Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Couponing Haul #1

   This weekend I hung out with my dad's neighbors who are AMAZING couponers.  They aren't those crazy couponers you see with stockpiles in their basement, but they stock up for their large family.  They swear by The Krazy Coupon Lady.  I follow her on Facebook, but never really looked into her blog before they mentioned it.  Basically, this blog is similar to Coupon Diva, which I follow.  She lists most of the common drug and grocery stores, what's on sale and matches it up with the coupons from the Sunday paper or printable coupons.

  Her information, along with my neighbors stories, encouraged me to give couponing another chance.  I had tried it a while back using Coupon Diva's website, but I find The Krazy Coupon Lady's blog a bit more informative and including a lot more deals.

  This week I stuck to CVS.  So here we go.

First transaction:

Starbucks Iced Coffee
On sale for $1.50
Use $1.00 off 1 Starbucks Iced Coffee Printable Coupon (no longer available)
Get back $1.50 Extra Bucks

Total out of pocket cost- $.50
Roll Over $1.50 Extra Bucks

During this transaction I also got a quarterly Extra Care Bucks of 50 cents and a CVS coupon of $5 off a purchase of $15

Second Transaction

2 Boxes of L'Oreal Healthy Look Creme Hair Color
On Sale from $11.49 to $5.99
Used two printable coupons for $2 off - here

1 Hydro Silk Razor
On Sale for $.949

Used my $2 EB, 2 $2.00 off hair dye coupons, and $5 off $15 CVS coupon

Total out of pocket cost: $11.65
Roll Over $4 Extra Bucks

Third Transaction

1 Gilette Venus Pro Skin Razor
Used $5 off coupon from newspaper several weeks ago

$5 off coupon and $4 EB

Total out of pocket cost: $4.74
Roll Over $2 EB

Retail value of total purchase: $52.06
I paid: $16.88
Plus $2 EB to use at another time

All in all, I think I got some really fantastic deals!!  I really wanted to use my $2 off 3 WnW products coupon in combination with the BOGO 1/2 off WnW Sale this week at CVS, but my CVS stores don't sell WnW products.

Do you gals coupon?  I want to start small, but eventually make my way to couponing at the grocery store, because let's face is my true necessity!

Monday, July 29, 2013

July Beauty Favorites

  July was a month that I actually shopped my stash and found quite a few products that I've had for a while made their way to my favorites.

*Revlon Beyond Natural Skin Matching Foundation in Light- I purchased this a while ago during a CVS beauty clearance event.  I barely used it, until this super hot summer.  I've been self tanning a lot and have been happy with my skin tone so I was ok with using a lighter coverage foundation.  It's one of those foundations that starts out white and then warms up to your skin and turns into your skin color.  It's a bit of a dewey finish so this wouldn't work for super oily people, but for me it works.

*It Cosmetics Brow Power- I've had this brow pencil in my collection for quite some time and just began using it again as I finished my Avon brow pencil.  This pencil looks super dark, but applies just perfectly to match my brows.  I also love that it includes a spoolie.

*Benefit Eye Bright- This Benefit duo I've had for so so long.  I haven't wanted to wear a lot of makeup with it being so hot, but I love using the Eye Bright under my brow bone and in the corner of my eyes to highlight.

*Wet and Wild Color Icon Ticket to Brazil Bronzer- This bronzer is super cheap and contains SPF which I love.  It does contain shimmer, which I know is not everyone's cup of tea, but for me I don't really mind it during these summer months.

*Boscia Self-Defense Vital Antioxidant Moisturizer SPF 30- I received this in my Sephora Sun Safety Kit and if I know I'm going to be in the sun I've been using it as my daily moisturizer.  It's a bit runnier than a moisturizer I'm used to, but it sinks into the skin quite quickly and provides a good amount of moisture for summer skin.

Have you rediscovered any oldie but goodie products from your collection lately?  I think I'm going to make a point to use some of my older or unloved products more frequently!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Hot Weather Skin Tips

   I don't know about where you live, but here in the Northeast the heat has been unbearable!  Hell, the heat has been absolutely dangerous.  For the first time in my life, I suffered from some kind of heat exhaustion or heat stroke.
   I was at the beach for no more than a hour and a half and I started feeling a bit woozy.  I started walking to the car and blacked out before we even made it back to our car.  Other than worrying about our skin or hair, the most important thing is our health.  Stay hydrated and if the heat and humidity is too high, stay inside with the air conditioning!

Not many people can rock the crisco look!

