October Playlist

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October is upon us and along with colder weather, crunchy leaves and pumpkin spice everything comes a new monthly playlist. There are a few new releases that excite me greatly (Gerard Way, SBTRKT) along with a few classics and long-time favorites.

Enjoy!

Also, I’m thinking about doing some record reviews (of favorites along with new stuff) in the future, so get excited (maybe?).

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What’s in my bag

Today I’m coming at you with a veritable blogger/vlogger classic – the good old ‘what’s in my bag’-post.

My everyday bag really isn’t anything special (much like all of my bags). It’s black, functional, and pretty simple.

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It’s this little ASOS number that I got at the beginning of the year and aside from really packed days at school (that makes me sound really young, but I’m actually one of the older (oldest?) students traipsing around our college…), it is the perfect size for all of my stuff.

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With me, I carry the essentials: wallet (Monki), keys (keychain from &other Stories), sunglasses, a pen (corresponding notebook not pictured) and a little bag of essentials.

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My sunglasses are relatively old ones from Vans. They were pretty cheap but have proven to be surprisingly durable. I like that they have a bit of interest with the leopard panel on top but are neutral at the same time, so that I can wear them with anything. If I want something ‘fun’, I switch them out for a pair of red Bettsy Johnson frames that I found at T.J. Maxx years and years ago, but since I have to wear my prescription glasses most of the time (and cannot stand contacts), I only whip them out in emergency situations.

My little see-through pouch, which was a gift-with purchase, holds a few beauty products and things like blister plasters, tissues, ibuprofen etc (in the little glittery purse).

I’ve already talked about lip balms here, but other noteworthy beauty helpers include my grapefruit-scented hand sanitizer from The Body Shop, L’Occitane Hand Cream (I think this is the ‘original’ scent, but they do a lot of different ones) and my Caudalie Beauty Elixir, which is a refresher/toner with a lovely herbal fragrance.

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As you can see, I don’t carry too much stuff with me but I think I have all bases covered with my little selection.

PS: Of course I carry a phone with me as well, but since I’m sorely lacking in the DSLR department, I was using it to take these pictures…

Hero Product #3: Sephora Cream Lip Stain

On a trip to Sephora ealier this year, I had to add these beauties to my already overflowing basket. It might have been one of the best decisions (beauty wise) that I have ever made, because the Sephora Cream Lip Stains might just be the longest lasting lip products of all times.

I picked up the two bright mattes in the collection, since the other colors (shimmery purple and brown tones) did not float my boat at all. The ones I picked though, are utter perfection.
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First up is No. 1 Always Red, which is a classic pillar box red that sits comfortably on the lips for hours. I wore this for a family function recently and got so many compliments and surprised looks after it stayed intact all through a delicious four-course meal. So even though application is a bit fussy (the lipgloss-like doe-foot applicator does not provide the most accurate lines), it is my go-to formula for all-day occasions.

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The other color I fell in love with is No. 3 Strawberry Kissed. A brighter, pinker, and warmer tone, this is a perfect summer color that brings life to the face instantly. It is just as smooth and pigmented as its red counterpart and just as much of a showstopper.

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Finally, here are some on-lip swatches of the colors, and even though the application is a (lot) bit slap-dash, I think the vibrancy and finish speaks for itself.

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I couldn’t be more pleased with these lip products, but as I mentioned before, the color selection leaves a bit to be desired. I would love to see a matte fuchsia or orange-y coral in the future, but for now, my lips are all decked out in vibrant brights.

Recently #1

In the past few weeks, I have been getting in full fall mode. Cozying up at night with a good book, marathoning TV shows, hanging out with friends over a glass of wine and enjoying fresh fall produce (I sadly didn’t capture my first – very successful – attempt at pumpkin soup) are all high up on my to-do list.

So here’s a little peek into what I have been doing lately and what I’ve been loving.

 

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetEnjoyed working on my gallery wall. I’ve already ordered some more prints to add to the space, but so far so good!

IMG_2713Still obsessed with my record player (and Nespresso coffee!).

Processed with VSCOcam with t1 presetMy attempts at DIY-ing have been a lot of fun as well. Love these clipboards and how easily I can play around with the display. As a veritable Pinterest-addict (find me here), I’m excited to finally try my hand at some projects from there.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetNothing beats seasonal flavors and I have been all over fresh figs for my breakfast.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetMy recently finished reads. I actually loved all of them (which, as an English lit grad, does not happen a lot). Even Gone Girl was a hit with me, even though I don’t usually like crime novels. I might even check out the movie adaptation that comes out next month.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetSince I go with a rather monochrome wardrobe year-round, the transition to fall has been most apparent in my nailpolish collection. Also, my obsession with Essie polishes (especially since they changed their brushes) is blatantly obvious…

Fall Edit: Nails

I’m the first one to admit that I’m pretty crap at doing my nails. The last step in my routine is never topcoat, but damage control. I smudge, smear and chip, but that doesn’t keep my from buying new polishes like there’s no tomorrow.

