Monday, December 1, 2014

High-End Holiday Wishlist

Happy December, everyone! 

If you're like me your friends, boyfriend/spouse, parents, sister/brother, etc are all asking you what you want for Christmas. and the obvious answer is, of course, MAKEUP. you know you've been wanting that palette or mascara, and now is the time of year when you don't have to pay for it. So make a Sephora or Ulta wishlist and pass it along. And if you're stumped, here are my ideas for a high-end Christmas wishlist:



1. The Naked Palettes - these will always remain favorites of mine. they're a great collection of earth-toned neutrals with a range of matte/pearl/shimmery shades, and a good balance between warm and cool tones. if I had to choose I'd tell you to pick the original Naked palette or Naked 2. Naked 3 has mostly pinks and isn't that great for beginners. See my review here. (retail at $54 each)

2. High End Mascaras - the three pictured are my absolute favorites that I repurchase often. Urban Decay Perversion ($22), Benefit They're Real ($23), and Tarte Lights, Camera, Action ($20). These are all great for different reasons, and tomorrow I'm going to do a post comparing the 3! Stay tuned!

3. High End Primers - I never used to be a primer girl, but I've been having some major skin issues lately and foundation is pretty much keeping me sane. and in order to hide my bad skin and scars (yes. scars. never had that problem. I am a mess.) primers have been VITAL to keeping my foundation long-lasting. I've been using these two over and over and love them both and definitely think that they're worth the investment. The first is Benefit POREfessional ($31) and Smashbox Photo Finish Oil Free Pore Minimizing Primer ($39). Expensive but SO worth it. 

4. Lorac Pro Palette - another well-loved palette. this one is great because the entire top row is matte shades, and the bottom is shimmery/pearl shades. these colors are so pigmented and allow you to make tons of different looks. see my more in-depth review here

5. IT Cosmetics Brushes for Ulta, 'Your Superheroes' Set - I love IT brushes, and before they were hard to find unless you ordered from QVC or online-retailers; but now they have created a line for Ulta and I was so excited to get my hands on them! This set includes a powder, foundation, crease, concealer, shadow, and a brow/liner brush. Its a great set with pretty much everything you need and only retails at $50!

I hope this gave you some ideas! I'd love to hear what's on your holiday wish list :) 
-Katie
Friday, October 10, 2014
just a quick little update to show off my nails.. In honor of the Orioles going to the ALCS!!! :D
I know, I know.. sports & beauty blogging don't really go together.. but I am SO PUMPED FOR THIS SERIES and had to do something a little girly to show that #IBackTheBirds :)

Obviously if you aren't an Orioles fan, these may not excite you, but use the inspiration for your own sports themed nails! 


Sunday, September 14, 2014


I feel like the coconut oil 'trend' has been circulating for a while now.. but that's a good thing! because coconut oil is SO good for you. it's all natural, obviously, and I use it to cook with all the time. but did you know that coconut oil can be used for WAY more than cooking? its amazing for your skin, hair, lips, etc. here are the many ways to use it in your beauty routine. if you have any other ideas, let me know and I'll add it to my list!

1. lip moisturizer - it feels great on your lips and makes them feel so soft and look so shiny. tip: carry some in your purse in a tiny container and use it all day! 

2. foot scrub - mix a little with some sea salt and use as an exfoliate for your feet, then rinse.  

3. foot moisturizer - after you do the scrub from above, put a bit more coconut oil (without the sea salt) on your feet, put on some socks, and let it 'marinate' all night long. soft feet!

4. deep conditioning hair treatment - put a bit in the palms of your hands and work it through your hair, focusing mainly on the ends. place it in a bun on top of your head and pop a shower cap over your head. let it sit overnight and voila! 

5. body moisturizer - rub it directly on your skin after showering, like a lotion/in place of baby oil

6. eye makeup remover -  believe it or not, just (gently) rub a small amount onto your eyes/eyelashes to remove stubborn waterproof makeup

7. sunburn care - it not only helps to sooth the burnt skin, it repairs the burnt skin cells as well, allowing it to heal much faster

8. body scrub - sort of like the foot scrub, but instead, mix it with sugar. its a great exfoliator! just rinse off in the shower

9. facial moisturizer - just use a small amount just as you would a normal moisturizer

10. cuticle softener - apply to your cuticles to to hydrate and strengthen nails

11. shaving cream - just rub all over your legs, shave, and rinse! then you might as well re-apply to your legs to keep them soft!

12. eye cream - use a thin layer on the delicate tissue around your eyes to prevent wrinkles and sagging.

13. anti-frizz treatment - rub a dime-sized amount of the oil on the ends of your hair to hydrate and tame frizz.

14. after-wax treatment - just get a wax? dab a bit to the area after to help sooth and calm the skin and prevent ingrown hairs.

15. make your own soap - find the recipe here.

16. cold sore prevention - mix with oil of oregano and use at the first sight of a cold sore.

17. strengthen eyelashes & growth - use a clean mascara wand and brush onto eyelashes before bed.

18. make your own anti-frizz hair spray - find the recipe here.

19. static reducer - rub a tiny bit through your palms and run through hair to reduce static.

20. tanning oil - put some coconut oil in a spray bottle and bring to beach.. spray on to keep skin moisturized!

in case you're wondering, I get mine from WalMart.. although I'm sure you can find it any store with all the other cooking oils.
got any other ideas? let me know!

Friday, August 8, 2014
hey guys! have you been on the fence about what products you should toss, and which products have a little bit more life to them? here's a helpful guide on when to keep and when to toss!
xoxox -k


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Nars vs Elf- Dupes!