  If you do have to venture out in this disgusting heat, there are some skin tips to keep in mind.

*Switch to gel products- I normally have pretty dry skin, but even I grease up in this humidity.  If you get oily in the summer, switch to a gel cleanser and gel moisturizer.

*Keep your gel products in the fridge- This way when you apply your moisturizer it provides a cooling feeling.

*Don't even try to apply makeup if you're sweaty- If you wake up sweaty, sit in front of a fan or even stick your head in the freezer!  Do anything to stop your face from sweating, because the makeup will just slip right off.

*Use a mattifying spray or primer- It's summer and we all want dewy skin, but there's a fine line between dewy and greasy.  Use a mattifying product before you apply your foundation to keep the look glowy, not slippery.

*Switch to lightweight cosmetics- This heat is not the time for a full face.  Switch to a lighter foundation or tinted moisturizer and try to cut back on powder products.

*Tan face= less foundation- When my face has a tan, I feel much more comfortable going with a super light foundation.  I don't recommend sitting out in the sun, but try a facial self tanner and watch any imperfections become way less noticeable.

*Don't powder, blot!- Powder products have a tendency to cake up during the heat.  Instead of applying powder on top of an already greasy face, try out any of the amazing blotting papers out there.

*Don't use body sunscreen on the face- Most body sunscreens are much heavier and too oily to use on the face.  There are so many great face creams with SPF's already built in, that there's no need to use a body sunscreen anyway.

These are just some of the skin care tips I've been using during this current NYC heatwave.  What is your favorite hot weather skin care/make up tip?

Friday, July 19, 2013

My First Ipsy/Glam Bag

  It's been a while since I've used a beauty subscription service.  The Ipsy bag is a beauty box that I was a bit hesitant about using at first.  I remember when it first came out I didn't hear a lot of great reviews.  Lately however, the bags have seemed great and I put myself on the waiting list a month ago and the July bag was my first one.  It was a beach themed bag, and while I didn't love the bag itself, some of the products were hits for me.

*Sexy Hair Healthy Sexy Hair Soy Renewal Beach Spray- I've been looking for a good beach spray, and I've heard a lot of good things about this one.  Once the temperature dips down below 100 and I feel like removing my hair from a bun, I will definitely be testing this out!

*BH Cosmetics California Collection Sampler- I've never tried BH Cosmetics, but I have had some interest in trying out one of the California palettes- either the San Francisco, Hollywood or Malibu palette.  This little sampler contained a shadow from each palette- and the swatches were pretty crappy. Glad I saved myself the money of buying the full sized palettes.

*Coola SPF 20 Organic Rose Essence Tinted Sunscreen- Coola is a brand that I've heard a lot about due to it being a favorite of the Tone It Up girls.  I love the idea of an organic and mineral sunscreen and one that is tinted is even better.  Can't wait for a beach day to test this baby out.

*Nailitini Nail Laquer in Mai Tai- This is a full sized laquer and is a beautiful creamy coral color.  I've never tried out a polish from this brand before, so I'm excited to see how it applies and how long it lasts.

*Pop Beauty Flirty Fuchsia Pouty Pop Crayon- This is one of those giant pencil balms like from Tarte or Revlon.  This shade is a bit bright for my liking, but with a bit of a tan I think I'd be able to pull it off.

All in all I was happy, but not thrilled by my first Ipsy bag.  I do like how the bag contains a postcard with discount codes for all of the brands included in the various bags that month, but I wasn't blown away by the product selection or product sizes in this first bag.  Stay tuned for mini reviews on the products!

Did you receive anything different in your Ipsy bag this month?  I've seen a few different variations!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

What's Next?

  I love my blog.  I consider this my little girl.  I love writing, I love reading blogs, I love the entire beauty community.   However, I've felt like I've hit a wall with blog posts ideas lately.  I would love to get your guys input on this!

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!  I love blogging and I just want to make sure I'm writing something that my readers really are interested in.  Comment below with any further advice.  Thank you guys so much for standing by me and continuing to support me.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Glamour Do's and Don'ts

   I love Glamour magazine.  Glamour is probably the first "grown up" magazine I began reading when I was in middle or high school.  One of my favorite parts of Glamour has been the Do's and Don'ts page.  I've always wondered if the women who had the dreaded black bar over their eyes ever saw themselves in the magazine.  I would be mortified!
   When I was browsing my local library to beat the heat I came across a big from Glamour called, 'Glamour's Big Book of Do's and Don'ts."  It's a MUST read for any fashionista.

