Saturday, June 20, 2015

Nail Stamping

In my absence from blogging I developed a new skill...

Nail Stamping!

My manicure game has gone to a whole new level.





Friday, May 29, 2015

Seven Months of Ipsy Glam Bags

Even though I haven't been blogging I was still taking pictures of my monthly Ipsy Glam Bags.


November:


Marc Anthony Oil of Morocco Argan Oil Volume Shine Hairspray, J. Cat Beauty Wonder Lip Paint, Starlooks Gem Eye Pencil, Be A Bombshell Cosmetics Eye Base, and Temptu S/B Highlighter.

Notes: The hairspray is amazing, it smells good and works really well without being heavy or crunchy. I haven't tried the lip paint yet, I'm a little intimidated by it! 


December:


Beauty Without Cruelty A.H.A. 3% Facial Cleanser, Sexy Hair 450° Blow Out Heat Defense Blow Dry Spray Mini, Cailyn Cosmetics Just Mineral Eye Polish, Tarte Delux Lights, Camera, Lashes 4-in-1 Mascara, NYX Cosmetics Butter Lip Balm

Notes: The A.H.A. Facial Cleanser is great! I hated the Butter Lip Balm, it felt and worked great but tasted absolutely disgusting. I shudder just thinking about it.


January:


(Malin+Goetz) Mojito Lip Balm, Pacifica Natural Mineral Coconut Eye Shadow, Coastal Scents Liquid Eyeliner, Elizabeth Mott All Over Shadow Brush, Velvet 59 Lipgloss

Notes: The Mojito Lip Balm is glorious!! I used some of my Ipsy points to get another one. I had never considered spending $12 on lip balm before, but I will definitely be ordering some when I run out. The Velvet 59 lipgloss is also really great. It smells like roses! Oh, and the other side of this bag is white.



February:


Emite Make Up Professional Eye Lash Curler, Eva NYC Up All Night Volumizing Spray, Mitchell and Peach Fine Radiance Face Oil, City Color Cosmetics Creamy Lip Stain, ModelCo BLUSH Cheek Powder.

Notes: The Face Oil leaked all over the rest of the stuff. It's weird, I've used it a couple of times and haven't seen any miracles. They eyelash curlers are great! The lip stain is also weird, it's matte and almost feels gritty. I can't decide if I like it or not. The color is great though!

March:


Boo Boo Cover Up, Pixi by Petra Mesmerizing Mineral Duo, NYX Cosmetics Butter Lipstick, ACURE Day Cream, Pur-Lisse Beauty Pur-Delicate Gentle Soymilk Cleanser & Makeup Remover

Notes: The Butter Lipstick is great and I definitely recommend it! The Day Cream is nice, and has a very pleasant citrus-y smell. I was really excited to try the Boo Boo Cover Up, it's a concealer that is actually good for healing. You can put it right on a gnarly zit and it actually helps it go away while covering it up. The only problem is that I was sent a Medium Shade and it's way too dark on my super pale skin. I might actually buy some of this for myself, but it's $20 so I'll have to save up first.


April:


Mullein & Sparrow Mini Lip & Cheek Tint, Starlooks Satin Finish Lip Gloss, theBalm Cosmetics NUDE Dude Eyeshadow Single, Hikari Cosmetics Blush, Hey Honey Good Morning Honey Silk Facial Serum

Notes: I love the actual bag this month, it's definitely going to be my Summer purse! The lip and cheek tint is a nice lip balm, but so far I've been too scared to put it on my face. The blush is a little darker than I would have picked for myself, but I'm naturally pretty red and don't usually wear much blush.

May:


Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Lip Pencil, Bare Republic Naturals SPF 30 Mineral Face Sunscreen Lotion, Luxie Beauty Tapered Blending Eye Brush 205, BellaPierre Cosmetics Mineral Gel Eyeliner Pencil, Pixi by Petra Beauty Bronzer

Notes: A WATERPROOF EYELINER!! I usually don't wear eyeliner in the Spring and Fall because my allergies leave me with watery eyes. I am SO excited about this! I'm also pretty stoked about the lip pencil. It's clear! That means I can use it with every one of my lipstick shades! I'm not thrilled with the bronzer. It's really shimmery, I think I'll probably be using this as an eye shadow. Even in the Summer, I prefer to rock the pale look. Bronzer isn't really my thing.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Gaia Henna

I've said it before and I'll say it again, I know the coolest people.

