top are from the dollar section at Target.

The first section in the notebook are my goals and some of my trackers I will use during the year.  I shared that section of my notebook in my goals post a few weeks ago which you can find here.

Next there is a tab for each month.  I gave each month four pages.  The first page of each monthly section will have my Project Use It Up goals and products to focus on for the month.

The next page in the monthly section is where I have an overview page of my empties and purchases.  I tally all my empties and keep my running totals on this page.

Page #3 in the monthly section is where I list my purchases.  This helps me keep track of how much I am buying and what it costs.  It also gives me an idea of how old a product is.

The final page in the monthly section is where I list out all my empties.  I number them, write whether it is full, deluxe, or sample sized, and what the product is.  If it is a declutter, I make a note of that too (as opposed to it being an empty product).

After the 12 monthly tabs, I have a tab for projects.  This will be where I list and track any seasonal challenges or project pans I decide to do for the year.

At the very back of the notebook, I have listed all my nail polishes.  I do like to paint my nails but I am also pretty good about not going overboard with buying nail polish.  I decluttered a lot of shades during this year that were colors I didn't like, too old, or I didn't like the formula.  I know I fell short on those updates but  you can see from the list what I have left at the top of the page from that declutter.  The middle of the page are the polishes I got at the beginning of the year from gifts and a Zoya sale.  I recently subscribed to the Julep box for six months as part of my Christmas gift.  I got a bonus gift of some mini polishes which are listed at the bottom.  I really love the Julep formula and I am excited to have these polishes coming to me over the next few months.

I have recently finished my inventory so it is ready to go for 2017.  I keep the rest of my inventory in a separate notebook.  I list out every single product which I cross off as I finish it.  In the future, I may look for a notebook that has enough pages to combine them into one.  But I used what I had around the house for now to get some use out of all my notebooks.

I am working on my products for Use It Up and then I will get that posted, hopefully tomorrow.  I will also be sharing more about my Pan That Palette for the year in the next few days.  I have a lot to catch up on that I had planned to already have posted but I will try not to bombard you all this week:)


Thursday, December 15, 2016

2017 Beauty Goals

Since we are about halfway through December already (Yikes!), I thought I'd share some goals for 2017.  I will say that some of these aren't set in stone, especially where it comes to blogging.  However, I have some ideas so I thought I would share them.  Also, I love lists and goals so these are my favorite posts:)

My goals comprise the first section of my beauty notebook.  I will post what I am including in my beauty notebook in the next few days so you can see all of it.

1.  Finish as many shadows as possible.  I will continue working on the matte shades in my Tarte Mattenificent palette since I still have a ways to go on that from this year.  Instead of adding another palette for Pan That Palette, I am just going to try to finish as many as possible.  I will try to focus a lot of my energy on my Naked palette since that is the oldest palette I own.

2.  Budget - Spend money on items I really want to try.  In an effort to cut back on spending this year, I tried to limit myself to $25 a month.  Some months it worked really well, others it did not.  Instead of placing a limit, I will try to keep my spending to items I really have been wanting to try.  For instance, I would like to try out some drugstore mascara, I want to try the Cover Girl BB cream, and there are others as well.
In addition, I am going to work on my skincare stash.  I need to get over the feeling that I need to buy many backups.  I would like to get to the point where I have one of each product (excluding samples that come in) and I don't think about replacing it until it is almost empty.  I don't switch around my skincare like I do my makeup so I really don't need a lot of extra products around.

3.  Continue Project Use It Up - This has really helped me focus on products and also incorporate other items like perfume samples and foil packets to work through them.

4.  Continue small seasonal projects - This is usually where I incorporate more makeup items to try to finish them up.  It is also fun to join in the IG and Youtube community with these projects.

5.  Focus on 2 blushes each month.  If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I did a huge lip product declutter this fall and got rid of shades that didn't work for me, were old, etc.  I am going to focus on 2 blushes each month for this same purpose.  I may end up keeping all of them, I may not, but I have neglected a lot of them and want to try them out.

Blog Goals:  These are some areas I would like to focus on this year for the blog posts.
6.  Be more consistent with my loves post.  Some months I did these and others I did not, so I'd like to make sure I am sharing what I am loving with you every month.