        The book was broken into sections according to work, special event, going out, weekend, etc.  For each area of dressing Glamour gave a list of rules to follow.  Here are some of my favorite according to section:


*Have at least three white t-shirts that fit and feel great.
Ladies, I need help with this one!  All of the white tees I own are too sheer and require an under layer.  I want to invest in some good quality non-sheer white tees.  Where should I start?

*Switch to a weekend-specific bag
This is a rule I just started following.  I either switch to a weekend specific bag with a lot less stuff, or if my bag is already weekend and work appropriate, I just empty out a lot of my Monday-Friday stuff for the weekend.


*Dress for the job you want, not the one you have
This is the number one rule for any job.  Pay attention to how the girl who has your dream job dresses and follow suit.  Of course, if you work at a job that is very casual you don't want to wear power suits every day, but don't dress as casual as you normally would.

*Don't feel that you need to show up in a different outfit every single day.
Get some basic dresses and outfits and change it up by adding a different pair of shoes or belt.  No need to reinvent the wheel.

Nights Out

*Don't show everything all at once.
This is one of those rules that I just want to scream at girls sometimes!  If you are showing off the girls, cover up the bottom half and if you are wearing something in a mini proportion, keep it more conservative on the top.

*Bring on the hairspray and accessories.
You're going out to hit the town!  It's the perfect time to make the hair a bit bigger and the accessories a bit bolder.

Special Events

*When in doubt, dress up
This is a rule my Grandma taught me when I was younger.  It's always better to be overdressed than underdressed.

*Think long-term with special event purchases.
Investing in the perfect little black dress, bejeweled clutch or special occasion shoes is the perfect investment in your social life.  It's so comforting to know that if a last minute event pops up, you have the perfect dress up pieces in your closet to wow everyone!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Top 10 Under $10

It's been a while since I've done my favorite drugstore products or my Top 10 Products Under $10.   I decided it was just about that time.  Here's my current favorite 10 products under $10.

Batiste Dry Shampoo (Wild)- I've only purchased this recently, but it's my absolute favorite dry shampoo.  The scent is warm and refreshing and absorbs oil and provides va-va-voom volume.  It's not that easy to find, but if you can find it I recommend you snatch it up.

Colgate Optic White Toothpaste- This toothpaste is the best!  It's very refreshing and is surprisingly whitening.  The box says that this toothpaste has the same whitening ingredient as the whitening strips, which work very well.  There are always sales and coupons on this toothpaste too!

Physicians Formula Conceal RX - So, funny story about this concealer.  When I first bought this, I was not a fan!  Then I began using it as I use my Hard Candy Glamoflauge concealer and I love it!  I recommend shaking this product before using it because it has a tendency to separate.  I apply a bit of this in the v shape under my eyes to brighten the area and conceal.  It works beautifully!  This product is also frequently on sale.

ELF Small Tapered Brush- This brush costs only $3 from the Studio Line.  I use this brush to apply my Ben Nye Banana Powder under my eyes and it works beautifully!  It's super soft and also super versatile.  I have been impressed with almost every ELF brush I've ever purchased.

ELF Shadow Quads- These little babies are so cheap and so pigmented.  There is a bit of fall out, so I recommend doing your eyes with these prior to putting on the rest of your face makeup, but they are so amazing in quality.  There are tons of color combinations and you can usually get an entire look out of one palette. 

REVLON Colorburst Lip Butter- This is one of those products that I didn't want to try at first because I didn't believe all of the hooplah surrounding them.  Once I tried one though, I ended up buying about 6 more and they are all awesome.  Super moisturizing, pigmented and shiny looking.  These lip butters have enabled me to rock both the nude lip and red lip trend without hesitation.

The All Natural FaceFace Food Face Wash in Strawberries and Cream- I got this after hearing Tammy rave about it and I'm so glad I tried it out!  I don't use this is as a face wash as intended, but instead as a mask.  Mix this with a little bit of water to make a paste and apply on the skin for about 15-20 minutes. The result will be brighter and smoother skin.  Plus, it smells delicious.

Wet N Wild Coloricon Blusher Pearlescent Pink- I love all of the Wet and Wild Coloricon Blushers, but my favorite is this shade in Pearlescent Pink.  It's super pigmented so you have to use a light hand, but it provides the most beautiful flush to the cheeks and a beautiful sheen as well.

Wet n Wild MegaLast Nail Color - The Wet and Wild Megalast Nail Color line is my favorite drugstore nail line.  The colors are always so opaque and I love the wide brush.  The color section is great and the lasting power is pretty decent.  

