Beauty budget 101: details and initial update

Hi my loves! Today’s blog is another life-ish post, but this time, we’ll be discussing my spending habits, instead of my blog goals. Much like any other beauty addict out there, I can easily and quickly spend all my money on makeup, but constantly going on a No Buy is no fun, so I decided to put myself on a Low Buy for the rest of 2016, and depending on how I do, continue it onto next year. I got the beauty budget idea from Rachael and adapted it to US dollars, so the credit goes to her for coming up with this plan!

My beauty budget plan works much like an allowance of sorts: every month, I get 30 dollars to spend (not counting gift cards, points cashed it, etc.). If I go over the 30 dollars, I subtract from the next month’s budget, but this is only for small amounts, so I don’t spend 90 dollars in one go and say I subtracted it from the next two months. If I have left over money, it rolls over to next month for some extra spending!

This way, I can plan out a very detailed budget for the rest of the year, and know exactly what I want to get my hands on this year (while still controlling my expenses). I started this in March, when I got back to the US, so let’s see how I’ve done so far.

  • March: Too Faced Sweet Peach palette ($49, with $25 Sephora gift card), Revlon nail polish ($5.99).
  • April: Nothing so far, though I’m planning on getting the MAC Oh Lady liquid lipstick ($20) and letting $10 roll over to next month’s budget.
  • May: MAC Tailored to Tease ($20) and ABH Carina ($20). Yes, two liquid lipsticks!

I do have the rest of my ideal purchases written down, but since nothing is set in stone, I’m going to leave them as a mystery until my next haul or beauty budget update!

Have you ever tried a beauty budget? Let me know in the comments and thanks for reading!



Blog goals for 2016

I know what you’re thinking: Blog goals? It’s almost May! But I’ve had this post stashed away in my notes for a while now and I wanted to get it written before 2016 actually ended! I also procrastinated on writing and taking photos for this week’s posts until an hour before my deadline so I figured a post I don’t need new photos for would be a good idea.

So without further ado, let’s get started, shall we? Here are my blog goals for the rest of 2016.

  • Write every week, twice a week, without missing a day: So far, so good! Ever since I got back from Chile, I’ve managed to have posts up twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This was one of the things I struggled with the most prior to my trip, and would sometimes have three posts in one week, then two weeks with no posts. I want to make sure to set time aside for blogging during the week, especially for when I find a full-time job and need to learn to manage juggling work and blogging!
  • Have at least two posts scheduled ahead of time or saved for a rainy day: I did have about ten posts scheduled, but my queue ran out and now I’m writing them the week they’re supposed to be posted, usually on Monday since it’s one of my set days off. I’m going to try and write an extra post every week so that I can have a few extra posts saved up for those days when I just can’t make myself write!
  • Write monthly favorites post every month: To be completely honest, I don’t remember the last time I wrote a monthly favorites post. I’m definitely going to try and bring this back, so bear with me as I work out what my post schedule is going to be!
  • Write Shop My Stash posts every other week: You may remember when I said I was going to do a series called Shop My Stash that would go up every Thursday. I’ve done quite a few of these, but I haven’t kept up with the regular schedule. I’m going to try and figure out what I can still write about that I haven’t already done a post on and try and space them out every two weeks! If there’s anything you’d like me to write about, let me know!
  • Read and comment on everything I can: I can say with certainty I’ve been doing this as much as I can, whenever I have the time to sit down and go on a reading spree! I’ve also been trying to branch out and comment on different bloggers’ posts, especially people who I’ve never talked to before! Otherwise, I’d only talk to the same handful of people over and over — not that I mind because I do love these ladies!

So that’s it for my blog goals for the rest of 2016. Do you have set blog goals? Any ideas for what I could add to my list? Thanks for reading!


First impressions: Too Faced Sweet Peach palette

Hi beauties! Today’s post is one I am so psyched about and I could hardly wait to write it! After weeks of suffering (okay, that might be a slight exaggeration), I finally got my hands on the Too Faced Sweet Peach palette. Everyone and their mother has been lusting after this palette, and between my love of the Chocolate Bar palette and the colors in this palette, I knew I had to have it!


So let’s get down to business! (To defeat the huns?)

First off, let’s talk about the packaging. The palette comes in a beautiful pinky coral gradient case (which actually reminds me of my banner/layout on here!) and a nice, wide mirror on the inside. The case itself is pretty sleek, hardy and looks very durable, and I know I don’t have to worry about this palette opening on its own if I travel with it! So far, so good.

The palette comes with 18 shadows in a range of neutral shades to some greens, purples and pinky orange colors. I knew I needed this palette when I saw the colors it has, because it’s very much within my comfort zone, but it does have enough different colors that I could excuse the purchase.