7.  Review new products more often - dedicate an entire post if necessary instead of just haul reviews

8.  Haul posts - I am trying to decide whether I purchase each haul separately or do one big post at the end of the month like I have been.  Weigh in with your thoughts in the comments if you have a preference.

9.  Blog post of blushes and eyeshadows I will be focusing on for each month - also a work in progress, we will see if this works out.

The next page is more specific product goals.  I buy a lot of skincare to try, maybe more than makeup.  And so I have so many face washes, moisturizers, etc. to work through.  One goals is to finish my face washes before buying more.  This may take all year, I don't know for sure.  At the beginning of 2017, I will write in the number I am starting with.

I would like to finish 15 lip products.  I have finished at least 10 this year so I am going to aim higher for next year.  This includes chapstick, lip gloss, lipstick, any of it.

Finish all perfume samples from 2016.  I say 2016 because I want to start with those that are oldest.  If I get any in 2017, I will add those to the end if I finish all the others.  That being said, if I hate a fragrance after I try it, I will toss it.  I'm not going to hate how I smell all day just to finish a perfume sample.  Again, I will write in how many I have when 2017 starts.

Pan as many shadows as possible.

In an effort to keep my lip product stash from going crazy again, I am going to limit how many I can bring in.  For every five I finish, I can purchase one from my list.  That way, by the end of 2017 I might have a more manageable number.

That is it for the goals section of my notebook and what I am focusing on in 2017.  I would love for you to share some of yours or give some feedback for me!


Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Was It Worth It? - Thoughts on August's Purchases

Time for some reviews for you!  I will be letting you know my thoughts on the items I purchased in August of this year.

Birchbox - My first purchases were free with Birchbox points.  I have yet to use the DermaE or Caudalie products because I am finishing up others first that are already open.  I have used the Ruffian varnish top coat since it replaced one that was old and goopy.  The SeaRX and Aloe were both samples with my order.  They have already been in an empties post but they weren't anything I'd purchase.

Sephora - I was interested in trying one of the Bare Minerals gen nude liquid lipsticks and it was offered as a 100 point perk.  I stocked up on some cotton rounds and included the lipstick in my order as well.  I really like the liquid lipstick formula and don't find it drying at all. I did keep it in my recent declutter.

Walgreens - I was determined to track down this lip balm because it sounded so fun when I saw an ad in a magazine.  I do really like it but definitely don't give it as much love as I should.

Coastal Scents - Coastal Scents was offering their hot pots (single shadows) for 99 cents!  I couldn't pass up trying a few.  I love the shades I chose and the formulas have been amazing to work with.  I also received the little quad as a free sample.  I would definitely buy more of these singles.  

Ulta - This purchase was a result of a day of extra points Ulta offered on certain items.  The Tea Tree oil was 10X points and this is the bottle I am currently working on.  The Burts Bees is my husband's favorite chapstick and was 5X points.  The rest of the items were samples. I gave away the shampoo and conditioner samples since they aren't right for my hair type.  I have used one of the chia seed body lotions and it had a crazy strong smell.  I'll use the other one but I wouldn't purchase it.  I haven't tried the Ulta lotion yet.

Sephora - I purchased the Nars concealer as a backup to my Urban Decay.  I am still working on finishing up the Urban Decay one but have started to scrape the sides so it will be done soon.  Looking back, I didn't really need the Nars concealer yet and could have waited awhile to purchase it.  I also bought a travel size of the LaVanilla deodorant because I heard good things and I know I should be using a more natural deodorant.  I have tried the deodorant and it is not for me.  I stunk by 4:00 that day and it was awful.  I'm going to give it to my daughter to use because it will work for her and I'll keep hunting for one that works for me.

I am happy to say that, unlike other months, I have actually used some of these products and the samples included in the orders.  I am trying to be better about not feeling like I "need" so many backups of products.  When I open my last one, or even when my last one is half full, is when I really need to be buying a replacement, not when I still have unopened products waiting.

