Snow Bunny

Hey, everyone! Remember me? I guess I accidentally took a Christmas break!


I took my laptop on our trip with us, but I just never pulled it out. I was busy! We went to Utah to visit my family, then we hit Orange County on the way home to visit my in-laws.

I would like to assert that we are NOT from Utah. My entire immediate family moved there because, I don’t know, they like drinking but it wasn’t challenging enough in California? Or, they like it when things are, like, grossly wholesome? I did consider the fact that they just don’t like ME. It’s hard to not entertain the possibility when everyone who lived in your childhood home all moved somewhere else, together, 12 hours from you. FINE THEN. I’LL BE RIGHT HERE.


I like my Christmases warm, my drug laws lax, and my population unimpressed.

In Utah, there is stupid snow everywhere, and you have to wear winter clothes like, socks, and pants, and shoes that aren’t flip flops. INDOORS! It’s terrible! SOCKS!? Who even? What the? It’s so much work!

Being back in Southern California was a relief. I love my family, but I miss my own bed, and my natural environment. The air in Utah is so clean, it burns the inside of my nose. I need those minerals and vitamins in the California air to keep me strong and focused. Dirty air is bad for me? I doubt it. If I breathe poison all day, I am surely stronger and more powerful than anyone who doesn’t. Try me. See what happens. Now that I’m back in California, I can punch a hole right through your chest. I was born here. I’m on some X-Mang shit, FO SHO. That’s just science, y’all!

The trip was a mixed bag, but overall, fun. I got to see all my nieces and nephews aka my darling baby children. I did that Tia work, handing out gifts and lipsticky kisses with unrestrained enthusiasm. I love to kiss those little faces, even though it’s tough to see how big they get in between visits. My two oldest kids, my nieces, just turned 8 and 10 this week, and that’s rough. I want them to stay little forever! They’ve lost those chubby baby faces, and now they like One Direction. Which is fine! I don’t begrudge anyone their generation’s boy band. I had the New Kids, my mom had the Jackson 5. We all need some non-threatening dudes at that age, it’s just nature. Then, you work your way up to peen with guitars. I went straight from Joey McIntyre to Slash, but there are usually more steps in the middle. I’m just a prodigy. (P.S. I just googled Joey from New Kids, and that fool is 40 fucking years old. How do these things happen? I need to start planning for our retirement because I guess it comes faster than you think it will.) (P.P.S. Can we all agree that Donnie had no business being in a boy band? Motherfucker was a full grown man with, like, a beard and a wood paneled study. He was old as hell. If you were a 9 year old into Donnie, you probably have hella therapy bills now. Not because of Donnie, specifically, but because you clearly have issues.)

All the family stuff was good. We had noche buenas with so much good food; enchiladas, taquitos, frijoles y arroz, salsa, GUACAMOLE MADE BY ME! Christmas with my mom is the sting of jalapeños on your fingertips and tongue, it’s hot chocolate made from Abuelita tablets. It’s Navidad! She even pulled my oldest nieces and nephew into a roughshod Nativity pageant that featured Joseph in a knockoff Gucci head wrap, and culminated with “Mary” ripping the blanket off of the doll cast as Jesus, hoisting it into the air and shouting, “BABY JESUS IS REALLY A GIRL!!!”

It wasn’t all La Raza and controversial Jesus theories though. I left California with what we thought was a stress headache that actually turned out to be a dental issue. In a stunning example of “worst case scenario while on vacation out of state” I had to make an emergency dentist’s appointment to try and get my face back in order. It did NOT go well. Turns out, I have two giant abscesses that have worked their way into my sinuses. My own teeth have conspired to erode my face bones. It’s a mess. The dentist couldn’t do all the work necessary to fix it in such a short amount of time, the day before Christmas Eve. So, he did what he could do to relieve the pain a little, wrote me a prescription for some antibiotics, and sent me on my way. It was not what I had planned for that day.

Here’s your girl on her way to the dentist:

pre dentist

And now here’s your girl post dentist:

post dentist

It wasn’t fun. It was pretty painful. But, I persevered. I’m always a little bit annoyed, so when shitty things happen, I can keep my cool and roll with it. I was drooling on myself for the rest of that night, and I was in pain off and on throughout the rest of the trip, but, at least there was an off. Before I went to the dentist, it was just nonstop on.

So, that put a little bit of a damper on our trip, but it was manageable. Plus, my parents felt really bad for me, which is extra nice. My mom was petting me a lot, and that helps. She was also making me rinse my mouth with hydrogen peroxide, which was not nice even though it helped. Gross.