Of course, I know and love Too Faced eye shadows, so I knew I would love the quality of the shadows, but I still couldn’t resist the squeal of joy that came out of my mouth when I started swatching! Some of these colors are absolutely breathtaking and I can’t wait to wear them on my eye lid!!


From top to bottom, here’s the first row: White Peach, Luscious, Just Peachy, Bless Her Heart, Tempting and Charmed, I’m Sure. (How sassy is that last name?!)


From top to bottom, the second row: Nectar, Cobbler, Candied Peach, Bellini, Peach Pit, Delectable.


And lastly, from top to bottom, the third row: Peaches N’ Cream, Georgia, Caramelized, Puree, Summer Yum and Talk Derby to Me.

Overall, this palette has a great mix of mattes, shimmers and shades with micro-glitter, and honestly, these all remind me of my favorite southern TV show, Hart of Dixie! (Okay, that was set in Alabama and not Georgia, but still!)

So who caved and got the Sweet Peach palette? Do you wish you had? Let me know in the comments and thanks for reading!


Cloudy With a Chance of Charms: April 2016 Boxycharm

Hi loves! Today’s post is my first monthly Boxycharm post where it’s not going up against another beauty box, since I canceled both Birchbox and ipsy and only kept Boxycharm for the time being!


This month’s theme was “Cloudy With a Chance of Charms” because it’s April and you know, April showers bring May flowers! Unless you’re in Florida, where it starts raining in May and doesn’t stop till September. But anyway, I digress.


This month’s Boxycharm brought us five items, all of which are full-size. The first item I got is the pur~lisse Daily Lip Nourisher, which is probably what I was most excited about, after the OFRA lipstick! I tried it on right away (and went a little crazy so my lips were very shiny) but I really like it so far. Next, we have the aforementioned OFRA lipstick in the color Pasadena. I was super excited that we got another OFRA lipstick, and only a little bummed that mine came in the mini tube (even if it still has 8g of product). I already have this color, so I found someone to trade it with and will receive Honolulu soon — and don’t worry, the swatch below is from the one I own and not the one I traded.

Next, we have the blinc Black Lash Primer. I got their mascara a few boxes ago and tried it the one time and while I wasn’t a huge fan, I’m willing to give the mascara and this primer a go before I pass it on to my sister, the true mascara junkie in our family. And for the last two items, we have a yourMinerals Eye Glimmer in Brown Hypnotic and an Anderson Lilley Manhattan Beach Butter Hand Cream.


And here we have some swatches! The eye glimmer is on the left, and fairly pigmented considering it was applied dry, and the lipstick on the right.

So now tell me — do you have Boxycharm? Thanks for reading!


My makeup brush collection: a collab with Helpless Whilst Drying

Hi loves! Continuing on my collab extravaganza, today’s post is a collab with the beautiful Rachael over at Helpless Whilst Drying. Her blog is one of my favorites to read, so I was super excited when she agreed to doing this collab! We decided we wanted to talk about our brush collection, because as proper makeup junkies, we have tons and tons of brushes and it’s one of the things that you don’t see people talk about much, outside of their favorite brushes to use! Make sure you head over to Rachael’s blog to read all about her brush collection.


By now, my makeup brushes are something I’m really very proud of — I’ve amassed quite the collection over the last few years and I’ve invested in some great brushes that I absolutely love. While I still want to get some Sigma or Morphe brushes, I find that these are perfect for what I need right now.


First, we’ll start with my most used face brushes. From left to right, we have a BH Cosmetics fan brush, two powder brushes, a Real Techniques buffing brush, stippling brush and contour brush, a BH Cosmetics angled blush brush, a Luxie Beauty small contour brush, a BH Cosmetics complexion blending brush, and a Real Techniques pointed foundation brush and setting brush. I rarely ever use these for what they’re intended for, but isn’t that the whole point?


Then we have my most used eye brushes. From left to right, they are: a BH Cosmetics spooley brush and lip brush, a Luxie Beauty concealer brush, a Crown Brush crease/shadow brush, a BH Cosmetics fluffy angled shadow brush, a Crown Brush oval concealer brush, a BH Cosmetics classic shadow brush, a Bdellium Tools 776 brush, two Luxie Beauty tapered blending brushes, a BH Cosmetics blending brush, and an elf eyeshadow brush.


And then we have all the extra brushes that sit in my collection looking pretty, because I don’t use them for much if I’m being honest. I’m not going to go through all of these individually, but as you can see, I have a lot of BH Cosmetics (the pros of buying brush sets) and a surprising amount of foundation brushes, considering I don’t use foundation brushes like… at all.

