winter skin & keeping my glow

glowy skincare favorites: alllll about moisture, hydrating ingredients, and oilsbb glow1.jpgmy skincare routine typically stays the same step-wise, but i may switch out the products i’m using from time to time.¬† for me, it’s all about moisturizing layers sandwiched together, and this is true for my makeup too.¬† i always start with a hylaronic acid serum, and the one i’ve been loving for months is the jordan samuel hydrate serum.¬† he just released a 4 oz. size with about $50 in savings, so i’m going to pick that up soon as i’m starting to run out.¬† i let this soak in typically on damp skin, either from a witch hazel¬†toner or a hydrating rosewater spray.¬† next i’ve been using the s.w. basics original cream, which is an oil-based moisturizer that feels like a balm at first.¬† i rub this on the back of my hand to get the oils to melt, then apply to the face.¬† the less the better for this product – you will still get the insanely moisturizing benefits don’t worry.¬† after letting this sink in, but while there is still a tiny amount of product sitting on the skin, i layer on an oil.¬† lately i’ve been using the indie lee squalane, of course, and everyday oil, which is a mixture of lots of goodies.¬† this is of course my night time routine as it is quite heavy duty – in the morning i go straight in with my makeup routine because my skin is still so hydrated.

as far as glowy masks go, my two favorites are the frank body glow mask and the bioderma sensibio mask, which is a newer one to me.¬† you’ve heard me go on about the frank one, but it really makes your skin deliciously glowy in just a matter of minutes.¬† the bioderma one is my replacement for my glossier moon mask – after years of using that one i just wanted to try something different.¬† i do think i prefer the bioderma one.¬† for me, it feels like it really makes a difference for days, not just the hours after like the glossier one seems too.¬† both are great options, though.bb glow5.jpgglowy makeup favorites: lightweight layers & basesbb glow2.jpglike i said, i typically go straight into my makeup routine in the morning.¬† i’ll spray my face with a hydrating spray like the tatcha luminous dewy skin mist, which i sadly finished up after taking these pictures.¬† i’ll then apply my sunscreen and let that sink in for about 10 minutes if i have time.¬† this is a firm favorite for me, and i love that it hydrates the skin and protects me from the sun at the same time.¬† after that, i will apply embryolisse and first aid beauty hello fab coconut primer, sometimes mixed together and sometimes separately.¬† i’m more likely to use a base product now that i am at my palest and need a little boost.¬† these include glossier skin tint in light, vapour beauty atmosphere luminous foundation stick in 110 (the EXACT color of my skin which is incredible), and nars radiant tinted moisturizer in terre neuve are my go-to’s.¬† and yes, i did repurchase the nars.¬† after having an allergic reaction to my ilia tinted moisturizer, i decided to go back to this old favorite even though it doesn’t have a great rating on ewg.¬† i use so little that i can justify it!bb glow4.jpgglossier stretch concealer¬†in light is my go to concealer for under my nose, on my chin, and around my eyes.¬† it is so hydrating that it doesn’t make me look extra dry, which typically happens if i conceal these areas.¬† if i’m not feeling any other base, i will smush a little of this on any other areas of redness – it has a very similar effect to the vapour foundation stick.¬† blush is also a go-to in the winter, to amp up my already cold-flushed cheeks!¬† usually i go for a cream one like ilia in tenderly or pixi in baby petal, but i recently picked up this nars blush in bumpy ride¬†and love the effect.¬† it’s very pigmented so i apply the teeniest bit and it just livens up my entire face.¬† this has a very subtle sheen to it, as well.bb glow3.jpg

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winter skin & keeping my glow

mfam: the thanksgiving face

i haven’t been feeling 100% this week, so my thanksgiving look was about looking healthy and fresh faced.bb thanksgiving mfam.jpgi started with a healthy amount of both embryolisse and first aid beauty hello fab coconut primer to get the moisture and glow back into my skin.¬† while that was still soaking in i applied a little glossier stretch concealer under my eyes and around my nose, as well as on the cheeks where there was a touch of redness.¬† nars creamy concealer covered up the rest of my cute lil’ blemishes.

