Thursday, July 26, 2012

Checking in

I know, I know, I'm a slacker.  I promised a post heavy week, then dropped off after Wednesday.  The truth is, I really enjoyed being on vacation, like really.  My days probably seemed boring to most, but I could have easily done it for another week.  Or two.  I would get up, workout, then spend the day relaxing, laying in the sun, or watching DVDs that I never get a chance to watch otherwise.  I cooked a lot, went to a few zumba classes and took naps.  It was my perfect week.
Jake liked having someone to nap with

  Friday was the exception, I spelt the day shopping with my sister in law, and boy did we shop.  I picked her up at 9:30 in the morning and it was a little after 8 when I deposited her back home.  We hit up the outlet mall a little over an hour away in Aurora, then the Crate and Barrel outlet, finishing up at Ikea.  We got some great deals, and even did a little but of early Christmas shopping. (I am by no means liking forward to winter, but I can't pass up a good deal either)  My deal of the day was a sweet Kate Spade purse for $78.  Gotta love outlet prices! 

I've been busy playing catch up at work, but I promise there are posts coming! Look for reviews on my Clarisonic Mia, and Benefit skincare coming soon!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

My Ulta haul

As I've mentioned before, I'm very lucky to have a friend who gifts me with Ulta Friends and Family coupons.  They usually come out every quarter, and I send them all over to my friends and family (like how that works?)  Her husband gets credit for people using them, so they're very generous with them.  The current discount days started yesterday, so I wasted no time heading to my local Ulta.  Here's what I bought on what I'm sure was only my first of many trips there this week:

First is the Pureology.
Pureology is the best thing I've ever done for my hair.It's expensive yes, but I can honestly say it's worth it.  That's Strengthening Control on the left, then Incharge, and Hydrate Shampoo.  It's all for color treated hair.  The hairspray isn't sticky or crunchy, and the shampoo leaves my hair super soft, not dry.  Regular price on these items are $9, $20, and $60.  That's a liter of shampoo, the smaller size is $28.

Next up, Redken Extreme Conditioner
I use this as a much cheaper alternative to Pureology.  I only use a tiny bit and it works wonders.  I'm not usually a fan of Redken, I always feel like it leaves a film behind on my hair which is why I only use about a dime size of this.  I use a purifying shampoo about once a week and it leaves my hair really dry, but if I follow it up with Extreme it feels just as soft as my regular shampoo.  Regular price is $33 for the liter.

I grabbed this shampoo just to try it because honestly, I liked the bottle.
Rusk Sensories Wellness shampoo in "heal".  Claims to restore and strengthen damaged, dry hair.  It has organic ingredients, and is 100% harsh chemical free.  It smells nice, but if I don't like it I have no problem returning it. $19.95 for 13.5oz.

I've been looking for a moisturizer with spf, so in comes Benefit.
The girl told me she really likes the Triple Performing Facial Emulsion with spf 15.  Instead of buying the full size at $28, I walked away with this cute little sampler of their skincare line.  I love most everything Benefit so I figured I couldn't go wrong.  I'm sure I'll go back this week to buy the full size though, it's really light and has a nice scent.  $24 for the b.right sample set.

I love Philosophy 3-in1's, when I saw this new set it was right up my alley.
Sweet Sips has 3 6oz bottles in it.  The scents are heavenly, orange pineapple smoothie, bananas foster ice cream, and cookies and cream. I always have a few of these on hand not only for myself to use, but if I need something extra to throw in a gift.  $25 for this set.

So, if we're keeping track my full price total would have been $190.95.  However, the Redken liters are on sale for $14.99, the Pureology shampoo was 20% off, and the Incharge was marked down to $14.99.  Add to that my 20% my entire purchase coupon, and $17 worth of rewards points for being a Platinum rewards member and I walked out at $116 tax included.  I'd say that's not bad since I won't have to buy shampoo or conditioner for about a year.  I'm planning on checking out the other store in my area later in the week for fun stuff like nail polish and makeup because a girl can never have enough right?

Monday, July 16, 2012

Happy Birthday Mom

Today would have been my Mom's 60th birthday.  I try to imagine what she would have been like at 60.  Still beautiful I'm sure.  She always looked about 15 years younger than she actually was.  There were times she was out with my brother and I, who were both of age at the time mind you, and she would get carded.  She would laugh so hard that she wouldn't be able to get her license out of her wallet.  It was a shock every time, even though it happened often.  She had a great laugh too, and even though she was sick for so long, she was a more positive person than I could ever hope to be.  Those who were lucky enough to know her, all loved her.  It was impossible not to.  So happy birthday Mom, I miss you terribly and love you more each day.
My Mom at 16

July Birchbox

I admit, I've been a little MIA lately.  Work, and life have been busy.  I'm on vacation this week with virtually nothing to do, so expect a post heavy week.  I'm in complete relaxation mode.  Let's see if I can keep from going crazy of boredom by Weds.