After we left Utah, we drove straight through to Orange County to spend time with Jason’s family. I spent the night over there for the first time! Jason and I slept on the floor, in a spare room, with this scary thing holding down its post just inches from my head.

creepy kid

What’s he in trouble for? MURDER?! Probably!

Luckily, beautiful White Jesus was there to keep an eye on things and make sure that murder baby didn’t turn around in the night.

white jesus


Our day there was really fun too. The more time I spend with them, the more I see our life together as a family. There isn’t anything funny about that, it’s just good. I miss doing family stuff, like sprawling on couches all day and watching movies together, or hearing a whole afternoon’s worth of dad jokes. It’s hard sometimes to be so far from my family, and it makes me happy to know I can get my fix if I need it. I still have to wear a bra over there, but Imma work on that. Baby steps.

Our trip was great, but I was so happy to be home. We got in around 10:30 on Saturday night, and we basically spent most of the day yesterday asleep. I’d like to spend most of today asleep too. Vacation is so exhausting! I was going to unpack us today, but I think I’ll be ok pulling my underwear out of a suitcase for the rest of the week. It’s a slower way of unpacking. It gets the job done, it just takes a little longer.

As the cherry on top of my week, one of my favorite people in the whole known and unknown universe got engaged a couple days ago. I don’t want to make any assumptions, but I’m already pulling together makeup looks. I JUST GET SO EXCITED!!!

So, Christmas over! It’s time to get back to regular life. That’s cool. I’m ready to do it! I’m back and ready to show you guys some good stuff! I hope you guys all had a good holiday too. Did anyone get any amazing beauty related Christmas gifts? I got some perfume I really wanted, so that was a mega score. I’ll tell you all about it soon!

Birchbox, Hair, Lips

Birchbox December 2013 Review

birchbox 12:2013

I HAVE SO MUCH TO DO RIGHT NOW TO GET READY FOR CHRISTMAS. Soooo…this month’s Birchbox review is going to be quick and dirty!

hold on butts

This month’s box came later than usual, but that’s not anything. I just hate waiting! I was really looking forward to the December box, and it had a few really good things in it! Also, the box lid was different than usual, but very, very cute.

Camille Beckman Body Butter – Morelia Monarch Scent

What they said: A handcrafted formal that softens skin with shea butter, sweet almond oil, and glycerin.
What I say: The lotion formula is nice, but the scent is STRONG. I had to wash my hands because I just couldn’t take it. It’s too bad, the formula wasn’t greasy, and it was really moisturizing. But, yikes! Too much.

Klorane Gentle Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk

What they said: Award winning fan fave that absorbs grease and puts the bounce back in second day hair.
What I say: This dry shampoo was a lucky coincidence because my new color means I have to wash my hair less. I used this the day after I got my hair done, and it was really great! It gave my hair great volume, and it looked and smelled so fresh and so clean clean. I really like it! Good get!

LAQA & Co. Lil’ Lip Duo in Bossy Boots (I think!)

What they said: Megawatt color and lip-nourishing vitamin E, plus an easy to wield crayon applicator.
What I say: I’m not sure what color I got because the stick wasn’t labeled, but I think it’s Bossy Boots! Whatever color it is, I really liked this lip crayon. The color was glossy and the formula was moisturizing. It’s fun to use with that easy point and the twist up sharpener.

birchbox 12:13 lip gloss

I wore it for a few hours with minimal wear. And I was chewing my lips because I kept forgetting I was wearing color. I’m an idiot. Real world testing, I guess.

Miracle Skin Transformer SPF20 Face

What they said: This tinted hydrator color corrects, leaving a smooth airbrushed finish.
What I say: I haven’t tried this yet! I’m sorry! I was just going to put it on, but my hands still smell like lotion, and I didn’t want to transfer the scent to my face too.

bliss that’s incredi-‘peel’!

What they said: Spa grade pads that gently soothe and retexturize overnight the reveal even, radiant skin.
What I say: I haven’t used this yet either! GAH! I’m out of control!!


So that’s it! A pretty ok box. The stuff that I liked, I really liked. I’m off now to finish wrapping presents and do millions of loads of laundry. I’m only here to hit it and quit it today. Don’t act so surprised! I told you what this was at the beginning. QUICK AND DIRTY.

Get your own Birchbox HERE.


Risky Beauty Business

You guys. That new Beyonce album dropped and I fell out. But, ever since then, I’ve been on a nonstop Vitamin Bey regimen. So, now I’m stronger than ever! No lie, my abs hurt because I’ve basically been dancing for four days straight. Just nonstop booty pops.

