Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Shannon’s Thanksgiving Eye Look of the Day (EOTD)

I was a total procrastinator on Thanksgiving.  My boyfriend and I had dinner with my mother earlier in the day and we were going to my boyfriend’s aunts for his side of the families Thanksgiving celebration.  I didn’t do my makeup until about 2 hours before we were supposed to leave (total procrastination moment!).  I wanted something subtle so I was going in a toss-up between a few of my palettes and decided to go with the Wet n Wild Comfort Zone palette.  I used the left hand side of the palette. I basically followed the “instructions” of the palette – lid color all over my lid, crease in my crease, brow bone on my brow bone and definer at the very corners blended out with the crease shade.  Super simple and fool proof!

The products I used to create this look:
* Wet n Wild Comfort Zone palette
* Urban Decay Primer Potion – Sin (I know not photographed I had put it down but couldn’t find it in my rush to take a photo)
* Urban Decay 24/7 Glide on Pencil in Zero
* L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes mascara (top & bottom lashes)

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Shannon’s Amazon Haul

This is a bit of a late haul – but better late than never.  I ended up purchasing this stuff simply because I wanted the Bye Bye Blemish.  I went to order it from Ulta but it was sold out online and since none of my local pharmacies carry the product – Amazon came to my rescue.  I knew I had wanted some Steripods since I had been placing them in my Amazon cart for months.  Unfortunately the item is only an “add on” item meaning it doesn’t qualify toward free shipping.  The same went with a few items I purchased so I kept having to expand my laundry list of purchases to get free shipping (which in turn only spends more money….)  Anyway, here’s what I picked up:

- Steripod Toothbrush Sanitizers (2-pack)
- Bye Bye Blemish for acne – Drying Lotion
- Oral B Glide – 3D White Floss Picks [I purchased because I cannot find the Oral B floss picks my dentist gives me and it’s driving me crazy lol]
- 4 ½ inch watch link remover [Purchased this because I hadn’t been able to wear my watch I purchased online because the links needed to be removed.  I got this on Amazon for $3.50 and it works perfectly. I’m clueless when it comes to watches, etc., and I was able to remove the links in my watch quite simply]

So there you have it, my Amazon haul!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Eve's Philosophy Giveaway

Eve, a fellow beauty blogger (both on Blogger and LUUUX) is hosting a giveaway.  Eve posts very informative posts and reviews on products she's tried and she's also very considerate to her followers providing giveaways to them monthly. This months giveaway is the Gingerbread Philosophy set.  If you're not a follower of Eve's I suggest you check her out, she's a really great asset to the Blogger community (as well as LUUUX!)

Note: Image is not mine it belongs to Eve.

REVIEW: Goody Spin Pins

I have seen the Goody Spin Pins at stores like Target and had never raised an eyebrow to them.  They always seemed like daunting little devices and I wasn’t positive that two little “cork screw” looking devices would work as a piece to hold my hair in – let alone get INTO my hair.  I never read the back of the box to see how they are used; I just assumed they’d be as torturous as bobby pins typically are in my hair.  Note: My hair is silky and thin-medium (depending on the day) so bobby pins and even hair ties tend to slide out of my hair, stab me in the skull, etc., etc.  With all that background “danger signs” when I received these in my Influenster Beauty Blogger Voxbox I was hesitant to use them.  In fact they are one of the last products for me to try out.  After using them – I really wonder what took me so long!

The product comes packaged in a pink and green box with a clear plastic casing to showcase the product inside.  The pins are tied down to the inner cardboard to keep it from moving around in the box.  The products range in price dependent upon where you purchase, but for the most part it’s between the $5.79-6.29.  The lower price being Walmart (Target is 10 cents more) and the higher price being a pharmacy (Walgreens).

The pins themselves are harder metal pieces.  The edges are rounded so you don’t have to worry about gouging your skull. The design is sleek enough to spin into your hair, sturdy enough to hold and maneuver and textured in a way that’s not slippery against your fingertips.  They’re pretty sturdy pieces as well – they don’t blend by holding, etc.  The pins come in two shades – a light and a dark.  The light obviously for lighter hair colors (blond and dirty blondes) and dark for brunettes or folks with black hair.