I hope you are enjoying these reviews of what I have purchased in the past.  I think in 2017, I am going to post each purchase separately to keep my posts shorter (still thinking on that one).  That way, my reviews will be shorter as well.


Monday, December 5, 2016

New to Me in November

You all will be happy to hear that I have a more exciting haul for you this month because I purchased something other than my Sephora Play box ;)  November was the VIB sale and Black Friday so I did pick up a few things.

Purchase #1 - Birchbox
At the beginning of the month, Birchbox gave me 50 points for free.  I had some points in my account to use up (since I am canceling when my year is up and don't plan to purchase from them anymore) and the addition of the 50 points made it more enticing to use them up at that time.  I purchased The Body Shop tea tree oil which I use every day on areas of my skin prone to blemishes.  I also purchased the Marcelle micellar water which I've used before and love.  The Acure Lip Lush was a freebie with purchase.

Purchase #2 - Ulta
This purchase was out of necessity.  My daughter needed a new brush and I needed the other items.  Luckily, I had 2X points so that was a nice little bonus.  I have never tried Hand Food and my current hand cream is at the end so I'm excited to use it soon!

Purchase #3 and #4 - Sephora
I purchased three items during the VIB sale.  The first item was a new shaving brush for my husband because his is falling apart.  He likes the Art of Shaving brushes and so the 20% off was a good time to buy it and save $12 (this item is not pictured).  I also bought the small size of Hourglass powder in dim light.  I've been wanting to try one of their powders and I only have one powder in my stash at this point so I figured I'd grab another one so I have some options.  My third purchase was a Marc Jacobs lipgloss in Taboo.  This was not a need but I did get rid of a lot of glosses and had been wanting to try this brand.  The rest of the items pictured are samples from my orders (with a lot of substitutions by Sephora instead of what I actually chose when I ordered).

Purchase #5 - Sephora
This was my Black Friday purchase.  I am on my last beauty blender so I wanted something to keep around as a backup.  This was a set that they offered that day.  There was a sample bag code so I stocked up on my favorite cotton rounds to reach the amount for the bag.

This is the sample bag and samples that came with my Black Friday order.

Sephora Play box - I love the gloss and the perfume smelled really good.  I've already finished it.  I'm excited to use the caviar stick since everyone raves about them.
Stella McCartney Pop
Caudalie sorbet moisturizer
Glamglow mask
Sephora gloss
Laura Mercier caviar stick
Cover FX primer

What did you purchase this month?  Anything you are loving?


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

Friday, December 2, 2016

November Beauty Empties

I can not believe we are into December and another year is almost over!  Not to mention, I have a lot to do before the holidays roll around.  In November, I got an itch to declutter.  And by declutter, I mean everything in my life:)  It is still going and I am struggling with feeling like I really don't want things and wondering if I will miss them down the road.  I'd also like to be replacing items with ones I know I will love more but I also know this takes time and money and needs to be a process.  This isn't the case in all areas, but definitely some.

What this leads me to is decluttering makeup items.  I decluttered 40 items in November from my beauty products.  Some were hair products and skincare that I had received in various boxes and said I would use, but in all honesty, were not right for my hair type or skin type.  I also did a huge lip product declutter and weeded out all the old products and ones that I had bought, tried, and weren't really right for me but I had held on to them anyways.

This is just a portion of what I got rid of.  Some are lipsticks while some are mascaras that I had tried and really didn't like.  I also have perfume samples that I tried and just didn't like the scent and didn't want to use them every day.

Now on to the actual empties...

These are all deluxe face wash empties that I used up.  I don't think I'd purchase a full size of any of them except maybe the Boscia Detoxifying Black Cleanser.  The others were the Ole Henriksen african red tea foaming cleanser which I liked but not enough to pay the higher price for it, and the Ulta Pore Minimizing and Clarisonic cleansers.

More skincare:
Marcelle gentle makeup remover - I love this eye makeup remover.  I have gone through a few of these.  I have been using my cleansing waters as eye makeup removers lately but I would repurchase this one.
Murad advanced active radiance serum - I didn't notice that this did anything for my skin.  I have other vitamin C serums and brightening serums I prefer.
Murad Intensive-C radiance peel - Again, I didn't notice any difference when I used this product so I wouldn't purchase it.
Malin and Goetz clarifying clay mask - This was too gritty and irritated my skin when I had to rinse it off.

