Thursday, December 31, 2015

December 2015 Yays! & Boos!

Post #75 for 2015! I think this is a good place to end it. I was trying to get my December Top 5 up to but dah well. Tomorrow is another day!

Here we go!


Tarte Airbrush Finish Bamboo Foundation Brush

I've had this brush in my stash for a good while but I never used it as foundation brush because it was so big. I don't even think I've used it with my Bare Minerals foundation. I randomly grabbed it on morning to use with my Covergirl Queen foundation and I was totally surprised. It buffed the foundation it to skin nicely and the application was flawless.

EcoTools Domed Bronzer Brush

This used to be one of my go to powder brushes that I hadn't used in forever. I had it in a stack of brushes to give away. When I pulled out the Tarte brush, I said why not to using this brush. Then I remember why it was a favorite. It's excellent for powder and blending everything together.

BH Missy Lynn lipsticks in Miss Lynn & L'Amour

I ordered all 4 of the Missy Lynn lipsticks. When I swatched them on the back of my hand, I was like ooooohhh they are super smooth! They apply nicely on the lips. They're not drying and have nice staying power. Of course I was drawn to the two darker shades.

BH Cosmectics Studio Pro HD Brow Pencil

I picked this up I think after Thanksgiving when it was on sale for $3.50. Sold! I got the shade Ebony. I've never tried Anastasia's Brow Wiz but I saw some reviews comparing the two. I refuse to pay $21 for a brow pencil. A brow pencil is one product that I do use up in a decent amount of time. Also I use it pretty much everyday. Even on the days when I don't wear any makeup. I'll still fill in my brows. So something inexpensive is the way I chose to go. I like the packaging and I like the shade. You can really define and shape your brows with this pencil. I would definitely repurchase it.

Bath & Body Work Be Joyful

Lawd knows I did not need more Bath & Body Works! I was in the store with my friend when the had all the signature items on sale for $5. My friend actually go this for me but I did purchase some items too gah! This smells so good! The key notes are Sparkling Clementine, Gold Mango, Frosted Jasmine, Winter Melon and Shimmering Sugar. It's not too fruity but it's not heavy like a winter scent. I think it's a good a year round scent. I text my friend and said that I may need to get more of the lotion during the semi annual  sale lol! Sadly it's not part of the current sale going on now. It is part of the buy 3, get 3 free promo going on and you can throw a coupon on top of that if you have one.


Tarte The Brow Architect 

This was included in the first Essence Beauty Box that I received and I was excited to try it. When I got around to using it, I was like oh my damn and not in a good way. The shade I have in deep and ain't nothing deep about it. It's very cool toned and almost grey vs being a dark brown. There's no brown in it. I think I ended up grabbing my Iman brow pencil to try and make my brow look halfway decent. Maybe I got a bad one *shrugs*. In the trash it goes.

Benzac Acne Solutions Acne Eliminating Cleanser

I was going to use this up. I really was. I probably have about a fourth cleanser left in the tube but I just can't. I just don't like this. I don't like the consistency and I feel like it hasn't done anything for my skin. The only plus to this cleanser is that is has a lower percentage of Benzoyl Peroxide, so it didn't dry out my skin. Also in my haste to get rid of it, I tossed it before I could take a pic. I ordered this from and it's also sold at Ulta.

Benzac Acne Solutions Intensive Spot Treatment

I don't feel bad tossing this out since I got it as a gift with purchase with the cleanser. Again I don't like the consistency. Ain't nothing "intensive" about this treatment (and yes I said ain't nothing). The couple times I went to use it this month. it BURNED! I was like oh hell no! I'm sticking with Clean & Clear's acne spot treatment. That's my holy grail product. I also have a Bare Minerals Blemish Therapy (that I forgot to include in my skin post! D'oh!) that I've really enjoyed in the past that I can add to the rotation to use up. Tossed this with a quickness as well before snapping a pic.