These are available for purchase at almost all major retailers that sell Goody hair products.  Target, Walmart, CVS, and Walgreens while they are also available on websites such as Amazon and drugstore.com.  As mentioned above pricing varies based on the retailer but for the most part they fall between the $5.79-6.29 ranges (the prices can be slightly higher if purchased online).

I would HIGHLY recommend these to anyone who is looking to simplify their hairdo.  This literally took me 10 seconds to do and it holds my hair pretty well.  I tend to touch my hair ALL DAY LONG (it’s a bad habit) especially since I have my hair in layers (which are growing out) I have different lengths to my hair, so the shorter lengths always tend to hang and/or do what they want.  The pins do a great job at keeping my hair back, in place and pretty cute and precise without the need or use of a hair tie, etc.  The pins spin in and out of the hair with ease, not pulling or tugging.  I was quite surprised at how easy they spun in and how pain free it was.


Monday, November 19, 2012

REVIEW: Goody Quikstyle - Absorbent Microfiber Paddle brush

 I went on a hunt for this hairbrush after seeing Krystal mention this in a post of hers.  I am letting my hair grow out (it’s currently past my shoulders) and I hardly ever blow-dry my hair.  I typically only let my hair air dry, which, especially when the weather changes and it starts to get cold out (or if it’s raining) my hair takes FOREVER to dry completely.  There have been days at work, where come 3pm my hair is still wet in places.  So when I saw this hairbrush I knew I had to find it, especially if it would help shorten the drying time of my hair.  The intriguing part of this whole thing is the product states it removes 30% of water in the hair.

The hairbrush comes as shown in the photograph – the bristles are covered with a hard plastic exterior.  Price wise – I will admit it is a bit expensive – at least where drugstore hair brushes are concerned.  Prices do vary store to store, but this retails for $11.99 at Target, $11.96 at Walmart, and at CVS it’s around $13.50.  CVS does tend to do Buy 1 Get one 50% off specials so if you were going to be getting two of these it might be a bit of a savings on your wallet.

The hairbrush is pretty sturdy on its own and when you look at it, considering it’s a paddle brush, you expect it to be heavy in your hands.  It’s really very light.  Actually so light it takes a few uses before you get used to how it feels in your hands (due to how light it is).  The first few times I used it, I almost sent it sailing across the room.  I would only use this when your hair is wet (after having been in a towel after the shower).  What I do is when I remove the towel from my hair, I brush the top portions of my hair, and then I brush the underside of my hair.  I find when I brush the underside it really aids in speeding up the drying process.  On a cold day, my hair can be dry by 10am (I shower at 7am during the week).

I use this brush everyday and haven’t had any problems with it.  It doesn’t get smelly and gross (as I admit I suspected might happen).  Once the hairbrush dries after use, you can easily pull the excess hair it captured in it out and discard.  Whereas after a number of uses you can wash the brush with some shampoo and let it air dry by setting the brush to dry, sitting on the bristles.

The brush is pretty much available all over the place now – but when I purchased this, I went scouring high and low.  I’ve since seen them at Walmart, Target, CVS and Walgreens.  This is also available on Drugstore.com.  It is listed on Amazon, but it’s nearly $25 so I wouldn’t recommend that.

I would highly recommend this hairbrush to anyone that has hair that they either air dry, or want to aid in quickening the drying time of their hair.  I’ve noticed a significant increase in the drying time of my hair.  This helps promote the healthiness of your hair since (if you can) it reduces the direct heat you would get from an air dryer.  Overall, I’m completely in love and I adore this thing!


Sunday, November 18, 2012

NYC Individual Eyes - Dark Shadows (Swatches & Mini-Review)

I received this NYC (New York Color) Individual Eyes in the shade Dark Shadows from Influenster in part of their Beauty Blogger Voxbox.

These complete palettes come with a cream primer and illuminator as well as four complimentary shadows.  To help the user create the “perfect” eye look there is a diagram on the back of the palette explaining where to put each shadow, while the plastic insert over the shadows advise as to where they go as well.  It’s a perfect all-in-one palette for a beginner or even someone who’s either on a budget or wants a palette that has everything together for easy travel.

