Friday, March 28, 2014

Spring Has Sprung

It seems like all I’ve done since November is bitch about how cold I am all the time. Now that spring is officially here, I remember why I’m always so excited when autumn rolls around. 

There is pollen everywhere. I have to dodge bees (allergic) and wasps (they terrify me) every time I step outside. And… I hate the clothes. 

There, I’ve said it. I hate spring and summer fashions with the flaming passion of a thousand suns. They just look stupid on me. Halter dresses and mini skirts are made for Amazonian women with long, bronzed legs and flowing, beachy hair. In other words, my physical opposite. 

I am short and pale — I burn so easily that I’m forced to wear heavy-duty sunblock and a hat on long car trips lest I emerge from the vehicle resembling a lobster — so the micro-minis and sleeveless tops I see gals sporting on fashion blogs are not for me. 

I know it’s a cliché to be that girl with a closet full of clothes wailing that she has nothing to wear, but when it comes to spring and summer clothes? I really kind of… don’t. 

I found some cute outfit inspiration on Girlshue, but I’m not sold. I always feel like I look silly in warmer weather attire. 

What are your seasonal go-tos?

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Why People In Alabama Still Smoke

...and it's not always because they want to!

I used to be a chain-smoker, but now I smoke Blu e-cigarettes. While driving through Alabama today, I almost caved in and bought a pack of cigarettes.

Not because I craved one so badly, mind you, but because it took stopping at five different curb stores before I found one that carried my Blu cartridges! 

Dear Alabama, 
Stock Blu cigarettes at all of your gas stations. When I have an easier time finding something in Mississippi? Something is screwy about your selection.


You Don’t Want To Deal With Me When I’m Having A Nic Fit

Monday, March 24, 2014

Isabel Toledo for Lane Bryant!

Good news for plus size ladies! Isabel Toledo (whose designs have been worn by Michelle Obama… at the inauguration, no less!) has a collection at Lane Bryant. 

The most common complaint I hear from curvier gals is “everything in Lane Bryant is a floral tent or a box!” Toledo’s pieces? Not so much. As someone who’s shopped in the plus size department at one point in life (I was a size 16 when I was 14 years old), it always makes me happy to see mainstream designers branching out, especially with such adorable offerings.

(source: Lane Bryant)

Friday, March 21, 2014

Gone, Baby, Gone (Empties #4)

It’s that time again. After hoarding empty containers until they’ve begun to take up entirely too much space in the bathroom, I’ve accumulated enough to justify an empties post! Thank God. Seriously, tripping over empty bottles because they’re so lightweight they topple over in the shower is a huge pain in the ass, but I ran out of storage spots! #bloggerproblems

1.) Simple Moisturizing Facial Wash: I’ve heard lots of good things about Simple products, and as someone with sensitive skin, I really love the idea of the line. Simple products are free of dyes, fragrances, and alcohols, but while the cleanser was extremely gentle, it did absolutely nothing. I know it’s “conventional wisdom” that cleansers can’t do anything because they’re not on the skin long enough, but I don’t find that to be true. Why else would we react to certain cleansers? Why would some products make our skin glow? But I digress… It’s okay; I managed to use it up in the shower, but it’s not the wonder product I thought it would be.

2.) Tigi Bed Head Urban Anti-Dotes Resurrection Shampoo & Conditioner: These monster tubes lasted for over six months. Six months. I bought them while I was still trying to repair my hair after the Great Bleaching Incident. and they really did the trick. As they were finishing up, I noticed my hair was falling flat and getting oily faster. Success! I had resurrected my hair enough that these heavy-duty moisturizers were too rich. That’s always a good thing. If you’ve destroyed your hair — or it’s brittle naturally — give these a go.

3.) La Roche-Posay Anthelios 60: What can I say about this sunscreen? I have no complaints. None. It has a milky consistency that’s easy to blend, so there’s no white cast. (Not that anyone would notice on me!) It isn’t too heavy, too shiny, or too thick, and it never caused me to break out. 