This is the WORST shipping company! QVC has started using them for some of their east coast orders. I've read that Amazon also uses them as well. I've had an issue with every order that QVC has used them to ship an order to me. If you check their social media or look at reviews on the company, they are absolutely terrible. I have no idea why a vendor would use them as a shipper. One of my recent orders never arrived. It was this constant back and forth with them but they basically lied to me saying that the item was delivered. Whatever! QVC has refunded which is "fine" and they gave me a $20 credit on my account but I don't have the item. I could reorder it but the same mess could happen again. It makes me leery to order from QVC if they continue to use them. Now mind you this has been with orders I have shipped to my office. I haven't had any issues with home deliveries since they come via the post office or UPS. I usually have stuff shipped to my office because someone is there during normal business hours. I don't feel like going through the hassle of notices being left on my door when having stuff shipped to my house. But shoot I might have to if this mess with LaserShip keeps up. Just gimme my stuff!


Next year I may combine this with my favorites post. We shall see. Stay Tuned!

I hope everyone has a safe and Happy New Year!

Skin Care Collection - Masks, Peels and Scrubs

Lions, tigers and bears oh my lol!! There's a lot going on here. I think these are more so my weakness than cleansers. As you can see, I couldn't get everything in one pic.

  • Murad Clarifying Mask
    • This is another Massage Envy purchase. I do like this mask. Again it's expensive like the rest of Murad's product. I feel that I get the same results from less expensive masks *shrugs*. I use it once to twice a week depending on what's going on with my skin.
  • Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque
    • I've used this off and on for years and it's a favorite. You cannot beat the price and it gets the job done.
  • Queen Helene Olive Oil Masque
    • This a newer item to my stash and I think I mentioned in a post. I have not used it on its own. I used after the Murad Clarifying Mast or Mint Julep Masque. Since they are masks  that draw everything out of your skin, the olive oil masque helps put moisture back into your skin. It's like a spa treatment and my skin feels so doggone soft and smooth. When I first got this, I would try to do the "mask duo" once a week.
  • Queen Helene Grape Seed Extract Peel Off Masque
    • This masque is kinda cool since it's a peel off one, You can see the icky stuff that comes out of your pores/off your skin. I try to use this twice a week. Keyword here is try.
  • St. Ives Blackhead Clearing Green Tea Scrub
    • I use this scrub about twice a week. It mainly depends on if I have some critters on my face. I do feel like it helps calm whatever breakouts I have along with taking care of any blackheads.
  • Serious Skincare Glycolic Gommage
    • This is brand spanking new to my stash. Literally. I ordered it from HSN and got it on Christmas Eve. I've only used it once. It's comparable to Glam Glow's Youth Mud Mask but cheaper and you get more product. I picked this up on a BOGO which was an even better deal.
  • Serious Skincare Phyto Pumpkin Facial Scrub
    • This is another HSN purchase. I've used it a few times and I do like it. It's not as abrasive as your typical facial scrub. It has a gel like base and it smells GOOD too!
  • Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid
    • This stuff right here! If I can't be bothered to do a a mask or scrub then I definitely make sure that I use this bad boy. It's an all in one product. Check her website for more details on this product. I definitely use it at night. It the morning it varies.
  • Philosophy The Microdelivery Peel (not pictured)
    • This is an old favorite that I only use once a week. But lately I have been slacking on using it, I need to get with it since I have it in super size (4 oz). With this product you get physical and chemical exfoliation (if I remember correctly from the presentations on QVC). The results are smoother and brighter skin.
  • Ambi Fade Cream
    • I have this in the version for oily skin and it does the job on gradually fading dark spots.  I was kind of scared to use it but after reading reviews on the product, I was ok with it. Just make sure you use it on the spot/acne mark only. This isn't a product to slather all over your face. I use it as needed.
  • Clean & Clear Persa-Gel 10
    • This is my holy grail spot treatment product for pimples. It gets the job done and it doesn't irritate my skin.
  • CVS/pharmacy Pore Perfecting Toner
    • Wasn't sure where to put this, so I slapped it here lol! This is my toner of the moment. I like it and would repurchase it. My skin feels very smooth after using it.
I didn't include makeup wipes since they vary. I like several different ones. Most of the time I pick up whatever is on sale or I have a coupon for at the time. I was brief and mainly stated how often I use to product. Google is your friend :D Philosophy and Serious Skincare on are QVC and HSN. Paula's Choice is also now on QVC. You can watch detailed presentations on the products. The other items are available at various retailers and there are a lot of reviews online. 

