Tuesday, June 24, 2014

My Favorite New Products

Dear Marleigh,

I have yet to do a real beauty post so I figured it is about time. I have a line up of products I have gotten recently and have used long  enough to know that I love them and can give proper reviews. I am going to post myself sans-makeup (Gasp!) and guide you through my basic routine as well as showcase the new products and where to get them. I am not receiving any compensation for my reviews, just want to put my tested and true opinions of these products out there. 

Lets start off with my pre-makeup cleanser, I have recently become obsessed with Olay products as my mom uses them and turned me onto how great they truly work. I have acne prone skin and my new combo of products has helped clear me up quite a bit. 

I love the Olay Fresh Effects Out of This Swirled Deep Pore Exfoliating Scrub (Thats a mouth full!) I use it everyday and night but every three days I use it with my new OlayPro-X Advanced Cleansing System Spin Brush, it came with its own exfoliant scrub but I used that up quickly so the Fresh Effects is a nice replacement. I also bought a box of replacement spin brush heads and use one to wash and then one to buff in the Olay Professional Pro-X Age Repair Lotion with SPF 30 that came with the spin brush. It really helps get rid of any flakey-ness or dry skin left behind from picking at my acne (I know, I know, but I can't help it)

Here is myself after cleansing and without any makeup, I feel very venerable without my makeup, as I have been wearing it since I was 13 to cover my skin issues. I'm pretty clear right now other than the bad scarring I have under my lower lip from a recent breakout.

After I let my Age Repair Lotion Dry for a bit I bust out my number one favorite new product, which I believe is the KEY to helping reduce my number of breakouts. If I don't use it every morning and night I literally can feel the breakouts forming. 

This is my TapRoot Farms 100% Natural Moroccan Argan Oil. There is a lot of hype about Moroccan Argan Oils but after doing tons of research I believe the oil only works in its pure form, the stuff you buy at Walmart has other additives no matter if the bottle says "Natural" or not. TapRoot Farms is a company based out of Alaska and I have it shipped to Michigan, and for $14 it is the cheapest 100% Natural Moroccan Argan oil I have found to-date. 

I put one pump in the palm of my hand and dot it on my forehead, cheeks, nose, chin and under my eyes and rub it in really well. It absorbs much quicker than the coconut oil I have previously used. You can barely see it in my hand because it is so pure. 

I typically go blow dry my hair at this point so the oil has plenty of time to fully absorb, and after that I use a basic skin primer so my new Bare Minerals Bare Skin Serum Foundation really sticks. This is Bare Minerals newest beauty innovation as it is 100% natural and their first liquid foundation in the 20 years Bare Minerals has been around. I have always used their powder foundation so I knew I had to give it a try.
Now, let me start off by saying, YOU MUST BUY THE 
PERFECTING FACE BRUSH that was made specifically for this foundation. Trust me, I took my makeup to my moms house one night and her Chihuahua, Zeek, stole my brush and hid it. I spent the next two weeks trying to perfect the application with other brushes and beauty blenders to no avail. It always looked streaky and gross without the brush to really blend it in. Luckily, my mom found the brush and all is well again.  

The brush has a little reservoir pit that holds the serum perfectly. Shake well (This is VERY important, as there are no binders in this serum to hold the ingredients together), your application will be streaky if you don't. 
The best thing about this new serum is you can decide how much coverage you need. Bare Minerals suggests 2 drops for sheer coverage, 4 drops for medium coverage and 6 drops for full coverage. 
I start off with one drop per area of my face, totaling 3-4 drops. 1 drop for the left cheek area, 1 drop for the right cheek area, 1 drop for my forehead/nose and sometimes 1 additional drop for my chin/neck if I need more coverage. 
Buff each drop into your skin in a circular motion until you get the desired finish you like. 
It really looks like bare skin, just better! I sometimes use some of my powder Bare Minerals Foundation to cover problem areas but that is rarely needed and I finish it off with my homemade version of mineral veil (Cornstarch and powder foundation for color),because my skin gets oily at times. 

I'm not going to take you through the rest of my routine (filling in eyebrows, eyeshadow, mascara, etc. because you get the idea). But i am going to move onto my new favorite red lipstick. MAC Ruby Woo is MACs most raved about red lipstick because not only is it a matte color, but it looks great on just about any skin tone. 
Now, I am cheap, I mean I don't ever spend a lot on lipsticks because they are just going to be kissed off if you know what I mean (; so spending $16 on lipstick about killed me, I wasn't going to spend $13 more on a lip pencil to match, after doing some research I found that NYX Hot Red Lip Pencil is a close match for only $3.49. SOLD!
I like to line my lips just a bit out of my natural lip line so my lips look a bit fuller but not overdone.
Because this lipstick is matte, it does get a bit dry on the lips so I put any regular Chapstick over it to keep my lips a bit moist without effecting the matte-ness of it, but if you like I'm sure a clear gloss would give Ruby Woo a nice look as well. 
Finished product! Hope this is helpful in deciding what new products to try out, I know you won't be sorry! If you want to purchase any of the products I have reviewed here there are links directly to where to them purchase online throughout the post. What new products have you tried and loved lately? Let me know!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Master Bedroom Inspiration Board

