Sunday, September 8, 2013

A Sort of Update

Some of you may know this, but many of you probably don't, but I lost my dad 2 1/2 years ago to a sudden massive heart attack. He was 59. I turned 30 in January and had an "Oh shit!" moment. I couldn't let this be the start of the last half of my life. I've always enjoyed hiking, and would do that at least once a week. I started trying to go hiking more last year and kinda failed at it, I was lazy and just didn't feel like putting a whole lot of effort into it.

Then I hit 30. I made a New Year's resolution to stop drinking soda (hahahaha), stop eating as much fast food, and start working out more. I did stop drinking soda (for two months) and have cut down on my fast food intake. The one I thought would be the hardest to keep is the one I've stuck with the most. I don't do a lot of upper body stuff, but I do run three times a week. When I say "I run three times a week," I don't mean two miles, I've managed to up my distance to at least 7 miles a run. It makes me really happy. Running has become my preferred stress relief.

May '12

May '13 after my first 5k

August '13 after Warrior Dash 
Me and my medal

Jumping the fire.

April '12 on the left and Sept. '13 on the right

Not only has running helped relieve stress, I've also lost almost 30 pounds! Weight loss isn't my goal, but it is a nice side effect of trying to be healthy. By this time next year, I'd like to be training for the Chicago Marathon. I'm not sure if I have what it takes to do it, but I'd sure like to give it a try.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Compare and Contrast Time!

Every once in a while, I'll buy an eyeshadow that is shockingly similar to one I already own. I've done one compare and contrast post already, you can find it here. Today, I'll be comparing three different purple/aqua/teal duochrome shadows. Who doesn't like a good color shifting shadow?

Let's get to it. Today's contenders are: Impluse Cosmetics Narcissa, Tick:Tock Cosmetics Once Upon a Time, and Virus Insanity Eyeshadows Lafayette. All of these are lovely in their own right, and all work well together in one look, but they are all very different.


Once Upon A Time

As you can see, in the pot they all look fairly similar. Once swatched the differences are more apparent.

L-R: Once Upon a Time, Lafayette, Narcissa



Once Upon A Time
Of the three, OUaT and Lafayette are my favorite. Narcissa applied very patchy, I'm not sure if that's due to not enough base ingredients or if it wasn't blended enough. OUaT and Lafayette both applied smoothly, with no "bald" patches. As you can see in the swatches, the base purple is the lightest in OUaT and a bit deeper in Lafayette, Narcissa has the deepest purple base shade. They are all nice colors, but I'm slightly disappointed with the patchy application of Narcissa. I was also a bit disappointed that once it was on my eyelid, none of the shift in Narcissa was visible.

Inner to outer: Once Upon a Time, Lafayette, and Narcissa
Which of the three is your favorite? Did you find this post helpful?

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Also...... This

Because it's magical.

My Newest Obsession

Occasionally, I like to write about things that aren't makeup. I've done posts on nature's beauty and inner beauty. This is more about finding your inner beauty and being comfortable in your own skin. It's something I know many girls and women (even men) struggle with. I've long looked at myself and been unhappy with my body, or my uneven skin, who hasn't? I've found something that has made me look at myself in a new light. I'm healthier than I've ever been, I'm losing weight, and it's a great stress release. I'm talking about running.

I started running in January as part of a New Year's Resolution, you know, one of those things we say we want to do, stick with it for a week or two, then give up because we've set an unrealistic goal for ourselves. My goal was to run a half marathon before the end of the year. Being as we're almost half way through the year, I've realize that I'm not ready for that distance yet (13.1 miles) That doesn't mean that I gave up on running. Except for the 2 months I was too sick to run (if I can't breathe sitting still, running is out of the question. lol) I've ran at least every other day since the first of the year.

I went from being unable to run a quarter of a mile to running almost five miles in an hour (with walk breaks and stops to stretch) Overall, I'm super proud of my progress and while I may not be running a half marathon this year (I'm still undecided) I WILL be running one next year and I'm seriously considering the Chicago Marathon next year. I've already run my first 5k and while I didn't do as well as I had hoped and thought that races may not be for me, I've recently become obsessed with signing up for any race I can scrape up the money for.

For me, running is a great stress release and way to unwind. What do you do to relax?

Scroll down for some before and after pictures. :)

Left- January '13 195lbs. Right- April '13 170lbs

Monday, May 13, 2013

Nail Wheel Swatch-fest!

I've lately become a little obsessed with nail polish. I want it all: creams, glitter, matte, texture, holo, frost, you name it. So, I went a little bonkers and filled a nail wheel with some of my current favorites and a few comparisons.
Geek Chic Cosmetics Malefic
Layla Holographic Mermaid Spell

China Glaze Sci-Fly By

 I really like the two holo nail shots. You can really see the difference between the two of them. The China Glaze has a much more subtle holo than the Layla, though both are nice and I'm glad to have them both in my collection, must own all the holo.

Sally Hansen Showtime

The Sally Hansen was a gem I found in my stash before I found/was able to buy any other holos. It's less linear and more of a scattered holo, but it does have a bit of linear holo to it. I love it, either way.

OPI Witch is Which

Another holo, this one not linear or scattered really. I love the little holo particles, larger hexes, and holo bar glitter.