And there you have it! My obsession with skin has grown over the last couple of years. But again, I am trying to narrow down the products I use.

I may try to get one more post in before the ball drops. We shall see...

Skin Care Collection - Moisturizers and Serums

Here we have moisturizers and serums. I included eye products as well. Sorry the pic is blurry. Grrr!

  • Neutrogena Visibly Even Daily Moisturizer SPF 30
    • This is what I'm currently using as my daytime moisturizer and I do like it. It absorbs into the skin nicely and doesn't make my skin oily.
  • Ambi Even & Clear Daily Moisturizer SPF 30
    • I've used this a few times. I can't remember if I like it or not. I plan to use it after the Neutrogena moisturizer.
  • Murad Anti-Aging Moisturizer SPF 20
    • I picked this up after a facial at Massage Envy. I think it's available in SPF 30 now. I do like this but it's hella expensive. So right now I don't plan on repurchasing it.
  • L'Oreal Youth Code Texture Perfector Serum Concentrate
    • THIS right here is my HOLY GRAIL serum! I love this stuff and can't tell you how many bottles of this I have gone through. The downer is that I think it's being disconnected. It's still available online via Target and When it disappears from their sites then I'll start to freak out lol. I use this morning and night.
  • Serious Skincare Creamerum Evolve Cream/Serum Blended Facial Beauty Treatment
    • I'm still enjoying this. It could probably take the place of the L'Oreal serum. Right now I'm using as my final step in my night time routine.
  • Nature's Bounty Vitamin E Cream
    • I ordered this online from Walgreens to potentially use as a a body cream. The jar is 2oz. It's facial cream whoops. Guess I should have read the description before I ordered. I use this on days when I'm bumming around the house during the day. I have also used it as a night cream. It's ok. I'm not wowed by it and not sure if I'll continue to use it.
  • Olay Regenerist Luminous Eye
    • I got this in a Target Beauty Box. I haven't tried it out yet.
  • Serious Skincare Creamerum Evolve Cream/Serum Blended Eye Beauty Treatment
    • This eye product is AMAZE BALLS! It's so good. It hydrates the under eye area nicely and doesn't interfere with my under eye concealer. I love that it's a cream/serum duo. I use it morning and night.
  • L'Oreal Youth Code Eye
    • This was my go to before I got the Serious Skincare product. I'll go back to it once I use Serious Skincare up. When I first got this I used it more and night. Then I strated using it just at night.
  • Garnier Skin Renewal Anti-Puff Eye Roller
    • This was a random TJ Maxx or Marshalls purchase. I mainly used this in the morning and enjoyed the cooling sensation of the rollerball.
Next up scrubs, peels and masks!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Skin Care Collection - Cleansers

I decided to break up into my skin care stash into 3 posts.

No judgments please.

I actually forgot I had one of these cleansers until I went through everything. Oye. It's good to pull out what you have and take an inventory.

