Monday, December 29, 2008

Deals of the Day

The after Christmas sales are piling up and it's the time for several stores to have their semi-annual sales.
Victoria's Secret, Express and Bath and Body Works are all having their semi-annual sale. The prices are amazing. Express is also having an additional 20% off their clearance items. I got two fab items and was going to go back the next day to get more. Don't do that! Everything I wanted was completely picked out. With these huge, clearance sales it's better to buy and then return or exchange (read the stores policy first) items, instead of risking having them picked out.

-Wet Seal clearance on-line and in store starting at $1

-Banana Republic Outlet-Extra 40% off clearance...WooHoO

Saturday, December 27, 2008

New Year's Resolutions

You do it every day (as do I!). Make a fabulous list of New Years resolutions and by my birthday (January 15th) they're all out the window. 2009 however can be different. All it takes is a little planning in advance and of course some dedication.

A great way to make resolutions stick is to break them down into smaller, more attainable goals. This year I plan on breaking my goals down into 12 smaller goals, one a month.

For example, the ever popular goal of losing weight/excercising more/eating better/being healthier. This year my goal is to be healthier, if this involves losing weight, whatever. I just want to be able to excercise with out getting winded and feel healthier. I get sick all the time, I'm sure my diet and lack of excercise has to be a contributing factor to that. Here is my 2009 monthly breakdown.

January- Exercise three times a week-minimum. If it's going to the gym, doing an exercise dvd or going for a walk/jog.

February- Incorporate more fruits and vegetables into my daily routine. I want to start having a salad with my lunch or dinner. It's a great way to get some veggies, and since lettuce is a water based veggie it helps you feel full quicker. I also want to replace my afternoon snack with a fruit or veggie snack. Around 2-3 at work I always begin to crash, and I have a feeling some natural energy will do me better than another can of diet coke.

March- If I'm not doing it all ready, I want to start exercising 5 times a week. I want this to include cardio, weight training and flexibility training, such as pilates or yoga.

April- Master some healthy recipes and begin planning my meals in advance. I find that when I get home from work and feel rushed, I reach for crappy food. If I begin planning and prepping my meals in advance I will never have to stop for fast food or reach for crappy food again.

May- Incorporate exercise into my everyday mundane tasks. Exercise doesn't only happen in the gym or on a jog, you can incorporate exercise into every part of your day. Now, instead of sitting in my chair while I'm on the phone I'm going to do lunges or plies. Instead of emailing my co-worker, I'm going to get off my lazy butt and walk to the person. When I'm watching Gossip Girl, I can do push ups, sit ups or jumping jacks during the commercial. THere is always time to incorporate a little fitness into your day.

And so on. When I look at this huge goal in smaller portions, I really feel that it's attainable. When I meet a monthly goal I plan on rewarding myself with a new cookbook, a mani/pedi, or a new outfit to show off my hot new bod :)

Another way to ensure that your resolutions can be met is to enlist the support of a friend, partner, co-worker or family member who has a similar goal. If you have support and also have the trust of someone else, you will be less likely to bail.

Get the necessary supplies to meet your goal, but don't go overboard. Another one of my goals is to organize my room and therefor, my life! I've started on my closet and only bought what was necessary. Some people can go out and spend a ton on work out gear they won't use, organizing supplies that just create more clutter or any other fad that they chose to buy in to. Take inventory of what you need to meet your goal and ONLY buy that.

Most importantly: write them down and place them somewhere you'll them everyday. Post it in your fridge or by your computer. It's hard to ignore when it stares you down every morning.

What is everyone's New Years Resolutions??

Mine are:
-Be healthy (that's my monthly breakdown up there)
-Stop impulse shopping
-Be a better friend
-Write in my journal
-Organize and declutter my room and my closet
-Take more pictures
-Keep track of my expenses and put away more money.

Now that I wrote them on here, I have everyone else to answer to also haha.
Happy 2009!

Monday, December 22, 2008

What to wear? What to wear?

So the bf and I are going to the Melting Pot for New Years Eve. It's in a mini city by us that has their own ball dropping (no way in HELL I'm going to Times Square) and tons of fancy food. I'm trying to put together a cheap outfit, because I buy s0o many dresses and literally only wear them once. Here are a couple of Forever 21 looks I put together on Polyvore. I need help! Let me know which one you gals like.

Purple and Black by Melziebabee

New Years Eve-Purpley by Melziebabee

Forever 21 by Melziebabee

Friday, December 19, 2008

From the heart-Moms, Aunts, Grandmas

The women in our lives are super important and after all they have done for us, now is a great time to try to express to them how much we appreciate them. Gifts from the heart are the perfect way to accomplish this.

Note cards-
Michaels and A.C. Moore sell blank cards by the dozens for $5 each (and hello 50% off coup!) This is where creativity comes in. I just received note cards with beautiful photographs glued to the front. The pics were all taken in Cape Cod, which is where my family lives. If you don't love nature like photos, why not copy some photos of you and the person you're giving the cards to through the years. Your first pic of the two of you were when you were a baby, up to the most recent. If photos aren't your think, there's tons of stickers, papers, punches, any kind of scrapbooking supplies to make a pretty card.

Scrapbooks are a fantastic gift for anyone close in your life. However, moms and Grandmas find these particulary charming. Head to Michaels and buy up a bunch of supplies and get started. If you aren't the super crafty person, try Scrapblog. This awesome site allows you to make a "digital" scrapbook using different "papers", "stickers", everything. I'm addicted to this site. Now you can get them printed to you and sent out like a real scrapbook. Of course this idea is a bit late for Christmas delivery, but if you print out a single page to give to them and let them know the rest is on the way, it's still a lovely gift.
If you want to give something right away, try an "instant" scrapbook from Hallmark. An instant scrapbook has pages, stickers, and layouts all ready set up. You just pop in your pictures and some journaling.

A spa day
No, not an expensive spa day at some ritzie spa, but an at home spa day. Head back to my handy craft site, or head to your local bookstore and jot down some home spa recipes. Put these recipes in some cute jars purchased at Michaels or a thrift shop and create labels on directions. Throw in a pair of slippers and voila-instant spa day.

A recipe book or recipe cards
If you come from a family with a lot of recipes passed down between generations, Christmas is a wonderful time to put them all together for easy access. If you want, you can put them in scrapbook form. If not, simply get some nice textured or patterned paper and type them out. I still reccomend using a scrapbook, because you want the recipes covered in plastic.

These are just a few ideas in case any of you ladies are stuck on what to get those important women in your life.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Gifts from the heart-BFF

When we were little and in elementary school, giving homemade gifts wasn't only practical, it was adorable. Than we got a bit older and it wasn't seen as so adorable anymore.

Well, in these struggling economic times, and at this certain age, making gifts has just come back into the picture. At least for me. I'm at the age where my friends and I are struggling to find careers and not just jobs, save money for a future while paying off student loans from your past and doing anything and everything in our power to get out of our parents house, and not just into an apartment with a futon and a milk crate end table.

Now is the time and the perfect season to put together cute little gifts from the heart and not only have them be sentimental, but cute and chic as well.

1. Photo Collage-
A couple years ago one of my best friends made me the nicest photo collage. It was straight from the heart and s0o simple and chic. She used a regular black and white copier to copy pics of us through the years. She resized on the copier as necessary. She then arranged the photos on a piece of paper and copied that and voila-instant photo collage. She added a couple of subdued stickers and put in a frameless frame and I loved it. (I'll be adding a pic tomorrow night!)
Along the lines of the photo collage is the shadow box. You can pick up a super cheap shadow box at your local craft store or at Ikea. These hold not only pics, but memontos as well. Pick a favorite concert you went to and include a copy of the ticket, the cd book and your favorite pic from that night. Or what about your beach trip? Throw some sand and shells in there and your fave pic. The possibilities are endless.

2. Bag or box o’ samples-
I don’t know about you ladies, but I looove samples! I love choosing my free samples at Sephora and always ask for samples at a cosmetics counter. It’s a great way to try a new product and a great way to collect a lot of junk. Over the past year I’ve collected tons of samples and haven’t used most of them. My best friend’s younger sister is just getting into make up and it’s hard to try out new products as she has a one year old little girl. I put together all the samples I’ve collected into a cosmetics case (a free gift with purchase!) and gave them to her. She was so thrilled.