while all that was sinking in, i put a light layer of anastasia beverly hills eye shadow in fresh all over the lid for a bit of a base.¬† i smushed on this alima pure eye shadow in icon and blended it out just a tad.¬† it’s a beautiful, very sheer silvery taupe shade that gives the lids a slightly wet look with a little bit of oomph.¬† curled lashes and covergirl lashblast volume mascara finished off the eyes.

my favorite ilia cream blush in tenderly put some needed color back in my cheeks and a little coconut balm dotcom finished off the lips.¬† i put my hair back in a low bun, something that i’ve been doing recently that makes me feel beautiful if i’m real with you, and opted for a¬†madewell plaid blouse & black jeans for my outfit.

i hope everyone had a wonderful day, no matter where you were or what you were doing.  happy start to the holiday season!

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mfam: the thanksgiving face

the real deal skincare routine

and by real deal i mean this is my totally perfected skincare routine that i have been doing for months without the need or desire to change anything at all.¬† oh and FINALLY, the post i’ve been promising forever!¬† because i don’t have much counter space in my bathroom, i keep all my skincare under the sink in this cute container from target.bb skincare1.jpgbb skincare2.jpgthe routine //

i always start by removing whatever makeup is left on my face with garnier micellar water.¬† i’ve spoken about my love of bioderma¬†before, and this is truly the same product but cheaper and easy to find.¬† ¬†i then wash my face with the la roche posay tolerane hydrating gentle cleanser or earth tu face hydrate and repair balm.¬† following that i spray the avene eau thermale all over my face and wipe it off with a cotton pad.¬† i’ve been doing this technique since realizing my apartment water was making me break out and this has totally taken that away.¬† i should also mention that most nights, and every time i use a balm or oil cleanser, i remove my cleanser with a warm and super soft baby wash cloth.¬† this is a nice way to a) remove everything from your face, b) keep moisture in more than washing away with water, and c) give a gentle exfoliation to the face.¬† i think this has made a big difference in the overall texture of my skin, and it’s also just a really nice ritual.bb skincare3.jpgi have been using the thayer’s alcohol-free rose petal witch hazel¬†on and off since about june, but got really serious about using it once or twice a day for the past few months.¬† i either use a cotton pad or just my hands by pressing it into the skin.¬† my skin has been so balanced and fresh since using this regularly and i am absolutely seeing the difference!¬† at night i will apply my aczone acne cream next and let that sink in completely before doing anything else.¬† i also pop on a little mad hippie eye cream at this time.¬† if my skin is particularly active, i will apply a small amount of glossier super pure serum before my acne cream, just on the areas where i need it.bb skincare4.jpgbb skincare5.jpga few minutes later, i go in with a hydrating serum.¬† the jordan samuel hydrate serum¬†has completely replaced my usual hylamide low molecular ha and the difference is very clear.¬† the hydration just seems more long-lasting than with the hylamide – i really think my skin is now more hydrated all the time vs just when i apply my serum.¬† even with drastic weather change these days.¬† the ingredient list boasts more hydrating ingredients like aloe and glycerin, and only for a few more dollars than hylamide.¬† next i’ll spray a little herbivore rose hibiscus coconut water¬†onto a small dollop of first aid beauty ultra repair cream and mix that little concoction together.¬† this has been so helpful in getting my lotion to sink in and, again, is keeping my skin hydrated all the time.¬† after another few minutes, i’ll spray a little more rosewater into whatever oil i’m in the mood for that night.¬† the two i’m rotating between are the pai bioregenerate and indie lee squalane.¬† for spot treatments i use the indie lee blemish lotion and the most old school adult acnomel.bb skincare7.jpgbb skincare8.jpgin the morning, if i take a shower, i repeat this process without the acne cream or oil.¬† if i don’t shower, i¬† go straight into sunscreen because my skin is still plump and hydrated from the night before.¬† it¬† might seem weird but i definitely don’t feel the need to wash my face in the morning, even with water.¬† because my skin is so dry, i take all the moisture i can get!¬† as we get into winter i will start mixing in a drop or two of oil with my moisturizer.

