Sunday, December 20, 2015

Outfit of the Day: Fall Weather Is Here

I have been lacking on my outfit of the days, but yesterday I made it a point to take a few photos for you loves.  We finally got one day of cold weather so I took advantage of it.  I've been on the bargain hunt lately, so I got some great deals on my outfit details below.

Outfit deets:
Jacket:  JC Penney
Shirt:  Bebe
Skirt:  Forever 21
Boots:  Madden Girl

Thursday, December 17, 2015

My Top 5 Body Moisturizers

I thought that I would share some of my favorite moisturizers, especially since the winter season is approaching.  These moisturizers are my go to fall/winter "moisture keepers".  I favor thick, heavy creams that have natural products such as shea at the top of the ingredient list.  I also seek products where water and glycerin are the primary ingredients over parabens and mineral oil.  You can get most of these items below for great retail value.  Check out my picks.  What's yours?  Stay FABULOUS!

1.  The Body Shop

2.  Sephora Super Supreme Body Butter

3.  Bath and Body Works Lotion

4.  Loccitane

5.  Jergens Shea Butter Lotion

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Birthday Behavior (Winter OOTNs)

Hey Loves!  I had this plan to upload this elaborate lookbook with my fall outfits, but you know the way life works out lol, I was not able to get footage from my birthday trip nor any other fall excursions.  I took a trip to Las Vegas this for my birthday.  I had such a great time that I neglected my camera.  By the way we should all do that sometimes...too much camera means you weren't making enough time for fun.  I like to keep things simple so enjoy the pics below!  Stay FABULOUS!

Dress:  Asos, Jacket:  Bebe, Shoes:  Target

Dress:  Asos, Jacket:  JC Penney

Dress:  H & M

Dress:  H & M

Dress:  Asos, Jacket:  JC Penney

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Is A Job in Beauty Really All That Glamorous?

For many, a job in the beauty world of hair, makeup, skincare, etc. is the ultimate dream job.  But, are these jobs really that glamorous?  You see many celebrity artists and famous youtubers praising their jobs and new found happiness.  But, is it the same for other members in the beauty world?  There are many pro's and con's to any job or profession, and personal choice is the determining factor in choosing the best route of employment. 

Let's talk about some of the difficulties or cons that may arise while working in the beauty world.  My personal first concern is having to maintain the image of being "put together".  In any beauty job, your expectation is to look the part of being beautiful.  You need to maintain hair, nails, makeup, skincare, clothing, etc. at all times regardless of how crappy your feel.  Your buyers purchase beauty items based on their first impression of the item, which is you, the employee.  I must admit that I am not a glamour person every day, and I tend to have some lazy days of no makeup.  But, when I began working at a beauty store, the option for a lazy day was not available.   That is not a big con and will most likely not be a con at all for those who love to be glamorous everyday, all day.  Another concern is benefits.  Let's just be real; we need health insurance, retirement, life insurance etc.  These options are usually cheaper through an employer, because they may pay part of your benefit costs.  So unless you work for a large corporation like Mary Kay, MAC, department stores (Nordstrom, J C Penney, etc.), salons, etc., freelance and self employed individuals may spend more dollars obtaining these necessities.  For the "in demand" beauties, traveling and demanding work schedules can be daunting.  Many great artists were at some celebrity's beck and call at some point....traveling, on call, working long hours.  Many artists travel for classes, appearances, etc.  This can have a negative affect on one's personal, family, relationships.  I am quite sure that I did not scare you away, because that is not my intention whatsoever.

So why join the beauty world?  Why not?  Beauty is a large industry and is doing very well on the market globally.  Get a job doing something you love and get paid big bucks to do so.  For many this is an opportunity to travel and network...this could aid in you in achieving your personal goals to maybe own a business, create a product, and so on.  The market and the demand for beauty does not look like it is decreasing any time soon.  More and more products are being created to make us look our best physically and mentally.  There are more outlets to advertise the beauty world now than ever before.  Even if you pick up a part time job, like myself, it is an opportunity to sharpen your skills, get the scoop on what's new, and enjoy a little gratis! 

So, what about you?  Do you work in beauty?  Do you want a career in the beauty industry?  Stay FABULOUS!