I love to splurge every once and a while- and Nars is one of those brands that is so fun to splurge on. I love their packaging and even the racy names of their blushes, lip glosses, etc.. but I also love a good bargain. Elf has some of the best quality, low priced makeup on the market; and while they do have some 'misses' every once and a while- their blush is definitely a 'hit'. So I compiled a list of a couple dupes for you to try out. Enjoy!

Nars Angelika -- Elf Fuchsia Fusion
Nars Deep Throat -- Elf Candid Coral
Nars Desire -- Pink Passion

hope you all have an amazing week! go put some color on those cheeks! ;-)
-K

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Knowing your skin's undertone is really important when buying and applying makeup. I think its something that we tend to overlook, and to be honest, figuring out whether you're warm or cool toned can be a bit intimidating. But I'm hoping this makes it a little bit easier for you. 

Keep in mind that skin tone and undertones are not the same. Your skin tone is the color on the surface. It changes all the time. It gets tan or pink when you're in the sun too long, it turns rosy when you're cold. But your undertone is the color under your skin. and it can either be cool-toned or warm-toned.

I'm warning you now, this is going to be pretty long with a lot of information jammed into one post. But keep reading to find out how to figure out if you're warm/cool toned & what that means for you when it comes to picking out makeup, clothes, and even your hair color. 

There are a few ways to test. I actually did all 3 just to be sure. 
(I'm cool toned, by the way)

Test 1: Vein Test
Look at the veins on the underside of your arm/wrist. 
If they are blue, you are cool toned.
If they are greenish, you are warm toned.
(yellow + blue makes green. veins are blue, but when viewed through skin with a yellow 
(warm) undertone, you get green! pretty cool, huh?)


Test 2: Paper Test
When your face is completely clean and at a normal temperature (you aren't overly hot or cold) hold a plain white piece of paper up to your face. 
Take note of your skin's tone in contrast to the white. If it looks yellow or golden, then you have a warm skin color. If it looks pinkish, you have a cool tone.

Test 3: Ear Test
Have someone else pull your ear forward and look behind your ear in natural light. The skin behind your ear is pure in tone and a yellowish or pinkish hue should be readily identifiable. If they see a yellow hue, then you have a warm skin tone. A pinkish tint signifies a cool tone.

So.. are you cool or warm toned? 
Were you one of the weirdos (kidding.. kind of) who had mixed results with those tests? You may be neutral which means you look good in cool and warm tones. Lucky you! 
Now that you know your undertone, here are some things to keep in mind. 

*when buying foundation always buy a shade that corresponds with your undertone. a lot of drugstore foundations now have 'cool' or 'warm' on the bottle so it makes it a lot easier. when buying high-end foundation, you may want to find an expert in the store and tell them your undertone and allow them to help you find the right shade. 

when it comes to choosing the right cosmetics for your undertone, it can be a little tricky. 
in general just remember that if you are..

warm toned: look for peachy pink, orange, coral based colors

cool toned: rosy pink, purple, blue/violet based colors


I have to admit, figuring out if a color was 'cool' or 'warm' was always a hard concept for me to grasp, and there are still times I look at a blush or foundation and have no idea what undertone it would look best with. But it does get easier and the more you do it, the more obvious it starts to become. 

I hope this was at least somewhat helpful! Have a good day everyone. :-)
-K

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

I don't know about you but I'm pretty picky about mascara. My eyeshadow and eyeliner can look amazing.. but if I'm having a 'bad lash day' as I call it, it can ruin the whole look. So I tend to stick to the mascaras I know and love. Of course I try new things all the time- you'll notice some of the mascaras on the list are ones I've never mentioned before- that's because I try new ones all the time and fall in and out of love as I continue to use them. But once I find some that I love, I use those daily and repurchase over and over again. 

I always like to mention that these are my favorite mascaras of the moment. Because I'm trying new things, I may discover a new favorite next week. So these are the ones I'm loving right this moment. Also, I consider high-end to be anything that can't be purchased at Walmart, Target, CVS, etc, and usually cost around $20 or more. And obviously 'drugstore' refers to any lower priced mascaras that can be purchased at the stores I named before. Okay, enough rambling.. here's the good stuff!

high end

1. Tarte Lights Camera Lashes ($20) - the brush is my favorite part of this mascara. its sort of short which works really well for me because I feel like I can control it a little better. I have less 'mess' (am I the only one who constantly gets globby mascara on my inner corner lid while hitting those lashes?!). it has a wetter formula than others, which I like a lot. overall this mascara is a hit all the way around. I like the formula, the brush, and how well it lengthens and volumizes. the packaging is a bit strange, but it doesn't bother me.

2. Arbonne Its a Long Story ($36) - this is my every-day mascara because it makes my lashes look long and pretty, but the best part is how easy it is to remove. there is nothing worse than feeling like you have to scrub your sensitive eye area to remove your mascara, or seeing lashes fall out as you're doing it! this is one of the best mascaras because it comes off easily and gently. it is also vegan, dermatologist, ophthalmologist, and clinically tested. so its great for those of us with sensitive eyes. it was also featured in Vanity Fair's beauty blog as one of their top 5 picks. to order contact Kristin at kristindaniels7@gmail.com

3. Benefit They're Real ($23) - I don't think I need to elaborate on this too much because this mascara is famous.. probably the most famous high end mascara. It really is great. I love the brush, formula, etc and have been using it off and on for a while now and don't have many complaints. if you're interested in trying a more expensive mascara, this would be a great one to start with, because I doubt you'll be disappointed. 