I received my July Birchbox on Friday.  For those of you who have never heard of Birchbox, it's a $10 monthly beauty sample subscription service.  Like a magazine, they ship around the 10th of the month and you receive a box with 4 to 6 deluxe samples (somewhat) tailored to you.  Back to July's box.  This month BB partnered with Glamour Magazine to bring us the 5 senses of summer.  I'm not sure I agree with how BB matches each of these items with the senses, but that's ok.

There were 31 box variations that went out this month.  I received either 3, 10, or 30.  The only difference between those 3 was the color of the lip glaze, so I'm not positive on which one I got. Here's what was in my box:
  • Oscar de la Renta Live in Love perfume - Not bad, I had kept seeing that this was a "grandma" scent, but I didn't mind it. (This would be the smell sense)
  • Birchbox exclusive earbuds - These obviously aren't the best quality, but it's nice to have a spare pair.(Hear sense)
  • Larabar Uber Roasted Nut Roll - I'm not a huge fan of getting food in my box, but I like Lara Bars so no biggie. (Taste sense)
  • Jouer Luminizing Moisture Tint in golden - I've posted before about how much I like this product.  The sample size will give me 3 or 4 uses and the color is right for me.(See sense)
  • Alterna Bamboo UV+ Color Protection Fade Proof Fluide - Wow that's a long name.  I have colored hair, so I'll probably give this a try.  Anything that can help my fake red from fading is a win in my book. (Feel sense)
  • Stila Lip Glaze in Action - The color is pretty, I'm not a big fan of lip glazes though.  I live by my Fresh Sugar Plum, so this will probably be given away.
All in all not a bad box, but not my favorite either.  I love Birchbox, they have a great point program so in a few months I'll be able to order a bunch of full size products pretty much for free.

Interested in Birchbox?  Get on the waitlist here.

Friday, July 6, 2012

My hoarding tendencies

I don't like clutter.  I don't have a lot of knick knacks, or things that need dusting.  I don't change my home decor depending on the seasons, because I don't want to store things.  Each year we put up less and less Christmas decorations because again, I don't want to store it.  If it were up to me, I would be fine without a tree too, but my husband isn't going for that.  This is a trait I inherited from my Mom and I'm thankful for it.  I don't have an emotional attachment to "things". 

For some reason though, I seem to hoard samples of beauty products.  It used to be contained to just one drawer, but that drawer is now barely closing.

It's moved on to a basket below, and a cabinet in the bathroom.  And this is before my July Birchbox, and New Beauty Test Tube,  not to mention I have samples on the way from Melvita and Mario Badescu.  I don't know why, but I rarely use any of the samples I receive.  I love the anticipation of getting them, but then they move on to the drawer never to be seen again, unless someone comes to stay with us, or a friend asks for something specific.  Maybe I should sell them in lots on ebay, or trade them on for something I will use.

In the mean time, anybody need anything?

And btw, those Boscia blotting papers?  Pointless.  I used 1 so there are 99 left in the packet.  The best blotting paper I've found is a Starbucks napkin and they're free.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Nailing It

Nail art seems to be quite the trend this summer.  Whether it be painted on or decals, I've seen all different designs.  I received the Sally Hansen Salon Effects in my Voxbox from Influenster.  While I won't use the laced up design, some of them are pretty cute, and seem easy to apply.

This tutorial, from The Beauty Department is a pretty subtle robin's egg look, and would be an easy DIY.  TBD has a ton of easy tutorials for nails, hair, and makeup.

The Tropical Sunset nail, pinned from here,  is a take on an ombre nail with a lovely palm tree on one nail.  I love this one!

What do you think about the single accent nail?  I think it depends, sometimes I like it, and sometimes I think it just looks goofy.  These two, pinned here, and here, I like.

However, these Winnie the Pooh nails, I think take it a little too far.

That's the great think though, there are so many different ways you can go with it!  I know that I would probably go to a salon to have anything like this though.  My left hand would be ok, but my right would be a disaster.

Oh, and by the way, I did start my bracelet making extravaganza last weekend.  I made 5 and though I did lose my patience a bit, it didn't go too bad.  No pics yet, I'm still working out the kinks.