4.) Trader Joe’s Micellar Cleanser: Yeah, yeah, yeah, cleansing cloths are the devil. I bought these while traveling because I didn’t have any eye makeup remover with me, and they do the job. They don’t sting the eyes, cause breakouts, or leave behind that weird, greasy film some cleansing cloths do. 

5.) Glade Cashmere Woods: I have cats, so there is a litter box in my bathroom. I want to cover the odor, but I don’t like flowery scents as a general rule.This spray masked the litter box smell without, you know, making the bathroom smell like flowers and poop. Is that TMI? My cats probably would rather not have me discuss their business…

6.) Jolen Creme Bleach: I had a small, random patch of jet black hair at the front of my hairline, so when I was a paler strawberry and honey blonde last year, I’d mix a tiny dollop of this up to pre-lighten the black strands. I’m no longer living in a delusional world in which I can rock Gwen Stefani hair, but that’s fine since the cream has all dried up. Also? That black patch has turned white.

7.) Sundown Naturals Adult Multivitamin: They’re vitamins. You don’t feel them working at the time, but they help in the long run. These gummis tasted delicious, so I actually remembered to take my vitamins since I enjoyed them.

8.) Excedrin Migraine: I live off this stuff. I have chronic migraines, and if not for the marvel that is this drug, I would literally be nonfunctional at least once a week. These make the difference between having to hide under the covers, shades down, all lights off, cotton jammed in my ears, and being able to go about my daily tasks. I stockpile it now because I was so traumatized when it was off the market.

9.) MyChelle Sun Shield SPF 28: This doesn’t have nearly enough SPF for me on a daily basis, but on days when it’s pouring down rain and I’m outside for a grand total of ten minutes, it’s fine. It’s thicker than the La Roche-Posay and can leave a tackiness to the skin if not properly blended, but it doesn’t cause breakouts or interfere with makeup application.

10.) Lancome Bi-Facil: You know you love a product when the loss of even one use makes you sad. Teeny knocked the bottle into the sink while the cap was off, spilling the last few drops. Even though there was only enough to use one more time, I was momentarily crushed. It’s the best eye makeup remover ever. I honestly don’t know how long I’ve had the bottle — that’s how long-lasting it is, and I wear mascara five days a week. It removes everything without feeling greasy and never stings.

11.) Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair: This has already been featured on at least one Hits list that I know of, possibly more. It’s one of those cult products well-known for clearing up breakups faster, even healing minor wounds. When one of my babies clawed my nose with her razor-sharp demon talons, I mixed this with Neosporin, and a wound I was told (by a doctor, no less) would be visible for two months healed in two weeks. Two weeks. To be honest, I do have a Wolverine-esque healing factor as far as wounds go. I’m sure that helped.

12.) Nivea Olive Oil & Lemon: I am a lip balm junkie. I keep two in the nightstand drawer, several in the bathroom, and I currently have three in my bag. This is one of the best I’ve ever tried. It’s nourishing without feeling heavy or tacky, and it doesn’t taste funny. I’d buy it again… but I need to get through the other six lip balms I have.

13.) L’Oréal Voluminous Butterfly: Seriously scary brush. Seriously awesome mascara. Once I got the hang of using it, it gave me major lashes in a snap. The only problem is that it goes gloopy very quickly. I got maybe a month and a half out of it before it just didn’t work even after I ran it under hot water. Maybe I’d used it all? If that’s the case, there’s not enough product in here to justify the $8.99 price tag when a cheaper tube will last a full three months. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Do Not Want! Wednesday

I was trolling the Free People website looking at their latest offerings when I saw something that literally caused me to do a double take. And not in a good way. These jeans. These jeans are $315. Yes, you’re reading that correctly. Three hundred fifteen dollars. For a pair of unflattering, slouchy jeans by a designer I have never heard of in my life. 

