Archive of ‘Beauty’ category

7 Affordable Winter Beauty Picks for Fair Skin

7-affordable-winter-beauty-picksSo yesterday I gave you a peek inside my $5 newly organized bathroom drawer. Today I wanted to share a roundup of my must-have beauty items to see Winter through to Spring. I’m super-pale and have strawberry blonde hair, so the color palette I use most days is very light creams and beiges, with a bit of baby pink thrown in. Subtle and understated, and isn’t too thick to cover up my freckles. Plus, I’m always on a budget and looking for a steal…so none of these items will break the bank. Here are 7 of my faves:

1. Sonia Kashuk Brow Definer

It took me forever to find the right-colored eyebrow pencil for my super-light eyebrows. They all looked harsh or weird. This one is warm-toned, but not overly so, and stays and stays.

Fair Skin/Light Hair: Taupe 09

2. Sally Hansen Lip Inflation Plumping Lip Gloss

I LOVE this lip gloss – it adds shine, sheen, and has enough light pink color to counteract even the darkest lips (like mine which are beetroot red). This gloss evens them out, plumps them, and is just my fave. I prefer the original, not the Xtreme version. It’s a little hard to find now. Look for it at Target or your local grocery store, or buy here.

Fair Skin: Sheer Pink

3. Physicians Formula Nude Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Shadow

The perfect nude eye shadows to do a very subtle gradient. When I’m in a rush, just a couple dabs of the lightest shimmer under the browbone pulls the whole look together and adds sophistication without any other work.

Fair skin: Natural Nude

4. YOUNIQUE Moonstruck 3D Fiberlashes

I wrote a review of this product earlier this year and I just love it. It adds so much length and gorgeousness…like Kim Kardashian except better.

5. L’Oreal Visible Lift CC Cream

Keeps my skin glowy and moisturized even through dry, harsh weather. And feels weightless when on.

Fair skin: Light/Medium formulation

6. Sephora Double Contouring Cream Blush

This color is great because it’s buildable (from sheer to intense), and bright – looks just like pinched cheeks on a cold, cold day. I adore it with silvery eye makeup for that ice queen look.

Fair skin: No 03 Poppy Pink

7. Laura Mercier Secret Concealer

For concealer you should make an investment: it needs to have staying power, be creamy, and have enough coverage to really cover those dark circles. This is the perfect hue for someone with super-light skin like myself, and it actually makes me look wide awake because of the orange undertones.

Fair skin: Color 1

All these colors aren’t to say people with darker coloring wouldn’t look good in them! I’m not trying to exclude anyone at all – these are just my favorite products for a sheer and natural Winter look.



FTC Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means I make a small commission if you click and buy something through one of the links above. My full Disclosure Policy is here.

Probiotics: Good for Your Gut, Great for Your Skin: Meet TULA

tula2You’ve all heard of probiotics, right? Those excellent-for-you bacteria that keep your gut (and the rest of you!) healthy and functioning? Well, taking probiotics internally for optimum health has been a part of many cultures for centuries (with culinary traditions of kefir, natto, miso, sauerkraut, and kimchee, for example)…but how about taking probiotics externally? Would the same benefits we experience when consuming probiotics also come into play when applied to our skin? (more…)

Cool Find: YOUNIQUE Moodstruck 3D Fiber Lashes For Extra Oomph! for Your Eyelashes

0.younique_introphotoI received an inquiry from a company called YOUNIQUE earlier this month, who sent me a set of their Moonstruck 3D Fiber Lashes to try out. I have to admit: I was a bit skeptical at first, since I couldn’t exactly see how fiber lashes that were sprinkled on top of one’s already existing mascara could really make much difference. I mean, was this extra step in the beauty routine really necessary? But once I tried them out I became a believer – and you will too once you see these AMAZING before & after photos. (more…)

Review: Beauty Box 5 and Its Products

beautybox5_1 I was contacted by Beauty Box 5 to see if I could do a review of their monthly beauty subscription box service. I immediately agreed (after all, who doesn’t like free beauty items?!) and they sent me a customized box in December.