Bodycare and Haircare:
Ulta beauty smoothie in creamy cocolada - I use these beauty smoothies to shave and you can usually find a really good deal on them.  I have another scent going in my shower now.
Shea Moisture olive and green tea body wash - I really liked this body wash.  It lathered well and I enjoyed the subtle scent.  I would repurchase or try other scents from this brand.
Living Proof perfect hair day dry shampoo - I really liked this dry shampoo and I would definitely purchase a full size, although I'd like to try Batiste first since I've never tried it.
Aveeno lotion - I kept this small size in my purse.  It was okay.  I liked that it didn't get too greasy for applying during the day.
Gioje protein hair mask - I was not a huge fan of this.  It didn't hurt my hair but I also didn't notice that it did a whole lot for it.  And it has a very strong smell which lasted throughout the day which I wasn't a fan of.

Tarte lights camera lashes mascara - This is one of my very favorite mascaras.  It gives me great volume and I will repurchase.
NYX pencil in nude - I bought this a very long time ago to use in my waterline.  I have since learned that my sensitive eyes can not handle any liner on my waterline.  So I used it up by using it as base for eyeshadow.  I have no reason to repurchase but it was a good nude liner if you need one.
Smashbox Photo finish lid primer - I didn't like this primer very much.  It seemed very dry and didn't blend out well.
Tarte smooth operator amazonian clay finishing powder - I really like this powder, although I'd prefer a pressed version in the future.  I had a little sample I poured into the bigger container and used them both up.  I'd repurchase in the future.

Sephora cotton rounds - My favorites...I just stocked up during the sale in November.
Ulta cotton pads - I usually just pick these up if it gets me to a shipping amount or for a coupon.  I feel like they shed and get cotton in my eyes more than others.
Algenist lip renewal balm - I bought this because it came in a kit with their eye cream I wanted to try.  I wouldn't purchase it plus it had a very gritty texture that was weird.
Philosophy Pure Grace perfume - This was the oldest perfume in my collection so I'm glad to have used it up before it went bad.  I love this smell and would repurchase but there are other scents I want to try.

For November, I used up 26 products (8 full size, 12 deluxe, 6 samples).  I also decluttered 40 for a total of 66.  My year to date total is 288 used products.

I purchased 23 products at a cost of $63.  I'll show those to you in my next post, my November Haul. I am going into December with 356 products in my collection (roughly...won't be totally accurate until I do my inventory this month), down from 399 at the beginning of November.


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

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Project Use It Up - November Update and December Goals

Hi friends!  I suppose now that Thanksgiving is over, we start the countdown to Christmas.  We have a few weeks of school between now and then but I have already started my list of things to accomplish while I have two weeks off.  I didn't cross many items off my list during Thanksgiving break as many other things seemed to take over (like Gilmore Girls on Netflix:).  I did some shopping for gifts already and did buy myself one beauty item on Black Friday which I will include in my November Haul which I will post in the next week or so.

This is going to be my update on Project Use It Up for November.  

I have been doing pretty well with masking once a week.  I have found that I am more likely to do it during the week (I have been aiming for Tuesdays) when I am home and doing things around the house instead of weekends when we are out and about.  So, I will cross off that fourth box today since this is going up on Tuesday.
I used up all five foil packets but must have forgotten to cross off the boxes.  I reviewed those samples on my Instagram (@lovetobebusyblog).
I was much better about using my peel pads this month but I still haven't been painting my nails.

I finished the Pure Grace perfume and Malin and Goetz mask which you will see in my empties.  I am considering the Ponds cream finished since I have 1-2 uses left.

These are my December goals.  I am trying out listing them out in my notebook where I keep track of all my other beauty info.  My overall goals are the same for the month.

I am keeping a few products that I want to continue to work on.  I took out the Ponds cream since it will be finished very soon and I will use the Liz Earle in its place.  I am not adding any products in because during December I will be working on all my deluxe sized products so I want to focus on those.  I will keep a tally of how many I finish as well as a list with my empties.