3. Look kit-
I got this idea from ELF. They put together little kits to use for different looks-bronze goddess, smokey eye, etc. Why not do something similar for your bff? If she ever commented on a look on you she loved, or really liked a youtube tut, try to gather the stuff needed for the look and create a look kit. I was at CVS the other day and a lot of the makeup that is going to be discontinued was 50-75% off! This is a great alternative if you can’t afford all of the products to recreate a particular look.
4. A day of-
My best girlfriend and I have recently become obsessed with Twilight. If you guys share a common passion (which if you’re bff I’m sure you do) why not treat her to a “day of it”. If it’s a movie, take her to the movie to see it and discuss it after lunch. If it’s a book, grab two copies to read and discuss. If it’s a band and you can’t afford the concert, buy her the cd and blast it all day. At this age it’s hard to see my BFF has often as I want to, and if there’s any excuse for us to get together and act like little girls again, it’ll be a great gift.
5. A blast from the past
There has to be some embarrassing crush or hobby or something from your BFF’s past. If enough time has passed for them to get over it get something to remind them of it as a joke. I would get my bff Ally anything Nick Carter or New Kids on the Block related (come on that’s embarrassing!). Or I’d get my other BFF Anthony something Charmed or cartoon related (even though he still watches cartoons). I know you and your gals (and guys) have tons of inside jokes. This is the time to laugh and bring them up again.
6. A magazine subscription
I read so many magazines it’s not healthy. Magazines though are a great escape from the boring stuff we read at work or in class. Get your BFF a subscription to Cosmo or Glamour. Anything beauty related with the chance of seeing some half naked hotties is a good gift!
7. On the same theme as a magazine subscription how about a look book? For the past few years whenever I see an article, outfit, recipe, whatever from a magazine I rip it out and keep it. When it got to be a mess about a year ago, I bought a huge binder and put everything in there by section. I now have tons of hair ideas and tips, make up tricks and tutes, outfit ideas, home decorating ideas, recipes, etc. I looked through that new cosmo book with all the beauty tips and I have pretty much everyone of them just from ripping out the ideas from the mags and filing it away. Copy a few of your faves and put together a look/tute book for your BFF.
8. Any kind of “kit”
If your BFF is in some serious need for R&R put together a mini spa kit with a relaxing bubble bath, sleep mask and a candle. If she’s starting a new job how about a new planner and a desk frame for a “new job” kit. There are tons of kits out there and there are just way too many to list here, so be creative.
9. Anything homemade that doesn’t look like it came from a first grader.
Home made is chic again. My favorite resource for arts and craft tutes is Craftbits. This site gives step by step tutorials on any kind of craft imaginable. I made soaps last year for a swap partner and I can't even tell you how easy it was thanks to this site!

So time is limited, get on that Christmas shopping/creating for your BFF!

Deals of the Day-12/16

Here are your deals of the day!

-Mario Badescu-Free shipping with $30+
Free gift with purchase-Enter MBHOLIDAY

-Amazon Grocery-$25 off $75-Enter Q4DEAL25

-Benefit-Free rush hour with $30 purchase-Enter HOLIRUSH
Free shipping with $25 +-Enter DECEMBER

-Bath and Body Works-20% off entire site-Ends TODAY-Enter TWENTY

-Old Navy-10% off $75 and free shipping-Enter ONHOLIDAY

-Gap $20 off $100 and free shipping-Enter GIFT

-Mac-25% off holiday sets-WOW!

-Estee Lauder-Free 2nd day delivery with $35 purchase-Enter FREE2NDDAY

-ELF-Free make up dvd with a $25 purchase-Enter UPGRADE

Friday, December 12, 2008

Deals of the Day-12/12

So sorry for the TOTAL lack of actual posts lately. I'm done with classes Tuesday and have s0o0o much due, it's not even funny. However, next week I'll be posting every day a "Gift Guide from the Heart" for everyone in your life.

To tide you over until then, here are a couple of deals that crowded my in-box.

-ELF-50% off gift sets. Enter code 50GIFTS

-Avon-Free shipping with your $10 order. Enter code MISTLETOE

-Cherry Culture-20% off all orders $50+. Enter code CS20

-The Body Shop-30-50% off select gift sets.

Get out there and get shopping!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Deals of the Day-12/09

Target-Free shipping on most toys
Kohls-$10 Kohls cash for every $50 spent
Wet Seal-Today only!! 20% off the entire site and free shipping with a $15 purchase
Banana Republic-20% off your order of $125+ Enter BRHOLIDAY

Charlotte Russe:


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Guide to Outlet Shopping

I don't know about you, but I loooove outlet shopping. The deals that I get at outlets just get me all excited and giddy!

However, there is a right and a wrong way to shop at an outlet. Here are some general rules to follow to get some of the best deals:

-Do your research! Every outlet center usually has a website. Check it regularly as it updates sale. Outlet prices generally are great, but they are even better with an additional percent off.

-While you're at that website, register with them. Most of the time if you register with them and become a "member" they give you a voucher to pick up a coupon book. Sometimes you may need a AAA card, or something like that. Get this coupon book! It has extra percentages off or a free gift for most stores and stands at an outlet mall.

-Check if the individual stores have outlet mailing lists. I've signed up for the J.Crew, Banana Republic and Gap store emails, but they each have outlet emails that you have to sign up for seperately. They don't send coupons, but just alert you of upcoming sales.

-Be prepared! Most outlet malls (at least by me) are outdoors and not always compact. Wear comfortable shoes and easy to slip on and off clothes (for trying on stuff-get your mind out of the gutter!). Also, bring snacks and try to plan ahead to spot a good restaurant near the outlets. Outlet food courts seem to always be packed, overpriced and quite yucky to me.

-Get a map and plan a route of attack. The outlet that I frequent is kind of broken into sections. I give each section a priority and start at my favorite one. That way if I get tired, I won't have missed my favorite store.

-Try to go on a weekday! Outlets are always packed on the weekend-especially the next couple of weekends! If you go on a weekday,

Deals of the Day-12/3

God-I can't believe it's December 3rd all ready! Where does the time go?

I've been a bit down lately, because I haven't really felt the Christmas spirit yet and usually I am alll about the Christmas spirit. I hope that will change this weekend, because my dad the beau and I are going to get our Christmas tree on Friday!

Anywho, one thing I have been doing for Christmas is my shopping. I'm thrilled to say that I'm almost done!

Any who, here are the deals of the day that have flooded my inbox:

-Bath and Body Works-Free shipping on any on-line orders over $60 and $3 room sprays
-Express-Free shipping on any of their "top 10 gift items"-Today only!!
-Kohls-50% off Fisher Price Toys and 50% off Chaps sportswear for women-TODAY ONLY!
-Too Faced-Free shipping on all orders and a free full
-ELF Cosmetics-Free $25 gift certificate and a free Fandango movie ticket with any $20 purchase (WOW) Enter code DINE

Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday

I wanted to touch quickly on Black Friday. One of my fave parts of Thanksgiving is of course, looking through the millions of Black Friday sales flyers. However, with the struggling state of the economy, I knew that this Black Friday would be a bit more subdued.

The sales were impressive, but not sales that I haven't been seeing for the past few weeks. Inside consumers have said on multiple occasions that the sales are only going to get better as we get closer to Christmas. So if you are one who enjoys the hustle, bustle and plain insanity of the Black Friday sales, than go on out there. If you can wait though, I suggest you do. I think the sales are going to be just as good, if not better, next weekend.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Extra Cashh

As the economy continues to tumble people are looking for some ways to make extra cash to supplement their income, or people are looking for a little part time job. This is a situation where becoming a direct seller may come in handy.

What is direct selling? If you have ever purchased a lip gloss from Avon, a necklace from a jewelry party or attended the ever popular tupper ware party, you have participated in direct selling.

Direct selling is defined as the sale of a consumer product or service, person-person, away from a fixed retail location.

I know that in this tight economy, people may not be wanting to spend as much on lipglosses, tupperware or jewelry, but you can get some amazing deals with some of these companies and most companies have great customer service departments.