Dear Marleigh,

As of late, I have a HUGE obsession (you have no idea) with the navy and gold combo/trend. Nate Berkus is one of my favorite designers and he had a navy and gold collection at target recently, thus adding to my obsession. I love gold anything so thats a given but when I came across these awesome white and navy lampshades (See inspiration board) I finally decided on the theme for our Master Bedroom. It is the perfect combo of masculine for Scott and glam for me (:

I have had the crowns for a while, I purchased them at Hobby Lobby over a year ago. They will hang above our bed, and I'm going to find an empty frame and put the "T" in the frame in between both crowns. I might get a vinyl sticker like "Always Kiss Me Goodnight" to go under all of it but I think I may keep it simple. 

The compass knob is for the antique desk-turned nightstands i'm currently working on. My awesome stepdad, Greg, just finished sawing the tops perfectly for me and I should be done with that redo in a couple weeks. 

I haven't decided on pillows yet for the bed, but if you look at the inspiration board you can see how I plan to style the bed. I bought a gold quilt at this awesome new store in town called "At Home" if you happen to live near one of these stores you MUST check it out. Awesome prices and really cool stuff. I got a king size quilt for $30! I will be doing navy sheets, I prefer white like the picture but my lovely husband is a mechanic and is never truly clean. I'm on the hunt for a white down-alternative comforter, something I can bleach the heck out of if he gets it dirty.  

You met my gold and white striped chest yesterday, I will be adding a DIY tufted bench seat to the top of that for the foot of our bed. I also will be making a matching tufted wing headboard with gold nail-heads. I plan to use a canvas drop cloth for the fabric on both the bench and headboard, because it is cheap and the perfect color I'm looking for.

I'm in the process of painting a wing-back chair as well, that may or may not find a place in our bedroom if I have the room, I guess we will see! Thank you for checking out my vision for my newest decor obsession, reveal coming soon :)

Lampshade - Target
Compass Knob - Hobby Lobby
Metal "T" - Hobby Lobby
King & Queen Crown - Hobby Lobby (I don't think they are available online)
Rest of the Photos - Pinterest

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Paint Perfect Stripes

Dear Marleigh,

Grandpa Bob died of Cancer in 1996 when I was 6 years old. He was the greatest guy in the world, my mom always tells me the story about how she woke up in her hospital room the day after I was born, Grandpa Bob had called into work and was sitting in the corner of the room, holding and just staring at me. He called my cousins and I his "Sweethearts" and I wish everyday that I could have had the pleasure of getting to know him better. 

Alway, I have a large chest that he built before I was born to hold motocross gear (He owned a motocross shop and my dad and uncle still ride to this day). I hold this chest dear to my heart just because he built it, and it has moved with me from place to place over the years. I have always used it to store blankets and sheets at the foot of my bed. While I love the chest and its familiar yet unknown scent inside, it was time for a facelift as I'm in the process of decorating our bedroom with my newest obsession: Navy and Gold (:
*Inspiration Board Coming Soon*

I decided it needed some fun, so why not Gold stripes? I sanded the box down as well as I could, but left some of the damage to give it some character. I started out by painting it the same white color I painted the steamer trunk with my DIY chalk paint. I decided to make the stripes the same height as the top lip of the trunk and taped off my lines with frog tape. I made sure to press the tape down firmly with a gift card.

After taping off my stripes I sealed the lines with a coat of my base color, this is the key to perfect stripes every time!


I let that dry for 24 hours, It is not necessary to let it dry that long with the chalk paint but I did it just to be sure. I used Gold Leaf Rub-N-Buff and rubbed it on with my finger to get an even coat. I did the second coat with a cut up t-shirt to really buff it in.

Normally, if you are using paint you peel the tape off while the paint is still wet, but Rub-N-Buff dries pretty quickly. You want to peel off the tape when your paint is tacky enough to stick without it running but not hard enough to tear off with the tape. Remove the tape slowly and at a 90 degree angle. I had to touch up a few places where the tape ripped up my base color a little bit, so the slower the better. Here is the final striped chest:

It looks great so far, I love it! I plan to make a tufted bench seat for the top of it but that is a little down the road, I will of course post the tutorial when it is completely finished. I know Grandpa Bob would be proud of how crafty I am and appreciate every ounce of love I put into each one of my projects :') 

Project Cost Breakdown:
Chest - Free
White Paint, Already on hand - Free
Roll of Frog Tape - $6
Gold Leaf Rub-N-Buff - $5
 Total: $11