Thursday, December 3, 2015

What Trends To Expect For Spring 2016

So the buzz now is what trends to expect for Spring 2016.  Fashion Week can be a bit overwhelming with many designers presenting their latest collections.  From a non-designer/non fashion expert point of view, the object is to figure what trends can we grasp from the extreme representations on the runway.  A consensus from many editors have revealed the following trends for spring 2016:  lace, 70s, raiffa/fringe, low rise, off the shoulder, tye dye, white shirt, Victorian, net, orange, and more.  What's your favorite?  Stay FABULOUS!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

My Top Mascaras for 2015

1.  Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara
I have previously written a review for this mascara.  This is currently my favorite mascara on the market.  It performs wonders on my short lashes.  This mascara retails for 23.00 USD.

2.  Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes 4 in 1 Mascara
Tarte's most popular Lights, Camera, Lashes 4 in 1 mascara can be easily listed as one of my top mascaras in the high end market.  Tarte claims this it is lengthening, curling, volumizing, and conditioning mascara.  This mascara does a great job of separating, lengthening, and volumizing my lashes.  It retails for 21.00 USD, which is similar to pricing in high end market.

3.  Urban Decay Perversion
This gorgeous black mascara will make your lashes look super dramatic.  Great formula that lengthens more that volumizes but is still a great all around mascara.  Try it with the subversion mascara primer, and your lashes will reach the sky.  The mascara retails for 22.00 USD.

4.  Givenchy Phenomen'Eyes Mascara
The mascara with the funky wand.  This mascara is different than many including a round bristle ball at the end of the wand.  This mascara is great for getting down to the root of your lashes and creating great separation.  I love applying this mascara before applying a dark lengthening mascara like Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara.  It works wonders on your lower lashes as well.  This mascara retails for 31.00 USD. 

5.  Benefit They're Real
This is a great mascara that gives the appearance of false lashes.  The formula is not my can be a bit drying.  It has an amazing wand and really makes you questions whether or not those lashes are real.  The mascara retails for 24.00 USD.

6.  Bare Escentuals Buxom Lash
This is a great mascara for volumizing and separating my lashes.  A large rubber wand similar to Benefit's They're Real Mascara, this mascara is a great all around performer.  The mascara retails for 19.00 USD.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

How To Get FREE Makeup

I'm sure the word free is what brought you here.  But, I said it...FREE!  The costs of makeup add up.  Believe me I know!  Even drugstore items can easily total 40.00 USD more with 5 to 6 products.  Besides stalking all types of sales...take advantage of ways to try new products without spending.

Free Samples
Many beauty retailers offer samples with any purchase.  Samples allow you the opportunity to get one to two uses of a product to try it out.

Coupon Codes
The internet is your friend.  Beauty retailers email and release coupon codes for free items all the time.  Before making a purchase on any beauty website, I check for coupon codes to receive some new or favorite goodies.

Reward Programs
As a way to retain consumers, businesses are offering reward programs.  These programs can offer any thing from discounts, dollar amount deductions or credits, and/or free deluxe items.  Reward programs usually are free to join and require minimal personal information for registration.  My personal favorite programs are Ebates, Sephora's Beauty Insider and Ulta's Perks.

Partition To Makeup Brands
Partition to beauty brands to test, review, and/or become an affiliate of the brand.  Many YouTubers and bloggers receive products for advertisement of a particular brand.  Some companies may reach out to you or contact the company that you are interested in.

Enter A Giveaway
Follow all of  your favorite brands on social media.  Many companies offer giveaways on their social media accounts.

Refer A Friend
Companies such as Ebates, Mr. Rebates, Hautelook, etc. offer dollar amount credits or gift cards for referring a friend.  Normally the friend has a certain amount of time to make a purchase once signing up in order for you to redeem your reward.  Hautelook offers a 20.00 USD credit for a referral....that's free money!

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Tea Time: Friends many of have them.  But, many of us have "real" friends?  Don't worry I'll wait. 

So, what is a "real" friend first of all?  When I think of a friend, I think of my confidant, shoulder to lean on, partner in crime, the person who encourages my clown behavior...  I also think a friend is someone who can tell you the truth even when no one else will. 

Now there is a season for everything including relationships.  Some relationships just are not meant to last the test of time.  But why does it seem that it is so hard to find a friend that can be what I would call a "real" friend?