If you are good at networking, than direct selling is definitely right for you. My boyfriend one summer sold Cutco knifes. He started knowing only a handfull of people and through them made more and more contacts. Selling knives he made about 10 grand that summer! Granted, people were more willing to pay for super knives back then haha.

I searched the Direct Selling Association for some companies that I thought my readers may be interested in.

Fiftth Avenue Collection (jewelry)

For Every Body (candles, home decor)

Initials Inc. (personalized stuff-so cute!)

Lia Sophia (jewelry-great deals-my fave "party")

Mary Kay (cosmetics)

Party Lites (candles and accessories)

Purse Party

The Body Shop (Yup, that awesome store in the mall)

There are tonnnns more out there on everything from books, to home goods, to lingerie. Pretty much everything you would buy in a store, could be bought from direct selling. So go check out the Direct Selling site above and browse through the directory.

I myself am a direct seller and have been for a few years with Mark Cosmetics (of Avon). Check here for my on-line store. Contact me at if you have any questions about Mark or any of the Direct Selling info.

Deals of the Day-November 25th

With Black Friday quickly approaching, more and more deals seem to be popping up. Here's just a few that popped into my inbox today:

Benefit Cosmetics- Free gilded highlite pencil with any $30 purchase. Enter code GILDEDGO at checkout.

Mac Cosmetics- Free shipping (ends today!!). Enter code MYFAVE at checkout.

J Crew-Extra 20% off clearance items. Enter EXTRA20 at checkout.

Rampage-Friends and Family Sale-25% off your order! Enter THANKS25 at checkout.

Charlotte Russe- Buy one, get one 50% off the whole store! On-line this sale is from 11/23-1126 and in-store it's 11/25-11/26.

And this deal from Estee Lauder:

The Hollywood Blockbuster Set (worth over $300) is $49.50 with any fragrance purchase. So buy someone a fragrance for Christmas, and then treat yourself with this!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Deals of the Day

AVON Sales-60% off certain items and free shipping with a $10+ purchase. Enter code GOBBLE

Express Shirt Sale-Shirts start at $19.50 and all jeans and pants are $20 off. Online and in-store.

Victorias Secret-25% off an item. Ends Wednesday. Enter GET25

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Deals of the Day

Hello fabulously thrifty chicks (and fellas). Inspired by many bloggers I decided to create a Deal of the Day kind of column. This won't be daily, but whenever I spot good deal, whether it be a sale, clearance, coupon code, whatever. I can pass it on you guys!

Inspired my Kimberly I created an email address just to receive store newsletters at. This is a great way to be clued in on deals and coupon codes. If there's a store that you shop at a lot, or would like to, go to their website and sign up for their emails! I all ready received a 15% off code, 20% off coupon, free shipping and $5 off!

My deals of the day:

Cherry Culture-ALL NYX is 25% off! Enter code NYX25 at check out. Ends November 21st.

ELF Cosmetics-Buy one, get one free! Limited time offer. Enter 50off at checkout.

Free Shipping at 2008BEBE

15% off any purchas-in store or online (I don't know if this can be used with the $30 off $100 coup floating around.)-Enter 4849 at check out.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

My Pretty Pink Box-November

Kimberly Tia introduced me to a really awesome website My Pretty Pink Box. My Pretty Pink Box comes out every month and contains samples, coups and full size products from different up and coming beauty companies and e-tailers. This months adorable box cost $14 with shipping and the cost varies each month depending on the sponsors. The date of the sale is put on the website each month and this month it sold out in only 2 hours! This is a great gift idea ladies: for the beauty fiend in your life or yourself!

My November Box:

I hate the color pink, but even I think this is cute.

Dash Minerals warm matte.

Coupon/Gift Certificate for a free multi-purpose mineral from Terra Firma Cosmetics.

Jesse's Girl full size pigment in Platinum

Samples from Mark Cosmetics

Lure Beauty glitter sample-reminds me of Dorothy's red slippers!

Conditioning treatments from Mixed Chicks

Pouch from Romance Parties by Danielle..what could be inside?

A cute key chain of massage oil-LOVE IT!!

Pink glittery soap from Soap N'Bath..look at those sparkles!

Last, but not least, a $25 coup/gift certificate to The Model Brow

Overall, I love-love-love My Pretty Pink Box! I can't wait for December's to come out. It's a great way to try new products, new companies and to spoil yourself!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Weekend Review

This past Friday was my 4 year anniversary with my bf. Last year we were apart for our anniversary, so I wanted this one to be special. My fave city (next to NYC of course) is Boston and Jason had never been. So we planned a weekend in Beantown to:
1. Celebrate
2. Do something different
3. Introduce Jason to the city I hope to one day call home

We left Friday and just chilled at our hotel and ate at the Pub attached to the hotel. We stayed at Club Quarters in the Financial District. It was nice, but the neighborhood sucked! There were cafes and places to eat everywhere that were ALL closed because they just catered to the money makers during the week.

Saturday we went to the JFK Museum and Library (Yes, I like history so I had a totally dorky weekend planned).

It was absolutely gorgeous and right on the water. It was really interesting and had some pretty cool stuff in there. I spend my summers on Cape Cod so there isn't a lot I didn't know about the Kennedys.

After we had a quick bite at the museum and had to wait for the bus to come, we walked along the waterfront. This was November, in Boston, and we were walking around comfortably in long sleeved tees.

After the Museum we headed over to Boston Commons for the Freedom Trail. The Freedom Trail is a walk, a loooong walk, around Boston highlighting it's historical stops. We saw the burial grounds of Sam Adams (not just a beer!), Ben Franklin, Paul Revere, we saw the oldest school in America, the oldest building in America, the U.S.S. Constitution and passed a lot of good shopping and eats along the way. About 5 miles later though, we were EXHAUSTED and it was beginning to rain. Time to head back to the hotel.

That night we headed to the North End for our fancy dinner. We ate at an italian restaurant: Luccas. S0o0o much food and s0o amazingly delicious.

Sunday we spent the day shopping and just walking around. It was a truly fab weekend.

So, why am I blogging about all this? Well, first of all I had a great time and wanted to write about! Secondly (is that a word?) it was a TOTALLY affordable trip. If you're a North-Easterner or New England-er Boston is a really great weekend trip.
Cost breakdown:
-Gas ($1.95 a gallon in MA!) Total: About 40 something (the boy had filled up prior to us leaving)
-Hotel: $154 a night (Club Quarters). The room was really tiny, but it was clean and comfy. The amenities were decent if we were to actually be there a lot: purified bottle water, free wi-fi, free cardio equipment delivered to your room, etc. It was in a weird neighborhood but two blocks from the subway and some decent shopping.
-JFK Museum-$8 with old student ID (shhh!)
-Freedom Trail-FREE! A few of the stops (Paul Revere's house) cost like $4, but you don't have to stop in them to get the full ambience
-Charlie Ticket (Subway pass)-We spent $12 on the day to get around the wholllle city

Boston is a great walking city and everything is super close! You can get as fancy or low-key as you want and a lot of the "touristy" things are super affordable.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Happiest Place on Earth

Just another sign that the economy must be doing baddd. The Walt Disney World resorts is offering an amazing deal on their parks and cruises. If you're a bit strapped for cash, or just want to relive those golden childhood memories, than now is the perfect time to take a Disney vaca.

Walt Disney World (the one in Orlando) is offering a 7 night stay for the price of 4. If you get a 4 day/4 night vacation package (this includes your Disney hotel and Disney park pass) than you get 3 nights (hotel and pass) for free! That's a huuuuge savings. This deal is good from January 4th to June 27th (with Easter week blacked out). If you travel there before March 29th you get the above package and a $200 Disney gift card.

Disney World is the only awesome Disney package. Great deals also extends to their cruises. If you sail on a 4 or 7 night Disney cruise between January 31st through March 8th and March 21st through March 28th than you have the option to buy a 3-night Disney cruise for just $99 a person! The discounted cruise can be any time between August 13th and December 17th.
I feel like whipping out my mouse ears all ready!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Good News Fashionistas!