4. Mally Beauty Volumizing Mascara ($20) - I got a full size version of this in my birchbox which was exciting because I actually know people who use this and love it. and I love it as well! it isn't exceptionally lengthening but I love how thick and full my lashes look when I use it. I have to work at it a little extra to make them look as long as I like, but I don't mind because the full, thick, voluminous factor gives it a false-lash look, which I love.

drugstore

5. L'Oreal Telescopic ($10) - this is another one that I don't think I need to elaborate on too much because I've mentioned it a lot. (like here, here, and here). It has a really skinny brush, which apparently a lot of people don't like.. but I love it! it really allows you to hit every single lash and its the most lengthening mascara I've ever used. the small brush is also great for bottom lashes.

6. Maybelline Falsies ($7) - yet another mascara I've rambled about multiple times.. but hey, at least you know I really like it! (read here, here, or here). This one be my #1 all-time mascara if it wasn't so dang hard to remove! its super stubborn, which is technically a good thing because its long-lasting. but I feel like it isn't all that great for my lashes since I have to scrub so hard to remove it. so I don't use it as much as I'd like. but don't let that keep you from purchasing it because it will make your lashes look amazing. maybe I just need a better eye makeup remover? :-)

7. Maybelline The Colossal ($7) - another great every-day mascara. I really like this one for days when I'm rushing and I just want good lashes, plain and simple. its easy to apply, the formula is a great medium (not too wet, not too dry- although it was pretty wet the first day or so, then it dried up a bit, which I was happy about) and it does a great job at lengthening and volumizing. 

8. Maybelline Volum' Express Mega Plush - ($7) are you sensing a trend here with Maybelline mascaras? I like them! this is my absolute favorite mascara for natural looking lashes. you know those days when you don't want to look made up, but you feel like you need something? this mascara is that 'something'. it is so natural looking but still makes your lashes look nice and long and gorgeous. there are seriously no clumps and it gives the effect that you just have naturally long, beautiful lashes.. you can fool everyone! :-) I credit its gel-mousse formula with less hard waxes. it makes your lashes bouncy and flexible, not hard or brittle. BUY THIS MASCARA! 

best bottom lash mascara:
L'Oreal Miss Manga ($8) - this is pretty new and it took me forever to find it because it was always sold out. I've heard a lot of great things about it, so I had to try it. to be honest, I only like it for my bottom lashes. I don't like the way it looked on my top lashes at all, but that's okay because it makes my bottom lashes AMAZING. I think its the tapered, pointed brush. I don't have long bottom lashes at all, but this gives me the longest, prettiest, bottom lashes EVER. seriously, you need to buy this and try it. 

have any mascaras you think I should try? let me know!
also- would you guys want a post with pictures of the mascaras ON my lashes? it may take a week or so to be able to do that, but I'd love to try it on for you guys to show you guys how they look on. let me know! 
-katie
Tuesday, June 24, 2014

arbonne awaken sea salt scrub- why it is a summer MUST HAVE!


hey guys! I mentioned this product on my 2014 summer essentials post, but I wanted to elaborate a bit more today, especially since I can offer you a discount for next few days! (until 6/27/14)

I consider this to be a staple for summertime because I use it every. single. day. to shave. 

why I love it: no matter what razor, shower gel, shaving cream, lotion, etc I've ever used, I've never been that girl with exceptionally smooth legs. I would shave, then have to apply lotion as soon as I got out of the shower, and then again later on if I wanted the moisture to last. ever since I started using this salt scrub to shave my legs my legs look and feel AMAZING! although I like to apply lotion when I get out of the shower no matter what, I can definitely get away with skipping the lotion altogether. my legs look smooth, shiny, sexy, and they feel amazing. it exfoliates which not only gets rid of the dead skin, but allows for a closer shave. 

but its not just for shaving. it can be used all over (besides the face of course). I don't use it on my full body every day, but on days I'll be showing a little, I just use the sea salt scrub all over and love the way my skin feels and SMELLS! it leaves a non-greasy, yet moisturizing oil behind so that your skin glows. 

how to use it: I just take a little scoop of the product and apply it straight to my legs, scrub allllll the dead skin off, then rinse. once the sea salt is gone, you're left with an oil. I just shave with the leftover oil, then rinse once more. it is the best, easiest, closest shave I've ever had! 

how to buy: this week I'm hosting an arbonne 'party' online for anyone who wants to try this or any other of arbonne's all natural products. you can click here to join the party on facebook and to find out about other products. you can also contact Kristin Daniels for more info on products.. all of her info is listed on the event description! AND because she is so kind, she is offering a great discount for anyone who orders from my party this week! if you order today, your order will be 35% off. if you order tomorrow (wednesday, 6/25) your order will be 30% off. thursday- 25% off. friday- 20% off. 

just join the online party and go to www.arbonne.com to browse products. if we aren't friends on facebook, just let Kristin know that you found her through makeup-your-mind blog! :-)

have a good day everyone!
-katie
Monday, June 23, 2014


hi guys! any time I post about subscription boxes (the two I subscribe to are birchbox & ipsy) I get a lot of questions on what they are, how they work, the price, my opinion, etc. so I thought I'd break it down a little today.

in general, you pay $10 a month for these 2 beauty subscription boxes, (the 2 I'm talking about today) and each month (anywhere between the 10th-20th) you get a box/bag of makeup and beauty goodies. I have been subscribed to both for a while now, so I sort of have a feel of where each box shines, and where I wish they would improve. here's the basics.