My adorable friend Candice is seriously cool.

She is a belly dancer and she does henna art. She's got three kids and a husband, yet she still manages to teach belly dancing, perform, and paint beautiful designs on people! She makes it look easy! (Of course, we all know it's not!)

Part of my Summertime tradition is to visit the Ogden Farmers Market as often as I can and I always stop by and see Candice in her henna tent. If I have the funds I get some henna done for myself. I like to just let Candice do her thing and she's always done something gorgeous.

Candice put up a call on Facebook for volunteers to get free henna if they let her do bridal hands, wrap it properly, and document the first few days for her. She's trying to build up her portfolio and of course I jumped at the chance!

I went over to her house back at the beginning of October and she spent hours painting my hands. When she was done my arms looked like this:


It's traditional in Bridal Henna to hide the groom's name somewhere in the design, you can see that Candice did "Eric" right where my wedding ring goes! 

 To make the design last as long as possible Candice made a concoction of warm lemon juice and sugar, applied it to my arms and hands, then put paper towels down, and wrapped the whole thing in plastic wrap.



I felt like a mummy!

I kept the plastic on all night and the next morning I got to peel all the dried henna paste off to reveal the staining underneath. That part is a lot of fun!

The day I peeled it off it was a little light, but by the next day it had darkened beautifully.





I after that it slowly faded over the next few weeks. I got so many compliments! Everybody thought it was very pretty and really interesting. I'm not one to shy away from conversations with strangers, and having beautifully decorated arms was definitely an ice breaker!

Over Spring Break I took Betty over to see Candice and we both got a little henna. Candice wanted to show us how much darker the henna is on parts of the body with thicker skin, so she did the back of our right hands and the palms of our lefts.

On my right she did a design based on an Art Nouveau enameled brooch.


My left was more traditional.


Betty's right: 



On her left she asked for something "Steampunk" and Candice rose to the occasion! How cool is this?!



Candice's company is called Gaia Henna. She's available all the time, not just at the Farmers Market. You can hire her for parties, bridal showers, or just to have something pretty done. (She does amazing work on pregnant bellies that look great in pregnancy photo shoots!)

For more information you can find Gaia Henna on Facebook and Instagram. Candice is also trying to raise money to get her business off the ground, if you feel like supporting her you can donate here.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Leela

I know it's been a very long time since I posted.

My dog, Leela, died on October 27th.

It was cancer, and it came on very quickly. She was not keeping food down for a few weeks and then the next thing I know the vet is saying there's nothing to be done.

It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do, making the decision to put her down. I guess that means I've had a pretty easy life, but that didn't make it any less heartbreaking.

I couldn't just post normal stuff here without mentioning it somehow, and I am just now able to write about it (or even think about writing it) without turning into a sobbing mess. So here it is, almost seven months later and my blog has been seriously neglected.

Leela was the best. I know everyone thinks their dog is the best, but for me... Leela really was the best.

She was my constant companion for more than five years. She was sweet and calm, and she is missed every single day.

















A few weeks after Leela died I got a rebound dog. Her name is Luna and she's a purebred Maltese. I adopted her through a local animal rescue, Purrfect Pawprints. She's sweet, and she's helped me get through losing Leela. She's almost six years old, and she likes to cuddle. She also likes to poo in the laundry room, but we're working on that.

She's no Leela, but I still like her.






Saturday, October 25, 2014

Opal Nails

October is my favorite month.

Not only is it beautiful, the weather is usually gorgeous, the leaves change color...

It's also the month of my birth, and the month I married my sweetheart!

October's birthstone is the Opal and it's my favorite gemstone. I'd rather look at a beautiful opal than diamonds. As a matter of fact, for my 10th wedding anniversary my husband asked if I wanted a big diamond ring and I told him truthfully that I wanted an opal ring! Since he spoils me rotten, he got me one!

In honor of this fabulous month and its fabulous birthstone, I did opal inspired nails.

Sunlight


Shade


This look was actually pretty labor intensive. I started out by dripping four different colors onto a plastic sandwich bag. I chose pastels: Blue (Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear #481 Breezy Blue), Pink (Wet 'n' Wild Wild Shine #402 Tickled Pink), Green (Essence Color & Go #146 That's What I Mint!), and White to add depth (Pure Ice #1100 Pretty N' Patriotic.)

