Saturday, November 29, 2014

Beauty Bank Inventory - Makeup, Nails, Fragrance [2014]

The main portion of my beauty bank.

When I started to share pictures of my makeup looks, a friend had commented that I must have a lot of makeup. I probably have more than a person needs, but I enjoy being able to get creative and choose from a variety of products on any given day.

The beauty collection that I admire - and it really is a “collection” - is that of Tarababyz (see her collection here). I could have a lot of fun creating different looks with it, or simply admiring the many details of the items. I would not take nearly as good a care of the things as Tara does, so I shall just live vicariously through her videos!

For an idea of the amount that I have, and as a way to help me keep control of the size of my Beauty Bank, I thought I’d share the numbers for makeup, nail, and fragrance items.

I’ve included the numbers of what I would say is currently my ideal amount along with the actual amounts. I tried to keep the categories as simple as possible, meaning that sample/ trial sizes were included but not distinguished and that some of the categories were quite broad. “Lip color” includes all lipsticks, stains, glosses, and the like.

Category (Ideal) - Actual

Lip color (30) - 43
Lip balm (3) - 5
Lip liner (3) - 2

Foundation (3) - 7
Powder (3) - 3
Concealer (3) - 3
Face primer (1) - 1
Blush (5) - 5
Highlighter (1) - 1
Bronzer (1) - 2
Face palette (2) - 2

Eyeshadow single (27) - 44
Eyeshadow multiple (7) - 10
Eyeshadow palette (3) - 2
Eye liner (9) - 13
Eye primer (1) - 1
Mascara (2) - 4
Brow product (1) - 2

Nail color (21) - 27
Nail coat (3) - 3

Fragrance (11) - 24

I think this is a decently-sized beauty bank matching my mild interest in beauty products. Except for a few categories I’d like to either trim or add to, I am satisfied with the amount that I have overall.

Lip and eye products, from left, clockwise: Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm Unapologetic, Rimmel by Kate Moss #05Maybelline Color Whisper Pin Up Peach, Urban Decay Revolution FiendMAC Charmed, I’m Sure, Wet-n-Wild Silent TreatmentL’Oreal Infallible Bronzed Taupe, Makeup Geek MoondustMakeup Geek Mermaid, MAC Bamboo, MAC Ricepaper
No surprise - the areas I could slim down a bit are in the lip and eye colors. I see an appealing lip or eye color and I have to remind myself that I have enough, make good use of what I have. Lately, I have gotten to better know which colors, textures, etc., that I enjoy more than others, in both categories, so I have been able to curb the purchasing of more a bit… for now.

Fragrances, from bottom left corner, clockwise: 
Gucci Guilty sample, Marc Jacobs Honey rollerball, 
Givenchy Very Irresistible sample, Calgon Morning Glory body mist, 
Coach Love sample, Vera Wang Pink Princess
Marc Jacobs Daisy sample, Lancome La Vie Est Belle sample
The fragrance number includes sample, travel, rollerball, and full sizes. Most of them are samples, because whenever I make a purchase from stores that give free samples, I tend to choose fragrance samples over makeup or skincare ones. It’s a great way to test out a fragrance without having to buy a full-size, which can be pricey. It’s also easy to pass on a sample to others for them to try while not having to worry so much about sanitary conditions. Of the 24, 5 of them are full-sized scents. I have started going through the samples, to see what I like and what I can let go so that number will go down very soon.

Blushes, from left, clockwise: 
Tarte Amazonian Clay Exposed
NARS Deep Throat, MAC Immortal Flower
For most of the other categories, there could be a variety of reasons why I have very few items. I wasn’t always into the beauty thing; it’s a fairly recent interest of mine, and so I still don’t know much about it. I know very little about highlighting and I’m not that interested in it, so the one highlighter I have was from a free birthday store offer. Only in the last two years did I start picking up a few blushes and giving it a real try; I purposely stayed away from blush for years.

So, there are the numbers that work for me at the moment and some of the reasons as to why that is. In order to keep the Bank from… charging too much interest, I will be going on a low-buy for 2015; I haven’t settled on the details for it yet. I live on a low-buy, basically, but I could use some solid guidelines for things like lip products!

What is your Beauty Bank like?

  • I thought it would be weird to call what I have a “collection.” I’m not a beauty reviewer or collector really, so I like calling it a “bank.”  
  • I did not distinguish the samples from the full-sized products, as a sample is still one product to be used up; I did not distinguish well-used full-sized products from newer full-sized products.

Thank you for reading! You are welcome to leave a comment and/or question(s) in the section below :)

Friday, November 21, 2014

Healthy Go: Call Me Old Pants


View along evening walk.
52 flights of stairs, which is +8 from last week. 6 different buildings.

