A Makeup Quote by Kat Von D

If you're a fan of Kat Von D you need to get this issue of Latina Magazine!

“Putting on makeup to me is a lot like meditation. It’s an uninterrupted time where it’s just me, and I don’t have to think about anything. People make fun of me when I do one blue eye or one smoky brown eye. But I think if you take [makeup] too seriously, you kind of miss the point. It’s all about being creative and having fun. It's makeup, not childbirth!" -Kat Von D

I'm not sure where the quote above came from, but I made note of it so that I could blog about it. 

People react in interesting ways once they find out I'm obsessed with makeup and beauty. While it's easy for people to understand a baseball card collection or a Precious Moments collection, most people would see a makeup collection as wasteful and unnecessary. That is because most people consider makeup a necessity, a burden, not something to be curated or enjoyed. Obviously, I disagree, and so does Kat Von D.

Makeup is and should be fun. It's always nice to have a few moments to yourself before heading out for the day (or night). When makeup lovers apply lipstick or shadow, they enjoy every sensation and visual. They pay attention to how the lipstick glides on. Some lipstick glides on like butter, others give the lip a bit of a fight (yet stay on the whole night.) Some shadows sparkle like tinsel while others give the skin the slightest glow. Basically, we have fun with it.

While I wouldn't wear two different shadow colors as Miss Von D does, I do enjoy putting on makeup, researching new products and even seeking out unique items from across the globe. Makeup shouldn't be viewed as a symbol of oppression or control. You have the ability to create the best version of yourself, or even a different version of yourself for the day. Have fun with it. "It's makeup, not childbirth!"

Drugstore Skincare Reviews: L'Oreal Hydrafresh Toner

I was convinced that toner didn't really do anything for my skin. I figured it was just an extra step that I didn't need, since I had the negative belief my skin would always be a hot mess. As a teen my skin was very oily and acne-prone. One positive to getting older is that my skin has calmed down a bit. While it still gets oily, it can now get dry as easily as the shine used to break through just a few hours after applying my makeup.  I briefly used Shiseido's Balancing Toner from their amazing Pureness line, but I couldn't see much of a change in my skin. I continued to read about the importance of toners (removing trace amounts of makeup and dead skin cells, helping with the appearance of pores, balancing the skin, etc.) so I decided to give it another try and add toner into my skincare routine. 

I've wanted to cut down on spending, so I wanted to find a drugstore skincare product I could use. I usually advocate avoiding drugstores for skincare, only because I have mostly had negative experiences with those products. However, since I never found ANY toner that worked, I decided to give L'Oreal's HydraFresh Toner a try.

Here are the product claims from the L'Oreal website:

"HydraFresh Toner’s gentle, nondrying formula refreshes and softens skin in a splash, revealing a smoother, brighter complexion and leaving skin smooth and supple.
  • Beta Hydroxy Acid gently sweeps away dull, tired skin while Pro-Vitamin B5 helps protect against moisture loss.
  • 99% alcohol free.
  • Dermatologist tested for gentleness."

The keywords that made me pick up that bottle? "99% Alcohol Free", "Beta Hydroxy Acid", and "Pro-Vitamin B5". Those are all great ingredients for the skin.

I have to say I will be repurchasing this product. I honestly feel it keeps my skin balanced and I do see less redness. Pores are a major problem for me, and I have seen a slight improvement in the appearance of pores and the texture of my skin. Good price, good product, win win!

L'Oreal HydraFresh Toner retails for around $7 USD, but you can find it cheaper.

Do you believe a toner is worth using? Have you seen a difference in your skin?

My First Indie Nail Polish Haul from Black Cat Lacquer

I was introduced to the world of indie nail polish via Instagram. For awhile, all I did was like and follow certain accounts and drool over the gorgeous swatches. Really, if you haven't signed up for Instagram and you're a beauty addict you MUST go do so IMMEDIATELY! The amount of "makeup porn" on there is incredible.

Anyhow, back to the nail polishes. I am a sucker for packaging and special collections, so when I saw that Black Cat Lacquer had a Disney-related collection I was done. I love Disney. I am obsessed with Disney. I grew up wanting to be a Disney animator (they weren't called Imagineers yet) and I dream of one day traveling to ALL of the Disney parks across the globe. So, these babies HAD to be mine!

999 Happy Haunts is described as a " a glitterbomb filled with black, white , neon green and lavender glitters with rainbow shimmer," a perfect description for this gorgeously ghoulish polish!


Oh, Mickey You're So Fine! is "a glitterbomb made of silver holo, red, black & white glitters with a rainbow shimmer base." And some of those little pieces of glitter are shaped just like a certain famous mouse!

I have yet to do a mani with these as I just received them the other day, but I will probably post photos of that mani on Instagram. Speaking of which; did you make that account yet? Make sure you follow me!