what do you get? 
birchbox: a box of samples and sometimes full-size products. they always include an 'extra' which isn't beauty related.. the extra could be chocolates, tea, bobby pins, a granola bar, jewelry, etc. the rest is beauty related, but not always makeup products. it ranges from skincare, perfume samples, nail polish, hair products, lotions, shower gel, mascara, lipstick, and so on.

ispy: while birchbox has a pretty broad range of types of products, ipsy is more specific. they usually send more makeup and skincare items than anything; however, I've gotten hair products, nail polish, lotions, skincare, etc before. their products tend to be full size (as in lips glosses or mascaras) with sample sized hair care and lotions.

what brands? 
birchbox: here is the major difference that I have noticed with the two subscriptions, and the key point that I think will help make your decision.. the quality and price point of the brands. birchbox tends to send expensive, high-end products in sample sizes. example: mally beauty mascara, bumble and bumble hair products, urban decay eyeliner. birchbox items comes in a cute little box, that I actually reuse sometimes.

ipsy: for the most part, ipsy sends cheaper, more affordable products in full size, but sometimes sample sizes. example: NYX lip gloss, elf makeup brushes. ipsy items come in a makeup bag, which is a great selling point, because you get a fun new bag to use every month. the bags are usually pretty cute too. at this point I have TONS of them, more than I can use, but I still think its a great perk.

can I control what products I receive?
birchbox: when you sign up you fill out a questionnaire all about you. they ask questions about your skin type, skin color, hair color, hair type, etc. they also find out what sort of products you prefer by asking about which price point you prefer your products and what 'level' you consider your beauty expertise. its very customized, and you can really tell that they take that into consideration (for example, after a few months I changed my profile to reflect that I no longer cared for skincare products, and I haven't gotten as many at all since then)

ipsy: ipsy is a little less customize-able. you do take a quiz but the questions are more generic about brands that you have or like and a couple questions about your skin and hair. for the most part, I think ipsy only has a few bags with product combinations that they send to everyone and its sort of just luck of the draw.

the wait list:
birchbox: there is a wait list for both subscriptions, however, I found that birchbox's was much shorter. the average is 2 weeks (I think mine may have been 3)

ipsy: ipsy's wait list seemed to take forever (almost 2 months for me) and its the biggest complaint I've heard. there are ways to come off the list, like referring 2 friends. they have you share it on facebook, send out emails, etc. and if you get 2 people to not only join, but pay the $10, then you can come off the list. I wasn't able to get 2 people to join so I just waited my turn.. it took forever, but it is worth it!

how can I subscribe?
here are my referral links!

birchbox: click here to sign up

ipsy: click here to sign up

other things worth mentioning..
you can really learn more about each by going to their website, but to save time, I'll give you some basic info. each subscription is $10 a month, and they automatically charge you. it can be cancelled at any time, free of charge. with birchbox, you can pay for the full year upfront, and it only costs $110 (so in theory, you get a month free). I have never had to use ipsy's customer service; I have had to contact birchbox (via email) because one of my items was damaged. they responded quickly and sent me a new item in a matter of days, so I was pleased with their level of customer service. each subscription has their perks, which is why I stay subscribed to both. they also have their downfalls (birchbox sends products I don't always use, ipsy sends super cheap brands I could buy myself, ie: NYX or elf) but I think they're both a lot of fun and its always nice to have a fun present in the mail each month!

if you guys have any more questions about birchbox or ipsy, or want my thoughts or opinion on which would be best for you, please feel free to ask! this month I posted my June birchbox and ipsy on instagram, so go check it out and follow me! @makupyourmind
-katie
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

all about hair!

so recently I asked on my instagram (@makupyourmind) for you guys to pick whether I posted about my favorite makeup brushes, or my favorite hair products... and hair won! so I made a little compilation of my current favorite hair products. granted, I try new things often and fall in and out of love with products often. so these are my current faves that I've been loving lately. 

I also wanted to note that I know my hair well. its tempermental and I know what works and what doesn't. and I'm sure people with different hair types have their own favorites that work for their hair. 
my hair is stick straight, flat, has not even the slightest bit of natural curl or wave, very fine, and has a tendency to get greasy by the end of the day. 
so keep all of that in mind, because if you have thick, curly hair, my faves may not work for you! okay here we go :)

1. Herbal Essences Naked Dry Shampoo: if you don't have a dry shampoo in your life.. you're really missing out. this is one of two dry shampoos in this list, because I use them so often. this is actually a new favorite that I picked up on impulse, and was pleasantly surprised. I've been using the same dry shampoo for a while now (see #4) and haven't found anything else that works as well, but this one is definitely equal. I was kind of shocked because its definitely more wet than anything else I've tried. when I first sprayed it in my hair I said "oh crap" because I just knew I'd ruined my hair for the day.. but it dried quickly and gave my roots a MAJOR boost, and surprisingly absorbed all the oil. If you're looking for a good dry shampoo that you can find at your local Walmart, Target, drugstore, etc, GET THIS ONE!

2. L'Oreal Boost It High Lift Creation Spray: I like this product because it actually has multiple uses. I like the term "creation spray" because it really does let you create different looks or effects depending on how you use it. more than anything it gives nice lift and boost at the roots. I like to tease a little and, lifting the hair up, spray directly at the root. its not quite a hairspray, so it doesn't make it crunch or give extreme hold, but its just enough to make your hair look naturally voluminous, not helmet hair. the second way to use it, and my favorite, is as a texturizing spray. as silly as it sounds, my hair is a little too perfect. its just shiny and stick straight, so when I use my wand (see #6) to create messy, bed head-ish, beach waves, I tend to look a little more like Shirley Temple than a Victoria's Secret model. but when I spray this spray all over the waves and run my fingers through it, it gives it just enough of a messy texture, and I LOVE the look. my only complaint would be the smell. it has a very strong smell.. enough that I like to step out of the bathroom when I use it, or else it sort of fills up your lugs. but if you can get past that, its a great product. 