I’ve been feeling kind of uninspired lately. This blog can be tough for me sometimes because it’s not just about makeup, it’s also about writing. It’s hard for me to bring myself to write a lackluster, bare bones post about a product when I’m just not feeling the words. I hate it, and I wish knew how to write on command, but I don’t. I try to pump out something every day, but when the creativity isn’t there, it’s just not there. I’ve been getting stagnant while product just piles up on my desk. I haven’t even used my Naked3 palette. Isn’t that sad?

When I get blah like that, everything gets blah. I’d look in the mirror and not feel like putting makeup on because my hair has been looking like butt, my eyebrows were overgrown and I’ve been dealing with a breakout. Like, fuck putting all that time into my face when my eyebrows look like that. I needed a big change to shake myself up!

You get used to doing things a certain way, you know how to make it look good, but that’s no fun forever. I always want a new look! But, what? The biggest beauty change is always hair related, right? I don’t want bangs anyone, I don’t want long hair anymore, I don’t want the coppery color anymore, but what DO I want?

That’s where I always get stuck.

Over the years, I’ve tried to adopt a detached attitude to my hair. It’s just hair. It’ll grow back, you know? So, the problem isn’t that I’m scared of cutting my hair, the problem is that I can never decide HOW to cut my hair. My friend that usually does my hair takes a hands off approach to this part. Since we’re not just customer/client, we’re also ex-coworkers, party friends, and birthday week buddies, this adds an extra layer of trickiness. She worries about taking big risks because she doesn’t want to be responsible for something I end up hating, and I want her to tell me what to do. We frequently end up at this impasse. So, with her blessing, I went to another hairdresser to try and get a different perspective. It worked out great! Working with someone who doesn’t know all my annoying client quirks was just what I needed.

I went in, took a bunch of different pictures, told her I needed something big, and man, did I get it.

blue hair


I’ve wanted a color like this for years! But, as I got into my late twenties and then my thirties, I convinced myself that I was too old. I’d look at pictures of hair colored like this, and just hem and haw. I almost didn’t go through with it this time! I’m so glad I did though! My only condition was that if my hair was going to be blue, the cut had to be sophisticated. I’m sorry, but I really do think I’m too old to pull off super long blue hair. But that’s ok! I didn’t want that anyways!

Beauty risks are so fucking scary. What if you hate it? What if it looks terrible? What if people think you look stupid? We get so stuck on the negative what ifs, that I think we forget to think about the positive ifs. Like, what if you look fucking amazing? What if a modeling scout sees you and you become a superstar? What if you love it? If nobody is telling you you can’t do something, why do we tell ourselves? We’re our own worst enemies. We’ll stand on the metaphorical edge of a big decision cliff, look down and say, “I can’t jump! What if I fall?!” But, we rarely stop to consider the possibility that we could fly. What if you could fly all along but you never knew because you never tried? That’s not just hair, that’s life, bbs! It sounds like such corny bullshit, but it’s a concept I struggle with often. It takes mighty big ovaries to step outside of our comfort zones, but it’s always worth it. Even when we fail, it’s a success, because we tried. This is dumb too, but it’s like when I decided to try being a blonde. It looked terrible, but at least I found out! I could stop wondering about it, and file it away. And really, that’s the worst that can happen. It looks bad. No big deal, everything is fixable with enough color and time!

Regrets are stupid and indecision is the worst. Sometimes, you just have to jump.


Floss Gloss, Nails, ncLA

Santa Bunny: Nail It

Today’s gift guide is for all the nail junkies. Addicts with shoe boxes and bathroom drawers full of polish bottles, who are all strung out on the smell of acetone. Poor souls who can’t walk past a colorful display without taking just a tiny hit; just a little dab, just to see what it looks like on the nail….

Pro Nail Polish Wall Rack Display

nail rack

Amazon, $28

I got one of these for myself this year, and I love it. It’s on the wall, behind my desk, and I look at it every day. I literally stare at it every day. Seeing all my polish organized like that is extremely satisfying. This would be an AWESOME gift for anyone who loves and collects nail polish. Could you imagine how well this rack would go over? If I hadn’t bought this for myself, and someone else bought it for me as a gift, I would have lost my fucking mind. I would have unwrapped it and gone totally bananas. It’s the rare gift that is both fun and functional. Usually, I despise getting logical or functional gifts, but this rack is such a polish altar, it hardly registers as actually functional. Even though it is. Also, it’s a gift that says, “Hey. I validate your life choices, and I understand your needs. Here’s a place to store all those life choices.” More than a place to store your bottles, it’s almost art. All those colors and glitters up on the wall, man, it’s good. Just remember, if you give or get a rack like this, you probably shouldn’t hang it in the bathroom. The temperature fluctuations aren’t good for the polish. 