Close up of the China Glaze Textures

My textured polishes. Two OPI, three China Glaze, and one Zoya

Another thing I'm digging is the textured polish craze. I did a blog post about it a few weeks ago, but decided to swatch all my textures. The blue and purple on the left are OPI shades from the Miriah Carey collection. The pink, green, and orange are from the new China Glaze Texture line, and the black on the right is a Zoya Pixie Dust, Dahlia to be exact.

A good side by side of some holos

Lastly, I have a side by side of my holos. As you can see, the China Glazes on the right are much less noticeable. These shots were taken in full sun with no top coat.

I hope you've enjoyed some of my current favorites. Any you wish you had? Any I need to keep my eye out for?

Monday, May 6, 2013

Star Sprinkles!

I wanted to do a little write up about a magical polish I bought about a month and a half ago. I love to buy indie whenever possible and this little gem comes from Geek Chic Cosmetics and it's called Star Sprinkles. Inspired by Rainbow Brite (one of my favorite cartoons from my childhood). Star Sprinkles is full of multi colored glitter, blue stars, and silver shimmer. Since it's a top coat and not one to be worn alone, I used Essie's First Timer as undies with an accent nail of Essie In the Cab-ana with a light coat of Layla's Mermaid Spell on top. Top coat is Seche Vite and base coat is Orly Ridgefiller.

Star Sprinkles bottle front

Star Sprinkles back of the bottle.

Essie First Timer
Essie At the Cab-ana
Layla Holographic Mermaid Spell

First Timer, In the Cab-ana, Star Sprinkles, and Mermaid Spell.

What do you all think of the new way I did the pictures? I think I like it and will be doing more like this. I got some plexiglass from work, so that helps. :)

All products featured were bought by me. All opinions are my own.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Texture Nails

I may be late to the game, but I've recently developed an obsession with texture nail polish. I've noticed that several major brands have jumped onto the texture band wagon, China Glaze being the latest. I nabbed three  of them from my local Sally's the other day, Bump & Grind (bright pink cream), In the Rough (light yellow leaning green cream), and Toe-Tally Textured (crisp orange cream)

Bump & Grind and In the Rough

Dry time on these was really good. They dried fast and while they were rough, they didn't catch on things. I wore this all day at work and only had one minor chip on the pinky nail, I work with my hands a lot and without a top coat, polish just doesn't last long for me at work.

As a bonus!! My first Zoya polish, Dahlia (a Pixie Dust) with OPI's Liquid Sand Can't Let Go

What are your thoughts on the textured nail trend? Any brands you prefer? Any you're wanting to try?

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Making Casual Photography Fun Again

I LOVE photography, but there are only so many things to photograph in my area before you get tired of taking pictures of the same thing over and over again. I busted out my dad's Olympus film camera and photographed the same things, but with a renewed challenge. Film doesn't allow you to keep taking pictures until you get it right, which I find surprisingly enjoyable. Here are a few of my favorite shots from my roll.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Favorite Lippies

This is going to be a short list of a few of my all time favorite lip colors. :)

MAC Heroine lipstick

MAC Heroine Lipglass

OCC Nylon

Geek Chic Cosmetics Chrysalis

Geek Chic Momo

UD Theodora pencil
There are more, but this will do for now. :)

Darling Girl "Ghost with the Most" collection

I took part in a secret santa type gift exchange and my secret bunny (because we did it at Easter time) was Susan, owner of Darling Girl Cosmetics. Along with lots of other goodies, she threw in samples of the Ghost with the Most collection, based off of my favorite childhood movie, Beetle Juice. The colors in the collection are great! There are some brights, which I love, but there are enough neutrals to make the less adventurous/office workers/whatever happy. I swatched them all, with a bonus swatch of Don't Teal Me You Love Me (DTMYLM from here on out) DTMYLM is a GORGEOUS black based teal with a strong purple shift in the right lighting. I had a hard time getting it to show up, but  oh well. On to the swatches!

Direct sunlight.

Indirect sunlight
Head Shrinker, Never Trust the Living, Delia's Song (direct sunlight)
Sandworm, Lost Soul's Room, Nice F*cking Model (direct sunlight)

Strange & Unusual, Jump in de Line, Prince Valium (direct sunlight)

Stupid Parlor Tricks, Inferno Room, Recently Deceased (direct sunlight)

It's Showtime, Bioexorcist, Miss Argentina, DTMYLM (direct sunlight)

Sandworm, Lost Soul's Room, Nice F*cking Model

Head Shrinker, Never Trust the Living, Delia's Song

Stupid Parlor Tricks, Inferno Room, and Recently Deceased

Strange & Unusual, Jump in de Line, Prince Valium 

It's Showtime, Bioexorcist, Miss Argentina, and DTMYLM
Upon looking at the DG page and my swatches, it looks like I have all of them but Married in Red. My faves from the collection are Miss Argentina, Nice F*cking Model, Stupid Parlor Tricks, and Strange and Unusual. Which ones do you like the most? Any you can't live without?

A quick look using Stupid Parlor Tricks, Nice F*cking Model, and Bioexorcist over Darling Girl Glitter Glue

Bonus looke from earlier in the week! I loved it so much, I did it twice. :)