3. Not Your Mothers Beach Babe Texturizing Cream: this sort of goes hand in hand with what I was saying about the L'Oreal spray. I like it because it sort of 'roughs' my hair up a bit and makes my beachy waves look more texturized and messy. you only need a tiny bit to work through the hair when its damp before drying. it doesn't make a huge difference, but its great for messy, summer, bed-head hair. it also smells like coconut so just another reason to love it!

4. Batiste Dry Shampoo: I wont elaborate on this too much because I did a full review here and another post on how to apply dry shampoo here (scroll to the bottom for that part). But really all you need to know about this product is that I LOVE IT and have loved it for months. It is a powder spray that absorbs oils really well and gives your roots a boost. The smells are hit or miss, you have to try different ones to find out which you like.

5. Macadamia Natural Oil Deep Repair Masque: I don't want to say MUCH because I plan on doing a full review on this product very soon.. But I will say that it is my all-time favorite beauty product I have found lately (and that includes makeup, skincare, hair, etc) and it has changed my hair. This masque is amaaaazing and I can't wait to review it for you.

6. Hot Tools 1-1/4" Tapered Curling Wand: I thought I'd include a couple 'tools' in my list as well since I use them almost every day too. I ordered this on Amazon, but its also available at Ulta, and many other stores as well. I usually stick to cheap flat irons, curling irons, etc but I decided to buy Hot Tools for my wand, because this thin, stick straight hair needs lots of help. I love this wand because its easy to use. I wrap medium size pieces of hair around the wand (holding it upside down) away from my face all over, use the texturizing spray above, run my fingers through the waves, and voila! I have the perfect, effortless, beach waves.

7. John Frieda JF1 Full Volume Hair Dryer: ya know.. I never put much thought into blow dryers. to be honest, I used to just buy whichever one was cutest at WalMart. But my pink one stopped working and I had an Amazon gift card so I decided to buy this one because it said 'full volume' and well, why not? And I love it! In fact, my mom and sister used mine and they both bought one for themselves. I mainly love how much power it has and dries my hair quickly. It may seem weird, but I use the diffuser (yes, for my straight, fine hair) because it seems to be less direct heat on my hair, and makes it look and feel so healthy and lightweight. If you need a new blow dryer, try this one! 

I wanna hear about the hair products you can't live without.. comment below!
Wednesday, May 28, 2014

2014 Summer Essentials!

hi, guys. I'm back! after over a month.. shew! 
life got busy and I took a bit of a break, but I'm back with some great posts and favorite products to share with you :) today is all about my favorite summer products, because its finally nice and sunny and warm here, and I can't get enough of it! 


1. Neutrogena Clear Face Sunscreen, $10 (comes in SPF 30 or 55)
I'm not gonna lie and say I avoid the sun, stay under an umbrella, faithfully wear a hat, etc all to prevent wrinkles. I do love the sun, and a healthy tan, but I also think its very important to protect your skin, and sunscreen is the way to do that; however, its probably not always wise to use a regular sunscreen (for your body) on your face. I always keep a face-only sunscreen with me, and I love this Neutrogena one because it promotes clear, break-out free skin. Its very sheer but does its job. 

2. Arbonne Awaken Sea Salt Scrub, $30
I've never been that girl with exceptionally smooth legs. I would shave and apply lotion immediately and my legs would look dry a few hours later. My sister told me about this scrub (which can be used for way more than shaving.. I use it all over as well) and I finally gave in and tried hers, and bought some that same day. Its a salt scrub with an amazing smelling oil. I just rub it all over my legs, to exfoliate, then rinse, then use the oil that is left on my skin to shave. I don't use shower gel or shaving cream, just this scrub, and my legs are smoother than ever. Its definitely my #1 summer essential, because I shave my legs every day with it, and barely even have to use lotion (although I do just for extra moisture) and my legs and skin in general has never looked better! (this scrub has to be ordered directly through an Arbonne consultant, so if you are interested, contact Kristin at kristindaniels7@gmail.com)

3. Nivea Extended Moisture Body Lotion, $6
I didn't really put much thought into this purchase. I wanted a good summertime lotion and saw "extended moisture" and "long lasting" so I picked it up.. and I'm so glad I did! I love it because it doesn't have that strong of a scent, so it doesn't interfere with the smell of my perfume, and it is SUPER moisturizing. I can put it on during the day and still feel it on my skin the next morning. Perfect for summertime when you're showing more skin.. I love applying it when I've been in the sun all day. It feels so great on my skin and is the most hydrating lotion I've ever used. 

4. Revlon Lip Butter in Creme Brulee, $8
I've definitely mentioned these at least 3 or 4 times on my blog.. because they're my FAVORITE lip product ever. I love how great they make my lips feel. Never drying. and I love the sheer wash of color.. which makes it perfect for summer because its effortless. Creme Brulee is, and always has been, my favorite and I wear it every day, but the lip butters come in a ton of colors ranging from pretty soft nudes to bright pinks, corals, and reds. Definitely a summer must have!