Are they made in a vat of unicorn tears? Are the fibers blessed by Tibetan monks before they’re shipped to a distribution center? I just don’t see a single thing about these jeans that makes them worth the price tag. 

Obviously, to each their own, but I don’t like my jeans to be designed. I want jeans to be jeans. End of discussion. They are meant to be comfortable, durable, and versatile. I don’t need them to make me breakfast in bed, which is what I would expect if I ever paid $315 for a pair of dumpy jeans. 

Am I being overly judgmental? Is there something about them that makes them worth the cost? 

Monday, March 17, 2014

On Suicide

Earlier today, visionary designer and longtime girlfriend of Mick Jagger, L’Wren Scott, was found dead in her apartment of an apparent suicide. She was 47 years old. 

At this point, the reason she ended her life is only speculation, but the most likely cause is depression. Anyone who has ever been severely depressed has probably heard one or more (or even all) of the following: “you don’t have any reason to be depressed,” “you need to adjust your attitude,” and there’s always my personal favorite, “get over it.” 

People suffer depression for different reasons. Sometimes it’s situational, and a change of scenery or spending time doing things you enjoy is all that’s needed to turn over a new leaf. Sometimes it’s chemical; a prescription anti-depressant or even over-the-counter St. John’s Wort can work wonders.

But what happens when you no longer enjoy doing anything? What happens to those who don’t have the emotional support or financial resources necessary to find help?

In the past, many of those people fell by the wayside, but today we have more options. 

If you feel despondent, if you believe life isn’t worth living anymore, please go to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website. There’s a phone number you can call, or if you don’t want to talk on the phone, there’s a chat feature. It’s free, and these people are not there to judge you — they’re there to help.

Those of you reading this who have depressed friends or family, telling them to “pull themselves up by their bootstraps” will not help. “Tough love” won’t make it better. All it does is send the message that you don’t care what happens to them. “In my generation, people just drank” is not sage advice from days gone by. Just stop and think, “If I felt worthless, what would I want someone to say to me?”

And if you wouldn’t want to hear it? Don’t say it. Please click here and read this page for guidance. 

Every single day, roughly two thousand people end their lives for one reason or another. One of those reasons is that they feel they have no one to talk to. Everyone deserves to have someone to talk to, so to anyone reading this: if you need someone to talk to and don't want to use the helpline, my e-mail address is listed in my bio. And if anonymity is more to your taste, leave a comment below. 

Happy St. Patrick's Day, everyone. Be safe.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Spring Is In The Air

My uncle’s Italian-food-laden birthday party brings to you… more slightly tipsy posting from my phone! Yay! 

I have a vacation coming up, and with the weather finally warming up, I’m on a hunt for cute spring/summer clothes that are beach friendly. This dress (from Zara, of course) caught my eye. 

Oddly enough, yellow used to be one of my least favorite colors. Now I love it thanks to a super-sweet sales assistant in Gap who literally chased after me brandishing a yellow sweater insisting that I put down the clichéd green sweater every redhead in the world owned in favor of saffron. 

My dad approved, and he’s always the first to tell me when something “looks like shit.” (We don’t mince words in my family!) What are you eyeing up for spring?

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Wednesday Wants #6

I feel like death, but when I say I’m going to do something, I like to stick to it. I have said I will blog every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and so I shall!

I tried a sample of Bumble and Bumble’s Bb. Straight last night after my shower (because I am of a mind that no matter how lousy I feel, I will only feel worse if I’m greasy) and honestly didn’t see a drastic improvement to my normal blow-out. Then I fell asleep for roughly sixteen hours, waking occasionally in the grips of fever to pile every cover I own onto my person or kick them all off, depending on whether I was hot or cold. When I went into the bathroom and saw my hair for the first time, I was amazed

Instead of being matted to my hair from feverish tossing and turning, it was perfectly smooth, perfectly straight, and perfectly clean. Not even my bangs looked oily, and I normally wake up with them clinging to my forehead and in need of a spritz of dry shampoo. I need this in my life. I think I’m going to order it right now so that when my sample runs out, I’ll have the full size product waiting for me. 