These days it seems as though some people are looking for someone who can only benefit them.  If there is no benefit or gain then there is no real friendship.  Those needs dictate what friendship level you are on, e.g. best friend, associate, etc.  As I have gotten older, my friends have become few...almost non existent.  Getting closer to the big 3-0 means more personal and career preparation. So, it is expected that some friendships will be stressed and tested.  But where are my friends when I'm going through stress and a test?  Where are my "real" friends?  What are your thoughts on friendships?  Stay FABULOUS!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Why I Wear Wigs

Youtuber:  BeautyByJJ
I get this question so much.  You hair is so long...why do you wear wigs?  The answer is simple... convenience.  Currently wigs are my preference for protective and lazy day styles.  Wigs do not carry the same old negative connotation...wigs are for old women, women with no hair, people with no money, etc.  Now, many women chose to wear a wig instead of sew ins, quick weaves, and/or extensions. 

Wigs allow you the flexibility to secure and remove your hair without fuss.  I can do my hair in record time when it is styled in advance on a manikin head.  You just put it on and go!  Many companies are making high end and low end wigs with very close resemblance to one's natural hair.  I do not secure my wigs to my hairline, so there is minimal damage to your edges.  Wigs also allow you the flexibility to change your hair often...try styles that you may have always wanted to try.  Do you wear wigs?  What's your opinion on wigs, weaves, extensions, etc. ?

Try one.  Stay FABULOUS!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Tea Time: Body Image

I think the world has taken a turn for the worse.  Today, I should want a booty like J Lo, lips like Angelina Jolie, breasts like Kim Kardashian, a nose like Halle Berry, hair like Jennifer Aniston, and so on and so on.  Can't I just look

Society has definitely taken a different angle on beauty.  Beauty is no longer emphasizing what the good Lord gave you...but it's getting what you want and how large you want it.  Where do I begin with how fake our bodies have become.  Young women and men are getting cosmetic procedures at younger and younger ages.  According to American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) statistics, 63,623 cosmetic surgical procedures were performed on people age 13-19 in 2013, while 155,941 cosmetic minimally-invasive procedures were performed.  The justification is that these procedures prevent teens from withdrawing socially in their teens and suffering compounding consequences in their early adulthood.  It is said that teens get surgery to fit in, and adults get surgery to stand out.  So, is it ok to tell your child that if they do not like something physically to change it?

Why not embrace it?  Many young surgeries are targeted at nose and breast corrections.  We are all fearfully and wonderfully made.  I know growing up that we all just want to fit in and look like everyone else, but we have to learn to embrace uniqueness.

I, personally, struggled with being the lanky, acne prone child, teenager, and adult.  I am apart of what you would call the "itty bitty titty committee".  I also wanted to change my hair type, skin color, eye color, nose, lips, and just about everything else.  I was not the definition of beauty (especially not for an African American woman).  And, I used to think that one day I will grow out of it or pay to change it.   As a teenager, I hated my body wondering why was I the only one in the family like this.  I was often teased and still currently teased about my size for my age.  I still possess that teen, boyish body that the good Lord gave me.

But, at some point during my early adulthood, I realized that I am perfectly fine just the way I am.  My parents told me this repeatedly growing up, but it wasn't until one day a few years ago that I became ok with being me.  Now, I still have my insecurities and flaws that I dislike.  (I still get asked if I'm in high school!)  But, I have learned to live with them because that makes me who I am.  The concept is not to make myself look like a beautiful woman; it is to be a beautiful woman and let everyone else jump on board.  I learned that I would have to accept myself and others just as they are.

We have missed that mark with the concept that beauty is on the inside.  A "beautiful" exterior with a horrid personality is still ugly in my opinion.  Your exterior is just like clothing and can change often...why focus on the exterior when it could vanish tomorrow.  Your character and personality will always be there. I was so afraid for people to know about my vlogging and blogging because they would judge me based on my appearance.  But, I learned that sometimes the flaws that someone picks out are the insecurities that they have for themselves.

Do not let anyone deter you from being you.  Be unapologetically you.  Stay FABULOUS!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Bath and Body Works $3 Sale!

It's that time again!  Bath and Body Works has all signature body lotions on sale for 3.00 USD.  The sale is for today only.   Grab yours while supplies last!  Stay FABULOUS!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Are Drugstore Prices Too High?