5. Clean & Clear Oil Absorbing Sheets, $6
To be honest, the Clean & Clear sheets are the only kind I've ever tried, but I'm sure any oil absorbing sheet would work fine. To me, summer means sweaty, oily skin so I keep these with me to blot any excess oil. I also love that they don't remove any makeup. 

6. Wet n Wild Color Icon Bronzer in 'Bikini Contest', $3
I typically use matte bronzers but in the summertime I just can't resist adding a little bronzed glow to my cheeks. This bronzer is super inexpensive but, like all Wet n Wild products, has great color payoff. It isn't too shimmery, but adds the perfect amount of color to your cheeks and/or T zone to give you a sunkissed look that isn't too orange or muddy. I also love that it has SPF 15!

7. Dove Advanced Care Clear Tone Deodorant, $6
Its summertime sooo.. I'm hoping you'll be using deodorant! I love Dove deodorants in general because they smell great. I specifically love the Clear Tone ones because they keep the skin under your arms pretty, if that makes sense. Its hydrating and safe, doesn't leave white creases or residue in your underarms, and it smells great!

8. Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Half Baked, $18
This color came in my Naked 2 palette, but if you're not looking to buy an expensive palette, then at least get this shadow in a single! Its the perfect summertime color. Its a gorgeous bronzey gold that compliments any eye color, but I even like to dust it over my cheek bones as an illuminator. It just screams summer to me!

9. Urban Decay DeSlick Mattifying Powder, $32
I loved this in the winter, but I've been loving it even more recently. It absorbs oil so well, and since its translucent, you don't have to worry about picking out the right color to match your skin or foundation. It makes the shine go away instantly and effortlessly and I don't leave home without it! 

10. Maybelline Volum' Express Mega Plush Mascara, $8
This has definitely been mentioned here one or two times as well. I am in love with how natural this mascara looks.. its like you aren't wearing any at all. It lengthens the lashes and volumizes but somehow never looks clumpy, dry, or flaky. To be honest, I'm not really a waterproof mascara person. If I plan to get wet (pool, beach, etc) I just don't wear mascara; however, those of you who are looking for a good waterproof option, pick this up. because its extremely natural looking and lasts forever!

11. Nivea Lip Butter in Raspberry Rose, $2-3
Yet another lip butter.. not to be confused with the Revlon ones! This one smells amazing, and I was surprised to find that it leaves the prettiest pearly pink tint to your lips. I honestly use this more for moisture because it feels AMAZING on my lips, but the smell and color are just added bonuses! 

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So, what products do you consider must-haves for spring and summer? I want to hear all about it! 
Monday, April 14, 2014

Hi guys! Want to win a really cool Stila palette plus one of my favorite brushes? 

We all get stuck in our routine. I wore my makeup the same way every day for years. I wore the same foundation, eyeliner, mascara, etc and refused to budge. 

Even when I started to experiment with some new products, the thought of wearing a dark lipstick or a pop of color was pretty intimidating to me. But I got brave and I did it, and I'm so glad I did! Now, wearing color on my lips is one of my favorite ways to bump up my look. 

I know it can be a bit daunting to change up your look, but I want you guys to take a risk! 
All this week (ending next Monday) I'm challenging you to change up your look.
Take a risk, be different, and embrace it! 

Need some ideas? 

- part your hair differently.. a small, but easy step! 
- wear a bright lipstick
- skip eyeliner for the day 
- wear false lashes
- rock some bold brows
- dye your hair!
- wear a bright blush
- try some colorful eye shadow 

The risk is up to you. Just do something that you would never normally do. 
Don't be scared or self-conscious. The whole point of this challenge is for you to break out of your shell and try something different.. if you embrace it and wear it with confidence, it'll work, I promise! 

Part 2 of the challenge is to take a picture and upload it to Instagram.
then hasthag #changeupchallenge 
(you can tag me as well if you want)

Then tell all your friends about the challenge
The picture with the most likes wins! 

You'll need to be following me on Instagram to enter
@makupyourmind

ALSO-
if you share the photo below as well 
and tell your friends about the challenge, I'll like your #changeupchallenge photo
so you're guaranteed an extra like! just be sure to tag me at @makupyourmind


Have fun.. and be brave! 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Contouring & Highlighting - All you need to know

I feel like contouring and highlighting started to get really popular when Kim Kardashian and her makeup artist released this before photo of Kim. She's known for her gorgeous glowing skin and it was nice to see the secrets her makeup artist used. Since then, people have been scrambling to carve out and manipulate their facial structure using makeup.. and although there is a certain technique to learn, its easier than you think!

Part 1: The Basics
Here's what you need to know:

Contouring is using a darker shade to slim, carve, and make an area appear to be set back, like a natural shadow on your face. 

Highlighting is using a lighter shade to make an area 'pop' and give it a natural, glowy sheen. 

In general, try to remember that contouring makes something set back, highlighting brings it forward. 

Where to contour: 
- along the hairline (for a smaller forhead)
- along the sides of your nose (for a thinner nose)
- along the underside of the cheek bone (for a thinner, more chiseled face)
- along the jaw line (to hide a double chin and make face less round) 

Where to highlight: 
- center of the forehead 
- under the eyes and downward in a triangle motion on either side of the nose
- high points of the cheek bones (to make them look more pronounced)
- bridge of the nose, but not the tip
- top of the chin 

The picture above is a great guideline; however, the shape of your face is really the deciding factor on what exactly you should highlight and contour. Notice that contouring along the hairline makes your forehead appear smaller.. if you already have a small forehead, that's obviously not a step you should take.