Makeup Tip Scrapbook- A Collection of Tips I Find Along the Way...

((This will be updated constantly! Feel free to add your tips in the comments :) xoxo))

From Masuimi Max: Use your skin-toned powder to blend/highlight the brow bone when doing a dramatic smokey look

From Risa: Do your crease color first to aid in blending eyeshadow

From Laura Mercier: Tightline (line the inside of the upper lash line) your eyes to add definition without traditional lining methods.

From Kevyn Aucoin: Always wipe off your mascara wand. The excess product will wilt curled lashes, could cause clumps and make for a sloppier application.

From FashionFaceTV: Use a soft crease brush (like a MAC 224) to apply your concealer for a blended and flawless finish.

At work: Use an angled brush to apply a thin line of highlight right under the brow. Not only does it give an extra pop without full on highlight, it also cleans up the brow line.

My Current Go-To Lipstick

I'm a pale person. Despite living in Florida, I have embraced my fair skin and have decided to protect it as much as possible from the sun's harmful effects. The downside is, without certain makeup items, I can look too pale...and people will make sure to let me know that. "Are you sick?" "You look different today." "What happened?" I am definitely not someone that can go without SOME sort of makeup. Usually, lipstick is the first item I will reach for.

It's no secret I love VS Beauty. Their blushes, bronzers and lip glosses are some of the best I have ever used and the prices are affordable. Lately, their Color Drama Lipstick in "Wish" has been my go-to color.

I'm willing to call this color the "Perfect Pink." Sometimes, pink lipsticks make your teeth look yellow and aren't flattering at all. This pink, thanks to the slight warm tone, brightens up my complexion without giving me Barbie lips. The texture is smooth and creamy with a nice sheen and slightly sheer pigmentation. As you can see in the image above, there is also a slight shimmer to the product. I assure you, all it does is give your lips the illusion of fullness--there is no "sparkle" visible once applied. This will definitely be a lipstick I repurchase.

Have you tried the VS Beauty lipsticks yet?

Travelling Light: How I Stuck to My Carry-On

I had never seen an apple tree before! I was so excited. Kalamazoo, Michigan 2013.
I think it's safe to say that flying has lost a lot of its magic. I'm not even referring to the days of Pan Am (I miss that show), I'm talking about flying pre-TSA takeover.

The 3-1-1 Rule has caused a lot of grief for travelers. Mothers with infants have had issues traveling with formula and those with illnesses , such as diabetes, that require a lot of care have also been held back in airport lines or had their items confiscated.

For those of us that like to travel with a makeup arsenal, though the inconvenience isn't as severe as those listed above, the 3-1-1 rule is our worst enemy. So many beauty products come in liquid form and often in sizes much larger than the allotted 3 oz.--especially fragrance.

As far as my packing style? I am notorious for over packing. People tell me every joke in the book: "Do you have a dead body in there?" "Are you moving away?" "It's only a few days!" I've had to pay for luggage that passes the weight limit and, at times, I've had to store some of my things in another person's luggage.

So, I promised myself that I would use only a carry-on on a recent trip to Michigan--and somehow I did! I used two makeup bags for this trip, one for liquids/creams and the other for powders/solids. The powder bag I tossed into my carry-on while I kept the liquids bag in my backpack for easy inspection.

"Powder/Solids" Bag

  • Travel-size deodorant 
  • Blush (VS Makeup Luminous Mineral Blush Duo...I LOVE these!)
  • Pressed Powder (I did not bring loose powder. I used pressed  L'Oreal True Match powder to set and touch up.)
  • Eyeshadow Quad ( Shu Uemura...an old favorite LE palette.)
  • Toothbrush
  • Makeup Brushes (Blush, Foundation, Shadow, Blending, Kabuki, Eyebrow/Angle Brush)
  • Dry Shampoo (My favorite, Pronto Dry Shampoo by Oscar Blandi)
  • Baby Wipes (These do not have to go in your "liquids" bag. I use them to remove makeup.)
  • Lip Balm (Green Apple Chapstick) **There is some controversy as to whether lip balm and lipstick count as solids or not. I left my lipbalm in my backpack and I had no problems. However, I played it safe and put lipstick in the other bag.

"Creams/Liquids" Bag

I used the 3D Clear Organizer by Tom Bihn. It's very sturdy and easy to clean; plus, it won't burst open like a plastic baggie will and I will be able to reuse it for a very long time. While I decanted most of my skincare into smaller bottles, next time I will use empty contact lens cases for all. Each well holds enough product for a 3-4 day trip and it saves a LOT of space! Inside the bag went:

And yes, all of that fit!

I have to say I am very excited to pack for another trip. I really want to streamline my technique and be a packing pro.

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