Then I folded the bag in half and smooshed the colors together. While that dried I painted my nails with my normal base coat, then one coat of OPI Nail Lacquer Happy Anniversary.

Rorschach Test, I see nail polish! This is actually one of two I made. This one was too thin and you can see where it chipped right in the middle. 

When the polish on the bag was dry I peeled it up and put large pieces over my nails like a whole-nail decal. I don't think it was completely dry because it got a little messy around my cuticles. Otherwise it worked great. I trimmed the edges off and used a metal file to clean it all up.

After I got the swirly part on I added one sparse coat of sparkles with Nails Inc. London Special Effects #164 Knightsbridge. I added this one to try to get the "fire" that you can sometimes see in opals.

I finished up with one more coat of Happy Anniversary to top it off and dull down the sparkles. I added the Sally Hansen Big Matte Top Coat to give it the same kind of finish as an actual opal.



I'm pleased with how these nails turned out. They don't really look a lot like opals, but I did some new techniques and the finished result is quite pretty. I liked this so much I think I might challenge myself to trying out a new look every month based on that month's birthstone!


Friday, October 17, 2014

October Ipsy Bag

October's Ipsy bag didn't come in time for my birthday, but it was worth the wait!



Left to right: Épicé International Purifying Exfoliant, ModelCo VOLUMEYES Extreme Black Mascara, Noyah Lipstick in Deeply In Mauve, Ayres Patagonia Body Butter, Nicole by OPI in On A Gilt Trip (an Ipsy Exclusive!).

Two notes about this awesome bag: First of all, I did a little swatch of the nail polish on my thumb and it is spectacular! It's a matte gold that is begging to be an Art Deco, Egyptian, or Christmas design. I am loving this.

Second: The Ayres Patagonia Body Butter is DIVINE!!! It's thick, rich, and smells like an absolute dream. It's jasmine and rosemary, but it's not overwhelming or too floral at all. I'm not even sure how to describe it, but it's wonderful!

I know this is a small post and I haven't blogged in a while. I've got a couple of posts I'm working on and a few more in the tubes! Bear with me, please!

Friday, September 26, 2014

Abstract Autumn Nails

It's still really warm outside, but all anyone can talk about is Autumn.

Pumpkin Spice flavored everything is popping up everywhere. I'm not really a fan. Don't get me wrong, I like pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving dessert. That's just pretty much it for me.

The thing that does excite me is that the mountains are starting to change color. The fall leaves are absolutely one of my favorite things. That is the true sign of Fall.

Autumn is absolutely my favorite season. I was born in the Fall, so was my husband, and we were married in the Fall too. Those dates are all in October.

I love all of it. The cooler weather. The bulky sweaters. Wearing a hat and a scarf with just a jacket. Leggings and tights. Boots! Smelling wood smoke. Rainy days. Halloween. Thanksgiving. Football. There's just so much to love!!

In honor of the beginning of Fall I decided to do a subtle Autumn look.



I didn't want something that screamed "LEAVES AND PUMPKINS!!" I wanted something a little more understated. Since it's so hot, I just wanted a nod to the new season.



I had a really hard time getting the color to show up correctly in the pictures, so I painted some white paper and sent it through my scanner to try and show it properly.

It sort of worked.


The base is Color Club Mod in Manhattan, another one of the gifts from my friend Kristin. I'm pretty sure she got it in one of her Birch Boxes, but if you really like it you can probably find it on Ebay. I'm not really a fan. The color worked perfectly for what I wanted, but the formula was too thick and streaky. It was hard to deal with.

Full sunlight and showing my thumb.

I taped off the square with nail accent tape and then painted on Color Club Put A Pin In It. Still really loving this one. It went on perfectly and looks gorgeous. It's also from Kristin and her Birch Box.

The final dots look black, but they're really a rich bronze brown. They also smell. That's because they're done in Revlon Parfumerie Autumn Spice. They don't smell bad. Just kind of... Autumn spicy.

They look a lot cooler in person than they do in these pictures, and I'm really pleased with how they turned out. Once the leaves really start changing I'm sure I'll have some more Fall looks, but for now this is perfect.