Building A: 3 +2 +5 +4 +4
Building B: 3
Building C: 2
Building D & E: 3 +3 +3
Building F: 4 +4 +4 + 4 +4

The stair tour, plus walking around, took an hour and a half. I did 8 flights during class break, and other than that had one other short break. Otherwise, I was on the move. In order to fit in so many stairs in about the same amount of time as before, I knew I had to keep moving and try to keep the buildings close together. I cut down on the pictures this time, a break in the routine.

Last Friday, I did take out the exercise mat to the garage for a test run. I didn’t do much. I think I ought to write out a plan when I do this. I also need to leave my paranoia at the door. Jump-roping outdoors is okay, but somehow lying on the garage floor, doing exercises, has me slightly on edge. I’m covered, but people (and when I say “people,” I mean “creepers”) are still able to see me.

Also, I’m not sure which way my feet should point. I’ll figure this out.

Subway Oven Roasted Chicken on flatbread
Starbucks Peppermint Mocha Frappuccino
Lemon iced tea, water, Apples & Greens Jamba, Sweet & Spicy Jamba flatbread, Starbucks Peppermint Mocha Frappuccino, Subway Oven Roasted Chicken on flatbread (provolone, spinach, onion, bell pepper, olive, avocado, pepper),  another Subway on wheat (spinach, lettuce, tomato, onion, bell pepper, olives, cucumber, pepper, American cheese), Fage Greek Yogurt with Strawberries, peanuts, macadamia nuts, Snapea Crisps, Barbara’s Baked White Cheddar Puffs, Blazin’ Steak with mushrooms and brown rice, Trader Joe’s Fruit Wrap (Apple & Blueberry), kiwifruits, and anything else I’ve forgotten.

I’ve been a little sick, minor. Didn’t feel like cooking. I had water, but also I had more iced tea than in the last few weeks.

The Peppermint Mocha Frappuccino was a free drink redemption. If I go to Starbucks, I usually order tea, iced or hot, but I like the Peppermint Mocha and the Salted Caramel Frappuccinos. I allow myself to order one when I have a drink redemption, which isn't very often. I did forget to order it no whip/ light. I do have to rethink this.

To Shoe Or Not To Shoe
I wore shoes on this stair day. One might have noticed in a previous picture that I was wearing slippers; I have modified nails on my two big toes due to damage so bad that they fell off entirely and regrew, only they regrew oddly. They tend to dig into my toes, so I am a huge fan of slippers and open-toed heels now.

However, doing a lot of stairs in slippers is not advised either, as my arches start to hurt and such, so I decided I would be “tough” and wear shoes for once. The toe pain wasn’t too bad, but I did end up with bruising under the nails. And with one irritated heel.

At least my arches didn’t hurt.

Call Me “Old Pants”
Not new pants!
(Please excuse the mess, I've been cleaning)
Actually, no, don’t. I’ll stick to “Fancy-pants” from a friend. ;)

Mom tells me last minute that the church is having the white tent something thing this week (bring items in, take items out). Sigh. I wish I had known sooner, had more time to prepare to give things up. Since I had cleaned my bookshelves back in… September (?), I have wanted to declutter my room, simplify things.

I have a difficult time going through things to give up on such short notice, but I found a few things. And then I found some stuff to take out of the storage box that I could use soon, mostly sweaters, as it can get cold and windy at times here.

The reason for the story: I also found an old pair of pants that I now fit again! I could stand to lose another inch or two around the waist for it to fit perfectly, so I look forward to that - motivation just got a boost.

Bonus: it’s a pair that I could wear for a job interview; I don’t have to hunt for a new pair of work pants, which has been on my mind for a time. I mean, I could use more work pants, but at least I have the one for any possible interviews that may arise.

Hooray for fitting into more clothes!

Still not enough movement. No good-looking stranger causing crooked pictures. Need more water.

Thank you for reading! You are welcome to leave a comment and/or question(s) in the section below :)

Disclaimer: I am not a professional health anything. I am a health trekker, updating my audience with the different sights, and hopefully encouraging others on their own journeys.

Building F, near top.
Building F, near top, looking down.
View along evening walk.
View along evening walk.
Subway Oven Roasted Chicken on wheat
Blazin' Steaks Plate with Mushrooms and Brown Rice


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Star-influenced: Gwen Stefani & OPI

OPI: 2013 Gwen Stefani Collection
L-R: In True Stefani Fashion, 4 In The Morning,
Love.Angel.Music.Baby., I Sing In Color,
and Hey Baby

 I am not normally one to buy something because of a celebrity. However, I didn’t want to pass up on the 2013 Gwen Stefani collection for OPI.