This particular Dark Shadows palette has the following shades available: white, silver, gunmetal grey and black.  There’s also a cream illuminator (white) and a primer base (nude).  The shadows have a bit of glittery shimmer to them, but it’s no where near overwhelming or even moderately overwhelming.   I would say the color pay off is pretty stellar for a product that retails for $4.99.  I own the palette which is geared toward brown eyes (it has a cranberry/plum shade in it – gorgeous!) and I’ve used that many-a-time when I don’t want to have to go through what I have and want something that’s almost “fool proof”.

I would say the Dark Shadows palette isn’t for everyone.  Some just don’t look great with silvers, while others aren’t comfortable with such “bold” eye looks (particularly if you’re more of a neutral kinda gal).  Overall, I would say if you’re in the market for an all-in-one palette check out what NYC has to offer – they offer some pretty standup products for the price.

Shannon’s Random Target Haul

This is what happens when I head into Target to start Christmas shopping for my niece and nephew.  I inevitably end up in the beauty department buying a little something-something.  I bought some hand cream at Target which I keep at home, but when I saw the Nivea crème on sale I had to buy it.  The tiny little jar (the one above the travel size) was $6 at Walmart so this gigantic one was on sale at Target for $5.30 so of course I had to buy it.  I figured I’d add it to my lotion collection on my desk at work.  A few days before I had watched a “Get unready with me” video by nguerriero19 and she was talking about the Neutrogena toner and I’ve seen her talk about it a few times so I figured I’d give it a shot.  I’ve been using Lush’s tea tree toner and the Acne Free toner (different time of the day) and I’m finding with the AcneFree (my morning routine) it’s making my oilier than necessary so I wanted to try something else out that’s geared toward acne prone skin.

Here’s what I picked up:
-    Nivea Crème (13.5 oz glass container)
-    Tide to Go pen
-    Neutrogena – Oil Free Acne Stress Control – Triple-Action Toner

Saturday, November 17, 2012

BzzAgent : Received my Burts Bees Intense Hydration Kit

I admit this is a super late and belated post.  I received this box a few weeks ago and just haven’t gotten around to posting about my receiving it.  I received an e-mail from BzzAgent advising that I qualified to participate in this Burts Bees Intense Hydration BzzCampaign.  Quite excitedly I opted in because I have heard so many great things about the Burts Bees brand – and I haven’t tried any of their products outside of their chapstick.  Anyways!
The Burts Bees intense hydration line consists of a full line (day lotion, night cream, treatment mask, cream cleanser, and eye cream) designed to aid in trapping and retaining moisture in the skin.  The following is from the Burts Bees website about this particular line: “Clary Sage, a remarkable botanical that thrives in its harsh environment because of its ability to retain moisture, is the inspiration behind Burt’s Bees Intense Hydration, our natural ode to soft, supple, revitalized skin and our best natural anti-aging solution. Our cream cleanser leaves your skin incredibly soft while our day lotion, eye cream and night cream help reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles. Add the treatment mask for an immediate dose of hydration to give your skin a revitalized look.”

I was quite surprised to see three full-size products and a boatload of samples (night and day creams).  BzzAgent certainly hooked us folks up who were involved in this campaign.  Here’s what I received in my box:

-          Intense Hydration – Cream Cleanser
-          Intense Hydration – Treatment Mask
-          Intense Hydration – Night Cream
-          Intense Hydration – Day Lotion (samples)
-          Intense Hydration – Night Cream (samples)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

REVIEW: Not Your Mother's Smooth Moves

In my Influenster Beauty Blogger Voxbox I received a sample size of the Not Your Mother’s Smooth Moves frizz control hair cream.  I admit I was pretty pumped to get this in my box because I absolutely LOVE Not Your Mother’s hair products.  This goes without saying that I fell in love with this product.  It works quite well, smells amazing and is affordably priced (especially if you hit a pharmacy during a BOGO sale).