These are all the products I am carrying over from November.  I have barely used the perfume since I was concentrating on finishing the Philosophy one.  I will focus on this one now.  I have 8 peel pads left.  I have been using 2 at a time because they are so dry now that I need one for each side of my face.  So, I hope to have those gone this month also.  

My big focus will be moving out deluxed size samples this month.  I will keep you updated on Instagram as I have empties.  

I am working on big goals and how I want to organize my beauty info for next year.  If you are interested in seeing how I plan to organize my beauty notebook, let me know.  I will blog about it after I get it all set up if people are interested (keeping some things I do now and modifying a bit after seeing Curious Sparkles post about hers on Youtube).


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

Sunday, November 20, 2016

November Birchbox and October Reviews

My November Birchbox arrived about a week ago but I wanted to make sure I share with you before the week gets crazy with Thanksgiving plans.  In case you are not familiar with Birchbox, you receive 4-5 samples for $10 each month.  You can earn points through purchases on their website that you can then redeem for products on the website.  They no longer give out points for reviews of products the boxes.

November's theme was The Finishing Touch.  I usually cheat when they send out the email to peek at our box before it arrives so I had an idea of what was coming:)

I received:
Bumble and bumble Hairdresser's Invisible Oil - $40 full size
Chella eyebrow pencil in Tantalizing Taupe - $18 full size
Coola Mineral SPF 30 Daydream Makeup Primer - $42 full size
Marcelle New-Age LumiPower 3-in-1 Moisturizer - $26 full size
Oribe Superfine Hairspray - $22-$33 full size

I'm excited about all the products this month except the Coola primer.  I find that products with SPF do not agree with my skin on a daily basis (yes, I know this is horrible and I am constantly on the hunt for an SPF I can wear every day).

I don't use a pencil to fill in my brows because I've never wanted to buy one and be totally unsuccessful and have wasted money (haha).  But I will try this one out, maybe with the clear gel from Anastasia we got in a Sephora box and see how it goes.  I like hair oil, hairspray and I have loved almost every Marcelle product I've ever tried.

Now on to reviews of October's box...

I have to be honest that I didn't even open most of these products.  I am trying to work through a product before opening a new one since I have had to throw a lot of things away lately because they went bad.  I will definitely use the mask, healing balm, and cleansing milk as soon as I need to open a new one of any of these categories.

I have passed along the Parlor by Jeff Chastain conditioner because I don't need volume and texture in my hair.  I have also given away the LOC lip crayon because I don't wear red.

I tried the Clarins energy booster and it felt nice.  I mixed it in with the Clarins moisturizer I had in the box also.  I didn't notice a difference with the energy booster, maybe because I have been using a brightening product every day for awhile now.  I do like how the moisturizer feels and would consider purchasing it for night time (someday years down the road when all my others are gone lol).

I know I haven't tried every out yet, but I am excited to use them.  I am just trying to be more conscientious of what I have open at one time.


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

Friday, November 18, 2016

Was It Worth It? - Thoughts on July Purchases

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is next week!  Things have been crazy and I know they are going to get busier with my daughter starting competition season for gymnastics and the holidays approaching.  Unfortunately, fall as decided to arrive today as it went from 65 to 45 in just a few hours:(

It has been a few months and it is time to review the purchases I made in July.  July was the month I attempted to not buy all.  I almost was successful since I only made a few clearance sale clothing purchases.  I did not buy any extra beauty products beyond the subscription boxes I got that month.  Therefore, the only item in my haul that month was my Sephora Play Box.

The first item I received was the Ouai wave spray.  I have very straight and thick hair.  It does not wave no matter how much product I put in it.  So I have passed this item on to someone who can use it.

Next I had Dew the Hoola liquid bronzer from Benefit.  I can not use this as a bronzer.  It is not a good color match for my pale skin.  However, I have started using it to darken up my It Cosmetics CC cream in fair so it is a better match.  I tried this after seeing a few people on Youtube using it for this purpose.  This is not a product that I would purchase a full size of.

