beauty

Mint + Pearl Polka Dot DIY Nail Art

Deborah Lippmann 'Flowers In Her Hair' with Pearl Polka Dots DIY Nail Art |www.platinumblondelife.com

I could not resist picking up Deborah Lippmann’s ‘Flowers In Her Hair’, a shade that is arguably my favorite color. The formula makes a DIY manicure so so easy, and for that I don’t mind paying the price. I decided to add a few pearl polka dots using Sephora’s dotting tool and Sinful Colors ‘Tokyo Pearl’.

Deborah Lippmann 'Flowers In Her Hair' with Pearl Polka Dots DIY Nail Art |www.platinumblondelife.com

Apply Base Coat.
Apply Two Coats of Mint Nail Polish
Allow to Dry Fully

Deborah Lippmann 'Flowers In Her Hair' with Pearl Polka Dots DIY Nail Art |www.platinumblondelife.com

Pour a small amount of Pearl Nail Polish onto magazine or paper plate
Dip dotting tool (or alternatively a toothpick) into pearl polish and strategically place dots on each nail.
Allow to dry completely.
Apply Top Coat.

Deborah Lippmann 'Flowers In Her Hair' with Pearl Polka Dots DIY Nail Art |www.platinumblondelife.comHappy Spring!

Winterize Your Beauty Routine

New York has experienced record low temps the past few days, so I have fully implemented my winter beauty routine. Dry winter air tends to wreak havoc on my skin and hair, so in addition to drinking a ton of water and constantly applying lip balm, I use these products listed below to help revitalize my face, body, nails & hair during the cold winter months!
winterize your beauty routine | www.platinumblondelife.com

BODY: FRESH Seaberry Exfoliating Soap $16.50 @ Sephora– This bar exfoliates and hydrates while it cleanses!
Bliss high intensity 24-‘heaven’ healing body balm $35 @ Bliss– My moisturizing efforts go into overdrive in the cold months, this body butter has already done wonders for my skin! I also love that it smells nice but in a subtle way.

FACE: Aveeno Positively Radiant Cleanser with Pump Top $6 @ drugstore.com — This is a drugstore steal, I recently switched from my Neutrogena face wash to this and am never going back! It is hypoallergenic & oil-free, cleanses skin without leaving skin feeling tight & dry.
Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief $37 @ Clinique — This is a moisturizer that does double duty. I use it as my daily face moisturizer, but it can also be used as a 5 minute mask! This fights dry winter skin like nothing I’ve ever tried!
Estée Lauder Night Serum Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex $62 @ Nordstrom — I got hooked on this after receiving multiple sample sized bottles (those lasted me forever- a little goes a long way), even if you don’t have a need for an “aging” cream, this will revitalize and moisturize your skin while you sleep.

NAILS: L’OCCITANE SHEA BUTTER Nail & Cuticle Cream $18 @ Beauty.com — I smooth this rich cream over my nails and cuticles and have noticed an improvement in their appearance. Noticeably absent are the cracked peeling nails of winter’s past.
butter LONDON Horse Power – Nail Fertilizer $19 @ Macy’s– This can be used as both a basecoat and a topcoat and uses an herbal ingredient called ‘Horsetail’ to strengthen and repair nails. Apply one coat every day for 7 days, then remove and begin again. Use for one month.

HAIR: A few things that can really help your hair during the winter are: A) Getting a trim B) Getting an oil treatment–I swear by the Moroccan Hot Oil Treatment my salon offers  & C) NOT washing your hair every day. I had to force myself to NOT wash my hair, because I was one of those people who claimed “I HAVE to wash my hair every day” and would cite my fine, light colored hair, but once I started skipping shampoos and simply freshening up with a dry shampoo, I found that my hair started looking better and feeling softer.