Since my slapdash mode of application really does test a product, I actually have found a three-product-process that seems to work.

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First off is basecoat, and for this I like to use the Orly Bonder.

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It is dubbed a ‘rubberized basecoat’, which basically means that I provides a textured base that he nailpolish can cling to easily. From what I have experienced, this really helps with keeping chipping at bay, so I would totally recommend it.

For color, I chose Essie’s Bahama Mama. This is a new one to my collection (even though it has been part of their drugstore offering for a while now), and while I don’t think it is very aptly named, it is a gorgeous color for fall. A warm, dark pinkish purple, this really stands out on the nails and goes great with cozy knits and thicker coats.

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The formula is great (as per usual) and the brush is wonderfully wide, which makes application super quick and efficient.

Finally, I tried something now on top – the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Top Coat.

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Sally Hansen is still pretty hard to come by around these parts, but when I saw this at the drugstore, I knew I had to try it out.

I’m not one for matte nails, so I do appreciate the high shine finish this gives, but drying time is really were it’s at here. I painted my nails with this combo right before sitting down to churn out this post and as I’m typing, they are completely dry to the touch. I haven’t been able to test out the longevity of both the color and the topcoat, but so far, I’m impressed.

Favorites: Lip Balms

If there’s one thing I am completely addicted to, it’s lip balms. I have perpetually dry and cracked lips, so taking care of them and adding some hydration is a key step in my routine.

Obviously, I have tried a lot of lip balms in my time,  but the four below are (as of now) my ultimate favorites. There’s something for every occasion, so lets get started.

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Nuxe Reve De Miel

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This is by far my top pick for chapped lips. It is a really thick and moisturizing balm that sits matte on the lips. The formula makes it perfect for use under lipsticks as there is no shine that interferes with the lipstick finish, but it really shines (haha – see what I did there…) as an overnight treatment. The smell is also heavenly. Slightly sweet because of the honey, there’s also a distinctive citrus tinge to it that makes it absolutely delicious. If you have problems with seriously chapped and sore lips (especially in the coming colder months), I would highly recommend this little gem. (PS: I’ve tried the stick form of this as well and wasn’t impressed at all – go with the tub!!!)

 

Aesop Rosehip Seed Lip Cream

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This little tube sits at the opposite end of the  formula spectrum. It is a light cream, similar to a moisturizer, but it really packs a punch in terms of hydration. Because it sinks in super quickly, the lip cream is also a great product to use under any colored lip products. The only thing that slightly annoys me is that it does not smell (to me) of rosehip seeds at all. In fact, the only thing I can detect is sage, which isn’t even an ingredient  – weird. But aside from that, the Aesop offering is a wonderful option for day to day use.

 

Smith’s Rosebud Salve

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The Rosebud Salve is a real cult classic that I first discovered when I lived in the US. This is actually my second pot of the stuff and I have used the squeezy tube version as well (didn’t like it as much though). Formula-wise, it definitely is lighter than the Reve de Miel, but still moisturizes very well. It is shiny though, so it makes for a more glossy look on the lips. Here, we also get the yummy rose scent that the Aesop cream is lacking. The salve great for moisturizing the cuticles as well, so it is a real multi-use product and a firm staple in my collection.

 

Burt’s Bees Honey Lip Balm

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The most handbag-friendly and affordable product of the bunch, I really do love this stick for on-the-go lip hydration. The honey scent is super yummy and it glides over the lips without leaving a waxy film. As much as I like the Aesop cream, this is much more convenient to apply and makes for a mess-free lip product. I really can’t say enough good things about this lip balm, and since there are a ton of flavors available, there certainly is one for everybody.

The Splurge: By Terry Ombre Blackstar

By Terry is a brand that has caught my attention since it first made its rounds around the beauty blogs and YouTube. Weirdly named products in luxe packaging and reviews that had a general tone of ‘over the moon’-goodness. 

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So when I went to Sephora a few months ago, I couldn’t help myself but snoop around the counter and treat myself to one of their cream eyeshadow sticks – the By Terry Ombre Blackstar in No. 5 Misty Rock. My wallet wept that day, but this pretty little stick seriously delivered. A taupe-y purple with obvious shimmer, this color is not something that I usually wear, but when I first applied it, I swear a heard a few angels singing.

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It is a creamy formula, which makes blending super easy, but it soon sets to a more budge-proof shadow that will last all day. For everyday wear, I like to blend this along my lashline over a skin-colored matte powder shadow, which makes for a lovely subtle pop of color and sparkle. But if you want to go all out, I suggest sweeping this all over the lid and blending it out with a darker matte powder for a smokey eye.

I am seriously tempted to pick up a few more shades of these, because even though they are expensive, I cannot fault these sticks. In the past, I haven’t had much luck with cream eyeshadows since the formula always seems too thick and gloopy – especially if they come in pot-form -but I can honestly say that the By Terry offering has won me over completely.