The First Aid Beauty Cleanser is a good basic cleanser.  It removes makeup and cleans my face.  I'm not sure it is better than other cleansers I have tried for a less expensive price tag.  However, it has been nice to have around for my makeup bag when I travel.

I also received the Smashbox photo finish face primer.  I am not a huge fan of silicone primers and have not opened this one yet since I have another one I am trying to finish.  However, I will use this up at some point but I wouldn't purchase it myself.

Finally, my fragrance sample was the Nest Citrine fragrance. I love this fragrance.  It doesn't last a long time but it is a nice fresh scent.  I have had samples before from Sephora orders so I knew I liked it.  I haven't used this one up yet but I will soon.

So, that is it for my products that I hauled in July.  It wasn't one of my favorite Sephora boxes but it is always nice to try samples before you buy a product.


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

Monday, November 14, 2016

New to Me in October

Since I have been trying to declutter and be better about my spending, I didn't have any big purchases in October.  I did buy the Lorac Mega Pro 3, but that might have even been at the end of September.

I am absolutely loving that palette, even though I don't have a picture for this post.  I love the shades and they are very pigmented and blend so well.  I have a little Lorac trio from a kit awhile back, but this is my first experience with a Lorac palette and I really love it.

Since I am trying to declutter (and will do even more as I create my newest inventory at the end of the month), I am trying not to buy too many items until I decide what to get rid of and what I would really like to try out in its place.

The only purchase in October was my Sephora Play box.  Since I don't share that any other place on my blog, I thought I would show you what I received in my box.  Sephora has been sending out different variations over the past few months.

October's theme was The Cool Cut and I received...

Smashbox Always On Matte Liquid Lipstick in Driver's Seat - I am giving this away because when I swatch it, it is not a good color for me.  It is very orange/brown on me (I need to stick to pinkier shades with my skin tone).

Blinc Mascara amplified - I have been using this and I do like it.  It is very strange to take off since it looks like your eyelashes are coming out:)  It doesn't give me as much volume as I would like but it does wear well throughout the day with no smudging or flaking for me.

Items I haven't tried ye:
Skin Inc Pure Revival Peel
Belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb - I think I have used this before and if it is the exact same product, I do like it.
Christophe Robin Regenerating Mask with Rare Prickly Pear Seed Oil

This box wasn't as exciting for me as a few of the past boxes but I will try everything out and report back over the next few months.  I will continue to try this out for a few months but I don't know that I will continue with the subscription after that period.

I have some thoughts on my own hauls, purchases, subscriptions, samples that I will be trying to put together to share for 2017.


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

Thursday, November 3, 2016

October Beauty Empties

Time again for some empties...I love empties:)  You will also notice over future posts about my empties that I am including products that I am decluttering.  I don't often think too much about what I am taking in and figure I will use it someday.  However, I have been working on going through my lip products and getting rid of ones that I don't like the color, formula, etc.  I am feeling very good about my choices and I am going to be carrying that over to other areas.  As I find items that I just won't use, I will be decluttering them rather than putting them to the side.  I will also be looking at products as I do my inventory in the next month or so for 2017 so that I'm not holding on to items I won't ever use.  In cases where possible, I am passing unopened items along to others to try out.

Well, that ended up quite the explanation...on to October empties.

Skincare Empties:
SeaRX anti wrinkle creme - This was a sample from Birchbox.  I didn't notice any difference and the sample was only about half full to start with.

Sephora cotton rounds - My favorite...I'll be purchasing more with the VIB sale this month.

Mario Badescu aloe lotion - I tried out this toner because it was recommended by the Mario Badescu website when I did my skin analysis.  I really liked it and I would use it again.  I also like the Glycolic toner and have that one (and a few other brands) to use before I'd purchase this one again.

The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil - I use this every day on the areas of my face most prone to breakouts.  I will always repurchase.

DermaE evenly radiant brightening serum - I bought this as an alternative to the Ole Henriksen one that I like.  I don't notice my skin looking that much brighter, however, I have been using a brightening serum for quite awhile now so I doubt I would see much difference unless I stop using one for awhile.  I would purchase this one again.