PHYTO Phytojoba Intense Hydrating Brilliance Shampoo $19 @ Sephora; PHYTO Phytobaume Repair Express Conditioner $19 @ Sephora; — When I do wash my hair (every other or 2 days) I use hydrating shampoos & conditioners, the conditioner I especially love because it smooths and hydrates my hair with out weighing it down.
John Masters Organics Dry Hair Nourishment and Defrizzer $16 @ John Masters Organics– I use a tiny bit of this to calm frizz and combat split ends. It can also be used for scalp problems (eczema & dermatitis)
Feed Your Ends Leave-In Conditioner @ Yarok $12-23 — I have long hair, so wind, snow, rain tends to tangle my hair, this helps keep the combing process pain-free and helps protect my hair from heat styling.
Blowpro Faux Dry-Dry Shampoo $20 @ Ulta — There are 8 zillion dry shampoos on the market, and I may have tried them all. This one I love! If you are looking for one that is super affordable but still great I recommend Psssssst.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Haul & Swatches

Marc Jacobs Beauty Haul

I’ve been a long time fan of Marc Jacobs fragrance line, so I knew that I would eventually splurge on these sleek rounded packages. The vast majority of the items in the MJB range seem to be worth the splurge. I was drawn to the nail lacquer, but ultimately passed in efforts to keep my costs down. I did pick up Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel in “Have We Met?”($30)  a lustrous medium pink shade with flecks of gold micro glitter. It applies smoothly, is very moisturizing and is mostly opaque. It instantly became my favorite lip color!

Marc Jacobs Beauty Have We Met? (108) Lovemarc Lip Gel

Marc Jacobs Beauty Lovemarc Lip Gel ‘Have We Met’Have We Met? (108) Lovemarc Lip Gel Swatch

Marc Jacobs Beauty Lovemarc Lip Gel ‘Have We Met’ Lip Swatch

I was also drawn to the light pink/coral Lust for Lacquer Lip Vinyl ‘Heart Shaped’($28), a semi-sheer gloss with golden shimmer. I thought this would compliment ‘Have We Met’ and also look great on its own.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Lip Gel & LIp Lacquer Swatches

{left to right} Marc Jacobs Beauty Lip Gel ‘Have We Met’; Marc Jacobs Beauty Lust for Lacquer – Lip Vinyl ‘Heart Shaped’ SwatchesMarc Jacobs Beauty Lust For Lacquer LIp Applicator Marc Jacobs Beauty Lust for Lacquer – Lip Vinyl ‘Heart Shaped’ Sponge Applicator

Marc Jacobs Beauty Lust for Lacquer - Lip Vinyl Lip Swatch

Marc Jacobs Beauty Lust for Lacquer – Lip Vinyl ‘Heart Shaped’ Lip Swatch

The entire Marc Jacobs Beauty collection is tempting, but expensive. I was especially drawn to these slim, glossy black palettes. Each contain seven eyeshadows and a mirror and are packaged in a black drawstring pouch. They retail for $59 each. I picked up the most neutral palette “The Lolita” & “The Starlet”.  Each includes seven powder eye shadows. My only complaint is that each comes with a cheap drugstore style sponge applicator- a touch that seems the very opposite of luxe.

Marc Jacobs Beauty The Lolita (206) Style Eye-Con No. 7 PaletteMarc Jacobs Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette “The Lolita”

Marc Jacobs Beauty The Lolita (206) Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette

Marc Jacobs Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette “The Lolita”: Three matte shades (1) off-white cream, (2) tan & (3) dark coffee.  All are powdery, buttery soft! They do kick up a lot of dust in the palette but apply & blend so smoothly. The next shades are all metallic. The middle shade is an (4) iridescent pink glittery shade, that produced the most fall-out and was a bit fussy to work with. It was my least favorite shade in the palette.


Marc Jacobs Beauty The Lolita (206) Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette

 

Marc Jacobs Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette “The Lolita” : Metallic shades in a (4) warm glittery pink, (5) iridescent champagne pink sheen, (6) light peach sheen, and a (7) rosy copper sheen.  The last three shades were my favorite. They also apply & blend wonderfully, and are buildable but none are particularly unique. All of the shades wear well, as one would expect with a $60 eyeshadow palette!