1. I like Gwen Stefani. I like the music of No Doubt and Stefani’s solo work. I like her personality; she reminds me of a good friend of mine. I like her fashion designs. If she’s human, I don’t think I want to know! :P

2. I wanted to try OPI nail polishes, eventually. I have enough nail polish - it’s not something I tend to go crazy over - but I have become appreciative of the brands frequently used in nail salons, and OPI is used in nail salons. What I’m trying to say is that I’ve been interested in trying OPI nail polish but was not in a rush about it.

3. OPI and Stefani worked together on a nail polish collection last December, which I missed because I don’t follow fashion/ beauty things much. I considered finding one online somehow, as what better way to choose an OPI color to try than something related to someone I like.

4. I go to TJMaxx every so often just to walk around and look. Recently, I found that they had the Stefani collection from last year.

Therefore, I picked up 5 of the nail polishes from the 2013 collection. I don’t know if they are Limited Edition or not; just before seeing them at TJMaxx, I saw them at a local salon, and some of them can be found online. I got these for about half the price that they were at the salon.

Hey Baby -
I Sing In Color with 4 In The Morning accent nail
(outdoor lighting)
(Descriptions taken from The Polishaholic, link in the bottom notes)
“A bright pink creme.”
To be honest, I didn’t need another bright pink, and I’m not usually one to use the excuse “but they are slightly different” when it comes to nail polish. I wear the bright pinks enough that I will probably make good use of this one as well.

In True Stefani Fashion -
“A glitter bomb with silver and holographic glitter.”
I also don’t use a lot of glitter polishes - I only have two other glitter treatments and one colored base with glitter in it. I like that this one has different glitters - two or three differently sized rounds and one size of squares - and that it is thick with the glitter.

Love. Angel. Music. Baby. -
“A gold satin matte.”
This is the one I am most excited to try. I tend to go for silver over gold in general, but I like this kind of pale gold. The swatches I have seen look great.

I Sing In Color -
“A dark vampy red.”
I am most iffy about this one because it’s not anything I would normally go for at all - I bought my first red polish earlier just this year. I am okay with dark nail colors, so we will see how it looks on my nails.

4 In The Morning -
“A black base with a soft silver shimmer.”
Okay, I REALLY didn’t need this one. It is essentially just a slightly darker shade of another polish that I already had. This one is a “satin” while the other is a completely matte shade. Unlike with the multiple bright pinks, I don’t know that I’ll be reaching for these polishes enough to keep both for the long haul.

If I end up not liking any of them, I have friends who enjoy nail polish, or I might donate them to an organization.

4 In The Morning with I Sing In Color accent nail
(indoor lighting)
Update: today, I put on I Sing In Color and 4 In The Morning - I am pleased so far! I used a base coat, two coats of color, and then I used a top coat only over the vampy red. I can’t speak on longevity yet, of course, but I like how smoothly they went on.

I Sing In Color does look a little patchy in the photo, but that was due to my impatient hand - it went on much better on the other hand. 4 In The Morning is quite different from the other polish that was already in my collection; I will probably be keeping both but if it came down to choosing… I would probably keep 4 In The Morning over the other one, slightly. It is a smooth satin black that is not flat.

OPI has teamed up with Stefani again for this year’s holiday collection. I probably won’t be getting any from this year, just because I have enough nail polish and these 5 from last year are enough to satisfy me for awhile. You can read more about it and see swatches here: [ThePolishAholic: OPI Holiday 2014 Gwen Stefani Collection Swatches & Review].

Do you have any OPI nail polish favorites?
Have you bought anything because of the celebrity name attached?

Thank you for reading! You are welcome to leave a comment and/or question(s) in the section below :)

A thank you to The PolishAholic for the polish descriptions; find the descriptions and swatches here: [ThePolishAholic: OPI Gwen Stefani Collection Swatches & Review].

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Get Used Up To It Project Update - November 2014


I had two goals for the project:

1. To use up products
2. To get used to using certain products


The List

MAC Studio Fix Powder Foundation
Tarte Maracuja Miracle Foundation
Rimmel Stay Matte Powder
Nuance Tinted Moisturizer
Revlon Photoready Concealer
Milani Baked Blush -Luminoso
Maybelline Color Tattoo - Bad to the Bronze
- Audacious Asphalt
Sei Bella (Nicole Miller) Eyeshadow Duo Compact - Caribbean/ Midnight
- Fiji/ Moss
Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Nude Eyeliner - Pewter
Sei Bella Definition Brow Pencil - Brunette
Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick -Smoked Peach
Revlon Lip Butter -Strawberry Shortcake
Sei Bella Lipstick - Sunripened
NYX Mega Shine Lip Gloss -Frosted Beige
Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain - Crush
China Glaze nail polish - Peachy Keen
Physicians Formula Organic Wear Mascara

Products in bold = ones used 4 or more times during the interval.

Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in Crush
Sei Bella Brow Pencil in Brunette
Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Smoked Peach
Revlon Balm Stain Crush: leaves a pretty red plum stain. I’m starting to like it on its own, but still not into such a dark burgundy color. It’s odd - the first application, I have to build up the color or it looks patchy and weird, but then it gets too dark and burgundy. If I wipe it off after that, and go back with a lighter application, it’s a little more like the plum color that can be okay on me - still a bit dark, but wearable because the stain underneath doesn’t contain much brown in it. Maybe it’s my lighting that throws me off.

I can use Crush for its stain as a base for other lip colors as well. It would go great as a base for something more sheer like the Revlon Lip Butters or as a booster for something that doesn’t last as long. It also has the potential to help me wear a color that I don’t like as much by changing it up a little.

Anyway, I’ve been using Crush a lot more now that I can get the color to work for me; I already really liked the formula of the product. I’ve been using it even on days that I stay home because it feels so good on the lips.

Revlon Lipstick Smoked Peach: I’ve found another way to make it work for me - layer it over the red plum stain of Crush. The downside is that refreshing the color is tricky, since it’s from a stain + matte lipstick layering. I have been wiping off the lipstick, refreshing the stain a little, and then putting on more Smoked Peach. I haven’t tried using a gloss or balm on top of it yet.

Sei Bella Brow Pencil: If I could figure out how to use a lighter hand with it and have it still look like an improvement from my bare brows, it would be good. I need to find a spoolie - it would help immensely.

Maybelline Color Tattoo in Bad to the Bronze
Bad to the Bronze: I’ve hit bottom! It’s a little easier to use now and somehow feels creamier, or at least, less dry. I have come to dislike the color a little less than before; I won’t miss it when it’s gone or really dried out, and I’m ready to move on to others that I have and like more. One can see in the picture of it that there’s a crumbly area and a smooth area. I’ve been using the smooth area, where it is still creamy enough to use. Once that runs out, I’ll be tossing it.

Nuance Tinted Moisturizer in Medium
Rimmel Stay Matte Powder in Transparent
Nuance Tinted Moisturizer: Medium is too dark. I have been trying to figure out a way to balance it out to better match my skin, but either I haven’t found a good technique or I don’t have the right balancing color/ powder product to do it. Also, one can still see the discoloration of my skin through the tint, of course, but it almost looks like it enhances the discoloration, at least on my face, with this tint. I like the idea of a tinted moisturizer, though even on a casual day, I’d rather use a foundation/ product that has a little coverage or go bare-faced. It did help me look like I had a little tan, but I don’t really care for the tanned look on myself.

Rimmel Stay Matte Powder: I think I’m getting the hang of this product! Before, I was using a small brush that was made to be a setting brush. I have since tried using a bigger and less dense blush brush with this powder - it just popped into my mind one day to try it out. I think this is working better for me. It doesn’t cake on the powder, even if I make several passes over my shiny areas, and yet I can tell that the powder is there, reducing the shine.

China Glaze nail lacquer in Peachy Keen
Tarte Maracuja Miracle Foundation in Light
Other notes: My skin has been pretty good, and so I had not much need for the concealer.

Some of the measurement pictures are from the previous update, as some products start to look quite icky in photos the more one uses them (especially when mixing them with other lip colors); see the differences in the pictures of Crush and Smoked Peach to see what I mean.

I still don’t know how to make good use of lip glosses, so either I could keep trying or I just don’t prefer them.

I think one of the markings on Peachy Keen rubbed off.

November measurements, with October
and September marks
Didn’t use up any items this time around, but did get used to more, so… I think I did okay.
This will be the last project update for this year. Already, I am thinking about changes to how I’ve been doing this (like shortening the ridiculous name of it because not everyone is into ridiculosity like I am). I will probably do a separate post about it, once I have the ideas a little more worked out (if that ever happens).

In case I don’t get to that separate post, I can say here that I am glad that I did this, even though I wasn’t quite sure about it or what I wanted at the start. Through this project, I’ve become more confident in my skills and in getting to better know what I like. It has provided practice in writing about such things, as well as practice in picture-taking (it’s gotten a little better, right?).  

Thanksgiving is next week - I am thankful that people have been stopping by here! I hope you have a wonderful holiday season!

Thank you for reading! You are welcome to leave a comment in the section below :)
Click on pictures for larger view.