Floss Gloss Full Set Deux

Screen Shot 2013-12-12 at 10.25.31 AM

Floss Gloss, $96

It’s no secret that I’m a huge Floss Gloss fan. I think I’ve bought every new color they’ve introduced since I found them. I’ve also bought most of the collection that came along before I knew about them. Their formula is great, and their colors are TITS. I can not get enough. Every time I get a new delivery from them that has more than one color, I end up locked in indecision for days. How do you choose? I wish I had more hands!! I have toes, but they’re gross. I mean, I paint my toenails, but they don’t look as fly as my fingernails; they look like little colorful shrimps. Little, cold, ashy shrimps.

Anyways! This set is a great gift for the polish aficionado in your life. You don’t have to pick a color, they get a shitload of nail polish, it’s a win win for everyone! Plus, if they don’t already know about Floss Gloss, how cool does that make you look? Extra super cool. This ain’t OPI. This is that new new indie ish. Fabulous colors, cool packaging, and it’s thoughtful. It’s thoughtful because if you buy someone all this nail polish, that frees up their cash to buy more nail polish, probably.

If you don’t want to spend $96, or if you think your nail nerd will want some of the other colors not offered in this set, Floss Gloss also has gift cards.

floss gloss card

Floss Gloss, $10-$100

These gift cards are available in amounts from $10-$100. It comes with all the same perks as the full set, the recipient will love it, you look super cool, plus, it’s so much easier to wrap!

ncLA Nail Wraps

Screen Shot 2013-12-12 at 11.14.48 AM

ncLA, $16-$18

I was way over nail wraps until ncLA came along. Then, I saw their Melody Ehsani series of wraps, and I was, like, super horny for them. Horny sounds like the wrong word, but it’s the right word. Trust. The same tingles happen when a nail junkie sees something they need.

I bought a couple different wraps from that line, and they were DOPE. The printing on the wraps is crisp, their designs are crazy fashion forward and they last forever. This is what the Melody Ehsani “Umoja” wraps looked like on my fingers:

Umoja wrap


UGH. SO FLY. Doesn’t it just make you want to slap my face?! They look so good, I want to slap my own face. Each set comes with enough wraps to do a couple manicures. And I think you could probably use the wraps that don’t fit as extra mani embellishment. I’ve been thinking of cutting down the pieces that are too big, and using them over polish to create different designs.

They have tons of different prints. They just released some really amazing transparent wraps that look soooo freaking cool. The “Jagged Edge” and “Cut Up” designs, in particular, are calling to me.

Screen Shot 2013-12-12 at 11.41.13 AM

Jagged Edge

Several wrap styles are on sale, too. The blood spatter design, “Dracula’s Bride,” is a Halloween wrap, but I would wear it year round. These wraps would make awesome stocking stuffers, and if you sign up for ncLA’s email list, you’ll get 15% off your purchase. So, that’s good! You know I love a discount!

Grab some cool gifts for your polish lover. They’ll think you’re super intuitive and ultra rad. Maybe they’ll scratch your back! Maybe not though. I don’t know what your relationship boundaries are.

Beauty Tools, Beginner, Education, Eyeshadow, Kevyn Aucoin, SALE, Smashbox

Santa Bunny: Beginner’s Bundle

Along with Fall (my birthday, Halloween, no more bathing suits), Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year. Christmas the day is whatever to me; I love giving and getting presents, but all that cooking and cleaning can get out of here. The month leading up to Christmas is awesome though! People are nicer to each other, there are lights, and songs, and ornaments, and hot cocoa, and cookies! CHRISTMAS MOVIES! I’ve already watched “Christmas Vacation,” and “Love Actually.” I’ll hit “Scrooged” and “White Christmas” sometime soon. I’m emotionally gearing up for “Miracle on 34th Street,” and I’m saving “It’s a Wonderful Life” to watch with my mom. We like to cry together over that one. Stupid George Bailey gets me every time.

So, looking forward to Christmas, and inspired by a conversation I had with a friend, I’d like to help out with your shopping. Is my gift guide late to the party? Of course it is! Late to the party is my middle name. I actually like to BE late to parties. I wait just long enough for people to start wondering if I’m coming, and then BOOM there I am, drink in hand, making all your dreams come true.

This guide is for the budding makeup artist in your life, or for anyone who wants to improve their skills and get a little education.

“Making Faces” by Kevyn Aucoin


Amazon, $16.69

I wrote about my adoration for this book a couple months ago. I’ve had my copy for nearly 15 years, and I still break it out all the time. I learned a lot about makeup application from my mom, but where her knowledge ended, this book picked it up. It’s extremely comprehensive and easy to understand, with clear instructions and pictures. Kevyn doesn’t just show you how to do eyeshadow, he shows you how to build your entire face from your bone structure up. His two makeup books are the only two I own. Nothing else comes close. “Making Faces” is an excellent guide for anyone, beginner or more experienced.