Here's another great guideline, but this time it shows the general areas you should highlight/contour based on your face shape. (The dark is highlighting, the light is highlighting)

I hope you're with me so far! 

Part 2: The Products
Now for the good part: the products you can use! 

1. Maybelline Fit Me Foundation Stick 
(since we're contouring, you'll need a shade 2 or 3 shades darker than your skin tone)
2. Real Techniques Contour Brush
(this is available as part of the core collection)
3. Nars Laguna Bronzer

*Important: Contouring shades should be matte!! This is very important. You wont have the same effect at all if you use a bronzer with any amount of shimmer to it. 

1. Maybelline Dream Lumi Highlighting Concealer
(at least 1, preferably 2, shades lighter than your skin tone)
2. A Fan Brush, as long as it isn't too big, any fan brush will be fine
3. The Balm Mary Lou-Manizer Highlighter

Part 3: The Technique
Okay so we've covered what and why we contour, and what we use to contour..
now you need to know how to do it! Think of it this way: you've applied foundation to your face,
making it a blank canvas. So now you need to go back and add more dimension! 

I don't have a fancy graphic for this, and if you're a visual learner like me, I'm sorry..
try your best to follow my rambling. 

You'll notice with the products I included a cream/liquid product and a powder. You don't HAVE to use two different products every time, but you can. I'm about to tell you step by step how to do each, with both products listed, but you can always skip the cream or powder (one or the other) and limit it to which one works best for you. 

Contouring: 
Step 1. Apply your foundation
Step 2. Apply the cream foundation stick, at least 2 shades darker than your
skin tone, to the areas you wish to contour.
Step 3. Using any type of clean, flat brush, start blending this out gently. Don't wipe it all away, but keep it from looking like a harsh line. 
Step 4. Using a pointed thin contouring brush, trace over the contoured line with your matte bronzing powder

Highlighting: 
Step 5. Apply a lighter shade of concealer under the eyes in an upside down triangle downward on either side of your nose. You may use a highlighting concealer like the Dream Lumi, or just a lighter shade
Step 6. Apply Maybelline Dream Lumi highlighting concealer on the other areas you wish to highlight
Step 7. Use your finger to slightly blend the liquid highlighter so it isn't harsh
Step 8. Use a fan brush to apply your powder highlighter/luminizer to the areas you highlighted

Step 9. Use a stippling brush to blend and buff everything out neatly
Step 10. Use a setting powder (be careful not to wipe any of the makeup away) to set the makeup and keep you matte! 

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I hope I didn't lose any of you along the way. It really isn't as hard as you think, and the best way to learn is to just do it!  I hope you all enjoyed this and if you try it out (or any other looks or products you saw here) hashtag #makupyourmindblog on twitter or instagram! :-)

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Spring Makeup: Save & Splurge

What can I say?! I've been bitten by the Spring bug. So I decided to make a compilation of some great Spring makeup at 2 different price points- so you can decide whether you want to save or splurge. 
Keep in mind these aren't comparisons or exact dupes, but they've very similar and all favorites of mine.

Face
Save: CoverGirl Outlast 3-in-1 Foundation, $12 +
Rimmel Stay Matte Powder, $5
Splurge: Urban Decay Naked Skin Liquid Foundation, $40 +
Urban Decay De-slick Mattifying Powder, $32

Mascara
Save: Maybelline Falsies Mascara, $7
Splurge: Benefit They're Real Mascara, $23

Eye Shadow
Save: Maybelline Eye Studio Quads in 'Taupe Temptress' & 'Sapphire Siren', $10 each
Splurge: Stila 'In The Garden' palette, $40

Blush
Save: Elf 'Candid Coral', $3
Splurge: Nars 'Deep Throat', $30

What is your idea of perfect spring makeup?
Also, I'd love to hear if you'd like to see more save/splurge posts, they're fun to do!
Thursday, March 20, 2014

Spring 2014 Nail Trends


Happy first day of spring, everyone! ...Although it feels nothing like spring where I live. In fact, it is supposed to snow AGAIN next week. But I'm pressing on and embracing some of this spring's big trends, in hopes that it pushes the cold weather far, far away. 

I've been doing some research on nail trends for this spring, and although some of them are pretty predictable and expected- pastels, florals, etc- I think the key this year is keeping it classy. In my opinion, I think the trend is to go for a classier, more subdued version of the florals, pastels, neons, etc we loved last spring and summer. Think "Secret Garden" and less "Spring Break".
I don't know about you, but I'm excited about trying some new things! 
Here is some nail inspiration for Spring 2014!

Floral
Tip: Keep it limited to an accent nail or two. Don't go overboard and make it look like flowers threw up all over your nails. Pick a neutral color for the rest of your nails, or add some glitter to another nail for variety.

Pastels
Tip: Your nails don't have to look like an easter egg. If you're mixing colors, keep it limited to one or two pastels that complement each other. Or keep it simple and stick with one really pretty color that pops.
 
 

Ombre
This trend is nothing new and although I feel like its sort of overdone, I think a really simple ombre nail can look great. Tip: Keep it limited to 2 colors. Pick a color and bring it gradually lighter, you don't need 3 or 4 colors all bleeding into each other for a great ombre nail. 
 
 

White Nails
Tip: If you want a completely opaque, non-streaky white, try this- put one layer of white polish, then use a mattifying polish (like Essie's 'Matte About You') and then apply another layer of white. It will be streak-free! You can also kick it up a bit by adding a glitter accent nail, some silver stripes, or an unexpected pop of color.
 