I am so excited! It has been confirmed today that Alexandar McQueen will be teaming up to do a collection for Target! He will be the first to participate in Target's new "Designer Collaboration" series. The collection is slated to hit stores and on March 1 and will be sold until April 11th. Mark your calendars ladies!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

High End Dupes

So part of being fabulous, is of course looking fabulous. I've become obsessed with watching beauty tutes on youtube. Unfortunately, I can't afford a lot of the looks, because a lot of them rely heavily on high end brands. Everyone likes to spend their money differently, and I just can't afford to spend a lot of money on cosmetics, especially when there are great and affordable alternatives. This is going to be a looooong post, so bare with me. I've scoured the net and blogs and compiled a comprehensive list of "dupes". High end products and shades and their drugstore counterparts. The texture, quality may not be the same, this is just based on color.
However, I can say that milani, jane, prestige and NYX cosmetics are amazing. Not only for their price, but their overall performance is just great.

First, with the eyeshadows, pigments, etc.
High End Brand/Color Drug Store Brand/Color
Mac Copper Sparkle Pigment L’Oreal HIP Tenacious
Mac Old Gold Pigment L’Oreal HIP Rebel
Mac Blue Brown Pigment L’Oreal HIP Intrepid
Mac Coppering NYX Copper
Mac Cranberry NYX Rust
Mac Amber Lights NYX Golden
Mac Juxt NYX Springleaf, Milani Garden Mist
Mac Boy Meets Girl NYX Antique Gold
Mac Swish NYX Spring Flower
Mac Parrot NYX Ocean
Mac All that Glitters NYX Champagne
Mac Naked Lunch NYX Sahara
Mac Vellum NYX Opal
Mac Rose Blanc NYX High light
Mac Satin Taupe NYX Iced Mocha
Mac Fleshpot NYX Echo Lipstick
Mac Moth Brown NYX Alaska
Mac Beautiful Iris NYX Frosted Lilac
Mac Electric Eel NYX Irises
Mac Hepcat NYX Violet, Prestige Blossom
Mac Humid NYX Mermaid Green, Milani Clover
Mac Nocturnelle NYX Beauty Queen, Milani Shock
Mac Parfait Amour NYX Purple
Mac Passionate NYX Cherry
Mac Star n’Rockets NYX Luxor
Mac Amber Lights Milani Sun Goddess and Desert Sun
Mac Blue Noir Prestige Ink
Mac Cork Cover Girl Swiss Chocolate
Mac Electric Eel Milani Atlantis
Mac Glare Prestige Golden Sun
Mac Goldmine Prestige Golden Retriever
Mac Hypnotique Prestige Saturn
Mac Melody Jane Millionaire
Mac Midnight Blue Jane Blue Jeans
Mac Pink Freeze Prestige Ballet
Mac Pink Venus Milani Taffy
Mac Rose Prestige Flushed
Mac Sketch Milani Marooned
Mac Unreally Blue Milani Blue Jeans
Bare Escentuals Cupcake Glimpse Milani Illusion
Bare Escentuals Queen Tiffany Milani Java Bean
Bare Escentuals Socialite Glimmer Milani Java Bean
Benefit Lemon Aid Jane Dream Cream
Cargo Nepal Milani Flare
Clinique Bronze Satin Cover Girl Tapestry Taupe
Clinique Golden Lynx Cover Girl Glazed Ginger
Clinique Silver Lining Jane It’s a Girl
Clinique Strawberry Fudge Milani Illusion
Dior GoldFusion L'oreal Enlightened Emerald
MAC Aquadisiac Jane Millionare
MAC Atlas ULTA Silk
MAC Bamboo Wild and Crazy Wild Guava
MAC Banshee Milani Spice
MAC Beautiful Iris ULTA Iris
MAC Black Tied Covergirl Shimmering Onyx, Milani Storm, Jane Clubbing
MAC Brule Milani Almondine
MAC Camel Revlon Pro Bamboo
MAC Coco NYX Beanie
MAC Coquette Almay Khaki Eye Gel
MAC Crystal L'Oreal Beauty Queen On-the-Loose
MAC Dazzleray Pigment NYC Loose Sparkle Eye Dust in Champagne
MAC Deep Truth Loreal On the Loose in Night Fever
MAC Dementhe Milani Clover
MAC Electra Jane Hi Ho Silver
MAC Embark Jane Brownie Points
MAC Guacamole Milani Limbo Lime
MAC Glare ULTA Silk
MAC Jest Milani Peachy Peach, Maybelline Pink Sands, ULTA Bermuda Sand
MAC Jewel Blue Jane Eye Zing in Surfer Girl
MAC Kicky Blue L'Oreal Holographic Blue
MAC Leisure Time L'Oreal OTL in Flash Light
MAC Little Madame Milani Illusion
MAC Medowland L'Oreal Wear Infinite in Glistening Sea
MAC Melody Jane Millionare
MAC Metamorph Rimmel Hope
MAC Mulch Milani Java Bean, L'oreal HIP in Saucy
MAC Naked Lunch Wet n' Wild Fine Wink
MAC Nylon Milani Classic Beige
MAC Paradisco Flirt! Feeling Hot
MAC Perverted Pearl Milani Silver Bullet
MAC Shale Milani Icy Plum
MAC Shimmermoss ULTA Luna
MAC Silver Milani in Mercury
MAC Sketch Milani Marooned
MAC Shroom Jane Magic Mushroom, Wet 'n Wild Flirt Shimmer Stick
MAC Soba ULTA Toast
MAC Sprout Prestige Wasabi, Milani Garden Mist
MAC Steamy Milani Clover, ULTA Luna
MAC Sumptuous Olive Milani Antique Gold, ULTA Golden Olive
MAC Trax Flirt! Glamourazzi, Milani Desire
MAC Vanilla Wild and Crazy Mist Over Me 3110, Milani Snow Frost
MAC Vex Max Factor Mint Matinee
MAC Woodwinked Milani Golden Bronze
NARS Ashes to Ashes Maybelline Silken Taupe
Stila Barefoot Contessa Jane Magic Mushroom
Stila Go Lightly Milani Golden Bronze
Stila Grace Ulta Plum Smoke
Stila Holly Golightly Milani Golden Bronze, Jane Magical Mushroom
Stila Kitten Sally Girl Silver Lining, ULTA Bermuda Sand
Stila Pigalle ULTA Chianti
Stila Ray Milani Sun Goddess, Milani Desert Sun,
Stila Twig Milani Spice
Urban Decay Acid Rain Milani Garden Mist
Urban Decay Asphyxia Milani Enchantment
Urban Decay Chains Milani Antique Gold
Urban Decay Green Goddess ULTA Mist
Urban Decay Lounge Physician's Formula Down To Earth
Urban Decay Midnight Cowboy Milani Sheer Sand, Sephora Old Rose; Cover Girl Bedazzled Biscotti
Urban Decay Oilslick Covergirl Shimmering Onyx, Milani Storm, Jane Clubbing, Presige Ink
Urban Decay Roach Max Factor Sable
Mac Vex Max Factors Mint Matinee
Mac Vapor Prestige Chilly
Mac Unreally Blue Milani’s Blue Jeans
Mac Sushi Flower Prestige Love
Mac Steamy Milani Clover, Ulta Luna

Now, the foundations, face products:

Origins Zero Oil Foundation Bonne Bell No Shine Oil Controlling Gel
Prescriptives Magic Liquid Potion Foundation Revlon Skinlights Illumination Lotion
Stila Pivotal Skin Foundation Almay Nearly Naked
Yves St. Laurent Touche Eclat Revlon Skinlights Illusion Wand in Luminous Touch

The Blushes:

Nars Orgasm Blush Milani Luminous Blush
Benefit Benetint
L'Oreal Pinch Of Colour in Blushing, L'Oreal Translucide Gel Blush in Blushing Glow, Sonia Kashuk Lip & Cheek Tint in Sheer Bliss, The Body Shop Lip & Cheek Tint, Wet 'N' Wild Ink Stains,
Benefit Blush in Dandelion Almay Blush in Petal, Jane Blushing Cheeks Blush in Blushing Blossom, L'oreal Blush Delice in Strawberry Tart, Maybelline Blush in Seashell Pink, Maybelline Blush in Sweetheart Rose, Maybelline Blush in Wash of Winter, Clinique Blush in Pink
Bobbi Brown Blush in Blushed: Jane Blushing Cheeks Blush in Blushing Orchid, L'Oreal Blush in Rustica
Cargo Catalina Maybelline in Seashell Pink
Chanel Caprice blush Maybelline Mauve Pulse
MAC Blush in Angel: Maybelline Blush in Packed Powder Pink, Maybelline Pure Blush in Pure Blossom, Almay Stay Smooth Beyond Powder Blush in Petal
MAC Blush in Cubic Jane Blushing Cheeks Blush in Blushing Petal,
MAC Blush in Fleur Power CoverGirl Blush in Rose Silk, Maybelline Pure Blush in Pure Rose & Pure Peach, L'Oreal Blush in Sunset
MAC Blush in Margin Rimmel Blush in Apricot, NYX Terra Cotta
MAC Blush in Peacher Rimmel blush in Apricot
Mac Plum Foolery L'oreal Color of Hope blush
MAC Blush in Prism Jane Blushing Cheeks Blush in Blushing Baby Doll, Rimmel Blush in Bronze
MAC Cheekhue in Da Da Delight Revlon Cream Blush in Berry Fliratious
Nars Deep Throat Rimmel Apricot Blush
NARS Exhibit A Milani Blush in Mango
NARS Laguna Bronzer L'oreal HIP Bronzer in Blessed
NARS Lovejoy Flirt! Caramel Belle
NARS Outlaw NYC Darling Donner Blush
NARS Sin L'Oreal Feel Naturale Blush in Mauvelous, L'Oreal Feel Naturale Blush in Plume, Revlon Skinlights Eye Cheek Color in Berry, L'oreal Color of Hope blush, Milani Temptation, Rimmel blush in Temptation, Cover Girl Cheekers in Natural Twinkle, Maybelline in Berry Winey & Bohemian Blush
NARS Torrid L'Oreal Front Page Peach,
NARS Antibes multiple Wet 'n' Wild Twist Up Blush StickScandalous
NARS Copacabana multiple: Wet 'n' Wild Twist Up Blush Stick in Flirt
NARS Portofino Wet 'n' Wild Twist Up Blush Stick Coy
NARS South Beach multiple Wet 'n' Wild Twist Up Blush StickBrazen Babe
Stila Camellia Wet 'n Wild MegaGlo Face Illuminator in Toasty
Stila Rose Wet 'N' Wild MegaGlo Face Illuminator in Rosy
MAC MSF Physicians Formula Baked Bronzer

Estee Lauder Eye Defining Pencil in Brown Velvet Wet & Wild Brow/Liner Pencil in #652
MAC Liquid Liner Revlon Colorstay Liquid Eyeliner, Prestige liquid eyeliner, Wet 'N' Wild Liquid Eyeliner
MAC Teddy Maybelline Bronze Gleam
Clinique Quickliner Covergirl Perfect Point Plus
Lancome Le Stylo Waterproof CoverGirl Perfect Point Plus

Now those lips:

Aveda Matte Huckleberry Lipstick Bonne Bell Autumn Rose
Aveda lipstick in Sheer Ambrosia Bonne Bell Grapevine Whine lip gloss, Bonne Bell Lip-Lix in Grapevine Whine, Bonne Bell Cin-a-Money
Bobbi Brown Lip Gloss in Brown Jane Lipstick in Bareberry, or Bye Bye Brown, Rimmel Lip Vinyl in Mmmmm
Bobbi Brown Beige Gold lipstick L'Oreal Hip Honey lipstick
Bobbi Brown Blackberry lipstick Revlon SuperLustrous in Blackberry
Bobbi Brown Nude lipstick Revlon Pro Neutrality Cream
Bobbi Brown Raisin lipstick: L'Oreal Colour Supreme lipstick in Real Raisin
Bobbi Brown Redwood Revlon Pro Burnished Cream
Bobbi Brown Ruby Shimmer Jane Lig Huggers in Cinnamon Stick
Bobbi Brown Fudge lipgloss Revlon Pro Molasses lipgloss
Bobbi Brown Petal lip gloss Bonne Bell Cotton Candy Lip Lites, NYC Brush on in Beautiful
Clinique Air Kiss Glosswear Jane Mirage Lip Dips pot lipstick, Almay 1 Coat lipgloss in Blush
Cargo Congo Lipstick L'Oreal Wine and Dine Lipstick
Chanel Copacabana lipstick Rimmel Asia, Milani Pink Chiffon
Chanel Berries lipstick Jane Best of Berries lipstick
Chanel Metallic Vamp lipstick: L'Oreal Mica,
Chanel Rouge Noir lipstick Wet 'n' Wild Blackest Red lipstick
Chanel Glossimer in Black Tie Milani Desire
Chanel Glossimer in Blizzard Wet 'N' Wild Lipgloss in Bronzeberry
Chanel Glossimer in Giggle Bonne Bell Lip d'Votion in Sweet Mocha, Neutragena Chic gloss
Chanel Glossimer in Twinkle Maybelline Wet Shine Diamonds Liquid in Liquid Gold, Caboodles in Smile
Chanel Lip Liner in Nude Wet 'n Wild #666, Max Factor liner in Nude
Christian Dior Rose Souffle lipstick L'Oreal Colour Riche Tendre Mauve lipstick
Clinique Black Honey Lipstick: Maybelline Wet Shine Lipstick in Drippin' Honey, Rimmel Lipstick in Revolution, Bonne Bell Grapevine Whine lip gloss, Bonne Bell Lip-Lix in Grapevine Whine, Bonne Bell Cin-a-Money
Clinique Cocoplum lipgloss Maybelline Berry Spacey lip polish
Clinique Honey Bee Glosswear Jane Save the Earth Lip Dips pot lipstick
Clinique Lipstick in Waterviolet Maybelline Wet Shine Diamonds in Mauvey Rock
Clinique Lipstick in Pink Beach Maybelline Wet Shine Diamonds in Pink Diamonds
Clinique Heather Plum lipstick Almay Serene lipstick
Clinique Nude Ice lipstick Jane Megabites lipstick in Pineapple Delight
Clinique Sweet Honey lipstick Jane Rosy Outlook lipstick
Clinique Berry Buff lipstick Cover Girl Coco Blush lipstick
Clinique Buff lipstick Bonne Bell Lip Gear in Citrus City, L'Oreal Tawny lipstick
Clinique Lipstick in Black Violet Bonne Bell Grapevine Whine lip gloss, Bonne Bell Lip-Lix in Grapevine Whine, Bonne Bell Cin-a-Money
Clinique Tenderheart Lipstick Maybelline Wet Shine Diamonds in Pink Topaz, Natural Glow Wood Hyacinth lipstick, Covergirl Spice it Up lipstick, Jane flipstick #3 in Solar Flare
Estee Lauder All Day Lipstick in Rose Sapphire Avon Triple Benefit Lipstick in Rosetone
Estee Lauder Bare Buff lipstick Maybelline Nude lipstick
Estee Lauder Double Matte lipstick Cover Girl Self Renewing lipstick in Toasted Almond
Hard Candy Pussy Cat lipstick Maybelline Pink Perle lipstick, Jane Night Shift lipstick, Revlon Super Lustrous lipstick in Bold Berry
Lancome Beige Marilyn lip brio gloss L'Oreal Rouge Pulp in Exposed
Lancome Juicy Tube in Bonfire L'Oreal Colour Juice in Melonade
Lancome Juicy Tubes in Chai Freeze NYC Liquid Lipstick Pen in Kerry
Lancome Juicy Tube in Miracle Jane MegaBites Glossy Gloss in Paper Doll; Revlon Skinlights Glosslights in Rose Quartz; Wet 'n Wild MegaFlavors Lip Gloss in Cherries Jubilee; Maybelline Wet Shine Diamonds Liquid in Fairy Romantic
Lancome Marshmallow lipstick Revlon Lip Glide in Patent Leather Pink
Lancome Exotique lipstick L'Oreal Brown Sugar lipstick
Lancome Platinum lipstick Jane Go Platinum lipstick
Lancome Stargloss in Starlight Sally Hansen Diamond Lip Treatment in Diamond
Laura Mercier Very Bitten lipstick Jane Flipstick in Jammin'
MAC Lip Lacquer in Acrylicka Maybelline Lip Polish in Mauvie Star
MAC Love Nectar lusterglass Milani Coral Shimmer lipgloss
MAC Oak Rimmel Femme Fatale
MAC Lip Pencil in Plum Revlon Colorstay Plum
MAC Lip Pencil in Spice Cover Girl CG Smoothers Lip Liner in Cinnamon Slick, Wet 'n Wild #712 or #666; Avon - Glimmersticks Lip Liner in Glimmer Simply Spice
MAC Lip liner Stripdown Rimmel Femme Fatale
MAC Lipliner Whirl Rimmel Darling Nude
MAC Lipstick in Midimauve Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Smokey Rose
MAC Lipstick in O: Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Copperglow Berry, Jordana Bahama Bronze
MAC Blonde on Blonde Wet 'n Wild 770A Gold Rush
MAC Bubbles lipstick Wet 'n' Wild #516A lipstick
MAC Carnal lipstick L'Oreal Wine and Dine lipstick
MAC Creme de la Femme lipstick Rimmel Asia, Milani Pink Chiffon
MAC Dainty Cake lipstick NYC Firefly #306b
MAC Delish lipstick Wet 'n' Wild Ice Cream lipstick
MAC Diva lipstick Jane lipstick in Really Raisin
MAC Film Noir lipstick L'Oreal Colour Endure lipstick in Hot Fudge
MAC Flavour lipstick Maybelline Nude Pink lipstick
MAC Frenzy lipstick Revlon Bamboo Bronze lipstick
MAC Frou lipstick Bonne Bell Vanilla Volts lipstick
MAC Grid lipstick Bonne Bell LipGear in Traffic Jam
MAC Haku lipstick Wet 'n' Wild #546-A lipstick
MAC High Tea lipstick Rimmel Airy Fairy, Milani Sheer Lipstick in Amaterro
MAC Hyper lipstick Revlon Granite lipstick
MAC Lust lipstick: Maybelline Great Wear lipstick in Silver Lilac, Revlon Virtual Violet lipstick
MAC Modum lipstick Almay Malt lipstick
MAC O Lipstick: Jordana Bahama Bronze; Revlon Mulled Cider
MAC Odyssey lipstick Bonne Bell LipGear in Berry Bash
MAC Pervette lipstick Jane HipLips in Pink Slip
MAC Retro lipstick Jane Lipstick in Browned Down Red
MAC Rockocco lipstick Milani Candy Apple lipstick
MAC Sequin lipstick Almay Sequin one coat lipstick
MAC Strawberry Blonde Victoria's Secret Love Bite
MAC Strength lipstick Avon Brilliant Moisture Lipstick in Tiger's Eye
MAC Touch lipstick Jane Browned Down Red lipstick,
MAC Twig lipstick Jane LipHuggers in Kind Of Carob;
Neutrogena Lipstick in Rose Suede
MAC Underworld Neutrogena in South Beach
MAC Viva Glam II lipstick Jane Flipstick in Roseland, Maybelline Great Wear Lipstick in Flesh
MAC Wuss lipstick Avon Spice lipstick, Wet 'n' Wild #547A lipstick
MAC XS lipstick Wet 'n' Wild #547A lipstick
MAC Lipglass in C-thru Milani Secret #12 gloss
MAC Lipglass in Chai Bonne Bell Lip Lites in Cappuccino
MAC Lipglass in Dreamy Wet 'n Wild Precious Metals Lip Gloss in Sugar Plum
MAC Lipglass in Explicit Bonne Bell Lip Lites in Shoutin' Sugar
MAC Lipglass in Freezefrost Wet 'n Wild in Shimmy Shimmer
MAC Lipglass in Fancy That Maybelline Wet Shine Diamonds Liquid in Marquise Peach
MAC Impish Lipglass Rimmel Vinyl Lip in Eastend Snob
MAC Lovechild lipglass Rimmel Snog
MAC Lipglass in Lust Bonne Bell Lip Lites in Cappuccino, or Mocha Mousse
MAC Lipglass in Lychee Luxe Neutrogena Lip Gloss in First Blush, NYC in Sungold Pink
MAC Lipglass in Nymphette Rimmel Lip Gloss in Airy Fairy
MAC Lipglass in Nico L'Oreal’s Glass Shines in Luminous Lilac & Lilac Crystal
Oh Baby Neutrogena’s Lip Gloss in Glimmer, Milani’s Serendipity gloss, L'Oreal’s Glass Shine in Bronze Radiance
Oyster Girl Neutrogena Lip Gloss in Tickled
Pink Clash Bonne Bell’s Lip Lites in Berry 'Nilla Creme