More Skincare Empties: - I'm trying to work through some deluxe sized cleansers
pur-lisse gentle soy milk cleanser - This was okay.  It cleaned my skin and didn't irritate it but wasn't anything special.

Nude omega cleansing jelly - I felt like this slipped right off my face before I had a chance to work it in.  It didn't get my face clean.

Key West Aloe cleanser - This was another random Birchbox sample.  It was okay.  It cleaned well.  Nothing special.

Bioderma sebium H2O - This sample was nice.  I was able to use it on my eyes as well without it stinging.  This one says purifying cleansing on it so I assume that is the difference between the green and the pink.  I am using a bottle of the pink one now.  I have a lot of cleansing waters to use up before I would need to purchase one.

Makeup Empties:
Marcelle BB cream golden glow - This was extremely dark.  It worked for my skin tone for about a day after being in the sun.  I mixed it in with a foundation that is too light for me just to use it up.  I also felt like the glow part of it made me super oily as the day went on.  I wouldn't purchase.

Bare Minerals Pop of Passion in pink passion - This was a lip balm type lipstick.  It was okay.  I have another sample I will be passing on to someone instead of using.  It was a pretty pink shade for summer.

Too Faced Shadow Insurance - This worked well for my eyelids.  I wasn't greasy and my eyeshadow lasted.  I have other primers to use before I would need to purchase one.

Juliette Has a Gun in Not a Perfume - I really love this scent but it doesn't last long enough to spend the money on it since it is expensive.

Bare Minerals Bareskin perfecting veil in Light to Medium - This powder was okay.  I didn't think it was anything special.

Lip Product Declutter - This were all items I tried (to refresh my memory why I bought them) and didn't want to keep for a variety of reasons.  You can check out my Instagram (@lovetobebusyblog) for more reviews of these products.

I finished 18 items this month and decluttered 7 for a total of 25 products.
Life has gotten busy lately and I have not had time to be keeping track of the dollar amount of what I have used.  I need to go a bit lower maintenance with some things and that had to go:)

Empties, decluttering, and budgeting has me thinking about 2017 so stay tuned for those plans in the coming months.


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

Monday, October 31, 2016

Project Use It Up - October Update/November Goals

I can't believe it is already November!  I'm already starting to think about and prepare for another holiday season!

Looking back through the blog, I didn't post October goals here.  We had lost internet for about a week and a half and so I just posted a brief overview on Instagram.

So here is what I posted for October...

I was able to finish the Marcelle golden glow BB cream and also the Murad Intensive-C Peel (which I forgot to cross off).  You will see those products along with reviews in my empties.  I used the peel 4 times (once a week) so I was able to check all those boxes.  I also finished a perfume sample, 2 deluxe samples, and 5 foil packets.  I haven' been painting my nails very often because they've been dry and peeling so I am trying to give them a break from polish for a bit.

These are my November goals.  I am keeping the categories the same and adding back in the peel pads that I had previously each month.  I didn't want to use them along with the Murad peel but I do need to try to finish them up since they are drying up.

These are the products that I had in previous months that I am carrying over.  I used quite a bit of the Murad toner and Pure Grace perfume during October.  I think I might be able to finish the perfume in November.  I thought I would have the Ponds cream finished but I still have a bit left.
I took out the Garnier BB cream because I have put it into my Crossing 6 off our Christmas list project pan and will be tracking the progress there.
I didn't put the Marc Jacobs Dot fragrance in the picture.  I am keeping it in this project and will continue to use it but I am going to focus on the Pure Grace this month to see if I can finish it.

These are the two products I am adding in for November.  I will be using this mask once a week and hopefully it only has about two uses left.  I don't use the Lancome every day but if I use it on weekends and maybe some nights before bed, then I can finish it this month as well.

Hope you all had a fun Halloween!

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

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Bare Minerals Mystery Box Reviews

Every so often, Bare Minerals offers a mystery box.  I have paid $30 for this box and $40 for this box and they usually offer it with free shipping.  Not having tried many items from this brand, I was excited to try out their products.  The most recent mystery box I bought was back in June so I thought I would give some updates on my thoughts on the products.

This was all the items that came in the box.