The full-size container contains 4 fl. oz. of product and comes in a squeeze tube (similar to the one pictured – just larger).  The product retails for $6.00 but this price will undoubtedly be lower at a Walmart location – I believe their Not Your Mother’s products retail for right under $5.  Pharmacies (CVS in particular) frequently put Not Your Mother’s products on sale – typically with a buy one get one free sale, so you’d be able to get two bottles for the price of one.

First of all, I will discuss the smell – this has a delicious coconut scent.  I am a complete coconut LOVER so the scent is completely up my alley.  Since you are using such a small amount of product in your hands, the coconut smell isn’t there all day – at least not to me.  Since my hair isn’t long enough to sniff on my own, I asked my boyfriend to smell my hair and he said it smells good but there’s no key scent to it.  So in my opinion the coconut smell dissipates.  The product itself is a cloudy clear liquid.  It’s middle of the road in thickness and when you rub it over your hands it’s got a little sticky texture to it on your skin. A little does go a long way, so a bottle should last you a while.

Smooth Moves is available at all major retailers – CVS, Walmart, Drugstore.com, Ulta, and Amazon.  Prices of course, vary by location.  I have not seen this brand at my local Walgreen’s OR Rite Aid – but perhaps those are just my local stores?

I would strongly recommend this product to any and all hair types.  My hair is straight (it can get wavy if I pull it back in a bun when wet and let it air dry in a bun – as seen in the picture) and I’m always dealing with flyaways.  This keeps my hair in control and completely smooth all day long.  I have healthy hair as it is (meaning I don’t dye it, don’t blow dry it, etc.) and the feel of my hair with this product in it, just makes it silky and gorgeous.  The scent, the price and the payoff are completely worth it in my opinion.


Saturday, November 10, 2012

This is what $25 worth of lotion looks like

Have you ever wondered what $25 worth of lotion would look like?  If so, look no further because this is it!  My boyfriend and I went into Walmart the other day for one thing and we ended up with a whole lot of random things.  I went crazy in the glove department (it's been sooooooo cold here lately and it snowed the other day!) and the lotion department.  My hands have been a bothersome topic for me for months.  I've tried a lot of things and things work for a while and then they lose their luster.  One of my coworkers was raving about Cetaphil so I decided to pick up a tub because at this point investing in one more type of lotion wasn't going to kill me.  I am pleased to report that this does work quite well and my hands are certainly looking better.  The Cetaphil was priced just below $11.

I was then looking at the Aquafor moisturizers and decided to get the Equate (Walmart brand) because it was almost $3-4 cheaper.  This is a petroleum jelly based ointment which can be used on all skin, lips, etc.  I figured this would also help me out in the winter months where my the back of my hands get terribly beat up with wind burn.  I have heard a little of this goes a long way so I'm sure this is going to last me FOREVER.  This was priced right below $10

The last thing I purchased was this Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula for Dry, Ashy skin.  The fall/winter months are brutal on my skin in general because the cold just literally sucks ALL the moisture out of me.  I have a slightly darker complexion and my skin can get grossly ashy even hours after applying lotion.  In case you don't know what ashy is -- it's when your skin gets so dry that it develops this white cast on your skin and if you scratch it (at least in my case) it gets VERY irritated and you could literally scratch & scratch & scratch until you start bleeding.  Palmer's makes pretty decent products so I figured I'd give it a shot and so far, so good.  My legs aren't crazy looking by mid-afternoon, so yay!  This was priced a few cents below $6.

So there you have it, my $25 lotion haul!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Review: Bath & Body Works - Mahogany Teakwood Candle

As part of the Influenster Beauty Blogger Voxbox, I received a mini Bath & Body Works candle in the scent Mahogany Teakwood.  I wasn't aware I was going to be getting this beforehand, nor was I aware of what scent I would be getting in my box as scents are put in at random.  To say I was very excited, is an understatement.  I can say this is one of the most raved about Bath & Body Works candle scents because many people say it smells like Abercrombie.  Honestly, I don't shop at Abercrombie and I can't think of the last time I walked past the store -- but I can say this: this candle smells AMAZING!