I only put together a few of these myself, they were mostly compiled from blogs (dimespot), message boards (spektra and makeup geek) and youtube vids.

This has turned into more of a beauty blog than I thought, but coming up I have some cute and cheap Christmas gift ideas, recipes and holiday decorations. Oh, and of course more beauty stuff :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Kleancolor 12 Color Eyeshadow Palette Review

In my recent Cherry Culture haul I purchased a Kleancolor 12 color palette in number 123 for only $4.

In contrast to my last review on the Amuse Metallic Palette, I was really quite surprised with this palette.

The shadows themselves are small, but you don't need a lot of swipes to get a surprisingly good color pay off. I especially loved the three brown shades on the left, as well as the vibrant blue in the third column. My swatches (I'm sorry for the super blurry pic and super pale hand!) were taken with out a base and were two swipes. I can't wait to do a look with this palette. I'm thinking maybe a brown and aqua eye (to match my bedroom). I definitely plan on purchasing the other Kleancolor palettes.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

MiNtY mOnEy

Being broke is not fabulous. In fact, it is the opposite of fabulous. In this stressful economic time, it seems that our paychecks just don't go as far as they used to.

For young women (and men) out there, it's so important to stay on track with your finances. If you spiral out of control for just one month, you can be paying for that for years to come.

There are so many resources online to help you budget and keep track of your spending. One of my new favorite sites is Mint. You link all of your accounts to this secure website (no identity theft here) and it keeps track of your spending at any given time. It even breaks your spending down into pie charts (I spent THAT much on meals?).

This great tool can show you where some of your financial "leaks" here and help you to plug them up! The site also has budgeting advice, and advice on loans (home, school, car, etc.)

Another fabulous online tool that I love is ING Direct. I opened up an ING savings account almost a year ago and it's amazing the interest I've all ready attained. It's so simple to set up. You link to an existing checking or savings account and set up automatic withdrawls. I have money taken out of my account automatically each pay day, so I don't even realize it's gone. When you're ready to spend the money, just transfer it into your linked checking account. Voila! You never have to fill out a deposit slip or run to the ATM.

I know this wasn' the most interesting of posts, but we can't be fabulously thrifty without some money in the first place!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Amuse Metallic Eyeshadow Review

In my first Cherry Culture haul I purchased the Amuse Metallic Eyeshadow Palette in Midnight Lace. It was only $3.00 and I liked the colors, as well as the pretty lace pattern on the eyshadows.

Well, this is a definitely a case of where you get for what you paid for. I'll go color by color.
The first color (pinkish?): No color pay off at all! This was simply the sparkles and shimmer. It looks so vibrant in the palette and then nothing, and I swiped quite a bit.
Second color (blue): This was definitely the most pigmented of the bunch. It would be nice for a soft wash of color. The blue wasn't true to the color in the palette, but it was still kinda pretty.
Third color (silver): This also had close to zero pigmentation with several swipes. The shimmer this one gave off was pretty though. If you want to make a matte color, shimmery, this would probably do the job.
Fourth color (green): This also had decent pigmentation, but again nothing to write home about!
Fifth color (black): This color had good pigmentation for a soft smokey eye look.

All in all, I got what I expected out of this palette. Remember, it's not a bargain if you don't need it, or if it doesn't work!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Home Gym-Part 2

Ok, here's another work out dvd review. My home gym series won't only consist of dvd's, but since that's a huge part of my home gym, it's going to focus on these babies.

I have puhlenttyy of guilty pleasures when it comes to tv. If there's a chick-esque show on tv, chances are I watch and I dig it. One of my favoorite guilty pleasures is the "The Girls Next Door." I know, it's terrible, but it's terrible in a delicious sort of way.

Even though the Girls Next Door are now done and Hef has new gf's (have u seen them? YuKkA), Bridget, Kendra and Holly will always hold a special place in my heart.