Here we go!
  • Ambi Even & Clear Foaming Cleanser
    • I've mentioned this before. I got this in a set again and it's ok. Right now I'm using it as my morning cleanser. I'll use it up but I don't plan on purchasing it on its own or the set that it came in again. *knock on wood*
  • Ambi Black Soap with Shea Butter
    • I've used this on and off. I can't really say whether or not it has helped my skin. Black soap is supposed to be good for drawing impurities out of the skin. I've mainly used it on no makeup days in the evening. I think I may go and put it in my shower so that I can use it on a more consistent basis. I'll try to report back on it.
  • Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti-Wrinkle Anti-Blemish Cleanser
    • This is the one I forgot that I had. I've only used it a few times. I can't remember if I like it or not. I got it as a potential dupe to the Murad Time Release Acne Cleanser ($32). I plan to use this after I used up the Ambi cleanser.
  • Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser
    • I've used this before in a sample size. I got another sample from Massage Envy after a facial. I do like this cleanser. I typically use it in the morning. I don't plan on purchasing a full size since it's $36!
  • Paula's Choice Resist Perfectly Balanced Foaming Cleanser
    • I'm using this now as my evening cleanser with my Clarisonic but I have used it in the morning. I like it but I'm not wowed by it. It does irritate my eyes some when I try to use it to remove my eye makeup. Once I use it up, I don't plan on repurchasing it.
  • Noxzema Classic Clean
    • This is an old school favorite that I had not used in years! I picked it up after reading a post about it and I've really enjoyed having it back in my stash. I would definitely repurchase it. I may get in the the pump next time. I mainly use this in the morning but I have used in it the evening on no makeup days. My skin feels so soft and smooth after using it
  • Philosophy Purity Made Simple
    • Of all the cleanser listed, THIS is my absolute favorite. I used to use this a few years and for whatever reason I stopped. I started using it again back in June and have thoroughly enjoyed using this cleanser. I've used this morning, night and with my Clarisonic. In a pinch during a work trip, I shaved with this and it worked perfectly. It also does not irritate my eye area when I use it to remove my eye makeup which is a HUGE plus. I plan on keeping this in my rotation. It's just so good. Right now I do have it under my sink since I'm trying to use up the Paula's Choice cleanser. But once I'm done with Paula's Choice, its right back to Purity!
Of all the cleansers listed, the two that I plan on keeping in my rotation are Noxzema and Purity. I'm trying to pair down my stash and use what works for skin and stick with it.

Next up moisturizers and serums!

Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas Tunes Friday - Week 4!

I should have mentioned this song first but it's fitting for Christmas Day lol! It's not officially Christmas for me until I hear Silent Night by The Temptations.

A song that invokes serious reflection during the holiday season (at least for me) is John Lennon's Happy Xmas. I like the original by I absolutely love Celine Dion's rendition of the song.

Of course I had to throw in a bonus! It's Christmas! I saw this video posted all over Facebook weeks ago but just didn't watch. It's The Pentatonix's version of Mary, Did You Know? I do like Pentatonix. I finally gave it a listen and just WOW!!!!!! The song is also on Spotify and one day I swear I listened to it like six times. It's so good!

And there you have it. I seriously could have listed five songs for each post. Maybe I'll do this again next year.

I hope that everyone has a wonderful and fantabulous Christmas!!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Favorite Christmas Movie

On Instagram a couple of years go, there was a post-a-day challenge in December. One of the posts was about your favorite Christmas movie. Of course I couldn't pick just one. So here's my top 3!
  1. Home Alone
  2. Elf
  3. A Christmas Story
One year, all 3 were on different channels for 24 hours. It was a good day! I know I'll watch A Christmas Story about 5 times since it'll be on TBS starting tonight at 8pm! And it looks like it's going to be on TNT as well. Elf is coming on this evening on ABC Family. I couldn't find a listing for Home Alone..

What's your favorite Christmas movie?

Whatever it is, curl up and enjoy!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

So Gift Cards? Yea or Nay?

So I came across this article on Twitter titled "Why Gift Cards Are a Crime Against Christmas". I quick scanned it, got the overall gist and it irritated me for the most part. The topic of gift cards came up on one of the local radio stations this week. I also talked about this topic with my boss the other day.  My boss said she agreed with the article but then said she was picking up some gift cards. To me a gift card is still a gift and some thought does go into it. If someone has a favorite brand or store, then why not get them a gift card? Especially if you don't know what they want or need? You could by some random gift or something you think they would want but that's a crap shoot. Yes, you can get a gift receipt and they can exchange it for something else. But who really wants to do that? Is that being thoughtful? I asked my brother what he wanted and he said that he didn't really want anything. Then HE SAID a gift card to Kohl's since it's one of his favorite stores. From my own perspective, I did not need JACK other than a new car but I know no one is going to gift that to me lol. I have gotten two gift cards from Sephora and I'm pleased as punch. I'm just sick of folk and their opinions on what people do, spend their money, so on and so forth. How about we just be happy and grateful when someone gifts you something?  Too much like right I suppose. With all the craziness going on in the world, I think there are more important things to worry about that the topic of gift cards. They are some people who will not get anything for Christmas who might be quite happy with a gift card. But lemme hush.

*end rants*

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Cookies! Cookies! Cookies!