19.99 USD
Do you think that the drugstore makeup quality is improving?  Do those improvements come at a higher consumer cost...or can we chalk that up to inflation?  These are the questions that I am asking myself when I am walking down the aisles of CVS, Walgreens, Target, etc.  Of course, we are seeing sales of all sorts for the drugstore brands, but some of the original prices for these drugstore brands are topping over 20.00 USD.  I do not normally plan to spend over 50.00 USD (including BOGO sales and more) in a drugstore.  But, slowly I am beginning to feel as if the 50.00 bucks spent on a handful of products in the drugstore should just go toward a favorite product at a place like Sephora, Ulta, etc.  Don't get me wrong, there are some great products out there...I just expect to find them at a reasonable price.

Rimmel London 4.49 USD

One brand in particular whose prices are increasing to the top of the drugstore market is Loreal.  Loreal's new Infalliable line had me thinking that I was shopping at the MAC counter...not because of the product, but the price.  Their setting spray retails for approximately 16.99 USD.  You can buy MAC fix plus for 22.00 USD or fix plus mini for 10.00 USD.  The Infallibale foundation retails for approximately 12.99 USD (that's what I paid at Target).  The formulation was pretty good, and the color match was ok being the darkest shade in the line.  The bottom line is...rather than have a so so color match, I would much rather purchase a 27.00 USD MAC foundation.  For us women of color, we are still waiting on the variety in shades to increase in the drugstore department.  Many women of color purchase two colors to get the best result.  If you purchase two Loreal foundations, you would be paying approximately 26.00 USD.  I would much rather buy the high end, better quality, better color match, etc.  Now, if I have a good color match then the price is decent...dare I say somewhat reasonable.  But, in my college days, I wouldn't pay over 8.00 USD or 9.00 USD for a foundation. Now the prices are slowly rising.  The politics of makeup, right? I think that Loreal and Revlon has the best color selection for women of color (not many but better than the rest!).  I would like to see some more improvements in formulation in order to justify the price hikes.

So are we overpaying for drugstore makeup?  Are drugstore prices reasonable for your beauty needs?  Stay FABULOUS!

Milani 8.79 USD

Revlon 7.79 USD

Physicians Formula 11.95
Loreal 16.99 USD

Loreal 12.99 USD

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Cover Fx Custom Color Drops First Impressions

So I received a deluxe sample is the Cover Fx Drops several weeks ago, and I had been waiting on a opportune moment to try it out.  With that being said, I am not doing an all inclusive review because that would require me to test this product out in several different ways, and this product can be used in many different ways.  Sephora states that this is "a revolutionary drop formula of concentrated pigments that allows you to weightlessly transform products in your beauty regimen into your ideal coverage".
"This innovative formula contains Flash Fusion Technology, so as soon as you drop in and mix with your favorite product, nothing but pure pigment is left behind—allowing you to customize your ideal level of coverage. Blend them with anything liquid to create your desired coverage, including moisturizers, serums, oils, primers, foundations, and tinted moisturizers that are water-, oil-, or silicone-based. Simply adjust your coverage by the number of drops you add. The pigments are coated with lecithin, which is biochemically similar to the skin, to ensure seamless blending, precise control, and the smoothest application."

I received a deluxe sample in N100.  My first time trying this product, I used my Becca Ever Matte Poreless Primer and the recommended number of drops for coverage (approximately three).  The color match was perfect, and I had a lightweight satin coverage.  I set it with my MUFE pro powder.  The wear time was not so perfect.  After an hour of wear, oil started breaking through in  my T-zone.  After about 4 hours, I was just flat out shiny/oily!  The primer used is my favorite and the only primer that I use for all of my foundations, but it did not work well with the drops. 

Customizable drops is an interesting concept, because I have to have at least one other product to make this product work whether it's a foundation, moisturizer, primer, etc.  The cost is 44.00 USD for 0.5oz of product, which is less than the normal 1oz foundation.  Of course, the drops are pure pigment, so the bottle should last for quite some time.  I am not thrilled with the idea of mixing things; especially purchasing a high end product just for that sole purpose.  The idea seems cool enough, but I do not think it's worth it.  I will use the rest of my sample, and I will most likely mix in with my fall foundations to adjust the color.  What do you think?  Stay FABULOUS!