Where is this all going and how do this deal with excercise? I'll tell you. I actually purchased the Girls Next Door work out dvd. It's a series of three 15-minute excercise segments, each one being hosted by one of the gals.
Here's the DVD's offical description:
Grab your towels and your hottest T's and shorts because The Girls Next Door are going to make you sweat! The Playboy Mansion is home to Holly Bridget and Kendra but today it's the location for your private training session with Hef's one and only Three. Whether it's Kendra's Hot Hip-Hop Romp the more demanding Bridget's Boot Camp Challenge or the sheer fun of Holly's Sexy Silhouette Shape Up you'll find each one equally exhilarating!

Now, this dvd will not get you a playboy body, but it is good if you're in a bit of a time crunch.

The dvd starts with Holly (she has to be first you know) and she does a quick toning work out using dumbbells and one of those big excercise ballie things. This isn't a good cardio work out at all, but it is great if you need a quick toning excercise. It focuses on the upper body and abs. I've incorporated some of the moves into my normal, every day work out.

Second is my personal fave, Bridget. She does a sort of "Bunny Boot Camp". This is a bit more intense and actually does work up a bit of a sweat. I do this at the end of a normal cardio work out, because I seriously feel it working in my legs. If I only have time to squeeze in a 15 minute work out overall, this one is highly reccomended.

Third is of course, Kendra. She's in KILLER shape, but her work out portion falls a bit flat for me. The first couple minutes is just her dancing. Am I supposed to dance with her or like her, or what? She finishes out the work out with some martial arts moves. Again, gets my heart rate going a bit, but I didn't need someone to show me how to do these moves. I watched the power rangers, I know what's going on.

Overall, this dvd is decent. It's not going to blast you into shape, but would be great if you only had a couple minutes to pop in a dvd and do a quick work out. However, this dvd alone will not get you Kendra's bod. Sorry!

Monday, October 13, 2008

NYX Pencils Review

My recent Cherry Culture haul (see the post I made about 2 seconds ago!) included two NYX eye pencils. The first being an eyeshadow pencil in purple and the second being a dual ended liner in black and silver glitter.

I was really impressed with the consistency and the color pay off for the purple pencil. It was a creamy consistency that glided on very easily. This could be a fun, funky liner (it is on the thick side, no tiny detail lining with this baby) or a great base for a deep purple look. I chose the purple, because I'm looking to do some vibrant looks as my normal style is a bit on the bland side.

I also liked the dual ended liner. The black is again thicker than your average liner, but this also makes a bit easier to use for newbies such as myself. The black also glided on very easily and the color pay off wasn't chalky at all. The silver did tug a bit, but I guess that was due to the glitter.

Eyeshadow pencil: $3.00
Dual ended liner: $4.00

Would I buy again:
Definitely! In fact, I plan on buying several more of the eyeshadow pencils quite soon!

Shopping Weekend Galore

This past week I thought I would do my part to help boost the economy by spending some hard earned cash. I don't want you all to think this is my regular shopping habits. I shop (as in actually purchasing items, and not just window shopping) maybe once a month, or once every other month. I've chosen to live at home for a bit longer to save money for my future, not splurge every other paycheck on clothing and stuff.

However, between working full time, classes and homework at night, as well as studying for my next state certification exam, I decided to splurge a bit. However, all of the items you are about to see added up to less than $120!! WooHoO.

First, I finally received my Cherry Culture haul. I've read a lot of complaints about Cherry Culture being slow in terms of delivery. My order was completed within a day, but than it got stuck at the post office in California for over a week and a half!

They have so many fun brands that I've never heard of, and most importantly they are super cheap! I was also able to order my first NYX products!
I ordered:
Amuse Metallic Eyeshadow palette in midnight lace
Amuse Sweetheart eyeshadow palette in blue sky
Amuse Tinted Lip Plumping in deep nude
Kleancolor 12 Color Eyeshadow Palette
NYX Concealer Magic Wand in fair
NYX Double Sided Eye Pencil in black and silver glitter
NYX Eyeshadow Trio in aquamarine
NYX Girls Round Lipgloss in cafe latte
NYX Girls Round Lipgloss in apricot
NYX Jumbo Eyeshadow Pencil in purple
NYX Round Lipstick in frosted flakes
NYX Single Eyeshadow in apricot moose
...And finally two Starry Eyeshadow Kits (BOGO free, how could I resist?)

All of this comes to the grand total of: $40.50 (with free shipping!!)
(I will be doing a review of all the products starting with the two NYX eye pencils)

Next was my Target/Walmart run. I loove the Tar-jay! They not only have the cutest housewares and stationary, but the cutest clothes. I was good and the only thing I picked up were these adorable pajama shorts. It's all ready getting a bit chilly around here, but my landlords have the heat pumping constantly, so these are perfect for me! Best part- they were 75% off and only $1.75 each!
Grand total: $3.50

At Wal-Mart I bought this basic grey tee. Perfect for working out or for wearing under a sweater.
Grand total: $3.00

Finally, my boyfriend and I finished off the week by going to the mall and the outlets by us, Woodbury Commons.

I was really in the need for some basic camis to wear under some of my work shirts, but the bra top ones make the girls not work appropriate. I was so happy when I stumbled upon these basic camis from Forever 21 for $2.50 each! After seeing how they wash up, I plan on stocking up on a few more.
Grand total: $7.50

The outlets were PACKED, and sometimes it's hard to shop in situations like that, but I got through it.

In Banana Republic I bought three work shirts, all on clearance I might add. Oh, and did I mention there was an additional 30% off clearance? I love outlets!
First shirt:

I looved this shirt at first sight. It's a soft aqua, with an empire waist and tie wrap. It's forgiving in the stomach region, but also cute because it plays up the bust area. Throw on a white cami underneath (like I'm wearing at work today!) and instant chicness.
Cost: $11.99 with 30% off=$8.39

Second Shirt:

This is a cream shirt with a beige-ish rose outline pattern on it. Usually, I don't like patterns, but I liked the subtlety of this. There's a slight puff to the sleeve, and this is definitely another work option.
Cost: $21.99 with 30% off-$15.40

Third Shirt:

This shirt is a sleeveless shirt and would look perfect under a blazer for work. Again, I'm usually terrified of patterns, but I guess my fashion horizon is expanding!
Cost: $21.99 with 30% off-$15.40

FINALLY, I made my first Cosmetics Company Outlet purchase, as well as my first Mac purchase. Their prices compared to Mac are pretty good. I bought two blushes for $10.25 each! I figured since the new limited edition Revlon blushes are $12, I could justify this Mac purchase.

The first blush is a beauty powder blush (I honestly don't know the difference between that and a regular blush) and is in a color called shy beauty. I didn't notice how shimmery it was until I took out in the light, but I still like it. It's a coral color, and blends into my skin for a natural kind of peachy glow.
The second blush I bought was emote. This color is famous for it's contouring powers. Since contouring was a skill I definitely want to work on, I thought this was the perfect time purchase it!
Total: $20.50

S0o0o, my grand total for my shopping week was: $114.19!!
Not too shabby!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Now We're CoOkiN

I LoVe cookbooks. They are one of my favorite books to just spend time browsing through. Though I currently have the domestic talents of Jessica Simpson, I hope and pray that I will turn into a Martha-Stewart type domestic goddess.

Ok, back to cookbooks. Cookbooks can get pretty expensive, but why spend all of that cash when there is a multitude of free,amazing recipes you can get online??

My favorite "online cookbook" is Hungry Girl. Hungry Girl is the anti-diet, diet website. The lovely ladies at Hungry Girl transform our fave, bad for us recipes (hot wings and nachos?) into delicious recipes that won't put us into early Mom jeans. Sign up for their daily emails and get the most delicious recipes sent to you Monday-Friday. The emails also contain product reviews and diet tips. I LoOoVe this site!

Another great online resource for recipes is Food Network's site. This site has an amazing array of recipes for every ingredient, occasion or time frame. Most of the recipes that you see on your fave food network shows (you know you watch it!) can be found on-line. There's no need to run out and buy Rachel's new book, when you can find a ton of her 30 minute meals online! This site also has a feature called "My Recipe Box" you can "store" your fave recipes and have them all available at the click of a mouse!