the extras //

my favorite masks to use are typically on the hydrating or glow-inducing side, but i also spot treat with a clay mask.¬† my all-time favorite mask right now is the frank body glow mask.¬† it gives the skin a glow and light exfoliation, but also has intense hydrating properties.¬† other masks that give my skin that beautiful glow are the tata harper resurfacing mask and fresh vitamin nectar vibrancy-boosting mask.¬† i love both of these and just continue to get deluxe samples at sephora!bb skincare9.jpgclay masks that i love are the glossier mega greens galaxy mask and freeman’s feeling beautiful mint and lemon clay mask.¬† i’ve been using the glossier forever and probably won’t repurchase as the freeman’s does everything i need it to do.¬† it’s an excellent spot treatment as well; i rarely put this on my whole face.

i always follow a clay mask with a hydrating one, and the ones i keep going back to are the glossier moisturizing moon mask and dr. haushka hydrating mask¬†(linked is the new reformulation).¬† i found the dr. haushka one at tj maxx, and while it’s a great product, i won’t be repurchasing at the full price.¬† the glossier one is an old standby that i always have on hand.¬† besides the clay masks, i remove all of these with the same gentle baby wash cloth that i mentioned earlier.

i think the major notes to take away here, and the major differences, are the avene eau thermale, thayer’s witch hazel, jordan samuel hydrate, and spraying rosewater or any hydrosol into moisturizer and face oil.¬† this is actually one of the main purposes for hydrosols – to assist your skin in soaking up the most moisture from the products you put on it.¬† it also helps to thin out any creams or oils that might be harder for your skin to absorb.¬† neat trick!bb skincare6.jpgi know this seems like a lot of steps, but truly i can do this routine in under 10 minutes.¬† these products have made a major difference in my dry skin and i don’t see myself changing anything up for quite some time!

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the real deal skincare routine

september picks

bb sept picks1.jpgi’ve made some great strides in my skincare and makeup routines, thanks to a couple new products and some fresh application techniques.bb sept picks7.jpgas far as skincare goes, the avene thermal water has made a huge difference in the skin issues i was having due to my soft apartment water.¬† i spray this on my face after washing it or being in the shower, and wipe off the excess with a cotton pad.¬† it calms my skin and has been preventing the bumps i was experiencing all over my chin.

i’ve also added the jordan samuel hydrate serum and pai rosehip bioregenerate oil¬†to my skincare regime.¬† the jordan samuel replaced another empty hylamide low molecular ha, and while they are similar, the jordan samuel is far superior for less than $10 more.¬† i think it’s the inclusion of aloe that is making such a difference for me.¬† i’ve been using the pai regenerate oil at night in place of my favorite indie lee squalane because i needed a little more hydration with the changing of the seasons.¬† i’m still using the indie lee in the morning, of course!¬† for yet another hit of hydration, i’ve been using my staple¬†first aid beauty ultra repair cream before spritzing my pai oil with a bit of heritage¬†rosewater and glycerin spray.¬† this not only helps the skin drink up the oil it is mixed with more efficiently, but it adds moisture in and of itself.¬† i also spray a bit in with my lotion.¬† if you learn anything from this post: spray your waters/toners/hydrosols in with your oils and moisturizers.bb sept picks4.jpgbb sept picks6.jpgthe most epic skincare find for me this month was the frank body glow mask.¬† i saw it online at ulta and tried to resist but ended up ordering it a few days later.¬† it is somehow hydrating but rejuvenating and makes you glow immediately.¬† i keep mine in the fridge for added soothing properties and honestly it’s the best luxe experience ever.¬† plus it smells like cream cheese frosting.¬† frank body is the brand that does those coffee body scrubs, but their skincare range seems pretty epic as well, if this mask is anything to go by.¬† they are an all natural brand with a good price tag.