Buy “Making Faces” HERE.

Sonia Kashuk Limited Edition Lavish Luxe 10 piece Brush Set

Brush set

Target, $29.99

If you’re buying for a beginner, you probably want to get them brushes that are nice, but not too expensive. This Sonia Kashuk set fits the bill perfectly. Are they the most high quality, makeup artist level brushes in the world? No. But, they’re pretty nice. Every Sonia Kashuk brush I have has stood up to frequent use and cleanings without any problems. This set is a good place to start building a brush collection. It has everything a beginner should need, and some stuff they’ll probably have to figure out. That’s fun though! That’s learning! I bought a set of brushes in beauty school almost 10 years ago that had a weird shaped brush in it. I never could figure it out until just this year! Mystery solved! The new artist in your life will get a lot of use out of these brushes, and they’ll be glad to not have to use those weird sponge foam tipped applicator things. Do they even put those in makeup anymore? Am I showing my age? Wait. Does pantyhose still come in eggs? Does anybody wear pantyhose anymore?! The internet sure has changed everything!

It doesn’t look like this brush set is available online, but they have it in store. At Target’s site, you can search the stores close to you for specific products, so that makes things easy.

Find the Sonia Kashuk Lavish Luxe Brush Set HERE.

Smashbox Wondervision Mega Palette

Screen Shot 2013-12-10 at 10.02.46 AM

Ulta exclusive, $39.00

I JUST reviewed this palette last week, and it’s on sale now! How fortuitous! Last week, I talked about how I thought this palette would be fantastic for beginners, anyone who wants to expand their options without spending a lot of money, and anyone who struggles with palettes in general. I stand by all of that! With 30 shadows, 3 blushes and 1 bronzer, it’s got almost everything you’d need to start learning. The colors are wide ranging and beautifully coordinated with different finishes and consistencies. The palette even comes with clear, plastic instructional cards you place over the shadows to learn how to apply different eyeshadow looks. It was a great deal at $49, it’s a KILLER deal at $39. Plus, right now, with any $30 Smashbox purchase at Ulta, you get deluxe sample sizes of their fab Classic Primer and Photo Op Eye Brightening Mascara. Even better!

Buy the Smashbox Wondervision Mega Palette exclusively at Ulta HERE.

Throw in a couple of lipsticks or lip glosses. NYX and E.L.F. both have cheap, but good lip products. And right now there are tonnnnns of lipstick and gloss sets that are crazy cheap. Add in some brush cleanser because it’s never too early to learn to keep your tools clean and well maintained! You can get everything I’ve shown here for $85. So you can get a couple lippies and a cleanser and still keep it under $100. This will all make for a good start, and a happy makeup lover!

Fave Looks, Floss Gloss, Nails

Floss Gloss Selena Corpus Crystalina Review and Pics

floss gloss selena bottle

Floss Gloss, $8

Ever since Floss Gloss released their Selena tribute color, I’ve been yearning for it. I finally picked it up during their Black Friday sale, and even though it’s been a while since I’ve used any glitter on my nails, I am BEYOND excited to be wearing this polish. For reasons that are about to become clear, it’s been a really great morning for my hands.

Selena Corpus Crystalina is a sheer white glitter with a brilliant holographic sheen. In the bottle, it’s pretty, but on the nail, it really shines. I used three coats of polish to swatch the color by itself, and I wanted to keep adding layer after layer because with every new coat, it became sparklier.

floss gloss selena swatch

I was having an impossible time trying to get this polish to do its thing in photographs. I wanted to show all the colors that glittered everywhere, but my camera was just not having it. I tried doing it in different light, and at different angles, but nothing I tried made it easier to capture the way this polish looks like rhinestones. I needed something behind it to set it off.

Then I had the most brilliant idea I’ve ever had!!!!!!! A brilliant idea to show off the color of this beautiful polish, while also showing my love for Selena.

Seriously. I thought of this, and I went crazy. I ran to my polish rack and my eyes instantly fell on the exact color I needed. The perfect color to show how this polish sparkles like crystals on, oh, I don’t know, let’s say…AN ICONIC PURPLE JUMPSUIT.

floss gloss selena jumpsuit nails

Selena Corpus Crystalina over Sally Hansen’s Plum Luck

BEST IDEA I’VE EVER HAD!!! I was doing this manicure, and I was dizzy the whole time. That’s how giddy I was over my idea!! Like, shaking with excitement! Selena has a really special place in my heart. It’s so tragic we were never able to see how far she could go. She was so talented, beautiful and charismatic…I’m choking up. I can hardly even watch the movie without bawling my eyes out the whole time. When Selena and Chris see each other for the first time, after his makeover, and they instantly fall in love, it’s more romantic to me than anything else I’ve ever seen!

floss gloss selena jumpsuit diptich


I was planning on only doing one hand since I have other colors to swatch, but now that I see it, there’s no way I’m doing that. I am fully doing the other hand, at least for the weekend. The only reason I haven’t done it yet is because I wanted to rush in here and show you guys what I did.