Marc Jacobs Beauty The Lolita (206) Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette

 

Marc Jacobs Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette “The Lolita” Swatches

 

Of the two palettes I purchased, I found “The Starlet” palette to be the better investment. It is an excellent set of seven shadows rich in color, long wearing & crease free (with primer), with fuss-free application.

Marc Jacobs Beauty The Starlet (204) Style Eye-Con No. 7

Marc Jacobs Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette “The Starlet”

Marc Jacobs Beauty The Starlet (204) Style Eye-Con No. 7

Marc Jacobs Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette “The Starlet”: 1)muted taupe with a frosty metallic shimmer, 2) frosted light peachy beige with gold flecks, 3) medium chocolate with golden shimmer 4) frosted metallic copper

Marc Jacobs Beauty The Starlet (204) Style Eye-Con No. 7

 

Marc Jacobs Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette “The Starlet” 4) frosted metallic copper 5) tarnished gold (not nearly as yellow as it appears in the pan) with frosted metallic finish 6) cool toned light silver with metallic finish 7) dark taupe with cool toned silver metallic sheen

Marc Jacobs Beauty The Starlet (204) Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette

Marc Jacobs Style Eye-Con No. 7 Palette “The Starlet” Swatches

Overall, I am pretty happy with my purchases and the quality of the products. Next time I shop Marc Jacobs Beauty, I will be likely to pick up the nail lacquers, and more of the lip products. The Lip Gel really is an A+ lipstick formula for recovering lip gloss addicts like myself!

Urban Decay Naked3 Palette Review & Swatches

Urban Decay Naked3 Palette

Urban Decay’s Naked and Naked Basic palette have been essential to my beauty routine in 2013. This past year I have simplified my routine greatly, but thanks to these two palettes I can create really beautiful neutral looks without dragging out every shadow in my train case. In the past, I have been very skeptical of UD’s new palettes because of their tendency to repeat shades. I completely skipped UD’s Naked 2 palette, because I simply had no need for it, but when I saw that Urban Decay was releasing a palette of 12 completely new rose/pink shades I was intrigued.

Now, I know plenty of people who steer clear of pink shadows, but I for one have always loved a touch of pink eyeshadow. My Fresco Rose paint pot has long been a favorite, and lately I have really been drawn to rose gold, so I thought I would use my Sephora VIB discount to get this palette. The palette features 12 shadows in shades of pink, mauve, rose, and brown, and retails for $52.

The shadows are packaged in a “tin” palette much like that of the Naked 2 palette, and have a “ruffled” appearance to the outer tin. I am typically drawn to smooth and sleek palettes (along the lines of Nars, Bobbi Brown, & even UD’s own Naked Basics case), so I wasn’t wowed by the packaging. Also, unlike the original Naked palette, the Naked3 palette comes with a sample pack of UD primer variations. The palette, does come with a dual ended eye brush. I tested the brush a couple of times, and I was pleased with its initial performance.

Urban Decay Naked3 Palette Packaging

Urban Decay Naked3 Shadows

Strange (pale neutral pink matte-satin)
Dust (pale metallic pink shimmer w/iridescent micro-glitter)
Burnout (light pinky-peach satin)
Limit (light dusty rose matte)
Buzz (metallic rose shimmer w/silver micro-glitter)
Trick (light metallic pinky-copper shimmer w/tonal micro-sparkle)
Nooner (medium pinky-brown matte)

Urban Decay Naked3 Shadows

Liar (medium metallic mauve shimmer)
Factory (pinky-brown satin)
Mugshot (metallic taupe shimmer w/slight pink shift)
Darkside (deep taupe-mauve satin)
Blackheart (smoky black matte w/rosy red micro-sparkle).