Prestige My Biggest Lash Effect Mascara - Here's another product I discovered due to Tammy.  She sent me a tube of this earlier this year and I've been hooked ever since! It's a great every day mascara that really lengthens lashes and makes them pop under glasses.  I need to start purchasing more Prestige products.

So there's my favorite beauty products under $10.  What are some of yours?  I'm always on the lookout for new drugstore gems!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Tip Thursday: Avoid Online Shopping Temptation

   I LOVE online shopping.  It's pretty much my favorite thing.  I highly prefer it over traditional shopping.  However, there are times when I just don't need to online shop.  For example, now!  I'm out of work for the summer and I don't need to be spending money on clothes, or cosmetics, or anything else from online stores.

   In order to avoid having excessive emails AND constant online shopping temptation, I created a separate email account to receive all of the emails from my favorite stores.This way I'm always in the know about the latest sales, but I'm not constantly bombarded with them.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Brand Review: The Honest Company

   A few months ago I ordered a product bundle from The Honest Company.  The Honest Company is an online shop started by Jessica Alba for natural & eco-friendly products.  You can order a free sampler of products and only pay the shipping if you would like to try out before purchasing full size products.

   When shopping at The Honest Company, you can do a monthly bundle of 5 products for $35.95 a month or purchase the products individually.  I did purchase one bundle of 5 products, but cancelled after due to the fact that it will take me such a long time to go through these products and I can always repurchase the items I love individually.

In my bundle I purchased:

*Honest Fruit & Veggie Wash
*Honest Sunscreen SPF 30
*Honest Body Oil
*Honest Conditioning Mist
*Honest Bug Spray (not pictured)

*Honest Fruit & Veggie Wash

Product Description from Website:

Easily wipe away pesticides, pathogens, wax, dirt, germs, & more with our 100% natural, non-toxic formula that leaves fruits & vegetables truly clean! Bon appetit!

I purchased this because I have been shopping at my local farmers market a lot and sometimes the products literally are just plucked and placed in the truck so I wanted something safe to clean the produce with.  I use this on almost all of my produce and I really like it.  It doesn't really have an odor and it leaves no taste.

Price: $6.95
Would I repurchase?:  Possibly, but I want to see if I can find a cheap DIY.

*Honest Sunscreen SPF 30

Product Description from Website:

Natural, unscented, broad-spectrum (UVA & UVB) 30 SPF mineral sunscreen - everything you need, nothing you don't

I have been in the market for a natural sunscreen so I definitely snatched this up.  This sunscreen offers amazing protection! I put this on while at an outdoor concert for hours (forgot to reapply!) and I didn't get burnt at all.  This is amazing for me, because I burn quite easily.  However, this sunscreen doesn't appear to sink into my skin.  My skin remains slick and sticky and when mixed in with sweat feels quite gross.

Price: $13.95
Would I repurchase?: No, I don't like the feeling of this product on my skin.

*Honest Body Oil

Product Description from Website:

A light, soothing blend that leaves skin silky and nourished. Made with organic oils and botanicals to feed & protect skin of all ages.

I have read about using body oils during the summer for a beautiful sheen on the skin.  I really like this oil, it absorbs quickly into the skin, moisturizes, leaves a beautiful sheen and doesn't really have a scent which I love.  However, I HATE the container!  It makes a mess.

Price:  $9.95
Would I repurchase?: Only if they change the packaging.

*Honest Conditioning Mist

Product Description from Website:

Organic, botanical conditioners strengthen, silken, and separate strands. Use anytime to calm cowlicks or kickstart curls. Knots & frizz be gone!

This is my absolute favorite product of the bunch.  It smells SO amazing and makes running a comb through my wet hair a breeze.  I really enjoy this product and it doesn't weigh my hair down or make it limp.  This wouldn't be the only product I put in my damp hair, but it's definitely my favorite.

Price: $5.95
Would I repurchase?: Absolutely!

*Honest Bug Spray

Product Description from Website:

Safely repel bothersome bugs without toxic chemicals or the stink of synthetic sprays. Formulated with pure, organic essentials oils to naturally keep bugs at bay.

After doing some reading on DEET (an ingredient in a lot of bug sprays), I wanted to find an alternative bug spray immediately.  When I saw this option in the bundle I snatched it up and I REALLY like it.  It has a citrus smell, which I kind of like, and I literally have not gotten a bite or sting since I began wearing this.