I love this polish. LOVE IT. It has enabled what might possibly be my greatest manicure of all time. Who knows when I’ll have another idea as good as this?

I did not set out to create amazing Selena tribute nails when I woke up this morning. Clearly, the angels have touched me today.

Buy Selena Corpus Crystalina by Floss Gloss HERE.

Beginner, Eyeshadow, Face, How-To, Smashbox

Smashbox Wonder Vision Mega Palette

smashbox wonder vision palette

Ulta exclusive, $49

WHEW! This palette was a chore to swatch and photograph. It’s really hard to shoot a picture of a mirror without capturing your own reflection. Have you ever caught your own face in a reflective surface before you had to time to prepare yourself? Yuck, right? It’s like that, but instead of being a passing glance, it’s there on your camera roll so you can really look at how squishy your chin looks.

Photography problems aside, I’ve been having so much fun with this palette! It’s been sitting in front of my mirror since I brought it home, and I’ve used it almost every time I’ve done my makeup since then. It’s the first non-Naked palette I’ve bought in a long time, and with 30 shadows, 3 blushes, and a bronzer, I think it’s a good buy.

This post is going to be long on photos, maybe short on words. We’ll see. I never set out to write most of the stuff I end up posting.

smashbox wonder vision inside

smashbox wonder vision interior

This palette contains a wide array of colors and finishes, and they’re all coordinated to make putting together looks easier. I tried to swatch all the colors on my arm, but, they didn’t show up like I’d hoped. This is the first time I’ve swatched a whole palette! Bear with me!

smashbox wonder vision swatch 1

smashbox wonder vision 2

smashbox wonder vision 3

Most of the colors were very easy to work with, the exception being some of the matte, light colored shadows. A couple of them took a few more swipes of the brush to get them to show up bright, but that’s ok. They were still manageable, and I didn’t go, “Eww. No.” Which I’ll totally do! It wasn’t even close to a deal breaker for me. I’ll take a buildable color over a garish mess any day. Those couple of semi-sheer shadows were nothing when you put them with the rest of the shadows in this palette. The satin, and shimmery shadows were absolutely gorgeous. They blended nicely and the color payoff was great. The silver, in particular, was soooo pretty.

I know a lot of people are intimidated by palettes. I’ve heard from two people just in the last week that they don’t know where to start with palettes, they aren’t sure how to use them, so they just don’t buy them. I understand that. That makes me sad though because palettes can be a really great buy. They’re particularly great if you want to expand your makeup collection without spending a lot of money. This Smashbox palette has 30 shadows in it for $49. Their eyeshadow trios contain colors that are just a touch bigger than the shadows in this palette, and those are $28. I think this palette would be great for beginners, or anyone who gets overwhelmed by their choices because Smashbox has made this palette very easy to use. Besides the coordinated colors, it comes with four clear plastic cards that show you how to combine colors to achieve a more in depth look. They’re really cool because you just place them over the colors you want to wear, and you can see exactly which colors you should be using where.

smashbox wonder vision card

Isn’t that rad?! I used the cards myself a few times to check them out, and the directions were clear and easy to handle. It’s a good way to learn a little more about how to apply shadows. Once you get the hang of it using the cards, you’ll probably feel more confident on your own with other shadows!

These are a couple looks I’ve done with this palette since I’ve had it. I don’t always take pictures in front of my lights and backdrop every time I do my makeup, we’d never get out of the house if I did. But, I did grab a couple. The first one is primarily silver, and the second one uses the rust colored shadows show above.

smashbox wonder vision look1

smashbox wonder vision look2

Sorry about the lighting in the last photo. I didn’t intend to use this picture here, I was just looking at my own face. You know how in Clueless, when Cher is picking out outfits, she says she always takes polaroids because she doesn’t trust mirrors? It’s the same thing as that. I catch things that need to blended or touched up all the time like this. Plus, I like  any opportunity to look at a good picture of myself!

The blushes are nice, they’re also buildable, so that’s good. I think a lot of people prefer that in a blush. The bronzer is GREAT. It isn’t shimmery, so it’s good for contouring. I’ve been using it to bring up my cheekbones, and I love it. I predict I’ll hit the pan on the bronzer, actually.