Finally, my third most visited recipe site is All Recipes . This site has recipes organized by type, ingredient, diet, budget, etc. It also has a recipe box feature which is fantastic. These recipes are submitted from people around the world. I never know where to start when I visit this site, so I signed up for the recipe of the day . Every day I have another delicious recipe waiting in my inbox.

Happy Cooking!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Home Gym-Part 1

I'm starting a new series on how to make yourself a home gym on the cheap. This won't require an expensive treadmill or elpitical machine.

There are so many gyms around me with memberships topping $40 a month! That's almost $500 a year on a gym membership alone! Add that on top of sneakers, bottled water and the correct sports bra and it costs a lot to stay in shape!

However, you don't need a gym to stay fit or in shape. One of my fave ways to excercise, outside of the gym is by doing a fitness DVD. They have gotten a lot better since the days of "Sweatin' to the Oldies."

The first, in a series of reviews, is Slim and Sleek Fast from Self Magazine.

The DVD description:
SELF, the premier magazine devoted to women’s health and well-being, delivers a workout designed to make you look and feel strong, confident and sexy. With these fun, easy-to-follow moves, you will trim and tone all over, and achieve the body you’ve always wanted in as little as four weeks, regardless of your current fitness level. This expertly designed routine will motivate you to reach all your fitness goals – fast! Best of all, SELF magazine’s Slim and Sleek Fast! workout will help you burn more calories with a combination of cardio and resistance training workout. Get ready to achieve your most slim and sleek body!

The only thing needed for this work out (besides the dvd, dvd player and a tv) is your fave excercise outfit and a pair of light dumbells (3-8 pounsd). This is more of a cardio work out, with a brief toning portion where the dumbells come into play.

The DVD is split into different segments. The first segment is a simple warm up, just to get your body ready for the work out. The next segment is a ballet inspired segment which I really like. This segment consisted of movements such as plies (sp?) and rear leg extensions. My heart rate began rising during this segment, as well as my lower body getting a decent work out as well.

The next two segments are more cardio inspired and feature high impact moves including jumps. One of the girls in the back does the low impact movement, but if you can help it, try to stay with the high impact movements. The high impact moves not only help in burning more calories, but in firming your leg muscles.

The next segment is the toning segment and consists of basic weight moves such as bicep curls and squats. As I hate toning, I didn't like this part of the dvd, but it helped round out the work out.

There is also a bonus segment called "Total Body Turnaround". This segment consists of a series of moves to help with toning. These movements would be a great addition to the end of any cardio work out.

Overall, I would give this DVD an A-. It's a great cardio work out for beginners, those who might not want to do high impact aerobics, and for those chilly winter months when it's too cold to go outside!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Sally's Haul

Sally Beauty Supply is one of my fave stores. It's so fun to browse around and they always have amazing sales. The sales are also better if you have a Sally's Beauty Club Card. The club card is $5 for a year, plus you get a $5 Sally gift card, so it's free! With the club card you get special membership pricing on all non-sale items. Most of the times it's only a few bucks, but if it's something you're going to buy anyway, and the card is basically free, it's a no-brainer!

On my last trip to Sally's I picked up a teasing comb for 49 cents, a package of hair clips for $2 and this eyebrow kit by Femme Couture. The kit comes with an eyebrow brush, two stencils and an eyebrow powder.

First of all, this is the first eyebrow kit I have purchased, so of course the review will be a bit biased.

The powder is a medium brown color. I have dark brown hair, but this color actually worked really well with my eyebrows as they are a bit lighter than my hair color. This is currently the only shade available, I don't know if there are plans to create more colors. The powder is more subtle than an eye brow pencil which I like. I wasn't really using the powder to help shape my brows, just to fill in some "bald" areas.

The brush it came with was TERRIBLE. The brush looked like a small blush brush that comes with Covergirl blushes. Unless you have huge eyebrows, it wasn't really helpful. I used this concealer brush from ELF. It worked great as the bristles were harder and compact. Rush on over there, because all of their brushes are 50% off, meaning 50 cents!!

I really liked the stencils it came with. It came with a natural arch (which I used) and a high arch. Sometimes stencils are hard to work with, especially when starting from scratch. I recommend getting a professional eyebrow shaping and then working with stencils to maintain the shape.

Overall, this is a pretty good product, and decently priced compared to other eye brow kits. I don't know if I would purchase again, I might want to try out the NYC Eyebrow compact that I see a lot of people using on blogs.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

..SnaCk TiMe

For some reason I am just BEYOND exhausted today. I have a meeting tonight, and then a seminar for my teaching certification. So it's a busy day! I wanted to make a very quick blog post though.

Tonight after my seminar I am having a quick bite to eat with my bff Anthony. Ant and I are both on a bit of budget and so we frequently visit our local Uno's. Sunday-Friday from 4:00-7:00 p.m. Uno's has "snack hour" in their bar section. All of their apps are from $1.99-$2.99. We go, grab a table and have our entire meal for under $20 (we obviously eat A LOT). It's not necessarily fine dining, but it meets that craving for delish apps and delish best friends.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Emmy Style on the Cheap

I don't know if any of you gals have ever read The Budget Babe, but she takes celeb looks and breaks them down itno affordable items. I decided to cop her style for the Emmys.

All in all I found the Emmy ceremony itself beyond boring. Sadly, some of the dresses were boring as well, but there were a certain few that I really liked. A.B.S. Schwartz always comes out with Emmy "inspired" designs, but I decided to find my own.

Warning: It's hard to find affordable exact dupes of these dresses, so they are just inspired styles!

Vanessa Williams appears to be completely ageless. In fact, I think she gets hotter with age. All though she caught some flack for this dress, I really liked it. The pattern was beautiful and the black and white kept it really simple.

This dress is from Gojane and costs $99.99 with optional spaghetti straps and a shawl. The pattern is obviously not the same, and this can actually be quite similar to Jennifer Love Hewitt's dress as well, but I didn't like hers as much as Vanessa's!

Emitations jewelry (a great resource for amazing cz jewelry) all ready put out replicas of the hottest Emmy jewels. Vanessa happened to be one of the celebs duped. I NEED this bracelet and earing set. The earings are $75 and the bracelet is $75, which may be a bit steep compared to your local Claires (which can also work for this look), but these have more staying power quality wise.

Another look that I liked, but maybe not for the Emmys, was Lauren Conrads dress. She designed it herself, and I do think it's really pretty, but let's be serious, we've seen it before. Any who, she looked beautiful, but I wish she glammed it up a bit more!

This LC inspired dress is a really pretty alternative. It's more of a satin finish than LC's jersey knit, so it makes a bit more proper for a formal event. The jeweled bust even replaces the need for a broch.

Emitations also loved LC's jewels and duped them exactly. How pretty!

I am SUCH a Law & Order:SVU freak. I watch it on USA like every night and TiVo the marathons. I've always thought Mariska Hargitay was beyond gorgeous. She looked especially radiant at the Emmy's in a beautiful canary number.

This yellow dress from Gojane ( only $76!!) alsoreminds me of the dress that Kate Hudson wore in "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days", but the main gorgeous factor of Mariska's dress was the pop of yellow. If you're interested in the draping, I reccomend a shawl or even a scarf.

Mariska's jewels from the pics I saw were of golden with darker stones. This bangle from Lulus is only $11 and poses a nice contrast to the dress. These earings from Overstockjeweler are Juicy inspired and a gorgeous dupe of Mariska's gold dreap earrings.

I've never watched Heroes, but I think Hayden Panettiere is ADORABLE. She looked so classicaly chic at the Emmys. It's so nice to see a hot, young girl not dress like a hot, young hooker!

This dress from Edress me is an EXACT replica of Hayden's dress, except it's a dark purple color. Hey, jewel tones are really in this season! At $190 it's a bit pricer than the others, but it's a gorgeous dress, that will be in for many seasons to come.

I decided to forgo the jewelry on this look, since I found this purse on Overstockjewelr. I know at $500 this is SUPER expensive,but OMG I want it! Also, compared to the thousands that a real Judith Lieber dress costs, it's a bargain!

...Until the next award show.


FTC Disclosure

All products are purchased by me unless noted otherwise. If a product is supplied for review, this does not affect my opinion. My opinions can not be bought.
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