Below, you will find swatches on my pale mid-winter skin: 

Urban Decay Naked3 Swatches (Fair Skin)

As you can see, Strange matches my skin tone exactly! It completely blends in, but I expect in the summer this will look really lovely as a soft highlight on me. Now, it is sort of a waste.  Dust I found to be very glitter-y and a bit hard to work with. When used with a bit of M.A.C. Fix + it looked quite pretty. That said, I don’t exactly have time for fussy eyeshadow, so I will probably skip this shade on most days. Trick & Buzz have glitter, but wore much better, and had a higher color pay-off on me. I did experience a bit of fall-out with both, but found the colors to be very pretty. Trick seems to be the most similar to previous UD shades–think a rose gold version of UD’s Chopper. Buzz was unlike anything I own, so I was especially drawn to this shade.

Burnout is a gorgeous light pink/peach shade that goes on so smooth and blends really well. I think this shade really compliments my fair skin tone.  Limit and Nooner are matte shades that went on very smoothly and were very blendable. I can see myself incorporating these into looks quite a bit. Definitely good “basics” to have on hand.

Mugshot & Liar while both beautiful shades, though not exact, are similar to other UD shades. I found Liar to be extremely close to UD’s Toasted (from Naked 1).

I found Factory to be a stunning shimmering brown shade, and expect this one will be in my rotation quite a lot.  I LOVE Blackheart as a shader and Darkside reminds me of an old MAC shadow, “Moth Brown”, that I was obsessed with.

Overall, I think this is one of Urban Decays finer palettes, offering a good range for a variety of skin-tones even for those of us who are ultra- fair.  Urban Decay’s Naked3 Palette can be purchased for $52 at Urban Decay, Sephora, or Ulta.

Simplify Your Makeup: Beautify Using Only FIVE Products!

I have never been one of those girls to wake up an hour earlier to do my hair and makeup. I would much rather sleep a bit more, and walk out my door with minimal makeup and a simple hair style than be a tired glamazon. With a baby and my long commute, this preference has morphed into a necessary reality. Sleep is now a luxury. Hair and makeup is on the back burner, namely because on weekdays I also squeeze in mid-day workouts. Spending an hour on my hair/makeup only to have it ruined a few hours later seems ridiculous, so I sleep, shower, have baby time, and whatever time is left over I dedicate to my hair and makeup.

 Admittedly, I am fortunate that I have hair that dries completely smooth and straight without manipulation. I can easily allow my hair to air dry, braid it, pin it half up, or pin it into a quick bun and be out the door. On the other hand, the makeup department is where I really needed help simplifying.

Makeup is necessary for me, especially mascara since my lashes are as blonde as they come and without it, it looks as though I have no lashes at all! I am a bit of a product whore, and my makeup collection is ridiculously large, so it may be a surprise that I have trained myself to beautify with only 5 products! This is my fail safe look human again routine that gets me out the door on time. These are also great products to throw into a small cosmetics bag to carry with you while traveling (early AM airport calls anyone?) and to the gym for those quick post work-out make overs.

  1. Laura Mercier Illuminating Tinted Moisturizer $43 @ Nordstrom
  2. This is lightweight, making it great for summer, allows for buildable coverage, and has a radiant finish. I love that it has SPF 20 in as well, so I always have a bit of sun protection.

  3. Laura Mercier Mineral Powder $36 @ Nordstrom
  4. I always feel like a need a bit of powder, this gives me a very natural finish when paired with the tinted moisturizer, but can easily be used on its own, so is great to have on hand for touch ups.

  5. Stila Convertible Color $25 @ Nordstrom
  6. I use a bit of this on my cheeks and lips, so I like to stick to pink or coral hues. I also really like the Peony color, for more muted/natural looks.

  7. Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette $27 @ Sephora
  8. This is such a tiny compact, but truly has everything you need in an eyeshadow. I dip the tip of my brush in the darkest color, wet the brush a bit and use as eyeliner. If I am in a huge rush, I sweep the highlight color Venus all over my lid, and put Naked 2 in the crease for a bit of definition.

  9. Maybelline Volum’ Express Falsies Big Eyes Mascara (Double Wanded) $9 at drugstores
  10. I am always in search of the latest great drugstore mascara, and this is my current favorite with great staying power. I love that it is double wanded…so you get the best of both worlds with the thick and thin brushes, so application is a breeze and you have no excuse when you miss a lash (other than your hectic schedule!)

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