Price: $12.95
Would I repurchase?: Definitely!

As you can see, there were some hits and misses from The Honest Company.  Overall, I really like this company and even got Jessica Alba's book, The Honest Life, from the library to read.  If you are looking to incorporate more natural products into your daily life I think this company is a great place to start.

Have any of you ever tried any products from The Honest Company?

Friday, July 5, 2013

June Random Favorites

 I've decided to start another favorites series of my random favorites.  I obviously love beauty products, but a lot of the times the products that I reach for regularly are not just beauty related.  Here are some of the random products that I was reaching for all June.

*Silk Iced Latte- I've very recently become a coffee addict and lattes are just my absolute weakness.  However, neither my wallet nor my waistline can afford to consume them every morning.  I picked this up at the grocery store and it is absolute heaven!  It's very creamy and only 100 calories a serving.  I pour this over some ice and throw it into my Starbucks tumbler and it's like I went to the coffee shop.

*Slatkin & Co Summer Boardwalk Candle- I bought this candle during the Bath & Body Works Semi-Annual Sale and it is just LOVE!  It smells like sunscreen, and beach, and sea salt and sweetness all rolled into one.  A beautiful summer scent.

*Dryer Sheets- Huh?  I must be incredibly sweet blooded because mosquitoes just love to attack me.  Using dryer sheets has been my best defense against those little suckers.  I rub one all over my arms and legs and then pop another one into my pocket and I'm bug bite free.

*The Honest Company Fruit and Vegetable Wash- I've been purchasing a lot more produce at my local farmer's market and I love washing the fruits and veggies with this organic spray.  I don't think it's much more than water and vinegar, but just having it there next to the sink reminds me to properly cleanse all of my produce.

Favorite YouTuber

I've been loving the workouts from The Beach Body Mom.  They are low impact, yet effective workouts.  TMI, but I've been having a lot of breast pain lately associated with high impact workouts, and by mixing in these low impact workouts I've been feeling better.

What have been your favorite random products lately?  Any other iced coffee recommendations?

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy Independence Day!

     Independence Day has long been my favorite holiday.  I love burgers, love fireworks, sparklers and any holiday where themed outfits are deemed appropriate.  While my country frequently frustrates me, I am insanely thankful to live in America and incredibly thankful to our vets and current military members for defending our independence on a daily basis.

   Everyone enjoy today, be safe and thank a vet or a soldier!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

June Favorites: Beauty

   I know people always say, "Wow, I can't believe June is done", but to me June went soooo slowly!  My students had testing, my school doesn't have air conditioning, I had tons of things going on and it just crawled by.
   Anyway, now that June is done it's time to go over the beauty products that I've been reaching for the most this month.

*Wet n Wild Coloricon Bronzer Reserve Your Cabana- I love this bronzer, but there's no way I use it as a bronzer- I use it as a highlight.  This product is so cheap, it's massive so will last forever, and provides a beautiful highlight.  I love using a golden highlight during the summer to highlight a tan.

*St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse- This is the best self-tanner ever!  It provides a beautiful color, applies so easily and goes on bronze so you can see where it's being applied.

*Care & Style Wavy Hair Milk- I bought this at Mitsuwa and it's fantastic!  I apply this to my slightly damp hair and scrunch and it provides me with beautiful waves.  Only downside is, it doesn't contain anything to help with frizz.  So I have to find some kind of frizz serum to use in conjunction with this.

*Ben Nye Luxury Powders - Banana - I also bought this in Jersey, and it's just amazing.  It provides such a subtle brightening effect to under the eyes and I feel like it really helps my undereye concealer stay put.

*Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Glow Pad - This has been my favorite facial self tanner for a while, and it continues to be.  I'll be doing a review shortly!

*Real Techniques Expert Face Brush -This is my first and only Real Techniques brush as of now, but I definitely plan on purchasing more.  This brush buffs my foundation in so smoothly.  It also has minimal shedding.  An amazing buy!

Stila Kajal Eye Liner, Topaz - I didn't love this product when I first purchased it, but it has surely grown on me as I've gotten a bit more color on my face.  I use this on my waterline to brighten up my eyes and while it doesn't last long, the effect it gives is quite pretty.

*The All Nature Face Rose Petal and Elderflower Blossom Toner- This has been my daily toner for a few months now and I really love it.  I use this in the morning and it helps remove any oils and residue to provide a clean surface for makeup.  It's also very refreshing.

What have been your favorite beauty products lately?  

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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