as far as makeup goes, i’ve been keeping it simple and glowy, as per usual.¬† i started teaching this month which is resulting in 5:00 am wake up calls, so makeup isn’t really something i want to think about.¬† for base, a mixture of glossier perfecting skin tint in light and ilia sheer vivid tinted moisturizer in t2¬†belle marre is all i need for a little bit of coverage and a lot of light.¬† i work this in all over the face with the bobbi brown full coverage face brush, which is very inappropriately named and also the first high end makeup brush i ever bought about 3 years ago.¬† popping a peachy pink blush on my cheeks gives me the life that i need at that time of the morning.¬† my favorites have been the rms lip2cheek in vogue rose, ilia multistick in tenderly (perfect for a sunkissed effect, i find this to be more peachy than it looks online), and clinique cheek pop in melon pop, which turned out to be the sheer peachy blush i’ve been searching for all summer.¬† for eyes i pop on a teeny bit of glossier coconut balm dotcom, curl my lashes, and wiggle mac extended play only at the roots for slight definition.¬† the same balm goes on my lips and i am out the door…with a gallon and a half of coffee mind you.bb sept picks2.jpgbb sept picks3.jpgas for my other picks of the month, i’ve been all about simplicity as of late.¬† i found the most perfect going out/packing light bag on sale at urban outfitters for $19 at the beginning of the month.¬† i can’t for the life of me understand why it was so cheap or on sale because it is gorgeous and looks very expensive.¬† love the pop of blue on the inside.¬† on the rest of my body i’ve been rocking my favorite simple gold chains.¬† that little bullet kinda thing and u-shape fit perfectly together, while the monogram chain sits lower on the chest.¬† separate or all together, these are forever faves.¬† i’ve had the monogram for years but the other two were late summer purchases from my favorite local boutique.¬† this beautiful pink candle was another random urban purchase; it is as delicious as it is aesthetically pleasing.¬† it’s slightly fruity and floral but grounded by rich wood scents – aka the perfect warm, but not overwhelming house scent.bb sept picks9.jpgbb sept picks8.jpgtell me, what were your picks for this month?¬† i always love to know.
bb sept picks5.jpg

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september picks

glossier: a realistic review

i think it’s safe to say i’m a glossier og. ¬†i purchased the phase 1 set only a few months after their launch, mostly after watching emily weiss’ video with leandra medine. ¬†i’ve loved the brand since then and some of their products i just don’t think i could do my makeup or skincare routines without. ¬†however with the introduction of “glossier reps” and the insane marketing all over instagram, which truthfully has more to do with said reps than the brand itself, i feel far less enamored with glossier than i used to be. ¬†it is my honest opinion that the brand is insanely hyped up and not all of the products live up to that hype. ¬†the reps that i see all over instagram can be extremely obnoxious, especially when you have the knowledge of the rewards they get for selling a certain amount of product, including trips to new york. ¬†just feels like we are being used, you know? ¬†it is important to remember that glossier is also incredibly expensive when you consider the amount of product you actually get, especially in their sunscreen and powder, so that is a huge turn off to me as well.glossier review1.jpgbut anyways, because of all these reasons, i think i am a fairly good person to give you a brand review. ¬†like i said, some glossier products i really do adore, and some have missed the mark. ¬†i relate very strongly to the “skincare first, makeup second” and overall undone aesthetic, but strongly dislike the marketing ploys.

please note, i am in no way trying to rag on glossier as i really do love the brand and the majority of their products, but as always i want to be completely honestly with you. ¬†if we can’t discuss our likes and dislikes on our own blogs, what can we discuss?!

the original phase 1 //

perfecting skin tint // my all time favorite glossier product. ¬†i couldn’t have created a better base product in my wildest dreams. ¬†it’s glowy, lightweight perfection. ¬†it evens out the skin the littlest bit and makes it look slightly more perfected, but not like you are wearing anything. ¬†i typically wear this on it’s own but love to mix it with other tinted moisturizers that have a little more coverage or don’t have as much hydration. ¬†i wear medium in the summer and light with a few drops of medium in the winter.