So that’s my brush collection! I still want to try some new brands, especially Morphe (and especially some of their face brushes), but in the meantime, what I have works perfectly well and I don’t think I’m missing anything.

What brushes do you think my collection needs? Let me know in the comments, and don’t forget to head over to Rachael’s blog for her post!


Bits and bobs and hauls, pt. 2

Hi guys! I’m back today with the second part of last week’s haul. I did the lip products (and a bonus blush) last week, and today we have… pretty much everything else. As you can see, it’s a really random collection of products, but I can’t wait to share them with you!


First, I got the Nivea In-Shower Body Lotion after trying it in Chile at my aunt’s house. I used it once and immediately fell in love with how smooth and soft my skin left, and especially so with how long it lasted! I couldn’t resist picking this up when I got back to the US and I’m glad I did, because the results are AMAZING. For some reason, it doesn’t last as long on my legs as it does on my arms, nor do they feel as hydrated, but I may need to try using more and rubbing it on for longer.

Next, we have the TONYMOLY Shiny Foot Super Peeling Liquid. This is basically the cheaper equivalent of Baby Foot, and I really can’t wait to use it, because I love being barefoot and I think I barely wore shoes my entire time in Chile so my feet are really rough and could use some pampering.


While I was in Chile, I heard about the amazing Free 4 You sale going on at Zoya from Stash and I couldn’t resist checking it out and well, you can see I caved and got some new nail polishes!

I got the colors Aspen, Brittany, Rowan and Aubrey. I really wanted to try a matte shade and I’ve been dying to wear a stark white nail polish, so Aspen was an obvious choice, and both Brittany and Rowan are work appropriate polishes and they’re satin finishes, which I thought were super cool. Aubrey is a great berry color and totally up my alley, but it’s different enough from other berry colors that I could justify it.

The best part is that I only paid for the shipping cost for these, which was 15 dollars, when these polishes normally cost 10-12 dollars, so it was definitely an amazing deal I couldn’t turn down! I wore Brittany and Rowan already and I’m loving them, if I ever see another sale like this, I won’t hesitate to get more!


Last (but most definitely not least), I got the Lorac Skinny Palette in Marsala (and Navy, but I gave that one to Kira) when Lorac was on HauteLook, and I’m super glad I did because I’ve been wanting to try out more Lorac and this was only 15 dollars! The colors are all super wearable and beautiful nudes, right in my comfort zone, and I can’t wait to try them (especially that pinkish reddish color, so beautiful).

So that’s all for part two of my haul! Hope you guys enjoyed reading it, let me know what you think!


Shop My Stash: Gerard Cosmetics lipstick

Hi my loves! Today’s post is a return of the Shop My Stash series with a product I’ve been itching to write about — my collection of Gerard Cosmetics lipsticks! I had been wanting to get my hands on some of these for a while, and after seeing some really good sales, I finally bit the bullet and splurged on some earlier this year.

Without further ado, let’s get going.


Let’s start with the nude-ish colors I got. From left to right, we have: Buttercup, Nude, Berry Smoothie, Rodeo Drive, 1995 and French Toast. Once I swatched all of these, I realized the difference between Berry Smoothie and Rodeo Drive is pretty undetectable, so I gave Rodeo Drive to a friend who’s just as makeup obsessed as I am and kept Berry Smoothie to myself.


From top to bottom: Buttercup, Nude, Berry Smoothie, Rodeo Drive, 1995 and French Toast.

As you can probably tell, Rodeo Drive is a bit lighter than Berry Smoothie, but they look practically the same, so I figured it’d be silly to keep them both. When I was swatching these, I was super sad to discover that 1995 was broken — the lipstick had broken off the bottom and was just rolling around inside the tube. Fortunately, I emailed GC and they were super quick to reply and promise to send me another. You’ll be reading this in a few weeks so I may have received it already, but I just emailed them today so I haven’t gotten it back quite just yet!


Then we have all the colors that don’t exactly fit into the nude/brown category. From left to right, we have: Vintage Rose, Underground, Enchanté, Fire Engine, Merlot and Sangria.


And for our swatches! From top to bottom, we have Vintage Rose, Underground, Enchanté, Fire Engine, Merlot and Sangria.

I was very excited to see how I liked Underground because it looks quite different from anything else I have — I was expecting it to be a bit more grey, but it’s really just a very neutral nude and it looks great on! Another surprise was Sangria, which I was expecting to be much darker but it’s really a very vibrant and beautiful color.

So far, I absolutely love these and I loved them on when I swatched them on my lips, but I haven’t had a chance to do a wear test to really form an opinion yet. I know I have high expectations, though!

Let me know if a review is something you guys would be interested in and I’ll definitely write one up for you guys! Thanks for reading!