My BB5 box came with Coolway Cool Cleanse & Hydrate Shampoo and Conditioner, be a…bombshell Eyeshadow in Bora Bora, Spongeables Pedi Scrub Foot Buffer, and NUBAR Nail Lacquer in Blondie. Here’s what I thought:

Coolway Cool Cleanse & Hydrate Shampoo and Conditionerbeautybox5_coolwayshampoo

I was glad that I received both the shampoo + conditioner in the box (sometimes you only get sent one or the other and it makes it tough to tell if it works). The duo smells spicy and minty, with a fairly light texture. Once my hair dried, I could tell it was shiny and there seemed to be fewer flyaways…but I love messy volume and texture so these weren’t my favorite.

be a…bombshell Eyeshadow in Bora Borabeautybox5_eyeshadow

This eyeshadow from be a…bombshell is a bright teal: a beautiful turquoise blue with a green shimmer to it. It’s very, VERY pigmented and bright. Normally I don’t go for a ton of bright eyeshadow, but this is a fun one even just used as a thin liner close to the eyes. I have to do a full face of makeup to feel even remotely comfortable wearing it, but it is quite a head-turner and long-lasting.

Spongeables Pedi-Scrub Foot Bufferbeautybox5_pediscrub

I think this was my favorite product in the box: this little workhorse of a foot scrubber from Spongeables. Besides it being so well-timed (my feet are definitely feeling ravaged by Winter lately!) it smells amAHzing: soapy and vaguely floral. It lathers up quickly and scrubs efficiently, all while releasing that lovely scent. My feet never felt so pampered! (I was sad that the trial size I received only lasts 5 uses…this full-sized versionlasts a good 15 uses before you have to dispose of it.

NUBAR Nail Lacquer in Blondiebeautybox5_nubar

This glitter polish from NUBAR is great – LOVE that it is vegan and cruelty-free. It has scattered glitter in large hexagons and small dots – that ranges from light gold to light turquoise depending on the angle. Two coats is what it took to get the coverage above – and I found it was quite easy to take off with a nail polish remover (no scrubbing or soaking like some glitters).

So is Beauty Box 5 worth it?

Starting from $12, Beauty Box 5 subscription plans are one of the most affordable out there, and deliver 5 beauty samples and products each month from drugstore, vegan, and luxury brands. (For only $30 you receive a subscription for 3 months!) You specify your personality and beauty issues and you receive a personalized selection each month. Every month there is always 1 full-sized product in the box, so the monthly subscription pays for itself.

If you love trying new beauty products and especially like vegan or cruelty-free brands, I’d recommend trying our Beauty Box 5. Every single item in the box may not be a keeper, but it’s certainly fun to try new things – and is way less than a splurge at Sephora. Plus, you’re bound to come across a new product or favorite brand that you find you just can’t live without. :-)

Check Out Beauty Box 5


FTC Disclosure: I was sent a Beauty Box 5 with 5 products in it for review purposes. The above opinions are my own. I have not received compensation for this post. To read my full Disclosure Policy, click here.

My All Natural Style Secrets: A Look at My Daily Beauty Routine

allnaturalbeautyproducts_chicstealsAs I’ve gotten older, I’ve become more conscious of not only what I put in my body (favoring organic, responsibly-produced, ethically-farmed, and natural products whenever possible)…but also what I put on my body. The skin being the largest organ means that what it absorbs truly makes a difference in not only how you feel, but also the toxic load placed on your entire system. (more…)

Max Your Morning with Vaseline Spray & Go Moisturizer – and Win a $1,000 SpaFinder Gift Card!



We’re all busy. Life can be totally hectic sometimes, and it’s easy to let one’s beauty routine fall by the wayside, especially when you’re in a rush. Besides being a full-time fashion and DIY blogger and freelancing in graphic design and illustration, I’m also a full-time mom to a rambunctious 7 year-old. It seems no matter how early we get up in the morning, we always end up in the car 20 minutes late to get my little one to school. Body lotion is the last thing on my mind in those precious few minutes I have to get ready.


But summer’s here, and I want to walk around in breezy dresses, shorts, and shorter skirts. My legs are nowhere near summer-ready and I am way behind on starting a moisturizing routine, but I’m still in a rush and honestly quite lazy when it comes to beauty. The more hands-off and fuss-free, the better!