priming moisturizer // another staple in my makeup bag. ¬†this is pretty exclusively my summertime moisturizer as it’s the perfect weight while not skipping out on hydration. ¬†in the winter i layer this over my skincare and daily moisturizer, usually putting it on right before doing my makeup if i did my skincare earlier in the day. ¬†it’s extremely lightweight and runny, but moisturizes and hydrates beautifully. ¬†adds that coveted glossier glow.

rosewater spray // i feel like this is the one glossier product that never gets mentioned anywhere.  this is a pretty basic rosewater but sadly burned my eyes.  if i was extra careful and left my eyes closed for enough time after spraying i was fine, so i finished the bottle, but not a repurchase in my opinion.

balm dotcom // i only had the original balm dotcom this one time, but it’s a pretty basic vaseline-type skin salve. ¬†nothing remarkable but somehow a necessity at the same time. ¬†i’ll mention the flavors a bit later. ¬†great size for throwing in your purse or backpack.glossier review2.jpgphase 2 //

boy brow // my shade is brown. ¬†it took me a really long time to admit to liking this product. ¬†and it only works for me if i wipe most of it off on a paper towel first. ¬†this is really a pomade type product, so it is thick and heavy. ¬†if i don’t take most of the product off, i hate how clumpy and thick feeling it is on my eyebrows. ¬†however, when lightly applied, it offers a great amount of tint and volume, as well as hold, to the brows.

stretch concealer // i originally bought this in shade medium but found it to be incredibly orange on me, even if the shade was correct for my summer skin. ¬†i gave that shade to my sister and i just bought light, so now that i am more pale this works better. ¬†i would much rather use the rms concealer to the glossier, but those shades are far too yellow for me and this has the right amount of pink. ¬†i don’t really conceal under my eyes, but i like this because it offers a little brightness without really hiding any darkness (i think that looks cool, ok?!). ¬†also nice around the face on any redness but definitely won’t conceal blemishes. ¬†i think this is a must have product for people that use concealers like this more than i do, but i am getting a lot of use out of it and i do like.

generation g // the second generation (he he) of these is far better than the first. ¬†the first ones were not as pigmented and a lot more drying. ¬†of the new generation i have zip, a beautiful poppy red, and cake, a peachy nude. ¬†i truly love both of these shades and wear them quite frequently. ¬†perfect for someone who loves a more blotted effect on the lips without the faff. ¬†i have had other shades in the past, but these are my favorite. ¬†i did a little comparison of the gen g’s with the colourpop blotted lips here. ¬†i didn’t own these two particular shades when i did that review, so they have slightly changed my opinion. ¬†i prefer the colourpop iteration but wish they had more wearable shades. ¬†glossier review4.jpgothers //

haloscope // my sister got me the shade quartz for my birthday. ¬†this is very comparable to my favorite rms living luminizer but with more oomph. ¬†i love the glossiness that this gives and the shade is perfect on my fair skin. ¬†i don’t apply it directly to my face as it does tug from the applicator, so i usually get a more subtle look. ¬†i’m not sure if i will repurchase this as the living luminizer is mostly what i reach for, but i really do like having it and am happy to have tried it out.

priming moisturizer rich // another birthday present from my sissy! ¬†isn’t she the best? ¬†honestly i liked this more as a hand cream than a face cream. ¬†the lavender scent was extremely overpowering and it felt very silicone-y on my skin. ¬†even as a dry skinned person i find the regular priming moisturizer to be a far superior product.

milky jelly cleanser // this is a great product and one that i went through about 3 containers of. ¬†however, even as a minimal makeup wearer, this is not an effective makeup remover. ¬†that isn’t the biggest deal as i usually remove my makeup with a micellar water before washing my face anyways, but i do think it should be mentioned. ¬†i have been drawn to more true cream cleanser lately, but i do think i will repurchase this again in the future. ¬†it’s a pretty basic cleanser that doesn’t dry out the skin, so that’s a pretty big plus in my book.

moisturizing moon mask // this is another one of my “holy grail” glossier products. ¬†it is so soothing on the skin and always feels cooling. ¬†it is a pain to get off, but so worth it. ¬†i apply this after any other mask that i use, as i always want to follow up with something hydrating after using something more drying or detoxifying. ¬†also makes a fab hand mask. ¬†glossier really nailed it here.