This palette is a good buy financially and artistically. It has colors that can take you to a lot of different places with a lot of different looks. It makes application easy to understand, and easy to do. It would be really good for traveling. Wait. Do other people travel like I do? Does this seem like a lot to bring with you? I don’t think it does. You could slip this in between a couple of shirts, no problem. Then, you’d have neutrals and bright colors for whatever you wanted to do! It’s so easy!

Buy the Smashbox Wonder Vision Mega Palette exclusively at Ulta HERE.

Beauty Tools, Beginner, Eyeliner, How-To

Cat Eye Tips


Look. I’m a little bit of a bullshitter when I need to be. I think I might be the World’s Smartest Lady, so I’m usually pretty confident in my ability to figure things out. I’ll fake it until I make it. Unless I think I can’t make it, then I’m all, “This is stupid!” and I quit. Who needs to keep at something stupid? Also, I can dish it out, but I can’t take it. That piece of info is neither here nor there, but, I thought since I was freely discussing the worst parts of my personality, it was worth mentioning.

What I am not faking is my ability to do a killer cat eye. I wasn’t always good though. I’ve spent lots and lots of time making a huge mess of my eyelids. But, at this point, I’ve been working at it for 15 years, so it doesn’t intimidate me anymore. I can bang out an even, perfect line in just a couple minutes. It’s extremely satisfying, and I want that feeling for you too.

I thought I’d share a couple tricks I use that might help you achieve a cat eye!

1. Draw the tail first! That’s the hardest part, but it’s easier if you do it first, and then connect it to the rest of the line. You can always build if you need to, but you’ll have a good line to follow. Pick a static, easy to find spot you can match to the other side, and start the end of your tail there. Like, line up the end of your tail under the end of your eyebrow, then do the same thing on the other side.

2. Do your bad eye before you do your good eye. You guys know what I mean, right? Your dominant hand will be the same side as your good eye. I’m sure you’ve already figured that out though. It’s way easier to match a good eye to a bad eye than it is to do it the other way around. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve drawn a beautiful cat eye on the right side, only to draw a completely different cat eye on the left side. It’s so annoying. That’s how you start down the slippery slope of, “I’m just going to even this up a little!” You know where that gets you. Nowhere good.

3. Start with a thin line. You can make it thicker little by little. This is self explanatory.

4. If you really struggle with liquid liner, consider switching to a gel liner with an angled brush. Years and years ago, when I would still take half an hour to do my liner, Benefit came out with a thin, angled eyeliner brush that totally revolutionized the cat eye for me. I used it for a long time, and it made my eyeliner so much easier, it was ridiculous. After I went back to liquid liner, I didn’t really have the same struggles. Those brushes are like liquid liner training wheels.

sonia liner brush

This one is available at Target for $5.99. I have it, and it’s solid. The angle makes it much easier to see what you’re doing, and it feels more natural in your hand. Get a little pot of liner, and you’re good to go!

5. PRACTICE! Like I’ve said here before, you might be bad at something the first few times you try it, but you probably won’t be bad on your twentieth time. If you have the time and attention span, do your cat eye, wipe it off, and do it again. Or, do it on days you don’t have anywhere to be. The experience adds up, especially if you’re working at it regularly.

These are the best tips I can think of right now. Keep at it and you’ll grab that cat by the tail, I promise

I hope these tricks help!

Maintenance, Nails, Nails Inc.

Nails Inc. Kensington Caviar Base Coat

nails inc base coat

Sephora, $10

I’ve never had loyalty to a base coat like I do to my beloved top coat. I sort of just pick up whatever tickles my fancy at the time, and use it until I need a new one. A base coat has to be really bad or really good for me to notice any kind of difference between brands. Since I’m writing about this base coat, that has to mean it falls under one of those two categories.



I bought this on sort of a whim during the Sephora Friends & Family sale a few weeks ago. I was scraping the bottom of the barrel on my old bottle, and I was looking for something well reviewed that wasn’t too expensive. This Nails Inc. Kensington Caviar base coat easily fit the bill. I’ve been wearing it for nearly two weeks now, and it far exceeds any expectations I had.

I wore it under a highly pigmented, creamy black polish last week, and my manicure looked chip free for nearly the whole week. That’s pretty good. Through dishes, lots of typing, thoughtful/nervous/compulsive head scratching, and all my everyday dog and husband stuff, it held on. It also lasted through my cuticle chewing. Between the spit and the teeth scraping, most base coats give up the goat there, so the tops of my manicures are usually the first places to show chipping. I know that’s gross, and I’m sorry. It’s just one of the best ways I can illustrate the strength of this base coat.  It’s also the reason why I think I don’t catch common sicknesses very often. I always have my fingers in my mouth, so I think I’ve built up an immunity to, like, the germs that are on escalator handrails. OR, that could be how I caught Whooping Cough a couple year ago. I don’t think so though. I’m pretty sure I caught The Whoop from a coughing hooker who sat on the bench next to me inside a laundromat in Hollywood. She was not big on covering her mouth when she coughed.

