Mini Drugstore Haul

It’s not completely abnormal to find me at my local Target on a Friday or Saturday night. This past weekend, I was meandering around the makeup aisles when I noticed that my Target had started carrying the brand Essence. I was stoked! Essence is an extremely affordable brand, and their products are actually quite good.

Essence Say No to Dark Circles

If you’re like me, you struggle to cover up the dark circles underneath your eyes. This little Essence Say NO to Dark Circles Concealer crayon called out to me from one of the shelves, so I decided to give it a try. I actually layered it underneath my go-to concealer, and it did provide a little brightness. My undereyes are pretty relentless, however, so this product only helped a little bit. I may try dabbing a bit on top of my concealer next time to see if I get any better results. I did also notice that it seemed to crease a bit by the end of the day.

Katy Kat Matte and Essence Lipstick

I also decided to add more to my ever-growing lip collection. Pictured here are the Katy Kat Matte lipstick in “Kitty Purry” and the Essence Lipstick in “Barely There.” The Katy Kat lipstick is Katy Perry’s collaboration with CoverGirl. They are both nice affordable lipsticks, but I prefer the Essence one a little more. I love the color and the formula is great, especially considering the $3 price tag!

Essence So Glow Highlighter

Out of all the things I picked up the other day, this one has to be my favorite! This is the Essence Soo Glow! Cream to Powder Highlighter in the color “Bright Up Your Life”. I never really like to go overboard on highlighter, but sometimes it’s fun to add a little glow to my cheeks. They have a pink shade and a white shade. The pink looked a bit more natural on me (well, as natural as a highlighter can look haha), so I decided to go with it. You can see that it has a very noticeable glow, and the color is pretty buildable. This highlighter is a great choice for those of us with pale skin!

Essence How to Make Your Face Glow Palette

The last product I got is this Essence How to Make Your Face Glow palette. The packaging is what initially drew me in; it’s adorable! Normally I have to be pretty careful with bronzer since there is no part of me that is bronze at all, but this one is light enough to make sense on my skin. The color also seems buildable, so it could work on darker complexions as well. The highlighter in the palette has a definite glow; I noticed the shimmer as soon as I applied it! The blush color is a nice pink shade and very pigmented, so I have to be careful with how much I apply!

Overall, I’m happy with my recent mini haul. It’s always nice to find makeup that looks great and doesn’t come with the hefty price tag!

What are your recent favorite drugstore makeup purchases? Let me know in the comments!

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Do you ever stumble upon a product that makes you wonder, “Where have you been all my life?” Well, this is exactly what happened with me and coconut oil.

This handy little substance is something most people keep in their kitchen, but not a lot of people know that you can use it in your beauty routine as well! A jar is around $8 and can do incredible things for your skin and hair. My mom is the one who introduced it to me several years ago when I was complaining about how dry my hair was after bleaching it, and now it has become something I can’t live without!

Here are three ways I’ve incorporated coconut oil into my own personal beauty routine:

  1. A night cream for your face – Skip the chemicals and synthetics and hydrate your face with something completely natural instead. I know what you’re thinking… “Oil on your face?! What?” As someone with combination/oily skin, I was a little skeptical at first as well. I decided to bite the bullet and try it one night, and was pleasantly surprised to find that I woke up with my skin feeling softer with no new breakouts! I apply a small amount (about 1/8 of a teaspoon) all over my face. I let it dry for a few minutes before hopping into bed and have it do the work while I sleep…easy peasy! Coconut oil has antibacterial properties and also serves as an excellent hydrator which makes it very suitable for your face. It actually soaks into your skin, so you won’t wake up with the light layer of oil on your face you went to sleep with. If you’re still not sold on leaving it on all night, you can always use it as a mask instead. Leave it on for fifteen minutes and rinse off any excess oil with water and pat dry. Another alternative is to mix a small amount with a moisturizer you commonly use. Any way you choose to use it, I’m sure you’ll reap the benefits!
  2. A deep conditioning treatment for your hair – Sometimes my hair can get dry, frizzy, and untamable. I’ve still yet to find something that smoothes my relentless frizz, but I do find that coconut oil softens my hair and makes it more manageable. How much you use will depend on the length and thickness of your hair, but usually I just pull my hair back into a ponytail and saturate that length of hair with the oil. I definitely try to avoid putting any near my roots. The next morning, I’ll take a shower, wash my hair as I normally do, and discover how much softer it is after it is dried.
  3. A relief for severely dry and cracked skin – I used to never have dry feet, but it was just my luck to develop extremely parched soles about a year ago. I tried foot cream, exfoliating, and wearing socks to bed (which I absolutely hate, by the way), and nothing seemed to work. Recently, I started applying coconut oil to my feet every night before bed (sockless of course), and it hasdefinitely been providing some relief. It hasn’t been long enough to tell if it will completely solve my problem, but I can see it’s softening them up and keeping the dryness under control. Fingers crossed for this one!