galaxy greens mask // this is a clay mask that i really do enjoy. ¬†it’s not the best detoxifying mask i’ve ever used, but it’s a solid product. ¬†this can be pretty intense so be careful and patch test first. ¬†i use this only where i need it and never for the entire length of time recommended. ¬†i’ve had my tub forever but probably won’t repurchase when i finally get through it.

flavored balm dotcoms // coconut is my everything! ¬†originally the scent was quite nauseating but now i can’t get enough. ¬†i like to put it on my lips, eyelids, and nostrils pretty much every night. ¬†i also have the mint which is super refreshing and not fake smelling at all. ¬†this is nice under the nose as well because you get the fresh scent and the tingle of the menthol. ¬†great for when you have a cold!

the supers // i bought all 3 super serums when they first launched and they were definitely my introduction into serums and skincare layering. ¬†i quickly realized, however, that they really weren’t doing much of anything. ¬†the only one that i continue to use and have repurchased is super pure. ¬†i apply that mostly to my chin where i have some hormonal breakouts and it really does help the redness and length of the activeness. ¬†i saw absolutely no changes or benefits from neither super bounce nor super glow. ¬†one thing to note: a product like super glow should be in a dark bottle with some sort of airtight pump because of the activeness of the ingredients, so the ingredients lose their potency far faster than you could ever use this all up. ¬†if you are interested in purchasing one of the serums, i recommend the pure.glossier review3.jpgwhat are you glossier favorites?

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glossier: a realistic review

july picks

blogs & youtube //

alice catherine // i’ve been following alice on instagram for a while and randomly decided to check out her blog. ¬†you know when you know someone has a blog but never seem to look at it?! ¬†anyways, i love her style and aesthetic. ¬†plus it’s always refreshing to find a new style blogger that is down to earth and approachable fashion-wise!¬†

stylonylon // i’ve been following and reading stylonylon for months but keep forgetting to mention her here. ¬†her blog is beachy but sophisticated, french but british, stylish but serene. ¬†in a few words: i love her. ¬†her sunday edit posts are my absolute favorite and i haven’t missed one in months.

harry makes it up // harry is an incredible makeup artist that also has an addicting youtube channel.  i watched her back in the day but recently fell back in love.  her approach to makeup is very simple and fresh, right up my alley.  some of her recent videos that i have loved are her priscilla presley tutorial and everyday makeup routine.

sharon farrell // another makeup artist and youtuber!  i found sharon through karima mckimmie and she is such a gem.  she is an irish woman living in australia which makes for the perfect combination.  her videos range from reviews to vlogs to tutorials that are more interesting than my usual youtube choices.  both sharon and harry exude knowledge and experience which i personally enjoy very much.bb july picks2.jpgproducts //

essence make me brow in browny brows // glossier boy brow has nothing on this. ¬†$3 for the perfect brow gel – it’s plumping, perfectly ashy toned, and long wearing. ¬†i have to wipe a bit off the applicator before applying but this is truly a diamond in the rough.

glossier super pure // i have previously mentioned my disappointment in the glossier serum range so i really didn’t think i would ever reach for them again. ¬†for whatever reason, i decided to try super pure again while i’ve been struggling with some hormonal and stress induced chin acne. ¬†somehow this is now working for me! ¬†it’s not a miracle product, but i feel that it takes away a lot of the redness and irritation from my breakouts and seems to take away a few days from the timeline.

bite beauty gloss in rambutan // i wanted to pick up one of the bite beauty glosses from sephora for a while but never ended up doing so, only to find out they had discontinued the line.  why does bite do that, by the way?  anyways i placed a sephora order a few months ago for some staples and saw that these were available again!  i picked up the nude shade and it is seriously the perfect gloss.  i go in and out with lip gloss, but sometimes i just want that fresh look that only a gloss can achieve.  they are glossy but not sticky and surprisingly hydrating.  this shade is pigmented but not too pigmented, so my lips show a little of the color but are not concealer-like.  if you have been interested in these, go grab one before they disappear again! 