Anyways. I didn’t mean to take you guys on a guided tour of my medical history there. You know how these things go, set out to write about a great base coat, end up telling everyone about the time you got Whooping Cough! That old chestnut.

Besides the great grip this base coat had on my polish, it also kept the color from staining my nails way better than my old base coat did. The black I was wearing stains like crazy, but it didn’t touch my nails. The skin around my nails was a mess when I took the polish off, but my nails were pretty clean.

Since I removed the black polish, I’ve been wearing the base coat alone. It dries really shiny, and it has a light pink color that looks pretty without anything else.

nails inc base coat swatch

If there’s a way to photograph your fingers WITHOUT them looking like sausages, I haven’t found it. 

Lovely! As you can see, my nails are pretty long and strong right now. I’m chalking that up to this base coat too. The consistency of it is unlike other base coats. It isn’t thin, it’s sort of thick and almost gelatinous. I like that! It makes me feel like my nails are getting a good treatment. After making sure my nails were good and clean, I used two coats of base coat, and put it underneath the tips of my nails, too. I don’t know if it’s the caviar element, or what, but my nails aren’t splitting on the sides like they usually do when they get this long. I keep accidentally jabbing them into things, and I feel them bend, and I think they’ll for sure have a tear on the side, but I’m always wrong! It’s great! Despite the relative thickness of the formula, it goes on easily without any dragging or unevenness. It dries quickly to a super smooth finish that really makes a great, even base for your manicures.

Base coats are important if you want to maintain your at home mani. Don’t skip this step! If you don’t use a base coat, start using one. You’ll see a difference!

I love this base coat. I think you’ll love it too, especially if you have problems with nail breakage. I’m totally going to buy it again!

Buy Nails Inc. Kensington Caviar Base Coat HERE.

Bargain Beauty, Upcoming

Black Friday Spoils!

I’m not a black Friday shopper. Going to stand in line in the cold, after I’ve stuffed myself with Thanksgiving sounds so terrible. I can only assume that the entire area out in front of Best Buy, on Thursday night, smells like turkey farts. Maybe some people are into that kind of thing, but I ain’t. It doesn’t sound fun, it sounds like my nightmare. So, yeah. I won’t do that.

What I will do is set my alarm for 5:45 AM, drop my phone trying to shut off the alarm, get out of bed, stumble into my office, and fight other beauty aficionados online for a piece of a limited supply of heavily discounted lipstick. All with my boobs out. That’s what I did on Friday morning, and I was able to score one of Urban Decay’s insane black Friday deals. They had a bundle of six of their gorgeous Revolution lipsticks on sale for $50!! That’s $132 worth of lipstick for $50!! I’m getting lightheaded just remembering it. Apparently, there was a super short supply of this deal. I don’t know how I was able to make it happen, but I did. I’m like one of those people at Target who manages to get one of the two $60 big screen TVs, right? Everyone tries to get them, but nobody can get them. Well, I got the makeup equivalent of that. Eat it, everyone else! I’m a champion! Also, I’m a sore winner. Everyone else doesn’t have to eat it, but I’m still a champion. I actually do feel bad for the people who weren’t able to get this bundle. I know what that feels like, it’s frustrating.

I also got a TON of stuff from Coastal Scents. I haven’t tried anything from them yet, but everyone else seems to be a fan. I picked up a bunch of 99 cent eyeshadows, discounted brushes, and a palette to hold the shadows. That sale is still going on. Everything on their site is 50% off. So, it’s a good time to grab crazy colored shadows you might not risk otherwise and stock up on brushes.

Floss Gloss was having a sale on Friday night, and I was finally able to pick up their Selena tribute color! I’ve been whimpering about this polish ever since they released it a couple weeks ago. I can’t wait to try it! They’re having a Cyber Monday sale today, so if you’ve been a fan of any of the colors I’ve swatched here, today is a good day to grab them for 30% off.

Whew! I was on a rampage! My credit card is smoking! Look for alllll this and more coming up soon! Also, look for my beautiful face shining upon all of you when I get all this new stuff in. I can’t wait for it to start showing up. The FedEx truck pulls up, and I get goosebumps. In my bra. Haha! Just kidding! I’m not wearing a bra! DOWN WITH BIG UNDERWIRE!