 


Natural, Romantic, Subdued Hues
I know this doesn't seem all that springy, but trust me when I say these shades are hot this spring. I actually really like the romantic shades. This is where I think the "Secret Garden" idea comes from. Since these are just one-shade nail looks, I'm including the polish color in case you want to try it out!
Essie 'Romper Room'

Essie 'Cocktails & Coconuts' 

Zoya 'Marley'

Essie 'Fiji' 

Okay guys, I hope this was helpful. I'd love to hear what nail trend you're planning to try!




Saturday, March 15, 2014

Birchbox vs Ipsy: March 2014

Its that time again! There is nothing more exciting than seeing these pink things in my mailbox! And there is nothing worse than being disappointed in what you got.. And I know a lot of people who have subscribed to Birchbox and have been bummed. And curious about Ipsy. So this post will be my final decision and final recommendation on which company I think is worth subscribing to. First I'll give a brief description of what I got in each and my overall thoughts. Then I'll break it down on which I think is worth the $10 subscription.

Birchbox
1. Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle Spray, full size $21.95
2. Harvey Prince Cherie Blossom Perfume sample, full size $55
3. Gilchrist & Soames London Collection Body Lotion, full size $16
4. Tea Forte Minteas, pack of 3 $9.99
5. Coola Tinted Matte Moisturizer, $36
6. Ghirardelli Cherry Tango Dark Chocolate Square

Overall thoughts: My main complaint/annoyance from this Birchbox was that a lot of people seemed to have this exact same box. I did a quick Birchbox hashtag search on Instagram and saw at least 20 people that had the exact same box as I did, no differences at all. This mainly frustrates me because Birchbox is supposed to be a completely customized box that is determined by the questionnaire you fill out when you join. I'll elaborate more on my thoughts on Birchbox at the end. The chocolate was yummy, and I really like the smell of the lotion- seems like a very high-end lotion. Haven't tried the detangle spray because I don't typically use them. I've used Coola sunscreen before, not sure how I feel about it being a tinted moisturizer, but I may use it on a day I'll be out in the sun (has SPF 30)

Ipsy
 
1. Pixie Flawless Beauty Primer, full size $9
2. NYX 'Love in Rio' Eye Shadow, full size $6 (this is full size)
3. Bare Minerals Marvelous Moxie Lipstick in 'Get Ready', full size $18 (swatched left in picture)
4. Chela Indigo Blue Liquid Liner, full size $24 (swatched right in picture)
**here is a better photo of the Bare Minerals lipstick 

Overall thoughts: I think the bag itself is tacky. I will probably give it away or throw it in a drawer to hold tampons or something. There are only 4 items in the bag, which doesn't seem like much compared to what I've gotten in the past, and compared to what Birchbox sends. I'm going to nitpick for a second.. I won't use the eyeliner because its a very bright blue and I just don't do indigo eyeliner. I wish they had sent a more user-friendly color like black or brown. It seems like a really nice tip though. The lipstick is really creamy and shiny. A really nice sample.

should I subscribe to, Birchbox or Ipsy?

So I started asking myself this question, which one I would recommend to you guys and I realized that you may have a different preference on what kinds of things you get in your subscription box/bag. So I'll break it down in a pretty simple way so you can make your own decision.

Subscribe to Birchbox if...
(^link)
- you like high-end beauty samples
- you like food-related extras like tea, chocolate, bonbons, etc
- you like things that aren't always makeup or skincare products. for example:
hair bands, decorative bobby pins, nail polish, pore strips, etc
- you like sample packets like shampoo or hand lotion
- you prefer skincare products, hair products, lotions, sunscreens, etc
over actual makeup items. (although Birchbox does sometimes include makeup)

Subscribe to Ipsy if...
(^link)
- you like actual makeup items like eye shadow, eye liner, lip gloss, etc
- you don't mind cheaper brands that you could buy from WalMart, Target, CVS, etc
- you want/need small cosmetic bags in all shapes, sizes, and colors
- you'd prefer 3 or 4 full size items, over 5 or 6 sample size items

In other words
Birchbox: 5 or 6 high-end, expensive (usually) samples in small(er) sizes. Usually at least 1 foil packet of shampoo, lotion, moisturizer, etc, mixed with sample bottles of other skincare or hair care items, perfume samples, nail polishes, and an 'extra' which is usually food-related, like tea, chocolate, etc.
My main complaint- almost always something that I won't/don't use and just throw away

Ipsy: 4 or 5 inexpensive full-size samples. Usually a lip product in a smaller sized tube, an eyeliner, mascara, or eye shadow, a hand lotion, facial moisturizer, nail polish, etc. Almost always consists of makeup items only, although I have gotten some skincare products and hand lotions as well.
My main complaint- the products are usually items I could just buy for myself and aren't that expensive. For example, the NYX eye shadow or Pixie primer which can be purchased at Target for under $10 each

If you want to subscribe to Birchbox or Ipsy, click the
referral links above to join! 

Shew. I know this was sort of long, but I know a lot of people who have been disappointed with Birchbox lately and are thinking of switching to Ipsy. I personally still like Birchbox because I like trying high-end products, or different things like the tea flavored 'relaxation' mints I got this month, or the chocolate covered fortune cookie I got in December. But I really like that Ipsy gives full-size makeup items or decent sized, usable (vs foil packet) samples like the Bare Minerals lipstick or the full sized eye shadow.

I will stay subscribed to both for a few more months, because I like having the best of both worlds.
But I hope this helped you make a decision (if you were trying to decide) on which subscription box/bag is best for you. Let me know your thoughts on both and what you got in your Birchbox or Ipsy!