coverfx custom enhancer drops in sunkissed // i feel like i’ve mentioned these every where but i don’t know if i actually have. ¬†the most perfect bronzer drops ever. ¬†seriously, the shade is the perfect red-based neutral bronze, they are completely matte, and they apply perfectly both straight on the skin and mixed with foundation or tinted moisturizer. ¬†they are pricey, but just a dot will do you and the quality is remarkable. ¬†i have a more in depth post coming!

ilia sheer vivid tinted moisturizer in t2 belle marre // this has been my go to summer base when i need a little coverage and a little glow. ¬†i find it to be a mix between the nars pure radiant tinted moisturizer and glossier perfecting skin tint. ¬†while i love love the nars tinted moisturizer the ingredients are just too bad for me to justify, and i recently ran out of my glossier tint. ¬†the ilia tinted moisturizer is a truly beautiful, lightweight, glowing formula that adds the perfectly amount of luminosity and coverage to the skin. ¬†the shade t2 is great for me for summer and i have even mixed in a drop of the coverfx drops if i’ve been in the sun for a while. ¬†added bonus of physical spf 20. ¬†i will probably get the t1 shade when winter comes around!

rms nail polish in beloved // ok now this i know i’ve mentioned a million and one times. like here¬†and¬†here.¬†truly the perfect summer red with a hint of orange but not too much.

tata harper resurfacing mask sample // i’ve had this sample forever but fell in love and finished it up over the month of july. ¬†again, my skin has been less than fab so this is both helping my breakouts and adding a glow to the rest of my face. ¬†i don’t know if i can justify the full size, but i really do love this mask. ¬†using it once a week for the month of july i have absolutely seen a difference in the glow and texture of my skin.

diptyque candle in santal // my beautiful christmas present from my beautiful sister! ¬†i’ve been loving this all year long, but especially for adding a sultry scent to my little apartment. ¬†i will be very VERY sad when this is gone…especially because it doesn’t even need to be lit to exude the perfect sandalwood scent. ¬†but you know i’m excited to reuse the container ūüėČ
bb july picks1.jpgmusic //

jim croce, walking back to georgia

carole king tapestry album

acoustic summer spotify album

backyard bbq spotify album

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july picks

available skincare

while i used to love ordering skincare online or going to be more niche stores (sephora, beautylish, etc.), i am feeling quite over that at the moment*. ¬†maybe because i’m back to being a broke student and maybe because i’m no longer living in an area where i have access to those stores. ¬†for something like skincare that you go through so quickly, it doesn’t feel efficient to keep ordering online. ¬†whatever the reason, i’m seeing some definite changes in my skincare routine specifically, and i have to say, i’m not mad about it. *with a couple exceptions of course!bb available skincare1.jpgmicellar water: i have gone through 2 big bottles of bioderma as a first cleanse/makeup remover over the past 6 months. ¬†while i love the formula and honestly just the luxury of that product, i no longer want to have to order my makeup remover every time i need to restock. ¬†i got a travel size of the garnier micellar water to compare and honestly i don’t see one bit of difference. ¬†i just purchased the full size which is huge and will last probably the whole summer or more. ¬†garnier micellar water is available at target and other drugstores.

face wash: i just finished both my glossier milky jelly cleanser and the first aid beauty cream cleanser, definitely prefer the latter over the former. ¬†this is my third bottle of mjc but i’m just meh about it. ¬†it’s hard to get and quite expensive and just not as remarkable as it should be. ¬†the fab is a true cream consistency but fully removable with water and gets all of my makeup off, while the mjc doesn’t come close. ¬†i was going to repurchase my old standby cetaphil when i saw the la roche posay tolerane hydrating gentle cleanser at my target and saw extremely solid reviews online. ¬†this is creamy like the fab – really it feels like lotion – but is gentle on the skin and eyes and very hydrating. ¬†i don’t feel that tight-face feeling after using this which i pretty much always get because of my dry skin. ¬†i think this has been helping to clear up my skin along with some other products i’ll mention later (it contains niacinamide like the glossier super pure), so i’m quite impressed thus far. ¬†this was a few dollars more than other drugstore cleansers ($15) but contains 13.5 ounces of product. ¬†it might be harder to find if you don’t have a target or walgreen’s near you, but worth a try if you can find it. ¬†plus it’s a really big size so cost efficient. ¬†they also have a purifying version if you have normal to oily skin!