As you can see, coconut oil is a handy little thing to keep in your beauty arsenal. There are so many more things I’ve heard people use it for, too. Did you know you could use it as a makeup remover? Absolutely boggles my mind how many uses you can get from this natural invention! Another note I should make is a little goes a long way with this stuff, so that 16 oz jar should last you awhile. You also want to make sure you’re picking up virgin or extra virgin coconut oil as well; the less refined the better.

 

Do you have a holy grail natural beauty product? What is something your night routine can’t go without?

 

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5 Favorite Fall Eyeshadow Palettes

The season of neutrals is upon us. It’s hard to ignore the beautiful color combinations and hues fall brings us each and every year. Reds, browns, taupes, bronzes, and colors of the like are seen dusted across the eyelids of beauty enthusiasts everywhere during this time, so I thought I’d share with you a few of my own personal fall favorites. Of course I use these palettes year-round, but the colors in them are just so suited for this time of year that they deserved their own special fall feature. *By the way, these are arranged in no particular order!*

  1. Urban Decay Naked Palette ($54) – I think this is one of those palettes that is (or at least was) considered a cult classic beauty product. For awhile, every makeup tutorial included at least one of the shades in this palette. Though it is less talked about now, I still find myself reaching for this reliable collection of colors. “Naked,” a color in the palette, is one of the best transition shades EVER. It includes a mixture of matte and shimmery neutrals that are perfect for everyday wear in the fall. There are also some darker tones at the right end of the palette to create a look for a night out.
  2. Too Faced Natural Eyes Palette ($36) – Simplicity is key with this little eyeshadow tin. First, Too Faced has been my favorite eyeshadow brand for awhile. The eyeshadows are great quality, the branding is always on point, and they’re always coming up with creative concepts for their products. I hold this palette a little close to my heart because it was the first “high-end” makeup product I’ve ever owned. Though the palette only contains 9 shades, it’s easy to come up with different looks both bold and subtle. It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you’re looking at a palette that has 15-20 colors in it, but Too Faced simplifies this process by picking a small array of neutral eyeshadows that all work great together. When you’re running late, this is a great palette to reach for because you’ll be able to create a kick-ass look without even trying.
  3. Tartelette 2 in Bloom Palette ($45) – I walked into Sephora planning on just looking/not buying one day, and yet somehow ended up walking out of the store with this palette in hand. Something about the mud-colored shadows in this palette had me drawn in immediately. Okay, mud doesn’t exactly sound like a good description, but in this case it is. I love every single shade in this palette. From the tans to the reds to the dark browns, I was in fall eyeshadow heaven! I picked the Tartelette 2 palette over the original palette because of the shimmery shades. I personally like to have a mixture of both just for the sake of variety. This palette is a nice change from the typical brown neutrals because of the introduction of the reds and pinks. If you’re looking for something neutral but still a little different, this palette is a good pick!
  4. Lorac Pro Metal Palette ($28) – This palette is a little more experimental and definitely not neutral, but the metal-inspired hues remind me of fall because of their tones. Even though it’s a colorful palette, they are not bright or vivid. Colorful and bright are not just for spring and summer anymore! If you’re not into the crazy color combinations, I still think this palette has some fun shades you can use in combination with more neutral shades.
  5. Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette ($49) – There is a reason this palette has a lot of buzz around it – it’s nothing short of amazing. The eyeshadows blend so beautifully with each other, and you get pops of pink and purple in the midst of all the luscious browns. I think this palette is enchanted by some type of makeup sorcery because it’s hard to create a look with it that isn’t bomb as hell. Oh, and did I mention that it legitimately smells like chocolate? Yum.