I probably should have posted this last week. Dah well!

If you're looking for a last minute gift idea or looking for a sweet treat to make for the holidays, then try cake mix cookies! I'm not a baker by any means. A few years ago my office started doing a cookie exchange. The first year I think I did some Toll House cookies that came with red and green morsels. The next year I stumbled across the White Chocolate Chip recipe using Devils Food Cake and the heavens opened up lol! It was SUPER EASY to make! I bought some dessert baggies from The Dollar Tree and viola! Since then I have found more cake mix cookie recipes! I have done Carrot Cake (I used white chocolate chips and chopped pecans), Red Velvet (using the White Chocolate Chip recipe and using Red Velvet cake mix) and this year I did Easy Lemon Cookies. I've done the White Chocolate Chip recipe with and without rolling them in sugar and they are fine both ways. I have some other cake mix cookies recipes saved on my Sweet Thaannnngg! Pinterest board to try.

 I have given some of these cookies as gifts and they have been a big hit. Also it's pretty inexpensive since cake mixes are generally on sale during the holidays along with other baking items like pecans and chocolate chips. This year I actually got a nice tin from The Dollar Tree for the cookies I made for a friend and her family. The possibilities are endless with various cake mixes and add-ins!! If you try one of these recipes out or have one of your own that you love, let me know.


Monday, December 21, 2015

#ManicureMonday Holiday Festive

This is about as festive as I'm gonna get. It just doesn't "feel" like Christmas to me. *shrugs*

Today I'm wearing Sally Hansen's Xtreme Wear Black Out, Zoya Renee, Zoya Envy and Sephora by OPI Good Tidings We Bling. This was inspired by Ckey Beauty. She showed her recent nail polish change on Snapchat. I said I likey then started digging through my stash and this is what I came up with.

See you next Monday!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Christmas Tunes Friday - Week 3!

Another album I like listening to during the holidays is The Preacher's Wife soundtrack. One of my favorite songs is Who Would Imagine a King.

This song I usually hear on the radio since it's go go music and native to the DC area. There is a go go version of Santa Clause Is Coming to Town and I love it. Someone posted this video on Facebook and it tickled me.  This is one song I HAVE to hear around Christmas or it just isn't Christmas.

One more week to go! Oye vey! *covers eyes* I swear there should be another week.

Monday, December 14, 2015

#ManicureMonday Butter London So Major! and OPI Big Apple Red

Happy Monday!

Something a little more festive this week. Today I've wearing the green shade from the Allure & Butter London set I picked up from Ulta It's called So Major! (love the name) and it's a pretty green. Not too dark and not too bright. It's described as a loden-green shimmer . I was going to pair it with Sephora by OPI's Good Tidings We Bling but did not open the bottle before I started painting my nails and couldn't get it out with wet nails. Gah! So I opted for OPI's Big Apple Red. It's described as a bright shinny red. It's the business!

TTFN - ta ta for now!

Friday, December 11, 2015

Christmas Tunes Friday - Week 2!

One of my favorite Christmas albums is the Christmas Album by the Jackson 5 and I love their version of The Little Drummer Boy.

I forgot about this song until I heard it on the radio. I never knew who it was by until last week. I'm not kidding. If you were ever in band, orchestra or the choir then I'm sure you did this song at some point for a Christmas concert. Ahhh memories lol! I was in orchestra. Another song I like by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra is Christmas Eve/Sarajevo. They were here in town last week. I would love to see them perform. Maybe next year.

See next Friday for more Christmas tunes!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Can You Wrap?

Sadly my gift wrapping skills are kind of whack. My mom is fancy with her gift wrapping skills. Apparently it wasn't passed on to me HA! I am a gift bag and tissue paper girl through and through. Around this time of the year, I try to find a good deal on a set. I was poking around on QVC and came across a few sets from Kringle Express. These are super cute and they are decently priced. I hopped over to HSN and couldn't find anything similar. Last year I found a set of 5 bags with tissue paper at Five Below. Also The Dollar Tree is a great place for your gift wrapping needs. And of course after Christmas is a great time to stock up. I usually hit up Target.

Happy Wrapping!