Monday, March 10, 2014

Help! I Can't Decorate!

this is super cute
I’m in the process of decorating my room. My new comforter is celery green, and all the furniture in my room is white — the bed is white wrought iron, the built-in desk and cabinets a classic style, and my nightstand is French country. When it’s not a horrific mess (I have birthday presents in boxes stacked on my desk waiting to be shipped; you know who you are, and I swear your presents will be mailed this week!) I’ll take pictures.

The great thing is that it’s a blank canvas. I can do anything! The problem is that it’s a blank canvas, and with endless possibilities comes endless confusion. I’m thinking of hanging a few storage-type things so I can keep some of the clutter off my desk, but I just don’t know. Design aficionados, lend me your talents! 

Friday, March 7, 2014

Purple Rain

Guys, I couldn't not use a Prince song for the title. Seriously.

Kelly Osbourne has been rocking lavender hair for a few years now, and I have to say I can’t picture her as normal without her abnormal hair color. It’s just part of who she is, and I give her major props for sticking to her pastel-hued guns in the face of critics. 

Now Nicole Richie and Ireland Baldwin have joined the purple-haired club. (Hey, why not? They’re already members of the “I’m famous because my parents are” club!)

Ahem. But I digress. I’ve had brown hair, black hair, platinum blonde hair, various shades of red, fuchsia, and pink, but I have never gone lavender. The new trend — and the fast approaching spring season — kind of makes me want to.

I probably won’t just because my hair is finally healthy again, and I don’t want to bleach it again, which would be necessary. Still, I find myself dreaming of looking like an Easter egg. Does anybody else feel the need to restraint themselves from placing a Manic Panic order, or is it just me?

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

February Hits and Hell Noes

February was a pretty big month for me, what with it being my birthday. It was also the month when I finally got my ass in gear and reached a pretty big decision concerning the direction my life will take. So it’s probably going to be surprising that my Hits list for this month is extremely pared down, and I think one or two of the products have been on other Hits lists. Oops? I like what I like!

1.) MAC Pro-Longwear Paint Pot in Painterly: Have I bitched often enough about my oily eyelids yet? Tough, ‘cause here I go again. Even when I have dry flakes all over my face, my lids look like disco balls. It’s gross. This is one of the most hyped products MAC has to offer, and now that I have it (I found it for $7.50 on Amazon!), I totally understand why. I’m gonna be honest; it did not keep my eyeshadow crease-proof for eight hours. But I have partially hooded eyes, so that’s just not in the cards for me. It did keep the color bright in spite of the creasing as well as concealed my creepy, bright blue veins as no other primer ever has. It’s well worth the normal cost ($20) since it’s going to last forever, and it was a total steal at under $8. Seriously, go check on Amazon. I’ll wait. 

2.) Clarisonic Acne Daily Clarifying Cleanser: I had my, you know, monthly guest during my birthday week (figures), so I was a hot mess of pimples, shiny skin, and had a general pallor of yuck going on. This cleanser helped to combat the breakouts without causing any rosacea breakouts. That’s always a win-win situation. I’m breaking out yet again (dear God, why?!), so I’ve retrieved this baby from my stash and put it back to work. I’m already seeing improvements. 

3.) Maybelline Volum'Express The Rocket Mascara: Okay, Maybelline, let’s be frank. Did your R&D team sell their souls to the Devil for the ability to create one kick-ass mascara after another? Because it’s like every formula I try, I love more than the one before it. It’s blacker than coal, lengthens and adds volume, all without being clumpy, spidery, or flakey. I highly recommend this to everyone.