 

Which palette(s) do you find yourself reaching for the most in the fall? Let me know in the comments!

 

5 Favorite Fall Eyeshadow Palettes

Perfect Poncho Sweater

Casual looks featured on blogs have always been my favorite. They’re practical, relatable, and they’re what I happen to wear the most. I stumbled upon this amazing poncho sweater from Red Dress Boutique the other day and ordered it right away. You can’t get much more casual than a poncho sweater in the fall; they’re so easy and effortless. If I find anything that remotely looks like a blanket on-the-go, I’m sold.

Perfect Poncho Sweater

Perfect Poncho Sweater

Besides it being extremely cozy, I loved the dark mauve color and waffle knit pattern of this sweater. It’s perfect if you live somewhere that has moderate fall weather because of the exposed arms. When it starts to get a little chillier, you could slip a long-sleeved shirt underneath for extra warmth.

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On this particular day, I decided to pair it with an ivory bucket bag, all white sneakers, and dainty gold earrings. Minimalistic accessories are imperative when I’m going for casual comfort.

Perfect Poncho Sweater

Though I dressed this poncho sweater down, I think it’s also something that can be dressed up just as easily. Pair it with white or black skinny jeans, heels, and sleek accessories and you’ll have an entirely different look.

What fall trends have you been loving lately? Let me know in the comments!

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I was feeling pretty bored Wednesday night and decided to get a little frisky with the scissors. I’ve been thinking about getting bangs for awhile, but honestly didn’t want to pay for a visit to the salon for an expensive haircut I wasn’t even sure I’d like. After watching multiple YouTube videos of girls effortlessly cutting their own bangs, I mustered up the courage to grab some scissors and create a Zooey Deschanel inspired hair-do of my own.

Bangs were an essential part of my hair for the first 10 years of my life. After I grew them out, I swore I would never get them again because I always felt like they make you look like a little girl. Recently, however, I’ve had the bang bug and just needed to try them out again. Normally when I get bored with my hair I get it chopped to shoulder length. I didn’t want to do that quite yet, so I thought bangs would be a great way to change up my hair without doing anything too drastic.

I stood in the mirror for what seemed like an hour holding the scissors against the hair I was about to cut. Finally, the voice inside my head screamed, “Just do it!” And so I did it. It was a little terrifying holding the long strands of hair I had just severed. It took a second to process, but after I tidied them up I was pretty pleased with how they turned out! They didn’t look too bad for someone who hasn’t cut their own hair since the 8th grade (or has zero formal training).

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Ultimately, though, bangs require some upkeep. You actually have to style them and make sure they’re looking fresh. You can’t pull them back into a ponytail, and they stick up out of your headband. Bobby pins don’t do a good job holding them back either; little pieces like to fall out. If high-maintenance hairstyles aren’t your thing, you should probably avoid bangs. However, I LOVE the way they look when your hair is pulled back! It just adds a little something to your up-do without having to put much effort into it.

Even though I was trying to go for a edgier look (it ended up being more cutesy… haha), I definitely don’t regret cutting my bangs. It was fun to try out a new hairstyle I swore off years ago, and it definitely cured my hair boredom (for now). The way I cut them made for some really cute side bangs, too, which will definitely be featured in a post later on!

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If you’re feeling courageous enough to try it yourself, I say go for it! There are tons of step-by-step videos out there to see the techniques and pump yourself up. You have nothing to lose except a few inches of hair ;).

Just remember when you’re about to make the cut:

  1. Breathe.
  2. It’s just hair. It’ll grow back. Promise.

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Cutting your own hair can seem pretty scary, especially if you haven’t done it before. I would say only cut your own bangs if you trust yourself with scissors and if you’ll be okay if they don’t look exactly the way you wanted. Otherwise, happy snipping!

Have you ever cut your own hair/bangs before? Did it turn out the way you wanted or was it a disaster? Share your hair stories in the comments!