Monday, December 7, 2015

A Different Take on the Holiday Season

I've been following the blog Becoming Minimalist for about a year or so now.  I've really been enjoying it and it has given me some things to think about and I reconsider my buying habits and the "things" that I own.

A couple of weeks ago there was a guest post, "5 Tips for a More Intentional Holiday Season". I really enjoyed the post and wanted to share it since were are in the midst of the holiday season. We can get caught up in the "things" of the holiday season but it so much more than that. Just something to think about *wink*.


Friday, December 4, 2015

Christmas Tunes Friday - Week 1!

A little holiday fun...

Back in 2012, I did a post about Christmas music. I LOOOOOVEEE Christmas music! So I had to throw some in the Blogmas mix! I'll pick two songs every Friday between now and Christmas. One will be related to the birth of Christ (since it's what I believe in) and the other will more reflective of the season!

This is gonna be fun! *bounces around*

One of my absolute favorite Christmas songs is O Holy Night. My hands down favorite version is by Celine Dion. Chiilllllllsss AND tears! Phew!

A holiday tune that gets my bopping around in the car or at my desk is Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree by Brenda Lee. How can you not like this song? *bops around*

One of the radio stations in the area WASH-FM, plays Christmas all day until Christmas. Sometimes I listen online at work or in the car. I also have a Christmas playlist on Spotify. I need to add some songs lol! Check it out!

Ok enough gushing! Let the music play!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Product Play December 2015

December is upon us! Can you believe it?? I feel like this year flew by. Literally. That's alright. 2015 wasn't a bad year but it wasn't really a great year either. The last few months have been kind of rough.


Here's what I'm play around with this month!

Palette Play

I'm leaving this kind of open ended. I still haven't touched my Bare Minerals Ready shadows. I've picked up some palettes that I have not really used and I need to try and do some looks with them to determine if I'm going to keep them. Two are from Urban Decay (Vice 4 and Gwen Stefani), so I highly doubt that they'll go back. But then again you never know. Then I also picked up the Jem and The Holograms palette purely for nostalgic reasons. I'm an 80s baby and I LIIIIVVVED for Jem! I still watch the cartoons. Thank you Netflix! I also picked up the compact mirror.

Hey Gwen!

This is seriously too cute!

Polish Play

Leaving this kind of open ended too. I have two more shades to try on from the Allure & Butter London set from last month. I randomly picked up two Covergril nail polishes from CVS. This was my rage nail polish purchase. I know I'll use the Sephora by OPI polish in Good Tidings We Bling that I use every year in December.

Fuchsia Flame and Emerald Blaze

Out of my Face

Here's what I used up in November:

  • Key West Health and Beauty Organic Unrefined African Shea Butter
  • Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid 1 oz
  • Amla Legend 1001 Oils Cream Night Wrap
  • St. Ives Even & Bright Pink Lemon & Mandarin Orange Scrub

I'm adding a couple of hair products to the mix:

  • Fantasia P.M. Night Time Oil Treatment
  • Amla Legend Damage Antidote Oil Moisturizer
Kind of a lack luster month. It beeeeeezzzz that way sometimes.

And FIN!

Thank you for taking the time to read my rambles and for commenting on my posts. As I've mentioned before, I do this for fun. I'm not trying to get stuff sent to me. I'm not trying to make any money from this. This is part my beauty diary and random musings. I like talking about makeup, beauty, and other randomness. So if you've enjoyed anything that you've read, then that's enough for me.

We'll do this all over again come January. There may be a twist perhaps *insert shifty eyes*

Stay tuned...

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Welcome to Blogmas!

*throws red and green glitta*

Welp I'm going to give this a whirl for December. I'm not going to promise a post everyday. I do this for fun. So I don't want to put any pressure or constraints on myself. Then it wouldn't be fun anymore and it would be more like work. Make sense?

Not every post will be Christmas/holiday related. I plan to throw in some updates to my book stuff, purging stuff (or possible lack thereof), maybe a future long term no buy *cringes*, a possible skin care collection, etc. So hopefully it'll be fun.

I still cannot believe it's December. *smh*

Heeeerrrrreeee weeeee goooooooo!!!!!