That’s why Vaseline® Spray & Go Moisturizer appealed to me from the very first commercial I saw (I tried the Total Moisture® variant, specifically). Spray it? Go? Instant absorption? Sounds like Vaseline just cut moisturizing time in half. It’s super easy to use–same concept as using hairspray or spray-on sunblock–just uncap, aim, and spray.



The moisturizer is actually more of a lightweight lotion (with a multi-layer moisture complex), and I was surprised by how quickly it absorbed into my skin. Before, I would apply body lotion (when I would remember to) at night after my bath, but with Vaseline Spray & Go Moisturizer I can just add it into my morning routine and have healthy, moisturized skin all day without the mess.


To apply, you just spray up, switch hands, spray down, and then rub in (“Up, Switch, Down, Rub”). After spraying it on and rubbing it in, I put on a pair of jeans within 3 minutes and my legs weren’t sticking to the inside of the jeans–an awesome improvement.


And I was surprised that my legs were still soft and gleaming–even when I got in the bath about 8 hours later in the evening, when the water beaded wherever I had applied the moisturizer.


Vaseline Spray & Go Moisturizer comes in three variants: Total Moisture, which contains pure oat extract and leaves skin feeling healthy and soft skin (pictured)Aloe Fresh, which contains pure aloe and leaves skin feeling healthy and fresh, and Cocoa Radiant, which contains cocoa butter and leave feeling healthy and skin glowing.


And yes, although I am still rushed in the morning, it’s not that big of a deal to just spray the moisturizer onto my legs before slipping into jeans.


Soon…I’ll be slipping into shorts. ;-)


Sweepstakes: Win a $1,000 SpaFinder Gift Card


Tell me!  How would Vaseline Spray & Go Moisturizer maximize your morning? Each comment will automatically be entered for a chance to win a $1,000 SpaFinder gift card. Entries will be pooled from participating blogs and one winner chosen.


Sweepstakes Rules:
No duplicate comments.

You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post

For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winner  will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.


The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 7/1/13 – 7/31/13.

Be sure to visit the Vaseline® Spray & Go page on where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!


To learn more about Vaseline Spray & Go Moisturizer visit their Facebook Page!


Good luck to everyone!

xo Carly


FTC Disclosure: This post is part of a paid campaign with Vaseline® and BlogHer. I received compensation for the post, and a sample of Vaseline Spray & Go Moisturizer Total Moisture. All opinions are my own. My Disclosure Policy is here.



DIY Healthy Natural Coconut Oil Stick Deodorant

0.diynaturaldeodorant_introI ran out of my old deodorant awhile ago, and was wondering what to do about it. I had been hearing a lot about “natural” deodorants, and wondered if they worked any better than store-bought.  With all-natural ingredients and no aluminum, they are undoubtedly better for you.  I found some links to various recipes here, changed some ingredients to create a stick-type product, and decided to try my hand at making my own DIY version.  Here’s how:

Recipe: (more…)

The 8 Must-Have Makeup Colors For Spring

spring2013beautymusthavesSpring is just around the corner!  I am so excited to leave Winter’s grip once and for all…and hope that the rainy weather here in Portland will soon give rise to beautiful bursts of flowers (especially in my garden: my black tulips are beginning to show!!)

Along with a change in season comes a change in makeup colors: hues become softer and more pastel…or brighter and more neon.  The Pantone Color Report for Spring 2013 includes citrus hues of nectarine, lemon, and spring green, along with violet, emerald, cobalt blue, and robin’s egg.


In addition to these colors, old-school 1980’s holographic silvers, as well as clear and neon plastic, are all over the accessory collections this season.  Here are the 8 must-have colors to play with in your makeup for the coming season…


1. Nail Foil on a Roll in Ice-Blue Crush, $1 per 5 ft. roll  /  2.  CoverGirl Smoky ShadowBlast in Intense Blue, $6.94  /  3. Astrogirl Prismatic Eyeshadow Quad, $35  /  4.  BareMinerals Blush in Vintage Peach, $19  /  5. Makeup For Ever Rouge Artist Intense in 42, $19

6. Sephora + Pantone Universe Lightspeed Glitter Dust in Emerald, $14 /  7.  Sultra Hair Extensions in Cyprus Lilac Solid, $9  /  8. LimeCrime Opaque Lipstick in My Beautiful Rocket, $15.99

What do you guys think?  Is color something you’re going to play with in your makeup this season?



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