I love the silver makeup bag.  It is so fun and a great size for my purse.  I was super excited to use these smaller brushes for travel but I don't find them to be great quality.  They don't blend product well and feel scratchy.  The eye brush is okay, I just don't have much use for it at the moment.

Marvelous Moxie gloss in rule breaker - I haven't used this since I received it.  I am working on decluttering my lip products so I will be wearing it in the next couple of weeks and I will post my thoughts on whether I'm keeping it or not on my Instagram.

Buxom full on lip color in Brooklyn - Again, I haven't worn this since I received it.  I'll update on my Instagram if I'm keeping it.

Eyecolor in Nude Beach and True Gold - I love these shades!  I use them occasionally when I want a one eyeshadow look.  I need a better sticky base for them like Mac Fix plus or something so I can use them easier.

Big and Bright eyeliner in chocolate - I really like this eyeliner.  It isn't as dark brown as I would like but I run a bit of shadow over it and it helps it stand out a bit more.

Pop of Passion in pink passion - I recently used one of these up in my Finish 50 by Fall that I got in my first mystery box.  It was okay, not a favorite, so I'm going to pass this one on to someone else instead of opening it.

Primetime oil control foundation primer - I haven't used this yes since I'm trying to finish an older primer.  However, I'm exciting about the oil control claims.

Pop of Passion cream cheek color in petal passion - I don't find myself reaching for this product much.  It isn't a color I gravitate towards and it is a little tacky.  I will likely declutter it with my next declutter.

All Over Face Color in enchanted beauty - I really love this shade but forget to reach for it often.  I need to pull it back out for a little glow.

Overall, I have found some great products in these mystery boxes.  I am sometimes frustrated when I find I really like one of the products or colors and it is discontinued (which can happen often with these boxes).  They are definitely worth the money in my opinion.  You get a ton of products, often full size for the cost of one or two full size items.

I may pick one of these up again in the future.  It will depend on timing and where I am in my downsizing journey.  I am really trying to be good about my spending in all areas of my life and cutting back on unnecessary spending.  While I love the surprise of getting these boxes, I often don't need or won't use many of the products.  If you have never tried a mystery box before, I definitely think they are a fun way to go.


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

Sunday, October 23, 2016

October Birchbox and September Reviews

I haven't been super excited about the sample choices lately for Birchbox so I have chosen to be surprised.  Because of my lack of excitement about the sample choices, I haven't had high hopes for my box either.  However, I was pretty happy with my October box because it contained a lot of skincare which I enjoy trying out.

October's theme was Soothing Standouts.
I received:
Clarins Multi-active Day all skin types - $53 full size
Hustle Butter Luxe - $25 full size
Juice Beauty cleansing milk - $22 full size
LOC vibrant matte lipstick in wildest creams - $8 full size
Tat Harper Resurfacing mask - $58 full size
Parlor by Jeff Chasten volumizing and texturizing conditioner - $22 full size
Clarins booster energy - bonus item not listed on the card

I'm excited to try the Clarins products and I like Juice Beauty as well.  I won't use the red lipstick and am not even opening it so I can pass it on to someone else.  I don't understand why they don't include more neutral lip shades in their boxes.  I would get much more use out of them, but maybe I'm in the minority.

Now on to September's reviews...
I truthfully didn't use much from this box yet.  I didn't want to open the mascara since I am working on 2 others right now.  I'll try this one out next though.

I tried the Bioderma and I really liked it.  I got more uses out of this sample than I thought I would.  I'm currently using the Bioderma in the pink bottle and I like that one too.

I liked the Milk highlighter stick.  I used a stipple brush to apply to my cheekbones and it looked nice without being too shimmery and crazy.

I didn't open the DermaE microdermabrasion because I have used it before and I know I like it.  I will definitely use it, I just didn't want it to go bad by opening it yet.

I didn't use the cleansing conditioner because the idea just doesn't excite me.  I'm afraid my hair will feel dirty but I'll give it a try one day soon.

September's Birchbox wasn't super exciting for me when it arrived and I think that contributed to my lack of excitement over trying out the products.  I am working hard towards using up lots of my samples and deluxe sizes as I get them so hopefully I will get to these soon.


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