toner: toner is a new step for me. ¬†usually i will use a facial spray here, but i decided to try out the thayer’s alcohol-free rose witch hazel when i saw a travel size version at target. ¬†witch hazel’s are reportedly great for the skin (the alcohol-free kind!) and help to balance and tone the skin. ¬†my skin feels healthier and more balanced after i use it, so i’m trying to be good about it morning and night. ¬†i’m liking it so far and will pick up the full size. ¬†available at target, drugstores, and health food stores.bb available skincare3.jpgserum: deciem hylamide low molecular ha. ¬†back to a tried and true favorite. ¬†i mentioned here that i finished up my previous ha from purchased from beauty heroes and went back to hylamide when i was done. ¬†it was a great decision and i don’t think i’ll be straying for quite a while. ¬†available at cvs. ¬†the other serum i’ve been using over the past month that is a bit of a cheat is the glossier super pure serum. ¬†when i first got the serums, i was very disappointed. ¬†i didn’t see any results and they felt too watery to be doing anything. ¬†but i’ve recently gone back to the super pure and i can honestly say this is helping the stress acne i’ve been experiencing over the whole month of june. ¬†it’s becoming my secret weapon – i apply it only on the acne on my chin before applying any other skincare.

oil: indie lee squalane. ¬†now this one is a little bit special because it isn’t that readily available. ¬†however, it is carried in some anthropologies and natural beauty stores, so i bet you can find this somewhere near you depending on where you live. ¬†i found a natural beauty store about an hour away from me, so while i won’t be going there often, i will definitely return on my next shopping trip. ¬†i am finishing up my first bottle of this and now have a backup which i am very happy about.

moisturizer:¬†good ol’ cetaphil. ¬†i like this thick version because it is so moisturizing and pulls all of my other products into my skin. ¬†in the summer i use just a little bit, whereas in the winter i pile it on. ¬†i do like their lotion version (versus the cream), but this works better for me. ¬†the less readily available favorites are glossier priming moisturizer and first aid beauty ultra repair cream. ¬†the glossier has been my daytime summer moisturizer of choice this year, it’s light and sinks in almost immediately but keeps my hydrated and glowing all day long. ¬†the first aid beauty is more of my winter lotion, but i have 2 backups that i’ve been making my way through. ¬†i interchange it with the cetaphil – they are pretty much the same but the fab is a little more moussey and lighter, but with the same hydrating results. ¬†because of the texture it is also easier to use a little bit and spread it over my whole face, so i can use this during the summer without looking or feeling too greasy.

mask:¬†i’m very picky when it comes to detox masks. ¬†because i’m dry but acne-prone, i never want anything too harsh, but effective enough to make a difference. ¬†my go to for years as been the feeling beautiful lemon and mint mask, but i no longer live near ulta and can’t seem to find that one anymore. ¬†i tried the yes to tomatoes clear skin detoxifying charcoal mud mask and i LOVE it! ¬†it’s very similar to the origins charcoal mask which i love but recently used up. ¬†this is a salicylic mud mask that tightens and clears the skin, but doesn’t feel as tight as the origins. ¬†i see better results with this mask than any of the high end clarifying masks i’ve used!¬†bb available skincare2.jpgwhile i don’t always love my insatiable need for new things, i think that it is slowly showing me what products i actually like and want to keep buying. ¬†lucky for me, in the case of skincare at least, my picks are relatively affordable and easy to find. ¬†though i do get sad about all the money i have spent on selfcare in the past, i like this new direction i am going and i think it will continue for a long time to come.

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available skincare