I love Bath & Body Works candles, some of their scents are amazing and this is one of them.  I loved it so much I actually went out and purchased the full-size candle, which is now safely stored away in my closet for future use.  The one thing I like about B&BW candles is they offer these mini size candles -- so you can test out a few of them to see if you can handle the scent.  These are great for smaller rooms -- bathrooms, foyers, etc.  I don't feel the mini's are strong enough to be the major scent in say a bedroom, etc.  If you had 2-3 of the minis in one room going at once, you'd be able to get an equal spread of the scent throughout the surface area.

Now as for the scent of this candle?  It smells manly - like cologne, but not over powering.  If this was a cologne, I'd probably buy it and spray it on my boyfriend ;).  According to Bath & Body Works the scent is described as follows: "Revel in the cozy fine woods fragrances of mahogany, cedarwood and oak, highlighted by delicate lavender and geranium notes."

The only tip I have is, if you're into candles -- make sure you trim the wicks.  The taller the wick, the more likely they are to smoke, soot the glass, etc.  Overall, I give these a thumbs up.

Disclaimer: I received this product free for reviewing purposes but that in no way alters my opinions or thoughts as these are my own.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Shannon's Amazing Clearance Haul!

I popped into one of the local grocery stores yesterday after running a few errands.  I needed to pick a couple things up and since I was right next door I popped on in instead of driving to the grocery store nearest my house.  In this particular grocery store I tend to check out their clearance section (in the back of the store near the dairy section) because they tend to clearance items just because there's only a few of the item remaining so they throw them on the clearance shelf to get rid of them.  I was looking through the cold medicine bin and tucked in the very corner of the bin were a few of these AcneFree 24 Hour Acne Clearing Systems marked down to $5!  I've seen a few people sharing hauls where they've purchased these systems and really like them -- so I figured why not?  I've been looking for acne cleanser that worked, so with fingers crossed, I tried it out tonight and hope to enjoy the results.  I also spotted a single eos lip balm in summer fruit!  The greatest part?  It was 90 CENTS! SCORE!  I have my eos lip balm on my computer at work, so I threw this one in my purse to have with me all the time.  I prefer medicated lip balms the most, but these are nice when I just feel my lips are slightly dry -- but with the one at work?  I've been slathering that bad boy on all day -- almost like it's part of my daily work routine haha.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Shannon's Combined Target & Walmart Haul

This is my combined Target and Walmart haul - which were done separately, at different times but instead of making separate posts, I'm just going to combine them into one.  I currently use the Elf eyebrow gel and have no problems with it (other than product getting stuck in the bottom of the container), but I've heard great things about the Maybelline Great Lash Clear so I decided it was time to give it a shot.  I had scoured Targets high and low for a few weeks and was never able to find the Clear variation -- so while at Walmart one day, getting some OTC medicines I spotted the mascara in the makeup aisle and snagged it.

The foundation is a whole new story.  I was watching YouTube videos and somehow landed on a video (by randomly clicking on the suggested videos) where the girl (apologies but I can't remember who) was talking about how she loves this L'Oreal True Match foundation and she first learned of it because of Kandee Johnson.  So I looked that Kandee Johnson video up (which she contours with a darker shade - which I won't do I rather bronzer) and started looking up different reviews on the product.  I decided it was going to be best for me since my skin is SO hard to match due to the undertones in my skin.  While at Walgreen's one day they had a whole display of every shade with a tester.  I tested a few and found N7 which matched the skin on the back of my hand and wrist absolutely perfectly!  I then went grab it off the shelf to buy it all excitedly .... and they were completely out!  Off to CVS - they carried 7 shades but none in the color combo I needed.  Went to Walmart - completely sold out of the shade I need.  [I now realize a lot of people that live around me are N7's!] Went to the Target closest to me, nope not even an option as they only carried 7 shades.  A few days later I went to the next Target up as I was running errands in the area and popped in and found THE LAST SHADE on the shelf!  I then noticed they had concealers so I grabbed the matching concealer - held on tightly because if I accidentally dropped them I'd be out of luck since these were the last shades in the store in my tone.  I purchased and my hunt was over!

Here's what I picked up:

- Maybelline Great Lash Mascara - Clear
- L'Oreal True Match Super-blendable Makeup - Classic Tan (N7)
- L'Oreal True Match Correcteur - Medium Deep (N 6-7-8)