4.) Laura Geller Love Me Dew in Watermelon Cooler*: This is essentially a tinted lip balm for grown-ups. It applies smoothly, and because it is so moisturizing, the color payoff is a very sheer version of the hot coraly-pink at the end of the tube. For a moisturizing lip product, it’s surprisingly long lasting. After I finished my coffee the other day, the sheen had worn off, leaving a semi-matte stain behind. I have three colors, but Watermelon Cooler is the one I reach for most often. It’s just the prettiest color that would look good on anyone.

5.) MAC All That Glitters Eyeshadow*: I’ve become unbelievably lazy with my makeup, so my go-to eye look is just a sweep of a single color, occasionally eyeliner, mascara, and that’s that. All That Glitters is a soft golden shade filled with, well, glitter. But don’t shudder and pass it up without trying it! It’s the softest glittery formula known to mankind. It translates as a warm, subtle sparkle rather than making you look like Edward Cullen in the midday sun.

6.) Burberry Beauty Lip Cover in Tulip Pink*: I am 99.999% sure I’ve babbled incoherently about my love for this lipstick at least once before, but I’ve been wearing it a lot (again) during all of February and the first few days of March. If I haven’t been wearing the Laura Geller, I’ve been wearing this. Sometimes I’ll rotate them out in the same day. It’s the most perfect pinky nude, which is almost impossible to find when you’re as fair as I am. It’s non-drying, lasts pretty well (I have to reapply after eating, but that’s most lipsticks), and never cakes or settles into dry patches.

And now… the Hell Noes!

1.) Ms. Manicure Nail Clippers: Words cannot express how pissed off I am at these little bitches. I’d managed to get some length on my nails. They were healthy. They weren’t splitting. I actually had to trim them because they were interfering with my iPhone use. #firstworldproblems I went to trim the first nail, and the clippers somehow managed to splinter it down to the quick, meaning I had to cut the rest off to avoid looking like an idiot with one stub and nine longish nails. Never buy these. If you find them in your bathroom, kill them with fire!

2.) Bare Escentuals Big Tease Mascara*: This one was a hard call. I couldn’t decide whether it was a Hit or a Hell No because it did work. It lengthened my lashes and made them extremely black. It looked beautiful on and didn’t flake. The problem is the wand. Because of the way the bristles are spaced, all in a column on one side of the brush, it took me close to ten minutes to apply mascara. That’s how long it takes me to do my makeup from start to finish! I just don’t have time for that every day. So that’s a no from me. I don’t want it to die in a fire, but it’s just impractical.

Monday, March 3, 2014

What's To Come + The Big Announcement

My birthday was February 23, yay! So I will soon be doing a birthday haul (not to brag! I repeat, not to brag, but because we gals are nosy and like knowing these things), but the bulk of my gifts are still not here. I’m also planning to do my February favorites, but I’m so torn on one product that I don’t know whether to list it as a Hit or a Hell No just yet. We shall see. 

And now for the big news. As some of you may know, I’ve been in college (occasionally) off and (mostly) on since I was 18. I have changed my major numerous times, accumulated enough hours that I could earn several BAs if I wanted to spend the time/money on it, and always derailed my own train when I came close to graduation. 

My problem? I studied social sciences and arts, and there are just no jobs in those fields right now. My cousin, a stupendously gifted journalist, recently lost his job when the entire paper he worked for shut down. With such slim pickings for BA candidates, I have decided to turn my affinity for beauty into a paying job.

I’m going to go to cosmetology school. It’s a creative field, so the job is one I will enjoy, and there are, you know, jobs out there. I’ve yet to find a school, but I plan on blogging about it once I start classes. 

So that’s that. I feel much calmer now that I’ve finally settled on something. I’m looking forward to turning over a new leaf and documenting the journey as I go. It took me a long time to figure things out, but, hey, in the words of Oscar Wilde, “It is because Humanity has never known where it was going that it has been able to find its way.”